June 20, 2023
“These blast points are too accurate for sand people. Only Imperial stormtroopers are so precise…”
The Combat Upgrade has a relatively simple combat system compared to other eras of SWG: for the most part, it all comes down to manipulating how often you hit and get hit via Accuracy and Defense. For as simple as that can be, though, our first implementation of that system had some shortcomings:
The new combat mechanics, which we’re excited to share today, improves upon the shortcomings of the initial design, and introduces some new tools that should make combat a lot more engaging and fair. This isn’t a gameplay overhaul; you don’t need to go recreate your characters or buy all new gear, unless you see something new you want to try out. That said, these under-the-hood changes will still shake up the meta for people interested in min/maxing their characters. These changes are in the last stages of minor calibrations and complete enough to share today, but we may make balance adjustments before release (We will keep this post updated in that case).
In this Developer Diary, we’ll be taking a deep dive into system mechanics, covering everything that’s changing, and expanding on existing mechanics for more transparency. This journey takes us far into the belly of the Space Slug… so we’re going to start simple at the top and get deeper as it goes on.
All of the hit/miss combat variables are reflected in the new icon next to your target’s name:
This will shift from white (<40% chance to hit), red, orange, yellow, to green (90%+ chance to hit) to indicate your chance to hit this opponent. Green is good, white and red are bad.
The key factor in making combat more fun in Restoration is giving players more control over their hit chances. Your skill mods from professions and armor/weapons still matter a lot, but when you’re facing down a big tanky enemy that just seems to dodge every attack, you need some way of breaking through those defenses. The most influential change of this update (which we’ll explain the mechanics of further below) is raising the impact of buffs and debuffs that occur in combat.
Above is a table showing many of the most common buffs and debuffs that will occur in combat. Anything that impacts accuracy will have a big weight on whether or not attacks are landing.
Movement and posture have always had a big impact on accuracy as well, but this is not always obvious to players especially if they have experience in other servers or eras of SWG.
We will show some detailed numbers further below, but broadly here’s what you should know:
Moving character = higher defense, lower accuracy
From most impact to least:
All 6 core stats (Melee General, Ranged General, Defense General, Opportune Chance, Toughness, and Endurance) have been completely reimplemented from a coding standpoint. It's less drastic than it sounds: the “themes” behind each are still the same, and for most players in their existing suits, you won’t notice that things feel extremely different. However, here are some key facts and differences that indicate why we had to rework things:
With that said, now all 6 stats will only begin to hit diminishing returns at 250. We will show more in the next section about what this means, but it is important to note that stats will still have a noticeable impact above 250 and you shouldn’t just consider those as caps.
Here are the new base modifiers granted by each of the stats going forward:
You will want to pair these stats with whatever suits your skill tree best. Here is an overview of the total stat bonuses that are granted by each profession mastery:
Finally, in addition to the core stats, we are making changes to certain professions that would greatly benefit from staying mobile, giving them a new stat that will mitigate the accuracy penalty from moving. This will include Smuggler, who can now stay effective with Pistols and Unarmed weapons while moving.
Okay we’ve been putting it off long enough. Some people just want the spreadsheets. Here is exactly how the new combat mechanics determine your accuracy, defense and overall hit chance:
“I heard Yoda talking about Diminishing Returns. I’ve been wondering– What are Diminishing Returns?”
I’m truly so glad you asked. Once a stat hits its “soft cap”, instead of granting its benefit at a 1:1 rate, the effectiveness of the stat diminishes according to this formula:
((3 * softCap * Value ) / (2 * softCap + Value))
This has the effect of tapering off in a logarithmic manner. The higher your stat total, the less incremental benefit you will get. Some examples below of your effective benefit at various stat totals:
*Note: There are no 'bonuses' once reaching soft cap, as previously existed for Endurance and Toughness
Damage in the prior combat system was simply an average of minimum and maximum weapon damage, and you’d get a flat bonus to damage based on your accuracy (and mitigation from defense). Now, accuracy and defense will influence how hard you hit based on your weapon’s Minimum and Maximum Damage. This both creates a cap for how much additional damage that you can do with accuracy, and also adds some new possibilities for customization of weapon crafts.
If the accuracy and defense are equal, then we use the average of your weapon’s min and max damage. If accuracy is higher, this scales towards the weapon’s max damage, maxing out if accuracy is double the defense (the same scale applies if defense is higher than accuracy). We hope that players use this knowledge to experiment with weapon min/max damage rather than just pouring all the points into max (e.g., if you have the type of build that doesn’t stack accuracy, you may want to get a much higher minimum weapon damage to compensate).
Below is a simplified visual of how damage is calculated. There are innumerable buffs and items that impact damage further, which have been left off for simplicity.
These changes have been undergoing testing by our team and the Senate for a few weeks now, and we are getting some very positive feedback. We will be making some further balance changes to individual classes as part of this update as well, since some professions are benefiting more from these changes than others. You can expect these changes to make it to the server in the near future. If you have ideas, be sure to share them with your Senators.
All in all: this is still the same Combat Upgrade. We just wanted to deliver the game at the most fun it can be, and we think these changes will make combat just feel a lot better. You don’t need to relearn anything at all, but if you really want to get every advantage you can, hopefully this information will give you some ideas of things to play with.
Questions, comments, concerns? We want to hear them.
Send in your feedback here, and we’ll respond in a future developer diary.
May the Force be with You
-ornj, Fuego, and the Development Team