Balancing weapons for RPG

Discussion in 'Game Design' started by Maltakreuz, Jun 22, 2016.

  1. Maltakreuz

    Maltakreuz New Member

    Jun 21, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Suppose in rpg we have 3 weapon types: dagger, sword and axe. Usually they are balanced like this:

    Name       Damage       Seconds for Attack          DPS
    Dagger        2                    1                2
    Sword         4                    2                2
    Axe           8                    4                2

    So there is no real choice. They all are just the same.

    Replacing the constant damage to the probabilistic (2d4, 2-8) or the adding of crits almost does not change the situation, because the probability is taken into account in the average DPS. Some weapon becomes more reliable middle-class and other more risky but with great potential. But as in a typical RPG player kills many Monster this factor goes down, for the average DPS.

    How to make a really different weapons? How to make a choice of weapon really interesting and meaningfull choice with consequences. Not just another image for the same average DPS?

    Feel free to share your toughts.
  2. kevintrepanier

    Original Member Indie Author

    Feb 14, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Get some inspiration from typical Tower Defense games : area damage, freeze effect, longer range attacks, ...
  3. Tzyoggah

    Tzyoggah New Member

    Jun 24, 2016
    Likes Received:
    One idea would be to add damage types and therefore also different armor types that are vulnerable to certain damage types. That way you could really change each weapons necessity.
  4. LongRunGames

    LongRunGames New Member

    Jul 5, 2016
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    How about adding a drop in defence between attacks, like the vulnerability you would have winding up a heavy axe that wouldn't be present wielding a small dagger, I don't know how your game works so not sure how implementable this would be.

    Edited to Add idea:

    What about some weapons inflicting status effects on enemies, like poison, weakened defence etc or positive status effects on the player like regenerative healing or bonus loot pickups for using daggers?
    #4 LongRunGames, Jul 5, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2016
  5. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

    Jul 27, 2004
    Likes Received:
    You can have different weapon damage and armor defense such that one person can either pick up a very heavy weapon and no shield, a heavy weapon and light shield, a light weapon and heavy shield, etc. This will make it so that you can't have the best of both worlds and have to make a choice of more damage or more protection. Instead of balancing every weapon perfectly the same, the imbalanced choice is placed on the player based on their own desires.
  6. BNG

    BNG New Member

    Jul 6, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Your question depends on the overall combat system that you are using.
    Currently you have only two stats for the offence: damage and attack speed. But what stats do you use for defence?
    Dodge, Parry, Armor?
    You can make different weapons when you take the defence into account. For example:
    Daggers are difficult to dodge but easy to parry and/or bad vs. high armor
    Longswords are easier to dodge but good vs armor.
    Axes are easiest to dodge but basically ignore armor or parry.

    It all depends on the combat rules. Once you have a clear system, you can add any weapon stat:

    Attack Speed
    Dodge Modifier
    Parry Modifier
    Armor Penetration
    Critical Hit Probability
    Critical Effects

    BTW: Are you from Germany too?
  7. Johnny Dalvi

    Johnny Dalvi New Member

    Jun 26, 2016
    Likes Received:
    it depends on so many aspects:

    *When the damage will be applied? in the beginning of the animation, in the middle of it or in the final?
    like a axe for example:

    Wait 4 seconds >> attack >> wait 4 seconds; or
    Wait 2 seconds >> attack >> wait 2 seconds >>> wait 2 seconds >> attack >> wait 2 seconds >> wait 2 seconds; or
    Attack >> wait 4 seconds >> attack >> wait 4 seconds.

    If the damage occours before the first cooldown time, then AXE will be more effective than the DAGGER, even with the same DPS because it will allow you to kill the enemy before he can attack you long enough to do the same amount of damage.

    else if the damage occours at the final of the cooldown time, then the DAGGER will be more effective than the AXE, since it will allow you to have less wasted damage.
    for example, an enemy have 5 of HP, it would take 5 seconds to kill it with the dagger and 8 seconds to kill it with the AXE.

    if the damage is applied in the middle of the animation (like in the second example I gave in the begginig of the post) it should be somehow balanced.

    If you want to make the type of weapon important, and not only it`s DPS, you can always add Armor penetration stat as well(AP). this way you can give a higher AP/DPS to the heavier weapon and allow the ligther weapon to have higher DPS and lower AP/DPS, this way the ligther weapon will be better to kill enemies with low armor and the heavier weapon will be better to kill high armor enemies. Other aspects like Dodge/parry/accuracy would work as a charm as well as BNG said above.

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