Why ELBows rule and you stink!: An analysis of damage upgrade costs. (in General)

Chocolate Thunder May 16 2005 12:04 PM EDT

I've just completed an analysis on the costs of upgrading your ranged weapons on CB1 and on CB2. And I do believe Jon has made some changes to the damage costs formulas from CB1 to CB2 that greatly affect the balance of the game.

Note: If you don't feel like trying to pick through all of the following calculations and interpretations, feel free to stop now. It can be summarized with "All ranged weapons besides the ELB will grow to stink far more quickly than they did in CB1."

Also Note: I'm not saying these formulas are how Jon calculates upgrade costs, I'm saying they closely approximate the costs.

The cost to upgrade the damage multiplier on ranged weapons one unit can be approximated with the formula:

$ = A*e^(B*x)

Where A and B are weapon dependent constants. And x is the damage multiplier you wish to upgrade.

In CB1 A varies from weapon to weapon while B remains nearly constant at ~0.575. In CB2 this is not the case; B also differs from weapon to weapon. This causes the upgrade costs for weapons with larger values for B to skyrocket far more quickly than weapons with smaller values. I've included a graph of the total NW cost to upgrade an ELB, Compound, Exbow and Composite in each game to illustrate my point. (Figures 1 and 2)

The order is still the same. But notice how quickly the exbow costs rocket passed $1billion in NW, just in damage for CB2, while in CB1 the costs are all relatively similar from weapon to weapon. An x100 ELB in CB2 is cheaper than an x25 ELB in CB1, but an x100 exbow in CB2 would run well over $2billion!

So, what does this all mean? Basically, it means either Jon has to rework the damage cost formulas or everyone needs to use an ELB (or a compound if you can't find an ELB). Unless, of course, you want to spend $100 million to get a measley x70 Xbow.

Questions? Concerns? A desire for more numbers and graphs?

QBsutekh137 May 16 2005 12:12 PM EDT

HIDDEN BASE DAMAGE!!!!!!!! It's real!

Soylent Green is PEOPLE!

QBsutekh137 May 16 2005 12:44 PM EDT

OK, more thoughts...

We always knew the ELB was the only game in town for bows. That's not news. I have always said ELBs suck because of their power, and I still think so. I hate rares, have always hated rares, and will always hate rares. That, also, is not news.

The big issue is that the specialty xbows appear sooo steep compared to ELBs. But here is the possible reason why:

Upgrades to a specialty bow correspond to an increase in % of STR or DEX you take from an opponent. A % increase such as that is, in effect, exponential. The specialty xbows have to be steeper to upgrade, otherwise the gains would get more and more substantial with each added upgrade.

Think of it this way: Say you had infinite cash, and had an exbow to the level where it took 90% of the opponent's strength. Then, you upgraded it so it took 91%. That means you eliminated 10% of the opponents remaining STR (as opposed to before).

Now, say you had an exbow that took 98%, and increased it to 99%. You just eliminated FIFTY PERCENT of the opponent's remaining strength.

Also, specialty xbows do two things: cause damage AND suck away STR or Dex. They can't be expected to be as cheap to upgrade as a straight bow.

I still think ELBs are dumb, and back in the day, it was also because there was no choice there (as there is with the Big Four melee weapons). Jonathan's response to that was a mix of "tough" and the introduction of the specialty xbows. Is there still an incredible dearth of choice when it comes to ranged weapons? Yep. But to me, these upgrade curves make sense for what we currently have.

Chocolate Thunder May 16 2005 12:57 PM EDT

Chet, based on another analysis of Ax and Exbows. In CB1 it was a 1% decrease per x on the bow. In CB2 its more of a 0.25% decrease per x. So a x60 would give a 15% decrease, much like a tiny x15 exbow from CB1, that tiny bow costs about $30 million now, instead of around $1 million.

Reebok May 16 2005 1:04 PM EDT

Under 20 mil to get a X100 ELB? I didn't realize it was that low, well I suppose I gotta go buy one of those now.

How much is a base going for these days anyway?

Chocolate Thunder May 16 2005 1:05 PM EDT

Also, The specialty x-bows are really the only way to stop the ELBs.

Jochumia (The Renegades) Black Belt Jones (The Disappointment Llamas) Jochumia 1 11:11 AM EDT

The ToE doesn't work for it anymore. A $20 million ELB beats 400K off me in one round (Hopefully its at least a triple hit).

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] May 16 2005 1:06 PM EDT

Does this mean I should sell mine for 50 million dollars now and get out while the market is hot?

QBsutekh137 May 16 2005 1:50 PM EDT

I agree. ELBs seem overpowered, and even before, CBFs did nothing against them. Ranged damage for tanks is now quite extreme (Ranger rarely needs more than 3 rounds to kill any opponent, and he does not even have the largest ELB in game).

Majestik Moose May 16 2005 3:12 PM EDT

it would be interesting to see numbers for plus-to-hit as well.
If exbows/axbows will have a chance vs. for example DB, which is a commonly used.. thing.
And, if elbows have godly powers at that front as well.

Chocolate Thunder May 16 2005 4:57 PM EDT

The plus to hit differences aren't that different from item to item (excluding slings, they are dirt cheap to up the +). Here's the CB2 plus to hit costs.

If its too hard to see... the Exbow/Hxbow/Axbows are a touch cheaper than the ELB but more expensive than the Composite. Go Go Composite!

This new buff does help, i think, but I do also think the X-bows need cheaper plus to hit (and maybe damage as well) before becoming truely viable.

Undertow May 16 2005 5:14 PM EDT

Are Elbows gonna be next months SMTOE's? Dear god I hope not. Let's have a "Nerf that item!" free month!

Or else, let's do it right, and find Jon's house while brandishing torches and pitchforks!
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