Let us chat some more about the Exbow. (in General)

QBRanger April 9 2009 12:33 AM EDT

I hate to bring this up again, but for a long time now this item is doing things that no other item in CB does.

That is with 1 hit for 1 damage take out an entire character.

Yes, it has to be x3000 for it to do this, but let us look at other weapons at x3000. My MsB at x4800 does about 350k damage a hit. Laughable with the 10M HP AS's out there, or the 10M HP walls out there. Along with all the PL/HP TSA minions. An x3000 ELB does 750k a hit, possibly 3M a hit but to 1 minion and the other minions are still alive. And PL works on every hit. My MoD is x3500 and does 300k a hit. 600k to HP from AS but still laughable at the higher levels compared to DD spells.

Again, imagine if the Mageseeker bow drained all the DD ability of a mage with 1 hit for 1 damage.

I believe the ex and axbows should have their drain proportional to the damage it does. And with a max percent drain per hit of let us say 33%.

Nothing wrong with 5 hits from such a weapon draining 10 million strength to 100k. But to drain 10 million to negatives with 1 is just plain unbalanced.

Yes, one can use DB's to avoid the drain, and one can use PL to avoid the first hit drain, but those are very limited in their effectiveness.

This item almost forces tanks to wear DBs instead of a choice between EB and DB. No choice=bad.

As someone else in the game stated : "I don't think there's another item that eliminates 50% of the opposition so effectively as it does, and in one round"

So can we please have a balancing of the exbow, pretty please.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 12:39 AM EDT

may I politely disagree...I have a 2500 named exbow that I paid quite dearly for and it does by no means take a tank to negative str in one hit. Sure if you have 3M str to go along with it...My 600,000 str minion drains hubbells halidon from 600k hits to 80k hits in about 6 rounds all the while doing only say 40k damage.

Here's my take: the exbow is EXTREMELY hard to use by itself hence why very few people actually use them. They do almost no damage and as a result must be included with some other damage dealing weapon, familiar, or GA/AMF. Just ask Lightning raider how he gets owned so easily by any mage.

My idea of OP is a strat or item that is unbeatable and the ex/ax bow's are VERY far from that hence why so few people use them and why they are not abused.

QBOddBird April 9 2009 12:40 AM EDT

I agree. Evasion was considered overpowered because in just one skill, it managed to annihilate half of the teams on CB (assuming an even half are tanks.)

That was with a skill being buffed by items and often concentrated on a single minion to achieve such heights; the Exbow requires no such thing. Mere NW is all that is required, and with CBD at its lowest rate in years, that is not much of an obstacle.

It is much like firing a Mageshield onto an opponent mage. The entire offense is annihilated - and the Exbow doesn't just stop at one minion, if you have multiple tanks, it moves on.

In short: there shouldn't be a single item that can, by itself, destroy the entire offense of a team. The Exbow can.

Please, fix that.

[P]Mitt April 9 2009 12:41 AM EDT

Random question: If we do what you are proposing, will the exbow and axbows become underpowered? How much damage do they do in comparison to an ELB or MsK?

QBOddBird April 9 2009 12:42 AM EDT

Yours is an excellent example, Fatility.

With an Exbow, 600k STR, and 150k DX, you a Halidon of this size - SILVERWARE lvl 7,930,756 owned by QBsutekh137 (Hubbell) - down to 80k per hit.

That's MILLIONS of Strength and Dexterity reduced to 80k hits by less than a million total STR and DX + a weapon with only 2500x.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 12:43 AM EDT

well Lighnigh raider with 10,000,000 str and a 3500 named exbow only does 125,000 damage...

QBOddBird April 9 2009 12:44 AM EDT

The damage it does is hardly under discussion, as the weapon's primary use isn't to do damage...if you were under the impression that your Exbow should be putting out massive damage when you bought it, I'm afraid you didn't understand the purpose of an Enforcer's Crossbow.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 12:46 AM EDT

honestly I build my character around one main concept:

having only one source of damage (either tank or mage) is extremely weak unless you can pump massive NW.

That's why I have both a SF and a ELB tank.

Having one damage dealer is both easily combatted and beaten.

For example without my SF and ELB tank I would NEVER beat hubbell:

the exbow alone, even if it dropped his hal to -10 gajillion str wouldn't make me win because I would have done virtually no damage.

an exbow tank has to last AT LEAST 6-7 rounds to have a chance of winning a fight.

QBOddBird April 9 2009 12:48 AM EDT

So your counter to the argument that a single item can defeat an entire type of offense - tank - is that you shouldn't be using one offensive type?

I don't understand how your strategy advice makes the Exbow any less overpowered.

QBRanger April 9 2009 12:49 AM EDT

The exbow and axbow are not meant to be damage dealers.

They are meant to drain strength or dexterity. And if they can reduce other tanks damage by 5x, is that not enough? Or do you have to have it reduced to 0 in 1-2 hits to call it effective?

Just like a minion who trains UC or one that uses SG or COC, they are meant to help you live to melee rounds to let you pwn them.

Lightning Raider gets owned by mages due to his lack of AMF. He is using a weapons with low damage output in ranged in combination with DM. He should do much better if he went heavy AMF. But it is his choice to concentrate on beating tanks.

But to take a HF like Sut's and reduce its damage that much is incredible.

There are some exbows that take that damage down to ZERO in 1 or 2 hits.

There is no other item like that.

I know of a lot of people that do not use the exbow for one reason-The Vorpal Blade. We see how OP it is and do not wish to have a 100M paperweight when it finally is balanced.

To me the exbow fails the smell test. It is obviously overpowered to me. Name me one other item that can do what it does.

QBRanger April 9 2009 12:51 AM EDT

"an exbow tank has to last AT LEAST 6-7 rounds to have a chance of winning a fight."

Just like any CoC mage, or any SG mage, or any UC only tank, or any non missile weapon using tank.

They do in fact exist and some, esp IF and EF familiar using characters thrive.

QBOddBird April 9 2009 12:54 AM EDT

Put it this way - if there was an item that could knock out 90% of a mage's damage by itself, even if it took 5-6 rounds to do so, not counting armor or AMF or any of that...would you use it? Would you consider that overpowered?

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 12:56 AM EDT

well here's something for you: the ONLY people pulling that kind of reduction are minons like LR who have 10M str and massive exbows. To put that kind of a weapon on that heavy a xp concentrated character is expensive and is a major sacrfice of being able to do huge damage with a SoD, MsK, or ELB.

Umm I'm not too positive about that paperweight thing. I think for an exbow to be at all effective it requires massive investment in other minions in terms of weapons and tat's. I tried putting an exbow on my single minion at the beginning of my NCB and honestly I got OWNED fighting tanks.

and that leads me to something I would like to see done with the *bows. I dont' think they need a massive nerf but rather an improved effect curve because from what I can tell they are by far the most useful at big MPR's on big char's with high NW.

They are not nearly as effective lower on down the MPR ladder

QBRanger April 9 2009 12:57 AM EDT


I would use such an item in a heartbeat, even if it only did 10k damage a hit.

As would quite a lot of tanks out there.

QBRanger April 9 2009 12:59 AM EDT

With 3M strength, Iconics exbow draines 10M strength in 1 hit for 1 damage.

And yes, at the lower regions of the game, due to ENC issues, the exbow is not that powerful. But once you can carry a x3k one, watch out.

three4thsforsaken April 9 2009 12:59 AM EDT

I agree. I personally have used a huge an x3000 exbow on an enchanter to completely wipe out tanks in the past. Didn't feel fair.

I can't see how this game benefits with a weapon like the exbow.

QBOddBird April 9 2009 1:00 AM EDT

That sounds fine to me, Fatality - make a NW:PR link on it, so that the bigger your character, the more X you need for an effect; the smaller your character, the less X needed. And lessen the potential effect.

But consider this: the size of NS' Exbow is x4000. That's under 80M to knock out tanks. If I could make a Mageshield - even with all the restrictions on it - that was capable of knocking out 100% of DD damage with only an 80M investment, I'd not only have it by now, everyone else on CB would and there would be only tanks.

Your solution sounds good, as Exbow becomes superbly powerful as tank size increases and is rather weak down at less than 100k MPR; make a curve, reduce the effect, make it useful for everyone instead of worthless at the bottom and unstoppable at the top.

But regardless of how worthless it is at the bottom, that doesn't justify it being unstoppable at the top.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 1:04 AM EDT

that's the problem I don't like about everyone complaining about the exbow: sure I agree draining 10M str in a single hit is unfair but honestly it is the farthest thing from unstoppable against any mage.

Also keep in mind while some people compare the MsK to the exbow they are inherently different in that a tank can easily become OP'd (vectoidz) through USD spending while it is much harder for a mage to do so.

Mages do not need the same threat to them that tanks do.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 1:07 AM EDT

Hello's familiar's Magic Missile hit Homicidal Maid [732790]
Hello's shot flew past Homicidal Maid
Homicidal Maid shot shmeeee with Dark Strength [164777]
Hello looks weaker!
Hello absorbs damage [164777]
Homicidal Maid shot shmeeee with Dark Strength [151197]
Hello looks weaker!
Hello absorbs damage [151197]

shmeeee hit Homicidal Maid [709752]
Hello's familiar's Magic Missile hit Homicidal Maid [730446]
Homicidal Maid shot shmeeee with Dark Strength [165348]
shmeeee looks weaker!
Hello absorbs damage [165348]
Homicidal Maid shot shmeeee with Dark Strength [171825]
shmeeee looks weaker!
Hello absorbs damage [171825]
R.I.P. Homicidal Maid

K two hits reduced my hello minion from 600k to -50k and two hits reduced my shmee minion from 3.8M to 20k

could someone explain to me how the drain works because I certainly don't see this -10M drain?

QBOddBird April 9 2009 1:08 AM EDT

Of course the Exbow isn't effective against a mage, it is an anti-tank weapon...what did you expect?

I miss how this makes the Exbow any less effective against tanks. The POTENTIAL to drain that much strength is entirely unfair, as you say yourself.

I agree, you can't really compare the MsK to the Exbow. The MSK targets mages and damages them; the Exbow targets tanks and nullifies them.

Surely you admit that it is at least in need of some alteration, no?

QBOddBird April 9 2009 1:09 AM EDT

Fatality, it just nullified 2 tanks in 2 rounds...what am I supposed to be looking for here again?

three4thsforsaken April 9 2009 1:09 AM EDT

Your missing the point. Should tanks be an unviable choice because of the exbow? Should they just lose or should they be balanced with mages?

There should never be an end-all solution for anything in this game. Exbow owns tanks with just one hit. Mageseeker not so much. Train 300k in PL and you can contain the vast majority of MgK hits against a mage, and your mage can still strike back for a win.

QBRanger April 9 2009 1:10 AM EDT

And again,

The reason we do not have every tank using one is that most know it is overpowered and unbalanced,

I would have certainly used one on Koy, however I knew it was way unbalanced.

We do not want to make one only to have another VB fiasco.

And imagine again a mage bow that did the same effect to DD spells.

We had so much railing on the poor MgS about its 50% DD reduction to the one minion type who can use it, with all its restrictions. And yet we have an item that can neutralize any tank in 1 hit if high x enough.

I have seen many a post about how Jon wants characters to be a mixture of tank and mage. However, I see no place in any post or any posted chat where he states that. It is an Urban Legend I tell ya. So please stay away from that discussion in this thread.

Why should we not be able to play a pure tank or pure mage? There is nothing that can completely neutralize a mage like the exbow. Yes AMF is there, but you need a level 100x time to get 100% neutralizaion.

And to add to the discussion. When Koy used a massive EC that lowered Iconic's tank to the negative strength, his exbow still drained my tank of all 10M strength in 1 hit if it did 1 damage. If it did 0 damage it did nothing.

That is a very poor all or nothing type of occurrence. How is that good for the game?

I am not saying it should not drain strength, but it should in a smaller amount. As lowering strength does lower damage dealt.

Do you not believe lowering 600k a hit to 80k in 5 hits is good enough? I have no complaints about that degree of leech. However 1 hit=10M str loss is insane.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 1:15 AM EDT

oh I agree however I believe a much better explanation of this 1 damage 10M str drop is needed please see my numbers above. His two hits dropped me by 600k on one and 3.8 on the other...explain me that especially given that he has more str (10M) than NS and his exbow is over 3500x

QBRanger April 9 2009 1:16 AM EDT

As far as I know the strength drain is as follows:

Based upon the learned strength of the user. Unaffected by strength boosting items. I do not know if the TOAs added strength increases the leech.

Based upon the x of the weapon. Somewhere between x3500 and 4000 is the maximum needed for 100+% strength drain.

Unaffected by Ethereal Chains.

Unaffected by AC on the defender or the damage done. IE: doing 10k or 100k damage does the same amount of leech for the given weapon/user strength.

If you do no damage it does no drain. Possible only if you have Ethereal Chains and some degree of AC. EC to drive the attacker strength below 0 and AC to nullify the base damage it does, even with a negative strength.

QBOddBird April 9 2009 1:19 AM EDT

"oh I agree however I believe a much better explanation of this 1 damage 10M str drop is needed"

Explanation: When Ranger's former character Koyaanisqatsi had 10M STR, NS's Exbow dropped it down to zilch, even when he tried using AC and EC to reduce it to 1 damage.

There's not much more to the explanation than that. :P

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 1:20 AM EDT

does anybody out there have a char they could unretire and retrain with say 3M dex and 10,000 str and see what the drain is from their exbow? I don't have such a char or I would do it myself

QBRanger April 9 2009 1:20 AM EDT


When I was running Koy and had an EC with over 5M effect I would drive Iconics strength well below 0.

My tank at the time had over 10M strength.

And yet, with 1 hit for 1 damage my tanks strength went to -100k or less.

At the time that exbow was about x3500 and his tanks strength was about 2.5M.

There has been no change to the exbow since that time.

Yes, that is one example, an extreme one, but still shows the possibility of what it can do.

And now there are more than 1 exbow out there doing similar drains.

Perhaps not in 1 hit, but certainly as you can attest, in two.

Rawr April 9 2009 1:21 AM EDT

"does anybody out there have a char they could unretire and retrain with say 3M dex and 10,000 str and see what the drain is from their exbow? I don't have such a char or I would do it myself"

I think it has been stated multiple times that the drain is based on the X, not on the damage it deals..

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 1:22 AM EDT

fair enough I wanted to see if it based at all on str because if not then as long as you have enough str to register even 1 damage then there is no need to train more.

QBRanger April 9 2009 1:22 AM EDT

And here are the past threads I have made out this subject, with examples of the drains:


Fatil1ty April 9 2009 1:32 AM EDT

alright I am in agreement...a change is necessary however I don't believe that a change of great magnitude is necessary given it's specialized nature.

How bout this:

make the ax/ex bows scaled just like any other weapon and make it relative the *effective* str of the shooter that is AFTER EC not just trained.

QBOddBird April 9 2009 1:36 AM EDT

Now we've got some ideas flowing :D

iBananco [Blue Army] April 9 2009 2:11 AM EDT

"Again, imagine if the Mageseeker bow drained all the DD ability of a mage with 1 hit for 1 damage."
Dear god, yes, yes, yes, yes, please.

Brakke Bres [Ow man] April 9 2009 3:25 AM EDT

If you don't like to be hit with a physical type weapon train evasion...

ow wait

buy big db's...

ow wait

aah nvm

Wizard'sFirstRule April 9 2009 3:29 AM EDT

I think DX based CTH can reduce your CTH to 0 regardless of your PTH on the ExBow, am I correct? You still need lots of DX to hit those tanks in the first place.

three4thsforsaken April 9 2009 4:16 AM EDT

^ erm, no. PTH is calculated after dex chance to hit, therefore a +100 exbow always hits unless DBs or evasion is involved.

{WW]Nayab [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 5:24 AM EDT

Why is it that you guys always seem to find the most unbalanced parts of the game so often?

smallpau1 - Go Blues [Lower My Fees] April 9 2009 5:46 AM EDT

Funny thing that tells me the economy of CB has no idea what's going on, Exbows have been cheap since the beginning of CB2. Every other rare ranged weapon is more expensive than the exbow in auctions.

{Wookie}-Jir.Vr- April 9 2009 5:49 AM EDT

I'm not 100% familiar with the exbow's numbers or how the current drain formula works, but I'm not seeing these insane drains that people are talking about.

In a quick fight with 'god'
Dark Strength [4x3501] (+150) worth $72,512,601 owned by LightningRaider (God)

(10m+ str)

He beat me in three rounds. Round one he triple shot my Hal, and round two he triple shot my tank.


Now both my Hal and my tank had roughly -530k Str... Add the 20k str each have that's roughly a drain of 550,000 strength in three hits.


183,000 Strength drained per hit.

Considering he has 10m STR behind, and one of the largest exbows in the game, under 200k a hit (drain AND DAMAGE) doesn't seem terribly overpowered to me.

Maybe there is something I'm missing or not taking into account here, but I'm not wasting another BA to look further into it. =)

Rubberduck[T] [Hell Blenders] April 9 2009 5:49 AM EDT

I agree with the OP. I've been in agreement for almost 3 years...

Rubberduck[T] [Hell Blenders] April 9 2009 5:53 AM EDT

Small low level ex/ax are pretty poor, hence the prices. The linear x and cost and % drain per x is what causes imbalance at higher levels. I believe the obvious nerf potential has put off more people upping them to huge levels.

Sickone April 9 2009 6:01 AM EDT

Let's just also have a MAGESLAYER CROSSBOW.
It would follow the exact same rules the Executioner and Assassin's Crossbows do (with regards to drain and targeting).
But unlike the EXbow or the AXbow, it would target and drain the minion with the most DD.

:evil laughter:

iBananco [Blue Army] April 9 2009 6:51 AM EDT

"Now both my Hal and my tank had roughly -530k Str... Add the 20k str each have that's roughly a drain of 550,000 strength in three hits.


183,000 Strength drained per hit."
That's because it's a percentage-based drain.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 8:07 AM EDT

Since switching to Halidon a while back, I got the hard lesson on exbow at that time. At one point I was beating Conundrum -- all he had to do was strap on a Hal to make the difference back to wins (novice admitted the absolute cheapness of that. *smile*).

Yesterday I had to remove demolition man from my list as well, an exbow being the difference there again (one hit took half of my Hal's damage output away each round). I'm at 6.2 million total power and he's at 4.2 million, so even if you considered all my DM worthless (he does have AS/GA, just not sure how big they are), I should still have the power advantage.

I don't have any ideas on how to change it, just not make the drain so dramatic, I guess. I've never really understood fully how the specialty exbows do their thing or how they can drain so much with one scratch...

Rubberduck[T] [Hell Blenders] April 9 2009 8:20 AM EDT

Caveat - my memory is somewhat fuzzy and I am not as fully informed as to CB changes as in the past. This is what I think.

The bows used to drain a % of ST/DX per x, something tells me it was .3 per per x, not sure, plus some constant amount which was pretty negligible past a few k mpr. Sometime after the linear x change Jon reduced the drain by 1/11, then fairly recently increased it by 20%.

NS did some testing which showed the drain was also related to ST, not sure if this is trained or post equipment/ED, pretty sure he said the ST added by ToA didn't help. I think I disputed the ST - drain link, but it seems logical and I think it is accepted this is the case.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 8:27 AM EDT

The drain is most assuredly more than 1/11th * 1.20 = 0.1090, or about 11%. It was more like 40-50% when I was fighting demolition man yesterday.

It was also only doing something like 40K damage to my Hal for each single shot that hit it. That tells me the minion firing the exbow barely had any dexterity (at least comparatively), and also wasn't that strong.

If STR is in the algorithm, it should at least be like dexterity and only have such an effect if the attacker has far greater STR than the target. Otherwise the exbow is something anyone can just toss on an enchanter and neutralize tanks. And it can't be dispelled or foiled any other way...

Rubberduck[T] [Hell Blenders] April 9 2009 8:36 AM EDT

The wiki has a fairly comprehensive description.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 8:45 AM EDT

The Wiki! Imagine that... *smile* Interesting stuff!

Does the PL part still work? I thought that got changed? My PL minion only has 20 STR, so I guess I should watch and see if the first exbow shot results in the PL minion getting weaker. He would probably be far negative on STR after that first shot... I'm pretty sure my Hal got weaker after the very first round, when the PL part in the Wiki makes it sounds like the first "weakness" should be going to my PL minion.

Demolition Man's tank has around 3.8 million STR (I can never remember if the displayed number is post- or pre- gear augment?). My Hal has STR of 4.1 million. So, even though the Wiki states the relative STR is part of the equation, having more STR than the shooter must not reduce drain much...

I don't think the algorithm is a bad one, and I don't want the exbow to become a joke, but a tweak would be nice.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 8:49 AM EDT

I trained a minor ec to make drain occur on the first hit Sut... and like I said then even a smallish (less NW than my EX at least) pair of dbs on the Hal would solve the problem.

Dark Dreky April 9 2009 9:47 AM EDT

Change is necessary.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 9:49 AM EDT

Won't the exbow still hit the once? That whole "base hit" thing? That's why I haven't bothered with DBs, but I'm probably just high... I'm not going to invest in gear just to maybe win half the time or somesuch.

Still, it is something I should at least try out! Plus maybe some Evasion!

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 9:55 AM EDT

Some big DBs do make Master Yoda miss my Hal... So I guess that does work! Nightstrike's huge exbow still plasters me, but I can't really complain about a 128 million-dollar piece of equipment... That thing deserves to work...

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 9:58 AM EDT

The only difference between Yoda's cane and NS's bow in this case is 10pth, and dex. He likely has enough dex to hit you without any plus.

QBRanger April 9 2009 10:18 AM EDT

I wish my 120M NW Mageseeker would guarantee mages being unable to cast effective DD spells in 1 hit. Or at least kill them in 10 hits.

But I do a lousy 350k a hit with 4M strength.

Demigod April 9 2009 10:24 AM EDT

"But I do a lousy 350k a hit with 4M strength."

That's something I haven't found an answer to in Help. How does strength affect bows? Is it even in the damage calculation?

Adios Muchachos April 9 2009 10:57 AM EDT

ya know, i've seen this kind of thread about 5 times in my 7 months...
i personally have never played with the ex/axbows but, if the numbers are showing that
opponent a has 10m str and an elb
opponent b has 10m str and an exbow at say x3500

a casts EC on b for 9.99m str drain
b hits a for 1hp in 1 round and drains a's strength into the negatives

then perhaps a change is needed.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] April 9 2009 11:10 AM EDT

i got curious after reading this to see how evasion worked against exbows. my ncb team can beat iconics if he doesn't hit me with the exbow while if he hits me even once then he wins.

my evasion is at effect post battle stats on my jiggy.

QBRanger April 9 2009 11:21 AM EDT

Evasion was an all or nothing effect vs some high NW exbows.

As you stated, get his once and lose, with all your Jiggy strength lost.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 11:26 AM EDT

dude, that is my experience as well, though not for Conundrum any more -- even if he misses with the exbow every time, I still can't beat him... But I used to. *smile*

demolition man (yesterday) using the exbow was definitely the game changer. Today he doesn't have an exbow and he is back on my fightlist. But novice was right about the DBs -- they can certainly foil the exbow, but they need to be pretty big. So, still annoying to have such a binary element in the gameplay dynamics.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] April 9 2009 11:31 AM EDT

well i meant to post that my evasion is at a 112 effect on post battle stats.

i do still think something is buggy with ranged rounds to hit. most of the time if he hits me it is in the last ranged round which makes sense. once though he hit me in the second ranged round which i am not sure should happen.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 12:16 PM EDT

here are the details of my minion that is beating hubbbell:

Strength: 609,603
Dexterity: 150,000

and an named exbow at x2500 +120..

I can't drain you to negative str I don't believe sut. Even after 5 rounds you still hit for say 80k per hit.

Cube April 9 2009 12:21 PM EDT

That's because your X isn't high enough to be overpowered.

You need a pretty big investment, but after that it will work all the time without DBs. A far smaller investment than negating physical damage with AC.

QBRanger April 9 2009 12:28 PM EDT

Put another 8-10M into the x of that exbow and you will start to drain people into the negatives very easily.

Not too shabby for the investment.

AdminNemesia [Demonic Serenity] April 9 2009 12:38 PM EDT

The ex/ax bow gives something like .028% drain per x. It is a direct amount of % on something with a linear growth. This means at a certain amount of x you get 100% drain no matter what your str and no matter what the opponents str. 1 hit= instant negative str. It basically hits the point where AC once got close to hitting before enc and the changes to it that made it much harder to get 100% invulnerability to tanks. And it can do so much cheaper amount.

If you have less than the 100% drain though. Say for instance your x2500 this will give a drain of about 70% per hit. The only thing your str will effect is the direct drain from the exbow which comes after that % drain. So with your exbow your second hit will only drain 70% of whats left plus the small direct drain. This is why it would take several hits to completely stop the damage with that exbow.

Another big reason why people don't use the exbow very often is because its very binary itself. Until you hit that magic 100% drain or very near it it isn't insanely powerful.

QBRanger April 9 2009 12:50 PM EDT

If you opponent does not use DBs, then you will hit at least 3 times in missile rounds with a +0 exbow.

And if your exbow is x2000, you almost guarantee making any enemy tank powerless by melee rounds.

Of course, DBs are a counter. But this weapon sort of forces you to use them always.

Lord Bob April 9 2009 1:16 PM EDT

As a guy who uses both of the stat draining crossbows, even I agree that they are overpowered.

Here's my solution to the Crossbows problem:
A.) take a flat percentage off the stat. Say 1/33. That's a bit over 30,000 per million.
B.) take a constant amount per X. I say 20.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 1:26 PM EDT

So against someone with 10m str NightStrike's x4000 ex would reduce 380k a hit?

Why not just delete them?

Lord Bob April 9 2009 1:42 PM EDT

The idea is to weaken tank offense. Not obliterate it outright.

kronopolous April 9 2009 2:08 PM EDT

lord bob, that is pretty much nerfing them to useless. dropping a user with 10M str by 380k per hit would do absolutely nothing.

I think that the drain should be maxed at say 70% but x's should be added on a non linear basis. For example a x 5,000 exbow would give the full 70% drain however x's are added the following way:

5M for the first 1000
10M for the next 1000
20M for the next 1000
30M for the next 1000
40M for the next 1000 after that.

therefore it would cost 105M to achieve the full 75% drain.

these are just rough numbers and in my opinion are a little high considering that a 105M investment is before any +'s.


QBRanger April 9 2009 2:10 PM EDT

I believe it should be a log type of drain with a max of 50% per hit.
By log type I mean it gets harder and harder to get to 50% with increasing x and attacker strength.

Have it do a base of 5% then ramp up with the x on the bow and the strength of the attacker.

Perhaps even compare the str of the attacker to the defender.

In this way the drain maximally on a 10M strength will be:

10,000,000 start

5,000,000 1 hit

2,500,000 2 hits

1,250,000 3 hits

625,000 4 hits

312,500 5 hits

To take a tank from 10M to 300k in 5 hits is not too shabby and the tanks damage decreases quite a lot during that time.

As LB says, the idea should be to weaken the tanks attack, not obliterate it.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 2:15 PM EDT

Lowering STR has little to no effect on tank damage output, at least not at the levels you're talking about. At least make suggestions that aren't the equivalent of deleting the damned item.

That being said I'd be all for a max drain of 50% per hit with drain based on damage done and weapon X. This would give back some advantage to heavier tanks and would give EC users the all powerful advantage they so richly deserve.

Lord Bob April 9 2009 2:18 PM EDT

"lord bob, that is pretty much nerfing them to useless. dropping a user with 10M str by 380k per hit would do absolutely nothing."

You know you can upgrade a crossbow past x4000 right? If you want it stronger, pump more cash into it.

Plus, as I said on another thread, I left out the strength-based factor of the crossbows. If 1/33% + 20x is deemed too low, a non-overpowering strength factor should be re-introduced.

"I think that the drain should be maxed at say 70%"

Per hit? That's insanely high. After two or three hits in ranged, were right back to where we were.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 2:18 PM EDT

and then we can move on to solving the issue with elb and hal damage...

Lord Bob April 9 2009 2:22 PM EDT

"To take a tank from 10M to 300k in 5 hits is not too shabby and the tanks damage decreases quite a lot during that time."

That's reducing tanks to 3% of their strength score. I don't think they should be that powerful, even after five hits in ranged.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 2:30 PM EDT

So I think everyone gets that you'd like to see the specialty bows turned into jokes... do you really need to keep gibbering?

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] April 9 2009 2:36 PM EDT

there is a precedent, evasion is pretty laughable at the current time. ;)

AdminTitan April 9 2009 2:37 PM EDT

I got a better plan, just give me a bow that does the same for mages, and you can keep your exbow.

Lord Bob April 9 2009 2:38 PM EDT

"So I think everyone gets that you'd like to see the specialty bows turned into jokes... do you really need to keep gibbering?"

Novice, keep to the actual discussion or shut the heck up. Your arrogance is both annoying and pathetic.

DoS [Demon Forging] April 9 2009 2:40 PM EDT

Haha, if we get a weapon that can do the same to mages then we have a new era of CB.. RoBFBlender

QBRanger April 9 2009 2:42 PM EDT

The Hal and Elb damage output is another thread if you wish to post about it novice.

I will disagree about how over powerful you feel they currently are.

But let us deal with that in another thread please.

Back to the exbow:

I think 50% max drain per hit, based upon weapon x and attackers strength is a decent compromise between overpowered and useless.

I have seen my tanks strength go from 4M to 100k and my damage decrease from 300k a hit to about 50-60k. I can certainly believe things are much more balanced in that scenario rather than the current 1 hit = 10+M drain.

I personally do believe about x4000 on the exbow should give a near max drain combined with a high strength.

Now if we can get Jon and NS on board with this.

Lord Bob April 9 2009 2:42 PM EDT

"Haha, if we get a weapon that can do the same to mages then we have a new era of CB.. RoBFBlender"

Well, we did already have that once back in the days of Evasion Blender. Luckily that was fixed, though I agree that the RBF still needs a direct counter. Like an Elven Shield *grin*.

But that's another discussion. I'll stop hijacking.

QBOddBird April 9 2009 2:46 PM EDT

I think it is pretty indicative that everyone can come to the same conclusion that, despite disagreements on how much, the Exbow really needs some tweaking.

QBRanger April 9 2009 2:48 PM EDT



I tried to make this a decent discussion and not a slam fest.

Please keep things very civil and let us make good recommendations.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 2:49 PM EDT

Pathetic is a continually blindered viewpoint with no hope of escape LB... What you've suggested has been laughed at by both camps, I'm just the only one willing to point it out.

AdminTitan April 9 2009 2:49 PM EDT

"Haha, if we get a weapon that can do the same to mages then we have a new era of CB.. RoBFBlender"

Yeah, I'd still be using my tank, but I just be happy knowing that there's some mages getting screwed too, lol.

QBRanger April 9 2009 2:53 PM EDT

I would love to see the following:

Jon makes a salvage yard for missile weapons.

We see how many people change their weapons for exbows knowing that if they get their proper rebalancing they can change them back.

Or just change the mageseeker bow to a mage crossbow, draining DD levels at the same rate as the exbow drains strength.

Lord Bob April 9 2009 3:03 PM EDT

"I tried to make this a decent discussion and not a slam fest.
Please keep things very civil and let us make good recommendations."

Don't worry, I won't be responding to anymore of his antagonistic slams on me. Let's just keep talking about the crossbows.

I still think that 50% per hit leaves tanks little better at the start of melee then they are now. I just see it as a non-fix.

Obviously people see my 1/33% + 20x as a bit low... at least at the top ranks. But my question is: since crossbows were never changed after the linear damage upgrade switch, were crossbows really ever that useful at the top ranks before the switch? Maybe they aren't supposed to be that powerful at the top.

And yes, my version is intentionally meant to -heavily- nerf the stat drain. Again, my goal here is to reduce the strength of tanks before melee, not to obliterate one's offensive power entirely. Yes, 1.9mill out of 10mill does seem a bit low, but that's why I amended my idea and brought back the strength-based drain segment. The question is: how much? I certainly think anything that brings the drain to 50% per hit is far, FAR too much.

Lastly, a max of 50%, unless I'm reading your version wrong, discourages further upgrades after a certain point. As my version was a linear amount per x, it encourages upgrades past x4000. Personally, I don't think a weapon like that should have a value at which it's no longer necessary to keep pumping cash into it.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 3:03 PM EDT

Another option is not to nerf the exbow per se, but require it to be strapped to a meaningful (tank) minion. In other words, work the STR/DEX into the drain equation more. I have NO problem with the exbow doing what it does, except when what is basically a semi-glorified enchanter is using it to take down a pretty massive tank (my Hal). If it is enough to change the course of a battle entirely, I call that a "take down".

The exbow should be a choice, and not just a net worth choice. It should have to be on a minion that could really fire it. Allowing such a powerful item to be shot by wussy minions is like adding an item to the game that would suddenly make a tank able to shoot fireballs. Or, an item that would let a mage be able to really swing a sword. The exbow is an aberration in that it is a tank-like apparatus that's essentially like firing EC, and it can be used by any minion once it gets big enough. THAT'S the part the bugs me.

And yes, before someone says it, of course I could play the same game and get an exbow. But as I have said before, "can't beat 'em, join 'em" is usually one of the most glaring signs of a potential imbalance.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 3:05 PM EDT

As I may have said before, I don't see any reason why all things between mages and tanks have to be equal. The differences are important to the core structure of the game. This of course means I'm heavily against the idea of making the MsK the Clerics Crossbow and having it drain DD.

How powerful should the specialty bows be? Considering the complete lack of physical offense they offer I can't imagine them doing anything less than crippling any tank on the opponents side.

Is that fair?
Should mages have an additional foil of similar nature to compensate?
How many hits is fair for a tank to be at negative stats?
At what level should the EX do 50% drain?

QBRanger April 9 2009 3:07 PM EDT

Another idea I think that I proposed in the past is to have part of the drain dependent on the strength of the attacker vs that of the defender.

That way an enchanter with 500k strength using a x4000 exbow vs a tank with a 10M strength will not drain very much. But a tank with 10M strength also will drain considerably more.

With a maximum per hit of course.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 3:09 PM EDT

That's just it, nov -- see my previous post.

In all strategies, we know our strengths and weaknesses. But we also assume our opponents are going to have a limited number of choices/slots to work with. if I look at an opponent, I might say, "Hm, he's a tank." Or, "She's a mage", or "They are susceptible to my DM..."

The exbow is the type of thing that one second you win, then the opponent simply goes and gets an exbow and starts winning again. Put it anywhere, doesn't matter. A mage can fire it for goodness sake. I don't think it was coincidence when you went and got an exbow, started beating me again, and said "Yeah, sorta cheap." Granted, you can beat me know even when I dodge all the exbow shots, but that's a whole other issue. Conundrum's just damn good, that's a fact.

As I said above, I don't really have a problem with how powerful an exbow CAN be. I have a problem with how easy it is to strap on and still be that effective.

AdminTitan April 9 2009 3:11 PM EDT

"This of course means I'm heavily against the idea of making the MsK the Clerics Crossbow and having it drain DD."

This was my point, trying to make you feel empathy, but now I'm beginning to think that's impossible.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 3:12 PM EDT

Ranger, I would not put a cap on it in that case.

If you really, really devote to something, both in gear and in MPR, there shouldn't be caps. I mean, especially with the exbow, there is already a built-in pseudo-foil -- it is 100% useless against an all magic opponent.

If someone has a HUGE tank and the biggest exbow in the game, 100 million plus NW, they should reduce my STR a lot. I have no problem with that. It's just like investing massively in EC in that case...

AdminTitan April 9 2009 3:15 PM EDT

"it is 100% useless against an all magic opponent.

If someone has a HUGE tank and the biggest exbow in the game, 100 million plus NW, they should reduce my STR a lot. I have no problem with that. It's just like investing massively in EC in that case..."

You do realize that xbows actually do damage, so they're are not 100% useless, just not as effective, but perfect for a melee tank, along with some ranged damage against mages.

QBsutekh137 April 9 2009 3:20 PM EDT

Yes, Titan, I know they do damage, but not nearly as much as an ELB or an SOD. If a team invests in a huge tank and mainly exbow, they are likely to have trouble against all-magic teams. I'm just trying to say that specificity is already a de facto "cap" of sorts.

Lord Bob April 9 2009 3:29 PM EDT

"Ranger, I would not put a cap on it in that case. If you really, really devote to something, both in gear and in MPR, there shouldn't be caps."

Agreed, which is another reason I'm against a percentage-based upgrade curve and a cap on it. And like I said, it discourages upgrading past the cap.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] April 9 2009 4:32 PM EDT

I am in no way beyond empathy, but I refuse to be timid and accepting of everyone's opinion as equally valid. I understand it's hurts you to see tanks get slapped with a big nasty exbow, I get it. I see it as a trade off for the massive amount of flexibility now afforded to tanks. It's inconceivable that you fail to grasp just how many more options there are for tanks than mages. Heck there are only a handful of real mages even left in game, and yet folks continue to sound the war drums in attempts to make things "fair". The ONE item that forces a tanks choice towards an inconvenient item and people are wailing and gnashing teeth like it's the apocalypse. Come of folks, it's been years that it's been like this. Get the hell over it. You can't just slap on an ex and have it work against anyone, people with evasion, or ec, or dbs all find themselves quite safe from the evil monster known as the exbow. It's a balancing item in and of itself. Sure it could use alteration, many saner folks than myself have made suggestions of how to do so. It in no way belongs in the overpowered as Todd category. At this point I'd like to see it deleted just to prove my point, the specialty bows are an integral part of CB's balance and need to continue to function as a foil and forced choice to use dbs.

Fatil1ty April 9 2009 4:35 PM EDT

all weapons discourage upgrading past the cap LB: if you add anothe 2000 to a x10000 it would do marginally more difference but hardly enough to justify the investment. There is a point where a logical person would find a better use for their money.

The same should apply to the exbow
This thread is closed to new posts. However, you are welcome to reference it from a new thread; link this with the html <a href="/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=002iRo">Let us chat some more about the Exbow.</a>