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Thread: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

  1. #1
    Olympian God Violos's Avatar
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    Lightbulb [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    I believe it's safe to say that the Scatter Shots are among the most overpowered skills out there, and a big contribution to making bowies the unbalanced class they are.

    And while a hunter can amass a lot of physical and pierce damage on the arrow itself, having each hit/puncture scatter about 10 fragments of 200 pure piercing damage -increased many times- around is what really devastates enemy groups.

    (If you want to see by how much, try it on a speedy low-damage bow.)

    Now the balancing could be applied to the scatters, the pierce damage boni on the auras, or both.
    But anonther idea just crossed my mind: Change the damage type to bleeding.


    First of all, even if the game is not logical, it does make much more sense:
    While a focussed thrust like an arrow or a spear is meant to pierce armor, flying bits and splinters are what it should be best at protecting against. Unprotected areas, otoh, would be ripped open and bleed.

    Secondly, it caps the damage, because it is harder to reach astronomical DPS just by concentrating on piercing. Instead the hunter would be required to develpo his bleeding skills to be good against groups, which is to be encouraged anyhow.

    And third and most importantly, DPS does not stack with itself.
    While it may be objected that someone already bleeding is in fact not protected against bleeding even more, this does prevent the effect that larger groups make a single arrow so much stronger. - Some Satyr being hit by the shrapnel from the guy in front, his own, and the one behind him is what causes the mass deaths, because one arrow "explodes" multiple times without losing power.


    So if every monster hit by one or more fragments would bleed for a few seconds (for the same damage, which is to be adjusted), this would retain the hunter's capability to fight groups but prevent the "piercing volley instant group explosions" we are seeing now.
    At the same time, it would give him a little bit of attrition gameplay, and encourage damage diversification, while staying true (or even moving closer) to the class' style.

  2. #2
    Olympian God ASYLUM101's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    Heh, I'm sorta using this for my own mod. I've kept scatter but instead I'm using "Obsidian Arrowheads" which were used by various cultures like the Apaches because of their known capability to explode into tiny fragments upon striking a target, so technically, that is the REAL scatter shot arrow, however, it didn't pierce as the TQ one does. The true scatter shot was as you described it, a pure bleeding weapon.

    Also, from several tests I've noticed, bleeding damage stacks. If you cause a target to bleed for 3 seconds, and then apply a net(with barbs), he will bleed faster, and the "bleed" timer isn't reset as it would with a debuff or something. Another thing that I thought was funny: A bow shot can puncture through the first guy and hit the second and third guy behind him, and with sufficient bleeding gear, you can cause the second and third guys to die before the first because (for some reason) they take more bleeding damage. Dunno what it is, I just found that out yesterday when farming animationless gorgons.

  3. #3
    Olympian God Violos's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    That is strange. Even if smaller monsters were not being hit by their own "scatters", there should be no difference between the first and the last.

    I haven't used bleeding very much, so I simply assumed (shame on me) that it would work like burn DOT.
    In that case, what you are seeing would be the stronger bleeding from your net taking preference over the weaker effect, while both are active. Are you absoluely sure it adds?

    Though even if it did, the other points still apply.


    I'm using "Obsidian Arrowheads" which were used by various cultures like the Apaches because of their known capability to explode into tiny fragments upon striking a target, so technically, that is the REAL scatter shot arrow, however, it didn't pierce as the TQ one does.
    Interesting. I was thinking more about the power it brings, but the simple fact that an arrow explodes and pierces (and then explodes again) is of course another "common sense bug".

    It may go beyond balancing, but if it was up to me I would make the hunter choose between either piercing or scatter shot arrows - much like AP versus hollow point ammunition. Consequently, AP would be better against armored targets (maybe add some bonus, like higher pierce conversion), while arrows like yours are better against groups.
    So basically, both piercing and scatter shot become active LMB skills to choose from. In turn, marksmanship can become a passive enhancing both.
    I'll try that.


    OT:
    At which point do changes have effects like some mastery mods, as in stripping a char of all skillpoints? Are changes like the above still "safe" to do?

  4. #4
    Olympian God ASYLUM101's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    I think, provided the skill remains completely the same, name, skill type, location, it should work fine. I'm not entirely sure though. Because, as you know the fanpatch changes some skills and if those patches had cause characters to lose skill points, we'd hear about it. AND there were some drastic changes, like spellbreaker, which initially was a projectile where now it's an instant aoe at a location.

    The bleeding definitely needs more testing, I only just started messing with it. But it definitely seemed that way. I'd have to set up a monster with a constant HP/armor/resistance value.

  5. #5
    Olympian God Violos's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    True, good point.

    I did some testing - bleeding does not stack. Piercing fragments do, but only sometimes:
    An enemy next to your main target can be hit by several scatters at once, and takes their combined damage. You can see this in the numbers because I gave them a damage range. (It just doesn't happen that often, which might explain your Gorgon phenomenon.)
    The main target itself, however, will not be hit by any scatters. The modifier adds one fragment worth of damage to the arrow, but that's it.



    P.S.: You can also see how even a lvl 60 char in legendary still gets a substantial amount of his damage from scatters - though volleys start to rival their power by then.

  6. #6
    Olympian God ASYLUM101's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    Hm. It's weird cause some targets I shot took more bleeding damage than others. *shrug* I really dunno. Perhaps Gouge triggered. And, the scatters are not a possible option because I purposefully left scattershot out of my build to rely purely on bleeding.

    I must say, it's better than expected, but not really awesome. Using a bonecharmer, bows can achieve decent damage with the bleeding, spears are the safest thanks to the shields you can wield, and using a dreadful staff... well it's actually pretty good if you can get the mage gear to support it, which is hard. +3 to all skills grants -107% bleed resists and something like 50% bleed damage from aoth... anyway, I'm ranting. Done.

  7. #7
    Olympian God Violos's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    it's better than expected, but not really awesome
    That is where we come down to the real problem, which applies to most skills with non-scaling damage: too strong early, or too weak later.
    The only way against this is making the skill get better with either stats or exclusively high-end gear (like -recharge gear for many spells). Or difficulty, but that's more of a workaround.

    That is why in order for this change to work as I planned, bleeding itself would have to be changed (as was proposed) to scale with an attribute, like dexterity. And not only on a direct weapon hit, but also on "spells" like the scatters.

    Though I'm not locked on bleeding.
    If I wanted to enforce the "armored/unarmored enemies" aspect of puncture vs. scatter shots, for example, physical would be the way to go.
    That, again, does not scale on skills. But in turn, good physical increases (Immortal Rage, Athena's) are harder to acquire.

    Maybe a physical/bleeding mixture.
    I have to think on this a bit more. Any ideas are welcome.

  8. #8
    Olympian God ASYLUM101's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    The problem with tying bleeding damage to a stat is that... well it simply can't be done. Since there's no formula set to calculate bleeding damage like there is for physical and elemental, you can't apply it to the game's engine. Same problem applies to poison, and probably another that I'm forgetting.

    And it's kinda tough to rebalance all the damage types to scale properly. You'd have to go over all the affixes, the charms, relics, and the few buffs that aren't very well scaled.

  9. #9
    Olympian God Violos's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    No chance? The inner workings of the engine are still beyond my scope... but ther must be some way.

    You can just give % boni for difficulties (in playergamebalanceattributes), but those would add to those from gear/skills and therefore diminish their effect. If they could at least be made multiplicative, that would be a step in the right direction.

    And it certainly isn't easy to balance it all... I'd say we never can. But correcting the most obvious cases (like this skill) is a good start.

  10. #10
    Demigod Asheron's Avatar
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    Re: [Hunting] Scatter Shots

    Just a quick question to make sure - Scatter Shot is actually a "spell" that is cast each you hit, right? It doesn't transfer any effects like poison, confuse, burn and elemental damage? It only can be buffed by +%piercing damage,am I correct?
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