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Heroes Community > Library of Enlightenment > Thread: The most potent ballista user
Thread: The most potent ballista user
Ecoris
Ecoris


Promising
Supreme Hero
posted June 01, 2006 11:10 PM
Edited by Ecoris at 23:19, 01 Jun 2006.

The most potent ballista user

In the thread "Who is the best hero of HMM 3 the following question appeared:

"Who is the most potent Ballista user, Orrin or Gurnisson?".
Or: "Is archery speciality better than ballista speciality?"

Who is capable of dealing the most damage? Orrin because of his archery speciality or Gurnisson because of his high attack skill and ballista speciality?

I am in no way trying to say that one hero is better than the other in general.

The two heroes will probably not have the same attack skill. This is important.
Gurnisson starts with 4. The first 9 level-ups (until he's reached level 10) he's got 60% chance to receive +1 Attack.
Orrin startts with 2. The first 9 level-ups he's got 45% chance to receive +1 Attack.
After that both have 30% chance to recieve +1 Attack. So the difference is expected to be the same when their levels increase further.

Expected Attack skill at level 10, no boosters artis etc.:
Gurnisson: 4 + 9*0.60 = 9.4
Actually 9 or 10 are equally likely values; let the random variable X denote the number of times out of 9 that Gurnisson receives +1 to his attack when he advances a level. Then P(X = 5) = P(X = 6) = 0.2508

Orrin: 2 + 9*0.45 = 6.05
Therefore we'll assume that it's 6.

Since we're looking for the most potent Ballista user we'll also assume that both heroes have expert archery as well as expert artillery.
Thus, the question is: Which is better, Orrin's archery bonus or Gurnisson's ballista bonus + his higher attack skill.
In order to answer this question we must first know how the archery bonus and double damage adds up. The general formula for damage calculation suggests that the ballista's total damage is calculated as (assuming expert artillery and expert archery):

Base damage (BD) = 2-3 * (Attack skill + 1)
Damage = BD + BD * ( 1 + 0,50 + 0,05*(Ballistas attack skill - Defenders defense skill) )
(i.e BD + bonuses: double damage, expert archery and the 5% per point when Att > Def)

That means that expert archery + expert artillery will not deal 2*1.5 = 3x damage per shot but rather 2 + 0.5 = 2.5x. That damage bonuses are added and not multiplied is of course common knowledge.
I tested this here are the results:

Gurnisson
Ballistass attack skill: 10 + 9 + 2
Defender's defense skill: 1 (peasent)
Expert Archery
Base damage: 2-3 * (9 + 1) = 20-30
Attack bonus: 0.05 * (21 - 1) * BD = 20-30
Archery bonus: 0.50 * BD = 10-15
Total: 50-75
And this was would the display read when i highlighted the peasents during the ballistas turn. The peasent was within 10 tiles of the ballista.
I attakced the peasents and the ballista dealt 'double damage': 94
Double damage would be 50-75 + 20-30 = 70-105, not 100-150.

Notice: Gurnisson's speciality increases the attack skill of the ballista, but it doesn't increase the base damage.

Next we need to know how Gurnisson's speciality works. Wub once made a post concerning Creature specialists which can be found here. I don't know how accurate it is so I tested it:
Gurnisson
Level  Att/Def bonus
___1_______0
___2_______0
___3_______0
___4_______0
___5_______1
___6_______1
___7_______1
___8_______1
___9_______1
__10_______1
__11_______1
__12_______1
__13_______1
__14_______1
__15_______2
__16_______2
__17_______2
__18_______2
__19_______2
__20_______2
__21_______2
__22_______2
__23_______2
__24_______2
__25_______3


i.e. at each 5th level starting from level 5 he receives +1 Att and Def each 10th level. (Not like the game describes it: "Increases the Attack and Defense skill of any Ballista for each level attained after 4th level.")

To make things simple, let us assmue that the defending unit's defense is 16 ( = Attack skill of Orrin's ballista at level 10). We may also ignore the damage range 2-3 and only look at Attack skill + 1.

Level 10

Orrin
BD: 7 (his attack skill + 1)
Ballista's Attack skill: 16
Archery bonus: 0.75
Attack bonus: 0.00
Double damage bonus: 1.00
Total damage bonus: 1.75
"Damage" (i.e. before the 2-3 points of damage is applied): 7 + 7*1.75 = 19.25

Gurnisson
BD: 10 (or 11)
Ballista's Attack skill: 20 ( = 10 + 9 + 1)
Archery bonus: 0.50
Attack bonus: 0.20 ( = (20 - 16)*0.05 )
Double damage bonus: 1.00
Total damage bonus: 1.70
"Damage": 10 + 10*1.7 = 27.0

So Gurnisson is better at level 10. His ballista deals a total of 54-81 points of damage per shot. Orrin's deals 38-57. (Integer round-offs may alter this slightly). However we can just compare the values 19.25 and 27.0.

From this point on their Attack skills increase at the same rate per level. Each 10th level Gurnisson will increase the ballista's Attack skill by another point increasing the total damage bonus by an additional 0.05 (average: 0.005 per level). Orrin however will increase his archery bonus by 0.025 per level. Sooner or later he will catch up with Gurnisson. This is very complicated. If we give Gurnisson a +0.1 bonus to his ballista's attack instead of the +1 for each ten levels and assume that both heroes have their attack skill increased by 0.30 per level (30% chance to receive +1 attack per levelup) it reduces to an equation of second degree.
With no boosters or artis etc Orrin will deal more damge than Gurnisson somewhere around the levels 35-37. This is of course not realistic. Assume that boosters and artis have increased their attack skill by 10. Orrin will be better around levels 28-29. If their attack skill is increased by 20 Orrin will become better around level 24.

Notice: The main reason why it takes so long is not Gurnisson's speciality but the fact that he's a barbarian. Attack skill has the most influnce on the ballistas damage. A few points will make a huge difference. The ballista speciality doesn't help much. It's only good because you start with a ballista and the artillery skill. +1 to attack and defense every 10th level is a joke.

Conclusion: Orrin is the most potent ballista user. However, at the time when he reaches his full potential the Ballista is more or less worthless. Any barbarian will be better during the start of the game simply because of their high attack skill.

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God2
God2


Adventuring Hero
Your benevolent deity
posted June 02, 2006 12:33 AM
Edited by God2 at 00:43, 02 Jun 2006.

Nice post. I've always liked the ballista in this game.

There's one minor mistake in your calculations though:

The Barbarian class has 55% chance to get attack skill, while the Knight class has 35% chance, which means that Orrin would have a lower skill with his ballista on average than calculated here.

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Ecoris
Ecoris


Promising
Supreme Hero
posted June 02, 2006 11:07 AM

Quote:
There's one minor mistake in your calculations though:

The Barbarian class has 55% chance to get attack skill, while the Knight class has 35% chance
No, look in the manual p. 34. It says: Barbarian 2-9: 60%. Knight 2-9: 45%. From that point on it's 30% for both classes. Where did you get those numbers?
Russ posted a table of primary skill probabilities here. They contain a third suggestion: Barbarian: 55%, Knight: 40% and after that 30% for both classes.
I believe the manual is correct. No readme files or the manuals of SoD or AB says the values have been changed.
____________

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God2
God2


Adventuring Hero
Your benevolent deity
posted June 02, 2006 11:42 AM
Edited by God2 at 11:47, 02 Jun 2006.

My data is from the HCTRAITS.TXT, a data file inside the main files of the game, which decides the probabilities of each hero class for learning atk, def, pow, wis, and secondary skills. Modifying this file will affect the game. I have tried it already.

According to this file:

Barbarians have: 55, 35, 5, 5
Knights have: 35, 45, 10, 10
____________
www.shoryuken.com


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Ecoris
Ecoris


Promising
Supreme Hero
posted June 02, 2006 11:52 AM

Quote:
My data is from the HCTRAITS.TXT, a data file inside the main files of the game, which decides the probabilities of each hero class for learning atk, def, pow, wis, and secondary skills. Modifying this file will affect the game. I have tried it already.

According to this file:

Barbarians have: 55, 35, 5, 5
Knights have: 35, 45, 10, 10
Hmm, I've never messed with the internal files of H3 and I haven't tested the values myself.
How do you access/view these files? I'm interested in knowing.

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God2
God2


Adventuring Hero
Your benevolent deity
posted June 02, 2006 12:05 PM
Edited by God2 at 12:08, 02 Jun 2006.

It is actually quite simple. Just be sure to have a backup of your data files. Also be aware that at some point I had to replace all files in my HOMM3 directory to reset the stats. Just moving in new data files was not enough by some reason.

Go here: http://www.archangelcastle.com/download/logh3index.php

Download the following files:

ModHomm3 -> Used for extracting data from the data files.
TextEdit -> Program that allows for easy editing of TXT files.
Lodedit  -> Program used for integrating your modified files into the game.

Be aware of one thing though: It seems that the changes to creatures, and probably other changes that were made (if any)in SOD are not stored in the data files, but probably in the game executive.
The file you will be extracting TXT files from will be H3ab_bmp.lod, but the creatures text file you get from it will not reflect the balance changes made to Angels, Lizardmen, Cerberi, and Serpent Flies. Remember to fix those to current stats before you integrate any changes, or else you will revert them to how they were before SOD.

To integrate files into the game, place the file you want to integrate in the same folder as Replace.bat and Lodedit.exe, then "edit" Replace.bat, and write "lodedt @(name of file you wish to integrate).
Then run replace.bat. This will take about 1 second.

Examples would be: lodedt @CRTRAITS.TXT, or lodedt @BUILDING.TXT

____________
www.shoryuken.com


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Ecoris
Ecoris


Promising
Supreme Hero
posted June 02, 2006 12:12 PM
Edited by Ecoris at 12:21, 02 Jun 2006.

Thanks. Another way to spend countless hours with HoMM3

EDIT: EditPad Lite is also a very good and free alternative to the awful MS Notepad. Download it at the bottom of this page.

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russ
russ


Promising
Supreme Hero
blah, blah, blah
posted June 02, 2006 05:46 PM

Hmmm... remind me to look up this file, test it and modify the skill % chances thread.

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God2
God2


Adventuring Hero
Your benevolent deity
posted June 02, 2006 10:16 PM
Edited by God2 at 22:17, 02 Jun 2006.

One thing I did to make an interesting change to the gameplay, was to set the values after level 10 to the same as the values before level 10. Wizards and Warlocks become extremely powerful casters, but wimps at warfare, while barbarians become walking brutes, but magically inept.
____________
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