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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Yakk's Avatar

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    Lightbulb [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    Sure Strike (Fighter at-will 1) and Careful attack (Ranger at-will 1) are both ... rather sub-par powers.

    Twin Strike (Ranger at-will 1) is viewed to be too good.

    So here is an attempt to rework all 3. I like the flavor of the results myself!

    Twin Strike + Ranger At-Will attack 1
    Martial, Weapon
    Standard Action
    Melee or Ranged weapon
    Requirement: You must be wielding two melee weapons or a ranged weapon.
    Targets: One or Two Creatures
    Attack: Strength vs. AC (melee; main weapon) or Dexterity vs. AC (ranged)
    Hit: 1[W] damage, and make a secondary attack against a different target.
    Miss: Make a secondary attack against the same target.
    Secondary Attack: Strength vs. AC (melee; off-hand weapon) or Dexterity vs. AC (ranged)
    Secondary Hit: 1[W] damage
    Increase damage for both primary and secondary attacks to 2[W] at 21st level.

    Spoiler
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    You make an attack against the first target. If you miss, you get to try again. If you hit, you must instead attack a different target with your second attack.

    This generates a pretty reliable hit on the first target, the same total average damage as the 4e base power, but doesn't let you "alpha strike" quite as strongly.


    Careful attack + Ranger At-Will attack 1
    Martial, Weapon
    Standard Action
    Melee weapon or Ranged Weapon
    Requirement: You must be wielding two melee weapons or a ranged weapon.
    Targets: One creature
    Attack: Strength +3 vs. AC (Melee) or Dex +3 vs AC (Ranged)
    Hit: 1[W]+Wisdom damage

    Increase damage to 2[W]+Wisdom at 21st level.

    Spoiler
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    Before this was a mere +2 to hit, and no bonus to damage. I gave the Ranger wisdom to damage -- this splits the stats needed to use this power, which makes it harder to use, and granted a +3 to hit. Between the both of them, Careful Attack ends up doing a tad more damage on average to the primary target than Twin Strike, but does less damage overall on average...


    Sure Strike + Fighter At-Will Attack 1
    Martial, Weapon
    Standard Action
    Melee weapon
    Targets: One creature
    Attack: Strength vs. AC (Melee)
    Hit: 1[W]+Wis damage
    Miss: Make secondary attack against the same target
    Secondary Attack: Strength +2 vs. AC
    Secondary Hit: 1[W] damage

    Increase damage for both primary and secondary attacks to 2[W]+Wis and 2[W] respectively at 21st level.

    Spoiler
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    In 4e, this was also a sucky power, and it was a clone of Careful Attack. In this version, it starts with a normal attack roll -- Str vs AC -- with no modifiers. If that connects, you get [W]+Wisdom damage. However, if you miss, you get a second attack at +2 that does [W] with no wisdom damage.

    You'll notice this mixes the mechanics of the Twin Strike and Careful Attack. It ends up being just about as good as those powers, but it should feel different in play. It also rolls the Wisdom stat into a Fighter at-will power. (Fighters have Wisdom as one of their key stats, in theory).


    Overall analysis:
    Spoiler
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    With +2 "other" bonus, +3 wisdom, a base 50% chance to hit, a +4 stat bonus, a 5.5 average damage weapon, and a 4.5 average quarry damage, neglecting critical hits, we end up with...

    Twin Strike does +1 damage over a basic attack on average to the main target, and +1.875 to a secondary target. (9 / 1.875 on average).

    Careful Attack does +1.75 damage over a basic attack on average to the main target (9.75 on average).

    Sure Strike does +1.75 damage over a basic attack to the main target (7.5 on average, but Fighters do less damage on basic attacks than Rangers thanks to Hunter's Quarry).

    In comparison, Reaving (Reaping?) Strike does +Str/2 extra damage on average over a basic attack. (Str/4 with a one-handed weapon...)

    So... Twin Strike does the same average damage (but it can only hit a given target once) as it did before. Careful and Sure end up being in the same league as Reaving Strike, average damage-per-attack wise.

    I really should run numbers at "further from level 1" points.


    Anyone care to point out flaws, errors, or imbalances? :-)

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    I don't think twin-strike is too powerfull. If both attacks hit it will do 2[W] damage instead of 1[W]+ability mod. Even with a 1d10 weapon it'll be 11 on average compared to 5.5+ability mod. Even at level 1 that's probably +4 or at least +3. On paragon levels it could well be less powerfull than 1[W]+mod. At epic it gets a bit better again. Still the ranger is a striker so I don't have a problem with it.

    Also the rogue get's sly flourish for 1[W]+dex+cha which is most likely stronger then 2[W].

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    Not bad!

    Like fractic, though, I don't think Twin Strike is too powerful - it's in the top tier of powers, but it's not outright unbalanced. Also, it's much faster to roll two d20s at once than to roll one, check to see if it's a hit, then roll again.

    Your changes to Sure Strike and Careful Attack are balanced, but a bit unusual (basic attacks don't usually use one stat to hit and another for damage, and they have the same problem of requiring an extra roll). My original idea for a quick fix was just to bump up the bonus from +2 to +4, or whatever number gives the right average damage.

    - Saph
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and the final book in the series, Risen, is out as of December 2021. For updates, check my blog!

  4. - Top - End - #4
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    Default Re: [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    Quite honestly, that is a separate discussion. In the spoiler, some math to compare Twin Strike to other attacks, as a delta over a "basic" attack that is (Attribute vs AC) and 1[W]+Attribute damage:

    Spoiler
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    50% hit chance with a +3 prof weapon.

    Sly:
    1[W]+Dex+Cha+Other+Sneak @ 55%
    Sneak: 9
    Other: 2
    Cha: 3
    Dex: 4
    W: 2.5
    = 11.275

    Rogue Basic: (with dex instead of str)
    1[W]+Dex+Other+Sneak @ 55%
    = 9.625

    Sly over Basic: +1.65 damage per round
    4e core Twin over Basic: +2.875 damage per round

    Extra +1 to hit (55% instead of 50% base hit chance):
    Sly +1.025 per round
    Twin +0.96375 per round

    Extra +1 other damage:
    Sly: +0.55 damage per round
    Twin: +1 damage per round

    Rogue Reflex attack (65% chance to hit):
    1[W]+Dex+Other+Sneak @ 65%
    Sneak: 9
    Other: 2
    Dex: 4
    W: 2.5
    = 11.375 per round

    Extra +1 other damage:
    Reflex: +0.65 per round
    Extra +1 to hit (70% chance to hit):
    Reflex: +0.875 per round

    The benefits of each +1 to hit are relatively similar, with Twin Strike being right in the middle. Each +1 to damage scales really well with Twin Strike. And to start with, Twin Strike has a higher average damage boost over an at-will than the Rogue powers.

    Please note that my changes do not reduce the average damage Twin Strike does. It just spreads the damage around a bit.

    If you do leave Twin Strike alone, one would have to boost Careful/Sure strike even more to keep them "in balance" with Twin Strike.


    Re: Saph
    Spoiler
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    Not bad!

    Like fractic, though, I don't think Twin Strike is too powerful - it's in the top tier of powers, but it's not outright unbalanced. Also, it's much faster to roll two d20s at once than to roll one, check to see if it's a hit, then roll again.
    At it happens:
    Roll 2d20. If one hits, it hits the primary. If both hit, one hits the primary and one the secondary. (This does require both to have the same AC, I'll admit).

    Your changes to Sure Strike and Careful Attack are balanced, but a bit unusual (basic attacks don't usually use one stat to hit and another for damage, and they have the same problem of requiring an extra roll). My original idea for a quick fix was just to bump up the bonus from +2 to +4, or whatever number gives the right average damage.
    Well, I wanted to split the mechanics of the two powers -- they are the only two core at-will powers with identical mechanics.

    In addition, Careful Attack has to match or exceed twin-strike average damage on a single target (or, at least, average to-hit chance!). That requires something crazy like +5 to hit (!) on Careful Attack just to match the chances of hitting once -- and meanwhile, twin-strike then makes a 2nd connection about 25% of the time.

    Matching that requires that Careful Attack hits nearly 100% of the time, which is entering into some bad territory.

    By splitting the damage from Twin Strike (but not reducing it), I left some room for Careful Attack. A +3 to hit and wisdom to damage was enough to knock it's average damage over Twin Strike on the primary target by a small margin.

    The amount of boost Careful Attack needed does point out exactly how good twin strike was.

    As I didn't want to clone Careful Attack, I needed slightly different mechanics for Sure Strike. The idea of a miss attack seemed interesting.

    A +3 to hit, two attack rolls, with no-stat-to-damage ends up being enough to make Sure Strike good enough. However, that ended up being, well, too certain (about a 90% chance of connecting!)

    Hmm. Another implementation that is easy to use -- No bonus to hit, 2 attack attempts, wisdom to damage?


    An alternative
    Sure Strike + Fighter At-Will Attack 1
    Martial, Weapon
    Standard Action
    Melee weapon
    Targets: One creature
    Attack: Strength vs. AC (Melee)
    Hit: 1[W]+Wis damage
    Miss: Make secondary attack against the same target
    Secondary Attack: Strength vs. AC
    Secondary Hit: 1[W]+Wis damage
    Increase damage to 2[W]+Wis at level 21.

    Analysis:
    Spoiler
    Show
    7.875 average damage per attack, using +3 wis +2 other damage and 5.5 average damage on the weapon, base 50% hit chance. This is 2.125 higher damage per round on average than a +4 str d10 weapon with +2 other damage doing a basic attack -- ie, better than the original post Sure Strike, but easier to use in play, as the player just rolls 2d20, and connects if either hits...

    Reaping Strike (2H) and Cleave both end up doing +Str/2 average damage over a Basic Attack -- which places this power into the same league. This power is slightly worse than Cleave at killing minions (average of 0.75 per round, instead of 1 per round with Cleave), but better than Reaping Strike.

    Against something with a 25% hit chance...

    Reaping: 3/4*Str damage over basic attack
    Sure Strike: 0.1875*(Weapon+Other) - 0.25*(Str) + 0.5625*(Wis) over basic attack

    Setting Weapon+Other to 7.5, Str to 4, Wis to 3, we get: +2.09375 over Basic Attack with Sure Strike, and +3 over Basic Attack with Reaping.

    So this version of Sure Strike does not dominate either Cleave or Reaping, and it isn't dominated by either... I like it!


    Assuming you use the Base version of Twin Strike, you want Careful Attack to not-suck compared to it. Working on that...
    Spoiler
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    5.5 [W], +2 other damage, +4 stat, +3 wisdom, 50% chance to hit, 4.5 Quarry damage, no crits.

    Twin Strike: 10.875 average per attack

    Our Careful Attack has a +X chance to hit, and does +Y damage above [W]+Other.

    [.5+X/20] * [12 + Y]
    Careful = 6 + XY/20 + 0.6*X + Y/2

    Subtract out Twin Strike:
    XY/20 + 0.6*X + Y/2 = 4.875

    At X = +2 to hit, we have:
    Y*.1 + 1.2 + Y/2 = 4.875
    0.6*Y = 3.675
    Y =~ 6.125

    At X = +3 to hit, we have:
    Y*.15 + 1.8 + Y/2 = 4.875
    Y*.65 = 3.075
    Y =~ 4.73

    At +4 to hit:
    Y*.2 + 2.4 + Y/2 = 4.875
    Y = 2.475/.7
    Y =~ 3.54

    At +5 to hit:
    Y*.25 + 3 + Y/2 = 4.875
    Y =~ 2.5

    So at +2 to hit, you'd have to grant both Wis and (Stat) to damage.
    At +3 or +4 to hit, you'd have to grant just (Stat) to damage.
    At +5 to hit, you'd have to grant Wis to damage.

    All of this is just to match the Twin Strike average damage on a single target, and ignores the advantage that Twin Strike has on killing two minions in a single round.

    If you then compare this power to other classes powers, you see some of the problem. It is as good as a combination of the Rogue vs Reflex attack (Dex vs Reflex, W+Dex to damage) and the Rogue Cha boosted attack (Dex vs AC, Dex+Cha to damage), rolled together.

    I was reluctant to boost Careful Attack that much, and short of weakening Twin Strike somehow, I couldn't figure it out.
    Last edited by Yakk; 2008-08-17 at 02:36 PM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
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    Default Re: [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    Oh I'd be sure to take Sure Strike for my Half-Elf Cleric if this were true (no I dont actually have one of those). And I still kind of like Saphs Idea of increasing the +2 > +4, and keeping it at 1[W]. For those times when you have so many attack debuffs, you don't even want to try a normal roll, or maybe the DM hinted at the creature only having a few HP left.
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    Default Re: [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    Twin Strike doubles your Crit chance, doubles Item Enhancement, Weapon Focus, Sly Hunter, and other damage bonuses, and greatly increases the chance of dealing your Quarry damage. Because of that, its incredibly powerful at dealing damage, matched only by Scorching Burst and Riposte Strike, but being able to concentrate damage better than Burst and at a range better than Riposte Strike.

    As such, Twin Strike is the best At-Will in the game for raw damage.

    Once you reach Level 11 and take Pitfighter, things get out of control. Assuming that you have a +3 weapon by that point (reasonable), have Deadly Quarry and Weapon Focus (reasonable), and are an Elf with 21 Dex and Wis (reasonable), who hits 50% of the time (reasonable), you do the below damage:

    25% of the time: 2 Hits: 1d10+1d10+2d8+10+10
    25% of the time: 1 Hit: 1d10+2d8+10
    25% of the time: 1 Hit: 1d10+2d8+10
    25% of the time: 0 Hit: no damage
    Net damage equals (4d10+6d8+40)/4=22.25 average damage

    22.25 damage on average at level 11 as an At-Will is pretty nifty.

    It gets even more ridiculous when you have a Cleric of Warlord who can buff your damage (Furious Smash adds another 5 to your average damage). Any damage buff counts double for Twin Strike, and has no conditions for getting it, unlike Riposte Strike/Dire Radiance/Hellish Rebuke/Scorching Burst.
    Last edited by wodan46; 2008-08-17 at 02:33 PM.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    Quote Originally Posted by wodan46 View Post
    Twin Strike doubles your Crit chance, doubles Item Enhancement, Weapon Focus, Sly Hunter, and other damage bonuses, and greatly increases the chance of dealing your Quarry damage. Because of that, its incredibly powerful at dealing damage, matched only by Scorching Burst and Riposte Strike, but being able to concentrate damage better than Burst and at a range better than Riposte Strike.
    That's not completely true for the melee version of twin strike. Due to monetary restrictions a ranger probably won't have two equally good weapons.

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    Default Re: [4e] Reworking at-will powers

    A wisdom-less Sure Strike: (this is pretty damn weak, as far as I can tell..)

    Sure Strike + Fighter At-Will Attack 1
    Martial, Weapon
    Standard Action
    Melee weapon
    Targets: One creature
    Attack: Strength+3 vs. AC (Melee)
    Hit: 1[W] damage
    Miss: Make secondary attack against the same target
    Secondary Attack: Strength+3 vs. AC
    Secondary Hit: 1[W] damage
    Increase damage to 2[W] at level 21.

    Note: You may roll both attack rolls, and only have one "hit" if both hit.

    Spoiler
    Show

    Chance of missing with a base 50% chance to hit ends up being 12.25%.

    So 0.8775*(W + Other) =~ 6.58125 per round.
    vs 0.5*(W + Other + Stat) =~ 5.75 per round

    Only a +0.83125 average damage per round over a basic attack. As you can see, this doesn't work very well.


    Another attempt!

    Sure Strike + Fighter At-Will Attack 1
    Martial, Weapon
    Standard Action
    Melee weapon
    Targets: One creature
    Attack: Strength+2 vs. AC, but roll twice for the single attack
    One attack roll hit: 1[W] damage
    Two attack rolls hit: 1[W]+Str damage
    Increase damage to 2[W] and 2[W]+Str at level 21.

    Spoiler
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    .48 * 7.5 + .36*11.5 = 7.74 average damage
    Or about +1.99 over a basic attack.


    That last one is, I think, my current favourite.
    Last edited by Yakk; 2008-08-17 at 02:45 PM.

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