Math Fish

Squirrel
Royal Guardian
Characters
Math Fish (Marksman), Shama Fisha (Water), Accursed Angelfish (Shadow), Logical Loach (Fire)
Platform
PC, Steam
Last edited
The purpose of this thread is to make an attempt at defining the overall problem that the community (as a whole) has with the current stat system. Specifically, why do we find it such a pain to deal with? Before I begin I want to list some terms that I will be using which would benefit greatly from a fixed and agreed upon meaning:

1624038782585.png

  • Pooled Values - the numbers on the left side of the above image (Vitality, Clarity, Savagery, and so on). They are used to determine some amount that gets added to the final value.
  • Final Values - the numbers on the right side of the above image (Health, Mana Efficiency, Critical Chance, and so on). They are calculated from various sources such as pooled values, talents, or abilities.

There are many games out there that utilize pooled stats. I will place some examples in the spoiler below and say that having left and right side stats is absolutely NOT a foreign concept and has been around since even before DnD campaigns.

World of Warcraft
In World of Warcraft, there are a handful of pooled values, one of which is Strength. Here is what it does (WoW source):
1624039686477.png
As you can see, Strength gives melee Attack Power for most classes and increased block damage for some classes with shields. So "melee Attack Power" and "damage block" would be considered final values.

Minecraft
Believe it or not Minecraft has some rather complex statistics ... and I'm not talking about "distance walked" or "creepers killed" :p. The one I want to highlight here is damage mitigation. Look at this formula for damage and tell me Minecraft is always easy to understand (Minecraft source).
1624040053400.png
The final value of "damage mitigation" is that monstrosity in the giant parentheses. It is calculated based on the pooled values "defensePoints" and "toughness" from the target and "weaponDamage" from whatever happens to be hitting that target.

FFXIV
Final Fantasy games in general have a lot of stats. So it doesn't come as a surprise to see formulas and stuff for it. Here I am highlighting HP. In Villagers and Heroes, our health is some base amount plus 5 times our Vitality. In FFXIV, this is how they do it (FFXIV source):
1624040554833.png
All the fancy terms with "Mod" in it are just table values that get plugged into the formula. I'm sure they have their own formulas that determine what they actually are, but ... the point here is that HP (the final value) is calculated from other values (in this case 3 modifiers, your VIT attribute, and that random-looking decimal number).

Dark Souls
Dark Souls is appropriately convoluted. I'll put a snippet here and let you read it for yourself (Dark Souls source):
1624041524123.png
So Strength (the pooled value) affects Attack Power which is scaled based on Weapon Scaling. And low strength will cause things to happen and so does low Dexterity, Intelligence, and Faith. There's a lot of interwoven stuff happening here.

So, many games already have pooled values and final values. The UI (user interface) for these systems varies wildly, though, as if there isn't really any one way that "works" or is better than any other. Yet in all of these other games players seems to be fine playing it, even in games where the systems are orders of magnitude more complex than what we have in Villagers and Heroes. So ... what is the problem? I feel that the vast majority of the problem can be described by considering 3 things:
  1. Demand from Content - There is a strong need to understand how stats work for numerous reasons:
    • they define our character
    • the power difference between understanding and not understanding is staggeringly high
    • a lot of popular content (raids, 95 elders, event zones) demands a mastery of stats (or, at least, a higher mastery than we currently have)
    • people with powerful characters feel powerful and accomplished while people without powerful characters feel weak and like failures
  2. Intuition Barrier - There is a general lack of understanding of stats due to the unintuitive nature of stats.
  3. Information Barrier - People are given enough tools to succeed in main story content, but not enough to begin the path to success beyond that:
    • many values can only be found in user-made forum posts or shared documents
    • consumable buffs and other "stat-enhancing substances" are never explained ... you just craft consumables once in a miss-able side quest
    • there is no introduction to group content of any kind
    • the values that are present give conflicting information to the 99% of players who don't already understand the system
With this all in mind we can define our problem like this:
  • The demand for power and the barriers to power are much greater than the resources available reasonably allow us to achieve.
Note that there is no mention of buffing players, nerfing enemies, or balancing the game. That is because this is not a balance problem: It is a design problem. In short, content was designed without any introduction or explanation of that content. The players are left to figure it out themselves. All we are looking for here is a way to get started on our journey to mastering stats. We don't need a road map or a tour guide, just a random dude to point us in the right direction. To put it in terms of writing a story: We have the plot, climax and dénouement without any exposition. The entire story is ruined because we have no idea what is going on.

As I am still working on potential solutions to this, I will reserve the second post and wait until my idea is fully formulated. In the meantime I would love it if you all would comment on any part of this. The discussion would do the following:
  • let the developers know that this is something we feel is important
  • let the developers (and me) know what it is precisely that keeps us from understanding the stat system
  • encourage me to finish the second post (I may move on to another topic if no one replies :p)
  • get more people involved - Neither I, nor anyone else, has the monopoly on knowledge. Who knows what random comment or question will inspire the next great thing in this game? :)
  • bring up any parts of this discussion that I happened to miss - I miss things sometimes hehe
 

Math Fish

Squirrel
Royal Guardian
Characters
Math Fish (Marksman), Shama Fisha (Water), Accursed Angelfish (Shadow), Logical Loach (Fire)
Platform
PC, Steam
Last edited
RESERVED FOR
  • fully formulated solutions
  • important discussion points



Status Screen

One change I would like to see is a revision of the character screen. There was a valiant attempt at simplifying the old system and tbh ... I apologize for not coming up with this sooner than I did: It may have saved us all a lot of pain and heartache. So, what is the idea?

We use a picture with labels to convey the relevant information to the player. Specifically, I want to remove the pool value and the ">>>" thingy altogether, replacing it with a bar. Here is a trial image to convey what I am trying to create:

1624209952983.png

The new bar contains a lot of information in a small space:
  • Value: This is now much the pool is contributing to the final value. In this hypothetical example, the Value is precisely 18% (or 60% of the maximum value).
  • Effectiveness: This is how effective any future stats will be at the most. As you are 60% of the way to the max, diminishing returns gives a 60% penalty to future pooled stats. This 60% penalty makes the next point in the stat 40% effective.
  • Max Value: This is not explicitly given, but players can derive it from the information given. You may also choose to include this information in any of the following places:
    • to the right of the 18% --> 18%/30%
    • to the right of the bar
    • to the right of the text "Marksman Mastery"
    • as part of a tooltip
  • (Optional feature) Color-coding: Note how the bar is divided into 5 equal sections. The idea was to have these correspond to the rarities we are used to seeing elsewhere (White: Common; Yellow: Uncommon; and so on).
The rest of the information given is the same as before. I would consider whether the following is worth putting on tooltips:
  • "Marksman Mastery" and/or the bar
    • the numerical pool value
    • contribution to final value (with more significant figures)
    • diminishing returns text (explaining the effect of diminishing returns on this particular stat)
    • breakdown of contributions from gear piece native stats, runes, preps, consumable buffs, combat buffs
  • "Marksman Power"
    • description of the stat
    • where one can find this stat
  • "+58%"
    • breakdown of how this number is calculated
    • what this number actually means for the player



Comparing Gear

The way gear is currently compared is ... convoluted and inaccurate. The proposal I have below will handle the "convoluted" part. When comparing gear with stats as varied as what we have in Villagers and Heroes, I feel that it would be great to have a static comparison screen for gear. Have your two pieces of gear on either side of the screen with a list of stats in the center that is reminiscent of the character screen. Here is one variant of such a thing:

1624211639884.png

Stats that are not affected should be grayed out; stats that are increased should be green; stats that are decreased should be red. This allows a player to quickly understand changes in the following way:
  1. What is changing? - Look at anything that isn't grayed out.
  2. What is going up and what is going down? What am I trading? - Look for the colors green (for up) and red (for down).
  3. How big are the changes? - Look at the numbers.



The Actual Gear

I don't have a picture for this one (it was too difficult for me lol), but I believe I can explain the concept well enough.
  • The gear screen will be divided into three distinct sections:
    1. Native stats - will contain 3 pieces of information (2 on the first line and 1 on the second line)
      • First line - "Name of Stat" and "Rank"
      • Second line - "Effect"
    2. Prep - same layout as native stats; 2 options for display:
      • only show if there is a prep on the gear
      • show empty if there is no prep on the gear and one can be placed on it
    3. Rune effects
      • stats first - same layout as native stats (as much as possible)
      • abilities second
  • The "Rank" of a stat is simply the power level divided by 10, formatted as ## - #. The first number is the whole number part; the second number is the decimal part (which may or may not include 0 ... up to the devs). Here are some examples of Ranks:
    • Level 95 best slot: 95 - 6
    • Level 99 crafted rune second best slot: 99 - 4
    • Level 4 Ginny rune: 4 - 0
    • Level 65 prep: 65 - 0
  • The "Effect" of a stat will have 2 values:
    • The first is similar to what is in game now (the naked value) with a couple of changes:
      • Effects are forcefully applied in the following order (this is to ensure accuracy in display calculations; subject to change as needed):
        • Elder levels
        • All equipped gear
        • Talents and Ultimate Abilities
        • Native stats
        • Runes
        • Preparations
        • Consumables
        • Ability Buffs and Debuffs
      • The effect is allowed to changed based on the player's level (cupped at the level of the gear).
      • If the player is below the level needed to equip the gear, an error message will display notifying the player that the values shown apply only to players at the gear's level or higher.
    • The second is the effect after diminishing returns are taken into effect.
 

Halleebell

Squirrel
Characters
Hallee/Freyra
Platform
iOS, PC
Last edited
Personally I think having a “cap” “soft cap” visible to see is important. We might not fully understand the system but when we have visuals it helps to understand where we stand with our build. A6B9DA6A-F98A-4C50-9662-5BA6E03B807E.png
Before all the changes were made we could click the middle of each row and see where we were. You had xyz of this stat which was xyz% out of xyz%. Honestly I didn’t know all the formulas, the math that went into it. But being able to see number plus what percent that was to a capped % was really helpful while building my chars. I new that if I needed more haste which I had to switch out with let’s say magic resist but I needed magic resist to stay within a certain percentage my only obstacle was really the rng and lack of certain stats while crafting to get what I needed or wanted to change. Having these “caps” is in my mind pretty vital.

A side note is that let’s say it was reversed you have 13% haste there could of easily been a window like in the picture that would say 13% haste which is 2300 haste out of whatever number. Which is what I think was truly lacking from the previous system and even this one. You do not have all the answers on how it’s changing your stats. Where is your stat currently? Cool there’s arrows or stars to show “progress” but the knowledge of how the progress is happening is completely hidden.
 
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Zaphyra

Master Villager
Characters
Retired
Platform
Android, PC
Last edited
It would definitely help me to see my current pool values, along with the cap for each stat, for my current combat level. Then I'd know that I had 3200/2800 possible Expertise (oops, too much!) or 1600/3200 possible Vitality (hmm, not enough?). Then I could see exactly which stats need to be increased or decreased. 🤓👍

EDIT: I've noticed a wide variation of Rune values and I often look through hundreds of pieces of gear, to find and gnogment the strongest Runes. I think it would save me (and other crafters) a lot of time, if Rune values were given with value caps too. So we could quickly find the strongest Runes, without looking at every single piece of gear. For example... If my Expertise Rune value is 16/20, then I'd know I need to keep looking for a stronger one... but if my Rune is 20/20, then I know that's as high as they go and I can stop looking. The same thing applies to Feat Runes, which also vary widely.
 

Klaeklae

Bog Frog
Platform
Android
I think the stat system is fine, actually.

It seems like a waste of resources to make this grand change in order to get back to where we already are. Complex? Somewhat. But there isn't anything about it that doesn't logically flow once you understand how it is set up, and the difficulty is well in-line with other MMOs.

Do you need some understanding of some basic MMORPG stat concepts? Yup. Things like:
*Additive buffs vs. Multiplication buffs; *Diminishing Returns;
*Soft stat adds vs Hard stat adds
*Stat Stacking

If anything, one could make a case for poor transparency in some cases. The example of "is this the strongest rune?" highlights this in that they could label them with different adjectives so one could associate the power level of the rune easily vs identifying them through trial and error by obtaining a large pool of same level runes.

However, a counter argument could be made that part of what makes V&H what it is is actually the learning curve associated with the stat system in general. Because there isn't a tutorial for it, and it does require some trial and error.. ie switching items out and seeing how it effects the character page; watching damage values on target dummies as one plays around with different items, runes, builds, etc.
Does it really need to be so tuned in that the tool tips do all of the work for us? Might as well just save everyone a lot of heartache and put an "autopilot to 95 with best Stat build" button in and call it a day.

Anyway, I digress.

What exactly is wrong with the current stat system again?

-Klaeklae
 

Math Fish

Squirrel
Royal Guardian
Characters
Math Fish (Marksman), Shama Fisha (Water), Accursed Angelfish (Shadow), Logical Loach (Fire)
Platform
PC, Steam
What exactly is wrong with the current stat system again?
This part ...
Do you need some understanding of some basic MMORPG stat concepts? Yup. Things like:
*Additive buffs vs. Multiplication buffs; *Diminishing Returns;
*Soft stat adds vs Hard stat adds
*Stat Stacking

If anything, one could make a case for poor transparency in some cases. The example of "is this the strongest rune?" highlights this.

Because there isn't a tutorial for it, and it does require some trial and error.. ie switching items out and seeing how it effects the character page; watching damage values on target dummies as one plays around with different items, runes, builds, etc.
... I'm not going to propose a rebalance or a guided tutorial all the way to 95: just something to help those unfamiliar with stuff like this to get started.
With this all in mind we an define out problem like this:
  • The demand for power and the barriers to power are much greater than the resources available reasonably allow us to achieve.
Note that there is no mention of buffing players, nerfing enemies, or balancing the game. That is because this is not a balance problem: It is a design problem. In short, content was designed without any introduction or explanation of that content. The players are left to figure it out themselves. All we are looking for here is a way to get started on our journey to mastering stats. We don't need a road map or a tour guide, just a random dude to point us in the right direction. To put it in terms of writing a story: We have the plot, climax and dénouement without any exposition. The entire story is ruined because we have no idea what is going on.
 

Klaeklae

Bog Frog
Platform
Android
If all you are looking for is an intoductory tutorial to how stats operate in V & H and definitions of mechanics within the stat realm, then just make one. You are certainly more than qualified to do so!

You won't even need to type out any math formulas (unless you really want to) as likely the crowd that understands the formulas already understands how the system works.

-Klaeklae
 

Sinjin

Jack Of All Trades
Platform
iOS
- the values that are present give conflicting information to the 99% of players who don't already understand the system
the values that are present give conflicting information to the 99% of players who already understand the system
There, fixed it.

There is also ’an implementation problem’. To be fair, it’s hard to get everything right with ‘just one guy’ (scarce resources)… but that doesn’t mean you stick a pin in it (with all the bugs and problems) and save it for later. Root out the bugs now. It doesn’t take a full refactor, just fix the broken feat/talent tooltips first.

1) Sources of information, even material solely and directly published by MOG, are wrong. I don’t even bother pointing out how jacked the talent calculator is anymore. Many feats are worded poorly, or incorrectly (Seismic Shock’s talent-derived heal component is yet another example; there shouldn’t be anything confusing about ‘heals for 100% of damage dealt’).

2) As it stands today, there are too many bugged items/talents (for example, that say ‘spell power’ or ‘ability power’ when they’re actually modifying mastery) to even bug report. They did enough stats rollback to see pooled values in the character screen, but didn’t bother fixing almost all of the items broken when they ‘renamed’ mastery to power. Some examples are problems with feat descriptions (Bitter Chill), and some talent based (Nature Hunter’s ‘Tranquility’ comes to mind)… but they’re all wrong (in that they don’t accurately describe what they do).

3) Vitality is pooled? Hmm, always thought Health was a bucket. Regardless, I guess it can be chalked up as another example of ‘not obvious, not explained’.

4) Ask 3 people to describe the +/- 20% variance. Pretty sure you’re gonna get a lot of “lol whut?”
 

Math Fish

Squirrel
Royal Guardian
Characters
Math Fish (Marksman), Shama Fisha (Water), Accursed Angelfish (Shadow), Logical Loach (Fire)
Platform
PC, Steam
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Sinjin

Jack Of All Trades
Platform
iOS
I really can’t understate how well I think your update nailed that second post. The mock-up contains all the information a player needs at a glance and appears easily scalable to support a wide variety of aspect ratios.

It also makes item comparison ‘plain obvious’, and what’s not is explained with an accurate tooltip.

Lurves it.
 
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Kitty the Hunter

Villager
Platform
PC
Status Screen

One change I would like to see is a revision of the character screen. There was a valiant attempt at simplifying the old system and tbh ... I apologize for not coming up with this sooner than I did: It may have saved us all a lot of pain and heartache. So, what is the idea?

We use a picture with labels to convey the relevant information to the player. Specifically, I want to remove the pool value and the ">>>" thingy altogether, replacing it with a bar. Here is a trial image to convey what I am trying to create:

1624209952983.png
The new bar contains a lot of information in a small space:
  • Value: This is now much the pool is contributing to the final value. In this hypothetical example, the Value is precisely 18% (or 60% of the maximum value).
  • Effectiveness: This is how effective any future stats will be at the most. As you are 60% of the way to the max, diminishing returns gives a 60% penalty to future pooled stats. This 60% penalty makes the next point in the stat 40% effective.
  • Max Value: This is not explicitly given, but players can derive it from the information given. You may also choose to include this information in any of the following places:
    • to the right of the 18% --> 18%/30%
    • to the right of the bar
    • to the right of the text "Marksman Mastery"
    • as part of a tooltip
I am confused by this bar. I like the potential and I think I see what you are trying to do but the numbers themselves are confusing.
How is 18% also 60%? Is this what is being added to what is already there? If so, why is what I already have not shown. I think this would be good to know. If I have 18%, then I would have 82% remaining, but I only have 40%? why was this cut in half? So somehow the 60% becomes important here so should I ignore the 18% altogether? The 18% seems to add no real information but serves to confuse me. Why is max value not given? No, I can't derive it from the information given and the formula won't help me.
 
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Giruv

Merchant
Royal Guardian
Characters
Verrier
Platform
PC
I kinda wish we have stat breakdown too, so it would be something more like this
1624366005690.png
There can be more at the breakdown including base value, relic, enchantment, origin, etc.
 

sirbabbo

Guest
Great post to understand it more for new players.

My proposal would be:

Get rid of diminishing returns and make bosses tougher!!!

Then I like things to be simple, so I would rather have this:

Assuming at lvl 95 numbers: left column max value is 42k, in some runes and glyphs and then the right Column gives the accurate % based of what you put in..

Exp: So 21k haste is added onto the gear, that is 50%. Any added gear gives -/+ of %. Then the Middle column will say Effectiveness of said state let’s say for easy sake it is 50% effectiveness .so really 21k of 42k haste is applied on gear but only 10.5k is used based off the %. . . if 42k of haste is on your gear, then the effectiveness will read 100%, so it would be 42k of haste is used.. and so on.. But that is me.

But Math gets paid more, so I’ll agree with him on this great post cos he knows it better.. I’m just a simple dude.. Good post!!
 

V

Adventurer
Royal Guardian
Characters
See Signature
Platform
PC
Last edited
The purpose of this thread is to make an attempt at defining the overall problem that the community (as a whole) has with the current stat system. Specifically, why do we find it such a pain to deal with? Before I begin I want to list some terms that I will be using which would benefit greatly from a fixed and agreed upon meaning:


  • Pooled Values - the numbers on the left side of the above image (Vitality, Clarity, Savagery, and so on). They are used to determine some amount that gets added to the final value.
  • Final Values - the numbers on the right side of the above image (Health, Mana Efficiency, Critical Chance, and so on). They are calculated from various sources such as pooled values, talents, or abilities.

There are many games out there that utilize pooled stats. I will place some examples in the spoiler below and say that having left and right side stats is absolutely NOT a foreign concept and has been around since even before DnD campaigns.

World of Warcraft
In World of Warcraft, there are a handful of pooled values, one of which is Strength. Here is what it does (WoW source):
As you can see, Strength gives melee Attack Power for most classes and increased block damage for some classes with shields. So "melee Attack Power" and "damage block" would be considered final values.

Minecraft
Believe it or not Minecraft has some rather complex statistics ... and I'm not talking about "distance walked" or "creepers killed" :p. The one I want to highlight here is damage mitigation. Look at this formula for damage and tell me Minecraft is always easy to understand (Minecraft source).
The final value of "damage mitigation" is that monstrosity in the giant parentheses. It is calculated based on the pooled values "defensePoints" and "toughness" from the target and "weaponDamage" from whatever happens to be hitting that target.

FFXIV
Final Fantasy games in general have a lot of stats. So it doesn't come as a surprise to see formulas and stuff for it. Here I am highlighting HP. In Villagers and Heroes, our health is some base amount plus 5 times our Vitality. In FFXIV, this is how they do it (FFXIV source):
All the fancy terms with "Mod" in it are just table values that get plugged into the formula. I'm sure they have their own formulas that determine what they actually are, but ... the point here is that HP (the final value) is calculated from other values (in this case 3 modifiers, your VIT attribute, and that random-looking decimal number).

Dark Souls
Dark Souls is appropriately convoluted. I'll put a snippet here and let you read it for yourself (Dark Souls source):
So Strength (the pooled value) affects Attack Power which is scaled based on Weapon Scaling. And low strength will cause things to happen and so does low Dexterity, Intelligence, and Faith. There's a lot of interwoven stuff happening here.

So, many games already have pooled values and final values. The UI (user interface) for these systems varies wildly, though, as if there isn't really any one way that "works" or is better than any other. Yet in all of these other games players seems to be fine playing it, even in games where the systems are orders of magnitude more complex than what we have in Villagers and Heroes. So ... what is the problem? I feel that the vast majority of the problem can be described by considering 3 things:
  1. Demand from Content - There is a strong need to understand how stats work for numerous reasons:
    • they define our character
    • the power difference between understanding and not understanding is staggeringly high
    • a lot of popular content (raids, 95 elders, event zones) demands a mastery of stats (or, at least, a higher mastery than we currently have)
    • people with powerful characters feel powerful and accomplished while people without powerful characters feel weak and like failures
  2. Intuition Barrier - There is a general lack of understanding of stats due to the unintuitive nature of stats.
  3. Information Barrier - People are given enough tools to succeed in main story content, but not enough to begin the path to success beyond that:
    • many values can only be found in user-made forum posts or shared documents
    • consumable buffs and other "stat-enhancing substances" are never explained ... you just craft consumables once in a miss-able side quest
    • there is no introduction to group content of any kind
    • the values that are present give conflicting information to the 99% of players who don't already understand the system
With this all in mind we can define our problem like this:
  • The demand for power and the barriers to power are much greater than the resources available reasonably allow us to achieve.
Note that there is no mention of buffing players, nerfing enemies, or balancing the game. That is because this is not a balance problem: It is a design problem. In short, content was designed without any introduction or explanation of that content. The players are left to figure it out themselves. All we are looking for here is a way to get started on our journey to mastering stats. We don't need a road map or a tour guide, just a random dude to point us in the right direction. To put it in terms of writing a story: We have the plot, climax and dénouement without any exposition. The entire story is ruined because we have no idea what is going on.

As I am still working on potential solutions to this, I will reserve the second post and wait until my idea is fully formulated. In the meantime I would love it if you all would comment on any part of this. The discussion would do the following:
  • let the developers know that this is something we feel is important
  • let the developers (and me) know what it is precisely that keeps us from understanding the stat system
  • encourage me to finish the second post (I may move on to another topic if no one replies :p)
  • get more people involved - Neither I, nor anyone else, has the monopoly on knowledge. Who knows what random comment or question will inspire the next great thing in this game? :)
  • bring up any parts of this discussion that I happened to miss - I miss things sometimes hehe
The players who do not understand the stat system have long since given up on attempting to wrangle its complexities and inconsistencies, so I doubt we will see many of them post here. Make no mistake though, they make up the vast majority of the game's population.

I've worked with around 200 level 95 players on their builds over the past few years which makes for a decent sample size. I can say with confidence that a maximum of 10 of those knew exactly which stats and runes they wanted for their builds straight off the bat. I estimate that about 25 of the 200 players were well-versed enough to have some idea of what they were looking for, but would make requests such as Savagery on their Belt. The remaining ~170 were either lost or did not care about gear and simply wore what they were given.

This 17% "literacy rate" should be ringing alarm bells throughout the game, but unfortunately most of these players do not make their way over to the forums, or to Discord to voice their thoughts. They are content with being able to solo the game, so why worry about the inner-mechanisms of the stat system?

Here are the top 10 common issues and questions that I've encountered when working on a build with someone.

Note that not all of these directly correlate to the stat system, but they all involve the gear system in some fashion.

1: What does each Stat do?

There are currently 13 primary stats in the game, as well as another hidden one known as Avoidance nested within the Secondary Stats section. The naming convention of these stats are not exactly clear to players. What is Savagery? Clarity? Haste? None of these words mean anything within the game's context, and players have to mentally translate them into terms such as Critical Chance, Mana Efficiency and Attack Speed to glean any meaning.

2: Which Stats should I raise?

"Don't place all your eggs in one basket". "Diversify your portfolio". Common phrases that apply to reality and leave players assuming that they also pertain to this game. Often I'll find players trying to construct 'well-rounded' builds, with a sprinkle of investment into each and every stat rather than a focused build with a specialization on a particular role. Players automatically assume that raising any and all stats is a beneficial move. This is partly due to the philosophy expressed above, but also due to the green chevrons adjacent to each stat which displays terms such as fantastic for successfully building them up or poor for neglecting them.

As most endgame players will tell you, out of the 13 stats in the game only 4 really matter. That is your Mastery (Ability Power), Expertise (Cooldown Rate), Savagery (Critical Chance) and Brutality (Critical Damage). This is known as a meta and is never inherently clear to most players. Metas are unavoidable pitfalls of game design where an optimal strategy arises out of a set of options. In our case, these 4 particular stats are the meta for building powerful characters, be they a Healer, Tank or DPS. The reasoning behind this leads us down the rabbit hole of class and content balancing, but the simplified version is that damage reigns supreme.
  • Tanks who build for defense will see it put to waste as they are unable to hold threat against an offensive Tank.
  • Healers who build well-rounded will be soundly outclassed by those who build for offense.
  • DPS players... nothing more needs to be said.
Ideally, a meta at the core of the game's stat system should not exist. The solution is to increase the effectiveness and need of unwanted stats through the game's class and content balancing and perhaps even limit the effectiveness of meta stats as well... but we won't get into the details of that here.

The important point to take from this is, that players will not be able to understand which stats they should focus on without first understanding the requirements of the game's content and the function of their specific class role. The game is expecting the chicken to come before the egg.

3: How do I raise Stats?

Hovering over a stat displays a tool-tip which lists the many different ways you can acquire said stat as well as which specific items you can find it on. Unfortunately, it's not entirely truthful.
1624369110715.png
For example, the tool-tip above states that: Savagery can be found on Class Tokens, Gloves, Helms, Trinkets and Weapons. What the tool-tip doesn't tell the player is that this only applies to dropped gear stats and crafted runes but not crafted stats because it is not possible to acquire this stat - as well as several others - on crafted equipment! However, you can get it on weapons if you possess a weapon master specialization.

Reread the paragraph above. If it makes sense to you then kudos, you've grown accustomed to one of the game's inconsistencies. Now, attempt to read it through the perspective of fresh player. How are they meant to know any of this "between the lines" information? It is not explicitly mentioned in the game, nor does it make any logical sense.

I hope that this gets the point across how players can lose faith in tool-tips when they leave out critical details.

4: How much should I invest into a Stat?

2 words for you: Diminishing Returns. This mechanic adds yet another layer of complication to an already needlessly convoluted system. As a player invests into a stat, they will eventually reach a threshold where any subsequent investment will yield diminishing gains (except for Vitality, which for some reason is the exception). Not only is the concept of Diminishing Returns never mentioned throughout the entire game, but this threshold is hidden behind calculations which no ordinary player will take the time to compute.

This is why players are bewildered when they equip an item, expecting a certain amount of stat growth, and find the resulting growth to be completely different than what they expected. Because the percentage values displayed on the tool-tip do not take diminishing returns into account, so the only time they will ever be accurate is if the player has 0 points in their stat.
1624376936478.png
Due to the lack of in-game information, most players aren't even aware that diminishing returns exist in the first place. They continue to build up whichever stats they find to be the most useful or whichever stats are most abundant (generally armor, vigor and will) deep past the threshold of diminishing returns.

Once a player has been made aware of this folly of a mechanic, that still does not answer the question of How much should I invest into a stat? At this point it becomes very subjective, and multiple players may state conflicting finish lines for their stats based on factors such as role, talents, socket budget and the benefit of the stat itself. Eventually every stat reaches a point where the gain is no longer worth the investment - but this point is not a consensus, and ranges widely from person to person based on many variables.

The result of this is that new players find it difficult to gauge their ideal stat allotment when the question of How much should I invest into a stat? is met with the answer of It depends. I'm not suggesting we need a cookie-cutter layout for each stat, but rather that the game should present a cleaner depiction of what exactly players should consider when building stats, especially diminishing returns.

5: Is there a stat cap?

In the past we could view each stat's theoretical limit via their tool-tip even though it was impossible to reach it due to the soft cap. Players who didn't understand or weren't aware of diminishing returns would check whether they hit the stat's cap and upon seeing that they did not, they would continue investing into the stat fruitlessly.

If the stat cap is added back to the tool-tip (which it should be), then it must be contingent on the addition of a more informative tool-tip, alerting players that the cap cannot ever be hit.

6: What is the correlation between the left and right column in the character sheet?

This is one of the most common questions is a tricky one to explain. Players are often unaware that the two columns are actually two entirely different metrics and that a stat (left column) is only a single facet in the overall composition of an attribute (right column). Most players believe that the column on the right is merely a translation of your stat-points into their percentage values when it actually also consists of many independent modifiers such as Glyphs, Origin Bonuses, Talents, Spells etc.

The current UI has a separation of characteristics that easily confuses players.
  • Stats on the left are subject to diminishing returns and have a hidden soft cap.
  • Attributes to their right are not subject to diminishing returns and have no cap.
Then there is also the issue of certain spells, runes and talents directly mutating attributes (Blazing Speed, Frenzied Strikes, Show them How, Expose Weakness, Strength of Arms, Adapt, Warpath, Volatile Poisons, Gale Force, Thorncrest etc.). Why have a pipeline from stats to attributes if the system does not utilize it across the board? This muddles the system and befuddles many players when there are multiple ways to arrive at the same destination, each with their own properties.
1624377294058.png

7: How much have I actually contributed to my attributes?

One major issue is that it is difficult to ascertain the base value of certain attributes unless you remove all of your gear. Sometimes, even after removing all of your gear you won't be able to view the base values for attributes due to enchantments, origin bonuses and elder levels.

If a player has gained 25% Ability Power through their stats, but their Ability Power displays 70%, where is the remaining Ability Power coming from?

For this reason, it's important to display the base values of all attributes on their tool-tips so that players can distinguish between what they built up versus what was already there. Providing a breakdown of how the overall tally was calculated would be an even larger step forward.

8: What about Glyphs?

Glyphs are overwhelming for many players due to their complex descriptions, conditional properties, quantity and lack of noticeable effect on a player's Attack and Defense ratings unless they are actively boosting an attribute. Unlike stats, they do not even appear on the player's character sheet unless the player already possesses has it equipped.

I love the concept of Glyphs and abhor their execution. These should never have been point based effects, but rather rarity-based runes with a focus on player agency. I'd rather players have a choice of 5 or 6 Glyphs to add to their build rather than 10+ Glyphs active at once.. but that is neither here nor there.

The point is - Glyphs share many of the same issues as stats and more:
  • Their names mean nothing and provide little to no context as to their effect
  • Their tool-tips are inaccurate in terms of which equipment they can be found on
  • They are subject to diminishing returns but that information is never shared
  • They have a soft cap but it is not displayed in their tool-tip
  • They are hidden and unable to be seen / read until the player finds and equips one

9: Why do my numbers go down when I level up?

Another way of asking, why am I getting weaker when I level up, shouldn't I be getting stronger? Due to the way the stats work, when a player levels up, they require greater point investment into a particular stat in order to hit the percentage value that they previously held.

For example, let's say a player has 15k points in Expertise with a Cooldown Rate of 30%. Upon leveling up, those 15k points are no longer worth 30% Cooldown Rate. They may only be worth 27%. This is what forces players to adopt higher level equipment rather than wearing level 1 Legendary gear for eternity, but it is never explained within the game and is not easily comprehensible without understanding more about how stats work.

Personally, I would rather see penalties on gear rather than exponential increases in stat values as players level.

10: What about Runes?

Another aspect of gear building that tends to overwhelm players are runes. Currently there are 4 different types of runes: spell runes, augmentation runes, passive runes and reinforcement runes.
  • Spell runes come on weapons, necklaces, trinkets and class tokens - some exclusive to dropped variants and others exclusive to crafted with no indication as to which is which.
  • Augmentation runes boost the values of a particular spell. These can come on dropped and crafted gear.
  • Passive runes can be found on shields, weapons (certain classes) and armor. Some of which have been lingered around since 2011 (improved grip?)
  • And Reinforcement runes which do not follow the same rules as crafted stats. You can't get Brutality on crafted belts even though the tool-tip says you can find Brutality on belts, but you can get a Brutality reinforcement rune on crafted Belts. How are players meant to figure this out?
4 different rune types with their own sources and rules.

Then, we also have rune levels. I once had a player ask me: "If I'm level 50 and can equip this level 54 rune.. why can't I equip this other level 52 rune?" It was difficult to explain that the first rune was just a Legendary level 50 rune and for some reason it was decided to display it as a level 54 rune.

Runes should have been made to follow the rarity system. So instead of crafting a level 53 Rune it would display as a Rare level 50 Rune.

Hopefully these "top 10 questions and concerns" provide a better understanding of how many players view gear and stats.
 

Ekimie

Hunter
Royal Guardian
Platform
Steam
Please don't listen to them and first do the village build 🙏 it isn't stupid if it works! I don't die a lot, that's most important. Pretty please first QOL!
 
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Math Fish

Squirrel
Royal Guardian
Characters
Math Fish (Marksman), Shama Fisha (Water), Accursed Angelfish (Shadow), Logical Loach (Fire)
Platform
PC, Steam
But Math gets paid more, so I’ll agree with him on this great post cos he knows it better.. I’m just a simple dude.. Good post!!
I currently get paid $12/hr ... I doubt I make significantly more than anyone. :p

On a serious note, The 40% from that "bar" image is meant to do something like what you said. The problem with only seeing the number is that we currently don't understand what the number means. If this idea is implemented, then there would be an explanation of that 40% ... it has two meanings:
  1. Only 40% more can be invested before you "hit" the maximum value (as you are 60% of the way there already).
  2. Stats are currently 40% effective. That means if you add 3000 Brutality and the gear normally says +3% Critical Chance ... then that +3% becomes +1.2%, which is 40% of the original value. Gear would show that by giving you the "normed" value of +3% and the "actual" value of +1.2% side-by-side.

I am confused by this bar. I like the potential and I think I see what you are trying to do but the numbers themselves are confusing.
How is 18% also 60%? Is this what is being added to what is already there? If so, why is what I already have not shown. I think this would be good to know. If I have 18%, then I would have 82% remaining, but I only have 40%? why was this cut in half? So somehow the 60% becomes important here so should I ignore the 18% altogether? The 18% seems to add no real information but serves to confuse me. Why is max value not given? No, I can't derive it from the information given and the formula won't help me.
  • Value: This is now much the pool is contributing to the final value. In this hypothetical example, the Value is precisely 18% (or 60% of the maximum value).
  • Effectiveness: This is how effective any future stats will be at the most. As you are 60% of the way to the max, diminishing returns gives a 60% penalty to future pooled stats. This 60% penalty makes the next point in the stat 40% effective.
  • Max Value: This is not explicitly given, but players can derive it from the information given. You may also choose to include this information in any of the following places:
    • to the right of the 18% --> 18%/30%
    • to the right of the bar
    • to the right of the text "Marksman Mastery"
    • as part of a tooltip

Please don't listen to them and first do the village build 🙏 it isn't stupid if it works! I don't die a lot, that's most important. Pretty please first QOL!
This was never meant to be a replacement for the QoL build and I don't want the developers to stop that in order to implement what we are discussing here. In fact, I have complained more than once on multiple platforms that far too much emphasis was being placed on combat, even going so far as to say we are quickly heading towards a PVP-type environment. At one point I even started compiling a list of all the village type changes that the community wanted. Here is far much I did before stopping.


I never implied that any of this was stupid; only that it can definitely be improved. People generally don't understand what is going on with their character and I was hoping we could discuss ways to help with that while the developers work on the next patch.

So, please, don't lump me in with any "them" or "they" or any group that is trying to do stall or distract from something that this game desperately needs.

Hopefully these "top 10 questions and concerns" provide a better understanding of how many players view gear and stats.
  • 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 are all the types of problems I want to make easier to grasp
  • 2 is a balance issue
  • 4 I feel is more a problem for someone trying to min/max than for someone who is trying to get through the main quest. On the one hand, figuring out how to build your character is part of an RPG ... and a very important one. On the other hand, there is an issue with understanding diminishing returns (or it existing as you would say) that is more along the lines of the "questions and concerns" in the first bullet point.
I understand full well that there are MANY little systems within this broad discussion that will need to be addressed before we can even think of writing up an actual draft. The point here is to start with SOMEthing and see what we can come up with. I do have another couple of ideas simmering in addition to the ones I've posted so far, and this weekend I will likely go on a long lunch break (or 3 like last week) to conjure up more stuff. You are welcome to throw stuff at me in discord or here if there is something (or a few things) in particular you think we might get something significant from.
 
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Tenzor

Legendary Hero
Characters
Dezgrim, Tenzor
Platform
Steam
Last edited
I thought, that I will start to double check everything when reach 95...all this hidden cap...But already face it....Seems that DR afficted values to much...at 17% of crit I add a value that gives 5% crit but get 1% only...nice.

Really that worst of the game solution ever to do such system where I need to use Excel to calculate everything. I really hate games with hidden DR-system. What the point to have it in such casual game like this? That's really stupid ever...What the purpose to do that? Most of the people even did not understand how it works. Just stupid waste of sockets

It is no any decent point to hunt 3338 runes with such stupid system...I am very regret that already waste thousands gold on that...
 
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