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Qwinn's Fixpack Changes Discussion

Discussion in 'Planescape: Torment (Classic)' started by Roller123, Aug 26, 2009.

  1. Roller123 Gems: 3/31
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    I too wouldnt recommend Qwinn's mod for the first playthrough, even though it is called a "fixpack", it changes quite a lot, mostly against developer intent, and changes are not really justified.
     
  2. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    "mostly against developer intent, and changes are not really justified."

    Name one, please.

    And by that, I mean name one change that you believe you have evidence was against developer intent.

    I believe every change is justified. I have not seen any evidence suggesting that any change I've made was intended to be the way it was. If I saw such evidence, I would roll the change back.

    The only exception is the changes to Dak'kon's morale-upgraded blades, which were virtually impossible to get and even less possible to keep in the vanilla game. By fixing it so those blades were gettable, it made doing Dak'kon's circle with him a penalty instead of a good thing. Nevertheless, I'm rolling back part of the change, and making the remainder optional in the next release.

    So, yes, that one change is purely for balance reasons rather than a bugfix (and when I held a poll, the change was supported by a very solid majority), but it hardly justifies your claim that my changes are "mostly against developer intent".

    Actually, I think I'm being pretty generous asking for just one. Since I fix hundreds of bugs, and that's -in addition to- those fixed by Platter and other modders that went before me, I think I'd be well within my rights to ask you for at least 50 unjustified non-bug fixes in order to support your hyperbolic use of the word "mostly".

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2009
  3. Roller123 Gems: 3/31
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    Qwinn
    -thieves got changed to d10 hit dice
    -mages got changed to d10 hit dice
    -Thac0 became class restricted.

    There is no evidence needed, because in vanilla game these things arent broken to begin with.

    Ok, but in this very thread you also say:
    Here is the evidence, provided.. by you. Too much HP is bad, but mages with 250% more life per level is apparently not. Having declared this and at the same time having no problems adding 100hp+ mages i am indeed doubting your ability of judging game balance. Although do not take this as a personal attack. You have the freedom to add whatever you want to add. Playable Lady Of Pain? No problem. But, well, why are you expecting people starting to recommend such a mod based on personal beliefs.
     
  4. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    From the game manual, page 31:


    From the game manual, page 31:


    Those aren't my only basis for those changes... I have others that I'd say are pretty compelling... but I think those alone are sufficient to refute your implication that I'm just making these things up as I go along. The game manual is, as far as I'm concerned, a pretty damn strong indicator of designer intent. Were the writers of the manual infallible? No. -But neither were the programmers of the engine-.

    As for the game shipped not being broken, okay, so you think that it wasn't broken that, when a 15th level fighter TNO switched to a 3rd level mage, he gained 5 AC and lost none of his fighting skills? TNO in combat as a 3rd level mage was absolutely, without question-, SUPPOSED to be a -way way way- better in combat than TNO as a 15th level fighter, even though every class trainer in the game says "You have to give up the way of the sword to become a mage again" in one way or another?

    Then there's the sheer inconsistency of the way the vanilla behavior works. When you switch from a mage to either other class, you lose the ability to cast spells or wear a mage-only AC ring. When you switch from being a thief to a fighter or mage, you forget the ridiculously simple ability to hide in a corner. But when you go from a fighter to either other class, you retain full fighting prowess? Why? Especially when that's contradicted by the manual which states clearly that TNO is supposed to be a single class at any given time, not a multi-class.

    And you need offer no evidence for why the manual is wrong, and the class trainers are wrong. They just are. The way it was is right because that's the way it was, and if the manuals and class trainers contradict that, and if the class changing behavior was totally internally inconsistent before my fixes and internally consistent afterwards, so what? Have I got your position nailed down?

    Sorry, but I don't find your argument - which by your own admission "needs no evidence" (because there is none) - very compelling.

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2009
  5. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    No offense, Qwinn, but as far as developer intent goes, I think you place the burden of proof in the wrong spot a lot of the time. The developers certainly knew how their engine handled fighter Thac0, for example, so there's no real reason to believe that it wasn't a conscious decision on their part, and rather than asking for proof that your fix isn't in keeping with developer intent, you should be asking for proof that the way the unmodded game handles it is, in fact, a bug. Include the fix if you wish, but this and several others should really be optional in my opinion.

    Your decision to base Thac0 solely on his currently held class not only flies in the face of how 2E dual classing normally works, but also isn't based on anything terribly concrete. Perhaps it fits your idea of how things should be, but I won't personally be using your most recent fixpack without commenting out this and a substantial number of the other fixes it it. I won't be doing this because I'm some sort of icky power gamer, but because I find your rationale for this and several other fixes somewhat lacking.
     
  6. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    Drew:

    I don't think so. I accept the burden of proof. I've given detailed explanations for how I think the burden of proof is met in each change. You can disagree that I've met it - what I resent is the implication that I haven't even tried, or that what I'm basing it on is trivial. The manual ain't trivial. Inconsistencies in the game's handling of class balance isn't trivial.

    "Certainly?" I disagree. For one thing, they didn't write the engine, they leased it from another company and tweaked it. There's a lot of clear, unequivocal bugs in the engine. I'm not saying they were incompetent, but they certainly didn't possess the level of infallibility you're ascribing them.

    If they were as infallible as you seem to accept as a given, then you must believe that they intended every single character get full constitution hit point bonuses until level 30 and beyond, so that even Dak'kon can get over 200 hit points fairly easily, despite that flying in the face of 2nd ed. rules, yes?

    I don't think so. I think it's far more plausible that that got through because they leased the BG1 engine, and the BG1 engine had no need to deal with the issue because the level cap in that game is below the point at which you're not supposed to get CON bonuses anymore.

    Yes, there are, I've given them. I'll give them again. You can argue with them if you like, but please don't pretend I haven't given any.

    I have given what I consider proof, many times on my own forums, and here as well:

    The explicit statement in the game manual that TNO cannot access abilities of one class when he is in another, and the fact that every class ability EXCEPT THACO follows that explicit intent. And the dialogues of every class trainer in the game, who warn you that leaving the fighter class means you will lose your fighter abilities.

    How do you figure? A 15th level fighter that dual classes to a 3rd level mage does not keep the THACO of a 15th level fighter, he gets the THACO of a 3rd level mage. In PS:T, he keeps the THACO. It's not me that's flying in the face of 2E dual classing rules, it's the unmodded game that does.

    And what makes you think he follows dual classing rules at all anyway? I don't think there's any evidence that he's supposed to be a dual classer, he was rather intended to be a single classer that can change between them.

    But let's say you're right, and he's supposed to be a modified dual classer. If you are claiming that a dual classer gets to keep all the abilities of both his classes, then why does TNO lose ALL his thief abilities when he is a fighter or mage, and why does he lose ALL his mage abilities when he is a fighter or thief? Why is THACO so special? It is the meat and butter ability of the fighter class. It is not treated any differently than other class abilities in 2nd Ed. dual classing rules, so why should it be different for TNO?

    Those are not rhetorical questions. If you want to persuade me at all, you're not going to do so without answering those questions.

    The manual is pretty concrete. The fact that every class ability except THACO is treated according to how the manual says it should be is pretty concrete. The dialogue of every class trainer in the game telling you you will lose your fighter abilities when you switch to mage or thief is pretty concrete.

    If you don't wish to install my Fixpack because of it, that's fine. I'm not irritated by that. I am irritated that people would claim publicly that I make no effort to abide by designer intent, when I think it is very obvious I try to do so.

    If the comment on this thread had been: "Qwinn takes things it says in the published Black Isle game manual as evidence of designer intent, which I disagree with", I'd be fine with it. But that's not what was said. What was said was that I basically wipe my ass with designer intent, and, sorry, but I do find that insulting, and I'm certainly going to defend my work against that charge.

    Let me ask you a question. If an explicit statement of intent in the game manual AND the intent exhibited in how every other class ability is treated AND the dialogue of all the class trainers in the game doesn't qualify as "terribly concrete" evidence to you of designer intent, what POSSIBLY could? I think 99% of the bugs fixed in 99% of the fixpacks out there in the world don't have that much justification for being fixed.

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  7. Ziad

    Ziad I speak in rebuses Veteran

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    I really didn't want to jump into this and take sides, as I've not done a fully playthrough of the game since Qwinn's packs were released (I did give them a quick spin though), but there's a couple of things I feel should be poined out.

    He's actually already done that. All 3 of his packs are very modular. You pick and choose exactly which fixes/restorations/tweaks you want and almost all of them are completely independant from each other (there's maybe one fixpack item needed for another in UB and that's it). If your only concern is that specific fixes should be optional then there's no issue.

    There may be other grounds to criticise Qwinn's decisions, but flying in the face of 2E is really not one I would go with. Everything in PST flies in the face of 2E: the whole multiclassing scheme of TNO, his gaining attribute points on level-up, the CON bonus after level 9... I could go on, but the latter one is particularly relevant because Qwinn fixed precisely because it flies in the face of 2E; I don't think it fair to accuse him of moving away too much from 2E when some of his fixes do the exact contrary. Now some of the other things I'm a little less comfortable with, especially the hit dice per level; using the manual as the final decision-maker isn't the best way to go IMO because manual are almost always sent to print before the game is finished and very often designers will change their mind about how things should be done (notice the sometimes gigantic "manual errata" section of the readmes?) Since the packs are all completely modular the issue is pretty moot - if you like some fixes and not others just install the ones you feel are true to the spirit of the game and ignore the others.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 30, 2009
  8. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    Torment is hardly the first D&D product produced on the infinity engine (then again, it's also hardly the 3rd). That they chose to take the engine in a different direction to me indicates developer intent. You are more than within your rights to disagree with me, but my opinion is valid. That said, when exactly did I say the developers were infallible?

    Actually, I agree with you that this is a bug and am glad you fixed it.

    ...and TNO ceases advancing as a fighter and loses the ability to use all but the weapons of the new class. The burden of proof should be in proving that the fact that he is still tied into his fighter Thac0, rate of attack, and proficiency level wasn't intentional. I get that you feel that you have all the evidence you need to argue that your solution is in better keeping with developer intent than the unmodded game, but I'm hardly the only guy that disagrees with you on this. Incidentally, you said something earlier that ties into this, too.

    Funny you should mention that. Dual classing worked fine in BG1. Wouldn't that mean the developers changed the way it worked intentionally? Perhaps you see things differently, but I doubt they did it accidentally.

    First of all, if he kept his mage abilities as a thief, that wouldn't be dual classing anymore...but that's just semantics. TNO starts as a fighter. At the end of the game, no matter what his class was, he's a fighter (since thieves don't get to use the big, heavy maces, we can easily infer that). I think the idea they were shooting for was that TNO was always a fighter at his core. He could only improve as a fighter while specializing in the class, but he was always a fighter. You think that some in-game dialogues and a line or 2 from the manual are sufficient evidence that this isn't what the developers wanted, and it's your mod. I really don't care what you do, since I'm just going to comment out the fixes I don't like, but don't you think it might be reasonable to make the more hotly debated fixes optional?

    Again, no offense, but you don't exactly have a track record of being friendly with people who disagree with you about this type of thing, and I have no real desire to get into that kind of debate with you. As I said, it's your mod, and you can do whatever you want with it. I'm still going to comment out fixes I don't like, and some players less familiar with .tp2 patching are going to simply use older, less complete fixpacks rather than install your mod -- which is superior in every other way -- over a few fixes that they don't agree with. If you're happy with that, fine. If it were me, though, I'd just make the more controversial fixes optional and save myself the headache.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  9. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    Ziad,

    Thanks for chiming in. I do have to correct your point about the fixes in question being modular - they are not. The Fixpack, at least currently, isn't modular in that respect, only UB and the tweak pack are.

    As for the hit point fix, well, I'm recently loathe to discuss this, but I did ask Chris Avellone (lead designer of the game) about that specific issue, and he agreed that it was a bug. I'm less inclined to mention what he has told me in regards to developer intent because he has told me that in the past other modders have used things he's said in emails as specific endorsements of their mods as "official", which he doesn't have the legal authority to do, and I want to make it clear that I am -not- doing that. CA has not endorsed my mods in any official capacity. But, in terms of that specific issue, he did state that he agreed that it was a bug, and TNO is supposed to get a 10 sided hit die regardless of class. That did pretty much close the deal with me. He was less enthusiastic about the THACO change (I suspect he wasn't involved in that decision, or forgot about it if he was, and was essentially thinking about it for the first time when I brought it up), but when I pointed out that it was inconsistent with how the other class abilities worked, his response was "Fair enough!".

    Drew,

    I did not mean to come off as unfriendly, but I was put off quite a bit by the attitude of some here. You insist that your opinion is valid - I never argued that it wasn't. But the initial post that drew me into this thread basically said that -mine- were invalid, and your own post basically dismissed my reasons for believing designer intent to be what it was were based on frivolous reasons. That's more than simple disagreement. If you want me to treat your arguments as valid, please afford me the same courtesy or at least don't be surprised that my responses are going to be less than jovial.

    If you believe that designer intent is other than what I do, that's fine, and I'm happy to argue the merits of the case with you, AND am willing to do so in a friendly manner. But please don't claim that I treat the matter lightly or am basing my decisions on frivolous data. I think that's genuinely unfair.

    Now if I misinterpreted what you said, and you weren't being as dismissive of my own arguments as you seemed to me, then I apologize. I can only say I was put in a pissy mood by the claim that "most" of my fixpack is against designer intent - do you agree with that statement? It seemed to me that you did.

    You're right. It was the second. There have only ever been five. Both Icewind Dales and BG2 came after it. My point was that no previous infinity game (which would be just BG1) ever had to deal with CON at high levels.

    Not in so many words, but you stated that they certainly knew all the details about that issue and "certainly" meant it to be that way. That does imply that you consider the way the engine shipped to be pretty much infallible, at least on that issue, does it not? What else can you call it?

    This is a very good point. The rate of attacks and proficiencies is handled the way it is because of a hard coded engine limitation that exists in all infinity engine games. It is the reason that Swashbuckler kit in BG2 don't get an extra half attack per round even though they can put extra proficiency points in weapon skills that -should- give it to them. There is only one table that gives extra attacks for both fighters and proficiencies, so they couldn't give it to them without also giving them the extra fighter attacks from level 7 and 12. So they really had no choice on those.

    That said, they were clearly aware of the issue and dealt with it in a roundabout manner, by making it so you couldn't get 4th and 5th proficiency points unless you -specialized- as a fighter with their neat little custom level 7 and 12 thing. It's also why they hardcoded Grace and Ignus (the only non-fighter PC's) to never gain any proficiency points, cause if they got even one more, they'd get an extra half attack per round for the proficiencies AND more at level 7 and 13, which they clearly shouldn't.

    There's no similar limitation against the THACO thing. It was rather easy for scient to do it the other way, and he said that looking at the code, it was clearly just a cut-and-paste job from other sections of the leveling code. There was no indication that any attention had been given to the matter, in fact it looked pretty neglected.

    True... though the poll on my site did have the vast majority agreeing with me on both of these. That doesn't mean I won't brook disagreement - I'm here arguing the points in good faith, am I not? There are people who disagree with the CON hit point bonus change, should I reverse it for them? I don't mean that in a snotty manner, I'm just saying.

    Again, I don't think TNO was meant to be modeled after a dual classer. I think he's a single classer that can change back and forth. But that said - sure, TNO was definitely meant to be different from any of the core rules. The hit die thing, of course, and simply the fact that he can change -back-. I'm not denying TNO is his own animal, a very special case, of course he is. What I am arguing is that the rules that govern him were meant to be internally consistent (where the engine made it possible, and when it wasn't they went to -great- lengths to work around it to achieve the desired intent, such as with the proficiency/RoA thing that you mentioned), and the way the game shipped, they are not.

    That's actually the first original argument I've heard, kudos. It's an interesting concept. Not agreeing with it yet, as the implication throughout the game is that most of his incarnations, including his first, were mages. Can you think of any support from dialogue/manual or anything else game related to support the notion? I rather think he's a fighter first because, well, he has to be -something-, and that seems the obvious choice.

    If by "some in-game dialogues" you mean "every in game dialogue that bears on the issue", yes. As pointed out above, I have discussions with the actual game designers too, but I don't want to base everything on that, and I don't want to claim that as an official endorsement. But that said, yeah, I'm pretty confident. Honestly, my bet is, no one at Black Isle even thought that much (if at all) about TNO's THACO in particular, and when they changed the code specifically for TNO, the multi-classing code just got left in there by default, since it really was a cut and paste from the multi-classing (not dual classing) section of the engine.

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
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  10. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    This has been mentioned by others before somewhat, but I just wanted to comment that personally I wouldn't trust any IE game manuals to base any changes solely on them. I assume that you know that without exception they contain many errors and that not even the errata for each of them covers the majority of the errors present in the manuals.

    And not to knock on Avellone, but asking one designer 10 years later about some rather obscure details doesn't exactly do wonders for justification of any changes. I agree that it's probably as good as you can get, but I think the nature of responses along the lines of "fair enough!" or "makes sense" or "yea, I guess" probably makes it clear that they haven't gone over the entire engine and relived the whole development process to arrive at your conclusion, but rather agreed that what you've presented them makes sense, what's in the game or what was intended (or unintended, but eventually embraced) notwithstanding.

    Basically, I'm with Drew on most of this. If you make it optional, all the reservations go away. If you don't, it might seem to some that you're intent on promoting what you think is right, even if they don't agree. You're free to do what you like, of course, but from my POV any mods that are modular are far better for the player than those which are not. Freedom of choice is worth it. Especially in a game like Torment, which bends or breaks the rules in so many ways that arguing that one man's view of what is right or wrong is absolute is utterly pointless in my eyes.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  11. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    Hey Taluntain.

    Black Isle is not Bioware. As far as I know, the PS:T manual doesn't even have errata, and it only deviates from what's in the game in 4 places that I know of:

    1) The map of the Top Floor of the Mortuary in their mini walkthrough. The northeast room, the one where Ei-vene is, is labeled "Embalming Room", while in game the mapnote says "Northeast Preparation Room". The manual is correct, the game map note is wrong.
    2) The hit point thing
    3) The THACO thing
    4) The thief experience chart is messed up - as far as I know, the only real error.

    That's it. Everything else in the manual matches up to what's in game. That's pretty damn good. I don't think it's fair to claim that, because a totally different company screws up their manuals regularly, we should hold that against this company.

    And again, I give what the manual says about TNO intended to be a single-classer the weight I do because that intent is matched by everything -else- we can see in game, such as all thief and mage abilities being accessible only within that class (barring the proficiencies and RoA, which I already explained why it had to be that way and how the intent was already achieved in a different manner).

    One way people -could- argue with that specific change is by claiming that a fighter's improved THACO isn't really a "class ability". I think the reason no one does is because, let's face it, that would be really really silly. It's the only fighter class ability worth a damn, at least in this game, where restricting weapon types is pretty much trivial.

    Lastly, because it seems to me that a 3rd level mage being way way way better in melee combat than a 15th level fighter just seems on-its-face obviously broken to me. I'm still not sure how anyone can -really- defend that. I know why people would -want- to keep it, it's full of powergamy kensai-mage broken goodness, but I can't see how anyone can really argue that that isn't obviously beyond anything that could honestly be attributed to "but TNO is different!".

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  12. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    Where did I say that Black Isle was BioWare? :confused:

    The fact that BIS hasn't supplied errata for it hardly means much (given how sparse the Torment manual is, they likely just didn't bother). They've only produced a single patch for the game as well, but that doesn't mean that it fixed every single bug in the game.

    And unless I'm not remembering correctly, the IWD series of games' manuals all had quite a bit of errata as well.
     
  13. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    No, but I don't think the evidence for a lot of your changes (no more than 5 or 10 out of what? hundreds?) is sufficient to call them a fix, and feel that those particular fixes should be optional.

    Actually I stated that they "certainly" knew that TNO's Thac0 was tethered to his fighter level and that no other single class progressed his Thac0, since that was not BG1's implementation, since they tested the game to find bugs like this, and since I noticed it the very first time I dual classed on my very first play-through -- and I have trouble believing that my eye for detail is superior to that of the developers and testers. This is *not* how dual classing worked in BG1, so it goes without saying that the developers changed it intentionally. Whether or not niggling little detail was accidental or intentional is debatable, but if it is debatable, it should probably also be optional.

    The fact that there was no attention given to the matter doesn't necessarily indicate lack of developer intent, though. If they didn't think it was broken, they wouldn't have seen any need to fix it. I agree that is is possible that this was an oversight on their part, but it is equally possible that it was intentional -- or that the developers simply didn't care one way or the other.

    No, but making it optional wouldn't be a bad idea.

    This is the whole point though. I shouldn't have to convince you that the unmodded implementation was developer intent. You should be placing the burden on proving that it wasn't. However, if you insist on further evidence, I would argue that the fact the manual said TNO gained 10 hp per level regardless of class feeds into my argument as well, as does the fact that the manual has stat tables, spell tables, and thieving skill tables, but no Thac0 table. Then there's the fact that TNO only acquires new proficiencies as a fighter, even though he should be able to do this as a thief or even a mage, further indicating that the developers intended to tie his combat skills into his fighter level.

    An interesting theory, but I would argue that the burden of proof lies with proving that the decision to use multi-classing code wasn't intentional. One could just as reasonably conclude that they used the multi-classing code to facilitate frequent changes between TNO's base classes and a way to implement the "training system" they used for acquiring even minimal proficiency in a weapon.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  14. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    Drew:

    This isn't how it works, but I can certainly see why you thought it did, and I can see a lot better now why you see things the way you do on this issue.

    The other classes do advance THACO, it just takes the best out of all of them (as it does with a multi-class character). It doesn't -seem- that way because a 5th level fighter (which is what you're likely to be by the time you adopt another class) has a better THACO than a 15th level mage, so if your THACO as a mage does ever become your best THACO, it won't be till -way- late in the game. And since most people will do Vhailor's fighter-only dialogue that will instantly put them at level 10 or better as a fighter, odds are they'll -never- not have their fighter THACO be their best THACO. Works the same way for thief THACO.

    (Note, for the record, that that single fighter-only Vhailor dialogue gives what is probably your 10th-11th level mage a THACO that he shouldn't have as a mage until 30th+ level. Not bad for a single conversation, eh? And you don't have to waste a single drop of xp available to your mage class to get it! If you -are- willing to spend about a level's worth of xp that you could devote to your mage, you can get the THACO of a 40+ mage in about 3 minutes in Curst or Carceri, without ever actually fighting anything as a fighter to boot.)

    I actually agree with your logic there... if the code had specifically thethered his THACO to his fighter level, that would indeed be different enough from how anything else is handled that it would almost certainly have been deliberate. But that's not what the code does. It's just a copy-paste of the way multi-class THACO is determined, by taking the best THACO of all the classes.

    Knowing that's how it works now, does that change your view on the matter at all?

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  15. T2Bruno

    T2Bruno The only source of knowledge is experience Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    I haven't found a need to use any fixpack. However, I do not believe the hit points in game deviate from the manual at all -- I'm not sure about the THAC0. Besides, the game manual was brilliant; I personally believe it was designed to have small errors and multiple interpretations (the nature of the game almost demands such).

    1. 1-4 is a sub-set of 1-10. The manual may state 1-10, but it does not promise you can attain 10 every time.

    2. 1-6 is also a sub-set of 1-10.

    3. Constitution is added to the die roll as listed.

    4. TNO does not follow the normal rules for many things (he's basically a demigod) and so the increase in hp's for each level (even beyond 10) is unusual but does not break the game -- especially when you consider how powerful the Transcendant One can become. Additionally, the use of the fighter's constitution hit point increase can be attributed to TNO's godlike status (certainly not unheard of in the D&D world).

    5. TNO is primarily a fighter. He wakes as a fighter. He must be educated to be anything other than a fighter. It makes sense that fighter abilities are core to TNO. WHile he cannot progress as a fighter while focusing another field, there is no reason to assume he is not able to perform as a fighter. Once again, he is basically a demigod -- slightly different rules apply (and those rules make the game interesting and unique).
     
  16. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    Not even a little. I'd still need to see proof that the developers unintentionally opted to use essentially unaltered multi-class code where Thac0 is concerned. After all, they could have used scripting to strip him of his specialization/mastery/etc when he dualled over to mage or thief -- or even hardcoded that type of behaviour in -- but instead chose to leave it. Further, they could have allowed him to access all the abilities of all of his classes regardless of his current class, but instead only allowed him to access his thieving skills as a thief, his mage skills as a mage, and the full array of his fighter skills as a fighter. Keeping in mind that TNO can't access most of his fighter abilities or use fighter-specific items unless he's a fighter, the wind is rather heavily knocked out of the sails of your argument that the game's implementation is unequivocally accidental. There is entirely too much wiggle room as far as interpretation goes for this to be a core fix.

    A question, if I may. Since your fixpack causes a fighter9/mage10 TNO use his mage Thac0 instead of his fighter Thac0, why do you fix the high level constitution bug? I checked the game manual, and nowhere does it say that you stop gaining a con bonus for levels higher than 10. This tells me that you derived your fix from the AD&D 2e ruleset. If you are going to ignore 2E rules by not allowing TNO access to his fighter Thac0 when his current class is of a higher level, why do you now see fit to invoke those rules with your Con fix? This, Qwinn, is the essence of why I feel you need to make these changes modular.

    When 2E rules, the game manual, the game text, and the game implementation all disagree, which takes precedent? I contend that without definitive evidence that the implementation is faulty, the game implementation should be assumed to be correct. For example, in the unmodded game, TNO gains 1 hp each level up when dual classed. This is almost certainly why the developers elected to give TNO class based hit-points each level instead of a flat D10. Perhaps the developers were simply too busy or too lazy to fix the in-game implementation, but they might have just been too busy or too lazy to fix the manual. Without knowing which is the case, a fixpack should assume that the game's implementation is correct. Fixes like these still belong in your pack, but game-play altering fixes like these -- especially the ones based on the manual or a strict interpretation of the AD&D 2E ruleset -- should be optional for a simple reason. Each and every end user is likely to prioritize the various criterion differently. Only universally accepted bugs* should be included . All other fixes should be optional.

    * For example, not getting a reward for a quest because the script tries to access inventory that isn't there, broken dialogue trees, etc.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2009
  17. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    I see. Very well. I would take it as a kindness if, in the future, you could advise me which arguments you make in support of your position would not actually weaken your position if they are proved to be incorrect. That should save us some time.

    For the record, if I'm advancing an argument in support of my position, and it turns out that the facts supporting my argument are in fact wrong and do not support my argument, I will consider that to actually weaken my position. I won't waste your time asking you to argue against claims that really have no bearing on anything.

    You know the phrase "begging the question"? It gets misused a lot, so let me establish that I'm using it in its original, correct usage: "Your argument, intended to establish a conclusion, pre-assumes that your conclusion is already accepted as correct."

    What you did there is begging the question. If it was a bug, they did not "choose to leave it" that way, but you're assuming that it's not a bug, and you're advancing that assumption as an argument that you are correct. This is a logical fallacy.

    Er, wait. So you're taking the fact that many aspects even of the fighter class are consistent with my interpretation as evidence that my interpretation is wrong? If they behaved like THACO, wouldn't you also cite that as evidence that my interpretation is wrong? Is there any possible implementation that could exist that, in your eyes, doesn't support the notion that I'm wrong?

    Also, please tell me which fighter abilities TNO can't access if he's not a fighter, other than fighter specific items. Since we've pointed out that (due to hard coded engine limitations) he keeps proficiencies and number of attacks... what's left? I don't see any support for the notion that "TNO can't access most of his fighter abilities ... unless he's a fighter". As far as being restricted from fighter items such as weapons, this is probably the most trivial class ability in the game. Daggers are every bit as powerful as every other weapon type, and in many cases superior... even if you could use axes, for example, you'd still want the dagger form of Celestial Fire for its better speed and weight. Ditto Entropic Blade. And Ravel's Nail is pretty much the best weapon available from Ravel till Carceri.

    First, this once again begs the question, assuming that I agree that TNO is meant to be a dual classer. I have already stated several times in this thread that I do not believe he is meant to be a dual-classer, and you have advanced no argument supporting the notion that he is. The evidence I have presented - the class trainer dialogues, the manual, etc. - all state that he is -not- a dual classer, that he operates as a single-class at any given time. So does the implementation that doesn't grant a thief mage abilities when his thief level is higher than his mage level, or vice versa, or either when the fighter level is highest. You can't just keep assuming you've won all these arguments before you've even made an effort, and then advancing that assumption as evidence that you're correct.

    Second, because the THACO thing applies to TNO only, and as people keep telling me, TNO is a "special case" and one can advance the argument that the rules don't necessarily apply to him. The bonus CON issue applies to every PC and NPC in the game, and is not subject to the same argument.

    Thirdly, even if we accepted your assumption that he is a dual classer (and I do not), my fix makes him more consistent with those rules, not less as you have implied, since a dual classer doesn't get to keep his THACO when he changes classes. You've yet to attempt a rebuttal to that point either.

    Except that that 1 hit point you get when your level is low is also a bug, -definitely-, a clear bug as described by scient, a piece of clearly screwed up code that sets a minimum 1 when you gain a level no matter what the circumstances. Oh, and the manual also says it's wrong, same page:

    Note that I would agree that implementation might deserve more weight than the manual OR the in game dialogues OR the 2E ruleset... but that frays mighty thin when it's the implementation versus all three, -plus- all other aspects of the implementation supporting the intent claimed by the manual AND dialogues AND 2E ruleset.

    Here, let me give you an example of why it's so wrong to give the implementation so much deference:

    If you want to see it for yourself, you'll need to do this in the vanilla game, because I'm pretty sure it was fixed for version 3.0. Feel free to install the tome of cheats to make it easier. Or you can just take my word for it.

    Take a character whose made it out of the Mortuary, and has access at least to the mage or thief trainer over in Ragpicker's square. Use the Tome to bring him up to, say, level 7 as a fighter. All's good.

    Then change him over to thief or mage, whatever. They should be around level 3. Now use the tome of cheats to bump him up to level 8 or higher. Not one at a time. A single big chunk of xp that vaults him from level 3 all the way to 8+.

    Guess what? You'll get a FULL mage hit die for every single mage level, all the way from level 4 to level 8. The engine considers that if even -one- of your new levels is a "new" level, then all just-gained levels are "new".

    This is an -extremely- obvious bug. But by your logic, we must assume it was intended.

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2009
  18. T2Bruno

    T2Bruno The only source of knowledge is experience Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    I did nearly this exact thing. I took seven levels of fighter, seven of thief, and seven of mage. I then made to first level as fighter to level nine, and took the tenth level as thief first. I got one hit point for each level I took in mage and thief through level nine -- only one with no con bonuses. I also only got one hit point for fighter and mage at level ten. Perhaps the Tome of Cheats has a bug in it.
     
  19. Qwinn Gems: 3/31
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    The Tome can't have a bug in it in regards to this, it just adds xp, pretty simple function.

    From your description, you did that in the normal course of play, yes? If so, you probably wouldn't have gotten the bug. Here's the key part: "Now use the tome of cheats to bump him up to level 8 or higher. Not one at a time. A single big chunk of xp that vaults him from level 3 all the way to 8+."

    The bug only occurs when you leapfrog several levels, and your final level in that class is now higher than your previous highest level in your other classes.

    (Note that it IS possible to leapfrog several levels in the course of normal play like this, particularly in Carceri where you're getting 200,000 xp with every conversation, but from the description you gave I don't think that's what you were doing.)

    Either that, or you did do what I suggested but with my fixpack installed, which fixes the problem. (EDIT: NM, you didn't do it with my Fixpack if you still got 1hp for the lower levels).

    Qwinn

    ---------- Added 0 hours, 7 minutes and 35 seconds later... ----------

    Here's how I would exploit that bug, if I exploited bugs.

    When you first arrive in Curst, you're probably somewhere around level 10 as a mage or a fighter. In Curst, the xp rewards for simple quests are now in the 150-200,000xp range. It only takes 220,000xp to become an 11th level thief. Assuming you're still a 3rd level thief, change to thief, drop your party members and go do one or two quests until he has 220,001 xp. Then hit Levelup. He'll get a full 1d6 hit die for levels 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10.

    To make sure I'm clear here, if you were a 10th level mage and then went from level 3 to 10 as a thief with a single push of the levelup button, nothing strange would happen, in the vanilla game you'd just get 1 hp per level. But make that single press of the levelup button take you from 3 to 11, and those first 7 levels now give you a full hit die.

    And my point is that, by the logic I'm being presented with here, we MUST assume this was intentional. Or, I'm sure I'll be corrected, we must assume that it MIGHT HAVE BEEN intentional and thus must be optional. Except it's thunderingly obvious that there is no friggin' way in hell that was intentional, and is clearly and obviously a bug. But, again, the logic I'm being presented with leaves no room for that.

    Qwinn
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2009
  20. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    Sigh. My argument was built upon multiple pillars, as you are aware. It was not a house of cards built on a single assumption that, if knocked down, destroys the entire argument. I do not see things so simply.

    Further, I don't need prove that your fix goes against developer intent, since the burden of proof lies with proving that the in-game implementation is out of line with developer intent. You continue to insist that I prove that your fix is not in line with developer intent, but you have it ass-backwards. The onus is not in proving that the original implementation is correct or that your fix is incorrect, but in proving that the original implementation is bugged. If you cannot conclusively prove that <insert possible bug here> goes against developer intent, then you shouldn't be including it as a core, non-optional fixpack component.

    Your "friends" fix is a good example of this. Neither the instruction manual nor the spell description indicate that the spell doesn't stack. I agree that removing this exploit can be a good idea for a mod, but there is no evidence whatsoever that would indicate the stacking behavior of the friends spell to be a bug. The manual does not forbid it, every other IE game has allowed it, and not even the final printing of the 2E AD&D players handbook forbids it. This is a great tweak, but it isn't a fix.

    Context is your friend. The statement you were responding to was:
    Are you in fact arguing that the developers did not choose to allow a TNO mage or thief to retain the higher levels of weapon proficiency which he acquired as a fighter? Because, you know, that's exactly what they did. Correct me if I'm wrong, but you don't change this behaviour either, so even you appear to be assuming this isn't a bug.

    You ignored a crucial operator, here. Read my statement again:
    Keep in mind that this was also part of a larger argument that you ignored. Remember also that I don't have to prove that the original implementation is not a bug. The burden of proof is on the other shoe. To determine whether a "bug" needs to be "fixed", the burden lies with proving that is, in fact, bugged. I shouldn't have to convince you of the absolute rightness of my point of view. Since this is a non-optional component of a purported fixpack, muddying the waters is all that is needed.

    How does any of that have anything to do with whether or not the Game's implementation is, in fact, a bug? I thought this was supposed to be a fix pack, not a game balance mod.

    Yet you skip the actual point of my argument, which is that you inconsistently apply the AD&D ruleset in making your fixes.

    Oh, I understand that this was at least initially unintentional. My point is that they were almost certainly aware of it -- and that they probably elected not to fix it. I contend that they probably opted not to implement the flat D10 TNO was supposed to get in order to compensate. As to why they decided not to update the manual.

    You see, this is the whole point. With a fixpack , the burden lies not with proving your proposed bugfix isn't "correct", but in conclusively proving that the original implementation is, in fact, a bug. I don't have to "win". If I merely muddy the waters, I have provided enough evidence that the component(s) should probably be optional. If you don't want to do that...well...it is your mod. Do whatever you want.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2009
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