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Virilneus’ GS4 Idea Book » 2009 » August

Virilneus’ GS4 Idea Book

August 24, 2009

The Biggest Idiot in Gemstone

Filed under: Game Balance — Tags: — Virilneus @ 7:56 am

Simutronics has a rather stupid forum system, things are not archived, they eventually pass into oblivion with no record. One might think that, perhaps, this allows someone to act like impressively dumb and that there will only be a short term memory of their purposeful stupidity. Sometimes though, you just can’t stand for that, there can be such a egregious example of stupidity that it needs to be archived for all time.

 I used to have respect for Doug (Dionket) but he showed his true colors a couple months ago in an argument about training costs. He was in the sorcerer folder, and he was telling all of us we were wrong and he was either purposefully acting dumb to annoy us, or indeed has some mental impairment.

Now normally, would I feel the need to call out an individual poster? Not necessarily, and in fact though I saved the most stupid of his posts I did not post it here. However Simutronic’s has a new stupid thing were they label supposedly knowledgable and helpful posters with blue names in their forums, and they gave Doug such a label. As demonstrated by his posts he is either one of the most ignorant people on game mechanics I have ever seen, or he purposefully likes to act dumb, either way, it seems an odd behavior to reward. So, if they’re going to ignore this type of thing, I feel that I cannot.

 First, Doug’s post.

I will apologize in advance if my table skills do not pan out. I’m sure there are better ways to format this, but hopefully this will serve.

I elected to use Tsoran’s trainer for this purpose, to rapidly cycle through the calculations (Thanks, Tsoran!)

I will also point out that my analysis has three assessment points across the pure / hybrid spectrum (explicitly, Clerics, Empaths, Sorcerers and Wizards). The race selected was dark elf (should not be statistically significant) throughout the exercise, and for purists, I can post the stats if desired (likewise, should not be statistically significant for my purpose here).

The first assessment is every profession getting the most total training possible based on profession for each category (Armor and Weapons, General, Combat and Magic). In other words, if the profession could train 3 times in something, I trained in it three times. An important note — this categorization is the one published on the website supporting our lands — I chose it explicitly for that reason, so that there would be zero confusion or possibility about spin being applied.

The second point is parity, or a “we all train the same” review. I did this only for the categories of Magic and General. It’s possible there may be something in Combat that is different, but for Armor and Weapons every one of the professions listed above could only train 1x per level in, so there seemed no point. What the parity training is intended to cover is a force cast of training exactly the same (same number of ranks) skill at the least common denominator. As an example, if all professions could train 2 times, except an empath could train 3, 2 times was selected for all.

The third assessment is closer to ’standard training’. This one is harder, and debatable. I elected to keep some categories of training completely consistent (for example, despite the need / plan for empaths to train 2 or 3 times a level in physical fitness, everyone got 25 ranks as a goal to maximize hit points.) This does not attempt to account for the myriad choices a player may feel compelled to make while advancing — but as a consistent baseline, it should serve well enough.

As a final note, none of these plans seem achievable even by cap.

I hope you’re seated. The results are — interesting.

Max Magic Training possible — Cleric loses
Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 909 21,715
Empath 909 19,897
Sorcerer 909 21,109
Wizard 606 20,503

Max General Training possible — Sorcerer / Empath lose
Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 3,535 5,252
Empath 3,939 4,949
Sorcerer 3,838 5,252
Wizard 3,232 4,848

Max Armor and Weapons Training possible — Sorcerer loses
Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 7,474 1717
Empath 10,100 1,818
Sorcerer 10,200 1,818
Wizard 9,999 1,515

Max Combat Training Possible — Empath loses
Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 7,373 5,555
Empath 8,888 6,565
Wizard 8,282 6,060
Sorcerer 8,282 6,464

Checkpoint 1: Sorcerer clearly disadvantaged in General, but is not the most disadvantaged in Magic.

Parity Training (”we all hunt the same, we all train the same”)
Parity Magic training (same ranks all across the professions)
Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 909 18,685
Empath 909 16,281
Sorcerer 909 15,857
Wizard 606 18,483

Parity General training (same ranks all across the professions)
Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 2,929 4,848
Empath 2,929 4,545
Sorcerer 3,232 4,848
Wizard 3,232 4,848

Checkpoint 2: Clerics clearly disadvantaged in Magic, as in checkpoint 1. Sorcerers and Wizards share the disadvantage in the General training. The real surprise for me is the flip of Sorcerers to the best spot. Intuitively, though, it makes sense if one considers the ‘least common denominator’ approach to this part of the review.

Training by profession (”closer to standard”)

General training plan for this purpose is as follows:

4 ranks of armor — traditional training for the pure in full leather
25 ranks of physical training — traditional suggestion (24, but who’s counting? That’s a little math joke, there).
30 ranks of climb — traditional suggestion
50 ranks of swim — traditional suggestion with advent of Nelemar
40 ranks of perception — perhaps somewhat arbitrary, but selected based on years of reviewing discussions on perception to ‘find’ things like cracks and rocks
Max ranks for AS, MIU, Harness, Spell Aim
2x core Mana Control (elemental for Wizards, spiritual for Clerics and Empaths)
-0- Special note — trained Sorcerers 1x in both Spiritual and Elemental MC
25 ranks in non-core Mana Control (includes mental MC) for all professions
3x spell training — not achievable short term, but maximizes the pure potential at / after cap
1.5x core lore (here defined as the cheapest lore available to the profession.)
.5x secondary lore (here defined as the second cheapest lore available to the profession)
.5x tertiary lore (here defined as the most expensive lore available to the profession)

And the results are:

Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 1,211 14,637
Empath 1,239 14,209
Sorcerer 1,239 13,581
Wizard 932 14,181

Please feel free to double check these results. I cannot profess to exacting 6-sigma accuracy in the environment I ran the numbers in. However, even if they’re within a percentage point or two, there are a couple of threads we may discern from this.

First, sorcerers training is challenging, but no more so than any other pure profession.

Second, the position that sorcerers have training point gaps that are significant are not apparent in reviewing the numbers in conjunction with the Simutronics framework.

Third, sorcerers challenges (and they do exist), do not get addressed by attempting to change these numbers. If nothing else, the raging debate I expect to see over the training plan used in the final tabulation should be indicative of my position.

Bottom line — get a guru, ask for and welcome happily every bit of support you get no matter from what quarter, address the CS disparity in the spell lists (don’t need training point adjustments to do that), answer the AS / CS discussion once and for all (training in Magic and general training plan maximizes CS and AS, so you don’t need training point changes to answer that).

On a totally independent note — I saw in the Minor Elemental folder a suggestion by one of this profession to ensure EMC was specifically hooked into the Elemental Lore review. Great suggestion! A bit more negative than I would have liked — the ‘downtrodden profession’ is wearisome and unnecessary to those who care. But the suggestion itself is part of what I enjoy seeing in these lands.

Doug

Now, for emphasis….

Training by profession (”closer to standard”)

General training plan for this purpose is as follows:

4 ranks of armor — traditional training for the pure in full leather
25 ranks of physical training — traditional suggestion (24, but who’s counting? That’s a little math joke, there).
30 ranks of climb — traditional suggestion
50 ranks of swim — traditional suggestion with advent of Nelemar
40 ranks of perception — perhaps somewhat arbitrary, but selected based on years of reviewing discussions on perception to ‘find’ things like cracks and rocks
Max ranks for AS, MIU, Harness, Spell Aim
2x core Mana Control (elemental for Wizards, spiritual for Clerics and Empaths)
-0- Special note — trained Sorcerers 1x in both Spiritual and Elemental MC
25 ranks in non-core Mana Control (includes mental MC) for all professions
3x spell training — not achievable short term, but maximizes the pure potential at / after cap
1.5x core lore (here defined as the cheapest lore available to the profession.)
.5x secondary lore (here defined as the second cheapest lore available to the profession)
.5x tertiary lore (here defined as the most expensive lore available to the profession)

And the results are:

Profession Physical Mental
Cleric 1,211 14,637
Empath 1,239 14,209
Sorcerer 1,239 13,581
Wizard 932 14,181

So… according to Doug, if you were to do an accurate comparison of professional training costs in a standard plan (his words) clerics should be .5x trained in elemental lore and .5x trained in sorcerer lore. Wizards should be .5x trained in spiritual lore and .5x trained in sorcerer lore. Empaths should be .5x trained in sorcerer lore or elemental lore as well.

He posted this darwin-award winning claim in a thread where everyone else was posting in good faith, with accurate information. Then he spent a few days defending his claims as accurate when everyone immediately attacked him for either being stupid or posting in bad faith. We’d all done comparisons showing what professions actually need to train in, in fact he read my posts on the subject prior to his post (supposedly) and I go into great detail not just on the results, but the methodology of statistical comparison used to counteract differing professional needs (like wizards having no need for spiritual lore training) and ROI of training ranks. And yet, he chose to ignore all of that and post his figures which include, as standard training, a plan no character has probably ever followed.

And hey, Simu chose to award this loser with a badge denoting helpfulness and a knowledge of game mechanics. Someone who would tell a wizard to get spiritual lore training as a standard part of their training plan.

Bottom line on Doug is this. He either is just dumb, which maybe isn’t his fault, but it should generally mean he should be ignored and not considered an accurate source of information. Or, (more likely) he is just the type of person to be purposefully disengenuous to the point of incredulity in an attempt to win an argument. Mark Twain may have said “There are lies, damn lies, and statistics.” But had he met Doug, he may have said “There are lies, damn lies, statistics, and shit Doug says.”

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