A comparison of the various melee options in DAOC and how they work v.1,
5/2/2003, Peter Waterman
There are a few basic concepts of the DAOC melee system that any user who has played a melee character understands to varying
degrees. The first concept is that melee damage uses a weapon for it�s base damage, and how hard this hits depends
on the DPS of the weapon, and the user�s weapskill stat on their character sheet (higher is better for both). The second
concept is that melee characters can use styles to increase their weapon damage and add supplementary effects with their weapons.
The third concept is that there are varying types of weapons (such as crushing and slashing), while the fourth is that there
are varying techniques for using weapons (such as dual wield and two handed).
Not all characters can see all of these effects in action, however they are all based on a mathematical baseline within the
game code. By determining this baseline, one can compare and contrast these various types of melee. This document will set
about doing so.
The Basics: How Weapons Work
When you right-click a weapon in DAOC ("delving"), you see a number of stats. All of these are important to various degrees.
At a glance they include the following:
DPS � The base damage-per-second of the weapon
SPD � The base swing time of the weapon in seconds
CON � The condition of the weapon
QUA � The quality of the weapon
BON � The bonus of the weapon
A more detailed breakdown of these weapon stats follows...
The second most important aspect of a weapon is the base rate at which it swings, its speed (SPD). This statistic shows the
number of seconds it will take between attacks while swinging this weapon � note that the SPD, or delay as some call
it, is added after the weapon swings. This means for the period of time after the weapon swings equal to the weapon�s
SPD, the weapon user will be unable to perform any other actions (whether swinging a weapon or casting a spell) which are
affected by this timer. The effective, or actual, speed of a weapon can be faster or slower than the listed SPD, however,
as the weapon swing speed can be modified by stats (Quickness), attack speed buffs (haste), and attack speed de-buffs. The
listed SPD shows what the SPD of the weapon would be if the player had exactly 60 Quickness and was not under the influence
of any attack speed buffs or debuffs.
A little known fact about weapon speeds is that there is a very small bonus to slow weapons � that is, the higher a
weapon�s listed SPD, the more it�s potential damage will be. This slow weapon bonus modifies the overall damage
cap of the weapon by what appears to be .3% for each .1SPD over 2.0SPD. In other words, a 5.0SPD weapon receives a 9% damage
bonus over a 2.0SPD weapon.
It�s also important to note that, like DPS above, the listed SPD of a weapon is a truncated value. Hence any calculations
which deal with the SPD of a weapon have an inherent possible inaccuracy due to the fact that one cannot know exactly where
in the hundredths of a decimal the difference lies � for example, is a 4.2SPD Sword of Ultimate Doom really a 4.295SPD
weapon, while the 4.2SPD Axe of Destruction is really a 4.202SPD weapon, thus making the Sword of Ultimate Doom slightly,
but noticeably, slower than the Axe of Destruction, even though they are both listed in game as 4.2SPD? (Yes, those are fictional
Finally, the base speed of a weapon determines the endurance usage of styles when wielding that weapon � weapons with
a lower base speed generally use less endurance, while weapons with higher base speeds generally use more endurance.
This stat reflects the current condition of the weapon � the more a weapon is used, the lower this stat will get. All
weapons must be kept in good repair, in as high condition as possible, because lower condition affects your damage output.
Lower condition affects your damage in a very insidious way � it has no affect on your potential damage, only your
actual damage. It acts by simply reducing your calculated damage done by the amount shown � for example, if you are
using a 95%CON weapon, and swing at a mob, the game might calculate that this swing would do exactly 100 damage normally.
This damage is then modified by the weapon�s condition, and hence ends up being only 95 damage.
Using higher level weapons will decrease their condition faster, while using lower level weapons will decrease their condition
slower. In general it�s a good idea to keep ones weapons in as good a condition as possible by frequently repairing
them using an NPC Smith or a player Weaponcrafter. Never let a weapon drop below 98-99% condition if you�re concerned
about maintaining maximum damage output.
The quality of a weapon works exactly the same as the condition does, except it is a permanent attribute of a weapon and cannot
be modified in any way. A lower quality weapon has the same potential damage as a higher quality weapon, but the actual damage
done will always be modified by the quality, thus the average damage will be lower.
All weapons and armor have a bonus stat depending on the level of material the item is made from. This bonus ranges from 0%
to 35%. According to Mythic, there is a straight comparison made between the target�s armor bonus and the attacker�s
weapon bonus, and a direct to-hit penalty is applied based on this. For example, if a player wielding a 35%BON weapon attacks
a player wearing 10%BON armor, he gains an immediate 25% bonus to his chances to hit that player.
It doesn't affect how MUCH you hit for, it increases your chances of landing a hit on him at all.
Damage Per Second:
All weapons in Dark Age of Camelot are based around a damage-per-second (DPS) core. This number shows the potential maximum
damage (when modified appropriately) the weapon will do per second at its base speed. This number is not, however, a fixed
number � it is tied directly into the speed (SPD) of the weapon. If the weapon is actually swung faster than the SPD
of the weapon, then the base DPS will increase linearly with the swing speed, and if the weapon is swung slower, than it will
decrease linearly as well. This is very different than most other DPS based effects in DAOC.
The DPS of a weapon also shows the level of the weapon, in that DPS increases by exactly .3 per level with a base of 1.2DPS.
This means a level 1 weapon is 1.5DPS, a level 30 weapon is 10.2DPS, a level 40 weapon is 13.2DPS, and a level 50 weapon is
16.2DPS. This also holds true for the maximum DPS cap of a player wielding a weapon � a level 30 player wielding a
level 50 weapon will have a DPS cap of 10.2DPS, hence the level 50 weapon will act like a level 30 weapon for damage purposes
There are some circumstances where a weapon will have a listed DPS that does not quite match this, in that it will not be
properly divisible by 3. An example of this is the very common appearance of 16.1DPS weapons. These weapons actually are,
for all intents and purposes, exactly the same � the database for this information on weapons extends to the thousandth
of a decimal, yet the interface only prints the tenth. The display issue causes extra confusion because the number is actually
truncated instead of rounded � this means a 16.199DPS weapon is displayed in game as a 16.1DPS weapon, while a 16.200DPS
weapon is displayed as a 16.2DPS weapon � thus these weapons appear to be .1DPS different when in fact they are only
DPS cap per level: The DPS of your wielded weapon is capped BEFORE it is multiplied against the condition and quality of the
item. Because of this, you cannot use high quality items to make up for this cap. The game refers to this as the "clamped
DPS", and you can see this by right clicking on your weapon and hitting the delve command (SHIFT-I). If you are fully able
to utilize a weapon, then your "clamped DPS" will equal the DPS listed on the weapon stats. With the new 1.50 patch, the WeapDam
field of your character stat sheet is supposed to display your effective DPS once all factors are calculated in (quality,
condition, level caps, etc.).
If you delve the weapon and look at the "effective damage" (with a base damage of 16,5DPS)
Master Piece : 16,5
99% : 16,3 (actually 16,335 but rounded)
Condition of the weapon will effect this further as effective damage is calculated by this formula :
Effective dam = Clamped Damage * Quality(%) * Condition(%)
The clamped damage is your maximimum allowed damage at your current lvl:
Clamped Damage = 1.2 + LVL * 0.3
It would be 16.2 at lvl 50 and 16.5 at lvl 50 RR5, as this counts for an additional level
So if your lvl 50, RR4 and have a 99% weapon at condition 97 the effective damage would be:
16.2 * 0.99 * 0.97 = 15.5 (rounded from 15,55686)
Repairing that weapon at a smith will up the damage to 16. Likewise a masterpiece 16.5 dps weapon at 100% condition would
be 16.2 at level 50, and 16.5 at realm rank 5.