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A General Guide to Dark Age of Camelot gameplay mechanics.

Style Growth Formula

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Sources

http://www.keeperofshadows.com/melee/index.html

Spreadsheet InfoFAQ:



This InfoFAQ is intended to go hand in hand with Wyrd’s Style Spreadsheet, linked above, to explain how to interpret the Spreadsheet and its inner workings. Viewing one without the other may be confusing, though as you gain familiarity with the workings of the Spreadsheet (as explained in this document), you will be able to discard this InfoFAQ – but never the Spreadsheet itself!



There are three primary tabs for this spreadsheet, one for each realm. If you click on a realm tab, you will see the available weapon spec lines for that realm, as well as the individual styles in each spec line. Of particular note on this spreadsheet, and what makes it unique and critical to anyone considering the inner workings of melee styles, is Column B, a small number on the left side of each style. This number is what Wyrd has termed the Growth Rate of a style – in a very small nutshell, this Growth Rate is equivalent to the value the game developers have inputted into their style database, which is used by the game to determine how much damage a style will do at any given point.



By using the Growth Rate number, all styles can be compared in an even environment. The higher the Growth Rate on a style, the higher the average style bonus will be when the style is performed, while the lower the Growth Rate, the lower the average style bonus. This means that, for example, a style with a Growth Rate of .8 will on average outperform a style with a Growth Rate of .4 over time.



This Growth Rate, how to use it in calculations beyond a basic comparison of the numbers, and where it comes from, is explained in detail in the questions below.





Frequently Asked Questions



1. How do melee styles that add damage work?



Simplified, a damage style is a DPS (Damage Per Second) based addition to the base melee damage of an attack. It adds damage via a multiplier based on the Growth Rate of the style, weapon specialization in the style’s line, and Effective Speed of the weapon wielded. Higher weapon spec and a higher growth rate will both lead to a larger style multiplier, while higher quickness, a faster weapon, and more haste will both lead to a lower style multiplier (though a faster swing rate on the same speed weapon will always have a higher damage output over time in spite of a smaller style multiplier).



To walk through a basic example, let's assume a player used a style on an opponent and saw the following output in his chat screen:



You perform your Test Style perfectly! (+50)

You hit your test subject for 150 damage!



We immediately know two things from the above lines: The style added 50 damage to the attack (shown by the style bonus, which is the +50 on the style line), and the attack would have done 100 damage if it had been unstyled (by taking the total damage of 150 and subtracting the 50 style bonus from it). Anyone that regularly attacks with melee styles understands that the style bonus and the base damage both tend to vary constantly - the same style might add +50 on this attack, but might add +70 on the next. What most players don't realize is that currently in DAOC, there is only one random roll where variance is seen, and that is on the base damage of an attack. The ratio of the style bonus to the base damage will always remain the same, thus when players see the style bonus fluctuating, it is only due to the fluctuation of the base damage (as long as effective speed and weapon spec remain the same) – note that this also means it is critical to overall style effectiveness that the base damage be as high as possible, as the higher the base damage is, the higher the style bonus will be.



Looking at the above example, we can determine what we call the Style Multiplier, which is the relationship of the style damage to the base damage. To do this, we take the total damage dealt, and divide it by the damage that would have been dealt if the hit was unstyled. In this particular example, that leads us to 150/100 = 1.5 – this is our Style Multiplier. This means that any further hits we perform using that style (again, as long as spec and effective speed remain the same), the style will always increase our base damage by 1.5 times. The following is another example of a typical melee hit, where the base damage is slightly lower (due perhaps to the target being a higher level mob), yet the style multiplier will remain exactly the same:



You perform your Test Style perfectly! (+30)

You hit your test subject for 90 damage!



Thus, we see that while the base damage varies, the connection between the base damage and the style bonus (the Style Multiplier) will always remain a constant as long as no changes are made to the equipment used - regardless of the target being attacked. More base damage means a higher style bonus and more overall damage, while less base damage means a lower style bonus and less overall damage, yet the entire time the relation between the style bonus and the base damage will be exactly the same.



2. How does the Growth Rate on the spreadsheet relate to actual damage dealt and the Style Multiplier?



Wyrd has spent a lot of time tracking this down, and after extensive testing and analysis, has come to the following conclusion (these are fairly easy to follow formulas but do require some thinking about) about how to determine a style multiplier (which works as described above) for a given style:



((Growth Rate * Weapon Spec) * Effective Speed) / Unstyled Damage Cap



The following shows how to determine the values for the variables above:



1) Growth Rate: Consult the left column of Wyrd’s Spreadsheet.



2) Weapon Spec: Check the modified weapon specialization for the appropriate style being used by examining your character sheet in-game. For example, if you are using an Alb Thrust style, and your weapon spec is 34+12, then the value for this variable will be 46.



3) Effective Speed: This is the actual speed at which the weapon being wielded is swung. Stats such as Quickness over 60 increase your swing speed, as do “haste” spells. To determine your effective speed, use the following equation, where SPD is the stat listed in a delve of that weapon for speed*, Quickness is the value of that stat listed in your character sheet, and Haste% is the percentage value of any haste buffs the character may be using (see the Camelot Herald for exact percentages for haste buffs):



Effective Speed = SPD * ( 1 – ( Quickness – 60 ) / 500) ) * ( 1 – Haste%)



It’s important to note that in some occasions, this Effective Speed may drop below 1.5 – unfortunately the game caps melee attacks at 1.5 seconds, hence if your effective speed drops that low, you need to reassess the weapons you are using. For the purposes of these equations, please change any Effective Speed below 1.5 to exactly 1.5.



*NOTE: For Left Axe users, your actual swing speed is determined by averaging the SPD of the Right Axe and the Left Axe. Since the style multipliers than Left Axe adds are only affected by the Effective Speed of the mainhand weapon, and not the actual swing speed, please use only the SPD value of your mainhand weapon for these calculations. (This also applies to Celtic Dual and Dual Wield users, who see the same “haste” effects when both weapons actually swing, but this haste effect is less commonly counted on with those spec lines as the offhand swing is not a guarantee and hence the haste effect of a slow/fast weapon is not reliable)


4) Unstyled Damage Cap: To obtain the unstyled damage cap of a weapon, you must hit a target with an Armor Factor that is considerably lower than your Weapon Skill without using a melee style. The easiest and most common way to do this is to go to a low level area and hit a very low level gray mob – it’s best to hit two or three to make sure that you are seeing the same damage on all of them.



Once the above calculations have been made, the Style Multiplier will be found. Note that this will vary with weapon spec and stats such that two different people will rarely see the same Style Multiplier.



Using the above formula, it’s possible to illustrate how style bonuses vary depending on a player’s weapon spec and weapon speed, etc. For example, it’s possible to generate Style Multipliers across a range of weapon specs for a character, keeping all other stats the same, and apply those multipliers to a typical base damage hit to see how much impact weapon spec has on a particular style.



3. Can you show me how the Growth Rate is really accurate?



Absolutely. Using actual in-game attacks and data that were done without looking at Wyrd’s Spreadsheet, the following examples show how the Growth Rate is an accurate real reflection of how styles work in the Real World (well, in the Real Game that is), across many different levels of toons, specializations, and realms:



(note: These are example cases. Tests in reality may yield varying results as rounding does have a significant effect on the calculations. If you run into constant discrepancies, please PM Wyrd77 on the VN)



Example #1: Infiltrator using the Garrote Style



For this example, the character is a level 50, Realm Rank 5 Infiltrator. This character is heavily buffed with the best Cleric specline buffs available. He has a Quickness of 255, a weapon spec of 50+15 Critical Strike, and is wielding two 2.9SPD Long Dirks – he is not under the effect of any haste buffs. First, we will calculate his Effective Speed:



2.9 * ( 1 – ( 255 – 60 ) / 500) ) * ( 1 – 0) = 1.769 Effective Speed



This means that our Infiltrator will swing his 2.9SPD weapon at a rate of once every 1.769 seconds. Before we can use this Effective Speed in the final calculation, however, we must determine the unstyled damage cap of the Infiltrator while using these weapons and buffed in this manner. In this case, we simply had the Infiltrator attack, unstyled, a sitting level 50 Cleric who was wearing no armor. The Infiltrator consistently hit the Cleric for 147 damage, which shows that his unstyled damage cap is exactly that. An alternative method of discovering this would have been to attack a level 0 mob in the same manner.



Now that we have the Effective Speed and the unstyled damage cap of the weapon being used, the next step is to calculate, using the Growth Rate on Wyrd’s Spreadsheet, what the Style Multiplier for this character will be. First, we obtain the Growth Rate from looking on the Spreadsheet, where we see that Garrote has a Growth Rate of exactly .75. Now, plug that into the formula including the Growth Rate, the Effective Speed, and the Weapon Specialization of the Infiltrator, and we get:



((.75 * 65) * 1.769) / 147 = .58665




This means that any time we use the Garrote style on this Infiltrator, it should add an extra 58.665% of his base damage as a style bonus. For example, if he were to hit a mob for 100 damage, but used the Garrote style, he would see output such as:



You perform your Garrote perfectly! (+58)

You hit the test mob for 158 damage!



This all works well on paper, but does it bear out in reality? Let’s see! The following is an excerpt of an actual chat.log where the above described Infiltrator, with the same stats and weapons as described, attacked a standing L50 Cleric in epic armor using the Garrote style:



[18:46:14] You perform your Garrote perfectly. (+61)
[18:46:14] You attack Squawker with your sword and hit for 168 (+3) damage!



The first thing you’ll notice is that in all of the examples above, we have assumed no resistances. For players unfamiliar with the way melee (and magical) resists work, the amount in parentheses after the damage shows how much of that damage was either added or substracted due to resistances. In the above instance, +3 damage was added because the target was weak to thrust. Since our calculations only concern actual damage, the resistances are ignored – hence the total damage dealt was 168 – 3 = 165.



In Question 1 above, we explained how to get the Style Multiplier from this kind of output. In this particular example, we see:



165 / (165 – 61) = 1.58654




If we compare this actual real-world Style Multiplier (1.58654) to the ideal multiplier according to our calcution (.58665% = 1.58665) we see that they are remarkably close. In this particular situation, the very small variance (in the tenths of a percent) can likely be attributed to the way the game rounds numbers. Clearly, 1.58665 is close enough to 1.58654 to prove that in this circumstance, the Growth Rate for the Garrote style according to Wyrd’s Style Spreadsheet is 100% accurate.



As an exercise in application, we can reverse calculate this particular melee hit shown in our log, changing the amount of weapon specialization. Using the math above, let’s pretend that this same Infiltrator (same weapon, same effective speed) was only spec’d to 39+11 Critical Strike, for a total of 50 instead of 65. Since the Critical Strike specialization line only affects style damage, and not base damage, we can show that if this character was spec’d to a total of 50 Critical Strike and had made the same melee attack, it would have looked like this:



[18:46:14] You perform your Garrote perfectly. (+49)
[18:46:14] You attack Squawker with your sword and hit for 154 (+3) damage!



It’s interesting to note that while the extra 15 weapon spec in the Critical Strike line certainly makes a noticeable difference in this circumstance, it’s not an incredibly massive amount. Obviously if this was a base weapon spec, the 15 points would have affected base damage as well, thus the impact of the extra 15 points would be more noticeable.



Example #2: Blademaster using the Bumblebee’s Sting style



In this example, the subject is a level 40 Blademaster with 40+3 Pierce. He is wielding a 3.5SPD weapon which has a 144 damage cap, and has a Quickness of 136.



3.5 * ( 1 – ( 136 – 60 ) / 500) ) * ( 1 – 0) = 2.968 Effective Speed



The following is a from an actual log of said Blademaster using this style with the above mentioned stats against a red con mob:



[21:28:48] You perform your Bumblebee's Sting perfectly. (+18)

[21:28:48] You attack the nasty sylvanshade with your sword and hit

for 46 (-8) damage!



To determine the actual Style Multiplier from this example:



54 / (54 – 18) = 1.5




To determine the percentage increase based on the Growth Rate in the Spreadsheet:



((.58 * 43) * 2.968) / 144 = .51




Comparing the percentage increase of .51% (1.51x) to the actual Style Multiplier of 1.5x, we see again that the spreadsheet is accurate in this circumstance.



4. Why does this all matter?



It’s really quite simple – once the Growth Rate for a style has been determined, tested, and confirmed, it becomes a baseline number that can be used to compare the effectiveness of the style across all specs, weapons, and realms. Unlike tests that compare actual melee damage, there is no inaccuracy due to relics, stats, weapon type, test mobs/players, etc. – it is a flat out, 100% accurate number that clearly points out whether Style A will outperform Style B if everything is the same. Want to know what the most damaging style in the game is? The one with the highest Growth Rate – it’s that simple. Want to know if that Warrior is hitting your Hero harder than you hit him because he has better styles? Compare the Growth Rates, and there’s your answer. Want to know if it’s better to spec Hammer or Axe if all you care about is raw damage output? Compare the Growth Rates of the styles in those two lines, and there’s your answer.



Having the Growth Rates of these styles makes this spreadsheet an extremely valuable tool for those looking to really get into the game and compare melee styles.



5. How do the Assassination styles work?



Assassination styles (BS, BS2, PA) work differently than normal styles. Since these styles can only be used as an opener from stealth, these styles have had the DPS portion coded out and just add a static damage value. This allows for assassins to use fast weapons and still hit hard with their assassination styles. Furthermore, since the assassination styles add a static damage amount, faster weapons actually allow for a higher DPS than slower weapons in this case. Thus, one can debate the benefits of a slow assassination weapon versus a fast one.



Perforate Artery Cap = 75 + Critical Strike Spec * 9 + Nonstyle Cap

Backstab II Cap = 45 + Critical Strike Spec * 6 + Nonstyle Cap

Backstab I Cap = ~5 + Critical Strike Spec * 14 / 3 + Nonstyle Cap



6. Starter Styles



The starter styles also do not seem to have a growth rate. Some are adding +6 damage, others +10. Overall there has not been much study into these styles since they are rarely used past level 5.



7. Known Bugs



There are a few styles that work oddly which are still being analyzed by the testing community. This section will be updated as we get more information. All of these bugs have been reported to the Devs.



1) Ripper – Style sometimes performs with a high Growth Rate other times with a low growth rate. No consistency has been found to the style’s damage as of yet.

2) Sidewinder – Style is not growing with spec.

3) Growth Rate Glitch – Sometimes a style will hit for much less than its growth rate would indicate. This is a fairly seldom occurrence (<2%), but instances can be found in data sets



8. Final Comments



This document is a living document in that it may change at any moment with or without notice. New examples, grammatical changes and the possible event of patch changes or bug effects may be added or removed at any time. Jay nor Peter is in no way responsible for any actions you take after reading this document. This information is merely here to inform.



Please feel free to use this document as you see fit. However, any reproduction of any of the information within this document should be properly cited back to the original source. If you believe you have found an error in this document or the Spreadsheet, please make sure to include detailed logs and information and contact Wyrd77 on the Vault Network.





InfoFAQ written by Peter Waterman (aka Squawking Tiger), with massive collusion and feedback from Jay Ambrosini (aka Wyrd) – Jay is the originator of the formulas and concepts found explained within this document, Pete just helped write the FAQ. ;)