Welcome to Project: Gorgon!


Project: Gorgon is a 3D fantasy MMORPG (massively-multiplayer online role-playing game) that features an immersive experience that allows the player to forge their own path through exploration and discovery. We won't be guiding you through a world on rails, and as a result there are many hidden secrets awaiting discovery. Project: Gorgon also features an ambitious skill based leveling system that bucks the current trend of pre-determined classes, thus allowing the player to combine skills in order to create a truly unique playing experience.

The Project: Gorgon development team is led by industry veteran Eric Heimburg. Eric has over a decade of experience working as a Senior and Lead Engineer, Developer, Designer and Producer on successful games such as Asheron’s Call 1 and 2, Star Trek Online and other successful Massively Multiplayer Online Games.



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  1. #1
    Senior Member Yaffy's Avatar
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    Estimating the Value of Mitigation

    When I talk about tanking and damage reduction, some players get confused when I mention the "Value" of different mitigation types. What does it mean when someone says one source of mitigation is more "Valuable" than another? I wanted to make this thread to try and answer these questions, as well as to give some insight on how building around damage reduction works.

    As any player knows, damage and attacks are separated into different types and categories, such as melee, ranged, physical, elemental, etc. Just like how attacks have different types, players have to build defense towards specific damage types because the vast majority of defensive bonuses only work towards certain damage. For example, using equipment with fire resistance on it will help you against enemies that do fire damage, but it will be worthless against enemies that do cold damage.
    However, damage types are unevenly distributed. For example, physical damage types are significantly more common than other damage types across the game. This means that overall, 1 physical mitigation is more valuable than 1 mitigation in other types since it will reduce more damage.

    The difficult part is trying to calculate the exact value of different mitigation. 1 slashing mitigation might be more valuable than 1 lightning mitigation, but by how much? Is 1 slashing worth 5 lightning mitigation? How about 10? What makes this more difficult is that this value could change depending on where you are. There are lots of places where lightning damage enemies don't exist, and therefore slashing mitigation is infinitely more useful in those cases. Furthermore, their value changes depending on your current mitigation. Physical mitigation might be more valuable normally, but the more you build into it, the more damage other damage types will do in comparison, therefore making them more valuable. After all, it doesn't help much if you're immune to physical damage if the occasional lightning mob is the one killing you.

    Weighing Damage Types
    In order to figure out the value of mitigation, we can give damage types a "Weight", which is to say what percentage of damage we expect to take. For example, if we expect 60% of the damage we take to be slashing, and 40% of the damage to be fire, then we can say that the value of the two damage types is 3:2. To put this into practical terms, an "Optimal" build in this case would build 2 fire resistance for every 3 slashing resistance.

    As an example, I have created spreadsheet to estimate the weight of different damage types in Gazluk Keep, the current end game dungeon in Gorgon. To do this, I listed each elite enemy in the dungeon and which forms of attacks they do. Essentially, it's counting damage types to moves.


    So with this, I have created an estimate of the value of each damage type. Now obviously this chart is not completely accurate for many reasons. First off, players have some control over what attacks hit them, while this chart assumes you'll get hit by everything. Secondly, the chart assumes you'll be fighting everything and in equal numbers, which is almost certainly not going to happen. Lastly, I am assuming each enemy does the same DPS, which isn't true. I wanted to get exact DPS numbers, but unfortunately it's very difficult to get that through the json files. Lastly, this chart doesn't account for non-elite mobs, which you may or may not want to pay attention to. However, even with these issues, the chart still gives a helpful estimate, and the discrepancy between certain damage values reveals a lot.

    Observations for Gazluk Keep
    So based off of the above chart, we can draw a lot of conclusions (For GK specifically). You can make your own conclusions based on your specific build, but here are some general observations.
    1. A majority of damage in Gazluk comes from melee attacks. This means melee evasion is the most useful form of reducing damage overall.
    2. Slashing is the most common form of damage, followed by Fire. This means tank players should make sure to build these
    3. Ice, Trauma, Psychic, Nature and Electric damage are not particularly important.

    Some more specific observations we can make are how helpful certain sources of mitigation are. For example, Unarmed has a mod that reduces physical damage by 18% passively. If we estimate that 56% of the damage in Gazluk is physical, then we can say that the mod reduces damage in Gazluk by 10.08%. We can use that number to compare it to other sources of mitigation.
    For example, Shield's Elemental Ward gives 100% elemental resistance, but only for 10 seconds. Because it has a 30 second cooldown, we can say that this buff has a 33% upkeep time and therefore reduces Elemental damage by 33%(Actually slightly less, but let's keep things simple). If a player was using this ability all the time, they would reduce GK's damage by 6.33%. Therefore, with no other forms of mitigation, the unarmed passive will reduce more damage overall.

    Here's the kicker though, physical mitigation is significantly easier to get than elemental mitigation. It's not difficult for an unarmed user to get 50% physical resistance or more through their other abilities. Let's make the same decision again, but assume the player already has 50% physical resistance. In this case, physical damage would now have a weight of 28%, and elemental would have a weight of about 31%. In this case, the unarmed passive would have a value of only 5.04%, and Elemental Ward would have a value of 10.33%. This is an excellent example of how the value of certain defenses change as you build, and why it's important to have a good mix of different mitigations.

    With that said, here are some notable forms of mitigation:
    Blocking Stance: 18.6%
    Telka's Teeth "Canine" : 13.6%(Very notable for being evasion based, and therefore stacks with damage type mitigation very well. ALSO RAKSHASA ONLY)
    Headbutt: 15.12% (Average when fully modded)
    Combat Echolation: 7% (Not a lot, but scales perfectly with everything)

    Conclusion
    Anyways, I hope that this gives a bit of insight on how to "Weigh" different forms of mitigation against one another, and hopefully it will help with building/designing damage mitigation builds! This is something I wanted to do for a bit, so hopefully it's helpful for someone out there. Also this should explain why I get so excited at something as silly as a 15% fire resistance hat being added to the game. (Also thanks Beta for your help with the json files. They were very useful even if I couldn't get exact damage numbers).

    P.S. Yes, the simple act of being a Rakshasa and drinking an easy to get potion will make you a better tank than the vast majority of skills and stacks with the best ones incredibly well, basically acting as a third tanking skill. It also gives melee tanks a lot of extra damage! Telka's teeth might be a bit unfair.
    Last edited by Yaffy; 06-21-2019 at 04:47 PM.

  2. #2
    Member ErDrick's Avatar
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    It is more then "a bit unfair" for something so significant to be racially restricted with zero alternatives, but there might be alternatives in the future so, can't really get into that yet. Of course there is more then one uber effect from rakkie restricted potions to choose from, which just makes it that much more asinine. The racial restriction seems a bit arbitrary at the same time, not sure why he added those for just one race. I mean, if he plans to add other racial potions later then he definitely should have waited to unveil those, and if not... then why are they restricted to a single race. For now though not only can non-rakkie players not compete in terms of tankyness, but they also cannot compete with damage dealing potential either.

    Also I know I've already said this to death, but it is going to be extremely hard for Citan to balance this game as is with only one skill having significant access to percentage based mitigation. If he balances for that one modifier then nobody else will be able to tank anything going forwards, and if he does not balance for that effect then anyone using that skill will find content to be ridiculously easy. It has to go or be available to more skills, I'm sure we're in agreement on that though. ( getting rid of it seems like it would eat less dev time then rebalancing every other skill though ). I think there is a big problem at this point as it has gone on for so long now, some people are not going to be happy if that gets nerfed. The other alternative ( and I have literally been saying this for years now) is reducing mob damage and increasing mob health still, because percent based mitigation loses effectiveness if you are not getting hit for 300-900, in addition to that it reduces a lot of the other issues combat currently has.

    The crafting aspects of this game are so well fleshed out ( although they get a bit convoluted for my tastes, and of course some skills are still missing completely aka jewelry, weapons, metal armor) but the combat side is just "kill them before they can kill you, or go unarmed and just pull 5-10 mobs and laugh". Combat and especially group combat, feels like an afterthought.

    I remember some years ago Citan made a post about where he wanted combat to be, he said something along the lines of wanting it to take like 40 seconds to kill a single mob. That just isn't ( and was never) possible though with the amount of incoming damage players take, you cant really survive any fight at level that lasts that long ( unless you are using unarmed atm) So, what we ended up with was everyone building for extreme damage, because the choice was never given to build another way ( unless you like failing). And also that could never work out currently because he tends to also throw somewhere between 3 to a bazillion mobs at us at the same time with no tools to avoid that except body pulling, which is well and good except wandering pathers kinda screw that all up regardless. To me overcrowding mobs is a real issue that just sucks fun out of the game, ESPECIALLY combined with reducing a players ability to deal with crowds. It feels like it is going two opposite directions at the same time and it gets frustrating.

    Maybe what he wants has changed, and that's fine... but we have no idea because he isn't telling us. I know what I want to see though, I want to see slower but more meaningful combat more akin to everquest. In that game it actually DID take you 30-40 seconds to solo a trash mob ( or longer) but at-level they also didn't have the potential to kill you in 4 seconds either. Not only would that solve a plethora of combat related issues, but it would also slow down players to an extent where one player cant kill every single mob in a lower level dungeon. For instance right now I could run through crypt / hand/ borghilde/ brainbug /mushroom/ animal nexus / boarded basement/ red crystal/the first part of goblins( up to annexes) / the first part of DC/ ( etc etc) and kill every single mob that exists on the map in under 5 minutes, 10 at most... this is not good for newer players that might be trying to experience these places. I mean, this is his baby, and it's fine if that's NOT what he wants anymore, but since I don't actually know what he wants, I am giving feedback on the assumption his mindset hasn't changed.

    I get that people are not going to be happy if you focus on balance at the expense of releasing new content, but there will be more stuff that needs balancing going forwards if you don't handle it now before it really does become such a huge undertaking that it's not even worth it to try. The other alternative is to say "fuck balance" and just let everyone be overpowered... probably easier, and there can be fun in that approach but it is also less satisfying.

    At this point I'm not sure if Citan still even wants my feedback, if that is the case please just tell me and I will go on my merry way. If not, I will do my best to help you realize your vision. But it would be super-helpful in that case to know what your current vision regarding combat actually is.





    P.S. I'm sorry for putting this bullshit in your thread Yaffy, I just started with the comments about rakkie potions and it sort of got out of hand. I guess that's what happens when I don't post for a while.

  3.   Click here to go to the next staff post in this thread.   #3
    Administrator Citan's Avatar
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    In terms of combat length I'm basically trying to get battles to last long enough that there can be nuance and difference to each monster. I've long since realized 40 seconds (or even 20 seconds) isn't going to be possible without a lot of annoying restrictions. EverQuest has a lot of very forceful game systems in place, including trash monsters that require grouping, punitive XP formula if a group has members with too divergent of a level range, HUGE level-up power increases combined with huge monster XP drop-offs to push people to new content every level, etc.

    Without a lot of those forceful systems, we aren't going to achieve really long fights for trash monsters. But I'm still trying to make combat last long enough that a 12-second DoT isn't "lol that's useless since the combat will have been over for 11 seconds". I don't know exactly how far I can get there, since I don't have the time to try to rebalance/redesign literally the whole game yet again. So we'll see. I will be happy if the average solo monster takes 10 seconds to kill at an appropriate level, and that is a reachable goal... but that may not be good enough if a high-level person can still kill low-level trash instantly (and has a motivation to do so). We may need more gameplay blockers like XP reduction to help with the different problems. But I only like to add restrictive systems as a last resort. There are a lot of ways you can play the game, and adding restrictions tends to make one gameplay style better, but often kills off other ways of playing.

    Anyway, the point is, I don't have an exact combat length in mind, and change is slow because there aren't any easy dials I can change to magically make combat longer. For instance, increasing monster health means players run out of Power, and increasing max Power changes... a million other things. Every change cascades into other changes, and I have a lot of hats to wear, only one of which is game-balancer. So right now I'm taking it slow and iteratively, picking and choosing when to jump into a new cascading balance problem, while also nerfing serious outlier builds that are making it even harder to move things where I want them.

    As for the existence of difficult-to-obtain-en-masse drugs with serious debilitating effects being available only to rakshasa, that's because Rahu is in the game and the other races' core locations aren't. There will be lots of weird shit for every race eventually. (Will the races be balanced? Well, let's not jump to conclusions, but we'll give it a shot!) If those potions seem wildly too powerful in practice, though, then that's useful feedback. The high-powered versions are also supposed to be pretty rare, so if you're getting enough of them to reliably run GK with them, that sounds like there's a bug somewhere...
    Last edited by Citan; 06-21-2019 at 02:06 AM.

  4. #4
    Member ErDrick's Avatar
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    @Yaffy, I'm sorry again for putting this here. This thread was just supposed to be a handy explanation of weights of defensive stats ( and you did a good job of that, btw)

    @Citan Whenever I post on the forums I always feel like I'm running the risk of making you depressed or just plain pissed off, putting myself in your shoes I can see that happening... maybe I'm just paranoid but that's how I feel so I rarely post anymore. But I also have to be sounding like a broken record at this point and I'm sorry about that.

    That said, I highly appreciate you taking a moment as you did here, to give me/us an idea of what you actually are going for. To be honest you went in the right direction I think with the recent GK test changes, but not far enough. I do realize that every change has a cascading effect by the way, I have to intentionally stop myself from going into cascade details when I suggest things, because most times I actually DO consider them and how to fix them... I basically just say to myself "well if he ever wants more details and asks, I'll go into that", otherwise every post about balance would turn into a 10 page essay. For instance increasing mob health not only has player power issues to attend to, but also has an effect on their rage abilities, density, respawn, the armor system, how much damage the players are going to take, how pissed off people are going to get waiting for more content and if balance is even worth it over that, and that needs to be considered, etc etc etc.

    I really wish I knew something about coding, because sitting there thinking up balance stuff would be something I think I'd be reasonably good at, even if it had to come through trial and error. This is sort of a bad format to actually have a constructive discussion about something that has so many levels and unforseen consequences to it though, I get what you mean I think ( not that you mentioned that specifically but that it's a factor). I kind of wish I could have a few beers with you and really discuss this stuff, hopefully you are discussing it internally though (but I don't live very far from you actually).

    I just deleted a paragraph here about how sentient monsters need to drop councils to alleviate inventory concerns (and how / why it would) but I realized that could lead to the unforseen consequence of botting. Nothing is ever simple, I get where you're coming from.

    Edit- forgot to hit enter once and leave a space.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Niph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    The high-powered [potion] versions are also supposed to be pretty rare, so if you're getting enough of them to reliably run GK with them, that sounds like there's a bug somewhere...
    It might just be that people (like me) that can't use them sell them to vendors. So they might not be so rare, in practice, for the few that really use them.

  6.   This is the last staff post in this thread.   #6
    Administrator Citan's Avatar
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    Yeah, in retrospect I should have left this alone as I suspect it's going to derail Yaffy's excellent thread. Well to bring it back around to mitigation: one of the trickiest things is that different content will be very different. Orcs are predominantly melee martial fighters, so that's sort of GK's thing, but at higher level we'll have dungeons full of demons, snake people, and all kinds of other stuff that are less inclined to use swords and hammers. (That said, I expect physical mitigation will always be a bit more useful than the others, just because so many monsters have claws and pincers and so on.)

    Since I'm still using GK as the prototype for group combat, I've already made some changes to it for next update -- and I may make a few more based on this thread, just to make it a bit more varied. GK is a really big place, after all...

  7. #7
    Member Mbaums's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    ... For instance, increasing monster health means players run out of Power...
    Let them run out of power.

    This would make bard more valuable, mentalism power wave more valuable, and the endurance power regen mods more powerful. If people run a high power skill like fire magic, they should think about other group members giving them power or pairing it with a skill that'll help their power issues.

    Side note, if combat regen ticks more often, the potential for a wasted tick from max power becomes less of an issue.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Yaffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ErDrick View Post
    Yaffy, I'm sorry again for putting this here. This thread was just supposed to be a handy explanation of weights of defensive stats ( and you did a good job of that, btw)
    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    Yeah, in retrospect I should have left this alone as I suspect it's going to derail Yaffy's excellent thread.
    No worries, I don't mind at all, as long as it leads to some productive discussion. I was mostly just doing a big info dump and didn't really know if I'd get many replies on it anyways, since I don't know what kind of comments people would make.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    That said, I expect physical mitigation will always be a bit more useful than the others, just because so many monsters have claws and pincers and so on.
    Since I'm still using GK as the prototype for group combat, I've already made some changes to it for next update -- and I may make a few more based on this thread, just to make it a bit more varied. GK is a really big place, after all...
    That's ok, because physical mitigation is very common and easy to get. By default, physical mitigation is the most important for any character, but as people build more of it, it's more important for them to build other types of mitigation. In fact, it would actually be very unfair if all the damage types were spread out evenly, as some forms of resistance are very difficult to acquire.

    I commonly state that fire is actually the most valuable resistance, despite my chart stating that there's only half as much fire as there is slashing. That's because it's very easy to get to a point where you can reduce slashing damage by more than half (Unmodded Staff already reduces it by 53%), but fire damage mitigation is very limited and therefore it will usually end up being the problem for any "Tank" build. If you made it so every damage type was even, then players would have difficulty building defenses against some of them just because there aren't enough good tools for it in the game.

    For example, electric is mostly unmitigatable because there's even fewer good sources of defense against it than fire. If a lot more electric mobs were added to Gazluk, that would mean the difference between a dedicated tank build and a character with no mitigation would shrink, because both would take very similar damage. Currently, tanking can be quite noticeable mostly because a majority of the damage is physical, and therefore players can build against it and take significantly less damage overall compared to other characters.

    Basically what I'm trying to say is that although it might sound bad to have uneven damage types, it's totally fine since the availability of mitigation to players is also uneven. If a big majority of mitigation leans towards physical damage, that's ok if physical damage makes up a majority of the damage players are taking. It's not the best scenario, but it's not bad either. In a perfect world, we would have a diverse set of damage types, but we would also have a lot of options to build around them as well. A world where there's a diverse set of damage types but no way to build around a lot of them is a nightmare!

    P.S If you want to give players more damage resistance, I would say a good way to add it in fairly would be to put it on equipment as a base property (Possibly dropping near the mob or from it). That way everyone can use it, but by taking up an equipment slot it means players need to make choices between that resistance or other items in that slot.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    The high-powered versions are also supposed to be pretty rare, so if you're getting enough of them to reliably run GK with them, that sounds like there's a bug somewhere...
    I have over 50, mostly from buying them from used vendors like Niph said. Since the potions are inherently useless to many players, it's very easy to buy them. They might be troublesome for one player to farm, but the player base collects a lot overall. I don't think players would have trouble buying enough Canine from other players as two or three is all you need for one run. Even if it was very hard to collect, the weaker versions of the potion are still quite useful as well. Even the molar version, which is half as strong, has a higher value than Elemental Ward according to my estimates, and that's one of the biggest reasons to run Shield in a tanking set! I honestly don't think the withdrawal effect matters, because the potion is so useful and easy to collect (In some version) that you should basically have it up all the time anyways and only suffer withdrawal when you're done fighting.

    I hate to ruin stuff that makes the classes unique, but even if there are planned to be similar items for other races, I'm not sure if I like the idea of them boosting specific things. Telka's Tooth is most helpful to tanks who use melee attacks, so this essentially makes Rakshasa THE race to play for melee tanks (And makes anyone playing Human/Elf tank regret their decision). Unless if the other race's versions do the same thing, this goads each race into playing a certain style. If the Human/Elf variant boosted ranged damage instead, then that would make them the ranged class (And make anyone playing ranged builds on Rakshasa gets upset).

    Something that might make the potions a bit less painful is trying to make their effects more flexible so they aren't "Role specific". Right now the Telka's Teeth is much more helpful for melee users than ranged users, and while melee evasion is helpful for anyone, it's significantly more helpful for tanks, so anyone who wants to make a melee tank should clearly play Rakshasa unless if the other racial consumables do the same thing or are even better. However, if the potions increased all direct damage and gave burst evasion instead, that would be helpful to all Rakshasa in general. If all the racial consumables were designed in a similar manner, this would avoid the issue of certain roles being blatantly better on specific races, while still allowing for useful, racially locked consumables. Some balance problems are still unavoidable, as it's almost certain that some race will have better general boosts for a specific build than another race (At least in someone's opinion), but at least it will be better than having no, or minimal boosts for "Picking the wrong race" for the kind of build you want to play.
    Last edited by Yaffy; 06-21-2019 at 02:47 PM.

  9. #9
    Member SausageJavelins's Avatar
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    With much science: The Yaffinator tackles mitigation

    Nicely done sir. I love the spreadsheet as a visual with the damage types colored by class. Also, gathering whatever mound of data you also had to parse through was no small feat either, I'm guessing. Best of all, there's some expert, boiled-down tanking advice that new and old players should note.

    I will definitely take these numbers into account.
    🗡️Sharp knives🗡️and 💔hurtful words💔
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    Leader of the Dragon Moon Clan, Project: Gorgon aspect

  10. #10
    Member Mbaums's Avatar
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    Side note, you forgot to mention booze-buffs. I had a 5.5% melee evasion beer at the brown ale level. I'm having trouble finding the effect on the JSON parser--but its a thing for sure.

    The pure evasion stuff is really nice, but wouldnt it go to trash once you got stunned? I'd call it more of a limitation to this analysis vs a flaw though.

    That potion is worth talking about, and I think with it stacking (in your bags) to 10, I'm not sure how I feel about using them. I have not been keeping an eye out on buy-used tabs for them so I don't have many. The curse time+effect is fairly rough, but I think I'm the only one who thinks of the curse as bad.

    It's worth testing in a group but I really see the test going like, "I pulled 6, it was going well until something stunned me".



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