Ranged Combat

Discussion in 'Arcanum Hints & Tips' started by telesien13, Dec 18, 2010.

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  1. telesien13

    telesien13 New Member

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    Hi, new player to Arcanum, but long-time RPG veteran here.

    It seems like the original Arcanum makes ranged combat really suck. I tried my first character with specialization on firearms, but every combat was extremely hard, so I quickly switched to melee one and became 3 times as deadly (5 attacks instead of 2 without need for bullets and roughly the same damage). Am I doing something wrong or is just how the game is? Someone on other forum wrote about some mod to improve that part of combat, but he didn't remember its name and I can't find it.

    The reason why I'm asking is that it pretty much suck to have steampunk game where melee characters are that much more powerful. I don't think gunslinger should rule, but he should be at least as useful as normal fighter.

    Oh and I am using the latest official patch and the WIP 6.0. I don't know if the unofficial patch can be combined with that or how usefull WIP actually is.
     
  2. DaneKoponen

    DaneKoponen Member

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    Yeah, while ranged characters can certainly do just fine, in my opinion melee is more powerful, or, at the very least, much easier to do.

    Part of the problem is how STR boosts melee damage, and that your skills are all dex bases, meaning you're faster anyways. Almost any melee character will get 20+ strength, giving a huge damage bonus, and 20 dex, giving a massive speed bonus. So in general a simple "beat you to death" ogre build will be have more attacks doing more damage per round than a ranged hero. In addition, he will probably be a master of Dodge, and have far more life.

    On the other hand, spell casters can wave a hand and vaporize anything from existence completely.

    If you're looking for a perfectly balanced game, this probably isn't it- on the other hand, the variety and re-playability, combined with the interesting plots and side-quests, make this one of my favorites of all time :)
     
  3. telesien13

    telesien13 New Member

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    Ouch, so the difference I noticed when advancing from 1st to 5th level will be even worse....

    That is not very reasuring. In that case I would definetely like to know which mod addresses this "issue."
     
  4. ytzk

    ytzk Well-Known Member

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    Firearms suck in Arcanum, yet they're very popular. Consequently, most of the unoffical patches uprade firearms to some degree. Drog's patch is a good one.
     
  5. Krycek

    Krycek New Member

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    ... yet it doesn't upgrade your firearms in any way.
     
  6. ytzk

    ytzk Well-Known Member

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    Oh! I was thinking of A:WIP. Which patch does that include? It sure makes firearms fun and effective.
     
  7. Muro

    Muro Well-Known Member

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    That would be Otto Krupp's Arcanum Ranged Weapon Mod, probably. It is included, anyway.
     
  8. telesien13

    telesien13 New Member

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    I shudder when I think how ineffective my guy would have been without WIP already installed. Well since it seems I won't be able to make any other improvement, I thank you for your help and I hope that with more experience, I will master gunslinger anyway.
     
  9. symban

    symban New Member

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    the point of firearms is;

    to be a successful melee combatant you need some real body training. without being dexterious and strong enough you wont reach the limits of your power. And you will need to engage the opponent in melee as well.

    while any sickly character (my miracle operation human technie) with 5 STR/ 3 CONS / 5 DEX can handle a long range pistol and deal 10-30 damage per bullet with decent speed from pretty far away. I have the range advantage over my opponents. if they get close enough I can always skirmish (go back a little, shot again) when coupled with technological miracles (charged ring*2 = 4 DEX, Fatigue Limiter, Traps, Molotov C., Stun Grenade, Poison which lower opponent STR as well) I can dish out pretty much tactics compared to the melee charcter who can only go head to head with opponent like some uncivilized barbarian! (RP is nice in Arcanum, try wearing Barbarian Clothes it will affect NPC reactions as I recall)

    well of course melee can also apply many tactics like the backstab+turnbase abuse, but if you want to accoplish the challenge without being OP, a physically weak technician is pretty much filling that in. But again you need to make use of technology, you cant expect to be as powerful as a melee combatant just because you are holding a high tech weapon! you need to fullfil your inferiority by tactics and tech products.

    But yes an half-orc bandit with high dex and firearms is inferior to a melee one, which is wrong in my opinion too. I think problem is not Firearm, but rather Melee being too good with STR bonus.
     
  10. Arkain

    Arkain New Member

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    Well, a gunslinger could always put points into prowling though and be amazed at how enemies don't seem to care being shot from apparently nowhere until they meet their end. Even more fun with master training, where you can "disappear" instantly... into your own shadow or something. That's somewhat broken though and might be considered an oversight.

    I agree that firearms aren't exactly balanced though and one might want to make use of other technological gadgets. However depending on the firearm you got (and the point of time you got it, of course - if you get to use your ├╝berweapon just before the final boss that's somewhat depressing and pointless) you can dish out some punishment from the very beginning. Firearms are weak in that they don't come with an attribute that boosts their damage, however some of them have a good range and/or speed and deal a good amount of damage, which yields you a somewhat satisfying damage output when melee fighters are still struggling with raising dex, str and their skills at the same time. Thus you should always consider that it's kind of easy to pick up a 10-30 dmg fire arm (I think the Long Range Pistol should be available pretty early from a merchant if you're patient), but for a melee fighter it can be hard to reach that kind of constant damage early in the game if all you have is a Balanced Sword (which is of course awesome though and can be upgraded even further). Then again there's the Pyrotechnic Axe for melee fighters...

    Of course my memory is a bit blurry and it might all be wrong, but I feel like playing through with a gunslinger again at any rate.
     
  11. Viktor_Berg

    Viktor_Berg New Member

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    [​IMG]

    You forget that with Master Prowling, any skill benefits just as much as Firearms. Which is not to say that Firearms doesn't get boosted to acceptable levels using sneak attacks.

    Ever since I discovered Krupp's Gun Fix, I've been using it. I like the rebalances it does.
     
  12. Arkain

    Arkain New Member

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    Yes, every combat skill benefits from it, but I still find that the benefits ranged combat gets are even more noteworthy as the chance to be noticed lessens the greater the distance between you and the potential target is. So while, depending on equipment and the enemy, you may be noticed as a melee fighter trying to sneak up towards an enemy's back (which is of course very clever, seeing how awesome backstab gets at high levels of backstab and prowling) the ranged combatant stays relatively safe, as the enemy won't even flinch as another projectile hits his eye. Naturally though that may be considered inferior to an extra 100 backstab damage.
     
  13. telesien13

    telesien13 New Member

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    Have you ever seen D&D rule book for high level characters? Powerful non-mages are forced to have superhuman powers just to keep up with them. I don't know how this is in Arcanum, but making thieves almost magical beings is quite normal :)
     
  14. Hawkthorne

    Hawkthorne New Member

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    The Long-Range Pistol is made from a Looking-Glass Rifle and a part you can buy from gun shops. So, that requires finding or making a Looking-Glass Rifle.

    If you go the Gunsmithy route, that's a fairly large investment of character points. The LGR is the fifth weapon in that discipline. The Intelligence requirement might be an issue as well. And you'll probably have to buy at least one technical manual as well in order to have enough expertise to make the Long-Range Pistol.

    At that point, you might be better off just using the Looking-Glass Rifle since it has better stats.

    The good news for gunsmiths is that there are all sorts of guns you can make out of the LGR and the Repeater Rifle (the one right before it in that discipline). So, you can have some fun figuring out which ones you like.

    The bad news for gunsmiths is that, unless you're willing to steal from NPCs once you get to Tarant, you're probably going to have a hard time finding or making anything better than a Fine Revolver for a long time unless you keep your eyes on the prize and focus on tech skills.
     
  15. Muro

    Muro Well-Known Member

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    That depends.

    [​IMG]

    Th Long Range Pistol deals damage more effectively than the Looking Glass Rifle. Than again, it does so less effectively than the Hand Cannon. The HC is the best option for close combat from those three while the Long Range Pistol may a good option for attacking enemies from long distances if the player wants something stronger than the LGR and is skilled enough to not need the LGR's accuracy bonus.

    Is it that strange that a gunsmith has to invest in gunsmithy?
     
  16. Krycek

    Krycek New Member

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    The strange thing is that he doesn't have to. Every single item of that discipline can be found in the game. Most of them multiple times.

    The Hand Crafted Flintlock might be an exception to that rule, but one most people can live without.
     
  17. Muro

    Muro Well-Known Member

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but all I recall in vanilla is:

    one Looking Glass Rifle (William Thorndop)
    two Hand Cannons (Sammie White, Pollock)
    two Elephant Guns (Poacher Leader, Franklin Payne)
    That's because players skilled in Firearms but with no skill in Gunsmithy deserve some fun too.

    The Living One is much more flexible if he has the skill to create his own guns, though.
     
  18. Hawkthorne

    Hawkthorne New Member

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    You can find at least one Repeater Rifle if you're willing to wait until fairly late in the game.

    I guess I didn't make my point about Gunsmithy very well last night. My most recent gunsmith made a lot of different neat weapons. But it took me longer than I should have to finally make everything I wanted to because I did things like investing points in Charisma and Persuasion so I could get followers who could make useful things for me.

    By the time I was able to make the last thing on my checklist, I had nothing left to do but the end game and I realized that I probably wouldn't use it much.

    ... which is an awfully long winded way of saying that if you want a Long-Range Pistol by the time you start looking for quests to do in Tarant, you need to spend your character points carefully. If you spread points around into other stuff you want for your character, it might be a while.

    I've played several games where my plans kind of backfired on me and I wasn't able to make a Looking-Glass Rifle until after I came back from the Isle of Despair. That's a long time to have to fake it with a Fine Revolver, or whatever your best weapon is.
     
  19. Muro

    Muro Well-Known Member

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    I don't seem to recall it. Could you remind me of its location?
     
  20. Hawkthorne

    Hawkthorne New Member

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    The easiest one to find is in Caladon.

    If you go to the Sobbing Onion after Virgil leaves you and fight the guys in the basement (or whatever you want to call their underground lair), one of them uses a Repeater Rifle.
     
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