So armor and clothes and monsters

So I took the time to test several armors and clothes against monsters and well I can say that I think the whole way in which armor works is in serious need of a rework. Right now, it seems that your armor level is a flat reduction of the armor rating of the piece of clothing that blocked the attack to whatever damage was rolled by your attacker, this is not exactly the case, but judging by the time I spent testing, it works very similarly. This is not a very good way to calculate armor, and it can be easily illustrated.

A normal zombie does 2d3 of damage as a normal attack. This pair of die have the following distribution:
Assuming high coverage clothing, this means that an item with 2 protection (most shirts) will block nearly 1/3d of zombie attacks and reduce the max possible damage dealt to 4, an item with 4 (some shirts, most pants) will block 2/3ds and reduce max damage dealt to 2, and an item with 6+ (all sort of jackets, reinforced cargo pants) will completely negate the attack.

This is somewhat overkill for normal clothes and its without taking layering into account.

And its not only a problem with basic monsters.

King of beasts, the almighty Jabberwock, does 4d8+3 damage in its normal attack. This has the following distribution:
Well as you can see this results in items with more than 21 armor blocking more than 50% of attacks, and something like a normal survivor (30 protection) suit blocks everything but 3.05% of attacks, well in theory, Jabberwocks have a very nasty tendency to gouge your eyes out with their claws, but if you pair those with a survivor helmet and welding goggles you can negate almost every single attack the Jabberwock will launch you, sure survivor suits are late game gear, but Jabberwocks are the most dangerous monster ingame and are meant to be dangerous to late game players, not some sort of cakewalk. It will kill you from a headshots after a lot of turns (nothing seems to actually cover the eyes with 100% efficiency), but a survivor who made that late game gear can kill it in less than 10 turns with a katana or a rifle.

And well its not like that made sense from a realism point of view either, its obvious that if something like a Jabberwock or Zombie hulk punches you in the face you are going to become jell-o even if you are wearing state of the art powered armor not to mention custom made military gear (Its not that I advocate instakills it would not be so fun to instantly die to those; but neither should you be able to tank 20+ hits before dying from them). And how much protection does a leather jacket actually offers you? Sure its tough, but you can still get punched through it, and most leather jackets arent thick enough to to prevent bites from tearing muscles , not to mention that leather is not nearly uncommon enough warrant the protection it grants you. Should military gear make you completely immune to the most common enemy?

Now I don’t really know how we should come across fixing it, well I kinda know actually, armor should probably reduce damage based in percentages instead of flat damage reductions, as that would mean that you’ll take at least some damage from the majority of attacks but I wouldn’t know what equations should it use, as Its obvious that armors over certain thresholds should offer absolute protection from the majority of low damage attacks (namely plate armor and powered armor) and even then you should take damage while wearing those If you manage to get overwhelmed by zombies. Perhaps allow monsters to knock you of your feet and negate most armor benefits when you are downed (zombies knock you to the floor and rip your throat out like the animals they are supposed to be).

Another thing we could have is giving armor more levels of coverage (as an example: modern armor is much more protective to the back and front (were the ceramic plates are located. while leaving the sides more exposed. And we could simulate this by saying that 70% of a MBR vest offers good protection (were the ceramic plates are), 25% offers protection equivalent to just kevlar and 5% is exposed).

Soldiers were torn down by zombies too, or deadly robots with guns. I would also suggest here that armor getting damaged also leads to the values on the armor going down.

Given that items do have one armor (minimum value) and varying coverage, this really feels like monsters aren’t being scaled up with the many equipment reworks in the past.

After thinking about it, I came up with the following idea:
Armor values scaling with how damaged the armor/clothing is, as mentioned above - This is a good idea.

Beyond that, how about continuing to show the player the current “cut/torn/shredded” etc descriptors, but have an actual damage value on the items (the descriptors would come from where it’s at in the range.) In this case, armor (and gear) could be damaged more frequently by being hit, blocked with, used, fired, etc and thus requiring more maintenance. Also, if armor values are varied by repair status, you could have “reinforced” as just another repair descriptor - When something is repaired beyond its base durability, it’s reinforced. With sensible caps on reinforcement and armor values, reinforcement becomes more a matter of “the protection lasts longer” rather than “it protects massively better.”

Nerf bash protection? Would make sense, a shirt really wouldn’t make a mace to the chest hurt any less but it might provide a bit of protection from a bite etc. You could make most soft clothes have very poor bash armor but keep the cut protection. So your survivor with a trenchcoat, shirt etc would still take damage from punches but not as much from bites. hard boots like combat boots could remain untouched. Leather jackets and leggings could be slightly better but not as good as they are now and more rigid armors would have bash protection.

I will agree that there needs to be some overall time taken to look at our strongest monsters and our strongest armor and do a mass rebalance with some established limits (something that hasn’t been done before). We could then write these limits down in the game logic file, which would allow for future items to be much more balanced.

Hopefully this will be fixed soon.

Right now armor resists with it’s full protection value, except when a closing gate hits you or a npc, then the protection value divided by 3.

I hope they will reintroduce the 1/6 armor resist values - armors used their 1/6 protection values to resist damages - as they was in 0.8 or make some percentage related resist value for armors, like:


A turret with 18 max damage vs light survivor suit with 45 cut protection would be able to deal 0-5 damage. Even versus a power armor with 132 protection, it would be able to inflict 0-2 damage per hit.

But it was already in the game! In 0.8 a polo shirt had a 6 protection against damage, while a shredded one had only 3. It is changed? :frowning:

edit: i just tested it, it is still in the game. Steeltoed boots has 40 protection, a tattered one has only 10.

In the new experimental build the armor protection values are halved. I think it is still too good because a brute barely can hit through a light survivor suit, but halved armor values alse means greater chances to damage the armor. It is a good start.