To-hit chance rebalance?

Now, I understand that things like low melee skill and torso encumbrance is supposed to hinder melee combat.
But is it really supposed to make you utterly helpless? If your torso encumbrance is 1 and you’re just starting off (ie, have 0 melee skill), then you will basically never be able to hit anything, especially smaller enemies such as zombie/skeletal dogs, racoons, krecks, manhacks and such. I mean it, you can swing at these guys over 100 times and not even one single attempt will actually connect. All because you have 1 torso encumberance at low levels. I don’t know about you, but I find it extremely difficult to imagine how its possible even for the most completely inept fighter to be THIS pathetically helpless at stabbing/bashing something that’s right god damn in front of them. Yes, even if they are wearing a backpack and a sweater. Even the most uncoordinated cerebral palsy parkinsons train wreck of a human being should be able to hit a zombie dog biting at their throat at least 1 out of every 10 tries. But here the survivor is, a perfectly competent human being, completely unable to land even one single hit on a kreck or a zombie dog as if they’re an Agent from the god damn Matrix movies. All because they’re wearing a backpack. This really needs to be changed.

First off, the to-hit penalty for creatures that are smaller than the player character needs to be drastically reduced. An especially dedicated (read as: desperate) hunter could, if needed, just wrestle a racoon to death - instead of just untiringly picking up a heavy stick and throwing it at them over and over and over for 1 damage.
Second, make to-hit chances scale multiplicatively rather than additively, ie, a poor melee weapon incurs a 0.6x chance to hit, 2 torso encumbrance incurs a 0.75x hit chance, while a good melee weapon like a combat knife does 1.35x chance to hit along with introducing a “minimum hit chance” based on the creature’s dodge skill compared to the player’s melee skill, so that instances of “zombies with the dodging power of mosquitoes” can at least mostly be avoided. Minimum hit chance should really never go below 10%.

Side note 1: And I know things like manhacks are supposed to be difficult to hit too, they’re fast, flying pieces of metal with razorblades spinning around. But consider things like baseball players. People that can reliably hit fist-sized balls racing towards them at 80 miles per hour almost every single time. How much “melee skill” does a baseball player have? A whopping…2. According to the starting professions. So, shouldn’t something like a melee skill of two and a decently accurate melee weapon (ie, a baseball bat…) be enough to reliably hit something like a manhack?

Side note 2: Also I figure the devs should considerably reduce the effect Dexterity has on to-hit chance. Especially negative to-hit chance. Getting low dexterity from pain/shakes is crippling for melee builds. And look. I get shakes too. I’m not exactly the most perfectly coordinated person either. But I am very confident that my hand-eye coordination would at least be competent enough to stab a zombie shambling towards me enough times that I’m not missing it so frequently that I might as well just be staying perfectly still and doing nothing for all its worth.

I think that’s because subtraction sucks here. Power operator should be used instead so it would mean at lower encumbrance you get nearly no penalty but as the number grows the penalty grows stupendously high. Now the problem is to find the exact numbers.
Penalty: Y*(encumbrance ^ X), Y<=1, X>1

  1. Here’s the big problem with encumbrance… it gives you level penalties. Eventual plan is to switch it over from a level penalty to just a flat stacking one, meaning that ENC has a much less effect on lower levels (and a slightly greater one on extremely high levels).

  2. Unless something changed recently, like 3 melee skill and a good +to hit weapon could hit a manhack fairly reliably in my last testing. It wasn’t necessarily a guaranteed chance, but it was at least enough to get the occasional hit in (and since they don’t exactly have much health that was all you needed).

  3. Have you ever tried to hit a raccoon or squirrel with something short of a gun? It’s actually surprisingly difficult. Even something like a dog can be quite difficult to hit at times.

  4. Reasons and numbers. You’re demanding several things all be changed at once with nary a number in sight. Have you considered the effects of each one individually? Have you looked into calculating hit chances and providing some sample numbers for us to see? Just stating “this is bad, here’s a vague idea that I assert is somehow better than the current system because it’s vastly different” doesn’t necessarily mean anything in balancing and isn’t exactly the best way to get something changed. The current system could probably have a very valid balance with just a few small number tweaks here and there to help improve it, so unless you have a pretty valid reason to change something (and want to actually state that reason complete with some number examples) then there isn’t really any point in changing it.

I know it sounds harsh, and it’s generally not required for more suggestions, but when you get down to the actual mechanics unless you have some very compelling reasons to espouse a particular mechanics change you’re probably going to want to include some solid numerical examples in your post.