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IR Revised V1.3.200 (2020 August 22nd)


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12 minutes ago, subtledoctor said:

To be clear: that component was making all items already usable by fighter/thieves, usable by thieves.  Or something like that.  My fix limited it to weapons only.

But my understanding is, the game considers something to be a valid backstabbing weapon if it is usable by thieves.  So the only way to allow backstabbing with, say, battle axes, is to make battle axes usable by thieves.  Which means there is no getting around the consequence of making more weapons usable by thieves, if you want to make more weapons usable for backstabs.  Meaning, this isn't a bug.

That's my understanding, anyway.  Anyone can please feel free to correct me if I'm mistaken.

Yeah, I was writing up this edit to my reply before the website started going all "forum is not currently available" on me again:

The description of the subcomponents in the readme merely says the first option will enable variable backstab penalties for weapons usable by pure thieves, while the second component says it'll additionally enable backstabbing for some other types of non-thief weapons (not perfectly clear on which ones) but apply the listed penalties, while the third option will enable backstabbing for *all* weapons (including ranged ones) but apply the penalties to them.

But actually looking at what the component does, it seems all three subcomponents add penalties for all types of weapons that aren't the prime backstabbing weapons like daggers and short swords (e.g. long swords, katanas, scimitars, darts, and light crossbows get -1 backstab multiplier, while axes, bastard swords, maces, morning stars, staves, hammers, heavy xbows, short bows get -2, etc.). So, what do the second and third components do? Both make all types of melee weapons usable by single-class thieves. The description for this component doesn't state that it will do that. The third option also makes all types of ranged weapons usable by single-class thieves. It also doesn't say it's going to do that. The third option also makes all types of weapons (for the purpose of enabling ranged weapons) usable by all types of multiclass thieves. I'm not sure why it does this, since it seems to serve no function.

Finally, and this is where and why the problem is occurring, the second and third components also enable a "can backstab" value...that only applies to ToBEx games. It turns out, ToBEx games *need* a weapon to be usable by thieves in order for the "enable backstabbing on this weapon" thing to work. That's why these components are enabling these weapons for single-class thieves. The EEs didn't fully copy this behavior, but seemingly what it does do is that any weapon usable by a single-class thief that is not ranged can be used for backstabbing. This explains why Subtledoctor disabled the third option for EE games, since it doesn't serve any benefit (and just creates more problems) for EE games.

I guess I will write a note in the readme that explains the problematic way it accomplishes enabling more weapons for backstabbing. In other words, it is not a bug and is functioning as design, it's just that the design kind of sucks (not because of anyone's fault of course, just because that's how it has to work).

Edited by Bartimaeus
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1 hour ago, Bartimaeus said:

any weapon usable by a single-class thief that is not ranged can be used for backstabbing

Right.  This is why, for instance, a mage/thief cannot backstab with the Staff of the Magi, even though you can normally backstab with a quarterstaff.  That particular quarterstaff is not usable by single-class thieves, so no backstabbing with it.  It is completely hard-coded AFAIK.

Which means, in order to backstab with a mace, you need to allow single-class thieves use maces.  Of course single-class thieves still cannot be proficient with maces, so they will have a 4-point penalty to attack rolls, or whatever it is.  And particular weapons like Carsomyr will still not be usable, so if you like to do UAI->Carsomyr, this doesn't rob UAI of all its value.

It seems fine to me, although it's clunky.  But there is something to be said for full disclosure - some players have less tolerance for that kind of broad changes.

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2 hours ago, Bartimaeus said:

The description of the subcomponents in the readme merely says the first option will enable variable backstab penalties for weapons usable by pure thieves, while the second component says it'll additionally enable backstabbing for some other types of non-thief weapons (not perfectly clear on which ones) but apply the listed penalties, while the third option will enable backstabbing for *all* weapons (including ranged ones) but apply the penalties to them.

Apologies, the description could be clearer.

In the vanilla game, weapons are either capable of backstabbing or incapable of backstabbing.  All weapons capable of backstabbing do so using the same multiplier.  The engine decides which weapons are capable of backstabbing by checking if they are usable by single-class thieves.

The idea behind Revised Backstabbing is that this binary system doesn't make much sense.  Shouldn't daggers be better at backstabbing than quarterstaffs?

  • The 1st subcomponent applies backstabbing penalties for less-suitable weapons, but does not enable backstabbing with weapons that could not backstab previously.
  • The 2nd subcomponent applies backstabbing penalties for less-suitable weapons, and enables backstabbing with melee weapons that could not backstab previously.
  • The 3rd subcomponent applies backstabbing penalties for less-suitable weapons, and enables backstabbing with melee and ranged weapons that could not backstab previously.

The backstabbing penalties for ranged weapons don't appear to be listed in the table (that subcomponent was added much later), but they are as follows:

  • Darts, Light Crossbow: -1 Backstab Multiplier
  • Heavy Crossbow, Short Bow: -2 Backstab Multiplier
  • Sling, Long Bow, Composite Long Bow: -3 Backstab Multiplier
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Hmm. My interest in this component was to get backstabbing penalties depending on the weapon PLUS the ability to backstab with thief range weapons. My only option would be to use subcomponent 3 even though it's not there in IRR and I would have to suffer the other consequences.

What makes thief range weapons not usable for backstabs then? In vanilla that is.

Edited by NdranC
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It was just how the engine worked - it applied backstabs when attacking with melee weapons usable by single-class thiefs.  ToBex included the ability to change that behaviour.

I don't know if an equivalent feature was added to the EE games or might be added by EEex.

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1 hour ago, Mike1072 said:

It was just how the engine worked - it applied backstabs when attacking with melee weapons usable by single-class thiefs.  ToBex included the ability to change that behaviour.

I don't know if an equivalent feature was added to the EE games or might be added by EEex.

Wait, I'm confused. So are we not able to make ranged weapons backstab? Then why is the component adding backstab penalties to range weapons if we can't make them backstab?

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Because ToBex (which is included in IR) changes the engine to let us enable backstabs with ranged weapons.

However, ToBex works with the classic games only (BG2: ToB, BGT, EasyTutu_ToB) — not the EE games.

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@NdranC @Mike1072 From what I could tell, Mike is correct. The reason the option is disabled for EE games is because it doesn't work - the EEs don't have this functionality. The penalties are still being added because there's no downside to doing so, as the penalty doesn't do anything anyways. Sorry, no ranged backstabs for EE players.

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On EE, can't you use opcode 319 to disable weapons that you don't want thieves to use, but which can be used to backstab? I haven't checked, but I doubt the engine checks 319 when seeing if backstab is possible.

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21 minutes ago, DavidW said:

On EE, can't you use opcode 319 to disable weapons that you don't want thieves to use, but which can be used to backstab? I haven't checked, but I doubt the engine checks 319 when seeing if backstab is possible.

Probably, but it's also probably not a foolproof idea. By doing that, you're going to make it so that people who play with less restrictive weapon proficiency mods (or similar) won't be able to customize weapon usabilities as they expect, since such mods almost certainly do not take into account any presence of opcode 319. ...Although my experience of weapon proficiency mods is only for ToBEx games - maybe there is an EE mod that would detect such things, since some classes (shamans for short bows?) already have to use opcode 319? Don't know for sure, I guess.

Edited by Bartimaeus
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6 minutes ago, DavidW said:

Sensibly robust code on an EE install ought to be checking for 319... but I don't know if it actually does in extant mods.

Yeah, I'm not familiar with EE-only weapon proficiency mods, so I really just don't know for sure.

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The question is, what possible complications would result from sticking 319 effects into all those weapons; and what do you gain by doing so?  IR "More Weapons Usable for Backstabbing" has been around for at least five or six years, and this is the first time I've seen anyone complain that it allows thieves to use (but not be proficient in) maces and bastard swords etc.  I'm not convinced (yet?) that this is calling out to be improved.

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On 9/5/2020 at 1:33 PM, subtledoctor said:

The question is, what possible complications would result from sticking 319 effects into all those weapons; and what do you gain by doing so?  IR "More Weapons Usable for Backstabbing" has been around for at least five or six years, and this is the first time I've seen anyone complain that it allows thieves to use (but not be proficient in) maces and bastard swords etc.  I'm not convinced (yet?) that this is calling out to be improved.

Complain is a strong word for this. Mostly highlighting an inconsistency between the expected result based on the available online documentation and the actual results in game. I don't know how else to look for bugs on a piece of software.

Maybe it's just me, but I'm a stickler for video game design that has clear and consistent message for the player to learn from. If the player learns how something works early game, then they should be able to extrapolate behavior of similar features they haven't used first hand before. This would allow them to feel rewarded by making discoveries because the language the game used to communicate was predictable. Having seemingly random changes in rules with no explanation or in-game logic disturbs this balance and nurses a game environment where you don't know why the world works as it does. I would take vague tooltips/descriptions over ones that outright lie any day of the week. I'm looking at you vanilla Protection from Fire spell description.

Obviously a lot of this falls through the window when it comes to mods having constrains like engine limitations, modder's time, mod compatibility, etc. Yet I see no reason why not to strive toward this goal when possible. Regardless, at the end of the day, I find it's better to bring it up and either be dismissed or result on an updated readme, than to leave a potential bug unsquashed.

 

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4 hours ago, NdranC said:

Complain is a strong word for this.

Sorry, I didn't mean that in a negative way.  I very much appreciate your desire for systems like weapon usability/proficiency to be consistent.  The game teaches you that they generally match up with each other; and so they should. I spent a lot of time and effort to add a system in Faiths & Powers to modify weapons' item type in order for our kits to use opcode 180 to make sure their usability matches their available proficiencies.  Doing so also introduced possible sources of conflicts (definitely do not install IR's "Weapon Changes" after FnP!) but on balance I think it was worth it.

Here, the balance is slightly different; this mod is not introducing and modifying kits and so it would not be appropriate to control usability via kit effects.  The only reasonable solution would be to use opcode 319; but that only works on EE games, and itself could create compatibility issues.  It's just enough of a different case that I feel like it's better to sacrifice consistency in the usability/proficiency matching, in order to achieve the goal of backstabbing with more weapons.  (It's important for my personal game, because I allow rangers to backstab, and some of my cleric/thief kits can use weapons like maces and I want them to be able to backstab.)

But you should definitely make yourself heard, even if it doesn't count as a real "bug."  If enough people feel like you do, then it would be a reason to consider changing the mod.  Who knows, maybe there are a lot pf players who feel the way you do!  Better to hear from everyone who has an opinion.

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