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Author Topic: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?  (Read 2369 times)

Iriswaters

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Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« on: September 27, 2016, 09:17:51 am »

So, I am sure that by now anyone who isn't LNP bound has discovered that force transfer mechanics have made certain things more deadly.  Large creatures with high strength or those wielding heavy weapons can now do quite a bit more damage, even to those walking around like little adamantine tanks.  Danger rooms are dead, as are many of the dwarves you sent into them to train.  Overall, the changes are a great bit of realism and make the game more interesting.

However, it seems like in the process a change was made to make armor -more- effective at initial deflection, particularly of sharp pointy attacks.  This seems to have been done to balance out with the fact that force gets transferred through, but it ends up with an issue when crossbows enter the mix.  Because at this point, crossbows are completely incapable of piercing armor. 

I ran a test firing(not in arena, though I plan to do some more serious science soon), on an invasion force decked out in full iron plate, trapped in a hole with 30 marksdwarves with a functionally unlimited supply of iron bolts.  I fired ~2000 iron bolts at the poor trapped fools.  Of the 10 invaders, there were no deaths.  They all had severe wounds, repeatedly passed out from exhaustion, had their armor shredded, but none died.  And scrolling through the battle reports, I could not find a single shot not deflected by the armor, even as the armor fell apart.

Of note:  I have not tested with steel bolts.  This issue is also definitely not true of copper armor, which even bone bolts seem to slice through like butter.  And while it may be that softening up the enemy as opposed to just annihilating them is to be preferred for the way marksdwarves function, they don't even do that terribly well unless you manage to fire a truly absurd number of bolts to do so.

It feels to me like the answer to this is probably to up the velocity of bolts, though I worry this might make them over powered against unarmored targets.
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Fleeting Frames

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2016, 09:29:24 am »

First, just checking that you have done said test in v.42/v.40 as well? (i.e. that thos isn't the same old nerf, only now having to contend with armour?)

'cause with v.40, marksdwarves got massively nerfed against armoured targets in general and especially for some situations (i.e. see the thread in DFFM about 40 marksdwarves utterly failing to even kill a single sieger who got then all killed by 5 melee dwarves with no injuries), though siegers not wearing proper armour wasn't fixed till recently.

Iriswaters

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2016, 10:52:37 am »

Hmm.  I did not realize that the nerf had already happened.  Must have missed that.  Might be just that sieges now properly wear armor, mixed with me paying more attention to damage thanks to a mix of it being brought to my attention via the danger room changes and me caring more thanks to my stumbling upon the Fortress Defense mod, which makes combat and armoured opponents much more a concern.

Has anyone come up with a solution to this issue then that I missed?  Because having crossbows be utterly useless against armoured adversaries is annoying.
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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2016, 11:28:18 am »

I believe the generally-accepted "solution" is to use crossbows only against flying thieves/fragile AoE procedural beasts, and for armored flying targets force them to land to fight in melee.

That said, I would have expected how deadly crossbows are against armored opponents to have gone up, not down with deflections.

Iriswaters

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2016, 11:41:44 am »

Like I said, I may not have noticed the previous nerf, and only realized it occurred thanks to paying more attention now.  It's possible that with the new damage transfer mechanics they are more effective than they were just before, but they are still pretty shite against any sort of armor.
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Werdna

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2016, 01:49:19 pm »

I thought some studies found that the material of the bolts have to out-class the material of the armor in order to be effective.  So vs iron, I think you need steel bolts, maybe bronze.

Try the same experiment using steel bolts vs iron armor.
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Melting Sky

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2016, 04:40:11 pm »

Yeah, against armor projectiles have been nerfed for quite some time now. You are probably noticing it more now because in the most recent updates invaders actually bother to wear decent armor sometimes.

Crossbows still do significant damage to opponents who are not wearing armor. Generally they serve best as support for your melee dwarves. Start a battle with an opening volley of bolts to soften the enemies before sending your melee dwarves in to finish up. The days of old where a crossbow dwarf could one hit kill a 500 year old legendary dragon with a single bolt through the brain are no more.
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FantasticDorf

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2016, 01:38:00 pm »

Even if you dont have precisely strong bolts that can penetrate the enemy armor (adamantine blowdarts i profess are basically sniper bullets for cutting through any armour), you still have access to conventional traps & silver bolts, which with the weight should severely distort the now heavily causing internal injuries. Aim for the chest and heavily bruise some guts. Throwing and dropping heavy stuff now might be more useful than ever.

Literally pelt them with stones or bash them with your copper/artifact heavy metal crossbows into submission
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Werdna

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2016, 01:58:18 pm »

Completely different but same issue:

The climbing/jumping changes have also hurt the hell out our marksdwarf use.  It's a royal PITA to keep these bastards from crawling/leaping out of their pillboxes. 
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Pirate Santa

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2016, 05:38:41 pm »

Literally pelt them with stones or bash them with your copper/artifact heavy metal crossbows into submission
So you're saying XXpig tail sockXX murderholes are now deadly?
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FantasticDorf

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Re: Is it just me or did 43.05 nerf crossbows into the ground?
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2016, 06:05:21 pm »

Literally pelt them with stones or bash them with your copper/artifact heavy metal crossbows into submission
So you're saying XXpig tail sockXX murderholes are now deadly?

Heck throwing knives (all sorts, boning,skinning and combat knives) are REALLY good, most decent soldiers will be able to dodge it easy, but if you literally throw them at farmers it hits them in particular areas through civilian clothing to good heavy effect, crushing, embedding and seriously harming them. Pig tail socks are light, unless wielded with great force already they shouldn't do much. Hitting people with literal bars of metal would be a better application (akin to all these platinum statues and coffins you hear about notorious beastmen adventurers wielding to literally whack creatures out of existance with the biggest and heaviest tools they have)

Once as a goblin i started throwing knives to lure out neutral human farmers to fight by getting lucky shots, the big muscular blacksmith and the large cook both got serious injuries with just knife throwing, as i hit the cook in the leg chipping the bone and embedding and the blacksmith got a knife to the lungs causing instant turn 1 breathing difficulties. Later i threw a knife at a fleeing farmer atleast 14 tiles away from me but still in sight from my sensless barnyard slaughter and the impact of the copper knife crushed his ear sending it sailing off in a arc. I was literally picking up knives post and mid battle, equipping them with r and throwing them to aggro.
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