Monster behaviour and Party Positioning

The role-playing games (I-X) that started it all and the various spin-offs (including Dark Messiah).

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Macros the Black
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Monster behaviour and Party Positioning

Postby Macros the Black » Apr 25 2015, 3:29

I just now realised something new when it comes to monster behaviour.

I was in the Naga Vault in MM8, and I was walking down a corridor and came up on a T-section. At this point, a bunch of red dots showed up on my minimap in a room down the right hallway. I engaged them, and noticed that literally all of them were attacking my Necromancer. This is noteworthy for two reasons: 1) ALL of them were attacking him, 2) Naga's have females as preferred target, and he's a male.

I realised that this happened because he's in the rightmost spot in my party. Since they were down a hallway to the right, he was the only person they could see when they were triggered and so they all chose to target him.

So enemies choose a target as soon as they see you, and they then continue to attack only that target while you are in combat with them, AND they don't always see your entire party at the same time (your party members each occupy a seperate place within the game world).


This means that the best way to position your party members is to have the squishy targets on the second and third slots and the ones you want to have take the hits on the first and fourth. Then if you're peaking around corners, they will choose to attack the one character they see first. Having enemies attack the target you want them to attack seems really useful! :creative:
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Postby Ed Robinson » Apr 25 2015, 9:29

Do you think this applies to VI and VII as well? I'm pretty well along in replaying VI and it seems the focus of attention is my priest and mage. Third and fourth slots.

By the way, I wasn't aware that you could change positions...

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the beavers1
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Postby the beavers1 » Apr 25 2015, 9:37

Ed Robinson wrote:Do you think this applies to VI and VII as well? I'm pretty well along in replaying VI and it seems the focus of attention is my priest and mage. Third and fourth slots.

By the way, I wasn't aware that you could change positions...


Yeah you can, although I don't remember how exactly. Also weak characters such as cleric and sorcerer are generally targeted as primary targets by most monsters. At least in mm6 and mm7, although I assume mm8 has it as well. I am a bit curious as to how the hit box works for the characters.
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Ser Ironfist
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Postby Ser Ironfist » Apr 25 2015, 21:07

I remember I activated this by accident a couple of times. It was either crtl or alt.
I always thought this was nothing but annoying, but thinking about this does actually make it a useful little feature.

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Macros the Black
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Postby Macros the Black » Apr 26 2015, 21:22

Ed Robinson wrote:Do you think this applies to VI and VII as well? I'm pretty well along in replaying VI and it seems the focus of attention is my priest and mage. Third and fourth slots.

It probably does work for VII at least, it's not likely they messed with the game mechanics between VII and VIII. I haven't done any testing on this yet, just something I noticed.

By the way, I wasn't aware that you could change positions...

I'm sure you can, as I remember doing it before, but I've forgotten how it's done. In 8 you can just dismiss all your friends and rehire them in whatever order you want, although this leaves your main character on the left. In 6 and 7 you'd have to keep positioning in mind when creating your party.

But yes, I remember switching characters on the fly. I just can't remember how it's done.


Edit: I just spent a lot of time trying all kinds of key combinations to switch characters and can't find how to do it. Hopefully someone who knows how to do it can chime in.



EDIT 2: It seems that perhaps the Naga in that particular room are scripted to attack males, and it had nothing to do with my party positioning.. I tried again with a party that had 2 males in it, and this time both of them got attacked but not the females, while all the other Naga in any other place will only attack females. It's in a room with a button that has a deadly trap that damages all party members but lowers a chest from the ceiling in another room. So it would make some sense if these Naga were specifically scripted to attack males, so that the trap has more chance of killing everyone if all party members are somewhat injured.


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