Is Armor Worth It? Interesting Numbers

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

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BMJedi
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Is Armor Worth It? Interesting Numbers

Postby BMJedi » May 28 2018, 21:55

So, I was really curious about game behavior I've been observing in MM 6, 7, and 8 about enemy hit rate versus armor class. So, I looked up the formula.

It's (Monster Level * 2 + 5) divided by (Monster Level * 2 + 10 + Player Armor Class)

That alone didn't tell me much. What exactly does, for example, AC 25 do for you, vs. AC 50, or AC 100? And, is it worth it to give up dual wielding or attack bonuses in favor of armor class?

I started plugging in a lot of numbers to the formula. Monster level 10 vs. AC 25. Monster level 25 vs. AC 50. Monster level 50 vs. AC 100. And also lower level monsters vs. very high AC.

I discovered something very, very interesting about the statistical curve I got.

No matter the monster level or the AC, the monster's base chance to hit before taking into account any armor was 95 to 98 percent. AC 50 started approaching a mathematical limit of 75% vs. just about any monster level. AC 100 started approaching a mathematical limit of 50% vs. just about any monster level.

Conclusions? It looks like no matter how much AC you put together, the highest level monsters are *always* going to have a 50/50 chance to hit you, vs. a 3/4 chance if you wear light armor, and close to 100% if you wear no armor at all.

So, considering that armor slows you down and reduces your attack rate, is it worth it to ever wear heavy armor or use shields? Higher dps seems better, because if you kill them faster they will stop swinging sooner.

Does Might and Magic basically follow the "Armor is Useless" trope, then?
Last edited by BMJedi on May 28 2018, 22:06, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Armor Worth It? Interesting Numbers

Postby BMJedi » May 28 2018, 21:58

Quick addendum - It occurred to me that the very complicated monster to hit formula works out to being reduceable to rolling a d4 to hit. Interesting.
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Re: Is Armor Worth It? Interesting Numbers

Postby Bandobras Took » May 29 2018, 3:03

I think you're forgetting the big picture.

Plate and Chain both reduce damage from physical attacks. That's a pretty valid reason to use them, with the added AC making the wearer a bit more survivable in the long run.

I do agree, though, that it would be nice to see games where heavy armor was actually the key to not taking a lot of damage, period.
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Re: Is Armor Worth It? Interesting Numbers

Postby BMJedi » May 29 2018, 13:38

@Bandobras, are you sure about that? All the sources I can find say that armor provides no damage reduction at all, only a reduction in enemy chance to hit, and the damage I see in the game seems to bear that out. Where are you getting your information? Mine came from here:

https://grayface.github.io/mm/mechanics/

Notice that this is the same Grayface who made the famous patches for all three games.

Edit: Oh, wait, I was playing specifically MM6 at this time. I just remembered about MM7 and MM8 changes - you must be referring to that. In MM6, though, I don't think there's any damage reduction from heavy armor.
Last edited by BMJedi on May 29 2018, 13:46, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Armor Worth It? Interesting Numbers

Postby Bandobras Took » May 29 2018, 19:00

Yes, but MM6 has many, many issues regarding class and skill balance anyway. :)

MM7 & MM8 are indeed what I was referring to, with the GM levels.
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Re: Is Armor Worth It? Interesting Numbers

Postby Xfing » Jul 17 2018, 13:38

100 isn't a very impressive number to get. What about 200? Will it still be just a flat 50% chance to be hit? You can hit 200 on all classes except maybe Wizards/Liches because the Staff of Elements has a significant AC penalty, but otherwise you can really stack up a high AC with enchanted apparel such as belts, cloaks, rings etc.


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