MM6 Disarm experiments and results

The role-playing games (I-X) that started it all and the various spin-offs (including Dark Messiah).
leftylink
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Joined: 17 Jan 2023

MM6 Disarm experiments and results

Unread postby leftylink » 19 Jan 2023, 00:35

I was playing Might and Magic VI and I found that traps were still blowing up even with master disarm level 7.
So I decided I will need to test what level of disarm is enough.
I don't consider "you don't need disarm trap; just use telekinesis" to be a valid answer because telekinesis incurs recovery time, costs spell points, and doesn't help you understand how the game works.

Well in MapStats.txt in icons.lod they tell us two numbers: lock level and trap level.
First, let's see whether lock level or trap level is important.
Do this by testing the skill level needed to succeed 50 consecutive attempts between Sweet Water (lock 8 trap 9) and Dragonsand (lock 8 trap 10).

Sweet Water:

master 11
expert 14
novice 21

Dragonsand:

master 11
expert 14
novice 21

Okay, since the skill levels are equal between them, it's lock level that tells you how hard it is to disarm.
Trap level determines how much damage you take when the trap goes off, not how hard it is to disarm.

Let's get a representative for each of the lock levels, then.

0 New Sorpigal
1 Abandoned Temple
2 Castle Ironfist
3 Mire of the Damned
4 Frozen Highlands
5 Eel Infested Waters
6 Blackshire
7 Paradise Valley
8 Sweet Water
9 doesn't exist
10 The Hive

I'll test what level of skill is needed to succeed 50 consecutive attempts at opening each lock level.
If I fail even once within the 50 attempts I increase the skill level and try again.
NB: Expert level below 4 and master level below 7 were never tested, since they're unattainable legitimately; entries where this results in an uncertain minimum value are marked with an asterisk.

Code: Select all

Lock Novice  Expert Master
   0      1       -      -
   1      3       -      -
   2      6      *4      -
   3      8       6      -
   4     11       7      -
   5     13       9     *7
   6     16      11      8
   7     18      12      9
   8     21      14     11
   9      -       -      -
  10     26      17     13
The lock column in MapStats.txt has a "x5" in its header, which seems to match up with these numbers if we say the following:
Let disarm power be novice level × 2 or expert level × 3 or master level × 4.
To guarantee a successful disarm, disarm power must be strictly greater than lock level × 5 (equal still has a chance of failure).


Indeed this means the tooltip lies to us when it says expert is twice as effective and master is thrice as effective!
In fact, expert is only 1.5x as effective and master is only twice as effective.

How does a thievery item affect the required level?
Same sort of experiment here: I equipped a thievery item and checked the minimum skill needed to succeed 50 consecutive attempts.

Code: Select all

Lock Novice  Expert Master
   0      1       -      -
   1      2       -      -
   2      3       -      -
   3      4       -      -
   4      6      *4      -
   5      7       5      -
   6      8       6      -
   7      9       6      -
   8     11       7      -
   9      -       -      -
  10     13       9     *7
This seems simple enough to understand.
A thievery item acts as if your skill level is doubled at your current tier of expertise/mastery.

Now we see that if we have a thievery item, master disarm 7 is enough to open all chests in the game.

What is the chance to succeed given a disarm power and a lock level?
Does it depend on the relative difference, or the absolute difference?
Let's see the minimum level needed to have any successes in 50 attempts.
If I see 50 failures in a row, I increase the level until I get a success.
Let's check the resulting delta of disarm power versus lock level × 5:

Code: Select all

Lock Novice Delta
   0      1     2
   1      1    -3
   2      1    -8
   3      4    -7
   4      6    -8
   5      9    -7
   6     11    -8
   7     14    -7
   8     16    -8
   9      -     -
  10     21    -8
Okay, so that tells us that the delta needed to get successes is -8 or higher, and this is an absolute, not relative based on the difficulty of the lock.
At -9 or below you're guaranteed to fail.

Let's check how many failures and successes you get based on delta.
I tested using novice levels 4, 5, 6, 7 against lock level 3 and novice levels 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 against lock level 4.
It would be awfully convenient if it was 10% at -8, plus 10% for every point of delta above -8, but we shouldn't jump to conclusions until we try it.

Code: Select all

Delta Success Fail Guess Observ
   -8       4   46   10%     8%
   -7      12   38   20%    24%
   -6      14   36   30%    28%
   -5      21   29   40%    42%
   -4      23   27   50%    46%
   -3      31   19   60%    62%
   -2      38   12   70%    76%
   -1      38   12   80%    76%
    0      46    4   90%    92%
I actually think 10% chance of success per delta above -9 is a pretty decent fit for that, so that's what I'm going to presume until I learn otherwise.

I don't know if any of this applies to any of the other games, and since I'm playing Might and Magic VII next I'll need to keep an eye out for any changes, but I'm hoping not too much changes between the games.

------------------------------------------------

The above info applies to to Might and Magic 6 only. 7 changed things up, as follows:
  • Lock levels range from 0 - 20, but your disarm power need only be greater than or equal to twice the lock level, instead of strictly greater than 5×.
  • Disarm power is 1 × novice level or 2 × expert level or 3 × master level (the tooltip is actually correct now!)
  • There does not appear to be any element of chance anymore. If your disarm power is sufficient, you will always succeed; if it is not, you will always fail. There is no in-between area where you will sometimes succeed and sometimes fail.
  • As a result, you need novice 40, expert 20, master 14, or grandmaster to open all chests in Might and Magic 7.
I have not tried anything with any other Might and Magic game so I wouldn't know about those.
Last edited by leftylink on 20 Jan 2023, 00:47, edited 1 time in total.

Tomsod
Scout
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Posts: 196
Joined: 31 Jul 2020

Re: MM6 Disarm experiments and results

Unread postby Tomsod » 19 Jan 2023, 14:18

I'll add that MM7 replaced the "of thievery" items with "of disarming", which give a numerical (1 to 25) bonus to the skill. However, this bonus is not multiplied at expert or master, unlike the skill's base value. Same with locksmith-type hirelings.

cthscr
Blood Fury
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Posts: 480
Joined: 12 Jan 2020

Re: MM6 Disarm experiments and results

Unread postby cthscr » 23 Jan 2023, 13:30

MM8 (and MM7 should be the same) still has "of thievery" spc bonus (0x23) applied to disarm chance. It doubles base skill level + skill from items WITHOUT skill mastery. After that skill mastery multiplicator (1-2-3-5) decreased by one is applied to base skill level - result is added to previous.


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