Combat

Combat

Weapon is inscribed with Silwen, cycling through Silwen similar to Fable 1 Spells. Activating and switching Silwen very common in combat. Augury and Shamanism both utilize Silwen. They can be applied to the body as tattoos for permanent but subtler passive effects.

Combat is a mix of Assassin’s Creed Unity, Assassin's Creed Origins, Fable 2, The Witcher 3 and For Honor

Lock on to nearest enemy, strikes can be directed from either direction, combined with dashing, charging/sprinting, etc. Strikes can be timed, there is a window immediately after a strike bounces off an opponent’s armour where striking again will have a higher chance of penetration. A Penetrating Strike will be delayed as you need to pull your weapon from their body, and impaling them will take even longer.

Combat multiplier, Combo Moves, Counter Attacks. When an enemy strikes and you successfully block, immediately following with a strike will have a higher chance of getting through their block or taking them unawares.

If an enemy is on low health and you counter attack you will perform a Killing Blow with a unique animation, if you chain another successful attack on another enemy at low health you can perform a series of killing blows and finish a fight quickly. The strategy is to whittle down each individual enemy until two or more are heavily wounded, indicated by limping, bleeding, etc, and then perform a chain of killing blows. If other wounded enemies have low morale they may route and flee, drop their weapons and beg for mercy, or call for help.

Cantrips, small spells that can be utilized by those quite far into the Augury or Shamanic processes. Nothing like fireballs, more manipulation of another person’s mind, telekinesis, magical taming of beasts, influencing Character's opinions of you, becoming stealthier, etc.

In addition to melee attacks and Cantrips, special melee abilities like from an MMO are available to weapon specializations/martial styles. These are often short duration effects, etc.

Target Strikes: While locked on to an opponent it should be possible to still shift the lock on to various body parts on the enemy in the same way that you can aim shots in Red Dead. Also, once the crosshairs are over the desired location you can select it to attack, and queue up three attacks at a time. So a good strategy is to queue up a strike to the legs, then the shoulder, then the chest. If both of the first to strikes hit they have a higher chance to stagger or daze the opponent, meaning the third strike has a high chance of being a killing blow.

Characters should feel weighty, solid, not floaty like Witcher 3. Warriors in armour plate should feel like a goddamn tank to go up against and to control.

Combat should not be level or gear dependent to a very large degree. Obviously some very high level enemies will be practically impossible to beat but it should still be possible. Combat depends upon player skill. If you die its because you did something wrong, not because the enemy had high quality gear or a higher level.

Weapon durability, repair, unarmed combat, stealth takedowns, grappling, choking, bone breaking, dismemberment, decapitation, incapacitating.

Stamina

Stamina is the most important mechanic in combat and determines it's entire pace / difficulty. You have a Stamina bar and a Vitality bar, and attacks from enemies will actually usually be damaging your stamina dipping into the health. Stamina can withstand attacks better than your Vitality and acts almost like the armour bar in other games, meaning the enemy must wittle down your Stamina before dealing actual damage to you. This represents your character's ability to effectively and accurately attack and defend. Your strikes will hit harder and with great precision the higher your Stamina, and it will regenerate over the course of a few seconds. However the lower it goes, the slower it will regenerate, and it is spent with many actions like power attacking, dashing, sprinting, etc. Well timed combo strikes and targeted strikes will be more efficient than random flailing and constant power attacks, and will drain less Stamina. Taking hits from the enemy will also damage your stamina, so taking a hit will encourage the player to back off for a second while it regenerates. Blocking negates the damage to your stamina.

Because plate armour is very difficult to penetrate, it is only possible to meaningfully damage most armour wearing enemies Vitality or for them to damage yours when Stamina is sufficiently depleted, you can then land blows on their weak points, or initiate a killing blow. However, there are other ways to attack Vitality directly, like Silwen applied to weapons which burn, freeze, electrocute, etc. These will pass directly through armour if you land a direct hit that isn't blocked or parried, and the character will take both physical damage which depletes their stamina, and non-physical damage which depletes their Vitality, bypassing the need to whittle down Stamina first.

Armour Rating essentially converts a percentage of physical Vitality damage to Stamina damage. So direct hits may damage Vitality a little bit, but will mainly damage Stamina, and the amount increases significantly the more your Stamina is depleted.

This system applies to characters wearing most metal armour types. But does not apply to those who aren't. If a character is unarmoured and takes a direct hit it will damage their Vitality. This is why most characters who can afford it will benefit greatly from armour, and most humanoids wear it. It reduces the amount of skill required by giving you a safety net should you fail to block or dash out of the way of a strike.

However, if you are highly skilled at timing your parries, dashes and blocks, you could choose to not wear armour, but any strike you fail to prevent will damage your Vitality regardless of Stamina level.

Wearing heavier and heavier armour will also increase the Stamina cost for the actions already listed. This can be negated to a degree depending on strength level.

In addition, a low Vitality will decrease your maximum Stamina level. There are linked to one another in a realistic way, so that a character on the verge of death can't be jumping around, sprinting and dashing all over the place.

The Stamina / Vitality system should encourage periods of chaining attacks followed by periods of recovery. Going into to hack down an enemies Stamina until you damage their Vitality, thereby damaging their max Stamina as well. Then backing off to regain your own Stamina before attacking again. If you cannot successfully chain enough strikes through the use of Combo Strikes or Targeted Strikes, the challenge will be the same after the recovery period, as you will not have damaged their max Stamina. This encourages skillful play. Chaining attacks increases likelihood of breaking through their Stamina bar and damaging their Vitality directly. Parrying, Blocking or Dashing out of the way of an enemies attack and then landing a few blows of your own is beneficial because they will have wasted some Stamina striking at you, again, reducing the amount of successful blows you need to land in order to damage their Vitality.

They of course take advantage of this recovery period to regain their own Stamina, however because of the damage done to their Vitality, it will take less hits to their Stamina to break through their defenses during your next series of strikes. So the first series of blows might require three successful direct hits to their Stamina in a row, followed by one hit to their Vitality, at which point you will likely be low on Stamina yourself, increasing risk of damage, and hampering your ability to strike. So you back off briefly to recover. The next series of strikes might now only require two direct hits to Stamina, because their maximum Stam has been reduced from the Vit damage. You continue whittling down their Vitality in this way until they can barely raise their sword arm and are bleeding out due to the various wounds you have inflicted, at which point it may only require a single direct hit to break through both their entire stamina bar and the last of their Vitality.

Stamina is also utilized by dashing, sprinting, climbing, and jumping. When climbing the Stamina bar will slowly deplete, and will be depleted further if you tap sprint to dash up or hold it to climb faster.

Wounds

Wounds occur according to how much Vitality damage a character takes with a single strike. Minor Wounds are sustained with most direct hits to Vitality, meaning the character is either unarmoured and taken a direct hit, or an armoured character has had their Stamina depleted and taken a direct hit. Minor Wounds will bleed for a short amount of time, depleting Vitality slowly, they will never take a character's Vitality down to 0. Moderate Wounds bleed longer but will stop with time, and will not take Vitality down to 0 either. Major Wounds will bleed all the way down to 0 if not healed or bandaged. Severe Wounds are the same but bleed at an accelerated rate.

Each level of wound can be bandaged which will essentially reduce them down to the previous level, or heal them completely in the case of Minor Wounds. Moderate become Minor, Major become Moderate, and Severe become Major. This means that Minor and Moderate Wounds are the only two that can be left unattended without killing you. Major wounds must be bandaged to turn them into Moderate wounds, which means they will not kill you either if taken care of. But Severe Wounds which have been bandaged will still be Major wounds, meaning that even if bandaged they will still bleed you down to 0 with time. The only way to completely heal Severe Wounds is by using up a charge of Feyfire, and they must be bandaged first as Severe Wound cannot be healed but Major ones can.

Looting

Looting is determined by a need, greed or never system like Everquest. Where you can select which items to always pick up or always ignore, and even whether to always immediately put them on your pack animal when in the vicinity. So that if you spend enough time killing a particular mob type you will have assigned enough of the items that you never have to click on bodies to loot ever again. Bodies will glow when they have unique, rare or useful items. But if you set these to ignore they will not. (This setting can also be turned off) So it can be a mix of automatic looting and manual looting if you are searching for a particular thing, or think that mob has something you want.

Difficulty, Progression & Scaling

No Difficulty scale / slider. The game is as hard as it is. Difficulty settings effect other things like scarcity of food, potions, etc.

The player should almost always be capable of skilling their way through combat. Even it takes fucking forever, and it would be much easier to gear up or learn some new skills, it should technically be possible to kill the most powerful enemies in the game with a level 1 character if they can utilize their personal skill as a player to great enough effect.

Notes

Each option available in combat should have an adequate reward to risk ratio. Performing an action to gain some benefit should also put you at a similar amount of risk.

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