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Luck: What it is and how it works

124

Comments

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,531
    Grond0 said:

    For save or else spells, however, luck has no effect. The Enhanced Song has the MR benefit against nearly all spells and in addition total immunity to fear, stun and confusion - which are common disablers that in my experience are more likely to get a party into trouble than direct damage spells.

    Hmm, I though basic bard song had save bonuses as well. But a look at the files shows not. So that's a bit in favor of it not being absurd. Though there is still the question of opportunity cost, given that the Enhanced Song requires you to spend an HLA.

    Ah, I'll probably never play with umodded bard songs anyway, so whatever.

    Grond0
  • rede9rede9 Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,756
    edited January 12
    What happens if a caster has a luck bonus and a target a luck malus? Is damage increased twice?

  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 2,137
    rede9 said:

    What happens if a caster has a luck bonus and a target a luck malus? Is damage increased twice?

    Luck malus doesn't influence physical damage received, luck bonus doesn't increase magic damage dealt.

    semiticgod
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,531
    rede9 said:

    What happens if a caster has a luck bonus and a target a luck malus? Is damage increased twice?

    Positive Luck (for you): bonus to weapon damage, reduced damage taken from spells

    Negative Luck (for them): reduced weapon damage, increased damage taken from spells.

    So both together add up to a uniform effect. (That's what Chant does.)

    semiticgodrede9lolien
  • rede9rede9 Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,756

    rede9 said:

    What happens if a caster has a luck bonus and a target a luck malus? Is damage increased twice?

    Positive Luck (for you): bonus to weapon damage, reduced damage taken from spells

    Negative Luck (for them): reduced weapon damage, increased damage taken from spells.

    So both together add up to a uniform effect. (That's what Chant does.)
    I see.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 1,703
    edited January 13
    rede9 said:

    rede9 said:

    rede9 said:

    Can a bard copy himself (simulacrum...) to stack song luck bonus? How many copies are summonable?

    I believe Bard Song doesn't stack.
    I'm quite sure Bard Song stacks in vanilla game. Maybe it stacks no more in EE because it is OP.
    https://forums.beamdog.com/discussion/comment/190513/#Comment_190513
    This user explains he summoned 5 bard clones in BG2 vanilla and 6 Enhanced Song stacked: +20 AC, +20 THAC0, +20 damages, +25 magic res, etc.
    Does it work in BG2ee?




    As is told is no more possible.
    about it being OP... is it more OP than an infinite loop of PI recharging the spells needed via spell trap and bombing enemy under TS, with RoV, AoP, and IA, dropping on the enemy infinite copies of the spell book by mage or sorc? The exploit of having 2 PI doing it at the same time has been nerfed, but using only one, or a PI and a simulacrum is still very possible.
    I can write of many other OP things that other classes, multi and duals can perform.

    All those, the bard one included, are completely optional, player's choice.

    About the bard one i can tell you that in original game i did much more, all the party was on a permanent +80 AC, +80 THAC0, +80 damages, +100 magic res using simulacrum, PI by the sim from quick slot scrolls and misleads from sim and PI, while a sorcerer was recharging constantly the helm spamming wishes with his PI. :)
    mine was a test, no fun in playing all the game like that, but potentially was possible to run the whole game from some point of chap2 like that.

    I really dislike the EE implementation of bards for some reasons, and to not be able to experiment exploits like that is the least of those. I don't see a single reason why having 2 bards in the party their songs should not stack. I see the reason why the improved song now does no more cover the whole area, hiding the bard and his clones behind a closed door and benefit was a lame thing and now is no more possible. but the area affected by the improved song now is way to small, is almost impossible to have all the party benefit of it in most of the situations, you have to choose if to have your mlee or your casters/ranged affected by the song. the way that the song is triggered in EE make also a nightmare to have him sing and attack, while a caster can still easily use cast and attack strategy.

    in the old times of original bard was often accused to be good at many things, but really good at nothing, and inferior to other alternatives like FT, FM, FMT. it was not so, even without using exploits like the one i told, that could make him the most powerful class. now it is, the only real advantage of bard is the fast progression, so better Dispel Magic and level dependent spells, and this advantage vanishes about half way BG2, if not before.

    as i play both original and EE now i don't play bards in EE any more and have almost always 1 of them in the party in original. cause i really love bards, for RP reasons and game mechanics. I will probably try the @subtledoctor bard mod in the future, but no more vanilla bards in EE for me, i suffer too much seeing how they have been nerfed.

    sorry for the wall of text, is only that... i love(d) bards so much.

    Grond0Proont
  • rede9rede9 Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,756
    edited January 14
    Does luck help to have good effect with PST Axe of the Jester?
    https://forums.beamdog.com/discussion/comment/911950/#Comment_911950

    Post edited by rede9 on
  • LoldrupLoldrup Member Posts: 244
    Alonso said:

    Bard Song (unkitted): +1 luck at level 1, +2 at level 15, +3 at level 20.

    Huh, I thought it gave immunity to fear. When did that change?
    Party wide luck +1 seems quite awesome! Party wide luck +3 seems quite OP...

  • rede9rede9 Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,756
    edited February 3
    What about IWD Tempus cleric's Chaos of Battle? Does it stack with chant?
    If so, I could create a biclass Tempus/mage to cast Chaos then a Spell trigger Doom+Chant+Great Malison.

  • FirecrowFirecrow Member Posts: 93
    edited March 30
    Alonso said:


    IWD2

    Apart from the effects listed for the other games, in IWD2 luck also affects critical hit and critical miss chances (so in our previous example our warrior does make a critical when he rolls 19). That's especially useful because (1) nothing is immune to critical hits in IWD2, and (2) hammers, halberds, spears, arrows, and axes deal triple damage rather than double damage on critical hits.
    Actually, many types of mobs are immune to critical damage in IWD2. At least on HoF mode. Slayers-knights, almost all undeads, golems, elementals, oozes, Iyachtu Xvim Avatar, Twins.
    Alonso said:


    Icewind Dale 2

    Luck spell: +1 luck.
    Tymora's Melody: +1 luck, +3 to saving throws, +2 to thief skills, Alchemy, and Knowledge (Arcana).
    Tymora's Loop (extremely rare random drop): +3 luck.
    Breaking the mirror in the Ice Temple: -20 luck.
    Chant: Unknown.
    Also on HoF mode you can get another powerful luckboosting item, "Young Ned's Knucky", it gives +2 to Luck, +2 to Saving Throws. It can be retrived with help of Finger of Death from Jemeliah in Deirdre Gallaway shop.

    Post edited by Firecrow on
    semiticgodProontStummvonBordwehr
  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 10,468
    @Firecrow: I've been playing IWD2 for a while now, but I only very, very recently noticed that certain critters were immune to critical hits. It wasn't a single month ago when I thought critical hit immunity didn't even exist! I only realized it was there when I was trying to deal damage to golems with high damage resistance and realized that I wasn't landing any of the criticals I needed to hurt them.

    I believe Tyrannar Brutai Mar is the only potential source of Tymora's Loop. I've only seen the item a single time in-game, and only by repeatedly save-scumming at the fight with Tyrannar Brutai Mar. It's kind of mythical, isn't it?

    I love Young Ned's Knucky. Destruction also has a chance of nailing Jemeliah, but it's very unreliable. A HoF guide on GameFAQs said that pickpocketing it was impossible, and noted that using Disintegrate on Jemeliah would turn the whole town hostile even if it worked.

    Theoretically, it may be possible to avoid turning the town hostile if you one-shot Jemeliah with a physical attack or maybe a pure damage spell, but I've never tried it because it's very luck-dependent. If it is possible, song stacking for +20 to damage and +20 to luck should let you get a guaranteed kill on Jemeliah with an arrow, provided you had an additional +7 to damage from someplace to deal 96+ damage total. But that requires using an exploit.

    StummvonBordwehrThacoBellFirecrow
  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 10,468
    @Firecrow: Your English is excellent!

    Looks like I'm on patch 2.01 (101615), whatever that means. But I'm playing with a very heavily modded game, with Tactics4IWD2, IWD2Tweaks, and Light of Selune installed, and I don't know all of the specifics behind each mod and what it does.

    By the way, welcome to the forums! I notice you only joined 3 hours ago. There's a special badge called the Combo Breaker Badge you can earn if you get 5 badges in a single day, and it's usually only possible for people who have just joined the forums, since the earlier badges are easier to come back. It's well past impossible for old-timers like me. Try and grab it!

    Firecrow
  • FirecrowFirecrow Member Posts: 93
    edited March 27
    Thanks.) Light of Selune quite interesting, but it has many bugs. Also it weaks many mobs, if you instal it after Tactics4IWD2. Don't know about if install Tactics after LoS. Maybe you has some lack of critical damage immune mobs becouse LoS. My first post about critical hits was for unmodded 2.01.

    Post edited by Firecrow on
    Grond0PaulGreystokeProont
  • rede9rede9 Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,756
    Does Luck work with wounds?

  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 10,468
    @rede9? You mean, the bleeding wound effect from IWD2? No, luck doesn't impact that at all; bleeding wounds deal a set amount of damage (though Tymora's Melody's save bonuses might help against the bleeding wound effects that offer a saving throw). Or do you mean something else?

  • rede9rede9 Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,756

    @rede9? You mean, the bleeding wound effect from IWD2? No, luck doesn't impact that at all; bleeding wounds deal a set amount of damage (though Tymora's Melody's save bonuses might help against the bleeding wound effects that offer a saving throw). Or do you mean something else?

    Sorry, I meant Wands. For example, should I use Wand of Magic Missiles with Alora?

  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 10,468
    @rede9: Luck only impacts incoming spell damage and outgoing physical damage. If Alora uses a Wand of Magic Missiles, it will deal just as much damage as if anyone else used it. Alora will, however, take less damage from enemy Magic Missile spells. Likewise, she's a little bit safer from your party's own Fireballs because of her luck.

    StummvonBordwehr
  • CashewCashew Member Posts: 12
    i've been playing these games since highschool, and I only just now understand what luck does. I might use the related spells and abilities more often now.

    Alonsogorgonzola
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,531
    I get that +1 damage is better than +1 Luck, for damage. When I talk about Luck being valuable it's mostly this:
    SomeSort said:

    Luck does retain two trump cards, however. First, it's the only effect that reduces incoming spell damage

    BG2 being what it is, this is hugely valuable there.

    Consider a thief in IWDEE. You can get your luck up to +2 or +3 I think. So you get a saving throw to avoid any damage, another save for half damage if the first save fails, and the total amount if damage on which the calculation is based is already cut in half. A thief can pretty much ignore magical attacks by an invoker-type like Malavon, and just walk up and poke him with a dagger.

    And since I brought IWD Evasion over to BG2EE, I can do the same thing to Tolgerias. :wink:

  • lroumenlroumen Member Posts: 1,597


    And since I brought IWD Evasion over to BG2EE, I can do the same thing to Tolgerias. :wink:

    wait, which one of your mods does that?

  • rede9rede9 Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,756
    edited April 23
    rede9 said:

    What about IWD Tempus cleric's Chaos of Battle? Does it stack with chant?
    If so, I could create a biclass Tempus/mage to cast Chaos then a Spell trigger Doom+Chant+Great Malison.

    Tempus kit has been added to BGee and Branwen has been converted.
    Does Chaos of battle stack with Chant to buff allies and debuff enemies luck?

    Proont
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,531
    lroumen said:


    And since I brought IWD Evasion over to BG2EE, I can do the same thing to Tolgerias. :wink:

    wait, which one of your mods does that?
    Might & Guile, as part of the larger feat system. I've also just proposed a new component for IWDification to bring Evasion over in the vanilla IWD fashion.

    StummvonBordwehrlroumenPaulGreystokeProont
  • SomeSortSomeSort Member Posts: 859

    I get that +1 damage is better than +1 Luck, for damage. When I talk about Luck being valuable it's mostly this:

    SomeSort said:

    Luck does retain two trump cards, however. First, it's the only effect that reduces incoming spell damage

    BG2 being what it is, this is hugely valuable there.

    Consider a thief in IWDEE. You can get your luck up to +2 or +3 I think. So you get a saving throw to avoid any damage, another save for half damage if the first save fails, and the total amount if damage on which the calculation is based is already cut in half. A thief can pretty much ignore magical attacks by an invoker-type like Malavon, and just walk up and poke him with a dagger.

    And since I brought IWD Evasion over to BG2EE, I can do the same thing to Tolgerias. :wink:
    I would tend to think that things like Evasion and Shorty Saves would make luck less, rather than more, valuable, though. At least for me, I feel physical damage is a much greater threat than magical damage in BG2, (especially with attendant effects like INT- and level-drain), and that the most dangerous spells and spell-like effects are disproportionately unlikely to deal any damage at all, (horror, hold, chaos, finger of death, etc.)

    On a shorty with solid saves, the difference between +2 luck and +3 luck is maybe they take 3 fewer damage per fireball, on average. (For a character who is guaranteed to fail every save, it's a reduction of 5 damage). If that shorty has Evasion, the average reduction is probably more on the order of 0.5-1 points of damage per fireball. Given the relative infrequency of fireballs in the game, this hardly seems "wildly OP".

    semiticgod
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,531
    edited April 25
    SomeSort said:

    I would tend to think that things like Evasion and Shorty Saves would make luck less, rather than more, valuable, though.

    I was not making a claim on the comparative value of one vs. another there; I was pointing out that thieves are uniquely able to "layer on" the combined effects. Yeah good saves might be better than good Luck... but good saves + good Luck + Evasion is like walking around with a permanent fireproof (and cold-proof, and shock-proof, etc.) blanket.
    SomeSort said:

    the difference between +2 luck and +3 luck ... hardly seems "wildly OP".

    No one said the difference between 2 Luck and 3 Luck is wildly OP. I said +3 Luck is OP compared to +0 Luck. At least, I was convinced of that by someone else, at some point in the past.

    +3 Luck with daggers or war hammers is like permanent Kai, with max damage and +3 to attack rolls. Even with weapons that do 1d6 damage, the average roll will be 5.5, which is damn near max damage.

    The average damage from a 10th level Fireball will be 15 on a failed save, or 7 on a successful save. Compared to 35/17. For a maxed-out ADHW, it's 42/21 vs. 90/45.

    Basically it's like ~60% resistance against every elemental damage type, plus to-hit bonuses, plus max damage on hit.

    Point being, the effect is outsize relative to its magnitude. What other application of a single +3 gives you all that?? It's just something that should be taken into account when deciding "hmm, should I use opcode 22 in this item?" A Luck bonus is comparatively overpowered, relative to an equivalent thac0 bonus or damage bonus or save bonus or AC bonus, etc.

    (The source of my education here is my mod that grants a Luck bonus for high CHA scores. People explained thus stuff to me in order to make me understand that +3 is quite powerful, probably too powerful for a permanent stat-based effect that can be combined with other sources.)

    Post edited by subtledoctor on
    ThacoBellStummvonBordwehrProont
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,531
    lroumen said:


    And since I brought IWD Evasion over to BG2EE, I can do the same thing to Tolgerias. :wink:

    wait, which one of your mods does that?
    EDIT - here you go.

  • lroumenlroumen Member Posts: 1,597
    Thanks, much appreciated.

  • ProbablyNotANumberProbablyNotANumber Member Posts: 12
    edited October 18
    @semiticgod Many thanks for all the information you gathered. It's not my main topic for posting but if you've got some time, I'd be curious to know the method you used to find all of that. Was it thorough, blind game testing of all variables affecting combat one after another ? Was it more directed, like maybe looking at AD&D 2 rules and starting from there to pinpoint combat variables to check ? Or was it something more automated.


    I'd like to add a discovery regarding Luck that I made the hard way. The thac0 penalty only occurs if the unlucky attacker's final thac0 Luck penalty excluded is at least two points higher than the target final AC.

    In other words, the attacker at Luck 0 must, if critical misses didn't exist, genuinely miss the defender when rolling a 1. If even a 1 succeeds, then the entire Luck modifier is dismissed, which can make a pretty dramatic difference with high amounts.

    Verified only for negative values of Luck, with opcode 22 alone, intoxication alone, and both together. Important detail that I tend to forget, you guys seem to be mostly on Enhanced Edition. This is verified for vanilla BG2:TOB, not EE.


    At 0 Luck, we should get : Thac0 - AC >= 2, which is a regular to-hit formula that means "Attacker must roll at least a 2 in order to hit".

    So the easy formula is Final AC <= Final thac0 - 2, which is the condition that guarantees that the attacker will suffer from the Luck penalties imparted on them. It's a guarantee *and* a necessity: To stress the point, if that condition isn't met, -1000 Luck will be the same as 0. Once the condition is met and only then can we apply the thac0 penalty coming from Luck, reaching a new, different "Final final thac0" that will determine if attacks connect. (Of course this new thac0 is not to be used with the formula above...)


    If Yaga Shura has a final thac0 of -16, it doesn't matter how much of an unlucky drunkard he is, I need -18 AC for it to even matter. Note that final thac0 includes special effects like Blindness (-10 penalty), or defender invisibility (-4 thac0 penalty unless the attacker can see the invisible).

    A blind Yaga Shura has a main hand thac0 of -6, so if I have an AC of -8 or below, his terrible luck will help me. Otherwise, it's as if he had had 0 Luck, when it comes to accuracy. I say accuracy because it does seem that Luck still affects damage rolls unconditionally, at least at a glance.

    As for the offhand, it has its own thac0, so its accuracy can be affected by Luck even when the main hand's is not.

    Anyway, if Luck can enter the stage, and Yaga Shura is terminally drunk, his thac0 is not just merely -6, but a whooping +6, which means he needs to roll a minimum of 6-(-8) = 14 to hit a -8 AC, as opposed to *always* hitting with but a single point of AC above, at -7, for then the minimum roll to hit is -6-(-7) = 1. A critical miss then comes in and overrides that success, but it doesn't matter here.




    Here's data I gathered in search of an answer.

    Ascension's end game Yaga Shura, FINYAGA.CRE, has:

    - Base thac0: -5
    - 23 STR: -5
    - Weapons main hand / off hand: -5/-4
    - Relevant grand mastery: -2
    - Maxed out dual wielding: 0/+2
    - Shuruppak's Plate: +1

    That makes a final thac0 of -16/-13.


    I made items to facilitate testing. They are tested on vanilla BG2:TOB (by which I mean not enhanced edition) with Ascension installed. In case the reader is not familiar with the process, make sure to backup FINYAGA.CRE and FINYAGA.BCS, if you want to give it a try. They are located in the game's override folder and a copy should be made outside of the game directory. Then paste the content of the ZIP into the override folder and overwrite the two Yaga Shura files. In game, create the protective item with CLUAConsole:CreateItem("CUSTOM"), and equip it. After reading below what it does and getting ready, summon Yaga Shura with CLUAConsole:CreateCreature("FINYAGA"). You know his final thac0 so just adapt your AC and/or his thac0 as you wish.


    One item is a ring for Yaga Shura, putting him in permanent improved haste and granting him 10 attacks per round, while applying the same bad luck effects as the following Wish spells but without time limit, for a total of -17 Luck.

    - SPWISH33.SPL: Intoxication incremented by 100 wearing out over 20 minutes. That's -12 LUK at the beginning, I have not verified at which rate intoxication decreases if it does in this situation. It's even possible that it doesn't start to wear out *until* 20 minutes have passed, for all I know.
    - SPWISH34.SPL: -5 Luck for 1 minute. (Opcode 22, which stacks with itself and other sources)


    The other item is a bracer for the testing character, which reduces all casting times to 0, puts them under permanent alacrity, adds 5 wizard spell slots to all levels, grants unlimited innate abilities of Rest and Wish, sets wisdom to 18, grants weapon immunity up to +5, and adds +100 fire resistance. It also adds or removes AC depending on the value set through NearInfinity, but that effect is currently disabled (probability 0%).

    Things to know:
    - Blur: -3 AC
    - Spirit armor: Sets base AC to 1 (-4 AC over the Robe of Vecna)
    - Improved invisibility: -4 thac0 to an attacker unable to see the invisible, after they are able to target the user again. Yaga Shura is such an attacker.
    - Power word, Blind: -10 thac0, possibly cumulative with itself for maximum cheese
    - ...


    I'll share a sample of the data because it is odd and quite unlike the regular combat logs, where Luck is not involved or barely. The leftmost number is the dice roll, the rightmost one is *supposed* to be added to defender AC, granting a successful hit if the sum is (strictly ?) superior to 0. How exactly the middle one is computed, I am not sure, it's an odd way to log the to-hit formula.


    Main hand thac0 : -16 naturally, and 1 with -17 Luck.

    The following is the regular in-game feedback, it's to-hit rolls from the main hand of a -17 Luck Yaga Shura against a -7 AC defender:

    Combat log Outcome Comment
    1 + 12 = 13Critical miss
    2 + 11 = 13Hit
    3 + 10 = 13Hit
    4 + 9 = 13Hit
    5 + 8 = 13Hit
    6 + 7 = 13Hit
    7 + 6 = 13Hit
    8 + 5 = 13HitAnything above this should be a miss, if Luck was not ignored: 1 - (-7) = 8
    9 + 4 = 13Hit
    10 + 3 = 13Hit
    11 + 2 = 13Hit
    12 + 1 = 13HitAnything above this should be a miss, with Improved invisibility: 1 + 4 - (-7) = 12
    13 + 0 = 13Hit
    14 - 1 = 13Hit
    15 - 2 = 13Hit
    16 - 3 = 13Hit
    17 - 4 = 13Hit
    18 - 5 = 13Hit
    19 - 5 = 14HitThe Luck penalty is unleashed only if the AC bonus on top of -7 can move the "minimum roll required to hit" all the way to 19. That means -18 final AC. And suddenly all 1-18 rolls miss. Yet at -17 AC, all 1-17 rolls did connect. 1-(-18) = 19
    20 - 5 = 15Critical hit

    Normally, the rightmost value changes, but not the middle one. I can see it changing because of Luck, but I don't quite see how the combat log comes up with that yet.




    Anyway, the conclusion is again just that if a player wants to rely on Luck debuffs to accuracy, they need to make sure their final AC is at most 2 points lower than what the attacker's final thac0 is when Luck equals 0.

    If a player wants to rely on Luck boosts for accuracy, they shouldn't have much of a problem as it is rare that a strong opponent can be hit 100% of the time. Except....with The Answerer +4, increasing its victims' AC by 2 on each hit, soon reaching the no-luck area, potentially leading to *more* missed strikes. But soon enough the Answerer shall grab accuracy back anyway, it always has the last word.


    Reminder: I only tested negative values of Luck, the Luck boost paragraph is an untested extrapolation. Also BG2:EE's behavior is unverified.

    Post edited by ProbablyNotANumber on
  • kjeronkjeron Member Posts: 1,357
    @ProbablyNotANumber From the first post:
    Alonso said:

    Each time a die is rolled and a luck modification applies, the modification is added or substracted from the roll, but without exceeding the roll natural limits.

    If you could hit on a 1 with zero luck (ignoring the aspect of critical misses), then you can hit on any roll with any amount of luck, as it can't reduce the roll any further.

    ProbablyNotANumberAerakar
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