Fallout Tactics Redux Version 1.2

Discussion in 'Fallout Tactics Modding' started by Endocore, Sep 19, 2015.

  1. Hubal

    Hubal First time out of the vault

    Sep 11, 2014
    Vree you actually finished the goddam game so quickly?
    I am having trouble with the 1 mission, where dog bites me for 30 damage points and that means instadeath. Maybe patting dogs head wasnt the brightest idea after all. Well anyway Tough guy mode is a bitch. Is it me or Stitch is looking like David Beckam?

    1. It seems premade characters are better. Ammon has 2 bonus attribute points and geoff has 1 more.
    If you modify them then you can't start the game.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2015
  2. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!
    Modder

    Mar 14, 2010
    @Vree


    Thanks for the detailed comments. These are the kinds of information that are very helpful to me in thinking about where Redux needs to go in the future.


    The general approach to the recruit pool might be described as making the characters available in the earliest part of the game highly flexible so a player who keeps them long-term can customize them to his specific tastes (and therefore they must be quite generic), while later in the game recruits are fairly specialized in the skills likely to be utilized by the widest array of players (small guns, energy weapons) since by that point if they're specialized otherwise the player won't have game-time to modify them to be useful for his own style of play. Certainly there are many improvements that need to be made to the recruit pool, but that's my general approach to the matter.


    The trouble is, there are a great many ways to play the game, and they must all be considered. For example, you didn't find Stitch useful during the first mission while for me he always gets just as many kills as everyone else there. He typically functions as bait for ambushes, either having enemies led to him by Farsight and the main character, or else charging to draw fire while Farsight and the main character flank the opponents. Another part of the problem with Stitch, indirectly, is the high volume of stimpacks found on the first map-- those were all there in the original game. In most other maps I've greatly reduced the number of stimpacks available, since I think players should be encouraged to use medics and kits instead. On map one, however, the vital role of medic is unnecessary due to all the stimpacks. I'm reluctant to change this, because many players have great difficulty adapting to the increased lethality of weapons in Redux, and any player who can't advance past the first map in a reasonable time is going to abandon the mod.


    All the extra items are there to support different styles of play as well. For example, you found the tribal gear useless because it sounds like your style of play is fairly no-frills and by the book (certainly nothing wrong with that). Yet a great many players really get into detailed characterizations for their soldiers, and the purpose of all these items is to support that sort of gameplay. Leaving aside all the new stuff I added, for example I myself often characterize Farsight as liking Classic Nuka-Cola, and pick another team member who will prefer the regular variety. During lulls in the action, I can then amuse myself by imaginging Farsight arguing with this other person about why Classic Nuka Cola is immanently superior to regular Nuka Cola, etc. Players who aren't into the character aspect can ignore these items with no problem, but it would be a serious design shortcoming to say the items aren't needed in the game.


    On the issue of different packages (bugfix only, etc), I haven't supported it much and don't intend to support it in the future. The inspiration to make Redux is my firm belief that the original game is deeply flawed, and needs to be re-imagined. Since the game is easy to edit and significant changes can be made by end-users, I mod it, but if this was not the case the truth is I would have played the game once or twice when it first came out 15 years ago, and would never have played it again. This is why I'm always saying all the bugfixes in the world won't help the game without other major changes as well. Fixing bugs is only one of three main focal points of FOT Redux, and without a comprehensive approach to change my opinion is that the game isn't worth playing.


    Keep these comments coming. As I said, details like this from players are exactly what will lead to future improvements in the mod. Many beneficial changes in FOT Redux 1.2 were taken directly from the pages of this forum, based on feedback from players of the older versions.

    @Hubal


    The Stitch portrait was from one of the portrait packs in the credits, I'm not sure who it is (I don't follow celebrities much, it's possible actually is a picture of Beckham).


    I'll take a look at what you mentioned about the prefabs, as something doesn't sound right there.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2015
  3. Vree

    Vree First time out of the vault

    Sep 29, 2015
    Ugh, really? I dislike "cheat" characters, with the exception of when if it is only a single rare early perk, or out of race trait, and the guy is intentionally a quirky offer.
    I'd much prefer if they were all built the normal way.
    I noticed that this mod has a lot of these - nearly all recruits are a couple of attribute points off.
    Could've just as easily sunk/borrowed those extra points into/from CH, imho.

    If you plan to finish it on Tough Guy you have my...sympathy? You got the free time to restart each mission from scratch every time one of your guys buys it? ;)

    Yeah, when I first tried the mod, I was appalled, too, when the very first enemy (the guard with the two dogs) basically gang raped my entire squad, I've had serious doubts about the new difficulty at that point. :p

    I did write some complaints about damage in my 1st post but then later removed them because I found it easier to overcome on the 2nd playthrough, but yeah my complaints were basically the same as yours: very often a single roll can result in insta-death. Whether it is a high damage roll, a critical, two shots in a row, etc. is unimportant, the point is that even the most cautious player is forced to form a close & intimate relationship with the Save and Load Game buttons, and I'm not sure if saving every 15 seconds after you reloaded 3x is the difficulty level you'd want.

    And just because I'm having less difficulty for the 2nd time doesn't mean much, because I could've started this 2nd game on Hard difficulty setting and I didn't. Again, I agree with SOME damage increase in general, and the problem is not that it forces you to think/buld your chara well/utilize your squad, but these 1 hit death situations. Sometimes you just can not prevent firing a gun at the same time as your opponent.

    Missions can actually be completed much faster now, since instead of shooting at each other with the enemy for a minute, now it's either he dies or you die. Make sure that he's the one who dies. :p
    I think it's not so bad once you recognize how the game is meant to be played, you just need decent EN (which is actually important in this version), heal damage as soon as it happens, keep a distance, and most importantly, always shoot first.
    I'm even playing the first few levels in real-time mode now and my 10 PE/AG Rifle/Pistol guy and my 10 EN/ST Knife fighter have had little problems, as long as I always hit first and healed damage immediately.

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

    Anyway, here are some more 2nd playthrough observations from Mission 3:

    Bonus fanmade spy on the beginning. You know how I complained that some of the extra stuff seems out of place in the story/world? This is the kind of thing I was talking about.

    "...they left me at the bunker.[...]I noticed weird interference[...]So I drove out here to check it."


    -> Obviously I don't want to interfere with anyone's headcanon, but I undertand (both from FO1-2 and this game) that vehicles are supposed to be extremely rare in the Wastes and of huge value to the Midwestern BOS (Du Cain's (fan)guide has a great section saying that they'd sacrifice an entire squad just to secure one, even inoperational ones for the replacement parts), so I doubt a rookie could just "borrow" one.
    If she had noticed a strange interference, she should have reported it to her first avaliable immediate BOS superior. The BOS'd have then decided if it was going to send out a division to investigate.

    Basically this person:
    1. failed to report important information
    2. left the bunker without acquiring permit when she has not been assigned to go on a mission
    3. TOOK a vehicle that is probably worth more than the life of her entire squad without a permit
    4. LOST said vehicle
    5. and then RAN AWAY, leaving the remains of said vehicle in the hands of the enemy instead of at least 'fessing up and trying to salvage the remaining parts.


    1 and 2's probaby would've gotten her demoted; 3 would have gotten her flogged and banished from the BOS, the 4 one will actually most likely get her executed and because of 5 her own mother is going to spit on her grave because she clearly is a dishonor to the BOS who can't own up to her mistakes or put personal safety below the interest of the BOS, and shouldn't have even been allowed to become an Initiate.


    "This drone...Maybe you can get some sense out of it?"
    -> nitpick, but another thing I don't like is that many of these new guys use "NPC speech". You know the drill. "This next to me is my brother. I think he has a quest for you! Why don't you talk to him?" That's not how a normal person talks about somebody right next to him - obviously.

    - Still digging the improvements made to enemy behavior. (though obviously they will still ignore corpses, get bored and return to their posts after a while, etc. but that cannot be helped :p )

    - I saw requests for a weapon list somewhere in these threads, and I think one was made too, but I could not find it; zf there is ever a new release, would it be possible to include it in the .zip file alongside the other Extras? I'm sure many of us'd love to browse through the list of items without needing a Save file from the last level.

    - I forgot to ask this one earlier: what happened to the Sunbeam Gattling Laser? I remember that I was able to buy one before the final stage in the old game, but this time I searched for it in vain. (This was with a 10 CH character too, mind.)
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2015
  4. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!
    Modder

    Mar 14, 2010
    Hubal was right about the prefab characters-- if you attempt to edit them in-game, you can't proceed (error message "All stats must be in valid starting range before starting the game"). They can be used, as long as you don't attempt to modify them using the character creation process. I'm not immediately sure what can be done about this, but I'll give the problem some thought for the future.


    In the meantime, anyone who for some reason wants to use a prefab, but also wants customization, can use the FOT Editor that comes with the game to change the prefab however they want (the entity files are in \core\entities\Special\prefab\). This problem does not affect custom characters made from scratch, which I think is how 99 percent of players approach the game.


    Re-reading Vree's comments, a few more issues deserve elaboration:


    The question of who shoots first when enemies are in plain view is an interesting problem. Generally speaking, your characters will probably have a higher Perception than enemies, so many times you're aware of them but they're not aware of you-- which is why they don't attack. This phenomenon is also affected by an individual enemy's AI settings-- in the original game most of them are programmed to cower in one place and force you to come at them. This is boring and I've made innumerable changes, but there are still many enemies on most maps who use this sort of AI. Beyond that, there's an apparently inscrutable aspect to the phenomenon. A lot of modders, including myself, are unhappy with the way the engine uses music. If enemies see you first and initiate an attack, the battle music will begin playing; if vice-versa, no battle music plays. Therefore if anyone figures out the details of how all this aspect works, not only myself but all FOT modders would be very interested in hearing about it.


    In FOT Redux all Plasma weapons do radiation damage. It's mentioned as well in one of the articles found somewhere about the history of energy weapons in the game universe. This is designed to make the game harder, since player-characters suffer but enemies don't live long enough to be significantly affected by radiation. This effect can be minimized by having everyone take Rad-X at the start of each mission when fighting robots and reavers (the enemies who make frequent use of energy weapons). Rad-X supplies were a little too tight in the earlier version of Redux, so overall I probably increased the wider game availability of Rad-X in the current version by about fifty percent. I also boosted the radiation resistance of Environmental Armor and Power Armor, as they were too low before to reflect the idea that these are sealed suits of armor. Generally speaking, when wearing Environmental Armor you won't need Rad-X, and if wearing Power Armor one Rad-X will boost you to full immunity.


    Regarding recruits, one thing I've thought about on several occassions is to bump up the basic skill levels in throwing, unarmed, and small guns to reflect the benefits of basic training by the Brotherhood. In truth I just forgot about it this time around, but since I removed the training switches from the bunkers the effect of this oversight is likely amplified during gameplay. Comments are welcomed on this issue.


    Of all recruits, Deathclaws and Mutants are in the worst shape as I've done the least work on them. I almost always play with human recruits, and I think I in the past I was hoping someone who is really into using Deathclaws or Mutants would give some detailed feedback on how to improve them, which I haven't seen. These classes are definitely scheduled for improvement in a future version of Redux.


    The dog tags will someday be much more important (in a future version). For now, they're mostly just placeholders. In missions like St. Louis, they can add a role-playing element for those who wish to avail themselves of such (take one tag off the dead soldiers to-- using your imagination-- turn in at the bunker with your report, leave the other so follow-up teams can identify the dead for burial). Sadly custom main characters can never get dog tags, since there's no way to make an entity on the fly using the character's custom values. This is unfortunate, since it would completely resolve the age-old issues with tag names in campaign games.


    I agree about adding higher cash-value treasure-type items, for the gameplay purpose of minimizing hauling junk around. Micromanaging inventory simply isn't fun, and is a problem with the entire genre of games to which FOT belongs. Jewelry is good for this purpose, since it's lightweight and has high monetary value.


    Some day I'll probably incorporate the use of FT Improver into Redux. I have important reasons for refraining from doing so, but it's inevitable I suppose. Until then, due to the engine's lack of versatility unfortunately not a lot can be done to improve the whole class of thrown weaponry. I'll take a look at the range in particular, but there are hard-coded limits there as well and I'm not sure how much improvement can be made. Spears in particular are a problem-- many enemies simply refuse to throw them, no matter how high their strength and throwing skill is. This means having a spear-armed enemy equals having an ineffective enemy, and therefore spears are uncommon.


    Unfortunately the random encounter aspect of the game was a last minute add-on by Microforte, and simply doesn't work very well. Your suggestions are solid, but can't be implemented due to engine restrictions. All of the perks related to random encounters don't work at all; they're flat-out busted and can't be fixed. Hopefully I noted this in all their descriptions, if I missed any let me know.


    On melee weapons, in general the original game is full of useless, nearly identical stuff. Over the long term I intend to remove most of these (plungers, five kinds of blackjacks, etc), so the player is left with a few items with clearly defined uses to choose from rather than a confusing muddle of silliness.


    Unarmed skill (compared to Melee skill) becomes much more useful later in the game, as numerous perks can be taken to benefit Unarmed usage. One change in Redux 1.2 is that I noted in many perk descriptions that I found an unfixable bug-- many perks you'd expect to work with both Unarmed and Melee in fact only work for Unarmed, making the latter by far the better choice over the long term. Examples include Silent Death and Slayer.


    On difficulty, I made the mod so perhaps it's to be expected to some extent, but my people hardly ever get killed. One of the ways the mod seeks to increase difficulty is to require the use of sound tactics and tactical thinking, since the original SP campaign never lived up to the name in that respect. Don't just run toward enemies and start shooting. Flank them, sneak up on them, draw them out from their positions into ambushes, position your troops so you can deliver effective fire on the enemy but he can't effectively return fire, and so forth.


    Due to hard-coded design flaws with the way the engine handles burst fire, miniguns aren't very effective. Players who are fond of them somehow never notice this, but it's been discussed to death almost since the day the original game was initially released. Also, heavy weapons in general disrupt the "tactical" game balance. Overall, miniguns are being gradually removed from FOT Redux for all these reasons.




    Thanks again for the useful comments, I'm interested to hear more.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2015
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  5. Hubal

    Hubal First time out of the vault

    Sep 11, 2014
    Well after some calculating Stitch and Farsight has 1 bonus attribute point. Stitch has higher many base skills. Is this some sort of a way to balance the rucruits?
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2015
  6. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!
    Modder

    Mar 14, 2010
    @Hubal

    Anyone can edit the recruits to suit their tastes using the Editor that comes with the game. The only thing to keep in mind in the particular case of Farsight and Stitch is that if you edit their inventory, you'll have to edit the mission 1 map as well and replace the instance of them there; this is not necessary for any other recruits. Other than this, the stats you mentioned are not a problem, I set them that way.

    I found the source of the problem you mentioned with prefabs, it's fixed for a future update. :smile:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2016
  7. Hubal

    Hubal First time out of the vault

    Sep 11, 2014
    You mean I can change portraits and stuff? Thats great thx for info.
    Well its too hard for me too use it anyway...
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2015
  8. Vree

    Vree First time out of the vault

    Sep 29, 2015
    Very good answers, thank you.


    If you have not created them with the starting characteristics as the rules dictate it, the game recognizes that. If you edited say, a few extra attribute points on any of the original FOT prefab characters, the result would be the same. (You could press Take but would not be able to Modify.) The solution is simple, don't cheat. If I recall correctly, the characters you made all had some bonus attribute points and that is why this happens.



    I love that by the way and I'd like you to do the same for poison for the Bunker Beta missions, not just all types of insects (wasp, scorp, giant roach) but also Beastmaster weapons should use poison relatively much.


    It seems to me the game can be give a natural progression even with the avaliable tools, and you seem to have noticed & apllied this already, judging from the new stats you gave to Steel Armor.
    If you split the game to 5 phases which all roughly map to a named bunker, you get


    Raiders
    Beastlords, radscorps, roaches (poison)
    Mutants (high damage, explosives)
    Reavers (radiation, electric)
    Robots (high damage, radiation, electric)


    which can be reflected in the armors that become avaliable to the character after unlocking each bunker:


    Leather Armor ->
    Enviromental Armor -> protects from poison (radscorp/radroach/wasp, deathclaw and beastlord)
    Metal Armor -> protects from heavy gunfire (mutants) and explosions
    Tesla Armor & Reaver bending -> protects from electric attacks & radiation
    Power Armor -> protects from heavy damage attacks, electric attacks, and extreme radiation


    and I think a point worth making before I get into the full discussion about nonhuman characters is that this means that you can give nonuman characters rad and poison resistances from the very beginning and they would STILL not be busted, even if a player wants to run them from the 1st mission, because those resistances only come into play later (and map roughly to upgrading to Enviromental and Tesla Armor and then Power Armor).


    and following this logic the armors would roughly look like


    Leather Armor
    10 AP 20 DR
    Enviromental Armor
    10 AP 20 DR, % poison/fire resist
    Metal Armor
    20 AP 40 DR
    Tesla Armor
    20 AP 40 DR, % radiaton/energy resist
    Power Armor
    30 AP 60 DR, % radiaton/energy/poison/fire resist


    FOT is guilty of aping the original FO1-2 games too much so Leather Armor starts at a very high 15 AC and if you take it off you're toast.
    So you are absolutely correct about what this means to nonhumans: if you run a deathclaw through the 1st mission, it will die pretty quickly unlike a human Unarmed character, simply because of how much the basic Leather Armor means.

    So, the very least, mutants and deathclaws should have default racial bonuses that are equivalent to basic Leather Armor, or they are not going to survive.

    Upgrading that defense has been set up in a strange way but it's not impossible, you basically have to take perks for it. And so those perks are pretty much obligatory,


    deathclaws go:
    basic resistances + Brutish Hulk + Hide of Scars


    mutants go:
    basic resistances + mutant armor + Tough Hide


    these are not without problems still:


    Tough Hide is semi-busted because it requires LESS than 8 EN, not more. As long as people agree not to make a high-EN mutant character it should be fine, but it's rather dumb.


    Brutish Hulk is great, as long as you don't mind using up all healing equipment x3 as fast (naturally, reducing damage is better than having more hp.)


    Oh, I almost forgot to mention: I think MkII armors could easily be removed from the picture for low CH players. While everyone should be able to afford the next MkI upgrade, it is fine if only the best traders/collectors will get every MkII. (No need to make Leather Armor MkII a step before Enviro Armor, as it was in the old game.)

    EDIT: One more point here:
    Mardin and Quincy are the two last missions in Bunker Beta (before you re-add Springfield), and the next mission is the first mutant mission, Bunker Gamma's St. Louis. Which means that anyone who could not afford the 2nd armor upgrade is going to be toasted by heavy gunfire.
    It is impossible for Deathclaws to have unlocked Hide of Scars at this point, and ghouls can only use enviromental armor, so their damage resistance is at 1 step below what'd be needed for the next missions at best.
    So basically Deathclaws need the equivalent of 2 armor upgrades (built-in Metal Armor) , to be rounded up into a rudimentary power armor with Hide of Scars/Brutish Hulk later, if they want to be playable as they appear now in the campaign.


    I'm 110% on board with this and in fact FOT itself does this somewhat arbitarily anyway. A bigger starting bonus by say 30% on Small Guns, Throwing, Melee, Unarmed will eliminate the frequent misses for the first 2 levels (while hopefully still low enough that it does not completely eliminate the drawback from Gifted for example, or unlock every Unarmed special attack for every character). This is a much better solution that handing out 3 Guns&Bullets books.





    See above, and also,
    Generally, Deathclaws move faster on the map while Mutants move slower.
    Which I feel should be reflected in how far they can move per AP in combat, too, ie. Deathclaws would have an effective free Bonus Move perk, while mutants would have the opposite.
    It'd be nice if this could be done.


    In general, I think if a mutant/deathclaw character and a human character can reach about the same stats by taking the same number of perks and maxing all possible equipment, it can be called balanced. What I mean is that if they have a built-in Bonus HtH Damage (and with mutants Bonus Ranged Damage), Rad Resistance, Snakeeater, Bonus Move and Toughness perks, then even if a human does not actually take these perks but would reach more or less the same overall stats, that is then good. (That does not remove the need for high AC/DR on the last levels but helps.)


    Does this get achieved right now, probably not, but it should not be impossible.


    Ghouls are the least problematic since they can use most armors. (And their rad/energy resistance matches up nicely with the non-usable Tesla Armor.)


    Eventually I'd like playable dogs and robots, for that one'd have to fix the dog no-climbing problem first. Robots are only problematic if people want to run them from the 1st mission, in which case high starting AP/DR must be swapped for new "upgrade" items you get with each new bunker.



    There are a couple of features I'd love that are probably impossible to implement:
    - there should be some sort of "trade items" key or button that'd effectively activate a Steal on an ally character (hijacking that skill's script or something), so that characters can trade items more easily.
    - Shops & bartering should automatically use the highest Barter skill and CHA in the party, and the same would be nice for talking to the recruits master.
    - also the highest Outdoorsman/LK in the party should be used while wandering on the map; this'd give actual value to Outdoorsman type recruits.


    When you use an active skill (say, Lockpick) while you have the whole party selected (F12), the game already moves the character with the highest skill. Not expecting that to be something borrowable, but it's a thing.


     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2015
  9. Vree

    Vree First time out of the vault

    Sep 29, 2015
    So you're basically telling everybody to edit one of your premade characters instead of Create New to get 2 extra attribute points? :(

    Why do you need to cheat at all?
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2015
  10. mk-fg

    mk-fg First time out of the vault

    Aug 24, 2015
    There seem to be a bug in the very first bunker - when you start combat there, and backup in env/power armors arrives, none of these folks can shoot their machineguns.
    So if one is to hide behind some boxes and slaughter all the roaming elders and scribes, these backup troops can then be slooooowly punched to death, as they are totally helpless.

    fbos0000.jpg

    Can't use their M60s either due to ST requirement though, maybe that's what these troops need as well?

    ---

    Unlike Vree, I didn't have much trouble with being killed, at least on the very first mission, and like increased lethality of combat a lot.

    But obviously having only completed one mission, don't know and can't comment on whether it holds throughout the whole game - e.g. JA2 (non-modded) and Infinity-engine RPGs (like IWD) changed drastically from highly-lethal combat in the beginning to a hit/bullet-sponges at the higher levels.

    EDIT: playing in CTB mode btw, guess such combat changes can apply very differently to pure Turn-Based mode.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2015
  11. mk-fg

    mk-fg First time out of the vault

    Aug 24, 2015
    One other strange quirk, that might also be intentional: one can steal/buy Laser Pistol and Ripper right after entering the first bunker, but there doesn't seem to be any SEC ammo for these on sale, while trader next to quartermaster sells MFC ammo instead.

    EDIT: same goes for cattle prods sold by qm, I think.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2015
  12. mk-fg

    mk-fg First time out of the vault

    Aug 24, 2015
    Strange, but I seem to have had a very different experience.
    Main char has LK=7, not sure if maybe I'm just lucky though.

    Went on a short detour to the south of bunker-alpha before the third mission (Rock Falls), and had the following encounters, in this exact order:

    • Citizens - non-hostile, fancy, goof.
    • Dogs - huge pack, ran like hell as soon as I saw how many of them are out there.
    • Field Hospital - fairly large and very cool location.
    • Lot of rad-scorps - very powerful wrt party level, but too slow to chase it in the open, kited and killed them all.
    • Goo Pond - interesting place.

      Spotted an issue here, I think:
      fbos0002_goo_pond_tile_hole.jpg
      There seem to be missing tile in that tent's floor.

      Jewelry actually comes in handy for trading with these, despite not as great conversion rate as with coins (which I think makes sense), as they have really cool stuff, yet nothing game-breaking as it's mostly ammo/misc/supplies and flavor items.
    • Dogs
    • Raiders
    • Tribals walking in line formation.

      Another quirk here - for some reason they seem to be hardcore pacifists:

      fbos0004_tribal_pacifists.jpg

      I.e. don't become aggressive even as you're massacring them, though I guess it makes as little sense as trying to purge the BOS bunker.

    And it was a really short detour too:

    fbos0008_detour.jpg

    Some of these were intercepted by outdoorsman skill.

    So overall, half of encounters were "positive", unless the word means something different here, and all were very fun or strategic, former ones adding a lot of flavor to the game, latter being no pushovers by any means (and actually quite brutal, prompting for fast "fight-or-flight" reaction and actual caution, not just some random nuisance).

    ---

    Also spotted a minor issue on Rock Falls mission - an apparently misaligned chest:

    fbos0006_msaligned_chest.jpg

    And wrt the mission itself, I wonder if it was considered (or, again, even possible) to alter the scripting of the Nanuk and Diesoon (both prisoners) to use the fuel dump door instead of the main gate to escape.

    Reason I'm mentioning this is because it seem to make way more sense in the context - you are heavily discouraged to use main entrance, and don't really have to - that side door is barely defended (unlike other side entrance thru minefield, which looks more like a trap) and easy enough to lockpick, so after sniping the leaders without alerting most of the raiders, it feels incredibly stupid that prisoners just throw main gates open and run to all the raiders there, so you still have to kill all these for no reason.

    That after great previous mission (like a lot what you did with the map there btw!), where you barely had to kill anyone if you checked the map and the briefing - just like 5 patrolling guys near main alarm - elder and prisoner used back exit to slip away like you'd expect them to.

    It's also a bit sad that while most leaders in that camp seem to have shortcuts to them (i.e. a window to snipe thru, locked 1st-floor door straight to main boss, etc), Daisy does not, though understandable why there'd be no windows in that place, given the context.
     
  13. Vree

    Vree First time out of the vault

    Sep 29, 2015
    ^Thanks. Nice. I've just cleared the map in the unpatched game (ie. wandered around until all was revealed and I got most special encounters, and I might do the same for Redux when I have the time.

    (Was any fixing possible to things like the Pipboy encounter, inability to leave secret locations after entering a 2nd time, etc. I wonder.)

    ---
    Anyway I've kinda given up on a 2nd replay at this point and went back to playng the unpatched FOT a bit for nostalgia, for 2 main reasons.
    (I also don't like many of the "bonus content" changes (I'll elaborate on this later) but that one is minor.)

    One (the smaller) reason is the damage:
    I'm feeling like a...slasher, like I have the Slayer and Sniper perk on cheat, just running around killing everybody in 1 hit. I just don't think it is a challenge much if the enemies do not even get the chance to shoot back.
    Tactics don't actually work better in the mod.
    There aren't many say, enemies working around a base on a clear scripted path (which'd create opportunities for dropping some mines or setting up ambushes).
    I liked when they attacked hostages first or when they grouped together (I imagine using surround tactics would be too much to ask for with this engine), but that is too little unfortunately.

    The SECOND one & the one that actually breaks the camel's back is the aforementioned busted recruit pool.
    I don't think Endocore realizes how important it is that you can build your own team and win on your own terms, how it is an even BIGGER part of the game for many than the actual shooting.

    So I kind of want to repeat some points I had to say about this.

    The unpatched recruit pool is actually excellent. (The 1.27 version is a bit more beefed up than the previous but both kinda work.) You really should go back and look at them and think about it more deeply.

    I can not describe how exciting it is to equip for example, a good Traps/Unarmed character like Torn or a Lockpicker with Small Guns as an emergency skill (who you can give the low damage 3 ST pistols to), and then realize that one of your favorite missions is coming up next, like Quincy. I will use different combinations for different playthroughs, like 3 melee fighters, then 3 snipers, then a balanced team, and so on.
    It's not all just about arriving on a mission and immediately getting 3 deathclaws down your neck and stuff like that. It's not just about difficulty.
    It's the enjoyment you get from picking characters who can approach situations in certain ways and the joy you get when they use all of those skills that you equipped them with to solve a situation their own way.
    It's about different skill combinations making each playthrough differ in small but important ways, and being able to try them all for yourself.
    If your recruit pool does not support this, it FAILS.

    - About customizability of characters:
    A character's base stats are not going to change much during the game, or rather at all, at least not until lvl 12 where emergency fixes for some of the more serious problems (Tag!, Mutate!, Gain, or even Weapon Handling) become avaliable.
    Consequently, a character's fate is already decided upon creation. A PE 6 character is never, ever going to become a proper Small Guns user and low ST can forget Big Guns, Unarmed and Melee.
    The only time where such characters can thrive is if either these skills are offered as their 2nd or 3rd useful skill (because any character might need a fighting skill for back-up, even ones with a support focus) or if they are offered huge bonuses elsewhere to balance out (eg. a high EN and AG "Bonus HtH Attacks" Unarmed character might be worth a look even in spite of a low ST).

    - If you wanna satisfy your RP urges by giving attractive characters more Charisma this is not really the game for that. Maybe, like, in D&D you'd like to play a stupid wizard but you have to realize that the mechanics do not support that. Fudging the stats for this purpose is an even bigger sin and should never be tolerated.
    Similarly, if you think tribal recruits should all have Throwing/Outdoorsman/Melee, fight that urge and consider if and where in the game those stats could be of use for the next mission, instead.

    - Fudged stats: don't. It kills the player's motivation to level up heroes, and work to unlock new recruits, when a game doesn't exercise self-restraint in how it hands out achievements.
    I can't tell you how many times it struck me I could just go into the editor and give myself cheat stats when I see some of the premade characters (like Fleetfoot with his +6 attribute points), something that has NEVER occured to me in the unpatched game.

    The only proper places for "cheat" stats are either rare very very high level recruits, or when it can be justified because it saves a skill, race, etc. that'd otherwise be unusable.
    For example, I can accept the early appearance of Bonus HtH Attacks on some characters because Fast Shot in itself an exploit of identical size, just one that is supported by the rules-as-written.
    Again, I recommend looking at the original recruit pool because it does this very well.

    - The game can be split into Small Guns (Aplha, Beta) -> Big Guns (Gamma) -> EW (Delta, Epsilon) phases based on what the enemies are using the most.
    It is a MUST that you follow this and offer more Small Guns character early on, and more EW during the end.

    Do not offer only 1-2 Small Guns for the first few ranks. (Consider a player who wanted to make a support main character also, is Farsight gonna be her only Small Guns for several missions? please.)

    - Similarly, do not offer characters before their focus skills even become playable - like a Lvl 1 Repair/Pilot guy after the first missions. The first vehicle appear in a Bunker Beta mission.

    - Do not give a starting character (Stitch) Barter, it is the same as if you've lowered the prices, but now it's compulsory to go through the sell-all-through-one-character dance, and taking Bsrter yourself has no point. Let the player decide if he wants to tag a skill on herself for lower prices.

    - IN directly determines how many skills a character can fully develop:
    3 IN: 1 okay skill
    6 IN: 1 perfect skill or 2 okay skills
    9 IN: 1 perfect skill and 1 okay skill, or 3 okay skills
    Gifted reduces everything by 1 step, so for 2 ok skills you'll need 9 IN.

    Keep this in mind when deciding how many useful skills you give to any character. A 4 IN character with only 1 usable tag skill, or one that has to choose between 2 tag skills (like a 4 IN Unarmed/Melee guy) are possible, but limited and so should have better stats (focus atts/traits) overall. Beth in the original pool is an example.

    -I will try to use every weapon in the game, if only for fun - constantly being offered them encourages that. This is regardless whether they are actually useful. So I will usually have a character for each.
    But with everything else, I will focus on the dominant weapons of the phase, like Small Guns at the beginning.

    ((I can equip a Flamer Pistol and a P220Sig Sauer on Robin, my Lockpick focus character.Even the description says they are weak weapons, but on the other hand they can be used by somebody with only 3 ST. So I may like to have a character in my team whose 3rd skill is Small Guns (he won't be a fighter, only an emergency one) I can give those to.

    I keep Trevor around for Throwing and I give him every new spear and grenade even if I think throwables are heavy & weak, just so that I can explore and experience that part of the game, too.)

    - Consider the next upcoming mission(s) always, when deciding the rank/bunker/completed mission that makes some characters avaliable. Eg. a Lvl 4 "Rad Resistance" character could be a useful unlock right before Preoria. Characters' usefulness will vary greatly based on when you offer them.

    - Consider the low CH players too. High CH getting better recruits is good; low CH not getting any usable recruits is bad. Many player minmax Ch by reflex and so their entire experience is going to be what they see with that, but even high CH will be forced to play with Initiates/Senior Initates at first. Many players don't even play past the first few missions so don't ruin their experience. It is actually more important to have clear progression and good recruits on the first few ranks than whether there higher ranks are busted, because that's what players will see the most for the aforementioned reasons.

    - It is good to have recruits who are "upgrades" of previous recruits. Eg. if there's a Melee/Traps guy and a few ranks later there's another Melee/Traps guy with better focus stats (say, high IN) then Ican swap the 1st guy without changing the rest of my team. This can be important for players who grow attached to their characters or to certain skill/att combinations.

    (Finishing Quincy just now I have access to Babs the ghoul who is another Lockpick/Small Guns specialist but with better stats (8 IN, 7 PE, 8 AG) than Robin, my previous character for them.)

    - Absolutely do not offer characters that force the player to fill up a slot for no good reason.
    Like having only one Traps guy avaliable who can not do anything else, and so you're stuck with a lost slot for one or more ranks. I think this goes without saying.

    - Anyway, long story short. I think my "ideal" team in the beginning, one that covers all bases is something like:

    3 Small guns guys
    1 Melee/Unarmed guy
    1 Throwing guy
    1 support with low ST Small Guns for backup


    2ndary skills someone (preferably the Support, if not then a high IN character) should have:
    Sneak, Lockpick, Traps, 1st Aid.


    Barter, Steal, Gambling, Doctor are useful but I'd much rather leave someone home in the bunker who has them.

    this does not change that much in the later game:
    you swap 2 of the Small Guns guys for EW guys by Delta, and the Throwing guys will be using Big Guns too from Gamma.

    -end-

    - Anyway, cutting long story short, I'll tell my recent (unpatched) FOT recruits experience.

    One time I took Rage/Ice/Jo and made an all-sniper team.
    Maybe next time I'll take Kevin/Torn/Stevie (ST/EN/AG in that order) and make an all-close combat team. That's the point, I can try all kinds of things.

    Right now though I went for a more balanced team. So I've got:

    Farsight and Brian to use Small Guns.
    Trevor for Throwing and for carrying a lot (ST).
    Torn for Unarmed and Melee (and good ST/EN) and for Traps.
    Robin for Lockpick, and the Melee and Sneak doesn't hurt. (ST 5 so he's never gonna be much good at fighting, but it's his 3rd skill, it's for emergencies only anyway.)


    It's not neccessarily a great team, and in my last playthroughs I've had completely different ones, but it covers all bases. I'll never be stuck because I don't have a person for something and I have as much fighting potential on everyone as possible.


    The funny thing is if even as I progress and I get better options, sometimes I don't switch if I feel my current team is working fine. People have an instinct for not wanting to mess up what's already working, and also grow attached to characters they've spent time on. I might've gotten used to sending a high EN Traps character first always and I'll have to change my habits if I want to make a switch to a high IN Traps guy.

    For example I go into the pool now and see:

    Stein


    He has Big Guns, Small Guns and First Aid tagged, and has 7 ST, 8 PE, 5 IN and his perk is Healer.
    None of his 3 focuses is crappy enough that you'd want to drop it completely, but neither is any of them outstanding.
    But since 5 INT can only support 1-2 skills, you'll probably be making a choice among his 3 areas. You MIGHT carry him around to use all 3, initially, and to have a fallback when new recruits who might be better at one of these become avaliable (and so allow you to focus Stein on another).


    He's unlike for example Rage who has a VERY strong Small Guns focus from the very beginning and is a good choice if you'd want a 2nd sniper, but on the other hand that's all his focus is ever really gonna be.

    I' also see characters with low IN and strong potential like Beth. ST 10, AG 8, EN 7 Heavy Handed, Unarmed/Melee and Bonus HtH Damage perk. (Maybe even TOO much for this rank.) But 4 IN.
    Generally low IN means they'll only ever develop 1 tag skill and even then they aren't going to be excellent. I rarely use them for that reason but there are many of such charactersin the pool and that is how it should be. They are perfect "use and then throw away" characters, once their development becomes culled if you got high CH you can just switch.


    As I look around I notice plenty of such recruits and opportunities I had for every rank that I just missed because I was content with my current team.


    And you know what I did? I was like, "eeh, I don't wanna switch Torn for Beth, I might need that Traps later on, and I don't like the other skill combinations they offer me for that that much (like Stumpy, Small Guns/Melee/Traps, I already picked my Small Guns guys). Plus that "bonus HtH attacks" is always nice. And she's worked just fine until now, and I'm kinda attached to the characters I've grown used to."

    Even though Mandy would've been a better character for shooting than Brian and Beth would top Torn.


    Suppose I take out Torn and put in Stumpy (for Small Guns and Traps) and Beth (for close combat). Now I have to replace a 2nd characer too but who? Brian is an obvious choice, all he has is Small Guns and a potential to maybe develop Big Guns one day (still a rarity skill at this level and I don't know if I'll like the later recruit options for it more). But he has Fast Shot which is kinda nice to have.
    (I'm saying this even though Brian has a very ad 5 PE. But also has a perfect 6 ST and high AG/EN which make him worth it.)


    But maybe I should not even take those characters, maybe I should just forget the whole approach and take Rage, you know? I might need a sniper focus later on more.


    So I'm just saying this to demonstrate how team planning goes in my head, and how the "official" recruit pool supports that perfectly There are plenty of good options, you're not fucked over if you don't choose the best and stick with the ones you like based on personal preference, and you always have a choice.

    These don't have to be the characters with the best attributes, but they should get the job done, they should cover every skill you may need, and they should be likeable.
    Not because of a 3-sentence backstory but the different (and EFFECTIVE) skill/skill combinations that make them play differently.

    ---
    Well THAT didn't sound preachy at all :p You probably knew most of this, but they are worth repeating so that the mod isn't dragged down by this one fault.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2015
  14. Vree

    Vree First time out of the vault

    Sep 29, 2015
    2nd mission:
    - have the guard in the Elder's tent be awake & alert by default, and start attacking the Elder if the alarm is activated. That'll make the mission more challenging and focus on protecting the Elder first a bigger priority.
    - I'd like to see more exit grids if possible. Generally I'd like to be able to exit in any direction on most maps, to save time if I finish with the party scattered.

    3rd mission:
    - If the broken buggy was possible to repair, it'd be an early use of the Repair skill (otherwise barely has use to non-robot PCs). That's so important, it excuses the entire scenario.

    1st mission:
    Knifes (KnifeKnife, Scalpel, etc.) stats on the 1st mission are all over the place, two of them make as much damage as a Cleaver despite the only 1 ST requirement (where Cleaver needs 4) while others have very very low damage.

    - healing powder should probably have 0 weight, same as the Stimpacks. Don't give me one more reaoson to dump them in the shop on top of the PE penalty.

    (My approach to shopping:
    collect everything -> we talked about this but I realized that I'd have to lot everything whether or not weapons have sale value, because keys are often in non-obvious places.
    Talk with the QM with every character and sell everything, skipping the step of loading every item to the character with the highest Barter. Not wasting more time on that.
    -> obviously this defeats half of Barter's point. Couldn't it be done that items always SELL at the same time, and only when buying is Barter calculated into it?)

    - probably known "bug": The basic FO pistol does not appear on the ground but creates a pic of itself above and to the left from the player. This picture can be clicked and "picked up" still.

    Bonus content "hate":
    While Barnaky's bodyguard is a logical addition if one wants to squeeze in more characters, I'd change her dialouge a bit to make the General not look like a complete paranoid idiot fearing for his life in this high security bunker. (Being allowed to agree with the general's semi-racist view is an important part of the game with its own ending, which doesn't work if his philosophy is clearly a result of irreasonable phobias.)
    A bodyguard here could be justifiedher if she was added in direct response to admitting deathclaws into the BOS and her presence required for those negotiations.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2015
  15. nadeauhugo

    nadeauhugo Author of FOT mod THE SUM Modder

    Mar 9, 2014

    Hi guys!!


    I really don't think luck as a lot to do with good encounters in FOT. First, it only concerns random encounters (marked as good, bad or critter). There is totally no way to mark any "special" location as good or bad. Maybe luck gives you more chance to get the special (they are set to 25% chance by default if I remember well). The Explorer perk seems to change something to good encounters too if I follow the description, but again It must only affect random encounters, and/or ALL "special" locations. Here is a list of good random encounters in the original game. I don't think it works that way (1 luck gives you a lot of bad encounters and 10 luck gives you a lot of good encounters). Or maybe it is just another broken hardcoded feature.


    // Hunting Party - Some tribals with a dead komodo
    // WarParty - A bunch of tribals on the warpath.
    // Trappers - Tribal trappers
    // NomadCitizens
    // Merchant Citizens
    // Homeless Wanderers
    // Farmers
    // Caravan
    // Escaped Slaves 01
    // Escaped Slaves 02
    // Junkies
    // Moonshiners - I'd love to include a still with these guys, plus piles of booze.
    // Traders
    // Hermit - Has a combat knife and some stim-packs
    // Vigilantes

    As you can "activate" some random encounters in FOT, I would suggest that you activate some really great good random encounters once the main character have enough luck skill. That implies to add a trigger to every mission/bunker map. That could unlock great game contents for specialized characters. Once the random encounter is activated (original game use that to add reavers and robots encounters only once they are discovered) it will be available until the end of the game. That is great since the main characters stats will never really go down. I myself want to use that to activate special encounters for characters with high "survival", "traps" and maybe even "pilot" skill. Theses skills will unlock bunch of berries, mushrooms, trapped animals ready to cook and working vehicules.

    Your idea for green circle is great too, because only core missions can be set to "visited (always visible), uncovered (visible but hidden) and covered (always invisible)" by triggers. And luck stat, level or else could affect the visibility of some locations. That means that if theses locations are in the "special" section instead, you can only rely on hard-coding of the game to make them appear, and we do not know clearly what modify that.
     
  16. Hubal

    Hubal First time out of the vault

    Sep 11, 2014
    Just watching this wall of text I see that you have really crazy fans of your mod Endocore.

    Maybe some masochist will join me on my Tough Guy playthrough? Anyway after 40 times trying to beat first mission I can see different behavior of Raiders. For example sometimes they run towards me and shoot me in the balls instead of crouching/standing all the time.

    P.S. Is something wrong with perception? I mean it doesnt give any bonuses to hit with guns. Stitch and farsight has same chance to hit me on skill level 51%.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2015
  17. Vree

    Vree First time out of the vault

    Sep 29, 2015
    Have you tried it at long range yet? Perception does not directly increase the % to hit, rather it modifies the penalty for firing at a distance.
    So if you're holding a gun to a raider's head, the % is going to be the same regardless of PE and only the Small Guns skill and enemy Armor Class will matter. But if you try to snipe something from the weapon's maximum range, a 10 PE character will still be using almost the same Small Guns % where a 1 PE character's has been reduced to 0%.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2015
  18. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!
    Modder

    Mar 14, 2010
    There are some good finds on a few obscure bugs here, good work everyone. The pictures are helpful in locating specific problems.


    If you attack your fellow soldiers in a bunker, the game ends in a loss when you try to leave. I'll check into the security guys, but unless you intend to lose the game don't attack your own organization.


    Though it's mentioned a thousand times in this forum, and in my documentation, and elsewhere on the internet-- the game's autolevelling system sucks. When you talk to the Recruit Master, if you hear a "level-up" sound, this means the game has autolevelled all recruits, and they likely have lousy skill allocations and perk choices. Talk to the Recruit Master a second time to reset them to their base levels, so you can level them up intelligently in a way likely to be useful to your style of play.
     
  19. Vree

    Vree First time out of the vault

    Sep 29, 2015
    ^I'd mention that it is also a "bug" specific to version 1.27 - previous versions either had no auto-levelling at all (which is the version I used to play) or had full auto levelling and perk buying (but allegedly only for a limited number of recruits, based on who you took out and put back, so also far from ideal).
    But the whole "talk to recruits master a 2nd time to level down" business only exists in 1.27 as far as I know it.

    ---
    Thought I'd share the builds I've used

    Playthrough 1 used a classic sniper build, with slight adjustment based on my initial experience with the mod ( more EN, slightly less AG).

    ST 6 PE 10 EN 8 CH 2 IN 7 AG 8 LK 6
    Gifted, Fast Shot
    Small Guns, Energy Weapons
    (forgot what the last one was, probably 1st Aid or Sneak or lockpick, but never used it because 7 IN & Gifted doesn't allow for much focus outside 2 primary skills. A good choice would be Traps since it's useful to spot danger even for a character who leaves it on the starting level.)

    Playthrough 2 fell through - it involved experimenting with various high CH, support skill focus combinations - like the all-bases maxed IN/CH Traps/Locks/Doctor, or 6 CH shooter hybrid builds. But I had to concede and admit that this is not the mod where other recruits can carry on the fighting for you. Very few are good and even those often don't possess the EN to survive.

    For playthrough 3, this guy has worked very well so far. I wonder if he still will, after I leave Bunker Beta and face mutants.

    ST 10 PE 2 EN 10 CH 3 IN 10 AG 10 LK 2
    Gifted, Heavy Handed
    Unarmed, Sneak, Traps (pretty much all Unarmed focus this far though, and I plan to add more Sneak on later levels, Traps is filler.)
    I consider Heavy Handed optional - the base Unarmed damage the mod offers is already very high.
     
  20. mk-fg

    mk-fg First time out of the vault

    Aug 24, 2015
    Indeed, and don't think there's a way to get general back on your side for more missions either, which is a shame, as you could totally murder your way through FO2, getting all you need thru computers. Makes no sense here of course, unless story puts you on a longer leash (outside of BOS, at least).

    ---

    Few other nignags I've spotted so far:

    • Support for unarmed attacks is kinda patchy.

      I.e. punch dagger has its stats bumped, but not punch gun, tiger claws, piston fist and some others, which is a shame, given that latter are rare, seem to be available only on specific missions as a reward for exploration and should be easy to balance (i.e. can't be just bought at any point in the game).

      A bit more troubling is lack of updates to unarmed attacks unlocked by level/skill - i.e. you go from "Strong Punch/Kick" with something like 7-37(-ish) to "Hammer Punch + Jab + Snap Kick + Hip Kick" and all that martial arts goodness does up to 10 damage (i.e. origianl values) ;(
      And I think it's inevitable that you loose "Strong Punch" with level/skill, so that definitely seem to be an oversight.
    • Terminal in a hospital in Bunker Bravo has very interestng numbers on fluid balance.

      Something like 2.5-3.5 liters of water per hour and 14 to 30 liters per day, which I'm fairly sure is above lethal amount, should be more like 2-3l/day.
      Of course, it's a fallout universe, and maybe flakey data / joke, but looks kinda weird without any kind of setup, and inconsistent with the world (where you don't see people lugging huge water tanks on their backs and all the infrastructure for amounts that insane).
    • Mission-4 (Macomb) - tech manual from library can't be used anywhere?

      Maybe I just didn't find where it should be used (description suggests elders at the bunker, but in B2, don't think any are interactable), or maybe there was a bug where it's supposed to be taken away from you after mission.
      If neither is true, maybe just assigning better value to it would make more sense?
    • Mission-5 (Prioria) - Fusion Batts weren't taken away after mission, looks like a bug.

      Had 3 of these, iirc elder gives one more (at least in the original) if you don't let many tribals die, so I think I had 4 in previous (unmodded, years ago) playthrough, maybe trigger didn't work with just 3 even then?
    • Recruit "Vindi" (one of the Big Guns) has story about her being Rocket Launcher operator, but she has AG=7 and RL needs 8 AP, so she can't actually operate it.
    • Car in Quincy is fun, but completely removes all challenge when used in CTB - deathclaws can't catch-up, ditto for melee grunts, while small-arms shooters are no more than nuisance.

      Iirc car wasn't available there before?

      Did it for fun and eventually failed objectives (when shooting near some building, didn't check these yet), but cleared the streets and ghoul-town easily within few mins and only scratches to car with just 3 shooters (2 rifles + LMG) inside.
    • Recruit pool so far looks half "small guns + melee + throwing" with very minor variations, kinda boring.

      Makes sense in the context of the military, I guess, while original ones felt more like "scraping the bottom of the barrel" and were more fun to pick, despite their shortcomings.
      Also current way is probably for the better if you're loosing a lot of them, more in line with deadlier combat.

      It's bad however if you savescum on deaths and finding "stable team progression" more enjoyable aspect of the game than xcom-like (old xcom) "recruits first, as first 2-4 won't make it past first step out of the door" interchangeability, and here there isn't a geoscape, resources or all the other stuff to worry about too, only team and tactical aspect, where I think such pool diminishes the former.