It has become a community tradition for people to take their shot at Fallout damage calculation, to fix that AP ammo issue, among other things. So here is my attempt...

I had a mod called EcCo that I was working on around 2012-2015. Because I decided I want more "realism" and also to have player choose between ammo types instead of defaulting on one, I somehow settled on YAAM formula. The way it addressed armor in terms of "armor defense class" vs bullet penetration clicked for me, because I was a gun/ammo nerd at that time, also playing and modding STALKER. But I understood that I needed to make some changes to armor and ammo values, to make them work with YAAM. I remember using some spreadsheet for calculations, most likely based on the one included in YAAM itself.

Then gradually the development of the mod grinded to a halt, but I continued to receive a lot of criticism, some of that related to damage being either to high or too low in different situations. I had some spreadsheets, but I guess they weren't informative enough after all the edits I've made across weapon, ammo, armor and critter prototypes. So I've had a task on my TODO list of exporting all this data from proto into some kind of table format that I can then analyze...

This task had to wait 8 years. Recently, I've started to work on the mod again, and I always remembered I need to take a close look at the damage output, to make sure it actually works as I intended originally. I was about to start writing a script to read and export prototypes, when I stumbled upon this feature already present in Mr.Stalin's Proto Manager. So I took that and started building my Ultimate Damage Spreadsheet™.

Couple of days of work fiddling with numbers revealed a few issues:

What's on the market

Naturally, if I want to switch formula again I need to study what options already exist. You already know what they are, so here's my take on them:

Numerical approach

So, inspired by FO2 Tweaks script, I got to work. I took example damage mod included in recent Modderspack as a starting point - repeating vanilla formula 1-to-1 in script. Then, I implemented YAAM formula there, with a few changes (probability rounding and critical bursts nerf). It all worked well enough, sfall is amazing!

But I thought now that I can do whatever formula I wish, I need to at least take a shot at it. I can always default back to my modified YAAM if I fail. So I decided to take a step back, and try to fully understand how original formula behaved, what exactly was wrong with it and if it's possible to improve it with minimal changes.

But I needed a better visualization tool for that. So I spent 2 days freshening up my JS skills and came up with this damage calculator tool. It really helped to confirm what I already saw in spreadsheet. You can try to apply physics and realism to FO damage formula however you want, but it all comes down to numbers:

Vanilla+

I came up with an idea. Let's take vanilla formula as is, but introduce a few changes from other formulas:

At this point, I feel pretty good about this formula. I'm leaning towards version with multiplication and already adjusted stats of my mod to use it. Will of course need playtesting.

How I got to this

I had a mod called EcCo that I was working on around 2012-2015. Because I decided I want more "realism" and also to have player choose between ammo types instead of defaulting on one, I somehow settled on YAAM formula. The way it addressed armor in terms of "armor defense class" vs bullet penetration clicked for me, because I was a gun/ammo nerd at that time, also playing and modding STALKER. But I understood that I needed to make some changes to armor and ammo values, to make them work with YAAM. I remember using some spreadsheet for calculations, most likely based on the one included in YAAM itself.

Then gradually the development of the mod grinded to a halt, but I continued to receive a lot of criticism, some of that related to damage being either to high or too low in different situations. I had some spreadsheets, but I guess they weren't informative enough after all the edits I've made across weapon, ammo, armor and critter prototypes. So I've had a task on my TODO list of exporting all this data from proto into some kind of table format that I can then analyze...

This task had to wait 8 years. Recently, I've started to work on the mod again, and I always remembered I need to take a close look at the damage output, to make sure it actually works as I intended originally. I was about to start writing a script to read and export prototypes, when I stumbled upon this feature already present in Mr.Stalin's Proto Manager. So I took that and started building my Ultimate Damage Spreadsheet™.

Couple of days of work fiddling with numbers revealed a few issues:

- Some weapons do very little damage to end-game armor. To counter this I can either buff ammo DT value or nerf armor DT values even further, which require to go even further into "custom values" territory. Not ideal.

- Ammo with high DT ignore most of the game's armor completely, like it's not there.
- The number of combinations of different formulas, weapon stats, ammo stats, made it very cumbersome to work on damage calculations in a spreadsheet format. I needed something better.

What's on the market

Naturally, if I want to switch formula again I need to study what options already exist. You already know what they are, so here's my take on them:

**Glovz:**- Seems to be the most popular nowadays.

- An enigma. Written by a mad man.
- Designed around vanilla stats. Not flexible enough for my taste.
- Seems to do it's job of making AP ammo not suck.
- Has wild damage increases against early armor, even for AP, which I find questionable.
- JHP doesn't seem to have much benefit. It makes AP always a better choice, if you can afford it.

- Easy to grasp (at least for me).
- Makes sense in terms of bullets penetrating certain types of armor.
- Doesn't work well with vanilla armor stats. They need tweaks, ammo changes are not sufficient.
- Ammo stats probably need tweaks as well (hence why EcCo 0.6 had completely custom stats).
- Does a good job of making both AP and JHP ammo viable, depending on target.
- AP ammo is "too good" against early armor, there's no damage reduction, like it's not there. Maybe it's "realistic", but questionable for game.
- All ammo, AP or JHP equally suck against high-DT target. You'd have to reduce max DT quite a lot across the entire game to make it work.

- Fully script-based, unlike all above (uses sFall hook scripts).

- Ties everything to a single ammo parameter (cannot set dmg div/mod separately from DR Adjust).
- Doesn't really achieve it's stated goal (based on my calculations): AP ammo sucks less but still sucks.
- Has some novel ideas like "probability rounding" and every bullet in burst "rolling" their own critical.

Numerical approach

So, inspired by FO2 Tweaks script, I got to work. I took example damage mod included in recent Modderspack as a starting point - repeating vanilla formula 1-to-1 in script. Then, I implemented YAAM formula there, with a few changes (probability rounding and critical bursts nerf). It all worked well enough, sfall is amazing!

But I thought now that I can do whatever formula I wish, I need to at least take a shot at it. I can always default back to my modified YAAM if I fail. So I decided to take a step back, and try to fully understand how original formula behaved, what exactly was wrong with it and if it's possible to improve it with minimal changes.

But I needed a better visualization tool for that. So I spent 2 days freshening up my JS skills and came up with this damage calculator tool. It really helped to confirm what I already saw in spreadsheet. You can try to apply physics and realism to FO damage formula however you want, but it all comes down to numbers:

- DT "soaks" damage and disproportionally affects lower-damage weapons, such as most early guns, miniguns, etc. I think about it as "how much energy can armor itself take without damaging the wearer". It's not just penetration.
- DR "scales" damage and disproportionally affects higher-damage weapons. I think about it as "deflection" of bullets, laser rays, etc.
- Ammo DR Adjust affects high-dmg weapons, because it only deals with DR. My guess is this was (as most other things) done intentionally by devs, otherwise they wouldn't bothered with 2 armor parameters instead of one. But maybe they didn't have time to fully dig into implications of this for all weapons.
- DMG mod/div is just a multiplier. BUT, because it changes the damage curve differently than DR Adjust, you can change both in relation to each other to not just scale damage but change the steepness of the damage curve! Also because DT is applied after this multiplier, JHP ammo in vanilla will overpower armor DT easily and AP can't compete with that, especially for low-dmg guns.
.__THIS__is the reason why vanilla AP ammo suck

Vanilla+

I came up with an idea. Let's take vanilla formula as is, but introduce a few changes from other formulas:

- Apply DT before ammo damage multiplier, not after.
- Reduce DT along with DR with ammo's DR Adjust parameter. There are two versions of this:
- Use addition based on DR Adjust and some fixed multiplier, like 1/10. So a DR Adjust = -20 means -2 DT. If DR Adjust is positive, separate multiplier can be used, like 0 to not ever increase DT.
- Use multiplication. Basically -20 DR will also reduce DT by 20%. This will work for low DT values as well, if we do all calculation in floats and round at the very end. Like (1), separate multiplier for positive direction can be used, to make high-DR ammo curve steeper.

- (1) allowed to use high dmg mult/div ratio without ammo overpowering ammo DT. This effectively turns JHP ammo damage curve downwards against later armors.
- DR Adjust and DMG ratio still balance each other to some extent, but allow to change steepness of the curve (high DR adjust -> steeper damage falloff). This allows having higher starting damage for early-game calibers that falls off quickly, but more straight curve for mid-game ammo types.

- Ammo with high DR Adjust value now does much better job at penetrating armor, especially with base damage.
**This effectively solves "AP sucks" issue.** - 2 variations of formula have different implications:
- With addition, you get behavior similar to YAAM. AP ammo will have a fairly flat damage (rip through early armor) up until certain point (based on their DR Adjust), then fall. But not as quickly as with YAAM (because unlike YAAM, DR is always affected).
- With multiplication, you get more "vanilla" (or Glovz-like) behavior - the curve is more or less uniform and overall not as steep. Armor will always give you some protection, even against AP ammo. But AP ammo will still dominate against JHP. Against top armor this option gives better damage.

- Ammo with dmg ratio of 1 and DR Adjust >= 0 will behave
**exactly**like vanilla.

At this point, I feel pretty good about this formula. I'm leaning towards version with multiplication and already adjusted stats of my mod to use it. Will of course need playtesting.

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