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 Post subject: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 11:18 am 
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I've only played as a Fighter so far, so I may post an update in this thread later on.

First of all, it's awesome. Probably the best QFG combat system. :D

Swing and thrusts : not much change there. Thrusts really don't do much damage, but the speed can come in handy at times - for example, they can be used to cancel an enemy's attack.

Dodging : I usually prefer stepping/jumping back or parrying and I only use dodging if I really have to. I find dodging to be mostly useful against Ghouls and against Khaveen. Note that some attacks can only be dodged in a specific direction (left or right).

Ducking : I only use this if I intend to do a Rising Slash.

Jumping : I mostly use Skull-Splitter instead. I do use pure jumping when a Ghoul casts Hellfire.

Jumping back : I use this a lot, mostly I'm very fond of the Leaping Lunge.

Blocking : I use it fairly often, usually with the appropriate counterattack.

Parrying : Same as above. Note that there is a difference between blocking and parrying - some attacks can be blocked but not parried, and you have to parry an attack before doing the Sword Dance.

Inverse swings, Overhead slashes : I use these as much of possible, of course. An successful overhead slash will pretty much always knock back an opponent.


Counterattacks : Very effective against Uhura. Quite good against brigands. Occasionally useful against Ghouls and Terrorsauruses.

Rising slash : One good thing about it is that I've never seen an enemy dodge or parry it. Not to mention that the SP cost is very small. I often use it against brigands and Terrorsauruses. I also use it a lot when fighting the Pizza Elemental.

Leaping Lunge : I use it a lot against pretty much everything (well, maybe a bit less against Ghouls, and a lot less against the Pizza Elemental). A well-trained should be able to trigger the Leaping Lunge very often. Extremely useful against Scorpions.

Skull-splitter : Difficult to do, but still quite damaging. I use it as much as possible against the Terrorsaurus. Also good against the Earth Elemental (if you can pull it off).

Backflip : Requires insanely high Agility (180, I think), but very much worth it. I try to use it whenever I'm knocked back.

Lock Blades : As far as I know, you can only do this against Walid. I only do it for fun - there are better and safer ways to deal damage.

Sword Dance : Useful against the Palace Guards if you're running low on SP. Very difficult to do against Khaveen (and even if you manage to do one and Khaveen doesn't dodge it, it won't do all that much damage).

Cannonball Strike : Oh wow, neat animation. Devastating against the Palace Guards. It can also be used against Khaveen, although it's not as effective and you'll probably need a bit of practice to get it right.

Quadruple Slash : Quite good against the Palace Guards. Devastating against Khaveen, especially once you've got him cornered.



Combat Saurus : This feature is totally awesome! Anyway, the combat saurus can has a nasty bite (the equivalent of a thrust), a nasty kick (the equivalent of a swing), and a very nasty tail sweep. Oh, and it can do some headbutting, too; which is good for keeping the Terrorsaurus off balance. It's very useful against brigands and even Terrorsauruses (although it may take a bit of practice to get it right when fighting the latter). You can also use it against Ghouls, but you'll probably get knocked off pretty quickly.


Various comments on the enemies (the stats were mostly taken from the Warrior's Diary) :

Brigand

Max HP : 90
Defense : 3

Swing : 9
Slash : 8
Dagger Toss (ranged attack) : 10

Counterattack
Evasive sidestep
Parry


Well, I thought the brigands were a lot tougher than in the original version! Surprisingly difficult at the beginning of the game. Of course, once you're properly trained, you will have very little trouble taking them down. The daggers can be dodged or blocked.


Jackalman

Max HP : 70
Defense : 3

Slash : 9
Evasive jump upwards


Did I mention I love the fact that they now attack all at once? Anyway, they're the weakest enemies in the game by far - the only difficulty is there can be up to five Jackalmen in a pack. When there are 2-3, you can easily use kicks to calm them down. When there are 4-5, you'll have to take care of the Jackalman in front of you as quickly as possible.


Desert Scorpion

Max HP : 170
Defense : 6

Mid slash right : 10
Low slash right : 9
Mid slash left : 10
Low slash left : 9
Twin Pincer (the scorpion uses both pincers to attack) : 15
Countergrip (basically, the scorpion blocks one of your attacks by snatching your right arm with its right pincer, and uses its left pincer to attack you. There's not much you can do about this.) : 6
Death sting : Fatal if you've not taken a poison cure pill. Otherwise, you'll take no damage. A death sting cancels the effect of a poison cure pill, though. So if you take a poison cure pill before the start of the fight and you get stung once, you can keep fighting. If you get stung once more, you're dead. Interesting fact : it apparently doesn't matter how much time passes between the moment you take a poison cure pill and the moment you get stung; taking a poison cure pill will always cancel the next poison sting.

Counterattack
Pincer block
Anticipate (enemies only "anticipate" when you're not in melee range. You'll see them preparing an attack. If you get in melee range while they're still "anticipating", they will immediately try to hit you.)


Scorpions can take a lot of hits, but they're pretty slow. Leaping lunge works wonderfully here. The low slashes can be avoided by jumping (or better, by using Skull-splitter). The "Mid slash right" can be blocked with your shield.


Uhura

Max HP : 240
Defense : 2

Mid stab : 8
High stab : 9
Low stab : 7
Defensive kip-up (Uhura often, though not always, uses this if you're in melee range when she gets up. This attack cannot be avoided and will always throw you back.) : 6
Whirling Spear : 16

Counterattack
Shield block
Evasive sidestep
Counters while getting up


Note that Uhura's attacks only affect your SP points. The battle ends when either one of you runs out of SP points. Other than that, Uhura's quite tough at the start of the game. After a bit of training, you'll be able to beat her with very little SP lost (thanks to the counterattacks and the fact that your Stamina Points regenerate during battle).


Terrorsaurus

Max HP : 170
Defense : 5

Bite : 11
Kick : 12
Tail Sweep : 13
Headbutt (this attack will always throw you back, and I believe backflip doesn't even work here. The Terrorsaurus cannot use this attack if you're in melee range.) : 14
Maul (The Terrorsaurus jumps towards you, grabs you with its mouth, and starts chomping on you. Once again, it cannot use this attack when you're in melee range.) : 7+7+7+7+7

Evasive leap


A great battle :). The bite can be blocked, the kick can be dodged by ducking, and the tail sweep can be dodged by jumping or using Skull-Splitter. I've noticed that the Terrorsaurus often uses Kick after getting up. Oh, and watch out for Headbutt and Maul.


Alleyway Brigand

I don't know much about his stats. All I can tell you is that the magic user and hybrid versions use Zap and Flame Dart. His Flame Dart attacks do 25 base damage, and can be both blocked and dodged. His Zap spell is the same as the Ghoul's, apparently. The Alleyway Brigand is absolutely no match for a well-trained fighter.


Ghoul

Max HP : 145
Defense : 4

Scratch right : 8
Swipe : 10
Scratch left : 7
Grab and bite : 14
Acid breath : 14
Loogie (Acid pool) : 12
Boom : 20
Hellfire : 25
First Aid : The Ghoul flashes yellow when casting this spell. It heals 15 HP.

Drain : The Ghoul flashes red when casting this spell. This temporary boost makes the Ghoul's melee attack HP-draining (so, when this boost is active, the Ghoul will recover HP whenever hitting you with a melee attack).
Zap : The Ghoul flashes green when casting this spell. The Ghoul's next successful melee attack will do more damage.
Wall : A magical shield flashes in front of the Ghoul when it casts this spell. This spell will block your next two attacks (even special attacks like Leaping Lunge will be blocked).
Focus : The Ghoul flashes purple when casting this spell. The Ghoul's MP bar turns purple and starts regenerating pretty fast. This spell lasts until you successfully hit the Ghoul, or until you escape, or until you die.
Boost : The Ghoul flashes blue when casting this spell. It gives the Ghoul a speed boost. I believe this means that the delay between the Ghoul's attacks/spells will be shortened. This boost seems to be temporary.
Fade : The Ghoul turns translucent and becomes invulnerable to attacks. This spell lasts a very short time. The Ghoul cannot attack while in this state. The Ghoul often uses this spell after getting up. It also often uses Loogie immediately after the end of the Fade spell.
Phase : Teleportation.

The Ghoul's melee attacks always reduce both your HP and your SP. They also always restore some MP to the Ghoul. If your SP bar hits zero, you die.


Before I met the Pizza Elemental, I thought this was the most impressive fight in the game (along with Khaveen). Amazingly well-done. A few notes on the Ghoul's offensive abilities/spells :

-Acid Breath can be both blocked and dodged.
-The Ghoul uses Loogie to prevent you from getting in melee range. Loogie will not damage you if you have the special boots equipped. The aforementioned boots can be bought at the Fighters Plaza. However, too many Loogie spells will severely damage your boots and make them useless until you have them repaired. If you do not have the protective boots, the acid pool will damage you and throw you back every time you step on it. You can, however, use backflip when thrown back by the acid pool. Also note that the Ghoul will not use Loogie if it has you cornered.
-Boom will remind you of the QFG5's Boom spell. The Ghoul throws a skull on the ground. If you step on it, it explodes and you take damage. The skull detonates on its own after a short while. Watch out, the skull may land right beneath your feet. If you are still standing on it when it blow up, you will also take damage.
-Hellfire is a very powerful ranged attack (especially since the Ghoul can cast it several times in a row). As far as I know, this attack can only be avoided by jumping (and the timing needs to be quite good, too). If you do get hit, you will be thrown back.


Earth Elemental

Max HP : 300
Defense : 8
Punch left : 12
Punch right : 14
Double punch : 10+14
Slam (the Earth Elemental picks you up and throws you against a wall, or against the ground. Painful, but doesn't really throw you back.) : 22
Regenerate : The Earth Elemental flashes yellow and recovers 4 HP.

Shockwave : The Earth Elemental hits the ground with his fist. This attack does no damage but stuns you, meaning that you will not be able to do anything until the Earth Elemental hits you. This attack can be avoiding by jumping (with good timing) or by using Skull-splitter. Note that Shockwave can stun you even if you're not in melee range.
Merge (Teleportation)

The Earth Elemental cannot block or dodge any attacks.


You will have to fight the Earth Elemental [at least] three times before you can beat it. It becomes more dangerous with each battle.


Griffin

Max HP : 420
Defense : 4

Double Claw (only the Griffin is on the ground) : 9+9
Wing Repel (the Griffin will often use this after Wing block. Much like Uhura's defensive kip-up, it cannot be avoided and will always throw you back.) : 5
Claw dash left (the Griffin charges you and uses its left claw to attack) : 12
Scratch left : 11
Scratch right : 11
Claw dash right (the Griffin charges you and uses its right claw to attack) : 12
Bodycheck (this is a lot like the Terrorsaurus's headbutt) : 16
Abduction (the Griffin picks you up, starts flying, then abruptly drops you) : 23

Wing block


One of my favorite battles. Don't bother trying to block the Griffin's attacks - the most effective way of avoiding the Griffin's attacks seems to be stepping back and jumping back.


Pizza Elemental

Max HP : 100
Defense : ??? (all attacks do 1 damage)

Punch left : 11
Punch right : 11
Tentacle Strike : 30 (technically, I believe Tentacle Strike does 5 damage 6 times. One interesting fact about it is that armor does not reduce the damage inflicted by Tentacle Strike. It will always do 30 damage no matter what.)
Falling Pizza : 12
Tongue Strike : Fatal if you let yourself be digested. If you successfully make the Pizza Elemental spit you out, you will take no damage.

Pizza Summon : The Pizza Elemental attempts to regain HP by eating a pizza. The regeneration attempt cannot be interrupted. The amount of HP restored can be 100, 80, 60, 40, 20, or 0, depending on how many times you forced the Pizza Elemental to spit you back out (thanks for the info, Erpy).


Most impressive battle in the game, period. You've truly got to experience it to believe it. Oh, and it's also the longest battle in the game (and arguably the hardest, too).

A few tips for Fighters:

-You should have your Strength, vitality, and Agility at 200 for your first tries. After a lot of training you won't be needing very high stats anymore, but it's best to have maxed out stats at first.
-I would advise leaving your Chainmail in your storage chest before fighting the Pizza Elemental, as your SP will regenerate much faster during the battle, and this can really save your life.
-Needless to say, make sure you're fully healed before starting the battle.
-You've got a few spare seconds at the start of the battle - it takes the Pizza Elemental a bit of time to start its Rain of Pizzas spell, so you can use these spare seconds to attack it with a triple slash.
-You can dodge his punches by ducking. Do so and be sure to use as many Rising Slashes as possible. You can also attempt a thrust immediately after a Rising Slash, but it's quite risky.
-Falling Pizzas rarely land on your head when you're in melee range.
-Step back one or two spaces whenever the tentacles start to shake, then get back in melee range. If the tentacles start shaking again, step back again, and so on.
-You will be warned when the Pizza Elemental feels like doing a Tongue Strike : The Pizza Elemental will stop punching you and will only attempt Tentacle Strikes as melee attacks. The falling pizza pattern will also no longer be random, and you'll notice that the space that's two steps away from the Pizza Elemental is temporarily unaffected by the falling pizzas. Whenever this happens, step on the aforementioned space. Let the elemental grab you with its tongue, then do a thrust as soon as you're in its mouth. It will spit you back out.
-After you've done enough damage, the Pizza Elemental will attempt to eat a pizza (and if you've successfully forced the Pizza Elemental to spit you out 5 times, it won't restore any HP). You should easily be able to eat the Pizza Elemental 4-5 times while he's busy eating (do a triple slash, then a swing, then an inverse swing). The amount of health regenerated by the Pizza Summon spell seems to increase by 20 with every attempt from the Pizza Elemental, though. That means you'll have to be sure to force the Pizza Elemental to spit you out whenever it wants to do a Tongue Strike. Note that after a while, it will probably stop using the Pizza Summon and Tongue Strike abilities, so that'll be one less problem for you to worry about.
-That's about it, really. Keep practicing, and eventually it'll go down.


Walid

Max HP : 250
Defense : 2

Swing : 13
Slash : 15
Reverse kick (this happens when you lose a Blade Lock) : 19

Counterattack
Lock Blades
Parry
Evasive jump back


A very fun fight, albeit kinda easy - a trained Fighter will have no trouble taking him down with a few Leaping Lunges and some regular attacks. Like I said before, the Blade Lock feature is fun to mess around with but it isn't all that useful.


Rakeesh

Max HP : 220
Defense : 4
Swing : 11
Slash : 13
Sweeper (Rakeesh roars, stands on his hind legs, then lowers his sword) : 20
Ankh Slash : 13+8+13

Counterattack
Dodge
Parry
Feint
Anticipate
Honor Shield


Rakeesh will have to enhance his sword with magical power before attempting an Ankh Slash. You'll know he's doing this when his sword is glowing blue. Ankh Slashes can be dodged by stepping aside or by jumping back. As long as you can dodge his Ankh Slashes, Rakeesh isn't too difficult to beat. I find Leaping Lunge and Backflip to be especially useful here. Also note that Rakeesh cannot enhance his sword while you're in melee range.


Palace Guard

Max HP : 90
Defense : 5

Swing : 12
Slash : 10

Counterattack
Parry
Evasive sidestep


The problem here is that you're fighting 3 Palace Guards at once, and they sure are a lot better than Jackalmen. Cannonball Strike can help you a lot during the first part of the fight. When there are only 2 guards left, the guards become a lot more careful and you will have trouble preventing the guard on your right from attacking you. You can still attempt a few regular attacks and kicks, but it's a lot more difficult. Leaping Lunge becomes extremely useful here. When there's only one guard left, finish him off however you want. Since you're probably running low on SP, Sword Dance can be a good way to end the fight.


Khaveen

Max HP : 240
Defense : 8

Stab : 11
Swing : 10
Inverse swing : 10
Overhead slash : 11
Upwards slash (the fourth part of a Quadruple slash) : 16
Leaping lunge : 20
Rising slash : 11
Skull-splitter : 25
Sword dance : 19
Side-slash (this attack resembles your own Cannonball Strike, somewhat) : 30
Counter-slash : 12 or 13
Evasive sidestep
Block/Parry
Evasive jump
Duck
Safe landing (when he's thrown back, Khaveen will often land safely on his feet instead of falling to the ground. Khaveen cannot use this ability if you have him cornered.)
Anticipate


The real fight only starts when Khaveen gets his sword back. Before that, he's extremely hard to hit, so just do your best to block or parry as many of his attacks as possible. Try not to lose space before the real fight starts.

When Khaveen picks up his sword, the epic battle begins. Your objective here is to get him cornered. Basically, you'll just have to keep using Triple slashes/Quadruple slashes, Leaping lunges, and Backflips. Oh, and his Sword dance ability can be dodged by jumping upwards or using Skull-splitter. You may actually find dodging to be somewhat useful here, especially if you accidentally get yourself cornered. Once you've got Khaveen cornered, just keep attacking him with Triple slashes and/or Quadruple slashes. He'll keep falling to the ground, since he can no longer use his Safe landing ability. Unfortunately for him, he seems to be quite vulnerable when he gets up, so you'll be able to hit him a lot. Get ready to jump back if needed, though, as he'll occasionally manage to retaliate.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 12:02 pm 
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I haven't read the whole post (due to Spoilers), but I would add that the Ghoul can fall on his own Boom spell, which is hilarious.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 2:54 pm 
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Hey, nice in-depth review of all the combat system and monsters. Where were you when we were writing the copy for the game manual? :D

There are two additional things you can do in combat, which I'm surprised nobody seems to have mentioned yet. One is exclusive to the Jackalmen pack battle and the other involves the Alley Brigand.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 4:09 pm 
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Very impressive. These are almost exactly similar to how I would describe the enemies. Battle is most fun as a fighter, from my point of view, btw. With wizards, it's usually about avoiding or limiting damage as you wait for an opening to squeeze a devastating spell in and with thieves it's mostly about avoiding close combat whenever possible and using thrown daggers and a few plunges when in melee battle.

I personally prefer to sidestep the griffin's claw dashes, btw, while ducking his aerial melee moves. (and countering them of course)

It seems you're pretty good at it too, seeing you wrote down the hard hp-values of the monsters. You'll be happy to know both secret battles now have their own diary page in version 1.1.

I love reading stuff like this too...it makes me happy to see people noticing all the effort that went into the battle script.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 5:35 pm 
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Thanks everyone! :D

AGD2 - I didn't list the Kick, if that's what you mean, but I did mention it while describing the Jackalmen and Palace Guards battles. I'm not sure what I could have missed regarding the alley brigand. I guess I'll have to fight him some more. ;)

Erpy - I've always played all of the QFGs on Hard (well, except QFG1EGA, which didn't have any Hard mode if I remember correctly), so I did the same for QFG2VGA. About Merv : I find his attacks to be quite tough to dodge, that's why I mostly jump back. Losing ground isn't that big a deal against the Griffin anyway, since he's so easily thrown back when he's flying. Oh, and thank you very much for updating the diary.

About the Ghoul : thanks for the info, I didn't know it could step on its own magical skull. I'll have to try to make him do this.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 5:58 pm 
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Sharpshooter wrote:
Defensive kip-up (Uhura often, though not always, uses this if you're in melee range when she gets up. This attack cannot be avoided and will always throw you back.) : 6

For the following comments keep in mind I play the game at medium difficulty or lower. I have noticed that Uhura only does this move when she falls to the right from the player's point of view. I also believe you can at least dodge this, if not block it.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 6:04 pm 
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You can dodge it in the sense that if you are not right in front of Uhura when she gets up, you will not be thrown back. It does only happen when she falls to the right (but not always), and you can use backflip on her.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 6:14 pm 
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You can't really block the kip-up hit, but if you're blocking or dodging at the point where she'd pull it off, she'll skip past it. She'll only use it if she's certain to smack you in the face. And yeah, she can only do it when getting up after being knocked on her back. (not on her side) Her kip-up is a pretty good way to practice the backflip, since you know almost exactly when the hit's gonna land. I once beat Uhura doing nothing but backflips/lunges. My luck skyrocketed as a result.

If AGD2 is referring to what I think he's referring to with the the alleyway brigand (who has a name, btw), you're the wrong class for it. I might be mistaken.

I think for jack/guard battles, AGD2 was referring to a defensive action only a fighter can do.

And yeah, it's possible for a ghoul to be in range of the explosions of his own boom skulls. If he dies because of this, you get a different battle ending message. It's rare though. Yeah, what boost basically does is eliminate the "waiting time" between actions and also speeds up his claw strikes a bit. He usually uses it at the start of those powering-up sessions. What you didn't mention is that his focus skill costs him HP. If he repeatedly has to cast it, he'll do more damage to himself than you could do with your sword.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 6:45 pm 
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Thanks for the clarifications, Erpy. Looks like we used the same technique to increase our luck. I love beating Uhura with nothing but backflips. ;)

I didn't know the Focus spell could severely damage the Ghoul's HP. I'll pay more attention next time.

As for that defensive action, I guess I haven't found it yet. I'll keep looking.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 7:32 pm 
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Quote:
If AGD2 is referring to what I think he's referring to with the the alleyway brigand (who has a name, btw), you're the wrong class for it. I might be mistaken.

I think for jack/guard battles, AGD2 was referring to a defensive action only a fighter can do.


Yep, I'm referring to the same things on both counts.

I personally find the cannonball strike to be extremely effective sometimes against the Raseirian guards and Khaveen. If you're aware of the fact that you can actually hold the key down in advance, then it can make it a bit easier to preempt your opponent's move and execute the strike at the right time. Sometimes you can get into a situation where you and Khaveen trade multiple cannonball strikes/lunges, which is pretty satisfying whenever you hit him.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2008 7:50 am 
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Yeah, the cannonball strike is seriously hax against Khaveen. It's really all you need; quad-slashes are just extra pain. You just need to start jamming on the "special" key repeatedly when you see Khaveen leave his feet for a side-slash, skull-splitter, or leaping lunge (the guy loves to use leaping lunge, much as many players do).

Something important about the scorpion you missed, Sharpshooter (but it's mentioned in the unofficial FAQ, so it's not an unrevealed secret): as the warrior diary says, scorps follow a set pattern when attacking. Basically they cycle through an unchanging sequence of five or six (I, ah, never actually counted) claw attacks over and over again, with blocks, tail-wiggles, and anticipates thrown in at random or as need arises. (The actual sequence is different for each scorpion.) If you watch a scorpion carefully and learn part of the pattern, you can predict exactly where it will aim its next claw attack, making blocks and skull-splitters trivially easy to execute. If you learn the entire pattern, the fight becomes an exercise in hilarity.

The defensive action you can do during jackpack fights (if it's the action I'm thinking of) isn't really hugely different than you do elsewhere, just... ehr, why don't I keep my mouth shut. But I'm sure a bunch of people have already seen it, and just not thought to mention it.
ETA: Oh, right, and I'm pretty sure I remember it happening during the Raseir guard fight.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2008 7:56 am 
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I still have trouble doing the backflip, but I love the sound effects :lol

I haven't pulled off the skull splitter or rising slash yet. And I didn't bother with the Uhura training anymore to try them after my stats reached 200, so I doubt I'll ever will.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 9:20 am 
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Prio wrote:
Yeah, the cannonball strike is seriously hax against Khaveen. It's really all you need; quad-slashes are just extra pain. You just need to start jamming on the "special" key repeatedly when you see Khaveen leave his feet for a side-slash, skull-splitter, or leaping lunge (the guy loves to use leaping lunge, much as many players do).

Something important about the scorpion you missed, Sharpshooter (but it's mentioned in the unofficial FAQ, so it's not an unrevealed secret): as the warrior diary says, scorps follow a set pattern when attacking. Basically they cycle through an unchanging sequence of five or six (I, ah, never actually counted) claw attacks over and over again, with blocks, tail-wiggles, and anticipates thrown in at random or as need arises. (The actual sequence is different for each scorpion.) If you watch a scorpion carefully and learn part of the pattern, you can predict exactly where it will aim its next claw attack, making blocks and skull-splitters trivially easy to execute. If you learn the entire pattern, the fight becomes an exercise in hilarity.

The defensive action you can do during jackpack fights (if it's the action I'm thinking of) isn't really hugely different than you do elsewhere, just... ehr, why don't I keep my mouth shut. But I'm sure a bunch of people have already seen it, and just not thought to mention it.
ETA: Oh, right, and I'm pretty sure I remember it happening during the Raseir guard fight.


Well, my reflexes probably aren't as sharp as yours when using Cannonball Strike, so I tend to stick to my Leaping Lunge/Quadruple Slash technique. It's pretty effective too, after all - with a bit of practice, you can beat Khaveen with a lot of HP left. I do find Cannonball Strike to be somewhat useful *before* you get Khaveen cornered. After that, I don't find it so useful anymore.

Regarding the Scorpion, I did notice its pattern was somewhat predictable, but I was too lazy to learn the whole pattern ;) . Congratulations for figuring out the Scorpion's pattern, though. I'm sure it can help quite a bit at the start of the game, when your stats aren't very high.

About the defensive move... I noticed that you can block/parry side attacks, and you can also jump forward when dodging a side attack. Were you referring to any of these?


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 10:56 am 
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Sharpshooter wrote:
About the defensive move... I noticed that you can block/parry side attacks


Getting warmer...


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 3:24 pm 
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Whoops. Has it been that long since my last post? Yes, yes it has. Apologies for not replying, AGD2, I've been super-busy as usual (that, and the fact that joining a dozen gaming communities is not that good for one's free time).

Anyway, thanks for your hint, hopefully I'll be able to replay the latest version this weekend and add a few things (like the stats for Broomie... I mean Sweeping Sir James. :p ). Oh, and I haven't found the secret move yet, although I did find that you can parry attacks from behind.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 3:58 pm 
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I never really saw it as a secret move, especially if you use the co-pilot. But it's possible, with good timing, to deflect multiple blows from multiple directions at once, using your shield and sword. (by simply pressing parry while you're still in your blocking animation for instance) Behind the scenes, we called this move the "Banderas Block". Easy to trigger in the palace guards battle where the flank guards often approach you in tandem. Press 4 and then 6 immediately after. The hero will stick out both arms and block both flank attacks at the same time. Main attraction factor is that if you can reliably pull it off, you'll get to feel badass.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 4:05 pm 
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Well, err, thanks. I feel immensely stupid. I thought it would be some kind of super-attack that could only be triggered after parrying and that would allow you to hit multiple enemies at once, or something like that. I can have a wild imagination at times. :p


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 6:42 pm 
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Two of your attacks can do just that actually.

The cannonball slash can knock opponents out if the hero lands on them during the jumping-back part of the animation. (however, in order for that to happen, the flanking guard has to be on a different row than you and he must be standing still at that, meaning the occurance is VERY rare)

The sword dance attack can send three guards to the floor in one swipe, but again, the occurance is rare because you have to be parrying a swing from the front guard while the other two guards are in melee range, but not attacking. (since if the guard on your right flank is attacking, pressing the parry key often makes you guard your right flank) Again, the main reward for pulling it off (I did so succesfully a few times myself) is feeling like a bad mommy. It's probably the only thing that beats seeing Sweeping Sir James or the ghoul blow themselves up.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 7:03 pm 
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...

You guys are absolutely awesome. Now wonder QFG2VGA took so long to be released. :D

*adds to my to-do list*


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 8:41 pm 
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Erpy, now I simply have to praise you for the combat system. It was obviously a huge improvement to begin with but I always played the game on easy so I missed out on many things. Then the pizza elemental came up. Then I tried battle mode on various difficulties. And all throughout and even now, I read your and others' posts about the battles and it boggles my mind on all the possibilities and various details that were designed.

Really, my hat's off to you on this. This is also praise because I never really saw anything wrong with the original combat system. It was fun and served its purpose. But this is so much more. Wow.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2008 5:27 pm 
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Okay, I've been playing with the Magic User... Ridiculously weak at first, ridiculously powerful with maxed stats.

Both wizard minigames are a lot of fun to play (and they're also very difficult, IMHO, especially Aziza's). I'm sure scripting Keapon's AI took quite a bit of time. :p

I've noticed two weird things - first, the Griffin battle is quite buggy with a Magic User. I ran into plenty of glitches which caused the graphics to be "misdisplayed" (for example, at one point the Griffin was displayed *behind* the hero).
Second, the Juggernaut version of the Earth Elemental has all of its abilities right at the start of the fight (unlike the Winged Legend, which gets more abilities during the course of the fight, just like when you fight it without using battle mode), which probably makes it the second hardest battle in the game. Not sure if it's intentional.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:18 pm 
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Projectiles can cause issues with the griffin due to the way he moves between rows. Zap is generally more effective since you usually get plenty of time to cast it as long as Merv is on the ground.

Quote:
Both wizard minigames are a lot of fun to play (and they're also very difficult, IMHO, especially Aziza's). I'm sure scripting Keapon's AI took quite a bit of time.


Keapon's AI wasn't quite so difficult to make...it just involves some functions that check if a bolt on any of the 5 rows will hit home with or without an alteration to the field. Aziza's AI, however, was very difficult to script due to the many rules her game has.

And yeah, due to the way the earth elemental battle is scripted, accessing it with the combat select makes it a phase 3 battle from the start. I didn't bother looking into it, since battle mode is a debug option.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2008 8:51 pm 
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Merv battle - I agree, Zap is usually more effective. And the griffin is really good at blocking spells when he's on the ground.

Aziza's AI - whoa, I didn't think it could have been that difficult to make. Shows how little I know about AIs. But it's true that the game is much more complicated than it looks. It took me a while to get used to the rules. A very difficult game with a very good reward.

In other news, I've managed to make the Ghoul damage itself with its Boom spell. No luck getting the funny death message yet, though. I did manage to make the magic user version of SSJ kill himself - I didn't even need to attack him.

I've also been trying to find what causes Aziza to get really mad - haven't found out yet, but she doesn't like it when you pick your nose. :p


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2008 9:08 pm 
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It's something that's triggered when you type a certain something into the parser...something that would get you either bitchslapped or arrested in real life.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on the combat system (SPOILERS)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:42 am 
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Hmm. I've tried being bloodthirsty (attack, kill, murder, destroy, obliterate...), being very rude (burp, drool, spit...), being very coarse (insert censored expletives there), and being a pervert (again, censored because these boards aren't NC-17).

Either I'm very close or I'm missing some kind of prerequisite.


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