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Partly inspired by this old thread:

Partly inspired by the Sword of Heaven and Earth LP which is slowly giving @Shaky Jones marrow-pattern baldness, in which he discusses some interesting ideas for effective weapons.

How should they work? The effective weapons, of course.

In Fates, they get hit and damage penalties against units they aren't effective against. I'm not sure I agree with this design choice, since it gives effective weapons a bonus some of the time and a penalty in every other instance. Why not just have them be naturally bad, but increase the bonuses against their preferred targets?

Shaky suggested giving them bonus hit against the units they're effective against. He specifically suggested triple hit, which might be a little extreme, but the broad idea is interesting. Should effective weapons not only deal huge damage, but do so very reliably?

Would changes like these be smart to apply to bows, or should they only apply to hammers and beastkillers and such?

Furthermore, and most important of all, should we bring back the Swordslayer?

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12 minutes ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

In Fates, they get hit and damage penalties against units they aren't effective against. I'm not sure I agree with this design choice, since it gives effective weapons a bonus some of the time and a penalty in every other instance. Why not just have them be naturally bad, but increase the bonuses against their preferred targets?

Isn't that basically the same thing in the end?

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2 minutes ago, Florete said:

Isn't that basically the same thing in the end?

Exactly. Given that they're functionally the same, I think it would be simpler and more intuitive to just have one modifier, rather than two sets of modifiers where one is always active.

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Being Iron+ is a sweet spot i like for them. Its not like you'd immediately main them over Iron anyway and Iron being the "basic" makes it easy to plan the numbers around them

 

Fates trying to overcomplicate shit is dumb

Edited by JSND Alter Dragon Boner

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I think that it depends on the game's durability system. If the effective weapons have limited availability, durability, and can't be repaired, then that is their weakness. I'm not going to use my rapier to enemy-phase a bunch of infantry mooks, because if I do then it will quickly break and I won't have it when I need it. But for games without durability or with durability but with easy repairing, then I like for there to be some sort of drawback so that they aren't just strictly better than basic weapons.

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I like these more as combat arts than as separate weapons. Because when you're up against that specific type of opponent, it should change your fighting style. A horse charging at you? Plant your feet in the ground and point that stick at the rider. Unseat him. Big armor dude? Don't chop away at his armor, find the fleshy bits and cut there. And if you've got a blunt weapon, pummel those joints like you're pummeling the person inside. Pegasus swooping in? ...I don't know how you fight an opponent that flies. 

Edited by Zapp Branniglenn

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In my own tabletop system, which doesn't have durability on weapons, I made the effective weapons slightly worse versions of their same-rank standard weapons.

For example an iron sword has 6 hit and 4 might, a rapier has 4 hit and 2 might. since might gets tripled against beasts and armor for the rapier, it has 6 might versus those affinities. (And there are ways to improve might on weapons, which will then also get tripled.)

I have to say the damage gets a bit out of hand this way, but the affinities are generally powerful enough to make that okay. (Mounted gives movement+2 on a base 3 movement, heavy armor earlygame gives about a +6 to protection on a base 2 defense. Don't even get me started on the powerhouses that are Laguz.)

Not saying it's completely balanced yet, but it works fairly well this way. Having only 3 slots for weapons to bring also really makes players think about what effective weaponry they want to carry.

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5 hours ago, Zapp Branniglenn said:

Pegasus swooping in? ...I don't know how you fight an opponent that flies. 

With a giant fly-swatter, duh.

Anyway, yeah Fates' scheme is pretty dumb. Why does it list weapon stats, if my weapon is never actually going to have said stats in battle?

I'd prefer the effective bonus to just be clear and predictable. Something like a raw +10 Might would be better than 2x Might for low-Might earlygame weapons (i.e. Rapier, Iron Bow), and better than 3x Might for effective Wind, but weaker otherwise. Could still provide the edge on an otherwise-decent weapon. Maybe add a clean +50 Hit to the mix - after all, a Hammer's effective damage means nothing if it can't land. I think this would be a solid place, where effective weapons are seriously threatening, without being certified one-shots.

6 hours ago, lenticular said:

I think that it depends on the game's durability system. If the effective weapons have limited availability, durability, and can't be repaired, then that is their weakness. I'm not going to use my rapier to enemy-phase a bunch of infantry mooks, because if I do then it will quickly break and I won't have it when I need it. But for games without durability or with durability but with easy repairing, then I like for there to be some sort of drawback so that they aren't just strictly better than basic weapons.

GBAFE: "Best I can do is high cost, few uses, low Hit, and high Weight."

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11 hours ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

Exactly. Given that they're functionally the same, I think it would be simpler and more intuitive to just have one modifier, rather than two sets of modifiers where one is always active.

While I agree this is a bad way to do things, and having not-explicitly-specified damage and accuracy penalties against other targets is one of the very few bad things Fates does with its usability, it wouldn't actually be functionally identical unless they changed the effective damage formula. If an armorslayer had 10 might but had a 4 might penalty against non-armor units, that means 30 might against armor but 6 might against not. If it were just 6 might all the time, then it would be only 18 might against armor.

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10 hours ago, Zapp Branniglenn said:

I like these more as combat arts than as separate weapons.

I don't really like combat arts all that much, to be honest. I won't go on a rant about that, but with respect to effective weapons, it's kinda weird you can triple the might of an iron lance, or the might of a silver lance, which, y'know, because of how multiplication works, that can get kinda crazy.

11 hours ago, JSND Alter Dragon Boner said:

Fates trying to overcomplicate shit is dumb

I generally like Fates, but this particular thing is dumb.

18 minutes ago, Alastor15243 said:

While I agree this is a bad way to do things, and having not-explicitly-specified damage and accuracy penalties against other targets is one of the very few bad things Fates does with its usability, it wouldn't actually be functionally identical unless they changed the effective damage formula. If an armorslayer had 10 might but had a 4 might penalty against non-armor units, that means 30 might against armor but 6 might against not. If it were just 6 might all the time, then it would be only 18 might against armor.

That is technically true if you restrict yourself to triple effectiveness, but since killer weapons in Fates deal quadruple damage on crit instead of triple, I think changing the might multiplier would reasonably be on the table. Bows could still have triple effectiveness, while a 6 might Armorslayer could have five times as much might against armors, still achieving a final might of 30.

A very good observation nonetheless.

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I'd honestly say Fates did them almost perfectly. Their only fault is not stating how high the penalty is when attacking a non-effective target.

I don't think "lower MT" is anything complicated either

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I would rather have them with increased hit/avo against certain units along with an small boast to Mt as opposed to just tripling the damage that you can do. Because it stops being less of an strategy game if you can have something that can consistently one-round certain units and the counter (outside of sending literally anything else) is to attack from an distance and then melee them to death.

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A hit bonus on effective damage would be nice, especially if a drawback is supposed to be lower hit so that it doesn't just whiff the targets it's supposed to hit. It also mitigates the usual solution of just rigging a dodge to get around them.

Zapp mentioned combat arts earlier and I do like the thought of how they could interact, but as someone else said the full 3x on any weapon is a bit extreme. I was thinking maybe if it was 2x, with effective arts on effective weapons stacking up to 4x? And that 4x is not fully negated by Iote's Shield or its clones, only being dropped back down to 2x. Another important question is whether it's the Might of the weapon or the art that gets multiplied... iirc both games with arts only do one or the other. I wouldn't mind if it did both; might seem like overkill to have Tempest Lance do triple on Ridersbane but if I'm stacking techs like that I'd be disappointed if it didn't one-shot.

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22 hours ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

In Fates, they get hit and damage penalties against units they aren't effective against. I'm not sure I agree with this design choice, since it gives effective weapons a bonus some of the time and a penalty in every other instance. Why not just have them be naturally bad, but increase the bonuses against their preferred targets?

Shaky suggested giving them bonus hit against the units they're effective against. He specifically suggested triple hit, which might be a little extreme, but the broad idea is interesting. Should effective weapons not only deal huge damage, but do so very reliably?

Yes.

22 hours ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

Would changes like these be smart to apply to bows, or should they only apply to hammers and beastkillers and such?

Yes, only specificly designed effecitve weapons and not general effective weapons like bows or wind (or magic on laguz).

22 hours ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

Furthermore, and most important of all, should we bring back the Swordslayer?

Hmm, maybe, but not as powerful as the above and effective against any unit wielding a weapon, and not by class. I found it a bit weird that infantry like swordmasters just had an effective weapon against them. 

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1 hour ago, X-Naut said:

I was thinking maybe if it was 2x, with effective arts on effective weapons stacking up to 4x? And that 4x is not fully negated by Iote's Shield or its clones, only being dropped back down to 2x. Another important question is whether it's the Might of the weapon or the art that gets multiplied... iirc both games with arts only do one or the other. I wouldn't mind if it did both; might seem like overkill to have Tempest Lance do triple on Ridersbane but if I'm stacking techs like that I'd be disappointed if it didn't one-shot.

This is actually a pretty neat idea. Instead of making Iote's Shield a no-sell, it makes it a hard-sell. I like changes like that it, and it rewards crippling overspecialization.

5 minutes ago, Jotari said:

Hmm, maybe, but not as powerful as the above and effective against any unit wielding a weapon, and not by class. I found it a bit weird that infantry like swordmasters just had an effective weapon against them. 

Actually, wasn't the Swordcatcher in Fates like that? I'm pretty sure it's effective against Paladins using swords, and I'd presume the same for Master Ninjas, Heroes, etc.

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8 hours ago, Jotari said:

Yes, only specificly designed effecitve weapons and not general effective weapons like bows or wind (or magic on laguz).

Hmm, maybe, but not as powerful as the above and effective against any unit wielding a weapon, and not by class. I found it a bit weird that infantry like swordmasters just had an effective weapon against them. 

If you're going to have a hit bonus then IMO it should be consistent. Besides, bow accuracy is already spotty sometimes and a mount with wings presents a wider target, leaving them out would be weird. If that's too good on magic then maybe don't give tomes blanket effective damage?

On the Swordslayer discussion, it's a clear reference to Mystery of the Emblem's Swordslayer, which was a sword designed to kill the Mercenary line since the mechanics made enemy Heroes very tough. So it sort of makes sense that the other sword infantry branch got included... making it an axe with the reaver effect, though? That's definitely a weird choice. Haven't played Awakening/Fates but Superior and "effective against weapon" weapons seemed more sensible because they weren't scissors cutting rock situations.

One place I'd like to see this sort of thing is against magic, particularly on some spells themselves. If Bishops had a way to leverage effective damage against other mages they might hold up better against other magic classes post-staff rank gap.

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10 hours ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

Actually, wasn't the Swordcatcher in Fates like that? I'm pretty sure it's effective against Paladins using swords, and I'd presume the same for Master Ninjas, Heroes, etc.

Yes, but in that case there was also a pike-ruin club and an axe splitter katana, as well as other variations for the ranged weapon classes, so swords weren't getting singled out.

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5 hours ago, X-Naut said:

 Besides, bow accuracy is already spotty sometimes

What do you mean? Bows are consistently the most accurate weapon type in the series.

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27 minutes ago, Jotari said:

What do you mean? Bows are consistently the most accurate weapon type in the series.

No, that's swords.

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4 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Yes, but in that case there was also a pike-ruin club and an axe splitter katana, as well as other variations for the ranged weapon classes, so swords weren't getting singled out.

Bold: Were there? The only one I remember is the Spellbane Yumi, which, unlike the others, is DISADVANTAGED against the weapon it's meant to be used on, and even against them, isn't that much better than a steel. It's also a random obtain.

Edited by Shadow Mir

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8 hours ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

No, that's swords.

They would be, if the weapon triangle didn't exist. Bows can more consistently hit all enemies.

Edited by Jotari

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I agree that "effective against ___, damage penalty against everything else" is silly because their listed might is literally never used. The Wyrmslayer is 5 mt against most enemies and 27 against its preferred targets, so what number is shown on the status screen? 9. Okay then. They could have just made it a 5 mt weapon with "+22 mt vs. [dragon icon]" and been far clearer about its behaviour. (Though +20 would be a nicer number.)

This is a rare case for me to say because I'm not really the world's biggest Genealogy fan, but IMO it had by far the best version of effective damage. "2x Atk" makes for easy calculations which I appreciate in these games. Either that, or just straight-up saying the Atk boost in the weapon's description (as in the example I outlined in the previous paragraph).

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41 minutes ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

I agree that "effective against ___, damage penalty against everything else" is silly because their listed might is literally never used. The Wyrmslayer is 5 mt against most enemies and 27 against its preferred targets, so what number is shown on the status screen? 9. Okay then. They could have just made it a 5 mt weapon with "+22 mt vs. [dragon icon]" and been far clearer about its behaviour. (Though +20 would be a nicer number.)

This is a rare case for me to say because I'm not really the world's biggest Genealogy fan, but IMO it had by far the best version of effective damage. "2x Atk" makes for easy calculations which I appreciate in these games. Either that, or just straight-up saying the Atk boost in the weapon's description (as in the example I outlined in the previous paragraph).

Genealogy's version is an auto crit, the crit system itself just happens to be 2x Atk. And maybe an auto crit under the standard crit system is something worth considering. It's clear and precise and it can actually scale with damage. Effective weapon being tied to weapon might is usually in a happy medium in terms of damage, but it does make relatively low might weapons, say five or under, impossible to implement for early game. Not really a problem per se, but, eh, auto crit wouldn't be the worst idea for effective weapons in general imo.

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13 hours ago, Jotari said:

Genealogy's version is an auto crit, the crit system itself just happens to be 2x Atk. And maybe an auto crit under the standard crit system is something worth considering. It's clear and precise and it can actually scale with damage. Effective weapon being tied to weapon might is usually in a happy medium in terms of damage, but it does make relatively low might weapons, say five or under, impossible to implement for early game. Not really a problem per se, but, eh, auto crit wouldn't be the worst idea for effective weapons in general imo.

I don't think auto-crit works well for weakness weapons, at least under the numbers currently used, because it means armourslayers stop being very effective. A weakness-hit should be able to take normally low damage and make it, if not lethal, then enough to be noticeable. Which means the bonus should come before defence, which is not the case for FE6-onwards criticals.

Of course you could also change how criticals work too.

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1 hour ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

I don't think auto-crit works well for weakness weapons, at least under the numbers currently used, because it means armourslayers stop being very effective. A weakness-hit should be able to take normally low damage and make it, if not lethal, then enough to be noticeable. Which means the bonus should come before defence, which is not the case for FE6-onwards criticals.

Of course you could also change how criticals work too.

Fair point. I do want to change how critical works, bht to generally make them weaker.

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