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I remember reading in a thread somewhere, that weapons do up to double damage at all times, not just on X-COM soldiers. This means that the rated in-game values are actually the averages. I think it was in Zombie's "Damage Modifiers" thread. Can anyone confirm or deny this, because the formula at the top of the page, with the 0.5 and 2 in it, is confusing to me?

In my understanding, it was simply like this:

A rifle, rated as 30 damage, will actually do anywhere from 0-60 damage. Then you multiply this by the damage modifiers and then subtract the armour...

--Danial 18:08, 23 Oct 2005 (PDT)

That's the impression I'm getting from what I've seen... that actually it's the average that's being shown in the game. So I'm with you. Want to ask Zombie? Or I can. --MikeTheRed 11:17, 24 Oct 2005 (PDT)

Exactly correct guys. All damage numbers listed by the game's UFOpaedia are averages. I believe I mentioned this fact in my 3rd or 4th post in the Damage Modifiers thread at the StrategyCore forums. For most weapons/ammo, the Minimum is 0 and the Maximum is Average * 2. The weapons/ammo in this category include Armor Piercing, Laser, Plasma, Stun Rod and the Small Launcher's Stun Bomb.

The types of ammo that don't quite follow that category are Incendiary and High Explosives. The HE Minimum is AVE/2, while the Maximum is AVE*3/2. However, if you average the min and the max, it is still what the game mentions. Overall, it's a smaller range of damage that can be inflicted, and that means the probability of the higher damages showing up is greater than an ammo with the same max.

Example 1:

HE ammo with 100 listed strength
Min = 50
Ave = 100
Max = 150
Probability of max showing up = 1/(150-50+1) = 0.990%

AP ammo with 75 listed strength
Min = 0
Ave = 75
Max = 150
Probability of max showing up = 1/(150-0+1) = 0.662%

Conclusion: if you have the choice between HE with 100 listed damage and a normal weapon with 75, choose the HE. However, if you have two types of ammo with the same average, things become different.

Example 2:

HE ammo with 100 listed strength
Min = 50
Ave = 100
Max = 150
Probability of max showing up = 1/(150-50+1) = 0.990%

AP ammo with 100 listed strength
Min = 0
Ave = 100
Max = 200
Probability of max showing up = 1/(200-0+1) = 0.498%

Unfortunately, we are comparing apples to oranges in this case since the max for the AP is much greater than HE. In reality, AP ammo will out-perform the HE according to this: 1 / (AP max - HE Max + 1), or 1 / (200-150+1) = 1.961%. That's almost double the HE doing it's max of 0.990%. By this you would be tempted to outfit all your troopers with AP instead of HE with the same listed damage. But wait. HE will actually out-perform AP according to this: 1 / (HE min - AP min + 1), or 1 / (50-0+1) = 1.961%.

Conclusion: Is either ammo better? Nope, it's a crap-shoot. The probability of the AP under-performing the HE's min negates its probability of out-performing the HE's max. But there is one fact than still remains: the HE always does a minimum damage > 0, and it's damage affects an area instead of a single tile. This might be beneficial to soldiers since every shot that connects (or even falls a bit short) will damage the target.

Incendiary weapon strength is theorized to determine the area of flames, not the damage inflicted. Damage for that type is either 0 or between 5 and 10 depending if the unit catches fire, or between 1 and 12 if the unit is standing in fire. Hope this helps. --Zombie 15:06, 24 Oct 2005 (PDT)

Great stuff, Z! Thanks for clarifying. Danial or I will move this to the Damage Formula page soon. It's great to have sweeping generalities in black and white :) -MikeTheRed 17:39, 24 Oct 2005 (PDT)

Melee damage ranges

What's the damage range used for melee attacks (stun rods/alien terrorists)? 0 to x2, x0.5 to x1.5, or something else?--Ethereal Cereal 00:36, 14 March 2007 (PDT)

For Stun Rods and HTH alien attacks the range is 0-2x.--Zombie 08:45, 14 March 2007 (PDT)

Cool Table, Zombie

Thanks so much for making the time to put that there. It must have taken some tweaking.

To me, though, the mind's eye notices differences more quickly. Which is to say, here, to have made all the 100s be "-" and then the rest be +20 or -10 or whatever.

Just a thought. Please delete this after reading it! - MikeTheRed 00:14, 6 July 2007 (PDT)


So weapons may do anything from zero to twice their nominal damage. I have the impression that this isn't totally random, but sort of a bell-curvish distribution. Laser Rifle vs Floater should require two hits about 1/3rd of the time and it feels as if one-shot kills were a lot more common. However, I don't have any actual data to back this up.

Also, can it be that the soldier's firing accuracy does matter? That good marksmen not only have a higher to-hit chance to begin with, but also receive a bonus on their damage roll? --Schnobs 18:45, 10 November 2007 (PST)

Typo in damage modifiers table

Looks like there is a typo in the table for incendiary damage against personal armor. 0 is listed while it should be 80. I spotted this one, there might be others. Here is the raw data I have:

.data:0046DE58 damageModifierAP         dw 64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,3Ch,64h,64h,64h,64h,50h,3Ch; 0
.data:0046DE74 damageModifierIncendiary dw 64h,64h,50h, 0,28h,46h,46h,64h, 0,50h,0AAh,64h,64h,64h; 0
.data:0046DE90 damageModifierHE         dw 64h,64h,64h,64h,4Bh,64h,64h,64h,82h,64h,64h,50h,3Ch,50h; 0
.data:0046DEAC damageModifierLaser      dw 64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,96h,64h,46h; 0
.data:0046DEC8 damageModifierPlasma     dw 64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,50h,64h,46h; 0
.data:0046DEE4 damageModifierStun       dw 64h,64h,5Ah,50h,64h,64h,50h,64h,64h,5Ah,64h,64h,64h, 0; 0
.data:0046DF00 damageModifierMelee      dw 64h,78h,64h,64h,5Ah,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h; 0
.data:0046DF1C damageModifierAcidSpit   dw 64h,0A0h,6Eh,64h,28h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h,64h; 0
I've personally stood my soldiers in personal armor in flames without them taking any damage. Arrow Quivershaft 19:16, 9 February 2008 (PST)

The damage modifiers from the executable are correct, it's just that certain armor types override those values. For instance, Personal Armor is listed at 80% against incendiary in the executable, but in real-life situations soldiers wearing this armor type are completely safe from fire. I suppose we should make a note of this. --Zombie 21:33, 13 February 2008 (PST)

Damage Doubling

Sirgalahadwizard's last edit got me wondering:

(edit: In TFTD, the listed weapon damage in the UFOpaedia is still the average damage caused, but the difference from UFO is that random weapon damage is rolled twice and averaged, which produces values which are more often closer to the average)

Doesn't that just result in the same thing? I mean, it still results in damage being anywhere between 0 - 200%. Even in UFO, most of the damage does tends to fall somewhere along the average.

However, it has got me wondering about how the number is actually doubled. I don't think we've ever chronicled how UFO doubles the damage. Whether it's doubled by rolling a random number and feeding the doubled damaged as the range for the random value, or like the one mentioned: rolled twice, added up and then halved.

- NKF 21:53, 13 March 2008 (PDT)

Statistically, the more dice you roll, the closer you'll get to the average. Take a d6. Rolling 1d6, you have an equal chance of getting any value, 1-6. With 2d6, you have 36 different combos, of which nearly half of them (16) are 6, 7, or 8, all right in the middle. Whereas the chances of getting a 2 or 12 are only 1 in 36 each! So no, they aren't the same; rolling twice means that, statistically, you'll get values in the middle far more often than outliers.
As for how damage was calculated...I think it multiplies the average by a random interger between 0 and 2, with decimals out to hundereths. Or something along those lines. Arrow Quivershaft 21:57, 13 March 2008 (PDT)
Oh, no question about the difference in value distribution of the two methods. I just meant that either method still allows for values between 0 to 200%. I'm just wondering what the game actually uses and to find out if UFO uses a different method from TFTD. - NKF 22:38, 13 March 2008 (PDT)
That, I have no idea on. Sorry. I'd actually suspect that the method used is the same...TFTD was just a quick skin change of UFO. Very little actual code got changed, they just played around with the number bits for stats to change stuff. And the names and graphics, obviously. The thicker skin(higher armor) of the TFTD aliens may mask this, though. Arrow Quivershaft 22:46, 13 March 2008 (PDT)

One thing I'm not clear on from reading the above is whether the damage roll for UFO Defense is rolled once or twice. In other words, is it linear or bell-curved. Sounds like we believe TFTD is rolled twice and averaged, and it does seem reasonable to suppose that UFO is also rolled twice since it's substantially the same game engine. Can anyone provide any more information? I'm trying to get an exact formula for effective average damage vs armourin UFO Defence, so I need to know if the function is linear or gaussian, and if gaussian, how many rolls. Also do we know what the range & granularity is. E.g. is it 0% to 100% in units of 1%, or 0 to maximum damage in units of 1, etc? Spike 07:02, 5 April 2008 (PDT)

Zombie has explicitly verified that the damage roll for UFO Defense is only once. Also, the result of rolling twice and averaging is pretty much a right triangle, not a bell curve. [Not exactly, because of integer truncation; there are three ways to roll zero but only one way to roll maximum, for instance.] -- Zaimoni 13:38, 6 Apr 2008 (CDT)
In contrast: rolling twice, and then adding, is as close to a right triangle as a discrete probability distribution can get. -- Zaimoni 16:10, 6 Apr 2008 (CDT)

Thank you Zaimoni. And what about the rolled range and steps? Is is e.g. 0.00 - 2.00 x Average, or (zero) to (2 * Average) in integer steps, or ? That's probably a hard thing to deduce, it might need code inspection. Spike 11:54, 7 April 2008 (PDT)

I think I identified the code for this. Standard damage goes like this:
.text:0040DF58 66 8B 0D E8 83 47 00    mov     cx, currentWeapon_damage
.text:0040DF5F 66 D1 E1                shl     cx, 1
.text:0040DF62 51                      push    ecx                             ; rndMax
.text:0040DF63 E8 E8 F8 02 00          call    GetRandom_0_n
.text:0040DF68 83 C4 04                add     esp, 4
.text:0040DF6B 8B C8                   mov     ecx, eax
which means damage*2*rand()
For HE damage:
.text:0040DF36 66 A1 E8 83 47 00       mov     ax, currentWeapon_damage
.text:0040DF3C 50                      push    eax                             ; rndMax
.text:0040DF3D E8 0E F9 02 00          call    GetRandom_0_n
.text:0040DF42 66 8B C8                mov     cx, ax
.text:0040DF45 83 C4 04                add     esp, 4
.text:0040DF48 0F BF 05 E8 83 47 00    movsx   eax, currentWeapon_damage
.text:0040DF4F 99                      cdq
.text:0040DF50 2B C2                   sub     eax, edx
.text:0040DF52 D1 F8                   sar     eax, 1
.text:0040DF54 03 C8                   add     ecx, eax
which is damage*rand()+damage/2
rand() is base on a linear congruent generator:
.text:0045FA65 A1 58 68 47 00          mov     eax, rand_internal_state
.text:0045FA6A 69 C0 FD 43 03 00       imul    eax, 214013
.text:0045FA70 05 C3 9E 26 00          add     eax, 2531011
.text:0045FA75 A3 58 68 47 00          mov     rand_internal_state, eax
.text:0045FA7A C1 F8 10                sar     eax, 10h
.text:0045FA7D 25 FF 7F 00 00          and     eax, 7FFFh
.text:0045FA82 C3                      retn
(For the curious, it is the Microsoft Visual/Quick C/C++ version)). HTH. Seb76 13:06, 7 April 2008 (PDT)

Acid Spit Damage Range?

An obscure question, but what's the damage range for Acid Spit? Is it a 0-2 or a 0.5-1.5, or ??? My spreadsheet of Battlescape weapons & attacks is nearly complete, I just need to get the Celatid attach right. Spike 15:09, 5 September 2008 (PDT)

Celatid Acid spit operates on the same damage as a normal weapon. 0-2. Arrow Quivershaft 15:35, 5 September 2008 (PDT)

TFTD Damage rolls

Can someone confirm that in TFTD, the damage multiplier is rolled twice and averaged? If so, this will have a big impact (upwards) on the effectiveness of armour in TFTD, particularly when the armour level is greater than the average damage of a given weapon.

Also, does the doubling-rolling also aply to HE, or just for weapons? Spike 13:25, 8 October 2008 (CDT)

In all honesty, I suspect not. That'd be a bit of a complex change for the otherwise hacked-out mod of UFO. So I really suspect there is no difference; IMO, that was idle conjecture based on an incorrect edit. As it currently stands, I'd say treat TFTD damage calculations as identical to UFO damage calculations up until we find conclusive evidence to the contrary. Arrow Quivershaft 14:22, 8 October 2008 (CDT)
Great news, otherwise the weapon vs armour damage averages are fiendish to calculate. That means I can use my TFTD weapon firepower analysis pretty much as is. Time to format it up! Spike 17:08, 8 October 2008 (CDT)

Incendiary vs. Sectopod

Does Incendiary damage mean that it is a plausibly useful technique to hit 3 sectopods with a Incendiary rocket... then have some team members auto-fire incendiary rounds into the ground? I haven't had a chance to test this out yet, but I'm considering giving it a shot... Jasonred 03:48, 6 March 2009 (CST

The sectopods will behave the same as any other alien with respect to the mystery incendiary impact-damage pops. Unfortunately, they have heaps of health. Then again, let's assume that all four segments are affected independently... well then it may just be a viable strategy. Give it a shot (or several - as the case may be!) against them anyway. -NKF 04:18, 6 March 2009 (CST)

I'm sure the incendiary exploit would work, but there's not much honour in exploiting such an illogical bug. Standing in a corner autofiring AC-IN into a bush, and watching Sectopods die on the other side of the map? It's a bit silly. Having said that, if you did it in a non-exploit way, just firing incendiaries at one Sectopod at a time until each one died, that would be cool. A similar thing happened to me. I was running tests where the aliens were trying to shoot me using every possible weapon. I had amped all the armour levels of my guys up to 255 all over and under (a bit like a Sectopod). The only thing that killed me was the incendiary rounds.
Spike 04:30, 6 March 2009 (CST)

Vertical Damage

Oh yes, one more thing... when shooting from directly underneath a target, can you hit under armor? Or would you still hit front/read/side armor? Jasonred 03:48, 6 March 2009 (CST)

As for hitting from underneath: It's directional I'm afraid. -NKF 04:18, 6 March 2009 (CST)
Does seem strange that you don't hit under armour even if the target is directly above you, and you are both in the (horizontal) centre of the square. If it does not hit Under armour, what side does it hit? How can it possibly calculate / know which side, or whether it's "front"? That doesn't really make sense?
Spike 04:30, 6 March 2009 (CST)
Easy to see which side it hits... just check which armor is damaged! Penetrating shots always damage armor, IIRC. Jasonred 05:41, 6 March 2009 (CST)
What I mean is, how does the game engine determine which side/front will be damaged. If the shooter and the target have exactly the same X and Y coordinates, and differ only in Z, there is no way to calculate if the shooter is 'in front of' or 'at (a) side of' the target - it's meaningless. Maybe the firing position is offset from the dead centre of the square. Or they might effectively project the shooter and target back away from each other along the axis they are facing. That might work. But it still wouldn't make sense. I wonder why they gave Floaters such high Under armour if it's impossible to hit the Under armour when they are in the air? Spike 06:24, 6 March 2009 (CST)

I think the answer to this may be fairly simple. For basic non-explosive attacks, compass directions may be the key. The direction the shooter facing is compared against the recipient's facing. If shooter is facing north and receiver is facing east, then the recipient's right plates get damaged. If both are facing north, then the recipient gets hit in the back.

Obviously, for explosive attacks, it's based on the direction the target is facing away from ground-zero and (for whether it hits under or directional armour ) how far away it is from it.

You have to be facing a particular direction even if you are standing on the same tile's x/y coordinates - and since there's no upward facing, it'll be in one of the 8 compass directions. I guess the next question is: How is your firing angle determined when you're firing a vertical shot? -NKF 06:48, 6 March 2009 (CST)

I'm sure you're right about it being determined by facing. It's the easy way to do it, and actually works when you are on the same level so it would be impressive if they wrote code that could handle the vertical case. It leads to the tactical tip that if you are attacking someone from directly above or below, face the same way as them, to hit their rear armour. It also leads to the slightly odd situation where 2 opponents on the same map square, facing the same way, are both firing into each other's rear armour. :) Spike 07:03, 6 March 2009 (CST)

Recall that when you fire in true vertical directions, your soldier is only able to shoot when facing to the North West. So there is no way you would be able to control where the hits actually go. --Zombie 09:41, 6 March 2009 (CST)

Armour Damage (armour reduction) mechanics?

It's not clear to me from the main article, how damage to Armour works, i.e. how Armour levels are reduced by damage. The section on Armour vs. Health Damage sort of implies the answer. It talks about Armour Damage as if this was equivalent to Penetrating Damage. In fact, I suspect Penetrating Damage would be a better term to use in that section (maybe rename it too). Let me restate my understanding, please check if this is correct.

  • Non-penetrating damage, i.e. any damage less than or equal to the current Armour level, has no effect on armour level (or Health)
  • "Penetrating Damage" means the amount by which (final, modified) damage exceeds the current Armour level on the affected facing

*Each point of Penetrating Damage causes 1 point of permanent damage (reduction) to Armour level (on that facing)

    • Of course the Armour level on a facing can't be reduced below zero

*N points of Penetrating Damage causes (N-1) * 10 + 1-9 points of Health Damage (reduction) (where N > 0)

And when we get this clarified, my follow up question will be, "Do all damage types (e.g. Stun, HE) reduce armour in the same way?"

Spike 04:52, 30 January 2011 (EST)

These deeply technical articles aren't really my forte, but I always thought the formula Armor Damage = INT( Health Damage / 10 ) + 1 followed by the table succinctly describes how much armour is damaged depending on how much penetrating damage is dealt. It could certainly be rewritten or summarized for clarity.
Most direct damage types should follow the armour damage model. Stun doesn't damage armour. Fire doesn't either, not its initial impact damage or its persistent damage. I verified that on an unarmoured rookie, having only 5 back and 2 under armour. While testing that I discovered that units on fire but not standing in a fire patch are also affected by the incendiary 'hit-everything-in-fire' bug. -NKF 05:59, 30 January 2011 (EST)
Thanks NKF. I will rewrite the main section so that it's more clear to me - and hopefully to others. I will leave in that formula, since it seems succinct to you. Cheers Spike 08:13, 30 January 2011 (EST)

Effect of Armour Degradation on TUs-To-Kill

The section above was prompted by thinking about the best weapons for attacking Lobstermen. It also made me think that to correctly model using weapons against Lobstermen, or anything else that is really hard to kill, you have to model the progressive degradation of their armour under prolonged, sustained attack. Luckily they don't tend to change facing much during active combat. This would particularly affect my "TUs to Kill" metric, which currently doesn't assume any armour degradation while trying to kill (the same) target.

Assuming the target isn't moving around too much but is presenting the same facing, and assuming none of the attackers are able to flank the target to attack a different facing...

In the case of a more effective weapon, typically armour reduction will be equal to, or slightly greater than, ( target's total Health / 10). So a target with 100 Health is not going to lose a lot more than 10 Armour during the process of dying.

I guess if we take the case with a weak, borderline-effective weapon, where killing the target takes a l-o-n-g time, each penetrating hit reduces armour level by one. It's conceivable (unlikely) that the target's Armour could be reduced by as much as it's total Health, before it dies. Of course, the more the target's armour degrades, the less likely that scenario becomes.

Calculating the effect on target survivability vs a specific weapon (TUs-to-Kill) is difficult because this is a non linear function. Each reduction in Armour level makes the target easier to kill. I don't think I have the mathematical brainpower to model it correctly, with a derivative. Even this would only be an approximation, because of all the integer rounding. So to get the right number, you would need to solve it iteratively, with an algorithm. I'd be interested to do that, just to see how much of a difference it makes.

My instinct, from experience, is that it does make a difference. For example, in theory GC-HE is almost useless against Lobstermen, but if you persist at it, and everyone fires loads of rounds, it is do-able and "easier than it ought to be". Paricularly if you soften them up with Sonic Pulsers first. And of course, wherever you fire from, you're targeting the same armour facing - Under Armour - with all your weapons, which is much more efficient than spreading damage across multiple facings of the target.

Spike 09:04, 30 January 2011 (EST)

I hammered together a quick C++ program to simulate GC-HE damage against a lobsterman. I've gone over the formulas a couple of times and it seems to be working fine. Here are 3 samples of the various results I got.
Lobsterman Soldier
        Health: 90
        Armour: 10
        HE resist: 30%
HE Weapon average strength: 65

Dumping results:

Pass   1:  HP: 88  ARM:  9 WPN Dmg: 43 WPN P. Dmg:  2 ARM Dmg:  1
Pass   2:  HP: 88  ARM:  9 WPN Dmg: 33 WPN P. Dmg:  0 ARM Dmg:  0
Pass   3:  HP: 73  ARM:  7 WPN Dmg: 80 WPN P. Dmg: 15 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   4:  HP: 68  ARM:  6 WPN Dmg: 42 WPN P. Dmg:  5 ARM Dmg:  1
Pass   5:  HP: 58  ARM:  4 WPN Dmg: 55 WPN P. Dmg: 10 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   6:  HP: 40  ARM:  2 WPN Dmg: 76 WPN P. Dmg: 18 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   7:  HP: 30  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 40 WPN P. Dmg: 10 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   8:  HP: 14  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 54 WPN P. Dmg: 16 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   9:  HP: -9  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 79 WPN P. Dmg: 23 ARM Dmg:  3
Lobsterman Soldier
        Health: 90
        Armour: 10
        HE resist: 30%
HE Weapon average strength: 65

Dumping results:

Pass   1:  HP: 82  ARM:  9 WPN Dmg: 63 WPN P. Dmg:  8 ARM Dmg:  1
Pass   2:  HP: 69  ARM:  7 WPN Dmg: 76 WPN P. Dmg: 13 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   3:  HP: 51  ARM:  5 WPN Dmg: 85 WPN P. Dmg: 18 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   4:  HP: 31  ARM:  2 WPN Dmg: 86 WPN P. Dmg: 20 ARM Dmg:  3
Pass   5:  HP: 21  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 42 WPN P. Dmg: 10 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   6:  HP:  3  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 60 WPN P. Dmg: 18 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   7:  HP:-23  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 89 WPN P. Dmg: 26 ARM Dmg:  3
Lobsterman Soldier
        Health: 90
        Armour: 10
        HE resist: 30%
HE Weapon average strength: 65

Dumping results:

Pass   1:  HP: 83  ARM:  9 WPN Dmg: 59 WPN P. Dmg:  7 ARM Dmg:  1
Pass   2:  HP: 66  ARM:  7 WPN Dmg: 89 WPN P. Dmg: 17 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   3:  HP: 48  ARM:  5 WPN Dmg: 86 WPN P. Dmg: 18 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   4:  HP: 33  ARM:  3 WPN Dmg: 69 WPN P. Dmg: 15 ARM Dmg:  2
Pass   5:  HP:  9  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 92 WPN P. Dmg: 24 ARM Dmg:  3
Pass   6:  HP:-13  ARM:  0 WPN Dmg: 76 WPN P. Dmg: 22 ARM Dmg:  3
I ran this over and over and 5 shots seems to be the lowest and 10 shots the most to take this lobsterman down. -NKF 18:09, 30 January 2011 (EST)
Ah, great stuff! I can picture the determined squad of Aquanauts, firing repeatedly and focusing all their fire on a lone Lobsterman, until he goes down. Nice. From experience of doing this - the biggest problem is carrying enough GC-HE ammunition to finish the mission. Thanks for modelling it, NKF. Spike 22:01, 30 January 2011 (EST)
I had to augment to handle this. Ignoring stunning and assuming I have things entered correctly (I distrust both the exact HE damage distribution before damage reduction, and the exact damage reduction implementation), the absolute mininum number of HE rounds needed to kill a lobsterman is 4 with theoretical probability 2/3,570,125 of success (less than 1 in a million). Corresponding theoretical probability of surviving ten hits is ~0.24%.
These numbers assume that the theoretical HE distribution is a uniform discrete distribution with range 33-97 [INT(65/2)=32], and that the damage reduction is implemented as a truncating multiply INT(3*damage/10). Note that raw high explosive damage 36 is reduced to damage 10. -- Zaimoni 1:23, 31 January 2011 (CST)
Also, unless exceptional care was taken in choosing the RNG (Mother-of-All was on USENET by then), there will be enough correlation to keep the lobsterman from being awesomely lucky. -- Zaimoni 1:29, 31 January 2011 (CST)


Awesome rewrite, NKF! Spike 17:36, 28 March 2011 (EDT)

Thanks, but it's not quite right as of yet. It's actually a rather complex topic once I got down to thinking how to rewrite it so that it read easier. Perhaps the first thing that should be shown to the reader are the formula (or formulas), then break it down from there? -NKF 00:49, 29 March 2011 (EDT)
No I think you are doing it the right way by introducing concepts and definitions first. Maybe you could 'tease' with a formula at the beginning. But opening with just maths is usually off-putting for most people. Spike 15:24, 29 March 2011 (EDT)

Rewrite take 2 - don't know if that's made it better or worse, but I tried to reorder the sections into a more logical manner. Mainly moved the formula section up so that the sections after it read more like elaborations on the variables that affect damage.

Also don't think we needed all the damage modifiers (for UFO) on display, so pointed to the article instead and just gave a short explanation on what it is.

Finally, is there a nicer way to display the formulas? Preformatted text boxes are starting to look so passe now that we've been adding a bit of bling to the articles. ;) -NKF 04:42, 31 March 2011 (EDT)

It's a good edit. The article is looking a lot more logical. I still worry there is too much detail and maybe overlapping or redundant detail about the nitty gritty mechanics. A simple example would be better first. E.g. most readers are not trying to determine the exact probability of some event, they just want to know generally how it works. So Zombie's example probably isn't the best one to use here. A simple example would be to look at one case (not the range of probabilities) and say X damage, Y health damage, Z armour damage, N chance of fatal wounds. Maybe do Fatal wounds last because it's the only thing that's not deterministic, given X amount of damage. I'm thinking maybe the Damage - Armour Damage relationship can go. It's more or less a statement of the obvious and while it does help in making the formula clear, a few examples would do the same job of clarification, I don't think the whole table is needed.
I agree a nicer formula layout would be nice. I'm sure such things can be done in wiki layout language. Er, somehow.
Sorry for this exercise in 'armchair editing'. I'm a bit too groggy this morning to actually tackle the text itself. Spike 05:42, 1 April 2011 (EDT)
Don't worry about armchair editing. Feedback is just as useful.
To be honest, I've only spent time on the sections I edited and haven't really had a chance to look at anything from Zombie's example onwards to see how it all fits together.
The article can start off with the basics and then progress to more advanced material. Zombies example could be left in further down the page as a bit 'further reading' for advanced readers that want something a bit more elaborate, while simpler examples earlier in the page would be more beneficial for the casual reader.
Some material might even deserve their own articles but we'll see how it goes.
I must also remember to come back and fix the errors - I seem to have left out a lot of words that I thought I put in. Was probably reading off the work that's in my head when I was proofreading! -NKF 08:06, 1 April 2011 (EDT)
Yeah I know how that goes myself. I suspected you were just working your way down the page and hadn't got to Zombie's example yet. It makes sense to leave that for last as 'advanced reading'. Good luck, and thanks! Spike 14:08, 1 April 2011 (EDT)

TFTD Damage and questions re Tycho

Morgan525/Tycho has identified that TFTD damage is 50-150% from 'all sources'. That has a big impact on previous assumptions about the relative effectiveness of weapons, particularly against targets with high armour levels and/or high damage resistance. Basically it means that the TFTD HE weapons (for which we correctly assumed 50-150% damage range) will be relatively more effective compared to the other TFTD weapons (for which we incorrectly assumed 0-200% damage range as per EU). Basically if you were assuming the best weapon against a high-armour, high-resistance target was a direct fire weapon, due to the greater armour penetration from getting into the 150%-200% range, that assumption now looks wrong. A direct fire weapon is no more effective against armour than an area weapon with the same base damage value - and the area effect weapon gives you the chance to attack under armour on a direct hit, which is a decisive advantage vs. a hard target.

Questions for Tycho:

  1. There are some special cases in EU, notably the Stun Bomb which has 0-200% damage range, despite being an area effect weapon. Are you sure there is not a special routine or exception for the Thermal Shok Launcher, also giving it 0-200% damage range? )I've left the TSL example on the main page untouched for now at 0-200%).
In EU and TFTD all damage is handled by the DoDamageToUnit subroutine. In EU, the damage type was checked against HE and routed to the script that generated 50-150%, all else (including Stun) went through the main script to generate 0-200%. TFTD still does this check but all results lead to the same script.Tycho 22:34, 24 September 2012 (EDT)
  1. In terms of Terrain and Object damage effects for TFTD, do all weapons behave like explosions do in EU (50%, no variation), or is there some other behaviour seen?
I'm not certain about object and terrain but I can check. Tycho 22:34, 24 September 2012 (EDT)
  1. Also, to be clear, does the 50-150% range also apply to alien attacks, including alien terrorist built in attacks, alien explosives, etc? Does it apply to SWS weapons? You're saying it applies to "all sources" of damage so I'm assuming "yes" to all that for now. :)
I am 99% certain that this is correct for both sides.Tycho 22:34, 24 September 2012 (EDT)

And I've had a first stab at a rewrite.

Spike 09:43, 20 September 2012 (EDT)