Fallout 1 and 2 trait/perk rebalance?

Discussion in 'Fallout General Modding' started by Vault11, Jun 11, 2015.

  1. Vault11

    Vault11 Banned

    37
    May 23, 2015
    Does anyone have a guide or method involving the traits and perks and how to mod them? All of the beginner's scripting guides and such only mention changing objects, critters, and the map, but I can never find out anything about character stuff like perks. I've seen a few mods that modify perks such as Fallout Fixt, which modifies animal friend to include radscorpions so it's a more attractive perk. I've been wanting to redo all 53 perks so they are all useful, i.e. a difficult choice between them. Since only 7 may be chosen in any one playthrough, I would like all of them to be worth it depending on the playstyle, instead of choosing the same 5 combat perks every time. Things like buffing Lifegiver to 20 health a rank instead of 5, or changing Friendly Foe to include Steal Targets (will they fight you if you fail to steal?) in order to make it useful to diplomat characters. I've got a whole list of ideas but I really don't know where to begin from the guides. I've even seen some references that perks are impossible(!) to mod because of where they are in the game files, but as I've said I've seen some changes to perks.

    Can anyone point me in the right direction?
     
  2. Sduibek

    Sduibek Creator of Fallout Fixt Moderator Modder

    Oct 27, 2010
    Perks and traits can be edited using Sfall for Fallout 2. There's other modders here such as @JimTheDinosaur or @phobos2077 or @NovaRain that are skilled with such things. Hopefully soon I will be as well :)

    [For Fallout (1), those can presumably be edited by modifying the Falloutw.exe itself, but I try to avoid that because it's just not worth the trouble. I looked into it a while back, and the information wasn't available for Fo1. I'm not good enough at Assembly or reverse-engineering to discover the proper memory locations myself.]

    The changes my mod makes to Perks/Traits are actually kind of a cheat... I use scripting to checks for flags and such. For example the radscorpion scripts will check if the player has the Animal Friend Perk. It's not changing how the game handles the Perk itself, if that makes sense. So I'm soft-coding loops that check for things regarding the hard-coded Perk/Trait.

    So if you're going to rebalance Perks and/or Traits which sounds great to me, definitely stick exclusively to the Fallout 2 engine.

    I think you have good ideas, and I'd really like to see your list of proposed changes. It would be helpful to the community for you to post all of your ideas in this thread. For future reference and discussion :) Thank you!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2016
  3. Vault11

    Vault11 Banned

    37
    May 23, 2015
    Dang, that's a shame because I really wanted Fallout 1 to get rebalanced, though I was thinking of 2 as well. But wait! Didn't I read recently that some Russians had finished/were about to finish a conversion of FO1 to the FO2 engine? Would that mean sfall would be able to more easily reblance perks/traits in FO1 were that to be the case?

    I'm glad you posted Sduibek, I'm a fan of your work and I was hoping you might deign to comment on this thread, it makes me happy you are interested about my ideas on changes. Keep in mind the following list isn't based on any mathematics or harder ideals on balancing, I simply put in values that I thought would give me a tough choice between all of them when it came time to pick the perks, and make it worth it for such a scarce resource (only 7 of them per game). Some effects of the perks (such as Friendly Foe) have nothing to do with their original/effects values, since the originals were so underwheming and not helpful at all, i.e. totally worthless. A lot of the rebalance is just dividing the same end result of three perk levels into two, such as 3 ranks of perk x for 10 each turning into 2 ranks for 15 each. I felt the creators were close enough on the final number to make a good investment, but dividing it into three ranks made the investment way too high to go to the end.

    I also tried to make it so heavy investment would leave you bare in other areas, for example, if you wanted to make a tank character you would choose 3 ranks of Toughness for 45% DR and 2 ranks of Lifegiver for 50 health, but you would have just two perks relating to all of your various skills and abilities for the entire playthrough. Master of defense and nothing else. Or, you could have largely diversified perks to be the jack of all trades and master of none. Or a 3/4 split. Just depends. As we all know, maybe 30 of the perks are extremely marginal and never worth the choice unless you are roleplaying with high detail to your character. I was hoping to change it to the model of every single perk is worth it, and therefore careful consideration must be taken to choose. And I didn't choose these new values to make the invincible character of my dreams; I would still probably never use about 10 of them simply because they would never fit my values and playstyle (Swift Learner for example). And some, a lot of players would probably never use - my change to Fast Healing to make Doctor and First Aid use less time is useful to my playstyle in which I make heavy use of both skills constantly, and I would greatly benefit to cut down on the passing time... though most would fail to see the point, I believe. In any case, the goal is that they are powerful in the right hands that desire them.

    The one I can't think of a new use for is Mental Block, I simply draw a blank when it comes to making anything relevant to it's original use.

     

    Attached Files:

  4. JimTheDinosaur

    JimTheDinosaur Vault Dweller
    Modder

    736
    Mar 17, 2013
    I think you'll find that the balancing issues in FO's traits and perks have relatively little to do with the quantity of the bonusses, and far more with their quality (e.g. you can pump up the initial reaction bonus in presence and first aid healing points in healer all you want, doesn't change the fact that both these mechanics are useless).
     
  5. Vault13

    Vault13 Banned

    1
    Jun 14, 2015
    Yeah, the ones that I knew for sure were worthless I provided additional effects for, on some of the others (Presence as you point out) I honestly have no idea how it works. I just figured a number closer to 50% increase from the base line was more desirable for a diplomat. And the other one you point out (Healer) I flat out disagree - more healing is less stimpaks used, and less time used. As I said earlier, I tried to make choices competetive for people who are interested in the general idea, not make every single perk great for every single potential play (an impossible task in any case). For example, I almost always choose Healer when I make a character in FO2, but not so in FO1 because the little 2-4 original addition is so tiny. And I understand why some people would never use Healer either, it's just a playstyle choice. Thus going back to Presence - maybe someone finds it incredibly useful and I just don't see it. But I will say most of the changes I know inside and out.
     
  6. Fox Wernicke

    Fox Wernicke First time out of the vault

    91
    Sep 11, 2014
    Here's what I found on Per Jorner's walkthrough for Fallout 1:
     
  7. Vault16

    Vault16 Banned

    1
    Jun 14, 2015
    Feel free to make suggestions! This is all up in the air and I posted this here specifically to get more input and ideas from yall before anything is sincerely embarked upon. Now that you've demonstrated Presence is useless no matter the effect, is there any other possible idea for a change that you care to suggest? Maybe get more money/items for quest rewards than standard, for example? Thanks for the feedback in any case - please make cool suggestions or changes of your own if you care to!
     
  8. Sduibek

    Sduibek Creator of Fallout Fixt Moderator Modder

    Oct 27, 2010
    Wait @Sander why did OP get banned?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2016
  9. NovaRain

    NovaRain Casual Modder Modder

    Mar 10, 2007
    Because of the vatted "Europe Migrants Problem" thread.
    You can check ban reason in the wall of shame.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2016
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  10. Sduibek

    Sduibek Creator of Fallout Fixt Moderator Modder

    Oct 27, 2010
    Ohhhh. Thank you. I prefer http://www.head-fi.org/'s policy on such things... zero discussion of politics or religion on the entire site. Keeps things much more civil and much less banning.
     
  11. Sduibek

    Sduibek Creator of Fallout Fixt Moderator Modder

    Oct 27, 2010
    Correct on all counts. I'm working on releasing the engine conversion, so at that point I can include changes to the Perks and/or Traits.

    Thanks :) And yeah I love seeing ideas from people in the community.

    Well either way, I PM'd you to post ideas at http://falloutmods.wikia.com/wiki/F...estions_.2F_Ideas_.2F_Requests_.28NOT_BUGS.29 and this kind of stuff is on my long-term To-Do-List anyway. I just have been postponing it until the engine conversion and getting a handle of Sfall scripting :)

    I've added the contents of the quoted post to Fallout Fixt Bug Reports under Suggestions.
     
  12. JimTheDinosaur

    JimTheDinosaur Vault Dweller
    Modder

    736
    Mar 17, 2013
    First Aid saves you either time or money, both of which matter extremely little in either FO (time matters marginally more in FO1, while money marginally more in FO2). My point wasn't that they're completely useless (strictly speaking only the broken perks are that), but that given the tiny amount of perks you get each playthrough, there's always going to be a superior option, regardless of how much you boost them. For instance, even if you boost rad resistance to 50%, in practice that's one less Rad-X you need for the Glow; hell even if you boost it to 100%, that's two less you need, is that really worth skimping on, say, an Action Boy?

    I suggest taking a look at this if you haven't yet: http://user.tninet.se/~jyg699a/fallout.html#char.

    Few of the perks in the huge doubtful/useless columns have Per complaining that the bonus is too small, and that they'd otherwise be good options.
     
  13. Sduibek

    Sduibek Creator of Fallout Fixt Moderator Modder

    Oct 27, 2010
    Good points.

    One thing I think is worth pointing out is the limitation of Per's assessments is that he's going on a firm basis of metaknowledge and metagaming: What is best after playing the game 50 times for 1000 hours, should only choose what is mathematically superior, etc. Not everyone plays games like that. I've always enjoyed and respected Per's documentation but I think he's too harsh and clinical sometimes in this regard.

    Another thing is the significant difference in playing styles: some people pick whatever works right now, others pick what is best at high level. For example I would love to have more ammo or money (Scrounger, Fortune Finder) early in the game, even though they're plentiful late-game. So I think these perks could work, they just would need some kind of scaling or something so that they don't go from useful to useless as the game progresses.

    I think that's the real issue, actually. Once you hit that tipping point in Fallout, you just waste everybody and it kind of doesn't matter what perks you have. So it's possible the better approach is to make the character-potency curve to be less exponential. I don't know how to do that off the top of my head, I've had to think about it.

    One zany idea I just had, is there could be 'bad' perks or traits that people can choose to add difficulty to the game. Kind of like the options in my installer, but as in-game role-playing-element. For example to continue with Scrounger and Fortune Finder, there could be perks that make you never find ammo or never find bottle caps.

    It's probably impossible to have everything be equally useful. So I think as long as each one is tweaked enough that people will generally say "Oh cool, that sounds fun/good/useful" then it's a success. This might require axing the less potent ones.

    Also what about removing ranks, so they can all only be chosen once? That could be a way to balance things.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2015
  14. lostabroad2

    lostabroad2 First time out of the vault

    66
    Apr 2, 2013
    Interesting thread. I wasn't going to be rude to anyone who thought +20 HP per level as the perk for Lifegiver would bring 'balance' but at least now I won't have to put him/her on ignore...or AdBlock Plus >_>. I come to gaming from a maths background, some extremely outdated computer skills, and a fascination with finding out how something can be exploited in a way that wasn't intended. Still, if you'd like some brainstorming i'd like to be part of the conversation. Perks are at most a secondary issue for me. i'd much rather see the initial starting points rebalanced and the engine calculation logic errors addressed.
    Starter for 10? A good place to start would be the AP calculation. Currently the formula is:

    AP = integer(5+(Agility X0.5))
    so: AG1=AP5, AG2=AP6, AG3=AP6, AG4=AP7, 5=7,6=8,7=8, 8=9,9=9,10=10

    I propose an alteration to:
    AP = integer(6.22 +(Agility X 0.39))
    so: AG1=AP6, AG2=AP7, AG3=AP7, AG4=AP7, 5=8,6=8,7=8, 8=9,9=9,10=10

    Those players looking for AP 9 or 10 won't be affected but those prepared to go down a level will have 3 Special stat points rather than 2 and those prepared to go down to AP 7 will get 6 more special stat points rather than 4. Playing the game with a Special stat of 2 should be a realistic option and should allow for greater variations in playing styles. Even AG1 should finally become a viable option.

    I'd like to do similar things with other base stats and also tweak the skills starting points/formulae.
     
  15. lostabroad2

    lostabroad2 First time out of the vault

    66
    Apr 2, 2013
    Back on topic -
    Possible future perks:
    Self-defense1 & 2. unlike Dodger which helps avoid attacks at all ranges by increasing armour class, (not enough) SD1 would be a zero range only perk allowing those with it a 6% chance to block/avoid the HtH attack or zero range gun shot, (would fail against throwing weapons, flamers, and some others). The 6% reduction would be from the final hit chance %, (normally maximum at 95%), - meaning that that if the chance to hit was 95% and the, (1-100) random number fell on 1-6 the attack would be blocked and if the random number fell between 7-95 the attack would succeed. obviously above 95 the attack would fail as normal.
    SD2 would be a counterstrike. The 6% block/avoid would be raised to 8% with all of that block/avoid range resulting in a retaliatory punch or kick. Obviously at least 1 of the weapons/items slots would have to be empty to qualify. No new animations would be needed so that would be an advantage. Animations for zero range combat misses are already there.
    Commando. Reduces max chance of being hit down from 95% to 94%, Armour Class increases 1%, Normal resistance increases 1%, HP increase by 1, Unarmed, Melee Weapons, and Throwing skills all increase by 1. Every little hel...scratch that! That's a lousy slogan.
    Camouflage. You are harder to see and harder to hit. Ranged adversaries get -1 to their PE for weapons calculation purposes. (I think this currently works out as 8% for pistols and 16% for rifles. I'd like to see those numbers changed in a future chance-to-hit calculation).
    Double Trouble. You have learned to fire identical pistols/machine guns from both hands at the same time. Maybe you don't care...or maybe you're just mean! Late game perk. Obviously this would be problematic as the intimations for each sprite don't exist at the moment.
    Tailor: You can modify your leather armour to allow for up to 3 new tiny Stimpak only slots for instant use during combat. Meh! Better than nothing as a bottom level perk I guess.
     
  16. Sduibek

    Sduibek Creator of Fallout Fixt Moderator Modder

    Oct 27, 2010
    @lostabroad2 @Marionettetc @Vault17

    Try to coordinate / communicate between each other if you can, so that we're not duplicating work. Or even just to bounce ideas off each other, since it seems like all 3 of you are interested in this.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2016
  17. Thermonuclear Damaged Cat

    Thermonuclear Damaged Cat 18 Half Lives

    1
    Oct 16, 2017
    is this still being done, or is it dead?
     
  18. Lexx

    Lexx Testament to the ghoul lifespan
    Moderator Modder

    Apr 24, 2005
    As the last post was from 2015, I'm pretty certain this mod is dead.