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Monk fist base damage too high?

monk fist damage

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#1
Raevyn

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Greetings fellow watchers :)
 
I'm a little concerned about monk unarmed base damage:
 
Short version:
 
Monk fist base damage are basically like dual wielding 2 greatswords, with the accuracy and attack speed of daggers, while penetrating like an estoc (a weapon specialized specifically for piercing armor). It's only bludgeon yes, but up to 11 pen + scaling.
 
Fist base damage should perhaps be more in line with 2 clubs rather than super all-round weapons?
- or perhaps a timed damage increase, like empowered fist for 20-30 sec? 
 
My main gripe with the current implementation is that it makes any other heavy weapon wielding class look like wet noodles in baseline comparison, especially early game and also makes Xoti's sickle subpar.
 
Granted, It's still early game, but feeling a bit forced to ditch any other weapon but Xoti's fists, which outshine every other party members damage currently.
 
 
 
Long version:
 
Pardon up front for a bit of a rant, but here goes..
 
I was trying to decide which weapon to use on Xoti as a contemplative (priest+monk) and while while doing some basic auto attack testing, noticed that when removing her sickle she would out damage any other wielded  weapon. 
 
In fact, her unarmed fist damage would outperform any other weapon base damage on any character, even without spending a single skill point in weapon style or damage increase. (I'm talking low levels here, where the base weapon mechanics are most obvious)
Xoti is the only party member who can easily beat down Eder in full fighter tank setup/gear, even out of combat. 
Her monk fist alone are basically like she is dual wielding 2 two-handed swords, with the accuracy and attack speed of daggers, while penetrating like an estoc (a weapon specialized specifically for piercing armor). 
 
Now, I understand that the monk traditional class fantasy is to be kick-ass throwing punches and such
(which I personally always found a bit out of place in a setting with heavy armor, weaponry and firearms - but hey, it's all "soul magic", so oh well)
 
My main gripe with the current implementation is that it makes any other heavy weapon wielding class seem a bit like wet noodles in comparison, especially early game and also makes Xoti's sickle subpar.
Ex, my (fairly high acc) ranger with greatsword + two-handed style + proficiency (savage attack) can hardly hit/dent Eder at all, while the bare-fisted Xoti happily hammers him down in seconds. I know greatswords are very dependent and best on soft targets etc, it just "feels" and looks wrong in relation.
 
I'd agree that the base unarmed damage of monks fists should be slightly higher than default, maybe on par with a pair of clubs - but not on par with two-handers, and certainly not with nearly twice the penetration values, without using any ability. Who Would like to attempt to punch a guy/gal wearing full plate? ouch..
 
I find it is (sadly) often the case that monk is implemented as an all-round super high damage dealing class in games - why not have it depend more on sustained and precise but lower-damage hits, a lot of interrupts/stuns with build-up kill moves to represent the high martial skill of a fighting monk? Very effective vs softer targets. The game already has most of this - but on top of the out of place high base damage/pen on fists. Yes, it's bludgeon, but what does it matter if the pen can go to 11 (and scaling up)
 
Equippable knuckle-dusters to add a +pen or two which can gear-scale slightly could perhaps have been a thing, but probably too drastic change. Maybe have a monk specific unarmed passive to specialize in fists, so weapon wielding monks do not feel like missing out on the class main bonuses.
 
Heck, I'd even be totally fine with the high fist damage if it was a baseline 20-30 sec ability, something like "soul empowered fists" for a nice damage burst period (essentially like instant spiritual weapon summon) - which would also allow for weapon monks to deal out some knuckle-justice once in awhile..
 
 
I'm guessing some of the explanations might go along the lines of "gear-scaling  and legendary bonuses on weapons will offset this later in the game", but that is not really comforting if the underlying base seem unrealistic and skewed in this case. There must be other ways to make it seem less "implausible".
 
The PoE combat system is otherwise doing a nice weapon/armor simulation on a base mechanical level (which is awesome!) but the unarmed monk dmg feel a bit like Fist of the North Star thrown into the mix. I generally love PoE for some of it's emphasis on good martial weapon combat, where you select the best tools for the job, consider weapon/armor types etc.
 
I really want to like the monk class (usually don't most fantasy games) without it feeling OP, and do love it so far, the ability path & wound mechanic, just wish it not to overshadow the more "realistic" weapon wielders and weapon type decisions. 
 
 
Anyways, enough of a rant, and perhaps things will balance out over time, enjoying the game so far after the increased PoTD dif in 1.1, hope everyone else is too :)
 
 
Sidenote: two-handed greatswords should probably have +1 pen due to the non-tapered blade mass (and since no +pen modal option, as well as the fact that it does not have longer reach, which would be it's main advantage) 
 

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#2
Shadenuat

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I thought rogues were op, then I rolled a helwalker monk with fists. Manages to keep up statistically by damage with min maxed Evoker. Oh wow.



#3
Climhazzard

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Fists have nothing but damage, other weapons have all kinds of unique abilities.  Most of what Monk's can bring to a multi class combination has already been heavily nerfed, and multi classed fists barely scale better than legendary weapons by endgame.

 

Right now they bring status resistance (clarity of agony), intellect bonuses, small lash and action speed bonuses, fist damage, and fortitude targeting primary attacks that use wounds resource.  I don't see any reason to nerf fist damage considering rogues were buffed last patch and bring a much bigger damage multiplier that still applies to spells.

 

And yeah Xoti's fists are better than her sickle, but it uses 2 damage types and can be upgraded to have huge action speed bonuses after you finish her quest line, at endgame it compares just fine.


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#4
evilcat

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Do you have some comparison to legendary boomsticks of doom?

Dont know what is top tool now. Double Modwyr? Magran Flavour?

As long as monk fist are just another legendary weapon nothing to see here.

2H sticks... they deserve better.



#5
Shadenuat

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Before you get your supah swords which after sawyer spring cleaning are not so supah anymore, monk will already do a lot of damage with fists. Damage and penetration is what you need to kills potd mobs, and many mobs with upscaled armor are vulnerable to crush damage, so monk does great against them. And it's not like you can't give monk whatever you want at any time you want. It's just that you also always have scaling dual hammers with great damage.


Edited by Shadenuat, 12 June 2018 - 10:45 AM.


#6
Myztik

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Fists have nothing but damage, other weapons have all kinds of unique abilities.  Most of what Monk's can bring to a multi class combination has already been heavily nerfed, and multi classed fists barely scale better than legendary weapons by endgame.

 

Right now they bring status resistance (clarity of agony), intellect bonuses, small lash and action speed bonuses, fist damage, and fortitude targeting primary attacks that use wounds resource.  I don't see any reason to nerf fist damage considering rogues were buffed last patch and bring a much bigger damage multiplier that still applies to spells.

 

And yeah Xoti's fists are better than her sickle, but it uses 2 damage types and can be upgraded to have huge action speed bonuses after you finish her quest line, at endgame it compares just fine.

Nobody cares about a 3 Raw damage DoT or 20% lash damage or a Chill Fog when scoring a Crit when you can just punch something and kill it before any of that matters. 'Other weapons have abilities' is not really a good reason in this current iteration of gameplay


Edited by Myztik, 12 June 2018 - 11:04 AM.


#7
Raevyn

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In terms of game balance I never consider anything in terms of buffs or nerfs, whichever produces the best mechanical gameplay is always to be preferred. It seems a lot of people are generally afraid of having their abilities rebalanced, even if it makes sense to do so for a harder to achieve but more enjoyable and rewarding outcome.
 
If I see an ability obviously outperforming others, I feel bad about using it, it feels "cheesy" - and also feels bad not to use it cause you are gimping yourself.  What I like is when gear and abilities feel meaningful somewhat based in realistic physics and is well emulated in game mechanics, and useful in combination with other actions.
 
For example, I don't mind that a greatsword has high damage, but low accuracy and bad penetration - if i can produce a situation where it shines. It forces you to use tactical combinations, not just look at the raw numbers in isolation.
 
As a ranger(+chanter), if I mark a target, the priest casts +perc Blessing, and another party member can lower targets armor, the pet uses takedown for even lower deflection - now the greatsword swing (with something like accurate wounding shot + savage strike) has a  real good chance of hitting and doing high damage. I personally like doing such setups much more rather than simply looking at flat damage numbers. I've always felt like the high damage needs to be earned rather than baselined, and it feels good when it pays off :)
 
Admittedly I'm generally not a huge fan of too much high-magic stuff such as superswords/legendary/enchantments/magic effects - and using that as a bar for how to balance the underlying system. It usually ends up skewing all balancing too much. I mean, because some epic sword procs fireballs of doom +5 somewhere lategame, does not justify that a fist punch needs to do near fireball of doom levels of damage to keep up. I'd much prefer to see changes that provides ways to create setups/combos, while keeping the base numbers semi reasonable. I've always thought a cool aspect of PoE battles is just the metal on metal fighting, without too many firework procs :)
 
There are lot of ways fists could be useful rather than pure flat damage, it's a question of design. Monk's fist attack could have interrupt chance, his attack hits could stack up accuracy or damage ramp-up, stacking debuff - to just come up with a few. Wounds already represent a similar buildup mechanic. So what if rogues do more damage - I'd expect them to - they are rogues, they don't have the same persistence as monks :p
 
It just seems a bit offputting to me to send a monk with their bare hands to punch a heavily armored target and then watching them hit like two-handed sledge hammers. I'd feel ok with them hitting reliably like noodles for a time, maybe causing some lockdown and ramp up to a finisher. Overall damage can come in a variety of ways, high fist base damage need not be it, it just doesn't feel right in relation to other heavy weapons.
 
Again, not really talking about late game balance, where all sorts of unique abilities and procs factor in, just prefer the base values make sense, that's all.


#8
KDubya

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In your comparison you have fists that have the level bonuses for Transcendent Suffering which adds +2 pen and +35% damage to mundane plain clubs, Great Swords and Estocs. Grab some Fine or Exceptional weapons and its a lot closer. Also you are looking at Xoti's output just after she achieved one of the milestone level ups that increased her Transcendent Suffering; her damage output will be the same for the next four levels or so.

 

Fists do base damage that is 16.5 average compared to a slow one hander like a battle axe at 16.0 average damage. They do have the speed of a fast speed dagger so its 16.5 at 3.0 second recovery compared to a battle axe 16.0 at 4.0 second recovery.

 

Are fists good? yes

 

Are fists comparable to weapons? yes

 

Are fists better than the special abilities that soul bound and fully enchanted legendaries get? no

 

If you make fists the same as plain clubs no one would ever use them.

 

Also this is a game with dragons, zombies, gods and wizards. Having monks being able to punch through armor is low on the scale of the unrealistic :) 



#9
dunehunter

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A min-maxed monk’s fist will do almost same damage as legendary greatsword. And much higher penetration.

If u didn’t min-max it then no. The transecdent suffering is tied to your power level so if u manage to stack it super high yeah fist has more damage than great sword, and fast weapon attack speed.

I don’t think the OP’s comparison is unfair, since he is comparing using lvl 1 characters. Fist does have bonus that time, but even in late game, fist has more bonus than normal legendary weapons.

Edited by dunehunter, 12 June 2018 - 04:19 PM.


#10
KDubya

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A min-maxed monk’s fist will do almost same damage as legendary greatsword. And much higher penetration.

If u didn’t min-max it then no. The transecdent suffering is tied to your power level so if u manage to stack it super high yeah fist has more damage than great sword, and fast weapon attack speed.

I don’t think the OP’s comparison is unfair, since he is comparing using lvl 1 characters. Fist does have bonus that time, but even in late game, fist has more bonus than normal legendary weapons.

 

In my  saves with Xoti as a multiclass Monk/Priest her fist damage was 18-24 at level five and at level nine. This is what +20% from Transcendent Suffering gets you. I'm not sure if its lower at level four or higher at level 10 as I don't have a save at that level and don't care enough to level up a hireling and take notes :)

 

A greatsword has bad base penetration at 6 with Fists being 7. So its the worst weapon for comparing penetration to. Also a greatsword has an average base damage of 21 which is 27% higher than what the base damage of a fist is.

 

The highest Transcendent Suffering bonus that I've seen is 80% with a Nature Godlike under Wellspring of Life, Prestige and gave the souls to Woedica. I suppose a near dead Death godlike could get some more but …. Anyway The maxed out Monk at max level gets to 29.7 average damage and a Legendary Great Sword gets to 33.6 average damage, which is 13% higher for the sword and the sword gets who knows what as the magical abilities imbued. The fist is ahead at 13 pen vs 10 but the Greatsword does have dual damage types which makes it about equal.

 

So in summary fists are good but Great Swords do more damage both at level one and at max level.

 

 

 

P.S. I discovered that the extra powerlevel from Nature Godlike no longer increases Transcendent Suffering so no reason to be a Nature Godlike Monk anymore. Not sure if this is from the change to +1 from +2 or if the progression of Transcendent Suffering has been tweaked. I do remember seeing +95% damage before the last patch instead of +80%

 

EDIT - With a multiclass Transcendent Suffering can get to the next level at level 19 with a Nature Godlike with Wellspring, +65% So Nature Godlike still might be beneficial for a multiclass Monk or a single class who doesn't take Prestige at 19 or 20.


Edited by KDubya, 12 June 2018 - 06:49 PM.


#11
dunehunter

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Don't forget there are potion that increase your PL, and amulet of stone that increase PL, I said it's min-maxed monk for fist. A not min-maxed monk cannot get greatsword equal damage on his fist.



#12
AndreaColombo

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Honestly I don’t think the game should be balanced around edge-cases and min/maxing.

#13
Boeroer

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Well, removing those min/maxed (ridiculous) things should also be on the balancing list, but it shouldn't be balanced by nerfing the corresponding ability/item generally. Just take off the edges/spikes. Then it's ok. Like preventing Swift Flurry from recursive procs and AoE hits and NOT lowering its chance to trigger or removing it from ranged attacks so that it becomes just bad for normal, non-min-maxed monks.

Edited by Boeroer, 12 June 2018 - 10:38 PM.

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