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Henchman imbalance in KOTOR2


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In doing some research in preparation for getting the PC version of the game, I notice that some henchies are overpowered while others are underpowered. The stats I am looking at come from Dan Simpson's FAQ ( http://db.gamefaqs.com/console/xbox/file/s..._kotor_ii_a.txt ), and it's possible there could be inaccuracies.

 

A normal character should have 30 attribute points, +1 extra attribute increase for every 4 levels. Yet only 3 of the NPCs seem to be balanced, with the others having either less or more attribute points.

 

If my math is bad or the stats are wrong, I am open to corrections.

 

WINNERS:

 

Hanharr Level 4

STR 20

DEX 13

CON 20

INT 10

WIS 12

CHA 8

Points: 55 Base + 1 attribute increase at level 4 (STR or DEX)

Balance: +25 (!!)

 

Kreia lvl3

STR 10

DEX 16

CON 16

INT 14

WIS 16

CHA 12

Points: 42

Balance: +12

 

Go-To (Level 6)

STR 10

DEX 19

CON 16

INT 16

WIS 10

CHA 10

Points: 42 base + 1 attribute increase (DEX)

Balance: +12

 

Visas (lvl6)

STR 12

DEX 18

CON 12

INT 10

WIS 12

CHA 15

Points: 35 base + 1 stat increase (DEX)

Balance: +5

 

HK-47 (level 6)

STR 16

DEX 16

CON 10

INT 14

WIS 12

CHA 10

Points: 32 base + 1 stat increase (STR or DEX)

Balance: +2

 

EVEN (30 points):

Handmaiden (lvl 6)

 

STR 14

DEX 16

CON 14

INT 10

WIS 10

CHA 14

Points: 30 +1 stat increase (DEX)

 

Disciple (lvl 6)

STR 14

DEX 16

CON 14

INT 10

WIS 10

CHA 14

POINTS: 30 base + 1 stat increase (DEX)

 

Mandalore (level 5)

STR 15

DEX 12

CON 15

INT 12

WIS 12

CHA 12

Points: 30 base +1 stat increase (STR or CON)

 

T3 (level 3)

STR 10

DEX 15

CON 14

INT 16

WIS 10

CHA 10

Points: 30 base

 

LOSERS:

 

Atton lvl3

STR 12

DEX 16

CON 14

INT 10

WIS 10

CHA 12

Points: 28 base

Balance: -2

 

Bao-Dur (Level 6)

STR 14

DEX 10

CON 14

INT 15

WIS 14

CHA 10

Points: 28 base + 1 stat increase (INT)

Balance: -2

 

Bao-Dur would have 30 points if he were level 1-3, but when you take into consideration that he is level 6, he should have gotten the int 14->15 for free with with level-ups as he is beyond level 4. So this is a substandard build.

 

Mira (lvl 6)

STR 10

DEX 16

CON 12

INT 14

WIS 11

CHA 10

Points: 25 base + 1 stat increase (DEX).

Balance: -5 points, it would be hard to get worse than this.

 

 

Now maybe some of this balances out (who cares about CHA and, to a lesser extent, WIS in non-force users?) but I am still hard-pressed to figure out when I would ever want to use a henchie as sucky as Mira when there are others that are so much better? It's a little disappointing that some henchmen builds are substandard while others are uber, lowering the player's incentive to use a variety of characters. Okay, I can understand a few extra points for Hanharr as a wookie who can't use armor and certain other items. Even droids like GoTo 'cuz droids stink. But the others?

 

I would maintain that some of the fighter-types with INT, WIS, and CHA over 10 are also poorly designed (what on earth does Mandalore need 12 in all of these for when none of his combat attributes are over 15 -- as a level 5 soldier?)

 

It also almost makes me want to go dark side because Hanharr is so much better than Mira at baseline, in addition to offering your main character 2 free permanent stat increases. Does anyone really take Mira along and use her? As a potential Jedi, she actually NEEDS her full stat allocation, but is the most disadvantaged of any character in the game (-5 stat points).

 

The next question is whether this was done on purpose, or whether it is just another manifestation of a rushed product that was not completely thought through.

 

Falconhurst

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>Also, most of those NPC's (with the exceptiono of Hanharr, Mandalore and the >Droids) can be used as Jedi - that tends to add a whole new spin on things.

 

But not on the fact that they are imbalanced. My point with Mira is that as a Jedi, she NEEDS the extra points as all attributes are important for force users -- as opposed to wookies who can get by with good STR, CON, and maybe a little DEX only.

 

I don't know which is worse...the fact that some Jedis are so grossly imbalanced either above or below the standard (Kreia has 42 attribute pts, Visas has 35, Mira has 25) or the fact that the game is so dang easy that it doesn't matter which henchies pick, it doesn't matter if you solo, it doesn't matter how poorly you design your own character, it may not even matter if you never bother to pick up a lightsaber and play through the whole game with blasters or vibroswords...

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I don't know which is worse...the fact that some Jedis are so grossly imbalanced either above or below the standard (Kreia has 42 attribute pts, Visas has 35, Mira has 25) or the fact that the game is so dang easy that it doesn't matter which henchies pick, it doesn't matter if you solo, it doesn't matter how poorly you design your own character, it may not even matter if you never bother to pick up a lightsaber and play through the whole game with blasters or vibroswords...

 

id say the latter.

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>Also, most of those NPC's (with the exceptiono of Hanharr, Mandalore and the >Droids) can be used as Jedi - that tends to add a whole new spin on things.

 

But not on the fact that they are imbalanced.  My point with Mira is that as a Jedi, she NEEDS the extra points as all attributes are important for force users -- as opposed to wookies who can get by with good STR, CON, and maybe a little DEX only.

 

I don't know which is worse...the fact that some Jedis are so grossly imbalanced either above or below the standard (Kreia has 42 attribute pts, Visas has 35, Mira has 25) or the fact that the game is so dang easy that it doesn't matter which henchies pick, it doesn't matter if you solo, it doesn't matter how poorly you design your own character, it may not even matter if you never bother to pick up a lightsaber and play through the whole game with blasters or vibroswords...

Also, add in: It doesn't matter what difficutly setting you select, 'cause the AI is still gonna stink like a dysenteric rat's ass.

manthing2.jpg
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Wookiees gain the racial adjustment of +4 strength, -2 dex/wis/cha, so Hanharr's not quite so far-out.

 

It looks like the characters were imagined using unweighted point-buy (though that doesn't make them even either), which would be fine with me if the PC could use unweighted point-buy too. Meh.

I am following my fish.

 

A temporary home for stranded ML'ers

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Well your npc's are not supposed to be balanced. The reason you have a group of companions is to have someone help you against the baddies yes, but also to help make up for your early deficuncy in certain areas of your char development. ie: a guardian may not be very good at security so Atton helps balance this. Also it is a little pointless to have a group of people that are all good at the same thing. That would be like the NAVY seals having all demolitions experts.

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>It looks like the characters were imagined using unweighted point-buy

 

No, they use weighted point buy (disciple, handmaiden, etc); otherwise the list of deficient characters would be a lot longer. Any way you look at it, some like Mira are grossly deficient while others are "uber."

 

>Wookiees gain the racial adjustment of +4 strength, -2 dex/wis/cha, so >Hanharr's not quite so far-out.

 

It still is...with the adjustments you noted, Hanharr's base (pre-wookie adjustments, pre-level 4) would be:

 

STR 16

DEX 15

CON 19

INT 10

WIS 14

CHA 10

Base points: 47

(+17 over norm)

 

Somehow that didn't seem to help much.

 

>Well your npc's are not supposed to be balanced. The reason you have a group >of companions is to have someone help you against the baddies yes, but also to >help make up for your early deficuncy in certain areas of your char >development. ie: a guardian may not be very good at security so Atton helps >balance this. Also it is a little pointless to have a group of people that are all >good at the same thing. That would be like the NAVY seals having all demolitions >experts.

 

You are confusing the concepts of "balance" (characters are designed in harmony with specific rules) and variety or diversity. Characters can be "balanced" or fair and still have diverse skills and abilities that complement the PC in very different ways. A tech, a scout, a soldier, a sentinel, an expert droid, and a scoundrel can still be fair and "balanced" in the sense of playing by the rules and getting the appropriate stat point allocation, without having those points allocated to identical attributes or skills. Iam not complaining about a lack of diversity among NPCs, but about the gross imbalances.

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1) "Imagined," not built, as if they wanted to create characters without the absurd, meaningless restrictions of weighted point-buy, which I can certainly understand. The characters still turn out uneven even then, though, which is kinda sad. Poor, poor Mira.

 

2) I said not quite so far-out, not un-far-out.

I am following my fish.

 

A temporary home for stranded ML'ers

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>"Imagined," not built, as if they wanted to create characters without the absurd, >meaningless restrictions of weighted point-buy, which I can certainly understand.

 

So they create characters that are absurd and meaningless in their design because they adhere to no clear design principles at all, heightening any imbalance that the whole point of the weighted stat system is to prevent. Some NPCs are "uber," others get the shaft.

 

>2) I said not quite so far-out, not un-far-out.

 

I don't think anyone quoted you as "un-far-out." I cited your quote as:

 

>so Hanharr's not quite so far-out.

 

which seems to quote you accurately. Anyway, unweighted points, racial modifiers, and other explanations make little mileage towards explaining gross weighted and unweighted discrepancies in NPC attributes.

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