Research:Dust Devil

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Duration

Devils were summoned with no visible positive or negative ritual modifiers, apart from (for some) already controlling one or more minions (The easiest way to do this is to go a journey or two away from a place with a temple. Or, for Sek or Hat, use your passage room).

Time was determined by checking the client's timestamps of "The wind picks up a bit and starts swirling...." and "...dissipates into nothingness." If there's only one duration instead of a range, they were all the same.

Existing minions of.ar mi.ar Size Duration Number timed
0 237 327 colossal 6:22 2
1 237 327 gigantic 5:51 - 5:52 2
0 311 339 enormous 6:40 - 6:43 4
1 311 339 colossal 6:13 - 6:14 5
2 311 339 huge 5:46 - 5:51 5
0 182 302 gigantic 6:02 3
0 241 253 gigantic 6:06 - 6:08 2
1 241 253 huge 5:34 2
0 184 231 huge 5:46 3
0 276 302 colossal 6:26 - 6:27 3
1 276 302 gigantic 5:55 - 5:57 3
0 236 285 gigantic 6:14 2
0 179 201 huge 5:38 - 5:39 2

Priest's skills and devil abilities

Objective: Find out if and how the three different area skills affect devils' combat abilities (how often they hit and how much damage they do, and how well they dodge).

Method: Have devils created with low bonuses in all three skills fight someone (in the ctf arena) for about an hour total, healing the player and the devils whenever they're injured. Advance one skill, repeat. Advance another skill, repeat. Advance final skill, repeat. Go through the logs (with a script) and count up the hits and misses for both, keeping track of the damage that devils' hits did (where possible).

Sets:

  • Set #1: Devils created with a 180 or 182 bonus in of.ar, 80 de.ar, and 215 mi.ar.
  • Set #2: Mi.ar increased: Devils created with a 180 or 182 bonus in of.ar, 80 de.ar, and 302 mi.ar.
  • Set #3: Of.ar increased: Devils created with a 276 bonus in of.ar, 80 de.ar, and 302 mi.ar.
  • Set #4: De.ar increased: Devils created with a 276 bonus in of.ar, 239 de.ar, and 302 mi.ar.

Sets #2, #3, and #4 were actually done in two sessions, and set #2 actually had two characters creating the devils (I wanted to go back and do more, but had already advanced, so made another character, gave her the same stats, and advanced her skills to the same levels). Also, there was an of.ar tm during set #1, which carried over to part of set #2. This probably doesn't matter, though. We took the following steps to try to eliminate sources of error:

  • The person fighting the devils kept the same tactics and used the same weapon throughout, as well as wearing the same equipment (to keep burden constant).
  • We only did this during the day, to avoid penalties due to darkness.
  • He only fought the devils themselves, not me.
  • He didn't use any armour, so that we could get the damage for the devil's hits.

A possible source of error that we couldn't eliminate entirely was the varying degrees of injury that he and the devils had throughout. While I tried not to let either of them get too injured, this wasn't entirely successful, and I ended up dismissing the devil and waiting for gp to heal him and make a new devil fairly frequently. However, degree of injury didn't seem to make much difference in whether he hit or was hit by the devils.

Also, sometimes I got frost, mud, etc. dust devils along with the usual dust ones, because of the weather. These didn't seem any different, though.

Summary table

- Set 1 Set 2 Set 3 Set 4
Number of times devil hit 447 494 552 487
Number of times devil missed 292 261 250 199
Percentage of time devil hit 60% 65% 69% 71%
Number of times devil avoided being hit 156 150 167 138
Number of times devil was hit 391 416 355 303
Percentage of time devil avoided being hit 29% 27% 32% 31%
Mean damage of resolvable hits 70 80 97 100
Damage range of resolvable hits 15 - 168 20 - 203 21 - 232 27 - 279
Damage range of resolvable hits minus highest hit and lowest hit[1] 16 - 161 22 - 184 23 - 205 31 - 204
Number of resolvable hits 406 418 460 390
Number of unresolvable hits 41 76 92 97

Percentages are rounded to the nearest percent here, and mean damage is rounded to the nearest hitpoint.

A hit was "resolvable" if it was between two monitors, and no other hits or healing were between the same two monitors. If the devil hit twice in a row without a monitor between the hits, it was obviously impossible to tell how much damage either one did, and if I finished healing him before the next monitor kicked in (a major culprit of unresolvable hits), it was likewise impossible to tell.


Conclusions

Increasing of.area appears to increase the amount of damage they deal, and help them hit more often.

Increasing misc.area appears to increase the amount of damage they deal, and help them hit more often.

Increasing de.area appears to have no effect, or else a very small one.

Hit types and damages

These are from all of the sets combined, and may be of some interest if you want to know approximately how much damage a dust devil's hits are probably doing. Since the messages may indicate percentages and not numbers of hitpoints, both exact damage and percentage damage is included.

Of course, these are only for the skill ranges specified above, so they don't include any higher-level damage messages that may exist, and likely have a lower maximum than is possible. They also don't include the different-looking attacks that some types of devils have.

Message Damage range  % range Mean Mean % times appeared specific type, if any
The <whirlwind> attempts to whip you with some debris but your skin absorbs some of the blow. 15 - 22 1.1 - 1.6 20 1.5 8
The <whirlwind> blows on you causing you to stumble. 29 - 64 2.2 - 4.8 50 3.7 59
The <whirlwind> caresses you with some dirty air. 36 - 43 2.7 - 3.2 40 2.9 2
The <whirlwind> chokes you with <material>. 52 - 106 3.9 - 7.9 80 6.0 27
The <whirlwind> nicks you but your skin absorbs some of the blow. 18 - 24 1.3 - 1.8 21 1.6 5 ice
The <whirlwind> nicks you. 20 - 128 1.5 - 9.5 65 4.8 38 ice
The <whirlwind> pummels you with strong winds. 57 - 131 4.2 - 9.8 97 7.2 59
The <whirlwind> shoves a large chunk of debris down your throat. 98 - 279 7.3 - 20.8 166 12.3 99
The <whirlwind> slices bits off you. 37 - 120 2.8 - 8.9 77 5.7 13 ice
The <whirlwind> swirls around you making your <body part> hurt. 87 - 192 6.5 - 14.3 127 9.4 60
The <whirlwind> swirls some dirt into your <body part>. 29 - 63 2.2 - 4.7 42 3.2 139
The <whirlwind> whips up a really nice piece of debris and slams you with it. 48 - 138 3.6 - 10.3 88 6.6 878
The <whirlwind> whips your <body part> with some debris but your skin absorbs some of the blow. 19 - 29 1.4 - 2.2 23 1.7 21
The <whirlwind> whips your <body part> with some debris. 20 - 41 1.5 - 3.1 30 2.3 116
The <whirlwind>'s swirling winds spin you in circles. 82 - 203 6.1 - 15.1 130 9.7 150

More

Anyone who's curious can find the lists of actions and starting hitpoints here:

And here's a list of just the dust devils' resolvable attacks from all sets, with damage:

Footnotes

  1. In other words, minus a few outliers.