Discrepancy between movement and ranged attacks on diagonals.

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zephyr127
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2024 1:28 am

Discrepancy between movement and ranged attacks on diagonals.

#1 Post by zephyr127 »

Attacking enemies diagonally with ranged attacks is less efficient than attacking them orthogonally (north south east or west) due to a difference between movement and range. Units can move diagonally just as quickly as they can orthogonally, but ranged attacks are limited similarly to vision. This means that you can attack an enemy more times before they reach you if they are mostly horizontally or vertically aligned with you. For example a spell or weapon with range 5 can attack 4 times before the enemy reaches us. However, when aiming diagonally our range is effectively reduced to 3 due to the fourth tile being range 6 away from us, this allows only 2 attacks before the enemy reaches us.

I am not sure how to improve this without encountering issues elsewhere with vision or movement. This is also not much of a problem with longer ranged spells and weapons, as with range 10 you will be able to attack as far as you can see with your default vision range. Ultimately the problem is units move to quickly diagonally due to moving only one tile per turn. A tile that is 2 diagonal tiles away shows as being at range 3 and a tile 1 diagonal away is range 1, however when we move to that first tile the second is now only 1 range away giving us an equation of 3-1=1. Perhaps if it took more of a turn to move diagonally this could be balanced (for example taking 3 turns to move the 2 diagonal tiles as it is range 3 away, so 1.5 turns per diagonal move, but to me this sounds to harsh of a punishment for diagonal movement).

I haven't any clear ideas what could be done differently as this seems to just be a reality of grid based combat, but I would love to hear any thoughts from you. Is this something even worth trying to address?

PseudoLoneWolf
Wyrmic
Posts: 251
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2017 7:12 pm

Re: Discrepancy between movement and ranged attacks on diagonals.

#2 Post by PseudoLoneWolf »

1.5 turns per diagonal move sounds perfectly reasonable to me. That's how most tabletop games deal with it if they insist on a grid map and haven't elected to use hexagons. Now with ToME having not been designed with this in mind, with current balance it might step on some toes and the general meta will undoubtedly change a little. But there's nothing saying that a mod implementing this wouldn't work fine if given appropriate consideration by the mod author and user.

Personally, I just find it fine the way it is. I was originally surprised to find that diagonal movement did not involve any additional costs over orthogonal movement but after realizing this I just accepted it as one of the odd quirks of ToME. I think most folks have done the same at this point. That's not to say that it could never be changed but I never really saw a reason to insist on it being changed.
Let slip the toast of war.

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