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Item Stats Guide

Page history last edited by Little Alien 11 years, 6 months ago

Item Stats Guide

 

The Enhanced Description Box may seem pretty daunting at first. For some items it displays as much as 10 times more data than we used to get. For other items, we used to get NO data at all! A lot of data can therefore seem confusing.

The choice to use icons instead of words for each data value is due to lack of space. But while icons may sometimes appear confusing, they are each accompanied with a helpful text tooltip that explains what value is associated with each icon. It takes very little time to learn most icons, as most of them are pretty intuitive. For others, you can always use the tooltip.

Regardless, I've chosen to write this Stats Guide to help us all identify these icons. This guide will cover all the possible icons in the new Description Box, and more importantly also tries to explain the nature of each value.

 

DISCLAIMER / WARNING:

This guide can be EXTREMELY confusing to read. The main reason for this is that the inner-workings of the game are themselves pretty f***ing complicated. They are hard to understand even if you can read the program itself, and some things are so complex that no one actually knows how they work yet. That's what you get when a lot of people work on the same code. But it's understandable, and the game's still fun.

So the bottom line is - if you don't understand, don't worry about it. Some of the stuff here is pretty straight-forward and should be almost self-explanatory.

 

WEAPON-SPECIFIC AND WEAPON-RELATED PROPERTIES

Most of the stats described below are actual weapon properties that are unique to weapons. In "weapons" I mean Guns, Knives, Grenade Launchers, Rocket Launchers, Throwing Weapons, and Blunt Weapons. For instance, "Range" or "Burst Size" are properties that only weapons (and only SOME weapons) can have.

This section isn't limited to weapon-specific data though. Some properties (like damage) are common to several types of items, and are best explained all in a bunch, rather than explained separately in other parts of this guide.

Also, many of the stats here are actually MODIFIERS to weapon values, given by weapon attachments and/or ammo. Again, they're explained here and not later because they're easier to understand in this context.



A weapon's RANGE determines how far the gun can shoot before the bullet begins to drop dramatically due to air resistance. The actual formula that determines chance-to-hit handles range in many different ways all the at the same time. But most importantly, any shot beyond the gun's range will decrease CtH by HALF! Therefore, the farther you want to shoot, the longer a weapon's range should be.



WEAPON RANGE MODIFIERS represent an increase or decrease to the weapon's range. Increases (bonuses) are currently given only by Gun Barrel Extenders and by Match Ammo. Decreases (penalties) are only gived by Lockbusting ammo (for shotguns). Other items in the future may also give this modifier.



DAMAGE is a somewhat deceiving value, so I'll try to explain properly.

The damage value of a gun indicates how much power the bullet has when it is fired. This is called the bullet's "potential", based on the power of the weapon, the weight of the bullet, and the amount of gunpowder inside it. However, this doesn't indicate how much damage will actually be done to the target. The actual damage is based on many other factors, especially bullet properties and the target's armor, as will be seen in the ammo and armor data sections, below.

For knives and blunt weapons, this is somewhat different, because they usually ignore armor. But the damage they do is also modified by the character's strength and other qualities, etc. etc., so it's not going to be the actual damage done either.

Explosives also do damage, and that too is calculated in very complex formulae like the above. Gas damage tends to be more consistent than explosive blasts though, in terms of how much damage the gas deals each turn. Range from the center of the explosion tends to be the most decisive factor.

Therefore, the damage displayed is just an indicator we can use to compare items. A hand-grenade will usually do much more damage than a mini-grenade, and of course an RPG rocket tends to make blood run in the streets. Even minute differences can be influential, so compare this value carefully. Just don't expect the weapon to do the exact amount of damage listed, or the same amount of damage every time!

Item Comparison Note: Some guns, like grenade launchers, rocket launchers, and mortars, fire explosives instead of ammo. In this case, the grenade/warhead has all the explosive properties, while the launcher itself shows no "damage" value. That's because a gun's damage potential is only relevant when firing ammunition, but not explosives. For Single-Shot rocket launchers (the type that turn into "discarded items" after being fired, like LAW rockets), this is different - the explosion will always mimic that of C1 (the bomb created by merging C4 and RDX Crystals). The difference between single-shot launchers is therefore only in their range, accuracy, etc., never in the actual damage they do.



DAMAGE MODIFIERS naturally increase or decrease the amount of damage done by a weapon. Currently, they can only be given by weapon attachments. For instance, a "sniper scope 10x" adds +2 damage to any shot. Again, this is subject to MANY complex calculations, but obviously increasing a weapon's damage potential is always a good thing!



Some explosives also do additional STUN DAMAGE. This is damage applied directly to one's stamina, rather than health. Like most attacks, the "basic" damage delivered by the explosive is also likely to hurt stamina as well, and "Stun Damage" is just an extra blow to stamina. In many cases, this extra blow can greatly help knock the target out cold. Some explosives (like stun grenades) deal ONLY stamina-damage. They do not hurt the target's health, only their stamina. That's why they're called "STUN" grenades!



Note that MELEE DAMAGE has a separate modifier. I'm not sure exactly how this works, because no items currently have MELEE DAMAGE modifiers!



ACCURACY is a property unique to guns and launchers. It indicates a flat bonus to your Chance to Hit, with any shot. However, the Chance-to-Hit formula is complicated, so you might get a lower actual bonus. It is still much a more direct bonus than others that affect CtH (more on this below).

So, in optimal conditions, a shot from a pistol with +2 accuracy is 1 point more likely to hit than a shot from a pistol with +1 accuracy, before taking into account later calculations.

Also note that while the icon looks similar to that of "To-Hit Modifiers" (described below), these are two different factors that work in a similar way, but not exactly the same.

Code note: Accuracy is never actually changed by anything. All other modifiers of Change-to-Hit are called "To-Hit Modifiers" and are handled differently. Accuracy is inherent to the gun, and only plays one other role, in determining maximum bonus from extra aiming (together with several other factors).



TO-HIT MODIFIER is a flat chance-to-hit bonus which gets added to each and every shot (or, a penalty detracted from each and every shot). Like the weapon's accuracy described above, a weapon with +1 to-hit bonus is 1 point more likely to hit with any attack, before taking into account later bonuses. I call it a modifier, not a bonus, because it doesn't always have to be positive.

To-Hit modification is most often given to a weapon through its attachments. Ammo can also potentially give a to-hit modifier, but no ammo types actually do this yet.

Some guns have an inherent to-hit penalty. Many weapons have a -1 value here, indicating a tad poorer accuracy of the gun. I believe this is meant to represent the slightly lower accuracy of weapons firing large-caliber ammunition, but I'm not completely sure about that.

The most important items that give a to-hit bonus are LASERS. These babies can give a whole lot of it too, often +20 chance-to-hit!
There's a catch though. All lasers come with a "best laser range" which limits the range at which you get this awesome bonus.

I'll explain that in a moment, but you must understand that this is what makes To-Hit Modifiers different from a gun's inherent "Accuracy" value. All items in the game as of now that give To-Hit Bonuses are in fact LASERS. And because the to-hit modifier depends on another value (the laser's optimal range), it must treated differently from the weapon's straightforward "accuracy".



I'll cover BEST LASER RANGE now, because it's closely related to To-Hit modifiers.
This value tells us the distance within which our laser works when it is fully repaired. If the target is beyond this range, the To-Hit bonus we actually get becomes smaller and smaller, and beyond a certain range it can simply disappear. Also, if the laser is damaged, its status affects how much of the To-Hit bonus we actually get.

Therefore, we have to take range and laser condition into account when we try to think how much to-hit bonus the weapon actually gets. I can't show the REAL value in the Enhanced Description Box, because it depends on things that are never constant (range to target!!!). Since all bonus-giving items are lasers at the moment, this can't be said to be an "accuracy" bonus. Accuracy is handled in a so much simpler fashion.

Aside from lasers, other items also modify the To-Hit bonus: mainly ARMOR. Heavy armor can be extremely uncomfortable, and if loaded up with ceramic plates or titanium it can become even worse, giving close to or over -10 Chance-to-Hit! Unfortunately, a negative value isn't mitigated by anything. There are no lasers that give to-hit PENALTY (thank god for that though). So when looking at items that give negative To-Hit, remember that this is a direct, flat penalty to accuracy, not dependant on range to target or anything else!!! Same goes for that -1 penalty on some weapons.

Please note that if two lasers are installed on the same weapon, the value shown would be the AVERAGE best laser range from these two items. At the moment, the items are configured so that you can't attach two lasers to one weapon, but in the future this could change.



AIMING BONUS is the increase to Chance-to-Hit that you get when you right-click to aim better. --BZZZZZ-- Wrong answer. That used to be the case, but in 1.13 things have changed drastically. Nowadays, there are many factors that go into the final calculation of bonus with each right-click, and "Aiming Bonus" is only a part of the final result. Naturally, increase this to get better aiming! :D But if the bonus is +5, don't expect to get 5 ctH bonus for every right-click. Range, again, plays the biggest part.



The Aiming Bonus can be MODIFIED - it is normally increased by scopes, but other items can decrease it. For instance, a ghillie suit decreases the bonus you get for each AP spent on extra aiming.



Our "Aiming Bonuses" don't actually kick in unless the target is sufficiently far away from us. The MINIMUM RANGE FOR AIMING BONUS tells us exactly how far away the target has to be. If the target is any closer than this range (shown in TILES), then the weapon's aiming bonus is completely ignored.



BIPOD BONUS gives two important benefits. First, it increases the chance-to-hit of any shot fired, by a certain flat amount. This works almost exactly like a regular "Accuracy" or "To-Hit" bonus. Additionally, it also reduces the Burst/Autofire penalty by the same amount, making these modes of fire much more accurate and hence deadly.

However, in order to receive either of these bonuses, the character must be in the PRONE position. That's all there is to it, really!

Note that it's possible for the Bipod "Bonus" to be a negative value. No items do this yet.



BURST/AUTO PENALTY, like a "To-Hit Bonus" (explained above), is a direct and mostly flat PENALTY to the Chance-to-Hit of any bullet after the first, when shooting in burst or auto mode. If the value here is -2, then the first shot is fired with no penalty, the second with -2, the third with -4, and so on and so on until the burst is over. This is called a PENALTY because it can NEVER go above 0, not even with foregrips and tracer bullets that help to overcome it.

A weapon's burst and auto penalties are actually almost never the same value. Burst penalty is usually much less severe. There aren't many weapons that have both burst and auto capabilities though. Trigger groups can install burst mode on some weapons. If this does occur, it's the Burst Penalty that gets displayed, not the Auto Penalty! This is very important because some weapons that have both firing modes will have the burst penalty significantly LOWER than auto, which makes them very cool! You'll be wanting to shoot bursts on these!



AUTOFIRE SHOTS PER 5 AP: After paying the initial value shown in "AP COSTS TO AUTOFIRE" (read about that below), you can keep paying more APs to fire more bullets, limited only by how many APs you've got, and how many bullets are actually left in the gun. Each 5 AP you spend will add this many bullets. Because you spend APs one at a time though, this can get a bit confusing. There's no choice though, unless I want to display fractional values, which I don't. :) At least not now. :D

Gameplay Tip: Controlling burst fire is pretty difficult, and only a true master can reliably "tell" his weapon exactly how many shots to fire. You'll often notice that when using Autofire mode, your character may fire more bullets than intended. If this happens, the character WILL spend extra APs to fire those unwanted bullets! Of course, the total is limited to how many APs the character actually has, and how many bullets are left in the magazine.



LOUDNESS shows the intensity of the noise created when the gun fires. I'm not sure how this value is actually calculated, but it's clear that the lower it is, the more silent your gunfire will be. Close to 20 appears to be pretty quiet. 80 will let the whole world know you're spitting lead!

Explosives also have this icon. Most gas grenades make no sound. TNT makes... well, a racket.



Naturally, silencers (called "Noise Suppressors" or just "Suppressors") will reduce this value, often dramatically, with the LOUDNESS MODIFIER percentage. It's better when in NEGATIVE values, as it reduces the noise of the gun by a certain percentage.



MUZZLE FLASH (ON/OFF): This icon shows whether the gun makes a flash when it fires, or not. If you see this, the gun is Flash-Suppressed. If you don't see it, the gun will make a flash! Hiding the flash is very important at nighttime, as it prevents revealing your position to the enemy. Currently, all noise-suppressors will also cancel out flash. This is a realistic feature, actually.



RELIABILITY appears for all weapons; knives, launchers, anything. This is a relative indication of how likely the weapon is to degrade each time it's used. The higher this factor, the more resilient the weapon is to damage, meaning it is less likely to degrade.

Reliability isn't a final value though, as it too gets calculated in a formula. But each point makes a big difference, so this is a pretty powerful factor in a weapon. If you want to keep shooting without having to repair the weapon (and prevent jamming!), you'll want a weapon with higher reliability.

Please note that ARMOR-type items also have reliability, but it's called a "degrade value" and plays a different part in the game. It's explained later, in the section about armor-specific traits.



Reliability can be MODIFIED, and some types of ammo do this. They increase the chance of the weapon to degrade, meaning that you'll have to repair it more often. Since weapon status also affects how likely the weapon is to JAM on you, you'll want to stay away from reliability-reducing ammo on long journeys into enemy territory! Or, just bring extra guns!



REPAIR EASE - this should be obvious. The higher it is, the easier to repair the weapon. Again, this factor gets calculated in complex forumlae, and most of us don't even know how long it takes to repair their rifles anyway. There are no modifiers to this value, at least I don't think so. I don't really care much, anyway. But all weapons have this property :)

AP COSTS

Oh I'm sure you've been wanting to get to this one. But I really hate to disappoint you, as they are hard to explain them in great detail.

The reason for this is that the values we're seeing here are also not ACTUAL values. You don't spend the same amount of AP firing the same gun in different circumstances. However, the values shown are usually very close to the actual costs, and a single point of difference in AP costs between two weapons can save your day in many cases!

Please note that all MODIFIERS related to AP Costs are good when NEGATIVE, and bad when POSITIVE. Reducing the time to take an action is a good thing, so -20% is great, while +20% would make the action take more APs and therefore is bad.



The most basic AP cost is AP COST TO READY. This is how much APs you're charged to pull up your gun. I think it's the same exact cost every time, so you can pretty much rely on this one.



Folding stocks give an AP COST TO READY MODIFIER, reducing the AP cost by a certain percentage, often that can be a cool 1 or 2 less AP! Some weapons have such a stock built-in. The cost shown is the final value, after taking account the built-in stock.

Tactical Note: Naturally, lower Cost to Ready is extremely important for close-range combat. The faster you can get that weapon up, the faster you can unload a clip into the enemy. Machine guns and sniper rifles have the WORST cost to ready. Then again, if you had a handful of APs to begin with, then once that weapon's up you can still put a shot through somebody's eye.

Item Comparison Note: Believe it or not, both the folding stock and the retractable stock give the same exact bonus. The difference is, they can each be attached only to a completely different sets of guns!

 


AP COST TO RELOAD is also straightforward. Assuming you've got the right size of clip! Otherwise, it gets a whole lot more complicated.



A AP COST TO RELOAD MODIFIER exists, generally INCREASING the time to reload (that's a bad thing!). It's usually what you pay for installing attachments that increase magazine size, like "C-Mag Adaptors".



AP COST TO RELOAD MANUALLY should not be confused with the weapon's "Cost to Reload". Most weapons do not have a cost to reload manually - these are called Semi-Automatic weapons. They pull a new bullet into the chamber using the power of the previous shot. Some weapons require the shooter to do this himself - most of these are either shotguns or sniper rifles, but some other weapons have this too. These are called "bolt-action" or "pump-action" weapons.

The "AP Cost to Reload Manually" is the time required to rechamber the weapon between each and every shot. It has nothing to do with extra magazines. After each shot you fire with such a weapon, you will have to spend the listed APs in order to prepare it for the next shot, even if there are rounds left in the weapon. If the clip runs out, you'll pay the weapon's "Cost to Reload" instead (explained above).

Item Comparison Note: Personally, I find that bolt-action sniper rifles are pretty poor in effectiveness compared to semi-automatic ones. The range and accuracy difference is usually very limited, and the AP cost to reload manually can be very high. If you've got a very strong and agile shooter with lots of APs, he or she can probably handle this extra cost and benefit from the advantages of the rifle, but that's usually too much of a cost to pay.



AP COST TO ATTACK is the most complicated of them all, and the least-accurate value. That's because of many reasons, the foremost of which is that the basic value for the calculation is called "Shots per 4 turns". It's extremely bizzare!

Once it's all boiled down through the program, the value has to be modified by the character's maximum APs, stance... you name it! So the final cost is as much a result of the current state of the person holding the gun as it is a result of the gun's inherent characterstics. This means that you're not actually shown the final AP cost to attack!

Instead, the program shows you an approximate value. It does this by feeding generic information into the formula, like an "average" merc's total APs, or the "average" merc's dexterity, I'm not even sure myself. It's so weird, that if you give the gun to a better character (who has more APs to spend per turn), he'll actually fire SLOWER. The value shown won't change though, because it doesn't depend on the character holding the gun, but instead on "generic" data.

There are many different icons for cost-to-attack, as you can see above. Each type of weapon shows a different icon. This helps us distinguish quickly what type of weapon we're looking at.

Please note that for guns, a greyed-out bullet icon means that the weapon cannot fire single shots. For Grenade Launchers, if the weapon cannot fire a single shot, the icon will simply not appear.



AP COST TO FIRE BURST is very similar to "cost to attack" shown above. Actually, it's BASED on that cost. This is the final result of adding three values together: basic "cost to attack", plus the weapon's inherent "Cost to Burst" value, plus any modifiers received from ammo or attachments. The lower this is, the faster you'll fire a burst. If "cost to Attack" goes down, this value automatically goes down too!

Not all weapons have a burst mode. In fact, most don't. The number of bullets shown here tells you how many bullets are fired with each burst. A "trigger group" attachment will raise this by three bullets. However, it can only be installed on weapons that don't normally have burst mode.

If the icon is greyed out, that means the weapon cannot fire bursts.

For Grenade Launchers, the icon doesn't show how many grenades are fired per burst (YET!). But the icon is different to let you know that your bullets will be explodin'. :)

Note also that if the weapon has Burst Mode, it also has a Burst Penalty (read about this above).



AP COST TO FIRE AUTO is the total amount of APs needed to make the weapon fire as few rounds as possible in Autofire mode. For most weapons it will fire just one round, for others can be two or sometimes three (?). You can then spend extra APs to fire more bullets - that's related to the "AUTO SHOTS PER 5 AP", explained earlier.

For now, let's just say that the lower this is, the better. Like the other two ATTACK COST values, this too is not an accurate value, and giving the weapon to someone else will make the actual cost change. And like Burst Fire costs, this too is based on adding together the "Cost to attack" value, the "Cost to Autofire" value, and any modifiers from ammo or attachments.

If the icon is greyed out, the weapon cannot fire in "Full-auto" mode.

Also note that if the weapon has Auto Mode, it also has an Auto Penalty and Autofire Shots per 5 AP. Read about this above.



AP COSTS TO ATTACK can be MODIFIED by certain items. This is a percentage value that either increases or reduces the amount it takes to attack. Naturally this means that a negative value is a GOOD THING here, as it reduces the AP costs!

Each Attack Mode can be modified separately, meaning there's a different modifier for single attacks, burst fire, and auto fire. DO NOTE that anything that changes AP to Attack ("single shot") also changes the other values, because they're based on it!

 
AMMO-SPECIFIC STATS

As explained earlier, each bullet leaves the gun with the same damage potential dictated by the gun's "DAMAGE" value. As the bullet hits a target, this damage potential can go up or down, eventually causing a certain amount of damage to whatever it hits, if in fact it hits anything. Some of the factors that change the final damage are based on properties of the ammo itself.

These properties are called "Penetration", "Tumble", and "Pre-impact explosion". They represent part of what happens to a bullet as it flies towards and hits the target.

The most "regular" bullets are called "BALL" ammunition, and in the game they are colored greyish. They are "regular" because they have a value of 1.00 in each of these three field. Other ammo is compared based on 1.00 being the "normal" value. Ammo properties are actually MULTIPLIERS, as will be explained soon.



First up, PENETRATION VALUE. This indicates the potency of the bullet in piercing through armor (hence, "Armor-Piercing Bullets"). This value is a bit odd because the lower it gets, the better the bullet is at piercing through and hitting the target's body. This is because what the value REALLY indicates is how effective any piece of armor is at stopping the bullet. So with the value of 0.75, an Armor-Piercing bullet reduces the effectiveness of the target's armor to 75% of its original effectiveness. This eventually determines not only how much damage is done to the armor, but also how much damage the bullet is left with, which is then transferred directly into the target's body.



TUMBLE is what the bullet does once it encounters flesh. In physical terms, once the bullet starts striking flesh and bone it quickly loses its direction and starts spinning and "tumbling" inside the victim's body, creating big ugly holes. "HP" ammo is great at this, and "GLASER" ammo is even better. The higher this value is, the more the bullet's final remaining power (after armor reductions) is multiplied. That is, if the bullet managed to pass the armor at all! "HP" and "GLASER" have very poor Penetration values, they're unlikely to have any power left after going through anything more than light armor! Remember, the higher the better.



PRE-IMPACT EXPLOSION is a curious one, and is currently unique to HE and HEAP Minirockets. The pre-impact multiplier is applied to the bullet's damage potential right before it strikes its target! The armor is thus hit with some MASSIVE damage, usually causing it to completely fail in stopping the bullet from tearing up the victim's insides! That's why Rocket Rifle shots are so devastating. And HEAP minirockets can easily pierce through any armor left, so even heavy armor stinks against them. Naturally, the higher the better!

 
ADDITIONAL AMMO PROPERTIES

Some types of ammo give various bonuses to the weapon they are loaded into. These have all been explained in the appropriate sections about Weapon Data, above.

However, some ammo properties are pretty unique, and they deserve not only special explanation, but also special icons. These are all "ON/OFF" icons ("FLAGS"), meaning that if the bullet has a special property, its icon will appear. If the bullet doesn't have that property, its icon will not appear. Simple as that.



Tracer bullets give a TRACER EFFECT. These are the streaks of light shooting out along the path of the bullets. In nighttime, they can reveal the position of enemy troops! They can also show them your position too, so do it carefully. Although all current tracer magazines also give burst/auto penalty modifiers (that's really their primary purpose!), the two values are not really connected, and a magazine could give tracer effect without giving that bonus, and vice versa. It's all up to modders, really.



The ANTITANK property is unique to HEAP Minirockets. It means that this specific type of ammo can actually hurt TANKS. Without this property, no ammo can hurt tanks at all. That's why we usually carry mortar shells and LAW rockets when we go to visit Meduna! Explosives can hurt tanks without this property, but ammo just can't.



LOCKBUSTING AMMO serves its name correctly. It destroys locks. Well, most of the time. It's a very quirky feature in my opinion. But it's great if you haven't gotten yourself a good locksmith yet.

Tactical Note: Do be careful - The only lockbusting ammo at the moment are LB Shotgun Shells. Have a look at this type of ammo and you'll see that it also gives a Range Penalty - it shortens the range of your shotgun! The two are not linked though, so modders can potentially make Lock-Busting ammo that doesn't give a range penalty, and vice versa.



Ammo can be made to IGNORE ARMOR, and it will then show this icon. Such ammo would be very cool, but as far as today's JA2 1.13 goes, there are no magazines that have this property. Bummer. If it does happen some day, just know that this kind of ammo simply ignores armor! It doesn't take the target's armor into consideration when calculating how much damage the bullet does. Armor-B-Gone! I'm kind of glad no ammo gives this - my guys would surely die. But the icon is there, just in case some future modder decides to go crazy.



ACIDIC is also a scarce property - when the bullet hits armor, it will CORRODE that armor, reducing it to almost useless status in no-time. Very dangerous. Bug Spit has this property, as do Depleted Uranium rounds. Unfortunately (or fortunately?), neither are available to us players at the moment.

 
ARMOR-SPECIFIC PROPERTIES

Armor has some unique properties, and it may give some modifiers too. For now I'll concentrate on unique armor properties. The modifiers that can be given by armor are discussed in a later section, as they are not unique to armor-type items.

Basic armor values are PROTECTION, COVERAGE, and DEGRADE VALUE. The actual functions that factor this in to stopping damage are numerous, and it would be difficult to explain exactly what each of these values actually do. I'll try generalizing it though.



PROTECTION is basically how good the armor is at stopping a bullet or other attack from reaching the target's flesh. It actually removes some (or all) of the bullet's damage potential. The higher the Protection value, the more damage it can stop. Also, the more protection an armor item has, the less it will be damaged by any attack it manages to block (partially or completely).

This value also takes into account any attachments added to the armor, such as Ceramic Plates. Please note however that the value shown in the Enhanced Description Box is not the ACTUAL value - it doesn't take into account the armor's status! To see the actual value, hover your cursor over the armor item in your inventory screen.



COVERAGE is also very helpful in stopping bullets. Actually, it determines whether the armor gets a chance to interfere at all! An armor item with low coverage is unlikely to prevent any bullet from slipping through and causing full damage to the target. For instance, a helmet with very good Protection value but very low Coverage value will simply not get the chance to stop the bullet! Waste of helmet space!



The DEGRADE PERCENTAGE icon looks the same as a weapon's "reliability" indicator, as they have a similar effect on two completely different types of items. In essense, it controls how quickly the armor disintegrates whenever it is hit by an attack, just as weapon reliability controls how quickly a weapon degrades through use. Powerful bullets with armor piercing properties will hurt an armor more, but a low armor degrade percentage helps balance this out. Degrade percentage is better when lower! A lower value means sturdier armor that does not easily degrade when struck.

Armor often gives one or more modifiers directly to the character wearing it. Most prominent are To-Hit Penalties and AP Penalties, but it's not limited to those. I'll cover these additional modifiers later in this guide.

 
EXPLOSIVES-SPECIFIC PROPERTIES

Data on explosives is relatively less varied than other item types, and some of it has already been covered. The items included in this category are Grenades, Gas Grenades, Launched Grenades, Placed Bombs, Mortar Shells, Rockets, Mines, Traps, and even Break Lights! There are even some different icons for each of these so that you can tell the type of explosive just by looking at its data chart.

EXPLOSIVE DIAMETER can be displayed in two different ways, depending on the type of explosive used. Some explosions are instantaneous, delivering all their effect at once (like bombs and stun grenades). Others have a certain duration, giving their effect over time. There are several types of icons used here (see below). They allow us to see at a glance what kind of explosive we're looking at. Please note however that this only indicates the VISUAL effect given by the explosive when it goes off. The actual damage done is dictated by the DAMAGE/STUN DAMAGE icons, explained above.

So theoretically a modder can make a smoke grenade that does damage, or a high-explosive grenade that does no damage at all. The only explosive whose visual effect actually means something is the LIGHT explosive, as it increases brightness of tiles around its epicenter. For others, the visual effect is just eyecandy, as it doesn't tell us what the explosion really does.

Geometry Note: The original value in the XMLs is actually a radius, not a diameter. The value shown in the Enhanced Description Box is calculated from radius to diameter because I simply couldn't come up with a good icon for radii! Live with it, crazy math nuts.



If the explosive is a one-off, a single EXPLOSIVE DIAMETER icon is displayed. This is the diameter of the blast/effect. It is only applied at the moment of the blast. If the explosion causes DAMAGE or STUN DAMAGE, the target's distance from the center of the explosion helps determine how much damage it suffers.



If the explosive takes effect over several turns (like gas grenades), two icons are shown. The first is the Starting Diameter, meaning the size of the effect at the time of the attack. The second value is the "final diameter", meaning how far the area of effect can grow before it starts to dissipate.

I'll also repeat that the icon only tells you the visual effect you'll see. Actual damage isn't dictated by the visual - a smoke explosive doesn't HAVE to cause no damage, just as an incendiary grenade doesn't actually have to burn anyone. It only determines what you see. Of course, for light-type explosives, the visual effect is everything :) .

Please note that explosives that give a light effect have the two values shown in reverse. A breaklight or flare will start at the larger diameter (the "final" diameter of the blast), and slowly diminish in size. "Word on the street" is that light-type explosives really behave weird compared to other explosives, but the data is still there to be shown, even if it is grossly inaccurate.

Some explosives have the same "starting" and "final" diameters. That means that the effect doesn't grow or diminish at all. It stays the same size for the entire duration of the effect.

For multi-turn effects, a duration is also shown:

Tactical Note: You may have already noticed this yourself, but the area-of-effect isn't always circular. Obstacles can prevent fire or gas from spreading, especially when the explosive is set off indoors. An explosive with a huge effect diameter will still have a very small area when set off in a very small room.



DURATION tells us how long the effect lasts, in turns. If the explosive deals damage or stun damage, it will do so every turn to anyone caught inside its effect diameter.

Code Note: The diameter of any effect can only grow or diminish by two tiles each turn (I.E., radius grows by one tile) until its duration runs out. Some items in current JA2 1.13 have a "final radius" that is too large to be reached within the time constraint. Once the duration is over, the effect will simply stop growing, even if it hasn't reached its final radius yet. One or the other should be changed!



VOLATILITY appears only for some explosives, and not for others. It represents the chance for the item to explode unexpectedly, triggered by a chain reaction set off by another nearby explosion. Anyone who's ever carried a jar of RDX crystals into heavy combat probably knows this scenario. You usually end up dead or badly hurt. Fortunately, most explosives are not as volatile as RDX, but it's good to know the value so you don't do anything stupid!

 
ADDITIONAL MODIFIERS

The following modifiers can be given by a whole variety of items. Some of the previously explained types of items (like Armor or Ammo) may also give such modifiers. More importantly though, "Miscellaneous Items" (meaning, all items not belonging to the above groups) only give modifiers. They do not have any special properties of their own, at least not ones displayed in the Enahnced Description Box...

All items not belonging to any of the above groups are called "MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS" for the purposes of this guide. All "Misc Items" are treated similarly by the Enhanced Description Box, except for keys and money whose displayed data hasn't been changed.

With MISC. Items, since they don't have any unique properties, they will only show whatever data is relevant to them - I.E. what modifiers they have if any. If the item is an attachment, it will only give its modifiers to whatever received the attachment. If the item is worn on the merc's body (like headgear), it will give modifiers directly to the merc.

Most of the modifiers given by Misc Items have already been explained in this guide, where appropriate. Other modifiers which also apply to previously-discussed item types have been left for the end, and I'll cover those now.



In the beginning of this guide I explained AP cost modifiers connected to the use of weapons. This new value however, called an AP MODIFIER, is much more severe. Instead of reducing or increasing the cost to perform a specific action (like shooting a gun, or reloading), it directly changes the number of APs the character can spend per turn! At the moment, only the heavier armors give this penalty, and it's a very important consideration when choosing what type of armor to wear. Naturally, it's usually balanced with a very high degree of protection. EOD armor is worst - it'll knock off many APs off maximum, but then again practically nothing can hurt you short of HEAP rockets!



Armors sometimes give CAMO MODIFIERS (although none give negative camo... YET). They help you camouflage yourself without having to use a lot of paint. Camo comes in many "flavours", from Urban to Desert camo, but at the moment armors (and other camo-modifying equipment like certain LBEs) give only Woodland Camo. Only Camo Kits can give different kinds of camo at the moment, but that's again up to modders.

Camouflage reduces an enemy's effective sightrange when trying to spot the character wearing it. It depends on the location of your merc though, so wearing woodland camo in a town is rarely very useful.

The bonus is most often given when standing on tiles of a specific type. Therefore, when standing on a tall grass tile, woodland camo has good effect. When standing on a dirt road or a sand tile, Desert camo works best, etc. Woodland camo also takes effect when standing behind trees.

Finally, the more camo given by your worn equipment, the less camo kits you need to use to get your camo rating up to 100%. It is possible, using Ghillie Suits, to raise camo to 100%, which gives you a permanent camouflage and makes camo kits redundant. Of course, Ghillie has its own disadvantages.



A positive STEALTH MODIFIER on any worn item (armor or headgear) allows characters to move more quietly. They become less likely to be heard by an enemy at close range, although they don't affect how likely you are to be SEEN by the enemy. Coupled with Stealth Mode movement ("Z" key), they can make the wearer almost completely silent. Great for sneaking past or towards enemies, but don't trust it to obscure you from sight, because it won't! Combine good Stealth bonuses with good Camouflage for that perfect "hard to detect" effect.

Please note that no items, as of yet, grant us stealth bonuses. Dang.



Some weapon attachments give a MAGAZINE SIZE BONUS. They increase the number of bullets a gun can contain. Due to program constraints, there must exist a magazine item that can contain the exact number of total bullets in the gun after this modification. For now, we only have items that increase 30-round weapons to 100-round weapons. That may change in the future though.



The ITEM SIZE MODIFIER is a new addition to the XMLs. It's only relevant if you're playing with the New Inventory system, and I think it is only given by weapon attachments and rockets. It essentially increases or decreases a weapon's size to the next category. If a gun used to fit in your combat pack, but you add a silencer to it, it might be too long now and require you to carry it in a backpack, or slung over the shoulder. Folding Stocks reduce item size by one point, making them easier (but not much easier) to carry around.

DETECTION RANGE MODIFIERS

This group of modifiers is widespread among item types - it's given by several different weapon attachments, by worn headgear, and possibly also by armors in the future. If the item is a weapon attachment or a hand-held device, the modifier is only given when the weapon/device are Readied (see above). If the item is worn on the body (armor or headgear), the bonus or penalty is constant.

Each modifier applies in different conditions - it either increases or decreases your range of sight/hearing in SPECIFIC CONDITIONS. All of these modifiers are measured in TILES.



GENERAL VISION RANGE MODIFIER is a flat range bonus given in any condition, be it bright light, midnight, or in the rain.



DAY VISION RANGE MODIFIER is a flat change to sight range given when looking at a tile that is under average daylight. I'm not sure what brightness is daylight, but I guess it's around 11/15.

NIGHT VISION RANGE MODIFIER is given during poor light conditions, especially when looking at very dark tiles (3/15). It only applies above-ground, otherwise the CAVE VISION modifier is used (see below).

BRIGHT LIGHT VISION RANGE MODIFIER is helpful when looking at very bright tiles, close to 15/15 brightness. I think this only happens with breaklights? Maybe also when lightning strikes during a storm? I'm not sure.

CAVE VISION RANGE MODIFIER applies to dark tiles in mines. I'm not sure whether it applies in basements too.



PERCENT TUNNEL VISION modifies the "field of vision". The higher this number goes, the less angle of vision your merc gets. If the modifier is high enough, it can easily mean that the merc cannot see anything to his right or left, only straight ahead. I believe the minimum field-of-view angle is 45 degrees - this is given with 100% tunnel vision. I think this was done to make sure that there are no blind spots, as mercs can only turn in 45 degree increments.

If the item is a weapon attachment, it will only give percent-tunnel-vision when the weapon is "readied". All scopes give some measure of Tunnel Vision.

If the item is worn, it will give a constant field-of-view decrease.

Please note that percent-tunnel-vision is better when LOWER. So 90% is much worse than 20%. I don't know if it's possible to give a negative percent-tunnel-vision, but if so that would be a good thing (making your merc see MORE to each side).



HEARING RANGE can also be modified. Ear extenders add 5 tiles! Not much more to be said.

 

 


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