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Liquid Metal Slime
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Status Effects 
 PostMon Aug 10, 2020 10:32 am
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Because I want some discussion on the topic from active users, I've decided to make a thread dedicated to it here.

In the engine as it currently exists, we have four status effects registers:
Poison (damage over time)
Regen (healing over time)
Stun (no actions until timer runs out)
Mute (no specific actions until timer runs out)

The old planned top-down status effects from early builds that sometimes wind up being the weapon slot, experience points, etc, when updating or playing ancient games in new versions of the engine:

My hypothesis:

Sleep - Stun
Stone - Stun
Poison - Poison
Plague - Poison
Blind - Accuracy reduced until timer runs out
Mute - Mute
Insane - Confusion (or "Intelligence/Willpower reduced until timer runs out?")
Slow - Reduced speed/evasion until timer runs out
Weak - Attack reduced until timer runs out
Soft - Defense reduced until timer runs out
Curse - Willpower reduced? Poison? Poison for MP?
Power - Attack and possibly Intelligence increased until timer runs out
Accuracy - Accuracy increased until timer runs out
Hyper - First thought would be haste, but I'm thinking more likely "hypercharged magic power" while Power would be for physical strength
Shell - Defense of some sort raised until timer runs out
Dodge - Evasion raised until timer runs out
Fast - Speed raised until timer runs out
Wall - Defense of some sort raised until timer runs out
Blessing - Stat temporarily raised raised? Regeneration? MP Regen?

What some of these would do isn't entirely clear. My instincts say Shell should be for physical defense and Wall should be for special defense but most of this is guesswork. Any word from our dev team on what the original plan for these was over two decades ago now?

I'd really like to have some more registers and/or the ability to customize some other effects tied to them while active, such as making it so a Stunned character has an effective Evasion of 0 until they recover (sleeping or petrified people aren't exactly known for their acrobatic dodging prowess). Like having a new RPG default to just those four and an option similar to the combinatorial explosions we get of adding more and more elements, adding a register then editing what it does to a character while active, getting bitsets on the attack definitions like "Can't be used if attacker is [register]" "Fail if target is [register]" and "Reset [register]".

I understand enough to know adding this much new support for status effects would be a huge undertaking because status registers are actually stats, right?

Right now the best way to do Confusion/Insanity is probably to make copies of all your attacks and use the Mute timer and have all attacks do an instead-chain to the copy, which will have "automatically choose target" and opposed target class ("Ally" or "Ally not self" for attacks, "Enemy" for heals and buffs, or maybe just "All" if you're doing a 100% instead chain rather than a 50/50 shot of still having control).

Likewise you can use the Mute status as a temporary "blind" status using such chaining and attacks set to not damage, "Show attack name" "do not display damage" and named the same as your attack missing text string. Easier though is of course just using chaining and "Delay doesn't block further actions" on an attack that damages Accuracy directly for a temporary blind effect, but along with other stat buffs/debuffs that doesn't display as a little icon next to your HP, now does it?

Status effects are really cool and useful.

One thing I'm regularly doing recently is having all damage effects reset the Stun register, because I almost always use that for Sleep. If I had a separate Petrify status I'd make attacks not end that one prematurely.

I also got the idea from Okedoke and the anime Slayers to make it so some types of healing not work if the target is poisoned. In particular, Nathan and Natalie's signature Bubblegum Bandage spell won't work on anyone who is poisoned, and most games I make won't let a sick person eat HP or MP healing food items - just medicine.

Another interesting idea would be using status effects that act as a double edged sword. The On Fire status gives you damage over time like poison, but also gives you a counterattack to enemies' touch attacks and boosts your magic power while active, let's say. Or while Insane, your attack power is higher but you can strike your allies as well as your enemies and the player is under no control of who you target or which of your moves you use.
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Metal Slime
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 PostMon Aug 10, 2020 4:26 pm
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My guess is that Shell would've been a magic defense boost, and Wall would reflect magic back at enemy casters -- that's what the spells of the same name did in the Final Fantasy games and FF4 has been mentioned as a major inspiration of early OHRRPGCE stuff.

Though, those are the only two defense-boost-sounding ones in that list (maybe Blessing too?) so it's hard to say for sure if they would've had the same effects.
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Puckamon -- Not until the reserve party is expanded.[/size]
Liquid Metal Slime
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 PostMon Aug 10, 2020 7:28 pm
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FnrrfYgmSchnish wrote:
My guess is that Shell would've been a magic defense boost, and Wall would reflect magic back at enemy casters -- that's what the spells of the same name did in the Final Fantasy games and FF4 has been mentioned as a major inspiration of early OHRRPGCE stuff.

Though, those are the only two defense-boost-sounding ones in that list (maybe Blessing too?) so it's hard to say for sure if they would've had the same effects.

I considered that as well (first place I ever saw the Shell spell was FFH, and both Shell existed alongside Protect as the physical defense boost in Final Fantasy Tactics Advance and Final Fantasy 2). Though wouldn't the dodge boost be named Invisible instead of Dodge?

And then I thought "Maybe Shell is the opposite of Soft" instead of it being Soft vs Hard (a possible name consideration being rejected to prevent giggles from dirty minds like mine).

Another possibility could be Hyper being for the Speed stat (hyperactive so your turn keeps coming faster) while Fast is a boost to the Extra Hits stat like it is in FF1.

It definitely feels like there should be one buff and one debuff each to attack, accuracy, defense, evasion, magic, willpower, and speed.
    Power? & Weak
    Blind & Accuracy
    Wall? & Soft
    Dodge & _
    Hyper? & Mute?
    Shell? & Insane?
    Fast & Slow

But this leaves only Plague, Blessing, and Curse.

I would also think "Maybe evasion buffs would be tied to the same status as speed buffs" but Accuracy/Dodge and Fast/Slow are our only 100% obvious, 100% complete pairings aside from Regen/Poison. Maybe Stone could be a Dodge debuff instead of a separate copy of Stun to be resisted and cured independently?

I also remember speculation when it came up in the past about Soft possibly being a cure for Stone, but I don't think so - Antidote to be the opposite of Poison, Sane to be the opposite of Insane, and Awaken to be the opposite of Sleep aren't there after all.

I found out after starting this thread that the very flexibility of altering how status afflictions work was a feature request put in the bug list back in 2008. ANd I'm sure whatever we get is going to be way more flexible than the original plan for status abilities back in 1998 - possibly as much more as our current elemental weakness/resistance/failure system is than the one we used until 2010!

And yeah, if you don't specifically want to use Mute as a "block special attacks from being used" status it's really useful for all sorts of other things. You can make attacks chain to stronger versions of themselves if the attacker is Muted, I'm pretty sure (offensive boost); you can make attacks have a "Fail if target is Muted" bitset so that it acts as a barrier type of spell. You could do both at once to make it a super mode status! As well as Okedoke and Puckamon making it a physical paralyze status which blocked use of any attacks that needed arms/free movement while purely mental magic attacks could still be performed. Since unlike Poison, Regen, and Stun which also have "fail if target is _" bitsets it doesn't have a guaranteed other baked-in use, Mute is the most flexible for now. After all, if you make attacks to the Mute register but never once set any bitsets relating to Mute on any of your attacks, it does nothing.

Looking at the standard font and which icons correstpond to existing status:
    Card suit Heart (regen)
    Skull and bones (poison)
    Stop watch (stun)
    Empty word balloon (mute)

And which ones look like they might also be status effects
    Crosshairs (accuracy? There's both an open and closed lock-on icon here)
    Bob's head (I always thought it was a harp for years upon years)
    Word balloon with a Z in it (sleep)
    Potion bottle (maybe this one was poison and the jolly roger was plague? That icon did originally mena plague on ship flags!)
    Circle with a horizontal line through it - it was only last night I ever thought "closed eye, blind!" rather than "Pokeball")
    Big grinning mouth full of sharp teeth and angry eyes? Curse? I always thought of this as an apron and Fenrir used it for capes in Timestream Saga
    Hourglass. Another stun type? Slow? Fast?
    Broken Sword. Attack down?
    A trapezoid and a diagonal bar. I have no idea what this icon is or could be, but I've used it as pauldrons/vambraces when I want to get really detailed in armor pieces as equipment.
    Blank icon
    Crossed swords - attack buff, or maybe haste?
    Circle with an up arrow in it - no clue, maybe the magic defense buff
    Blank icon
    Heater shield with an up arrow on it - definitely a defense boost!
    Up and down arrows - no idea really

Which reminds me, it's weird and a little annoying that the default status icons in a new game were never updated to match the new default font when that was changed. Of course, this is far from the only change to starting new game files up I find aesthetically unappealing!
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Metal Slime
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 PostMon Aug 10, 2020 10:56 pm
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The thing about status effects is that there's absolutely DEGREES of severity built in. Look no further than the classic Sleep/Stun/Stop/Stone. They all essentially do the same thing - prevent a character from taking their turn, but how they're removed differs from game to game. Let's go with the Final Fantasy 4 conventions on these, since that's what early OHR games often followed.

Sleep effects usually wear off on their own over time, can be removed with an item, or you simply wake up the character with a physical attack. While annoying, Sleep is -easily- removed by a variety of ways. OHR games can mimic the effect of physical attacks removing "sleep" simply by having them all reset the "Stun" bitset.

Stun does the same thing - the character can't act. Like sleep, it wears off over time and can usually be removed with magic or an item, but you can't usually remove it with a physical attack. Though it's effectively the same thing, it's different enough in ONE way to make it more "severe" than Sleep. By default, this is the way that the OHR handles "stun".

Stop has mostly the same effect as Stun, but it's worse. Games that make use of Stop usually have it wear off only with the passing of time, and very rarely a specific spell or item may be the only other thing to alleviate its effect (Usually Haste).

Stone is the worst of the bunch. It goes one step further than Stop, mainly in that it doesn't wear off over time - meaning a specific spell or rare consumable item is the ONLY means of alleviating this particular ailment. Worse, Stone is usually one of the only ailments that "persists" after battles - characters that are petrified STAY petrified, until the curse can be lifted. In an OHR game there's not much that can be done to make status effects persist after battles, but you MIGHT be able to simulate a stone attack IN battles by dropping a character's speed down to 0. Just be sure that whatever attack you use to reset "stone" also resets a character's speed - otherwise you can't use them for anything other than a meat shield!

But can we get even MORE severe than Stone? The answer is yes!

Erase is a condition that shows up in FF5. It's essentially a more severe variant of Stop, except the character themself is outright removed from the battle - they'll come back when it's over, but once they're gone, you can't interact with them AT ALL for the remainder of the fight. That means no spells or items can bring them back! The ONLY way to replicate this effect in an OHR game is to equip an item before a battle that reduces a character's Max HP to 0 or lower! Such as a certain pair of pants in Sword of Jade, or that one item in No Eat 2.
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Liquid Metal Slime
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 PostMon Aug 10, 2020 11:43 pm
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Ah yes, the hierarchy of not-able-to-move statuses. I usually mentally file "stun" as weaker than "sleep" but that's more from associating the former with the Paralysis status in Pokemon (halved speed and 50/50 chance of being unable to act every turn) and the latter with the Dragon Warrior series (where you can wail on a sleeping target with impunity as damage doesn't wake them up). But the FF4 hierarchy definitely was the version in play for FF1 - it was always paralyzing ghouls that destroyed my solo runs!

Fenrir-Lunaris wrote:
Erase is a condition that shows up in FF5. It's essentially a more severe variant of Stop, except the character themself is outright removed from the battle - they'll come back when it's over, but once they're gone, you can't interact with them AT ALL for the remainder of the fight. That means no spells or items can bring them back!

Being able to use this status would allow using something other than a Jump attack to have a character who becomes invisible or burrows underground and later returns, or having character-by-character fleeing from battle to save your critically hurt characters from dying in a game where death is serious, at the cost of them possibly not gaining experience like a dead character.

Fenrir-Lunaris wrote:
The ONLY way to replicate this effect in an OHR game is to equip an item before a battle that reduces a character's Max HP to 0 or lower! Such as a certain pair of pants in Sword of Jade, or that one item in No Eat 2.

Also, the Offering in FFH - though in that case it's more likely to be negative HP than max HP of zero because "cap minimum stats at 0" wasn't a thing back in 2003. And speaking of old OHR games, two party members in the game Zander had effects sorta like this - a prince transformed into an animal has a max HP of 0 and can't participate in battle at all, while a healer can be hired later in the game who has healing spells and HP (so enemies can attack him) but has a base Speed of 0 so he can only heal you between fights, not during them.

And the item that reduces max HP in my other alluded to recent game will still leave you with some HP if you're at a high level...half your usual, at the easily-attained max level. It's one of several items designed to basically "break" the gameplay, making such drastic changes to various stats that it completely changes the main character's fighting style. This does it for magic, one of them does it for speed and another does it for his stealing mechanic.
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Metal Slime
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 PostTue Aug 11, 2020 4:18 am
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I would welcome more/customisable status effects in battle. It'd go along way to increasing depth.

Right now it feels like a lot of changes and additions are aesthetic or only affect the outside battle portions of games. Don't get me wrong, they're all amazing additions (and still very much appreciated), but the meat of RPGs is the battle system and I feel it could benefit from some more attention down the line.
I understand, however, that the nature of development for the OHRRPGCE seems to be moving towards heavily scripted games that often don't even touch the default battle system.
Metal Slime
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 PostWed Aug 12, 2020 2:14 am
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A trapezoid and a diagonal bar.

If this is the one I'm thinking of, it's a broken shield (to go along with the broken sword, I imagine.)

...I also didn't realize the Bob head was in fact a Bob head for a loooong time, though for some reason my mind kept wanting to interpret it as some sort of skeletal remains, like a random ribcage and stuff. 😅
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Puckamon -- Not until the reserve party is expanded.[/size]
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 PostWed Aug 12, 2020 5:33 am
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The way that most RPGs handle status effects is actually something that's always bugged me. The root of the problem I have is that most RPGs make too many of their status effects completely disabling: they either prevent your characters doing anything useful (Mute for casters, Final Fantasy's "Mini" for fighters,) prevent them doing anything at all (Paralysis, Stone, Stop,) or make them do actively harmful things (in many games that use Confusion, a confused character can kill other party members in one hit; once in Final Fantasy 7, I had Cloud afflicted with Confusion right after I got Slash-All and his ultimate weapon, and he killed my entire party in one hit.)

Since characters who are afflicted with those status effects can't do anything, game designers need to give you a way to cure them in the middle of battles before enemies start using them, so that when you have those status effects used on you for the first time, it's not just an instant Game Over. Generally, this means you won't encounter enemies that use any of the really nasty status effects until the middle section of the game, and before then, you'll get some sort of Esuna-equivalent spell that instantly cures any status condition.

The problem is that, when you have the ability to cure any status effect in one move, and when status effects are disabling enough that there's no way you can justify doing anything other than curing them immediately, all status effects essentially mean the same thing: "lose one turn for one character to cure this". And making a character lose a turn is a really boring effect for an enemy attack to have; in general, any effect that means "you have to stop playing the game for a while now" doesn't make for engaging gameplay.

I think status effects would be a lot more interesting if their effect on your characters was toned down, but they weren't so easy to get rid of: maybe you could have spells that decrease the duration of status effects, or immunize your characters against them if you cast them beforehand, but any spells that can instantly cure status effects would be limited in some way (they might cost too much MP to cast often, or there might be some sort of system where you can only equip a limited number of spells at a time, so if you wanted to have spells ready to cure every status condition, that would come at the cost of your versatility in other areas.) Then status effects would be something you need to plan ahead for and adjust your tactics for, instead of just casting Esuna every time any status effect is used on you and then forgetting about it.

(This would also solve the problem that TV Tropes calls "Contractual Boss Immunity": instead of your characters having a long list of spells with effects like Stone, Toad, Mute, and Instant Death that sound incredibly useful, but that you never use because all but really weak enemies are immune to them, you could have spells that significantly debuff enemies, but don't instantly kill them or stop them from attacking entirely, and boss battles could be designed around the idea that you can and will inflict some debuffs on the boss. If you have a choice of characters with different debuffs in their repertoires, that could enable some different strategies for fighting bosses.)

With that said, here are some examples of games that I think have handled status effects very well:

- There's a free open-source tactics game called The Battle for Wesnoth that has the best way of handling a poisoning mechanic I've seen. (It's also one of my few favorite games of all time, and a game I think everyone who aspires to design games should try, because every aspect of it, not just the way it handles status effects, is amazingly well thought out and designed to be easy to understand and make plans around, but lead to complex tactical decisions where there isn't an obvious best move to make.) Certain attacks can poison any unit they hit, which makes that unit lose 8 HP at the beginning of its turn until it's cured, so that seems pretty standard so far. The interesting part is that curing poison and healing HP are done through the same ability, and each turn, healing units can either cure an adjacent friendly unit's poisoning or heal an adjacent friendly unit's HP, but not both. (You don't make that choice manually; at the time you begin your turn, if a healing unit is next to a friendly unit that's poisoned, it automatically cures that unit's poisoning, otherwise it heals any adjacent friendly units.)

This means that, even if you have plenty of units that can cure poison, poison can still be a genuine threat, because it can stop you healing your units at a critical time, and it means there's an interesting way to use poison offensively, to stop the enemy's healers being able to heal the damage you do to enemy units. And this system can be implemented pretty easily in an OHR game, by having healing moves check whether the target's poison counter is less than 1000, and if it is, instead-chain to a move that resets the poison counter but doesn't restore HP.

- I think the way the Pokemon series handles Burn and Paralysis is a good example of how harmful status effects should be in order to make them important strategic considerations without completely disabling the affected character. Burn is an effect that doesn't just deal damage, it gives you a lasting decrease in physical power, without making physical attacks blatantly unusable like Final Fantasy's "Mini" which reduces the damage you deal with physical attacks to 1. And since Paralysis only has a random chance of stopping you attacking on each turn, and never stops certain actions like using items and switching Pokemon, it doesn't make you completely helpless if it's inflicted on your entire active party (which is good when your active party, at any given time, consists of 1 Pokemon.) And immediately breaking out a Parlyz Heal isn't automatically the best response to it (if the enemy Pokemon can deal enough damage to knock your Pokemon out on the same turn you'd cure their paralysis, it's worth trying to knock them out first with a high-priority attack.)

I also think the fact that Burn and Paralysis are almost exclusively associated with specific types is good, because it means the types aren't interchangeable. Playing with Fire-type attackers is a different experience from playing with Electric-type attackers (or Poison-type attackers, although they made most Poison types pretty useless anyway,) and it means Fire types and Electric types lend themselves to being used with different strategies and different support moves.

- The Zombie status in Final Fantasy games is normally very bad, because it means any attempt to heal your characters hurts them instead. However, it also gives your characters the same immunity to Instant Death attacks that undead enemies have. In Final Fantasy 10, there's a boss battle where you actually need to make strategic use of this. The boss constantly inflicts Zombie on your characters, and you need to cure them to heal the damage they take from the boss's normal attacks. But she also periodically uses an attack that inflicts Instant Death on your whole party, which only zombie party members can survive. So at any given time, you actually need to keep some party members zombified so the Instant Death attack won't work on them, and others healthy so you can keep their HP up. I'd like it if there were more status effects in RPGs that are usually bad, but can actually be situationally useful.

(Berserk is an example of a tradeoff like this that already shows up in a lot of games: generally, in games where the Berserk status exists, there's a way you can inflict it on your own characters, and it makes you deal more damage with physical attacks, at the cost of not being able to choose to do anything else besides physical attacks. But I'd like that idea to be expanded on, preferably with status effects that don't make you lose all control over your characters, because again, there's nothing that makes for more boring gameplay than that. Wario Land 3 takes this idea to its logical extreme: despite not being an RPG, it's basically an entire game about deliberately letting enemies inflict weird status effects on you and using their effects to help you get past obstacles, and I think it's something game designers could take some inspiration from.)
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Metal Slime
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 PostWed Aug 12, 2020 3:19 pm
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I'll have to second the notion that status effects that amount to losing turns being dull. It's a similar issue with cursed equipment - why bother with something that only has downsides when there's very easy ways of getting rid of the issue by the time said issues pop up? Better to go with things that have upsides in addition to their downsides, or at the very least have more interesting results than 'X isn't allowed now'.

My personal touchstone for interesting status effects/buffs is Rabi-Ribi's selection of them: you have your usual poison, stun, attack/defense boosts, and so on, but you also have:
-Freeze, which only hurts you when you're attacking
-Shrink/Giant, which do exactly what they say they do [and buff/debuff certain things while doing so]
-Statuses that grant the potential to inflict debuffs on opponents when attacking
-99 Reflect, which reflects damage back at the attacker above a certain damage threshold
-Four increasingly powerful buffs based on how many times you game over in a row

Granted, a lot of the ones here make more sense in the context of Rabi-Ribi [a platformer with a lot of RPG elements], and a lot of the statuses there are enemy-only and/or are one-offs - but that sort of stuff is neat, and some stuff there can really affect how you approach certain bosses.
I'd personally want to wait until battlescripting exists to dive into more obtuse types of status effects, but there's some stuff - skills that need to be used to prep counterattacks, enemies raising elemental barriers, conditional debuffing - that can already be done in the battle system, with varying amounts of difficulty.
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 PostWed Aug 12, 2020 5:26 pm
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I've been playing a lot of Bug Fables recently, and while there aren't many different status effects, there's a lot of equipment that encourages risky-rewardy strategies where you deliberately inflict statuses on your own party for unique benefits. (As a fun aside, some of the best food items you find early on carry a status effect penalty, like super tasty ice cream that "may cause brain freeze!") I'll summarize them real quick in case anyone wants to borrow these ideas, they're pretty neat, though of course not all of them will translate neatly into the default OHR battle system.

1. Poison (inflicts damage every turn)
Poison Attacker or Poison Defender medals will increase power/defense while poisoned.
Poison Touch medal adds a chance to spread poison to enemies that attack directly while poisoned.
Reverse Toxin medal makes poison heal you, in exchange for reduced defense while poisoned.
Eternal Venom medal prevents poison from wearing off over time.
Weak Stomach medal makes all food items poison you.

2. Freeze (cannot act; take extra damage from next attack, which also breaks the ice)
Frostbite medal halves damage while frozen, and adds a chance to freeze enemies that attack directly.

3. Sleep (cannot act; recover HP every turn, getting hit wakes you up)
Heavy Sleeper medal prevents attacks from waking up the user; HP recovered each turn is tripled; damage taken while asleep is halved.

4. Numbness (cannot act; defense is increased)
Shock Trooper medal makes user take 0 damage while numb.

I've been more focused on crafting my own battle system, so I'm not sure what's possible with the default engine nowadays, but things like "spread poison while poisoned" could easily work as counter-attacks if there were a way to conditionally change a hero's counter-attacks with plotscripting.
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 PostWed Aug 12, 2020 6:06 pm
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Baconlabs wrote:
(As a fun aside, some of the best food items you find early on carry a status effect penalty, like super tasty ice cream that "may cause brain freeze!")

One of my 20ish design documents on my computer has something like this for a few of its healing items. The most common MP restoring item restores 1 MP at a time (basic candy) and stronger MP heals like ice cream and popsicles cause brain freeze (Mute status) so your mage needs to be thinking long-term to make use of them during a fight (and it still might be the best option).

There's a cheap, easy to make HP healing item called the Scorpion Skewer - it's what it sounds like, an entire scorpion on a stick, still with its stinger and venom. It's far cheaper than equivalent HP heals because it also poisons the user when eaten, but if you have a scorpion-resistant hero like a grasshopper mouse the poison might not bother him at all.

Blindness is another status effect that usually doesn't keep your character from acting; it doesn't interfere with your ability to find potions in your bag of holding, to guard against incoming attacks, to run away, or to aim your spells. The accuracy debuff might be -90%, -50% (most players would swear this was a -99%), -25% like Pokemon in Generation 1 (again, most players will swear this is at least -70%), or something pathetic like -6% (I'm pretty sure this is what a single Flash/Sand Attack does to accuracy in more recent Pokemon games) but in such cases it impacts all direct damage moves, as it ought to, and most of the debuff attacks of your own as well.
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Metal Slime
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 PostWed Aug 12, 2020 10:34 pm
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Apparently stat-boosting/lowering in Pokémon have a kind of complicated formula. The lowest your stats can go is 25% of max, the highest they can go is 400% max, and you need to have six layers of boosting/lowering to get to either of those. A single Sand Attack lowers accuracy to around 66-67%, the second one drops it to 50%, then to 40%, then to 33%, then to 28%, and finally to 25%. Boosting is a bit simpler since a single-stage stat boost just adds 1.5x each time (so it's 150% --> 200% --> 250% --> 300% --> 350% --> 400%.) And then when you mix stat-raising and stat-lowering moves together they just cancel each other out entirely rather than combining math-wise, so a single Tail Whip and a single Harden will completely neutralize each other even though positive effects boost stats more than negative effects lower them.

Of course, half the time 70% accuracy feels like you're missing half the time (looking at you, Thunder), 50% accuracy feels like it usually misses (Sing being 55% accuracy somehow seems to miss so much more often than Hypnosis at 60% even though the difference between their accuracy is so small...), and 30% accuracy (like the one-hit-KO moves) seems like "always misses." So I imagine it's pretty easy to overestimate the effect of accuracy/evade moves, especially if you don't consider that your moves might not have 100% hit rate to start with.

From what I can find, the amount that status-lowering moves affect Pokémon stats hasn't actually changed any in newer generations... though some of the formulas for battle-related things were terribly screwy in the first generation -- I know critical hit percentages were seriously messed up, to the point where the "high crit rate" moves were almost always critical normally... but trying to use Focus Energy to make them have critical hits even more often did the opposite due to overflowing the formula. Oops!

And I just realized that Pokémon-style stat boosting is probably possible to do in the OHRRPGCE already (just have an attack that boosts by 50% of the target's base stat, rather than current stat -- we can use target's base stat as part of damage formula now, right?), the only thing that might be tricky is replicating the 400%-of-base-stat limit, but I feel like there's probably some way to do that with chaining based on the target's stats...
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Puckamon -- Not until the reserve party is expanded.[/size]
Metal Slime
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 PostWed Aug 12, 2020 11:26 pm
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Having chains check against stat percentages above 100% has been around for a while, and it's something I've used a fair bit in my own projects, both to cap buffs and to have certain enemies switch up what they're doing once they've buffed up a bunch.

As for the hit percentages/crit chances:
-Hit percentages hurt the more that they matter, and they matter a huge amount in the high-lethality 1-on-1 nature of pokemon battles. Add this to human perception of rates [a 50% hit rate missing three times in a row feels like something's wrong, when in fact it's something that'll happen you on average more than 1 in 10 times], and the misses end up staying in your mind while the successes don't. A fun related fact is that in generations I and II, X Accuracy short-circuits the accuracy checks entirely, meaning OHKO moves go from a novelty to far and away the best strategy for running through things quickly [as long as you outspeed them in Gen I and outlevel them in Gen II].

-In generation 1, the critical hit rate is actually determined by the pokemon's base speed stat, and critical hits ignore all stat changes. This leads to fun stuff like boosting Attack being a waste of time on speedy pokemon, as the 8x boost high-crit chance moves get mean that they'll always critical hit with them.. Focus Energy is similarly useless, as it actually divides by 4 and so doesn't ever get the chance to overflow.

...not much of this is about status effects, actually, but I wanted to bring it up anyway.

[to bring this back around: giving a character a personal crit-rate boosting skill, or even basing critical hits off a character's speed, would very much be possible in the current engine. The second one wouldn't even require a significant change, if you already have critical hits around]
Metal Slime
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 PostThu Aug 13, 2020 12:44 am
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Feenicks wrote:
Focus Energy is similarly useless, as it actually divides by 4 and so doesn't ever get the chance to overflow.

Ahhhh, I knew there was something broken about Focus Energy back then but for some reason I mis-remembered it as an overflow issue rather than the attack just being straight up programmed wrong (kinda like how Ghost was supposed to be super effective against Psychic, there's even NPCs in the games that tell you it is... but actually it's completely ineffective. Though considering that the only damaging Ghost move anyone ever used in the 1st-gen games was Night Shade, which ignored weakness/resistance/immunity anyway, not much would change if that mistake was fixed.)
FYS:AHS -- Swapping out some step-on NPCs for zones + each step script
Puckamon -- Not until the reserve party is expanded.[/size]
Liquid Metal Slime
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 PostThu Aug 13, 2020 2:02 am
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Last week or so I was talking with Charbile on Discord about how one thing about status effects in the OHR is a lack of feedback to the player. You hit the monster with the Sleep spell and maybe it shows a number, but unlike your player characters getting icons next to their HP indicators, icons don't appear on the enemies. And unless you want to program transmogrifications as counterattacks for every individual when hit with every single status move you have, their sprites or palettes won't change either. You also can't have heroes forced into their Weak/Dead positions by "Stun/Sleep" or have their palette changed to grayscale and flinching disabled by "Stone" status.

Various guards in Wandering Hamster getting their equipment rusted when hit with bubble spells was really interesting. But would you do this for every possible enemy/spell interaction in any but the shortest, smallest-scale RPGs? I know I wouldn't. I usually use a combination of 8-Bit Graphics Set and Vikings of Midgard mixed with my own sprite work (old and new) as needed because it's so much more expedient.

So the monster is "asleep" but unlike most commercial RPGs, there isn't a reminder text caption every time the enemy misses a turn due to sleep and a reminder text caption on the turn where they first wake up. The sprite doesn't change into a sleeping pose and you don't have like Pokemon with a three letter abbreviation like "PSN" "PAR" "SLP" "FRZ" or "BRN" next to their name/level/HP/experience bar. Stun and Mute are also a lot harder to comprehend or track in ATB mode than in turn-based mode - turns are a lot easier to keep track of than counting seconds (which I swear are sometimes ticks instead) for a status affliction's duration.

Probably the easiest feedback would be to make those icons appear either next to the monster's name when being aimed at or over the top of the sprite itself using the same icon, font color, and outline pixels they have on the heroes' HP bars. Just remembering "Okay, this is the mage that passed his Mute save, gotta kill him first" or "This is the monster that's asleep, time for the Thief to Coup de Grace him" - perhaps this being disabled by default for the purpose of retaining old aesthetics in old games.
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