Are humans lategame-focused?

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Are humans lategame-focused?

Postby choongmyoung on Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:00 am

According to current wiki description, humans are more lategame-focused like Gnome or Halfling, though they have bonus at low-mid levels. They are treated as "convert late" race.

I think it's not true, and humans have power at any level except lv1. It's because humans get percentage bonus to your power, and your standard on power is how much percentage you are stronger. For example, character with 33% resists is 50% stonger than standard character. (Outside of mana usage)

I'm not talking about orcs (or other base damage increase). Compared to orcs humans are more lategame-focused, but humans are not lategame focused at its own. It's just orcs being earlygame-focused.

I excluded lv1 because sometimes you will get no bonus from converting, as your base damage is 5. This disadvantage disappears from being lv2, where you can always get 10% bonus.

What do you think?
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Re: Are humans lategame-focused?

Postby General_Milky on Tue Nov 14, 2017 7:36 am

I think the point of the wiki mentioning that isn't really to say that humans specifically only see significant boosts late, but that the boosts scale with level so they're a good race to play if you like leaving glyphs and crap around just in case. ANY damage tends to be good damage, so yeah, they're good pretty much always and not only just at level 8-9.

Compare this to orc, vampire, rats, or any other race that generally needs you to decide to keep or convert a glyph the moment you see it just because the immediate early bonus is where they shine. At the end of the day, those boosts, like human, get better and better the later in the game it is, but unlike human there's a certain pressure to make the decision to convert NOW. Humans can get away with a "we'll see" for a while because the temptation to convert NOW isn't as strong...

So yeah, I agree that humans are not a late race. They fit in more with something like Dwarf than the potion races. Not really late gamers so much as all-gamers, flexible and adaptable depending on strategy.

Another interpretation of the wiki's claim is probably the "fact" (I've never actually checked and mathed it out. Seems hard, especially when you take class bonuses, extra attack booster preps, and factor in items) that humans end up with higher damage than orcs at the upper levels, therefore their true potential is only unlocked if you can go all the way to 9 or 10, hence "late game" fighters in comparison to an orc who can convert for lots of damage in low-mid levels but (supposedly) falls behind past that. Really, to be honest, I find it hard to classify any race as early game or late game or whatever just because there's potential use for pretty much every racial ability at all stages of the game. Even halflings and gnomes have conceivable reason to convert everything super early for an "early game spike" via potions to catapult up in levels and whatnot. Desktop Dungeons tends to be more open ended and flexible than to definitively say any sort of conversion bonus is "only" worth it at a specific point in the current map. The real question is less "when is this conversion bonus useful?" and more "Is the conversion bonus more useful than the thing I'm looking at right now?" Sometimes, you just don't plan on using weytwut because an alternative is present and would simply just like a 10% boost instead to help you just barely regen fight a harder monster, game phase be damned.

My two cents.
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Re: Are humans lategame-focused?

Postby choongmyoung on Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:57 am

Unless you're a Crusader with 100%+ momentum or under Binlor with stronger attack class, I'm pretty sure that humans always win orcs at lv10 practically. Anyway, I'm not comparing humans with orcs, I'm just talking about humans.

So yeah, I understand and agree to your point - humans are not lategame-focused, they just are not in hurry for converting things, just like elves or dwarves.

The conversion is worth it at some point for these races. Fireball-casting elves are desperate to convert things at 17 mana but are not in hurry at 18 mana. Dwarves are desperate to convert things to barely tank one more hit but are not in hurry just after the line. Humans are somewhat similar; they are desperate to convert things at edge case but are not in hurry after that. But since humans' racial bonus help regen-fighting, after the point that you win at regen, humans are always happy to convert things because it conserves blackspaces.

After all, my opinions:
Human, Elf, Dwarf, Half-Dragon: They have flat percentage bonus to your power, no matter what your level is. They want to convert things early on to use bonuses for the rest of the game, but they are not in hurry. They don't get stronger neither weaker along you level up.
Vampire: Although Vampires also have flat bonus to their power, they really can't to anything without their conversion bonus. So you must convert things early on to start the game.
Rat Monarch, Orc: Similar to Vampires, but these guys have degrading bonus to your power along you level up. In order to use their true power these guys have to convert things early on and they are quite in hurry, but not as nessecerily as vampy. (I'm not sure about the rats though.)
Halfling, Gnome: They don't need to convert things unless you really need to. Their bonus exist to spike, but it doesn't help you after that point at all. (There are some exception like alchemist's scroll or an halfling under Dracul)
Goblin, Goatperson: Similar to above guys, but these guys cannot procrastinate to get the conversion bonus, so these guys should be careful about the inventory management.
Gorgon: No.
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Re: Are humans lategame-focused?

Postby dislekcia on Tue Nov 14, 2017 10:53 pm

As I understood it the logic of that specific wording in the wiki was that generally whatever benefit you'd receive from any glyph or most items would outweigh the conversion bonus until a specific point. For Humans, that's generally some point in the midgame when you know what your specific focus is going to be for the upcoming lategame. Humans are thus more flexible, hence being considered a late-game conversion race.
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Re: Are humans lategame-focused?

Postby Bwrgarbl on Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:17 pm

You can't separate orcs and humans on this one. They both provide the same benefit, but in a different way. And choosing one is also not choosing the other. You have the choice between the two, and which one is better to take depends entirely on if you need leverage early or if you have a long enough dungeon for human to pay off. Remember, it's not just when the damage bonus equalizes that things switch to human... a properly played orc should be ahead of the game for a while after, simply because they had a huge advantage to leverage which will save them resources and get them early opportunities.

But it's not just that... if you want to get into the nitty gritty, then potion races aren't really late game either, because no one truly is. The value of a conversion is negative unless it's pivotal. You lose access to an item (negative) and if you don't immediately gain anything the utility of doing it at that time is zero. An Orc has an easier time than most at hitting a pivotal condition at the start... if you convert a lot at the start and get +10 damage then you can probably use it to get a kill you wouldn't get otherwise. However, if you just use fireballs, the balanced dagger, and final melee hits that overkill level 1 monsters by 10 or more, then the move was of negative value. Sure, that +10 is going to get you some benefit eventually, but the fact is that you could have deferred the decision to convert until that moment and kept all your options (of the converted items and any gold you spent)... having it for a longer time (ie "converting early to get the benefit for the rest of the game") doesn't matter until you actually use the benefits (and that's when you should convert).

A human might do the same... convert a lot and get +2. And if that's exactly what they needed to kill a monster then it could well be a positive move. "Could be" because the kill might not be worth the opportunity cost of losing those items and gold... this is true for both, but the orc is probably getting a much bigger kill (ie level 4 instead of level 2). So the human could have early conversions as correct (while an orc not), but the odds are not in their favour (+10 gives a lot more opportunities and better quality ones too). And so the orc is simply much more likely to benefit you early on... humans are much less likely so, but are definitely going to get you better numbers in a long dungeon. And so going in, humans should always play for the long game, and orcs for the short. But not to the point that they ignore tactics.

And this applies to a halfling just as much... if making a potion is exactly what you need now (probably worshiping JJ) then it's correct to do it regardless of the time in the game. Potions are fungible... it doesn't make a difference if you use a potion you made now and a potion off the ground later for the boss or vice versa, because they're all the same. All that matters is that when you convert you do it for a benefit you need now. It could just be the slot, or it could be for piety for a boon (or to take a penalty)... with a halfling, these are the more common reasons, and so we look at them as late game focused (in that the potion gained was a side effect that you can horde for later).

And personally, I don't find vampires need to convert to "start the game". I often don't bother converting until level 3 or 4 even... but then I go heavy (you want at least 3 levels right away), because at that point, I'll have the level 1s and 2s available for double rate drains that I can use to heal and get good kills. But again, if a level of life drain is exactly what's needed for a good kill at level 1, then I'll convert. Orcs and rats have a really good chance of making use of level one conversions immediately, a vampire has much less.

And I've had a bit of success with heavy Gorgon conversion as a strategy when Frank shows up. You can't poison him, and having nice hits for the last 40% or more can be a big deal. A bit is always good, in that it opens up more opportunities to get firstest strike to finish off opponents faster and save you blackspace for your regen fighting. But I always feel like I need a little more reason than just that.
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Re: Are humans lategame-focused?

Postby choongmyoung on Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:07 pm

Okay, hmmm... I understand your point. Let me explain your opinion again:

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Virtually no race is "lasting" or "spikey". Potion races can use their potion to get bonuses which will last forever (such as specific boons or bonus exp), and in that case they are getting "lasting" bonus. Orc is certainly early game focused (everyone agree on this point, right?) but he is largely same as human: they convert things at "right moment" to get bonus exp. This "right moment" is a kind of "spike", just like some potion race runs.
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Okay- I agree to your point, because there are always some edge cases. Still I have some opinions on there.

First, when we are talking about the optimal plays, all races will convert things at the right exact moment. But the right exact point tends to come early on for some races (human, dwarf, etc) and tends to come later on (because spiking phase kinda always is boss hunting) for some other races (goatperson, gnome, etc). For example, a gnome can use his couple of mana potions early to score a big kill, that's a good move, but if the boss is Tormented One then the optimal play would prababily be not doing it. They lose their ability to mana-spike. However, a human isn't the case. If you convert two glyphs early to score a big kill, the conversion bonus would still apply pretty much the same at the latter part of the game.

That's the part where elves and gnomes are distinguished. An elf can gain one extra max mana to kill a thing; that can be considered as a spike. An gnome can use on extra mana potion to kill a thing; that's equally a spike. But elf's power is not lowered afterward, while gnome's power is lost, leaving only some exp bonus there. Let's say, you're elf and in an early game stage, and an early conversion gives you a small spike right now. But the mana-enlarged elf will get a small spike quite a lot afterwards. You don't get anything from hesitating in this case, you just lose your early little spike. That's why I consider an elf as "lasting" race. The same goes for other "lasting" races.

I think seperating "lasting" and "spikey" races is a good way to approach in general cases. You said a halfling sacrificing a health potion to take boost health boon is quite like a... let's say, a dwarf. A degrading dwarf, like the orc version of dwarf. Okay, that makes perfect sense. But it's an special case and I don't think there are many situations for potion races that gives you a permanent bonus outside of exp. (Pleasing Dracul to take some boons / alchemist's scroll comes in mind here) You need some specific thing for them to get a "lasting" bonus, and I personally think that is some kind of different halfling, namely a "Dracul-Halfling" race, which is similar to human. Outside of that usage, for cases which uses potions to refill health and mana, the only lasting bonus is exp. (Speaking of halfling, halflings have kinda high chance to find something that interacts with health potions, so if your viewpoint about haflings are like they usually interact with them - then they are more a "lasting" race for your playstyle.)

I'd like to say exp works differently from other permanent bonuses, because you will get less exp when you have a bigger start, or gaining a level is very strong compared to others, you are primarily using your resources to gain levels (and then resources' efficiency level up altogether) before a certain choking point, etc.

To sum up, you are right and I agree, all races will convert things at the right moment. But because their abilities are different their "right moment" will come up differently. In general cases humans get everlasting bonus, orcs get degrading bonus, halflings get nothing other than exp. Thus, orcs will "desperately" convert things, because it is super likely that one full conversion being super powerful right now, and the chance that the conversion will help you later is also very high. One full conversion of Gorgon, however, have less chance. That makes all the difference for when to convert and when not to.
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