Willpower vs Essence

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Post by H.Banestone » Sun Feb 06, 2011 7:29 am

Willpower vs Essence

I apologize for the topic, but i tried searching for an answer, and did not find this.
I don't believe this is a "find out ingame" type question, because as a player I kinda need to know what character I am creating.

When it comes to essense and willpower, I have experimented with characters to some extent, and I find that those two stats do not do what descriptions say. Essense does not seem to do anything with magic resistance, but instead, grants a mana bar, where as willpower on the other hand seems to help in deflecting magic. In description of essense, it states if you have low essense, that you can be easily influenced by magic, but this is misleading to a new player, quite a bit. Even if I am making a mage, I shouldn't have to max both essense and willpower, it would be nice to know exactly what they do for a magical character, so that a player can make a conscious choice between one and the other, not just have a mysterious "oh, i guess i'll just max em both, coz i have no idea what they do". You know what I mean?

Could there be an explanation, why the flavor descriptions of those two stats are reversed? Is there something I am missing? Can someone please give a straight answer?

Thank you.

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Post by Pugnacious » Sun Feb 06, 2011 8:35 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

According to the Wiki page, it is willpower that gives you magic resistance. During the character creation it seems that essence is the trait for this. I have chose to go with the wiki. This seems to be right . But you are correct, there is no good way to know this. I think some more clarification is needed here. I do know if I have put at least some points to each I can be able to mount a fair defense, but that is at the expense of being able to put those points elsewhere.

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Post by Grokk » Sun Feb 06, 2011 9:52 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Solution: Stop exploiting the character creation system. Illarion isn't (shouldn't be) the place for 'builds' and 'min-maxing'.

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Post by Llama » Sun Feb 06, 2011 9:55 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Grokk wrote:Solution: Stop exploiting the character creation system. Illarion isn't (shouldn't be) the place for 'builds' and 'min-maxing'.
Solution 2: Stop making the illarion system so dependant on the character creation system. I'm all the one for arguing about the importance of roleplay - but when my mage can't teach rune X because of some arbitrary value is not high enough...

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Post by H.Banestone » Sun Feb 06, 2011 10:18 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Grokk wrote:Solution: Stop exploiting the character creation system. Illarion isn't (shouldn't be) the place for 'builds' and 'min-maxing'.
Yeah, don't give me that jazz. What Llama said pretty much.
When I realize that I can't read because my intelligence is a point lower than it should be, or can't dodge, because it was dexterity instead of agility, or don't hold any mana, cause my essense is 8 and not 10, it gets pretty frustrating to realize you just created a "black box" wonder of failure.

And I didn't say anything about min maxing. The stats can be balanced any way I want. I am saying - I as a player should know precisely what the stats do. If you want to simulate randomized child birth, just roll random stats, sure. But since I am given manual controls of those sliding bars, I want my decisions to be thought out. Controlling my stats has nothing, nil, zero - to do with quality of my roleplay or character portrayal. I'm not gonna be any worse or any better of a roleplayer if I know what my stats are rigged towards.

Something that disturbs me a little about community of players here, is i keep seeing a lot of such replies as Grokk's. Not at all trying to insult Grokk, but it's kind of a "small game" mentality, that the system is perfect in its black box realism, it works well as it is, etc. Believe me, i do like the idea of not having numbers in the game for health, mana, quality, damage, etc. But if numbers exist in stats creation, it should be better explained, and in advance, not afterwards when the char is made. Not knowing what your char can do, until you try the action, and realize you failed in your stats - puts a player in position of little to no control, they have to reroll. So you spend months learning magic theory to realize you cannot be taught a rune. So you have to reroll a character, or just accept its fate. The staff seems to be planning to expand the game to attract a bigger player base. Well, if they aim to do that, it's obvious that we will have to come to terms with a simple fact that a grant majority of mainstream gamers do not like their characters to suck. From what I have seen, good 70-75% of characters I met suck at what they do, because their stats aren't right for it.

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Post by Rincewind » Sun Feb 06, 2011 11:58 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Well, I got the same problem recently. Well, your behaviours are straight oposite to the things I found out. Well - if you stay close to the arch-typos (mage, knight, archer...) you will have good attributes. We don't know right now, but maybee the influneces of the attributes will change with the VBU or sooner or later. So it's basicly not the best idea to minimate attributes that mutch. Especially if you makeing a mage, I wold not put less attriputes to the "magic" attributes then the battlemage does.

I hope that helps you out!
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Last edited by Rincewind on Sun Feb 06, 2011 12:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Felbion Lijawyn » Sun Feb 06, 2011 12:08 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Essence: Manabar ("magical perception" rpwise, which would explain the description given by the character creation system a bit, though that IS confusing)
Willpower: Magic Resistance

That said, get at least 15+ on both and Essence preferably even higher if you want a serious "mage-mage"

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Post by Flux » Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:56 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Max out int and ess for quick learning and good mana, nevermind willpower; it doesn't make a huge difference without magic resistance and barely anyone has trained MR to a useable level.

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Post by Juliana D'cheyne » Sun Feb 06, 2011 3:04 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

I fully agree that when you choose your char the maximizing of skills should make less difference then the RP, however being able to RP your char with background along with story requires the element of being able to get the skills desired for that char. If you have no idea what your char will be, then the general skills work well. If you want a specific profession, later on you may find those skills aren't helpful and even the 2 point change allowed may not be enough to give what you need in order to fit the background and the desired roleplay for that char envisioned on creation. The choice is either 1. change the background 2. work even harder then most to get to that ideal IF you keep the char which most do being involved in other RP aspects not related to skill.

Back to the original question...I found in order to portal with a mage the essence had to be fairly high but things have changed already...now it seems it is difficult to teach magic and I don't know the "formula" for that.
Last edited by Juliana D'cheyne on Sun Feb 06, 2011 3:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Flux » Sun Feb 06, 2011 3:15 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

"Influence by magic" could mean influenced by the casting of magic, such that it quickly drains the person, rather than deflection of magic.

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Post by Grokk » Sun Feb 06, 2011 7:34 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

H.Banestone wrote:Something that disturbs me a little about community of players here, is i keep seeing a lot of such replies as Grokk's. Not at all trying to insult Grokk, but it's kind of a "small game" mentality, that the system is perfect in its black box realism, it works well as it is, etc.
Don't get me wrong, I think the system is as shit as the next guy. Probably more so. It's completely inappropriate for Illarion. But I think that the mindset that has developed in regards to this area is equally as shit. And this thread seems to show that we are all guilty of it.

When character stats come into play, everything IC and RP-related just seems to be the thrown out the window. We immediately start talking about 'builds' and 'maxing'. Willpower is increased because a PO wants their character to have decent magic resistance, not because their character is a persuasive speaker or of a determined nature. That other PO didn't take the minimum agility for a character because they were a sickly child and now have a lame leg, making it a struggle to walk, they took it because they needed the points to max out their intelligence so that their magic would do more damage. Sometimes POs will roleplay their characters' strengths (stat-wise), but for the most part, statistics have zero bearing on RP. Weaknesses are virtually never represented IG. According to the character pages, plenty of warriors should be stuttering, easily-manipulated fools. And most mages should be frail, sickly, and confined to wheelchairs.

The system is a mess, absolutely. But that doesn't mean we need to exploit it until it gets fixed. We have templates upon character creation. If people were content with just 'being able to do' something, then choosing the corresponding template would suffice. But they aren't. They want their character to be the best.

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Post by Flux » Sun Feb 06, 2011 9:23 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

^ Grokk is truth.

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Post by H.Banestone » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:27 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Flux wrote:Max out int and ess for quick learning and good mana, nevermind willpower; it doesn't make a huge difference without magic resistance and barely anyone has trained MR to a useable level.
I've seen a few characters stand inside a fire for over a minute. Is that effect of high willpower?

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Post by ltgmkay » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:35 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

H.Banestone wrote:
Flux wrote:Max out int and ess for quick learning and good mana, nevermind willpower; it doesn't make a huge difference without magic resistance and barely anyone has trained MR to a useable level.
I've seen a few characters stand inside a fire for over a minute. Is that effect of high willpower?
Magic flame?

Sounds more like effect of high magic resistance.

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Post by Athian » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:37 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

You mean me mostly don't you ^^ ?

Flames are not entirely magic. They are an item with a set quality when they are created. if magic resistance>quality then you will take little to no damage from the flame, or you will put the flame out entirely. There are times when low quality flames are cast (like when you wiff on a spell) that even people with little to no magic resistance are able to put out. certain monsters also produce very low quality flames, but most people just don't spend long enough inside one to tell the difference. this phenomenon is more related to the flame rather then the magic resistance.

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Post by H.Banestone » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:41 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Well if we gonna go with names, Athian, Avalyon, Whisper. :)


I'd like to comment on what Grokk said. I do agree with that side of the discussion, but maybe then willpower stat could be renamed? I mean, I've never seen a game where willpower, which most affects RP and my character's personality, was an actual stat. I mean, why does it have to be? If I want to give my character flaws, I don't need stats to do it for me. But i do want to play a game, which means to have my character be good at certain tasks I plan doing with them.
For example, I have a fighter, and by his story, he cannot read, because he was never taught to. However, I did not set his intelligence to 3 to reflect that. He has a decent intelligence, well over 10, and I think we shouldn't force people to link their characters' personal flaws to stats. Sure, a person can be weak willed, easily seduced, or manipulated, but that's an Rp manner, a professionalism.
If you wanna weed out bad RP, maybe create a system of player applications, like a questionaire where users would tell about themselves before being allowed into the game.
But we shouldn't be harsh to players for optimizing characters either. Effective characters are fun to play. I don't mean perfect, I mean effective.
I mean, even in RP quests, people celebrate the victors, the heroes. They don't go "ooh, props to Johnny the Peasant, he was so pro at hiding in the bushes and running away when the dragons attacked". People with no skills or bad builds - pretty much have to run away whenever some exciting violent quest happens. Only the pro asskickers stay around for those fun events. But that is a different point entirely.

Trying to say, that if you want to have flaws in stats, by all means, but make them clearly explained, what flaw will this stat introduce, and what the consequence will be.
I guess I am trying to say... optimizing characters and good roleplay are not mutually exclusive. A weaker character doesn't make you a better RPer, in fact it kinda makes you worse and more confused. I met a character who was studying to be an offensive caster, and kept using daggers, having no idea that daggers were a terrible choice for the stats. Turns out the character was much better with bows, but had no idea, because it never occurred to try a bow, having good perception. So, realistically speaking, why would a person who drops everything from their hands keep using daggers? People in real life are aware of their skill sets.

I confused myself to the point of not knowing which side of the issue I am defending, so I think i'll stop at that :D

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Post by Estralis Seborian » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:45 am

Re: Willpower vs Essence

We're totally aware that the use of attributes is currently unclear. We're working on that. Be patient. We're aiming at simplifying the influences of attribute, currently, fighting may involve up to 7 attributes...

However, it is NOT a solution to rename a stat or change its meaning entirely. But I'm pretty sure you're aware of this and just want to give a little provocative statement :-P. Also, writing an application before being able to play Illarion was one of the worst ideas the staff had. Ever. We did this, it was a utter failure. We tend not to repeat mistakes.

I guess the original question was answered by Grokk; the current tragic system with many components is a total mess. So, if a stat does not do what would be obvious, that is one of the things that needs to be worked on. And believe it or not, we found this "problem" months ago and it is already fixed at the testserver.

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Post by Owain » Mon Feb 07, 2011 1:49 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

I have heard that Willpower effect how long you can skill for and Inteligence effect how quick you can do it.

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Post by Felbion Lijawyn » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:31 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Grokk wrote:
H.Banestone wrote:Something that disturbs me a little about community of players here, is i keep seeing a lot of such replies as Grokk's. Not at all trying to insult Grokk, but it's kind of a "small game" mentality, that the system is perfect in its black box realism, it works well as it is, etc.
Don't get me wrong, I think the system is as shit as the next guy. Probably more so. It's completely inappropriate for Illarion. But I think that the mindset that has developed in regards to this area is equally as shit. And this thread seems to show that we are all guilty of it.

When character stats come into play, everything IC and RP-related just seems to be the thrown out the window. We immediately start talking about 'builds' and 'maxing'. Willpower is increased because a PO wants their character to have decent magic resistance, not because their character is a persuasive speaker or of a determined nature. That other PO didn't take the minimum agility for a character because they were a sickly child and now have a lame leg, making it a struggle to walk, they took it because they needed the points to max out their intelligence so that their magic would do more damage. Sometimes POs will roleplay their characters' strengths (stat-wise), but for the most part, statistics have zero bearing on RP. Weaknesses are virtually never represented IG. According to the character pages, plenty of warriors should be stuttering, easily-manipulated fools. And most mages should be frail, sickly, and confined to wheelchairs.

The system is a mess, absolutely. But that doesn't mean we need to exploit it until it gets fixed. We have templates upon character creation. If people were content with just 'being able to do' something, then choosing the corresponding template would suffice. But they aren't. They want their character to be the best.

I just wanted to add that this isn't entirely true. I myself only maxed Felbion's stats in Int, Ess and Will cause you need a really high number (I'm not sure if I'm allowed to say the number so I won't) when you combine these three stats to be able to teach students (which is what my goal was at the time I created Felbs). I try to RP Felbion smart, calm, sensitive to his surroundings and wise because it fits (one of) my image(s) of a magic teacher, but I also try to toss his bad eyes, slow feet or weak muscles in every now and then.

Just yesterday, I had an RP with a dwarf who rped his really high str (being very muscular and strong) but ALSO rped the lack of intelligence of his char. I know a lot of other people who rp the weaknesses their chars have due to maxed builds. (Nearly all of the orcs e.g.)

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Post by Flux » Mon Feb 07, 2011 4:01 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

That's more of a characteristic of the orc race. People play orcs with average intelligence as if they're morons too. There are very few people who properly follow the attributes as described in their character's profile page. i.e. 3 con = You are permanently sick etc. 3 perc = Someone has to jump around in your face and shout at you to get you to respond, rather than you just clairvoyantly turning round as soon as they enter your screen to say hello.

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Post by Kevin Lightdot » Mon Feb 07, 2011 8:23 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Orcs are actually smart, they just make you think they're retarded so you won't notice when they take over the world.

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Post by Qeewee » Mon Feb 07, 2011 8:44 pm

Re: Willpower vs Essence

Kevin Lightdot wrote:Orcs are actually smart, they just make you think they're retarded so you won't notice when they take over the world.
Shh! Don't ruin our secret!

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