31 December 2017

Starting Into The New Year

A new year is approaching I've started writing this post at 2:00pm UTC. So only 10 hours until the new year. Get your timers ready!! HYPE!

Anyways...

During My Childhood

We always celebrated new years either at home or at a friend's family, sitting on the couch watching the television program eating all kinds of snacks, sweets until the typical final countdown of the year. Once the timer reaches zero - the obligatory new years welcoming celebratory shout followed by some smaller firecrackers. Afterward, it's going out watching fireworks explode and also starting our own. Well, at least the adults. We children got those beans that explode when thrown on the ground, not that it mattered much. Unfortunately, I always had an issue with loud noises - Sylvester, church organs, concerts - I either had to put something in my ears or close them with my hands. Even a vacuum cleaner is almost too loud. I walk away from them like a cat. So getting older...

Teenage Celebration 

I started to celebrate the new year like I would celebrate anything. Chatting with people I like online and playing video games. I basically celebrated by doing what I like. Nothing wrong with it, right? I would watch the fireworks from my windows, or the windows of the house, still enjoying the view, but avoiding the smoke, the smell of gunpowder and the loud noises. I didn't mind this I enjoyed it just as much as with anyone else, though I felt bad for not celebrating with my family.

Celebration Now

Now it's back to what it was before, except that I'm not participating in friends' families celebration. Now I usually stay at home and celebrate with whoever's there, drinking some festive cocktails and enjoying the fireworks from either inside or outside depending on whether or not someone is there who got some so to say, heh.

Celebration This Year

So this year, I'm gonna be home alone with my brother since my parents are celebrating with their friends in a nearby city. I don't know what is planned exactly but the way I know him it's probably going to be cocktails and gaming this year. Not that I mind! I enjoy this kind of way. Besides being home alone with only my brother allows me to do some new year's rituals.

New Years Rituals

A new year is an abrupt change. The old is left behind and the new will come and it only takes an extremely short amount of time to flip. The best part: due to these "timers" counting down the last 24 hours there's a kind of energy accumulating. With each second the year's end comes near. With each second the excitement increases. All this energy and emotions can be channeled into a ritual just nicely. So what could a typical new year's ritual be about? Simple. You know how people make themselves a set of things they want to improve or do differently in the next year?

Let Go of the Old - Embrace A New Chance

Just think about everything you didn't like, everything you hated, everything you want to change but relate these things to the current year. You can either do this the whole year or the last seconds or minutes. Once the clock switches to midnight wish it gone and think about the new year (positively) what it brings, the improvement, the change. Don't look back to the old year and what happened. Even better after you're done thinking about the new year forget about the future and live in the now. This will allow everything of the old year to be gone and the second part will allow the energies to weave the improved future, the improved year.

So this is at least the idea behind it. You could also write everything of the old year, or throughout 2018 on a paper and burn it exactly at midnight focusing on how it's gone and start a-new on a new paper with a new year and new goals.

Like with the Christmas rituals, all you have to do is convince your unconsciousness. If done right, it might be enough.


By the way, a small post like the Christmas one. I just want to use this to tell a bit about my life and share some ritual ideas with anyone interested in giving it a try or to get people an idea of how these celebrations can be used for rituals. I mean if the atmosphere is there and the energies are there too, why not use them?

Well, Happy New Year everyone! A year, where life - hopefully - is fully enjoyable for me too.
A new year full of new blog posts.

30 December 2017

Guild Wars 2: PvP Season - How Many Matches?

The PvP Season ends in about two days. A bit late to make the post now. Luckily you know for the next season! But...

Why Should I Play the PvP Season?

Like the World vs World skirmish reward chests/tracks or however you want to call them, the PvP season also has season rewards next to the usual reward tracks. We've got 6 reward chests which reward Shards of Glory, Unidentified Dyes, Transmutation Charges, Silver and Gold as well as PvP League Tickets and Ascended Shards of Glory in each last chest per tier. Additionally the last 3 tiers (persimmon, amaranth, and Byzantium) reward Boxes of Grandmaster Marks, which contain the tokens required for ascended gear. Oh and the all beloved Llama Mini Choice Box from the last chest. The last chest is also repeatable with lower rewards.

Completing all the chests without repetition rewards you with:

  • 560 Shards of Glory
  • 34 Unidentified Dyes
  • 83 gold 85 silver
  • 44 Transmutation Charges
  • 100 PvP League Tickets
  • 400 Ascended Shards of Glory
  • 3 Boxes of Grandmaster Marks
  • 1 Llama Mini Choice Box
Alright, let's go! So...

What Does It Take?


To get through all the chests without repeating the last one it takes 670 pips. Pips are awarded for each match and differ depending on several factors like in WvW but a little bit different here. The factors are:

  • Winning / Losing the match
  • At least one top stat
  • Close match
  • Division
If you win a game you get ten pips if you lose you get three pips. Having at least one top stat awards an extra pip. If you lose the game but you were close to winning, you're awarded two extra pips. Also depending on which division you play in you may get two to four extra pips. That's two pips for platinum and four pips for legendary.

Simple Maths

Since we can't say whether or not we win the match or how the match will be going we need to calculate with a range assuming the worst and best-case scenario. Something we can do, however, is calculated for each division we play in.

For lower than platinum division we get three to eleven pips each match. Requiring to get 670 pips that means we need between 670 / 3 = 223.33 and 670 / 11 =  60.91 matches. So 61 to 224 matches.

Playing in the platinum division will earn you five to 13 pips each match. With the requirement of 670 pips in this division we need 670 / 5 = 134 to 670 / 13 = 51.54 matches. That's 52 to 134 matches.

As a player of the legendary division, the reward will be from seven to 15 pips each match. These players will still need 670 pips but only 670 / 7 = 95.71 to 670 / 15 = 44.67  matches. This is only 45 to 96 matches.

On the other hand, if we assume the 50-50 rule works as intended we expect to win 50% of our matches and losing the other 50% as it should be. Then we expect to get 3 * 50% + 10 * 50% = 6.5  pips each match without the extra pips. So between 6.5 on average. In the best case, we would get 1 extra pip always and 2 pips from the close one if we lose. So it's 6 * 50% + 11 * 50% = 8.5 pips now.

Going with this we have between 670 / 6.5 = 103.08 and 670 / 8.5 = 78.82 or 79 and 104 matches for players below platinum division.

For the platinum division itself, we just need to add 2 to both our numbers. That means we get 670 / 8.5 = 78.82 to 670 / 10.5 = 63.81 or 64 to 79 matches for players in the platinum division.

And last but not least we have the legendary division who now only need 670 / 10.5 = 63.81 to 670 / 12.5 = 53.6 so 54 to 64 matches.

What About Time Consumption?

Calculating the time consumption is kinda difficult as it differs from each time you play in. Though you can take the average duration of each match and multiply this with the number of matches you need, I want to keep that calculation for another post. If you want you can see this as homework and the next post as a solution to that homework, heh. :P

Daily Matches 

I always do similar calculations to this when a new season starts to check out how many daily matches I need to complete the season in the end. Same like I did with the Wintersday achievements. 

This season started on the 7th of November and ends on the 1st January according to the wiki or 2nd January according to my in-game PvP interface. That's 56 days. We know how many matches we need so let's go down the list:

Non-expected range lower than platinum:
61 / 56 = 1.09 to 224 / 56 = 4: win 1-2 matches a day or lose 4 matches a day
Non-expected range in the platinum division:
52 / 56 = 0.93 to 134 / 56 = 2.39: win 1 match almost every day or lose 3.
Non-expected range in the legendary division:
45 / 56 = 0.80 to 96 / 56 =  1.71: win 1 match or lose 2 matches a day.
Expected range lower than platinum:
 79 / 56 = 1.41 to 104 / 56 = 1.86: win up to 2 matches or lose up to 2 matches each day.
Expected range in the platinum division:
64 / 56 = 1.14 to 79 / 56 = 1.41: win 2 matches each day or lose 2 matches.
Expected range in the legendary division:
54 / 56 = 0.96 to 64 / 56 =  1.14: win 1 match or lose a little bit more than 1 match a day.

As you can see, a win a day is a safe way to get through the season.

29 December 2017

WildStar: Currency Exchange

Currencies allow you to buy stuff in games. Unfortunately, most currencies have only a limited amount of items or objects that you can buy. So what happens is that you start to accumulate these.

Short On Gold and Platin?

Runing and C.R.E.D.D. are expensive in WildStar. Imagine you have a rune, removing it costs seven platinum, buying or crafting it costs 12 platinum. If this happens multiple times you're quickly losing your money. When you're left on the bottom, the next logical step would be to start farming again, right? Well not necessarily. If you have less than 10 platinum left but 30000 elder gems, 500000 renown and/or 50000 prestige - maybe, just maybe - there is a way to convert these currencies into gold and platinum. If you have bought everything there is, you don't really need those currencies anymore, do you?

Let's Start With Elder Gems

(late edit: if you don't need elder gems to make sure to keep your elder gems below 2000, most optimal would be exactly 2000)
For the elder gem currency, there's only one vendor and this are the categories he offers:
  • Housing
  • General Goods
  • Mounts
  • Costumes
  • Runecrafting
The next step is to go through even categories and look at each item. First, we need to check which items we can buy and which items we can sell as well as whether or not it's a container with a fix or random item like the dye packs. In the housing category, we have 3 different housing items. We look at the price of the items as well as their sell price, then we divide the selling price through the cost to determine how much each of our elder gems is worth if we're selling this item. We're searching for the highest worth of a single elder gem.

Item Cost Sell Price Price per Currency
Datascape Window 20 6750 6750 / 20 = 337.5
Tiki Lounge 50 6750 6750 / 50 = 135
Ferris Wheel FABkit 100 8437 8437 / 100 = 84.37
Null Space Container 70 5625 5625 / 70 = 80.36
Elder Coin Pouch 250 7031 7031 / 250 = 28.12
AMP Power Upgrade 320 14062 14062 / 320 = 43.94
Ability Tier Point Unlock 400 14062 14062 / 400 = 35.15
Mount Stuff A  175 1 1 / 175 =  0.01
Mount Stuff B 175 419 419 / 175 = 2.39
Best Costumes 20 1 1 / 20 = 0.05

As you may have noticed I didn't list every option. Even the last options were unnecessary. Looking at the cost and selling price you might already notice that something is not worth it if - for example - the cost is higher than the selling price but there's an item where the selling price is higher than the cost. So looking at our table it is safe to say the datascape window is worth the most for each elder gem spent in it. We get 3 silver and 37.5 copper for each elder gem spent into the datascape window. Side note: you need to sell it after buying to actually get the money. :P

Next Currency: Glory

Glory, the currency of raids and dungeons. So what do we do with this one when we got everything that is or was useful? Let's check out the items sold. Again these are quite a lot so we'll be looking for obvious competing ones. For now, let's start at the top.

Item Cost Sell Price Price per Currency
Experienced Dungeon Traverser's Keen Cap 625 34222 34222 / 625 = 54.76
Experienced Dungeon Traverser's Keen Wrap 700 42778 42778 / 700 = 61.11
Experienced Dungeon Traverser's Keen Slippers 550 29944 29944 / 550 = 54.44
Bioweave Phagehelm 1150 62208 62208 / 1150 = 54.09
Bioweave Phagemail 1300 77760 77760 / 1300 = 59.81
Bioweave Phageboots 1000 54432 54432 / 1000 = 54.43
Electroweave Datamail 2350 113535 113535 / 2350 = 48.31
Renown Pouch 50 1500 * 0.62 = 930  930 / 50 = 18.6

From all the items we calculated those that seemed to be relevant and from this selected the Experienced Dungeon Traverser's Keen Wrap brings us the most copper. 61.11 copper for every glory spent on this item. Only downside: we need to wait an hour to be able to sell that item for the gold we want.

Player Vs Player Currency: Prestige

Tomorrow / Today - depending on where you live - the violets for PvP Battlegrounds will reset. Participating in these gives us the PvP currency called prestige. If we're not interested in PvP or got our equip done already, what's the best thing to buy? Let's find out! Let's start with the PvP Seasonal Gear. Why? I have my reasons. This order makes it easier. ;)

The trick behind this is that if we start off with items that already look good we can filter out all the bad conversions by having a high comparison between buying and selling. For example, the first item in our list costs 3000 prestige and gives us 27562 copper. That means we get about 9 times the value in copper from one prestige.

Item Cost Sell Price Price per Currency
Renegade's Fusillade Flexsuit 3000 27562 27562 / 3000 = 9.19
Renegade's Fusillade Crown 2400 22050 22050 / 2400 = 9.19
Renegade's Fusillade Foxtrot 1350 19293 19293 / 1350 = 14.29
Renegade's Fusillade Analyzer 1350 26460 26460 / 1350 = 19.6
Renegade's Fusillade Bastion 1350 33075 33075 / 1350 = 24.5
Chamber of the Underdark Shadow Sidearms 600 2520 2520 / 600 = 4.2
Bloodsworn Battler's Slacks 700 4556 4556 / 700 = 6.5
Treasure Hunter's Jungle Raiments 700 5062 5062 / 700 = 7.23
Underdark Warrior's Headdress 800 7200 7200 / 800 = 9
Crucible Guardian's Blood Sight 900 10890 10890 / 900 = 12.1
Fusillade Duelist's Vestment 900 17015 17015 / 900 = 18.9
Claim Jumper's Hand Carbines 1000 28350 28350 / 1000 = 28.35

And with this, we also know what item we should buy with prestige. The one selling the PvP Leveling Gear, the category "[...] Imbuements Level 10-50" the one that costs 1000 prestige and rewards 2 gold 83 silver and 50 copper.

Last Currency For Now: Renown

Renown is probably the currency you have the most of. Anyways make sure to always have some renown left over for the experience and speed flask. Since experience is converted to silver and copper once you have reached your elder gems cap. Going from top to bottom we get:

Item Cost Sell Price Price per Currency
Satchel of the Reputable 500 1 1 / 500 = 0.00
Greater Set Focus - Minor 1200 8 8 / 1200 = 0.01
Refined Set Focus - Minor 1600 14 14 / 1600 = 0.01
High Set Focus - Minor 2000 22 22 / 2000 = 0.01
Worn Easy Chair 75 1 1 / 75 = 0.01
Exile Commander's Boots 17500 7031 7031 / 17500 = 0.40
Exile Commander's Legplates 22500 14062 14062 / 22500 = 0.62

So one renown isn't even worth 1 copper. Oh well, we can still make 0.62 copper for each renown.

I Can't Find These Items

That's possible. I've created this data on my main character which is a Spellslinger Exile. Lucky for you I told you or shown you what to do and you can calculate it yourself! Besides the prices are probably the same so you just have too look for the same sell and buy proportion.

28 December 2017

Misuse of Symbolism

I have something for you:


Image 1

First Impression

What's the first impression or the first thing you think about when seeing this? Think about it for a moment. Are there any other impressions you get from this?

I would assume most people would think of Nazism first. Of course, it's famous, the oh-so-famous swastika of the Nazi's. Unfortunately, the symbol was more or less stolen and changed to what it is now known for. Officially the symbol represented spiritual principles and looked more like this:
Image 2

But this is not the only symbol that has been mistreated by the national socialists. Check these out:

The SS Misuses a Rune:

Image 3

Image 4



Comparing the images these symbols don't seem similar at all.
Image 5

However, the rune Sowilo can also be written like in image 5 as well. Now, this looks almost exactly like the symbol the SS used. Sowilo is the rune of victory, of being successful. That might be the reason the SS used this rune.

Misunderstanding of the Pentagram

Image 6
The pentagram has been used for all kinds of rituals and magic, even alchemy. However, the pentagram has nothing to do with the devil as common belief lets us think. I often hear people associate it with Satanists and the devil which is technically not right nor wrong.

Satanists also use rituals that are deeply inspired by the older rituals that are used in ritualism and magic and yet both shouldn't be lumped together.

If you see a pentagram don't jump to conclusions to say someone is a satanist. I have a perfect example in this regard.
Image 7

Meet Aleister Crowley. Edward Alexander Crowley was an English occultist, ceremonial magician, poet, painter, novelist and mountaineer who lived from 1875 to 1947. His most famous quote and book of the same name: "Do what thou wilt" tells people to align with their true will. However many people misinterpreted and took that quote out of context. The new interpretation was "Do what you want" which was allocated to satanism. He didn't seem to mind according to sources though. Anyways if you're interested in him, then check him out.

Misunderstanding of the Hexagram

On we go with the next symbol. Similar to the pentagram the hexagram is used for all kinds of magic rituals and ritualism. It symbolizes the union of the female principle and the male principle as well as 6 planets on each corner instead of the 5 elements of the pentagram. The hexagram is often assigned to witchcraft and/or satanism as well. Another symbol that falls victim to the misunderstanding of symbolism and just like the pentagram the symbol itself has no fixed assignment. It all depends on who uses it for what. So you could say it's neutral. It has been used as the symbol to unify two equal triangles, to symbolize the planets and the energy in or between them, to represent the six elements of nature, as the star of David or as seal of Solomon. As you can see the usage is vast, just like the pentagram.

Conclusion

So what's my goal here? Simple. I want people to stop misjudge symbolism and symbols. I want people to stop having prejudices when they see those symbols. I want people to give others using certain symbols a benefit of a doubt. Just because someone uses the pentagram for anything or a ritual doesn't necessarily mean they're a satanist. Just because someone uses the swastika or the Sowilo rune doesn't mean they're racist. At the same time, the ban of the swastika used in Hinduism just because it looks similar to the swastika of the national socialists is the same problem. Of course, there are tons of symbols to use, but if at some point every single symbol gets ruined due to a group of people, what are you supposed to work within the end? All I'm saying is have an open mind, stay skeptical if you want but don't judge too early without knowing the whole story.

Sources

Image 1: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/85/SWASTIKA_%CE%A6_%28%CF%83%CF%87%CE%AD%CE%B4%CE%B9%CE%BF%29.jpg
Image 2: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/63/HinduSwastika.svg/1003px-HinduSwastika.svg.png
Image 3: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c2/Flag_of_the_Schutzstaffel.svg/2000px-Flag_of_the_Schutzstaffel.svg.png
Image 4: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/
commons/thumb/f/f3/Rune_letters_sample.svg/1280px-Rune_letters_sample.svg.png
Image 5: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c3/Sowilo.png
Image 6: https://cdn.pixabay.com/photo/2013/07/12/18/57/pagan-154085_960_720.png
Image 7: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/63/Aleister_Crowley_as_Osiris.png

27 December 2017

Stats in Games - Brainstorm

I heard that some games have these things that are called equipment, I think? And so apparently this equipment has some weird numbers and words on it.
Power, Precision, Critical Hit Chance, Attack Speed
 Really weird stuff.

Stats In Games

Okay, enough playing dumb. There are a bunch of games especially RPG or MMORPG and AMMORPG, which have equipment with stats on it. These stats increase your survivability, outgoing damage or your ability to heal others. I've played... a few games but kinda the right ones to get introduced to a handful of these. So I kinda want to list them all in this post and maybe add some of my own? Anyways here we go.

Brainstorm Time!

Power 
Assault Power, Intelligence, Strength, Dexterity, Might
This is the main attribute. It scales either the effectiveness of your assault abilities or the direct damage you do with your attacks.

Critical Hit Chance
Precision, Accuracy, Luck, Critical Chance
The concept is the same, though. This stat is basically a chance that your attacks deal more damage than in hitting enemies critically. This one also goes hand in hand with the next one.

Critical Hit Severity
Critical Hit Damage, Ferocity, Critical Damage
As I said, hand in hand with the previous one: It increases how much more damage you deal when your attacks hit critically.

Vitality
Health, Max Health, Stamina, Health Bonus
This one simply increases your health pool. The amount by how much your health is changed differs from game to game.

Armor
-
This stat is usually gained from only the equipment you have. It is either used directly or converted and added on another stat to later decrease the damage you would normally take.

Resistance
Toughness, Mitigation
This is the stat armor that may be added to. It decreases the enemies damage you would normally take.

Multi-Hit Chance
-
The result is the same as with critical hit chance and critical hit severity the idea behind it - not so much. The idea is the higher your multi-hit chance the more likely you are to hit your enemy with your attack another time but this time weaker. It also synergizes with critical hit chance. The weaker multi-hit can hit critically too.

Multi-Hit Severity
-
Goes hand in hand with a multi-hit chance. Usually, this is below 100% as the multi-hit is usually supposed to be weaker.

Vigor
-
In WildStar it increases your damage respective to your health. The more percent health you have the more effective vigor is. In Skyforge vigor increases your damage when you chase an enemy.

Tenacity
-
Compared to how vigor works in WildStar this one scales with the enemy's health instead. The less health the enemy has the more damage you deal.

Armor Pierce
Armor Ignore
It's kinda possible to read it out of the name: the higher the stat is the more armor or resistance your attacks ignore. So the decrease in your damage is lower.

Attack Speed
-
The stat that increases your... attack speed. Simply put: you attack faster the higher this stat is.

Condition Damage
-
Some games split direct damage and damage over time. These games may use an attribute such as condition damage which increases the damage over time.

Expertise
Condition Duration
Having damage over time and direct damage split? Why not increase the length of damage over time? That's what this stat does.

Concentration
Buff Duration, Boon Duration
Damage over Time isn't the only thing you can increase the duration of. This stat increases the duration of buffs or in Guild Wars 2 of boons to be specific.

Healing Power
Support Power
Sometimes the damage isn't the only thing. Let's go with an attribute that increases your out-going healing.

Intensity
-
Similar to vigor this stat increases your healing by a certain percentage. However, it increases the cost of those skills as well.

Mana
Mana Pool, Focus Pool, Focus
If your skill cost increases you should increase your currency as well. This stat increases the currency of your skills.

Strikethrough
-
A stat that increases your chance to hit the enemy.

Deflect Chance
Agility
The opposite, a stat that increases your chance to deflect or completely avoid an enemy attack. Strikethrough is subtracted from this value.

Glance Chance
-
This is the chance for an attack to deal less damage than usual.

Glance Mitigation
-
By how much is the glanced attack reduced? The glance mitigation value determines that.

Critical Mitigation
-
Critical hits really hurt. Luckily this stat reduces the damage you get from a critical attack.

Deflect Critical Hit Chance
-
Or give up on ever being critically hit again with deflect critical hit chance. It decreases the chance enemies have to critically hit you.

Energy Recovery
Mana Recovery, Focus Recovery, Mana Regeneration, Energy Regeneration
Your resource needs to come from somewhere. This stat will increase your regeneration of the resource. Usually per second.

Cooldown Reduction
-
Having problems with your skills being on cooldown all the time? This attribute reduces the time you have to wait for your skills to be ready again.

Lifesteal
Life siphon
Regardless of being a fan of necromancy or not. Lifesteal removes health from your enemies and adds an equal amount to your health.

Focus Cost Reduction
Mana Cost Reduction, Energy Cost Reduction
Sick of spending all your resources on one expensive skill? This attribute reduces the price you pay by a certain percentage.

Reflect Chance
-
This attribute is the chance you have to punish a foe for dealing damage to you, by reflecting said damage.

Reflect Damage
-
And this is the amount of damage that is reflected. Either as number or percentage.

Movement Speed
Speed, Swiftness
Feel like a slowpoke? This is your solution. This stat increases the speed at which you move through the world.

Regeneration
Life per Second
The resource isn't the only thing that can regenerate. Health can too. This attribute increases your health every second.

Life per Hit
-
Similar to life steal but not quite. Increasing this attribute increases the health you gain every time an attack of you hits the enemy.

Ranged Damage
-
This one increases your damage dealt if you're further away. In Skyforge it was 20 yards. However, you could make it a percentage like with vigor.

Adaption
-
If you like to be hit over and over again this might support your play style. This stat reduces incoming damage when you're hit multiple times.

Control Efficiency
CC Duration
Are you a fan of Crowd Control? this attribute increases the effectiveness of your CCs.

Control Suppression
-
The opposite of the previous one. This will decrease the effectiveness of CCs on you.

That's a bunch of stats I came across, not all but most of them and I guess that's enough already for today.

26 December 2017

Yesterday The World Came To Be

Imagine the world came to exist yesterday and all memories you or your friends or anyone else has just come to exist on the same day too. Alright. Now try to find arguments that disprove this theory and that can't be disproven themselves.

Any?

No Proof - No Disproof

You won't be able to argue against this idea. That's like arguing about aliens or god. You could say that it seems unbelievable, after all, you got all your memories, right? And they feel real, everything you remember seems real. The better you remember something the more real it seems, in the end, it's just memories. The thought that these might have come into existence the same time the world came into existence seems absurd and yet it could very much be possible. You have no proof to confirm this. Just like there is no hard evidence on the existence of god or aliens. At the same time, you can't rebut it either. There is no evidence to approve these from not existing. We have the same case without an example.

The Phenomenon's Name

This may be called Last Thursdayism, Omphalos Hypothesis or Five-minute hypothesis. In all of these the basic concept is the same:
  • happened some or a specific time ago
  • the world came into existence just like it is right now
  •  we came into existence with all the memories we have
The only thing that differs is the time-span or the story behind. 

Omphalos Hypothesis This hypothesis says god created the world several years ago the way it was back then for it to be able to function. If everything is supposed to stay in balance you have to create everything at the same time, right? That's the idea behind it.

Last Thursdayism According to it the world was created last Thursday the way we remember it to be on that day with all the memories of what happened before.

Five-minute hypothesis, in this case, we, the world and everything came to be just five minutes ago with all the memories of what happened before.

Regardless of what the parameters are it's always the same problem. If everything came into existence as it is and you have all these memories it's hard to disprove it.

Trying to Disprove

One attempt that was made, was of someone who had a note from before last Thursday. They said it can't be that they have a note with a date written on it from before last Thursday and remember what they wrote on it.
However, if the note came into existence on Thursday and you were given the memory of it being written by you before Thursday, the attempt already failed.

Conclusion

So what does this all tell us? Like the example of ghosts, god, aliens, demons or this hypothesis, some things can't be proven nor disproven. In these cases, we should stay skeptical. Though in my opinion, it's never a bad idea to give anything a benefit of a doubt. You'll never know and being open to changing your way of thinking is better than being wrong and trying to hide that fact.

By the way, it would be cool to hear your attempts on trying to prove this hypothesis wrong, such a great topic for discussion.

~GreenyNeko, out!

25 December 2017

Guild Wars 2: Time Consumption of WvW Pips

Every week on Friday, 18:00 UTC a new World vs World match starts. With every new match, the rewards reset. This means we can get through all those reward chests again.

What's It Worth?

Each chest rewards WvW Skirmish Claim Tickets, Skirmish Chest(s), Memory(/ies) of Battle and Reward Track Progress(es). The last chest of each tier rewards extra of the earlier mentioned rewards but Mist-Warped Packet and Bundles too. Summing up all these rewards we have:
  • 365 WvW Skirmish Claim Tickets
  • 35 Skirmish Chests
  • 76 Memories of Battle
  • 142 Reward Track Progresses
  • 11 Mist-Warped Packet
  • 3 Mist-Warped Bundles
  • 4 Mystic Coins
I have some data on what the Magic-Warped Packet and Bundles are worth but that's another story so let's just say this is all awesome and we want it. Especially since you can use the WvW Skirmish Claim Tickets for ascended and legendary gear.

What Do I Need To Do?

It may sound weird but you just have to play World vs World. The question, though, is how much. We need to get 1450 pips to get all the rewards of this week. Afterward, the rewards still repeat except for the WvW Skirmish Claim Tickets. So let's calculate how long we need to get them. Thus we need 1450 pips. Next question is:

How To Get Pips?

In World vs World, there's a participation system. Each time you do anything that rewards World Experience or if you impair some building that can be destroyed, like a wall or a gate you gain participation. For a certain amount of time this participation keeps at the amount you have. If you don't do anything until the timer runs out it starts to dissipate until you get some participation again. Now once your participation fills up completely you increase your participation tier. The maximum tier is six and it starts with zero. Once we reach tier three we start to get pips every five minutes. Side note: respective to your tier you also get a different amount of reward track.

How Many Pips?

The amount of pips differs depending on some factors. The minimum you can get is 3 and the maximum you can get is 19. The factors are:
  • War Score Placement Your servers rank in the current skirmish.
  • WvW Rank Your rank in World vs World
  • Commander If you're a commander with at least five people in your squad.
  • Commitment Having gotten all wooden chests last week
  • Outnumbered Being on a map with the Outnumbered buff.
If your server is the best of the three in the current skirmish you get five pips, as the second server you get four pips and if you're playing on the last of the three you get three pips. Depending on your WvW rank you can get between zero and seven pips. As a commander with a squad, you get one additional pip. Having completed the wood division last week gives you another single pip and playing on a map that gives the outnumbered buff gives five pips.

Cal-cu-la-tions- Calculations Now Begin

Okay, so in the worst case, we get 3 pips every five minutes. We need 1450 pips. So we need pips rewarded 1450 / 3 = 483.33 times. Multiplying this by the minutes it takes to get pips gives us the number of minutes it will take: 483.33 * 5 = 2416.65. Last but not least change this to hours: 2416.65 / 60 = 40.28. So, for someone to start fresh, they would have to put in 40.28 hours in the worst case. Now let's see the best case. We get five pips every five minutes. Let's cut the calculation down to one formula:

1450 / 5 * 5 / 60 = 24.16

Alright, so it will take between 40.28 and 24.16 hours. That's still a lot, kinda like full time or a part-time job. Luckily we can get the extra pip by only getting the wooden chests. So let's check out how hard the wooden chests are to get. We need only 100 pips for this. So for someone starting that is:

100 / 3 * 5 / 60 = 2.78

100 / 5 * 5 / 60 = 1.67

Only 2.78 to 1.67 hours. That's doable!

Alright, we got our extra pip now the times look like this:

1450 / 4 * 5 / 60 = 30.21

1450 / 6 * 5 / 60 = 20.14

So 20.14 to 30.21 hours. That's quite a lot already for just one pip.

Sometimes you may or may not be playing on an Outnumbered map. Let's see how long it takes us here in the best case:

1450 / 11 * 5 / 60 = 10.98

Okay, so it would be safe to assume it would take us 10.98 to 30.21 hours with the extra pip.

Of course, I could go through every case here but you can do it just as well it's as simple as this:
1450 / pips * 5 / 60
One thing I want to calculate now is. How long does it take for someone who gets the maximum amount of pips worst and best case?

So let's see we have someone with maximum WvW rank and the commitment pip. That's 11 pips minimum and 18 pips maximum if not commanding.

1450 / 11 * 5 / 60 = 10.98

1450 / 18 * 5 / 60 = 6.71

Now that's a huge difference. Only 6.71 to 10.98 hours needed. Alright, last but not least full pips all 19 here we go:

1450 / 19 * 5 / 60 = 6.36

So this takes 6.36 hours.

Daily Average

Before I finish let's go quickly over the daily average the respective players need to play. Of course, there's more time on weekends and less time during the week. Regardless I'm interested in what we get offered. So to calculate this we simply divide the result in hours through the seven days.
  • With 3 pips: 40.28 / 7 = 5.75 hours every day
  • With 4 pips: 30.21 / 7 = 4.32 hours each day
  • With 5 pips: 24.16 / 7 = 3.45 hours per day
  • With 6 pips: 20.14 / 7 = 2.88 hours a day
  • With 11 pips: 10.98 / 7 = 1.57 hours daily
  • With 18 pips: 6.71 / 7 = 0.95 hours or 0.95 * 60 = 57 minutes a day
  • With 19 pips: 6.36 / 7 = 0.91 hours or 54.6 minutes each day

24 December 2017

Christmas - A Ritual

Merry Christmas everyone.
Yesterday's post was quite a heavy topic, should've decided on something else I guess. Well, today's gonna be nicer. It's about Christmas!

Christmas Traditions

Cookies have been baked, soon the feast's preparation is finished. The family is happy, everyone's excited about the presents. The Christmas tree is standing in the parlor, decorated as it's supposed to be.
Playing board games, talking, hanging around with each other.

Christmas - A Ritual

a religious or solemn ceremony consisting of a series of actions performed according to a prescribed order.
~ Google Dictionary
Let's see. A religious ceremony?
In some cultures we got the Christkind who brings the gifts, in other cultures I've read Thor, Santa Claus or Father Christmas do the job. Even the idea to celebrate the day Jesus Christ was born is a very religious influence.

Next, we have a ceremony consisting of a series of actions performed according to a prescribed order.
This can be argued about as it may differ from family to family, but I think it's saved to say that this does count to almost all families. Has your Christmas celebration ever changed? Mine hasn't.

Alright, so Christmas fits the definition of a ritual. That's nothing special though. Even brushing your teeth every day can be a ritual.

The procedure of Our Christmas

So how do I celebrate Christmas? A few days prior we prepare the food. At Christmas we talk and hang out eat lunch together, everyone does their things then until we eat cakes and cookies and drink coffee and cacao. Then we return to what we do until dinner. At dinner we eat together we have planned to eat sausages today. Then we're playing board games together until midnight. At midnight it's time to open the presents. Then we continue to hang out play some games until half-past or even 1 o'clock. Sometimes even later. The next day we eat a rabbit at lunch. More hanging out, more talking, more games.

 How To Use Christmas For Ritual

Rituals can be used to achieve something. A change. The goal is to convince our unconsciousness. So here is a ritual idea you could add to your yearly routine.

Gift yourself a wish.
This may take a bit more preparation but the goal is if you wish for something you could make some kind of symbol or pack something that has to do with your wish being successful. Give it to someone who celebrated Christmas with you and forget about it. At Christmas, they'll give it back to you. If you remember the wish to imagine it coming true with this present. After Christmas, you should store it somewhere so your consciousness doesn't remember it.

This is not the only one. Can you think of your own? Just use the knowledge you have, the knowledge you get from history or knowledge of something most or almost all people believe in and try to convince yourself that your wish comes true using the Christmas procedure for your own yearly ritual.

Just.. don't start hanging around hexagrams and pentagrams or make sacrifices. I think that would leave the wrong idea if people don't know the details about it. ^^'

Merry Christmas everyone!

23 December 2017

The Guild Wars 2 Achievement Leaderboard Issue

Achievement points. Guild Wars 2 is all about it. At least if you care for achievements and account bonuses and other stuff you get for your achievement points. That's not everything. There's a whole different layer on this. If something has a leaderboard it's kinda like a tournament. It doesn't have to be Player vs Player.

Meaning of Leaderboards

Leaderboards It's a game element. People who have read into Gamification know a little about these. If you sort game elements by the intrinsic needs, leaderboards would be part of Competence. Competence is a category that includes elements, that give people the feeling of having done something, the feeling of having mastered a challenge, the feeling of having gotten better, the feeling of improvement. And how do leaderboards achieve this?

Leaderboards - How They Work

What is a leaderboard? Actually, it's just a list of names - the players or participants - sorted by their rating. Ascending in numbers or places. This means if a person is on the top of the first place, they're logically better than everyone else. If someone would be at the last place they're the worst in the category. If a person is worse than another they may feel bad and give up on this category. However, some people take this as inspiration and motivation to keep on working to get better and climb the leaderboard.

ArenaNet Did It Good

If someone is nearly last it is extremely demotivational. Especially if all people can see and know that said person is near to last. This problem can be solved and ArenaNet did it right. Limiting only the top 1000 to be publicly viewable and showing the people themselves who are not in the top 1000 that they're better than x% of everyone is a good way to keep people motivated. This way you can eliminate the negatives without affecting the positives too much. No one can say who is last and everyone can say they're better than a group of people.

Where ArenaNet Failed

Now, this is not a direct problem in their leaderboard system or a severe mistake that cannot be fixed but still, it's something that should be addressed at some point. Now to have a meaningful leaderboard it should allow people to be able to climb up to the first place. Anything else wouldn't be fair and exactly here lies the problem with the Achievement Point Leaderboard of Guild Wars 2. Overall those 5 years or more Guild Wars 2 has had some special events that gave achievement points. Wintersday, Halloween, New Year, some unique events like the Zephyr Sanctum or the Living World Season 1. All these special events gave achievement points that are no longer available in the game. Same with the abandoned achievements. They still award achievement points to those who have completed them but they were removed from the game. I am missing around 900-1000 achievement points that are now unattainable. Others will require a lot more. This handicap makes it hard to compete with other players.

Well Some Repeat, Right?

Yes, some special events repeat and you get more and more achievement points. The problem here, however, is that the people who've been playing longer might also still play these events. As long those people do that it's a fight for playing and a fight for who started first instead of a fight of competence.

My Solution

I don't like addressing problems without a solution and my first solution got already discarded. The problem in the old one was that the removed achievements that took more work weren't treated fairly.

This new solution does not change the achievement points on people at all. The idea is to change the leaderboard. All achievements that are removed, retired or do not reappear are listed in history except for reoccurring achievements like from the Super Adventure Box for example. The API knows this. If you could flag or move reoccurring achievements into their own category you could calculate how many attainable achievements the player has completed. Then you can sort the players by this descending and get your leaderboard that is fair for everyone and unbiased as well.

If people still want their "I was first". Diablo III has a system where it saves the date when the achievements were done. I guess you could argue to bring in something like this but that's not something I strive for.

The idea is to reward someone who is just as hard-working or works much harder than someone who started earlier but works just as much as they need to keep their spot.

22 December 2017

Damage Calculation In WildStar

What is theorycrafting without on-paper damage calculation? :p
I have no idea, that's why I ask you, L.O.L... Anyways let's jump right in.

The Base Damage

The people who followed the update posts of Carbine Studios over all those years know how the damage on skills is - or might be - calculated and what role Assault Power plays here.

According to balancing patches a percentage of assault power is changed and a value which increases with the level is changed. If we say these are the only values and when experimenting with the last patch values comparing it with the numbers on the tool-tips we can assume the following formula for assault abilities:

baseDamage = assaultPower * skillAssaultPowerMod + levelStatRate * yourLevel

Higher skill tiers increase the skillAssaultPowerMod and the levelStatRate

Now, this is a little bit old but Mortar Strike on Base Tier the inner AoE (Area of Effect) hits with 29.77 per level and 94.02% of Assault Power.

So let's assume we have 17765 Assault Power Rating and of course we're level 50.
17765 Assault Power Rating equals 17765 / 4 = 4441.25 Assault Power.
So for our base damage calculation:

baseDamage = 4441.25 * 0.9402 + 29.77 * 50

That's about 5664.16 damage.

Critical Hit Chance & Severity

Critical hit chance is, as the name says, the chance to hit harder. Severity is how hard you hit. By default, the severity is 150% (So a 50% damage increase compared to normal hits). The way I figured out how to calculate these both is by trial and error, but I'm gonna explain it a little bit.

No critical hit chance, but a lot of severity. 0% chance vs 300% severity.
If you have no critical hit chance you won't ever hit harder, so you'll have no damage increase here.

All hits are critical, but no severity. 100% chance vs 100% severity.
Even if each of your attacks hits critically if your critical hits don't hit harder your damage doesn't increase.

Okay, if all of our attacks are critical and severity doubles our damage. 100% chance vs 200% severity.
What happens? Our damage is doubled. As simple as it is.

Now if we critically hit every second time and still double the damage on a critical hit. 50% chance vs 200% severity.
Surprise. On average we get a 50% damage increase. So with half the critical hit chance, we deal half the damage increase from severity on average.

It doesn't take much to make the last step here but if you haven't got a feeling for math what happens here is:
criticalHitChance * criticalhitSeverity
 The damage increase occurs critical hit chance of the time and also we do 100% of our damage always. Keeping this in mind we get:
(1 + criticalHitChance * (criticalHitSeverity - 1))
So applying critical hit chance and severity to our damage calculation:

damage = baseDamage * (1 + (criticalHitChance * (criticalHitSeverity - 1))

Example: 
We have a 48% critical hit chance, 268% critical hit severity and the same damage as before.

damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1))= ~10231.74

Multi-Hit Chance & Severity

WildStar has a stat called multi-hit chance and multi-hit severity. If your multi-hit chance triggers the severity of your previous damage is applied to the enemy a second time. This works exactly like critical hit chance and severity but our multi-hit severity is much lower.

So we have:  
multiHitChance * multiHitSeverity
However, compared to critical hit chance if multi-hit does not occur we don't have multi-hit damage. If the multi-hit chance is zero we don't do any additional damage.
So we keep this and add it to our formula like this:

damage = baseDamage * (1 + criticalHitChance * (criticalHitSeverity - 1)) + baseDamage * (multiHitChance * multiHitSeverity)

With our previous stats of 48% critical hit chance, 268% critical hit severity, 31% multi-hit chance, 48% multi-hit severity and our previous damage we now have:

damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) = 11074.57

HOLD IT - Synergy

Yep, Multi-Hit and Critical Hit synergizes. How? A multi-hit can be a critical hit too and a critical hit can multi-hit too. However the multi-hit takes the base damage not the critical damage. So we need to apply our critical hit chance and critical hit severity to our multi-hit:

dmg = baseDmg * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) + baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1))
dmg stands for damage; baseDmg for baseDamage; CHC for critical hit chance; CHS for critical hit severity; MHC for multi-hit chance; MHS for multi-hit severity;

So our actual damage is:

damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) = 11754.22

Next stat: Vigor

Vigor increases our damage respective to our health. If we have 100% health the whole damage increase of vigor is applied. If we have 50% of our health only 50% is applied:
1 + yourHealth * vigor
To calculate the average damage you can just use your average health.

Adding to the calculation:

dmg = baseDmg * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + (yourHP * vigor)) + baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + (yourHP * vigor))
yourHP stands for your health points;

If we assume to have 18.2% vigor and 90% health on average we get:

damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + (0.9 * 0.182)) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + (0.9 * 0.182)) = 13679.56

Strikethrough

Next up is strikethrough. So enemies have a deflect chance. There are tables on how much deflect chance the enemies have. You need the same amount of strikethrough as the enemy has deflect. Luckily there are raid buffs that decrease this value additionally. So how does strikethrough calculate?

If an enemy has 12.48% deflect chance and we have 12.48% strikethrough we'll hit 100% of the time. Alternatively we'll miss 12.48% - 12.48% = 0%. So our hit chance is:

100% - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)

However, keep in mind this formula only counts if strikethrough is not higher than enemy deflect. Even worse strikethrough is supposed to convert to armor pierce however according to information it is bugged and strikethrough instead decreases your critical hit chance if over capped (going over a cap, as in the highest meaningful value).

Well assuming we do not overcap strikethrough:

dmg = baseDmg * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough))
+ baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough))

Doing our damage calculation with 12.48% enemy deflect chance and 10.91% strikethrough results in:

damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) = 13464.79

Armor and Resistances

Not done yet. Unfortunately. Armor is converted to resistance. My Spellslinger is currently running around with 39.39% resistance. Bosses have between  47.12% and 50.05% resistance. This means that we only do about 50% of our damage on those bosses. They resist about 50% of our damage.

Don't forget the more resist the enemy has the less damage we do. That means we need the opposite. So instead of enemyResist we use (1 - enemyResist).

So we add this number to our damage calculation:

dmg = baseDmg * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist) + baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist)

If we take the resistance of the enemy of 47.12% into account we get this result:

damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712) = 7120.18

That's a drastic change but don't worry.

Your Savior: Armor Pierce

Luckily we have armor pierce in this game. Or unlucky, since our calculation gets even longer and worse. Well, how does armor pierce work?
After our raid buffs decrease the resistance of the boss additive, our armor pierce further decreases the resistance multiplicative.

So if the boss resistance is 47.12% and we decrease it by 10.5% to 36.62%. Now we have 9% armor pierce which further decreases it's resistance to 36.62% * (100% - 9%) = 36.62% * 91% = 33.32%.

So putting armor pierce into our calculation as well:

dmg = baseDmg * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP)) + baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP))
ARP stands for armor pierce ;)

So doing our calculation:

damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712 * (1 - 0.09)) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712 * (1 - 0.09)) = 7691.20

Are We Done Yet?

Nope, unfortunately not. There is one more stat. Which one? Thanks to the primal matrix we now have tenacity. Tenacity deals more damage the less health the enemy has. So if we have 10.5% tenacity we deal 5.25% more damage when the enemy is at 50% and 0% more damage if the boss is at 100%.

dmg = baseDmg * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP)) * (1 + tenacity * (1 - enemyHP)) + baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP)) * (1 + tenacity * (1 - enemyHP))

How much damage do we do then? You could assume 50% health on average so you could calculate with 5.25%. Alternatively, you can give a range. Let's do that.

If the enemy has 100% health:
Nothing changes damage is still 7691.20 as calculated earlier.

Enemy has 0% health
damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712 * (1 - 0.09)) * (1 + 0.105 * (1 - 0)) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712 * (1 - 0.09)) * (1 + (0.105 * (1 - 0))) = 8498.77

So we have a range between 7691.20 and 8498.77 damage.

Enemy has 50% health (average).
damage = 5664.16 * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712 * (1 - 0.09)) * (1 + (0.105 * (1 - 0.5))) + 5664.16 * (0.31 * 0.48) * (1 + 0.48 * (2.68 - 1)) * (1 + 0.9 * 0.182) * (1 - (0.1248 - 0.1091)) * (1 - 0.4712 * (1 - 0.09)) * (1 + (0.105 * (1 - 0.5))) = 8094.99

Done Finally?

Yes. Finally done. :)
I was simplifying this calculation prior to the update of the post but noticed that we lose accuracy and some other problems are raised. Treating the initial hit and multi-hit separately and adding them is a better solution. The problems that are raised are:


  • The initial critical hit and the multi-hit have the same critical chance but they might not both critical hit. It is safer to separate these.
  • It is unlikely for your health to change in this short amount of time but the initial hit changes the enemy's health thus the multi-hit damage changes respectively.
  • Very unlikely but the buff uptime may run out before the multi-hit hits resulting in different resistances.
So there we have it:

baseDmg= assaultPower * skillAssaultPowerMod + levelStatRate * yourLevel

initialDamage = baseDmg * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP)) * (1 + tenacity * (1 - enemyHP))

multiHitDamage = baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP)) * (1 + tenacity * (1 - enemyHP))

totalDmg = initialDamage + multiHitDamage

Full formula:


totalDamage = (AP * skillAPMod + lvlStatRate * yourLvl) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP)) * (1 + tenacity * (1 - enemyHP)) + baseDmg * (MHC * MHS) * (1 + CHC * (CHS - 1)) * (1 + yourHP * vigor) * (1 - (enemyDeflect - strikethrough)) * (1 - enemyResist * (1 - ARP)) * (1 + tenacity * (1 - enemyHP))
AP stands for Assault Power; skillAPMod for skillAssaultPowerModifier; lvlStatRate stands for level stat rate; yourLvl stands for your Level;

21 December 2017

All About Yule

Whelp, I've never been too good at summarizing stuff and I'll probably summarize it too much but hey. I need to do some tribute to participate my way in today's yule.

What Is Yule?

I know you could just look it up on Wikipedia but here you go: Yule is an old traditional Celtic celebration matching the winter solstice. It is said to have somewhere between November and February through nowadays witches and magicians celebrate it on the 21st December, hence the topic of the post. The goal was to celebrate the end of the dark season and welcome the lighter time of the year, as well as the rebirth of the sun. It was most likely replaced with Christmas by the Christian church even though the topic and celebration differ strongly.

How To Celebrate?

On my search for information, I found different ways to celebrate it. Some historians connected Yule with the wild hunt. There is information on a lot of boozing also. And some information on gathering huge logs and light them, surround the huge fire, dance, sing, eat and drink.

And Nowadays?

Most magic-oriented people celebrate Yule and the winter solstice by performing rituals. 

The most simple ritual would be to kindle candles and other fires throughout the night until sunrise.
The goal here is to celebrate the end of the dark time and welcoming the light and the lighter part of the year. The sunrise represents the result of the successful ritual.

A more traditional way would be to prepare the celebration by extinguishing all light sources. Then once the celebration begins lit all candles, torches, fireplaces available. Once all the light sources are lit the feast will be started with a toast.

Seems Oddly Familiar

Jul took the saying "the festival of warmth and love" more literal, I guess. Contrary to Christmas or other similar celebrations, depending on the people who celebrate it the focus on rituals is higher or lower. At the same time, the meaning of the rebirth of the sun can be used for other rituals with a similar concept as well. For once, as a person who currently does not enjoy the ice-cold temperature, I don't mind a festival to celebrate it to get warmer.

'Tis The Season To Be Kindling Fa la la la la...

Imagining a festivity which consists of simply lighting things on fire sounds a bit weird if you take away the ritual meaning and everything. Additionally, if I would've known that certain rituals done on Yule take until sunrise I would've prepared earlier to make sure not to stand up like 6:15am. Oh well. I've informed myself to read a lot, way too much about this and tried my best to summarize it for you. So I guess, I've done my part? Oh and before I forget it. Maybe it's a good idea to celebrate the rebirth of the sun. I mean... we should be thankful for it still existing and not going imploding on us yet or something.

Happy Yule to you all!

Burn the halls with boughs of holly
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
'Tis the season to be kindling
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la 
Don we now gaze the fire
Fa-la-la, la-la-la, la-la-la.
Troll the ancient Yule-tide carol
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la.
See the blazing Yule before us.
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
Strike the harp and join the chorus.
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
Follow me in merry measure.
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
While I tell of Yule-tide treasure.
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la

20 December 2017

Is Living Forever That Great?

Something I really hate about real life is the correlation between time and money. Either you have time or you have money. Having both is hard especially finding the balance. However, time wouldn't be such a big problem is we could

Live Forever.

A dream many people have - I could imagine - and many people had. Frankenstein and Linus Pauling for example. But what would living forever mean? What would it be like? There are many interpretations of how it would work but most boil down to you no longer aging. To know how this would work we need to know what happens when we're

Getting Older.

To simplify what's happening. Our cells reproduce over and over every second. The old cells that died get replaced that way. We lose these cells all the time if they're stuck on our body and cling to each other we know this most commonly as dandruff. Anyways this reproduction or copying of our cells transfers the data in the DNA of the cell onto an mRNA (messenger Ribonucleic acid). Basically a string of information on how the DNA is built. This mRNA is then translated into the new cell to recreate the DNA of the old cell. If the new cell is a copy of the old one, where's the problem?  The problem is that this procedure isn't perfect. There's a mistake every now and then and these cells with mistakes in the DNA are copied too and at some point, we have completely broken cells. A common example is the loss of information in the DNA, as the hair color. We have a mechanism that tries to correct these errors that occur but it can't fix everything and trying to fix these mutations isn't always successful. So if it weren't for those errors, we would probably be immortal.

Great! Get this fixed! Get me signed up! I'm ready!

Hold On

This may sound great and all, unfortunately, there are a few problems that arise when we live forever. I know the idea of immortality is great but we need to think it through what it would mean. We can't just say we're immortal and do what we like. We might lose our immortality that way. At least if we're talking about living forever. 

Well first things first, perfect copying of our DNA means there will not be any mutations anymore. You could say, that's great! No more cancer! However, at the same time, this means no evolution anymore. We would be stuck with the body of ours at its current state. No improvements. No evolution. I guess you could replace parts of your body with technology, that might still work.

Second of all, environmental awareness has already been spread but we're just starting. If you want to be able to keep your infinite life, you need to learn to live in balance with nature.
This may sound like something an esoteric may tell you but it makes sense here. The environment and world try to stay in balance. Simply put: if we destroy this balance the world may be destroyed meaning your life ends.

Going hand in hand with the previous statement. If multiple people life forever we need to find a solution to overpopulation.
Overpopulation is already a problem. The planet we live on has only a limited amount of space. Without utterly destroying the planet how are we supposed to all life? The last overpopulation was solved by the black death. One way would be to deny oneself to have children the other way would be to bring back sacrifices. I'm not saying this is a good or fair option but it would be an option. Whatever the case is this problem needs a solution and reducing offspring would be one way to do it.

On the Other Hand

If waiving on those things I mentioned is no problem for you then be happy to enjoy your infinite life. I wouldn't mind trading those aspects for adding an in- to my finite life. No more fearing to not have enough time. You can learn everything and all you want because you have infinite time to do so. You can enjoy what you're doing and work on things in your spare time the next day after work because it doesn't matter how long it takes as time is no longer the problem. Work 5 years earn money and then lie back a few years and start working again once the money goes out. No problem.

Conclusion

I've mentioned the 3 biggest disadvantages or problems. How heavy or strong these are for you, I don't know. It differs from person to person. As I already mentioned it wouldn't be a problem for me and the advantages are much greater in my own opinion. Ain't no rest for the wicked [...] ain't nothing in this world for free. Now, of course, technically there are other times of living forever like true immortality (not being to able to die at all), near-immortality (extreme self healing properties), rebirth (being reborn afterlife) but I wanted to go into one that is comprehensible in the sense of "that would scientifically work".

19 December 2017

Leveling: Tutorial or Part of the Game?

Ah yes, you start a new MMORPG and the first thing you'll have to do is level your ass up to the end game, what a great way to start off your game. No wonder some games scare people away. Sometimes the leveling goes too fast, sometimes it goes too slow, but why?

Leveling As Tutorial

Some might argue leveling is a tutorial. The problem with this statement is that leveling takes a lot of time in many games. Tutorials usually take a few seconds up to some minutes in other games and now you want to tell me these tutorials take days and up to or more than 40 hours? What am I supposed to learn? Well, I guess there's a lot in some MMORPGs. Let's check out what you can learn in WildStar.

WildStar Tutorial

WildStar has a tutorial but that hasn't gotten much to do with leveling. So let's just look at what you unlock when leveling.

There are 50 levels. The first two levels do not unlock anything with level 3 you get the looking for group-tool, Player vs Player, the skill tree basically and two new zones. Level 4 and 5 each unlock one new skill and another skill slot. Level 6 unlocks three skills of your alternative role (e.g. healer), your first instance and the first PvP instance, as well as two new maps. Level 7 gives you the 6th skill slot and two new abilities. Level 8 unlocks salvaging and another skill. Level 9 gives you 2 new abilities and a 7th skill slot. Level 10 unlocks crafting, two skills, the last skill slot and the first point for the skill tree and the first point for upgrading your skills. From here on out every level unlocks another point each. Level 12 gives you the ability to create guilds, the next instance, and two more skills. With level 14 we get two more skills, housing and two new areas including our main city. Level 15 gives us the ability to craft upgrades for our gear, the ability to upgrade our skills further and a new PvP and PvE instance. The next level unlocks just a new skill, followed by unlocking of another instance. Two more skills with level 18. With level 20 our skills can be upgraded even further, we get two more skills and access to a new PvE instance. New area and two more skills are unlocked with level 22. Two more skills with 24. 25 allow us to upgrade our skills further and we get two more PvE instances, followed by another instance at level 26. Now it takes a while until we unlock more upgrade possibilities for our gear as well as raising our skills further, two PvE instances, one PvP instance and a new map with level 30. 31: a new PvE instance. Now it takes until 35 to unlock another PvE instance and the ability to upgrade our skills further and a new map. With level 40 we get skilled riding, the ability to further improve our skills, three PvE instances and a new map. Level 45 gives us the ability to push our skills to the maximum and a new map. Another map with level 46. Two new maps with level 49. And we did it. Level 50 with PvP arenas, more PvE instances, raids,  improved riding, special quests (contracts) and some more maps.

Alright, that's a bunch. But as you might have seen some levels do not unlock anything but points for the skill tree. Nothing wrong with this, but for a tutorial hardly meaningful. However, there is a reason leveling may take this long. Let's look at the possibilities you have.

Build Possibilities

You start off with three skills and three skill slots. Only one possibility for your build. With level 4 and 5 we get each another slot and another skill. We have five skills and five skill slots now. With level 6 we unlock three skills. Now we have eight skills but only five skill slots. The number of combinations is now:

C(n,r) = C(8,5) = 8! / (5! * (8 - 5)!) = 56.

So with level 6 we already have 56 combinations. With level 7 we get a 6th slot and two new skills. We now have 10 skills and 6 skill slots.

C(n,r) = C(10,6) = 10! / (6! * (10 - 6)!) = 210

210 possibilities now. Of course, not every possible build is also useful or makes sense. Anyways the next change we have is at level 8 with another skill:

C(n,r) = C(11,6) = 11! / (6! * (11 -  6)!) = 462

To speed things up here's a list of levels and combinations:
  • Level 10: C(15,8) = 6435
  • Level 20: C(24,8) = 735471
  • Level 30: C(28,8) = 3108105
  • All abilities: C(32,8) = 10518300
This is only taking into account the skill bar. The skill tree and the ability points that can be spent on upgrading our skills allow for many more combinations. Especially since they go hand in hand with the combinations above.

Guild Wars 2 Tutorial

Like in WildStar the actual tutorial only consists of a small instance. The leveling here goes up to 80.

The level rewards can be found here: Guild Wars 2 Wiki: Level Rewards

In Guild Wars 2 it's even more complicated than in WildStar. We have a lot more combinations here. For example, you can wear a two-hand weapon or a one-hand weapon in the main hand and off-hand. Each weapon gives you class and weapon-specific skills. There are already several different combinations here and that's only the start. There is even more with the utility skills, heal skill and elite skills you get and you can combine one weapon set with another weapon set.

Well Sounds Like a Lot

And it is a lot and learning to use it all takes some time, but it might not take as long as the developers may have anticipated. In some cases like Guild Wars 2, the developers want people to test different builds and skills creating a higher leveling time but also having the time not to level too fast enjoying the area and beauty of the world.

Guild Wars 1 Tutorial

Anyone who has played Guild Wars 1 knows: Once you have reached the maximum level you're done with the tutorial. Now the real game starts. This tutorial only took a few minutes to a few hours. Nothing compared to the leveling nowadays. This is a fine example of how leveling as a tutorial works

Path of Exile Leveling

Path of Exile is an extreme opposite of this. Here the leveling doesn't stop even in the end game. At level 90 the continued leveling is extremely tedious and time-consuming. Especially since you lose the experience of your current level when dying. So it often happens that people don't reach the maximum level of 100 in a season.

Is Leveling a Tutorial or Part of the Game?

Going through all these examples I'd say it can definitely be used as a tutorial and also as a part of the game. Whether you like leveling or not is something everyone needs to know for themselves. There are ups and downs to this system. Also, it helps out to prolong unlocks to not overwhelm the player. Especially in MMORPGs which nowadays should and partly do focus on offering people all kinds of different content from achievement hunt to costumes to difficult content and even a little grind here and there. So with growing content and possibilities for the players to come these need to be introduced slowly. However, developers should keep in mind that the leveling doesn't go too slow nor too fast. Finding the right speed for the players is hard though.

Another way to use leveling would be like in real life. You never stop learning new things, you never stop leveling in real life. So you could make a leveling system in similar games. Keep in mind that this doesn't work well with people who seek to "complete" everything though. They might not like something infinite.

18 December 2017

Skill Value and Skill Priority

A lot of theorycrafting is brought to life usually by the wish of wanting to improve one's performance in the raids or whatever content. Many theorycrafter strive to become better in DPS (Damage Per Second), healing or tanking as these are the most common disciplines one will find.

Value and Priority of Skills

I'm going to explain this topic without using any hard examples from the games I play (Wildstar and Guild Wars 2 currently). You can apply this to any game though and it's just simple math that no one really cares much about probably.

Someone Else Did It

Most of the time if you play a game and you want to play something better than that somehow more or less random via gut feel constructed build of yours. So you start to search for "builds" on google. Slap your class on that search and you'll most likely end up with a good build, some website that contains builds or the meta build that is highly appraised, everyone plays and either loves or hates.

Evaluate Skills

There are several ways to evaluate skills in comparison to a game. One way to compare skills is by comparing the total damage they do. The problem here, however, is that we look at the burst, high damage in a low amount of time.

For example, we have a skill A that deals 1207 damage and a cooldown of 5 seconds and
 a skill B that deals 612 damage and a cooldown of 2 seconds.

Now in the heat of the moment, of course, our skill A deals 1207 damage and skill B only 612 damage. That means skill A has a higher burst. This would be useful if an encounter requires players to throw out as much damage as possible as fast as possible.

However, if we want to go with the highest DPS, this would not be it. Of course, the burst damage of skill A is higher but skill B can be activated more often. 2.5 times more often. So in this case, until we deal with our 1207 damage of skill A again we deal with the damage of skill B 2.5 times as often. That sounds tedious to compare this way and there is another way. When we have or calculate the total damage a skill does we can divide this number by the cooldown. If a skill has a cast time or activation time this time is added on the cooldown. We want the time between the first appliance of damage and the second appliance of damage. Let's compare our skills this way:

Skill A deals 1207 damage with a cooldown of 5 seconds. That's 1207 / 5s = 241 damage per second.
Skill B deals 612 damage with a cooldown of 2 seconds. That's 612 / 2s = 306 damage per second.

Look at that. Now Skill B is better.

What About Damage over Time?

It makes no difference. Just sum up the total damage. Let's say we have a skill C that deals 320 damage and does a DoT (Damage over Time), for example bleeding dealing 52 every second for 8 seconds with a cooldown of 3 seconds.

If we sum the damage up we get 8 * 52 + 320 = 736 total damage. Now we can divide it by its cooldown and we get 736 / 3s = ~245.33 damage per second.

As you can see it works just as usual.

What Do I Need This For?

When a new patch that changed a lot or brought in balancing gets released it takes a short while for guilds and people to do the theorycrafting and create the builds. Sometimes these people don't have the time to do all the numbers on paper or maybe they're not doing the math but just try it out on a "target dummy" or "target golem". Whatever the case may be, you can calculate the value of a skill this way and set some priorities for your skills when playing. Skills with higher damage per second have a higher priority to be used.

17 December 2017

Whats There If No One Looks?

We know if we look at something it's there. It is hard to argue that there's not a computer screen, mobile phone or different device to read this page in front of you right now. If you look at football, it's there! Definitely! If you look away and someone looks at it, they can tell you it's there.

If No One Looks At It

Is it there? You're not looking at it. Now you could say, I've seen it there it must be there. Alternatively, you could ask someone else if they see it, but if they don't look at it they can only do the same you did: Say they've seen it there so it must be there. Is that enough? Can we say just because we've seen something at a certain place it's definitely exactly at that position?

Empirical Research

This is how our brain works most of the time. Knowledge by experience. We see the football, look away, check it at some point again, it's still there. Thus we conclude it must've always been there like it has been the first time we saw it. At some point when we see the ball is no longer at the same spot, something must have changed. We figure out someone moved it. We see how it was moved. Now we think if it's not at the same spot it has been moved. So if we look at the football and check on it later and nothing has changed we assume the scene hasn't been tampered with. We would never expect that when we do not look at the ball something might be going on with the ball and the surrounding area. If we're away from our home we would never imagine that something happens to our room at home when we're not there. Especially if we come home and it hasn't changed at all.

Observing Changes Variables

Through our years in quantum physics, we figured out that every particle has a probability to be at a position. When we observe the particle it is always at a certain position respective to that probability. If we don't observe it we can't say for sure where it's at. If this counts for every particle of a ball. Additionally, these particles interact with each other they collide and all. So due to the interactions of each of those particles, we can say for sure that they're forming a ball. Now the ball can be at any position that matches the formula of all the probabilities of the particles. Since the ball also interacts with the air surrounding it and the ground it may lie on we can continue to eradicate all possibilities that won't match this position. In the end, we can say that as long we observe anything we can conclude that the world around us is as we experience it.

Does A Blind Man Observe?

Observing something isn't the only limiting factor here. Just standing around makes your feet interact with the ground.

Okay, let's go with a thought experience I've created once to give an example of the division through zero. If you have a cake and you divide it through 2 people, you get 2 pieces - a half each - for each person. If you have a cake and you divide it through 1 person you get the whole cake for that person. If we have a cake and divide it through no one, there's no one there, there's no one who can divide the cake. You don't even have someone who knows the cake is there. Does the cake even exist? No one can tell you.

If We Don't Observe

Going with this, if we're not observing anything and not looking at something we're disconnected from the world. We're now independent of what happens around us, the probabilities can do their thing freely and the position of everything around us is uncertain until we observe it again. You could call this a state of mind of uncertainty.

Magic Plays a Role Too

Now at this point, if we say magic exists and what magic does is change the probabilities of reality. This means if we think about the ball being where we saw it. This thought should change the probabilities for the ball to be where we saw it. That also means if we convince our unconsciousness to believe that we remember the ball to be somewhere else it should be somewhere else if it's a possibility given by the probability function of the particles of the ball.

Okay, but.. if one person thinks the ball is on the desk and another thinks it's on the ground where is it then?

Interference of Several Thoughts

Well, what happens if two people think of a different position of the ball? I wouldn't know the details but I would assume the more people, the more whose unconsciousness is convinced the most the higher the chance for the ball to be at the position these people believe it is.

And that's all there is. At least as long you or someone else looks at it. :P


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I'm a junior game developer and software developer and I created this blog to share my ideas, thoughts and whatever I'm working on or doing.