Combat is a very complex mechanic in Mortal Online. Compared to regular MMORPG's there are a lot more factors deciding the outcome of each battle. Combat is first person only so you have to maintain a situational awareness at all times.
Combat Stance In Combat Stance (default X) you are preparing yourself for incoming blows as well as for dishing them out yourself. You will automatically draw your pre-selected weapons (if any, unarmed fighting is also possible). In Combat Stance you move much slower by default, and sprinting costs more stamina.
Depending on what weapon you wield, there are three different types of attacks:
- 1. Swing - Used for slashing/sweeping/cutting.
- 2. Thrust - Used to precisely aim thrusts and prods.
- 3. Ranged - Used for shooting bows.
An attack consists of two "phases": charge and release.
By holding the left mouse button (LMB) you charge your attack (for a minimum of 1/2 sec but for as long as you want). As long as you charge you are open for attacks, you may block but it will cancel your charge. When you release LMB, the attack comes instantly, followed by a "recovery" that leaves you vulnerable as you cannot strike or block/parry during that time either. Charging the weapon for a few seconds affects how much damage you do with your swing.
The two phases are also used when simply clicking the LMB, although they are handled as one seamless move: The attack will be charged and then immediately released when the charge is completed (minimum 1/2 sec).
Running and attacking will result in a "power strike" that is different depending on the weapon you wield, but it drains a lot of stamina.
The first thing you'll learn in MO's combat is that timing is crucial, and simply spamming the LMB won't help you in any way. The slight time it takes to charge an attack (whether you hold or click the LMB) makes the combat feel a bit non-instantaneous at first (compared to average shooters where bullets are fired directly when clicking), but opens up for much more tactical and "realistic" combat, as well as manual blocking.
Active blocking/parrying is a very difficult feature to handle in a MMO due to server response time and network traffic. We've had to make several compromises (like attack-speed) but are very proud to have a working manual blocking-system.
Blocking is done by holding the right mouse button. It takes approximately 1/4 of a second to enter blocking-state (raising your shield or weapon). Likewise, it takes about the same time to exit blocking when you release RMB. It's pretty fast, but not instant. Holding RMB slowly drains stamina, and so does every blow you manage to block.
Blocking will absorb damage (but the shield or weapon used to block will sustain damage). When blocking, there are three different outcomes:
- If you are struck from behind, blocking will not help at all.
- If you are struck from the front or side, blocking will absorb only a small amount of damage.
- If you manage to block the blow with the actual shield- or weapon-mesh, you've made a Perfect Block. Perfect Block drains less stamina, reduces the damage done to your shield/weapon, and gives you a chance to follow up the block with a special counter-attack if you time it really well.
When holding RMB, an alternate attack can be triggered by LMB. (If you are using a shield for example, this will trigger a shield-bash.)
One-handed weapons may be combined with a shield or another one-handed weapon (or for instance torches). If a shield is equipped, it will automatically be used for blocking by RMB instead of the weapon. When dual-wielding two weapons, tapping a direction and then LMB will charge the corresponding weapon.
Shooting is of course aim-based. Unfortunately it's too early to tell if we will be able to have simulated trajectories and arcs, but if it's in any way doable we will.
Armor and Hitboxes Edit
We are excited to announce that we’ve managed to have as much as 10 individual hitboxes(!) per character in the Alpha. This means very accurate hit-detection, and also that the armor of each body part is used when calculating damage. Additional effects for striking different parts may be added later (such as greater chance for knockback when hit on legs or feet, critical hits on head, chance of being disarmed when hit on hands etc.), but so far only damage is in. On a side note, equipping and un-equipping armor pieces take time, and although it isn’t as slow as in real life it’s definitely not recommended to do during combat.
The majority of spells that deals with real-time PvP have been classified as “Ecumenical Spells”. By reducing the number of spells (to about 20), we’ve managed to work out a system where strategy, tactics, actions and reactions define the outcome in a mage-duel. There are very few, if any, “buffs/debuffs”. There are very few types of damage or resistances in PvP (no fire, water, earth, wind, holy, unholy etc.). In short, you have to have good coordination and you must really try to read your opponent to be successful. In many ways, it’s comparable to old UO.
(The Battle Magic is separated from the other Magic Schools that deals with semi- or non-direct PvP magic, like summons, enchantments, music etc. Also, in PvE creatures will deal different types of damage and there will be different kinds of resistances and spells to affect them. But those systems will not interfere with the PvP.) We are currently evaluating two types of spell casting:
- The first system is based on targeting, where you switch between the targets in your Target List. Some spells are simply auto-aiming, some requires that you face the opponent, and some requires that you actually aim and hit them.
- The second system is based on aiming-only, like a FPS. The first system means that once you’ve targeted your opponents, you have to use coordination (and sometimes aiming) to be successful, but in a way it’s less “fps-interactive”.
The problem with the second system is that aiming-only gets very twitch-based and more like a shooter. Also, the number of Combat Spells will probably have to be even more reduced - compare it to a FPS-game where you have to keep track of 20+ weapons and how to counter them while moving around.
This will definitely be tested and worked on during this phase.
Mounted Combat Edit
Mounted combat works in exactly the same way as described above, although the control scheme is a little bit different. You can use different stances, attack, block, shoot, dual-wield and cast spells etc. The higher the velocity of your mount, the more damage is added to your strikes as well as an increased chance to knock opponents over. Hitboxes are separated, meaning you can hit either the mount or the rider.
Fatalities, Mercy and Death Edit
If the last blow that hits you and makes you reach 0 HP isn’t extremely heavy (which would instead result in a spectacular bloodbath), you will enter a semi-unconscious state where you are only able to speak. Your opponent may hit you once more and then you die - perhaps s/he even decides to end it in a really theatrical way - or s/he may decide to spare or bargain with your life. If you are left alone, you will eventually regain a couple of HP but be much weakened.
See also future plans Edit
Hit box benefits such as blur effects from head, slow down from limbs, disarm from hands. Weapon group benefits, axes better against shields, sledgehammers against armor, rapiers against leather. Skills such as counter attack and other skills in first person view.