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View Full Version : What on earth is going on with my to-hit?



Cardtrick
05-22-2010, 11:55 PM
I'm a pretty new player. I leveled a character up to level 8 a few months back, then left the game (just didn't have time to play) . . . and now I'm back and at level 6 with my current (second) character. However, I have a lot of experience with other D20-based CRPGs, so I understand most of the rules/spells/builds pretty well.

What's puzzling me, though, is my to-hit. It is constantly jumping around. I see this both in my inventory screen, and in the combat logs (from the textbox). I'm not talking about small increases/decreases -- it varies between 26 and 12. This is often the difference between hitting on anything but a natural 1 and missing more than half the time.

I know one factor is movement -- my TH drops by 4 when I'm moving (which is fine, since I don't have spring attack). But as for the rest of it . . . I just have no idea. I'm not seeing any debilitating effects in the upper right of my screen. I'm using the same weapon, the same equipment, and the same spells. And yet . . . my TH is different almost every time I look at it.

Are there known things that could cause this? Or, even better -- is there a way for me to see what is currently affecting my to-hit score? (Like how you can hover your mouse over an ability score on the character sheet to get a breakdown.)

EDIT:
To-hits of 13, 15, 25, and 26 seem to be the most common when I look.

EDIT 2:
I've just taken some time to actually calculate what I should have fora to-hit, if I understand this correctly.

My character is a level 6 Bard, giving me a BAB of +4. I have a base STR of 16 along with an Ogre Strength belt + 2 for a strength modifier of +4, which should give me a total of 8 to-hit so far. I'm wearing the Goggles of Insight from Korthos for an additional +1, for a total of 9. I'm using a +4 Greataxe, and I have extended Master's Touch constantly running (for the martial weapons proficiency). That should give me +13 total, which is nice, because it's one of the numbers I can remember seeing more than once.

I also virtually always have my bard song going, which gives me +2 to-hit (with the first to-hit enhancement taken, since that's all that's available at level 6). This should give me a total of +15, which again is a number I've seen repeatedly.

So the question is then why I'm also seeing numbers as high as 25 or 26. If 25 makes sense, I can explain 26 -- I have 3 bracers of aid from Korthos that I use before tough fights for extra hit points and one more +1 to-hit. 25 is then 10 more than I would expect to have . . . and yet I seem to see it about as often as I see 15. Is there any condition on my character, or the environment, that might cause me to gain +10 sometimes?

When I do have the a to-hit of 25, it's not just short-lived. I can close my inventory and re-open it, and it will still show +25 for the primary hand bonus. I can also switch weapons and then switch back, and I'm still showing at +25 after doing so.

I am confused.

dominp
05-22-2010, 11:57 PM
movement is a huge factor but so is flanking.
if you are behind or to the side of an enemy that will give you a bonus.

Ethias
05-22-2010, 11:59 PM
I believe (note, not sure here!) that the point you are in your attack sequence will also adjust what you see in your inventory tab (and thus in the combat log).

http://ddowiki.com/page/Attack_sequence

Cardtrick
05-23-2010, 12:24 AM
movement is a huge factor but so is flanking.
if you are behind or to the side of an enemy that will give you a bonus.

My understanding is that movement is a -4 and flanking is a +2. Is that not right? In any case, though, I see this same kind of variation when I look at the bonus listed in my inventory, even when there are no enemies around, so I don't think that flanking could be the culprit.


I believe (note, not sure here!) that the point you are in your attack sequence will also adjust what you see in your inventory tab (and thus in the combat log).

http://ddowiki.com/page/Attack_sequence

Ah, that's interesting! Particularly since the "4th animation" listed gives a +10 over the base, which would explain my fluctuations between 15 and 25.

Where I'm still confused, though, is why I often see 25 or 26 in my inventory screen, not just the combat logs. Do you think it's possible that the inventory screen gets "stuck" -- and shows whatever the last to-hit bonus was the last time I actually attacked something? So if the last attack I made was a 4th animation one, it would be showing +25 (+26 with Aid), but if the last attack was a first animation one I would instead see +15 . . .

That might explain everything. Does anyone know of a good explanation of the animations and their bonuses? That wiki page has a nice table of bonuses, but I can't find anything on it to explain how to get a particular animation. Do they just cycle through the 4 animations? Or do they do that, but only if you hold down the attack button? Or do you have to time your attacks in a certain way to get those bonuses?

At low levels, a +10 to-hit is ridiculously valuable . . . I'd like to know more about the animations if that's what's causing it.

Beld
05-23-2010, 12:27 AM
The inventory screen does indeed show the last to-hit bonus from the last animation...therefore, yours could be showing the 4th animation when you see the large to-hit bonus.

Easiest way to figure your standing bonus is what you have already done by calculating all your bonuses, this is your 'base' and will fluctuate up and down according to what else you are doing.

Cardtrick
05-23-2010, 01:03 AM
Thanks, everyone! This makes a lot of sense. I've been watching my attack rolls, and they do indeed cycle through in a sequence like that wiki link. You guys really cleared up my confusion.

sirgog
05-23-2010, 03:13 AM
Another source of +1 is the spell Haste. You can't cast it until next level, but if you party with people that can, there's a +1 that everyone forgets (as Haste's main bonus is +15% attack speed and +40% move speed, and in almost all situations those bonuses outclass the +1 To-Hit).