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IDProjectCategoryView StatusDate SubmittedLast Update
0002712Dwarf FortressDwarf Mode -- Combatpublic2010-07-15 16:302020-09-25 19:25
Assigned To 
PlatformmsOSwindows 7OS Version64 bit
Product Version0.31.10 
Target VersionFixed in Version 
Summary0002712: weapons, especially whips, cut through steel armor like butter
Descriptiondwarves clad in the best available steel armor get mutilated by all types of weapon types, quality and material.

- a singe crossbowgoblin is able to take out a full squad
- even copper whips bruise internal organs on first strike
etc. etc.
TagsProbable Quick Fix
Attached Files

- Relationships
related to 0000033resolvedToady One Bronze colossus, skeletal creatures, fleshballs, and others are impossible to kill 

-  Notes
oliver (reporter)
2010-07-15 17:17
edited on: 2010-07-15 17:17

Not seeing this in my arena tests. Whips do seem to bruise organs a lot, but they don't do much damage beyond that. One steelclad axedwarf wins essentially 100% of the time vs one crossbowgoblin with iron bolts, even if the goblin has max skills and the axedwarf doesn't.

I think we either need more specific information on the problems you are seeing and how to reproduce them, or a save.

smjjames (reporter)
2010-07-15 17:25

Theres a discussion about it on the forums, actually its more about weapons but the conversation went to armor as well. [^]
furiousfish (reporter)
2010-07-26 06:41
edited on: 2010-07-26 06:47

I'm seeing whips as being overpowered too. After getting a steel-armoured squad butchered by copper whips in dwarf mode, I tested it in the arena: I put a group of goblins with copper whips and no armour against a group with iron swords and full steel armour. The lashers won with no injuries. Looking at the combat log shows the whips go right through the armour as if it wasn't there, and chip or fracture bone on every hit. Hitting the head causes instant death by pushing the skull through the brain. Sometimes the log doesn't even say anything about "goes through the steel breastplate" or whatever, so maybe the armour really isn't being counted.
I suspect this may be something to do with whips having a contact area of 1.

Rafal99 (reporter)
2010-07-26 09:29

Happened to me in a save-scummed game in fort mode. 6 goblins with iron whips killed 8 dwarves in full exceptional iron armor, and only got one loss. All dwarven deaths except one were through "skull into brain" hits, even when my dwarves had exceptional irom helms and 2x iron cap each.
furiousfish (reporter)
2010-07-26 10:56

Tested against adamantine armour with similar results.
I edited the raws to give whips a contact area of 100 and tested again, the results were much more reasonable:
copper whips were completely unable to penetrate steel armour
steel whips got through steel armour to a small extent, taking a long time to kill an armoured but unarmed dwarf
steel whips smashed through bronze armour with ease
furiousfish (reporter)
2010-07-26 11:28

Bolts seem to be the same, they go through armour like it's nothing. Increasing their contact area also stops that, but seems to make them less lethal (probably because they're so light). Not sure what the best setting for them is.
Rask (reporter)
2010-07-27 07:07

Blowdarts seem to be stopped by armour, and are much smaller. Maybe reduce the size of bolts?
SeanTucker (reporter)
2010-08-05 16:12

Somehow I get the feeling Toady's a Castlevania fan. LOL
JimboOmega (reporter)
2010-08-06 21:13

Count me in as having this problem. Routed a whole bunch of gobbos, their last squad was a bunch of trolls mired in traps followed by a bunch of lashers.

Thinking whips not an ideal weapon, and clad in exceptional or masterwork steel from head to toe, I sent my guys out.

When the dust settled most of the squad was dead. One lasher, who had lost a leg (!), was hobbling around and took out two dwarves before he was subdued. How? Like a previous poster noted, it often seems to ignore the armor entirely - in the log it penetrates through the cloak, for instance, even though the dwarf is wearing both a breastplate and a steel shirt.

That one cutting hit is enough; my guys were mostly adequate or similarly unskilled, and that hit disables them. Goblin often hobbled (hopped?) away afer one hit, leaving a field strewn with injured dwarves. Most of his fellows got killed (masterwork steel swords, and crossbows, yay), but he took down several, and the combat logs were just depressing. They'd miss, he'd take them out with one blow

His leg was off, geez!
Hieronymous Alloy (reporter)
2010-09-13 08:58

My guess is that what's happening is that the game is treating whips as if they're solid, and the full mass of the weapon is therefore impacting at supersonic speed in the small contact area. In reality, only a small fraction of the whip's mass is impacting on the target area.
naxus (reporter)
2010-10-30 14:31

ohyeah! i just lost a whole frikken fortress to lasher gobbos :D they slaughtered my ironclad army like.. like... nekkid babies!
I have this funny feeling that whips act like maces?
slackratchet (reporter)
2010-11-03 07:54

I am also seeing this issue. I was able to handily defeat a number of ambushes and other annoyances without injury with a well trained and equipped military. A small group of Lashers wiped them out in next to no time flat.
Hieronymous Alloy (reporter)
2011-06-14 14:35
edited on: 2011-06-17 05:39

Added the "probable quick fix" tag because testing on the forums (see [^]) indicates this problem could be fixed by upping whip's contact area.

Suggested raw values given here: [^]

ArmokGoB (reporter)
2014-07-10 09:32

I'd like to see a quick fix on this soon. It's one of those things in adventurer mode that causes premature !!FUN!!
Dwarfu (manager)
2014-07-10 09:40

Current version bugs are being addressed right now. This, and other bugs marked as Probable Quick Fix, have already been sent to Toady for review on the old bug fixing session.
ArmokGoB (reporter)
2014-07-10 10:17

Ah, wonderful.
beetlenaut (reporter)
2020-09-25 19:25

After having my entire steel-equipped military decimated by a single, naked goblin with a whip, I did some testing. Increasing the contact area helped a little, and decreasing the size helped a lot. I ended up with 10 for both.

A successful strike bruises a body part about 60% of time, fractures a bone about 40% of the time, and pulps a body part <1% of the time. Armor doesn't make a noticeable difference to the damage, but of course it deflects many of the strikes. Unarmored civilians take so many strikes so quickly that they don't hold out long. This seems about right to me.

To use these values, go to raw/objects/item_weapon.txt. Find ITEM_WEAPON_WHIP and change these two lines:

- Issue History
Date Modified Username Field Change
2010-07-15 16:30 schlappi New Issue
2010-07-15 17:17 oliver Note Added: 0010382
2010-07-15 17:17 oliver Note Edited: 0010382 View Revisions
2010-07-15 17:25 smjjames Note Added: 0010383
2010-07-26 06:41 furiousfish Note Added: 0011074
2010-07-26 06:47 furiousfish Note Edited: 0011074 View Revisions
2010-07-26 08:38 Footkerchief Summary weapons cut through steel armor like butter => weapons, especially whips, cut through steel armor like butter
2010-07-26 09:29 Rafal99 Note Added: 0011081
2010-07-26 10:56 furiousfish Note Added: 0011088
2010-07-26 11:28 furiousfish Note Added: 0011089
2010-07-27 07:07 Rask Note Added: 0011156
2010-08-05 16:12 SeanTucker Note Added: 0011536
2010-08-06 21:09 JimboOmega Issue Monitored: JimboOmega
2010-08-06 21:13 JimboOmega Note Added: 0011574
2010-09-11 17:38 Hieronymous Alloy Issue Monitored: Hieronymous Alloy
2010-09-13 08:31 Cakeonslaught Issue Monitored: Cakeonslaught
2010-09-13 08:58 Hieronymous Alloy Note Added: 0012616
2010-10-30 14:31 naxus Note Added: 0013561
2010-11-03 07:54 slackratchet Note Added: 0013600
2011-06-14 14:34 Hieronymous Alloy Tag Attached: Probable Quick Fix
2011-06-14 14:35 Hieronymous Alloy Note Added: 0017994
2011-06-17 05:39 Hieronymous Alloy Note Edited: 0017994 View Revisions
2012-02-20 19:11 Footkerchief Relationship added related to 0000033
2012-02-20 19:15 Footkerchief Tag Detached: Probable Quick Fix
2012-02-20 19:15 Footkerchief Tag Attached: Probable Quick Fix
2012-02-26 11:46 Buglist Issue Monitored: Buglist
2012-06-25 08:05 Telarin Issue Monitored: Telarin
2013-12-07 04:34 Thundercraft Issue Monitored: Thundercraft
2014-01-17 10:33 Kirig Stonebeard Issue Monitored: Kirig Stonebeard
2014-07-10 09:32 ArmokGoB Note Added: 0025549
2014-07-10 09:40 Dwarfu Note Added: 0025550
2014-07-10 10:17 ArmokGoB Note Added: 0025554
2020-09-25 19:25 beetlenaut Note Added: 0040745
2020-10-07 23:57 beetlenaut Issue Monitored: beetlenaut

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