A 2H axe is not a baseball bat (Animation video test)

How do you think the swing animation for 2h axes should look like?


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xdj1nn

Knight
WBWF&S
wTTXM.png

I know that this thread should go in the suggestions section, however I have decided to place it here because it affects both SP and MP. Also, I open a poll and here it will have more visibility and therefore more people will participate in it.

To the point.

The 2h axes swing animations from the first time I saw them, gave me the impression that it was not an axe but a baseball bat that was being wielded. In my opinion the current animations for this type of weapon converge towards a grip more suitable for a 2h sword and it should not be so; but rather adopt the style of grip of a polearm. Also the position of the weapon should be adjusted so that the end of the handle rests inside the hand.


Here you have a video test:


I open the debate area and a poll to quantify the reactions to this issue.

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I've never grown the patience to analyse details from Bannerlord, but that comparison is spot on!!! :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: Baseball player meets Medieval setting


From my own experience with axe (2H too) I have to say that is is not possible to generalize the grip that easily. If I want to be fast like when be able to deflect opposite strike I would ofc hold it with my stronger arm (right) in the middle of a handle. When about using the axe for strike I would still hold the middle to raise it but then to get maximum force and to brace impact I would lower my grip of (right hand) middle of handle to the end of it next to my left hand. I do not know whether that would be possible to put this transition to animation but if not then at least one for defensive (more to middle of handle) and one for offensive (more at the and of handle) action could be done.
Well, first rule of martial arts is always to protect yourself, and never lose your weapon (when using weapons), so doing the "hands close together" thing would probably get you killed in a real combat situation against trained people. Under formation, probably they could pull it off, but alone it'd be incredibly suicidal. Basic BJJ techniques could allow me to disarm you in a movement like that without me needing any weapons what-so-ever, once you commit the swing in a motion like that, someone could simply tap the back of your axe and it would either fly off your hands, or it would get stuck into something. It's way more likely that they used spread grip, only slightly moving the hands through the shaft, but never getting them close, and the fighting probably looked much more like Bo Staff than a "wood-chopping" contest. (I'm talking bio-mechanics and basic concepts for any martial artist, **** the manuscripts. Though I see usefulness into committing suicidal attacks under quite rare and strict circumstances, so it doesn't mean it's "forbidden", just that it was probably really really really rare)
 
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Terco_Viejo

Spanish Gifquisition
Grandmaster Knight
I've never grown the patience to analyse details from Bannerlord, but that comparison is spot on!!! :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: Baseball player meets Medieval setting

Well, first rule of martial arts is always to protect yourself, and never lose your weapon (when using weapons), so doing the "hands close together" thing would probably get you killed in a real combat situation against trained people. Under formation, probably they could pull it off, but alone it'd be incredibly suicidal. Basic BJJ techniques could allow me to disarm you in a movement like that without me needing any weapons what-so-ever, once you commit the swing in a motion like that, someone could simply tap the back of your axe and it would either fly off your hands, or it would get stuck into something. It's way more likely that they used spread grip, only slightly moving the hands through the shaft, but never getting them close, and the fighting probably looked much more like Bo Staff than a "wood-chopping" contest. (I'm talking bio-mechanics and basic concepts for any martial artist, **** the manuscripts. Though I see usefulness into committing suicidal attacks under quite rare and strict circumstances, so it doesn't mean it's "forbidden", just that it was probably really really really rare)

I absolutely agree with that explanation.

I take this opportunity to put at all your disposal to all of you another short video test where it is shown in slowmo two different swings of two weapons that are within the same typology. The 2h axe is default, however the billhook is slightly shortened after a slight adjustment in the parameters to resemble the dimensions of the axe and thus get an equal test.


Do you see the hitting and recovery of the 2h axe (TwoHandedAxe category)? It is practically the swing effect that have the 2h swords, giving that effect of "striking with a bat". On the other hand with the billhook (TwoHandedPolearm category) the hitting and recovery is similar to the effect that this type of weapon plays.

Personally, I would leave the hits with "bat effect" for 2h axes with lengths below 60cm within a plausible practicality and for those with greater length (60cm onwards) a wide grip with polearm style swings.
 

xdj1nn

Knight
WBWF&S
I absolutely agree with that explanation.

I take this opportunity to put at all your disposal to all of you another short video test where it is shown in slowmo two different swings of two weapons that are within the same typology. The 2h axe is default, however the billhook is slightly shortened after a slight adjustment in the parameters to resemble the dimensions of the axe and thus get an equal test.


Do you see the hitting and recovery of the 2h axe (TwoHandedAxe category)? It is practically the swing effect that have the 2h swords, giving that effect of "striking with a bat". On the other hand with the billhook (TwoHandedPolearm category) the hitting and recovery is similar to the effect that this type of weapon plays.

Personally, I would leave the hits with "bat effect" for 2h axes with lengths below 60cm within a plausible practicality and for those with greater length (60cm onwards) a wide grip with polearm style swings.
seems quite reasonable to me (your suggestion)
 
Apparently devs tend to not mess with animations from a visual standpoint and just add parameters to circumvent a structural problem, they could have fixed the animation itself at least in other aspects (arcs of swings - The problem still exists and their solution created other problems)
If you want to fix something you got to go trough all the issues that cause it and not just tweaking values and ignoring the main problem.

(the "here" link is the quote below this one)
Hey!

So with today's patch we decreased the damage dealt by attacks very early and very late quite drastically. We did this with decreasing the damage curve (see here) This will mean that damage bounces are more likely to happen at early and late points of all swings in the game.

Why don’t we push the start points to a later point / end points to an earlier point?
This would lead to animation bounces (animation did not reach its point where its starts dealing damage) instead of damage bounces (damage is below the damage threshold). So if you would rush someone with full speed, for example hit them from your horse, you would expect to do quite a bit of damage. But with animation bounces you would simply bounce at this point, while with damage bounces you wouldn't..
So generally speaking it's better for the flow of the game to have more damage bounces than animation bounces. However this doesn't mean that all swing animations have a perfect damage area yet. The showcases in the thread (which are great btw) only show a small portion of all swing animations in the game, some of their damage aereas might be too big and we will have to look at them individually. The fix we did in the patch was more broad.
Thank you for the feedback. For the sake of discussing it/ being more transparent, I'll try to explain how the system works and what we changed with the last patch.

So basically we have an attack animation, lets say its 1 second long. On top of that we have something called damage area, which depending on the animation can have a different length and starting point. Lets say the damage area lasts from 0.25s -> 0.75s.

That means the 1s long animation starts dealing damage at 0.25s and stops at 0.75s. If you hit someone before 0.25s, or after 0.75s you will bounce/ swing through. We call that an "Animation Bounce".

Now the damage area is 0.5s long (from 0.25->0.75). In that time frame we can set 4 variables.
1: At what % the damage the damage area will start at (100% is what the weapon would deal with a perfect hit)
2: At what time it will start dealing "Perfect Damage" (100% damage)
3: At what time it will stop dealing "Perfect Damage" (100% damage)
4: At what % of the damage the damage area will end

Try it here: https://www.desmos.com/calculator/93k30wkuqn

In contrary to the "Animation Bounce" explained above, we also have "Damage Bounces". They occur when you are hitting someone in the Damage Area, but you don't deal enough damage for whatever reason (your opponent has high armor, there is negative speed bonus....).
This is why in the example (link above) you can see that we don't start at 0% but rather at 35% of the damage. If we would start players damage at 0% those bounces would happen more frequently and actually make the damage area smaller.

What we did in the last update was to start the damage area at a slightly higher damage percentage and made the perfect hit timeframe longer.

As you can imagine, it's really hard to find a good balance with that, so your feedback is very much welcome!
About "Damage Bounces":
Yes damage bounces happen more frequently than animation bounces and that is almost always related to high armor values on your opponent. We lowered the armor for most troops with the last patch (for some very significantly) to tackle that but I might have been not enough, or we need to buff the cut damage type.

About the different types of "Damage Areas":
So they are set uniquely for every animation. So a over head swing of a spear and a 1h weapon will have different damage areas. (Meaning different duration, start, end points)
But we only have 3 different value sets (for the damage curve), one for swings, one for thrusts and one for overhead swings. In theory that means players can learn(mostly subconsciously) the damage areas of weapon types and attacks directions, but can expect their dealt damage to perform the same with those attack directions.
So one way to make damages more consistent is to adjust the damage curves to be less distinctive, with the trade off of making attack directions perform quite similar and give less incentive to learn them for players which want to be better.

About what parts of your weapon deal damage:
There is a lot of factors we take into account when determining where your weapon deals the most damage. To get it out of the way, we basically don't know where the blade of your weapon is exactly. What we know is how long the weapon is above your hand, where the centre of mass is and the type of the weapon. Those factors impact where your weapon is the most effective depending on the different weapon types.

For example with the menavlion (swingable polearm) while swinging you deal less damage the closer you get to your hand. (Happens most notably for polearms and axes)

Just to point that out, don't worry, this doesn't mean that weapons with smaller blades will perform the same as weapons with bigger blades, because their COM is quite different.
It is meant to help exactly the case which was described above, that it's really hard to hit exactly with your blade and can be very frustrating if you just bounce 90% of the time when swinging a 2h axe for example. But it still rewards you for good hits with ruffly your blade location, without us having to know the exact blade position all the time which can be really performance heavy.
 
I've never grown the patience to analyse details from Bannerlord, but that comparison is spot on!!! :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: Baseball player meets Medieval setting



Well, first rule of martial arts is always to protect yourself, and never lose your weapon (when using weapons), so doing the "hands close together" thing would probably get you killed in a real combat situation against trained people. Under formation, probably they could pull it off, but alone it'd be incredibly suicidal. Basic BJJ techniques could allow me to disarm you in a movement like that without me needing any weapons what-so-ever, once you commit the swing in a motion like that, someone could simply tap the back of your axe and it would either fly off your hands, or it would get stuck into something. It's way more likely that they used spread grip, only slightly moving the hands through the shaft, but never getting them close, and the fighting probably looked much more like Bo Staff than a "wood-chopping" contest. (I'm talking bio-mechanics and basic concepts for any martial artist, **** the manuscripts. Though I see usefulness into committing suicidal attacks under quite rare and strict circumstances, so it doesn't mean it's "forbidden", just that it was probably really really really rare)
I agree with that but I do not see I wrote something wrong for shock troops were used to deliver dmg to already engaged enemy formation, kind of foot cavalry tactics. So it was not about dueling ofc. That is why I mentioned offensive and defensive stance. If you had Great axe and enemy before you who fights your comrades exposing their flank or back to you I doubt you would not use such sit for maximum impact:smile: Byzantines though used Varangians even for headlong chargé on many occasions not just for flanking so enemy could prepare for them but I guess their usually better equipment and moral lowered enemy efficiency to brace their chargé. If enemy did not brake (like Sicilian Normans) then they (Varangians) could take even heavy casualties (especially if confronted with crossbows) what we can read from Byzantine-Sicilian (Normans) fights for example.
 

Shun

Squire
WB
I do feel like the proposed animation looks like the strike has more weight behind it.

What I miss (mind that I am not sure if the BL engine even supports this) is for different animations for different kinds of strikes. In the Battle of Nations video linked on page 1, there are quite a few kinds of strikes used; some short, "jab like" strikes, some more weighty strikes, often used when the filmer intervenes in an already ongoing fight, etc. I would really like for these differences to be implemented - and then the "weighty, heavy axe strike animation" has a good place in the game.
 

Terco_Viejo

Spanish Gifquisition
Grandmaster Knight
I do feel like the proposed animation looks like the strike has more weight behind it.

What I miss (mind that I am not sure if the BL engine even supports this) is for different animations for different kinds of strikes. In the Battle of Nations video linked on page 1, there are quite a few kinds of strikes used; some short, "jab like" strikes, some more weighty strikes, often used when the filmer intervenes in an already ongoing fight, etc. I would really like for these differences to be implemented - and then the "weighty, heavy axe strike animation" has a good place in the game.

It is more about the animations. These movements should be integrated from scratch into the animation pool. The engine can deal with new animations without major problems.
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Speaking about usage and referring to the topic at hand, maybe the solution is a simple definition of the weapon usage in the parameters. Take a look at this test:


This particular axe is the model sturgia_2haxe_2_t5 (aka Northern Decorated Two Handed Axe) and has a crafting_template="TwoHandedAxe" (this parameter contains the "baseball bat swing effect" animation).This axe is then built with two components available for crafting; the blade and the handle.


These two components are included in the crafting_template file as "TwoHandedAxe". Well, I thought why don't we adapt these crafting materials to behave like a polearm? Said and done; I have included them in the TwoHandedPolearm list and the effect is the one achieved.

Perhaps there is a much more direct way to achieve the results than I advocate here; however this procedure could be a cheap shortcut to not having to deal directly with the animations.

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This has always really bugged me, the wide grip animations look much better.

I have just realized by checking the "old" threads that we already talked about this in February in your thread; hopefully we will see a solution mate :wink: .
 
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xdj1nn

Knight
WBWF&S
I agree with that but I do not see I wrote something wrong for shock troops were used to deliver dmg to already engaged enemy formation, kind of foot cavalry tactics. So it was not about dueling ofc. That is why I mentioned offensive and defensive stance. If you had Great axe and enemy before you who fights your comrades exposing their flank or back to you I doubt you would not use such sit for maximum impact:smile: Byzantines though used Varangians even for headlong chargé on many occasions not just for flanking so enemy could prepare for them but I guess their usually better equipment and moral lowered enemy efficiency to brace their chargé. If enemy did not brake (like Sicilian Normans) then they (Varangians) could take even heavy casualties (especially if confronted with crossbows) what we can read from Byzantine-Sicilian (Normans) fights for example.
if you run a heavy axe through someone's shoulder or back with maximum force, it's going to get stuck.
 

Terco_Viejo

Spanish Gifquisition
Grandmaster Knight
I think I have found another method, imho this time more practical and efficient than the first one (fiddling with crafting parts). In this test I have modified in the item_usage_sets.xml file the parts containing in the item_usage_set id="twohanded_widegrip_axe" and item_usage_set id="twohanded_axe" information. These have been assigned "staff" animations instead of the native "2h" ones.

The test was carried out with the four two-handed axes that appear in the troop trees:
1.-Short Bill
2.-Drilled two-handed axe
3.-Southern broad two-handed axe
4.-Executioners axe

In the native we have the issue that I mention in this thread, a two handed axe is not a bat that can be wielded as a 2h sword, but rather as a polearm.

Apart from this, there is an inconsistency in Native when it comes to use on foot or mounted. It is curious how #1 and 2# are wielded as a 2h sword when fighting on foot, but when mounted, they operate as a 2h polearm.

The test changes all this. No more bat swings, this weapons are now polearms both on foot and on horseback. Take a look at this:


Perhaps the more observant may have noticed a detail. When mounted, the swing arcs are reduced as I commented in this thread, something that for the use of any polearm should be (or so I understand it) in mounted combat.
 
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Hmmm, but does this affect the time to hit, damage and rage? Do modified version looks slower, and there could be a slight difference in range or some disalignment in the animations. But overall I think it looks better, of course there could be some more optimization on the timings, physics and animations to better reflect the type of weapon in use, length, blade type and size and weight distribution are naturally different. The best option here would be to ask professionals on martial arts to gather some info on the animations and even record the movements with a motion capture equipment. I have seen videos from some years ago where some dudes (hired by TW) were motion capturing all kind of animations, I guess they failed to get someone with actual expertise and the animations still look broken at times.
PLEASE FIX THE ANIMATIONS, I WANT THEM ASS SMOOTH AS POSSIBLE
 
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Aurex

Veteran
WB
Thanks for the time spent doing this. I would kill (in-game, not IRL) to have the "updated" animations. The thing that always bothered me in Bannerlord is how unsatisfying and janky most weapons feels. Especially the glaive-like polearms: they shouldn't be able to be swung with that obscene arc that makes them undisputed kings of the battlefield.
 

Terco_Viejo

Spanish Gifquisition
Grandmaster Knight
Thanks guys for the kind words. Know that always with every proposal (how and why / my opinion) that I bring to the eyes of the devs, I open the debate among us players for the topic brought up.

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@Lusitani 5th Empire

Take a look at this comparative video test. In it I have selected this aserai unit, which is equipped with the "southern broad two handed axe" which is the shortest of the axes tested in the previous video.


It is true that the attack range is reduced in the modified version, but the reduction is minimal. As for the speed; I am of the opinion that this type of weapon should not have the same manoeuvrability as a 2h sword where the balance is concentrated towards the pommel.

In axes and even more so in those with a considerable blade mass, the balance is inclined towards the tip where all that mass is concentrated and therefore applying so much energy in a side swing aimed at the ribs of an enemy, if the strike is missed, the recovery "in bat mode" will be much less than in a 2h sword. In axes and even more so in those with a considerable blade mass, the balance is inclined towards the tip where all that mass is concentrated and therefore applying so much energy in a side swing aimed at the ribs of an enemy, if the strike is missed, technically the recovery "in bat mode" should be worse in this mode.

This is why the modified version "operates like a polearm" where the swing speed is more reduced. As for the damage (technically the less speed, the less damage according to the formula), that wouldn't be a problem; only the item itself would need to be edited. In the tests I've carried out, I haven't measured it explicitly, but the loss of damage rate would be ridiculous (direct swings to the skull are still instant kills).
 

Calabanar

Sergeant
Hmmm... I wonder if it makes a noticeable difference with AI troops.

Have you tried pitching two armies wielding those 2-handed axes? One battle using native and one using the modified version.
Testing against shielded troops could be interesting too, it leaves a slightly bigger window of reaction for the AI, so perhaps it will block more?
 

Terco_Viejo

Spanish Gifquisition
Grandmaster Knight
Hmmm... I wonder if it makes a noticeable difference with AI troops.

Have you tried pitching two armies wielding those 2-handed axes? One battle using native and one using the modified version.
Testing against shielded troops could be interesting too, it leaves a slightly bigger window of reaction for the AI, so perhaps it will block more?
For all these tests I use mod Enhanced Battle Test and actually in AI vs AI combat with axe units like "line breakers", "billman", etc... with the modifications there are hardly any differences that suppose a decisive factor for both advantage and handicap 😌 .
 

DainMorgot

Sergeant
This needs the dev's attention. 2H axes look extremely retarded because of this, please fix it and hire a proper animator, you made millions with bannerlord, stop being cheap
 
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Calabanar

Sergeant
For all these tests I use mod Enhanced Battle Test and actually in AI vs AI combat with axe units like "line breakers", "billman", etc... with the modifications there are hardly any differences that suppose a decisive factor for both advantage and handicap 😌 .
I suppose that's good then, it means it would be easy to implement and shouldn't cause any problems!

With the amount of love and dedication you put in this game, you are nothing short of a dev yourself; respect.
 
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