Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

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Arryosha
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Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by Arryosha »

Hello!

I am looking for information on the relationship between attributes and skills in Daggerfall. I have seen this question asked many times on other forums, but no one seems to have an answer. I am hoping against hope that someone here happens to know.

The the only thing the Daggerfall manual says about this relationship is "Each skill has a governing attribute which acts as the skill's upper limit and is factored into some equations when the skill is used." I assume this is accurate, but the second part is also pretty vague.

The UESP wiki on attributes says, "Most attributes are said to "govern" specific skills, although this relationship does not actually have any in-game effect. Attributes and skills fundamentally define a character's ability to perform any given action in the game." This is also vague and possibly self-contradictory. The wiki also says that the attribute determines "how easy" the governed skill levels. I take this to mean "how quickly," but, again, vague.

So, from what I can tell, attributes:
  • act as a cap on skill level. In Morrowind, I think this means STR=X means governed skill cap=X, so I am assuming this is how it works in Daggerfall.
  • have various in-game effects on how a skill is used (from the manual: "Intelligence...is a factor in intelligence-related skills such as negotiating and lockpicking")
  • determine how quickly a skill levels, i.e. how many uses of the skill are required for the skill to go up a level.
The first is clear enough, but the other two are not. It would be nice to have actual numbers or even equations, since knowing only that an attribute has a positive effect on leveling speed or "is a factor" in skill use success does not help you figure out whether, for instance, it is worth putting more points in INT or whether to just ignore it.

If anyone happens to know of a resource, it would be greatly appreciated, and perhaps the wiki could then be made clearer.

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numidium3rd
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Re: Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by numidium3rd »

Welcome to the forums! I'll try to answer your questions the best I can from looking at the code base.
act as a cap on skill level. In Morrowind, I think this means STR=X means governed skill cap=X, so I am assuming this is how it works in Daggerfall.
The attributes don't limit skill increases in Daggerfall. The only limitations on skill increases are: 1. only one skill can increase to 100 while all others are capped at 95 and 2. trainers can't train above 50.
have various in-game effects on how a skill is used (from the manual: "Intelligence...is a factor in intelligence-related skills such as negotiating and lockpicking")
The original manual has a lot of misinformation unfortunately. Intelligence, for example, only affects your spell points and nothing else. Personality is the only attribute that affects pacification chance (i.e. negotiation).
determine how quickly a skill levels, i.e. how many uses of the skill are required for the skill to go up a level.
I don't see anything in the code to suggest that any attributes make it easier for skills to go up, despite what the game's own text says.

I'm fairly sure that this is how it was in the original game as well since all the mechanics are reverse-engineered to match as closely as possible (aside from quality of life changes, bug fixes, etc.) I say "fairly" only because I didn't verify the decompiled code myself. I trust in the dev team's ability to do so, though.

An updated manual based on the game's actual mechanics would be a noble goal if there isn't one in the works already.

Arryosha
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Re: Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by Arryosha »

Thank you for the prompt and helpful reply!

What you say suggests that the whole idea of attributes governing skills is misleading to say the least. At least, in the case of INT, if what you say is correct, the manual is wrong in stating that INT governs Medical and Languages. A bit disappointing, but good to know.

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XJDHDR
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Re: Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by XJDHDR »

numidium3rd wrote: Sat Dec 12, 2020 1:21 am 1. only one skill can increase to 100 while all others are capped at 95
It's technically more nuanced than that. It's once you level one of your three Primary Skills to 100 that all your other skills are capped at 95. Before this happens, you may raise all of your skills above 95 or even raise your non-Primary skills to 100. Once a Primary Skill reaches 100, these other skills above 95 will retain their current values and simply stop increasing.
Last edited by XJDHDR on Mon Dec 14, 2020 8:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Ralzar
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Re: Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by Ralzar »

XJDHDR wrote: Sun Dec 13, 2020 9:49 pm
numidium3rd wrote: Sat Dec 12, 2020 1:21 am 1. only one skill can increase to 100 while all others are capped at 95
It's technically more nuanced than that. It's once you level one of your three Primary Skills to 100 that all your other skills are capped at 95. Before this happens, you may raise all of your skills above 95 or even raise your non-Primary skills to 100. Once a Primary Skill reaches 100, these other skills will retain their current values and simply stop increasing.
Are you sure about the primary part? I was always under the impression that it was any skill to 100%. Which is why you might want to stop running everywhere after a while even if running is still not one of your primaries.
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pango
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Re: Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by pango »

Ralzar wrote: Sun Dec 13, 2020 10:43 pm Are you sure about the primary part? I was always under the impression that it was any skill to 100%. Which is why you might want to stop running everywhere after a while even if running is still not one of your primaries.
Yup: https://github.com/Interkarma/daggerfal ... y.cs#L1383
When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure.
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numidium3rd
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Re: Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by numidium3rd »

Thanks for the corrections regarding the skill caps. How odd that increasing one of your primary skills to 100 suddenly stunts all your other skills. It feels like a feature that wasn't fully thought out before implementation. A result of the rushed timetable Bethesda was working with at the time, probably.

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XJDHDR
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Re: Daggerfall "governing attributes" question

Post by XJDHDR »

Ralzar wrote: Sun Dec 13, 2020 10:43 pm Are you sure about the primary part? I was always under the impression that it was any skill to 100%.
I read this somewhere on the forum a while ago. But more importantly, my current save has two of the Major skills at 100 and one Miscellaneous skill at 98. So yes, I'm confident that it works the way I described.

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