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Pickaxe & mutation tunneling too effective #25553

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FulcrumA opened this Issue Sep 12, 2018 · 12 comments

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FulcrumA commented Sep 12, 2018

Describe the bug
As per discord discussion and checking of various materials hardness (Mohs' scale) it was determined that certain walls should be too resistant for things like teeth & claw digging (rat mutation, possible giant molerats) or even a pickaxe wielded by a brawny character.

Even upscaled with size rodents shouldn't be able to dig through hardened steel (like the kind used in creation of vaults) or reinforced concrete at all. Rat mutation suggests that's what player's character is becoming - a big rat so we can assume that their teeth and claws have still around 5.5 mohs scale hardness at best, like in case of regular rats - they're just bigger and thicker.

It's already pretty impressive but should be subjected to regular rat chewing limitations. It would help making the current dig-through-wall-when-the-door-is-closed thing a decent feature that's not an exploit.

Expected behavior
Pickaxe shouldn't be able to get through certain walls even when wielded by a pretty brawny character (inhumanly high strength augmented by mutations and CBMs could get over that limitation) and neither should natural teeth & claws of mutated characters - mostly in relation to metal and concrete (which seems to be reinforced concrete) ones.

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secretfire42 Sep 12, 2018

Good change. Keep in mind the site you linked to notes that, though not likely, rats 'can' chew through steel/concrete if structurally compromised, or if its 'weak concrete' (i.e. cheap). That would include rust, water damage/etc. So we'd have to worry about them getting through 'damaged' good concrete or 'cheap' concrete. Or rusted metal. While I'm not aware of the game damaging things over time due to the freeze-thaw cycle, you should probably 'be aware' that after an in-game year or two, many buildings/areas made of these materials would have 'somewhere' that they could dig through.

Of course, with the time change I don't see that coming up for any players in a practical sense anytime soon, but.

secretfire42 commented Sep 12, 2018

Good change. Keep in mind the site you linked to notes that, though not likely, rats 'can' chew through steel/concrete if structurally compromised, or if its 'weak concrete' (i.e. cheap). That would include rust, water damage/etc. So we'd have to worry about them getting through 'damaged' good concrete or 'cheap' concrete. Or rusted metal. While I'm not aware of the game damaging things over time due to the freeze-thaw cycle, you should probably 'be aware' that after an in-game year or two, many buildings/areas made of these materials would have 'somewhere' that they could dig through.

Of course, with the time change I don't see that coming up for any players in a practical sense anytime soon, but.

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FulcrumA Sep 12, 2018

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that, though not likely, rats 'can' chew through steel/concrete if structurally compromised, or if its 'weak concrete' (i.e. cheap). That would include rust, water damage/etc.

True, though those details greatl affect the picture.

In case of concrete it refers not to damaged or cheap but simply not cured properly concrete. Curing isn't a function of quality of the material but its handling during and immediately after construction. Properly made walls, rather than shoddy attempts at them, will have the concrete cured properly and once cured it will take quite some time for weather to significantly weaken it and in case of structures like underground labs where walls aren't directly subjected to the elements - likely at a scale of time that may be as well "forever" in game terms, as you've mentioned.

Similar with rusted metal where it's mentioned that the metal has to be rusted in general - metal walls with merely a patina of rust is still a metal wall, just thinner as far as the actual protective metal layer goes and so should protect well enough at least against rodents. Rust has to develop noticeably and deep into the metal itself to make it more fragile. On top of that, metal used in non-improvised wall construction is coated with some anti-rust solution/paint which even when chipped would require multitude of years for rust to penetrate sufficiently to threaten the overall structure.

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FulcrumA commented Sep 12, 2018

that, though not likely, rats 'can' chew through steel/concrete if structurally compromised, or if its 'weak concrete' (i.e. cheap). That would include rust, water damage/etc.

True, though those details greatl affect the picture.

In case of concrete it refers not to damaged or cheap but simply not cured properly concrete. Curing isn't a function of quality of the material but its handling during and immediately after construction. Properly made walls, rather than shoddy attempts at them, will have the concrete cured properly and once cured it will take quite some time for weather to significantly weaken it and in case of structures like underground labs where walls aren't directly subjected to the elements - likely at a scale of time that may be as well "forever" in game terms, as you've mentioned.

Similar with rusted metal where it's mentioned that the metal has to be rusted in general - metal walls with merely a patina of rust is still a metal wall, just thinner as far as the actual protective metal layer goes and so should protect well enough at least against rodents. Rust has to develop noticeably and deep into the metal itself to make it more fragile. On top of that, metal used in non-improvised wall construction is coated with some anti-rust solution/paint which even when chipped would require multitude of years for rust to penetrate sufficiently to threaten the overall structure.

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AbsalomAchitophel526 Sep 12, 2018

If you can't pickaxe your way through concrete or steel, then what WOULD you use the pickaxe on? Similarly, rat claws are a post-threshold mutation - rat's trademark, as well as it's ability to eat garbage.

A banks vaults' construction is predicated on armed guards and personal guarding it - remove that infrastructure and it is only a matter of time before you can break in.

AbsalomAchitophel526 commented Sep 12, 2018

If you can't pickaxe your way through concrete or steel, then what WOULD you use the pickaxe on? Similarly, rat claws are a post-threshold mutation - rat's trademark, as well as it's ability to eat garbage.

A banks vaults' construction is predicated on armed guards and personal guarding it - remove that infrastructure and it is only a matter of time before you can break in.

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Rivet-the-Zombie Sep 13, 2018

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A rat mutant has rat-like teeth and claws being driven by human muscles - the amount of force they can put out is going to be exponentially more powerful than an actual rat can apply.

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Rivet-the-Zombie commented Sep 13, 2018

A rat mutant has rat-like teeth and claws being driven by human muscles - the amount of force they can put out is going to be exponentially more powerful than an actual rat can apply.

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FulcrumA Sep 13, 2018

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But there's not description of those teeth and claws being significantly harder than already surprising 5.5 on the Mohs' scale. And I'd be very careful about claiming it's more, while at the same time, with such hardness greater muscle power in big part means they'll break their teeth and claw with greater power if stubbornly attempting to break the concrete or metal wall.

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FulcrumA commented Sep 13, 2018

@Rivet-the-Zombie
But there's not description of those teeth and claws being significantly harder than already surprising 5.5 on the Mohs' scale. And I'd be very careful about claiming it's more, while at the same time, with such hardness greater muscle power in big part means they'll break their teeth and claw with greater power if stubbornly attempting to break the concrete or metal wall.

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I could buy an argument for harder teeth and claws, but incrementally, it's still not going to deal with concrete, steel and rock.

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kevingranade commented Sep 13, 2018

I could buy an argument for harder teeth and claws, but incrementally, it's still not going to deal with concrete, steel and rock.

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pikolinianita Sep 15, 2018

If mutation can double character strenght, If Blob can make Hulks...
Claws of WereRats could be made from nano structured diamond and powered by High-Blob muscles... So each "reality" argument seems strange for me (because gameplay/balance issues should be considered first)

pikolinianita commented Sep 15, 2018

If mutation can double character strenght, If Blob can make Hulks...
Claws of WereRats could be made from nano structured diamond and powered by High-Blob muscles... So each "reality" argument seems strange for me (because gameplay/balance issues should be considered first)

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FulcrumA Sep 16, 2018

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@pikolinianita
The reasoning is based in realism (or if you really want - believability) but is meant to address how certain VERY sturdy walls can be breached too easily - like through the use of rat mutation or a pickaxe.

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FulcrumA commented Sep 16, 2018

@pikolinianita
The reasoning is based in realism (or if you really want - believability) but is meant to address how certain VERY sturdy walls can be breached too easily - like through the use of rat mutation or a pickaxe.

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Endovior Sep 18, 2018

I could buy an argument for harder teeth and claws, but incrementally, it's still not going to deal with concrete, steel and rock.

Eh, there's precedent for the cataclysm giving creatures the ability to dig through solid rock; ants. Clearly, nature (and the blob) finds a way.

Since the vast majority of the underground is 'solid rock', any tunnelling ability that doesn't work on rock is essentially useless. Given that giant tunnelling molerats exist as is, it's reasonable for rat mutants to share that ability. It's still reasonable for extra-strong walls to defy common tunnelling powers, of course; but for those special situations, there can be special equipment.

Endovior commented Sep 18, 2018

I could buy an argument for harder teeth and claws, but incrementally, it's still not going to deal with concrete, steel and rock.

Eh, there's precedent for the cataclysm giving creatures the ability to dig through solid rock; ants. Clearly, nature (and the blob) finds a way.

Since the vast majority of the underground is 'solid rock', any tunnelling ability that doesn't work on rock is essentially useless. Given that giant tunnelling molerats exist as is, it's reasonable for rat mutants to share that ability. It's still reasonable for extra-strong walls to defy common tunnelling powers, of course; but for those special situations, there can be special equipment.

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Marrim Sep 21, 2018

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But there's not description of those teeth and claws being significantly harder than already surprising 5.5 on the Mohs' scale.

But yes there is.

Your paws are bone, muscle, and claw with a thin layer of skin and fur. They might as well be made of stainless steel.

Just because it is a reference to a certain book series doesn't invalidate the statement.

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Marrim commented Sep 21, 2018

But there's not description of those teeth and claws being significantly harder than already surprising 5.5 on the Mohs' scale.

But yes there is.

Your paws are bone, muscle, and claw with a thin layer of skin and fur. They might as well be made of stainless steel.

Just because it is a reference to a certain book series doesn't invalidate the statement.

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FulcrumA Sep 21, 2018

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@Marrim
They may as well be, but it's likely just a poetic license. However, even if taken literally - which would be quite a stretch - stainless steel is still too weak to deal with certain materials, as pointed out already.

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FulcrumA commented Sep 21, 2018

@Marrim
They may as well be, but it's likely just a poetic license. However, even if taken literally - which would be quite a stretch - stainless steel is still too weak to deal with certain materials, as pointed out already.

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Marrim Sep 21, 2018

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I still take it as they are harder than a common rat's claws.
Digging through solid rock should be possible. Metal bunker walls, probably not.

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Marrim commented Sep 21, 2018

I still take it as they are harder than a common rat's claws.
Digging through solid rock should be possible. Metal bunker walls, probably not.

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