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Filed away for future voting, if ever.

Zombie Hunter skill: Disembowel

Timestamp: Aeon17x 12:31, 30 August 2010 (BST)
Type: New skill
Scope: Level 10+ survivors who can buy the skill, receiving zombies
Description: Ever wonder how can you still trigger a Headshot when you're using melee weapons like fire axes and knives? I guess if you keep at hitting the head hard enough you probably can do it, but that takes more effort and time than a simple bullet, and in a zombie apocalypse you won't have enough of the time part. I feel the flavor is a bit amiss with that.

So I've been thinking: what if there was a separate Zombie Hunter skill when you kill a zombie with those weapons? That is what the Disembowel skill is for.

Disembowel - If the player delivers a killing blow to a zombie with a knife or fire axe, it stands up with 20 less HP from its maximum hit points.

It costs 100 XP, and since it's a Zombie Hunter skill it's only available for survivors level 10 and above. Besides that it has no other prerequisite. The flavor is that with the knife or fire axe, the Zombie Hunter would further mutilate the zombie's body and heavily damage the organs and muscles; being a Malton zombie it would still stand up after that, but with a weakened constitution than usual.

Headshot still works the same for all other melee weapons like the crowbar, but for the knife and fire axe Disembowel has a higher priority than Headshot. If the player has both Headshot and Disembowel skills when they kill a zombie with a knife or fire axe, then the receiving zombie would not be Headshot and stand up with 5 less AP; instead it would be Disemboweled and stand up with 20 less HP.

Some things to consider:

  • 20 HP might be a relatively huge HP loss, but zombies with Digestion can recover it by feeding on dead corpses. To recover 20 HP it would take 5 AP of feeding, which is also the amount of AP lost with Headshot.
  • Zombie players would feel benefitted by the new skill since there's a chance they will only lose 10/1 AP upon death instead of 15/6 AP, if the survivor chooses to finish them off with a Disembowel instead of a Headshot. This would also be advantageous to the survivor since the next time they kill a Disemboweled zombie it would have 20 less HP if it hasn't recovered them. This leads to higher XP gain for both sides, with the zombies having more daily AP to play with and the survivors achieving the kill XP bonus more easily.
  • In siege situations this can either bolster or weaken the attacking zombie force, depending on the strategies used. If the zombies are experts on ?rise then using Disembowel to repel them would be fruitless, as even if they rise with 20 less HP they still stand up for only 10/1 AP. On the other hand if the zombies employ the Beachhead Tactic, on the long run the zombies might be worse off as they can be quickly evicted from the building with their significantly reduced hit points.

Personally at the start I don't believe Disembowel would change much in normal play since most trenchies would still choose to finish zombies with guns and therefore Headshot. But who knows, if many survivors would use it it could lead to new strategies being developed, not only for the survivor side but also from the zombies who adapt to it. Would it help out survivors or zombies more? Hell if I know, but it's something to think about.

Discussion (Zombie Hunter skill: Disembowel)

It seems rather a useless skill overall. Zombies have very little regard for HP. Even a 20HP loss isn't much. I don't think too many people would get this skill, since headshot removes 5AP immediately, rather than a HP reduction, which MIGHT mean that the zed is easier to kill or will use 5 AP to recover, but that the zeds will most likely ignore.

However, the zombie users would definitely like it (I know I would!). I think the issue is that it's too underpowered for the survivors. Why get a skill which actually somewhat HELPS the enemy? Shadok T Balance is power 13:27, 30 August 2010 (BST)

I haven't really considered if it clearly favors either side, all I can tell Disembowel is a very situational skill. When HP deficiency on zombies would make the survivors gain an upper hand it's great, otherwise Headshot is the way to go. Some examples I could think of:
  • Recovering ruins: with at least a one third reduction in zombie hit points, the survivors spend a similar lesser amount of AP on cleaning up zombies from within ruins. This makes TRP salting harder, and the 5 AP they save is a small reward compared to losing territory to survivors.
  • Anti-griefing mechanism: some survivors still believe that Headshot's AP loss property is harsh on zombie players who are after all humans in real life. With Disembowel these players can still contribute in keeping down the zombie menace by picking this skill instead of (or in conjunction with) Headshot, rather than not picking up a Zombie Hunter skill at all. --Aeon17x 14:09, 30 August 2010 (BST)

Uhm.. I like this, but there is this suggestion that is very similar. It's written by you! :p - User:Whitehouse 14:19, 30 August 2010 (BST)

Yeah, it's inspired by that. :-) From that suggestion I figured Headshot has had too much controversy with it to be tweaked any further, so I remade the concept as a new Zombie Hunter skill. --Aeon17x 14:32, 30 August 2010 (BST)

You know, I've got so many bones to pick with this suggestion's format, but I actually like the core concept a lot. Either way it's a 5 AP drain on the undead, but this allows (high level) zombies to choose whether to pay it or not. The only players who are really inconvenienced by this, as I see it, are Combat Revivers, and I doubt anyone will lose sleep over them (or us, as it happens). Newbies might find themselves dying a bit more often with this implemented, but they only lose 40% of their HP and get to drop a 50% greater AP drain for it. That's a net win and another reason for this. Lelouch vi Britannia is helping make Ridleybank green_ and gives Achievements 19:06, 30 August 2010 (BST)

no No NO NO! NO!!! When you first started the idea, it sounded great, because I was thinking "Hey, a realistic way for a survivor to headshot someone with a god damn fire axe!" but HP is important. It's not as important as AP, I admit, but I've logged on plenty of times with only 2 HP left, and plenty of AP so that I can attack survivors when I would have been dead, and had to spend an extra 5 AP if I hadn't IMPROVED my HP... I admit that I dislike the unrealistic effects headshot has with melee weapons, but taking away our HP isn't the answer... I would like to suggest changing it to the 5 AP and headshot doesn't work with melee weapons, only disembowl, but I'm sure I'd get the rants of everyone on this wiki since about 9/10 of the wiki users are pro-survivor. --Gat 04:50, 31 August 2010 (BST)

Zombies don't ever care about HP. Unless they're indoors. Like the suggestion said. The only real use of this would be to make establishing a beachhead harder for zombies, and gives late-level survivors a generally good buff in a siege situation. Which is the only situation where survivors are even remotely underpowered. And, if anything, it contributes to the fun of the game. With good coordination, sieges could actually be a real challenge again between survivors and zombies, instead of the regular old steamroll followed by trenchies whining.
If a survivor uses it on a zombie in any other situation, it wouldn't care about spending the 5(+) AP to heal up. There's no reason to. But in a siege situation, 20 HP off a zombie makes a hell of a lot of difference. And I play mostly Dual Natured PKers, so we're not bringing sides into this, Gat.
So totes in support, yo. RinKou 07:04, 31 August 2010 (BST)
Thank you, couldn't have said it better myself. --Aeon17x 11:56, 1 September 2010 (BST)

This is a massive survivor buff. It robs smart zombies of 5 IP hits if they can find a body that is neither reviving nor already eaten, and leaves the less than smart zombies with only 80% effectiveness. I suggest an alternative: New Skill, Disembowel, is required to get a headshot with a melee weapon, while headshot covers firearms. --VVV RPGMBCWS 05:01, 31 August 2010 (BST)

It's really up to the receiving zombie whether they'll choose to heal the 20 HP. If they don't, that's great, they don't lose 5 AP. If they do then the 5 AP it takes to heal it all makes it the same as Headshot. There may be some lost AP when searching for dead bodies to feed, but it's a risk that's up to the zombie's choice whether it spends any AP to recover health in the first place -- unlike with Headshot, where they are pretty much guaranteed to lose 5 AP. I believe if the zombies figure out it's a bigger benefit if they don't heal the missing HP at all then they'll adjust accordingly. --Aeon17x 10:11, 31 August 2010 (BST)

I like it, it's just a shame that the current circumstances in the game are begging for more zombie buffs rather than survivor buffs. I'd still vote keep though. maybe make it 10HP not 20hp tbh. -- LEMON #1 06:43, 31 August 2010 (BST)

Also, as UUU above, good call on the differentiating headshot and this proposed skill. -- LEMON #1 07:37, 31 August 2010 (BST)
This is rather raw math-craft, but it would be too favorable for the zombies if they only lose 10 HP in exchange for no additional AP loss. With 10 HP loss it would only offset the HP bonus from body building/flesh rot and in siege situations, meatshielding would be considerably more effective. But with a 20 HP loss, 60 HP zombies with body building/flesh rot become 40 HP armored targets; if in this state they were to be mostly damaged with firearms, the AP expenditure would be the same as on 50 HP unarmored zombies.
As for the current circumstances... lately it seems the balance is shifting to the zombie side after the August update. It's too early to tell if it stays that way though. --Aeon17x 10:11, 31 August 2010 (BST)

This suggestion is better than it seemed at first glance. If you can get people to read through it rather than vote on simple knee-jerk reaction, I think you have a decent chance of getting it passed. Implementation is, of course, another thing entirely, but I think this could definitely be a worthwhile option, and one I'd certainly prefer to getting headshot! Tongue :P ᚱᛖᚢᛖᚾᚨᚾ 06:15, 1 September 2010 (BST)

Thanks for the support. I might run this into voting if the balance starts favoring zombies around 60:40. DDR has a point that the survivors at present do not need a buff (since no matter how refined the skill is, it will still be perceived as a 'buff' for the sole fact that it's for Zombie Hunter), and once BB3 is over we might see a survivor bounce to the usual ratio favoring them. --Aeon17x 11:56, 1 September 2010 (BST)

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