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Fallen Enchantress gives you basic information about your weapon and armor, summing up your attack rating as "8 cutting," and your defense as a straight number like 24 (though some armor gives extra bonuses against some attacks; chain mail has a bonus against cutting damage, for instance). Unfortunately, the in-game tutorial is pretty useless; it will get you started, but doesn't give any fine details that would help you optimize your play.

How does a weapon's attack rating relate to how much damage you do against an unarmored opponent? How does armor affect the damage? Is elemental/magic damage calculated differently, i.e. can you bypass heavy armor by using fire bolt? If an attack has multiple types, like 9 cutting and 2 fire, how is the damage calculated?

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Defense directly subtracts from a units attack rating. So if you have an attack of 10 and are attacking a unit with a defense of 5, your max damage is (10-5)=5. I believe your damage is then subjected to a spread of maybe half(?) the max damage for 2-5 or 3-5 potential damage.

Elemental damage does bypass defense but can be countered by elemental resistance. So a fireball would be good for a high armor target unless he has a high fire resistance as well.

Now there are also different types of physical damage as you mentioned, if you're using a cutting weapon and the unit has a specific bonus vs cutting damage your damage would be reduced past the minus from it's defense.

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Looks like it's not quite subtractive. For one, early Defender units can easily have ~20 defense and 10 attack, which would make them invincible. (And they're not.) I also found this post which says "if attack == defense, then damage is halved." forums.elementalgame.com/435680 (Alas, it doesn't actually give the formula.) –  Paul Marshall Apr 3 '13 at 0:28
    
Well I have seen units that have such a high defense that a low attack unit will barely damage them, usually it' something like 0-1 damage. Also, it's possible for defense to so outweigh attack that the resulting attack is Clink -- which does no damage. Still, I think you're probably right about it not being quite subtractive, I guess I'll have to relook at that some time. –  control Apr 3 '13 at 20:39
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