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According to the in-game tooltip, the official site, and practically every other source the duration of the Viking's transform ability is 3 seconds (either from ground to air or air to ground). However, when transforming a large group of vikings it seems that they don't all finish the transformation at precisely the same instant.

I've read that this divergence is simply created by them moving a little before starting the transformation, for spacing, but upon testing it behaves the same even if I space them in advance. Besides, it happens in the ground to air transformation as well, which doesn't really have any positioning issues.

Is it just a cosmetic effect and the ability does have a constant duration, or does it actually have a random element, just like burrowing has a random element in the duration?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 8 down vote accepted

In Galaxy Data Editor, on the Morph ability for both Viking - Assault Mode and Viking - Fighter Mode, the Random Delay Maximum field is set to 0.5 (seconds). It's just a pre-transform delay for effect :) It also explains the lack of delay on move commands, blink, stim, etc. (they don't have this field set, and in fact may not have it at all)

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Thanks! I tried looking for data in the editor but could not find it... I couldn't even find the "3 seconds" data for the ability itself :( –  Oak Aug 24 '11 at 8:16
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@Oak: To find it, open the editor, then click the middle button in the group one left of the far right set of buttons below the toolbar. This opens the data editor. Now under the Data Type dropdown, pick Abilities, then search for Viking (search bar in the same pane as said dropdown). Pick one, then double click on the first item in the Ability Commands - Morph Info page. You'll get a dialog with more info and the duration is, i'm pretty sure, the the largest Duration value in Info - Sections - Durations. The random delay is at the bottom of the same window. –  RCIX Aug 24 '11 at 8:25
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Cool! Though I still couldn't find that 3 seconds timer, only 2.34. Perhaps the actual duration is 2.34 + rand(0.5)? –  Oak Aug 24 '11 at 8:46
    
@Oak: I think it rounds up to the next whole number for time, so yeah that makes sense (2.84 rounds up to 3). –  RCIX Aug 25 '11 at 15:29

While it might be that the 'bumping' causes subtle delays in transforming when landing, you seem to have controlled for that. An only tangentally-related issue is when you command several to land at a time in a small space, is that some won't at all because it's too crowded.

The nominal transform duration is 3 game seconds, which is about 2.2 real seconds on "Fastest", however there is a small degree of variance beyond just the animation. This is readily apparent if you give the vikings a move command while transforming, into either air or land mode as some will set off before others. Additionally, it doesn't seem deterministic as far as where the unit's selected in a control group—the first to transform one time won't always be the next—so it is possibly random.

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