Star Wars KotOR Combat Guide
Note: this is my first walkthrough, so i don't know what technical stuff to put in.
And just to let you know, there may be (which really means there probably will be) inaccuracies/spelling mistakes/grammatical errors/problems in this guide. If you find something wrong, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll fix it as soon as I can.
I'll just start...
This is an important part of KotOR and works differently to other games. Armour is in three classes (Light, Medium and Heavy), each requiring the relevant feat to use (feats, for those who don't know, are special abilities and skills you select at level up eg. Heavy Weapons Proficiency, Sniper Shot). The heavier the armour, the greater the defence bonus but the dexterity bonus to defence is restricted.
To explain armour properly, I have to first explain the way the defence works.
Unlike other games, in KotOR the defence score is compared to the 'roll' and the attacker's 'to hit' (attack) score to determine a HIT, not an amount of damage reduction. eg. If the attacker's 'roll'(read your manuals!) is 2 and their attack bonus is 8 (for a total of 10), they won't hit you if your defence is 11 or more. This means a good strategy is to have high defence to avoid being hit, as you gradually whittle away their HP with your attacks.
Bonuses for defence
Dexterity is the main bonus for defence. When you check your dexterity on the Attributes page, it will have a bonus value (-1, +2, depends on the actual dexterity score). This bonus adds to your defence which makes you harder to hit. So, when searching for the right suit of armour, check the restriction on dexterity if your character has high dexterity, if they don't, just check the defence score. With a bit of fiddling around, you'll find the right suit of armour that maximises your dexterity.
MINOR PIECES OF ARMOUR:
These are the belts, gloves/gauntlets/shields, helmets/headgear. These are just as important as the suit of aromour in determining how you're protected.Below is a brief overview.
Shields are equipped to the left or right arm slot and act as a, well, a shield. They are different to armour as they don't determine whether you're hit or not, they absorb damage for you. Each type of shield is different and absorbs different combinations of types of damage for different amounts. eg. The basic energy shield deflects energy attacks (blasters, unmodified lightsabers and similar weapons) for about 200 points. These are ABSOLUTELY CRITICAL to your survival in KotOR, especially when fighting against major opponents.
This is a pretty wide-ranging section. There are many varieties of belt, from the stealth belts used to avoid combat, to belts that offer shielding from the elements and enemy attacks. Stealth is used similar to attack/defence. The person using stealth has a stealth value, compared to the opponent's awareness value. If the awareness is higher than the stealth, you will be spotted and attacked. A powerful stealth belt to use is the Genoharadan stealth belt. The protective belts can have shields, such as the (anti-thermal?) belt that can be bought on Tatooine by the trader at the docking bay the Ebon Hawk stays at. This offers excellent protection from fire-based attacks (droid's flamethrowers for example).
These can offer protection as armour, but most helmets have special uses. There are gas masks that protect from poison and visors that increase awareness to name a couple. These are not generally useful in combat, but if you know what you're facing, (like an infected rhakgoul or other creature) equip the most suitable mask/headgear (in this case the gas mask thing).
Weapons are (obviously) the lifeblood of combat. Without a weapon, you won't survive. There are a couple of basic classes of weapons, which I will explain now...
One of the trademarks of the Star Wars universe, there are actually many more types of blaster in KotOR than the basic 'laser gun'. There are blasters to inhibit enemies, blaster's to paralyse enemies, and blaster especially suited to organic beings and ones for droids/shields too. Most types have a pistol and rifle variation, with some special heavy weaponry. When checking which blaster to use in a certain situation, consider this:
Droids are vulnerable to ion balsters (you get a damgae bonus when using an ion blaster on a droid)
Shields are shorted out by ion blasters (similar to droids)
Unshielded people/other organic beings are susceptible to the power of the mighty disruptor blasters.
Sonic weapons inhibit the abilities of organic beings
Values are the important bits when selecting which blaster to use.
These are the most useful weapons aside from lightsabers in KotOR. Let's face it: blasters are almost obsolete in this game, and it's really disappointing that they aren't more flexible aginst melee opponents (an attack bonus for hitting at point blank range, maybe, LucasArts? KotOR 3 would be musch better with a better balance of weapons). You will use a melee weapon or lightsaber in KotOR. It's unavoidable. Anyway, melee weapons are the swords, staffs and other pointy, sharp and sometimes electrically boosted blades and sticks. Not useful after you get your lightsaber, so just look at your values before deciding upon which stick you want to use to beat that Black Vulkar to death with.
This is the weapon of the Jedi. Once receiving the training and passing the tests, you will have the ability to wield this almighty weapon. Each lightsaber can be modified to do extra damge, ion damage, or many other types of damage. There are double-bladed lightsabers for all those Darth Maul fans and short lightsabers for the Yoda lovers. Feats such as duelling and two-weapon fighting affect attack bonuses for lightsabers (and every other weapon too), so make sure you know what you are using suits you. Modifying lightsabers is relatively simple and very effective. When at a workbench, rearrange crystals to better suit your style. Pick anice colour too. Don't be afraid of red, nobody will care.
More to come in later versions.