Using Python3 To Estimate BIS Gear Sets For Ninja.

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Using Python3 to estimate BIS gear sets for Ninja.
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By Izanami 2021-07-19 18:31:31
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While a simple average is nice and convenient for DPS spreadsheets, it does not tell the whole story for most weapon skills. To know exactly how your weapon skill damage will be distributed, you need detailed information about your stats, the enemy you're fighting, and the mechanics of weapon skill damage. As a side-project to learn a bit of basic Python3 programming and about the FFXI damage formulae, I've written a Python3 code to simulate weapon skills and obtain distributions of the damage being dealt given a set of gear and an enemy.

I'm not very familiar with GitHub, but I've put the code on my newly-created GitHub page (https://github.com/IzaKastra/wsdist).

The code is not meant to replace DPS spreadsheets, but the gear sets provided here should agree with the spreadsheets reasonably well. I encourage you to play around with the sets provided here within the spreadsheets to find potentially better or worse options that fit within your gear budget. The sets provided here are a nice starting place for use with the spreadsheets. The code has an added benefit of working with all jobs and all physical and hybrid weapon skills (after minor modifications to adjust for different player race/job stats). This allowed me to also check the best Evisceration and Savage Blade sets for Ninja. I plan to test basic SAM/DRK/DRG/WAR weapon skill sets sometime later, but manually adding in equipment dictionaries is tedious. This is technically the second of three parts of a Python3-based DPS simulator. It currently has everything it needs to be a full DPS simulator, including real-world time between attacks, TP return, and auto-attack/WS damage, but it seems appropriate to stop where I am for now.

I've tested the code's output against SimonSes' NIN Hybrid WS spreadsheet for Blade: Chi and find the difference to be within 0.5%-2% depending on the TP range and buffs used. For physical weapon skills, I tested the results against the Ninja DPS spreadsheet and found that Blade: Shun, Kamu, Hi, and Ku all agree within 5% or better, while Blade: Metsu shows 10% differences due to incorrect Aftermath: Attack+10% handling in the spreadsheet (see the spoiler below). This of course does not mean that I've done everything perfectly.

I've modified the code to automatically adjust a given gearset until it finds the "best" piece in each slot for a specified weapon skill. I then ran the code for 3 different buff states and 3 different TP ranges that I consider to be typical low/mid/high buffs for content in-game:

My earlier testing suggested that Hitaki is by far the best off-hand weapon for "damage varies with TP" weapon skills. However, it also only showed ~30-70% off-hand hit rate on the Apex Toad target that I'm simulating against (Evasion:1103~1163, Lv131-133), which would likely translate to significantly reduced TP gain and thus significantly reduced WS frequency. Because of this, I removed Hitaki and reran my simulations without it being an option. If you are able to make up for the significantly reduced accuracy and auto attack damage, then Hitaki should probably be your go-to for "damage varies with TP" weapon skills.

I did not test any Herculean gear since I believed it would be a waste of time given the accessibility of Nyame R10+ and the random nature of obtaining "good" augments behind multiple layers of RNG. I encourage you to input the sets I present here into the spreadsheets and see how your Herculean gear compares, though.

It should be noted that these sets are based on 50,000 single weapon skill simulations. Stats such as Skillchain Bonus (see Nyame) have no effect as a result until I finish the code to be a proper DPS simulator with auto-attacks, TP rounds, auto-WS, and SCs. Swapping some pieces listed in these sets with Nyame will lower weapon skill damage, but the skillchain bonus stat will likely result in larger overall damage.

The details of the code's algorithm are explained in a bit of detail below, but the process is likely very well known to most of you. For now, here is the list of "best average" gear sets for each buff state for a few of Ninja's available weapon skills at specific TP ranges. Each one contains an imgur link to the simulated distributions, which display the gear used and basic player stats for all tests run on that specific weapon skill. A representative image is also presented in each section. The list of all sets can also be found on my FFXIAH item sets page and the collection of all images can be found by following the imgur links in the comments of the sets themselves. The comments within each gear set should provide swaps for varying TP ranges, otherwise the sets shown in my item sets page are for 1000-1300 TP. Following the imgur link will show gear sets for all buffs and all TP ranges tested.

Blade: Chi

Blade: Hi

Blade: Kamu

Blade: Ku

Blade: Metsu

Blade: Shun

Blade: Ten
Savage Blade

Evisceration


Based on these sets, we can immediately create a short list of equipment for newer Ninja to prioritize and work towards for their weapon skill sets.

However, just because an item didn't show up here doesn't mean it doesn't hold a best-in-slot position in some situation. The 2021 Ninja Gearsets thread provides excellent gear to use for many weapon skills without considering Odyssey gear. Many of these sets are well within uncertainty of my "best average" sets presented here. Gear such as Ternion Dagger, Tatenashi, and Agony Jerkin that players previously found to be best in some situations may still win in special cases. For example, Ternion Dagger +1 may still be best in slot TP due to its low delay even if it didn't show up in any of the weapon skill sets.




Here I give a "brief," but relatively detailed, description of how the damage was calculated within the code. Let me know if there are any mistakes or inaccuracies that need to be corrected. I'm confident in the algorithm, but I may have done a poor job explaining in some places.




The list of gear tested in each slot is presented here:


I also performed quick tests for the new Crepsecular Knife and Crepsecular Pebble equipment from the Shinryu HTB.

Finally, since this post is already pretty long, I may as well link my official forum post from last year. This post details my requested Ninja job adjustments. Feel free to give it a like/comment.
https://forum.square-enix.com/ffxi/threads/57263-2020-2021-Ninja-Job-Adjustment-and-Feedback?s=66c8aaed6a12e3a576c9ee8f403e1174
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 Asura.Arico
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By Asura.Arico 2021-07-19 19:02:10
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This is so cool! Great job. This has been on my growing list of things to do.

Question -- I'm surprised Nagi didn't score higher on the hybrid/magical WS. From my parses it beats Heishi by a decent margin. Did you include the fact that Mythic AM3 procs on hybrid WS count as additional magical hits? Or was Heishi just better in the long run?
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By Pantafernando 2021-07-19 19:21:04
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Everyone using python nowaday.

Good thing im a forever bandwagoner
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By Asura.Arico 2021-07-19 20:06:23
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Pantafernando said: »
Everyone using python nowaday.

Good thing im a forever bandwagoner

Matlab?
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By Quetzalcoatl.Trulusia 2021-07-19 20:30:11
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Asura.Arico said: »
Pantafernando said: »
Everyone using python nowaday.

Good thing im a forever bandwagoner

Matlab?

Why would you insult that man like that?
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By Izanami 2021-07-19 20:59:17
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Asura.Arico said: »
This is so cool! Great job. This has been on my growing list of things to do.

Question -- I'm surprised Nagi didn't score higher on the hybrid/magical WS. From my parses it beats Heishi by a decent margin. Did you not include the fact that Mythic AM3 procs on hybrid WS count as additional magical hits?

Thanks for the comment.

For Hybrids: I'm calculating all physical hits, including multi-attack hits, before calculating the magical portion. So the magical portion does indirectly benefit from the Mythic AM3, but only because the magical portion is based on the physical portion. The magical portion is calculated using the physical portion's total damage, the FTP listed on BG-wiki plus any Fotia gear, and any magical stats such as Magic Damage and Magic Attack. I'm not applying the magical portion multiple times for multi-attack procs. I'm treating the magical portion as a single instance of bonus damage to an otherwise purely physical weapon skill.

Assuming the method above for calculating Hybrid damage is correct, then I think in these cases it comes down to TP Bonus being such a powerful stat for "damage varies with TP" weapon skills. The TP Bonus +500 and higher base damage provided by Heishi result in a larger average damage compared to the Mythic AM3 on Nagi.

If we compare the benefit of TP Bonus+500 vs the benefit of Mythic AM3 for the specific case of using the WS at 1150 TP for the set shown above with standard buffs (BRD+COR):
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 Asura.Arico
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By Asura.Arico 2021-07-19 22:51:13
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Great post. It's been a while since I've read anything discussing this, but I thought the working theory was that multi hit(or maybe just AM3?) applied additional magical hits, which was the only way to explain the damage spikes that were way higher than their theoretical maximum.
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By Ramuh.Austar 2021-07-19 23:45:08
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Izanami said: »
It should be noted that these sets are based on 50,000 single weapon skill simulations. Stats such as Skillchain Bonus (see Nyame) have no effect as a result until I finish the code to be a proper DPS simulator with auto-attacks, TP rounds, auto-WS, and SCs. Swapping some pieces listed in these sets with Nyame will lower weapon skill damage, but the skillchain bonus stat will likely result in larger overall damage.
I already have this done for most jobs (also in Python3) if you want to work on something together. I just don't run every single piece likes you since you get into billions of combinations with only a few pieces per slot.
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By Izanami 2021-07-20 12:56:18
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Asura.Arico said: »
[Great post. It's been a while since I've read anything discussing this, but I thought the working theory was that multi hit(or maybe just AM3?) applied additional magical hits, which was the only way to explain the damage spikes that were way higher than their theoretical maximum.

Assuming no contribution from physical damage, the magical portion of hybrid weapon skills uses the player's "Magic Damage" stat as a base. This means that even if you do 0 physical damage, you can still potentially hit some amount of magical damage assuming the enemy isn't also immune to magical damage. Luckily, the Lode Golem enemy in Ro'Maeve is immune to physical damage, allowing us to only test the magical portion of hybrid weapon skills. If mythic AM3 directly affects this magical portion in any way, then we should clearly see its effect after only a handful of weapon skills.

To keep the math simple, I took off my subjob and swapped into Store TP gear without any multi-attack. With mythic AM3 being my only source of multi-attack, the test is against the published rates of: OA3=20%, OA2=32%, and 48% without any AM3 proc. Since I don't have a 2nd character to give myself Tactician's Roll, I only performed 12 Blade: Chi with AM3 up. This is super low number statistics, but shouldn't matter much given that the OA3 and OA2 rates on mythic AM3 are 20% and 40%, respectively. Such large probabilities should frequently show up, even in low number statistics.

Out of 12 Blade: Chi, I observed damage=[249, 249, 274, 249, 249, 249, 249, 249, 274, 249, 249, 249], which is consistent with zero mythic AM3 procs on the magical portion of Blade: Chi. Coincidentally, I tested this on Earthsday just before the maintenance last night, so I received two day-procs for +10% (+25) damage.

Assuming a Binomial distribution, the chance of seeing exactly zero AM3 procs in 12 trials is 0.015%. This simple test suggests that mythic AM3 does not directly affect the magical portion of hybrid weapon skills.

If you have a COR mule for Tactician's Roll, I recommend you try this as well, but with N=50~100 instead of N=12.



Ramuh.Austar said: »
I already have this done for most jobs (also in Python3) if you want to work on something together. I just don't run every single piece likes you since you get into billions of combinations with only a few pieces per slot.[/spoiler]

In my case, I'm only checking one slot at a time, which is only 102 total pieces to check per iteration. This method is usually fine, but it will fail to find a set that requires two or more pieces together if they don't perform well individually. A way around this is to calculate the average damage of all combinations of all equipment being tested. However, with the gear that I'm using for physical weapon skills, there are 49.3 billion different combinations. I think even in the best-case scenario with CUDA-based GPU multiprocessing (that I have no real experience with), it would take about 3 hours to check all 49.3 billion sets per weapon skill, based on cProfile function timing measurements. I think it might be a good way to learn some GPU programming with Python3, but it's not worth the computation time to find out that the absolute best set is only 3% better than the sets I've already found with my flawed method.

Working together on a proper DPS simulator would be pretty fun since you already finished one for most jobs and mine is almost finished. I could probably learn something about Python3 or FFXI from the collaboration. I'll be too busy for at least the next week with classes/work so I can't work on it for a while, though.
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By Asura.Arico 2021-07-20 12:58:57
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Izanami said: »
Assuming a Binomial distribution, the chance of seeing exactly zero AM3 procs in 12 trials is 0.015%. This simple test suggests that mythic AM3 does not directly affect the magical portion of hybrid weapon skills.


Interesting. I guess this probably also means Doji is better than Koga for Jinpu.
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By SimonSes 2021-07-20 15:16:49
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Izanami said: »
This method is usually fine, but it will fail to find a set that requires two or more pieces together if they don't perform well individually.

I think it might actually fail a lot if stuff like WSD or PDL is involved. Diminishing returns on those will change things a lot, if you compare each piece with no diminishing returns at all, then it wont be accurate.
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By Ramuh.Austar 2021-07-20 15:36:11
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Izanami said: »
However, with the gear that I'm using for physical weapon skills, there are 49.3 billion different combinations. I think even in the best-case scenario with CUDA-based GPU multiprocessing (that I have no real experience with), it would take about 3 hours to check all 49.3 billion sets per weapon skill, based on cProfile function timing measurements. I think it might be a good way to learn some GPU programming with Python3, but it's not worth the computation time to find out that the absolute best set is only 3% better than the sets I've already found with my flawed method.
It won't be very feasible when you start adding in multiple sets. Add in factors like JA abilities that don't last forever but fights length is greater than the duration like MNK having Impetus and Footwork changes, or DRK with Last Resort changes. Add in even more WS sets if doing separate WS for skillchains or running two DD simultaneously to compare how they can do either individually or doing 2-4 step skillchains, you start getting into unreasonable numbers which is why I just do manual gear selections.
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By joemamma 2021-07-20 15:45:16
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Well according to my spreadsheet you are wrong.
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By Shiva.Thorny 2021-07-20 15:57:52
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Asura.Arico said: »
I thought the working theory was that multi hit(or maybe just AM3?) applied additional magical hits, which was the only way to explain the damage spikes that were way higher than their theoretical maximum

If(and I'm not substantiating this, only going off what you said) damage spikes higher than theoretical maximum occur, it's possible that AM3 is treated differently than a typical multi-attack on the server side and all the hits are being combined when determining the magic damage hit. This would both result in no effect on lode golems(as magic hit is based on physical hit, and physical hit is 0, higher physical hit doesn't matter) and allow for spikes to occur.
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By SimonSes 2021-07-20 17:12:20
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Shiva.Thorny said: »
Asura.Arico said: »
I thought the working theory was that multi hit(or maybe just AM3?) applied additional magical hits, which was the only way to explain the damage spikes that were way higher than their theoretical maximum

If(and I'm not substantiating this, only going off what you said) damage spikes higher than theoretical maximum occur, it's possible that AM3 is treated differently than a typical multi-attack on the server side and all the hits are being combined when determining the magic damage hit. This would both result in no effect on lode golems(as magic hit is based on physical hit, and physical hit is 0, higher physical hit doesn't matter) and allow for spikes to occur.

Im not saying Arico is lying, but I would need to see proofs of those "impossible" to occur damage spikes first, because with how hybrid works and how they respond to something like 2x TA proc, max damage potential will often be at 60-70k+ and many times you will faster reach 99k damage cap than theoretical cap on hybrids WS damage.
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By Asura.Arico 2021-07-20 18:10:11
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I'm purely basing it on a previous discussion on these boards from like 2017. I'll look for them. Pretty sure snaps was heavily involved. I'll look through his posts.


SimonSes said: »
Im not saying Arico is lying, but I would need to see proofs of those "impossible" to occur damage spikes first, because with how hybrid works and how they respond to something like 2x TA proc, max damage potential will often be at 60-70k+ and many times you will faster reach 99k damage cap than theoretical cap on hybrids WS damage.

What do you mean by that?
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By Izanami 2021-07-20 21:23:45
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SimonSes said: »
Izanami said: »
This method is usually fine, but it will fail to find a set that requires two or more pieces together if they don't perform well individually.

I think it might actually fail a lot if stuff like WSD or PDL is involved. Diminishing returns on those will change things a lot, if you compare each piece with no diminishing returns at all, then it wont be accurate.

I don't think I understand what you're getting at. Diminishing returns can not be a reason that the code finds the wrong piece of gear (or fails to find the correct piece of gear).

The only situation that the code does not handle properly will have the following logic:
  • Swapping to piece A is a downgrade

  • Swapping to piece B is a downgrade

  • Simultaneously swapping to pieces A and B is an upgrade of more than 0.5%


All other situations involve piece A and/or piece B being an upgrade, which the code handles properly.

These edge-case only come up with set bonuses, which provide extra stats for having more pieces equipped. Even in those cases, the extra stats gained are generally too weak to make up for the loss of damage for using a better piece. I should mention here that the code does handle set bonuses properly, but it doesn't go out of its way to build a set just for the bonuses.

The method I'm using has no trouble handling diminishing returns as long as it runs more than one iteration (checks every slot more than once). I run up to 20 iterations to deal with this, but the code has always converged within 3~5 iterations.
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By Asura.Arico 2021-07-20 21:38:50
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Izanami said: »
Swapping to piece A is a downgrade

Swapping to piece B is a downgrade

Simultaneously swapping to pieces A and B is an upgrade of more than 0.5%

Isn’t this a lot of situations?


The conventional wisdom I’ve always been told is you want a semi-even spread, because as you get more base stat WSD or MA become valuable etc and vice versa.
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By Izanami 2021-07-20 21:56:55
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Asura.Arico said: »
Izanami said: »
Swapping to piece A is a downgrade

Swapping to piece B is a downgrade

Simultaneously swapping to pieces A and B is an upgrade of more than 0.5%

Isn’t this a lot of situations?

It actually might occur more often than I gave it credit for in my last post. When I wrote the code I just intuitively assumed it could happen often.

I may have been overthinking things when I wrote that last post claiming that this situation only happens with set bonuses. I couldn't think of a single concrete example where swapping two pieces together is an upgrade, but swapping either one alone is a downgrade. The code properly handles one of them being an upgrade by itself leading into both together being a larger upgrade even if the other was a downgrade, but it can't handle two "bad" pieces being better than two other "good" pieces without extra stats from a set bonus.

If you can think of an example where this is the case then please send me the gear set and buffs used so I can confirm it in the spreadsheet. It's bugging me that I think I should be able to find such a situation, but I can't. It's the same feeling as having a song stuck in my head but I can't remember all the lyrics or the title.
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By Ramuh.Austar 2021-07-21 00:53:34
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First thing that comes to mind that way would be if piece A is more damage but gives a lower result due to something such as accuracy. Piece B would just be lower damage, but has more accuracy, so if wearing both you would cap accuracy and still have more damage.
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By Phoenix.Capuchin 2021-07-21 01:48:31
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Izanami said: »
I'm still convinced the developers accidentally swapped the modifiers for Jishnu's Radiance (80% DEX) and Blade: Hi (80% AGI) and refuse to admit it.

Heh, you and me both. That's really the only reasonable explanation!

Makes me think of the other one that drives me crazy knowing it just MUST be backwards - the Alexander and Odin battlefield songs. The name "Ragnarok" (the Alexander fight music) is obviously consistent with the Norse mythology themes of Odin and Einherjar; "Iron Colossus" (the Odin music) is a perfect description of Alexander, which is... an iron colossus? I am astounded that people have argued with me over that seemingly obvious mistake. I'll die on those two FFXI conspiracy theory hills.

But back on topic, really cool project - thanks for sharing!
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 Asura.Nilats
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By Asura.Nilats 2021-07-21 22:03:32
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Big python/automation fan love to see it applied to FFXI kudos to you. Are you planning on releasing your code?
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By Izanami 2021-07-23 16:35:59
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Ramuh.Austar said: »
First thing that comes to mind that way would be if piece A is more damage but gives a lower result due to something such as accuracy. Piece B would just be lower damage, but has more accuracy, so if wearing both you would cap accuracy and still have more damage.

This makes sense, thanks. The code is simulating against Apex Toads which have fairly low accuracy requirements so it's no surprise that I don't run into this issue without Hitaki equipped. Simulating against Lv137-139 Apex Bats instead may cause this issue to come up more frequently without the proper buffs. Although, a real situation wouldn't be micromanaging gear accuracy to such a degree when you could just swap a Minuet for a Madrigal anyway.

Asura.Nilats said: »
Big python/automation fan love to see it applied to FFXI kudos to you. Are you planning on releasing your code?

I'll likely upload the entire code to Github sometime later after I've made some updates to speed it up and make it user friendly. I've been incredibly busy with deadlines to meet recently and will remain busy for a while, so I'm not sure when I'll get around to this. Only one of the files needs changed to see significant performance improvements, though. I may upload the others pretty soon.
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By Asura.Saevel 2021-07-23 16:58:26
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Now they need to write a playbook that automatically deploys the code, analysis your gearswap and starts to update it optimize it accordingly.
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By SimonSes 2021-07-23 17:03:23
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Asura.Saevel said: »
Now they need to write a playbook that automatically deploys the code, analysis your gearswap and starts to update it optimize it accordingly.

It would also need to check available gear first :)
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By Bahamut.Wizardstick 2021-07-23 20:18:20
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I'm sure this is good info but the title of this post reminds me of that funny skit from CSI.

Especially because the post doesn't even talk about your python code.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkDD03yeLnU
necroskull Necro Bump Detected! [31 days between previous and next post]
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By Izanami 2021-08-23 13:46:01
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Thanks for waiting patiently. I've been incredibly busy since making the original post. Among other things, I've recently graduated, moved to a new apartment 400 miles away, and started a new job.

I've managed to make the changes that I felt were necessary before the code was worth publishing. They were incredibly easy changes to make, but I just didn't have the time and motivation to sit down and finalize them until yesterday. I don't plan on making large changes to the code anytime soon, but it's worth at least posting what I have so that those who requested the code can view it.

I'm not very familiar with GitHub, but I've put the code on my newly-created GitHub page (https://github.com/IzaKastra/wsdist). The format of the code is pretty embarrassing, but I definitely do not want to spend time reformatting everything in the near future.

The basic process to run the code is:
  • Check the gear.py file for equipment you want to test in each slot.

  • Modify the init.py file to choose the weapon skill, TP range, buffs, etc to be used.

  • Run the wsdist.py file to find the best sets.



List of changes since I made the original post:

The code makes use of the following Python libraries:

Again, this was originally just small project to learn more Python3 and about the FFXI damage formulae. If you're proficient in Python3 and notice some bad habits or significant inefficiencies in my code, please let me know so that I can learn a bit more by fixing them.

Feel free to comment here, message me on ffxiah, or /tell me in game if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, or if you find any typos or errors in my methods.

Bonus Ninja sets!
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 Asura.Bippin
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By Asura.Bippin 2021-08-23 13:51:17
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Ammo for Kasha is wrong FYI
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By Izanami 2021-08-23 14:24:38
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Asura.Bippin said: »
Ammo for Kasha is wrong FYI

Thanks for the note. I forgot that gear set comments don't appear when using [itemset] formatting.

I've added a comment stating that Ghastly Tathlum is a stand-in for Crepsecular Pebble since FFXIAH has not yet added the Shinryu gear to their gear sets and since they share the same item icon.

It should also be noted that Alber Strap won by default because I didn't check other grips. Not that I expect people to actually try Tachi: Kasha on NIN.
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By Asura.Aeonova 2021-08-23 15:06:25
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Remember the early days in the d00ns, island, and jungle while playing the game and weapon-skilling in the same gear you would TP in?

A simpler time.
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