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  1. #1
    TSwiftie
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    Mob Spawning Mechanics (Requesting Data!)

    Unfortunately I don't have any information to present. Instead I'm starting this thread so that others can post data and we can compile the information. Since I'm starting the thread, I'll try to keep updating the OP with info.

    As a preface, the very nature of this thread should be technical and requires people to be using third party programs to view data in active memory (and the DAT lists for mobs for each zone.

  2. #2
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    I assume you want to know PH ID's and such? I know a couple ID's off the top of my head from some trials, but how would I go about finding others? For NM's whose Widescan PH is known I can always find that particular mob on widescan and record its ID with apdar. But I'm mostly asking for NM's whose widescan PH isn't known. Something like "Kill this on ID repeatedly and if it doesn't pop after a set time move to the next one?" I only worry with lotto pops I'll just be unlucky, it'll pop on a second mob and I'll think it's just that one, while it's in fact both of them.

  3. #3
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    Popping mechanics? What determines where and when a mob pops?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fereydoon View Post
    I assume you want to know PH ID's and such? I know a couple ID's off the top of my head from some trials, but how would I go about finding others? For NM's whose Widescan PH is known I can always find that particular mob on widescan and record its ID with apdar. But I'm mostly asking for NM's whose widescan PH isn't known. Something like "Kill this on ID repeatedly and if it doesn't pop after a set time move to the next one?" I only worry with lotto pops I'll just be unlucky, it'll pop on a second mob and I'll think it's just that one, while it's in fact both of them.
    Use a hex editor to modify the zone .dat file to replace names for mobs. I've done this several times to lock down place holders. "Name of mob (0 - n)" then when NM pops note which mob is missing. The mob ordering in the .dat file is the order in which it appears in widescan. I don't even bother with widescan anymore unless the NM can spawn in a huge area and instead just rename the mob "Leaping Lizzy PH." Specific zone .dat files can be found using POLutils.

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    Permit me to lay out a framework for this, because I've been considering it for a bit.

    First, how you find PHs:
    Spoiler: show
    You need two third party programs other than Windower to make this easiest. APRadar v2 (Iseedeadpeople to unlock) and POLUtils (from Pebbles). The basic idea is, you look at the .dats using the POLUtils NPC renamer, then you change the name of probable PHs. You track what you're killing and what's popping, and you check what's dead as a backup using Radar.

    For instance, I want to track down Sea Hog (a Pugil in SSG) and I see a bunch of Razorjaw Pugils around his name in the .dats. I rename them "Razorjaw Pugil1" "Razorjaw Pugil2" etc. by opening the POLUtils NPC Renamer, going to Sea Serpent's Grotto, and clicking on/editing their names. Then I go to "Show Changes" and "Write Pending Changes" to complete the transaction. If I'm already in the zone I editted, I have to log out and back in to reset my zone data. After that, both the game and APradar will use the updated names.

    From there, I generally look to see the status of NPCs in the area (0% HP on APRadar is a big flag) and check out the potential PHs I named. Note the ones that are dead, kill them all. Watch them respawn. Note the ones that are dead now (and if it changed) and kill them all again until you've gotten every mob to spawn at least once. When the NM spawns, look for the 0% HP mobs, In general, those are your PHs. There are exceptions, which I can explain later.


    Formatting:
    The best format for this is Pebble's POLUtil's .xml format. Once you're sure what the PHs are using the above method, rename the PHs to their original name with a ! on the end. Then go to "Show Changes" and right click the non-PHs. Do "Revert Changes" on those. "Write Changes" after that, then highlight the PHs you just found and right click, choosing "Save Selected Changes..." This will make an xml document with the .dat ID number of the monster and what you renamed it to. I rename all PHs to the normal name with a ! on the end, because it's unobtrusive, very easy to spot on Widescan, and just makes you look excitable if you have a macro with <t> in it. Similarly, if I'm not sure whether something is a PH or not (maybe it was a probable PH but I never saw it spawn) I'll tag it with a ?. Again, unobtrusive, easy to spot on widescan, and just makes you look a little inquisitive.

    So, in the previous example "Razorjaw Pugil1" and "Razorjaw Pugil3" both ended up being PHs. I rename them to "Razorjaw Pugil!" and Export the .xml. I end up with this:
    Code:
    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
    <ffxi-npc-name-changeset>
      <name-change id="17498418" old="Razorjaw Pugil" new="Razorjaw Pugil!" />
      <name-change id="17498424" old="Razorjaw Pugil" new="Razorjaw Pugil!" />
    </ffxi-npc-name-changeset>
    The relevant lines are the two where you can see the old NPC being renamed. If you copy those lines into [ code ] [ / code ] tags on these forums, people can copy and paste them into their own changeset .xml document between the header and the footer and apply it to their own game. This is the easiest and simplest way to transmit this data. Ideally there will also be some kind of mega compilation of these that contains information on every lotto NM in the game. I'm not sure I want to take personal responsibility for that, but I'll doubtlessly keep a pretty up to date version.

    This isn't an entirely random example by the way. I have four southern pearls to sell that I got by killing one of those two monsters every 16 minutes behind the Mythril Beastcoin door in SSG. With enough ingenuity, I'm sure we can figure out every lotto NM's PH. So far I've run into 0 cases where there is actually more than one placeholder up at once.

  5. #5
    TSwiftie
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    One tool I've used a lot is pebbles: http://code.google.com/p/polutils/
    It allows you to see all the mobs and their ID, and includes an easy way to edit the mob names.

    In particular I'm looking for information on how various spawning mechanics work. Everything from basic mobs outside a starter town, to NMs used in magian quests, to HNMs. It seems there's a handful of different systems. For example, Chary, Leaping Lizzy, and Argus all have completely different spawning mechanics.

    I think even information about mobs that deviate from the 5min/16min rules, how VNM respawn, and Abyssea mob's spawn mechanics would be nice to have documented.

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    Well, I'll lay out what I'll call a "Typical Lottery NM"

    Typical Lottery NM:
    When the Placeholder is killed, the Notorious Monster spawns with a certain probability at the time when the Placeholder would normally respawn. It's unproven at this time, but it seems the probability of PH replacing is 0 for most "Typical Lottery NMs" for a certain period of time after they are killed, and then increases to a flat rate after the "dead time." So, after being killed, a 1-hour Typical Lottery NM has one hour of inactivity followed by that Notorious Monster's typical replacement rate.

    The odds of a Notorious Monster replacing a placeholder seem to be proportional to the Placeholder repop time, to an extent. So outdoor NMs (5 minute PH repop time) have a lower probability of replacing their Placeholder than indoor NMs (~16 minute PH repop time). Just offhand, I'd say the probability is approximately 10% for outside and 30% for inside. So on average you kill the PH about 10 times (~an hour after window opens) outside and ~3-4 times (~an hour after window opens) for inside.

    It is my experience that the vast majority of "Lottery NMs" work this way, or off some simple variant of this.

    In technical terms, this would be:
    When the Notorious Monster is spawned, the only monster you're required to kill to make him spawn again (the placeholder) is seen at 0% HP on AP Radar.

    Common Variant: Multiple Placeholders
    Some Notorious Monsters (really quite a few of them) actually depend on the death of multiple monsters that have different IDs in the .dats.

    A common example that most people are familiar with is Megalobugard. If you look at Megalobugard's spawn pattern in the .dats, you'll see that the "2, 3, 2, 1, 2" pattern people quote so often is actually entirely incorrect. Based on the .dats, the group sizes are "3, 4, 2, 3, 2", with Megalobugard appearing in the list below the second group of 3. The Wide Scan experience in game ("2, 3, 2, 1, 2") is the pattern with placeholders removed. True to FFXI lore, however, Megalobugard's PH is the "bottom of whichever group has an extra one." It turns out that there are four possible PHs in the .dats, one in each of the first two groups and two in the fourth group.

    (Un?)Common Variant: Placeholder continues spawning with NM
    Some Notorious Monsters (not very many, I think) have placeholders that continue to spawn even when the Notorious Monster is up. Not killing anything obviously doesn't pop these monsters, and everything you kill always respawns.

    A good, simple example of this is Worr the Clawfisted. There are four Sahagins in the .dats for his room. Two Marsh, 1 Bog, and 1 Swamp. One Marsh and the Bog/Swamp Sahagins are all mutually exclusive (a set of three where only one can spawn), while the second Marsh Sahagin spawns all the time. Worr is a Lottery spawn of the Marsh Sahagin that does not share his pop spot, but he doesn't synchronize his spawn time with the Marsh Sahagin and the Marsh Sahagin continues to spawn as normal and on schedule. So far I have observed 13 and 15 minute spawn times from PH (16 minute) ToD.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirschy View Post
    One tool I've used a lot is pebbles: http://code.google.com/p/polutils/
    It allows you to see all the mobs and their ID, and includes an easy way to edit the mob names.

    In particular I'm looking for information on how various spawning mechanics work. Everything from basic mobs outside a starter town, to NMs used in magian quests, to HNMs. It seems there's a handful of different systems. For example, Chary, Leaping Lizzy, and Argus all have completely different spawning mechanics.

    I think even information about mobs that deviate from the 5min/16min rules, how VNM respawn, and Abyssea mob's spawn mechanics would be nice to have documented.
    Heres some info about VNMs, the timestamped message in the log and the repop time from a repop scanning program I wrote. If you have any ideas on how to collect data on this I can write something up.

    These are abyssea VNMs.

    [19:35:54]Rerisen defeats the Chione.
    [19:47:15](Rerisen) vnm pop

    [19:51:27]Rerisen defeats the Chione.
    [20:02:43](Rerisen) vnm pop

    [20:44:30]Rerisen defeats the Chione.
    [20:57:44](Synergy) vnm pop

    -----------------------

    This is the only normal VNM (outside abyssea) that I scanned for repop on.

    [20:31:14]Headshot defeats Jyeshtha.
    [21:31:19](Synergy) scp repop

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mafai View Post
    Heres some info about VNMs, the timestamped message in the log and the repop time from a repop scanning program I wrote. If you have any ideas on how to collect data on this I can write something up.

    These are abyssea VNMs.

    [19:35:54]Rerisen defeats the Chione.
    [19:47:15](Rerisen) vnm pop

    [19:51:27]Rerisen defeats the Chione.
    [20:02:43](Rerisen) vnm pop

    [20:44:30]Rerisen defeats the Chione.
    [20:57:44](Synergy) vnm pop

    -----------------------

    This is the only normal VNM (outside abyssea) that I scanned for repop on.

    [20:31:14]Headshot defeats Jyeshtha.
    [21:31:19](Synergy) scp repop
    So 11 minute repop, 11 minute repop, 13 minute repop, and then one 10 minute repop outside Abyssea. If you accept the idea of ~30 second windows (~:15 and ~:44 in your upper sample), anyway.

  9. #9
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    In doing alot of lottery NMs for magian trials, I find alot of them after death, their PH wont respawn at the normal time. Say PH respawn time is typical 5 minutes, kill the NM and the PH wont respawn for 10, 15, even 20 minutes for some.

    Also, I don't really buy into the 1 hour respawn time. I have had several respawn faster than that where wiki says its 1 hour or 2 hour respawn. Personally I think most people just accept the common believe that the respawn time is minimum 1 hour and stop killing PHs.

    No specific data, just my observations from doing several magian trials.

  10. #10
    Cerberus
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sprint View Post
    In doing alot of lottery NMs for magian trials, I find alot of them after death, their PH wont respawn at the normal time. Say PH respawn time is typical 5 minutes, kill the NM and the PH wont respawn for 10, 15, even 20 minutes for some.

    Also, I don't really buy into the 1 hour respawn time. I have had several respawn faster than that where wiki says its 1 hour or 2 hour respawn. Personally I think most people just accept the common believe that the respawn time is minimum 1 hour and stop killing PHs.

    No specific data, just my observations from doing several magian trials.
    I've had the same kind of thoughts about minimum timers that are greater than an hour for non-hnm things. I think it was orctrap where wiki said some ridiculous number for minimum repop time, and I killed PH on the one hour mark and it popped next cycle. Makes me wonder if people just accept the rough estimations and then don't try before then, leading to never finding evidence to the contrary (along with bad luck for people who might try now and then) on some of the stranger reported repop times.

  11. #11
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    Anyone who ever camped lizzy before or after R/E change knows that you can see lizzy repop in less than 5 minutes. I have seen over the years with some NM that there are definitely some very different spawn mechanics other than the basic ones that have been recognized over the years.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Byrthnoth View Post
    and then one 10 minute repop outside Abyssea.
    ? that Jyeshtha repop is 1 hour.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Siatdiat View Post
    Anyone who ever camped lizzy before or after R/E change knows that you can see lizzy repop in less than 5 minutes. I have seen over the years with some NM that there are definitely some very different spawn mechanics other than the basic ones that have been recognized over the years.
    This NM is a special exception. There are actually 2 Leaping Lizard's in the mob array. So possibly they are both 1 hour respawns, and by coincidence they can spawn pretty close (but can they be up at the same time?)

    Quote Originally Posted by Byrthnoth View Post
    So 11 minute repop, 11 minute repop, 13 minute repop, and then one 10 minute repop outside Abyssea. If you accept the idea of ~30 second windows (~:15 and ~:44 in your upper sample), anyway.
    You also need to keep in mind the actual ToD is based on the mob fully dying (I can't think of a better way to say it). This includes death animation to fade of name, or the changing of a certain value of memory to say the mob is dead. The timestamp is just the best I could do since I was just using my log for data.

  14. #14
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    Leaping Lizzy is the only NM I can think of that is genuinely a Lotto off two monsters that can both be up at once, and it is actually a weirder system than that. I have not looked at it using these tools yet though. Other potential examples are the Fuma and Okote nms post-patch.
    I definitely think that we don't have the minimum respawn time nailed down on many NMs, but I also doubt I will be the one to find it. I don't think it is something as simple as a generic 1 hour for lottos though. Think of Charybdis.

    Also, is it that depop animations are included, or that monsters can only depop once every 30 seconds too?

    Also, lol morning math. Yeah that VNM was 1 hour.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Byrthnoth View Post
    Also, is it that depop animations are included, or that monsters can only depop once every 30 seconds too?
    You know I never thought of it that way. But during my days of king camping, I never recall myself thinking "damn is this name ever gonna fade?" while waiting for the name to fade to /clock. And I know I would have thought that if I had to wait 29 seconds for the name to fade (in the chance that it died 1 second after the 30 second depop time). It would have had to happen at least once in my many camps.

    I am at work now, otherwise I would test. This is an easy thing to check.

  16. #16
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    for VNM, at least inside abyssea, they follow the 30 second windows (the 30 second ticks that mobs pop on)
    For example, when a T2 is killed, assuming it is a 10-15 minute window which I am pretty sure they are, the "time of death" is when the mob's HP reaches 0. The only NMs that I can think of that had the "time of death" be when the mobs' names disappear are HNMs. So when a T2 VNM dies, the next time it will pop is 10-15 minutes (with 30 second intervals) following the first 30 second tick after the mob's death. This goes for most, if not all NMs that have 10-15 minute windows in abyssea. As for T3, I believe they are 15-20 minutes.

  17. #17
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    Okay, so I decided to focus on Worr the Clawfisted because he was the easiest one to control for. I ended up killing both sahagins in the room and ran around killing the other PHs behind the Mythril door. I came back quickly, probably <10 minutes, and neither of his PHs had respawned yet . . . but he was sitting there up.

    51:07 Marsh Sahagin (the lonely one) dies
    51:56 Bog Sahagin (one of the three-set) dies
    01:13 I find Worr up
    06:30 to 08ish, I find both Sahagins in his room have respawned, while I was pulling Sea Hog's PH (drat!).

    There are four other people in SSG, two of whom are camping Seww the Squidlimbed and one THF/DNC doing something or other that I haven't seen. All the PHs were up and waiting for me, including Sea Hog's. I am pretty sure but not entirely sure that I've popped this NM by only killing one of the two Sahagin before. There's something else at work here, and I'm not sure what.

    Because his room is smaller than Pahh's, I'd like to hammer this guy's spawn conditions down first.


    Edit: Okay, I lied
    I was working on both. I killed Pahh's supposed PH (only Sahagin I killed) at 15:58, then rested and got a crab that I killed. Pahh was up at 32:13 when I checked, and the supposed PH respawned shortly after (but definitely after). So it looks like these guys are potentially triggered by killing a certain monster, but don't replace or necessarily pop on the same schedule as their placeholders.

  18. #18
    Cerberus
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    A common technique which is true to every single monster and NM in FFXI (minus kings yo) is the 30 second window. I'm surprised no one has mentioned it other than in passing by Byr. Every single zone goes by a timer, which I would assume is from when the zone server came online. Monsters will only every spawn on :00 or :30 every minute on THE ZONES TIMER. I have not found a single monster which has not followed this. To find the start time, just wait around until you see something pop, then start a timer. Once it's going, you'll know when things will pop (if your timer is on hh:mm:00 or hh:mm:30). I've used this many times to camp NMs and it has always worked. If you use it with other map viewing tools (such as ApRadar) then you can know the exact location it pops as well and give you an edge when claiming. This is why when you AoE monsters down, often a large amount of them will all repop at once.

    If you wish to obtain exact repop timers for monsters/NMs, I suggest you base it off the 30 second 'tick' system rather than say "oh well it's about ~5min repops". Monsters appear to have a few ticks leeway, +-1 or +-2 depending. A good system would be to say for example "Lesser colibri have a repop time of 5min +-1 tick (so can pop at 4:30 5:00 or 5:30). I have noticed no pattern to when the monster pops; seems random which tick it pops on.

    EDIT: Should also mention that I've seen on two occasions where a 10min respawn NM has popped on the 10min mark FROM THE POINT OF DEATH, rather than the body disappearing (which to me makes more sense). For example, NM dies (xxx defeats NM) at 01:01:30. Body disappears at 01:01:35. NM repops at 01:01:30. Of course, the odds of you syncing the death in time with the repop tick timer is quite rare, so more often than not people kill an NM, wait 10min, but then the next pop tick is still 25 seconds away or whatever, so the first chance it can pop is actually 10mins and 25secs.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kegsay View Post
    A common technique which is true to every single monster and NM in FFXI is the 30 second window.
    Can't say I agree with this, as you disagreed in your edit. Also this does not apply to kings, which are always exactly 30 minute windows on the exact second of name fade.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mafai View Post
    Can't say I agree with this, as you disagreed in your edit. Also this does not apply to kings, which are always exactly 30 minute windows on the exact second of name fade.
    Okay, so king's are an exception which I assumed most people would know about. Regardless, they still follow a window system rather than any random time.

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