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Difficulty Level and Health and Damage (DXHR)

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This article borrows from Absolute Steve's great DX3 FAQ

Health and Damage Edit

Jensen's health is fixed at 100 points at Normal Difficulty. This can be increased up to 200 using Painkillers (25 points), Hypostims (50 points), and drinks. Anything over 100 is temporary and lost if you are injured. If Jensen's health is below 100, Hypostims and Painkillers first bring it to 100, then add their 25 or 50 points. Drinks do not bring health to 100 first:

Health Drink
10Spirits or Wine
15Slum Dog (Hive)
25Whiskey or Shanghai Gut Punch (Hive)
30Golden Phoenix Sling (Hive)

At Normal Difficulty, his health regenerates 4 points per second, after a delay (without further injury) of 6.5 seconds. Thus, it would take him 31 seconds to recover from 1 hitpoint to 100 HPs (6.5 + 99/4).

Enemies also regenerate health. At Normal difficulty, they recover 1 HP/s after a delay of 10 s. So it would take them 109 seconds (almost 2 minutes) to recover from 1 HP to 100.

Difficulty Level Edit

Difficulty level affects you and enemies as follows:

Difficulty Level # 1 2 3
CalledTell Me A StoryGive Me A ChallengeGive Me Deus Ex
JensenHealth150 HP100 HP75 HP
Regen4.6 HP/s (115%)4.0 HP/s (100%)3.4 HP/s (85%)
Delay4.9 s (75%)6.5 s (100%)7.5 s (115%)
Regen 9926.4 s31.3 s36.6 s
Regen1.5 HP/s (150%)1.0 HP/s (100%)0.8 HP/s (75%)
Delay7.5 s (75%)10.0 s (100%)12.5 s (125%)
Regen 9973.5 s109.0 s144.5 s

"Regen 99" is the time it takes to go from 1 Hitpoint to 100 HPs.

The game will still show you as having 100 base health at each difficulty level, with a max of 200, but the underlying number of hitpoints represented by that number have changed. Think of your in-game health bar as "percent health" relative to the hitpoints shown above.

The various enemies have differing numbers of hitpoints, depending on their size (e.g. unarmored civilian versus ogre), difficulty level (as shown above), and whether it is a head shot or body shot.

After you and enemies, there are only a few other objects that can be destroyed:

Object Difficulty Level
Cardboard boxes and wooden crates214263
Breakable walls 100
Doors 150

Difficulty Level does not seem to affect the damage from weapons; it only changes how much health (hitpoints) you or enemies have. Since you have less health and enemies have more health at higher difficulty, you still die easier and they are still harder to kill, despite the "fixed" weapon damage.

For example, the machine pistol (MP) with no damage upgrade (D+0) does 1.75 damage with each round, and the body of a Boxguard has 380 HPs at Normal difficulty:

Difficulty Level Enemy Health BoxGuard Body MP Rounds to Kill
175%285 HPs163
2100%380 HPs218
3125%475 HPs272

Conversely, a Door, which has 150 HPs at all difficulty levels, always needs 86 MP D+0 rounds to kill (150/1.75).

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