I've noticed that I cannot consistently anticipate when my heroes are capable of inflicting meaningful amounts of damage upon potential opponents. I suspect my rough knowledge of how combat damage is computed either is inaccurate or is too incomplete. I am hoping someone more experienced and/or knowledgable can help.
1. My current understanding is that attacks do a base amount of damage determined by the attack and its level, and that this damage is then modified by some function of the attacking character's attack statistic and the defending character's defense score. But roughly, what is this function?
2. My current understanding is that attack, defense, and skill are increased by 12.5% for each star, and can be significantly increased by the presence of appropriate runes. Are they also increased by level, or does level only affect health and base damage? Does ascending a character only impact available abilities, or does it affect stats?
3. Several stats are unclear. Does a crit multiplier multiply attack or damage? What does damage penetration penetrate? What does damage reduction reduce? What does resistance (e.g. fire resistance) resist? In general which is more useful, 10% damage reduction or 10% increase in defense stat and why? Why, when characters have a maximum dodge chance of 25%, do certain opponents (e.g. shadowblade) seem to dodge more like 3 times in 4?
4. Combat damage is clearly impacted by character stats, stat modifiers, damage reduction and damage penetration, elemental advantages, and buffs to these characteristics. Have I missed anything?
5. How accurate is the AI assignment of team power and rune power? I have found team power to be a virtually useless stat, while total rune power usually gives me a good guess of when opponents are too tough. However, I have often found that characters of lower levels and equivalent character stars with roughly equivalent rune power to mine take virtually no damage from my characters, while inflicting massive damage upon mine. Given I have concentrated rune statistics on attack and defense with most of the rest on skill, how is this possible? I can understand that 1000 added defense might render my 500 added attack ineffectual, but if the runes are balanced, my +500 defence should render an opponents +0 attack impotent. So how am I dominated on both attack and defense?
I appreciate any clarification anyone can offer.