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tidehunter

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  1. doesn't seem like a "bug" per-se, but the exposition may work better if she attacks you when you climb into her lair. i mean the buildup is Falanroed telling you to get her before she gets you for betrayal, and also you sensing her anger about your betrayal. otherwise where exactly did her soul go...the amulet disintegrating would seem to indicate she quickly reassumed control when she realized what you were up to.
  2. That's a good point about midday seeming the same as midnight. I remember in BG1 certain people would only show up for heists in dark alleys after dark, for example. I think even in Beregost the blacksmith closed up shop in the evenings. Contrast this with PoE where everything is static 25/7, and it only compounds the feeling of the absence of vibrancy. Must have been a design choice? Because it doesn't seem like it would be very taxing to implement these nuances, and others, such as having more generic people out and about in daytime. Some people have said they preferred the lower density of Baldur's Gate vs Athkatla. I loved both the approaches and can see the strengths of each. They each do different things well. I am not against the density in PoE as a hard and fast rule, but I think given that there are so few areas to begin with, the aggregate effect is that you feel you are in a very small place. In Athkatla, even though I can understand why some people find the bombardment of events overwhelming, I feel it was necessary to get the "big-city" feel across, given that it was in actual fact a smaller place than Baldur's Gate. You are not in fact seeing the whole city, the illusion is held up by virtue of you accessing several "hot spots" within the much larger whole. It would thus make sense that you are not getting a total random sampling; these accessible zones would be disproportionately "busy". In Baldur's Gate, things were more spread out. You had inn after inn, so it was okay if some of them didn't seem like they existed solely to wait upon your grand entrance like in BG2. I just pulled up the map to check exactly how many http://www.mninter.net/~jch/bg/bg-citymap.jpg now that actually looks and feels more like a place where people have a place to live. I guess the TL;DR is: if you are only modeling "pockets" of the city, I would have preferred higher content density. Otherwise, you need to scale up the environment IMO.
  3. First let me just say that PoE has been, so far, a stellar game, and this is mostly meant as constructive debate about potential improvements for the next iteration. I am just making my way through defiance bay for the first time, and I remember reading an old blog post about content density, especially in comparison to BG2. Now from what I remember, Athkatla was a bustling place, and this wasn't a turn off. You walk in to the Copper Coronet and you have so much stuff going on. You pick and choose what caters to your interests. Then there was BG1, where content was less dense, but you got the ENTIRE city, edges perfectly lined up from one zone to another. There were so many random little houses and corners which you could poke around in. I guess in PoE, the cramped wilderness areas had already foreshadowed the issue somewhat. I mean you go to the first wilderness area from the initial starting zone and you are basically confined to walk a very narrow and short path through it. You got inaccessible cliffs and a little grassy area and you are done. In itself it's not a big deal, but there are so few of the areas in total. Still, I was eagerly anticipating reaching the first major city to see what it would have in store. Now to give you a summary of the feel: I'm walking through the administrative centre, and there's just 3 buildings you can enter! And not much is going on in any one of them. I'm sure there are some tie-ins with future quest-specific reasons to visit, but the general pattern is each building has 1-3 people with actual names, and then a bunch of generic NPCs who all say the same rotation of phrases. Another example is the major inn at the city. There's barely anything of interest going on, and compare that with BG2's major inns. The net effect is when you go on a tour of the environment, it feels a bit dead, at least in comparison to the games I mentioned (and even Planescape). To sum it up, I would say that not only is the scale somewhat diminished (which is understandable given the development challenges), but the content could definitely be more densely packed in the environments that were actually fleshed out.
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