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J.E. Sawyer

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Everything posted by J.E. Sawyer

  1. I think there's a significant difference between being required to kill 100% of all ogres to get all XP from ogre killing and being required to kill 50% of all ogres. You can skip individual ogres, groups of ogres, named ogres on quests, and still gain all of the XP.
  2. Sorry if I wasn't clear, but bestiary entries are unlocked piecemeal over time, so you would be gaining progressive XP up to the point where you learn everything about that critter type.
  3. Yeah, we're talking about various other forms of XP including exploration, trap, and lock XP. We've also discussed XP connected to unlocking elements in the bestiary, which is sort of a limited-pool form of combat XP that eventually gets exhausted and doesn't require you to commit genocide to reach it. Also, kith (humanoid people) are not (and would not be) in the bestiary, and those are the characters most often associated with quests. The main motivation for our quest-only XP system came from observing how many people, both regular gamers and QA testers, completed certain types of ques
  4. I'm pretty easy-going about mechanics in the things that I play and it's not uncommon for me to implement mechanics I personally do not like if I feel they will improve the game overall. Most of the design choices I make focus on trying to produce a great experience for the audience, varied as they often are. In the process of working on RPGs over the past 15 years, I've observed a lot of things that create roadblocks in our games for subsets of people or structural flaws that make it difficult for people to really make a wide variety of viable characters. If I can fix those elements while
  5. We were trying to balance what I saw as competing desires among backers for per-character inventories, reduced hassle in picking up items over the long haul, and some nod toward realism/strategic decision making in personal carrying capacity. The last element has always seemed like the least important to me, but that is what the Stash restrictions were meant to accomplish. If the overwhelming vibe from people is that they don't like the Stash access restrictions, I am a-ok with removing them entirely. E: Except for in combat, of course.
  6. There are class-specific items that grant bonus spells and Talents that grant bonus spells. There are also class-specific items that grant bonus uses of class abilities for non-casters. Also consider that the majority of non-caster classes in most editions of A/D&D don't receive bonus ability uses for high stats (e.g. more Rage for barbarians, more Smites for paladins). In most cases, the stat in question is also one that's already key to the power of the class. More Smites for high Charisma when high Charisma already adds bonus to attack, more Rage for high Constitution when Consti
  7. For purposes of clarity, when I use the term "companion", I mean the OEI-written characters. When I use the term "adventurer", I mean the player-made characters. 1. You can stockpile companions and adventurers at your stronghold, but you can only have eight active (i.e., in existence) adventurers at any given time. 2. All companions and all adventurers can be at the stronghold at the same time. Their limits are independent of each otther. 3. Because none of the early game content is designed for six characters. You would roll over things extremely easily. We restrict it for the same
  8. I understand the desire, as I once played a pirate from the Nelanther Isles with Thug, Blooded, Improved Initiative, Quick Draw, Exotic Weapon Proficiency: Pistol, and four pistols at the ready. However, it is tricky to implement without adding new stand-alone weapons (i.e., two matching weapons as a combined single item). For murderous multishots, the blunderbuss is pretty good even if it isn't as cool-looking.
  9. I do and don't understand that perspective. I understand wanting a justification, but it's always seemed fitting to me. Many AoE spells/effects originate at a point and spread outward. Fireball is probably the most obvious example, but I tend to think of most effects that way. You're a super smarty, so as you extend the AoE outward, you are able to selectively shape it at the margins, where it terminates. You can't do it on the interior because that's the origin of the effect, where it's emanating from. That's always been my view of it, anyway.
  10. We have a bunch of people saying "yeah, AoE increase doesn't really seem that valuable", mostly because the marginal increase can be a liability. Allowing you to scale it down solves the liability problem, but also means that in those circumstances, you get literally no benefit from it at all. I still really don't get why this is such a spot of resistance when making the margins safe doesn't remove friendly fire, it makes INT valuable all the time instead of sometimes being a liability, and it doesn't require adding a UI layer on top of the system just to regulate AoE sizes.
  11. We'll look into that. We did already (today) shift the log over to use the primary color for characters in the log, which really helps locate different characters in it.
  12. I disagree. I don't think it's unintuitive at all. We currently have (for next BB update) highlighting for whom will be affected by an AoE and we will eventually have both the core AoE and marginal AoE increase displayed. This should make it very clear.
  13. Bigger AoEs seems pretty good for casters, IMO. Ultimately my vision is that PoE is a "gamist" game so I err on the side of solutions that produce what I see as better gameplay even if they don't fit perfectly from a simulationist perspective. I know some people have objected to it, but I still think that if the marginal increased area for AoEs were made foe-only for friend-or-foe spells (e.g. a Fireball that, in the expanded margin, only affects hostiles), it would immediately become much more valuable.
  14. I don't disagree, but if DEX affects Action Speed and PER affects Accuracy, putting Deflection on either would make them must-haves (IMO) and doesn't help out RES at all.
  15. I think we're getting close on this, but here's a small modification: instead of INT being +5 AoE Size/Duration per point and RES being +3 Concentration/+? Deflection per point, for general *~ feels ~* and broader applicability, set INT to +5 AoE Size/+? Deflection per point, and RES to +3 Concentration, +5% Duration per point. Concentration and longer durations seem to feel appropriate on RES. If you're a character who is not always in the line of fire, you're probably creating more status effects and could use longer durations. If you're a caster character, AoE size is great even if yo
  16. I don't think ciphers are well-balanced right now, anyway, so I'm not personally worried about that.
  17. Hey, guys. First of all, thank you for putting this together. It's great work. Your research is (obviously) extremely in-depth and well thought-out. This will sound like BS, but just before lunch, I wrote this chart on my board: And while waiting for my food, started reading your paper. I think we've reached largely similar conclusions, though honestly mine were based more on *~ gut feelin's ~* and less on deep statistics. The main conclusions we reached internally were: 1) Interrupt chance should be primarily attack/weapon-based with Accuracy (or rather, attack resolut
  18. Kaz has done most of our UI art and he grew up on the IE games, so he (and many other people on the team, honestly) has a lot of feedback for UI and general gameplay issues. Obsidian encourages everyone on the team to give feedback. Designers still give the majority of feedback but we get it from everyone.
  19. Only tangentially related, but we've already made changes to the Stamina (soon to be Endurance) and Health system that should a) make front-line characters (like fighters) more survivable in the long-term and b) make the system clearer overall. The previous system kept Stamina and Health values pretty much equal. Behind the scenes, as you took damage, a fraction of what went to Stamina would go to Health. That fraction was smaller for barbarians with Thick-Skinned, but otherwise it was the same for all classes. We now simply apply damage 1:1 to Stamina (Endurance) and Health, but Hea
  20. The detection circles are programmer art, though tonight Kaz came up with a great idea how to better represent stealth/detection that a) doesn't involve visible circles at all b) is still fully deterministic c) can scale infinitely with character level d) brings back some ambiguity and "play" to the system. I still need to talk with Tim and BMac about it, but I think it will work much better than what's in the game currently.
  21. There will probably be more updates in the official announcements, but at a much slower rate. BTW I talked to Tim et al. about invisibility as a state and selective scouting. Invisibility as a state is much easier to do and both Tim and Dave will likely work on it in the near future. Selective scouting has many more potential issues, so it's less likely to happen in short order.
  22. I can't give you a timeline on when more Talents we be implemented or when they will be rolled out to backers, but we are discussing them now. When it comes to Abilities and Talents and whether or not some Abilites could be selected vs. linearly progressed, I think that will ultimately depend on what that final pool of Abilities and Talents looks like. I'm pretty sure our data structure allows us to do it from a technical perspective, but it will likely come down to the total amount of available content for those classes.
  23. Asking is fine, and if you want you can start off a question by asking us to confirm/deny that we're incompetent dummies, but I don't think it's helpful. We implemented stealth as party-based because it seemed most likely that if the player had one character in scouting mode, there was little to no downside to having all characters in scouting mode. In my experience, if one member of the party, or in more complex circumstances, one AI enemy, is invisible and others are not, it can cause some measure of feedback confusion. The worst situations are when one or more characters are selective
  24. As a general rule, I think it would be more productive if people did not leap to conclusions about why an aspect of the game is or isn't a certain way. If you want to ask, just ask.
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