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Everything posted by Aristes

  1. I disagree with you, Vol. Elves, Dwarves, and Hobbits are all just humans of different shapes and sizes. For them to be truly alien would have required their motives to be inscrutable and quite difficult for the author to convey. There's no real alieness with these "demi" humans. That's why folks like Bioware, Obsidian, and other use them, according to Sawyer, as proxies for various human societies. The caste system isn't alien. The shire isn't alien. Hell, the shire isn't even foreign to Tolkien. The irony is that the most alien of all of the races in Tolkien are the orcs. Same goes for the darkspawn. It's difficult to find entire human societies whose sole goal is to kill other folks without real regard to capturing land or riches. Essentially, orcs and darkspawn as an entire race kill for the fun of killing. It doesn't even appear to be sport. At least that's my take. As far as Zhevran goes, I truly forgot he was an elf. Weird. I guess I just never adventure with him.
  2. I gave Morrigan some sort of which I'd recalled her describing to me some time earlier. That gave me 20 points. She's over 90 in Aristes love right now. Alistair is at 100, Leliana is over 90, and Wynne is over 85. I could just dump the odds and ends on Wynne and she'd be over 90 also. It's great for getting those lurve bonuses, which are quite nice. Of course, Morrigan is still a double barreled bitch to the other members. Except the dog. She has a soft spot in her heart for the dog. No one comes set up as a tank except Alistair in this game. Oghren and Sten are DPS warriors. The dog is pretty buff, but he only has something like 8 total abilities. I suppose, you could theoretically try something fancy with Morrigan's bear shape or something. I dunno. I could probably forget casting and just go all arcane warrior armor to the max with my main. She's already carrying an arcane warrior sword and a big assed shield. I'd rather keep Alistair as a tank and have the PC lay down the smack on bad guys really. Anyhow, it seems clear that Bio really really wanted the player to keep Alistair around. Him and . lol Is it my imagination, or is there no elf JNPC?
  3. Thanks, guys, I ran back to Redcliffe only to realize that I had had the option without realizing it. Alistair is a damned good tank now. Those Templar abilities come in right handy sometimes, especially against rabid spell casters. Still, even against the rank and file they're good. I'm looking forward to my rogue run. I usually don't go in for warriors, but it seems to me that they have enough of a talent spread to be interesting. We shall see.
  4. I think I'll stick to hard. I don't see any particular reason to go to Nightmare other than bragging rights, and I don't tend to care about that. I think I must be getting close to the end game right now and I've been pretty happy with the difficulty. It's definitely possible to get killed in the game. I'll be the diplomat and say that I think both the bandits in Denerim and SPOILER were tough fights on hard, but I was never really irritated. The hardest crit path fight I've had was against the beastie in the Brecilian Forest until some of you glorious bastards put me on to the traps. Once I knew what was what, that fight wasn't so hard. Things got progressively easier after that, although I did have to save a few big Forest battles until later. Those have been my hardest in the game so far and they weren't crit path. I don't have any of the DLC, including one that I'm apparently supposed to have from my STEAM purchase. I should look it up, but I don't really care all that much about DLC goodies. I might purchase mods that look like they have some gameplay meat on them, however.
  5. I'm more and more disappointed by Obama, but I think his acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace prize was long overdue. I'm tired of his hat in hand bowing attitude, and this was a welcome change. In fact, while I doubt there's any chance in hell that I'll vote for him in any election, he went a long way to overcome some of the animosity that I've had for him in the months since he took office, at which point I was actually neutral. Of course, I think the domestic programs he either supports or is pushing will be the ruination of our country. The health care overhaul didn't actually worry me until this disasterous plan for lowering the age for medicare by an entire decade. ...And before someone insults themselves by saying that the move doesn't include all people 55 and over, just stop. Programs of this ilk start out with any number of restrictions and end up encompassing larger and larger portions of the population. Hell, the biggie is the age restriction and congress is making noise about reducing or removing that long term. The big excuse for this overhaul is that the United States spends too much on Healthcare as a % of GDP. These programs fail to do anything about even that situation. If the Dems want single payer universal health care, restructure the entire system. Don't bankrupt us by tinkering with these crazy assed schemes. Honest to goodness, my conspiracy therorist friends are making more and more sense to me.
  6. I totally agree. Honest to goodness, it would have been something different at least. It just seems to me that writers and designers have this strange game where they're all trying to see how fast they can reduce dwarves and elves to their most pathetic state. I would much rather have had feral, revenge-driven psycho barbarians whose areas other civilized races fear and despise on par with the Blight. Then it would really be a feat for the PC to get them to join forces with the civilized nations. Not yet another *yawn* race in decline scenario, but pointy-eared, pretty faced zergs. Anything other than the scenario in the game. For some reason, I don't mind the dwarven scenario. That's actually pretty cool. Of course, this just balances out Bethesda, who hate the dwarves with the same intensity that Bio seems to hate the elves.
  7. I summoned her in the middle of the place, since that was all I was there to do at that point and I want room to get party members away from her depending on where she landed. Caster need some space, after all. She swooped down initially and stood at the bottom of the stairs leading up to the ruins and never lifted off again. I guess you could say that I used the taunt+force field trick, but I didn't use forcefield until about halfway to the battle and I only used it a total of two, maybe three times between the two mages who can cast it. Otherwise, the tank just quaffed healing pots and the mages healed and or smote as the situation demanded. I'm almost tempted to take an earlier save and see if it happens differently in some other setup, although I don't know why I wouldn't have Alistair tank since that's his purpose in the party. The dragon would probably have knocked someone out or even wiped the party if she could pick off the mages in a row. Alistair wasn't going to win that battle solo. Anyhow, it's probably not even worth it to get Ranger for Leliana at this point. I don't know what all the ranger class does, but what I'm getting from you guys is that it entails summoning pets who will only frustrate me by running into AoE spells. However, I'm positive that I want Alistair to try the Champion class. The description seems to indicate it's a great one for a tank. Plus, Anyone know where I can get the training for him? I can't see why anyone would want to spend one extra second among the elves. I'm playing one now and I even despise myself for it.
  8. I only skimmed, but I can say that I disagree with Enoch. Morrigan isn't a petulant child. She's a double barreled bitch. You know, I don't mind Morrigan as long as she confines herself to talking to me in camp or talking to the dog in party. If she opens her mouth otherwise, I despise her. In the modern sense. The elves I despise in the classical sense. If Bioware truly hates the elves as much as it seems, they should just off their pointy eared asses in the story line and be done with it. I've never seen a sadder more pathetic group of people in my life. I simply cannot fathom why Bioware bothered having them in the story. They're not mystical. They're not romantic. They're not even really nomadic. They're a stationary bunch of whining pathetic losers. They don't even serve as the under class proxy Bioware so clearly luuurves in their games. What a complete waste. Back to Morrigan. I've been avoiding the arguments about her, but all's I can say is that if she decides to test me, I'm putting her on her back faster than a two bit whore in a twelve dollar whore house. At this point, she doesn't do anything that Wynne and the PC can't do anyhow. In other news, the PC slept with Alistair. It's simple. She might love the guy. Me? I'm merely mercenary. It appears the PC did a little favor for him, so he now has more health and can do a greater service for her. ...And I don't mean in bed. I hear a lot about other tanks, but Alistair is the best one I have. His Templar abilities don't hurt either. Judging from the descriptions, I think I'd like to make him a Champion also. I used to hate the romances, but since they actually give me something tangible in-game (get your minds out of the gutter), I'm perfectly happy to exploit them. It was a real race to see whether the PC would end up in bed with Alistair or Leliana. Made no difference to me, but I do prefer to give Alistair the extra buff. I don't really need Leliana in the party, but Alistair is my only solid tank. For some reason, the dog doesn't seem to hold aggro as well, although I do like the howl and charge quite a bit. Plus, I don't see the dog as a viable romance. *shrug* So far, I've done everything I could find in Redcliffe, Denerim, the Tower, and the Brecilian Forest. I've So now I'm in the Dwarven area poking around. I don't like going into new areas, but I do like being in them after a while. I think it's that I'm impatient about finding all the quest givers and whatnot. I actually like that a lot of folks either give you floating overhead text or are simply not interactable. Well, enough rambling for now, but I think it's a good sign that I'm up at 2:30pm playing the game.
  9. *ignores the Alistair conversation. I thought Wynne's history is cool. In fact, she's become one of my favorite characters.
  10. I don't even have the DLC for the one pass. I thought I had it as part of the steam purchase, but I guess not. That was a long battle, but I never even had anyone go down. In fact, I made it back to back to camp before I realized that I hadn't summoned the damned thing, so I ran my sorry backside up the mountain and had my epic battle. It took a while, but we had our way. Okay, really quick, any reason to make Leliana a ranger? Since I don't like having to go back all the time, I take her more and more on my initial forays.
  11. Yeah, being able to use pots while stealthed sounds pretty damned good! Huzzah!
  12. Actually, it really does seem to come down to str or dex, in which case I'll probably go dex and cunning just enough to max my lockpicking/dialogue potential. I still think that strength does have the upper hand because it seems to me the base damage will be higher. The fact is, it's hard to see from the numbers Enoch provided. However, I know from experience in other games that crunching the numbers is one thing whereas experience is quite another, and you generally crunch the numbers to test a build and then try it in action. Rogues come into their own either by positioning or opportunity. The rogue caught in a stand-up face to face fight should probably take the weapon that does the most base damage except for opponents with particularly high armor. I don't know if crit immunity exists, but that really lowers the rogue's damage potential. For that reason, the question is what the stat requirements are for taking the talents that maximize your damage potential not only in an ideal scenario, but also taking into account those times that you're losing a lot of damage potential either by taking the time to change positions or because you simply don't want or have the time to worry about positioning and must simply slug it out with someone in front of you. This is almost entirely conjecture on my part since I haven't been using Leliana as a DW rogue and at least half the time I don't even have a rogue in my party. When I do have a rogue, it tends to be in areas I've already visited because I'm going back to open locked chests. Don't get me wrong, I'll probably go with what Enoch said and use either a combination of swords and daggers or double daggers simply to allow the shield bearer to have a good one handed weapon. Nevertheless, I think the sword probably still has the basic damage advantage in a good portion of the fights. Hell, even in a fight where the enemies are chumps, you're still going to want a sword because their armor will be negligible and you hold them in such disdain you don't even bother using a lot of special moves. Daggers will be devastating in some fights and simply really good others. I might be reading the numbers wrong, though. Like I said. You can't just rely on numbers. Only testing the theory gets you a real feel for things.
  13. Oh. Well. What's that over there?
  14. Okay, I'm ready to be spoiled on two counts, mostly just out of sheer laziness. First of all, is there anywhere I can find a steady source of deep mushrooms, distilling agents, and concentrator agents? I *never* have enough stinking potions. Also, I keep seeing comments about Shale and Oheren or some such. Where are they? I have Chevron the bumbling assassing, Leliana, Alistair, Sten, Doggie, Morrigan, and Wynne so far. I don't know that I care to replace them, but I'm curious if I've missed some NPCs. So far, I've done everything I could readily access in Redclifffe, the Forest, the Tower, and Denerim (although I can't get into the alienage or some parts of the city yet). I'm currently in a frozen dungeony ruins area trying to find something to help Alistair's ol' Arl. This game rocks and, surprise surprise, it's more addictive now than when I started. Huzzah! I hear the ending in a bit of a drag, but I'll have to wait and see on that as I haven't gotten there yet.
  15. Give the guy a break. Tig just told everyone to cool their heals about the draconian Bioware board.
  16. Now this is the rub. I don't mind giving up a little bit of combat ability in order to have a fast talker. What I don't like is giving up diversity. I wonder if it's possible to split the difference. Have enough cunning to persuade folks and pick locks and the like and have enough strength and dex to give me a good spread on talents. I mean, talents make this game. You can literally have two people from the same class who are nothing alike because of talents, which I think is good. It does lead to the opportunity to screw yourself, but overall it's a good aspect of the game.
  17. Generally speaking, you should do more damage with a weapon that does more damage at a slightly slower speed than a weapon that does less damage at a slightly faster speed. If the speed difference is greater, then that will cease to be true. That is to say that if you have a sword that does 10-20 points of damage per hit and a dagger that does 5-10 points of damage per hit and the rate of speed combines to make each do 10dps, then you should actually average slightly more damage from the sword than the dagger. If the dagger is much faster, then it'll pull ahead on dps. At least that's how it seems to work out. Maybe a number cruncher who has put the crunching through some actual tests can speak up. I base my assumption on recording like DPS with different damage spreads with a damage meter in WoW, though, so I guess it might not apply here. I'm interested in a cunning build myself, since I'm going to play a duelist/x next. I'll stick to the cunning build even if it's slightly less advantageous than strength build, assuming that it's not suicidal. What I'm getting is that it's less powerful, but still workable. There are enough dialogue options that depend on persuasion that it might make for a different experience on that basis alone. That and the Mage Tower puts more points into cunning. Anyhow, I like mages and fast talking rogues best. Well... I like fast talking mages best, but that just doesn't seem to be a viable build in this game. Maybe I'm wrong?
  18. I've currently done Redcliffe, the Mage Tower, and the Brecialian forest. I guess I finally have to hit the . I'll do that after I have a little chat with some dark and uglies in the Brecilian forest area. Sadly didn't have much of a chance to finish that earlier, but I think I can take the time now. I didn't even know you could get up to 100% spell resistance. That would mostly bother me if we actually fought each other one on one. We don't combat other players and we're in a party also. As it is, I do think you better take care of enemy mages ASAP because they will ruin your day. Luckily, most of them go down pretty fast with fireball and inferno or blizzard. I'm telling you though, there was one battle against a bunch of raggedy assed bandits that I couldn't figure out how they were knocking me off. After two wipes, I realized that they were up on the hill. Rookie mistake. Next battle was cheese easy. Advanced intel always helps.
  19. I've avoided the spoilers so far, but what I'm getting from you is that I'll eventually have to choose between Morrigan and Alistair? If so, Morrigan better move fast or the door is going to smack her on her ass on the way to the sidewalk.
  20. OH, no, I was playing a diva. You know, drama-queen style. This is what these new fangled romances in games have done to me! Anyhow, I'm with Enoch. It's not that I mind micromanaging. It's that I hate the fact that my people manage to do their own thing even when I'm trying to micromanage. It makes spells like inferno and blizzard far less useful when your melee folks act like rabid dogs pulling at the leash.
  21. Where are all the people who used to play infinity engine games? They seem to have been replaced by those who want games to play themselves. I started to laugh and then I realized you're serious. I've played all of the IE games at least once. Actually, probably at least twice for each and some of them several times. I also started my DA on hard and have not reduced difficulty the entire time. I didn't realize this was an manhood contest. The AI has casters do stupid things. Just the way it is. ...And since you have to unpause somewhere along the line, you're going to end up with bad mage decisions from the AI if you have more than one mage. Ugh, you know, I thought this was a place to discuss stuff. Sorry to have intruded. I'll just head back to the other DA thread. Forget I asked anything.
  22. Here's my problem with the game so far. If I don't issue orders and then go back immediately to my main, she'll start casting cones of cold on my own damned party. It's so bad that I didn't even get cone of cold for Morrigan. Wynne is simply a healer with some low level damage spells so far, which I like. Even doing my best to micromanage my party, I find that my people get hopelessly entangled with the enemy, which is okay because I can usually find spots to cast cones of cold and fireball. Even the nerfed Blizzard and Inferno (or whatever the firestorm spell is called) worked for me really well during that battle last night. My mage is primarily a primal mage with full healing and my arcane is bumped. Now, that might be the wrong build, but it seems to have worked well enough. I've been investing Alistair in durability. Total sword and shield. I don't have another tank option other than the dog, but the dog is already at 100 influence so I'm taking Alistair around. I switch out Morrigan and Leliana. Morrigan if I want someone effective. Leliana if I want locks picked. Wynne is there for the healing, and her mad healing skilz have been the turning point in a couple of battles so far. So, I guess the question is, for you hardcore tactical types, is there any better way to take care of my mage AoE problem? Micromanaging two people with AoE would drive me crazy.
  23. I don't even know who Shale or Oghren are. As I post more in this thread, I find that I read the comments more thoroughly now also, which means it's my own damned fault if I get something spoiled. I'll go post my normal party build in the tactics thread, but I will say that my biggest beef isn't with bad spell choices. Either by luck or superior mental acumen.... okay, luck.... I haven't had an especially hard time with any of the battles, although I admit I've used a lot of injury kits also. I know folks will probably kick sand in my face and make fun of me, but I chose all four tiers of healing, all four tiers of frost, and all four tiers of arcane. I don't know what I'll choose next, for myself, but probably the tier Morrigan has with force field. My biggest problem is that I have to watch my party like a hawk or they get killed. As an elf character, I went to the elves first, then to Denerim (half of which I couldn't even access by the time I left), then the mages tower, and finally to Redcliffe. I guess I went in a big circle. If that's the best way to go, huzzah! If that's a bad way to go, bummer. If the thug battles Gromnir talks about in Denerim are the quest ones to clear out crim I will tell you that they were surprisingly well armed, organized, and skilled. Yeah, I admit that fireballs took a lot of the umph out of them, but then my mage became enemy number one. The hardest battles I've faced so far are the optional ones. The revenants and friends in the Brecilian forest, and In fact, is she as evil as I'm led to believe? Evil or not, I took a couple of stabs at her last night with my standard party and then decided to put off that little foray for a bit as it isn't essential. I'll head back to the Brecilian forest again sometime today and take a new look at the revenants. Time for a little payback. Levels 11-12 right now, so I'm a bit more buff than when we first met. And I'm a big idiot and put a good number of points in willpower. I guess that was a bad move. I still have to suck down mana pots too much for my liking.
  24. +1 I did notice that as well. I guess it's just that things have come so far since I first sat down to play a video game on a home computer, some 30+ years ago, that I'm constantly amazed at how far we've come. Yeah, the graphics aren't quite there yet, but I thought it was a touching little scene. ...And, before you think I was completely attacking you Tigranes, I wasn't. I literally looked away from my computer made an exasperated sound when it started. My wife even asked me what was wrong. By the time the song was done, I thought to myself that it was really actually quite good. If you're going for the cinematic feel in games, you must take these sorts of chances. I was offput by Leliana's facial features, although I think it was really a valiant attempt to catch the expressions of someone singing. Leliana is a bard, after all, and it makes sense that she would sing. However, the other expressions were actually quite well done. Morrigan giving a small shake of her head in *shrug* disapproval? Sten's inscrutable glare. The look over Alistair's shoulder. These are things that required a lot of thought. Someone at Bioware put a lot of love and attention into that scene. When I first played a game on the home computer, an Atari 800, a scene like this would have been science fiction. Anyhow, in other news, I'm in Redcliffe castle. The village defense wasn't all that bad. Two people went down at the windmill, but I didn't lose anyone in town. I only had a handful of mana potions and those are gone. Funny. It used to be the healing potions that worried me. I'm wondering if we have any more extended battles like this. Also, dumped Morrigan for Leliana. Ugh, I like the lockpick, but Leliana doesn't carry as much of the burden.
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