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Everything posted by Sensuki

  1. I did. actually - you weren't there. The response to my concerns about the system design was that it was too late to make changes and the thing I've previously re-iterated twice. Due to the fact that they were not going to change any of that stuff, I did not bring it up again until post-release. I also don't think there was really anyone involved in the beta that predicted that the combat across the game would be as repetitive as it is. I'm not the only one making these claims, I've seen posters at Something Awful and badgame.net, people who *hate* me say exactly the same things as I have. If you're really interested in what I did and didn't do, feel free to search my post history, specifically threads created. "Over a million dollars a month" is from a Feargus interview. Infinitron or someone else from the Codex should be able to back up that statement, having also seen the interview. Obsidian outsourced the majority of their Wilderness Area Environment Art to a company in Portland. They said (quote is available somewhere) that Outsourcing is expensive. What exactly are you suggesting that they outsource ? I don't think it's a gloomy scenario for most people, and you keep bringing up my ignored suggestions when you have absolutely no idea what I suggested or what was ignored. You're simply following on from something Gromnir said. I didn't imply a change of horses, simply a broadening of the fanbase. The fanbase of Pillars of Eternity is not the same as the group of people that crowdfunded the game. It is pretty obvious simply by seeing who posts on this forum that the majority of people are new, non-backers. I did not say that the presence of a Story Time mode is a bad thing. I do not care about it. If I was intending to play the sequel I would be concerned about the change to the combat speed though as I don't believe that action speed is the problem with the pace of combat. It's the swingy damage, and the movement speed of units IMO.
  2. You mustn't be reading my posts man, I said a few pages ago that the character system is fun. Bit hyberbolic there. Anything and everything can be improved but what I consider very good or better: Some of the Environment Art, Scripted Interactions/Interstitials, some of the UI design, some of the character system, Durance, Grieving Mother, Eder and Aloth. The soul detective quests are pretty cool/unique and the hollowborn storyline is the most interesting part about the plot even if it's only a side piece of it. Good: Majority of the Environment Art, Character/Creature Art, Weapon system, portraits, some of the music, most of the animation, unified attack resolution system, attribute design etc etc No. It's just putting two and two together. Obsidian are a mid-sized developer making RPGs. There are not many of these companies left in the world, let alone indepedent ones. They have a burn-rate of over a million USD per month to be able to afford to pay their staff. A mid-sized project like a Pillars of Eternity sequel will need to make a significant return on investment, and Feargus Urquhart has already gone on record saying that most of the time, sequels are a sophomore slump as far as sales are concerned. Feargus is also a man who plays it safe. To make the ROI that Obsidian needs on the sequel, they will need a wider audience and to get that audience they will most likely need to make the game more accessible, easier and aim a bit more for the lowest common denominator - at least that is the 'safest' way of getting such an audience. The Story Time mode is one example of this, this is a mode that will allow people who are very, very bad at RTWP combat to get through the game without getting so frustrated that they might return the game on Steam. A slower combat speed is also another thing that will make the combat more manageable for such people. Game journalists will be laughing as they demolish everything in their path when playing for review, if the default settings are Story Time and the default combat speed is slow. "9.5/10 great gaem, finished it in three days and now I've got two days off!!". For the sequel I think you'll see a better story, better environment and character art, better load times, possibly better performance. I think you'll see less trash mobs. The character system will likely be simpler. The UI will probably be super-over-the-top transparent and handholding (possibly detrimentally so). I don't have too much hope for better quest or encounter design but the combat system probably won't be worse.
  3. My opinion of the combat has always been that it needed work / wasn't right ever since the start of the beta. I raised my concerns about the combat and was told that my experience was based on a small level range [4-8] against underwhelming content. Unfortunately the problems that I had with the beta were only magnified in the full release. I also thought that despite not really liking the combat, that since that it was an Obsidian game, that the story would at least be good as they have a reputation for good writing and I did really enjoy Knights of the Old Republic 2. Unfortunately what we got was something closer to Neverwinter Nights 2 OC level of quality, featuring a copypaste 'trial event' from the same game, big issues with the plot, player motivation, player agency, a very weak antagonist and a severely disjointed thematic leap from Chapter 2 to 3, which basically feels like a different game altogether. This was more disappointing than the combat and the reason why I stopped playing. (I *think* this is a result of the design by committee approach they took to coming up with the story and Eric Fenstermaker not being full time on the project for a significant period at the beginning. This problem will likely not re-occur for the sequel as if and when they do one, they'll have a much more focused effort from their two 'lead writers'.) What you witnessed was me trying to do everything I could to promote the game, then after playing it, judging it by it's own merit and realizing that ... it's not very good, I didn't enjoy it and I'd spent a huge amount of effort to receive a negative return on investment as far as gameplay enjoyment went. It does not have anything to do with suggestions being ignored, or anything any of the developers said or did external to the game itself. Many of the devs were very cool to interact with during the beta (Nick Carver, Dimitri Berman & Roby Atadero in particular), it's super handy to have a Lead Designer that is open about mechanics and design decisions and willing to reply to questions, and I think that a lot of the technical people - Environment Artists, Character Artists and the like did a very good job. There's nothing that I could have done or suggested that would have made me enjoy the full game. The problems all arise from the core design decisions and the content - of which, could not be influenced through the beta. I did learn a lot about game development and (vicariously) game design in the process, and for that I am very thankful and would not do anything differently. For the record, I also don't really like how Wasteland 2 or Divinity Original Sin turned out, but they weren't my dream concept. This was. I did like some of the titles from smaller companies though - such as Expeditions Conquistador, The Banner Saga etc.
  4. Every post I made in this thread prior to you and Gromnir coming in with your personal issues was on topic. For you spam seems to equal posts from a person who does not enjoy the game. Lol.
  5. You don't even know what you're talking about, what suggestions exactly? Why? Because our theory was right? Big deal. Attributes are one of those set and forget things, they have little to no impact on the actions that players perform in combat. They were never really a big problem. No you didn't, you mentioned XP awards - what XP awards? The only time I have talked about XP rewards is after trap and lock XP was implemented and I said the implementation was poor. Otherwise I have not talked about experience at all. Either your memory betrays you or you are just making stuff up. Too lazy to provide a specific example. It was well-earned, but not for the reason you think. I also didn't start any of those confrontations on the other forums, Shevek and others did, if someone starts slagging me on a forum I read that's only an invitation for me to reply to it. Specific post: http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3706905&pagenumber=552&perpage=40#post446918209 Doesn't look very over the top to me. I came here to discuss the topic. You and Zenbane did not. If you have low standards, maybe.
  6. Press F10. Game pauses in single-player with the menu overlay. I actually talk about games, all I've ever seen you do is attack other posters.
  7. Most real-time games offer a pause function (including the game being paused when the menu screen is showing) to allow players to leave the game running while they're not at their computer or ALT-TABed as a convenience feature. This does not make them real-time with pause. If a game allows you to issue commands while paused, then it is RTWP. From memory, Rollercoaster Tycoon does allow you to issue commands while paused, and thus it is RTWP but it has no combat, and I'm talking about RTWP combat here. Games like AoE2 and Warcraft 3 and the like DO NOT HAVE RTWP combat, they have real-time combat, because you cannot issue commands while paused, in WC3 you can't even move your screen position. If you want to religiously follow what some TV tropes list says about games, go ahead. You show the same kind of dogma here. The fact that I have the gumption to judge this game on it's merit rather than blindly follow it seems to irk you considerably. You are essentially white knighting. If anyone's trolling around here, it's you
  8. The current attribute system has exactly the same layout as the one Matt and I proposed in October last year. I don't recall making any specific suggestion to implement hard counters because I know that it would have been a futile effort. I was against XP for traps and locks (I don't think there's anyone here that will disagree that they were only haphazardly implemented to shut the people up who were complaining about them on the forums) but that's not a big deal at all. How experience is payed out is pretty inconsequential to the things the player does in combat. So I'm not exactly sure about what different direction you're referring to at least with those three examples. You've mentioned this a few times, but you don't list any specific examples (likely due to laziness). Most of the factual corrections were because Obsidian had changed the mechanics of how something worked. No, you just have a personal issue with me, and codexers in general. It seems you're not immune to prejudice either. http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/82713-age-of-decadence-launched/?view=findpost&p=1741297
  9. Other than the removal of Melee Engagement or Movement Recovery Slow (which were both implemented in the IE mod BEFORE the game was released), what suggestions did I make that were 'ignored' that would have made any difference to the non-reactive, hardly tactical rote combat gameplay? I can't think of any, that's not something I'm bitter about. Just disappointed at how the combat (and the story/plot) turned out. We were able to do about 90% of the UI changes I wanted in the IE mod as well - blue circles for NPCs, always show circles, classic tooltip style, classic TAB functions, Karkarov made a beautiful solid HUD and Bester made it modular to support a wide variety of preferences in layout and portrait, button types. I had some concerns about the combat in the beta but I was basically told that my experience was based on a small level range against underwhelming combat encounters and that the full game would be better, so I went in hopeful. Unfortunately the problems only amplified with the full game, which was quite disheartening.
  10. That list is wrong. RTWP as a category refers to the ability to pause and issue commands to your party members while the game is paused. That list just includes real time games that allow you to pause the game. When the game is paused in Age of Empires 2, you can't issue commands. No one can do anything until the game is unpaused. It's not an RTWP game. It's a real-time game. Apparently FTL RTWP is also very good, but I haven't played it. The combat is not good. Its only saving grace is that it uses an RTS control scheme and fixed axonometric camera, making it enjoyable to interact with when compared to some of the other horrible implementations in the past. Actual combat is quite bad and the higher player input does not correspond to an increased amount of active decision making by the player. The character system is 'fun', as in there's a lot of choice and you can make any character you like and it's viable in the game but the actual combat gameplay is inferior to the IE games (BGs and IWDs anyway), 7.62mm or Aarklash IMO.
  11. I like both too, but PE is the worst RTWP I've played since DA:O. Not sure which I hate more. Good RTWP - Infinity Engine games, 7.62mm High Caliber, Aarklash Legacy. I remember the original Dungeon Siege being ~okayish~ but it's been so long that I don't remember. Obsidian devs are pretty much all TB/Tabletop fans and it shows in how they approach the design of things. They really should be making TB games instead IMO, but here we are.
  12. Josh also stated that they'd like to make combat speed closer or slower than the current slow speed in Pillars of Eternity, just to add some salt to the wound there.
  13. The ship has already sunk IMO. They may as well just pander to their new audience, it would probably end up making a better game for the sequel (although not necessarily one I would want to play).
  14. They couldn't because they needed to ride the nostalgia dollars for the Kickstarter. Now they don't.
  15. If the aim is the most sales as possible, not a bad direction to go in. Totally unsurprising direction too. Foreshadowing Pillars 2 - story mode and half speed combat default!
  16. Chris put an unhealthy amount of effort into Torment (by his own account it was very detrimental to his health) and that's probably why the work is so good Unfortunately we'll probably never get anything like that again from him. Hopefully some bright star somewhere will come along and give us some good quality RPG companions elsewhere. I don't really see it coming from Obsidian because they have gone down the route of making safe, risk-free games and the criticism they've gotten over the years for lack of polish has got to them, now it appears to be one of their top focuses.
  17. It is hard to gauge, but we do know that a large lot of content for GM and Durance were cut (particularly GM) and they were supposed to have an arc involving each other, which was also cut. Chris has never written 'real' characters. They've always been larger than life in style and substance but I find that enjoyable. I would have preferred fewer companions with more content like Durance than what we got, YMMV.
  18. Chris does not take credit for those characters as they were largely re-written by the other writers, so I imagine issues such as that (and whatever problems people have with GM) are largely in part due to re-writes and cuts. I thought Durance, GM (despite HORRIBLE VO), Eder and Aloth were good companions but Eder and Aloth needed more content IMO. Kana, Sagani and Pallegina were boring and I didn't use Hiravias much because I got him last.
  19. Active abilities are also active. How does the fact that stealth and positioning are active make them not rote ? You perform them before every encounter because performing them during combat is penalized. The stealth system combined with the penalties for changing positioning in combat quite drastically changes the gameplay for the worse compared to the Infinity Engine games IMO. Rather than tactically reacting to enemy movement, positioning and targeting in combat you perform a large amount of it before combat begins, which I don't think is very fun. No it doesn't. Not in the sense that it is here. The issue is that the player is performing actions regardless of what the enemy does. In action games, you react to enemy attacks and movement. The Infinity Engine games often require you to react to enemy actions - you drink potions, you dispell, you counter-spell, you move and re-position. You almost never have to do these things in Pillars of Eternity, especially on non-PotD difficulties. In the IE games you also don't spend the majority of combat spamming actives. Pillars adds a lot of 'busywork'. As a high level Kensai in BG2, you might have 9 uses of Kai per day but you might face a hundred encounters, and the player has to decide which encounters are pertinent for it to be used in. Per-encounter abilities here you use *every* encounter and often in the same pattern. There's no thought or cost involved, it's just a mindless increase to player input. I never stated that there was a one true 'optimal position'. Optimal positioning falls into pre-encounter setup, and while the terrain combined with common sense may dictate where the good positions are, it's still something that you perform before the majority of fights in the game due to the penalties for doing it in combat. I believe that if a player is actually able to realize when they've made a mistake and fix it/need to make a change then they should not be punished for it as it goes against the core thinking process of players in real-time games. Players are required to be actively thinking and determine for themselves if and when and what decisions and actions they need to make and perform - this differs from turn-based where the game dictates the structure of your decision making and actions. The engagement system is a turn-based style solution to a real-time problem. The developers want to punish you for making an active decision - this is bad. This was not a complaint. So it was a pointless thing to bring up as a 'criticism'. And the ability to do this costs character advancement points that could be better spent on being more useful more of the time. The Rogue's invisibility is not a good ability because it breaks engagement but because it makes you invisible/untargetable and it cannot be dispelled, unlike the Infinity Engine games. The Barbarian's leap? ability in TWM:P1 is not a good ability because it breaks engagement but because it allows you to clip through other units (I would think). With Engagement disabled these abilities would still be good abilities - they're not really things that you pick for the ability to break engagement, but for their other uses. No it doesn't because the combat pre-positioning only occurs because the player is penalized for performing such actions IN combat. Change encounter strategy, and largely consists of out of combat decision making. More enemies dying means more moving to attack new enemies, or enemies moving to attack you ... however WHEN no units are dying, how much movement is there? Close to zero, I'll bet - because of Melee Engagement, bad pathfinding and Move Recovery Penalty. This a somewhat valid point, but I do have answers that explain the correlation, I just didn't write them in the OP. My forum posts cover some of it - overabundance of per encounter abilities, the stealth system, engagement and movement recovery penalizing movement and re-positioning in combat, homogeneous system design, lack of dispelling and counter-spelling - a bunch of other things. When/if I have the inclination to write about it I'd like to do a proper post about it sometime. It fails to recognize player agency in both builds and gameplay options. The way you optimally execute encounters plays far differently based on builds. A party of 6 rogues plays very differently from a party of 6 rangers.This is true, but then this is also true for the Infinity Engine games. My experience is with a PC and the NPC companions. I believe that the game would still likely have the same repetitive nature to it with a gimmick party though. You fail to outline alternatives to a self-selected problem. A system where everyone excels at melee and ranged attacks? An RNG heavy system that is based more on reacting to randomness than careful gameplay? A series of onion peeling spell defenses and counterspells while everyone else flails around aimlessly? A kite and spank game? Criticizing without suggesting alternatives is fairly useless, especially when the criticisms are generalized enough to apply to most systems.Yes, in the OP I do not provide an alternative solution to any listed problems. It's nothing new. You didn't even bother writing a fresh post.Actually I did, and while I've been making a lot of the same arguments there is new things in there, especially in my forum posts.
  20. They were? I thought his were easily the best, even if they were in a kind of jarringly completely different style to every other character in the game ... in a way that kind of overshadowed everyone else. I did like Eder and Aloth as characters as well, but their content was on the thinner side.
  21. BG1 is pretty uneven in terms of usefulness of party members in encounters, and all of the IE games have a bit of that. I think BG1 was a bit too uneven, but in the other games it was better. That's actually one of the things that I find makes Pillars a bit stale is because everyone is useful all the time, repeating the same useful things all the time, and that gets boring. One of the really fun things I find about IWD is that I can do encounters with 2-3 characters and save some of my others. A lot of the time it's more optimal to make sure that enemies are targeting the lowest AC character because that means the party will suffer less damage overall, so I'll take my Fighter with the best gear and a couple of supporting characters along to take care of several encounters and then bring my more specialist characters in when needed. I also split the party across the map a few times - combat was a very dynamic experience. In Pillars on the odd occasion I did leave characters out of fights because of ranged enemies like Shades etc that would just target the squishiest character and to minimize total damage to the party, just leave that character out of combat and use characters that will take less damage but the concept of combat is super rigid with "encounter" "combat only" and the whole party vs "one encounter", etc. It's a more controlled and less fun/freeform experience.
  22. I agree - and the designers (Josh specifically) focus everything on the character building side and not the actual what-you-do-in-combat side.
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