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Everything posted by makryu

  1. I've been catching up with the comments on the latest version and I must say I'm a bit worried I'll be disappointed at the probable still significantly buggy state of the game at launch. I remember when the kickstarter was up and one of the frequent comments was that without a publisher's leash Obsidian would avoid past history of releasing very buggy games at launch. But right now I already see users pointing they merely expect "a bug free critical path" , no "*missing string* descriptions" and other stuff which should be taken for granted. I honestly hate to play excessively buggy games and my usual stance is to let RPGs "mature" for some months at least before playing, but I find it annoying and absurd to be forced to have such low standards for a commercial product and I had hopes for this game to change it at least to some degree. I haven't played the latest build yet, so my question for those who did is if they feel like Obsidian will be able to launch a significantly less buggy game than it usually does this time or if it will just prove publishers aren't deserving of all the blame after all?
  2. I'm short on time (working overtime), maybe this was mentioned in some of the 13 pages, so sorry for asking again if that's the case: Have Obsidian and Paradox given any thought to the possibility that splitting the shipments could incur extra import taxes? My reasoning is that if I receive two shipments identified as a "collector's edition game" I could be doubly charged import taxes for the amount I donated, which would be particularly disastrous in my case (effectively doubling the amount I donated to the kickstarter, at least). I'd be all for #1 if that weren't the case.
  3. I'll be the devil's advocate and say that I find metacritic useful. Whenever I gain access to a new console, I use it to search the game library. I learned through the years that I almost certainly won't like anything with a score below 60. Between 60 and 70 It's pretty much down to how much I like the genre, or if it has a strong story based on overly simplistic or broken gameplay. Above 70 it's probable I'll at least like the overall experience if the game's broad characterization (plot outline, basic gameplay mechanics) interests me. Outliers are games I read about that might attract me in a very particular way despite being "bad" and AAA hype trains which I'll have to discount. I'll usually read two or three reviews, both critics and user ones, with disparate scores, to get an overall feeling. I must say I was rarely disappointed with this method. I don't follow it blindly, and I very rarely decide amongst these previously selected games which I'll play based on some having higher scores than others. But metacritic is useful to me in that way. On topic, I think OE has experienced developers who have been through a lot. I'm sure none of them will pull a Phil Fish on us, and on the long run the feedback they receive of their games is probably much more positive than negative.
  4. How has reputation no link to the respective character? It is built based on the character's actions, and if the character's actions aren't linked to whoever that character is supposed to be, then I don't know what would be. In the real world, people form an idea about who a person is based on his actions or the information obtained from other people about his supposed actions. I don't think it is so much of a stretch to assume that, on the background, information about the character's actions gets shared enough amongst different people via merchants, travelers, etc., to justify a relatively widely spread reputation.
  5. I must say, it's been pure bliss seeing the same a**holes who derided so effusively promancers a while back acting like crybabies over combat xp. I can't say I expected the beta to be so much fun
  6. If you had bother to read the thread at all you would have seen that combat xp proponents want both kill xp and quest xp... I did bother to read, and it wasn't easy, with supposedly old-school posers and people with multiple personality disorder making the bulk of the posts, and nothing I read changes anything related to my previous comment. There is absolutely no way in hell that deciding to award only quest xp (no matter how you accomplish a quest) is "enforcing a gameplay style" any more than also awarding combat xp, in fact quite possibly a lot less so.
  7. So, awarding xp only for quests, no matter how you solve them, is actually enforcing a gameplay style, but awarding xp for kills isn't? Quite the logic there.
  8. I think the xp system needs changes, yes. The gains need to be more apparent and frequent. I didn't get the feeling of a steady progression while playing. This may have something to do with the bugs. However, I can't say I felt any less compelled to fight. Not even once has the "but I'll get no xp" thought crossed my mind. In fact, after I ended a few encounters without fighting, I felt liberated, because in previous IE games I more than once opted out of a peaceful solution (or went to kill the NPC I had peacefully interacted with afterwards) because of the thought of losing xp. I think that is the design goal behind this decision and it seems to be reasonably successful even in the beta. That doesn't mean, however, that they can't improve. I agree that the lack of non-combat abilities, the amount of random combat encounters and a general lack of options to meaningfully avoid random combat does quite a bit to hurt the developers' intentions. I imagine how nice it would feel if you could, I dunno, use your survival skill to simulate some natural prey sounds, drawing attention of nearby creatures out of the party's path; or maybe use some scent-oriented creature ingredient on the party members to walk among creatures of that type undetected; or even use mechanics to activate some environment element which would get rid of some creatures for you. IMO, the lack of non-combat options for dealing with non-quest encounters is what hurts the most the no xp idea.
  9. Was he ever involved with PoE? I remember him being a stretch goal. What happened?
  10. I like the contrast/whatever change on the character models, as it tries to solve the ghost effect. The backdrop and additional shadows don't look good, IMO, and I hope the devs don't go that way.
  11. I support steps xp entirely. The main reason is that with default player behavior (go to a hub, get all quests possible, go in the wilderness, solve the most you can before coming back to the hub), you end up with long intervals getting no xp just to get everything at once), It just doesn't seem adequate to distribute a reward like xp, that is maybe the main reason why many players feel the game as rewarding in the first place (sad but true), in such a way. I wouldn't worry with optional steps giving more xp, as long as the difference didn't go beyond 20-30% what the quest would normally offer. If in the long term this made progress difficult, I'd be also a defender of main quest combat difficulty adapting to the level of the player at those later levels. I know many hate the system, but it's probably because it's used uniformly in other games, making progress useless. This kind of situation is perfect for it, I believe, as it would also avoid making a final confrontation too easy and anticlimactic for players that did everything the game offers. Besides, giving steps xp would make the combat xp widows less angry by distracting them.
  12. I'm talking about Dyrwood Ruins, You can get there from two different places, the closest entrance to the ritual chamber being using the entrance near the ogre cave. It's full of cultists. Is it the same place you're referring to?
  13. Anybody managed to get to the ritual/torture chamber in Dyrwood Ruins. I have two keys Skull Key and Old Dungeon Key but none opens any of the doors to that chamber. I'm pretty sure it's a bug, but I'm wondering if someone has managed to circumvent it somehow...
  14. Ok, my thoughts then after 2-3 hours and having explored about 50% of what's in the beta. Pros: - Overall visuals are great, nailing the expected "updated IE" feeling. - Small touches such as the bestiary are great. - The dialogue framework, if adequately used in the full game, has the potential to influence future CRPGs. It is truly compelling. - I appreciated the importance of items such as the grappling hook in environment interaction. I think this is an area in which CRPGs were always lacking and the scripted interactions are a nice solution to that. Cons: - The environments feel a bit too static, and it contrasts significantly when water or other large moving element (I've seen only the watermill so far) is present. I don't know if there is any possible fix for this, but if I had to try I'd say there has to be more numerous small moving elements occurring at a more frequent rate. I'd also say that the outdoor tall grass adds negatively to this impression. I think you kind of expect tall grass to move, whereas short grass like in past IE games gets a free pass for being static. - Too many "pop-up dialogue" NPCs. Since the game isn't voiced for the most part, I sort of expected verbose random NPCs with useless but entertaining banter. If the beta town is any indication, I'd say the rate for fleshed out NPCs vs "pop-up dialogue" NPCs is pretty much on par with what I'd expect from a fully voiced Bioware game (that is, mostly only named characters directly related to quests have real dialogue) , which is a con to me in this game. - The lions don't fit in. Remove the lions, please . - I think every change, such as XP prizes or a new bestiary entry should be signaled with notifications such as the ones used for quest updates, or something similar. There should be more "fanfare" when the player progresses in some way. - I don't feel like the inventory interface is making it easy enough to know what's the better equipment for your character. A mouse over pop-up window with green and red stat alterations would work wonders here, especially since the system itself is original and foreign enough. - Lack of more varied portraits, especially ones matching the godlike heads. I assume this is planned to be present in the full release. - The attribute system felt odd to me: I can't pinpoint the reason why, maybe there are missing directions on to what will really be relevant to what in the game, or maybe it's because it doesn't feel like it matters so much where the points will go. - The skills felt lacking to me. I sort of expected a more varied selection, and more active uses for them, a la Fallout. The way it is, it feels underdeveloped as a system. - Dedicated abilities screen, please? Is it somewhere I was too dumb to find? - Combat doesn't feel as satisfying as in the IE games. I think there are a number of reasons for that. *The combat sounds aren't truly doing justice to what's happening in the combat. Maybe the fact that they're buggy and missing often has to o with it, but I also found the volumes misplaced at times. * The amount of combat info above the characters heads isn't helping. It detracts from the action severely, I think. It doesn't help that the hp meters look ugly, and that the recovery bars diminish instead of increase, which just felt counter-intuitive to me. I think this area could use a major overhaul, with the recovery bar and action circle info going to the portrait area, with hp remaining as an option, but with reworked art (a classic continuous bar would look better, I think). The status icons also feel too small. I would favor them being bigger. *The combatants feel grouped too closely together. I think this impression is in part due to the fact that their circles overlap. I think a much clearer way would be to go with the classical IE where the circles didn't overlap. Also, the circles could be used to indicate who's engaging and engaged with who, as that is a mechanic which I found myself ignoring mostly due to the difficulty in identifying what was going on. *Who's using which abilities on whom could also use some work. As subdued as I think the effects are intended to be, I think they still have to be more visible in some way. I guess that's it, I'll be sure to post other impressions when I get to play more. I think the devs shouldn't shy away from delaying the game to address these issues. The game is clearly promising, I'd hate to end up seeing its potential somewhat wasted.
  15. Haven't seem it mentioned and might have missed it, but I would've liked to see spells with non-combat uses as well. I truly hope they'll be in the final product.
  16. Somebody in part one asked if someone believed romances could be fixed, if it was worth the effort, and how. I'll bite and try to answer a bit of it. First off, most criticism I've read in these forums regarding romance in general is easily reduced to personal taste. Some believe gaming is like superbowl, other don't want anything messing with their combat simulators. In summary, CRPGs are a macho thing and sissies who like romance should get out/ phase out/ shut up. Others believe romance in games means sex (a perversion in their perfect world where violence is the only pleasure allowed) with the added offense of having annoying feelings attached. These critics can't really be answered, since it's just personal preference, no matter how much some try to portray it otherwise. In my opinion, a good, complete, expansive CRPG can only benefit with the inclusion of a wide variety of dialogue simulating all sorts of human relationships. CRPGs were known in the past for pushing the envelope in the portrayal of human interactions. It's one of the truly distinctive features of the genre when compared to others. I think ruling romance out is a bad move, since it means restricting precisely one of the distinguishing features of the genre, which I mentioned above. I agree that relationship meters, buying off NPCs with presents and making everyone bissexual is not the way to go. But I don't see this fact (that romances in CRPGs have taken an odd turn) as meaning the death of the concept in the genre. Here are some ideas that are entirely within the realm of possibility and I think could certainly improve the implementation of romance (and other interactions, for that matter): - I think all CRPG developers should take a lesson from major conversations in Deus Ex: Human Revolution. The framework in which it inserted the important dialogues, with varying responses even to the same chosen options and an added emotional tone, and the way it tried to turn dialogue into a game in itself without making it ridiculous like, say, Oblivion, are all ideas I think CRPGs could benefit from; - Stop making romances only a matter of accumulating influence/ giving the right answers. Insert the option to have a NPC fall in love when saved during a deadly encounter, even if no effort had been made before towards that. Use presents only to further dialogue, not accumulate points. Don't punish those who don't romance NPCs by adding equivalent friendship dialogue trees to be pursued. Seriously allow for romance with non-companion NPCs. Explore the possibilities of when love doesn't go well: vengeful heartbroken NPCs, companions that won't fall in love no matter what despite still having the options to attempt it, companions that will spend the night with the PC then never want to get close to them afterwards, etc.; - Don't go excessively formulaic, such as "obligatory sex night before final battle"; - Even when inserting romance, don't put it needlessly in the spotlight. A game with romance involving only non-companion NPCs could well accomplish that since party dynamics could be only minimally affected; - Find writers who like the subject to write your romances well; I know it's just the tip of the iceberg, but it's more than enough for me to advocate better romance attempts instead of no romances.
  17. Trying to be constructive about it, I agree that it will be weird if the world somehow does not incorporate romantic aspects in any of its quests, legends, etc. I hope that Obsidian, despite their apparent disregard for the subject, does not go down that route. On a side note, I'd be all for romance with non-companion NPCs, such as the innkeeper, a king, etc. I think it has been severely underrepresented so far in CRPGs, and generally not seriously taken into account, despite the fact that it would be a natural thing to occur. Plus, I assume its implementation would be a lot less resource intensive than a companion romance.
  18. Pretty sure my 45 posts in these forums have more thought in them than your 5000+
  19. It's quite funny how this topic stayed alive for at least a couple of days without any input whatsoever from pro-romancers. Quite odd behavior from people who supposedly can't stand the existence of this discussion at all to keep it up.
  20. I've seen a number of people dismissing DA:O almost completely in these forums. Can't say if they're the majority, though. Can't agree with you that it had horrible characters overall, but it's off-topĂ­c anyway. Making them known for their sex? WTF? Where did I say that? And flaming the dev? Really? By stating a disappointment over ONE of their decisions? Seriously, is that flaming now? Also, how is romance a "cool new thing", when it's been present for more than a decade? At least I agree that they shouldn't aim for the lowest common denominator. But I disagree completely that inserting romances is "aiming for the lowest common denominator" at all. I think Obsidian catered to those who, for a lot of different reasons, had the IE games as reference for memorable gaming experiences. The ravenous mob is but a part of that demographic, which, whether you like it or not, is also composed by pro-romancers. Can't see where I'm lost here... So you believe almost anything that comes out is deserving of the trash can, even when it's considered ground breaking. Ok, can't argue with taste. The argument of the number of games coming out is only relevant to the extent that it demonstrates how irrelevant the genre is becoming for gaming as a whole. That's what I find sad, after all. Also, would you argue that a game with fantastic storytelling, for instance, can't be relevant for games outside its genre? Even mechanics can be cross-genre: just look at how widespread some classical RPG mechanics, such as XP and levels, have become. You asked for examples: out of the top of my mind, I consider Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons and The Last of Us two games that presented something new in storytelling(both) and mechanics(Brothers). I agree with adding stuff just for the sake of adding, and I never asked for romance to be hamfisted in the game. Lots of assumptions in there. I have to admit, it's getting too tiresome to argue with people who seem to purposefully misread arguments according to their interests, when they address the ideas at all, that is. Yay for the romance haters! You're almost succeeding at making me no longer care!
  21. Why? BioWare is giving you all the romance-orgies you need, no? If romance solves everything, why aren't you seeing them as bringing the best RPG's around out? I'm not a Bioware fanboy, but I don't dismiss everything they made as rubbish. Much to the disdain of many here, I hold DAO in high regard, and I was able to have enough fun with most of their games. In a market as starved for CRPGs as the current one, their games are certainly better than having nothing to play. That said, I don't think romance alone would take the genre out of obscurity and irrelevance. My comment was a reference to the fact that the absurdly elitist attitude of most romance haters reflects on the genre as particularly niche, to the point that maybe even the developers stop caring to appease such a ravenous mob. I'm willing to bet that when PoE devs decided not to include romance in the game it must have been at least mentioned that to include romance itself would be a source of criticism since it possibly wouldn't ever be good enough to appease those same people. Between being criticized for not including romance and for including romance, they may not be willing to take risks, after all. The truth is that none of the games considered groundbreaking in their storytelling and mechanics in the last few years were CRPGs. That is a sad state of affairs, in my opinion, and I think narrowing what is acceptable inside the genre and dismissing everything else as crap doesn't help it.
  22. <Takes a look at most anti-romance replies> <Suddenly realizes why the CRPG genre is in its current sad state of irrelevance and game starvation in the industry>
  23. The passionate way some people are trying to dissuade others from discussing this topic is proof enough to me that it deserves to be present on this very board. Whether it provides insight for the devs or not isn't for anyone but the devs to evaluate, and even that (the supposed usefulness for the devs) wouldn't be an ultimate parameter to consider it worthy of discussion or not.
  24. I agree that there is little point in arguing about romances to be present. Still, by posting in the forums we're making clear that there are perfectly reasonable backers who are disappointed at their absence. To refrain from posting because our personal tastes at CRPGs somehow inexplicably offend some people is to let these people's visions prevail unchallenged as if they represented the backers' views as a whole, which couldn't be farther from the truth. As has already been proven at other occasions, the devs are influenced by what's posted here.
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