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About Skapanza

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  1. I like having the game be different each time I play. I think it's unlikely any particular PC would want to be friends with everyone they meet in the course of a journey. I've played BGII over and over to try out new group dynamics, and I sometimes find it frustrating going through the loyalty quests of people I don't even like. Just my two cents. I would like to see plenty interaction and get to know a number of good-fitting characters each adventure.
  2. DreamDancer and Heresiarch sum up a lot of my concern with DAII very well. I don't know that I would go as far as eliminate VO for NPCs as well as the PC. I don't think my BGII experience would be as fun if i couldn't shout Korgan and Minsc battle cries at my pen-and-paper games. Just my opinion, but that's worth glancing over my name in text but not hearing it in the VO. Otherwise I think you both are right on with your comments. Lots of dialogue, fleshed out party members, good times.
  3. I wholeheartedly agree with the OP! This is where my hopes for this game lie, and the reason for me BGII is the game that all other games fail to recreate. In playing Dragon Age (two much moreso than one), I always felt that that lore aspect was anything but subtle. If your party member is being grouchy and you stop to talk to them they may as well have a "NPC QUEST INCOMING" box floating above their head. In Baldur's Gate my party members are whining, bickering, lovin' on each other and myself, angrily leaving my party, etc. Sometimes it's part of an overarching party member quest, sometimes it's just Korgan insulting Anomen because that's who he is. The subtlety is created by having dialogue options that are a) not necessarily introduced by the PC, but sometimes by an NPC approaching me, or speaking with one another, and b) dialogue between NPCs or NPCs and myself is common enough that each time it happens i'm not thinking "Here comes the one quest associated with this party member after which I will have their undying loyalty and never have to interact with them again!" Rather, I'd like to see what we had in BG, where characters are commenting on your actions, approving or disapproving in a way that doesn't seem contrived, because they talk to you about other meaningless things too. Far too often there is little interaction outside of things directly related to quests and moving the story forward, which is something I'd like to see avoided in PE. Lots of interactions, so that when the quest interactions do occur, they don't seem ham-fisted and artificial. I think avoiding VO (for the main character, NPC VOs are of course very important! What would we do if we knew heard the dulcet tones of Minsc?) is a great plan for lots of reasons, some of which are mentioned earlier in this thread. First of all, I hear my character's voice in my head, I'm not especially interested in what the developers think I sound like. Secondly, i find it really frustrating when the game I'm playing refers to me constantly with a general term. It's not so bad in ME because everyone is Commander Shepard, but it necessarily limits your RP and character. But in games like DA where you are not referred to by name but always as "the Hero" or whatever it was, I find it breaks the 4th wall. Baldur's Gate did a good job, even when they had VO, because the text of Imoen's dialogue said "Skapanza, are you awake? I was having a terrible nightmare" but the VO itself would just say "Are you awake? I was having a terrible nightmare". That little adjustment made a significant difference for my immersion experience. This rambled on pretty long, but it really encapsulates my feelings towards NPC interaction and immersion and includes some things I'd love to see in PE. It's tangentially related to recognition of choice. I'm sure I'll have more to say on the issue later in the thread, but I came over from the dialogue thread and it must have been in the forefront of my mind.
  4. Yeah, that's my understanding, too, at least on normal mode. I wonder if I can toggle it on/off once I started the game with expert mode, though. Then again, if it's just a name, I can start normal mode with options which resemble expert mode with the tags on and some conveniences which can ease my pain in cooping the game with my life. After all, who cares about what mode with which I play the game. I've said it before higher up in this thread, but I'd really like the toggle on/off tags to be an option independent of the difficulty level at which i'm playing. I'd prefer to play, whether at expert or easy, without the dialogue [tags].
  5. ^ Alright, fair enough. It's been a while since I've played ME1, I checked the video and you're right. That being said, can you say that you were never surprised by the crazy thing Shepard did as a result of a blasé dialog choice you picked?
  6. ^ Sure, but at least you got to say things the way you wanted your character to say them. I think that's immersive. I would say there was a fair amount of responsiveness in the dialogue too, if not always in the gameplay. If you were mean to Imoen, she responded as if you had hurt her feelings. I like that stuff. Again, i repeat my plea to at least have tags be optional, and independent of difficulty level, so I can turn them off on any difficulty.
  7. I find this only happens when you have poorly written dialogue with few options. Consider BG2 vs. the ME series. In BG2 you often had a bunch of different ways to say essentially the same thing, whether you wanted to say it in an evil way, a kind way, a crazy way, the point was even when there wasn;t a decision to make, you had clear options that helped develop your character in your head. In Mass Effect, you are facing Wrex and have two options "Stop it!" in blue and "Don't even think about it" in red. Pick blue and Wrex backs down from all your goodness or something. Pick red and you shoot Wrex in the face. When you have bad writing you say different things in the same way. Good writing lets you say the same things in different ways that suit your character and don't totally surprise you.
  8. This seems like something that, while it would be interesting, would suck up hours of work that I would prefer to see dedicated to enhancing character interaction, developing story and dialogue, and creating interesting areas, weapons, armor, and monsters. I'm not a big fan of shooting a fireball inside of a saw mill and not seeing everything burn to the ground, but I understand why it's typically left out of the game. Games that do make accommodations for this sort of thing (Diablo III is mentioned as an example) have glaring deficiencies in other areas.
  9. I think evdk has the right idea. It's clear some people want the tags so that they know which they want to pick. People like evdk and myself would prefer to infer the reaction we will get based on what we are saying. An option to turn those tags off (unrelated to the difficulty at which we are playing the game) should make everyone happy. I also hope there will be multiple ways to say the same thing. I did not like in Mass Effect or Dragon Age being forced to choose between a "good" option or "bad" option, but neither was a statement I felt like the character I was trying to roleplay would say. That breaks the 4th wall for me too severely, and diminishes my enjoyment. BG1+2 did a really good job of provding four or five ways to say essentially the same thing, with appropriate responses from the NPC if you were kind, mean, etc.
  10. The thing I really liked about dialogue options in BG2 was that there were lots to choose from. Even when they all said more or less the same thing, you got to feel like you were saying it in your characters way, and sometimes that came with consequences. My primary love for the BGs was the depth of NPC interaction that went beyond the Dragon Age (especially DA2) "Talk to me that one time to reveal my quest and then we'll go avenge my family" and expanded to Minsc and Aerie's friendship, Korgan ripping on everyone, Jaheira and Viconia arguing, etc. Having the option to use a dialogue choice with [bluff] is OK, but like previous posters have said, these should be optional, since gamers like me will want to spend time carefully choosing the option that best fits the character they are trying to RP through this experience.
  11. I'd really love to have the option to type in answers. That being said, even the old way with options was pretty memorable. I chuckle to myself every once in a while when I see a riddle and immediately think of an ancient stone face saying "Put your hand in my mouth". The 15-options are a pretty good way to go if we can't type them in, and possibly incorporating some sort of penalty for failed guesses, be it monster summoning, a poison dart, etc.
  12. One of the major motivations for playing different classes in BG2 was the opportunity for a unique class-based experience. As the EE approaches, I find myself thinking more and more about which classes I've yet to see the unique areas and quests for so I can pick a class that will reveal a new part of the game for me. While BG2 did make special areas, they were incorporated into the grander plot. All characters explore Nalia's keep and kill the trolls there, only the fighter-types get to move in and take it over. Same goes the the Thieves' Guild or the Planar Sphere. Those little touches made multiple playthroughs a must for me.
  13. This is definitely a valid concern. Certainly you don't want to see the game experience drastically altered because your three fighter-types take an hour to walk anywhere on their crippled legs. Monte Carlo makes a good point as well though. You can have critical hits that do x2 damage, but a slim chance to have something more serious occur. I think it would heighten the sense of danger and help maintain immersion, as some quality attacks would damage not the imaginary yellow and red stamina/health bars, but actually show up on your character sheet in a meaningful way, and have to be addressed in a way that is both challenging but also rewarding in terms of the storytelling of your character.
  14. Referring to Nonek's post: I like the idea, but it seems slightly impersonal. When someone chops you with a sword, you aren't injured in your overall being, you're injured at the stump where your left arm used to be. Same idea when an arrow goes through your eye. The more I think about it, the more I think this could potentially be done in the game, by incorporating injuries into the character sheet. If your arm is chopped, no weapon in that hand. An eye injury might limit your range, give penalties to charisma, spot, search, etc. An injured leg reduces movement speed and dodge. I think those little touches would do a lot for my feeling of immersion of the game, so I feel like I know where my characters are being hurt, and have my wizard wearing a helmet because he can't afford to lose his other eye. It also could provide some side quests, as the paladin must earn the favor of her diety by protecting a temple from raiders so she can have her arm restored, or the barbarian has to battle the evil in his soul after his sight was restored by the evil priest making a demonic pact on his behalf.
  15. I've always loved the institution of critical hit/failure tables. My gaming group has hatched many home-brewed systems for this in the past, and they've had a number of very interesting and fun to roleplay gaming experiences. When we sit around at the tavern quaffing ale and telling tales, invariably a story about a great crit or a catastrophic fumble comes up. That being said, as awesome as these are for pen-and-paper gaming, they seem like they would be difficult to carry out in the same manner in a cRPG. If your hand was severed, does your sprite lose a hand? In pen-and-paper games, the DM can provide you with a side quest to get revenge or seek out a scroll of regeneration, or to make a pact with an extra-planar being to restore your injury. It seems like these aspects would be hard to replicate in a cRPG experience. It would be a lot of fun to have a somewhat reduced version of this, however. Perhaps a severe injury would prove fatal within a certain time frame if medical/magical care isn't found (I'm cribbing from the provided table here, thanks for posting that by the way!). Priests could perhaps call on a favor from their god at some point in the game and be forced to undertake a quest that progresses the aims of their diety in order to repay them. It's certainly an interesting topic. I'd love to see some variation from the typical x2 dmg crit. It seems like it could be a challenge to make part of the game, but perhaps with the existence of stamina/health it could be worked into the combat system.
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