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About ArkhanTheBlack

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  1. Well "evil" means egoistic and ruthless and not beeing a comic super villian. Every rpg that offers evil choices seems to forget that. Evil parties are the most absurd thing ever, a group of 6 egocentric selflloving sociopath wouldnt be able to form something like a adventurous party in the first place. I wouldn't necessarily say that an egoistic and ruthless person is evil. In a harsh and cruel environment, this can just be a requirement for a survivor. I consider true evil more along the lines of a sadistic serial killer who kills just for the lust of slaughter and causing pain and suffering. And such people unfortunately exist. Comic book villains are usually just school boys compared to such monsters.
  2. What the **** is wrong with sex cards? They were a fun little gag meant to stir people's desire to collect things and to give some nice visual feedback for the romps in the hay the game offered. And **** had nothing to do with 'romance'. (Unless you consider casual sex romance, of course.) Women were just treated as obedient and willing sex objects in the Witcher. He more less just had to open his fly and they all came from a distance of 5 miles crawling to him, begging to give him fellatio. I was almost surprised that he didn't have an ability tree for his third sword.
  3. I envy your supernatural abilities to know that certain story parts were not well done without even having played them. And the sex cards in The Witcher were probably the biggest disgrace to romance themes I've ever seen in an RPG. You almost can't sink lower than that. The most ridiculous story parts are usually the evil routes anyway. I remember countless times when I thought: If I'd truly be 'evil' or just had 'common sense', I wouldn't face the big super villain and just pack my bag full of gold and travel to the next continent and live a life in wealth or just switch sides. Traditional campaigns against the great evil usually require a particular strong sense of morals to just stick to it and risk your life day by day against all odds of survival. A writer therefore has pretty much already given up on any realism if he includes evil paths. 'Gray' options like "Don't help X because it's too risky." are much more realistic. Unfortunately, most writers just think in black and white don't consider the long-term consequences of truly evil choices. That's not to say it's impossible, but if you really want to make it authentic, you almost have to write a separate campaign for it. Romances are just optional 'side dishes' that usually don't have a lot of influence on the main story. Relationships are just normal, and nobody cares about them. But people do care if you start slaughtering the innocent, rape the women, kill their children etc. In some game I've butchered whole cities and was still celebrated as the big hero. (In my defence, it was just a misunderstanding...) I still support evil paths and choices because at least I have the choices and the choice to be 'good' was mine. If we start to expect full realism with all choices, we'll just end up with predefined characters and no freedom at all. I think players have to bring a bit of story tolerance with them if they want games with lots of freedom and choices.
  4. Yeah, I fully agree, it would have been very nice of them to write it in their Kickstarter campaign. Since they mentioned Baldur's Gate almost half a dozen times in it, it might have been an important detail since those were an essential part of what gave Baldur's Gate its depth. But I think we all know why they didn't do it, don't we? I've also backed other RPG's on Kickstarter that don't have romances and I'm fine with that. But those at least didn't mention Baldur's Gate as their great inspiration in almost every second sentence. I can live without romances but I don't like to get lied to even if it's not a direct one. They are certainly clever. They didn't go into details so they were completely free to throw every feature out that made those games so special. I wonder why they didn't write NWN2 in their Kickstarter campaign. Maybe because it wasn't that great?! Instead they mentioned other games they didn't made themselves. Oh yeah, some of the people were apparently part of it. But I wonder if they were involved in the important parts since I didn't see a lot of those 'qualities' in NWN2, Alpha Protocol or one of their other flops. Yeah I know Chris Avellone was one the top guys. Well, 'was', just like Peter Molyneux once 'was' a great game designer. I've already seen Obsidian's 'depth' in their previous titles, so I don't expect all to much. It was just a glimmer of hope to revive the old era anyway. I should have known that Obsidian doesn't have what it takes for that. Anyway, they were clever and tricked a lot of old BG fans who like romances into supporting them. They got the money and should be happy with that, let's leave it at that. I won't give them an opportunity to trick me again.
  5. I guess I'm a bit late to the party since I just found out that the romances were discarded. Well, considering that I backed the title mostly because I believed the lies about getting an experience like BG2, I'm not particularly amused. There was a lot of cool stuff in BG/BG2 like the talking sword, Minsk and his hamster, the Beholder, etc. but the thing that made it really special were mostly the romances since they touched me on an emotional level. I don't need a PoE just to get another run of the mill Kill & Loot game with a bit more text and a slightly more complex set of rules. I can get those by the dozens and in AAA quality. PoE was supposed to give me freedom and a more personal and emotional experience than Diablo & Co. They wouldn't have to be perfect, I have a very good 'imagination'. The game won't be perfect anyway, or does anyone really believe that the given text will always fit to every race & class combination?! I certainly don't. I understand that the writers don't like to write romances. They are *embarrassing*, the whole stuff about *feelings* and even worse, the great evil that even surpasses Lovecraft's Great Old Ones by miles, the forbidden word that starts with 's' and ends with 'x' and has three letters. Writing about *that* is almost heresy on satanic level of course for the typical RPG writer. It's so much easier to write about the great evil that threatens the land, pathetic speeches, a few amusing jokes here and there while letting the player create huge piles of dead corpses in the name of some mysterious 'greater good' nobody really gives a damn about because there's no personal connection to it. Sure, it will certainly a nice, amusing hack & slay game, but I really hope they will NEVER, EVER again claim that this will be an experience comparable to Baldur's Gate, because it most certainly won't. I wasn't particular thrilled with Bioware's latest titles, but compared to the disappointments Obsidian brought me with NWN2, DS3 and now this, they are still angels. I will never support Obsidian again.
  6. The skill system is usually the fundament of a class system just like in D&D where every class can spend some skill points at level up. The skill system in Fallout was fun, but it's flawed in comparison to class systems that are based on skill systems like in D&D. A fighter class in D&D allows to spend less skill points at a level up than a rogue for example. That represents the fact that the fighter has to spend a lot of (usually not visible) time training so he doesn't loose his physical fitness and combat skills. The pure skill system completely ignores the fact that existing skills have to be trained to keep them up to their current level. A fighter who suddenly starts studying for months and ignores his daily fighter training in this time will be in for a huge surprise if he starts training again or gets in a fight after that time. I think everyone who goes jogging regularly and starts training again after a long winter break knows exatly what I mean. But I have to admid, the pure skill system would be a dream for reality: I'd never forget what I learned in school and university, keep the best fitness level I ever had forever. It's just great. Unfortunately it doesn't work that way. D&D system surely isn't perfect, but it at least considers such fundamental things like that.
  7. I think that's they key difference in our opinions. The typical mage archetype goes pretty much back to Gandalf in Lord of the Rings. However, a wizard in Lord of the Rings is a super human being far beyond human powers. While certainly not every mage in fantasy RPG's have the powers of a Gandalf or Saruman, they are still exceptional. I think most people would agree that in a typical fantasy world an army of 1000 soldiers backed by 20 mages sounds kind of plausible. Even in D&D a mage is special. Even a simple farmer, bandit, etc. can use weapons, but I've rarly seen simple farmers and bandits casting spells. So, in principal not the fighter class is broken, the mage class is. I'm not the biggest fan of Dragon Age, but they were at least aware of exactly this problem. Their whole templar class needs lyrium to be able to keep up with the mages. Basic fighters are clearly not equal to mages in Dragon Age. Mages are considered extremely dangerous beings. Bioware really showed some brain power here. Though the excecution was sometimes pretty poor with human fighter 'bosses' having more hit points than an Imperial Super Star Destroyer. Sometimes I could only shake my had because the combat situations got simply too rediculous. Yes, I think that's the way it should be. I never played Everquest 2, but I think they have a very logical class concept. You start with simple base classes like fighter, rogue, mage and priest which can then evolve to more specialized and powerful classes like Paladin, Assassin etc. which also require certain prerequisites that have to be fullfilled. Though mage class is still too high in my opinion, they should start with adept, alchemist or something like that. D&D also tried something like that with the prestige classes, but since you don't have to choose them to get more powerful I still consider it flawed. A level 20+ fighter is still almost a demi god without any explanation why. But the same logic flaw applies to all non magic classes, so it's not a fighter specific problem. I think my current conclusion to the PE class system ist that the classes are too uneven. Paladin should be a figher class specialisation and the mage classes should evolve from priest/alchemist/adept base classes.
  8. And what about it? Persian 'Immortals', roman 'Pretorians' or medieval 'Knights' were mostly just the rich class of warriors. No special skills, just higher social standing and special education and equipment. And pretty much all mage/priest classes are restricted classes and far from normal. Even in classic high fantasy worls spell casting powers are NOT normal. Even a pretorian, sword master, whatever would be Joe Normal² in comparison to a mage class. Therefore the whole concept of making normal classes like fighter equal to special classes like mage is complete nonsense. Well okay, then the consequences should be that you're just 'normal'. Therefore no super human powers, no killing of big monsters and dragons. You meet more than two opponents means you're most likely dead. You're hit by a fire ball you're dead. You're going against a mage, you're most likely dead except you try to shoot him with a bow before he casts a spell. Yes, that's something I can agree with. A Paladin is pretty much a 'chosen' warrior. Yes, since I'm one of the rare people who thinks there should be some common sense in a fantasy world. Your second sentence has the opposite meaning of your first sentence. You're aware of that?! Since you obviously think fighters are just as 'normal' as mages I think it's you who didn't think things through. It would also be nice if you could discuss things without insulting others like a kid. It's okay to have a different opinion, but I'd like to keep the discussion 'civilized' if you understand the meaning of that.
  9. For me the typical Paladin is pretty much my favourite warrior class since it has a strong historical background (Crusaders) and is the most believable since he's supposed to have some magical powers to increase his fighting strength. Since RPG parties usually develop in a bunch of demi gods capable of slaying entire countries by themselves Paladins at least have some logical background explaining there super human powers. They are like mages who put their magic powers into melee combat instead of spell casting. On the other side, I really hate fighter and barbarian classes. The fighter is pretty much a Joe Normal soldier and the barbarian a Joe Normal savage. Usually they are not supposed to have magical powers, but for some reason they usually develop into superhuman slaughter machines able to wipe out entire armies on their own. And the best thing about those classes it that the 'rules' only apply to the protagonist, his companions and certain 'boss opponents'. Why do the fighters in a typical army or the city guard don't have such super human powers? They train every day and are often more battle hardened veterans like the protagonist. I think the Paladin is fine but I'd really like Obsidian to replace the fighter and barbarian classes with something more believable. For example the Barbarian class could be made a Berserker who is able to use shamanic powers. That would explain why not every savage turns into a demi god after a while. Fighter is more difficult, since they usually have no special background or education at all except "Fighters are men and women trained to use a wide variety of traditional weapons in brutal combat." is nowadays considered an accurate description of a class. So the other warrior classes are not trained to use a wide variety of traditional weapons in brutal combat?! I wonder... I think they should remove the class or replace it with something more believable. Maybe Warlord, Sword Master, Chosen One, Pretorian, whatever, just SOMETHING that isn't your Joe Normal city guard or soldier you usually meet (and kill) in every fantasy RPG by the thousands.
  10. I think this is a topic that shouldn't taken lightly since P:E will most likely focus a lot on dialogs with NPC's. I consider decent character expressions a very important part of those dialog interactions. At least important NPC's should have different expressions, either via different character portraits or 3D heads. Though 3D heads only work if they are good which was NOT the case in NWN2 but in Dragon Age (especially with beauty mod) or Vampire Bloodlines. I also wonder who came up with this nonesense that different expressions are an JRPG thing. Fallout had fullscreen faces ages ago and most games with 3D engines have it those days. They should at least make portraits with different expressions for important characters.
  11. Why? At least Paladin Alexander Anderson is cerainly one of the more memorable villains. Watching Anderson and Alucard chopping up a whole train while fighting each other kind of never gets old. What a badass!
  12. From movies, good old Darth Vader and Hannibal Lector comes to mind. Castor Troy from Face / Off was also pretty cool. From games I'd say Gonzō Azai from G-senjou no Maou visual novel scared the hell out of me. Dr. Mortis from Stefan Gagnes Excrucio Eternum mod for Neverwinter Nights was also brilliant. That's pretty much all I can remember. In general game villains suck the most.
  13. As much as I like Jeremy Soule, I agree with another poster that he's a bit overused at the moment since he's already doing the music for the Elder Scrolls and Guild Wars AAA RPG franchises. I still wouldn't complain though, but I think he's probably the most expensive composer to get. Mark Morgan made one of the best sound tracks ever for Fallout 1 & 2, but I'm not really sure how his music would be for a classic fantasy RPG. Torment soundtrack was good and fitting but not as consistent as the Fallout soundtrack. Same with Jesper Kyd, his Assassins Creed soundtrack was impressive, but I don't know his vision for a classic fantasy RPG. If I would have a wish free, I'd choose Two Steps from Hell. The team around Nick Phoenix und Thomas J. Bergersen currently dominate the scene of trailer music. They are the only composers I know, that reach or even exceed the class of Soule if it comes to classical music. Though Howard Shores LotR soundtrack was amazing too, and Paul Romero and Rob Kings Heroes of Might and Magic soundtrack is still one of the best I ever heard. What I heard from Justin Bell was good so far (PE Trailer), but I don't know enough of his music to make a clear pro or con statement.
  14. Enlighten me, which western RPG (Japanese Eroges might be a different story...) offers a vampire romance, since unfortunately I don't know even one? Vampire Bloodlines is the only RPG I know that really offered some serious vampire roleplaying, but it didn't have a real romance. Not sure about the first part though since I never played it. And are human romances in RPG's considered 'exceptional' nowadays?! Even human-elve relationships are more autodated than vampire ones. In movies and books it's a different story though, but human-human relationsships are still the most 'generic' relationships by a distance. Does that make them bad? No, I don't think so.
  15. The nameless one is more or less a zombie, since he looks like one and is pretty much undead. The main difference is that he's not mindless. If the game defines the protagonist as such, it should face the consequences. And that means that he can't be prince charming and flirting around like Gerald in the Witcher. There's definitely a deep friendship possible, but a romance requires some kind of sexual attraction. And I think the sexual attraction of a person that looks like a zombie is so low that the 'partner' must be pretty sick in the mind to get attracted to someone like that. At least for an (almost) normal girl. Well the Succubus might be turned on by something like that. But I'm not sure If I would attracted to a girl that gets off from having hot nights with zombies. I think the dialog was just written to please the player. But it's actually pretty bad roleplaying in my opinion. They should have chosen a vampire and not a zombie if they wanted romances. Nothing against that. It's a kind of harmony. Both are the same. Like two horses doing it or two humans doing is natural, but horse + human is ughhh...
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