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About ModernModron

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  1. Wow, that's a tough call. I hate the combat system in PoE, and I hated the system in DA:O too. But the two systems are quite different, and I'm not sure which I'd put ahead of the other. On the one hand, DA:O was hopelessly imbalanced, with the magical powers outstripping everything else in terms of variety, and generally in raw power as well. But while PoE has a much better balance between the different class types, the actual combat is a jumbled mess of poorly differentiated powers and that frickin' Engagement system. Frankly, I don't expect replay either game anytime soon. I guess if I had to choose between them I'd go with DA:O by a whisker, but that's mostly because of the better encounter design. Fights felt more varied in that game, even if they were still chores to get through. Obviously, YMMV.
  2. Lying might not be enough. It helps if you use your superior technology to "wow " the natives, so they forget their own invented Gods and believe in your new ones. The Old Gods don't speak into your heads and make statues flame... look, the new ones do! At the quasi-Medieval level of the rest of the world, the natives don't have the resources the Engwithians had, to determine that the created Gods were fake. Something else we don't know (I don't think?) is exactly what happened to make the Engwithains a dead civilization. Maybe most of them entered the God head(s) in some way, as a means of eternal life. So that would be one more reason to go to the trouble of actually creating Gods in some way. There is still much we don't know about the background here. If the silent gods everyone thought existed had kept the savages in-line this long, they ought to keep doing so just fine. Until and unless the savages bring themselves up to the Engiwthans' level, they won't know that the pretend gods don't really exist. And once they do bring themselves up to that level, they shouldn't be concerned by the fact - just like the Engwithans.
  3. I don't see a contradiction, as long as one assumes the Engwithians were a deeply cynical and controlling culture (and they'd have to be, to go about creating Gods from scratch). Maybe they didn't need Gods as a moral compass themselves, but the concept was a useful means of avoiding total chaos in the non-Engwithian world at large; all those savages out there. It wouldn't be the first time a "higher" culture used enforced religious conversion as a convenient tool of controlling "the Other." It's a classic tool of colonialism. If that's all they needed the gods for... why not just lie to the "lesser" savages? Wouldn't that be significantly easier than building fake gods? Surely any culture that could 'prove' there were no gods would also determine that the created gods were fake.
  4. Me neither, that's a great thing. Just not salient to this discussion, because no choice was made. a choice were made. you were oblivious to the choice... possibly willful. HA! Good Fun! It certainly is making a choice when someone says "REMEMBER OTHER FACTIONS WONT WORK WITH YOU" and you say "OK!" You keep saying that, but that never actually happens in game. They say that other factions will be "angry" at you, but they never flat out state that you will be locked out of a future game mechanic just by accepting the quest. Those aren't quite the same thing, especially for more casual gamers that don't have finely tuned meta-game senses. On top of that, as others have pointed out, the actual implementation of choosing a faction is rather clunky. It's entirely possible to accept one of the quests before you even realize there is a power struggle in the city, much less know you'll eventually need to pick sides in said struggle to continue the main plot. Even if the mechanic were perfectly telegraphed, that would still be a bad way to frame a 'choice' for the player. You'd think there would at least be an option to backstab the faction whose quest you accepted before you complete it, but nope, the decision to accept the quest is totally binding.
  5. I think that's a good point worth repeating. PoE is pretty relentlessly grim, and as a result it doesn't take long before everything just blends into one depressing lump. This is reinforced by the lackluster main plotline. The way we learn that we're a Watcher - using our newfound powers to talk with the dead woman on the tree - is fantastic. But the next step with Maerwald was terrible; rather than give me a sense of excitement at new possibilities or a sense of urgency at potential danger, it just confused me about what a Watcher was. The way Maerwald was presented didn't really match what had happened to us thus far, nor wouldt really match what happens later on, either. So the main plot stalled right out of the gate. I was stuck with some vague goals and confusing threats in a dark and gritty world that shrugged off my attempts to make it better. The only things that really interested me at that point were Eder's backstory and the Hollowborn, and there wasn't much I could do to explore those topics at the time. I think that's why a lot of the early game felt more like a chore than like fun, at least to me.
  6. What I understand is the pause system has worked fine for me through all the IE games and continues to do so in PoE - YMMV Given that you continue to argue with them, you know perfectly well that their mileage IS varying. As is mine, for that matter. It's not the end of the world, but I would definitely prefer a way to enter specific "pause" and "unpause" commands beyond just toggling between them.
  7. I've barely even started the game, but this is the sort of thing that really worries me. I don't want to use AoE spells every time I get into combat. One of the nice things about the old BG games was that a lot of the fights were pretty trivial. It set the tone that we were professional adventurers able to handle the lifestyle, and it made fights against mid-range opponents stand out: they could be challenging without being a 'boss' type encounter. But the more 'per encounter' powers the party has, the greater the pressure to balance EVERY encounter around them. That in turn makes all the mundane encounters really, really boring; they require too much micromanaging to steamroller them, but they all feel like the same thing over and over again. That's the big reason I really grew to hate 4ed D&D. So I'm extremely nervous that the 'spiritual successor' to BG seems to have latched onto that system as its central mechanic.
  8. Uh, yeah, the good ole "advance time" feature from... the BG series. Of all the features BG didn't have but we are going to pretend it did, this one is among my favorites! Since you could rest at any time in BG, it was easy to advance time by 8 hours at least.
  9. Well, yes... errr, still no boomerang! Thanks for these, now I'm really going to have to make a character for either the Asami or Korra pictures.
  10. Very stylish! I'll see if I can get them working. No Sokka or Toph, though. (
  11. I'm very disappointed the game doesn't already have this feature. It makes it much harder to tell what a given save game file actually is. Given that intensive replays were a hallmark of the classic BG games, it's a puzzling omission.
  12. In other words, you're saying that their intent is that the DRM version will never ever get another patch. I somehow doubt this is the case; they're clearly going to patch the DRM-free version, so the exact same method they're going to use after launch can be used to ensure that the 1.0 patch is available for players that receive the disk. Hell, some people are suggesting that the intent for wanting to delay is to prevent someone from ripping the game from the disk and putting it up for piracy. Releasing a somewhat non-functional pre-1.0 version to the manufacturer and expecting the players to download a patch that completes it seems like the BEST solution; if the early access version basically won't work, then it doesn't matter if someone leaks it from the factory! The version on the disk could even be basically the whole game as it exists right now, but forced to run the current beta until it gets the 1.0 patch, if they wanted to be fancy about the whole matter (but that would be a lot of work). If the manual or installer says "Go to this URL to get the release patch", or even checks there automatically (which is not a DRM service), then it's the person's fault for not paying attention. This is not an unsolved problem; players used to deal with this before the Steam days, and while Steam and other DRM services fixed the problem conclusively, that doesn't mean the old methods don't work. No, I'm not saying that. Once they have created a DRM free disc, they will also have a way to patch it. The key is that patching will be optional, so the disc itself is a live copy of the game. The copy of the game used to create the discs (which must be created well in advance of the actual release) is the most likely source for pirated copies before the game launches. If Obsidian is really worried about pirated copies, the discs are going to be the point of failure. Remember, the autopatcher wouldn't be running until the game is launched. If priates do get a copy of the game in advance, they would have to play that copy - potential bugs and all. Likewise, if Obsidian is desperate to avoid pirated copies getting out before the official release (and thus harming sales), the problem would be the same. The best way to avoid early piracy is to delay printing DRM-free discs. It's true companies used to take that risk, but that's because they had no choice. Obsidian DOES have a choice, and they've indicated that they would prefer to ship two parcels (or delay the disc release) and lean on digital distribution rather than face the added risk. Not sure that would be my choice, but then I'm not a game developer.
  13. Neat idea. While reading this this thread I was contemplating something similar, a system where merchants would be part of a 'trust' mechanic. Merchants would only buy and sell cheap, mundane items directly. To sell something more important, you'd need to elave it with the merchant and he'd try to sell it for you. If you gave a valuable item to the wrong sort of merchant, he'd just run off with it and you'd be stuck feeling like a fool. But if you gave it to the right sort, you'd eventually sell the item for big bucks (or trade it for something you really need, etc), and you would start to build a relationship with that merchant. The better the relationship, the more the merchant would be willing to help you: loan you money, fence a 'hot' item, hide your family when the stormtroopers come looking for them, those sorts of things. Obviously, it would be a monster task to develop, but if they could pull it off it would make a limited gold supply totally worthwhile. But it would also wind up being a big part of the game, possibly enough to take away from other aspects (like the traditional dungeon crawl bits). So while I'm definitely not opposed to limiting the gold supply, I agree with the people who feel it's not a good thing in and of itself. It has to serve the larger picture. From what I've heard, I'm happy PoE merchants will have unlimited checking accounts.
  14. Have to go with GOG. I have nothing against Steam, but I'd prefer to get a copy that can't be turned off later on. Plus, it can still work if my internet gets disrupted for some reason.
  15. Oops, meant to add that if it turns out to impractical to let people opt out of the 2 shipments, I very much hope Obsidian can split the state value of the whole box between the two shipments properly. Regardless of who pays it, it would be a shame to pay taxes on the same items twice.
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