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I was recalling my last play-through and comparing it to other runs, specifically thinking about which battles were the toughest.

 

I would like to hear everyone's opinion.  Without parsing data, this is my gut-check list, playing on POTD upscaled:

 

Regular battles:

1) Hanging Sepulchers 

I saw another thread on this and it triggered my memory of odd-scaling issues.  I typically hit this at level 7-9 (memory) and I always tread carefully, since the skeletal rogues can gut a non-buffed/non-tank character in 3 hits.  

 

2) Gorecci Street

No matter how proud I am of my 3rd-4th level party, I always approach this zone with caution (southern approach feels safer than northern approach).

 

3) Fampyr battles, without Captain's Banquet buff or select items, this can turn sideways with a charmed (bad roll) DPS character

 

4) Early ship battles (on deck combat), sometimes scales unfavorably below level 7 (opinion only)

 

5) Bog battle, forget the name, but it has the tree in the back, with the group of killer vines and some bog-witch - if you approach from the side it is easier, but head-on this can become messy at a lower level

 

 

Mega-boss battles:

1) Doru - long fight, that is tricky if you want zero deaths in a full party

2) Hauani - positioning and keeping parts separated is key, but can still suffer from unlucky splits

3) Auranic - oddly enough, I had one full party that destroyed her easily and another group, that was stronger through the main game, but struggled keeping everyone alive (without egregious use of potions, scrolls, etc.).

4) Crystal - lots of different tactics to defeat, all are manageable (with a decent group)

 

 

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That goul rush fight in SSS. I'm just too impatient. ;)


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Posted (edited)

Ranked:

1. Gorecci Street pre-digsite XP. It's very hard. I've only ever actually beat it pre-digsite by approaching from the south and using sort of cheesy double-AoE-from-stealth tactics to take out the porch dwellers. Most of the time I wait til I have Aloth and am comfortably level 4 or 5.

 

2. Fights that you are intentionally doing underlevel. I have a few of these in every playthrough because I hate waiting for certain things.

 

3. The Oracle of Wael, Dorudugan, and Auranic. These all sit in the same sort of place to me. The path to victory is obvious enough but actually following that path can be difficult and slip ups are fairly punishing. The actual order on these would be Dorudugan, Auranic, Oracle but they're all close enough to take up one spot on my list.

 

4. Neriscyrlas (without spirit help and at an appropriate level). Same reasons as above but enough easier that it's knocked down a rank. Drops by like a million ranks in TB because it's basically impossible to miss the interrupt window on Llengrath's Safeguard.

 

5. Maerwald. This fight depends on how weak your party is to your party and how well the AI can actually manage your party, of course, so it ranges from slot 5 to not even on the tough fight radar. I give it a higher ranking because it's just about the only fight in the game that I don't think respeccing is a fair tactic - to me it's the same as losing this fight.

 

6. The Ooze and Spider megabosses. The methods to beat these aren't hard to execute but the pure numbers and health bloat on these bosses is enough to push them into the tough zone.

 

7. Any battle with a "puzzle" solution you don't know or are not following. There's quite a few of these. The Digsite Drake is very hard if you don't have a Druid or a Cipher to Charm half the enemies, the Naga in the shallow water at Hasongo if you don't know to use the flooded tunnels to approach them from the west, the Fampyrs if you don't feed your party a Captain's Banquet, etc. I don't really want to qualify these as truly tough, though, because the solution to the "puzzle" makes them a cakewalk (or at the very least not significantly harder than an average fight).

 

I don't think this game is actually very hard, though. I think most of the difficulty comes from being unwilling to change tack or respec. Hard habit to get over because 95% of the content is beatable by just brute forcing the problem.

Edited by Taudis
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Posted (edited)

Gorecci Street is easier with just 2 people as long as your MC is a Cipher. It is how I always play it. This allows you to level up after killing Ilari. Takes a few tries because RNG crits and you're down. Enter from the south, stealth towards Ilari. Kill him and hit level 4. Then do the rest and let them come to you while Eder soaks up damage. It's by no means easy. I have never been able to do it like this with a char that can only do melee. They are simply stronger.

 

For me the hardest fight was the vampire fight on splintered reef if you do not create the distraction. There's just so many enemies and they hit hard and take a long time to take down. Even at level 20 they can faceroll you. Especially if your team isn't optimized.

Edited by AeonsLegend

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The northwestern fampyr crypt with the ancient fampyr sages and others wrecked me a few times, and Splintered Reef can definitely be nasty. 

 

The interior of Bekarna's Observatory if everything pulls is pretty rough. 

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I have to admit, i don't bother with the Gorecci street now. I just enter from the south and stealth straight to the Illari guy or whatever his name is. Pay him the 40cp and everyone else just walks away no fighting needed, free xp before digsite.

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Bekarna's Observatory - the opening fight in the library was harder than the boss fight on the rooftop patio! I couldn't figure out how to not pull all the baddies at once.

 

The even with the distraction, the second fight at Splintered Reef (the one after the pub) is pretty brutal. Before the PoTD tuning, it was a breeze at L16. Now it is tough. It's not even the charming, just the sheer number of enemies.

 

Gorecci St I see as teaching you that fighting isn't always the best choice. Sometimes there is nothing lost by talking your way out of a pickle.

You are weak and inexperienced. I have no problem skipping the fight here.

 

But the hardest (excluding SSS and FS DLC which I have not yet played) was the sayuka druid battle.

 

I'm sure the level at which you approach these fights has a huge impact but it's not totally clear what the intended level is. Generally on PoTD all upscaled, all the hard fights have at least 1 triple red skull and a few triple white. The battles generally feel really intense and satisfying W/ this difficulty.

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Posted (edited)

For Bekarna, focus is really important. Ignore the high hp, high deflection enemies. There's multiple enemies with 60-75 deflection that have low hp. They are the ones debuffing you and buffing their allies and dealing damage to you. Kill them first and the battle can be surprisingly easy. I wouldn't try it before level 14.

Edited by AeonsLegend
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The queen 9nekaza battle with the two teleporting foot monks

 

That kraken in the underwater test tube

 

Calling beraths bluff in helping her find eothas

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The difficulty of certain fights can really change if you are doing turn based or real time with pause.

 

For example, in turn based some ship combats can be extremely brutal if all of the enemies target the same 1-2 people.  It is very possible to lose people before you even get a chance to act.

 

However, turn based mode practically trivializes Hauani because of how much easier it is to ensure disintegrate gets the last hit to prevent it from splitting.

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Posted (edited)

The Oracle of Wael is pretty damn hard imho even if you spamming Meteor Shower scrolls. Those damn Dreambeasts don't die easily!

Edited by Verde

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The queen 9nekaza battle with the two teleporting foot monks

That kraken in the underwater test tube

Calling beraths bluff in helping her find eothas

Oh god, the kraken fight. I have never completed that right the first time around because at least one of my characters end up getting stuck underwater or something. On one playthrough I ended up killing tekehu who was stuck. I had killed the kraken a few times already but somebody always got stuck. I couldn't bear to redo the fight again so I sacrificed tekehu to ondra and was finally able to leave the room. I consoled a couple of the important items he had because I couldn't loot his body. Ugh.

 

This playthrough at least I only got stuck on the first two attempts.

 

That is by far the most emotionally difficult fight for me.

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Posted (edited)
On 3/20/2019 at 9:29 PM, Taudis said:

4. Neriscyrlas (without spirit help and at an appropriate level). Same reasons as above but enough easier that it's knocked down a rank. Drops by like a million ranks in TB because it's basically impossible to miss the interrupt window on Llengrath's Safeguard.

Could you expand on this? I am currently looking for ways to beat her on TB, and my jaw dropped when seeing this. I don't understand the discrepancy, because in my game the cast is instant. Neriscyrlas starts casting, and then next up in initiative window it takes effect. I've tried multiple things to get into that window but nothing. So I don't even get to react to the casting.

In fact, it can cast TWO of them in the same turn, instantly, without the opportunity for you to react.

Edited by Grone

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1 hour ago, Grone said:

Could you expand on this? I am currently looking for ways to beat her on TB, and my jaw dropped when seeing this. I don't understand the discrepancy, because in my game the cast is instant. Neriscyrlas starts casting, and then next up in initiative window it takes effect. I've tried multiple things to get into that window but nothing. So I don't even get to react to the casting.

In fact, it can cast TWO of them in the same turn, instantly, without the opportunity for you to react.

I can't speak for turn-based but Geomancer (Concussive Tranquilizer and Slicken) is her worst enemy.

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1. gorecci street. it's hilarious how this we can agree, unironically, that one of the earliest fights int he game is one of the hardest. 

2. engwithan dig site external fight. i think more people aren't rating this higher because they're used to pulling the mobs into separate groups, which they might not yet be willing to need to do for gorecci street, but if you're not splitting, you can still get wiped out very fast, even using stairs as a chokepoint thanks to Gore and the young drake hitting you with fire aoe.

3. that SSS changeling fight where you all get transformed. I hate this fight. Hate hate hate this fight. Especially because it's really janky in how its implemented. If you have a party of paladins or other classes that have innate passives, it can be real easy, but that just illustrates how messed up this is. It's not difficult now because i've done it enough to know precisely what I need to do to win, but it's a puzzle fight and until you solve the puzzle it's basically impossible, whereas other puzzle fights can let you brute force your way sometimes.

4. Hauani o Whe - you could go the entire fight flawlessly only to mess up at the very end and everything falls apart very rapidly. At least with dorudugan, a properly geared party can almost passively deal its basically-instadeath onslaught. whereas with HoW you have to be actively interrupting and focus-firing.

5. hanging sepulchers - this whole quest is just targeting the wrong level. in no playthrough do I actually play it at the target level. I always deliberately overlevel a bit before attempting it.

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I just started PotD for the first time, and the starting tutorial island was absolutely brutal, especially Gorecci Street. Though it's gotten a lot easier since.

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6 hours ago, thelee said:

1. gorecci street. it's hilarious how this we can agree, unironically, that one of the earliest fights int he game is one of the hardest. 

2. engwithan dig site external fight. i think more people aren't rating this higher because they're used to pulling the mobs into separate groups, which they might not yet be willing to need to do for gorecci street, but if you're not splitting, you can still get wiped out very fast, even using stairs as a chokepoint thanks to Gore and the young drake hitting you with fire aoe.

3. that SSS changeling fight where you all get transformed. I hate this fight. Hate hate hate this fight. Especially because it's really janky in how its implemented. If you have a party of paladins or other classes that have innate passives, it can be real easy, but that just illustrates how messed up this is. It's not difficult now because i've done it enough to know precisely what I need to do to win, but it's a puzzle fight and until you solve the puzzle it's basically impossible, whereas other puzzle fights can let you brute force your way sometimes.

4. Hauani o Whe - you could go the entire fight flawlessly only to mess up at the very end and everything falls apart very rapidly. At least with dorudugan, a properly geared party can almost passively deal its basically-instadeath onslaught. whereas with HoW you have to be actively interrupting and focus-firing.

5. hanging sepulchers - this whole quest is just targeting the wrong level. in no playthrough do I actually play it at the target level. I always deliberately overlevel a bit before attempting it.

Isn't the earliest fights being hardest a function, partially, of how the difficulty levels work in this game?  I suspect that most of the folks commenting on this forum a year+ post-release are playing on Veteran or PotD.  And the flat increases to HP, Defenses, and PEN hit hardest when the base levels are lowest, and when the player is most limited in tools with which to approach an encounter. 

(TBH, I've been sneaking past the looters ever since I made the jump to PotD.  I've long since forgotten whether they have any loot that makes engaging them worth more than bragging rights.)

I'm with you on Hanging Sepulchres.  After past frustrations, waiting to clear the area until after I have a Dismissal in the party is quite satisfying. 

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8 hours ago, thelee said:

 

2. engwithan dig site external fight. i think more people aren't rating this higher because they're used to pulling the mobs into separate groups, which they might not yet be willing to need to do for gorecci street, but if you're not splitting, you can still get wiped out very fast, even using stairs as a chokepoint thanks to Gore and the young drake hitting you with fire aoe.

 

gotta say, we do not have much difficulty with this one. the gunpowder barrels and tent in the southern portion o' the arena floor makes for a nice chokepoint, a chokepoint which explodes.  the wild critters should be able to run around the barrels to get at our party and flank us, but they don't. so we make liberal use o' the handful o' explosives we no doubt have in inventory to simultaneous debuff foes and to set barrels alight. when barrels explode, most foes is killed or hurt bad enough such that they is picked off ez. young drake is kinda ez to kill with all the other critters dead or near dead.  regardless, gunpowder barrels + explosives use = no wipes or even injuries in spite o' many times completing this encounter.

the gorecci street looters, on the other hand, remains problematic for us, but some o' this is due to our irrational stubbornness.  am thinking it is in part 'cause o' our predictable success with the arena dig site which makes us muelish 'bout gorecci. why don't we skip or simple add a couple hirelings?  'cause we can do the dig site without problem, so why the heck is it still so difficult to get this battle right? am finding gorecci is also a bit easier if our mc is a tank. 

HA! Good Fun!


"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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Strangely I've found upscaled Gorecci Street to be easier than upscaled Digsite drake fight. Just food up, sneak from below and put your main char (brute) & Xoti (monk) beside the wizard & Eder (swashie) beside the archer, and you'll win the fight even with no hirelings and full AI control.

Digsite drake fight on the other hand, I have been banging my head against the wall to solve it, even giving up on the game for several days due to it. Of course the easy answer is to get a Druid hireling and just spam Charm Beast. But I don't want to split pull or hire customs or be forced to play a Druid MC, so only yesterday I've finally finished it and it felt so, so good. 

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Ditto on that Splintered Reef fight: excluding megabosses and DLC, it's probably the toughest fight in the base game. Your tank is going to get wrecked by Arcane Dampeners and the spawns prevent you from using ambush tactics - all the while, you're being pummeled by long-range shots. Unfortunately many of my Watchers were too prideful to ask Copperhead for help.

Special shout out to that Bleak Walker fight on top of the Spire of the Soul Seers. It's tough on its own right but with Deadly Deadfire upscaled it can quickly become a nightmare if you don't use proper positioning and utilize line of sight.

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On my recent turn based playthrough, the only fight I wasn’t able to beat was the Dorudugan. The issue comes once again from certain abilities working differently - his AOE attacks hit all at once, without any warning as to were they might hit, massacring my entire party in one attack if my party placement was unlucky. 

I am yet to beat megabosses in RTwP but I feel they are easily the toughest enemies in the game, though it’s mostly due to required metaknowledge. 


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For ambush fights, my personal favorite cheesy tactic is to start the fight by sending in my rogue, who immediately uses Smoke Bomb/Shadowing Beyond as soon as combat starts.  Then he flees back out of range to safety with the party, and the fight resets... with all the ambushers spawned and hanging around to be rounded up and murdered in a controlled fashion via AoE attacks at the REAL start of the fight.  That is, if you're choosing to be bold and dive into it rather than doing split pulls on the would-be ambushers like a sensible person.

Here's a thought to mess up the Fampyrs: equip your tank with Modwyr (or use the Harmony ring, or food, or whatever to be Intellect-immune) and Shimmer Scale with the enchantment that has 50% chance to reflect gaze attacks.  You're still protected if the attack doesn't reflect, and if it does reflect, the fight just got a lot easier.  It's pretty easy to make sure all the gazes go to your tank if you have the rest of the party hang well back with ranged attacks.

 

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