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Favourite improvement in deadfire? Biggest step back?

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In Greek mythology, the gods are a bunch of capricious, selfish, dilettantes with serious emotional issues. The Trojan War starts because of an incredibly immature quarrel between three goddesses. Why do immensely powerful beings need to be serene and responsible when they’re not going to die and no one can tell them what to do?

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8 hours ago, Boeroer said:

I guess most people don't really distinguish between "I don't like it" and "it is bad". Because if I don't like it then surely there must be something wrong with it. :)

I also think that most people are unfit for judging the quality of writing.

I loathe books like "The Name of the Rose", "L’Homme qui rit" or "La sombra del viento" (still read them though, urgh). But I would'nt say tht they are not well written. 

 

Or would I? ;)

am thinking much o' the xoti hate is baggage folks bring to the character rather than anything wrong with the character. is not poor written. xoti is one o' the characters who has potential for real change. the opportunity for growth is admitted binary, but is nevertheless drastic and meaningful. xoti also makes for an intriguing contrast to durance. equal zealot, but unlike the betrayed priest o' magran, the disciple o' gaun from deadfire is... sunny, at least initial. is no hidden agenda or attempts to manipulate. is no secrets. whatever hypocrisy in xoti is inherent in the teachings o' her faith, 'cause she lives honest and genuine and cheerful in spite o' following a god of reaping.

oh, and she is prophetic accurate. when eothas comes back, his behavior is different. sure, is same old eothas, but he is a metaphorical God of Reaping even if he ain't one in fact. where he goes, he leaves a trail o' soulless husks behind and his ultimate plan has the kith o' eora facing a season o' harvest wherein the wheat will be separated from the chaff. 

the thing is,  a whole lotta folks who play crpgs who do not like organized religion and who has been brought up in a world where faith is a dirty word. religious people is at best naive and obtuse, and at worst dangerous fanatics, yes? 

and yeah, the injection o' a healthy dose o' oklahoma makes xoti seem a bit ridiculous

nevertheless, in spite o' being genuine and pleasant, xoti is the companion who folks most likely instant dislike. 'cause she is religious?

is a shame. those pro-life, midwestern bible thumpers xzar seems to dislike, is 'mongst the most generous people you will ever meet. while they may be against abortion and won't listen to arguments to the contrary, those yokels would also be the folks most likely to take a pregnant teen mother into their home, no questions asked, and give her a place to sleep and food to eat, 'cause such is the christian thing to do. yeah, there is hypocrites pretending to be christian and those folks deserve scorn, but many (most?) is the cliché salt o' the earth which the current generation is in increasing short supply.

most o' the would-be existentialists don't seem to realize when nietzsche observed, "god is dead," it were a lament. 

xoti were written to challenge. am thinking it is telling that a companion who has legit and rare gameplay value and is nice engenders such dislike. 

HA! Good Fun!

ps full disclosure, xoti grated on Gromnir nerves for same reasons she likely annoys others. zealotry. saccharine-sweet. hillbilly. nevertheless, am able to see the value in the character and am recognizing our annoyance is more a flaw in our character and not in hers.

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"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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The best solution to being annoyed by Xoti is to turn her to the dark side.  Evil Xoti is a slasher flick villain: campy-psychotic fun. 

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Maybe... maybe not. I know a lot of people, non-religious and religious (no fanatics though), and none of them decides between "like you" or "dislike you" based on that. But I'm living in a bubble - so maybe it's true in general.

Additionally: Xoti's is not even a real religion. Reactions to that should be a bit softer. She may be zealous, but it's not dominating her. She is a bit ridiculous though.  

Still: if I would be an atheist (I am) and because of that would dislike religious characters/people (I don't) I'd still have to distinguish between "I don't like the character because she is religious" and "she's badly written".

  


Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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Posted (edited)

Favorite:
Load times do not explode in length as you progress further in the game. Seriously. Would significantly amp up my enjoyment of PoE1 if they ever fixed that (is unity bug i think).

Top three runner-ups:
1. Being able to move melee-range characters around without triggering disengagement attacks, so long as they stay within melee range. just such a great quality of life improvement, makes tactical positioning both less absolute, and makes melee combat more fluid.
2. affliction/inspiration system. it's hard to fully express how much of a mess afflictions/buffs were in poe1 and this went a long way into rationalizing all of that, in addition to giving non-priests a way to interact with afflictions.
3. keywording, when done right.
 

Most personally disliked:
Power-level and ability-level scaling. There's merit to it, but man is it super murky, with unintended and inconsistent consequences.

Top three runner-ups:
1. keywording, when done poorly.
2. inversions, when implemented incorrectly. *cough* disposition scaling *cough*. sure you could trivialize grazes in poe1, but at least most players could do the basic math off the top of their head (though poe1 also had a lot of hidden complexity here).
3. bullet sponginess of megabosses and DLC bosses. hard technical fights I like, but please don't force me to repeat the technical aspects over and over and over for tens of minutes for a typical (non-cheesy) party setup (dorudugan is worst offender). I had enough of that when I ran 40-man raids for World of Warcraft.

Edited by thelee
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6 hours ago, Gromnir said:

am thinking much o' the xoti hate is baggage folks bring to the character rather than anything wrong with the character. is not poor written. xoti is one o' the characters who has potential for real change. the opportunity for growth is admitted binary, but is nevertheless drastic and meaningful. xoti also makes for an intriguing contrast to durance. equal zealot, but unlike the betrayed priest o' magran, the disciple o' gaun from deadfire is... sunny, at least initial. is no hidden agenda or attempts to manipulate. is no secrets. whatever hypocrisy in xoti is inherent in the teachings o' her faith, 'cause she lives honest and genuine and cheerful in spite o' following a god of reaping.

oh, and she is prophetic accurate. when eothas comes back, his behavior is different. sure, is same old eothas, but he is a metaphorical God of Reaping even if he ain't one in fact. where he goes, he leaves a trail o' soulless husks behind and his ultimate plan has the kith o' eora facing a season o' harvest wherein the wheat will be separated from the chaff. 

the thing is,  a whole lotta folks who play crpgs who do not like organized religion and who has been brought up in a world where faith is a dirty word. religious people is at best naive and obtuse, and at worst dangerous fanatics, yes? 

and yeah, the injection o' a healthy dose o' oklahoma makes xoti seem a bit ridiculous

nevertheless, in spite o' being genuine and pleasant, xoti is the companion who folks most likely instant dislike. 'cause she is religious?

is a shame. those pro-life, midwestern bible thumpers xzar seems to dislike, is 'mongst the most generous people you will ever meet. while they may be against abortion and won't listen to arguments to the contrary, those yokels would also be the folks most likely to take a pregnant teen mother into their home, no questions asked, and give her a place to sleep and food to eat, 'cause such is the christian thing to do. yeah, there is hypocrites pretending to be christian and those folks deserve scorn, but many (most?) is the cliché salt o' the earth which the current generation is in increasing short supply.

most o' the would-be existentialists don't seem to realize when nietzsche observed, "god is dead," it were a lament. 

xoti were written to challenge. am thinking it is telling that a companion who has legit and rare gameplay value and is nice engenders such dislike. 

HA! Good Fun!

ps full disclosure, xoti grated on Gromnir nerves for same reasons she likely annoys others. zealotry. saccharine-sweet. hillbilly. nevertheless, am able to see the value in the character and am recognizing our annoyance is more a flaw in our character and not in hers.

You've given me something to think about maybe I'll give her another chance.


nowt

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On 5/27/2019 at 12:15 PM, xzar_monty said:

Why is Xoti not well written?  Doesn't she rather well represent a particular kind of religious zealot (say, a North American foaming-at-the-mouth-abortion-campaigner who is so set in their ways that objective facts simply don't register)? I agree that she is unlikeable and foolish - but not well written? Why?

Strongly agreed with this sentiment. I think Xoti's Watcher romance and Eder romance are written poorly, but then again, so are pretty much all the romances in the game imo. However, her character outside of that is great, and is an interesting representation of priests as kind of madmen, which is consistent with Durance, as well as being a strong break from the typical D&D good-god priest paragons of justice.

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9 hours ago, Enoch said:

The best solution to being annoyed by Xoti is to turn her to the dark side.  Evil Xoti is a slasher flick villain: campy-psychotic fun. 

deadfire xoti ends in much different places depending on how interact with the character.  if there were to be a poe3, is hard to imagine bringing back xoti as a full companion, though we would applaud the effort. would be functional writing two different characters and no pallegina gymnastics would be satisfactory in creating a unified startpoint equal plausible for campy-psychotic xoti to share with her mirror-universe twin. 

would be fantastic if obsidian took the effort to keep both xotis as companions, but given her lack o' popularity we don't see as likely. 

...

at this point it might be more than a bit presumptuous to assume a poe3 into existence. moot.

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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I think the biggest feature improvements in Deadfire were the AI scripting system and multiclassing.

The AI scripting system was robust enough to handle most battles (the megabosses are the main exception here). If there is another isometric real time with pause Pillars game, I would like to see the system expanded a bit, with more conditions like targeting specific characters, responding to specific keywords, weapon slots, and status effects. 

Multiclassing is pretty great as is. I think the only major area multiclassing could be improved is class-specific trinkets. In Deadfire, wizards are generally considered to be one of the best classes to do a multiclass with due to grimoires, as grimoires provide 14 free abilities to a multiclass character and they can be swapped out with ease. 

I think that the way grimoires interact with multiclassing shows how trinkets could be used to allow further customization of multiclass builds. One of the main criticisms of priests and druids in Deadfire is the high opportunity cost of investing in situational spells. While those classes each receive one bonus ability per power level, the classes could be brought up to par with wizards via class-specific trinkets that grant one additional ability per power level as well as some minor tweak or buff to their class specific ability, e.g., the Fingerbone of St. Waidwen could alter Holy Radiance to Blind enemies, or a Vithrack Totem could grant a special Spider transformation when spirit-shifting. Other classes could receive trinkets that play into a particular class’s themes like weapon mastery for fighters. 

Thus, trinkets could be used to help flesh out more niche builds, and allow players to place further emphasis on one side of a multiclass combination. However, this approach would come at the risk of loot bloat depending on the scarcity of trinkets, as well as balancing any persistent secondary effects. I think both concerns could be mitigated by either upping the scarcity of these trinkets, or making the majority of trinkets rather humdrum with a few outliers ala the unique grimoires.

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17 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

One of the distinguishing characteristics of an immortal or at least very long-living deity should be a certain dignity and quiet calm. It just follows logically: if you've got eons of time on your side, you will have experienced just about everything, and there is never any reason to lose your temper or get hasty.

You might think so, but historically that's not the case with quite a lot of pantheons of gods. Most gods are just as petty and prone to infighting, temper tantrums, jealousy, etc. as human beings, and in the case of PoE this is even more logical. Considering how the gods came to be and what the whole point of them is, there's *no* reason for them to be wiser, more dignified, or calmer than Kith.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, DozingDragon said:

Multiclassing is pretty great as is. I think the only major area multiclassing could be improved is class-specific trinkets. In Deadfire, wizards are generally considered to be one of the best classes to do a multiclass with due to grimoires, as grimoires provide 14 free abilities to a multiclass character and they can be swapped out with ease. 

I think that the way grimoires interact with multiclassing shows how trinkets could be used to allow further customization of multiclass builds. One of the main criticisms of priests and druids in Deadfire is the high opportunity cost of investing in situational spells. While those classes each receive one bonus ability per power level, the classes could be brought up to par with wizards via class-specific trinkets that grant one additional ability per power level as well as some minor tweak or buff to their class specific ability, e.g., the Fingerbone of St. Waidwen could alter Holy Radiance to Blind enemies, or a Vithrack Totem could grant a special Spider transformation when spirit-shifting. Other classes could receive trinkets that play into a particular class’s themes like weapon mastery for fighters. 

Thus, trinkets could be used to help flesh out more niche builds, and allow players to place further emphasis on one side of a multiclass combination. However, this approach would come at the risk of loot bloat depending on the scarcity of trinkets, as well as balancing any persistent secondary effects. I think both concerns could be mitigated by either upping the scarcity of these trinkets, or making the majority of trinkets rather humdrum with a few outliers ala the unique grimoires.

We are doing that with the upcoming "Community Patch" (it's basically a mod) which not only fixes some leftover bugs (as long as fixable by modding), polishes some abilities (includes mild buffs and also nerfs, based on a community poll), adds unique icons for all passive abilities but also will introduce some trinkets for priests and druids (which you'll be able to get rel. early in the game). And while will be based on grimoire mechanics, they don't give the exact same bonuses (+2 spells per PL - since both classes already gain a bonus spell per PL) but can grant a broader variety of bonuses such as +Power Level for certain keywords, some bonus spells (fitting the theme of the trinket - e.g. prayerbook) and so on. More about that in the "Deadfire Polishing" threads (discussion thread and poll).

Those things will be spread out to seperate mods though (basic polishing, extended polishing, passive icons, trinkets...) so that you can decide what you want to use and what not.

Edited by Boeroer
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5 hours ago, Katarack21 said:

You might think so, but historically that's not the case with quite a lot of pantheons of gods. Most gods are just as petty and prone to infighting, temper tantrums, jealousy, etc. as human beings, and in the case of PoE this is even more logical. Considering how the gods came to be and what the whole point of them is, there's *no* reason for them to be wiser, more dignified, or calmer than Kith.

 

Actually, I disagree with this, simply because of the amount of time they have on their side. There'd be nothing wrong if they were just obstinate in their ways and passionate in their dealings, but the way they resemble a bunch of teenagers is a bit embarrassing from the writers' point of view.

 

For instance, Arkemyr is mere mortal, but he's got more wit than all the gods put together. Arkemyr is not particularly witty as a character (although there's nothing wrong with him), but he beats all the gods hands down when it comes to presence, character and poise. He shouldn't, in my view. (It is, of course, perfectly fine if you don't agree with this.)

 

The silliness of the gods is probably exacerbated by the tone of the narrator which strongly suggests drama, grandeur and power (surely you would agree with this point?), but then the gods themselves are nothing but a bunch of immature bickerers.

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10 hours ago, Gromnir said:

deadfire xoti ends in much different places depending on how interact with the character.  if there were to be a poe3, is hard to imagine bringing back xoti as a full companion, though we would applaud the effort. would be functional writing two different characters and no pallegina gymnastics would be satisfactory in creating a unified startpoint equal plausible for campy-psychotic xoti to share with her mirror-universe twin.

Well, many companions in PoE1 ended up as different people at the end of the adventure, and Deadfire simply used a hammer to straight out any unique changes and create a bland middle ground for each of the 3 returning companions. Hopefully, they wouldn’t do anything like that for PoE3. I don’t think that creating a companions with two different content packs to be faithful to expected reactivity is a necessary thing to do. I would be happier with a smaller cameo, which will reflect her journey in the direction we set her on in PoE3. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

 

Actually, I disagree with this, simply because of the amount of time they have on their side. There'd be nothing wrong if they were just obstinate in their ways and passionate in their dealings, but the way they resemble a bunch of teenagers is a bit embarrassing from the writers' point of view.

 

For instance, Arkemyr is mere mortal, but he's got more wit than all the gods put together. Arkemyr is not particularly witty as a character (although there's nothing wrong with him), but he beats all the gods hands down when it comes to presence, character and poise. He shouldn't, in my view. (It is, of course, perfectly fine if you don't agree with this.)

 

The silliness of the gods is probably exacerbated by the tone of the narrator which strongly suggests drama, grandeur and power (surely you would agree with this point?), but then the gods themselves are nothing but a bunch of immature bickerers.

Refer you to my post re the Greek gods. Tremendously powerful, yet tremendously petty. The same could also apply to the Norse pantheon and probably a bunch of others. There’s plenty of support for stating that humans have historically seen their gods as just as flawed as any other person, rather than viewing them as beings of great reason and serenity.

Edited by Rooksx

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You disregard context. I'm quite familiar with the Greek pantheon (and anyone who isn't could read Mythos by Stephen Fry, for example, as it's a really interesting presentation of the theme).

 

The crucial context is the history of the gods. They wanted to end an era of devastating conflicts, and they perfected the science of soul-making. Both of these require determination and focus to such an extent that their behavior in the game is not consistent with it.

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Katarack21 said:

You might think so, but historically that's not the case with quite a lot of pantheons of gods. Most gods are just as petty and prone to infighting, temper tantrums, jealousy, etc. as human beings, and in the case of PoE this is even more logical. Considering how the gods came to be and what the whole point of them is, there's *no* reason for them to be wiser, more dignified, or calmer than Kith.

I'll side with xzar_monty on the question of gods' pettiness. The gods of our mythology are imaginary gods, projected after human's pettiness. Pillars gods are real in the game's world. They have no reason to be as petty as Kith (or humans) are. This is a weakness in the writing of the game.

Edited by wih

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Calm, contemplative, reasonable gods sounds very boring. I’m glad that the gods in PoE2 had more personality than in the first game.

IIRC, the Engwithans intended the pantheon they created to hold diverse, often opposing views. Their gods did not necessarily share the high-minded ideals of their creators or unity of purpose. Conflict was intrinsic from the start given that Woedica was placed in charge. There isn’t justification within the context of the game for insisting that they should be more sensible.

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That's the issue i think Xzar is saying, they were too different from they way they were in the first game, thus it's one of the reasons it's a step back for him. 

I really wish there was more to talk to party members about on the boat. You can barely ask them anything, it felt like there was a lot more to talk about with companions in the first game. I haven't played the first in a long time but from what I recall...


nowt

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2 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

The crucial context is the history of the gods. They wanted to end an era of devastating conflicts, and they perfected the science of soul-making. Both of these require determination and focus to such an extent that their behavior in the game is not consistent with it.

The Engwithans aren't the gods.


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Sure they are. Didn't you get the memo?


Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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5 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

You disregard context. I'm quite familiar with the Greek pantheon (and anyone who isn't could read Mythos by Stephen Fry, for example, as it's a really interesting presentation of the theme).

 

The crucial context is the history of the gods. They wanted to end an era of devastating conflicts, and they perfected the science of soul-making. Both of these require determination and focus to such an extent that their behavior in the game is not consistent with it.


Right, but that's the thing. The gods are as petty and flawed as the Engwithans...

 

Spoiler

because the gods are not Gods, they are just constructs made by flawed mortals, and no matter the purity of those mortals goals (debatable) they are just as flawed as the mortals that made them. They are the incarnation of Engwithan *ideals*, and those *ideals* were flawed. There is no reason that soul constructs made by mortal beings should be wiser or calmer than the mortals that engineered them.

 

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3 hours ago, daven said:

That's the issue i think Xzar is saying, they were too different from they way they were in the first game, thus it's one of the reasons it's a step back for him. 

I really wish there was more to talk to party members about on the boat. You can barely ask them anything, it felt like there was a lot more to talk about with companions in the first game. I haven't played the first in a long time but from what I recall...

Well, they are not different then in PoE1. The difference is that they talk to PC more, which does feel a bit contrived I think. They are really quick to invite Watcher to their domain and "accidentaly" share cosmic details. I dunno, maybe they really like showing off to mortals and someone knowing their true nature makes for a rare opportunity to vent:-). As far as pettyness... I think it was quite present before. The backstory of White March is all about a god using sledgehammers to solve a problem and and other disagreeing with her. 

There was much much more 1 on 1 companion talk in PoE1. Which I do and don't miss. It wrecked a pacing really really badly. You meet a new companion: spend next 15 minutes talking to him/her. At the same time it made for some pretty good reading. PoE2 relience of companions reacting to things around them is good, I think, but Obsidian would need to figure out how to develop characters and further their arcs through it, rather then constantly reinforcing things we already know about the characters.

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Posted (edited)

I can only think of one time Xoti really got on my nerves ...and it was at Ashen Maw - one line of hers really grated but otherwise I appreciated her simplicity and deadly naivete.  As for the gods - I could see some more sinister qualities as a way to introduce a darker storyline, but I think they intentionally stepped away from morbid world view of POE1 (which I liked not sure what that says about me).  I really enjoyed my talks with Eothas, I liked what they did with Beast of Winter, I don't think I ever really understood Galawain, but I wasn't playing a druid either who loves nature so why would I?  As for the other interactions - I did like to see how they aligned somewhat on a moral plane with all the grey areas, and I like the lore so it was always a bonus to play around with different answers in the interactions.  All in all good fun.

All of them compared to Woedica from POE1 seem pretty tame.  Except Skaen ... he reminds me of Bane or Bhaal ...

Edit:  Something to be said about how they compare to the AD&D gods from the Forgotten Realms, I think much of their interactions took inspiration from D&D.

Edited by bringingyouthefuture

“How do you 'accidentally' kill a nobleman in his own mansion?"

"With a knife in the chest. Or, rather, a pair of knives in the chest...”

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Skaen doesn't really remind me of Bhaal at all. Bhaal was an extreme authoritarian whose desire was to conquer everything and rule it with an iron fist because he felt he was superior to everyone and everything else.

Skaen is more of a "pay evil unto evil" creature. He's bad, no question--cruel, vicious, etc. But he directs most of those things towards people like Bhaal while *pretending* to be on their side. His whole deal is to be the most subservient yes-man in the universe while holding all of your hatred and rage inside, and then strike at the moment of their greatest vulnerability.

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