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On 12/6/2020 at 6:44 AM, Boeroer said:

Sven Vince himself pointed out that after looking at telemetrics the overlap of Divinity and PoE players is rather small.

I think Sven said the matched somewhere around 40% which is tiny considering the steam pages for both franchises say they both offer the same thing.

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The complete lack of marketing has to be No. 1. I don't recall seeing an ad anywhere.

I originally thought that the Baldur's Gate successor genre was running out of steam since DAO started it, but Pathfinder Kingmaker did really well, so I doubt that is it.

The game is so badly optimized that I think word of mouth turned a lot of people off. I still runs like garbage today, and has been abandoned by the devs. The load times were ridiculous. I pretty much try to avoid Queen's Berth at every opportunity, because I don't want to sit through a five minute loading screen every time I exit a building. The vast quantity of loading screens in general. By all accounts, the console port is even worse.

Even if it had sold better, the game was over-budgeted. I don't know how much they paid Mercer and friends to hang out, but it was too much. Not sure why they threw this much money at a niche product, and expected to make a profit. For all they spent, the game doesn't work nearly as good as the budget would indicate.

That said, I love the game despite the flaws. I prefer it to DOS2, and liked it better than Kingmaker, at least until Kingmaker got patched up.

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14 hours ago, AFA said:

Not sure why they threw this much money at a niche product, and expected to make a profit. For all they spent, the game doesn't work nearly as good as the budget would indicate.

You should watch Josh Sawyer's Deadfire post mortem talk maybe. He explains why they thought Deadfire would sell well and why expensive stuff like Full VO was added.

The game runs totally fine with me and I don't have that impressive hardware. I use an SSD though. Loading screens are like 10 secs. The budget had no impact on the underlying framework which is Unity3D. It's not known for its stellar performance in the first place. So I guess there wasn't that much to be done. Creating a massive game with a framework that's best for small titles and prototyping may have revealed the limitations of said framework too well. 

Edited by Boeroer
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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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I was also going to point out that the argument that the game "runs like garbage" simply isn't true. It's almost certainly a function of a certain player's system being dated and/or badly configured. As a general statement, there's no way it's even close to being true.

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It's not bad on my machine (Linux by the way) - but compared to other contemporary games it is really not the most smoothly running game there is, especially if you are playing for too long (some cache runs full then, player log file becomes enormously big which takes a big toll on IO) or frame rates start to drop once you have a lot of VFX going on at the same time (like lots of lightning or fire effects or stuff like Mirrored Images etc.). The first problem you can reset by restarting the game every once in a while (not great but works) but the latter is not really solvable unless you skip VFX-heavy stuff.

Compared to PoE the loading times are really short for me. :)
 

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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i would add that the deadfire approach to maps results in truly beautiful environments and ages very well, but is also extremely hard to optimize. pathfinder: kingmaker has load screens too, but because it's all polygons and reused texture assets it's easier to stream and optimize loads versus unpacking gigantic images so the long tail of slow loads for a game like p:k is shorter than deadfire.

that being said, if I/O is the problem, then an SSD (or even bettern an nvme drive) basically erases it. I had an SSD (later an nvme) and never had a loading screen complaint, even back when I was just playing on my budget CPU or a very underpowered macbook. by contrast, even with nvme, pillars 1 would get such bloated load screen times that i basically don't bother to play it anymore because my time is precious. so in this respect, i think the programmers did manage to make deadfire pretty well-optimized, but because of the nature of the game there are some hard (and hardware) limits on what they can do.

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  • 3 weeks later...

PoE 1 is a BIG reason why 2 sold bad.
That and probably lack of publicity creating hype for 2.
IMO, that is ^^

I'm a lover of isometric and RTS games.
Still finishing PoE1. First started a playthrough some time after it came out (wayy back), but with talks of expansion I dropped and waited, now finally came back to play both 1 and 2.

PoE1 is nice in general design and portraying its story/fantasy setting to the player, there's more to like than to dislike but...
Mechanically the game is a convoluted mess, wich is scary after so many patches and couple expansions =X
Nice concepts and complexion but SOOO little room for the player to cope/adjust amidst a playthrough, and most people won't look favorably to replay/restart a game this long.

Items should be able to have their custom (player added) enchants both removed or replaced by others from same weight category. Plus some ingredients are too rare/hard to acquire.
Way too many stuff lacking detailed infos and require LOTS of researching in google or in-game testing to find out how/when it works effectively and what stacks/doesn't.
To make matters truly worse, gotta retrain party every couple levels to cope with optimization and newfound powers/items. Re-training characters at taverns/Caed Nua should be free of cost to remedy the issue a bit.
Basically the game requires tons of meta knowledge and trial/error, leaving little room for the player to make amends midway. Mechanics wise I find that terrible.

I started in Hard, after a while it got easy and had to install/learn IEmod to set PoTD (activate ToggleScalers and increase xp required to lvl up) and to constantly re-train without having to spend all gold because that felt really bad. Then found out game is easy on Hard (ZERO party micro-manage in most combats) but way too difficult on PotD (abuse meta with cheesy positioning/tactics/etc)... go figure. Still, many tnks to creator of IEmod! Doesn't fix mechanics convolution but makes the ordeal more bearable, I would likely have quit midway otherwise. Hopefully PoE 2 has something of the kind.

Also but as a minor, some characters have little charm to them or lose charm due to so much "beating around the bush" that the game enforces more or just as much as developing the characters actual CHARACTER. Guess majority would rather more dialogues (and party banters!) replacing the overabundance of descriptions.

Anyway, a friend said PoE2 is better and I hope so, PoE 1 has scared me, for a game that should be polished/forthcoming mechanically wise, I found it far from that.

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13 minutes ago, Himself said:

To make matters truly worse, gotta retrain party every couple levels to cope with optimization and newfound powers/items. Re-training characters at taverns/Caed Nua should be free of cost to remedy the issue a bit.

Basically the game requires tons of meta knowledge and trial/error, leaving little room for the player to make amends midway. Mechanics wise I find that terrible.

These are very odd claims. Would you care to specify them?

I can say from my own experience that you NEVER have to retrain your party, and the game also requires NO meta knowledge. To me, this is painstakingly obvious -- after all, I have finished the game without retraining my party or using meta knowledge. So where does your claim come from? What kind of an approach do you have?

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It's the Diablo III approach where nothing about your character is set in stone, you don't have to commit or even decide anything and can adjust your playstyle on the fly at any time - which makes the character development incredibly flexible but also extremely unexiting and boring. 

It also seems to require a rather bizarre trail of thought to state
a) "the game is too easy on hard"
and then follow with
b) "gotta retrain party every couple levels to cope with optimization" and "the game requires tons of meta knowledge and trial/error". 🤷‍♂️  

And again there's little distinction between "I didn't like it, therefore I thought about not to buy Deadfire (but did it anyway so my point is moot from the get-go)" and "this is a problem that most likely happened to the majority of PoE players and therefore it's resonable to think it's the cause for dropping sales numbers". An "IMO" doesn't do the job (although better than nothing I have to admit).

 

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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3 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

These are very odd claims. Would you care to specify them?

I can say from my own experience that you NEVER have to retrain your party, and the game also requires NO meta knowledge. To me, this is painstakingly obvious -- after all, I have finished the game without retraining my party or using meta knowledge. 

Drink a 2 DR Beer, activate Zealous Endurance, DR from 1st gets supressed by the 2nd. Pick Bull's Will to resist X/Y/Z, then next lvl the priest or other class gets a spell that makes the char impervious to X/Y/Z, so Bull's Will has become redundant. Armored Grace says -20% Armor Speed Penalty, doesn't states if flat modifier or based upon current equipped armor or if theres a formula. PoE1 at least, has 95780297589027589026798 cases that go like this.
I wanted to make Barbarian with tons of attack speed, then noticed things add/stack in determined way that I gotta memorize or sort out what category is, soon it lost fun having to keep track about what stacks with what, test each new stuff or research via google (or both, and just for attack speed, keeping track of most modifiers is too much a chore). They should have went for a simpler system where everything stacks - taking care not to make the values/amount of stackable stuff become imba, or a system that after a X value it takes 2 point to get 1 of benefit.

Its about optimization, but we gotta know the mechanics to optimize, in this case when making a bad pick the game goes like "tough luck bro, pour me your gold or choose better next time!" - As if we should have known optimal choices PREVIOUSLY.
To me it is design flaw to add complexity that needs to be learned/understood to afterwards block player from using said knowledge to reach highest potential because the system enforces commiting to previous choices. Leads to regret and repetition for sake of the bad.
 

 -- What kind of an approach do you have? --

I like to roleplay my characters/party as much as possible, such as resting at intervals and avoid rest in dangerous places (unless the alternative entails too much extra work like leaving the area to sleep at nearest city - then I just pretend we secured/barred a room to rest). Would be better if areas had pre-determined places where rest is allowed. Also avoid having all X resist and Y offense at the ready because that's what's gonna be best at next corner, when obviously my char/party has no way of knowing that. And I try to reply in dialogs as character would instead of doing what is best or would provide best rewards.

But I also like to have a challenge and make full use of mechanics, its extremely unpleasant being attached to poorly made choices.
Not like theres a need to respec party for each dungeon, but instead to find myself with a party where the choices made upon that point are the correct/best ones (to my knowledge).

Sorry for multiple edits on post, I struggle with English and was trying to phrase without being agressive :)

 

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12 hours ago, Himself said:

I like to roleplay my characters/party as much as possible

[...]

But I also like to have a challenge and make full use of mechanics, its extremely unpleasant being attached to poorly made choices.

Judging by the other stuff you write in your comment, you lean very hard on the second side of this comment (as edited by me), i.e. although there is role-playing involved, you seem to approach the game as a math puzzle. Even from the outset, that doesn't seem to be an approach that produces much enjoyment.

Let us suppose you come across a monster in the game. You can defeat it, or not, these are the possibilities. Let us suppose that in this case, you can defeat it. Tell me this: What exactly do you gain from the fact that you seem to make a huge and calculated effort to defeat it with 2.6% more efficiency and 1.38 seconds faster than I do? This is what your approach looks like to me.

As I said in my earlier comment, none of the calculations you make are necessary. No meta knowledge at all is needed in the game. You don't have to retrain your group once, ever.

I am 100% sure that in my playthrough, I made choices that were less than 100% optimal, mathematically speaking. Those choices were motivated by the idea of role-playing: I am playing a character that likes this and that, makes choices on that basis and then lives with the choices. For example, on these forums, there's been plenty of talk about what you can do in stealth mode (in Deadfire); how you can lead people astray and then steal stuff from them. I never did any of that. I didn't play the kind of character who was into stealth and sneaking. That was a role-playing choice. It was far from optimal (there was plenty of stuff I didn't acquire because of my choice), but it was a choice that felt natural to my character and made playing a lot of fun to me.

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I mean it's ok to approach the game in whatever fashion you like - whatever gives you joy.

But it's something else to then assume everybody has the same approach and that your struggles are theirs as well - which then leads to abysmal sales numbers. Especially if I follow a quite... pedantic way to play.

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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29 minutes ago, Boeroer said:

I mean it's ok to approach the game in whatever fashion you like - whatever gives you joy.

Oh, absolutely. No question. But somehow the description gave me the sense that the approach itself contributed to the fact that the game was no joy. In which case I assume there are better games for that approach.

Also, the claim that metagaming or retraining is necessary is simply not true. No way. That's a result of a particular approach.

Edited by xzar_monty
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13 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

Judging by the other stuff...

Approaching each aspect of the game individually (graphics, sounds, mechanics, roleplaying, etc). We all have different values and practices, but the game has to be judged in each area and how succesful goes the mix.
Mechanically I find it to be unnecessarily convoluted. Stands as a deterrent for me to buy PoE2 or even tell others to try PoE1/2. If all the people who bought PoE1 enjoyed the game, they would look forward to play 2 and tell others to.
While not everybody reasoning is the same, some lines cross and mechanics are a huge part of the game. Save for lack of companions/interaction and maybe replay value, PoE1 is pretty neat.

Designers could have opted for a more forgiving, friendly and easy-of-use approach to mechanics. Being left in the dark to make choices is unpleasant to most players nowadays (and with reason).
Lets say stacking, I don't think 50% of players ever tried to understand the stacking rules.
Should the players do it? Is that fundamental for their enjoyment of the game?
For a designer, real question is how much enjoyment (or detriment) it causes. While taste varies, a good game will keep majority entertained without having them resenting the system.
PoE1 starts as a fun endeavor that proceeds to baffle the player as it progresses, causing player to ignore whole sections of rules, or feel it is unfair, restrictive, regret their choices (some people restart playthroughs due to that).
Designer should care about minimizing needless grievance.

Not saying it is all bad, clearly a lot of care and refinement went into it, but still lacks fine tunning.
Few changes from top of the head of what (I think) would make the ordeal  much more enjoyable to the average user:
- Item enchants (player added) can be removed, or replaced by another of same weight value
- Specific ingredients can be created/ordered at buildings in the keep (rarer ones are costly, take longer)
- Easier effect stacking or a list of what stacks with what (or go full 'everything stacks' except similar spells and abilities such as Frenzy/Greater Frenzy or Blessing/Dire Blessing, then rebalance values to accomodate)
- Re-leveling chars costing a lot less
- Make it CRYSTAL CLEAR that foods can be consumed via inventory by applying on char model (found that in google, dunno if the game tells that and managing quickslots is a chore).
- Better descriptions for a lot of stuff, for example the effect of https://pillarsofeternity.gamepedia.com/Spelltongue 

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2 hours ago, Himself said:

Approaching each aspect of the game individually (graphics, sounds, mechanics, roleplaying, etc). We all have different values and practices, but the game has to be judged in each area and how succesful goes the mix.

Sure. But you still haven't explained in any way why you think meta-knowledge or retraining is necessary. They are not. Why do you think they are?

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4 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

Sure. But you still haven't explained in any way why you think meta-knowledge or retraining is necessary. They are not. Why do you think they are?

Course I did, optimization.

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Right. Then you can't really complain about the game being too easy on Hard. Meta-knowledge is essentially cheating, so of course the game is going to be too easy if you check out stuff that isn't within your own experience of the game.

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Meta is not necessary on Hard, I'm finding it necessary on PotD. Altough I wouldn't rule out the possibility to play PotD without meta, I currently don't think its possible or advisable.
The difference between Hard and PotD feels huge, wich is another issue. Would like a middle ground with need to micromanage but no need to abuse meta.

The whole point in what hurts PoE1 isn't about how much meta/optimization is necessary, instead how the game goes about it. Mechanics should be a fun/entertaining process. A good game makes you appreciate its tactical aspects, PoE1 convolutes it and fails to cope with itself as it goes. The average user will likely feel there's something wrong that becomes worse the more he progresses.

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I played both PoE* and Deadfire on PotD without any meta knowledge and was absolutely fine. Had to reload a few of the known tricky fights like Bear Cave, Gorecci Street, Digsite or simply choose a non-violant apporach or come back later - but overall it went pretty smoothly. Nowadays - with meta knowledge - PotD is too easy but I don't play those games for a challenge anymore but rather to verify fun character concepts.  

Like "useless", "perfect" or "pregnant", "impossible" is a pretty absolute term. I wouldn't use it if I weren't really sure that it fits.  

)* with PoE I canceled my first playthrough on normal difficulty after some hours because it became too easy and restarted with Path of the Damned.

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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@Himself: I understand your point, but I don't agree with your general complaint, because I think your problems stem from your very specific approach to how you want to play the game. The fact that the game doesn't provide a good experience when approached in the way you do is obviously not very nice, but I don't think you can blame Obsidian for it; it's not possible for the developer to consider all possible approaches. Yours seems very specific.

I'm sure that your approach may work just fine with some other games, but I'm inclined to think that's simply due to chance, it's not that anybody has planned for that approach.

I can't really claim anything about PotD, but my experience with these forums would strongly suggest that a lot of people have indeed played PoE on PotD without meta. I can be wrong.

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So yes, Boeroer confirmed by last point: meta is not necessary even on PotD. So @Himself, maybe you're just not a very good player in that regard. Please don't take that as an insult: I myself am certainly not a very good player in that regard -- Hard is hard enough for me, thank you very much.

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