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So, yeah. I tried hard to love this game. And there is much it got right:

My first impression was amazing, it truly felt like the natural evolution of Baldur's Gate. The Storytelling bits with skill checks are IMO the best translation of a real tabletop RPG feel to a cRPG. You can tell the developers really tried to make a better successor to the BG games. And I think they came really close.

 

But the game just bored me out really fast. Faster than any game before it. It is easy.... painfully easy to get great equipment (just max mechanics and stealth and you may grab most stuff you want). Money is easy, therefore upgrades are easy. I really like hunting for equipment and by the time I reach Neketaka, which is THE FIRST PLACE YOU GO TO OUTSIDE OF PORT MAJE... there is nothing in the game that I could possibly want anymore. From then on it is just a grind to get the XP (that is painfully easy to obtain as well) and YAY! You get to use some cool high level skills.

 

I don't want to drag anymore than what I already did. But it is a shame, I feel very saddened to abandon this game. Pirate theme is very cool and SO MUCH was done right. But it just was not for me, and I wish I hadn't sinked 115 hours trying to create cool characters on it.

 

EDIT: After a few days playing with Deadly Deadfire and Harder Economy (50% less gold from sales) mods with upward upscaling only, I found the game to be truly fun to play. Every encounter matters, strategy counts, gold does not come quick. Found myself spending already more hours on this one playthough than the last 5 combined, and I am yet to leave Neketaka. It made PoE GReAt AgAin!

Edited by pblack476
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Are you playing on PC?

If yes, then you could try the Deadly Deadfire mod. It should make the game more challenging (I don't recall if it also has a component to slow down XP gain; I seem to remember it does.)

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"Time is not your enemy. Forever is."

— Fall-From-Grace, Planescape: Torment

"It's the questions we can't answer that teach us the most. They teach us how to think. If you give a man an answer, all he gains is a little fact. But give him a question, and he'll look for his own answers."

— Kvothe, The Wise Man's Fears

My Deadfire mods: Brilliant Mod | Faster Deadfire | Deadfire Unnerfed | Helwalker Rekke | Permanent Per-Rest Bonuses

 

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It's true that much of the best equipment is available quite soon once you know where to look. It sounds like you would have preferred that the game keep these items from you until later in the game. That's not an invalid complaint. There is some quite good stuff later on though. Have you played the DLC's?

Money is kind of irrelevant once you realize that the pirate ships respawn. In particular, the Principi Expert Captain is easy to beat and nets you 20K each time. I don't think this was a great design choice. I understand they didn't want the map to be empty of ships. Having the total money you could obtain be limited would serve Deadfire better, especially as this game has some of the best RPG shops ever.

https://www.pcgamer.com/pillars-of-eternity-2-has-the-best-rpg-shops/

You can choose to never attack generic-named ships. There will still be plenty of money, but it won't be until late in the game that you'll have as much as you need, as enchanting and ship-related things are quite expensive.

The XP mod suggestion is a good one. Deadly Deadfire sets the questXP modifier from 1.35 to 1.15. I'd recommend setting it to 1.00 if you have the DLCs installed.

Don't discount the high-level abilities, some of them (like Monk and Barb) are quite neat. Blood Thirst is my favorite ability in the game. Nothing like setting off a rampage killing chain with it's double-processing (I think the dev's made a mistake but left it in there once they realized how cool it was.)

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1 hour ago, saltynoodles said:

It's true that much of the best equipment is available quite soon once you know where to look. It sounds like you would have preferred that the game keep these items from you until later in the game. That's not an invalid complaint.

The operative words are "once you know where to look". Knowing where to look requires metagaming. Once you start metagaming, you kind of lose your right to complain, because you are kind of rigging the game in your favor.

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2 hours ago, asnjas said:

People trying to help this casita like the game. He doesnt like it people, you cant save him. Theres no hope for salvation. Take your scripture book and move to the next house. 

LOL. I mean it all in a good sense. I am sure I will give the game another shot later on after the burnout fades. Maybe slowing down XP gain could improve the experience. But my main complain really is about equipment and resources. Being a thorough player means that after visiting dunnage and neketaka with high mechanics & stealth there is enough money, enchanting supplies and powerful items to go around. By that time you are likely to have at least a few end game weapons, armor and accessories. It feels great at first you know... "hell yeah, fully upgraded crit machine by level 10" (minus skills) But what is there to look forward to after that? I say that of course being a "build fiend" type of player and once I get my build going, it starts to become less interesting. And I guess that is a design choice the devs made that is just not suitable for my playstyle preferences. I probably sank 400+ hours into skyrim and never finished the main quest because I always set a goal for my character and once that was done, merely completing quests became a chore. And the thing is that this time comes waaay too soon in Deadfire.

 

But I love the theme and I tried playing Baldur's Gate again only to find that Deadfire ruined the graphics of those games forever for me. So I am sure I will eventually give it another go. It is a shame no more patches are coming out (while Baldur's Gate is STILL getting them with patch 2.6 by the way) because modding in Deadfire seems to only go so far as it is quite a lot more complex than in Infinity engine games, even if the engine itself allows for more. I was happy modding IE games to my taste but it really becomes a task outside of my league doing it in Deadfire.

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18 hours ago, pblack476 said:

It feels great at first you know... "hell yeah, fully upgraded crit machine by level 10" (minus skills) But what is there to look forward to after that?

The story. You're playing an adventure game, a story, set within a world you're meant to explore, which means there are people and places and encounters and a storyline (actually, several) to follow.

I have absolutely no intention to insult you, but it sounds like you have chosen the wrong genre altogether, given your preferences and approach. Your problem with the game, set in another context, sounds like you've watched the first ten minutes of the movie and discovered who the main characters are, what they sound like and what they look like. And then you ask, now that I know all that, what is there to look forward to? The story, man.

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It seems that the obvious challenge is not to steal.

23 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

The operative words are "once you know where to look". Knowing where to look requires metagaming. Once you start metagaming, you kind of lose your right to complain, because you are kind of rigging the game in your favor.

This too.

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10 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

The story. You're playing an adventure game, a story, set within a world you're meant to explore, which means there are people and places and encounters and a storyline (actually, several) to follow.

I have absolutely no intention to insult you, but it sounds like you have chosen the wrong genre altogether, given your preferences and approach. Your problem with the game, set in another context, sounds like you've watched the first ten minutes of the movie and discovered who the main characters are, what they sound like and what they look like. And then you ask, now that I know all that, what is there to look forward to? The story, man.

Different players have different preferences you know. It is a game after all and there is no wrong way of enjoying it. Some people like story mode, others hardcore mode, some like min-maxing, some don't care for it. There is no "wrong approach" the way I see it. And I am fine admitting that the game has not been fun for me with my approach. Some games lend themselves better to this sort of thing, and Deadfire just hapenned to be the worst yet at it.

As I said before... feels like a design choice, not really a flaw or mistake. And it just ain't my cup of tea.

 

But hey! Been playing Deadly Deadfire with harder economy mods and so far.... so good. Challenge is way up... I actually HAVE to use sneak to avoid some sections depending on what I wanna acomplish, leveling is slower so skills are slower and therefore I can't just run out and steal a bunch end game gear from merchants right away, naval combat is just a tiny bit harder enough to make you wonder if you should actually enter it and money is tighter so purchases matter more.

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You merlas still arguing about this? Theres no wrong way to enjoy the game, which is fine. The problem is they didnt make the game in a way that you happen to enjoy, which is fine. 

Honestly, sincerely, youres truely, youre just in the wrong genre. You cant please everyone and thats why theres more than one genre. 

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11 hours ago, asnjas said:

You merlas still arguing about this? Theres no wrong way to enjoy the game, which is fine. The problem is they didnt make the game in a way that you happen to enjoy, which is fine. 

Honestly, sincerely, youres truely, youre just in the wrong genre. You cant please everyone and thats why theres more than one genre. 

I wouldn't say wrong genre. I mean... Everything mentioned was in perfect balance in a game like the BG series. And that is as close to the same genre as I can possibly conceive to Deadfire. It was a design choice that I happened not to enjoy. Actually, every other isometric cRPG I've played had this in check, it is just Deadfire that made it different.

For reference, I still believe the best isometric cRPG to date is Temple of Elemental Evil. And my mistake was comparing the two games. I get that Deadfire is a different beast. But far from a different genre.

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29 minutes ago, pblack476 said:

For reference, I still believe the best isometric cRPG to date is Temple of Elemental Evil. And my mistake was comparing the two games. I get that Deadfire is a different beast. But far from a different genre.

Interesting choice. Why do you think it's the best? I'm genuinely very curious.

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2 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

Interesting choice. Why do you think it's the best? I'm genuinely very curious.

Gald to be asked that... no one seems to take an interest when I mention that game.

Of all the isometric cRPGs out there I feel this one has the best D&D ruleset implementation of them all. Turn-based (done right) feels great. And the 3.5 rules are complex enough to give a good amount of replayability to the game, even if the campaign is quite restricted in its storyline.  But what gets me on that game is that there are very few generic encounters. Every combat seems to be very well balanced and feels very challenging without seeming like the developer just threw "more minions" at you for the sake of difficulty. You cannot always choose how to approach them and that is also great, makes it feel more like a well thought out campaign than a cRPG. Finally I like the fact that there are a lot of companions available AND a lot of overlap between them. So I have once ran a game with a party full of rogues only, and the game did not break. Some encounters were a LOT harder but nothing was undoable. The game makes you feel like you can control the difficulty really well by your choices, and at least for me, I did not believe I could break the game with any choices I made. The restricted nature of this closed campaign gives you a perfect balance, if not in a small world. But that is allright, because at the end of the day what matters most in a game is how much fun you can have, and for how long.

 

Don't know if I could get into it nowadays. It has a rather slow paced feel and a slow paced beginning section that I remember all too well doing tens of times over while settling for a specific build. But it just feels amazing to enter an encounter that you know is hard and get an appropriate reward for it (Hill Giants right out of the first town feels like a boss and is probably the most memorable encounter in any game I have ever faced, even if there is nothing special about it, it makes you REALLY use your arsenal of low level abilities to beat it with just the right amount of RNG to make things exciting without being frustrating).

EDIT: All of the above apply using the CO8 Modpack of course. I have never played it without it.

Edited by pblack476
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Thanks for that, that was good.

I only played the game for some time, and if memory serves me correctly, the reasons it didn't ultimately draw me in were something like this:

1) The pace was fairly slow (you touch upon this yourself), which was reflected even in the fact that the sprites' walking pace on the screen was a tad sluggish.

2) It seemed to me that the game didn't really care about your character vs. your dialogue choices and options. In other words, a rogue and a paladin could say exactly the same things in conversation, and neither really mattered that much (although according to the rules, a paladin should always strive for good). I may have got the wrong impression about this.

3) The experience didn't even come close to the original, i.e. the PnP Temple of Elemental Evil module from the 1980s, which was a bit of a classic at the time and which we had a great time with. This is, of course, a somewhat unfair comparison, because cRPGs almost never equal PnP role-playing in terms of the fun you have.

Btw, I also played the game modded, as I understood it's really quite flawed without it.

I thought the game was interesting, but just not interesting enough for me to seriously get into. But I'm picky, I'll admit that. There's only BG2, PoE and Deadfire for me, in this genre, with P:K almost there.

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6 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

Thanks for that, that was good.

I only played the game for some time, and if memory serves me correctly, the reasons it didn't ultimately draw me in were something like this:

1) The pace was fairly slow (you touch upon this yourself), which was reflected even in the fact that the sprites' walking pace on the screen was a tad sluggish.

2) It seemed to me that the game didn't really care about your character vs. your dialogue choices and options. In other words, a rogue and a paladin could say exactly the same things in conversation, and neither really mattered that much (although according to the rules, a paladin should always strive for good). I may have got the wrong impression about this.

3) The experience didn't even come close to the original, i.e. the PnP Temple of Elemental Evil module from the 1980s, which was a bit of a classic at the time and which we had a great time with. This is, of course, a somewhat unfair comparison, because cRPGs almost never equal PnP role-playing in terms of the fun you have.

Btw, I also played the game modded, as I understood it's really quite flawed without it.

I thought the game was interesting, but just not interesting enough for me to seriously get into. But I'm picky, I'll admit that. There's only BG2, PoE and Deadfire for me, in this genre, with P:K almost there.

I have reinstalled it and will see if it lives up to the hype in my memory.

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Can't say I've run into any of those issues myself in spite of being on my 5th playthrough or so and having access to a ton of Berath's blessing (incl. 50k starter money). In its current state, this is one of the best games I've ever played. Also, why can't people stop comparing everything to Baldur's Gate? Let games be their own selves. My only complaint are the loading screens, which they apparently never fixed, and that the turn-based mode is terrible (I tried it for a change but had to restart).

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