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12 minutes ago, Elric Galad said:

https://forums.obsidian.net/topic/114591-mechanics-the-summoners-tables/

 

Basically yes, they level up but for their weapons it depends : for some summons, yes, for other (like wurms) no.

 

I look at the chart, it appears the Weapons are the only ones with consistent scaling. A shame, I was hoping each summon would have their uses even in late game.

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5 minutes ago, Griffonheart said:

I look at the chart, it appears the Weapons are the only ones with consistent scaling. A shame, I was hoping each summon would have their uses even in late game.

even ones that don't scale up are still pretty useful even in late game. most summons at the very least still "level up" and get higher defenses, health, and accuracy, which makes them a free source of damage prevention and some free damage/flanking.

a few summons have useful abilities even if they don't get better equipment (spiritual ally has robust inspiration at will).

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It's too bad that the wurms' weapons won't scale (skeletons' swords also don't). You can build a really nice "artillery" Chanter with wurms using Mith Fyr and Sure Handed Ila etc. But after some levels it's constant underpenetration which is such a shame. Also wurms are no good for damage prevention and flanking bc. they have no engagement and are ranged creatures. Imo the non-scling weapons of some summons are an oversight. I don't think it was inteneded that some summons become obsolete. Devs did intruduce Powel Level scaling in order to make low level stuff viable until the late game. Makes no sense to introduce non-scaling weapons on summons intentionally then (at least I can't see how that would make sense). 

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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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38 minutes ago, Griffonheart said:

I look at the chart, it appears the Weapons are the only ones with consistent scaling. A shame, I was hoping each summon would have their uses even in late game.

https://www.nexusmods.com/pillarsofeternity2/mods/438

The Summon package of this mod basically implement it, just in case you could be interested.

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16 hours ago, Boeroer said:

It's too bad that the wurms' weapons won't scale (skeletons' swords also don't). You can build a really nice "artillery" Chanter with wurms using Mith Fyr and Sure Handed Ila etc. But after some levels it's constant underpenetration which is such a shame. Also wurms are no good for damage prevention and flanking bc. they have no engagement and are ranged creatures. Imo the non-scling weapons of some summons are an oversight. I don't think it was inteneded that some summons become obsolete. Devs did intruduce Powel Level scaling in order to make low level stuff viable until the late game. Makes no sense to introduce non-scaling weapons on summons intentionally then (at least I can't see how that would make sense). 

Diablo 2 had a great system where you can power up earlier skills by putting points into higher tier ones, including summons, so no spells become obsolete, everyone can play in styles as they see fit. Not sure how much calculation it’d require if it’s implemented to an RPG like PoE.

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8 minutes ago, Griffonheart said:

Diablo 2 had a great system where you can power up earlier skills by putting points into higher tier ones, including summons, so no spells become obsolete, everyone can play in styles as they see fit. Not sure how much calculation it’d require if it’s implemented to an RPG like PoE.

Well in general Power level works like that in deadfire, some summons just got the bad end of the stick, pretty much all other abilities scale.

A very good example is another chanter invocation Thrice was she wronged.

Not only is the Powerlevel 3 upgrade Her Revenge an amazing upgrade, but thru scaling it remains one of the best invocations thru the entire game.

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That's what I wanted to say. In general the Powel Level scaling works great. And the summons do scale their stats. Just some of them have specific weapons and I guess those simply lack the "auto-scale" property - most likely because it was forgotten. Could also be that devs wanted to make the higher-tier summons more desirable - but I don't think so. 

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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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My own opinion is that in basically every game summons tend to be complicated to balance and are complex spells overall.
Most games just to have the budget or time to make things clean and just drop creatures on your summoner face without second thought
Deadfire did better by implementing level scaling, but not applied to weapons. Too bad because they already had the ruleset to do so.

Consider some example of what I've been through to make summons clean :
- One of Eoathas Incarnate trio had an infinite recovery, so can act only once
- Berath Pallid Knight has a mundane sword 
- Dragon with a bottomless pit of HP but less armor than a drake
- Ultimate druid summon is basically a pet with big stats.
They haven't been tested properly, so balancing them was out of reach !
Not enough time and budget, and too complicated to think about to be on top of the mind of a priority-driven game designer.

So yes, it is an oversight, even a classical one (think about how poorly balanced summons were in BG), but the strangest thing in PoE is that it was left middle of the road, not totally forgotten.

 

What makes things worse in Deadfire are :
- The penetration system, which makes early game summons obsolete except as fodders 
- limit to 1 summon. Even classical casters can't ad a Tier 2 summon to support their Tier 7 ones. 
- For chanter : common ressource pool. Summoning the wurm spend precious points necessary to cast Ancient Weapons.

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42 minutes ago, Elric Galad said:

 

So yes, it is an oversight, even a classical one (think about how poorly balanced summons were in BG), but the strangest thing in PoE is that it was left middle of the road, not totally forgotten.

 

 

Idk about pre EE-version of BG because I only played it once fully and it was my first playthru of BG saga ever so I didn't pay enough attention but:

EE BG summons are very balanced because they use the actual creature stats of ingame creatures.

Tbf only Animate Dead scales with caster level afaik, so you probably meant specifically in terms of scaling, but in overally balance BG saga/IWD1 has one of the best system for summons period imo, most of them just don't scale, but the one scaling summon is a go to summon, so the scaling is implemented quite well on that one.

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Just now, Raven Darkholme said:

Idk about pre EE-version of BG because I only played it once fully and it was my first playthru of BG saga ever so I didn't pay enough attention but:

EE BG summons are very balanced because they use the actual creature stats of ingame creatures.

Tbf only Animate Dead scales with caster level afaik, so you probably meant specifically in terms of scaling, but in overally balance BG saga/IWD1 has one of the best system for summons period imo, most of them just don't scale, but the one scaling summon is a go to summon, so the scaling is implemented quite well on that one.

Balanced is different from being equal to actual creature stats.

Animate Dead, Mordenkainen Swords and Planetars/Devas/Elemental Princes are basically the only summons worth using on BG Endgame. 

I wouldn't call it best summon system. Actually PoE is much better in my opinion.

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55 minutes ago, Elric Galad said:

Balanced is different from being equal to actual creature stats.

Animate Dead, Mordenkainen Swords and Planetars/Devas/Elemental Princes are basically the only summons worth using on BG Endgame. 

I wouldn't call it best summon system. Actually PoE is much better in my opinion.

Hm, I don't agree.

Deadfire summons biggest weakness is that the low level summons don't scale well late game, so to say Baldur's Gate's summon system is worse than Poe because it suffers from a similar weakness is .... a strange argument.

In a DnD game them being based of actual creature stats is actually quite a good way to balance, because creature stats in dnd are very balanced.

(You wouldn't want a lone goblin summon to defeat a dragon? as a silly example)

IF Deadfires PL scaling was applied better to all summons then I'd agree with you but it just isn't.

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Just now, Raven Darkholme said:

In a DnD game them being based of actual creature stats is actually quite a good way to balance, because creature stats in dnd are very balanced.

(You wouldn't want a lone goblin summon to defeat a dragon? as a silly example)

"better" in this case becomes subjective. DnD has tons of spells, many are super situationnal or work only at low level. But is it bad ? Sometimes it's funny to spam Sleep spell at low level and look for something else later on.

The design goal of PoE seems to be that all abilities should stay relevant, at least situationnally. I think it's great, more modern, but "better" is maybe an overstatement. 

Just now, Raven Darkholme said:

IF Deadfires PL scaling was applied better to all summons then I'd agree with you but it just isn't.

Yeah that's why I say the system is better. The implementation was basically cut half-way. I tend to be very biased because I implemented "the other half" in a fitting fashion for my own taste 🙂 

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7 hours ago, Griffonheart said:

Diablo 2 had a great system where you can power up earlier skills by putting points into higher tier ones, including summons, so no spells become obsolete, everyone can play in styles as they see fit. Not sure how much calculation it’d require if it’s implemented to an RPG like PoE.

Diablo 2's synergy system was terrible. It was intended to make lower level skills useful late game (and disincentivize putting 1 point into lower skills and just hoarding skill points until later skills). But in practice synergies discourage build diversity because now you have to go all-or nothing into a few skills and their synergies to be viable for nightmare and beyond. (and many passives you still only ever need to put in one point because they never got synergies. and the handful of active abilities that get no synergies are basically dead in the water. and some synergies are still terrible - try making a golem necromancer)

I clocked hundreds upon hundreds of hours grinding in Diablo 2, and I've made peace with the fact that despite its addictive loot-reward cycle, it is honestly just a very poorly designed game system. There are skills where the diminishing returns are so significant that at times you get 0 returns for several skill points.

Edited by thelee
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3 hours ago, Raven Darkholme said:

In a DnD game them being based of actual creature stats is actually quite a good way to balance, because creature stats in dnd are very balanced.

important to note that in tabletop, you have a human GM who can be a partner in making even situationally or poorly balanced summons useful in combat somehow (unless you're in a particularly punishing or power-gaming campaign).

in practice IMO D&D-based game systems the summons can be very easily lackluster, even if faithfully re-implemented, especially since combat encounters in a video game version of a D&D-based game are much more extreme than tabletop.

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1 hour ago, thelee said:

important to note that in tabletop, you have a human GM who can be a partner in making even situationally or poorly balanced summons useful in combat somehow (unless you're in a particularly punishing or power-gaming campaign).

in practice IMO D&D-based game systems the summons can be very easily lackluster, even if faithfully re-implemented, especially since combat encounters in a video game version of a D&D-based game are much more extreme than tabletop.

You're not wrong, but in BG you have an open world-like environment, which is at least somewhat different to an actual table-top session.

Unless you're intentionally looking for trouble you're not gonna run into encounters where you are getting outscaled by the enemies.

Summons being lackluster happens very rarely in BG, some are just (much) more op than others, it's a very different situation from deadfire where all summons are relatively bad and some are just worse than others. 😛

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I always wondered how some people can make claims so easily about something being balanced or not. The balance is something subjective, based on the experience of the average player, which is very difficult to judge. Personally I prefer to use just common sense. If summons were not considered unbalanced at low level, I don't really see how could they become overpowered at higher levels because of scaling weapons. 

From my point of view all summons should have scalable weapons if they were intended to stay relevant at higher levels. And since the entire PL system advertises just that, I think all these inconsistencies are just bugs left unfixed (because OBS cared about things that were considered too strong, not too weak).

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16 hours ago, Elric Galad said:

Planetars/Devas/Elemental Princes are basically the only summons worth using on BG Endgame.

Ah... a Planetar with Improved Haste, Globe of Blades and Improved Invisibility. Improved Haste gave it something like 8 attacks per round (with the 25% vorpal chance per hit) and doubled the hit rate of Globe of Blades as well. Unleash that invisible meat grinder from Hel on a bunch of unsuspecting Illithids. Good times those were :).

Just one of many ways for a Mage/Sorcerer to reach absolute godhood in the BG saga 😎.

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9 hours ago, Kaylon said:

The balance is something subjective, based on the experience of the average player, which is very difficult to judge

I disagree with the first part of your statement here. I think that balance on the contrary is about avoiding certain class/skill/item combos to be objectively so much more powerful than anything else that people are compelled to always select them instead of other options. Now the other part of this question is whether a fundamental imbalance is fun or not and whether you want to keep it that way, which is indeed very much subjective.

Bloodmage vs. other Wizards isn't balanced objectively. But I personally love this class and I'm happy the way it is.

Troubadour isn't balanced vs. other Chanters but it is beloved the way it is.

In BG Sorcerer or Berserker weren't balanced. But I loved those classes and the way they were implemented with their many flaws.

I definitely agree though that in Deadfire Summons not getting scaling weapons is probably more a bug/oversight than anything else. :) 

Edited by Not So Clever Hound
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1 hour ago, Not So Clever Hound said:

I disagree with the first part of your statement here. I think that balance on the contrary is about avoiding certain class/skill/item combos to be objectively so much more powerful than anything else that people are compelled to always select them instead of other options. Now the other part of this question is whether a fundamental imbalance is fun or not and whether you want to keep it that way, which is indeed very much subjective.

Not really. If a class is picking always the same ability it simply means it's better than the others, not overpowered. You can have an average ability and multiple weak ones and then the choice is obvious. Also the discussion here is not about obvious overpowered abilities, but more about fine tuning. 

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59 minutes ago, Kaylon said:

Also the discussion here is not about obvious overpowered abilities, but more about fine tuning.

You started your argument about the idea of balance in general, I just followed that tangent.

1 hour ago, Kaylon said:

You can have an average ability and multiple weak ones and then the choice is obvious.

Indeed, I don't disagree with the fact that it's perfectly ok if item/skill ABC is strictly better than item/skill XYZ. To stay on the obvious example of Bloodmage, my point is that if Bloodmage is overwhelmingly better than any other Wizard subclasses in the overwhelming majority of situations you can think of, it means that the other subclasses will hardly ever be played, although devs put some efforts in building them. Then it objectively isn't very balanced for the Wizard parent class overall. But again, whether one is happy with that result or not is subjective.

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Balance mainly comes from Multiplayer games.

When using a class/skill/item etc. gives you an unfair advantage over people not using it its likely to get patched.

Same when something is underused. (In an ideal scenario)

In Deadfire being a singleplayer game I do agree it is more subjective, since players only compete with themselves, not with others.

However the Ultimate was somewhat a competitive event and out of the first 12 only one was using summons heavily, even tho technically they are an ideal and safe choice.

This is simply due to them being underwhelming in the damage department and this includes the animated weapons even tho they are the best summons AND scale.

Now ofc I agree it's most likely an oversight the other summons don't scale, that doesn't change the fact it's in the game and won't be patched except by mods.

At the end of the day summons are at best a distraction in deadfire and even if all summons scaled properly none of them would even come close to the planetars, elemental princes or even the humble skeleton warriors of BG.

While BG summons might have been unbalanced in the way that some of them were too op (subjectively),

in deadfire summons have a hard time competing with other skills.

Their main use is being a distraction or solving fights underleveled by keeping your party completely out of the fight and let the summons do all.

Killing Dorudugan with only summons damage is a feat of much patience.

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