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8 companions: is it enough?

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So, is anyone else concerned about the lack of variety among the potential party members? It seems that 8 companions is a bit low number for 5 party slots.

 

Granted, it seems that for party memebrs Obsidian is taking Planescape/MotB route (potential companions are fewer in number, but are much more fleshed out and involved in the main plot). Now, don't get me wrong, I'm all for the "quality over quantity" approach, but 8 just seems a bit too low. Baldur's Gate had over twenty potential companions. Baldur's Gate 2 had 17. Shouldn't P:E have at least 10, to allow a couple of playthroughs with entirely different parties?

 

I think the variety of choices in party composition contributed greatly to BG series replayability. The fact that you could go through the same story with completely different set of characters, assembled by your own criteria, whether it's a class or alignment or, dunno, pants colour (Troup of six arcane spellcasters? Possible. Team Evil, that includes greedy dwarven berserker, scheming wizard and hot drow priestess? Possible. Merry band of treehugging hippy-druids and rangers? Possible... though only if you can fight the desire to strangle Jaheira in her sleep for the whole game :) ) was one of the best things about Baldur's Gate.

 

PS: Before anyone brings up Adventurer's Hall: while I appreciate the possibilities is brings to the game, I don't really consider player generated IWD-style faceless party members without dialogue and backstory companions in a "true" sense.

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I'll probably play through the first time alone, and then some mix of player-made and pre-built party members. I think it'd add some flavor if they could give you the option of "AI packs" or personality packs for player-made NPCs that include some rudimentry banter and dialogue. Something like "devotee of [god of healing]" who responds to violence or something, or "Champion of [name of epic battle]" who is always shouting for death and carnage. That way, you'd have the eight really in-depth characters (admittedly, I'd like at least a couple more) and some more light hearted characters.

 

Also, I'd like for certain comments in the Adventure's hall and from player made companions as a result of killing off or letting die a certain number of companions. Like one saying "I had hoped I wouldn't have been picked by charname." You know, red shirt syndrome.

Edited by UncleBourbon
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Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 also had an enormous share of unmemorable/forgettable companions you'd never look twice at. Eight companions is enough (even if it's the bare minimum) because it means you'd have to play the game twice to adventure in a party with all of them and see all their scenes.

 

As you said: quality > quantity.

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IMO, PS:T had 7 potential companions, so PE is already bigger than that. :p

 

 

Edit: But depending on how Obsidian decides to implement romances, if at all, then 8 may not be enough.

Edited by Ieo

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Each companion is exponential on the amount of dialogue/banter they have to write, so I am pretty sure that is why they stopped at 8. If they want detailed characters near the level of Planescape then limiting the number of companions is probably a requirement.

 

While I agree with you in regards to the player hall adventurers not being real companions, they do give you the freedom to swap in a slot of two to get the tactical balance you want while retaining core NPCs in some of the slots, so you really get a lot of options for what your party makeup will look like, as well as having deep characters you can explore and work with.

Edited by Regenshire

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"Less is more," as artists like to say. It's a bit like a TV show or a movie in that sense; too many characters reduce the amount of character development they can perform on each individual.


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Where does the information come from? I didn't think there would be just 8 companions to choose from...


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If the companions are anywhere as well done as the ones in PS:T, then I'm fine with eight. I'd imagine that they might add one or two in the expansion, and there are always mods to add a bit more variety.

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More than enough I would say. Quality over Everyone above me said it, so there is no need to repeat it. And we can always depend on the adventurer's hall(I hope they find a better name ingame) for extra/replacement hands in battle.

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I think it'll be enough to begin with. I bet they all have unique backgrounds and personality. I'm not concerned, but I wouldn't mind to see the amount of companions increase in a future DLC or expansion. The follower's that has been shown looks amazing, and I bet they all will add a lot to the story and overall experience.

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If the companions are anywhere as well done as the ones in PS:T, then I'm fine with eight. I'd imagine that they might add one or two in the expansion, and there are always mods to add a bit more variety.

Exactly, with the expansion they said that they will probably add some content for every aspect of the game.

We can expect a city, dungeon, quests, probably new monster, and I expect at least 1 more companion.

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Nah, I think it's plenty. I want to see really well fleshed out companions, with multiple quests and branching character arcs. Having only 8 will let them give each companion the attention to detail to bring them to life. Good companions are the single most important thing in the game, for me. Games so rarely do this well, but I think Obsidian could really make this a landmark in terms of well-written NPCs.

 

Remember also that you can only bring 5 of the companions with you at a time. That means at any given time, you could be missing out on input from 3 of the companions. The more there are, the less of that content you're going to be able to see in a single playthrough and the less interaction there will be with each character.

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Eight companions is enough, and the expansion may have some as well.

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I find 8 more than enough, really. Altho for me this does depend a little on when/how you would meet up with the various possibles - how soon you could pick/choose from the total 8. If I'm half-way through the whole game before I meet even half of them, I might feel that's a bit ... gameplay and choice-restrictive.


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One thing PE is different from PS:T is that no companion is needed for main plot..

so it's more like "addons" to the whole story.

Since some people don't want any companion at all, I think is a good number.

And I agree with others, quality over quantity!! The most important thing is how well their stories are written.

Just like NWN2 MotB companions are better than NWN2 companions, even though MotB has less companions to choose from

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8 is absolutely fine, if they have a lot of depth to them.

 

If you want to experiment with different party setups / class combinations, that's what the Adventurer's Hall is for.

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Less companions means more reactivity in the same timeframe.

 

Avellone himself said, that he, looking back, would rather have done less companions in KOTOR2.

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Obsidian have already commented these companions will have alot more depth than BG2 companions and each take around 2 months to write?

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Avellone himself said, that he, looking back, would rather have done less companions in KOTOR2.

I ****ing knew it!

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8 is pretty much the perfect amount in my opinion. It's just enough to cover all your bases well (not enough for every class, but enough to cover every conceivable basic function within a group). Any more than that and you run the risk of not having enough time/resources to properly devote to each companion and you wind up with shallow companions. I'd rather have a smaller number of well fleshed out, interesting, colorful companions, than a whole bunch of cardboard cutouts.

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Less companions means more reactivity in the same timeframe.

 

Avellone himself said, that he, looking back, would rather have done less companions in KOTOR2.

 

I like this idea. Some games can get really cluttered with companions, I think 8 is more than enough if not too many.


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