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Irrational? I'm posting absolutely nothing that wasn't already present as a rule in the IE games. Are you arguing that those games had "irrational" gameplay?

 

If so then YES. Call me Irrational and point me to an asylum. I'll take the IE games in all their "irrational" glory any day over the rigid, constricting, DULL nonsense you're arguing for.

Edited by Stun

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Give it a rest, fellows.  There's precious little to be said on this topic that the two of you haven't covered in some way, so let's move on, please.


http://cbrrescue.org/

 

Go afield with a good attitude, with respect for the wildlife you hunt and for the forests and fields in which you walk. Immerse yourself in the outdoors experience. It will cleanse your soul and make you a better person.----Fred Bear

 

http://michigansaf.org/

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@ Karkarov: So why is this topic not closed yet? I think at least some mod is interested in this instant death-discussion... and not only the pro/contra

 

It would be a shame if noone would at least think about some instant-death mechanics in P:E and how it could be implemented. Even if the devs did state that there will be nothing like that. Because it is also a game for the players and I want to have a little influence on it.

 

(It is true though that in the last pages Lephys and Stun were a bit ... persistent. At some point I browsed most of it ... What influence do these guys want to have with that?)

Because like all good forum mods they don't want to close a thread that is seeing discussion unless it is against forum rules or going overboard.  This one isn't there.... yet.

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First: Could I get a bit of a recap on the "core" of the discussion? I don't care much for "Lephys and Stun are arguing" but what is the underlying sentiment and idea? The "broad" picture basically. A summary would be nice (for those who lurk these forums as well I believe, new and old members who haven't followed the thread, 11 pages is quite a lot).

Second, a bit of a recap of what I said and a point I want to make come across:

The only thing Josh said was "I don't like Save-or-Die effects". That does not mean that there are Death Spells that cause instant death. What it means is that there will be no instant death effects that you can't defend against. In other words, PE will most likely have a ton of "Die Die Die!-Effects" and "Die Die Die!-Tactics" for both the AI and the Player alike. So why should Death Spells be excluded?

Some things I want to emphasize as well if Death Spells (that cause "Death-Effect") are in PE:

 

1. Protect Against "Death-Effect" Spells that you can cast before the Death Spell has been cast in-combat. A Level 1 Protect Spell could make a 100% Sure Hit turn into a 75% Hit (See #4).

2. Priority Targeting & "Color" Coding. Display a "warning" text in some way that the Player knows that "Incoming Death-Effect".
Examples:
- Aloth says "The enemy is channeling a powerful spell!" in the Dialogue tab.
- It says in the Combat log: "Enemy Wizard is channeling/readying Death Spell"
- Enemy gets a specific type of "aura" or "color" when channeling a Death Spell. Giving the Player a clear notion that the Enemy is specifically readying a Death Spell.

^A good example (Top of my head): Warframe
There are these pesky little flying robots in Warframe that does not attack, but they shield everything around them. So if you are facing 10 enemies and a Shield Robot, you have to target the robot first or it will replenish all the shields over and over again on every single enemy. Death Spells should have this if they are in PE. Scripting the AI to target the Player too.

3. Stuns, Grapples, Taunts (Mocking) or whatever. Channeling or readying a Death Spell should take a ton of concentration but first and foremost: Time. Instantaneously casting a Death Spell should not be viable in any way (not even with Buffs or a high enough level). Heck, perhaps even regular damage could interrupt a Death Spell (Shooting an arrow at the Wizard could perhaps negate the Death Spell briefly before the Enemy* can start readying it again).

4. A Death Spell should require a Full on Direct Hit (100% Hit). A 25%, 50%, 75% hit would not cause "Death-Effect" and simply "tickle". Pokeball mechanics boosting chances to get a 100% hit (Poisoning and/or general Weakening of the Enemy). Same thing for the AI, if they Poison you, they get better chances to deal "Death" to you.

 

With all of the above said and done for balance-sake:
A) You engage in a fight.
B) Enemy begins to ready a Death Spell.
C) You notice this by the use of #2.
D) You cast a spell to protect yourself before the Death Spell is cast. Alternatively you move into range and interrupt the Spell.
- Not "Save-or-Die" but "React-or-Die".

*Enemy could also mean Player. I want to put emphasis on that everything that the AI can do the Player should be able to do and vice versa. If the AI can cast Death Spells, then the Player should be able to cast Death Spells. If the Player can defend themselves against Death Spells, then the AI should be able to cast Death Spells.

Final Note: Regardless I hope that Death Spells aren't common in the either the Lore of PE or in the actual Gameplay of PE. I would like to see some of them, perhaps 2 or 3 existent in the game, so building Scripts and Triggers for them should be more simple as well (because they would be such a minor part of the game). A Death Spell is like an "Ultimate" in my opinion.

League of Legends and DotA reference here: Most "Ultimates" in those games can be avoided. For instance, Cho'Gath can't eat you if you're out of range. Darius can't dunk you if you are out of range and Lux can not hit you if you dodge hers etc. etc.

Death Spells could be purely Skill Shots as well. Though then it gets complicated for the AI I would believe, and much easier to dodge and read as a Player.

Edited by Osvir

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I said no such thing.

 

Edit: Although I would argue that luck (specifically) is indeed a core part of the IE games' combat. They all used the D20 system after all.

Edited by Stun

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*Enemy could also mean Player. I want to put emphasis on that everything that the AI can do the Player should be able to do and vice versa. If the AI can cast Death Spells, then the Player should be able to cast Death Spells. If the Player can defend themselves against Death Spells, then the AI should be able to cast Death Spells.

 

Uhm... I meant "then the AI should be able to defend against Death Spells". I was tired.

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Instant death spells are fun because a mechanic that pretty much disregards hitpoints while still doing the same harm that spells which work on hitpoints do is good variety. Also it makes the player fear such spells. To make the latter part fun the player should usually have some idea of when he would encounter such spells or who casts them.

 

Any argument saying instant death spells would be too difficult to play against is not very valid because you have no idea how they would be practically implemented.

Edited by Sheikh

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I said no such thing.

 

 

 

But it IS fair to say that their exclusion constitutes a sharp departure from the very spirit of IE games

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The only thing Josh said was "I don't like Save-or-Die effects". That does not mean that there are Death Spells that cause instant death. What it means is that there will be no instant death effects that you can't defend against. In other words, PE will most likely have a ton of "Die Die Die!-Effects" and "Die Die Die!-Tactics" for both the AI and the Player alike. So why should Death Spells be excluded?

That is not what he said Osvir.

 

He said he was opposed to save or die effects and they would not be in the game because they always came down to "Did I make my save?" or "Did I have my hard counter buff prepared to block the spell in advance?".  Power word kill can be defended against if you have more than 50 hp, but if you dont? Save or die.  He said there would be no abilities like that in game.

 

In short, there will be no instant death spells or effects.  It will never be "Have buff or die" in PE, those are hard counter spells and buffs and he specifically said he was against them and they had no place in the game.

 

The fact that many posters keep overlooking the reality in that PE has no rezzing doesn't help.  This isn't BG where "Oh gosh imoen died, well Jaheria cast raise dead....lol".  When you die in PE you dead, game over, you aren't coming back.

Edited by Karkarov

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The only thing Josh said was "I don't like Save-or-Die effects". That does not mean that there are Death Spells that cause instant death. What it means is that there will be no instant death effects that you can't defend against. In other words, PE will most likely have a ton of "Die Die Die!-Effects" and "Die Die Die!-Tactics" for both the AI and the Player alike. So why should Death Spells be excluded?

That is not what he said Osvir.

 

He said he was opposed to save or die effects and they would not be in the game because they always came down to "Did I make my save?" or "Did I have my hard counter buff prepared to block the spell in advance?".  Power word kill can be defended against if you have more than 50 hp, but if you dont? Save or die.  He said there would be no abilities like that in game.

 

In short, there will be no instant death spells or effects.  It will never be "Have buff or die" in PE, those are hard counter spells and buffs and he specifically said he was against them and they had no place in the game.

 

The fact that many posters keep overlooking the reality in that PE has no rezzing doesn't help.  This isn't BG where "Oh gosh imoen died, well Jaheria cast raise dead....lol".  When you die in PE you dead, game over, you aren't coming back.

 

 

I know, and I didn't even talk about anything you brought up in your post. I am opposed to that sort of thing as well.

 

Let me simplify my post:

 

The IE games = Save-or-Die, Prepare-or-Die, Meta-or-Die

 

What I am suggesting = React-or-Die

 

What this basically mean is that, okay, you forgot to save, your opponent begins to channel a Death Spell. Well ****. What do you do about it? Can you stop it in combat? Can you react to it and turn the tide? That is what I am talking about in my post.

 

"Is there some other way to handle Death Spells that you can counter with 'on the fly' reaction instead of Meta or Preparation?" <- <- <- <- That is what I am trying to bring to light. I am Anti-Save-or-Die Effects as well, but I am not Anti-Death Spells, as long as there are some Anti-"Death Spell"-Spells that fire faster than Death Spells in combat (That got complicated quickly, or did it?).

 

Let's try this instead: Anti-"Save-or-Die" Spells

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"Is there some other way to handle Death Spells that you can counter with 'on the fly' reaction instead of Meta or Preparation?" <- <- <- <- That is what I am trying to bring to light. I am Anti-Save-or-Die Effects as well, but I am not Anti-Death Spells, as long as there are some Anti-"Death Spell"-Spells that fire faster than Death Spells in combat (That got complicated quickly, or did it?).

 

You are talking about going back to the mage combat puzzle that was most of BG2, no thanks.  I want my combat to be less about .... "Ok so the mage has these buffs and is chanting this spell... lets get my mages to cast that to counter this and...."

 

It is not fun, it isn't tactical.  It is RPG Combat via tic tac toe.

 

I have no issue with mages calling a meteor out of the sky that will kill me if I don't do "something".  But that could be taking the mage out, silencing them, moving out of the aoe, buffing myself to survive it, using an ability that cancels out the mages powers, whatever.  That's fine.  I can counter that in lots of ways, heck... if my party is strong enough it may actually be able to survive even if it gets a clean hit.  There is no surviving a death spell though.  No spell if not stopped or mitigated should simply "kill you" the end.

Edited by Karkarov

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"Is there some other way to handle Death Spells that you can counter with 'on the fly' reaction instead of Meta or Preparation?" <- <- <- <- That is what I am trying to bring to light. I am Anti-Save-or-Die Effects as well, but I am not Anti-Death Spells, as long as there are some Anti-"Death Spell"-Spells that fire faster than Death Spells in combat (That got complicated quickly, or did it?).

 

You are talking about going back to the mage combat puzzle that was most of BG2, no thanks.  I want my combat to be less about .... "Ok so the mage has these buffs and is chanting this spell... lets get my mages to cast that to counter this and...."

 

It is not fun, it isn't tactical.  It is RPG Combat via tic tac toe.

 

I have no issue with mages calling a meteor out of the sky that will kill me if I don't do "something".  But that could be taking the mage out, silencing them, moving out of the aoe, buffing myself to survive it, using an ability that cancels out the mages powers, whatever.  That's fine.  I can counter that in lots of ways, heck... if my party is strong enough it may actually be able to survive even if it gets hit eventually.  There is no surviving a death spell though.  No spell if not stopped or mitigated should simply "kill you" the end.

 

*scratches head* But that is exactly what I am suggesting for Death Spells. I also want to note that I'm not suggesting Death Spells around every corner. Instead Death Spells (if present in PE) should be something very very rare. I did suggest 2 or 3 spells? Thinking about it I really mean 2 or 3 encounters.

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Let me simplify my post:

 

The IE games = Save-or-Die, Prepare-or-Die, Meta-or-Die

 

What I am suggesting = React-or-Die

The TL;DR version of all that wasted posting I did back while I thought Stun actually cared about mutual understanding in the dicussion was basically regarding this.

 

Save-or-die: Not really fun at all, as dice-roll saves are purely one little tiny factor within the greater entirety of combat. I don't ever want one factor to play out to absolution. "Hey, a fire elemental! Use water spells AND THEY DIE!" No. I want to use water spells and have them be more effective. I want my active choices to affect the flow of combat.

 

Then, we've got Prepare-or-Die: Again, this is technically cool, by the meaning of the word. But the die doesn't need to be instantaneous. "Oh no, I didn't see the clues that there's be flame elementals here! WE INSTANTLY DIE NOW because I didn't enchant everyone's stuff with fire resistance!" That would be terrible. No. What should happen is that my armor/protection should be significantly less effective against these flame elementals than it would've been had I actually prepared. Which could lead to my death, if I don't try to compensate for that as hard as I can. It should be EASIER for me to die. Not GUARANTEED. That's the whole point. If it's guaranteed, then where's the tactical nature of combat? "How do you take on flame elementals? By getting your fire resistance up to a certain number. Otherwise you just die." That's a 2-path fork. That's literally the least amount of tactical option you can have regarding a given dilemma.

"What should we do, sir? We can either fire arrows at them and they'll die, or we can not-fire arrows at them, and we'll make absolutely no progress!" "Hmmmm... I'm thinking, Lieutenant!"

 

So, yeah, that brings us to your React-or-Die:

 

Awesome concept. Only, like Karkarov said, I don't think it should be a reflexive, instantaneous thing. Not across the board, at least. I don't inherently have any problem with some slow-moving orb thing that gets fired across the battlefield, and if you touch it, you die. Something like that, maybe. Because that provides options. It's just time some dive, or cast the one correct counter-spell or you die. That's no fun.

 

The core of tactics is overcoming limitation. Coming up with a clever way to accomplish something that isn't easily accomplish. Not finding the one correct puzzle piece to fit into the puzzle. If you run into a limitation, and there's no alternate route to take, then you've had your tactical decision-making stripped from you.

 

I don't care if things kill my party. I just want things to tactically kill my party. So, yeah, I want to react-or-die. But I want there to be more than just one stroke between reaction and death (in the design of the system, not in every single situation... obviously if I have 1 hitpoint left, and I fail to properly react to ANY amount of incoming damage in any form, I'm dead.) I can react by changing targets, or using spells/abilities I typically don't use. Change my strategy. Swap weapons. Move people in a different way. If I don't find a way to properly take on the enemy, I die. That's fine with me. There are OODLES of ways in which to take on the enemy, and that's what's so exciting about tactics. When the enemy uses his "I KEEL YOU" spell, there's only 1 way to take on the enemy: Don't get hit by that spell. There is no swap out characters option, or switch to defensive spells to mitigate damage, or take down the other foes first so that everyone can collaborate on that foe, etc. There is only "whatever you do, DO NOT let that thing cast that spell!"

 

Again, it's not the death that's a problem. It's the instantness of it.

  • Like 3

Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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*scratches head* But that is exactly what I am suggesting for Death Spells. I also want to note that I'm not suggesting Death Spells around every corner. Instead Death Spells (if present in PE) should be something very very rare. I did suggest 2 or 3 spells? Thinking about it I really mean 2 or 3 encounters.

 

No... not the same.  There IS a difference between "Stop this Meteor spell or we die!" and "Stop this Death spell or we die!"

 

One of them is killing me by simply doing more damage than I can take.  This means that, theoretically, I could prepare myself in such a way or eventually be strong enough that I could actually survive being hit by it.  A death spell is just death.... it either hits you and you die, or you don't.  It doesn't matter if I am level 100 or level 5.  If the death spell fires and the "conditions" are met I am dead. 

 

I could, again, theoretically survive the meteor if that spell goes off.  You can not survive "you die" spells.

 

That's the difference.

Edited by Karkarov
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^ Besides, a meteor spell generally isn't even designed the same way as a death spell. The meteor doesn't try to touch you, and then you roll a saving throw, and then if you fail the throw, DEATH! No... the meteor is generally AOE-based, or actually, physically avoidable, via movement, and usually (if it does that much damage) takes a lot longer time to cast than other spells, and/or actually only deals heavy amounts of damage over time, requiring channeling (like a meteor storm spell that keeps raining highly-damaging meteors down upon you for up to 6 seconds or something, so long as the caster continues channeling it). Why do you think they don't just have that target someone, and they all roll saving throws, and if the rolls fail, a 9999-damage meteor strikes whoever failed it? Because, that just doesn't even make any sense in the context of combat. No, there are oodles of factors involved purely in the meteor even being a concern or not. Maybe you got out of the AOE range. Maybe you stopped the spell. Maybe you got lucky and rolled high dodges. Then, even when it DOES hit you, it can hit you to varying degrees, causing the flow of combat to react to various different extents. Maybe you expose different people to the possibility of meteor, because they have more armor or faster movement speeds, etc. You can even lure enemies into the meteor area, or forcibly relocate them there, using awesome abilities! The fun never ends with tactics! 8D!

 

There's not just "Did you or did you NOT get meteored?!" Get meteored: dead. Don't get meteored?

 

Not only that, but an instant-death spell either kills you, or does nothing ('cause you resisted it). Even if you "resist" a meteor, you just get less hurt. Like I said, varying degrees of outcome. Did you just lose 80% of your health? Well, now you have to change tactics, probably. At least with that character. did you only lose 30% of your health? Well, you might be fine. Depends, really.

 

Did you get hit with Death? Well, you're dead. So... that's the end of that. Did you resist Death? Well, then you're totally perfectly healthy, as absolutely no harm came to you! ^_^

 

It's literally the same thing as getting hit by the meteor, only minus all the other possible outcomes.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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What I am suggesting is leave it up to the Player to "Resist Death" instead of basing it on a "Lucky Dice Roll".

That's why what I am trying to continuously suggest is the same as "Resist Meteor Spell" and "Resist Death Spell" in the context of what I am suggesting.

I am not suggesting "Hey guys let's bring back the lucky dice rolls Death Spells from the IE games". No. I am trying to suggest something new that the Player can control. Kind of like Dark Souls (this is an extreme example/concept of what I am suggesting): if you don't dodge the Dragon on the bridge, you are most likely dead <- Death-Effect. But you can dodge it, right?

The complaints seem to be, in this thread at least, that Death Spells in the IE games were "Hit or Miss" Spells based on lucky rolls. If they hit, you are dead. If they miss, nothing.

So what I am suggesting is to remove the chaos of "Luck" and implement "Awareness", "Reaction", "Tactics" and "Skill" elements regarding Death Spells for "Balance's Sake".

 

EDIT: I am suggesting the implementation of "tools" (options) for the Player to defend themselves against Death Spells.

1. Enemy casts "You die"-Spell
2. Player casts "I think not"-Spell

Edited by Osvir
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@Osvir: I really like your react-or-die concept! If possible there should be enough tools to evade the instant death:

 

"I think not" spells might just be possible for mages, but what if you didn't prepare that spell or you have no mage in your group?? Wouldn't it be better to have it as a skill in each class? All non mages also should have possibilities besides dodging and killing/silencing/disturbing the mage to diminish a death effect. Maybe you can use a shield against the death-orb or fire an anti-magic arrow at it? I would be very very happy about something like this.

 

One more thought: The faster you react the less damage/death you should get. Protection spells against death or other very strong effects should either last long (1 min) and provide 25% less damage/health loss (you wouldn't be killed instantly!) or last 5 seconds and provide 75% protection (you lose only 25% of your health). The earlier you shoot an anti magic arrow at the death orb, the less effective it will be if it hits you.

Edited by Morgulon the Wise

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1. Enemy casts "You die"-Spell

2. Player casts "I think not"-Spell

I understand what you are saying Osvir, but that's what we call a hard counter system.  It is "Irenicus casts Power Word Kill, but you have Death Ward".  The only difference is now I have to cast Death Ward during the fight instead of before the fight.  It is still save or die, or hard counter or die.

 

I will try one more time.  How to survive a meteor...

 

I could.... have my character use a self buff that makes them take half damage.  I could cast an anti magic field that lowers all magic damage in that area 25%.  I could use a spell that temporarily gives me an elemental form making me immune to fire.  I could simply step outside of the aoe range of the meteor.  I could use a fire resistance spell on the party.  I could use a limited teleportation to move out of the way.  I could use a buff that doubles my stamina temporarily making it possible for me to take the hit.  I could use a skill that gives me a 50% chance of dodging all aoe based damage.  I could simply kill the person summoning the meteor.  I could silence the caster too.  Etc Etc.  You are beginning to get the idea by now right...?  Lots and lots of ways to defeat the Meteor.  I am not even listing them all this is just off the top of my head.

 

Meanwhile VS the death spell... it isn't an aoe... no moving away, no 50% chance to dodge it, no teleporting out of the way...  It doesn't do damage it just "kills you" so doesn't matter if I buff my HP,  increase my damage resistance, turn into a fire elemental, etc etc.  50% of death is still death.  I could still kill the caster, try to "silence" him, which are valid tactics for any spell... but the only tactic I have besides the one of two that work on everything is hard counter cast Protection From Death.

 

Which of those two spells sounds more tactically interesting to you?  Which of them sounds more fun for the player to counter?  Which of them punishes you for forgetting to bring that "one spell"?

 

I will borrow a quote from Alton Brown the guy who did the cooking show "Good Eats".  "There are no uni-taskers in my Kitchen."  In other words, a tool that can only do one thing is not as useful or interesting as a tool that can do two or three.  Protection from death can only protect you from death, death spell can only kill you or not kill you.

Edited by Karkarov
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I never said that you require a single-sort of spell to stop a Death Spell.

I like options too, and different ways to stop things or use things are always fun and tactical. I'll repeat myself:

"Death Spells should require a 100% sure hit"

 

- This means that a Level 1 Protect Spell could defend against 25%.
- If the enemy weakens me with confuse, silence, stun, poison etc. etc. that would heighten the chances of a sure hit.

- Additionally: Some death spells could be conditional or having "requirements". "Cast Honey Poison first to follow up with Demon Killer Hornets". 

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I don't understand the stigma towards death spells. For all purposes considered, I assume we are speaking within the realm of D&D mechanics.

  • Traps frequently kill characters in many games without even offering a chance to respond. It's expected that when in a dungeon, you should expect traps. Traditionally, rogues have been the only characters adequately equipped to detect and disarm them. Nobody complains?
  • Dragon breath has a very strong chance of killing an entire party with a single utterence--unless you are protected against X Element. It's expected that, when given reasonable suspicion, you should expect to deal with a breath weapon. Traditionally, only magic users have been able to grant protection from this and only at various degrees. Nobody complains?
  • Critical hits have the capability of killing many character outright. This can occur any time a weapon is used, with no limit. Many fighters have the ability to increase the frequency and potency of their critical hits. There are very few ways to mitigate this risk. Nobody complains?
  • Some magic users have the ability to damage, manipulate, and kill entire parties with a single spell. It's expected that, in a world of magic, you will face magic users. Traditionally, only magic users have the ability to provide hard counters to offensive magic. Suddenly, this is a problem?

Death spells have never been any more difficult to overcome with a roll than any other spell--often times, they are much more easily foiled than any other spell. There are many ways to provide, not merely a hard counter, but to enhance saving throws to mitigate risk. Furthermore, Death spells generally have limitations on what challenge rating of creatures can be effected, and how many. There is also the typical "all or nothing" caveat. Many variants of death spells even require multiple saves, screening through multiple "opposing stats" giving the defender an extreme advantage.

 

There is nothing unfair about instant death spells. There are many other threats which provide an equivalent threat, or are even more severe and difficult to respond to. To me, it merely sounds like many players here do not wish to be bothered with things such as scouting, information gathering spells, or being bothered to be prepared for a contingency that many never come.

 

I'm not saying that every mageling should toss direct death about. I believe that it should be a higher tier ability, which proportionate inputs or risk to the magic user. However, it shouldn't matter if a foe kills you in one round with a sleep spell followed by a "coup de grace", or outright via trap, breath weapon, or other spell/ability. In a world of magic, character should be prepared to deal with magic. By no means should a spell system be limited in scope because some players may find coping with it irksome.

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What the above poster said. Death spells were a complete joke in Baldur's Gate II. Any enemies that you ever wanted to use them on were immune or virtually immune to them, and you almost always resisted their effects yourself, or had the ability to be immune to it, (Death Ward, Periapt of Life Protection, etc.), or could boost your saving throws to be virtually immune, etc.

 

But of course, since there won't be any reviving magic in P:E, (urgh), I imagine there won't be any "true" instant death magic, either.

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Death spells are great in my opinion. Really. I don't mean I want them spammed at every encounters, but they really add something, that element of danger which makes you want to investigate more before you enter a dungeon, and more carefully when you're in it. Instant kill spells can be devastating, but they must be easily countered. In BG2, a simple protection from death allowed me to avoid the problem of death spells. And past a certain level the protection from death was as necessary as were other pieces of equipment. Just be prepared. But I would have liked even more a system where you can use counterspells to avoid such deadly effect. A combination of preparation and reactivity would be the best one.
I know counterspells sounds like something reserved for spellcasters, but I think also of other ways to counter or negate a spell. like going out of reach of a spellcaster, by putting an obstacle (terrain, corner, magical wall, whatever...) between the spellcaster and the target before the casting time ends. One other way would be to interrupt the spellcaster before he finishes casting his death spell (blind him, attack him, whatever you can do to make him stop).
With such options, death spells would become interesting events which will test you preparation and reactivity, not absolute doom for whoever aren't prepared enough. Actually it's as it should be in every games. Some obstacle just reduces your resources ( hp, mp, potions, ...etc) and some, more serious, are more like "be smart or die". And in the worst case where you're not prepared enough and don't manage to escape the spell in time you still have the saving throw as a last chance to survive.

In my opinion if you missed your preparations, your reactions and your saving throws, maybe you just deserve to die... no?

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