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Reading about the confirmed attributes and one thing struck me about spell AOE, what if the Wizard who manipulates the damage can mitigate its effects on his companions? One assumes that the Caster is in control of his creation, or else how can he shape and direct it, so why not have him proof his companions against these effects? Obviously there should be a price for this, as a matter of strategy and balance, perhaps a daily or per encounter ability is burned up in the casting of these wards.

 

Would this totally unbalance the game, and destroy the usefulness of various protection spells, or would the fact that it is only the allied Caster's spells that are warded against and it does not affect the enemies spellcasting one jot make it more palatable?

 

Well ladies and gentlemen, is this heretical thought crime that eliminates careful tactical play or careful preparation by wise players and blessed by He On Earth?

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Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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Honestly, I would just prefer that the player have more tools to execute a get-my-allies-out-of-the-area-while-keeping-the-foes-inside-the-area-and-casting-the-AOE-spell-to-effect maneuver.

 

The reason AOE friendly-fire is a problem in the first place is that, where your friends are is typically where the enemies are. In Dragon Age: Origins, my awesome Mage character could cast Earthquake, and it was the size of Texas. However, there was almost no way to move my players out of the gigantic circle without the enemies simply following. The best you could do (and this is so in MOST games) is play the "skirt the radius edge" game, where you try to meticulously have your allies lure all their attackers JUST to the edge of the spell's radius, so that you can hit the foes, but don't quite hit your allies.

 

I don't know that I'd want any easy method of just casting anyway and not worrying about where my friends are (shielding them, for example), because the fact that I have to worry about that is kind of what's interesting there. But, like I said, the game needs to give you means' by which to actually execute feasible plans. Not always, or anything.

 

Err... simply put, I'd rather have to worry about not-hitting them, but have some methods of accomplishing the not-hitting them part, than simply gain a means of eliminating the worry altogether. But maybe that' s just me.

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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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I think that's fair, and certainly the enormous usefulness of web, hold person and all of the various Druid spells in Icewind Dale (for instance) is one way to go. There's an enormous amount of satisfaction in a well made plan being executed, and the success being solely down to your own tactics, though one could argue that good preparation is a valid part of those tactics. But yes such warding might be a little too easy.

 

Edit: Perhaps this kind of warding might only be applied to the Wizards own Arcane Veil to protect himself?

Edited by Nonek
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Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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One assumes that the Caster is in control of his creation, or else how can he shape and direct it, so why not have him proof his companions against these effects? Obviously there should be a price for this, as a matter of strategy and balance, perhaps a daily or per encounter ability is burned up in the casting of these wards.

 

I liked in the IE games to immunize my party to an element, say acid, and then lob AoE spells of that element around, like Death Fog.  It required sacrificing a lot more spell slots for protection spells, but it felt like it rewarded making that tradeoff in your spellbook - and when enemies did it (particularly with the SCS mod) it made protection-removal spells more important too.  You're suggesting a kind of metamagic spell to transform your AoE spells into party friendly, yes?  That sounds like a good idea.  Maybe the spell and ability systems can have both - a metamagic spell that enemies can't counter that, say, reduces the % of the damage the party might take, and hard-counter buffs the enemy can dispel.  The more, the merrier imo.

 

I'm not sure I'm reading you correctly, Lephys, but when you say, "I don't know that I'd want any easy method of just casting anyway and not worrying about where my friends are (shielding them, for example)," are you saying you wouldn't want these buffs and metamagic spells/abilities?  I guess I don't see what the tactical interest in "skirt the edge" is?  If you do it to free up spell/ability slots from the buffs, that might be interesting, but if there are no such buffs you're giving up, what's the interest, just positioning?

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So the game WILL have friendly fire? I actually wanted to open a thread myself to ask this questions, but in some older threads the general consensus was that almost everyone was okay with it.

 

And DA:O had friendly fire? o.0

 

Damn, this means I'll really have to be tactical if we can't switch it off :p

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or it could be linked to the accuracy. X accuracy, reduces by X% the ff damage of an aoe spell

DAO on pc had ff always on, unlike the Xbox version that only had ff on highest difficulty

Edited by teknoman2
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To me the real problem here isn't friendly fire or size of the aoe, although I really like Lephys' suggestion of being able to control the aoe radius/diameter. Magical magic!

 

To me the problem is view distance. The IE games view distance/fog of war was one of the few things that often peeved me. It was too small. I really got annoyed whenever I stumbled upon an enemy party in tight spaces and couldn't use range effectively for aoe spells (i.e., cast spells behind enemy party). If the view distance and spell range were both increased, then it would help accommodate larger diameter aoe's.

 

Also, I think the fog of war system generally needs an upgrade over the IE one.

Edited by TRoar

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So the game WILL have friendly fire? I actually wanted to open a thread myself to ask this questions, but in some older threads the general consensus was that almost everyone was okay with it.

 

And DA:O had friendly fire? o.0

 

Damn, this means I'll really have to be tactical if we can't switch it off :p

 

Point of fact I don't really know, I assumed that it would be since the game is catered for the players of the IE games, but Mr Sawyer may have other plans.


Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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It would please me tremendously if friendly fire is in, and also if the AOE areas are a bit fuzzy along the edges, so even if you can see some graphics marking the limits of an Acid Storm or something, there will still be collateral damage to those hanging around along the perimeter of the AOE. Powerful spells, especially AOE should come at a price, and I'd love to see the barbarian's Cleave included in this.

 

Picture something like this:

"Me strike hard and long!!!"

"NOOO!! FHELGARTH!!"

"Oh. Me sad now. Little Orlan look pale..." *Fhelgarth wanders off, and sits under a bramble bush and is besides himself of shame*

Edited by IndiraLightfoot

*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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DA games have friendly fire but its sadly tied into the difficulty instead of being a universal toggle. Since I didn't have a computer to play it I was even sadder to find out they consider console gamers giant retards and shifted the FF balance all over the place on consoles. Nightmare only had 50% where as it was 50% for 'normal' diff on PC, and 100% for nightmare. I just don't get why companys feel the need to shift so many things around like that, GUI I get, difference means of interaction and all that but... really.
 

And, IndiraLightFoot, the thing I find most amusing about your example is to increase the cleave radius that idiot barb would have a ton of INT heh. As I mentioned in the confirmed attribute thread though looks like they're thinking about making it so bonus radius from INT (and maybe other sources?) are a non-FF zone. So only the base zone of a spell would have FF in effect which would be kinda an interesting way to handle things. Here's a quote from Sawyer on that topic, it's from the 70th update thread.

 

We are looking into either allowing you to scale the effect size or have the "bonus" area be a foe-only AoE.  E.g., if you cast fireball and it normally has a radius of 4m, but it's grown to 6.5m because of your Int, the area added between 4m and 6.5m only affects enemies.  We probably won't get to it for a while, but we've been thinking about it.

 

So definitely gonna have friendly fire, maybe there will be a toggle, and there maybe some double-radius thing with FF and non-FF areas depending on base vs bonus size. I kinda like the idea.


Def Con: kills owls dead

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I believe they had mentioned there would be FF before and it would be a toggle with its default state tied to the difficulty level (off on easy, on for hard)

 

Or I could have made that all up


Free games updated 3/6/19

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Considering the fact that Sawyer has been cautious to rote rituals such as buffing, I have no idea on how he would answer the question.  In IE games, AoE management definitely required preparations ranging from party composition to spell/equipment choices (Oh beloved ring of free movement).

 

Also, how would the porpotion among targetted defences (FOR/REF/PSY) of AoE spells/abilities be?

 

 

Here's a quote from Sawyer on that topic, it's from the 70th update thread.

 

We are looking into either allowing you to scale the effect size or have the "bonus" area be a foe-only AoE.  E.g., if you cast fireball and it normally has a radius of 4m, but it's grown to 6.5m because of your Int, the area added between 4m and 6.5m only affects enemies.  We probably won't get to it for a while, but we've been thinking about it.

 

So definitely gonna have friendly fire, maybe there will be a toggle, and there maybe some double-radius thing with FF and non-FF areas depending on base vs bonus size. I kinda like the idea.

Yeah, investing on INT might make otherwise useful spells/abilities less useful or even almost useless if the areas get large enough to cover too many party members...

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@ShadySands: Yeah I believe easy has it off by default and I think playing in there survival/iron man whatever they're calling it mode has FF on. I know they have 2 sets of 'modes' that come with a bunch of toggleable stuff which you can set for the actual difficulties as you see fit. So, should be an FF toggle for sure.

 

@Wombat: Heh, yeah for sure, if the radius gets to insane that could prove troublesome if there wasn't a halfway radius friendly split. As for the 3 main non-deflection defenses, hes specifically stated hes aiming to have them all be of equal use. So I'd imagine rather all over the place. Though the way someone builds their specific character could easily focus on one area over the other and the defenses being important to the player has far more to do with the variety and frequency of what enemies use that you run into then what the player has available.


Def Con: kills owls dead

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Heh, yeah for sure, if the radius gets to insane that could prove troublesome if there wasn't a halfway radius friendly split.

Yeah, that's what I meant in my previous post but the designers seem to be yet to decide.

 

 

As for the 3 main non-deflection defenses, hes specifically stated hes aiming to have them all be of equal use. So I'd imagine rather all over the place. Though the way someone builds their specific character could easily focus on one area over the other and the defenses being important to the player has far more to do with the variety and frequency of what enemies use that you run into then what the player has available.

I was reading the related part of the official wiki

Reflex (REF): Represents a character's ability to dodge area of effect attacks. It is based on Dexterity and Perception.

Among three defenses, only Ref had the explicit comment about AoE,  which made me wonder.  Unfortunately, I have difficulty in finding the original post by Sawyer, though.

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Yeah I think when they say 'area of effect attacks' they specifically mean damage related ones. Fortitude mentioned physical ailments such as disease or poison. If there was an 'Poison Cloud' spell that creates an area of poison, that would most likely be fortitude, not reflex. Or a Mass Charm spell would ultimately be Psyche instead of reflex due to the base nature of the spell. Hell with that said I can bet you single target stuff like a fire bolt would still use reflex as a means to see if you land a hit with it.

 

I could see them tagging on a reflex at the beginning of the spell to see if the character 'dodges out' of the area, which it then moves that character outside the radius of said spell, and anyone who fails it rolls their Psyche to see if they're effected. Or the poison cloud scenario a fort for the poison if they're still in the radius or walk into it after it's been created. Feels a bit complex for the sake of being complex and I don't know if they want to try to add in some kinda 'dodge' graphic or how they'd determine where the character ends up if its a success. Seems like a bit more trouble then it's worth really but would be an interesting twist for that stuff.

 

-edit-

Looking over some of that wiki stuff on the classes, Druids got Firebrand. Basically creates a sword made entirely out of fire. Which makes all your melee attacks go for there reflex instead of deflection (its a sword made entirely from fire, no metal so... makes sense, armor aint gonna do much). Also on the Barbarian there is an ability you activate that causes, for a short time (or maybe its a stance? its a bit vague atm, work in progress and all) that changes all your melee attacks to go against a targets Fortitude defense instead of deflection as well. Which is really interesting I think... this games gonna be so much fun. ^.^

Edited by Adhin

Def Con: kills owls dead

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We are looking into either allowing you to scale the effect size or have the "bonus" area be a foe-only AoE.  E.g., if you cast fireball and it normally has a radius of 4m, but it's grown to 6.5m because of your Int, the area added between 4m and 6.5m only affects enemies.  We probably won't get to it for a while, but we've been thinking about it.

 

I would still prefer there to be friendly fire in the int bonus area, but maybe half damage instead of full damage.

Edited by TRoar
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Chalk me up for the "scroll wheel to adjust AoE" idea. Removing or reducing FF around the edges sounds cheesy to me.

How about making the edges of the AOE fuzzy too? I think it would probably upset those who want exact systems and hence control-freak predictability for strategic reasons, but I'd like to perceive for instance a fire ball as something inherently wild, magic or not. Even the best mages shouldn't have control of every edge of a flame at the periphery of a raging fire, whether they've channelled it or not.

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*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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@Adhin  Yeah, the least surprising but most likely way would keep things as they were (if not broken...) while making it disabled in easy mode.  In that case, as you said, the designers would just assign spells/abilities to area effect/single target with equal proportion.  At least, letting characters can dodge any type of AoE with Ref first doesn't sound right in terms of balancing.  Probably, I read too much into just a small piece of info.  That said, of course, quite many things talked here are more or less conjunctures.

As for the "bonus" area, for the time being, I'd leave the decision to the designers since they are the only people who directly know how things actually work.  Also, I'm inclined to think basic frameworks are better to be thought out from the top-down perspective rather than a democratic/grassroot-ish way.  Once the designers are confident in them, I'd like them to ask public opinions to avoid hard-landing.  I don't know about other people but, at the current stage, I feel like blind-folded.

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And DA:O had friendly fire? o.0

As others have mentioned, it's a toggle (on by default on the PC), but weapon-based AoE attacks don't produce FF regardless of the setting. Scattershot more-or-less breaks the mid to late game because of this... :(

 

I'd love to see the barbarian's Cleave included in this.

Agreed, that'd be interesting. But at the least, ranged weapon-based AoE attacks should produce FF. If archers/musketeers aren't strong enough to be viable, giving them FF-free AoE attacks is NOT the solution.

 

I would still prefer there to be friendly fire in the int bonus area, but maybe half damage instead of full damage.

Agreed.

Edited by ddillon

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This influx of new members has livened up this forum and there is again a lot of very interesting (and some less interesting) discussion going on.

It's a shame its so late because it's an inspiration for ideas which will never make it in now that development is well under way.

 

Reading this thread got me started thinking about spellcrafting...

 

developing your own spells with a set of possible attributes.

 

You could create, provided you have the right pre-reqs, a spell with

x effect y power z shape. The resulting spell would have a stamina cost/casting time affected by the power. Which you could tweak one way or the other.

 

So for example. I want to make a spell which (x) Causes confusion (y) beats will save caster will +5 (z) spreads outwards from the caster like a cone.

My cone of confusion spell would cost a lot because confusion is a powerful ability, +5 will is a lot of bonus power, and the cone shape makes it easier to avoid hitting your party. So it would have a cost of 20% stamina (getting that number out of my ass) and a cooldown of once per rest. If I wanted to make it once per encounter, it would have to cost 60% stamina, and further increase would be too powerful.

 

Now sorry for derailing the thread, move along...

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I approve of friendly fire. It is a tactical problem which enhances the game. It also allows spells to be designed in a way that they are powerful and effective. Mitigating their effects should be possible, either through use of protection spells or meta-magic and abilities. Overall, friendly fire enhances a game by bringing intricacy and verisimilitude.

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Hopefully it's clear my last post was meant in an inquisitive way.  It reads a bit impatient.

 

My hope for these kinds of things is always just to have interesting, complex tradeoffs to manage.  Friendly fire seems conducive to that aim, especially since in addition to the direct tradeoff (hitting enemies vs. risk of hitting friends) there could then be tradeoffs in mitigating that first tradeoff.  It's encouraging to see so many posters apparently on that same basic page.

 

My hesitation on having custom spells is that those systems tend to have simpler tradeoffs to make the spell design understandable and probably for the AI.  It'd be great to have a game that overcame that problem.  If you had all the things JFSOCC mentions there wouldn't be that issue. 

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or it could be linked to the accuracy. X accuracy, reduces by X% the ff damage of an aoe spell

DAO on pc had ff always on, unlike the Xbox version that only had ff on highest difficulty

 

Chalk me up for the "scroll wheel to adjust AoE" idea. Removing or reducing FF around the edges sounds cheesy to me.

 

I think the combination of these could be very interesting. Whereas Intelligence can govern the maximum area of effect for a spell, Dexterity/Accuracy could be used to refine the area of effect to a smaller radius using the mouse-wheel. This could perhaps be in addition to Dexterity/Accuracy granting a bonus percentage to either avoid or reduce damaging friendlies that fall within any such radius.

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