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New PC Gamer interview with Josh.

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Nothing earth-shattering here, but enjoy: http://www.pcgamer.com/uk/2014/04/18/pillars-of-eternity-interview-josh-sawyer-on-world-building-magic-psychic-warriors-and-more/

 

It could've been mentioned before (I've missed it in that case) but there will apparently be a system where parties with less members will gain more exp than a full party.

Companions will leave if you do something that directly conflicts with their interests.

Edited by Starwars
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PC Gamer: How would you compare the combat system to the Infinity Engine games, both in terms of similarities and differences?


Josh Sawyer: ... (i skipped 1st paragraph)


 


Some of the things I focused on eliminating are things that felt like really repetitive actions that didn’t necessarily make the game more fun. The older games, including the games I worked on, relied heavily on something called pre-buffing. So in a lot of cases you’d have, say, three casters spending four to six rounds before every fight dumping a bunch of spells on your characters to get them into combat shape. Not super interesting. We wanted buffs to stay in the game and still feel powerful, but now there’s an opportunity cost for them, meaning they can only be cast in combat. So you can cast your crazy haste spells or blessings or prayers or whatever, but you have to do it in the context of the combat, because instead of them becoming a sort of no-brainer thing you do just out of habit, it should be something you choose to do in the context of a battle. If you choose to cast that buff spell, you’re choosing to cast it instead of a fireball or a lightning bolt. Ideally we want the choices you make to be tactical decisions made in the moment.


 


Now that is very interesting. Congratz to Mr Josh.


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Matilda is a Natlan woman born and raised in Old Vailia. She managed to earn status as a mercenary for being a professional who gets the job done, more so when the job involves putting her excellent fighting abilities to good use.

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OMG I love reputation and personality mechanism !! This is like a dream coming true for me ! Paired with Obsidian's quality writing, my guess is PoE is gonna be one of the most interactive to player decisions RPGs ever to have existed.

 

 

Congratulations PoE team !!!


Matilda is a Natlan woman born and raised in Old Vailia. She managed to earn status as a mercenary for being a professional who gets the job done, more so when the job involves putting her excellent fighting abilities to good use.

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OMG I love reputation and personality mechanism !!

I'm particularly interested to see if they successfully pull off the dialogue-choice-based personality system as described in the article. Bioware tried to do it in Dragon Age 2, and they failed. But they failed because (1) There was no game world reputation system tracking (aggressive Hawke was not treated any differently by NPCs than Diplomatic Hawke etc. so what was the point?) and (2) the super-intrusive voiced protagonist model made it so that if you incurred enough "Aggressive behavior" points, your Hawke began automatically talking like a complete douche to everyone, even his mother.... without the player being able to do anything about it. <Ugh>

 

It's safe to say we're not going to have these problems with PoE, for obvious reasons, but we still don't know how well it's going to work.

 

 

Anyway:

Pillars-of-Eternity-2-610x342.jpg

 

^Flight? That dragon is flying above the characters! This didn't happen in the IE games. I wonder if this means that the game will be supporting ground-to-air combat

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Bioware ? Hah what did you think to mention those utter failure of people. One thing they are good at is promising things and then fail at delivering them (Mass Effect 3).

 

I'm keeping my distance from the new Dragon Age as well, will do exquisite research LOT AFTER is released before I am to buy it and of course, I'm not keeping my hopes up.

 

 

 

 

^Flight? That dragon is flying above the characters! This didn't happen in the IE games. I wonder if this means that the game will be supporting ground-to-air combat

 

 

Remember that Wyverns in Baldur's Gate were also flying. Don't except air-born combat, it is presumed your characters hit those creatures in the legs, tail or lower torso.


Matilda is a Natlan woman born and raised in Old Vailia. She managed to earn status as a mercenary for being a professional who gets the job done, more so when the job involves putting her excellent fighting abilities to good use.

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Hmmmm, while my first playthrough will be as a Paladin, sassy jackass/**** Cipher sounds tempting.


"Take your child murderin' god and shove his him up his own ass."-Volorun

 

"...the vote of a black redhead disabled homosexual transsexual Jew should probably be worth the same as at least a hundred white heterosexual Christians."-Rostere

 

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Remember that Wyverns in Baldur's Gate were also flying. Don't except air-born combat, it is presumed your characters hit those creatures in the legs, tail or lower torso.

Yeah, that's the illusion of flight. Dragons and celestials in BG2 did the same thing. They'd flap their wings and the animations would make them appear as though they were "flying". They weren't though. Because melee characters could still easily hit them with their daggers and short swords.

 

True Flight, and true ground-to-air combat, is like what we got in Skyrim. In Skyrim, when a dragon is flying...it's FLYING. It is out of melee reach. A dragon in flight can only be hit by ranged attacks. <----I would LOVE to see these types of mechanics in PoE

Edited by Stun
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Well I'd be pleasantly surprised if there is a true flight mechanism  :brows:

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Matilda is a Natlan woman born and raised in Old Vailia. She managed to earn status as a mercenary for being a professional who gets the job done, more so when the job involves putting her excellent fighting abilities to good use.

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<3

 

Every time Josh talks, it's like he's describing more and more of one of my ideal RPGs.

 

One thing I seized on in this interview in particular is the idea of reducing "slipperiness." Which I totally support. One of my biggest complaints with all of the IE games is that there are no ways of defending squishy party members from martial attack consistently. There are ways around it, especially if you have a caster with you or you're good at exploiting the AI's threat detection, but because attacks of opportunity and combat maneuvers and such aren't built into the system, it too often turns Epic Fantasy Combat into a dull game of keep-away.

 

And yes, I'm aware of the guard button, but I've been playing the BG games almost every day for the past three months or so, and I've never seen a single situation where it mattered even a little bit.

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If actual flight mechanics are put in the game, a ranged weapon in the weapon swap palette will be necessary.

 

As long the air battles don't devolve into "The monster flies 50 -100ft into the air, beyond the range of your thrown weapon" at this point I start complaining as to why I bother ever picking a weapon other then a Composite Longbow. Pen and Paper woes my friends, at least after 6th level. Seems to be when all the "it's invisible" and "flying" come up. You haven't experienced flying in an rpg until epic level. Got everyone flying around, have to find distances between two different elevated targets. The best thing about video games is not doing the number crunching yourself.

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Yeah, there are other problems that arise from flight implemented combat. Spell complexity for example. AOE spells in the IE games, like fireball and stinking cloud have a basic 2d radius. 20'x 20' or some such. But if a game is going to have a spell like fireball, and flight mechanics, then those spells are going to have to have a cube-like 3d area of effect. If you cast a Cloudkill at a creature that's hovering 20 feet in the air, will it completely miss the people who are on the ground right under it?

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I want my pre-combat buffs. Nothing compares to buffing your characters for 60 seconds before a difficult boss fight. Hearing all those chants your characters chant. It's especially glorious with 4 spellcasters.

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I personally think prebuffing was abysmal so I am glad to see it go. Thats the biggest reason I hated picking a cleric.

 

When playing without reloading it isnt so bad, but still not very pleasant.

Edited by Sheikh

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<3

 

Every time Josh talks, it's like he's describing more and more of one of my ideal RPGs.

 

One thing I seized on in this interview in particular is the idea of reducing "slipperiness." Which I totally support. One of my biggest complaints with all of the IE games is that there are no ways of defending squishy party members from martial attack consistently. There are ways around it, especially if you have a caster with you or you're good at exploiting the AI's threat detection, but because attacks of opportunity and combat maneuvers and such aren't built into the system, it too often turns Epic Fantasy Combat into a dull game of keep-away.

 

And yes, I'm aware of the guard button, but I've been playing the BG games almost every day for the past three months or so, and I've never seen a single situation where it mattered even a little bit.

You're still playing the game right? Maybe this will help.

One of the things i like to do when my character is being chased is create a wall with 2 melee characters, while letting the fleeing character pass through them.

The characters that create a wall need to be slightly apart so that they have a small gap between them, which makes them like a pocket around a monster when it tries to pass. The monster can't pass through the gab because it's too narrow and it can't move left or right because it's jammed between the 2 characters. It needs to move slightly backwards if it wants to go around and when it does it usually loses aggro.

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The pre-buffing response was slightly calming to me. It's good to hear the phrase "opportunity cost". It gives me some confidence that the protection spells will be worth-while, and therefore, that other spells will be as well.

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I'm particularly interested to see if they successfully pull off the dialogue-choice-based personality system as described in the article. Bioware tried to do it in Dragon Age 2, and they failed. But they failed because (1) There was no game world reputation system tracking (aggressive Hawke was not treated any differently by NPCs than Diplomatic Hawke etc. so what was the point?) and (2) the super-intrusive voiced protagonist model made it so that if you incurred enough "Aggressive behavior" points, your Hawke began automatically talking like a complete douche to everyone, even his mother.... without the player being able to do anything about it. <Ugh>

 

It's safe to say we're not going to have these problems with PoE, for obvious reasons, but we still don't know how well it's going to work.

As I understand it, the system avoids the Hawke problem by never disallowing or altering player dialogue on the basis of reputation. It instead alters the response to player dialogue based on previous dialogue choices. So if you're honest for half of the game, and then you have to tell a lie, it's more likely to be believed if you have a reputation for honesty.

 

It also tracks major shifts in reputation a la New Vegas. So (to be overly simplistic about it) if you play a third of the game always picking the benevolent option, and then you suddenly turn on a dime and pick the cruel options for the next third, people will think of you as that guy who used to be nice, but is now super mean. There's no undoing what you've done or said up to that point. It's not a sliding scale between benevolence and cruelty where you have to work off your benevolence debt in order to be viewed as cruel (or vice versa). You can't go to a church and pay some dough to be considered a good person again. People remember how you responded to stuff, in word and deed. They treat you like a guy who said and did what you said and did.

 

I'd seriously doubt they could pull it off if it were any other company, but they already did it to an extent in New Vegas and Alpha Protocol, and now that they're free of the game-hurting money pit that is full VO, I have every confidence they'll be able to pull it off.

 

I don't think it'll be perfect, of course. There's only a certain level of granularity they can plausibly reach with any given mechanic, especially at this budget. But I trust them to make it good.

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Not being able to take reasonable precautions if one has the drop on an opponent seems very...carefree, I have to wonder in what way we can take advantage of ambushing foes?


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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The pre-buffing response was slightly calming to me. It's good to hear the phrase "opportunity cost". It gives me some confidence that the protection spells will be worth-while, and therefore, that other spells will be as well.

 

Seconded. I've had a bit of concern over what was happening with some of the old IE combat tricks, but I do like the idea of making buffs an in-combat tactical choice.

 

In terms of shared experience to enable the prospect of solo'ing, I think that's fine, as long as attempts to enable this do not undo the balance of the game in the same way Icewind Dale II did (IWDII is harder with six party members than it is with four, even though at a glance at the design this would seem counter-intuitive). By all means make solo'ing possible, but keep it as the challenge that it should be.

 

The morality and reputation system sounds great, but I'm taking that with a truckload of salt.

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The morality and reputation system sounds great, but I'm taking that with a truckload of salt.

 

It doesn't seem like they would be able to handle a large number of reputation types, or the conversation trees would get too deep. Probably we'll get just a few that focus on major behavioral attributes (flashing back to the Parley menu in the old Gold Box Games).


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It doesn't seem like they would be able to handle a large number of reputation types, or the conversation trees would get too deep. Probably we'll get just a few that focus on major behavioral attributes (flashing back to the Parley menu in the old Gold Box Games).

 

It's not just that, it's also the whole "100% in one playthrough" syndrome. Even amongst the backers who love the IE games and others from the silver age of RPGs, being shut out of large sections of content on each playthrough without making any "wrong" decisions is likely to be unpopular.

 

In terms of risk/reward for the devs, the significance of reputation is unlikely to be more than a well-implemented cosmetic at best.

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It doesn't seem like they would be able to handle a large number of reputation types, or the conversation trees would get too deep. Probably we'll get just a few that focus on major behavioral attributes (flashing back to the Parley menu in the old Gold Box Games).

 

It's not just that, it's also the whole "100% in one playthrough" syndrome. Even amongst the backers who love the IE games and others from the silver age of RPGs, being shut out of large sections of content on each playthrough without making any "wrong" decisions is likely to be unpopular.

 

In terms of risk/reward for the devs, the significance of reputation is unlikely to be more than a well-implemented cosmetic at best.

 

 

 

I really hope both of you are proven wrong. I would like dialogue to be as interactive as 'Planescape: Torment', or maybe more than that.


Matilda is a Natlan woman born and raised in Old Vailia. She managed to earn status as a mercenary for being a professional who gets the job done, more so when the job involves putting her excellent fighting abilities to good use.

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What Planescape: Torment did and what Josh is describing are two completely different animals. PS:T didn't have a reputation system. There was no behavior tracking whatsoever except for maybe Alignment, and even that did not have any effect on dialogue choices.

 

Instead, PS:T's dialogue beauty came from the sheer volume of choices you got in just about every conversation, regardless of what you accomplished in the game world, and of course, the way your various stats (int. cha. wis. etc) affected your dialogue options.

 

We're going to get Both systems in PoE, but again, the question is: How well will they pull it off?

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 I really hope both of you are proven wrong. I would like dialogue to be as interactive as 'Planescape: Torment', or maybe more than that.

 

I think we're talking slightly at cross purposes here.

 

I'm not saying that the dialogue won't be as interactive as PS:T. I'm saying that even if it is, the reputation system is unlikely to hold much depth. PS:T had very in-depth dialogue trees but in terms of reputation (in terms of Lawful/Chaotic/Good/Evil and faction rep) didn't have a substantial influence beyond the cosmetic. Yes, doors opened and closed but these were very limited in their scope.

 

Even Fallout 2, which had probably the most extensive and flag-happy dialogue trees (and for some unfathomable reason gets glossed over when people are singing the praises of PS:T's dialogue), didn't have reputation affecting matters in the way that people like to dream about.

 

P:E can trump both, and still very easily fail in the implied claims (although to be fair, Josh puts in an implied disclaimer to boot).

Edited by Kjaamor

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