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Experience point system in the beta and onwards


Your thoughts on the xp system in the beta  

217 members have voted

  1. 1. What kind of xp system to do you want to see after having played the beta?

    • Quest xp only
      30
    • Quest xp and objectives that are large in scope
      52
    • Objective xp that are per dungeon or per map (minus bosses), including exploration and quest xp
      78
    • Objective xp per encounter (including "trash mobs"), per picked lock, per sneak, etc., plus quest xp
      53
    • Kill xp plus quest xp
      76


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Although, I said I was waiting for the beta to continue this debate I am lucky to get a single quest finished before the quest log flips out on me because of one reason or another. I don't feel I can make an informed decision until I can play it how it was intended. I am still in support of objective xp, but I would like a fairly unbiased play of the system before falling on one side or the other. So, I am holding out on voting while neither condoning or condemning the present system. The present bug situation makes it easy to hate the system, and that is unfair to Josh IMHO. I want to see it working.

 

I cannot form a valid opinion until the Quest bug is fixed.

 

Man, I sound like a broken record.

 

Agreed.. Although those opinions may remain in contrast to mine.. it's not fair to say the system isn't working because of bugs.. Bugs will be fixed.. this is a debate / discussion on mechanics.

 

Although I am noticing a lot more traffic from high level backers who maybe assumed kill-xp was on the menu and don't seem to happy about it not being..

 

I know a lame ass forum poll shouldn't dictate the direction of a game.. but people had an expectation when kickstarting and for Josh to say "shut up and don't buy it".. well I mean too late.. At least have some open dialogue about it..

From George Ziets @ http://new.spring.me/#!/user/GZiets/timeline/responses

Didn’t like the fact that I don’t get XP for combat. While this does put more emphasis on solving quests, the lack of rewards for killing creatures makes me want to avoid combat (the core activity of the game) as much as I can.

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I was profoundly disappointment when I realized I wasn't being rewarded with experience for gameplay. It doesn't make sense to me that the system responsible for managing the party's increasing skill doesn't recognize the time and effort they put into overcoming their enemies through battle, the continued practice of their non violent skills, or the ongoing gathering of knowledge through reading, observation and exploration.  It is a letdown from what you are expecting, based both on life and on other comparable RPGs.

 

Not only is it disheartening when you realize that you're being rewarded much less than you would be in real life  for doing these things, but it removes systemic feedback that is essential for creating your own narrative. Sparing an NPC's life is much more meaningful when you're giving up something tangible. Getting experience for backstabbing a naive rogue after completing his assignment gives a gameplay driven incentive suggesting that you are (for instance) in fact being smart, if unscrupulous. Levelling up upon reading a book reinforces the image of your character as a learning person.

 

That it is instead exclusively tied directly to the completion of a selection of the narrative goals adds insult to injury. It gives me the impression that I'm being led by the nose by a writer who has no confidence that their story is engaging enough in itself, that the player would want to experience it if there was no non-conversational gameplay.

 

Differing experience gains through diffrent types of play seems to me entirely unproblematic, as long as no path leaves the characters too weak to comfortably progress. Taking the high road already has the advantage of being in people's moral comfort zone, it doesn't need as high incentive for people to consider it. When playing I often find myself passing up both treasure and experience for the option to resolve things amicably. Not to mention the fact that disregarding the wellbeing of others when trying to further yourself improves your odds at succeeding, so if by committing opportunistic acts you get ahead that is only authentic.

 

To the people who insist that rewarding every little accomplishment will lead to players feeling obligated to grind to not feel like they're missing out, falling behind, or squandering opportunities: This is a single player game, you're not competing against anyone but the  enemies the game throws at you. If you don't have the patience to do every little thing that's fine: Just stop when you're no longer enjoying yourself, and move onto a part of the game you do find engaging. There is no loss in that.

 

I have confidence that Obsidian would be able to fix this experience system if they wanted to. They already have an estimate of the rate characters should gain experience for every major plot point: The work is in distributing that experience sensibly throughout each section. If they have notes on how tough diffrent enemies are relative to eachother, then they can use that in conjunction with the number of mobs the characters are expected to slay to work out how much experience each creature should give. Then scale it back by however much of the experience you want to come from other activities, reserve the majority of that for quest resolutions, and divide the rest evenly among the non combat pasttimes. Then playtest and refine as needed.

 

But what do I know, I'm not a game designer.  In any case, those are my thoughts, for whatever they're worth.

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"we just need to see if Josh can swallow his pride a bit.."

 

 Problem is he won't do that. I mean he's already labeeld those who disagree with him 'grognards' even thoguh he actually fits the description.

 

He's simply wrong with how they're going about xp. Even his own boss disagreed with him but relented to Sawyer's 'vision'.

What we are playing is Josh Sawyer's vision of the best RPG ever (minus the bugs and required tweaking of course).

 

Sawyer would never swallow his pride, so I don't think anything will change no matter how much we bitch about it.

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Pillars of Eternity Josh Sawyer's Quest: The Quest for Quests - an isometric fantasy stealth RPG with optional combat and no pesky XP rewards for combat, skill usage or exploration.


PoE is supposed to be a spiritual successor to Baldur's GateJosh Sawyer doesn't like the Baldur's Gate series (more) - PoE is supposed to reward us for our achievements


~~~~~~~~~~~


"Josh Sawyer created an RPG where always avoiding combat and never picking locks makes you a powerful warrior and a master lockpicker." -Helm, very critcal and super awesome RPG fan


"I like XP for things other than just objectives. When there is no rewards for combat or other activities, I think it lessens the reward for being successful at them." -Feargus Urquhart, OE CEO


"Didn’t like the fact that I don’t get XP for combat [...] the lack of rewards for killing creatures [in PoE] makes me want to avoid combat (the core activity of the game)" -George Ziets, Game Dev.

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I know a lame ass forum poll shouldn't dictate the direction of a game.. but people had an expectation when kickstarting and for Josh to say "shut up and don't buy it".. well I mean too late.. At least have some open dialogue about it..

This poll is multiple choice so it isn't very accurate anyway.

 

But we had polls exactly like this over a year ago, and quest/objective xp + kill xp (like in the IE games) won of course. Did anything change? Nope. Were we ignored? Yup.

Pillars of Eternity Josh Sawyer's Quest: The Quest for Quests - an isometric fantasy stealth RPG with optional combat and no pesky XP rewards for combat, skill usage or exploration.


PoE is supposed to be a spiritual successor to Baldur's GateJosh Sawyer doesn't like the Baldur's Gate series (more) - PoE is supposed to reward us for our achievements


~~~~~~~~~~~


"Josh Sawyer created an RPG where always avoiding combat and never picking locks makes you a powerful warrior and a master lockpicker." -Helm, very critcal and super awesome RPG fan


"I like XP for things other than just objectives. When there is no rewards for combat or other activities, I think it lessens the reward for being successful at them." -Feargus Urquhart, OE CEO


"Didn’t like the fact that I don’t get XP for combat [...] the lack of rewards for killing creatures [in PoE] makes me want to avoid combat (the core activity of the game)" -George Ziets, Game Dev.

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I know a lame ass forum poll shouldn't dictate the direction of a game.. but people had an expectation when kickstarting and for Josh to say "shut up and don't buy it".. well I mean too late.. At least have some open dialogue about it..

This poll is multiple choice so it isn't very accurate anyway.

 

But we had polls exactly like this over a year ago, and quest/objective xp + kill xp (like in the IE games) won of course. Did anything change? Nope. Were we ignored? Yup.

 

 

The poll isn't gonna change anything on it's own.. Josh doesn't give a **** about what the majority of people want.. We aren't a publisher. I just want him to open up dialogue with us.. The poll just says.. Hey guys the direction your going is pissing off a lot of your backers.. and you can't hide behind the "well we played it and you haven't so nanana boo boo"

 

Bugs withstanding.. we've played it now.. nothing has changed.. beetles and lions are still not dropping jaws over here..

Edited by Immortalis

From George Ziets @ http://new.spring.me/#!/user/GZiets/timeline/responses

Didn’t like the fact that I don’t get XP for combat. While this does put more emphasis on solving quests, the lack of rewards for killing creatures makes me want to avoid combat (the core activity of the game) as much as I can.

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I personally don't care for "single kill XP", but I can see why some people might find it necessary; still, an open, story-driven RPG probably should give equal chances to each play style to level up, no matter the path the player chooses.

I don't see how this is such a big issue anyway, if the game is balanced, it's balanced, it doesn't really matter where the XP comes from.

 

Unless, of course, killing re-spawnable enemies is just a quick way to level up and "break the game", as it were, but I guess that would be pretty self explanatory, right? A player that has no interest in story, roleplay, atmosphere and immersion will simply waste hours repeating the menial job of killing rats, wolves, and ogres.

 

My point is, this group of people are NOT the target of "Pillars of Eternity", and their opinion is, I'm afraid, irrelevant.

Edited by svartelric
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My point is, this group of people are NOT the target of "Pillars of Eternity", and their opinion is, I'm afraid, irrelevant.

Good to know that the fans of Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, etc. are not the target group of this game.

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Pillars of Eternity Josh Sawyer's Quest: The Quest for Quests - an isometric fantasy stealth RPG with optional combat and no pesky XP rewards for combat, skill usage or exploration.


PoE is supposed to be a spiritual successor to Baldur's GateJosh Sawyer doesn't like the Baldur's Gate series (more) - PoE is supposed to reward us for our achievements


~~~~~~~~~~~


"Josh Sawyer created an RPG where always avoiding combat and never picking locks makes you a powerful warrior and a master lockpicker." -Helm, very critcal and super awesome RPG fan


"I like XP for things other than just objectives. When there is no rewards for combat or other activities, I think it lessens the reward for being successful at them." -Feargus Urquhart, OE CEO


"Didn’t like the fact that I don’t get XP for combat [...] the lack of rewards for killing creatures [in PoE] makes me want to avoid combat (the core activity of the game)" -George Ziets, Game Dev.

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I got my team up three levels in beta in four hours, so there is enough experience around, in my opinion. But I can see how you can feel that there isn't xp gain if they explore areas without doing quests/tasks, especially journal bug causing that you can miss xp.

 

Although I found exploring areas to be quite rewarding in itself, as there was quite lot loot to find and different ways to complete quests. 

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"Good to know that the fans of Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, etc. are not the target group of this game."

 

I'm a fan of IE games and I don't feel the need to hunt down every last xfart for 7xp. But, I also don't believe games should be made to  smack those type of players down. Theyc ertainly don't hurt me.

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DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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My point is, this group of people are NOT the target of "Pillars of Eternity", and their opinion is, I'm afraid, irrelevant.

Good to know that the fans of Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, etc. are not the target group of this game.

 

 

Ah, no true Scotsman.

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"You're a fool if you believe I would trust your benevolence. Step aside and you and your lackeys will be unhurt."


 


 


Baldur's Gate portraits for Pillars of Eternity   IXI   Icewind Dale portraits for Pillars of Eternity   IXI   Icewind Dale 2 portraits for Pillars of Eternity


 


[slap Aloth]

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"we just need to see if Josh can swallow his pride a bit.."

 

 Problem is he won't do that. I mean he's already labeeld those who disagree with him 'grognards' even thoguh he actually fits the description.

 

He's simply wrong with how they're going about xp. Even his own boss disagreed with him but relented to Sawyer's 'vision'.

 

No combat xp worked in SRR. It doesnt' work here.

 

To be more positive so I'm not 'picking on Sawyer'; there are stuff he has done well for the game and kudos to that thoguh it's wrong thread for those kudos.

 

 

 Bottom line is player should be rewarded for overcoming challenges. So far, in PE Beta, the player is not. That's a fail. Even the anti xp people are slowly seeing this.

 

Volourn was right again. Don't pull a Troika or a POR;ROMD , Obsidian. :)

And while I don't think we'll see Enemy EXP in PoE 1 (it seems like one of those things that would need to have been implemented on day one), we possibly could see it in PoE 2 if people start lopping off heads.

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But, it's not 'too buggy' for people to praise the game, right?  L0L

 

"You can't criticize because you haven't seen it."

 

"You can't criticize because you haven't played it."

 

"You can't criticize because it's just the beta."

 

"You can't criticize because it was just released."

 

"You can't criticize because you haven't played it 7 times."

 

"You can't criticize because it's not the sequel."

 

 

But, we sure as heck can praise it. Not one person has attacked me when I said good things about the character system... but, woe to me when I criticize something. :p

Edited by Volourn
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DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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But, it's not 'too buggy' for people to praise the game, right?

 

 

I don't think anyone's praising the buggy parts...

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"You're a fool if you believe I would trust your benevolence. Step aside and you and your lackeys will be unhurt."


 


 


Baldur's Gate portraits for Pillars of Eternity   IXI   Icewind Dale portraits for Pillars of Eternity   IXI   Icewind Dale 2 portraits for Pillars of Eternity


 


[slap Aloth]

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yeah, but people are saying 'best game ever', etc., etc. That's from a beta. If you can praise the beta you should be able t criticize it. And, I'm not talking about bugs since bugs are  to be expected and if a bug exists it exists. That's not controversial for obvious reasons. the assumption, of coruse, is that at the very elast the major bugs like items disseapearing will be fix by release time. But, features like the discussion in this thread are things that can be praised/criticzed now.

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DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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I don't think we need to wait for the game to come out for us to have an opinion on this. It is pretty self-evident that a lack of combat xp or objective xp in favor of quest xp which is what we have actually gotten favors quest railroading.

 

In a game about exploring; exploring should be rewarded. It shouldn't need a quest to back it up. Object xp would have been fine because things like finding a dungeon or killing that giant spider would yield xp presumably, but instead objective xp was code for quest xp. It is beyond disappointing; it is a serious threat to poe's ability to feel like an IE game.

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"Good thing I don't heal my characters or they'd be really hurt." Is not something I should ever be thinking.

 

I use blue text when I'm being sarcastic.

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Interesting, after almost 80 votes, we see the following:

-Almost half of all the votes (47%) point to xp in small increments - per encounter, per obstacle, etc - and nearly one third (30%) indicate kill-XP outright

-Another third of the votes points to xp in big increments that follow quest-lines and other long missions/tasks

-Merely one tenth of the votes reflects the system which seems to be implemented in this beta build

 

I for one hope for a change in the direction of much smaller increments, fit for a combat-heavy, party-based and IE-inspired games.

 

 


Of course the way you resolve your quests influences the outcome, I'm not expecting a situation where a quest can be resolved in X different manners each yielding exactly the same amount of XP. Part of the fun of replaying a RPG is seeing different parties progressing in different directions using different tactics and strategies.
 

^This can't be emphasized enough. Replayability and roleplaying aspects like exploration, party composition, etc, would suffer heavily, which would be a shame, since Josh & CO really have made some distinct classes, races, weapons, skills, talents, etc, to play around with.

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

 

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Of course the way you resolve your quests influences the outcome, I'm not expecting a situation where a quest can be resolved in X different manners each yielding exactly the same amount of XP. Part of the fun of replaying a RPG is seeing different parties progressing in different directions using different tactics and strategies.

 

 

^This can't be emphasized enough. Replayability and roleplaying aspects like exploration, party composition, etc, would suffer heavily, which would be a shame, since Josh & CO really have made some distinct classes, races, weapons, skills, talents, etc, to play around with.

 

Meh, I disagree. Alpha Protocol and Fallout: New Vegas were full of little perks you could gather based on your playstyle. Different quest resolution yielding the same amount of xp, but giving different material rewards, reputation scores (=leading to different quests/situations opening up) and perks is differentation enough IMHO.

"Lulz is not the highest aspiration of art and mankind, no matter what the Encyclopedia Dramatica says."

 

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Well, the good news about the beta is that 1) it starts you off with camping supplies and 2) You're never far away from the village inn.

 

Here was my playstyle for the first wilderness map:

 

1)Fight an encounter.

2) Rush back to the tavern to rest.

3) go back and fight another encounter

4) Rush back to the inn to rest.

 

and then in that map's dungeon:

 

1)fight one encounter

2) set camp

3) fight another oncounter

4) set camp

 

If Josh thought he could eliminate or even reduce rest-spamming with his crap design ideas, he was horribly mistaken. I think rested more in this 3-map-beta than I did in 7 chapters of IWD1.

 

 

I find this odd. I've played 8 hours and I have rested only a few times. I play on hard. I usually rest when the party gets fatigued due to travelling. Then again, I never used rest-spamming in IWD, BG etc.

 

About XP: As stated earlier, the current state of the beta makes quest XP look bad. After a couple of patches we'll see how it plays out. However, I do miss kill XP at times. For the sake of immersion, it's weird if you tend to complete quests without resorting to combat but you are still able to level up your characters and increase their fighting prowess. :shrugz: 

 

 

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"Maybe your grandiose vocabulary is a pathetic compensation for an insufficiency in the nether regions of your anatomy."

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A quick "What if" before I head to work.  This is for proponents of kill xp. 

 

Let's use the Ogre as an example.  You kill say 5 -8 beetles, 2 spiders at the entrance to the cave, 3ish inside the cave, and the Ogre himself.  What if each kill generated xp, but that xp was subtracted from the quest xp.  So if the quest gives 3000 xp and 10 enemies you encounter gave 50xp per kill then upon finishing the quest you recieve 2500xp because the 500 is subtracted for the monsters. 

 

There would have to be systems in place to disallow double dipping and the like, and you would have to limit the number of trash mobs that generated xp on the way to the Ogre of course.  I dunno, I am sleepy, and just wanted to toss this idea around.  It would keep most options open for other non-combat playstyles, but may be a bit too complex to get off the ground at this point.

 

EDIT:  Forgot to say if you didn't finish the quest you still got 500xp.  Also, 50xp was shooting from the hip number.  More or less depending on how quickly Obsidian wants us gaining xp is needed for sure.

Edited by Ganrich
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Well, I have voted for "Quest xp only", but that's under assumption of more reactive quests, so to speak.

 

For example, in the "Cat and Mouse" quest (or whatever else it was called), I've killed both parties which made the quest fail, leaving me with no XP (or I haven't noticed that I got any at least). I have only used the dialogue options to attack (not attacking manually), so I felt pretty cheated that the game didin't recognize such quest resolution.

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Well, I have voted for "Quest xp only", but that's under assumption of more reactive quests, so to speak.

 

For example, in the "Cat and Mouse" quest (or whatever else it was called), I've killed both parties which made the quest fail, leaving me with no XP (or I haven't noticed that I got any at least). I have only used the dialogue options to attack (not attacking manually), so I felt pretty cheated that the game didin't recognize such quest resolution.

 

Did you check if you still had the quests/tasks in your journal? Did you use save/load before completing the task? It's possible that the quest and tasks were wiped out from the journal before you completed them, if you loaded the game after receiving the quest.


"Maybe your grandiose vocabulary is a pathetic compensation for an insufficiency in the nether regions of your anatomy."

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The only goal of this is to allow people to take a variety of approaches to challenges without seeing one as gigantically more beneficial than the rest. In that regard, challenges that only have one viable approach should still yield a reward. Which means if you find yourself stuck in a cave with shades and the only way out is to disincorporate their ectoplasm via stabbing, some XP to be gained would not be inappropriate.

 

 

Couldn't this just be done by QUEST: Escape the Caves? You'd get same reward, whether you kill all shades, run/sneak like a headless rogue or dialog them to let you pass.

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Well, I have voted for "Quest xp only", but that's under assumption of more reactive quests, so to speak.

 

For example, in the "Cat and Mouse" quest (or whatever else it was called), I've killed both parties which made the quest fail, leaving me with no XP (or I haven't noticed that I got any at least). I have only used the dialogue options to attack (not attacking manually), so I felt pretty cheated that the game didin't recognize such quest resolution.

 

Wtf? So you believe that you shouldn't get experience for your actions? What's the point? Kill npc's hasn't cost you anything?

Seriously no-xp per kill sounds like: "I don't want that leveling by kill NPCs difficults my job of developer."  Pretty lazy...

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