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Itemization feels bland


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Why can't you just admit that you were wrong?

 

Wrong about what exactly?

 

I know what you're trying to do, it's just that it's so easy to make you bang your head against some wall that I find it very amusing, so I wasn't stopping you.

I said that BG2 provided players with a variety of powerful weapons for everyone. It never was my goal to argue how balanced it was or if game was well protected against exploits, but you yourself proved that itemization was rich and items were very diverse, and end-tier weapons actually were all valid and good depending on situation.

Edited by Shadenuat
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Why can't you just admit that you were wrong?

 

Wrong about what exactly?

 

I know what you're trying to do, it's just that it's so easy to make you bang your head against some wall that I find it very amusing, so I wasn't stopping you.

I said that BG2 provided players with a variety of powerful weapons for everyone. It never was my goal to argue how balanced it was or if game was well protected against exploits, but you yourself proved that itemization was rich and items were very diverse, and end-tier weapons actually were all valid and good depending on situation.

 

 

Its NOT exploiting if I equip a staff and automaticaly win ANY mage boss fight, which means almost all bossfights. Its not exploiting if I equip another stuff and automaticaly win all bossfights I couldnt win with the first one. Its not exploiting if you equip a rope and a ring to be completly immune to magic, which is the only real thread in this game. Its complelty not balanced and beyond broken. Those items are "I win buttons" use them and you can uninstall the game because you already won it anyway. 

 

No you explicitly told me that such things dont exist in baldurs gate. Go reread what you typed, its a good thing that a forum does not forget a thing. The only thing you do now is trying to sneak out of the argument because you cant admit that you were wrong.

 

 

 

No i meant that it had item / class combinations that allowed you to walk through the game complelty immortal.

 

 

 

No it didn't.

 

You're not going anywhere with this, you know.

 
Those items make you immortal, its game breaking. This is really childish.
Edited by Mayama
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Watching these arguments, you begin to understand where Sawyers "No hardcounter - items" - credo actually originates from. ;)

Hard counters were half the fun. Now you get your Mirror Image that just improves your Deflection by 20 (while Arcane Veil improves it by 25, the first level double spell by 10 or 15, the 3d level spell by 25, ecetera), enjoy your next generation of design.

But hard counters is one hot topic.

Edited by Shadenuat
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Thanks for starting this topic. 

 

A few random thoughts:

 

- The one item that I remember from the beta is the stag helm because it looks interesting - but - I think you can enchant BB Fighter's helmet to give the same benefits if you want? Flexibility is nice, but it does make things kind of bland.

 

- I used the enchantment mechanic to make a Hide Armor of Might + 1. The good part is that the enchanted armor is the result of an adventure you had. I guess the bad part is that it has more of a scavenger hunt vibe than a reward for an adventure because you need to find three items (and notice that you found them - which you currently do by clicking on every stinking recipe, that part needs some more UI in any case). 

 

- Also regarding the aforementioned hide armor - in BG1 finding the stat tomes was a giant deal - in PoE you can enchant an item to increase any stat you want once you stumble upon all of the items and have enough money. It's nice to be able to increase stats - but, yeah it does seem a bit bland. You get enough blood from the Ogre to enchant two items. We don't know yet how many Ogres there are in the game.

 

- In the stormwall gorge dungeon - if you kill the vithrak, you can enchant the spear that you find (if you aren't soling the game -you need two companions to activate the urn) - but, whatever, you can enchant it anyway once you have some spare coin and the right items.

 

Finally, my questions to you, the reader (should you wish to answer them) to keep this great discussion going:

 

1. Does the enchantment system doom very item to blandness? (The 'every item is a beautiful unique snowflake' problem.) 

 

2. If so, what would fix it? More interesting items - that is, items that have attributes not available in the enchantment system (which can be enchanted more with the existing system)? Nerf the enchantment mechanic so unique items are more powerful? Other?

 

3. Is three items plus money the way to go for enchantments? Would it be better to find a unique item that could be used to enchant whatever you want (the stone of celestial fury, the mushroom of ages, the discarded sixpack ring of Carsomyrness)?

 

4. What else would make items more interesting?

 

 

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4. What else would make items more interesting?

 

In the long run I guess theirs no difference between finding swords +1 or +2 everywhere in BG and crafting "low stat" magic items yourself. For everything else I would prefer unique items. I think you dont need to make them really powerfull but give them some intersting modifiers and history of course. It would be also nice to have role playing magic items, like things that only help in NPC interaction like giving you the high INT responses even if you dont have enough INT.

 

Its a money dump. Which means you could accidently waste all your money on it. Thats actually kinda interesting, they dont want us to grind for stuff which means that we most likley dont need any money to win the game. ^^

Edited by Mayama
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I don't mind the crafting / enchanting system at all. How do all these uber items in the IE games come into existence anyway? Oh, that's right, they were crafted / enchanted whatever by some legendary figure etc. My late-game party is the most powerful the world has seen and yet we never left behind a single legendary artifact? This is just giving the player the ability to be a part of that lore and history instead of simply watching from the sidelines. 

 

It would be really cool if some of those legendary items you crafted could be added to the loot table in a subsequent playthrough, but I digress.

 

Personally, I would balance it by making the ingredients needed for truly uber buffs to be very rare, perhaps only enough to create 5-6 'legendary' items per game. This encourages the use of pre-made story items to be used in tandem with player made ones, so that no one way is all-powerful, and increases replay value.

 

I also like the random aspect player created items brings to the game. Players will have unique stories to tell based on their itemization choices instead of "oh yeah, I picked up Flail of Ages, like I always do, and then facerolled the whole game."

Edited by Qiushui
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... I far prefer this to the IE system where people metagamed item drops (get a paladin for the holy avenger, make sure you have someone to use the crom faeyr, Mazzy is only good if you get a str belt for her - so get that first, Keldorn needs dex gloves or he sucks, etc etc) ....

 

 

  A fair point, but the current system doesn't prevent metagaming. It's actually worse.

 

 Once you realize that the Ogre blood lets you (up to) Might+3 enchant your armor you can a make a beeline to murder the Ogre. The quest has at least three endings that I know of and the one that lets you enchant you armor is that one involves killing him. If you know that the PoE equivalent of Keldorn needs +3 might to be useful, well, it sucks to be the Ogre.

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Go look up some Josh Sawyer quotes on enchantments. I am fairly positive he said that every item bonus can be added through enchantments and none of them are truly unique.

 

Is this true? If so, major derp.

Bigger derp is to rely on someone's admittedly unclear hearsay.

 

If anyone bothered to take 5 seconds to do a search you'll see that Josh never said anything like that. He simply said that unique items are enchantable like anything else. 

 

-"You can add enchantments to unique items that you find."

 

-"Additionally, our crafting/enchantment system does allow you to modify weapons -- even unique ones.  So if you have a specific group of bonuses you'd really like to have, you will probably be able to make that happen."

Edited by Bazy
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... I far prefer this to the IE system where people metagamed item drops (get a paladin for the holy avenger, make sure you have someone to use the crom faeyr, Mazzy is only good if you get a str belt for her - so get that first, Keldorn needs dex gloves or he sucks, etc etc) ....

 

 

  A fair point, but the current system doesn't prevent metagaming. It's actually worse.

 

 Once you realize that the Ogre blood lets you (up to) Might+3 enchant your armor you can a make a beeline to murder the Ogre. The quest has at least three endings that I know of and the one that lets you enchant you armor is that one involves killing him. If you know that the PoE equivalent of Keldorn needs +3 might to be useful, well, it sucks to be the Ogre.

 

 

Actually +3 might does not have big effect...you are free to let Ogre live. It called balanced rewards for different quest paths.

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Go look up some Josh Sawyer quotes on enchantments. I am fairly positive he said that every item bonus can be added through enchantments and none of them are truly unique.

 

Is this true? If so, major derp.

Bigger derp is to rely on someone's admittedly unclear hearsay.

 

If anyone bothered to take 5 seconds to do a search you'll see that Josh never said anything like that. He simply said that unique items are enchantable like anything else. 

 

-"You can add enchantments to unique items that you find."

 

-"Additionally, our crafting/enchantment system does allow you to modify weapons -- even unique ones.  So if you have a specific group of bonuses you'd really like to have, you will probably be able to make that happen."

 

You completely miss the point. What we discuss is that the "Unigue" items, to unique in something other than name they need to have enchatmends and abilities beyond the scope of the crafting system, that the player can't add to other items.

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Unique enchantments could be very bad for gameplay. They are hard to balance. I am not even afraid to say it would potentially make some builds excellent. And when we have excellent build there is bad build. Bad build is against one of the PoE design principles. Don't even think about enchantments and unique in one sentence...

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... I far prefer this to the IE system where people metagamed item drops (get a paladin for the holy avenger, make sure you have someone to use the crom faeyr, Mazzy is only good if you get a str belt for her - so get that first, Keldorn needs dex gloves or he sucks, etc etc) ....

 

 

  A fair point, but the current system doesn't prevent metagaming. It's actually worse.

 

 Once you realize that the Ogre blood lets you (up to) Might+3 enchant your armor you can a make a beeline to murder the Ogre. The quest has at least three endings that I know of and the one that lets you enchant you armor is that one involves killing him. If you know that the PoE equivalent of Keldorn needs +3 might to be useful, well, it sucks to be the Ogre.

 

 

Actually +3 might does not have big effect...you are free to let Ogre live. It called balanced rewards for different quest paths.

 

 

 You're right, but I have a feeling that we'll see the stats 'turned up' in the final game - we'll see.

 

 If not, doesn't that mean that the enchantment system will not be very interesting? 

 

Are the devs sitting in a smoke filled room saying:

 

"Hah, I anticipated your metagaming proclivities and have headed them off in advance by making all options completely pointless - checkmate!"

 

I don't think so.

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Unique enchantments could be very bad for gameplay. They are hard to balance. I am not even afraid to say it would potentially make some builds excellent. And when we have excellent build there is bad build. Bad build is against one of the PoE design principles. Don't even think about enchantments and unique in one sentence...

 

 Maybe, but do you feel that the items in the game are especially interesting now?

 

 Is the prospect of adding (non-unique) enchantments to the items exciting right now? (I'm guessing not since you just told me not to worry about metagaming because the best Might enchantment you can make to armor doesn't really make much difference.)

 

"Balance" can't end up meaning that all options are colorless and uninteresting or the game will be colorless and uninteresting.

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Even if "no unique enchantments" stays till release, Obsidian can still make it so that Uniques have higher numbers on their enchantments than you could ever hope yo reach with crafting, thus making them still enjoyable.

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Its NOT exploiting if I equip a staff and automaticaly win ANY mage boss fight, which means almost all bossfights.

Hyperbole, thy name is Mayama.

 

 

Celestial fury: Katana that stuns if you fail a save, combine it with a spell that lowers save throws and you can stun lock almost any boss in the game

Celestial fury is edged. It's +3. It's magical. Its major affliction is a mind effecting property, And it's a katana.

 

That's 5 strikes against it. It's useless against Clay golems, Enemies requiring +4 or better weapon to hit (read: Kangaxx, Demogorgon, Mellisan, Mantled mages) You can't hit any mage with it until you first dispel their Protection from magical weapons buff. Many enemies are immune to stun in BG2, and if you want to be effective with it even against trash mobs, you're going to need to spend proficiency points in Katana, which is a moronic thing to do since there are no other good Katanas in the game.

 

That's called balance. And we can apply that to every weapon you cited, as well as every magic item in BG2 that you forgot to cite.

Edited by Stun
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Even if "no unique enchantments" stays till release, Obsidian can still make it so that Uniques have higher numbers on their enchantments than you could ever hope yo reach with crafting, thus making them still enjoyable.

This new Sword I found gives me +20 to accuracy. That's twice as good as the +10 accuracy enchantment I had!

 

That sure is exciting

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Its NOT exploiting if I equip a staff and automaticaly win ANY mage boss fight, which means almost all bossfights.

Hyperbole, thy name is Mayama.

 

 

Celestial fury: Katana that stuns if you fail a save, combine it with a spell that lowers save throws and you can stun lock almost any boss in the game

Celestial fury is edged. It's +3. It's magical. Its major affliction is a mind effecting property, And it's a katana.

 

That's 5 strikes against it. It's useless against Clay golems, Enemies requiring +4 or better weapon to hit (read: Kangaxx, Demogorgon, Mellisan, Mantled mages) You can't hit any mage with it until you first dispel their Protection from magical weapons buff. Many enemies are immune to stun in BG2, and if you want to be effective with it even against trash mobs, you're going to need to spend proficiency points in Katana, which is a moronic thing to do since there are no other good Katanas in the game.

 

That's called balance. And we can apply that to every weapon you cited, as well as every magic item in BG2 that you forgot to cite.

 

 

So just equiping a item in the game and using it is exploiting for you? Seriously, if you can use an item in the INTENDED way or just play a class in the intended way like wild mages or kensai+x multiclass and it trivialize the whole game its not exploiting its just completly broken balance. Same with the katana, its not balance if the power gain is so immense compared to the effort you put into it.

 

It just baffles me that people call items, spells or classes that trivialize any encounter balanced.

Edited by Mayama
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So just equiping a item in the game and using it is exploiting for you?

What?

 

I don't recall discussing the issue of exploitation at all. Only your silly claim that the staff of the magi = automatic win against Mage bosses. (in fact, it's suicide in many mage battles, since relegating your mage to melee when he could be using his spells instead is a MORONIC strategy to use against mages in BG2)

Edited by Stun
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So just equiping a item in the game and using it is exploiting for you?

What?

 

I don't recall discussing the issue of exploitation at all. Only your silly claim that the staff of the magi = automatic win against Mage bosses. (in fact, it's suicide in many mage battles, since relegating your mage to melee when he could be using his spells instead is a MORONIC strategy to use against mages in BG2)

 

You dont need to give it a real mage, multiclassing is the key here. You could get one mage level or you could multiclass with thief to get the "use every item in the game" ability. 

Edited by Mayama
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It just baffles me that people call items, spells or classes that trivialize any encounter balanced.

Gonna devote this to it's own post because it breaches the ceiling of sanity and rises to the stratosphere of crazy-speak.

 

None of the items you listed trivialize combat in BG2 in the slightest. Lets go down your list.

 

The Staff of the Magi - usable only by the one class designed to suck monkeyballs in melee. -And- it specifically endowed with properties that will only be useful against other spell casters. Thus if you send your mage ahead to whack away at a vampire or a golem, or a fire giant, or a dragon, or a mind flayer, or a beholder, the ensuing battle will hardly be "trivial"...except maybe for the enemy. Mages should be casting spells instead. The caveat to this is that Thieves get UAI very late in the game and thus they can also use the Staff of the Magi. Of course, the game won't let you backstab with it, so its invisibility property is useless. And anyone dumb enough to equip their thief that late in the game with a 2-handed weapon that 1) a mage should be using, and 2) can't be used for backstabbing, Is an Idiot and his opinions on triviality are rendered irrelevant because of that alone. But mostly, the Staff of the Magi is really nice to have, and it's one of the 4 or 5 most powerful weapons in SoA. But it doesn't make anything trivial.

 

 

Cloak of Mirroring--just like the Staff of the Magi in that it is designed to ONLY be effective against enemy spell casters. it will not help you against a dragon. It will not help you against golems or vampires, or mindflayers, or shadowfiends, or anyone who tries to take your head off in melee. And even against spell casters, it won't protect you against the nastier stuff. The claim that it trivializes combat is most definitely NOT true. Even if we assume that BG2 isn't a party based game and only 1 person in your party can wear the cloak of mirroring.

 

Staff of the Ram -- not sure why this is even here. You only get it in Throne of Bhaal...when it is far too late to be discussing trivial combat (as if your sorcerer's 6 copies of Summon Planetar, and your thief's 15 spike traps are somehow overshadowed by a LOUSY quarterstaff that can knock people back 10% of the time) But lets talk some more about that knock-back ability. Why do you find it powerful? It's the opposite of powerful. it's annoying and it HINDERS combat effectiveness.

 

Celestial Fury -already talked about this. But if you wish to gimp your character by taking points in katana just so you can reap its limited benefits (I'll take the Flail of the Ages over it any day), your loss. It's not even a powergamer's weapon. and it most certainly doesn't make ANYTHING trivial.

 

You can argue that these weapons are imbalanced, and I won't totally disagree, but...you didn't. You had to get carried away with the BG2 bashing and take it 20 notches further to claim that they rendered combat trivial. which is false.

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You dont need to give it a real mage, multiclassing is the key here. You could get one mage level or you could multiclass with thief to get the "use every item in the game" ability.

Then bash Multi-classing, because THAT'S your culprit here, not the mage-weapon itself. Besides, if you're multi-classing then you've willingly gimped your mage progression in favor of being a better in Melee. That's also a balance in the system...or tradeoff, if you wish to use a more technical term.

 

But you haven't trivialized combat with the staff of the magi, you've just changed things up a bit. There are better weapons for a mage multi-class.... and better weapon styles (dual wielding 2 powerful weapons then casting improved haste, is a far more useful in Bg2)

Edited by Stun
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You can argue that these weapons are imbalanced, and I won't totally disagree, but...you didn't. You had to get carried away with the BG2 bashing and take it 20 notches further to claim that they rendered combat trivial. which is false.

 

 

 

You know you can use the robe and staff on everything that can multiclass, ever played something like a kensai/mage? All those options are insane power gamer options.

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You dont need to give it a real mage, multiclassing is the key here. You could get one mage level or you could multiclass with thief to get the "use every item in the game" ability.

Then bash Multi-classing, because THAT'S your culprit here, not the mage-weapon itself. Besides, if you're multi-classing then you've willingly gimped your mage progression in favor of being a better in Melee. That's also a balance in the system...or tradeoff, if you wish to use a more technical term.

 

But you haven't trivialized combat.

 

Its not a real tradeoff because that would mean that risk/reward is kinda balanced which is not. Its not some obscure exploit its common knowledge, everyone that played AD&D knew that multiclassing will rule such a high level campaign. The devs knew it, do you think they implemented "class X only" items without knowing that in the end everyone could use them? Its basicaly the first thing you do when you find those powerfull items, getting behind the restriction because the game gives you the tools to do so and encourages it. We could do a endless discussion about balance, itemization etc. here but baldurs gate2 was not balanced. I mean we are talking about basic stuff here not people doing solo runs with completly OP builds.

Edited by Mayama
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