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"No Bad Builds" a failure in practice? pt 2


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Even though the "no bad builds" policy of making all attributes equally important for all classes sounded somewhat good on paper, I think its execution has proved a failure. There are still bad builds and dump stats, and even worse than before, it's the same stats for ALL classes now.

 

Every character I make has 18 strength(or more). No matter if it's a fighter, a cleric, or a wizard, it's got to have big muscles because big muscles just make everyone more effective at what they do.

 

Every character I make has minimum perception and resolve because these stats don't do anything.

 

Almost every character I make has maximum dexterity except for support characters.

 

Intellect does nothing for characters that don't use area effects, status effects, or DoTs.

 

Constitution does nothing for characters that don't fight up front.

 

With the old attribute systems that we are familiar with, each class had a cookie-cutter stat distribution. With PoE's system, EVERY CHARACTER has the same cookie-cutter stat distribution. I think that's a step backwards, not forwards.

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Utukka: More seriously, your specified old geezer is probably at least sufficiently strong to, say, carry a pack around and hike across the various maps, yeah?  The lower limit we're allowed isn't necessarily "average", just "not crippingly far below average".

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Utukka: More seriously, your specified old geezer is probably at least sufficiently strong to, say, carry a pack around and hike across the various maps, yeah?  The lower limit we're allowed isn't necessarily "average", just "not crippingly far below average".

Ya, I was just playing a bit of devils advocate since I can technically see the argument if there is a "work around" such as Tensers/polymorph etc within the game world to make up for such disadvantages. I also work at a Pharmacy....hence I see a ton of old people at various stages of life. Even young people who are incapable of certain functions...but I'll stop there. I'm more than ok with the idea of what I originally discussed, that 3 is the representation of base requirements to be capable of adventuring.

Edited by Utukka
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But mostly the problem I have is that there's no meaningful consequences for dumping a stat to 3. If you build a fighter with 3 Might, you shouldn't be receiving a 10% bonus to base damage (especially with a melee weapon). You should be receiving a significant penalty to damage. Your Greatsword should do less than its base.

This is the second time today that I've liked something Stun wrote (well, this part of it)... Something weird is definitely going on. :grin:

 

But yeah, this is something I absolutely agree with, and it's something I've been saying for some time. The problem is that attributes give bonuses/penalties in a very linear manner when the penalty for lowering a stat from the average range should be increasingly more severe the lower you go.

 

There's nothing really wrong with min-maxing and it should remain possible, but it should carry a price. Dumping a stat should mean that you're handicapping your character in some aspect (beyond just "oh dear, my accuracy is slightly below average") and you need to make significant adjustments in your playstyle to compensate.

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Caerdon, has it been explicitly stated that ~10 is average?

 

Not to my knowledge. Have I stated that? Anyway, I think you might be getting stuck on details and missing the actual point in the process. The real problem is the linearity of the stat progression, this leads almost inevitably to stat dumping and mindless min-maxing. In order to avoid that with linear stat progression you'd have to go for extreme penalties and bonuses, and that would be a nightmare to balance.

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Caerdon, has it been explicitly stated that ~10 is average?

 

Not to my knowledge. Have I stated that? Anyway, I think you might be getting stuck on details and missing the actual point in the process. The real problem is the linearity of the stat progression, this leads almost inevitably to stat dumping and mindless min-maxing. In order to avoid that with linear stat progression you'd have to go for extreme penalties and bonuses, and that would be a nightmare to balance.

 

And Baldurs gate etc wasn't like this? It was basically a no brainer that you wanted the highest int possible if you were a mage or you might've metagamed things, such as dumping charisma to 3 because you only needed 1 character capable of conversation OR you just picked up the ring that made your charisma 18. If I was a fighter in BG, I wanted the highest str/con/dex possible, didn't care about int wis or charisma.

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Caerdon, has it been explicitly stated that ~10 is average?

 

Not to my knowledge. Have I stated that? Anyway, I think you might be getting stuck on details and missing the actual point in the process. The real problem is the linearity of the stat progression, this leads almost inevitably to stat dumping and mindless min-maxing. In order to avoid that with linear stat progression you'd have to go for extreme penalties and bonuses, and that would be a nightmare to balance.

 

What I'm getting at is why you're assuming that going under a certain amount is "dumping" a stat and means your character is handicapped in that area.  Especially if you're pushing for a non-linear scale, what the zero point is matters.

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But mostly the problem I have is that there's no meaningful consequences for dumping a stat to 3. If you build a fighter with 3 Might, you shouldn't be receiving a 10% bonus to base damage (especially with a melee weapon). You should be receiving a significant penalty to damage. Your Greatsword should do less than its base.

This is the second time today that I've liked something Stun wrote (well, this part of it)... Something weird is definitely going on. :grin:

 

But yeah, this is something I absolutely agree with, and it's something I've been saying for some time. The problem is that attributes give bonuses/penalties in a very linear manner when the penalty for lowering a stat from the average range should be increasingly more severe the lower you go.

 

There's nothing really wrong with min-maxing and it should remain possible, but it should carry a price. Dumping a stat should mean that you're handicapping your character in some aspect (beyond just "oh dear, my accuracy is slightly below average") and you need to make significant adjustments in your playstyle to compensate.

 

 

This would contradict the design goal: no bad builds. The whole design is that however you place the attribute points, you'll still have a successful character because the base class is already built for success, for you.

 

That's why people are saying there is no point having the attribute 'modifying' system. Personally, the more I see people defending it the more I agree that it should be removed - it's getting in the way of playing and enjoying the game.

 

Give us the predefined classes and lots of skills and talents etc to customise our play style. 'Might' can just as well be a skill and probably makes a better skill than it does attribute.

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And Baldurs gate etc wasn't like this? It was basically a no brainer that you wanted the highest int possible if you were a mage or you might've metagamed things, such as dumping charisma to 3 because you only needed 1 character capable of conversation OR you just picked up the ring that made your charisma 18. If I was a fighter in BG, I wanted the highest str/con/dex possible, didn't care about int wis or charisma.

BG was like this, which was one of its major faults.

 

What I'm getting at is why you're assuming that going under a certain amount is "dumping" a stat and means your character is handicapped in that area.  Especially if you're pushing for a non-linear scale, what the zero point is matters.

 

What I'm saying is that going to the very bottom should mean your character is handicapped in that area.

 

This would contradict the design goal: no bad builds. The whole design is that however you place the attribute points, you'll still have a successful character because the base class is already built for success, for you.

 

No, it wouldn't. It would just mean that your character is handicapped in that particular area, but is more capable in other areas. Adjust your playstyle to match. The whole point of the "no bad builds" concept is that the other attributes can be useful too, which wasn't the case in the BG series.

 

--

 

Sorry guys, unfortunately I'm leaving for work now and I can't continue this right now. I'm planning to start a new thread about diminishing returns and other related stuff later, because I've been having the same discussions in several places and frankly I think a lot of people just don't really understand the concept and its repercussions (not referring to you specifically).

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No bad builds is such a ****ing stupid idea it's giving me a headache.

 

Did you try thinking again?

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What I'm getting at is why you're assuming that going under a certain amount is "dumping" a stat and means your character is handicapped in that area.  Especially if you're pushing for a non-linear scale, what the zero point is matters.

 

What I'm saying is that going to the very bottom should mean your character is handicapped in that area.

 

This would contradict the design goal: no bad builds. The whole design is that however you place the attribute points, you'll still have a successful character because the base class is already built for success, for you.

 

No, it wouldn't. It would just mean that your character is handicapped in that particular area, but is more capable in other areas. Adjust your playstyle to match. The whole point of the "no bad builds" concept is that the other attributes can be useful too, which wasn't the case in the BG series.

 

--

 

Sorry guys, unfortunately I'm leaving for work now and I can't continue this right now. I'm planning to start a new thread about diminishing returns and other related stuff later, because I've been having the same discussions in several places and frankly I think a lot of people just don't really understand the concept and its repercussions (not referring to you specifically).

 

Let me just confirm that I'm understanding what you want properly - increasingly severe penalties as you lower attribute scores below some (presently undefined) average amount, and initially steep benefits from raising scores above average that eventually plateau?

 

(now with not very good graph included!)

post-42255-0-66703900-1409003194_thumb.png

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No bad builds is such a ****ing stupid idea it's giving me a headache.

 

 

  This isn't a useful comment. Why do you think it's a bad idea? 

 

(1) Do you want people to inadvertently build a bad character? 

(2) Do you think that it isn't possible?

(3) Do you think it necessarily means that the attributes can't have a large enough dynamic range?

(4) Some other reason?

 

As it is, you're adding noise to the discussion. Most of the discussion revolves around something like point 3 (which remains to be seen). Point 1 is ridiculous. Point 2 is clearly not true.  Maybe you have an actual 4th point that would add to the discussion. Do you or not? 

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Yeah, I really don't like the stat system they went with.

 

Torchlight 2 tried doing something very similar, and all it really succeeded in doing was gimping the Outlander and making the whole attributes system feel awkward. Personally I'd prefer it if POE just did a good old RPG system.

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I honestly do not see the problem of min/maxing, actually I think it would be a good idea to allow it because a lot of people likes to play that way.

 

An option to reduce the possibility of bad builds due to erroneous attribute selection, is to allow the player to auto-select the attributes if they are utterly clueless about the mechanics. This was possible in NWN.

 

If they do not go high/moderate reward vs high/moderate penalty with the attributes, they better get rid of them.

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Philosophically, the problem with preventing "bad builds" is that in doing so one will inherently diminish, if not outright sabotage, variation. Variation is one of the principle enjoyments of any game, let alone a game with character customization. Lack of variation implicitly removes player agency.  Without opportunity cost, choices don't matter. No bad builds ensures lack of opportunity cost; therefore, lack of variation/player agency.

 

People are really getting lost in the minutia though, and are failing to understand what Obsidian was trying to do with this attribute system. I personally feel like there would be much less fuss if Obsidian had chosen abstracts such as "Minor, Lesser, Standard, Greater, Major", etc. while keeping mechanical the values hidden. As Obsidian does not have intentions of allowing attributes to be increased with level, the player doesn't necessarily need to understand the degree of abstraction--only that it exists and what trend that the distinction implies.

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A "no bad builds" system simply moves where it is that you can utterly screw up what you're doing from creating your character to playing your character.  I do not think this is a bad thing, or reduces variation; quite the opposite, in fact, because any character I potentially create has some viable playstyle, if I can simply work out what it is and use that character effectively.  It's a system that rewards understanding the mechanics involved over knowing a few narrow builds.

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Philosophically, the problem with preventing "bad builds" is that in doing so one will inherently diminish, if not outright sabotage, variation. Variation is one of the principle enjoyments of any game, let alone a game with character customization. Lack of variation implicitly removes player agency.  Without opportunity cost, choices don't matter. No bad builds ensures lack of opportunity cost; therefore, lack of variation/player agency.

 

This is just nonsense. How do you get from "no bad builds" to "less variation"? The PoE attribute system as it is designed(Ignoring balancing right now) is meant to add variation by allowing you to create classes that focus on various sub-types. It sounds more like you're trying to squeeze as many clever-sounding words into your comment to distract from the fact that you actually don't have an argument.

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No bad builds is such a ****ing stupid idea it's giving me a headache.

 

 

  This isn't a useful comment. Why do you think it's a bad idea? 

 

(1) Do you want people to inadvertently build a bad character? 

(2) Do you think that it isn't possible?

(3) Do you think it necessarily means that the attributes can't have a large enough dynamic range?

(4) Some other reason?

 

As it is, you're adding noise to the discussion. Most of the discussion revolves around something like point 3 (which remains to be seen). Point 1 is ridiculous. Point 2 is clearly not true.  Maybe you have an actual 4th point that would add to the discussion. Do you or not? 

 

It is possible, just look at the attribute system that is now. No bad builds means minimum character customization, attributes have negligible effect, which makes race and culture pointless as well. Basically no bad builds means no builds. Well there's the cosmetic aspect of course.

 

The attribute system is overly complicated while being bland( what's with the percentages). You can't even describe your character with the current attributes, because they're missing charisma and strength equivalent. If Might is strength then every caster has to be a muscleman or has to forfeit spell damage.

Having damage, healing and spellpower on one attribute means that every character will max the same thing, every character will be able to move that boulder :yes:  and it will make battlemages and cleric characters way stronger than the ones that focus on either melee or spells instead of on both. Not that any of this matters if the attributes aren't changed to be more impactful.

 

A lot of spells are boring and confusing. Mirror image increases deflection instead of absorbing a number of hits. There's like a dozen spells that do the same thing, increase Deflection.

 

Spells don't scale per level, which will make them useless at higher levels, also the reason why there are so many duplicates(wizard's duplicate, mirrored image, displaced image, minor missiles, bounding missiles).

 

There are no immunities, the main thing I liked about BG2's combat system.

 

Interrupt mechanic affects melee attacks from what I understand, confusing and unnecessary.

 

I love ciphers and paladins!

 

/end rant

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No bad builds means minimum character customization, attributes have negligible effect, which makes race and culture pointless as well. Basically no bad builds means no builds. Well there's the cosmetic aspect of course.

 

 

More nonsense detected. Substantiate your claims.

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It is possible, just look at the attribute system that is now. No bad builds means minimum character customization, attributes have negligible effect, which makes race and culture pointless as well. Basically no bad builds means no builds. Well there's the cosmetic aspect of course.

 

The attribute system is overly complicated while being bland( what's with the percentages). You can't even describe your character with the current attributes, because they're missing charisma and strength equivalent. If Might is strength then every caster has to be a muscleman or has to forfeit spell damage.

Having damage, healing and spellpower on one attribute means that every character will max the same thing, every character will be able to move that boulder :yes:  ...

 

Use athletics to describe that.  As for no bad builds meaning no builds, that's simply incorrect.  You can argue that the differences need to be more substantial, but if you think nobody is coming up with different build ideas, you simply haven't been reading closely enough.  I'd recommend starting with PrimeJunta's various posts on potential builds s/he has tried or is considering.

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No bad builds means minimum character customization, attributes have negligible effect, which makes race and culture pointless as well. Basically no bad builds means no builds. Well there's the cosmetic aspect of course.

 

 

More nonsense detected. Substantiate your claims.

 

 

He already did. This forum has gone full retard.

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