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IndiraLightfoot

List of Prios to Fix until the Early 2015 Release

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Well, I'm curious: Which improvements are the priorities that you want to see OE nail before the game is released in early 2015?

 

Here are my prios, anyways, which would make PoE a much better game, in no particular order:

-Make each and every class so fun and viable in combat and all that we get a hard time choosing one whenever we start a new game. Balance them, yes, but not at the cost of making them hum-drum and similar

-Take the time and add more talents and possibly feats for each class. Have stuff happening at every level-up

-In general, let us shape various versions of each class, at least combat-wise, which are clearly different from one another, through the char creation and char development

-Make attributes matter more, please

-Somehow fix the rush-fest implosion that is combat right now, make the user interfaces be as informative and intuitive as possible: slow down animations, movement speeds, etc, on party and enemies, and more importantly, add animations for various states in combat: idling, recovery, attack alts, spell casting alts, for various states of incapacity

-Don't counteract ranged attacks and spells at all costs out of fear of kiting. Instead redesign combat so that it can be reasonably slow and still have ranged tactics

-Give us a little more non-combat skills to use while not in combat, during exploring and conversations with NPCs. Perhaps even add in more class and background checks/options for the main pc (this means more writing, so it would mess up any feature complete tick offs). It would be great if the game reacted to that background we pick and the class we are as much as possible, plus race, gender and faction, obviously

 

 

If they fix these, then we will get a wonderful CRPG! :)

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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I don't really get the last complaint. On account of how you judge a lack of it in the first place.

Edited by C2B
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I'd like to see a list from Obsidian on some of the major issues they're trying to fix and possibly get feedback on those issues. Have an open two way dialogue on some of the major issues and concerns that Obsidian have and get our feedback on possible changes and improvements.

 

At the moment, we have no idea what major issues there are. What are the major issues and what would be deemed as minor issues. And suggestions from people like Sensuki may be small issues that they're putting aside while they're tackling bigger issues. And that to me comes across as a little futile for some people who are giving great suggestions if those suggestions are being put aside and put into the small issue tray and then forgotten under the piles of other issues that come in.

 

I could list a whole heap of suggestions that I think are important but in the eyes of Obsidian, they may see it as small things.

Edited by Hiro Protagonist II
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C2B: It's twofold, really. In the beta, we've just seen a few locked doors and chests, and a few traps. I want much more of that, almost on par with WL2. Secondly, I base my suggestion on this reply by Josh in Nov 2013 in that PcWorld interview:

"Do you have class specific dialogue options? If you are playing a priest, would you have priestly things to say occasionally?

JS: Yeah, occasionally. Class-specific responses are less common than ones that are triggered by ability scores, but yeah, we’ll have some."

 

I reckon that's too little in a RPG, there's no good reason to increase that - and furthermore, I don't want those backgrounds we pick, geographically, and where you get to be a rebel or a hunter or a worker, to be just for show. Add some RPG weight to them as well. It's pretty cheap game cost-wise to improve in that field.

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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I'd like to see a list from Obsidian on some of the major issues they're trying to fix and get feedback on those issues. Have an open two way dialogue on some of the major issues and concerns that Obsidian have and get our feedback on possible changes.

That would be ideal. OE gives us their stumbling blocks, and we get to give them feedback on those, and then after that, we can take on those problems in earnest.


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

 

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I'd post here, but we all know my opinions on prioritizing bugs for the players rather than for the game.

 

They are strong.

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C2B: It's twofold, really. In the beta, we've just seen a few locked doors and chests, and a few traps. I want much more of that, almost on par with WL2. Secondly, I base my suggestion on this reply by Josh in Nov 2013 in that PcWorld interview:

"Do you have class specific dialogue options? If you are playing a priest, would you have priestly things to say occasionally?

JS: Yeah, occasionally. Class-specific responses are less common than ones that are triggered by ability scores, but yeah, we’ll have some."

 

I reckon that's too little in a RPG, there's no good reason to increase that - and furthermore, I don't want those backgrounds we pick, geographically, and where you get to be a rebel or a hunter or a worker, to be just for show. Add some RPG weight to them as well. It's pretty cheap game cost-wise to improve in that field.

 

Class specific options being triggered less than ability ones sounds logical to me. What rpg favors the first?

 

I really doubt Obsidian of all people skimped out on these options and actually thought the beta offered a lot for being a side area (The first made as well) but YMMV.

 

Rather they focus their writing and design team on the expansion and concentrate on system fixes for this one.

Edited by C2B
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Rather they focus their writing and design team on the expansion and concentrate on system fixes for this one.

 

I agree on this. My list was in no particular order, but indeed, this is by far the least important thing on it. :)


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

 

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Rather they focus their writing and design team on the expansion and concentrate on system fixes for this one.

 

Yeah, as much as people don't like to say it, the first in a series is usually the test subject. 

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That would be ideal. OE gives us their stumbling blocks, and we get to give them feedback on those, and then after that, we can take on those problems in earnest.

 

Part of me feels like to create a couple of threads, give some really good feedback but then I think, is this really important to Obsidian? Do they have bigger problems to tackle and see my suggestion as something small. Look at Sensuki's suggestions, the amount of threads he's created, the extraordinary feedback he's given, the mock-ups of U.I. design, so much stuff that a lot of the backers like and would like to see in the game. Then look at how many of Sensuki\s suggestions have been implemented. And I'm not suggesting everything Sensuki has suggested should be in the game. But there's a lot that I like. And it's not just Sensuki. There's been a lot of good suggestions from a lot of people.

 

That's why it'd be good to see what are the big issues for Obsidian. Is it just mostly balancing and bug fixing? There's no more changing anything major? At the moment, people create threads with suggestions and it feels like it may be looked at by Obsidian and then tossed to the side. Maybe Obsidian are too far into development where a lot can't be changed?

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One thing I really appreciated was that list at the very start of the BB: Josh listed a number of things he wanted feedback on.

This would be a good time to be doing something similar, and perhaps with an addition of a little list with things that won't get changed for various reasons (too late in dev, they are non-negotiable, or whatever).


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

 

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I would like combat UI/feedback to continue to be fine tuned as it's taking positive steps but is still a little way off the near perfection I'm sure they can achieve. 

 

+Balancing

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maybe with the new timeline they have time to crank out those hand drawn sketches for items (screw combat feedback, i want eye candy)

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Marinus: That would be fabulous. If they have the resources, I'd say go for it.


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

 

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I don't have time to do a big write up about this but there are several areas I think need quite a bit of improvement:

  • Performance
  • Pathfinding - nuff said
  • AI - nuff said
  • Fog of War
  • Persistence / Save Load
  • Combat Feedback - is a mess / lacking
  • Melee Engagement - is a mess
  • User Interface Screens (most of them, excluding dialogue and scripted interaction)
  • UI Options (things need to be toggleable, extra granularity, sliders implemented)
  • More & Better Animations
  • Spell FX - too flashy most of the time
  • Attribute System (design/balancing)
  • Recovery Time - needs a look
  • Combat Speed & Pacing - too much pausing at the moment
  • Health System - need to get adventuring day right in relation to game difficulty
  • Movement Speed - too fast
  • Weapon Balance - low dmg weapons suck unless you're a rogue
  • Weapon Style balance - shields are bad on most classes, two weapon fighting is broken
  • Ability & Spell Balance - some abilities and spells are garbage, some are OP
  • Class Balance
  • Creature Balance
  • Area Navmesh issues - Dyrford Crossing has several navmesh issues
  • Player Race Character Art - proportions, quality, visual recognition needs work
  • Player Race Armor & Proportions - no uniformity yet
  • Player Race Heads - a lot of them are unfinished
  • Character Portraits - need more
  • Sound Design - missing a lot of sounds
  • Area Design (Mostly related to Dyrford Crossing, I have not spent time in Stormwall Gorge yet - one at a time)
  • Controls - control schemes need work, functions need addition / splitting
  • Graphical Issues - occlusion and sorting are big problems at the moment
  • Environment and Character Colors - too washed out
  • Talent System
  • Character Creation / Leveling Up - need more stuff, change UI, change order
  • Looting - not all characters drop their gear

I regularly post about all of these topics, but my next Beta Version Review thread will cover everything I listed here and more.

Edited by Sensuki
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Sensuki: You ambitious dawg! That's an excellent and almost exhaustive list. :)


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

 

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Good lists, @Indira and @Sensuki. I even agree about most of 'em, although a fair few items on both would fall under "nice to have but not essential" in my list of priorities.

 

(FWIW it would be pretty easy to prepare a similar list about any of the IE games. Many of the items would even be identical. Pathfinding, attribute system, weapon and weapon style balance, ability and spell balance, class balance...)

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I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

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So basically a new game. :p On a serious note, I hope the next update balances out the enemies on how they should be in the game. We've gone from one extreme with the encounters to the other. From hard to roflstomping the enemies.

 

Also, I find Stormwall Gorge very boring. The encounter design needs to be improved as I find the top half of the map a waste.

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Same with the Dyrford Crossing really. There's a couple of okay encounters but for the most part less interesting than a half decent Baldur's Gate 1 area.

 

It doesn't require a new game - the programming has been done, the systems are in, the content has been (mostly) created and now it needs to be improved.

Edited by Sensuki
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(FWIW it would be pretty easy to prepare a similar list about any of the IE games. Many of the items would even be identical. Pathfinding, attribute system, weapon and weapon style balance, ability and spell balance, class balance...)

 

The Attribute System is an implementation of D&D, so as far as that's concerned it's a success. PE doesn't even achieve it's own design goals regarding that IMO and the pathfinding etc is worse than the IE games, all of them actually.

 

The 2E games did pretty well with the majority of classes, especially if you take dual and multi-classing into account. Straight Thieves and Bards are pretty bad though.

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(FWIW it would be pretty easy to prepare a similar list about any of the IE games. Many of the items would even be identical. Pathfinding, attribute system, weapon and weapon style balance, ability and spell balance, class balance...)

This is so very true, and actually one reason why OE will have their hands full the coming months. When making a spiritual successor of the IE games, they are actually, in a way, giving us the hope of a new and updated version of those, where lots of stuff that weren't that great are improved upon. Also, bluntly put, they have been so ambitious, even re-inventing a few wheels, in this quest for a new and improved IE-like game that they are now staggering under the weight of new-stuff balancing and their reconceived combat. In short, some of the stuff, they should have just kept like they were, which would have saved them time.


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

 

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I have high standards and high attention to detail, but I think that's a good thing in this case.

Edited by Sensuki

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Well, I'm curious: Which improvements are the priorities that you want to see OE nail before the game is released in early 2015?

 

Here are my prios, anyways, which would make PoE a much better game, in no particular order:

-Make each and every class so fun and viable in combat and all that we get a hard time choosing one whenever we start a new game. Balance them, yes, but not at the cost of making them hum-drum and similar

-Take the time and add more talents and possibly feats for each class. Have stuff happening at every level-up

-In general, let us shape various versions of each class, at least combat-wise, which are clearly different from one another, through the char creation and char development

-Make attributes matter more, please

-Somehow fix the rush-fest implosion that is combat right now, make the user interfaces be as informative and intuitive as possible: slow down animations, movement speeds, etc, on party and enemies, and more importantly, add animations for various states in combat: idling, recovery, attack alts, spell casting alts, for various states of incapacity

-Don't counteract ranged attacks and spells at all costs out of fear of kiting. Instead redesign combat so that it can be reasonably slow and still have ranged tactics

-Give us a little more non-combat skills to use while not in combat, during exploring and conversations with NPCs. Perhaps even add in more class and background checks/options for the main pc (this means more writing, so it would mess up any feature complete tick offs). It would be great if the game reacted to that background we pick and the class we are as much as possible, plus race, gender and faction, obviously

 

 

If they fix these, then we will get a wonderful CRPG! :)

This is a great list, I support each of these, especially making attributes matter more. And I would love to turn their bonuses into integers while leaving the % behind the scene away from public eyes. 

- Also I want improvements on combat feedback like what Sensuki suggested in couple of video (does not need to be exactly as he suggested) and some way to easily know each character current action (either like in NWN or DAO with a little box near top middle of the screen or like in BGEE with icons on portraits). 

- And don't let spell effects make the combat unreadable like they did in NWN2, NWN2 was just terrible in that aspect. 

- And don't have all spells/special attacks have same action time and same recovery time, it is more interesting if we have to choose spells/attacks based on their speed and not only based on their effects. This is especially fun in this system where each person has its own timers and no 6s global ones like in IE games.

- Pathfinding has to be good. We should not notice ever problems with pathfinding.

Edited by archangel979
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I don't want the combat to be slowed down too much, because a lot of it depends on what weapons you are carrying.

If you don't use an overpowered bulid with the current atribute system, and if you use the wrong weapons vs the enemy, the battles are actually tediously long.

If they want to slow down the combat, then lower the reduction difference between weapons vs each armor.

That, or actually allow weapon swaping during combat, from the inventory.

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The action/attack speed is not the issue.

 

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/29325716/Pillars%20of%20Eternity/Sensuki_Matt516_Attribute_Rework.pdf

 

Page 17

 

"We are aware that not all of the backers share this opinion, but we believe that most of the backers that

are claiming that combat is too fast are doing so because of the lethality of combat in Pillars of Eternity
compared to the Infinity Engine games, combined with a number of other factors. Below are some of
the factors we think are contributing to the feeling of combat being too fast other than the speed of unit
actions:

 High per-hit damage of enemies combined with normalized attack resolutions
 Underpowered Backer Beta characters (due to lack of gear)
 The movement speed of all units in combat is too fast
 Lack of visual, audio and UI feedback in combat
 Player unfamiliarity with the game’s systems
 Higher level of micromanagement required due to more active and modal abilities for all classes

We believe these factors are working in concert to cause many of the backers (myself included – Matt)
to feel stressed and not in control when in combat, causing a feeling that the game speed is too fast.
While this may be partially true, we do not think it is purely related to the speed of unit actions, as we
have observed some of the backers saying that the speed is too fast while also stating that the recovery times are too long."

 

Now Creatures have had a huge nerf so every encounter is pretty short, unless it's against humanoid enemies. Not the way I'd go about balancing but I read somewhere that Josh starts off by "doubling and halving" *shrug*.

Edited by Sensuki

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