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Aug-Oct PoE BB - unwelcome similarities to DA2?


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Agiel linked me a RPGCodex article by VentilationofDoom - VaultDweller. It was a review and analysis of the speedily developed DA2.

http://www.rpgcodex.net/content.php?id=224

 

However, when reading it, and then having read topics here, like "Does OE rush the game?", I for one do see worrying signs of similarity and common pitfalls. I must say that OE's decision to postpone it until early 2015 seems even better now after this little read-through:

 

 

"The obsolete “to hit chance” mechanic is gone. In your grandpa's RPGs, unsuccessful attacks missed their target. In Dragon Age 2 they merely cause less damage (glancing blows)."

 

This feature, which I personally dislike, is in PoE BB.

 

 

"Your primary stat (one for each class; might as well make the system even more ‘welcoming’ and call it DAMAGE!!!) determines your base damage and your chance to do extra damage.  A system where you always hit is an HP game, so you’ll be hitting the “bosses” aka HP behemoths for a very, very long time."

 

This is more similar then what one may care to think. Might in Poe is so very close to being each and every character's DAMAGE attribute - physical and magical - the lot. Also, up until this last build, fights did go on for a long time (obviously due to DT thresholds etc) - but attrition combat in CRPGs is rarely that fun.

"The non-combat abilities are predictably gone.  Which is way better than spending some skilly skill points because it never fails!"

 

Well, the lack of non-combat skills has been pretty glaring. However, PoE seems to make up for this via ability checks used in convos and nice scripted events with neat illustrations.

"The combat talents have been greatly expanded. At first glance the game offers more diversity of choice, but after playing for a while you realize that it actually offers less. For instance, in Dragon Age warriors had 4 talent lines: dual weapon, archery, weapon & shield, two handed. In Dragon Age 2 warriors have only two combat lines – weapon & shield and two handed. If you want to play a dual-wielding fighter, you HAVE to play a rogue."

 

I've seen it pointed out at times that there are more talent picks and such after four or eight level-ups in PoE than in BG1. I haven't really counted them, but I do fear that as things stand now, the classes are lacking in diversity. There is one tanky way to be a fighter, that's the best. He/she could use a bow, but that's not optimal. If you want to deal more damage, pick a rogue instead, and stuff like that.

 

The pretty infamous corridor maps from DA2 is worth mentioning too in this context, since there have been topics and posts about concerns over PoE's smallish outdoor maps. I must say that the subterranean dungeon was very nice, but the outdoor areas a bit underwhelming. I really do hope that the combat encounters won't be anything near the monotony seen in DA2, though.

 

All in all, I had never made any comparisons between these problems and DA2's before, which is known to have been rushed.

But now, with OE deciding not to rush things, I can only hope that none of these DA2-problems will rear their ugly heads in the finished version of PoE. :)
 

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 see the similarities. For instance, the supposed loss of non-combat skills. PoE retains all the thief staples of lockpicking and trap disarming, has a greatly improved stealth system and attribute checks in dialogue are far better than any dialogue skills.

 

PoE still has misses, just not as many as your average D&D game.

 

PoE's attribute system is also nothing like DA2's. Like, nothing at all.

 

I agree with the criticism of PoE's outdoor environments, although that's again nothing like the most prominent problem of DA2's environments, which is that they were constantly recycled.

Edited by Quetzalcoatl
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I don't like the glancing or mig = damage for evryone either.

 

 

Agreed. I dont like it either. I didnt even like DAO (the first one) combat and attribute system (altough DAO had also very good things, mainly the storytelling), and it seems PoE is much like DAO in that aspect. Bad news, imo. I dont understand why the hell they dont just copy (with some tweaks) the system that has worked well for decades (D&D).  

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well, i find it rather not so surprising that one isometric rpg is similar to another one in certain aspects, i guess there is barely any isometric rgp out there that doesn't have SOME things in common with PoE

 

but then, dragon age 2 is one of my favourite games of all time, so i am rather hard pressed to think of it as very terrible if a games shares certain aspects with that game *shrug*

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I don't like the glancing or mig = damage for evryone either.

 

 

Agreed. I dont like it either. I didnt even like DAO (the first one) combat and attribute system (altough DAO had also very good things, mainly the storytelling), and it seems PoE is much like DAO in that aspect. Bad news, imo. I dont understand why the hell they dont just copy (with some tweaks) the system that has worked well for decades (D&D).  

 

1. They don't have the licence.

2. They don't consider D&D a good system.

 

And I agree that some PoE systems remind more of DAO then IE games.

Edited by archangel979
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I am much more troubled with the similarities between POE and the other old school games like Candyland and Chutes and Ladders when what they should be doing is concentrating on Gin Rummy and Cribbage... :no:

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I have a few problems with the systems of Poe, which I won't go into again as they're common, but the limited development time is not something i'm worried about. In DA2 with their own engine Bioware's design degenerated, removing many features, much content, reusing assets and propping this up with the endless waves of cooldown popping combat, not to mention the narratives incoherence and the idiocy of the cast. In contrast over the same time period, a year and a half, Obsidian took Bethesda's engine and created New Vegas, which is in my view a masterpiece that somewhat shames its predecessor.

 

Indeed as well as being known for ambitious projects that shoot far too high (for their own good at times,) Obsidian must by now have a reputation for grinding out their products at a breakneck pace.

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Yeah I'm not seeing it. At the very least, PoE won't have rapey romances where the protagonist dominates the cardboard sex object of choice.

 

System wise, I'd say no real resemblance. I do wish PoE would go with a pure DT system for armor though, as I quite liked that in New Vegas.

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I can see the similarities, but I think most of that is just a surface impression. I certainly have no worries that Obsidian will turn out another DA2 though. *shudders*

I don't want it to turn into another DAO as well. I backed it for its promise to be more like IE games, not more like DAO. 

I am sure OE would love to have another DAO on their hands (and their sales numbers) but this is not what they proposed in KS. Unfortunately mechanically the game is starting to look more like DAO then BG. Which is a shame because in my opinion DAO is a much inferior product to BG1 and 2 (or PST or even IWD games when it comes to challenging, complex and fun combat). 

 

I don't even talk about DA2 here as even DAO should not be the goal.

Edited by archangel979
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Now that OE has pushed the date into 2015, I'm less concerned that we get to see combat that's a mess or areas that are too compact, with too much trash mob encounters.

 

However,  I still think those attributes need some new twist to them before they are completely ready for enabling a wide enough array of possible builds within each class. And that latter concern - intra-class diversity- is something that certainly needs a good overhaul - the flexibility within each class, and the progression freedom within them. 

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

 

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Now that OE has pushed the date into 2015, I'm less concerned that we get to see combat that's a mess or areas that are too compact, with too much trash mob encounters.

 

However,  I still think those attributes need some new twist to them before they are completely ready for enabling a wide enough array of possible builds within each class. And that latter concern - intra-class diversity- is something that certainly needs a good overhaul - the flexibility within each class, and the progression freedom within them. 

Or let us multiclass :)

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I've always loved multi-classing in the D&D iterations, not to mention in games like Titan Quest - mostly because you can create pretty fun and whacky builds that way. Multi-classing does wonders for both roleplaying and build exploration in CRPGs and ARPGs. :)

Edited by IndiraLightfoot
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I don't like the glancing or mig = damage for evryone either.

 

Agreed. I dont like it either. I didnt even like DAO (the first one) combat and attribute system (altough DAO had also very good things, mainly the storytelling), and it seems PoE is much like DAO in that aspect. Bad news, imo. I dont understand why the hell they dont just copy (with some tweaks) the system that has worked well for decades (D&D).

1. They don't have the licence.

2. They don't consider D&D a good system.

 

And I agree that some PoE systems remind more of DAO then IE games.

 

Yes, they hate some D&D mechanisms (I know I do as well), but I say that their effort to recreate some 'faulty' rules resulted in an even more faulted combat system.

 

Like it or not, D&D has worked its system over several decades, making some basic rules the 'necessary evil'. D&D has it the best way around and I know that PoE rule-set is never gonna be as good.

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Yes, they hate some D&D mechanisms (I know I do as well), but I say that their effort to recreate some 'faulty' rules resulted in an even more faulted combat system.

Well... let's just never try anything that might not possibly be perfect on the first go.

 

Also, the game is still not finalized. You can't tell someone they failed an obstacle course when they're halfway through. Unless they died or something... Slowness and number of iterations hardly matters in light of the proper results.

 

I have no issue with people voicing complaints about the current state of the game, but they're still working on the game. Maybe spend less time deciding they've failed and more time making objective (aka useful) arguments as to why things should be changed, and how. Whether they change it or not is beyond our control, but constantly going "OH god... this dinner's gonna be burned" when it's still in the oven is both pointless and disrespectful.

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Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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Yes, they hate some D&D mechanisms (I know I do as well), but I say that their effort to recreate some 'faulty' rules resulted in an even more faulted combat system.

Well... let's just never try anything that might not possibly be perfect on the first go.

 

Also, the game is still not finalized. You can't tell someone they failed an obstacle course when they're halfway through. Unless they died or something... Slowness and number of iterations hardly matters in light of the proper results.

 

I have no issue with people voicing complaints about the current state of the game, but they're still working on the game. Maybe spend less time deciding they've failed and more time making objective (aka useful) arguments as to why things should be changed, and how. Whether they change it or not is beyond our control, but constantly going "OH god... this dinner's gonna be burned" when it's still in the oven is both pointless and disrespectful.

 

You r right, but I guess my suggestion is obvious: stick as close to true D&D as posiible. After all, this is where they got their inspiration from. Plus, we want more of such.

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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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You r right, but I guess my suggestion is obvious: stick as close to true D&D as posiible. After all, this is where they got their inspiration from. Plus, we want more of such.

And that's a very good suggestion. I know it's tricky, because there's a lot of familiarity and "like"ness affiliated with the specific mechanics of D&D, but they're having to use different mechanics because they don't have the rights to the d20 system. It's kind of hard to sort of rewrite a rulesystem while not-copying it, but still maintain the exact same feel. Still, it's an admirable goal, and a good encouragement.

 

And, for the record, I wasn't trying to burn you at the stake or anything. Just encouraging people to focus on what can be changed, and not on the pre-emptive judgement of failure, etc., is all.

Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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A lot of that boils down to, "Mechanic X, which I don't like, is different than mechanic Y, which I do like." There's nothing wrong with that, but it has nothing to do with whether or not the game is being rushed.

 

What will the game be like outside the beta? Better? Worse? Will it have waves of enemies spawn in battle? Will the maps be lazily and obviously recycled? Will the player have any real agency? Will the skills matter or are they window dressing? Will the game be rife with bugs?

 

We don't know.

 

The beta doesn't tell us enough about the game as a whole to make any reasonable speculations about development speed.

Edited by CatatonicMan
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In all honesty the guy who wrote that was reaching really really really hard.  I have played both Dragon Age 2 and Eternity plenty and there is very very little in the core mechanics I would call more than "slightly similar".  Some of the design goals may be theoretically the same, but the execution is totally dissimilar. 

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In all honesty the guy who wrote that was reaching really really really hard. I have played both Dragon Age 2 and Eternity plenty and there is very very little in the core mechanics I would call more than "slightly similar". Some of the design goals may be theoretically the same, but the execution is totally dissimilar.

Yeah, to be honest I'm baffled at how someone could come to that conclusion. I mean, PoE has 8 more classes, a skill system, a very different talent system, racial slelction with differing benefits, and no stamina/mana pool used by every class.

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