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Issues as according to me [Minor Spoilers]

attributes stealth combat only abilities spells experience narcissism spoilers smash cultural marxism issues

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#21
dirigible

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Limiting how much loot you can carry back would make it less profitable to murder everything, which in turn would give you some incentive to avoid combat.

I doubt this. Players would just stop killing when the pack is full, go back to sell the loot, then return to the killing spree and collect more. I personally don't see what the angst is about money in these games, as I've yet to see one that actually doesn't have you swimming in gold by the time you're mid to late level. Money, in almost all the CRPGs I can think of that I've played, has only ever been an issue (as in, not enough of it) at low levels.

Again, the main problem is that everything in the game encourages you to attack everything on sight. Which is something the developers specifically tried to avoid.

 

I don't think limiting how much loot you can carry back is a good solution, which is why I suggested other things instead.


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#22
BrickleberryPi

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Now that I have had time to play through the entire game, I would say that wizards do have that feeling of being a bit on the overpowered side with the per encounter all level 1 and 2 spells. I do agree with your idea that casters should be able to choose one spell to be switched over to per encounter, but I would also like to say that the level threshold should be lower than level 9 for first level spells and the gap between per rest->per encounter switches should be larger than 2 levels.

 

At the same time, from my experience, casters rely primarily on their spells rather than their endurance/health and standing in one mostly spot auto attacking something. If a party rests, it's usually because of injuries, low health, or low amounts of skill uses left. It feels like casters would almost always be the culprit of forced rests if they didn't have enough per encounter skills.


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#23
scrotiemcb

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Already covered attributes, now into other points in the OP...

Stealth: I'd add an additional status effect called Mute:
  • -30 Concentration
  • -10 Intelligence
  • -20 Accuracy with Spells
  • cannot use Phrases
  • does not alert other enemies to your presence
Ranger and Rogue would all get out-of-combat Silence abilities "for free" and Cipher could get one with a class-specific talent (similar to getting Arcane Veil). Other classes might have Mute abilities as well. Combat would still start, but only for the Muted enemy; you'd still be Stealthed as far as the others are concerned. Definitely agree with individual Stealth instead of party Stealth.

Experience: Here's what I would have done...
  • Far more granular Reputation system. A single dialogue choice could increase a reputation by hundreds of points
  • Give each Reputation an opposite. Gaining Deceitful when you have Honest points would just subtract Honest instead. Same with local relations.
  • No XP from killing, or Mechanics... or even from quests. Not directly, at least.
  • Your XP would be equal to the sum of the highest Reputations you've ever had. Period.
So if you want to level up, you'd have to travel to new localities to either help or harm them, and play with a somewhat consistent personality. Literally, a role playing game.

Stash: Merchants should have both...
  • limited gold. Buying from them helps, but severely limited at first.
  • individual tastes (may pay more for an item than another merchant, or sell an item for less)
These two things alone would be sufficient to discorage "murder everything" play, because you couldn't fence everything and you're always looking for the best fences. No need to add unfun inventory encumberence mechanics, unless toggled on by player choice.

Per encounter spells: should be removed completely. You're swimming in spells/day at high level anyway. It's overkill.

Combat only: should be replaced with a mechanic that durations expire 3x to 5x faster outside of combat. Still really nerfs the tactic, less immersion-breaking.

Armor being highest-or-lowest: right now all Armors have the same enchantments available. This needs to change; nothing else does. For example, an "of Evasion" mod which grants +Deflection but is only on Light Armor. Or "of the Battlemage," only on Heavy Armor, grants accuracy with Spells. Give players some hard choices here.

Stronghold: Meh. I view it as the Blitzball of this RPG, if you catch my drift. It's just a minigame and I see no sense in getting too worked up about it.

CNPCs: Nothing Obsidian ever does with them will ever be perfectly min/max. So the best they can do is what they've done: allow you to create your own lifeless replacements.

Weapon Focus groups: The groupings should make sense to someone with zero knowledge of PoE but a general knowledge of RPG tropes and historical weapons. That is all.

Intelligence is currently OP: Yep.

#24
Shadenuat

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Meh weapon groups. Just allow to pick any 3 weapons you want/Talent and I think it would be fine. Why would you pick a particular weapon should depend on if that weapon type is actually worth it for particular build or not.


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#25
dirigible

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Meh weapon groups. Just allow to pick any 3 weapons you want/Talent and I think it would be fine. Why would you pick a particular weapon should depend on if that weapon type is actually worth it for particular build or not.

I tend to agree with this.


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#26
DrBrian

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Armors require a heavy rework that's for sure, if not something as pestering than favoring one type of defense over others. Switching armor just for the purpose of mitigating more against a specifical type of damage would be the most annoying and out of place thing ever. Running around with 3 sets of armor in your bag is one thing, but changing armor every other encounter?
In place I'd prefer armor types to be more specialized towards some actions. Robes not slowing up casting speed, leather armors not slowing ranged weapons attacks, brigandine slowing far less melee attacks than casting speed or ranged weapons attacks, things like that.


I agree the trap / lockpick / bestiary xp should go away. It feels out of place and would help a good deal with the too fast leveling.

The detection only possible in stealth mode is an awful waste of time, needs to go too.

Stronghold is indeed lackluster at the moment. Could be more lively.

The Per-Encounter Spell System requires nerfing for sure.

The other points are not convincing me as much, as they would tend to replace existing issues by others or are more a matter of personal opinion than a real issue (inventory management, I'm looking at you).

Edited by DrBrian, 09 April 2015 - 01:07 AM.

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#27
ComplyOrDie

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Lots of interesting points, I would strongly argue against any stat giving +2 deflection though unless the ability to acquire it elsewhere is severely reduced, you can already make unhittable tanks.

Edited by ComplyOrDie, 09 April 2015 - 01:53 AM.

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#28
Captain Shrek

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heh



#29
Isi1dur

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Excellent post Luckmann.


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#30
kat7ra

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I REALLY hope that he devs take a look at what you've written here!

It's important to note that most of the "haters"/"critics" here do agree with you on the game being good, and we do like it. If you hate something it's hard to summon enough passion to write dozens of posts/topics on how to make it even better, you'd just throw it away.

 

I for one agree with your arguments, I might have different opinions on what's more important, but I agree with 99 % of the words you've chosen I believe.

 

For the Xp I believe it may have ended up this way because of wanting it to be similar to IWD, which is very much a kill everything in sight and get XP for it type of series. And it does feel more like an IWD successor for me than a BG one, mostly because of where the focus is.

 

Also agree on your "look at Deus Ex for inspiration" statement, it did it's quest/xp system very VERY well.

 

Only thing I can't say if I agree or disagree on is the stats system, haven't given it enough thought yet as it doesn't seem to matter that much on Hard.


Edited by kat7ra, 09 April 2015 - 08:22 AM.

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#31
Luckmann

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Hey, I appreciate all the time you've must of taken to write this all out. You've clearly puna lot of thought into it and it really shows. I agree with some of your points and disagree with others, but there's one thing in particular I want address. While I agree the attributes could be much better, removing accuracy from the system was the best thing they've done so far. Even with the changes made to damage modifiers, if you add accuracy back into the mix it becomes a must have stat, regardless of the character concept. In fact, I can't think of a character archetype where maxing accuracy wouldn't be the most optimal choice.

A CC wizard? Max Accuracy
A tanky fighter? Max Accuracy
A supporting chanter? Max Accuracy
A DPS Rogue? Min Accu... Of course you'd max Accuracy! tongue.png

Again, this not to say the current attribute system is perfect, but I'm certain adding accuracy back into the mix would only make things worse.
I may address some of your other points eventually as well, I'll just need to work up to it. wink.png


I'm not convinced. +1 Accuracy or +3% Damage and Healing, for example, I'm not convinced that the +1 Accuracy is a no-brainer. And tanks will still want to have defences, maybe even Constitution just for the reduced Recovery Penalty. +Accuracy used to be much more powerful than it is now.


OP, you need to split this up into multiple topics. It's way too hard to discuss all of your points in a single thread because while they are all related to game balance issues, some of them are distinct enough from the others to merit their own threads.

Also, most people won't bother reading your (well-formatted) wall of text. Longer doesn't always mean better, as I discovered when I started posting Let's Plays on YouTube. Despite the quality of your OP, most people won't bother reading it because of its absurd length, not to mention that it discusses a wide variety of loosely related issues.


I tire of regurgitating topics, though, for every Tom, **** and Jerry that falls into the topic 10 pages late to the party and then it's just going to be the same thing over again anyway, I wanted to write exhaustively on the biggest issues as I see them, in the vain hope that someone important would take notice, more than anything else, really.


1. Attributes

I agree with OP's appraisal of the current problem, particularly MIG/DEX vs PER/RES with INT uber alles. However, his suggestion is... well, as things stand now, a stat with +Accuracy is just a horrible suggestion, actually worse than INT is now.

Separating melee, ranged, and spell damage doesn't really accomplish anything. If a character is about damage, then they are about damage, so they'll take whichever stat boosts damage. Action speed is actually a slightly different thing, since you don't need to be about DPS to care.

However, separating Accuracy into two different stats would make a huge difference. For example, let's say Accuracy was split into two stats, the first of which now cares strictly about your ability to actually aim and hit things physically with other objects, while the second represents your ability to force your soul on others through effort of will. In general, the first Accuracy would be used exclusively against Deflection, while the second would be used exclusively against the other three defenses; for example, the Fighter's Knock Down would use the first for the primary hit (damage), and the second for the Prone status vs. Fortitude.

As Durance says, names are arbitrary. But let's call my first Accuracy "Accuracy" and the second "Soulpower" (since Will is already taken).

You might have a split like this:

MIGHT: +2 Accuracy with Melee Weapons, +2 Soulpower, +2 Fortitude
CONSTITUTION: +3% Endurance, +3% Health, +2 Concentration, +2 Fortitude
DEXTERITY: +3% Action Speed, +2% Movement Speed, +2 Reflex
PERCEPTION: +2 Accuracy with Ranged Weapons, +2 Interrupt, +2 Reflex
INTELLIGENCE: +5% Area of Effect, +2 Deflection, +2 Will
RESOLVE: +4% Duration of non-Ailment effects you create, +3% Healing received, +2 Will

I feel that's a lot more balanced than what OP proposed.


The problem I see with that is that it would make the Attributes too build-dependant, which is more or less the problem we have right now, and some of those modifiers are far too granular, such as specific to non-Ailment effects. Also, splitting Accuracy up would do absolutely nothing; most characters will already be centred around being either ranged or melee. Non-separated Accuracy would simply mean that you have a flexibility in what you do.

Also, in your suggestion, Might could award a potential +22 Accuracy (!) and Perception +20 Accuracy, a completely insane amount of Accuracy from Attributes. The setup also doesn't take spell accuracy into account. +1 Accuracy is something I think is reasonable, obviously, for a maximum of +10 Accuracy total. And you did not even touch Constitution, which is largely useless as it is already.

Limiting how much loot you can carry back would make it less profitable to murder everything, which in turn would give you some incentive to avoid combat.

I doubt this. Players would just stop killing when the pack is full, go back to sell the loot, then return to the killing spree and collect more. I personally don't see what the angst is about money in these games, as I've yet to see one that actually doesn't have you swimming in gold by the time you're mid to late level. Money, in almost all the CRPGs I can think of that I've played, has only ever been an issue (as in, not enough of it) at low levels.


Going by the IE games, this simply isn't true. You absolutely start passing on chaff loot when it starts to take up space, rather than to neurotically cart it back and forth across multiple loading screens like an OCD cleaning lady. And it's not an angst about money, but about incentives. If you can do something that costs you nothing in any way, but objectively rewards you, you're going to do it. Everyone would.

Meh weapon groups. Just allow to pick any 3 weapons you want/Talent and I think it would be fine. Why would you pick a particular weapon should depend on if that weapon type is actually worth it for particular build or not.


I'm not a fan, I like the flavourful groups, I just wish there were more of them. It just feels like it's connecting me to a concept more, and bridges the mechanics and my character, something I think is important in CRPG:s (although I know many disagree, including Obsidian, if 1.03 is anything to go by, and the changes to the CNPC:s). This is really the reason I want to move the weapons around the groups, too, because I feel that Stiletto is more "Noble" than "Ruffian" and Daggers are more "Ruffian" than "Noble".

Lots of interesting points, I would strongly argue against any stat giving +2 deflection though unless the ability to acquire it elsewhere is severely reduced, you can already make unhittable tanks.

The numbers for Interrupts and Deflection definitely needs playtesting, they're pretty arbitrary on my part. The potential for unhittable tanks is indeed a problem, but I think that's also a problem that they have to take a look at in the core of the game; the situation simply shouldn't happen as par for the course to begin with, it suggests a systemic error, rather than an isolated issue with specifically the Attributes.

#32
illathid

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Hey, I appreciate all the time you've must of taken to write this all out. You've clearly puna lot of thought into it and it really shows. I agree with some of your points and disagree with others, but there's one thing in particular I want address. While I agree the attributes could be much better, removing accuracy from the system was the best thing they've done so far. Even with the changes made to damage modifiers, if you add accuracy back into the mix it becomes a must have stat, regardless of the character concept. In fact, I can't think of a character archetype where maxing accuracy wouldn't be the most optimal choice.

A CC wizard? Max Accuracy
A tanky fighter? Max Accuracy
A supporting chanter? Max Accuracy
A DPS Rogue? Min Accu... Of course you'd max Accuracy! tongue.png

Again, this not to say the current attribute system is perfect, but I'm certain adding accuracy back into the mix would only make things worse.
I may address some of your other points eventually as well, I'll just need to work up to it. wink.png


I'm not convinced. +1 Accuracy or +3% Damage and Healing, for example, I'm not convinced that the +1 Accuracy is a no-brainer. And tanks will still want to have defences, maybe even Constitution just for the reduced Recovery Penalty. +Accuracy used to be much more powerful than it is now.
 

 

Yeah, accuracy is much less important now than it was earlier in the BB, but I still think even +1 accuracy on a stat is no brainer for any build or concept I can think of. I would even take +1 accuracy over +6% damage and healing. Your stat distribution would make it a harder decision than it is right now, but I think it would be even better without Accuracy.



#33
dirigible

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The problem I see with that is that it would make the Attributes too build-dependant, which is more or less the problem we have right now, and some of those modifiers are far too granular, such as specific to non-Ailment effects. Also, splitting Accuracy up would do absolutely nothing; most characters will already be centred around being either ranged or melee. Non-separated Accuracy would simply mean that you have a flexibility in what you do.

Attributes determine build. The only question is whether they do so in a general way or a specific way.

 

Currently they do so in a general way. You spec for damage, or for tankiness. IMO that's boring. Incredibly boring. It's also pointless, since talents determine your build in a much more specific way anyway. A character who has invested into Gunner, Two Handed Weapon, Marksman, and Shot on the Run isn't going to suddenly switch to dual wielding melee weapons on a whim.

 

If Obsidian was afraid of making their stats too important (since then a newbie could accidentally choose a combination they didn't like) then they should have had the player gain stat points on level up. Or added a respec option. Personally, I think the former option could have worked great.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: attributes, stealth, combat only, abilities, spells, experience, narcissism, spoilers, smash cultural marxism, issues

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