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Arsene Lupin

My biggest complaint about Pillars of Eternity? I miss the Magic Missile.

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And I think the Magic Missile spell is a good example of what I don't like about magic in Eternity.

 

(For those who don't know, Magic Missile is a D&D level 1 spell that most wizards or sorcerers start out with). The Magic Missile spell was awesome in the old IE games because it scaled with your level--the higher your level, the more missiles you could shoot, the more missiles you could shoot the more damage you could do.

 

It was great. That made the Magic Missile spell useful even at high-levels. It was also a great visual indicator of character growth. When I hit level 2 in Baldur's Gate, for example, I don't feel like I'm getting stronger because I can do slightly more damage and have slightly better stats--I feel stronger because instead of shooting out one dinky missile, I shoot two. And then hours later when my wizard is blasting 10 missiles from each fingertip--that feels truly badass.

 

Which brings me to Pillars of Eternity.

 

None of the magic (that I've seen so far) scales with the player, so low-level spells very quickly lose relevance. There are also no visual or mechanical changes to the spells... and that's really disappointing to me.

 

I love Pillars of Eternity, don't get me wrong: it's almost everything I'd hoped it would be. But I always play a wizard/sorcerer character in games like this, so it's disappointing to see that Pillars of Eternity is yet another in a long list of CRPGs that simply fails to (even try to) reach the same level as the old IE games.

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I loved BG's magic missile too, but it's very strength was also sort of a "problem." Because I could play the entire game using nothing but that one spell. I had no serious need for any other spells, I'd just fill all memorize slots with MM.

 

Now, of course one didn't have to actually use it/there were other tactics. I'm just saying when a lvl1 (or a single) spell is that good, it doesn't encourage diversity.

My main issue with mages spells in PoE is still FF - just a personal dislike because it doesn't fit the way I like to play. So I have to wait until level 8 or 9 to get those nice defense spells and then it becomes a game of just using those. Same sort of issue (for me at least), only delayed.

 

Anyway...I'm aware PoE wizards can be awesome dps dudes. Just doesn't fit my playstyle in this game, is all.

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“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts

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I think you mixed some facts about MM =)

I get what you are saying, though, and some spells progressing with levels in a more tangible manner would be nice (although Magic is VERY strong in POE).

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I'm at work and I can't think of the name of it, but there is a spell that is basically magic missile.  You get a new version as you reach the next level of the spellbook, and it is pretty dang powerful by the end.

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I'm at work and I can't think of the name of it, but there is a spell that is basically magic missile. 

 

The "Minoletta's X Missile" series.

 

It's a nice homage to the D&D spell, but OP is right that the visual and mechanical scaling up of Magic Missle in BG from its humble origins to a deadly barrage was an elegant design and felt badass. After a levelup, I was always super excited to cast it again and see how it looked with one more missile added.

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DID YOU KNOW: *Missing String*

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I'm at work and I can't think of the name of it, but there is a spell that is basically magic missile.  You get a new version as you reach the next level of the spellbook, and it is pretty dang powerful by the end.

Is it? The one that bounces a bit to a couple other enemies? I've tried it in many fights and it rarely seemed to do much of anything. Maybe you mean another one that I haven't access to yet.


“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts

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I used to clean up trash mobs with just that spell so it was maybe a little too good.


For Firedorn all the Lads grieve

 

This Adam woke up next to Eve.

 

But beneath leaves of Fig,

 

He found Berries and Twig,

 

So Himself off a cliff he did heave.

 

 

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PoE's spells all scale up at you level up, since increasing your level increases your accuracy, which affects your spells.  It is a big improvement over D&D (especially older editions) where spells didn't scale up with your character consistently, or even at all in some cases.  Sure, you might not have any easy way like more missiles to see your spells scaling with your level, but to be fair most D&D spells don't provide that sort of feedback either.

Edited by Emptiness
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^ So I guess that missile spell will seem more powerful when I'm lvl 12. It's still really lackluster at lvl9, however. I haven't been impressed with most of the non-AoE wizard offensive dmg. spells.


“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts

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PoE's spells all scale up at you level up, since increasing your level increases your accuracy, which affects your spells.  It is a big improvement over D&D (especially older editions) where spells didn't scale up with your character consistently, or even at all in some cases.

 

PoE's magic system in general makes a lot more sense than D&D's, especially behind the scenes. But what's behind the scenes doesn't alway translate very clearly to the player.

 

And I think OP was talking about the specific design of this one spell in the Baldur's Gate games, which really was a standout.

 

Providing clear visual cues to the player is something that PoE struggles with in a number of areas -- for example the engagement system was completely bewildering for most of the Beta, and it's central to how combat works. Luckily that one was clarified before release, but this is an issue Obsidian would be smart to work on.

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DID YOU KNOW: *Missing String*

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PoE went the way not of upgrading its spells, but of introducing better versions of it at higher levels. There are more powerful MM versions - as separate spells later on.

That said, there are some spells from the lower levels that remain useful until the very end. I cast Slicken still in Act IV (even after the nerf), the Cipher's Mind Blades and that Paralysis spell (both from level 2) are still useful later on. I even used the level 1 Magic Missiles now and then, esp. after they become per encounter. They're not bad at interrupting enemies while doing some damage without draining vital resources like high-level spells.

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I agree with OP, the lack of scaling spells makes them disappointing. I find myself not using the low-level spells very much when I'm between 6-9. Then again, a problem wit the IE magic system is that some spells are clearly better than others and sme are useless after a certain level. Like Sleep becoming useless and Magic Missile becoming a reliable damage dealer. Wish they would find a middle ground there.

 

And Cipher > Wizard. Seriously, my Cipher PC can almost always use his best powers in a fight were Aloth I have to save his good hit for later encounters.

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So play to the spells strengths: It shoots three missiles vs Deflection that do crush damage...

 

the spell feels lacklustre in two main circumstances (in my opinion)

 

1) Against high Defence foes; misses and grazes aren't fun.

 

2) Against highly armoured foes; lots of small damage results in very little against DR 15...

 

So for it to be awesome you need to play around with it:

 

0 - All spell attacks benefit greatly from eldritch aim, your level 9 so can cast it every fight!

1 - multi hit attacks are very good if you have combusting wounds cast on your foes - all the hits are causing an extra instance of burn damage...

2 - multi hit attacks are good with merciless gaze (15% chance turn hit's to crits) - great to cast then go to town with many missiles!

3 - multi hit attacks are great with DR reduction - use after a chanter lowers the DR of your foes, or after you've used expose vulnerabilities.

 

You don't have to use all of these tricks, but knowing what the spell does and how to best utilise it makes it super cool... yeah it's not devastating by itself, but you can cast other (super useful) spells and abilities that turn it into a much stronger spell!

 

Have fun missilizzzzing people!

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Plenty of low level spells are still very powerful later on; hell, Fan of Flames, a level 1 spell, remains very useful all the way up to the endgame. 50ish damage AoE is nothing to sneeze at even then. Slicken remains as OP as ever all game long. Thrust of Tattered Veils interrupts anything regardless of level. Half of the Cipher's level 1-2 spells are still plenty good later on.

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I loved BG's magic missile too, but it's very strength was also sort of a "problem." Because I could play the entire game using nothing but that one spell. I had no serious need for any other spells, I'd just fill all memorize slots with MM.

 

Now, of course one didn't have to actually use it/there were other tactics. I'm just saying when a lvl1 (or a single) spell is that good, it doesn't encourage diversity.

My main issue with mages spells in PoE is still FF - just a personal dislike because it doesn't fit the way I like to play. So I have to wait until level 8 or 9 to get those nice defense spells and then it becomes a game of just using those. Same sort of issue (for me at least), only delayed.

 

Anyway...I'm aware PoE wizards can be awesome dps dudes. Just doesn't fit my playstyle in this game, is all.

well, with a few chromatic orbs mixed in, for level one spell that gives uber paralysis once you hit what was it?  like level 6?

 

 

Edited by Ichthyic

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Slicken is OP, fan of flames is solid, expeditious retreat is awesome for that disengagement bonus and outrinning everything. The +15 spell is important as well. lvl 1 is still weak because.. its lvl1 but it has its spells which see use all game long.

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as others have said.. you get better versions of the spell later on, so they did that verses upgrading a single spell.  also, as someone mentioned, that spell becomes per encounter later on so if it did do what you mentioned, it would - IMO - render the later level per rest damage spells useless.

 

so on one hand i see your point.. but on the other.. im ok with what they did.. they have more powerful versions of the spell that you can use later in the game.. its just named a little different.. and they STILL give utility to the lower level version because it eventually becomes per encounter instead of per rest.

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I even used the level 1 Magic Missiles now and then, esp. after they become per encounter.

i have seen this mentioned multiple times. but imlevel 12and have 4 (+2 fromring of wizardry) level one spells? could anyole elaborate

 

 (although Magic is VERY strong in POE).

Force is wery strong in this one,it is


PIllars of eternty (Hard) 1st playtrough: 155h, 38 m (main Ranger with bear(bow), Eder, Durance(off tank), Hirvais(off tank), Kana(ranged), Aloth/GM)
PIllars of eternty (PtoD) 2nd playtrough: 88h 30 m (main Bleak Walker Paladin, Eder, Barbarian, Monk, Rogue (ranged) Cypher(wand)
(not counting reloads and experimenting)
status i love the game, hate the bugs, and wish for better AI and Pathfinding

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/78749-needed-qualyty-of-life-improvements-information-and-transparency/

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last i looked, level one spells are supposed to be per encounter starting at level 9, and level 2 starting at level 12.

do your spell numbers not refresh ater battle?

you don't get unlimited casts, mind, it just makes them per encounter instead of per rest.

 

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i have seen this mentioned multiple times. but imlevel 12and have 4 (+2 fromring of wizardry) level one spells? could anyole elaborate

Just try casting any level 1 or level 2 spell and you'll see they won't run out. :)

Edit: Outside of combat ofcourse. In combat they can run out but when combat's over they'll be replenished.

 

 

I always thought the Magic Missile was a bit odd. As far as I can recall it was the only spell in BG/BG2/IWD/IWD2 that got more effective as you leveled up.

Would be nice to see spells like Burning Hands and Aganazer's Scorcher (sp?) be more effective as well.

Edited by Gotcha!

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firebal/ligtning bolt did also.and iguess someothernumber ofspells


PIllars of eternty (Hard) 1st playtrough: 155h, 38 m (main Ranger with bear(bow), Eder, Durance(off tank), Hirvais(off tank), Kana(ranged), Aloth/GM)
PIllars of eternty (PtoD) 2nd playtrough: 88h 30 m (main Bleak Walker Paladin, Eder, Barbarian, Monk, Rogue (ranged) Cypher(wand)
(not counting reloads and experimenting)
status i love the game, hate the bugs, and wish for better AI and Pathfinding

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/78749-needed-qualyty-of-life-improvements-information-and-transparency/

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None of the magic (that I've seen so far) scales with the player, so low-level spells very quickly lose relevance. There are also no visual or mechanical changes to the spells... and that's really disappointing to me.

 

I love Pillars of Eternity, don't get me wrong: it's almost everything I'd hoped it would be. But I always play a wizard/sorcerer character in games like this, so it's disappointing to see that Pillars of Eternity is yet another in a long list of CRPGs that simply fails to (even try to) reach the same level as the old IE games.

I also loved the BG2 Sorcerers, but I'm pretty sure that there will never be anything like them again. Ever. Games have developed an obsession with balance and the casters of BG2 (both arcane and divine) are anathema to this. There was just a thread on this forum complaining about level 1 spells becoming per-encounter at level 9, but in Throne of Bhaal, you could semi-reliably get every single one of your spells from all levels back for the entire party during combat. And divine casters were hardly better -- Clerics could completely heal and restore everyone with a single spell and Druids had that no-save mass blindness spell. Even in NWN, casters were a whole lot weaker and then came MMOs which basically convinced everyone that all abilities have to be balanced for the game to be fun (even though it definitely wasn't true in the older games!).

 

That said, give PoE Wizards a chance. I started with a Wizard and while I found it hard to play at first, once you learn what the good spells are and how to use them, they can be reasonably powerful. PoE spells do not scale with level except that your Accuracy increases (which improves the odds of all spells working well), but nor are they artificially restricted like Sleep from BG so some of them remain useful even at high levels. Also, level 1 and 2 spells become per-encounter rather than per-rest at character levels 9 and 11 respectively so you can cast them without worrying about long term resource management. And there do exist some turn-the-tide spells, like the level 4 Confusion.

 

I always thought the Magic Missile was a bit odd. As far as I can recall it was the only spell in BG/BG2/IWD/IWD2 that got more effective as you leveled up.

Would be nice to see spells like Burning Hands and Aganazer's Scorcher (sp?) be more effective as well.

No. Most damage-type spells scaled with level, though some of them (like Magic Missile and Fireball) only scaled up to a certain level and then stopped. A few (e.g. Skull Trap) scaled all the way up to level 20.

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