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RPGCodex Review #1 - Hŵrpa Dwrp

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That codex review is  very good and I agree with with almost everything. Besides buffs being useless and his class assessment.

Buffs are useless. Only time you really need to use a buff is to protect vs Charm, Confusion and Domination but the game thinks those companions are not longer your faction and the buff spells don't work on them... why Obsidian?! Why?!

(and there is not dispel magic kind of spell to use in that situation).

Edited by archangel979

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This review simply has too much "angry" in it and it seems to cloud the author's vision completely. The problems that are mentioned, while somewhat true, are nowhere near as annoying and don't stop me from enjoying the game. Sure it could be better, but the author makes it look like the worst pos ever made which just makes him look like a hired troll.

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BG1 is superior to BG2 in all ways except mechanically and, arguably, graphically. The storytelling especially. BG2 has terrible motivations and terrible literary pacing, and drops you in the middle of Athkatla, already knowing the main villain, and with an uninspiring goal. BG1 also has better areas, pacing in terms of relative power levels, better exploration, and, mostly, better quests.

 

 

Sorry, I can't take you seriously if I read something like this. I'd say that both BG1 and BG2 had a pretty weak story, so saying that BG1 was slightly better due to a better pacing is justified. I'm totally okay with that. But saying that BG1 had better quests... really? I mean; really? Name me just one quest that wasn't just "go there, beat **** up" in BG1? Certainly not clearing the endless levels of Nashkel Mines. Or all the pointless dungeons filled with hordes of copy & paste encounters.

 

I can name you dozens of memorable quests in BG2:

The Unseeing Eye, the De'Arnise Keep, the Planar Sphere, Getting the dragon eggs in Ust Natha, the Skinner of the Bridge district, the Umar Hills deaths, etc.

 

Literally every zone of BG2 had at least one memorable, multi-stage optional quest that you will definitely remember in almost every single detail. In comparison, I can't even remember almost any of the sidequests in BG1. Like literally, I played BG1 at least 5 times now and I still struggle remembering the quests.

 

 

QFT.

 

Anyone who says that BG1 had better quests or better dungeons than BG2 or PoE is clearly not talking about BG1 the actually existing game, but rather about BG1 the sugarcoated memory of how playing a fantasy cRPG for the first time as a teenager made them feel (when it had no prior expectations to measure up to).

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"Some ideas are so stupid that only an intellectual could believe them." -- attributed to George Orwell

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BG1 is superior to BG2 in all ways except mechanically and, arguably, graphically. The storytelling especially. BG2 has terrible motivations and terrible literary pacing, and drops you in the middle of Athkatla, already knowing the main villain, and with an uninspiring goal. BG1 also has better areas, pacing in terms of relative power levels, better exploration, and, mostly, better quests.

 

 

Sorry, I can't take you seriously if I read something like this. I'd say that both BG1 and BG2 had a pretty weak story, so saying that BG1 was slightly better due to a better pacing is justified. I'm totally okay with that. But saying that BG1 had better quests... really? I mean; really? Name me just one quest that wasn't just "go there, beat **** up" in BG1? Certainly not clearing the endless levels of Nashkel Mines. Or all the pointless dungeons filled with hordes of copy & paste encounters.

 

I can name you dozens of memorable quests in BG2:

The Unseeing Eye, the De'Arnise Keep, the Planar Sphere, Getting the dragon eggs in Ust Natha, the Skinner of the Bridge district, the Umar Hills deaths, etc.

 

Literally every zone of BG2 had at least one memorable, multi-stage optional quest that you will definitely remember in almost every single detail. In comparison, I can't even remember almost any of the sidequests in BG1. Like literally, I played BG1 at least 5 times now and I still struggle remembering the quests.

 

 

QFT.

 

Anyone who says that BG1 had better quests or better dungeons than BG2 or PoE is clearly not talking about BG1 the actually existing game, but rather about BG1 the sugarcoated memory of how playing a fantasy cRPG for the first time as a teenager made them feel (when it had no prior expectations to measure up to).

 

 

Also, I have to say that PoE at least offers some quests that will probably stick to my memory for an extended time. Most of it was pretty generic, but some few quests definitely stick out, like the Sanitarium or Raedrics Hold.

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I play BG:EE all the time.

 

So do my sons.

 

I did the Black Pits (great stuff), and I regularly do runs through the game itself.

 

I don't consider the Solve the Iron Ore Crisis quest a "fed ex" quest.  Nor the Rescue my Witch, Bandits, Bandits 2, etc.  Especially some of the side quests (Bassilius, freeing the woman from the stone, etc).

 

There is a huge variety of quests to do - and yes, some are fed ex.

 

As for "boring dungeons"...I really hope this is hyperbole!

 

What great dungeon do you have in PoE?!  Do you mean The Endless Paths?  You compare that with Durkon's Tower?!?  Hooboy.

 

I for example love the Cloakwood -> Bandits (Mine) series of interconnected quests/areas.  Oh right...PoE doesn't have anything like that.  What a pity.  And how things affect other quests later in the game...often much later.

 

I suppose we are going to have to do a point-to-point comparison *sigh*

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BG1 is superior to BG2 in all ways except mechanically and, arguably, graphically. The storytelling especially. BG2 has terrible motivations and terrible literary pacing, and drops you in the middle of Athkatla, already knowing the main villain, and with an uninspiring goal. BG1 also has better areas, pacing in terms of relative power levels, better exploration, and, mostly, better quests.

 

 

Sorry, I can't take you seriously if I read something like this. I'd say that both BG1 and BG2 had a pretty weak story, so saying that BG1 was slightly better due to a better pacing is justified. I'm totally okay with that. But saying that BG1 had better quests... really? I mean; really? Name me just one quest that wasn't just "go there, beat **** up" in BG1? Certainly not clearing the endless levels of Nashkel Mines. Or all the pointless dungeons filled with hordes of copy & paste encounters.

 

I can name you dozens of memorable quests in BG2:

The Unseeing Eye, the De'Arnise Keep, the Planar Sphere, Getting the dragon eggs in Ust Natha, the Skinner of the Bridge district, the Umar Hills deaths, etc.

 

Literally every zone of BG2 had at least one memorable, multi-stage optional quest that you will definitely remember in almost every single detail. In comparison, I can't even remember almost any of the sidequests in BG1. Like literally, I played BG1 at least 5 times now and I still struggle remembering the quests.

 

 

QFT.

 

Anyone who says that BG1 had better quests or better dungeons than BG2 or PoE is clearly not talking about BG1 the actually existing game, but rather about BG1 the sugarcoated memory of how playing a fantasy cRPG for the first time as a teenager made them feel (when it had no prior expectations to measure up to).

 

 

While I agree with the "first rpg experience part", BG1 DID have some nice ideas, like the garden of stone statues in the basilisk area and having to figure out by yourself to cast "stone to flesh" on them without any prior hint.

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Because Act 6 doesn't wall you off from those places. If I'd meant "acts 4-6," I'd have said, "acts 4-6." I'm sorry if that was unclear.

 

I raise the comparison because, just like losing access to Defiance Bay in PoE, it's temporary. You just have to progress the story further.

 

Well there is a reason why you can't get to Athkatla in Act 4 or 5 because you're at Spellhold or the Underdark. You've sailed away from Athkatla on a ship to the Pirate island. That's just basic comprehension.

 

However, in PoE, there's no reason why you shouldn't be able to go back to Defiance Bay prior to Twin Elms. You can travel along the country side for months before getting to Twin Elms, even walking past Defiance Bay multiple times and nope, City maps are still greyed out and can't click on them. But the moment you step on the first map in Twin Elms, Defiance Bay is magically open for business. In fact, you can turn around and go back to Defiance Bay and the city streets are pristine, people walking around going about their business. Going to the Crucible Knights, it appears nothing happened and they're just going through the motions like everyone else in the city. Dunstan the smithy mentions nothing about what happens in those weeks and months when the city was closed. And where did all the barricades, the fires, the scorched pavement go?

 

So no, greying out the Defiance Bay maps served no purpose. Or maybe it was a way for the game to force you onto Twin Elms? No player, you can't go back to this city until you get to Twin Elms! Once you step on that map, then you can come back into the city. icon_rolleyes.gif

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Because Act 6 doesn't wall you off from those places. If I'd meant "acts 4-6," I'd have said, "acts 4-6." I'm sorry if that was unclear.

 

I raise the comparison because, just like losing access to Defiance Bay in PoE, it's temporary. You just have to progress the story further.

 

Well there is a reason why you can't get to Athkatla in Act 4 or 5 because you're at Spellhold or the Underdark. You've sailed away from Athkatla on a ship to the Pirate island. That's just basic comprehension.

 

However, in PoE, there's no reason why you shouldn't be able to go back to Defiance Bay prior to Twin Elms. You can travel along the country side for months before getting to Twin Elms, even walking past Defiance Bay multiple times and nope, City maps are still greyed out and can't click on them. But the moment you step on the first map in Twin Elms, Defiance Bay is magically open for business. In fact, you can turn around and go back to Defiance Bay and the city streets are pristine, people walking around going about their business. Going to the Crucible Knights, it appears nothing happened and they're just going through the motions like everyone else in the city. Dunstan the smithy mentions nothing about what happens in those weeks and months when the city was closed. And where did all the barricades, the fires, the scorched pavement go?

 

So no, greying out the Defiance Bay maps served no purpose. Or maybe it was a way for the game to force you onto Twin Elms? No player, you can't go back to this city until you get to Twin Elms! Once you step on that map, then you can come back into the city. icon_rolleyes.gif

 

 

Right, I'm not disagreeing with this. But it's not like this is some foundational sin that Obsidian committed. It may be stupid, but while they do delay your returning to the city, they don't actually lock out its content forever without any warning. You can still get the Blade of Endless Paths, you just have to wait a bit (for reasons that are dumb, maybe, but that is what it is).


If I'm typing in red, it means I'm being sarcastic. But not this time.

Dark green, on the other hand, is for jokes and irony in general.

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And considering that Fallout came out about a year before, BG did have a fantastic RPG to measure up to (and failed miserably I might add though I still enjoyed it). original.gif

Only in game reactivity. It was much superior in combat encounters and fun options.

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Am I the only one who love BG1 more than BG2?

You're a rare species, but you ain't the only one, no. From a strictly general standpoint, people who prefer BG1 over BG2 will cite things like better exploration, more open world, its low level campaign and even its art style as better than BG2. Plus, BG1 has Durlag's tower, the single greatest dungeon experience of all the IE games. Edited by Stun
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And considering that Fallout came out about a year before, BG did have a fantastic RPG to measure up to (and failed miserably I might add though I still enjoyed it). original.gif

Only in game reactivity. It was much superior in combat encounters and fun options.

 

I'll give you combat since it's a matter of preference between turn based and rtwp, but fun options... no freaking way does anything measure up to fallout(and especially fallout2)

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You're a rare species, but you ain't the only one, no. From a strictly general standpoint, people who prefer BG1 over BG2 will cite things like better exploration, more open world, its low level campaign and even it's art style as better than BG2.

Art style? Are you saying you don't like ridiculous-looking helmets and shields, and brightly-coloured leather? Well I've never!

 

Seriously though, the loss of those beautiful helmets was the biggest loss between BG1 and 2. I have no idea what they were thinking.

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t50aJUd.jpg

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And considering that Fallout came out about a year before, BG did have a fantastic RPG to measure up to (and failed miserably I might add though I still enjoyed it). original.gif

Only in game reactivity. It was much superior in combat encounters and fun options.

 

I'll give you combat since it's a matter of preference between turn based and rtwp, but fun options... no freaking way does anything measure up to fallout(and especially fallout2)

 

So fallout had 300 spells to choose from? Petrifing enemies? Poison, disease, hold, charm, enemies with invisibilty and the rest?

No, I didn't think so.

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And considering that Fallout came out about a year before, BG did have a fantastic RPG to measure up to (and failed miserably I might add though I still enjoyed it). original.gif

Only in game reactivity. It was much superior in combat encounters and fun options.

 

I'll give you combat since it's a matter of preference between turn based and rtwp, but fun options... no freaking way does anything measure up to fallout(and especially fallout2)

 

So fallout had 300 spells to choose from? Petrifing enemies? Poison, disease, hold, charm, enemies with invisibilty and the rest?

No, I didn't think so.

 

You could kill a guy in full power armour by throwing a lit road flare in his eye slit, that alone trumps any pansy ass spells,just kidding love the spells but flare to the eyes is more fun,

you could plant explosives on people or inject them with drugs so they overdose and die, or wait for them to become addicts so they get penalties to combat.

 

Melting people with plasma or lighting them on fire and watching them dance around were all pricelessly fun to me and casting petrify can hardly match up.

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Since we're discussing RPGCodex attack pieces, here's a "review"(excuse me, attack piece) on Baldurs Gate 1 in the style of the original review.

--------------------------------------------------------

Baldurs Gate 1 is an epic disaster of a game.  The problems start with the wretched character creation system.  You roll random dice over and over and over to get the best start.  This is pathetic game design - and it is absolutely crucial for your game.  The class system is byzantine and cumbersome, with all sort of hidden rules about which class can do what.  There are linked sets of important abilities, called feats, with virtually no information on what they do.  There are traps in character design all over the place - you can gimp yourself with the wrong choices.  Once the game starts, you're put into a hideous tutorial area where you do stupid things like fighting illusionary warriors in a basement and doing fetch quests like a golden retriever.  Your first companion has the most annoying voice that I've ever had the displeasure to hear. 

 

You start out weak as a kitten, able to be taken out by house pets.  If you choose a spell caster you can do one or two things before you need to take a nap. You'll be taking lots of naps.  You can be in the middle of an epic fight and then just plop down for eight hours without consequence - or spend a couple of game days riding back to an inn, knock back a couple of pints, and then jump back like nothing happened.  You'll spend half your time playing inventory tetris.  You'll spend the other half of your time searching for a point - why would I care about some stupid iron shortage?

 

(to match the original, I'd need about 10,000 more words attacking it as garbage; you get the idea...)

------------------------------------------------------

 

Would you say that this "has valid points"?  Because the things in it, a lot of them anyhow, are basically true - and irrelevant to the fact that it's actually a very fun game.  But, codex style, you're supposed to be defensive and talk about how it's really only mediocre - instead of telling the troll to go back under their bridge...

Edited by Ohioastro
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Systems -

There are plenty of perks that let you increase accuracy. It's obviously intended to be the most limited part of the system, which is fine. Most of the system's problems in encouraging a tank-and-spank approach come from lousy AI.

Skills are clearly useful throughout the game. In particular, Lore is massively useful, Survival makes buffs last longer.

 

Combat - 

Encounter design is a weak spot, though the game has some highlights in this regard (the Temple of Eothas or the endgame bounties, for instance) and a lot of dungeons fail to present you with a crowning challenge and meaningful reward at the end. I like engagement, it's a shame that the AI never presents a challenge with all the options it has.

In PoE you have tons of disables for anyone who breaks past the frontlines. Don't really get what that's about. Endurance isn't rewarding sloppiness, it's addressing the IE problem of having no middleground between total success and either time-consuming reload or time-consuming resurrection spells and re-equipping your party member. Per encounter abilities are precisely the sort of acknowledgement of developments in RPGs since the IE games that the summary deplores the lack of...

Yes, a lot of Wizard buffs are terrible or counterintuitive in their applications. Wizard spells are often very good. Buffs in general are valuable; the change from prebuffing is problematic but I understand why it was in there.

Writing - I really liked a lot of the writing and background stuff. That said,

'Supposedly, the problem with the awakening is that your character is going crazier with every day. But the game never, in any way, enforces that.' 

YES! CORRECT! This is the biggest problem with the plot's presentation.

It's not likely to stick with me in the same way as Planescape: Torment and I agree that the main plot has problems and the general reactivity is kinda sloppy. On how we went from Alpha Protocol to this... Alpha Protocol was a semi-linear set of missions with a much smaller number of actors. It also, for all its brilliance, had some really pronounced problems in design and the dossiers.

On the technical bit - savegame times and bugs have largely been ironed out, at least for me. Reviewer's take on POTD difficulty really doesn't correspond to my own experience of it.

Summary - I think PoE clearly acknowledges and builds on a lot of the new things in CRPGs since BG. The self-created backstory of Kotor 2, Bioware's stronghold/camp, talking to companions yourself rather than waiting for them to chat to you, Crafting, mass item gathering. Hell, Endurance is obviously taking the modern RPG idea that having companions die, get resurrected and be re-equipped, having not received any XP from the fight, is not tremendously fun or meaningful. Not all of these are perfectly executed but most of them are better than previous iterations of it.

Overall: some insightful and valid points, a lot of pretending not to understand things. Is the game PST + IWD + BG 2? Nope. Does it have good points from each of them... probably.

Edited by Blovski

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I play BG:EE all the time.

 

So do my sons.

 

I did the Black Pits (great stuff), and I regularly do runs through the game itself.

 

I don't consider the Solve the Iron Ore Crisis quest a "fed ex" quest.  Nor the Rescue my Witch, Bandits, Bandits 2, etc.  Especially some of the side quests (Bassilius, freeing the woman from the stone, etc).

 

There is a huge variety of quests to do - and yes, some are fed ex.

 

As for "boring dungeons"...I really hope this is hyperbole!

 

What great dungeon do you have in PoE?!  Do you mean The Endless Paths?  You compare that with Durkon's Tower?!?  Hooboy.

 

I for example love the Cloakwood -> Bandits (Mine) series of interconnected quests/areas.  Oh right...PoE doesn't have anything like that.  What a pity.  And how things affect other quests later in the game...often much later.

 

I suppose we are going to have to do a point-to-point comparison *sigh*

 

The Black Pits are additional content that EE added in the game nearly 20 years after its initial release, so I would not count it is bonus points when you compare PoE to BG. Durlag's Tower is not actually part original BG, but Tales of Sword coast expansion.  And also BG: EE  uses much improved engine BG2's engine which is quite bit more robust that what BG offered and most of BG's bugs have been fixed in BG:EE.

 

EDIT: So lets see 20 years in future when PoE: EE comes out if it can compare with BG: EE   :biggrin:

Edited by Elerond
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It's pretty funny that the same people who come in and sneer at us for daring to like a new game...get all defensive when you point out any problem at all with the decades-old games that they like.  If I was them, I might ponder the Golden Rule.

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Any non-isometric Fallout deserves to be shat on. Now, Obsidian is not to blame in this case, Bethesda is, and Obsidian did really well with what they had. But that's still ****.

 

 

This is absurd as it implies isometric gameplay is somehow objectively superior to other styles of gameplay. It's not.

 

 

I like to think that the Fallout = Isometric gameplay crowd would take a Fallout novel and turn it 45° on its X-Axis and 35.264° on the Y-Axis before reading, so that they were ensured the novel was good. :biggrin:

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Any non-isometric Fallout deserves to be shat on. Now, Obsidian is not to blame in this case, Bethesda is, and Obsidian did really well with what they had. But that's still ****.

 

 

This is absurd as it implies isometric gameplay is somehow objectively superior to other styles of gameplay. It's not.

 

 

I like to think that the Fallout = Isometric gameplay crowd would take a Fallout novel and turn it 45° on its X-Axis and 35.264° on the Y-Axis before reading, so that they were ensured the novel was good. :biggrin:

 

 

What you tell me that everybody don't do this? How is this possible? I am extremely shocked from this revelation, I think my world view starts to crumble and I descent towards darkness.... No that can't be true I am always right so you must be lying to me... yes that it is you are just kidding, I see that smiley face and understood how you try to troll us... My world has been balanced again to be in safe 45° - 35.264° - so all is well.

 

 

:dancing:

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Baldurs Gate 1 is an epic disaster of a game

No it's not. I dislike Pillars of Eternity but I wouldn't call it an epic disaster of a game. But I'm not surprised that you think that BG1 is because you love the Engagement system wink.png

 

The problems start with the wretched character creation system.  You roll random dice over and over and over to get the best start.  This is pathetic game design - and it is absolutely crucial for your game.

There are quite a few people that enjoy rolling for stats. The design for the game was to emulate AD&D 2E. In AD&D 2E you rolled for stats. Goal succeeded.

 

The class system is byzantine and cumbersome, with all sort of hidden rules about which class can do what.  There are linked sets of important abilities, called feats, with virtually no information on what they do.

Is it? Would you say that the Gold Box games have a byzantine and cumbersome class system? Because the class system was AD&D 2E. There were a fair few things missing though which the IWDs and BG2 fixed. The rules were not hidden if you knew AD&D 2E. Once again, your problem appears to be with the AD&D 2E ruleset itself.

 

There are traps in character design all over the place - you can gimp yourself with the wrong choices.

Yes you can. However, not everyone cares about this. Josh Sawyer might be on a holy crusade to try and remove trap choices as options in games but not everyone cares to. The only trap choices to be made are in attribute selection, really.

 

Once the game starts, you're put into a hideous tutorial area where you do stupid things like fighting illusionary warriors in a basement and doing fetch quests like a golden retriever.  Your first companion has the most annoying voice that I've ever had the displeasure to hear.

The tutorial is optional, and you don't have to speak to the Green Tutorial Monks either. I never do. When I play Candlekeep I kill Shank and Carbos, return Phyldia's book. Loot the second floor of the Inn. Get the potion for Nessie the Cow. Fight Jondalar and Erik. Kill the Rats for Reevor. Return Tethtoril's scroll. Fetch Hull's Long Sword and buy Fuller his bolts.

 

All of that makes sense to me, you seem like some sort of Candlekeep Errand Boy/Girl before you leave.

 

You start out weak as a kitten, able to be taken out by house pets.

Really? The first area includes bears, and you can kill them straight off the bat. You likely can't beat a Bear in Pillars of Eternity with two level one characters with starting gear only.

 

If you choose a spell caster you can do one or two things before you need to take a nap. You'll be taking lots of naps.

Yes, until you find the Ring of Wizardry (or Ring of Holiness) original.gif And no, you do not have to take lots of naps. Who says you have to rest when you run out of spells? I never do. Is this what makes people rest spam? I use my spells wisely and the rest of the time I attack with weapons. Up in ya grill with my 19 Thaco Quarterstaff attacks or in the back with a Sling. Sling Wizard isn't terrible, either.

 

You can be in the middle of an epic fight and then just plop down for eight hours without consequence - or spend a couple of game days riding back to an inn, knock back a couple of pints, and then jump back like nothing happened.

Umm, you can do this in Pillars of Eternity? You're not even interrupted if you rest 20 feet away from some Ogres as long as you're not in the combat state.

 

You'll spend half your time playing inventory tetris.  You'll spend the other half of your time searching for a point - why would I care about some stupid iron shortage?

No you won't. Don't pick up every crappy item. Pick up the good stuff. Searching for what point? and yeah maybe you don't care about an Iron Shortage, but don't you want to find out why someone has put a bounty on your head? I had more personal motivation in Baldur's Gate 1 and more sense of adventure than I did in Pillars of Eternity.

Edited by Sensuki
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Useful things to take from here on:

 

- Not everyone is going to like your game (which is fine)

- Kickstarter has its pitfalls, and it's not merely one of budget constraints, like why is this game not as epic as epic quest II, not as dungeon crawley as Dungeon Crawler Dale and why are the NPCs not as fleshed out and manyful as in all of those games combined. It's all about the people, as they give you the money in the first place. However, people on occasion ask for what they think they want rather than what they actually want for far too many reasons to discuss

 

 

 

 

 


BG1 is superior to BG2 in all ways except mechanically and, arguably, graphically. The storytelling especially. BG2 has terrible motivations and terrible literary pacing, and drops you in the middle of Athkatla, already knowing the main villain, and with an uninspiring goal. BG1 also has better areas, pacing in terms of relative power levels, better exploration, and, mostly, better quests.

 

 

Sorry, I can't take you seriously if I read something like this. I'd say that both BG1 and BG2 had a pretty weak story, so saying that BG1 was slightly better due to a better pacing is justified. I'm totally okay with that. But saying that BG1 had better quests... really? I mean; really? Name me just one quest that wasn't just "go there, beat **** up" in BG1? Certainly not clearing the endless levels of Nashkel Mines. Or all the pointless dungeons filled with hordes of copy & paste encounters.

 

I can name you dozens of memorable quests in BG2:

The Unseeing Eye, the De'Arnise Keep, the Planar Sphere, Getting the dragon eggs in Ust Natha, the Skinner of the Bridge district, the Umar Hills deaths, etc.

 

Literally every zone of BG2 had at least one memorable, multi-stage optional quest that you will definitely remember in almost every single detail. In comparison, I can't even remember almost any of the sidequests in BG1. Like literally, I played BG1 at least 5 times now and I still struggle remembering the quests.

 

 

QFT.

 

Anyone who says that BG1 had better quests or better dungeons than BG2 or PoE is clearly not talking about BG1 the actually existing game, but rather about BG1 the sugarcoated memory of how playing a fantasy cRPG for the first time as a teenager made them feel (when it had no prior expectations to measure up to).

 

 

 

True about the quests, absolutely. And yet I have replayed BG1 many more times than any other of the IE game (plus the obviously rather oftenly underrated Icewind Dale 1). Whilst it was justified by the plot, the amount of high level content in BG2 on occasion borderlines on the ridiculous (in that extent, it's the opposite of PoE, where there are few if any completely unique OP items that could turn you into God-like), the combat quickly descends into micro-management clickfests even against the most mundane of opponents (it's mostly all routine, by the way - buff, combat, save, buff - and rest and pray for no random encounters whilst doing so in between). The exploration and pseudo open world was ditched in favor of a far more streamlined "fast travel to area of interest/quest immediately" design (and ultimately ditched for something even more linear later on); and the much cherished chapter 2 is basically doing quests and managing castles for as long as you like despite someone close to yours just being captured. On top of that, and I have to admit that this is ultimately it's appeal, it's cramming as much of D&D into a single game as it can, so you're first fighting the legenday Beholders, the even more legendary Killer Bunny Of The Underdark Or Something and finish the job off by finishing The Lord Almighty himself. 

 

It's not that it's a lesser game or anything. But it is different enough designed to the original that each will have its fans and detractors -- on top of that, it didn't break any completel new grounds, as the original did two years prior (D&D had been done before, but not on this scale, sorry Gold Box and SSI). That said, in terms of quest content, there is hardly an equal to this day, and that's not nostalgia. There are various retrospective articles to be found on the web, and they are mostly all about how it was a huge advantage to the team to have all the systems in place and just about pumping concent all day long. Though BG2's quests really aren't as open as some are arguing (not that BG's were in any kind of way) -- what some of the fine folks at Interplay/BI were doing in Fallout a year prior was way bolder in many regards. Which is why I personally don't hold any BG  that dearly that I uber glorify it to be RPG perfection to this day. In the same ways, I hugely enjoyed playing Pillars personally -- but in terms of reacitivity and world design in Wasteland 2 is actually better than that. It'd be far more important if these games, RPGs that (sadly) only work on PCs and thus don't attract that hugely many ways to fund them, would stick around for a while and get the chance and build their own line-age, which I hope they do. inXile has another promising game in the pipeline anyway, and pretty much announced another sequel to another legendary Tale too.

Edited by Sven_
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