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RPGCodex Review #1 - Hŵrpa Dwrp

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[false]Gods, I find myself agreeing with Volourn.

 

Someone kill me.

 

Oh, how I long for the silence of the lambs.

Edited by WebShaman

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I have almost finished my first run of PoE, and as much as I would like to love it, it's just not so entertaining. I mean, there are no aspects of the game, that makes me go "wow, that is so cool". There are just things that are "ok", and things that I wished were done better. The story is not so thrilling either, combat needs a lot of work, writing is decent, although I began to skip ALL the backers NPC's - they are just such a waste of time, stopped reading that **** after first few hours of the game. 

And most of all, it is NOT similiar to IE games. I mean, the graphics and UI are similiar, but there is just different atmosphere. I have played Icewind dale 2 not so long ago, and man, I had such a better time with that game.

 

I still haven't done the final battle yet, so maybe this will be good.

Edited by Gladiuss8@gmail.com
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If I were the editor at RPG Codex and you write a review so unbalanced that it sounds like a hatchet job...you will never write another review for my publication again.

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If I were the editor at RPG Codex and you write a review so unbalanced that it sounds like a hatchet job...you will never write another review for my publication again.

Perhaps if you pay Darth Roxor some money he might change his review to a positive one like what happens in professional games journalism emo-emot-smug.gif

Edited by Sensuki
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Gotta agree with Matt516 here, this review just seems like a rant and a troll.

 

I'm been vocal about my dislikes with this game, but it's not nearly Obsidian's worst of all time. Did this guy play Dungeon Siege 3 at all?

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Just read the full review, still haven't played the game. Besides the tone, that some people will maybe find patronizing but I find just funny, most of the time he's basing his critiques in easily verifiable points (copypasted enemies, autopilot combat due to excessive xp gains, character progression mostly affected by leveling and not equally by items or player choices).

So I think that at least he doesn't write like pulling things out of his ass, it would be easy to play the game looking for the points he's making and deciding if the facts on which he's supporting his reasoning are true or not. So I can't decide if it's a fair review because I haven't verified its facts, but I don't think it's a rant either.

However, leaving the review aside, what strikes me as curious is why this review needed to be announced in its own thread here, instead of getting just added via bump to some review aggregation thread that was probably made during release. Maybe it's because it's a Codex review (that being seen as somehow granting it more relevance); or maybe this thread is just a petty revenge against Obsidian for not scraping the engagement system (whose flaws are really there, I'm not denying that).

I think it would be convenient that, to avoid any suspicion about the real motivation being the latter, the next Codex review, if it happened to be positive, was posted in its own thread too, that way receiving the same visibility as this one.

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Well, it's pretty apparent there are things in the game that he did not quite "get", both from his review and earlier posts on the Codex.

 

I guess he could have written a more serious review but then... Worse than DS3? That's just trolling for attention. If that doesn't mean he's into ARPGs in which case you can just disregard his opinion.

 

In any case it's typical Codex to glorify their own village idiots, and going to edgy extremes in general (I must confess I'm not entirely innocent of the latter). I'm honestly surprised they did not put up an even crazier review, saying that PoE is worse than Lionheart or Brotherhood of Steel, or saying that the game was completely ruined because a certain poem was replaced, or whatever.

 

Actually people are completely wrong when they say that this is an "elitist" review, and that the Codex is THAT old-school. There's a 160 pages long thread about modding Skyrim and 40% of Codexers believe F:NV is Obsidian's best game, a more popular choice than MotB, KotOR 2 or PoE. Action RPGs and FPS hybrids such as Deus Ex, VtM:B and F:NV occupy high places in the Codex best games of all times-list (where Dark Souls is ranked above Wizardry 7...). Those rankings are fairly close to mainstream and I wouldn't be surprised to find a similar list in PC Gamer or something.

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"Well, overkill is my middle name. And my last name. And all of my other names as well!"

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I've gone back and read some of this review again and despite my initial reaction that it was just a huge rant, there are quite a few things I agree with.

 

His problems with engagement and the combat system itself are spot on for me. I also agree with him that in the 50+ hours I've played, I have not really encountered any unique, interesting combat situations that really stand out. This game truly does throw mobs of "trash" enemies at you for dozens of hours and you repeat the same basic tactics over and over again.

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All hail Codexia.

 

I like the game personally but the bottom line is that the review isn't wrong. However, prepare for a lot of anti Codex posts in this thread. original.gif

I agree with most of the points/conlusions that Darth Roxor makes, but as I said in the OP I agree with them for sometimes completely different reasons. He does get some mechanical details wrong and I disagree with many of the things he says, but he winds up largely at the same conclusion as I do.

 

It's definitely not a troll review. The tone of the review is colorfully antagonistic, but I don't have a problem with that, and all of his reviews are like that although not all of them are negative.

I also think he's overblown some of his gripes, but damn, I agree in principle with a lot of what he says.

These three posts pretty much sums it all up for me. The review is melodramatic, antagonistic and unfair, but it's not really wrong, and when it's arguably wrong, the conclusions are still principally right.

 

The mega-dungeon is disappointing and I'm surprised at the level of effort put in by Obsidian. Some of the levels are so small it's basically a corridor to the next level with maybe a room off to the side.

I think all the Kickstarter content is extremely lacking, except the Inns - but the game needed Inns, after all. The NPC:s are utterly jarring and terrible, the memorials is a study in literary travesty, and the backer items, all seemingly cramped into a single merchant, even lacks unique descriptions.

 

The fact that the "Endless Paths" are a complete meh shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone by the time they've finished half of them. It sadly doesn't even compare to Durlag's Tower or Watcher's Keep in terms of puzzles, size or memorability.

 

 

I agree with (easily) a third of this review, is just the holier-than-thou tone that makes my gorge rise.

Yeah, pretty much sums it up this article/review/rant for me too.

 

Pillars is not even close to perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but my main problem with it was the combat encounters feeling bland.  The Stronghold being not necessary is true but didn't bother me at all since it wasn't a part of the main gameplay itself, imo. I just ignored it/didn't care.

 

In workday week terms, it's like the early part is Friday (woot!), the middle part is Sun. night/Monday (sigh, back to work) and the last part/end is Wed night (closer to Friday!). Pillars never reaches any major heights but in the end all of the things I did like mitigated the things I didn't like, enough to equal something that I overall like in spite of a few glaring weaknesses. I still wish the combat had been more attention-holding however. It really does drag things down in the middle.

 

Oh, also, this. ^

 

Except, as a person better than most, I do not mind the holier-than-thou tone. It might be entirely deserved, after all. The things.. *sniff* we endure with the peasantry.. *whipes a tear*

 

 

laughing.gif

 

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I found myself agreeing with most of the points but rolling my eyes with how blown out of proportion they are.

Its the Codex, they'll go over the top but the points they raise aren't wrong.

 

PoE combat is samey and items feel bland. Engagement is ****-tier.

Balance is out of whack. In every case.

The writing is bland for long stretches of the game.

Exploration isn't rewarding and maps feel small.

Cutting the stronghold and Od Nua in favor of more areas/better existing dungeons would have been good.

Stronghold is bad. Really bad.

Reactivity is crap. I ****ed over that crime family and nothing happened.

Art is pretty and music is good. VA is bad and overused.

 

Overall mods may be able to shape it up and it very well may lead to a BG2 tier sequel, but overall PoE isn't very impressive. Not the worst Obsidian game(that would be DS3), but certainly not in league with NWN2 expansions or New Vegas. Would not back a sequel without some shakeups(MCA lead writer) or without a fantastic showing from the expansion.

 

So, your complaint basically boils down to that it's a Pilot Episode for an entirely new setting and gameplay ruleset. Congrats. But seriously, most of your complaints truly boil down to teething problems. Expecting that they wouldn't occur is a rather ludicrous position to take. Although I would like to point out that I have yet to play any CRPG within the first 3-4 generations where the AI wasn't complete crap. Good AI is HARD.


"You know, there's more to being an evil despot than getting cake whenever you want it"

 

"If that's what you think, you're DOING IT WRONG."

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.. This review is the Codex at its worst. And I say that not in a "the Codex is terrible" sense, but in a "this is the kind of thing that gives the Codex a bad name" sense.

 

Indeed. I suppose many people there enjoy this "bad name", because they believe it gives them some sort of importance and/or credibility among gamers.

This whole review and especially its hyperbolic conclusion are exactly what I was expecting from them. Sad to be proven right once more about the Codex.


Edér, I am using WhatsApp!

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I've gone back and read some of this review again and despite my initial reaction that it was just a huge rant, there are quite a few things I agree with.

 

His problems with engagement and the combat system itself are spot on for me. I also agree with him that in the 50+ hours I've played, I have not really encountered any unique, interesting combat situations that really stand out. This game truly does throw mobs of "trash" enemies at you for dozens of hours and you repeat the same basic tactics over and over again.

I mentioned this in another thread some time ago, and I'll mention it again here.

 

Remember *those* enemies in *that* game? You know which enemies I'm talking about. You know which game.

  • I'm talking about the trolls of Baldur's Gate 2, that frustrated everyone the first time they met them, unless you already knew you needed fire or acid.
  • I'm talking about the Pyramid Heads of Silent Hill and the freakish nurses.
  • I'm talking about the Cliff Racers of Morrowind that were just ridiculously broken.
  • I'm talking about the gibberlings that just rushed you in Baldur's Gate, after you set foot outside of Candlekeep.
  • I'm talking about the Cazadores of Fallout: New Vegas, until you learned to snipe those bastards before they got close.
  • I'm talking about even creepers of friggin' Minecraft - kill them before they get close and explode or **** too late.
There's so many games where you, when you talk to anyone that's played those games, everyone goes "Oh, have you met ... ?" or "Damn, remember ... ?" or "I did it this way ...". Pillars of Eternity just.. doesn't have that. It doesn't take any special tactic to deal with any opponent, and rarely does anything work much better than something else. No enemies are immune to anything special; Oozes could've been interesting if completely immune to blind or prone, for example, maybe even paralyze but nope. Trolls doesn't take flame or corrode to kill.

 

The only thing that I can think of is "Remember those shadows right at the beginning? Those were mildly annoying." end of conversation.

 

Why? Because hard counters are boring. Apparently. And the enemies doesn't feel like they do anything special, then, either. You can't do anything special to them, they can't do anything special to you. Except cheat with infinite spells and abilities, enjoy your Stuck.

 

So, your complaint basically boils down to that it's a Pilot Episode for an entirely new setting and gameplay ruleset. Congrats. But seriously, most of your complaints truly boil down to teething problems. Expecting that they wouldn't occur is a rather ludicrous position to take. Although I would like to point out that I have yet to play any CRPG within the first 3-4 generations where the AI wasn't complete crap. Good AI is HARD.

Pilot episode or teething problems, doesn't matter. Valid criticism is valid criticism. A lot of us knows that Pillars is possibly a good start, and may grow into something fantastic, but realize that in order for it to grow, it's issues need to be discussed, and as fans, we don't just discuss, we obsess.

 

It is known.

Edited by Luckmann
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I am not sure that I will say is relevant since I haven't played Pillars yet, but at least theorically it should be relevant; I mean, the Codexian review is a bit harsh, sure, but it isn't time for some restoraration pack or unfinished business to get an old game improved, is it?

 

Pillars wasn't release more than a month ago, only few weeks, the expansions haven't yet, and Obsidian is working day and day on it (and I am sure that Obsidian is looking at balance reviews for instance as precious feedback, for Pillars and the following games obviously, and especially for tabletop RPG and cardgame if they are still in the works).

 

I don't think that it isn't fair from the Codex to be so harsh to Pillars and Obsidian (again, I haven't played the game yet, so I could be too optimistic), and it isn't fair to be so harsh against the Codex too (as it is personal opinion). At least, that passionate debate can lead to more thinking about the game and the following, and some improvements.

 

- "A beginning is a very delicate time".

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I hate to be this blunt, but...

 

That review is ****. It is. Obsidian's "worst game of all time"? Really???

 

There are plenty of problems with PoE. Plenty. I'm not denying that. But it is a very good game nonetheless. This isn't a review, it's a rant. It's rife with misunderstandings of basic game mechanics, which makes all his criticisms of the mechanics suspect at best.. and the fact that he couldn't think of a single thing to praise other than the aesthetics and the music is silly. This is a troll review at best. It's very clear that the reviewer went into it looking to take every single complaint he had about the game and magnify it to the point of ridiculousness.

 

Sorry, Sensuki... I've gotta disagree with you 100% here. This review is the Codex at its worst. And I say that not in a "the Codex is terrible" sense, but in a "this is the kind of thing that gives the Codex a bad name" sense.

 

This, 100%.

 

Yes, the review has a point in most of it's critics. However, a review is not about pointing out flaws and exaggerating them to absurdity. It's about a critical discourse of bad and good points.

The fact that the only positive note in the entire review is about aesthetics says a lot. I mean, come on, really?

 

Yes, PoE has it's flaws, but none of them is completely broken or unfixable ... in fact, most of it's major gameplay issues can be fixed either by simply adjusting some numbers (like giving enemies more diverse stats or immunities; mind you that due to the way defenses work, an immunity can basicly be soft-coded by just adding +100 to the particular effect resistance ... there's no "natural 20"'s in the game that override resistances), or simply by revisiting some of it's content.

In fact, the devs already started doing this, as we can see by the undocumented AI change of 1.04 that suddenly makes NPCs run for your squishies as soon as your tank gets knocked prone.

 

None of the aspects the review mentions are as bad as described. Things like the stronghold, the dungeons, the stats. They are functional and work. In fact, I'm pretty sure nobody who isn't overly obsessed with the game would ever think that they are broken. Again, nothing that a balancing patch and possible expansion/DLC can not fix.

 

Some issues mentioned also clearly show a lack of interest in the specific field. For example, when he complained about the roster of mage spells being useless. I tried many of the supposedly useless spells and found them pretty interesting. In fact, I experimented with a tank wizard build already and found it surprisingly good.

 

 

On a side note: if I had to review this review, I'd give it a 3/10 simply because the complete lack of a real discussion and pointing out of the many good sides of the game. It's just plain ranting with no constructive substance.

 

TL:DR:

Reviewer has a point, but it's nowhere as bad as he makes it sound. The game is not a turd. It just lacks some polish.

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I think all the Kickstarter content is extremely lacking, except the Inns - but the game needed Inns, after all. The NPC:s are utterly jarring and terrible, the memorials is a study in literary travesty, and the backer items, all seemingly cramped into a single merchant, even lacks unique descriptions.

 

The fact that the "Endless Paths" are a complete meh shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone by the time they've finished half of them. It sadly doesn't even compare to Durlag's Tower or Watcher's Keep in terms of puzzles, size or memorability.

 

I was looking for my epic item that I submitted and was a little dumbfounded when it came up.

 

 

 

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dYFkVGz.jpg

 

epRnBAg.jpg

 

 

 

I didn't have to go find it. The item found me. LOL.

 

And I find the endless paths quite jarring at times. It feels like a mish-mash of random levels that don't have any significance to the level that preceded it. There might be something you have to go down and go back, but most of them don't have anything to do with each other. Also, when you've managed to get past a hard enemy on one level and then get to the next level and find it's a plain old corridor to the next level with maybe a couple of easy trash mobs, I'm like wtf. And the levels I mentioned with a corridor with a room to the side. Just look at these.

 

Level 10

http://guides.gamepressure.com/pillarsofeternity/guide.asp?ID=29964

 

I was going to go back to that room [2] as I didn't bother with it initially. I did open the door and have a look at the enemies and thought, ugh. Seriously. More of the same old stuff. I did make a note in my journal to go back, but I feel pretty meh about it. I couldn't believe when I saw this. So I can basically walk down the corridor, deal with some trash mobs and go to the next level.

 

Level 11

http://guides.gamepressure.com/pillarsofeternity/guide.asp?ID=29965

 

You can ignore most of the enemies. Just a simple climb and you're at the end of the level. 

 

Level 14

http://guides.gamepressure.com/pillarsofeternity/guide.asp?ID=29968

 

One room.  :blink:  Why not add some rooms and hallways, maybe a puzzle, and make the last room the boss fight for that level? Nope, we'll forego all that and go straight to the boss for level 14. Oh, and I talked my way past it. No stat requirements.

 

I was expecting certain levels to be grouped together into a theme like Diablo. The first four were the same (Cathedral), the next four took on another theme (Catacombs), same with the next four (Caves) and the last four (Hell). Well in this case it was 15 levels instead of 16, but still. And I can't think of any item I've come across that stuck out and thought woohoo, awesome.

Edited by Hiro Protagonist II
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This might be the worst review I have ever seen lol. Many other reviewers disagree.

 

- "This is literally the worst Obsidian game I’ve played to date. That’s right, I even had more fun with Dungeon Siege 3"

 

- "Which brings us to what possibly surprised and disappointed me the most in PoE – the general writing quality is

simply underwhelming."

 

- "This bad encounter design, however, is not the sole stinker that makes the combat simply a chore"

 

Couldn't disagree anymore if I tried with comments like that, glad most fans and reviewers love it. The game has its issues but the good far outweighs the bad. There is one or two things I agree with but the other 90% I don't agree with at all.

Edited by kozzy
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I've gone back and read some of this review again and despite my initial reaction that it was just a huge rant, there are quite a few things I agree with.

 

His problems with engagement and the combat system itself are spot on for me. I also agree with him that in the 50+ hours I've played, I have not really encountered any unique, interesting combat situations that really stand out. This game truly does throw mobs of "trash" enemies at you for dozens of hours and you repeat the same basic tactics over and over again.

I mentioned this in another thread some time ago, and I'll mention it again here.

 

Remember *those* enemies in *that* game? You know which enemies I'm talking about. You know which game.

  • I'm talking about the trolls of Baldur's Gate 2, that frustrated everyone the first time they met them, unless you already knew you needed fire or acid.

 

 

will leave the rest, but we thought that were funny... 'cause nobody who had ever played pnp d&d, or most any d&d crpg game, ever would have been stymied by bg2 trolls... which, btw, were in iwd (a black isle game) first outta the ie games.

 

unforeseeable immunities or defenses is jackarse stoopid.  is the same idiocy that makes folks nostalgic 'bout the tomb o' horrors crapfest from old d&d.  so far we has encountered  more reasonable tactical and strategic decision making in poe than in any o' the ie games, or in all put together.  Reasonable.  we had played d&d as far back as the white box edition, and when bg2 were released, we were having ZERO concern with trolls, but the mage spell defense layering were a complete different issue.  dispel magic didn't dispel all magic protections after all.  to be effective in bg2 mage combats, we had to know which spells could lower which defenses and which layers had to be peeled back first, and our pnp experience and previous crpg experience gave us little initial insight.  what the hell, how many o' us old pnp vets ever had characters in the +10 level range? so to learn the nuances o' bg2 mage combat we resorted to trial and error or read a guide.  we had fun with bg2, but our initial approach to bg2 mage combat were not the least bit tactical or strategic.  

 

more amusing is that in bg1 we didn't need any tactics save for one: haste + ranged weapons + mobs o' monster summons = win.  if we got bored with a long and tedious battle, we could throw in a few fireballs (or easily purchased arrows o' detonation) as well as hitting enemies with grease or perhaps entangle.  every battle.  don't let those rose-hued glasses blind you, eh?

 

in poe we is able, after a brief bit o' pain, to discern what foes is resistant to and what their will, fort, reflex and deflection ratings is.  one encounter or two gives us a good chance to make rational decisions about how to defeat such foes.  we can build parties ahead o' time to make full use o' and to  be maximizing the abilities o' our fellow party members and we know that if we is Reasonably prepared, we won't be blindsided by a sudden confrontation with a bg2 demi-lich that, oh, btw, has different immunities than the ad&d variety.  

 

trolls?  

 

*snort*

 

even so, your nostalgia is oddly misplaced as it calls to mind a horribly anachronistic approach that thankfully were abandoned along with ad&d insta kills, inexplicable druid xp progressions and nonsensical attribute bonuses. 

 

HA! Good Fun!

Edited by Gromnir
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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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Wait, people still care about the Codex? 

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"That rabbit's dynamite!" - King Arthur, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail

"Space is big, really big." - Douglas Adams

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40% of Codexers believe F:NV is Obsidian's best game, a more popular choice than MotB, KotOR 2

Older Obsidian games are in no way more "oldschool" than F:NV, only thing carrying them being their characters and stories.

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I agree with the review in general, the game is certainly lacking in many aspects, but I'm not sure that the problem lies solely on bad creative decisions. In devs defense, I think that with what meager kickstarter budget Obsidian had, they've managed to do a pretty decent job, all sacrifices considered, the game still came out as quite enjoyable. So I hope that devs will gather enough coin to improve the game and make a sequel that will be a proper BG2 spiritual successor we've all been waiting for.

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I find this review lacking objectivity, which just show how corrupt gaming media is these days. In my opinion we need much better journalistic standards and we should all boycott this media outlet until they fix their review standards...

 

Isn't that the line we should use these days or did that already drop out from fashion?

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