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Motivation after the Level Cap

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To be honest, I disliked BG's and BG2's caps back in the day, and installed cap removers when I became aware of them. I can bring myself to finish the main quest after hitting the cap, and maybe a side quest if it has a really useful item, but much of the incentive to do random side stuff is gone. Because, let's be honest, the side quests with such amazing stories that you simply have to experience them are, well, somewhat rare. So in the end, there's XP and/or items as reasons to do them.


OTOH, if you have a level cap, I'd ideally hit it some time before the end of the main quest, in order to actually use all the cool stuff I've been given. That was a major thing in Planescape:Torment for me - they had all these awesome high-level spells with special cutscenes, but in the majority of cases, I didn't hit the levels necessary to actually cast them until maybe right in the end, when it was somewhat pointless.


The other way to tackle this was maybe BG2:ToB - it was next to impossible to hit the cap (5 mio XP, IIRC) with a full party, but the last levels didn't add something substantial. You got a few HP and maybe another spell slot, but these weren't the things winning the game.

Now, that's possible at the very end, when it doesn't really matter any more. If you have important perks up to level 12 and from then on, only give out minor bonuses, that's not that good, either.


Lose-lose, either way.

Therefore I have sailed the seas and come

To the holy city of Byzantium. -W.B. Yeats


Χριστός ἀνέστη!

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One way around the level cap blues (even if it is a little regimented and metagamey) is to differentiate between systems of vertical and horizontal progression.

Keep vertical progression (HP, skill ranks, total number of equipped talents and ability uses) bound tightly to main quest progression. Let the side quests, bestiary, etc. expand horizontal progression (maybe unlocking extra talents or powers that could be swapped out at rest, bonus spells known, etc.).

Since the horizontal progression component is more about versatility than power, you can leave it essentially unbounded without worrying about trivializing endgame content.

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yeah it did kinda ruin the game for me, I kinda lost interest after that (that and the frustration of spending most time in the loading screens).


I don't get why there is a level cap anyway; part of the enjoyment is improving the characters. It could definitely be handled better (on example would be to increase encounter difiiculty of future encounters based on party level). Seeing the xp reward after quest but not getting anything is definitely a bummer. I like the rpg aspect and the story, pretty much done all the quests but to me level cap is removing one part of that makes  the game  fun.

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I wonder when the mentality changed...


I don't think I ever saw anyone complaining about the cap in Baldur's Gate (2). Leveling was just what happened along the path, it was nothing something to go for.

But then comes around modern ages and no-one seems to play for the game itself, but all for leveling. And once they hit the max (why did you rush to it then people?) they complain about it being required higher.




KOTOR2 has a lvl 50 cap... you never reach it. Also the game's about over when you reach lvl 7, anything over that and you're an unstoppable murder machine. I always hear people complain about it but reading this thread it almost seems a dream come through for some people... 0_o



it´s interesting that i remember it the other way around. I played many RPGs before i encountered Baldurs Gate and it was the first time i encountered a Level Cap (actually it was BG2, i never finished the first part). I never had them in one of the Might & Magic oder Wizardry Games for example.


And Kotor 2 was indeed a dream coming true. No problems with being an unstoppable Killing Machine. I mean, you´re a Jedi, it should not be possible to be put down by some filthy Tusken Raiders :dancing:

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  • 2 months later...

I just wanted to add my personal experience in this matter after i finally found the time to play PoE 1.06.

I had about 80 hours of playtime and i have to say that until this point PoE was one of the best RPGs i have ever played.

A few hours later i reached Twin Elms and hit the level cap shortly after. And the same thing happened
like several times before with capped games. Every piece of motivation i had to solve any sidequests, talk to NPCs or
exploring new areas, died down to a minimum.


Right now i´m considering if i wait for the expansion to see if the included cap raise will fix this
fatal design flaw (i know most people have no problem with this but for me it´s a punch to the face from
the developers), if i use a mod to raise the cap or if i just force my self to play a game that´s just
not fun to play anymore and get it over with.


There are so many Gameplay options you can choose in this game if you want to. But the level cap? No, that one
is forced upon you. And the argument that it would be too easy this way or it break the balance  is also weird because then you
would also have to remove the lower difficulty settings because everything lower than hard is a walk in the park anyway.

Edited by Ickis99
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I noticed leveling was WAY too fast when I got to defiance bay and was seriously over leveled for the content. The IEmod to increase the exp to level by 25% and 50% should have been included in the main game. Then everyone is happy.


Also an option to reduce gold by 25% and 50% should be added. They hand out exp the same way they hand out gold - too much.

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Months later; still don't get it.


You play RPG's for the story mostly, for the game. Leveling is just a means for that... but in itself, utterly substantial. Something could have 0 levels but keep you playing because it's good. And other games offer 80+ levels of utter mediocrity. Did I hear anyone say SW:TOR?




I agree that that is such a stupid idiotic pathetic garbage hateful retarded scumbag evil satanic nazi like term ever created. At least top 5.


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Formerly known as BattleWookiee/BattleCookiee

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Months later; still don't get it.


You play RPG's for the story mostly, for the game. Leveling is just a means for that... but in itself, utterly substantial. Something could have 0 levels but keep you playing because it's good. And other games offer 80+ levels of utter mediocrity. Did I hear anyone say SW:TOR?


Im not sure exactly what you're saying but:


I play for theory crafting, trying out different builds, trying out different combinations of abilities, beating the hardest difficulty, making the most powerful character possible, etc. Leveling too fast just spoils all of that fun.


Pillars has fairly deep combat and character building which is the only reason I bought it in the first place.


If it was like wasteland2, i dont care how good the story is, I would have skipped it.

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