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A bit of a disappointment but at the same time a great RPG

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Interesting question. Historically speaking, based on works by AD&D and mythical writers, magic has always been more powerful (or overkill) and more impressive (its magical after all) than mundane real life.

 

In previous RPG games (pen & paper, or computer games), magic was balanced with a weak physical trait of the magic user, especially in low class levels. We can see such an example from the AD&D pen & paper version of Dragonlance and the character Raistlin, who is a total “basket case” for about most of his life, up until his magic becomes powerful.

 

In computer games, magic plays a vital role in the graphical effects that immerse and impress the player.

 

Unfortunately, PoE fails in this aspect. It fails to impress because magic is too limited and uninteresting, there are not enough magic user variations, the characters are not powerful enough in later levels and the spells are quite unremarkable for what we call “magic”. I believe, that they should have been “magical”, like in other games (Baldurs Gate and/or Neverwinter Nights for example).

 

The balance (or unbalance) in PoE falls mostly to meele users.

 

 

You obviously haven't tested POE very much. Plenty of spells are borderline broken.

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I have to say I found mages to easily be some of the most effective characters in the game.  Even without getting into the stacking status effect game (which is critical and they excel at), slicken and fan of flames are extremely effective at the first level.  Fireball and Wall of Flame aren't as ubiquitous, but they're still pretty useful blunt damage dealers.  And Kalakoth's minor blights is a pretty common damage dealer.  That's with the fact that wands are pretty good by themselves.

 

Some of the higher level spells were gamebreaking last time I used them (adragan).  And they do have unmatched access to status effects, to the point that some spells like Fetid Caress make enemies weak against repeated applications of the same spells.  

 

But the Wizard is best when stacking effects so you're consistently getting hits and crits instead of grazes, which makes the whole party much, much stronger.

Don't forget the gishy spells. Summon a weapon, pop a couple self-buffs (Deleterious Alacrity of Motion, anyone?), and move over Elric of Melniboné.


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I put at least 100 hours into it. It's just not what I wanted it to be and that's okay

Damn straight, pilgrim! Although I admit that I love playing mages more than anything. If I couldn't have fun with a mage in my party (at least a joinable NPC) I would not have had as much fun with the game.

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Also there are magic users other than wizards you know (not that wizards aren't tied for strongest class in the game),

 

Some of the priest buffs are kind of ridiculous. Crowns + Devotions for the Faithful especially, and then when you are done turning your party members into gods you can throw down Storm of Holy Fire and burn everything on the screen.

Edited by limaxophobiacq

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Not only that, my impronounceable named friend, but that one heal over time spell at second level. I personally think that's one of the most badassed spells in the game. My thinking is perhaps slightly diminished at the moment, but it gives the priest a couple of truly vital casts of buffs or some other spell without worrying about keeping another NPC on his or her feet. It's not glamorous or exciting, but I think that's one of the best spells of the game.


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Mate there is not a single word on my post where I claimed that magic should not be "epic". What I said is that if magic becomes powerfull this will result in players loosing interest in other classes(and that's bad for a game) and most importantly powerfull magic as I said earlier must take it's toll on the caster and the world alike so feel free to implement it but you must pay for it and I believe that's one of the "epic" aspects of magic to begin with after all nothing comes for free.

 

Magic can be "epic" however "epic" magic cannot in my opinion be available to any spellcaster exactly because it's supposed to be so epic. So while the lore of magic can be enriched and should be enriched in PoE by a lot no really a lot, magic practitioners on the other hand which consists of the average player character should be kept at a medium leash with a promise of some epicness in the very high end of the spectrum... Again if you read my previous post carefully you'll realize what I truly mean I even suggested a few ways to make magic more interesting and a bit close to how I felt about it in the dnd system, some metamagic feats or perhaps spell interactions would be interesting and might add some flavor because quite frankly to me as well, after having played wizard as main several times... magic the way it's implemented so far is a bit boring if not a bit wow-ish or dota-ish in an obviously bad way but again this is not a trivial matter and after all the devs got to do what is best for the overall gaming experience there is always a compromise to be made.

Which is totally not true. If it was true, everyone would have played with all caster parties in IE game and that was not happening. I did one all mage party play and it was slower than when having a mixed party. 

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Wait, does someone think spells are -weak- in this, or rather that just a complaint about how they're implemented in gameplay? I can't imagine the former, as spells are plenty OP in this game, much like BG, just in a different manner. If it's implementation, I don't see it, but could be an issue. Seems pretty standard IE system, really.

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In my opinion the caster classes in PoE are both overpowered and boring. Not enough to make my dislike them, but not what I expect from them either. Most spells are just damage or buffing. Nothing interesting or tricky. In a world with gunpowder I dont need a caster to create a fireball. Magic does not necessarily have to be "epic", in my opinion magic is gaining great power from simple things. Illusions, charming, that kind of stuff. Two things, that I associate with mages: Specialized and untouchable. The warrior-mage type IMHO should stay a curiosity.

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Wait, does someone think spells are -weak- in this, or rather that just a complaint about how they're implemented in gameplay? I can't imagine the former, as spells are plenty OP in this game, much like BG, just in a different manner. If it's implementation, I don't see it, but could be an issue. Seems pretty standard IE system, really.

Spells are boring and strong in a boring way. Spells give noticeable debuffs to enemies and help finish combat faster in PoE but they are implemented in a bad way that makes them seem bad. 

 

In IE games in early game you have Sleep, Hold Person or Horror. All 3 spells let you finish combat faster but it was not through just reducing some enemy defenses but through changing the battlefield. Closest PoE has at low levels is Knockdown. 

In IE you have Magic Missile which was your dependable spell, PoE has Missiles of magic that just give a bit more accuracy. Magic Missile in IE has multiple purpose: it always hit, it did force damage which almost nobody was immune to and it was cast fast and you could interrupt enemy casting with it. I did low damage as a negative but you always had most lvl 1 spell slots so you could have many of them .

PoE magic Missiles do nothing else but what 10 other spells in PoE do. PoE is full of same spells with a bit different flavor that at best change around the amount of numbers they change on enemy defenses while in IE games spells had different mechanics and changed how the game played.

Being blinded meant no longer being able to target single target spells, while being invisible meant none could target you directly. 

Mirror Image didn't just give some deflection bonus but actually changed mechanics and gave you a chance to hit the caster or image. 

 

PoE took easy way out with spells when compared with IE, it is low effort game and it shows. I hope they overhaul the spell system for PoE 2. 

Edited by archangel979
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I felt the same way about the magic at first, having come from the baldur's gate games, but after a while it gets better. Priest have really good spells later on and druids have amazing area affect spells.

 

The wizards spells have nice magical weapons but i find a lot of the area affect spells unuseable as they are just cones or bolts or area effect spells that also affect allies. If some of these would affect foes only the wizard spells would be a lot more useful. But you can eventually learn to move your characters around and get some of these spells off. I like the mooring spell... attach that to an enemy and run around moving the beam part over his pals!

 

The parasitic staff is also nice, especially at low level. It makes your wizard a killing machine. Things like fireballs are a bit dissapointing damage-wise.

 

I haven't seen any bugs but I think the ?? by the creatures means that you don't know. I think your characters learn more about the creatures the more you encounter them. You can look in the bestiary about what you know of different creatures.

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Ah, simalcrum on a kensai/thief in bg, improved haste, timestop and assasination brings back good memories :) Being amazed at how fast liches can wipe your party and how unfair the Kangaxx fight was weirdly enough also bring back good memories (now compare these fights to the lich in PoE :p). Gotta agree with the op, it seems magic is kinda limited in this game, surely to bring it in line with the rest of the balance. Part of the appeal, though, is to see how hard one can break the game while meeting more and more unfair challenges on the way. But, lets not forget that was high level combat. PoE 2 might, if it's planned as a continuation of PoE 1, ditch the balance and let players go totaly bonkers :D

Edited by SamHam
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Spells are boring and strong in a boring way. Spells give noticeable debuffs to enemies and help finish combat faster in PoE but they are implemented in a bad way that makes them seem bad. 

 

In IE games you have Sleep, Hold Person or Horror. All 3 spells let you finish combat faster but it was not through just reducing some enemy defenses but through changing the battlefield. Closest PoE has at low levels is Knockdown. 

In IE you have Magic Missile which was your dependable spell, PoE has Missiles of magic that just give a bit more accuracy. Magic Missile in IE has multiple purpose: it always hit, it did force damage which almost nobody was immune to and it was cast fast and you could interrupt enemy casting with it. I did low damage as a negative but you always had most lvl 1 spell slots so you could have many of them .

PoE magic Missiles do nothing else but what 10 other spells in PoE do. PoE is full of same spells with a bit different flavor that at best change around the amount of numbers they change on enemy defenses while in IE games spells had different mechanics and changed how the game played.

Being blinded meant no longer being able to target single target spells, while being invisible meant none could target you directly. 

Mirror Image didn't just give some deflection bonus but actually changed mechanics and gave you a chance to hit the caster or image. 

 

PoE took easy way out with spells when compared with IE, it is low effort game and it shows. I hope they overhaul the spell system for PoE 2.

 

That is exactly what I meant, but couldn't say that well.


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Wait, does someone think spells are -weak- in this, or rather that just a complaint about how they're implemented in gameplay? I can't imagine the former, as spells are plenty OP in this game, much like BG, just in a different manner. If it's implementation, I don't see it, but could be an issue. Seems pretty standard IE system, really.

Spells are boring and strong in a boring way. Spells give noticeable debuffs to enemies and help finish combat faster in PoE but they are implemented in a bad way that makes them seem bad. 

 

In IE games you have Sleep, Hold Person or Horror. All 3 spells let you finish combat faster but it was not through just reducing some enemy defenses but through changing the battlefield. Closest PoE has at low levels is Knockdown. 

In IE you have Magic Missile which was your dependable spell, PoE has Missiles of magic that just give a bit more accuracy. Magic Missile in IE has multiple purpose: it always hit, it did force damage which almost nobody was immune to and it was cast fast and you could interrupt enemy casting with it. I did low damage as a negative but you always had most lvl 1 spell slots so you could have many of them .

PoE magic Missiles do nothing else but what 10 other spells in PoE do. PoE is full of same spells with a bit different flavor that at best change around the amount of numbers they change on enemy defenses while in IE games spells had different mechanics and changed how the game played.

Being blinded meant no longer being able to target single target spells, while being invisible meant none could target you directly. 

Mirror Image didn't just give some deflection bonus but actually changed mechanics and gave you a chance to hit the caster or image. 

 

PoE took easy way out with spells when compared with IE, it is low effort game and it shows. I hope they overhaul the spell system for PoE 2. 

 

 

'Every other spell has it's own entire system' I not really very elegant design, and D&D rules except for 4th edition can best be described as a glorious mess.

 

I think PoE in general strikes a good balance at beeing something between 4e and other editions of dnd (more so than 5e does).

 

Sleep and Hold person also have equivalents other than spells that inflict prone. Stuck, Hobbled, Stunned, and Paralyze all do something other than lowering defenses or accuracy, as does Confusion, and Horror effects in IE were such a pain having to hunt down fleeing enemies I didn't think anyone used them.

 

The thing magic missile does where it always does a little bit of damage can be done in PoE with any spell that does Raw damage.

 

AD&D 2e (the system in the IE games) is not really a system like anyone would actually set out to design, it is a collection of disjointed mechanics accumulated over the lifespan of D&D. PoE on the other hand is a more consciously designed system were thought was put in beforehand into what kind of effects one would want in the system, supporting them in the mechanics, and then putting those effects under different spells, instead of over years comming up new spells with new effects and then inventing new mechanics for each of them.

Edited by limaxophobiacq

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I've seen that complaint about Magic Missile before...has somebody been reading the Something Awful forums? That guy overstated his case, though.

 

Unlike most other wizard spells, PoE's Minoletta's Missiles spells launch multiple projectiles which hit separately in rapid succession; in theory, wherever fast attacks are useful, they're even more useful. PoE also has an interruption mechanic, which could possibly use some tweaking to make it more attractive. It's true that the missiles don't always hit, but I think it's a good thing that PoE is saving "always hitting" as a feature for high level abilities in a sequel.

 

So basically, I think the spell is okay, but it could use some context (encounter design, tweaks, etc) to makes its advantages more obvious. And multiple quick long range blasts should have advantages. Adding more Mirror Image-type statuses that change based on number of hits, along with enemies that use them, would be helpful here.

Edited by Infinitron
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The IE games certainly had some very powerful spells. Most late game spells were epic in scope, and effect. Since PoE is more of a mid range adventure, and even thou the "spell levels" go high, it isn't that high level in comparison. So max level wizards in PoE shouldn't be Elminster epic.

The IE spells weren't very innovative. Honestly, I find that PoE has more complexity in it's spell arsenal. To me atleast, the IE games had a few must use spells, which made wizards very strong compared to other classes in the late game. The combat was hardly epic thou, it was formulistic and repetitive. 

Edited by TheisEjsing

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Adding more Mirror Image-type statuses that change based on number of hits, along with enemies that use them, would be helpful here.

That's a good idea.

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Wait, does someone think spells are -weak- in this, or rather that just a complaint about how they're implemented in gameplay? I can't imagine the former, as spells are plenty OP in this game, much like BG, just in a different manner. If it's implementation, I don't see it, but could be an issue. Seems pretty standard IE system, really.

Spells are boring and strong in a boring way. Spells give noticeable debuffs to enemies and help finish combat faster in PoE but they are implemented in a bad way that makes them seem bad. 

 

In IE games you have Sleep, Hold Person or Horror. All 3 spells let you finish combat faster but it was not through just reducing some enemy defenses but through changing the battlefield. Closest PoE has at low levels is Knockdown. 

In IE you have Magic Missile which was your dependable spell, PoE has Missiles of magic that just give a bit more accuracy. Magic Missile in IE has multiple purpose: it always hit, it did force damage which almost nobody was immune to and it was cast fast and you could interrupt enemy casting with it. I did low damage as a negative but you always had most lvl 1 spell slots so you could have many of them .

PoE magic Missiles do nothing else but what 10 other spells in PoE do. PoE is full of same spells with a bit different flavor that at best change around the amount of numbers they change on enemy defenses while in IE games spells had different mechanics and changed how the game played.

Being blinded meant no longer being able to target single target spells, while being invisible meant none could target you directly. 

Mirror Image didn't just give some deflection bonus but actually changed mechanics and gave you a chance to hit the caster or image. 

 

PoE took easy way out with spells when compared with IE, it is low effort game and it shows. I hope they overhaul the spell system for PoE 2. 

 

 

'Every other spell has it's own entire system' I not really very elegant design, and D&D rules except for 4th edition can best be described as a glorious mess.

 

I think PoE in general strikes a good balance at beeing something between 4e and other editions of dnd (more so than 5e does).

 

Sleep and Hold person also have equivalents other than spells that inflict prone. Stuck, Hobbled, Stunned, and Paralyze all do something other than lowering defenses or accuracy, as does Confusion, and Horror effects in IE were such a pain having to hunt down fleeing enemies I didn't think anyone used them.

 

The thing magic missile does where it always does a little bit of damage can be done in PoE with any spell that does Raw damage.

 

AD&D 2e (the system in the IE games) is not really a system like anyone would actually set out to design, it is a collection of disjointed mechanics accumulated over the lifespan of D&D. PoE on the other hand is a more consciously designed system were thought was put in beforehand into what kind of effects one would want in the system, supporting them in the mechanics, and then putting those effects under different spells, instead of over years comming up new spells with new effects and then inventing new mechanics for each of them.

 

Elegant design is a bad design direction, interesting design is a good one. And PoE with its "elegant" design skipped on interesting design. 

4e design also failed badly as a result of trying to make it "elegant". Although due to turn based, even that is better than what PoE has with the way 4e added Blooded and different movement abilities.

 

Stuck, Hobbled and Stunned are not like Sleep or Horror. IE also had entangled and stunned as well. It also had paralyzed and charmed and dominated and suggested and confused. All were better than what PoE has mostly due to those that binded you basically gave you 100% hit chance which made those rare spell slots useful. You could also remove them all from affected ally while spells that give bonues and half duration vs Confused and Charmed in PoE don't work anymore on affected allies. More casualties of low effort (or not enough dev time which comes out the same). 

 

Raw damage means little if spells don't autohit, this is another of the victims of "elegant" design. MM being able to damage most creatures was only part of its uniqueness (and was cause for its low damage). Its being able to hit automatically gave it counterspells like Shield or Magic Sphere line of spells (well they protected vs whole levels but often MM suffered the most as being only low level spell that was useful in 95% of the game). 

 

I does not matter how one system became or another, the end result is all that matters and end result is way in favor of IE games. Also even newer versions of D&D spells are still better than what PoE has, D&D designers understood why those spells worked, what made them unique and interesting and what not to change. 

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The IE games certainly had some very powerful spells. Most late game spells were epic in scope, and effect. Since PoE is more of a mid range adventure, and even thou the "spell levels" go high, it isn't that high level in comparison. So max level wizards in PoE shouldn't be Elminster epic.

 

The IE spells weren't very innovative. Honestly, I find that PoE has more complexity in it's spell arsenal. To me atleast, the IE games had a few must use spells, which made wizards very strong compared to other classes in the late game. The combat was hardly epic thou, it was formulistic and repetitive. 

Not very innovative? Please tell me of these innovative spells that other games were full off, especially games that came out within 5 years of IE games?

 

Also you didn't need to get to super high levels to have access to cool spells, each spell level had a few that works very well on enemies for that level of adventurers. But I agree the best ones (Spell Sequencers and Contingency) were at higher levels. One of the best reason why these spells were good was that enemy used them and they used them well. In PoE enemy casters are more or less useless. 

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Elegant design is a bad design direction

Well that's a new one. I sort of wish I stopped reading right there.

 

More casualties of low effort (or not enough dev time which comes out the same).

Elegant solutions are actually much more difficult than interesting solutions. Anyone can come up with an idea, but implementing it in such a way that it's balanced and interacts properly with the rest is far more difficult. Edited by Fenixp
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You certainly seem to have made up your mind to what kind of system you prefer, but please stop calling the one you don't like a sign of "low effort".

 

Designing spells with little thought for balance and just making up a new mechanics for every spell rather than making a coherent system that encompasses all of them is not a sign of hard design work. Also, the people actually making the IE games did none of that (IMO questionable) work, it was already done for them in AD&D, which was an evolution of years of work by many writers over the years since 1e.

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 All were better than what PoE has mostly due to those that binded you basically gave you 100% hit chance which made those rare spell slots useful. You could also remove them all from affected ally while spells that give bonues and half duration vs Confused and Charmed in PoE don't work anymore on affected allies. More casualties of low effort (or not enough dev time which comes out the same). 

 

 

Not giving you 100% hit chance (which also isn't really true, you will practically always hit a paralyzed enemy in PoE) doesn't make a spell more 'interesting', just more powerfull, and no one can dispute that PoE spells are powerfull enough.

Edited by limaxophobiacq

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If someone truly personally attacks you or breaks the forum guidelines in some clearly offensive way, you should always feel free to report a post. However, the brevity of an answer is not proof, in and of itself, of trolling. In fact, while I haven't read every single sentence, this thread seems a pretty good example of folks having wildly different views and expressing themselves vigorously without crossing over into outright personal attacks. A member disagreeing with you, however terse or short, is simply not a reportable offense. Folks are free to make good and bad arguments on behalf of their convictions and, if you guys are like me, you probably have at least a smidge of both. /public service announcement

 

I actually typed out a long response, but now that I've had to go all moderator, I don't want to appear to take sides. :Cant's bemused grin icon:


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 All were better than what PoE has mostly due to those that binded you basically gave you 100% hit chance which made those rare spell slots useful. You could also remove them all from affected ally while spells that give bonues and half duration vs Confused and Charmed in PoE don't work anymore on affected allies. More casualties of low effort (or not enough dev time which comes out the same). 

 

 

Not giving you 100% hit chance (which also isn't really true, you will practically always hit a paralyzed enemy in PoE) doesn't make a spell more 'interesting', just more powerfull, and no one can dispute that PoE spells are powerfull enough.

 

No, it makes it mechanically different. It is used for different situation and gives different options. That makes it more interesting, not necessarily more powerful. MM in IE games does weak damage past a few levels but due to its other strengths it is often useful.

 

 

Elegant design is a bad design direction

Well that's a new one. I sort of wish I stopped reading right there.

 

More casualties of low effort (or not enough dev time which comes out the same).

Elegant solutions are actually much more difficult than interesting solutions. Anyone can come up with an idea, but implementing it in such a way that it's balanced and interacts properly with the rest is far more difficult.

 

Elegant does not mean interesting. Elegant means elegant. If I have to choose one, I always choose interesting. Spells in PoE are elegant but not very interesting. I already explained why, go read it again if your got problems understanding.

 

And nobody is forcing you to read anything. Or reply. I don't care either way. 

You certainly seem to have made up your mind to what kind of system you prefer, but please stop calling the one you don't like a sign of "low effort".

 

Designing spells with little thought for balance and just making up a new mechanics for every spell rather than making a coherent system that encompasses all of them is not a sign of hard design work. Also, the people actually making the IE games did none of that (IMO questionable) work, it was already done for them in AD&D, which was an evolution of years of work by many writers over the years since 1e.

I can call it whatever I want as it is my opinion and how I see it and feel about it. How about you dont' tell me how to express myself? 

 

IE games (and D&D) are proof of interesting design done well. PoE is proof of low effort boring spells. 

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Elegant design is a bad design direction, interesting design is a good one. And PoE with its "elegant" design skipped on interesting design. 

I'm pretty sure that was a fabricated "best practice" spinoff that totally butchers real advice from real designers.

 

Some better quotes:

 

"The best software designs are ingeniously simple. They are elegant. Great software designers strip away all unnecessary complexity, hiding unavoidable complexity behind well-chosen abstractions."

 

"The word elegant, in general, is an adjective meaning of fine quality. Refinement and simplicity are implied, rather than fussiness, or ostentation."

 

 

The idea that "interesting design is good" makes absolutely no sense, since someone who has no idea how to design anything at all can find even the most terrible of designs to be "interesting." In this context, the word "interesting" can simply be replaced with "ignorant" and the word "elegant" can be replaced with the word "quality."

 

In which case we can see why that original advice was so terrible:

"Quality design is a bad design choice, ignorant design is a good one."

 

  :w00t:

 

Also, some good links for Video Game design:

 

"7 sins of bad video game design"

https://blogs.windows.com/devices/2012/10/30/the-7-sins-of-bad-video-game-design/

 

"What makes a good game"

http://serc.carleton.edu/introgeo/games/goodgame.html

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