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Woah - suddenly, I'm pretty bad


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I'm about 25-30 hours in on my first ever play-through of the game and I think I've started to reach the point where I'm under-experienced (both in game and in how to play).

 

I'm playing a Flame Godlike Fighter with a two-handed weapon (greatsword, etc) and a back-up of a single handed sword and shield.  I currently have Durance, Kana, Eder, Grieving Mother, Sagani and Aloth (currently Kana is in my stronghold doing missions and stuff since I just picked up Eder).

 

I've completed Act 2 and am Level 8 I believe.  However, I'm running into enemies that are whomping me pretty good.

 

For instance, I'm to the Adra Stone Arch in the Persoq quest for Sagani.  You face that one caster, couple dwellers and a beetle or two and I'm getting creamed.  Those Drakes are pretty tough as well.

 

Up to now, I could pretty much just focus-fire all my people and just brute my way through groups.  That's not really happening anymore.  I'm dying quite often.  I also ventured over to the place where that mage is being sieged by the mercs and two of those people pretty much wiped the floor with my group of 6.

 

So, what should I be doing differently?  Is there any way to make my companions use their abilities and the like without my direct intervention?  This constant micro-managing is a huuuuuuuuuge pain in the ass - and it doesn't even work that well.

Edited by CybrSlydr
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So, what should I be doing differently? Is there any way to make my companions use their abilities and the like without my direct intervention? This constant micro-managing is a huuuuuuuuuge pain in the ass - and it doesn't even work that well.

Have you considered lowering the difficult level? This game was made to require a lot of micro-managing.

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So, what should I be doing differently? Is there any way to make my companions use their abilities and the like without my direct intervention? This constant micro-managing is a huuuuuuuuuge pain in the ass - and it doesn't even work that well.

Have you considered lowering the difficult level? This game was made to require a lot of micro-managing.

 

 

Funny you mention that, I'm playing on easy so I could enjoy the story more than worry about that stuff - I thought.  lol

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Funny you mention that, I'm playing on easy so I could enjoy the story more than worry about that stuff - I thought. lol

Oh. Sorry.

 

If it helps, next patch will add a "story time" difficulty, that is like an inverse Path of The Damned, where the enemies are not only less numerous, but weaker, for those who wish only to enjoy the story. Said patch is already available on beta for Steam users.

Edited by DreamWayfarer
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You can do stuff with companion AI. I don't know if it'll help in your case though.

 

Pillars isn't a hard game. It just looks that way. You need to figure out how the mechanics work and start making use of them. You can't brute-force your way through if you don't know what you're doing.

 

  • If you're not doing damage, it's either because you're not scoring enough hits, or you're not getting through damage reduction.
  • Pay attention to the numbers floating above the enemies when targeting them. You want them high and green, not low and red. If they're low and red, you're not hitting enough: use an attack that targets a different defence (spells for example). These will often reduce the other defences so you'll get more hits that way. (Every attack targets one of Deflection, Fortitude, Reflex, or Will.)
  • If the numbers are gold or green but you're still not doing damage, it's getting soaked by the enemy's damage reduction. Fight them a bit and pay attention to the numbers in the box at top left: that'll tell you what the damage reduction is for various types of damage. Switch to a different damage type, use a weapon or talent that gets through damage reduction, use bigger weapons, or use less armour and dual weapons to hit faster and wear them down through a thousand cuts.
  • If you're getting wrecked, figure out why and counter that. 
  • If it's melee damage, boost your Deflection (use shields and items) and Damage Reduction (armour).
  • More likely you're getting hit with some nasty status effect which makes you weak enough to go down quickly. When you start getting hurt, hover over the portrait and look at what status effects are active. Look through your spells to find ways to defend or counter them. Durance for example has a spell that'll defend against or counter every status effect in the game. So for example if you're facing a Drake which has a fear aura, have Durance cast Prayer against Fear.

It's not rocket science; just spend a few minutes looking at what the game's telling you and thinking of a way to counter them, instead of just reaching for the first thing that springs to mind.

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I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

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  • Pay attention to the numbers floating above the enemies when targeting them. You want them high and green, not low and red. If they're low and red, you're not hitting enough

 

Is this a new 3.0 thing?

 

In 2.03, those numbers are read even when I crit and do a lot of damage.

"Time is not your enemy. Forever is."

— Fall-From-Grace, Planescape: Torment

"It's the questions we can't answer that teach us the most. They teach us how to think. If you give a man an answer, all he gains is a little fact. But give him a question, and he'll look for his own answers."

— Kvothe, The Wise Man's Fears

My Deadfire mods: Brilliant Mod | Faster Deadfire | Deadfire Unnerfed | Helwalker Rekke | Permanent Per-Rest Bonuses | PoE Items for Deadfire | No Recyled Icons | Soul Charged Nautilus

 

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  • Pay attention to the numbers floating above the enemies when targeting them. You want them high and green, not low and red. If they're low and red, you're not hitting enough

 

Is this a new 3.0 thing?

 

In 2.03, those numbers are read even when I crit and do a lot of damage.

 

 

Not those numbers. The numbers when you hover over an enemy to target an attack.

I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

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When you find yourself consistently losing battles, you're right to think it is time to reassess your tactics.  PrimeJunta gave some great tips which I hope you will follow.  The main thing I would add is to change up your spell selection.  Many of PoE's best low level spells -- repulsing seal (2) for priests, slicken (1) and Kalakoth's minor blights (3) for wizards, call lightning (3) for druids -- are weak in Baldur's Gate and some Infinity Engine vets mistakenly think the same must be true in PoE.  Or on the other side of the coin, action-RPG types who try PoE often don't think to try zero-damage spells like slicken and repulsing seal because they don't realize how valuable prone/immobilize effects are in PoE.  Good luck! 

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OBS did a great job of making the low level spells consistently useful, particularly the status dealing ones, throughout the game.

 

Thrust of Tattered Veils is good for interrupting casters until your monk, rogue or ranger's pet can get up close and personal  :devil:

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PJ had a great post on reading the game, but I'd like to add some general strategy.

- First, it would help if you explain a little bit more how you're dying.

  • If it's an instant wipe (10 seconds and you're dead) go away from that area and try somewhere else for a while.  You're probably under-leveled and under-geared. 
  • If you send a tank in and he's getting killed and then they wipe up your casters, that calls for more armor and some crowd control spells like slicken, blind (wizard), or confuse and dominate.
  • If they're ignoring your tank that means you could start using stealth to do positioning better ( send the tank in ahead of the rest of the party).  It also probably means you need an off-tank.  Give Kana some heavy armor and a melee weapon.  He'll help mop up the people that get around Eder.
  • If one or two enemies slip around the fighter and kill your squishies, off-tanks still help but you may want to enchant party gear or put them in heavier armor.
  • If fights are really drawn out and they grind your party down, that means you probably need better gear.  Or to lower the armor of the people at the back of your party.  When I'm not paying attention I find that I can collect a lot of gear and forget to equip it.  Also,  by level 8 you most likely have the stuff to enchant your weapon and armor.  Quality enchantments are the most important.  On your characters who use weapons most (probably Sagani and then Eder), kick up the quality of the weapon to the highest possible.  Armor quality enchants are important too.

- Pausing is your friend.  You should play with one hand on the spacebar, so you can stop if it looks like things are going bad.

- Slowmode is your friend.  On PotD I find slowmode as useful as the pause button since fights are brutal, but it still helps a lot on lower difficulty levels.

- Status effects are your friend.  Knockdown is especially powerful.

- Use Grieving Mother to charm or confuse every battle.  On easy mode I would say try every single time.  That's her major class feature.

- Not every mission should be done as soon as you find it, you may want to level by doing some other quests / bounties / or the deep paths.  It is extremely possible to outlevel the game, which may be your speed.

- Kana slowly builds up summons.  These make a big difference.  Kana can also speed up reloading, which helps if he and Grieving Mother are using guns.

- Give all party members weapon specializations in the weapon they use.  Accuracy helps a lot.

- Check out the attributes your enchanted items give.  Resolve helps armor, Perception how much you hit, and Intelligence makes abilities better.  Clothing attribute bonuses don't overlap.  If two piece of clothing give +1 resolve, your character only gets +1 resolve.  If you look at your character sheet and the bonuses next to an item say "surpressed", that means that that item isn't doing anything and would be better on another party member.

 

 

I hope this was helpful.  Good luck!

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