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Modern British English is not really any more similar to Medieval English than modern American English, though. Some older features were better preserved in American English, actually (and some others in British, they're just different modern branches that diverged from the same source). And if it was actual Medieval English, it wouldn't be understandable to the majority of players, as the pronunciation was vastly different.

Edited by Ausir

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And if it was actual Medieval English, it wouldn't be understandable to the majority of players, as the pronunciation was vastly different.

It's not just archaic forms of English that can be hard to understand.

 

Some time ago (don't ask) I was watching a French TV programme with my French friends, the presenter was interviewing a guy from the Deep South in English, I could not understand him and had to read the French subtitles…

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Modern British English is not really any more similar to Medieval English than modern American English, though. Some older features were better preserved in American English, actually (and some others in British, they're just different modern branches that diverged from the same source). And if it was actual Medieval English, it wouldn't be understandable to the majority of players, as the pronunciation was vastly different.

I agree, it's just a perception thing though. English accents just "sound" old, at least to a lot of Americans.

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Just toggle to take the joinable NPCs from level one and I honestly don't think there's a problem. The game, at PotD difficulty, is not so burdensome, even at early levels, that you can't succeed. I have all the joinable companions with whom I've made contact and we do just fine. However, the only exception is that I really hate not finding everything. So, I always try to make my conversation skills on my main best, but something has to give and I need high mechanics on someone, so I did create an adventurer because you can't really get max mechanics on anyone else that makes any sense until too late for my tastes.

 

That, and here's where I admit something shameful, weird, and kind of pathetic, but my main character is named after my wife and I created a thief NPC with my name so we could adventure 'together.' I know I know. It's just sad, but I like it that way.

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bother?

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I can't stand Durance [...] He's misogynistic and gross [...]

I love [... ] Hiravias.

 

WAT


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

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Just toggle to take the joinable NPCs from level one and I honestly don't think there's a problem. The game, at PotD difficulty, is not so burdensome, even at early levels, that you can't succeed. I have all the joinable companions with whom I've made contact and we do just fine. However, the only exception is that I really hate not finding everything. So, I always try to make my conversation skills on my main best, but something has to give and I need high mechanics on someone, so I did create an adventurer because you can't really get max mechanics on anyone else that makes any sense until too late for my tastes.

 

That, and here's where I admit something shameful, weird, and kind of pathetic, but my main character is named after my wife and I created a thief NPC with my name so we could adventure 'together.' I know I know. It's just sad, but I like it that way.

 

Doesn't sound sad to me at all, though if I was going to do it, I'd use alternate spellings just to make it look a little more like a fantasy setting. 

 

For example, my current PC Rogue is named Alastyr (i.e. Alastair). (I just like the way it sounded.)

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Eder's backstory went very well with the Saint's War lore I read on the wiki before game released. GM's lore was supposed to be linked to one critical plot arc, but it felt disconnected because nobody else would banter with her, she's invisible almost. In a game like Pillars, it doesn't work very well because the design of the main character and the critical story plot wasn't supposed to be heavily linked to the companions. Very different from Planescape Torment, where the companions were like part of the whole story arc to begin with.

 

GM interceded for the player on one quest, using her cipher abilities. Not much of that happening anywhere else for anyone.

 

Carrie Patel's designs are good. Hiravias was pretty funny. Durance was like that "evil cleric" which never made any sense in AD and D crpg settings lacking the DM/player interplay of board games, but now does. Not having companions in would probably make it difficult to read into a person's personality and backstory. Since they aren't heavily tied to main quests, you sort of have to imagine it on your own. The short stories by Patel, did a good job of describing motivations and development. Sadly, it doesn't seem like the game focused much on developing the traits of various companions. Mechanically, they develop no different than artificially created characters. There's no unique ability or power they gain in game due to their quest, that differentiates them. Hiravas doesn't get a new spiritshift nor an extra use of his druid shapeshift. Aloth doesn't get anything. It's probably due to the top design philosophy that a player should be able to play the game solo or with any party they want. It means that any special flavor or taste having to deal with customizing companions, goes to Priority C and below. Cut out. Legendary weapons have customizations, more customizations even. Companion backstories are like lorebooks, basically. Except you can't reread or trigger the banters whenever you feel like it.

 

Patel did Aloth and Sagani, I believe. Chris did Durance and GM, but many of the features were cut. Too much content for C priority companions.

 

As for NPC stat changes, they used to be able to be changed by console. You still can, even without IE Mod, but I'm guessing the save game system they use to balance NPC stat changes notices that your NPCs have "wrong stats" and then fixes them every time you reload.

 

I noticed that the "adventure skits" in White March 1, seemed more involved. No longer an experimental element that was very short previously. It started becoming like an actual mini story, rather than an excuse to go from Point A over this wall to point B. Still a long way to go before they can match half of Japanese VN quality. 

 

Btw, just as an example, a storyline companion that would be critical, although not absolutely necessary, to the main story's plot would have been someone who was in on the player's secret, from the start. In both timelines. Then they would continue on, powering up their abilities, with the Watcher's abilities working in tandem, special cases, with special bonuses, just from interacting with that one person in the party. Then at the end, they would make some interesting choices, with dire consequences, which makes the end game fight easier, harder, more RPish, etc. That kind of content would be Priority A or B, something very close to the content in the Critical Path itself, because it is the Critical Path itself.

The main story would also have differed, before the expansions, if the main character's content was written assuming he had to be a priest of some god. With a concurrent option to temporarily class shift due to other people's souls. Maybe by adding a bunch of those talent powers in per encounter.

 

So because the Pillars npcs can be killed off and nothing critically fails as a result, other than epilogue, there's not as much attachment to them. There's no need for it, it's not designed into the game mechanically. I haven't played through all of White March yet, so perhaps they did something extra there.

Edited by Ymarsakar

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Sadly, it doesn't seem like the game focused much on developing the traits of various companions. Mechanically, they develop no different than artificially created characters. There's no unique ability or power they gain in game due to their quest, that differentiates them. Hiravas doesn't get a new spiritshift nor an extra use of his druid shapeshift. Aloth doesn't get anything. It's probably due to the top design philosophy that a player should be able to play the game solo or with any party they want.

 

You know... I thought this was a missed opportunity. Especially with Durador. His relation with his staff in many of his conversations could have had a unique physical representation as the game progressed. I was sorf of expecting the weapon to reflect his evolution.

 

Maybe at some point that was an option in the development of the game that was discarded. Aloth, Eder and other companions, all have their unique items when you get them.

 

Back on topic, I found out after my first playthough with me and 5 companions on PoTD, that their power is good enough that it doesn't merit a min-max appoach to succeed. And that's with me being the huge noob that I am at this game. You'd also be losing quite a lot of flavor and lore (YMMV, of course) if you went with hirelings. I would recommend going with companions for your first playthrough, at least.

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Sadly, it doesn't seem like the game focused much on developing the traits of various companions. Mechanically, they develop no different than artificially created characters. There's no unique ability or power they gain in game due to their quest, that differentiates them. Hiravas doesn't get a new spiritshift nor an extra use of his druid shapeshift. Aloth doesn't get anything. It's probably due to the top design philosophy that a player should be able to play the game solo or with any party they want.

 

You know... I thought this was a missed opportunity. Especially with Durador. His relation with his staff in many of his conversations could have had a unique physical representation as the game progressed. I was sorf of expecting the weapon to reflect his evolution.

 

Maybe at some point that was an option in the development of the game that was discarded. Aloth, Eder and other companions, all have their unique items when you get them.

 

Back on topic, I found out after my first playthough with me and 5 companions on PoTD, that their power is good enough that it doesn't merit a min-max appoach to succeed. And that's with me being the huge noob that I am at this game. You'd also be losing quite a lot of flavor and lore (YMMV, of course) if you went with hirelings. I would recommend going with companions for your first playthrough, at least.

 

 

Were you hoping for something like Dakkon's black sword that reflected his willpower and current thoughts?

 

Chris AV did a blog post or something about some of the stuff that was cut out of his NPC designs. 

 

INT or Might tends to be the only two stats I want to max out at times, since they seem to give the best bang for buck. The other stats are good too, but item bonuses stack better. For example, 0% recovery attacks/spell use doesn't need 18+ Dex.

 

Some of the new builds listed here by certain commenters, also are more equipment and tough based, not glass cannons. More easy to use with balanced stats. 

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