Jump to content

Did PoE lack memorable moments?


Recommended Posts

So not a trash the game thread, as I loved it, however I've been playing through the BG series for the first time since PoE as a result of the SoD release and made the inevitable comparison. Plenty of good points for each game (have to add PoE needs an SCS mod or a far harder baseline PoTD mode) but one thing stood out a little more than most.

 

 

Arriving in Baldur's Gate for the first time

Final Battle of BG

Irenicus encounter on exiting first dungeon in BG2

Irenicus battle at the asylum with the mad wizard army

Final battle in BG2 and Hell

All BG2 Dragon encounters

 

That's a list of the moments that will stick with me the most from the two games. Clearly there aren't any on PoE and I'm wondering if that's a slight failing and if others feel the same?

 

Couple of caveats for the sake of fairness: 1. I was considerably younger when I played the BG series and had far less gaming experience/hadn't seen it all before. 2. The first 10 hours or so of PoE were general awestruck wonder as the game is so beautiful but I'm not counting that. 3. Maybe PoE was intentionally more understated, which is a fair enough design choice, if not one im 100% on board with.

 

Finally, a few standout reasons why from my perspective.

 

  • Sarevok and Irenicus were better villains and I think this is mainly due to them being a bit more prominent in the games as a whole. I was going to say they were better voice acted (and they were fantastic) but Thaos was really well voice acted too, he just had bugger all involvement in the game except for a few specific points in the plot. The consequence of having the rest of the world oblivious to his actions, while interesting, made the main plot feel a little disjointed from the rest of the game. Sarevok and Irenicus were mentioned a lot more throughout as general menaces which added to the experience when you finally toppled them.
  • Memorable chapter end encounters. I didn't mention them in my list above but some of them weren't far off making it, particularly the Iron Throne fights. They were some of the toughest fights in the games, more of a "end level boss" approach. I feel in Pillars the tougher stuff was exclusively the side content so that the game was more accessible, but for me that detracts from the sense of accomplishment that compliments a good climax to a section of the story. Certainly on PoTD I would have expected more, but the humanoid enemy encounters were all walkovers in PoE.
  • Cutscenes. Could be budget to be fair, but who didn't love literally every Irenicus cutscene? In PoE they were done via the text based encounter system - ironically this was one of my favourite things about the game in all other situations - but I think the main story encounters needed a little more drama.
  • Music. Environmental music was brilliant in PoE, some battle themes were pretty good too, but the final battle scenes in BG1&2 felt much more dramatic thanks to individually made tracks, which were amazing.

 

That's it. Just to reiterate, I love the game, but wanted to offer some feedback for the inevitable PoE2.

Edited by ComplyOrDie
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I thought PoE was a great game all things considered and did have some signature moments, with the "hanging tree" and the hearings being two of the most memorable for me.  However, I do think the game sometimes struggled to keep the main character motivated to follow the critical path.  It is unclear for much of the game that you should treat your "gifts" as a disease rather than a blessing; it is unclear for much of the game that the LK is worth stopping; and it is unclear for much of the game that it is even possible to solve the Hollowborn situation let alone that you could potentially be the one to solve it.  Put those things together and it's no wonder most players don't feel a sense of urgency about advancing the over-arching plotline, which I think contributes to a sense that key moments in PoE "feel" less memorable than they "should". 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you ask a hundred people they're going to have pretty different evaluations of what was a 'memorable moment'. The Irenicus cutscene outside his dungeon is fantastic, I personally don't consider the rest special (especially the Sarevok fight, meh). 

 

That said, sure, compared to something like the Myrkul conversation in MOTB, which is an incredible moment, POE I think (1) has a more understated and nuanced tone throughout, and doesn't really go for a lot of melodramatic moments. The text adventures, for example, are fabulous, and some of them have delightful illustrations. They're not 'memorable' in the same way, but that doesn't matter if they have their own qualities.  (2) Thaos is a weak character and can't really deliver moments very well. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

For what it's worth, this doesn't seem like a topic that can be properly discussed in a non-spoilers forum.  It's a worthy enough topic, but any really worth discussion of it would seem to me to be drowning in spoilers.

 

Would it be possible for a mod to move it into the Stories forum, I suppose?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe there were tons. These were memorable moments for me...

 

The First Thaos encounter at the end of the game intro. The machine sucking souls away as Thaos slowly walks away blew me away and locked me in for the rest of the ride. Just like the BG2 dungeon exit cut scene with Jon.

 

Entering Gilded Vale and seeing the hanging tree. That was a WOW moment.

 

My first encounter with Raedric and his whole sickening story of madness. Plus Osyra's cat. Pet Cemetary said What?!

 

Creating Cladiliath was pretty fricking awesome.

 

First encounter with the Drunken Orlan Monk. He wiped the floor with my party like no other.

 

.... Too many others too list....

 

 

And.... last but most certainly not least.

 

The backer memorial to Sir Bel and Kitrax from Sorcerer's Place. Being a long time poster on that site... That one hit home as they both passed away in RL.

 

Love this game.

No matter which fork in the road you take I am certain adventure awaits.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think people give endless credits to some classic games. Nothing can beat nostalgia emotions in any topic. Like OP said when we were young even the opening scene of BG was a talking point for a month, but after living so many years and seen some sh**, reading, etc... Real life experience overcomes the game. It could not create that big importance but a entertainment in life. That doesnt mean as a story It is shallow or generic, only you were not shallow comparing 18 years younger of you . Pillars had plenty of memorable moments aswell. Its a good story with good tense moments I've really enjoyed It kept me entertained but Its not the only big thing in life anymore. 

Edited by ruzen
  • Like 1

Kana - "Sorry. It seems I'm not very good at raising spirits." Kana winces. "That was unintentional."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I didn't find anything memorable about the story (maybe some of Durance and GM's bits were good?), though I at least saw a few bits where it could've gone in a good way. If the writing as whole hadn't ended up being, well, what it was.

 

Glad to put PoE behind us though, and look forward to PoE 2. There were a lot of good parts in PoE, just the...delivery? made the sum less than it's parts.I will say though that there were very few cringe or eye-roll moments (outside the atrocious backer crap, of course). Such moments tend to infest most video games, so while it never hit any highs for me, it at least avoided any real lows.

Edited by Teioh_White
Link to comment
Share on other sites

For me, PoE had quite a lot of memorable moments, though they are not delivered in the same way as BG2 (for which I'm rather glad though I still quite like that game).

 

Here are some of mine (SPOILERS):

 

-The first Thaos encounter is very memorable for me.

-Raedric's quest.

-Maerwald

-The sanitarium soulreading where you find out that Thaos has undermined animancy

-Speaking to the gods in Teir Evron (probably my favorite if I had to single out one moment)

-The final moments of Sagani's quest

-The final moments of Durance's quest

 

That's just a few of them and not even going into the expansions. It's also hard to compare one's reaction to something that wasreleased  around 15 years ago to something released today.

  • Like 2

Listen to my home-made recordings (some original songs, some not): http://www.youtube.c...low=grid&view=0

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Personally I didn't find Sarevok a particularly compelling villain, even at the time. Indeed I didn't find the plot of BG1 that good, though the reveal was pretty cool since I had the FR novel Waterdeep so recognised some of the background (that was the only FR novel I had read at the time, and in retrospect I wish it had remained the only FR novel I ever read).

 

Irenicus on the other hand was excellent. His first dialogue did an excellent job of portraying him as dispassionately evil, the fight in Waukeen's Promenade made it clear that he exceptionally powerful, his voice acting was top notch ("you dare to attack me here, do you even know whom you face? You will suffer, you will ALL suffer!") but what really was his attitude towards the Bhaalspawn: he didn't hate you, he didn't like you, you just had something he wanted, he needed, and so he was pitted against you. You were simply a thing to him you were so beneath him. This made it feel really epic when you finally fight and defeat him.

 

I think Obsidian were going for a similar feeling with Thaos, and they hit some of the marks. Thaos's voice acting is, as the OP says, really good. It's hard to say whether it's as good as Irenicus's since Irenicus's is tied up with all the awesome that is Irenicus, but I think it's comparable. They also did a good job of making it clear that you were a mere nothing to Thaos. I didn't feel that Obsidian managed to make Thaos feel as amazingly powerful as Irenicus. The scene in the Brackenbury Sanitorium came close, but I always found the fight that followed rather easy so it lost some of its impact as a result. What really didn't work for me was the killing of Wolfgrin: I don't know how you would do that scene better, but I just didn't feel like it had enough impact.

 

The other issue I felt lacked with Thaos is that whilst we had a reason (albeit a little bit of a weak one) to be chasing him, he had literally no interest in us. With Irenicus it was two way: he wanted our soul and we wanted to rescue Imoen/unlock our potential. In PoE, if the main character were to simply give up Thaos wouldn't have chased him down: he would have simply executed his plot and that would be that. One imagines that in BG2, had the Bhaalspawn just settled down in Athkatla, eventually Irenicus would have come calling.

 

Hmm... that was a little off topic. To answer the OPs question more directly I'd tend to agree that PoE lacked the really strong "oh wow" moments that BG2 had, but it had plenty of memorable moments.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Aside from both being fantasy party based RPGs, POE and Baldur's Gate have almost nothing in common. There are a few nods to the classic IE games, but that's about it. Pillars isn't an epic but a personal quest. Comparing the villain of an epic to the villain of a personal quest will always result in the epic's villain winning.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wouldn't say that PoE is personal, or at least not more so than BG2. In PoE you foil a plot by an ancient secret organisation, headed up by an essentially immortal super dude, to bring the cast down queen of the gods to her former glory. You start off your quest because of your awakening but I think by the end that's not the reason I was trying to thwart Thaos. In Baldur's Gate 2 you foil a plot by an incredibly powerful mage to take your soul and use it to achieve (demi)godhood. You start off your quest to try to rescue your half sister and/or to find out how to unlock your potential, but by the end that wasn't the reason I cared about thwarting Irenicus.

 

They seem pretty similar in terms of epic vs. personal. Now if we compare PoE to ToB then sure, that's far more epic, but it was an epic level adventure and honestly the villain(s) were nowhere near as awesome as Irenicus. The IWD games were by definition less personal given the lack of inter party banter and the bigger focus on dungeons. I don't think IWD was particularly epic, IWD was towards the end.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In BG2, you are captured for unknown reasons by a foe who kills/damages/tortures your friends and openly says he won't stop experimenting on you until he has what he needs.  That gives you a pretty good reason to go after him no matter what alignment you may have.

 

In PoE, you indirectly receive strange powers from a possible foe whose plans are unclear and who doesn't even appear to notice you at the time the powers are given.  That isn't exactly the stuff from which epic antagonists are made, and it's the presence of an epic antagonist that at least in part fosters epic moments like those with Irenicus. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In PoE, you indirectly receive strange powers from a possible foe whose plans are unclear and who doesn't even appear to notice you at the time the powers are given.  That isn't exactly the stuff from which epic antagonists are made, and it's the presence of an epic antagonist that at least in part fosters epic moments like those with Irenicus. 

 

Yeah, I'd agree that that that seems to be roughly what sets Thaos apart from Irenicus.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Od Nua's not so "Endless" Path should have been 35 levels, not 15. Or atleast multiple branching paths, so even if it's technically 15 levels, there are more than that in total (ie. level 13a, level 13b, etc.). For a take on the traditional dungeon crawler, rogue-lite dungeon experience, it kinda felt short, levels 11 and 12 felt like they were rushed in fact.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That would be a full length game inside a full length game, all of which would be developed on a budget several times smaller than other major RPGs. 

 

They should never have promised so many levels for Od Nua. It is clear that on release, POE would have benefited from the same content applied to fewer maps, which would have allowed them to actually have some choice & consequences and richly packed areas.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@ Sir Tigranes, I'm actually expecting they will do the same thing in Tyranny; they will hype up a dungeon as a feature of the game Tyranny, but after you've played it, it would feel lacking and rushed, since it's just a "mini-game" within a full length game, like Od Nua's "labyrinth". :rolleyes:

 

Never again I tell you. Once Tyranny gets released, the first thing I'll ask is "How's the rogue-lite dungeon like? Did they give it the same treatment as Od Nua's 15 levels?" No, I won't ask that here, I'll ask on that website where hate is the norm. If you can please them, then it's a good sign obs did a good job with Tyranny.

Edited by EtherGun
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My most memorable moments in the game were:

Sagani and Durance's quest.

Pallegina's dialogue with Hylea.

Eder's pet reactions.

The Xaurip sacrifice pit, conversation with the fampyr, Od Nua, and Ardra dragon in Endless Paths.

The Deathlike bandit in Magran's fork.

The house on fire in WM1.

Galvino's workshop and those ****ing exploding animats (I went at level 6 on potd).

Raedric's Hold (and pt 2).

The hanging corpse outside my stronghold, also the giant hand in the ground.

Mindcontrolling Thaos' goons the first time I fought him.

Edited by anameforobsidian
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

PoE for me has quite a few memorable quests none of them are part of main story ( well some of them are, like Galawains Quest but its not part of critical path because you can choose other gods and skip this quest ) ,

Durance is the only one memorable companion i can see why kids hating on him and crying for a priestess companion ;D job well done by MCA

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I kind of agree that there wasn't any particularly memorable moment in PoE, but then I personally don't find the ones you listed from BG1/2 all that special either and can't think of any. I consider both PoE and the BG series good as a whole though so that's not really a critism.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, none of those moments are anything I'd ever reflect on with my friends 5+ years down the line. They weren't bad or anything in-game, just not amazing due to the writing style, which seemed very workman-like. Not pretentious or fanfic at all, with no cringe, facepalm, or eye-rolls, which in this new age of Indie and Kickstarter RPGS, is an accomplishment in itself.

Edited by Teioh_White
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think those "memorable" things from BG saga are "memorable" becuase you/we were younger when playing the games and thus have special fond feelings about it. It's simply just nostalgia. If PoE was made 15 yeas ago, and BG was to be released in 2015 you would probably had the same feelings for Pillars today, I wager.

  • Like 3

It would be of small avail to talk of magic in the air...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...