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Hello fellow players. My current playthrough has been quite satisfying so far, at least damage and role-wise. I've taken the time to explore around quite a bit, and I'm now in defiance bay, level 5. Tried od nua but it's almost impossible starting from second level. Almost 10hrs of play, and still my main character has the "charisma" of a wall. I feel like I'm wandering cluelessly around, and doing errands for this or that peasant. While this may fit the concept of my char, which is a paladin of the kind wayfarers, I find this game to lack any catch at least in this part. No interaction between party members, they just follow, don't have any feeling or anything.. even weapons are plain simple and common in design... the most exotic being my flaming sword found in caed nua..

Anyone feels the same way I do or am I just too exigent?

 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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I guess I way prefer this game to Fallout 4, where you have a prescribed personality more or less and it sucks away player agency.

 

I think the trouble with Pillars is the disposition system, in that a large majority of conversations will be presenting you with every disposition option available regardless of your past choices and so I think this in turn makes the character come across as someone with an indistinct personality (as in, you read through all these choices when they're presented to you, and while it is to provide options in a way it does seem like the character is having all these incongruent ideas running through their head at the same time). I think an adaptive system would be nicer, where if you keep picking Cruel options your opportunity to pick Benevolent becomes less and less.

 

Personally, I never really enjoyed the disposition system and found their to be a lot of logical flaws in it (for example, during The Final Act if you agree to side with Lumdala and then snitch on her in the end you get honest reputation, which is because you are telling the truth about the events that happened, yet you have also lied to Lumdala at the same time) - and more tellingly if you do play on Expert you'll find you just gain a lot of dispositions that you feel have nothing to do with anything you said.

 

Too much of it is way too subjective, like I remember talking to Vithraks in the Endless Paths and getting Diplomatic disposition for no reason I could recognise - I reload (as I was playing a Bleak Walker at the time) and through some quirk I made in the dialogue that I didn't even pick up on (still going non-combat) I didn't get the reputation second time round. I think if I game has to tell you what disposition you're getting from a certain dialogue option, then that's already failed as a concept as the intent of the dialogue should be apparent from the off - and even people on Expert should be able to "get it" without being explicitly told "this is the literal disposition you will get".

 

For me, I really enjoyed the Fallout: New Vegas system where it was attribute, skill and faction reputation based only - no need for spurious dispositions. Within those confines, you actually play to dispositions more organically as you aren't trying to fish for them - you answer in ways you think your character would rather than playing to a stereotype. For example, many of my characters were calculating mercenary types, but when they were thrust with others into the grim and hopeless situation of Dead Money they often acted more compassionate to their fellows as they were all in the same miserable boat together. In that way, there was a nuanced idea of a character, someone who reacts based on circumstance and not solely "well my character is cruel so I've got to be a **** in every conversation."

 

However, I mainly play these games for the setting, and in Pillars I think it was quite rich. Overall, the Watcher was way better to play than the restrictive Sole Survivor in Fallout 4, but a far cry from the Courier in Fallout: NV - and I think the main reason why was the disposition system. I guess if you're looking for a more character driven experience there's always other games you can try, when I'm being prescribed a character I prefer really story driven games like BioShock Infinite.

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I agree on the part of the dispositions, you're perfectly right. Would like to get a personality and stick with it during the game. In fact, it's most unlikely that a benevolent character turns out cruel for no apparent reason, so the most desirable way to handle this concept would be, as you said, making wrong dispositions progressively disappear.

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 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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I was playing this afternoon... despite all good things that this game has.... I just can't stand that sensation of clueless exploration. Defiance bay is big. All you have to do is simply talk. Know a guy, he gives you errand, you do it, reward. This is what ruined many good Rpgs... I need some info on how the game will proceed. After 10+ hrs of game, I still haven't understood what I'm looking for... I just know I seek info on my Watcher condition.... is that all? Nothing more?

 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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Well, do you want spoilers? I recommend you to move on with main plot because there is something bigger than personal story at all. It is like a tree - from trunk to treetop. White March has same scheme but much better made.

 

I hardly suggest not dive into Defiance Bay then. Try only look at three factions in the city - they are important for plot - Knights of the Crucible (they are in First Fires), Doemenels (Brackenbury) and the Dozen (Copperlane). But go with main plot. 

 

For disposition I suggest choosing two of them, they can shape your character pretty nicely (my Eothasian was passionate/benevolent, it has some nice impact on people). Try to think how is your character? How their past affect them? Or don't? How they react to things? There is meaningful difference in reactions between honest and deceptive dispositions. 

 

Exploration as exploration. Some people give us quests. Some of them have some impact, some of them have not. They are really good and sometimes interlock with main plot. But be aware of combat. That's not Planescape: Torment or adventure game. Combat is really important same as exploration. Of course you can try to ignore it but in my opinion Defiance Bay is not worth of it.  

 

Well game has its flawes but it's worthy to give it one chance at least.

Edited by White Phoenix
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Main plot has scalling. Od Nua is challenging and optional content. You only need to go to level one to Maerwald. Then you have to go to Defiance Bay to find Woedica's temple. It's under Copperlane in catacombs. If it's too hard for you try Story Time - it's out with 3.0 version patch and next. Enemies are weakier, status effects are nerfed as you are 'overpowered'. Tested it in solo run. And what's more you can always change difficulty later :)

Edited by White Phoenix
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Mmmkay... listen, since you've been so kind thus far... I feel my dwarven paladin could be improved but I don't know how... he's tanky, he's got the sword against spirits... but I feel he's not got... personality... is there any dwarven stuff... or... paladin-y stuff I can get?

 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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Yes, in White March you have awesome soulbound two handed sword + unique soulbound breastplate later or some very good one handed sword. What is it? Check it yourself ;) For paladin I suggest heavy armor like brigantine, plate armor or breastplate. Two handed weapon (estoc for example is superb) or weapon + shield (like mace, sabre or sword). Heavy armor with two handed weapon slows character but gives solid protection and damage that's why some points in dexterity would be good. In  my gameplay I have Pallegina (she's paladin companion). She fights with two handed sword but I give her shield + mace and plate armor later + soulbound sword in March. In vanilla game there is some minor stuff like cape, boots only for paladin. There are no racial items.

 

Paladin is not so hard. Priest is more complicated, especially if you want to build them for melee.

 

Your hero has no personality because you create it during game by dispositions and choices.

 

Remember, you are only on the beginning (five level). A lot of things before you. I think the key to the good gameplay is knowing game's mechanics well. If you learn it's not so difficult.

Edited by White Phoenix
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Yes I know I'm at the very start, it's just I expected the paladin or priest to be more... charismatic. I found instead that the paladin sounds just like a fighter with some different powers and a specific attitude to keep in dialogues. The priest which I made (dwarf, eothas) was still good to play but a lot squishier... I wanted to be the undead slayer but ended up with a hybrid character that did nothing special.

 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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Priest is for buffing and debuffing enemies + healing. If build well they can be good killing machines but not tank. On higher levels get more nice offensive spells. It's one of powerful classes in the game now besides druid and wizard.

 

Paladin is 'limited warrior priest'. They are leaders what means they are to protect their allies and curse their enemies. Paladin is more tanky but less challenging from priest. Paladin has also high level abillity to destroy spirits. And soulbound two handed sword can destroy vessel --> undead.

 

Fighter is fighter. A lot of abilities to prone enemies, endurance in fight and so on. Very limited abilites of buffing and healing (nearly 0%).

 

Remember it's not D&D if you think in such way.

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To make any character, especially a Paladin, more immersive turn off the dialogue descriptors.

 

If not you'll probably find yourself looking for the exact response you need - benevolent and passionate and not read anything else or at least not consider anything else. With the descriptors turned off you'll need to read all of them and choose what you think best fits. For this I find Kind Wayfarer the best, the key is to avoid any negative responses which are cruel and deceitful. Its easy to avoid deceitful just always tell the straight up truth, if you are infiltrating undercover and someone asks tell them you are undercover and deal with the consequences. Doing this I still ended up with max benevolent and passionate but also had max aggressive as it felt similar to passionate. I ended up as an avenging force of justice and still never had any negative cruel or deceitful points.

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I've seen it.. it's in WM2... far far away from where I am... 

 

Paladins are leader yes... but according to wikia, priests also are. 

But while paladin cures all companions upon killing, priests can burn vessels and do greater damage if build mid-range PLUS cure... so I'm kinda reconsidering the thing... 

Furthermore, it seems to me that, while I AM wayfarer, noone ever tells me anything about it... It has come clear to me now, that PoE is Cipher-oriented and in second place Priest-oriented, if you want to RP.

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 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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As I remember Calisca's sister has some dialog for Wayfarers. It's true POE has no huge reactivity except for ciphers. When I played first time I was very upset with that but for now I ended game with 4 Watchers :)

 

Making concept of my characters helped me a lot plus White March expansion.

Edited by White Phoenix
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Yes, Aufra has a dialogue... but no different result... you just say to her you'll help.... that's the big deal...:(

 

What do you mean making concept? I know I want to be a dwarf cleric or anyway pious devotee... I was also thinking of giving him a scepter... plus nobleman.... 

 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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Many unique dialog works as you said. There is no unique solution of quest (rearly rarly, mainly for cipher  ;( ). Well dwarf cleric with clergyman background (Aedyr only) fits the best - it is natural extension of your 'priesthood'. Devotee falls in with passionate personality trait mainly, sometimes benevolent and agressive  (that's for jerks). 

 

Reactivity is in big part cosmetic in POE. Sad but true. White March tries to do something with that in some points for some classes. I wish there had been priest god or paladin order's specific quest. It could have done justice for our grief.

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Yes, that's what I intended... no quest for paladins... no specific class quests.... no racial quests... that's what I'm missing...

Anyway, hoping that will change in PoE2... 

I hope with cleric I can have a different approach... I only regret taking Durance out... He's fun...

 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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I guess I way prefer this game to Fallout 4, where you have a prescribed personality more or less and it sucks away player agency.

 

I think the trouble with Pillars is the disposition system, in that a large majority of conversations will be presenting you with every disposition option available regardless of your past choices and so I think this in turn makes the character come across as someone with an indistinct personality (as in, you read through all these choices when they're presented to you, and while it is to provide options in a way it does seem like the character is having all these incongruent ideas running through their head at the same time). I think an adaptive system would be nicer, where if you keep picking Cruel options your opportunity to pick Benevolent becomes less and less.

 

A lot of the time your personality in Fallout 4 was SHAAUUUN! though...

 

More seriously, the voiced protagonist really hurt Fallout 4 for me, because the conversations didn't follow a natural tone, you could be blandly inquisitive one line and then passionately angry the next and then right back to bland to tail off.  I never felt like the player character was a defined personality any more than they were in any other Fallout game, if anything they had too little personality because most of the voice lines were delivered in an amazingly bland tone except when they were about SHAAUUUN!

 

It's not like The Witcher where Geralt does have a defined personality (but the player still has a lot of choice about how to have him respond to the world within the constraints of that personality)

 

I like the dispositions system because it gives you quite a wide range of ways to define a personality for your own character.  I never felt like the different options were things the character was considering, I just looked for the one the character I had decided I was being would say and clicked that one.  I think the thing where sometimes you can't quite tell what something's going to be is a consequence of having a lot of them (and possibly multiple writers with different interpretations of them).

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Well.. let's just say that sometimes there's a thin line between being stoic and cruel... or honest and benevolent... 

Clearly, since we don't hear our toon speaking, we're just imagining the tone... 

I wish my paladin was just a bit more...defined, personality-wise. But let's see PoE2 for that..

 - There are 10 types of people: those who understand binary code, and those who don't. - 

 

 

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I guess I way prefer this game to Fallout 4, where you have a prescribed personality more or less and it sucks away player agency.

 

I think the trouble with Pillars is the disposition system, in that a large majority of conversations will be presenting you with every disposition option available regardless of your past choices and so I think this in turn makes the character come across as someone with an indistinct personality (as in, you read through all these choices when they're presented to you, and while it is to provide options in a way it does seem like the character is having all these incongruent ideas running through their head at the same time). I think an adaptive system would be nicer, where if you keep picking Cruel options your opportunity to pick Benevolent becomes less and less.

 

A lot of the time your personality in Fallout 4 was SHAAUUUN! though...

 

More seriously, the voiced protagonist really hurt Fallout 4 for me, because the conversations didn't follow a natural tone, you could be blandly inquisitive one line and then passionately angry the next and then right back to bland to tail off.  I never felt like the player character was a defined personality any more than they were in any other Fallout game, if anything they had too little personality because most of the voice lines were delivered in an amazingly bland tone except when they were about SHAAUUUN!

Yeah I hated Fallout 4 for a wide variety of reasons not limited just how crap the main character was. Easily my least favourite modern RPG, made more annoying by the fact I think it could have been great.

 

I like the dispositions system because it gives you quite a wide range of ways to define a personality for your own character.  I never felt like the different options were things the character was considering, I just looked for the one the character I had decided I was being would say and clicked that one.  I think the thing where sometimes you can't quite tell what something's going to be is a consequence of having a lot of them (and possibly multiple writers with different interpretations of them).

I still think an adaptive system would be better, in some ways after a point you want you character to be reacting in an organic way - so the addition of loads of options to read through late in the game when your character's personality is by then set in stone doesn't make much sense. Later options could be gated in that if you have a cruel option you can only access it if you already have say 2 cruel disposition or if you have a negative enough reputation with that group (and vice versa with benevolent and positive rep). You can even make them quest state or narrative locked, for example if you play a cruel character but then there's some massive quest where you pledge to redeem yourself you can start accessing options for and developing a benevolent reputation again. 

 

Providing multiple means to access such an option (by disposition or by faction rep) takes into account not only your personality but also whether or not you get on with a group (a cruel character doesn't need to be benevolent to help a group he gets on with), it would also have greater subtlety which is my main beef with the current system. While Pillars does this a little bit, doing it to a much greater extent would have removed a lot of the noise from late game dialogue. As you say, the muddled and inconsistent allocation of dispositions is likely from having too many writers tackling the dialogue.

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I personally find adaptive system sort of terrible. Removing choice based on the developers' idea of how a personality would solidify isn't exactly great. Leave that in the hand of the players and you remove a lot of possible headaches development-wise *while* also giving the players more freedom as to how to behave.

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I wouldn't say it's removing choice, as all the options would be available to your character at the start, but as you select certain options more often you get access to fewer irrelevant options. The only option it is removing is the option to play someone who schizoidly picks conflicting options all the time, to me that doesn't sound like denying people freedom. Further, dialogue checks (i.e. New Vegas style checks that see if you have a certain rep or skill/attribute level) are extremely commonplace, and that's all an adaptive system would do.

 

I think the best way to do it would be checking at a greater than or equal value. So say if your doing a very slight benevolent favour for someone, that could be blocked to cruelty 3 or greater (really cruel people wouldn't do something that doesn't help them even if it's minor, but semi-cruel people might still do something outside of their own interest). Then say there's a huge, altruist sacrifice you make for someone - that might be ruled out to people with any cruel nature at all. In this way, your dispositions get reinforced giving your character personality, wildly inappropriate options for how you've acted up until now aren't displayed and it gives a level of consequence for acting consistently in a certain way.

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