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I love this game, it is almost perfect. My favourite RPG of all time was Baldurs Gate 2. But i would say, it's almost even now. Only the world of BG is much better, because there is so much more to discover from R.A. Salvatore books etc.

 

What i don't like is ... (CONTAINS MINOR SPOILERS - NOT STORY WISE)

 

# The resting restriction of 2 in PotD. That makes it frustrating for a solo run as wizard or priest. You have to constantly recover your spells and you have to leave the dungeon over and over to get more resting gear. It should be unlimited or at least, the stack should be at 10 or more. In Baldurs Gate you get random encounters when you rest, that would be an idea maybe, but the restriction is a no go i think.

 

# The Gloves of Manipulation are too rare. I played through the game 5 times and found em only once. As an example, that skaen temple below dyrfort, needs 10 mechanics for the traps, but i could never accomplish that by the time, i do the dungeon. Maybe as rouge with background bonus, but hard with other classes and when you play solo. The gloves would have helped a lot.

 

# The loading times. At the beginning of the game, they where pretty short, but later on, they get longer and you have to load a lot in this game, so this should be improved.

 

# The lack of immunity to stun. You can only reduce the time with a potion and a armor, and get more deflection bonus when you are stunned. But why is there not simply a item, that makes u immun, like that gloves for paralyze or scroll against petrify / charmed? That would make the fight against vithrak sometimes easier.

 

I think for now that is all, what i don't like about the game.

 

/EDIT I forgot something:

 

# The bottle drinking. Very often you try to drink something, but instead he attacks. I think he gets interrupted, but he should just keep on trying to drink it, instead of attacking.

Edited by baldurs_gate_2
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1> You shouldn't be resting 10 times in a dungeon - it usually means the combat is too difficult for your party and you are having to throw the kitchen sink every time. I agree that solo wiz/priest is an exception, though in my solo wizard POTD runs I rarely ever needed to trek back, since in solo you're building your wizard to be pretty competent fighters anyway. Sometimes, a restriction is designed to make you rethink your tactics - and frustration only comes when you refuse to change, and continue doing the same thing. Maybe a slight boost to supplies when going solo?

 

2> Now, tell me I'm a moron if I remember wrong, but you don't absolutely need 10 mechanics to navigate the Skaen temple, you only need it to get the optimum path through the central gates, no? The game is also reasonably nonlinear at that point, so it's easy to complete other tasks in Defiance Bay?

 

3> Yes. 

 

4> It was a conscious design decision to not have 'hard' immunities, I believe, and very few enemies feature any kind of hard immunity as well. So the playing field is fair, and that means things like scrolls of defence/valour actually become important as you look for ways to overcome or build up relevant defences. Personally, I would prefer POE2 to include some hard immunities, especially for enemies, even though in POE it never really screwed you over very bad. I think Sawyer has spoken about revisiting this decision. 

Edited by Tigranes
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early in the development, the obsidians vague implied vancian casting, re-charged by rest, would be exorcised from poe.  as with too many good ideas, a large % o' ie game purists rose up and railed 'bout how obsidian were ruining the spirit o' a spiritual successor game.  so, we got traditional daily casting for traditional ie caster classes.  congrats for the purists.

 

*shrug*

 

the developers has observed how the game is clear not balanced for solo potd runs.  the % o' purchasers who actual do solo potd is so small it makes little sense to balance the game for their benefit.  save for a few challenge-ruining exploits which can also be used in party runs, the obsidians do not lose sleep over solo potd fixes. as tig observes, you were never intended to be able to rest 10 times in a dungeon on a potd run, solo or otherwise.  gotta change tactics 'cause obsidian won't actual cater to potd solo concerns... particular in light o' how we got daily casting priests n' wizards in the first place.

 

yeah, gloves o' manipulation is essential IF, and only if, you want your non-rogue to be able to succesful disarm every trap and open every lock in the game.  1007 tables change with every patch, but if you really want gloves o' manipulation, do a search for 1007 tables.  is a chest in raedrics where we believe you will be able to get the gloves you wish.  is only in the chest 1 day outta 30, but...

 

personal, we see no reason why poe classes have inherent skill bonuses.  such inherent bonuses is offending obsidian's espoused goals o' freedom o' customization.  the skills weren't thought out and designed well, and they do not make any class feel more unique.  poe skills kinda suck. the genesis poster's trap concerns is the Only reason we foresee a player making a character class choice based 'pon skills available. hopeful poe 2 skills is improved, but the genesis poster does have solutions available to him.  1) include a rogue in your party. 2) meta-game access to early-game gloves o' manipulation.  even so, not being able to disarm a handful o' traps w/o a rogue or gloves is unlikely to get obsidian to make changes.

 

loading times, for some folks, is excessive.  have heard explanations 'bout load times, and following patches a few folks invariably claim loads got better/worse.  dunno.  for Gromnir this game does have rather lengthy loads.  

 

as tig mentioned, d&d/ie game hard counters and immunities were purposeful avoided during development.  the reasoning for avoiding hard-counters were sound... and were actual kinda funny how irrational folks could be 'bout immunities post release.  the aforementioned ie purists would complain 'bout how their naked glass cannons with basement intelligence and resolve were proof of the pointlessness o' poe attributes.  'course same people were complaining 'bout how their naked glass cannons were 3-shot killing each other 'cause o' seeming unavoidable charms and dominates.  we got a good laugh as such folks argued themselves into knots.  even so, it were unfortunate how poe accuracy bloat and effect stacking made a mockery o' the lack o' immunities.  example: a character with high accuracy and enough fire effects could encounter critters with high fire resistance and still easily kill the fire elemental (or whatever) with fire.  give +30 resistance to ________  were a negligible hurdle for a player who could guarantee crits with overkill kinda damage.

 

but yeah, not all folks are happy 'bout being stun-locked by functional unavoidable repeated grazes.  there are, o'course, strategies for dealing with such encounters, but many folks are indeed perturbed, particularly if they min-max self into a metaphorical hole from which they can not extricate themselves.

 

it will make the genesis poster pleased to know obsidian is considering adding hard-counters and immunities for a sequel.  unfortunate, their reasoning for doing so is bass ackwards. is not the stun-lock situation which offends developers-- that kinda encounter is working as designed.  nope, rather it is the fire wielding fire godlike monk or paladin going 'round killing fire elementals with a burning lash weapon that cheeses off josh.  'stead o' fixing the actual problem, it appears as if obsidian will simple go expedient and add immunities for poe2. so kinda a win for baldurs_gate_2 and a loss for us all when you think 'bout it.

 

HA! Good Fun!

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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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1: If you're playing solo as a Vancian caster, I can see why that would be annoying. For party play I quite like it. It forces me to play more conservatively, not casting all of my most powerful spells at the start of every fight, and I also don't have my emergence broken by the realisation that my party spends about 90% of its time asleep. It's perhaps not the most elegant solution to rest spamming, but I prefer it to random encounters (which get irritating quickly and can be avoided with save spamming).

 

2: Well, you can always abuse the "random" loot system to guarantee a pair in Raedric's Hold  ;). More seriously though, I don't see any reason every character should be able to detect and disarm every single trap. If doing so becomes routine then traps go from being a danger to being a nuisance. What I might agree with is that it was a mistake to include an item like the Gloves of Manipulation at all, particularly as a random drop, since their existence leads to frustration.

 

3: No argument here. Josh said it's something they hope to be able to improve in PoE2, both because they're using the newer Unity Engine and they intend to pack the data in a different way. Whether or not they'll succeed remains to be seen, but it's nice to see a dev acknowledge a problem and say they intend to improve it next time.

 

4: Once again, this is a lot worse in solo than in group play, and as I've mentioned in another thread the game was specifically not balanced for solo play.

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I'm bumming out, too. Tyranny may have ruined Pillars. Or maybe Pillars ruined Pillars. Haven't played since July, started a custom five-member squad and am just getting bum-rushed with difficulty spikes and low feelings of reward despite massive micro-management--ultra attention to Deflection, fastidious Enchantments, hawkish Recovery, perspicacious Perception, mondo Interrupt, resolute Resolve--none of it seems to matter to swarming high-speed hordes. Singles or duos or triplets of enemies are not awful, but more than four and it's Code Red to Wound City.

All Stop. On Screen.

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1: If you're playing solo as a Vancian caster, I can see why that would be annoying. For party play I quite like it. It forces me to play more conservatively, not casting all of my most powerful spells at the start of every fight, and I also don't have my emergence broken by the realisation that my party spends about 90% of its time asleep. It's perhaps not the most elegant solution to rest spamming, but I prefer it to random encounters (which get irritating quickly and can be avoided with save spamming).

 

2: Well, you can always abuse the "random" loot system to guarantee a pair in Raedric's Hold  ;). More seriously though, I don't see any reason every character should be able to detect and disarm every single trap. If doing so becomes routine then traps go from being a danger to being a nuisance. What I might agree with is that it was a mistake to include an item like the Gloves of Manipulation at all, particularly as a random drop, since their existence leads to frustration.

 

3: No argument here. Josh said it's something they hope to be able to improve in PoE2, both because they're using the newer Unity Engine and they intend to pack the data in a different way. Whether or not they'll succeed remains to be seen, but it's nice to see a dev acknowledge a problem and say they intend to improve it next time.

 

4: Once again, this is a lot worse in solo than in group play, and as I've mentioned in another thread the game was specifically not balanced for solo play.

Who should know that there is such a thing? I don't even know how that works.

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Who should know that there is such a thing? I don't even know how that works.

 

The "random" loot table? I don't know where to find an up to date copy as I believe Obsidian change it in some patches, but the basic idea is this: loot isn't random. Instead the loot a container contains is decided, when you first open it, based on which day of the month it is (I believe every month in Eora has the same number of days). So on day 6 it might contain Gauntlets of Accuracy, but if you had opened it on day 7 it might have contained the Gloves of Manipulation.

 

If you want to abuse this system, you can save before opening a container, then rest to change the day a test what it contains (until you get something you want). The table just tells you what will appear on what day, but the last time I used one it was only about 75% right.

 

I would only recommend doing this if you're trying to get achievements and there's an item you absolutely need (for whatever reason). If you're not chasing achievements then you'll save yourself a lot of time using the console (and ultimately, what's the difference?).

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I'm bumming out, too. Tyranny may have ruined Pillars. Or maybe Pillars ruined Pillars. Haven't played since July, started a custom five-member squad and am just getting bum-rushed with difficulty spikes and low feelings of reward despite massive micro-management--ultra attention to Deflection, fastidious Enchantments, hawkish Recovery, perspicacious Perception, mondo Interrupt, resolute Resolve--none of it seems to matter to swarming high-speed hordes. Singles or duos or triplets of enemies are not awful, but more than four and it's Code Red to Wound City.

white march monks and faux sahuagin (google spell-check actual knows "sahuagin"?) initial annoyed Gromnir as reasonable tactics didn't appear to matter. radiant spore battle mighta even been more tedious.  felt as if 1/2 our radiant spore successes were the result o' our prayers to the rng deities being answered as 'posed to our stratagems. 

 

am not certain where you are at, but am thinking you identify a clear flaw in the game. poe is kinda a hard-core micromanagement game, and white march is clear designed to challenge the tactics people spent hours developing during their poe play.  unfortunate, hard-core appeal is limited appeal. many (not all) hard-core folks is comic snobbish.  not only must a game be hard-core, but it must needs be the right kinda hard-core game.  gotta be tb and classless?  maybe gotta be exact like bg2, but with all the "proper" mods? a developer tries to go hardcore and they necessarily limit the folks who will possible appreciate.

 

sure, the developers added story-mode, but for folks who want some level o' challenge w/o being overwhelmed, story-mode no doubt feels patronizing.  

 

is a goldilocks kinda thing, eh? the bell curve for crpg appeal is gonna be fat in the middle allowing for very limited numbers o' happy purchasers at either extreme end o' the curve.  core poe purposeful aims appeal at a more extreme end o' the bell curve. white march pushes towards even more hardcore appeal. as much as am personal liking poe, am thinking the overall design philosophy is suspect as it necessarily has limited appeal.  you gonna make a game to appeal to papa bear?  fine.  gotta accept papa bear for who he is: a grumpy curmudgeon with a rather refined (limited) palette.  make papa bear happy necessarily means you leave most others dissatisfied.

 

works for Gromnir... a grumpy curmudgeon if ever there was one.

 

HA! Good Fun!

"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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Well, and now I feel sheepish for being amused with Aarik D. getting party-wiped during the Developer Commentary stream. The only change to the game since June, when I completed it with Snidely Whiplash the Priest, was 3.04, yet none of the patch notes indicate how they solved the fun I was having. Dunno, maybe because of Tyranny, but I don't remember enemies in PoE moving so quickly, targeting specific classes, ignoring typical engagement, and pantsing my waterboy who's supposed to be safe on the sidelines. At times, party positioning feels useless, so then I do, too, at times. Total time is now 317 hours, I was just about to finish Act II.     

 

     

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All Stop. On Screen.

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yeah, the new ai is just silly.  how the hell does every enemy know which one of your party members has the worst will/fort/reflex defense?  and somebody needs explain the new math of engagement to Gromnir, 'cause it sure seems as if we need two tanks in a party, and both tanks need be able to do respectable damage to hold enemies, which kinda defeats the point o' engagement, no?  etc.

 

 

oh well. 

 

HA! Good Fun!

"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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yeah, the new ai is just silly.  how the hell does every enemy know which one of your party members has the worst will/fort/reflex defense?  and somebody needs explain the new math of engagement to Gromnir, 'cause it sure seems as if we need two tanks in a party, and both tanks need be able to do respectable damage to hold enemies, which kinda defeats the point o' engagement, no?  etc.

 

 

oh well. 

 

HA! Good Fun!

 

They hover their cursor over your party at battle start and check the tooltips.

 

I didn't find post-3.0 AI too ridiculous most of the time, but it's clear that POE never solved the positionign problem from the player's end; initially it was far too easy for everyone to get stuck and for the player to funnel the enemy exactly where they wanted them, now every battle is a mess with people running around everywhere. Engagement probably needs a rethink at this point in tandem with however they want to set enemy priorities for POE2. (And actually, I found Tyranny to be a lot worse - every other encounter had enemies who could teleport to your backline, and those who couldn't would run to your backline anyway. I had enemie srunning in circles around my party.) 

 

I think post-3.0 is a lot simpler to think about if you pretend you're playing through an IE campaign, i.e. not worry about engagement too much. I never built characters specifically around engagement rules even in 1.0, and as the campaign goes on all the characters start to find ways to defend themselves and to make themselves dangerous - whether it be equipment-boosted defences or specific abilities, etc. - and nobody's sitting there going "but I'm a tank and the only thing I know is to take damage". (Is that what a tank actually is, for people who play MMOs and stuff? What's with all these boilerplate roles?)

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you don't need roles if you abandon classes.  unfortunately, poe has classes. poe has loads of classes.  to avoid "best tank" or "best dps" nonsense, the developers realized making each class distinct were necessary. give each class a unique powha has always been a fail in ie games and elsewhere as it results in clear bests, which means you also got worsts.  to avoid such wastefulness o' classes, the developers attempted to make each poe class genuine unique.

 

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/66380-update-81-the-front-line-fighters-and-barbarians/

 

sadly, with all the patches, the initial design concepts got lost. "Overall, fighters are designed to be low-maintenance, reliable, and long-lived even in marathon battles." in the ie games, fighters could laugh off trebuchet blows while dishing out epic pain.  the goal o' poe were Not to make the poe fighter perform same as the ie fighter.  the poe fighter would be able to sit on the front lines and absorb pain without the need for constant micromanagement. damage output of the poe fighter would not be challenging that o' poe monks or barbarians, and definite not rangers and rogues. unfortunate, post 3.0 patches and the poe fighter is looking very much like the ie fighter. the fighter is no longer a low maintenance damage sink who can hold baddies away from squishies.  the 3.0 fighter now does rogue-like damage and requires just as much micromanagement as any other class... while being less able to hold enemies away from squishies.

 

you got many classes? you need many roles. otherwise you got considerable overlap and eventual marginalization.

 

take the poe rogue.  the poe rogue still is, in limited situations, the premier melee damage dealing class in the game.  the poe rogue has not been altered much since release, save the initial trap nerf.  rogues is still squishy and fragile... and an increasing suspect choice 'cause o' ai changes and alterations to other classes.  why play a rogue when rangers has been improved so very much and clear out damage a rogue?  why play a rogue when fighters now do similar damage w/o being so darn squishy? at least in the past tanks could reliable hold foes away from squishies. is not as if rogues has become worse since release, but even so, 'cause fighters and rangers and other classes has seen so many changes, rogue is now the leper class o' poe.  doesn't mean much to complete a potd solo run these days... unless you do it as a rogue.

 

engagement has always been a suspect quality.  as far as we is aware, developers has made no changes to engagement in a long time.  so why are people complaining, eh?  what developers made changes to were encounter design and enemy ai.  the developers also spent considerable efforts "improving" weak or dull classes. unfortunate, the changes to ai exposed less salient weaknesses o' a few classes. furthermore, the developer improvements o' a few classes has not... not been improvements. more powerful, while always meeting with initial player approval, is a dangerous option in a game. increased power is not frequent an improvement in a game. some folks reflexive hate the idea o' balance, but balance is an essential quality in most any game. is kinda ironic that with all the post release improvements, the classes is less unique and far less balanced.  

 

am hopeful a fresh start with a poe 2 will allow the developers to turn back the clock on a few o' the classes, 'cause while we enjoy the game, obsidian let the post-release game kinda spin outta their grasp.  perhaps the developers fixed isolated issues and lost sight o' the game as a whole? dunno.  good game. we like game.  sadly, is more than a few things 'bout the game which were better at release.  

 

HA! Good Fun! 

"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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I guess my experience generally has been that given POE's many classes and its design goal of allowing many different builds within each class (which I think was overall successful), most characters have ready ways to make themselves at least a bit more flexible than terms like 'tank' or 'glass cannon' would suggest. And one thing I hold positive about the latter-day POE is that it forces players to think beyond 3CON/RES carpet bombers and 3 MIGHT brick walls. That said, I haven't played fighters in a long time and not a great deal of POE recently, so I take your word about the emerging class imbalances.

 

 

And more broadly, I certainly agree that over its lengthy and complicated post-release lifespan POE balance has become extremely unwieldy. As I said, engagement system as a whole should get an overhaul for poe2, connected to what they want to achieve with encounters and AI, and indeed what kind of character roles they want to encourage. Vanilla POE was essentially a game of setting up static battlefields then playing the numbers game with enemy defences; right now it's much more of an every man on his own kind of struggle. 

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I don't know if it was an update or what, but the loading times for  me now aren't nearly as long as they were the first time I played last year. I didn't like the rest mechanic at first but it grew on me now I like it as I have to be more efficient and conservative with my spells. And I hate resting and waking up to numerous enemies that requires multiple reloads.

Why does a chair have arms and legs like a man, but can't walk or hold things?

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That said, I haven't played fighters in a long time and not a great deal of POE recently, so I take your word about the emerging class imbalances. 

 

I'd say that the balance is much, much better now that it was at release (or indeed has ever been). Even the poor Rogue, (almost) universally recognised as the weakest class at the moment isn't really that bad, and the other ten classes are in a pretty good place balance wise.

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Finally I’ve discovered an active discussion on PoE which I’ve struggled with since August. Having just arrived at the final confrontation with Thaos – where my team apparently need a nuclear arsenal to blast the b****r to bits, I’ve realised I must have missed this optional purchase when last in Hearthsong Market.

 

Now stuck down a hole with no access to shops, I’m wondering whether I should buy and install the expansion packs at this stage. But knowing my luck, Thaos will have called in more of his mates and I still would be stuck down there.

 

I cut my RPG teeth on Crowther and Wood’s Adventure. Since then, excellent RPGs have never failed to entertain. PoE is up there with the best – BG1, BG2, IWD etc. With any game, players will spot bugs and weaknesses. That’s inevitable but it been great to see active support taking place.

 

I’ve found Pillars a tough game even at “Normal” level. In various threads I’ve read fatuous boasts of people finishing Pillars in 3 hours playing solo on Nightmare level. Sorry! Doesn’t interest me! I want to open every chest and explore every option. (I was a Test Manager before retirement).

 

As mentioned by others, I’ve also encountered ever-increasing load times after the first few hours of play. After a few abortive attempts, it caused me to abandon the game in 2015. I reinstalled the game last autumn assuming that these issues would have been fixed. They weren’t. Just as bad!

 

After posted for forum help, I followed good advice. Steam appeared to be causing much of my problem because of continual syncing of save files. That wretched system never allows the player to remove redundant save files from the cloud. Not only does it upload temporary PC saves before I can delete them from the PC but downloads masses of saves I made in 2015. If anyone knows of an obvious way to delete save files from the Steam cloud permanently I would love to hear of it.

 

To make matters worse, a bug surfaced at the point I recruited my 6th NPC. This Party Management issue caused major headaches. Apart from not being able to design the team I wanted, I kept ending up with two copies of the same companion. By the time this problem was corrected by the last PoE bug-fix It would have had to go back and repeat over one third of the game. The correction to the Savefile wiped out the duplicate but in the process a large amount of Unique items went as well.

 

After the game fix was implemented, I followed advice and attempted to prevent all Steam interference. The load/save timings improved a bit (still a pain at 150 seconds plus) but it has at least allowed me to get to the end point (even if never manage to kill the b****r).

 

Because of the time it takes to rerun different options on a quest I resorted to using the Official Pillars website to obtain some idea of what different options might do. Yup I cheated!! In the process I discovered AddItem and used it to patch back into the game all items lost as a result of the Obsidian party management fix. For good measure, I examined the items that the game had failed to spawn for me

 

I expect to make another full run through without resorting to cheating (BTW is it cheating to wait beside each cache for 30 days to obtain the best item it can spawn?).

 

The link to the game’s object list was dated early 2015. It listed about 3000 objects / properties used by Pillars. Unfortunately code writers didn’t always follow formal naming standards. With later additions, it’s difficult to guess the name used by PoE to recognise newer items. I’ve managed to deduce codes for 37 items missing from the 2015 list. I suspect the Companion adventures were not included as part of the original release because they make up the bulk of missing codes.

 

There are 4 codes, I cannot deduce: Blighted Coals, Iverra's Diving Helmet, Amaia's Codex and

The Nautilus of Or-Grammon

 

My play-through didn’t generate some of these. It would be helpful to me if anyone knew the game names for these 4 items - or where I can find an up-to-date list (including both expansion games).

 

A few other comments. PoE is massive, complex and can be played in numerous ways. I am not totally convinced about some of the dozens of refinements and their effect on the game play. For example “Reputation”, I dutifully tried to get approval from all factions. Apart from additional dialog options, it is difficult to see how relevant this actually is (I do understand mass slaughter will drastically reduce a player’s chance of getting cooperation).

 

Weapon and Armor choices – the player is overwhelmed with possibilities but again it is not easy to see the merits of an Estoc over a Greatsword (apart from a minor uplift when an appropriate perk is selected on Levelling Up. I just get the feeling that many players will bang away with a flail throughout the game because they are unsure if any other weapons would be more effective.

 

New “Magic” Users; the Chanter, Cipher, Paladin, Druid, Monk etc. It’ll take many play-through before I get the hang of the spells/power these classes can wield. It was only with the Chanter, I started to feel comfortable. The Paladin – the Holy Knight baffled me. It seemed she was only there to provide back-up to the cleric.

 

In the main, I found the NPCs were fun. They had terrible base stats for the professions they professed to follow. I had a fighter that had mediocre strength, a mage with indifferent intellect etc. They also carried a weird selection of armor and weapons, which mistakenly I believed should be upgraded rather than replaced. I still haven’t a clue what to do with Sagini and gave up on her.

 

Final Moan: I find the design of the Obsidian website particularly hard to use realistically. I wanted to go to forums to find help from other players, to report bugs to developers, to look at future bug release info, to check for expansions etc. Frequently I seemed to end up in areas way outside of PoE where forum members were discussing American Politics, talking about their fave NPC or in discussions on totally different games.

 

Trying to discover if a bug had already been raised / and was being dealt with seemed impossible. I did eventually raise the slow loadings of Save games as a New posting and got help. However large numbers of PoE posting are completely out-of-date and confusing. They are referring to the initial launch version. Can I suggest that an archive and redesign of the Obsidian website is long overdue?

 

Apart from my request for help above. PoE is a brilliant game and I look forward to trying out a different approach to playing it.

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I think the ranger is weaker than the rogue

 

This was the case, but definitely isn't any more. The Rogue may do better single target damage, but the Ranger has Driving Flight and Twinned Arrows which allow them to hit multiple targets per shot. Combine this with Stormcaller* and you are potentially also stunning multiple targets and also reducing their resistance to Shock damage. Then consider the fact that, when given appropriate talents, pets are actually pretty tanky and decent damage dealers (they're not going to win any competitions, by they are a free addition) and you quickly realise that Rogue's are left way behind.

 

Go back to patch 1.X and yeah, Rangers were pretty bad, but Obsidian have buffed them several times in their patches and DLCs and they are now in a very good place.

 

*Stormcaller is one of the easiest soulbound weapons to get. If you beelined it you could perhaps get it by level 5 or 6.

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I expect to make another full run through without resorting to cheating (BTW is it cheating to wait beside each cache for 30 days to obtain the best item it can spawn?).

 

Not as far as Achievements are concerned, which is the nearest we get to an official ruling on what is, and isn't cheating. Whether you personally view it as cheating is, I guess, down to you. I usually avoid it, but more because it's tedious and breaks my immersion than that it's cheating.

 

There are 4 codes, I cannot deduce: Blighted Coals, Iverra's Diving Helmet, Amaia's Codex and

The Nautilus of Or-Grammon

 

Based on the game files I'd guess: figurine_blighted_coals, helm_iverras_diving_bell, pet_amaias_codex (or possibly item_pet_amaias_codex) and figurine_the_nautlius_of_or-grammon

 

A few other comments. PoE is massive, complex and can be played in numerous ways. I am not totally convinced about some of the dozens of refinements and their effect on the game play. For example “Reputation”, I dutifully tried to get approval from all factions. Apart from additional dialog options, it is difficult to see how relevant this actually is (I do understand mass slaughter will drastically reduce a player’s chance of getting cooperation).

 

 

I believe reputation is almost exclusively used for gating certain conversations. There may also be one or two quests that are unlocked through reputation (the only one I can think of just like that is the Kolsc will approach you in Gilded Vale to ask you to kill Raedric if your reputation is high enough, otherwise you need to travel towards Raedric's Hold and meet him on the way there). It doesn't seem to have any affect on shop prices though.

 

 

Weapon and Armor choices – the player is overwhelmed with possibilities but again it is not easy to see the merits of an Estoc over a Greatsword (apart from a minor uplift when an appropriate perk is selected on Levelling Up. I just get the feeling that many players will bang away with a flail throughout the game because they are unsure if any other weapons would be more effective.

 

 

Arguably this is not a bad thing. On lower difficulties the differences are fairly minor (unless you come across an enemy who's immune to piercing say) and Paths of the Damned is primarily targeted at those players who enjoy immersing themselves in the mechanics and will pay attention to the specific damage reductions of an enemy and adjust their weapon based on them.

 

 

New “Magic” Users; the Chanter, Cipher, Paladin, Druid, Monk etc. It’ll take many play-through before I get the hang of the spells/power these classes can wield. It was only with the Chanter, I started to feel comfortable. The Paladin – the Holy Knight baffled me. It seemed she was only there to provide back-up to the cleric.

 

 

I'd say the most natural role for the Paladin is as a tank/support hybrid: their job is to take hits for the party whilst also providing various buffs at the same time.

 

 

In the main, I found the NPCs were fun. They had terrible base stats for the professions they professed to follow. I had a fighter that had mediocre strength, a mage with indifferent intellect etc. They also carried a weird selection of armor and weapons, which mistakenly I believed should be upgraded rather than replaced. I still haven’t a clue what to do with Sagini and gave up on her.

 

 

One thing that takes some getting used to in PoE (compared to, say, Baldur's Gate) is that attributes are really not that important. They all scale linearly so a few points here and there really don't matter. In particularly, none of the NPC companions are crippled by their attributes.

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This post is directed at JerekKruger after his help with my gameplay. Having re-read other posts, I may not be alone having issues coordinating battles successfully

 

 

I really appreciate the time you took to reply to my post and doing it in such a succinct manner.

 

I’m sure you appreciated that parts of my text contained a fair amount of “tongue in cheek” but I am truly fascinated by this game and am seriously trying to take it apart to see what makes it tick.

 

Firstly it was marvellous that you were able to supply the 4 missing code names of items that I had failed to decrypt. The name used for the Coals was evident. I’m surprised I failed to try that specific combination. The other 3 however I’d never have guessed, no matter how many attempts I made. Diving Bell ? Nautlius ?? and Item_Pet ??? You must be a world-class cryptographer.

 

Leaving aside the issues caused by excessively slow Save / Load times, I wasn’t exaggerating when I said I thought the game tough. I found PoE a pretty difficult game with which to get to grips - both in how to understand its rationale and how to control the NPCs in every confrontation.

 

It was a month after Pillar’s launch that I heard about it (too late to become a backer then!!). Information available was meagre but I’d a feeling it could prove to be a very interesting game.

 

My posting reflected uneasy misgivings that I’d been agonising too much about the stats. There was so little to guide a new player on how best to develop their party. Obviously wearing something that gave a +1 boost to intelligence might be helpful but as I didn’t know the intelligence scale, it was unclear how useful it actually would be. If there were a scale of 20 it would be a +5% increase etc

 

An earlier posting in this thread mentioned a very high Mechanics value needed to open a chest. But long before reaching that area there are numerous other places where an increasingly high skill level in Mechanics was required to avoid detonation of traps. Having chosen a fighter as my avatar (no skill given to mechanics), with misgivings I started to build Aloth into a Wizard-Thief.

 

In Chapter 3 I began to apply upgrades to unique items. It was obvious that “Superb” was better that “Exceptional” but just how much better would that make the item? Perhaps an upgrade such as “Of Freezing” or “Slaying Beasts” might be preferable. With little comprehension of the nuances involved (and being unaware of what lay ahead), I found this area a bewildering bit of guesswork.

I’m struggling with angst that “its all wrong” and earlier decisions will make it impossible (or extremely difficult) to finish the game.

 

No! I absolutely don’t require someone to hold my hand and give me an exact template of how to win. Pillars unlike many similar is much more complicated in the character development area.

 

I note your comment about reputation not affecting shop prices. Maintaining a good reputation would probably lower shop prices – Wrong! (Only after fulfilling a quest for a Copperlane shopkeeper, do you recive any lowered prices). Even in an upgraded stronghold, I was expected by my employees to pay a 750% mark-up price on their stock.

 

Shopkeepers are a weak area. Their stock didn’t varied nor was it replenished and in most cases wasn’t upgraded. I strongly suspect that the sheer volume of spears, shields and armour I had sold to the stronghold shopkeeper (which he then retained) was a probable cause of the game becoming slower. Surely “junk level” items could be withdrawn from play once the party leaves the area.

 

While I am certainly not skilled enough to play on the Path of the Damned, I am very interested in the mechanics of the game. In theory I know I should have been switching weapons types throughout. In practice, that seldom occurred (apart from the occasional change from range to melee). Many battles seemed to be little more than a blur of its “us” against the horde.

 

Dragonage was a game I really admired – (the original RPG not all the rubbish that followed). In that game I was able to position party members at the start of the battle in a more orderly manner – allowing grunts to protect the weaker characters. Inevitably I chose to play a thief assassin that set about infiltrating the enemy camp. In PoE, it seemed inevitable that I needed to react to whatever the enemy threw at the party rather than to plan an offensive campaign.

 

I did monitor the scrolled record of the battle and began to understand what was or wasn’t working. But in the inevitable mayhem of battle, it was hard to enough to identify a character’s position once they had been surrounded by multiple enemies.

 

I did attempt to stack sequential actions for characters but nearly always needed to break out of the planned order due to something else that took precedence.

 

The game refuses to allow characters to receive buffs after the battle starts?? Talk about being unprepared. Surely you should permit some buffs before a character takes an enormous hit?

 

Your comment about the Paladin reflects my own understanding of the class but I found Pallegina to be a poor auxiliary fighter.

 

As mentioned, I did not get to grips with Sagani and in battle spent much of the time trying to apply buffs to her or reviving both her and her mutt.

 

Grieving Mother was interesting but after she had expended her Focus Level, it frequently did not recharge itself quickly enough before she was downed. (i.e. she failed to damage the enemy)

 

My next attempt will involve playing PoE in a less frenetic manner and trying to get every member of the party to fulfil their basic roles – not sure I will succeed but I can try.

 

I purchased a DVD copy of PoE in 2015 but thought that having a Steam link to the game would provide me with bug-fixes and updates. After monitoring the way Steam has continually been manipulating my game save files – thus causing an additional drag on game play - I intend to delete the Steam Account and to reinstall PoE on my PC with updates coming down from the web.

 

Any pointers to useful (but not overly technical) discussion of game play would be much appreciated.

 

Thanks once again for your help

 

Chris

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Any pointers to useful (but not overly technical) discussion of game play would be much appreciated.

 

 

Here are a couple of quick pointers:

 

  1. Set up the game's auto pause in the Options. I like to pause (and stop movement) when finding a trap, and when finding enemies. Then I have it set to pause when combat starts, after an ability is used and when someone dies or is seriously hurt.
  2. Set up the game in Options to automatically go to "slow time" during combat.
  3. Frequently pause the game in order to review the combat log and to re-issue commands.

This will let you come to grips and to learn the mechanics of the game. Doing this you will come to understand how the various defenses work, how armor and damage threshold works. You will then understand why an Estoc is the most damaging weapon and why and when you want two handers.

 

The magnificence of PoE is in it's intricate mechanics and understanding how to tweak things to get what results you want. Taking a team with synergy that makes the total more than the sum of its parts. This is where PoE is much different than Tyranny, in Tyranny there is not much for synergy or a need to understand the mechanics, just make the most powerful dude and add in three other dudes.

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a couple quick observations

 

1) your experience with buffs is the opposite of the reality

 

dunno.  maybe you gotta bug.  once battle starts is the only time a majority of buffs may be applied to your party.  pre-battle buffing is, for the most part, limited to persistent auras and food consumption.

 

2) pallegina is effective to an annoying degree

 

josh sawyer's jnpc contribution to poe is pallegina.  am simple stating a fact 'bout the link 'tween josh and the npc paladin with unique special abilities which make her more efficacious as a striker paladin than any player created paladin can aspire to be.  draw what conclusions you will.  nevertheless, be it as a ranged or melee combatant, pallegina can be a comical powerful addition to your party.  

 

3) cipher balance has been a constant problem

 

sure, there has been a few bugs which made it possible for a player to ignore focus concerns, but even when such have been addressed, the developers has been fighting a near impossible battle to keep ciphers from being overpowered. no doubt if you take a quick peak at a few o' the cipher build recommendations a bit lower down the board, you will no doubt see suggestions for how to keep a cipher's focus reserves plentiful.  

 

4) rangers no longer suck

 

at release, rangers were a pain to micromanage, and kinda weak as well.  rangers are no longer weak, but am not a fan even so.  chanters and rangers rare have a place in our party, but it ain't 'cause they are underpowered.  again, if you genuine wish to keep sagani in your party, read any one o' the numerous ranger optimization threads in the class build portion o' the board.  the dwarf ranger also is making significant thematic contributions to the poe story, so there is that.  'course you gotta dig through layers o' lore exposition to get to her story, so...

 

am thinking the most troublesome aspects of poe combat for new players is same now as they was during the beta.  combat is fast and unforgiving.  IF you don't got established tactics to handle charm or confusion encounters, then such combats will end fast and ugly.  bug swarms cast by ogre druids (even w/o the benefit o' technical bugs to enhance damage) can reduce a low/mid-level party to formless goo in less than a minute if the would-be heroes ain't prepared.  well, how the heck can you be prepared if you are new to the game? as bad as were beetles and bears in the beta, improvements in enemy/monster ai has made poe similarly unfriendly for new players.  combat starts and a moment later the mobs o' whatever rush past our tanks and target whomever in our party has the worst possible defense 'gainst __________.  such ai improvements is welcomed by hardcore players who have literal hundreds of hours of experience playing poe, but for a new player the shock and awe tactics is gonna be demoralizing.

 

is tough for many veterans of poe to provide useful advice precisely 'cause they have so much experience. functionally the game is far slower for a person who has played poe for an embarrassing number of hours.  also, the game were intended to have no specific tactic which would work for every battle, though such a goal has remained outta reach when experienced players is manipulating the game mechanics.  

 

*shrug*

 

poe were not meant to be a rock-paper-scissors game. each enemy were not 'posed to have a kryptonite.  even so, enemies will be weaker 'gainst __________.  rare does a foe have equal good defenses.  will be a weapon type or elemental type a monster is weakest 'gainst.  perhaps a critter has relative poor will defense?  well then, before trying to target the foe with a will attack, hit it with a will debuff such as miasma of dull mindedness, then follow up with a divine mark which targets will but also lowers deflection and does fire damage.  at the same time, enemies will target your weaknesses. 

 

similarly, you can pile on a whole lotta buffs on your own party transforming your pedestrian seeming group o' adventurers into monster-slaying juggernauts.  the thing is, and here is where poe is particular opaque for new folks, it is often difficult to discern what effects will stack.  typical, two spells offering the same benefit will only use the higher value when cast 'pon the same target.  there is seeming exceptions to this rule. a priest's modified holy radiance will stack with a paladin's aura.  why? do you care?  how on earth is you, as a new player, s'posed to know what can stack?  veteran players know.  vet players will give advice which works perfect well when you got ridiculous buffed defenses and accuracy, but may leave you frustrated.

 

play on normal difficulty is kinda hard compared to most crpgs.  poe combats is fast and unforgiving, but unlike games such as age of decadence, there is gonna be multiple ways you can build effective characters.  as brutal as poe can be, you will see dozens of different recommended best tactics for dealing with particular nasty foes.  sure, solo potd runs is gonna see options marginalized as gimmicks is often the best (only) way to handle a combat, but a full party is gonna have many options available.  give you good advice is gonna much depend on how you wanna play poe.  all-priest-party? no-priest-party?  both is viable and can be effective... even overwhelming. 

 

so, how do you wanna play poe?  whatever is your answer, is gonna be folks who can make suggestions on making your party members work together... and because three people give complete different advice hardly means any of 'em is wrong.  

 

HA! Good Fun!

"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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I really appreciate the time you took to reply to my post and doing it in such a succinct manner.

 

You're welcome, glad it was useful.

 

Firstly it was marvellous that you were able to supply the 4 missing code names of items that I had failed to decrypt. The name used for the Coals was evident. I’m surprised I failed to try that specific combination. The other 3 however I’d never have guessed, no matter how many attempts I made. Diving Bell ? Nautlius ?? and Item_Pet ??? You must be a world-class cryptographer.

 

 

My actually work is somewhat related to cryptography actually, but in this case I simply went to "\Pillars of Eternity\PillarsOfEternity_Data\assetbundles" (where exactly Pillars of Eternity is installed will vary depending on whether you use Steam or GOG or other services, and I guess this will be different in Linux) then searched various key words from the items you asked about, specifically "Blighted", "Iverra", "Amaia" and "grammon" (nautilus didn't work due to the typo). Usually only one file will appear, but occasionally several will and you'll have to take an educated guess as to which one is the item (or try them all in game to find out).

 

Leaving aside the issues caused by excessively slow Save / Load times, I wasn’t exaggerating when I said I thought the game tough. I found PoE a pretty difficult game with which to get to grips - both in how to understand its rationale and how to control the NPCs in every confrontation.

 

 

Pillars is a game that rewards experience I think. My first ever play through was on normal, and it was also probably my toughest. I then ran a few on hard and found that since I had learnt the sorts of things various enemies were weak against they were a lot easier (also hard isn't all that much of a step up from normal). Finally I started playing on PotD and, whilst the early game is definitely tougher, the knowledge you gain from having played on easier difficulties serves you well in dealing with the higher difficulty.

 

As for NPC control, that definitely is something that is trickier in "real time with pause" than turn based. I solve it by going a little bonkers with the pause button but I know a lot of people don't have my patience for that sort of micro.

 

My posting reflected uneasy misgivings that I’d been agonising too much about the stats. There was so little to guide a new player on how best to develop their party. Obviously wearing something that gave a +1 boost to intelligence might be helpful but as I didn’t know the intelligence scale, it was unclear how useful it actually would be. If there were a scale of 20 it would be a +5% increase etc

 

 

I think that's fairly normal. It took me a while to come to terms with the fact that, unlike in Baldur's Gate, a Fighter could run with a Might of 16 and not be crippled compared to one with a Might of 18. Once I realised this though it made me very happy, as I've always hated builds with dumped stats (e.g. a Rogue with Intellect 3 say) so knowing that I wasn't crippling my builds by being less extreme was nice.

 

As a general rule of thumb, all bonuses from increasing Attributes scale linearly. For example, each point of Might above 10 increases your damage caused by 3% and gives you +1 to your Fortitude Defence. I am fairly certain that, if you open up your character sheet it will tell you exactly what bonuses each Attribute gives your characters, and a bit of simple division will allow you to work out what each point above 10 gives.

 

In Chapter 3 I began to apply upgrades to unique items. It was obvious that “Superb” was better that “Exceptional” but just how much better would that make the item? Perhaps an upgrade such as “Of Freezing” or “Slaying Beasts” might be preferable. With little comprehension of the nuances involved (and being unaware of what lay ahead), I found this area a bewildering bit of guesswork.

I’m struggling with angst that “its all wrong” and earlier decisions will make it impossible (or extremely difficult) to finish the game.

 

 

As a general rule of thumb, the first enchantments you should get for a weapon are the "quality" ones (fine, exceptional, superb etc.). Then, if your weapon still has sufficient enchantment slots free (most will) get an elemental lash (which element is up: my advice would be to either go Corrode or, if your character has one of the elemental damage talents like "Secrets of Rime" then go with the same element as that). After that, go with whatever you want that will fit.

 

I wouldn't worry about not being able to finish the game. The difficulty curve of PoE is such that the hardest part is the early game, and it gets easier as you go. On Normal, any full party should be able to defeat the final boss. It might take a few attempts but it certainly shouldn't be impossible.

 

 

I note your comment about reputation not affecting shop prices. Maintaining a good reputation would probably lower shop prices – Wrong! (Only after fulfilling a quest for a Copperlane shopkeeper, do you recive any lowered prices). Even in an upgraded stronghold, I was expected by my employees to pay a 750% mark-up price on their stock.

 

 

Yeah, in my second play through I decided not to sell anything until I got maximum reputation with Gilded Vale with the hope of getting the best prices possible. Turns out it was a waste of time. The only way to lower shop prices are the quests like you mention. That said, by the mid to late game you'll likely be swimming in cash if, like me, you're a compulsive looter. By the end of some of my play throughs the innkeeper in Gilded Vale has hundreds of Xaurip Spears  :biggrin: 

 

 

Shopkeepers are a weak area. Their stock didn’t varied nor was it replenished and in most cases wasn’t upgraded. I strongly suspect that the sheer volume of spears, shields and armour I had sold to the stronghold shopkeeper (which he then retained) was a probable cause of the game becoming slower. Surely “junk level” items could be withdrawn from play once the party leaves the area.

 

 

That might be the case actually yeah. I always pick a junk shop to sell all my junk to (usually the Gilded Vale innkeeper) to reduce clutter in shops I actually care about.

 

Actually, in PoE2 I'd prefer it if normal quality gear was not dropped by enemies since, after the very early game, it just serves as inventory clutter.

 

I did attempt to stack sequential actions for characters but nearly always needed to break out of the planned order due to something else that took precedence.

 

 

I never issue more than one command per character at a time. Combat starts and I issue initial commands. After a second or two I'll pause to override some of those commands if they're no longer appropriate. I then pause combat periodically to issue new commands when necessary.

 

 

The game refuses to allow characters to receive buffs after the battle starts?? Talk about being unprepared. Surely you should permit some buffs before a character takes an enormous hit?

 

 

Do you mean "before that battle starts"? If I understand correctly, Obsidian wanted to avoid the somewhat ridiculous prebuffing that occurred in Infinity Engine games, where you'd spend upwards of a minute before important fights casting a whole range of buffs in a precise order to ensure maximum duration for them all. Whilst perhaps more realistic, it was incredibly tedious.

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josh sawyer's jnpc contribution to poe is pallegina.  am simple stating a fact 'bout the link 'tween josh and the npc paladin with unique special abilities which make her more efficacious as a striker paladin than any player created paladin can aspire to be.  draw what conclusions you will.  nevertheless, be it as a ranged or melee combatant, pallegina can be a comical powerful addition to your party.

 

Jnpc?

 

But yeah, once you realise just how powerful Wrath of the Five Suns is, it does make other Paladins feel a bit weak. Later into the game its power wanes a little (enemies tend to have higher DR and iirc each ball has to overcome DR so it's affected disproportionately by DR0, and the joy that is Sacred Immolation appears, bringing other Paladins back up to parity (yes Pallegina has it too, but her lower Might and Intellect mean that she won't be quite as good with it as most player build Paladins).

 

That said, I quite like Pallegina. Her character is woefully underdeveloped in the game, but the little that does appear makes me hope we'll see her return in PoE2 if, for no other reason, to give her a proper chance to be developed.

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My only real complaint is not being able to prep for a battle when I spot an enemy. This whole spot enemy vs start combat delineation doesn't make sense in my world. Well, sort of, but not how is affects game mechanics. I do get that as a way to balance the whole BG and eve NWN, IIRC, way of buffing before a fight. But really, if I see an enemy and want to engage I would fully expect to be able to at least drink a potion or cast a quick protection spell before engaging. And isn't engagement a way to balance the whole pre-combat buffing thing anyway? I mean, obviously it is harder to sneak when I am casting a spell or drinking a potion, so engagement kicks in to inhibit further buffs. And when I am not in combat mode the buffs deplete faster. Seems there is a better way.

 

I still don't get the cipher class. I may be thinking too hard about this one. Sort of also follows my confusion about Watcher special abilities. With so many undead I am uncertain about those spells/abilities efficacy. Seems like fkcing with an enemy's mind or soul when they are already "dead" is useless. But I probably don't understand the thinking here.

 

Otherwise, I do like the combat mechanics over the BG engine. I feel like I can actually use the high level spells before getting nerfed. In BG I always felt like by the time my spell casters got off a high level spell everyone on one side or the other was already dead.

 

I do wish the important battles scaled a little better. After the expansions, by the time I got to the end game at max level, Thaos was pretty easy to take down, even when adjusting to "hard" when prompted by the game when it thinks I am a high level. Or maybe level cap should vary depending on party size. Nah, that won't work, either. I'm not usually  fan of level caps, but so much of the game gets too easy by the time I get to certain points in either the core game or the expansions. I also waited until max level (post expansions) to take out the final boss in the endless dungeon's quest and that was pretty painless. So obviously I waited too long to fight that battle.

 

Or maybe there is a better order to handle the WM1, WM2, and core game?

 

There was/is a lot of little, but important. nuances to get used to coming from other game systems (like the whole slew of disabling conditions that each seem to need their own counter spells—charmed, confusion, dazed, stunned, etc, Oy!). But it is enjoyable all the same.

 

Joe

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