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I think its a shame because the setting provides a much simpler and cleaner out for them if they want to get around these problems but also let you continue the story and import your character; just have us play PoE 2 as the watchers next reincarnation. It is such an obvious solution they must definitely have thought of it and rejected it.

Is it though? Surely you'd have to skip a large amount of years, making it very difficult for the Watcher's decisions to have any impact.

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I’d go with an idea that you’ve got your power sealed and gradually break the seals. So you go from “Seals: 18” to “Seals: 17” to “Seals: 16,” etc. Don’t mention “level” anywhere. Bonus points for every seal to have a name (dunno, psychology terms or something).

Pillars of Bugothas

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I think starting again at level 1 was the best decision gameplay wise and from the newbie players point of view. As long as we level up for the first 3 or 4 levels quickly, I dont mind at all.

 

And the way that happens (a god eating part of your soul) makes sense with the worlds lore. You can like that lore or not, but it makes sense with the lore.

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I was a little disappointed to find out we'll be starting again at level 1, but I was also really excited to still be playing the Watcher. I miss the narrative continuation and consistency of playing the same character that's been stripped out for some other franchises (I'm looking at you, Dragon Age). That's what I truly adored about the Baldur's Gate series.

Personally, character development in the traditional sense (i.e. the narrative sense) is far more important to me than keeping levels and gear, as I can get those back. I'd rather have a character who already has a place in the world and a connection to some of the people they're traveling with - it makes my character a part of the on-going narrative, rather than a clumsy player stand-in.

 

I'm more upset (though unsurprised) about the presumed loss of the unmentioned companions. I'll miss you, Hiravias. ;(

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What greater cause is there, than the jingling of coin in my pocket?

 

...the jingling of coin in your pocket.

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Seriously, though.
"Written into a corner"? That's how RPGs have worked since the dawn of time. A few got around it (creating other issues in the process), but resetting the numbers to level one should be nothing shocking. It's just numbers, a genre convention. Sure, they could have avoided that - by having the PoE1 level cap at 5 or so (like what BG1 did). Not fun, but apparently better narrative or whatever.
It's not as if the reincarnation of Eothas were only there to "explain" the level drop. That's a nice bonus. The deus in statua* came first, using it to hang some drapes over the levelling was nice to have.
And having your soul taken away is, in the game world's terms, as good an explanation as waiting for the next Watcher.
I really don't understand the artificial fuss about something completely normal for sequels.

* in statua for "within the statue" (answering the question "in which place?"); in statuam for "into the statue" (answering "in which direction?").

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Therefore I have sailed the seas and come

To the holy city of Byzantium. -W.B. Yeats

 

Χριστός ἀνέστη!

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I suppose one argument FOR keeping your level is that I assume we'll have to face off against Eothas at some point?

 

you have a whole new game with 18 levels (as of stretch goal nearly beaten) to reach this giant adras statue level, I dont see a problem there

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Just a thought that popped up, but what if the "Watcher" in Pillars of Eternity was just simply a "Soul" inside a "Host body", and in Deadfire we're going to play another "Host body", but the same "Watcher Soul". That could explain Level 1 a lot... but it wouldn't explain Pallegina, Aloth and Eder's level drop (Unless those are attainable companions at a later stage).

​I could see how Eder could be a high-level prologue/aid character early in the game, who drops out of the party because he gets captured/has to do a quest on his own or whatnot, and then he joins late game (Meaning, he'd be Level 14-16 at the beginning, and be a sort of "Support" character for the early prologue game).

​Meanwhile you'd find other characters along the way, getting the new ones first, and Aloth, Eder, and Pallegina somewhere in the mid-game, maybe?

​EDIT: What if the Eothas titan actually kills​ the host body, and your Watcher soul transfers to some individual in the Deadfire Archipelago? And depending on what race you choose you'd start in a different place? :p yeah, a little bit too much but still, would be pretty cool. Would explain a lot too. Then you could start with a Level 14-16 Character and​ separate from Pallegina/Eder/Aloth early, only to meet up with them later (Suikoden 1 & 2 does this a lot).

​Wouldn't be a great design choice though, because I enjoyed them a lot in Pillars of Eternity and would want to continue playing with them too xD (like I believe a lot of others would want to too)

​Then again, I also recall some games where you get Main Companions as Temporary Companions (I.E. they only join for a short time throughout the game, until permanently joining later). If you'd get a new "Host body", and meeting the old companions, explaining to them who you are would be a bit of an ordeal (and having to gain their trust). Eder/Aloth/Pallegina could be all "How dare you pretend to be the Lord!?".

​Note: I'm only bringing this up because I wanted a Pillars sequel to have alternate starting points (wishful thinking), and this would do it and make most sense (but as a design decision it might be a bit convulated or complex).

​EDIT: This on the Fig campaign though:

 

"Eothas has returned. The god of light and rebirth was thought dead, but he now inhabits the stone titan that sat buried under your keep, Caed Nua, for millennia. Ripping his way out of the ground, he destroyed your stronghold and left you at the brink of death. To save your soul, you must track down the wayward god and demand answers - answers which could throw mortals and the gods themselves into chaos.
 

Your hunt takes you to the Deadfire Archipelago. Located even farther east than the colonies of the Eastern Reach, Deadfire comprises hundreds of islands spanning thousands of miles - ranging from lush tropics to barren deserts. Many of these lands have never been charted, while others are inhabited by rich native cultures and a new wave of colonial settlers."

 

​Simplified but that should explain "Level 1".

Edited by Osvir
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I like starting from the beginning in CRPGs. Fighting off those rats and weak bandits fills me with determination. ;-)

If it's not rats and weak bandits but interesting, plot related enemies, all the better.

Also I prefer the crawl to the point, where the protagonist is actually able to defeat a powerful enemy.
Starting in a world full of epic monsters and demigods all around you and seeing eye to eye with them is less fun to me.

And we were pretty badass already after PoE + WM.

 

 

I'm sure there is a reasonable explanation, why the Watcher and his companions aren't the superkith  they used to be.

 

Also, getting that rock to the top of the mountain AGAIN shows what real heroes are made of! :-D

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(Slowpoke awakens) What happens with god granted talents now?

Probably gonna be sucked away as well, just like it was in BG2 when the villain drained most of protagonist's soul. 

Damn, PoE2 plot's so familiar :)

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So, I started finishing off White March 2 (because I never got around to it) and I just did Lord whathisdace's quest where he tries to swipe the keep from the Watcher with his amry and stuff.

 

And throughout that quest I was thinking "probably should just have let him have it and then I could have stood back and had a good laugh...!"

Edited by Aotrs Commander
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So, I started finishing off White March 2 (because I never got around to it) and I just did Lord whathisdace's quest where he tries to swipe the keep from the Watcher with his amry and stuff.

 

And throughout that quest I was thinking "probably should just have let him have it and then I could have stood back and had a good laugh...!"

I honestly wanted an option to do this. My first characters, and many others, are usually more explorers and drifters than the type to have a permanent home, much less be Lady of a castle. 

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Huh, they're not even gonna explain why companions gonna drop in levels as well:

http://jesawyer.tumblr.com/post/156540200006/hi-josh-as-we-already-know-at-the-beginning-of

True, but he does kind of make a good point.  They really don't explain why it works that way in the first game either :p.

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Yeah, if you could stomach weathered veterans like Sagani, weirdos like Grieving Mother, castoff priests like Durance, etc. all magically being at the level you are when you find them...

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the deus ex statuary is not a big deal to Gromnir. honest, most scifi and fantasy places great demands 'pon us to suspend disbelief. this is not a serious issue from our pov. even so, am not seeing why it were a necessary hurdle to need overcome. if obsidian wanted to start us at level 1, then give us a new level 1 protagonist. could keep much the same if developers genuine wished to do so. make watcher unavailable, but have the new protagonist get caught up in the misfortune at cad nua. same starting point at least.

 

HA! Good Fun!

I like this idea- new PC interacting with characters from previous game would allow so interesting commentary on choices made in first game

Edited by jones092201@gmail.com
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Yeah, if you could stomach weathered veterans like Sagani, weirdos like Grieving Mother, castoff priests like Durance, etc. all magically being at the level you are when you find them...

Yes, but that was ok when you first meet them. But after that you know they've all leveled up and now in PoE2 they're back to level 1 somehow. Explanation given only for the protagonist. Is it too difficult to put them in the stronghold as well, or write a few lines of text in their dialogue as to what happened to them?

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I can't ignore the fact that starting from level 1 allows Obsidian to reuse the same character progression system from PoE with little to no required rework, potentially lowering the development cost and time of the game, and when this is justified with a seemingly contrived story event, it has the outward appearance of cut corners.

 

Though I do agree with the others who said that the change itself would be less grating if we were playing an entirely new character or a reincarnation, rather than the actual Watcher from the first game. But even that would not explain how the returning companions took a dive in the combat effectiveness department.

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I think they have missed a trick here, with a new character they would have much more freedom story wise. The old companions need not be the new companions but they could still be in the game. It would be awesome for a noob to meet up with Eder, who is now an established senior member of the church of Eothas, or Aloth who is the head of the Leaden Key. They wouldn't be companions, rather important npcs involved in the plot. They could hand out quests, be mentors, have an important part in the plot, even be a rival. Point is they would have many more choices with a new character. However from what I've heard from the devs that's not going to happen any time soon. Pity, but probably time to move on and find something else about the sequel to bitch about.

 

There's always SOMETHING!

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"Those who look upon gods then say, without even knowing their names, 'He is Fire. She is Dance. He is Destruction. She is Love.' So, to reply to your statement, they do not call themselves gods. Everyone else does, though, everyone who beholds them."
"So they play that on their fascist banjos, eh?"
"You choose the wrong adjective."
"You've already used up all the others.”

 

Lord of Light

 

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I agree with others that maybe it would have been better to have a new character, but I also think that they would have been leaving the Watcher's story unresolved if they had: while he/she manages to sleep after getting their answers from Thaos, they still have many questions and issues to finish.  I did suggest on a thread quite some time back that maybe instead of going straight into Pillars 2 they could maybe do separate side adventures with different characters in other parts of the world like the Deadfire, Vailian Republics, etc.  This would then give them a chance to flesh out the world further and establish certain things about it that would give us a firmer grounding in the world before then doing Pillars 2 as an epic-level adventure (as the PC at the end of Pillars 1 is potentially at level 16 and ready for it) where they perhaps enter the domains of the gods to answer the Ultimate Questions. 

 

Of course, I don't know whether people would take to other games in the setting yet and people may not want to wait potentially many years of games to resolve their first character's adventures (and potentially never get to resolve it, as things could happen in that time that would stop Pillars 2 from coming about).

"That rabbit's dynamite!" - King Arthur, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail

"Space is big, really big." - Douglas Adams

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I can't ignore the fact that starting from level 1 allows Obsidian to reuse the same character progression system from PoE with little to no required rework, potentially lowering the development cost and time of the game, and when this is justified with a seemingly contrived story event, it has the outward appearance of cut corners.

 

Though I do agree with the others who said that the change itself would be less grating if we were playing an entirely new character or a reincarnation, rather than the actual Watcher from the first game. But even that would not explain how the returning companions took a dive in the combat effectiveness department.

 

Ultimately we all know that levels are an abstraction anyhow for the "gameist" part of an RPG.  I'm probably more bugged by the narrative railroading to accomplish the level drain than being reset to level 1. 

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I can't ignore the fact that starting from level 1 allows Obsidian to reuse the same character progression system from PoE with little to no required rework, potentially lowering the development cost and time of the game, and when this is justified with a seemingly contrived story event, it has the outward appearance of cut corners.

 

Though I do agree with the others who said that the change itself would be less grating if we were playing an entirely new character or a reincarnation, rather than the actual Watcher from the first game. But even that would not explain how the returning companions took a dive in the combat effectiveness department.

 

Ultimately we all know that levels are an abstraction anyhow for the "gameist" part of an RPG.  I'm probably more bugged by the narrative railroading to accomplish the level drain than being reset to level 1. 

 

 

I don't necessarily disagree. I suppose it's up to the designers of each game how abstract or literal to the narrative they want character progression to be. Some games like Mass Effect and The Witcher treat levels as if they had very little to no bearing on your character's story, as even at level 1 you are an incredibly capable person. But in games like Baldur's Gate level is hugely responsible for what enemies and challenges your character can face, and therefore there it plays a larger part in the story. E.g. if your character is so incapable starting out that they cannot even survive an encounter with a hungry wolf, it's hard to argue that level isn't part of the narrative.

 

Though I think you're right in that PoE might be closer to the "level is an abstract" end of the scale.

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