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Hi all,

 

I am considering buying PoE, but I have a rather specific and somewhat inconsistent taste in games, so I am doing some research in order to decide whether or not it's for me. (I don't doubt that objectively it's a great game, it just might not be for me.)

 

  1. AFAIK the official lore for Eora only covers an area the size of Spain, and the game roughly represents Europe in the 16th Century. Is there much established lore of the wider world? Does the equivalents of the Middle East, China etc exist in this world? 
  2. For those of you who have also played Baldur's Gate (1 and 2), how does PoE compared in terms on difficulty, mechanical complexity and depth? Assuming we are comparing both games on the "standard difficulty" where neither players or enemies get bonuses or penalties. 
  3. Does the storyline give your main character a restricted or open backstory? For example in Icewind Dale, your entire party is entirely custom, whereas in the Witcher Series, you are playing an established and fixed protagonist, and Baldur's Gate and other games fit somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. 
  4. I am quite interested by the concept of Godlikes in this game, but I don't want to be constrained RP-wise by my choice of Godlike. I don't know how proactive the Gods are in this universe. From a lore perspective, does a Godlike's type determine his/her alignment? For example can a Death Godlike be technically "Good"?
  5. Is it viable/possible to build a Fighter/Mage type character who wears armour no heavier than Scale/Chain, but fights competently with melee weapons, augmented/protected magically.

That's all I can think of for now. Probably quite bizarre for somebody to ask such specific questions before they even buy the game... but I personally need to be immersed with the world of an RPG and understand the context of the story before I can dive into a game, because my characters don't have amnesia and aren't clueless about the only world they have known, so I can't be either.   :yes:

 

Thx in advance!

 

Hein

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1.  Yes.  The Dyrwood (where the game is set) was settled by the Aedyr Empire, you have the Vailian Republics to the south which was settled by Old Vailia, Readceras to the north which the Dyrwood has just recently had a war with, and other places that are mentioned but not directly tied to the Dyrwood, which you can choose your character to come from, such as The White that Wends, Rauatai, the Ixamitly Plains, Deadfire Archipelago (which is going to be the setting for the sequel).

2.  I'd say its more friendly to first time player (Baldur's Gate assumed an understanding of D&D 2nd edition that I don't think was easy for people who never played it to understand), but has more depth in character creation, more like 3rd edition D&D what with the talents and abilities.  You'll get some saying that it is too easy etc but I think it hits about right.

3.  Kinda inbetween I say.  You get to choose from a list where your character comes from and a background such as Hunter or Scholar (some backgrounds are restricted by place or origin, for instance you can only choose Explorer if your character is from the Deadfire Islands, the Living Lands, or the White that Wends).

4.  Godlikes are called such because they have certain qualities associated with certain gods and are believed to have been blessed by the gods (since they seem to spontaneously appear, born from normal parents, and are not actually descended from the gods, in fact most are sterile), but otherwise are like any other Folk.  Its not even clear if the gods actually do have anything to do with them, people just seem to assume that they do and the gods nod along.

5.  Multiclassing is not possible in Pillars (though it will be in the sequel), however it is more open to build classes like that.  Weapons and armour are not restricted by class, so you can build a Wizard as more of a frontliner: slap armour on them, learn buffing spells and stick a sword in their hand, and take the appropriate talents to make them more survivable.  Wizard tanks are actually quite popular.  If you want to stick to the ligher armours then I would suggest taking a shield as well, but I don't personally use wizards like that, prefering the classical approach, so take my suggestions with a grain of salt and listen to the ones who do build them like that more.

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

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2. definitely better game mechanics than BG/BG2. And a lot more freedom on how to build your character. A lot of things a viable even on the highest difficulty setting. 

 

5. Wizards can totally be played with any kind of armor and any kind of weapon. You can easily play a melee wizard in plate armor, wielding a two hander and also the wand swinging cliché wizard - and everything in between. It's not possible to multiclass, but wizards have a lot of awesome self buffs and also summoned weapons which let you have a lot of fun in melee. 

 

Have a look at those two exemplary wizard builds which are from opposite sides of the spectrum:

A tanky melee wizard: Bilestomper

A frail ranged wizard: Hurtstacker

 

Just to get an impression how different classes can be build - and still be fun to play.

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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Thanks for the responses above! Much appreciated.

 

Another question...

 

For a first time player, is it better to play with or without the White March DLC from a roleplaying narrative perspective. For example I did enjoy the expansion content in BG1 and BG2, but the extra stuff was somewhat detached from the main storyline, and the narrative was neater if you actually ignored Watcher's Keep and Ulgoth's Beard quests. 

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The expansions in PoE are not small sequels like with BG and BG2, but blend into the main game. WM I is for chars of lvl 8+ while WM II is for high lvl chars. It's totally cool to travel to the White March, do some quests and then return to the places of the main game, do some other stuff, then returning to WM and so forth.

I would recommend playing PoE with WM I & II. The expansions add some nice unique items and other neat stuff as well as three additional companions which you can use in the main game, too. The expansion really "expand" the game.

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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I'd add a couple of other things to the great BG/BG2 points mentioned so far.  Like those games, there is no level scaling so it is entirely possible to enter an area that is just too tough for your party at that particular point in time.  But unlike those games, there is only a finite amount of XP in the game because you can't generate new foes by resting.  In fact, you don't even get XP for defeating a foe (though there is a modest amount of XP you'll gain from time to time by advancing your bestiary).   

 

The other thing I would say is that you do NOT want to assume that PoE classes are exactly like their D&D counteroarts,  Priests are probably the strongest class in the game but are very weak if you use them the way you would a BG cleric.  Likewise druids, whose shapeshifting ability and call-lightning spell is nearly useless in BG/BG2 but quite strong in PoE.  As I think about it, the same could be said for wizards as staple spells like fireball and magic missile are notably weak in PoE while woefully inadequate BG/BG2 spells like grease are surprisingly strong in PoE, not to mention Kalakoth's which is vastly better than the already-strong Melf's minute meteors in BG/BG2. 

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By the way from a narrative perspective White Marsh 2 is pretty cool and doesn't have the same "pointless adventure" vibe as Tales of the Sword Coast. It's still unrelated to the main quest though.

 

Also, about difficulty : the Baldur's Gate series had an old school style of game design where things like fairness and balance didn't matter that much (for the record, I once got killed in BG by the weather. Just like that, stormy weather, struck by lightning, bang you're dead). You could die from a bad roll, but you could also cheese like crazy with stuff like offscreen fireballs, summons or pre battle buffs.

PoE doesn't have that. In PoE, the better you understand the game system, the less you die, with much less randomness and wackiness.

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