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Heijoushin

Society for the Promotion of Trash Mob Welfare

Trash mobs  

123 members have voted

  1. 1. How should Trash Mobs be handled in PoE2?

    • No trash mobs. Just boss & scripted encounters
      4
    • Only a small amount of trash mobs
      53
    • Same as PoE1 is fine
      61
    • Moaar! I ha' not yet wet m'blade!!
      5


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Well, for PoE they decreased the amount of "trash" fights around patch 3.0, didn't they? I'm replaying the game right now and, if I were to look at the IE games for comparison, I feel it's no worse than what we got in BG or IWD and nowhere near as bad as IWD2. And I'm fine with that. That said, based on the devs' comments, I expect PoE2 to be closer to BG2 in this regard and have less trash fights and more unqiue / scripted encounters.

 

Edit: and yes, I agree that TWM was much better in terms of encounter design, though I don't think the overall number of fights per area was any lower than post-3.0 PoE.

Edited by Lorfean

Shadow Thief of the Obsidian Order


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I voted for slightly less but let me explain... I wouldn't mind lots of 'trash mobs' if they are part of the story and it feels like they fit into the world in an active sense, like they belong in that environment and are actually *doing* something and interacting with the world, moving around. For example, if you get a quest from a town mayor to clear out an abandoned mine full of xaurips, I wouldn't consider all those xaurips to be trash mobs, especially if they were working the mine and filling up carts with ore and such. And if the workers fled while the guards attacked you, and then eventually you find the boss foreman etc. That is not trash mobs, that is a compelling game encounter.

 

What would be useless trash mobs Is when you were going through a wilderness area and to get through it, you had to fight lots of different small groups of xaurips, and each group was just standing there in a circle with the xaurips staring at each other and patiently waiting for someone to come attack them. And there was no real reason xaurips belonged there in the woods, they weren't doing anything to interact with the world like forage for food, or raiding and robbing travellers on the road, etc. They just stand there, in perfectly sized groups that are perfectly balanced to make them the perfectly appropriate challenge for the X number of characters you control. What a coincidence! And how boring.

 

Unfortunately most RPG games, including pillars 1, often handle most 'trash mobs' the latter way. I would vote to greatly reduce that, except perhaps for the occasional wild beast you meet in the wilderness. Which ought to be 50% likely to flee in terror rather than just suicide against a well armed group of adventurers. Even if it was powerful enough to take you on. So if you want a fight with trash mobs all the time, you would sometimes have to actively pursue them and start the fight yourself.

Edited by amazeing4art
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"Is no reason for for genuine trash mobs"... the reason is called fun. Just because you don't find it fun doesn't mean that others don't. The key of course, like everything, is moderation / frequency. I don't propose that the game is littered with trash (pun intended), but similarly I would be saddened to see a game without it either...

If they are talking about reducing them it's because many people complained about it not being fun. Anyway we are here discussing our personal opinions, so we could use the same line of reasoning with you. "Just because you find it fun doesn't mean it is". The thing here is to explain why you find it fun.

 

The problem with trash mobs in PoE was, in my opinion, that most of the times you fighted one or two types of encounters and after that it was the same over and over again. I don't know about the exact number of combats, but I found that in BG2 almost every combat was interesting while many combats on PoE felt like bureaucracy.

As for Od Nua, I think they got it right there because it was the whole point: a "classic" dungeon with dozens of encounters and some puzzles.

I would say that the ideal for me would be reducing the overal trash mobs in the "core" game and keeping more combat oriented zones.

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I am personally all for doing away with "trash mobs" (almost) entirely - with the proviso that "trash mobs" equals "uninteresing, easy fights." Hell, I try to avoid them in pen-and-paper where I can (it's not always possible, as I predomiantly use Paizo adventure paths these days (mind you, it takes so long to play one we're just starting a second after the first half of one, and those are the earliest, and I think the got better!). I made the "mistake" of running the 3.5 version of Lost Caverns of Sojcanth once. Sure, it killed a few sessions, but as it was basically nothing but 3.5 versions of AD&D monsters without any consideration for adaption, it was nothing but trash mobs (i.e. things that the PCs cake-walked - hell the party's princiaple fightertype broke the game by having level-appropriate equipment and an armour class most things couldn't touch) and even I was bored and I was running the damn thing.

 

(They also don't work from a resource-management aspect, since in my experience - both in CRPG and table-top - if the players decide it's a trash mob fight, they don't bother to spend any resources. the wizards will just stand about and twiddle their thumbs or eveyr auto-attacks or something.)

 

Encounters where some attempt at individualising them, I wouldn't count as trash mobs. (E.g., some of Xaurips in WM2, for example - the one in the mines where half of them are on a balcony shooting down was not a truly hard encounter, but it was much more interesting than the one further up with just a cave of them).

 

I will agree that you want some easy encounters early on (either in the game or as  gateway encounter to a ne area to show the dangers of some new special attgack enemy) for a learning curve, but even then, I wouldn't entirely classify that as a trash mob (nor an excuse to have "open door, kill monsters," come to that).

 

Tides (which I won't get to playing for a bit) supposedly did away with them as the price for wanting to do turn-based, because that was pretty much the popular statement; otherwise turn-based games get very grindy and dull (because you CAN'T blitz through them laughing). (See: a ridiculous number of JRPGs et al which I have never finished because I got fed-up of fighting the same fight slowly all the time.)

 

 

 

But the general concept of "some monsters plonked in a room/clearing as a fight, repeated" can go die in a fire, as far as I'm concerned. That gets repetative after the first time.

 

 

 

I mean, if you want to splatter things while laughing, you could do that by using difficulty settings (saying that as someone who never steps above normal on virtually any game ever).

Edited by Aotrs Commander
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I read an interesting post about this matter in the rpgcodex forum.

felipepe:

"The (lack of) Encounter Design

Here's were things get really ugly. For all the talk Sensuki did against the engagement system, it didn't bother me much. The real problem here is the encounter design. It's extremely poor.

People complain that most battles you just send a tank to engage their melee fighters and have the rest of the party attack them. That's true, but mostly because you rarely face anything that requires a different tactic. There's no zerg-rush of weak enemies overwheling your tank, no ogre doing a pincer attack inside a corridor, no archers in hard-to-reach places, poison-resistant enemies inside swamps, battles inside infernal traps, NOTHING! The only ambush you'll face the entire game is in the tutorial! What happened?"
I have to agree with him, the lack of interesting encounter designs are enormous. In the Dozens quarters there is an Orlan adventurer that you can read his soul, he has an amazing story to share, the story describes how he escaped an encounter with an ogre in a corridor, it was a marvellous story, I read it 3 times and I was eager to experience something like that in the game, but it never happened.

"It's all so limited that the role of environments in PoE is binary: either you are in open areas where you must protect your squishy characters, or in tight areas where you can have your tank block the enemies while the rest of the party goes pew-pew."
Unfortunately that describes 90% of the encounters in PoE1...

"As result, battles in PoE are more memorable due to their context (a lone powerful bear early in game, a big dragon, another big dragon, assaulting a fortress head on) than for being actual interesting fights. The hardest enemy in the game, the boss of the Endless Paths, is such a dumb, cheesy encounter you wonder if the devs were trying to make something cool or just going "heh, doubt you'll beat this, grognards!". 
Again... I have to agree with him, I can't remember any fight where I had to position my team in an intelligent and tactical manner, the only fight I remember doing that was against the Adra Dragon, and it was the only fight that I didn't wanted to do that, I wanted to fight the dragon head on, my PC is a fighter I wanted to block some fire breaths, to actually fight the dragon, but what I got was a fight where the dragon can one shot my tank with almost 160 deflection... then I searched in the forums for an explanation, I did find a way to kill the dragon I had to use glyphs and cc spells and that was the way to beat any hard fight in the game, some of the bounties in WM II, those Monks in WM II... everything could be destroyed with glyphs and cc spells.
Oh yes, if someone knows a way to kill the dragons without the use of cc and glyphs I would like to know.

"Overall, the only fights you'll have to put more effort into and occasionally stop to rethink your tactics owe this to a single effect: Charm.
Yep...

IMO a game can be made with only well designed encounters or scrippted ones, Dark Souls is a good example, every single encounter in that game is designed or scrippted you don't have a single trash mob without an objective in that game.
PoE has something good going towards it, the combat, for me the combat is very, very good - well I don't know if it will keep it good with only 5 party members - but the team has to be more creative, BUT a good bunch of xaurips to kill is always good, just keep them interesting.

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People complain that most battles you just send a tank to engage their melee fighters and have the rest of the party attack them. That's true, but mostly because you rarely face anything that requires a different tactic. There's no zerg-rush of weak enemies overwheling your tank, no ogre doing a pincer attack inside a corridor, no archers in hard-to-reach places, poison-resistant enemies inside swamps, battles inside infernal traps, NOTHING! The only ambush you'll face the entire game is in the tutorial! What happened?"

 

I read that, and all I can think is that whoever is saying it (a) hasn't played Pillars since before patch 2.0 and (b) hasn't played on PotD. You absolutely can't send your tank in and have the rest of your party engage the enemy with no concerns post 2.0; anyone who has done the second floor of the Endless Paths on PotD (or even just the wolf encounter at Magran's Fork) knows there are absolutely zerg rushes; and the comment about there being no archers in hard to reach places is simply rubbish on any difficulty.

 

"As result, battles in PoE are more memorable due to their context (a lone powerful bear early in game, a big dragon, another big dragon, assaulting a fortress head on) than for being actual interesting fights. The hardest enemy in the game, the boss of the Endless Paths, is such a dumb, cheesy encounter you wonder if the devs were trying to make something cool or just going "heh, doubt you'll beat this, grognards!".

 

Okay yeah, whoever posted this hasn't played since before patch 2.0. Some of their criticisms are valid, but they are valid for a game that no longer exists.

Edited by JerekKruger
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I played after 2.0 and I have to say, at least in the hard difficult, all I had to do was charging the enemy with my tank, and like I already said to you, I had 0 deaths so far. I'll get a new GPU this year and will play the game in the PoTD diffcult, let's see the difference.

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I played after 2.0 and I have to say, at least in the hard difficult, all I had to do was charging the enemy with my tank, and like I already said to you, I had 0 deaths so far. I'll get a new GPU this year and will play the game in the PoTD diffcult, let's see the difference.

 

The difference between Hard and Easy is tiny compared to the difference between Hard and PotD. If you enjoy a challenge then you'll have fun :)

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I played after 2.0 and I have to say, at least in the hard difficult, all I had to do was charging the enemy with my tank, and like I already said to you, I had 0 deaths so far. I'll get a new GPU this year and will play the game in the PoTD diffcult, let's see the difference.

 

The difference between Hard and Easy is tiny compared to the difference between Hard and PotD. If you enjoy a challenge then you'll have fun :)

 

But it doesn't make any sense... you are basically saying that if I want to have a well designed encounter I have to play on PotD? Because, a challenge encounter and well designed encounter are not, necessarily, the same.

 

An ogre in a corridor can be more challeging than 5 powrfull ogres in an open field.

Edited by molotov.

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But it doesn't make any sense, you are basically saying that if you want to have a well designed encounter you have to play on PotD?

 

No, I'm saying that there definitely are zerg rush encounters on PotD. I honestly can't remember much about lower difficulties because I haven't played on them in a long time.

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But it doesn't make any sense, you are basically saying that if you want to have a well designed encounter you have to play on PotD?

 

No, I'm saying that there definitely are zerg rush encounters on PotD. I honestly can't remember much about lower difficulties because I haven't played on them in a long time.

 

Yes, there are zerg rush even in hard mode, but I can't entirely disagree with him just because he stated one thing wrong.

 

A good example of a well designed encounter in PoE1 is that fight in the elevator in WM II, holy ****, that fight was difficult and it was just because of the design.

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Yes, there are zerg rush even in hard mode, but I can't entirely disagree with him just because he stated one thing wrong.

 

Oh encounter design could certainly be improved, I just find posts like his annoying since it's clear he hasn't played the game since before 2.0, and a lot has improved since then.

 

A good example of a well designed encounter in PoE1 is that fight in the elevator in WM II, holy ****, that fight was difficult and it was just because of the design.

 

 

And yet I very much doubt the person you quoted has ever played that encounter, yet he still feels qualified to say "encounter design in PoE is boring".

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Yes, there are zerg rush even in hard mode, but I can't entirely disagree with him just because he stated one thing wrong.

 

Oh encounter design could certainly be improved, I just find posts like his annoying since it's clear he hasn't played the game since before 2.0, and a lot has improved since then.

 

A good example of a well designed encounter in PoE1 is that fight in the elevator in WM II, holy ****, that fight was difficult and it was just because of the design.

 

 

And yet I very much doubt the person you quoted has ever played that encounter, yet he still feels qualified to say "encounter design in PoE is boring".

 

He finished the game, isn't he qualified to give his opinion? I understand what you are saying, he didn't experienced the entire game thus he don't have enough knowlodge, but the majority of players don't make more than one playthrought, if that was the feeling that PoE1 gave to him that means something is wrong with the encounter design.

Don't get me wrong, I loved the combat in PoE1 so I was completely fine with using the same spells over and over again, but I don't think that is very appealing... you can argue that using the same spell over and over again was my choice, yes it was but the game never punished me for it...

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How about an Easter egg consisting of a mob of trash blights? Ignore enough beggars and you get trashed down a side alley.


"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

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I don't think some of you guys realize that felipepepe (yup, it's 3 times 'pe') made his post before 2.0/WM existed.

I don't think there's a problem with expressing an opinion before a game gets all expansions/DLCs/patches.


Vancian =/= per rest.

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I don't think some of you guys realize that felipepepe (yup, it's 3 times 'pe') made his post before 2.0/WM existed.

I don't think there's a problem with expressing an opinion before a game gets all expansions/DLCs/patches.

 

I didn't realise that no. In which case it's largely correct.

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I've asked Josh on his blog if fewer trash mobs would lead to a reduction in combat frequency. Here's his answer.

 

 

A little less frequent overall with more emphasis on better setups/scenarios for each encounter.  We’re really trying to encourage the area and system designers to think about their environments and enemy types more as well as considering the role of destructible objects (e.g. summoning totems, barrels of gunpowder, barricades) on their encounters.

Neither I nor Bobby want to get rid of patrollers and the occasional small mob.  They can be interesting wild cards in other encounters, small stealth obstacles, and generally shift the pacing from major encounter/major encounter/major encounter every few rooms.

Edited by mumbogumshoe
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I've asked Josh on his blog if fewer trash mobs would lead to a reduction in combat frequency. Here's his answer.

 

 

A little less frequent overall with more emphasis on better setups/scenarios for each encounter.  We’re really trying to encourage the area and system designers to think about their environments and enemy types more as well as considering the role of destructible objects (e.g. summoning totems, barrels of gunpowder, barricades) on their encounters.

Neither I nor Bobby want to get rid of patrollers and the occasional small mob.  They can be interesting wild cards in other encounters, small stealth obstacles, and generally shift the pacing from major encounter/major encounter/major encounter every few rooms.

 

Seems like they want to maintain a good balance. If WM is any indication, I think they will do fine.

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I always have time to kill some xaurips.

  and take their spears

 

 

I like spears

They should hide a single, awesome, xaurip spear (+30% attack speed, +5DR bypass, etc etc) somewhere in the game that would be dropped amid one of the many trash mobs.  I wonder how many people would notice it vs. 'click' to mop up all them spears.


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I always have time to kill some xaurips.

  and take their spears

 

 

I like spears

 

At the end of most my playthroughs the Black Hound Inn in Gilded Vale is the proud owner of a few hundred of those spears  :biggrin:

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I always have time to kill some xaurips.

  and take their spears

 

 

I like spears

 

At the end of most my playthroughs the Black Hound Inn in Gilded Vale is the proud owner of a few hundred of those spears  :biggrin:

 

Makes you wonder what they plan to do with them that they were willing to buy so many...


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