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Greetings,

 

When Pillars of Eternity 1 was announced, as a big fan of cRPGs I was very enthousiastic.

My favorite class has always been the mage, but alas, I found it to be not as fun as it could have been (and was in past D&D games).

 

The gameplay received a lot of attention towards class balance, even if it's exclusively a single-player experience. And so, the mage archetype was a lot simplified in my opinion and was restricted to a fireworks cannon. This time classes seem to be less restrictive and "locked". Well why not.

 

But will mages have invocations? Transmutations ? Can they transform themselves into pink rabbits? Others? Will they be able to transform a pink rabbit into an angry internet forumer? A pink forumer into an internet rabbit, maybe? .... or is it just about spamming fire/ice/sparks/stinky balls?

 

I searched around but did not found anything about that.

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I searched around but did not found anything about that.

 

That's because there are no mages in the game. Only wizards!

 

Kidding. No detailed info about any class whatsoever yet. Most probably we'll learn soon when the bi-week updates start.

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The POE1 wizard is a fireworks cannon? You've got single-target and area-effect damage (complete with friendly fire damage) crowd control, debuffs, and self buffs. Pretty much the Baldur's Gate mage, except you can use armor and a sword if you want. Where is this perception coming from? Did those spells just not seem worthwhile?

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Greetings,

 

When Pillars of Eternity 1 was announced, as a big fan of cRPGs I was very enthousiastic.

My favorite class has always been the mage, but alas, I found it to be not as fun as it could have been (and was in past D&D games).

 

The gameplay received a lot of attention towards class balance, even if it's exclusively a single-player experience. And so, the mage archetype was a lot simplified in my opinion and was restricted to a fireworks cannon. This time classes seem to be less restrictive and "locked". Well why not.

 

But will mages have invocations? Transmutations ? Can they transform themselves into pink rabbits? Others? Will they be able to transform a pink rabbit into an angry internet forumer? A pink forumer into an internet rabbit, maybe? .... or is it just about spamming fire/ice/sparks/stinky balls?

 

I searched around but did not found anything about that.

There are no Mages in Pillars of Eternity only wizards and they are not the same thing Wizards have to, at least, think about the number of spells they can do in one day, giving a little of tactical depth towards the role, mage is just a dumbed-down class, made for the public that can't handle the minimal of tactical thinking.

 

"...and was restricted to a fireworks cannon" "...or is it just about spamming fire/ice/sparks/stinky balls?" what? You have to elaborate more, give us some example of that happening.

 

The combat was Aloth easier with a mage and priest in your party, but I never spammed fire/ice/sparks/stinky balls like you said. I was using a really cool build on Aloth, I focused on crowd control and basic attacks, I, generally speaking, started the fight with a good petrified or slicken and then used a plethora of self buffs, Eldritch Aim, Merciless Gaze, Deleterious Alacrity of Motion, Kalakoth's Minor Blights and then I procceded to watch the enemy front line melting.

 

"But will mages have invocations?" What? In PoE 1 there are tons of builds focused on summoning weapons, and if you are talking about an actual summon like a elemental or something like that, the wizard can summon his phatom and some really strong tentacles to help in the fight.

"Can they transform themselves in pink rabbits? Others?" I don't think that they can do that to themselves but yes, you can transform others in PoE1, Form of the Helpless Beast, I just don't know why would you use this spell if you could just petrify the entire enemy team... well for some laughter perhaps?

 

I think that you just have to learn how to be a little more creative with your builds.

 

BUT I have to agree that it was difficult to not fall for the temptation of just spamming petrified, confusion and slicken for the entire fight... but that is a problem with the Wizard class in every game ever created...

 

 

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Oh, I think I have been a bit misunderstood. By mage, I meant the spellcasting dude, whatever his name is wizard, enchanter or warlock.

 

By spells,, it's not the usefulness I was talking about, but the "cool factor".

 

And I strongly disagree about the variety in Baldur's Gate.

You could invoke a dancing sword duelling with your enemies, make a door appear out of thin air that teleported you in another place, you could transform into a dragon!

Invocations were not limited to elementals and shades, but Ogres, djinns and devils. You could call the haunting spirits of a place to demand informations about your surroundings.

You could charm your oponents and then talk to them, you could even ****ing stop the time.

 

Nowadays, mages in games are all about bursts and buffs, where is all the cool stuff? The most iconic spell of mages (save the fireball) was Chicken transformation. How cool was that? I thought "cRPG" meant also that.

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Would be cool to see a wizard subclass that's a spell eater.  Basically he would emit an aura that devours any magic (friendly or otherwise) cast his way, ignoring its affects and fueling his own magic.  Make him more martial oriented, limit his spell pool to buffs and short/melee range attack spells.  For each spell devoured he gets one charge and each spell he has cost one charge to cast (regardless of level) so technically his casting would be limitless per encounter but would be dependent on being targeted with magic.  His big drawback is that the only magic that affects him is his own, so no team buffs or heals from priests. 

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Oh, I think I have been a bit misunderstood. By mage, I meant the spellcasting dude, whatever his name is wizard, enchanter or warlock.

 

By spells,, it's not the usefulness I was talking about, but the "cool factor".

 

And I strongly disagree about the variety in Baldur's Gate.

You could invoke a dancing sword duelling with your enemies, make a door appear out of thin air that teleported you in another place, you could transform into a dragon!

Invocations were not limited to elementals and shades, but Ogres, djinns and devils. You could call the haunting spirits of a place to demand informations about your surroundings.

You could charm your oponents and then talk to them, you could even ****ing stop the time.

 

Nowadays, mages in games are all about bursts and buffs, where is all the cool stuff? The most iconic spell of mages (save the fireball) was Chicken transformation. How cool was that? I thought "cRPG" meant also that.

Now I see your point and agree with it, the more cool stuff we have, the better.

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Wizards did get polymorph and summons in the expansion and later patches, but I do miss the polymorph self ability from NWN and BG.  I also miss some of the cool utility spells like invisibility.  On the other hand, Wizard did get the ability to steal spells from any spell casting class.  I really want to see more cool flavor spells like that, even if they're not that effective in battle.

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Pillars has many spellcasting classes that cast cool spelss. Like druids (polymorf self - for those "complaining") or ciphers or chanters (summon stuff). Why should wizards have everything?

 

Why shouldn't spellcasting classes have a variety of different spells instead of just specializing in a set of spells?  It was that way in the IE games.  I like summons, but I don't like the theme of chanters.  I like druids and their transformations, but I also like the fact that mages could transform into monsters that are less "druidy."  There is nothing wrong with having more options for ALL spellcasting classes.  

Edited by Bill Gates' Son
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For me the Pull of Eora spell has proven devastating time after time. I lay it down just behind the toughest opponents, then overlay it with a damaging wall spell. The pulled in enemy has trouble return to the front line (perhaps because of walkpathing issues?), and they get almost constantly damaged and worn down by the wall. The spell seems overpowered, even at 4th level. Have others had that experience?

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

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Easy guys. I understand where OP is coming from.

 

It was all done for the sake of that fickle whore we call Magran Balance. The missing spells were distributed among the other classes to make them more viable. Wizards are still great characters, but not quite the little Gods that they were at high levels in BG&IWD.

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I'd like to see Wizards get more forces and fields spells, like the Bigby's Hands spells, telekinesis, Otiluke's Resilient Sphere, or repulsion.

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

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Easy guys. I understand where OP is coming from.

 

It was all done for the sake of that fickle whore we call Magran Balance. The missing spells were distributed among the other classes to make them more viable. Wizards are still great characters, but not quite the little Gods that they were at high levels in BG&IWD.

I do feel tho that spells could be look at again. While i can understand that the goal for PoE1 was to make sure spells were more "cool" / less restricted in their purpose (or at least i thing so xD), i find myself wishing some of the 'old', simple and specialized BG/IE type spells like invis, chaincast or just some of the more 'redundant' damage spell iterations.

 

I feel that there are still a few spells "missing" that every spellcaster type could get.

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Pillars has many spellcasting classes that cast cool spelss. Like druids (polymorf self - for those "complaining") or ciphers or chanters (summon stuff). Why should wizards have everything?

 

Why shouldn't spellcasting classes have a variety of different spells instead of just specializing in a set of spells?  It was that way in the IE games.  I like summons, but I don't like the theme of chanters.  I like druids and their transformations, but I also like the fact that mages could transform into monsters that are less "druidy."  There is nothing wrong with having more options for ALL spellcasting classes.  

 

It would be cool but not every fantasy rpg should follow DnD mentality. Pillars has its own lore that restricts/defines classes. I could argue why not having fighters with pullchain abilities or flying up in the air smashing 20 meters away aoeing everything or just casting spells. That'll be cool. Come on each game/universe is its own.

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I'd like to strongly support the OP. I don't know if introducing more varied spells is viable in PoE 2 due to economical and balance reasons. I think, that scripted interactions create a great opportunity to substitute for that. The point that magic often doesn't feel magical in video games seems very valid to me. Too often are the mages are reduced to "magical warriors" - whether they are crowd-controllers of damage specialists, their skills are solely battle-oriented. PoE is an example of that - all of wizards competences are seen purely in battle, except for few additional dialogues and scripted interactions. All they do as the students of the arcane is inflicting status effects in AoE or directly, dealing damage and giving some buffs. Too often are those empty numbers. However, that's more or less what the martial classes can do. While I do not deny that there is a distinction, I feel it could be much better.

 

Examples given by the OP from Baldur's Gate show a few ways in which combat spells can be made very flavoured. PoE has some examples too. However, a game which excelled in that topic was Morrowind. In Morrowind, mages had the standard battle repertoire - summons, damage, debuffs, control. However, they had much more. A mountain is hard to climb? Come on man, you can levitate. You want an underwater treasure? Well, there is one spell to breathe underwater. And other one to swim like a fish. Trouble with a merchant high prices? Charm him, get a discount, problem solved. Teleportation? Well, there were four different kinds of it, rooted in the game lore. Would some item would be handy? Well, you can enchant it yourself. In addition, there was a possibility to create custom spells.

 

While I don't even dream of achieving the Morrowind level, partly due to PoE being an isometric game, I think there are two ways in which it could be improved: First is just making the spells more flavored, but I think the state of first game is OK. Second is placing a greater emphasis on dialogues and scripted interactions, in which the characters arcane skills can be acknowledged. We could already see a good trend in White Marches. A good and simple example is the possibility of killing the flames in burning house with spells.

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However, they had much more. A mountain is hard to climb? Come on man, you can levitate. You want an underwater treasure? Well, there is one spell to breathe underwater. And other one to swim like a fish. Trouble with a merchant high prices? Charm him, get a discount, problem solved. Teleportation? Well, there were four different kinds of it, rooted in the game lore. Would some item would be handy? Well, you can enchant it yourself. In addition, there was a possibility to create custom spells.

 

What I feel is the limiting factor here is: NO CASTING OUTSIDE OF COMBAT.

 

I understand that this was done so that players wouldn't be able to cast hundreds of buff spells before every fight. This apparently saves time and allows balancing without having to take all that buffing into account. But if spells are only castable in combat, that means that all spells = combat spells. That makes me sad too.

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However, they had much more. A mountain is hard to climb? Come on man, you can levitate. You want an underwater treasure? Well, there is one spell to breathe underwater. And other one to swim like a fish. Trouble with a merchant high prices? Charm him, get a discount, problem solved. Teleportation? Well, there were four different kinds of it, rooted in the game lore. Would some item would be handy? Well, you can enchant it yourself. In addition, there was a possibility to create custom spells.

 

What I feel is the limiting factor here is: NO CASTING OUTSIDE OF COMBAT.

 

I understand that this was done so that players wouldn't be able to cast hundreds of buff spells before every fight. This apparently saves time and allows balancing without having to take all that buffing into account. But if spells are only castable in combat, that means that all spells = combat spells. That makes me sad too.

 

 

It is a little wierd in a magical world but from a gameplay perspective it was way more enjoyable to not have to buff all the time before fights.

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I'd like to strongly support the OP. I don't know if introducing more varied spells is viable in PoE 2 due to economical and balance reasons. I think, that scripted interactions create a great opportunity to substitute for that. The point that magic often doesn't feel magical in video games seems very valid to me. Too often are the mages are reduced to "magical warriors" - whether they are crowd-controllers of damage specialists, their skills are solely battle-oriented. PoE is an example of that - all of wizards competences are seen purely in battle, except for few additional dialogues and scripted interactions. All they do as the students of the arcane is inflicting status effects in AoE or directly, dealing damage and giving some buffs. Too often are those empty numbers. However, that's more or less what the martial classes can do. While I do not deny that there is a distinction, I feel it could be much better.

 

Examples given by the OP from Baldur's Gate show a few ways in which combat spells can be made very flavoured. PoE has some examples too. However, a game which excelled in that topic was Morrowind. In Morrowind, mages had the standard battle repertoire - summons, damage, debuffs, control. However, they had much more. A mountain is hard to climb? Come on man, you can levitate. You want an underwater treasure? Well, there is one spell to breathe underwater. And other one to swim like a fish. Trouble with a merchant high prices? Charm him, get a discount, problem solved. Teleportation? Well, there were four different kinds of it, rooted in the game lore. Would some item would be handy? Well, you can enchant it yourself. In addition, there was a possibility to create custom spells.

 

While I don't even dream of achieving the Morrowind level, partly due to PoE being an isometric game, I think there are two ways in which it could be improved: First is just making the spells more flavored, but I think the state of first game is OK. Second is placing a greater emphasis on dialogues and scripted interactions, in which the characters arcane skills can be acknowledged. We could already see a good trend in White Marches. A good and simple example is the possibility of killing the flames in burning house with spells.

 

Well, you just stole my thoughts, mixed them with our owns, and threw them on your keyboard. That is exactly what I meant, and indeed, part of the feeling I have comes from the limit of magic by having combat spells only. But I do think the obsession with class balance is also a culprit. I want to add that I only played the first Pillars without its extensions, and after reading some comments here it seems I would need to correct that mistake.

 

It was an interesting read, thanks everyone. Now I just hope one of the Creators finds this and feels inspired by the Greatness of my grumbling.

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Well, you just stole my thoughts, mixed them with our owns, and threw them on your keyboard. That is exactly what I meant, and indeed, part of the feeling I have comes from the limit of magic by having combat spells only. But I do think the obsession with class balance is also a culprit. I want to add that I only played the first Pillars without its extensions, and after reading some comments here it seems I would need to correct that mistake.

 

It was an interesting read, thanks everyone. Now I just hope one of the Creators finds this and feels inspired by the Greatness of my grumbling.

 

Spells outside of combat should be implemented for all classes, but I don't think that giving the wizard every single type of spell - like the OP is proposing - would make any sense, it would just turn all of the others characters obsolete.

I find this obsession towards making the Wizard class the most powerful being in the game quaint. What about rogues and fighters? They desperately need more attention from the team, not this unbalanced, overpowered, silly, and illogical class that is the wizard. 

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Spells outside of combat should be implemented for all classes, but I don't think that giving the wizard every single type of spell - like the OP is proposing - would make any sense, it would just turn all of the others characters obsolete.

 

The OP never said that.  Stop putting words into people's mouths.

 

 

What about rogues and fighters? They desperately need more attention from the team, not this unbalanced, overpowered, silly, and illogical class that is the wizard. 

 

Kind of weird to compare classes like Rogues and fighters to a class that is meant to have a variety of spells.  =\

Edited by Bill Gates' Son
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Spells outside of combat should be implemented for all classes, but I don't think that giving the wizard every single type of spell - like the OP is proposing - would make any sense, it would just turn all of the others characters obsolete.

 

The OP never said that.  Stop putting words into people's mouths.

 

He does ask for wizards to have spells that were locked to other casters in PoE and couple posts down he asks for (or at least references as a counter-point) all the various spells Baldur's Gate and through that D&D has. So saying that he wants wizards to have access to all types of spells is not far off the mark.

 

 

 

What about rogues and fighters? They desperately need more attention from the team, not this unbalanced, overpowered, silly, and illogical class that is the wizard. 

 

Kind of weird to compare classes like Rogues and fighters to a class that is meant to have a variety of spells.  =\

 

Are they though? I realize in tabletop games, wizards generally start with just jack and eventually attain godhood through the "I have a spell for this!" effect. But in a CRPG, a wzard having a key for every lock, or even most locks, is bad for balance. You either design stuff for a party with a wizard and everybody else will have a bad time, or one without a wizard and the wizard party will just stomp everything.

 

Besides, they already have a large variety of spells and more importantly, they can use most of them with multiple grimoires. Limiting wizards by excluding them from certain types of spells, like heals or summons, will help make other caster types more useful without the wizard just taking over their role.

The larger issue here seems to be that PoE does not have utility spells. I don't mind but it's a rude awakening for all the people used to wizards having spells to make other character types obsolete (eg. Knock vs. lockpicking).

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