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My Feelings on Five Party Members


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#21
daven

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.


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#22
JerekKruger

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.

 

I wouldn't necessarily say an improvement, though I agree that the arguments in favour of six haven't been compelling so I don't see any reason it would be any worse.



#23
Valmy

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.

 

Meh I want no cap at all. Every joinable PC should be able to be in my group at the same time if I want. Why do we still have to tolerate this artificial and arbitrary cap nonsense when technology makes it obsolete?

 

But what can you do?



#24
Wormerine

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.


Meh I want no cap at all. Every joinable PC should be able to be in my group at the same time if I want. Why do we still have to tolerate this artificial and arbitrary cap nonsense when technology makes it obsolete?

But what can you do?
Because it was never a technological limitation?

“One of the responsibilities I think we have as designers is to protect the player from themselves” - Sid Meier

I never liked the idea of people joining you, moving into your house and sitting on their asses waiting for you to take them along for a walk. I much preferred Baldur’s Gates’ “here are companions, build a team from them and this is what you get. Come back in next playthrough and try the others!”. I am pretty sure KOTOR was the first to do it but it worked due to your “base” being a ship. Should work the same for Deadfire.

Edited by Wormerine, 11 October 2017 - 06:29 AM.


#25
Archaven

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I was just playing some Pillars today, I rolled my first Rogue PC last week, and just went through the encounters with the wurms and Xuarips on -redacted-. I was playing with a full six character party, as I usually do, though I have done solo play and four man parties for fun.

 

It was so satisfying to have all six members contributing and synergizing. Front line was Kana, he was positioned to both reach my back line with his Sure Handed Ila chant and the enemy with Come, Come Soft Winds of Death while also being positioned to blast the large group of enemies with his "at the sound of his voice the killers froze stiff" invocation.

 

Pallegina, who has by far the highest defenses of the party already at level 6 was in the middle lead, and she came out of stealth first, essentially yelling at the enemy to target her.

 

Eder was off to the other side, shooting with his pistol until the host of enemies were cut down some and he could wade in with his melee weapons and start knocking down the last enemies.

 

Aloth was in the back and led off with Chill Fog, blinding and hurting the host as they tried to get at my party, making it much harder for them to hit us and much quicker to tear them down. His soul bound scepter also slowly carved them up with his blast talent and dangerous implement modal.

 

My rogue is an interrupter with a bow and interfered with the Xaurip Champions that made it to my front line. He also dealt the odd blind or hobble effect where necessary.

 

And finally Durance was there to condemn the enemy, weakening them, dazing them, providing healing to the party and taking opportune shots with his arquebus.

 

On PotD we made short work of both large parties on the level many of you can probably guess. It felt very satisfying to have all party members working together like this, complimenting each other. It felt very tactical.

 

In Deadfire we'll have one less component to play with in this tactical dance. Just the idea of it feels limiting. I don't know what design lesson they think they're learning here from Pillars 1 that made them make this change but I am highly skeptical.

 

Maybe I should just be happy they didn't go down to four.

 

I feel you. One of my biggest issue i have now is probably due to my preference and attachment to the character themselves and possbibly their roles.

 

I seems to always pick the following characters for my playthrough:

- Eder

- Aloth

- Durance

- Hiravias

 

My current PT is a ranger and that leaves me with not much option seeing Chanter and Paladin are so good. It seems i may have to sacrifice Eder for Pallegina but as character in the game i love him so much.  It really makes no sense to handcuff the players on how they want to play their game especially single player.

 

Unless, maybe Obsidian is going to introduce PvP multiplayer 5v5 for expansion? Who knows everyone chasing the MOBA dream nowadays.



#26
4ward

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As for party size limit reduced to 5, well that‘s regress however you look at it. The more chars the player has the more (personal) quests he‘ll experience which adds to the quality of the playthrough.

Not really. Just like in most RPGs since KOTOR all party member join you. While you can travel with only 4 at any given time, you will still probably experience most of their arch’s and personal quests. If you mean you will experience less sof the smaller interactions, that is true. Is it really that much of an issue. It will still take two playthroughs to go through the game with all of the 7 companions.
 

.
 
As for party size limit reduced to 5, well that‘s regress however you look at it. The more chars the player has the more (personal) quests he‘ll experience which adds to the quality of the playthrough. With more units it‘s easier to turn the tides in a battle which is also true for the enemy meaning there‘s more interesting battles. With more units, players have more variety in playstyle, e.g. make meleers more passive re. abilities and more active re. moving chars to make formations, to block, to shield other chars. With more chars there‘s bigger variety in difficulty the player can set for himself, going with 6 chars or 5 or 4 etc. Whether players like to play with 4 or even go solo is their subjective thing, they‘re free to do so, that‘s not an argument for limiting the party size to 5. Later Bioware games like NWN, KotoR, DA went with smaller parties also because of 3d camera. There‘s no reason to do that with the isometric view.


That’s not how game design works. Putting more or less character on a screen doesn’t make for a more/less engaging combat. I am sorry, but if you make a passive characters, or attach auto control in a tactics game that means there is an issue with the design. Tactics and strategy aren’t bound to amount of units you control but what they can do and what enemies can do - in other words decisions you make before and during combat. Having one exra tank and getting two extra enemies for him to keep busy while your DPS and supports kill and heal doesn’t make combat better. It just adds 3 units which don’t contribute to the engagement in an interesting way. All the games you mentioned had a pretty crappy combat but amount of units under your control wasn’t the key issue. You could expand DA party to 6 and it still would be dull mess (even more so).

 

 

re. KotOR

depends. Even if the player is enabled to exchange party members as easily as in KotOR their personal quests could be time-gated and/or area-gated as in BG2 so that it would be very difficult to get all possible personal quests in one playthrough. This would be a good thing, i‘m just saying that with a party of six you‘ll experience more of that but not everything in one playthrough.

 

re. party of 6 vs 5

 

while i don‘t have a game design diploma i did play a game like BG2. Playing with 5 was different than playing with 6 for the reasons i already mentioned.

 

 

 

5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.


Meh I want no cap at all. Every joinable PC should be able to be in my group at the same time if I want. Why do we still have to tolerate this artificial and arbitrary cap nonsense when technology makes it obsolete?

But what can you do?
Because it was never a technological limitation?

“One of the responsibilities I think we have as designers is to protect the player from themselves” - Sid Meier

I never liked the idea of people joining you, moving into your house and sitting on their asses waiting for you to take them along for a walk. I much preferred Baldur’s Gates’ “here are companions, build a team from them and this is what you get. Come back in next playthrough and try the others!”. I am pretty sure KOTOR was the first to do it but it worked due to your “base” being a ship. Should work the same for Deadfire.

 

 

i disagree with Sid Meier. This way of thinking can lead to limiting the player, yet i do like learning from my mistakes, it‘s a way of feeling progress just as much as your char progresses through the game getting more xp, better items...



#27
rjshae

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.

 

To me it's a wash:

 

Negative: Combat situations will need to be simpler because there are fewer tactical circumstances your group can handle without turning it into a random brawl. That makes it less interesting.

Positive: Characters can have more active abilities to fiddle with during combat because you can focus more on each individual. That makes it more interesting.



#28
JerekKruger

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Meh I want no cap at all. Every joinable PC should be able to be in my group at the same time if I want. Why do we still have to tolerate this artificial and arbitrary cap nonsense when technology makes it obsolete?

 

How do you balance the game when some players are wandering around with a ten person party and others have six, or four, or whatever?



#29
4ward

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@rjshae

but you issue commands when the game is paused not in real time so you can focus on each individual the same. Or i'm just missing your point?


Edited by 4ward, 11 October 2017 - 08:55 AM.


#30
Pope

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.


Meh I want no cap at all. Every joinable PC should be able to be in my group at the same time if I want. Why do we still have to tolerate this artificial and arbitrary cap nonsense when technology makes it obsolete?

But what can you do?
Because it was never a technological limitation?

“One of the responsibilities I think we have as designers is to protect the player from themselves” - Sid Meier

I never liked the idea of people joining you, moving into your house and sitting on their asses waiting for you to take them along for a walk. I much preferred Baldur’s Gates’ “here are companions, build a team from them and this is what you get. Come back in next playthrough and try the others!”. I am pretty sure KOTOR was the first to do it but it worked due to your “base” being a ship. Should work the same for Deadfire.

 

 

I didn't like this idea originally either, until I got a job and was no longer willing to invest another 100 precious hours of my life on a new playthrough.

Now I am very grateful that I can enjoy all companions in a single run.



#31
rjshae

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@rjshae

but you issue commands when the game is paused not in real time so you can focus on each individual the same. Or i'm just missing your point?

 

Gaming time is limited for us older chaps.


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#32
Messier-31

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^ Heh! You tell 'em, Marl!


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#33
Quillon

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https://forums.somet...8#post477232833

 

It[current party limit] makes pretty much everything easier. Notably, UI layout (e.g. HUD, inventory), content balancing, and area layout.

 



#34
esyvjrt

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The designers choose what are the best for the characteristics they think are more important for the experience of the general player, of course they give you options to adjust the game to what you want from it, but just for the options that don't compromise the experience of the average player. Difficulty settings let to choose what is best for each player based on whether this is important or not for them.

 

They decided that will be better for the general experience to design the game around a 5 members party and not be able to modify this cap

The party size limitation is consequence of combat and replay-ability importance and generate problems for those for whom combat and replay-ability are not of big importance compared to having an arbitrary limitation of companion for role-playing purposes, for those who don't have time or just wont replay the game and want to experience all companions.

Ii think a solution is to let the players modify their experience by making it easily moddable, so its not an option in the menu, and it feels like a modification of how the game was supposed to be played and was designed for, but still let people modify their experience according to what is important to them in this aspect.

 

Same with difficulty settings, i think it could be cool to be able to be able to mod difficulty( (hp)x(X)?, (accuracy)x(X)?, etc) for those who find PotD easy


Edited by esyvjrt, 11 October 2017 - 06:04 PM.

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#35
Valci

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Err, these games are designed to be played more than once. So you are not supposed to be able to see all of the content on one playthrough. If you can something is wrong.


Absolutely... Also, with multiclassing there should be enough options combat wise for those that like that sort of thing. For me it will likely be all single class for the first couple of playthroughs at least cause I like specialized characters more...

#36
Varana

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“One of the responsibilities I think we have as designers is to protect the player from themselves” - Sid Meier

I never liked the idea of people joining you, moving into your house and sitting on their asses waiting for you to take them along for a walk. I much preferred Baldur’s Gates’ “here are companions, build a team from them and this is what you get. Come back in next playthrough and try the others!”. I am pretty sure KOTOR was the first to do it but it worked due to your “base” being a ship. Should work the same for Deadfire.

 
 
i disagree with Sid Meier. This way of thinking can lead to limiting the player, yet i do like learning from my mistakes, it‘s a way of feeling progress just as much as your char progresses through the game getting more xp, better items...


But game rules are all about limitations. Bishops can only move diagonally, you may only play one card at a time, you may only bring four guys to shoot 20+ aliens in the face. It's the designer's job to create interesting limitations for the player to work with.
That even extends to the narrative, not only combat. You cannot have Monty and Xzar at the same time as Jaheira and Khalid. You can't join Telvanni and Redoran. Yennefer or Triss.
Limits are necessary for the game mechanics and the game world to work, and you can't offload everything on the players.
Restricting the party to five (or, at all) is a game rule in that sense. It's part of the challenge of combat.
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#37
daven

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If you throw all limitations out of the window and just allow anything, you end up with Episode 2: Attack of the Clones.

 

I will not allow that to happen here!!!



#38
hilfazer

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.

 

Why will 5 better? I haven't seen any good arguments for 5 as well.


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#39
Fardragon

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5 Party member cap will be an improvement. I haven't seen any good arguments as to why having 6 is preferential.

 

Why will 5 better? I haven't seen any good arguments for 5 as well.

 

 

I gave one - 5 better reflects the size of a PnP group.



#40
4ward

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@Varana

it‘s a single-player offline game, we‘re playing with ourselves on the pc, you‘re not sitting with other folks around the table. You‘re supposed to be allowed to set your own rules/limitations within the given rules. You want to tackle Firkraag with a party of 4,5,6 or even solo, that‘s up to you. You want to use spells before fights or not at all, up to you. You enter the druid grove and decide to not rest at all, rest once, rest twice… up to you and so on and on.. You want to try to even break the rule, go ahead be creative, go with a high charisma reload when necessary and try to finish the game with Xzar/montaron and Jaheira/khalid. Hell, there‘s people who separated pairs in BG1. You want to use moving to fool the enemy or even use kiting, up to you. Trust that people are capable and willing to learn, allow them to set their rules within the system, allow them fun, we‘re all different.






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