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I've been enjoying this game very much for the past couple of weeks, playing on Hard for my first playthrough. I have found the difficulty just about right for me so far, and have really appreciated the general advice and build guides on this forum. I have been progressing well with only a few reloads but today I had my first rage quit.

 

Level 7 in Cliaban Rilag (near Dyrford) in the large room full of spores. It was a long frustrating battle being surrounded by sporelings while the several dank spores bombard you with mind controls. I had lost a lot of health and Durance and Aloth both went down but it appeared that I would win easily with all the sporelings and the nearest dank spore killed. Then, as my team charged the remaining dank spores they walk into several undetected traps and get virtually wiped out. This is the first time I have seen traps within a combat encounter and it left me perplexed.

 

Now I'm not looking for advice with this particular encounter - i'm sure it would be simple 2nd time around. I am now however completely paranoid about ever closing distance on an enemy in a combat encounter in case I step on a trap I had no chance of previously detecting. It just seems like a really cheap way of adding difficulty, with no solution other than playing completely defensively and only using ranged attacks against distant opponents.

 

Am I missing something here ?

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Well, traps as a part of a combat encounter or at least as a threat during the fight will come from time to time, but it happens in dungeons, and imho you are usually warned by design, narrative and atmosphere. So the level design itself tells you - it's an old, dangerous place, time to switch to rogue-like tactics.

 

In areas like Scaen cult dungeon, Endless Path, old ruins or bases of half-crazy mages you are supposed to expect traps, do reckon, using a char with high perception, sneak and mechanics ("thief") or a pair of chars, if this skills are distributed among several party members, you check everything until the mobs block all the possibility to go further. Then you call the party for a wipe and switch to rogue-like again.

 

Anyway, the traps can be detected and disabled in-combat, and it usually won't take long, they bring xp, can be sold and used as your own traps. All you need to do is move in sneak mode when the area itself is trying to tell you to do this. Use fast speed mode (D key) to not get bored by slow movement. There are also ritual scrolls to boost mechanics and sneak and rooms for rest with bonuses, better use them if traps are expected. 

 

In open areas fast engage is usually painless. 

And traps that block the whole corridor completely are few, there is usually a possibility to pass them using a safe spot.

Also it may be a good idea to disable party AI in dungeons, preventing their free roaming and target seeking.

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Thank you for the detailed reply.

 


Anyway, the traps can be detected and disabled in-combat

 

This was the key piece of infomation I was missing. Not sure why but I previously believed that traps and hidden secrets were only detectable when scouting/stealthed. I do however need to re-think my party now. Aloth was my scout / mechanics guy, but he sits at the back during combat. It seems I really need mechanics on one of my frontliners.

 

Also.. you mentioned that high perception is useful for a scout ? I'm sure I've read elsewhere that mechanics is the only stat that helps detect traps. Is there another reason for high perception on a scout ?

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Well in that case the problem still remains. The problem being that in combat you can never close distance on an enemy over ground that you have not had the opportunity to scout beforehand, for fear of stepping on a high level trap (since lower level traps can be detected in combat).

 

Now obviously it is not an issue when you have played through the game a couple of times and can recall the trap-laden combat encounters, but for a first playthrough it either  encourages save scumming, or the fully defensive "never move foward at all" during combat approach. Does nobody else have an issue with this ?

 

It seems to me like a big disadvantage to melee focused characters, and a really cheap way of adding difficulty to a game whose various combat mechanics are otherwise very well judged.

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Good news for you:

 

According to the Beta in POE2: Deadfire (judging from the twitch stream) the situation will in general shift to your preference.

Traps can be detected both by skills (so they are highlighted by red) AND by seeing actual details over terrain (cords, wires, plates etc).

Traps can (still) be seen an disarmed in combat

There is no more need to spend all the time in "sneak mode + fast speed mode" combo.

 

But of course the game is still punishing for blind rushes in terms of mobs (which is ok and realistic tbh).

Hope that warms a little bit  :yes:

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