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Affliction/Inspirations-- Unnecessarily Obfuscated?


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In the backer beta I noticed two trends that concern me:

 

Firstly, the overuse of statuses for groups of stat changes (Aware, Intuitive, etc.) and the tendency for spells and abilities to rely more on these and ability score changes where they didn't before (Blindness causes PER -5 and Accuracy -10 for example).

 

I'm sure many of these will be tuned in upcoming updates and that's fine, but it's the overall design trend which I don't agree with and how changes focus.

 

Affliction/Inspitation choosing process: See an ability in ability tree. See what it does by clicking on effects it adds. Click on those effects to see what they do. If you're a novice, click on the defenses/stats/etc they affect to see what *they* do. Ultimately be unable to accurately judge how effective it will be. Try it anyway. What happens afterwards varies but in many cases it's hard to tell how much of an impact on the battle it had, even for experienced players.

 

This is also true for my second gripe: I've often found spells and abilities that impact abilities scores like Intellect and Resolve etc. to be so much less appealing, and there is *so* much more of that now. Perhaps someone here can explain why better than I can.

 

What I'm saying is, this doesn't feel good. I love complexity in games but this doesn't seem clearly structured, seems like what "things" do could be accomplished without the unnecessary obfuscation. Thoughts?

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Aye +1

 

 

Totally not liking the "grants the X affliction".

 

Yeah well, just write that it takes off 5 PER and 10 accuracy ?

Thank you very much.

 

 

Feels like Asterix in the mad house.

Get form A -> go 3rd floor -> need form B -> go 1st floor -> no go 4th floor -> no you need form C -> wait go 7th floor -> there's no 7th floor, try 6th floor

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One that is resisted by dexterity-related defenses ? (that would be DEX and PER)

Or one that affects your dexterity-related attributes (again, that would be DEX and PER anyway)

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How is this different from what the first game did? Or did you not like that either?

 

Somewhat but for example in POE1 priest prayes would say Immunity to Frightened, Terrified for 20.0 sec then an active ability would say Frightened for 15.0 sec vs. Will so they matched up. I can see how if the priest prayer said instead remove will based afflictions without a link to visualize what are the possible will based afflictions it could be hard to wrap your head around it quickly. I do get the afflictions are different in POE2 just trying to find example 

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One thing I noticed was that on Chanter, one of the Invocations listed that it got rid of "Dexterity Afflictions". What the heck is a Dexterity Affliction anyways?

That is where the Affliction/Inspiration system fails. It should list the Afflictions it counters, not the related stats. Otherwise it is too obtuse to use, you have to check all the afflictions and mark down which one affect dexterity manually to know when to use that inspiration.

 

In other word, having a Inspiration vs Affliction table is a lot easier to use than having to read both set entirely to know what counters what. You shouldn't have to deal with the stats, you just need to know buff/debuff and the name giving you a bit of a clue as to what it does. Enemies drop blind on you, you need to know which inspiration to use to counter it, not check the stats to find the one that matches.

Edited by morhilane
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Azarhal, Chanter and Keeper of Truth of the Obsidian Order of Eternity.


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Aye +1

 

 

Totally not liking the "grants the X affliction".

 

Yeah well, just write that it takes off 5 PER and 10 accuracy ?

Thank you very much.

 

 

Feels like Asterix in the mad house.

Get form A -> go 3rd floor -> need form B -> go 1st floor -> no go 4th floor -> no you need form C -> wait go 7th floor -> there's no 7th floor, try 6th floor

Because its a lot easier to manage stacking buffs/debuffs this way.  In PoE1, you had to figure out which sources of which buffs would stack, mostly by trial and error.  Now if you have a buff that gives a status effect that gives +5 to accuracy and a completely different effect that gives +5 to accuracy, you'll know that they stack.  Its also easier to apply appropriate debuffs.

 

I think there might be too many of both buffs and debuffs to be able to keep track of them easily, and "X Afflictions" is really, really dumb given that the whole point was to group various buffs/debuffs under groups already, but the idea is really good.  

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I think there might be too many of both buffs and debuffs to be able to keep track of them easily, and "X Afflictions" is really, really dumb given that the whole point was to group various buffs/debuffs under groups already, but the idea is really good.  

 

Yeah, this is the crux of it. As a player, and imagine newbies, I reckon it's crucial to tell them which afflictions it counters, and in a clear manner.

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*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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To me the current system is confusing.  Offensively oriented affliction descriptions always refer to will, fortitude, and reflexes.  Affliction defense descriptions always refer to stats; constitution, strength, etc.  It should honestly be one or the other for both, not split between two different ways of describing everything.

 

It's very unintuitive, from just reading spell and ability descriptions I honestly have no idea what abilities defend against or counter which other abilities.

Edited by Climhazzard
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Aye +1

 

 

Totally not liking the "grants the X affliction".

 

Yeah well, just write that it takes off 5 PER and 10 accuracy ?

Thank you very much.

 

 

Feels like Asterix in the mad house.

Get form A -> go 3rd floor -> need form B -> go 1st floor -> no go 4th floor -> no you need form C -> wait go 7th floor -> there's no 7th floor, try 6th floor

Because its a lot easier to manage stacking buffs/debuffs this way.  In PoE1, you had to figure out which sources of which buffs would stack, mostly by trial and error.  Now if you have a buff that gives a status effect that gives +5 to accuracy and a completely different effect that gives +5 to accuracy, you'll know that they stack.  Its also easier to apply appropriate debuffs.

 

I think there might be too many of both buffs and debuffs to be able to keep track of them easily, and "X Afflictions" is really, really dumb given that the whole point was to group various buffs/debuffs under groups already, but the idea is really good.  

 

Wait, what? Are you saying that people in PoE 1 didn'g realize that buffs and, say, a rings enchantment would stack with each other? Why would changing the placement of the "+5" accuracy in the buff under an "Inspiration" window change that?

 

The problem that I see is that having them all labeled "Inspirations" with a title instead of just listing the effect means just one more window to click through to find out what the damn thing does. It's annoying and useless. I don't *want* to have to memorize another list of twenty seven goddamn names; just tell me what stats this damn spell effects and call it good.

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Some good points on either side here. 

Using this system as a means of organizing which effects stack is very useful to players, but probably even more useful to devs just in terms of organization and balancing. There just has to be a better way to communicate this to the player, and one suggestion I heard was to have a table listing statuses and which ones counter which, or is a stronger version of, etc. Also, listing counters in ability/spell descriptions could be a good partial solution as well.

On the other hand, I don't think making the effects and their counters more transparent will make the current system any more fun to use. It might make it less frustrating? But even if I can tell at a glance what different status effects do or even memorize all of them (ugh), they just need to have a more noticeable individual effect. Blind used to be awesome on it's own. Now? Meh. Confusion and stunning effects? Same. And so on, and so on. Go through almost any spell and read it over. They all seem like less cool versions of their PoE1 versions

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There were 20 status effects in the original POE, and learning how they all worked was the key to handling higher difficulties. I'm 250 hours into the original, and I still get them wrong.

 

Now, they're divided into six groups, and those groups already familiar to me because they're based on the six attributes of my characters. I find this a LOT less confusing.

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I think an in-game codex entry or out-of-game explanation of all the various Afflictions/Inspirations is needed. Combat in PoE at higher difficulties was largely juggling Afflictions so your attacks could crit, but since everything's been reworked it's harder to test this aspect of combat.

Agreed. But those afflictions were so much more clear in their effect. Maybe this will all get tuned and my concerns will go away, who knows

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It's just a hell of a lot easier for me to know what I'm doing when my spell says "Gives +5 Perception" then "Gives the Awareness inspiration" and I don't want to have to click on "Awareness" and open up a *second goddamn tab* to know what I'm doing.

That's literally all I'm complaining about. Why do I have to open a second tab to see the effects of my spell. I just want to see it on the original tab, not have it hidden behind a name that I have to click on and/or memorize.

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I think an in-game codex entry or out-of-game explanation of all the various Afflictions/Inspirations is needed. Combat in PoE at higher difficulties was largely juggling Afflictions so your attacks could crit, but since everything's been reworked it's harder to test this aspect of combat.

 

It makes me wonder. With the hotlinked in-game codex, I wonder if that is encouraging some design patterns which rely on it to explain away systems that should have be designed more forthcomingly so in the first place.

 

This sort overuse/over-rely on pitfall is pretty rampant in software in general, so I can imagine it directly affecting the deliverables.

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All these Afflictions and Inspirations are just for show - decoys which really don't matter.

 

Only Affliction that would matter: Decreased Penetration.

Only Inspiration that would matter: Increased Penetration.

 

;)

 

EDIT: Added the emote to underline that this is a tongue-in-cheek joke.

Edited by IndiraLightfoot
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*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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How is this different from what the first game did? Or did you not like that either?

 

I did not.

 

To quote myself from nearly a year ago:

 

 

On status effects... I think real problem is that there are too gosh darn many to remember what they do, and many are similar to one another, both in name and in function. I mean, dazed, confused, disoriented and distracted are practically synonyms. No way did we need both frightened and terrified. Weakened, hobbled and sickened could easily have been consolidated to just weakened.

 

Almost all of them have stat debuffs similar to another effect but with differences of severity. There could have been a system that applied the same affliction but with differing levels of severity. "Applies a strong weakening effect," for example.

 

Yeah, they affect different stats, to some degree. But the differences are not so great that they couldn't have been worked out in design. I wouldn't want to see it dumbed down to two or three, it just almost seems granular for granularity's sake, and I have to look at tooltips to keep track way more than I'd like.

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How is this different from what the first game did? Or did you not like that either?

the level of complexity and obscurity is a different order of magnitude. three defenses + deflection from poe were pretty much the traditional rock/paper/scissors kinda game with which near everybody is familiar. pretty darn intuitive that a creature weak to will should be targeted with attacks which target will, no? 

 

am personal not daunted, but the learning curve for countering afflictions, given the range o' total afflictions and counters, is relative steep. have played through the beta and and have a considerable number o' hours already invested in the game, and we don't believe we is dealing with afflictions and counters with a high degree o' confidence. 

 

for a player new to poe, am thinking deadfire would be daunting. am recalling how many folks found poe to be overwhelming in spite o' the relative intuitive nature o' poe mechanics. have sherman set the wayback machine for summer o' 2014 and watch crpg vets squint at the poe beta combat log scroll... and not understand what were happening. were common and understandable.  deadfire, with afflictions/inspirations AND penetration added to already existing poe mechanics is likely a nightmare for folks complete new to the franchise. 

 

as long as is transparent, Gromnir prefers complex.  dense deadfire don't annoy us.  however, am much sympathetic, particular to those new to the series. could foresee considerable rage-quit numbers if there ain't an excellent tutorial section.

 

HA! Good Fun!

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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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