Larian Studios
Posted By: Prince Ibrahim Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 03:02 AM
I'm sure this has been brought up before, but I'm new to the forums and there are 1000's of pages of prior threads. If there is a dedicated thread for posts like this, someone please link me to the discussion. Thanks!

Speaking as a casual video gamer and hard-core D&D player, this game has too many "overpowered" encounters, and it kills the fun of the game. Most of the encounters in the surface world are fine; challenging at times, but survivable. The Githyanki, however... I'm on my 4th playthrough of the surface world, and I don't even bother to visit them anymore, because by the time my first character gets an action, half my party is dead. The Underdark is where the game gets completely stupid, though. Observe:

1) The encounter with the Duergar is unavoidable, and each member of the Duergar team is more than a match for any PC. They automatically start with surprise, get high ground, and they summon help, AND they routinely violate the 5E rules in ways that make them WAY more powerful (Multi-shot with a crossbow? Exploding arrows at level 4? Infinite uses of Mirror Image?).

2) I've had to face the Minotaurs AND the Bulette, together. When I did, all the mobs completely ignored each other. A Bulette's mean damage on a bite is 30 hp, which is more health than anyone other than Lae'zel has. It bites AFTER using Deadly Leap, so whomever it targets is instantly downed. The Minotaurs somehow get to use Gore and then Multi-attack afterwards (when they don't even have multi-attack as an option).

3) The Spectator should be a CR3 monster (and therefore fairly easy for a L4 party to deal with.) Instead, it has twice as many HP as it should, extra eye rays, more actions than it should (4 eye rays a turn? Really?) and it can summon helpers, each of which is equivalent to a PC...except they get to cheat as well (again, crossbows SHOULD NOT have multi-shot).

I'm sure it gets worse as you get deeper into the Underdark, but I wouldn't know, because by the time I've suffered through all of this, I always delete my save and wait for the next patch to start a new run with a different class/race combo...

As I've read through the forums today, I've seen a lot of people expressing the idea that Larian has no intention of making a "D&D" video game; they're just re-skinning DOS II with Forgotten Realms in order to take advantage of the massive built-in player base from D&D. Honestly, if I had realized that Larian was the same studio behind DOS I wouldn't have spent the money on this game. I loved the original BG games, the Neverwinter Nights series, and especially Icewind Dale. I hated DOS with a passion, for the same reasons listed above (I lasted 16 hours before I deleted the game from my library). Since there's little chance that Larian will give me back the $60 I payed to be a unpaid play-tester for their game, all I can do is everything in my power to get them to change course. I'm sure I speak for MANY people when I say that the only reason I bought this game was to be able to play solo D&D in-between RL D&D sessions. You advertised this as a D&D game; please stay true to your word. TSR and WoTC have already spent 40+ years on the game balance and world-building, all you need to do is write the code to bring it to life. The people who want to play DOS III can just go replay DOS II. All of us who want a REAL D&D experience will thank you endlessly for scratching an itch that has been festering for a decade.

Thank you for reading all the way through this.

Ibrahim
Posted By: Niara Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 06:23 AM
Hey there,

You're definitely not alone in this, but I still like to hope that every new individual voice on the matter counts, so thanks for taking the time to write this.

If you want to be sure that someone at Larian definitely see what you have to say, I'd recommend taking the time to submit your message to their formal feedback form as well (you can find it Here)

Larian's encounters are built around the presumption that you'll use their cheap, overpowered mechanics which abolish all class distinction, because they're the most effective way to exploit the game. Swen has made it really clear that exploiting and breaking the game, with no regard for investment or immersion is what he views as the 'fun' and 'right' way to play, and this is the design philosophy that the game is following. The encounters become mind-numbingly easy when you approach them from the "Right" way, when you come in with foreknowledge and prior set up, and when you abuse Larian's homebrew mechanics; without doing these things, the result will be very different. Many will agree with you that this is not good game design.
Posted By: Aaezil Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 06:59 AM
I thought BG3 EA was a bit easy really. Solasta on the hardest difficulty was a bit more challenging since resting and preparing for fights was a bit trickier but not by much.
Posted By: DragonSnooz Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 07:02 AM
Hi Ibrahim, thanks for voicing your thoughts on combat. A lot of folks agree that something is wrong with combat (some opinions differ on why, but I think at this point combat should be something EA players can agree needs changing).

You might be interested in checking out some of the megathreads.
Link 1 Link 2
Posted By: qwerrecd42 Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 07:19 AM
As Niara said, barrelmancy and high-ground/backstab rule the day. No need to bother with much if anything else unless they have a big overhaul of combat in its current state. You can always play some DOS 2 if you want to get some practice in with the system laugh (because it's pretty damn similar, unsurprisingly).
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 08:04 AM
The encounter difficulty in BG3 depends on your ability NOT to focus on DnD mechanics.
Focus on Larian's homebrew and every encounter is close to very easy.

As a DnD player I guess you had used DnD strategy and possibilities.

This works more or less for most combats even if, according to me it's usually too difficult for a normal game mode.

That said, when you'll learn the mechanics that don't belong to DnD, this difficulty completely change from "+- normal to very difficult" to "very easy to +- normal".

The balance of the game is terrible because the two systems used are not balanced at all with each other.
The majority of players talking about the game hope this will be fix according to this forum and reddit polls.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 08:58 AM
Dunno ...
Encounter with Duegar is totally avoidable. O_o
There are mutiple ways to let Bulette fight Minotaurs, without risking your own skin, same as avoid them both.
Spectator dont "summon" helpers, more like de-petrify them. Wich also can be prevented. :-/
And i dunno how it goes in your language, but in mine its advertised as a "game BASED ON D&D", so ... there is suppose to be differences. O_o

I mean ... yes, the game can be tough if you make it tough for yourself. O_o But there is also many ways to make it all lot easier, if you are creative.
And yes, some of options Larian give us (usualy called cheese on this forum) can also make it a lot easier ... even tho its not allways just about them.
And certainly yes, there are some people (i would certainly not say majority of players) around here who would nod so hard so their neck will hurt next norning, when you suggest removal of those mechanics. O_o Would you mind to add survey to your post? It might be interesting to see how many of them is there actualy.
No need to wait for a poll here to be completed. Someone ran a poll on the BG3 subreddit just last week that asked if people preferred standard D&D combat or Larians modifications to combat. The sample size of 1,200 is good enough and the subreddit has a much wider set of players than this forum so should be more representative of the whole player base.

https://www.reddit.com/r/BaldursGat...etter_dd_or_larians_modified_dd_and_why/

here's the post copied out if you want to skip the subreddit

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Post Title : What's better D&D or Larian's modified D&D? And why?
Post text : I find a lot of people criticising Larian's decision to modify D&D rules and I wonder what does the majority of people think since usually you only hear people with the loudest voice.

Total : 1.2k votes

514 (41.2%) D&D
325 (26.0%) Larian's modified D&D
63 (05.0%) BG1 and BG2 modified D&D
346 (27.7%) Abstain
Voting closed

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

if you removed the abstains, the results are 57% D&D and 36% Larian modified D&D. Im not convinced that removing abstains is necessary as the lack of support of any combat is a valid stance but not necessary useful for this particular discussion.

Including abstains (for all points of view), only 1 in 4 voters actively prefer larians changes and excluding abstains (to focus on people who find combat system important), that only rises to a little over 1 in 3 while those who actively prefer D&D rise from 41.2% to 57%.

Hardly a ringing endorsement of the Larians combat modifications and style.

It does seem that the people who would disagree with OP are the minority rather than the majority and the comments within that reddit post support this
Posted By: Tuco Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 09:56 AM
While I have my share of complains about Larian's implementation of some mechanics, I really don't feel like there are substantial arguments being used here.

Even putting blatant inaccuracies aside (you CAN avoid some of these encounters and/or make them easier for you in several ways) I also happen to disagree on several of your grievances.
Also, encounter design was arguably one of the strongest points for DOS 1 and 2 and not one of its flaws (that would be the shitty randomized itemization and the exceedingly steep power curve on level ups).
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 10:00 AM
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Dunno ...
Encounter with Duegar is totally avoidable. O_o

How ? If you're lucky and/or if you choose the good answers ? Does that could be summarized by "totally avoidable" ?

Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
even tho its not allways just about them.

DnD combats are supposed to be playable/enjoyable without having an advantage on every rolls isn't it ?

Is that possible and enjoyable in BG3 ? Isn't missing a real problem if you don't have advantages very often (everytime) ?

I think combats are totally about these modified rules (among other homebrew that "only" have an influence on the balance and the difficulty).

Originally Posted by Tuco
you CAN avoid some of these encounters and/or make them easier for you in several ways

I don't remember how it was in DoS but from what I read here and there, Larian is not known for creating balanced encounters. There are definitely issues with many encounters in BG3 but it's first because the entire system is broken.

Struggle, cheese, hide, be lucky in dialogs or "be creative" - which usually mean use something you don't know / you wouldn't ever think about on your first playthrough (like making the bulette fight the minotaurs, rez dead creatures IF you side with the mushroom AND take the good one in your party, attack the invisible duergar).

Interresting combat design.
Hope everyone will watch the good youtube video and read the good reddit tips before playing the game for the first time.

They won't be able to correctly balance the easier and the more challenging encounters if the system itself is not better balanced.

OP's conclusions may not be good but his overall experience is something we read a lot when a lot of "new players" were still playing the game.
Posted By: Ixal Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 11:05 AM
Most encounters are sadly balanced around cheese, either by expecting the players to use hight advantage, barrels, etc. to their fullest or combats having a specific gimmick Larian wants you to find and exploit like burning webs.
If you want to play Baldurs Gate like a D&D game and not like Larian wants you to its very hard.
Posted By: Pandemonica Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 11:15 AM
Originally Posted by qwerrecd42
As Niara said, barrelmancy and high-ground/backstab rule the day. No need to bother with much if anything else unless they have a big overhaul of combat in its current state. You can always play some DOS 2 if you want to get some practice in with the system laugh (because it's pretty damn similar, unsurprisingly).
Never used either in this game. And the battles were challenging, but not crazy so at least in my playthroughs.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 11:24 AM
Originally Posted by Pandemonica
Originally Posted by qwerrecd42
As Niara said, barrelmancy and high-ground/backstab rule the day. No need to bother with much if anything else unless they have a big overhaul of combat in its current state. You can always play some DOS 2 if you want to get some practice in with the system laugh (because it's pretty damn similar, unsurprisingly).
Never used either in this game. And the battles were challenging, but not crazy so at least in my playthroughs.

Could you record one of the "hard" combat in which you never use highground and backstab and show us please ?

Just to see how it goes.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 11:28 AM
So when I first played the game I got my butt handed to me a bunch, until I figured out all the things I was doing wrong. This game, like all Larian games, has a learning curve.

Just for context I don't use barrelmancy, or throw (potions or people) and I try to play as close to 5E rules as possible. People will say you "have to" abuse those mechanics and the truth is you really don't.

However it also depends on how you define "game" for some people a game is simply an interactive experience with a story. For others a game is something that challenges them to learn, grow and do better AND has a compelling story. Larian falls heavily on the latter definition when they create games. I am not saying objectively that either is better, most games though fall under the former definition.

I find it helps to play with other people, so if you get a chance and don't mind being social I would encourage you head to the Larian discord and join a multiplayer game.

Anyway, I wrote up this list for new players some time ago and its based on all the mistakes I made when I first started.

1) Using True Strike. Don't do it. Its worthless at low levels.

2) Using the Gloves of the Absolute without the Mark of the Absolute branded into you. This casts Bane on yourself, over and over. You get the Mark
from priestess Gut

3) Odd attribute levels - like 13, 15, 17. Useless. 17 is the worst. With a few minor exceptions (Warlock + Volo's Eye for example) its a huge waste of points.

4) Using weapons you are not proficient in or not ideal for the character. Example: Shadowheart, throw her mace away and give her a dagger/shield and a Light Crossbow. Make sure you are proficient in everything you equip.

5) Ending my turn facing away from mobs (you are giving them free advantage on you) - I see this a lot with new players.

6) Not taking the high ground and holding it or attacking from high ground and Not using stealth to scout out areas to find the best area.

7) Ending my turn with my ranged weapon in hand instead of my shield (if I have one) and melee weapon because 1) you don't get an Attack of Opportunity against another mob that moves past you or away unless you have a melee weapon equipped - and 2) a shield only protects you if you are holding it and not your ranged weapon- there is a little switch that lets you toggle what you are currently holding.

8) Not understanding the Attribute that affects to-hit values the most; for Finesse/ranged weapons Dexterity, For all other weapons - Strength. Cleric spells Wisdom, Wizard Spells Intelligence, Warlock spells Charisma, Druid spells Wisdom

9) Understanding how Concentration works when casting spells.

10) Not understanding the importance of Darkvision in to-hit and who has Darkvision and who does not (Elves, Half Elves, Drow, Dwarves, tieflings have it and Humans, Githyanki*, Halflings do NOT have it) Sunwalkers gift (Ring, Underdark vendor) gives you Darkvision, Warlocks can choose it at 2nd level as an invocation (Devils sight), Wizards can cast it on themselves or others and it lasts until long rest (No concentration)

11) Its important to know that breaking a chest usually destroys its contents. Don't do that.

12) If you are a Warlock or Beast master Ranger make sure you summon your familiar outside of combat so you can use it in combat.
Posted By: Rhobar121 Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 11:42 AM
The game isn't that hard if you know what you're doing.
You can easily complete almost all fights without using the so-called cheese. Fights created specifically for level 5, such as gith and bulette, can be problematic. In the case of the bridge, I failed to defeat them without escaping to the higher level, but this fight is not for level 4.
In the remaining fights I didnt use barrels or I didnt position myself to gain an advantage (of course when the opponent turned his back on his own, I used it).
There were quite a few tough fights, some I was lucky enough or otherwise (one shot from Flinda's crit).
The most important thing is to realize that the game is designed to let you rest after each fight.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 11:48 AM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
No need to wait for a poll here to be completed. Someone ran a poll on the BG3 subreddit just last week that asked if people preferred standard D&D combat or Larians modifications to combat. The sample size of 1,200 is good enough and the subreddit has a much wider set of players than this forum so should be more representative of the whole player base.

https://www.reddit.com/r/BaldursGat...etter_dd_or_larians_modified_dd_and_why/

It does seem that the people who would disagree with OP are the minority rather than the majority and the comments within that reddit post support this

Ok so a good sample size of a population is 10%. There are 76k people on the subreddit and of those you have 1,200 responses which is a about 2% or 1/5 of what would constitute a good sample.

But that's not even really accurate because you have about 2-5 million people who have purchased Bg3 since EA launched. The people on the subreddit are the most dedicated and involved of the playerbase. So they represent a sample with a "high possible degree of bias" towards certain results.

The hardcore gamers want a more accurate D&D RAW experience. I am one of those people. I am not going to assume the majority of players feel that way.

At the end of the day I have agency and can create the experience I want to have one way or the other.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 12:08 PM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
No need to wait for a poll here to be completed. Someone ran a poll on the BG3 subreddit just last week that asked if people preferred standard D&D combat or Larians modifications to combat. The sample size of 1,200 is good enough and the subreddit has a much wider set of players than this forum so should be more representative of the whole player base.

https://www.reddit.com/r/BaldursGat...etter_dd_or_larians_modified_dd_and_why/

It does seem that the people who would disagree with OP are the minority rather than the majority and the comments within that reddit post support this

Ok so a good sample size of a population is 10%. There are 76k people on the subreddit and of those you have 1,200 responses which is a about 2% or 1/5 of what would constitute a good sample.

But that's not even really accurate because you have about 2-5 million people who have purchased Bg3 since EA launched. The people on the subreddit are the most dedicated and involved of the playerbase. So they represent a sample with a "high possible degree of bias" towards certain results.

The hardcore gamers want a more accurate D&D RAW experience. I am one of those people. I am not going to assume the majority of players feel that way.

At the end of the day I have agency and can create the experience I want to have one way or the other.

That's not the thread but no, he's right.
Think about samples for elections. The margin error is (slightly) reduced with a greatest sample but the tendency remains the same.

In exemple polls with a sample of 1200 people about the american election of 2020 give the same tendency than polls with 35000 voters. The margin error is different (from 0 to 4%) but it wouldn't make a huge difference in this specific reddit poll.
10% or 1,000 is a good MAXIMUM sample size not a good MINIMUM sample size so yeah 1,200 is a good sample size even though it is above 1,000 because there are a number of abstains there.

Here is a website that covers the topic: https://www.tools4dev.org/resources/how-to-choose-a-sample-size

and here is the relevant section for you.

----------------------------------------------------------------

The minimum sample size is 100

Most statisticians agree that the minimum sample size to get any kind of meaningful result is 100. If your population is less than 100 then you really need to survey all of them.

A good MAXIMUM sample size is usually 10% as long as it does not exceed 1000

A good maximum sample size is usually around 10% of the population, as long as this does not exceed 1000. For example, in a population of 5000, 10% would be 500. In a population of 200,000, 10% would be 20,000. This exceeds 1000, so in this case the maximum would be 1000.

Even in a population of 200,000, sampling 1000 people will normally give a fairly accurate result. Sampling more than 1000 people won’t add much to the accuracy given the extra time and money it would cost.


--------------------------------------------------------------------

As to collecting larger data sets from the wider player base on general opinions, I completely agree. Larian should have run multiple surveys after launch and should also be doing it now. It's crazy that they are ignoring such an easy tool for feedback.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 12:20 PM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
Total : 1.2k votes

514 (41.2%) D&D
325 (26.0%) Larian's modified D&D
63 (05.0%) BG1 and BG2 modified D&D
346 (27.7%) Abstain
Voting closed
I actualy was not even curious about %, as about amount of people supporting either option ...
When people say here that "majority demand" and i keep seeing the same five nicks over and over, i wondered if that "majority" counts at least hundert people, or more like twenty. laugh

Asuming 1,2k would be "enough" it may seem that you are right ...
On the other hand, Larian have statistic from hunderts of thousand players (google sais that "over a million coppies was sold" so even if only 1/10 of players would allow Larian to gather the data, it would still be much better sample) ... and they see how much they are using their modified rules.
Can you honestly blame them to ignore 514 voters, when they see that (for example) 514 000 people seem to be quite fine with it? laugh

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Dunno ...
Encounter with Duegar is totally avoidable. O_o
How ? If you're lucky and/or if you choose the good answers ? Does that could be summarized by "totally avoidable" ?
Well ...
Yes, its one of possibilities.

You can talk to them (also i would not call picking the good answers the matter of luck, that would be RNG ... picking the corect answers is more like matter of knowing what you do), you can sneak past them, if you are cheesy enough you can sneak close to them and then kill them all (maybe except one or two?) by pushing them into the abyss (i tryed this one, it was fun). smile
Also you can approach them from the other side, so they dont even have high ground if you feel that combat is unavoidable.
And when another parts of Act 1 will be added, you will not even meet them at all. I know this one is curently impossible, but you get the idea. laugh

So, if you have at least one option except fight, yes i would dare to say that fight is avoidable. smile
And here you have more than one. laugh

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
even tho its not allways just about them.
DnD combats are supposed to be playable/enjoyable without having an advantage on every rolls isn't it ?
Sure, that is why i say its "not" allways just about them ...

My point is that if you are running head first against every encounter and keep loosing, you probably do something wrong.
Have you ever heard in DnD session Ranger or Rogue say something like "i shall go scout ahead" ?

Take that Minotaur encounter for example ...
Yes i know im using my knowledge from previous playthrough, but when your rogue go "scout ahead" preferably with blessing from Shadowheart, to maximize your chances that your will not be spotet ... you can easily lure Bulette to fight Minotaurs ... true, it may seem kinda pointless since Minotaurs heal once fight is done, after last patch, so now you need to time your entering the fight properly ...
No "advantage on every roll" used.
That is what im talking about. smile

Originally Posted by Pandemonica
Never used either in this game. And the battles were challenging, but not crazy so at least in my playthroughs.
+1 ... im not so dedicated to "never" use them tho ... but i seek high ground and backstab more like rarely.
Barells are boring to prepare for me, so i use them usualy only to kill that Cambion general in tutorial ... but i never had the patience as that guy who blow up whole goblin camp. laugh
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 12:25 PM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
10% or 1,000 is a good MAXIMUM sample size not a good MINIMUM sample size so yeah 1,200 is a good sample size even though it is above 1,000 because there are a number of abstains there.

Here is a website that covers the topic: https://www.tools4dev.org/resources/how-to-choose-a-sample-size

and here is the relevant section for you.

----------------------------------------------------------------

The minimum sample size is 100

Most statisticians agree that the minimum sample size to get any kind of meaningful result is 100. If your population is less than 100 then you really need to survey all of them.

A good MAXIMUM sample size is usually 10% as long as it does not exceed 1000

A good maximum sample size is usually around 10% of the population, as long as this does not exceed 1000. For example, in a population of 5000, 10% would be 500. In a population of 200,000, 10% would be 20,000. This exceeds 1000, so in this case the maximum would be 1000.

Even in a population of 200,000, sampling 1000 people will normally give a fairly accurate result. Sampling more than 1000 people won’t add much to the accuracy given the extra time and money it would cost.


--------------------------------------------------------------------

As to collecting larger data sets from the wider player base on general opinions, I completely agree. Larian should have run multiple surveys after launch and should also be doing it now. It's crazy that they are ignoring such an easy tool for feedback.

Yes, but you still need a methodology that gets them a usable, unbiased sample. Right now your usable sample size on reddit is 0. And you are right, Larian is the only one who can conduct a poll against the people who have purchased the product.
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Asuming 1,2k would be "enough" it may seem that you are right ...
On the other hand, Larian have statistic from hunderts of thousand players (google sais that "over a million coppies was sold" so even if only 1/10 of players would allow Larian to gather the data, it would still be much better sample) ... and they see how much they are using their modified rules.
Can you honestly blame them to ignore 514 voters, when they see that (for example) 514 000 people seem to be quite fine with it?

1,200 is typically considered enough. https://www.tools4dev.org/resources/how-to-choose-a-sample-size

I agree that Larian have plenty of statistics on what things people are doing, but that does not cover why they are doing those things.

Additionally, the game does not allow the player to choose to ignore the modified rules, advantages from height and backstab are applied regardless of players preferences and whether or not the player actively engages with those mechanics.

Let's take the surface producing cantrips as an example:

Using telemetry, Larian would have seen all players using those modified rules. By the logic you suggest, that means all players liked that modification. However, Larian looked at other forms of feedback and saw that the majority of players were not fine with it. This example does not support your logic that telemetry can convey player satisfaction with individual aspects of the combat system.

The telemetry can not answer the question posed in that reddit poll and it is an important question.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 12:45 PM
Well, i studied statistic a little on college ...
And i know there is quite important "IF" in creating a sample size.

I mean, concidering it contains as many variant people as posisble it would be enough.
And the less variant your sample is, the more skewed results you get.

Say, there is quite good chance that reddit will be probably used mainly by Americans (that is not racist, its just not so favorite in central europe ... i dont say we dont use it, but we have other sites ... simmilar as Twitter / Facebook), usualy between 20-50years, mostly computer games players ...

But your sample would need equal representation of people who play computer games, people who play DnD, people who played BG 1&2, people who did not, variety of ages, maybe even genders, and preferably from as variant corners of the world as possible.
And that is something reddit just can never asure.
It's almost impossible to get an unbiased sample because only the people who take part in early access and especially in multiple surveys during early access are the "most dedicated and involved of the playerbase."

The "high possible degree of bias" is inherent in any self selecting survey, which every survey on the game will be because Larian will not be able to force people to fill out a survey unless they want to. If you want to have a sample without such limitations, you'll be waiting forever to get it.

it is better to take a survey with the willing and available sample (while being conscious of the potential for bias) than never attempt a survey until you have the perfect sample (never).
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 12:54 PM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
Additionally, the game does not allow the player to choose to ignore the modified rules, advantages from height and backstab are applied regardless of players preferences and whether or not the player actively engages with those mechanics.
And that is where modders came. smile

Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
Let's take the surface producing cantrips as an example:

Using telemetry, Larian would have seen all players using those modified rules. By the logic you suggest, that means all players liked that modification. However, Larian looked at other forms of feedback and saw that the majority of players were not fine with it. This example does not support your logic that telemetry can convey player satisfaction with individual aspects of the combat system.
First you need to concider how many people across all platforms (that include the invisible one ... larian feedback button on launcher) was sugesting to remove the AoE effects ... and ofcourse the way they were presented, for example if you remember quite a lot surveys was created acording that topic, wich helped since Larian didnt only see that you are sugesting something, but also imediatly seen how many people supports your sugestion.
Then, there is question if there werent any mod that would do exactly that ... and if so, how many people downloaded it.

Then, there is important question about how dificiult it would be to change the game acording to this specific sugestion.

And then, finaly ... there is one last obstacle, and that is Larian development team itself.
Since if this all pass, it gets to their metaphorical table and they stand before simple question ... would this change affect our game in the way that is in contradition with our vision?
And if not ... there is nothing in the way of implementation.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 12:58 PM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
It's almost impossible to get an unbiased sample because only the people who take part in early access and especially in multiple surveys during early access are the "most dedicated and involved of the playerbase."

The "high possible degree of bias" is inherent in any self selecting survey, which every survey on the game will be because Larian will not be able to force people to fill out a survey unless they want to. If you want to have a sample without such limitations, you'll be waiting forever to get it.

it is better to take a survey with the willing and available sample (while being conscious of the potential for bias) than never attempt a survey until you have the perfect sample (never).
Sure ... that is theoretical "perfect sample" ...
Another known isue is that "perfect sample" aswell as "the average person" are non existant.

Its not "almost impossible", its litteraly impossible. xD
The goal here is try to get "as close as possible". wink
And the point is that you need to keep in mind that the more you deviate, the more distorted the result. Nothing more. smile
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 01:01 PM
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Yes, its one of possibilities.

You can talk to them (also i would not call picking the good answers the matter of luck, that would be RNG ... picking the corect answers is more like matter of knowing what you do), you can sneak past them, if you are cheesy enough you can sneak close to them and then kill them all (maybe except one or two?) by pushing them into the abyss (i tryed this one, it was fun). smile
Also you can approach them from the other side, so they dont even have high ground if you feel that combat is unavoidable.
And when another parts of Act 1 will be added, you will not even meet them at all. I know this one is curently impossible, but you get the idea. laugh

So, if you have at least one option except fight, yes i would dare to say that fight is avoidable. smile
And here you have more than one. laugh

As far as I remember, they're invisible until you're going next to the boat ("far" means 30 minutes ago, I just tried).
Every exemples you gave rely on metagaming and being able to continue the game through another way doesn't prevent you to meet them. 2 dialogs choices rely on dice rolls : fail = combats, 2 options are answers that leads to combats.

All you wrote is "you're wrong, you can avoid combats" but there are 0 arguments related to OP's point (overpowered encounters) except "metagaming" or eventually "save scumming".

Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Sure, that is why i say its "not" allways just about them ...

Sure, but remember our previous exemple ? You only talked about sneaking, pushing, remove OP advantage/disadvantage from highground to make combats "easier"... Not always... but often, it looks.

Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
My point is that if you are running head first against every encounter and keep loosing, you probably do something wrong.
Have you ever heard in DnD session Ranger or Rogue say something like "i shall go scout ahead" ?

Take that Minotaur encounter for example ...
Yes i know im using my knowledge from previous playthrough, but when your rogue go "scout ahead" preferably with blessing from Shadowheart, to maximize your chances that your will not be spotet ... you can easily lure Bulette to fight Minotaurs ... true, it may seem kinda pointless since Minotaurs heal once fight is done, after last patch, so now you need to time your entering the fight properly ...
No "advantage on every roll" used.
That is what im talking about. smile

Is that supposed to be easier if you scout or is that supposed to be very hard if you don't ?

Making things wrong and "learn to play" is fine and usual
Being driven to a specific way of playing is bad especially in a tactical game, especially in a role playing game and even more in a DnD based game that's supposed to offer tons of valuable options (you know, "players creativity").

The game shouldn't be harder if you don't use the cheeses. The game shouldn't have chesses (cheese >< choices for fun (i.e barrels) >< unexpected creativity (i.e molotov cocktails)
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
And that is where modders came. smile

There is no obvious way to remove the height advantage, the backstab property can be removed from individual weapon entries but height advantage is not as accessible. You can minimize how much the AI tries to climb and you can increase the height tolerance before advantage is applied but you can't remove it with mods right now as fair as i know. Either way i'm not sure how that relates to your assertion that telemetry provides useful information on the why's, it seems rather off topic.

Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
First you need to concider how many people across all platforms (that include the invisible one ... larian feedback button on launcher) was sugesting to remove the AoE effects ... and ofcourse the way they were presented, for example if you remember quite a lot surveys was created acording that topic, wich helped since Larian didnt only see that you are sugesting something, but also imediatly seen how many people supports your sugestion.
Then, there is question if there werent any mod that would do exactly that ... and if so, how many people downloaded it.


Your previous statement was the telemetry was sufficient to gauge player satisfaction, now you are saying that surveys by the community solved the problem? I'm happy that you were convinced by my argument that surveys would be beneficial.

Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Its not "almost impossible", its litteraly impossible. xD
The goal here is try to get "as close as possible". wink
And the point is that you need to keep in mind that the more you deviate, the more distorted the result. Nothing more.

Yes that is what i have already stated to Blackheifer, thank you for agreeing with me again.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 01:11 PM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
Ok so a good sample size of a population is 10%.
This is absolutely bollocks. There are NATIONAL-scale surveys that are made on sample of 1000 units and are generally considered reliable.

If anything a legitimate objection would be that is a self-selected group. Incidentally, the criterium of self-selection here is "People who are already interest in the game" so not exactly a compromising trait for what the survey is asking about.

If anything that subreddit has a strong pro-Larian bias and tends to be insanely passive-aggressive toward any hint of criticism to the game.
You'd feel right at home, by the way.
Posted By: vometia Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 01:53 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
This is absolutely bollocks.

Actually, that was a David Bowie album¹.

But let's not go down the Path of Snark, please.

¹ Probably.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 02:06 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
As far as I remember, they're invisible until you're going next to the boat ("far" means 30 minutes ago, I just tried).
Rly? I thought they were sneaking ...
Since if you sneak close enought to attack, they appeared last time i tryed. O_o

But it was patch 3, so i take your word for it.
Maybe something changed.

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Every exemples you gave rely on metagaming and being able to continue the game through another way doesn't prevent you to meet them.
Well ... yes, i used metagaming and i believe i even said so ...
But all that gives me is knowledge of where those encounters are, so i dont need to sneak through whole area exploring what surprises are waiting for me around the corner ...

Its totally possible to scout ahead in your first gameplay, as in your fifth ...
Its just easier in fifth, bcs you allready know where it will be just waste of time.

On the other hand, come on.
Completely empty village in the Underdark? If you approach it from norht, whole path paved with corpses?
Lets be honest with each other, if that dont raise at least one red flag, then nothing will. laugh

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
All you wrote is "you're wrong, you can avoid combats". There are 0 arguments related to OP's point (overpowered encounters) except "metagaming".
On the contrary ...
OP is talking about hard combats ... i provide options to avoid hard combats.

Either by avoiding combat in general, or by preparation that allows combat ... but makes it a lot easier.

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Sure, but remember our previous exemple ? You only talked about sneaking, pushing, remove OP advantage/disadvantage from highground to make combats "easier"... Not always... but often, it looks.
Well, after all its mechanic that is in game for you to use ...
If you dont like it and decide not to use it, its totally your decision ... and your consequences. :-/

OP sounded me like: Here are examples of hard combats.
I answered: Here are examples of how to make those specific combats easier.

Use them as you will, or dont. wink

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Is that supposed to be easier if you scout or is that supposed to be very hard if you don't ?
To be, or not to be, that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And by opposing end them.


Sorry, i didnt resist ... O:)
Cannot be unambiguously determined ... if you ask about my own opinion, it should depend of chosen dificiulty ... right now, we have only one, so as long as Larian take the data in the end and say something like: "many players died in this settings ... lets make it harder dificiulty" ... or on the contrary "many players survived without a loss of single character in this settings ... lets make it easier dificiulty".
I shall say it was good work. laugh

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Making things wrong and "learn to play" is fine and usual
Being driven to a specific way of playing is bad, especially in a tactical game and even more in a DnD game that's supposed to be about players creativity.
Agreed ...
The difference here is that i see creativity in scouting ahead, preparing your battlefield and expect the worse ...
And from some people (cant say everyone, but certainly some) it seem like DnD lovers see creativity in standing right in front of your oponent and simply take turns in bashing each other to head, until one of them fall on the ground dead. laugh

Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
There is no obvious way to remove the height advantage, the backstab property can be removed from individual weapon entries but height advantage is not as accessible. You can minimize how much the AI tries to climb and you can increase the height tolerance before advantage is applied but you can't remove it with mods right now as fair as i know. Either way i'm not sure how that relates to your assertion that telemetry provides useful information on the why's, it seems rather off topic.
HighGroundAdvantage=0;

I presume, it would look differently in actual game files, but ... you get the idea. laugh
I mean, all you need is removing the effect itself ... AI would still try to get to high ground and behind your back ... but once you simply remove it giving advantage, it would have zero effect. smile

Its lazy solution and it have certainly many holes, like people would certainly start asking "why did that Goblin spend five turns to get on that hill, when there is no advantage" ... but i was allways lazy writer so ... that is probably why i will never do this for living. laugh

Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
Your previous statement was the telemetry was sufficient to gauge player satisfaction, now you are saying that surveys by the community solved the problem? I'm happy that you were convinced by my argument that surveys would be beneficial.
Nothing changed by my side ...
As long as enough people take part in the survey, its usefulness is unquestionable.
And that's exactly what my argument was about ... if your opinion is supported by 500 people, then it is much weaker than if it is supported by 50,000 people.
Quote
HighGroundAdvantage=0;

I presume, it would look differently in actual game files, but ... you get the idea. laugh
I mean, all you need is removing the effect itself ... AI would still try to get to high ground and behind your back ... but once you simply remove it giving advantage, it would have zero effect. smile

Its lazy solution and it have certainly many holes, like people would certainly start asking "why did that Goblin spend five turns to get on that hill, when there is no advantage" ... but i was allways lazy writer so ... that is probably why i will never do this for living.

As I already stated "There is no obvious way to remove the height advantage". It is not accessible as a simple option to turn off. That is why i had to describe the ways that you can minimize it's effects instead of simply switching it off. I suggest you look in the game files if you want to provide such advice because i have looked and found no such switch. Also this is even more off topic than before.

Quote
Nothing changed by my side ...
As long as enough people take part in the survey, its usefulness is unquestionable.
And that's exactly what my argument was about ... if your opinion is supported by 500 people, then it is much weaker than if it is supported by 50,000 people.

You said you took statistics in college so you already know it is the relative numbers that support or oppose a concept that are important for a survey not the absolute numbers surveyed beyond a certain amount. This is, of course, dependent on achieving a good sample size, which as somebody who has covered statistics will know, is the case for that poll.

So there's not much else to say on either topic and this is starting to look like it could go in circles, you can have a good day.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 02:39 PM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
As I already stated "There is no obvious way to remove the height advantage". It is not accessible as a simple option to turn off. That is why i had to describe the ways that you can minimize it's effects instead of simply switching it off. I suggest you look in the game files if you want to provide such advice because i have looked and found no such switch.
That sounds odd ...
There simply MUST be some way wher game recognize that you should have advantage from high ground.
Then you have two ways of negating that ... either remove that recognization, or remove the effect. I dunno how to say it differently. :-/

Switch was simply an example, as it seems it was bad one ... but as i said, it was not supose to be manual for removing high ground. laugh

Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
You said you took statistics in college so you already know it is the relative numbers that support or oppose a concept that are important for a survey not the absolute numbers surveyed beyond a certain amount.
You are mixing two things together ...

One thing are relative numbers that determine relevance of the survey ... IF the sample is variant enough to be relevant.
Another thing are absolute numbers, that only shows how many people are supporting specific idea ... if the numbers are big enough to be relevant.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 03:40 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
Ok so a good sample size of a population is 10%.
This is absolutely bollocks. There are NATIONAL-scale surveys that are made on sample of 1000 units and are generally considered reliable.

If anything a legitimate objection would be that is a self-selected group. Incidentally, the criterium of self-selection here is "People who are already interest in the game" so not exactly a compromising trait for what the survey is asking about.

If anything that subreddit has a strong pro-Larian bias and tends to be insanely passive-aggressive toward any hint of criticism to the game.
You'd feel right at home, by the way.

So, you are saying they are biased? So essentially you are agreeing with me on why the sample is worthless. wink

Again I want as close as they can get to RAW, but I am not too worried if they can't do it. Life finds a way Tuco. The game is already amazing and will only get better.

By the way; to clarify, I am never passive-aggressive, and I never attack people. I attack behaviors*. I am not in agreement with people disguising abuse as feedback.


*But I promised to tone it down.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 03:51 PM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
So, you are saying they are biased? So essentially you are agreeing with me on why the sample is worthless. wink.
A sample that is generally biased IN FAVOR of the dev and the game is largely voting against one of their design decisions.
Take it as you want, but it doesn't seem to paint a flattering picture of the general feedback about this specific topic.

I'm confident the results would be even more hostile toward the changes Larian introduced if the context was, say, a "Dungeons & Dragons community".

Frankly I can name pretty much any minor or major forum I lurk or frequent and the outcome tends to stay pretty much the same across the board: most people don't like several of the changes Larian introduced and tend to be very vocal again it.
Sometimes so negative that I'm the one who has to play "good cop" and suggest to them to tone down their rants, pointing that "it's not all bad".

Incidentally, in case you missed, I also happen to disagree with a lot of what the OP said here. That doesn't mean I have to be in denial about how representative the survey he posted can be.
Now, we could have an argument about how much that survey ACTUALLY supports some of his claims, but that would be a different topic entirely.
Posted By: CJMPinger Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 04:01 PM
I'd actually argue that the opinions on this forum are fairly varied, this is some consensus on big issues and even then not really cause each is an individual person with their own opinion, The sharing identifier is the people here care enough about the game to go to its "Official Forum." You got many who think a certain mechanic is fine, and others who think that the mechanic is completely detrimental, and a bunch in between, this range extending to nearly every issue.

So I would say, combining this forum with Reddit, Twitter, and the official Feedback Form (that I may or may not have forgotten to fill out enough for everything I think) Larian (if they actually engage and use it) have a very nice and diverse sample size for the production of a videogame. Many companies use focus groups way smaller of a fraction than 1/10th of this forum, and most EAs would kill for the level of engagement the fans of BG/cRPGs are giving BG3 and its feedback.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 04:12 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
So, you are saying they are biased? So essentially you are agreeing with me on why the sample is worthless. wink.
A sample that is generally biased IN FAVOR of the dev and the game is largely voting against one of their design decisions.
Take it as you want, but it doesn't seem to paint a flattering picture of the general feedback about this specific topic.

I'm confident the results would be even more hostile toward the changes Larian introduced if the context was, say, a "Dungeons & Dragons community".

Frankly I can name pretty much any minor or major forum I lurk or frequent and the outcome tends to stay pretty much the same across the board: most people don't like several of the changes Larian introduced and tend to be very vocal again it.
Sometimes so negative that I'm the one who has to play "good cop" and suggest to them to tone down their rants, pointing that "it's not all bad".

Incidentally, in case you missed, I also happen to disagree with a lot of what the OP said here. That doesn't mean I have to be in denial about how representative the survey he posted can be.
Now, we could have an argument about how much that survey ACTUALLY supports some of his claims, but that would be a different topic entirely.


That's a good point. The thing is though that Baldur's gate 3 - this story - is a huge deal. We both know that. Its picking up where Descent From Avernus left off which is an incredibly popular module amongst higher-level groups. Whatever Larian writes is Canon at this point. So that subreddit is going to draw a huge number of people - who don't even own the game - who are going to have an opinion about what Larian is doing.

But here is the thing - at the end of the day it doesn't matter (to me) that Larian tweaks the rules - what matters is do they balance those tweaks by ensuring the encounters are challenging and fun. If no one was showing up on this forum saying the encounters are too difficult I would be worried. That people are showing up on the regular and doing just that makes me extremely happy.

This is a larger rant - but most game companies these days provide games with no real challenge, that feed people easy achievements and gear and in exchange they milk their little "herd" of gamers for microtransactions. This is the literal model for almost all game companies.

Larian is the opposite. And one of the few that is trying to do it the right way. No Microtransactions, just challenging, tactical encounters. Some gamers will struggle. That's fine, its not a reflection of Larian if they choose to quit.

I mean do you find it too challenging or unfair?
Posted By: mrfuji3 Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 04:12 PM
+1 for "500-1000" responses being a perfectly valid sample size. Basically every resource I've found says <1000 respondents gets you <5% margin of error. *Of course, you have to understand the implicit biases in your questions/available answers/and something about the response bias in order to use that knowledge.

Larian should definitely include a survey with the game, optimally one that pops up automatically the first time you close the game and then another one when you reach the end of the EA content. This would ensure that most players are reached.


+0 for "Too many overpowered encounters." This is either true or false depending on your definition of "overpowered." If you are going purely by D&D 5e rules/encounter calculator, then yes there are many BG3 encounters that would destroy a PnP party.

However, PCs are much more powerful in BG3: jump+disengage, high ground/backstab Advantage, BA shove, help restoring 1hp, everyone can use scrolls, and of course the unlimited resting. Particularly the last one: encounter balance in 5e is based off of the assumption that a party will face ~3-6 encounters in an Adventuring Day. A "Deadly" encounter becomes much easier if the party uses all their resources with the intention of long resting immediately after.
Posted By: DragonSnooz Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 04:40 PM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
But here is the thing - at the end of the day it doesn't matter (to me) that Larian tweaks the rules - what matters is do they balance those tweaks by ensuring the encounters are challenging and fun. If no one was showing up on this forum saying the encounters are too difficult I would be worried. That people are showing up on the regular and doing just that makes me extremely happy.

I mean do you find it too challenging or unfair?
Too challenging? Depends on how much you weight fore-knowledge. Once you have the knowledge about the encounter it's easy, but for a player on a first playthrough... The game balance allows for little room to be proactive or reactive. Players should be able to react to a bad situation and turn it around, not get buried by damage because the enemy has Advantage from being a few meters up in space.

Unfair? Not really, but it's definitely lop-sided. The impact of verticality giving Advantage for attacks and Disadvantage on incoming attacks is enormous. The lop-sided homebrew makes combat stale. Too often the player is required to make the same few choices.

Combat, in early access, is stale and requires fore-knowledge.
Posted By: CJMPinger Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 04:54 PM
Honestly, I find the combat too easy in some regards and too hard in others. If I try to play like normal DnD I get punished while if I play like Divinity I get rewarded. I'd really like things to be balanced towards dnd Ruleset and then add some divinity quality spice after its tested at the base, so we know what does and doesn't work for BG3 as a videogame based on 5e.
Quote
Now, we could have an argument about how much that survey ACTUALLY supports some of his claims, but that would be a different topic entirely.

Yeah that is a reasonable question about the survey because of the vague nature of the question asked and we both noted the self selecting nature of such surveys. It was only meant to be a quick solution to the request for a poll about whether or not people perfer larians modifications to combat not an entire thread itself.

I honestly regret posting it because of how it derailed the topic with people challenging the statistical validity of it, dismissing basic concepts and wandering even further off topic into modding, genuinely did not expect that to happen when the sample size was fine.

Sorry OP.
Posted By: Saito Hikari Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 07:01 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Frankly I can name pretty much any minor or major forum I lurk or frequent and the outcome tends to stay pretty much the same across the board: most people don't like several of the changes Larian introduced and tend to be very vocal again it.
Sometimes so negative that I'm the one who has to play "good cop" and suggest to them to tone down their rants, pointing that "it's not all bad".

Incidentally, I'm looking at one of those right now.

https://www.resetera.com/threads/baldurs-gate-3-early-access-ot-rolling-the-dice.301235/page-37

I imagine none of these people aside from Tuco are even on the Larian forums.

Originally Posted by Blackheifer
But here is the thing - at the end of the day it doesn't matter (to me) that Larian tweaks the rules - what matters is do they balance those tweaks by ensuring the encounters are challenging and fun. If no one was showing up on this forum saying the encounters are too difficult I would be worried. That people are showing up on the regular and doing just that makes me extremely happy.

This is a larger rant - but most game companies these days provide games with no real challenge, that feed people easy achievements and gear and in exchange they milk their little "herd" of gamers for microtransactions. This is the literal model for almost all game companies.

I feel like the game is difficult for the wrong reasons. The systems are designed in a way that I feel that combat is entirely balanced around getting to high ground/front-loaded surprise round and first round alpha strikes to do as much as you can before the enemy party gets to retaliate. There's a huge difference in difficulty from going into a fight using conventional tactics VS splitting up the entire party/one party member initiating combat while the other three sneak around avoiding sight cones and drop stuff/shove people with 100% success chance because of the whole time bubble thing going on, and the combat difficulty feels like it's balanced for the latter rather than the former. It's one thing to reload to approach a fight from a different angle, and then there's outright abusing clairvoyance.

Things like this are why you still get complaints about the RNG despite Larian doing everything in their power to mitigate it through their own systems. It has an extreme psychological effect in that anything without advantage or anything that doesn't benefit from advantage rolls (spells targeting saving throws) suddenly feels absolutely awful to use. Incidentally, damaging spells that do target saving throws tend to be useful in that later variants inflict half damage if an enemy saves against them, rather than no damage at all. Problem is, there are very few such spells in EA right now, and most classes don't start seeing them until level 5+ anyway - which we probably won't see in EA period. That and many classes getting access to extra attack at level 5 is already going to result in a wildly different balancing situation.

(When the Bard class is released, people will get to play around with one such spell that does half damage upon a successful save, one exclusive to Bards called Dissonant Whispers. It's one of the Bard's few offensive spells at low levels, and it targets enemy wisdom saves. Full damage + enemy is immediately forced to move as far away from you as they can if they fail (will probably get turned into a frightened effect in BG3), half damage if they succeed.)

Incidentally, I just noticed you joined the forums about a month after I made a massive thread outlining how all of these systems negatively impact the overall experience in the long term. It's rather telling that the thread existed for a whole week, and no one even came into the thread to directly argue against any of the points being made at any point in that time period. I've just become even more pessimistic since due to the radio silence.

https://forums.larian.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=96428&Number=757307#Post757307
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 07:44 PM
Originally Posted by Saito Hikari
I feel like the game is difficult for the wrong reasons. The systems are designed in a way that I feel that combat is entirely balanced around getting to high ground/front-loaded surprise round and first round alpha strikes to do as much as you can before the enemy party gets to retaliate.

That's fair, but there are multiple reasons being aggressive makes sense and results in victory. if you are always facing the enemy instead of running away you are denying them advantage. If you play a defensive game you are trading some form of healing or mitigation for damage that could even out the action economy. Additionally you have to trust that your teammates will back your play the same way you would back theirs (in terms of multiplayer) and they will respond with the same level of aggression.

Originally Posted by Saito Hikari
Things like this are why you still get complaints about the RNG despite Larian doing everything in their power to mitigate it through their own systems. It has an extreme psychological effect in that anything without advantage or anything that doesn't benefit from advantage rolls (spells targeting saving throws) suddenly feels absolutely awful to use. Incidentally, damaging spells that do target saving throws tend to be useful in that later variants inflict half damage if an enemy saves against them, rather than no damage at all. Problem is, there are very few such spells in EA right now, and most classes don't start seeing them until level 5+ anyway - which we probably won't see in EA period. That and many classes getting access to extra attack at level 5 is already going to result in a wildly different balancing situation.

People can complain about RNG but what game - based on dice rolls - were they expecting? The smart play is to focus on spells and abilities that target an opponents weak saving rolls. Larian gives us a HUGE advantage by letting us examine the monsters before combat and work out where they have weaknesses, which is why the best spell to use against the Bullet is "Command:Halt" - since its wisdom is 10 and it doesn't have wisdom saving proficiency. Its also weak against Dissonant Whispers.

Originally Posted by Saito Hikari
(When the Bard class is released, people will get to play around with one such spell that does half damage upon a successful save, one exclusive to Bards called Dissonant Whispers. It's one of the Bard's few offensive spells at low levels, and it targets enemy wisdom saves. Full damage + enemy is immediately forced to move as far away from you as they can if they fail (will probably get turned into a frightened effect in BG3), half damage if they succeed.)

Dissonant Whispers is in game. GOO Warlocks get it on the bonus spell list. It works just like you mentioned.

https://baldursgate3.wiki.fextralife.com/Dissonant+Whispers


Originally Posted by Saito Hikari
Incidentally, I just noticed you joined the forums about a month after I made a massive thread outlining how all of these systems negatively impact the overall experience in the long term. It's rather telling that the thread existed for a whole week, and no one even came into the thread to directly argue against any of the points being made at any point in that time period. I've just become even more pessimistic since due to the radio silence.

https://forums.larian.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=96428&Number=757307#Post757307

I have been on the forums for years but I forgot my old password. Too many guesses so its probably locked. So I just made a new account.

I read your post - and here is the thing, its all great points and if Larian decided to be more strict about where Advantage was applied I would be 100% behind that. However they also need to fix concentration so we can properly use spells that provide advantage on the battlefield and not lose the slot because somebody tossed a alchemist fire at your feet and you took 2 burn damage, or add the Feat that allows you to ignore the first ten points of damage against having to make a concentration check and giving you advantage on those checks.
Quote
The systems are designed in a way that I feel that combat is entirely balanced around getting to high ground/front-loaded surprise round and first round alpha strikes to do as much as you can before the enemy party gets to retaliate. There's a huge difference in difficulty from going into a fight using conventional tactics VS splitting up the entire party/one party member initiating combat while the other three sneak around avoiding sight cones and drop stuff/shove people with 100% success chance because of the whole time bubble thing going on, and the combat difficulty feels like it's balanced for the latter rather than the former. It's one thing to reload to approach a fight from a different angle, and then there's outright abusing clairvoyance.

I found the same approach to be necessary for DOS2 and it dragged after a while because it was the same approach every combat. It might be tactically efficient but personally i didn't find it enjoyable time after time. DOS2 was strategic sure (need to consider a variety of workable builds from the beginning), but tactically it often converged to a limited number of methods (alpha strike or surfaces/barrels).

It didn't help that many people considered an extremely OP alpha strike on repeat to be consistently enjoyable tactics so it was hard to discuss alternative non alpha strike based tactics. I didn't realize that's what they meant when everybody said it was tactical until i was halfway through the game and i had just accepted that most fights would require a reload after dying the first time to learn who and where to alpha strike.
Posted By: Prince Ibrahim Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 02/06/21 08:26 PM
Thanks for the link. I've submitted a ticket.

Ignoring the tendency of some users to go into a discussion assuming that the OP is a complete back-birth who has never played a game before, there are a number of good arguments made here on both sides. The statistical discussion has reminded me why I flat-out refuse to teach stats, no matter how often the department chair tries to talk me into it ( mad ), so I will skip all of that. I would like to address some of the other points, though.

1) Scouting is all well and good (and is the reason that I stopped trying to play anything other than a rogue), but if you scout into a group of mobs and they spot you (remember the RNG thing?) you're dead before you have a chance to assess the situation.

2) Barrelmancy is a thing, and some people may actually find it entertaining. I don't. If barrelmancy is the only "right" strategy for playing the game, then I'm not interested in playing.

3) Having to reload 40 times a week because most encounters start with the party outnumbered, surprised and having already lost the high ground doesn't make a game "tactical", it makes it poorly designed. Similarly, a game in which the best tactic is ALWAYS "climb the highest structure and play King of the Hill while yeeting oil barrels down onto the enemy" is also not "tactical", it's one-dimensional.

Since the I was foolish enough to drop $60 on a game in the mistaken belief that it would be a D&D game, rather than DOS 3, I'm forced to do what I can to make the game playable FOR ME. I don't care if the game is playable for you. It'd be nice if we all could enjoy it, but if I have to choose, I choose me. People who love barrelmancy already have multiple DOS games to slake their love of oil barrels. I just want another Neverwinter Nights, or something vaguely similar.

(As an aside, anyone who wants to Venmo me the $60 I spent on EA can buy my silence; I'll delete my forum account and mothball the game until 1.0 releases. DM me your account and I'll send you a request for payment.) thankyou
Posted By: Droata Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 03/06/21 02:49 AM
Personally, I found the combat serviceable. I didn't think it was terribly hard. I'm not super keen on barrelmancy and free disengages, and backstab cheese, etc., but I would much prefer that they focus their efforts on fixing the dialogue and giving us some immersive characters and story.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 03/06/21 07:02 AM
Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
1) Scouting is all well and good (and is the reason that I stopped trying to play anything other than a rogue), but if you scout into a group of mobs and they spot you (remember the RNG thing?) you're dead before you have a chance to assess the situation.

I mean if you are in stealth mode and you cross a red vision cone area then you roll to see if you have been spotted. I mean I am legitimately curious how you are handling scouting. Are you unlinking the rest of your party from your stealthy party member? Are you wearing padded armor? Are you stealthing right up to the mobs and standing in multiple red vision cones?

Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
2) Barrelmancy is a thing, and some people may actually find it entertaining. I don't. If barrelmancy is the only "right" strategy for playing the game, then I'm not interested in playing.

Barrelmancy is never needed. The people who think so are just not expending the effort to try to handle the combats without it. If barrelmancy ever gets removed those people will find themselves in the same place you are.

Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
3) Having to reload 40 times a week because most encounters start with the party outnumbered, surprised and having already lost the high ground doesn't make a game "tactical", it makes it poorly designed. Similarly, a game in which the best tactic is ALWAYS "climb the highest structure and play King of the Hill while yeeting oil barrels down onto the enemy" is also not "tactical", it's one-dimensional.

Like I said, if you want to get better maybe consider checking out multiplayer. I personally would be interested to see how you are handling combat and pre-combat encounters. You had mentioned previously that the Duegar fight was "unavoidable" which it isn't at all. That tells me you are missing a lot of things in your environment.

And hey, maybe this is you playing at your peak and you feel that you cannot possibly improve. Which if that is what you believe then it is of course true.

anyway, the Larian discord is below:

https://discord.com/invite/larianstudios

Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
Since the I was foolish enough to drop $60 on a game in the mistaken belief that it would be a D&D game, rather than DOS 3, I'm forced to do what I can to make the game playable FOR ME. I don't care if the game is playable for you. It'd be nice if we all could enjoy it, but if I have to choose, I choose me. People who love barrelmancy already have multiple DOS games to slake their love of oil barrels. I just want another Neverwinter Nights, or something vaguely similar.

Well the good news is when the game is fully released they will likely have various modes of difficulty, such as Story mode. So you can simply have a combat experience that meets with your level of expertise and not get stressed about encounters.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 03/06/21 01:12 PM
Discussions in any games to handle hard encounters :
" I used this spell which has a good synergy with my other character's feature, I positioned 2 companions there and 2 other here. I builded my characters this way. Oh and I use this spell to buff and this one to have a better resistance to these damages".

Discussions in BG3 :
"You can avoid it, go higher, don't use true strike or faery fire, drink/eat at each turn, push, jump and don't forget about metagaming."

Being creative using the vast majority of the game's tools is never rewarded. You're only rewarded if you do what the game wants you to do or if you find "creative" ways to break the system.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 03/06/21 02:14 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
I used this spell which has a good synergy with my other character's feature.
Like using electricity spells (witch bolt), after your cleric or druid makes enemies wet (create water)?
Yeah ... totally not an option in BG-3

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
I positioned 2 companions there and 2 other here.
In other words, you send them higher.

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
I builded my characters this way.
So this other game have so badly created tooltips, that you dont even know wich stats is your class suposse to have? :-/

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Oh and I use this spell to buff and this one to have a better resistance to these damages.
Sadly, BG-3 dont have any resistance potions that could be used before fight, and last until long rest, nor any cleric buff spells ... so once again, totally not an option. laugh
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 03/06/21 02:25 PM
Yeah that's definitely the kind of discussions / the kind of tips we can read A LOT on this forum (and any other).

Learn to read/understand wink wink wink

(3 smiles because I know you like them)
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 03/06/21 07:22 PM
At least we dont get "git gud" kind of tips. :-/
Right?
Posted By: Prince Ibrahim Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 12:39 AM
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
At least we dont get "git gud" kind of tips. :-/
Right?
No, never...

I realize that replying to Blackheifer is a waste of time, but here goes:

Your assumptions about my lack of skill are both wrong and completely besides the point. The point is that in a game "based on D&D" these encounters SHOULD NOT HAPPEN at these levels. Unless the intention is for 1.0 to have the group at level 5-6 by the time you hit the Underdark, these battles are WAY BEYOND the power level of the standard 4-PC party. Therefore, the only way to win them is to manipulate the rules.

On that note, I'd like to hear how YOU handled the Spectator encounter without barrelmancy and without just parking everyone on the high ground. Explain to me, in your infinte wisdom, how you cleverly used the abilities of your party synergistically in order to defeat a Spectator with double eye rays and double HP, as well as the half-dozen charmed 4th level Drow rangers that add into the combat, simply using the spells and weapons the game makes available to that point. It still wouldn't matter, because THAT WASN'T MY POINT. You can mansplain to someone old enough to be your father's older brother all you want. It doesn't change the fact that Larian has a well-established history of throwing characters into battles against significantly superior opponents, or that they are completely ignoring the VERY WELL ESTABLISHED balance that D&D has built over ~40 years between monsters and PCs, seemingly just so they can keep the "game play" consistent with DOS (which, as I stated earlier, I find to be a completely s4!t game).

That having been said, thank you to everyone who actually engaged with the topic I brought up. I really only meant it for the devs (I didn't realize there was a direct feedback link, so thanks again for the link!), but it's nice to see that other people out there are noticing this problem and thinking about it.
Posted By: DragonSnooz Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 05:25 AM
Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
At least we dont get "git gud" kind of tips. :-/
Right?

Your assumptions about my lack of skill are both wrong and completely besides the point. The point is that in a game "based on D&D" these encounters SHOULD NOT HAPPEN at these levels. Unless the intention is for 1.0 to have the group at level 5-6 by the time you hit the Underdark, these battles are WAY BEYOND the power level of the standard 4-PC party. Therefore, the only way to win them is to manipulate the rules.
I'll be real, it's been hard to explain how encounters are balanced in D&D 5e to folks who haven't played. The encounter design in Baldur's Gate 3 is that of a dick-ish/powertripping DM (for lack of nicer terminology to use, I really did think about what descriptive words to use), especially in the Underdark.

I really dislike the Underdark encounters simply because it is where I'm absolutely forced to use Larian's homebrew. I can't just be a cool warlock/wizard fighting two minotaurs with my party, I have to exploit the homebrew.
Posted By: vometia Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 06:11 AM
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
At least we dont get "git gud" kind of tips. :-/
Right?

Right.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 06:28 AM
Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
I realize that replying to Blackheifer is a waste of time, but here goes:


On that note, I'd like to hear how YOU handled the Spectator encounter without barrelmancy and without just parking everyone on the high ground. Explain to me, in your infinte wisdom, how you cleverly used the abilities of your party synergistically in order to defeat a Spectator with double eye rays and double HP, as well as the half-dozen charmed 4th level Drow rangers that add into the combat, simply using the spells and weapons the game makes available to that point. It still wouldn't matter, because THAT WASN'T MY POINT. You can mansplain to someone old enough to be your father's older brother all you want. It doesn't change the fact that Larian has a well-established history of throwing characters into battles against significantly superior opponents, or that they are completely ignoring the VERY WELL ESTABLISHED balance that D&D has built over ~40 years between monsters and PCs, seemingly just so they can keep the "game play" consistent with DOS (which, as I stated earlier, I find to be a completely s4!t game).

So emotional.

1) The charm the beholder uses is a double-edged sword. It breaks on minor damage, so every time he releases one and you hit it there is a 50% chance they attack the beholder depending on who is closest. This further saturates the environment with targets for the beholder to go after besides yourself. It's sort of brilliant because its almost like the fight is designed to upend and randomize the action economy. You may own the action economy, or you may not.

2) The Explosive plants that are littered through the battle area can be used to; damage the drow to release them from the charm or damage the beholder who often moves itself into a position near one. Just shoot them.

3) There is a Spear you can find that deals additional damage to enemies with multiple eyes and has a chance to blind them. You may have found it by now if you dealt with the owlbear.

4) This is a good battle to bring in the Ogres if you managed to convince or bribe them to allow you to call them into battle since they will fight on your side.

5) There is also the Spectator in a Bottle you can use for some funny spectator on spectator violence. of course you have to kill that spectator then as well. To be honest I only use this method if I want to randomize the action economy further and up the possible challenge level.

6) This is one of those encounters you want to save potions of speed for as well as Hill Giant strength, void bulbs and other explosive items. Invisibility pots can give you an edge allowing your strongest fighter to get close (lae'zel), pop a speed pot use the wyvern poison and then go to town on the spectator.

7) Glut is also a huge help here, especially if you use him to Myconize a Deugar or a Minotaur. Duegar are easier to transplant.

So just some background. I played original Vanilla WoW when it released in 2004 and I was a hardcore Raider that worked with a lot of other guilds on theorycrafting for the higher-end Raid dungeons and bosses from AQ40 to Naxxramus. I was one of the 1% to complete Naxx when it was originally released. So to me, I love a good challenge like this, the harder the better.

I totally get that not everyone likes that sort of thing, and meaning no disrespect it's my hope that on release they have multiple difficulty settings that will solve the issue for both of us. I want a harder difficulty setting - and a LOT of people feel the same way. I get there are people that find these fights frustrating to no end and don't want the hassle.

I feel that Larian gives us all the tools we need to handle these encounters but this favors meticulous (possibly AR), highly focused people like myself and is a disadvantage to more casual players. This is actually in some ways no different than actual D&D where you will have DM's who like to up the challenge level for the players depending on skill level and creativity, and DM's who are far more casual and focus on the social aspect of the play session for more casual gamers. At the end of the day you won't make everyone happy.
Posted By: Niara Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 07:38 AM
Blackheifer would make some good points, if they didn't continually feel the need to dip the beginning and ends of their posts in back-handed insinuation, belittling tone and condescension, or personal boasting. Maybe lay off with that?

Answering the complaint that a particular fight is unbalanced and unfair without abusing Larian's abusable cheese mechanics, by listing a whole bunch of things that you should considering bringing to the fight with excessive meta-knowledge, or more of said cheap mechanics isn't really that helpful... it mostly just reaffirms the point being made.

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1) The charm the beholder uses is a double-edged sword. It breaks on minor damage, so every time he releases one and you hit it there is a 50% chance they attack the beholder depending on who is closest. This further saturates the environment with targets for the beholder to go after besides yourself. It's sort of brilliant because its almost like the fight is designed to upend and randomize the action economy. You may own the action economy, or you may not.

This is a legitimate point - however it trades on the 'tactic' of "Hey, use YOUR turns to break charms and HOPE that you get LUCKY enough that the drow decide to attack the Spectator before you! (They might not, and even if they do they still consider you an enemy and will attack you during and after the fight with the spectator)"

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2) The Explosive plants that are littered through the battle area can be used to; damage the drow to release them from the charm or damage the beholder who often moves itself into a position near one. Just shoot them.

This is saying: You don't NEED to use Larian's cheap cheesy things... you can just use the terrain that's littered with an excess of explodable objects! This is like arguing that you don't need to drink water - you can just drink the naturally occurring H2O instead.

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3) There is a Spear you can find that deals additional damage to enemies with multiple eyes and has a chance to blind them. You may have found it by now if you dealt with the owlbear.

Legitimate point, although, I only tried using the spear on a spectator once or twice, and it truly didn't seem to have very much effect at all worth noting; blinding the spectator (when it worked) didn't really inhibit it much. It certainly didn't stop its eye rays. On a related point, I'm generally not a fan of "Here's this overtuned fight, but here is also a special magical maguffin that is only going to be useful in this fight that will make it better." It's a cheap, dull and utterly uninteresting story mechanic and even worse as a combat device.

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4) This is a good battle to bring in the Ogres if you managed to convince or bribe them to allow you to call them into battle since they will fight on your side.

Which is equivalent to saying "The fight is not overpowered for the party or too hard - you just have to bring along something even more overpowered to beat it with!" That's not strategy, it's a cop out. It's an admission that the fight IS overtuned. Also, once again, it's relying on coming into the fight and situation with foreknowledge of it.

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5) There is also the Spectator in a Bottle you can use for some funny spectator on spectator violence. of course you have to kill that spectator then as well. To be honest I only use this method if I want to randomize the action economy further and up the possible challenge level.

This one I did just for the fun of it... but in reality, both spectators treat you as an enemy, and are far more likely to target your party than each other.

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6) This is one of those encounters you want to save potions of speed for as well as Hill Giant strength, void bulbs and other explosive items. Invisibility pots can give you an edge allowing your strongest fighter to get close (lae'zel), pop a speed pot use the wyvern poison and then go to town on the spectator.

This is equivalent to saying "The fight isn't overtuned, you just have to metagame the hell out of it by saving a bunch of specific items specifically to use for it!" Again, no, that doesn't fly.

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7) Glut is also a huge help here, especially if you use him to Myconize a Deugar or a Minotaur. Duegar are easier to transplant.

This is the same as point 4, although I'll allow it a bit more leeway in terms of fairness, since Glut is more likely to be with you organically at this point, possibly. Unlikely still, considering but more likely than point 4.

Ultimately, they have not actually answered Ibrahim's question, either - they asked how they used the abilities of their party members intelligently to best the fight. None of THESE solutions have anything to do with using your actual party or their class abilities.... it's almost all external stuff that could be just as easily activated by moderately well-trained dog (#CompanionScratch):

1) Get other people to fight for you, you might get lucky!
2) Get other things to do damage for you, there's lots of them!
3) Use the maguffin that was conveniently designed for this fight!
4) Get another monster to fight for you, then kill it afterwards!
5) Get other monsters to fight for you!
6) Stockpile strong items (and explosives!) to use for this fight - like you know it's coming!
7) Get other monsters to fight for you!

NONE of those have anything to do with using your actual party and their actual class abilities strategically or intelligently.

If more than half of your suggestions involve getting other, stronger monsters to fight on your behalf, that rather sounds like a resounding admission that the fight is, in fact, overtuned.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 07:52 AM
Originally Posted by Niara
Ultimately, they have not actually answered Ibrahim's question, either - they asked how they used the abilities of their party members intelligently to best the fight. None of THESE solutions have anything to do with using your actual party or their class abilities.... it's almost all external stuff that could be just as easily activated by moderately well-trained dog (#CompanionScratch):

I must have missed it when he provided me his party and class composition, could you link that information for me? make sure it contains his loadout plus available abilities.

Originally Posted by Niara
1) Get other people to fight for you, you might get lucky!
2) Get other things to do damage for you, there's lots of them!
3) Use the maguffin that was conveniently designed for this fight!
4) Get another monster to fight for you, then kill it afterwards!
5) Get other monsters to fight for you!
6) Stockpile strong items (and explosives!) to use for this fight - like you know it's coming!
7) Get other monsters to fight for you!

NONE of those have anything to do with using your actual party and their actual class abilities strategically or intelligently.

If more than half of your suggestions involve getting other, stronger monsters to fight on your behalf, that rather sounds like a resounding admission that the fight is, in fact, overtuned.

I categorically reject that D&D isn't about utilizing your surroundings to defeat the enemy. I'd also like to point out that the Spectator Fight is OPTIONAL. You can completely avoid that entire area. In fact MOST combat in the game is avoidable.

The overwhelming wrong assumption here is that you HAVE to fight this Spectator. This is the same person who insisted, despite all evidence to the contrary, that you HAD to fight the Duegar - and this was pointed out to them multiple times, by multiple people.

Even if you trigger the fight you can RUN AWAY.

I reject the idea that you don't have options in this game. I reject that using your environment, or running away, or avoiding encounters through dialogue are not CORE parts of D&D. Descent to Avernus, the actual D&D module that precedes these events has examples of ALL of that. There are mobs that will kill you that you need to run away from, there are evil creatures you have to make deals with or have good dialogue checks with, there are things in your environment you have to notice that will help you.

And using potions and buffs during combat isn't metagaming, you are just utilizing resources and being prepared. if you are going to poke around in a clearly dangerous place its reasonable to assume you should be prepared right?

and listen if you want Solasta then play Solasta, its a great game. It has its own limitations though.
Posted By: Saito Hikari Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 07:57 AM
To be honest, I didn't really find the Spectator fight that hard when I did it about six months ago. In fact, I was mildly surprised to learn that it was considered one of the hardest fights in the game, when I struggled to remember what the fight even was, with how people were describing it.

Then again, I was playing with the Bard mod, and my Bard/Wyll/Gale Shatter(ed) and Thunderwave'd the shit out of everything in that encounter, with Shadowheart throwing out Guiding Bolts too. I don't think the fight lasted longer than 3 rounds for me. Then again, one could chalk down my experience as 'ridiculous alpha strike'.
Posted By: Morfeu Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 08:24 AM
The point: ----------------------->
____________ you

You just missed it.
This isn't a "Give me tips to win fights"
This is "Most battles are at their core unbalanced since I'm supposed to abuse gimmick homebrewed systems to win them!"
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 08:33 AM
Originally Posted by Morfeu
The point: ----------------------->
____________ you

You just missed it.
This isn't a "Give me tips to win fights"
This is "Most battles are at their core unbalanced since I'm supposed to abuse gimmick homebrewed systems to win them!"

Right and I don't agree. Unfortunately with this kind of thing it's impossible to disagree and not provide examples of the tools available that can be used to win these fights.

So you can say nothing, and let the person rant or agree with them and get a pat on the head, or take the risk of disagreeing with them but not use any evidence to back it up.

And the Op's post was full of inaccuracies - they mischaracterized the fight as "unavoidable", claimed the Duegar could all cast "infinite Mirror Image" (not true only Ghek can cast it and only twice based on the two scrolls he is carrying which you can steal from him and prevent him from using) and didn't provide any concrete examples of how it was overpowered against what he had available.
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
I reject the idea that you don't have options in this game. I reject that using your environment, or running away, or avoiding encounters through dialogue are not CORE parts of D&D. Descent to Avernus, the actual D&D module that precedes these events has examples of ALL of that. There are mobs that will kill you that you need to run away from, there are evil creatures you have to make deals with or have good dialogue checks with, there are things in your environment you have to notice that will help you.

and listen if you want Solasta then play Solasta, its a great game. It has its own limitations though.

Nobody mentioned solasta, but since you bring it up, most of those options are also in that game. They are just better balanced, which is what OP and Niara would talking about, balance in BG3 not balance in any other game.

Seems widely off topic
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 08:34 AM
Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
I'd like to hear how YOU handled the Spectator encounter without barrelmancy and without just parking everyone on the high ground. Explain to me, in your infinte wisdom, how you cleverly used the abilities of your party synergistically in order to defeat a Spectator with double eye rays and double HP, as well as the half-dozen charmed 4th level Drow rangers that add into the combat, simply using the spells and weapons the game makes available to that point.
I presume this sentece was meaned for Blackheifer ...
Yet i would like to add my experience.

First time i get to that place, it was from temple side ...
So first thing i found was petrified Drow ... funny enough, my own PC was Drow, and i wondered if i may save the Drow, if i shatter his stone prison ... so i equipped 2H mace and smash the statue for so long, until dead Drow fall to my feets ... then i found loot. laugh
So, as greedy bastard as Galanis is ... i smashed every Drow i found ... i was quite surprised when Spectator jumped on me, and it was huge relief when he de-petrify one of two remaining Drows, and i realized that my greedyness just saved me a lot of throubles. laugh

Anyway, i droped most of them down, since i was Warlock with pushing eldrich blast ... if that was a cheese or not i dunno, nor i care to be completely honest. laugh
And Spectator was locked in fear for multiple rounds bcs of Lae'zel frightening strike ... yes, the gods of dices standed by me that day. smile

In the end it simply dont seemed like so hard encounter.
Posted By: Rhobar121 Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 08:35 AM
Right now the fight is a bit buggy (at least for me). The drows only attack my team, which made the fight much more difficult than before. However, you can still win it without tricks such as bunches or high terrain (mainly because there is no comfortable place to climb).
The most important thing is a good team composition. Shadowheart + Lae'zel are able to kill most of the opponents together during a turn. If you additionally have a druid in your group, there is no opponent who can survive for more than 2 turns (unless you have extremely bad rng).
In addition, it is worth having Gale in your team along with the magic missile amulet to finish everything that ends up with low hp.
Posted By: Try2Handing Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 08:52 AM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
I must have missed it when he provided me his party and class composition, could you link that information for me? make sure it contains his loadout plus available abilities.
Apparently you didn't care enough to ask the OP that yourself, Blackheifer. Niara is right - you didn't answer the OP's question: "how you used the abilities of your party synergistically [...] simply using the spells and weapons the game makes available to that point." It's not about whether the tactics you listed are valid or not, it's that you didn't answer OP's question in a satisfactory manner.

I'm joining this conversation because after all these posts no one has actually addressed what the OP brought up, and I myself am curious about the solutions, if they exist, to his problems. Blackheifer, I think you've been missing Ibrahim's main point the whole time: what Ibrahim is trying to say is that these encounters are poorly balanced. And to support his point, he listed more detailed stats such as enemy damage vs party members' health, enemy in-game stats vs rule book, etc. Not a post in here has actually addressed these details. All I've read is that "oh but this encounter can be avoided" and "you can utilize the environment and/or external circumstances" - none of these have anything to do with party composition, individual party member abilities, and synergy between party members.

I'm getting the main point here is that these encounters are poorly balanced, a point which some folks here seem to be missing, it seems. Whether the OP is accurate or not about whether a fight is avoidable or not, that's not his point at all. I don't know why you keep clinging to that as an argument against the OP.

Imagine voicing your opinion saying that an encounter is poorly balanced, and someone answers you with "but you can avoid it". By saying that you automatically acknowledge that it is poorly balanced. If you don't think it's poorly balanced, you should explain why you think it's not.

Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
1) They automatically start with surprise ... AND they routinely violate the 5E rules in ways that make them WAY more powerful (Multi-shot with a crossbow? Exploding arrows at level 4? Infinite uses of Mirror Image?).

2) A Bulette's mean damage on a bite is 30 hp, which is more health than anyone other than Lae'zel has. It bites AFTER using Deadly Leap, so whomever it targets is instantly downed. The Minotaurs somehow get to use Gore and then Multi-attack afterwards (when they don't even have multi-attack as an option).

3) The Spectator should be a CR3 monster (and therefore fairly easy for a L4 party to deal with.) Instead, it has twice as many HP as it should, extra eye rays, more actions than it should (4 eye rays a turn? Really?).

I haven't seen a single post addressing these specific points the OP brought up. Are these duergars indeed violating 5E rules? If they are, is there a good reason for this violation? If the bulette is so deadly, how do you soak up its damage/tank it? What about the spectator, is it violating 5E rules too? And no, I don't think answering these points with "this fight is avoidable" or "but you can exploit this and that in the environment" is satisfactory.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 09:18 AM
Originally Posted by Try2Handing
I haven't seen a single post addressing these specific points the OP brought up. And no, I don't think answering these points with "this fight is avoidable" or "but you can exploit this and that in the environment" is satisfactory.

So just to be clear, we have one side who is screaming that the Homebrewed extra abilities that players have makes the game too easy, and you have another vocal group that says that the encounters are overpowered - myself I am fine with the balance but I would like to see some of the more exploitative stuff- that players have -removed or tightened up.

But so be it:

Spectator:
Other posters have mentioned specific abilities which are helpful on these fights and party composition that is good for the encounter. I guess you didn't see those? I think Ragnarok mentioned a few that Lae'zel's Frightening strike was extremely effective as well as push attacks from Eldritch blast (Wyll), and Thunderwave(Gale). None of that is Homebrew btw. using potions is apparently homebrew despite being in the DMH so we will leave those out I guess.

Dissonant Whispers is amazing as a spell if you have a GOO lock. A Ranger or Astarion with two handed fighting or a ranged attack is great for hitting multiple drow to break the charm effect.
Shadowhearts Guiding Bolt OR Inflict Wounds upspelled to level 2 is a shocking level of damage, plus her divine channel ability to create a decoy is great for protecting the group by giving disadvantage on attacks against her and party members close by.

Personally at 800+ hours I have used every single party composition imaginable and beaten this encounter with just the abilities we had. Like other experienced players have said, I just don't even think its that challenging. And I don't use barrelmancy or throw people around or use mods.

Bullette -

Ok, this is a rough encounter. Again an optional one but still can go badly. I do agree that the Leap damage and the attack can be a bit much, at best you will lose a party member. The game tries to help you here by placing you in Turn Based mode which you should use to spread the party out and hide if you can.

After that you need to use Lae'zels Frightening Strike, and Shadowhearts Command:Halt abilities immediately and repeatedly.

The surprise issue: Surprise is bugged right now and the Duegar don't always start with surprise, nor do I think its intended that they start with surprise except under really unlucky circumstances. I think you have to see none of them (fail all perception checks) and try to access the boat. I am not 100% sure as while I have had a surprise round here, its not a typical occurrence.
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
So just to be clear, we have one side who is screaming that the Homebrewed extra abilities that players have makes the game too easy, and you have another vocal group that says that the encounters are overpowered

They are not contradictory stances, they are two symptoms of the same issue. The homebrewed extra abilities let larian balance the encounters assuming that those abilities would be used every turn. So you have overpowered abilities and overpowered encounters, which makes the combat very swingy and that's not good when combined with RNG and 5e's bounded accuracy. Part of why people complain about the RNG.

Since those abilities do make the game too easy and people don't want insta-win homebrew they try to play without those abilities meaning that the encouters balanced for the OP homebrew are overpowered if you don't follow the insta-win methods.

People would like combat to be balanced so that you get engaging options not insta-win options when using either RAW 5e or larians modifications, which is not currently the case.

You've said you want choice, that's a great position. This is also what the people in this thread want. They want to have the choice to use all the examples you provide and more (5e RAW). Currently they don't feel that they can choose any style they want as they are punished if they choose the wrong one (5e RAW).

So they left feedback of larian to see here, not for you to negate.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 09:52 AM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
So just to be clear, we have one side who is screaming that the Homebrewed extra abilities that players have makes the game too easy, and you have another vocal group that says that the encounters are overpowered


You've said you want choice, that's a great position. This is also what the people in this thread want. They want to have the choice to use all the examples you provide and more (5e RAW). Currently they don't feel that they can choose any style they want as they are punished if they choose the wrong one (5e RAW).

So they left feedback of larian to see here, not for you to negate.


Ok fair enough, I'd like to understand this better, can you give me an example of choices you can make with single player that would not give you an ability set that would work with this encounter? Assuming level 4, current choices and no mods, no barrelmancy, no cheap stuff, no cheats. Any other limitations?



If you haven't guessed I will replicate those choices and use them to kick this Spectator across the Underdark like a multi-eyed soccer-ball smile
Nah, i have no interest in explaining other peoples feedback to you. Based on your posting history I don't think you will be convinced by anything anyone says on the matter so it would be a waste of time for both of us.

Even if i did, the foreknowledge you have about the fight means that it would never be an authentic reproduction of a normal playthrough making the entire process meaningless for this dicussion. Anyone could beat any fight with any restrictions you suggest if they had your 800 hrs of practice.

I was just pointing out the falsehood in your assertion that the issues are completely separate.

You can have a nice day.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 10:07 AM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
Nah, i have no interest in explaining other peoples feedback to you. Based on your posting history I don't think you will be convinced by anything anyone says on the matter so it would be a waste of time for both of us.

Even if i did, the foreknowledge you have about the fight means that it would never be an authentic reproduction of a normal playthrough making the entire process meaningless for this dicussion. Anyone could beat any fight with any restrictions you suggest if they had your 800 hrs of practice.

I was just pointing out the falsehood in your assertion that the issues are completely separate.

You can have a nice day.


I say good day sir! Ahahaha! laugh

Fair enough, you are right. You could say that for an inexperienced player on the first playthrough who has no experience with D&D this is a rough encounter that will likely result in a TPK. Then again an equal number of people seem to feel they ran into this for the first time and had no problem with it. Maybe there is a common denominator, but just like the number of licks it takes to get to the center of a tootsie pop, the world may never know. ;D
Posted By: fylimar Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 12:13 PM
Here are some things, I do in the mentioned fights:
With the Bulette it is good to try and get highground, somewhere the Bulette can not jump too - like those mushrooms. Try using Misty Step: Gale and Wyll and OC who is warlock or wizard can get it via their spell list - I would always take that spell, it's really useful to get your squishy spellcasters out of the way and you get an amulet of Misty Step from Mintharas corpse. I normally try mistystepping away with the characters that can do it (to the big mushrooms, that aren't reachable via foot - the Bulette can't jump there) and use spells and ranged attacks to get Bulli down. The character, that doesn't have Misty Step, might die, but you can revive them later. For me, that works well. The problem is, that the Bulette can appear anywhere, that makes it one of the toughest fights for me. You can't really plan ahead. There are some points, where she always appears (like right before that cave, where you find that nice drow armor). I sometimes prepare an ambush there, if I manage to escape her until then - use Lae'Zel as lure, she can survive the best.

The Spectator is a tough one too. I try to keep the spellcasters and ranged attackers in the background and attack with Lae'Zel (or fighter OC). But before that, I make sure to destroy the petrified drow (I did that in my first playthrough, when I saw, that I can do it, because I thought, that if those drow come alive, they are probably not nice ... the chance to meet a Drizzt in the Underdark is pretty slim). You can reach the ones, that can't be killed by a melee (for melee you need a blunt weapon btw) with Eldritch Blast for example, so that you don't need to sacrifice a spell slot. I give the thief (either Astarion or OC) the Misty Step amulet and position them behind the Spectator, poison their weapons with the strongest poison possible (that would be Wyvern) and let them sneak attack - that does a lot of damage.

The Gith patrol I nowdays just barrelmance because I'm lazy and the fight takes so long, but when I try it proper, I position the group up on the highground - preferrably not all together, but spread out a bit. And when they teleport up, I try to get them down again via thunderwave. Lae'zel is normally down with that really hard hitting fighter, because I let her do the talking (everything else wouldn't make sense roleplaying wise if you have recruited Lae). It's tough, but with using everything, I have - fire arrows, poisoned weapons, spells- , I nomally succeed after a while.
The Gith patrol is really hard imo - I find that fight even worse than Bulli.

My least favorite is the spider matriarch though. I find it hard, plus I really hate spiders, so two nogos. I do it anyway even though, I wouldn't need to (you can go to the stone for the Necromancy of Thay via invisibility potion and patience - if mother dearest is right above you, don't grab it, wait until she moved on), because I'm always very proud of me, when I manage to kill the spiders. There, I let Astarion sneak in to destroy the spider eggs (first the one downstairs, then the one on the first plattform and lastly the one on the second - that will automatically trigger the fight, I never managed to do it without the mother noticing me).

I hope, that helps a bit, but I would love to have difficult settings too. I like a challenge, but sometimes, I just want to play out the story and not have to deal with fights, that last half an hour. Tbh, when I use barrels, then mostly to just make the fights shorter (like the group around Dror Ragzlin or the gobbos in the courtyard), because it just takes so long to take them out one by one.


Edit: I forgot, because it'S second natur for me: always use Bless and whatever you have to buff and protect the party. It helps a lot imo.
Posted By: zamo Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 02:15 PM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
I think Ragnarok mentioned a few that Lae'zel's Frightening strike was extremely effective as well as push attacks from Eldritch blast (Wyll), and Thunderwave(Gale). None of that is Homebrew btw.

Frightening strike is homebrew though. It is way much stronger that its tabletop counterpart.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 02:18 PM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
Well the good news is when the game is fully released they will likely have various modes of difficulty, such as Story mode. So you can simply have a combat experience that meets with your level of expertise and not get stressed about encounters.
No need to be patronizing and make it an issue of "expertise." The issue is that Larian's kind of "challenge" in combat is not really challenging but rather just repetition, tedium, aggravation, and stupidity. And whereas all those things may be great fun for you and some others, there are those of us for whom it is decidedly not fun.

I largely agree with the OP. And I am yet to see anyone actually posting a thoughtful and well-reasoned counter-post, as opposed to just attacking or flaming the OP.

Edit: Okay, credit to @fylimar's last post for being a thoughtful and helpful post.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 02:29 PM
Originally Posted by zamo
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
I think Ragnarok mentioned a few that Lae'zel's Frightening strike was extremely effective as well as push attacks from Eldritch blast (Wyll), and Thunderwave(Gale). None of that is Homebrew btw.

Frightening strike is homebrew though. It is way much stronger that its tabletop counterpart.

Sorry, the correct name of that ability is Menacing Attack and it appears to work exactly the same as listed in the PHB.

"When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to attempt to frighten the target. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll, and the target must make a Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, it is frightened of you until the end of your next turn."

What's different?
Posted By: zamo Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 02:38 PM
The effect of frightened status is different.


Frightened status (RAW):
A frightened creature has disadvantage on Ability Checks and Attack rolls while the source of its fear is within line of sight.

The creature can’t willingly move closer to the source of its fear.

I believe BG3 forces frightened creatures run away and prevent them from using any action. (If they didn't change it recently.)
Posted By: mrfuji3 Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 02:43 PM
Originally Posted by TestyMcTesterson
<snip> Even if i did, the foreknowledge you have about the fight means that it would never be an authentic reproduction of a normal playthrough making the entire process meaningless for this dicussion. Anyone could beat any fight with any restrictions you suggest if they had your 800 hrs of practice.
To pull this quote out, I approve of this phenomenon in games. There should be (optional) fights that you're likely to TPK on and have to reload, using foreknowledge to win. That's the beauty of rpg video games: character death doesn't mean you lose a character you were attached to. On a normal difficulty in crpgs, I expect this to happen maybe a couple times per act. If this doesn't ever happen, then the difficulty of the game is too low.

Menacing Attack
In BG3, against a single strong enemy, it's basically an auto-win if it hits (and the enemy fails its ST) since the enemy loses its turn and takes free damage. Then you use Menacing Attack on your next turn, repeating the process.
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 02:51 PM
Originally Posted by zamo
The effect of frightened status is different.


Frightened status (RAW):
A frightened creature has disadvantage on Ability Checks and Attack rolls while the source of its fear is within line of sight.

The creature can’t willingly move closer to the source of its fear.

I believe BG3 forces frightened creatures run away and prevent them from using any action. (If they didn't change it recently.)

Oh I see, yeah ok that makes sense. The status debuff Frightened - which doesn't specifically say it forces you to run away - assumes you would run which of course opens you up for AOO. They are literally using the spell Fear - which does force you to flee instead of just the debuff.

On balance I could see how they could imply that, and it does affect us the same way.
Posted By: Pandemonica Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 03:02 PM
Originally Posted by zamo
The effect of frightened status is different.


Frightened status (RAW):
A frightened creature has disadvantage on Ability Checks and Attack rolls while the source of its fear is within line of sight.

The creature can’t willingly move closer to the source of its fear.

I believe BG3 forces frightened creatures run away and prevent them from using any action. (If they didn't change it recently.)

The effect I see when I use menacing attack, is a little visual effect around their head, and they stand in place cowering not being able to attack.
Posted By: mrfuji3 Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 04/06/21 03:50 PM
Originally Posted by Pandemonica
The effect I see when I use menacing attack, is a little visual effect around their head, and they stand in place cowering not being able to attack.
Interesting. Maybe Larian changed it in a recent patch? I suppose it's slightly more balanced than the enemy also running away...

Is anyone else seeing this behavior?
Posted By: ldo58 Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 06/06/21 08:30 PM
Originally Posted by Niara
Quote
3) There is a Spear you can find that deals additional damage to enemies with multiple eyes and has a chance to blind them. You may have found it by now if you dealt with the owlbear.

Legitimate point, although, I only tried using the spear on a spectator once or twice, and it truly didn't seem to have very much effect at all worth noting; blinding the spectator (when it worked) didn't really inhibit it much. It certainly didn't stop its eye rays. On a related point, I'm generally not a fan of "Here's this overtuned fight, but here is also a special magical maguffin that is only going to be useful in this fight that will make it better." It's a cheap, dull and utterly uninteresting story mechanic and even worse as a combat device.

I got totally zapped in the underdark encounter with the specator and ditn't retry it, but there's another spectator, without drow support, near the cave of the Gnoll encounter. That's an easier fight which I completed successfully. And it' s also my feeling that the Vision-of-the-Absolute-spear did not seem to bring any notable advantage during the combat.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 06/06/21 09:58 PM
Originally Posted by ldo58
there's another spectator, without drow support, near the cave of the Gnoll encounter.
Seem like someone hit the wrong crate.
laugh
Posted By: Full Bleed Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 07/06/21 05:36 AM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
7) Ending my turn with my ranged weapon in hand instead of my shield (if I have one) and melee weapon because 1) you don't get an Attack of Opportunity against another mob that moves past you or away unless you have a melee weapon equipped - and 2) a shield only protects you if you are holding it and not your ranged weapon- there is a little switch that lets you toggle what you are currently holding.
What's the current cost within the action economy for a ranged player to do this every round?
Posted By: rumblemaker Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 07/06/21 06:18 PM
Originally Posted by Prince Ibrahim
Speaking as a casual video gamer and hard-core D&D player, this game has too many "overpowered" encounters,...
Ibrahim

I kind of like going against opposition that is a little OP. It makes me use my brain instead of just running in and fireballing everything.

Once I started using the team as a whole and strategizing my attacks, everything went pretty smoothly and there wasn't a group I couldn't take. (except for the Gith - they just mopped the floor with me and danced on my innards)

In fact, I actually wiped out the entire goblin army in the courtyard with just my thief. It took me a couple of hours, but he got it done!
Posted By: Niara Re: Too many overpowered encounters! - 07/06/21 06:20 PM
Originally Posted by Full Bleed
What's the current cost within the action economy for a ranged player to do this every round?

None at all; it's completely free, unlimited and abusuable - not in a proper implementation of the rules, but in Larian's game at least.
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