Larian Studios
Posted By: Aeridyne Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 05:28 AM
Mod edit following thread merge. Original thread title; "Six Character Party"


So, I'm an old school gamer and I usually just let things pan out. HOWEVER... This is a special game to me, being a Baldurs Gate, which is one of my favorite games of all time, as are all of the good old D&D computer games. And in nearly every one of those games from the old DOS TSR games to the original Baldurs Gate I & II, Icewind Dale I & II, Neverwinter etc etc. Almost every one of those games had... A SIX CHARACTER PARTY.

Now, maybe I've missed something, and they (Larian) already plan on doing a six character party, but it really sounds like they are shooting for only 4. And I understand doing that with multiplayer is different, and if 4 players is the max actual players for multi but still have a 6 char party, that's fine (1 or 2 players could control multiple chars in multiplayer). But if we are limited to a 4 person party throughout the game (not counting little minions etc, like actual "player/party" characters, I'm doing to be very disappointed honestly.

I know you guys will make a great game and I absolutely loved DOS II, wonderful and amazing game, and I kind of assumed that BG III may well end up looking very, very similar. And it does, and that's fine that your mechanics and such look similar and the world is different (and more polished). But, without a 6 character party, it's almost like I'm going to be playing the next Divinity, in the D&D world, not so much, BG III if you understand what I mean. All the other games I fondly remember were the 2D isometric view that is totally iconic at this point, and all of those games had a 6 character party. Maybe it would have been cool to do some interesting adaptation of the perspective of the old games like BG I & II and the pause but I'm sure that playing turn based will be just fine. So, I'm ok with the very different flow of the game from the original's real time pause to something more of an improved DOS II world & battle system, but I'm not ok with a 4 person party... Just not at all.

Please, please, please, make the game with a six person party. I should have piped up immediately when the game was announced probably but, I figured I'd watch and see where it goes, and hoped, that 6 person party was just kind of a given. I was concerned since DOS II was only 4, but I hoped you'd all say, well, every other BG & similar games were six character, so we HAVE to do six! AND I WOULD HAVE AGREED! Haha.

I hope others will agree and if this hasn't been brought up by players yet, I don't know how it could have possibly been over looked since that was such a big part of not only the first two Baldurs Gate games but nearly every other good D&D computer game. Maybe the devs won't like me bringing up this idea really at this relatively late stage, but, I hope that we can all see what grander scale 6 characters brings to the table...
Posted By: Tarorn Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 05:38 AM
I think its 4 because of the amount of background, options, dialogue, pathways to play that they are bringing to the table & it would literally be to expensive to go to 6 man party - either that or we will be waiting another 2 years for the finished game.
Im an old school gamer too but I quite like a smaller party to manage - not that 6 is bad - 4 gets the balanced party fighter/cleric/thief/mage.

I do think Larian studios listen though so who knows what might happen by the time the game is in its final state - but for me 4 is enough to enjoy.
Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 06:37 AM
See it's too constraining though. Like, that's literally going to be everyone's party to a T. In Divinity you could mix up classes a lot easier, but this, it's D&D, it's Baldurs Gate, and it needs to be different.

You don't want to take forever to heal or not be able to remove curse / level drain / poison, so you need that cleric. If you don't have a hefty front line fighter you're going to have a bad time. No rogue means eat trap city and no lock picking doors or chest for you which is absurdly dreadful and no one would pick that so literally every party will have a rogue, and similarly to the other 3 no one wants to miss out on having at least some of the vast library of powerful and useful wizard spells and some good AOE for the tougher battles, that is when the wizard/sorc shines. If you had a 6 character party you basically have two slots you can add in some real spice and change up your party. 4 characters is 100% predictable and pretty much may as well be locked in imo.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 07:39 AM
I firmly agree that a four character party is too small. Honestly even five characters would be an improvement. For all the reasons Aeridyne gave it's too constraining. If we're able to to swap between party members then it results in potentially making some characters less attractive based on what class your main character is, which is the main negative point for me. For instance, I don't like playing fighters or other non-spellcasting classes. My interest is in magic-focused characters like sorcerors, warlocks and wizards. I might play a cleric possibly but that's a long shot. So that means it becomes less likely that I'll have room in my party for other spellcaster companions, which sucks because companions are a huge part of what makes an RPG fun for me. If an RPG doesn't have companions, that's a huge mark against it in my opinion. It makes experimentation harder too since you have less of a fallback. I don't want to have to play through classes I don't find enjoyable to play in order to interact with other characters I might find interesting. I really hope this is one of those things that they decide to change when they see it in early access because I can see it really taking away from the experience.
Posted By: Nyanko Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 07:48 AM
If they were to make a 6 characters party now, with all the permutations involved, we would get the game in 3 years, maybe.
Posted By: Momento Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 08:30 AM
I haved played d&d since first edition and the class structures were more true in previous editions. In the about 15 campaigns I have played in d&d 5e it has very rarely been a fighter/cleric/rogue/arcane caster set up, and I have normally played 4 man group. There is nothing you really need. You have short rest that gives plenty healing and long rest heals you completely. For locked doors and traps you dont need rogue anymore. Anyone can have the prof. If you do want some healing mid fight, a paladin, bard, druid or sorcerer (with subclass) will do the trick. Most spell casters gets decent AoE spells, and any warrior class will work for tanking (fighter, paladin, ranger, barbarian). Even other classes tanks just as well if you build them up for it.

Personally I am probably going to run around and solo most of the content with 1 character that is buffed by the other 3. I am just going around with a group sometimes to hear the banter etc. 2 more buffers would be nice, but having 6 characters in a turned based game is going to slow it down quite a bit and many will also be put off by the need to level up, equip and control so many characters.


Posted By: Alodar Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 09:01 AM
Originally Posted by Aeridyne
So, I'm an old school gamer and I usually just let things pan out. HOWEVER... This is a special game to me, being a Baldurs Gate, which is one of my favorite games of all time, as are all of the good old D&D computer games. And in nearly every one of those games from the old DOS TSR games to the original Baldurs Gate I & II, Icewind Dale I & II, Neverwinter etc etc. Almost every one of those games had... A SIX CHARACTER PARTY.

Now, maybe I've missed something, and they (Larian) already plan on doing a six character party, but it really sounds like they are shooting for only 4. And I understand doing that with multiplayer is different, and if 4 players is the max actual players for multi but still have a 6 char party, that's fine (1 or 2 players could control multiple chars in multiplayer). But if we are limited to a 4 person party throughout the game (not counting little minions etc, like actual "player/party" characters, I'm doing to be very disappointed honestly.

I know you guys will make a great game and I absolutely loved DOS II, wonderful and amazing game, and I kind of assumed that BG III may well end up looking very, very similar. And it does, and that's fine that your mechanics and such look similar and the world is different (and more polished). But, without a 6 character party, it's almost like I'm going to be playing the next Divinity, in the D&D world, not so much, BG III if you understand what I mean. All the other games I fondly remember were the 2D isometric view that is totally iconic at this point, and all of those games had a 6 character party. Maybe it would have been cool to do some interesting adaptation of the perspective of the old games like BG I & II and the pause but I'm sure that playing turn based will be just fine. So, I'm ok with the very different flow of the game from the original's real time pause to something more of an improved DOS II world & battle system, but I'm not ok with a 4 person party... Just not at all.

Please, please, please, make the game with a six person party. I should have piped up immediately when the game was announced probably but, I figured I'd watch and see where it goes, and hoped, that 6 person party was just kind of a given. I was concerned since DOS II was only 4, but I hoped you'd all say, well, every other BG & similar games were six character, so we HAVE to do six! AND I WOULD HAVE AGREED! Haha.

I hope others will agree and if this hasn't been brought up by players yet, I don't know how it could have possibly been over looked since that was such a big part of not only the first two Baldurs Gate games but nearly every other good D&D computer game. Maybe the devs won't like me bringing up this idea really at this relatively late stage, but, I hope that we can all see what grander scale 6 characters brings to the table...



Fortunately D&D 5e eliminates the rigid roles of old school 2nd Edition AD&D so your six character party isn't necessary.

Every character can spend Hit Dice to heal themselves at a short rest.
Every character can stabilize a fallen comrade.
Clerics, Rangers, Bards, Druids, Paladins all have access to healing spells.
Fighters can heal themselves with second wind.
It is also my experience playing and DMing D&D 5E that healing spells are very inefficient (they don't scale well) and the absolute best way to "heal" is through crowd control and damage (Kill them before they damage you).

You don't need a rogue if you want a stealthy character. If you choose the Urchin background your Warlock, Cleric, Wizard or Fighter can be proficient in Sleight of Hand, Stealth, Thieves' Tools and Disguise KIt.

You can make a Githyanki Abjuration Wizard (will be my first EA character) who wears Chain armor, wields a Great-sword who psionic jumps into the front line.


D&D 5E is a much more flexible system than old school D&D giving you the flexibility to create an effective and balanced adventuring group with a smaller number of characters.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 03:29 PM
Hey OP, this issue has been discussed quite extensively in some other threads, so I won't repeat myself here. Suffice it to say that FWIW I completely agree with you. The party-size reduction to four is a major strike against this game for me, perhaps the biggest negative of all. And this would be the easiest of Larian's controversial game design choices to address by giving us an optional toggle to increase party-size up to six with the understanding that combat encounters have been designed and balanced for a party-size of four. No extra work for Larian other than a little bit of UI work. But Larian's track-record is against giving players any optional toggles, so this can happen only if some caring and considerate person out there puts in the time to create a mod for it.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 04:47 PM
As others said, this was discussed already in other threads and I would like to have more companions to have more variety, but in short: the latest versions of D&D create adventures balanced for a 4-man-party, and there´s only 5 companions so the possibility of a highest party count is marginal at best.
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 04:51 PM
Originally Posted by Tarorn
I think its 4 because of the amount of background, options, dialogue, pathways to play that they are bringing to the table & it would literally be to expensive to go to 6 man party - either that or we will be waiting another 2 years for the finished game.
Im an old school gamer too but I quite like a smaller party to manage - not that 6 is bad - 4 gets the balanced party fighter/cleric/thief/mage.

I do think Larian studios listen though so who knows what might happen by the time the game is in its final state - but for me 4 is enough to enjoy.


That's somewhat of a rationalization for a false dilemma because not every member of the party has to have dialogue. If that is the reason for limiting the party to four then fine, limit a party of six to having up to four characters with dialogue and the other two can be silent henchmen who fill an important role of providing redundancy to class and skill sets. Heck, I'd be fine with only one member of a six character team having dialogue with the other four being relatively silent henchmen. Often when I play BG & BG2 I use anywhere from 1-4 custom NPCs with only 4-1 organic NPCs who have dialogue. The only time I ever played with all five non-custom NPC personalities with their native dialogue was the first play through. After that I would substitute 1-4 custom NPCs that I would roll up and then rotate the native NPCs in and out. I really don't care if every member of my party has dialogue as long as I can have an ideal party of six.
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 04:58 PM
The more I read the comments in the forum the more I get the impression that Larian is basically just going to put D&D skins on a different game so it will look like D&D, but it won't really play or feel like D&D. I guess it's a good thing I can still play BG & BG2.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 05:24 PM
Well, the thing is in 5e the campaigns are based in 4 players, the monsters and creatures like the gnomes, not-green-goblins, cambions, Ilithids, dragons, etc look exactly like ingame in the PHB books, over 95% of the actual ruleset of 5e is being implemented ingame, some references about the lore, like Astarion having problems with running water or the question "What are parents?" of the githyanki Lae`zel; skill mechanics or action-based combat,etc

I understand that feels different from 2e of BG games or 3e of NWN games, but that´s how it is 5e now. You could like it or not, but it´s still D&D.

Believe me, Larian could mess up the game in many ways, but in lore or mechanics if they do something, they have permission and direct approval of WoTC. they´re very invested in the project.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 08:39 PM
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler

That's somewhat of a rationalization for a false dilemma because not every member of the party has to have dialogue.

Well, unless something changed, that’s not going to be the case here. No matter if you use companions or self-made mercenaries they will talk. Larian RPG is not a traditional single protagonist RPG. It’s multiplayer RPG which is possible to be played in SP. As such for the most part you have full control over your companions and you will want to use them. See this demo around 37:55. Keep in mind that here Swen approaches the situation with the companion.

Frankly, I found D:OS2 tedious to play with only 4 characters as I felt the game wasn’t tailored well to managing all the party by one player.
And am not sure if it will play bette for worse in BG3. There is visible attempts to make BG3 companions more of... well, companions. Which is great. Still many systems and designed seem to be transferred over.
Posted By: Tarorn Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 08:58 PM
Round two...

I wont argue that 4 is somehow better than 6 as the people who want a six man party ..want a six man party...my views are:

1. If you love BG1&2 and that is your benchmark then you need to potentially view this as a whole new D&D game as Larian Studios are not trying to make BG3 in the same literal sense as 1&2. This is their game,20 year later & you can just see how much it means to them & how much effort is going into the game - watch panel from hell.
2. I stopped playing D&D 15-20 years ago but from what I can tell 5E is designed for a 4 party crew - Solaster seems to be doing the same thing.
3. Yes the game will of course use some of Larian studios IP but to say its just a re-skin is nonsense - do they have unlimited funds..no..they do have 300+ people (who they are paying salaries to) working on the game - they cannot do everything, I think Sven mentioned limitations on a couple of occasions during the latest discussion.
4. Absolutely its D&D everything they are doing is trying to bring 5E rules as closely as they can (& in a format that works for video gaming) it has a massive D&D vibe - you cant say it has any other, its a D&D game plain & simple.
5. It may not be in EA but multi classing is coming to the game 4 party members can realistically play as more than 4 (well give you more variants & play styles) & at level 10 max you wont overly penalise your character build (now im going back a long time here but as I recall multi classing could be weaker at higher levels - not so much earlier on...but alot of fun to play).


Ok..hit me with it...



Posted By: Seraphael Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 10:22 PM
I prefer a 4 member party. Turn based combat (which is very much preferable to real-time w/ pause for a number of reasons) will be slow with bigger parties, especially if you throw animal companions, familiars and summons into the mix. Also, Larian has wisely chosen to opt for fewer companion all over with the trade-off being that each character will be considerably more fleshed out. Finally, a smaller party makes the party selection/character build decisions matter more. Larian has got this.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 10:39 PM
Originally Posted by Seraphael
Also, Larian has wisely chosen to opt for fewer companion all over with the trade-off being that each character will be considerably more fleshed out.

With companions filling double duty as companions and playable shells the math isn't as straightforward. D:OS2 companions were quite lacking - mostly I think, due to having be vague enough so they can be whatever potential Coop buddy will want them to be. BG3 companions have already have shown a bit more personality though.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/08/20 11:55 PM
Originally Posted by Seraphael
I prefer a 4 member party. Turn based combat (which is very much preferable to real-time w/ pause for a number of reasons) will be slow with bigger parties, especially if you throw animal companions, familiars and summons into the mix. Also, Larian has wisely chosen to opt for fewer companion all over with the trade-off being that each character will be considerably more fleshed out. Finally, a smaller party makes the party selection/character build decisions matter more. Larian has got this.

Combat is slow in BG3 because of its specific combat system, and not because of party size. If a party size of six would make combat more slow, that's not the fault of the party size but rather the fault of the combat system. So don't try to make party size the fall-guy for the flaws of the combat system.

Also, more fleshed-out companions at the cost of fewer companions is not a "wise" tradeoff by any means. If that's the case, why not go down to party size of two? Then we could have even more fleshed-out companions!! It's merely a reflection of your personal preference to have fewer companions. Everything in a videogame is an interconnected mass of tradeoffs and balancing acts. It is perfectly reasonable for other fans to expect both very well fleshed-out companions AND a significant number of companion choices if that's what they want. And the tradeoff to have all that could come in some area, for example by not having all voiced characters or not having romances. There is no automatic or default justification that the tradeoff should have to be fewer companions.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 12:02 AM
One of my dream for this game is a party of 6 , especially for variety.
I don't care D&D 's standard number of players. I want to customize my team and 5 companions instead of 3 is MANY more combinations.

(I can see you Larian : an owlbear cub, a spider or an intellect devorer is NOT a companion).
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 12:04 AM
Originally Posted by kanisatha

Also, more fleshed-out companions at the cost of fewer companions is not a "wise" tradeoff by any means. If that's the case, why not go down to party size of two? Then we could have even more fleshed-out companions!!

Kim Kitsuragi from Disco Elysium would suggest that it's not a terrible idea. At least sometimes, for some games. Also skills in DE where kind of like companions as well.

Either way, it has nothin to do with BG3 smile
Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 12:12 AM
Originally Posted by Seraphael
Finally, a smaller party makes the party selection/character build decisions matter more. Larian has got this.

I don't understand how this statement leads to that conclusion. I mean I do, but I don't. That in a smaller party selection/character build matters more? To me It matters less because you already know exactly what the rest of your extremely limited party is going to be. Arguably I would tend to say anything other than a fighter/paly/barb/ranger is going to be in essence a handicap. Unless you have no qualms about resting after every fight to regain your spells but I always saw that as terribly unrealistic for the story although in most games it doesn't matter. The smaller your party is, and the less companions there are to choose from, the more limited in choices you've been given, the less flexibility you have... how does that add up to you? All of that is less options, not more. More limitations. Sure you could argue that makes your character choice matter more (but it really doesn't as the more limited everything is, the more obvious your choice becomes out of necessity) and that is not what previous BG games have been which have all had plenty of choice on your character composition and six characters allows for a more diverse and colorful group than 4. Why not just make it one character then and make it a super painful choice so it really, really matters? Because it's silly and it's not BG and the same goes for 4 imo.

Its just not going to feel like BG to me without a six character party. It's just not. And a lot of other people seem to agree. And I know for certain there are a lot of other older gamers out there like myself that are usually silent but will feel the same way. D&D lore / world etc yeah but it's going to feel like DOS II with BG world skin. I mean, it's literally almost the exact same game, just change the story / setting. (Which is a lot yes, but I mean mechanics wise and how it will play.) And I'm not always one of those people that necessarily wants to see changes in a game. They could make 15 games just like DOS II with different or continuations of stories and I'll probably love the heck out of them all. They could be D&D games too and I'd enjoy them just as much or even more. But were talking about BG here... It SHOULD be similar to the others. Just because 4 characters is easier and they can probably use a bunch of the same net code etc doesn't mean that's what they should do. I'm frankly sick of co op games always being 4 players now, like some unspoken rule.

For those who want 4 person because they think turn based with 6 would be too tedious - the solution could pretty easily be able to choose max party size at the start.

And it seems just as many or more want 6 as there are that are fine with 4. So why not at least have the option then.

A lot of people like to make their entire party from scratch anyway, the game might not have that option but a few more characters even if they aren't fully voiced or have hardly any interaction is FINE with me, I just want options for characters and more than 4 characters for my party. (Even DOS II had more than 4 characters with a story) I guess if you can only make your main character from scratch that's better than nothing. And adding more characters with only dialog and not necessarily putting them into the cut scenes is again fine by me. I wonder if unfortunately they might have gone so far with a lot of the cut scene stuff that it's painted them into a corner and thus they don't WANT to add any more characters because that means voicing a sh**load of more stuff and animations, where as in an older game it would have been easier as the voicing wasn't as much and adding the text dialog wouldn't have been very difficult. Even in Divinity II though my gf & I greatly preferred to use a mod that allowed 6 character party and also scaling monsters up a bit. I actually enjoy the combat, so more of it is just fine by me and actually a good thing! Combat didn't feel repetitive to me in in DOS II or grindy which was a very good thing. Baldurs Gate I & II had a ton of different party members you could pick up which would be fantastic to have in BGIII even if not all of them were voiced etc entirely.

Can you get by with a 4 person party? Seems just as many people think so as do that six is what it SHOULD be. And sure, obviously if they make the game for 4 it will be doable, but I don't WANT to just get by with 4. I long for the flavor and combinations possible with 6. And not just there are 6 total characters here you go, deal. Like, there SHOULD be MORE as there was in BG I & II.

And I don't give a h*ll how long a game takes, I never want a rushed game and would always prefer the creator take just as much time as they need/want to so that's a silly argument I think, that it will take longer.

Summons won't be like they were in DOS II, they will be weaker and much more temporary rather than summoning 4 things literally every fight which was exactly what I did in DOS II because the summons were just that good and you could bring them in every fight so why not. D&D is not going to be summon city like that so again I see that as a weak argument. And again, making the option to choose at the start solves the issue of people who want a smaller party, just like how they had lone wolf mode to pare it down even further if people wanted super streamlined combat. But again, lets not forget the flip side of that in that some people will enjoy the combat and larger fights with more characters taking longer will be just fine with some people, like me, and many others. I can understand the abandoning of real time with pause for the turn based for the way they are doing the game and the environments, camera etc everything like that but to limit the party to 4 characters and there not be any other options, well that's just not going to be cool. And if there aren't more characters to choose from to add to your party as well, again that just seems super limited and again not really in the BG vein since both games, especially the 2nd had a ton of extra characters to choose from that you could add to your party.

And again one more time, just because you CAN get by with a 4 person party you can make the same argument for even smaller parties too until you are only playing the main character and your other party members if any are just uncontrollable NPCs. But would that game be BG? Not really. Would a 4 member party game be BG? Not really. Would a game that doesn't have a plethora of party members to choose from like the previous ones be BG? Not really. But would a game with a 6 character party and lots of different characters to choose from be BG? Well yes it would! Ding ding ding, we have a winner.

Posted By: vometia Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 01:05 AM
Guys, you know where the RTwP/TB discussion is. Please take it there. Further off-topic comments are likely to be removed.
Posted By: Alodar Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 02:08 AM
Originally Posted by Aeridyne

And again one more time, just because you CAN get by with a 4 person party you can make the same argument for even smaller parties too until you are only playing the main character and your other party members if any are just uncontrollable NPCs. But would that game be BG? Not really. Would a 4 member party game be BG? Not really. Would a game that doesn't have a plethora of party members to choose from like the previous ones be BG? Not really. But would a game with a 6 character party and lots of different characters to choose from be BG? Well yes it would! Ding ding ding, we have a winner.




What made Baldur's Gate Baldur's Gate was strong characters and compelling story using D&D rules set in the Forgotten Realms.
It wasn't the number of companions or that it ran on Windows 98 or the combat style any more than it was incredibly minimal character customization, or that it used pixelated sprites as character models.
Latching on to these superficial aspects of a 20 year old game and insisting they are central to the Baldur's Gate experience is an exercise in futility.

Larian will be balancing combat for a certain size party in Baldur's Gate 3.
They have chosen 4.
That number isn't going to change based on peoples feelings of nostalgia for an irrelevant aspect of the previous 20 year old installment in the Baldur's Gate Series.


Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 03:29 AM
Originally Posted by Alodar
Larian will be balancing combat for a certain size party in Baldur's Gate 3.
They have chosen 4.
That number isn't going to change based on peoples feelings of nostalgia for an irrelevant aspect of the previous 20 year old installment in the Baldur's Gate Series.

May be irrelevant for you, and that's totally fine. But you don't get to decide what does or doesn't matter to the rest of us. For me, a party size of six IS very much a core characteristic of the original BG games and a very important part of what those games were about. Is it something magical about the number six? No. Rather, it is that the BG games were about going on an adventure with your party. The party aspect of the game was central. Even Swen and Adam Smith said exactly this in their recent interview. And for me, that centrality of the party and all the awesome intra-party interactions you got, or even just having five companions who you took along with you on your adventure and who became like a family to you during that adventure was key to my enjoyment of those games. When than number is then reduced from five to three, that is HUGE reduction in my enjoyment of the party-based experience. And while six is not some magical number, it is very much an optimal number, the proverbial Goldilocks number for party-size for me: not too big and not too small. Four, otoh, is definitely way too small a number.

So bottom, line, this isn't an issue of concern for you. It is an issue of concern for me, and a HUGE one at that. And seems like some others agree as well. So when I write any reviews of BG3 in the future, I absolutely will knock the game for the party size reduction because it is very much a legitimate area for criticism.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 07:11 AM
That sucks they'll balance the game for 4 parties companion.
Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 looks +- well balanced (in général) and you can play with the companion numbers you like, from 0 to 5.

Of course the difficulty increase if your party is smaller, and that's what gives a taste for replayability. In other crpg they usually have to cheat and create "Lone Wolf" skills because everything need to be over balanced... every new game is the same, with the exact same difficulty everywhere.
Posted By: Stabbey Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 08:14 PM
Larian has said it'll be 4 because it will make combat smoother and take less time. I understand that point, it's not a bad point, but I feel like it should be five, because a balanced party typically has four roles to fill: Melee fighter, Healer, Lock and Trap remover, Offensive Caster.

Original Sin was classless, and characters could mix and match roles fairly easily, but D&D's system is class-based, and there doesn't seem to be much room for party flexibility with those roles filled, and multi-classing isn't a solution, as it makes you worse at multiple roles at once.
Posted By: TheAscendent Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 09:32 PM
I like the smaller party dynamic as it encourages you to make tough choices early on an gives you an incentive to replay with different characters and different party combinations.
Posted By: TheAscendent Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 09:34 PM
I wonder if the ones we don't pick return as enemies, later on, becoming Mind Flayers or having found an alternative cure on their own they come back looking for revenge against us the PC for 'abandoning' them.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/08/20 09:49 PM
Originally Posted by TheAscendent
I like the smaller party dynamic as it encourages you to make tough choices early on an gives you an incentive to replay with different characters and different party combinations.

How does party-size incentivize replaying the game? It is the number of companion choices you have in the game that can incentivize replaying the game, i.e., if you have a lot of companions available in the game where those companions are good substitutes for one another, such as was the case in the original BG games, then you can replay the game with different party makeups. So # of available companions helps replay (regardless of party-size). Party-size has no bearing on replay-value of a game.
Posted By: Alodar Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 08:22 AM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by Alodar
Larian will be balancing combat for a certain size party in Baldur's Gate 3.
They have chosen 4.
That number isn't going to change based on peoples feelings of nostalgia for an irrelevant aspect of the previous 20 year old installment in the Baldur's Gate Series.

May be irrelevant for you, and that's totally fine. But you don't get to decide what does or doesn't matter to the rest of us. For me, a party size of six IS very much a core characteristic of the original BG games and a very important part of what those games were about. Is it something magical about the number six? No. Rather, it is that the BG games were about going on an adventure with your party. The party aspect of the game was central. Even Swen and Adam Smith said exactly this in their recent interview. And for me, that centrality of the party and all the awesome intra-party interactions you got, or even just having five companions who you took along with you on your adventure and who became like a family to you during that adventure was key to my enjoyment of those games. When than number is then reduced from five to three, that is HUGE reduction in my enjoyment of the party-based experience. And while six is not some magical number, it is very much an optimal number, the proverbial Goldilocks number for party-size for me: not too big and not too small. Four, otoh, is definitely way too small a number.

So bottom, line, this isn't an issue of concern for you. It is an issue of concern for me, and a HUGE one at that. And seems like some others agree as well. So when I write any reviews of BG3 in the future, I absolutely will knock the game for the party size reduction because it is very much a legitimate area for criticism.




To be blunt -- nobody cares about your review of the game.
Your demographic - obsessed with a 20 year old installment in a franchise - is on no-one's radar.
Larian doesn't care what the obsessed with 20 year old installment in a franchise group thinks.
No studio making triple AAA games does.

Gaming has passed you by.



The opinion of the obsessed with 20 year old installment in a franchise group on Turn Based Combat is completely and utterly irrelevant.
This is a Turn Based game.

The opinion of the obsessed with 20 year old installment in a franchise group on party size is completely and utterly irrelevant.
This game will have a player and 3 companions.

Doesn't matter how many times you post about it, complain about it or stamp your feet about it or how critical it is to your world view. These things are not going to change.



Larian will iterate their game and make changes based on it's performance in Early Access of their paying customers.
They make their choices based on in game data and feedback of their customers and ultimately what they think makes for good game-play for a modern Triple AAA game.


The opinion of the obsessed with a 20 year old installment in a franchise group is irrelevant to the future direction of this franchise, unless of course you happen to agree with the majority of folks playing Early Access.


[/blunt]
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 10:20 AM
Originally Posted by Alodar

The opinion of the obsessed with 20 year old installment in a franchise group on party size is completely and utterly irrelevant.
This game will have a player and 3 companions.

While not exactly cRPGs the current popular turn-based games did use more then 4 units for their combat encounters. XCOM1&2 have 6 units, popular long war mods expand this roster, Phoenix Point supports at least 8 units as well.

At the same time, it also comes down to intended complexity of encounters as well as interesting decisionmaking available within those characters. I felt 6 man limit in FiraXCOM1 was too low, but I didn't feel that with XCOM2, where redesign of classes made them more interesting to use. Also there are stellar turn-based games with less then 6 units. Into the Breach is rather excellent, though small scale, and it has 3 units.

But the biggest mistake I make here, is that I look at it as a single player game, while BG3 is coop. So it's not really a party of 4, but slots for 4 coop buddies, which in this context is plenty. Playing through D:OS1 with only two characters under my control felt like plenty as focus is not on deep, tactical thinking and coordination. That's also a "mistake" many of previous posters make as well - thinking of BG3 in context of single-player RPG. Larian RPG just isn't the same genre as BG1&2, Kingmaker and PoEs.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 01:38 PM
Originally Posted by Alodar
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by Alodar
Larian will be balancing combat for a certain size party in Baldur's Gate 3.
They have chosen 4.
That number isn't going to change based on peoples feelings of nostalgia for an irrelevant aspect of the previous 20 year old installment in the Baldur's Gate Series.

May be irrelevant for you, and that's totally fine. But you don't get to decide what does or doesn't matter to the rest of us. For me, a party size of six IS very much a core characteristic of the original BG games and a very important part of what those games were about. Is it something magical about the number six? No. Rather, it is that the BG games were about going on an adventure with your party. The party aspect of the game was central. Even Swen and Adam Smith said exactly this in their recent interview. And for me, that centrality of the party and all the awesome intra-party interactions you got, or even just having five companions who you took along with you on your adventure and who became like a family to you during that adventure was key to my enjoyment of those games. When than number is then reduced from five to three, that is HUGE reduction in my enjoyment of the party-based experience. And while six is not some magical number, it is very much an optimal number, the proverbial Goldilocks number for party-size for me: not too big and not too small. Four, otoh, is definitely way too small a number.

So bottom, line, this isn't an issue of concern for you. It is an issue of concern for me, and a HUGE one at that. And seems like some others agree as well. So when I write any reviews of BG3 in the future, I absolutely will knock the game for the party size reduction because it is very much a legitimate area for criticism.




To be blunt -- nobody cares about your review of the game.
Your demographic - obsessed with a 20 year old installment in a franchise - is on no-one's radar.
Larian doesn't care what the obsessed with 20 year old installment in a franchise group thinks.
No studio making triple AAA games does.

Gaming has passed you by.



The opinion of the obsessed with 20 year old installment in a franchise group on Turn Based Combat is completely and utterly irrelevant.
This is a Turn Based game.

The opinion of the obsessed with 20 year old installment in a franchise group on party size is completely and utterly irrelevant.
This game will have a player and 3 companions.

Doesn't matter how many times you post about it, complain about it or stamp your feet about it or how critical it is to your world view. These things are not going to change.



Larian will iterate their game and make changes based on it's performance in Early Access of their paying customers.
They make their choices based on in game data and feedback of their customers and ultimately what they think makes for good game-play for a modern Triple AAA game.


The opinion of the obsessed with a 20 year old installment in a franchise group is irrelevant to the future direction of this franchise, unless of course you happen to agree with the majority of folks playing Early Access.


[/blunt]

To be blunt, you need to go back to school kid.
Posted By: The Composer Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 01:44 PM
Behave, guys.
Posted By: Minstrel Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 05:48 PM
This discussion started from a negative perspective with the suggestion that Larian are restricting the number of characters because of constraints. For example:

Quote
I think its 4 because of the amount of background, options, dialogue, pathways to play that they are bringing to the table & it would literally be to expensive to go to 6 man party - either that or we will be waiting another 2 years for the finished game.


I don't believe this is accurate, Larian will have developed dialogue for all companion variants as they don't know what the player will select.

From what I understand (from Swen in 'panel from hell') the limitation of 4 characters is all about building a deeper player to companion relationship. This makes sense to me as with other games I've played where there is a plethora of companions I struggle to find any sort of meaningful connection which detracts from the immersive nature of the game. Obviously there could be other factors like game mechanics but that's speculative.

I would prefer Larian restricts the number of companions (so there would only ever be 3 companions in one play through). I always struggle with which companions to choose! However I appreciate it makes sense to provide more options that can work better with the player class choices/style/preference.

One option is the player selects the 3 companions in the game at character creation and only those will be available in that particular play through.

One key benefit of early access is for Larian to respond to the players views and opinions, if there is a strong argument for more companions I'm sure it will come out of early access.

My suggestion is hold off with preconceptions and give it a go in early access, perhaps you will be pleasantly surprised and the reason for 4 players will become apparent.
Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 05:59 PM
Originally Posted by Tarorn
I think its 4 because of the amount of background, options, dialogue, pathways to play that they are bringing to the table & it would literally be to expensive to go to 6 man party - either that or we will be waiting another 2 years for the finished game.
Im an old school gamer too but I quite like a smaller party to manage - not that 6 is bad - 4 gets the balanced party fighter/cleric/thief/mage.

I do think Larian studios listen though so who knows what might happen by the time the game is in its final state - but for me 4 is enough to enjoy.


This is it. I think they want to build on the origin story style of PCs that they had in D:OS2 which leads to a very detailed approach to party members. Which is why I'm worried that there wont be more than like 6 or 7 viable party members that you can recruit. As you say, introducing more characters would increase the workload and the game would be released later. Or it could be a philosophy descision, I cant really speculate.

But I will say this, the reason why Minsc, Edwin, Viconia, or any other highly memorable character from the originals are so iconic isnt the volumes of algorithms of pathways for their personal journey.
Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 06:13 PM
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler
The more I read the comments in the forum the more I get the impression that Larian is basically just going to put D&D skins on a different game so it will look like D&D, but it won't really play or feel like D&D. I guess it's a good thing I can still play BG & BG2.


I look forward to this game and I will play the EA. But so far this gives me zero nostalgia hits. I dont feel like the game is Baldurs Gate, I feel like the game is D:OS2.

And this might sound wierd but D:OS1 (non-enhanced) does NOT feel like D:OS2. I love D:OS1 but I cant stand the enhanced edition. To pinpoint what they "enhanced" that ruined it for me is hard and I would probably start contradicting myself if I tried. It basically is a non-descript sensation that makes you feel a certain way. What D:OS1 feels like to me are the truly oldschool games of Spiderweb, the Exile games. Which is wierd because those games doesnt seem similar at all except theyre both fantasy RPGs.

But what I wanted to point out here is that having zero nostalgia in a game that rides on the tsunami wave of the original games is a mistake.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 06:40 PM
Originally Posted by Torque
But what I wanted to point out here is that having zero nostalgia in a game that rides on the tsunami wave of the original games is a mistake.

That would be mistake only if Larian we’re trying to ride in the tsunami wave of the nostalgia. I think it is clear, that unlike PoEs which tried to appeal to people’s memory of IE games, BG3 is not interested in that. It’s their RPG set after events of BG3 around the city of BG. Presumably even if it won’t appeal to many original BG fans, it will find its own audience.
Posted By: qhristoff Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 07:06 PM
For all of its failures, the RTwP combat in Pillars of Eternity 2 was incredible. The 5 person party allowed for deep customization while still requiring you to be strategic with whom you chose to take on certain missions. Melee felt useful, ranged wasn't a crutch, magic was fun and interactive. It was the rest of the game that sucked, which is a pity - and also makes Josh Sawyer's comments about RTwP in his post-mortem surprising; by and large, the combat is regarded as the best part of the game by pretty much everyone who is a fan of the franchise.

I would like up to a 5 man party in BG3, which also allows you to add a "quest companion" as a 6th so that you can take someone along who has a quest for you but isn't on your way or part of the main narrative. That way you don't have to juggle party members mid stride and can go off on side adventures with new people all the time while still growing your core party.

I also like the BG style of having a plethora of potential companions all over the world with different stories and different agendas that you get to pick and choose from. Choosing to leave someone behind is a big incentive for replayability.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/08/20 11:00 PM
Originally Posted by Torque
But I will say this, the reason why Minsc, Edwin, Viconia, or any other highly memorable character from the originals are so iconic isnt the volumes of algorithms of pathways for their personal journey.

An excellent observation with which I agree completely.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 03:45 AM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Torque
But what I wanted to point out here is that having zero nostalgia in a game that rides on the tsunami wave of the original games is a mistake.

That would be mistake only if Larian we’re trying to ride in the tsunami wave of the nostalgia. I think it is clear, that unlike PoEs which tried to appeal to people’s memory of IE games, BG3 is not interested in that. It’s their RPG set after events of BG3 around the city of BG. Presumably even if it won’t appeal to many original BG fans, it will find its own audience.


Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Torque
But what I wanted to point out here is that having zero nostalgia in a game that rides on the tsunami wave of the original games is a mistake.

That would be mistake only if Larian we’re trying to ride in the tsunami wave of the nostalgia. I think it is clear, that unlike PoEs which tried to appeal to people’s memory of IE games, BG3 is not interested in that. It’s their RPG set after events of BG3 around the city of BG. Presumably even if it won’t appeal to many original BG fans, it will find its own audience.


I think we already discussed it in another thread, but I do no think the customers that are old-BGgames-fans of the first bg games are the main target of the game.

What I meant is that the target audience of the videogame is not "old-BG-games-fans-only" as in "we are not doing anything reminiscent to the original games and it was never intended to be". I think they are making a game for a broader audience and do not rely on nostalgia nor appeal to players of the games of old only; as the screenshots, trailers, etc show for múltiple reasons (design, mechanics, colour palette, etc).

Maybe the fans of the old games are not the game target audience anymore. I mean, they are using D&D5e Assets, they are advertising modules of WOTC together (Descent into Avernus, etc), they are doing interviews together with WOTC CEOs, working with D&D5e creators, using the ruleset and the setting...

But I dont´remember them referencing the old BG games in any interview unless asked first (In one interview even Sven Vincke and Mike Merle didn´t remember the canon ending of the baalspawn crises), they didn´t make videos of "Sven Vinke playing the old bg games", didnt´hire any of the original game screenwriters, musicians,... didn´t use images of the old games and characters to advertise the game (Owlcat, for example, included two of the iconic characters of Pathfinder in the videogames, Amiri and Seelah) nor include any of the characters of the first trilogies (Not official of the entire Wotc franchise like Elminster or volo),... didn´t take people from Black isle into the game-cons,... and they do none of the things that the PR department use to do to rally the old game fans.
I mean, the story of the baalspawn is already finished, it´s a different studio, do not share plot or common characters that we know of, It´s a turn-based game, 20 years and 3 different editions of D&D passed and they are using D&D5e game mechanics, lore and Artwork; and a setting 200 years after the baalspawn crisis, so... Do you really think they are worried about "deep and satisfying links to the original story arc that might justify the sequal tag in terms of story-telling and game-play terms"?


Not that I have anything against that, I happen to like D&D5e, TB, the forgotten realms... etc so I´m happy with plenty of what they show us so far (Even tho I found wierd some design choices) and, even I loved the old games I do not particularly care that much about the game to be similar to the old (and amazing) BG trilogy, not even in the party size. The story of those games already give us a great ending.


I think they just want to make a Larian game of D&D5e, their own game.
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 06:17 AM
I see quite a few people wrongly conflating nostalgia for surface elements of BG/BG2 with the FEEL for how the game plays. The play in a full party of six FEELS very different than running only the player character and maybe one companion. A full party of six provides many tactical options that are simply impossible for only one or two toons to try let alone pull off. While a party of four is better than only one or two, six is even better than four because the more people in the "fireteam" or "squad" the more redundancy the party can have with important skills and abilities. Effective use of small unit tactics is much much more important and actually doable with a party of six instead of only one or two. Granted, four is better than one or two, but not as good as six.

I also see a significant reliance upon people, and Larian apparently, using a false dilemma. Not every member of the party has to be a fully scripted NPC with lots of lines and interactions with the each other and the player character. In addition to the four party members with the full background and script the party can also use two red shirt henchmen with generic lines so they can interact with the rest of the party. Showing respect for the legacy of what came before in D&D games like the Icewind Dale and Balgur's Gate series isn't a bad thing. Does Larian really have to dumb down combat in an RPG by reducing party size and switching from RTwP to TB to appeal to the gamers of today? Sure looks like it.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 06:24 AM
If respecting the legacy would give sucess and good sales, The fallout games of Bethesda, the last Final fantasy games or even the GTA games should´ve been failures.

People do not need nor want to play the same games again, unless it´s FIFA or a game that precisely wants to ride on nostalgia.
Posted By: Bercon Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 07:24 AM
Another viewpoint into this is strengths and weaknesses of your party. If you have 6 members, you will have the right tool for everything in the game. However, if you have only 4 members, there might be some areas where you are lacking, you have weaknesses. This gives you an opportunity to be creative.

No healing? Well perhaps you need to stock lots of health potions, magical items or take another route and avoid taking any damage.

Nobody to search & disarm traps? Perhaps you need to make your tank capable of taking the hits then.

This means more replayability too, because if your first playthrough didn't have any arcane casters, perhaps quests and approaches you take are completely different than if you had one?
Posted By: Wumba Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 09:32 AM
Ever since the first announcement of BG3, I have been thinking 5 would be the dream number for a party.

I know 5e gives people enough freedom to get by in combat/story mechanics with 4, but 5 feels better to me -- and not just for the combat system or mechanics (although yes, for different combinations there) but for story flavor specifically. Different companion combinations for personalities and banter shenanigans and interjections. It's just more interesting, and I don't think 5 is too many to be a tight-knit group going through a crazy experience in a big grand adventure together. The story itself, a shared tadpoling vs PC is the special hero going through something unique to them, in a way lends itself to having an extra companion; they wouldn't need some outlandish/random reason to join up with the main character.

Different combinations of companions adds to replayability for a lot of people, but the more limited the spots... I'm not sure how to explain it as well as others in this thread have except to say if it's too limited, it feels tedious to replay for that reason. For example, I have zero desire to go through DOS2 again to experience the two companions I left out of my party; it doesn't feel like it would be different enough. As in, I might play through DOS2 again for another reason, but the companions aren't one of the factors. In BG, the option to mix-and-match companions has always been one of (and sometimes the only) factor in a replay, for me.

And I know, I do get it, this isn't the BG of old and obviously a lot goes into these decisions. I know it could be only 4 for a number of reasons. It could be that 5e is aimed at 4 people so 4 people it is. It could be that we can collect a certain number of companions at our camp and switch them out so it's hardly punishing. It could be that there will be less banter and interjections overall and so we're simply not missing out on anything there. Or it's a limitation related to multiplayer. Or it could be engine troubles. Or a combination of those reasons, or none of them.

Will we be playing BG3 with a party of 4? Probably. Can we do that just fine, no complaints on getting through a fight or story area? Sure. But clearly the opinions vary on the overall vibe and replayability that decision actually gives the game and I do think it extends beyond nostalgia. If I was just nostalgic, I would say six members, but I do agree that would be too many here. 4 seems to be the norm these days, but for me, 4 always feels limiting in terms of story, and a little boring for combat.
Posted By: Iamblitzwing Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 12:59 PM
Six character party seems quite oldschool. I would love to see it, but I also like the closeness and tightness of a four man party.
Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 02:01 PM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Torque
But what I wanted to point out here is that having zero nostalgia in a game that rides on the tsunami wave of the original games is a mistake.

That would be mistake only if Larian we’re trying to ride in the tsunami wave of the nostalgia. I think it is clear, that unlike PoEs which tried to appeal to people’s memory of IE games, BG3 is not interested in that. It’s their RPG set after events of BG3 around the city of BG. Presumably even if it won’t appeal to many original BG fans, it will find its own audience.


I do not understand how someone who pays attention to this can think that Larian *isnt* trying to ride the "THE NEXT BALDURS GATE GAME!" hypetrain. But you're right about one thing and thats that the core audience for a game in 2020 wont be players who were adolescents in 2000. And I'm fine with that, I was just hoping I would see a glimmer of the good old days, you know?
Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 02:11 PM
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler
I see quite a few people wrongly conflating nostalgia for surface elements of BG/BG2 with the FEEL for how the game plays. The play in a full party of six FEELS very different than running only the player character and maybe one companion. A full party of six provides many tactical options that are simply impossible for only one or two toons to try let alone pull off. While a party of four is better than only one or two, six is even better than four because the more people in the "fireteam" or "squad" the more redundancy the party can have with important skills and abilities. Effective use of small unit tactics is much much more important and actually doable with a party of six instead of only one or two. Granted, four is better than one or two, but not as good as six.

I also see a significant reliance upon people, and Larian apparently, using a false dilemma. Not every member of the party has to be a fully scripted NPC with lots of lines and interactions with the each other and the player character. In addition to the four party members with the full background and script the party can also use two red shirt henchmen with generic lines so they can interact with the rest of the party. Showing respect for the legacy of what came before in D&D games like the Icewind Dale and Balgur's Gate series isn't a bad thing. Does Larian really have to dumb down combat in an RPG by reducing party size and switching from RTwP to TB to appeal to the gamers of today? Sure looks like it.


One thing about the reduced party size is that it makes balancing easier because you'll have less variables. A problem with PF:K is that its quite hard in the beginning but gets increasingly easier once you have some levels because you as a player has more room to optimize and 4 chess pieces instead 6 reduce variance.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 02:25 PM
Originally Posted by Torque
I do not understand how someone who pays attention to this can think that Larian *isnt* trying to ride the "THE NEXT BALDURS GATE GAME!" hypetrain.

I don't understand how someone who pays attention to what Larian has revealed so far, can think that they do. Did you get a single nostalgia hit so far? I didn't and BG2 is my very very very dearest game ever. I am pretty sure that for many potential player "next game from Larian" carries more weight then "the next Baldur's Gate game". I was convinced from the very beginning that Larian will be better of serving their existing fanbase first, rather then trying to create something that nostalgia fueled BG1&2 fans will accept.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 04:07 PM
Originally Posted by Bercon
Another viewpoint into this is strengths and weaknesses of your party. If you have 6 members, you will have the right tool for everything in the game. However, if you have only 4 members, there might be some areas where you are lacking, you have weaknesses. This gives you an opportunity to be creative.

No healing? Well perhaps you need to stock lots of health potions, magical items or take another route and avoid taking any damage.

Nobody to search & disarm traps? Perhaps you need to make your tank capable of taking the hits then.

This means more replayability too, because if your first playthrough didn't have any arcane casters, perhaps quests and approaches you take are completely different than if you had one?


I don't call this replayability... I call this a boring and bad gamedesign that reduce my possibilities to force replayability.

Assuming you're playing a custom character, if I'm not wrong :
3 companions out of 10 is 120 possibilities.
5 companions out of 10 is 252 possibilities.
Both numbers are important if you want to talk about replayability and choices.

Of course that numbers don't care about alignement and character's personnality/compatibility.

I hope they'll give an option for a team of 6 and I hope we'll have many "followers" that aren't animals or creatures...
Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 05:24 PM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Torque
I do not understand how someone who pays attention to this can think that Larian *isnt* trying to ride the "THE NEXT BALDURS GATE GAME!" hypetrain.

I don't understand how someone who pays attention to what Larian has revealed so far, can think that they do. Did you get a single nostalgia hit so far? I didn't and BG2 is my very very very dearest game ever. I am pretty sure that for many potential player "next game from Larian" carries more weight then "the next Baldur's Gate game". I was convinced from the very beginning that Larian will be better of serving their existing fanbase first, rather then trying to create something that nostalgia fueled BG1&2 fans will accept.


My initial point was that I dont feel any nostalgia and I thought that was a mistake. Which is wierd since if this game was D:OS3 and not BG3 it wouldnt get near as much attention. Sure, people would be looking forward "the next Larian game" but the fact that it has the name of the most iconic roleplaying game in computer history is what elevates it to something else. I mean its pretty much the main grief people have with the game: "Its not Baldurs gate, its D:OS3". You're genuinely confusing me here because I think its so blatantly obvious that they wanted to hitch a ride on the Baldurs Gate hypetrain that when you disagree youre basically telling me that water isnt wet.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 06:29 PM
And we already told you that they are not using nostalgia as PR or advertise ties with previous games nowhere besides the name. They are not using characters, mechanics, isometric, story, timeline, character and world design or even the same edition of the previous games.

Witch means they want to make their own game.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 06:41 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
And we already told you that they are not using nostalgia as PR or advertise ties with previous games nowhere besides the name. They are not using characters, mechanics, isometric, story, timeline, character and world design or even the same edition of the previous games.

Witch means they want to make their own game.

Sure. But they *are* using the BG name. And that counts for A LOT. I mean, exactly because of everything you just listed ("They are not using characters, mechanics, isometric, story, timeline, character and world design or even the same edition of the previous games"), why does it need the BG name? The game has nothing (or at best extremely little) in common with the original BG games, so why call it BG3? It would've been absolutely appropriate to make it a new IP game. But both WotC and Larian decided it should be called BG3. Clearly the BG name matters, and that can only be because they both expect the BG name, just by itself, will draw in a bunch of potential buyers who would otherwise likely bypass the game. So, not so much nostalgia as name recognition.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 06:52 PM
I may or may not agree with the notion that the game is worthy to be called BG, but I have to say that Wotc are the ones that allow them to use the name, so they have all the rights to use it, so I´m not going to be swamped in another discussion about if they´re worthy of the name, if they should call it the game this or that because it´s pointless. It changes nothing.


What I´m going to say is that they could make the game they want to. They do not have to be restrained by the expectations of some people would have simply because of the name, and they never confirmed nor feed nor promised to keep those expectations. They always said that they are going to work closely with WotC, that whey want to make a D&D game, that they want to make a party based game, that they are willing to listen to the player´s feedback , but they never said that they want to make yet another "spiritual successor" of the game.
I say, let them do their own vision of the game. They own it.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 07:59 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
I may or may not agree with the notion that the game is worthy to be called BG, but I have to say that Wotc are the ones that allow them to use the name, so they have all the rights to use it, so I´m not going to be swamped in another discussion about if they´re worthy of the name, if they should call it the game this or that because it´s pointless. It changes nothing.

Yes for sure. I have no desire to reopen that can of worms either. My point has nothing to do with the question of whether larian should/has the right to/is justified in using the BG name. That is a completely moot issue as you say, and I agree.

My point simply is that one cannot say WotC/Larian's decision to use that name is a neutral or arbitrary decision. It is indisputably a *calculated* decision meant to help sell the game to a wider audience than they would get if they did not use that name. That's all I'm saying.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 08:06 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
My point simply is that one cannot say WotC/Larian's decision to use that name is a neutral or arbitrary decision. It is indisputably a *calculated* decision meant to help sell the game to a wider audience than they would get if they did not use that name. That's all I'm saying.

Or perhaps WotC/Larian and some long time fans simply disagree what BG3 could and should look like. How game makers perceive an IP and how players perceive it might be fundamentally different.

EDIT. Most of us are here because we are fans of BG1/2. And yet we can't agree on what were important parts of BGs and what changes are acceptable/desirable. Larian's approach might not be made according to my and your vision of BG3, but it doesn't mean that they are not making BG3. They pitched BG3 and they were granted the IP. Sven somewhere did say that if he didn't intend to make BG3 he wouldn't call it BG3.

We might argue regarding what BG3 should be, but that doesn't mean that Larian can't do the same. And as they were granted the right to do it, their take on what BG is has more sway then ours.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 08:18 PM
I personnaly find it a little bit disrespectfull to those that loved and waited this game for years.
There's absolutely nothing that looks like Baldur's Gate actually except minor, insignificant things...

They could change many little things so the experience looks less like a Larian Game but more like a Baldur's Gate game.
UI, visual effects, story telling, number of companions, exploration,... These are only few exemple that could be reworked and meet lots of everyone's expectations.
,
I hope that's why the name was chosen because the name is everything for many people interrested in Baldur's Gate 3.
Posted By: Emrikol Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 08:21 PM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by kanisatha
My point simply is that one cannot say WotC/Larian's decision to use that name is a neutral or arbitrary decision. It is indisputably a *calculated* decision meant to help sell the game to a wider audience than they would get if they did not use that name. That's all I'm saying.

Or perhaps WotC/Larian and some long time fans simply disagree what BG3 could and should look like. How game makers perceive an IP and how players perceive it might be fundamentally different.

Both of these can be true (and I believe they are).

As to the main topic, though (aren't there numerous old threads on the same subject?), I am fine with four.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 08:23 PM
I´ve see many definitions of the feels that the previous games bg2 games have. For many it the game had a dark tone, for many it was a fun game with jokes about the three stooges and space miniature hamsters and gnomes that talk too much, an incredible D&D game, a compelling story, a great tactical game, etc etc.

Maybe for the devs of Larian the spirit of the BG games are a party-based game with developed companions and based in the current D&D installment of the tabletop; for other people it´s a game about a baalspawn played in real time with a party of six ; maybe for other is a D&D 2ed game,...
Everybody could have their vision, they´re like noses. Everybody has one (besides Voldemort)

But the ones that ultimately could make his vision of a new game come true is Larian. They said they will listen to the feedback but we must be aware that they´re going to make his own game in the end, and it´s going to be a BG3. His BG3.



Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 09:28 PM
Party base with develloped companions in the curent D&D installement of the tabletop is probably ok to everyone I guess...

What you describe is only a vision one can have for its game... Not the feelings players will experience.
A party base game with 3 companions out of 5 possibilities (+ horrible creature, owlbear cub or spiders) seems a little bit contradictoire to me, especially when one is a vampire, one is named Shadowheart and one is a Gythianki.

I guess if many more were planned they would have say it.
Posted By: DrunkPunk Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 09:36 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus

I guess if many more were planned they would have say it.


There will be more, the 5 we've seen are just what early access is launching with.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 09:37 PM
Larian's silence on additional companions is indeed worrisome. Everyone keeps saying there will surely be more, but I'm not sure. And since the vampire spawn and Sharite should be automatic no's for a good-aligned party, party composition is absolutely set for a good-aligned party with no possibility for any choice.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 10:00 PM
They said the have plans for more in the last pannel from hell.
Posted By: The Composer Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 10:04 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Larian's silence on additional companions is indeed worrisome. Everyone keeps saying there will surely be more, but I'm not sure. And since the vampire spawn and Sharite should be automatic no's for a good-aligned party, party composition is absolutely set for a good-aligned party with no possibility for any choice.


More companions will be added throughout Early Access, so what everyone is saying is correct.
Posted By: DrunkPunk Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/08/20 10:14 PM
I believe they said each writer is in charge of the writing for a companion, with one writer having two. So that's 13 companions, I think, if I have my writer count correct. There will also be the ability to recruit mercenaries.
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 02:40 AM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
If respecting the legacy would give sucess and good sales, The fallout games of Bethesda, the last Final fantasy games or even the GTA games should´ve been failures.

People do not need nor want to play the same games again, unless it´s FIFA or a game that precisely wants to ride on nostalgia.


That's ridiculous literalism and misrepresentation to fabricate a lame false dilemma. Developers can show respect for the legacy of previous games WITHOUT copying a previous games. The Fallout games prove that quite well.
Showing respect for the legacy of a game =/= Copying a previous game
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 03:04 AM
Originally Posted by Bercon
Another viewpoint into this is strengths and weaknesses of your party. If you have 6 members, you will have the right tool for everything in the game. However, if you have only 4 members, there might be some areas where you are lacking, you have weaknesses. This gives you an opportunity to be creative.

No healing? Well perhaps you need to stock lots of health potions, magical items or take another route and avoid taking any damage.

Nobody to search & disarm traps? Perhaps you need to make your tank capable of taking the hits then.

This means more replayability too, because if your first playthrough didn't have any arcane casters, perhaps quests and approaches you take are completely different than if you had one?


That's all well and good until your party takes its first casualty. Then things get a lot worse real fast when the party takes multiple casualties. There were more than a few times that despite massive buffing from both spells and potions that four or five of my characters were down or out of the fight in IWD, BG, and BG2 and the only reason the party survived was because I had six instead of only four. No amount of creativity can completely make up for losing the only character with critical skills and/or abilities. The biggest advantage of having a party of six is being creative with the redundancies in your party so no single loss, and likely not even a loss of two, cripples the party. Losing the pure Cleric or pure Magic User doesn't hurt nearly as bad when the party has a dual class M/C for backup. Losing the pure tank doesn't hurt nearly as bad when there is another Fighter or Paladin or Ranger for backup. Robbing us of a perfectly valid tactical option is just spiteful.

If the traps are that wimpy what is the point of even bothering with traps? Making rogues irrelevant is just spiteful. One of my two favorite characters to run is a rogue as a scout/sniper/pathfinder. So if one of my two favorite character types is unnecessary why should I bother with the game?

Actually, a party of six provides for MORE replayability because a larger party makes more party configurations possible. So that is MORE opportunities to see what works well enough to succeed by trying different party configurations. Then people can try it with five instead of six if they think they've exhausted all of the six party configurations they have an interest in trying.
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 03:10 AM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
And we already told you that they are not using nostalgia as PR or advertise ties with previous games nowhere besides the name. They are not using characters, mechanics, isometric, story, timeline, character and world design or even the same edition of the previous games.

Witch means they want to make their own game.


They WHY the frakk bother with calling it Baldur's Gate 3? If they are essentially making a very different game and then borrowing characters and locations from the Baldur's Gate games so they repackage a different game as BG3 then just be honest about and call it something else. So far this looks like a classic bait and switch con game.
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 03:10 AM
Originally Posted by The Composer
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Larian's silence on additional companions is indeed worrisome. Everyone keeps saying there will surely be more, but I'm not sure. And since the vampire spawn and Sharite should be automatic no's for a good-aligned party, party composition is absolutely set for a good-aligned party with no possibility for any choice.


More companions will be added throughout Early Access, so what everyone is saying is correct.


Having more companions to add to a party of four is still only a party of four instead of six.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 07:39 AM
3 companions out of 13 is still way less possibilities than 5 out of 13...
I'm not sure it's very complicated to balance the game and create difficulty levels for every companions number.



Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 07:54 AM
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler
Originally Posted by _Vic_
And we already told you that they are not using nostalgia as PR or advertise ties with previous games nowhere besides the name. They are not using characters, mechanics, isometric, story, timeline, character and world design or even the same edition of the previous games.

Witch means they want to make their own game.


They WHY the frakk bother with calling it Baldur's Gate 3? If they are essentially making a very different game and then borrowing characters and locations from the Baldur's Gate games so they repackage a different game as BG3 then just be honest about and call it something else. So far this looks like a classic bait and switch con game.

Only for people that actually do not read any of what larian has been said the past 9 months: that they are making his own game and the story and mechanics would be his version of a D&D game.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 08:58 AM
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler

They WHY the frakk bother with calling it Baldur's Gate 3? If they are essentially making a very different game and then borrowing characters and locations from the Baldur's Gate games so they repackage a different game as BG3 then just be honest about and call it something else. So far this looks like a classic bait and switch con game.

It what MAKES BG3. What makes Fallout3? Is fallout3, 4, 76 a fallout game?

There was no bait and switch. It was announced that Larian makes BG3 and from that point on if one were in touch with current RPG landscape then one would know what to expect. And gameplay revealed was 100% what I expected plus some stuff that actually peaked my curiosity. Game was never advertised as anything else. Disappointment with what BG3 is purely personal, and while you are free do dislike it, just like I somewhat do, there is no deception nor scam going here. Larian is doing Baldur’s Gate3 just as Bethesda did Fallout3 or Obsidian did Neverwinter Nights2. Larian makes a Larian RPG, Bethesda did a Bethesda RPG, Obsidian did Obsidian RPG.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 02:22 PM
Originally Posted by The Composer
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Larian's silence on additional companions is indeed worrisome. Everyone keeps saying there will surely be more, but I'm not sure. And since the vampire spawn and Sharite should be automatic no's for a good-aligned party, party composition is absolutely set for a good-aligned party with no possibility for any choice.


More companions will be added throughout Early Access, so what everyone is saying is correct.

Okay, thanks.
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
I believe they said each writer is in charge of the writing for a companion, with one writer having two. So that's 13 companions, I think, if I have my writer count correct. There will also be the ability to recruit mercenaries.

If this is correct, that would be good news. With thirteen, I can imagine there will be sufficient options for a good-aligned party to be created including with balance across needed party roles.

But hiring mercenaries is a hard 'no.'
Posted By: Sordak Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 02:27 PM
honestly im kind of afraid there wont be enaugh companions
i dont mind having less than bG1 or 2, but i dont intend to play as any of the companions so id rather have more with a fixed personaltiy rather than 80 different paths each

Right now most of them seem pretty unlikeable
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 02:35 PM
Originally Posted by Sordak
honestly im kind of afraid there wont be enaugh companions
i dont mind having less than bG1 or 2, but i dont intend to play as any of the companions so id rather have more with a fixed personaltiy rather than 80 different paths each

Right now most of them seem pretty unlikeable

On this I agree with you. I also generally cannot stand the companions revealed thus far, even the non-evil ones. Maybe the githyanki will be tolerable, but still, I would never ever even think of playing as one of the origin characters. And if cutting back on all the reactivity of the origin companions is the price that has to be paid for more companions, I would also be very okay with that. But I think the problem there is that Larian's default expectation is that players SHOULD play as one of their origin characters and NOT as a custom character. So they want to make their origin characters super-attractive to play as, so that players will feel like they're missing out on a lot by not playing as one of the origin characters.
Posted By: Bercon Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 03:20 PM
I don't expect there to be 13 companions to be honest and if you set your expectations that high, prepare to be disappointed. I'd expect 7-8 at best. Sure I'd love to have more, but quality over quantity. Especially with 4 member party, 9 companions would mean at least 3 playthrough to see all of them.

Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler

That's all well and good until your party takes its first casualty. Then things get a lot worse real fast when the party takes multiple casualties.

If the traps are that wimpy what is the point of even bothering with traps? Making rogues irrelevant is just spiteful. One of my two favorite characters to run is a rogue as a scout/sniper/pathfinder. So if one of my two favorite character types is unnecessary why should I bother with the game?


DnD 5E already has mechanics to reduce lethality in combat with death saves and mechanics. It's also a video game, so if things go bad, that's what quick save & load are for. Plus 5E characters are usually a bit more versatile than 2E, so not having a thief, mage or cleric doesn't cripple you entirely.

Why the hyperbole? Just because stepping into a trap with a tank doesn't instantly annihilate them, doesn't mean they need to be wimpy.


High number of different party configuration or permutations give you an illusion of diversity. Is a game with 120 configurations really more diverse than 252? Are you truly going to play this game through more than 120 times? Do these configuration actually play differently, or is there only couple true differences between them? No Man's Sky has infinite number of planets, does that mean infinite replayability? After 20-30, does the number really matter?

In BG1&2 you pretty much always ran at least 1 cleric, 1 mage, 1 thief, 1 tank. That makes the games play very samey. You have a thief to pick locks and traps 100% of the time. You have cleric to give you the same basic buffs 100% of the time. You have mage to haste you near 100% of the time. You have 1 frontline guy aggroing the enemies 100% of the time. You don't make any real compromises and have no weaknesses.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 03:36 PM
I think 6-8 possible companions is a solid number, spread out across various classes. I'd even say that for me it's about the sweet spot I don't think I've ever played a game that gives you as many as 13 party members and while I'm sure that can be good, to me it almost sounds kind of overwhelming. And as far as the number of characters with you in your party, I'd say that while 5-6 would be my ideal purely because it allows for more interaction with your party members and it ensures you'll be able to mix and match your party without too much worry, if the game is balanced for only 4 characters then I'm sure it'll work out fine. The studio knows what it's doing.
Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 04:16 PM
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
I believe they said each writer is in charge of the writing for a companion, with one writer having two. So that's 13 companions, I think, if I have my writer count correct. There will also be the ability to recruit mercenaries.


Do you remember where you saw this? If they create 13 companions it will be alright.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 04:27 PM
Originally Posted by Torque
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
I believe they said each writer is in charge of the writing for a companion, with one writer having two. So that's 13 companions, I think, if I have my writer count correct. There will also be the ability to recruit mercenaries.


Do you remember where you saw this? If they create 13 companions it will be alright.

Yeah 13 would be nice, but as some others have said, I also doubt we will get that many. And anything less would mean, once you account for alignment and class distributions and personal taste, you will be lucky to find even three companions that you both personally like as well as who work for your party's needs.
Posted By: DrunkPunk Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/08/20 04:29 PM
Originally Posted by Torque
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
I believe they said each writer is in charge of the writing for a companion, with one writer having two. So that's 13 companions, I think, if I have my writer count correct. There will also be the ability to recruit mercenaries.


Do you remember where you saw this? If they create 13 companions it will be alright.


I can't remember off the top of my head, I believe it was one of the discussions and not one of the gameplay streams. I'll see if I can find it when I get home tonight.
Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 05:26 AM
On the idea of not needing to appeal to any nostalgia, yet using the BG name... That just doesn't add up, like others said why even call it BG III if it's going to be D&D world DOS:III. If it was going to be just 4 person party AGAIN... I'd actually rather it have been DOS:III and wait to make a BG game like it should be, with six character party and a large number of companions to choose from. You can have your opinion and I can have mine.

And I agree with the idea it doesn't need to follow the same story, in fact a new story is welcome. SOME ties would be cool though. The number of characters and party size is the biggest potential neg to me though as Kanisatha noted as well.

That "blunt" guy takes the "reality" point of view to the extreme. Basically saying whatever sells to the most people is exactly what they are going to and should do and every other game maker can and should do so deal with it. Also ignoring that just because younger people might be more vocal and have more time (including time to play the early access and give feedback) vs the older crowd doesn't automatically translate to who all will actually or would buy the game. And basically if you played the originals that nobody cares about you, you're too old and gaming has passed you by. None of your ideas or feelings nor your cash are relevant anymore. OK. But yeah. Cool guy and cool story. Awesome even. Yeah not really...

If we get 13 that would be very welcome to me. I don't need Suikoden number of characters to choose from but I did like that there was lots of choices in the first two games.

Someone noted in DOS II they didn't feel compelled to add the other 2 characters to their party for another play through just to see their stories and I didn't really either. What WAS fun though was using a mod to have all of them in my party at once so I could do all of their stories and scale up the monsters smile Which wasn't always very easy and would have been cool to have that built into the game from the start as an option. My first play through was with 3 friends so we didn't really get any of the additional characters stories. The 2nd play through was with just my gf and I so we could have all the other characters and hear their stories with the mods. It was a bit wonky and buggy though and would have been a lot nicer if it was just built into the game. We actually encountered a glitch we couldn't resolve and never did finish that 2nd play through.

Multiple other arguments of how additional party members somehow makes the party more predictable, which makes no sense... Like, it just doesn't. Saying that like the one example of having six characters means most people are going to run fighter/cleric/rogue/wizard and that's predictable. YES, it IS. BUT - you get TWO MORE SLOTS. I can't eyeroll hard enough how frustrated this makes me. The painful choice of necessity required however smaller a party is made does not = fun or making things more dynamic. It literally limits what you can do and the combinations possible and thus in reality forces you, unless the battles are cheese which I doubt they are, to have a combat strong party. With no cleric, you'll never even see the strongest priest spells in the game, same with wizard. So I want both. And I NEED a fighter, its hardly an option really. So now I have MAYBE one slot to kind of play around with assuming you were limited to 4. Rogue is the obvious choice here and sure, maybe I can pick a lock with my wizard by giving them the right background, but I don't WANT to pick locks with my wizard. I want to pick locks with my rogue. And then maybe take a bard along or a druid, etc. I guess I hear the words of those who think 4 person party is better but why would 6 person party be a bad thing at the very least as an option!? And I guess I'm also similarly surprised at the number of people who are totally OK with there being a tiny handful of potential companions. Like people that are ok with just 5. What if you hate 3 of them!? LOL. Shadowheart seems like a cool character (I absolutely hate Shar, she's almost as bad as entropy itself) but if given the choice I'd take the opposite priest of Selune any day along with war or healing domain. Anyway, I guess the whole less is more argument just doesn't add up to me. Why not more with the option for less.

Maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised with the option for six but I feel like its unlikely unless enough people throw their respective two cents in the wishing well. I do feel though that it's entirely likely that there are an unexpected large number of people out there that bought the 1st and 2nd BG that might not even know that BG III exists or is a thing yet, but would or will buy it, eventually. Just because there are very vocal people sometimes creating an echo chamber of feedback that doesn't necessarily mean that everyone who would potentially buy the game is in that chamber voicing their opinion. I'm one of those people that almost never is.

And just to add it one more time. Yes the game can and should be different and that's good, and I'm ok with the tactical and not real time, but pretty much every other game of the iconic isometric D&D games was 6 character party. Please Larian, don't change that.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 06:12 AM
The best solution about companions is to have 5-6 origin character and many more usual companions, that are just companions as in the old BG. Only one quest and they come with you for any reasons.

I don't really care that the companions quest line is 4-5 steps if the quest is interresting and take a few hours to play (BG2).

Origin characters are designed to be the main character (that's the concept). Every companions don't need that. Quality companions doesn't mean origin characters...
Posted By: Nyanko Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 08:44 AM
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler
Originally Posted by The Composer
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Larian's silence on additional companions is indeed worrisome. Everyone keeps saying there will surely be more, but I'm not sure. And since the vampire spawn and Sharite should be automatic no's for a good-aligned party, party composition is absolutely set for a good-aligned party with no possibility for any choice.


More companions will be added throughout Early Access, so what everyone is saying is correct.


Having more companions to add to a party of four is still only a party of four instead of six.


Fair enough, but a party of six is less tactical than 4. In most games I play with a party of 6, I tend to find the sweet spot with my characters and I just go through the whole campaign only with one group. Having only 4 characters forces me into thinking ahead of combat encounters to decide whether I go more with a melee focused group, a ranged one or a magic centric build. It enforces decision making rather than getting the player lazy about choices. And I prefer that personally.

Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 10:37 AM
Originally Posted by Aeridyne

Someone noted in DOS II they didn't feel compelled to add the other 2 characters to their party for another play through just to see their stories and I didn't really either. What WAS fun though was using a mod to have all of them in my party at once so I could do all of their stories and scale up the monsters smile Which wasn't always very easy and would have been cool to have that built into the game from the start as an option.


I think we can all safely bet that there will be a mod that remove the 4-man party restriction. Whats more of an issue is the scaling of combat, as you point out. Ideally there would be scaling within the game that factors in party size and party level (just like in pnp). If you create a mod that allow you to have 6 members but dont scale the encounters it will suck and its alot to ask from a modder to re-balance every encounters in the game.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 10:54 AM
Originally Posted by Nyanko
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler
Originally Posted by The Composer
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Larian's silence on additional companions is indeed worrisome. Everyone keeps saying there will surely be more, but I'm not sure. And since the vampire spawn and Sharite should be automatic no's for a good-aligned party, party composition is absolutely set for a good-aligned party with no possibility for any choice.


More companions will be added throughout Early Access, so what everyone is saying is correct.


Having more companions to add to a party of four is still only a party of four instead of six.


Fair enough, but a party of six is less tactical than 4. In most games I play with a party of 6, I tend to find the sweet spot with my characters and I just go through the whole campaign only with one group. Having only 4 characters forces me into thinking ahead of combat encounters to decide whether I go more with a melee focused group, a ranged one or a magic centric build. It enforces decision making rather than getting the player lazy about choices. And I prefer that personally.



Let's say Xcom is less tactical than DoS ?
Less choices is not more tactical... You can imagine way more things in a team of 6 and have more options.
Restrein team number to force "specialized team build" is not equal to "tactical" to me. It's just another constraint you can create yourself.



Originally Posted by Torque
Originally Posted by Aeridyne

Someone noted in DOS II they didn't feel compelled to add the other 2 characters to their party for another play through just to see their stories and I didn't really either. What WAS fun though was using a mod to have all of them in my party at once so I could do all of their stories and scale up the monsters smile Which wasn't always very easy and would have been cool to have that built into the game from the start as an option.


I think we can all safely bet that there will be a mod that remove the 4-man party restriction. Whats more of an issue is the scaling of combat, as you point out. Ideally there would be scaling within the game that factors in party size and party level (just like in pnp). If you create a mod that allow you to have 6 members but dont scale the encounters it will suck and its alot to ask from a modder to re-balance every encounters in the game.


A mod is not always the best to balance the game as you said.
It would be cool we have the option on the base game so we can feel the true BG3 experience.
Posted By: Nyanko Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 12:15 PM
It's even more so the case in xcom because as it doesn't have so much variety in terms of classes and styles of gameplay compared to a fantasy setting, it is just a matter of adjusting encounters according to the number of characters. Adding more characters to the team doesn't change anything at all. And so if you can do fine with more, you can do fine with less.

In DOS or BG3 it's totally different because the classes are so hugely diverse that it makes a world of difference whether you bring mages, rogues, clerics or fighters into the fray, each role being so specific. Then again, by reducing the number of slots available, you force the player into making tactical decisions he or she would have never made by always bringing the same group and always cheesing the same tactics refined after each encounter.

And yeah I agree. Modding the game into a 6 slots team will be a disaster in term of balance. The best way to make the game boring as f.
Posted By: Vlad the Impaler Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 01:20 PM
Originally Posted by Bercon
I don't expect there to be 13 companions to be honest and if you set your expectations that high, prepare to be disappointed. I'd expect 7-8 at best. Sure I'd love to have more, but quality over quantity. Especially with 4 member party, 9 companions would mean at least 3 playthrough to see all of them.

Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler

That's all well and good until your party takes its first casualty. Then things get a lot worse real fast when the party takes multiple casualties.

If the traps are that wimpy what is the point of even bothering with traps? Making rogues irrelevant is just spiteful. One of my two favorite characters to run is a rogue as a scout/sniper/pathfinder. So if one of my two favorite character types is unnecessary why should I bother with the game?


DnD 5E already has mechanics to reduce lethality in combat with death saves and mechanics. It's also a video game, so if things go bad, that's what quick save & load are for. Plus 5E characters are usually a bit more versatile than 2E, so not having a thief, mage or cleric doesn't cripple you entirely.

Why the hyperbole? Just because stepping into a trap with a tank doesn't instantly annihilate them, doesn't mean they need to be wimpy.


High number of different party configuration or permutations give you an illusion of diversity. Is a game with 120 configurations really more diverse than 252? Are you truly going to play this game through more than 120 times? Do these configuration actually play differently, or is there only couple true differences between them? No Man's Sky has infinite number of planets, does that mean infinite replayability? After 20-30, does the number really matter?

In BG1&2 you pretty much always ran at least 1 cleric, 1 mage, 1 thief, 1 tank. That makes the games play very samey. You have a thief to pick locks and traps 100% of the time. You have cleric to give you the same basic buffs 100% of the time. You have mage to haste you near 100% of the time. You have 1 frontline guy aggroing the enemies 100% of the time. You don't make any real compromises and have no weaknesses.


What hyperole? If traps are weak enough that a fighter can literally walk through an entire dungeon setting them all off without the fighter dying and without the traps being a threat to the party then why bother with traps at all? That's why I grew to hate coop play with other players doing D&D online. After more than a dozen attempts I gave up on the game because exactly the same thing happened every time - people had zero interest in teamwork or even a hint of roleplaying. Every time the other players just threw caution to the wind and zergged through setting off ever trap and killing everything in sight and opening every treasure chest before I could cautiously advance more than few rooms.

You do understand that a good rogue is useful for more than only finding and disarming traps, right? They can also be very effective in a scout/sniper/pathfinder role to do recon for the party to help develop a sound tactical plan, they can do flanking and backstabbing, they can snipe mages to interrupt spell casting. A mage that can never get off a spell is not a threat. A mage that dies from a backstab is not a threat. If rogues are not necessary then why bother with traps? Another way to effectively use a rogue after it has done enough Recon is to get aggro on the enemy can then draw them back to the party waiting in over-watch to ambush the attackers with enfilading fire before the fighters at point engage in melee. If rogues are not necessary for scouting and recon and flanking and backstabbing then it seems as though a lot of tactical nuance is not necessary, and that seems a lot like mind numbing hack and slash.

The party of four you describe has no redundancy to make up for losses/casualties during encounters. One fighter? I always had two because after getting above L6 or L7 losing at least one fighter to a spell becomes the norm. Losing both fighters isn't the norm, but even that happens some time. Then the pure cleric is the tank. One cleric? I always have a dual class C/M because losing the cleric to a spell gets common at the middle levels so the party needs the dual class character to maybe keep the party alive. One mage? Again, I always have that dual class C/M as backup for when the mage gets taken out of the fight.

My goal in every dungeon/encounter is to always use proper recon and tactics to survive without ever having to do a reload. If I have to reload then I've failed. I hate having to rely upon the save and reload copout. I prefer to have save & reload as the rare exception rather than the norm.

20-30? How about at least three or four or five? And you have the gall to accuse me of hyperbole. If its easy enough and tactics lite enough for four I don't have much confidence that replaying will be likely. Granted, a party of four makes that more likely than a "party" of one or two. That's why I never finished Morrowind, and never replayed Neverwinter Nights or Daggerdale - no party so not much use for tactics.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 01:30 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Quality companions doesn't mean origin characters...

Amen. smile
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 03:27 PM
Originally Posted by Bercon

In BG1&2 you pretty much always ran at least 1 cleric, 1 mage, 1 thief, 1 tank. That makes the games play very samey. You have a thief to pick locks and traps 100% of the time. You have cleric to give you the same basic buffs 100% of the time. You have mage to haste you near 100% of the time. You have 1 frontline guy aggroing the enemies 100% of the time. You don't make any real compromises and have no weaknesses.

So far I didn't like RPGs with only 4 companions. That said if the map and quest design is good enough... What if paths will be varied enough to not require "trap and picklock" guy? What if we won't HAVE to have priest for buffs and 100% protection from things that are bound to kill us otherwise? If those things that you usually HAVE to have will become optional boons opening new paths... that could be interesting.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 04:11 PM
In D&D 5e roles overlap a lot. A ranger can be a capable healer, a fighter or a cleric could disable traps, druids are excellent scouts, bards could... well could be anything from healing to diplomatic duties to thievery, etc.
Posted By: colonelbuendia Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/08/20 04:19 PM
I'm hoping this game is not just a great successor to the BG series, but the best D&D game ever made and THE gold standard 5e game. I just don't know very many DM's that cap their party size at 4, and I would be hesitant to play at their table if they forbid it. DnD is a shared storytelling experience. The interactions between characters and the richness of their stories is a major element of that tabletop experience - and was a quality of BG that helped evoke that feeling of tabletop DnD's depth and breadth within the game.

I want to play with a bunch of different character/class combos. Page 83 of the DMG says that the ideal party size is 3-5 players. Most of the official adventure modules are written for 4-5 or 4-6 players.

Why restrict us to the low end of the standard WotC DnD party size? The only answer seems to be additional effort (and time) on Larian's side, both to create the characters/dialogue and to update the Divinity framework to allow it. I hope this is revisited during Early Access and beyond, because it feels like a Larian-imposed restriction not found in the sources they're building on top of.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 12:22 AM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
In D&D 5e roles overlap a lot. A ranger can be a capable healer, a fighter or a cleric could disable traps, druids are excellent scouts, bards could... well could be anything from healing to diplomatic duties to thievery, etc.

Sure, but they don't do those things very well. That's the problem you get when everyone can do (a little of) everything. Nobody does anything particularly well.
Posted By: Gt27mustang Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 02:14 AM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
]
Sure, but they don't do those things very well. That's the problem you get when everyone can do (a little of) everything. Nobody does anything particularly well.



That's what AD&D 2nd edition was for: nobody fought like a fighter, nobody healed like a cleric, nobody stole like a thief, or made things explode like a wizard, or...spoke to plants...like a druid, or whatever it is druids do. The roles were way more defined back then.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 01:49 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by _Vic_
In D&D 5e roles overlap a lot. A ranger can be a capable healer, a fighter or a cleric could disable traps, druids are excellent scouts, bards could... well could be anything from healing to diplomatic duties to thievery, etc.

Sure, but they don't do those things very well. That's the problem you get when everyone can do (a little of) everything. Nobody does anything particularly well.


Nah, that was in previous versions of D&D. Bards could master any skill, only some rogues could rival them. They also could fulfill any role you can think of if you build them accordingly.

Rangers have healing spirit, something that even clerics do not have, so they are fantastic healers. They only lack mass healing. Even celestial warlocks, bards or some sorcerers have buff and healing capabilities.

Druids have pass without a trace and could turn into animals ( even animals with swimming, flying or burrowing capacities later on), and also have several spells at their disposal to detect enemies. They are one of the top scout class of the game by far. Wizards and Bards excel at it using their familiar to scout ahead.
There are several hybrid subclasses that allow fighters or rogues to have access to wizard spells, so they could provide arcane support.

Any character with enough dexterity could use thieving tools to open locks/disable traps, etc. And since there are weapons that use dex for attack and damage, there are fighters, monks or rangers that could be excellent trapspringers.

Paladins, bards or sorcerers could be great faces for the group, due to his high carisma, but any character could learn the dialogue skills.
etc etc






Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 02:24 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by _Vic_
In D&D 5e roles overlap a lot. A ranger can be a capable healer, a fighter or a cleric could disable traps, druids are excellent scouts, bards could... well could be anything from healing to diplomatic duties to thievery, etc.

Sure, but they don't do those things very well. That's the problem you get when everyone can do (a little of) everything. Nobody does anything particularly well.


Nah, that was in previous versions of D&D. Bards could master any skill, only some rogues could rival them. They also could fulfill any role you can think of if you build them accordingly.

Rangers have healing spirit, something that even clerics do not have, so they are fantastic healers. They only lack mass healing. Even celestial warlocks, bards or some sorcerers have buff and healing capabilities.

Druids have pass without a trace and could turn into animals ( even animals with swimming, flying or burrowing capacities later on), and also have several spells at their disposal to detect enemies. They are one of the top scout class of the game by far. Wizards and Bards excel at it using their familiar to scout ahead.
There are several hybrid subclasses that allow fighters or rogues to have access to wizard spells, so they could provide arcane support.

Any character with enough dexterity could use thieving tools to open locks/disable traps, etc. And since there are weapons that use dex for attack and damage, there are fighters, monks or rangers that could be excellent trapspringers.

Paladins, bards or sorcerers could be great faces for the group, due to his high carisma, but any character could learn the dialogue skills.
etc etc

I don't buy this. But for the sake of argument, if you are right, then what exactly is the point of having classes? Effectively, every class is considerably the same as at least one other class and maybe more, and all the classes significantly overlap each other. So in truth you have a classless system with fake classes to give the illusion of a class-based system. Nope. Don't buy it at all. A cornerstone of D&D has always been its distinctive class-based system, and although 5e has weakened the distinctiveness of classes it has not erased their distinctiveness the way you describe it.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 02:51 PM
There are differences between classes and the roles that you can have in a party. In 5e the different classes are very flexible, many classes could fulfill different roles. So usually it´s not needed to have 6 different characters to take care of 6 different roles in the party.
Already gave you lots of examples, if you don´t buy it and think I do not describe it accurately I hope you have any facts that back your claims because yours sounds a baseless and prejudiced opinion from my viewpoint.
Posted By: Emrikol Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 04:52 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
There are differences between classes and the roles that you can have in a party. In 5e the different classes are very flexible, many classes could fulfill different roles. So usually it´s not needed to have 6 different characters to take care of 6 different roles in the party.

I don't know 5e well enough at all, so I can't comment oh who is right. But I can say I do hope classes mean more. It's ironic, though, since I used to bemoan the rigidity of 'classes' for so long. But maybe because there seems to have been so little of the old school class system recently I am actually looking forward to more of it (e.g no other class can match a rogue in lockpicking).
Posted By: deathidge Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 05:15 PM
While some roles can be done, in different ways, by multiple classes, every class is still unique due to the class-specific skills and abilities that are, IMO, enough to keep classes unique. That's at the class level, not the subclass level. Subclass has less uniqueness, IMO, in some cases. Fighter for example, battle master has way more flexibility and uniqueness than the champion due to all the combat abilities they get. No other class can mimic a battle master enough to be considered an alternative for that 'role'.
Posted By: Gt27mustang Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/08/20 10:06 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by _Vic_
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by _Vic_
In D&D 5e roles overlap a lot. A ranger can be a capable healer, a fighter or a cleric could disable traps, druids are excellent scouts, bards could... well could be anything from healing to diplomatic duties to thievery, etc.

Sure, but they don't do those things very well. That's the problem you get when everyone can do (a little of) everything. Nobody does anything particularly well.


Nah, that was in previous versions of D&D. Bards could master any skill, only some rogues could rival them. They also could fulfill any role you can think of if you build them accordingly.

Rangers have healing spirit, something that even clerics do not have, so they are fantastic healers. They only lack mass healing. Even celestial warlocks, bards or some sorcerers have buff and healing capabilities.

Druids have pass without a trace and could turn into animals ( even animals with swimming, flying or burrowing capacities later on), and also have several spells at their disposal to detect enemies. They are one of the top scout class of the game by far. Wizards and Bards excel at it using their familiar to scout ahead.
There are several hybrid subclasses that allow fighters or rogues to have access to wizard spells, so they could provide arcane support.

Any character with enough dexterity could use thieving tools to open locks/disable traps, etc. And since there are weapons that use dex for attack and damage, there are fighters, monks or rangers that could be excellent trapspringers.

Paladins, bards or sorcerers could be great faces for the group, due to his high carisma, but any character could learn the dialogue skills.
etc etc

I don't buy this. But for the sake of argument, if you are right, then what exactly is the point of having classes? Effectively, every class is considerably the same as at least one other class and maybe more, and all the classes significantly overlap each other. So in truth you have a classless system with fake classes to give the illusion of a class-based system. Nope. Don't buy it at all. A cornerstone of D&D has always been its distinctive class-based system, and although 5e has weakened the distinctiveness of classes it has not erased their distinctiveness the way you describe it.


Yeah I don't buy this either. All the things you listed _Vic_ are unique abilities to each classes, it doesn't make them better.

A bard was a master of skill, yes, and it was ITS strength. Fullfilling any role ADEQUATELY if build accordingly? Yeah I can see that. Being better in said role than the class it emulates? Nah man, just nah.

The ranger's healing spirit, the druid's pass without trace, the thief and fighter's sub classes that allow them to use wizard spells, the paladin's healing abilities...all of these things you mention are abilities that DEFINE a class, allows it to have a certain flavor and be able to cover more ground inside a party and to be able to help where needed. However they will never equal the class whose primary abilities it copies. I wouldn't trust a ranger to support the healing needs of a party like a cleric could. No class comes close to a fighter's close quarter capabilities and sheer number of feats. The wizard remains the absolute master of magic even if bards can cast some arcane spells ans even if every class can pick an odd lock, the thief is still the master backstabber and has access to feats that makes a thief, well, a real thief.

I still think AD&D 2nd was where the classes were the most defined. However, the classes are still really well defined in 5E.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/08/20 12:51 AM
As I said before, I´ve never said that the classes are less unique, I said that a class could fulfill a lot of roles, so it doesn´t matter if you do not have a cleric, a warrior of a rogue in the party, for example, because there are many other classes that could do their job, even more than in previous editions. Also never said I liked it that way, I was exposing bare facts.

You do not seem to understand that the skills, saves and attack rolls in 5e are calculated by 2 things: Proficiency and stat. And ANY CHARACTER has the SAME proficiency number at the same level with their trained skills. And the background, some subclasses and feats allow you to train in skills outside your class.

A wizard or cleric trained in survival or animal handling(ie. outlander or folk hero background) with wisdom enough would be as skilled as a ranger living in the wild. They will have EXACTLY the same skill number: With 14 wis your wizard or cleric will have +4 at level 1 +5 at level 5 +6 at level 9 . etc Same as your Ranger. Possibly even better than your ranger in the long run because clerics usually have more wisdom.

That means that a fighter or a rogue trained in medicine with the same wisdom stat would treat wounds, stabilize your fallen party member and identify diseases as well as your cleric or your druid.

A wizard with high investigation could be better than some rogues at detecting traps because they possibly have higher int and could be trained in thieve´s tools as any other character with the criminal background, for example.

Any wizard or artificer are potentially better than any cleric or druid at knowledge nature and religion because the main stat is INT, not WIS (and those classes usually have much more) so they could take care of the tasks that require it without a divine spellcaster.

A barbarian trained in arcana (just pick the sage background) with 14 int would have the same number in arcana as a sorcerer with the same int of the same level.

Your sorcerer, warlock or paladin could be much more intimidating or charming than your fighter or your barbarian or rogue because those classes usually do not need CHA.
Your barbarian, wizard or rogue could be as skilled as your bard at performing because there are several backgrounds and feats that allow you to be trained in performance or a particular instrument of your choice.

The only difference could be rogues and bards that could get specialization in some skills so they could be better than average at several skills.

Anyone could take a look at how character creation and classes/subclasses work at 5e and take a look for himself. That´s the jam now in 5e.
Heck, even now with the Tasha´s new book you´re not even restrained by the races` and you could pick your own: ¿You want a half-orc with +2 dex and the stealthy feature? you can.

That also means that a sorcerer has the same hit% that a Barbarian or a fighter if they have the same weapon and the same Dex/STR. There are even lots of subclasses that allows bards, warlocks or clerics to have armor proficiences and the same attacks/turn as a barbarian, paladin or a ranger, so you may forfeit your frontine warrior and use one bard, warlock or cleric build instead without even multiclassing.


If you do not have a rogue or a ranger, your druid or your wizard could be your scout and use the thieve´s tools. If you do not have a cleric or a druid your ranger or your celestial warlock or sorcerer could do the healing, your rogue or barbarian could be your diplomat, your bard your melee fighter, your cleric could be as good at tame animals, using survival skills and spot creatures(still retaining their healer role), etc etc.
You may tell me that a warrior would do warrior stuff, a healer would heal or a rogue would do trickery stuff at 100% efficiency, but there are many other classes that could do that at a 90% efficiency. So yeah, you win, there´s a difference, there are classes better suited for a particular role, but that does not mean that plenty other builds that could cover for it if you do not have/want that class in your party in 5e.


Played lots of games without a cleric, a rogue or a warrior and find that the party could do fine without them because other classes could cover it without much of a fuss.When you are playing you do not notice the difference that much, unless for very situational roles ( i.e. A cleric in a tomb full of undead would be useful to turn them, a bard, ranger, druid or a Firbolg if you want to talk with some plants or forest inhabitants, etc)
Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/08/20 03:01 AM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
You may tell me that a warrior would do warrior stuff, a healer would heal or a rogue would do trickery stuff at 100% efficiency, but there are many other classes that could do that at a 90% efficiency. So yeah, you win, there´s a difference, there are classes better suited for a particular role, but that does not mean that plenty other builds that could cover for it if you do not have/want that class in your party in 5e.


Um, gotta disagree with you there. For most of the skill based examples you give, sure, yeah, not gonna debate you on that. 5e leveled out a great deal of the skills, experience and made a lot of stuff flexible or same in that regard. However, you lost me at the "there are many other classes that could do that at 90% efficiency." Nope. Just not true for a great many things.

Ranger never gets access to a wide range of spells the cleric does. Need remove curse? Best of luck to ya. Need a raise dead? Never gonna happen. The ranger literally caps at spell level 5 with a far more limited spell list, compared to a huge spell list for clerics and top out at of course level 9 spells. How does the ranger then fulfill the role of "healer" at 90% efficiency? About one of the only class relations I would agree with that statement remotely is bard, wizard, sorcerer, warlock, but those are all magic focused classes anyway with variations. But can any other non magic class cover the role of a "wizard" at 90% efficiency? Again, it's a no. Not gonna happen. No class that doesn't max out at lvl 9 spells is going to even hold a candle to a class that does. A paladin may be able to heal but again, not like a cleric. A spell sword might be able to cast magic but not like a wizard or sorcerer. Anyway, the point I wanted to make was already made. Skills, yes that's one thing (except I still want a rogue for the specializations for rogue like things.) But saying one class can be adapted to be 90% as good as another class at something I simply see as just not true. Conflating various mostly non class skills & backgrounds with actual class skills and progression which is NOT the same. And I'm not here to argue and you clearly know your stuff regarding the game but I feel that was a pretty generous over exaggeration.

And as far as what works in a table top game, I don't really see that as incredibly relevant because most DMs that aren't shooting for a TPK are going to be nice and adjust for some of the weaknesses in the party where as hard code is unlikely to do that. Don't have the speak with animals? Well I guess you aren't doing that then hmm. Want to get through this door? Oh well, you're going to need a rogue with specialization for this best item in the game...

To me though all of this back and forth about CAN you do this or that with a smaller party is moot though because clearly there are lots or even more people that would love to at the very least have the option of a 6 character party, which has been the standard in basically all of the previous games from Icewind Dale to BG to Neverwinter and some of the games that have come after like Pillars, Kingmaker etc as well. If it ain't broke don't fix it, and certainly don't take away 2 characters and say, well its fine, you can just try to squeeze all that down into 4 characters instead. Ok but, lets make that an option. 6 SHOULD be the STANDARD, not 4. And everybody who is ok with 4 can rationalize it in their own way but I'm just going to keep disagreeing and pointing at the boxes of all the originals, and the fact that they have.... 6. And lastly I'll say it again, personally I'm sick of 4 player max co op games anyway honestly. Which this isn't just any game, it's a D&D game that shares the name with the game that started it all, the original 2D isometric classic. Some things are bound to change but party size being capped at 4 shouldn't be one of them. Swear to goodness if it's capped at 4 it's going to feel like some kind of D&D divinity to me and not actual BG like it should be imo. I guess we need options to make everyone happy as it seems relatively 50/50 or if this thread has any bearing like actually more people would prefer 6 over 4.

Side note: My favorite trilogy of books is the Dragonlance - Tales of the Lance. Wouldn't have been such a great trilogy if they couldn't have ever assembled more than 4 heroes at a time... >.>
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/08/20 05:39 AM
Uh We were talking about a game with a level cap of 10 (at least I was) like Bg3 but yeah, for high-levels a full caster will always be superior to dabblers like rangers as you said, of course. Warlocks, bards or sorcerers could make them work for their money, but ultimately specialists would be better at what they do, if only because they could reach the heavenly 9th spells. You are absolutely correct, nothing to say against.
PD: maybe rangers do not have raise dead or remove curse, but pallys and bards can wink warlocks could cast remove curse too. And to be honest, I´m in love with healing spirit and goodberies, something that clerics lack but I concede a druid would make better use of it than a ranger. Other classes will offer interesting variants that clerics or wizs cannot do, like metamagic or warlock casting.

In regard of spells I concur.

I will add to your statements that a bard (even more lore bard), an artificer or a rogue over level 11 would run in circles around any other character if we measure only skills and tools`competence; in quality and quantity.

First I have to point out yet again that I didn´t mean a class could do the same as the other, I said they could make the same role that other traditional class usually did in previous editions: healer, scout, face, sage, etc. And many of those do not rely on the number and quality of spells you can cast.

In the matter of skills and physical combat all classes are more capable than in previous editions and the difference in competence is not that much. At least in comparison. Many characters could be built to fit the role of frontline fighter, marksman, trap disabler, scout, diplomat, thief, survivalist, know-it-all, etc using classes that were simply not fit in previous editions.(see all the examples above)

Heck, after 5e you have to pick a rogue, artificer or have a cleric and a wiz with a bunch of scrolls of lock if you wanted to deal with traps & locks, now any character could be trained to do it; and some of the best combat and tank builds in 5e use moon druids and warlocks as a base, the most popular without a single level of a traditional warrior class.
Posted By: Gt27mustang Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/08/20 09:55 AM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
As I said before, I´ve never said that the classes are less unique, I said that a class could fulfill a lot of roles, so it doesn´t matter if you do not have a cleric, a warrior of a rogue in the party, for example, because there are many other classes that could do their job, even more than in previous editions. Also never said I liked it that way, I was exposing bare facts.

You do not seem to understand that the skills, saves and attack rolls in 5e are calculated by 2 things: Proficiency and stat.



I do know that proficiency governs a lot of things in 5E. But saying the proficiency bonus and skills make classes equal? Just no. A class is defined by so much more than the proficiency bonus, especially in 5E, where every level or so classes gain a specific ability.

Just so you know, I'm currently DM of the Descent into Avernus campaign and we lost our cleric during chapter 2 (those who play know what) but we still have a warlock and a druid for healing and we are HURTING. We are usually forced to rest after even an average fight. Their healing just cant maintain the party.
Posted By: Annyliese Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/08/20 09:57 AM
Originally Posted by Gt27mustang
Their healing just cant maintain the party.


You really don't outheal damage in 5e, the system doesn't support it very well.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/08/20 01:51 PM
Originally Posted by Gt27mustang
Just so you know, I'm currently DM of the Descent into Avernus campaign and we lost our cleric during chapter 2 (those who play know what) but we still have a warlock and a druid for healing and we are HURTING. We are usually forced to rest after even an average fight. Their healing just cant maintain the party.

This is what I'm finding in the 5e game I'm in as well.
Posted By: Gt27mustang Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/08/20 02:09 PM
Originally Posted by Annyliese
Originally Posted by Gt27mustang
Their healing just cant maintain the party.


You really don't outheal damage in 5e, the system doesn't support it very well.


Do you mean there is more damage done than healing capabilities? If so, I agree.

When we had our cleric, we could easily go 2-3 fights without resting. Resting every so often is kind of a problem in avernus...
Posted By: KillerRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 30/08/20 02:49 AM
Yeah, I have to agree that the 4 player party is not good.

I forgot how many companions BG2 had -- 13? 14? Much of the replay value came from mixing and matching parties. One party for maximum dialogue options, power party . . . can I beat the game with the hopelessly weak party? I'm hoping that Larian has more than one unannounced companion up their sleve.
Posted By: Annyliese Re: Party Size Discussion - 30/08/20 03:12 AM
Originally Posted by KillerRabbit
Yeah, I have to agree that the 4 player party is not good.

I forgot how many companions BG2 had -- 13? 14? Much of the replay value came from mixing and matching parties. One party for maximum dialogue options, power party . . . can I beat the game with the hopelessly weak party? I'm hoping that Larian has more than one unannounced companion up their sleve.


I'll be honest, as someone who has put a ridiculous number of hours into the older games... I really don't like having a full party. Even when I do take a full party, I usually end up with at least one person I dedicate as a spare inventory and buff bot.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 31/08/20 08:49 PM
I think you are
Originally Posted by Gt27mustang
Originally Posted by _Vic_
As I said before, I´ve never said that the classes are less unique, I said that a class could fulfill a lot of roles, so it doesn´t matter if you do not have a cleric, a warrior of a rogue in the party, for example, because there are many other classes that could do their job, even more than in previous editions. Also never said I liked it that way, I was exposing bare facts.

You do not seem to understand that the skills, saves and attack rolls in 5e are calculated by 2 things: Proficiency and stat.



I do know that proficiency governs a lot of things in 5E. But saying the proficiency bonus and skills make classes equal? Just no. A class is defined by so much more than the proficiency bonus, especially in 5E, where every level or so classes gain a specific ability.

Just so you know, I'm currently DM of the Descent into Avernus campaign and we lost our cleric during chapter 2 (those who play know what) but we still have a warlock and a druid for healing and we are HURTING. We are usually forced to rest after even an average fight. Their healing just cant maintain the party.



No offense, but you´re just picking only the party/character choices to back your facts. Try to do it in reverse. Pick the classes you want and give them the skills the party needs.

You can give your druid the criminal background and do not use a rogue, you can train your cleric in perception and survival and your ranger could stay home, you can use a half-elf sorcerer and give him the charlatan background so you do not need a diplomat, your half-elf rogue arcane trickster could be a sage and fullfill all your knowledge needs, your paladin could make a performance to rival your average bard, you can use a gith hexblade warlock and you do not need another melee fighter.

I do not say that´s a perfect, but That´s something you cannot do in previous editions. Just saying.
Posted By: Gt27mustang Re: Party Size Discussion - 31/08/20 09:12 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
You can give your druid the criminal background and do not use a rogue, you can train your cleric in perception and survival and your ranger could stay home, you can use a half-elf sorcerer and give him the charlatan background so you do not need a diplomat, your half-elf rogue arcane trickster could be a sage and fullfill all your knowledge needs, you can use a gith hexblade warlock and you do not need another melee fighter.

I do not say that´s a perfect, but That´s something you cannot do in previous editions. Just saying.


Not being perfect and not being able to do that in previous editions, I agree. But the rest of the exemples you provided are almost all based on skills. Yes 5E has made it so classes can learn almost every skills. But saying, for exemple, a warlock Hexblade will replace a pure fighter, wich can get 4 attacks/round, combat maneuvers, fighting styles etc...you just can't replicate/learn class-specific powers abilities as you can skills

Again, as you said, not perfect. I say far from perfect.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 31/08/20 09:34 PM
LoL? Yeah, I was talking about roles all the time, not classes. Does not matter it´s the 3rd time I said it, it seems (I wonder what D&D class "diplomat" and "sage" is. Must be a homebrew).
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 01/09/20 03:08 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
No offense, but you´re just picking only the party/character choices to back your facts. Try to do it in reverse. Pick the classes you want and give them the skills the party needs.

You can give your druid the criminal background and do not use a rogue, you can train your cleric in perception and survival and your ranger could stay home, you can use a half-elf sorcerer and give him the charlatan background so you do not need a diplomat, your half-elf rogue arcane trickster could be a sage and fullfill all your knowledge needs, your paladin could make a performance to rival your average bard, you can use a gith hexblade warlock and you do not need another melee fighter.

I do not say that´s a perfect, but That´s something you cannot do in previous editions. Just saying.

No, if I want to play a rogue, I should pick the rogue class for it. I should not have to take rogue bits and stick them into my cleric.

I'll say it again: if you can stick bits from any class into any other class (which is what you had in D:OS), then your classes are fake and you have a classless system pretending to be a class-based system.
Posted By: vometia Re: Party Size Discussion - 01/09/20 03:37 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
No, if I want to play a rogue, I should pick the rogue class for it. I should not have to take rogue bits and stick them into my cleric.

I'll say it again: if you can stick bits from any class into any other class (which is what you had in D:OS), then your classes are fake and you have a classless system pretending to be a class-based system.

Argh, no. I loathe rigid and restricted classes. Let me be rubbish by being Jill-of-all-trades-and-master-of-getting-myself-pwned.
Posted By: dragonuff Re: Party Size Discussion - 01/09/20 03:46 PM
I just want to play with more then three friends we currently have to run two squads in DOS2 I would love to have my full D&D party in BG3
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 01/09/20 07:38 PM
Originally Posted by vometia
Originally Posted by kanisatha
No, if I want to play a rogue, I should pick the rogue class for it. I should not have to take rogue bits and stick them into my cleric.

I'll say it again: if you can stick bits from any class into any other class (which is what you had in D:OS), then your classes are fake and you have a classless system pretending to be a class-based system.

Argh, no. I loathe rigid and restricted classes. Let me be rubbish by being Jill-of-all-trades-and-master-of-getting-myself-pwned.

This would be perfectly fine in a solo-play game, but in a party-based game the point of the party is that each member brings something special or unique to the party to justify them being given a spot in the party. Otherwise, why bother with a party? May as well play solo with a PC that can do everything themselves.
Posted By: Emrikol Re: Party Size Discussion - 01/09/20 09:19 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by vometia
Originally Posted by kanisatha
No, if I want to play a rogue, I should pick the rogue class for it. I should not have to take rogue bits and stick them into my cleric.

I'll say it again: if you can stick bits from any class into any other class (which is what you had in D:OS), then your classes are fake and you have a classless system pretending to be a class-based system.

Argh, no. I loathe rigid and restricted classes. Let me be rubbish by being Jill-of-all-trades-and-master-of-getting-myself-pwned.

This would be perfectly fine in a solo-play game, but in a party-based game the point of the party is that each member brings something special or unique to the party to justify them being given a spot in the party. Otherwise, why bother with a party? May as well play solo with a PC that can do everything themselves.

For the most part, I agree. As I have said earlier, beginning in the late 90s, I became kind of anti-class after all the years of class rigidity. Now, after have so much of what I used to wish for (e.g classless systems), I think I am more middle of the road, which means classes that do their thing best, but have the chance to do other class stuff (just not as well).
Posted By: AnonySimon Re: Party Size Discussion - 01/09/20 09:48 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_


You can give your druid the criminal background and do not use a rogue, you can train your cleric in perception and survival and your ranger could stay home, you can use a half-elf sorcerer and give him the charlatan background so you do not need a diplomat, your half-elf rogue arcane trickster could be a sage and fullfill all your knowledge needs, your paladin could make a performance to rival your average bard, you can use a gith hexblade warlock and you do not need another melee fighter.

I do not say that´s a perfect, but That´s something you cannot do in previous editions. Just saying.


So I read this, and all I can think is that you are telling those of us that want 6 person party size that we should just abandon the pregenerated companions (missing out on flavorful dialog and plot), so that we can make a custom 4-person party that doesn't follow the 5e "classic" composition of Warrior/Mage/Priest/Scout, but can still fulfill those roles by shoehorning in proficiencies.

Note, that I do play D&D 5e, and game with a party of 5 other people (6 total). Saying that D&D 5e was built around a party size of 4 to me is just disingenuous. AD&D (the edition that BG 1-2 was based on) was built around a 4-person party (yet the game had a 6-person party). D&D 3.X (the edition that IWD 2 & NWN was based on) was built around a 4-person party (yet those games had a 6-person party and 2-person party respectively). D&D 4th edition was based around a 4-person party. D&D has always been based around a 4 person party. Saying that BG 3 should be limited to a 4-person party because "5e" is just lacking in structural integrity as an argument.

In practice, there are many reasons why many D&D tables have consistently more than 4 players to a party. In my particular case, many of us simply don't like vancian spellcasting, or those that don't hate it are simply sick of playing a spellcaster. So, what did we do instead? We gathered a couple more like-minded players (to make up for the fact that we don't have magic to solve all our problems) and game with a party of 6. It means that we can literally play whatever we want without being expected to accommodate the needs of the party; because otherwise in a 4-person party, before character creation we would have a session that nothing but discussing who was going to play the Warrior/Mage/Priest/Scout.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 01:39 AM
Not really, I absolutely prefer 6 party members and at least 13 companions like the previous installments if possible (or more XD) but realistically I do not think we are going to have it (They already said so, it´s a Coop MP game with 4 players, etc); so I wanted to point out that if we have only 4 party members in the end that would not be the end of the world because 5e is more flexible than previous installments of D&D.
Posted By: Sordak Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 10:33 AM
Rigid classes are cool.
I can only say it more ofthen: classes should be more rigid and more restrictive.
in a perfect world clerics wouldnt be able to attack.
Posted By: Magicalus Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 02:27 PM
I also want the party to have six members.
Not only because, since Larian's game is called "Baldur's Gate 3", I expect that if it cannot be a literal continuation of the previous two parts, it will at least include some solutions that older players will remember.
It is also about choice. It is supposed to be a role-playing game where the emphasis is on the ability to make decisions. You can kiss the goblin's foot, attack him, or do something else. There should also be such a possibility with the party. If someone likes to play as one character, they should be able to do so. If prefers four - no problem! Six characters on a party - take it easy, it is possible.
If it wasn't "Baldur's Gate 3", I wouldn't have such a problem. But this is not just some random RPG, or even a casual game set in the world of DnD. This is "Baldur's Gate" and should still resemble the previous parts in terms of the number of party members and similar details. I don't feel nostalgic looking at the trailer and gameplay. The graphics are not like the first two Baldur's, but I can understand that - different times, different player requirements, etc. But not being able to recruit six members instead of four hurts. It's not Neverwinter Nights, it's Baldur's Gate... right?
Posted By: Warlocke Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 02:34 PM
I don’t see how the specific number of party members was an inextricably intrinsic part of Baldur’s Gate’s identity. That it was a party based rpg, absolutely, but not the 6 character limit.

Would I like a larger party? Sure. But I understand if 4 is easier to balance encounters for, so I can live with it.
Posted By: Sordak Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 03:45 PM
I dont think 6 party members are a direct part of the baldurs gate identity.

I however thin kthat 6 party members are a superior number of Party members to 4. Flat out.

Its a tactical RPG at this point, and its 5e.with 6 party members its ok if 1 or 2 are a martial who doesnt do jack shit.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 04:28 PM
Originally Posted by Emrikol
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by vometia
Originally Posted by kanisatha
No, if I want to play a rogue, I should pick the rogue class for it. I should not have to take rogue bits and stick them into my cleric.

I'll say it again: if you can stick bits from any class into any other class (which is what you had in D:OS), then your classes are fake and you have a classless system pretending to be a class-based system.

Argh, no. I loathe rigid and restricted classes. Let me be rubbish by being Jill-of-all-trades-and-master-of-getting-myself-pwned.

This would be perfectly fine in a solo-play game, but in a party-based game the point of the party is that each member brings something special or unique to the party to justify them being given a spot in the party. Otherwise, why bother with a party? May as well play solo with a PC that can do everything themselves.

For the most part, I agree. As I have said earlier, beginning in the late 90s, I became kind of anti-class after all the years of class rigidity. Now, after have so much of what I used to wish for (e.g classless systems), I think I am more middle of the road, which means classes that do their thing best, but have the chance to do other class stuff (just not as well).

Yeah this is exactly where I am as well.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 04:28 PM
The 6 party members are clearly a part of BG according to me because it leads to many things :

- more character management (during fights, leveling, inventory...)
- more differents party composition
- more interactions/dialogs in the party

More is not a problem if player can choose the number of companions they want to play with. 4 is a problem for all those that want to play BG3 a little bit more like BG1/2 with 6 characters in their party.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 04:36 PM
Originally Posted by Sordak
I dont think 6 party members are a direct part of the baldurs gate identity.

I however thin kthat 6 party members are a superior number of Party members to 4. Flat out.

Its a tactical RPG at this point, and its 5e.with 6 party members its ok if 1 or 2 are a martial who doesnt do jack shit.

This is my biggest reason for wanting six as well. I want those extra few slots for one or two characters that don't really contribute to the "power" of my party but who I want in the party for roleplaying reasons. With four, this is simply out of the question, and you are forced to be completely technical, even a min-maxer, in how you set up your party.

Take for example my complete aversion to having a character like Astarion in my BG3 party. I want to play good-aligned, and a vampire spawn is just a huge 'no' for me. However, if party-size were six, I might have my preferred party all set with five of those six slots, and then say to myself: "Hmmm. There's no way I would normally even consider taking Astarion along. But he seems like an interesting character for story/quest/RP reasons, so I'll let him tag along with me for those reasons, just to see how things play out with him." But in a four-person party, there will never ever be a spot for someone like Astarion no matter how "awesome" a character he may be. This is exactly how I've often included Viconia in my generally good-aligned BG parties.
Posted By: IrenicusBG3 Re: Party Size Discussion - 02/09/20 11:20 PM
Swen officially answered this question today (the game will have 4, but the engine can support more through mods)

https://youtu.be/S5__muccL1c?t=1481
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 02:33 AM
Well, at least he said that you can have followers and I supposse familiars and summoned creatures...

I wonder if the "followers" part will include your retainer or maid/butler of the Noble Knight background.

Posted By: Warlocke Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 05:19 AM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
Well, at least he said that you can have followers and I supposse familiars and summoned creatures...

I wonder if the "followers" part will include your retainer or maid/butler of the Noble Knight background.



I interpreted followers to mean temporary companions for some reason. I don’t know what that is where my mind went. I’ll have to watch again and see if I can glean any hints as to what he meant.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 03:02 PM
Originally Posted by Warlocke

I interpreted followers to mean temporary companions for some reason.

I am pretty sure something of that sort was mentioned earlier.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 03:27 PM
Yes this was a good interview. I really liked that he specifically said they are designing the UI to be able to easily support someone creating a mod to increase party size to six. I sure hope such a mod will be among the first created, and that will be an automatic add-on to any BG3 game I play. Because party of four is just simply not D&D to me.
Posted By: dragonuff Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 03:47 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Yes this was a good interview. I really liked that he specifically said they are designing the UI to be able to easily support someone creating a mod to increase party size to six. I sure hope such a mod will be among the first created, and that will be an automatic add-on to any BG3 game I play. Because party of four is just simply not D&D to me.

I agree its sad that we have to wait for a mod and not say an option we could trigger in the options menu since larian themselves see it as a wanted feature
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 03:57 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
I really liked that he specifically said they are designing the UI to be able to easily support someone creating a mod to increase party size to six.

Also you can rest easy for now, as good companions are intentionally withheld for now. Larian wants to corrupt their players.
Posted By: deathidge Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 04:09 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
With four, this is simply out of the question, and you are forced to be completely technical, even a min-maxer, in how you set up your party.



I disagree. Going completely technical, or min-maxing, is always your choice. And you've already stated you don't even plan on playing this game so idk what the point is.
Posted By: Warlocke Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 04:43 PM
I like my games to be challenged, but not overly punitive. If I can play at the hardest difficulty setting modded with 6 characters and hit that sweet spot for me of reasonably hard then I will be very happy.
Posted By: DrunkPunk Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 04:47 PM
I think the thing people aren't taking into consideration regarding "min-maxing" your party is that Larian is balancing this game for a 4 person party, so this should become way less of a concern. They will likely have to consider things like alternative tactics and strategies for specific fights due to the 4 party limit and the possibility you won't have X class with X spell/ability. Like D:OS2 I'm sure you'll be able to mod in a larger party, but just like D:OS2 it'll likely make the game completely trivial in every encounter due to the nature of the game balance.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 05:02 PM
In DoS games you usually pair the 6-man-party mod with a double monster-Stronger monsters-half-Xp mods and you usually end up reaching the sweet spot of balance fun-difficulty

I wonder if the tools would allow to do the same, or something similar in BG3.
Posted By: AnonySimon Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 05:27 PM
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
I think the thing people aren't taking into consideration regarding "min-maxing" your party is that Larian is balancing this game for a 4 person party, so this should become way less of a concern. They will likely have to consider things like alternative tactics and strategies for specific fights due to the 4 party limit and the possibility you won't have X class with X spell/ability. Like D:OS2 I'm sure you'll be able to mod in a larger party, but just like D:OS2 it'll likely make the game completely trivial in every encounter due to the nature of the game balance.


Neverwinter Nights was balanced around having a party of 2 (yourself, and a henchmen), it doesn't change the fact that me trying to complete the Beggar's Nest in Chapter 1 as a rogue, with Tomi Undergallows (another rogue), was impossible; Instead, I was effectively forced to take with me a different henchmen for that district, despite the fact that I A) enjoyed playing a single-classed rogue, and B) liked Tomi as a travelling companion (because of his quips and conversations).

So no, I don't particularly feel less concerned just because Larian says that they are "balancing the game for a 4 person party". Maybe, in BG3, I want have a party of 4 fighters (no casters or healers or skill-monkeys) or 4 warlocks (almost no spell slots among the four of them, and no healing capabilities). Increasing the party baseline to 6 would mean that even in situations where you have all party members being the same class, you can generally make up for it, by overcompensating in other areas (and without Min-Maxing).

EDIT: Also, seeing the previews of gameplay, it looks like alot of their "balanced for a 4 person party" also requires that the player not be a casual gamer, but master tactician. I personally don't want to spend 5 minutes tactically placing my party members before each fight. Maybe, just maybe, I would rather just breeze through combat so that I could enjoy the actual PLOT of the game. A party of 6 could also allow that to happen.
Posted By: PUR3ICE Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 06:10 PM
Originally Posted by AnonySimon
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
I think the thing people aren't taking into consideration regarding "min-maxing" your party is that Larian is balancing this game for a 4 person party, so this should become way less of a concern. They will likely have to consider things like alternative tactics and strategies for specific fights due to the 4 party limit and the possibility you won't have X class with X spell/ability. Like D:OS2 I'm sure you'll be able to mod in a larger party, but just like D:OS2 it'll likely make the game completely trivial in every encounter due to the nature of the game balance.


Neverwinter Nights was balanced around having a party of 2 (yourself, and a henchmen), it doesn't change the fact that me trying to complete the Beggar's Nest in Chapter 1 as a rogue, with Tomi Undergallows (another rogue), was impossible; Instead, I was effectively forced to take with me a different henchmen for that district, despite the fact that I A) enjoyed playing a single-classed rogue, and B) liked Tomi as a travelling companion (because of his quips and conversations).

So no, I don't particularly feel less concerned just because Larian says that they are "balancing the game for a 4 person party". Maybe, in BG3, I want have a party of 4 fighters (no casters or healers or skill-monkeys) or 4 warlocks (almost no spell slots among the four of them, and no healing capabilities). Increasing the party baseline to 6 would mean that even in situations where you have all party members being the same class, you can generally make up for it, by overcompensating in other areas (and without Min-Maxing).

EDIT: Also, seeing the previews of gameplay, it looks like alot of their "balanced for a 4 person party" also requires that the player not be a casual gamer, but master tactician. I personally don't want to spend 5 minutes tactically placing my party members before each fight. Maybe, just maybe, I would rather just breeze through combat so that I could enjoy the actual PLOT of the game. A party of 6 could also allow that to happen.


Wouldn't it be enough to set the difficulty to easy or normal, if you just want to autofight trough the campaign?
Posted By: Dagless Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 06:15 PM
Originally Posted by dragonuff
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Yes this was a good interview. I really liked that he specifically said they are designing the UI to be able to easily support someone creating a mod to increase party size to six. I sure hope such a mod will be among the first created, and that will be an automatic add-on to any BG3 game I play. Because party of four is just simply not D&D to me.

I agree its sad that we have to wait for a mod and not say an option we could trigger in the options menu since larian themselves see it as a wanted feature


Possibly because then it’s Larian’s responsibility to make the 6 member party option balanced and fun to play. Clearly they’ve made the decision to go with 4 members because they think that’s best for the game they are making. Just upping the count could affect a lot of things that could easily get messy and be less fun for many or most players who then complain it’s rubbish.

It’s probably better to let mods handle that. They’ll probably be a quick dirty one really fast, then others later with people trying to balance throughout the game.


Posted By: Warlocke Re: Party Size Discussion - 03/09/20 06:20 PM
Originally Posted by AnonySimon
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
I think the thing people aren't taking into consideration regarding "min-maxing" your party is that Larian is balancing this game for a 4 person party, so this should become way less of a concern. They will likely have to consider things like alternative tactics and strategies for specific fights due to the 4 party limit and the possibility you won't have X class with X spell/ability. Like D:OS2 I'm sure you'll be able to mod in a larger party, but just like D:OS2 it'll likely make the game completely trivial in every encounter due to the nature of the game balance.


Neverwinter Nights was balanced around having a party of 2 (yourself, and a henchmen), it doesn't change the fact that me trying to complete the Beggar's Nest in Chapter 1 as a rogue, with Tomi Undergallows (another rogue), was impossible; Instead, I was effectively forced to take with me a different henchmen for that district, despite the fact that I A) enjoyed playing a single-classed rogue, and B) liked Tomi as a travelling companion (because of his quips and conversations).

So no, I don't particularly feel less concerned just because Larian says that they are "balancing the game for a 4 person party". Maybe, in BG3, I want have a party of 4 fighters (no casters or healers or skill-monkeys) or 4 warlocks (almost no spell slots among the four of them, and no healing capabilities). Increasing the party baseline to 6 would mean that even in situations where you have all party members being the same class, you can generally make up for it, by overcompensating in other areas (and without Min-Maxing).

EDIT: Also, seeing the previews of gameplay, it looks like alot of their "balanced for a 4 person party" also requires that the player not be a casual gamer, but master tactician. I personally don't want to spend 5 minutes tactically placing my party members before each fight. Maybe, just maybe, I would rather just breeze through combat so that I could enjoy the actual PLOT of the game. A party of 6 could also allow that to happen.


NWN is a terrible analogy. Having a D&D campaign with only 2 characters was always a dumb idea. I’m not sure what BioWare we’re thinking.

Dungeons and Dragons is a game with different classes to fill different roles. That is how the game is designed to be played. You are completely free to make parties that forgo balance, but that will at times make the game harder. That is a feature, not a bug. Your complaints are ridiculous.

The game does not need to be balanced around playing suboptimally. I say that as someone who has tried to do 6 wizard parties in BG and IWD. The game should not also be balanced around requiring strict min maxing, and I have seen nothing in BG3 that suggests this is the case.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 12:00 AM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by kanisatha
I really liked that he specifically said they are designing the UI to be able to easily support someone creating a mod to increase party size to six.

Also you can rest easy for now, as good companions are intentionally withheld for now. Larian wants to corrupt their players.

Yes I noted this too in the interview. These were the two things that made me happy with that interview. smile
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
Like D:OS2 I'm sure you'll be able to mod in a larger party, but just like D:OS2 it'll likely make the game completely trivial in every encounter due to the nature of the game balance.

The joy of having more companions in my party and all the attendant increase in intra-party interactions and banter as well as interactions with the world are way more important and meaningful to me than any aspect of combat. So the combat becoming trivial/non-challenging/unbalanced is a price I will happily accept for all the added fun I get from having a 6-person party.
Posted By: Sordak Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 07:02 AM
WEll thats a shame, esepcialy since the modding thing is irrelevant.
Youd have to revamp the entire game to make a 6 member party fun.

And from what ive seen in OS2 i dont expect an active modding scene for this game.
Posted By: Annyliese Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 07:04 AM
There are roughly 3,500 mods on the workshop for Divinity Original Sin 2.
Posted By: Sordak Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 08:21 AM
and almost none of them content mods.
Most of the good ones are class mods.

a lot of them are outright cheats or mods that make the game easier.

the best mods are encounter rebalancing mods and that, but they are the minortiy.
Actual conten tmods in the vein of NEverwinter nights? havent seen any.
Posted By: Annyliese Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 08:25 AM
I'm not personally a fan of many of the mods on there, but comparing it to NWN is a bit unfair, especially given how long NWN had to grow and its toolset.

For the purpose of this thread, though, mods did happen for larger parties, including a file change to support more people online.
Posted By: Madscientist Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 09:34 AM
Why did BG1 chose to have 6 chars?
Since then lots of people think every RPG must have a party of 6. ( see this thread ).

As far as I know, PnP DnD has been designed for 4 players plus 1 DM.

I have played several computer RPGs with different party sizes. I liked most of them and some were bad, but the party size was never the main factor why I liked or disliked a game.
The main problem with party size were games with way more party members than active party members and the ones who are not in the party do not gain exp. This means grinding for dungeons were you need several different active groups or when you need a specific char for one area or quest. I never finished Final Fantasy 6 because I hated grinding when some late game dungeons require several active parties at once.
Posted By: Annyliese Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 09:38 AM
The widespread connection between people wasn't quite as developed as it is now. People talked, but 6 player parties for D&D groups with friends were pretty common, and I think the group that Minsc spawned out of was the primary inspiration for the party size in BG1-2, but don't quote me. I could be misremembering. There's a video on it somewhere, might try to find it tomorrow.
Posted By: Torque Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 11:53 AM
Originally Posted by Madscientist
Why did BG1 chose to have 6 chars?
Since then lots of people think every RPG must have a party of 6. ( see this thread ).

As far as I know, PnP DnD has been designed for 4 players plus 1 DM.

I have played several computer RPGs with different party sizes. I liked most of them and some were bad, but the party size was never the main factor why I liked or disliked a game.
The main problem with party size were games with way more party members than active party members and the ones who are not in the party do not gain exp. This means grinding for dungeons were you need several different active groups or when you need a specific char for one area or quest. I never finished Final Fantasy 6 because I hated grinding when some late game dungeons require several active parties at once.


Its not necessarily true that Baldurs Gate set some kind of standard for the genre when it comes to party size but you make a good point about PnP becoming to bloated with too many players. And since a key feature (I think it is) of BG3 is the coop mode adding 2 extra players it might not work that well. In a single player game you are the star and every other character is essentially disposable and party siize wouldnt matter except for balancing issues.

I'm curious to see statistics from the D:OS games of exactly how many people play coop or single player, or both.
Posted By: etonbears Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 10:06 PM
Originally Posted by Annyliese
I'm not personally a fan of many of the mods on there, but comparing it to NWN is a bit unfair, especially given how long NWN had to grow and its toolset.

For the purpose of this thread, though, mods did happen for larger parties, including a file change to support more people online.


Not really unfair; with the NWN games, people were actively creating content well ahead of the game releases because there was a lot of community engagement by the developers. Obviously the quality and usability of a toolset, post-release, also affects how many people can indulge their creativity, but you have to spark some interest early.

Maybe nobody cares as much any more, or perhaps the creative community prefer Bethesda style RPGs to D&D?
Posted By: Annyliese Re: Party Size Discussion - 04/09/20 10:14 PM
Originally Posted by etonbears


Not really unfair; with the NWN games, people were actively creating content well ahead of the game releases because there was a lot of community engagement by the developers. Obviously the quality and usability of a toolset, post-release, also affects how many people can indulge their creativity, but you have to spark some interest early.

Maybe nobody cares as much any more, or perhaps the creative community prefer Bethesda style RPGs to D&D?


You bring up some good points; but NWN was also marketed as a game where you could create your own adventures. It was a selling point of the game. Though DOS2 modding was huge, I'm not of the opinion that mod support was one of its biggest features. I think it just extended the game's staying power.

So to some degree, I think the answer is that the creative community prefers the other styles of game. But more because they're more accessible, rather than what type of RPG the base game is.
Posted By: etonbears Re: Party Size Discussion - 05/09/20 01:40 PM
Originally Posted by Annyliese
Originally Posted by etonbears


Not really unfair; with the NWN games, people were actively creating content well ahead of the game releases because there was a lot of community engagement by the developers. Obviously the quality and usability of a toolset, post-release, also affects how many people can indulge their creativity, but you have to spark some interest early.

Maybe nobody cares as much any more, or perhaps the creative community prefer Bethesda style RPGs to D&D?


You bring up some good points; but NWN was also marketed as a game where you could create your own adventures. It was a selling point of the game. Though DOS2 modding was huge, I'm not of the opinion that mod support was one of its biggest features. I think it just extended the game's staying power.

So to some degree, I think the answer is that the creative community prefers the other styles of game. But more because they're more accessible, rather than what type of RPG the base game is.


Agreed, NWN being marketed as an adventure-building platform is why the developers were more engaged with the mod community. Larian are not really producing their games with adventure-building in mind, so even with tools available, the engagement isn't particularly strong.

As games/engines become ever more complex, I think you need a much stronger emphasis on mod-building credentials to get much traction. Even Bioware no longer have that focus, hence the rather limited mod availability with DragonAge after switching engine, which is a shame.
Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 05:59 AM
While I could anticipate they might go the way that they have said, I'm really disappointed with that decision. They could at least make it an option. He obviously knows there are lots of people that want a 6 person party or he'd not have hesitated so much with his answer. He knew a lot of people would be disappointed when they heard that. Leaving it up to the modders just plain sucks imo. First off you have to wait, and that is assuming someone will even do a good one, and further that it will function well. Having an option when you start would be SO much nicer.

There is a lot to look forward to with this game still, it will be a fun RPG I'm sure, but, I'm still not sure it's really going to feel like BG to me where as with 6 characters I'm not sure how it couldn't so long as I accept the different engine.

I'm real butthurt and triggerd. My glasses flew clean off my face. I'm gonna go cry now. Swen why... Please add the option...

I'm playing through Baldurs Gate II again atm and just at the beginning where you lose Imoen from the party and you know what... IT SUCKS. Now I don't have a good rogue... And now if they don't put the option in (which wouldn't have to be super perfectly balanced I woudln't think, maybe you could just play around with the difficulty a bit) I'll have to wait indefinitely for a what could very well be a buggy mod (holy crap did we have some issues with DOSII mods even well after it had been out for a while) or might not ever even be created. I'm sure someone will TRY, but how long will it take and how functional will it be is entirely unknown and up in the air when it could be built right into the game and actually work... frown
Posted By: Kylu Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 07:06 AM
They say 4, we want 6. How about a compromise of 5?
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 08:24 AM
Originally Posted by Aeridyne


I'm playing through Baldurs Gate II again atm and just at the beginning where you lose Imoen from the party and you know what... IT SUCKS. Now I don't have a good rogue... And now if they don't put the option in (which wouldn't have to be super perfectly balanced I woudln't think, maybe you could just play around with the difficulty a bit) I'll have to wait indefinitely for a what could very well be a buggy mod (holy crap did we have some issues with DOSII mods even well after it had been out for a while) or might not ever even be created. I'm sure someone will TRY, but how long will it take and how functional will it be is entirely unknown and up in the air when it could be built right into the game and actually work... frown

You do not really need a rogue in 5e to open locks, disable stuff and be proficient in sneaking, tho. Any class (even a fighter in medium armour could do that, or in heavy armour with only disadvantage in sneak too)

That´s the same for all the skills. Any character could be trained in any skill and be competent at it, due to your class, background or feat. 5e is very flexible in that regard.
Posted By: Nyanko Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 01:27 PM
Relax, guys. Sven just confirmed it can be modded to 6 characters. I guess the balancing will be shit but if you really want 6 chars, you can. No worries.
Posted By: arvid Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 02:54 PM
Beside the rules 5e actually there could be 4 player characters enough.

But ... let decide the players, I would like it with optional 6. Even without extra modding there were already old screenshots of a very old stage of baldurs gate 3 showing 5 player portraits. Hah!

And it would be more roleplay, more fun and more player friendly if the single- and multiplayer groups could decide for their own. And not tell the 5th or 6th friend to go!

hehe
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 04:49 PM
Originally Posted by arvid

But ... let decide the players, I would like it with optional 6. Even without extra modding there were already old screenshots of a very old stage of baldurs gate 3 showing 5 player portraits. Hah!
hehe

While our party will consist of 4 people it seems there will be possibility for more units to temporary join our team. There are summons, pets, familiars but also temporary quest companions, if I understood Larian correctly. So it's possible we will have 5 or more characters in our party in certain situations.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 05:57 PM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by arvid

But ... let decide the players, I would like it with optional 6. Even without extra modding there were already old screenshots of a very old stage of baldurs gate 3 showing 5 player portraits. Hah!
hehe

While our party will consist of 4 people it seems there will be possibility for more units to temporary join our team. There are summons, pets, familiars but also temporary quest companions, if I understood Larian correctly. So it's possible we will have 5 or more characters in our party in certain situations.


Do you have a source about followers that may be companions ?
This could be great but don't really remember about it.

Anyway temporary followers is not really the same as companions.
As many players, I like management and a party of 6 instead of 4 is 150% more management smile

It could be great if the temporary companions you're talking abouté could become real "classical" companions (meaning : without the caracteristics of origin characters)
Posted By: DrunkPunk Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 05:59 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by arvid

But ... let decide the players, I would like it with optional 6. Even without extra modding there were already old screenshots of a very old stage of baldurs gate 3 showing 5 player portraits. Hah!
hehe

While our party will consist of 4 people it seems there will be possibility for more units to temporary join our team. There are summons, pets, familiars but also temporary quest companions, if I understood Larian correctly. So it's possible we will have 5 or more characters in our party in certain situations.


Do you have a source about followers that may be companions ?
I don't really remember about it.

Anyway temporary followers is not really the same as companions.
As many players, I like management and a party of 6 instead of 4 is 150% more management smile


I think they talked about it very briefly in the first live stream of the game. I remember noticing that and discussing it with some folks either here or on Reddit, and people pointed out the mention of followers which would be temporary additions to the party.
Posted By: Warlocke Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 06:02 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by arvid

But ... let decide the players, I would like it with optional 6. Even without extra modding there were already old screenshots of a very old stage of baldurs gate 3 showing 5 player portraits. Hah!
hehe

While our party will consist of 4 people it seems there will be possibility for more units to temporary join our team. There are summons, pets, familiars but also temporary quest companions, if I understood Larian correctly. So it's possible we will have 5 or more characters in our party in certain situations.


Do you have a source about followers that may be companions ?
I don't really remember about it.

Anyway temporary followers is not really the same as companions.
As many players, I like management and a party of 6 instead of 4 is 150% more management smile


Swen also talked about it on a recent interview on YouTube. That was when Swen also mentioned that the UI was designed to handle more party members, so the game could easily be modded to accommodate 6 characters.
Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 08:44 PM
Originally Posted by Warlocke
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by arvid

But ... let decide the players, I would like it with optional 6. Even without extra modding there were already old screenshots of a very old stage of baldurs gate 3 showing 5 player portraits. Hah!
hehe

While our party will consist of 4 people it seems there will be possibility for more units to temporary join our team. There are summons, pets, familiars but also temporary quest companions, if I understood Larian correctly. So it's possible we will have 5 or more characters in our party in certain situations.


Do you have a source about followers that may be companions ?
I don't really remember about it.

Anyway temporary followers is not really the same as companions.
As many players, I like management and a party of 6 instead of 4 is 150% more management smile


Swen also talked about it on a recent interview on YouTube. That was when Swen also mentioned that the UI was designed to handle more party members, so the game could easily be modded to accommodate 6 characters.


If it's so easy, why don't they just do it? I ask this rhetorically. I suspect its not ultra difficult but of course would take some of their time and they don't want to spend any time on it apparently which I think is kind of a crock since so many players obviously want it. It seems like they just simply don't want to, and if they did it would be begrudgingly while giving us 6 char requesting folks some serious side eye. But you want input and here it is, we want six. It's the most requested thing for the game it seems like pretty much or at the very least one of! If it can be "easily" modded then why not just make it an option built into the game so that we know it will actually work.

And yeah the companions are temporary, kind of like summons, like the bear cub or whatever it was. Not a full character and probably either when it dies, it dies or it's just a fun addition to the party but not really anything super special.

We (my gf and I) played DOSII w/ the 6 story char plus 2 of our own creation for a total of 8 plus any temp followers, summons etc. They know how to make their engine handle more numbers without a problem. In this case they just simply don't want to, but I don't want to rely on an unstable mod again and trying to figure out how to remotely balance the game myself, which took playing through the whole game with the mods in play just to see how it balanced out anyway. They could do that and make a reasonably balanced experience for 6 as well as 4. And again the dialogue wasn't an issue in DOSII and I don't see why it would have to be in BG3 either. Each character had a set of interactions based on situations and others in the party etc. They could do the same thing.

So yeah, they know we want it, they just don't want to. But it's "easy"... And lots of people want it, but we have to rely on a modder to do the work for us and not the game developer. K...
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 09:03 PM
Originally Posted by Aeridyne

If it's so easy, why don't they just do it? I ask this rhetorically. I suspect its not ultra difficult but of course would take some of their time and they don't want to spend any time on it apparently which I think is kind of a crock since so many players obviously want it.

Clearly they believe BG3 will be better with four characters. The game will be balancing around 4 player party. Giving official support for a bigger party also creates an expectation for it to be of high quality. When players mod 6 player parties it will break the balance. Some might not care about it, or might see it as a worthy traidoff, but that's not something a company would want to add as an officially sanctified version. They want you to play with a party with 4. And they said, that for those who don't want that, it should be easy to mod.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/09/20 09:55 PM
Originally Posted by DrunkPunk
Originally Posted by Maximuuus

Do you have a source about followers that may be companions ?
I don't really remember about it.

Anyway temporary followers is not really the same as companions.
As many players, I like management and a party of 6 instead of 4 is 150% more management smile

I think they talked about it very briefly in the first live stream of the game. I remember noticing that and discussing it with some folks either here or on Reddit, and people pointed out the mention of followers which would be temporary additions to the party.

Unfortunately, I can't find the exact source, though I did find some other people having the same impressions. I could be wrong in some capacity - maybe paople fight with you, but you don't have direct control over them. Some interesting screens I run across but I don't know if they are relevant to the discussion.


[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]

First one might be just summons or familiars and such, but second one has a 5th dude in the party. It could be just the Warlock guy and Larian experimenting with 5 men party though.
Posted By: Sordak Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/09/20 11:14 AM
i think followers refers to "camp followers"
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/09/20 11:23 AM
Originally Posted by Sordak
i think followers refers to "camp followers"

Something was said when discussing party size of 4, that made we think: "oh, so like Shandra from NWN2". Unfortunately, I spend quite some time skimming through videos I might have heard it in, but didn't manage to locate it.
Posted By: AnonySimon Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/09/20 02:16 PM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Aeridyne

If it's so easy, why don't they just do it? I ask this rhetorically. I suspect its not ultra difficult but of course would take some of their time and they don't want to spend any time on it apparently which I think is kind of a crock since so many players obviously want it.

Clearly they believe BG3 will be better with four characters. The game will be balancing around 4 player party. Giving official support for a bigger party also creates an expectation for it to be of high quality. When players mod 6 player parties it will break the balance. Some might not care about it, or might see it as a worthy traidoff, but that's not something a company would want to add as an officially sanctified version. They want you to play with a party with 4. And they said, that for those who don't want that, it should be easy to mod.


They say that it should be easy to mod, but we don't even know if BG3 will be coming to consoles like XBox or Playstation. And even if it does, do you really think that there will be mod support? How long did it take for Skyrim to receive mod support for consoles? The point is, I would much rather having a party of 6 be included, and then players who want a "balanced" game could stick with 4, while those who are more casual gamers can play BG3 like a real Baldur's Gate game, and have a party of 6.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/09/20 02:27 PM
Originally Posted by AnonySimon

They say that it should be easy to mod, but we don't even know if BG3 will be coming to consoles like XBox or Playstation.

If such mode is made, and is popular a gift-bag like in D:OS2 could be a fair compromise.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 08:48 AM
I just think about something about balance.

I don't remember how it work in DoS and I don't know how it works in D&D but in the older BG games, the experience you acquire is divided between the member of the party.
i.e if you kill a wolf that rewards a solo player with 600 xp, every member of a party of 4 would have 150xp and every member of a party of 6 would only have 100xp.

At the end of the game, a solo player could reach a higher level than a party of 6 (if you consider another/no level cap).
You can finish BG1 and 2 with only 1 companion. There are no "cheat" skill like lone-wolf or things like that if I'm not wrong and multiclassing allow a limited team to face many different situations.

If we project this exemple in DoS or in D&D5e : does every (alive) characters after killing the wolf will acquire the 600xp or is it divided the same way ?

That said, I don't really understand why it should be impossible to balance the game whatever the number of companions you choose to play with.

Do you have clues about that point ? Maybe it's related to the rules or something else I don't think about ?
To have a concrete exemple, isn't it possible to play the exact same D&D campaign with 4 or 6 characters if you have 50% more XP while playing with only 4 ?



Posted By: Nyanko Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 09:04 AM
The unbalance doesn't have anything to do with the XP you get. Even though the 4 characters will get more XP than 6 characters, becoming stronger individually, the encounters are the problem. The initiative turns become much more advantageous if you are 6 compared to 4, no matter how powerful the characters are. Cause with the system in place right now, your chances to get consecutive characters in initiative order and thus being able to play whoever you like to get an edge in combat would be too high.

And there is another problem with relying on XP to balance the game, it would mean no characters in a group of 6 would ever reach level 10 by the end of the game, and so many players would complain their favorite chars were too weak until completion of the adventure. Tricky to balance this.

The more room you leave between full group number and lonewolf playthrough enjoyment, the crazier more difficult it is to balance.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 09:25 AM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus

i.e if you kill a wolf that rewards a solo player with 600 xp, every member of a party of 4 would have 150xp and every member of a party of 6 would only have 100xp

It might be a nice boost for “less characters” challenge, but it is still what it is - game is designed around a certain party size. In BG1&2 that’s 6, in BG3 it’s 4.

I think it is more intuitive to understand that if you take less companions then possible you make things unintentionally difficult for yourself, then that if you exceed 60% of permitted team size you make things for yourself unintentionally easy.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 10:11 AM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Maximuuus

i.e if you kill a wolf that rewards a solo player with 600 xp, every member of a party of 4 would have 150xp and every member of a party of 6 would only have 100xp

It might be a nice boost for “less characters” challenge, but it is still what it is - game is designed around a certain party size. In BG1&2 that’s 6, in BG3 it’s 4.

I think it is more intuitive to understand that if you take less companions then possible you make things unintentionally difficult for yourself, then that if you exceed 60% of permitted team size you make things for yourself unintentionally easy.


Isn't the fact that you can do the entire old games alone while it is designed for 6 a proove that the balance is not that bad ?
(Even if, of course it increase the difficulty).

We'll also have difficulty level not to increase too much the difficulty. I.E P:K have tons of options so players can create their own custom difficulty level. That could easily solve the problem of "a game designed for" and allow players to custom their experience.



Originally Posted by Nyanko
The unbalance doesn't have anything to do with the XP you get. Even though the 4 characters will get more XP than 6 characters, becoming stronger individually, the encounters are the problem. The initiative turns become much more advantageous if you are 6 compared to 4, no matter how powerful the characters are. Cause with the system in place right now, your chances to get consecutive characters in initiative order and thus being able to play whoever you like to get an edge in combat would be too high.

And there is another problem with relying on XP to balance the game, it would mean no characters in a group of 6 would ever reach level 10 by the end of the game, and so many players would complain their favorite chars were too weak until completion of the adventure. Tricky to balance this.

The more room you leave between full group number and lonewolf playthrough enjoyment, the crazier more difficult it is to balance.


I hear what you say about Initiative even if I don't really think it's a game breaking thing.
About levels, I don't really see why it's a problem that you can't reach the same levels at the end of the game. In every games, only players doing every side quests and combats ande stuff that gives XP reach the higher level. I don't feel sad because I don't reach it. Level 10 is not the cap anymore so everyone will be able to reach it.
Posted By: Nyanko Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 10:42 AM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus

About levels, I don't really see why it's a problem that you can't reach the same levels at the end of the game. In every games, only players doing every side quests and combats ande stuff that gives XP reach the higher level. I don't feel sad because I don't reach it. Level 10 is not the cap anymore so everyone will be able to reach it.


I don't agree with this, because the highest level possible you can achieve will be calculated with the least party members in a group in the eventuality the XP would be shared among characters. So if the devs have decided for example the max level is 13, because they haven't implemented any spells or abilities above this cap, and someone wants to play the game solo. In the case it's the proposed shared XP calculation, the 6 party members will have to share the same amount of XP one character can get to reach 13. And honestly, I am not sure they would get to level 10 at all.

Because if some players here want their party to stick to the max available, there are others who want to play solo. And in my opinion, both should be considered valid in a game like this.

That's why I think it's a much bigger stretch to go from 1 to 6 party members than from 1 to 4 in this scenario.

But all things considered, I think the shared XP is impossible cause how would it work with 15 companions that you can switch according to your playstyle?
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 11:47 AM
I am firmly against the shared xp model for games. First of all, that model means that unless the number of companions remain relatively limited and things are designed very carefully, there will be at least a few companions that end up falling behind in levels, which makes for less flexibility in party composition later down the line, plus and more importantly in my opinion, it makes it harder to fully enjoy your favourite character because you have to swap them out to both keep a balanced party and keep everyone leveled equally.

Second, I am of the opinion that the abilities granted at the maximum level a game provides is part of the promise of the game. That by the end you'll be able to enjoy all the power and tools available to you to some degree or another. And I think it's important that any player who plays the game to completion, whether they be casual or super into systems mastery, should be able to enjoy that content. Therefore you shouldn't incentivice playing with fewer characters in order to reach that max level. In Pathfinder: Kingmaker I played through the whole game with a full party at all times and only made it to level 18 or so, which was a big bummer. I think all characters should earn xp at the same time and that for an RPG, you should be able to enjoy that maximum level for a decent amount of time, at least the last 10% of the game, maybe even the last 15%.
Posted By: Tyndaleon Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 12:23 PM
I'm not really 'against' either approach per se, but if a gun is pointed to my head and I had to choose, I do prefer a non-shared/entire party based XP assignment vs. whatever XP gain split between all party members approach.
Posted By: Wormerine Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 12:50 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus

Isn't the fact that you can do the entire old games alone while it is designed for 6 a proove that the balance is not that bad ?
(Even if, of course it increase the difficulty).

We'll also have difficulty level not to increase too much the difficulty. I.E P:K have tons of options so players can create their own custom difficulty level. That could easily solve the problem of "a game designed for" and allow players to custom their experience.

It's probably comes down to what one wants from an RPG - for me the fact that players breeze through BG1&2 with a single character is a sign of the system being fundamentally broken. It is afterall a party RPG with a class system designed to limited what each character can individually do. If single character can do it all, IMO it breaks what the game is about. And to counter argument: "what the problem if you choose how to play it?" - in BG1&2 I usually find 2 or 3 characters being constantly useful, while others (like spellcasters) usually hang back and do little to nothing, and then contribute only to the most useful encounters. That's not something I felt though in modern RPGs (be it PoEs, D:OS1&2 or Kingmaker). I suppose it all comes down to me wanting to play full party micromanagement game, and I want it to be as tight and tailor-made experience as possible. I am selfish like that.

I am always in favour of modular difficulty, though I am not sure if the party size is something that should be part of it. Still, I would happily trade some of P:K flexibility for tighter pre-set difficulties.
Posted By: Sordak Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 02:27 PM
One thing id disregard in balancing. is the "Infinity engine-isms"

by that i mean gameplay conventions that arose from the games, but not the intnetion of the games.

The classic Baldurs Gate sinlge character Wizard wank. The same is true for divinity with Lone wolf playthroughs.

I personally dont understand what people get from those min maxed single character playthroughs, to me they just seem like more boring versions of what the game is intended to be played like.
but i dont need to understand why they do it.

The game should not be balanced around those kinds of players. Theyll find a way to break the game one way or another, so no point changing the XP system to suit such an unusual playstyle.

Beeing able to change the party composition midway through the game and have a good expirience one way another is a superior system to allowing some people to build overpowered characters.

If they want to do that, theyll have a mod that does exactly that on day 1.


Also: man i knew this was gonna happen when they said the level cap wasnt level 10. now the high power level wizard masturbators are coming out of the woodwork now and demand the game is designed entierly aorund their power fantasy, like they do with every single other CRPG on the market.
Posted By: CandrianIllborne Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 02:49 PM
I don't think anyone is demanding that the game be built around solo playing, rather that it remain a possibility. The original games were in no way balanced for solo play, though maybe there's a design doc out there somewhere saying that it was. Most solo players that I've seen are exploiting the system in an intelligent way and also cheesing quite a bit through the game. I like the idea of solo play but have usually just done party based stuff, so I'd like if BG3 was like the originals in this respect. Made for a party but soloable if you know how to bend the game and use it to your advantage if that's what you choose to do. Personally, I like a big party because it brings in all those interesting character personalities, and it was hard choosing who to bring along and who to leave behind. That said, I'm not hung up on the party being smaller. It'll probably give the game a more focused feel, potentially.

Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 02:58 PM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
It's probably comes down to what one wants from an RPG - for me the fact that players breeze through BG1&2 with a single character is a sign of the system being fundamentally broken. It is afterall a party RPG with a class system designed to limited what each character can individually do. If single character can do it all, IMO it breaks what the game is about. And to counter argument: "what the problem if you choose how to play it?" - in BG1&2 I usually find 2 or 3 characters being constantly useful, while others (like spellcasters) usually hang back and do little to nothing, and then contribute only to the most useful encounters. That's not something I felt though in modern RPGs (be it PoEs, D:OS1&2 or Kingmaker). I suppose it all comes down to me wanting to play full party micromanagement game, and I want it to be as tight and tailor-made experience as possible. I am selfish like that.

Completely agree with this. I feel exactly the same way.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 03:11 PM
Before falling in the "power level wizard masturbator" category, I'd like to say that I never played such a game in solo (or even without a companion slot empty).
The reason why I want a 6 party base game is because I love more customization and more management.

I was talking about it to introduce the question about balance and difficulty.
I absolutely don't want the game to be designed for a solo character if that means it will be over easy with 4 or more characters. That's absolutely not what I wrote.

No one had an experience with a D&D campaign ?
I.E Descent into Arvernus is designed for 4 to 6 players. What are the difference when you DM it for 4 or 6 friends ? Is that only a question of one or two more monsters in encounters ? Something else ?

Because whatever are our experience with video games, the rules comes from D&D so that could give us (me?) a better overview of what should really be re-balanced with more (or less) companions.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 04:27 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus


No one had an experience with a D&D campaign ?
I.E Descent into Arvernus is designed for 4 to 6 players. What are the difference when you DM it for 4 or 6 friends ? Is that only a question of one or two more monsters in encounters ? Something else ?


Right now 5e has 6 years in the making so there are many "Encounter" tables or even Apps that allow you to calculate loot and number of monsters, but usually you do it trom stretch.
In most videogames they usually make tougher enemies by adding more hp and give them more damage, but that´s not usually a thing in TT because the creatures have their stat blocks that you don´t tweak unless it´s necessary. You usually play with the quantity and quality of the enemies.
Yo do not only add more minions to the mix, sometimes you use custom monsters (ie. Something sneaky if they fireball their way through any encounter, damage-resistant golems if they excel at one-hit enemies, etc) or change the terrain ( if they´re a group that has only melee characters you put some snipers or mages in a ridge, add traps, make the enemies don´t use skills your players are inmune to, like sleep against a group of elves or put a swamp in the middle),... You know the party composition and the players and you can change some things so it´s different from what someone would do in a videogame.

I do not know if that´s appliable to a videogame, but in my experience when you have more players (or if the players make an above-average strong group) you can tune the difficulty on the fly. You usually plan in advance but you have the advantage of being able to change things whenever you need to.

But if you want to know if you have to change every encounter and add more enemies or improve the quality of the enemies if you have more players? Yes, and you usually have to tweak things the more players you have. The easier way is to add more enemies to the lot, but there are differences. It´s not the same add two melee grunts or a couple zombies more than add another wizard, a gelatinous cube or mephits.

Of course that´s only possible if you are a human DM he he.
Posted By: KillerRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 05:01 PM
Originally Posted by Wormerine
[

It's probably comes down to what one wants from an RPG - for me the fact that players breeze through BG1&2 with a single character is a sign of the system being fundamentally broken. It is afterall a party RPG with a class system designed to limited what each character can individually do.


By that standard both PoE2 and DOS2 are fundamentally broken. Obsidian has a plaque with the names of the people who successfully soloed PoE2 on maximum difficulty. DOS2 put in lone wolf to encourage solo play. As far as I what I want from an RPG it's replay value. I only soloed BG2 after I tried every possible party combination and heard every line of dialogue -- no other RPG has come close in terms of replayability.

Besides the solo mode discussion is really something for another thread. I want 6 slots and lots of NPCs for all those interactions.

And this is just the nature of D&D -- it's been around for a long time there are many different ways to play it. When I first started playing it DMs were creating "puzzle" adventures. "you need to cross this chasm -- it's 40 feet across. You have a ten foot pole, 20 feet of rope and a levitation spell. What do you do?" The next group I played with saw D&D as a form of acting -- you really needed to respond as your character would. Yet another group was all about positioning and tactics. "No you can't say you cast the fireball in place that only hits the enemies and not the party -- show me on this grid where the fireball lands and I'll tell you if you killed your party or not". (didn't enjoy playing with that last group)

The challenge of making an D&D game is accommodate fans who like different aspects of the game and I don't think it's a flaw that BG that accommodated all three styles. Would have appreciated more riddles but that's just me.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 05:04 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
Originally Posted by Maximuuus


No one had an experience with a D&D campaign ?
I.E Descent into Arvernus is designed for 4 to 6 players. What are the difference when you DM it for 4 or 6 friends ? Is that only a question of one or two more monsters in encounters ? Something else ?


Right now 5e has 6 years in the making so there are many "Encounter" tables or even Apps that allow you to calculate loot and number of monsters, but usually you do it trom stretch.
In most videogames they usually make tougher enemies by adding more hp and give them more damage, but that´s not usually a thing in TT because the creatures have their stat blocks that you don´t tweak unless it´s necessary. You usually play with the quantity and quality of the enemies.
Yo do not only add more minions to the mix, sometimes you use custom monsters (ie. Something sneaky if they fireball their way through any encounter, damage-resistant golems if they excel at one-hit enemies, etc) or change the terrain ( if they´re a group that has only melee characters you put some snipers or mages in a ridge, add traps, make the enemies don´t use skills your players are inmune to, like sleep against a group of elves or put a swamp in the middle),... You know the party composition and the players and you can change some things so it´s different from what someone would do in a videogame.

I do not know if that´s appliable to a videogame, but in my experience when you have more players (or if the players make an above-average strong group) you can tune the difficulty on the fly. You usually plan in advance but you have the advantage of being able to change things whenever you need to.

But if you want to know if you have to change every encounter and add more enemies or improve the quality of the enemies if you have more players? Yes, and you usually have to tweak things the more players you have. The easier way is to add more enemies to the lot, but there are differences. It´s not the same add two melee grunts or a couple zombies more than add another wizard, a gelatinous cube or mephits.

Of course that´s only possible if you are a human DM he he.


Thanks a lot, I was waiting for you here wink

I agree that it seems very difficult or impossible to have those custom variations in a video game but as you said at the end, playing on numbers and monsters quality could be the most "easy" things to do as a GM.

If I understood well the Dropped Frames, Sven talked about another thing I didn't know about D&D : CR.
If I'm right, it looks they changed it a bit for it to work like a "monster level".
Correct me if I'm wrong but he talked about that saying that this modifications will allow us to have more variations in encounters.

Assuming I had understood and imagine things like they will be, it could help a lot to easily increase HP/stats/...

On the other hand, I have to admit that the "more monsters" things suits better to me in a TB game.
Not sure it's realistic but I imagine another layer, maybe at the begining when you start the game : which difficulty level (define the overall difficulty) AND which party size for this campaign (define the numbers of opponent) ?

Is that very difficult in a video game to add a monster or two for every encounter or change a goblin warrior into goblin wizard ?
I guess it could be easy for many encounters. I.E it's probably not hard to add a crocodile or two on Fort Joy... But it's harder to add a goblin arround Crusher for the optionnal fight. It's a big job to do anyway.
Posted By: KillerRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 05:08 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus


No one had an experience with a D&D campaign ?
I.E Descent into Arvernus is designed for 4 to 6 players. What are the difference when you DM it for 4 or 6 friends ? Is that only a question of one or two more monsters in encounters ? Something else ?


I've played PnP with 4-8 characters 1, 2nd and 3.5 but not 5th ed. But looking through Avernus it strikes me as module that favors 1) negotiating and 2) sneaking. Any party that tried direct assault would die pretty quickly.

The campaigns I ran for 4 people had more puzzles and riddles than anything else. The thief got more "stage time" than anyone else "checking for traps and secret doors . . ."
Posted By: Gt27mustang Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/09/20 06:01 PM
Originally Posted by KillerRabbit
But looking through Avernus it strikes me as module that favors 1) negotiating and 2) sneaking. Any party that tried direct assault would die pretty quickly.


1) yes 2) definetly

Im DMing Avernus right now and my party has a "we'll-sneak-but-if-it-doesn't-work-we'll-kill-them-all" approach and so far so good 🙄
Posted By: Kylu Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/09/20 12:37 AM
Again I say 5 as standard/unmodded. It works with WoW and PoE series.
Posted By: Alodar Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/09/20 12:53 AM
As confirmed in the in the Q&A of Community Update 6:

Quote
Modding will be supported, but not before 1.0, not during EA. Again, we really need to focus on working with feedback and creating the game.


Early Access will allow you to control a main character with 3 companions.
This will not change during the entirety of Early Access. (Approximately a year)

Mod support will be worked on after the game is officially released sometime in late 2021.
At that point someone will likely create a Mod to support the control of more characters than the game is balanced for.

If the control of 6 characters is a deal breaker for you then I would avoid playing Early Access.
Posted By: Full Bleed Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/09/20 01:48 AM
Originally Posted by Vlad the Impaler
The more I read the comments in the forum the more I get the impression that Larian is basically just going to put D&D skins on a different game so it will look like D&D, but it won't really play or feel like D&D. I guess it's a good thing I can still play BG & BG2.


From--

Tyranny of Dragons: "The ideal party size is four characters."
Rise of Tiamat: "Four characters is the ideal party size."
Tomb of Annihilation: "This adventure is designed to begin with a party of four to six 1st-level characters"
Storm Kings Thunder: "Storm King's Thunder is a DUNGEONS & DRAGONS adventure for four to six player characters."
Curse of Stradh: "Curse of Strahd is a story of gothic horror, presented here as a DUNGEONS & DRAGONS roleplaying game adventure for a party of four to six adventurers of levels 1-10."
Baldur's Gate- Descent into Avernus: "DESIGNED FOR AN ADVENTURING PARTY OF four to six 1st-level characters"
Etc...

You occasionally see 3-7 recommended for tournament type adventure play. But, no matter how you slice it, the adventures that make up the pillars of 5e were designed for play in the 4-6 level range.

BG3 almost certainly went with four because that's what the Divinity Engine was already optimized for, but no one can legitimately propose that a 4 party 5e game won't feel like D&D. 5e party balance just isn't the same as 2e party balance.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/09/20 05:13 AM
@Maximuus

About your question on how they will handle difficulty in BG3, they´re answered that in the Community update.



Quote
Will difficulty choices affect more than just enemy health and damage? e.g. increasing the DC on some rolls while exploring the world?
Yes there are many features planned for different difficulty levels, which we’ll go over in a future update - but EA isn’t launching with difficulty choices, as we prioritize everything you need to have an enjoyable experience.


If they are handling difficulty level adding more difficult encounters, not just adding hp and damage to pre-existing creatures the modders of the hypotetical 6-man-party mod would have their work easier if you have access to the tools that allow the game engine to change encounters depending on your difficulty (and if you can change it midgame) or much more difficult if you have to balance the encounters for every character more you add in every difficulty mode...

As always, a lot of "ifs" We still have to wait until we have the modding tools. That would be after the EA, in an unknown date, according to the Community update.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/09/20 02:53 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
@Maximuus

About your question on how they will handle difficulty in BG3, they´re answered that in the Community update.



Quote
Will difficulty choices affect more than just enemy health and damage? e.g. increasing the DC on some rolls while exploring the world?
Yes there are many features planned for different difficulty levels, which we’ll go over in a future update - but EA isn’t launching with difficulty choices, as we prioritize everything you need to have an enjoyable experience.


If they are handling difficulty level adding more difficult encounters, not just adding hp and damage to pre-existing creatures the modders of the hypotetical 6-man-party mod would have their work easier if you have access to the tools that allow the game engine to change encounters depending on your difficulty (and if you can change it midgame) or much more difficult if you have to balance the encounters for every character more you add in every difficulty mode...

As always, a lot of "ifs" We still have to wait until we have the modding tools. That would be after the EA, in an unknown date, according to the Community update.


We'll have to wait and see how it works... lots of "if" actually as you said. One thing is not an "if" : I'll ask for an official party of 6 until the end but of course in a positive way and trying to find solutions (solutions from a random player that is not a video game developper).

I don't really like mods. I like playing the official version of a game and I'll try to convince Larian that this could be a great improvement for their Baldur's Gate game(s).

Wait and see on that point. Let's play the game first.

Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/09/20 05:55 AM
^ Agree completely
Posted By: Aeridyne Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/09/20 06:07 AM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus

We'll have to wait and see how it works... lots of "if" actually as you said. One thing is not an "if" : I'll ask for an official party of 6 until the end but of course in a positive way and trying to find solutions (solutions from a random player that is not a video game developper).

I don't really like mods. I like playing the official version of a game and I'll try to convince Larian that this could be a great improvement for their Baldur's Gate game(s).

Wait and see on that point. Let's play the game first.



I agree in that yes there are a lot of ifs, however he did say in his own words in an interview that a mod would be "easy". So, if they added it it might not be too terribly hard to do. How to balance that is up to them but doesn't have to be rocket science imo. More enemies generally works well. (Which would simultaneously make level progression about the same.)

I'll keep politely asking for 6 as well. They know a lot of people want it. Those people might not be the EA players but they WILL be paying customers all the same. I want to play the finished game so I wont be playing EA. Like Maximuuus I don't really like mods either. I like options being in the core game itself, mods tend to be glitchy or have other downsides.

Also while it's cool they added those streaming features, for the vast majority of people who aren't streamers.... that's just a feature no one is ever going to use that who knows how much effort and time went in to.
Posted By: Warlocke Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/09/20 06:24 AM
Neither adding the streaming feature nor increasing the party limit are things that will take a lot of time. What would potentially take a lot of time is rebalancing every encounter for a larger party.

I personally would love a 6 character party, so it would be great for me if they did that.

XCom has a 6 soldier squad, sometimes even 7 if you have a guest character, and that always felt like a good number to me.
Posted By: _Vic_ Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/09/20 10:10 AM
It´s far easier to add more enemies to the pod in random generated maps like in Xcom tho.

Sven stated in the interview that the game engine and UI will support 6 characters and we would have mooding tools whenever, but the thing is just adding more characters to the party is not enough. You have to be sure that the dialogues, flags and banters will fire accordingly, the characters do not get stuck in cinematics and possibly tweak the enemy encounters so you do not overwhelm any enemy you find.

Right now we know nothings so.. lots of ifs he he.

At least if they´re going to add more enemies and more difficult encounters in the harder modes maybe you can mod the game to have 6 characters and play in veteran or nightmare and the game would be challenging. Still the question if the extra characters would add something to dialogues and cinematics too.

Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/09/20 02:55 PM
Originally Posted by _Vic_
Still the question if the extra characters would add something to dialogues and cinematics too.

I don't see why this would be the case at all. Why would such things as dialogue and cinematics be dependent on party size? They are things that should be dependent only on each individual character.
Posted By: KillerRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/09/20 08:06 PM
Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by _Vic_
Still the question if the extra characters would add something to dialogues and cinematics too.

I don't see why this would be the case at all. Why would such things as dialogue and cinematics be dependent on party size? They are things that should be dependent only on each individual character.


Good question. We don't really have enough information available to us to answer it. It depends on 1) how they are triggering the banters and conversations and 2) how they have structured those conversations. In BG2 dialogues were based on a timer -- which gave the conversations a spontaneous feel "hey here we are in the street, it just occurred to me" but frustrated people who could never get to the end of the romances because they finished the game so quickly.

SoD used ground triggers -- which made sure that all dialogues fired and eliminated the need to keep the game running just to fire a dialogue but that system had the unintended consequence of lowering the replay value of the game. "Now when I step here, I have this conversation -- same story each time" ToB used a combination of event triggers and timers which was a better than just ground triggers but also made some dialogues predictable. In the infinity engine the number of characters didn't matter -- just which NPCs were present.

I dunno what system BG3 is going to use but if the trigger is linked to party formation or designed to start a specific four way conversation and five people are present that could, maybe, possibly cause problems. It all comes down to if / then statements and how they are designed. So this formation could cause problems. If astarian (player) [variable] showheart [variable] Wyll [variable] Lae'zel then [script var1 = var] + [script var2 = var] + [script var3 = var] + [script var = var ] = [script party disagreement] . NPC 5 wouldn't be included in the formula.
Posted By: Talaverus Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/09/20 10:17 PM
Well, personally, I think with this type of game 4 characters is great. I think 5 would be great as well, but I understand why the developers went with 4--the more characters, the more permutations, etc.

Whether it be a CRPG or a table-top setting, though, I think more than 5 is too many. I say this because beyond 5, the party seems less connected (just feels less "cozy" and unified...personal impression) and combat tends to become a little tedious (CRPG) or boring (table-top, where you have to wait so long for your turn to act in combat).
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Party size discussion - 07/10/20 08:43 PM
Original Title: "My open letter to Larian on party size"


Good evening to all the staff currently working hard at Larian Studios.

I would like to take a few minutes of your time to talk about the current party size in game, my problems with it and also a possible solution for the future.

Note: this section got away from me and was far longer than expected. It is no essential and only helps to know my gaming history and mindset but can otherwise be skipped if you so choose.
But first I would like to give you a quick insight into my history and mindset in the hopes that it will give you a clearer idea of how I am approaching BG3.
I am 34 (born July of 1986) and I had lots of fun playing the original Baldur's Gate and to lesser extent Icewind Dale games as a child, I later played and absolutely adored Dragon Age: Origins, although coming to it with the mindset of it been the spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate I wish to this day that it had a six man party, to me that is it's only real flaw.
When I first heard that BG3 was going to be a reality I was fairly excited, and then upon hearing that it was going to be made by Larian I was apprehensive and then like many others when the first gameplay was shown I didn't like what I saw thinking it looked to much like Divinity: Original Sin, and was pretty much ready to write the game off as not for me as it was too different from what I was familiar with from the original BG games.
My experience with the D:OS games has been one of mostly confusion and I will be the first to admit that I have not given them a proper chance despite having pretty much every Divinity game in my Steam library. I put my bad experience down to not understanding the mechanics and systems of the games and never properly learning them. However since the announcement of BG3 I have gotten into the Fire Emblem games so now I'm more amenable to the idea of BG3 being a turn based game and the more I think about it lately the more I think it might actually be a good thing (in BG & BG2I remember leaving my mages in the back not contributing in most fights to conserve their spell slots, something that doesn't seem to be an issue in your game). And keeping up with the progression and development and have been slowly coming around to your vision of the game, I have bought the game and created a character but that is as far as I have gotten so far so I can come and write this. Character creation was much more straight forward and easier dew to me been familiar with the systems and mechanics of previous D&D titles and I'm looking forward to getting to grips with the game going forward.
I hope that this has helped some of you understand me a little better.


Now for the reason for this post: I would like to advocate for an option to have a six man party.
When forming a party of adventurers in games like this I like a well rounded and balanced party as I would imagine a great many players do as well. You need someone to tank and keep the enemies in place, you need a rouge or thief for picking locks and traps, and for obvious reasons a healer, leaving one slot available which I will most often fill with a spell caster and as such my party composition tends to look very much the same for every playthrough. Increasing the party limit to six not only brings it in line with the original games it also allows the player much more freedom, flexibility and creativity when creating a balanced party. It is my firm belief that a six man party is far superior over a four man party and gives much greater player agency.
And what may at first seem like a contradiction to you I am nod advocating for it to be the default way to play, I understand that you have a vision for the game and I will not argue that you are wrong in it because that is not something I believe in. A four man party or a six man party as a matter of preference and therefore is always the right way to go from each individuals perspective. I know there must be a great many people like me who much prefer a six man party and I would like to offer a suggestion on how you could possibly make both groups of players happy.
For early access and your balancing process keep working on it from the four man party perspective, make the game you have envisioned and focus all of your time up to full release on making it as good as you can, use the early access period to gather the data you need to make the game the way you envision it, make four man the default way to play.
and then when you are ready for full release have an option that can be turned on at the start of a campaign that allows for a six man party, don't spend your time around balancing this option, and when selecting this you can even have a warning that say's the game is not balanced around this size of party so it will probably be easier than intended and as such not compatible with achievements, all I'd like to request for this mode is that dialog sequences and cutscenes account for the increased party size. While mods will probably bring this option to us in the future it would be nice to have an officially supported option to do this implemented by the development staff so we would not have to worry about it not working properly or not playing well with cutscenes and dialog sequences, what I'm advocating for is you to give players the option of party size even if it's not properly balanced to allow for more choice and creativity when choosing who to bring along and so we can have a closer experience to the original games.

I would like to thank anyone who has taken the time to read my long somewhat rambling post and I would encourage anyone who has thoughts on my ideas and suggestions to add to a discussion of why you agree or disagree with me, I will be posting this on the Larian forums, Steam forums and GOG forums to try and get as much impute from as many players as possible to give Larian as much information on this subject as we can, then maybe if enough people want something like this or something similar Larian might consider its implantation when they have finished balancing the game for the full release. Your time is valuable and I thank you all for sharing a little of it with me today.
Posted By: Darth Rauko Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 08:54 PM
+1
Posted By: YzzSC Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 09:14 PM
+1

The party size of 4 restricts the player so heavily that you more or less will end up with a cookie cutter lineup instead of being able to be more creative with it. Just because you want to cover your basics.
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:04 PM
By far the most common suggestion I'm seeing on these boards. Honestly I feel like the reasoning for this should be obvious and has been stated in every post that has suggested it. It has also been said repeatedly since the official announcement. Its not some out of left field suggestion it is an argument that has been repeated many many times and acknowledged by Swen in interview and even though I believe he said larger party size was something they were considering (I might be wrong there, but i believe it was something he mentioned after people kept saying to him about a larger party) it seems they didn't consider hard enough and I would hazard a guess that the reason the party size stayed at four was because a larger party meant more companions needed to be made and that drives up cost and dev time exponentially if you want the companions to be highly interactive with what's going on. Too many cRPG devs see larger parties as a cool extra that they can do if they have time to make it work after getting the core experience sorted. In fact it is a necessary part of the core experience when using a well defined class based system as the player needs to cover the basic roles and have a slot or two for the RP focused character, or interesting character that doesn't fit into a specific role particularly well (eg. with 4 slots it will never.... never be worth it to take a great old one warlock as their in PnP is essentially RP sloot, fun but not so good in a fight). The reason the 4 man party works in tabletop is because you have a DM to tailor the experience to suit your slightly off-kilter party composition, not to mention that most PnP is considerably lighter on combat than most cRPGs
Posted By: WarBaby2 Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:06 PM
Originally Posted by YzzSC
+1

The party size of 4 restricts the player so heavily that you more or less will end up with a cookie cutter lineup instead of being able to be more creative with it. Just because you want to cover your basics.


+1

This. The only way for that not to happen right now, would be to constantly restricted the player from using certain characters for story reasons, which would be horrible...
Posted By: YzzSC Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:09 PM
Originally Posted by Malkie
The reason the 4 man party works in tabletop is because you have a DM to tailor the experience to suit your slightly off-kilter party composition.


Or the DM just adds a NPC or two to help you out. Great way for the DM to interject themselves in the party banter laugh
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:15 PM
At this point I honestly feel like one of these threads should be stickied so that people can just add their +1. Currently there are a ton of separate threads so its hard to see how much support this suggestion actually has.

As I said when i made a thread suggesting it though, to make it a 5 man party you would really need about twice as many companions as there currently is in game.
Posted By: eidopans Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:17 PM
I totally agree with that
even 5 Player Party would be good

4 Players is just lacking and locking us into specific roles
Posted By: Skarpharald Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:36 PM
Gonna be the evil guy for this thread.

I like the 4 man party. The limitation makes you think of more creative solutions to problems and perhaps your own unique character. Want to fill that rogue role but like rangers too? Play an urban ranger. It's flavourful as well. Wizards can open locks too.

In battle, you have to use your classes to their full extent. No party member is just there as a skill monkey. Makes you chosen companions matter more since you really depend on them for success. The cleric is not a healbot, it is a Cleric with a capital C.
Posted By: Stabbey Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:43 PM
I would definitely like at least 5 party members.

However, Larian seems to believe that more than four people would be too cumbersome and create excessively long combat. I unfortunately don't think they're going to budge on that one. But you can try.
Posted By: Earthsong Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:45 PM
+1
It'd be good to have options besides Tank, Mage, Rogue, Healer.
5 or 6 man allows for bards, rangers, etc.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:49 PM
Originally Posted by Malkie
At this point I honestly feel like one of these threads should be stickied so that people can just add their +1. Currently there are a ton of separate threads so its hard to see how much support this suggestion actually has.

As I said when i made a thread suggesting it though, to make it a 5 man party you would really need about twice as many companions as there currently is in game.

I've been seeing threads like this since the game was first announced and the party size was confirmed, but not many, if any explained the writers view point on why it was something they wanted, so I have tried to approach this in a constructive manor, explain why I think the larger party can be a benefit and offer up a solution, As for adding more companions I know more are planned but I'm not sure how many more are coming.
Originally Posted by eidopans
I totally agree with that
even 5 Player Party would be good

4 Players is just lacking and locking us into specific roles

While five people in the party would be better than four I still believe that six is kind of the perfect number. My favourite memory from BG1 is the end dungeon on the way to fight Saravok, I had 2 front line fighters and a cleric holding the line against a hoard of enemies while my rouge archer and two mages attacked from behind the front line, it felt so epic to set up a formation and use tactics to face of against overwhelming odds and I just don't see that sort of scenario happening with only four party members.
Posted By: vberge Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:50 PM
I really really want this suggestion to go through. I want a party of 1 Tank (fighter or paladin), 1 cleric, 1 charisma caster(bard, sorc or warlock), 1 int caster, 1 rogue and 1 fun character (druid, barb, ranger).

4 just has too many limitation and I feel like I am forced into tank, healer caster and a rogue that kind of has to be arcane trickster at that point.This leaves no room for fun party compositions.

Please please please reconsider the 4 man limit.
Posted By: WarBaby2 Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:52 PM
Originally Posted by Stabbey
I would definitely like at least 5 party members.

However, Larian seems to believe that more than four people would be too cumbersome and create excessively long combat. I unfortunately don't think they're going to budge on that one. But you can try.



It's round based combat, so against more then say, 5 enemies, combat will be cumbersome/long no matter what...
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:56 PM
Originally Posted by Skarpharald
Gonna be the evil guy for this thread.

I like the 4 man party. The limitation makes you think of more creative solutions to problems and perhaps your own unique character. Want to fill that rogue role but like rangers too? Play an urban ranger. It's flavourful as well. Wizards can open locks too.

In battle, you have to use your classes to their full extent. No party member is just there as a skill monkey. Makes you chosen companions matter more since you really depend on them for success. The cleric is not a healbot, it is a Cleric with a capital C.

Please do, the more oppions the better, just because I prefer a six man party I'm not arrogant enough to say it's the only way to play. I appreciate that a lot of people like the challenge and limits that a reduced party size can bring, solo BG runs have been a thing since it was first released. For those that like doing solo runs that function ability will be built into the game by default since you won't have to recute anyone to your party if you so choose and player like you who like a four player party are covered as well, but people like me who like a bigger party size will be at the mercy of mods and modders and there ability to keep it up to date and compatible with elements of the game that may conflict with it, whereas something built into the game by Larian themselves will bee much more reliable.
Originally Posted by Stabbey
I would definitely like at least 5 party members.

However, Larian seems to believe that more than four people would be too cumbersome and create excessively long combat. I unfortunately don't think they're going to budge on that one. But you can try.

I do want them to make the game the way that they want to and balance it around their vision, all I ask is that they give players the option even if it comes with warnings that it will reduce difficulty and potentially break the ballance of the game and therefore achievements will be disabled.
Posted By: wassindabox Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 10:58 PM
+1 !

I wanna be able to play with most of my friends, especially if DM mode becomes a thing.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:00 PM
Originally Posted by vberge
I really really want this suggestion to go through. I want a party of 1 Tank (fighter or paladin), 1 cleric, 1 charisma caster(bard, sorc or warlock), 1 int caster, 1 rogue and 1 fun character (druid, barb, ranger).

4 just has too many limitation and I feel like I am forced into tank, healer caster and a rogue that kind of has to be arcane trickster at that point.This leaves no room for fun party compositions.

Please please please reconsider the 4 man limit.

Agreed, while not exactly comparable in Dragon Age: Origins I often found myself wanting to take a couple of extra companions along with me and feeling pigeonholed into taking certain party members along rather than playing with the team I want to take.
Posted By: Gabriel Farishta Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:04 PM
+1

I do understand this is not possible right now, espeially given there are only 5 companions available in single-player mode at the moment. But I do hope that as Larian adds more companions to the roster, the party size in later EA versions (or even just the completed game) can be bumped up to 5 or 6 members. Even if this is not implemented in multi-player mode, or even if it is left as an option that can be chosen at the start of the campaign.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:05 PM
Edit: double post, removed.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:08 PM
Originally Posted by Gabriel Farishta
+1

I do understand this is not possible right now, espeially given there are only 5 companions available in single-player mode at the moment. But I do hope that as Larian adds more companions to the roster, the party size in later EA versions (or even just the completed game) can be bumped up to 5 or 6 members. Even if this is not implemented in multi-player mode, or even if it is left as an option that can be chosen at the start of the campaign.

With the player created character and the five companions they actually have a full party of six ready to go, but I would prefer that they focus on finishing and balancing the game for now and add the option closer to a full release.
Posted By: Dorntdc Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:24 PM
+1

Minsc and Boo disapprove of 4 people in a party. They consider it evil and they will kick your butt @Larian.
Posted By: Alodar Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:26 PM
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.
Not only would you be adding 2 more bodies on the players side you would need to add additional monsters to make combats challenging.
Six players could mean as many as 6 more turns for combats and that's just too much.

You really need to explore the backgrounds in 5E. A dedicated thief is no longer necessary. With the Urchin background you gain proficiency in both stealth and Sleight of hand which allows any Dex character to sneak and pick locks/remove traps.

There are lots of options, and the smaller the party the more re-playable the game and the more strategy you have to employ.

There has been no combat in Early Access that I've thought that I needed two more characters to be more effective


Six players would slow down combat, decrease re-playablity, and lessen the strategy required to succeed.
That's a hard no from me.

(If it's something you folks truly want you can Mod it in after full release.)
Posted By: WarBaby2 Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:28 PM
Originally Posted by Alodar
Six players would slow down combat.


It's round based combat, it will be slow anyhow... just saying.
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:33 PM
I would like it too, but Larian seems adamant on this. They stated in some interview or panel that they left room for more for modders to add more like it was for OS2, so I doubt they themselves are going to change.
Posted By: Alodar Re: Party Size Discussion - 07/10/20 11:37 PM
Originally Posted by WarBaby2
Originally Posted by Alodar
Six players would slow down combat.


It's round based combat, it will be slow anyhow... just saying.


Turn based combat is fine, it only starts to slow down when there are too many participants.
Posted By: Bokkz Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 12:03 AM
+1

I want my 6 slot full custom party.
And please don't make me run 6 game clients to achieve that again.

There would be nothing stopping anyone from making a 4 slot (or solo) run. I definitely approve and endorse challenge runs.
But right now we are being stopped from having a proper party and it does affect the complexity of encounters and gameplay negatively. I am already bored of random NPCs acting as hit point buffers. Why can't i bring my own ?

Look at it this way: If you removed 2 pieces from a chess board you would remove millions of possible moves. If you remove 1/3 of the pieces the game becomes trivial.
I don't want to play tic-tac-toe. I want there to be serious strategy involved in a TURN BASED GAME mind you.
You should take a page out of the book of the Sword Coast Stratagems mod for BG2 which increased the difficulty by adding missing spells and ability (and thereby moves and strategies) instead of cranking up the damage by 200% Bethesda style.

If you wanna take the crown from BG2 there is no way around a 6 slot party. Period.
Posted By: Shanks Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 12:23 AM
I actually really like a party of four. I don't disagree that it has its faults, but I have always been happy in video games, and tabletop games, with a party of 4.

I imagine this will be one of the first things the modding community does though, if DOS2 is any indication.
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 12:39 AM
Originally Posted by Skarpharald
Gonna be the evil guy for this thread.

I like the 4 man party. The limitation makes you think of more creative solutions to problems and perhaps your own unique character. Want to fill that rogue role but like rangers too? Play an urban ranger. It's flavourful as well. Wizards can open locks too.

In battle, you have to use your classes to their full extent. No party member is just there as a skill monkey. Makes you chosen companions matter more since you really depend on them for success. The cleric is not a healbot, it is a Cleric with a capital C.


I wouldn't say its evil, just an opinion, kind of like flat earthers are entitled to their opinion even in the face of all logic.

The problem here is that while on the surface your argument sounds reasonable enough, like flat earthers, when you look at the details it falls apart. What really ends up happening is either you create artificial difficulty increase by making your party really bad at handling entire aspects of the game (one of the two main attractions to solo runs in BG 1 and 2, which I have also enjoyed once or twice) or you end up building several of your characters to multi-role, which in higher difficulty play can often be a big problem without a DM helping you to do this. As I've said before this is why the wonky 4 man parties work in PnP, or even 2 or 3 man parties but not on pc or consoles where combat is much much more common. Without that outside intervention, you will encounter things you're party just cant handle without resorting to cheese mechanics (because you have no real frontliner your "interesting rogue" frontliner or whatever fun build you do gets annihilated because it is just sub par), much like you had to on solo runs in BG1 and 2 even though multi-role was much more effective due to differing xp rates between a 6 man party and a solo run as well the xp rates of different classes. Overlapping traps, resting every fight, stacking potions, dragging enemies to other encounters that interfere with each other. These "interesting solutions" more often than not, tend to be abusing mechanics that were never meant to be used in that way.

People complain about cheese being optional (I have no issue with optional cheese or sometimes making the game purposely harder because it is exactly that, optional), yet advocate for it being a necessity if you don't want to use the 4 "must have" classes.

With 4 characters you either run the standard setup (frontliner, rogue, wiz/sorc, cleric/druid) or artificially boost the difficulty, that's fine if you want that difficulty, or if you want to rely on kiting enemies or cheesing broken mechanics. Personally, I don't necessarily want that, I might choose to at some point, but I know I WANT to play with a different setup, i like warlocks, bards and rangers. Of course, with a 5 or 6 man party, there's nothing to stop a player from artificially boosting difficulty by taking 4 instead, leaving the other slots empty.

You say wizards can open locks too, this is advocating for resting far more than intended, because your using spells to open locks, which is abusing rest mechanics aka cheesing that aspect of the game.
Cleric isn't just a heal bot he's a cleric with a capital C, i don't think i've seen a healbot cleric in 5e at all, i know it can be done, but its not needed because WotC went out of their way to remove the healbot requirement and instead make it viable to act as proper support caster handling buffs and debuffs, healing is only part of their job for most cleric, for many it isn't part of it at all and is a role that can be filled by potions and resting The thing you need and miss most without a cleric is utility spells. In the standard setup I mention above, cleric/druid is the most flexible slot, but if you take bard instead, its gonna be harder.
You don't need a rogue to handle traps, just buff your fighter and have them run over them all then rest and rebuff for the encounter. Cheesing.
Avoid fights by having a character really good at deception, intimidation and illusions to bypass encounters or whatever, ok, sure, so umm, what about the fights you can't avoid? Which are going to be much more frequent than PnP because in reality there's no way every encounter is going to be setup to handle that kind of input, the amount of workload increase for devs to make this work in a balanced fashion is simply staggering and unrealistic to expect. There is no DM in a singleplayer cRPG campaign, Deus Ex tried this approach and managed it pretty well, but they had a fraction of the potential approaches to consider compared to D&D.
What about luring the enemies in that encounter back to that big trap i encountered earlier, well that trap was put there for me and my party and i'm pretty sure there was no thought put into the notion that players would lure their enemies down a hallway for 5 mins so they could "inventively use the environment" when the devs designed the encounter. I'm sure all those enemies dying on top of the trap they supposedly laid because the ai isn't setup to to work with it. Again, this is cheesing the game.
What if my rogue lays out a massive line of traps and i pull all the enemies through them all. I know it only kills one but when they catch up with me the rest just reset because its encounter can only be dragged so far before they stop chasing. Again this is cheesing.

"Inventive solutions" are 9 times out of 10, cheesing the game in some way, so the idea that a smaller party forces you to come up with inventive solutions, is forcing people to cheese in some way or another.

If you were to try and make the "interesting and different approach, inventive solutions" thing work in a singleplayer campaign without cheesing or live manipulation (aka a DM) of circumstances and events, it would be a truly colossal undertaking for a cRPG dev. Very few cRPGs have aimed for larger party sizes, yet despite all the years since BG2 and ToB, despite all the well written plots and dialogues of so many that have come since, they are still considered some of the best RPGs (not even cRPGs) of all time and one of the large contributors to that, is the vast array of companions and the larger party size which lets players experiment massively with their approach to the game. Bigger party means more player agency.

The freedom to experiment and the impact that party size has on that specific aspect of gameplay is one of the major reasons why BG1 and 2 are so highly regarded compared to their fancier, more modern competitors. I can name quite a few cRPGs that when looked at honestly are better written, better voice acted, more visually impressive, and still less beloved than Baldur's Gate and only difference remaining, is the party systems they used and the resultant difference in player freedom and agency.

TLDR: The idea that a smaller party is better in a game with well defined classes, is nonsense plain and simple.
Posted By: Bokkz Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 12:44 AM
Increasing party size per mod doesn't do anything but make the game easier. The encounters need to be improved or otherwise it's pointless.
So far the game is super easy anyway with 4. They'll have to add some challenge eventually. Might as well do it right.
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:37 AM
Originally Posted by Alodar
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.
Not only would you be adding 2 more bodies on the players side you would need to add additional monsters to make combats challenging.
Six players could mean as many as 6 more turns for combats and that's just too much.


Nonsense, this is the entire reason encounter difficulty exists in 5e. This is the opinion of DM that doesn't know how to tailor encounters to a party.

Originally Posted by Alodar
You really need to explore the backgrounds in 5E. A dedicated thief is no longer necessary. With the Urchin background you gain proficiency in both stealth and Sleight of hand which allows any Dex character to sneak and pick locks/remove traps.


True to an extent, however proficiency and expertise are different things, and is not allowing for party diversity instead your just making a sub par rogue crossed with a sub par something else. Background don't fix this.

Originally Posted by Alodar
There are lots of options, and the smaller the party the more re-playable the game and the more strategy you have to employ.


So less party flexibility and player agency means more replay value? That's not how that works. Go read my lengthy post above where I talk about the notion of "more strategy and inventive solutions" with smaller party, 9 times out of 10 this means go find your own favourite way to cheese. Your argument for replay value works in a system without classes, not one with rigid class progression, smaller party means less flexibility, in turn this means each playthrough has a much more cookie cutter party composition which results in much less replay value. Your dialogue and decisions might differ from one playthrough to the next, but that is only one aspect of replay value, the more places you provide the opportunity for variety the more your overall variety grows exponentially. Akin to RNG layering, each layer provides exponential growth in possible outcomes. To make your claim of replay value is to show a staggering lack of understanding of how mathematics applies to the implementation, of course you make other mathematically anomalous claims in your post but i'll get to that.

Originally Posted by Alodar
There has been no combat in Early Access that I've thought that I needed two more characters to be more effective


This has nothing to do with why people want more party members. Its about player agency and replay value, about having variety in your playthroughs.

Originally Posted by Alodar
Six players would slow down combat, decrease re-playablity, and lessen the strategy required to succeed.
That's a hard no from me.


Extra characters doesn't slow down combat, you as a player are still giving the same rate of input, on a typical turn your input vs ai input will remain at similar ratios, or at even higher ratios because as i said above, if an encounter is properly balanced, you don't need far more enemies, you need more appropriate enemies. So in most encounters you would be increasing the amount of time you are acting compared to the amount of time enemies are acting as such each turn might involve more units going, so each turn is longer, but your are providing relatively more input, as such combat feels faster, not slower, this isn't PnP where each character is controlled by a different player thinking about what they want their character to do and how they can optimally get through their priority list of moves, you are one person thinking about the total effective approach of your entire party. This is basic mathematics and any attempt to refute it only demonstrates a lack of understanding on how a multiplayer pen and paper game translates to a singleplayer computer game. The speed of combat is not equivalent to the length of an individual turn it is about how much input you are providing compared to how long you spend not giving input.

Faster feeling combat means more appealing combat in general, which helps re-playability you are right in saying that, you are absolutely wrong in your understanding of how combat speed translates to a game setting.

As for lessening strategy, this is a nonsense claim built on the idea that more party members mean easier encounter because the game is balanced for 4. Again, this is not what people are asking for, they are asking for it to be balanced around 5 or 6 characters, typically this means more challenging enemies which means an increase in strategic difficulty, not just allowing more characters without adjusting encounters. As an example, a well designed boss encounter vs a mob of cannon fodder, the boss will require more thought every single time. Better enemies and encounter area design is far more effective at providing challenge than simply adding more enemies.

Originally Posted by Alodar

(If it's something you folks truly want you can Mod it in after full release.)



This would be a huge mod project, attempting this without a proper dev team would be a really, really long haul. If you want to play with fewer characters, you don't even need to mod it after, you can just do it and if its too difficult, you can mod a change of xp rate much, much more easily. Once again this isn't some random suggestion out of left field, this has been stated as an expected aspect of any spiritual successor, never mind sequel, to the BG series since ToB rounded out the original story. Long, long before the announcement from Larian that BG3 was coming, and it was brought up, many many times throughout development, it was mentioned in initial replies and reactions to the announcement of BG3. It was well known and understood that a 4 man party was only going to lead to complaints and for very legitimate reasons. Now if you would like to debate further I would suggest doing so with an actual understanding of what your claiming. This was a purposeful design decision by Larian, made in the full knowledge that it would not be well received, they're attempting to balance the game around 4 characters, it would be much easier and better to adjust those balance sliders while they are adjusting them anyway, not to mention when you consider party variety from one playthrough to the next, it would be easier to balance for 5 than 4 given the massive power discrepancy between the the standard 4 man party and the many approaches to the non standard. As it stands, the only way Larian makes the non cookie-cutter party comps viable is by making the game too easy for a standard balanced 4 man party, and given the mechanics of low level D&D 5E, that difference will be very noticeable at times.

The difficulty argument works for free-form character building like DOS2 had, not for a rigid class system.
Posted By: BrianDavion Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:21 AM
I think a party size of 5 would be good. cover the essentials while allowing a wild card
Posted By: Shuffington Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:28 AM
YES! I completely agree. 4 man party is just too small imo, especially when the characters are this compelling and interesting. Please, Larian, give us a larger party.
Posted By: CamKitty Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:30 AM
Also let me make all the characters in my party, since you are bound and determined to make all your characters edgy jerks to be around. I'd rather not thanks
Posted By: Rubbermate Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 05:42 AM
+1

wholeheartedly agree
Posted By: Tzelanit Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 05:45 AM
I love the slimmed down 4-player party. I despise the idea of having every available option to handle any situation that may come my way.
I want to have to make an intelligent and involved decision on how I'm going to round out my party for whatever my intention is during that playthrough.
I don't need the "perfect" game where I pass every skill check, unlock every door, or persuade every NPC successfully.
I enjoy playing through a dense game like this multiple times to see how different setups and characters react to each other.
I feel as though being forced to have access to that all at once would somehow cheapen the experience for me.
I'd likely intentionally make two characters as useless as possible or keep them at my camp so that I wasn't provided so many options.
Posted By: lanceromancer Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 06:59 AM
Definitely agree with larger party size options.

I wonder if multiplayer limitations is the main concern? If so, I think a 4-player multiplayer limit would be understandable.
Posted By: Pantoufle Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:06 AM
+1 too

Posted By: SpawnLQ Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:32 AM
You guys wanting 6 chars are looking at this all wrong. You seem to be basing the need for a 6 char balanced party on older games based on older versions of DnD where a tank and healer were crucial to party survival. 5e classes are more customizable and more self sufficient. You can easily run a group of 4 with no dedicated healer. Self heal options, potions, food heals, etc. are easy to come by. Anyone can attempt any skills, and can be proficient in them depending on background including lockpicking. Even without proficiency you only lose like +2 in the early levels, not a big loss.

I have no tank, just dps fighters (GWF EK and BM Dual Wielder), and the cleric has only used her heal spell like twice when i was level 1. I used the rogue primarily for sneak attack as it seems all of my characters dont really have much trouble picking locks, then swapped him for dual wielding battle master who just provides more toughness and dps overall. I have not had any issues swapping out specific role members just trying a different party makeup as i still dominate pretty well in battle and handle anything else outside of combat just fine.

Pretty much any combination of 4 is totally doable guys even if you need to be a little tactical about it smile
Posted By: GodfatherPlunger Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:40 AM
Not sure about 6 tbh. A party of 5 seems like the right size. 4 is very constricting I have to agree. I was actually completely suprised when I wanted to recruit lae zel and she told me I had to ditch one of my other 3 companions !
Posted By: Riandor Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:50 AM
I have no issue with a core 4 person party as long as I can hire additional mercs, tame beasts, have NPC’s for specific quests join, etc...

There are multiple ways to cook a goose and whilst I love the 6 man party aspect of BG1&2, I believe the focus here is on the story and interaction of the core party. So that’s fine by me, as long as I can artificially inflate the group for those epic moments, or in order to have a weird and colourful group composition.

I don’t need 6 heavy story based characters in my party at all times, I mean I’m not against it, but you do build in more replayability by limiting which of the story characters you have taken this playthrough.

Again, I’m not anti 6, I just think this discussion is perhaps too focused on it being black or white, where I do think Larian is considering some middle ground and considering the multiplayer aspect.

Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:53 AM
+1
We need one more slot for party versality reason, above 4 covering main roles. And I would also like to note that this will reduce RNG dependence.
Posted By: Raven_313 Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 08:02 AM
I have been playing Dragon Age Origins and I disagree.

4 players is ideal, especially for challenge.

Plus perhaps a pet and summon.

Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 08:06 AM
Originally Posted by Raven_313
I have been playing Dragon Age Origins and I disagree.

4 players is ideal, especially for challenge.

Plus perhaps a pet and summon.


bad example, DAO had only 3 classes
Posted By: Raven_313 Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 08:14 AM
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Raven_313
I have been playing Dragon Age Origins and I disagree.

4 players is ideal, especially for challenge.

Plus perhaps a pet and summon.


bad example, DAO had only 3 classes


A lot more with specializations, but yes only 3 base classes.

Plenty of companions too.
Posted By: Pantoufle Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 08:14 AM
Originally Posted by Riandor
I have no issue with a core 4 person party as long as I can hire additional mercs, tame beasts, have NPC’s for specific quests join, etc...



If we have enough free slot to hire merc or beast, I prefer to choose a "real" companion.
For me, the real pleasure in this king of game is to create a party I love and to interact with them. Discussion, banters, conflict ...
Mercenaries doesn't have a personality, they are boring ^^

Posted By: Rulin Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 08:40 AM
how about multiple parties? I always wondered why you cannot control your companions in different groups. One is in a dungeon while the other one is defending the "base" or visiting a king etc. Would make so much more sense than letting them rot in the camp all day.
Posted By: Riandor Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 09:08 AM
Originally Posted by Pantoufle
Originally Posted by Riandor
I have no issue with a core 4 person party as long as I can hire additional mercs, tame beasts, have NPC’s for specific quests join, etc...



If we have enough free slot to hire merc or beast, I prefer to choose a "real" companion.
For me, the real pleasure in this king of game is to create a party I love and to interact with them. Discussion, banters, conflict ...
Mercenaries doesn't have a personality, they are boring ^^


You have that in spades with the party of 4, Larian are clearly very focussed on the party interaction, but does adding 2 more to that dynamic warrant the extra complexities? Or would we end up with random conversations out of nowhere that have little bearing on what has happened before? It’s certainly easier to tailor the experience more with a firmed up group at a certain stage. I would rather have a more interesting party story where each conversation is relevant and growing to how I play, rather than a larger group with odd interactions that plague other larger group rpgs for the sake of banter.

Don’t get me wrong, I like a party of 6, but there is always 1 or 2 within such a party that get the short straw. Just playing a little devils advocate here.

Posted By: Snakeox Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 09:56 AM
Aren't you guys already tired of managing the jump of 4 characters ? You want more ? Hell no.

Also, 4 characters is the "optimal" party size in dnd 5e I believe as it is how most stuff is balanced so I guess that's why Larian rolled with it. Remember that you get pets and familiar to manage for certain classes also.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:08 AM
+1 I definitely need a party size of 6.

And I think that the game is nearly already balance for it...
I won't spoil here but since the beginning, I'm fighting a lot and there are many "huge" battles (I'm inside the goblin camp).

I can deal with those battles with a group of 4 but that's not always easy.
I like difficulty but I think some don't.

=> More party members mean less difficulty for this "normal game mode".

Another thing in those huge combat is how slow they are...
Not because of TB or because of D&D but when you face 15 ennemies and have to attack at least 4 times or more each one of them (considering all the miss), that's sooo slow.

=> More companions don't mean slower, but FASTER combat because you can kill your ennemies in less turns.

I also notice that there is the EXACT place for 2 more potraits... I hope.
Posted By: Pantoufle Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:16 AM
Originally Posted by Riandor
I would rather have a more interesting party story where each conversation is relevant and growing to how I play, rather than a larger group with odd interactions that plague other larger group rpgs for the sake of banter.

Don’t get me wrong, I like a party of 6, but there is always 1 or 2 within such a party that get the short straw. Just playing a little devils advocate here.



Indeed, but I still hope to have 6 party members and keep a relevant conversation. Please, let me dream laugh
Posted By: Tomaface Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:54 AM
+1
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 11:03 AM
The main thing I dislike about limited party size is how it makes party composition incredibly boring. You are excluding a lot of accessory flavor because you want at least to cover a minimum of variety in your limited amount of slots.


The irony of the entire situation is that if they addressed both the "party size" concern and my other grief about how the party controls (dedicated thread here: http://forums.larian.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=679414#Post679414 )
they'd be automatically defusing 90% of the complaints about this not feeling like a proper Baldur's Gate. They just don't seem to care much about that.


Well, we are probably wasting our breath here, since Larian, with all its upsides, is almost NOTORIOUS for being stubborn and sticking to their poor design decision no matter how much feedback they get against it (the obscene randomized loot system of their past games or the massively criticized armor system in DOS 2 come to mind).

Posted By: Slapstick Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 11:30 AM
I'd rather not have a larger party because combat takes long enough as it is.
Fewer party members and fewer opponents means less time doing combat = more playthroughs = being able to bring along a different set of companions on the 2nd run rather than running with the same guys because I had room for everyone the first time.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 11:44 AM
Originally Posted by Slapstick
I'd rather not have a larger party because combat takes long enough as it is.
Fewer party members and fewer opponents means less time doing combat = more playthroughs = being able to bring along a different set of companions on the 2nd run rather than running with the same guys because I had room for everyone the first time.

Not a single claim in this post is based on reality, especially looking at other games that did it (like the recent Kingmaker mod/addition to make the game turn-based).

For one, no one is asking for "more enemies". They could just be the same amount and slightly stronger.
Second, more party members make "controlling and cleaning up the area" quicker.
Third, the "speed" of combat is a relative and fairly low priority concern in a game where each encounter is an unique, non-repeatable event.
Fourth, "being able to bring every time a different set of companions" doesn't work that well when you want to cover certain almost-fundamental roles and your slots are very limited to begin with.



Posted By: WurstBane Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 12:08 PM
+1
Posted By: endolex Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 12:30 PM
As someone who very much enjoyed BG2 party banter (and how companions inserted themselves into many dialogues), I do hope for a larger party size, at least as an option to be modded in. smile
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 12:37 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco


Well, we are probably wasting our breath here, since Larian, with all its upsides, is almost NOTORIOUS for being stubborn and sticking to their poor design decision no matter how much feedback they get against it (the obscene randomized loot system of their past games or the massively criticized armor system in DOS 2 come to mind).


I think we all must focus to push hard on Larian to make that changes(like when community give group initiative feedback), because party size is the basis for all gameplay balance. If these changes are not be made as early as possible, they will never be done at all.
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:02 PM
Adding my voice to this thread, a 4 man party feels so much more restricted when choosing companions so you always have: 1 Melee/Tank, 1 Support/Healer, 1 Rogue (stealth and lockpick) and to wrap up a Magic Caster (which will usually be a wizard because of extended spell list, why would you take a warlock over a Wizard in DnD late game???).

D&D also has 12 Vanilla classes (not counting Artificers) which means being able to have only 4 of those 12 (33%) you won't get as much versatility or adaptability if you cold have a 6 man party (50% of those classes could be in the party). By the way, how are you going to balance a party in the future when more classes comes around like Sorcerers, Bards, Monks, Barbarians and Paladins? Who are you gonna cut off to add someone new and still feel like you have some balance?

In BG1 and BG2 I always hated to ask a companion to leave so I could add a new one, and only did so if they were someone I liked better or had an amazing companion quest I had to do before getting my "dream party" back. I never thought of those companions as disposables tools to do a job and for me Imoen and Misc would always be in the group no matter what, so at least 3 spots on those 6 man parties were already locked on (counting my OC as well).

Therefore a 6 man party seems much more immersive and fun as well as adaptable than going back and forth picking a mule to do a job and then dumping it back to camp when said job is done, which looks like where BG3 is going since you can ask a companion to go back to your camp and just collect dust until you need them for a job or to further down their quest.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:40 PM
Originally Posted by arion

I think we all must focus to push hard on Larian to make that changes(like when community give group initiative feedback), because party size is the basis for all gameplay balance. If these changes are not be made as early as possible, they will never be done at all.

I don0't disagree and that's why I'm contributing to the thread.
Just saying that Larian is notorious for this trend of "sticking to their vision no matter what" (which could be almost commendable in other circumstances) and only later admitting "Well, yeah, that was bad and everyone knew it and pointed it to us, but what is done is done".
Posted By: Alodar Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:42 PM
Originally Posted by Malkie
Originally Posted by Alodar
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.
Not only would you be adding 2 more bodies on the players side you would need to add additional monsters to make combats challenging.
Six players could mean as many as 6 more turns for combats and that's just too much.


Nonsense, this is the entire reason encounter difficulty exists in 5e. This is the opinion of DM that doesn't know how to tailor encounters to a party.


I hope the irony of you referring to 5E's encounter balance system is not lost on you. 5E Challenge Rating is based off a party of 4 ...

It should be obvious that a combat balanced for a party of 6 takes longer than a combat balanced for a party of 4 even with the same number of bad guys.
You are taking 2 extra turns every round compared to the party of four.

If you are facing more bad guys to challenge your increased numbers the bad guys turns will take longer as well.

There is no situation where combat balanced for a party of 6 doesn't take longer than combat balanced for a party of 4.


Originally Posted by Alodar
You really need to explore the backgrounds in 5E. A dedicated thief is no longer necessary. With the Urchin background you gain proficiency in both stealth and Sleight of hand which allows any Dex character to sneak and pick locks/remove traps.


Originally Posted by Malkie
True to an extent, however proficiency and expertise are different things, and is not allowing for party diversity instead your just making a sub par rogue crossed with a sub par something else. Background don't fix this.


Except the character you add the Urchin background isn't sub-par at anything. Any Dex based character can have the Urchin background, lose nothing from their main class and still be able to lock pick and go stealthy when needed

Originally Posted by Alodar
There are lots of options, and the smaller the party the more re-playable the game and the more strategy you have to employ.


Originally Posted by Malkie
So less party flexibility and player agency means more replay value? That's not how that works. Go read my lengthy post above where I talk about the notion of "more strategy and inventive solutions" with smaller party, 9 times out of 10 this means go find your own favourite way to cheese.

Just so you are aware pulling statistics out of your butt is a common tactic for folks who don't have a viable argument.
Players who want to cheese encounters will cheese encounters. Here's a site that lists many of the cheese tactics players used in BG2 (https://sorcerers.net/Games/BG2/SpellsReference/Stuff/Cheese.htm) which should be noted had a party of 6.

Originally Posted by Malkie

Your argument for replay value works in a system without classes, not one with rigid class progression, smaller party means less flexibility, in turn this means each playthrough has a much more cookie cutter party composition which results in much less replay value. Your dialogue and decisions might differ from one playthrough to the next, but that is only one aspect of replay value, the more places you provide the opportunity for variety the more your overall variety grows exponentially. Akin to RNG layering, each layer provides exponential growth in possible outcomes. To make your claim of replay value is to show a staggering lack of understanding of how mathematics applies to the implementation, of course you make other mathematically anomalous claims in your post but i'll get to that.

So many accusations and so wrong.

Let's assume 5 in game companions ( B,C,D,E,F) and a party of 6. (You're playing character A)
First time through your party is A,B,C,D,E,F
Next time through your party is A,B,C,D,E,F
Third time through your party is A,B,C,D,E,F

Conversations don't change. Tactics don't change. The only variety is your character.

Same scenario, but party of 4:
First time through your party is A,B,C,D
Next time through your party is A,C,E,F
Third time through your party is A,B,D,F


Conversations are different, Tactics are different. By definition more variety.
If you do the math, which you seem to think you're an expert in, 6 choose 4 has 15 different combinations. 6 choose 6 has 1 combination.
15>1


Originally Posted by Alodar
There has been no combat in Early Access that I've thought that I needed two more characters to be more effective


Originally Posted by Malkie
This has nothing to do with why people want more party members. Its about player agency and replay value, about having variety in your playthroughs.

As shown above a party of 4 has more replay value and more variety.

Originally Posted by Alodar
Six players would slow down combat, decrease re-playablity, and lessen the strategy required to succeed.
That's a hard no from me.


Nothing you've said disputes any of these points.
Larian has already said that they have not hard coded the party size and that those who wish to Mod a party of 6 are free to do so after full release.



Posted By: eventHandler Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:43 PM
I wouldn't mind if you could bring 2 more people as "non-combat support" who stay out of combat, if they are worried about combat being too slow and tedious with six party members. I just want them around for dialog. I agree it is tedious having too many, so I'm already not using familiars since they almost add nothing without being able to provide the help action and take another spacebar to cycle every round. But I do want those extra dialog reactions to scenes from having the "right" companions with you.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:47 PM
I agree six is the ideal party size for a cRPG like this game. Four is way too small. And it should not be necessary to rely on a modder to give us this, as it should be an option built into the game.
Posted By: Volker_IRL Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:48 PM
+1

This is an extremely valid criticism, I'm playing as a wizard and as it is now I can only see my party consisting of the same people. Lae'zel as the tank, Shadowheart as the support, my character as the spellcaster, and then the fourth slot being swapped between Wyll or Astarion as need be. Which leaves Gale on the side lines which is less than ideal cause I rather like Gale.
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 01:53 PM
Originally Posted by Tzelanit
I love the slimmed down 4-player party. I despise the idea of having every available option to handle any situation that may come my way.
I want to have to make an intelligent and involved decision on how I'm going to round out my party for whatever my intention is during that playthrough.
I don't need the "perfect" game where I pass every skill check, unlock every door, or persuade every NPC successfully.
I enjoy playing through a dense game like this multiple times to see how different setups and characters react to each other.
I feel as though being forced to have access to that all at once would somehow cheapen the experience for me.
I'd likely intentionally make two characters as useless as possible or keep them at my camp so that I wasn't provided so many options.



Please read previous posts in a topic before posting, this is backwards logic, I'm not going to explain why this makes no sense yet again.
Small party = worse for replay value, think through it logically and if you're struggling the actual logic for it has been gone over many times, twice in this thread alone.
It has nothing to do with a "perfect party" or "perfect playthrough" or passing every skill check.


Originally Posted by SpawnLQ
You guys wanting 6 chars are looking at this all wrong. You seem to be basing the need for a 6 char balanced party on older games based on older versions of DnD where a tank and healer were crucial to party survival. 5e classes are more customizable and more self sufficient. You can easily run a group of 4 with no dedicated healer. Self heal options, potions, food heals, etc. are easy to come by. Anyone can attempt any skills, and can be proficient in them depending on background including lockpicking. Even without proficiency you only lose like +2 in the early levels, not a big loss.

I have no tank, just dps fighters (GWF EK and BM Dual Wielder), and the cleric has only used her heal spell like twice when i was level 1. I used the rogue primarily for sneak attack as it seems all of my characters dont really have much trouble picking locks, then swapped him for dual wielding battle master who just provides more toughness and dps overall. I have not had any issues swapping out specific role members just trying a different party makeup as i still dominate pretty well in battle and handle anything else outside of combat just fine.

Pretty much any combination of 4 is totally doable guys even if you need to be a little tactical about it smile


What i'm reading here is, "the game is too easy and forgiving and i love it" This is exactly what i talked about earlier in this thread in regards to balancing game difficulty for a 4 man party. The only way to make 4 man parties viable outside of the cookie cutter role filling is to make the game too easy.

Larger party means more appropriate game balance, means more interesting choices, means more replay value.
I know my posts are a wall of text but really you can't explain the logic without actually explaining the logic, most arguments for 4 man party are based on three premises:
- I don't like difficulty
- Illusion of choice is better than actual choice
- I can't apply mathematical concepts taught to 10 to 13 year olds (Basic probability and ratios) to this problem.

I feel like i'm writing 2 + 2 = 4 on a blackboard and every now and then someone comes in a says "I like that 2 + 2 = 3"
Not a single comment advocating for a 4 man party has put any thought into whether their statements make sense. And when someone goes through it step by step they don't even read it.

Posted By: Noraver Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:00 PM
So I get the want for 6. 6 is typically the maximum that DMs will allow, as it does slow down the game.

However, in a video game I see nothing against it.

Because Larian seems pretty adamant against it, I can see four available options for them:

1. Larian makes parties of 6 available. This allows for more flexibility, and more story party characters (As they already confirmed more will be included).
2. Larian makes parties of 5 available. It allows for the basics, and one additional party member (Or yourself) as the "Whatever I want" character.
3. Larian makes parties of 5 available, and allows one "Follower" companion from camp to join you on adventures. The dog, the goblin, whoever you recruit.
4. Larian sticks to their guns and keeps parties of 4.

I genuinely don't see an issue with parties of 5 or 6; if difficulty is what people are using to argue against it, then why not just throw in an extra mob or two that only spawns in to the world map when you leave camp with that additional party member(s)?
Likewise, you would subtract a mob or two for less characters.
If they implement genuine difficulty settings at the beginning of the game, you would increase mob numbers, rather than flat stat buffs like other games. Flat stat buffs can only get so interesting; extra no-voice no-name mobs makes things more interesting, dynamic, and diverse in combat.
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:01 PM
Originally Posted by Riandor
I have no issue with a core 4 person party as long as I can hire additional mercs, tame beasts, have NPC’s for specific quests join, etc...

There are multiple ways to cook a goose and whilst I love the 6 man party aspect of BG1&2, I believe the focus here is on the story and interaction of the core party. So that’s fine by me, as long as I can artificially inflate the group for those epic moments, or in order to have a weird and colourful group composition.

I don’t need 6 heavy story based characters in my party at all times, I mean I’m not against it, but you do build in more replayability by limiting which of the story characters you have taken this playthrough.

Again, I’m not anti 6, I just think this discussion is perhaps too focused on it being black or white, where I do think Larian is considering some middle ground and considering the multiplayer aspect.




Allow me to summarize:
"4 is fine as long as I can have more than 4"
Posted By: Tzelanit Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:04 PM

Quote
Please read previous posts in a topic before posting, this is backwards logic, I'm not going to explain why this makes no sense yet again.
Small party = worse for replay value, think through it logically and if you're struggling the actual logic for it has been gone over many times, twice in this thread alone.
It has nothing to do with a "perfect party" or "perfect playthrough" or passing every skill check.


I'm not going to read hundreds of comments a day and plumb the depths of every post, most of which are weak or entitled takes.
I saw the topic, I shared my thoughts on it. It's not invalid because of how the thread has progressed, nor is it invalid because you don't agree with it.
In short, deal with it.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:09 PM
Amusingly enough, the very few defenders of the 4-men party are attempting an angle ("I prefer smaller parties because I can play battles more quickly") that simply doesn't stand a single bit on its feet.

In fact, while a six men party allows you to scale back the number of party members as much as you want (the old Infinity Engine games could be played even in solo and among power players it was a common tactic to reduce the number of active party members to increase their shared exp and level up faster) this interchangeability is completely lost when the limit to 4 characters is not optional anymore.
Posted By: R$M)N Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:19 PM
would be nice. 6 man party
Posted By: Horrorscope Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:26 PM
I'm good with 4.
Is there a planned lone wolf option anyone know about?
Perhaps there will be a mod for it, I believe there were for DOS's. I wonder how they handle the inventory screen, shrink it so 6 would fit?
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:46 PM
Originally Posted by Alodar

If you do the math, which you seem to think you're an expert in, 6 choose 4 has 15 different combinations. 6 choose 6 has 1 combination.
15>1


Sorry to say it like that but your exemple is stupid...
You're taking the good numbers to show you're right but you're wrong...

Let's try the same exercice with more realistic values...

1 custom + 3 companions out of 10 possibilities => 120 combination
1 custom + 5 companions out of 10 possibilities => 252 combination

Do it with 15 potential companions now... wink
Of course this is only values. Nothing i.e related to alignement.

Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 02:53 PM
Originally Posted by HeavensBells
Adding my voice to this thread, a 4 man party feels so much more restricted when choosing companions so you always have: 1 Melee/Tank, 1 Support/Healer, 1 Rogue (stealth and lockpick) and to wrap up a Magic Caster (which will usually be a wizard because of extended spell list, why would you take a warlock over a Wizard in DnD late game???).

D&D also has 12 Vanilla classes (not counting Artificers) which means being able to have only 4 of those 12 (33%) you won't get as much versatility or adaptability if you cold have a 6 man party (50% of those classes could be in the party). By the way, how are you going to balance a party in the future when more classes comes around like Sorcerers, Bards, Monks, Barbarians and Paladins? Who are you gonna cut off to add someone new and still feel like you have some balance?

In BG1 and BG2 I always hated to ask a companion to leave so I could add a new one, and only did so if they were someone I liked better or had an amazing companion quest I had to do before getting my "dream party" back. I never thought of those companions as disposables tools to do a job and for me Imoen and Misc would always be in the group no matter what, so at least 3 spots on those 6 man parties were already locked on (counting my OC as well).

Therefore a 6 man party seems much more immersive and fun as well as adaptable than going back and forth picking a mule to do a job and then dumping it back to camp when said job is done, which looks like where BG3 is going since you can ask a companion to go back to your camp and just collect dust until you need them for a job or to further down their quest.

I agree, when playing the original BG games I would decide on who was going to be in my team before I start and they would be the only people I recruit, with the only real exception been early when I'd recruit Monteron and Xzar to fight the mage at the Friendly Arm Inn or Yoshimo in the second just for the opening dungeon.

When playing BG3 I probaly won't recruit anyone who wont fit in my party since to me it's a little immersion breaking, "right you two sit here clean the camp and make dinner while the four of us go fight this dragon and then clear out thirty bandits in their camp"
Posted By: Asymmetric Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:10 PM
+1. I've never made a video game and I'm only adequate at being a Dungeon Master IRL, so I dunno. This is my take, though.

I was fine with 4-person parties for a while. I played the s*** out of Dragon Age when I was a teenager, and although I sometimes found it restrictive because I would meet someone new that I liked, I was ultimately OK with it.

Then I played Pillars of Eternity. I felt my heart soar when a fifth person joined my party; it was like my eyes had been opened. And of course I then played BG1+2 and IWD. Still in the middle of Torment.

I totally get wanting a 4-person party for a more focused experience, but listen: if the maximum is 6, you don't have to have 6 people. If you limit yourself to 4, each char will get more XP, leveling up faster to offset the difficulty of an encounter aimed at 6 characters!

As for the multiplayer concerns, they could always restrict multiplayer to 4 and have singleplayer at 6.
Posted By: Uncle Lester Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:17 PM
I'd love 6. Even 5 would be better. I was quite disappointed when I saw the limit of 4 in DA:O. The problem is with turn-based - changing from 4 to 6 will mean that fight are on average 1.5 times longer, and that's not taking into account having more enemies to balance difficulty. That sounds like it's going to make fights a drag, especially "fodder fights" with multiple weak enemies. I'm not sure how feasible it is to overcome this. (Boss fights I can see getting better though, as you'd have more tools in your arsenal to think of some creative, complex strategy.)
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:27 PM
Originally Posted by Uncle Lester
The problem is with turn-based - changing from 4 to 6 will mean that fight are on average 1.5 times longer, and that's not taking into account having more enemies to balance difficulty.
Why people keep parroting this argument?
That's not true at all. A six men party just means that the turn rotation will pass the action more often to one of the characters you are controlling rather than an enemy.
Which if anything is something that feels fairly NEEDED in the current build, where way too often you are watching a whole bunch of enemies "Alpha-striking" your party (and focusing on the casters in particular) with very sparse chances to inject your action in the middle. You may even end up cleaning encounters more quickly than with four characters.

Of course, in the long run it MAY be needed to buff the enemy side a bit to balance encounter design. Which can be achieved in a lot of ways that not necessarily pass through "adding more of them".


Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:43 PM
/sigh
ok, lets try this again Alodar, and this time, try not to limit your view and add artificial limitations to create scenarios that support your mistakes.


Originally Posted by Alodar
Originally Posted by Malkie
Originally Posted by Alodar
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.
Not only would you be adding 2 more bodies on the players side you would need to add additional monsters to make combats challenging.
Six players could mean as many as 6 more turns for combats and that's just too much.


Nonsense, this is the entire reason encounter difficulty exists in 5e. This is the opinion of DM that doesn't know how to tailor encounters to a party.


I hope the irony of you referring to 5E's encounter balance system is not lost on you. 5E Challenge Rating is based off a party of 4 ...


Difficulty adjustments are based on more than just challenge rating (CR is a guideline only), take a look at other books than just the DMG that have dedicated in depth info on this. I can't remember which book it is off the top of my head because it has been while since i sat down with it and i don't have my books to hand at present. But there is a huge section of tables that describe how to adjust encounters for party size.... Tome of Foes maybe? I'm sure someone can confirm which book i'm thinking of. On top of this, in adjusting difficulty you as a DM should understand your players' limitations and weaknesses and use this knowledge and the special properties of a creature to provide an appropriate challenge for your players. There are plenty of examples where CR just makes no sense when you consider two different creatures of the same CR as the special properties of one make it innately more challenging than the other.

Originally Posted by Alodar
It should be obvious that a combat balanced for a party of 6 takes longer than a combat balanced for a party of 4 even with the same number of bad guys.
You are taking 2 extra turns every round compared to the party of four.

If you are facing more bad guys to challenge your increased numbers the bad guys turns will take longer as well.

There is no situation where combat balanced for a party of 6 doesn't take longer than combat balanced for a party of 4.


I never said combat was shorter, combat speed is improved, I didn't say anywhere that combat takes less time to complete. I was talking about the amount of input you as a player have relative to the amount of time you are not giving input. You brought up combat speed without understanding what it is now you're refuting that by arguing about something different entirely.


Originally Posted by Alodar
Originally Posted by Alodar
You really need to explore the backgrounds in 5E. A dedicated thief is no longer necessary. With the Urchin background you gain proficiency in both stealth and Sleight of hand which allows any Dex character to sneak and pick locks/remove traps.


Originally Posted by Malkie
True to an extent, however proficiency and expertise are different things, and is not allowing for party diversity instead your just making a sub par rogue crossed with a sub par something else. Background don't fix this.


Except the character you add the Urchin background isn't sub-par at anything. Any Dex based character can have the Urchin background, lose nothing from their main class and still be able to lock pick and go stealthy when needed


OK, assuming you are 100% correct here. You are saying that either i make an urchin or take Astarion in every playthrough if i want a proficient thief. How is this increasing variety from one playthrough to the next? How are you providing an argument that supports the idea that 4 man party offers more replay value? You aren't. You are arguing AGAINST a smaller party with the backgrounds argument because you are advocating for making your party more alike every time.

Originally Posted by Alodar
Originally Posted by Alodar
There are lots of options, and the smaller the party the more re-playable the game and the more strategy you have to employ.


Originally Posted by Malkie
So less party flexibility and player agency means more replay value? That's not how that works. Go read my lengthy post above where I talk about the notion of "more strategy and inventive solutions" with smaller party, 9 times out of 10 this means go find your own favourite way to cheese.

Just so you are aware pulling statistics out of your butt is a common tactic for folks who don't have a viable argument.
Players who want to cheese encounters will cheese encounters. Here's a site that lists many of the cheese tactics players used in BG2 (https://sorcerers.net/Games/BG2/SpellsReference/Stuff/Cheese.htm) which should be noted had a party of 6.

9 times out of 10 is not pulling a statistic out of my ass, it's a turn of phrase. If you don't know the difference you are too young to be playing BG3. The Cheese list you linked, also has no requirement for 6 man party. Most of those cheese tactics where used in solo playthroughs. If you're going to google something to throw at me like that at least read the cheese strats before making a claim that they had anything to do with party size. Most of those are oversights in mechanics such as the potion stacking which is still possible in solo runs. I mentioned these already in this thread and I don't see how this helps your argument or is in any way relevant outside of my point about "inventive solutions". Linking this does nothing to refute my arguments and nothing to support yours.

Originally Posted by Alodar
Originally Posted by Malkie

Your argument for replay value works in a system without classes, not one with rigid class progression, smaller party means less flexibility, in turn this means each playthrough has a much more cookie cutter party composition which results in much less replay value. Your dialogue and decisions might differ from one playthrough to the next, but that is only one aspect of replay value, the more places you provide the opportunity for variety the more your overall variety grows exponentially. Akin to RNG layering, each layer provides exponential growth in possible outcomes. To make your claim of replay value is to show a staggering lack of understanding of how mathematics applies to the implementation, of course you make other mathematically anomalous claims in your post but i'll get to that.

So many accusations and so wrong.

Let's assume 5 in game companions ( B,C,D,E,F) and a party of 6. (You're playing character A)
First time through your party is A,B,C,D,E,F
Next time through your party is A,B,C,D,E,F
Third time through your party is A,B,C,D,E,F

Conversations don't change. Tactics don't change. The only variety is your character.

Same scenario, but party of 4:
First time through your party is A,B,C,D
Next time through your party is A,C,E,F
Third time through your party is A,B,D,F


Conversations are different, Tactics are different. By definition more variety.
If you do the math, which you seem to think you're an expert in, 6 choose 4 has 15 different combinations. 6 choose 6 has 1 combination.
15>1


This is so so stupid. No one is arguing to be able to take all companions in one playthrough. You are completely ignoring the argument here.
It has already been said that there are plans for more than 5 companions.
It has already been said that you need a bigger companion pool for a larger party to work.
"so many accusation and so wrong"
"if you do the math which you seem to think you're an expert"
I made no accusations and you don't need to be an expert mathematician to understand basic math.
The math that is actually being argued for here is as follows:

At each stage of play the player is offered a set amount of choices, let's call this number of choices x. To simplify the representation we will assume that every choice has only 2 possible outcomes, this is obviously not an accurate representation as each choice may have many more potential outcomes.
Therefore, in this example at any stage of play the total number of possible outcomes is 2 to the power of x.
For each incrementation of x the total number of possibly outcomes experiences exponential growth.
Again this is the same principle that all probability ie. a vast amount of statistics which is an entire of study within mathematics is based upon.

In asking if a 4 man party is better for replay value, or 5 or 6 is better, we are actually asking is a large x value better or a smaller x value. Is more choice better or less choice better for replay value. The answer is obviously more choices which is what you get with a larger party.

Originally Posted by Alodar
Originally Posted by Alodar
There has been no combat in Early Access that I've thought that I needed two more characters to be more effective


Originally Posted by Malkie
This has nothing to do with why people want more party members. Its about player agency and replay value, about having variety in your playthroughs.

As shown above a party of 4 has more replay value and more variety.

False, unless you add additional limitations that are not what people are talking about in this thread, ie, if you limit the number of available companions/mercs/hirelings/pets so that you as a player take the same ones every play through. Again, no one is saying they want to take all the companions, they are saying they want to change group composition so that you are NOT taking the same or very similar selection of companions/mercs/whatever on every playthrough. How are you not getting that? It has been made pretty clear.

Originally Posted by Alodar
Originally Posted by Alodar
Six players would slow down combat, decrease re-playablity, and lessen the strategy required to succeed.
That's a hard no from me.


Nothing you've said disputes any of these points.
Larian has already said that they have not hard coded the party size and that those who wish to Mod a party of 6 are free to do so after full release.





Actually, yes what I said not only disputes those points, it completely disproves those points.
Again to summarise:
Your understanding of combat speed when you say that is wrong, you're arguing for shorter combat time, which is of much greater importance in pen and paper than a cRPG and if you want less combat, maybe a cRPG isn't the right medium for you as by their very nature you spend more of your game time in combat in a cRPG than in a tabletop game.
You're argument for replay value is based on additional limitations that you are adding to the discussion, not one person in this thread has argued for maintaining those limitations. I myself fall in line with the belief that less fleshed out mercs are the the answer to fill extra party slots on top of whatever fully fleshed out companions may be in the works already. This is much easier to implement than full companions, they don't have to react and be as interactive they just have to have some interactions and input at important moments, much like the companions of BG1.
As for the strategy bit, yeah i'm not going over that again, if you don't understand strategic difficulty, turns of phrase and the underpinning principle of probability and how that same principle applies here you are either way too young for this game or you're just a lost cause.

You are entitled to your opinion, but don't try to argue that white is black. You may prefer it, but that's not the same as you're opinion being fact or in any way based in logic.
As for you're comment on modding, we are well aware that mods will be a part of things, that this is one thing that can be modded, but why on earth would someone take a game that is already too easy (in part because of the 4 man party) and cut its difficulty in half (at least) by adding two extra characters without adjusting every single aspect of the game to make it more suitable
"If you want to make a mod that overhauls the entire game, every single combat encounter in the game, you are free to do so after full release" is not constructive in the slightest. Larian are balancing encounters and fixing issues now, now is the time to do it. Not rely on someone having the time, motivation and skill to rewrite a huge portion of the game to fix this issue for them later for free. It would be better to just balance it around 5 or 6 party members now than for modders to do it later as not only is doing it later far far more work, but would have to be done by a team that is a fraction of the size.

People want a bigger party. Personally I would say a 5 man party would be the best approach as it could be done with far less work, allow a little variation and means that the mercs mechanic wouldn't be as big a portion of the party which keeps the full companions much more centre stage.
Posted By: Uncle Lester Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:48 PM
But if you have 4 party members and 6 enemies, it makes for 10 turns per round. 6 party members and 6 enemies: 12 turns. But indeed, it might mean that you will feel more agency througout the fight, as the ratio of allies/enemies will be better, if they go with "buff enemies" rather than "add more". One problem I could potentially see with this is that buffing enemies in a meaningful way (not just pump numbers) requires more effort than adding more of the same... Or not, if the enemies are unique and would require new models/animations/voices. Still, rebalancing might be more complicated than it would seem. But I think we might have a better idea of this when we see the difficulty options, which are said to be more interesting than "buff numbers". Perhaps a solution would be "bump this type of difficulty settings by 1 for 5-man party and by 2 for 6-man party to experience a similar level of difficulty".

(I'm playing a bit of a devil's advocate here, I would strongly prefer a party of 6. I mentioned the "parroted" argument because it seemed like a legitimate concern, I will be happy to be proven wrong.)
Posted By: Eireson Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:50 PM
As someone who has been playing D&D computer games since they first appeared (alas yes I am that old!) I'd have to say I was more than a little disappointed when I tried to get a 5th member to join only to find out it wasn't possible. The vast majority of D&D games have had six party members as the standard size - Gold box series, Eye of the Beholder series, actually pretty much all the SSI games, Baldurs Gate 1 & 2, Icewind Dale 1&2, Temple of Elemental Evil, Pool of Radiance - Myth Drrannor etc etc. Even Neverwinter Nights 1 & 2 had 5 I think.

Four is just too limited for me - ideally I'd like six although I'd settle for 5. Whether they settled on four because its what they've always done or because they have concerns over the duration of combat or limitations in the engine doesn't really matter - one more character in the party would make a world of difference in allowing a bit more variety/flexibility in party composition, and I can't see that having a 5th member would require a major change in the game systems especially given that we are just at the beginning of early access.

Doesn't help that the party members you can pick up at the start are unlikable and totally opposite to the kind of party I prefer to play!
Posted By: Epona Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:57 PM
I think I read somewhere there might be a "crisis point" locking your party like in Divinity: Original Sin 2 which I could understand why they might want to limit the party, but that just made me always play someone with an origin (eg Lohse or Sebille), rather than a player-created character, unless I was maybe doing a multiplayer campaign with some of my friends. I would enjoy a larger party size, especially since I'd like to eventually play a bard, ranger, or maybe even a druid eventually, but when you have to look at frontline/healer/dps composition, 4 doesn't give a lot of flexibility right now, until maybe more classes are added, like paladin or something. Ultimately I suppose it depends on gameplay and story and how Larian feels about it, but I'd personally try to work harder to accomplish something if it means I get to keep more of my companions.

Posted By: Riandor Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 03:59 PM
Originally Posted by Malkie
Originally Posted by Riandor
I have no issue with a core 4 person party as long as I can hire additional mercs, tame beasts, have NPC’s for specific quests join, etc...

There are multiple ways to cook a goose and whilst I love the 6 man party aspect of BG1&2, I believe the focus here is on the story and interaction of the core party. So that’s fine by me, as long as I can artificially inflate the group for those epic moments, or in order to have a weird and colourful group composition.

I don’t need 6 heavy story based characters in my party at all times, I mean I’m not against it, but you do build in more replayability by limiting which of the story characters you have taken this playthrough.

Again, I’m not anti 6, I just think this discussion is perhaps too focused on it being black or white, where I do think Larian is considering some middle ground and considering the multiplayer aspect.




Allow me to summarize:
"4 is fine as long as I can have more than 4"


Lol that’s not what I was saying hehe
I was saying this all came about because Larian said you had to decide which characters at the end of Chapter1 you were sticking with.

Thus my claim is that I don’t mind a CORE party of 4 IF I can add to it with npc’s, animals, whatever.

Because I actually largely agree with larger parties and the conversations about interesting compositions. So far though I’ve gone with my experience from BG1&2 (I’ve yet to try BG3 EA), and that was very combat heavy, so a team of six really did allow for some oddball characters tagging along.

I’m also totally up for fully fledged 6 characters all with epic stories and interaction, I just appreciate it’s a ton of work to get that to work! Hence my 4 core plus 1 or 2 slot fillers.
Posted By: Noirscape Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 04:09 PM
I agree that 4 party members feels very limited in this game, especially compared to DOS2 where builds were a lot more flexible. +1
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 04:55 PM
Originally Posted by Uncle Lester
But if you have 4 party members and 6 enemies, it makes for 10 turns per round. 6 party members and 6 enemies: 12 turns. But indeed, it might mean that you will feel more agency througout the fight, as the ratio of allies/enemies will be better, if they go with "buff enemies" rather than "add more". One problem I could potentially see with this is that buffing enemies in a meaningful way (not just pump numbers) requires more effort than adding more of the same... Or not, if the enemies are unique and would require new models/animations/voices. Still, rebalancing might be more complicated than it would seem. But I think we might have a better idea of this when we see the difficulty options, which are said to be more interesting than "buff numbers". Perhaps a solution would be "bump this type of difficulty settings by 1 for 5-man party and by 2 for 6-man party to experience a similar level of difficulty".

(I'm playing a bit of a devil's advocate here, I would strongly prefer a party of 6. I mentioned the "parroted" argument because it seemed like a legitimate concern, I will be happy to be proven wrong.)


How to go about adjusting difficulty is an important concern, I would imagine for some fights increasing numbers would be the best approach (number of fodder mobs or HP values), some fights would be better served by adding a mini boss or a lieutenant type mob, some by adjusting the fight environment slightly. In some encounters this would be easier to do than others I'm sure. There really is no other way but to look at every encounter individually which will already be happening to some extent while balancing for 4 man party, there is obviously an increase in workload to adjust things from their current state to make it suitable for a 5 man party and even more work would required to adjust for a 6 man party. Hence I think 5 is a better answer than 6, as much as i would like to have 6 with a potential 20ish companions to choose from, that simply isn't a realistic ask.

5 gets my vote due to practicality.

Originally Posted by Eireson
As someone who has been playing D&D computer games since they first appeared (alas yes I am that old!) I'd have to say I was more than a little disappointed when I tried to get a 5th member to join only to find out it wasn't possible. The vast majority of D&D games have had six party members as the standard size - Gold box series, Eye of the Beholder series, actually pretty much all the SSI games, Baldurs Gate 1 & 2, Icewind Dale 1&2, Temple of Elemental Evil, Pool of Radiance - Myth Drrannor etc etc. Even Neverwinter Nights 1 & 2 had 5 I think.



I wouldn't count NWN1 here, didn't really have a "party", it used mercs that the player didn't have direct control over and they had limited story interaction, they were like BG1 companions in terms of their input, not in the same league as bg2, you had your main character and 1 ai controlled follower that was of... limited usefulness fairly frequently, they played more like summoned creatures than party members (HotU did improve on their interaction levels though). NWN 2 varied your party size in the campaigns and returned full control to the player. The OC had a 5 man party that increased to 6 for a part and you took all companions for the finale, Mask of the Betrayer had a 4 man party iirc, but your choices were reasonably adaptive, 1ofMany could swap his entire build and honestly even with the very limited implementation of 3.5e character builds were much more flexible than 5e and much more easily broken, especially at epic levels. Regardless nwn1 and 2 were a far cry from the class+kit of BG1 and 2 or the class+subclass of 5e where those choices are so heavily defining. The increased flexibility reduced role rigidity making smaller party size infinitely easier to handle than a larger limit.
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 05:06 PM
Originally Posted by Riandor
Originally Posted by Malkie
Originally Posted by Riandor
I have no issue with a core 4 person party as long as I can hire additional mercs, tame beasts, have NPC’s for specific quests join, etc...

There are multiple ways to cook a goose and whilst I love the 6 man party aspect of BG1&2, I believe the focus here is on the story and interaction of the core party. So that’s fine by me, as long as I can artificially inflate the group for those epic moments, or in order to have a weird and colourful group composition.

I don’t need 6 heavy story based characters in my party at all times, I mean I’m not against it, but you do build in more replayability by limiting which of the story characters you have taken this playthrough.

Again, I’m not anti 6, I just think this discussion is perhaps too focused on it being black or white, where I do think Larian is considering some middle ground and considering the multiplayer aspect.




Allow me to summarize:
"4 is fine as long as I can have more than 4"


Lol that’s not what I was saying hehe
I was saying this all came about because Larian said you had to decide which characters at the end of Chapter1 you were sticking with.

Thus my claim is that I don’t mind a CORE party of 4 IF I can add to it with npc’s, animals, whatever.

Because I actually largely agree with larger parties and the conversations about interesting compositions. So far though I’ve gone with my experience from BG1&2 (I’ve yet to try BG3 EA), and that was very combat heavy, so a team of six really did allow for some oddball characters tagging along.

I’m also totally up for fully fledged 6 characters all with epic stories and interaction, I just appreciate it’s a ton of work to get that to work! Hence my 4 core plus 1 or 2 slot fillers.


Sorry that was as much a joke response as anything.

But yes basically the idea of a set of fully fleshed out companions + a slot or two going to much less interactive companions (mercs or whatever you want to call them) which is the compromise I would push, though I would still say 5 party slots would be the best compromise to limit the amount of additional balance work that would have to be done.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 05:28 PM
I think a party of 5 would actually be the ideal. Let me illustrate based on my experiences so far with the game. I'm playing a ranger and thanks to the way I built her my character can use thieves tools to open locks and deal with traps (though I haven't encountered any traps that I can disarm, maybe I'm just being dense and missing when I can do this) so I don't need Astarion in my party for that. Lae'zel has been my favourite character thus far and has been a reliable tank from the beginning. Likewise Shadowheart has been absolutely vital as a healer. The limit on short rests and the relative scarcity of healing items makes it so, and it's rare I come out of a big fight not desperate for healing, and the game has done a good job making me hesitant to take long rests (I think I've only taken 4 in the past 12+ hours of playing). Plus she hits hard enough that she serves as a good frontliner alongside Lae'zel. I would not last long without Shadowheart for healing so she's a mainstay. That leaves me with only one extra slot for another character. Now consider that the
goblin camp
is a really important area for Wyll's storyline and not taking him means you're gonna miss out on what seems to be a major beat in his story, so I have heavy incentive to take him along. Which means that for the goblin camp my party is set from the get-go since without Shadowheart and Lae'zel I would not be able to handle a lot of the combat without them should I get into combat (and I accidentally aggro'ed the whole camp so having them is the only way I could play and not die).

Now I like all of those characters so it's not the worst situation in the world, but right now with the characters I have currently, I only realistically have one free slot for the remaining 3 companions. A fifth slot would immediately allow me to take another non-essential companion who I want to have along purely for story reasons. A lot of people hav been talking about combat length but the only time I've felt like combat was too long was when I accidentally aggroed more enemies in the middle of a battle that had already been going on. So personally having the combat be longer would a plus for me since I enjoy it a lot overall. Plus a fifth companion would mean that while combat length might be greater, each character in the party would be expending relatively fewer resources so you likely wouldn't run out of them as quickly.
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 06:43 PM
I'd like to point as well that, as a D&D player and sometimes DM, number of characters in a party does influence a little bit if only on CR from monsters in a encounter. And what does the CR of monsters in a combat mean (if you come from DOS)? CR tells you the upper maximum difficulty of the monster, for example the famous Illithid Mind Flayer Arcanist has a CR of 8, meaning a party of 4 players lvl 6 could take 1 on with hard difficulty while a party of 6 lvl 6 could take it easy.

Later in the game encounters like an Adult Red Dragon would be deadly for a 4 man lvl 12 but manageable for a 6 man lvl 12 party. It might sound like the game might be too easy for a 6 man party instead of 4 but it can also make it more challenging and epic if you throw more epic stuff at them since they'll manage: Why not an Adult Red Dragon (CR17) that Summons two zombie Beholders (CR13) as allies? Or even a Death Tyrant (CR 21) and a powerful Lich (CR21 or 22 in it's lair)? Yeah that last epic encounter I just described can only be taken by a 6 man party lvl 20 at a Hard Setting, it's deadly for only 4 characters.

Sure the game might not be like real D&D, but I do want a bigger party for future encounters in the late game if we are expecting to have the same amount of epicness and legendary encounters we had in BG2. I'd like to have a Bard countercharming and polymorphing, while my Fighter and tanks and wrecks havoc at the enemy frontline, my Paladin destroys the evil and protect it's allies, my Ranger deadeye shoots enemy magic users, my Wizard casts Timestop or Meteor Swarm and my character do whaterver I want it to do in the last spot of a bigger and more balanced party.


Sure, we're still in the early stages of the game, but rest assured we won't always be fighting 20 CR 1/4 goblins or CR 1 Imps
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 06:53 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco



Well, we are probably wasting our breath here, since Larian, with all its upsides, is almost NOTORIOUS for being stubborn and sticking to their poor design decision no matter how much feedback they get against it (the obscene randomized loot system of their past games or the massively criticized armor system in DOS 2 come to mind).



Ugh, tell me about it. This is why most feedback i've given about stuff doesn't come with optimism that it'll change, because they can just be like "nah i like this". Not gonna go into specifics about what I've talked about, not needed. Just wanted to reinforce what you said. It's even more relevant because we don't know if a change is going to happen UNTIL it happens. They don't bother putting out any sort of roadmap or list of changes they are going to do. So we could be focusing on things that are already planned for changes and not on things that they aren't and we should give feedback on the latter. Larian has it's upsides...being vocal and communicating during EA on what their plans are and what they are doing isn't one of them. Wasn't during OS2 and probably won't be for this either. Haven't seen them talk leading up to EA about a roadmap of sorts so we have an idea of their plan. It's a very one sided thing.
Posted By: TheWhiteRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 06:57 PM
Imma add my 2 cents to this conversation and say no, stick with 4. MAYBE 5, but thats absolutely it.

All this nonsense that players are saying about conversations should be with everyone involved, huge parties, and what have you. This is 2020, games are no longer easy, or handed to you. You have to actually -PLAY- them, and that means making, (everyone duck!), decisions!

Everyone can talk in one conversation? Offering their rolls to conversational choices? Why have choices at all then? You are loading the dice. How is this even fun when you "win" every conversation? Why. Roll. The. Dice. At. All.

6 member party? Why choose what classes you want to bring that would be best for whatever situation? You aren't making any decisions at this point, you are just freerolling and claiming a win for something you didn't Actually win in the first place because you started a combat with a loaded out squad.

To be completely fair to the OP, whom for the record is the exact same age as I am, down to the month, which is creepy and cool, their suggestion is essentially the creating of a different mode, which also includes a warning that this makes the game easier (I would use the word 'free', but I digress), I don't hate having more options, nor will I ever, but this distinction MUST be made.
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:04 PM
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit


Everyone can talk in one conversation? Offering their rolls to conversational choices? Why have choices at all then? You are loading the dice. How is this even fun when you "win" every conversation? Why. Roll. The. Dice. At. All.



There is a difference in failing a check when a character tried something they are decent on, then failing with something they can't do at all. No I don't want my rogue reading this arcane book and failing because guess what, i know he will, i want the wizard 2 feet back to try instead. Now if he fails, sure, w/e, lets move on!
D&D is a team game. Not a single person game. The team works together to overcome challenges, not look around at butterflies while one character does everything, ESPECIALLY when you get ambushed into a convo and the person they talk with is...less then ideal. This isn't a solo adventure, it's a team of adventurers.

Every crpg does this now. Pillars, Pathfinder, Wasteland, even Solasta with its much smaller budget and team, because they realize that you're playing a team game. As a group of adventurers.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:20 PM
UnderworldHades has it right. What's the point having a party if they're not goint to contribute to dialogue checks? That's a major part of the system and you as the player should be able to make use of all the tools at your disposal. Especially when you can get into conversations that take you by surprise and thus you have no input in who you want to tackle the challenge.

Furthermore what are you even talking about with implying that games were once handed to players?
Posted By: TheWhiteRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:25 PM
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit


Everyone can talk in one conversation? Offering their rolls to conversational choices? Why have choices at all then? You are loading the dice. How is this even fun when you "win" every conversation? Why. Roll. The. Dice. At. All.



There is a difference in failing a check when a character tried something they are decent on, then failing with something they can't do at all. No I don't want my rogue reading this arcane book and failing because guess what, i know he will, i want the wizard 2 feet back to try instead. Now if he fails, sure, w/e, lets move on!
D&D is a team game. Not a single person game. The team works together to overcome challenges, not look around at butterflies while one character does everything, ESPECIALLY when you get ambushed into a convo and the person they talk with is...less then ideal. This isn't a solo adventure, it's a team of adventurers.

Every crpg does this now. Pillars, Pathfinder, Wasteland, even Solasta with its much smaller budget and team, because they realize that you're playing a team game. As a group of adventurers.


I'll grant you the ambush conversations, you should probably get like an initial decision point of 'Who would you like to talk?" type of deal, but outside of that, no, sorry. Someone failing at something they can't do at all is them failing because they NOT SUPPOSED TO BE GOOD AT EVERYTHING. Your book example they already solved, when its an item or an area check, everyone gets a roll. But when you have a conversation with another person, you dont listen to each sentence, and then turn around to your group of friends saying "HEY WHAT SHOULD I SAY HERE? DOES SOMEONE ELSE WANT TO INTERJECT?" Thats not a conversation. Thats loading the dice. And if you DO do that, the person, creature, whatever, would ABSOLUTELY have a reaction to that situation, and would just say "ya I know what you are gonna do now and now you lose instantly." or something to the degree of making the roll EXTREMELY hard, even if you are proficient at the check, because you literally just announced to the room that you are changing it up for the sole purpose of 'winning' (for lack of a better word) the conversation. I realize when you play a tabletop game, with a DM, you all are CAPABLE of talking out of character, and making that decision as such. But this is you playing a character who is alive and truly acting things out as they come. The situation you are wanting does not have a place here. It just doesn't make sense, other than loading the dice in your favor.
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:35 PM
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit
Imma add my 2 cents to this conversation and say no, stick with 4. MAYBE 5, but thats absolutely it.

All this nonsense that players are saying about conversations should be with everyone involved, huge parties, and what have you. This is 2020, games are no longer easy, or handed to you. You have to actually -PLAY- them, and that means making, (everyone duck!), decisions!


If you actually read other comments like the second before yours I've voiced, as a D&D player and sometimes DM that having more characters doesn't make the game "free" as you'd like to state or easier, it's just a matter of balancing encounters. By the way having more characters in a party if you do play D&D means, in basic words, that your encounters can be harder and have more legendary and epic monsters, specially in the end game which is where Larian needs to plan it really well right now.

BG2 actually made the top 10 games of all time due to the insane level of awesomeness they throwed at us, who can forget the first time they encountered the mind flayers, the dragons, beholders liches and other bhaal spawns? BG3 has to rise to the same level in the end (even if we need to take ir to BG4) . Those encounters were hard as f* even if you had 2 multiclassed Clerics and a Wizard and a Rogue and Misc.
Posted By: eventHandler Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:40 PM
To be clear, I do not care at all about companions offering their skills for dice rolls in conversations. In fact, I'd prefer if the checks always rely completely on my main character's stats (and getting my own speak with animals ring so I don't have to rely on the warlock to do the talking). I just want to hear their input and the extra lore tidbits without having to replay the game with different combinations. I don't want to be able to know what other branches of convo would result in; I want the dialog I'd get from my choices just with the other companions in the group to respond as well.

This is not about mechanics. It's just about getting a few extra lines of dialog from missing oh hey that NPC knows that Companion. What is the point of having to jump to camp, swap someone and manage inventory from that, then teleport back and start a dialog, then back to camp, get the companion you want for everything else....

Some people you just want for that 1 specific interaction, and the rest of the time they can stand back. Like when you find a corpse drained of blood, you're gonna want the vampire to be with you. You can send all the locked chests back to camp to be opened later, but you can't drag a dead hog to camp to have a round table discussion.

I fully accept that we are using 5e rules, so I'm not suggestion Larian switch to the far superior system of having skill checks that you either pass or fail based on your actual stats from games like Outer Worlds. We are playing D&D officially licensed 5e, so we are stuck with the dice rolls that make a lot of sense in person with other people and a DM to react, but are entirely unsatisfying alone. That's the price of paying licensed IP content.

But you can be damn sure I will be save scumming to get the outcomes I want in the actual release. I'm here for the content, and enduring the WotC 5e mechanics to get at it; not the other way around.

If you don't want 6 companions, fine just let us hotswap characters in place. It's tedious to have to load a quick save for things where if you leave people die etc, just to return with the "right" companions to hear the backstory that in no way effects anything other than my own curiosity of the lore.
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:41 PM
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit


Everyone can talk in one conversation? Offering their rolls to conversational choices? Why have choices at all then? You are loading the dice. How is this even fun when you "win" every conversation? Why. Roll. The. Dice. At. All.



There is a difference in failing a check when a character tried something they are decent on, then failing with something they can't do at all. No I don't want my rogue reading this arcane book and failing because guess what, i know he will, i want the wizard 2 feet back to try instead. Now if he fails, sure, w/e, lets move on!
D&D is a team game. Not a single person game. The team works together to overcome challenges, not look around at butterflies while one character does everything, ESPECIALLY when you get ambushed into a convo and the person they talk with is...less then ideal. This isn't a solo adventure, it's a team of adventurers.

Every crpg does this now. Pillars, Pathfinder, Wasteland, even Solasta with its much smaller budget and team, because they realize that you're playing a team game. As a group of adventurers.


I'll grant you the ambush conversations, you should probably get like an initial decision point of 'Who would you like to talk?" type of deal, but outside of that, no, sorry. Someone failing at something they can't do at all is them failing because they NOT SUPPOSED TO BE GOOD AT EVERYTHING. Your book example they already solved, when its an item or an area check, everyone gets a roll. But when you have a conversation with another person, you dont listen to each sentence, and then turn around to your group of friends saying "HEY WHAT SHOULD I SAY HERE? DOES SOMEONE ELSE WANT TO INTERJECT?" Thats not a conversation. Thats loading the dice. And if you DO do that, the person, creature, whatever, would ABSOLUTELY have a reaction to that situation, and would just say "ya I know what you are gonna do now and now you lose instantly." or something to the degree of making the roll EXTREMELY hard, even if you are proficient at the check, because you literally just announced to the room that you are changing it up for the sole purpose of 'winning' (for lack of a better word) the conversation. I realize when you play a tabletop game, with a DM, you all are CAPABLE of talking out of character, and making that decision as such. But this is you playing a character who is alive and truly acting things out as they come. The situation you are wanting does not have a place here. It just doesn't make sense, other than loading the dice in your favor.



That's what you're not getting. I'm not saying that "SOMEONE should be GOOD AT EVERYTHING". This is a TEAM Game. and as a team you tackle your problems and try to solve them as a TEAM. Whether you succeed or not is a diffrent story. Right now it's ONE person doing everything in a conversation, not the group. Again, you're missing the point. It's not about one person being good at everything. And no, in tabletop, when a group comes across an encounter, even in character multiple characters are interacting. One does an insight check while other persuades. Then the NPC starts talking about history or magic, then the person profecient in it can be like "oh i get this" or if the roll fails for that person then they don't. That is how real life/tabletop works. As a team you tackle your issues. Not to mention its completely immersion breaking when the wizard or someone that knows stuff is standing 2 feet behind you but won't bother, letting the dumb barbarian figure out a magic puzzle or w/e example you want to use, or letting you get grappled at knifepoint by a fucking vampire while my warrior and healer will look at butterflies and not interject or do anything. This is the opposite of immerson. Whether the group fails or not is still dependent on the Dice, just bc group members can roll for you doesn't mean you automatically succeed.
Posted By: Stabbey Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:44 PM
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit
I'll grant you the ambush conversations, you should probably get like an initial decision point of 'Who would you like to talk?" type of deal, but outside of that, no, sorry. Someone failing at something they can't do at all is them failing because they NOT SUPPOSED TO BE GOOD AT EVERYTHING. Your book example they already solved, when its an item or an area check, everyone gets a roll. But when you have a conversation with another person, you dont listen to each sentence, and then turn around to your group of friends saying "HEY WHAT SHOULD I SAY HERE? DOES SOMEONE ELSE WANT TO INTERJECT?" Thats not a conversation. Thats loading the dice. And if you DO do that, the person, creature, whatever, would ABSOLUTELY have a reaction to that situation, and would just say "ya I know what you are gonna do now and now you lose instantly." or something to the degree of making the roll EXTREMELY hard, even if you are proficient at the check, because you literally just announced to the room that you are changing it up for the sole purpose of 'winning' (for lack of a better word) the conversation. I realize when you play a tabletop game, with a DM, you all are CAPABLE of talking out of character, and making that decision as such. But this is you playing a character who is alive and truly acting things out as they come. The situation you are wanting does not have a place here. It just doesn't make sense, other than loading the dice in your favor.


Don't be ridiculous. In pen and paper around the tabletop, human players can jump into a conversation and interject at any time. The rules expect that. The rules are not designed for one person to be able to easily pass every check in the pen and paper version, so why are you insisting that one person and one person only has to make every single check in the videogame?

You're arguing in favor of loading the dice AGAINST the player to make success nigh-impossible at all.
Posted By: jayn23 Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:59 PM
Just to add my point of view to the discussion, while like most of you guys I would preferer a party of 6 for multiple reasons most were mentioned before so no point in going over them again.
Larian has already acknowledged that many fans want a 6 player party and they still decided to go for a 4 party build because they felt it was the "sweet spot" so asking them to change to 6 party and rebalance the whole game in very unlikely, I think we should be more realistic with our requests and go with what the OP suggested - they continue to follow there vision and create the game for a 4 man party, add a option in menus to unlock a 6 man party with a pop up notifying you that the game was balanced for 4 man party and difficulty level is untested for this build.
this has a much higher chance of happening if they see the demand for it.

and for those thinking that what's the point of a 6 man party if combat is balanced for 4 - well i can give you at least one laugh
after act 1 we need to choose who moves on with us to act2 and who is left behind, this way we get to take more companions with us - more companions quests to do, better RP and banter etc..
Posted By: Riandor Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 07:59 PM
Given everything said, I would be pretty happy with 5 to a party.
I think the odd number can add interesting synergy vs aggro with party members of various "alignments".
Posted By: Grantig Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 08:06 PM
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit


Everyone can talk in one conversation? Offering their rolls to conversational choices? Why have choices at all then? You are loading the dice. How is this even fun when you "win" every conversation? Why. Roll. The. Dice. At. All.



There is a difference in failing a check when a character tried something they are decent on, then failing with something they can't do at all. No I don't want my rogue reading this arcane book and failing because guess what, i know he will, i want the wizard 2 feet back to try instead. Now if he fails, sure, w/e, lets move on!
D&D is a team game. Not a single person game. The team works together to overcome challenges, not look around at butterflies while one character does everything, ESPECIALLY when you get ambushed into a convo and the person they talk with is...less then ideal. This isn't a solo adventure, it's a team of adventurers.

Every crpg does this now. Pillars, Pathfinder, Wasteland, even Solasta with its much smaller budget and team, because they realize that you're playing a team game. As a group of adventurers.


This!
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 08:15 PM
To end this discussion about party members doing rolls.

https://old.reddit.com/r/BaldursGat...rolls_are_coming_just_not_ready_in_time/

As it states in the title, 44 min mark of the stream that is linked.
Posted By: Malkie Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:19 PM
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit


Everyone can talk in one conversation? Offering their rolls to conversational choices? Why have choices at all then? You are loading the dice. How is this even fun when you "win" every conversation? Why. Roll. The. Dice. At. All.



There is a difference in failing a check when a character tried something they are decent on, then failing with something they can't do at all. No I don't want my rogue reading this arcane book and failing because guess what, i know he will, i want the wizard 2 feet back to try instead. Now if he fails, sure, w/e, lets move on!
D&D is a team game. Not a single person game. The team works together to overcome challenges, not look around at butterflies while one character does everything, ESPECIALLY when you get ambushed into a convo and the person they talk with is...less then ideal. This isn't a solo adventure, it's a team of adventurers.

Every crpg does this now. Pillars, Pathfinder, Wasteland, even Solasta with its much smaller budget and team, because they realize that you're playing a team game. As a group of adventurers.


I'll grant you the ambush conversations, you should probably get like an initial decision point of 'Who would you like to talk?" type of deal, but outside of that, no, sorry. Someone failing at something they can't do at all is them failing because they NOT SUPPOSED TO BE GOOD AT EVERYTHING. Your book example they already solved, when its an item or an area check, everyone gets a roll. But when you have a conversation with another person, you dont listen to each sentence, and then turn around to your group of friends saying "HEY WHAT SHOULD I SAY HERE? DOES SOMEONE ELSE WANT TO INTERJECT?" Thats not a conversation. Thats loading the dice. And if you DO do that, the person, creature, whatever, would ABSOLUTELY have a reaction to that situation, and would just say "ya I know what you are gonna do now and now you lose instantly." or something to the degree of making the roll EXTREMELY hard, even if you are proficient at the check, because you literally just announced to the room that you are changing it up for the sole purpose of 'winning' (for lack of a better word) the conversation. I realize when you play a tabletop game, with a DM, you all are CAPABLE of talking out of character, and making that decision as such. But this is you playing a character who is alive and truly acting things out as they come. The situation you are wanting does not have a place here. It just doesn't make sense, other than loading the dice in your favor.


So when you and your friends are out as a group and you all bump into another friend or a sibling, does your entire group stand behind one person refusing to give input so that the conversation only involves you and the new arrived individual? The reason other games do this now is because it more closely emulates how social interaction actually works. People dont stand silently behind one elected speaker and not offer input or their expertise on a topic.

If you're out with your engineer brother and you get asked a random question about engineering don't you think its possible or even likely that your brother would chime in? You're interpretation is absolutely silly. Of course your party members would chime in, I don't think its appropriate for all rolls but there are many where it would be silly and inappropriate for your party members to stay silent or not intervene.

Edit: A good example of what i mean would be Gorion's Ward about to touch a dangerous looking magic rune while Edwin is standing behind them. If Edwin likes him, it's a chance for Edwin to demonstrate his superiority by saving him, or it might be a potential opportunity for Edwin to remove Gorion's Ward from equation by pretending not to be watching. Party members contributing to or even taking over rolls is an excellent way to build upon your companions' characterisation and improve immersion.
Posted By: BrianDavion Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:25 PM
Originally Posted by HeavensBells
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit
Imma add my 2 cents to this conversation and say no, stick with 4. MAYBE 5, but thats absolutely it.

All this nonsense that players are saying about conversations should be with everyone involved, huge parties, and what have you. This is 2020, games are no longer easy, or handed to you. You have to actually -PLAY- them, and that means making, (everyone duck!), decisions!


If you actually read other comments like the second before yours I've voiced, as a D&D player and sometimes DM that having more characters doesn't make the game "free" as you'd like to state or easier, it's just a matter of balancing encounters. By the way having more characters in a party if you do play D&D means, in basic words, that your encounters can be harder and have more legendary and epic monsters, specially in the end game which is where Larian needs to plan it really well right now.

BG2 actually made the top 10 games of all time due to the insane level of awesomeness they throwed at us, who can forget the first time they encountered the mind flayers, the dragons, beholders liches and other bhaal spawns? BG3 has to rise to the same level in the end (even if we need to take ir to BG4) . Those encounters were hard as f* even if you had 2 multiclassed Clerics and a Wizard and a Rogue and Misc.



yeah anyone who thinks video games these days are harder and that "old video games where easy" is full of themselves. I've been playing video games since the 90s. they've gotten a LOT easier
Posted By: wpmaura Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:27 PM
+1, think 5 over 6
Posted By: Kavonde Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:30 PM
+1, though whether Larian adds this officially or not, it's a certainty that modders will. (Not that that helps non-PC players, I suppose.)
Posted By: Merry Mayhem Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:38 PM
I created my own post for this, not seeing it. I agree that we need 6 man parties in BG3
Posted By: LawRecords Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:41 PM
+1 to having a 6 party team. 5 could work (perhaps) but a 4 person team is too restrictive. The current size forces you to pick certain characters so you have your bases covered (rogue, caster, cleric, tank). No room for a bard, ranger, monk, etc. in there.

If the intent is to choose characters for your party because you like their personalities, then they're failing at that. I'm choosing who joins my team purely on what my PC's class is. E.g. if I'm a rogue, i'll drop Astarion but keep Shadowheart (cleric), Gale (mage), and Lyzael (tank). I could probably sub out Gale and Wyll but the others are locked unless I change my main class.

I suspect part of the issue for Larian is the effort with creating new party members (voice lines, choice & consequence, etc). Wasteland 3 had a good solution for this - you can have 2 companions, and 4 player made characters. Maybe the answer for BG3 can give you 3 player made characters and 3 companions, or some variant thereof.
Posted By: dSchmetterling Re: Party Size Discussion - 08/10/20 10:52 PM
Yeah, i need 5 or 6 size of group too, because 2 reasons.

Please forgive my english... far away from my natural language xD

1. Last i played Pathfinder:Kingmaker (size of group is 6 and loved the tactical options and the diversity in the group) and thougt that i can play D:OS2 but the size of group is horrible. Mage, Klerik, Fighter and a Rogue or Archer or a Archer with options for Lockpick ... i hate it. And than i have so many options for classes that i cant make a decision. (EDIT: Because of this, I deleted the game before escaping the island and will probably not continue to play it.) Here i have the same problem. Why i can chose from so many rasses and classes if i can play with 4 only in a group by 3 fix classes? Thats not funny. I like Wasteland 3 more than BG3 alone because the size of group.

2. and this is my fault too, i thought i order a BG3, after i played BG2 so mutch with this huge group ... but with a group of 4 i have not the feeling this is a BG. Okay, that was my expectation and I was disappointed. In short, if I had informed myself beforehand and had known that there are only groups of four, I would not have bought the game.

In this moment i get the 5. member i praied that the group is bigger than 4 and ... no. No good feeling.

I would not refund this game because i think thats would be great in future but this fault, dont collect information before i bought a game, i dont to that a second time...
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 12:24 AM
Originally Posted by dSchmetterling
Yeah, i need 5 or 6 size of group too, because 2 reasons.

Please forgive my english... far away from my natural language xD

1. Last i played Pathfinder:Kingmaker (size of group is 6 and loved the tactical options and the diversity in the group) and thougt that i can play D:OS2 but the size of group is horrible. Mage, Klerik, Fighter and a Rogue or Archer or a Archer with options for Lockpick ... i hate it. And than i have so many options for classes that i cant make a decision. (EDIT: Because of this, I deleted the game before escaping the island and will probably not continue to play it.) Here i have the same problem. Why i can chose from so many rasses and classes if i can play with 4 only in a group by 3 fix classes? Thats not funny. I like Wasteland 3 more than BG3 alone because the size of group.

2. and this is my fault too, i thought i order a BG3, after i played BG2 so mutch with this huge group ... but with a group of 4 i have not the feeling this is a BG. Okay, that was my expectation and I was disappointed. In short, if I had informed myself beforehand and had known that there are only groups of four, I would not have bought the game.

In this moment i get the 5. member i praied that the group is bigger than 4 and ... no. No good feeling.

I would not refund this game because i think thats would be great in future but this fault, dont collect information before i bought a game, i dont to that a second time...


Even if they don't add, wait for full release and then get the mod. They specifically said in some interview/panel that they left room for more because of how popular the mod for more party members was in Div OS2.
Posted By: Anfindel Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 01:22 AM
I too find a 4 character limit to be too restrictive. I was raised on Original flavor D & D, and the AD&D 2.0, and truly enjoy the addition of support classes beyond the 4 major food groups - adding a ranger, bard pallie or such provides more variety. And while some folks want to enjoy the replayability enforced by a 4 person limit, some of us have other responsibilities that limit our play time. I've been playing one single run of PoE2 since release, and only just hit lvl 17 on that first play through. Work, family etc. take up far too much time for me to ever play 100 different BG3 run throughs.

My DOS2 game uses the mod that allows me to use additional group members, and if Larian doesn't add that to BG3, I expect to grab the first mod that allows that flexibility. My time is valuable, and what payed for the $60 I handed over for the game.
Posted By: Vaughann722 Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 02:25 AM
I agree 5 or 6 slots would be better ; allow more diversity ; but the game would have to be rebalanced ; and you'd probably need to recruit every companion. I wouldn't mind temporary NPCs joining the Party at times also.
Posted By: Kal Spiro Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 03:18 AM
Four party members is classic DnD video game size. Considering how cake fights have been so far with just four, I can't imagine how broken six might be.
Posted By: Fenrissama Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 03:20 AM
We absolutely need at least a 6 man party. If Larian doesn't add this in vanilla I will have this be my first mod. Well written
Posted By: Zenzo Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 07:41 AM
Indeed we need at least 5 man party, being restricted to 4 is suffocating. In DAO you could keep your companions all the time and take them for a quest if you feel like it. But in DOS2 at some point they gone forever, and BG3, for now, resembles DOS2 alot. Why make the player to discard the precious banter options? It's looks like a indirect way to force the player replay the game more times. Personally i can accept 5 man party, but is that such a problem to add one more up to six? Apply to 6 man party some xp penalties, this is not that difficult.
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades
Even if they don't add, wait for full release and then get the mod.

But, the thing is, if that issue left to the modders, rebalancing the whole game for 5 or 6 party will take a while and the result will be imperfect anyway.
Posted By: Jumbot Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 07:52 AM
+1
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 08:28 AM
Originally Posted by Zenzo

But, the thing is, if that issue left to the modders, rebalancing the whole game for 5 or 6 party will take a while and the result will be imperfect anyway.



True, but it is better then nothing unfortunately.
Posted By: KingTiki Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 08:53 AM
DnD 5e is balanced around a 4 player party, so I think this is fine. What I dont like is that you again seem to lose some of your party members after act 1.
Posted By: jonn Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 09:34 AM
Personally I'd trust that if Larian want to make & balance the game around a 4 person group, then that is the optimal way to go. In fact I'd be concerned that if enough people keep clamouring for a 6 man group then they will end up using time & resources to cater to them, to the detriment of other aspects of the overall experience.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 10:35 AM
Originally Posted by jonn
Personally I'd trust that if Larian want to make & balance the game around a 4 person group, then that is the optimal way to go. In fact I'd be concerned that if enough people keep clamouring for a 6 man group then they will end up using time & resources to cater to them, to the detriment of other aspects of the overall experience.

Sounds like the marrying of a baseless assumption and a pointless concern.
Tweaking the UI to adjust for six characters wouldn't be that much work (especially if they also take the chances to improve party control, which is sorely needed regardless of party expansion) and encounters are still in the middle of balancing/tweaking, so better address the idea of a bigger party now rather than later down in production.


Posted By: Sieben Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:03 AM
+1
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:05 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by jonn
Personally I'd trust that if Larian want to make & balance the game around a 4 person group, then that is the optimal way to go. In fact I'd be concerned that if enough people keep clamouring for a 6 man group then they will end up using time & resources to cater to them, to the detriment of other aspects of the overall experience.

Sounds like the marrying of a baseless assumption and a pointless concern.
Tweaking the UI to adjust for six characters wouldn't be that much work (especially if they also take the chances to improve party control, which is sorely needed regardless of party expansion) and encounters are still in the middle of balancing/tweaking, so better address the idea of a bigger party now rather than later down in production.



Exactly , great point and summarize what needs to be done and planned right now before even a biger update on EA.

By the way people saying they can just wait for modders, I feel this is a really lazy approach on Larian if they rely on community and third parties to help them on their own game, as well as if they do that the game can't be balanced well for those who wish to experience a true D&D experience with a party.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:08 AM
More than anything, "modding" shoudl be reserved for fringe little ideas that are a matter of taste.
When the overwhelming majority of your community seems to be in favor of a solution over an other and the full release is still possibly even more than a year away, maybe it's time to start reconsidering what should be part of the core design.
Posted By: anstand Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:08 AM
I personally would love to see party sizes of six as well, just for the sake of it, but when even the official DnD adventures are tailored to 4-man parties, it will be hard to convince Larian to do otherwise. Besides that, balancing might be even more troublesome for them, plus with only like six to ten companions at the end, parties might look very samey every time you start a new game.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:12 AM
Originally Posted by anstand
Besides that, balancing might be even more troublesome for them, plus with only like six to ten companions at the end, parties might look very samey every time you start a new game.

I donìt get this argument.
Aside for the fact that "only six companions" would be disappointing regardless of party size, if anything reducing the number of slots is going to make me even more wary of experimenting with the occasional odd class/specialization. When you have only four slots, each one of them becomes even more valuable to cover for a key role, rather than trying fancy combinations and synergies.
Posted By: Alon Binyamin Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:18 AM
I actually like the 4 party member limit. Bigger parties will slowdown combat (which is already an issue), increase the time spent managing all party members (this is a wide issue I have where I try to create my own character and 'connect' with it but I spend just as much effort managing all other characters) and will make every other party member less valuable. Just a personal preference, but I feel 4 is just fine.

I also like the fact that I might not have all bases covered with my party. If I don't have a rouge I can't do rouge things. Great. It adds to the story, force me to make certain choices. The limit number of characters actually adds to the verity of plays I will have over time.

Of course I can always choose to only take 4 characters (even if the games allows for 6) but I would bet the game would be balanced and design for a full party. It's not the perfect solution, but I can live with it if it's important to other people.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:21 AM
Agreed Tuco. I mentioned somewhere that playing as a ranger I'm not even thinking about taking Shadowheart and Lae'zel out of my party because with how much trouble I'm having with combat currently, I would have no chance without them. I might trade one of them out for a paladin if such a companion were introduced, but if they don't provide more companions that can fill a tank or healer role in the party then effectively that only leaves me with one extra slot I can devote to another companion.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:25 AM
Originally Posted by KingTiki
DnD 5e is balanced around a 4 player party


weak argument. this is a video game not dnd and there is already its own balance. in addition, there will be difficulty levels so balance need to be adjusted to them all.

so 5-6 party is a must

Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:26 AM
Originally Posted by Alon Binyamin
I actually like the 4 party member limit. Bigger parties will slowdown combat .

We already addressed this: in short, that's not true at all.
First, because if anything more party members would "clean up" the enemies quicker.
Second, because making room for 6 party members doesn't mean you CAN'T still play wioth 4, 2, or even solo if you want (surprise surprise, that's exactly what some people did with the past two Baldur's Gate games).
The mere fact you are splitting exp among less party members automatically address party scalability making smaller parties level up faster.

Posted By: Uncle Lester Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:36 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco

The mere fact you are splitting exp among less party members automatically address party scalability making smaller parties level up faster.



Have they changed it? I haven't played EA, but iirc in the gameplay demos XP seemed to be the same regardless of party size.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:39 AM
Originally Posted by Uncle Lester

Have they changed it? I haven't played EA, but iirc in the gameplay demos XP seemed to be the same regardless of party size.

No, they didn't change it yet, but that's precisely ONE area where they could easily address the problem as a whole.
I'm fine with companions auto-leveling to keep even with you, but they could at least make that the number of party members decides how much exp each one gets.
You know, precisely like in the old Baldur's Gate games.

Posted By: Rouoko Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:45 AM
Currently game present us that option:
1 Thief
1 Cleric
1 Fighter
1 Mage
1 Warlock

We have lack of options in Baldur's Gate 1 or 2 there was more space in party and mroe characters to chose. In Divinity Original Sin and BG 3 we are limited to 4 character but in DO we got option to change every of character in our party from scrach almost everywhere. So if Larian want stay with 4 characters we shoud get a lot more avaible characters in later game. Baldur's Gate 2 for example allow player to join 5 from 17 avaible characters to his party. This was enought to make really ncie setups for every kind of player.
Posted By: jonn Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:53 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by jonn
Personally I'd trust that if Larian want to make & balance the game around a 4 person group, then that is the optimal way to go. In fact I'd be concerned that if enough people keep clamouring for a 6 man group then they will end up using time & resources to cater to them, to the detriment of other aspects of the overall experience.

Sounds like the marrying of a baseless assumption and a pointless concern.
Tweaking the UI to adjust for six characters wouldn't be that much work (especially if they also take the chances to improve party control, which is sorely needed regardless of party expansion) and encounters are still in the middle of balancing/tweaking, so better address the idea of a bigger party now rather than later down in production.




It's not just tweaking the UI though is it, entire maps are designed around encounters and battles. They would have to add quite a few more companions into the game too, otherwise you'd just end up taking the same ones every time. Which means designing, writing, coding, voice acting. I think there were 16 potential companions in BG 2 so if you're looking for this level of variability then that means tripling the amount of work they've done so far in terms of the above.

Just for the record, if this is something that Larian already have in the pipeline, then great, I'm all for it. As long as they can achieve it while still having enough time and resources to do everything else properly.
Posted By: Nyanko Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 11:57 AM
Originally Posted by Rouoko
Currently game present us that option:
1 Thief
1 Cleric
1 Fighter
1 Mage
1 Warlock

We have lack of options in Baldur's Gate 1 or 2 there was more space in party and mroe characters to chose. In Divinity Original Sin and BG 3 we are limited to 4 character but in DO we got option to change every of character in our party from scrach almost everywhere. So if Larian want stay with 4 characters we shoud get a lot more avaible characters in later game. Baldur's Gate 2 for example allow player to join 5 from 17 avaible characters to his party. This was enought to make really ncie setups for every kind of player.


I believe it will be the case in the future. Swen talked about it in an interview, and they definitely intend to allow the change of classes for companions.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 12:04 PM
Originally Posted by Nyanko

I believe it will be the case in the future. Swen talked about it in an interview, and they definitely intend to allow the change of classes for companions.

Absolutely not a fan of "changing classes for companions", by the way.
Not in D&D, for sure.

I feel like their class and eventually their special abilities should be an integral part of their identity, not some accessory dressing that could be changed on a whim.
I'd obviously prefer just having more companions to select from. Then again Larian is making this exceptionally hard for itself with this terrible idea of making "every companion also a possible Origin story", which inflates the cost of creating each one considerably. Something that I hope they'll reconsider.

I'd take having a large selection of interesting characters over "having just few of them and being able to replay the game in their role" any day, frankly.



Posted By: firebird71 Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 12:04 PM
I agree completely. The 4 members big party feels too limiting and essentially doesn't allow for creativity or experimentation.
Posted By: Alon Binyamin Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 12:05 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Alon Binyamin
I actually like the 4 party member limit. Bigger parties will slowdown combat .

We already addressed this: in short, that's not true at all.
First, because if anything more party members would "clean up" the enemies quicker.
Second, because making room for 6 party members doesn't mean you CAN'T still play wioth 4, 2, or even solo if you want (surprise surprise, that's exactly what some people did with the past two Baldur's Gate games).
The mere fact you are splitting exp among less party members automatically address party scalability making smaller parties level up faster.



Fair point.
But I have a feeling that if we have a party of 6, they'll just add more enemies to encounters slowing it down again.

It's just I'm afraid that if the game would be designed for a party of 6, playing with 4 would require me to cheese some aspects. But it really is a matter of design. For example, if the fact that I can pick locks will drive me to a point where I have use Knock and rest every 10 minutes that would't be fun. But, if it means I can advance in the game reasonably but have to pass on some tasty loot or shortcuts because I couldn't pick the lock - great. It means my next playthrough, with a rouge, will be different.

As I said, I'm ok with it if it's important to people - I'll work around it.

On a side note, I personally find it hard not to "do everything", open every chest, visit every room, etc.. when I can do it (due to having all options available) - but it does kill the enjoyment from future playthroughs. I like it when the game forces me to choose.
Posted By: Rouoko Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 12:11 PM
Originally Posted by Nyanko
I believe it will be the case in the future. Swen talked about it in an interview, and they definitely intend to allow the change of classes for companions.



This will make game worst. What If I change Gale class to paladin or Wyll to thief? This will mess character design.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 12:18 PM
Yeah, allowing some limited multi-classing where it makes sense for companions would be okay probably, but fully changing classes would actually break the story, especially since for some of them their class is tied directly into their stories. Shadowheart being a cleric of Shar is her big thing, as is Gale being a wizard and Wyll a Warlock. Astarion probably has a bit more wiggle room since "rogue" has always been kind of vague out of world, but even then you can only change him so far before the story breaks completely.
Posted By: fixxer Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 01:08 PM
I hope everyone that advocates for an increased party size also understands the implications on basically every single aspect of the entire game regarding balance.

This would in-effect basically cake-walk significant majority, if not the entire game.

Go play DOS2 with the standard 4 characters on the hardest difficulty (Tactician) then get a mod that adds only even ONE extra character and realise how trivial the game instantly becomes.


There's something to be said for challenge and less-is-more. If they've made/making the game around a party of 4, something like two extra characters, on top of being hugely imbalanced to the entire game, also becomes a massive micro-management of the party. Not to mention the various compounded-effects on the dialogue and story.

Going from 4 to 6 is where you get to that point when you keep folding a paper to the point you can't fold it any more. I honestly just cannot see this happening. As much as people want this to be DND, it's just not.


There are so many variables with even just a party of 4, basically adding 2 more you'd effectively be quadrupling the work required in the game to facilitate this. Entire re-balancing, entire interactions and a whole complex myriad of sequences, dialogue, events, triggers.

I have a belief that they would have come to a decision of 4 by purpose, by choice and with good reason. We may not know it, and maybe it's not set in stone, but i'm almost certain the discussion came up of Party-size at some point and i guarantee you the size of 4 was selected for a lot of reasons. To go back on that, i just can't see it happening. Not this far along...
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 01:19 PM
Originally Posted by fixxer
I hope everyone that advocates for an increased party size also understands the implications on basically every single aspect of the entire game regarding balance.

This would in-effect basically cake-walk significant majority, if not the entire game.

Go play DOS2 with the standard 4 characters on the hardest difficulty (Tactician) then get a mod that adds only even ONE extra character and realise how trivial the game instantly becomes.


There's something to be said for challenge and less-is-more. If they've made/making the game around a party of 4, something like two extra characters, on top of being hugely imbalanced to the entire game, also becomes a massive micro-management of the party. Not to mention the various compounded-effects on the dialogue and story.

Going from 4 to 6 is where you get to that point when you keep folding a paper to the point you can't fold it any more. I honestly just cannot see this happening. As much as people want this to be DND, it's just not.


The game is actually called Baldur's Gate instead of Divinity Original Sin so yeah IT IS D&D and that's how they should focus it. About challenges of course right now on low levels there aren't many hard encounters (even the goblin part is ok) but do remember unlike any game made by them D&D has a lot of monters, a LOT to choose and design encounters. With some very epic and legendary ones specially on the late game, ones that actually need you to have a variety of characters like bard to support using Countercharm or Hypnotic Pattern, or a Paladin with their auras, A Wizard to cast powerfull spells and control, as well as a Cleric to Control/Damage/Heal and of course a Rougue to Search for traps/disarm and lockpick, and should I mention a Barbarian or Fighter as well to Wreck Havoc at the enemy lines, and a Ranger to shooting things down and dealing tons of damage?

Stop thinking like DOS cause it might be Larian but it ain't DOS. This is D&D and every class brings something to the table and being restricted to 4 is actually damaging in the aspect of supporting each other in the mid and late game.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 01:22 PM
Originally Posted by fixxer
I hope everyone that advocates for an increased party size also understands the implications on basically every single aspect of the entire game regarding balance.

Yes, we absolutely do.
Thanks for your concern.

And "balance" at the current state of development is such a bogus thing to worry about.
Encounters will still need to be fine tuned for more than a year to come, regardless of any change to the party size.
Posted By: Crewell Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 01:44 PM
A party of six would feel much more in inline with D&D on pen and paper. I can't help but feel the 4 party limit is kind of a Divinity carryover.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 01:52 PM
Originally Posted by TheWhiteRabbit
Imma add my 2 cents to this conversation and say no, stick with 4. MAYBE 5, but thats absolutely it.

All this nonsense that players are saying about conversations should be with everyone involved, huge parties, and what have you. This is 2020, games are no longer easy, or handed to you. You have to actually -PLAY- them, and that means making, (everyone duck!), decisions!

Everyone can talk in one conversation? Offering their rolls to conversational choices? Why have choices at all then? You are loading the dice. How is this even fun when you "win" every conversation? Why. Roll. The. Dice. At. All.

6 member party? Why choose what classes you want to bring that would be best for whatever situation? You aren't making any decisions at this point, you are just freerolling and claiming a win for something you didn't Actually win in the first place because you started a combat with a loaded out squad.

To be completely fair to the OP, whom for the record is the exact same age as I am, down to the month, which is creepy and cool, their suggestion is essentially the creating of a different mode, which also includes a warning that this makes the game easier (I would use the word 'free', but I digress), I don't hate having more options, nor will I ever, but this distinction MUST be made.

Your argument about been able to have everything and leave nothing behind removing any choices is very valid in EA where we have 5 companions and 6 classes to choose from meaning if you was a ranger you would have everything, which is one of the reasons I said focus on the game as is for now and add it at launch. And we already know there are another 6 classes planned for launch Barbarian, Bard, Druid, Monk, Paladin & Sorcerer. If they make 12 companions you'd be leaving half of them behind and two thirds if the make 18, I don't think they have said exactly how many companions there will be so I have pulled those numbers out of thin air. I'm not opposed to the four player party and I'm glad that the people who like it can pay the way they want, and people who like solo challenge runs are catered for since you don't have to recruit anyone if you don't want to, but those of us who like six player parties have no real choice implemented but Larian themselves, we have to rely on modders and risk it breaking the game in unexpected ways beyond balance. To me it is immersion breaking to leave highly capable adventurers behind at camp while I face all the danger myself so I will only be recruiting as many people fit into my party, leaving plenty to discover on subsequent playthroughs.
Oh and I'm July 3rd if that makes any difference to you.

Originally Posted by jayn23
Just to add my point of view to the discussion, while like most of you guys I would preferer a party of 6 for multiple reasons most were mentioned before so no point in going over them again.
Larian has already acknowledged that many fans want a 6 player party and they still decided to go for a 4 party build because they felt it was the "sweet spot" so asking them to change to 6 party and rebalance the whole game in very unlikely, I think we should be more realistic with our requests and go with what the OP suggested - they continue to follow there vision and create the game for a 4 man party, add a option in menus to unlock a 6 man party with a pop up notifying you that the game was balanced for 4 man party and difficulty level is untested for this build.
this has a much higher chance of happening if they see the demand for it.

and for those thinking that what's the point of a 6 man party if combat is balanced for 4 - well i can give you at least one laugh
after act 1 we need to choose who moves on with us to act2 and who is left behind, this way we get to take more companions with us - more companions quests to do, better RP and banter etc..

I normally play games for story and not challenge so I usually pick an easier difficulty, and if a 6 man mode is not balanced I would probably play it on hard difficulty instead of normal to get the base level challenge. Yes a six man party might not be as challenging as four a man but there will be a fair bit we can do to offset that with difficulty settings ourselves without Larian having to do anything other than implement a setting to be able to increase party size. People who like challenge and limitations are catered for already since they can do self imposed challenges, that's why nuzlock is a thing, people like to be challenged, but someone who wants a larger party to take a less cookie cutter and more divers party has no options, and no I don't believe "let the modders fix it" is a valid response. Larian is big enough with enough staff that it is something they should be able to implement themselves without relying on their customers to fix their game or add features that large portions of their fan base want since it is a feature of the two previous games this is a sequel to.
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 02:06 PM
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk

and no I don't believe "let the modders fix it" is a valid response. Larian is big enough with enough staff that it is something they should be able to implement themselves without relying on their customers to fix their game or add features that large portions of their fan base want since it is a feature of the two previous games this is a sequel to.


Yeah exactly what I said earlier, this approach is just really lazy. As a developer myself (altough not in the gaming industry) I can't imagine leaving solutions my costumer is actually asking for them to develop. We are on sprint 1 of the open beta/ Early Acess in which new requisites might be added so yeah they should listen to the base instead and try to adapt.

One could argument gamers as costumers are a multitude of players so there'll always be two sides, but IF you actually made a poll or used Sentiment analysis with machine learning you're most certain to get the most you need from the steam/larian/GOG foruns to really make it so the fans of Baldur's Gate actually see this as another game of the franchise instead of another DOS.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 02:15 PM
Originally Posted by Kal Spiro
Four party members is classic DnD video game size. Considering how cake fights have been so far with just four, I can't imagine how broken six might be.

All the classic D&D games I remeber where six party members, the Eye of the Beholder games was four player created and two NPCs, the Baldur's Gate games where one player created and six NPCs, the Icewind Dale games where six player created, I never played Temple of Elemental Evil but I believe that was six characters as well and most of these have been held up as the gold standard for various people over the decades.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 02:17 PM
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk

All the classic D&D games I remeber where six party members, the Eye of the Beholder games was four player created and two NPCs, the Baldur's Gate games where one player created and six NPCs, the Icewind Dale games where six player created, I never played Temple of Elemental Evil but I believe that was six characters as well and most of these have been held up as the gold standard for various people over the decades.

Temple of Elemental Evil allowed parties to baloon up to EIGHT members, if charisma/reputation allowed it.
Ironically, in contrast to people saying "six men wouldn't work with turns", that was made manageable precisely by the game being turn-based.
Posted By: Fuz77 Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 02:28 PM
+1

A 4-people party is extremely limited and forces you into boring compositions. 6 people would be ideal.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 02:29 PM
Originally Posted by HeavensBells
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by jonn
Personally I'd trust that if Larian want to make & balance the game around a 4 person group, then that is the optimal way to go. In fact I'd be concerned that if enough people keep clamouring for a 6 man group then they will end up using time & resources to cater to them, to the detriment of other aspects of the overall experience.

Sounds like the marrying of a baseless assumption and a pointless concern.
Tweaking the UI to adjust for six characters wouldn't be that much work (especially if they also take the chances to improve party control, which is sorely needed regardless of party expansion) and encounters are still in the middle of balancing/tweaking, so better address the idea of a bigger party now rather than later down in production.



Exactly , great point and summarize what needs to be done and planned right now before even a biger update on EA.

By the way people saying they can just wait for modders, I feel this is a really lazy approach on Larian if they rely on community and third parties to help them on their own game, as well as if they do that the game can't be balanced well for those who wish to experience a true D&D experience with a party.

Originally Posted by Tuco
More than anything, "modding" shoudl be reserved for fringe little ideas that are a matter of taste.
When the overwhelming majority of your community seems to be in favor of a solution over an other and the full release is still possibly even more than a year away, maybe it's time to start reconsidering what should be part of the core design.

Agreed, Larian Is big enough now with enough staff that they should not have to rely on modders to implement features that large portions of their fan base want, and it's something that was in both previous titles this is a sequel to. Restricting to four people in a party restricts what you can do with party members as well. You can't do couples like in the originals, that means you can't do stuff like they did with Khalid and Jaheira, no Eldoth and Skie and no Minsc and Dynaheir.
Posted By: Sinandross Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 02:32 PM
For me 4 members is just fine.
Posted By: kitnal Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 03:06 PM
my only problem is that it will make the combat and loot hard to scale as everything will get so much easier, and you can't just up the HP and/or damage of creatures
Posted By: SecondAchaius Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 03:47 PM
I remember reading a post from Larian that Act 1 will be the only Act where you have all companions and that you will have to choose just like in Divinity OS 2 who you take.

"Will companions be interchangeable during long rest?
Yes, at the start of your adventure your recruited companions will be at camp when not in the adventuring party, and can be swapped in and out at camp. Just like friends in real life! After the first act however you are going to have to commit, also just like in real life."
Posted By: Takamori Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 03:53 PM
6 party size for more chaos and tactics in my combat please!
+1 for OP
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 03:53 PM
If you actually know how D&D DMs design encounters, as I've stated twice in this post, balancing to 4 or 6 people is actually easy. Each monster on the Monsters Manual has something called CR - CR tells you the upper maximum difficulty of the monster, for example the famous Illithid Mind Flayer Arcanist has a CR of 8, meaning a party of 4 players lvl 6 could take 1 on with hard difficulty while a party of 6 lvl 6 could take it easy.

CR is a stat given to monster to balance them throughout the levels of the game as well, so goblins being CR 1/4 are usual enemies on lower levels while Giants vary from CR 5-13 and most Devils are CR8. Of course translating CR to a game will not be 1:1 but balancing encounter for a 6 party is not just upping HP/DMG/Number of Enemies.

Actually balancing for a 6 man party introduce more possibilities that, on Epic encounter like a Lich instead of only having the Lich they can actually summon a Beholder and the party can deal with it, making those unique encounter so much more memorable than just killing 1 powerful enemy.

But how can I add more monsters and difficulty? Late game Monsters are great enemies, most of them have really great stats, are immune to lots of stuff, have unique abilities and acess to spells as well as our characters.

Now IF I'm restricted to the 4 model party (Melee/Tank, Healer, Magic User, Rogue) I can't balance the combat well enough. IF I'm allowed to have 2 more spots I can add so much more to those encounters, I can have another Caster Character focusing entirely on Contolling and Dispelling and the Cleric can go smash and not have to focus on being only healer so it won't have to use most of it's action/bonus action healing.

By the way, most buffs are Concentration based, if you're so limited with a 4 man party probably you won't be able to get much more than a Haste and a Bless in fight since you can only hold one Concentration Spell, meaning our buffs are really limited like this.
Posted By: jonn Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 05:12 PM
Originally Posted by HeavensBells
If you actually know how D&D DMs design encounters, as I've stated twice in this post, balancing to 4 or 6 people is actually easy. Each monster on the Monsters Manual has something called CR - CR tells you the upper maximum difficulty of the monster, for example the famous Illithid Mind Flayer Arcanist has a CR of 8, meaning a party of 4 players lvl 6 could take 1 on with hard difficulty while a party of 6 lvl 6 could take it easy.

CR is a stat given to monster to balance them throughout the levels of the game as well, so goblins being CR 1/4 are usual enemies on lower levels while Giants vary from CR 5-13 and most Devils are CR8. Of course translating CR to a game will not be 1:1 but balancing encounter for a 6 party is not just upping HP/DMG/Number of Enemies.

Actually balancing for a 6 man party introduce more possibilities that, on Epic encounter like a Lich instead of only having the Lich they can actually summon a Beholder and the party can deal with it, making those unique encounter so much more memorable than just killing 1 powerful enemy.

But how can I add more monsters and difficulty? Late game Monsters are great enemies, most of them have really great stats, are immune to lots of stuff, have unique abilities and acess to spells as well as our characters.

Now IF I'm restricted to the 4 model party (Melee/Tank, Healer, Magic User, Rogue) I can't balance the combat well enough. IF I'm allowed to have 2 more spots I can add so much more to those encounters, I can have another Caster Character focusing entirely on Contolling and Dispelling and the Cleric can go smash and not have to focus on being only healer so it won't have to use most of it's action/bonus action healing.

By the way, most buffs are Concentration based, if you're so limited with a 4 man party probably you won't be able to get much more than a Haste and a Bless in fight since you can only hold one Concentration Spell, meaning our buffs are really limited like this.


This isn't a tabletop game where all you have to do is recalculate some stats and do extra dice rolls. The game has literally been designed from the ground up with a 4 character party in mind. The size and shape of the map, the environments, pathways, encounters/combat zones. This would all have to be overhauled in order to optimise the experience.

This is a new game with new challenges, and all I'm hearing is people saying "but I like to do X with Y character class" well now you'll have to figure out a new way to approach it!
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 05:17 PM
Originally Posted by jonn


This isn't a tabletop game where all you have to do is recalculate some stats and do extra dice rolls. The game has literally been designed from the ground up with a 4 character party in mind. The size and shape of the map, the environments, pathways, encounters/combat zones. This would all have to be overhauled in order to optimise the experience.

This is a new game with new challenges, and all I'm hearing is people saying "but I like to do X with Y character class" well now you'll have to figure out a new way to approach it!


Well simply in your own words: The game CAN be designed from the ground up with a 6 character party in mind. The size and shape of the map, the environments, pathways, encounters/combat zones. Its still EA.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 07:04 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Nyanko

I believe it will be the case in the future. Swen talked about it in an interview, and they definitely intend to allow the change of classes for companions.

Absolutely not a fan of "changing classes for companions", by the way.
Not in D&D, for sure.

I feel like their class and eventually their special abilities should be an integral part of their identity, not some accessory dressing that could be changed on a whim.
I'd obviously prefer just having more companions to select from. Then again Larian is making this exceptionally hard for itself with this terrible idea of making "every companion also a possible Origin story", which inflates the cost of creating each one considerably. Something that I hope they'll reconsider.

I'd take having a large selection of interesting characters over "having just few of them and being able to replay the game in their role" any day, frankly.

I have to agree that changing any characters class be it companion or the player mid game would just feel wrong and is something I would never do. The only time I could ever see me using such a feature is as a respec option so I could alter some of their stats and abilities within the same class depending on how Larion built them or if I fudged them in levelling.

There will probably be twelve origin characters at launch, one for each planned class and that's probably enough, your right if they make to many origin characters it's too much unnecessary work, but then I would also expect more companions that can be recruited in later chapters to give multiple options to pick from for the different classes who will have different personalities, alignments and skillsets.
Posted By: VhexLambda Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 07:20 PM
+1 5 or 6
Posted By: Azarielle Re: Party Size Discussion - 09/10/20 07:35 PM
Agreed BG has always been 6 - it's just so much more fun! We'll surely that will be one of the first mods to appear 😉
Posted By: MasterRoo09 Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:20 AM
I agree with 100%.

I'll send my thread to add to your point of view.

http://forums.larian.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=685704#Post685704
Posted By: Faulkner Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:27 AM
Please make it a 6 party members. I don't want to be stuck with a NPC I don't like just because I can't work around kicking him out and being creative with my party composition.
Posted By: QuietCountryCafe Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:30 AM
Hard agree. A six man party would absolutely decimate every encounter currently, though. Would need some rebalancing.
Posted By: Afaslizo Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:32 AM
You only need two or three in your party in most circumstances as a rogue can solo significant parts of the game (as of now) and the rest are just meatbags to slow the enemies down or offer targets for an AI which does not know how to prioritize. You need their passives for some checks or a rogue if you are not one yourself. I guess your character, a rogue and a caster for surfaces, speaking with animals and a bit of cc could take down most of the game with patience.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:33 AM
Regarding rebalancing of difficulty, the key thing to remember is that they're going to do that anyway. They've said that they have systems in place to see where players die and how often so that they know how they need to adjust difficulty. So if they're going to change the party size, it has to be now because then they can simply factor that into the rebalancing.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:38 AM
Originally Posted by Afaslizo
You only need two or three in your party in most circumstances as a rogue can solo significant parts of the game (as of now) and the rest are just meatbags to slow the enemies down or offer targets for an AI which does not know how to prioritize. You need their passives for some checks or a rogue if you are not one yourself. I guess your character, a rogue and a caster for surfaces, speaking with animals and a bit of cc could take down most of the game with patience.

Not really sure what you are exactly trying to say, but let's be clear of one thing upfront: wanting a six-members party has nothing to do with the idea that "you NEED it" to beat the game.
It's about enjoying the variety of characters, builds and possible party compositions that comes with it a lot more.

Not to mention being able to carry on more companion questlines during a campaign.
Posted By: MasterRoo09 Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:38 AM
Originally Posted by Alodar
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.
Not only would you be adding 2 more bodies on the players side you would need to add additional monsters to make combats challenging.
Six players could mean as many as 6 more turns for combats and that's just too much.

You really need to explore the backgrounds in 5E. A dedicated thief is no longer necessary. With the Urchin background you gain proficiency in both stealth and Sleight of hand which allows any Dex character to sneak and pick locks/remove traps.

There are lots of options, and the smaller the party the more re-playable the game and the more strategy you have to employ.

There has been no combat in Early Access that I've thought that I needed two more characters to be more effective


Six players would slow down combat, decrease re-playablity, and lessen the strategy required to succeed.
That's a hard no from me.

(If it's something you folks truly want you can Mod it in after full release.)


I've never had any of those issues that you listed in the original BG series nor would it be a problem for BG3. Players would still have options, still would be re-playable and still would have to strategize since you have more lives on the line. If players don't want to take more time during combat since combat has been sped up from DoS (a few extra seconds on an extra character or 2 would not take an eternity). If players want more of a challenge, they can still use 4 or less party members.

I understand your point with the Urchin background but that still won't replace a rogue. Also, that's now how I wanted to play my wizard and roleplay the character. Still have to have rogue in my party and I can't change the companions backgrounds.

It's an option not set in stone. I have to add, I thought Goblin party encounter was pretty goofy with 20 enemies and only 4 of my party members. You're right, it probably would've been easier for me have that extra party member or two but I would've killed them faster.
Posted By: MasterRoo09 Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:43 AM
Originally Posted by HeavensBells
If you actually know how D&D DMs design encounters, as I've stated twice in this post, balancing to 4 or 6 people is actually easy. Each monster on the Monsters Manual has something called CR - CR tells you the upper maximum difficulty of the monster, for example the famous Illithid Mind Flayer Arcanist has a CR of 8, meaning a party of 4 players lvl 6 could take 1 on with hard difficulty while a party of 6 lvl 6 could take it easy.

CR is a stat given to monster to balance them throughout the levels of the game as well, so goblins being CR 1/4 are usual enemies on lower levels while Giants vary from CR 5-13 and most Devils are CR8. Of course translating CR to a game will not be 1:1 but balancing encounter for a 6 party is not just upping HP/DMG/Number of Enemies.

Actually balancing for a 6 man party introduce more possibilities that, on Epic encounter like a Lich instead of only having the Lich they can actually summon a Beholder and the party can deal with it, making those unique encounter so much more memorable than just killing 1 powerful enemy.

But how can I add more monsters and difficulty? Late game Monsters are great enemies, most of them have really great stats, are immune to lots of stuff, have unique abilities and acess to spells as well as our characters.

Now IF I'm restricted to the 4 model party (Melee/Tank, Healer, Magic User, Rogue) I can't balance the combat well enough. IF I'm allowed to have 2 more spots I can add so much more to those encounters, I can have another Caster Character focusing entirely on Contolling and Dispelling and the Cleric can go smash and not have to focus on being only healer so it won't have to use most of it's action/bonus action healing.

By the way, most buffs are Concentration based, if you're so limited with a 4 man party probably you won't be able to get much more than a Haste and a Bless in fight since you can only hold one Concentration Spell, meaning our buffs are really limited like this.


+1
Well said! 6 is characters are going to be very useful for those encounters just like original BG 1 and 2.
Players can still have that choice for 4 characters but are going to have really hard time. Like you said, those concentration spells are important.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:50 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Afaslizo
You only need two or three in your party in most circumstances as a rogue can solo significant parts of the game (as of now) and the rest are just meatbags to slow the enemies down or offer targets for an AI which does not know how to prioritize. You need their passives for some checks or a rogue if you are not one yourself. I guess your character, a rogue and a caster for surfaces, speaking with animals and a bit of cc could take down most of the game with patience.

Not really sure what you are exactly trying to say, but let's be clear of one thing upfront: wanting a six-members party has nothing to do with the idea that "you NEED it" to beat the game.
It's about enjoying the variety of characters, builds and possible party compositions that comes with it a lot more.

Not to mention being able to carry on more companion questlines during a campaign.


This is an excellent point. History shows that in a lot of cRPGs if you have sufficient mastery of the system you can beat most games solo. The point is that the vast majority of players don't have that mastery and aren't interested in achieving it. What they want is to be able to enjoy a wider variety of companions and companion interaction without feeling like they need to be experts in the system. I'm very much a beginning and need a tank and healer in my party. I happen to like Shadowheart and Lae'zel but I don't want to be limited to them and/or whatever other tank/healer they introduce into the game and one other character. A game like this should be forgiving enough that a person with basic familiarity with cRPGs who learns everything the game teaches and nothing else can get through the game with a feeling of solid challenge while still allowing them the potential to experience the majority of what the game has to offer. Not that they absolutely will experience everything, but that no matter what class they choose, they CAN experience everything. I'm someone with several years of experience with cRPGs, a modest understanding of D&D and I certainly do not think I could make it through the game without Shadowheart and Lae'zel.
Posted By: Afaslizo Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 11:00 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Not really sure what you are exactly trying to say, but let's be clear of one thing upfront: wanting a six-members party has nothing to do with the idea that "you NEED it" to beat the game.
It's about enjoying the variety of characters, builds and possible party compositions that comes with it a lot more.

Not to mention being able to carry on more companion questlines during a campaign.

The last point is viable I guess.

I found the majority of companions in Baldur's Gate 2 (in 1 they had a lot less personality) boring or badly written even in my teenage years so I never cared much about them and some people are just getting on your nerves. The Enhanced Edition is even worse. The only rpg where I love the companions is Planescape Torment. Mask of the Betrayer is a close second though. I guess being a Pen&Paper player dulls a lot of enjoyment for me because pc games never reach up to the experience with your real life group and then shallow or bad writing ruins it even more. If the evil characters would not be stupid evil (which only the shar priestess has displayed so far) I would care for them more. If the the good characters would be multi-dimensional I would care for them more. That is the problem with DnDs alignement system and why it is ultimately bullshit. If you want an evil character he should at least be more like Bayaz from Joe Abercrombie's books (First Law triology etc.) or even better Black from A Practical Guide to Evil.

At this point a premade three char group offers more depth because you can imagine their banter, be it witty, playful or funny. But I guess that is the roleplayer in me because it puts my imagination above the failing character immersion with badly written chars who I would not take along me unter any realistic circumstances because they are shallow, stupid and unimaginative.
Posted By: Afaslizo Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 11:10 AM
Originally Posted by Gray Ghost
I'm someone with several years of experience with cRPGs, a modest understanding of D&D and I certainly do not think I could make it through the game without Shadowheart and Lae'zel.
I killed Lae on my second character because I hated her on my first try because she is a stupid evil rage machine. Shadowheart is useful for acting as a bind tank and I take her along for that (she got Lae's plate armor) but her spells fail most of the time or do not matter so I don't really care for her(her personality is at least a bit wittier than the vampire torture porn fetichist and the aforementioned stupid evil warrior so I do not cringe every time she opens her mouth). The wizard is stupid but useful for crowd control. The warlock is useful for starting encounters. I can't bring myself to care for them beyond their carrying capacity and body mass to trick the AI in wasting turns they should use to take me down.

The game is beautiful, the plot interesting and I love cthulhumanoids but the party has far less personality combined than the red prince from Divinity Original Sin 2 and I loved that you could play the original characters in multiplayer. If that would be possible in this game I guess I could even like stupid Githyanki and emo vampire because playing as them might endear them to me.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 11:17 AM
That's all well and good Afaslizo, but that isn't really relevant to my point.
Posted By: Afaslizo Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 11:23 AM
Originally Posted by Gray Ghost
That's all well and good Afaslizo, but that isn't really relevant to my point.

So your point is difficulty/optimization which you want to counter with a larger body mass. It seems to me a better way would be an indepth tutorial teaching you about mobility, stealth, surfaces and utility spells in a way the ship prologue fails to do. Imagine learning all these different aspects which you claim you do not have and do not get to progress and learning them. Do you need the bigger party still if you would know how to apply all these things?
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 11:24 AM
His point is that how much do you like each one of the current characters is not the topic at hand here, I guess.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 11:39 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco
His point is that how much do you like each one of the current characters is not the topic at hand here, I guess.


Yes, that was my point.

Originally Posted by Afaslizo
Originally Posted by Gray Ghost
That's all well and good Afaslizo, but that isn't really relevant to my point.

So your point is difficulty/optimization which you want to counter with a larger body mass. It seems to me a better way would be an indepth tutorial teaching you about mobility, stealth, surfaces and utility spells in a way the ship prologue fails to do. Imagine learning all these different aspects which you claim you do not have and do not get to progress and learning them. Do you need the bigger party still if you would know how to apply all these things?


I think that a better tutorial is sorely needed for this game, that's true but even ignoring the fact that there's still going to be a learning curve before players are going to be implementing all the tools at their disposal to the fullest, a game shouldn't be balanced around the minimum a player needs to make it through. Even as someone who has been playing cRPGs for close to a decade, I doubt I'd be playing this game at the level where I don't need a tank and healer until at least my third playthrough and I shouldn't have to wait that long to be able to experience a wider variety of charcater stories and interactions.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 12:23 PM
6 characters don't slow combats... Combats are faster if you can kill ennemies... faster...
Posted By: Zandilar Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 12:48 PM
Originally Posted by HeavensBells
Originally Posted by jonn


This isn't a tabletop game where all you have to do is recalculate some stats and do extra dice rolls. The game has literally been designed from the ground up with a 4 character party in mind. The size and shape of the map, the environments, pathways, encounters/combat zones. This would all have to be overhauled in order to optimise the experience.

This is a new game with new challenges, and all I'm hearing is people saying "but I like to do X with Y character class" well now you'll have to figure out a new way to approach it!


Well simply in your own words: The game CAN be designed from the ground up with a 6 character party in mind. The size and shape of the map, the environments, pathways, encounters/combat zones. Its still EA.


EA is way too late in the development cycle for this. We are talking about a beta build that Larian felt confident enough to open up to the public. You only go to open beta when you have everything finalized and ready for testing. Sure, they can change some things around, but the sort of change you're talking about here is to go back at least partially to the drawing board.

Of course, that's pretty much all my own opinion. I prefer smaller parties in my DnD because they're easier to manage (as a DM), and better for more in depth RPing (as a player).

Z.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 12:54 PM
Originally Posted by Zandilar

EA is way too late in the development cycle for this.
Z.


No, its' not.
We aren't talking about a massive redesign, we are talking about UI tweaking and eventually rebalancing encounters, which is something that will go on for a while regardless of any change to the party size.
If modders could find a (fairly half-assed) way to introduce six party members in DOS, Larian with full time paid devs and a gargantuan budget compared to their previous productions COULD absolutely achieve this type of change with relative ease, IF they want to commit to it.
Posted By: Alon Binyamin Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 01:39 PM
I love how Tuco is all over the forums. Just posting like he's been training for this his whole life.
Tuco, you have more posts on this than the original poster - you probably care more about this as well XD.
Go you!
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 01:55 PM
Originally Posted by Alon Binyamin
I love how Tuco is all over the forums. Just posting like he's been training for this his whole life.
Tuco, you have more posts on this than the original poster - you probably care more about this as well XD.
Go you!

I DO care about getting the best game we can.

Not sure why that should be a problem for you.
Posted By: Alon Binyamin Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 02:09 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Alon Binyamin
I love how Tuco is all over the forums. Just posting like he's been training for this his whole life.
Tuco, you have more posts on this than the original poster - you probably care more about this as well XD.
Go you!

I DO care about getting the best game we can.

Not sure why that should be a problem for you.


No problem at all. I thought a was friendly enough.. but writing always come across as more aggressive than intended.
The smile was genuine and the "Go you!" was genuine as well.
I was not being cynical.

Posted By: Stabbey Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 02:16 PM
I did the "local LAN game" trick to create four custom characters, and I was almost immediately struck with decision paralysis. My main character is a Rogue (AT), and I'm taking a Cleric as well, and then I had two slots to decide on some combination of Dwarf Fighter, Human Warlock, and Tiefling Wizard.

Can a Cleric alone be my front-line fighter? If I take the Warlock, how will he be able to see in the dark without the Light cantrip? I eventually went for Rogue/Cleric/Warlock/Wizard, but now I am worried if this is actually viable, because If I'm wrong, there's no way I can fix it later. Especially if I tried it in the full game where the rest of your companions go away.

Some people say that you don't need a dedicated Cleric or Rogue in the party, and you can multi-class and use backgrounds to cover roles... but how are people unfamiliar with D&D 5e supposed to understand the right way to build characters to do that? The choices made at character creation cannot be easily undone.

I really feel like I need at least 5 people in the party to feel comfortable. Four is too small.

****

In terms of the UI, the game already perfectly handles 6 portraits at the lower left. Lal'ezl and Us were added to my 4-person party without issue.

For the character panels, that's also not impossible to workaround. Display 4 panels as normal, and arrows at the edges so you can shift to show the other two. Like so:

[A B C D] E F
[B C D E] F A
[C D E F] A B
[D E F A] B C
[E F A B] C D

You'll still be able to compare any two party members together.
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 02:31 PM
Originally Posted by Stabbey
I did the "local LAN game" trick to create four custom characters, and I was almost immediately struck with decision paralysis. My main character is a Rogue (AT), and I'm taking a Cleric as well, and then I had two slots to decide on some combination of Dwarf Fighter, Human Warlock, and Tiefling Wizard.

Can a Cleric alone be my front-line fighter? If I take the Warlock, how will he be able to see in the dark without the Light cantrip? I eventually went for Rogue/Cleric/Warlock/Wizard, but now I am worried if this is actually viable, because If I'm wrong, there's no way I can fix it later. Especially if I tried it in the full game where the rest of your companions go away.

Some people say that you don't need a dedicated Cleric or Rogue in the party, and you can multi-class and use backgrounds to cover roles... but how are people unfamiliar with D&D 5e supposed to understand the right way to build characters to do that? The choices made at character creation cannot be easily undone.

I really feel like I need at least 5 people in the party to feel comfortable. Four is too small.

****

In terms of the UI, the game already perfectly handles 6 portraits at the lower left. Lal'ezl and Us were added to my 4-person party without issue.

For the character panels, that's also not impossible to workaround. Display 4 panels as normal, and arrows at the edges so you can shift to show the other two. Like so:

[A B C D] E F
[B C D E] F A
[C D E F] A B
[D E F A] B C
[E F A B] C D

You'll still be able to compare any two party members together.


Thank you for that addition to the thread, it's exactly my point and done so beautifully.

By they way it need to be adressed there will be 12 classes (13 if they include the Artificer) in the game. How am I going to feel only being able to choose 3 more classes out of those 12 and have a good agency of my part if I'm really restricted? Multiclassing? Sometimes you don't wanna multiclass specially if BG3 will go until level 20.

I should also say that, this limite on party member will be so hurtful to the RPG aspect of the game people are actually going to min max choose which ones they bring and which characters they create (yeah hey you Shadowheart I like you but your stats are a mess for a Trickery Cleric). When more companions come around we might see some companions just never being a part of any playthrough only because you're so damn much restricted and forced to choose into specific roles instead of having one or two jack of all trades spot (hello bards).
Posted By: Afaslizo Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 03:13 PM
Originally Posted by Gray Ghost
I think that a better tutorial is sorely needed for this game, that's true but even ignoring the fact that there's still going to be a learning curve before players are going to be implementing all the tools at their disposal to the fullest, a game shouldn't be balanced around the minimum a player needs to make it through. Even as someone who has been playing cRPGs for close to a decade, I doubt I'd be playing this game at the level where I don't need a tank and healer until at least my third playthrough and I shouldn't have to wait that long to be able to experience a wider variety of charcater stories and interactions.

So you want to talk about balance? Like when I did not need the rest of the party for the hardest encounters in the game (Goblin camp, Minotaurs, dark grove) because they made the fights harder compared to doing them solo? Where is the balance at all at that? If I would need to take whole six slot party like in pillars or classic bg/pt/iwd I think I would need a tank as well because the balance is not around the party size but who you bring to the fight. I guess if playing without a rogue six party members would be better. Instead of nerfing the rogue now buffing the rest would be better and then you would not feel the need to bring more people because the people you have will be enough.

There is no balance. There are classes who are far better than others. But I suspect the better ones will be nerfed first till the system breaks and then rebuild from the ground up instead of buffing the weaker ones and making them viable too.
Posted By: madmalik Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 03:16 PM
+1
Posted By: Zaemon Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 03:24 PM
This is important. And the reason why they let every class to read scrolls probably. So we don't "have" to get a mage/cleric/etc. Same with disabling traps. I want to have a fighter, ranger, rogue, wizard, cleric and warlock, but I can't. I have to renounce the warlock and rogue. It takes me out of immersion when my ranger is the trap disabler and behaves like a rogue. If I had Astarion, I would have to take the fighter out, and now who takes the hits? the cleric? she's supposed to hold Bless, but now she gets hit always and concentration is out, so she becomes a worse fighter. It's just frustrating.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 03:26 PM
Well to talk about balance, firstly this is early access and this is probably the least balanced the game will ever be because fine tuning that balance is part of the point. Second, yes you still need a tank in pillars of eternity but the point is because you have a large party you can take a tank, a healter AND STILL have room to bring along three other characters that can help but are primarily there because you like them or think they're interesting from a mechanical perspective.

Let me give you another example. The game Greedfall. It's an action RPG, you get 6-7 possible companions and you can only take 2 at a time. Much as I'd like to be able to take more companions at a time because I think they're cool and I like spending time with them, I never felt like I NEEDED to take a specific character to get through the game. It was constructed in such a way that you could flexibly take any character and while there were certainly some situations where a fight was particularly hard and I felt the need to have a specific party makeup, those moments were few and far between, and I could generally take any combination and be able to get through 90% of the game. Because of the way D&D classes work, you can't do that until you have a really good grasp of strategy and tactics and all sorts of stuff like that. And the only way to get that grasp is to play and practice.
Posted By: Athann Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 03:36 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Zandilar

EA is way too late in the development cycle for this.
Z.


No, its' not.
We aren't talking about a massive redesign, we are talking about UI tweaking and eventually rebalancing encounters, which is something that will go on for a while regardless of any change to the party size.
If modders could find a (fairly half-assed) way to introduce six party members in DOS, Larian with full time paid devs and a gargantual budget compared to their previous productions COULD absolutely achieve this type of change with relative ease, IF they want to commit to it.


you are totally right, some modders did enlarge the size of party in DOS2, if i remember correctly, the only things that prevented Larian from making a 6 man party was the time and funds, now they got the funds (They cannot say the EA wasn't a success), i hope there is still time for it, so we need our voices to be heard by Larian.
Posted By: zsuszi Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 03:46 PM
If we got more companion later 4 is extremly few and lacking, especially if u make your own hero (and why the hell not) . Plus yes I not really bothered the updated DOS engine + combat, and to be honest I think its really fitting for BG3 and close to the tabletop type gameplay BUT with bigger party size would be mor BG for me too.
Posted By: pill0ws Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 04:20 PM
I would absolutely LOVE at least 5 player size team. 6 would be acceptable but 4 doesnt feel right for the volume of baddies that take turns. Each turn consists of one relevant action (unlike DoS where you do all kinds of stuff) and they even went so far as to overtune the action economy by giving everyone overpowered bonus actions to makeup for the lack of bodies taking turns.... but thats a different discussion(or hell, maybe its relevant here, its absurd to think every class should need bonus action disengage/hide/shove). Overtuned bonus actions wouldnt be needed with a larger party size, they could re-balance around that if needed. If they go and add all the PHB classes and most the subclasses... then having those two extra party slots are going to feel so nice for group composition
Posted By: Bray Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 04:27 PM
+1

The more I play the more that I feel at least one extra party member would make a huge difference in the diversity of my team, especially when all the extra class come out.
Posted By: Sollace Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 05:16 PM
+1

I too believe that the party size is limiting in the combination of potential characters. I have yet to use either Wyll or Astarious as I am using a custom Rogue and need the talents of a cleric, a wizard and a fighter.

It is surprising that you can add Scratch to your camp but can't get him as an animal companion, obviously I haven't created a Ranger so I'm not sure if you go down the beast master route tou can add him into the party.

Hopefully as other classes are added the party size will be increased. This is the first Larian game I've played and visually it is great but the party size constraints are a real detriment...
Posted By: Sollace Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 05:29 PM
I'm guessing that it's why Larian are giving such heavy emphasis on the fact that this is early access. Hopefully the interaction between customers and Larian will live up to the hype and they'll take on this comment and work an acceptable solution into the game, this will hopefully help to redress the imbalance in encounters in the early stages of the game... Let's not forget that the AI seems to be expert in maxing the abilities of any foes in combat whereas some of us players are trying to get to grips with the combat mechanics of the game especially when the foes are generally outnumbering the player party and in some cases have more HP too.
Posted By: WarChiefZeke Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:03 PM
+1
Posted By: Matey Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:13 PM
Playing two player right now.
Me: A fighter
Player 2: A Ranger

we pick up Cleric and Mage companions and then run into the Rogue aaaaannnddd.... we would have to kick out the mage or cleric to get the rogue. I felt a lot more dejected about this than maybe I should have, but not having a rogue, cleric and mage in the party seems like a fail party and yet we can't have all three unless we made our char as one of them. It just feels way too limited.

So yeah, give us at least the option for 6 in a party. If as OP says, you balance the game around 4, thats fine, assuming you put in more than 1 difficulty setting, people with 6 can just crank it up to make up for it.

Also pointing out that there is pretty much no reason not to just add 6 in as a feature (if not the default) because obviously modders are going to make it a priority to get 6 in if Larian doesn't; so if you know it is what a significant number of people want, then just let us have it.
Posted By: PumatsHole Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:22 PM
-1

Adding a dissenting voice here. You do not "need" a mage / cleric / any one role in a game based on the 5e system. The difference between a party of 4 and party of 5 is massive and will trivialize most encounters in a way that cannot be fixed by simply adding more HP. A party of 6 in this game would be preposterous.

You can heal by eating food (let alone by resting essentially at any time for free), and the game is much more combat focused than a traditional session of D&D where skills and utility spells are not nearly as significant. There is much less need here for a balanced party that covers all possible bases than there is in D&D 5e, which is already very forgiving in terms of party composition needs.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:25 PM
Originally Posted by PumatsHole
-1

Adding a dissenting voice here. You do not "need" a mage / cleric / any one role in a game based on the 5e system. The difference between a party of 4 and party of 5 is massive and will trivialize most encounters in a way that cannot be fixed by simply adding more HP. A party of 6 in this game would be preposterous.

You can heal by eating food (let alone by resting essentially at any time for free), and the game is much more combat focused than a traditional session of D&D where skills and utility spells are not nearly as significant. There is much less need here for a balanced party that covers all possible bases than there is in D&D 5e, which is already very forgiving in terms of party composition needs.


Literally none of the objections you are posting is actually related to the mechanic of having six party members.
With the only possible exception of "needing to rebalance encounters" which as already said at least a dozen times is a bogus complaint since most of them are not finalized anyway and it will take a lot of rebalancing in any case.
.
Posted By: Victordeus Re: Party Size Discussion - 10/10/20 10:37 PM
I would just like to add another voice in the pro for the option of more companions. I think now would be the time to implement that so things can be rebalanced around it. It would then be even more of a challenge for the die hards that really like playing the game as a solo act, and people could still do 4 if they wanted, but having at least 5 would give more options in combat without having to try to make due without a rogue/mage/cleric. Or we could just have everyone be bards so all things are possible! wink
Posted By: Black_Elk Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 12:13 AM
I was surprised too at only 4

This was the main reason none of the various "spiritual successors" to BG ever really lived up. In NWN you just had henchmen and that blew. In Dragon Age you only had 4, but it didn't matter cause it wasn't really D&D anyway and they only had a few core classes there. Skyrim back to henchmen concept. Pillars, sure, but again not D&D. Everyone always drops the ball on this one.

6 is the magic number for this game
Full party combat
D&D setting Faerun

I'd hazard that's what everyone from my gen has wanted since Neverwinter, but somehow one of those planks hasn't made the final cut in any iteration since Icewind Dale. Its baffling


ps. when its built around 6 you have a simple way to scale up the difficulty quickly for players that want a more hardcore playthrough, since they could play with just a party of 3 or 4 and still get all the enjoyment of trying to strategize their way through combats with a smaller crew that way. I don't see how it lengthens combat with more companions or anything of that sort. Its just a matter of how they choose to scale the combat difficulty. If you build it for a party of 4, then going to 5 or 6 is a pain in the ass after the fact. If you build it for 6, then going down to 4 or 5 feels like monster mode and is fun. Nobody is ever going to grumble that its not a party of 7 hehe. It also makes replay more appealing too, if you want to try and solo and the like with a higher lvl character. Or try things out with a B team roster. All things that make me think of the BG model


pps. the 6 person party in BG was a call back to earlier games from the late 80s into the 90s like Might and Magic III and Xeen or Eye of the Beholder and Pools of Radiance, and that's one of the reasons it was so rad when BG dropped originally. There's just a feel to the full party of 6 that makes it all more Epic.

Like a legit legendary book of artifacts level campaign. You hit the big time when you need 6 to pull it off lol. That's all I'm saying. Don't settle for 5, go the for the Dragon's Orb!!!
6

Posted By: noodles666 Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 12:37 AM
+1

The party of 6 just feels right when adventuring. additionally i have a suggestion that comes from experience on Stellaris of all things: Give us the option to create characters that can be forced into the world (in a selection of early random spots maybe). Maybe you could create a collection of different characters that you like and have a randomised spawn for an extra bit of spice in re-playability. Perhaps a limit of two extra player created characters would be enough to still allow plenty of origin stories to be enjoyed along the way. It would mean very little in extra commitment from the devs on dialogue and origin backstories, while also allowing us to put together the group we imagine might be interesting to use. I'm a warlock lover, so i need as many character slots as possible to get my lock in play without feeling like i am missing out on the basics of good group structure.
Posted By: Sezu Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 08:46 AM
+1


Posted By: tieboyx Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 08:55 AM
The tabletop recommends a party size of 4, and in the turn based system, trash encounters would become a slog if they were balanced for 6 players, since they would have to add more mobs in each encounter to compensate.
Posted By: Gray Ghost Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 09:15 AM
As of now I'm finding most trash mobs a slog with a 4 character party because even at level 4 only my fighter is capable of consistently taking out a 10hp goblin with less than 2 hits. I'd say I'm dealing with a character getting downed in about 60% of combats and that makes things feel even worse because now I have to scramble to help them, hope they can heal before gettign downed again and then going back to attacking. Without changing anything else about the difficulty, a fifth party member would bring the experience down to being manageable, with trash mobs actually being trash mobs because as it stands my experience of a "trash mob" in this game has a decent chance of being a TPK if I'm not really stretching my strategic muscles. And a boss combat in this game? At this point I'm taking it as a given that I'll definitely die at least once.
Posted By: YelloB Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 10:22 AM
+1

I understand there are arguments for a 4 man party max, having to do with encounter length and people apparently having trouble keeping up with managing 6 characters and their abilities. At least some such arguments were being made when Pillars of Eternity wanted to cut down the party from 1 to 2. Also there is and argument for wanting to limit the tools a party has at their disposal to encourage creative solutions to problems and Larian seem to like that kind of thing. But the truth is this will lead to pretty much every party being the same utility based one with 1 healer 1 rogue and the other 2 switching depending on the PC class.

6 characters wont take away the utility party problem entirely. Even with Baldur's Gate 1&2 There is always high pressure to have at least the healer and rogue. But atleast 6 party members leaves some slack there to play with.

Now BG3 is obviously turn based which makes the encounter length problem more prominent than in the real time with pause titles. But I would rather leave this up to the player and perhaps inform the player that with a bigger party combats will likely take longer.

I disagree with the OP about just plonking in the option for 6 party members without any balance considerations. I'd actually prefer a tweakable difficulty with the option for the player to increase the amount of enemies in combat situations. Give the player some of the DM's balancing power so to speak. I recently played BG1 again and I was kinda sad that I could not simply increase enemy amounts and would have been forced to also give them more health. I wanted core rules but with a bit more enemies.

Ofcourse this also puts a bit more pressure for having more companions. BG1 had tons, and I'm still not sure I've ever met them all. BG1 companions were also super simple with just a few combat barks and no dialogue. So it is going to require way more resources from Larian to add a full fledged companion. Pros and cons.
Posted By: Zress Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 10:29 AM
The thing with 4 characters is that you are kinda forced to take specific members. In my playthrough I feel forced to take Shadowheart, Astarion and Lae'zel because they add something I need like a frontliner and healer and a rogue that can lockpick and find traps. But I would really rather hang around with Wyll and Gale which are much more nice and friendly and interesting to me. But in a way I feel I can't because then combat and exploration will be really really hard.
Posted By: ImSuperCereal Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 11:22 AM
+1
I agree, 5/6 party size would be better because more characters to interact with, more diverse party composition and more freedom, flexibility and creativity when creating a balanced party.
Posted By: MasterRoo09 Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 11:41 AM
Originally Posted by tieboyx
The tabletop recommends a party size of 4, and in the turn based system, trash encounters would become a slog if they were balanced for 6 players, since they would have to add more mobs in each encounter to compensate.


"The preceding guidelines assume that you have a party consisting of three to five adventureres... If the party contains six or more characters, use the next lowest multiplier on the table." - Page 83 D&D Dungeons Master's Guide

5e considers 4-5 to be standard while 6 or more being optional, totally up to the players and DM for party size. So Larian at the very least can give us max 5 party members if they're being picky with the rules. The reason why many players want the option (keyword option), is because it was an option in the original BG 1 and 2. This is a Baldur's Gate game, doesn't matter who's developing it. I also would like to mention that many official WofC D&D adventure modules of both current and past editions are geared for 4-5 and 4-6 players.

I don't know how much more literal I can get with actual sources. I don't understand the issue of not favoring max 6 party members as an option.

I understand it's going to take "resources" to balance and tweak the game but Larian has both the time and resources.

How and why is this a problem?
Posted By: VincentNZ Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 11:47 AM
I run as a rogue, although I would have preferred to play a ranger, but I knew of the 4 party limit, so I figured that a rogue will come in handier. I was not aware that you can have sort of hybrids that can act in other ways. This is cool. But we can face the obvious truth, only a small minority knows enough to exploit all or even most of the possibilities. Larian in BG3 is also particularly bad at communicating to the player what is possible, while also giving you the standard composition right from the start. So the vast majority will just choose the way of the least resistance and effectively be locked out of a large portion of the game.
This does include party banter and interaction, but also a lot of synergy and gameplay interactions. So your mage/ranger can unlock most doors? A bard can fill multiple roles, as spellcaster, supporter or damage dealer? You can have multiple actions in one turn or totally substitute certain primary roles with clever skilling and leveling or the heavy use of consumables and resources that are yet unclear and complicated to handle/refill? Cool, I had no idea and that is why I solely use my fighter, rogue, mage, cleric combo, because I do not know enough as I am not told and shown enough.

So, as a casual dude, I am pretty limited in my playstyle. Giving me another character to dabble with would allow me to discover more synergies by myself or play doubled roles differently.
Posted By: Vneef86 Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 10:53 PM
I agree please up the the Party size to like 5 or 6, My big issue is that having a healer, you are ether forced to take Shadowheart or become the one with the healing magic. and as such with only 4 slots to work with you have NO wiggle room to customize your party. As it is ( I have not finished the First act yet) but I am not a fan of the Character Shadowheart at least not if I am wanting to play the good hero, as she gets mad at me every time I am trying to help people.
With a party of 5 you can actually do something with it, having the ones you like plus the healer Shadowheart, Or having more companions to choose from. As it is two of them are kinda just angry and supper aggressive to the player character and what seems to be no real reason. I really like the game so far in how it plays ect. I would Just like to have more companions to choose from and PLEASE up the party size, 4 is just not enjoyable to me and makes playing what I would like to play really hard.
Posted By: KingWilhelm Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 11:05 PM
+1
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 11/10/20 11:05 PM
There are some encounters with 10 or so enemies, including archers spamming bombs.

It doesn't seem like the combat is designed around 4 players. 4 vs 10. They aren't even one shot unless u wanna use big spells every turn like guiding bolt. And no I don't want every fight for me to be some cheese or me min maxing to get the most advantage and maybe resting every fight. The overall balance is kinda fucky atm.
Posted By: Plazim Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 12:28 AM
I mentioned it in another post but - why not just make "easy" mode allow 5-6 party size. So normal game mode would be 4 party members, and easy game mode would be normal with the additional 1-2 party members. That way Larian doesnt need to go back and rebalance the whole game for 5-6 players.
Posted By: ultraulf Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 12:42 AM
I personally really enjoy the party size, played through all of the early access and the difficulty seems just right.
Posted By: Pupito Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 12:50 AM
I think 5 members in the party would be better, one more person could make all the difference in a fight and it would also be nice to have an extra companion to interact with. I really just hope that more companions are available at some point down the road, I'm guessing making one companion for each class isn't really something they're going to do it would be fantastic if they did, because as things stand party composition is really limited. If the available companions are the exact same at full release, then we won't really be able to have a party based around which characters we like or which characters our character would have with them in terms of RP.

Let's say I make a stereotypical paladin who wants to smite everything he would consider evil. Welp, there goes Astarion, Shadowheart, and probably Wyll, since one is literally a vampire, one is an Evil Cleric, and the other made a pact with a demon. Now I don't even have a full party, and the only ones I have left are the Warrior Lae'zel (who I'd probably leave to do her own thing since she's just constantly a jerk anyway), and the Wizard Gale.

Now, I did find a side quest where I helped out a tiefling and it gave me the option to ask her to join my party, and she said maybe one day but she has business to take care of now. So maybe she'll be a possible companion at some point down the road, but there's still plenty of ways to put companions into the game as well. For instance, a druid companion could obviously be found in the druid's grove. Not every single companion has to have the same exact goal or some super mysterious backstory to make them a good companion.

A druid who decides to join my party to help out because they don't agree with Kagha's ways, and so they can kill us if we turn into a mindflayer? There's the motivation for coming with us. Doesn't need some super mysterious and amazing backstory like a wizard who might destroy the world or whatever if he dies, just a simple druid who wants to get away from her crazy leader and try to help keep people from turning into monsters, or kill them as a last resort. I'd take them with me, cause who wants to be a mindflayer?

Not every companion needs to be a playable character either, in fact having companions you can't play as might increase replay value. If I play through the full release game once with Wyll as my character, and then have Gale, Lae'zel, and Shadowheart for companions, then by the end I will have experienced every single character side story apart from Astarion. Even if I make a custom character, that would still leave only 2 companion side story's unexplored, and I'm not sure that finding out what happens to those 2 is convincing enough to sink another 60+ hours or however long into playing through again.

But if there are other companions that don't have some grand backstory that I prefer as companions over the other PC companions, then I'd take some of them along instead on that first playthrough. So say I play as Wyll, and fill my party with Shadowheart and 2 other NPC companions, that still leaves me with Gale, Lae'zel, and Astarion's side quests to discover, which might be enough of a change in content to warrant me another playthrough to see all 3 of their side quests. If I just play as Wyll and take 3 NPC companions along, I'm guaranteed another playthrough because I want to see at least 1 or 2 of the other companions side quests. All in all, it's easy enough to come up with ideas for NPC companions to join us, they don't all have to have an evil worm in their head or some insane backstory and side quest, they just need a motivation to join up with us and a personality so they can have some small chats with us and determine if they like or dislike our actions. Also, more romance choices :P
Posted By: GraveSpine109 Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 01:34 AM
+1
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 07:24 AM
Originally Posted by Plazim
That way Larian doesnt need to go back and rebalance the whole game for 5-6 players.

There no balance right now, even difficulty options not implemented yet.
So i don't understand such arguments, this work(balancing) they will still have to do in the future and it is better to do it with an eye on 5-6 ppl party(as the desire of the majority).
The sooner they change it, the better.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 08:10 AM
There are something like 40 +1 on this thread.
I just create a poll on reddit and other forums to see what players think about it.
Posted By: lewe0fun Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 08:21 AM
4 enough, more people are a herd
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 08:39 AM
Originally Posted by lewe0fun
4 enough, more people are a herd


Let's say that to Drizzt.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 08:59 AM
Originally Posted by Pupito
I think 5 members in the party would be better

yep and that kind of middle ground of 4 vs 6 debate
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 12:44 PM
Since I just mentioned it in my thread about party controls, I should probably give a quick reminder to anyone in favor of a six-members party:

don't overlook giving feedback on the issue of how the party is managed/moved around, because solving it is basically a pre-requirement to actually get the party expansion you want.
The chain/unchain system and its clumsy auto-follow work already poorly enough now. With six men in your party it would turn into an unmitigated disaster.
Posted By: Quent Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 01:21 PM
Anyone who's saying that a four man party means that your restricted to player the cookie cutter party are simply not aware of the flexibility 5e offers, or are just not creative. In most my playthroughs I haven't used a cleric, and even when I do I don't use them for anything more than emergency healing, preferring to use them instead for actual combat (with in tabletop 5e they can really excel at). Why do you need a tank? I mean unless you're building something around the sentinel feat (which doesn't seem to be implemented yet), there's not even a viable way for them to maintain threat? Even when playing tabletop, the idea you have to have certain classes is self-limiting. Why have a rogue when you can have a ranger with the criminal background? Or a cleric when you can have a wizard with the magic initiate feat? One of the amazing things about 5e is that it doesn't restrict things to people playing that specific class, and so far that has transferred reasonably well into bg3 and I imagine it will continue to do so as more classes/races are added. I mean the 5e bard in itself can simultaneously fill the typical cleric, wizard and rogue roles of a classic party. That means one slot for your obligatory fighter, and 2 cool looking meat shields.

This doesn't even factor in if they end up adding multiclassing to the game, which adds so many more options.

While I wouldn't object to them doing a 6-man party, I think four is easier to manage, is more engaging in multiplayer (as from experience playing tabletop I think anymore than 5 players just detracts from the experience), and actually encourages people to have more creative character ideas and finding different ways of approaching the same solution. Also for single player, 3 AI companions having interactions is interesting but managing, with (hopefully) plenty of replayability options. 5 AI companions, I feel like that just gets messy.

I'm actually pretty hyped by the idea of having a 4-man drow ranger squad, and as this game stands I feel like there is very little that would stand in the way of such a team.

Posted By: Athann Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 01:24 PM
I made a poll on reddit, choose your side:

https://www.reddit.com/r/BaldursGate3/comments/j9qk4f/party_size/
Posted By: Eddiar Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 02:09 PM
I would also like to support this but I am worried bigger party sizes means easier fights.
So unless just about everyone will do more damage than me to balance things that means there needs to be more mobs in each encounter.

I think we should compromise on a 5th member maximum. That should be enough.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 02:12 PM
Originally Posted by Athann


That's a bad poll, because it puts the question in a very unclear and questionable form.
We don't want "the option" to add two party members as some sort of fancy extra.
We want the game to support a party of six as a default interface and then let people who are happy with less party members do as they will.
Posted By: Riandor Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 02:19 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Athann


That's a bad poll, because it puts the question in a very unclear and questionable form.
We don't want "the option" to add two party members as some sort of fancy extra.
We want the game to support a party of six as a default interface and then let people who are happy with less party members do as they will.


Precisely this.
Your options should simply have been something along the lines of:

6 - As standard (but players can choose to play with fewer)
5 - Cap it here, its a fair compromise
4 - It's fine as is and Modding can do the rest
Posted By: Roarro Re: Party Size Discussion - 12/10/20 10:00 PM
5 or 6 party,4 person i can have already in DOS and even there its limiting. Yes characters are flexible, but more companions are just fun for me.
ideally i have 6 + 2 extra npc like in Wizardry 8-that was a great game with epic characters ;D.
Posted By: MasterRoo09 Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:10 AM
For everyone who thinks having the option of 2 more party members is bogus or "makes the game or combat too long" or makes "it too easy" or "you can multiclass to fix most problems", hear me out a bit.
Here's my link to my thoughts on why I think it would be a lot of fun for the option of 6 party members.
http://forums.larian.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=685704#Post685704

I would like to add a few things to back that up.

1. 5e Core Rules

"The preceding guidelines assume that you have a party consisting of three to five adventureres... If the party contains six or more characters, use the next lowest multiplier on the table." - Page 83 D&D Dungeons Master's Guide

5e considers 4-5 to be standard while 6 or more being optional, totally up to the players and DM for party size. So Larian at the very least can give us max 5 party members if they're being picky with the rules. The reason why many players want the option (keyword option), is because it was an option in the original BG 1 and 2. This is a Baldur's Gate game, doesn't matter who's developing it. I wouldn't mind more elements from the original BG that would further improve BG3. (Party management and maneuvering being a few to list) I also would like to mention that many official WofC D&D adventure modules of both current and past editions are geared for 4-5 and/or 4-6 players. If you want "lore" to further prove my point, take a look at Drizzt companions. He has 5 total in his party. So what if players wanted to have fun and roleplay as Drizzt in BG3 and (hopefully have an option later to add fully other customize companions) his companions from the books?

2. Time management.

The fact that I have to sit and watch my clock during enemy turns against my party of 4 is bogus. For example: Goblin camp. That was about 25 enemies which would be considered a platoon (18-50 soldiers) against my 4 companions which is not even considered a squad (6*-10 soldiers), So already players are watching their clocks for the enemy to take their sweet time in current Early Access. If I had those extra 2 members, I would've had more chances taking out Goblins quickly.

3. Difficulty Levels

If players want a challenge, you have every right to do that and the option of 6 companions will not sour that experience. I honestly think the game should reward players who decide to take these challenges for a smaller party, just like in the original BG. The same amount of experience will be earned for encounters but if your party is smaller, each companion gets a bigger piece of the pie. So far it seems that the game rewards the same amount of exp. no matter how big or small the party size.

4. The game world is not designed for a bigger party

I'd beg to differ. Most battles have a large number of opponents and there is plenty of space for 2 more party members. If a warlock can have their minion and a ranger can have their pet in the same party of 4, It can fit more than four or even 6 playable characters in practically every area.
For many of the old-school BG players. Remember Firewine Ruins and how claustrophobic it was? You almost had to move the party in a single file line in that dungeon. BG3 EA hasn't had any dungeons or areas as claustrophobic as Firewine Ruins and if they did, I'm sure it would be a challenging dungeon. Also, I hope to God Larian fixes the party movement and controls.

I don't see how an optional party of 6 would sour your experience if you really hate that idea. In fact it gives you more options and variety on how you want to approach the game. I thought that was the whole reason why we love RPG's the variety of possibilities and customizations.

Larian, if you're reading this, at least let us know why this wouldn't be possible. Many people who don't like the idea say because it's also "balancing issue" and needs a lot of resources. I'm positive that is an issue but if that is true then let's hear it from the horse's mouth and let us know why.

Posted By: HustleCat Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 06:54 AM
I'm okay with the current 4 member party, but I wouldn't be against options where you can go out as a party of 2 or 6. They could adjust the number of actions we have or just enemies' health to fit your party size. Balance would definitely be the big issue. If I am going out with a party of 6 though, I would like the AI to do my companions turns just to speed the game up. Maybe incorporate a tactics system similar to Dragon Age.
Posted By: VhexLambda Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:43 AM
+1
Posted By: Lady Avyna Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:03 AM
+1
I have noticed how easily you can be defeated if you are fighting against a horde of enemies. Your party will get obliterated quickly and your like "What the hell just happened?" If you have a party of at least 6 members then it raises your chances of survival especially against tougher enemies or larger groups.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:08 AM
Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
+1
I have noticed how easily you can be defeated if you are fighting against a horde of enemies. Your party will get obliterated quickly and your like "What the hell just happened?" If you have a party of at least 6 members then it raises your chances of survival especially against tougher enemies or larger groups.

If nothing else, because
1- It gives more targets to the enemies to chose from, possibly even parting their damage more.
2- It gives you more chances to intervene in the queue of enemy actions instead of staying a passive witness.

Which is why "concerns" that a six-men party would "slow down the game" are mostly an uneducated nonsense.
Posted By: RKane Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:39 AM
Originally Posted by MasterRoo09

Larian, if you're reading this, at least let us know why this wouldn't be possible. Many people who don't like the idea say because it's also "balancing issue" and needs a lot of resources. I'm positive that is an issue but if that is true then let's hear it from the horse's mouth and let us know why.


Anyone who complains about 'balancing issues' when an idea is presented is a selfish moron. It's like the argument "It would take too much time to impliment" from people with no coding experience and surmounts to "I'm happy with it so why should I accomodate your idea". How something is balance is a task for the devs to consider not the playerbase and is a completely irrelivant criticism to make. Anything can be balanced if done right and is done after the fact, not in spite of it.

You have made a lot of really solid points and I agree with all of them. Especially the idea about giving 'party experience' instead of 'individual experience'

Something I'd like to add is that a large issue, due to Larians current creative decisions, is that every single fight is mapped out and planned. Nothing is really 'randomised' and thus you end up with a pretty static game after multiple playthroughs due to the lack of 'living world' elements. I've made these points in the 2 suggestions in my sig. Random encounters,respawning / repopulating enemies, coding dynamic encounters that increase/decrease the enemy numbers in response to party size. (For those that want to whine about cannon, it'd be easy enough to add 'priority units', like commanders, that carry a warhorne they can blow to summon reinforcements) are all elements I feel like Larian need to include

Posted By: Ghorunt Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:39 AM
Originally Posted by Alodar
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.
Not only would you be adding 2 more bodies on the players side you would need to add additional monsters to make combats challenging.
Six players could mean as many as 6 more turns for combats and that's just too much.

You really need to explore the backgrounds in 5E. A dedicated thief is no longer necessary. With the Urchin background you gain proficiency in both stealth and Sleight of hand which allows any Dex character to sneak and pick locks/remove traps.

There are lots of options, and the smaller the party the more re-playable the game and the more strategy you have to employ.

There has been no combat in Early Access that I've thought that I needed two more characters to be more effective


Six players would slow down combat, decrease re-playablity, and lessen the strategy required to succeed.
That's a hard no from me.

(If it's something you folks truly want you can Mod it in after full release.)


I could not have said it better. I agree 4-man party should be where it is at.
Posted By: RKane Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:43 AM
Originally Posted by Ghorunt
Originally Posted by Alodar
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.



I could not have said it better. I agree 4-man party should be where it is at.


So don't play in a 6 man party. What he's advocating for is the ability to do so. I think you're both shooting down the idea in spite of the fact that the game will be balanced around 4 people anyway so your experience wont change
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:50 AM
Originally Posted by Ghorunt
Originally Posted by Alodar
I disagree completely.


Six players would slow down combat.
Not only would you be adding 2 more bodies on the players side you would need to add additional monsters to make combats challenging.
Six players could mean as many as 6 more turns for combats and that's just too much.

You really need to explore the backgrounds in 5E. A dedicated thief is no longer necessary. With the Urchin background you gain proficiency in both stealth and Sleight of hand which allows any Dex character to sneak and pick locks/remove traps.

There are lots of options, and the smaller the party the more re-playable the game and the more strategy you have to employ.javascript: void(0)

There has been no combat in Early Access that I've thought that I needed two more characters to be more effective


Six players would slow down combat, decrease re-playablity, and lessen the strategy required to succeed.
That's a hard no from me.

(If it's something you folks truly want you can Mod it in after full release.)


I could not have said it better. I agree 4-man party should be where it is at.


Read the topic please.
=> combats would be faster if you don't add ennemies. You don't have to add ennemies. That's not primarily how you balance a game difficulty.
=> it would increase replayability because you'll have way more possible combination. That's mathematics.

That's facts so please, try not to base your thoughts on invalid arguments...
Posted By: Ghorunt Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:55 AM
Originally Posted by RKane

So don't play in a 6 man party. What he's advocating for is the ability to do so. I think you're both shooting down the idea in spite of the fact that the game will be balanced around 4 people anyway so your experience wont change


If you balance the game around 4 characters but allow a party of 6, everyone will have 6 characters in their party anyway, and this would make the game too easy. If you want to go that route, it makes more sense allowing this option with a mod instead.

If the combats would scale their difficulty automatically based on party size, I think the option of 6 is fine. That being said, it's a tall order for Larian, which makes me doubt they will take this route:
  • Balancing this system would be very work intensive
  • Companions are very well fleshed out. Having to add more is once again very work intensive. And allowing hirelings just to fill out a party of 6 seems... odd.


EDIT
If people feel combat is too hard, that is a different problem in my opinion. That does not necessarily need to be solved by adding more party members. It could instead be solved by making the encounters easier.
Posted By: Aurgelmir Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:57 AM
And here my first multi player play through was with just 3 members.
My current playthrough don't have the rogue, Gale has 14 dex, he can pick those locks.


While I get the idea, and wanting to cover all the bases, I think that's the exact reason why you shouldn't have it. DnD 5e is interestingly balanced. You can play almost any combination of classes, and still win.
Larian has done a great job of adding "many ways to Rome" for most situations.
Many classes can fill two roles too. Clerics are great tanks, Warlocks and Wizards can do lots of sneaky things (especially a Wizard with invisibility and high Dex)

What I think is more needed is the ability to respec the origin characters, because their stat distribution is... not god.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 10:34 AM
Originally Posted by Ghorunt




I could not have said it better. I agree 4-man party should be where it is at...

...in trash basket
Posted By: Riandor Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 10:46 AM
Let's be honest though, either way the controlling of the party has to be improved and ten fold if we are to integrate more paty members.

I need to dig Tuco's other thread out, because having now played the EA, managing the party is a nightmare. I will save the sailient points for the other thread, but if we are going to have more obstacles/surface gunk, then party management is king. SO Yes to more characters in a party, but ONLY in combination with improvements to the handling of said group. Otherwise I will reduce my party to solo or MP with friends so that my stupid party members don't run back and forth to a new leader just because I didn't unchain them all and decided to move jump them individually around obstacles.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 11:34 AM
Originally Posted by Riandor
Let's be honest though, either way the controlling of the party has to be improved and ten fold if we are to integrate more paty members.

I need to dig Tuco's other thread out, because having now played the EA, managing the party is a nightmare. I will save the sailient points for the other thread, but if we are going to have more obstacles/surface gunk, then party management is king. SO Yes to more characters in a party, but ONLY in combination with improvements to the handling of said group. Otherwise I will reduce my party to solo or MP with friends so that my stupid party members don't run back and forth to a new leader just because I didn't unchain them all and decided to move jump them individually around obstacles.

Yeah, as you can imagine I agree. There's a reason if I said in previous replies that better party control should be basically perceived as a pre-requirement to even BEGIN to discuss party size (and frankly as a necessity even if Larian stubbornly decides to stick with 4 men as absolute limit, despise the overwhelming amount of people who started asking for six since the first reveal).
Posted By: RKane Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 11:53 AM
Originally Posted by Ghorunt
Originally Posted by RKane

So don't play in a 6 man party. What he's advocating for is the ability to do so. I think you're both shooting down the idea in spite of the fact that the game will be balanced around 4 people anyway so your experience wont change


If you balance the game around 4 characters but allow a party of 6, everyone will have 6 characters in their party anyway

How do you know?

Originally Posted by Ghorunt

and this would make the game too easy. If you want to go that route, it makes more sense allowing this option with a mod instead.


Why do you care if it makes the game easier for a group of 6? You're not asking for this feature so you have no business talking about balance

Also, I should point out that in divinity, the number of people who did lone wolf duo's seemed to be just as many people looking for 4. In fact, I'd be interested in the ratio between the number of 2:3:4 man games played. I would put money on the fact that full 4 man runs would have the lowest percent as it seemed impossible to find a group of 4 people to actually commit to the entire game.

Also, as I've said in a previous quote, and countless times, balance is a completely pointless criticism to an otherwise reasonable and valid suggestion / request. It's not your job to worry about such a trivial task. Anything can be balanced after the fact.

Opposing a feature request because you 'worry about the balance' is childish and annoying. It's a deadweight opinion based on an entirely selfish desire to cockblock others for no reason whatsoever.


TL;DR, I've yet to see any valid reasons to oppose this idea. If your only concern is balance, just say "I'd wouldn't mind as long as the balance is done right". Don't go round saying "I oppose this because I worry they might ruin the balance for a situation I never intend to play". It's really selfish. Stop offering dead weight opinions and use your head. There is a very simple solution to this and would be trivial to keep everyone happy.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 12:04 PM
Originally Posted by RKane


Opposing a feature request because you 'worry about the balance' is childish and annoying. It's a deadweight opinion based on an entirely selfish desire to cockblock others for no reason whatsoever.


TL;DR, I've yet to see any valid reasons to oppose this idea. If your only concern is balance, just say "I'd wouldn't mind as long as the balance is done right". Don't go round saying "I oppose this because I worry they might ruin the balance for a situation I never intend to play". It's really selfish. Stop offering dead weight opinions and use your head. There is a very simple solution to this and would be trivial to keep everyone happy.

It's especially jarring as a bogus argument because, among other things, it seems to assume that currently the balance is in a state of Holy Perfection and nothing should be done to upset it, which is obviously silly at best.
Posted By: jonn Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 12:43 PM
Originally Posted by RKane
Originally Posted by Ghorunt
Originally Posted by RKane

So don't play in a 6 man party. What he's advocating for is the ability to do so. I think you're both shooting down the idea in spite of the fact that the game will be balanced around 4 people anyway so your experience wont change


If you balance the game around 4 characters but allow a party of 6, everyone will have 6 characters in their party anyway

How do you know?

Originally Posted by Ghorunt

and this would make the game too easy. If you want to go that route, it makes more sense allowing this option with a mod instead.


Why do you care if it makes the game easier for a group of 6? You're not asking for this feature so you have no business talking about balance

Also, I should point out that in divinity, the number of people who did lone wolf duo's seemed to be just as many people looking for 4. In fact, I'd be interested in the ratio between the number of 2:3:4 man games played. I would put money on the fact that full 4 man runs would have the lowest percent as it seemed impossible to find a group of 4 people to actually commit to the entire game.

Also, as I've said in a previous quote, and countless times, balance is a completely pointless criticism to an otherwise reasonable and valid suggestion / request. It's not your job to worry about such a trivial task. Anything can be balanced after the fact.

Opposing a feature request because you 'worry about the balance' is childish and annoying. It's a deadweight opinion based on an entirely selfish desire to cockblock others for no reason whatsoever.


TL;DR, I've yet to see any valid reasons to oppose this idea. If your only concern is balance, just say "I'd wouldn't mind as long as the balance is done right". Don't go round saying "I oppose this because I worry they might ruin the balance for a situation I never intend to play". It's really selfish. Stop offering dead weight opinions and use your head. There is a very simple solution to this and would be trivial to keep everyone happy.


I'm only opposed to it until the devs come out and say that it is something they will be able to manage along with all the other improvements they want to make. Until then it is a possibility, no matter how much you shout, scoff and name-call, that this could use up resources that could be better used elsewhere. For me and many others the extra party size isn't that big of a deal.
Posted By: HustleCat Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 02:11 PM
Balance is a valid concern. Calling a point of view moronic or selfish because it doesn't line up with your's is unhelpful and hypocritical.

So with 6 people, you'd have 50% more firepower.
So now to balance that you'd need 50% more or stronger enemies. Which would negate any time saving. At best, fights would last just as long

Now with 6 you also have 2 more people you have to gear up and manage their build and relationship. That can add a lot to play time in a game that already has a slow pace.

Playing DOS2, Lone Wolf games went noticebly quicker than 4 player ones.

DOS2 also had more freedom with its rules and could balance out lone wolf with double stats and more AP

Now with BG3 they're more restricted where the more they stray from dnd rules, the more upset people could be. That's where balancing can get complicated. So add more ideas to help with that, rather than leaving it up to the devs or throwing insults.

Maybe less EXP for bigger parties and more for smaller ones
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 02:14 PM
Originally Posted by HustleCat

Maybe less EXP for bigger parties and more for smaller ones


That's exactly how it works in D&D and in the old BG.
I'm sure Larian know it.
Posted By: odesseiron81 Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 02:20 PM
I don't mind a 4 person party. It's not the worst thing in the world. But 5 would be far more comfortable and also make for more diverse party compositions.

I'm going to make a comparison to MMO's. Completely different genre, I know and that might not be fair. But the Problem is very similar and relates. Particularly compared to FFXIV Online. But it is a problem many "new" (post WoW) MMO's have.

That is called the Trinity. Let's say you have a raid, you have 2 tanks, 2 healers, 4 DPS. There are no utility jobs. Or if there are, they are niche and not desired to be in the party. But in most cases with MMO's nowadays, again, using FFXIV as an example, a Bard is considered a DPS. A red mages is a DPS, and so on. It's a set group of those 3 kinds of jobs. No room for a true support job. Those classes may have support abilities integrated into them, but they're still a DPS. Certain jobs are preferred over others. Because there is no room for a class that doesn't offer the maximum amount of optimal output.

Final Fantasy XI Online did it extremely well. A standard party is 6. A tank, mage, healer, 2 DPS, support job. In that game there were several support jobs. You were encouraged to experiment. Much of the content in that game required support based classes.

Granted BGIII isn't a MMO but I feel a similar can occur. Instead of a Trinity we have a Rectology? lol. Or Rectangle based system. By having only 4 members, you limit the ability to designate someone to a utility/support job. Granted we can still have a varied composition of members, but many people are presumably less likely to experiment with classes. The average player will probably go Warrior/Rogue/Damage Dealer x2. Otherwise they might think their damage output is too low. Or survivability. Adding even 1 extra slot to party members creates a possibility of so much more diversity and party experimentation. I hope 5 members at the very least get considered.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 02:22 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by HustleCat

Maybe less EXP for bigger parties and more for smaller ones


That's exactly how it works in D&D and in the old BG.
I'm sure Larian know it.

More specifically, since in Larian games basically only the main character levels up and others simply keep up with him, what you are supposed to do is to adjust how much exp he gets according to how many partners he carries around.
Which is the norm. People talking about it as an obscure method that would require the longest, most elaborate inspection when it has been tried and tested over YEARS of practical use are ridiculous.


Vaguely legitimate worries, if any, would rather be that:
- you can eventually exploit this system levelling up faster and THEN grouping more companions anyway.
- at some point all characters are going to hit a level cap anyway.

To both the most appropriate response is "SO FUCKING WHAT?"
It's irrelevant. Just more fake concerns, in practical terms. These games are never "finely tuned" to make possible barely edging them. There's always a massive headroom making them completable at any skill level with a far from optimal setup.
Posted By: coredumped Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 02:36 PM
Hi, I am also in favour of having a maximum of 6 party members.

As many people have already argued here, using the argument that it slows down the game is silly. What slows down the game is the fact that they turned this into a turn based game (I think it's a horrible approach, but not gonna get into that here). The combat is already incredibly slow and dull with a 4 man party. And guess what... It's even slower and duller the more you reduce the party size because you have to wait longer and longer for the enemies to finish whatever they're doing before you can play again. So, if the issue at hand was merely the fact that it would "slow down the game", it would in fact improve it in every way as you can dispose of enemies faster, have more synergies and most important of all, you can actually play more often during combat.

Using balance as an argument is pretty uninformed (I guess it's the best way to put it without using other less cordial terms). Balance is something for the developers to worry about. We as early access players giving feedback are pretty much a sweat-shop QA team. Our job as individuals who want to better the game is give the suggestions we feel would do exactly that. We are not here to babysit them and say "oh, but the poor lonely devs already have other Jira cards open in their dashboard... let's not give them more work". That's... stupid. A 6 man party would better the game for a great variety of reasons which have already been stated here, so if you're gonna argue, use arguments that actually have an impact in the GAMEPLAY AND THE PLAYERS, not the developers. This is their job, they are paid to do it, and you pay for the end product.
Not to mention that balancing in this area of party members has been done for many years successfully. As anyone who's played the original Baldur's Gates can tell you, and they are over 20 years old.

With these issues aside, I feel the biggest problem with having a 4 man party as a maximum is that it is extremely restrictive to the player. Most people will want to have a balanced party. I don't care if you can make Gale into a swiss-army man and have him lockpick, disarm traps, charge a boss on a flaming unicorn wielding a staff and magic missiles. To me this just seems like I'm playing DOS 2 again, where every character does everything. This just removes uniqueness from your companions and the idea of roles (which I feel most people who enjoy DnD games like) kinda goes out the window. DnD games are amazing for many reasons and party management is one of them. 4 man means you're locked into a core that you can't really change without gimping yourself in effectiveness and/or fun. You'll most likely want a front liner to deal melee damage and/or tank (say a fighter), a support which can buff, heal, disable (e.g. cleric or druid), someone with utility for exploring, scouting, lockpicking, disarming traps, etc. (like a rogue) and a spell caster. Sure you have a party that can finish the game but you have no room for imagination or fun.

Also, regarding the mods argument: Sure, eventually modders can make a mod for the party to have a maximum of 6 members if Larian does nothing about this, but it is much better to have the actual people who are developing the game and have the insight and ability to fine tune it and balance it properly to do so as it would no doubt lead to a much better experience for everyone.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 02:55 PM
Originally Posted by Afaslizo
Originally Posted by Gray Ghost
I'm someone with several years of experience with cRPGs, a modest understanding of D&D and I certainly do not think I could make it through the game without Shadowheart and Lae'zel.
I killed Lae on my second character because I hated her on my first try because she is a stupid evil rage machine. Shadowheart is useful for acting as a bind tank and I take her along for that (she got Lae's plate armor) but her spells fail most of the time or do not matter so I don't really care for her(her personality is at least a bit wittier than the vampire torture porn fetichist and the aforementioned stupid evil warrior so I do not cringe every time she opens her mouth). The wizard is stupid but useful for crowd control. The warlock is useful for starting encounters. I can't bring myself to care for them beyond their carrying capacity and body mass to trick the AI in wasting turns they should use to take me down.

The game is beautiful, the plot interesting and I love cthulhumanoids but the party has far less personality combined than the red prince from Divinity Original Sin 2 and I loved that you could play the original characters in multiplayer. If that would be possible in this game I guess I could even like stupid Githyanki and emo vampire because playing as them might endear them to me. And i don't like Astarion either, thats why my PC is a rouge so I don't have to take him, I'm almost to the point where I recruit him and I'm hoping one of the options lets me kill him.


At some point the origin characters will be playable, they are even options in the character creation screen they have just not been implemented yet. I can't say anything about multiplayer as I haven't tried it but I don't see why they wouldn't be options when you can pick them to play as in single player.
Originally Posted by Alon Binyamin
I love how Tuco is all over the forums. Just posting like he's been training for this his whole life.
Tuco, you have more posts on this than the original poster - you probably care more about this as well XD.
Go you!


Yes Tuco is great, so many people are better at articulating my points than I am, and if I have nothing to add to someone else's comments I tend to just move to the next. I have found myself really wishing this forum had some kind of rating system as so many comments on here would get a thumbs up from me. This is a topic I am passionate about and I believe that Larian has the staff, budget and ability to add six player parties to the game as an option without it too much of a hassle and them relying on modder to force it into the game wrong, too many developer on pc seem to have "let the modders fix/do it". This is a full price AAA relese and at that point it is Larians responsibility not modders. but unfrotunatly my time is limited so I can't spend as much time as I'd like arguing this point on here, I've only just recruited Shadowheart in game so I haven't even had much chance to play sadly.
Originally Posted by HeavensBells
Originally Posted by Stabbey
I did the "local LAN game" trick to create four custom characters, and I was almost immediately struck with decision paralysis. My main character is a Rogue (AT), and I'm taking a Cleric as well, and then I had two slots to decide on some combination of Dwarf Fighter, Human Warlock, and Tiefling Wizard.

Can a Cleric alone be my front-line fighter? If I take the Warlock, how will he be able to see in the dark without the Light cantrip? I eventually went for Rogue/Cleric/Warlock/Wizard, but now I am worried if this is actually viable, because If I'm wrong, there's no way I can fix it later. Especially if I tried it in the full game where the rest of your companions go away.

Some people say that you don't need a dedicated Cleric or Rogue in the party, and you can multi-class and use backgrounds to cover roles... but how are people unfamiliar with D&D 5e supposed to understand the right way to build characters to do that? The choices made at character creation cannot be easily undone.

I really feel like I need at least 5 people in the party to feel comfortable. Four is too small.

****

In terms of the UI, the game already perfectly handles 6 portraits at the lower left. Lal'ezl and Us were added to my 4-person party without issue.

For the character panels, that's also not impossible to workaround. Display 4 panels as normal, and arrows at the edges so you can shift to show the other two. Like so:

[A B C D] E F
[B C D E] F A
[C D E F] A B
[D E F A] B C
[E F A B] C D

You'll still be able to compare any two party members together.


Thank you for that addition to the thread, it's exactly my point and done so beautifully.

By they way it need to be adressed there will be 12 classes (13 if they include the Artificer) in the game. How am I going to feel only being able to choose 3 more classes out of those 12 and have a good agency of my part if I'm really restricted? Multiclassing? Sometimes you don't wanna multiclass specially if BG3 will go until level 20.

I should also say that, this limite on party member will be so hurtful to the RPG aspect of the game people are actually going to min max choose which ones they bring and which characters they create (yeah hey you Shadowheart I like you but your stats are a mess for a Trickery Cleric). When more companions come around we might see some companions just never being a part of any playthrough only because you're so damn much restricted and forced to choose into specific roles instead of having one or two jack of all trades spot (hello bards).

Larian has already confirmed that the level cap is 10 and I know you really want Artificer, I've seen you bring them up a few times but I think if it is added it will probably be post launch and as most likely as a DLC since it's not one of the 12 announced classes for launch. But heres to hope, the more classes and choice the better.
Posted By: HustleCat Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 03:14 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by HustleCat

Maybe less EXP for bigger parties and more for smaller ones


That's exactly how it works in D&D and in the old BG.
I'm sure Larian know it.

More specifically, since in Larian games basically only the main character levels up and others simply keep up with him, what you are supposed to do is to adjust how much exp he gets according to how many partners he carries around.
Which is the norm. People talking about it as an obscure method that would require the longest, most elaborate inspection when it has been tried and tested over YEARS of practical use are ridiculous.


Vaguely legitimate worries, if any, would rather be that:
- you can eventually exploit this system levelling up faster and THEN grouping more companions anyway.
- at some point all characters are going to hit a level cap anyway.

To both the most appropriate response is "SO FUCKING WHAT?"
It's irrelevant. Just more fake concerns, in practical terms. These games are never "finely tuned" to make possible barely edging them. There's always a massive headroom making them completable at any skill level with a far from optimal setup.


That is true. You could level up with 2 early on and then turn act 3 into butter with your high level group of 6. I like a more challenging and less exploitable game. I think DOS2 had extra game options you could select that would change the game, but disable achievements. Maybe they could do that for 6 player party mode
Posted By: pincup Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 03:41 PM
I'm content with 4 companions, someone at Reddit summed it up nicely but judging by responses, this forum is filled with die hard fans of 6 members and no matter arguments everyone against them will hit a wall laugh so why bother. 4 that's the number and I hope it stays that way


Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 03:47 PM
Originally Posted by zsuszi
If we got more companion later 4 is extremly few and lacking, especially if u make your own hero (and why the hell not) . Plus yes I not really bothered the updated DOS engine + combat, and to be honest I think its really fitting for BG3 and close to the tabletop type gameplay BUT with bigger party size would be mor BG for me too.


When they announce that Larian was making BG3 I just assumed that it would be a six player party since it was BG3 and not DOS3, been an old school player and growing up with the original BG games I was really against it been turn based instead of RTwP but have since come round to the idea and am willing to give it a fair chance, but for this to feel like BG over DOS you are absolutely right that 6 party members will go a long way.
Originally Posted by PumatsHole
-1

Adding a dissenting voice here. You do not "need" a mage / cleric / any one role in a game based on the 5e system. The difference between a party of 4 and party of 5 is massive and will trivialize most encounters in a way that cannot be fixed by simply adding more HP. A party of 6 in this game would be preposterous.

You can heal by eating food (let alone by resting essentially at any time for free), and the game is much more combat focused than a traditional session of D&D where skills and utility spells are not nearly as significant. There is much less need here for a balanced party that covers all possible bases than there is in D&D 5e, which is already very forgiving in terms of party composition needs.

Originally Posted by tieboyx
The tabletop recommends a party size of 4, and in the turn based system, trash encounters would become a slog if they were balanced for 6 players, since they would have to add more mobs in each encounter to compensate.


Are you absolutely against a six man party under all circumstances? I agree maybe four would be a good base the game to be built on but do you disagree with even just the option to increase the party size for those that want it?

And I don't think bringing up D&D in its TTRPG form is a good argument, their you have a flesh and blood DM that can tweak every aspect of the game on the fly to accommodate the party and even fudge his own dice roles behind the screen to make things easier or harder as needed, where as every encounter in a computer game will be pretty much set in stone where suboptimal party builds will either not be viable or require immense amounts of grinding to overcome the challenges, where the DM around the table can naturally and seemlessly taylor the difficulty to said suboptimal party build.
Originally Posted by YelloB
+1

I understand there are arguments for a 4 man party max, having to do with encounter length and people apparently having trouble keeping up with managing 6 characters and their abilities. At least some such arguments were being made when Pillars of Eternity wanted to cut down the party from 1 to 2. Also there is and argument for wanting to limit the tools a party has at their disposal to encourage creative solutions to problems and Larian seem to like that kind of thing. But the truth is this will lead to pretty much every party being the same utility based one with 1 healer 1 rogue and the other 2 switching depending on the PC class.

6 characters wont take away the utility party problem entirely. Even with Baldur's Gate 1&2 There is always high pressure to have at least the healer and rogue. But atleast 6 party members leaves some slack there to play with.

Now BG3 is obviously turn based which makes the encounter length problem more prominent than in the real time with pause titles. But I would rather leave this up to the player and perhaps inform the player that with a bigger party combats will likely take longer.

I disagree with the OP about just plonking in the option for 6 party members without any balance considerations. I'd actually prefer a tweakable difficulty with the option for the player to increase the amount of enemies in combat situations. Give the player some of the DM's balancing power so to speak. I recently played BG1 again and I was kinda sad that I could not simply increase enemy amounts and would have been forced to also give them more health. I wanted core rules but with a bit more enemies.

Ofcourse this also puts a bit more pressure for having more companions. BG1 had tons, and I'm still not sure I've ever met them all. BG1 companions were also super simple with just a few combat barks and no dialogue. So it is going to require way more resources from Larian to add a full fledged companion. Pros and cons.



Originally Posted by Zress
The thing with 4 characters is that you are kinda forced to take specific members. In my playthrough I feel forced to take Shadowheart, Astarion and Lae'zel because they add something I need like a frontliner and healer and a rogue that can lockpick and find traps. But I would really rather hang around with Wyll and Gale which are much more nice and friendly and interesting to me. But in a way I feel I can't because then combat and exploration will be really really hard.


Please don't mistake my OP, I would dearly love for a six player party game to be properly balanced, but I think that if the difficulty settings are varied and good enough Larian wont have to do to much them selves to balance it as it will be achievable in the difficulty settings, if you can increase enemy group sizes or have it so stronger or evolved forms or better classes of the same enemies appear there will be a lot we can do with game rules to balance a party of six our selves.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 03:49 PM
Originally Posted by pincup
I'm content with 4 companions, someone at Reddit summed it up nicely, though judging by responses there is lots of die hard fans of 6 members and no matter arguments everyone against them will hit a wall smile so why bother. 4 that's the number

Well, a GOOD argument for four would go a long way.
Too bad there can't be anything else than half-hearted bullshit arguments for it, because we aren't talking about guessing randomly and taking a stab in the dark, here.

People who want a six-men party already played games that had them, have solid reasons to think it's better than the alternative and have tested their expectations in reality over and over across the years.


So when the "modern game designer" who watched five episodes of Gamemaker's Toolkit on youtube comes in, winks at you and tell you knowingly "Trust me, you don't really want a party of six, that would mess up TEH PERFECT BALANCE" he can't really expect anything more than being welcomed with loud burps.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 03:51 PM
Originally Posted by pincup
I'm content with 4 companions, someone at Reddit summed it up nicely, though judging by responses there is lots of die hard fans of 6 members and no matter arguments everyone against them will hit a wall smile so why bother. 4 that's the number.


That's fun, I think the exact same about those saying that 4 is the number and that explain it with totally invalid arguments...

The only valuable argument I read for a strict limitation to 4 characters comes from players that really like limitations. They see it as a challenge because they have to choose "more wisely". Why not, I can hear that...

But everything else (probably 80%+) comes from totally invalid and thoughtless argument.
(More variety with 4, slower combats, everything has to be balance again... If only it was atm...)
Posted By: Riandor Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:01 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by pincup
I'm content with 4 companions, someone at Reddit summed it up nicely, though judging by responses there is lots of die hard fans of 6 members and no matter arguments everyone against them will hit a wall smile so why bother. 4 that's the number



So when the "modern game designer" who watched five episodes of Gamemaker's Toolkit on youtube comes in, winks at you and tell you knowingly "Trust me, you don't really want a party of six, that would mess up TEH PERFECT BALANCE" he can't really expect anything more than being welcomed with loud burps.


Story balance / interaction.
It’s why I initially said 4 core plus extras up to 6. If you have a party of custom characters, less issue (and a whole other subject), but 6 origin characters all interacting the way I believe they are intended to, that potentially creates a workload headache Larian would prefer not to touch.

Again, you could limit it and say max 4 origin characters, though I hope for more work on customs so that they too have more interaction, or 2 mercs or whatever, but that’s the reason for 4 as I see it.

Larian know how to get 4 to work from experience, anything likely creates a timeline issue.

Just thinking out loud, I obviously don’t know either way, just trying to answer your question!
Posted By: Druid_NPC Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:03 PM
Well playing Devil's advocate here but the only decent arguments to be made for only 4 imo:

- Less micromanagement.

- More replayability.

The first is solved by listening to the feedback the players are already giving to inventory and movement.
The second, well, there will be custom characters and it is a Role Playing Game after all.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:03 PM
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk

Larian has already confirmed that the level cap is 10

already confirmed it is not 10
Posted By: Roarro Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:04 PM
I just love these arguments-4 person party was good enough in DOS, why change? Well maybe ask Larian to make another DOS game and leave Baldurs Gate to us ?
Posted By: jonn Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:07 PM
Just reading through the suggestions pages for DOS 1 & 2. Interestingly, I'm struggling to find any requests there at all for increasing the party size. Almost as if it's not critical to the game's enjoyment level in this engine.
Posted By: Flashistatouille Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:17 PM
Originally Posted by Roarro
I just love these arguments-4 person party was good enough in DOS, why change? Well maybe ask Larian to make another DOS game and leave Baldurs Gate to us ?


Originally Posted by jonn
Just reading through the suggestions pages for DOS 1 & 2. Interestingly, I'm struggling to find any requests there at all for increasing the party size. Almost as if it's not critical to the game's enjoyment level in this engine.


My 2 cents : it's not the same game, and not the same system.
In DOS and DOS2, classes are "fluid" : you can chose your skills the way you want.

Here, you have monolithic role for your companions, and monolithic needs (a frontliner, a rogue for traps and locks, a healer and a spellcaster, at the very least).
It's the reason why I feel, and I'm not alone, that a party of 4 is a little bit too restrictive here. With a party of 5, you have extra room in order to improvise and test some synergies.
A class like warlock (not really a frontliner, or a rogue, or a healer, and a limited spellcaster) can easily be included in a party of 5 ; it's harder to include a warlock in a party of 4.

Maybe this need will disappear with the possibility to multiclass?




Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:32 PM
It's clear to me what's missing in these discussions is that four takes away from those who like six, but six does NOT take anything away from those who like four. They can still play their game with four (or less). As for game "balance," you just balance the game for whatever number you decide as the developer, and then have a warning with the toggle to increase party size that says: hey, doing this may make your combat unchallenging. Including choices so different players can play and enjoy their game as they want is NEVER a bad thing. Not ever.
Posted By: pincup Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:35 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by pincup
I'm content with 4 companions, someone at Reddit summed it up nicely, though judging by responses there is lots of die hard fans of 6 members and no matter arguments everyone against them will hit a wall smile so why bother. 4 that's the number

Well, a GOOD argument for four would go a long way.
Too bad there can't be anything else than half-hearted bullshit arguments for it, because we aren't talking about guessing randomly and taking a stab in the dark, here.

People who want a six-men party already played games that had them, have solid reasons to think it's better than the alternative and have tested their expectations in reality over and over across the years.


So when the "modern game designer" who watched five episodes of Gamemaker's Toolkit on youtube comes in, winks at you and tell you knowingly "Trust me, you don't really want a party of six, that would mess up TEH PERFECT BALANCE" he can't really expect anything more than being welcomed with loud burps.


I doubt that. I'm pretty sure some good arguments were already posted and similar to Reddit, those arguments were downvoted to oblivion smile . Personally, ,if 4 provides deep companion relationship, be it cutscenes with companions breaking in, rich dialogue options, etc. but 6 would not, then the choice is simple for me - 4.

And why 6 would not? running business revolves around money but everyone seems to forget about that, maybe you are just too young laugh
but again, 4 is just perfect for deep companion relationship
Posted By: Uncle Lester Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:36 PM
Originally Posted by Flashistatouille
Originally Posted by jonn
Just reading through the suggestions pages for DOS 1 & 2. Interestingly, I'm struggling to find any requests there at all for increasing the party size. Almost as if it's not critical to the game's enjoyment level in this engine.


My 2 cents : it's not the same game, and not the same system.
In DOS and DOS2, classes are "fluid" : you can chose your skills the way you want.


Also... D:OS2 had less companions. We don't know how many it's going to be in the final game, but it's at the very least 7. Not a huge difference at this minimum, but BG3 is supposed to have more companion interactions, so the combinations of companions will matter much more, and a bigger party size is going to enable us to see more of those. In terms of replayability... there's no need to artificially inflate it, the game is going to have insane replayability anyway.
Posted By: kondenado Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:36 PM
I would completely agree with a 6-party member, or 5 party members.

IMHO it lets you to "bond" more with all companions it lets you more versatility (e.g a bard is generally a good 5th member of a party but almost never a pick for the 1-4 slot).

Posted By: pincup Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:41 PM
you lot are just like children who were denied cookies and don't understand that everything revolves around MONEY smile
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:41 PM
Originally Posted by pincup


I doubt that. I'm pretty sure some good arguments were already posted and similar to Reddit, those arguments were downvoted to oblivion smile .

Reddit is reddit, but maybe they weren't so good to begin with.

Quote
Personally, ,if 4 provides deep companion relationship, be it cutscenes with companions breaking in, rich dialogue options, etc. but 6 would not, then the choice is simple for me - 4.

You are basically saying "If 4 was done well and 6 was garbage I would prefer 4".
Well, no shit.

Originally Posted by jonn
Just reading through the suggestions pages for DOS 1 & 2. Interestingly, I'm struggling to find any requests there at all for increasing the party size. Almost as if it's not critical to the game's enjoyment level in this engine.

It's almost like they were entirely different games based on different rules and skill systems.
I wasn't a fan of 4 in DOS 1 and 2 either, but they are VERY different mechanically.

Originally Posted by pincup


And why 6 would not? running business revolves around money but everyone seems to forget about that, maybe you are just too young laugh
but again, 4 is just perfect for deep companion relationship


I'm 42, I've been into this genre since I was 12 or so starting with series like the old Ultima games and I'm also starting to get the impression you are running your mouth for the sake of it at this point.
"Money" is not an argument for anything here. You are just trying to sound smug without any real understanding of what you are talking about.

Posted By: pincup Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:49 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco


I'm 42, I've been into this genre since I was 12 or so starting with series like the old Ultima games and I'm also starting to get the impression you are running your mouth for the sake of it at this point.
"Money" is not an argument for anything here. You are just trying to sound smug without any real understanding of what you are talking about.



I'm sorry but i'm not the emotional one in here and if you think that money is not a good argument then there is nothing else that I have to add smile on top of what I already wrote and you only proved my point

Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:52 PM
Originally Posted by pincup

I'm sorry but i'm not the emotional one in here and if you think that money is not a good argument then there is nothing else that I have to add smile on top of what I already wrote and you only proved my point


Let me reword my objection: "money" would be a compelling argument if you were making a meaningful point about it, stressing how one solution clearly leads to way more money than the other.

You weren't.
You made a clumsy attempt to sound insightful while spouting some random nonsense about "kids who don't understand money" while acting like a smug fool.
Posted By: Grim Gaddy Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 04:54 PM
+1
Posted By: AleXty Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 05:22 PM

if I remember correctly even the old bgs were a maximum of 4, but I could be wrong. Honestly with a group of 4 there is a lot more strategy and I personally like it. Six would be too much, they should increase the difficulty of the mobs and should increase the mobs to face.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 05:25 PM
Originally Posted by kondenado
a bard is generally a good 5th member of a party but almost never a pick for the 1-4 slot).


same as Monk, Ranger, Warlock
Posted By: Ghorunt Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 05:28 PM
In a perfect world, I don't have an issue with 6 player parties. They could have the game the game perfectly balanced for a lone wolf style playthrough, 4 players or 6 players.

In practice, that balance is hard.
In BG1, the XP cap was easily reached even with a 6 man party, so running with anything less was shooting yourself in the foot.
in BG2, as a party of 4 (not so much with 5), you would get HLAs much earlier and you would get much more. This made a 4 man party considerably more powerful
in DOS2, lone wolf is considered to be a lot more powerful than 4 man party.

There is also another knock on effect. If you allow 6 man parties there need to be more companions available. Would you rather have more companions which are more shallow or fewer companions with more backstory and quests? I suppose this is down to personal preference, but I would choose the latter. Replaying BG2, I hate how shallow most NPCs are. Minsc, while much beloved, does not even have a side quest. He only has a couple of funny lines in dialogue now and then.

You also need to consider that the devs don't have infinite time to work on the game. Would you rather have them spend that time balancing the game for different player counts? Or would you rather have them spend that time on more side quests or adding more replayability?

I also do not agree with all the reasons for introducing higher player counts:
  • Higher player counts is not a solution for the difficulty of combat - that needs to be tweaked by itself
  • Atomic party is not that needed anymore - anyone can do rogue skills, almost all classes have access to (utility) spells. The most needed role is probably a healer with how much dmg you take in combat, but in theory, short rests were added in 5e to reduce the need for healing


In the end, while I am not opposed to 6 player parties, but I don't think it adds much value either. I guess we will have to agree to disagree...



Posted By: Hachina Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 05:32 PM
Originally Posted by Ghorunt
In a perfect world, I don't have an issue with 6 player parties. They could have the game the game perfectly balanced for a lone wolf style playthrough, 4 players or 6 players.

In practice, that balance is hard.
In BG1, the XP cap was easily reached even with a 6 man party, so running with anything less was shooting yourself in the foot.
in BG2, as a party of 4 (not so much with 5), you would get HLAs much earlier and you would get much more. This made a 4 man party considerably more powerful
in DOS2, lone wolf is considered to be a lot more powerful than 4 man party.

There is also another knock on effect. If you allow 6 man parties there need to be more companions available. Would you rather have more companions which are more shallow or fewer companions with more backstory and quests? I suppose this is down to personal preference, but I would choose the latter. Replaying BG2, I hate how shallow most NPCs are. Minsc, while much beloved, does not even have a side quest. He only has a couple of funny lines in dialogue now and then.

You also need to consider that the devs don't have infinite time to work on the game. Would you rather have them spend that time balancing the game for different player counts? Or would you rather have them spend that time on more side quests or adding more replayability?

I also do not agree with all the reasons for introducing higher player counts:
  • Higher player counts is not a solution for the difficulty of combat - that needs to be tweaked by itself
  • Atomic party is not that needed anymore - anyone can do rogue skills, almost all classes have access to (utility) spells. The most needed role is probably a healer with how much dmg you take in combat, but in theory, short rests were added in 5e to reduce the need for healing


In the end, while I am not opposed to 6 player parties, but I don't think it adds much value either. I guess we will have to agree to disagree...





Minsc is one of the most emblematic character ever in any RPG. He precisely show you that you don't need 10 sidequest to be unforgettable.You only need a few good lines and a hamster. I'd rather have 10 minsc that 2 boring character with sidequests.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 05:57 PM
Originally Posted by AleXty

if I remember correctly even the old bgs were a maximum of 4

You don't.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 07:05 PM
Originally Posted by ultraulf
I personally really enjoy the party size, played through all of the early access and the difficulty seems just right.



I'm gald for you, you get to play your game how you like best, this thread isn't about taking that option away from you, it's about give people who like the six party member set up from the original BG games, How do you feel about the option to choose your party size be it 1, 4, 5 or 6 so everyone can play how they want?
Originally Posted by Tuco
Since I just mentioned it in my thread about party controls, I should probably give a quick reminder to anyone in favor of a six-members party:

don't overlook giving feedback on the issue of how the party is managed/moved around, because solving it is basically a pre-requirement to actually get the party expansion you want.
The chain/unchain system and its clumsy auto-follow work already poorly enough now. With six men in your party it would turn into an unmitigated disaster.



I'd be happy with selectable formations the same as in the old Infinity engine games, I think it worked really well in them and with a little tweaking could probably service this game quite nicely.
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 07:20 PM
Yeah. six character party is the way to go. Or at least five if there needs to be some kind of compromise.
If people are afraid that six character setups would make the game too easy, then maybe party size could be tied to the difficulty setting before you start your adventure?
Posted By: RKane Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 07:48 PM
Originally Posted by jonn

I'm only opposed to it until the devs come out and say that it is something they will be able to manage along with all the other improvements they want to make. Until then it is a possibility, no matter how much you shout, scoff and name-call, that this could use up resources that could be better used elsewhere. For me and many others the extra party size isn't that big of a deal.


I couldn't help but laugh at this. Literally earlier in this post I said this:
Originally Posted by RKane

Anyone who complains about 'balancing issues' when an idea is presented is a selfish moron. It's like the argument "It would take too much time to impliment" from people with no coding experience and surmounts to "I'm happy with it so why should I accomodate your idea".

You quite literally can't make any legitimate criticism other than the 2 most useless, unhelpful and innane responses.

1. Balance.
Unless it affects you, it shouldn't bother you.
It's perfectly reasonable to say "My only concern would be balance of 4 player games. I wouldn't play with 6" or something like that.
It's not okay to say "I oppose this idea and unless I get written proof from the devs that it won't detract from other things I wont change" is negative, argumentitive and arrogant. Like, who the hell do you think you are you spoiled brat?

2. Resources. Be it cost, time, or anything else.
Again, perfectly reasonable to say "I wouldn't use it therefore I'd rather the time was spent elsewhere"
But ultimately resources are not something for you to decide. It's the devs. And it relates to what I said about balance. They may or may not decide to do something based on how much work they have to get done. The devs will decide whether it's worth it based on that workload. They will decide whether something gets done based on resources, not you.

I'm not trying to pick a fight but these two responses are so commenly used to dismis valid feature requests / addons that would make others happy without affecting your gameplay. There is no reason for you to be opposed to the suggestion unless it affects your gameplay. Literally none. So stop picking a fight and talking crap about something you've already given your opinion on.
Posted By: Tomoya Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 07:50 PM
+1

I have to agree with the OP.

Having four in a DnD setting is very limiting and doesn't feel good. I would hope to be able to bring one or two additional classes that are not entirely combat optimized, but when you only have four slots its a tough ask.

If Larian is unwilling to do 6, I would at least like to see 5 implemented.
Posted By: Smash Dently Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 07:51 PM
Playing Baldur's gate I always ran 6 in my party, needed someone to take abuse, learn scrolls, heal, melee damage, range, and general support. 2nd editions rules kinda demanded it if you didn't want to miss out.

All that said I would prefer NOT to have 6 members in the party because the forced diversity simply isn't there. I can have my wizard/cleric heal/ranged dps (still getting used to wizard being able to heal) if I need a tank fighter or cleric covers it, ranged physical dps can be covered by fighter, ranger, rogue. Lock picking and trap disarming can really go to anyone with a decent sex score so far so each character really brings with it a lot more value with it.

The other thing to consider is that the original games rewarded exp according to party size and 3 is kinda built in a milestone fashion.

Really at the end of the day you're only limited by your creativity. I've run comps with no healer just fine (especially with food all over the place and short rests)
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 07:55 PM
Originally Posted by Smash Dently

Really at the end of the day you're only limited by your creativity. I've run comps with no healer just fine (especially with food all over the place and short rests)


But what if you want your healer, your tank, your caster DPS, your range DPS and more ?

"Because it works" is not a satisfying and valid answer to all those players that want more characters in their party...

The game itself limit my creativity...
Posted By: Stabbey Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:05 PM
Originally Posted by Smash Dently
I can have my wizard/cleric heal/ranged dps (still getting used to wizard being able to heal)


Don't, it's not staying.
Posted By: Sartoz Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:24 PM
This is a computer game... not a table top one. An active party of four is plenty for a number of reasons of which combat is (my subjective opinion) the main reason. Alowances need to be made for the new medium. Besides, you can have all of them in the camp (Early Access game).

Larian created meaty characters, well written (imo). They've shown their personalities and some their secrets . All are difficult nuts to crack. Two more in the party won't add anything except slow down combat even more. Besides, I'm starting to hear banter between them ( recent patches added the banter?). Plus, one of the characters I swapped in is hitting on the girls. Amusing... my dialogue options need to be updated stat.. (lol).
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:27 PM
Originally Posted by Sartoz
This is a computer game... not a table top one. An active party of four is plenty for a number of reasons

Well, you started making a right premise and used it to jump to the wrong conclusion.
The fact that is a computer game and not a live tabletop session is precisely why it shines the most if you add a larger party and cast of characters compared to the latter.
Posted By: Smash Dently Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:34 PM
Originally Posted by Stabbey
Originally Posted by Smash Dently
I can have my wizard/cleric heal/ranged dps (still getting used to wizard being able to heal)


Don't, it's not staying.

I can certainly live with this lol was gonna make me question ever rolling a different caster.
Posted By: jonn Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:43 PM
Originally Posted by RKane
Originally Posted by jonn

I'm only opposed to it until the devs come out and say that it is something they will be able to manage along with all the other improvements they want to make. Until then it is a possibility, no matter how much you shout, scoff and name-call, that this could use up resources that could be better used elsewhere. For me and many others the extra party size isn't that big of a deal.


I couldn't help but laugh at this. Literally earlier in this post I said this:
Originally Posted by RKane

Anyone who complains about 'balancing issues' when an idea is presented is a selfish moron. It's like the argument "It would take too much time to impliment" from people with no coding experience and surmounts to "I'm happy with it so why should I accomodate your idea".

You quite literally can't make any legitimate criticism other than the 2 most useless, unhelpful and innane responses.

1. Balance.
Unless it affects you, it shouldn't bother you.
It's perfectly reasonable to say "My only concern would be balance of 4 player games. I wouldn't play with 6" or something like that.
It's not okay to say "I oppose this idea and unless I get written proof from the devs that it won't detract from other things I wont change" is negative, argumentitive and arrogant. Like, who the hell do you think you are you spoiled brat?

2. Resources. Be it cost, time, or anything else.
Again, perfectly reasonable to say "I wouldn't use it therefore I'd rather the time was spent elsewhere"
But ultimately resources are not something for you to decide. It's the devs. And it relates to what I said about balance. They may or may not decide to do something based on how much work they have to get done. The devs will decide whether it's worth it based on that workload. They will decide whether something gets done based on resources, not you.

I'm not trying to pick a fight but these two responses are so commenly used to dismis valid feature requests / addons that would make others happy without affecting your gameplay. There is no reason for you to be opposed to the suggestion unless it affects your gameplay. Literally none. So stop picking a fight and talking crap about something you've already given your opinion on.


Listen, I'm entitled to my opinion just as much as you are. And nowhere am I claiming to be responsible for making a decision for the devs. I literally said it is for them to decide. My *opinion* is based on the fact that this game engine has been developed around 4 characters since way before BG3 was even an idea, and going back to the drawing board at this stage when it has taken them years just to get to this point (bearing in mind they have already delayed EA release by 6 months at this point) and still have so much to do yet, may not be entirely the best idea, no matter how many people are pissing their pants about it on the forum.

So scream at me all you like, but like I said, I will hold this opinion until the people that can actually answer (Larian) do so.
Posted By: Roarro Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:52 PM
Not that I nitpick but i think BG3 idea was way before even 1 Divinity game. Engine is not a problem, its literally made to add things to it xD. Problem are players of DOS demanding another DOS game on DOS rules. Go ask Larian to made it then, what's stopping you ?
Posted By: Smash Dently Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 08:53 PM
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by Smash Dently

Really at the end of the day you're only limited by your creativity. I've run comps with no healer just fine (especially with food all over the place and short rests)


But what if you want your healer, your tank, your caster DPS, your range DPS and more ?

"Because it works" is not a satisfying and valid answer to all those players that want more characters in their party...

The game itself limit my creativity...


Just because you are given a smaller canvas does not mean you can not paint the same picture. Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game around 6 characters the same argument could be made "I'm being limited by only having 6 characters" lol not to mention the fact that if you scout ahead you can plan things out and trade characters if you think someone isn't going to bring what you need to the table. You can bring and entirely different comp to every individual fight and none of your characters fall behind.
Posted By: KingNothing69 Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:33 PM
A party of up to six is the correct decision. Less than that and the game doesn't feel like Baldur's Gate. Solo the game, take only a few companions, or have a full party. That's how the original games worked. Leave it up to the individual and stop thinking that because a party size of four is enough for you that it is OK for everyone else.

And why are we pretending like the game is balanced as is in EA? Do people really think this is how the final game will be? That Larian won't change anything? That there won't be any difficulty sliders? That we can't opt into ways to make the game more or less challenging based on player preference? That's just crazy. It's also stupid to complain about how other people play the game not working with your play style or rudely pretending like you know the financials of these asks and that us peasants posting in the Suggestions & Feedback forum are too dumb to know what we want. Let people play the way they want. D&D is about giving people the power to create stories how they want. That's why the ruleset is so flexible and allows for homebrew (mods for tabletop).

Although if it ends up being that party is fixed after Act 1, then I'll really lose the desire to play this game. Party experimentation is KEY to Baldur's Gate. If you were stuck with the same party for the whole Bhaalspawn saga, then that would suck in a very major way and the pocket plane would be a very sad place.
Posted By: Smash Dently Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:47 PM
Originally Posted by KingNothing69
A party of up to six is the correct decision. Less than that and the game doesn't feel like Baldur's Gate. Solo the game, take only a few companions, or have a full party. That's how the original games worked. Leave it up to the individual and stop thinking that because a party size of four is enough for you that it is OK for everyone else.

And why are we pretending like the game is balanced as is in EA? Do people really think this is how the final game will be? That Larian won't change anything? That there won't be any difficulty sliders? That we can't opt into ways to make the game more or less challenging based on player preference? That's just crazy. It's also stupid to complain about how other people play the game not working with your play style or rudely pretending like you know the financials of these asks and that us peasants posting in the Suggestions & Feedback forum are too dumb to know what we want. Let people play the way they want. D&D is about giving people the power to create stories how they want. That's why the ruleset is so flexible and allows for homebrew (mods for tabletop).

Although if it ends up being that party is fixed after Act 1, then I'll really lose the desire to play this game. Party experimentation is KEY to Baldur's Gate. If you were stuck with the same party for the whole Bhaalspawn saga, then that would suck in a very major way and the pocket plane would be a very sad place.


I sincerely doubt Larian will lock us into a single party set up this go around. The relationships, the Camp, everyone staying equal level, it really doesn't lead me to believe we won't be able to change people out as long as we haven't run everyone else off with our decisions lol
Posted By: OneManArmy Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 09:54 PM
Guys, come on. The battles are already too long, and the balance is more or less normal. 6 characters in the party are:
1.) will make the passage of fewer characters more difficult;
2.) Will force developers to make enemies stronger
3.) a series of fights will be too easy or too hard
4.) Will slow down the battles even more
5.) you will have to constantly resurrect party members

4 characters in the party are fine with me, IMHO
Posted By: Hachina Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 10:12 PM
Originally Posted by OneManArmy
Guys, come on. The battles are already too long, and the balance is more or less normal. 6 characters in the party are:
1.) will make the passage of fewer characters more difficult;
2.) Will force developers to make enemies stronger
3.) a series of fights will be too easy or too hard
4.) Will slow down the battles even more
5.) you will have to constantly resurrect party members

4 characters in the party are fine with me, IMHO


1) no. Because the experience is shared equally among player, less companions = stronger companions. That how its worked in the original game.

2) They may have to do that. So what? its merely changing stats. Nothing gamebreaking here.

3) that's already the case . Actually, I don't know a single C-rpg that has perfect balance over all its fight.

4) No, its may actually make it faster. When you are fighting 26 gobelins, having a couple of more companions to quickly kill the trashmobs will reduce the number of turn the enemy take; To balance it out, you can make big enemy stronger. And anyways, when you have fight that are 4vs 26 , and you have to wait 3 minute every turn for the enemy to act, I don't think a couple of more companions are going to be much of a problem time wise.

5) Making the enemy 30% stronger isn't such a drastic change that they ll instagib character. Instead of doing 7 dmg, they ll do 10 . Instead of doing 20 , they ll do 26 . Instead of doing 2 dmg, they ll do 3 . This ll barely change the number of hit you can take.


But more character will benefit the game in many way :

A) more interractions between party member, In BG1 and 2 , Party member would often banter, quarrels, initiate friendly talk and whats not.

B) more battle combo options, synergic option.

C) allow for more exotic pick outside of cleric/rogue/fight/wizard usual core picks.

D) allow to discover more companion in a walkthrough. Personnally, I'm not a fond of redoing the whole game just to change one or two companion s(assuming you ll maybe keep one you like most).

E) may add replay values, as , as Iv said before, you have more synergy and battle option to work with.

F) allow for stronger single ennemy, which add to epicness and challenge.

H) Feels more like Baldurs gate. BG always was six character.

I) Give a better sense of scale for the fight.

6 Characters in a party would be fine, IMHO.

Posted By: OneManArmy Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 10:22 PM
Originally Posted by Hachina


6 Characters in a party would be fine, IMHO.



Thanks for the detailed answer, may be you convinced me. But it will depend on how many characters there will be in the game.

I want everyone to be well worked out, the quantity is not at the expense of quality. They must have own rich stories, dialogues, personal quests, romance opportunities. Companions like "we" from the prologue and mercenaries are not needed

If Larian can do it all, then it will be very cool
Posted By: Hachina Re: Party Size Discussion - 14/10/20 10:36 PM
Originally Posted by OneManArmy
Originally Posted by Hachina


6 Characters in a party would be fine, IMHO.



Thanks for the detailed answer, may be you convinced me. But it will depend on how many characters there will be in the game.

I want everyone to be well worked out, the quantity is not at the expense of quality. They must have own rich stories, dialogues, personal quests, romance opportunities. Companions like "we" from the prologue and mercenaries are not needed

If Larian can do it all, then it will be very cool


Your welcome . Yeah, I agree ! Would be great if we could have these companions with the quality you described. I'm hopeful, I think such an experienced and skilled team can pull it, but they may favour other stuff.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 07:02 AM
Originally Posted by Smash Dently
Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game

lol this argue again
what game they need to rebalance?
there no balanced game, all we have is EA which not balanced at all
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 07:07 AM
Agree with Arion. Most of the encounters are terribly balanced in multiple ways atm.
Posted By: Tomoya Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 07:10 AM
The good news is even if Larian doesn't increase the party size by default, I am confident the modding community will due to the obvious demand.

Not saying I don't want Larian to include it themselves, but still it's something.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 08:19 AM
just a note

https://www.dndbeyond.com/forums/d-d-beyond-general/general-discussion/21267-ideal-party-size

and good explanation why there no place for hybrid class in 4ppl party composition

https://ludusludorum.com/2016/10/16/perfect-party-size/
Posted By: Ormgaard Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 08:22 AM
Just put in a checkbox option in the game.
This is supposed to be an adaption to D&D any GM would be able to acommodate between those party sizes.
The code can allready handle it , i just made a playthough with 2 of my friends and kaezeland & Us joined the party as a 4th & 5th party members in the tuturial.

Checkbok for partysizes please (alongside alot of other checkboxes for us to customize the game)

1. Party size of 4
2. Party size of 5
3. Party size of 6
Posted By: coredumped Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 11:12 AM
Originally Posted by Sartoz

Larian created meaty characters, well written (imo). They've shown their personalities and some their secrets . All are difficult nuts to crack. Two more in the party won't add anything except slow down combat even more. Besides, I'm starting to hear banter between them ( recent patches added the banter?). Plus, one of the characters I swapped in is hitting on the girls. Amusing... my dialogue options need to be updated stat.. (lol).



I've seen some people say this regarding the companions in BG3 being well written and have secrets and whatnot (imo they're not. they're pretty generic and uninteresting with some being terribly written and just sound overly exaggerated and forced. Gale is the saving grace so far, but not by much) and use this as an argument for why 4 people in the party is the right amount.
Now, not to say that you can't enjoy what you're seeing in BG3 regarding the companions, but this really makes me feel like you haven't played a game that really did this properly. For instance, I'dd wager you never played the originals. You certainly haven't met Edwin, Korgan, Minsc, Keldorn, Jan, etc. Characters in BG2 had SO MUCH more depth and flavour than the ones seen here. Their writing and voice acting is so many times better than here... And guess what, they were absolutely amazing in BG2, especially in a 6 man party.

As to "slowing down the combat"... I've talked about this in other threads already but this is so wrong that it pains me how it's not immediately obvious to everyone. More companions would not only increase the pace of the combat encounters since you'dd have more tools at your disposal to deal with the opposition as well as make it much more interactive as you would have more turns per round due to more characters to play. Take for instance the fight against the Kuo-toa, or any other fight vs a significant number of goblins.. It feels like ages until I can do something in the fight again. Having to suffer through the time those buggers take throughout their turns becomes boring after some time, especially because they're meaningless trivial fights without any risk or difficulty. Most of those fights I thanked my lucky stars for having two monitors, as I did my turn and then could watch something else in the other monitor while the AI tries to do something. If people feel combat is slow (which it is) it is due to the nature of making this a turn-based game. In DOS turn based made sense since any one of your characters could do a bunch of actions in a single turn and had almost free movement skills that covered the entire battlefield. I feel it is not really suited for a DnD computer game since there really isn't a lot a character can do in a turn so you spend most of your time waiting for the AI to finish their stuff.

Someone also mentioned as an argument vs 6 man parties the fact that it would include more micro-management. I mean... I don't even really know how to respond to this as I feel this is just completely silly (for lack of a better word). You're complaining that you don't like having to do actions during your turns or that you want to have the minimum number of turns possible in a game like this where the whole point of these games is the complexity they have and the things you can do. By that logic let's just turn this into a clicker game where it plays by itself and you collect the coins. Fuck it, let's just make the max party size = 1, hey, it's less micro-management!
Posted By: JDCrenton Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 11:26 AM
Originally Posted by coredumped
Originally Posted by Sartoz

Larian created meaty characters, well written (imo). They've shown their personalities and some their secrets . All are difficult nuts to crack. Two more in the party won't add anything except slow down combat even more. Besides, I'm starting to hear banter between them ( recent patches added the banter?). Plus, one of the characters I swapped in is hitting on the girls. Amusing... my dialogue options need to be updated stat.. (lol).



I've seen some people say this regarding the companions in BG3 being well written and have secrets and whatnot (imo they're not. they're pretty generic and uninteresting with some being terribly written and just sound overly exaggerated and forced. Gale is the saving grace so far, but not by much) and use this as an argument for why 4 people in the party is the right amount.
Now, not to say that you can't enjoy what you're seeing in BG3 regarding the companions, but this really makes me feel like you haven't played a game that really did this properly. For instance, I'dd wager you never played the originals. You certainly haven't met Edwin, Korgan, Minsc, Keldorn, Jan, etc. Characters in BG2 had SO MUCH more depth and flavour than the ones seen here. Their writing and voice acting is so many times better than here... And guess what, they were absolutely amazing in BG2, especially in a 6 man party.

As to "slowing down the combat"... I've talked about this in other threads already but this is so wrong that it pains me how it's not immediately obvious to everyone. More companions would not only increase the pace of the combat encounters since you'dd have more tools at your disposal to deal with the opposition as well as make it much more interactive as you would have more turns per round due to more characters to play. Take for instance the fight against the Kuo-toa, or any other fight vs a significant number of goblins.. It feels like ages until I can do something in the fight again. Having to suffer through the time those buggers take throughout their turns becomes boring after some time, especially because they're meaningless trivial fights without any risk or difficulty. Most of those fights I thanked my lucky stars for having two monitors, as I did my turn and then could watch something else in the other monitor while the AI tries to do something. If people feel combat is slow (which it is) it is due to the nature of making this a turn-based game. In DOS turn based made sense since any one of your characters could do a bunch of actions in a single turn and had almost free movement skills that covered the entire battlefield. I feel it is not really suited for a DnD computer game since there really isn't a lot a character can do in a turn so you spend most of your time waiting for the AI to finish their stuff.

Someone also mentioned as an argument vs 6 man parties the fact that it would include more micro-management. I mean... I don't even really know how to respond to this as I feel this is just completely silly (for lack of a better word). You're complaining that you don't like having to do actions during your turns or that you want to have the minimum number of turns possible in a game like this where the whole point of these games is the complexity they have and the things you can do. By that logic let's just turn this into a clicker game where it plays by itself and you collect the coins. Fuck it, let's just make the max party size = 1, hey, it's less micro-management!


What you don't get my man is that all these ppl just want a watered down version of D&D which is precisely why Larian went for 5e in the first place. In other words they really just wanted D:OS3 instead of what we have atm. So you could say we even got lucky.
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 07:46 PM
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Smash Dently
Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game

lol this argue again
what game they need to rebalance?
there no balanced game, all we have is EA which not balanced at all



Yeah, and even if it was. I don't think it would be terrible difficult to add some kind of dynamic balacing to the game that accomodate for your chosen party size. Maybe set it as a starting option when you start a new game. Choose between solo or 2-6 party members. And once the game is started the balance is set and you're locked to the maximum party size of your choise.
Posted By: Hachina Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 08:00 PM
Originally Posted by JDCrenton
Originally Posted by coredumped
Originally Posted by Sartoz

Larian created meaty characters, well written (imo). They've shown their personalities and some their secrets . All are difficult nuts to crack. Two more in the party won't add anything except slow down combat even more. Besides, I'm starting to hear banter between them ( recent patches added the banter?). Plus, one of the characters I swapped in is hitting on the girls. Amusing... my dialogue options need to be updated stat.. (lol).



I've seen some people say this regarding the companions in BG3 being well written and have secrets and whatnot (imo they're not. they're pretty generic and uninteresting with some being terribly written and just sound overly exaggerated and forced. Gale is the saving grace so far, but not by much) and use this as an argument for why 4 people in the party is the right amount.
Now, not to say that you can't enjoy what you're seeing in BG3 regarding the companions, but this really makes me feel like you haven't played a game that really did this properly. For instance, I'dd wager you never played the originals. You certainly haven't met Edwin, Korgan, Minsc, Keldorn, Jan, etc. Characters in BG2 had SO MUCH more depth and flavour than the ones seen here. Their writing and voice acting is so many times better than here... And guess what, they were absolutely amazing in BG2, especially in a 6 man party.

As to "slowing down the combat"... I've talked about this in other threads already but this is so wrong that it pains me how it's not immediately obvious to everyone. More companions would not only increase the pace of the combat encounters since you'dd have more tools at your disposal to deal with the opposition as well as make it much more interactive as you would have more turns per round due to more characters to play. Take for instance the fight against the Kuo-toa, or any other fight vs a significant number of goblins.. It feels like ages until I can do something in the fight again. Having to suffer through the time those buggers take throughout their turns becomes boring after some time, especially because they're meaningless trivial fights without any risk or difficulty. Most of those fights I thanked my lucky stars for having two monitors, as I did my turn and then could watch something else in the other monitor while the AI tries to do something. If people feel combat is slow (which it is) it is due to the nature of making this a turn-based game. In DOS turn based made sense since any one of your characters could do a bunch of actions in a single turn and had almost free movement skills that covered the entire battlefield. I feel it is not really suited for a DnD computer game since there really isn't a lot a character can do in a turn so you spend most of your time waiting for the AI to finish their stuff.

Someone also mentioned as an argument vs 6 man parties the fact that it would include more micro-management. I mean... I don't even really know how to respond to this as I feel this is just completely silly (for lack of a better word). You're complaining that you don't like having to do actions during your turns or that you want to have the minimum number of turns possible in a game like this where the whole point of these games is the complexity they have and the things you can do. By that logic let's just turn this into a clicker game where it plays by itself and you collect the coins. Fuck it, let's just make the max party size = 1, hey, it's less micro-management!


What you don't get my man is that all these ppl just want a watered down version of D&D which is precisely why Larian went for 5e in the first place. In other words they really just wanted D:OS3 instead of what we have atm. So you could say we even got lucky.


I'm not so sure about that. Baldurs gate was complicated, but not THAT complicated. I did the game as a 7years old. Anyone could do these game if he tried. If anything, people might be afraid of the ''relative complexity'', but once you try it, its not hard at all to catch on to the system and learn as the game goes. CA, THACO, party size, active pause, Turn by turn, whatever, all of that is easy enough for kids, so grown up should have a easy time learning it.

About the whole micro concern :. Micro refers to the controls of one unit. For example, there is a tons of micro in LoL : you re always controlling one champion, after all, and clicking like a madman to use spell and move. You micro all the time. Is it hard ? no. But its certainly harder than doing two actions in a Turn based game like BG3. Micro is only hard in games like STR where you have several units you need to control at once. That is not the case in BG3. BG3 micro is very easy. Controlling 4, or 6 heros one at a time is extremely easy. Because you can control one character at a time, at your own pace, there is no stress, there is no fast reaction or fast thinking needed, you can take your time.
Posted By: nation Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 09:37 PM
Originally Posted by Peranor
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Smash Dently
Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game

lol this argue again
what game they need to rebalance?
there no balanced game, all we have is EA which not balanced at all



Yeah, and even if it was. I don't think it would be terrible difficult to add some kind of dynamic balacing to the game that accomodate for your chosen party size. Maybe set it as a starting option when you start a new game. Choose between solo or 2-6 party members. And once the game is started the balance is set and you're locked to the maximum party size of your choise.

+1 i think this would be a really good idea too - something like a 'Behind the DM Screen' pre campaign/character creation screen where you would be able to designate a variety of options that would carry over into the full campaign, many of which could potentially speak to a variety of the discussions and alleviate some concerns on these forums and could be really helpful when setting up a mp campaign specifically.

things that you could possibly toggle that would impact the campaign's 'difficulty/balance', but im sure others here could add to this list
-stat allocation - roll, buy, array
-feat at first level (id argue this could really open up gameplay but could warrant an overall campaign challenge increase)
-classes/races/feats/spell filter etc (more mp oriented tho)
-party size 1-6, but could see why 1,2,4,6 may be more feasible to include and 'balance' at this point (id argue that players should always be able to have a max of 6 open party slots bc enables more player choice and allow players to decide themselves to go 4 or 6, etc.)
-use healing potion as a bonus action
-scale of surface effects
-show/hide dice rolls - im not sure its a good thing to know a dc of a skill check or see that you failed that perception roll, but that being said id rather the dc be set and apply my bonus to the die roll instead of reducing the dc as i think it currently works (id also think this systems presentation may need some tweaking - not a fan of jumping away from the dialogue to just fail a die roll)
-limit info that can be gained from 'examining' npcs and enemies, such as hp or ac
-party interaction during dialogue and trading/bartering (maybe more mp tho)
-more specific class tweaks as the 'dm' allows (ie swapping warlock spells, respecs, multi-class requirements)

i feel the above list (outside maybe the scale of the surface effects) are all common dnd 'house rules' topics you discuss around the table that could also really work to refine an bg3 campaign to fit each persons playstyle. obviously this is all just thoughts/theorycrafting suggestions but i think in particular the discussion regarding having 4v6 party slots and possible required balancing could find solutions for both perspectives with a toggable pre-campaign dynamic balance as mentioned above by peranor

also, maybe tangentially related, but i think balance should be focused around encounters not party size or level - i want to adapt to the challenges and world of bg3 not the opposite way around
Posted By: Black_Elk Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 09:43 PM
They can't have failed to notice by now that it will be a real sticking point for a lot people. This is already one of the longest threads in this feedback section, and its been brought up in many others.

I'm not terribly inspired by the idea that if the devs don't do it, then motivated modders will be able to solve everything. This doesn't strike me as a game that will be particularly easy to mod. NWN was basically a modders dream, but lack of party control, with henchmen instead of a full party kinda sank it, despite all the other innovative things that were done. It was a perennial disappointment there even with like 3 expansions and a sequel, that we never got a party control system there. And that one was by the same developer. Larian is so much closer, much much closer to the BG vibe than NWN ever was, but they are kinda shooting themselves in the foot by hamstringing us with a party limited to 4.

4 makes it feel like Valkyrie needs food!

6 is what we want lol





Posted By: Tomoya Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 09:45 PM
Originally Posted by Black_Elk
They can't have failed to notice by now that it will be a real sticking point for a lot people. This is already one of the longest threads in this feedback section, and its been brought up in many others.

I'm not terribly inspired by the idea that if the devs don't do it, then motivated modders will be able to solve everything. This doesn't strike me as a game that will be particularly easy to mod. NWN was basically a modders dream, but lack of party control, with henchmen instead of a full party kinda sank it, despite all the other innovative things that were done. It was a perennial disappointment there even with like 3 expansions and a sequel, that we never got a party control system there. And that one was by the same developer. Larian is so much closer, much much closer to the BG vibe than NWN ever was, but they are kinda shooting themselves in the foot by hamstringing us with a party limited to 4.

4 makes it feel like Valkyrie needs food!

6 is what we want lol






Divinity has a simular mod available and the games are largely based on the same coding. You can expect the same level of mod support for BG III as they really embrace their mods, even adding a large number of them in free updates to the base game.

Again, I am not saying I wouldn't prefer them to do it themselves, but at least you can be somewhat assured you'll have the ability either way.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 09:57 PM
"Don't worry, mods will fix it" has always been a bullshit "comfort argument", anyway.
1- There's no guarantee it will happen.
2- IF it happens not having full access to game code and dev tools limits strongly how well modders can make it work.
3- It's bound to be a sub-optimal, unpolished experience prone to bugs and UI limitations compared to something that a developer addresses dirctectly.

Also, for the people who were worrying about "having to redo everything from scratch", Swen has been on record openly stating that they already have the UI in place to scale up to six men, they just weren't confident on the idea to make it the default mode (never mentioned before because it's a video interview he made during a streaming that I never watched until few hours ago), so there's that too.
Let's hope this amount of feedback in favor of six will serve to give their "confidence" about this a boost.

And if anything, let 4-men party as the default for console players. AS people who never played a CRPG with a good control scheme, they may even be able to appreciate it the most.
Posted By: Tomoya Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 10:04 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
"Don't worry, mods will fix it" has always been a bullshit "comfort argument", anyway.
1- There's no guarantee it will happen.
2- IF it happens not having full access to game code and dev tools limits strongly how well modders can make it work.
3- It's bound to be a sub-optimal, unpolished experience prone to bugs and UI limitations compared to something that a developer addresses dirctectly.

Also, for the people who were worrying about "having to redo everything from scratch", Swen has been on record openly stating that they already have the UI in place to scale up to six men, they just weren't confident on the idea to make it the default mode (never mentioned before because it's a video interview he made during a streaming that I never watched until few hours ago), so there's that too.
Let's hope this amount of feedback in favor of six will serve to give their "confidence" about this a boost.

And if anything, let 4-men party as the default for console players. AS people who never played a CRPG with a good control scheme, they may even be able to appreciate it the most.


You can already achieve a party of 5 possibly 6 in the tutorial.

If you play 3+ multiplayer and recruit the brain and Lae'zel.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 10:08 PM
Originally Posted by Tomoya

If you play 3+ multiplayer and recruit the brain and Lae'zel.

Yeah, I've read something of that sort by Shabby.

I'd be interested to see how the CURRENT default UI behave in that case.
Do you have any screens?
Posted By: Tomoya Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 10:10 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Tomoya

If you play 3+ multiplayer and recruit the brain and Lae'zel.

Yeah, I've read something of that sort by Shabby.

I'd be interested to see how the CURRENT default UI behave in that case.
Do you have any screens?


No but we finished the tutorial with no issue. My party was 3 PC's and Lae'zel and Us. I imagine it would work with 4 PC's the same.
Posted By: mysta6767 Re: Party Size Discussion - 15/10/20 11:13 PM
+1

I would really like to see 6 member parties as well. Loved the BG games which also had 6 party members. Even if 4 are custom created, and 2 slots for the in-game companions One thing I figure is that if it is bumped to 6 member parties, as I hope, the encounters will have to be modified to balance the combats, but it would be great thing. Wasteland 3 executed this wonderfully, basically going through the first section of the game with 2 team members then after the first area allow the creation of a couple more.
Posted By: Lenggao Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 04:00 AM
Honestly something Larian should consider is that for Do2 I loved it and supported them without hesitation.

But for this game.
The lack of 6 party members is the deal breaker for me, I probably won't buy the game tbh.

Also to the 4 player people and complainers, you played a 6 man party you guys said earlier and there was no issue, no long battles, it stills requires strategies, it's just as fun if not more. So I don't see any valid arguments besides the whole 4 player has been the norm so breaking thay 4 player norm code for video game is taboo. It's kind of ridiculous how that logic is holding back the 6 men option so much.

If you're an adamant hardcore 4 member party lover. Just play with 4.
People play solo too. No one complains besides those who only think and care about themselves. It's like saying since you're playing your game a certain way. We all have to do it too, because you're special, it's a ridiculous notion.

A lot of valid points has been made for 6 men. While 4 men arguments have all been quite childish and selfish imo.
If not lacking in information.
You guys bring up points that has been rebutted by others and Sven himself sometimes mate.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 06:58 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Tomoya

If you play 3+ multiplayer and recruit the brain and Lae'zel.

Yeah, I've read something of that sort by Shabby.

I'd be interested to see how the CURRENT default UI behave in that case.
Do you have any screens?

there
[Linked Image]
Posted By: OneManArmy Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 07:01 AM
In the end, what do we have?
Better if we are given the opportunity to take 6 characters in the party, it will be good; but if we decide to take 4 (with a maximum of 6), then we should not be infringed and inconvenience in any way
In Dragon Age has 4 characters at the same time
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 07:08 AM
Originally Posted by OneManArmy

In Dragon Age has 4 characters at the same time

so?

DAO has only 3 classes
Posted By: Black_Elk Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 08:06 AM
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Tomoya

If you play 3+ multiplayer and recruit the brain and Lae'zel.

Yeah, I've read something of that sort by Shabby.

I'd be interested to see how the CURRENT default UI behave in that case.
Do you have any screens?

there
[Linked Image]





OK so take that exact screen shot...

Now move the 6 party Character Portraits to the right side of the screen, with a vertical orientation.

Take the game management tabs (the ones currently under the minimap where they are almost too tiny to read), enlarge these and put them on the left side of the screen, again with a vertical orientation.

Now your UI looks roughly like the UI from the first 2 Baldur's Gate games, and players who are familiar with those games will instantly feel more at home.

This opens up the entire length of the screen at the bottom. This could be used to basically double size of the actions bar, the hotbar, and the opportunity bar. You'd also have room then for a dedicated Spell Casting Bar. Right now the Action bar, and hotbar are only 2 rows deep. They could easily be 3 rows deep.

The chat bar, seems to be a low priority in a game where everything is basically voice acted, but in the original games it was at the center of the screen, which gave a kind of primacy to text information being as central to the game as the combat buttons.

This game's UI just isn't taking advantage of the fact that all our monitors are now 16:9. There is plenty of real estate on the screen now for a BG UI organization to still leave a huge field of view, while preserving cohesion with the predecessors. In case anyone forgot, screen used to look like this in 1998...

[Linked Image]

Why do we need to ditch that general organization for the UI so completely?

You could preserve all the same basic functionality we have right now, just try to present it in a way that looks a little bit more like what remember from BG. More fidelity to the other Baldur's Gate games for the UI organization would really have an impact I think, and help to differentiate BG3 from your other DOS titles.


Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 08:22 AM
That topic not about UI but original BG Ui is bad and outdated, I do not miss it at all.

Originally Posted by Black_Elk
and players who are familiar with those games will instantly feel more at home.

they feel more home when they will receive 2d game on infinity engine with the RTwP combat, based on 2e so on...there is no reason to try to please them, they will still be unhappy

Posted By: Demoulius Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 09:29 AM
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk
Good evening to all the staff currently working hard at Larian Studios.

I would like to take a few minutes of your time to talk about the current party size in game, my problems with it and also a possible solution for the future.

Note: this section got away from me and was far longer than expected. It is no essential and only helps to know my gaming history and mindset but can otherwise be skipped if you so choose.
But first I would like to give you a quick insight into my history and mindset in the hopes that it will give you a clearer idea of how I am approaching BG3.
I am 34 (born July of 1986) and I had lots of fun playing the original Baldur's Gate and to lesser extent Icewind Dale games as a child, I later played and absolutely adored Dragon Age: Origins, although coming to it with the mindset of it been the spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate I wish to this day that it had a six man party, to me that is it's only real flaw.
When I first heard that BG3 was going to be a reality I was fairly excited, and then upon hearing that it was going to be made by Larian I was apprehensive and then like many others when the first gameplay was shown I didn't like what I saw thinking it looked to much like Divinity: Original Sin, and was pretty much ready to write the game off as not for me as it was too different from what I was familiar with from the original BG games.
My experience with the D:OS games has been one of mostly confusion and I will be the first to admit that I have not given them a proper chance despite having pretty much every Divinity game in my Steam library. I put my bad experience down to not understanding the mechanics and systems of the games and never properly learning them. However since the announcement of BG3 I have gotten into the Fire Emblem games so now I'm more amenable to the idea of BG3 being a turn based game and the more I think about it lately the more I think it might actually be a good thing (in BG & BG2I remember leaving my mages in the back not contributing in most fights to conserve their spell slots, something that doesn't seem to be an issue in your game). And keeping up with the progression and development and have been slowly coming around to your vision of the game, I have bought the game and created a character but that is as far as I have gotten so far so I can come and write this. Character creation was much more straight forward and easier dew to me been familiar with the systems and mechanics of previous D&D titles and I'm looking forward to getting to grips with the game going forward.
I hope that this has helped some of you understand me a little better.


Now for the reason for this post: I would like to advocate for an option to have a six man party.
When forming a party of adventurers in games like this I like a well rounded and balanced party as I would imagine a great many players do as well. You need someone to tank and keep the enemies in place, you need a rouge or thief for picking locks and traps, and for obvious reasons a healer, leaving one slot available which I will most often fill with a spell caster and as such my party composition tends to look very much the same for every playthrough. Increasing the party limit to six not only brings it in line with the original games it also allows the player much more freedom, flexibility and creativity when creating a balanced party. It is my firm belief that a six man party is far superior over a four man party and gives much greater player agency.
And what may at first seem like a contradiction to you I am nod advocating for it to be the default way to play, I understand that you have a vision for the game and I will not argue that you are wrong in it because that is not something I believe in. A four man party or a six man party as a matter of preference and therefore is always the right way to go from each individuals perspective. I know there must be a great many people like me who much prefer a six man party and I would like to offer a suggestion on how you could possibly make both groups of players happy.
For early access and your balancing process keep working on it from the four man party perspective, make the game you have envisioned and focus all of your time up to full release on making it as good as you can, use the early access period to gather the data you need to make the game the way you envision it, make four man the default way to play.
and then when you are ready for full release have an option that can be turned on at the start of a campaign that allows for a six man party, don't spend your time around balancing this option, and when selecting this you can even have a warning that say's the game is not balanced around this size of party so it will probably be easier than intended and as such not compatible with achievements, all I'd like to request for this mode is that dialog sequences and cutscenes account for the increased party size. While mods will probably bring this option to us in the future it would be nice to have an officially supported option to do this implemented by the development staff so we would not have to worry about it not working properly or not playing well with cutscenes and dialog sequences, what I'm advocating for is you to give players the option of party size even if it's not properly balanced to allow for more choice and creativity when choosing who to bring along and so we can have a closer experience to the original games.

I would like to thank anyone who has taken the time to read my long somewhat rambling post and I would encourage anyone who has thoughts on my ideas and suggestions to add to a discussion of why you agree or disagree with me, I will be posting this on the Larian forums, Steam forums and GOG forums to try and get as much impute from as many players as possible to give Larian as much information on this subject as we can, then maybe if enough people want something like this or something similar Larian might consider its implantation when they have finished balancing the game for the full release. Your time is valuable and I thank you all for sharing a little of it with me today.

Ive seen this thread for a while now and see it reached 16 pages 0o Figured id add my opinion on this as well.

I agree with the OP. Moslty not bothered by the 4 man party limit BUT adding it as an option would imo be a great move. People can still take 6 man parties if they want. More options for the player is never a bad thing.

Likewise I think its abit silly that people 'tag along' but can end up only sitting in the camp all game. Would make more sense if they did exactly what they said 'tag along'.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 09:44 AM
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Tuco


I'd be interested to see how the CURRENT default UI behave in that case.
Do you have any screens?

there
[Linked Image]


I meant more the internal panels (inventory, equipment and so on) rather than the basic UI, but still, thanks for the screen.
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 05:33 PM
Tweaking the UI to accommodate for 6 characters is proably the least of the problems.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 05:38 PM
Originally Posted by Peranor
Tweaking the UI to accommodate for 6 characters is proably the least of the problems.

Let's face it, there aren't really that many "problems" to begin with, in any scenario where Larian would actually want to give it a try.
Posted By: Andric Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 05:44 PM
would very much like to have a party of 5 or 6. 4 is to anemic. Interactions between companions also should be less extreme particulalry at the start of the game when everyone obviously needs to work together.
Posted By: Black_Elk Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 09:40 PM
Originally Posted by arion
That topic not about UI but original BG Ui is bad and outdated, I do not miss it at all.

Originally Posted by Black_Elk
and players who are familiar with those games will instantly feel more at home.

they feel more home when they will receive 2d game on infinity engine with the RTwP combat, based on 2e so on...there is no reason to try to please them, they will still be unhappy



Fair enough, though I find that attitude kinda demoralizing lol. It presents returning fans as hopeless curmudgeons who could never be satisfied so why bother, when clearly the functionality already exists and it probably isn't all that hard to implement a party of 6 into the design. I know it's likely meant hyperbolically but still, sort of a burn to lock the 6'ers out of the clubhouse hehe. I get it, but this isn't like an MMO where you need the whole player base to be on the same page for everything in order for it to work. This one has always been SP/Co-Op by design, so if we can make more people happy by providing more options that cater to their wishes what's the real harm? Like why leave that loot on the table when we're still in EA?

There are certain touchstones like the 6-man party that could be used to shore up support and help the ease of use for your returning players, especially when the designers choose to depart from the older games more dramatically in other areas. I only mentioned UI organization because, like party size, it seemed like a similarly low hanging fruit. Why not allow for UI elements to be moved around, like many games do, so that players can change it to suit their tastes? Then we could have a "Modern" UI by default, or a "Classic" alternative that could be quickly toggled from a settings tab. Same deal with party size 1-6, why not let the player make that determination, with difficulty settings to match? I feel like its presented as a zero sum thing when it really needn't be.

I keep trying to imagine if it had gone the other direction, and they went with a party of 8 instead of 4 if I'd still be in here arguing for 6? I suspect not, since in my view a larger party provides way more interest across pretty much every dimension of gameplay (and combat not least) for a game with this playstyle where one player is meant to control the entire party (or half the party I guess in the case of Co-Op).

6 is just better in my view, but clearly I'm a partisan. I'd prefer my side to win the debate hehe

Just for a counter point I feel like maybe I'd get more traction arguing why they should cap the party at 3 rather than 4 members. Just to show the opposing logic in starker relief. I'm sure there are plenty of reasons that might make sense to do this from the average PnP/5e session perspective. The party of 3 has always been more common in PnP than 4, and certainly more common than 6.

But that doesn't really apply to Baldur's Gate, cause BG wasn't like an average session. BG was like one of those epic campaigns, the truly legendary ones, that are hella hard to organize and maintain, just because of how challenging it is to get 6 people and a DM all together in one place and keep it going for months and months on end. On the computer everyone got a chance to experience something sort of like that, with the broad archs and long sweeps, like one imagines went down in basements in the late 70s, when Satan still ruled! lol

It just always stings a bit worse when it feels like something is being taken away. We fixate on it more, and maybe more than we should relative to like when we get a bonus. But that's the way my brain works. Wanting something 'back' is just a different feeling, and I think it would register as a fairly massive win for my contingent of the playerbase if EA feedback resulted in a return to 6. Peeps would say 'hey, looks like they really are taking our feedback to heart!'

But I'll tap out now. I think I've posted more than a few times in this here thread. Batons need passing and I'm zorsted from sleep deprivation playing this game haha.

Best,
Elk

Posted By: Traycor Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 09:57 PM
I really hope the party size increases to 6. It's a Baldur's Gate game after all, and 4 is just a very tiny party. Especially since I like to experience all the companion's stories.

And now I'm seeing some insanity about locking the party after the first act? That's so crazy it almost sounds made-up. If they really are locking the party, then only a party of 4 is very sad, and makes playing an Origin almost mandatory to get a full story experience out of the game since custom PCs have no content.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 10:24 PM
Originally Posted by Traycor
and makes playing an Origin almost mandatory to get a full story experience out of the game since custom PCs have no content.

People keep saying this but I honestly don't care that much about playing these origin stories.
HAving these characters in party and witnessing their questline? Great. Playing in their role? I don't care. I'd gladly give up on having all these "Origins" playable if it just meant having A LOT more companions.
Posted By: Traycor Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 10:33 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Traycor
and makes playing an Origin almost mandatory to get a full story experience out of the game since custom PCs have no content.

People keep saying this but I honestly don't care that much about playing these origin stories.
HAving these characters in party and witnessing their questline? Great. Playing in their role? I don't care. I'd gladly give up on having all these "Origins" playable if it just meant having A LOT more companions.

A party size of 4 means only 3 characters that have stories unless you play an Origin, then you get 4 characters with a story. That's 25% more story content on a playthrough.

The whole line about custom PCs making their own story is just PR speak, because you also do that same thing if you play an Origin. I'll likely play a custom PC 100% of the time, so being restricted to only 3 companions is very punishing for a story based game.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 16/10/20 10:36 PM
Originally Posted by Traycor

The whole line about custom PCs making their own story is just PR speak
I know exactly what to expect.
I don't give a shit. i played DOS 2 both with custom characters and premade origins.
I never found it a big deal. A couple of sidequests are the main difference between the two, and you could get plenty of "customized reactions" based on your background tags etc.

People who claim the experience was massively different sound delusional to me.
Posted By: st33d Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 12:44 AM
Originally Posted by Traycor
restricted to only 3 companions is very punishing for a story based game.


Someone needs to play Disco Elysium. The story was great and you only had 2 characters to play with. Trying to argue the benefits of a harem over monogamy is just silly. Just because a story isn't a six way gangbang doesn't mean it's less of a story.

Can we also drop the "just play with less characters" argument while we're at it? You're literally saying, "that's just your opinion man". You've given up the argument at that point - if you're going you're own way then you're throwing yourself off of the ship. You're not steering it.

-

I mean, with the fact that DOS had slower gameplay because you had a fatter "action economy wallet", I get what 6-party stans are on about. The pace of play with 4 characters is weirdly quick. D&D5 is designed to get turns done quickly.

That's why bonus actions have been abused by the designers - to give characters something to do on their turn.
Posted By: CMF Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 01:00 AM
A lot of the replies here are based on shorter/longer combat, convivence to the player, or being more aligned or not with table top gaming.

I am under the impression that the developers created a 4 man limitation to force choice on the players and make us have to decide what we are willing to lose.

Otherwise if the party size expands, we have TOO many tools available to us. If I have a character to excel at every skill available, I can just swap in and out to ensure highest chance of success at every social or combat encounter.

Choices like this are to encourage weakness and force limitations on players so that a challenge is presented and deliberate choices are made. It feels bad to have to give things up, but it is also good game design.

If a DM/GM gives everything to the players, there is no challenge and no sense of struggle to overcome which in turn becomes a sense of accomplishment.

Basically, if you let players be gods and perfect, the game is boring after a while. Limits create opportunity for variations and new experiences as you try new things for future playthroughs. Otherwise, why provide the illusion of choice if you let the players get everything, just get rid of dialog options and skill checks and make the game linear (I am sure you all don't want that).
Posted By: Traycor Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 02:12 AM
Originally Posted by CMF
A lot of the replies here are based on shorter/longer combat, convivence to the player, or being more aligned or not with table top gaming.

I am under the impression that the developers created a 4 man limitation to force choice on the players and make us have to decide what we are willing to lose.

Otherwise if the party size expands, we have TOO many tools available to us. If I have a character to excel at every skill available, I can just swap in and out to ensure highest chance of success at every social or combat encounter.

Choices like this are to encourage weakness and force limitations on players so that a challenge is presented and deliberate choices are made. It feels bad to have to give things up, but it is also good game design.

If a DM/GM gives everything to the players, there is no challenge and no sense of struggle to overcome which in turn becomes a sense of accomplishment.

Basically, if you let players be gods and perfect, the game is boring after a while. Limits create opportunity for variations and new experiences as you try new things for future playthroughs. Otherwise, why provide the illusion of choice if you let the players get everything, just get rid of dialog options and skill checks and make the game linear (I am sure you all don't want that).

I think party size was determined based off the old initiative system. If your whole team went at once and you had 6 players, you could destroy the opposition before they ever attacked. Now that each combatant rolls initiative, a part size of 6 should be fine.
Your other points are refuted by BG1 & 2. Those were great games.
Posted By: CMF Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 03:14 AM
Originally Posted by Traycor
Originally Posted by CMF
A lot of the replies here are based on shorter/longer combat, convivence to the player, or being more aligned or not with table top gaming.

I am under the impression that the developers created a 4 man limitation to force choice on the players and make us have to decide what we are willing to lose.

Otherwise if the party size expands, we have TOO many tools available to us. If I have a character to excel at every skill available, I can just swap in and out to ensure highest chance of success at every social or combat encounter.

Choices like this are to encourage weakness and force limitations on players so that a challenge is presented and deliberate choices are made. It feels bad to have to give things up, but it is also good game design.

If a DM/GM gives everything to the players, there is no challenge and no sense of struggle to overcome which in turn becomes a sense of accomplishment.

Basically, if you let players be gods and perfect, the game is boring after a while. Limits create opportunity for variations and new experiences as you try new things for future playthroughs. Otherwise, why provide the illusion of choice if you let the players get everything, just get rid of dialog options and skill checks and make the game linear (I am sure you all don't want that).

I think party size was determined based off the old initiative system. If your whole team went at once and you had 6 players, you could destroy the opposition before they ever attacked. Now that each combatant rolls initiative, a part size of 6 should be fine.
Your other points are refuted by BG1 & 2. Those were great games.



I made my comments from assessing the previous title, divinity original 2. Same party intro, make friends and then split the party with your select few occurred there.

Additionally I don't believe the existence of previous games "refute" the points. It is a game development decision. Give players everything, or give players nothing.

Both systems have been used in many games. I know JRPG games are very fond of grinding it out and getting every level, every class, every character, every item. Those games are largely popular in both western and eastern gaming communities.

I didn't sufficiently advocate for the limited acquisition model, by putting too much opinion on it and I too put that above one or the other. What I tried to do was bring insight on to "why" a decision was possibly made to limit size, beyond just initiative system or other limitations.

It is fine to disagree that a small party or a large party is better. It becomes a point of intent. Do they want to limit resources, or do they want to expand them?
To us the players, are we fine with limited resources or do we think expansion of resources is better? Balancing and addressing those concerns is good stewardship of a developer.
Posted By: Lenggao Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 03:29 AM
You do know that it makes no sense that it's faster pace having less party members right?
The game concept is totally different from DoS.
Having more actually lets you end battle sooner because of the limitations of DnD combat. Most can do one or two actions a turn, with more party members, it means you get to attack more.

If this was DoS, for sure, we'll watch this guy buff his character 20 times in one turn than finally proceed to wipe the map by himself, but so far the new battles is nothing like that.

Storywise the number of party members don't matter, it's all on the writer, we can have one member and it'll be a good story if the designer behind it does a good job. But comparing the two game makes no sense as well, one game does revolve around the idea of playing a tabletop game with others in a group, some folks have no friends we get it, so they like less of a crowd and now the other game... the other doesn't really relate at all to the game design, it's two different world. We only compare DoS to this because of the fact that it's the same company.

People do make a lot of valid points for 6 men, and tbh, if you want 5, 4 or 1, just do you, letting people choose and have more options is never a bad thing. I don't see why people whine about how other people plays,n when most likely, we'll never play together, we're more bound to play with our friends and family.
Posted By: Lenggao Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 03:39 AM
It goes both ways, having more allows more strategic thinking as well, you're not limited to having a core set of the same group that most other have, just hop onto YouTube, most people have the same exact setup more or less, there's more possibilities in a fight with more characters tbh. And a lot of what you said has been refuted by others already too. I'm not going to spend time going into it, but it goes back to the fact that having 6 members isn't an issue and people have the freedom to choose what they want. Just find those responses and rebutt them if you're very adamant about how you want us to play.

What you really are saying is that, you like it a certain way, and you want us to play that way only. Which is ironically kinda selfish. Let people play how they want. If you like less, go for less.

There's ways to make players struggle besides what you've mentioned too. Ways to make the game funner, but that's more personal preference.

Larian is cool enough to give options, there's those who plays solo too, and we don't see them complaining, nor are we hearing them force us to play with only a single character.

People seem to keep thinking this game is DoS.

Edit: JRPG is JRPG, totally different bro.
Some is good, some isn't.
Posted By: JDCrenton Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 05:10 AM
One game revolves around the idea of blowing up the whole planet with barrels and the other.....well...
Posted By: Victordeus Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 05:57 AM
There's a logical issue with the comparison to D:OS2 is though, because the characters in that game are somewhat specialized, but you can still have swiss army knife characters that are good at everything. Even if you specialize characters you have a crap load of scrolls and items that make it possible to go without spreading your points fairly easily. In D&D however those options are not as readily available, and nor should they be(even if it is a video game as the argument seems to go). In D&D people are forced into certain rolls that don't really change throughout play(Though there is some evolution), and I think the only thing that limiting the party size to four does is make the developers feel like they need to add more food and scrolls and potions to the game to make up for it. I think with a rebalance of resting and encounters (which apparently are done by an AI now) the game would be vastly improved with one or two more companions available. Then the need for items to keep yourself alive and barrels to give you the advantage(or outright cheese the system) would be somewhat mitigated.
Posted By: Black_Elk Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 06:20 AM
Baldur's gate is the most replayed D&D CRPG of all time

It had 25 recruitable companions and a full party of 6 members.

In terms of the possible party combinations, the "25 recruitable companions" is the more important part of the equation than the 6 member party cap, but they are both relevant.

As pointed out earlier in this thread there are many more combinations available with the cap at 6 than there are with the cap at just 4, provided we have a decent number of total companions available. The number of combinations practically doubles when going from 4 to 6 if the total number of companions is raised to say 10 rather than just the 5 currently available. This increases even more dramatically again if we go from a possible 10 companions to say 15 or 20 companions in the roster.

Right now initial impressions are being based on the 5 recruit-able companions currently available in EA, and a full party of 4 members. But there's no way it could end up just being 5 companions or just one or two beyond that thrown in later as some have suggested. That would be a crazy hard fail from the team holding the crown right now. They'd need like a dozen companions just for it to even hold a torch to the epic glory of BG1. So I fully expect them to double or triple the number of companions by the time this thing goes live just to do it justice by the BG standard. I mean they got what, a dozen writers on it? Seems about right.

It makes sense for Larian to tease them in smaller numbers like this too, so that their EA can focus on the party interactions/compositions they feel need the most feedback, and probably more importantly to give us a reason to keep tuning in when they drop their larger patches to expand the content. But there are bound to be a lot more companions, and if that's the case, a full party of 6 is going to give a huge amount of variety in party composition over just 4... even accounting for a few companion pairings that might not be compatible long term without things coming to blows inside the camp.

There are plenty of amazing ways to make an awesome 4 person game by design, or to make a game with only 2 characters when the goal is a Kurvitz style masterpiece. But we're not taking about just any game. This is the heavy weight title we're talking about! This is Baldur's Gate III

It really should be trying to distill the essence of what made the other two preceding titles so rad, and part of that was the variety of possible party compositions. I just can't see the logic that says giving us fewer characters in our group somehow gives us more choices, or better or more interesting choices. it just doesn't pencil for me. Closes off more doors than it opens and diminishes the replay in the long run. Creating a party building vibe that's concordant with the previous titles in the franchise, and building it out with those kinds of limits in mind is what I'd dig.

I really think the party of 4 is going to become more problematic later on, when the encounters scale to epic territory. This is why a lot of us are hearing the internal alarm bells sounding, and trying to argue for a fix now, while there is time to fix it. I mean we definitely expect a game with a Dragon combat or two eventually right? That's going to be a lot harder to pull off in style with just 4, while still maintaining a classically epic sensibility. I mean unless the plan is just to toss us a bunch of non controllable friendlies? This seems to be the go-to approach in many of these EA battles right now, and maybe it works alright when there are narrative reasons (like "the Blade of Frontiers!" sounding his horn, or NPCs that are part of the story) but as a player I feel less invested in the encounter when this is overused. I'd rather have a party of 6 that I can fully control and really work to defeat the opposing crew, than half a dozen random friendlies appearing in every other encounter, just to serve as fodder so that the combats can be balanced by teams/sides.

Just like a good DM, a good difficulty setting in the options should allow everything in these encounters to scale, whether the player elects to cruise with 6 people or just 4.

But still, if you really want it to hit the nostalgia button and go for broke, I'm chanting 6 6 6! Even though I know I said I'd tap out, the gravitational pull of this thread just seems inexorable for me lol






Posted By: MarcHicks Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 06:29 AM
I definitely agree that a 6 person party makes much more sense. Though, if they do take this route, then I hope they consider adding a few more potential party members to choose from in Acts 1 & early Act 2. After all, I do still like being faced with difficult choices.
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 03:03 PM
Originally Posted by MarcHicks
I definitely agree that a 6 person party makes much more sense. Though, if they do take this route, then I hope they consider adding a few more potential party members to choose from in Acts 1 & early Act 2. After all, I do still like being faced with difficult choices.



I've heard that they're planning on having a total of 12 or 13 companions or so. Not sure about the exact number, but htey will most definitely add more.
Posted By: brunotavm Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 03:06 PM
5 players seems okay, 6 could be a little OP and a lot of different inventories to manage
Posted By: Estel77 Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 03:31 PM
[
Originally Posted by vberge
I really really want this suggestion to go through. I want a party of 1 Tank (fighter or paladin), 1 cleric, 1 charisma caster(bard, sorc or warlock), 1 int caster, 1 rogue and 1 fun character (druid, barb, ranger).

4 just has too many limitation and I feel like I am forced into tank, healer caster and a rogue that kind of has to be arcane trickster at that point.This leaves no room for fun party compositions.

Please please please reconsider the 4 man limit.


+1
fully agree
Posted By: Phomane Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 03:48 PM
+1

6 in party = more fun creation group, alot subclass exist, very unfun to be limited with only 4. And please 3 story characters and 3 full created character. Give me back the freedom !
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 17/10/20 07:41 PM
Originally Posted by MasterRoo09
For everyone who thinks having the option of 2 more party members is bogus or "makes the game or combat too long" or makes "it too easy" or "you can multiclass to fix most problems", hear me out a bit.
Here's my link to my thoughts on why I think it would be a lot of fun for the option of 6 party members.
http://forums.larian.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=685704#Post685704

I would like to add a few things to back that up.

1. 5e Core Rules

"The preceding guidelines assume that you have a party consisting of three to five adventureres... If the party contains six or more characters, use the next lowest multiplier on the table." - Page 83 D&D Dungeons Master's Guide

5e considers 4-5 to be standard while 6 or more being optional, totally up to the players and DM for party size. So Larian at the very least can give us max 5 party members if they're being picky with the rules. The reason why many players want the option (keyword option), is because it was an option in the original BG 1 and 2. This is a Baldur's Gate game, doesn't matter who's developing it. I wouldn't mind more elements from the original BG that would further improve BG3. (Party management and maneuvering being a few to list) I also would like to mention that many official WofC D&D adventure modules of both current and past editions are geared for 4-5 and/or 4-6 players. If you want "lore" to further prove my point, take a look at Drizzt companions. He has 5 total in his party. So what if players wanted to have fun and roleplay as Drizzt in BG3 and (hopefully have an option later to add fully other customize companions) his companions from the books?

2. Time management.

The fact that I have to sit and watch my clock during enemy turns against my party of 4 is bogus. For example: Goblin camp. That was about 25 enemies which would be considered a platoon (18-50 soldiers) against my 4 companions which is not even considered a squad (6*-10 soldiers), So already players are watching their clocks for the enemy to take their sweet time in current Early Access. If I had those extra 2 members, I would've had more chances taking out Goblins quickly.

3. Difficulty Levels

If players want a challenge, you have every right to do that and the option of 6 companions will not sour that experience. I honestly think the game should reward players who decide to take these challenges for a smaller party, just like in the original BG. The same amount of experience will be earned for encounters but if your party is smaller, each companion gets a bigger piece of the pie. So far it seems that the game rewards the same amount of exp. no matter how big or small the party size.

4. The game world is not designed for a bigger party

I'd beg to differ. Most battles have a large number of opponents and there is plenty of space for 2 more party members. If a warlock can have their minion and a ranger can have their pet in the same party of 4, It can fit more than four or even 6 playable characters in practically every area.
For many of the old-school BG players. Remember Firewine Ruins and how claustrophobic it was? You almost had to move the party in a single file line in that dungeon. BG3 EA hasn't had any dungeons or areas as claustrophobic as Firewine Ruins and if they did, I'm sure it would be a challenging dungeon. Also, I hope to God Larian fixes the party movement and controls.

I don't see how an optional party of 6 would sour your experience if you really hate that idea. In fact it gives you more options and variety on how you want to approach the game. I thought that was the whole reason why we love RPG's the variety of possibilities and customizations.

Larian, if you're reading this, at least let us know why this wouldn't be possible. Many people who don't like the idea say because it's also "balancing issue" and needs a lot of resources. I'm positive that is an issue but if that is true then let's hear it from the horse's mouth and let us know why.


you have argued my points far better than i could, thank you and I could not agree more.
Originally Posted by jonn
Originally Posted by RKane
Originally Posted by Ghorunt
Originally Posted by RKane

So don't play in a 6 man party. What he's advocating for is the ability to do so. I think you're both shooting down the idea in spite of the fact that the game will be balanced around 4 people anyway so your experience wont change


If you balance the game around 4 characters but allow a party of 6, everyone will have 6 characters in their party anyway

How do you know?

Originally Posted by Ghorunt

and this would make the game too easy. If you want to go that route, it makes more sense allowing this option with a mod instead.


Why do you care if it makes the game easier for a group of 6? You're not asking for this feature so you have no business talking about balance

Also, I should point out that in divinity, the number of people who did lone wolf duo's seemed to be just as many people looking for 4. In fact, I'd be interested in the ratio between the number of 2:3:4 man games played. I would put money on the fact that full 4 man runs would have the lowest percent as it seemed impossible to find a group of 4 people to actually commit to the entire game.

Also, as I've said in a previous quote, and countless times, balance is a completely pointless criticism to an otherwise reasonable and valid suggestion / request. It's not your job to worry about such a trivial task. Anything can be balanced after the fact.

Opposing a feature request because you 'worry about the balance' is childish and annoying. It's a deadweight opinion based on an entirely selfish desire to cockblock others for no reason whatsoever.


TL;DR, I've yet to see any valid reasons to oppose this idea. If your only concern is balance, just say "I'd wouldn't mind as long as the balance is done right". Don't go round saying "I oppose this because I worry they might ruin the balance for a situation I never intend to play". It's really selfish. Stop offering dead weight opinions and use your head. There is a very simple solution to this and would be trivial to keep everyone happy.


I'm only opposed to it until the devs come out and say that it is something they will be able to manage along with all the other improvements they want to make. Until then it is a possibility, no matter how much you shout, scoff and name-call, that this could use up resources that could be better used elsewhere. For me and many others the extra party size isn't that big of a deal.


I don't see why this should be such a big problem for them to implement, they are not a small indy dev that needs kickstarter to fund there games anymore. This is a AAA game with a AAA level amount of staff behind it, I believe they have over 200 people working on this so a few set aside to create a valid way to play with a six player party should not be too big of an undertaking for them or divert many resources away for the 4 man experience.

You say that for you and many others that the extra party members is not a big deal, but what about those of us that clearly want this quite a lot, do you deny us that option because you don't want it? Also what if it was a quarter of the player base that wanted this, or half, what then would you say to the party size been an option so people can choose what they want? Because thats all we want, the option to play how we want, not to take away the options already implemented that allow you to play how you want.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 01:01 AM
Originally Posted by odesseiron81
I don't mind a 4 person party. It's not the worst thing in the world. But 5 would be far more comfortable and also make for more diverse party compositions.

I'm going to make a comparison to MMO's. Completely different genre, I know and that might not be fair. But the Problem is very similar and relates. Particularly compared to FFXIV Online. But it is a problem many "new" (post WoW) MMO's have.

That is called the Trinity. Let's say you have a raid, you have 2 tanks, 2 healers, 4 DPS. There are no utility jobs. Or if there are, they are niche and not desired to be in the party. But in most cases with MMO's nowadays, again, using FFXIV as an example, a Bard is considered a DPS. A red mages is a DPS, and so on. It's a set group of those 3 kinds of jobs. No room for a true support job. Those classes may have support abilities integrated into them, but they're still a DPS. Certain jobs are preferred over others. Because there is no room for a class that doesn't offer the maximum amount of optimal output.

Final Fantasy XI Online did it extremely well. A standard party is 6. A tank, mage, healer, 2 DPS, support job. In that game there were several support jobs. You were encouraged to experiment. Much of the content in that game required support based classes.

Granted BGIII isn't a MMO but I feel a similar can occur. Instead of a Trinity we have a Rectology? lol. Or Rectangle based system. By having only 4 members, you limit the ability to designate someone to a utility/support job. Granted we can still have a varied composition of members, but many people are presumably less likely to experiment with classes. The average player will probably go Warrior/Rogue/Damage Dealer x2. Otherwise they might think their damage output is too low. Or survivability. Adding even 1 extra slot to party members creates a possibility of so much more diversity and party experimentation. I hope 5 members at the very least get considered.

I know exactly what you are trying to say and agree completely, I may be boring and not thinking outside the box if i want a rouge to open locks and disarm traps, and a cleric for healing with a wizard for offensive spells and a paladin as my tank, hell I like having two tanks and a fighter that can all hold the line and then a ranged backline that can rain hell down from above.

Also off topic side note: I've been a White Mage main since 2.0 PS3 beta, but my favourite FF job has always been Red Mage, however I never switched over when they added it because it didn't feel like the jack of all trades master on none it was meant to be, as a healer I was hoping for something that would fill the role of a healer in a pinch when desperate. But because it had to fit the trinity everything just feels lacklustre. But I do plan on my first or second character been a Bard in BG3, if they do it right I should be able to build it fairly close to the Red Mage archetype, they may even put in an appropriate feathered hat, or at least that's my hope.
My first two full playthrough is going to be Cleric and Bard because i'm boring and sticking to what I know and like.
Originally Posted by coredumped
Hi, I am also in favour of having a maximum of 6 party members.

As many people have already argued here, using the argument that it slows down the game is silly. What slows down the game is the fact that they turned this into a turn based game (I think it's a horrible approach, but not gonna get into that here). The combat is already incredibly slow and dull with a 4 man party. And guess what... It's even slower and duller the more you reduce the party size because you have to wait longer and longer for the enemies to finish whatever they're doing before you can play again. So, if the issue at hand was merely the fact that it would "slow down the game", it would in fact improve it in every way as you can dispose of enemies faster, have more synergies and most important of all, you can actually play more often during combat.

Using balance as an argument is pretty uninformed (I guess it's the best way to put it without using other less cordial terms). Balance is something for the developers to worry about. We as early access players giving feedback are pretty much a sweat-shop QA team. Our job as individuals who want to better the game is give the suggestions we feel would do exactly that. We are not here to babysit them and say "oh, but the poor lonely devs already have other Jira cards open in their dashboard... let's not give them more work". That's... stupid. A 6 man party would better the game for a great variety of reasons which have already been stated here, so if you're gonna argue, use arguments that actually have an impact in the GAMEPLAY AND THE PLAYERS, not the developers. This is their job, they are paid to do it, and you pay for the end product.
Not to mention that balancing in this area of party members has been done for many years successfully. As anyone who's played the original Baldur's Gates can tell you, and they are over 20 years old.

With these issues aside, I feel the biggest problem with having a 4 man party as a maximum is that it is extremely restrictive to the player. Most people will want to have a balanced party. I don't care if you can make Gale into a swiss-army man and have him lockpick, disarm traps, charge a boss on a flaming unicorn wielding a staff and magic missiles. To me this just seems like I'm playing DOS 2 again, where every character does everything. This just removes uniqueness from your companions and the idea of roles (which I feel most people who enjoy DnD games like) kinda goes out the window. DnD games are amazing for many reasons and party management is one of them. 4 man means you're locked into a core that you can't really change without gimping yourself in effectiveness and/or fun. You'll most likely want a front liner to deal melee damage and/or tank (say a fighter), a support which can buff, heal, disable (e.g. cleric or druid), someone with utility for exploring, scouting, lockpicking, disarming traps, etc. (like a rogue) and a spell caster. Sure you have a party that can finish the game but you have no room for imagination or fun.

Also, regarding the mods argument: Sure, eventually modders can make a mod for the party to have a maximum of 6 members if Larian does nothing about this, but it is much better to have the actual people who are developing the game and have the insight and ability to fine tune it and balance it properly to do so as it would no doubt lead to a much better experience for everyone.

But people in sweatshops actually get paid for their work, It might not be a lot but they still get something, whereas we are paying Larian for the privilege of been exploited. I agree with you on pretty much everything, and while modders could do it it would never not be janky, temperamental and or work as well as what Larion could do while they are still finishing off the game, they are big enough now and well funded enough that they should have the resources to do this themselves. Regardless of who is making the game it has the name Baldur's Gate attached to it so I expect it to feel like Baldur's Gate and not another part in their own franchise that they already have, differentiating the party size and allowing us the party flexibility and compositions we are used to from previous entries would go a long way to make it feel like a Baldur's Gate game, at least to me.
Originally Posted by HustleCat
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by HustleCat

Maybe less EXP for bigger parties and more for smaller ones


That's exactly how it works in D&D and in the old BG.
I'm sure Larian know it.

More specifically, since in Larian games basically only the main character levels up and others simply keep up with him, what you are supposed to do is to adjust how much exp he gets according to how many partners he carries around.
Which is the norm. People talking about it as an obscure method that would require the longest, most elaborate inspection when it has been tried and tested over YEARS of practical use are ridiculous.


Vaguely legitimate worries, if any, would rather be that:
- you can eventually exploit this system levelling up faster and THEN grouping more companions anyway.
- at some point all characters are going to hit a level cap anyway.

To both the most appropriate response is "SO FUCKING WHAT?"
It's irrelevant. Just more fake concerns, in practical terms. These games are never "finely tuned" to make possible barely edging them. There's always a massive headroom making them completable at any skill level with a far from optimal setup.


That is true. You could level up with 2 early on and then turn act 3 into butter with your high level group of 6. I like a more challenging and less exploitable game. I think DOS2 had extra game options you could select that would change the game, but disable achievements. Maybe they could do that for 6 player party mode

That was what I said in my OP, make it a toggleable option before you start a new game that comes with a disclaimer about wonky balance and achievements will therefore be disabled.
Originally Posted by pincup
I'm content with 4 companions, someone at Reddit summed it up nicely but judging by responses, this forum is filled with die hard fans of 6 members and no matter arguments everyone against them will hit a wall laugh so why bother. 4 that's the number and I hope it stays that way



All we are asking for here is an option that a large portion of the player base wants, we don't want to take away your option to play with the settings that you find best and most fun, would you deny us even the possibility of having simply the option to play with the settings and party size we want?
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk

Larian has already confirmed that the level cap is 10

already confirmed it is not 10

when I made that the last I had heard Larian had confirmed a cap of 10 but it seems they are not sure anymore https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/20...-not-cap-player-levels-to-ten-after-all/ but until they have a definitive answer and number I think we should work under the assumption of 10 to avoid dissapointement for anyone wanting a higher level cap.
Originally Posted by Roarro
I just love these arguments-4 person party was good enough in DOS, why change? Well maybe ask Larian to make another DOS game and leave Baldurs Gate to us ?

Here here +1
Originally Posted by kanisatha
It's clear to me what's missing in these discussions is that four takes away from those who like six, but six does NOT take anything away from those who like four. They can still play their game with four (or less). As for game "balance," you just balance the game for whatever number you decide as the developer, and then have a warning with the toggle to increase party size that says: hey, doing this may make your combat unchallenging. Including choices so different players can play and enjoy their game as they want is NEVER a bad thing. Not ever.

I also think that thats what a lot of the people who like the 4 man set-up are missing, we only want the option to have 6 party members, and they never give an opinion on us simply have the option to choose how many people we can take with us.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 01:18 AM
Originally Posted by AleXty

if I remember correctly even the old bgs were a maximum of 4, but I could be wrong. Honestly with a group of 4 there is a lot more strategy and I personally like it. Six would be too much, they should increase the difficulty of the mobs and should increase the mobs to face.

The origional Baldur's Gate games both had 6 man parties as the default party size when you was done recruiting companions, as did the Icewind Dale games that where built on the same engine. If they where all based around a 4 man party then this wouldn't be such a big deal to all of us who loved the originals.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 01:34 AM
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk
Originally Posted by AleXty

if I remember correctly even the old bgs were a maximum of 4, but I could be wrong. Honestly with a group of 4 there is a lot more strategy and I personally like it. Six would be too much, they should increase the difficulty of the mobs and should increase the mobs to face.

The origional Baldur's Gate games both had 6 man parties as the default party size when you was done recruiting companions, as did the Icewind Dale games that where built on the same engine. If they where all based around a 4 man party then this wouldn't be such a big deal to all of us who loved the originals.

Same for Torment, while Temple of Elemental Evil had a default party of 5 player-generated characters but you could hire up to three additional NPCs, if charisma allowed it.
Fun fact: ToEE had for years what was broadly considered as by far the best, most faithful implementation of the D&D combat system in a computer game (its flaws were all in other areas, frankly) and allowed for a bigger party *precisely* because turn-based combat made it more manageable and rewarding than real-time.

Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 01:59 AM
Originally Posted by KingNothing69
A party of up to six is the correct decision. Less than that and the game doesn't feel like Baldur's Gate. Solo the game, take only a few companions, or have a full party. That's how the original games worked. Leave it up to the individual and stop thinking that because a party size of four is enough for you that it is OK for everyone else.

And why are we pretending like the game is balanced as is in EA? Do people really think this is how the final game will be? That Larian won't change anything? That there won't be any difficulty sliders? That we can't opt into ways to make the game more or less challenging based on player preference? That's just crazy. It's also stupid to complain about how other people play the game not working with your play style or rudely pretending like you know the financials of these asks and that us peasants posting in the Suggestions & Feedback forum are too dumb to know what we want. Let people play the way they want. D&D is about giving people the power to create stories how they want. That's why the ruleset is so flexible and allows for homebrew (mods for tabletop).

Although if it ends up being that party is fixed after Act 1, then I'll really lose the desire to play this game. Party experimentation is KEY to Baldur's Gate. If you were stuck with the same party for the whole Bhaalspawn saga, then that would suck in a very major way and the pocket plane would be a very sad place.

I expect there will be 12 origin characters at launch, one for each class, and then i would expect a few more that are only available in acts 2 and 3, like you if you are locked in after act 1 ends I won't be impressed
Originally Posted by Peranor
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Smash Dently
Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game

lol this argue again
what game they need to rebalance?
there no balanced game, all we have is EA which not balanced at all
Originally Posted by nation
Originally Posted by Peranor
[quote=arion][quote=Smash Dently] Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game

lol this argue again
what game they need to rebalance?
there no balanced game, all we have is EA which not balanced at all



Yeah, and even if it was. I don't think it would be terrible difficult to add some kind of dynamic balacing to the game that accomodate for your chosen party size. Maybe set it as a starting option when you start a new game. Choose between solo or 2-6 party members. And once the game is started the balance is set and you're locked to the maximum party size of your choise.

+1 i think this would be a really good idea too - something like a 'Behind the DM Screen' pre campaign/character creation screen where you would be able to designate a variety of options that would carry over into the full campaign, many of which could potentially speak to a variety of the discussions and alleviate some concerns on these forums and could be really helpful when setting up a mp campaign specifically.

things that you could possibly toggle that would impact the campaign's 'difficulty/balance', but im sure others here could add to this list
-stat allocation - roll, buy, array
-feat at first level (id argue this could really open up gameplay but could warrant an overall campaign challenge increase)
-classes/races/feats/spell filter etc (more mp oriented tho)
-party size 1-6, but could see why 1,2,4,6 may be more feasible to include and 'balance' at this point (id argue that players should always be able to have a max of 6 open party slots bc enables more player choice and allow players to decide themselves to go 4 or 6, etc.)
-use healing potion as a bonus action
-scale of surface effects
-show/hide dice rolls - im not sure its a good thing to know a dc of a skill check or see that you failed that perception roll, but that being said id rather the dc be set and apply my bonus to the die roll instead of reducing the dc as i think it currently works (id also think this systems presentation may need some tweaking - not a fan of jumping away from the dialogue to just fail a die roll)
-limit info that can be gained from 'examining' npcs and enemies, such as hp or ac
-party interaction during dialogue and trading/bartering (maybe more mp tho)
-more specific class tweaks as the 'dm' allows (ie swapping warlock spells, respecs, multi-class requirements)

i feel the above list (outside maybe the scale of the surface effects) are all common dnd 'house rules' topics you discuss around the table that could also really work to refine an bg3 campaign to fit each persons playstyle. obviously this is all just thoughts/theorycrafting suggestions but i think in particular the discussion regarding having 4v6 party slots and possible required balancing could find solutions for both perspectives with a toggable pre-campaign dynamic balance as mentioned above by peranor

also, maybe tangentially related, but i think balance should be focused around encounters not party size or level - i want to adapt to the challenges and world of bg3 not the opposite way around

I like his idea, and yours as well, more options is always a good thing.
Originally Posted by Black_Elk
They can't have failed to notice by now that it will be a real sticking point for a lot people. This is already one of the longest threads in this feedback section, and its been brought up in many others.

I'm not terribly inspired by the idea that if the devs don't do it, then motivated modders will be able to solve everything. This doesn't strike me as a game that will be particularly easy to mod. NWN was basically a modders dream, but lack of party control, with henchmen instead of a full party kinda sank it, despite all the other innovative things that were done. It was a perennial disappointment there even with like 3 expansions and a sequel, that we never got a party control system there. And that one was by the same developer. Larian is so much closer, much much closer to the BG vibe than NWN ever was, but they are kinda shooting themselves in the foot by hamstringing us with a party limited to 4.

4 makes it feel like Valkyrie needs food!

6 is what we want lol






+1
Posted By: vyvexthorne Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 02:26 AM
The only reason I'd want 6 companions is if I also get to create my own party. Right now I'm fine with four because I'm not keen on dealing with pre-made companions. While I like games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect, I don't necessarily enjoy all the companion interactions. Overly written companions control the narrative too much.. If I get to create my own party like in IWD then that's more fun for me because it's my own soap opera that I'm creating. I get to create the characters personalities and stories as I play the game. If it's someone elses characters then my brain goes all grumbly whenever they do something out of character for the character I'm trying to play them as.
Posted By: nation Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 03:50 AM
Originally Posted by vyvexthorne
The only reason I'd want 6 companions is if I also get to create my own party. Right now I'm fine with four because I'm not keen on dealing with pre-made companions. While I like games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect, I don't necessarily enjoy all the companion interactions. Overly written companions control the narrative too much.. If I get to create my own party like in IWD then that's more fun for me because it's my own soap opera that I'm creating. I get to create the characters personalities and stories as I play the game. If it's someone elses characters then my brain goes all grumbly whenever they do something out of character for the character I'm trying to play them as.
like IWD, you could also create your own custom party in the original bg games too by essentially hosting your own mp campaign and filling in the party slots with self-made characters. i actually really enjoyed this being a part of those games too (including the black pits side-stories) as you mentioned it allowed the player to create their own party of custom made characters and then be able to act out the adventure and party dynamics as they went through the story, so i really hope larian does include this as an option too as part of the full game on launch - the og bg games were more restrictive on character creation than 5e, so it was really fun theory crafting all good/neutral/evil parties or just cool character concepts that i hadnt yet experienced in game (which you could also plan a party around when you had another 5 custom pc slots so even if characters werent 'optimal' you could still mold a party to fit your playstyle or pick up an appropriate npc companion among the dozen plus that both the originals had).

I also agree with what you were saying about playing with companions whom control the narrative too much or 'steal the spotlight' from my own pc - which i think the origin companion characters do to a certain extent. at this stage in the games development i dont think reducing the origin characters role is realistic or a good use of resources, however i do wish they would add some more game mechanics that made me feel like my own pc was more critical to the overall games plot, as currently it feels like if my pc never survived the ship crash they wouldnt even get a footnote in the history books, bc all the origin characters theoretically would just carry on with the story as they still would need to address the tadpole situation whether our pc was present or not, which to me just doesnt feel like bg - just for an example, in the originals if your main pc died you had to reload, no tpk required. im not saying that larian should implement this function, and 5e death mechanics present different tools for a dnd game today - im just highlighting that as an example of how the game's plot/narrative/story all revolved around your pc and your pc's interactions (that you decided and selected) with the environment/companions
Posted By: Kou The Mad Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 05:16 AM
Gonna have to side with the increase to 6 crowd, 4 kinda limits combinations.
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 07:12 PM
Originally Posted by vberge
I really really want this suggestion to go through. I want a party of 1 Tank (fighter or paladin), 1 cleric, 1 charisma caster(bard, sorc or warlock), 1 int caster, 1 rogue and 1 fun character (druid, barb, ranger).

4 just has too many limitation and I feel like I am forced into tank, healer caster and a rogue that kind of has to be arcane trickster at that point.This leaves no room for fun party compositions.

Please please please reconsider the 4 man limit.



Exactly
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 18/10/20 07:27 PM
We already talked about it in some of the previous pages (or maybe it was in the other big thread about this same topic?) but I want to stress a point again: it's not just about having an effective battle formation, it's also about putting a lot of great loot to good use, so you feel properly rewarded for what you find.

A party of six allows you to build a party where more or less all the range of weapon and armor types are used and useful.
In a party of 4 you either force this differentiation, limiting your options for a party composition even more, OR you'll end up with a lot of loot feeling useless because, for instance, you have one single character that can use "martial" equipment, no one wearing a certain category of armor, etc.
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 19/10/20 07:17 PM
Originally Posted by vyvexthorne
The only reason I'd want 6 companions is if I also get to create my own party. Right now I'm fine with four because I'm not keen on dealing with pre-made companions. While I like games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect, I don't necessarily enjoy all the companion interactions. Overly written companions control the narrative too much.. If I get to create my own party like in IWD then that's more fun for me because it's my own soap opera that I'm creating. I get to create the characters personalities and stories as I play the game. If it's someone elses characters then my brain goes all grumbly whenever they do something out of character for the character I'm trying to play them as.


It would be fun to create your whole party IWD style. With the risk of losing out on companion specific side quests and storylines though
Posted By: Wxdude77 Re: Party Size Discussion - 19/10/20 08:09 PM
I'll go ahead and add my +1 here.

I've always felt that 6 party members was the ideal DnD party in CRPGs... but if the devs feel like 6 is too many, I would be satisfied with 5.

Even having just 1 more party member would make a huge difference and would give a lot more freedom to players to play as they want rather than be forced to fill a certain roll in the party.
Posted By: TheThankfulDeath Re: Party Size Discussion - 19/10/20 08:59 PM
Another issue I have is that on Larians website, it says that once we pick a team, thats it, locked in after act 1. I'm against this.

I may be able to deal with 4 people if I didnt get locked into one party. I'd like to be able to swap, and have different teams for different situation.



Posted By: Lenggao Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 03:22 AM
The point about mods, is that, if they want 4 players to just be a thing for them, they can mod it in so that what they want to restrict people to can be a thing for them.
Posted By: Lenggao Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 03:30 AM
They lock it in to force us to replay the game with other characters probably, because I can't see why, because that's what the reason for DoS was.

If the game will require locking people out of characters, I wouldn't mind it, but would it be as great of a game as we expected it to be if it needs to lock out companions so that their story can be used for another playthrough?
Posted By: nizanegusa Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 04:51 AM
i am obviously in the minority here but i actually like smaller parties more.
my sweet spot is probably 3.
just wanted to add my opinion.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 05:01 AM
Originally Posted by Tuco
"Don't worry, mods will fix it" has always been a bullshit "comfort argument", anyway.
1- There's no guarantee it will happen.
2- IF it happens not having full access to game code and dev tools limits strongly how well modders can make it work.
3- It's bound to be a sub-optimal, unpolished experience prone to bugs and UI limitations compared to something that a developer addresses dirctectly.

Also, for the people who were worrying about "having to redo everything from scratch", Swen has been on record openly stating that they already have the UI in place to scale up to six men, they just weren't confident on the idea to make it the default mode (never mentioned before because it's a video interview he made during a streaming that I never watched until few hours ago), so there's that too.
Let's hope this amount of feedback in favor of six will serve to give their "confidence" about this a boost.

And if anything, let 4-men party as the default for console players. AS people who never played a CRPG with a good control scheme, they may even be able to appreciate it the most.

I'd like add a forth point
4- It makes devs lazy, why add much requested features and fix bugs and balance the game when the can go "fuck it the modders will do our job for free?"
Originally Posted by Black_Elk
Originally Posted by arion
That topic not about UI but original BG Ui is bad and outdated, I do not miss it at all.

Originally Posted by Black_Elk
and players who are familiar with those games will instantly feel more at home.

they feel more home when they will receive 2d game on infinity engine with the RTwP combat, based on 2e so on...there is no reason to try to please them, they will still be unhappy



Fair enough, though I find that attitude kinda demoralizing lol. It presents returning fans as hopeless curmudgeons who could never be satisfied so why bother, when clearly the functionality already exists and it probably isn't all that hard to implement a party of 6 into the design. I know it's likely meant hyperbolically but still, sort of a burn to lock the 6'ers out of the clubhouse hehe. I get it, but this isn't like an MMO where you need the whole player base to be on the same page for everything in order for it to work. This one has always been SP/Co-Op by design, so if we can make more people happy by providing more options that cater to their wishes what's the real harm? Like why leave that loot on the table when we're still in EA?

There are certain touchstones like the 6-man party that could be used to shore up support and help the ease of use for your returning players, especially when the designers choose to depart from the older games more dramatically in other areas. I only mentioned UI organization because, like party size, it seemed like a similarly low hanging fruit. Why not allow for UI elements to be moved around, like many games do, so that players can change it to suit their tastes? Then we could have a "Modern" UI by default, or a "Classic" alternative that could be quickly toggled from a settings tab. Same deal with party size 1-6, why not let the player make that determination, with difficulty settings to match? I feel like its presented as a zero sum thing when it really needn't be.

I keep trying to imagine if it had gone the other direction, and they went with a party of 8 instead of 4 if I'd still be in here arguing for 6? I suspect not, since in my view a larger party provides way more interest across pretty much every dimension of gameplay (and combat not least) for a game with this playstyle where one player is meant to control the entire party (or half the party I guess in the case of Co-Op).

6 is just better in my view, but clearly I'm a partisan. I'd prefer my side to win the debate hehe

Just for a counter point I feel like maybe I'd get more traction arguing why they should cap the party at 3 rather than 4 members. Just to show the opposing logic in starker relief. I'm sure there are plenty of reasons that might make sense to do this from the average PnP/5e session perspective. The party of 3 has always been more common in PnP than 4, and certainly more common than 6.

But that doesn't really apply to Baldur's Gate, cause BG wasn't like an average session. BG was like one of those epic campaigns, the truly legendary ones, that are hella hard to organize and maintain, just because of how challenging it is to get 6 people and a DM all together in one place and keep it going for months and months on end. On the computer everyone got a chance to experience something sort of like that, with the broad archs and long sweeps, like one imagines went down in basements in the late 70s, when Satan still ruled! lol

It just always stings a bit worse when it feels like something is being taken away. We fixate on it more, and maybe more than we should relative to like when we get a bonus. But that's the way my brain works. Wanting something 'back' is just a different feeling, and I think it would register as a fairly massive win for my contingent of the playerbase if EA feedback resulted in a return to 6. Peeps would say 'hey, looks like they really are taking our feedback to heart!'

But I'll tap out now. I think I've posted more than a few times in this here thread. Batons need passing and I'm zorsted from sleep deprivation playing this game haha.

Best,
Elk


Great post thank you for the input, I agree that if the party size was 8 instead of 6 I probably would not complain, but that would mostly be because I would have the choice of how many people to take with me, and if I wanted to recreate a classic party setup I enjoyed in the original games I would not be forced to go up to 8 and could limit myself down, I think what a lot of the people who prefer 4 don't realise is we don't want to take away what they like and want we just want the option to have the same as them, a way to play the way we like and want.
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Traycor
and makes playing an Origin almost mandatory to get a full story experience out of the game since custom PCs have no content.

People keep saying this but I honestly don't care that much about playing these origin stories.
HAving these characters in party and witnessing their questline? Great. Playing in their role? I don't care. I'd gladly give up on having all these "Origins" playable if it just meant having A LOT more companions.

I will probably try out playing as Gale as he seems pretty cool but otherwise I will probably always play as a custom character because that's what Baldur's Gate and D&D is to me, it's about putting my own character in some amazing and fantastical land, it's about telling my own story and seeing how my character reacts and adapts to the world not trying role play as some pre-created character, they are fine as foils for my guy to react off of but they will never be a main focus and I agree more companions overall would be time better spent over making them all origin characters to play as. As it is I'm hoping for recruitable companions in acts 2 and 3 just how in the original games as you went around the world and found new locations you found new and different people who you could bring along, normally before I start a BG campaign I decide what type of character I want to roll then look up and research a little who I'd like to come along and only recruit them, so sometimes i can spend large portions of the game with only a few companions.
Posted By: DistantStranger Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 05:03 AM
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk
Originally Posted by KingNothing69
A party of up to six is the correct decision. Less than that and the game doesn't feel like Baldur's Gate. Solo the game, take only a few companions, or have a full party. That's how the original games worked. Leave it up to the individual and stop thinking that because a party size of four is enough for you that it is OK for everyone else.

And why are we pretending like the game is balanced as is in EA? Do people really think this is how the final game will be? That Larian won't change anything? That there won't be any difficulty sliders? That we can't opt into ways to make the game more or less challenging based on player preference? That's just crazy. It's also stupid to complain about how other people play the game not working with your play style or rudely pretending like you know the financials of these asks and that us peasants posting in the Suggestions & Feedback forum are too dumb to know what we want. Let people play the way they want. D&D is about giving people the power to create stories how they want. That's why the ruleset is so flexible and allows for homebrew (mods for tabletop).

Although if it ends up being that party is fixed after Act 1, then I'll really lose the desire to play this game. Party experimentation is KEY to Baldur's Gate. If you were stuck with the same party for the whole Bhaalspawn saga, then that would suck in a very major way and the pocket plane would be a very sad place.

I expect there will be 12 origin characters at launch, one for each class, and then i would expect a few more that are only available in acts 2 and 3, like you if you are locked in after act 1 ends I won't be impressed
Originally Posted by Peranor
Originally Posted by arion
Originally Posted by Smash Dently
Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game

lol this argue again
what game they need to rebalance?
there no balanced game, all we have is EA which not balanced at all
Originally Posted by nation
[quote=Peranor][quote=arion][quote=Smash Dently] Besides let's say they jump us up to 6 and rebalance the whole game

lol this argue again
what game they need to rebalance?
there no balanced game, all we have is EA which not balanced at all



Yeah, and even if it was. I don't think it would be terrible difficult to add some kind of dynamic balacing to the game that accomodate for your chosen party size. Maybe set it as a starting option when you start a new game. Choose between solo or 2-6 party members. And once the game is started the balance is set and you're locked to the maximum party size of your choise.

+1 i think this would be a really good idea too - something like a 'Behind the DM Screen' pre campaign/character creation screen where you would be able to designate a variety of options that would carry over into the full campaign, many of which could potentially speak to a variety of the discussions and alleviate some concerns on these forums and could be really helpful when setting up a mp campaign specifically.

things that you could possibly toggle that would impact the campaign's 'difficulty/balance', but im sure others here could add to this list
-stat allocation - roll, buy, array
-feat at first level (id argue this could really open up gameplay but could warrant an overall campaign challenge increase)
-classes/races/feats/spell filter etc (more mp oriented tho)
-party size 1-6, but could see why 1,2,4,6 may be more feasible to include and 'balance' at this point (id argue that players should always be able to have a max of 6 open party slots bc enables more player choice and allow players to decide themselves to go 4 or 6, etc.)
-use healing potion as a bonus action
-scale of surface effects
-show/hide dice rolls - im not sure its a good thing to know a dc of a skill check or see that you failed that perception roll, but that being said id rather the dc be set and apply my bonus to the die roll instead of reducing the dc as i think it currently works (id also think this systems presentation may need some tweaking - not a fan of jumping away from the dialogue to just fail a die roll)
-limit info that can be gained from 'examining' npcs and enemies, such as hp or ac
-party interaction during dialogue and trading/bartering (maybe more mp tho)
-more specific class tweaks as the 'dm' allows (ie swapping warlock spells, respecs, multi-class requirements)

i feel the above list (outside maybe the scale of the surface effects) are all common dnd 'house rules' topics you discuss around the table that could also really work to refine an bg3 campaign to fit each persons playstyle. obviously this is all just thoughts/theorycrafting suggestions but i think in particular the discussion regarding having 4v6 party slots and possible required balancing could find solutions for both perspectives with a toggable pre-campaign dynamic balance as mentioned above by peranor

also, maybe tangentially related, but i think balance should be focused around encounters not party size or level - i want to adapt to the challenges and world of bg3 not the opposite way around

I like his idea, and yours as well, more options is always a good thing.
Originally Posted by Black_Elk
They can't have failed to notice by now that it will be a real sticking point for a lot people. This is already one of the longest threads in this feedback section, and its been brought up in many others.

I'm not terribly inspired by the idea that if the devs don't do it, then motivated modders will be able to solve everything. This doesn't strike me as a game that will be particularly easy to mod. NWN was basically a modders dream, but lack of party control, with henchmen instead of a full party kinda sank it, despite all the other innovative things that were done. It was a perennial disappointment there even with like 3 expansions and a sequel, that we never got a party control system there. And that one was by the same developer. Larian is so much closer, much much closer to the BG vibe than NWN ever was, but they are kinda shooting themselves in the foot by hamstringing us with a party limited to 4.

4 makes it feel like Valkyrie needs food!

6 is what we want lol






+1
Posted By: Anfindel Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 07:29 AM
Folks keep saying that limiting it to 4 characters increases the replayability factor. However, there are some of us out here who have real life responsibilities that do not allow for massive replay time sink. Some weeks I'm lucky to get 5 to 10 hours of play time in - I want to maximize my time, experiencing a larger group of characters . I play many games, alternating which I am playing at any given time, depending on my mood, how much time I can devote that day, how many interruptions I can expect and so on. I see no reason I can't have the 6 character game I want, that would keep someone else from the 4 , 2 or 1 character game THEY want to play. That's the point of different difficulty levels, and the reward or lack thereof of splitting xp and loot among
a greater or fewer number of characters
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 02:54 PM
Originally Posted by TheThankfulDeath
Another issue I have is that on Larians website, it says that once we pick a team, thats it, locked in after act 1. I'm against this.

I may be able to deal with 4 people if I didnt get locked into one party. I'd like to be able to swap, and have different teams for different situation.




Indeed. If they do go through with the (terrible) idea to lock in the team after act 1, then the 4 people group limitation will be even worse.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 02:56 PM
Originally Posted by Peranor
[quote=TheThankfulDeath]Another issue I have is that on Larians website, it says that once we pick a team, thats it, locked in after act 1. I'm against this.
Indeed. If they do go through with the idea to lock in the team after act 1, then the 4 people group limitation will be even worse.


Made the same argument in the past pages: it's a bad idea in general, but it becomes downright awful if you limit the party size to three companions.
Posted By: Sigi98 Re: Party Size Discussion - 20/10/20 02:56 PM
Originally Posted by Peranor
Originally Posted by TheThankfulDeath
Another issue I have is that on Larians website, it says that once we pick a team, thats it, locked in after act 1. I'm against this.

I may be able to deal with 4 people if I didnt get locked into one party. I'd like to be able to swap, and have different teams for different situation.




Indeed. If they do go through with the idea to lock in the team after act 1, then the 4 people group limitation will be even worse.



I agree, but I fear they won't budge on this because of a story reason that is already fixed smirk
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 06:21 AM
Originally Posted by Sigi98



I agree, but I fear they won't budge on this because of a story reason that is already fixed smirk



Yeah, that is what i'm afraid of as well. Doesn't mean I like it though smile
Posted By: Black_Elk Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 11:16 AM
Its been brought up before but just to highlight that when there is a party of 6 players you also get more opportunities to play different equipment or spell loadouts. I think it'd be particularly nice for spells and arcane casters esp since it makes preparing utility spells more viable. Right now they really need to focus on dmg but if you have like another wizard or bard in the group you can have one dude wrecking fire balls and another with like abjuration or going illusion style.

With 6 there is more room to redupilcate class but with a different focus, after the core 4 the fifth and sixth slot is where the party variety comes into play.

The prob with everyone can do everything, is that you have to long rest and change loadouts constantly if you want to try something off key. So instead you just go with whatever is most OP for that archetype.

In BG1 by the time you got to the Friendly Arm inn you had Charname, plus Imoen and Montaron/Xzar pairing. The Khalid and Jaheira pairing came soon as you got to the Inn. These were cool because they were already grouped together. So you had the Harpers or Zhents choice pretty early and a reason sometimes to see one chunked with amusing one liners from the other companion.

There was just way more gameplay nuance involved in selecting a party composition and who to ditch or switch. In the Beregost area you could pick up a Bard or another Fighter. There was a Ranger or Cleric just outside town. By the time you reached the mines you had already encountered like a dozen possible companions. That's the vibe that's missing right now for me with only 4.


Posted By: DZs7 Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 03:47 PM
Too be honest I don't see good reasons to change it now. From most players perspective party of 6 is old fashioned and mostly just matter of personal taste. From sales perspective Larian way of doing things works and most people agree with it.
Finally the most important from game design perspective everything is written, design (gameplay, multiplayer and so on), made and balance around party of 4. So chaining it now would created unnecessary chaos to please just the one group of people.

So making party of 6 a basic feature of the game? Big no. Making engine handle party of 6 so mods will allow it without any problems? Yes, go with it.
Posted By: nation Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 04:52 PM
Originally Posted by DZs7
Too be honest I don't see good reasons to change it now. From most players perspective party of 6 is old fashioned and mostly just matter of personal taste. From sales perspective Larian way of doing things works and most people agree with it.
Finally the most important from game design perspective everything is written, design, made and balance around party of 4. So chaining it now would created unnecessary chaos to please just the one group of people.

So making party of 6 a basic feature of the game? Big no. Making engine handle party of 6 so mods will allow it without any problems? Yes, go with it.
i agree with your thoughts that at this stage in the game it may be difficult to accomplish, particularly if larian has designed the game as you indicated above around a party of 4 (we sure this is the case?) - but respectfully i disagree and think that making 6 the party size should be the standard as it was the standard in the og bg games and this is supposed to be bg3 (altho reviewing some other posts i feel like some would prefer this as dos2: baldurs gate edition - i dont see enough significant enhancements/improvements to this game that would cause me to even call it dos3). also, please note that by making the standard be 6 slots still allows for players to have a 4 person party (or solo plays) so having a party of 6 isnt alienating a segment of the fan base whereas the reversal seems to be as a card carrying member of the pro6 party. and again, you say that the game is balanced around a party of 4, but larian themselves has said that you can recruit 'mercs' to round out a party and some have been able to get up to 6 in mp so does this argument really hold any weight?

i still struggle to see any concrete points as to why larian wouldnt want to bump the party size up to 6 other than
-resources/money (they just crushed their ea sales so i doubt that is the case - if anything it should show them the potential this game has and reinforce larians desire to work with the community to make the game even better than it is currently),
-timing (we are still a year out and this is the whole purpose of ea feedback, and larian has released multiple support patches post their dos1/2 launches so i suppose this could be done similarly, but i have my apprehensions),
-mods will do it (spending $60 on an ea game where one of the largest feedback points isnt being heard only so mods can support or what many consider fix a primary gameplay mechanic just doesnt sit well with me),
-balancing issues (which i dont think has a lot of weight given if you are lucky/save scum with die rolls you can bypass various encounters - i also dont think encounters [outside of random encounters/mobs, which is another game mechanic that larian seems to be moving away from relating to the og bg games] should scale either, as it detracts from a sense of character progression if the world levels with your party but thats a post for another thread)

i would just refer folks to the variety of valid and thought out posts that discusses the rationale and reasoning for having a party of 6 be the standard while still allowing for solo and party of four runs, and challenge ppl to give productive and constructive critiques, around both good and bad aspects of the game, instead of falling back on any of the above tired arguments against parties of 6 or saying that from a sales perspective that larians way of doing things works (debateable) and most ppl agree with it (again, debateable) as this just comes across as excuse making/fanboyism for larian and really isnt productive.
Posted By: DZs7 Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 07:18 PM
@nation

Will expand my thinking. You assumption is that party of 6 should be standard, because of few reasons:

* Because previous games were like that. Indeed they were, but why we should we really stick with it? Both of this games are now archaic and are long closed story. I'm fan of both previous Baldur's Gate games, but being honest here. Without sentimental aspect Baldur's Gate 1 is just good game with average story and it didn't pass the test of time. Baldur's Gate 2 looks much better in this aspect, but still it's a relic of the past. I won't go with all this seems like Divinity 3/ Divinity: Baldur's Gate talk- not only, because it isn't related to the topic at all, but also if someone remembers how many placeholders from DoS1 were in the EA for DoS2 then there is just no point to speak about it at this stage of game/EA. So I don't really see why we should hold argument like this at all.

* Without party of 6 some players will be alienated. Yes, maybe- maybe not. However, same will happen if they will change it to party of 6. Some people would say that now it's too much of party management, too chaotic or something else. Also if they will change it once then another group will rise saying something like make it party of 8 or party of 10, because system/game/universe XYZ haves it that way. Yes your argument here is valid, but same goes for any other party size. Also like you said that party of 4 being way to go is debatable, well same goes for party of 6 being consider fix for primary gameplay mechanic- it's debatable. No matter what someone won't like the final outcome.

* Is game really made around party of 4? Yes and overall fight balance is lesser concern here. We talking about things like story, narration, dialogue system and other mayor mechanics and aspects of the game. This project is huge already which is reflected in pure numbers and statistics (at least compared to theirs previous game). In the end changing it would consume set amount of manpower to once again please just one group of people in the end.

Another things why should they stick with party of 4 is overall vision for the game. They had something in mind and it's one of the core/ground rules/aspects for game like this. It's kind of like asking devs of Pathfinder to make game around party of 4 for various valid reasons. Sometimes creators just must go with things that thought will be the best for theirs game.



Valid solution would be adding another play mode with party of 6 and maybe things like Active Pause mode in Enhanced Edition sometime after the premiere. This game really needs valid polish and improvements, so there is just no time and it's unnecessary to try please everyone with very personal taste based things now.

Posted By: nation Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 10:00 PM
i appreciate the response my dude, and i do want to say that my earlier post didnt mean to single you out but instead to speak to some of the larger themes ive seen in ppls counterarguments to the base 6person party size (while still allowing for ppl to do solo and 4man runs using their 6 'party slots' - like how you can currently still do solo runs despite the 4party limit), so my apologies for that - but, respectfully i pretty much disagree or have issues with every position you made in your response lol
Originally Posted by DZs7
@nation

Will expand my thinking. You assumption is that party of 6 should be standard, because of few reasons:

* Because previous games were like that. Indeed they were, but why we should we really stick with it? Both of this games are now archaic and are long closed story. I'm fan of both previous Baldur's Gate games, but being honest here. Without sentimental aspect Baldur's Gate 1 is just good game with average story and it didn't pass the test of time. Baldur's Gate 2 looks much better in this aspect, but still it's a relic of the past. I won't go with all this seems like Divinity 3/ Divinity: Baldur's Gate talk- not only, because it isn't related to the topic at all, but also if someone remembers how many placeholders from DoS1 were in the EA for DoS2 then there is just no point to speak about it at this stage of game/EA. So I don't really see why we should hold argument like this at all.

* Without party of 6 some players will be alienated. Yes, maybe- maybe not. However, same will happen if they will change it to party of 6. Some people would say that now it's too much of party management, too chaotic or something else. Also if they will change it once then another group will rise saying something like make it party of 8 or party of 10, because system/game/universe XYZ haves it that way. Yes your argument here is valid, but same goes for any other party size. Also like you said that party of 4 being way to go is debatable, well same goes for party of 6 being consider fix for primary gameplay mechanic- it's debatable. No matter what someone won't like the final outcome.

* Is game really made around party of 4? Yes and overall fight balance is lesser concern here. We talking about things like story, narration, dialogue system and other mayor mechanics and aspects of the game. This project is huge already which is reflected in pure numbers and statistics (at least compared to theirs previous game). In the end changing it would consume set amount of manpower to once again please just one group of people in the end.

Another things why should they stick with party of 4 is overall vision for the game. They had something in mind and it's one of the core/ground rules/aspects for game like this. It's kind of like asking devs of Pathfinder to make game around party of 4 for various valid reasons. Sometimes creators just must go with things that thought will be the best for theirs game.



Valid solution would be adding another play mode with party of 6 and maybe things like Active Pause mode in Enhanced Edition sometime after the premiere. This game really needs valid polish and improvements, so there is just no time and it's unnecessary to try please everyone with very personal taste based things now.
this is all mainly related to the 6 v 4 person party debate:

-bc the previous bg games were like this - ya and this is supposed to be bg3, but i do agree that the bhaalspawn plot should be tossed

-bc the previous bg games are 'dated' and were just good or are currently looked at thru rose colored glasses - i just think this is plain false given that baldurs gate is credited with reviving the genre, has universal 4/5 or 9/10 star reviews, and is the standard which many like games are now compared to and from which many of the games since have drawn inspiration. bg was 'the' computer dnd game and was so good that now 20 years later they are still selling copies of the game (which as an aside speaks to the overall lack of 'new' or innovation in the gaming industry given all of the new definitive/enhanced/next gen rereleases of older games) and to be frank, i think the hype for this game had more to do with the title being bg3 than having larian as the developer. i understand that was adnd rules tho so i can be sympathetic to the issues in adapting 5e, but i didnt anticipate such a drastic departure in some aspects and could do with more 5e rules/mechanics in some of these areas (surfaces, food, elevation, etc.)

-i actually dont think theres enough innovation from dos2 in this game for it to get a new number, so i agree the dos3 talk is premature, but i think dos2: bg is valid given the merging of the game mechanics, origin v custom characters, shared limited party size, dos2 party and camera control, and dos2 like narrative weve got so far (ie shared plot/narrative with our companions with tadpoles in this instance, possible limited companion choice after the first act, act maps, even being a survivor on a beach) - but i agree also with what you said about this being ea so alot of things are subject to change so all we can really do is just theorycraft at this point

-without a party of 6 some players will be alienated - yes. thats it. you argue that the same will happen for ppl who prefer 4 over 6 - i agree that some ppl may, but i dont think this is correlated as you suggest. with having a party of 6, players can still opt in to just running a party with 4 members - you still have choice. by limiting party size to 4 you dont even have the option in the base game to have 6 companions. and if its too much party management, or chaotic, or 'something else' for a player, they can still opt to just run 4 and avoid such a hassle that 6 members may present.

-if they change it will ppl ask for them to increase it further? - maybe, thats true. i agree at some point that you would need to limit party size, but your rationale that xyz system or game has it doesnt carry much water if you ask me, as the xyz we should be caring about here is the og bg games (id like more allusions to the forgotten realms too just as an aside) which had up to 6members and shares the same name as this game. im actually having some difficulty thinking of any similar rpg game that has party dynamics that has 8-10 party members? any suggestions - being serious, actually sounds fun to play, lol

-i agree with your overall point that whats best for 4v6 is up for debate/interpretation/personal preference - but what i am arguing for and asking that larian implements is the option for you to still play with a party of 4 while allowing for a party of up to 6 so we both as players can win and enjoy the game, while those in the pro4 party seem to be advocating against players being able to have that option and thereby artificially limiting our choices/options. when framed this way, not considering costs/resources/etc. which is another facet of this question, i dont really think its up for debate. larian should implement up to 6 party members - can they and will they are two different questions.

-your next two points around if the game is really made around a party of 4 and their overall vision for the game - i think this is a larger discussion about what larians vision for the game was when they first began development to where it is now that they are receiving feedback from the community, so i guess my response to that is that i just disagree with what their vision for this game should be in regards to this specific party size topic as alot of other ppl have also voiced in the forum and this is purposefully the opportunity to give feedback in the hope that larian considers as they work to create the game? and i would say that the group of ppl in the pro6 or unaligned and dont care is the larger segment of the bg community and again this change wouldnt take away your ability to run4. regarding what the scope of such an overhaul may be in terms of resources, and larian isnt some small indie developer, idk if i have a lot of sympathy for that rationale, especially considering the numbers they just got from the ea. i am also skeptical about how 'difficult' implementing two additional characters to your party would be (frankly, i also think the game could do with more interparty interactions and companion input during dialogue encounters) or if it would really imbalance encounters (which is another topic) and again, it just comes off as empty rationalizing.

-i dont really care about the devs for pathfinder since we are talking dnd 5e here, but relating to creators sticking with their vision for a game thru to launch - for every one you can find im sure you could also find a multiple more that either made changes based on feedback and were better for it or didnt make changes and didnt make it. constructive feedback can only work to improve a game (or anything really) and saying things like 'sometimes creators just must go with things that thought will be the best for theirs game.' isnt in any way productive or meaningful feedback

-what you said about a valid solution being multiple game modes i agree with, and you also mention RTwP (which, lol oddly enough as someone who really enjoyed the og bg games im against as i think turnbased fits 5e and dnd better), but then you state that the game needs real polish and theres no time and its unnecessary to try to please everyone so lets wait and hope to get these in enhanced editions - i think that mentality sets such a low bar for larian and the expectations for what should be the re-invigoration of what has long been considered a flagship franchise in the genre, so i just dont prescribe to it.

to wrap, ill just say that i have been enjoying my experience playing this game in ea - for the most part it sounds like the majority of us all are, but i disagree with some of the changes in game design from the predecessors to larians iteration and havent really found any concrete or substantive reasoning as to why larians way of doing it is better
Posted By: Black_Elk Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 10:16 PM
Originally Posted by DZs7
Too be honest I don't see good reasons to change it now. From most players perspective party of 6 is old fashioned and mostly just matter of personal taste. From sales perspective Larian way of doing things works and most people agree with it.
Finally the most important from game design perspective everything is written, design (gameplay, multiplayer and so on), made and balance around party of 4. So chaining it now would created unnecessary chaos to please just the one group of people.

So making party of 6 a basic feature of the game? Big no. Making engine handle party of 6 so mods will allow it without any problems? Yes, go with it.


From a sales perspective, OK I mean they already got my 70 some odd bucks. I'm sure they could cash out now, not change anything substantial out of EA feedback, "stay true to their vision" or "stick to their guns" or insert whatever euphemism we like for essentially ignoring the feedback, even after consideration. But it'd also make me a lot less inclined to buy an expansion or sequel if that was their approach.

Party of 6 isn't a complete deal breaker for me, though I really do think its better on the merits and not just purely based on my nostalgia for the archaic. 4 does not feel Epic enough for me, but perhaps if they listen to feedback in other substantive areas my disappointment about that can be allayed. I actually think it will be better for the points like narration, story, dialogue system and every other mechanic I can think of to have 6. Most issues I have with micromanagement currently have way more to do with UI organization and pathing fails, than the number of PCs I'm controlling in the party. Everyone is already following me to camp anyway, so I basically already do have a party of 6, at least for many of the narrative components, I just don't get to have them along for the ride when actually playing. It may be a matter of taste, but I'd much rather have 5 companions than 3, since I think it would be more engaging all around.

I bought this thing mainly because I wanted to support the franchise and have high hopes for BGIII. I fully expected the EA to be half baked, and this still feels very much like an incomplete game atm. I've enjoyed it, but its also missing many features that I would have expected and the lack of the 5th and 6th party slot is not the clunkiest of clunky things going on right now.

They need to work on stuff like camera control and party movement pathing, inventory and spell management, hotbars and general UI stuff too. Which all seems way more important to me than scaling the difficulty levels around a particular party size or balancing combats etc just yet. Balancing is a long haul. How much balancing are they going to be able do anyway if we are only testing a 3rd of the game in EA? I'd prefer 6, maybe I'm old fashioned though I don't know. I think this is low hanging fruit, and would likely please more people than it would annoy, but that's just my anecdotal sense of things. For everyone motivated enough to actually post on forums, leave a review, or join a discord to yammer away about stuff there are probably a couple dozen players who just go with what's given and wouldn't be chiming in. I don't have a sense of what most people want, but I know what matters to me. I think they'd be unlikely to get another 70 bucks out of me at this point. Especially if its just like thanks for the feedback and for helping us to find and crush all these bugs, but we're going to hard pass on making any major changes due to already sunk costs. If its take 'it or leave it', I'm already taken I guess, but it leaves a bit of a bitter taste, since I really do have high hopes for this one. Plus it just seems like not particularly complicated to pull off. It not like they have to rebuild it from the ground up to make this happen. If its already in the MP game it should be there in SP too.
Posted By: Poecile Re: Party Size Discussion - 21/10/20 11:11 PM
+1
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/10/20 02:40 PM
I doubt it would require that much effort from Larian to adjust the game engine to handle 6 character groups. If a modder with no access to the source code can enable it for D:OS2 then I'm sure Larian can manage it for BG3 as well.
Not sure what they have planned for the story though and how having a 6 character party would affect that. But hopefully we will get some clarification from them soon. This is a popular topic after all.
Posted By: arion Re: Party Size Discussion - 22/10/20 06:04 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco


I meant more the internal panels (inventory, equipment and so on) rather than the basic UI, but still, thanks for the screen.

from reddit

https://imgur.com/a/PLaS50O#PSmcfxK

little late, but. its scales pretty fine, so not problem here for larian i think

Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 09:33 AM
I thik we should at last try it ...
Especialy when the world is still young and adaptable.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 11:10 AM
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
I thik we should at last try it ...
Especialy when the world is still young and adaptable.


I agree with that.
It would be complicated to try it later.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 12:41 PM
Originally Posted by Black_Elk
Baldur's gate is the most replayed D&D CRPG of all time

It had 25 recruitable companions and a full party of 6 members.

In terms of the possible party combinations, the "25 recruitable companions" is the more important part of the equation than the 6 member party cap, but they are both relevant.

As pointed out earlier in this thread there are many more combinations available with the cap at 6 than there are with the cap at just 4, provided we have a decent number of total companions available. The number of combinations practically doubles when going from 4 to 6 if the total number of companions is raised to say 10 rather than just the 5 currently available. This increases even more dramatically again if we go from a possible 10 companions to say 15 or 20 companions in the roster.

Right now initial impressions are being based on the 5 recruit-able companions currently available in EA, and a full party of 4 members. But there's no way it could end up just being 5 companions or just one or two beyond that thrown in later as some have suggested. That would be a crazy hard fail from the team holding the crown right now. They'd need like a dozen companions just for it to even hold a torch to the epic glory of BG1. So I fully expect them to double or triple the number of companions by the time this thing goes live just to do it justice by the BG standard. I mean they got what, a dozen writers on it? Seems about right.

It makes sense for Larian to tease them in smaller numbers like this too, so that their EA can focus on the party interactions/compositions they feel need the most feedback, and probably more importantly to give us a reason to keep tuning in when they drop their larger patches to expand the content. But there are bound to be a lot more companions, and if that's the case, a full party of 6 is going to give a huge amount of variety in party composition over just 4... even accounting for a few companion pairings that might not be compatible long term without things coming to blows inside the camp.

There are plenty of amazing ways to make an awesome 4 person game by design, or to make a game with only 2 characters when the goal is a Kurvitz style masterpiece. But we're not taking about just any game. This is the heavy weight title we're talking about! This is Baldur's Gate III

It really should be trying to distill the essence of what made the other two preceding titles so rad, and part of that was the variety of possible party compositions. I just can't see the logic that says giving us fewer characters in our group somehow gives us more choices, or better or more interesting choices. it just doesn't pencil for me. Closes off more doors than it opens and diminishes the replay in the long run. Creating a party building vibe that's concordant with the previous titles in the franchise, and building it out with those kinds of limits in mind is what I'd dig.

I really think the party of 4 is going to become more problematic later on, when the encounters scale to epic territory. This is why a lot of us are hearing the internal alarm bells sounding, and trying to argue for a fix now, while there is time to fix it. I mean we definitely expect a game with a Dragon combat or two eventually right? That's going to be a lot harder to pull off in style with just 4, while still maintaining a classically epic sensibility. I mean unless the plan is just to toss us a bunch of non controllable friendlies? This seems to be the go-to approach in many of these EA battles right now, and maybe it works alright when there are narrative reasons (like "the Blade of Frontiers!" sounding his horn, or NPCs that are part of the story) but as a player I feel less invested in the encounter when this is overused. I'd rather have a party of 6 that I can fully control and really work to defeat the opposing crew, than half a dozen random friendlies appearing in every other encounter, just to serve as fodder so that the combats can be balanced by teams/sides.

Just like a good DM, a good difficulty setting in the options should allow everything in these encounters to scale, whether the player elects to cruise with 6 people or just 4.

But still, if you really want it to hit the nostalgia button and go for broke, I'm chanting 6 6 6! Even though I know I said I'd tap out, the gravitational pull of this thread just seems inexorable for me lol







well said, I'm expecting at least 12 origin characters at launch, one for each class and if there aren't more people able to be recruited in later chapters I will be extremely disappointed.
Posted By: Sir Sparhawk Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 01:32 PM
Originally Posted by nizanegusa
i am obviously in the minority here but i actually like smaller parties more.
my sweet spot is probably 3.
just wanted to add my opinion.

Your opinion is totally valid and I champion the choice to play the way you want. In most CRPGs be it Dragon Age, D&D, Pathfinder or D:OS anyone who likes to play with a more compact and refined party as all the tools at their disposal to do so and that is great, I just wish that developers would consider giving people who like a bigger party an option to play how they want as well.
Originally Posted by Black_Elk
Its been brought up before but just to highlight that when there is a party of 6 players you also get more opportunities to play different equipment or spell loadouts. I think it'd be particularly nice for spells and arcane casters esp since it makes preparing utility spells more viable. Right now they really need to focus on dmg but if you have like another wizard or bard in the group you can have one dude wrecking fire balls and another with like abjuration or going illusion style.

With 6 there is more room to redupilcate class but with a different focus, after the core 4 the fifth and sixth slot is where the party variety comes into play.

The prob with everyone can do everything, is that you have to long rest and change loadouts constantly if you want to try something off key. So instead you just go with whatever is most OP for that archetype.

In BG1 by the time you got to the Friendly Arm inn you had Charname, plus Imoen and Montaron/Xzar pairing. The Khalid and Jaheira pairing came soon as you got to the Inn. These were cool because they were already grouped together. So you had the Harpers or Zhents choice pretty early and a reason sometimes to see one chunked with amusing one liners from the other companion.

There was just way more gameplay nuance involved in selecting a party composition and who to ditch or switch. In the Beregost area you could pick up a Bard or another Fighter. There was a Ranger or Cleric just outside town. By the time you reached the mines you had already encountered like a dozen possible companions. That's the vibe that's missing right now for me with only 4.



+1 This is why I'm hoping for more recruitable companions in later chapters, it was always so much fun to build your team over the course of the game.
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 04:32 PM
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk

+1 This is why I'm hoping for more recruitable companions in later chapters, it was always so much fun to build your team over the course of the game.



I truly hope so. If Larian have us pick our 3 companions during chapter 1 and then lock us to those 3 companions for the rest of the game , then the 4 character party limit will feel even worse.
Posted By: VhexLambda Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 04:55 PM
I really do hope that if they increase the party limit size we could get some better party controls and group jump.

Because currently the party managing thing, lock/unlock stuff from DOSII is just annoying.
Posted By: lvl20DM Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 07:49 PM
I'd love party size to be increased to 5 (or 6, though that really is quite a bit for a game like this). I believe that Wizards of the Coast has said that the typical D&D party is 1 DM and 5 players, on average. For that reason I'd like to see a bigger party (because that is what I see at my tables).

That said - in 5e you don't "need" certain classes in the same you did in the last 2 editions. In 5e, you even have multiple options for a "healer" character - cleric, druid, bard, paladin and even Sorcerer and Warlock (if you use options from Xanathar's Guide like the Celestial warlock patron). A "tank" role can be filled by lots of classes, including some Clerics and Monks. Most classes are capable of high damage.
Posted By: brunotavm Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 07:52 PM
5 would be perfect: tank/healer/rogue/wizard/whatever you wanna be

Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 23/10/20 08:22 PM
Originally Posted by Peranor
Originally Posted by Sir Sparhawk

+1 This is why I'm hoping for more recruitable companions in later chapters, it was always so much fun to build your team over the course of the game.



I truly hope so. If Larian have us pick our 3 companions during chapter 1 and then lock us to those 3 companions for the rest of the game , then the 4 character party limit will feel even worse.


Sorry, I missunderstood smile
Posted By: White.Kelevra Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/10/20 02:47 AM
+1 - but 5 it's ok.
(look like PoE-II)
Posted By: Jalthran Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/10/20 03:08 AM
+1
Posted By: virion Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/10/20 06:05 PM
TBH the amount of different characters you can choose from matters but the max amount of companions within the party straight up doesn't matter after me. Yes, storywise it helps since you can have more interactions in there and between the characters.

But on the mid-maxing side of things it makes it harder. I made 1 run with 6 characters in BG 1&2 , ended up with a 4 man party very quick ^^. Mostly because BG1&2 had a very silly solution for exping in the game lol.

Originally Posted by Aeridyne
Originally Posted by Seraphael
Finally, a smaller party makes the party selection/character build decisions matter more. Larian has got this.



Baldurs Gate I & II had a ton of different party members you could pick up which
And again one more time, just because you CAN get by with a 4 person party you can make the same argument for even smaller parties too until you are only playing the main character and your other party members if any are just uncontrollable NPCs. But would that game be BG? Not really. Would a 4 member party game be BG? Not really. Would a game that doesn't have a plethora of party members to choose from like the previous ones be BG? Not really. But would a game with a 6 character party and lots of different characters to choose from be BG? Well yes it would! Ding ding ding, we have a winner.


Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 24/10/20 09:34 PM
Originally Posted by virion
TBH the amount of different characters you can choose from matters but the max amount of companions within the party straight up doesn't matter after me. Yes, storywise it helps since you can have more interactions in there and between the characters.

But on the mid-maxing side of things it makes it harder. I made 1 run with 6 characters in BG 1&2 , ended up with a 4 man party very quick ^^. Mostly because BG1&2 had a very silly solution for exping in the game lol.


You mean that the official D&D "exping" system is bad ?
BG allow you to play from 1 to 6 character with this "silly" mecanics wink
Posted By: ChickenInSpace Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 12:12 AM
A party of six would be the best choice for a number of reasons:

It offers a much greater tactical variety to gameplay though composition.
It offers a much greater social variety to gameplay, also because you can get more different people to hang out so to speak.
The PC (Player Character) will be much less pigeon-holed into certain builds due to what characters you can recruit/have in party.
It will alleviate much of the "miss-frustration" when you have two more potential hits.

I do not believe the added management will be detrimental in the slightest - just look at Wasteland 3! Brand new game with six people to handle and it's smooth and doesn't bog down the game in any way when comparing to DOS1 and 2.

5e adventures normally state four as a minimum number. Anyone who has played or DM'd a group of three for whatever reason can easily testify that it's borderline impossible without seriously re-balancing many things. With four, it can be pretty tight and you really need to tailor the party to a much larger extent, so much so that some players may end up not really playing what they want to play. The sweetspot is really around five to six players which allows rather diverse skillsets, maybe some doubles (which isn't at all bad, double dipping some skills in the party is Very useful).

Having the extremely low number of four with DnD ruleset is mostly a pain which cuts right into fun-time. Larian says it's easy to mod into six? Maybe they should mod it to six themselves, then? I'm very OK with waiting if it takes longer to implement.
Because Larian is used to doing four character parties should not be a reason to go with four. Saying it's because of the nature of how fleshed out the characters are shouldn't be a reason either - and it IS fine if some characters are less fleshed out than others. Not every character will have a massively interesting background or super intricate plotline designed to them.
For some characters, this adventure COULD be their interesting background. "Yeah, back in my younger days, I joined up with the hero who fought the Mindflayers. What a time. What a time..." *sips ale*. This offers at least one character/position of being quite fresh out the factory, so to speak, and will potentially instead be formed much more from what they experience through the game. This, to me, sounds like a very interesting take.

As a closing statement I'd say that I'll even take five character party, although I feel it's not optimal for fun purposes. Just not four. Four is simply too few.
Posted By: etonbears Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 02:29 PM
While I understand the reasons for preferring a larger party, I can't say I think it would be an improvement in BG3.

EA seems to play OK with a party of four; if you expand the party size, I can see 2 problems related to the turn-based combat being used.

- the number of enemies in encounters would also increase, leading to even longer encounter resolution, when some of them are pretty turgid already. This could, perhaps, be alleviated by using fewer, but more powerful enemies.

- increased party size would exacerbate problems with party characters blocking each other, which you can't resolve because of the limitations of turn-based movement. This is less easy to alleviate, as it would mean re-working the game world to have less choke points, many of which are related to the significantly vertical nature of the game world.
Posted By: nation Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 03:06 PM
Originally Posted by etonbears
While I understand the reasons for preferring a larger party, I can't say I think it would be an improvement in BG3.

EA seems to play OK with a party of four; if you expand the party size, I can see 2 problems related to the turn-based combat being used.

- the number of enemies in encounters would also increase, leading to even longer encounter resolution, when some of them are pretty turgid already. This could, perhaps, be alleviated by using fewer, but more powerful enemies.

- increased party size would exacerbate problems with party characters blocking each other, which you can't resolve because of the limitations of turn-based movement. This is less easy to alleviate, as it would mean re-working the game world to have less choke points, many of which are related to the significantly vertical nature of the game world.
i am pro having 6 open slots for your party, which then allows the players to decide themselves if they want to roll 4, 6, or even solo. i agree with the two most significant issues that you cited (which you also go on to provide solutions for), as these are also other common critiques that ppl have cited in other places in the forums without even considering the party size - ie. rebalance combat related encounters (id argue using more 5e based rules would help alot here) and the limitations and frustrations that the current combat movement (and overall party movement control using the dos2 'chaining' system) controls present (not considering how the current camera controls can also compound this problem). im not sure how much feedback we can expect larian to take from these forum posts (idk when the last time we heard from larian was) but i do hope that the concerns and suggestions that you posted are relayed to the devs as alot of folks agree with the points you made (outside of the party of 4 choice wink )
Posted By: KillerRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 06:20 PM
I played with a 6 party mod and it worked great right up until the point it failed to launch the grove party. The game is already set up to accommodate 6 party members.

There were some things that would need to fixed

-- party management. A couple of times my toons did a little dance trying to find where to stand
- the default party formation was the bowling pin one
- party inventory, with six people the items got so small I had a hard time seeing them
- minor graphic glitch during conversations where the extra two party members merge into another NPC

But I got what I wanted, more banters / conversations and it felt a bit more like Baldur's Gate.

Posted By: FaultyValve Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 06:24 PM
I agree that adding one or two party members would make the game more fun. As a four person party I often have to choose which class functionality to leave behind to bring one of the NPCs for their quest. example, in my current play-through I'm a wizard, so my main party is me, Lae'zel, Shadowheart, and Astarion. So when either Gale or Wyll need a quest done, (like Wyll wanting to kill the goblin leaders) I basicaly have to pick between Lae'zel or Astarion to leave behind...because ya'know... healer.
A 5 person party would fix this completely and wouldn't require much difficulty tweaking at all.
Posted By: MatronPain Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 06:44 PM
When you are playing in rl then 4 players can do most things as players have unlimited minds. They can do anything they can think of and if they can surprise the DM they might even live through some of them.

Computer games are severely limited in that respect. For me 6 is better in a game like this as you get more playing options, instead of just tank, heal, trap, cast (or variations there of). With 4 you feel you are leaving things out of your party.

And as they have decided to call this BG3 and are selling the game as BG3 then it should at least be similar to BG1 and 2.

Its only a pity we don't have 2nd ed rules as well as a six man party.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 09:38 PM
Originally Posted by MatronPain
When you are playing in rl then 4 players can do most things as players have unlimited minds. They can do anything they can think of and if they can surprise the DM they might even live through some of them.

Computer games are severely limited in that respect. For me 6 is better in a game like this as you get more playing options, instead of just tank, heal, trap, cast (or variations there of). With 4 you feel you are leaving things out of your party.

And as they have decided to call this BG3 and are selling the game as BG3 then it should at least be similar to BG1 and 2.

Its only a pity we don't have 2nd ed rules as well as a six man party.


Pretty much.
That's precisely why "Pen & paper sessions are usually tuned for four players" is a bogus argument to bring to the table.
Because they are two very different scenarios. In tabletop sessions four persons agree on how to build up a team from scratch and they are limited only by their imaginations on the way they can interact with each other.
In a computer game you make up your party out of the limited options offered by a certain number of premade companions and their mutual interactions across the entire campaign are limited to a (more or less dynamic) handful of pre-established scenarios.

It's like arguing that in a RTS you shouldn't control more than a vehicle because in reality driving more than a car at once is almost impossible.


Posted By: Clawfoot Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 09:52 PM
Why on Earth are people saying that the game would have taken years longer to develop if it had 6 party memebers? That makes no sense. How would increasing the party size from 4 to 6 require years worth of programming? Don't be silly.

4-man party size in D&D video games has always been awful because the game is designed around the assumption that a party will contain at least one of each of the four core archetypes, so when that's already a full party, it leaves very little room for party makeup variety. While you can play through the game without a rogue or warrior or whatever, it's pretty obvious that D&D isn't meant to be played that way. That works alright in tabletop where there isn't the same need for replayability, but in a game that belongs (nominally, at least) to a franchise whose entire essence is the notion of replayability for literal decades, a 4-man party size is an extremely bad design decision. This is not D:OS where every character can learn any skill.
Posted By: FatePeddler Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 10:01 PM
Originally Posted by Tarorn
I think its 4 because of the amount of background, options, dialogue, pathways to play that they are bringing to the table & it would literally be to expensive to go to 6 man party - either that or we will be waiting another 2 years for the finished game.


The gameplay would be broken as it is now if there were 6 party members. Larian would have to completely remake every single aspect of the gameplay to accomodate 6 party members. Even the terrain does not accomodate more than 4 at times. All the fights would be severely broken and ridiculously easy with 6.

It is an enormous task to ask Larian to rework the game to have 6 party members.

Maybe when the game is completed, but when they are still making the game 4 party members is enough. Unless you want the game to be delayed and delayed and dealyed some more.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 10:04 PM
Originally Posted by Clawfoot
Why on Earth are people saying that the game would have taken years longer to develop if it had 6 party memebers? That makes no sense. .

You're right. It doesn't.
Even the argument that it would make battles "longer and more tedious" is mostly baseless bullshit. In particular in a game where the initiative queue is mixed and if anything having more characters under your control would mean that you as a player can "inject" more often in the mid of lsequences of NPC moves.
A lot of people just love to make up this sort of stuff, for some reason.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 10:12 PM
Originally Posted by FatePeddler

The gameplay would be broken as it is now if there were 6 party members. Larian would have to completely remake every single aspect of the gameplay to accomodate 6 party members.

No, it wouldn't. And no, they wouldn't, either.
Also, all this "concern trolling" about upsetting the current balance is laughable, as there's very little balance to begin with and all the encounters currently available are basically an open work in progress that will require more tuning for months to come regardless of possible party expansions.


Quote
Even the terrain does not accomodate more than 4 at times. All the fights would be severely broken and ridiculously easy with 6.

Another made up and entirely baseless claim, that among other things ignore that managing a party of six wouldn't even be this "crazy experimental idea" but a standard countless games already road-tested for years.

Quote
It is an enormous task to ask Larian to rework the game to have 6 party members.

No, it's not. Modders can already have a six-men party working now, and that's without even a mere fraction of the resources, manpower and access to the game's code Larian would have in its favor.
It would require a rework of the controls, on the other hand. Which it does anyway, because the current ones are the stuff nightmares are made of.
Posted By: Ulla G Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 10:19 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco

No, it's not. Modders can already have a six-men party working now, and that's without even a mere fraction of the resources, manpower and access to the game's code Larian would have in its favor.
It would require a rework of the controls, on the other hand. Which it does anyway, because the current ones are the stuff nightmares are made of.


I was just watching this interview with Sven from back in September and they are aware of modders upping the party number, and he implied they would leave that to mods, saying they can offer a better experience with only 4 characters.

https://youtu.be/S5__muccL1c?t=1498
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 10:26 PM
Originally Posted by Ulla G


I was just watching this interview with Sven from back in September and they are aware of modders upping the party number, and he implied they would leave that to mods, saying they can offer a better experience with only 4 characters.

https://youtu.be/S5__muccL1c?t=1498


Yeah, I know what he said. It's just one of the many times I disagreed with him.
I disagreed with him about the brilliance of the chain/unchain system to control the party (see my signature for more details).
I disagreed with him on the merits of the armor system in DOS 2.
I disagreed with him about a day/night cycle being superfluous and a low priority for immersion
I disagreed with him about randomly generated loot being better than unique handìplaced items in DOS 1 and 2.

This is just going to add to that pile.
I wonder if even this time the epilogue is going to be the same: with Larian sticking to their guns and then coming back two years later saying "Boy, we were wrong and that feature surely sucked, but what's done is done".

And to be clear, no, I'm not happy nor satisfied with "leaving it to mods", because while having a theoretical limit of six can easily be scaled back and rebalanced for a smaller party or even a solo game (as, you know, the previous BG games did) the opposite is not true: a game tuned around a max of four characters is going to feel TRIVIALLY easy played with six.

Posted By: Ulla G Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 10:51 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco

Yeah, I know what he said. It's just one of the many times I disagreed with him.
I disagreed with him about the brilliance of the chain/unchain system to control the party (see my signature for more details).
I disagreed with him on the merits of the armor system in DOS 2.
I disagreed with him about a day/night cycle being superfluous and a low priority for immersion
I disagreed with him about randomly generated loot being better than unique handìplaced items in DOS 1 and 2.

This is just going to add to that pile.
I wonder if even this time the epilogue is going to be the same: with Larian sticking to their guns and then coming back two years later saying "Boy, we were wrong and that feature surely sucked, but what's done is done".

And to be clear, no, I'm not happy nor satisfied with "leaving it to mods", because while having a theoretical limit of six can easily be scaled back and rebalanced for a smaller party or even a solo game (as, you know, the previous BG games did) the opposite is not true: a game tuned around a max of four characters is going to feel TRIVIALLY easy played with six.



Yeh I have been accompanying that thread as well, hopefully they will take all this feedback into consideration, specially with this intended companion lock on Act 2 and on, I don't know how would the system work with mods if the story is getting affected by that, even if they left the option in the system, there are limitations to what can be done. I wish I had recorded when I summoned Connor the zombie and he started playing chase with Gale and Shadowheart for a solid 3 minutes to corroborate how bad the movement is currently, on that note.
Posted By: kanisatha Re: Party Size Discussion - 25/10/20 11:50 PM
Originally Posted by KillerRabbit
I played with a 6 party mod and it worked great right up until the point it failed to launch the grove party. The game is already set up to accommodate 6 party members.

There were some things that would need to fixed

-- party management. A couple of times my toons did a little dance trying to find where to stand
- the default party formation was the bowling pin one
- party inventory, with six people the items got so small I had a hard time seeing them
- minor graphic glitch during conversations where the extra two party members merge into another NPC

But I got what I wanted, more banters / conversations and it felt a bit more like Baldur's Gate.

This is very encouraging.
Posted By: ChickenInSpace Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 02:21 AM
6 is preferred, 5 is OK. 4 is too low and too constrictive for the Baldur's Gate feel and play.

As it stands now, my fears that this is DOS3 seem to be accurate.

Also, stop merging DOS mechanics with 5th ed. You're just doing yourself a disservice by saying you're going to do a 5th ed game and then just break mechanics from DnD.
Posted By: ChickenInSpace Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 02:30 AM
Encouraging, sure. But not good, really.

Just making the game for six, heck even five, would be very encouraging and make this game great again.

As it stands this, plus the divinity arrows, divinity barrels, divinity skills on weapons, and divinity surfaces is a dealbreaker. I won't enjoy the game and am not inclined to buy it.

I wanted the advertised 5th ed experience. Not a DOS3 with DnD flavors.
Posted By: KillerRabbit Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 02:59 AM
Anyone can try for themselves -- I found Norbyte's Divinity engine export tool on github.

Make a new PC, get to the first autosave (don't know why it needs to be an autosave and not a regular one), close the game, load the export tool, find and load the autosave, scroll down to line 841. Change the party size value from 4 to 8. Save the autosave file and see if you prefer running a game with 4, 6 or 5 members. You will get pops telling you the save has been modified but it worked for me right up until the point of starting the "we saved the grove" party. Your mileage and all that smile

For me the battles were more fun and ended sooner because the larger party could take out large numbers of enemies without using barrelmancy.
Posted By: Clawfoot Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 05:29 AM
Originally Posted by ChickenInSpace


As it stands this, plus the divinity arrows, divinity barrels, divinity skills on weapons, and divinity surfaces is a dealbreaker. I won't enjoy the game and am not inclined to buy it.

I wanted the advertised 5th ed experience. Not a DOS3 with DnD flavors.


Unfortunately, DOS3 is what we're getting. I think DOS was a pair of crap RPGs that catered to the lowest common denominator that thinks it's awesome that everything is weird and silly and meme-filled, and when it was announced that Larian would do BG3, I was immediately concerned that it would just be more of the same. I gave them the benefit of the doubt, but my fears came true: this game really is just Divinity 3 with different mathematics under the hood, and I don't think they intend to change that. It'll remain what we see now in EA, just with bugfixes coming up. The spirit and soul of Baldur's Gate is gone, because Larian never intended to carry that torch, they just wanted to boost the sales of their new RPG and chose to hijack a beloved franchise to accomplish it. This game has everything that was bad about DOS and little of what was great about BG.

Just look at the trash-tier writing. If this game had been a movie, it would be laughed out of the insdustry. The acting is so painfully awful and the story itself is like something written by a 14 year old who just wants to cram as much superficial epicness into it as possible with no sense whatsoever of taste or pacing. Nothing is believable, nothing is immersive, nothing is grounded in realism. It's just all a bunch of the most low-hanging fruit of RPG clichés. Every character over-acts to extreme degrees, every NPC is a hamfisted stereotype, every area feels fake and videogamey, and there's just not a grain of organic quality to the product. It's one giant pile of campy bullshit concocted by people who can't write for shit and don't have the slightest interest in respecting the legacy of the franchise they hijacked. This is to D&D RPGs what McDonald's is to the restaurant industry.

The 4-man party size is just one of countless examples of what I mean. There's no ideological reason to stick with that. There's no sensible argument for it. Reducing party size from 6 to 4 does not improve gameplay, but it's what they had in DOS so it's what we'll get in BG3. That's the sum total of what it boils down to. That's how it was in DOS and so that's how it will be in BG3, because BG3 is really DOS3. It's awful for the game, but Larian never truly meant to make the next Baldur's Gate, they simply meant to make the next Divinity and rake in some extra money from calling it Baldur's Gate 3. It's pathetic and disappointing, but it's very obvious as well, and we saw it coming a mile off. Ever since the first preview, I knew this would be the case, and they did nothing to acknowledge the complaints that were raised at the time of how this game felt nothing whatsoever like BG.

This is not a good game. The writing is garbage, the mechanics are weak, the gameplay is boring, and they haven't even lived up to their own promise of respecting the D&D rules. There's a superficial likeness to the ruleset, but they've taken so many liberties with it that one cannot conclude anything other than the fact that they didn't really give a shit about D&D. Eating food for healing? Elemental surfaces? Unlimited consequence-free rests anywhere, anytime? Half the spells and abilities are different from their D&D counterparts, and the more I scratch the surface, the more I realize that they only did just exactly enough to be able to say that the game is even based on D&D at all. There's a few things that they might chance throughout EA in this regard, but a lot of it is clearly how they want the game to be. Don't expect much more than bugfixes. What you see is what you'll get.
Posted By: ChickenInSpace Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 08:18 AM
Originally Posted by Clawfoot
Originally Posted by ChickenInSpace


As it stands this, plus the divinity arrows, divinity barrels, divinity skills on weapons, and divinity surfaces is a dealbreaker. I won't enjoy the game and am not inclined to buy it.

I wanted the advertised 5th ed experience. Not a DOS3 with DnD flavors.


Unfortunately, DOS3 is what we're getting. I think DOS was a pair of crap RPGs that catered to the lowest common denominator that thinks it's awesome that everything is weird and silly and meme-filled, and when it was announced that Larian would do BG3, I was immediately concerned that it would just be more of the same. I gave them the benefit of the doubt, but my fears came true: this game really is just Divinity 3 with different mathematics under the hood, and I don't think they intend to change that. It'll remain what we see now in EA, just with bugfixes coming up. The spirit and soul of Baldur's Gate is gone, because Larian never intended to carry that torch, they just wanted to boost the sales of their new RPG and chose to hijack a beloved franchise to accomplish it. This game has everything that was bad about DOS and little of what was great about BG.

Just look at the trash-tier writing. If this game had been a movie, it would be laughed out of the insdustry. The acting is so painfully awful and the story itself is like something written by a 14 year old who just wants to cram as much superficial epicness into it as possible with no sense whatsoever of taste or pacing. Nothing is believable, nothing is immersive, nothing is grounded in realism. It's just all a bunch of the most low-hanging fruit of RPG clichés. Every character over-acts to extreme degrees, every NPC is a hamfisted stereotype, every area feels fake and videogamey, and there's just not a grain of organic quality to the product. It's one giant pile of campy bullshit concocted by people who can't write for shit and don't have the slightest interest in respecting the legacy of the franchise they hijacked. This is to D&D RPGs what McDonald's is to the restaurant industry.

The 4-man party size is just one of countless examples of what I mean. There's no ideological reason to stick with that. There's no sensible argument for it. Reducing party size from 6 to 4 does not improve gameplay, but it's what they had in DOS so it's what we'll get in BG3. That's the sum total of what it boils down to. That's how it was in DOS and so that's how it will be in BG3, because BG3 is really DOS3. It's awful for the game, but Larian never truly meant to make the next Baldur's Gate, they simply meant to make the next Divinity and rake in some extra money from calling it Baldur's Gate 3. It's pathetic and disappointing, but it's very obvious as well, and we saw it coming a mile off. Ever since the first preview, I knew this would be the case, and they did nothing to acknowledge the complaints that were raised at the time of how this game felt nothing whatsoever like BG.

This is not a good game. The writing is garbage, the mechanics are weak, the gameplay is boring, and they haven't even lived up to their own promise of respecting the D&D rules. There's a superficial likeness to the ruleset, but they've taken so many liberties with it that one cannot conclude anything other than the fact that they didn't really give a shit about D&D. Eating food for healing? Elemental surfaces? Unlimited consequence-free rests anywhere, anytime? Half the spells and abilities are different from their D&D counterparts, and the more I scratch the surface, the more I realize that they only did just exactly enough to be able to say that the game is even based on D&D at all. There's a few things that they might chance throughout EA in this regard, but a lot of it is clearly how they want the game to be. Don't expect much more than bugfixes. What you see is what you'll get.


I see that we're of the same mind here. Reading that they WotC turned down Oblivion in favor of Larian is gutting when I get to see what Larian is doing with the BG3 name (and by extension, legacy).

Larian can still turn this ship around, I think. There IS balance in the 5th ed rules. Just copy them - it's probably not overly hard when you've reached this far in development. You don't really have to deal with different power spikes for different classes either if the game ends up at (guesswork) 12-15th max level as early spikers mellow out and early weaksauce gain significant power later on.

Larian should really start to consider the possibility of a PR disaster from deviating this far from 5th ed rules and general Baldur's Gateness. I know there are many DnD-lovers out who are just assuming it's gonna be totally 5th ed and all the Baldur's Gate goodness. Disappointing these people (who are certainly not few) could tarnish the Larian name quite well.

One of the worst things is that purchasing the EA can make Larian feel validated in their decisions to disregard all DnD stuff in favor of DOS3. However, if they had not released an EA, we would not know the potential shipwreck this could be. Double edged sword galore.

Posted By: Firesnakearies Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 10:52 AM
It is no longer true that you need a balanced party of certain specific roles. I think it's been untrue for a good long while in D&D. It's just something that people believe. With good tactics that play to the strengths of the party you HAVE, you can do well in D&D (and in BG3) with virtually any party composition. Some parties may have to be more cunning, may take longer, may need to use more consumables, but I don't think any party will be completely un-viable to complete the content.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 11:54 AM
Any worry about "perfect balance" is worthless in the first place because this has never been a perfectly balanced system to begin with.
Any degree of intimate knowledge of the system can help an experienced player to break encounters in countless ways, and sometime breaking things is precisely part of the fun.
So when people act as worrywarts about how a change could "compromise the current balance" in a game that is still one year away from release and incredibly far away from being finalized in most of its aspects, they deserve to be mocked for it.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 26/10/20 06:42 PM
Aside for any personal preference, a sudden realization just hit me a couple of hours ago while checking the "six-men mod" (which is actually more a save edit than a proper mod).

Why is Larian NOT taking advantage of the fact that this is an Early Access build, precisely to give us an option at the beginning of a new game to pick between the "standard and supported" party of 4 and an "experimental and unstable" six characters mode"?
No rebalance or tweaking of any sort required. Just that, an experimental option.

That would give them a chance to see what people choose, what they tend to stick with, how much they enjoy it, etc. All through client-integrated telemetry.
Isn't that what a EA is supposed to be about? Or is it more that they just can't be bothered to try it regardless of what people want, at some point?
Posted By: Peranor Re: Party Size Discussion - 27/10/20 07:18 PM
Originally Posted by Tuco
Aside for any personal preference, a sudden realization just hit me a couple of hours ago while checking the "six-men mod" (which is actually more a save edit than a proper mod).

Why is Larian NOT taking advantage of the fact that this is an Early Access build, precisely to give us an option at the beginning of a new game to pick between the "standard and supported" party of 4 and an "experimental and unstable" six characters mode"?
No rebalance or tweaking of any sort required. Just that, an experimental option.

That would give them a chance to see what people choose, what they tend to stick with, how much they enjoy it, etc. All through client-integrated telemetry.
Isn't that what a EA is supposed to be about? Or is it more that they just can't be bothered to try it regardless of what people want, at some point?



I'm starting to wonder that myself. When they announced BG3 for EA I though Larian did that because they genuinely wanted player feedback abut game mechanics, rules interpretation and impelentation and stuff like that. But it now seems that they just wanted people in the EA to test out pure technical issues.
Posted By: Serpentear Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 12:13 AM
Just meet in the middle and have 5 characters.
Posted By: Fikoley Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 01:54 AM
I always have found 6 character so much chaos and confusion and don't understand why people are nursing about rules that much. In my pretty party design, i ll create a frontline warrior paladinlike, a healer wizard enchanter or cleric, a rogue of course in different shapeways and a guy with very devourer destruction skills. But 4 character is very limited in a rpg fantasy world ı can see that. 5 is the best in my opinion, you can add whatever you want far from any limitation, and no such chaos as 6.
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 01:59 AM
Originally Posted by Fikoley
I always have found 6 character so much chaos and confusion and don't understand why people are nursing about rules that much. In my pretty party design, i ll create a frontline warrior paladinlike, a healer wizard enchanter or cleric, a rogue of course in different shapeways and a guy with very devourer destruction skills. But 4 character is very limited in a rpg fantasy world ı can see that. 5 is the best in my opinion, you can add whatever you want far from any limitation, and no such chaos as 6.

Seems quite the arbitrary line to draw in the sand.

Still, I'd be fine with five as a lukewarm compromise.
Six is still the superior option by a landslide. Not to mention it makes party formation symmetric (which totally counts) and it's the only option among the three that implicitly allow the other two to exist without any particular issue.
Posted By: rodeolifant Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 06:54 AM
Yeah.. I am undecided. My gut says "six", or at least five. because I like my cleric, but I also like my Druid.(*) In a four man team, there is little room for overlap (although two battlemasters tear through a horde of goblins like butter), and you"ll rarely see the interaction between the two.

With five, one can have the balanced four man party, and then add someone when the situation calls for it, without having to kick my best friends out.

(*)Eh.. Halsin will be on my team right? Come on, big buff custom model Elf.. The guy looks like Orion from Warhammer. No way you're just letting him provide counsel and health potions? Right?
Posted By: Warlord999 Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 07:56 AM
4 is really enough (fighter, two damage dealers and a healer), 6 is already a clutter, means that developers need to have 50% more enemies in every battle making battles longer and screen more cluttered.

Maybe 5 would be a compromise, but 6 party members is an outdated game mechanic already.
Posted By: rodeolifant Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 08:34 AM
Hmmm. What's the origin roster?
Wyll, Gale, Lae'Zel, Shadowheart, Astarion.. I'd say five is a perfect compromise. You can bring the whole gang playing as one of these or bench one if you bring Tav.

I'd bench Wyll. Warlocks, I just don't get them.
Posted By: Maximuuus Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 08:55 AM
Originally Posted by Warlord999
4 is really enough (fighter, two damage dealers and a healer), 6 is already a clutter, means that developers need to have 50% more enemies in every battle making battles longer and screen more cluttered.

Maybe 5 would be a compromise, but 6 party members is an outdated game mechanic already.


LOL let's say it to Owlcat, Inxile and Obsidian (ok, 5 in POE2, but it was 6 in POE1 5 years ago)
Posted By: Tuco Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 10:23 AM
Based Temple of Elemental Evil (so far the best implementation of D&D turn-based combat in a videogame) had a party of 5 user-generated characters that could expand up to 8 (with enough charisma) by hiring NPCs across the adventure.
It was glorious.

"Six is outdated" is one of these baseless claims that came out of nowhere.

Then again, as I said several times across the half dozen of threads on this same topic, before even beginning to discuss any party expansion Larian should be in desperate need to address their atrocious control scheme and throw the goddamn chain/unchain system in the gutter.

Posted By: mr_planescapist Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 10:31 AM
ROFL. Everyone is dancing around the problem.
In BG3 theres what 6 maybe 7 playable NPCs?????? Versus 15 in BG2 plus tons of modded NPCs.
Theres your answer why its a 4 character party game.
Frankly, Im surprised it isn't a 3 character max party.

Cherry on top is, you will NEVER get modded extra playable NPCs, unless Larian makes more. Thanks in part to cinematic dialogues.
Posted By: AnonySimon Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 03:35 PM
I want it to be a 6 party game. If you feel like having 6 is too much to handle, you could always just choose not to adventure with the other two members. Nobody is forcing you to travel with a full adventuring party.
Posted By: mrfuji3 Re: Party Size Discussion - 28/10/20 04:20 PM
Originally Posted by Warlord999
4 is really enough (fighter, two damage dealers and a healer), 6 is already a clutter, means that developers need to have 50% more enemies in every battle making battles longer and screen more cluttered.

Larian could make enemies deal more damage instead. This wouldn't make the fights last longer. Also see the end of my post re: individual exp auto-balancing encounters.
Originally Posted by rodeolifant
Hmmm. What's the origin roster?
Wyll, Gale, Lae'Zel, Shadowheart, Astarion.. I'd say five is a perfect compromise. You can bring the whole gang playing as one of these or bench one if you bring Tav.

I mean, how will this argument work when we have 8+ companions: then we should have a party size of 9? XD
Originally Posted by AnonySimon
I want it to be a 6 party game. If you feel like having 6 is too much to handle, you could always just choose not to adventure with the other two members. Nobody is forcing you to travel with a full adventuring party.

In order for this to happen, Larian should implement individual exp. They balance encounters for 4-5 PCs. If you take 6, fi