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Originally Posted by Eli
Originally Posted by J747L

Interesting that chess is mentioned because when it comes to level scaling chess softwares actually revolve around it.


That's DIFFICULTY LEVEL, not level scaling.


The program is automatically adjusting to your play. And it's interesting how you conveniently snip out my posts to make it out of context.

Obviously you talked about a topic you knew nothing about and you're getting offended and going all out personal.

Chess programs operate in many interactive ways in addition to what I mentioned above where the program interactively scales it's play to match the player in real time we have:
Difficulty level (different handicaps)
permanent brain
hash tables
...

All operate at the same time to give the player a good experience with gameplay. It's the same with rpgs.

And you boil all these down to difficulty level (which is just a small portion of it)? The same way you boil down level scaling to such idiotic simplicity.

If you cannot discuss with meaningful valid points then I'm done with you.

Truth is Larian will never, ever implement any form of level scaling. So I know that all these are falling on deaf ears. Some don't care about Larian any more, let them do what they want but if you're going the route of stifling user's rights to express themselves then you're a lot sadder than I first thought.

Last edited by J747L; 17/06/15 08:29 PM.
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shape shifting hehe and "forms" (i.e. e.g. shadow form, ice form, undead/lich form which grant some bonus and/or malus stats/abilities)


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Levelscaling should never be used. Ever. Period.

If "limited" (say between 6-8) then you get 'What is the point' as indeed it does not alter your precieved (non-)issue of being too powerful at all, and there's really no reason not to have it fixed.
If going all out, well, we know how awesomely horrible that is, not?

And yes, getting pawned severly because you go in an overleved area is AWESOME, but taken away by cheap RPG's who just get things your level to pamper the player.

Having said that, improvement points:
* That quest with the severed head which pretty much required another quest to fail, which was a one-shot. There are no good alternatives.
* That one area where the badness of Combat XP was so well displayed. You know, the lava one where you could fight (easiest, +15K XP or so), sneak (hardest, nothing extra) or use fire-resistant items to walk on lava (relatively easy to do, but again, no XP). Geez, what path would I take???
* Akin to above point; less combat XP, more XP for doing objectives, progression and exploration instead.

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Scaling is a strange beast.

Levels and gear are meant to symbolize your character strength and progression (and give positive feedback to the player), but character strength runs counter to player skill. When a gamer obsessively checks everything to not miss anything, in the process he's lowering the difficulty of future encounters by stacking experience points and gear. If you love the game and explore all of it in one run, you are slightly ruining your experience aswell.

In past games, when you were stuck somewhere, you'd grind and come back more "powerful" (retry with easier settings). Nowadays, I believe developpers try to eliminate the "grind" (thankfully for me, as I don't like grinding).

I believe levelscaling is to adress an "equality of outcome" problem, to obtain some kind of uniformity of perceived difficulty experience. As opposed to an "equality of opportunity" approach, where a game is kinda difficult to begin with, and gamers just have to L2P or grind (which is usually not casual friendly).

So, levelscaling would maybe be one way to adress this "problem", and in the same brush would diminish (or twist) player's control over the game difficulty.

Levelscaling should be somehow tied to the perceived skill of the player for it to make sense (to me), but it almost never is.
I didn't play Skyrim. But I played FF8 (and even though I didn't like it, I completed it several times, go figure). This game had some very botched form of levelscaling.
From a naive point of view, there is no point in a levelling up system if it's to be a red queen race (I say naive because a levelling up system isn't just about game balance). Furthermore, such system is prone to abuse if not mastered. FF8 had deep flaws: it was very advantageous to stay low level in the late game, with the latest spells. In a sense, the levelscaling didn't change anything at all: underlevelling was the new overlevelling, and the balance was just more convoluted.

In my opinion, RPG developper should get rid of character levels and think the progression differently (in term of character abilities, or esthetics, or...), and reintroduce a level system only when it brings something. Because most of the time, it is just an artifact that is being brought out of habit and that brings its lot of problems while not being particulary significant in the first place (and worse: give headache to players who don't like having to theorycraft all this shit).

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I'm slightly ambivalent about level scaling: vanilla Oblivion was a good example of it done wrong, and even though I enjoyed my first play-through, it soon became a case of "seriously, what's the point?" as essentially the same old enemies and equipment were simply replaced visually, pretty much.

But then again, the assorted overhauls really showed the potential of Oblivion's engine by using much more fine-grained scaling: FCOM (a compilation of Oscuro's Overhaul, Martigen's Monster Mod, Fran's and other major overhauls) showed just how good it could be if done right. My personal opinion is that carefully considered level scaling is better than totally fixed levels. But I suspect it can be hard to get it right; then again, it's also hard to get fixed levels right, as the amount of discontent about Cyseal's environs shows.

I don't know what The Answer is, if there is one. Probably just to accept each game on its merits unless we feel like changing it. Which I'm not saying in any sort of finger-wagging way considering I'm as likely to complain about stuff as anyone else. And frequently do so.


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Originally Posted by Chrest
Scaling is a strange beast.

Levels and gear are meant to symbolize your character strength and progression (and give positive feedback to the player), but character strength runs counter to player skill. When a gamer obsessively checks everything to not miss anything, in the process he's lowering the difficulty of future encounters by stacking experience points and gear. If you love the game and explore all of it in one run, you are slightly ruining your experience aswell.

...

In my opinion, RPG developper should get rid of character levels and think the progression differently (in term of character abilities, or esthetics, or...), and reintroduce a level system only when it brings something. Because most of the time, it is just an artifact that is being brought out of habit and that brings its lot of problems while not being particulary significant in the first place (and worse: give headache to players who don't like having to theorycraft all this shit).


There's always going to be a huge issue with balancing side content vs. main content. People who complete side content should gain some sort of advantage, but it shouldn't trivialize the main story as it so often does. Level scaling smooths that out, but I'll admit it can take away from the sense that the side content actually made you more powerful.

A level-less RPG is an interesting concept, but hard to pull off without turning it into an action RPG that emphasizes reflexes and fine motor skills as opposed to tactics and strategy. A turn-based one where you merely obtain more skills (but don't increase your health or levels or anything like that) that allow you to do more complex maneuvers sounds hard to design, but not impossible. At a certain point, it'd be more of a puzzle game than an RPG, but I think the lines can blur as it is. If you're improving your stats as you progress, you basically have a leveling system without calling them levels. Levels exist largely as a convenience to generalize your and creatures' power.

I guess I find a complete loathing of level scaling in all forms to be kind of funny. I mean, RPGs are already prescaled (fixed levels) so that there's a perfect progression of enemies as it is. I just don't see post level scaling as that big of a step beyond creating a world already basically designed for you to win.

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Originally Posted by Baardvark
There's always going to be a huge issue with balancing side content vs. main content. People who complete side content should gain some sort of advantage, but it shouldn't trivialize the main story as it so often does.

...

A level-less RPG is an interesting concept, but hard to pull off without turning it into an action RPG that emphasizes reflexes and fine motor skills as opposed to tactics and strategy.

...

I guess I find a complete loathing of level scaling in all forms to be kind of funny.


I don't really hate level scaling, or level systems. I just find them more often than not badly designed, and slightly annoying.
There's many reasons to build a level system, and even a botched one fulfill reasonably some of these reasons while not being too much annoying. Overall, it's a financial plus, and I don't want developers to cater to my wishes only.

This being said, I agree that people who do side content should gain some advantage, but getting "buffed" (more level, more stats) is the laziest way, slightly harmful with that.

I have played World of Warcraft for instance, and I have often heared that Ulduar was a fine raid. It was content were difficulty was adjustable through special interaction with the game (no menu): you had to place yourself in a difficult situation on purpose. I like the idea that side content is simply difficult (and optional) content.

I don't play anymore but I've heard about aesthetic rewards. Instead of having more character statistics, the reward would be vanity items, or more control over the look of your character (which doesn't throw off the balance).

Control is, I believe, something not that hard to implement and a very valid "reward" for mastering and exploring a game.
"If you do more in the game, you can control more the look of certain places, and the look of your characters".
And it isn't limited to aesthetics.

Disgressing a little bit to get back at control: I quite disagree with your point on level-less RPGs that would easily emphasize too much in-combat mastery as opposed to pre-combat preparation, but I think I understand what you mean. It's just that it is actually unrelated to levels itself.
RPGs do have a and strategic "planning" component, and managing the stats (and growth) of your characters play into that. But that wouldn't disappear even if you got rid of levels: levels are just numbers that condense and symbolize the number of stats and abilities you have at some point in the story .

Those stats and abilities would still exist in a level-less RPG.
Considering this topic, I believe that what matters isn't the stat growth (since ennemies in RPGs tends to grow at the same relative rate as you?), but where and how they are attributed, how you balance your character.
And a reward could be more control over them (not more stats nor more abilities, but more control over how you can disperse them, or more ease to switch them).

Players like to control how they look, players like to have more control on their character stats (be less "all-rounded" and more "specialist" if the possibility of being an extreme specialist is being held off at the beginning), players like to respecialize characters (I think the demon in Divinity Original Sin allows for respec at some point?).

Having to grind a new character that you recruit is boring (which is why companions autolevel?), being blocked by a basic wolf that is currently just level 3+ compared to you (so you have ridiculous penalties to hit) isn't really exciting when you know you just butchered thousands of them with a different color sprite and 6 levels less. Wading through low level monsters in a low level zone is boring if the stat growth is surreal. Etc, etc...


Ultimately, I think a level system and even level scaling are good things (when done right). It's just that it is so often badly thought out (and often associated with bad behavior like using it as a reward for doing unfun things, badly designed game parts). It's just not something that is exciting most of the time, and it's not part of the good memories of the games I've played.


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The idea of non-xp reward sounds good.
Maby a barber shop who takes a special coins. Or an imp who rebuild for a coin a room in the Home stead for you. Also the respect reward sounds good for competitionist. Those players (myself included) wants to min max too. So a reward from side quests who allows do it has the value. The demon for free respect (no money and all skill books returned) who accept the special side quest coins again ?

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Add improving Enhanced ediiton:
Companions and adventureers for hire has their skill points not used. At least half of them. I understant that designers wants some focus for the character, but keep in mind that a skill/talent which doesnt fit my party sux. An example - I love Wolgraf but hate his escapist talent. Its so waste.

////
Or give me a side quest reward for his respect. Finishing his own quest perhaps?

Last edited by gGeo; 24/06/15 11:24 AM.
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"Chance to hit" needs to be looked at.

Baidotr with 12 perception, level 13 against Immaculate Assassin level 15: 4% chance to hit at 13m distance. 8% at 1m distance.


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What is your Dexterity? The max chance to hit is determined by Dexterity. Perception is used to reduce the range penalty of a ranged shot, but it cannot do more than reduce it completely, in which case the Dexterity is the deciding factor. Also, there is a large penalty of fighting someone above your level. Still your numbers don't look so good...

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Originally Posted by ivra
What is your Dexterity? The max chance to hit is determined by Dexterity. Perception is used to reduce the range penalty of a ranged shot, but it cannot do more than reduce it completely, in which case the Dexterity is the deciding factor. Also, there is a large penalty of fighting someone above your level. Still your numbers don't look so good...
It's also 12. I've put one point into Constitution +2 from gear, 2 into perception +4 and 3 in dexterity +2.

BTW: I've tried to do the fight that happens after you pick up the blood vial. Over after one(!) round. All my characters were either stunned or frozen. No fun won't buy again.

Last edited by Blablabla; 27/06/15 05:11 AM.
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That encounter is a very tough fight. I will suggest you try adventuring somewhere else first and then come back when you are level 15. Have you been to Hiberheim yet? You can easily gain a few level if you clear that map and come back to do the immaculate test. I think most of the enemies in Hiberheim are around level 12 so it should work well.

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one thing is mandatory: better mod tools. the ones available now are, well, disappointing.

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Originally Posted by ivra
That encounter is a very tough fight. I will suggest you try adventuring somewhere else first and then come back when you are level 15. Have you been to Hiberheim yet? You can easily gain a few level if you clear that map and come back to do the immaculate test. I think most of the enemies in Hiberheim are around level 12 so it should work well.
I have absolutely no idea how you could reach level 13 without doing Hiberheim. I could try to kill the level 14 spiders in the area where I am permanently slowed down but that is equally not fun. Or maybe I should just look up how to enter the wizards house in Hunter's edge again but I definitely can not defeat the Rat King. He is level 16 I think.

There are several options for me but not one of them is fun. As far as I know there is NO area in the game where enemies have MY level. Wait, the goblins in front of the tenebrium mine are still alive.

Last edited by Blablabla; 28/06/15 01:55 AM.
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Good luck with your goblin-hunt smile

As for XP, there is quite a bit of XP to be gained by winning any CIR-test available and by doing the quest in such a way that you get the most XPs out of them. The problem with CIRs is that it forces you to save and load a lot. When I created the walkthrough I did everything optimal to harvest as much XP as possible. I was level 12 when I did the trial, but I had not gone to Hiberheim yet. Only the SW part of the Luculla Forest map (sw of the river) was cleared, plus the cave until the lake where you can enter Hiberheim.

I guess this is a game where it matters to do the side quests and get as much XP out of them as possible.

As a side not I ended the game at level 23 (actually midway to level 24, but the only thing I hadn't killed where the people in Silverglen and Cyseal. I didn't bother killing them since it would not have been enough to reach level 24). So I think level 23 is the maximum level you can reach in this game.

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Being much older than the finger twitching first person kiddie set I knew at first play this game is designed to play not just to beat,
A large amount of games offered in the steam community
are nothing more than first person shooters expanded to play like like RPG's but in fact about 20 minutes (or Less)
a gamer can tell what they are.
I get many of the older games on steam because they were real games no just spending time killing monsters and gaining meaningless levels . Many have great graphics and other required stuff to attract the Kiddie set. That is where many of the companies are doing and I was afraid that the life span of good well designed games like what you produce was coming to an end.
However that was before playing Divinity II DC. It has many little surprises that make me think that at last there is a company that is not going to the sound of a different drum by designing games that demand playing not just
"beating" as the kiddies say.
I grant you that the graphics are not great but the game play incredible. You have a convert here. Keep up the good work



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I've said this before but I'm gonna say it again because it's important: DOSEE really NEEDS another big town in the late-game areas similar to Cyseal, otherwise the game feels too lopsided; it also NEEDS lizard-NPCs and Imp-NPCs and Elf-NPCs because these races are part of the franchise' core, and their absence in DOS sticks out like the clich馘 sore thumb.

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Originally Posted by Arsene Lupin
I've said this before but I'm gonna say it again because it's important: DOSEE really NEEDS another big town in the late-game areas similar to Cyseal, otherwise the game feels too lopsided; it also NEEDS lizard-NPCs and Imp-NPCs and Elf-NPCs because these races are part of the franchise' core, and their absence in DOS sticks out like the clich馘 sore thumb.


You just red my thoughts,probably you`re DragonKnight!


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Originally Posted by madgamer2xemmdt
designing games that demand playing not just "beating"
Man, this is perfect definition of Original Sin. It is so better then any previous Larian project. I think it is reached due to nearly perfect balance action and story text. Pillar of eternity is basically the same. In fact Pillar is bigger and better (on paper). But ... his gameplay is boring and without soul and passion compare to Original sin.

************
Back to topic: things made Enhanced Edition better.

- craft interface is something needs a lot of work.
Clear insight, overview easy to make things. Remove needs of checking external web page for crafting
Simply speaking:
--- > copy Witcher's 3 craft interface :-]

Last edited by gGeo; 02/07/15 11:43 AM.
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