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Joined: Oct 2015
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Draba Offline OP
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Just finished my EE playthrough(tactician), wanted to share some thoughts. Some minor spoilers ahead.
Disclaimer: despite some shortcomings listed below I loved the game, wouldn't sink 80 hours into a bad one.

Combat is way too easy
The first 3 encounters are great, you have to put some thought in them(maybe specifically choose backgrounds with molotov/fireball to make it easier on yourself).
After you get your full 4 man team the challenge is mostly gone if you do not intentionally gimp yourself. Around lvl 6 I've decided to drop all charms and freezing touch/shocking touch/bitter cold because fighting training dummies isn't very fun(ice wall stays, it's too powerful but the most awesome spell in the game tied with earthquake :)).
Even without cc, dual wield warrior can just ultramurder all bosses in round 1 even without earthquake setup. Same with oath/soulsap/boint blank arrow spray ranger.
One boss that I feel had his toughness in the right place was the guardian, granted he probably wasn't meant to be killed without wand and at lvl13 I didn't have soulsap/decaying touch on anyone.

The story/banter annoyed me quite a bit
I enjoy a good rpg story as much as the next guy(Fallout 1-2 and Deus Ex 1 are all time greats, liked the atmosphere of Vampire Bloodlines).
I liked some of the humor in this one, the animal dialogues often cracked me up and the rps minigame options were things I could actually see myself saying for both sides. Still, the babble about souls, guardians, soulforges, source, souls, source, source, guardians, souls, source, source got annoying real fast. The last 2 hours contained roughly 1.9 hours of 'THIS IS IT GUARDIANS, FEEL THE GRANDEUR OF THIS MOMENT' and 0.1 of me running up to the bosses and bonking them in the face.
Special mention for Leandra and her D3 method of villainy( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcJ_XT3oWtY&feature=youtu.be&t=70 ), so friggin aggravating to just watch her run away ~5 different times.

Holy everloving hell are the puzzles tedious
I didn't mind some of them, for example the immaculate trial ones are quick and intuitive enough(and I wasn't as annoyed with puzzles yet).
I really hated the pixelscans, when before Mangoth a rat said something about buttons on the walls I knew I was in for an hour of aggravation, after 5 minutes just looked it up online.
By phantom forest I just wanted to see the ending, battles were a joke so sticked 100% fire/poison resist and burning immunity on everyone and simply plowed through traps and lava. Entering the source temple was still annoying as hell, for me the lowest point in the entire game was the kindergarten level match-the-shapes puzzle with the 3 camouflaged statues.

Please partake in the plumpest pro-du-ce e-ver PRO-DU-CED
DIE INFERNAL WENCH!!!!!!

Great crafting system, drops are really bad
Crafting is the best I've seen so far in any game, crafted items are great stopgaps and have their niche all game long. Early game had a real blast making grenades/arrows and other associated doodads.
On the other hand drops are entirely useless. They are based on the level of the mob/area, that'll be 1-3 below your level and what you can get in a shop. Some slots are way too random: bracers/belts tend to have a million useless skill mods and in the entire game I've seen 2 weapons that were better than my crafted ones 2 levels lower than them, 1 of them being a unique.

Did they really just use Terry Pratchett's sourcery in an rpg? smile


Looking back I really liked the combat system. If this was a game along the lines of fallout tactics(minimal rp, focused on combat with gearing up between missions/encounters) I'd jump right back to try something different. There's no friggin way I'm going through Cyseal and the puzzles another time though smile

Mobs could use a hefty buff to hp(think x5-10), so anything caught in CC isn't automatically dead in 1 round. Another change I think would be nice is making BB/Will rolls every round(like with slipping) and upping the CD on low level CC spells. This way CC is still massively useful and not too random, plus a bit more meaningful choice if you can't try 5 times every round.

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i would really like to see a video of some of your battles that you claim to be too easy. b/c honestly i do not believe you. no offense meant, but i consider myself a decent player but i often get destroyed in some battles - some are easy, yes, but on average tactician mode is quite hard IMO


"I don't make games to make money, I make money to make games". (Swen Vincke)
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Draba Offline OP
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Got a few manual saves along the road, not big on making videos but if you name an encounter I can probably get to it within an hour and record it.

General early strategy is first round oilfire on mages to cut los, dual oath whoever and grenade/arrow as neccessary, round 2 start the murder.
A bit later icewall and smokescreen become available, icewall is especially ridiculous(blocks LoS and projectiles/pathing, can't be destroyed, freezes and creates ice surface if you drop it on them, looks cool as fk).
After master spells I was starting to rush, either earthquake(so fun visuals :))/rightclick or hail/meteor/storm/rain of arrows/murder.

Against organics: dual rain/teleport the missing ones into the puddles, archer lights it up with air on bow, apply poisoncloud/nailbomb and just space/reshock until they keel over. Not very efficient but the orc fights were so much fun smile

I'm a minmaxer at heart so I'll admit party is kinda out of whack:
- everyone is ~22 mainstat(that's needed for max damage on int/dex abilities, the 150% chance on battering ram isn't really that good but wanted to get it), rest is dumped into speed and con to hold starting ap(no glass cannon). As a result recovery ap is 12-14 on everyone with a max of 14-16.
- mages have ridiculous initiative(lore/hydro/geo opener hovering around 30-35), only lost the first round to the wolves south of cysael, to Mangoth because both leaders got stuck behind the wall at the start and some events that I'd guess are scripted(the highest initiative I've seen on an enemy is 31)
- setup is 2hander switched to dualwield warrior protagonist with 1 aero 1 scoundrel 1(2 with trait) leadership, bow ranger protagonist with 1 scoundrel 4(6) leadership, 2 custom henchman mages with 5hydro/5loremaster/4geo/1pyro/1aero/1witch and 5pyro/5aero/2witch/1geo/1hydro. Had some extra points so first mage got 5 geo(only good master is earthquake) and second 4 witch in the very end. Extra points all go into 2 armor(3 on warrior) and BB/will favoring bb. Everyone has bb on belt, the plan was to get 4 good stun immunity rings but they are rare as hell. Warrior is 6bb/6will, 100% all resist except tenebrium, armor hovers around 70% mitigation so can be brought up to 95+ with defensive/fortification/potion if needed(every 10 points above a level treshold give +5%).
If I accidentally get int on warrior/ranger gear the one holding it gets 1 witchcraft with oath.
If I was going for efficiency on a second playthrough I'd probably get 1 aero on ranger and 1 hydro on everyone, too. Teleport/wind of change are very good and regen can't fail/rain is cheap enough for 70% with 5 int. Would pump speed much sooner as first I didn't know that base proc chances are capped at 150%(earthquake 300%). Also, maybe zombie instead of shrug it off/leech since poison was a pain in the ass and resists are on belt/sarong/jewelry, used mass heal in fights less than 3 times total anyway.

Joined: Oct 2015
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I find most of the complaints about ease of combat, is player driven.. This is an rpg, and should be played as such..9/10 people claim, or suggest that the group be specc'd for combat, and only later, after you've filled your killing machine stat quota, THEN maybe worry about Barter, Lockpicking, Crafting, Charisma, etc..

I myself, right from the start, place points in the skills that round out my party, as they were designed..Wolgruff is a perfect example.. Most people whine about how pathetic he is.. Well.. He is a Thief.. Not a Nightblade/Assassin.. He has HALF of is ability points spread over 'Role-Play' skills..

Personally, i allocate points as they come, and keep my character growing.. If we place every point available into combat skills, abilties, traits, etc. ofcourse we are gods among men... Asking that the combat be more difficult, based on characters of these design, would make ANY RP impossible, as we would all HAVE to build warrior combatants. Ofcourse, thats not the whole point of an rpg... Then were into the action/adventure genre..

Other than some minor QoL suggestions, i wouldnt change a thing about D:OS/EE..

But thats just my 2 cents.. Ofcourse, having a mode specifically built for combat would allow for that, and keep the rpg.. So its really a great suggestion.. I too thoroughly enjoy the combat in this game.. Like you, i dont know how many more times i could stomach those intial 5 hours in Cyseal.. Talking, getting to know the npcs, lifting the fog of war, looting dozens of containers, picking up all the quests, etc.. Getting ready for that first push out to the western, undead forest.. I think ive done it about 10 times now (counting the characters ive decided not to keep), and it really is a LONG time before you get to see any action...

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Well, people might be more open to taking barter/charisma/lockpicking/pickpocketing if they were more useful.

You can win arguments by picking the best Charm/Intimidate/Reason option in dialogue and skipping the minigame. In the very, very, few cases where a key isn't nearby, you can smash things open without any penalty except maybe if a guard is close enough. In vanilla at least, the limits of what you could take with Pickpocketing were very low and even if you maxed it out, it only went up to 1000 value, which eliminated most things which were worth stealing anyway. Lucky Charm has an 8 percent chance of any item appearing at all, and that is at Rank SIX. The odds are highly against you that it won't be a very good item anyway.

It probably doesn't help that ability points start out scarce, and that it takes increasingly more points to increase the rank of the abilities. You never really get the feeling that you can just go and dump 10 ability points into lockpicking or barter to get them up to Rank 4.

Not to mention that while a lot of combat can be technically avoided, combat is the main source of XP, and you cannot complete the game by avoiding combat completely.


Last edited by Stabbey; 14/11/15 09:52 PM. Reason: keys
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Draba Offline OP
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Yep, I realize I'm playing like a munchkin and judge a full rpg based only on one of it's features.

In my defense I think the ruleset and the environment are mostly there to support the combat and are not very well suited for a storydriven game. For me the story certainly felt more like a necessary evil to get to my dessert. I think D:OS would truly shine if they stripped the classic rpg elements and focused heavily on combat, like the Icewind Dales for Baldur's Gates or Fallout Tactics for the original Fallouts.

I loved some rpgs for their atmosphere and story/character interactions, Fallout 2 sticks out in my memory. All the SPECIAL attributes, skills, traits, perks, reputation and past deeds unlocked alternative options/questlines that changed the world(like the New Reno mob wars or Broken Hills). You could actually go through with minimal combat and I did so multiple times. Planescape: Torment had a gripping atmosphere, same with Deus Ex. Hell, even played through the first 2 Max Payne games despite not liking the mechanics just for the story. I don't think story and feel is the area where D:OS can challenge the greats smile

Even if you take a roleplaying approach, there isn't much you can/need to do. Pet pal on a protagonist is a given and I got it, too. Other than that charisma can make dialog choices easier to win and pickpocket unlocks a few alternative ways to quests, that's it. Barter does very close to nothing and you can have +2 from gear/as much gold as you want without it. Even if you level them(and not just get 1 trait+panties+tooth jewelry for charisma/1-2 levels+gear for picpocket), that's 1/2 of skills gone on 1/4 of your party. Doesn't take much to make a monster anyway, get 1-1 in all magic schools and get freezing touch/rain/regen/bitter cold/shocking touch/oath/oil/spider/wildfire with a bit of int, good to go at level 1.

I'd like to emphasize I didn't write the original post to wave my dick around about how good I am at this game. It legitimately is that easy if you fudge around a bit with skills and test before really jumping in. For comparison Fallout Tactics was a very decent challenge in ironman mode. The new XCOM with Long War mod repeatedly murders me on brutal ironman, and some people just waltz through impossible, the highest difficulty.

Edit:
failed to mention that the environments are gorgeous, a bit relevant to the atmosphere part and credit really should go to the team that made them.

Last edited by Draba; 14/11/15 05:16 PM.
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Oh im not arguing with you by any means.. I too would very much enjoy a combat focused version of D:OS.. As long as the current one was left as is, or a separate option.. (and i didnt take your OP as braggin :)).

All the points you guys make are valild.. Some of the skills are not as useful, or unnecessary altogether.. I t hink they should be reworked.. Made into a valid skill.. As you mentioned Lockpicking can be completely bypassed with smashing, and infinitely repairing your weapon. The rock/paper/scissor mechanic is so awful i skip it altogether.. I REALLY HATE IT. Its got nothing to do with skill/Charisma, as its chance based (even though we've all figured out the pattern). But i still put a point or two into Char (it also affects buy/sell costs). I never noticed a problem with Pickpocket though.. I understood certain items just cant be taken, and i felt it was more realistic for that.. I cant just empty someones pockets completely.. Based on size/weight/value.. I chose which items i 'could' take, and/or which was most beneficial to me, and took the im descending order, until it was no longer possible.. Or only a single item. I havent tried it in EE yet though.. Bartering, i only use a single point or two, and keep a necklace or something. Ill never max it out tbh.. Unless im playing on normal, and want a straight up salesman/negotiator. Lucky Find sucks.. I +5 it in my last playthrough of the original, and i never got anything 'good' from it. All common items, or crafting mats..

In some games i like to role play my character.. Other times, ill min/max for efficient combat effectiveness..


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