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I really enjoy the set-piece nature of most of the combats in this game. They feel strategic and fun to me. However, I agree that in the finished game every combat shouldn't feel like that. There should be some simple, easier ones mixed in.

Overall, I'd love for the game's structure to follow this from the 5E DMG

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The Adventuring Day

Assuming typical adventuring conditions and average luck, most adventuring parties can handle about six to eight medium or hard encounters in a day. If the adventure has more easy encounters, the adventurers can get through more. If it has more deadly encounters, they can handle fewer.

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Originally Posted by Isaac Springsong
I'm in favor of the following difficulty curve:

Easy - Don't really need to know the mechanics, point and click on enemies being roughly enough to complete the game.
Medium - Don't need to know the mechanics to start, but need to be able to pick up on the major ones throughout the initial tutorial and first Act (how Advantage works, how to get AC to stop attacks, using roughly the appropriate Spell for a given situation)
Hard - Need to know the Mechanics even at the start. Have to have mastered the combat mechanics (maximizing Action Economy, using synergy between party members skills/spells, minimizing enemy advantages by using Stealth and positioning).
Insane - Full Mastery of the mechanics and awareness of which ones are overpowered/abusable. Always using the exact right spell at the right time. Likely requires having played through the game on a lower difficulty to know enemy positions ahead of time, what spells and abilities the enemy will use, etc.

The problem is that most people expect an average difficulty of a game to be Medium. Larian has more or less said (from what others have posted and based on their DoS 2 EA) that they set their early access difficulty to be at roughly Hard. This is to get data on which fights might be easier or harder than intended.

Given Larian's intent for Early Access, I agree with the current difficulty curve. I have pretty close to a mastery of 5e mechanics, and while I have had some trouble due to Larian's changes to the rules, I haven't encountered a fight I thought was too difficult yet. If this was supposed to be Medium difficulty? Absolutely, too hard. But it's not, it's supposed to be a roughly Hard difficulty.


Agreed, it definitely feels like it's set to Hard. There was one encounter, the goblin checkpoint, I thought it would be an easy fight and didn't do any planning, just rushed in to kill them. 3 of my party members died. To a handful of drunk goblin mooks. I enjoy the tactical play, but fuck did I feel like trash after that. That said, I do think there are still a few fights that are undertuned (fighting the druids proved to be much easier than fighting the goblin warlord due to the terrain difference).

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Don't want to burst your bubble but I found most fights to be trivial, especially when using consumables. No boss has troubled me so far and if I use consumables victory is guaranteed. Killed multiple 120hp+ bosses no problems, even when making several mistakes and losing actions. The mentioned goblin fight was not hard at all, and can even be solved super quickly by nuking the chief gobbo or by using consumables on him.

I think the difficulty is on point. Feels about right for a d&d-like game. I like that many fights have a variety of tactical choices and environmental interaction that are NOT related to surfaces. Surfaces and stupid vines must go. Especially the vines. Surfaces and vines slow everything down without adding much at all. The core spells already have enough surface elements and offer a multitude of aoe effects be it lingering damage, cc, debuffs etc.

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Originally Posted by Gray Ghost
Originally Posted by Bray
The more I play this game I can see where OP is coming from.
Well I have not had trouble with any encounter before the druid village.
Some fights almost verge on impossible (depending on your party), if your do not abuse:

1) Jump disengage
2) Preposition your party before battle starts
3) Hiding
4) Ground effects
5) Statuses that render enemy useless - entangled, unconscious etc.
6) Line of sight


I encountered the githyanki patrol on my second playthrough with a more squishy party - I didnt even get a turn because everybody was dead before I could act.
I was able to do it, by positioning properly before the fight, and using hiding effectively but as OP said I just barely scrapped by (three characters still died).

I think the end note here is that encounters should be doable without me feel like I exploited the game to get past them.





Having read this I think I realized why I'm having trouble and so many other people aren't; I'm trying to play this game like it's normal D&D. I'm not picking up and throwing barrels, using jump a lot, stuff like that, whereas I feel like other people are using the game mechanics as given and are getting their heads around it faster.

+1000

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Why is everyone on this board a hardcore DnD player. You kind of need to think in a broader perspective here to appeal to all audiences. I think surfaces are great, it gives more depth and strategic options to the game, and balance could be solved by allowing a 5th level on first act. Alot of fights are hard, but thats what i love about the game.

The game isnt all about staying true to the rulebook you know. Its supposed to be an enjoyable game to all audiences. Not everyone knows the rulebook by heart.

I love the game btw, needs to be said - cause most of these posts are critique.

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hello i just got to the end of early access and i would like to say i overall didnt find combat difficult, except the minautores in the underdark that made me reload a few times since they yolojump and oneshot my ranged character every turn hehe

beside that i found combat to be fine overall, most fights are easy if you use the mechanics and/or set up an ambush, if you go head first in a poor position fights can get tricky but thats a part of the game i personnally enjoy

i just wish the enemy turns were faster on the large fights with a lot of enemy units (exemple when you invade the goblin camp)


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First couple of days on my first playthrough were miserable. I am very familiar with 3.5e but not at all familiar with 5e. Every fight had to be save scummed--not just beforehand, but during combat. It was frustrating, so I put the game down for a bit to see why I wasn't doing well. I spent a good couple of hours reading 5e rules and watching youtube and twitch and came back, and I'm not losing fights that often. However, the party resources required to get through them are much more costly than they should be. I can sometimes do two encounters per long rest, but I don't think I've hit 3 without taking one. 5e parties should be able to get through 6-8 encounters per long rest. When every fight is like a final chapter battle, your encounter design needs serious attention. More easy encounters, fewer that can wipe out the entire party with average luck. That's what D&D combat flow is, and has always been. Irritated that I had to go outside the game in order to learn how to play it. The importance of positioning and interactive objects needs to be in the tutorial. You need to explain advantage and disadvantage. Sneak attack has to light up only when it's actually possible. I shouldn't have to actually buy the 5e players handbook to know how to play your video game. I'm loving the story and the setting, though. I have all the 3.5 FR source books and this is great.

Last edited by Delaredia; 10/10/20 08:26 PM.
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Originally Posted by Danneuber
Why is everyone on this board a hardcore DnD player. You kind of need to think in a broader perspective here to appeal to all audiences. I think surfaces are great, it gives more depth and strategic options to the game, and balance could be solved by allowing a 5th level on first act. Alot of fights are hard, but thats what i love about the game.

The game isnt all about staying true to the rulebook you know. Its supposed to be an enjoyable game to all audiences. Not everyone knows the rulebook by heart.

I love the game btw, needs to be said - cause most of these posts are critique.

[i][/i][u][/u]

I certainly agree with some of what you said, but says who?

The game is supposed to be the successor to BG 1 and BG 2. Did you play those games? You could definitely beat it having no understanding of the underlying D&D mechanics (I certainly did when I was younger), but you are absolutely not going to be able to beat it on Hard mode. There is no reason BG 3 should be any different.

Not every game has to appeal to all audiences. This is one of them, in my opinion. What you are asking for is also functionally impossible, because a game that is universally enjoyable is a game with a lower difficulty (baring *significant* tweaking based on difficulty level) which will then make the game not enjoyable to others.

On balance, I would prefer BG 3 to stick to the spirit of BG 1 and BG 2. If you're on Hard mode, you have to know what you're doing.

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Originally Posted by Plunkett
The issue for me is that every fight is balanced like DOS2 in that every single one can potentially cause a TPK. This is fine in Divinity, but in 5e every fight does not need to be so difficult. If this was an actual campaign of this difficulty, then this DM would have no players. They need to take a long hard look at whoever is in charge of encounter balance and remind them that this is a DnD game not a divinity one. (No problem with DOS2, it’s maybe my favourite game of all time, but if I play BG3 it should play like a 5e game.)



This is really the heart of the issue for me. I was excited for this game because I thought it would be a fun multiplayer D&D experience. But with the way the game is currently built I would never want to play a campaign with friends because it's not a BG experience. It's a DOS2 experience with a BG3 wrapper. Which is fine, but it's not in the spirit of previous D&D games, which had the potential to be deadly, but combat didn't require exploiting every weapon at your disposal just to beat up a couple of dumb low level goblins.

I would never subject a group of friends to this game because it's just save-scumming and resting constantly.


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I have found both to be true, but learned a few things. Some fights, it's best not to stop and try to kill everyone. Just keep walking towards you goal and shoot/stab enemies along the way. The helm fight, the real goal is to get to that transponder thing, so if you walk there asap and avoid the large winged devil, it's reasonable to get there. Plus I learned befriending everyone you can along the way and have them join your team works really well. You have more fighters. Also use "hide" a fair amount. It let's you go some areas undetected until the last minute, then you can walk/shoot your way out. Another strategy I discovered is bows have the best power at medium range. I kept trying to sharp shoot them from afar, but the damage is a lot less. Anyway... I have noticed each battle has something about it that makes it easier if you look for the signs. Still... I do really like chosen difficulty levels like they have in most RPGs these days. I would have preferred those.

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I haven't played anything D&D 5e before, ever, and even BG2EE was quite some years ago (so my memory of it is not great). I don't think it was too hard? I mean, we're capped at level 4 currently, and I didn't manage to beat the Bulette (hehe have to laugh at that name everytime, because we call burger patties / "meatball" patties Bulette in Germany...) but otherwise, sure there were some fights I had to reload several times, but to me it feels like the current set difficulty should be standard/medium difficulty.

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Originally Posted by Skarpharald
Don't want to burst your bubble but I found most fights to be trivial, especially when using consumables. No boss has troubled me so far and if I use consumables victory is guaranteed. Killed multiple 120hp+ bosses no problems, even when making several mistakes and losing actions. The mentioned goblin fight was not hard at all, and can even be solved super quickly by nuking the chief gobbo or by using consumables on him.

I think the difficulty is on point. Feels about right for a d&d-like game. I like that many fights have a variety of tactical choices and environmental interaction that are NOT related to surfaces. Surfaces and stupid vines must go. Especially the vines. Surfaces and vines slow everything down without adding much at all. The core spells already have enough surface elements and offer a multitude of aoe effects be it lingering damage, cc, debuffs etc.


agreed. I didnt really have any troubles in the fights. They were not too hard. I only had to save scum a little when i aggro the entire gobling dungeon without halsin. Needed some attempts to get through it without a death.
There is basicly 1 rule wich you can abuse to win basicly every fight: Get up on something and block the passage with fire. End of story. You just won any fight, except if the enemy can overpower you in ranged DPR.

Yet still fights were often frustrating because of the advantage mechanic. No matter how easily you win, you can not one-shot 20 opponents. so they get to shoot back. And since no hitrolls are required in this game to deal lots of damage, you always take damage and run out of heals. So you have to go to camp quite often if you flat out aggro everything. But its still easily managable.

In the end it felt, that all the "3 dimensional mechanics" and "surface mechanics" dont make fights more creative, but more easy. Its a railroad. Get upstairs for advantage. Leave only 1 path up (e.g. by breaking ladders). Block that path with fire -> profit.
You can even cheese more, by destroying all paths up. You can always get down with featherfall and up with misty step. If you do that, the AI is gonna freak out and just go like "you only make it worse!!!!!" and does nothing at all.

Last edited by DuderusMcRuleric; 13/10/20 07:40 AM.
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Originally Posted by Plunkett
The issue for me is that every fight is balanced like DOS2 in that every single one can potentially cause a TPK. This is fine in Divinity, but in 5e every fight does not need to be so difficult. If this was an actual campaign of this difficulty, then this DM would have no players.


I would say that I completely disagree.

If the players do not feel there is risk, then it's a boring campaign. If the players feel they can just waltz into any fight and win them all or win most, then it's very poor DMing.

One of the things I loved about Divinity Original Sin was that you really had to THINK about what you were doing. It made me grateful for a turn based game, so that I could actually use some strategy (and kudos for the environmental effects).

So far, there have been a few fights where if we had not used stealth and planning, we would be dead. Very very exhilarating!!

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Originally Posted by Newtinmpls
Originally Posted by Plunkett
The issue for me is that every fight is balanced like DOS2 in that every single one can potentially cause a TPK. This is fine in Divinity, but in 5e every fight does not need to be so difficult. If this was an actual campaign of this difficulty, then this DM would have no players.


I would say that I completely disagree.

If the players do not feel there is risk, then it's a boring campaign. If the players feel they can just waltz into any fight and win them all or win most, then it's very poor DMing.

One of the things I loved about Divinity Original Sin was that you really had to THINK about what you were doing. It made me grateful for a turn based game, so that I could actually use some strategy (and kudos for the environmental effects).

So far, there have been a few fights where if we had not used stealth and planning, we would be dead. Very very exhilarating!!


I disagree with you here. I think that the current difficulty represents what would ultimately be the game's hard mode, purely because the level of skill combat calls for is simply too much to reasonably expect from a beginner at that point in the game. Part of that is because the game currently is not good at teaching players how to be good at it and the difficulty curve sucks, but also as someone who has moderate DM experience, I would save intense encounters like these for boss fights, not just random encounters. For a random, normal encounter the difficulty should be such that as long as the players are doing reaosnably well and playing reasonably intelligently they should be able to win. Not every fight should be a nailbiter.

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Originally Posted by Gray Ghost

Having read this I think I realized why I'm having trouble and so many other people aren't; I'm trying to play this game like it's normal D&D. I'm not picking up and throwing barrels, using jump a lot, stuff like that, whereas I feel like other people are using the game mechanics as given and are getting their heads around it faster.

This is a problem.

If constantly using the DOS legacy mechanics to get past encounters is the norm then the game is knee-capping it's most valuable asset: The fact that it's Dungeons & Dragons.

I'll be one of the first in line to purchase DOS3.

But I really hope BG3 continues to strive to be D&D.

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You shoud be avaible to do normal difficulty of game withotu preparations before fight. Just after starting fight in dialog.

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Yeah the game is all about exploiting the mechanics and using everything at your disposal in every fight. Issue is, the game never told you anything about the mechanics and how to use them most effectively, and it did not show you either. So you are either knowledgeable, have very good intuition or plain lucky that you used the right things at the right time.

For someone with no knowledge of either DoS, 5e D&D and that simply played BG1+2 on normal 20 years ago or when the Enhanced Editions came out, which I assume is the core audience for this game, then you are pretty much screwed and left alone. I fireballed my way through BG2 five times at least, and never made use of protective spells, never backstabbed, never used a bard's chant, never really used a skill in general. I just hacked and slashed and tied fireball to magic missiles. And I used timestop to let three explode at once. I daresay that is the average gamer experience of BG2. I never knew anything about the ruleset then, I just played it for the story and the background.

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