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I've written about this in various threads, but haven't seen this addressed in its own thread, so I wanted to make one. Many people are trying to figure out how to make using a long rest feel more meaningful, but also don't want to have the game decide on their behalf when they are allowed to take one. I think the best answer would be for Larian to make a decent number of encounters time sensitive, so that the story options available to the character change if the player chooses to use a long rest in the middle of what should be considered an emergency.

Currently, the fact that players enter every encounter in the best possible condition reduces the need for strategy, and makes many encounters too easy. This change would provide incentive to sometimes push your characters past their comfort zone.

One example could be *spoilers* with Auntie Ethel. If you talk with Auntie Ethel and Mayrina in the cottage, but choose to take a long rest after you speak with them, Mayrina can no longer be rescued, as Auntie Ethel has already sent her away to one of the other Hags in her coven. Therefore, once the Auntie Ethel encounter has been triggered, you must defeat Auntie Ethel before taking a long rest, or you lose the ability to rescue Mayrina. The player must ration their resources through the different layers of Auntie Ethel's hideout, or they will suffer the story consequences that accompany their decision to take their sweet time while on a rescue mission. Perhaps dialogue would be added to the initial conversation with Auntie Ethel, so that first time players are given a hint that this is a time sensitive encounter.

This approach preserves player choice, where for example, players become too injured after fighting Auntie Ethel's servants, and therefore decide it would be better not to chance the Auntie Ethel fight without recovering first, even if it means they can't save Mayrina, at least at this point in time. It also increases the value players will place on their abilities, and increases the value of using strategy while in combat.

This Auntie Ethel idea is based on how I actually played it my first time running the campaign, because I thought it would be time sensitive. I fought the redcaps, mind controlled servants, and Auntie Ethel, all in one go at lvl 3, because I thought taking a rest would harm Mayrina, and I have to say it was both difficult and incredibly fulfilling. I was pretty disappointed when I found out on subsequent runs that I could have rested/ignored the situation with little consequence.

Currently, I often find myself indifferent to most consequences I suffer from fights, due to the knowledge that my characters will be completely restored as soon as the fight ends. As long as my characters have at least 1 health after each fight, it makes no difference how much damage they took, or how many abilities/spells they used, etc. But in a time sensitive encounter, I might need to go through more than one fight before resting, so I actually care not only about surviving the current fight, but that my characters stay relatively healthy by the end so that they aren't forced to rest after.

The introduction of more time sensitive encounters would make using a long rest a meaningful choice, without creating hard limitations on when players are allowed to rest.

And of course, there should also be many encounters that are not time sensitive, but a nice balance between the two would make the rest mechanics feel more fulfilling.

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Edit:

I am adding a bit of clarifying information to reduce some misunderstandings around my suggestion.

When I refer to "time sensitive encounters", I mean that the encounter's circumstances can be effected by the number of times you use a long rest after it is "triggered." Players decide how much time has passed, not the game. This means that players could spend 100+ hours of real time playing the game, without moving an encounter forward in time, so long as they don't have their characters take a long rest. Therefore, there is no rush created in real life by making an encounter time sensitive, and all players could still take as much time as they want fully exploring each encounter, including leaving the encounter and coming back without repercussion, provided long rests are not used.

I think time should only become a factor once players have "triggered" an encounter, in that players have made a choice that has either caused, or made them aware of, an imminent danger. For gameplay/story purposes, it makes more sense to assume that the events don't transpire until the players discover them. But once that discovery has been made, the event is in motion, and should be treated as such. If time stands still even when the player is encountering something that should be urgent, then the game loses the ability to ever create urgency, hurting both gameplay and story.

I am not advocating for the passage of time to progress storylines where the danger merely involves a future threat, even if time could be considered a factor for when that threat may arise.

For example, when the goblins are trying to find the grove, the amount of time it could take is highly variable, the danger is not imminent, and therefore the main quests would not progress on their own/be time sensitive. However, if you inform Minthara of the Druid Grove's location, the goblins should not be willing to wait more than, say, two long rests (2 nights) until they move to attack the grove. Your character's actions took a future threat, and caused it to become imminent.

This gives weight to player choice, without causing the world to move on without the player's involvement. Players would therefore still be free to choose their own order for which encounters they wish to experience first, because time does not impact the story without the player's input.

Last edited by Ferros; 19/03/21 12:07 AM.
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I was going to write a long thing agreeing with you point-by-point, but "+1" will do the job. Very well stated.

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Haha thanks, hopefully Larian sees and will consider it, I think this would do a good job of addressing people's Long Rest concerns without offending those who like the current implementation.

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Originally Posted by Ferros
Currently, I often find myself indifferent to most consequences I suffer from fights, due to the knowledge that my characters will be completely restored as soon as the fight ends. As long as my characters have at least 1 health after each fight, it makes no difference how much damage they took, or how many abilities/spells they used, etc. But in a time sensitive encounter, I might need to go through more than one fight before resting, so I actually care not only about surviving the current fight, but that my characters stay relatively healthy by the end so that they aren't forced to rest after.

The introduction of more time sensitive encounters would make using a long rest a meaningful choice, without creating hard limitations on when players are allowed to rest.
D&D 5e is understood to be balanced around multiple encounters per adventuring day. Some mix of ~1-3 big battles and ~1-4 smaller battles with short rests interspersed, plus possible traps or environmental puzzles which further tax the party's resources. A party is not expected to nova all their most powerful abilities in any single battle; the challenge ratings of combats and the balance between classes are calculated with this assumption in mind.
If this guideline is not followed, then yes we result in @Ferros's finding that the consequences of any fight are irrelevant.

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Thanks, honestly even just a +1 helps. Looking through the forums, it seems like the Threads that get promoted are those that illicit controversy, like arguments around 5e rule implementation and such.

That's natural, as people are inclined to respond to each other to argue their point, pushing the thread to the top. But that also means that novel ideas that would be largely supported and could improve the game don't receive as much attention. Since people don't feel the need to respond to "protect their position", there is a reduced likelihood that developers will see the Thread, and they are more likely to miss out on some great ideas that would be widely well received.

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This is something i liked in kingdom come deliverance. I remember how impressed i was when i thought i just sleep to heal myself before riding with the others to solve a certain quest and when i woke up i realized they did not wait for me. Even the quest log was mocking me. The quest was still doable, i had to ride to the quest location alone and meet with the others there. They did comment on my delay which was crazy fun. I did not reload just accepted that i was lazy. laugh From there though i was more careful with sleeping and the game got much more interesting. Its probably not everyone’s cup of tea but i like it when time matters but at the same time the system is not frustratingly punishing but leads to interesting scenarios.
Regarding long rest spam i agree, knowing you can do it any time breaks immersion for me, takes away that precious resource management aspect of the ruleset and changes the mindset you are going into any fight with. I hope there will be eventually some options to tweak this in the final game.

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I played a game recently where you have the opportunity to investigate a murder. Every time you sleep without having solved it, another NPC gets killed. Initially, they are fairly inconsequential (them dying feels bad, because may have spoken to them and now you let them down, but they aren't integral to the story), but eventually a vendor gets killed, which means they aren't around for you to buy things from.

It's not critical if you don't solve the case; there's very minimal mechanical impact to just walking away. But it's a nice way to add some pressure and make the world feel more alive.

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Freaking great idea! =)

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I agree and don't. Mostly agree. Auntie Ethel fight is really hard without a long rest. Tried it. It sucks.

However, the concept you have proposed makes sense. You shouldn't be able to trigger this type of event, rest 8 hours, come back at your leisure, etc. I'd rather get more options than be forced to long rest before every boss. SO anti-climactic.

My issue with resting, besides this, is it is tied to dialogue. So if I don't long rest frequently I miss character development. I also don't like when characters tell me they are tired when they have hardly done anything. We ran through town for 5 minutes. Guess we need to call it a day. All because someone wants to say something to me. That's dumb. I feel like I'm punished for playing smart and not resting a ton.

I also think that there needs to be overarching consequences. If you long rest, thus ending the day, too many times, the gobbos raid the grove and kill the tieflings, or the druids do and seal off the grove just before the gobbos arrive. This would not result in game over. It would just mean bye bye grove.

Also, there should be tadpole side effects to resting too much. The more you rest, THAT is what triggers thr dream guy/girl faster, and if you use Illithid powers, even faster.

This would REALLY cut down on players resting after every battle I would think.

Also, food is dumb. Should be a requirement to resting HP recovery, not used in battle. Who eats ribs in combat, let alone as a bonus action? This would also make resting more limited and food more important.

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I hate timed quests. It feels very cheap when a game out-of-the-blue makes a quest fail just because it was timed, and I didn't know it. I like to take my time exploring and not worry that quests will fail while I am doing so.

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Originally Posted by GM4Him
I agree and don't. Mostly agree. Auntie Ethel fight is really hard without a long rest. Tried it. It sucks.

However, the concept you have proposed makes sense. You shouldn't be able to trigger this type of event, rest 8 hours, come back at your leisure, etc. I'd rather get more options than be forced to long rest before every boss. SO anti-climactic.

My issue with resting, besides this, is it is tied to dialogue. So if I don't long rest frequently I miss character development. I also don't like when characters tell me they are tired when they have hardly done anything. We ran through town for 5 minutes. Guess we need to call it a day. All because someone wants to say something to me. That's dumb. I feel like I'm punished for playing smart and not resting a ton.

I also think that there needs to be overarching consequences. If you long rest, thus ending the day, too many times, the gobbos raid the grove and kill the tieflings, or the druids do and seal off the grove just before the gobbos arrive. This would not result in game over. It would just mean bye bye grove.

Also, there should be tadpole side effects to resting too much. The more you rest, THAT is what triggers thr dream guy/girl faster, and if you use Illithid powers, even faster.

This would REALLY cut down on players resting after every battle I would think.

Also, food is dumb. Should be a requirement to resting HP recovery, not used in battle. Who eats ribs in combat, let alone as a bonus action? This would also make resting more limited and food more important.


So in regard to the Auntie Ethel fight difficulty, one of the reasons I said Aunite Ethel "sent [Mayrina] away" instead of "killed her" is to make the story aspect less punitive, in case the player is unable to accomplish the whole adventure in one go. The time aspect should be used to add unique or positive story elements, without the player feeling like they HAVE to always accomplish the mission without taking a rest. There is some benefit if you do, but it doesn't change the overall course of your game. In this case, failing to rescue Mayrina in time might mean that you have the ability to save her later when encountering the Hag's coven, but perhaps now you'll be forced to also fight her newly born daughter, who has already been turned into a hag.

Major or extra powerful items should remain dependent on completing any version of the task, rather than completing the task "perfectly." The reward for completing the event in time could be minor items/inspiration, but most important is the story element making you feel like you accomplished something by deciding not to rest to full after each and every fight.

*Strategy Spoilers*
The Auntie Ethel encounter, fought my first time in one go, was certainly difficult because I didn't know what I was facing, and I kinda just walked into each part of the encounter. However, if you approach the encounter intelligently, it's actual not difficult to do it in one go. First, make sure you have defeated the redcaps before triggering the event, and are fully rested before entering the cottage. Then you trigger the event. Then you can sneak past the mind controlled servants, and break the door to her cellar below (sneak to it or while invisible) to activate her portal leading to outside the cottage. The rest of your party comes in through the portal and can pretty much defeat her in one turn with surprise.

This is the most extreme case, and it's very unlikely you'll figure out every one of those steps on your first run, but the degree of difficulty for the encounter is really determined by how much strategy you use. Making the event time sensitive is not the same as forcing characters to slog through each potential fight on their face. In fact very much the opposite, people have little reason to avoid face-pulling each encounter in the current setup, because there is no consequence to barely surviving a fight, whereas time sensitive events would incentivize you (not mandate you) to approach things strategically to avoid needlessly raising the difficulty.

The overarching story consequences you mentioned, while logical, would be more controversial, because they really would function as a hard cap on long rest use. If you have, say, 6 long rests before the druids close off the grove, then that means you need to focus on resolving that story first, in under 6 rests. If you play the game in a different order, then it will have a major impact on your game trajectory, in a punitive way.

And given how early we are in the story, I don't think it's fair for us to assume that what happens in the grove won't have a ripple effect on how the rest of our story plays out down the line. Each character we meet may show up in the future (or not be there), possibly helping us, inhibiting us, or connecting us to other important people. Those story consequences, and their impact on future story options/magic item availability are too forceful to still say players have meaningful choice. Not to mention there are a number of magic items we would lose access to as a result of this outcome already. When the choice is between "beneficial outcome" and "punishment", there really isn't a choice at all, it's a new story requirement.

That being said, I agree it would be good for Larian to reduce the importance of going to camp for companion dialogue, perhaps by allowing a larger portion of conversations to be had during the day, and only the most important/specific conversations requiring going to camp.

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Originally Posted by Icelyn
I hate timed quests. It feels very cheap when a game out-of-the-blue makes a quest fail just because it was timed, and I didn't know it. I like to take my time exploring and not worry that quests will fail while I am doing so.

This is why it should never be "out-of-the-blue", time should only be pertinent to encounters where it would make sense. For example, when a building is burning, why would it make sense for us to be able to ignore the situation for days, and then come back to see nothing has happened, despite the NPCs telling us they urgently need to rescue someone from the fire. How many days can this building be urgently burning down, lol?

Time being determined by use of our long rest, to be clear, not an actual gameplay timer.

On the other hand, it makes sense for many of the goblin events to be non-time sensitive, because while an attack may be coming for the grove in theory, it is more ambiguous how many days away that might really be, and so players can be be given leeway there. The right balance between time sensitive and non-sensitive is necessary for this work.

Also, it's very important that opting not to complete the encounter in time does not result in "failure." Rather, it should result in alternative story options, ex. "Mayrina was sent away" (leaving room for her to be rescued in a later encounter with the Hag coven), rather than "Mayrina was killed." Sure, there might be some benefit to one story choice over the other, but that's already the case with the various story options we have. So long as the difference isn't overly punitive, completing the event, even if not "in-time" would still result in "succeeding" in the quest, but just a different version of success.

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People often talk about not wanting to be punished by time sensitiviy, or not buying into urgency.
Allow me to point out a different perspective.

I have always hated it when games punish me *FOR BUYING INTO* the (false) sense of urgency.
Games often present a negative consequence for actually treating the supposed emergency, urgent thing, or time sensitive task as such.

Ive played games where doing the time sensitive emergency first gets you the bad ending, becasue you're supposed to ignore it and do literally everything else first to get the good ending.
I've played games where doing the urgen tasks first leaves you underpowerd, as in underleveled and undergeared, because the game expected you to earn xp, money, and loot doing random tasks with no urgency at all first. Yes this woman's husband was kidnapped and is going to be executed any second now, leaving a child fatherless, but you need to pick all these flowers and clear the rats out of the basement first because level scaling.

And I've played games, like Baldurs Gate 3, where I'm mechanically punished for buying into the false urgency by being underpowered relative to the people who don't buy into it, because they get to go in with all resources replenished while I don't. Someone who made reaching Halsin drastically easier (and completly broke the balance of this DnD based game, which relies on rests as a huge balancing factor) by long resting after every set of goblins shouldn't get the same result as me, who fought my way there in one game day. Strictly speaking you can, and I did on my first character, get to Halsin without fighting by making the goblins think you're an ally, but for the sake of discussion this is fighting through with the cannon urgency vs fighting through ignoring it. If I have a more difficult set of encounters, fighting these goblins while strategicly using and/or running out of spell slots and entering fights below max hp, by doing it in one day, and another player has a bunch of easy af encounters because they spent a whole week taking naps before they reached him, then my Halsin should be like "wow you were quick" and their Halsin should be dead already.

And lastly I've played games, *primarily* Baldurs Gate 3, where I'm cannonically punished for acting on the cannonical urgency, by all this missed companion dialogue I'm not getting because I don't sleep for 8 hours every 5 minutes. Absolutely attrocius.

If the story is going to present urgency, actually have it, or at the very least don't punish players for pretending it's real.

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Originally Posted by Ferros
This is why it should never be "out-of-the-blue", time should only be pertinent to encounters where it would make sense. For example, when a building is burning, why would it make sense for us to be able to ignore the situation for days, and then come back to see nothing has happened, despite the NPCs telling us they urgently need to rescue someone from the fire. How many days can this building be urgently burning down, lol?

Time being determined by use of our long rest, to be clear, not an actual gameplay timer.

On the other hand, it makes sense for many of the goblin events to be non-time sensitive, because while an attack may be coming for the grove in theory, it is more ambiguous how many days away that might really be, and so players can be be given leeway there. The right balance between time sensitive and non-sensitive is necessary for this work.

Also, it's very important that opting not to complete the encounter in time does not result in "failure." Rather, it should result in alternative story options, ex. "Mayrina was sent away" (leaving room for her to be rescued in a later encounter with the Hag coven), rather than "Mayrina was killed." Sure, there might be some benefit to one story choice over the other, but that's already the case with the various story options we have. So long as the difference isn't overly punitive, completing the event, even if not "in-time" would still result in "succeeding" in the quest, but just a different version of success.
I like quest results to be based on things such as dialogue choices not time.

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Originally Posted by Icelyn
I like quest results to be based on things such as dialogue choices not time.

I guess to each their own, probably not something that everyone will agree on. But at least on my end, I think the game is better when we have many kinds of choices, as a whole, rather than treating dialogue as the only, isolated opportunity for our characters to make choices. Confining choice to dialogue makes the world, and our dialogue choices, seem inauthentic and disconnected.

Again, if someone is trapped in a burning building, crying out for help, and I ignore the situation for two days, and come back to see nothing has changed, why should I ever bother to help? They aren't actually in danger, and this fire isn't doing what the NPCs told me it would in our dialogue. So why should I actually value dialogue choices at all, if the problems they describe don't actually exist unless I acknowledge them?

In fact, if the world only confronts you with problems when you have declared yourself ready, the best way to solve all the problems is to never be ready! To me, if the encounter itself involves an imminent danger (fire is currently burning down the building with NPCs trapped inside, the antagonist in front of us is actively threatening an NPC, etc), but the danger we know to be occurring at this specific moment never actually comes to pass, then it is completely world breaking, the NPCs are clueless, and there is nothing for us to solve because our best solution is just staying in camp.

A game that shows us an imminent danger, but then does not honor that, ensures that players no longer believe in whatever stakes the game is trying to convince us exist. And in a narrative driven story like BG3, that's a real problem.

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Originally Posted by Ferros
Originally Posted by Icelyn
I like quest results to be based on things such as dialogue choices not time.

I guess to each their own, probably not something that everyone will agree on. But at least on my end, I think the game is better when we have many kinds of choices, as a whole, rather than treating dialogue as the only, isolated opportunity for our characters to make choices. Confining choice to dialogue makes the world, and our dialogue choices, seem inauthentic and disconnected.

Again, if someone is trapped in a burning building, crying out for help, and I ignore the situation for two days, and come back to see nothing has changed, why should I ever bother to help? They aren't actually in danger, and this fire isn't doing what the NPCs told me it would in our dialogue. So why should I actually value dialogue choices at all, if the problems they describe don't actually exist unless I acknowledge them?

In fact, if the world only confronts you with problems when you have declared yourself ready, the best way to solve all the problems is to never be ready! To me, if the encounter itself involves an imminent danger (fire is currently burning down the building with NPCs trapped inside, the antagonist in front of us is actively threatening an NPC, etc), but the danger we know to be occurring at this specific moment never actually comes to pass, then it is completely world breaking, the NPCs are clueless, and there is nothing for us to solve because our best solution is just staying in camp.

A game that shows us a danger is imminent, but then does not honor that, ensures that players no longer believe in whatever stakes the game is trying to convince us exist. And in a narrative driven story like BG3, that's a real problem.

Currently, if you rest after reaching the inn, a flaming fist will take care of it alone.
Maybe it's not based on time (if you aren't near the inn will be burn for year) but in my opinion is the best solution and doesn't encourage metagame.
Still main quests shouldn't progress on their own.

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Originally Posted by Icelyn
Originally Posted by Ferros
This is why it should never be "out-of-the-blue", time should only be pertinent to encounters where it would make sense. For example, when a building is burning, why would it make sense for us to be able to ignore the situation for days, and then come back to see nothing has happened, despite the NPCs telling us they urgently need to rescue someone from the fire. How many days can this building be urgently burning down, lol?

Time being determined by use of our long rest, to be clear, not an actual gameplay timer.

On the other hand, it makes sense for many of the goblin events to be non-time sensitive, because while an attack may be coming for the grove in theory, it is more ambiguous how many days away that might really be, and so players can be be given leeway there. The right balance between time sensitive and non-sensitive is necessary for this work.

Also, it's very important that opting not to complete the encounter in time does not result in "failure." Rather, it should result in alternative story options, ex. "Mayrina was sent away" (leaving room for her to be rescued in a later encounter with the Hag coven), rather than "Mayrina was killed." Sure, there might be some benefit to one story choice over the other, but that's already the case with the various story options we have. So long as the difference isn't overly punitive, completing the event, even if not "in-time" would still result in "succeeding" in the quest, but just a different version of success.
I like quest results to be based on things such as dialogue choices not time.
And it would be based on dialogue choices.
You failed the quest because you made the dialogue choice "let's go take a long rest, camping for 8 hours, instead of solving this problem."

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Originally Posted by Rhobar121
Currently, if you rest after reaching the inn, a flaming fist will take care of it alone.
Maybe it's not based on time (if you aren't near the inn will be burn for year) but in my opinion is the best solution and doesn't encourage metagame.
Still main quests shouldn't progress on their own.

Right, and this is very similar to what I am advocating. We also see a time sensitive encounter very briefly in the Underdark. If we rest too many times after encountering the poisoned gnome, and don't heal her, she eventually dies. So Larian actually already knows how to do this, and I'm really just advocating for more of it, with added depth.

I think a lot of people have missed my clarification that when I refer to "time", I mean the number of days passed, as signified by our long rest use (players decide how much time has passed, not the game).

This means that players could spend 100+ hours of real time playing the game, without moving an encounter forward in time, so long as they don't have their characters take a long rest. Therefore, there is no rush created in real life by making an encounter time sensitive.

And again, I only think time should be a factor once players have "triggered" an encounter, in that players have made a choice that has either caused, or made them aware of, an imminent danger. For gameplay/story purposes, it makes more sense to assume that the events don't transpire until the players discover them. But once that discovery has been made, the event is in motion, and should be treated as such. If time stands still even when the player is encountering something that should be urgent, then the game loses the ability to ever create urgency, hurting both gameplay and story.

I am not advocating for the passage of time to progress storylines where the danger merely involves a future threat, even if time could be considered a factor for when that threat may arise. For example, when the goblins are trying to find the grove, the amount of time it could take is highly variable, the danger is not imminent, and therefore the main quests would not progress on their own/be time sensitive.

However, if you inform Minthara of the Druid Grove's location, the goblins should not be willing to wait more than, say, two long rests (2 nights) until they move to attack the grove. Your character's actions took a future threat, and caused it to become imminent.

This gives weight to player choice, without causing the world to move on without the player's involvement. Players would therefore still be free to choose their own order for which encounters they wish to experience first, because time does not become a factor without the player's input.

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One thing that I think Larian does right is not making time sensitive encounters a common occurrence. They have implemented it a little, for instance, if you take a long rest after killing all the goblin leaders, Halsin frees himself. Maybe they should slightly tweak the script so nobody gets the wrong idea, but I prefer the game this way. I like an adventure game to let me actually adventure. Look around, explore, etc. without being penalized for having a slow pace. This is especially true when I'm playing with a friend, last thing we need is time pressure and to be pushing each other to hurry up.


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