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I'm not referring to the bug which requires you to double-click while opening a lock. Nor am I referring to the treasure table issue which has Lockpicks almost never appear in random loot, although both of these should be fixed. (And Arhu and/or the Arrow Seller should sell Lockpicks.)

I'm referring to a balancing issue currently in the Beta.

Outside of Cyseal, there are essentially no locked chests or doors which haven't got a key for them somewhere. There's always a key around, which makes Lockpicking worthless.

Simply hiding the keys from the all-revealing gaze of the Alt button isn't good enough, the problem is that all chests are always open or have keys in the first place. Just hiding them will work for a playthrough or two until a walkthrough comes out or players find the hiding places themselves, and then lockpicking will become pretty much worthless again.

Suggestion: More chests should be locked, without existing keys.

If players want to get at the stuff inside and there's no key, they should pick the lock, or smash it open with a weapon or spell.

That brings me to another issue. Opening a chest with a lockpick consumes the lockpick. Smashing it open with a weapon damages the weapon. Opening it up with a spell costs nothing but time. As noted elsewhere, that's unbalanced.


Suggestion: Either A) Chests opened by lockpicking (and maybe key as well) should get an additional roll on the treasure table, probably using the lock difficulty as a modifier. Chests smashed open by magic and weapons remain the same.

Or B) Chests opened by smashing them have less items, items inside could start with lower durability, etc. Some kind of thing that makes brute-force opening less appealing.

The additional roll of items represents stuff that was not destroyed by opening the chest violently. Many games which let you use force to open locked chests have similar punishment mechanics to encourage lockpicking.

"Hold on, that's not fair, why should Lockpicking give more stuff? I want to play the character I want."

The reason why is because to lockpick, you need to spend Ability points into Lockpicking. Unlike weapons and magic, the Lockpicking ability has no other applications, it's exclusively for opening locks.

If a player is going to spend precious Ability points into Lockpicking, it has to be worthwhile for reasons other than cosmetic roleplaying.

Last edited by Stabbey; 19/04/14 04:56 PM. Reason: alterate option
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I totally agree, and I'd go even further: opening chests with violent means should damage the items inside.

Of course, chests with quest related items should remain as they are, with a key hidden somewhere in the nearby or kept by some NPC. Lockpicking should be useful, not bmandatory.

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Sounds good!

Instead of 'lockpicking gives bonus items', which may indeed sound unfair, most games use the more aptly 'smashing open a container may give less loot (some may break)'.

Which essentialy is the same, but sounds less like lockpicking just creates items out of thin air smashing does not (there's already luck for that ;))

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Originally Posted by Hassat Hunter
Sounds good!

Instead of 'lockpicking gives bonus items', which may indeed sound unfair, most games use the more aptly 'smashing open a container may give less loot (some may break)'.

Which essentialy is the same, but sounds less like lockpicking just creates items out of thin air smashing does not (there's already luck for that ;))


That would also be a good alternative. I do note though, that items are generated upon mouse over, before opening. I've even seen "Lucky Find" appear over a chest which was still locked.

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Yeah, technically it would be the same (bonus item generated), just the way you tell it to your players is different, which is important. More so than the technical side most will see.

Yup, although I *thin* items get generated in chests when first interacted with (which locked includes), not mouse-overed (don't quote me on this though, just the feeling I have). Or potentially when damaged too, for chests opened by traps without the player reaching it yet...

It's just like how 'locked' or 'unlocked' appears over characters while walking to the door instead of at the door.

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You're right, I just checked, and it is interaction, not mouse-over, although that doesn't really affect my point much..

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- I suggested somewhere else that lockpicking may also be used to disarm traps, especially pressure plates based one. Maybe also mines, I never really tried anything else other than launching something at them or shooting them from a distance, so I'm not sure whether there already are other ways of disabling mines.
This way, one could be compelled to always bring a lockpicking character, giving more utility to the ability, regardless of how many times you ran through the game.
I'd even go as far as pairing a Disarm check with Loremaster ( some kind of included "trap knowledge" ). This way, while Lockpicking would cost you lockpicks when trying to pick a lock, Disarming a trap would bring the risk of setting off the trap should you not have invested enough points in both abilities. Also this way, traps would still be a threat.

- I agree that opening a chest with the key or with a lockpick shouldn't give advantages, but rather smashing it should yield less items/gold, and/or damaged gear. This way, you just don't want to smash the chest. I can't care less about having extra loots though, so if smashing it right here and now gives me correct item, this is the easier and quicker way.

- Overall I don't really see an issue with having a key for each lock, and knowing the location of every one of them. I mean, the vast majority of players are probably going to do only one playthrough anyway, so what's the harm ? If you can even power your way through the game during your third or fourth playthrough, by investing LP points into combat-related abilities, why not?
As it stands now ( or, well, disregarding the fact there are like 5 Lockpicks in the current world ), I see LP as one alternative to open various things when you don't find/don't want to look for the key.
Example, how can you open the doors on the fist floor of the tavern ? Where is the key ? Is it on one of the patrons or the barkeeper ? If yes you would need to invest in pickpocket to grab it.

Please note that I still believe that simply smashing or burning open a door or chest should give a slight handicap. Also, I thought the Open Lock spell only worked for magically locked door like the one in the barracks down by the port. Is that spell actually opening every physically locked containers? If yes, then it shouldn't and I suggest this is either non-intended or should be removed wink


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Originally Posted by Dr Koin

- Overall I don't really see an issue with having a key for each lock, and knowing the location of every one of them. I mean, the vast majority of players are probably going to do only one playthrough anyway, so what's the harm ?


Pay attention. The issue is that it makes Lockpicking a waste of Ability points if every single random chest is unlocked or has a key. If all Lockpicking is going to be is just a time-saver for finding a key, then it's better to just delete the Ability and have only a lockpick item (which comes in 5 qualities) required for use.

EDIT: I had a Rogue, and by the end of the beta, when I came across locked things, I was not thinking "If only I had more lockpicks I could lockpick this", I was thinking "why should I bother lockpicking this, when I'm sure the key must be around here somewhere."


Originally Posted by Dr Koin
Example, how can you open the doors on the fist floor of the tavern ? Where is the key ? Is it on one of the patrons or the barkeeper ? If yes you would need to invest in pickpocket to grab it.


Yes, there are a few places in Cyseal which have no key around and which require lockpicking. That's fine, but there's nothing outside of Cyseal. That's not fine.


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Also, I thought the Open Lock spell only worked for magically locked door like the one in the barracks down by the port. Is that spell actually opening every physically locked containers? If yes, then it shouldn't and I suggest this is either non-intended or should be removed wink


That spell only opens magic locks, and it is working as intended.

Last edited by Stabbey; 19/04/14 07:55 PM. Reason: personal experience
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Originally Posted by Stabbey
Pay attention. The issue is that it makes Lockpicking a waste of Ability points if every single random chest is unlocked or has a key. If all Lockpicking is going to be is just a time-saver for finding a key, then it's better to just delete the Ability and have only a lockpick item (which comes in 5 qualities) required for use.


It's not a waste when you can use it instead of having to find the key. Sometimes, as the tavern locked doors show, you can't acquire the key if you didn't have the right tools. Let's not forget that we haven't seen the later game stages, so who knows, maybe keys are very hard to come by.

I get that it's sad that the ability stands, right now, more as a "time saver" tool than a real one, which is why I suggested merging it with a potential disarm ability. Or get rid of the lockpicks system, and lock a looot of things, Baldur's game style. Or fallout style, lock things you can't unlock without undertaking some kind of quests or having to charm the person holding the key.

I was refering more to secondary playthroughs, though, where you know all the keys location and know that indeed, you can do without LP. The first run, you may still want some points in the ability just in case... The second, or even third, you will focus on boosting your character.

And last, it's nice to have the ability, at least for potential modding wink

(quote]Yes, there are a few places in Cyseal which have no key around and which require lockpicking. That's fine, but there's nothing outside of Cyseal. That's not fine.[/quote]

As mentionned, we don't know the full extent of the game yet, so this will have to stay on hold !

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That spell only opens magic locks, and it is working as intended.


Oh, alright. That's what I thought. Your original sentence made it confusing. You meant "destroying" with a spell rather than "opening" then ?


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Originally Posted by Dr Koin
It's not a waste when you can use it instead of having to find the key.


You really think so?

“I need to make a call, but I have lost my $500 cellphone. I’ll go buy a new $500 cellphone.”
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“Oops, after buying the new phone, I discovered that my old phone was on my dresser all along. Well, at least that wasn’t a waste because I was able to make that call!!!”

Ability points are a rare and finite resource. They have to be spent sparingly. Therefore, you should get value for these points. Because I have seen no use for lockpicking outside of Cyseal, Lockpicking right now needs more value.


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Sometimes, as the tavern locked doors show, you can't acquire the key if you didn't have the right tools. Let's not forget that we haven't seen the later game stages, so who knows, maybe keys are very hard to come by.


What kind of argument is that? “You can’t complain because maybe the issue will fix itself in the areas we haven’t seen.”

The beta is for getting feedback. This is feedback. I can only go by what we have seen. My default assumption is that the beta is representative of the full game.

My complaint ain’t all that complicated to solve. There are a bunch of chests around in combat encounters, and they are all unlocked. Lock some of them. There are a bunch of chests you have to dig up. They are all unlocked. Lock some of them. There are chests inside dungeons. They are all unlocked. Lock some of them.

Suddenly, Lockpicking becomes attractive to use, even in cases where there actually IS a key, because it is no longer a binary “unlocked/locked-with-key-nearby” situation. Because chests were ONLY locked if there was a key nearby, I learned that it was better to look than to lockpick. Introduce uncertainty by introducing some chests which are locked and amazingly, lockpicking no longer seems like a waste of ability points.

Not rocket science!

There's still the issue of "Wizard smash puny chest", but this thread has a couple suggestions for that too.

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Originally Posted by Stabbey

-snip-


I think the problem overall is that you're doing way too much theory-crafting and brainstorming while lacking all the data ( as in, the whole final game content ).
It's true that investing into lock-pick is just as costly as investing into Way of the XX. Yet more than a few of the abilities are useless if we reason this way :
- Crafting is useless, we can find weapons or if need really be, buy them.
- Repair is useless, merchants can repair.
- Loremaster is useless, merchants can identify.
- Pickpocket is useless, not having it won't prevent you from finishing the game.
- Sneaking is only half useful, because only a few select builds and situations require it.
- Telekinesis is useless I just need a str-based character in the party.
- Earth magic is useless because most enemies are zombies and immune to poison ( considering the beta is to be treated as the full game ).
- etc, etc

Most of those sentences are situational, I'll give that to you, but so is Lock-picking.

What I perfectly agree with is that more locked chests would help give the Lockpicking ability more love and utility. I still think it should do something else rather than just open locks, hence my proposition of Trap disarming, because, well, in the current state of the game, I'd just ignore locked chests if I couldn't open them anyway. No need for whatever's inside.

What I perfectly disagree with is the whole "theory-crafting" issue.
Ability points aren't that rare and precious that you won't be able to finish the game without resorting to carefully planned ability points distribution. Heck, even during the alpha stages where the game was harder it wasn't THAT important to theory-craft our points allocation. Heck bis, as I mentioned elsewhere, it IS possible to rank 5 your Way come level 6 thanks to Lone Wolf. As it turns out, the game is just plain too easy when you know what you're doing. Just disregard threads saying otherwise, they can't be serious!
D:OS isn't Path of Exile where a single point allocation mistake can prove to be a fatal error.
People want to invest into LP and not care about finding the keys, I don't see a problem with that. To each their own. I essentially agree that LP is not very worthy in its current state, albeit not completely useless. Still it's not the end of the world because suddenly you wasted precious points and it's "game over, man!" waiting around the corner, as you almost make it sounds like.


Or maybe they just want us, by design, to look for keys instead of picking locks, and the ability is only here for people failing at the game or hasty players...


Tl;Dr :
- I agree that LockPicking is weak because not really necessary in the current state of the beta,
- I disagree that putting points in LP is a total and complete waste even in the current state of the beta,
- I do not have an issue with LP ( and probably more abilities ) not being needed because you now know the keys locations in subsequent playthroughs ( if any! ),
- I concur that having a few more locked chests, as well as hiding the keys from the ALT view, would help give LockPicking a second wind ; and bashing open chests should damage whatever's inside and/or yield less loots.
- Lockpicks need some attention.


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There's a thin line between 'useful' and 'required', just as there is between 'useful' and 'useless'

I wouldn't want the dig-chests to be locked. While it makes sense (you lock it before you bury it right?) this isn't D&D where we expect everyone to have a rogue. Those chests already require a Perception investment, or otherwise a monetary investment in the map, there's no need to make it even more difficult to open them if you already need to allocate points or spend money to get them in the first place.
There are about 8 or so lockboxes in the graveyard, leading up to one chest which has the same loot as any other quest. Quite the dissapointment going through so many chests, looting so many keys. Something could be done with them.

I must not have found so many unlocked chests as you seem to have, I barely seen any. Most are, infact, already locked. But with the key nearby. Do you suggest then that the key goes away? Or did I miss the abundance of unlocked chests around?

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This may not be D&D, but it is a party-based game, and there will be henchmen and companions. I’m expecting (by process of elimination) that one of the next companions will be a Ranger. The game expects you to switch them out from time to time. It’s not entirely unreasonable to assume that along the way, someone you hire can find spare points to spend in Lockpicking.

I spotted a lot of the buried things (at least, most of the ones which have maps associated) through normal play on a Rogue who had 7 Perception – the starting 6, plus one from gear (so probably many of those things could be seen with 6 PER). I put no points into PER at all with that Rogue. That’s hardly a massive investment. Jahan starts with 6 PER. Slap a piece of +1 Perception gear onto Jahan and he can find the same stuff. I don’t think that a +1 PER piece of equipment is such a crippling burden that a lock is just going too far. Not to mention that the guy with 7 PER and the guy with Lockpick don’t need to be the same guy, and there are more ways to open a chest besides lockpicking.

West Cyseal has a bunch of combat encounters and houses which feature unlocked chests. Okay fine, that is the starter area needed to give players the resources to survive, so leave those unlocked. There are many places where chests could be locked. I think that if you can take on the Lighthouse Horror and the Tiny Twins at the Burial mounds, the training wheels can come off the bike and locked chests can start appearing.

Places which have unlocked chests: the lighthouse basement, the two chests outside the burial grounds, the one outside the Sparkmaster tunnel, two of the four Burial Mounds treasure chamber chests could be locked. Most of the chests in the Black Cove are unlocked – that’s a reasonably high-level area.

The biggest problem with the key-locked chests is not that they are key-locked, but that outside of Cyseal, 100% of locked chests have keys nearby to open them.

ACTUAL EXPERIENCE AND THOUGHTS WHEN PLAYING THE GAME FOLLOWS:
It became completely predictable very quickly, and because I KNEW there was a key around, I had no reason to bother with lockpicking. Every time I was right, and I found the key I needed nearby.

I’m not griping that I wasted points into Lockpick. I didn’t. I never bothered boosting it past the starting level of 1, and I never needed to.

That was my actual experience, so don’t just derisively throw up a hand and dismiss it as “theorycrafting”. It isn’t.

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The design of assigning point into Lockpicking = Meaningless.

The monster is not respawn. Unless we have spare teammate that have extra point to spent with.
Otherwise, JUST BLAST THROUGH ANYTHING.

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Originally Posted by Stabbey

ACTUAL EXPERIENCE AND THOUGHTS WHEN PLAYING THE GAME FOLLOWS:
It became completely predictable very quickly, and because I KNEW there was a key around, I had no reason to bother with lockpicking. Every time I was right, and I found the key I needed nearby.

I’m not griping that I wasted points into Lockpick. I didn’t. I never bothered boosting it past the starting level of 1, and I never needed to.


To be honest, nor did I. Or, well, I tried to amp it up a bit just in case, but seeing I wasn't getting nowhere with the ability, I stopped wasting points into it.
We only really miss the infamous tavern first floor rooms by not having lockpicking. Maybe also the Mayor's room in the back.
Every other locks we can open. Keys are always nearby. And easy to spot because of the ALT overlay. from the top of my head, only two keys are "some distance" from the chest they open : one in the Black Cove subsection with the levers puzzle, and the key for the chest behind the two guards at the lighthouse. Like, it's 10 meters away.

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That was my actual experience, so don’t just derisively throw up a hand and dismiss it as “theorycrafting”. It isn’t.


But what sparked my flame in the first place is precisely you mentioning the rarity and preciousness of ability points, right from the very first post. Isn't that the way to theorycrafting ? When you begin to consider where points should be allocated, and where they would be wasted ?
But anyway that's not important.

Again I agree that lockpicking is lacking some bang for its buck. I don't think that being able to entirely ignore it in later playthroughs is "bad design", though. That's what I was defending. I'd even say it's good design when an ability isn't mandatory to the game. The "bad design" is that it's not even desirable.

I think it's in FallOut 1 that Lockpicking isn't that necessary too, but I like the fact that it's a mandatory skill when you want to do a speedrun. I shall have to re-visit those speedruns, but I seem to remember a specific locked door. The key is given through the storyline or something, but with a high enough LP you can just dismiss the whole key acquisition and go right through it. This kind of design I like, and I'm a bit saddened that it seems impossible to pick the lock of Evelyn's house.
I can only hope the rest of the game will feature some situations where having lock-picking would really help and be part of a quest...


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Originally Posted by Dr Koin

But what sparked my flame in the first place is precisely you mentioning the rarity and preciousness of ability points, right from the very first post. Isn't that the way to theorycrafting ? When you begin to consider where points should be allocated, and where they would be wasted ?


No! That's called "planning your character".

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some way besides the point of OP but related to lockpicking
How to get into the smith's house "General store" in cyseal besides fighting the doors lvl 10? Lockpicking lvl 1 doesn't work also the spell doesn't work ?!? so how to get inside without charging in?
BTW: coming from the caves down up is doing it the wrong direction? the keys lie behind the doors ?!


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Originally Posted by Rainer
some way besides the point of OP but related to lockpicking
How to get into the smith's house "General store" in cyseal besides fighting the doors lvl 10? Lockpicking lvl 1 doesn't work also the spell doesn't work ?!? so how to get inside without charging in?
BTW: coming from the caves down up is doing it the wrong direction? the keys lie behind the doors ?!


We found out that throwing the pyramid over the door worked well, but it's probably not what was intended wink


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Originally Posted by Rainer
some way besides the point of OP but related to lockpicking
How to get into the smith's house "General store" in cyseal besides fighting the doors lvl 10? Lockpicking lvl 1 doesn't work also the spell doesn't work ?!? so how to get inside without charging in?
BTW: coming from the caves down up is doing it the wrong direction? the keys lie behind the doors ?!


Lockpicking is bugged, you need to double-click or else it won't work. The key inside is for a chest inside, there is no key for the upstairs doors.

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I would have to agree with your points that there isn't much usage of lock picking past the town, however the bigger problem is getting lock picks in the first place. As this needs to be fixed first otherwise LP will still be useless.

Currently in the last 2 play through I have done/currently doing I have had lock pick and aside from the few I found in the start I have never found ANY others. Both Arue and the Arrow sellers have never had any LP for me to buy either. Sadly I haven't been able to use my skill all that much.

It would be nice to see more LP being found throughout the world and able to purchase them for a cost. Couple this with the ability to use the skill outside of town and I think the skill credits for this could go a long way.

They should also make some quests that can only be done with LP kind of like with the Talking Pet Talent.


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