Larian Banner
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 1 of 27 1 2 3 26 27
#679595 07/10/20 08:43 PM
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
apprentice
OP Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
Original Title: "My open letter to Larian on party size"


Good evening to all the staff currently working hard at Larian Studios.

I would like to take a few minutes of your time to talk about the current party size in game, my problems with it and also a possible solution for the future.

Note: this section got away from me and was far longer than expected. It is no essential and only helps to know my gaming history and mindset but can otherwise be skipped if you so choose.
But first I would like to give you a quick insight into my history and mindset in the hopes that it will give you a clearer idea of how I am approaching BG3.
I am 34 (born July of 1986) and I had lots of fun playing the original Baldur's Gate and to lesser extent Icewind Dale games as a child, I later played and absolutely adored Dragon Age: Origins, although coming to it with the mindset of it been the spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate I wish to this day that it had a six man party, to me that is it's only real flaw.
When I first heard that BG3 was going to be a reality I was fairly excited, and then upon hearing that it was going to be made by Larian I was apprehensive and then like many others when the first gameplay was shown I didn't like what I saw thinking it looked to much like Divinity: Original Sin, and was pretty much ready to write the game off as not for me as it was too different from what I was familiar with from the original BG games.
My experience with the D:OS games has been one of mostly confusion and I will be the first to admit that I have not given them a proper chance despite having pretty much every Divinity game in my Steam library. I put my bad experience down to not understanding the mechanics and systems of the games and never properly learning them. However since the announcement of BG3 I have gotten into the Fire Emblem games so now I'm more amenable to the idea of BG3 being a turn based game and the more I think about it lately the more I think it might actually be a good thing (in BG & BG2I remember leaving my mages in the back not contributing in most fights to conserve their spell slots, something that doesn't seem to be an issue in your game). And keeping up with the progression and development and have been slowly coming around to your vision of the game, I have bought the game and created a character but that is as far as I have gotten so far so I can come and write this. Character creation was much more straight forward and easier dew to me been familiar with the systems and mechanics of previous D&D titles and I'm looking forward to getting to grips with the game going forward.
I hope that this has helped some of you understand me a little better.


Now for the reason for this post: I would like to advocate for an option to have a six man party.
When forming a party of adventurers in games like this I like a well rounded and balanced party as I would imagine a great many players do as well. You need someone to tank and keep the enemies in place, you need a rouge or thief for picking locks and traps, and for obvious reasons a healer, leaving one slot available which I will most often fill with a spell caster and as such my party composition tends to look very much the same for every playthrough. Increasing the party limit to six not only brings it in line with the original games it also allows the player much more freedom, flexibility and creativity when creating a balanced party. It is my firm belief that a six man party is far superior over a four man party and gives much greater player agency.
And what may at first seem like a contradiction to you I am nod advocating for it to be the default way to play, I understand that you have a vision for the game and I will not argue that you are wrong in it because that is not something I believe in. A four man party or a six man party as a matter of preference and therefore is always the right way to go from each individuals perspective. I know there must be a great many people like me who much prefer a six man party and I would like to offer a suggestion on how you could possibly make both groups of players happy.
For early access and your balancing process keep working on it from the four man party perspective, make the game you have envisioned and focus all of your time up to full release on making it as good as you can, use the early access period to gather the data you need to make the game the way you envision it, make four man the default way to play.
and then when you are ready for full release have an option that can be turned on at the start of a campaign that allows for a six man party, don't spend your time around balancing this option, and when selecting this you can even have a warning that say's the game is not balanced around this size of party so it will probably be easier than intended and as such not compatible with achievements, all I'd like to request for this mode is that dialog sequences and cutscenes account for the increased party size. While mods will probably bring this option to us in the future it would be nice to have an officially supported option to do this implemented by the development staff so we would not have to worry about it not working properly or not playing well with cutscenes and dialog sequences, what I'm advocating for is you to give players the option of party size even if it's not properly balanced to allow for more choice and creativity when choosing who to bring along and so we can have a closer experience to the original games.

I would like to thank anyone who has taken the time to read my long somewhat rambling post and I would encourage anyone who has thoughts on my ideas and suggestions to add to a discussion of why you agree or disagree with me, I will be posting this on the Larian forums, Steam forums and GOG forums to try and get as much impute from as many players as possible to give Larian as much information on this subject as we can, then maybe if enough people want something like this or something similar Larian might consider its implantation when they have finished balancing the game for the full release. Your time is valuable and I thank you all for sharing a little of it with me today.

Last edited by Sadurian; 05/12/20 02:03 PM. Reason: Mod edit: title changed after post moved to Mega-thread section
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 52
journeyman
Offline
journeyman
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 52
+1

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 15
stranger
Offline
stranger
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 15
+1

The party size of 4 restricts the player so heavily that you more or less will end up with a cookie cutter lineup instead of being able to be more creative with it. Just because you want to cover your basics.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 33
apprentice
Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 33
By far the most common suggestion I'm seeing on these boards. Honestly I feel like the reasoning for this should be obvious and has been stated in every post that has suggested it. It has also been said repeatedly since the official announcement. Its not some out of left field suggestion it is an argument that has been repeated many many times and acknowledged by Swen in interview and even though I believe he said larger party size was something they were considering (I might be wrong there, but i believe it was something he mentioned after people kept saying to him about a larger party) it seems they didn't consider hard enough and I would hazard a guess that the reason the party size stayed at four was because a larger party meant more companions needed to be made and that drives up cost and dev time exponentially if you want the companions to be highly interactive with what's going on. Too many cRPG devs see larger parties as a cool extra that they can do if they have time to make it work after getting the core experience sorted. In fact it is a necessary part of the core experience when using a well defined class based system as the player needs to cover the basic roles and have a slot or two for the RP focused character, or interesting character that doesn't fit into a specific role particularly well (eg. with 4 slots it will never.... never be worth it to take a great old one warlock as their in PnP is essentially RP sloot, fun but not so good in a fight). The reason the 4 man party works in tabletop is because you have a DM to tailor the experience to suit your slightly off-kilter party composition, not to mention that most PnP is considerably lighter on combat than most cRPGs

Last edited by Malkie; 07/10/20 10:10 PM. Reason: Clarification
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 316
enthusiast
Offline
enthusiast
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 316
Originally Posted by YzzSC
+1

The party size of 4 restricts the player so heavily that you more or less will end up with a cookie cutter lineup instead of being able to be more creative with it. Just because you want to cover your basics.


+1

This. The only way for that not to happen right now, would be to constantly restricted the player from using certain characters for story reasons, which would be horrible...

Last edited by WarBaby2; 07/10/20 10:08 PM.
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 15
stranger
Offline
stranger
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 15
Originally Posted by Malkie
The reason the 4 man party works in tabletop is because you have a DM to tailor the experience to suit your slightly off-kilter party composition.


Or the DM just adds a NPC or two to help you out. Great way for the DM to interject themselves in the party banter laugh

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 33
apprentice
Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 33
At this point I honestly feel like one of these threads should be stickied so that people can just add their +1. Currently there are a ton of separate threads so its hard to see how much support this suggestion actually has.

As I said when i made a thread suggesting it though, to make it a 5 man party you would really need about twice as many companions as there currently is in game.

Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 8
E
stranger
Offline
stranger
E
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 8
I totally agree with that
even 5 Player Party would be good

4 Players is just lacking and locking us into specific roles

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 68
journeyman
Offline
journeyman
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 68
Gonna be the evil guy for this thread.

I like the 4 man party. The limitation makes you think of more creative solutions to problems and perhaps your own unique character. Want to fill that rogue role but like rangers too? Play an urban ranger. It's flavourful as well. Wizards can open locks too.

In battle, you have to use your classes to their full extent. No party member is just there as a skill monkey. Makes you chosen companions matter more since you really depend on them for success. The cleric is not a healbot, it is a Cleric with a capital C.

Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 6,863
veteran
Offline
veteran
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 6,863
I would definitely like at least 5 party members.

However, Larian seems to believe that more than four people would be too cumbersome and create excessively long combat. I unfortunately don't think they're going to budge on that one. But you can try.

Joined: May 2014
Posts: 10
E
stranger
Offline
stranger
E
Joined: May 2014
Posts: 10
+1
It'd be good to have options besides Tank, Mage, Rogue, Healer.
5 or 6 man allows for bards, rangers, etc.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
apprentice
OP Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
Originally Posted by Malkie
At this point I honestly feel like one of these threads should be stickied so that people can just add their +1. Currently there are a ton of separate threads so its hard to see how much support this suggestion actually has.

As I said when i made a thread suggesting it though, to make it a 5 man party you would really need about twice as many companions as there currently is in game.

I've been seeing threads like this since the game was first announced and the party size was confirmed, but not many, if any explained the writers view point on why it was something they wanted, so I have tried to approach this in a constructive manor, explain why I think the larger party can be a benefit and offer up a solution, As for adding more companions I know more are planned but I'm not sure how many more are coming.
Originally Posted by eidopans
I totally agree with that
even 5 Player Party would be good

4 Players is just lacking and locking us into specific roles

While five people in the party would be better than four I still believe that six is kind of the perfect number. My favourite memory from BG1 is the end dungeon on the way to fight Saravok, I had 2 front line fighters and a cleric holding the line against a hoard of enemies while my rouge archer and two mages attacked from behind the front line, it felt so epic to set up a formation and use tactics to face of against overwhelming odds and I just don't see that sort of scenario happening with only four party members.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 2
stranger
Offline
stranger
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 2
I really really want this suggestion to go through. I want a party of 1 Tank (fighter or paladin), 1 cleric, 1 charisma caster(bard, sorc or warlock), 1 int caster, 1 rogue and 1 fun character (druid, barb, ranger).

4 just has too many limitation and I feel like I am forced into tank, healer caster and a rogue that kind of has to be arcane trickster at that point.This leaves no room for fun party compositions.

Please please please reconsider the 4 man limit.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 316
enthusiast
Offline
enthusiast
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 316
Originally Posted by Stabbey
I would definitely like at least 5 party members.

However, Larian seems to believe that more than four people would be too cumbersome and create excessively long combat. I unfortunately don't think they're going to budge on that one. But you can try.



It's round based combat, so against more then say, 5 enemies, combat will be cumbersome/long no matter what...

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
apprentice
OP Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
Originally Posted by Skarpharald
Gonna be the evil guy for this thread.

I like the 4 man party. The limitation makes you think of more creative solutions to problems and perhaps your own unique character. Want to fill that rogue role but like rangers too? Play an urban ranger. It's flavourful as well. Wizards can open locks too.

In battle, you have to use your classes to their full extent. No party member is just there as a skill monkey. Makes you chosen companions matter more since you really depend on them for success. The cleric is not a healbot, it is a Cleric with a capital C.

Please do, the more oppions the better, just because I prefer a six man party I'm not arrogant enough to say it's the only way to play. I appreciate that a lot of people like the challenge and limits that a reduced party size can bring, solo BG runs have been a thing since it was first released. For those that like doing solo runs that function ability will be built into the game by default since you won't have to recute anyone to your party if you so choose and player like you who like a four player party are covered as well, but people like me who like a bigger party size will be at the mercy of mods and modders and there ability to keep it up to date and compatible with elements of the game that may conflict with it, whereas something built into the game by Larian themselves will bee much more reliable.
Originally Posted by Stabbey
I would definitely like at least 5 party members.

However, Larian seems to believe that more than four people would be too cumbersome and create excessively long combat. I unfortunately don't think they're going to budge on that one. But you can try.

I do want them to make the game the way that they want to and balance it around their vision, all I ask is that they give players the option even if it comes with warnings that it will reduce difficulty and potentially break the ballance of the game and therefore achievements will be disabled.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 1
stranger
Offline
stranger
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 1
+1 !

I wanna be able to play with most of my friends, especially if DM mode becomes a thing.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
apprentice
OP Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
Originally Posted by vberge
I really really want this suggestion to go through. I want a party of 1 Tank (fighter or paladin), 1 cleric, 1 charisma caster(bard, sorc or warlock), 1 int caster, 1 rogue and 1 fun character (druid, barb, ranger).

4 just has too many limitation and I feel like I am forced into tank, healer caster and a rogue that kind of has to be arcane trickster at that point.This leaves no room for fun party compositions.

Please please please reconsider the 4 man limit.

Agreed, while not exactly comparable in Dragon Age: Origins I often found myself wanting to take a couple of extra companions along with me and feeling pigeonholed into taking certain party members along rather than playing with the team I want to take.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 61
journeyman
Offline
journeyman
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 61
+1

I do understand this is not possible right now, espeially given there are only 5 companions available in single-player mode at the moment. But I do hope that as Larian adds more companions to the roster, the party size in later EA versions (or even just the completed game) can be bumped up to 5 or 6 members. Even if this is not implemented in multi-player mode, or even if it is left as an option that can be chosen at the start of the campaign.

Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
apprentice
OP Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
Edit: double post, removed.

Last edited by Sir Sparhawk; 07/10/20 11:05 PM.
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
apprentice
OP Offline
apprentice
Joined: Oct 2020
Posts: 25
Originally Posted by Gabriel Farishta
+1

I do understand this is not possible right now, espeially given there are only 5 companions available in single-player mode at the moment. But I do hope that as Larian adds more companions to the roster, the party size in later EA versions (or even just the completed game) can be bumped up to 5 or 6 members. Even if this is not implemented in multi-player mode, or even if it is left as an option that can be chosen at the start of the campaign.

With the player created character and the five companions they actually have a full party of six ready to go, but I would prefer that they focus on finishing and balancing the game for now and add the option closer to a full release.

Page 1 of 27 1 2 3 26 27

Link Copied to Clipboard
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5