UI, Controls, QoL : Part 1
, Part 2
, Part 3
, Part 4
, Part 5
Roleplay, Story, Immersion : Part 1
, Part 2
, Part 3
Mechanisms : Part 1
, Part 2
, Part 3
, Part 4
CREATING AND UNDERSTANDING OUR CHARACTERS Information displayed on our character sheet. It is difficult to look at the list of proficiencies of a character.
At the moment, I can infer
who has what skills. But in order to do this, I basically have to go through a long list of numbers, one for each
of the possible skills, and find the numbers that are bigger than others. It is really not convenient. Reading "Arcana, +2, Investigation, +4, History, +2" isn't as straightforward as reading "Investigation" in a list of skill proficiencies.
The character sheet should have a section listing all the proficiencies of a character (skills, armours, weapons, Saving Throws), organised by type of proficiency, and listing them regardless of the reason why the character has them (background, race, class or feat). Once the character is created, what is important is to know what the character has, not how each skill was acquired during character creation.
Having the skills listed would be useful in order to be able to put the right companion to the right task. But it would also be cool for roleplay : skill-sets alone can tell a story and brush up a portrait. Many tags are duplicated.
Characters don't need to have some of their tags (e.g. High Elf) listed twice. Once is perfectly sufficient. Please, don't create redundant tags.
- Having the tags "Cleric", "Good Cleric" and "Cleric of Tyr" sounds just a tad bit repetitive.
It is sufficient to have the tags "Cleric" and "Deity : Tyr". My "Good" alignment can be deduced from "Deity : Tyr" (if a player chooses Tyr and doesn't want to be Good, they can simply abstain from selecting the dialogues options which portray a Good character). From this "Good" alignment and the "Cleric" tag, it is easily deduced that I am a "Good Cleric".
Also, I suggest elsewhere that other classes should select deities. The fact that I'm a "Cleric of Tyr" is readily deduced from having the tags "Cleric" and "Deity : Tyr". If I have the tags "Paladin" and "Deity : Tyr", then I'm a "Paladin of Tyr". Easy.
- Having the tags "High Half-Elf" and "Half-Elf" is clearly redundant, as the former implies the latter (and it's even more redundant when this pair of tag is duplicated, see the entry above).
The character sheet is for us players to understand our characters. If the dialogue code needs to run tests on our character sheet and you find it computationally more efficient to store some results instead recomputing the relevant information every time, please make this invisible to us. Choosing our skills. Balancing skills.
I feel Athletics and Acrobatics are currently not exactly the most useful or appealing choices.
The Charisma skills and some Wisdom skills (Perception, Insight, Animal Handling) seem to be the overwhelmingly most attractive skills so far, both from a roleplay perspective (talking your way into some events or through encounters, feeling what people don't say) and from a mechanical perspective (finding traps and secret doors). Some other knowledge checks, such as History, Religion, Arcana or Medicine provide very nice insights and dialogue options here and there.
But I don't know of good reasons to choose Athletics or Acrobatics (I obviously don't know all the mechanisms, especially those are are hidden in the background but not described in any tooltip). I was told Athletics is used for jumps, but I found it far from necessary to jump super far. Medicine should probably be an intelligence skills.
I might be completely missing something, but I think that Medicine should clearly be an Intelligence skill, not a Wisdom skill. It has a lot more to do with knowledge of how the body works than being attuned to your surroundings. And you are home-brewing 5E anyway (which the rulebook invites you to), so that's probably a change that can be done. Races. What's the deal with Drows ?
I have the greatest difficulty understanding what you're trying to do with Drows. Currently, they feel wrong in several ways.
- Why are Drows not a sub-race of Elves ?
That's how they're described in the lore. In terms of mechanisms, they have the usual +2 to Dexterity and +1 Elsewhere of elves, the Darkvision, the Fey ancestry, the weapons training. So ... why ?
- Why are there two Drow sub-races ?
I couldn't find any mechanical difference (Ability Scores, race abilities, proficiencies, etc). So ... why ?
If you are trying to get some sort of alignment tag for Drows, I feel that encoding this in the race is a poor idea. Just give us good dialogue options (see an earlier remark about freeing Lae'zel), so that we can roleplay a Drow through our words and actions. As for the deity, I list elsewhere the idea that all characters should be able to choose one.
- I don't understand what the Lolth-sworn Drows are supposed to be.
My understanding is that Drows that break from the cultural mould of Drow society (which exists beyond Menzoberranzan), including by no longer worshipping Lolth if they worshipped her before, do not instantly become of a different race.
- I don't understand what the Seldarine Drows are supposed to be.
I have never heard of those elsewhere. I cannot tell for sure, with the description given in the game for Seldarine Drows, whether it is implied that they are surfacers, followers of Vhaeraun, followers of Eilistraee, etc. All I understand is that they are "seeking allies" and aiming to "settle a conflict". I don't really understand the various Tiefling sub-races.
From a lore point of view, I'm not quite sure about viewing Tieflings as a race that has sub-races. More importantly, equating a sub-race with the Devil in your ancestry means it is currently impossible to have a PC whose Devil ancestor is any other than the 3 proposed, which is a bit sad for roleplay.
From a mechanical point of view, Asmodeus and Mephistopheles Tieflings differ by ... their starting cantrip. I don't know, it feels as if you could just make the starting cantrip a choice from a list and merge these Tieflings. I mean ... whatever. This just feels weird. I don't understand the difference between Cambion and Tiefling.
Gale explains that a Cambion is the child of a Devil and a Human. Which I thought would result in Tieflings.
MISCELLANEOUS Banter. Missing out on banter because the sound is tuned down.
Due to often having the camera far from the party, which is the only way that I find to do medium-fast travel, and the game's muting of all the sounds not in the camera's surroundings, I too often miss some banter. Which is sad. Banter is cool. Is banter only location-triggered ?
It seems that banter triggers only when the party enters certain zones (this is a bit weird and exploitable, but it's also very easy to refrain from doing in a real, non-playtesting playthrough). Shouldn't there also be a time-interval after which we should hear one ? Banter is cool. The more, the better. NPCs belongings. It should be possible to read books belonging to NPCs !
And perhaps ask them if we can borrow their book. I mean, just like the UI issue where opening a book in the inventory and closing it brings us back to the world, this really goes against us enjoying all the little details you have put in throughout the world. (I could use Invisibility, but I feel that's a lot of effort to read books. Maybe it's the intention. But I feel books should be easier to read.) Other things. Why can we not resurrect non-companion NPCs ?
Zevlor died defending the grove and I thought I'd just use a revivify scroll on him. But I couldn't. So I discovered that, story-wise, you have back-up options. Which is cool if we want to let (or have) someone dead, who was supposed to deliver important plot points.
This request is not a big deal, but it's a bit sad that the rules governing some aspects of the world one moment (namely, recently-dead people can be resurrected) don't apply the next, because you decided so. Un-announced changes of rules are always frustrating and immersion-breaking. To be more specific : resurrection is a thing in the Forgotten Realms lore, it's not just a quality-of-life feature that you made up for the players, and thus doesn't get immediately registered as a video game convention from the start. Flaming swords ... really ?
It's a bit ridiculous to be able to dip our swords in fire, without coating it in oil or something. It might be better to have bottles of oil, like there is for poison. Not a big deal, but still. Flaming swords carried on the back ... really ?
I don't think putting one's flaming sword on one's back is a very healthy practice. It's already ridiculous to dip our swords in fire. And that missing arrows of fire can still burn their target and nearby creatures. Carrying a burning weapon on our back is the next step. The greatest thing is when the fight is followed by a cinematic, where we have all the leisure to witness the ridicule of the situation. This is clearly not a major issue. I'd rather have the writing and the narrative mechanisms be better and not pull me out of the story so often. I suppose I can file this flaming sword on the back as video game convention. But I also suppose it wouldn't be too difficult to stop the inflamed condition of weapons whenever the weapon is stored. We shouldn't be able to Examine creatures.
We shouldn't know about the level, race, and HP of everyone. It feels like we are tabletop players fighting with the Monster Manual open in front of us. It also feels like we are playing BG3 : Play-Testing Edition, which it totally is, so hopefully this feature is just temporary. We probably shouldn't know how many HP enemies have left.
A health bar, which would show us only the relative health, would allow us to know who is near death, wounded or has full life, without letting us know exactly how many Magic Missiles are needed to guarantee a kill.
It would be great to at least have the option to hide the exact amount of HP of enemies, as part of the difficulty-increasing options (and this one would also be roleplay-enhancing). It is not necessary for half the world to be level 3.
Supposedly, adventuring is a big deal. We can start the game with the background of a Soldier, who may have fought a war or defended caravans, and we'd still be level 1. It feels weird to see every other creature we meet be a level 3 creature. Just because we are level 3 doesn't mean that all enemies, have to be level 3. The correlation between the levels and HP of creatures is ... interesting.
I have seen level 1 Mind Flayers with 71 HP and Cambions with 82 HP. The ones I'm a bit jealous about are the Human thralls or dead adventurers with 24 HP. I don't know what class they have, but they have really good Hit Dice. I have also seen some level 3 goblins with 13 to 16 HP. They are a bit ridiculous, given that level 1 goblins have 8 to 12 HP.
And I noticed that Volo was a level 3 Bard with 6 HP. Can you make sure that we get the proper d8 HD if we create a Bard PC ? Reactions of companions and other NPCs. Companions at camp should not attack my Spider (or other Ranger's companion).
They seem to have an attitude problem. It's not very nice of them. When I cast a non-damaging spell, people should not complain.
Spells like Cloud can be used defensively. It would be great if my companions didn't ask if we're in the same team.
It would also be nice if Aradin didn't pick up a fight with me for no reason after I saved his skin at the gate. Ok, maybe I got him wet, I can't remember all the details. But that was to make 2-3 goblins fall prone when I iced the surface. Understanding some particular events or things. Who did Raphael talk to exactly ?
Did he talk to each of us separately ? If not, how come I only see the PC in the dinner room illusion scene ? Can he create multiple illusions and talk to each of us separately, in such a way that we don't hear the conversation he has with the others and they don't hear the one he has with our PC ? The others sound like they've all talked to him separately. I don't understand this scene. What do the characters know about each other exactly ?
Using only information available to the characters, in my first playthrough, I'm really not sure what I was supposed to know about Astarion. First, he tells me, right after meeting Raphael, about having a master and he mentions me being a warlock, a fact I certainly didn't tell him ! Later, when I meet the Gur hunter, he is tense, but I cannot direct the conversation toward what he is hiding from me. Finally, Lae'zel mentioned his master ... All of this occurred before the scene where he tries to drink my blood and is revealed to be a vampire spawn. Is that an EA bug in the permutations and triggers ? Or am I not understanding things ? When do the goblins turn hostile to me ?
In my first playthrough, I let the guards at the door of the goblin fortress know that I'm a True Soul. Then I attacked and I'm pretty sure I didn't see any goblin beat the drums. (I was so fearing someone would beat the drums.) When I reached the room of priestess Gut, they were hostiles and waiting for me. I don't understand Wyll.
He wants to sneak in and chop off the heads of the goblin leadership, but he disapproves if I want to save Sazza's life and perhaps free her so she can lead me straight to her camp ? Does he want me to kill my way through the whole goblin camp and call that sneaking in ? Or does he want me to find my own ways to sneak in ? Is he just a not-quite-brilliant-mastermind who doesn't see much further than his personal feud with the goblins ? I'm not too sure, I'd bet it's that, though I haven't played with him much. Aradin's "Form a line".
It sounds as if he heard this phrase in a film
bard's tale and he thought it sounded pretty cool, so now he is using it as a battle cry, similar to how nobles would shout the name of their family or castle. Or perhaps he understood that it's a battle order, but he doesn't exactly understand the meaning of it, so he shouts it just to sound like a party leader.
Charging into battle with a grand total of one buddy isn't exactly how I understand "form a line". Especially ironic is the fact that they are already forming a line, but when Barth and Aradin charge leaving Remira behind, they actually break the line.