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Originally Posted by Zarna
I really don't care if people save scum in a single player game, it doesn't affect me. They aren't trying to force it on us as a game mechanic, it is only a matter of player preference. Only time I do it is if an outcome is bugged or makes no sense, otherwise I prefer to keep playing even if something I don't like happens. All they need to do is have an option for people to turn it off if they want.

I think in EA there is a lot more of this since people are trying to see different outcomes, once released there will be less of it. They should take this into account with balancing some things that may not need balancing.

I think the only time it can affect others is if the devs change the DC due to save scumming stats. They did that with Arabella. Her initial DC was so high that even with high CHA it was a strong likelihood she would die.

I think the current DC is more appropriate and as a result, it affects all players.

I think it’s appropriate because you only get one shot at it and it’s a major change in outcome. But in the case of Shadowheart and her secret, I think it’s fine to keep the DC high since you get more chances to reveal it. And of course the DC should drop accordingly as your approval rating goes up during your travels.

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Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by DragonSnooz
The whole idea that players can't handle a few misses is baffling to me. That's like saying fans in the NFL can't handle an incomplete pass, all most fans remember is who won and who lost. Fans will even forget fumbles and interceptions if their team wins. (Maybe it's because an incomplete pass isn't always an incomplete pass, the chance for an interception is exciting).

HP-bloat does have the benefit of ensuring combat won't take too long, so it's not just about avoid save scumming at least.

The big difference is that playing a solo video game is not a competition...
That's a fair statement. It is true that the human side of the DM is gone in a videogame setting. A miss against a human being can feel more respectable than a miss against AI.
I've been more focused on the other side of my statement. That the human DM will make low-rolls not feel bad. While for the current meta in BG3 a miss is always not getting what you wanted.

I believe how Larian adapts to the lack of a human DM, will be the difference between a good and a great game.

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
As your friends, I also restart a battle when a single character die in FE : Three houses^^

xD
One of my friends always reminds me that I let Seteth, Lysithea, and Bernadetta die at the end of Blue Lions. To me, it was amazingly poetic they all died securing victory against the final boss.

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For story based reasons, scumming is good as it lets you explore all the content in the game. You can pop back and see what happens if you do X stupid thing you'd never do, and then pop back to your actual save. It's fun and kind of the point of choice-and-consequence roleplaying games to have stuff like that.
So penalising it, is just penalising players for exploring the game content.

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I feel like I’m missing something. Is there any reason to think Larian cares at all about save scumming or is this topic just about people being judgemental about others who savescum?

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Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 were practically built around the concept of incessant quick-saving and reloading. Metagaming has given BG a long afterlife, helped by things like Ironman modes, or solo class combos or speed runs or such, as well as mods to make the AI more punishing over time, but even when it first dropped the load screen was constantly reminding you to save and save often. A good boss fight was one that needed to be fought more than once or twice. Its kind of a defining feature of those games. They leaned heavily into Save/Rest flexibility to make D&D work for an RTS style RPG and I thought handled both pretty well. This game, BG3, should try and model itself on the successful approach of its predecessors. Making saving/reloading/restarting more difficult or unnecessarily complicated by default is totally anathema to BG in my view.

Baldur's Gate is basically groundhog day, or the 10 minute time machine like Dr Strange. The whole playstyle is basically like, "Ok now that I know, lets do it again! Again!"

BG2 was also successful because it took some liberties with things weapon proficiency/mastery or introducing new class kits. Some of those I didn't really like over BG1's approach, since it made some pure classes kind of obsolete, (especially the priests Totemic Druid>Druid, Priest of Talos>Cleric etc), and making weapons proficiencies so specific also balkanized the character builds into being based more around equipment, but still, that opened things up for a lot of reload replay. I don't recall ever hearing the term savescumming till I came here, that must have come from other games. In Baldur's Gate that's just how the thing played lol

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For a normal playthrough, BG3 certainly enforces save scumming way more than BG1/BG2.

Sure, it was much easier to actually get "game over" due to MC dying (and in BG1 with no easy way to raise dead also other characters), so saves/reloads were frequent, but that does not count as save scumming, does it? BG1/2 did not allow saving in combat, so saving/reloading after each (un)successful dice roll in combat was not possible.

But my main gripe are those obnoxious dice rolls in dialogues, I really think that in cRPG, it is way better to implement a "minimum stat required" system - in BG3, this could be implemented by calculating the expected value of the dice roll (like they did, with rounding, for HP on level ups), so you don't really have to change anything compared to the rules, advantage and bonuses still work the same way as before, just the randomness is taken out of the equation. Dialogue checks were handled as stat (charisma...) check without randomness in BG1/2 as well, although they were infrequent. The current system basically makes non-combat skills mostly irrelevant, at least in a single player game, with the only reason to consider them being reduction of number of reloads if the player thinks they got a result they really don't want.

I suspect it is just a cheap and effortless way to gain "this is D&D" points ("show them the 20-sided dice, no one can deny that then!"), instead of properly implementing the rules in places where it would actually improve the cRPG experience.

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Originally Posted by Warlocke
I feel like I’m missing something. Is there any reason to think Larian cares at all about save scumming or is this topic just about people being judgemental about others who savescum?
Larian brought up that they changed the game because of excessive save scumming. (The Kagha scene in particular). Larian collects metrics on the game and makes decisions based on that.

The thread is an open-ended question on how we feel about save-scumming. Do we think the devs should care about it?

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Originally Posted by Starshine
For story based reasons, scumming is good as it lets you explore all the content in the game. You can pop back and see what happens if you do X stupid thing you'd never do, and then pop back to your actual save. It's fun and kind of the point of choice-and-consequence roleplaying games to have stuff like that.
So penalising it, is just penalising players for exploring the game content.
This. There is close to zero games in the world (nothing comes to mind) that I have ever played through again fully. So during the one and only playthrough I explore all the converstation options available. That means gazillion of reloads during content rich games.

This my personal opinion of course is that saving should allowed everywhere (no problems here) and loading speeds should be optimized (problems here). And should Larian change anything because of this? No.


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The reason why save scumming is a problem is that given the opportunity players will optimise the fun right out of a game. There's no point putting points into conversation skills if players never fail a conversation check because success is just a quick press of F9 away. It's not really a minority most people will end up acting this way when you make reloading to avoid ever suffering consequences too easy.

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Originally Posted by Cirrus550
Originally Posted by Starshine
For story based reasons, scumming is good as it lets you explore all the content in the game. You can pop back and see what happens if you do X stupid thing you'd never do, and then pop back to your actual save. It's fun and kind of the point of choice-and-consequence roleplaying games to have stuff like that.
So penalising it, is just penalising players for exploring the game content.
This. There is close to zero games in the world (nothing comes to mind) that I have ever played through again fully. So during the one and only playthrough I explore all the converstation options available. That means gazillion of reloads during content rich games.

This my personal opinion of course is that saving should allowed everywhere (no problems here) and loading speeds should be optimized (problems here). And should Larian change anything because of this? No.
So not this. I would argue save-scumming is BAD, for both story and gameplay reasons. When a game facilitates easy save-scumming, it oftentimes becomes a compulsion, a kind of roleplaying straightjacket. It incentivizes the player to control every outcome to reach the ideal goal, rather than play freely how you like and accept the outcome. Perfection(ism) is the enemy of good. By allowing "cheap" perfection, imperfection becomes unacceptable even though the path towards that ideal outcome is tedious, unimmersive and downright anti-roleplaying. Your "gazillion of reloads" make even finishing a single playthrough that much less likely. You burn yourself out - not only reloading constantly, but even restarting the game repeatedly. Most gamers don't even finish a game once for such (and other) reasons.

Cyberpunk 2077 has a loot system that incentivizes save-scumming. The loot is somewhat randomized and the power level variation is significant. This leads to hundreds, if not thousands of reloads trying to optimize the loot throughout the course of the game. You feel compelled to do it because of the satisfaction of getting the best version of an item...even though it saps enjoyment from gameplay in general. Both by doing a boring repetitive act that breaks immersion, and by contributing to becoming overpowered in such a way you trivialize combat. In this way instant gratification wins out nearly every time.

Baldur's Gate 3 has done a lot to disincentivize this kind of behaviour by providing multiple ways to avoid undesirable outcomes and/or by making outcomes less binary good or bad. When it isn't through roleplaying opportunities, it is straight gameplay mechanics such as "inspiration points". There are some concerns over the balance however. For instance, the way Larian too readily hands out advantage on attack rolls to limit save-scumming incentivized by bad RNG which is the nature of the beast with DnD. This is a rather heavy-handed measure that will upset fragile DnD balancing and lead to poor balancing and/or more "house rules" changes to the DnD rules. Some people with a low tolerance for real or perceived failure advocate for a "baked-in" save-scumming system, ie. by making skill checks easier to succeed (and thereby making skill monkeys like Bards and Rogues that much less useful). Larian focusing on this issue is a very good thing, hopefully they will find the right balance in the process though.

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I general I agree save scumming is not ideal, it is something I try to avoid as it more or less ruins the experience for me personally. Though I have resorted to save scumming from time to time as there are the occasional outcome that is just plain bad if you fail the speech roll (intimidation/persuasion/etc..) The Kagha scene being a prime example. (another example where I resorted to save scumming is when I wanted to visit the zhentarim hideout.) Although, I think that last one might be a bug. =/ Even though I saved that Zhentarim dude and he gave me the password I still had to beat two rolls in order to enter the hideout without the choice of giving the password. Save scumming was required because if I failed the check I was deaded by the exploding barrels...

With that little tangent out of the way. My personal opinion is that they don't really need to do much except to doing what they are doing (I.E. adjusting the difficulty of roles where save-scumming is abnormally high.) There are few choices so far in this game I feel the need to win the roll on but there are situations where it happens.

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I fee like, its an, if you don't like it, don't do it problem?
there's nothing in the game that makes you do it, and penalising people doing it, because YOU dont want to do it, like, just don't do it.
If other people do, no skin off your nose.

Failing skill checks if just part of DnD-genre games too. Not poor balancing, poor balancing would be if they were all easy to pass as then that's just removing a game mechanic

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Originally Posted by Starshine
I fee like, its an, if you don't like it, don't do it problem?
there's nothing in the game that makes you do it, and penalising people doing it, because YOU dont want to do it, like, just don't do it.
If other people do, no skin off your nose.

Failing skill checks if just part of DnD-genre games too. Not poor balancing, poor balancing would be if they were all easy to pass as then that's just removing a game mechanic
Or you implement dialogue ability/skill checks without the random element like BG1/2 did (though they didn't have nearly as many of them)...

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Originally Posted by DiDiDi
Originally Posted by Starshine
I fee like, its an, if you don't like it, don't do it problem?
there's nothing in the game that makes you do it, and penalising people doing it, because YOU dont want to do it, like, just don't do it.
If other people do, no skin off your nose.

Failing skill checks if just part of DnD-genre games too. Not poor balancing, poor balancing would be if they were all easy to pass as then that's just removing a game mechanic
Or you implement dialogue ability/skill checks without the random element like BG1/2 did (though they didn't have nearly as many of them)...

can you imagine having an npc in a table top game keeping some fairly mundane secret about their past that explains their motivations and having it hidden behind 5 different difficult dice checks? At some point (after the first roll for me) the group would just say "fuck it, let's just move on". While dice are an integral part of the D&D experience, having fun while role playing is what I do it for. Failing dice checks over and over again and getting snarky remarks from npcs because of it isn't my idea of fun lol

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Originally Posted by spectralhunter
I think the only time it can affect others is if the devs change the DC due to save scumming stats. They did that with Arabella. Her initial DC was so high that even with high CHA it was a strong likelihood she would die.

I think the current DC is more appropriate and as a result, it affects all players.

I think it’s appropriate because you only get one shot at it and it’s a major change in outcome. But in the case of Shadowheart and her secret, I think it’s fine to keep the DC high since you get more chances to reveal it. And of course the DC should drop accordingly as your approval rating goes up during your travels.
As long as they don't do this every time people have some kind of emotional issue with something.

Originally Posted by Rack
The reason why save scumming is a problem is that given the opportunity players will optimise the fun right out of a game. There's no point putting points into conversation skills if players never fail a conversation check because success is just a quick press of F9 away. It's not really a minority most people will end up acting this way when you make reloading to avoid ever suffering consequences too easy.
But how does it affect your single player game if someone else does this in their single player game? Some people do it way too much but they do not make us do it as well.

Originally Posted by Seraphael
So not this. I would argue save-scumming is BAD, for both story and gameplay reasons. When a game facilitates easy save-scumming, it oftentimes becomes a compulsion, a kind of roleplaying straightjacket. It incentivizes the player to control every outcome to reach the ideal goal, rather than play freely how you like and accept the outcome. Perfection(ism) is the enemy of good. By allowing "cheap" perfection, imperfection becomes unacceptable even though the path towards that ideal outcome is tedious, unimmersive and downright anti-roleplaying. Your "gazillion of reloads" make even finishing a single playthrough that much less likely. You burn yourself out - not only reloading constantly, but even restarting the game repeatedly. Most gamers don't even finish a game once for such (and other) reasons.

Cyberpunk 2077 has a loot system that incentivizes save-scumming. The loot is somewhat randomized and the power level variation is significant. This leads to hundreds, if not thousands of reloads trying to optimize the loot throughout the course of the game. You feel compelled to do it because of the satisfaction of getting the best version of an item...even though it saps enjoyment from gameplay in general. Both by doing a boring repetitive act that breaks immersion, and by contributing to becoming overpowered in such a way you trivialize combat. In this way instant gratification wins out nearly every time.
If it takes the fun out of it then don't do it. I am not understanding why people feel compelled to do something they don't like. I would get burnout if I did it as much as you are describing so I don't do it. :P Also, loot is only pixels and they are not worth a negative mental state.

Originally Posted by Azariel
I general I agree save scumming is not ideal, it is something I try to avoid as it more or less ruins the experience for me personally. Though I have resorted to save scumming from time to time as there are the occasional outcome that is just plain bad if you fail the speech roll (intimidation/persuasion/etc..) The Kagha scene being a prime example. (another example where I resorted to save scumming is when I wanted to visit the zhentarim hideout.) Although, I think that last one might be a bug. =/ Even though I saved that Zhentarim dude and he gave me the password I still had to beat two rolls in order to enter the hideout without the choice of giving the password. Save scumming was required because if I failed the check I was deaded by the exploding barrels...

With that little tangent out of the way. My personal opinion is that they don't really need to do much except to doing what they are doing (I.E. adjusting the difficulty of roles where save-scumming is abnormally high.) There are few choices so far in this game I feel the need to win the roll on but there are situations where it happens.
They need to think carefully when they do this though, too much adjusting will lead to watered down and boring content. Easy mode should be where rolls are hard to fail.

I only do it where I would find it immersion breaking otherwise since there is not a DM you can explain things to (for example, 4 heavily armed individuals with hands on weapons surrounding a civilian and asking them a simple question will 99.9% of the time get an answer out of them unless said civilian is inebriated, but here there is only an intimidation check that may fail.) The Kagha scene was not an issue for me, failing it just showed me what type of person she was and I acted accordingly. I expect a lot of people weren't used to having something like that in their games which is where the complaints came from. If it was something that would have made people quit the game and get refunds then I can see why they changed it, although I do not understand why people had that reaction.

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Reloading saves is in ways not that different from just picking an Easy or Storymode difficulty in games. Some people like a challenge, others are in it for the story experience. Reloading failed dice roll checks is not that much different. Who cares how others play the game. Unless saves/quicksaves will be removed or made possible only in certain spots and locations, or the game changes to checkpoints it is a thing some people will use and others will not. Just like the difficulty levels you can pick.

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Originally Posted by Boblawblah
Originally Posted by DiDiDi
Originally Posted by Starshine
I fee like, its an, if you don't like it, don't do it problem?
there's nothing in the game that makes you do it, and penalising people doing it, because YOU dont want to do it, like, just don't do it.
If other people do, no skin off your nose.

Failing skill checks if just part of DnD-genre games too. Not poor balancing, poor balancing would be if they were all easy to pass as then that's just removing a game mechanic
Or you implement dialogue ability/skill checks without the random element like BG1/2 did (though they didn't have nearly as many of them)...

can you imagine having an npc in a table top game keeping some fairly mundane secret about their past that explains their motivations and having it hidden behind 5 different difficult dice checks? At some point (after the first roll for me) the group would just say "fuck it, let's just move on". While dice are an integral part of the D&D experience, having fun while role playing is what I do it for. Failing dice checks over and over again and getting snarky remarks from npcs because of it isn't my idea of fun lol

Well it is mine, the skill checks, the amount of it, and how integrated they are into this game is to me, one of the most fun and interesting aspects of this game and where the fun of it comes from.

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Not only do I approve of it I wish there was an option to try out everything without having to use the slow load screen. I'm one of those people that want to learn everything I can and see all the sights. Being locked behind a single choice just to be forced to replay the entire game again to see what else the game has to offer seems ludicrous to me.

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To quote Yatzhee; "You can't blame someone for breaking a window if the only door is in the roof!"

I find the 5e mechanics a bad mesh with the social and roleplaying sides of video games. It can often lock you out of content and options simply by RNG.

This is fine in tabletop where the DM can always incorporate failed rolls to further the story or make new paths forward on the fly when players do unexpected things. A video game, however, has limited options and the harsh treatment of the dice can feel very unfun when you're suffering bad rolls.

Managing accuracy and dice rolls can be fun as a core combat feature, because it emphasize positioning, buffs etc. Doing the same with social encounters is trickier, because each failed roll can cut off other rolls or outcomes entirely. A couple of bad rolls in a fight tend to result is using a bit more healing afterwards, but not outright losing if you play smart.

I think it could work if they added a few more options that are not dice rolls, but unlocked through classes, backgrounds and proficiencies. They should keep dice rolls, of course, but maybe limit them a bit more than now.


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Originally Posted by TomReneth
To quote Yatzhee; "You can't blame someone for breaking a window if the only door is in the roof!"

I find the 5e mechanics a bad mesh with the social and roleplaying sides of video games. It can often lock you out of content and options simply by RNG.

This is fine in tabletop where the DM can always incorporate failed rolls to further the story or make new paths forward on the fly when players do unexpected things. A video game, however, has limited options and the harsh treatment of the dice can feel very unfun when you're suffering bad rolls.

Managing accuracy and dice rolls can be fun as a core combat feature, because it emphasize positioning, buffs etc. Doing the same with social encounters is trickier, because each failed roll can cut off other rolls or outcomes entirely. A couple of bad rolls in a fight tend to result is using a bit more healing afterwards, but not outright losing if you play smart.

I think it could work if they added a few more options that are not dice rolls, but unlocked through classes, backgrounds and proficiencies. They should keep dice rolls, of course, but maybe limit them a bit more than now.

What is interesting is they already have that last part in some instances, an example of this would be super early on in the tutorial when you come across the intellect devourer, most classes/races have to do an arcana roll to determine what the creature (brain) is. However, a Githyanki player just knows that it's an intellect devourer with no roll required. I would like more of these types of situations where rolls are not required depending on race/class.

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