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Eternity Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire + DLC Thread - now with turn-based combat!

Haplo

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Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
Like I have already wrote many times before, the devs only needed one small change to make the Turn Based system playable - and even fun for those who prefer this style: to remove the universal round framework and make it personal initiative + action time based. The system was never made for universal rounds. Alas...
 

Nikanuur

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Like I have already wrote many times before, the devs only needed one small change to make the Turn Based system playable - and even fun for those who prefer this style: to remove the universal round framework and make it personal initiative + action time based. The system was never made for universal rounds. Alas...
I believe, if only Po2 was sanely moddable, someone would took upon the change. It doesn't seem it would be too much of work.
 

Iskramor

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Like I have already wrote many times before, the devs only needed one small change to make the Turn Based system playable - and even fun for those who prefer this style: to remove the universal round framework and make it personal initiative + action time based. The system was never made for universal rounds. Alas...
I believe, if only Po2 was sanely moddable, someone would took upon the change. It doesn't seem it would be too much of work.
Its gigantic task you would need pseudo-overhaul mod to fix all garbage in game.
 

Nikanuur

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Wasn't too much work to make all the romance mods were Aloth pegs you though.

Jokes aside, last time I looked the problem lied with the newer version of PoE II being incompatible with the only asset-modding tool there was (UABE). Unpack, learn, edit stuff; all can be done just fine. Pack back successfully--not so much or not at all. Tried various versions of UABE to no avail.
 

Roguey

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Pathfinder series did a much better job of turning RTwP to TBS, and I think they have less trash mobs, too.
Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

The Pathfinders only work better in turn-based because the system was originally designed for it. The content is a slog regardless of which system is used, but made worse when combat has to take longer.
 

chuft

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I finished everything in Deadfire in turn based (except the arena expansion which sounded like it would have been a real grind). Very playable, you can actually hear the sounds/voices and see the animations without the absurd stuttering of the RTwP system caused by the constant need to pause. It had a Fallout 1 tense yet humorous feel to the combat, getting to enjoy attacks one at a time and see that enemy get critted etc. and dreading that incoming attack against your wounded guy.

RTwP worked in IE games because the combat pace was slower and there was a lot less going on in terms of spells and abilities (and their graphical obfuscation of what the hell was going on). I don't know why they speeded it up so much for POE. Probably part of the general trend of "impatient players" that plagues game design today. I think the IE mod lets you slow it down a lot? Might go back and restart POE1 with that mod. Tried it once but didn't finish for some reason. Probably because I got into Planetfall and Gladius.

I made the mistake when starting White March of having it set to a harder difficulty, a decision you can't undo, which kind of ruined POE for me and caused me to stop playing it. My first encounter there was the drunken monk guy who wiped out my party, that was no fun especially since there was a bug where enemies kept gaining hit points with each quicksave as you worked your way across the map, making them unbeatable. I later bypassed that area and tried another only to get wiped by the alpine dragon in another unfair uncounter. I am mystified by people saying WM is the best part of the game. Maybe I will just try the whole game at normal difficulty just to see it all.
 

Tygrende

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is there a fighter/ranger or similar martial class build that can one shot mobs with arqebus on POTD?
Closest would probably be bleak walker/assassin with Dragon's Dowry, using empowered flames of devotion. My black jacket/assassin arquebus only team was optimized for instant weapon switches with 4 arquebuses so it lost some potential damage from not being bleak walkers, but still could 1-shot some enemies from time to time. Forget about 1-shoting bosses or anything more serious though. The unique double barrel arqebus can 2-shot vessels that are lower level than the user, which can work on surprisingly strong enemies, like the huge engwithian titans in the final fight, it also works on pierce immunes that wouldn't take any damage otherwise.

Overall everything in Deadfire is designed to be more spammable than in PoE1, so 1-shoting is harder. Enemies have more HP and the base damage of arquebus is much lower.
 

gurugeorge

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Like I have already wrote many times before, the devs only needed one small change to make the Turn Based system playable - and even fun for those who prefer this style: to remove the universal round framework and make it personal initiative + action time based. The system was never made for universal rounds. Alas...

I keep thinking there's a lot more interest you could have in turn-based gameplay on a computer to simulate better the idea of it being realistic-but-chunked. A flexible action time queue (like in Troubleshooter) is a great way of doing it. You could also expand what PF does with delaying turns into some kind of "co-ordination" option. Like for example one character agrees with another character later in the queue to delay attacking now and co-ordinate an attack together with them (UI-wise, I'm envisioning a "sticky" slider like in PF that you can move along under character's portraits and if it's an enemy, you have radiating options depending below, with your team's faces and and orders for team maneuvers you can give them relative to that mob, and with a team mate's portrait, radiating options under their portrait, that you pick and then click on a mob portrait to apply to). And of course it would be so much more interesting if mobs could co-ordinate the same way as you (so long as you had some cues).

Because of the genealogy in these games, they're based from systems with human beings sitting around tables and having fun, and while an element of simulation is there, it's necessarily highly abstracted. Whereas with computers, you are able to directly represent more of the simulation. But with the greater possibilities of representing the simulation, the gameplay requires something more refined and flexible than "Grug take turn A, Grog take turn B."

Playing this again though, makes me realize how wonderful the combination of refined RTwP gameplay and being able to tweak your own AI is, it's definitely a whole gestalt unto itself.
 
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razvedchiki

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on the back of a T34.
is there a fighter/ranger or similar martial class build that can one shot mobs with arqebus on POTD?
Closest would probably be bleak walker/assassin with Dragon's Dowry, using empowered flames of devotion. My black jacket/assassin arquebus only team was optimized for instant weapon switches with 4 arquebuses so it lost some potential damage from not being bleak walkers, but still could 1-shot some enemies from time to time. Forget about 1-shoting bosses or anything more serious though. The unique double barrel arqebus can 2-shot vessels that are lower level than the user, which can work on surprisingly strong enemies, like the huge engwithian titans in the final fight, it also works on pierce immunes that wouldn't take any damage otherwise.

Overall everything in Deadfire is designed to be more spammable than in PoE1, so 1-shoting is harder. Enemies have more HP and the base damage of arquebus is much lower.

my idea of opening a fight is firing a salvo and hopefully killing 2-3 mobs and then follow up with melee. in poe 1 on potd mode i needed 6 shots from the whole party plus another 1 or 2 to kill a single trash mob. (exept the weaker ones).
 

IHaveHugeNick

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If the goal is one-shooting dudes for the lulz, you really need to look into single classing. Most of the truly broken shit involves abusing power-level/empowerment mechanics and empowerement-adjacent combos. .

And don't get fooled by descriptions of some top level abilities, the skill tree UI is fucking retarded and it doesn't always show how power levels will impact the damage.
 

gurugeorge

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Strap Yourselves In
In other news, Mirke has become my favourite sidekick, and a permanent fixture in the team, both in terms of amusement and in terms of damage output - who knew that the Shadowdancer was such a beast? :) I'd passed her by before because the last two times I just did the ship stealing thing at Fort Deadlight, and her recruitment speech was perfunctory, but this time I did the whole number with getting Benweth to come down and play the keys, and she was quite jolly and engaging through all that, the voice actress really chewed up the scenery there :)

I'm torn between keeping her on fists or trying to make a Pukestabber build with her though. Curious about that.

I keep trying and failing to make something of Ydwin, she's just so damn frail.

This new interest in sidekicks-I-never-used has made me curious about the others - Constanten and the girl in Arkemyr's shop. I don't have a Chanter so Konstanten Howler might be interesting.

***********

Oh forgot to mention, I'm pleased to have discovered (on another team) my conceptually perfect Bard build - Troubador/Debonaire. Haven't yet gotten to the Chanter mass charms on the character, but I should think they will be handy (Debonaire has near-gauranteed hit to crit on charmed mobs, but his default single-target charm, while quite useful, powerful and long-lasting, only works on kith, the chanter charm should work on more races.)
 
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ArchAngel

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In other news, Mirke has become my favourite sidekick, and a permanent fixture in the team, both in terms of amusement and in terms of damage output - who knew that the Shadowdancer was such a beast? :) I'd passed her by before because the last two times I just did the ship stealing thing at Fort Deadlight, and her recruitment speech was perfunctory, but this time I did the whole number with getting Benweth to come down and play the keys, and she was quite jolly and engaging through all that :)

I'm torn between keeping her on fists or trying to make a Pukestabber build with her though. Curious about that.

I keep trying and failing to make something of Ydwin, she's just so damn frail.

This new interest in sidekicks-I-never-used has made me curious about the others - Constanten and the girl in Arkemyr's shop. I don't have a Chanter so Konstanten Howler might be interesting.
I tried using a bunch of them. Except for Mirke as Monk none were very useful. Shop mage girl is just weaker than Aloth. It did not help that both Chanters and Ciphers are much weaker in TB.
 

Haplo

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Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
Fassina is generally weaker then Aloth. But she makes up for it with her breadth - if you pick her multiclass wizard/druid option. She's not gonna run out of useful casts anytime soon. Also druidic regeneration spells, as well as stackable pulsing aoe DOTs are the strongest AFAIR. Woodskin and its upgrade are great defensive buffs, particularly against ranged enemies (boarding!).
I wouldn't waste a character slot on a pure druid, but Fassina with 2 spellbooks was fine.

Oh and she's fun to bring along for the final DLC.
Overall I liked her.
 
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gurugeorge

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Strap Yourselves In
Fassina is generally weaker then Aloth. But she makes up for it with her breadth - if you pick her multiclass wizard/druid option. She's not gonna run out of useful casts anytime soon. Also druidic regeneration spells, as well as stackable pulsing aoe DOTs are the strongest AFAIR. Woodskin and its upgrade are great defensive buffs, particularly against ranged enemies (boarding!).
I wouldn't waste a character slot on a pure druid, but Fassina with 2 spellbooks was fine.

Oh and she's fun to bring along for the final DLC.
Overall I liked her.

I read in passing about an amusing bit of lore related to her - apparently there's a letter or something lying around that shows that all the stuff that was pissing her off was Arkemyr testing her, and he reckons she's a good apprentice and is going to be quite powerful. Sounds like a Wizard/Druid combination represents that idea of her very well.
 

Desiderius

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Insert Title Here Pathfinder: Wrath
Fassina is generally weaker then Aloth. But she makes up for it with her breadth - if you pick her multiclass wizard/druid option. She's not gonna run out of useful casts anytime soon. Also druidic regeneration spells, as well as stackable pulsing aoe DOTs are the strongest AFAIR. Woodskin and its upgrade are great defensive buffs, particularly against ranged enemies (boarding!).
I wouldn't waste a character slot on a pure druid, but Fassina with 2 spellbooks was fine.

Oh and she's fun to bring along for the final DLC.
Overall I liked her.
Idk man hard to quit that Tehanu enemies only perk.
 

Riddler

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Bubbles In Memoria
Man, development and performance of this game feels like such a shame and missed opportunity.

I Recently started replaying Deadfire and I’m at once struck by how much this game gets right while at the same time missing key components to make it a truly great and enjoyable game, and instead leaves it an intermittenlty enjoyable but for me ultimately frustrating experience.

On the positive side we have:

  • The graphics, they look great. The backgrounds, the particle effects, the weather effects etc. All this looks amazing. The one nit-pick I have is character models that just look Ok, especially combined with Sawyers realism boner making all the armors looking too similar for the view distance (because they mostly have cloth covering)
  • The quest design is often very good. There are multiple solutions to practically every quest and you can utilise a vast number of abilities in mostly logical ways to solve problems.
  • Great item variety with a tons of different types of equipment and effects. Tons of creativity and variety here even if it visually sometimes blends together a bit and has been somewhat nerfed since release.
  • Reactions and reputations for most things you do.
  • Some of the music is really nice, like the tavern music and the sea chanties, as well as some of the old tracks.


These are big positives and at the first glance this sounds amazing but unfortunately some of the negatives puts a damper on all the positive that has been accomplished.



  • The biggest glaring negative is the poor character writing and the abysmal plot. In such a narrative heavy game as this you can’t fail this badly in these respects. The plot goes nowhere and you have little to no say over what happens, in an RPG! It is good that you can choose whatever faction you want to side with but when the overall plot has such massive implications and you have no means to impact it at all, despite obvious avenues to do so that are shut down by GM fiat (for what reason!?).

    The characters are uniformly uninteresting and uncompelling. You neither want to be their friend or are interested in what they have to say. This extends to both the companions and other characters in the game, they all talk a ton but they say nothing of interest, nor are they funny. That Edér, aloth and Pallegina are returning characters says a lot here. Edér was the best of the lot and he was barely above non-offensive in the original.
  • The gameplay is too easy and uniform. You quickly stumble upon some strategy that works for every encounter (perhaps outside of the mega bosses) and the lack of hard counters makes sure you never have to adjust. The game is trivialised on the highest difficulty by like hour 5. There are other issues like engagement, action glut leading to excessive pausing etc. but the lack of difficulty and hard counters is the most glaring because it makes every encounter become the same trivial shit.
  • The new music is straight up bad. I assume this is because they didn’t have a dedicated composer and justin Bell’s meagre abilities were tied up with the late addition of full VA.


There are of course other issues as well, such as wokeness making things stupid but these issues aren’t so bad (although I dread what nu-obsidian writing team comes up with next.

So, what can be done about these things for an possible future game?

  • Hire a competent lead writer, its painfully obvious that Sawyer isn’t up to snuff herding the current obsidian writers. At the same time, the writers aren’t that bad and with proper leadership they could probably turn out passable stuff.
  • Hire a composer, or at the very least give your in house person a realistic chance of producing something decent. Music is important, it affects peoples perception and enjoyment of games to a very large degree, especially casual fans.
  • Overhaul the combat system again. Either make it turn based or try to understand what makes real time games work and try to greatly decrease the required amount of pausing. This is probably a pipedream though seems sawyer will inevitably try to design this.
Is any of this going to happen? most likely not. If they make another game i forsee even worse writing, to the point of being completly unplayable, similar combat system OR maybe a switch to TB and possibly the hiring of an actual composer with microsoft money.
Such a shame.
 

chuft

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You know there's an option to play it turn based right? I did and greatly enjoyed the game.
 

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