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Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Jojobobo, Nov 7, 2014.

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  1. Ruda

    Ruda Active Member

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    I very much prefer seeing all the options from the start but there is a case to be made for concealing which skills are made available in future levels. Causal players could benefit from not being overwhelmed and being in the dark enhances the sense of discovery as you pointed out earlier.

    Playing Pillars, I pretty much just went for the skill I thought sounded most interesting, thinking nothing of utility. So my character ended up pretty bad (especially for a Cipher) and for a second playthrough (if I ever finish the first one) I'm definitely going to print out a full skill tree for my class of choice.
    Yeah, but my bother wasn't as much of the availability of information as it was about the chunkiness of the whole level up process. All skills could easily have fitted the screen at the same time, allowing a simple click on the skill you're interested in rather than jumping through 9 (or more if you chose the wrong direction) on the way. Not to mention the hassle of comparing two different skill trees on the opposite side of the carousel.
    Yuck!
     
  2. Ruda

    Ruda Active Member

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    Oh, before I forget: Paradox (you know the swedes who owns all White Wolf stuff, published Pillars, and basically has Obsidian in their back pocket) is asking you to take an RPG survey. You like RPGs, right?

    The content of the survey bodes fairly well and there are comment sections at the end where you can write "new VTM, make it happen".

    So, you know, do that.
     
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  3. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    I told them to make VtR, because I'm a mad man. Owning both the pen and paper series of roleplaying books, I think there's so much that could be done for VtR - whereas with VtM you're constrained by this global metaplot which will likely make the games a little samey (i.e. there's the Sabbat, there's the Camarilla, to a much lesser extent in the world there are Anarchs, and in the east there are the walking Asian stereotypes the Kuei-Jin). With VtR, there are five separate factions which lack a global agenda, and so the stories you can produce are inherently more varied and the fans easy to please as there isn't a set in stone canon to play up to.

    I guess at least if Vampire is on the poll in general, it implies they are looking to make some use out of the IP. I think the game is a little too niche to have on just any RPG poll.
     
  4. wobbler

    wobbler Well-Known Member

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    On a half sidenote, my brother-in-law is working on paradox.
     
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  5. Aquila

    Aquila New Member

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    Paradox is my favourite games company! They make Europa Universalis, Crusader Kings... All the good stuff!
     
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  6. Ruda

    Ruda Active Member

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    I remember you speaking warmly about Requiem in the past but I'm so used to the Masquerade setting that I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around it. Especially since they use the same terms for entirely different things (the Camarilla are apparently long dead ancient Romans or something) but I figure that I'm just too lazy to even make a proper attempt. A bit less strict canon is a good thing (remember the uproar about the cab driver being Cain) and it'd indeed be dull if the story were a new conflict between the same factions. I think Troika did a good job at placing the major faction squabbles a bit in the backseat (which I imagine freed their hands a bit in regards to the story) but at the expense of a severely diminished Sabbat.
    Very cool. In what capacity?
     
  7. wobbler

    wobbler Well-Known Member

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    He is like some kind of general manager on several minor projects. He goes in and yell on the programmer when they are running late with the game and such. As far as I know he hasn't been personally involved with any of our favorite games (Pillars, EU4, HoI). TBH no really sure, hasn't talked very much about his work in specific.
     
  8. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    I think I preferred the setting because they distilled the clan concepts into the archetypes rather than the random mishmash they were in Masquerade, with each made to be symbolic of certain vampire myths (for example though the Tremere are fine in Masquerade, a full blown vampire wizard isn't really traditionally archetypal or representative of any particular folklore).

    Some clans I feel also got a lot of refinement conceptually - i.e. the Ventrue, the archetype of the hypnotic controlling vampire in the style of Dracula - lost Presence as a discipline (the ability to sway others emotionally - renaming Majesty in Requiem) and gained Animalism, while retaining Dominate and Resilience. This makes sense as by adding in Animalism they become masters over both man and beast, more suited to the gentrified controlling type. Further their weakness got much more interesting, doing away with feeding restrictions on people of lowly blood (which I think was the same in pen and paper too) and instead giving them a propensity to develop mental illness - making the idea of their ease of control of others troubling when they lack a fine level of control themselves. The more specific concepts became bloodlines, essentially a sub-clan you can develop giving you another discipline (sometimes unique and new, other times one belonging to another clan) but also another weakness. Given what I said about Ventrue, Malkavians became a clan of there's where they start with a mental illness that they can't ever shake - but gain Obfuscate that functions similarly to how it did in the game.

    The covenants on the whole became more interesting too, with nothing so black and white as the Sabbat and the Camarilla - ranging from one that wants to have modern styles of governance in a city, one that's strictly feudal like the Camarilla, one that's like a masonic society focusing on refinement of vampirism and separate religious covenants - one christianity inspired and the other dedicated to paganism. As mentioned vampires only operate on a city level without grand global schemes for the most part (travelling can be deadly, so it makes sense in terms of keeping sense to have intrigues kept to a city or small area), so each city is different and can have varying amounts of any of these factions.

    For all these reasons, the setting is much richer and more well conceived than Masquerade ever was - and I'd say easier to work with too. However with the fanbase for Masquerade being what it is, I don't think they'll ever be trying a Requiem game.
     
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  9. Philes

    Philes Well-Known Member

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    As a complete tangent, I've been playing quite a bit of Grim Dawn lately. Been enjoying it quite a bit, it's like the team fixed several of the shitty parts of Titan Quest and made it all smoother. (I'm aware they're mostly the same devs)
     
  10. Jungle Japes

    Jungle Japes Well-Known Member

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    Mad Max is currently on sale on Steam for 10 bucks, in case anyone was holding off for a big price drop.

    Also, Halcyon 6: Starbase Commander is quite good, if you're looking for a casual space game.

    In other gaming news, I recently went full nerd and got into D&D 5e. It's a lot of fun if you've got a good group and decent DM. Not so much fun with a lousy DM or a bitchy group. The game mechanics seem pretty solid and fun, but good luck wrapping your brain around all the Forgotten Realms lore if you're not already somewhat familiar with it.
     
  11. Ruda

    Ruda Active Member

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    I'm convinced. It does sound more interesting and it would refreshing to be a bit unfamiliar with the setting from the get-go. Too bad that Masquerade is more popular, I suppose. But a new Vampire would of course be great news regardless.
    Oh, I get it. He's one of those responsible for rushed endings, isn't he? Scum of the earth.
     
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  12. wobbler

    wobbler Well-Known Member

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    Maybe. Thought on paradox it's more making sure they stick to the plan and dont spend 2 years trying to get the leafs on the trees the exact right colour and shape so you get behind and have top rush the ending.

    Started a bit with life is strange, since I apparently bought it. (can't remember, life is strange, eh(HAHAHA I'M SO FUNNY)?)
     
  13. Jungle Japes

    Jungle Japes Well-Known Member

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    I'm probably late in getting this news, but Wasteland 3 is a thing. It's in crowdsourcing right now.
     
  14. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the info, it's not like any news lands here early anymore (and there's about a whole month left to fund it, so even if the news isn't as fast as it could be it is timely). After not having played Wasteland, and after Wasteland 2 not getting the greatest reception from you guys from what I remember (though the let's play was pretty good) I think I'll wait until it's released until slapping down my hard earned cash - though admittedly the winter setting does have my interest piqued a little.

    In terms of my riveting game experiences, I finally finished Pillars of Eternity! I played it solo on Path of the Damned only using guns, I even posted up a build of it on their website here. You don't have to say, I cam sense your jealousy. You're all just wishing you had such a great opening line with the ladies as, "Hey baby, have you ever met a guy who soloed PoE on PotD using only slow firearms? I'm... kind of a big deal..."

    After finishing the core game and the expansions, I went back and read Japes' thoughts on the game (which are sinfully in the Good Morning thread and took me a while to track), so I thought I'd give my own thoughts too:

    While I don't think the gods being manmade was as much of a bummer as Japes, I did think it was a bit of a half-baked twist. There was no allusion to this truth in the game, just a big gotcha moment right at the end. As many others have said about the ending, your character only really reacts to the revelation with melodrama. You don't really do much to establish your character's religious leanings either way, so it all feels a little offbeat.

    However, conceptually, I thought it was a neat idea. The gods in Pillars are powerful, but would the idea they were conceived by fallible humanity undermine their right to rule? Would, if people literally discovered there was no god and yet desperately wanted one to fill the void, create one in the image they wanted so that future generations could benefit? These were compelling questions, and I liked additional touches such as the idea Ondra destroying the Engwithans revealed in the White March part II to practically make the world lose the knowledge they had (inferring specifically the knowledge to produce a god) in the first place. People seem to think the idea that the gods were created will be a major theme of PoE 2, but that would presumably only be if the Watcher themselves or their companions spilled the beans - though I guess given the melodrama they might do.

    In terms of the expansion itself, I really like the first part of the White March over the second. People described the first part as a needless dungeon crawler, but I found that vastly more true of the second half if you decide to fight people - which I did. I also liked the idea of uncovering lost secrets and knowledge in the first half, defending people against an ill-defined threat in the second didn't really do it for me.

    Spoilers aside, I think how buggy the game is still is a bit of a let down. They're now working on their last patch, but only after I... (spoiler tags around my self-aggrandising monologue so you don't have to read it):

    ...had a whiny fit on their forums saying their customer service was shit - we funded that game, we're practically shareholders in a sense, they should be accountable. Essentially, they beta tested the previous 3.03 patch (after a 3-4 month wait, with significant bugs like enemies defensives sky-rocketing on saving that needed to be fixed, which they could have released a hotfix for), and people in the beta testing said, "Hey, this is a problem, fix it," and then they didn't bother - defeating the whole point of beta testing in the first place (and it was a bug they managed to introduce in the patching process, 3.03 did not have this bug). They then tweeted a gif of Eder dancing and said, "It's our final patch, hoorah," to which I had a spaz attack about saying it wasn't good enough (that Karkarov guy, what a cunt).

    To cut the story short, it was a good thing mainly me forced their hand as there still is a crap load of bugs that needed fixing, and they're currently offering goody bags for good bug reporting in their current beta because of the backlash (you're welcome). It will have made the game a lot more polished (which strikes me as weird they didn't want in the first place, as people will go back and buy their back catalogue on getting future games and it'd reflect badly on them) and improve satisfaction of the fanbase in general, which is pretty neat. Rest assured, if I'm not being a douchebag on here I am elsewhere.

    However, there's still bugs that I've brought up that they won't be fixing that will linger like a smelly fart in the room (stuff like, if you're playing solo at least, enemies becoming randomly un-charmed/confused/dominated well before the duration is over - and more besides) which are a big let down - especially seeing as every patch up to 3.03 has been fraught with pretty unpleasant, though not game-breaking, bugs. It's crazy that even on the forums people were saying this should just be an industry standard now, I whole-heartedly reject that. I think there's a very real sense of the game being rushed when you play it, and while it's still a good game (a 7/10 or 8/10 depending on what day you catch me) it did not deliver on the expectation. The sequel, however, could be much better.

    I've now taken to the BioShock collection, which is great. Something that struck me on a metaphorically this time with the first BioShock was the very real sense of the city taking on water, strongly implying that the whole Ayn Rand majestic ideal (the impressive art deco architecture and staggering buildings themselves) is prone to destroying itself in a physical sense (and obviously in the very slap you round the face with it sense with the splicers which I appreciated first time round) and could be perceived as being not water tight. I guess I'm not great with the readily apparent metaphors.

    It's still a very fetch-questy game, but I find the setting extremely masterful and worth a replay even if it's by modern standards becoming a bit lacking.

    How are all your people's gaming experiences going?
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2016
  15. Smuel

    Smuel Well-Known Member

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    Eh, you know how it is. Win some, lose some.
     
  16. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    That is what happens in games.

    I watched the live-screening of Louis Theroux's Scientology documentary last night (it was okay, not that great) but it gave me some thoughts on Pillars of Eternity and a lot of parallels. Here's some crap I posted about it from the Pillars of Eternity forums, which I thought might be a little interesting given a lot of us backed the game:

    1) Scientolgists believe that every person is an immortal Thetan (a race of supremely powerful beings, but also more or less the soul itself), who dies, undergoes assumption (reincarnation) and then dies again - repeating the process ad infinitum in ignorance of their past lives (unless you of course adhere to Scientology). This spiritualist viewpoint to me seems identical to how it works in Pillars, with people dying, being returned to the Wheel, and being reincarnated - often with ignorance of their past lives, or when they do have knowledge of their past lives it is often harmful.

    From the UK Scientology website, "It is a fact that unless one begins to handle aberration built up in past lives, he doesn’t progress. In Scientology, one is given the tools to handle upsets and aberrations from past lives that adversely affect the individual in the present, thus freeing one to live a much happier life," sound like the Watcher much? Or indeed anyone we found who has been awakened most of the time in the game, Mahena, etc.

    2) Thaos has all the hallmarks of an Operating Thetan, both in terms of personality, powers and more or less by literal definition. Operating Thetans are supposedly fully aware of their past lives and are an actualisation of Thetan race that lies dormant in the rest of us, attributed such powers as projection out of their body, telekinesis and the ability to control others - sound familiar?

    In terms of the personality traits, Scientologists believe in a Reactive Mind and an Analytical Mind. The Reactive Mind stores experiences (both of past and present lives) that debilitate people in their remembrance (called engrams), where as the Analytical Mind serves consciousness. Scientologist undergo auditing, which seems to be a variation of mindfulness, in order to neutralise feelings towards these engrams and allow the Analytical Mind to operate - with a larger view of restoring your inner Thetan to its power.

    As you can imagine, this can make Scientologists aloof and confident, as well as giving them great mental fortitude and the ability to create mental barriers. All of these Thaos also has, acting extremely disinterested in the Watcher, and being extremely difficult to crack into as well as inscrutable (Lady Webb barely gets anything out of him). Thaos seems to be more or less an Operating Thetan personified.

    3) The Leaden Key seems to have more or less the structure of the Church of Scientology, with the lower members kept in more or less total darkness to the massive secrets known only to the top tiers. In Scientology, from what I can make out, this power structure is maintained to protect less enlightened members from knowledge that may overwhelm them. I guess the difference here would be Scientologists purport to want to enlighten people, whereas Thaos quite clearly wants people kept in the dark.

    4) Animancy in general seems to have a distinct Scientological vibe, the ability to improve on the immortal soul through empirical and practical methodologies instead of souls being approached with mysticism. This very practical approach seems extremely contrary to most real world faiths' beliefs on the soul, and yet meshes very well with that presented by Scientology. If anything, you could argue that Animancy is more or less Scientology in the game - whereas the conventional gods are a distraction from this truth (and arguably, a means for Thaos to keep people away from this level of power that he and the other Engwithans originally obtained). Thaos seems like an Operating Thetan and Suppressive Person (i.e. someone who wants to keep the Thetans down and not allow people to realise their inner potential) all rolled into one - which I guess is heretical from a Scientological stand point.

    More likely than not, no one will want to comment on this, but I thought it was worthy of a mention given I can't find anyone else who has made the same connection.
     
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  17. Philes

    Philes Well-Known Member

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    Stardew Valley 1.1 came out recently. I've been enjoying the new farm layouts. It's a very relaxing, chill game.
     
  18. Zanza

    Zanza Well-Known Member

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    I think I still prefer the normal farm layout. Gives you enough room to choose what you want to specialise in. I will however be trying out the fishing layout mainly because the big money is from fish.
     
  19. Philes

    Philes Well-Known Member

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    Really? From everything I've read, the big money is in crops and Starfruit/Ancient fruit artisan goods.

    But that's the real beauty of the game, you can be successful in pretty much whatever endeavor you choose and still have fun doing it.
     
  20. Zanza

    Zanza Well-Known Member

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    I think there is good money to be made from crops when the year 2 seeds are available or when you have a large farm that waters itself etc.

    I read all these min/maxing guides and just think they take the fun away from the game. For me just the tranquility and story is good. Also it is nice to play a game that isn't about killing things.
     
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