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> Pillars Of Eternity
SubRosa
post May 13 2018, 03:09 AM
Post #201


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Pillars of Eternity II is out, so I bought it. It is huge. About a 25 gig download. I have a pretty fast internet speed, and it took me about 5 hours or so to download it.

I had some issues right off the bat. First whenever it I started the game, it would only show about an inch of it along the top of my monitor, and my desktop along the rest of the screen. I would have to Alt+Tab back and forth multiple times before I could get the game to show up full screen. It took some digging but I found out that in the game's options -> graphics it was set to Windowed. Setting it to Fullscreen fixed that.

I also had a huge amount of screen flickering whenever I moved. I mean really painful to the eyes. I found that again going to Options -> Graphics and setting the MSAA to 1 stopped that.

I also found that at one point the keyboard just stopped working. That was a real pita. Restarting the game seemed to fix it. I think.

So getting to the actual game, I only played enough to get a feel for it. You can import a save from Pillars of Eternity I. So long as it is from just before the endgame. I experimented and imported Persephone's save.

An interesting thing is that even with an imported save, you still have the options to change your character's race, class, portraits, etc... Basically you still start your character over from scratch. So it isn't really importing your character. Instead I think it is just importing your choices from the first game. Because if you do not import a save, you still have to tell the game how the first game turned out. There are half a dozen choices to pick from, on a sliding scale from really good to really awful. So PoE II takes it for granted that your character was the hero from the the first game, whether you actually played it or not.

Another observation is that the beginning is rather long. In PoE I you start straight with character creation, then you are dropped into the world and the tutorial starts with a little bit of talking, and then you can start walking around doing stuff. In PoE II the game starts with your character being dead and in the afterlife, and you get a very brief replay of some of the key events of PoE I. Then you talk to the goddess of death and she tells you that shit has hit the fan since you have been gone. Then you finally get to create your character. Afterward there is some more talking, you get a second chance at life, go back to Eora, and find yourself on a ship. Then there is more talking. And finally a battle with pirates.

So basically the opening of PoE II is a lot more long and drawn out. Not really a good thing if you like creating a lot of characters (like me).

I also discovered something pretty quick. In PoE I you had two character portraits: A large one and a small one. In PoE II there are four of them. Obisidian calls the two new ones watercolors. I call them crappy artwork. Why anyone would want that over the good artwork is a mystery to me.

I also saw that all of the classes from PoE I were present from the start of the game. I did not see any new classes or races. However, there is the option to multi-class now, and there are subclasses as well.

I didn't really go any further. I just got a sense of it. I am not really in a big hurry. If it is anything like the first game I expect there to be lots of updates to the game, some of which will probably require restarts of the game because of save game incompatibility. Instead I went back to PoE I. Maybe I will finish that with Aela, then import her save to PoE II and play here there after the versions get settled down some.


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SubRosa
post May 16 2018, 08:53 PM
Post #202


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So I am back to my PoE I game starring Aela and her TES pals.

Here is a team pic. From the back, Aela is on the left and Ungarion beside her. The middle row is - left to right - Ancondil, Tadrose, Teresa, and Methredhel. Up front is Teresa's animal companion Barenziah. Plus of course the giant miniature cosmic space piglet pet Boo

Aela buffs up the team with an Armor of Faith spell, while off to the side Ungarion slings a Rolling Flame spell at the oncoming attackers

Later in the same fight, Aela has been knocked down, while Methredhel gets hammered by a Pillar of Faith spell cast by the Xaurip Shaman (the guy in the staff and headdress to the left)

Taking on a Drake and its Xaurip minions

While the rest of the team slugs it out with skeletons, Aela kills the skellie mage from long range with her Barbs of Condemnation spell


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Acadian
post May 17 2018, 04:02 PM
Post #203


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Hee! Nice, I recognize the red head with the faint smile! happy.gif


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SubRosa
post Mar 2 2019, 02:48 AM
Post #204


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Good news! IEMod is out for game version 3.07. That is the final version of Pillars of Eternity I. I just downloaded it, and it seems to work fine. I think I am going to try a new game with Aela and the vanilla companions.


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Acadian
post Mar 3 2019, 02:42 AM
Post #205


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Back to D&D! I look forward to seeing/hearing some of Aela's adventures.


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SubRosa
post Mar 3 2019, 04:36 AM
Post #206


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I have added some mods for 3.07. So far on the Nexus there are mods for making Arcane Veil modal (which I insist on), and improving the range and speed of Arcane Assault. There is one that removes the time limit for Druid shapeshifting. One to improve Rogue talents, and one to improve Paladin talents. Sadly, there is not one to improve the Rangers.

I tried my old Ranger talent mod that works with 3.05 and 3.06, but it does not work on 3.07. sad.gif So far that is the only difficulty I have found.


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SubRosa
post Apr 20 2020, 03:13 AM
Post #207


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I spent some time experimenting with January in Pillars of Eternity 1. I am trying her as a Monk class, because that is basically what she is. The trouble is, I don't really like how PoE does Monks. Your class powers are based on Wounds, which you only get from taking damage. Which is really counter-intuitive.

The class does do some serious unarmed damage right out of the gate. More than the regular classes do with the base weapons. But where the Fighter can do a Knockdown twice every battle, Jan can do no special attacks at all, because she is not being hit.

After Cliant Lis January went it alone. I removed Heodan and Calisca from the party so they did not get killed. I can bring them back into the party if I really want to. But so far I decided to try it solo. January hit a lot more, took a lot more damage, and so was able to use her special powers. So far the only one she has is Torment's Reach, which is a cone-shaped area attack that does extra crushing damage. It was really cool.

She took on the bear in Valewood solo. That was touch and go. The bear hit her once and gave her 5 Wounds from all the damage. That gave her tons of special attacks. Then the bear hit her again and she was dead. I reloaded and tried once more. This time after being hit once Jan took about 7 Wounds, and was nearly dead. She was able to drink a healing potion and get her health back. Because of that she survived.

So I am not sure what to think. It can work, but it is really weird. I don't like all this Wound business. I wish there was some way to use your powers without them. Or a mod that would let you start every battle with X number of Wounds. But sadly there is not, and this game is just too insanely difficult to mod for me to create one.

So I might just restart and try her as a Paladin instead. She is not especially devout. But she is a magical fighter, and she is definitely an inspiration. She does work as a sword and board fighter, as she has been doing in Skyrim. She is a Viking after all. I have always imagined her eventually learning to fight with a sword in the Stormcrow fic. I could go Fighter, but Eder is one, and he is the first companion you meet. Likewise, he works best as Sword and Shield. So maybe I could do January as a two-handed sword Paladin?


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SubRosa
post Apr 20 2020, 07:30 PM
Post #208


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I am having a lot more fun with Jan as a Paladin. Now I just cannot decide what to use -> Spear and Shield, Sword and Shield, or Greatsword. I think I am having the most fun with the Spear and Shield combo so far.


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Acadian
post Apr 20 2020, 08:16 PM
Post #209


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QUOTE(SubRosa @ Apr 20 2020, 11:30 AM) *

I am having a lot more fun with Aela as a Paladin. Now I just cannot decide what to use -> Spear and Shield, Sword and Shield, or Greatsword. I think I am having the most fun with the Spear and Shield combo so far.


Glad you're making some progress. Aela or Jan?


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SubRosa
post Apr 20 2020, 09:49 PM
Post #210


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Oops, I got confused. Jan is the Paladin. Aela has signed on to be her cleric in this playthrough. All the other NPCs will be the vanilla ones. I just don't want to use the vanilla cleric NPC, since I don't like him.


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SubRosa
post Apr 22 2020, 12:15 AM
Post #211


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I am enjoying playing January as a Paladin a lot more than my attempt as a Monk. She has a talent called Strange Mercy that I just adore. Whenever she kills an enemy, it heals all of her party members.

I did some things differently with her that I normally would. I gave her the Arcane Veil ability, which normally only wizards get. It is basically a force field, and gives a big defense bonus, making it harder to hit her. At the same time she does not wear armor (well, she just now upgraded to a set of robes). So she has the full attack speed, even with a Great Sword. But if she does get hit, she does not have any armor to soak any of the damage up. I maxed out her Constitution at the start, so she can take a lot of hits however, just like in her fiction.

She is also a Pale Elf, my first time every playing one, or even having one in the party. They get a defense bonus vs. Fire and Cold attacks. I am not sure if that is making a difference or not.

So far, she is a pretty awesome tank who also dishes out massive damage. That is why I went with the Great Sword over the Spear and Shield. I wanted her to be a damage dealer, rather than your more traditional tank who just soaks up the damage but does not dish out a whole lot themselves.

So far it is working. Though the battle with Lord Raedric was kind of touch and go for her for a while. She needed healing from the cleric mid battle, and had to heal herself too. But she never got truly near death.

I also decided to replace Aela with another cleric hireling. It did not feel right for Aela to have a mace and shield and sometimes fight people in melee, which this party needs sometimes. So I created Yemaya, a Coastal Aumaua. She uses a War Bow and Mace + Shield. Her order gets a bonus ability with the Mace, which is why I went with that. She is working out well as the classic cleric, serving up buffs and healing, along with occasional ranged spell attacks and stepping in to fight in melee when there are too many bad guys for the front line fighters to block them all.

What is kind of weird is that since I decided not to use Calisca and Heodan after the tutorial, her party does not have a Rogue. So it wound up falling on January to do all the Thief work, since the other party members naturally have their skills elsewhere. I wound up taking the Scientist background for her when I created her. There was no writer background after all. Dissident was closest, but she's not really a revolutionary, except by merely existing. Besides, I was not thrilled with the skill bonuses for that.


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Acadian
post Apr 22 2020, 01:16 AM
Post #212


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I'm so pleased that January is finding her way in PoE! Transitioning a clearly established character to a new game can be a challenge as you have to work with what the game can provide while trying to stay true to her nature.


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SubRosa
post Apr 27 2020, 09:42 PM
Post #213


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I discovered something interesting today. While you can use the console to give yourself spells, unless you belong to the class that uses them, they won't show up anywhere in the UI. So you cannot cast them. But when I was looking through the prefab files, I noticed that there are many named spellbind_ability. I think these are spell-like effects granted by magic items. These will appear on your UI no matter the class. So you can give yourself these with the console. You can use this to sort of multi-class. I might do this to give January a lightning bolt, or jolting touch spell.


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SubRosa
post May 9 2020, 09:50 PM
Post #214


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Last night I beat PoE like a red-haired stepchild. I had a lot of fun playing January through it as a Paladin.

I also gained a new appreciate for the Barbarian class. I added Maneha to the party near the end, and finally figured out how to use her. I like to have my entire party go into sneak mode with ranged weapons equipped as they travel. When they find the enemy, they sneak up to the edge of stealth mode. Then they all open fire on one bad guy. That usually kills them instantly thanks to the hail of spells, arrows, and crossbow bolts.

The trouble with the Barbarian is their Frenzy ability takes a full turn to activate. So if they fire with everyone else in that opening shot, they just stand there for the next turn activating Frenzy. In the meantime the bad guys are running past them to attack the squishy mages in the rear. Sometimes the battle actually ends before they can even do anything.

The Frenzy ability is of course the whole point of being a Barbarian. Like all other games that have it, it gives big bonuses to physical attributes.

So what I learned is to simply eschew the Barbarian having any ranged weapons at all. Instead they are a pure-melee focus. When everyone else opens fire from stealth, they turn on Frenzy. Since it is the opening action, it takes place just as fast as all the attacks the rest of the party is making. Which is pretty instantaneous. Then the next turn the Barbarian is ready to fight just like everyone else.

The cherry on top is at high level the Barbarian gets a Dragon Leap power. It allows them to instantly leap to any spot in a really long range, and do massive damage when they land on someone. So they can practically teleport across the map once the battle starts and get right in with the bad guys.



Hot wings

Ogre hoedown

Werewolf 2: Electric Boogaloo

Night of the Fishmen

Snow Dragon

It's Bane!

I also imported January's save into Pillars of Eternity II, and rolled her as new toon there


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Acadian
post May 9 2020, 11:20 PM
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I'm glad to see you enjoying PoE. It looks like a worthy successor to BGII and the ilk.


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SubRosa
post May 11 2020, 12:39 AM
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It is a nice way to play the Baldur's Gate games again, without the D&D version 2 rules.

I have been playing Pillars of Eternity 2 for about a day now, and have some observations.

There are more options for speeding up and slowing time during battles now. The little time icon in the gui now has a slider at the bottom, which you can move back and forth incrementally to set it how you like it best. I have it set to one tick from the slowest.

The game also gives you the option of playing it in a true Turn-based mode now, as well as the Real Time Pausable mode from the original. I have not tried Turn-based, since I find I like the RTP.

It is very similar to PoE1 in look and feel. The same races and classes are all there. The same spells. The same perks (which like the original, they call Talents and Abilities, but they are Perks). However, now you can do true multiclassing. When you meet a companion and have them join you, the game gives you the option of what class they will be, with a limited set of options specific to each one. For example, Eder returns as a companion. He was a Fighter in PoE1. You can set him to be a Fighter, Rogue, or Fighter/Rogue in PoE2. Since I am new to the game, I am sticking with the straight classes for now.

Each class now has several subclasses to choose from as well, with different tweaks like specific Perks. I found a mod that adds a Knights of the Storm sublcass for the Paladin, which I originally tried for January. But I was not thrilled with it. It replaced the Paladin's Flames of Devotion attack with an electrical-based copy, which I was fine with. But it also gave a power to turn into an Electrical Elemental, which I don't see myself ever using. But even more so, I learned that there are dialogue options that open up for specific classes and subclasses (which PoE1 did as well). I am thinking if I go with a modded class, I will never get them. So instead I went back and restarted January as a Kind Wayfarer, which she was in PoE1.

As I mentioned before, you can import your final save from PoE1, which that game automatically makes for you now. That carries over your choices from that game to PoE2. But you can also manually set your choices every time you start a character as well. You can even save those sets of choices.

One big change I found is that Perks and spells no longer have a set number of uses Per Rest or Per Encounter as before. Instead they have gone to essentially a power (mana) point system. You start each battle with a set number of Power points based on your level. Every Perk you use costs a set number of points to use. So you can use whichever Perks you like, as often as you like, until you run out of points. This resets with every fight. I like this a lot better than the old way, or how some other games like Dragon Age gave each Perk a cooldown period in which you had to wait to use it again. This way if January wants, she can spam her Flames of Devotion as often as she likes.

Spells are treated exactly like the other Perks now. When you level up a mage or priest picks the same number of spells as a fighter would pick his perks. Likewise, they cost power points to cast the same as regular Perks. So basically, they are Perks. That is a big change from PoE1, where every time a priest leveled they automatically gained all the spells for that new level. I think mages still need grimoires, but I am not positive. Under the new system they seem kind of unnecessary.

The console commands are the same as PoE1, plus some new ones, with a caveat. There is no IEMod for PoE2, and it added several of its own console commands. Like the Jump command, that automatically teleported you to your cursor location. I used that a lot to avoid wasting time backtracking over ground I had already cleared. Now you can use the Ctrl + T command, but you have to do it from the console. Since there is no more IEMod, for any commands to work you have to use the IRoll20s command first to enable cheat mode. Which can be annoying.

The game world is basically the Caribbean, pirates and all. In fact your first encounter is with pirates, almost as soon as you start game proper. Instead of having a stronghold like other games, this time you have a ship. It seems to work like a stronghold you move around the game map. I know you can change ships, and upgrade certain parts of them like the guns. You have to hire a crew, just like you stronghold needed guards. As near as I can tell you have to use the ship to move around the world map to get from island to island. Though once you are on an island, you can move overland on your own.

Speaking of which, moving on the world map is different from PoE1 as well. That was like Baldur's Gate 2, where areas would open up on the world map, you would click on them, and automatically be teleported there to the tactical map of the actual area. PoE2 is more like the original Fallout games, where you have a strategy map that you move a cursor through (with your face on it). You see interesting areas open up as you near them, are blocked by rivers and mountains, etc... You can click on an area of interest to go there and transition to the tactical map for it. Or just bypass it.

So my guess is the way it basically works is you use your ship to travel from one island to another. Then once on the island you use this land-based strategy map to move around from location to location as you explore it. It is actually a lot like the old Pirates games that way, just with better graphics.

Finally, food. Food is no longer an item you eat in or before combat to get buffs. Instead it can only be eaten when you rest in the wilderness. From what I gather, if you don't have food when you rest, you don't get the benefits from resting. If you rest in an inn, it just ignores the food and gives you whatever the inn's bonuses are. Different food items have different bonuses as before. I gather that you select what food each party member uses when you rest, and they get the appropriate bonus.

It also looks like you have to feed your crew now too. I am not exactly sure how that works. But from the hardtack I have found while adventuring, food affects their morale. What their morale means in game mechanics I have no idea. But I do know its better not to feed them hardtack. January was pleased to see that hagfish is an option, and it gives a Resolve bonus. Very appropriate, since in another life her armor is made out of hagfish snot.


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Acadian
post May 11 2020, 01:49 AM
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Very cool initial review of PoE2. Thank you! I am always on the lookout for a game to have in reserve. Who knows, in a few years I may need to move to my next game. tongue.gif


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SubRosa
post May 11 2020, 01:59 AM
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I have seen people mention that mystic archers are a thing in PoE2. I think it is a Ranger/Mage multiclass.

Edit: There is a Ranger subclass called Arcane Archer, that has a special Imbue power, that allows you to fire spells rather than arrows. It does not sound like it works very well at present however.


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SubRosa
post May 11 2020, 05:36 AM
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Something else I noticed about PoE2 is that they streamlined the Health stat. Instead of two stats for health like they had in PoE1, there is just 1 in PoE2, and it fully refreshes at the end of every battle. It is a lot simpler, and a big improvement.

I am still poking around the first island you start on. So far I have met 3 companions. You start the game with Eder (Fighter), then on the island you find Xoti (Priest), and Aloth (Wizard). So Eder and Aloth carry over from PoE1. I think Pallegina is the only other companion from PoE1 that appears in PoE2. But I am not sure where she is.

It also looks like you can hire generic adventurers in the inns, like you could in PoE1.

This game is a lot more moddable than PoE1. Thanks to that, there are a lot more mods out there. I have a ton already. I found one invaluable one called More Spell Castings Per Level, which increases the number of times spellcasters can cast their spells per fight. This brings them into a more even level with the other classes and their perks. I modded it to add a couple more castings.

Most of the game files are basically text. But it is best to use something like Notepad++ to open them, as otherwise they are a literally wall of text. I have been using Visual Studio Code, which works pretty good.


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Acadian
post May 11 2020, 12:32 PM
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Nice to hear that the command console works well and that the game seems quite moddable. What's the best way to get and run the game with minimum 'middlemen'? Can it be purchased/run standalone or does it require something like GoG or Steam?


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