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Damp Annals

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Everything posted by Damp Annals

  1. Melee was already viable. (It just wasn't optimal.) The servile makes it better. See the thread I originally linked for a lot of discussion of how it does so.
  2. What? I definitely didn't say melee was optimal in G4. It's a better option in G4 than G3 entirely because of the existence of the Servile. Damage dice for melee weapons are d4 and d5 in all of G3-5, IIRC. The best game for melee is easily G2, because melee dice are still d8, and Parry is so OP (and therefore the Guardian). It's also good in G1, where you get the d8's, you get Anatomy, and importantly, there are very few magic spells, making magic a lot weaker.
  3. Uh. When it comes to attacking from a distance, it is 100% sub-optimal, because magic. As you yourself say at the end of this quote... This is obviously an advantage over melee, but magic has the same advantage over melee.
  4. There isn't a soft cap for battle magic (well, except in G1 when everything had soft caps). The diminishing returns are because each point in battle magic adds a static amount (1 die) to an attack damage pool that starts out larger, the higher your battle magic is (+ spellcraft). Going to from 4 battle magic to 5 is going to make a much bigger difference proportionally than going from 24 to 25. With mental magic on the other hand, each point is just a flat +5 (I think) to the % chance of success. Since enemy resistance is subtractive and also increases with their level, increasing MM is just as relevant later in the game (at higher MM + spellcraft) as it is earlier in the game. Anything is viable... but if you want to know what's optimal, missiles are sub-optimal. Compared to melee, they don't benefit from Quick Action. Compared to magic, they don't benefit from the investment in magic skills that every character is going to make. They also have the disadvantage that you want to save your best missiles for when you really need them, so most of the time you aren't attacking at peak effectiveness. This is especially true with the very best stuff -- Reaper Thorns and the like are good enough to compete with melee and magic, but they are too rare to use very often.
  5. How does a missile agent run out of spell energy? The description "missile agent" doesn't make it sound like you're casting spells all the time... For Infilitrator magic splits, you can pretty much play it any of those ways. Personally I find that pumping Mental Magic makes more of a difference, since you experience diminishing returns with Battle Magic. YMMV. For Spellcraft vs specific magic skills, even if you're only pumping one specific skill, you'll generally want to increase both and favor whichever is cheaper. Magic-attackers don't really need a secondary attack type, because Firebolt is so incredibly cheap.
  6. Mental magic is still potentially useful. 15 battle magic is an extreme waste of skill points in a character who relies on melee for damage. If you're going heavy magic, you do not need more damage types. You already get multiple types from spells. And there are vanishingly few enemies that don't have less damage reduction in at least one easily accessible magic element than they do in physical damage. The thing is that while it sounds useful to have that versatility, your damage output with your "secondary" attack type will end up being pretty puny compared to your regular attack type. So even if resistances favor it against a certain enemy, it's rarely if ever going to do more damage in the end.
  7. http://spiderwebforums.ipbhost.com/topic/9361-slartanalysis-classes/ What it boils down to is that if you're playing a melee-based character, while you'll obviously still use magic, you don't need huge magic scores. So the servile's other strengths are actually relevant in that scenario.
  8. Years and years ago when Exile was regularly discussed here, singletons were a very common preference among regulars. Honestly, I'm not sure I've used a party in any Exile game this millenium. Haste cheese is a thing, but Bless brokenness is even stronger and more absurd, and it's a lot simpler to do that with a singleton -- in addition to all the other conveniences of not juggling six characters. Not having to pass a bunch of times in a row every time you're fighting in a corridor (or just have nothing to do with your mages when they're conserving SP), etc. The thing that really irked me about parties in Exile, personally, was the XP imbalance that always became quite heavy if any characters were better or worse at dealing damage. Your utility/archer PC, for example -- a sensible enough idea -- is likely to level half as quickly (if that) as the blaster mage or the lead fighter. And then that just compounds the difference in effectiveness, since the already weaker character gets fewer skill points to play with...
  9. Also, the actual combat mechanics behind the numbers are completely different in each of the three incarnations. And as you've probably figured out by now, there are indeed three: Exile Avernum (remakes of Exile) Avernum Remakes (remakes of Avernum) It varies. Before the modern set of remakes, this was often discussed. Most people had a preference for one of the other but few hated either. Often (though not always) this was a preference for whichever one a person had played first, developed an attachment to and nostalgia for, etc. A lot of this boils down to macro questions like how you feel about top-down versus isometric graphics, how much you care about having an enormous list of weird niche spells, whether you prefer combat mechanics that feel very vaguely AD&D or very vaguely modern CRPG. Each incarnation definitely has a distinct visual style, with Exile being particularly distinct. The modern remakes are definitely the most polished of the bunch, particularly in terms of user interface. Lots of people love them. Some of us still prefer the older games, though I'm not sure I've heard anyone say they like both older incarnations better than the most recent one. (There's also Avernum 4-6, which are the continuation of the story, so to speak, and fall sort of in between Avernum and the Avernum remakes in terms of how they play -- although they have some other differences, too, which is why I didn't include them above. Also, they've never been remade.)
  10. I'm not sure what you could have done to make Sick Boy leave. Unless an exceptionally long amount of days have passed and you haven't taken care of the roaches, and you got unlucky with a random attack (though even then I'm not sure how possible that is in Shayder). I do remember him being a bit hard to spot, and I think he's pretty mobile. What's your day counter at?
  11. For point 1, you also have to set the value back to zero on any items that import the item by specification (rather than simply by coming after it in the file). This can be very easy to miss! For point 2, while I don't dispute the QoL improvement, that has some very real effects on the game: it's much easier to be stealthy and avoid fights, and movement in fights is sometimes affected in strange ways, because some parts of the game are hardcoded to expect lower walk speed values. I've seen your characters essentially get double the normal movement range in battle, though I don't remember if that was G3 or another game. Anyway, ultimately it makes the game easier, so just bear that in mind.
  12. Yes, this is why I agree that the G3 protagonist is probably the best fit. What the lack of concreteness means -- and the lack of any facts contradicting numerous possible alternatives -- is that it's the best fit among many possible fits. It's a theory that you asked for feedback about and are earnestly defending. Which is great! But you don't then get to say hey, it's just my opinion, stop making logical arguments about it And you certainly don't get to say that you want each individual to "agree or disagree" based on your long write-up, but not based on the criticism offered by others. (Which, maybe is not what you're actually asking for here? If I'm misinterpreting, please correct...)
  13. "For all you know" is pretty idiomatically clear. It's not even a random stab in the dark. It's explicitly not an attempt at remembering something. It means: "You have no idea, it could be anything, it could even be this random extreme, it could be this other random extreme, etc." What are you talking about? Khyryk doesn't have to die in G3 even as played by the player, and canonically, he doesn't die in G3. This is not a conflict of facts. Look, I just think you are jumping to conclusions. Sage Lara, for example. I certainly agree that her description would fit a previous PC, and this is obvious enough that I'm even willing to call it suggestive. But you assert her description "doesn't exactly leave room open for it to be anyone other then" a previous PC, which is nonsense. This war lasted for years and spanned a continent. No doubt there were more than two people who found themselves at critical junctures, with the ability to influence what would come to pass. And no doubt some of those people were heavily modified. Yes, the previous PCs come to mind quickly, but it's 100% plausible that there are other people who also fit that description. In fact, given how much both sides seem to enjoy creating lifecrafters and powering them up quickly, once the war gets started, I'd be pretty surprised if there weren't any others.
  14. Since you wrote asking for my opinion... Although I too see the G3 protagonist as the simplest possible fit, there is a fair bit here that I disagree with. 1) You state at a certain point "the following is my theory" but what you said prior to that is also theoretical. It's one way G3 can play out, but it's definitely not established as canon. 2) Although I agree that the G3 protagonist is the simplest possible fit for "became massively corrupted" plus "gets strong reactions from Greta, Alwan, and Litalia" especially in the context of what they have to say, independently, about the G3 protagonist... the G4 protagonist also fits those things relatively well... and surely there are numerous other shapers and lifecrafters who also had some interaction will all three of those central figures. 3) I'm not even going to get into the "Red Skull Tesseract" theory except to say that it is appropriate you have chosen to use a reboot that butchered the original story to describe this, um, unexpected theory
  15. Um, nothing is indicated about what the G3 PC does later, so absence of evidence really isn't evidence of absence, here. I'm so sick of these type of arguments. There are numerous examples of where no achievable ending to a GF game perfectly fits what happens between it and the following game. It is extremely clear that Jeff does not simply pick an ending and cleave to it. So even in cases where one ending seems to largely fit, there's absolutely no reason to assume that any details that aren't referenced in future games (like what the PC did) actually played out they way they would have if you the player achieved that ending. I don't expect you to include arguments in favor of the G3 PC when you're arguing for the G4 PC, but your conclusion is quite a jump, since it relies entirely on assumptions about the ending of another game. The clearest evidence, IMO, is in the comments Greta and Alwan make about what ultimately happened to the G3 PC -- which I note does not line up with any of the G3 endings, not really. There are no similar comments made about the G4 PC, I don't think. (See, look, actual evidence, not absence of evidence.) Of course it's possible that both the G3 and G4 PCs went down that path of craziness, but if that were the case it wouldn't really make either more plausible than the other.
  16. I'm with alhoon. I have it as pretty solid headcanon that the G3 PC is the G5 PC. Makes more sense than anything else, and nothing really makes it not make sense.
  17. Definitely cool that we are finally getting closer to these remakes. And it sounds like you have just created the thread you are hoping for! Strategy Central may not be the right place to advertise something that has nothing to do with strategy, but an update thread could certainly be stickied or something. I guess updates will probably start popping up regularly by the end of the year.
  18. Huh, definitely weird that it runs the first two games but not this one. Major detail you left out: what does "having trouble running" it actually mean? Will it open? Does it crash? Are the graphics or performance stuttery? Do you get error messages? Have you tried running it directly from File Explorer (so no Steam involvement or Steam overlay)? etc., etc.
  19. Yeah, I agree with that take. Having lots of item slots works when there is meaningfully different functionality between them. But when every slot just has variations on "a teeny percentile increase to defense, one or two mild stat bonuses if it's a magic item, and maybe an even less relevant tiny boost to one elemental resist" that doesn't make for interesting choices.
  20. Every creature in the game resists energy damage. What you mean is that there are very few that have bonus resistance to energy beyond what all creatures are assigned based on their level. And because automatic elemental resistance increases more slowly than automatic armor, the advantage in dealing energy damage is actually greater against higher level enemies, not just enemies with higher bonus armor. That's OK for blunt weapons balancewise, I guess. I do think it's kinda weird thematically. If I'm thinking about bludgeoning weapons versus armor, I wouldn't expect a mace to be relatively more useful against dragons, archmages, or vampires... (Also, do you really mean only scale with base stats? Wouldn't they scale with everything except Melee Weapons (which I presume you removed from their ability)? This includes level, which factors into all damage formulas, as well as all % bonuses to melee damage. At low levels 10 points in Melee Weapons can make a big difference but at high levels, when a fighter will have 30+ natural Strength and another 25-30 levels of damage from level/str traits/item level, missing out on those 10 points amounts to more like a 15% penalty.) (EDIT: Wait, I didn't see that you had them scaling with Endurance instead. At high levels that will just about make up for the Melee Weapons points even with no manual investment in Endurance. I don't see much of a penalty anymore.)
  21. The skill system just makes me happy. And the dialogue engine. And Pearlblossom. Though I do enjoy the new content in N:R, too.
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