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TM Paladin

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Everything posted by TM Paladin

  1. I just googled. Good synthesizer music. Whoa. Nice stuff Tim.
  2. The whole item list and equipment mechanics are very different from Exile, so it's hard to compare individual items and shop lists. But the "random selection" shops that could have amazing top-tier magic items for sale are definitely not a thing anymore. It's just fixed inventory for all merchants now.
  3. ADoS, friendly suggestion. When you are feeling stressed out in general, and get frustrated with someone, might be worth taking it up with them privately. After somebody requests that the thread stay on topic, that's probably not the best time to air a personal grievance either. But since that's where things have gone, it's probably time for this thread to close.
  4. And forgetting the legal concerns, this is ethically extremely problematic. We're not talking about a mechanical file format conversion here, we're talking about manually making choices about whether or not and how to edit other people's work. Without their consent. These sorts of suggestions, that are so toxic but come from the mouth of the project, keep other people away from this development project.
  5. Yeah, this is still a creative idea that would unfortunately cause a lot of problems in practice.
  6. The LP probably mixed them up because that second cave, to the east, also has a Vahnatai reference in it. The rest of the map is presumably there for because the Exile display, and the Magic Map spell, both mean you can see parts of it despite not being able to reach them.
  7. Hi Mike Lata, Welcome back to the forums! If your previous posts here were many years ago, they may have become disconnected from your account when we switched forum software. If they were really old, they may have been wiped at some point. Meanwhile, a friendly request from the mods: forums don't work well when used as chat rooms; please use the edit button to add to your post, rather than making five in a row. (I've hidden some of the extras.) Thanks!
  8. Yes, very good point about planning. Geneforge offers divergent strategies with widely differing rates of return. If you pick efficient creations (it's not usually obvious which these are) and make a bunch of them, you steamroll things even on Torment. You get a more consistent challenge running e.g. a solo Agent. Avadon 1 and Avernum 6 are maybe the least susceptible to optimizing characters, in general: you can make things easier but there will still be challenging bits. (Avadon 2 and 3 come close, but are beyond clobbered by the Tinkermages.)
  9. The way people experience it has a lot to do with how they build their characters and parties. I'd agree with your assessment though -- with a somewhat optimized build, on Torment, easiest to hardest -- Geneforge, First Avernum Trilogy remakes, Second Avernum Trilogy, Avadon. Queen's Wish is somewhere in the middle as well. The early game can actually be challenging on Torment, but once you build up some resources and levels and start taking advantage of key mechanics, it's a lot easier. I'd slot it in with the Second Avernum Trilogy.
  10. OK, so small details relating to Rentar and the Abyss. I mean, all Spiderweb games have small choices like that in addition to the major choices of faction and goal and so on. Even the First Trilogy had some little details like that -- choosing whether or not to kill each of the Dragons, for example. But the faction-choice games have plenty of those as well. I admit that I am totally confused by the assertion that it's impossible to be a hero in Avadon or in Queen's Wish. Totally not true. "Hero" might be more nuanced than in A1-4, but it's certainlynot any more nuanced than it is in, say, Geneforge, where you're causing one or more factions to get massacred no matter what you do. G3 and G4 in particular deliberately have nothing resembling a real heroic ending.
  11. I wasn't going to attack A4, but you're kind of asking me to with a comment like this. What exactly are the decisions and choices? I don't even care about "engaging" -- were they any meaningful choices that I have just forgotten about?
  12. This is good advice, though I think by "older game" you really just mean "First Trilogy." The change is less a trend and more a punctuated shift that happened in 1997. Every non-remake SW game released since late 1997 has had explicit mechanics for "who do you want to side with / what kind of hero do you want to be" running through the whole game, with the sole exception of A4 (2005). Granted, the 1995-1997 trilogy has been re-made twice. But A4 is the only "you're just the hero" story Jeff has written in the last 22 years.
  13. Yeah, but it's not very hard to find different evasion and accuracy numbers on enemies, and it's even easier to create them on yourself (change equips/skills). I mean, go for it, just seems like a lot of trouble. Setting one to zero won't reduce anything to you-only-need-one-test status, since there are very possibly default hit numbers -- not listed in the defs files -- that start out in the middle.
  14. I mean, some version of that exploit exists no matter what map system you use. (And it doesn't really matter, but I do not understand how in the world "what it did to Exile's geography" can possibly be describing a combat/healing exploit....)
  15. I don't think we're talking about the same thing. I'm talking about the fact that Blosk and Dharmon were basically five feet away from each other in A4, and so on.
  16. Yeah, I agree with Alo -- there's room to "fix" the Rentar-Ihrno plot. It's not completely crazy that she attacked Avernum directly, and at least one of the mechanisms she used was very interesting (the Shades, lifted from Ultima though they may have been). If she (and perhaps Glantris-Bok or another associate) had received actual character development, that would help. If her involvement wasn't presented as an incredibly insulting "mystery" with the most boring and obvious answer, that would help. If there was actual intrigue, because, say, she herself was involved with the Darkside Loyalists, or because the Olgai tribe sent an envoy who could actually speak human and wasn't jarringly huge, that would help. If Starrus had actual characterization, and presented a coherent personality as an opposing force, that would help too. But there are some small-plot elements that would also help redeem things. A lot of minor characters from the First Trilogy appeared in A4, and many of them just sort of... butchered, or completely ignored, their past characterizations. (Yong-Mi, you will be avenged!) Now, the continuous map and what it did to Exile's geography is a bigger problem, but A6 somehow handled that a lot better than A4 did, so perhaps that wouldn't be too terrible to fix, either.
  17. Which is fine, but none of that in any way supports not only assuming one of multiple plausible theories is true, but presenting it as repeatable fact. Many aspects of the game aren't hard to mod. Combat formulas are not one of those aspects. Testing could be done, but I'm not sure modding would make that any easier or harder.
  18. This in no way requires there to be two different rolls. It could easily be set up so that a different message is displayed depending on what the roll result is. Say there's a base hit chance of 80%, a to-hit bonus of +10% and an evasion score of 20%. You might get: 1-70: hit 71-90: dodge 91-00: miss As I've said before, I'm happy to acknowledge that the issue is ambiguous. My problem is with stating that it is two rolls with the same definitiveness that we talk about other game mechanics that we do have a pretty conclusive understanding of. We've had issues with urban legends about game mechanics before: remember the "invisible -36% Torment armor penalty" that turns out to never have existed, but that we all thought was a thing for years, in part because it was presented so confidently? That led to a lot of counterproductive advice being given out.
  19. Hit chance and evasion are almost certainly ONE CHECK. It has been one check in every other Spiderweb game ever released. Base hit chance + all hit bonuses - all evasion bonuses. Clearly, dodging happens more often in this game, and that has led some people to conclude that there are two different checks. But other changes could lead to the same behavior. And while Jeff hasn't addressed this directly, other things he's written strongly imply that it's just one check. On Steam he wrote, answering a player who wanted to "lower enemies evasion": "Most enemies should have a pretty low evasion, and there are a lot of items that increase hit chance." That's far more conclusive than anything anyone has said to support this "two checks" hypothesis. Please stop presenting it as fact. It's not.
  20. Yup. That's a thing, and is one of the biggest reasons singletons were so popular in those days.
  21. Are you in a fort? You can only change your skill setup (which includes using new skill pts from levelling up) when in a fort.
  22. Congrats on getting it this far! What does the mod do?
  23. TM Paladin

    Easter Eggs

    Thanks for the attempt to "both sides" this but you're comparing apples and oranges. You are demanding a very specific interpretation, with no evidence. I'm saying that interpretation doesn't fit, because it's very specific and there's no evidence. This is not a situation where we throw up our hands and say "who knows, it's 50/50 who's right." Basically all of that is inaccurate. And I'm now done arguing about it.
  24. TM Paladin

    Easter Eggs

    I strongly disagree about the intentionality here. I don't really want to argue it ad nauseam. You're imagining a way it could have happened, acknowledging that there is no evidence for it happening that way, and basically just declaring that you think it's most likely because... I have no idea why. I also don't know why you're analyzing the dialogue data in terms of the BoE interface given that the high likelihood that the data was compiled either (a) directly with ResEdit or another resource editor, or (b) in a word processor. The Goosnargh reference is really interesting. I've been trying and trying to connect Sastor to anything relevant, but haven't managed to.
  25. TM Paladin

    Easter Eggs

    They key thing linking Waldby and Goosenargh is that the "fish" response is in exactly the same place in their dialogue data -- at the end. It just looks like it defaulted there for whatever reason (quite plausible as a copy-paste accident, especially with the likelihood that an interface like ResEdit was used to compile some of this text; and I think the chance that Jeff kept 150 different text files for all the town dialogue, given that the engine did not use that structure, is close to zero), and Waldby didn't end up with quite enough sets of dialogue to overwrite it. The coding is similar, but Goosenargh has a hardcoded reaction for that keyword (i.e., you get different responses depending on a flag) while Waldby does not. There's zero evidence of intent here. It's not a joke, not a reference. And as you point out, functionality already existed to get a new set of items with a keypress. So I have a hard time seeing this as an intentional easter egg, rather than basically just a typo. It's certainly plausible that passing on 'skulls' was intended to offer a reward. That would only strengthen the case that it is not intended for 'fish' to have that effect. Since what 'fish' triggers is clearly not an easter egg when it is triggered in the remakes. Furthermore, the "second shop" in both remakes is not accessed by the word 'fish' or anything related in any way to fish. This is to be contrasted with all the actual easter eggs, references, and in-jokes, that were overwhelmingly left in the remakes; see also easter eggs whose form changed but whose trigger remained the same.
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