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Dar

1st Spiderweb Game I've stopped playing due to boredom

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Loved all the Avernums, hate Avadon, given up on it during the end game in avadon castle. Never given up on a game at the last stage before, but this game just doesn't give you any incentive to keep taking the overly lethal punishment. Avadon is a game for big time masochists only.

 

Avadon started ok'ish, but the characters didn't appeal. Game picked up in early stages but I felt much too railroaded.

 

End game stages just suck. Duke Castor Oil's missus was way too hard to kill, I'm convinced there's a bug with the spirit wolf and it just doesn't spawn at all a lot of the time.

 

Duke Talkyoutodeath and his fireplace demons was pure tedium to kill and then back to Avadon, on your own, all supplies gone from previous stages with no chance to restock, up against stupidly impossible odds. Only way to proceed a combination of hours of utterly boring load and reload and far too dependent on pure luck.

 

This isn't gaming, it's tedium. The storyline logic is too deeply flawed to play in the true role playing sense from your character's perspective. Never had to use forums before to suss stages of a game. This one feels like the makers actually hate players and want to make the game a misery, weird.

 

Spiderweb loses my automatic buy new game release default mode. I'm going to be very reluctant to buy anything else after this awful Avadon experience. : (

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Playing through something far too difficult isn't usually fun. But is that because the game itself "sucks"? As you will easily find, browsing the forums here, Avadon isn't very hard at all to most people. There are lower difficulty modes, after all, and more than enough skills and loot to make you so powerful you can pretty much sit back and just enjoy the roleplaying experience. If this is not to your liking, perhaps you can tell us why? What are the 'deep flaws' in the storyline logic?

 

You know all these things work together. If you reload for hours just to kill one boss, the end dialogue will not be very satisfying to you. If you don't enjoy the game, you probably haven't really discovered many of Avadon's (very helpful) riches... but then, you know, that's what Demos are for.

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Yeah, I'm sorry to hear that you didn't enjoy it but one of the more common complaints about Avadon has actually been that it's too easy, so if you played through the entire Avernum series I'm quite surprised that you had so much trouble with this game.

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Well, if he's going for achievements, he's likely to be down a party member much of the time and avoiding the easier difficulties. I don't think it's entirely fair to tell someone who's having trouble to just turn down the difficulty when the game punishes you for doing so.

 

Also, could be he went melee like me. I haven't played enough to know how it is for ranged characters, but for melee I've had a very ample challenge just on Normal. Pretty much every major boss fight seems to have mechanics that punish melee characters specifically.

 

It's heartening to hear that someone else had trouble with Antje, though. I'm trying to decide if I want to grind up more levels to beat her or just give up on the run and start from scratch.

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Mm.. I had some issues after returning to Avadon for the last stage. Of course, I was playing with a Sorceress and the enemies loved to run up and get in my very fragile lady's face.

 

I can see where the difficulty might be a put-off, but that's why there's variable settings. I played through on a mix of Hard and Normal the first time and plan on going Hard all the way through the second time.

 

Even if Avadon isn't my favorite game of all time... I think after 15 games that I've thoroughly enjoyed, Jeff has earned enough brownie points to pull $30 from my wallet now and again on a new project. I want him to enjoy making games as much as I enjoy playing them and that means him getting out and doing new things.

 

The proper response, I would think, is not "I'm going to be super hesitant from now on", but "Hey, here's what I found was difficult and these were my settings and, yannow, I shouldn't have to load and reload and reload on X difficulty."

 

Just sayin'... squeaky wheels might get grease, but only because they can't discuss game mechanics and preferences. laugh

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I'm curious what difficulty you're playing on if you thought it took a dramatic jump upward in the end game. I'm only up to the 2nd trip to Dhora Woods right now and entering the wizard's tower, but so far on Hard the game has been really easy compared to Avernum 1 & 2 on Hard. I think I've only used maybe 3 healing potions all game so far and no other consumables. I was just thinking last night when looking at my inventory full of consumables that it's probably a bad sign for game difficulty if you don't need them even on hard. Probably should have gone Torment, but I don't want to risk breaking some achievements by switching difficulty mid-game.

 

If it ramps way up later in the game though, I guess I'll be glad to have them all. Though if that's the case, I'd argue the difficulty should be spread out better, which might be what your OP is about. I'm already level 22 and it'd be weird to see a big difficulty jump this late in the game.

 

My main complaint about Avadon is the linearity. Looking forward to the more open-ended Avernum: Escape from the Pit to see how it fares under the new game engine.

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I have to second it. Avadon was boring compared to the other games and i know what you mean. Avadon had one thing that avernum's first series didnt have (and they were hard). That thing that avadon had was that the battles took way too long and were hard. Compare that to avernum 1-3 plus boa, they were hard but at least you got killed in the first or second round. In avadon you could be in a battle that lasts half an hour to an hour, and lose, only to have to start all over. Ive played avernum 1, boa, they were a joke difficulty-wise compared to avadon.

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Originally Posted By: Death Knight
I have to second it. Avadon was boring compared to the other games and i know what you mean. Avadon had one thing that avernum's first series didnt have (and they were hard). That thing that avadon had was that the battles took way too long and were hard. Compare that to avernum 1-3 plus boa, they were hard but at least you got killed in the first or second round. In avadon you could be in a battle that lasts half an hour to an hour, and lose, only to have to start all over. Ive played avernum 1, boa, they were a joke difficulty-wise compared to avadon.


I really wonder if we've been playing the same games all these years. Maybe it's different for people who don't play on Torment, but I found fights in Avadon to be generally shorter than in previous games; the relative lack of healing means that you have to win fights fast or else you're going to get killed.

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Originally Posted By: Karkadinn
I don't think it's entirely fair to tell someone who's having trouble to just turn down the difficulty when the game punishes you for doing so.

Hear, hear. (And since turning down the difficulty when you get stuck is a good thing, the ideal solution is to not have achievements based on difficulty, except for maybe keeping the "completed the entire game at X difficulty or higher" ones.

Dikiyoba.

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So rewarding someone for managing to do something difficult is now punishing everybody else for not being able to do it? Hasn't that always been the case in video games, with or without achievements? Isn't that half of the entire reason we play them, that it feels rewarding if we manage to pull it off?

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I think the problem with avadon resides in which way you are oriented to play this genre of game. I think avadon appeals mostly to people who like the maths grind of being a character accountant and enjoy doing pre-research of a game through demos and forums and then, with a priori knowledge of what’s to come, strategical constructing the stat build of a character to complete all challenges. There’s nothing wrong with approaching a game in this way but it is the antithesis of how I prefer to play.

 

I like to roleplay. I never play demos, I never usually go to furums until after I’ve completed the main mission once. I don’t want to know in advance what the character wouldn’t know.

 

I like to view the game world exclusively through the eyes of the character. I don’t make ability stat increase decisions from a players’ strategic perspective but from the narrative of events. E.g. if there’s been lots of journeying and damage taken then endurance goes up next, if a lot of riddles or mind oriented activity has just taken place then intelligence goes up next etc. In this game I was forced to pile everything into dexterity and endurance just to survive, and both classes of magic user got intelligence or there was utterly no point to their existence at all. (In fact the shaman class is completely pointless. A sorceress with healing / mind-cleaning scarabs is more use.)

 

The early stages of the game are comparable to avernum in relation to party / npc challenge strengths with the exception that melee meat shields are hugely disadvantaged. However starting at Lady Antje and from there on the bar isn’t just lifted it’s put on a Russian rocket and taken to the international space station for the bosses compared to where you’re party is at.

 

This is a sneaky ranged combat specialists game from day 1 and it never gets better for a sword swinger. That should of suited me down to the ground because I like to play ranger or ninja types, but I couldn’t develop the character or equipment because of shortage of side missions.

 

If avadon started with a main character history of hating redbeard and everything he stood for then I could of played the game differently. As it stands you are a rookie recruit to the SS who wants to join the evil set up, (so at the very start I didn’t have a reason to like or identify even with my own character - not good). All of your companions are loathsome and all you want to do is slit their throats and be rid of them asap - no reason to give them stuff or develop them then.

 

The only true role play logic of a character in your position is to play it by the employers’ book. See every side mission offer as an enemy attempt at subverting you (which they are) and refuse them. This means that you have exhausted the meagre health supplies of avadon and traders and not acquired much in the way of equipment when you are forced to confront the instant death bosses.

 

Avadon punishes you for playing the main mission from the role play perspective of the character. You need to of made a player’s strategic decision before starting out to oppose redbeard and team up with the opposition and take every offer of employment to get anywhere in the game.

 

My main reason for stopping play was not caring about the outcome. Avadon is the SS, the pact nations all deserve to die, the far lands are creeps, your companions should be in coffins and you have no reason to like yourself either. What reason is there to care what happens to any of them?

 

Spiderweb have earned the right to expect me to look at a future game releases with some hope and releases of avernum are a must have but I’ll have nothing more to do with the Avadon series.

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Originally Posted By: Danny the Fool
So rewarding someone for managing to do something difficult is now punishing everybody else for not being able to do it? Hasn't that always been the case in video games, with or without achievements? Isn't that half of the entire reason we play them, that it feels rewarding if we manage to pull it off?


If your options are 'take a path with x rewards' and 'take a path with x-1 rewards,' then yes, I see functionally no difference between that and 'take a path with x+1 rewards' and 'take a path with x rewards.' The difference between rewarding and punishing at that point seems mostly rhetorical to me. As a previous poster has somewhat brought up, though, this can be remedied by the simple expedient of swapping out one reward for an equivalent one, by giving achievements/badges/etc for full completion for each difficulty, instead of reserving some for some difficulties and then giving zilch to the other difficulties. That way everyone gets what they want.

I don't mean to be too negativity-spreading, though. Unlike the OP I'm certainly not bored with the game, even if I have my nitpicks. It's not perfect, but it's definitely close enough to the good old Spiderweb experience to be worth my money and my time.

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Originally Posted By: Dar
I think the problem with avadon resides in which way you are oriented to play this genre of game. I think avadon appeals mostly to people who like the maths grind of being a character accountant and enjoy doing pre-research of a game through demos and forums and then, with a priori knowledge of what’s to come, strategical constructing the stat build of a character to complete all challenges. There’s nothing wrong with approaching a game in this way but it is the antithesis of how I prefer to play.

...etc


I don't know where you're coming from, man. This was the first time I played any of the spiderweb games (saw it on steam), and I still had no problems playing it as a warrior who was loyal to Redbeard and declined all the options for exploitation (I played my character as a very justice-oriented individual, who didn't think much of the potential consequences of allowing law-enforces to accept bribes).

I agree that the final part of the game, where you play alone, was pretty terrible - my character was a tank, and while the enemies didn't kill him, it took 5 minutes to kill just one of them due to all the stuns and knockbacks and such. Other than that, though, I don't understand how you could have a hard time playing the game. I had (I discovered when I visited the forums) very poorly min-maxed characters (for one, I built my "tank" as a damage-dealer, who provided no buffs...), and I never used any consumables except on the last 2-3 bosses.

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I agree with Cattlehunter. I went through the game with a melee blademaster and a melee shadowwalker and alternated between using a sorceress and a shaman in the third slot depending on the task. I wasn't optimized at all, I played on normal difficulty, and while there were challenges, I never found the game horrifically unforgiving. And I too played as an Avadon loyalist for most of the game before deciding to kill Redbeard in disgust (and testing).

 

Yes, I often died in battles. Usually that was a sign that I needed to try different tactics. In some of the later fights it made me rethink my builds, but the presence of a free and convenient way to redo character builds meant that wasn't so bad anyway.

 

You say that it was punishingly hard, and that must have been true for you. That's an anomalous experience, though, and I'm actually really surprised. Were you playing the whole thing on torment? Is getting achievements really that much of a motivator?

 

—Alorael, who thinks your hatred of the story is simply a matter of taste. He didn't like Avadon, but he saw why it existed and what purpose it could and should serve (and was only partially serving). He liked his companions. He thought the choice to try to kill Redbeard and do better or try to improve from within, or even to just shrug and put out a palm to be greased, was interesting.

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I will be frank. After reading and re-reading the OPs statements, to really understand where he's coming from, I can only come to one conclusion - it's arbitrary. A priori, if you will. None of the described "problems" are rooted within the game in any way or fashion, it's that you, Dar, approached the game with a specific set of expectations, and when these weren't met the way you wanted them to, your intellectual negativity started spiraling. I hate to say the words, but I have thought it through quite thoroughly.

 

1. You insist on playing a certain build, which is not working out. You're aware that you can use characters differently in fights, right? A melee meatshield sword-swinger doesn't need to rush towards hordes of enemies and stand around there alone. Maybe headnut the boss. Ever thought of why ranged attacks are considered more useful? Because Avadon's mechanics are far, fare more intelligent than the early Avernums' or Exiles'. You need to understand what your foes are doing and outsmart them. Crowd-control. Name it what you will. This is the kind of analysis you have to do, no "a priori" whatever on the forums, and I'm sorry, but clever fighting is fun and is not necessarily linked to mathematical min-maxing (which I never ever do. Cause I'm a roleplayer.)

 

2. You write 'SS' over Avadon's entire face and then complain the story is too... what exactly? Resentable? People are loathsome? If you had played for long enough to actually get to know your companions, they all are victims in their own, unique ways, and all strive to better themselves and - partly - the world. The purpose of Avadon is peace, and Redbeard's as well. The difficult question, that you as a roleplayer have to decide upon for you character, is not - do I want to be good or evil? But - to what extent is it legitimate to strengthen and protect my own power in order to support my purpose of peace?

 

3. The smaller decisions, like - will I let this or that brigand go for a bribe, or kill him to get his loot? are the finesses of your character. There are many shades and facettes that you can maneuver between, because justice is not an easy concept. You can try to be good and righteous, and ultimately do damage (what's righteous? what's your cause?). But I guess you wouldn't really know about all that since you claimed yourself you don't like reading through all the tedious dialogues. You also wouldn't know that you get plenty of rewards however you choose to be aligned. Usually, all or most options give you something good in return.

Still don't get how you can not possibly like your character from the start when you haven't even started deciding why he/she's there.

 

So what's difficulty? Monsters having more or less HP/attack power than you? Is that the way to go? Or is it possibly a more interesting challenge when the combat is somewhat intelligent (I'm sure it could be made more intellectual somehow as well. Maybe the grand hero in Avadon 2 will be Kant)?

What's an enjoyable storyline? A standardized good vs evil plot in which your very armor gleams with holiness and all villains are born with an evil gene? I'm sure Avadon would've discovered it already. Or is it possibly more enticing to have realistic intricacies in which the needs and interests of the many people and peoples in the game weave together and battle each other?

But maybe I'm deluding myself that my personal preferences and skills somehow produce universally applicable axioms. Oh wait that's not me!

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Originally Posted By: Dar
I like to roleplay. I never play demos, I never usually go to furums until after I’ve completed the main mission once. I don’t want to know in advance what the character wouldn’t know.

I like to view the game world exclusively through the eyes of the character.


Serious question, with no offence intended: why is computer gaming your hobby of choice for getting your roleplaying kick? Why not play actual tabletop RPGs? A group of humans will always be simply better at reacting realistically to your choices than a program containing a set of pregenerated responses to your actions, and in the age of the internet it shouldn't be hard to find a group that suits your playstyle no matter where you live.

Also:

Quote:

My main reason for stopping play was not caring about the outcome. Avadon is the SS, the pact nations all deserve to die, the far lands are creeps, your companions should be in coffins and you have no reason to like yourself either. What reason is there to care what happens to any of them?


For what it's worth, making every character and group unsympathetic to varying degrees was a deliberate decision to set the mood and atmosphere of the game; the goal was to create a world where you know that everyone is basically out for themselves and their own interests, even the people who are helping you at the moment, and anyone who remains loyal to one side is going to get played for a sucker. Clearly it wasn't a decision you like, but Jeff can't please everybody, and there have been other people who have posted about how much they enjoyed this aspect of the game.

Quote:
Avadon punishes you for playing the main mission from the role play perspective of the character. You need to of made a player’s strategic decision before starting out to oppose redbeard and team up with the opposition and take every offer of employment to get anywhere in the game.


Or, you know, just play a character who's corrupt and out for personal gain, like literally everyone else in Avadon is. There's a reason why Redbeard laughs at you if you tell him that you joined Avadon to defend the Pact.

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I'm (slowly) replaying on Torment and finding that it does feel like a completely different game than it did on Hard, and the second time through on Hard (when I jacked mostly middle skills rather than the sides) felt like a completely different game than the first time through on Hard.

 

So yeah, I think we are all playing different games. The tactics are completely different depending on your build and difficulty level.

 

Jeff made a conscious decision to make Avadon a different kind of story — darker — than Avernum, as he mentioned somewhere in this forum. It won't appeal to everyone. If you don't like it, don't buy Avadon games. Buy Avernum and maybe GF games (though GF has its own ambiguities and challenges).

 

I have to say, I assumed that the whole point of the return to Avadon (alone) was to lure the enemies back to the first room where you have two or three helpers, who will take them down. It was a little time-consuming and a little finicky, but not all that hard.

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Originally Posted By: Dar
I think the problem with avadon resides in which way you are oriented to play this genre of game. I think avadon appeals mostly to people who like the maths grind of being a character accountant and enjoy doing pre-research of a game through demos and forums and then, with a priori knowledge of what’s to come, strategical constructing the stat build of a character to complete all challenges. There’s nothing wrong with approaching a game in this way but it is the antithesis of how I prefer to play.


I'm with Cattlehunter and Alorael on this. I have some experience with SW games, but I'm hardly the math and grind player that we can see here. Because I don't min/max every point and I play for the story, I rarely play above normal difficulty. If you want to play on a harder difficulty, you have to min/max the game mechanics, but there is no reason why you can't enjoy the game on a lower difficulty.

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File it under "Your mileage can vary", I guess. Avadon and Geneforge 1 are the only two Spiderweb games I have completed. Largely because they are relatively short, and (to me) the stories were compelling.

 

As for being a minmaxer, I played Avadon on hard and I didn't have to be. I stuck with the same two companions, and took the build options that seemed like the most fun, and it worked out fine. I didn't take on the challenge fights such as Beloch, Redbeard and the blue dragon though.

 

For me the Avadon games were longer than I like, and I lost interest part way through.

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I prefer Geneforge however I dont hate Avadon at all. Two different games but I just feel Geneforge has a bit more icing on the cake.

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I think I have to agree with the above statement about playing a different game on a different difficulty level. My first playthrough on normal was great, I rated the game a B. On my torment playthrough, I rate the game a D. I'm probably going to stop playing, I reload far too often and win battles far to infrequently. I've played geneforge and avernum games on torment before and never had this much difficulty. I haven't even gotten to the difficult fights yet. Unfortunately this good game gets an F in balance. Hopefully this improves in the future.

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Jeff is trying a different way of differentiating the harder difficulty fights other than just multiplying an monster's stats.

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Originally Posted By: Lilith
playing the game on a difficulty called Torment... is difficult? oh no!


Let me clarify Lilith. The game is not difficult on torment, it's unplayable.

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Originally Posted By: Barzhal
Originally Posted By: Lilith
playing the game on a difficulty called Torment... is difficult? oh no!


Let me clarify Lilith. The game is not difficult on torment, it's unplayable.

Maybe for you. Plenty of us enjoy Torment. But it's not for everyone.

Frankly, it's hard to think of a one-word description that would capture this idea ("many people will find it unplayable, but some will enjoy the challenge") better than "Torment".

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Originally Posted By: HOUSE of S
Originally Posted By: Barzhal
Originally Posted By: Lilith
playing the game on a difficulty called Torment... is difficult? oh no!


Let me clarify Lilith. The game is not difficult on torment, it's unplayable.

Maybe for you. Plenty of us enjoy Torment. But it's not for everyone.

Frankly, it's hard to think of a one-word description that would capture this idea ("many people will find it unplayable, but some will enjoy the challenge") better than "Torment".


This statement is probably quite accurate from what I've read on the forums here recently.

I have to question then why the newly added "metals" portion of the game would actually guide or encourage "many people," or in other words many customers, to play an unplayable game. Do you think that was Jeff's strategy for good customer retention?

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How many medals require playing on Torment? A small handful, isn't it? What's wrong with having recognition for people who succeed at extreme challenges? That's like saying they shouldn't have professional sports, because then amateur athletes will get discouraged and quit.

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Originally Posted By: HOUSE of S
How many medals require playing on Torment? A small handful, isn't it? What's wrong with having recognition for people who succeed at extreme challenges? That's like saying they shouldn't have professional sports, because then amateur athletes will get discouraged and quit.


No Slarty, I think the appropriate analogy would be it's like encouraging amateur athletes to compete in professional sports. That, I'm sure, would encourage them to quit.

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Originally Posted By: Slartucker
How many medals require playing on Torment? A small handful, isn't it?

Just one, and then two require hard or above and then four more require normal or above. (Plus any special requirements for the Steam version accomplishments.) Dunno. It seems pretty silly to me. It's one thing for the Steam accomplishments to be based on difficulty because it is, in a way, a multiplayer competition. But the version from SW's site is definitely a single-person, personal game. There's no competition or bragging rights involved. If I just care about getting the shiny medals, why should I have to play on a certain level of difficulty just to get a medal for killing someone or completing the game to the end?

Plus, one of the reasons the difficulty levels are there and switchable in mid-game is that so if you get hopelessly stuck or are no longer having fun, you can turn the difficulty down. It seems counterintuitive to punish people for doing one of the things the difficulty levels were designed to do by removing their ability to recieve certain medals.

Dikiyoba.

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There is only one medal that requires playing on torment. A few require hard or torment. Most are for normal difficulty.

 

There are enough players that like torment and a few that make up challenges like singleton games, no magic, and other requirements because they find torment too easy. smile

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Originally Posted By: Dikiyoba
Plus, one of the reasons the difficulty levels are there and switchable in mid-game is that so if you get hopelessly stuck or are no longer having fun, you can turn the difficulty down. It seems counterintuitive to punish people for doing one of the things the difficulty levels were designed to do by removing their ability to recieve certain medals.

This part I definitely agree with.

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Hey, I have respect for what all the mods claim about the game. I'm sure most of you do find torment easy. In fact, I'm sure there's a strong correlation between being a mod and being a beta tester. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

 

I'm just wondering, are you mods the market for Jeff's games? Is your experience comparable to what the average gamer experiences? I'm pointing this out because it seems as though it's been an issue since Avernum 6. You can discount my opinion (and others, though I don't speak for them), but are you really helping Jeff build a better game? Maybe..I don't know.

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Mods and beta testers aren't the market since beta testers get the games for free. All those buggy versions we get to keep. smile

 

Jeff feels the older beta testers are definitely not the market since most of them like an even harder game that gets released. Beta testers are retained because they keep playing the game and locating all those obscure bugs that you never see. Going through dialog branches and testing what happens for each quest when you have choices on how to end it takes months.

 

Mods are chosen by the admins which since Schrodinger and Drakefyre left means *i with recommendations from the mods. A lot of mods do beta test, but there isn't a correlation.

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Some mods are beta testers. Some mods are not. I think there are more of the latter than the former.

 

Some beta testers are admins. Some are not. I think there are more of the latter than the former.

 

People have complained forever simultaneously that games are too easy and that they're too hard. Jeff's solution has been to make difficulty settings, and to make the easiest setting really easy and the hardest really hard. Some people will still find the easiest setting too hard, and the true hardcore gamers will still grumble about breezing through the hardest difficulty with a deliberately handicapped party. You can't please everyone.

 

Jeff's goal, though, is to make normal enough of a challenge to be fun to most players without it being punishing. The range of players' tolerances for difficulties is wide, and obviously some won't like normal. That's what the easier and harder settings are for.

 

—Alorael, who spent the better part of a decade playing all Spiderweb games on the easiest setting. He has used the character editors for many of them. He still enjoyed them. Now he plays on normal and he doesn't cheat, but he certainly has no desire to try playing on torment. He plays the way that he finds fun, and normal is best for him. It wasn't always, and maybe it won't always be.

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Most mods are not beta testers. Unless I'm totally mistaken, Randomizer and Student of Trinity are the only mods who beta test. Maybe there are others who just don't talk about it, but I only know of those two.

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Tyranicus beta tested for Nethergate: Resurrection, but I don't know if he's continued. Ephesos used to beta test before real life took up his time. I think Lilith has also beta tested.

 

It's hard to tell since not everyone asks to be listed in the credits. A few beta testers like Delicious Vlish and Synergy are no longer mods.

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I've also been a tester for most games recently, with the exception of A6.

 

—Alorael, who hasn't been an exemplary tester always. He tries!

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Originally Posted By: Randomizer
Tyranicus beta tested for Nethergate: Resurrection, but I don't know if he's continued. Ephesos used to beta test before real life took up his time. I think Lilith has also beta tested.


i used to test community-made BoE and BoA scenarios but i've never actually tested a SW game and don't especially intend to

but basically yeah torment is hard because that's the point. if it's unplayable for you, then that's why the lower difficulties exist: other people do play on Torment and enjoy it. do you also complain when you order a meal with five-alarm spice at a restaurant and it's too spicy for you

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Originally Posted By: Lilith
do you also complain when you order a meal with five-alarm spice at a restaurant and it's too spicy for you



Darn Tootin I complain and while it may serve as advertising for the small minority, it also warns the vast majority to keep their money in their pockets and look for other avenues to spend it.

For Jeff: Stop putting saved game file in the windows partition, allow the saved game files to be placed directly in the folder that controls them i.e. D:\Avernum\A6\Saved or some such as that.
No third party data should ever go to an active partition but also no third party data should ever be saved to a folder in which MS is constantly messing with.

For those of you who really want a challenging game and produce scientific research at the same time, try www.fold.it. Great game, great enthusiasm, and great results leading to some recent news-worthy results. Come try it, you might be surprised at how addicting it becomes.

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Originally Posted By: Hanto
Darn Tootin I complain and while it may serve as advertising for the small minority, it also warns the vast majority to keep their money in their pockets and look for other avenues to spend it.


or, y'know, you could just play on a difficulty other than the highest difficulty which is specifically designed to challenge the most experienced players and is called Torment

seriously why is the mere existence of difficulty levels that are too hard for you such an affront? none of the people who play on Torment complain about the existence of Casual

for the record I've tried FoldIt and it's not for me because my spatial reasoning skills are pretty hopeless. but i don't complain that it exists either!

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I'll throw my hat into the ring as someone who is not a beta-tester or a mod/admin, but enjoys torment difficulty. I tend to go for more role-playing my first time through a game, and more min-maxing on subsequent plays. I've found relatively few games (Dragon Age, KotOR, and a couple of the Geneforges) that actually give the player enough choices, and enough meaningful consequences for those choices, to make a focus on role-playing rewarding after the first play. I can see how a commitment to playing a specific personality and archetype, rather than getting the best abilities and loot, would make torment frustrating to outright unplayable. I can only recommend that others do what I do in such a case, i.e. not play on torment.

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Originally Posted By: Hanto
Originally Posted By: Lilith
do you also complain when you order a meal with five-alarm spice at a restaurant and it's too spicy for you



Darn Tootin I complain and while it may serve as advertising for the small minority, it also warns the vast majority to keep their money in their pockets and look for other avenues to spend it.

Wait. You know that you like your food a little spicy, but not immensely spicy. You go to a restaurant and take the option that says, "Pour on all the spicy you've got! Bring it on!" Your meal is too spicy. And you think there's something wrong with the restaurant for offering the option?

I think that's the problem. We have fundamentally different ideas about the value of choices.

—Alorael, who thinks this is the big question: should games have different difficulty levels at all? Can they serve any purpose except angering and alienating customers?

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Originally Posted By: Bottom Feeders
—Alorael, who thinks this is the big question: should games have different difficulty levels at all? Can they serve any purpose except angering and alienating customers?


Ooh, you're onto something here, but I think there's an even more profound issue at stake:

Should there be any games at all? Can games serve any purpose except angering and alienating customers?

laugh

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Well, now that we've had games, there would indeed be angry customers if there were no games. Or at least, there would be angry ex-customers.

 

As for this:

Originally Posted By: Hanto
it may serve as advertising for the small minority, it also warns the vast majority to keep their money in their pockets and look for other avenues to spend it.

There is a reason why restaurants don't offer exclusively five-alarm foods. They recognize that by only putting out one level of intensity in their food, they drastically reduce their customer base. Jeff does the same thing with difficulty. He puts out difficulties so people of different skills can all enjoy the game. I don't know if you're offended that torment is too hard for you or what, but I don't really understand why it's an issue.

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It's funny. When I first downloaded the demo, I wasn't all that excited by the game. Then I played a bit more. Then I bought the game and now I've tried each character class and gone to the end with two of them. I find it a sufficiently entertaining game, but then I like to replay to test out different tactics and strategies. Playing with all magic users (remarkably easy on Normal difficulty until you start to hit too many magic-resistant foes), using the various knockback spells/skills to herd opponents into easy AoE death circles.

 

In the end, to each his own. If you think you should be able to breeze through the game on its hardest difficulty level and the game should make you feel like the high holy one for saving the world from ultimate evil, you're probably in the wrong place. I have only played Avadon and Avernum 6 from Spiderweb, and I find that Jeff isn't interested in making black-and-white stories. I also don't think of Avadon as the SS, since one of the revelations in the end game section puts an interesting spin on the most heinous series of missions.

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The Avernum/Exile games are the most black and white games in terms of moral choices because there are so few. Geneforge games are all shades of grey because there is no one side that is completely good or bad. Avadon is meant to show you all bad choices, but gives you the opportunities to fix some of them if you want to play helping people.

 

Avadon, being a new game engine crafted atop the Geneforge engine, has balance flaws. While you can play almost any type of party at the harder difficulties you are forced to do certain things to make the game easier to play. Role playing doesn't work as well when you are trying to avoid dying every combat.

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Complaining that higher difficulty levels are too hard is a perfectly human thing to do. Look, nobody likes to admit they are not as skilled as others at things they enjoy doing whether it be sports, singing, or computer games.

 

When someone joins the intramural league for experts and finds out they cannot keep up and are not having a good time, it's a whole lot easier to blame the other players for being too aggressive and unsportsmanlike than it is to say that they aren't quite as skilled.

 

Same applies here. Most people don't want to admit they aren't superstars at playing the kinds of computer games they normally would enjoy. As such, we see plenty of rationalizing about the game being too tedious, the monsters having too much power, etc. Again, it's far easier to complain than it is to admit defeat and lower the difficulty level and resume.

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