Spotlight #1: Character Creation

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Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by phimseto » July 9th, 2018, 8:25 am

In this spotlight video, we walk you through the character creation process for your party members. Take a look at the link below!

https://youtu.be/6EPyq61TAA8

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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by thebruce » July 9th, 2018, 8:44 am

I'm letting it sink in. :P

That comment with the elf, about living for hundreds of years so excels in the arcane arts, thus getting... 1 extra spell point for battle... *IRK*.
I know that's because of the self-contained battle mechanic adopted from other trendy "modern" game styles like Heartstone as opposed to the way BT classic encouraged resource management skills over the long term with prep for spontaneous combat a part of that, but .. it still makes me cringe as such a drastic departure from the original combat mechanic. Not sure I'll ever get over that change -> in the context of a BT sequel (an important point).
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Zombra » July 9th, 2018, 10:30 am

Well, remember that we don't have hundreds of points here. When the average mage has 2 spell points, +1 is a big deal :)
What were the mechanics for elves in the original game? Honest question, the only thing I remember about races is slight stat bonuses/penalties maybe?

--------------------

I liked the video. Still adjusting to not having more and finer grain stats, but the race/class ahem culture/archetype decisions do seem very substantial, consistent with the "card game" design ethos.

Looking forward to checking out the voice and portrait selections. They did the right thing here and "unlocked" voice sets! so you can have a Stoic Assassin or a Righteous Sorcerer. I expect a lot of sets to choose from.

Also looking forward to a better look at skill trees. The glimpse here is enticing. I notice one culture has the special ability of +3 skill points. I wonder how many points a typical character will have over the course of the game. Building my 'deck' of abilities should be fun.

Oh, and on a superficial note, the graphics for the 'paper dolls' are fantastic - much improved from what we saw in the alpha/demo. Looking really good.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by thebruce » July 9th, 2018, 2:02 pm

IIRC, SP and HP boosts on leveling up were affected by Intelligence and Constitution stats and race/class... I'd love to know the math behind how various stats were bumped and by how much, but from what I recall Elves began with more Intelligence and gained SP much quicker.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by lefty1117 » July 9th, 2018, 3:07 pm

It's jarring, this look at the game. But we have to remember that it's 30 years ... 30 years of game design evolution and changes in audience taste. Perhaps if there had been interim releases over the years this game wouldn't seem like such a departure. I'm more concerned about the move away from some of the original lore ... yeah it was a bit of a "kitchen sink" approach but no hobbits, no half elves, no half orcs, no gnomes ... if too much of the lore is missing, combined with drastically different gameplay it's just not going to feel like the successor to the originals. Either stay true to original gameplay, or stay true to original lore - if one of those is missing I think you'll still be able to hold on to most of the original fanbase, but if both are missing? Hmm

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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by thebruce » July 9th, 2018, 3:51 pm

"30 years of game design evolution"
Which doesn't necessarily apply to this genre which is not inherently or fundamentally reliant on high technology, and entirely depends on the game design that's being "left behind". What is "evolution", and what is simply a shift in trends? If the latter, it can come back (which, honestly, is what many of us were believing the game was striving to do)


"and changes in audience taste"
This would be the biggest hurdle. But this is more about what sells to a current target demographic than leaving behind something "out of date".

Once again (I've no shame in being a broken record on this), I don't think anyone is sincerely saying this is going to be a "bad game", only that it's falling short of what many classic fans would consider a faithful sequel - even after 30 years. I do hope it sells. And I do hope it is a good game on its own merits. I come across critical quite often, but it's the BT fan in me that's the loudest when it comes to a BT sequel :)
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by _noblesse_oblige_ » July 9th, 2018, 4:37 pm

thebruce wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 2:02 pm
IIRC, SP and HP boosts on leveling up were affected by Intelligence and Constitution stats and race/class... I'd love to know the math behind how various stats were bumped and by how much, but from what I recall Elves began with more Intelligence and gained SP much quicker.
As I recall from BT1, Con bonuses were at 15 (+1 HP), 16 (+2 HP), 17 (+3 HP), 18 (+4 HP). Base HP gains were determined by class: Conjurer/Magician (1d4), Monk/Rogue/Sorcerer/Wizard (1d8), Warrior/Paladin/Bard/Hunter (1d16). Likewise, Int bonuses followed a similar progression on top of a base 1d4. To the best of my knowledge, race only affected starting stat shifts but played no role afterwards. If Elves and Gnomes seemed to gain SP faster, it was because of their good starting Int most likely (which may be what you were saying - if so, I'm just saying it a different way :).
Last edited by _noblesse_oblige_ on July 9th, 2018, 6:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by _noblesse_oblige_ » July 9th, 2018, 4:41 pm

thebruce wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 3:51 pm
"30 years of game design evolution"
Which doesn't necessarily apply to this genre which is not inherently or fundamentally reliant on high technology, and entirely depends on the game design that's being "left behind". What is "evolution", and what is simply a shift in trends? If the latter, it can come back (which, honestly, is what many of us were believing the game was striving to do)
Yes. As usual, there will be people who conflate evolution of technology with genre-shifting of game play mechanics. And, people who think that they (or inXile) can simply fast-forward 30 years of so-called "evolution" are talking about radical departure not evolution.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Drool » July 9th, 2018, 5:57 pm

Only 4 classes.

Only 4 races.

Sigh.

As I figured, 99% of the customization is in the massively oversized skill system. That, incidentally, didn't take any lessons from WL2, so still has skills divided across numerous tabs with no way of seeing everything available at a glance.

I'm really not even sure what this makes me think of. I know it's supposed to have drawn inspiration from Hearthstone, but I don't see it. It's almost like the freakish offspring of Paths of Exile and Kingdoms of Amalur.
lefty1117 wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 3:07 pm
30 years of game design evolution and changes in audience taste.
Except this was supposed to be an old school sequel made, and funded, by old school players who want an old school game.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by lefty1117 » July 9th, 2018, 6:19 pm

Look, I'm not going to get into defending what has been done so far. My point was to remind everyone that the game design and consumer tastes have changed quite a bit over the years. I wager yours has as well, even if you don't realize it. I went back and looked at the Kickstarter and nowhere did they say they are making a game that plays exactly like the Bard's Tale III did. In fact, as far as I can tell, what has been shown so far is in keeping with the Kickstarter promises. That doesn't mean I'm completely happy or that none of us should have concerns. But a reminder to keep perspective. My own view is simply make a game that plays a lot like the original, or make a game that has a different design but hangs on to the lore and atmosphere of the originals. If they don't do either then I think they're way off course.

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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Zombra » July 9th, 2018, 9:45 pm

thebruce wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 2:02 pm
IIRC, SP and HP boosts on leveling up were affected by Intelligence and Constitution stats and race/class... I'd love to know the math behind how various stats were bumped and by how much, but from what I recall Elves began with more Intelligence and gained SP much quicker.
I gotta say then, a substantial SP boost here seems very in keeping with the originals. We're not used to one point being substantial, but it is!
Drool wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 5:57 pm
Only 4 classes.
Only 4 races.
Mehhh. Forgive me for stating the obvious, but archetypes and classes aren't the same thing. Your Sorcerer specialists and your Magician specialists are going to be distinct - quite likely more distinct than they were in the original games. And that goes for all the subclasses for all the archetypes.

As for races, well, what is a race? Is it the cosmetics? Would you be satisfied if they put fangs on the Einarr and called him a half-orc? There are seven cultures, each with a unique ability - in gameplay terms that's seven races. I'd like to see gnomes and hobbits too, but this seems like a complaint on the level of "I prefer my whipped cream topping swirled counterclockwise".
Drool wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 5:57 pm
As I figured, 99% of the customization is in the massively oversized skill system. That, incidentally, didn't take any lessons from WL2, so still has skills divided across numerous tabs with no way of seeing everything available at a glance.
Good point. What happened to the skill screen that shows us the whole archetype?

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Is this gone?
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Crosmando » July 10th, 2018, 2:14 am

Well this was disappointing, the video didn't show all the sub-classes that we were told each archetype would have. I believe they said each would have 3 per archetype, meaning we would get 12 total classes. In the video, after they choose class it just goes straight to the skill tree and theres no sub-classes to be seen.

Seems to be not even close to PoE2 which has 11 base classes, even more subclasses for each class, plus multiclassing! It seems I was very much wrong, I thought that Obsidian was going in the direction of casualization and InXile for more complexity, but it seems the opposite is happening.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Zombra » July 10th, 2018, 3:20 am

Crosmando wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 2:14 am
Well this was disappointing, the video didn't show all the sub-classes that we were told each archetype would have. I believe they said each would have 3 per archetype, meaning we would get 12 total classes. In the video, after they choose class it just goes straight to the skill tree and theres no sub-classes to be seen.
Eh? The subclasses are right there. The two Fighter subclasses shown are Defender and Champion. The Character Progression kickstarter update from July 2016 showed Defender, Vanguard, Veteran, Commander, Champion (that may have changed meanwhile of course).

We know the Practicioner subclasses: Conjurer, Magician, Sorcerer, Wizard, Archmage. Says so right in the video.

We know 2/6 of the Bard subclasses from the recent Bard spotlight: Brew Master and Rabble Rouser.

We don't know anything about the Rogue subclasses. Mysterious! But even if Rogue only has as few as 4 subclasses, that's 20 total.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by thebruce » July 10th, 2018, 5:55 am

I think what's not quite sitting right with me on the class issue is that we now have 'sub-classes' that aren't THAT much different from each other. Or at least don't seem that way. eg, they're all bards, but they just specialize in something slightly different. As opposed to the classes where each class seemed much more distinct, and if there was anything "sub" about classes it was purely in how I played that character, not in a label and channeled selection of abilities within that main class. Again, not knocking the concept, but why can't I just have a bard or a fighter, and have them strategize their actions within that greater realm?

I realize this is way down the line of development and don't expect much if anything to happen in response, but I think I'm just putting my finger on what bugs in (in the Bard's Tale brand context) about the skill system we see.

I'm not too concerned about the label switch from race and class to culture and archetype; structurally that seems fairly similar. It's just the skill improvement and subclass system that irks me (from that BT-sequel perspective).
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Gizmo » July 10th, 2018, 7:04 am

It is just ridiculous to make a Bard's Tale sequel and not stick to the gameplay tenets. If this was the secret plan, then why not call it Bard-Stone instead of Bard's Tale? (Which it rather obviously isn't.) :?

We have the same problem repeated here as with FO3; in that the only people to whom the name matters, are the ones who expect the proper gameplay. The rest (those they have designed this new game to please)... don't care what it's called, and have no incentive from the Bard's Tale labeling.

......And didn't fund it! :evil:

Such a simple task, overcomplicated by the desire to sell it to those who don't want it; by tainting it with trendy fad mechanics, in the hopes of luring them to it. A proper Bard's Tale 4 could have been made with Game Maker, and on a relative shoe-string budget; with the principle art work being fantastic paintings of a par with their concept art for WL2. Part of the point with being grid-based, is that the maps (and the entire gameworld) are abstracted... and don't need to be photo-real.

**Myself, I would have been elated if they had licensed the Grimrock II engine for BT4, and gave it a BT style UI, and combat mechanics. Doable with Lua scripts, but even better with edits to the source code.

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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by PsychicMonk » July 10th, 2018, 9:15 am

I really hope that Monks are still in the game...
In my opinion the characters now look even more like they came straight out of BT 2004 cover/concept art and
the Fighter scratching his back with his sword (stupid squealing sound included) at 1:06 is another example of unfitting BT2004 comedy...

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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Gizmo » July 10th, 2018, 9:29 am

PsychicMonk wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 9:15 am
...unfitting BT2004 comedy...
There is a scene in the film Moonwalkers, where Ron Perlman's character offers a case full of money to a director to film a short (believable) Moon-landing. The man takes the money, and the next thing we see is him planning to spice it up with alien jellyfish costumes, and wild colorful planets drawn in the background, and all manner of artistic license, when what the man wanted was spelled out when he gave him the money.

(A believable Moon-landing; something that all the embelishments would ruin.)

This is how I see things are progressing for BT4. :(

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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by thebruce » July 10th, 2018, 9:39 am

The latching on to Bard/Beer/Drinking/Merriment is infiltrating our ranks. Can we do a party attack and kill it off?
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Zombra » July 10th, 2018, 10:58 am

thebruce wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 5:55 am
I think what's not quite sitting right with me on the class issue is that we now have 'sub-classes' that aren't THAT much different from each other. Or at least don't seem that way. eg, they're all bards, but they just specialize in something slightly different. As opposed to the classes where each class seemed much more distinct, and if there was anything "sub" about classes it was purely in how I played that character, not in a label and channeled selection of abilities within that main class.
Don't disagree here. They're not "really" different classes, "just" different branches of a skill tree.

BUT. I think the different branches of the tree will indeed have substantial impact on how they play. Like the Guardian "ultimate" power we see in the video, Guardians absorb 50% of damage to adjacent allies, that is a huge, game-changing power. What defined a Hunter in the original games? Critical hits, right? Other than that a Hunter wasn't THAT much different from another fighter. So we'll see a big critical hit "ultimate" at the end of the Rogue→Hunter branch which will make them distinct from other Rogues - not every Rogue can afford that power - plus there will be other little abilities and decisions that set them apart even more.

So the archetypes may "feel" like "just 4 classes" ... but in reality there is going to be a lot more choice on what your characters actually are. I don't see how anyone could find that disappointing unless they just don't like party building. I counted 76 different abilities in the Fighter skill tree.
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Re: Spotlight #1: Character Creation

Post by Gizmo » July 10th, 2018, 11:31 am

Zombra wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 10:58 am
...
Babs Bunny used to say, "Do you like my ears up, or down?".

It's just a shuffling of skills. I've seen other games the do the same (always a disappointment); just pick your skills and call it a class. It supports a master, novice, jack of trades PC, and if you keep getting skill points (as some games do), you end up with homogenized masters all.

One of the aspects of fantasy/medieval settings is that of trade craft; secret trade craft. You couldn't even get taught unless you were accepted.... and they might refuse those with ties to a rival guild. The modern notion of free choice of education in that setting (where everything is an art) has always been an insurmountable peeve for me. A class represents what the individual was taught... perhaps even before they were old enough to choose. It usually represents their aptitudes and aspirations. Better would have been unique classes that advance in their own ways; and obviously the seperate mage classes, and the Arch Mage.

The Disciples series (oft suggested) has dozens of unique classes, each with special abilities and contributions to the party. The entire game is about party building; and the player can have as many parties as they can afford. The combat is conceptually the same as BT4. In King's Bounty every monster/NPC is its own class, with class abilities. The PC has three skill trees, but they also are one of three different classes.

Classes in this sense, affect the PC's scope of advancement regardless of development... PCs' of different classes will be different even with the same skill choices. Skill shuffling simply presents the same base potential with each character.


Throne of Darkness comes to mind here. That game has seven classes, and they all get the same skill tree (IIRC), but their classes make a difference for each, and with how you play each of them.

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