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Author Topic: [PC] Blackguards (turn-based tactical strategy/RPG)  (Read 1940 times)
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Blackjack
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« on: January 27, 2014, 06:14:26 PM »

Official site (German developer Daedalic Entertainment):
http://www.daedalic.de/en/game/Blackguards
Quote
About the Game
What happens when the only hope of a threatened world lies not with heroes in shining armor, but in the hands of a band of misfits and criminals? Blackguards, a new turn-based strategy RPG, explores this very question. You will discover over 180 unique hex-based battlegrounds within a dark and mature story of crime, drugs, and murder.

Play as a warrior, mage or hunter and customize your character's skills as you see fit. The challenging campaign delivers a story of doubt, treason and loss. You decide the course of the story at key turning points and determine its outcome.

Key Features
More than 180 unique battlemaps provide ever-evolving and novel challenges.
Make sure you have plenty of snacks, as this dark fantasy adventure has 40+ hours of exciting play time.
Lead up to five characters in your party to glorious victory or devastating defeat.
Enjoy enchanting hand drawn backdrops. They're beautiful even when your party members get their asses handed to them.
Your choice of spells, skills and abilities determine your battlefield tactics. Aggressive? Defensive? Tactical? It's your call how to tackle each challenging encounter!
Use interactive objects like bee hives or barrels to your advantage in combat, or blow yourself up by carrying a torch into flammable swamp gas.
Dish out some serious damage with 40 special abilities and more than 90 spells... or find yourself on the other end and get obliterated.
You can try a playable demo on Steam. I would say that the full games' maps eventually become larger, downright massive at times (though they vary the size/layouts quite a bit). As I recall, the demo has some early maps where the grids are very tiny.

I bought this on Steam while it was in Early Access, and it just released the other day. It's generally more hexagon-grid turn-based strategy battles than RPG.

I wasn't initially enjoying it, but when I finally restarted the campaign for maybe the fourth time with my main set up as a Hunter (bows and spears), it finally "clicked" with me. I put in almost 17 hours in it over the weekend and have generally had a very good time.

What I initially found intimidating is understanding how to distribute the "adventure points" (you can use them on four different tab fulls of abilities, skills, talents, arms talents). And also what constitutes a "level" vs. what's just the number rating for something. Still not fully sure I understand all that in spite of the game's many optional tutorial screens.

Also, for a long time I felt like I couldn't get more than crap equipment. This proved troublesome when I made my main a warrior as the first couple party members you get are preset as a dwarf warrior and a mage. You could of course remake those into something else moving forward but it seems like a waste of their initial set up (I don't know any way to "respec" from zero). It seemed like a hunter or perhaps a 2nd mage was a better compliment to those first couple you get.

Later in the campaign, fully developed heroes join your party, including:
Spoiler for Hiden:
-a female hunter that has points in bows and spears, and can cast a variety of buff/debuff spells
-a male hunter who seems very spear-specific and seems equipped for dual wield melee too
-a poison-focused spellcaster comes into play, but I'm not clear if she becomes a regular party member per se.
You can choose advanced customization so that you can start your main hero from scratch. I think the lack of that option was a bone of contention during early access.

As far as the battle maps go, while the character models to me seem so-so, the battle maps are hand drawn and pretty cool. Later on, when you fight beasts and animals, imho those character models are nicer than the human ones for some reason.

You can scroll your mouse wheel back to get more of a top-down view (the default view is a sort of zoomed in isometric view), which makes the battle map look like, well, Panzer General.  icon_smile

While the game autosaves after most battles, it does encourage you to save and quicksave often. While you can use rest on the main towns map, or pay to rest at an inn to restore health/astral (mana) points, the campaign eventually starts chaining battles together (sometimes as many as 3 in succession), which I've found straining since you can't pull stuff out of your party's loot inventory during a battle. So if you limp through the finale of a multi-battle map battle, you'll be in dire straights in the next connected one.

I can vouch that at least for me the game has been rock solid reliable over 17 hours of play (no crashes, lockups, freezes etc.). It's not what I'd call an eye candy game so if you need that, then don't bother with it. If you're into turn-based, chess-like strategy battles that are varied and generally don't take too long (except maybe on the ones with the invulnerable, enemy-healing crystals - don't get me started  icon_razz), you may dig this. I just warn that the interface (despite tutorials) was at least for me awfully intimidating and confusing for a while.

As far as the RPG aspects, there's a lot of chatty conversations between battles but it's easy enough to click through all that.

Anyway, blah, blah, blah. If it interests anybody, ask me any questions.  icon_smile
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 06:24:11 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2014, 06:51:07 PM »

Funny I was just reading about this late last night.  Looks like it would be right up my alley.

Couple of questions off the top of my head:

- are there combat bonuses to having multiple people positioned around an enemy?

- are the protagonist characters limited to the 5 they show on the website?  you mention a "main" character, do you get some choice as to what he/she looks like if you go for advanced customization, or is your "main hero" pretty much fixed (sounds like you can choose which of the 3 classes you want for it)?  It's not a big deal but all 5 of the characters just seemed kind of unappealing to me.
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« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2014, 09:00:20 PM »

Quote from: rittchard on January 27, 2014, 06:51:07 PM

Funny I was just reading about this late last night.  Looks like it would be right up my alley.

Couple of questions off the top of my head:

- are there combat bonuses to having multiple people positioned around an enemy?

- are the protagonist characters limited to the 5 they show on the website?  you mention a "main" character, do you get some choice as to what he/she looks like if you go for advanced customization, or is your "main hero" pretty much fixed (sounds like you can choose which of the 3 classes you want for it)?  It's not a big deal but all 5 of the characters just seemed kind of unappealing to me.
As far as bonuses or flanking bonuses (as in XCOM Enemy Unknown), I really don't know. I will try to look into that tonight and see what I find out.

Spears can attack from two hexes away, bows seem to have bonuses based on hex range (like between 3 and 8 hexes, something like that). I don't really have any awesome melee or bow skills just yet; eventually you can fire a salvo of arrows, or hit muliple hexes in melee I think.

There's a neat "opportunity attack" any character can eventually learn. This basically lets you take a free, automatic-attack at any enemy as they move by you on a turn. I have a tough time avoiding this because I just don't think enough about my movement route.

One difference from, say, XCOM Enemy Unknown is you can move hexes in baby steps without "consuming" your movement turn. Like, if you have a movement radius of about 8 hexes (radius you can move, and still perform an attack or action), you can move two hexes one way, move two hexes another way, one hex another way, etc. It's not, "oh you moved two hexes and stopped, now your movement turn is over." This becomes critical on later maps that sprinkle spike traps everywhere, and don't give you a "straight line" movement opportunity.

Your party gradually grows from 3 initially (including your "main") to 5, possibly more. I met one character that only got to play with for one mini-mission (my main and this other character), and I'm not clear on if this other character might join my party at some point.

The reason why I de-emphasize RPG is you really don't fully customize cosmetic appearances in this, beyond hairstyle (for your main) and how different armor/weaponry looks. I haven't yet tried the "advanced" choice for the main character so I don't yet know if that includes more extensive cosmetic changes. This is a bone of contention for some in forums.

I just don't worry about it much, as intricate visual customizing is not something I'm used to doing in tactical squad-type strategy games. Eventually the armor variety in this at least allows different looks and you can cover up someone's head with a helmet if you don't like the face.  icon_smile The storyline is based on all these characters by name (my "Ricky Ranger" name tends to look silly by the other characters' more eloquent names  icon_razz), so it makes sense to me they don't appear to allow name customizing beyond your main hero.

I'll share some screenshots later. I would say the game's animations and backdrops tend to look cooler to me than the character models (though the tiger character models later as enemies seem very cool.).
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 09:06:18 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2014, 01:34:03 AM »

A few pics:

As I mentioned, the screens where you distribute Adventure Points can be a bit intimidating. "I do what, to do what? What?"  icon_razz
While Niam is ostensibly a mage, she's basically a hybrid hunter/mage with some decent bow/spear skills and some useful buffs/debuffs on the spellcasting side.

The little shield and sword icons indicate if you want a melee weapon to be more towards parrying, more towards attacking, or balanced in between.

These optional tutorial screens are gradually spread through the game to gradually teach you stuff. Useful, but I kind of wish I could pop them back on screen at will for reference (maybe you can).


While it's hexagon rather than square grid (XCOM Enemy Unknown), the principle is sort of the same -- the brighter hexes indicate where you can move and still attack or use an item; the lighter ones indicate where you can move to but no longer take an action. However, as I mentioned, you can move a few hexes one way, then decide to move a different way etc. without using up your turn. You can also choose to "wait" on a turn to let another character move.


An archer (Hunter>Bows) is less effective at melee range so it pays to kind of plop them in a spot where they can reach enemies but not be reached with melee attacks.
The one thing that bugs me about all the character cards at the bottom is I would really like all the friendlies (often you fight alongside AI-controlled characters, guards etc.) on the LEFT side and the enemies on the right. I understand maybe they feel like that'd clutter the screen but I don't like having them all mashed up on the left side, eventually all mixed up in terms of enemies and friendlies.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 01:37:45 AM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2014, 03:37:36 AM »

Thanks for the write up Blackjack. I downloaded the demo, but haven't tried it yet. Read some of the reviews and the forums as well, it sounds a little rough around the edges. Curious if the devs are working  and smoothing things out (better tutorial, bugs, interface issues).
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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2014, 04:24:00 AM »

Quote from: Lee on January 28, 2014, 03:37:36 AM

Thanks for the write up Blackjack. I downloaded the demo, but haven't tried it yet. Read some of the reviews and the forums as well, it sounds a little rough around the edges. Curious if the devs are working  and smoothing things out (better tutorial, bugs, interface issues).
I really can't think of any bugs I've encountered at this point. Well there are enemy BUGs in the game.  icon_razz

imho the tutorial splash screens are OK, but some way to manually pull them back on screen would be nice. And maybe a tutorial that was more animated/integrated into the game (that is, some blinking arrow pointing at a screen button and telling you to click it, rather than a static tutorial image screen) might be more helpful.

For my part, I just am NOT a fan of linking 3 straight battle maps and giving you no respite for healing or buying potions etc. I'm finding the game does this more and more often in the campaign. While the battles are never crazy long, the fact is you can't save during them at all. So connecting 3 means if you get sick of the third one and quit, next time you'll just have to start it all over again. And if someone dies on one connected map, then on the next one they start with exactly 1 HP.

Actually this in keeping with German games I've liked going back to Blue Byte's Incubation in 1997 -- they just seem to really like kicking your teeth in on difficulty sometimes.

I can say they keep it fresh with the environmental damage stuff. Just played one that had this Rube Goldberg like series of rotating, basically flamethrowers. I didn't even know what I was doing and somehow they rotated just right to incinerate enough of the enemies to give me a chance.

If I have any advice on buying equipment in this it's buy every single damn potion you can get your hands on and equip as many as you can if you even suspect (you don't really get hints) you're going to start in on a three-consecutive-map series of battles. Then you'll have a fighting chance. Alas, I blew all mine by the 2nd one most recently and by the third one I was simply toast.

I really do dig the game but I feel like I can only recommend to folks with a masochistic streak.  icon_smile What's interesting though is how often the environmental stuff and traps can make a map much easier than it looks at first glance. Or I had this one that involved three massive beasts that could mash my heroes into the ground practically. It looked hopeless but after a few replays, my battered (it was one of those "on the 2nd of 3 battle map deals, or maybe it was on the 3rd of 3 maps) party staggered through it. Often the game rewards everyone focusing on one target while trying to stay out of range of others.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 04:27:02 AM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2014, 05:09:24 PM »

Strategy Informer weighs in, mostly displeased (6/10) though like me they basically say you'll either love this or you'll hate it. I'm not sure there's much in between.  icon_neutral

http://www.strategyinformer.com/pc/blackguards/2283/review.html
Quote
Blackguards is a game that either has been built for you or it hasnít. There arenít many games that I struggle to review because I personally didnít get on with it and yet I know that itís built for a very specific sub-set of player, but Blackguards was definitely one. I was attracted to the game by the description of it as an RPG with turn-based combat based on The Dark Eye universe.

After two enjoyable adventures set in Germanyís answer to D&D I was looking forward to seeing what Daedalic could do with the more naturally-fitting genre for a fantasy role-playing tabletop set. What I didnít expect was for Blackguards to be all combat. Itís basically a board game.
...
The turn-based combat, as mentioned, is the entire thrust of the game. Thereís no exploring, very little choice, no talking things out, if you click somewhere on the map 99% of the time youíll get a combat encounter. You have got to ask yourself right now if this is what you want from an RPG. While you occasionally have choices to make there are no consequences so thereís very little actual role-playing, itís all either going into battle or preparing for your next battle. Again, if youíre happy with this then great, fair play to you. I personally found that the whole game got very tedious very fast.
I don't disagree. But I think that's why this game should be categorized as a tough, challenging tactical strategy game, NOT as an RPG. This reviewer clearly wants something other than the game delivers though it seems a little odd that Strategy Informer has a guy who wants more RPG than strategy from Blackguards.  confused

From an expectations standpoint if you want an RPG you should run away from this game imho. OTOH, if challenging, varied turn-based squad-size battles on hexagon maps to the point of exhaustion at times thrill you, this could be your game. But, maybe wait for a deeper cost-cutting sale. icon_smile Then when you get exasperated, you won't go "Damn Blackjack! Convinced me to waste $XX on this crap!"

By varied, I mean that the game might have your party of five battling 10 enemies on one map (with the environmental damage/trap opportunities evening things up); or you might have your main hero going in a one on one dual with a baddie on a small map; or you might have to choose two of your party members to duel two specific enemies; or you may have your full party battling a giant creature who looks like he can squash you like a grape (hint, don't assume you need to kill a huge enemy "to win").

So I guess you could argue the combat is ever present and repetitive in terms of the game having so much of it; but for me, there's a good variety/diversity in the sizes of maps, the sizes of the forces involved (yours/theirs), the traps and/or environmental damage opps on the map etc.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 05:18:18 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2014, 06:18:34 PM »

Along the same lines as BJ mentioned, it was interesting the only review on the Mac App store was a 1-star bitching that the game was too linear and not a real RPG with grinding, etc.  It seemed fairly clear to me that this is much more along the lines of a Strategy/Tactics (FFT) game as opposed to a more generic RPG. 

Anyway, I tried the demo last night and liked what I saw.  To answer my own earlier question, you do get to choose the sex and class of your "main" character, and there are 5 choices of visual look for anyone who cares about that stuff.

The custom creation is definitely daunting and a little confusing, you get something like 9000 points to play with, and there are so many choices it's crazy.  I think it's following along religiously with whatever pen and paper system it was from, which I'm sure fans really appreciate.  For more casual players the system is a bit too much, but certainly I appreciate the customization potential.
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« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2014, 06:48:59 PM »

Quote from: rittchard on January 29, 2014, 06:18:34 PM

Along the same lines as BJ mentioned, it was interesting the only review on the Mac App store was a 1-star bitching that the game was too linear and not a real RPG with grinding, etc.  It seemed fairly clear to me that this is much more along the lines of a Strategy/Tactics (FFT) game as opposed to a more generic RPG.  

Anyway, I tried the demo last night and liked what I saw.  To answer my own earlier question, you do get to choose the sex and class of your "main" character, and there are 5 choices of visual look for anyone who cares about that stuff.

The custom creation is definitely daunting and a little confusing, you get something like 9000 points to play with, and there are so many choices it's crazy.  I think it's following along religiously with whatever pen and paper system it was from, which I'm sure fans really appreciate.  For more casual players the system is a bit too much, but certainly I appreciate the customization potential.
Ah, right about the sexes, I missed that, sorry. In fact, I restarted AGAIN, with a female warrior.  Fabulous

I'm still not clear about the numbers for the weapons abilities. I mean, if I'm 14 at one hand swords and 11 at two hand swords, I have no idea how that translate into effectiveness, % chance to hit, dmg, no clue. For me the game's missing a certain info layer to support us in making good choices. I mean, I can keep pouring points into a certain melee weapon ability, but it never seems to improve my % hit chance so I still do a lot of exasperating missing. Maybe that should go into Agility or Strength or whatever, but if so, I still don't understand what points into the weapons accomplishes.

While the main quest stuff is pretty much straight line, there are some side quests of note. I apparently missed this entire Dragon thing where you eventually track down a nice weapon that your dwarf is fond of (good but not great, no special attributes per se). There was some temple side quests thing involving multiple locations but my Hunter couldn't find a way over to that side of the world map.

And another map where you click on chests to get loot (you want to hold off clearing the map until you click on all the chests), I just realized last night I had missed one chest there with my other character.

I will say I'm not a big fan of the "louse," crab-like enemies. Not much fun to fight and some maps just drown you in those things which can get tedious in a turn-based game esp. when chances are, only your mage has an AOE attack that can whittle large bunches to size.

What I'm trying to do on latest replay is to see whether I can pile up enough potions, perhaps traps, to get through the brutal mid section of the game. Which is, trying not to spoiler things, about a 9 battles (intermissions after sets of 3) marathon. I need to figure out some way to stockpile either potions or just plain cash so that I'm not staggering through that. Also, I'm trying the "Easy" difficulty mode though I haven't seen a dramatic change from how it played at normal.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2014, 06:58:07 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2014, 06:50:55 PM »

With the female warrior on the Easy campaign level it seems a bit less frustrating to me. I'm also gradually grasping a bit of the prerequisites for "learning" skills with the trainers (ones with the "graduation cap icon"). This requires looking pretty closely at the skill descriptions to look for red things that indicate you don't yet meet a certain prerequisite.

So at least the Dwarf and my gal each have Knockdown melee attacks now, and the Hunter (bows/spears) you get later on has finally learned a second bow attack.

I am back on that seemingly endless Gladiator set of battle maps now. It's really just the final couple I'm worried about in terms of running out of astral energy (mana) and health potions and what not. Turns out I'm only in Chapter 2 of the campaign so there's so much of the game I've yet to reach.
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« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2014, 05:56:07 PM »

Me: "So you're still stuck on that Louse with the crab lice creatures?"
Myself: "Yes. What the hell am I supposed to do on #9 of the 9 hordes?"
I: "I checked YouTube, and a walkthrough video from beta suggested you should be more aggressive on that map and try to reach the "lice portals" to put the lids on them. Of course, we had already exited the game in disgust by that point."
Me: "Damn. I feel pretty stupid now. It'd be nice if it'd let you save your game after doing the first 8 maps of the Hordes sequence."
Myself: "Also, those little goblets you didn't think were of any importance? Scattered all over some maps w/ no explanation?"
I: "Yeah?"
Myself: "According to that YouTube walkthrough video, you CLICK on a goblet to get a 15hp HEAL!!!! As often as you want. Note these differ from the larger goblets that on some maps dump a sort of lava flow."
I: "Oh ****. Once again, this game doesn't give you enough information to even know what's available."
Me: "OK, great. Why are we still playing this damn thing? Steam says we have 32 freaking hours on it!"
Myself: "We like to... punish ourselves."  icon_razz
« Last Edit: February 06, 2014, 06:01:18 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2014, 10:50:45 PM »

You might want to go outside and make sure you can still stand the sunlight.  Also, I think Purge has something of yours.   slywink
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« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2014, 01:57:37 PM »

When you're left talking about a game alone, you have to be imaginative.  smirk

And, thank ye gods, the video walkthrough tip worked. Our long national lice nightmare is over! Cabbage Patch I also forgot the "V" key highlights any environmental stuff you can interact with it.

I sent all my party members on beelines to "lice portals" to close them, used the "healing goblets" a bit, and the map I was stuck on really wasn't very hard at all, I just didn't understand what it wanted me to DO.

I do question having the very next battle map be...
Spoiler for Hiden:
more lice.  retard

And it's frustrating the storyline requires you:
Spoiler for Hiden:
lose the hunter/buffer mage who joined your party

Screenshot below, I don't think it spoils anything - I'd rather folks not get stuck on it and ticked off like I did just out of lack of understanding it. Just know if you reach this map, go after the "lice portals" immediately, don't sit around trying to bug-fight.  icon_razz Using the "healing goblets" if you need to. You might keep one member in the vicinity of the "damsel in distress" just in a case a stray lice tries to go over and nibble her.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2014, 02:00:48 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2014, 08:16:28 PM »

Quote from: Blackjack on February 06, 2014, 05:56:07 PM

Me: "So you're still stuck on that Louse with the crab lice creatures?"
Myself: "Yes. What the hell am I supposed to do on #9 of the 9 hordes?"
I: "I checked YouTube, and a walkthrough video from beta suggested you should be more aggressive on that map and try to reach the "lice portals" to put the lids on them. Of course, we had already exited the game in disgust by that point."
Me: "Damn. I feel pretty stupid now. It'd be nice if it'd let you save your game after doing the first 8 maps of the Hordes sequence."
Myself: "Also, those little goblets you didn't think were of any importance? Scattered all over some maps w/ no explanation?"
I: "Yeah?"
Myself: "According to that YouTube walkthrough video, you CLICK on a goblet to get a 15hp HEAL!!!! As often as you want. Note these differ from the larger goblets that on some maps dump a sort of lava flow."
I: "Oh ****. Once again, this game doesn't give you enough information to even know what's available."
Me: "OK, great. Why are we still playing this damn thing? Steam says we have 32 freaking hours on it!"
Myself: "We like to... punish ourselves."  icon_razz

Where is Irene?
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« Reply #14 on: February 10, 2014, 05:47:04 PM »

For what it's worth, once you get past the 9-battle map (intermissions after each 3) gladiator stuff and "win your freedom," the next chapter on the world map opens up quite a bit. Lots more side quests, and lots of things you can tackle in different orders, and far fewer, grueling "3 battle maps in a row with no break" stuff.

I definitely have found Easy mode more enjoyable, still challenging.

Learned a few things:
-L18 is the max number for weapons talents.
-The magic skill to remove poison is invaluable but you need a lot of points in it to successfully remove level 2, 3 higher poison effects.
-I got frustrated trying to remember what towns have a healer, a trainer etc. so I've started scribbling lists of that. I think it mighta helped to list certain icons by towns on the world map. Same thing with some of the quests -- like they'll tell you to return to so-and-so to turn something in but include no info on what town to return to; so I might scribble up a list of towns and the NPCs in each. I've looked online and the only fan wiki I've seen doesn't have that level of helpful detail.

-Certain chapter 3 and later enemies are 100% resistant to certain things. Like skeletons are immune to poison damage, zombies are immune to piercing damage (includes arrows, fencing swords and spears) etc. Probably something's immune to fire damage but haven't run into it yet.

Once you realize this, it pays to specialize certain party members into a backup weapon or alternate magic attack specialty (like a spear guy might want to pick up maces [bashing dmg] or swords [slashing dmg]; a poison-mage might pick up at least one lightning or fire attack). Otherwise, you risk in certain battles that a character might not be able to do ANY damage at all and become essentially useless attack-wise though a mage type could at least do some buff/debuff spells instead.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2014, 05:52:18 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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Blackjack
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« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2014, 05:38:45 AM »

fwiw, I finally posted a review/guarded recommendation on Steam after passing the 50 hour play mark:
http://steamcommunity.com/profiles/76561197970358346/recommended/

A bit rambling, stream of conscious. Per my habits. icon_smile I did try to go in depth on what I love, and summarize some things that drive me crazy in the game too.

Daedelic outlineds its plans for a major 1.3 patch that sounds like it will revamp much of the game to address various concerns and complaints. A cynic would probably ask why they didn't figure all that out during Early Access. But better late than never. I've thoroughly enjoyed it after some initial exasperation - and much of the changes in 1.3 should address that.

Our intentions for Patch 1.3:
http://steamcommunity.com/games/blackguards/announcements/detail/1802867319172107404
Quote
Hi Blackguards players,

with the help of a lot of very good feedback from you - thanks for that - we have decided for some changes we would like to make to the game with next patch. Our impressions are that the communication of the ruleset / understanding the rules, being able to make choices based on detailed feedback and some re-balancing are what the game would benefit the most from.

Thus, you will see some bigger alterations to the gameplay with the next major patch 1.3. The most important of those are:

Hit chances will now always be visible.
By everyone and against everyone. With every ability. - This is inteded to allow you to make better choices at any time and no longer have to guess what you hit chances are, no matter if you skilled 'Warcraft' or 'Animal Lore' or not. Those talents will be reworked accordingly to give better passive stats against opponents of the corresponding type, so that investing AP into them will still be worth it.

A mouse-over text will show you whether a certain character is still able to parry in this turn or if the parry is already gone. Blue = can parry. Red = can't parry. - It's a very important game mechanic that a character is only able to parry once a turn. Characters who cannot parry are only able to evade, which is in most cases less likely to succeed. Exploiting this mechanic allows for a much more tactical approach in battle, so it should help you to have a better overview on who's more vulnerable right now.

Detailed battle log.
- You'll be able to optionally activate a 'verbose' kind of battle log that will show you the dice rolls the game made, so you are able to investigate in retrospective what exactly worked and what did not. Based on that feedback you should be able to make better skill and item choices for you characters.

Skill (talents, spells, abilities) descriptions will be reworked to show the exact benefits and disadvantages.
- This is yet another change to allow you to make better choices, especially before investing AP into a certain skill, but also when using one.

More clear item descriptions, better comparability.
- The way item stats are shown will get a complete overhaul to allow for better stat comparison and understanding.

Autosaves between follow-up battles.
- It was often requested that saving the game between two follow-up battles should be possible. We'll adress this by auto-saving the game before any battle now.
  
Equipment changes in flashback fights.
- Some players mentioned that flashback fights were really tough because they didn't get the equipment their characters we're skilled for. This will be solved by granting players the needed skills and weapons temporarily.

   Reworked skills
 - Alongside the changes to the talents 'Warcraft' and 'Animal Lore', the abolish poison spell 'Clarum Purum' is too weak because poison can simply be applied again and again if the attacker hits, forcing the caster to cast 'Clarum Purum' again and again to no significant avail. 'Clarum Purum' will thus be reworked to grant posion immunity for some turns, based on the spell's level.

 Some balancing changes regarding items and spells.
- We'll provide details in the patch changelog.

We're sure you'll like the upcoming patch. We cannot say when the patch will hit at the moment, but stay tuned as we will announce it once we know for sure.

Thanks for your feedback and, most of all, playing Blackguards!
Io for the Blackguards Team
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« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2014, 06:03:22 AM »

I meant to share some character portrait pix. imho the armor by about chapter 3 gets pretty cool and if you can save up the dough, you can get some cool looking armor sets:

Cavalry Armor set (w/ a "shell" shield)


same w/ 2 hand, back side


Kuslikian lamellar set (don't ask me to spell it again!  icon_razz)

*The armor sets usually don't require more than 4-5 pieces so sometimes you can mix another type in and still have a set - in this case the chain mail headgear. Kuslikian is crazy expensive, and I don't even know if it's worth it, just wanted to get the pieces together.  icon_smile
*This Hunter belt (4 storage slots) is crazy expensive at vendors (50), and hard to find. I wanted Takate to have it as he's the only character I'd funneled some points into the traps usage talent. Also good for mages, as they just don't ever have too many astral potions.

Bosparan set


same w/ 2 hand weapon

*The set helmet is available either as "Karima's Helmet," which includes this bronze face mask; or as Bosparan Bronze helmet, which doesn't mask the character's face.

All the above sets are metallic so you probably wouldn't equip mage types with it as it hinders their Astral (mana) regeneration ability. My two mages use a pretty motley mix of cloth and leather clothing stuff.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2014, 06:08:27 AM by Blackjack » Logged

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-Grim Dawn
-Gauntlet (4 player co-op dungeon arcade brawling)
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