As mush as I enjoyed Torchlight, I wanted to mention something that bugged me about the difficulty. The difficulty curve on normal is relatively flat for most of the game, with a slight ramp up in challenge, until the very end. Without getting into spoilers, the last 4 levels were like having cold water thrown in my face, waking me up from being lulled into a false sense of ease and comfort for 30 levels. I actually had to use the health and mana potions I had been diligently accumulating and replacing with better versions over the course of the game.
The final confrontation is unlike any other boss battle in the game, and is more akin to a WoW boss battle than any of the previous boss fights encountered along the way. Without getting into details or spoiling it, I will just say, head into that battle expecting a long fight.
I enjoyed Torchlight. I finished the game twice, once as a vanquisher and once as an alchemist. Total time for each run through was about 12 hours, which is a nice pace from start to finish. I thought the loot drops were good and plentiful. Between both characters I ended up with a shared stash full of set pieces and unique items. I stopped picking up white loot about halfway into the game.
The story was goofy, but I was actually surprised by the quality of the voiceacting for a <$20 game. If you don't like action rpgs with lots of loot, inventory management, and skill progression, or find those things tedious, this isn't for you. If you enjoyed TQ, Diablo2, or Fable, this should be a nobrainer at its current price. There is a lot of value stuffed into this game for the price. $5 is absurd. I paid $19.99 and felt like I got twice that cost in value.
Designed and written by the same team that brought you Dragon Age: Origins, the Awakening expansion pack offers a brand new area of the world to explore known as Amaranthine, featuring an epic story that will allow players to unravel the secrets of the darkspawn - and their true motivations!
I need to see something like "Extreme Epic Story" or "Groundbreakingly Epic Story" to raise an eyebrow and actually take notice. Because if it's extreme and epic, or groundbreakingly epic, or dark and epic, it has to be better than just epic, which is really just run of the mill normal, and who wants normal mixed into their rpg? Not me. I want more epic, but darker, more extreme, and with more groundbreaking.
The recent media blitz for ME2 inspired me to confirm that my ME1 end game saves were in order. After a moment of panic before I remembered those saves were invisible system saves, and not an actual file I could load, I was surprised to see my total completion time was 23 hours. Having just clocked in 3 complete playthroughs for Dragon Age at 54, 48, and 46 hours respectively, 23 hours seems really short in comparison.
I hope the info on ME2 is accurate, and there is enough good content to hit the 30-40 hour range.
Thane seems like an interesting character. I'm not sure why they decided to add a krogan team member that seems like a younger version of Wrex. Even the voiceover work sounds the same. If they are going to include a krogan, go with something different like an elitist intellectual krogan sentinel, not what seems to be the cookie cutter krogan war killing nut. It's hard to say without actually seeing him in game, but he seems so vanilla compared to the rest of the revealed crew.
Quote from: Kevin Grey on December 17, 2009, 07:10:43 PM
Quote from: leo8877 on December 17, 2009, 06:52:46 PM
With the lawyers Tiger can buy, I'm sure Elin won't get more than the pre-nup says.
I'm guessing Tiger and his lawyers will offer some very hefty incentives if Elin agrees to stay out of the public idea and not write any tell-all books, give movie rights, etc.
I'm sure there is no shortage of excellent, top tier attorneys lining up to represent Elin. Even with the prenup, there's a good chunk of cash to be settled, not to mention some good name exposure for an ambitious law firm. No doubt Tiger has some good lawyers, but I wouldn't underestimate the attorney team that will be representing Elin. My predication is that she gets a lot more than the prenup arrangement, for some of the reasons already mentioned.
Quote from: Scuzz on December 16, 2009, 06:43:15 PM
well, #15 is a "cougar" who claims she taught Tiger everything he knows in bed...
Like a Sex Sensei. It sounds like she had better tenure than his swing coach. 5 years. She must have had a lot to teach. Ok Tiger, this afternoon we are going to build upon what you have already learned from our previous 4 years of instruction and practical application. Do I have permission to touch you? Super. Let's get started. I need you to suspend your leg from this pully, and twist your torso 45 degrees in that direction, great, and loop your right wrist through the first and second knots...
Quote from: Doopri on December 16, 2009, 05:17:07 AM
Lara Croft shivers. Airport massacre levels, be damned. Bayonetta eats angels with her hairdo.
ya what was with this? she DOES do weird stuff with her hair. and i might just be imagining this (as the game moves VERY fast during play) but does she get progressively more nekkid as she fights, only to have her clothes return seconds later??? and if so... why??? i iz confuzed!
I try not to question genius when I see it. Her clothes are made of magic witch hair. Try and wrap your brain around that. Using her magic hair as a finishing weapon which simultaneously makes her mostly naked? Check.
This is great news, and fits perfectly with my new image of Tiger. If he thought he was getting laid a lot before Elin's Golf Club Swing Attack (has a chance to proc a moderate duration stun and/or cause a sleeping effect if the target fails a physical and mental resistance check), he hasn't seen anything yet. When the new Bad Seed Tiger returns to the PGA, he will look back and laugh at only 15 mistresses.
My other advice for Tiger would be to stop with the Elin clones, that just makes him look stupid, and unaware of his true potential as a horn dog love slut. Open up the blinders loser (not in golf...he's a winner), the world is full of beautiful women that don't look like sluttier versions of Elin.
I also thought that Mass Effect really raised the bar for cinematic quality cut scenes. DA's are good too.
Regarding BG2, when I finished, I had no desire to play it again. It was great, but it was a long haul. I've already played through DA twice, and am on my 3rd playthrough. I have the gaming attention span of a 5 year old, and will rarely play through games more than once.
Quote from: DamageInc on December 15, 2009, 06:50:34 PM
Another lol moment (not that the game isn't full of them) but I was reading text on "Nugs" and it stated that one alternative way to prepare them was called "Nug-gets" The writer said his kids seem to love them. It made me laugh very hard.
I don't have kids, but many of my friends do, and the one thing most kids will eat without fail are chicken nuggets.
Truth. We were able to trick my 5 year old son from ages 3-5 into eating fish nuggest too. He called them "fuggets". It was funny at 3 and 4.
I wanted to try a primarily ranged team on my latest playthrough, using 2 rogue archers (my PC and Lelianna), Wynne as my mage, and Shale as my tank/melee. So far this has been easy going on normal, compared to my previous experiences with melee and mage groups. I am on the final stretch of the game, and every encounter has been relatively painless and easy, which is very surprising since I thought archery was supposed to suck.
My PC and Lelianna tear everything up from range, while Wynne does magic damage and heals, and Shale attracts bad guys and gets beat on. I can understand the complaints about archery early in the spec line, but man, with master archer, Arrow of Slaying, Scattershot, and critical shot, they do the highest single target damage in the game. More than mages. At level 12 my PCs arrow of slaying was hitting in the 230-260 range, which is pretty much insta-death for elites and below, and does serious damage on bosses.
My group has so many area stuns at their disposal, that Wynne is freed up to focus on attacking my PC's targets, with not nearly as much time spent healing, compared to my previous groups. Between Lelianna and my PC we have 2 group stuns from Scattershot, she has her captivating song area stun (which has come in very handy protecting the back line if they rush past Shale), Shale has 2 area stuns, and I spec'd Wynne with paralysis and mass paralysis. I never would have thought a 2 rogue archer group would even be doable, much less fun.
I setup Lelianna and Wynne to attack my PCís targets, and Shale just does whatever tanky stuff he wants to do. Encounters that were challenging or tough on my previous playthroughs, have been relatively easy with this group. I really canít imagine making archery better, but hey, I wonít complain!
I did not take Ranger for my PC because 50-60 stamina reserved was too steep, and I wanted to be able to use arrow of slaying, crit shot and scatter shot off their cooldowns. I took Duelist instead for the +10 to attack and defense, for bow users too! Lelianna runs the +crit, attk, dmg song, and can usually fire off 1 scattershot and several crit shots before running low on stamina.
From the latest class overview video the Sentinel class actually looks badass. It seems like they made an effort to design every class to be combat oriented and fun, instead of just pure support with pistols like the ME1 Sentinel. I never would have played a sentinel in ME1, but the ME2 sentinel looks fun, and really strong.
I like Tiger's new image. Self centered ass, jetsetting male slut, champion golfer who sticks his middle finger up at conventions like marriage and being a good husband. Forget trying to repair a phony image, unleash the real Tiger. I want to see him ripping up autograph requests, swearing at hecklers, throwing clubs into the audience, making out with fans between holes, and going after every Denny's and IHOP waitress he meets...and then adding it to the babe counter on his website. 1,100! Only 900 to go to hit the 1st quarter 2010 Tiger Romp goal. Embrace the ugly.
Quote from: EddieA on December 12, 2009, 06:32:52 AM
Quote from: disarm on December 12, 2009, 01:03:28 AM
i tried to take what i thought would be some cool screenshots when i defeated the high dragon a couple nights ago, but just hitting the 'Prt Screen' button doesn't seem to have worked...no shots saved anywhere
that was an awesome finishing animation though
They should be in My Documents/Bioware/Dragon Age/Screenshots/User.
There's a reported issue with some vista users not being able to take screenshots, using whatever key is assigned to screenshots (print screen). They don't work for me either. The automatic story and achievement screenshots work fine for me...and they are located in the directory mentioned above. Reassigning a new key for screenshots doesn't work for me.
I'm not sure how binding a prenup is with evidence of serial cheating of this magnitude. I'm guessing it depends on the state and the judge. In the states I've lived, prenups are not guaranteed protection, not like you would imagine them to be.
I imagine he knows himself best, so why did he bother getting married in the first place? Just remain the most eligible sports bachelor in America, and enjoy his heart's content of willing women.
He's got a long way to go before he starts closing the gap on Wilt. Tiger...10? Wilt...10,000? At least he chose two records from two iconic champions to pursue, Arnold and Wilt. Both records are safe for the time being, unless 9,000 more cocktail waitresses, porn stars, nightclub event planners, grocery store cart wranglers, and mall kiosk clerks suddenly come forth with their own tiger tales. He likes to downgrade apparently. He's doing his part to help the economy.
Quote from: jersoc on December 07, 2009, 08:03:40 PM
damnit, they nerfed force field. totally not installing the patch until i beat the game, hehe. which isn't far, right at the end.
I liked the flexibility in that it could be used to lock down a strong enemy, or to protect a party member that was about to die...or being the target of focus fire. The AI seemed broken in how it handled force field. The AI would attack and use skills on force fielded targets.
Shimmering Shield seemed more broken than Force Field.
Quote from: Gratch on November 29, 2009, 09:25:10 PM
1. Is there a suggested sequence for all the side quests? I know I've got Redcliffe, the Mage Tower, the Dwarves, and a couple others...not sure which order I should tackle them in. 2. Any Specialization recommendations for a DW Warrior? 3. Most of the DW skills involve Dex instead of Strength, but all my RPG habits keep telling me to still put some points into Strength for added damage. Is it best to keep distributing them evenly, or just focus on Dex since I'm DW'ing?
1. The most natural story flow seems to be Redcliffe>Mage Tower>Forest>Orzimmar. I've played through each as a dwarf noble, city elf and mage, and I recommend that approach, although you could take any, that order just seems to make the most sense. Not to mention each area has a set minimum level range that seems to support that order. I did it the hard way first by going to the dwarves and elves first.
2. My city elf is a DW warrior, and I've had a lot of fun with Berserker and Templar specializations. Berserker for the extra damage, and Templar to screw with mages. Each hit drains mana, so I imagined a DW warrior to be a nasty foe for mages.
3. The highest dex requirement for a DW warrior is 36. I stopped there. I basically made a beeline for 36 dex, with a few points in Strength so I could wear medium armor. Once I hit 36 dex, I focused on strength. 38 strength will allow you to wear most of the nice Massive Armor sets, and 42 strength will cover you for the top tier Massive Armor sets. You will be around levels 16-18 at this point. I've been raising up constitution once I hit 42 strength.
Compared to my mage and 2 handed dwarf, my DW warrior is a killing machine. He has almost twice the kills, with a significantly more damage...at the same level. He started a little slow, but once I got Momentum, his world got significantly better.
I took arcane warrior for my mage thinking it would be a good out of mana option as well. What I discovered is that the arcane warrior buff line is so good, that his impact on the team was better felt just staying in that mode and being a melee tank/dps. The bonus to damage is crazy, given that he does more auto attack damage with a 1 handed sword than Sten with a 2 hander. Shimmering Shield is crazy too, giving him 75% resists to all elemental effects! In fact, I think it's broken. It converts damage taken into mana loss, but when you run out of mana, the shield still stays up. Because of that, my arcane warrior can have a ton of defensive and offensive buffs, and basically be a monster tank or melee dps.
The downside? It's mostly boring auto attack damage. He can't really cast spells other than an opening cone of cold or sleep, and then he's out of mana. Thankfully there are not a lot of enemies that can dispel magic, but the ones that do shut down all of his buffs at once (like the Templar ability Cleanse Area). Without his buffs he's just wimp wearing heavy armor. You gain incredible survivability by losing the mana pool to cast spells for any length of time.
I found myself getting frustrated trying to balance the fatigue rating of armor with the kind of spell usage I wanted. I ended up going with light armor, and turning on the AW buffs when needed. Wearing heavy armor means a 25-30% fatigue hit for each spell cast, which is brutal, and that's without any additional sustained abilities up.
Quote from: jersoc on November 23, 2009, 08:40:37 PM
nice tip of the mage tower, make sure I won't miss it. finishing that up later today. Man cc seems to rule this game. I took wynn over morrigan and losing sleep hurt big time. luckily earthquake+tempest storm helps big time.
I dropped Morrigan for Wynne for a short series of side quests that involved fighting loads of bad guys, and Morrigan quickly earned her spot back on the A team. You're right, cc makes a world of difference, and Wynne buffing and healing just isn't the same as locking down an entire screen of baddies.
This tip is for a potentially frustrating boss battle during the Mage Tower storyline. I made the mistake (twice) of doing this battle the wrong way. I succeeded both times, but it was an exercise in frustration. I'm hoping that others won't make the same mistake I did. This is for the first major boss battle. I can't get any more specific without revealing spoilers.
Spoiler for Hiden:
Sloth boss battle. I cleared all of the demons in the major hubs, and gained all of the forms to move on to the center. This is where I failed to listen to the dialogue, and inadvertently made the fight against the sloth demon much, much harder. At this point I should have gone to each Nightmare Hub and freed my companions by defeating their demon. Instead, I went straight to the center and had to solo the sloth demon. I did that fight once with my dwarf noble weapon and shield warrior, and once with my city elf dual wield warrior...with no companions. In short, it sucked, especially with the dwarf since he can't use lyrium veins...at all.
So in the interest of sparing others from the same frustrating experience, please save your companions before you head into the center! I'm sure that fight would have been much, much easier. Having to do one of those boss battles where the boss turns into another boss each time you take his health down, until you've fought several versions of him, is not fun solo. My own fault. And I did that on Normal. Ugh.
I second that the Shale story line is great, and one of the best companion quests. Shale's strength is not just in tanking, but as an amazingly flexible all purpose companion, based on the situation. Not too far into the game Shale can already have two lines maxed out, and by mid point, can become your most flexible character.
I think Allistar makes a better tank later in the game due to better armor and defense, and him being fully ranked up in weapon and shield and templar abilities. Holy Smite is nasty against mages. But Shale is more flexible, and can fill a tank, melee dps, ranged dps, and support role at a moments notice.
On the inspirpation for Shale (major companion spoiler):
Spoiler for Hiden:
There are so many things in DA that seem to be directly influenced from Warhammer 40k. The golems, and Shale, are like dreadnoughts...which was a very cool reveal. Calindon (sp?) was just like a 40k dreadnought.
Watching Morigann climb on top of my dwarf warrior was both hilarious and disturbing. Kudos to Bioware for not leaving dwarves out of the fun, but man, that was all kinds of weird. My dwarf's giant oversized cranium and miles of manback obscurred most of the action. And when they kiss, I'm treated to a close up of his meaty hairy face, as it blots her out of the scene. Good stuff.
I met Demo Dick (Dick Marcinko) in San Diego at a book signing during the 90's. I was stationed at Camp Pendleton, and my buddies and I made a trip down to San Diego to hang out for the day. We stopped into a mall to pick up some stuff, and there he was, signing books for one of his rogue warrior novels. We had all read Rogue Warrior, so it was just dumb luck that we ran into him. We asked him to sign something for us, to which he offerred up the following concise wisdom, "Don't be pencil dick pushovers. Lead your men."
When I mentioned to my Navy buddies from college that I ran into him, they unleashed the hate. Apparently he was not real popular in the Navy community. My Marine buddies thought he was gruff, but pretty cool, and didn't take his fictional persona seriously.
The game has flown too far under the radar for me not to think it is a ninja turd about to be released to the world.
Quote from: Dan_Theman on November 17, 2009, 05:40:11 PM
Quote from: CeeKay on November 17, 2009, 05:35:05 PM
Quote from: Kevin Grey on November 17, 2009, 05:27:19 PM
Quote from: kratz on November 17, 2009, 05:19:59 PM
And holy SHIT the mage cowls are idiotic looking... what's wrong with a nice hood?
Yeah, it's weird that there is all of this pre-production artwork with Morrigan in a hood but I've yet to find one in the game.
you know, combat did become easier after I put that mage hood on my main character to free up an inventory slot.... maybe they're that way distract the enemy with laughter....
I keep looking for an anti-conehead mod. Any day now. Please?
We are from France
Oh that's awful. I took Arcane Warrior for my mage's first specialization; he's been wearing decent looking helms for awhile now. He's not secure enough with his awesome mageness to wear one of those coneheaded cowls.
I bet they will add a "Hide Helm" toggle in a future patch. That's become almost an expected feature in most crpgs (mmorpgs).
I noticed what I think is a bug with the skill Berserk. It makes sense from a roleplaying point of view that berserk would not be a true sustainable ability between battles...so it shuts off between fights. What doesn't make sense is that it shuts off any time I open a menu of any kind during fights. That has to be a bug. It's not fatigue related, since my character is mostly topped off on fatigue when it shuts off from opening menus. When berserk is up, combined with momentum, carnage ensues. The stamina drain/stamina regen penalties are not too bad once ranked up to the 3rd berserk skill.
Regarding Shale and his storyline while adventuring on the Orzimarr quest (no spoilers...but just in case you don't want any tips at all):
Spoiler for Hiden:
I recommend taking him with you all the way to the finale encounter in the deep roads. I missed that opportunity by not taking him along...which I regret now.
Quote from: Caine on November 12, 2009, 09:44:53 PM
so, does that mean that playing as a rogue is going to screw me up later on? i was hoping to take advantage of the long ranch + dual wielding talents the first time out.
i haven't played much yet, only up past the joining, but i've managed half of my battles without too much difficulty. mainly, i just need to change my approach from the action heavy games i'm used to.
It sounds like rogues can be very strong, it just takes a little while for them to build up talents (both for range and DW melee)...whereas a warrior can already be knocking in faces at level 5. I don't have the patience to micro manage the npc rogues during fights to keep getting the backstab bonuses. I imagine it is probably fun playing a rogue as the main character though, since you're primarily doing all of that stuff yourself (flanking or shooting everything). At level 10 a certain red headed bard is just starting to come into her own in my group, where the rest of the team has been kicking butt with tier 3 and a couple of tier 4 skills/spells already. They have so many talents that are good, that it's hard not to spread out their talent points.
I thought I would use the top down view a lot, but I mostly only use it when my view is obstructed by terrain or masses of baddies. I'm glad we have that option though, because it does come in handy when the 3rd person camera view gets wonky during fights.
I stopped using the select all command last night, and that made a huge difference in my party following through on their tactics setup.
My initial impression of rogue companions up to level 10 was that they just weren't cutting their weight compared to the rest of my team. And with only 3 npc slots, the choice is tough. Just as I was starting to feel good about getting ready to boot my rogue out, she siezed a critical opportunity to make a story element signficantly easier because of her rogueish talents. F**king Bioware!
If mages had a knock spell and a disarm trap spell in this game, my rogues would be back at camp turning all of the mushrooms my party finds into souflees.
Mages are key. The lore pretty much hits us over the head with this. Mages are so powerful and potentially dangerous, they need to be essentially kidnapped as children and locked away in towers. The power of mages mentioned in the lore or by characters in the story translates directly into the combat. From my experiences, mages make hard encounters doable, or even trivial.
Crowd control is key. Mages have so many spells that stun, sleep, slow, and generally control the battlefield. I actually recommend including 2 mages in a party, one focused on crowd control and damage and the other focused on healing and damage, with some crowd control. It makes a WORLD of difference. I'm learning why mages are so feared in this gameworld, they can make even the toughest bosses and largest packs of baddies seem like fodder.
I hotkeyed Select All Party so I could easily focus fire on targets during tough battles. I noticed that when I do that, the AI will do nothing but standard attacks, and won't use any of their tactics, spells, skills or abilities on their own. I did a few experiments just targeting with my character, and letting the AI do its thing, and the party remained true to their tactics and set behaviours. But everytime I hit select all, and then right click on a target, they all default to just their standard attack.
I didn't notice this too much at first because I was using this method to manually control the use of spells and abilities as I switched between each character. This may be what others are experiencing when they see the AI not using tactics, healing, or using skills. Left to their own, the AI seems to do ok, but I think if you right click attack for them (through select all or individually), they seem to get stuck in their default attack.
I have had a lot of problems with Shale's AI. More than any other character Shale seems to get stuck on things, the AI seems to turn off, I've seen it just stand in spot during big fights. And this is with his behaviour set to Aggressive, the party set to Free Movement, and the default defender tactics. Not sure what's going on there.
I noticed tonight for the second time in 2 nights that my party tactics seemed to bug out and stop working all together. My party members stop using tactics, like the tactics AI just shuts off. Exiting and reloading the last save fixes it for me.
Of the many things that Bioware got right in DA, having the world react appropriately and intelligently to your character is one of them. It's refreshing to see at every turn the attention to detail that was made to write the correct dialogue or responses based on your characters origin, race and accomplishments. I think this part of DA is the biggest leap forward for the genre. In most rpgs with multiple race/class choices, I would have already experienced many examples of immersion killing npc lack of awareness of my character or their accomplishments. So far Bioware has nailed this aspect.
Mages are combat force multipliers, and can really boost the overall strength of a team.
Flaming Weapons and Frost Weapons are great sustained spells that a mage can run for their party that make a world of difference early in the game.
There is a great selection of crowd control spells that can lock down single enemies and groups of enemies, and many of those spells have some synergy with damage related aoe spells. Mages can make their will felt in combat through the use of good CC, which might actually be more beneficial at times than blowing stuff up.
The first healing spell is a nice addition to any mages spell library.
Sustained spells "reserve" a finite amount of your mana, depending on the spell requirements. It shows up as a gap in your mana around your portrait. Some sustained spells just reserve x amount of mana, others reserve that mana and negatively impact mana regen, or some will drain mana.
If you are having mana issues early in the game, you may need to go easy on actively casting direct damage spells, and using sustained spells that reserve mana. Bumping up willpower helps.