Pengw1n Plays: 1 Week Beta Impressions

Discussion in 'Feedback and Suggestions' started by Pengw1n, Feb 4, 2013.

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  1. Pengw1n

    Pengw1n Moderately Informed Staff Member

    My participation in the beta has come to an end, as I was invited to partake of another user´s account for a limited time. Figured I'd conclude my experience/praise/issues and suggestion as well as bid my daring adventuring party adieu in a suitable fashion. This might be a very long post, so those weak of reading and patience have been warned!

    PART I

    The Rowdy Bunch

    Last seem attempting to journey deeper into The Sinister Woods (a lvl 10 adventure, featuring various walking trees - hence the wizard loadout being heavy on fire and armor removal).

    General Adventuring, Power Curve and Loot(!)
    I started the game with 3 characters as the tutorial was already completed om the account, hence the exact same experience of all party members, my inability to give feedback on tutorial and possibly having a slightlier easier time with the Trogs (this was Trog wiz pre-nerf and adventure lvl reshuffle).​
    The look of the inventory and party member screens are awesome, really like the art look, avatars (although some seem to misrepresent their classes or don't fit as Heroes like the Frazetta-ish warrior), also it's very clunky to find your party members if you have more than a handful.​
    For the early parts of my adventures I used only the gear I aquired in my travels, as well as what I could buy myself, as my patron had a very large collection of items - and I wanted to experience the game as fresh and fair as possible. I always tend to appreciate games during the early game - something I've dubbed "the pig farming" period, where every piece of loot, however crappy, is something great for your shabby heroes. However, when I started getting empty slots (around lvl 5?) I decided to start using at least lvl appropriate gear from what was available - so that might make the experience somewhat easier in terms of what adventures I could beat.​
    I had no real problems with beating lvl appropriate adventures, some required a few tries or even a reset or two - but nothing that had me tear my hair. Felt as intended design, where BM was going back to that old school vibe of "Game Over means: good try, better luck next time" rather than "U suck NOOB" - as an old school game I really appreciated that. Also having to change your loadouts due to the mobs you'll meet is awesome, although as a more casual gamer this might cause some aggravation (see suggestion below).​
    Problem: People getting annoyed at not being able to beat a lvl appropriate adventure.​
    Solution: Have Gary give adventure appropriate solutions, as he's sorry he beat you so soundly. I mean, the guy's a jerk - but he has a concience, right? Or add a barkeep to taverns which you can pay for this information - so you can actually research adventures before going in.​
    Problem: Map system makes it harder and harder to keep track of suitable adventures - especially if you're replaying with new parties or have a lot unlocked.​
    Solution: Add map filter with level range, adventures that give xp, premium, and open challenges et c.​
    (minor) Problem: Once beaten, a premium adventure looks like any adventure. If I pay for something, I guess I want to know even after I'm done with it - also, can cause confusion when discussing adventures on forums. "Player A: Just do adventure X - it's great", "Player B: Wut, it's premium you doofus!"​
    Solution: Add a P before any premium name, or just keep the bronzing - it still says completed, so why remove it?​
    Problem: Unless you have played through the game, or read wikis or forum - you have no clue when inventory slots unlock. It's slightly annoying, and I can imagine newer players won't even realize.​
    Solution: As suggested before in the first impression thread, show all slots in a padlocked state. Might be appropriate for talents as well?​
    Problem: Being able to use any lvl loot as long at it doesn't have talent requirements can cause some heavy twinking. Some item groups generally don't require many talents (divine and arcane items comes to mind), so you can basically sport an epic lvl 18 divine item on a low lvl char. If the devs don't feel twinking is against their plans, this isn't a really a problem.​
    Solution: I don't mind some twinking, but adding a lvl based talent system (1 lvl talent/lvl?), where every item over lvl 10 has one as a req could soften it a bit. Meaning a lvl 2 char can have 1 lvl 10 items, lvl 2 2 et c. Lvl 20 can just have items with double the amount of pips - and so on, forcing tradeoffs (chosing 1 mega powerful twink or several medium).​
    Problem: Not being able to find characters you're looking for in a pile if you have more than a few.​
    Solution: Sorting functionality, or sorting filter (alphabetically, level, class - falling/rising order) - also search field. Standard party markable as favourites? Or saving a fully nameable adventuring party as a Party Loadout.​
    Problem: Inventory is a mess, the more items you get the more confusing it gets.​
    Solution: Add a "new item" marking that shows until you've viewed an item's suite. Add filters that can delist item below certain lvl ranges et c.​
    In conclusion, these are all usability complaints - and can be viewed as personal preferences and all somewhat minor. I will return, with my takes on actual gameplay. If you've taken the time to read this, I thank you for your patience ;)
    /Pengw1n (keeping busy waiting for a golden ticket of my own)​
    Aiven, SurgeonFish, Hexyz and 5 others like this.
  2. Pengw1n

    Pengw1n Moderately Informed Staff Member

    Part II

    Deckbuilding & Combat Mechanics

    The idea of making a deck using equipment suits is bloody brilliant, and I can't see why it hasn't been done before - either in ccgs or boardgames. Guess it can be related to it being very micro to have to switch stuff around manually? Either way, I'm loving it - and that there's usually not a straight "upgrade" option, and that lower level items can be better due to a suit fitting your build better is awesome. The potential complexity is staggering! <3

    Some people have complained they don't want to use different builds for different adventures. I really like it, as it makes you learn the cards and test new ideas - I happen to love creative deckbuilding in ccg's, so maybe this a bias.

    Combat in general is awesome, however - the random deployment of characters can be a difference between making of breaking an adventure success even before starting one! I hope there's a deployment system (which has you pick between starting locations - ranging from 3 tiles to a whole area based off map and adventure design) coming, otherwise I'd really suggest implementing one. This is one of the RNG bits in the game that doesn't really add anything.

    I have no complaints about the AI what so ever, sometimes it does things I don't expect it to - but rarely does it do things that are outright stupid or gamey. Apart from trying to play movement cards and doesn't / can't move. Mob variations and mob decks also feels very interesting - however somewhat hard to see enemy's revealed cards during your own turn as they're dimmed out. Minion packs is an interesting idea I find works very well, and have been using the tip of removing some from every minion pack (as it removes card draw from several groups) rather than kill one before starting out a new one to great success.

    Problem: There's the issue with Line of Sight that some people have mentioned, it's sometimes not intuitive if a move would get you in or out of LoS before you make it, and having to stop and like hold up a ruler to the screen makes my inner gamer cringe.
    Solution: I recall Jon said that it would be useful, but that it's maybe not very high on the to-do list, or even simple at that. Why not have it work as an always available "spell" with unlimited (or just as large as the largest map in the game) that tracks from the point you hover it over, but just lacks any kind of casting effect - once you click it, it just goes away instead. If there's any mechanical reasons for it not to work, have it be a cantrip or other card (while invisible) to not switch to opponent's turn. Of course it shouldn't be a card shown in your deck but triggered with a hot key, as it shouldn't count towards discard - but maybe that could lessen the technical burden of having to implement a separate LoS tracking system for uninhabited areas. Or maybe the current LoS system can be fooled into believing you're standing in the area you select somehow?

    Problem: I had a guy stand in a lava pool, and had a force bolt on my mage which I couldn't use it as it's not friendly fire - but felt like it would have been very useful. Tactically the tradeoff would make sense and would add to a player feeling clever. Can imagine this would could be used with Dissolve Armor and similar to remove Encumbering effects et c. Card games are all about finding new uses for old cards aren't they?
    Solution: Having a possible "force friendly fire", as there already is friendly fire in the game based from aoe's, chops et c. - apparently already works! Ctrl-click when casting. Thanks Sir Knight!

    (minor) Problem: I always forget how to compare items on the inventory screen, and wind up trying all the clicking combinations - and thus feel like a dumbass.
    Solution: Have the different mouse commands be featured at the bottom of the character sheet in the loadout inventory, with potential hot keys if any.

    All in all, I really really like the game. I did not run the challenge modes or try out any MP during my time in the beta so can't really comment on those, then again - I don't believe I have a problem with them as they are currently. Maybe adding special rewards (non-purchasable) avatars as a drop from some of these would make sense, I like earning stuff - and I believe a lot of other player's do too.

    Hexyz and Scyrax like this.
  3. Sir Knight

    Sir Knight Sir-ulean Dragon

    Control-click the card when selecting it.
    Hexyz likes this.
  4. Wozarg

    Wozarg Thaumaturge

    It makes it harder to pree plan for certain adventures if that adds or subtracts i will refrain from commenting on but it is a function.
  5. Ponyboy

    Ponyboy Orc Soldier

    I think it's one of those things that adds a bit or replayability to the adventures.
  6. Hexyz

    Hexyz Mushroom Warrior

    Thanks for posting the screens!
  7. Fred

    Fred Kobold

    need more Monster character Pls neutral monsters!!!!!!!
  8. ChosenUndead

    ChosenUndead Mushroom Warrior

    Especially when it includes the last encounter on high level modules.
  9. ChosenUndead

    ChosenUndead Mushroom Warrior

    What might be helpful is Ctrl-click casting being explained either in the tutorial, or later on into the campaign
  10. Megadestructo

    Megadestructo Shark Card

    Okay, this thread was from February. Let's not dig up old posts shall we? Especially as these are all BETA impressions.
    Pengw1n likes this.
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