Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous

I have mixed feelings about the party size of 4.

On one hand, you're right about the archetype problem (actually I'm curious how soloers deal with traps if their character doesn't have sufficient perception to spot them). BATTLETECH is a good example of this - the difficulty mechanism (enemy lances may as well be Steiner scouts...reinforced by more Steiner scouts) which shoehorns players into particular lance compositions. That said, BG3 probably lets you get away with dropping a cleric or full spellcaster given the relatively lower difficulty ceiling so perhaps it's more about new playthroughs to explore builds.

On the other, too many units make turns last forever. You know, the good old Civ problem of making 20+ decisions a turn in the mid to late game. Pillars had a lot going on onscreen. The AI seemed more competent too which militated against a party of glass cannons. It felt a bit overwhelming to me especially with real time combat but the bigger party size I think was justifiable with the pause toggle.

I've never been a max difficulty player in any event, although I feel BG3 Tactician might be closer to where I would like generally. That is, optimised parties can trounce encounters but less optimised builds can have a decent crack at it. Pathfinder seems like there are certain companions that are significantly less effective due to starting stat distribution and that's a pity because the game meta would have you either build a mercenary and optimise feats and multiclass splashes to circumvent the issue. Or go for spells (not everyone's cup of tea).

There's other ways I guess a BG3 player can artificially handicap themselves e.g. avoid the 9/3, 6/3/3 or 6/4/2 splashes, ban Tavern Brawler builds, ban rolling ability scores under 10, ban cheesing weapon drops that shouldn't be available if you didn't exploit the AI (Command spell, I'm looking at you).

The Good: It's finally done!

The Bad: Didn't get the secret ending. Also, the entrance to Threshold should be a bit more of a triumphant moment. Instead, it's kinda... eh. And every single swarm in this game can go to hell.

I have plowed 198 hours into this game since roughly August 2. My misgivings about this game are all over this thread already, in detail.

And yet, as I finish up, my first thought is "Let's restart so we can go back through and get the secret ending."

Frankly, I wish I hadn't found out about it, because it made the normal ending I got seem like a disappointment. Like, I feel like I couldn't review this game, because I didn't get the ending I wanted.

That said, all the reviews calling this a 7.5/10 game feel just about right.

I'm going to have to take a day or two to sit with this, because I have BG3 sitting right there waiting for me and I really should get to it, but that "Secret ending" thing is a huge pull on my brain.

Bfgp wrote:

That said, BG3 probably lets you get away with dropping a cleric or full spellcaster given the relatively lower difficulty ceiling so perhaps it's more about new playthroughs to explore builds.

Yes, the 5th edition ruleset and the tweaks Larian made to it - and the greater systemic depth - make having the standard archetypes far less essential.

Count me amongst the ones that find Pathfinder 3.5 endless list of class combos and feats exhausting. I can handle it for one character, but for an entire roster it just makes me hit the auto level up button every time, and then you have to roll through the perverse encounter tuning with a suboptimal party. (Although it has to be said, Wrath is *much* better than Kingmaker in that regard.)

Alien Love Gardener wrote:

(Although it has to be said, Wrath is *much* better than Kingmaker in that regard.)

..............I will never play Kingmaker.

Prederick wrote:
Alien Love Gardener wrote:

(Although it has to be said, Wrath is *much* better than Kingmaker in that regard.)

..............I will never play Kingmaker.

Some of Wrath being better is that the turn based mode makes it easier to manage (and IIRC it has been backported to Kingmaker), but yeah. Kingmaker thinks having a standard enemy in the last chapters casting mass paralyze as a free bonus action every turn is a good idea.

Prederick wrote:

I'm going to have to take a day or two to sit with this, because I have BG3 sitting right there waiting for me and I really should get to it, but that "Secret ending" thing is a huge pull on my brain.

My advice - which of course you are completely free to ignore! - would be to go away and play something that isn’t an isometric (ish) cRPG and have something of a palette cleanser before you start BG3. BG3 is another 100+ hour commitment. You really don’t want to burn out on it.

I don't think that BG3 is any less overwhelming with options.
Sure, AFAIK, they won't do the mass paralyze as a free action BS.

But the staggering number of solutions and entrances into combat would be enough. But no, they add all the dialogue choices on top. And seriously, none of this stuff is the typical good, bad or ugly tropes. Good, bad, and gray intros and outcomes can be linked and combined any number of times. I bet if you tried to do a playthrough with the same choices, it couldn't be done. Either through lack of being able to keep track of it all. Or from a pile up of choices not having the exact same outcomes.

fangblackbone wrote:

I don't think that BG3 is any less overwhelming with options.
Sure, AFAIK, they won't do the mass paralyze as a free action BS.

But the staggering number of solutions and entrances into combat would be enough. But no, they add all the dialogue choices on top. And seriously, none of this stuff is the typical good, bad or ugly tropes. Good, bad, and gray intros and outcomes can be linked and combined any number of times. I bet if you tried to do a playthrough with the same choices, it couldn't be done. Either through lack of being able to keep track of it all. Or from a pile up of choices not having the exact same outcomes.

But that's the options you have making moment to moment choices during play. I find that sort of freedom delightful. And if you f*ck up, you might have a fun time escaping by the skin of your teeth. In the Pathfinder games, the wealth of options are in the character build, which is kind of like optimizing a spreadsheet over a hundred hours. Which is...not entirely unengaging, but when you have that amount of variables to tune, and have to do it for 10+ characters, I hit my breaking point. Also, if you f*ck up, you're not coping with a disastrous situation, it means every combat situation is a disaster.

Yah. Another difference is the fact that BG3 f*cking up is half (all?) the fun whether its game over or not. (and a lot of times failure is not game over but game anew)

Reading this discussion has helped me solidify why my own Kingmaker playthrough died after ~30 hours. Every encounter was becoming a chore and I was constantly worried that my build choices were trash. That and the whole kingdom-management portion was dull.

fangblackbone wrote:

Yah. Another difference is the fact that BG3 f*cking up is half (all?) the fun whether its game over or not. (and a lot of times failure is not game over but game anew)

I've seen evidence of this and it's a hugely, hugely smart move by those Devs that I hope more CRPG makers follow.

Sorbicol wrote:

My advice - which of course you are completely free to ignore! - would be to go away and play something that isn’t an isometric (ish) cRPG and have something of a palette cleanser before you start BG3. BG3 is another 100+ hour commitment. You really don’t want to burn out on it.

I'm giving myself a few days to rest. I'm a good CRPG nerd, so as long as I can get invested in the characters and story, I doubt I'll get burned out (I mean, I ground my way through Pathfinder entirely on the strength of my interest in the characters/plot). Anyway, the next game on my list is CP2077 2.0, and I've already played through that twice.

Having taken a day, my "Let's start again!" fever appears to be breaking. Put flatly, I didn't enjoy the game enough to restart it immediately, even if I didn't hate it. Most of the reviews I saw collected on Wikipedia gave this a 7.8/10, which strikes me as wildly accurate.

I still, broadly, enjoyed myself! I still think I'll fire this up for a replay sometime, but maybe I'll save that for 2024.