Pathfinder: Kingmaker

Aetius wrote:

I've been experimenting with different builds vs. Hard difficulty while waiting for the bugfixes to arrive. My main group on Challenging is saved just after the Stag Lord fight. It's ... pretty difficult to even make it out of the tutorial on Hard.

Also, I found that

Spoiler:

if you don't level up before the second fight at Oleg's, you can get custom companions for 100 gold after the fight (it says 500, but only charges you 100). The downside is that they are level 1 with no experience, but this does allow you get a real healer and more firepower before hitting the spiders and Tartuccio.

That is quite nice.
I have also been looking at starting a new game with optimized chars on higher difficulty today - since early game seems relatively bug free now. Lots of customization options to be sure.

Heh, tried Unfair. Couldn't beat the first real fight (3 enemies). Tried Hard, and it went better, but cant beat first fight after Jaethal, though at least it seems somewhat doable.

Back to my old playthrough, though it seems like everything is starting to break down. Got another quest that shows as failed, even though I had already done exactly what it said it failed on.
I get the impression you have to do a bunch of these quests in very specific order for them to work as intended. They sure cant have tested the game much.

I'm still in on it. I'm up to lvl 8 on my dudes. Lot of multiclassing my frontliners to maximze damage output and cc abilities (Squee tip: splash one level of Alchemist Vivisectionist for sneak attack and free +4 to any one combat stat at the expense of +1 BAB). At this point my casters have good spells...that lvl 3 spell jump is NOT OVERRATED. Going from web to slow, haste, and fireball is pretty great. Adding a second attack does a ton for damage, and my clerics and sub casters have real buffs now.

Preparation before a fight is KEY. Having everyone buffed up and ready to roll makes a huge difference. The difference between party wipe and kill everything easily. There is really no downside to burning through spells as much as you need to. At any moment you can just exit the map, rest in the wild, and come on back in. The only downside is a few loading screens...which are bad in this game....

The early levels are definitely a struggle, especially if you rolled your main character as a full spellcaster. For min-maxing purposed I would recommend rolling your main character as a solid fighter type to get through the early levels, and then transition your party to more and more spell focused as you level up. Since everyone gains experience together you can have your fighters go get the experience to get your casters to lvl 5, and then replace them once they are outclassed. This is all very true to the tabletop game, which I enjoy, but seems very punishing to folks not super familiar with the meta of D&D 3.5 and/or Pathfinder.

I'm still really enjoying it. The bugs sound terrible but fortunately I haven't encountered anything too wonky.

I've paused playing until the developers get their stuff together. They seem to be breaking stuff faster than they fix it. I at least want a fix for the multiple item effects bug that retroactively fixes saved games. In the beginning I thought the game was in pretty good shape. I think I'm level 8 now.

Squee9 wrote:

For min-maxing purposed I would recommend rolling your main character as a solid fighter type to get through the early levels, and then transition your party to more and more spell focused as you level up.

I second this advice. I did a few runs on Unfair last night, after watching some videos that actually had people making it out of the tutorial (pre-nerf!). The only character I've made any reasonable progress with was a full-on defensive human fighter. I could get his AC up to 29 which was just enough to keep a single attacker whiffing long enough to Magic Missile them down. On lower difficulties you can avoid using Fight Defensively and/or the tower shield, which means he can hit things and that'll carry you through pretty easily.

29 AC in tutorial
My main game is a squishy wizard which probably caused some of my early problems there. My attempt at Unfair is a tanky rogue (moving into monk and fighter later, which should give good defense) but not very tanky at lvl 1.

Were Owlcat's other games like Saint's Row and the Metro series as buggy as this when they came out? I am pretty interested in trying this game (I like the Glass Cannon podcast and they use Pathfinder), but all of these obvious and huge bugs and balance issues are putting me off.

Neither Metro nor Saint's Row were developed by Owlcat. Deep Silver is the publisher for all the games (after snagging the rights/developers when THQ went under.)

I've kind of enjoyed my time with Pathfinder, despite Malor's "mean DM" characterization feeling fairly on point, but I'm shelving this until the patch storm dies down as well. I haven't encountered any massive bugs during my time with it, but given the rate they seem to introduce new ones, why tempt fate?

Huh dang Steam. I clicked on Owlcat Games as the developer and it took me to Deep Silver's page and I didn't notice.

I'm around 20 hours in so far and have been having a blast with the game. Ran into a few minor bugs but nothing crazy. The occasional freeze or crash but I'm auto saving so much it hasn't mattered too much. The first 3 characters I tried were all high concept, high skill type classes with lots of abilities that would help me out in non-combat skill check situations. It was not pretty. I loved the idea of those characters but they just kept dying. Like, a lot. The knifemaster was the exception. He did pretty well but there was still tons of reloading. That was when I finally got frustrated and just rolled up with a half-orc two handed weapons specialist fighter that's all strength and constitution. He may not be able to convince anyone of anything and actually lowers rolls if you assign him as a guard for your camp, but he can take a hit and dish out the damage. It made the early game so much easier. The only time I started to get really frustrated was much later on on a particular boss:

Spoiler:

The Troll King you fight in the dwarven ruins after your barony is established.

I actually decided to google that particular fight to see if it was just me and there were tons of threads where it looked like people were bailing on the game saying the fight was impossible. It took me probably a dozen tries but eventually with some slight cheesing I was able to get past it. This is definitely giving me the same kind of memories as Baldur's Gate did but, at least so far, the story doesn't seem nearly as strong.

Aetius wrote:
Squee9 wrote:

For min-maxing purposed I would recommend rolling your main character as a solid fighter type to get through the early levels, and then transition your party to more and more spell focused as you level up.

I second this advice...

To go even further I would advise to have your main dude be a fighter, and then hire pure caster custom companions as soon as you can at low levels when they cost no gold, then swap the pure casters in to your party later on in the game.

--

Kehama: I found that fight to be a pretty classic example of Pathfinder mechanics. I got stomped on my first 2 attempts, and then on my third attempt I went full preparation, put on all the buffs I had after a full rest, and pretty easily rolled through. Successfully getting the monster to focus on my tank while everyone else dumps on him also helped a good bit.

I wonder if I didn’t do something I should have to meet more potential advisers.
My staff so far is:
Regent: Valerie
Councilor: Tristan
General: Kassil
Treasurer: Jubilost
High Priest Jhod
Curator: Linzi

I just unlocked the High Diplomat, but the only people who qualify are Valerie and Linzi. If I put one of those two in the spot I’m not sure I have anyone else to fill their vacant spot. Not sure if I should have done something to meet more people.

After some searching...

I think my problem is that I can't enter the Technic League Encampment. Looks like you can recruit 2 people from there. I found the location back prior to the Stag Bandit but didn't enter before i killed him. I tried after that and couldn't and just figured the quest timed out. Now I searched on that location and realize I'm missing 2 characters. I may stop playing this. There is no way I'm restarting to get those 2 characters, but if I can't fill my adviser slots I'm probably screwed.

None of those characters can be high diplomat. The one you dont have is a mage NPC (not a companion) you meet during the troll quests in act 2.
But if he is gone too, it should be possible to use Linzi or Valerie and replace them with someone else.
Such as the Storyteller guy in the capital (not sure what triggers him being available, if he isnt already, maybe just talking with him)

Huh...is the mage guy?

Spoiler:

The mage with the whip? He got killed by an angry troll in his own basement for me.

Yeah that is the one. And yep, took some tries to save him. After which his quest was bugged anyway... But he could be recruited.

Well crap, I ticked that guy off by siding with one of my people and issuing an emancipation proclamation. Now he won't even talk to me. Maybe I'll check back with him to see if that ever changes.

I have missed 1 companion and at least 1 NPC advicer. Dont think its an issue unless you happens to miss multiple from the same group.

I made it to the start of chapter 5 and i think I'm going hold off continuing for now. A friend says the game is kind of a mess with bugs towards the end.

Despite knowing that this game is currently a hot mess and having zero knowledge of pathfinder (well, I know 3.5 D&D some), I find that I'm badly wanting this game. Going to try to resist but going to enable my own failure to resist by tagging into this thread and reading about the game.

If anyone is streaming at any point, let me know so that I might have further cause to fail.

Harpo, the kingdom stuff isn't nearly as good as it sounds. It makes for some good flavor but not much substance.

I wonder if I have hit a gamebreaking bug. Next chapter (think it should be chapter 5) isn't starting. Been some months now. It is nice to finally be able to actually progress the kingdom building, but I am worried.

Yeesh. I guess I am glad I backed this game to get made, but also glad I didn't have time to start playing it yet.

It started now! Phew.

Whoa, the main city got nice all of a sudden. Doesnt look like some place we just had thrown together yesterday anymore.
Also you can apparently lose advisors if you dont follow their advise... that is not nice.

I'm at the point where I want to make a ton of cool parties...but it is PROHIBITIVELY expensive to recruit the custom companions. Boo hiss!

So I'm just magic-ing up some gold to have some fun.

I rolled up an Eldritch Archer and just hit 5th level!

The description of arcane weapon says I can add a property (like flaming, cold, etc.) to my weapon. Cool! I'm just not sure how. I'll activate the ability and it will transform my bow into a +2 bow... But how do I toggle on one of the other options? (Like +1 Keen, or +1 Flaming)

Thanks!

Haven't played one, but that ability will probably be on your A sub-bar. That is, you've got (up to) three sub-bars off your quickbar, S for spells, A for Abilities, B for Bags. (at least I think that's what B means.) You should have an icon in the A bar that will use the power. It might be a toggle, and if you have more than one element option, it may in turn have sub-icons that pop up when you click it, so you can choose which buff you want.

If you're accessing that power a lot, you can drag it off the A bar onto your main quickbar. You might even be able to drag sub-choices for individual elements as separate items. I haven't tried that.

Squee9 wrote:

I'm at the point where I want to make a ton of cool parties...but it is PROHIBITIVELY expensive to recruit the custom companions. Boo hiss!

I don't think it's a spoiler now, so ... if you don't level up before the second Trading Post fight, you can get level 1 companions for 100 gold (it says 500, but only charges you 100 - at least as of a few days ago).

I didn't bother recruiting custom companions until I learned there were no monks, paladin or druid companions in the game. At that point I was probably level 9 and it was a little over 40k to recruit 1 character. If I manage to go back through this game again I'll definitely be filling out my stable of possible companions early on at the super cheap rate.

Finally got through this.
Here and now it feels like one of the most frustrating games I ever played... and also a really good one at times.
Some of it due to bugs, but really, not just that. The developers either hate their players or are clueless about what they were doing. Malor was spot on earlier about them being mean DMs.
The devs have no idea on how to balance between what they can do and what they ought to do. Lots of things felt excessive in their desire to challenge - and frustrate.
For example at some point in the game they carelessly throws unremovable debuffs on you that essentially make spell casting impossible. Or randomly takes companions permanently away from you (some of which might be bugs, not entirely sure) - which to be fair, a lot of games do, and it nearly always is awful - but in a game where your team needs to run like a really well-tuned machine all the time, it is another frustratingly bad decision. Just the wrong way to add challenge.

For the middle part of the game, combat worked really well and was fun. Which is also why I cant simply conclude that I should have lowered the difficulty for a better experience - which I thought was the issue early on, but then maybe 75% of the game felt fairly balanced. The start and ending just didn't. The start might have been patched better now however.
There is also lots of choice to be made, some of them even matters... which is certainly not a bad thing in an RPG.

Then there is the kingdom management, which just feels irrelevant most of the time, and annoying at others. Lots of people seem to have had issues with your kingdom getting destroyed (to the point of the devs quickly patching in an option to make it indestructibly). I never had that problem - but it all just felt like a pointless additional system that never amounted to anything other than adding a time limit stress factor.

It might actually be one of the first WRPGs, that I can think of anyway, that follows through on the basic premise of having to hurry to 'save the world'. Typically you can just take your sweet time. Here it seems like nearly all important quests had time limits, most of them invisible (another quite bad decision, at least give some indication).

Yet I cant get entirely rid of a desire for another run at the game some day. When the combat was good at the middle of the game, I was ready to start a new playthrough immediately, but after the last part of the game... yeah, no, not now. This still needs a loooot of patches, and preferably, a thorough rebalancing effort in some areas, either by the devs or mods.

I'm still plugging away at this and still enjoying my time with it but it definitely has parts that feel like slogs (clicking that skip to next day button until something magically unlocks in the world) and I've run across several quests that seemed waaaaay too vague. I've ended up googling a few quests because I didn't even know where to start with them. After seeing the answers my first thought was usually "And how in the world was I supposed to know that?"