Pillars of Eternity 2

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Wrathbone
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Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Wrathbone » Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:22 pm

I’ve just finished a second run through Pillars 2 with all the DLC and I need to gush about it a bit. I seem to remember doing similar after my first run, but that was back on PW and the game deserves more attention than it gets. It’s extraordianary, and the content improvements from patches and DLC (well... 2 of the 3) have only made it better. I know many didn’t enjoy Pillars 1, but this is distinct and superior in a multitude of ways - the story is sprawling, engaging and occasionally profound, the tone is now upbeat rather than po-faced, the world is reactive to your choices and unique aspects of your character and it’s one of the best seafaring / pirating games I’ve ever played. If anyone wants to play it but can’t face the slog of Pillars 1 first, seriously, just read the plot summary on Wikipedia and get stuck into Deadfire.

The DLC, while not essential, is mostly excellent, with each one focused around a different god. Beast of Winter and Forgotten Sanctum are substantial adventures in their own right, and the consequences of them also integrate impressively into the main story. Seeker, Slayer, Survivor is still decent but it’s little more than a series of arena battles with some lore draped over them.

For me, Pillars 2 is up there with Witcher 3 as one of the modern RPG benchmarks. It is a rich world worth exploring, brimming with secrets and adventures and political turmoil which you can influence or manipulate in subtle or overt ways. It’s a story about colonial exploitation, a divine civil war and the value of reality itself. And pirates. Lots of pirates. Everyone who loves a good RPG should give it the time it deserves.

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Sly Boots » Fri Nov 01, 2019 6:03 pm

Saw this today for £8.75 so decided to finally take the plunge. Won't get the chance to fire it up this evening I don't think so may dive in over the weekend.

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Sly Boots » Mon Nov 04, 2019 1:23 pm

I'm quite enjoying this. I've finished the first island, spent a little while sailing my ship around the archipelago and happening across a couple of dungeons, and just reached the first major city in the main questline.

I still feel like I haven't really got to grips with the combat yet, due in part no doubt to my eyes glazing over every time I try to read about the mechanics and various types of stat and how they all interact. So, my fault I guess, however it just seems unnecessarily dense. I'm also playing in turn-based mode and struggling a bit with my wizard NPC, in that his spells take a turn to charge up, so by the time he fires off his fireball or whatever aoe spell I've put on the ground, the enemies have already scarpered off somewhere else.

The AI also absolutely despises the little Orlan pistoleer you pick up after first setting sail. Despite not doing the most damage nor having the least hp, he gets focus fired down within the first couple of rounds of combat every single time, no matter how far back I keep him (which essentially removes him from the fight as the pistols don't have stellar range). Hit my tank, dammit :x

It is good, though, and looking forward to playing more. Stumbling across an uncharted island, finding a lengthy dungeon and then getting decent rewards at the end of it is fun.

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Wrathbone » Mon Nov 04, 2019 1:29 pm

Hooray, someone else actually played it! :lol:

While the turn-based mode was an interesting addition, I don't think it works very well as the game is still very much based around real-time actions. I still don't understand most of the combat rules, despite having played POE1 and 2 twice each, so my advice is that unless you're determined to have a challenge, drop the difficulty and don't worry about the details. The story is the strength of POE, particularly the second game.

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Sly Boots » Mon Nov 04, 2019 1:51 pm

I'm playing on classic mode, I think, so essentially normal mode. It's not that it's hard as such - I haven't lost an encounter yet nor even had a character go down aside from the poor little Orlan dude, who manages to attract aggro from warriors on the far edge of the battlefield, who come hurtling through my lines to hack at him, when his own attacks make rather sad *phut* noises that would struggle to harm an asthmatic beetle... honestly it's more funny than frustating, as I can't work out what he's doing to piss them off so much.

So, it's not that it's hard so much, more than I have a constant niggling feeling I'm playing ridiculously sub-optimally. I've read you should have different weapon sets to face different enemy types (at a basic level, slashing damage vs lightly armoured enemies, bludgeoning damage against heavily armoured ones), so I may try to do a bit more of that than I have been doing.

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by DjchunKfunK » Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:14 pm

Wrathbone wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 1:29 pm
Hooray, someone else actually played it! :lol:
I played it, think I posted about it in the WIP thread last year. I enjoyed it and think it's a decent game but I don't have any amazing memories of my time with the game. It was one of those games that just came and went.

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Sly Boots » Thu Nov 07, 2019 4:31 pm

I have to say I am enjoying this hugely at the moment.

I've just spent at least half a dozen hours delving my way through a multi map dungeon I found pretty much by chance in the main city you reach in the storyline. I went into a new area of the city, a slum, and saw someone being winched down into the depths as presumably a death sentence. I then spoke to the magistrate who sent him down, who seemed surprised by my request to go down as well. "But it is certain death!" he told me, eyes wide. "Nah, I'll be fine", I thought.

I wasn't quite expecting what awaited. At level 6, as I was then, most enemies down there were several levels above me, and after a rest to heal following an early encounter, the lift I'd come down in fucked off (he'd told me it would be there for 12 hours, I guess it didn't really occur to me he'd follow through on that :lol:), meaning my only option was to plough ahead and hope I'd find another way out.

What followed was really interesting. Some of the fights were tough, including one where you're suddenly surrounded by enemies on all sides. It required real strategic thinking and each time I won was a real 'yes!' moment. I didn't die or have to reload at all, and was able to rest to recover from injuries and so on. It also started to drop equipment way better than I already had, so always felt like progress was being made. Then I solved a puzzle to open a temple door, and stumbled into a fight with a 50-foot tall boss with not just three skulls (indicating 3+ levels above me, as many of the other enemies I'd faced had), but three red skulls, indicating almost certain death. That fight took well over half an hour, just whittling it down while trying to hold off all the (still pretty scary) mobs it was summoning, but in the end it fell and with our remaining party members were able to mop up the rest. I think I actually punched the air :lol:

That was a real high point for me, and I'm feeling suitably seasoned by the combat we went through down in the depths. When I came back up another quest got us caught up in the middle of two feuding noble houses, which resulted in them both going hostile towards me and me having to fight my way out of their bases directly through them... compared to the gigantic red-skull boss it was a doddle, it was actually quite amusing how easily we cut them down and nicked all their stuff.

Enjoying it so much I went ahead and got the DLC expansions for a princely £4 each, can see myself quite happily working my way through this for some time to come.

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Wrathbone
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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Wrathbone » Thu Nov 07, 2019 5:13 pm

Beast of Winter is a great bit of DLC, but make a full save before you start it! It depends whether you’re using scaled levelling, but there is a potential difficulty spike which I couldn’t possibly have won and I had to reload and come back at a much higher level.

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Sly Boots » Thu Nov 07, 2019 5:56 pm

Thanks for the tip, I shall watch out for that :)

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Re: Pillars of Eternity 2

Post by Sly Boots » Fri Nov 15, 2019 11:52 am

I'm still playing this. Having a blast still, can't believe I didn't give this my attention until now.

It's an absolute beast too, at 85 hours played I've only recently hit the level cap, still have main quest stuff going on but have started on the first DLC expansion. I'd be amazed if I finish this in under 100 hours.

I don't really have any complaints, honestly. I guess if I was quibbling there's been an awful lot of back-tracking back and forth across the archipelago for side quests and so on, but even then you're in your ship, shanties are happening and it's all quite atmospheric.

One aspect I've barely touched though is the choose-your-own-adventure style ship to ship combat. I've done some mainly out of a vague obligation that I should, but it's a bit baffling as it serves no purpose when you can instead board immediately and duke it out in an isometric battle, which is much more fun. It feels like you should only be able to board having whittled the other ship's health down or immobilised them, to give that other aspect more importance - it may even have started out that way in development before they realised it wasn't that much fun.

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