Jump to content
Double Fine Action Forums
Sign in to follow this  
Vadimir

Some random pre-patch .90 thoughts

Recommended Posts

(Most of these notes were written before the latest patch .90)

By now I have five playthroughs of Massice Chalice. Here's my feedback.

First of all let me congratulate you guys for making an awesome game with a nice, distinct flavor and some great concepts. I have really, really enjoyed playing it during Steam Early Acces.

As for now, December 2014, the game is not just playable but thoroughly enjoyable.

The game certainly has a learning curve. I've been through five plays and I've improved each and every time. The game's hard, but if you strike the right balance and have the right building order - AND some prime genetic material for regents - it's possible to beat the game.

UI/GUI

#####

- All over the UI is pretty smooth and I like the fact that you can upgrade skill points from pretty much everywhere.

- I'd like to see Hit Points on the basic page when choosing the loadout. Early game and when you're low on heroes and have to make choices I need to know the HP as it affects the choice of item (maybe Healing or Vitaliband when it's a low-HP hero).

- GUI is a little sluggish with anti-alias on. Pleas make it faster and more responsive.

- Maybe add a sound when you hit Esc and gets to the menu. The UI could have a more snappy, precise and edgy feel. It's "soft" now.

- I like the way you name the game and then when you save it's used as the prefix. When saving I'd like to be able to see the list of savegames so I can add the appropriate number to the save (MyGame01, MyGame02, ....). If you hit Save but forgot which number you reached you'll have to waste time going back to check the number. In patch .90 you have to click with the mouse to change the savegame name: not good, please set focus.

- I lose my bearings when unfolding/folding the hero detail on the (long) list of heroes, especially in late-game. It's especially bad when the personality and traits are many and the name is pushed up and out of sight. At least keep the name/basic-stats bar at the top of the list, or color code so that the selected hero is easily identified.

- There's way too much orange-on-yellow-on-white: which skill did I chose, where's that flask gonna land in that foilage, etc.? Even if I don't have an eye handicap the low-contrast is going to cause trouble for some players who need high-contrast to see it. So add a thicker or differently colored outline to skills and flask markers and/or play with the colors depending on the ground.

Gameplay

########

- I'm loathe to say this, but the Ramcab Caber is currently close to OP, or the alternatives are just not good enough. In a sense I think the caberjack needs this or there just wouldn't be much stopping power left in the class. What I don't like is this: relics and the Timefist are NEVER a match for the Ramcab caber. Like, who'd want to Timefist a single enemy when you can just knock two or three enemies against a wall, or each other, stunning or killing all of them? Also, who'd want a relic caber that can ONLY ever hit one target but without any tactical advantage from the auto-knockback that comes with every blow from the Ramcab caber? Now, if the Timefist was able to knockback like the Ramcab, but still had Timefist and (of course) lowered damage it would be fun. Or else the damage has to be buffed WAY up on the Timefist and relics to make them worth their research. And who'd want to logjam when it doesn't have knockback/stun? Don't get me wrong: the ramcab caber is one of those immensely satisfying items that really makes the game shine. It's just that it makes everything else irrelevant.

- Alchemist relics have the same issue as Caberjack relics: they're just underpowered. Once you get the Boom Slinger it largely invalidates the relics. I notice that much is better with .90

- Alchemist Unstable Carapace armor: more trouble than it's worth (like bee armor thingy in .90 and, well, bees in general). Now, if the armor exploded ONLY in the direction of enemies (or just the one that hit you) it would be useful. Maybe if the armor spewed some acid at the attacker and that did something akin to the Acid Solution skill, maybe even Armor Corrosion? Anyway, the huge trouble is that it hits weakly and indiscriminately, and I just never rush my Alchemists int the thick of battle.

Battle and controls

###################

- If the hunter's first move is stealth, consider making it the default (somehow) for the second move too (especially when the Veil armor is on). I'm good now, but when inexperienced I moved too many hunters while forgetting stealth during the second move.

- Shouldn't the Unstable Carapace armor explode one last time when the hero dies?

- Bug: if your hunter is the last hero with action points and he has Scoot, then typing "Z" will not only bring up the info but End Turn too, thus forfeiting the Scoot move!

- Throw Ultralixir icon can easily be mistaken for a flask throw and vice versa. How 'bout a hand over the healing bottle?

- Some spawning points are horrible, especially if it splits up the party. Also, in those Keep Attacks it's just not good that those stupid sagewrights are stranded all the way over there with their puny hammers while the entire party is placed at some random, far away point. Sagewrights, being unarmed, should have a Safe Room.

- Lapses and level 10 heroes: it is beyond annoying that ANY hit from a lapse will cause a level 10 to instantly lose a level. Compare to a level 9 that may be hit several times before dropping to level 8. Could the level 10's have at least a buffer of 500 potential XP beyond the max (towards a theoretical level 11)? Of course such experience will have to be earned, but it would allow 1-2 hits that didn't auto-level you down.

Kingdom management

##################

- It would be great if items were cheaper to research or had a whole separate research tree. Items aren't like the other research options because there's a limit on the number of items heroes can bring to battle: so more items would allow for more experimentation, more fun and more clever tactics. With the harsh limit on research I just never get to experiment as there's always just one more thing I need.

- Related to the above: if you're not going to increase the access to items more readily at least provide some more information on what the research will lead to.

- Random events: as a concept random events are great. What I don't like at the moment is the fact that the outcome is random as well: I've made the same choice several times and had completely different outcomes (for instance it sure ain't the same Parabox being built every time). It's just too much "same choice, different outcome" It makes me feel powerless and when it's a random, negative effect it just feels pointless and unfair. If you have to ... at least make the choices dilemmas: y'know, hard choices of either one or the other. Rule: you can get some of the good stuff, but there's a trade-off.

- During Keep Attacks suddenly the loadout of regents & partners become important. At least allow me to chose the loadout before battle: once for the party of heroes, then one for the regents. At the very, very least auto-equip the regents with any upgraded weapon, armor and random items. OK, notice you've done some Double Fine work on this in patch .90, not perfect, but please go in that direction (now you need to auto equip those boneshell armors as well)

- In some earlier games, especially when I had very few heroes, the marriage choices were hell. For instance I pick a male Regent only to then discover that no female partners are available, but had I picked that one woman I'd have had maybe 5 male partners to chose from. You HAVE to provide extra info so that players don't reach such dead ends.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last bit:

- BUG: I got one random event called "Null". "Null" on headline, description and button. It was almost game breaking as the UI became unresponsive (couldn't start timer), but luckily I could reload the earlier battle and it went away as the game re-seeded. Maybe armor the code with some exception handling to avoid this?

- BUG in patch .90: in a Sagewright Guild attack (keep attack) one of my sagewrights had "null" for a weapon. That meant he couldn't move at all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Last bit:

- BUG: I got one random event called "Null". "Null" on headline, description and button. It was almost game breaking as the UI became unresponsive (couldn't start timer), but luckily I could reload the earlier battle and it went away as the game re-seeded. Maybe armor the code with some exception handling to avoid this?

- BUG in patch .90: in a Sagewright Guild attack (keep attack) one of my sagewrights had "null" for a weapon. That meant he couldn't move at all.

I think these have been identified by the MC Team, but might be worth digging into the bug forum here as well.

Smiles

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
- I'm loathe to say this, but the Ramcab Caber is currently close to OP, or the alternatives are just not good enough. In a sense I think the caberjack needs this or there just wouldn't be much stopping power left in the class. What I don't like is this: relics and the Timefist are NEVER a match for the Ramcab caber.

- Alchemist relics have the same issue as Caberjack relics: they're just underpowered. Once you get the Boom Slinger it largely invalidates the relics. I notice that much is better with .90

This is literally the only time I have ever seen someone suggest that Cadence weapons outpace Relics. I'd encourage you to spend more time building up the latter, because they blow the Cadence options completely out of the water in terms of their damage output in the long run.

The Ramcap caber is the only one that even comes close to staying relevant, but ultimately the power of semi-reliable stuns gets hugely outstripped by a level 10 Caberjack with a maxed out Relic running amok in a Kill Rage. And this will only become more dramatic once the knockback-damage bug gets cleaned up once and for all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This is literally the only time I have ever seen someone suggest that Cadence weapons outpace Relics. I'd encourage you to spend more time building up the latter, because they blow the Cadence options completely out of the water in terms of their damage output in the long run.

There's a first for everything :) Thing is that I have built up a cool caber relic once, and in raw damage output it sure did outstrip the ramcab caber. However, I found that often I did not put down even that one target. Even if I did and enemies are clustered around me I happen to personally prefer the tactical advantages that come with the highly reliable, multiple stun that a ramcab caber potentially delivers. And yes, it's as reliable as anything in the game as it's just a question of your accuracy (even caberjack Knockback needs accuracy).

I haven't done the exact math on it, but I suspect that in the long run a ramcab caber will deliver more damage output that the best caber relic. Here's why I suspect that is: even the highest damage can only take out one enemy, but you'll frequently smash two or even three enemies together and get the "double damage" (once for the hit, once when hitting the wall). And that's not counting the strategic advantage you've just given yourself by stunning the enemy.

But maybe I've just not seen all there is to see wrt. to caber relics, so I might change my mind in the face of new information.

Then there are the games where I just happen to get no caber relics. In that case there's absolutely no contest. Who in their right mind could recommend a Timefist caber over the Ramcab? In my view the potential AoE when pummeling several enemies that are lined up, and the tactical advantage of now stuned enemies, is just too good to pass up. Besides, if we want high damage output there's now the brewtalist: excellent damage, and over the top with Hack'n'Slash + Relic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...