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Default Age of Decadence - Public Beta Released

March 23rd, 2012, 21:38
AoD is cool for a variety of reasons, but the quest structure is a bit too obtuse for my liking. Beyond clicking all available NPCs in town and just getting a lot of "I don't have anything to say to you right now", the primary quest seems rather impenetrable. I know combat is supposed to be difficult, but when my disguise and sneak skills aren't up to the task either the game makes it hard for me not to draw the conclusion that I've exhausted all available options.
Last edited by Demiath; March 23rd, 2012 at 22:11.
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March 23rd, 2012, 22:19
Just played a bit, and definitely combat IS difficult (at least, for an Assassin). Indeed every enemy seems to fight for its own life .
Anyway, I felt like the sensation to reading a bookgame, especially when you reach important places: it definitely requires a different approach compared to other RPGs imho.

I'm not a noob, I'm just differently skilled.
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March 23rd, 2012, 22:22
The game started out with me guarding a merchant. Suffice to say, I chose to attack the assassin and got destroyed. I had no idea he would be way above my skill, so I'm hoping the game isn't full of these kinds of "trial-and-error" situations.
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March 23rd, 2012, 22:58
Depends on what you mean by trial-and-error. The demo is full of situations where you need to pay very close attention to what you do (there is no filler combat or no introductory "learn how to play" sections). In addition, you need to have decent builds to make it through some situations. Especially combat as that's the hardest part of the game.
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March 23rd, 2012, 23:18
Originally Posted by Starwars View Post
Depends on what you mean by trial-and-error. The demo is full of situations where you need to pay very close attention to what you do (there is no filler combat or no introductory "learn how to play" sections). In addition, you need to have decent builds to make it through some situations. Especially combat as that's the hardest part of the game.
I guess it has me worried since it was the very first "quest" of the game, and the assassin wiped the floor with me. I don't think I was given any kind of clue as to how ridiculously strong he was.

I do want to see more, so I'll likely start again and this time I'll wuss out when given the choice
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March 23rd, 2012, 23:30
Originally Posted by Fargol View Post
I don't think I was given any kind of clue as to how ridiculously strong he was.
You definitely need a different mindset to most RPGs. As mentioned, there is no filler combat.

Think real life. You're a newby "adventurer" (of whatever class) - what makes you think you're equipped to take on an assassin who has presumably killed before? You haven't.

In most RPGs, everyone in the game is either a quest kiosk or designed to be killed by the player - that isn't the case here. Not everyone will like that (don't know if I like it - haven't played enough).

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March 23rd, 2012, 23:41
Pretty much what Dhruin says. The approach in AoD is that you're just a human being, the same as whoever you're fighting. Most games are designed with clear advantages to the player character, but this isn't the case in AoD. In fact, many times the odds are stacked against you and you need to go through with good tactics and skill-use.

And yeah, it's definitely not meant for everyone. And the game doesn't give you warnings at all. It is very much designed for those who will be stubborn to reload until they find the right tactic.
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March 23rd, 2012, 23:53
I really wish I will like this game since I've been thinking about it as some sort of a potential indie RPG flagship. I've only played for a short while and the truth is I don't particularly like neither what I see in the game nor what I read here.

Its looks are extremely dull and… brown and I quickly grew tired mostly of the uncomfortable font and the camera controls. I also predict from what I read here that I will find it frustrating due to its difficulty and severity. Not to mention that I don't like that my character might end up being unplayable at all - games like Fallout were very appealing to me because, within reason, you could make any character build work.

I'm sure that overcoming all the above will result in a rewarding experience but 'dull', 'tiring' and 'frustrating' are words that could very well describe my job and it's also very rewarding when I manage to get through a bad day without punching someone and when I receive my payment. So I already have the pleasure of one such experience with more tangible rewards and I wouldn't want a second one unless I was to get paid for it.

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Just some first thoughts… as I said, for some reason I want to like this game, so I'm willing to give it a fair chance.

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March 24th, 2012, 00:02
First off the graphics is really impressive for an indie RPG, I haven't seen any other indie RPG look this good….. well until legend of grimrock is released of course. That's a huge improvement from the combat demo!

I tried the loremaster and I have to say I was a bit dissapointed with getting so few options in a lot of situations. Actually at least in the beginning, I didn't have a choice, I just had to go with the default. Going to try another build and see if I get some more options.
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March 24th, 2012, 00:09
The starting little 'vignettes' tend to be linear and just a quick little introduction to the game and what your "job" tends to do in the world.

Like it's been pointed out before, sometimes the game does feel like it doesn't give you a choice (skill check dialogues are hidden when you are not close to the threshold). But believe me, the amount of choice in the demo alone is pretty mindboggling overall and goes far beyond any game that I can think of in terms of the quests.
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March 24th, 2012, 00:19
I am starting to notice after some more playing…. is the black end an area which will be in the full game? or does a place simply end like that?

I actually found the vignettes changed quite some with certain skills set to a certain level which would fit with my chosen class.
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March 24th, 2012, 00:31
I'll check it out. Hoping it's good.
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March 24th, 2012, 06:52
Originally Posted by GothicGothicness View Post
I am starting to notice after some more playing…. is the black end an area which will be in the full game? or does a place simply end like that?

I actually found the vignettes changed quite some with certain skills set to a certain level which would fit with my chosen class.
Yes, the game doesn't show you choices (skillchecks) that are too far out of the range of skill of your current character. But you may often be surprised when you replay with a differently skilledcharacter.
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March 24th, 2012, 07:16
Originally Posted by GhanBuriGhan View Post
Yes, the game doesn't show you choices (skillchecks) that are too far out of the range of skill of your current character. But you may often be surprised when you replay with a differently skilledcharacter.
Yep.. I've started twice, both times with a Loremaster, but with different level skills. For instance, I was able to identify an artifact at the beginning with a higher lore skill, and it resulted in different dialogue and more money to start with.

This game definitely doesn't screw around though. Make a poor decision and you're dead. I made the mistake of threatening the leader of the Thieve's Guild and quickly found myself in an unwinnable fight.

I love how detailed the world is, but I'm disappointed in how few things you can actually interact with. Haven't played long enough to form an overall opinion yet though..
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March 24th, 2012, 07:38
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I love how detailed the world is, but I'm disappointed in how few things you can actually interact with. Haven't played long enough to form an overall opinion yet though..
Yes, there is a lot more to do now than in the early beta, but world interactivity is not a strong point of the game. Vince and co. have a deeply ingrained aversion to everything that may seem like filler - at times this makes the game feel a bit barebones. The meat really is in the C&C design and the TB combat.
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March 24th, 2012, 10:18
I've got two quests that require me to go to camps outside of the city, but I can't figure out how to reach them. Is it possible to travel to those areas in the Beta?
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March 24th, 2012, 10:28
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I've got two quests that require me to go to camps outside of the city, but I can't figure out how to reach them. Is it possible to travel to those areas in the Beta?
Sure: just click M for the map to show up, then in the upper right corner you should see "local" and "world", click on "world" and it shows up the world map. The two location are on the left and the right of the city where you start. Look on the lower left of the map (I know, it's a bit tricky as an explanation, but it's the best that I can do).

I'm not a noob, I'm just differently skilled.
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March 24th, 2012, 10:46
I really like what I am seeing.

I played as a praetor but didn't have to fight a single fight until the end of the demo(*) (unless you count foolishly stumbling into an ambush and dying) The downside to this is that I can't comment on the combat system yet but I'll do a replay soon to see how it goes. The only thing I found strange in my extremely short melee was that when those two ruffians outflanked me for some reason I could not move out of the way and I seemed to lose my turn when I tried (probably something I need to figure out).

Good atmosphere and the game actually looks better than I expected it so satisfied from those aspects too. Looking forward to this sometime this year hopefully…

(* Even a couple of skillpoints in Lore or streetwise open up different options in dialog and ways to complete objectives without resorting to combat it seems. Bit of Troika vibe there, definitely my kind of game. )

Edit: Will hold them to the promise of more exploration given in the after demo blurb screen

Edit2: I have to point out though that this will probably be a very short game if one takes the non-combat route, or at least that is the impression I got. I am never too thrilled for very short games but this one's strength seems to be in replaying to try out all the different approaches and CnC and I' am all for replays

I hope though that it is not 100% possible to avoid combat for the whole game, unless all situations are really presented in a plausible way (no complaints so far)…
Last edited by JonNik; March 24th, 2012 at 11:21.
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March 24th, 2012, 12:22
Originally Posted by Ball_Breaker View Post
Sure: just click M for the map to show up, then in the upper right corner you should see "local" and "world", click on "world" and it shows up the world map. The two location are on the left and the right of the city where you start. Look on the lower left of the map (I know, it's a bit tricky as an explanation, but it's the best that I can do).
Thanks… I've finished the Beta, or at least I've reached one of the possible endings.

Spoiler – Beta ended when..


Combat system seems very good, and the writing is above average from what I've seen. I'll most likely be purchasing at release.
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March 24th, 2012, 15:18
I tried it out. The graphics are nice and impressive, but I couldn't get over the clunky and awkward camera system. It just was too cumbersome and annoying after a short time of playing to want to deal with. I did like the graphics as I said, some of the art style as well was good, and the story line seemed cool, but it isn't for me because of the camera control I'm afraid.
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