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February 17th, 2014, 17:14
Still grinding through IWD1. Heart of Winter was a more than welcome change in pace. Trials of Luremaster may well be the worst time I've had playing anything in years. I know this was a free DLC in its time but it's been as pleasant as fingernails on a chalkboard.

I'd just like to interject here and point out that I'm not going to say anything to spoil the mood, Chief. I'll just float here and watch. Don't mind me, just sitting here, floating and watching, that's me.
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February 17th, 2014, 17:34
Originally Posted by Kostas View Post
it's been as pleasant as fingernails on a chalkboard.
Hey I adored to do that back in school!

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February 17th, 2014, 17:50
I remember enjoying Trials of the Luremaster, although I recall it was quite difficult if you weren't prepared for it. I like that it adds some monster types that aren't in the main game or Heart of Winter.
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February 17th, 2014, 17:58
It's built on level-scaling, respawning and spawning mobs out of nowhere, things that modern games get ripped apart for. Add to that the fact that all that is applied to trash mobs which are IWD's defining difference and you get a very ugly mix.

I'd just like to interject here and point out that I'm not going to say anything to spoil the mood, Chief. I'll just float here and watch. Don't mind me, just sitting here, floating and watching, that's me.
Last edited by Kostas; February 17th, 2014 at 18:17.
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February 17th, 2014, 19:43
I don't recall much level-scaling in IWD, and if it's there then it's very subtle. There isn't much of a difference between the way they do things in TotL and the rest of the game, so I find it odd that you dislike TotL yet seem to be enjoying IWD in general.

Anyways, I thought the setting was a nice change of pace from the ice and snow of the Dale, but yeah, it's mostly about combat and loot.
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February 17th, 2014, 20:17
Originally Posted by Kostas View Post
It's built on level-scaling, respawning and spawning mobs out of nowhere, things that modern games get ripped apart for. Add to that the fact that all that is applied to trash mobs which are IWD's defining difference and you get a very ugly mix.
I'm guessing you are still outside of castle? Once you get inside, story picks up and more enjoyable hang in there!

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Default What games are you playing now?

February 17th, 2014, 21:23
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I don't recall much level-scaling in IWD, and if it's there then it's very subtle. There isn't much of a difference between the way they do things in TotL and the rest of the game, so I find it odd that you dislike TotL yet seem to be enjoying IWD in general.



Anyways, I thought the setting was a nice change of pace from the ice and snow of the Dale, but yeah, it's mostly about combat and loot.
Well I won't say I'm enjoying IWD, music, pretty artwork and HoW aside, but to my knowledge TotL is the only case where level scaling is being used and mob spawning works in such an erratic way.

Originally Posted by purpleblob View Post
I'm guessing you are still outside of castle? Once you get inside, story picks up and more enjoyable hang in there!

I'm actually just before the last fight. The dozens upon dozens level scaled trash mobs that littered the dungeons were hardly better. Makes me appreciate TotSC and the encounters of BG2 a bit more.

I'd just like to interject here and point out that I'm not going to say anything to spoil the mood, Chief. I'll just float here and watch. Don't mind me, just sitting here, floating and watching, that's me.
Last edited by Kostas; February 17th, 2014 at 21:41.
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February 17th, 2014, 23:31
I've never been a fan of the expansions to Icewind Dale, I always play it 'pure' as my review of the HoW expansion explains:

http://www.gamebanshee.com/forums/?f…rb_v=viewtopic

The idea that the original IWD is just a loot finder is generally absurd. While loot is nice and an integral part of the game (like any RPG), it's not the core of game-play, it just seems like that for want of another descriptor. The loot in the original IWD is actually extremely sparse, mean even. You can go virtually the whole game without finding a belt for some characters, for example, and in my last game the Druid went without a Staff upgrade until about half way through the game - literally just wielding a stick for half the game.

The essence of IWD is many-fold, but loot is not high on that list. The shining points of interest are:

1) Tactical game-play. If you like your battles to be tactical and you consider yourself a bit of a tactician and you are drawn to games of a tactical nature.

2) Vast character choice and varied specialisations within those choices, vastly expanding the combinations and replayability of the tactical aspect.

3) The epic nature of the story which pulls you to all kinds of varied locations and creatures you wouldn't find in any other game. Really, every single screen is a plethora of brand new creatures with very little repetition and most certainly no level scaling. Even the early undead area has skeletons, zombies, Yetis, shadows, Giant Worms, Guardians, Whites, evil Clerics, Ghasts, Mummies, the list of monsters all packed into a few small opening crypts is breathtaking - all requiring different skills to overcome. Most RPGs just shove 'standard monster' in front of you on a recycled basis.

4) The number of actually difficult encounters is large and won't always follow the usual RPG tradition. In one of the above crypts, for example, the end boss meets you at the entrance, then you fight all the minions further in the crypt after you have killed the main boss. Like-wise, the many traps and monster 'set-ups' includes no end of genuine variety which is 'intelligently' designed rather than 'idiot AI' based, such as the infamous 'bridge' encounter upon entering Dorn's Deep upper area.

5) The game does offer you quite a lot of opportunities not to fight if you so choose - something no loot game could comprehend nor desire.

6) None of the quests make you scream "why am I doing this?" as all the quests are properly immersive within the confines of the main plot. Some quests you receive from almost the start aren't even completeable until quite a long way into the story, they are things you notice along the way rather than specifically go to a random pointless destination for.

There's lots more, but, yes, it's not really just a loot game, not by a long shot (if you'll excuse the tactical pun).
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February 18th, 2014, 02:03
Originally Posted by Kostas View Post
I'm actually just before the last fight. The dozens upon dozens level scaled trash mobs that littered the dungeons were hardly better. Makes me appreciate TotSC and the encounters of BG2 a bit more.
Aahh, I see. Sorry to hear you aren't enjoying it I didn't really notice level scales… but by then I was so tired of combats, I turned down difficulty to lowest

But I did enjoy the overall story of TotL! Btw, I hated the last battle of TotL so prepare yourself

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February 18th, 2014, 02:20
I can understand not enjoying IWD. IMO, IWD is by far the weakest of the IE games. Very combat heavy with lots of trash mob encounters that aren't really difficult or interesting and the story was meh compared to BG and PST for me.

Not sure if IWD 2 was any better, I think I stopped 6 or so hours into it.
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February 18th, 2014, 03:20
I'm not enjoying IWD2 at the moment, even with the NPC mod. But then again, I don't know if its fair comparison since I dislike 3rd edition.

I also think IWD1 NPC mod > IWD2 NPC mod. I'm still in early stage of the game (chapter 1 or 2, I can't remember), so I'm hoping it will get better later on in the game.

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February 18th, 2014, 03:35
Originally Posted by greywolf00 View Post
with lots of trash mob encounters that aren't really difficult or interesting
Such as?
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February 18th, 2014, 04:05
Been awhile since I played so my memory isn't perfect but the beginning - nonstop goblins /orcs. No real challenge till the end of the first cave.

I vividly remember goblins being reused a lot in one of the towers, and I believe skeletons were thrown in too. Sure, some fights were a bit different but, most of the encounters were bland and rather pointless fodder.

Even the Nagas. Fight 'em once, figure out what they do, repeat for awhile before killing boss. Same went with the Giants, though if memory serves that was at least a tough fight.

The Palace had the Drueger all over the place (though I will admit I do recall that area being better than most of the rest) as well as the human assassins.

Also the crypt had the occasional surprise but still mostly killing the same low threat/challenge stuff.

Ah yes, and trolls on the ice paths. The art is far more memorable to me than the rest of the game. And Yetis.
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February 18th, 2014, 04:23
Not sure what is up for contention. About 90% of the main game is spent fighting trash mobs between the dungeon bosses.

I'd just like to interject here and point out that I'm not going to say anything to spoil the mood, Chief. I'll just float here and watch. Don't mind me, just sitting here, floating and watching, that's me.
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February 18th, 2014, 04:34
Originally Posted by Kostas View Post
Not sure what is up for contention. About 90% of the main game is spent fighting trash mobs between the dungeon bosses.
That's pretty much how I remember it
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February 18th, 2014, 04:58
Been awhile since I played so my memory isn't perfect but the beginning - nonstop goblins /orcs. No real challenge till the end of the first cave.
One small cave of Orcs. The most popular Youtube let's play of Icewind Dale has characters dying during this encounter, long before the Ogre boss. Yes, there are lots of Goblins on the way to Kuldahar, because that's what the story requires, a sense of invasion.

I vividly remember goblins being reused a lot in one of the towers, and I believe skeletons were thrown in too. Sure, some fights were a bit different but, most of the encounters were bland and rather pointless fodder.
There's one or two Goblin encounters in the towers on the first couple of floors. The ones on the second floor present a very real and deadly tactical headache. There's one section of skeletons which are all really quite brutal.

You complain about a lack of story, but it seems you didn't take any notice of the story - the towers got sent into stasis during a Goblin siege of the towers where the Goblins were about to claim victory… and you think there was too many of them running around? Ok… where's the sense of them being 'reused' as opposed to 'plot-relevant'?

Even the Nagas. Fight 'em once, figure out what they do, repeat for awhile before killing boss. Same went with the Giants, though if memory serves that was at least a tough fight.
There's only one room with Nagas in. If you think one room is too many… There's only one 'room' of Giants. If you think one room of giants is too many…

The Palace had the Drueger all over the place (though I will admit I do recall that area being better than most of the rest) as well as the human assassins.
It didn't have druegar all over the place, it had Orogs all over the place and about 9 or 10 Druegar all of whom posed a significant risk.

Also the crypt had the occasional surprise but still mostly killing the same low threat/challenge stuff.
I have no idea which crypt this was? I'm a seasoned min/max'er and the only battle I had to reload in my last game was a battle in one of the crypts.

Ah yes, and trolls on the ice paths. The art is far more memorable to me than the rest of the game. And Yetis.
Yes, at the Ice Museum they do fill the grounds with repetative Trolls and Yetis - that was the only area that sticks out in my mind as like this. I suspect this is because you can choose to not kill a lot of enemies in this area so the devs put in some last-minute exp.

So, from a 60-80 hour game, you can remember two screens which had a bit of genuine fodder. And base a generalised opinion about the whole game from just those two screens. You post even remembers more difficult encounters than it does easy ones. Considering you like plots so much, I'm amazed you even fought the 9 or 10 Giants…

Edit: I'm thinking of the Drows with the Orogs. I'm at a bit of a loss about this supposed excess of Duregars, I can barely remember any. The thieves have a couple of areas they inhabit, because their boss is a crime-lord (who you can choose not to fight)
——————————————————————————————————————————

Not sure what is up for contention. About 90% of the main game is spent fighting trash mobs between the dungeon bosses.
Such as?

What's the difference between a mob and a trash mob?

You want your RPGs to be 100% boss fights?

I watched a bit of M&M X on Youtube, a game you appear to be loving at the moment - they were just hosing down the same spider after the same spider in a dungeon crawl - would you class that as 'trash' mobs?

Edit: The more I think about this, the worse a post it is. There's barely any creatures in Icewind Dale that are not there for a plot-related or environmental reason. In any RPG you will encounter mobs, I have no idea what your point is.
Last edited by MinorityReport; February 18th, 2014 at 05:19.
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February 18th, 2014, 05:07
Joril is a jolly old soul and a jolly old soul is he and is more friendly than hostile and doesn't really give much fright to those who look up, look way up to his hard carved facial features. At first glance, Frost Giants are intimidating but once again, much like our Frost Salamander friend Kerish and his men, they do not attack you at first sight. This of course puts you and your party at an advantage, being allowed to roam freely through their lair and explore it fully so you know what to expect but its building the story this way as well. You see, Joril is also afraid of this person they keep noting as Marketh and it is obvious they would rather speak with you than fight someone who they think is working for Marketh. Once again, I used this to my advantage and when you speak with Joril, give him the impression you are working for Marketh and do everything in your social power to attain the 2ND BADGE without any confrontation. This will earn you lots of experience and also allow your party to walk out of Joril's Lair without a fight against the Frost Giants that Joril leads.
I guess you missed this part…
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February 18th, 2014, 05:19
Fairly pointless to continue this convo, you're clearly a huge fan of IWD and that's fine, just wasn't my cup of tea at all (and I know a lot of people in the same boat). A lot of those encounters you call difficult I disagree with. "Plot relevant" and challenging/interesting are very different things and I much prefer story driven RPGs than combat driven ones. IWD didn't take me anywhere near 60 hours to beat, according to Raptr, beating the full game took me slightly less than 30 hours.
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February 18th, 2014, 05:26
Originally Posted by greywolf00 View Post
Fairly pointless to continue this convo, you're clearly a huge fan of IWD and that's fine, just wasn't my cup of tea at all (and I know a lot of people in the same boat). A lot of those encounters you call difficult I disagree with. "Plot relevant" and challenging/interesting are very different things and I much prefer story driven RPGs than combat driven ones. IWD didn't take me anywhere near 60 hours to beat, according to Raptr, beating the full game took me slightly less than 30 hours.
Fair do's, you're free to say you didn't like it. I'm just setting the record straight about the lying aspects of your posts.

Would it be fair to guess that it only took you 30 hours because you didn't explore every nook and cranny and likely used Haste like it was a drug?
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February 18th, 2014, 05:34
"Lying" is a rather misleading word. Difficulty is highly subjective and will vary widely from player to player and among different party compositions/builds. What one person finds hard another might not. The opinion that IWD has a lot of trash encounters isn't a rare one in my experience.

I never bother to hunt down every nook and cranny as items hardly ever make or break the ability to beat a game and reading lore books has never interested me in anyway shape or form. There's a chance I might have missed a side quest here and there but it's probably not many.
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