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Default Ran out of DoS 2 gas - again :(

October 6th, 2018, 20:55
After fizzling out when I reached Arx last year, I fired up the definitive edition, started a new game, and finished last night.

D:OS2 is a fun, polished, and dense RPG, but no, it's not perfect. I agree with the OP that it's likely a combination of factors that could help keep one's interest in the game through the end as on my first run through the game I was struggling to keep going. Admittedly, I discovered on my 2nd play through that part of losing interest in the game my first time around was my fault, because I wasn't following the story closely enough. The combination of getting some D:OS2 fatigue by arx AND not following the story well enough contributed why I fizzled out first time around. I'll take 50% of the blame for that.

This time around, I think having some knowledge of the game really helped out because I moved through areas at a slightly faster rate (looting-wise) than my first time through. Things such as knowing what's important to pick up and what's not, recognizing that certain items are not important to your build/play style and knowing with certainty you can freely sell them without fear that something in the game will present itself where you need such items when naturally, you won't have any at the time. Lastly, knowing what items to keep for things you want to craft based on how you want to play.

It helps a lot to keep things organized by using bags. For anyone interested, I had a separate bag for each of my characters for: Potions, Scrolls, Grenades. I always sold food items I looted or crafted but if I was to use food, I'd have a separate bag for that too. For the character with the highest strength attribute I had a few extra bags for him to carry… a bag for crafting items, a bag for runes, and a bag for important items that you want to make sure you never lose. My ranger had a separate bag for arrows. As often as I could, I'd loot with my character with high strength and with this setup of bags, most everything will land in a bag. Things that don't land in a bag are what's left for you to micro-manage. This method saved me a lot of time managing items which can become a real mess if you don't. Some people don't care about a huge screen full of objects, but it personally drives me crazy.

I also had to remind myself that this game is definitely a "set piece" game. When Swen states that every "screen" has to have something meaningful about it, he's not kidding. Though I don't generally rush through games like this, I slowed myself down when entering each new area to really take in what the "screen" might have to offer and squeezed out every drop of adventure it could offer. Also, I slowed down and read everything much more carefully this time, which obviously helped me follow the story better, which helped a lot when you get to Arx where new story layers are introduced on top of the prior ones and if you haven't been following things too closely, you could get confused and lose interest in the story, which is a good one imo.

Improvements I'd suggest for D:OS3 if they make one.

UI - I've always appreciated that Larian made a proper PC UI for the D:OS games. With the definitive edition I was hoping to take advantage of inventory "multi-select" which never materialized during my play through on the PC. Multi-Select on PC, should it arrive, will be THE reason why I'll go ahead and play the game again. Without that though, I won't replay it.

QUESTS - I was surprised that there are still a number of buggy quests in the definitive edition. None of these buggy quests break the game, but it's unfortunate, because my modas operandi was to slow down and drink in all the content. But these buggy quests I was not able to fully experience. There were only a handful, maybe 3 or 4, that I noticed in my play through.

CRAFTING - During my first play through of D:OS2 I concluded that crafting was a tacked on waste of time. I was wrong. There really are a good number of extremely useful things to craft. For me and my play style, I found myself crafting lots of special arrows, scrolls, and potions. It was healing elixirs, potions of strong will, green tea, and teleportation scrolls that got me through the final fight (well, a lot of resurrection scrolls too, but that goes without saying)… without those I wouldn't have made it as I think my party wasn't built as good as I could build it now and they were always a bit squishy throughout the game. My criticism of crafting this time around is that as it so happens, the things I wanted to craft the most had components that were way too rare. For example, right around the time I was halfway through nameless isle I started keeping track of water and air essences because it just seemed like I constantly needed them for things I wanted to make. From around the halfway point on nameless isle I found/bought exactly 4 water essences and 2 air essences and I always cleaned out every "screen" of scattered items, chests, boxes, and of course I pick pocketed just about everyone. Components that I wanted for my particular build and play style were just way too rare. Obnoxiously rare, to the point that it really robbed me of some enjoyment because I had to play a little differently from how I wanted to. Maybe it was just bad luck, but that bad luck was very persistent, and it wasn't just low drop rates of air/water essences, there were a few other too.

"Seeability" - I don't know about the rest of you, but I had a heck of a time seeing my NPCs and enemies with all the surface effects, especially necro fire. As a result I had so many mis-clicks that caused me a huge amounts of frustration. Even when toggling on the highlight to outline characters on screen I still struggled throughout the game. I found myself doing things to avoid and delay surface effects as much as I could. A real shame when the combat design has surface effects baked into it.

Source - I don't like how source points worked. Most fights went something like this: I walk around making sure to steal source from ghosts or make a trip to the nearest source vending machine so that I'm prepared when a fight shows up. Inevitably, a fight comes up and the first thing enemies do before you can widdle down their physical and/or magical armor, is steal your source. If they don't steal your source and you manage to use a spell/skill that needs source, too many of the spells/skills that use source are just terrible (not all, a few are pretty good). Yes, you can vampire back source from enemies, but I found that wasting AP doing that wasn't worth it (at least for me and my current combat know-how which is far from expert). All in all, I really felt that the source point design was too limiting and many times the results were anti-climactic to put it nicely.
I'd rather the whole design be replaced by a "once per encounter," longer cool-downs, or something of that nature. It also doesn't make any sense that you can cast spirit vision freely without using a source points, not that I'd complain about that…

Spirit Vision & Pet Pal - I'll just keep it short and to the point, these two things should just be available to the character you create. Having to constantly click Spirit Vision (along with it's way too long animation) becomes a repetitive drag. Also, with the definitive edition I wasn't able to talk to the new character (the squirrel riding "hero") until arx, when I finally picked up pet pal on my main character, which was kind of weird since that character is featured as part of the definitive edition. Even if you pick up a character with pet pal, only your main character (the one you create) can talk to this character.

There are some other niggles I could point out, but I think the above are probably the most important criticisms I have for an otherwise fantastic RPG.
If I'm right but there is no wife around to acknowledge it, am I still right?
Last edited by TheMadGamer; October 6th, 2018 at 21:17.
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October 7th, 2018, 00:01
This. I ran into something like 6 or 7 broken quests around driftwood. It was super annoying. I stopped just before sailing to nameless isle because I assume the new area will be far worse since it was heavily reworked. I intend to finish but wanted to wait for the next major patch in hope it fixes some of these quests. I found dos more fun mechanic wise but dos-2 story and writing is much better. I think the problem is they spent so much effort trying to balance dos-2 they reduced the fun factor and in the end it sitll doesn't feel that balanced.
As a data point I play both on tactical all play through. I will say that combat wise on tactical it has been much easier in the definitive version than the previous - so I think they toned things down quite a bit which is kind of sad. There were only 3 or 4 fights that were really difficult to begin with so i was hoping they would improve something in that area.

As for see-ability - there is a key you can use to high-light them during combat (it is a toggle - i think it is tilda but not sure because i did a bit of remapping).

Originally Posted by TheMadGamer View Post

QUESTS - I was surprised that there are still a number of buggy quests in the definitive edition. None of these buggy quests break the game, but it's unfortunate, because my modas operandi was to slow down and drink in all the content. But these buggy quests I was not able to fully experience. There were only a handful, maybe 3 or 4, that I noticed in my play through.

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