Dev Update #24 - Community Feedback & Sourcebook Update

Vanedor
Visitor
3 months ago

The dialog options that lead to significant changes in the story (beyond the scope of the current dialog and a possible combat / non-combat resolution), are a huge investment with little return, as they explained, so without more resource I'd rather not have that now, a long story is more engaging than a short novel with branches. Especially since the most interesting class levels are not the low ones. But dialog options that don't imply such branching should be nice to have, the impact is probably much smaller.

I'm not sure they have so little return. They have the potential to add a lot of replay value and make the player feels less rollercoasted. But yes, Anyhow, most dialogs should have little impact on the main story of the game and be fairly cheap to add. If only they didn't feel the need to get everything voiced...

3 months ago (edited)

Let me elaborate. Adding a dialog choice would mean additional writing, which in itself isn't too bad. Considering Solasta is fully voice acted, you'd have to add voice recording which already starts to become expensive.

I'm sad about this one. I really think that having everything fully voiced is a complete waste of ressource for a team such as your. Sure, have the key dialogs of the main quests voiced, but for the rest, it's really more interesting to have more dialogs options / choices than having everything voiced.


Agreed, I would prefer having more dialog options even if they're text-only. Honestly, the voice acting isn't a highlight of this game at all; as much as I love SOLASTA no voice acting really wouldn't take anything away from it. So, seeing that something with the potential of actually improving the game is being limited by (let's be honest) poor voice acting is rather unfortunate.

As a disgruntled PC once said over a mug of terrible beer, this is Donkey Piss. :P


To say that voice-acting is poor and that removing it wouldn't take anything away is really harsh, and besides, this is not true. They probably couldn't afford well-known actors with poshy accents, but the voices are quite good, what they say is clear and the intonations are correct and natural. That's what I'd expect to hear in the real life, where you rarely have the drama tones of AAA games. T.A. has already realized a great achievement with a small team, it's the first and only computer game to date with the latest D&D 5E ruleset, and it also has several innovative features. They have shown they knew what they were doing, and were passionate about it. IMHO they don't deserve such bashing, you have to realize they have maintained a good balance of what they could afford to put in, and what would have cost too much resources to develop.


I'm fine with the reality that they couldn't afford more talented voice actors, it's a small studio's first game. However, in comparison to other games/RPGs (because this game will be judged in relation to others) the voice acting is awful; I don't think there's any getting around that. It also limits the number of text/dialog/narrative options they can implement because everything needs to be voiced, so it also negatively impacts other parts of the game.

Although it's too late now, I don't think saving the voices for major narrative pieces and leaving the rest as text-only would have hurt it at all. In fact, I think the amateurish quality of the existing voice work will be an overall negative for the game at launch. Unless they're making something incredibly important or innovative, poor quality isn't really excusable for the final release in my opinion.

Better to be brutally honest now than later when development has been completed.

Ilxuss
Level 5
3 months ago

The disadvantage of not voicing something would be that the current party dialogue system would be awkward without voiceover. I'd say it's the price of innovation because I see some potential in this dialogue system. But I agree that it wold be better to think of some way to eliminate the need for voiceover for everything to save costs if not for anything else.

Redglyph
Level 12
3 months ago (edited)

I would personally be fine without any voice-acting at all, because I've played games like Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights. But it's not the case of everyone, and it has become the standard, so most people are expecting it. You can see the same tendancy in other game genres.

It would be risky for a first game not to have this feature, and don't forget - it was specified in the kickstarter: "fully voiced". I would certainly not come back on early promises if I were them!

But again, I believe they were not talking about adding some dialog options in general, only different game endings or big changes in the story ("impactful choices"). They even gave a very clear and convincing example, so I'm confused as to why it was badly understood by some. Perhaps it's the very illustration that people need voice-acting, because they can't be bothered to read:

Let's say you have the time to write three large story quests for the end of your campaign, each taking around 5 hours to complete for the player. When you arrive at the end of the game, if you play those 3 quests back to back, the game is linear but every player gets 15 hours of extra playtime. On the other hand, if you have a to choose between three different endings - each with their own quest - each player only gets 5 hours of gameplay.


I'm fine with the reality that they couldn't afford more talented voice actors, it's a small studio's first game. However, in comparison to other games/RPGs (because this game will be judged in relation to others) the voice acting is awful; I don't think there's any getting around that. It also limits the number of text/dialog/narrative options they can implement because everything needs to be voiced, so it also negatively impacts other parts of the game.

Although it's too late now, I don't think saving the voices for major narrative pieces and leaving the rest as text-only would have hurt it at all. In fact, I think the amateurish quality of the existing voice work will be an overall negative for the game at launch. Unless they're making something incredibly important or innovative, poor quality isn't really excusable for the final release in my opinion.

Better to be brutally honest now than later when development has been completed.

To me, there's nothing brutally honest about it, it's just not true. By other games/RPGs you mean Baldur's Gate 3 and Divinity: Original Sin 2, but as I said, people don't talk like that in everyday's life. It's nice, for sure, but not necessary and way overrated.

Anyway, futile discussion as they know what they're doing and have already stated their position on the matter. Second-guessing them, and seeing how good the game already looks, makes little sense.

3 months ago (edited)



To me, there's nothing brutally honest about it, it's just not true. By other games/RPGs you mean Baldur's Gate 3 and Divinity: Original Sin 2, but as I said, people don't talk like that in everyday's life. It's nice, for sure, but not necessary and way overrated.

Anyway, futile discussion as they know what they're doing and have already stated their position on the matter. Second-guessing them, and seeing how good the game already looks, makes little sense.

No, I don't mean two specific CRPGs. I mean every other modern video game that includes voice acting, which is a laundry list too long to type out. When a game makes voice acting a key feature (as SOLASTA does with full voice acting), the quality of that feature will be compared and judged. And here it's clearly done by amateurs, which is both understandable from a budget-perspective and awful in terms of quality.

I'll agree it's a futile discussion as the decision has been made and they can't afford anything better. But it's silly to pretend that the quality is fine because you like other parts of the game.

Blaze
Level 2
3 months ago

Do NOT start changing AC, HP, or monster abilities to placate the whiners.  You will lose your core audience, and those whiners were not going to enjoy a game like this anyway.

Sundansyr
Visitor
3 months ago

The flying snakes were a problem?  Really?

I thought they were pushovers in my (only) run through.

The crazy mage just before the final encounter was *far* more annoying with the globes of darkness and permanent disadvantage.

Also, in this play through: Archers win. Spellcasters 'okay'. Melee... yeah, sorry.
Found out early on that keeping everyone stocked with arrows/bolts and primary weapon was bow tended to make most encounters very easy.  Focus on anything that could shoot back, then pick off the melee as it tried to close.  All characters were elves, because all got racial longbow prof.

Baraz
Level 12
Steam Link Newsletter Link Kickstarter Backer Weaponsmith (Bronze)
3 months ago (edited)

The flying snakes were a problem?  Really?

I fought them (Brimstone Vipers) a few minutes ago and they do a decent amount of damage though they are easy to kill (5 HP with AC 14). 

With a bit of bad luck, things you go south fast, as there are many (7 or so).  They move fast in and out without provoking any AoO, often stay ranged after attacking.  For a moment I thought I would lose, as they were always hitting me and doing about 6-9 damage every time (hit+poison), breaking my Concentration spells, to the point I had to use a lot of heals.  Then luck turned my way, and I got a few hits (they die in pretty much one hit). 

So 4 level 2 characters can almost die with a bit of bad luck. 


Steam profile : https://steamcommunity.com/id/baraz/

Redglyph
Level 12
3 months ago

And now he'll say I'm not seeing things clearly *sighs* I'm done discussing with trolls.

Merlex
Level 1
3 months ago (edited)

40 year table top player here.as stated above please keep to the core rules as much as possible dont water down the game or dumb down the monsters.D&D players as a whole really appreciate tough encounters.my most memorable times in D&D is when the party defeats a tough encounter and sometimes only 1 party member left standing to revive the others 

Yeah, I started playing D&D since before AD&D (1e). I agree, keep it as close to the Core Rules as possible. As much as I love BG3, this is a major flaw in their system. I don't want to see that mistake repeated with Solasta. 

Merlex
Level 1
3 months ago

The flying snakes were a problem?  Really?

I thought they were pushovers in my (only) run through.

The crazy mage just before the final encounter was *far* more annoying with the globes of darkness and permanent disadvantage.

Also, in this play through: Archers win. Spellcasters 'okay'. Melee... yeah, sorry.
Found out early on that keeping everyone stocked with arrows/bolts and primary weapon was bow tended to make most encounters very easy.  Focus on anything that could shoot back, then pick off the melee as it tried to close.  All characters were elves, because all got racial longbow prof.

The first time I fought them, they wiped my party. But the second, I bunch the party into a square back to back, with 2 melee characters protecting the 2 ranged characters. My Wood Elf Ranger used Hunter's Mark, and sniped at them with a longbow. My Half Elven Lore Master Wizard hit them with Sleep, Ray of Frost, Firebolt, and Magic Missile. My Elven Arcanist Melee Mage wore splint mail, and uses 2 short swords with the shield spell readied. He also sniped with cantrips, for those out of melee range characters. My Hill Dwarf Battle Cleric switched between warhammer and shield and a crossbow. With that setup, it was easy.

3 months ago (edited)

The snakes could be annoying if your only focus was targeting with basic attacks. Once you take advantage of other spells/tactics to deal damage or increase your chance to hit, they're easy to deal with due to low HP. If anything, I think that's a good "gateway" encounter (although a bit early) for teaching players to think beyond just basic attacks.

Give them more HP, less AC and they just have more opportunities to hit you before they can actually be killed. Especially with their damage output, I don't think you want to give them even more attempts to attack a party that doesn't benefit from the same HP increase.

3 months ago

T

The first time I fought them, they wiped my party. But the second, I bunch the party into a square back to back, with 2 melee characters protecting the 2 ranged characters. My Wood Elf Ranger used Hunter's Mark, and sniped at them with a longbow. My Half Elven Lore Master Wizard hit them with Sleep, Ray of Frost, Firebolt, and Magic Missile. My Elven Arcanist Melee Mage wore splint mail, and uses 2 short swords with the shield spell readied. He also sniped with cantrips, for those out of melee range characters. My Hill Dwarf Battle Cleric switched between warhammer and shield and a crossbow. With that setup, it was easy.



How did you get your mage able to wear splint mail?

ovelteen
Level 7
3 months ago

The sell sword background gives you the medium armor proficiency. Lawgiver gives the martial weapon proficiency. 

Merlex
Level 1
3 months ago

The sell sword background gives you the medium armor proficiency. Lawgiver gives the martial weapon proficiency. 

Took the Sell Sword background. Elves have proficiency with long swords, short swords, longbows and shortbows.