I've been using Mark of Flame a lot. LOVE it. But I'm only level 10 so far.
Mark of flame takes too long, you need to tag each enemy then wind-up to detonate. You're better off using that time to wind-up a lightning storm, which will one-shot most enemies. Heck, you could probably cast two lightning storms in that time.
As far as earlier levels go, I played finesse from level 10 through 25 or so, so I don't know how sorcery matches up before you get meteor or lightning storm. Probably mediocre.
Alright, I'll give lightning storm a try then.
I've yet to respect at all. I guess I've not run across a fateweaver to do it yet.
Ohhhh, I've kinda not done the main quest yet past the point of finding that dead guy in his hut, I should get on that huh?
This is very disappointing to read after my experiences with PS3 Skyrim, and I was thinking of getting Reckoning next week.
So, in my situation, what's the better platform for this game? Reckoning for my PS3 or for my 3 year old gaming laptop with 4GB RAM and Nvidia 9600M GT 512MB?
Reckoning looks great on my PS3. *shrug*
That said, I played the demo on the PS3 and it looked fine. I guess if you're a pixel-hunting graphics whore, the PS3 version is a non-starter. But for us reg'lar folks, it looks perfectly fine.
Supposedly investing in crafting/blacksmithing/gemming is even more overpowered, where you can create items dramatically better than the best possible drops, but I'm already one-shotting entire rooms so I don't see any need to do it.
It's not so much that crafting is 100% overpowered. The best uniques will be better than what one can craft.
The advantage that crafting gives is that you don't need to wait until the random drop system decides to give you an item without "wasted" stats point.
I heard otherwise, that blacksmithing is just ridiculously overpowered. You can do things like put +20% fire damage on every item.
I am very close to the end, though, and will probably finish tonight.
Finished it last night at about 33 hours. I played mostly finesse/might with a heavy focus on bows. It was pretty easy, I think I died maybe three or four times, mostly in the House of Ballads which seemed tailor made to kick my character's ass.
I liked the story but not the writing. The stuff they did with fate and predestination was interesting and new (at least in video games). They even managed some really good moments along the way. There was a point where a "hero" stopped me and said something like, "you mean I'm not guaranteed to win this time? I'm out of here. You have fun fighting the boss."
Some of the villains came off as a bit sympathetic like , "I'm just tired of getting killed over and over. Let's do it different this time." I was actually hoping I could get some of them to swap sides or something, but it never happened. Occasionally I just wanted to kill the heroes when they started whining, "you're doing it wrong! You're supposed to kidnap the girl and then I kill you. Why won't you play right?"
That stuff was great. It was just the dialog that killed things and the fact that the game has hundreds of characters. You never really get to know any of them very well. Even naked elf chick didn't seem to have much personality beyond being mysterious and naked. She did have a long speech at the end but it was drowned out by the sound of me killing the zillion enemies they throw at you whenever she started talking. Maybe they explained stuff then. I don't know.
Anyway, the combat was a lot of fun and it scratched the Diablo "kill stuff and take their shit" itch pretty well.
3 very good points about Amalur Raised on Podcasts this week...crossposting this to the podcast thread as well.
1. On JTS, Bill Abner made a brilliant observation on why the game is so easy. Many people have noted that in KoA:R, it is far too easy to "outlevel" the area you're in and all too possible to end up doing quests that have you fighting greyed-out monsters. This event seems to have baffled the folks at 38 Studios and Big Huge, with Schilling himself mentioning that they never expected people to do every side-quest in each area.
What Abner noted was that this is entirely reflective of the MMO-mindset of 38 Games here. In an MMO, a player does content until the monsters and quests in an area start to turn green and grey (meaning: they get too easy and offer too little XP reward) and then the player moves on. Bill points out that this seems to be the way KoA:R was playtested and balanced, with the folks at Big Huge and 38 expecting that the overwhelming majority of players would play the game this way.
The problem, obviously, is that folks who play single-player CRPGs don't play that way at all. People who play single player games tend to be completionists and thorough and that tendency seems to have taken the developer here aback.
I thought that was an outstanding point, well-expressed.
2. Then from Gamers With Jobs this week, we get a two-fer of good observations. Both are from....gosh, I can't tell the Seans/Shawns apart there. Both are from whichever of the two didn't like Amalur much.
The first observation he made is easy, but spot on: the folks who are really liking the game are liking the stat-fiddling, gear looting, skill buildout optimizing part of the game. Again, sounds like the game was geared at MMO-players who tend to play that way and not towards folks who are looking for narrative and story beats in their rpgs.
3. The second--and best--observation from Sean/Shawn had to do with the world of Amalur, one that I and so many other players have found to be dull and completely uninteresting "fantasy name generator crap". I've gone on record here as placing the blame for this on Mr. Salvatore, but SeanShawn raises a much better point.
He notes that Salvatore created the world and history--one person on the podcast calls it the "bible" of the world--but that all the quests and narratives in the game itself were written by the developers at Big Huge, and notes that there clearly was a disconnect between the vision of the world and expressing it in the game through interesting quests and story beats.
In other words, think of Skyrim, a game that actually hits narrative pieces so much better than Amalur. The folks who built the Skyrim world are the same ones who designed the quests and figured out how to dole out the story bits; they're intimately familiar with their setting and characters and world and it shows in the best quest lines in that game. In a game like Witcher 2, the developers are so immersed in and familiar with their game world that they just destroy everyone else's CRPG by taking the narrative possibilities of the genre to new heights.
In Amalur, there seems to be a huge disconnect between the world designer and the people designing the quests and narratives. The quests and story pieces in the game itself feel like they were put together by guys reading off design documents and timeline/outlines, by guys who never got themselves immersed in their own game world...and it ends up showing in the blandness that leaves a gamer looking for story and character depth wanting.
Honestly though that stuff could have been written an awful lot better, I wanted to side with the Queen from the House of Ballads that whole story line up until the point where I got up to her and she was all insults up until the point where I got through her "traps" and then she got all gushy gushy over me being the one to rule with her. Oh fuck you writers, fuck you.
Wait, what about the brawler combat?2. The first observation he made is easy, but spot on: the folks who are really liking the game are liking the stat-fiddling, gear looting, skill buildout optimizing part of the game.
Ugh - Dear lord, can't you guys keep endgame stories to yourselves, or put them in spoiler tags or something?
Did someone actually spoil something? I must have missed it.
Anyway, I finished the game last night and overall feel like I got my money's worth. Amalur is a solid game if you're a fan of the genre. If not, it won't convert you. It gets seriously repetitive after the first 10 hours or so. Expect to walk into a clearing to be ambushed by boggarts and sprites at the very endgame, just like the beginning. It doesn't change at all.