Why downgrade skill/aura effects?

First, I would like to start off by saying that I am a huge fan of Path of Exile. I began playing while the game was in open beta and I've been hooked ever since. With that said I'd also like to add that although I may not agree with every decision that GGG makes I do believe that these decisions are mostly in the games best interest.

Now, I understand that the art style may not be the most profound part of this game but in my opinion it certainly fits the overall theme. Personally, I enjoy the dark rustic feel but I simply do not see any good reason for downgrading the look of auras and other skill effects and yes, I do believe that it was a huge downgrade. Auras used to give off a vibrant and powerful feel, now I can hardly even tell when I turn them on. What is the reasoning behind this? From my understanding it was because they somehow were too intrusive and now they're supposed to be easier to spot? Well, I think it's quite the opposite. Can anyone explain the actual reasoning behind these changes?
Last edited by Anexx on Nov 16, 2013, 8:58:53 PM
People have toasters for PCs.
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The patch nodes said it was to improve performance, IIRC. PoE's visual effects are crazy graphics hogs, and I guess having a few of them on screen constantly was smashing people's performance. While I wasn't having problems before the change, it definitely did improve my FPS significantly.
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My PC isn't a toaster, thanks, but it isn't some super high end gaming computer either. Playing in a group of people with +5 auras, and tons of high particle spell and ability drowned my FPS terriblely. Even now with less intense aura art, I don't play in groups. Too FPS intensive, but at least I can play solo with a decent 30-40 FPS. Even now I'm waiting for more performance options in the future. This PC can play every other game without me dropping a single FPS, but this game when playing in a group... pure hell. I'm very glad for the change.
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Last edited by Marxis on Nov 16, 2013, 9:06:00 PM
They should make it an option though... not a global change. Since it only affects a portion of the players, we should get the choice as to what we see.
People have toasters for PCs.

That would be me. Well, it's not that bad, but it is bad enough to make me stay out of groups.
Lets be honest, they did it so they could sell more microtransactions lol

Weve already seen them do it with auras, im sure orbs are next
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Completed 12 ChallengesShagsbeard wrote:
They should make it an option though... not a global change. Since it only affects a portion of the players, we should get the choice as to what we see.

I agree with this, why not add a lower skill effects option in the graphics options like most other games do instead of sacrificing the visual appeal of some skills. I would really hate to say this, but I feel like there's more of a hidden agenda here to get people to purchase new skill effects. I mean a new Aura Force Field skin can now be purchased... I'm sure that's going to boost peoples frames. I understand that this is a free to play business model and as I said before I think GGG has done a wonderful job, but I seriously see no good reasoning behind this decision.
Last edited by Anexx on Nov 16, 2013, 9:22:19 PM
The reason as we have said a few times is:

1: in partys with minions there was insaino lag. Like they were just built sooooo bad.

2: Visual clutter. Even warcraft 3 never got to the point where a hero would be stacking 3 of those oversized auras. Thats even including arena maps. In poe however we had the same size if not bigger auras but stacking 3-5 on average. It was a mess and really did not fit the rest of the game. The current ones I will upgrade if we ever lock the auras to 1-2 (unless you get certain passives that increase the count you can have). However poes designers dont seem interested in this. People are still running 3 auras even now. Thats not even on a character built around having all the auras : P

So yeah. We are trying to clean up combat a bit. Huge effects cause huge lag when spammed 100 times a second all over your screen. You also cant see for shit.Other games sadly don't do this so they dont get to know our pain. Its annoying when we get compared to titan quest and d3 effect optimisation wise when they only have around 30 skill effects at max on a screen at a time. As we go from 20-30 solo to 200-300+ party endgame. Floating damage numbers are not effects.

Also lights. Holy cow lights are insane. Im going through and removing them off skills I find. I was always told "nah their fine leave them" but they are not fine!. On my 7980 fireball if shot 5 times on top of each other would drop my fps from 100+ to 20-30 for a second. Now think of that when its spammed all over your screen. Its nuts. Discharge does the same thing. when you let off all 3 discharges at the same time they each have a light. A really large light. This drops your fps for like 0.3 seconds but it feels like more because its such a huge frame drop. So yeah this is an over time fix. Arctic breath and Ice Arrow are now usable ever since I removed their lights : P

Anyway in conclusion if PoE gets to the point where players use 1 aura each. Or none aura each unless they want to be a cool support guy I dont see auras changing look until then. The reason those other ones are slightly larger is because I was told they would most likely not all be used together. Also with the aura nerf people are using slightly less auras so I made the auras slightly larger to fit that : P.
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Russell wrote:
The reason as we have said a few times is:


OK, this makes a lot more sense now. Now I can stop wondering why these graphical changes were made and if they are coming back.

Thanks for taking the time to write up such a detailed explanation. This is just another example of why I support GGG and Path of Exile. Your team cares about the game they are making and the people that are playing it.

Thanks again.
PoE Origins - Piety's story http://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/2081910

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