WOLCEN - Lords of Mayhem

Hard caster is even harder imo. Right now the rage mechanic favours melee since every attack generates rage (excluding staves) and you have expend rage to generate willpower. So a hard caster needs to either use willpower potions or a staff's basic attacks to get going...or just wait, as rage naturally converts to willpower outside of combat.

What Wolcen has that PoE lost is precisely this need to be considerate with your resources. With your fuel. I argue that once that fundamental restriction on bursts of output is lost, the game is no longer qualified to be called an ARPG. You'll notice TencentGGG's attempt at reclaiming that with their recent mana flask significance boost, but it's far too little, far too late.
You're not Exiles. You're clowns! Toa thonna mondarr! Nocklith! Vohkbar! YOU'RE ALL CLOWNS! CLOWNS! CLOWNS!
"
鬼殺し wrote:
Hard caster is even harder imo. Right now the rage mechanic favours melee since every attack generates rage (excluding staves) and you have expend rage to generate willpower. So a hard caster needs to either use willpower potions or a staff's basic attacks to get going...or just wait, as rage naturally converts to willpower outside of combat.

What Wolcen has that PoE lost is precisely this need to be considerate with your resources. With your fuel. I argue that once that fundamental restriction on bursts of output is lost, the game is no longer qualified to be called an ARPG. You'll notice TencentGGG's attempt at reclaiming that with their recent mana flask significance boost, but it's far too little, far too late.

Good to know :)

About resources: It is funny that POE feels quite "right" while leveling. Later on, resource-management becomes as obsolete as it can be (except for outbursts of damage via vaal skills etc. for bosses), but while you go through the acts it feels somewhat meaningful. The pace is a little bit slower, you risk to go oom sometimes or need to manage your healing potions. Maybe just a problem for those who don't breathe and live the game. But still: POE feels more ARPG'ish in the beginning. I wonder if GGG can turn this into endgame somehow. You know, cool stuff like seeing the names and attributes of mobs you fight because you don't kill them in nano-seconds, getting upgrade-chances with every boss you kill and all that jazz. I have some hope. I don't hate the speed-meta. But maybe, just maybe, it is not the right path (ha!) to chose. Anyways. I like Wolcen atm. Hell freezes over. But i do.
I dream of an end of beta.
Last edited by ghamadvar on Sep 8, 2019, 7:34:52 PM
Funny: the next content patch (Wrath of Sarisel) is all about a new co-op 'boss raid' mode but I'm just interested in seeing how significant the promised 'reduced loading time' will be.

That and I must admit, the incoming turret skill looks seriously badass. Which might sound funny coming from Mr. Melee over here, but I'd argue a gun turret makes a lot more sense in Wolcen's magi-tech world than the supposedly savage, primitive expanse of Wraeclast.

...Which is something else we don't really discuss around here: how little sense PoE makes when you scratch the surface.

The level of disconnect between the Exile and the rest of the world around them is monumental now -- you have people literally in rags trying to survive in a small crude outpost right next to walking gods who can summon hordes of minions, become living whirlwinds and lay waste en masse effortlessly. It just doesn't make sense at all. Little wonder the endgame of PoE is essentially 'transcend this mortal realm and plunder other dimensions'. Great for power-hungry nerds who think Warhammer 40k books are the epitome of literature, problematic for anyone who falsely believed we were ever meant to give a shit about Wraeclast itself.

I barely know anything about Wolcen's world and I'm already much more interested in it than I've ever been in Wraeclast. I love the world map in the palace and the two guys talking about various locations; I'm dead-set intrigued about the fact that we *click* on those locations and nothing happens...yet. I think the transition from a 'save yourself' narrative to 'save a lot of other people as well' imperative is smooth and believable. The setup is nothing new -- 'good guy finds out other good guys aren't' is as old as rocks and dirt, but it's a wheel that doesn't need reinventing. It's also much more palatable and fertile for storytelling than 'sociopath does anything for a reward, accidentally saves what's left of the world, goes off to slaughter other worlds' inhabitants'.

For a game that so desperately wants to look intelligent and brilliant, PoE is spectacularly stupid in the world-building and story department. Even Diablo 3, with its horrible writing and Chosen One conceit, at least made some sense. I always argued that PoE didn't need a story, that the story was written by the player's actions, but if so, GGG sure went out of their way to ensure it'd be a very boring one.

And I think this stuff matters. There's a reason Wolcen, at one mere act, feels like a living world populated with actual people, drama, politics, motivations, while PoE never does. PoE never stops feeling like you're experiencing the desiccated remnants of a much more interesting world. For the first few acts I expected that as the set-up of 'Exile', but if after 10 whole acts you're still left with that feeling of hollowness, and the only option the game gives you after those ten acts is to enter and decimate abstract dreamscapes disconnected from said world, you're sort of like...well...what was the fucking point of all that?

This nihilism permeates PoE, defines it. There is no real hope in Wraeclast (or Oriath, for that matter). No joy. And as such there is no loss and no suffering either. Just facile representations of emotions. Muted engagement. And that's why it's so easy to walk away from it and into 'The Atlas of Worlds'. This is bad...bad game design.

Wolcen is, so far, a competently made ARPG with an actual point. It has a story to tell and a world that logically accommodates it. Whether or not the team deliver a story that lives up to that point remains to be seen, but at least we know there is one. We know the stakes, if only from the steadily growing despair of the player's circumstances. We know the antagonists (and we know that there are several factions thereof). We know our place in all of this, although the scope of threat and the scale of consequence continues to expand.

And the sad thing is none of this is revolutionary or amazing. It's a baseline for acceptable story writing. I sometimes wonder if this community would be different if one of the core components of PoE were a world people actually care about rather than one they can't wait to leave behind.



You're not Exiles. You're clowns! Toa thonna mondarr! Nocklith! Vohkbar! YOU'RE ALL CLOWNS! CLOWNS! CLOWNS!
Last edited by 鬼殺し on Sep 10, 2019, 9:09:39 PM
Reduced loading time, this is what I am hoping for, more than anything, for Wolcen.
2 Handed melee has been fun and challenging in the resource management dept as you noted above.


~
"
鬼殺し wrote:
Funny: the next content patch (Wrath of Sarisel) is all about a new co-op 'boss raid' mode but I'm just interested in seeing how significant the promised 'reduced loading time' will be.

That and I must admit, the incoming turret skill looks seriously badass. Which might sound funny coming from Mr. Melee over here, but I'd argue a gun turret makes a lot more sense in Wolcen's magi-tech world than the supposedly savage, primitive expanse of Wraeclast.

...Which is something else we don't really discuss around here: how little sense PoE makes when you scratch the surface.

The level of disconnect between the Exile and the rest of the world around them is monumental now -- you have people literally in rags trying to survive in a small crude outpost right next to walking gods who can summon hordes of minions, become living whirlwinds and lay waste en masse effortlessly. It just doesn't make sense at all. Little wonder the endgame of PoE is essentially 'transcend this mortal realm and plunder other dimensions'. Great for power-hungry nerds who think Warhammer 40k books are the epitome of literature, problematic for anyone who falsely believed we were ever meant to give a shit about Wraeclast itself.

I barely know anything about Wolcen's world and I'm already much more interested in it than I've ever been in Wraeclast. I love the world map in the palace and the two guys talking about various locations; I'm dead-set intrigued about the fact that we *click* on those locations and nothing happens...yet. I think the transition from a 'save yourself' narrative to 'save a lot of other people as well' imperative is smooth and believable. The setup is nothing new -- 'good guy finds out other good guys aren't' is as old as rocks and dirt, but it's a wheel that doesn't need reinventing. It's also much more palatable and fertile for storytelling than 'sociopath does anything for a reward, accidentally saves what's left of the world, goes off to slaughter other worlds' inhabitants'.

For a game that so desperately wants to look intelligent and brilliant, PoE is spectacularly stupid in the world-building and story department. Even Diablo 3, with its horrible writing and Chosen One conceit, at least made some sense. I always argued that PoE didn't need a story, that the story was written by the player's actions, but if so, GGG sure went out of their way to ensure it'd be a very boring one.

And I think this stuff matters. There's a reason Wolcen, at one mere act, feels like a living world populated with actual people, drama, politics, motivations, while PoE never does. PoE never stops feeling like you're experiencing the desiccated remnants of a much more interesting world. For the first few acts I expected that as the set-up of 'Exile', but if after 10 whole acts you're still left with that feeling of hollowness, and the only option the game gives you after those ten acts is to enter and decimate abstract dreamscapes disconnected from said world, you're sort of like...well...what was the fucking point of all that?

This nihilism permeates PoE, defines it. There is no real hope in Wraeclast (or Oriath, for that matter). No joy. And as such there is no loss and no suffering either. Just facile representations of emotions. Muted engagement. And that's why it's so easy to walk away from it and into 'The Atlas of Worlds'. This is bad...bad game design.

Wolcen is, so far, a competently made ARPG with an actual point. It has a story to tell and a world that logically accommodates it. Whether or not the team deliver a story that lives up to that point remains to be seen, but at least we know there is one. We know the stakes, if only from the steadily growing despair of the player's circumstances. We know the antagonists (and we know that there are several factions thereof). We know our place in all of this, although the scope of threat and the scale of consequence continues to expand.

And the sad thing is none of this is revolutionary or amazing. It's a baseline for acceptable story writing. I sometimes wonder if this community would be different if one of the core components of PoE were a world people actually care about rather than one they can't wait to leave behind.



This is true.

For myself, I'd add the story for Grim Dawn into the "Worlds better than POE" as well. When you stop to read the various documents you really get a sense of a world that got fleshed out and carefully worked through. The writing takes place in the context of relationships to which we tend to be able to relate (family, loyalty, ...). I tend to read the notes I can pick up when playing Grim Dawn because they're usually interesting.

In POE you get mostly stuff clearly written to sound "epic" and/or tragic when you read it. It mostly reads as pompous and puffy, and I routinely skip it for that reason.

I'd like POE to remain a successful game and I've had a lot of fun playing it, on an overall basis. Still, in a way it's kind of disappointing that POE fails to check so many boxes in good game design, but ends up growing its player base anyways.
To be honest with players and to honor the 1980s, GGG should ...

1. Rename “Labyrinth” to “Mario's Boring Maze”
2. Replace Izaro with Bowser
3. Change lab's flavor text to “Lab gets repeated 4 times because even though it bores MANY players and turns the lore into nonsense, it saves us money.”
Last edited by EnjoyTheJourney on Sep 13, 2019, 5:50:13 PM

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