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This is my honest feedback - Path of Exile Designers

I'm near the "end" of ACT 4 (merci), I've tried out different characters, played alone and with friends. You can obviously ignore everything, or just take the bits you find interesting. 

This is my honest feedback.

This is my honest feedback - Path of Exile Designers

1. Uniqueness

This game has a unique feel and it is not easy to offer a self contained and well defined experience nowadays. Path of Exile is grim, compelling and harsh, in a good way. You feel... exiled.

Kudos.

 

2. Fair? Mmmm

Before you say this is a random rant: I'm a "souls" player, you should know what I mean. :) I consider the Souls saga the most intriguing, interesting and deep gaming expierence of the last ten years or even more.

 

I managed to clear Demon and the 3 souls more than 3 times each. I came to Path of Exile thanks to some similarities in terms of mindset: difficult, none tells you about the world unless you try to get something about it. Cryptic and very deep gameplay.

 

Now: Demon Souls and DS II had a HUGE flaw: they masked unfairness with difficulties in some hot spots. This is what I notice in Path of Exile. 

 

I can easily recognize a Difficult Boss/level (say Marveil for beginners or the Dried Lake) or an unfair one (Dominus or, a lot more, Malachai).

 

Come on guys/girls: Malachai is insane. I'm not a game designer, but I'm a IRL game master for roleplaying games, I sell boardgames as my job and I know many perspectives of "difficult gaming". Those things ARE NOT difficult, are just unfair. 

 

It's the dirty trick of raising difficulty without any actual counter-balancing choice. This is objective. Then, some players might get over with it... I cleared Demon Souls (my favourite of the saga, but still the most unfair and unexperienced game) four times, but I still have to admit it's unfair in some key points, so that you are not actually pushing the difficulty to "challenge" the player. You basically trick it. That's not a good thing, cause it's noticeable.

 

Put more care about this in the future.

 

3. Variety

I used to love FFX spherography. The passive skill tree + skill gems is gamegasm. Period. These are the most compelling and relevant ideas a game designers had in years. Chapeau.

Go on improving this and you'll always do great.

 

4. Classes and class "powers"

I like the fact that you can go almost everywhere with your class and I don't care about gender-locking classes... But I'd appreciate more distinctive traits, like micro-stuff a class is entitled to possess/do over others. Like, say, a class skill you can improve (or just ignore), but it would help.

 

Suggestions may be: temporary damage boost for Marauders, elemental resistance boost for witches or maybe a movement skill. Something you can look and say "ok, this is enough to try a couple of builds around it." 

 

5. Be more Social

I wrote it down in another thread, I've to repeat it, since this is probably the only flaw I really "feel" (outside the unfaireness vs difficulty topic). 

 

I see lot of potential in the social aspect of this game. Ok, the gameplay itself doesn't incourage it that much, but I'd really like more guild influence and grouping relevance.

Just add some depth to guilds, especially themed ones... It would add tons of fun, even for those who actually ignore this, especially if you put on the table guild-based achievements and boosts (not in terms of game-power obviously). 

 

You might award high leveled guilds for continuity or just create guild vs guild events ora areas. You can include light RP or even dedicated dungeons, why not? :) 

 

I feel like there's lot of room for this aspect and I'd be pleased to give even more advices if you're interested in it. 

 

Encourage player meetings, not only for "trading".

 

6. Speed up

Just let players who reached lvl70 or so in merciless to skipp at least 1 run. There's no reason to let them rush again and again into the three modes. Allow a "quest-skip" thing or I don't know what. Just let create "boosted" characters emulating a smooth "standard" run and that's it.

 

This game is alt friendly in terms of skills (since you can share the stash and try out stuff as you go), but it needs to be alt friendly in terms of investement. The result is that people will manage to play 2 more characters if they have the time to do so and that creates layers of complexity in the endgame.

 

I guess that's it. Sorry for the lenght, but I wanted to share my humble opinions and since I'm a long-time gamer (I'm 35 and games as an "archetype" are a huge part of my everyday life) I've no interest in telling you lies or just play a game I dislike. I LOVE Path of Exile and the only reason behind this post is the wish to see something more on top of this masterpiece.

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