About the quantity of trash mobs

I would like to discuss the number of trash mobs in the game. Do you think there are enough of them? Not enough? Too many?
To clarify, I define as “trash mobs” all the mobs in a dungeon who are not boss or mini-boss.

For me, the quantity of trash mobs is a delicate question. Trash mobs are useful. They allow the player to use more often his ability, to feel powerful again weaker enemies (not always the case, some trash mobs can be pretty powerful), and to build tension between key points of the story. But if they are too many of them in an RPG, the game became repetitive, and kill them can become a chore.

I think Kingmaker is in the “too much” area. I also think it’s unfortunate because, at the same time, a lot of bosses have a weak escort or not escort at all, and fight them with all your power became easier than managing your resources to reach them. I know managing your resource is a key point in the Pathfinder gameplay but I would prefer if it was easier against boss fight harder.

After, it’s just my opinion. Also, it seems to me that a lot of trash mobs in one of the trademarks of Pathfinder. I read some tabletop adventure packs and I was surprised by the number of trash mobs in some dungeons, although I didn’t compare between the video game and the Kingmaker tabletop campaign.
It also why I am curious about other opinions. Maybe pathfinder players love to fight swarms of weak enemies and fight the boss with only half of their power, or less.
Tell me what you think of it. :slight_smile:

My personal preference is : few trash mobs. Actually, no mobs at all. Just a few encounters that make sense, not all needing to end up in a fight. There are other ways to build tension. A few difficult fights here and there, avoidable for those who don’t want them. Some encounters can be overwhelming, others ridiculously easy. Making sense can mean several things. For instance, ordinary bandits will almost never attack a group of well-armed adventurers, unless they are several times more numerous and well armed and organized themselves, but then they are not ordinary.
Most monsters would probably avoid cities’ surroundings (too many people and guards or adventurers hired to kill them), they would rather find some place with enough food (or whatever prey they need to survive) but not to be disturbed too often. Most creatures seek survival.

On these premices, most fights could be avoidable, and experience found elsewhere, in finding ways to circumvent obstacles.

And the fun would be in the story, or stories, the choices we make, etc.

The sad thing is that it is much more difficult to do on a computer game, almost nothing can be reproduced easily to be used again and again, choices and consequences demand an exponential lot of work.

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The trash mobs become a real slog if you try to play the game fully in turnbased.

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I agree that it breaks a little the immersion when the random encounter is bandits, kobold or mites at chapter 4 or 5. You had thought that these creatures knew your character by now and that they have no chance.
After, it’s the same problem as most of the creatures fight to the dead and don’t try to run or surrender. It would be harder to implement in a video game.

After, in my opinion, focus entirely the game around stories, and choice in a Pathfinder game doesn’t fit (not I didn’t like this kind of RPG, I had a great time playing Disco Elysium). Pathfinder is also an RPG about fantasy fights in a fantasy world. That is why I think we need more fights than only the boss.

I totally agree. I quickly disable it and try to turn it in only when fights are dangerous. After sometimes I realize a fight is dangerous only after half my party is at negative HP :sweat_smile:
After, Kingmaker was developed with real-time in mind. Now, we can hope that Wrath would more integrated turn by turn fight in his level design.

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Density of trash mob: I think that’s really a setting that should go along with the difficulty level.

Personally, I prefer a few interesting combats where you have to prepare the defence and find the weak points for the attack, rather than a large amount of similar enemies to challenge how long you can stand. I hated House at the Edge of Time, for instance, maybe partly because it was at the end of a very long game (250h because I was using TB).

Sometimes, I like to clean up the occasional dungeon just for the fun of combat / training, but it’s rare.

I hope so too, but I don’t think it will be the case [that the number of enemies will be adapted to TB].

And it would be problematic to implement because the user is free to switch between TB and RTwP at any instant. So do we plan the number of encounters in function of the active mode when entering an area, and keep that even if the user switch mode? Or do we adjust the number if the user switches? Or do we prevent to switch once the enemies have been spawned? It’s tricky, but some of those options are acceptable.

I’d rather have an independent setting for that, it solves both problems.

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In a campaign about a gaping rift from the very abyss, I expect lots and lots of demonic trash mobs to wear down all-comers as they swarm about the wasted landscape.

Honestly, in this case it goes with the territory. Literally.

That said, I have not been playing the alpha/betas and have only experienced the campaign on tabletop. Soooo, not sure if that translates into a mindless and poorly translated grind in this situation.

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House at the Edge of Time is really the worst in this matter and the feeling tends to stay because it’s the last dungeon. If a wiki can be trusted, there are more than 200 mobs in this dungeon, 45% of them are ghost guards or wild hunt scouts. I ask myself sometimes if I am in the side 'too much trash mob" only because of House of the Edge of Time.

That a very good point. I think make like you said “a few interesting combats” can work with two mods. Some western RPG can work with that (I thought at Tyranny for example). But maybe I am too optimistic.

You are right, Abyss is known for the number of demons in it. After, their are different ways to implement that. I remember the final battle of Dragon Age Origin, where you one shoot the enemy’s mook so it felt epic and not annoying. In a game about the mythic path and where you will probably end level 18, I don’t think swarms of dretch can be a true menace for long. Except if they are all rogue 10. They will probably be all rogue 10. :frowning:

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What? There cannot be 200 fights on just 2.5 floors. I remember that completely differently. And I don’t remember this Area having particular many more combats than other areas. I think there are a bit many fights in this area, but nothing which you can’t solve with 0-2 times resting, depending on your group and spells

I didn’t say 200 fights, I said 200 mobs. Even in there are only 4 mobs by packs, that means “only” 25 fight, which seems already more plausible for a dungeon with 3 maps (I don’t understand why you said 2.5) which are double (don’t forget they are different mobs in the second versions of the mist) and where each room seem to have a pack. And because some packs can have 5, 6, or even 8 mobs, you have less than 25 fights. It’s still way more than other dungeons.

You maybe didn’t remember this area to have more fights but data are against that. Against, it’s the biggest dungeon of the game, with 3 maps doubled, when most others have only 2. After, you have the number of mobs that the wiki count. As I said, it’s index more than 200 mobs for this one when it’s about 100 for the Vordekai Tumb (which uses a swarm of weak enemies) or 85 for the Armag Tombe. Maybe the wiki data are wrong. The argument about the maps stays.

You can probably do it all without rest if you use consumables. Or with 20 rest if you play in unfair and don’t have cheese enough. In the end, that depends on each player. But that’s not the point of this topic. The point is to ask if it’s good for the game experience if they are so many mobs in the game.
If that doesn’t bother you, good for you. Maybe you are the true public of this game and I am not. :slight_smile:
But, please don’t make me said thing I didn’t say.

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200/4=50, not 25. So, let’s sday 35-40 fights because they are fights with more than 4 mobs.

You are right. My bad. :slight_smile:

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There should be trash mobs in my opinion. I do however think that the balance is somewhat off in regards to the difficulty.

Its not uncommon for my group of 8 (2 wolves) level 13 to run into low level monsters, like level 2 wolves, which obviously just get slaughtered or I might run into a single high level monster, but given that its alone it gets pretty much 1 shotted as well, most of the times they don’t even manage to do anything.

I tend to not really use a lot of magic, besides haste, because it’s not really worth it. A lot of spells requires the fight to be somewhat long or difficult before they are worth using and it is rarely the case.

And even in a lot of fights where there might be some nasty enemies, they resist most of them or are immune. Magic to me, besides the buffs seems really bad.
But I think it comes down to more than just trash mobs and I honestly think the biggest issue is the size of the player group.

I have 8 characters, so if the NPCs are to beat me and they are low level trash mobs, there need to be a lot of them, maybe 3 times my number, before the fight might be interesting, but fitting all those on the map would probably be a bit crazy. And since I play turn based, having to move that many enemies would be pretty boring.

Alternatively you run into some higher level enemies, but for the most part they are still fewer than you, so it tend to not be all that exciting either.

And last you run into some enemies that uses a death spells and you just die and have to reload, which is not really great either. But I guess that is the D&D rules.

To me they have sort of manage to keep combat in a sort of weird place, where its either too easy or its just some crazy enemy that can 1 shot you, if you are unlucky.

To me, the combat is by far the best between level 3-7 where you have to be careful and think a bit about what to do. I kind of feel that it have gone downhill from there, especially for the mages, rangers/wolves/rogues just kill everything it seems :smiley:

Warriors or just tanks in general seems completely useless in my opinion and haven’t used one since level 8 I think.

I probably wouldn’t blame pathfinder for that, as much as maybe the D&D rules.

But to compare I have Valerie as the only character specced as tank and she have 38 AC.

The wolves in my group have 35 and 36 AC, however they move at 50 feet, to Valerie’s 30. And deal 27-34 damage, whereas Valerie only does 11-25. But besides them being so fast, they can’t die (Or they just magically respawn whenever they are “killed”) but also their ability to trip enemies is extremely good as they can actually be used for doing CC.

So if you have 6 characters with pets like this, there is nothing to really stop you, besides those that just instant kill you, if you are unlucky. And that is not counting all the ones that you can potentially summon.

So to me at least, I think the main issue is the size of the group, each character doesn’t really feel important enough and it’s sort of makes combat a bit boring in the long run, as you are rarely under pressure. And maybe Pathfinder have to rebalance some things to work in a computer game from the table top, some classes seems extremely overpowered compared to others.

The use of pets for tanking is known for being cheesy. And it’s true that some classes or combinations of classes are way more powerful than others, like on the tabletop.
But it would be extremely hard for Owlcat to balance that and people could accuse them to denature the Pathfinder experience.
I think it’s at us to know when the quantity of optimization we employ in our game and to choose the difficulty in consequence. Me I don’t optimize a lot, because I don’t want to quadra-class some characters, so I play in challenging. If you use two pets, which are powerful, and are bored, maybe you should increase your difficulty? It won’t change the problem where you fight 2 wolfs at level 10 but maybe you will feel more challenged against 5/6 enemies packs.

I turned long ago to story mode. I just use basic attacks to stomp these ‘trash mobs’, not bothering to use any ability.

Seriously, I don’t have time for that.

Im not into the D&D rules at all, I used to play it back in the first edition, that is about it. :slight_smile:

I simply made my character with a wolf, because I like them and made her a dual wielder, again because I thought that would be kind of cool. I haven’t really tried to optimize anything and to be honest, I think half my feats etc. are probably wrong, because im not really sure what exactly they do. (I have changed my class from when I started, was a rogue knife thingy, so didn’t have pet in the beginning)

I play in turn base and started the game with the idea that I obviously needed a tank (Valerie), because it sort of make sense that the enemies doesn’t just charge my backline. But often, she would be fairly low in the initiative order, so I had to skip the turn with other characters like Amiri and my own character, if I wanted the enemies to attack the tank. But furthermore, Valerie due to her armor is so slow compared to the others, that often I would have to “skip” two turns or not really getting the most out of the other characters turn, because I had to wait for the tank.

After I got Nok-Nok, I changed my character because I thought two rogues was to much and it would be funnier with different things. Which were also around that time I got Ekun, which also have a wolf. So at this point Valerie was simply not useful, she should be lucky to even get in close combat before it was over and given that she can’t really taught anyone anyway, as far as I can see? The trip ability seem to be the closest to a tank CC ability there is in the game, besides moving your characters into positions where the NPCs prefer to attack them over the others. And again, the wolves have a lot of armor, almost as much as Valerie, does more damage and are way faster. It simply got even more pointless to have her in the group.

And as your characters level, even the rogues with their evasion, HP and still having a decent armor don’t get one shotted anyway, and you can always heal them if needed. On top of that, at least in my experience so far, its pretty common that the enemies you meet, if there is a lot are several levels lower than you, which means that they still need 16+ or so to hit your characters and given they have a lot of health its not really a huge issue if they get hit, when you know they themselves can probably kill between 1-3 enemies each round each, depending on their position.

So its not just about what seems to be most effective, but also since I play turn based, and there is a lot of fights, so constantly having to move a character around, that doesn’t do anything or skip their turn also get a bit annoying. I already do that with my cleric and for the most part my mage as well, not as much as with the others, but then suddenly you have 3 characters that doesn’t really seem to pull their weight.

I play on a adjust hard. Where the damage is 1.0, basically I have tried to make it as balanced as I could. I don’t like the enemies just getting buffed for no reason, if they shouldn’t be. I try to stick as close to what I assume the rules are.

To me, I think a lot of it could be solved, if the computer game were sort of adjust for being one, even if it would not be exactly like that in the tabletop game. Because there isn’t a DM here, that allow the slow moving tank to do their job or manipulate the behaviour of the enemies to challenge the players etc.

The other issue is, that you can summon a lot of minions, like the priest can summon 6 skeletons (if lucky each round) same with the sorcerer, Amiri can summon 2 crazy barbarians and my main character can summon a wyvern. If you are lucky with the rolls, you could potentially have 20+ characters after the first round. We are talking a small army here. But the game doesn’t really seem to be aimed at the player having this huge amount of allies.

I tried just to summon as many as possible in one round and Linzi only summoned 4 where one got killed. But there are 20 characters left vs his 3.

And that is just one round. So even if you dropped the wolves, you would still be better off with summoning groups of well placed skeletons than a tank. Again Linzi (sorcerer) can summon them 7 times and the priest 3 times with my current selection of spells.

I think the issue is a bit bigger than just calling a specific group or classes benefits for cheesing. Because there is a lot of ways it seems, that you can “ruin/cheese” combat in the game or what to say, which just make its really difficult to justify why you would want a slow moving tank.

Harrim is not normally in my group, because he is to slow as well. Its purely because I am on my way to a mission for him. Otherwise I have Tristian as he is all cleric. Whereas Harrim is mix fighter and cleric.

I love the customization and trying new things, that is great. I just wish that each character would feel more needed. My group is completely dominated by Nok-Nok, Ekun, the wolves and partly Amiri. The rest are basically just there to buff and because my main character has to. :slight_smile:

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That a very interesting point of view. Thanks for having taken the time to write all of this. :slight_smile:
So what would you do to make fights more interesting? I am not sure to understand what you want to say by “the computer game were sort of adjust for being one”.

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To me fights become interesting when the balance is just right, so to speak.

It’s only so fun when you plow through enemies in a game like this, as it is not a Diablo style game. But also its not really fun, if you just get randomly one shotted as well.

Most your characters have access to a huge amount of very interesting abilities and spells. But rarely does it seem worth the effort using them. This is from a fight, following the image above… and also one of the reasons I tend to think that magic is a bit weak.

Linzi

Given I play turn based, which might not be as obvious when its real time, you want to get the most out of your characters turn, so you notice when they do useful things and when they don’t. So basically Linzi have wasted a whole turn casting this spell which they are immune to, so you start asking whether it would be better doing something else with her? Like for instance buffing those that seem to be able to do something.

Nok

As you can see, Nok-Nok is a complete monster, he have 5 attacks with haste and he kill it in 4 hits, and that is with the reduced damage from the Golem.

This is from just one of the barbarian pets that Amiri can summon, which is not even buffed, not sure you can buff them?

Bar

And that is just two characters one shotting these, then you have the rest and again potential 20+ allies, if you want.

Even if it weren’t immune to disintegrate, it might simply have receive half damage, Linzi could have missed. And even if she should have hit it, she spend a whole turn casting it to do a very small amount of damage compared to what a summoned pet or Nok-Nok can do. So buffing these characters seems to be useful. But also one would think that maybe debuffing these enemies could potentially be useful, but what would be the point of that, if they get killed so fast anyway. So what you are left with is access to 30-40 spells or how many she have and not really seeing a use for them, simply because the fight is not going to last long enough that CC or debuffing or making clever use of your abilities are needed. Just get these hard hitting champions in there and kill them.

And to me that is a huge waste, because there are so many cool abilities/spells, that could make combat really interesting, having to CC enemies, healing your allies, dispel magic etc. But it never gets to it.

Whether that is because its a computer game following strict rules and no DM to spice up things when needed could be an explanation. So to compensate for that, the enemies would need to be more clever, stronger or out match your numbers putting pressure on the player. But normally I wouldn’t summon 20+ monsters, because it would be complete overkill and having to wait for all of them to move is boring :smiley: But doesn’t change the fact, that the limit of how much fighting power I could potential push out to defend myself is very high if need be. And if its a person that actually know what they are doing and how to get the most out of their characters, classes etc. I would imagine that it would be even more insane.

As I see it, they need to get the fights to a point where characters feel important enough, that simply skipping their turn is a very bad idea, giving the players the options to make meaningful use of all the spells they have, so its a tradeoff, if you want to buff, CC, damage, cure etc.
Where there is a balance between each class. I mean an inquisitor shouldn’t get a pet that outmatch a fighter, because you essentially get two characters for the price of one. And it’s not because my group is special, besides using two wolves, I would assume that it’s pretty standard, with a cleric/healer, a mage etc. And from what I can see, a lot of classes can summon minions or cast buffs etc. So you have to actively avoid them if you don’t want to use them.
I don’t use a lot of those other classes like kinetics or what they are called, mostly, because I don’t really understand them, having a hard enough time just figuring out the ones I have. :slight_smile:

Don’t know if that makes it more clear?

I think a lot of it or at least it would help, is the size of your group. If you have ever tried Divinity, which is not following the D&D rules, but have a lot of similarities, you really don’t feel like skipping a characters turn is a good idea, in certain cases it might be, because you want more action points or something, but you don’t skip the turn because you feel the character is not really worth using.

My two cents:

  • I have beaten the game on normal difficulty some time ago with me (sylvan sorcerer with leopard pet, spells were mostly CC (grease, stinking cloud, scirocco) buffs and a few summons and damage spells (hellfire ray)), Valerie as tank, reg for damage, Octavia as rogue/mage, Ekun (damage monster) and Harrim (healing) and it felt easy. I was playing turn based. some advice:
  • You have to start combat, then you get a surprize round and enemies skip one turn before they can act. They also have flat footed AC until they can act. Never run into enemies, only when you are ambushed or the fight comes after a dialogue you cannot do this.
  • A good way to start combat is that your tank (Valerie in this case) charges at the enemy. Most enemies attack the first thing they see. Its often a bit buggy when you try to start turn based combat with charge (the charger does not attack or she stops half way) but when it works its great (and when she does not attack its not extremely bad because her damage is not fantastic)
  • If you cannot charge, start combat by shooting with Ekun. He does a full attack and often kills 1 or 2 enemies right away.
  • For Valerie it should not be a problem to have an AC of enemy AB+20, so enemies only hit on a natural 20. You need blur/displacement to avoid this. In the best case your tank has mirror image.
  • Haste is one of the best buffs, always have several casts ready (+1 attack per round at full BAB and double movement speed, plus a +1 to AC and AB)
    You should always buff your party before hard fights, just make sure which things stack and which not. In the end you can become immune to almost everything except physical damage (you can get a DR of 10 there).
  • Grease, stinking cloud and scirocco (all hightened for my sorcerer) are your best friends to make groups of enemies helpless. Grease ( with freedom of movement ) and stinking cloud ( with communal delay poison ) do not harm your own party. Scirocco is not party friendly, but it causes damage, can make them prone and causes fatigue/exhaustion for many rounds.
    Summons can be nice, but they rarely hit and many enemies one shot them. Well, better them then us.

How can Amiri summon barbariens?
I used her only for her personal quests and Armags tomb and she became chief of her clan.
I admit I did not look if she learned new abilities.
Reg was my 2h warrior. With all his buffs he does good damage and he has better defense.

I took Nok-Nok for the fun, kept him for the damage :wink:

Honestly, is there any character in Baldur’s Gate 3 that can compare to Nok-Nok? :sweat_smile: