Negative Feedback

My kingdom was just destroyed. I’d made it through a significant portion of the game (started BS with Pitax) and was never aware that I had to go find bandit camps etc. in Pitax. So, weeks/months went by of me continually failing these missions, and by the time I finally did figure it out, and killed everyone, I went back to my capital and lost shortly after, still with 10-20% chances to win some of the opportunities or problems.
This game had a lot of positives, but SO many negatives which outweighed it. So many times I was told to go somewhere and I had to lookup on the internet where it was, or what to do. A lot of times I felt like I was playing with a junior DM who wanted our party to win his way, or no way at all, and if we couldn’t figure it out, too bad, so sad. How much time/effort would it have taken to put a few extra explanations for things, or light up map spots so you know where you’re supposed to go, or make it clearer what you’re supposed to be doing?
I supported this game on Kickstarter and now I’m incredibly regretful that I did. Not only do I feel like I wasted my money supporting it, I feel like I’ve wasted my time too.
Two thumbs down. Way to ruin my experience. I’ll never support another Owlcat game again, and I’ll make sure nobody I know does either.

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Unfortunately there’s a button on the top of the map that should default to on but instead defaults to off that would have prevented a lot of those issues.

Id encourage you to try the game again with that on and trying out some of the new ideas you came up with while playing the first time through.

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Can u give us some examples, which missions were not quite clear or locations u coudnt find? I finished the game and never had these big problems.

10-20 % sounds like a big gap between the DC of said quests and Skill level of your court. Thats strange because late on in chapter 4 you shoud have finished a lot of project in your kingdom, some of them giving you boni on the next quests and if u chose the right people for your court, where they have the highest Attribute score required for this position, then its still possible you fail the quest but not with these low chances.

If you lost the game, that means your kingdom went through all the stages of stability (From Stable to Crumbeled) so it takes some time to reach the game over state. If u get one level in Stability and rank up your Warden or finish certain quests you can improve Stability. So i woud recommend load a previous save befour you go to pitax for like- how u told us- weeks/months and improve your warden.

Last but not least: Forum notification tells us this is your first post, so relating to that info i can only tell that you maybe never asked someone to help you, who has some deeper knowledge of kingdom management. So instead of throwing this game away i ask you to give it another chance and get some advise from the community. We are eager to help you. BIG “IF” after that you still dont want to play it , then so be it.

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I haven’t verified whether that button exists, but I’ll take your word for it. Yet another thing that should have been fixed long ago, or just coded right from the beginning.

Like my post suggests, I had no idea that I was supposed to head to Pitax and wipe out the bandits, the bards, the mages, etc. I was only supposed to wipe out “those” groups, but not the assassins or whatever else was plaguing my kingdom from Pitax. I actually spent quite a lot of time searching for other groups on the map in Pitax because it was so unclear. When I had fully explored the map, I finally went and looked in the journal and found that I had all the green checks, yet the assasins, the fog, the other things still tore me apart. This was a shift from the gameplay up to that point. I was also laboring at that point to figure out where my throne was. I had to look up that you just wander around until you find it (I actually thought it was another Pitax trick, to make me look bad, so I was rather annoyed.)
Basically any time I was sent back to a location that I hadn’t been to in forever, I had to search the map, and finally get frustrated enough to look it up. When I did this, I found hundreds of people with the same problems.
With regard to the 10-20%, I was having reasonable success and then Pitax started and I no longer was. The other issue is this - I firmly believe that more characters/people should have been included to help you. If you’re back in the kingdom once a month as the “tip” suggests, that’s not enough. You need to go back many times a month, or you’ll end up with 4 old missions and 4 new missions and no way to effectively get them all done. This happened MANY MANY times to me, so I started going back more or managing from my lands. It was also unclear that leveling up say “stability” gave that advisor better stats. I didn’t realize that until later on in the game…and by then it was too late. You’re probably referring to the region missions, I never got the chance to upgrade but maybe one of those before Pitax just drained me. Also, the “tips” tell you that you should pick people as advisors who you agree with, but a lot of times those are not the people with the best scores. Later on in the game, I said “screw it” and just switched to people with the best scores.
Maybe I’m stubborn/old school, but I don’t believe that I should have to go “searching for answers”, or searching for someone who’s good at kingdom management to be able to enjoy a game. Yet, I had to do that countless times, I just didn’t do my searching here. Example? It’s incredibly unclear how your advisors are unlocked. I had to do a search “Why won’t my espionage advisor unlock?” because I kept missing missions with no advisor.
Going from Stable to Crumbled happens quite quickly if you keep missing the missions that Pitax is blasting you with. It was a sudden thing too, it wasn’t gradual. All of a sudden, I have 8 missions to do, and that means I can’t upgrade the people I need to. I had even chose not to tax my people to get the unrest bump, but that made little difference in the end.
Also, I had a real problem with lack of BP. I was constantly having to buy BP, and never ever had enough BP to start say, the 1500bp trading mission, and found it really hard to upgrade cities/towns with any regularity. My friend told me of a save game editor where you can give yourself whatever BP you need, I wish I’d known about that earlier.
Lastly, I’m not a fan of going back so far that I can now resurrect the game. I’d accomplished a lot, so that’s tedious and no longer an enjoyable experience.

I rarely had the problem finding where to go or what to do, I would even prefer not to have those marks on the places related to quests so that I can search a bit on my own. The one or two times I couldn’t find a place, it was because it was too early and I had to do something else before.

Perhaps the problem is coming from many games doing all the thinking for the player, giving big pointers on the map, on the compass, putting visual clues on the next NPC to talk to. Players have lost the habit of thinking by themselves, they want it to be easy thinking and mostly combat.

Pathfinder is one of those rare gems, the type of game that doesn’t insult the players by holding their hand all the time, but instead rewards them for exploring, listening to NPCs and paying attention to the clues, solving puzzles, and I hope it will still be the case for WotR. All the information is given through the excellent narrative, and summarized in the journal. There’s also an in-game guide for the game, including the kingdom management, but I have to admit it’s not enough and that I had to look up information elsewhere. There are enough good guides out there so it’s not really an issue.

There is an option to avoid the destruction of the kingdom, that was an obvious sign you had to monitor the situation (and indeed, its destruction doesn’t come without many early warnings). It was also said very clearly in the kickstarter.

It’s probably possible to use the last saved game, and a mod like Bag of Tricks to save the situation, but it looks like you gave up already :roll_eyes:

@redglyph
So, for example, when your throne went missing, you knew right where to find the guard captain? Considering when you do find him, he’s labeled by his name, and not “guard captain.” In what must have been the 100th+ time I was searching online, this was yet another thing I had to “find” after spending 20 minutes looking around the kingdom. When I did find him, I then remembered that I’d talked to him earlier after the attack and it was clear.
Though I respect your opinion, before playing I might have suggested that you are probably in the minority. Given all the frustrated posts I found from people online, and what I know now, I’m 100% sure that you’re in the minority.
I don’t need my hand held, but I do need at least a clue or an option. I enjoyed a lot of the game’s puzzles and Season of Bloom was one of my favorites. The difference being, if you can’t figure out a puzzle, you step back and look logically at it…and your game doesn’t end abruptly (I got no early warnings on the kingdom, I just knew that things were going badly when I kept failing missions, then it just ended). All this game needed was a some polish, and I wouldn’t have had much bad to say. When you work a full 10-12 hours a day and decide to sit down for a few hours to play, maybe you’re not at 100% and don’t catch a subtle hint, or miss some text that flows into everything else. If your kingdom starts to tank, is it too much for one of your advisors to come to you and make some suggestions? Are they good advisors if they say nothing and let your kingdom fail? In the tabletop gaming world of D&D, should your DM let you labor about for hours, unaware of what to do and then ultimately allow you to fail, or should he/she give hints/options. I would say the latter, and the hundreds of tabletop adventures I’ve played were enjoyable because of that.
To me, what it comes down to is just lazy developing and bad testing.

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Perception helps a lot with finding things on the map. A lot of us were very happy to find a game where skills finally matter, but of course the flip side of that is people who neglect them struggling. There’s always a project you can do to find the throne anyway, but pretty sure that one’s just a joke quest in any case.

It’s not the kind of game you’re going to get everything perfect the first playthrough, which is again something that appeals to people who enjoy applying things they learned the hard way the first time through to improving the second.

I’m on too many playthroughs now and can say the more time you spend ranking up (and this less time on the map) the easier everything gets. You should never have success chances under 50%, let alone 10-20%.

The opinions I’ve read, the multiple reviews (in-depth, not a review after 2 hours of play), the scores at any place, all show that people more than enjoyed the game. So no, I’m certainly not in the minority, objectively.

You were only looking for solutions, so it’s most than probable that you mainly read posts of people stuck at some point and unhappy about it, on sites like reddit, Steam or the like, known for that sort of feedback. People who are enjoying the game rarely spend time posting about it, except in reviews or to score the game. If you’re looking in these forums a little bit, or reading reviews and discussions on other sites, you’ll find a different perspective :slight_smile:

The learning curve is steeper in that game genre, that’s for granted. Once you pass this point, it should be fine. Sometimes I miss something, and I have to spend time searching, or if I don’t feel like it, I ask or I’m looking for a guide. But it also happens to me in other games like D:OS2, NWN, PoE, or other RPGs. There’s a lot of information and it’s not always easy to keep track of everything (especially if, like me, you can’t play a lot of hours per week). Still, it’s meant like that, the game wants you to feel a bit lost and look around, now and then.

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I Think thats the main point here and i agree with redglyph, while i also start to understand tcpip00 better.
Mainly your frustration is based on the fact, that PF:K doesnt tell u EVERYTHING and its not about “Hand-Holding”, its about important details like raising stability, which are not explained to the fullest and the last chance the game gives players, when they go fully sidetracked and are close to losing. Like this “extra polishing”, which make games comfortable to play.

So in my Opinion the game requires a little more time and dedication to try it again and again til you have a grasp about this little things u need to overcome the challenges. So if youre the type of player, who just want to sit down after a long day and enjoy some peaceful time, then maybe Kingmaker isnt your style. Kingdom Management is a complex system afterall.

Well if you are sure the game isnt polished enough or feels to frustrating for your taste, then have a nice day. The only other option i see is trying some mods, which make the game easier to play, like reducing time for training your advisors or managing your kingdom outside your borders.

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Yes, he has a point for sure. It’s true that the purpose of a game is to have fun, and even if there are different types of fun, there’s no reason the game shouldn’t try a little harder too (except lack of time and resource to do it).

Perhaps there are ways to better guide players without holding their hand too much, or at least to avoid they get completely lost and give second chances. If they don’t catch the thread on the first time in a quest, because it was drowned in a long story text, or because the player made a long pause or side-quests and lost track, there could be a few other hints that the player should stumble upon after looking a little bit, to point back in the right direction.

So I would certainly not put a cross on the map to tell which is the next NPC to talk to, but I would, for example, have one of the NPC involved in the quest add new dialog elements saying he has thought about it a little, and why not check in that direction, and so on. Or hidden notes for redundancy. Or a very smart companion could give his/her opinion and clues on where to continue (at the expense of a lower XP gain for the players, so they know that opening that line of conversation will cost them a little bit).

At least, if players are sometimes lost and have to get help somehow, that would allow them to stay in the game instead of using Google. And it could be turned off for hardcore players. I believe that wouldn’t cost much, and it’s an elegant way to design a game. It may even win more players to the game style instead of discouraging them.

As for the mechanics, I certainly wouldn’t mind if there was a complete manual of the kingdom management. Questions will pop up, such as: why don’t I have all the advisors, where are those crysis points coming from, is that project going to spend 15 days at once as soon as I start it or not? There are also some unfortunate choices that can only confuse players, like selecting between Octavia and Valerie for the regency … which requires a high CHA to be successful.

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Octavia is in fact a fine Regent, which frees up Val for Diplomat, Linzi for Curator, and the Storyteller for Magister. She has 14 base CHR and there are several ways to get +4 CHR is ch 2.

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It’s possible to make-do, and others are naturally suited to the job, for ex. the General candidates. I have another arrangement, I guess everyone tailors that according to their habits with the companions. But yes, it also uses a piece of equipment to boost the charisma.

By the way, I’m wondering if they only have to carry that when starting a project, to get enough chance of success, or on its completion, or even all the time… They could roll the dice already when the player starts the project, which would allow to swap the equipment easily. I happened to forget what Octavia was wearing once, during several combats, and realized she still had a lot of charisma but average intelligence :wink: Since then she moved to Magister and Valerie is Regent!

It’s a nice thought from Owlcat, however, linking the Kingdom management to the abilities.

All,

I’ve listened to what you’ve all said, and had a few days to kind of step back from how frustrated I was, and I’ve decided to start a new game, a two-handed Vivi. So far, I’m playing a little sloppy (real-time battle vs. turn based) so I don’t get bogged down in (boring/predictable) battles. I read further articles online where people said “This is my 5th playthrough and I love it”, I don’t know how these people do it. It’s somewhat of a chore for me to fight the same battles, just the 2nd time.

Thanks everyone for your opinions.

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It’s fun to try out new classes, not just on your main but also each companion, and learn how to play them effectively together. There are also a lot of different options that open up in the plot of each chapter and kingdom management depending on your alignment, but main thing is learning how to get better each playthrough.

I hope you find it less frustrating, and also that Owlcat Games reads this discussion. Despite my first replies, I agree that you have very valid remarks they could take into account for a 2nd game! :slight_smile:

First of all i appreciate you didnt just blame the whole world instead you made some valuable remarks on the game and some of them I have to accept. Nowadays it seems the amount of people who are able to make constructive positive feedback with examples is going down, so here take a cookie :smiley:

Second I’m happy you made it through your frustration and start a second try. Its one thing to throw away 100 hours playtime and play the same story/battles again, but to hear the community out and based on that looking inside and recognize there is too much frustration here so you take a breath and start over, is on another level of character strenght and self-awareness; GREAT !

Third I can only repeat myselfe: Pathfinder in combination with Kingdom Managment is the embodiment of “easy to learn, hard to master”. Most of battles and quests can be done easly with almost every character and set up, but for the real challenges you have to know the rulebook and combat system ( for Kingdom Managment the Gameplay and what affects your stats). So thats the thing why I like this game so much (0ver 400 hours playtime). First Playthrough was terrible. I did a lot of mistakes, last dungeon was almost impossible for me, missed alot of quests and so on. Kingdom was close to be destroeyed
Second Playthrough (I’m right now): new optimized classes, now some good magic items, know where and how to finish quests, know the rulebook and managment better. Now its a piece of cake for me even on hard difficulties. fewer Mistakes, easy Battles etc.

So take your time if u want. It can be quite rewarding. If after the second playthrough you still feel the same, I can only hope you stick to your communication abilities and endurance, Thats something helping out even outside of games.

Thx for reading