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Brave New World 2.0 - Beta Thread

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Continuing my recorded run :

Part 6

Going up to Zozo, not to much trouble tough some situation can be dangerous in Zozo, not doing a fast Dadaluma kill like I could in 1.9 but he is make so much easier with a Vanish set up.

Part 7

And Opera part, did very poorly against the rats (I hate being on timer it always stress me out ^^"), Ultros was a fun fight, Gau is kind of tricky to keep alive but he does his job.

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I recently played the 2.0 version of BNW on stream to show what my thoughts were as I played it, and since I'm done with it (didn't finish, will explain later), I thought it'd be good to reflect on and summarize my experience/impressions of the mod.  For a one line summary, I think what I'd have to say is, "It's terribly imbalanced."

I don't mean "imbalanced" as in "overpowered."  I mean there's a fundamental lack of balance.  This shows up in everything, including the game's script.  I am not a fan of filling a mod with references as I find it distracting and not entertaining, but I understand different things appeal to different people.  Similarly, I don't find vulgarity interesting or entertaining, but I get some people may.

My problem with the changes to game's script is not that the changes made to it were necessarily bad.  What bothers me is the changes usually feel out of place.  While playing, I'd feel like I was playing FFVI at some points, playing a cheesy fourth wall breaking satire in others, and playing a preteen fanfic filled with vulgarity for the sake of vulgarity in others.  Any one of these might work on its own, but the constant shift between them is jarring.

The same can be seen with the substance, rather than style, of some of the changes.  Most notably, Celes's emo sequence feels entirely out of place (though not as bad as I seem to recall in previous version of hte mod).  Celes's character in the mod seemed basically the same as in vanilla up until the FC, at which point she suddenly became very, very different.  The change seemed to last for 20 minutes and never mattered again.  On top of this, there was a random boss with cheesy Dark Side dialogue added into the FC sequence... for reasons?  Changes like this made the mod constantly feel tonally dissonant.

During my playthrough, I often referred to the mod as seeming "schizophrenic."  A better term might have been "bipolar."  Like with the dialogue, I felt like the game's difficulty had huge swings in variance.  Time and time again, I found things like enemies dealing 25 damage to one character with a single-target attack then dealing 100 damage to all four characters.  Similarly, it was not uncommon to have a character one-shotted by one attack and barely even hurt by another.

I don't want to bog this post down with numerous examples, but I do want to give an example that shows how this goes beyond single units/battles.  When I got to Zozo in 1.9, I ragequit because of the counterattacks.  2.0 made the dungeon much more pleasant, and I managed to beat it with some challenge but nothing too great.  Even Dadaluma, who people warned me about, didn't feel too difficult.  (My only true struggles in it were due to my own mistakes.)

After that, I went and fought Ultros who initially didn't seem too bad.  Then he used Acid Rain and killed one character immediately then killed another character after the first Sap tick happened.  My Ultros was immortal though due to Stamina + Auto-Regen so I still won.  I then wound up at the SC, and I almost immediately party wiped to Firestorm.  I then had to spend ~30 minutes grinding just so my party's levels would be high enough for my characters to have enough HP to survive a single round of combat.  (I was told the expected level for the SC was ~14 yet I got there at ~10.5.)

I don't want to bog this down by focusing on that issue too much, but I want to stress it was the schizophrenic nature of the difficulty of hte mod was the single largest factor for me not enjoying things.  It got to the point where 95% of the "difficulty" of the mod felt like it was either, "You got super punished by something you couldn't have known about in advance" or, "You got one-shotted by something because you didn't have enoguh HP."  And when things weren't difficult, they often felt tedious.  Countless boss battles found me finding a pattern of actions I could repeat to stay alive without risk of death then sitting there repeating them for 5, 10 or even 15 minutes.

A final example was in character power.  I don't mean that as one character being inherently stronger than another.  What I mean is the lack of level reaveraging meant I almost always felt a few characters were stronger than the rest, by a large margin.  I actively tried to swap other characters into my party to get weaker characters trained up, but I always felt I was too gimped if I didn't bring along at least two of my strongest characters.

This is a shame because the best part of the mod (for me) was the differences between the characters.  I liked that using one character instead of a different character felt far more impactful than it did in vanilla.  The raw differences you get in stats/abilities/equipment before getting espers is nice, and after you get access to ELs, things get even better.  Even characters like Gau, who have limited equipment/esper options (one esper for all of WoB is sad), still manage to have a lot of options to explore due to things like a Rage list with lots of varied options.

I like the increased variety, and I wanted to explore it more.  The problem was I felt like I couldn't.  Trying to rotate characters in and out of the party often just didn't seem like an option.  In the WoR, I always felt like if I wasn't bringing at least a couple of my strongest characters with me, I'd lose.  In the WoB, I felt like I couldn't afford to experiment as I never had the GP for the equipment for four characters, much less GP I could spend testing out other characters/builds.  (An idea was floated in the Discord server which would help this problem, increasing the sellback rate of items.  I really hope that is implemented as it would make WoB experimentation feel not-terrible.)

Tied to this, I get why level reaveraging in vanilla could cause problems (I don't think that many people LLG to min/max, but rewarding that playstyle is odd), but I don't get why it's removed from BNW.  When I recruited Umaro, he joined my party at level 26, and I immediately found use for him.  But other characters joined at 18 (Gogo and 19) which made me feel like I couldn't use them as they had too little HP to survive anything.  

I get level reaveraging rewards the player for waiting to recruit characters.  I'm not sure that's necessarily bad (as there is a real cost in not having access to them), but it would be better than having characters join in the WoR at level 18, possibly with no ELs.  Some other solution might be better.  i don't know.  I just know I constantly felt punished, heavily, for trying to switch which characters I used.  That's especially true since so many enemies have attacks that feel like HP checks, saying, "If you have X HP, I'm easy, otherwise you're screwed."  The worst part is the game creates a vicious cycle where not using characters because they'll die means they'll likely die when you use them, making it harder to get them XP to level up, meaning they'll keep dying.

Before I move on, I want to state something explicitly.  This summary has much more text discussing negatives than positives.  This should not be taken as me thinking there aren't good things about the mod.  There are.  The reason I don't discuss them in much depth is I felt like other things constantly prevented me from experiencing things which were good.  For instance, I like the new Rage system (and being able to leap anywhere) a lot more than Vanilla's, but I didn't get to delve into it as I didn't use Gau in the WoR at all because I was afraid he'd die constantly with his low level and small HP pool.

Part of why I bring this up is I didn't finish BNW.  I wanted.  I really did.  The problem is I killed all 8 dragons.  That meant I was forced to fight the new Kaiser Dragon before I could fight the last few bosses.  I couldn't beat him.  I know he has some sort of gimmick.  I was even given a couple hints about it.  I couldn't figure out how things worked though.  I figured out it had something to do with him attacking based on the elements you used (and killing you with Meteor -> Ultima if you messed up), but... yeah.  I couldn't get passed him so I had to quit.  Not only was banging my head against him trying to figure out the gimmick not enjoyable, without using savestate, you'd have to go through multiple rooms and several random encounters after every death to get back to him.  (Why is there a save point right after him rather than right before?!)

If the fight were entirely optional, I could maybe forgive the gimmicky nature of it.  It's not though.  The only way to skip it is to intentionally ignore content by not killing one of the eight dragons.  That's a strange cost to pay, and it has to be paid before the user even knows what the battle against the Kaiser dragon is like.  Had I known in advance the battle would be gimmicky and non-skippable like that, I'd have skipped one of the dragons.  I didn't though, and as a result, I couldn't finish the playthrough.

The point is the limited amount I talk about the good aspects of the mod shouldn't be taken as representative of how much/little there is good about it.  Instead, it should be taken as a reflection of how limited my ability to experience those good options seemed.

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By the way, I am sure my experience with BNW would have been different if I played through it several more times.  However, I've beaten two previous versions of the mod, and I talked to people as I did this playthrough.  I still felt horribly knowledge-gated.  There were plenty of battles which became easy once I understood how they worked that wiped my party the first time I encountered them.  I don't find that to be an enjoyable experience.  I like knowledge being rewarded, but being rewarded doesn't require changing a battle from, "Game over" to "Trivially easy."  Similarly, I don't feel it is "difficult" to have enemies one-shot a character, or even the entire party, before you get an action.  That normally happened mid-battle, like when I used a single Sonic Boom at the start of a battle on my way to the Ancient Castle, only to watch enemies do 3x AoEs in a row and wipe my party (that formation then proceeded to never be a threat again as I learned not to leave the one type of enemy alive but damaged).  Not always though.  There were many times battles would start and a character would die before I got a single action.  Sometimes I'd lose 2 or 3 before my first action of the battle.

My impression is if I played through the mod enough times to become truly knowledgeable about it, there'd be nothing in it that was remotely difficult.  I think that's unfortunate.  To me, that makes it feel like the player is not being rewarded for knowing things, but rather, is being punished for not knowing things.

Anyway, sorry for the wall of text.  It's difficult to summarize 20+ hours of thoughts from streaming succinctly.

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I Feel like the huge problem here is this, toi can't really play BNW as you would play a typical FF by that, I mean FF are quite user friendly in the sense that it's kind of easy To brute force your way through, and just grind whenever you have trouble, this is sadly the general mindset of FF. BNW encourage to try stuff around and reward player to analyse and try things out.

For instance you mention being wipe by Firestorm, while it's true it is a powerfull move at this point of thé game, it is never use on the first turn and thé mob that does it is vulnérable to all statut effects which you should try when playing bnw, meaning you could for instance summon siren and Berserk them or if you have Edgar confuse them, to avoid the attack and this is thé case for a lot of potential wipe in random.

That being I do agree for Kaiser and this gimmick being kind of hard to get right with the fact that once he appears you are force to fight him, which can be frustrating, and some bosses being easy except for one attack that can screw your day.

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1 hour ago, Nesouk said:

For instance you mention being wipe by Firestorm, while it's true it is a powerfull move at this point of thé game, it is never use on the first turn and thé mob that does it is vulnérable to all statut effects which you should try when playing bnw, meaning you could for instance summon siren and Berserk them or if you have Edgar confuse them, to avoid the attack and this is thé case for a lot of potential wipe in random

They can't Firestorm first action, but they can Firestorm before you take an action.  As for status ailments, with the right characters in your party, it's easy to shut those guys down.  It's easy not to have such a party though.  And even if you do, the design of, "Use a status ailment first action or die" is not good.  It doesn't reward you for playing differently than in vanilla.  It says play one way or lose.

For the record, it was said repeatedly in the Discord server that it wasn't intended to be like this.  There was a near universal consensus that Firestorm is too powerful/my levels were too low, and that's why I was dying.  If my characters had been level 14 like BTB said was expected for the area, I wouldn't have needed to rely solely on a first-round status ailment to survive those battles.  Given that, I'd say this wasn't an example of me playing wrong.

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For the firestorm in SC i specifically mention Siren because Celes can summon Siren and she is force for this part so you have her by default, that being said I never being hit by Firestorm before being able To act even on Pincer and ambush. But yeah Firestorm is indeed quite powerfull at this point of the game, especially if underlevel like you were.

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9 hours ago, Nesouk said:

For the firestorm in SC i specifically mention Siren because Celes can summon Siren and she is force for this part so you have her by default, that being said I never being hit by Firestorm before being able To act even on Pincer and ambush. But yeah Firestorm is indeed quite powerfull at this point of the game, especially if underlevel like you were.

Knowing to equip Siren to Celes and summon it first action would definitely help, but that's the exact sort of knowledge gate I was referring to.  It's one specific option with nothing to suggest it to you in advance (or even anything in game telling you what it does).  If you know to use it, that's great, but in a "blind" playthrough it'd be difficult to expect a player to discover.  It's not like a person can try several different things in the battle to see what works.  Dying after one action doesn't allow for that, and using Siren requires being equipped with something before the battle even begins.  I died to the battle several times while trying to find a solution, but the deaths came too quick for me to figure anything out.  And while knowing how to beat the battle may make it easy enough (assuming I don't tie before taking an action, which happened a couple times during my stream), a small amount of knowledge should not take a battle from "Game over" to "Easy win."  Or at least, that's how I feel.  If people think I'm just playing bad because I don't like insta-wiping first round of combat, so be it.  The reality is outside of seven or eight battles, I had an easy time with the mod.

As for being underleveled, I still don't know how I was.  I never ran from battles, and I picked up almost every piece of loot there was.  I did ride a Chocobo from Kohligen to Zozo (with a pit stop in Jidoor), but I don't see how that could have gotten me 3-4 extra levels.  If I was underleveled, I think the reason is the XP curve needs some work in that part of the game.  There's no way riding a chocobo for that sequence should have set me that far behind.

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Actually it does kolinghen To Zozo isn't a short trip, so of course skipping mean à lot less random battle and less XP skipping an entire section mean skipping some levels.

And this what I Said about having the wrong mind set, in a JRPG such has BNW you should try everything at your disposal and if you can't beat something, then you should try a different way and not expecting that everything will be given to you, not doing that and you end up grinding, this is something that Vanilla FFVI don't do cause it's so easy you can just brute force everything, so from what I see most of your complains is just you jumping into this mod expecting it To be played like vanilla FFVI.

 

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And while Siren is one specific option, it's certainly not the only option. Locke can dual wield Full Moons, which I hear is sufficient. Locke can use either Bolt 2 or Bolt in conjunction with Celes to take one out. Celes is guaranteed to have either Ramuh or Siren equipped, Siren effectively guaranteeing that they're shut down and Ramuh either one-shotting them or getting really close(I did a calculation assuming level 10 with absolutely no Magic boosting equipment except for a Magic Cube, and I calculate it does 861 damage, which is sufficient). Regardless, Bolt 2 as well would certainly kill one. Aside from that, Celes and Edgar potentially have access to Bserk. Edgar can use NoiseBlaster or Drill in conjunction with Locke/Celes's Bolt. Cyan likely has access to Flurry. Sabin has access to Suplex, which admittedly randomly targets, though I suspect he could get close just by punching them down, certainly with Locke/Celes's help via Bolt. Sabin and Gau potentially have access to Imp and/or Sleep. Gau likely has access to either Wind Slash, Air Blast, Fireball, x3 Special, Rock, Plasma, Sand Storm, Antlion Rage(both options are fantastic), Eye Goo Rage(both options are fantastic), Chickenlip Rage if taken on a detour around the continent, or Rain Man Rage on subsequent battles.

The point is, while any specific option may not be obvious/possible to an arbitrary player, one of them should be, either through being a fan of Noiseblaster, experimenting with Rage and enjoying Air Blast, or doing the "hold A and pray" strategy with Sabin. Given that nothing else there is super powerful, it should become evident that taking them out first is a good strategy. Does that mean they shouldn't be nerfed? No. However, is it necessary to nerf them to be able to progress? Absolutely not.

On another note, the EXP required to get from level 10 to 11 is twice that of the requirement for getting from level 11 to 12, with the aim of sort of regulating character levels to some degree. Thus, the trip from Bob->Zozo via Chocobo may do more than you(and I) initially assume. It's a tad easy to get characters "stuck" at level 10 as a result of this EXP curve, though once you get past that, the EXP requirement doesn't reach that point again until going from level 15 to 16, so getting from 11-15 is a tad easier than anticipated.

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On 4/29/2019 at 9:08 AM, zz1000zz said:

They can't Firestorm first action, but they can Firestorm before you take an action.

This is the second time I've seen you mention enemy behavior that, by design, should be impossibly fast. There is no way that the battle timer can reach 20 before your party takes an action, even during back/pincer attacks, and if this ever does happen it would be considered a bug to be looked into.

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Posted (edited)

19 hours ago, Nesouk said:

Actually it does kolinghen To Zozo isn't a short trip, so of course skipping mean à lot less random battle and less XP skipping an entire section mean skipping some levels.

And this what I Said about having the wrong mind set, in a JRPG such has BNW you should try everything at your disposal and if you can't beat something, then you should try a different way and not expecting that everything will be given to you, not doing that and you end up grinding, this is something that Vanilla FFVI don't do cause it's so easy you can just brute force everything, so from what I see most of your complains is just you jumping into this mod expecting it To be played like vanilla FFVI.

Except I beat Zozo with ease despite having ridden a chocobo like that.  I considered the possibility riding the chocobo would cause me problems with being underleveled, thinking I might have to leave Zozo to fight battles because of it.  Not only did that not happen, I had very little difficulty with Zozo.  People had warned me Dadaluma would be hard, yet I beat him on my first try without even meaning to (I planned to fight him once to see what the battle was like so I could prepare, yet I found the battle easy).  I even brought this issue up during my stream, saying if I were underleveled because of riding the chocobo, why was Zozo easy?

If the mod wanted me to be a higher level at that point, that's fine.  It did nothing to suggest that prior to that point though.  If the mod wants me to rely heavily on status ailments to deal with random encounters, that's fine too.  But again, the mod did nothing to suggest that prior to that point.  And it doesn't do anything to suggest that after that point either.  This is what I talked about in my summary, calling the mod imbalanced.  No matter how much one may think the way I played was bad, I had an easy time of the mod up until Ultros/SC.  After that, my only difficulties in the WoB were Shiva/Ifrit because of not knowing how to time Runic to catch Ice 3/Fire 3, the mine cart ride (not the boss, just the randoms) and one enemy on the Floating Continent (Behemoths, because of not knowing how to play around their Meteor).  I find it difficult to swallow the idea it was entirely because I play dumb that things were easy 95% of the time yet soul-crushingly difficult the other 5%.

If battles in BNW are supposed to be like this, where you can get a game over for failing to neutralize/kill an enemy extremely quickly, that'd be one thing.  They aren't though.  That doesn't happen in ~98% of random encounters.  The only other enemy I can think of like that was the Pterodactyls on Lete River (I can't remember if that was changed for 2.0).  I don't understand how one could reconcile, "This is normal and how the mod is designed, you're just playing wrong" with, "This doesn't happen anywhere else in the mod."

Side note, I don't know why you compare this to vanilla in terms of grinding.  The only time I grinded in the entire mod was at the SC, where you say my levels were low because I rode that chocobo.  In other words, the only time I grinded was to get back to the point I was supposed to be.  My mentality the entire playthrough, except this point where you say I was very underleveled, was to find options that'd let me overcome obstacles without having to grind.  Given that, talking about a mentality that encourages grinding confuses me.  (The fact I beat things while underleveled only seems to further suggest grinding wasn't a go-to strategy for me.)

8 hours ago, BTB said:

This is the second time I've seen you mention enemy behavior that, by design, should be impossibly fast. There is no way that the battle timer can reach 20 before your party takes an action, even during back/pincer attacks, and if this ever does happen it would be considered a bug to be looked into.

I saw someone else question this, and a person in Discord suggested something that made sense.  I checked, and they were right.  I conflated Firestorm and Fireball because I remembered dying before taking an action and I remembered dying in one attack to Firestorm. What I was actually remembering being able to kill me before taking a single action was 2x Fireball or Fireball + Acid Rain.  

Edited by zz1000zz
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7 hours ago, Cecil188 said:

And while Siren is one specific option, it's certainly not the only option. Locke can dual wield Full Moons, which I hear is sufficient. Locke can use either Bolt 2 or Bolt in conjunction with Celes to take one out. Celes is guaranteed to have either Ramuh or Siren equipped, Siren effectively guaranteeing that they're shut down and Ramuh either one-shotting them or getting really close(I did a calculation assuming level 10 with absolutely no Magic boosting equipment except for a Magic Cube, and I calculate it does 861 damage, which is sufficient). Regardless, Bolt 2 as well would certainly kill one. Aside from that, Celes and Edgar potentially have access to Bserk. Edgar can use NoiseBlaster or Drill in conjunction with Locke/Celes's Bolt. Cyan likely has access to Flurry. Sabin has access to Suplex, which admittedly randomly targets, though I suspect he could get close just by punching them down, certainly with Locke/Celes's help via Bolt. Sabin and Gau potentially have access to Imp and/or Sleep. Gau likely has access to either Wind Slash, Air Blast, Fireball, x3 Special, Rock, Plasma, Sand Storm, Antlion Rage(both options are fantastic), Eye Goo Rage(both options are fantastic), Chickenlip Rage if taken on a detour around the continent, or Rain Man Rage on subsequent battles.

I tried to have Sabin kill enemies there quickly to avoid the issue, it did not work.  I didn't try using the Fight command, but that's because I couldn't exploit weaknesses at that point.  Summoning espers with Celes is something I hadn't considered, partially because I forgot, partially because the mod doesn't tell you what they do.  That definitely could have helped though.  As could Muddle, since I think someone in my party had access to it, but I naively thought it was single target like in vanilla so I didn't learn it.  The fact I didn't have Full Moons for Locke hurt.  I wish I would have bought them, but when I saw them in the store, my comment was I had no idea how good they'd be, and I couldn't afford to spend GP just experimenting with things.  (This is one of the big examples where an increased sellback rate for items would have helped as I could have bought the Full Moons to try them out in Zozo with Celes and not felt bad if I had to sell them.)

8 hours ago, Cecil188 said:

The point is, while any specific option may not be obvious/possible to an arbitrary player, one of them should be, either through being a fan of Noiseblaster, experimenting with Rage and enjoying Air Blast, or doing the "hold A and pray" strategy with Sabin. Given that nothing else there is super powerful, it should become evident that taking them out first is a good strategy. Does that mean they shouldn't be nerfed? No. However, is it necessary to nerf them to be able to progress? Absolutely not.

There are definitely options.  If I had been willing to sit through a dozen game overs trying to figure things out, I probably would have found them.  That's incredibly frustrating though.  Not because game overs are unacceptable, but because I was easily beating random encounters just before this.  And the random encounters immediately after this didn't give me any problems either.  It's not like I was having trouble in the mod overall.  It was that I'd run into seemingly random difficulty spikes, often followed by the difficulty seeming to drop back to where it had been before.  That's why I didn't focus on the mod being too difficult.  It's why I focused on saying things were imbalanced, or inconsistent.  I'm not saying, "Waah, the mod is too hard!"  I'm saying, "It's frustrating 3% of battles in this mod give me game overs while 97% pose no challenge at all."

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3 hours ago, zz1000zz said:

Except I beat Zozo with ease despite having ridden a chocobo like that.  I considered the possibility riding the chocobo would cause me problems with being underleveled, thinking I might have to leave Zozo to fight battles because of it.  Not only did that not happen, I had very little difficulty with Zozo.  People had warned me Dadaluma would be hard, yet I beat him on my first try without even meaning to (I planned to fight him once to see what the battle was like so I could prepare, yet I found the battle easy).  I even brought this issue up during my stream, saying if I were underleveled because of riding the chocobo, why was Zozo easy?

Since then I watch that part on your stream so first off you wren't actually undererlevel see my current playthrough :

Part 8

This was actually close to your LV, I should have record a bunch of Random Battles in SC if I knew someone would thought they were so hard, so the thing is I did money grinding with this party (with EXP disable to prevent overleveling), not even playing optimally against SC's mobs, I even hit Firestorm and guess what :

-Never got hit by Firestorm nefore being able to take actions as you claim even on Pincer or back attack
-Everyone here could survive a Firestorm, so even if get hit by one I could still finish the fight without dead characters, and I was using Vig Locke and Gau probably the 2 frailest characters at this point.

And so I watch a little your stream and sorry to say but this is exacty about having the wrong mind set and I don't even know where to begin :

-First off Gau you were still using Albatross's rage while a bunch of other Rage would be better, you know I agree that testing all Rage is an ass but that's why the Printme is given with the mod and contains what Rage can do.
-Second you notice on you first battle that the Wyverns are the big annoyance here, so why on earth are you not focusing on them ? Also Switchblades + Thief's Glove I don't know why you did that and I don't really care the point is this is useless and I don't know how someone would think this is usefull.
-Third : You are slow on your fight especially the first ones where you take quite a lot of time to act at all.

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If the mod wanted me to be a higher level at that point, that's fine.  It did nothing to suggest that prior to that point though.  If the mod wants me to rely heavily on status ailments to deal with random encounters, that's fine too.  But again, the mod did nothing to suggest that prior to that point.  And it doesn't do anything to suggest that after that point either.  This is what I talked about in my summary, calling the mod imbalanced.  No matter how much one may think the way I played was bad, I had an easy time of the mod up until Ultros/SC.  After that, my only difficulties in the WoB were Shiva/Ifrit because of not knowing how to time Runic to catch Ice 3/Fire 3, the mine cart ride (not the boss, just the randoms) and one enemy on the Floating Continent (Behemoths, because of not knowing how to play around their Meteor).  I find it difficult to swallow the idea it was entirely because I play dumb that things were easy 95% of the time yet soul-crushingly difficult the other 5%.

Except these 5% being soul-crushingly difficult are for what I can see entirely your fault, on that subject while it doesn't imply to heavily rely on Statut Ailments, and to be fair relying on Statut Ailments isn't mandatory, you would think a J-RPG player that going into a mod would at least play around with them, and I guess you will say to me the same excuse as someone who was playing New Threat another mod where Statut Effect can be good saying to me "Trying status effect is an hass", and you know what that's bullshit to me cause this is basically the exact same thing as finding ennemies elemental weakness you try everything until something works, moreover just like Elemental weakness BNW standardize statut effect every ennemies of the same type are susceptible to the same statut effects so once you spot something that work, every other ennemy of the same type are more than likely to be susceptible to the same statut effect.

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If battles in BNW are supposed to be like this, where you can get a game over for failing to neutralize/kill an enemy extremely quickly, that'd be one thing.  They aren't though.  That doesn't happen in ~98% of random encounters.  The only other enemy I can think of like that was the Pterodactyls on Lete River (I can't remember if that was changed for 2.0).  I don't understand how one could reconcile, "This is normal and how the mod is designed, you're just playing wrong" with, "This doesn't happen anywhere else in the mod."

Well I reconcile with you were failing to deal with that ennemy, cause clearly as Cecil, Nowea and I pointed out there was a ton of option and not only statut effect, that you didn't even consider, and that's a fail on your part no matter how much wall of text you write to try pretend the opposite.

 

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One thing to note is that 5% of the encounters being "soul-crushingly difficult" is that those were the encounters *you* found difficult. In comparison, most of the stuff *you* found difficult were things that I found trivial, whereas some things that beat me the first time around were things that you have never mentioned and thus I assume you had no difficulty with. The idea here is that there aren't specific randoms that are overtuned(necessarily), but instead randoms that counter the setups that we're running, and as long as we run different setups, we will find different encounters difficult. The trick is to be able to handle *everything* in an area passably well, instead of being able to handle some things very well and some things poorly. In this instance, having Sabin/Gau as your damage dealers worked poorly, as Locke and Celes have the more consistent options against them. However, against the other randoms, (Gau's)Fireball and Sabin's Fire Dance worked well. Furthermore, I watched portions of the fights, and characters were sitting idle at times. While Sabin's claws were indeed insufficient on their own, I never stated that they would be sufficient; they *would* be sufficient when paired with other characters working in conjunction with him.

Quote

 If I had been willing to sit through a dozen game overs trying to figure things out, I probably would have found them.

And this brings me to my other point: It is possible to know what works well ahead of time, through several manners. The first is that you've already fought the Albatross. This lets you be aware of options such as Sabin's Suplex, Edgar's Noiseblaster, and by extension, Cyan's Flurry, as well as Imp susceptibility from experience using it with Terra. Given that Albatrosses are problem enemies in themselves, it's reasonable the player would have felt encouraged to use status ailments there to aid them, and thus not unreasonable to expect that *something* status related was used against them on the Lete River. The second is the tutorial house, which I assume you visited. There, you will learn, among other things, that flying enemies are susceptible to Bolt. And thus, now the majority of the strategies listed above are fully within access without suffering a single death.  There's also the note within the tutorial house that scrub enemies are typically vulnerable to plenty of things unless it's undead, which now allows you to include Bserk and Sleep as viable strategies. And while there's no way to know that these would work ahead of time, it certainly wouldn't take many attempts to ascertain that they do.

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54 minutes ago, Nesouk said:

Since then I watch that part on your stream so first off you wren't actually undererlevel see my current playthrough :

Well, a number of people said the expected level was ~14, including BTB.  If the guy creating the mod says the expected party level is ~3 levels higher than what I have, I'm inclined to think I'm underleveled.

 

56 minutes ago, Nesouk said:

-Never got hit by Firestorm nefore being able to take actions as you claim even on Pincer or back attack

I already posted to explain what I was remembering and how it wasn't Firestorm.  I'm all for correcting errors like this one by me, but it'd be nice if you'd acknowledge I corrected it before correcting it yourself.

57 minutes ago, Nesouk said:

-Second you notice on you first battle that the Wyverns are the big annoyance here, so why on earth are you not focusing on them ? Also Switchblades + Thief's Glove I don't know why you did that and I don't really care the point is this is useless and I don't know how someone would think this is usefull.

I explained exactly why I used that setup during my stream.  I even explicitly said I thought it was a bad setup but didn't see what weapons I had that could be better so I went with the Switchblades for the stat boosts.  When I found the Thief Glove, I said it seemed redundant, but that the stat boosts made it seem like one of my best choices.  Now, perhaps that reasoning is flawed and I had a better option (something you also fail to mention is I eventually switched one of the Switchblades for a shield and the relic for one which offered MDef instead of evasion), but being derisive about a decision without examining the explanation given for that decision is a waste of everyone's time.

1 hour ago, Nesouk said:

-Third : You are slow on your fight especially the first ones where you take quite a lot of time to act at all.

I can't see what you are talking about.  I don't think I executed commands slowly.  I spent a lot of time waiting to execute commands, but that was because of things like time being paused so there was no upside to inputting commands rather than waiting (especially since checking for counterattacks is a thing).  Sometimes I also didn't act with a person because I was saving their action.  But aside from maybe two battles where I had switched to a different character slowly (or ones where I had just given up), I can't see what you're talking about.

1 hour ago, Nesouk said:

Well I reconcile with you were failing to deal with that ennemy, cause clearly as Cecil, Nowea and I pointed out there was a ton of option and not only statut effect, that you didn't even consider, and that's a fail on your part no matter how much wall of text you write to try pretend the opposite.

This doesn't reconcile anything.  As I pointed out, I had an easy time with random encounters the way I played before the SC.  I had an easy time with every encounter on the SC except for ones with Wyverns.  I had an easy time with every random encounter in the 90 minutes after this.  Whether or not there is a better way to beat this one random encounter than I discovered doesn't change the fact no other random encounter required such effort in the two hours before or two hours after this one.

If you think the difficulty of that enemy is good, that's fine.  My question then is, why aren't any other enemies in this part of the game as difficult?  Nobody has said a word about that, despite the fact I've repeatedly stressed I"m not saying the mod is too difficult, merely that certain enemies are extremely difficult relative to the things around them.  Could I have experimented with various things, finding a solution after five or six game overs?  Perhaps.  Perhaps it'd have taken a few more.  But guess what?  There was no incentive for me to put that sort of work into any other random enemy on the SC.  Nor in Zozo.  Nor in the IMRF.  If the player is supposed to do that for enemies, okay.  Then why don't they have to for other enemies?

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Now for a segue.  In Discord, an issue came up because people told me the Kaiser dragon's Ultima shouldn't deal as much damage as I remembered it dealing.  My understanding is Stamina is supposed to be the only thing which reduces the damage from Ultima so characters with high Stamina should be able to tank the attack better than others.  My experience doesn't fit that, and from the sounds of things, there may be a bug involved.  I'm including two screenshots of the damage I took from Ultima with a party of Terra (50 Stamina), Relm (37), Celes (44) and Sabin (103):

Sabin took 1,550 damage in both cases, as well as a dozen other test cases I performed.  As far as I could tell, the damage never varied on Sabin by even a single point.  On the other characters, it could vary by 150 or more.  Sometimes the damage on other characters would be slightly higher than the damage on Sabin, but often, Sabin would take the most damage.  It seems Stamina may not be working as intended against Ultima (and maybe other attacks).

5_1_stamina.PNG

5_1_stamina2.PNG

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For more further info either for Vig or Stam the variance break at 86, until 85 it successfully reduce damage of defense ignoring attack once we hit 86 we take more damage in Kaiser Ultima case we jump from around 1200 with 85 Stam to over 1600 with 86.

For physical I tested on Zorothian's Shrapnel Edgar took 103 with 85 Vigor then jump to 142 with 86.

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Just to add to what Nesouk said, we also tested this with attacks that don't ignore defense with the same results.  This seems to be a bug with all damage.

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To quote my theory(which I have significant confidence in) from Discord for the sake of clear documentation:

"(Damage * [225 - (Vigor or Stamina * 3/4)] / 225) + 1

This is the reduction factor for the low end of Stamina variance. Of note here is the factor of 3/4. At 85 Stamina, this factor reduces it to 63.75. At 86 Stamina, this factor reduces it to 64.5. I highly suspect that this reduced factor is overflowing once passing 64(which is 2^6), and causing issues.(edited)

If it is indeed overflowing, the floor becomes higher than the ceiling, and may account for the complete lack of variation."

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FWIW, I believe the problem was confirmed to be that 86 * 3 is 258, which has overflowed by 2.  The division by 4 only happens after the overflow.  A possible solution would be to divide by 4 first then multiply by 3.  That has the downside of certain Stamina/Vigor values doing nothing in the formula due to rounding, but that'd be a minor matter compared to the current situation.  (And it would only matter in the damage reduction formula, Vigor and Stamina would work as they currently do for all other things.)

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Posted (edited)

Looking at the formula, you can factor out the 3 to make it:

(Damage * [75 - (Vigor or Stamina /4)] / 75) + 1

this doesn’t solve the rounding problem, but it saves a few bits.

To solve the rounding problem, factor out the /4 to get:

(Damage * [300 - (Vigor or Stamina)] / 300) + 1

Can this work with the 300? Or is 256 the max for formulas?

Edited by SuperHario
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This formula is a Synchsyi fix so it may take a bit to actually happen unless someone like Bropedio drops a fix on us. Nice find. 

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So continuing my playthrough

Part 8

Magitek factory part, cut out the money grind to buys Ocean Claws for Sabin and Tiger Mask for him and Gau as well as getting Rage for Gau (mainly Rain Man), I did poorly against Ifrit and Shiva yeah, Number 024 give me some bad element weakness once he got to a good one (Bolt in this case) he goes down quickly, the train section isn't to bad Number 128 goes down quickly with Gau's Rain Man Rage, Sabin attacking with Ocean Claws and Locke with Elec Sword.
The Cranes are still the very big disappointment of this section and I still think they were better before and wish we revert them to their previous gimmick.

Part 9

Sealed Cave : I tried to limit myself with Blackjack spam, well it's a Zombie dungeons so Cyan's Mindblow is a good undead killer as is Magic Edgar once he learn Rasp, the Centurions fight is fairly easy keep using Poison attack and they spend most of their time using Remedy also Cyan's Dispatch is good here.

Part 10

Burning house is the easiest section of the game, once Strago learn Ice (not even Ice 2) he can one shot the Grenades, and Heartfire is still the easiest boss of the game and can potentially be 2 shot if one play Magic Strago and Maduin Terra and summon Shiva and Bismarck XD.

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I'm a big fan of BNW and played through 1.8 and 1.9 several times over the past few years. I wanted to help with the 2.0 beta and waited later until a stable release was available.

 

My first notice of the enemy behavior was during Mt. Koltz with Condor's Gale Cut and Trillium's Raid. Overall, I liked the changes with enemies that forced my (aka the player) to  explore what actions forces what counters and also useful applications of status conditions.

 

After completing the scenarios, the unequip imp was centered in the black screen that told of the upcoming battle in Narshe. I took Shadow, Celes, Edgar, and Gau to Zozo. I found Gau's Hornet Rage to be my best choice this early, a boosted physical with the Storm Belt plus float and haste was too good to pass up, and having Image never hurt. Dadaluma proved an enjoyable fight: Shadow and Gau adding Image to my party helped, along with Edgar's Bio Blaster to clear out the lackeys. I finished Zozo with my characters around level 12-13, and I rarely ran  from fights.

 

Cyan and Sabin came along to Vector, as I like switching around my party to use characters that I previously left behind. Sabin and Cyan were already almost over the Level 10 exp bump at the Battle of Narshe, thanks to their longer scenario I'd guess. Spent some time gaining ELs while getting Golem and newer equipment. GP was strained some points when coming to new town, especially arriving at the SC. i don't mind this too much, as it just means the player needs to better manage their resources, and nothing's prohibitively expensive in the WoB. Vector is one of my favorite parts of the game, so I liked the change to the Ifrit and Shiva battle. I did have increased random fights after the mine ride, but I saw this issue posted before and don't think it's too problematic with the close restore point.

 

Took Terra, Gau, Mog, and Setzer through the Sealed Cave and had some problems at first with the boss fight there, but was made possible after adjusting equipment. I found most problematic fights could be solved by readjusting my party's gear instead of grinding levels. To that end, boss exp is a nice quality of life change too. Nothing really of note until after reacquiring the Blackjack and exploring before the FC. I did find the Cactaur enemy rewards 10 EP when it runs away, which I don't think is intentional as Doom Gaze had the same problem fixed.

 

I took Siren Edgar, Siren/Seraph Celes, and Kirin Cyan to the Floating Continent with levels 17-18. Wiped in some FC fights, especially to Gargoyle's Quake which taught me to keep my party floating. I don't mind the increased difficulty, as the FC is the endgame of the WoB and the player should be familiar with enemy behavior by now. For Atma, I tried draining his MP first to try a new approach, having Shadow run support. Cutting him off from Flare, Rasp, etc. did help the second phase. Celes with Ice 2 and Cyan with Dragon whittled away his HP. I do think replacing Edgar would've made this fight and the FC easier though, as Cyan and Celes can rasp just fine.

 

For WoB, my ELs were focused as such:

 

Terra – Unicorn & Carbunkl, Stamina focus to help with Morph and plan for her to wield Atma later.

Locke – Ramuh & Kirin, Kirin helps when dodging fails and the increased stamina wasn't wasted, as he usually dual-wielded with the Scimitar.

Edgar – Siren, planned to have him Rasp Atma but I generally went with a Golem build in past playthroughs.

Sabin – Golem, the right claws hit hard and I find Golem the first/second best summon (with Seraph also in the conversation). More HP makes Golem more worthwhile.

Cyan – Kirin, often had Knight Cape equipped with a counter katana, my primary C&C in the WoB.

Celes – Siren & Seraph, planned to taking her to FC to rasp and her magic skillset is great for this dungeon.

Shadow – Phantom, he's a ninja!

Gau – Stray, often had him with Storm Belt, Black Belt and a strong physical Rage. Cephalid, Hornet, and Templar were my preferred Rages in the WoB.

Mog – Maduin, I like improving his chances of dancing well, rather than boosting his magic damage potential higher with more Shoat.

Setzer – Shoat & Seraph, Slots are great and I understand nerfing Solitarie.

Strago – Carbunkl, planned to have him use Wind Breaker later, so setting him up for it. I do having Carbunkl's equip bonus be auto-Regen, since it improves Strago's Holy Wind and works well with Terra too.

Relm – Ifrit & Zoneseek, I like having a speedy healer, even if her damage isn't as high as pure Zoneseek, having more chances to hit her improved proc rates for brushes is okay too.

Finished the WoB after roughly 16 hours, but I did talk to everyone again, which I normally skipped doing in previous runs. 

I'll be finishing up Kefka's Tower over the weekend and will talk of my WoR experience then.

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Bropedio has pushed out a patch that fixes a lot of the current RC27 issues.  See the pinned messaged in Discord.

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