Only 12 hours in and starting to lose interest

DekzDekz Posts: 3
edited June 2015 in TL2 General Discussions
As the title says, I now have 12 hours played on Torchlight 2 (with Synergies Mod) and I'm starting to get bored.
I'm playing a Cannon Engineer on Veteran difficulty.

I was playing last night when I realized that pretty much all I do it hold down right click for Blast Cannon and wait for everything to die.
It's cool that it's an effective build and all, but it's soooooo boring to play.

I could respec my Engineer if there is a more engaging build out there? Or I could start a new class that is hopefully more fun to play? Something that actually involves using a bunch of skills.

I'd even be willing to step down the difficulty level if it means having more fun.

Any ideas?

Comments

  • WhitewolfdogWhitewolfdog Posts: 138
    Embermage, very squishy, takes some getting used to with managing mana for your main attack and entrapment skills.
  • ZiddersZidders Posts: 14,348 ✭✭✭
    "step down the difficulty level"?
    You're playing on veteran. That's part of your problem. Too easy. You need to step it up. Never play on anything lower than elite if you're used to playing these kinds of games.
    ItfooQF.png
  • DekzDekz Posts: 3
    Zidders wrote:
    "step down the difficulty level"?
    You're playing on veteran. That's part of your problem. Too easy. You need to step it up. Never play on anything lower than elite if you're used to playing these kinds of games.

    I don't see how that will help anything? I'd just have to drink more potions while spamming Blast Cannon constantly.

    My problem is not that the game is too easy, it's that the gameplay with this build/class is boring.

    I suggested stepping down the difficulty level as it would allow me to play builds that are more fun to play, yet aren't super powerful Elite viable.
  • SerkevanSerkevan Posts: 1,586
    Blast Cannon in vanilla IIRC is not that powerful. Have you played a full playthrough without mods yet?
  • ZiddersZidders Posts: 14,348 ✭✭✭
    Dekz wrote:
    Zidders wrote:
    "step down the difficulty level"?
    You're playing on veteran. That's part of your problem. Too easy. You need to step it up. Never play on anything lower than elite if you're used to playing these kinds of games.

    I don't see how that will help anything? I'd just have to drink more potions while spamming Blast Cannon constantly.

    My problem is not that the game is too easy, it's that the gameplay with this build/class is boring.

    I suggested stepping down the difficulty level as it would allow me to play builds that are more fun to play, yet aren't super powerful Elite viable.
    You're right, my bad. I'm dumb lol.
    ItfooQF.png
  • oledanhanoledanhan Posts: 15
    I remember when I bought this game just after launch. I played only up to act 2 and then quit for years. I started it up again a couple of weeks ago and am now loving the game. The reason why I didn't like the game the first time is obvious to me now: I didn't like the build I made the first time. With other builds it is loads of fun for me and I can't stop playing!

    Maybe you just picked the wrong build?
    When I play I get emotional.
  • oledanhan wrote:
    I remember when I bought this game just after launch. I played only up to act 2 and then quit for years. I started it up again a couple of weeks ago and am now loving the game. The reason why I didn't like the game the first time is obvious to me now: I didn't like the build I made the first time. With other builds it is loads of fun for me and I can't stop playing!

    Maybe you just picked the wrong build?

    I had a similar problem, and I don't just think it's picking the wrong build - I think the game does a poor job steering 1st time players into effective builds. I started as an outlander who wanted to dual-pistol, because that seemed cool... and there's literally no active attack skill that works with dual pistol for outlander. (AFAICT, the attack skills use the right hand pistol only). Not only that, but there are only ~2 active attack skills which look anything like normal attacks. Compare to the Amazon in D2 which had multiple skills which augmented base ranged attacks, each style of which had at least one end-game playable version. The D2 design meant your natural inclination on playing the class would lead to something at least plausible. TL2 made it hard to get into the game, because it made it hard to play characters in a natural way. (When I did finally get into TL2 - recently - I settled on an auto-attacking Outlander. And to make that work I needed to learn how all the good Outlander buff and debuff skills worked early on to have something that was even playable).

    The situation with Outlanders is made even worse by strength being the damage-boosting stat for pistols, which is completely unintuitive. My first Outlander from when I started shortly after release massively overinvested in Dex - which gets killed by diminishing returns on crit chance - and that probably did as much as anything skill-related to kill character viability.
  • SerkevanSerkevan Posts: 1,586
    Dexterity clearly states that it does not, in any way, improve base damage. BTW I never understood why people assume DEX should be the stat that defines ranged damage when it clearly has nothing to do with it. I mean, bows would intuitively depend on Strength... and crossbows and firearms would have fixed damage.
  • Serkevan wrote:
    Dexterity clearly states that it does not, in any way, improve base damage. BTW I never understood why people assume DEX should be the stat that defines ranged damage when it clearly has nothing to do with it. I mean, bows would intuitively depend on Strength... and crossbows and firearms would have fixed damage.

    Sure, I agree, it's plenty clear that dex doesn't improve damage. But what isn't obvious is that Outlanders which use their weapons *need the strength damage boosts* to be competitive. A naive approach would think that you wanted piles of dex... and you really don't. Nor is it clear just how severe the drop off in +crit chance for investing in dex is until you do it, and how worthless that makes any investment in dexterity that's much beyond 100. The game nowhere tells you that gains from strength are constant, while gains from dex quickly taper off - which should make it no surprise that dex is the second worst stat in the game (after vitality).

    As to why dex *should* govern damage from firearms - the primary cause of difference in damage between shots is *placement*. Strength has literally no effect whatsoever. The claim that 'pistols' do 'fixed damage' makes as much sense as claiming swords do fixed damage. In fact, too much force causes overpenetration, which should do less damage, so if somehow strength was relevant to force of impact... yeah. (I mean, the game confuses and comingles armor penetration with damage, the former of which does involve force of impact. But still, more strength is without effect on penetration force for fired ranged weapons).

    (Strength isn't particularly relevant to damage even in bows - while a given strength might be required to properly draw a particular bow, there's no advantage to having more strength than that. The bow conveys a particular amount of force based upon its draw strength. And the damage dealt by the bow has little to do with the draw strength in most circumstances - it'll effect arc and range more than it effects actual damage. And pre-modern bows which require high draw strengths historically would have been used for volley fire, at which point force-at-impact is primarily determined by gravity. Placement, again, is going to be the major determiner of damage, and volley fire isn't going to be relevant for a combatant like Outlander who is operating alone).
  • SerkevanSerkevan Posts: 1,586
    Sure, but you've got critical hits for that; (assuming no armour) it's easier to have a baseline damage with a certain range of variation to represent hits that don't impact in vital areas, while critical hits are extremely well-aimed hits. I fail to see how over-penetration in swords deals less damage, however; sure, it's not efficient, it makes the weapon be harder to control and, case of hitting a shield, more prone to be stuck and leave you completely set up, but damage of a slicing weapon *is* dependent on force of impact. After all, no small part of a sword's damage is due to the concussive impact.

    I agree that the point on bows is tenuous, however.

    Anyway, it's a game and a fantasy one at that so going for historically accurate or even realistic approaches for stats may not be the best course of action; IMHO, readability is paramount and making sense for the sake of making sense comes second or even third. I just wouldn't assume that dexterity increases damage unless explicitly stated (and I figured that diminishing returns in crit chance were going to be important after spending something like 10 or 20 points, but then again I'm used to working with numbers, so it's no wonder people get confused).
  • Serkevan wrote:
    Sure, but you've got critical hits for that; (assuming no armour) it's easier to have a baseline damage with a certain range of variation to represent hits that don't impact in vital areas, while critical hits are extremely well-aimed hits. I fail to see how over-penetration in swords deals less damage, however; sure, it's not efficient, it makes the weapon be harder to control and, case of hitting a shield, more prone to be stuck and leave you completely set up, but damage of a slicing weapon *is* dependent on force of impact. After all, no small part of a sword's damage is due to the concussive impact.

    I agree that the point on bows is tenuous, however.

    Anyway, it's a game and a fantasy one at that so going for historically accurate or even realistic approaches for stats may not be the best course of action; IMHO, readability is paramount and making sense for the sake of making sense comes second or even third. I just wouldn't assume that dexterity increases damage unless explicitly stated (and I figured that diminishing returns in crit chance were going to be important after spending something like 10 or 20 points, but then again I'm used to working with numbers, so it's no wonder people get confused).

    Sorry, overpenetration is primarily a concern with ranged weapons (especially firearms). Not swords typically (although possibly for piercing thrusts).

    The most important consideration should be *balance*.

    1. When every other class has a viable and intuitive one-stat strategy, there's no reason not to make ranged weapons use dex for damage. It certainly didn't hurt D2 (which did use dex for damage on ranged weapons iirc), nor did it make ranged characters overpowered (most top builds were spell casters, which seems to also be true in TL2).

    2. Alternately, because raw damage boost is so much more valuable than just about everything else (and virtually everything else comes with diminishing returns), you could easily give dex not only crit chance and dodge, but also crit damage and execution chance, and it might be close in value to a strength or focus stat which just gives a raw damage increase. That's how disparate the impact of damage increase is relative to everything else.

    Finally, your argument on critical hits would only be relevant if the improvement in crit chance was linear with dex. It's not. Not even close. (And it still tops out at 100%, for which you need gear to get to, and you can hit 100% crit chance pretty much equally well with 100 dex / rest str as full investment in dex, meaning its not actually a reason to invest in dex). Put another way, 200 str is +100% damage. 100% crit chance is generally less than +100% damage (bar other modifiers, the primary source of which is, again, strength) *when you don't fumble* (which is checked first and pre-empts critical hits). 200 dex does not give you 100% crit chance. 500 dex does not give you +100% crit chance.

    Edit: Assuming I understand the mechanics right, critical hits simply maximize damage. A normal hit will do the average between the min and the max damage. If x is max damage, and y is min damage, that means normal hits do (x+y)/2 damage. Since (x+y) is necessarily > x, critical hits are necessarily less than +100% normal damage.
  • SerkevanSerkevan Posts: 1,586
    Considering critical hits always roll the highest possible damage value within the weapon's range, (unless using axes) it's a helluva lot of damage* because the best possible roll is then multiplied**. And I disagree on balance. First off, it's totes impossible to attain. Second, fun factor is more important than balance, especially if we are talking about primarily single-player games.

    I don't get how any argument I made on critical hits is relevant or not, I only said that crits and dexterity are intuitively correlated and that the fact that said correlation is not linear ingame is readily apparent, at least to me. Should it be that way? No. Definitely not. Are people who get trapped into building dexterity at fault for not putting attention? Probably. Could be clearer, but it's not hard to see.

    *So, example weapon (with base critical damage, +100%) has 50-100 damage. For such a killing instrument, base damage is ~75 dmg/hit. A critical hit is 100*2=200 damage. That's a 166% increase, and obviously gets higher with strength.
    **And fumbles, be it building DEX or STR, usually fall below monster armour threshold so they might as well be called "misses". Not always, but still. Dexterity should reduce fumble chance, IMO.
  • Serkevan wrote:
    Considering critical hits always roll the highest possible damage value within the weapon's range, (unless using axes) it's a helluva lot of damage* because the best possible roll is then multiplied**. And I disagree on balance. First off, it's totes impossible to attain. Second, fun factor is more important than balance, especially if we are talking about primarily single-player games.

    I don't get how any argument I made on critical hits is relevant or not, I only said that crits and dexterity are intuitively correlated and that the fact that said correlation is not linear ingame is readily apparent, at least to me. Should it be that way? No. Definitely not. Are people who get trapped into building dexterity at fault for not putting attention? Probably. Could be clearer, but it's not hard to see.

    Oh sure, you eventually notice, if you take the time to pay attention to the gains every single time you boost dex. It only obviously falls off after observing across multiple levels.
    *So, example weapon (with base critical damage, +100%) has 50-100 damage. For such a killing instrument, base damage is ~75 dmg/hit. A critical hit is 100*2=200 damage. That's a 166% increase, and obviously gets higher with strength.

    According to viewtopic.php?f=30&t=44975 this is wrong. A critical hit does not do double damage. It maximizes damage, and then gets multiplied by the critical damage multiplier, which is a strength based variable. That strength-based multiplier is what makes it a lot of damage, and to get it, you boost strength, not dex. (The base critical damage modifier is +50%, so i suppose we can credit it as 1.5*x damage. Any bets on how (x+y) relates to 1.5*x? I'm guessing x+y is still bigger most of the time, since most weapons people actually use will have flat additive damage modifiers, and base y is no smaller than .5 base x)

    (In fact, 5 points of strength gets you +2% critical damage. 5 points of dex doesn't even get you 1% crit chance most of the time. Strength is pretty clearly better here even for critical damage, since boosting critical chance outside stat investment is massively superior to stat investment).
    **And fumbles, be it building DEX or STR, usually fall below monster armour threshold so they might as well be called "misses". Not always, but still. Dexterity should reduce fumble chance, IMO.

    Fumble has a flat 21% chance which cannot be modified by stats, fumble is checked first, and any fumbled attack cannot be a critical hit. That means that even 100% critical hit chance still only scores a critical hit 79% of the time.

    So, for comparison, 250 dex and 5 str has +2.5% damage, a 38% critical chance, with +52% critical damage. 250 str w/ 5 dex has +125% damage, +150% critical damage, and ~1% crit chance.

    Our weapon of comparison will be a Two-barreled revolver of lethality (i happen to have one in my stash), which deals 192-384 base physical damage, has +164 physical damage, and is currently unsocketed. That makes its damage 356-548.

    The dex 'build' will fumble 21% of the time, critical .79*.38 = ~30% of the time (30.02), and use a normal attack the remaining 49% of the time. Normal attacks average 1.025 * (548+356)/2 = ~463.3 damage. Fumbles deal 81.325% of that = ~376.8. Criticals deal 548 * 1.52 = ~833.0. That means the actual average damage per attack = 463.3 * .49 + 376.8 * .21 + 833 * .3 = 556.0.

    The strength build will fumble 21% of the time, critical .79 * .01 = .79% of the time, and use a normal attack the remaining 78.21% of the time. Normal attacks average 2.25 * (548+359)/2 = ~1020.4 damage. Fumbles deal a mere 26.494% of that = ~270.3. Criticals deal +150% of max = 2.5 * 2.25 * 548 = 3082.5. That means actual average damage per attack = 1020.4 * .7821 + 270.3 * .21 + 3082.5 * .0079 = 879.2. That's almost 1.6x as much damage as the dex build.

    Then consider what happens should either character find +5% or even +10% critical chance gear. Who benefits more? (Hint: it's the strength build). And that's looking at strength vs. dexterity when dexterity has the *highest payout*, because it includes the early point investments. Each additional point of dex contributes less and less damage, while each point of strength contributes equal amounts of damage (and dramatically benefits from flat +% crit chance gear in a way that the dex build doesn't).

    Based on that, one could make the strong claim that investment into dex doesn't make any sense *unless* one has already made a substantial investment into strength (and that investment should necessarily be limited).

    And once you start factoring in monster armor, the difference in actual damage inflicted are going to diverge even more markedly.
  • SerkevanSerkevan Posts: 1,586
    Oh sure, you eventually notice, if you take the time to pay attention to the gains every single time you boost dex. It only obviously falls off after observing across multiple levels.

    "Multiple levels" means something like five for experimental observation at most; putting... what, 10-15 points already tells you it either cannot be linear at all or it will be hard-capped. If you don't notice until you've spent a truckload of points, you weren't paying attention.
    According to viewtopic.php?f=30&t=44975 this is wrong. A critical hit does not do double damage. It maximizes damage [technical babble follows]

    It *does* do double damage as long as critical damage bonus is +100% [Again, armour notwithstanding]. You pretty much repeated what I said with more precise calculations; I wasn't in the mood of getting the accurate formula or using different ranges of critdmg modifiers; I settled for 100% on a whim (and the fact that I didn't remember if it was 50 or 100% with no extra Strength, lol). What I posted is absolutely true with regards to critical damage/normal damage relation, however.
    (Hint: it's the strength build)

    Like I ever said building dexterity was better in any circumstance.

    You've completely missed the point; you said that dexterity was a mechanical trap, and I disagreed because it's painstakingly obvious that Dexterity is, while not **** useless, underwhelming (and easily substituted by +crit chance affixes).
  • ChthonChthon Posts: 1,855
    I think the game does a poor job steering 1st time players into effective builds.

    So what? Examine your premise. Why do you think that first-time players should be steered towards effective builds?

    Obviously, I ask because I think they should not be. The gap between what's immediately obvious and what's truly optimal corresponds to the space for player growth and the game's replay value and longevity. I can think of only two situations where you (the designer) don't want to absolutely maximize that gap:

    One, where the game is so frustratingly hard using the immediately obvious builds that a large proportion of your target audience just gives up and quits. A few notes here: First and foremost, TL2 isn't anywhere near that hard. I could set a sleeping kitten on my keyboard and it would handily defeat NG0 on casual difficulty. If you're frustrated because you can't beat elite difficulty with the very first build you thought of, then the problem isn't the first-timer difficulty balance, it's ego and impatience preventing you from admitting that you're not really great at the game (yet) and need to spend some time learning. Second, who exactly is the target audience? Big developers like Blizzard and EA aim for the lowest common denominator -- more sales mean more profits, so they seek to make their games appealing (i.e., not frustrating) to every single idiot who can hold an x-box controller. Small developers often make games for people like themselves. And devs tend to be pretty smart people, so these games are often challenging gems with lots of complexity and depth. Then the developer goes out of business since there's not a big enough audience for games with that level of challenge. Here in the peanut gallery, I tend to sympathize with the second stance -- I want a game that's challenging for me; to heck with the rest of you. Runic strikes me as kind a of schizophrenic on this front.

    Two, where there's mandatory cooperative multiplayer. When you need a certain level of competence from random players in order to make a team work, the game has to steer even the bad players to this level. Otherwise even the good players just can't get stuff done. Things like clans or guilds or whatever you want to call your mechanism for allowing good players to associate into cliques only work to counteract this when the playerbase is expanding. When it contracts, each clan finds itself shorthanded more and more often, and the pool of unaffiliated players is already picked clean of talent. Mergers are hard because half of the (usually very senior, very good) players in leadership roles need to give them up. I'm reminded of trying to make teams work for "elite" content in GW1 five years in. Obviously, this isn't an issue for TL2 since multiplayer is purely optional.
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  • ZiddersZidders Posts: 14,348 ✭✭✭
    Chthon wrote:
    Runic strikes me as kind a of schizophrenic on this front.
    I think this is my favorite thing you've ever written lol.
    ItfooQF.png
  • LarvaLoungeLarvaLounge Posts: 28
    edited June 2015
    ... and volley fire isn't going to be relevant for a combatant like Outlander who is operating alone

    I think that one of the most devastating attacks in the game would like to refute that.

    (Sorry I have absolutely nothing useful to add to this discussion, but Poison Volley is so un-godly powerful that this line gave me a little chuckle.)

    EDIT: @ post below ('cause I don't want to further clutter this thread with my ramblings) Oh I know, I got the point... I wasn't making any commentary or criticism of your argument. It was just funny to me.
  • ... and volley fire isn't going to be relevant for a combatant like Outlander who is operating alone

    I think that one of the most devastating attacks in the game would like to refute that.

    (Sorry I have absolutely nothing useful to add to this discussion, but Poison Volley is so un-godly powerful that this line gave me a little chuckle.)

    The point was more that real volley fire is something that only works in formations and at a distance. Poison volley doesn't represent anything like a real volley, it's just a spell that requires a weapon to cast. xP Also, minimum distance for an actual effective volley is something like 50 yards, which is well beyond sight range in-game.
    So what? Examine your premise. Why do you think that first-time players should be steered towards effective builds?

    I never said maximized or optimal builds. But some form of iconic build should represent a basic form of the character. Otherwise you get a severe disconnect between what a class is supposed to represent and what it actually does. (No one goes into Outlander expecting glaivelander to be an obvious build based on the short class discussion. Not that there's anything wrong with their existence, but there should be an effective - not optimal, effective - build which focuses around the basis of the character description - using ranged weapons - which supports things like dual wielding pistols and has an active skill or two supporting that playstyle.

    When dual-wielding pistols pretty much means using your skills entirely on passives and buff/debuff casts that have nothing to do with firing the weapons, that's working around the skill system to play something which feels like it should be an iconic style, not something you have to force to work.
  • embermanemberman Posts: 729
    I don't really have an issue with none of the strongest builds being immediately obvious. What I do have a slight problem with is the fact that there don't exist any strong builds (obvious or not) around the "iconic" dual-pistol outlander. I will tip my imaginary hat to anyone who figures out an akimbo outlander build that can reliably make it to level 100 in **** Elite without excessive farming.
  • emberman wrote:
    What I do have a slight problem with is the fact that there don't exist any strong builds (obvious or not) around the "iconic" dual-pistol outlander.

    Try 2 Over-Under Revolvers with 10% chance for Glacial Spike bonus (may take a while to find em, I farmed merchants =/)and 2 Eye of Aleera in each (4 slot pistols work too, eyes are probably easier to farm than the guns). Works quite well with Rapid Fire or Chaos Burst... not to even mention the almighty Poison Volley. Of course, Glacial Spike probably works just as well with Glaive builds, but I don't DO glaive.

    My Outlander is Strength based cause I roll with a pistol and shield for very high level stuff, and Glacial Spike doesn't proc often enough with only one pistol to make it worth going full Focus for... But I bust out the dual Glacial Spike pistols if I'm doing stuff that isn't TOO dangerous, and it works well enough even on a strength build. It makes me a better player too, cause I actually have to avoid getting hit.
  • RetsRedsRetsReds Posts: 1,013
    Well:
    1. Synergies is balanced for Elite difficulty only - it says it right there on the loading screens. Veteran Synrgies is easier than Veteran Vanilla (Elite Synergies is harder than Elite Vanilla). Either play Elite Synergies or Veteran/Elite Vanilla
    2. The Engineer is the tank of TL2 - pick something squishier if you want something more challenging.
    3. The Cannonier is a cookie-cutter build. Play something more obscure - go beat the game with a HC Elite melee mage (downgrade from Veteran? To Normal? What for?).
    4. 12 hours is what - lvl 20-30? The end of Act 1 / middle of Act 2? So you haven't met the purple-mess-spilling casters of Doom in Act 3 yet?

    Pick a fun char, upgrade to Elite, finish the game and then come say if it was boring or not. ;)
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