Pillars of Eternity Review
and its DLC The White March
Spiritual successor of Baldur’s gate they said ! 😉
Obsidian experts in the background… should be exceptional then ! Well i must admit it was a great experience… for the first 150 hours ! And unfortunately it became more and more boring over the 40 remaining hours. Yeah because i’ve spent around 190 hours on this game, nearly as much as i did on The Witcher 3. To tell the truth… I didn’t expect an non-open world rpg based on an old classic, to be so long and full of quests ! Also before starting this review… A little negative point i’d like to mention
is that Pillars of Eternity is consuming a lot of processor’s resources ! And not that much from the video card… as a result my computer which was running Witcher 3 in 1080p at 60fps, was barely able to run POE at 45-60 fps in cities… and in some big fights with a lot of spells, i even went down to 10-20fps… Considering i have an overclocked GTX 970, with the power of a small Gtx 980… i was like “what the fuck !”
I bought this video card in order to not change my processor you fuckers !!
Very addictive during 2/3 of the game !
Pillars of Eternity is VERY interesting and can consume all your evenings in a matter of seconds ! You launch the game just to take a peek at what this game have in store for you, it’s 8pm after a long day’s work… and by the time you decide to close the game you’re surprised to see 2am on your clock ! God i just spent 6 hours without notice ! At least when i was playing to Witcher 3 i was aware of the time going on, but in Pillars of Eternity i just completely lost all marks of space and time 😀
During the first week… i think i spent 70 hours playing to Pillars of Eternity ! It was even more intense than with Witcher 3… very surprising in fact ! POE have a very deep and solid background, and as i was unfolding all the mysteries of the main plot, it was like i was enthralled, (like the bard tune in Everquest for those who know it 😉 ) like if i was under some kind of spell to keep me in front of the game 😀 Hey ! Why would you need drugs lol ? Just play POE ! So a little warning before launching POE… just be sure that you can allow it several hours during your first week ! Otherwise you’ll to think to it even at your work 😉
Let’s put some screenshots !
Path of the Damned… you’re kidding right ?
You know at first sight i was scared of this “Path of the Damned” mode, because once you choose it you can’t go back, you can’t lower the difficulty ingame in case you’re stuck ! And it was described as a mode for Rpg Veterans, for Hardcore gamers, for great tacticians ! hmmm… You want my 2 cents about this ? Nothing was further from the truth ! C’mon… the more i was advancing into the game, the more i was leveling… the more i was feeling SUPER UBER ! If path of the damned is considered to be the hardest mode, i already feel bad for those who chose Hard… because that must be Mickey Mouse difficulty lol 😀
Pillars of Eternity is an EASY game ! Ok in Path of the damned you might have some hard encounters at the beginning… but as long as you use potions in your equipment… as long as you use everything you found like traps, summons or scrolls… and not store everything as if you were a compulsive collector (so don’t do like me lol…) then it’s going to be all right ! No frankly… Yes there are many opponents in POTD mode… many that’s true ! Sometimes it’s like you fighting whole regiments of foes ! Then just create a Bottleneck, a choke point if you prefer… Just stand in a doorway and they won’t be able to surround you 😉
Though… I have to say that there is one battle that i never won… Well first of all it’s because i wasn’t aware of it, it’s a side quest in The White March DLC. And i only learned about it while browsing the net, when i had already completed the game. It’s the Hardest fight of the whole game, where you have to kill nothing less than 2 powerful dragons and their master. So far… after 5 tries i didn’t succeed so of course i kept my POE savegames and one day i’ll give it another try.
Can’t be more difficult than a Dark Soul Boss anyway lol…
Just a little advice… Take a MONK ! Only one and you’re good to go… why ? Because the monk in POE is basically a killing machine, you’ll feel sorry for everything against you… apart from the Adra and Alpine Dragons in the game… Your Monk can TANK everything ! And your monk possess THE MOST IMPORTANT ABILITY ingame ! At least in Path of the damned it’s kinda required if you want to crush everything in your path. It’s an ability that let your monk kick your opponent in front of you, and affecting a large cone of foes as well ! That means if you’re standing in a doorway, archway, whatever… you spam this ability and you’re dealing damage to several enemies at the same time, while on their side only one can touch you lol…
I only had 1 monk in my team…
I could have replaced my fighter and my (useless) rogue as well by monks… but then battles would have become far too easy… No point in making them even more easier and spoil the fun of tactics.
Also even if in POTD mode you can only bring with you 2 supplies of campfire, meaning you can only rest 2 times to replenish your abilities during your travels or in a dungeon… You can still find campfire supplies if you explore well enough, and having a rogue is a good thing to detect hidden caches and secret passages. The key to success is to manage your team health ! If your main tank have been hit very hard during the last fight, just let him out of the next fight and let another one take the damage ! Like this you can wait a long time before deciding to make a campfire. I never ran out of campfire supplies during the whole game.
Let’s put some screenshots !
Max Level is the MAJOR Flaw of POE…
I don’t know how they designed the game… but there is a critical issue in Pillars of Eternity, and that’s the Max Level ! Well i don’t have anything against the point to put a Level cap… as long as it’s not going to ruin 40 hours of game ! Because 40 hours is very long… There are more than one hundred quests in POE, and that means you’re going to gain a LOT of experience ! And it also means you’re going to Max the level Cap LONG BEFORE the end of the game… and then after that ?
You’re going to gain experience sure, but it will serve no one in your team…
I understand that to become too powerful is also ruining the game… trust me… when i began to reach levels 10+ and more, with my spellcasters gaining mastery over their spells, so they could use 1 per encounter for free… it was like the game was already becoming far easier ! When i reached level cap of 16 my cleric was casting 4 free group buffs at the beginning of each fights, my wizard had a free summon to distract enemies and also free magic missiles… Sorry but nothing could resist me lol ! Ok there were some hard encounters, but these were harder because i was NEVER using any potions or scrolls… nor either i was using all my summoning artifacts… yeah i could summon around 20 Free mobs lol… but then i would have to rest to be able to re-summon them, so i was keeping them for Big fights.
So i understand how unbalanced a game can become as we accumulate more and more power… But in that case please think to another kind of experience ! To some alternate ways to spend it like the Alternate Advancements in Everquest, because it was very frustrating to gain thousands and thousands of XP for 40 hours… Yeah i was 40 hours far from the end of the game when i reached 16, and i wasn’t able to use all that XP… it was like questing for nothing lol. And as for XP… Money ! There is far too much money in this game… and while it’s going to serve you well during more than 100+ hours… after that consider money as something you’re not going to use anymore.
You’re already far too powerful… why would you buy potions and scrolls when no help is needed ? lol…
Let’s put some more screenshots !
White March Part 1 and 2… Hard first then a Joke !
The white march indeed raised the level of difficulty… but not that much… and it depends of the area ! When i saw giants attacking the village… i was scared and prepared for a tough encounter ! until… i saw the giants falling like flies… Then i’ve encountered other kind of creatures, very fast and annoying ! And also some kind of Wraiths summoning your members out of the team, in order to surround them ! These were good ideas to stimulate the battles 🙂 And of course foes were able to use all the deadliest spells and abilities at their disposal ! Fortunately i would say !
It was already too easy, so i wouldn’t like my foes to be nerfed on top of that 😉
So The white March part 1 was a nice dlc… though TOO MANY BATTLES to my taste. If you love battles you’ll be in your element ! Sometimes i even felt like if i was in Diablo… Hordes and Hordes of creatures ! It was like in the old D&D days… room, monster, treasure… apart from the fact that in White March… interesting stuff is rare ! So you’re fighting tons of mobs and in the end you only get 1 or 2 magical items which are really interesting, the rest is useless…
So for all the energy you spent, it’s most of the time not worth the hassle !
Then let’s talk about the part 2 of white march… I am not going to spoil it but… There’s definitely a Difficulty Problem ! Some guys made a review about the part 2 of White March on the net, and said it was the apocalyptic conclusion to a great game ! Apocalyptic… when i hear this… I imagine it’s going to be as tough as it was in Mass Effect 3, at the end of the game in the hardest difficulty with hordes of mobs forcing you to take cover to survive ! But no… The part 2 of white march have a solid plot yes, but the foes are not that solid… and it’s VERY TEDIOUS ! Killing… Killing… Killing… stuff to be found ? yes but you already have better… oh… 🙁 ok… Killing…Killing… Zzzzzzz… oh forgot this one… Killing… Zzzzz…
Will continue another day this is so boring !
And trust me i always activated the High Level Scaling content when i saw the little window, telling me i was already too strong… It was even more funny when a guy told me that i should be careful to not awake the one sleeping below the ice… I was expecting some kind of Awful BOSS… the kind that you have to rethink your whole strategy… NO unfortunately… one spell and my monk got rid of that “so called Boss” in less than a minute. Designers have really fucked this up 😉
Let’s put some last screenshots !
In the form Pillars of Eternity is indeed the spiritual successor or Baldur’s Gate ! But not without flaws… I am a completionist but this time i didn’t even finish my companions quests ! Why should i bother in a game where there is no more rewards for me ? Already capped the level 16… Already feeling godly… nothing is a match anymore (apart from one Optional Very Hard battle with 2 dragons i mentioned earlier) ! So i’ve completed the game nonetheless but the 40 remaining hours were really boring ! I would have put 5 on 5… but these 40 more hours without real rewards nearly killed my love for the game.
So the end of White March 2… that some drunk testers reviewed saying it was an apocalyptic end, was just… a Piece of Cake ! A bad joke from the devs who underestimated the power of a lvl 16 team -_-
On another matter, POE alternate sometimes from a videogame view to a book view, and i really liked these little parts ! I used to play with old rpg books like Lonewolf “where you are the hero” so it awakened some kind of nostalgia in me 🙂 Too bad… the game is largely more filled with battles, than with these “books parts“. Also i love to read… but sometimes there’s far too much talk during discussions ! No frankly i love books but we’re in a game, and it became annoying to the point i’ve never opened any books i could find ingame to read them. The discussions were already filled with Massive dialogues…
So i wasn’t going to open books on top of that.
The difficulty i played on : Path of the Damned ! Hard… then Easy then TOO EASY 🙁
How long is this game : Around 190 hours for me… loved the first 150 ! Hated the rest…
Would i recommend it to a friend ? : Yes… But better seek a mod to lower the XP gains.
Did i pay for it ? : No… Pirate Bay ! Steam version is better, i had Pink flickerings with Gog version.
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