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Why is IWD2 so underrated?

Discussion in 'Icewind Dale 2' started by Cecily Griselda, Aug 8, 2016.

  1. Cecily Griselda Gems: 3/31
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    I can understand why Neverwinter Nights wasn't liked. But why IWD2?
     
  2. Sorvo

    Sorvo Where's the nearest pub? Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    Maybe because it uses 3e rules.
     
  3. Nizidramanii'yt Gems: 10/31
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    I liked it a lot, mainly because of the 3E rules. It featured too much combat and too little roleplaying. That's my bet on why people didn't like it. It's also the one game that doesn't get the remake. Not that it needs it anyway.
     
  4. SlickRCBD Gems: 23/31
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    Diablo II was a contemporary and it was even more combat and less story so I doubt it was the combat orientation.
    The "it's the one game that doesn't get remade" is putting the horse before the barn. They decided not to remake it because it was the least popular. It has had 15 years to prove itself before they came out with the remakes for the others.
     
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    I don't think it was particularly disliked (its scores are very close to that of the original IWD), but since it's pretty hack & slashy and somewhat light on story (unless you dig very deep on your own), the whole series was less well received than Baldur's Gate saga for instance. The sequel was also quite a bit buggy (considerably more so than its predecessors).
     
  6. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    For me, IWD2 is just pretty hard to get into. I want to get the party planned out beforehand (to avoid restarter syndrome), but that's 6 characters to plan without even knowing what the best builds are. At least in NWN it was only one character to plan :)
     
  7. xosmi Gems: 20/31
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    The same thing goes for IWD1 though, which was arguably more popular then its sequel.

    Personally, even though IWD2 brought a few good things to the table, like using the 3e ruleset and having a better interface, as far as thew story goes it was quite thin on plot, perhaps an issue with bad pacing.
    Nowhere during my past playthroughs have i felt a sense of urgency while playing through the game, the entire game world just feels smaller in scope when compared to the first game.
     
  8. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Urgency usually gets lost somewhere in all the side quests in any typical cRPG. Urgently save Imoen? Let me first do this quest, go there and do that quest, I believe this quest leads to a good item, oh, and lets do some of the stronghold quests as well.

    I have IWD, but still haven't installed it. I like the freedom in the 3e rule set that allows for a more flexible build. In the 2e implementation like in BG1/2/IWD, making a character is much simpler. Multi-class, dual class, single class, proficiencies, that's more or less it.
     
  9. The Magpie

    The Magpie Balance, in all things Veteran

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    I think there are several reasons, but the main ones would be the lack of party interaction and bugs. Several gamebreakers slipped through the net in IWD2. Also, by the time it was out BG2 had set the standard for intra-party interaction back in the day & without it the game only had the Infinity Engine combat to fall back on. Also, 3e rules were perhaps the least newbie friendly of any D&D ruleset, due to the sheer number of bewildering (and easily character-breaking) options multiclassing gives you. Multiply that complexity by 6 for the max number of created characters, and I think it's easy to forgive people for bouncing off of the game.
     
  10. Keneth Gems: 28/31
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    If we're talking bewildering rulesets, 2E absolutely takes the cake out of all D&D systems ever created. It might have been harder to screw up (more so in video games), but by contrast, the vast majority of players never managed to learn the details of how the system actually functions. As a result, I hear people saying to this day that BG2 is one of the most challenging RPGs they've ever played, when it's actually one of the easiest out there for anyone with even a cursory understanding of the rules.
     
  11. xosmi Gems: 20/31
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    Being able to visualise how the game would play out on a tabletop helps a lot with this - i'm guessing most people that run into trouble understanding the ruleset probably only have experience playing other rpg's.
     
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    I didn't have any trouble, but by the time I got my hands on BG I'd already played the Gold Box games available for the Apple II a decade earlier and that led to me and several classmates creating a D&D group that I played in my teenage years.

    Lots of people found the THAC0, saving throws and AC to be counter-intuitive because the lower it is the better. Heck, I had a hard time getting used to it after playing Final Fantasy Legend II and possibly Bard's Tale (can't recall if Curse of the Azure Bonds was my second or third RPG).
    Other than that, I did not find a whole lot of other things difficult about the computer game ruleset, but that was in the days of printed manuals and no built-in help system, so I would actually read the manuals before playing. Especially since you would be lost in quite a few awesome games without them to explain the controls.
     
  13. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    I didn't have any knowledge of D&D before I played BG2, and I managed to figure it out, mostly. The negative ACs are not that hard to figure out by just comparing the different types of armour, and using some game logic. I.e. plate must be better than leather, and plate has lower numbers, so lower numbers must be better. I won't argue that it's a bit counter-intuitive, though.

    And I favour fighter classes, which makes combat a bit easier than if I'd started with a mage or something.
     
  14. coineineagh

    coineineagh I wish for a horde to overrun my enemies Resourceful Adored

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    This game is great. But it has some shortcomings that make its replayability limited:
    1) Linear storyline; the story goes from A to B to C, and only some sidequests can be done later, but even those have limits in flexibility.
    2) Hardcoded storyline; modmakers have complained that ID2's coding differs from BG2. That's why BG2 has hundreds of large-scale fanbuilt mods, and ID2 just a few smaller tweaks.
    3) Pathfinding issues; especially with 6 party members in a confined space, the large inflexible cursor circles get in eachother's way, and you may find your teammates walking the long way around (and meeting enemies on the way) instead of moving a few steps forward as you wanted them to.
    4) Smoothness issues; hardware may matter in this regard, but every desk/laptop I played the game on had some form of choppiness or lag. Sometimes you can't get the game to pause on time, or you end up clicking pause twice, effectively unpausing again.

    But the benefits of 3E weigh up a lot against the abovementioned downsides. I play ID2 and megamodded BG2 with equal enthusiasm. The classes, skills and feats are more substantial, the combat tactics are more interesting, the power of casters and spells does not get outclassed by overpowered weapons like in BG2, and you need more than just melee to win. There is a gem in the rough in this game, so I hope it gets a significant overhaul.
     
  15. Keneth Gems: 28/31
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    By whom? Beamdog isn't working on it and no one else has the license to do it. I think the best you can hope for is full support in GemRB.
     
  16. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Linear storyline never stopped me from replaying NWN (though admittedly, there are lots of mods that got a lot more play time than the OC ever did), the 3e class system definitely has its draws (and drawbacks).
     
  17. Shardnax Gems: 6/31
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    That's what does it for me. I've only ran into a gamebreaking bug once, during my first playthrough, in the Magma Chamber. As a single-player game it's not something I like to play a lot, same with PS:T but, IWD & 2 are heck of a lot of fun with my brother.
     
  18. xosmi Gems: 20/31
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    You don't like to play PS:T ? Blasphemy! :p
    Out of all the infinity engine games, i think PS:T does the whole party banter/interaction the best, and has the most interesting characters overall as well.
     
  19. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Rather more importantly, in PS:T, the talk actually has impact on the game. Not like BG2, where you may get 4 options, all of which lead to the same result.
     
  20. xosmi Gems: 20/31
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    Agreed, i had a ton of fun going through the circle of Zerthimon with Dak'kon for example, though the fact it unlocked some spells and increased his stats a bit was more of an added bonus in that case.
    I also vividly remember the first time i accidentally talked Vhailor into killing himself on the spot :p
     
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