Now, I’m going to get into the 1.4 changes.
Relic and Shard Merges
Okay, so this was the one part of the update that I was genuinely completely happy with. When I had talked about currency merging in my previous feedback posts, it was something that I thought would be good for the game, but that would never actually happen. But It did! Things seem to have been simplified in a pretty good manner, and I like the ideas and depictions for the new relics.
(One small note: these relics break the general pattern of less fancy for lower rarity things and fancier for higher rarity things, so I am finding that I have to keep tapping on them to find out which rarity they are. In light of that, it might have been nice to, say, add a few gems or an extra bit of fancy pattern to the dragon Legendary relic to distinguish it. And some of the mythic relics could have looked a little bit more like the sets they belong to (a shield for the guard relic for example, and perhaps a crescent moon for the night set) to help prevent needing to memorize them. But it’s an extremely minor quibble, and there are far less relics than before to learn in any case!)
Hoping that we might possibly get a similar change for relics and scrolls as well (as greedy as it feels to want after what we got, I think that would help the game as well). But even if these are the only changes, I’d still be extremely satisfied with them.
I’m super glad reforging exists at least. Thank you for finally adding it!
But I’m extremely disappointed to see I was right to be worried about the cost (when someone refuses to tell you it, you know it’s going to be bad).
I think a lot of it comes down to how the devs seem to want followers to be used. You seem to be moving away from constant use to using them once in a while if there’s a need. But personally, I liked being able to use your followers a lot (I know not everyone agrees with me about this). They’re a part of the story and on your journey with you, so having them help you and having reason to visit them in the tavern a lot seemed to me to go along with that. By requiring gems to be used for so many of the followers, it forces you to think carefully about when you want to use them, and to leave them sitting idle most of the time. I want to be able to use my followers often and have them be actively helping me on my journey, instead of just having to sit there unused. And the gems make the cost too expensive to allow for that.
Gems are also already used to buy mythic relics and follower crystals, and personally, I don’t really have any gems left over after that. So if there’s yet another place where gems are required, then it creates some very hard choices as to what to spend them on. (Also, why require relics to craft things suddenly, when they’re already so rare and valuable?)
And followers already have a resource that they’re supposed to use anyhow: ore. By requiring them to use gems, ore, gold, follower crystals, and even relics(!) in combination, it’s a double or triple cost a lot of the time, which makes it even more expensive. And it makes ore even more useless than it was before, as its purpose is overlapped with other currencies.
I think devs are also overvaluing what reforge provides you with currently. You get 4 completely random attributes for 200 gems (no ability to keep any old ones and no control at all over what you roll). There are over 20 attributes (over 10 “normal” attributes (such as guard and heal) + 5 wards and + 5 strikes). I don’t have enough brain power or desire to follow through all of the steps of finding the exact probability to get 4 specific attributes (or rather, 3 since the first one is always the same) but it’s something really small like 0.0125%. So you can reroll over and over again without getting attributes you want, and when it costs 200 gems to do so, and you have 12 pieces of gear minimum that you need to do that to, it adds up to an insane cost. Personally, I would never be willing to spend that many gems getting good attributes on a piece of gear, especially when I need gems for other things. And a system that’s there but you can’t afford to use is only minimally better than a system that isn’t there at all.
So what would I have liked instead of the current cost system? Well, in my ideal world, for elements, I would have liked for elemental runes to be used to select which element you reforge a weapon to. There seems to me, to be a bit of a surplus of elemental runes in the game compared to how many you need, and if we’re stuck with so many different types of them instead of just simple non-element-based ones, why not make use of that? Reforging elements could cost ore and a rune, with there being a slot where you can select which specific rune you want to use. Runes without an element could give a random element, and runes with a specific element could give that specific element. That was unlikely to happen however, and there were several other scenarios I would have been happy with:
New unique currency used for reforging.
- Yes this would increase the number of currencies in the game again, but they were just drastically simplified and reduced in number, so having 1 new currency with a distinctive purpose that doesn’t overlap anywhere would be more than fine to have.
- The ways to get this currency could have ranged from shop buy (either weekly or random) to dragon participation reward to mode completion reward (such as challenge completion, chapter completion) to a reward for the upcoming adventure mode to a season reward - there are a lot of ways they could have gone with it that would make it reasonable to get but not abundant to the point where people could change attributes and elements on a whim.
Using ore and time or ore, time and gold as the reforging currencies.
- The limit of time would ensure it took people some time and investment to get their gear with attributes and elements the way they want them. And you’d have to choose between having the crafter busy crafting new gear or making your old gear better. Which would even out the rate of becoming powerful to something reasonable, I think.
- This solution involves being able to sacrifice one piece of gear to get its abilities onto another piece of gear. For example, if you had an epic belt with mighty and mythic belt with any 4 attributes, you could merge the epic belt into the mythic belt (after paying your follower the appropriate amount of ore) to be able to assign mighty to overwrite one of its attribute slots with the might attribute. It would make the gear you get and evolve stay meaningful, which would be great.
Things I would have disliked but been able to resign myself to:
Ore or ore + gold cost for random attributes and elements, gems cost to select specific attributes and elements
- This would have created a bit of a p2w-feeling to the game (require a rarer/premium currency to have the full features) but at the same time having an increased cost for increased ease is understandable.
So yep, there were plenty of other routes you devs could have gone that would have been better.
Also, when it comes to costs, you devs are really far off the mark for what’s reasonable, it seems. I think there’s some fear that if you’re too generous to players, then we’ll become too op and ruin the game. I’d like to bring up another game I play as an example of how devs can be reasonable, or even generous with costs, without it ruining their game. In that game, gear is one of the big upgrades for the heroes you use. Each gear gets random stats when it’s given to the player, as well as random stat upgrades at some levels. Gear and stats are pretty important in that game, and players try hard to get the right bonuses on their gear. And yet, recently the devs for that game allowed players to reroll 1 stat slot on their max rarity gear endlessly (so they could get the exact stat they wanted) and allowed them to reassign the stat bonuses as many times as they wanted. And the currency used to do so is easily obtainable as one of the lowest tier rewards for a guild event. Now, I don’t expect PQ to be anywhere near as generous. But it shows the level of generosity to players that can be given without breaking the game. You can have less steep costs for the Reforging system and have the game still be fine.
So in conclusion, as cool as Reforging seemed at first, I think it ultimately wasn’t handled well due in large part to the cost (which seems to come from you devs wanting followers to work differently and you overvaluing the features we got).
Adventures look pretty exciting actually! It’ll be cool to have branching paths like in past PQ games. However, I really do hope some of the issues with the game get priority over working on adventure, as I would rather have a good, functional game that lacks some content than an unplayable game with more content.
Also, it was really nice to hear updates on some of the things players have been wanting. (The communication is very nice too btw.) However, we’ve been promised most of it multiple times already just for the plan to change, so I’ll remain somewhat skeptical until we see evidence that it’s actually happening. Also, after the 1.3 and the 1.4 update (and the continued out-of-touchness of the devs, displayed even in the most recent update), I’ve kinda lost hope that these long-awaited changes will be implemented in a way that actually makes things better. We’ll see, I guess. But you’ve already managed to kill my confidence in you and my excitement for new updates, so…
I’m also sad that we’re getting incremental UI changes that somewhat fix the major issues, but still result in a worse UI than previously. The UI is making it so that I don’t want to play the game. Still willing to see what the changes will be like, but so far they don’t seem to have really resulted in major improvements, even though you devs have been listening somewhat at least.
And finally, yes you have a lot to work on and everything takes time! But your priorities seem to be somewhat skewed when you pick what things to work on. For example, choosing to make Adventure mode instead of tackling the problem with Kingdom bosses. And don’t forget, even if a system needs to be overhauled, temporary changes to make it less frustrating while you work on it can be meaningful and keep players from quitting. Not every fix needs to be a major, permanent one.
Finally, we’ve been getting some better communication recently, which has been greatly appreciated. Hopefully this will continue into the future.
Despite a promising start, and a few good parts, the 1.4 Update was a big disappointment for me. And recent statements by the devs have continued worrying trends and thought patterns. I’m still sticking around for now, but I’m worried for the future of the game.