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What I dislike in PoE


#1

I left PoE and many ppl over there left too. Various reasons, but technical issues that prevent your progress or kill your char and a clear repetition of them over many years is a sign of something wrong on the developers side.

RNG is like the god behind PoE.

The skill system combined with socket system is overcomplicated for a certain % of the players. There are millions of paths to follow in the passive tree, yet most of them lead to chars that hit a wall and won’t survive end game. Most players are going to fail in their path, which causes frustration. I don’t understand the logic behind the tree, there are life nodes, mana nodes, attack nodes, etc spread out in every direction. You must spend not some time, but a substantial time in studying it. Are all nodes meaningful? Some nodes provide +3% resist all. What is a node like that doing there when items already can provide +10% to + 80% resist? At least for me, a node that grants the same stat that an item grants adds flexibity at the cost expense of user friendliness.

I have a feeling that smaller trees are more manageable than one tree for all. Including for the developers. Because one giant tree becomes fragile, where one change here can break something else far away due to unforseen consequences. That reminds of the butterfly effect. By one giant tree for all I didn’t meant one tree per class, but rather specialized trees for different aspects of the character. Another idea comes from “less is more”, meaning fewer nodes but nodes that can be upgraded somehow.

PoE’s tree has so many branches that I have no idea what was their philosophy behind it. For ex: node A increases elemental damage. Then a subclass node increases casting speed. Or the other branch increases fire damage. Then sub-subbranch node increases the explosion caused by fireballs. Some hierarchy like this could at least be more meaningful for players. In some ways the tree does have subnodes, but it also has detours and turn around paths that add to the confusion.

The sockets have 3 layers of RNG. Quantity + colors + links. Which means that some skills are locked out of reach unless you overcome RNG. The system creates a puzzle for you to solve, which seems to go in the opposite direction of the word ACTION. The links are sequential o-o-o-o, which naturally leads many players to think that the order of support skills matter, yet order does not matter. You can have two or three of the same support skill, but you have to learn by yourself that having two of the same support skill does not add, you can’t stack up + 30% + 30% + 30% added cold damage for instance. Not every support gem supports every other active gem. Sometimes a player is using gems that just do nothing together.

Propecies seem to be the perfect example of RNG over RNG. There are prophecies that grant you something that already exists in game, such a rare drop or 6 links. But if the prophecy itself is rare to get, what is it adding to the game other than more gambling?

Can drops be biased in one direction or must they be completely random? Most of the time you never find what you want. Kill a boss, some magic item with one affix drops. Open a chest, some alteration orb drops. You use the orb on some sword, some random affix is applied. It’s one layer of RNG over another layer of RNG. Killing a boss demands time and strenght. But clicking “roll the dice” demands patience and luck. Yet both methods have the same underlying RNG.

For ex: there could be a slow progress between +0.1% life leech till 10% life leech. And / or incremental upgrades to your gear that does not refresh the affixes every time. Diablo 2 mods do that.

There are special interventions that can happen at random anywhere. A lot of players complain that when they do not want it, it does show up. When they want it, they have to rely on luck because the game is randomly choosing to place it or not where you are. Imagine that you have 10 different unique content that can be spawned on some area (crystals, unique boss, portal to somewhere, magical chest of rewards, etc) if each one has 10% of chance of spawning, you have no idea which one you are going to encounter. If there are 100 unique content and the probabilty goes down to 1%, it becomes even more random and even more unpredictable.

In many games there is the concept of Rock - Scissor - Paper. Applying that to resistance would mean that while you can have 100% resist fire, you cannot have +100% resist all elements. It doesn’t look too much fun to watch streamers with builds that just spam a skill and grind to death without much trouble as fast as it can.

Is there a point where complex customization becomes more bothersome than fun? Damage being split in four or five classes and with different multipliers being applied under different conditions. It becomes a puzzle, a math game. What’s the difference between +10% increased weapon damage and having +10% increased [weapon type] damage? Combine the skill tree with gems, all affixes from all gear and affixes from flasks and you have like 10 million combinations.

The progression curve in PoE is weird. As you can die as many times as you want in an act boss, even if your char is underwpowered you can kill the act boss after dozens and dozens of deaths. But at the end game the game becomes like 10x harder and 10x more time consuming, it skyrockets. I remember playing PoE before act 4 was finished. I died many times because of inflicted bleeding. I came back now with Synthesis (my char was in standard, I skipped the league content) and played all 10 acts. For some reason no more mobs inflicted bleeding on me during this playthrough.

One thing left me wondering about the Azurite mine. It took me two or three deaths to understand the sulphite and azurite farming and the darkness. I was wondering: what if the darkness was replaced by poison? Poison dealing damage and killing you seems more natural than dieing because you were too far away from a light source. In the whole game the light radius plays no role in damage you take, so it was weird to die in the dark in the mine. I remember that Adria in Diablo had a speech line that would talk about darkness and treasures. Some players, including me, would missinterpret that thinking that higher light radius yields more and better drops.


#2

eeeeh ok?


#3

I came here because I was curious about this game and. Posting what I dislike in reddit gets downvoted to hell. Posting in GGG’s forum is kinda pointless because the search function already finds the same discussions over many many threads.


#4

It’s not really that complicated. Regardless, PoE wasn’t originally intended as a game for the mass audience that wont put time into learning the mechanics etc of the game. It was made as a hardcore experience.

Well for one, what’s weird about a game getting substantially harder as you progress into harder content? Isn’t that exactly what’s supposed to happen?
Plus as someone that’s put thousands of hours into PoE the game doesn’t really get that hard. And if you struggle that much there’s always a bunch of extremely easy to put together builds that trivialize the game.

Pathfinder and Slayer are both basically immune to bleeding. If you weren’t running either of those or a staunching flask you most certainly did get inflicted with it you just didn’t notice.


#5

Use a staunching flask as you progress.

PoE is an economy game. Sell what you find, buy what you want/need.

Can’t get to 100% resists in PoE. PoE (and many games before it) are more complicated than A > B > C > A because they have more damage types giving you, the player, more to do.

Can’t be poison damage because of mitigations for poison (e.g. CI). Had to be a new damage type so it damages all.


#6

Poison was an example. There many other ways to deal non class specific damage: toxic atmosphere, damaging grounds, radiation, etc.

After some time I think I got what was their core idea behind the passive tree. For starters, all classes share the same tree. There are 3 axes: int, str and dex. Plus 3 hybrid axes int + str, int + dex, etc. Everyone can access any node anywhere in the tree, the differnce is how close or far away that node is from your starting point. This explains why there are so many duplicated nodes in the tree. Nodes that boost pretty much the same thing spread out in all places in the tree. With the exception that nodes related to Bow are all close to the ranger, whereas all nodes related to wands are close to the Witch. A witch can travel all the way around to bows, but it’s so far away that it’s probably not optimal. Maybe some players want to do that, but if the char just dies over and over that’s a build that nobody is going to go for anyways.

If I were a designer I would drift away from that massive tree. I’d have a hard time thinkering with “should critical chance be closer or farther away from life?”, “Should increased mana require more or fewer int nodes to travel to it?”, and so on.

It’s strange that PoE focus on economy when so many players are mad at trading that is almost RNG. The other player doesn’t answer to your call, yet the trading site shows that player as immediately available.


#7

Yes. When and only when it makes the learning curve too steep. PoE didn’t use to do this, imo, though it may do so now. (I’m not in a position to make that judgment; only new players are.)

Don’t get me wrong. Complexity added for complexity’s sake does not add to a game in any way. But if it follows the curve of the average player’s expected learning (or is gentler than that curve), then it won’t hurt the game. Only when it doesn’t does it have apparent detrimental effects.

I do distinguish complexity from depth, as you can have the former without the latter. But, you (practically speaking) cannot have the latter without the former. As a big fan of deep games, I will say that complexity is a good thing, so long as it

A) is in service to depth, and
B) is introduced at a pace more gradual than an average player’s learning curve.

If it does not fulfill A, it adds nothing. If it does not fulfill B, then it actively detracts at the early stages of a gamer’s experience. If it does not fulfill either, then it is actively bad for the game and should be removed or tweaked.

Many of your objections appear to be to PoE’s complexity per se, and in theory I will always disagree with that position. It is too simplistic.

I do feel that all games can do a good job of introducing complex mechanics gradually (even genres infamous for not doing so, such as grand strategy), and that most games in ALL genres can, and should, do a better job of this. It’s simply good design, and is far more demanded by modern gamers (of any age) with limited patience. It’s clear that GGG has at least attempted to do this, by sprinkling in encounters with the new masters at various stages throughout the campaign. That at least might be something for EHG to mimic in the future.

(I happen to be one of PoE’s harsher critics, for the record. But in 2019 it has much larger pimples than complexity.)


#8

Complexity is the least of PoE problem, & I am a experience PoE player.

The biggest issues for me, is out of touch developers, & greed. The MTX prices get more outrageous everyday. But if we focus purely on gameplay, hewre are my list:

-Awful multiplayers. Its a glorified Single player online game, that allows you to group with people 99% of the time to trade .

  • Shallow gameplay. 99% mobs fell like dominos, the 1% will one-shot you. Very little thought process in combat. a) kill everything before they kill you. B) learn boss pattern.

  • Out of control damage spikes, one moment you are breezing through, next moment death screen. 1/2 of the time, I have no clue how I died. This paired with BS 10% experience loss.

  • Lab (no etra words needed)

  • Its a currencies/loots to sell farming game. Trading is th ebest & fastest way to get loot. This is everything wrong with a loot base ARPG.

  • Deep crafting, but inacessible for 99% of players except “simple add an open suffix or prefix”, yet GGG insist on add more of the crafting for |<1% of players.

  • RNG is over the top, everything include standard contents (maps) are gated by RNG.


#9

Overexaggeration on most points.

PoE right now is so easy you can do everything as a SSF. Trading then becomes nothing more than bragging rights. If anything it should be the reverse, it should be less power creep. RNG is a moot point. As I said you can do everything on your own in SSF, I personally never trade for maps and always get what I want so obviously the RNG is not as bad as some people claim. Finally you are missing the big point of having an online game - no cheating. Grim Dawn is cool and all but it is way too easy to open a bunch of files and cheat, thus any achievements there are diminished. Servers and always online fix that, you know your achievements are legit and so are the achievements of others.

PoE has its problems like an outdated laggy engine and insane levels of power creep but its definitely not as bad as some people would want to believe.


#10

No idea why People like PoE anyway. I liked it at the beginning, but the Combats are weak, and all other Points you guys mentioned. It had good ideas though


#11

I never claimed PoE is bad. I played Synthesis league for 2 months or so.

I am just pointing out the problems. The title is what I dislike about PoE, not what I like about PoE, which I will happily posted as well. One shouldn’t confuse criticism with hatred. If you think I am harsh on PoE, you should see my thread in Wolcen, which I torn the game to pieces, but not because I hate it, but I want it to be good. Obvously it is subjective, but its 100% honest.

Back to PoE, there is no real leaderbroad in PoE so why bother to cheat. The reason for online is mostly for MTXs.

You think with the prices they charge, many players wouldn’t cheat. Also if offline, people will just made better ones (which isn’t hard considering how ugly most of the MTX armors are), & GGG gets no income.


#12

There are leaderboards for each league as well as various races and flashbacks.


#13

I do not consider the first to 100% meaningful competition, hence the word “real leaderboard” which of course is my opinion.


#14

It still a 100% valid point. The game is not supposed to be a multiplayer one, the servers are there to ensure fair play.


#15

Fair enough. I think lack of good MP is a negative for PoE. It make the game stale very fast.
To put it in perspective, I played PoE for a month & boredom started, but I manage to reach 3 months in Diablo before I started to get bored, mostly due to MP, and how fun it is to play with friends and clanmates in META pushing or just chill low GR.

Don’t get me wrong, I like PoE, but without a good MP, its just feel like a missed opportunity.


#16

Multiplayer does exist but it is extremely limited. Its mostly about certain exp runs but since I never cared going to 100 I never bothered. The other usually seen multiplayer activity is farming with dedicated aura/curse bots. I am not sure how else they are going to expand it. If they make it too lucrative playing solo would be a detriment so I am perfectly content with the current situation. Plus the engine is bad at handling too many effects on the screen as the previous 2 leagues proved.


#17

Got plenty of experience in Path of Exile as well and instead of writing a wall of text I’d say what the biggest problems are.

Insane power creep

Content gating to extremes

Obnoxious trade

Forced to play zombie mode due to ninja nerfs to mapping & currencies

Game content strictly designed around selling MTX both stashes and cosmetics

Baiting with overhyping and false advertising

Zero community engagement aside from hyping

Absolutely horrible balance

Barely any QoL changes

Lack of responsiveness to game breaking bugs for MONTHS

Lucrative lootboxes and practices related to them

Divination cards ruining bossing content

Visual clutter

I don’t think they’ll be fixing these issues for a long long time, and I don’t see myself playing PoE for a long long time either, probably ever.


#18

Absolutely agree with this. Also why I’ve been championing for better MP in LE.


#19

I hate to agree with KMQ about anything but … he is right about most of the complaints.

I am absolutely astounded that GGG has ignored the technical issues to such an extreme extent. Seriously. It is embarrassing. They pretend (for MONTHS as he says) that nothing is wrong or it is not their code (it is your PC, your isp, your ssd, or wtf) and then … voila! They suddenly admit it and this is just stupid and very unprofessional.

Zero community engagement beyond hyping is probably true, but even if it isn’t, it certainly gives that appearance so what is the difference whether it is true or not?

I don’t think anyone can argue that the power creep is massively damaging at this point. Go look at old vids if your memory fails or you didn’t play back then, here is your proof.

I feel sad/bad about it because I really like PoE; the story, many skills, mapping (well not as much now), etc. but … GGG is behaving very poorly.

I will not discuss the lootbox thing as it is really controversial and I never liked them much, and don’t give a shit one way or the other, but I know some people HATE them. I think they will disappear eventually due to fear of regulation but God knows what these people will cook up to replace them. Might be worse!


#20

As I’ve ranted about multiple times on the discord, my issues with PoE are not due to complexity, but because the game is overly simple. Every build feels like a flowchart, and so many skills function similarly.

People say the skill tree is complex, but it’s not at all. There’s almost zero choice in what nodes you pick. First you take life, then you take the best damage and speed nodes in range that match your weapon/element. Grab crit if you’re crit, more damage if you’re not. A large majority of circles are hardly worth taking if they don’t provide such stats or if the numbers are strictly worse than other nearby nodes.

Grim Dawn’s devotions and this game’s skill trees provide far more choice than the massive blob tree PoE has.

Anyway, as I was saying, the moves start to feel the same, everything blends together when monsters are just dying in one-shot to massive AoEs. Almost every move has the same build too. You take your main damaging move, auras that just add stats and make the mana system feel useless, a hex that lowers relevant resists, and then whatever move you can fit that just adds to your main skill’s damage. Most one-shots toward the player will one-shot almost any build, so the differentiation between tank and non-tank hardly exists. All that matters is having enough AoE and damage to zoom through content and make the maximum amount of money, and the market is growing more inflated, so you really need that money to upgrade your build.

I have more complaints, but I can’t think of every single one at the moment. Perhaps I’m also just burnt out due to playing the game for so long… but a lot of that burn out is due to things feeling so similar despite playing different builds every league