Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire


For those, like me, who need to finish the first one in the next year: Forty percent off the expansions at the official store.

Maybe the combat AIs will make combat more palatable for me.


Made a huge difference for me. The excessive micromanagement without AI really turned me off the initial release.


Backed. Collector’s Edition this time, I only did the bare minimum with PoE (not many funds at the time) and I’ll for sure pick up the hardcover guide on Amazon to add it to my collection when the time comes.


First backer update just hit my Inbox. They thank everyone and then talk about the first stretch goal, at 1.4M we’ll see Sub Classes. Here is more info:

> Hail and well met, elves. It’s your buddy, Josh, with some info on subclasses and importing your character from PoE1.

> Subclasses are similar to kits in 2nd Edition AD&D (featured in Baldur’s Gate 2). Our focus has been to give a different flavor to a class through specialization. We want each subclass to do something cool and distinctive that also has a built-in trade-off compared to the base class and other subclasses. For example, if you remember Zahua from The White March, you may recall that he was a drug-addled/enlightened monk of the Nalpazca. If subclasses are funded,you may select the Nalpazca as one of two Philosophies (monk subclasses). The Nalpazca gain greater benefits from using drugs, but their Wound threshold is increased while under the influence.

> One of the most popular ranger subclasses on the team is the Ghost Heart Lodge. All Ghost Hearts travel the wilds of Eora alone, their animal companions having died at some time in the past. However, the bond between the ranger and their companion is so strong that the soul of the animal remains tethered to the ranger through the Between. While a Ghost Heart does not have their companion available at all times, they may be summoned as a ghostly Spirit during combat for a short duration. This companion is not considered a Beast, so spells like a druid’s Charm Beasts and Hold Beasts will have no effect on it, but a paladin’s Abjuration can badly damage or even banish it immediately.

> Now, on to importing your PoE1 character! At the start of Deadfire, you will have the option to import a special end of game save from Pillars of Eternity. This will import your Watcher and the choices that you made in the Dyrwood, including quest states, conversation choices, and how you personally dealt with your companions, friends, foes, and orlan babies. The save game is cross platform compatible, so you will be able to import from Mac to Linux, Gog to Steam, etc. This is the first time that the Obsidian team has the freedom to explore this type of cross game reactivity and progression, and we are very excited to add long term choice and consequence to Deadfire.

> To address three common questions:

> What if my dear friend Aloth “fell” into a Skaenite blood pool?
> If you directly or indirectly got a companion killed or never recruited them in your save game, they will not be present in the Deadfire. However…

> What if I never played Pillars of Eternity or I want to start a new game with different story states?
> During the introduction to the Deadfire, you will be able to establish choices from Pillars of Eternity as though you had played through the game. Importing the save directly is not a requirement for establishing story states.

> Am I still 11th/14th/16th level?
> As you saw in our intro video, Eothas is very hungry and your soul is delicious. Your Watcher begins again as a level 1character.

I’m of two minds on starting over at level 1. Mostly I like it, I think it’s fun to build up from the start in an RPG and become a massive badass. On the other hand, I was looking forward to going form level 15 or 16 and hitting the low or mid-20’s with very high level gameplay and encounters. It’s possible we’ll still see a higher level cap, but I hope the level cap at launch is at least 16.


I think we all learned from D&D that lower-level gameplay tends to be more fun. At high levels you’re overwhelmed with options. How many spells did you actually use in BG2:ToB? Did you feel markedly more powerful at the end than the beginning?

I mean, it was neat killing multiple ancient dragons, frost giants, and whatnot, but if you’re that powerful in the beginning the progression just isn’t there.

It’s also hugely confusing to new players who didn’t play the first game. You start off and are paralyzed by choice, not knowing how to use any of it. BG2 didn’t have this problem because BG1 was capped at like level 8.


I learned no such thing. I HATED lower-level gameplay in D&D. Mid-to-epic level (e.g. BGII) was where it was at.


Yeah, like I said - I mostly agree with the decision. I think the best of both worlds would be what they are doing (starting at level 1) but starting out of the gate with a level cap at, say, 18 and a longer game (on the average). I’d be cool with that.

I always felt low- and mid- level DnD were the most fun, myself. Not that I’m opposed to the high level stuff, but you are correct - managing all those skills, spells, items, options can be a bit of a juggle (especially if you start at that level).


The weather effects they show off in the announcement video are really awesome. I always thought Pillars looked good but this is next level.


Well Tyranny was much better than Pillars 1 – I got through over 75% of it as opposed to 50% for Pillars. Maybe Pillars 2 will be better still, but I’m gonna wait for it to be deployed first.

As for low vs. high level, it really depends on the game. BG II and Planescape were great games at high level. Many other games break down in the later stages because the devs never had the resources to implement the high-level stuff with the same rigor as the early stages. Early stages naturally get vastly more polish because reviewers see them first, and if the intro stuff doesn’t work they can’t ship the game.


For me it’s a matter of principle. It’s way more fun to have a significant buffer of HP and a bunch of tactical options than it is to die if a stiff breeze happens to blow your way and maybe get to cast one or two spells before you’re hitting things with a stick. And starting in the latter situation does not enhance the fun of the former, it means I probably won’t get there. So if you start in position A, it’s obviously not going to be broken due to lack of late game testing.

Now, that doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with level. You could absolutely say that a level 1 character has those things and go from there, rather than starting at level 8 or whatever to skip the squishy boring levels that were included in the system for some reason. But low levels being squishy and boring is absolutely how D&D works, or at least worked in every edition I’ve ever played, and while Pillars did take a few steps away from that, it was not far enough.


This. To this day I avoid BG1 like the plague because I just can’t be bothered to deal with wolves and other wildlife when my characters have 4-10 hp.


TIL that some people will defend anything, even low-level D&D.

I mean, you guys. The system doesn’t even work until you’re about 4th level.


Second gen certainly didn’t; magic users had one spell per day! But it’s more about the feeling of progression you get as your character becomes rapidly more powerful and monsters that would have wiped the floor with your party an hour ago are now crushed beneath your sandaled feet.

That problem was addressed in later D&D versions, and PoE isn’t D&D at all. It’s fun at first level-- less options certainly, but not one spell per day.


Which could easily start off at a level that’s actually fun to play.

And I don’t know about 5th edition, but 3, 3.5 and 4e are all terrible at first level still, just not quite as terrible as 2e.


Both of these are important points to consider if we are going to continue debating low vs. high level gameplay. PoE’s opening few hours are, to me, a lot of fun. In some ways it’s because of how it eases you into exploration and the combat with just two or three party members, and then quickly sets you up at level 3 or so with a full customized party (if you want). And even at level 1 all classes have several interesting tactical options.


I much rather start at low level and build my character(s) up. Getting dumped a bunch of abilities and spells right off the bat makes them feel less to me. Just like I can’t play scenarios in 4X games where I’m not starting from square 1.


HUGELY disagree.

At high levels you get a lot of cool abilities, perks and equipment. You also don’t get one shot if someone crits you. If we’re talking D&D (or pillars i imagine), then your casters actually get to cast more than a couple spells.

It also gives you more options with the story, which is a two edged sword but i think TOB did a good job of it.

Them resetting the levels is somewhat disappointing to me but does not affect my decision to back it at all.


Could not agree more. I’m one who dislikes the high level slower progression and that lack of feeling ‘more powerful’. At low levels, every level you gain results in a marked jump in your abilities. You really feel like the player character and jNPCs have grown and it’s that development that is crucial to me enjoying the gameplay. It’s not that I’d be overwhelmed by choices at higher levels, only that I don’t feel that adding on another spell or being able to use a new skill really makes that much of a difference to me. So, I really am overjoyed that Deadfire will start us off at level 1.

[Edit] And there goes the first stretch goal of 1.4 M. Onwards and upwards! And with a level cap increase as the next stretch goal from 16 to 18, that might make some people that like the high level play happier.


Looks like the $1.4M (Sub Classes) was reached, and now onto the next - get us to $1.6M and the level cap will be raised from 16 to 18 (and we’ll get Russian localization). At $1.8M we’ll see Xoti the Priest/Monk that can join you.

More info from Josh Sawyer:
Greetings. I wanted to write up a brief summary of what an increased level cap will do for Deadfire. I also wanted to explain how companion classes work, especially with regard to multiclassing.

The default level cap in Deadfire is 16, which is where Pillars of Eternity wound up after The White March was released. Raising the level cap to 18 will grant access to an entirely new level of abilities for all classes, from barbarian to wizard.

In our companion write-ups, you will see some characters described as class a/class b. This does not mean that they are forced to be multiclassed, but that the character’s 1st level must be from one of those classes. For example, Edér’s class is fighter/rogue. From level 2 on, you may advance Edér as you see fit, but his first class must be either fighter or rogue. This gives you the ability to customize your party companions while not fundamentally deviating heavily from their core character concept. Note that some other characters, like Aloth, must always start from a single class because it is more central to their concept. You may multiclass Aloth as a wizard/fighter, a wizard/barbarian, or a wizard/cipher, but his first class will always be wizard.



Oh goodie, dual/multiclassing! My second least favorite mechanic from AD&D, right after the per rest cast system :\.