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Baeclast - Chris Wilson interview - Rough Transcript

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Aug 11th, 2021
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  1. T = Tarkecat
  2. O = Octavian
  3. R = Raizqt
  4. N = Nugiyen
  5. Z = ZiggyD
  6. C = Chris Wilson
  8. T - Chris can you say what your goal is for this.
  9. C - Community expecting a lot from this. I want to empahise here that you guys can ask whatever questions you want I'll try my best to answer, no support people here I'm pretty much by myself here. For some gameplay questions I'll have to give the answer of I don't know but I've talked to team members before hand. We're pretty much prepared for all the questions. We're talking to other content creators as well, got Zizarin lined up for sometime next week maybe. I'll be pretty candid with this stuff, normally we'll wait for 3.16 but I don't want to wait that long and I'll be telling you changes we'll be making in 3.16 Obviously changes will be iterated on by accounced.
  10. T - Is the intention going forward to keep nerfing the game?
  11. C - Miscommunicion there. We're going to make the Acts a bit more difficult. From watching streamers on the day they played through Act 1 and liked it. Their problems were with things like mana changes. Working on Act 2 and 3. Nerfs like trigger gems and movement skill changes - we tried to do as many of these changes in one go. We don't have any more on this list at the moment. In 3.16 one tiny tweak to fortify and everything else is a buff. Done changes to buy room for power creep. This isn't the first of many volleys. We don't have a pile more nerfs like the 3.15 ones. When the community misunderstood this we didn't jump in and correct them. Partly because we're scared of talking to the community at the moment and partly because we've been busy improving expedition.
  12. R - Tweak to fortify - will it still be in the game?
  13. C - Intention of the tweak is to make sure it's used by melee characters and not everyone. In D3 melee classes have general damage reduction but we've wanted to make that a skill.
  14. T - You said community misunderstood the marketing. I think the marketing was very misleading.
  15. C - Communication is a two way street. It's difficult because when I rewatch the livestream I don't disagree with anything I said. We do want to continue to improve the challenge and make monsters more challenging and scary. The zooming isn't really going away, sure there's movement skill changes that. Looking POE2 for example people are worried because they've seen like level 16 gameplay, you're not really zoomy at that stage and it's designed to showcase gameplay mechanics. So we showed some Act 2 footage and it was reasonably slow so people said this is what maps will be like. Maps will still be zoomy as it's a power fantasy. It'll be marginally less zoomy than currently but it'll still be very fast gameplay where you kill packs of monsters at a time. I agree for marketing for 3.15, it's mostly the cases where you don't get to engage with monsters. Our ideal situation, the white monster gives off half an attack, blue monsters get off an attack.
  16. O - Taking a step back a few concepts. You mentioned all the nerfs coming in 3.15 you wanted them all together. Do you think this was a sucessful approach?
  17. C - In hindsight I'm glad it was locaised to one release. We felt doing a bunch of stuff at once and then rebalance around it. This is a new game, try it out isn't something you want to do 4 times a year. Some of the nerfs we did was wrong. We did not like the result of the flask and mana changes. Yesterday had a meeting - we screwed up on several fronts of these changes. Talks of reverting flasks to piano flasks but we have a better solution that I'm free to talk abnout. Apologise for mana changes as it was a mistake. There were changes there that shouldn't have been made in the first place. Bit of a culture of putting more nerfs in as we were already doing a bunch which caused it to be a bit careless.
  18. N - Question about mana stuff in 3.16. Can we then expect certain builds that aren't functioning right now due to mana changes. Going to make broad sweep on mana changes?
  19. C - State game was in before whilst easier still wasn't perfect. Pre 3.15 mana wasn't in a perfect state. 3.15 changes were relatively agressive and weren't tested fully on builds. If there are builds that don't work but should then we'll look at them. While I don't know any upcoming mana changes still early.
  20. T - Just to double back as little back before we talk about flask. When we talk about speed of the game, are you trying to slow down PoE and do you want it to be a slower game?
  21. C - We have a problem with someone entering a screen of monsters and them being dead before they got there. Lets say it's running at 1500% and we want to run at 800%. We don't want them to fight each pack one at a time. I don't know, should we make footage of maps showing how fast we want it to be? We just want there to be a game there. We don't plan tto make any further changes at this time.
  22. Z - Good idea to set expectation of where we want to the game to go and why it's fun.
  23. R - You guys could stream or record a video of this kind of stuff.
  24. C - Whatever it takes to reassure people. Difficult thing with recent anger of players is they're people who likes the game and they want the game to be a game they want to enjoy. Our goal is the same. Feedback internally is mostly people agreeing with the feedback. We have stumbled a bit on 3.15 with goal of providing a better game. 10 year game and power creep is something we need to combat.
  25. T - Reason why I wanted to double back. One of main frustration is GGG says one thing and does another. Why do league mechanics have timers/force playuers to go fast.
  26. C - Interesting thing we've had a chat about. Want to challenge people to want to make better builds. If you design leagues where performing better has no benefit then people won't want to improve their characters as much. This doesn't mean we need to have timers everywhere, Expedition doesn't have timers for example. Delirium the more powerful you are the more monsters you kill and more loot you get.
  27. T - Would it not be safe to say that playing fast is already its own reward? Do you need to further emphaise that?
  28. C - It is a fair point, also aspect of for Incursion for example a specific goal you want to achieve in a time. It doesn't let powerful characters double dip. We'll find an appropriate use for them in the future. Whenever we make a decision is this a speed meta kind of thing.
  29. T - The other big thing I hear a lot. Bit frustration with players is they want to play tankier builds. Feels like if not intentionally pushing going fast and playing squishier builds.
  30. C - That's interesting, the problem sorts itself out in HC. Defences are a big topic internally, always a give and take in player power and defence. Guides a lot of balance decisions. In future (be careful) we're trying to make easier defensive options available for more characters so people can invest if wanted. we're not 100% happy with state of defences.
  31. T - You teased a bit on flasks. What about current state on flasks and plans are?
  32. C - We weren't happy with flask piano for. Intention was to try and reduce the RSI stuff and overall power of flasks. People aren't too concerned with power but the other changes fell flat. There's been a conversation with suggested imrpovement to flask. Best to look up on issue tracker and list what they want to change. First changes with enkindling orbs buffing them as high as they can go. Next thing complete revist of all mods on flasks. Two mod pools, first pool for proactive on utility and second on reactive on life and mana flasks. Life mana and hybrid are reactive, utility are reactive. Add tiering to mods so you get higher levels of mods in higher contents. Adreneline gives MS during flask effect, 4 tiers. But when on Life/Mana flask it gives onslaught for X seconds on use. Want to add crafting mods for flask suffixes on helena crafting. Want to review of belt mods. Look at unique jewel buffs. Flask focused unqiues. Your flasks are always in effect - looking at for unique. There's a bunch of stuff, they're worried about unique flasks. Something I suspect that is quite carefully reviewed. General system of mod on flasks like curse removal and dousing. Trying to get back a lot of what was good before.
  33. N - You want to combat RSI is one of the point. But what you're doing is not really doing that. PoE has ever since inception has problem where speed = how fast you kill monsters. Flasks = how many monsters you kill. Zoomer speed = always charged. We're back to flask pianoing again already. How do you address flask piano vs killing monsters. Constant push to kill next pack.
  34. C - Yup, that was exactly bought it. Pressing the flask buttons isn't a problem, hammering them is. Instilling orbs still exist, there's still a degree of pushing buttons that is removed. A lot of reason why this is a problem is due to power of unique flasks and will continue to be reviewed. I believe the resounding direction is that you want to have these effects up moderately permanently. What we would normally do is make a news post, you can definitely expect significant flask changes. Don't want to say this a week before release, want to make this a dialogue. One of the points I want to make is Chris doesn't do everything. There's literally 500 things going on and I can't follow it all. I'm happy to be face of game and take flack when it goes wrong but I don't make all decisions. In some cases I've not heard of things because it's getting announced. Sometimes we screw up and try and fix it. In case of flask stuff here, they've considered what you're talking about but I don't know exactly what their response is. We'll do a news post with changes when it's more developed and get feedback.
  35. Z - Flask charge cooldown and charge regen over time. Have you explored any of that?
  36. C - That was also mentioned, the thing that I don't think people have a problem with flask generation internally. Main thing people worried about is effects on flasks. Unique flasks especially. in other ARPGs flasks give you more health and that's it. So we have this thign where you get masses of power from flask so charge generation ties into that. Changes in 3.15 were somewhat of a failure.
  37. Z - Pathfinder felt so good this league but others didn't due to flasks.
  38. R - I just wanted to ask. All these things sounded insanely good until tiers. I think big problem with flask is people couldn't get good rolls on flasks. Same with mana, if build needed mana on gear and you didn't get it build didn't work. Is tiers going to be same thing but better or different functionallity.
  39. C - Tier is like life, getting 5 life early on and more later. Flasks never had tiers of mods, every other type of mod has tiers. Using that design space to make mods more useful. That is tiered to 4 tiers in the current design, up to 3x more powerful in highest tier.Won't be a problem making flasks that are good. Mistake having orbs so tricky to apply mod you want.
  40. O - I think the one thing have to be careful of with tiers. Core defensive layers in a build that a character relies on are not locked behind a tier of content you can't access. I think that's what flasks were papering over throughout PoE and one of larger pain points.
  41. C - Ailments - People using flasks to get immunity to ailments. Team want to bring back future ailment mitigation to skill (purity), more to pantheons. Ignite and poison should be high reduced effect. Add mitigation to bleed to steel skin. corrupted implicits to items for it. Conc ground reduced effect of curses. Add to jewel mods. Buffing some mods on items (abyss jewels). Crafting options for mitigating them. Avoidance on all shields. Cannot be frozen for brine king. This is WIP but ailmenets throughout the game.
  42. Z - This is what people expected and wanted this patch when you said we'd get more ways to deal with it.
  43. T - Is the goal to make it like resists?
  44. C - Chose what's imporant to your build so you don';t need them all. Putting it on pantheons means you can easily change it.
  45. N - 3.15 why it's so imporant. When you make overall changes, in future when you can huge changes again. But when you are making these great changes it's so imporant tools you are removing from the game are available immediately. Freeze is dangerous. Quick note back to flask before, good thing adding this to flasks. Flasks on slower builds you lack the ability to maintain them. How do you make flasks that faster builds have avialble when you need them and available to slower builds?
  46. C - FAir enough, I'll make sure team discuss that.
  47. T - A lot of this comes down to again, comes to lack of context and that's been one of the big pain points for 3.15. Players not understanding what the vision is. Roadmap is a bit esxtreme but this is what plan is right now and future plan.
  48. C - Tricky thing is context we didn't explain to people properly. Peopel want to know we're not crazy talk about it here, was going to save for 3.16 announcement. This is something I imagined myself writing a livestream speech for. I feel politically announcing this at the moment is quite negative. This is a bit of a rant. I want to emphaise what I'm talking about is completely optional. This is likely to be private league mod like SSF you can turn on. The backstory is, early on in 3.15 design. We were doing quite a review of other action RPGs and looking at itemisation. We care about progression of items and ifficulty. We realise one thing PoE has lost is item upgrades mattering a lot. Do league content get rare items equip them and you're ahead of the curve. You don't care about magic items. This continues throughout the game, have access to a lot of powerful stuff. We don't want to interfere with that. Play D1 and D2 very hardcore experiences. Those items in those games, blue items can feel good. Concept of having a mode where itemisation is entirely different to what you know at the moment. Where getting through Act 1 is challenging, getting to maps is difficult for most players due to item scarcity. You find a rare and you say "yes". The currency is so limited in this potential mode the ability to add mod to items is a great thing. We've been experimenting with this, this is something that's incredibly devicisve. There will be people watching this who like the idea of item upgrades being a big deal. So we've been playing interally (hard mode), it's brutally difficult. We're intiially talking about this, put it as a private league mod but the thing is people started hearing about this they wanted it as an alpha server. We wanted there an ability to be an ultimate mode. We've been experimenting with it and it's a lot of fun. It's a silly vanity mode and it's a lot of fun to play. How does this effect on 3.15? We started work on this with 3.15, this is alongside PoE2 is we're trying to review game systems. This is why we're screwing around with flasks, trying to get it right for PoE2. If we nerf stuff in PoE1 people are going to quite, we should use hard mode as experiment for doing nerf. So people who want to nerfs can play hard mode. As we're making changes for hard mode we realise this is better so lets just do that for 3.15. So they started nerfs on other nerfs. For many of the nerfs realised it's better for the game and belived this is the way to go. Stuff of 3.15 was pulled out as things we thought were safe. Long Story short, problem is Chris' vision for the game is terrible. Having hard mode as a vanity thing is a politically bad thing to announce. It's barely any items and haven't go to maps successfully. So we're just throwing it out there as a thing that'll probably be there in 3.16 as an alternate mode. It's brutal and there's no items. The level of destruction to the item system, no master crafting. You can't fix your items easily. Influenced work differently, veiled items gone. The intention here is not a precursor to changes for main game. That's what's going on in the background. There's the zoomy players and people who want a challenge.
  49. T - Something I want to ask. Something that excites me as a player. With Royale and hard mode will be splitting dev time.
  50. C - i have weekends I spend on this, it requires very little dev time. What hard mode is in a nutshell is number changes and turning systems off. Even if a thing we make and release still incredible value to the company. Wouldn't wrroy abouyt dev time split.
  51. R - As awesome as mode sounds, you talked about direction of the core game. Players were killing mods off screen, that's part of the fun of PoE and why they play it.
  52. C - So the intention is not to let the mainline go completely to the dogs. We don't want it so you can finish a map in 4 seconds. I understand people have fun killing monsters off screen. Changes in 3.15 only singificant nerfs and not more.
  53. O - I would agree to some extent, I would disagree on specifics of it. There are still builds that are blowing up a screen of monsters. But the vast amount of builds got hit and some hit much much harder to point where they're unplayable at "competitive" setting.
  54. Z - Players the gravitating to fewer builds or building their characters on less and less defences.
  55. C - Lets fix this, team are aware of it. We want to make sure main game is state we're happy with. Walking back some changes we've talked about.
  56. N - What you're saying with hard mode is that you want to take is in the future the normal game is less likely to be hit with "game is a little fast now" as you have the other mode.
  57. C - More for people who want harder mode to exist as currently doesn't in PoE. Treat main PoE as PoE. It does mean we don't need current PoE to be the type of game for multiple people.
  58. T - Would hard mode would be HC only?
  59. C - It's a flag that works with all leagues. So can have SSF, HC or SC.
  60. R - Don't you think something like this opens opporunity to make a mode for the zoomers? Do you think people will ask for that?
  61. C - We've come to realise over time that. It is cool there's content I can't get to, I feel that's nice including mainline stuff. Something we'll introduce something like Elder, shaper or sirus. and over time people get used to it. In current version of the game you can't kill those bosses without a bunch of work. Mainline PoE is normall-ish player has ability to play through content that they can see it. This allows us to channel that you'll never get to shaper to be in hard mode.
  62. R - A harvest mode for instant? And they want that now? You gave this to HC players why not give that to SC players?
  63. C - We had other problems with harvest crafting. Hard mode allows us to be slightly more liberal with main PoE. This is frustrating because currently have a system where items range from 1-10. Find items around the middle where there's always exciting upgrades. In HM you find items way at the bad end of the scale. Harvest was giving you 10 items. Main game needs to be fun with upgrades too.
  64. R - That's not how players play the game. Harvest enabled players to get the items they wanted themselves without buying them. Players don't currently play enough to get currency to buy the items they want.
  65. C - Item decluttering is still something we're working on. Items dropping being bad is a problem we're trying to solve. Learning from hard mode is helping.
  66. Z - From SC juices side of things, aspiration content. Saw big toning down of delving, delirium map farming, seems at odds with aspirational content.
  67. C - Aspirational content we're talking about really hard content that rewards really well to work towards. Deep delving was basically bugged and mathd didn't work at high levels and we fixed it which turned into a nerf. I have stuf fot talk about with delve. Delirium weren't intended people to fracture the perfect map forever. Very desierable to play the same map over and over. It did highlight that peopel wanted content like that. In line with the concept aspirational content could be greater versions. Early notes. Dropping more delirum orbs, 5-10 waves extra on sim, 5-4 legion more rewarding. Make deep delve quite distance, more rewarding around 1500 but more difficult. Make is so T16 maps so catchup mechanic puts you deeper in delve so you don't need to. UJber domain of timeless conflict. Uber blight maps. All in discussion and might not be in game. Talking about Ultimatum going core and maybe more waves. General monster balance throughout the game, rare mob mods etc. New tier of breachstones above pure. The content iself is fairly straight forward (number balanace). 3.17 is next end game expansion (January). BNut these types of aspriational end games, no reason why some of these can't be in 3.16. Firmly believe why items need to be attractive to get is content you can't do.
  68. O - My one concern to adding super duper uber modes to stuff. Just after a swath of nerf that makes a bunch of builds less viable. It's going to constrict the top end of SC trade meta even more than we've ever seen it.
  69. C - You're compeltely right. What do players want, they want build diversity and a way to do that is to have ceiling low.
  70. T - all souneds really positive. Chris is just going to be on and appease people, promises that aren't delivered upon.
  71. C - I regret times where we've promised stuff and not delivered it. It is possible for us to change our mind. We're excited about the content we're talking about here. I expect we're going to see some of this stuff come as team are very excited about this.
  72. R - Octavian asked about builds specifically. Player accessibility. Do you want this to be top to 1% juicers or the average players or people who really play the game and the items trickle down?
  73. C - One thing we learnt before we had the map system we had Maelstrom of chaos. This was stuff that happened after 4th act. Problem we found then players would watch streamers who went to the 20th area and the streamers would do okay there. Players would take their character and try and do 20th level and die and complain it's too hard. Should there be an economic cost to running good content? In terms of accessibility the most rewarding most difficult content is hard to access. If random player wants to play top tier content, need to get there and afford it. We don't want accessibility to be a problem.
  74. T - A lot of that goes into reward structure of leagues. Big compltain with big league when main draw is league uniques. This league boils down to does this give me currency?
  75. C - Next league will only have good uniques. Goes into chase items, we want uniques that people want. If league doesn't have compelling uniques then down to how much currency it gives.
  76. R - Boils down to accessibility. I don't care how good hateforge is, I'm not going to have it. Do you plan on making these things that is very strong for a league then nerfed.
  77. C - I dont' want to nerf uniques. I don't want something to be good then nerf it later. Good thing you want hateforge as a chase item.
  78. N - Tie back to Super Duper mode. In PoE things get compared Apples to Apples. Delirium was best comparison to anything in terms of raw currency. You've showered us with all other league mechanics. If you're adding these super duper mods with the only intent to be showering you with more currency. Pure breaches had guranteed of certain uniques and upside of more XP, wasn't just about currency. Dilutting cost of item from floor with maps dropping 1000s of items. Important to have trickle up as it is trickle down.
  79. C - You're completely right. Have the rewards mariginally better and have certain rewards from it. Unique rewards will make it take more time, not sure what team is intending with rewards.
  80. Z - Mention importance of chase items why do you think people are less excited about.
  81. C - What do people mean about more chase items? There's same number of chase items as existed before. Ziz talks about deterministic-ish drops from bosses. The reason I'm playing this game is he might drop a mirror or a headhunter. We definitely want there to be these chase items. We want drop pool to be compelling. Core drop pool, going to put more stuff in it. Any monster could drop something very valuable. If by chase items players want a different thing then let us know.
  82. Z - Why were more uniques moved from specific mechanics or bosses? Not stuff like headhunter, stuff from specific bosses. Like shaper guardian uniques.
  83. C - I was discussing with team yesterday, the people talking to weren't the people talking to uniques around. Never got a clear answer. That's a thing that has confused a few peopel and may need to be fixed. We would leave uniques on specific bosses. That was the kind of thign that meant to be used, maybe a bit of an overreach or a good plan behind it.
  84. R - What is the problem with bosses dropping good uniques? Wouldn't it be better bosses drop good stuff?
  85. C - If the answer is make better uniques then we're trying. It's implitically a power creep thing. Is shavs still powerful? Why would you be happy for it to be drop from a boss?
  86. Z - For it to be a chase item you need to be able to farm it.
  87. O - Game has moved away from pack away from pack I kill could drop a mirror. League moved to putting loot in boxes. You're not really excited about what monsters are going to drop, thinking of icons on minimap and going for that.
  88. C - Probably going to move away from boxes with icons over them. Want more monsters to be rewarding. Exactly what Hard mode is really fasinating as in that mode you just drop the normal drop pool from everything. Adding rarity to encounter makes it exciting. Players appreciate every rare you can get.
  89. T - On point of chase, there's often of element with div cards being shuffled around without a mention of it.
  90. C - That is a good point, normally we don't talk about item drop rates. We should talk about item drop locations. I'll check into that.
  91. Z - We've seen a lot of nerfs over time ot a lot of chase drops like shaper's swords. The intent is these outclassing all rares and now they don't meet minimal viablity standards.
  92. C - Maybe they need a buff pass.
  93. T - Big compltains of current state of the game is grind in atlas and maven system.
  94. C - The team agree and we have some changes. Preface this is 3.17 will fix this, we'll look at system and see what's good. Peopel angry now and we have changes for 3.16 - preliminary: Reduce atlas to 4 regions instead of 8, far less watchstones and progress to sirus is shorter. 100 maps instead of 160. Shuffle those so every time we shuffle some maps go in and out. Bonuses will be increased to compensate for this. 16 conq instead of 32 to finish atlas. Should mean grind is significantlly reduced without cutting journey out.
  95. Z - 3.17 we're going to continue going to make awesome stuff.
  96. T - 4 region, going to impact how atlas passive work.
  97. C - Don't know exact plan and we'll make sure to compensate it. Nothign is inteded to be a nerf.
  98. O - Bigger trees?
  99. C - Some stuff is redundant across multiple tree. Up in the air still, hot off the presses. This is why we've not been addressing the fire here as we've been working on fixing stuff.
  100. R - When it comes to player renention, people say purposely boring shitty and long as it takes forever. You'd only do things like this as want player retention.
  101. C - We try very hard to make things fun. If you double length of novel will more people spend time reading book? If it gets boring it's because we've screwed up not badly thought out plan.
  102. T - Player Retention, what is the realistic impact of massive drop off we saw this league.
  103. C - When we released Delve we had drop off but didn't know why and still don't. This one was down for good reason. I want to bring up a couple of points. Ultimatum didn't do a good job retaining players so we were already down. Teaser we did was not hypey and quite poor. Spent 50% of time in the livestream justifying the nerfs. So going into the league it was exciting. Would rather spend 100% of time in the livestream showing the exciting stuff. A lot of mistakes were made there caused launch not to have many players.
  104. T - When it comes to finance of it where does the money actually go in terms of tencent and marketing.
  105. C - Any money that's left over that isn't kept in the company goes to shareholders. That hasn't changed. So nothing changed with Tencent as it'll still be the same. Tencent has no desire to control direction of the game.
  106. Z - Clicking! The manifesto explanation talking about artifacts missing the mark. The conclusions that need they need to be picked up or tradable and not. Reward from talking to NPCs and not artifacts themselves.
  107. C - I'd argued we wante dto have different artefacts so you'd interact with all NPCs. Generally prefer stuff to be tradable as we like there being an economy. Want people to chose and pick content they like and run that. We reduced drop rate of splinters in development and made them bigger stacks. Feedback from QA was chests didn't give any rewards.
  108. Z - Can have no chests as part of that. Can still achieve same result without clicking by having auto pickup.
  109. C - Auto pickup is slippery slope. We're reviewing our splinter policy. We're not going to put splinters in future leagues unless we have good reason. Have threshold for splinters that are worth. If that's like azurite or other ways of tracking stuff. This lets us review past league. There's a bunch of small changes for reading stuff from future thing. Plan to merge drops that can be merged together, breach splinters, harbinger shards etc. Whenever a loot sprial occurs for it to automatically go through the spiral and automatically merge the currency together! We will have to look what happens in a party. couple of other issue, something we're discussing (hypothetical). Having bands for appropriate sizes of currency items drop. Wisdom scrolls drop frequently, a waste to pick them up in maps. Hypothosis at certain bands sizes of wisdom scrolls gets larger but drop less often (e.g. stack of 10 but drop 1/10 as often). Could mean in a breach taht you get several splinters you get a stack of them every few breaches. Maybe chance orbs drop 2 per stack to gradually reduce number of clicks.
  110. Z - Sounds like a conession between what I want and what you want. Like pickup range, how far characters run to pick stuff up.
  111. C - We're happy with pickup range stuff. If we resolve other problems people won't complain about it so much. We have decluttering plans for Path of Exile. Won't have sea of items that are incredibly worthless. One thing we're discussing is not rendering filtered items.
  112. Z - Explain a bit more about the pickup range thing. It's like if melee had 1/10 of the range it has now and how frustrating it is.
  113. C - We want players to be at the item to pick up the item. For players point of view only better for it to be higher. We just have to be very careful as all we'll here is very bigger. Not saying we won't increase it just have to be careful and want to solve other problems first.
  114. N - splinters want to consolidate it. When you click something and see nothing but a stack dropping it's not very exciting. Any time you get a splinter you've already made decision to do that content to get that splinter so you expect that. Having showers of thigns is just exciting and you're taking that away.
  115. C - With regards to clicking the system we're talking about it sone click to get all the splinters. We have problems with vacuuming. This approach will reduce clicking.
  116. R - Why now? For the longest time you've been talking about weight and suddenly you're taking a different stance. Is this something you're willing to commit to or will we have this conversation 3 weeks into a new league?
  117. C - We believe in item weight which is why we're making this change to make them heavier. If we were switching to auto looting it'd be a concession. You'll walways have to click on individual items. There's no decision with Expedition, you'll always pick them up and stash them. We'll just design it better in the future.
  118. O - Since admission Expedition that step too far. Any changes in course of the league like chests automatically opening?
  119. C - I'll have a chat to the team about that, nothing yet that we're happy to do.
  120. R - Many games have QoL features controlled by players. Can you clarify why this isn't an option by PoE as display of buffs/debuffs leave a lot to be desired. UI stuff.
  121. C - You're right that big monitors it's hard to keep track of life and mana at same time. We want it to be UI we control. We want to provide an experience is good that players don't want to think about. It's something we want to de-old. Changing how the UI works is not easy work and a lot of that is what we're thinking about in PoE2. Doesn't mean have to wait for PoE2 for changes. Testing PoV QA already struggling with amount of things there is to test and adding custom UIs will make that harder. Branding, making sure POE looks like POE and not different for every player. Mockups for crazy UI for PoE2 that shows experiementation.
  122. T - With consoles saw more modern UI, why could we not work something more towards UI.
  123. C - Working towards bringing that to controller experience on PC. Stuff we want to change onc onsole UI going forward. Unification dream where you can plug a controller in and do couch co-op. People playing on K+M and someone on controller etc.
  124. T - QoL is something we've talked about. Accessibility like colourblind options.
  125. C - I need a colourblind who can't tell difference between gem colours to send me an email so we can try things. There must be something we've done wrong for gems. We'll sort it out and need to speak to someone who is colourblind more than people in our office.
  126. N - Since you make fortify only for melee, where does that leave casters. Self casting right now is bad.
  127. C - The team is very unhappy with fortify being used by everyone. I don't even have notes on this one. Remembering stuff discussed about. Intention of fortify change, size of fortify buff based on how much melee damage you're taking. If that means we need to provide another way for casters to get benefits then hopefully we're looking at.
  128. R - That sounds like the sort of issue with right now.
  129. C - I'll let the team who work on this work that out as don't want to speculate on this. We'll make sure there's conversations with community early so we can get feedback.
  130. Z - Buying equipable items, I don't mind that 99% of the time it works pretty well. However, we were talking about making sure things were tadable so have access to base content. A lot of that talks about mass trading for scarabs and currency etc. Have to message 20-25 people to get a response. Some sort of trade system/AH thing for exclusively consumable goods.
  131. C - I understand the concern. I wonder if there's ecosystem changes we can make that make it so you don't have to message so many people. AH stuff is a lot of work. I wonder if changes to trade site will be enough. I don't have news there but I'll take it back to the team and we'll try and make it less frustrating. Some ideas that they've been discussed.
  132. T - On same point, How would you respond to common thing that trade system is held up by bots. You need bots for trade.
  133. Z - Best trades are with bots.
  134. O - Might even be worse, 50% of trades are with a bot in HC.
  135. C - Haven't noticed players noticing when we ban the bots. What we do do is ruin RMTers by removing their entire network. It is a sad thing, we don't want people botting the game in any form.
  136. T - Another big aspect of 3.15 is changes to mobility gems which is a really big point for really players. Makes people who go fast worse, and slower players worse.
  137. C - It hasn't come up as a thing we've had big discussion on. Either because everyone is happy or that it still needs to be discussed. Mobility is probably still in an easier place than I'd like it to be (Doesn't mean it's going to be nerfed).
  138. T - As a follow on. In a situation where lead balance guys say we want to nerf something and you say no doesn't that mean there's a big disconnect between players and GGG.
  139. C - Reasons why we decline nerfs is might not be in line with vision. Philosophical stuff, people want HH not to be an autowin button, it's a bit silly getting a headhunter and everything gets easier but that's a good thing. We need more things like that in the game that are hard to get. when people say goldrim is very good for levelling and it's too common we should make it rarer - No, it's a good thing it's common and people use it. SEcond reason is production, nerfs take time and testing so we have to limit the number we do. Even if nerf sounds good have to say no. Also politically where nerfing things is bad for the game like we've learnt where that line is now with 3.15. Also don't like doing mid-league nerfs. This league had been more forward with the changes, we try and avoid mid league buffs as well. But we knew we had to come out of the gate with some.
  140. T - How could absolutiton be shipping in the state where it needed 400% buff.
  141. C - Testers thought it was in a good place. Maybe something changed at some point after it was tested. Probably a problem in the process somewhere.
  142. T - Is his a management issue with handling with QA or QA failing?
  143. C - Not a QA issue, they're doing a good job. It's on us for not making sure enough boxes were checked. I'm now being told a lot of QA members said it was bad so we need to find out why that didn't reach. All to do with hectic schedule we have and too much going on and these are consequences of that. Maybe need to look into how we do things like Alpha. If Alpha testers could please stop leaking stuff so maybe we can put Alpha earlier. We're stuck in bad situation with alpha test as want more community feedback.
  144. O - Does that not then logically proceed that if Alpha is in that gridlocked state that you can't properly test mean scope reduction or longer dev cycles?
  145. C - Scope reduction is definitely the way to go here. I don't want to limit expansions down to just be tiny. 3.16 is one of those carefully controlled scope ones where we know exactly what we want to delivery. The fun stuff that people want to sneak in will be less present in it. I feel corporate stuff stifles creatively and don't want to make it too regimented.
  146. R - Want to clarify - could you talk more about process of these things. Talk about can't release patch notes earlier as days before release still balancing stuff. What state are QA testing things in? do they actually get to play the release version or all these changes still missing?
  147. C - The changes are certainlly done over time. The changes they're testing at the moment for 3.16 are largerly for 3.15. If at the last minute oyu make a bnunch of mana changes that means the things you've tested are unchanged. There's a lot of stuff in poe that has to work together but there'll cocasionally be problems. I think we can be more intelligent about it and getting people trained out for better processes takes time. It's something the company has to evolve at.
  148. T - If there's very clearly miscommunication issue within office. Struggling to manage all differnt plates with current league management, next league, PoE2 and adding Royale and HM making that even more complex?
  149. C - Royale was easy to test just had 100 person play test. Whole process took 1 hour out of the week then changes were made. As for hard mode it's been done entirely seperately, being treated as a beta for a long time. Balance doesn't really matter as not going to have acceess to skill as going to be very hard to see some of the content which is what makes it special.
  150. Z - People love RoG and harvest crafting and deterministic crafting in PoE. It lets them play more build and engage with more content in game. Also ownership of gear as yhou progress your gear over time instead of buying it or putting a new item on.
  151. C - We like there being a degree of deterministic crafting but don't want them being the best items in the game. Harvest was somewhat intentional experiment, what would PoE be like with largerly deterministic crafting? A lot of people are upset as a lot of people don't like that we removed it.
  152. N - Do you think that putting this type of crafting in a league specific crafting was a good idea? Because Hravest is such a universally good way everyone wanted to do it. Would it be better with it being more core like a currency?
  153. C - I didn't regret that we did harvest as a league. What I regret is making it core without too many changes. Becasuse we signalled it was there forever then took it away was a problem. Moving crafts away from deep delve elsewhere. Multiple crafted mods behind pale council fight.
  154. R - Opened discussion on clarifying stances on things. What to GGG is a league? In past bite size thing you'd do for 3 months, almost testing something that might be in the game in some other way. Now people from the get go treat it as a core feature.
  155. C - They're meant to be experiements. For Harvest we then put it in the core game and said it's a core feature, that's out mistake. If we just had it as a league players would have understood when we took it away.
  156. R - Do you regret leagues like harvest?
  157. C - We learnt a lot from it. We're going to be doing these going forward and important for us to learn for the long term.
  158. O - The current state of harvest, do you think it's an acceptable place for it to be. With augments still technically in the game but obscenelly rare as they are.
  159. C - I'm Okay with that in principal. I'm fine with it in the main game, won't be like that in hard mode. The ones that do chaos and alch do both now like essences. With veiled mods - for most of the veiled mods they'll unlock immediately after being unlocked once, some stronger ones might take multiple but now might unlokc all tiers at once.
  160. T - Where are limits with leagues being experiemental? A lot of the old mechanics that would have been heralled as PoE at its core is now seen as something that needs to be fixed and removed.
  161. C - Easy for us to see where the line is but harder to communicate that for players. Hard to say what's an expoit and what's not. If it crosses the line then we'll try and fix it. In expedition have a button that can turn off a specific NPC without a patch. Have a kill switch to quickly turn things off if exploit is found.
  162. Everyone - Turn off rog, press the button.
  163. Z - Tralked about best items not being produced by deterministic crafting.
  164. C - If you get items through crafting then why kill monsters? We're going to fix the game so you kill monsters for items.
  165. O - I think that's the core of the problem now. Players have a road to good items which is the crafting system. But there's not really a good path there otherwise. Players felt rug pulled under them with crafting changes removed.
  166. C - Going to take some work to get things in a good state. Not trying to use PoE2 as an excuse for things not being fixed. We would rather take risks now so once PoE2 comes out it's balanced how players are expecting it to be.
  167. Z - Thoughts on crafting be more accessible for newer players. Think rog is a good way to get into crafting.
  168. C - The nice thing about Rog with the changes to highlight prefies suffixes and levels and stuff will help people learn. We'll try and introduce good crafting that is easily explainable. We want to have a step back and look at how people are acquiring items from the ground and for bosses and have a wide range of methods for people to get stuff.
  169. N - How do you commuicate to the player that something is a better upgrade to them? With crafting if I have physical damage on a weapon and want to upgrade it I want to know how do I get there? Encyclopedia in a game listing possible mods and showing what you can get?
  170. C - I understand what you mean. Maybe we need to do something like that, click a mod on an item and show what prefixes are in the pool etc. Currently it's bit intentionally obtuse, a reward for people who are smart and figure it out. It's completely a black box to a lot of player and don't know where to start. Things like master crafting is helpful but you don't know if there's a better option like exalting on a mod.
  171. T - PoE2 - How much of POE2 is down so far. Realistic for players to have it by 2024?
  172. C - Act 1 is 90% complete, work done all most acts. Act 2 it's 75% complete with later acts being started. Doesn't sound like a lot but had to work on setting standards and things in place and now gotten to full production mode. Plan to add 100 artists over the next few months. Will we see PoE before 2024 - are expectation is yes.
  173. T - Main limiting factor at the moment is artists?
  174. C - If we had 20-30 applications today we'd be very happy. We do have recruting plans underway, we want to work with world class people.
  175. T - Another big thing that's come up a lot. PoE2 is going to solve a lot of problems with POE1.
  176. C - Our intention is yes. We have ability to redo things and do it correctly second time around. Skill system for example. So much nicer using the skill gems system, we feel is a complete improvement over POE1. Careful not to screw things up, don't want things being weird on POE2 launch day. That's why we believe we're solinv gall the problems and can see what works in POE1 and what issues exist in it currently.
  177. T - Big desire with POE is revitalise the levelling process. A lot of complaints of people not liking doing acts over again?
  178. C - There's a few topics here. POE2 storyling is shorter than POE1 storyline. It's more fun, the things you're doing are a lot more fun. Part 2 in POE1 is rehashed versions of act 1-5. In addition to this we're aware of issue with players want to get to end game. POE2 is more streamlined less going all over the place like in act 3. Will have side things that will make each playthrough feel different.
  179. R - In past you said you expect POE2 complain to be similar time as POE1 campaign.
  180. C - Consdiering here is want players to be same level when they complete campaign. Likely to be quicker to beat POE2 campaign but they're roughly similar in terms of character progression.
  181. Z - The people who feel like they'll never feel like they'll be into campaigns how good they've made it.
  182. C - At the moment just trying to make campaign as good as we can then admitting it's bad. Doing interesting things in campaign in POE2 that we've not talked about yet. Got to do things like the lab currently in POE1 which adds to length.
  183. T - How would you respond with the fact that these are problems that are effecting modern player base now that will be resolved in 3 years from now. Are we accepting there's no improvement before then?
  184. C - We can take the lessons that people want interesting content. We'll take these learnings into what we're doing with the POE2 campaign.
  185. T - A very common sentiment is people don't enjoy the acts and by making them more difficult making things people don't act slower.
  186. C - If the acts represent something that you can just run through is better than something that you actually have to play is sad. That's the direction we're going to be going in there.
  187. T - A lot of frustration was at its best in 3.13, 3.14. Relieved due to nto getting nerfs league after league.
  188. C - Whatever it was in 3.13 they loved we want to bring that back into the game and find out what they liked. want to take all things that were positive there and make sure they're in path of exile. In 3 months when 3.16 comes out we'll have this discussion again and if there's stuff we've talked about we'll need to see why that's not progressed.
  189. R - Why are wisdom scrolls a thing?
  190. C - Ideally players would enjoy finding rare items and looking at them. The client knows what the stats of the items are before you pick them up. If you do not have wisdom scrolls then filters can only show the good items. Important for weight of items and anticipation. System does not work well due to there being too many items. We have to solve itemisation and then assess if wisdom scrolls are needed.
  191. Z - you could just right click them, don't need to drop them ID'd.
  192. C - I appreciate the feedback, we'll keep examining it but at the moment we like wisdom scrolls.
  193. O - Does the item have the wisdom scroll need to be the avenue?
  194. T - 20,000 voices shouting aurabots at me.
  195. C - The whiteboard I can't show you has aurabots in quite large letters. A person using an aura is not a problem, if you personally chose to put on a lot of auras with reservsation that is fine. Problem is if a teammate is just using aura and everyone else is powered up by 10 times. Trying to make a push in 3.16 where that's not such an encouraged thing in a way that doesn't hurt auras. More options for supporting party members. One direction is to make parties more interesting.
  196. N - Aurastacking on rares. In PoE a lot of damage spikes, auras on rares and way you're creating leagues. In heist in ultimatum where aurastacking on mobs where things run away from you. When you fall behind it creates scenario where it's so crazy where you can't engage as it'll get you killed every time. Is this something you've thought about.
  197. C - We don't hink Rare mods are in a good place. Something that's moved from 3.16 to 3.17 is to redo all rare mods. Don't like monster mods stacking. We want to improve them. Currently not slated for 3.16, maybe other changes we can make in 3.16 for things like aura stacks. Like occasionally when mechanics overlap and make stuff hard.
  198. N - Main issue has been the league design. Heist was, I don't know what you were thinking. 20 rares coming together spawning repeatedly, same thing with ultimatum. Been a repeating pattern.
  199. C - Reviewed our last leagues and realised we were using rares too often. Expedition made it so there were less of them and will continue looking at that.
  200. O - Making league mechanics challenging. Expedition experiemtntal with immunities, do you think that was successful?
  201. C - If we said to you there's a big pillar in the map that said you can't kill monsters if you click it. Remnants are that.
  202. T - Expedition/Ultimatum. concerted effort with recent enemies to move away on death effects. Is this something that's a concious decision?
  203. C - We really want to be able to use them in intelligent ways. We're cutting back as players complained about them. Team want to do it well so can't promise we won't add them going forward.
  204. T - Would you be willing to talk about what you actually do at GGG.
  205. C - My responsibility is to make sure everything is done. If it's bad or misses release date that's on me. Occasionally I'll get to work on something in the game itself. Hard mode stuff working with other founders on outside of normal hours. Most part approving things and making sure he knows what's going on. Currently doing performance reviews. Work closes with Live ops team with what's been releasesd in versions of the games, looking at patch notes.
  206. R - Talked a lot about community perception. Can you think of anything where you looked at the feedback of somebody where you thought they were just wrong.
  207. C - There's always a seed of truth in it. It always starts as this wrong, then we have to put ourselves in their shoes and figure out why they think that. If the reason it's cool to hate on us at the moment then that's something we need to address.
  208. T - Since there does something to improve communication is done going forward. Reddit is dangerous spot, how to bridge that gap and improve communication?
  209. C - Reddit is tricky one, it upsets us to read it. I'm a person with strong mental health but I can't read the Reddit the last few months. It's cool I hire people and they read it for me. It's rough and I hate to think how it's hurting some developers who are more fragile. Every person there is a passionate player who wants the game to be better for them. It's dangerous for us to go Reddit is bad. Our plan here is to come on as many podcasts as we need to, I don't have a script and just sort out the issues. Ziz, Ghazzy and stuff want to have a chat. I like chatting with the community. The months I hide it gets bad, when I'm talking about things and explaining stuff is when things are at their best. I need to spend more time doing things like this going forward.
  210. N - Learned skills in POE. Stuff like mana skills or ignite builds. then for racers you had smoke mine which you'd learn to get the most out of. A whole subset of builds that are a little slower because they're on the wrong side of the tree they struggle. There's an inherent setup that people gravitate towards. When you rob of them of their learned skill then they feel even worse then the game is in the state it is. You talk about certain skills like Arc to alwayus be viable. Why did you go away from that.
  211. C - The intention is to tone things down. When we change something we said to go to QA to go build this and make sure it still works. The intention is to go from 150% to 110%. Minion characters are still good despite doing a lot of nerfs. Movement skills are still good and get you ahead. I've played smoke mine before and after the changes, it's slower now and still a big advantage over not using it. We're not trying to dfestroy builds, trying to fix the cases where skills are standout over all the rest.
  212. R - Does that mean you're okay with the incredible speeds that some people are getting with lightning warp?
  213. C - Might be best not to show me that video. In theory that sounds okay. If you're just fast through one random gem in your boots then we need to look at that.
  214. O - Everything I had going into this has been answered.
  215. Z - Stuff I want to circle back on in the future. Picking up items/pick up range etc. I'll look forward to trying proposed changes and seeing how I feel then.
  216. C - I should emphaise the stuff I mentioned might be spread out over a few leagues. This is on top of the stuff already in 3.16. There's a lead time here. The flask thing was an issue was because we released it without testing it fully.
  217. Z - You guys might have to sweep in and save the wiki at some point.
  218. C - Email me with the explanation of what's going on with the wiki.
  219. T - Frustration of that this came out of a hell fire.
  220. C - I'd be happy to do this frequently, even if things were going well.
  221. R - Why can monsters crit, it's not fair I don't like it!
  222. C - We can discuss this with the team. If you remove crits and make it a small damage range. You need spikes in there. The problem is crits aren't telegraphed or mitigatable in some way.
  223. R - If you could make it, your response to the ailment stuff was good. More options to not get rid if it costs me resources in other places.
  224. C - Yes. We ran a Royale test before league. We ran it the weekend after and less people played. The people who wanted to play couldn't get into games as they were seperated with gateways.
  225. Z - can we queue whiule playing the game?
  226. C - Weekend 2 - Royale is in a better players but due to fewer players people couldn't get into games. So big drop off. So combined those together so most of europe is together etc. Weekend 3 people learnt it was difficult to get a game so didn't bother trying. Weekend 4 please try, grouping of gateways should help.
  227. T - Gateway - South Africa, they've got no available gateway to them. Something I've seen for years and years.
  228. C - Haven't talked to server admins none of the providers we used have South African data centres. Queueing in the game client - I'd love that but it's difficult as queuing on different character to what you're playing. Going to be frustrating for you to be told a game is nearly ready then have it full. Royale player base is pretty low.
  229. Z - Whoever has been balancing Royale they're doing a good job.
  230. C - I'm just waiting for the stream delay and he'll smile in about 10 seconds.
  231. R - I can talk about cluster jewels. The PoE skill tree is the most prized jewel in the game. A fantastic addition that's gated behind delirium, you keep nerfing these cluster jewels and they're still so popular. They're built into making skill trees now. Why are they still so inaccessible and gated behind delirium.
  232. C - We have a problem here where people want to chase specific items from specific content and then want stuff moved into the core game.
  233. R - Implementation of flask currency is fixed. Bench crafting stuff is in the game. Cluster jewels are farmable but getting the right one is impossible. Doesn't really end up landing.
  234. C - Yup, it needs work. I completely agree.
  235. T - Going to MTX discussion. Lootboxes are predatory in nature. See someone like Quin or Ziz drop thousands and not complete a full set.
  236. C - Two things we do there are make everything through mystery boxes avialable on the shop later on. Secondly the customer support team work with big spenders and in some cases turn it off. There are players who enjoy this. I have mixed feelings here, gambling is a terrible thing. I personally enjoy spending $3 to get random things (MTG). Over time the legislation will decide if things are okay and make the decision easier. could be a major mistake just stopping loot boxes.
  237. T - Why not work towards making it more ethical rather than waiting for legislation?
  238. C - I agree, uinlocking it when you hit a certain threshold is something we've been discussing. It's hard to modify montisation things. Example with the $90 packs is something that has no downside it makes the public perception worse. There was a time in the past where $30 packs where better, this was an experiement or a mistake. Prompting discussion internally.
  239. T - Main thing from that is $30 pack is weapon effect + something, with $60 you'd get full armour set + missing stuff. Now it feels like you need to buy $90 pack to get the portal.
  240. C - $30 pack was $25 of points and one thing. Sometimes gave more than one thing and people now expect that. If the market says it isn't enough for that value we'll have to adapt for that.
  241. T - Recent trend of misrepresntative videos for MTX.
  242. C - To explain briefly. The support pack that had the lighting issue, the video guys found a place it looked cool and released that video, if you go there in the game it does look like that but doesn't elsewhere. Going forward will show in a variety of areas, was a mistake. With the exsanguinate one, we care a lot about performance so we go through and turn dynamic lighting and stuff. Dynamic culling was especially bad for performance and we had it turned off when we recorded the video. We are going to try and fix that and make it what people want. We put out a quick response that didn't cover anything.
  243. T - Skills keep being made that aren't useable in the game. E.g. storm rain (pure visuals).
  244. C - This is first I've heard that feedback myself. I think we probably do need to - here's the thing we have a process here where Bex brings feedback of everything and we read through it. This wasn't on those lists. It shouldn't need to go through me to get this fixed. Storm rain fixes in progress for a week or so and should be in the next patch.
  245. T - For duplicates boxes, why can't there be anything to reduce this?
  246. C - So the issue is that we did the math what would have to happen for people to turn in duplicates. You have to give someone a fraction of the thing they've already paid a fraction for. The ability to combine them together makes it so we seem evil no matter what we pick.
  247. T - you use MTG as an example. A thing with that is you can sell on your duplicate on. Can't do anything with 13 pairs of boots you have.
  248. C - Fair enough.
  249. O - The lighting for that photo isn't great. If i'm buying a handbag in a shop I can pick it up and look at it and turn it around and examine it. You don't have that advantage in the MTX store. Any hope of seeing try it before you buy it?
  250. C - It's difficult to implement this. Imagine if our MTX shop had similar items that'd probably make us a lot of money. We don't prioritise our monteisation stuff and maybe we should but I prefer working on the game.
  251. N - Given you are reliant on the loot boxes. And given you see the ethical problems with it. Laws are coming into more places and it could go away. If that comes out quicker than you expect are you looking at other methods of monteisation?
  252. C - We're not reliant on it. It's maybe 1/3 of our revenue and if it does go away it won't sink us. Problem with other things like battle passes. Probably using Jinx for merch. Probably not doing it for money more to get items to people.
  253. R - What do you guys think about build diversity? In the recent patch there's a big issue with characters that are barely functional previously are now unusable. It effects so many builds. Are GGG okay with 60% of the player base playing a single build.
  254. C - We talked about this a bunch in prep for this. I'm not denying at all that there were builds that were harmed. One thing to bare in mind is one analysis we're seeing a greater degree of diversity than any other point in time.
  255. N - People are gravitating to certain builds is because of lack of defences for a lot of builds. It's become increasingly difficult for build some others. Jade, Granite and Basalt had a large amount of the base defence people had and removing that without anything to compensate felt bad.
  256. C - We hear that and will look at it. Maybe next week with the Ziz one in next week we'll have more information by then.
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