1.7.0 Update Review: After improvement, the game still sucks

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bonerstorm

Genghis Khan't
Sergeant
I am happy to report first and foremost that the game is slightly more playable than it was pre 1.7.0.

Unfortunately, it's still not playable and requires modding to make it so. I will grant that perhaps some of my mods conflicted with the vanilla changes: I'm running RBM, Diplomacy, Kaoses Tweaks and Arena Expanded. Also AutoTrader and Autoresolve Rebalanced for QOL.

Here are the things I noticed after playing 1.7.0 after not playing for several months:
  1. XP seems to be ramped up at the beginning, but slowed down WAY WORSE at higher levels (like a trap where fun goes to die)
  2. Combat AI seems to be slightly more functional, but will throw up errors on a regular basis
  3. It seems like the per-woman pregnancy limit is now being applied per-clan (or at least one female's pregnancies reduce the chances of other women in the same clan getting pregnant)
  4. Regional bandits seem to have mostly or completely disappeared, replaced by many more bands of looters
  5. Smithing is now vaguely viable, even if it seems kind of glitchy: "orders" for gear sometimes give only half-rewards despite meeting all requirements (sometimes I caught myself accidentally making a slashing + piercing spear instead of JUST piercing like they asked - that might be most of it?)

Summary of my mental breakdown after playing for ~40 hours on the new patch:
I gained 1 point of Honor. I leveled up my One Handed and Bow skills to about 150. Riding and Athletics are about 100 each. Smithing stands at 225 (I only used Kaoses Tweaks to increase out-of-settlement stamina regen to 50% instead of 0% - no other tweaks to Smithing). Charm is at 262 and Trade is at 182 with 5 focus each and 9 SOC. Leadership is at 29 despite constantly walking around with all consumables. Tactics is at 37.

My surgeon's med skill is 87. My Steward's is at 185. My Scout is at 101.

This was after using Kaoses Tweaks to triple XP for Leadership, Roguery, Tactics, Medicine and Engineering. No mods to anything else.

AND FORTY ****ING HOURS OF PLAY. (OK maybe I fell asleep once or twice with the game open)

The "Everything Has a Price" Trade skill perk is set at 300 Trade rather than 225 Trade like it used to be. Even at max Focus and 9 SOC, my green bar doesn't go anywhere near there.

I shudder to think what ungodly amounts of money I'd have to make trading in order to get up there. This is a character who has been doing NOTHING but trading, tournaments, smithing and quests.

For reference, every IRL denarius had silver value equal to roughly $5 USD - so just 200 mil would make you an ancient billionaire.

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VERDICT:
Get Tweaks. Turn global XP mod to 200%. Set the worst-to-level non-combat skills to 300% on top of that. The game is unplayably stupid otherwise.

Also **** everything (SNIPPY SNIP SNIP I WAS TOO MEAN).

This isn't a game. This is a torture device for anyone but the most brain-dead simpleton who loves nothing more than grinding looters as a full-time profession. And whoever is making these terrible design decisions is completely insane.
 
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Nakh

Sergeant
This is harsh, but I have to agree with at least some points:

  • At some point main character progression stops dead. Gear progression, skill progression, clan power progression - all this completely depletes in few in-game years. No development in RPG game = no fun, don't know how developers can expect us to play this for several generations.
  • Combat AI need few mode difficulty levels introduced, current maximum need to be average.
  • If this is true - this must be error of some sort. If this is not error, but deliberate change - one who made it need to see doctor.
  • Regional bandits are fine in my 1,7 games.
  • Smithing was broken OP moneymaking tool and somewhat fine companion leveling tool. With exp gain nerfed it is just OP broken moneymaking toll which any reasonable player will avoid or heavily restrain it's use.
Roguery, Medicine, Engineering - all too slow to level up. Trade level 300 is nice 300IQ move to make players hate this game and never touch it again. I tried to reach it once, I gave up around 250, it was painfully boring playthrough.
 

Askorti

Sergeant Knight at Arms
WB
Also **** everything about this game and everyone who defends it.

This isn't a game. This is a torture device for anyone but the most brain-dead simpleton who loves nothing more than grinding looters as a full-time profession. And whoever is making these terrible design decisions is completely insane.
Dont expect people to take you seriously with an attitude like that.
 

BlackRainZ

Squire
M&BWBWF&SVC
I have had no problems getting my skills up. I don't get the complaints. I am not using anything that makes getting skills/leveling up faster and I have multiple skills at or around 300 and many over 200. Wasn't that difficult for me? My character is now 51 so I have been playing a while, and my first 2 children have reached adulthood (with 2 more soon to reach adulthood). Everything seems to be working well for me and I am enjoying the game (with a few important mods of course, like diplomacy, the true series of mods, etc.)
 

bonerstorm

Genghis Khan't
Sergeant
At what point in the 40 hours did you realize you could be spending your time in a more enjoyable way?
Right about then, actually. That's when I turned global xp to 2x and set the prickly non-combat skills to 3x on top of that.

That vastly improved my gaming experience. The "gaming experience" still consists of roaming from town to town buying/selling, tournamenting, smithing, occasionally questing and rarely farming looters - so it's barely better than my IRL life, but I don't hate myself as much for playing it now that I've got the mods to tweak it into the semblance of a decent game.
At some point main character progression stops dead. Gear progression, skill progression, clan power progression - all this completely depletes in few in-game years. No development in RPG game = no fun, don't know how developers can expect us to play this for several generations.
I think they responded to player complaints that the game had too much grind by making the curve steeper, so they're still an equal amount of grind but most of it is later in the game.

This tells me that somebody at TW understands that the players want less grind, but someone else in management is demanding the same level of grind overall.

I'm not a game design expert by any means, but I imagine that part of it HAS to be an equation where X is the ideal gameplay time where the average hardcore gamer will play to "max out" without getting bored, Y is the total of XP/loot/rewards which get there and Z is the function which gets you to Y given X time. Afterwards, super-hardcore gamers can "Prestige" by leveling up their next character (kids in this game).

With my experiment where X is 40 hours, my Y is about halfway to where I expect it to be. It also appears that the RPG stat progression is set so you can only max out 3 skills, which all have to be aligned on one base stat. You've got to pick whether you're the best at melee, ranged, social, sneaky non-combat or smartypants non-combat. Just the one. And, if you do so, you'll still be worse at most skills than most auto-generated nobles.
If this is true - this must be error of some sort. If this is not error, but deliberate change - one who made it need to see doctor.
Yeah I'm not sure. It's unconfirmed and I can no longer test it since I modded that variable in my game. If it is a new thing, it's new in 1.7.0 and only shows up in fresh saves.
Smithing was broken OP moneymaking tool and somewhat fine companion leveling tool. With exp gain nerfed it is just OP broken moneymaking toll which any reasonable player will avoid or heavily restrain it's use.
It actually isn't that bad to level if you're doing the Orders instead of Free Build. I'm not tweaking any Smithing xp gain and it's my 2nd-highest skill despite putting nothing into END. Also the relationship gain from Orders is responsible for 90% of my Charm XP.

The money economy vis a vis equipment is totally broken in BL. Pointy throwing sticks should not cost more than warhorses. IDK what on earth is motivating their reasoning here. The thing I hate about it is that I'm making gobs of money which is NOT leveling my Trade skill. The only use of all this meaninglyess extra cash is to outfit all of my companions in Imperial Lamellar.
Trade level 300 is nice 300IQ move to make players hate this game and never touch it again. I tried to reach it once, I gave up around 250, it was painfully boring playthrough.
Yeah I have no clue how it would be possible to get that high. My entire playthrough so far has been independent operator trading - refusing to join any faction - and I haven't even broken 200. And that's WITH AutoTrader tweaked for maximum profit.

It may be that the Diplomacy mod and my own coterie of like SEVEN caravans is cutting into profit because of the lack of wartime shortages. I'm not sure if village production types are randomized or set per-game (I remember workshops being randomized in previous games), but there seems to be an overwhelming market glut of Wine because of a massive overabundance of grapes on the western side of the map.

The economy could definitely use some tweaking and I don't know if anyone's doing that now that Mexxico's gone.
Regional bandits are fine in my 1,7 games.
How many do you see? I might share some screenshots but in my last couple hours of play traveling the map, I didn't find more than ONE regional bandit group. The rest were all looters. Are you playing on a fresh 1.7.0 save?
Dont expect people to take you seriously with an attitude like that.
Don't expect me to take you seriously if you can't address any of my actual critiques.
My character is now 51 so I have been playing a while
How many hours on a fresh save on the new patch?

I played for 40 hours in two weeks. That's, like, an entire part-time job. It's pretty unreasonable to expect most gamers to invest that kind of time into something that isn't an MMO.
 

bonerstorm

Genghis Khan't
Sergeant
It may be that the Diplomacy mod and my own coterie of like SEVEN caravans is cutting into profit because of the lack of wartime shortages. I'm not sure if village production types are randomized or set per-game (I remember workshops being randomized in previous games), but there seems to be an overwhelming market glut of Wine because of a massive overabundance of grapes on the western side of the map.

The economy could definitely use some tweaking and I don't know if anyone's doing that now that Mexxico's gone.
Actually I want to highlight this point:

One of the things I did in my latest playthrough was make a silversmith in Lycaron and then I systematically bought/changed-production every single silversmith in the Imperial heartland. I noticed that the price of Silver went through the floor so much that caravans were buying up all the material silver in Lycaron to ship elsewhere, so I made a second silversmith in the same city. Daily profit dropped from ~175 to about ~150 each.

But caravans were still buying up silver and shipping it elsewhere. Why? I have no clue.

It appears that there's demand for silver in towns that don't actually have silversmiths, which doesn't really make sense. It might also be an unforeseen or glitched caravan AI issue where they're buying up raw materials with Green pricing even if no towns in the region have better pricing.

I'm really not sure. Devs have been quiet on the econ simulation for a long time.
 

bonerstorm

Genghis Khan't
Sergeant
Most of what you mentioned, O.P, although undeniably real to you, is a matter of taste anyway. Not everyone plays a game as you do, nor why. Your expectations of Bannerlord aren't necessarily everyone else's.
You say the game is "slightly more" playable ( again, according to **you**) but then again, that is expressly the exact reason why the devs worked on 1.7.0. To me, the game has been "playable" as soon as the first couple of patches but, again, that all depends on how and why one plays it.
You mentioned you play with mods. While I do as well for other reasons than you, it may also be the influence of those mods that gave you the unexpected results you've encountered. Were those results repeatable W/O mods?
I mostly play games to see what I can and can't get away with by tweaking a slew of parameters in the mods I use and in the game. I don't play for entertainment only although there is that, I play to test and explore the capabilities of machine and software, that's what interests me most.
So, with a different way of looking at things, I do appreciate your OP, thanks for the chuckles, and have a good rest of your day.
"Repeatable W/O mods"

Are you telling me to commit suicide? Because that's what I'd do if I had to play this game for 40 hours without mods.

If your "taste" is getting to the early-mid-game 40 hours in by grinding the same 3 or 4 activities - perhaps with different scenery - then you have objectively bad taste.

The only way I could see this game being "fun" from any perspective without mods is if you're not playing on Realistic and you have extremely low standards - just enjoying the looter-murdering sim.

40 hours of grind to get to early-mid-tier is acceptable... for an MMO. It's not acceptable for a SP game, for the vast majority of SP gamers. That's not a "game" - it's a part-time job. And keep in mind that I've been playing M&B for 10 years, so I was power-leveling that entire time with every strategy short of outright cheese - plus mod tweaks to give full arena XP and doubling XP on Tactics/Leadership/Medicine/Engineering/Roguery.

How much time do you spend playing this game? How much have you spent playing on the latest patch? What does your MC's charsheet look like after that time?

What exactly is "fun" about this game for you? That's a serious question. If you're going to drop a turd on my post by calling my opinion invalid, you should at least be able to articulate what on earth supports your own.
 
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CptMuppet

Sergeant
But caravans were still buying up silver and shipping it elsewhere. Why? I have no clue.

It appears that there's demand for silver in towns that don't actually have silversmiths, which doesn't really make sense. It might also be an unforeseen or glitched caravan AI issue where they're buying up raw materials with Green pricing even if no towns in the region have better pricing.

I'm really not sure. Devs have been quiet on the econ simulation for a long time.
In one of my saves I had bought literally everything from one of the towns, and after that I have done some tests to check what is produced and used there. I made sure that there were no caravans, villagers or parties entering the town during my tests, so there was for sure no trading going on in the town. I have also taken into account workshops production. Lageta is the name of this town and life went on there peacefully for a long time, and prosperity have grown to over 3000.

It seems like towns are consuming daily small amount of all trading goods and it is slightly randomized. Towns are also producing daily some low tier weapons, armors and saddles, and they doing it even if there is no trading good there of any kind. Just like that, weapons, clothes and saddles out of thin air.

I don't know why this is happening and whether it should be happening. All I know is that it IS happening, and now this knowledge has at least some use, because it explains where all this silver from your game was going - The Wise People of Calradia were eating it everyday! Just out of the boredom!
They were eating iron and other strange things, so it migh explain from where all the weapons came from if you think about it. Truly, very wise are The People of Calradia.
 

bonerstorm

Genghis Khan't
Sergeant
It seems like towns are consuming daily small amount of all trading goods and it is slightly randomized. Towns are also producing daily some low tier weapons, armors and saddles, and they doing it even if there is no trading good there of any kind. Just like that, weapons, clothes and saddles out of thin air.
We're having this discussion now in another thread and we've got a dev in there for the moment!

From my meager learnings since I complained about this (looking at hella-old posts), it appears that every town has a base consumption of every good that scales on Prosperity (not randomized!). Also certain goods are produced by artisans --> I know, for instance, they turn livestock into meat and hides.

Also I just found out - I believe - that settlements either take workshop supply/demand into account during pricing AND/OR they have a buffer stockpile that's invisible to the player.
 

Phantom425

Sergeant
"Repeatable W/O mods"

Are you telling me to commit suicide? Because that's what I'd do if I had to play this game for 40 hours without mods.

If your "taste" is getting to the early-mid-game 40 hours in by grinding the same 3 or 4 activities - perhaps with different scenery - then you have objectively bad taste.
This is literally your own taste. Certain people can play the base game without mods and have it be fun. That isn't objectively bad taste, that's just people disagreeing with you. Which I guess you can't handle at this point given this.
Also **** everything about this game and everyone who defends it.
This isn't even my trying to shush any criticism about the game, because I agree with a good amount of your points. For me, the game is pretty grindy at times, and that really just isn't for me. However, you can't just go "**** everything about this game and everyone who defends it" and expect people to take you and your criticism seriously.
 

CptMuppet

Sergeant
From my meager learnings since I complained about this (looking at hella-old posts), it appears that every town has a base consumption of every good that scales on Prosperity (not randomized!). Also certain goods are produced by artisans --> I know, for instance, they turn livestock into meat and hides.
I think you have misunderstood me. I didn't mean that consumption is completely random, but that it seems like there is some small random element to it. It might be still primarly based on prosperity. I'll describe in detail what I have tested and what I have observed to make it clearer for anyone interested.

So, I have wanted to test if there is something other than food items consumed in towns, and if there is some production in towns other that the one from workshops.

I have a save file from version e.1.6.5 with a town - Lageta - right before town/economy/consumption/production uptade tick will hit. This town has completely empty market - no equpment, no trading goods, no livestock, nor horses, no items of any kind, nothing - and it has full food stock, its amount is 700. I own this town and all wakrshops there. Town's prosperity is 3193.85 and I have picked there continuous project "Train Militia". Garrison is not recruiting new soldiers. I also have decent amount of all types of trading goods and livestock in my inventory and I am visiting that town.

Now, I can easily sell there whatever I want. After selling items I can wait just few seconds for the next consumption/production update happening, without worrying about some random caravans, villagers or parties visiting the town and ruining my test, and I can check after the update what have changed in the market.

As you correctly wrote, livestock in the market can be turned into meat and hides. Because of that I don't sell any of it to the town to have clearer image on what is consumed. I also want to eliminate workshops' production interfering with town's consumption, so I change all workshops to breweries. I don't care about food items, so I don't sell them either. I only sell non-animal, non-food trading goods to the town. I sell to the market 100 of every single type of these trading goods, and I save the game.

With this new save file and everything prepared, I am ready for the first set of tests.
I wait in the town few second for the update, and check what have changed in the market. After that I load the save and do the same thing again and compare the results with the ones from the previous test. I am doing it multiple times.

In every test, consumption and production are similar to ones from the other tests in set, but not exacly the same. For every item type, random number of items from range from 0 to 4 is consumed. Ranges are the same for all the tests, but exact numbers of items consumed are not.
Also, In every test few equipment items are produced, but different ones from same pool for every test.

After that set of tests I have thought that some of these trading goods are just used for production of equipment items without usage of workshops, but I was wrong.
I have done similar set of tests, but this time not selling anything to the city, so the market will be completely empty while the next consumption/production update will hit. Production of equipment items stayed the same as in previous set of tests.

There is clearly an element of randomness in town consumption and production. It is not a first time I have found something like that in Bannerlord - some Roguery xp gains have also implemented some element of randomness.


We're having this discussion now in another thread and we've got a dev in there for the moment!
Thanks for the link, I have just read this thread, and if I will have some usefull input for that topic, I will post it there.
 

bonerstorm

Genghis Khan't
Sergeant
With this new save file and everything prepared, I am ready for the first set of tests.
I wait in the town few second for the update, and check what have changed in the market. After that I load the save and do the same thing again and compare the results with the ones from the previous test. I am doing it multiple times.

In every test, consumption and production are similar to ones from the other tests in set, but not exacly the same. For every item type, random number of items from range from 0 to 4 is consumed. Ranges are the same for all the tests, but exact numbers of items consumed are not.
Also, In every test few equipment items are produced, but different ones from same pool for every test.
Hmm... did you run your tests using the same save as a baseline? In other words, there are semi-random results after a tick or two from the same point in time? Are you running the test for a full 24-hour cycle? How large of an effect is it? Is it something that could be a reflection of decimal values?

If so to #1, then yeah that sounds random. Evin if so, it may be the fact that production doesn't tick at a constant rate: workshops that produce more than 1/day actually tick more than once per day. Perhaps you're catching your breweries in between their ticks, if they don't all go at once?
There is clearly an element of randomness in town consumption and production. It is not a first time I have found something like that in Bannerlord - some Roguery xp gains have also implemented some element of randomness.
Wow. That's... wow. I don't even know how to handle that mentally. That seems... questionable as a design choice.
 

CptMuppet

Sergeant
did you run your tests using the same save as a baseline?
Yes.

Are you running the test for a full 24-hour cycle?
No, only for a fracton of a day, but I was testing it for a longer time earlier and this town base consumption and production happens only once a day.

Perhaps you're catching your breweries in between their ticks, if they don't all go at once?
I don't think breweries use silver, pottery or any other item I have tested in their production process, but if they do, then it is one helluva design choice :grin:
 

drallim33

Sergeant
CptMuppet said:
Stuff about town consumption
You can see basic consumption in a town by hovering over the basket in the town screen. It might have to be a town you own, I forget.

But you can also see all the details about the production in "Modules\SandBox\ModuleData\spworkshops.xml". It shows the ownable workshops but also "artisans" which is a hidden workshop in every town that makes assorted bits of clothing and so forth.
 
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CptMuppet

Sergeant
You can see basic consumption in a town by hovering over the basket in the town screen. It might have to be a town you own, I forget.
Thanks for the info, I didn't know about that. This basket is in "Manage town" tab, so you need to be the owner of a town to check it.

I have tested it real quick and it seems like it shows consumption from the previous day mostly, but not etirely correct. Maybe I'll test it more precisely one day to check whether it is like this or my test wasn't good enough.
 

Ananda_The_Destroyer

Master Knight
XP seems to be ramped up at the beginning, but slowed down WAY WORSE at higher levels (like a trap where fun goes to die)
XP or skill points? XP is fine, it gets very slow at 32+ (or rather the tnl is very high) but that's basically a finished character.
Skill points are all over the place in speed and ease of raising, some are easy (you previously complained about bow though lol)/
I think this may be causing your bow skill issue you talked about in your previous thread, as if it reduces the damage per shot it will reduce the skill gained too. This is my first looter fight gains from a new sandbox gain. It's ****ing disgusting how much I gained! TBF this is a 5fp bow character form 40yo sandbox start.
UiqEK.jpg


It seems like the per-woman pregnancy limit is now being applied per-clan (or at least one female's pregnancies reduce the chances of other women in the same clan getting pregnant)
I got six in my 1.7 games before re-starting, so I don't think you're "5 per clan" was true and honestly unless a Dev tells us they changed it, I don't think they did. Although I think it's odd @SadShogun didn't clear it up in the other thread, maybe they did change it? maybe they have me on ignore? Maybe they're not the baby system Dev anymore?

Regional bandits seem to have mostly or completely disappeared
They're all in my party after getting the 150 roguery perk

Smithing is now
Smithing sucks, always has. I'd like to make a long scythe, but not gonna press menu action and waste campaign time trying to unlock the parts. Maybe I'll chaeta and make a clan mate the ultimate smith and have all parts unlocked or something.

I shudder to think what ungodly amounts of money I'd have to make trading in order to get up there.
Trading is nope.

Get Tweaks. Turn global XP mod to 200%. Set the worst-to-level non-combat skills to 300% on top of that. The game is unplayably stupid otherwise.
It's funny cause you cheated so hard but you still made a bad character and didn't achieve much in the game.

I HAVE to roast you character: WHy *4* control and endurance? You gets 225 perks from 3 and 250 form 5, but *4* gets you NOTHING! You just threw attributes into the toilet! You have *3* cunning but NO fp in scouting, why? Why waste the attribute if you're not going to get keen sight on you main character? WHY!?

who loves nothing more than grinding looters as a full-time
You can just fight lords too, what are you scared? You don't know how to scute n shoot? It's like you gave up before even learning how to play.
asIXU.jpg

9HduH.jpg

^yeah I ran out of arrows and got off the horse and picked up a sword to kill the last 2 guys
 
Just chucked a couple of hours into 1.7.

So, let's start with the good:

1. Performance seems to be really good. I haven't experienced the terrible lag plaguing the earlier versions or the endless spinning of icon. Siege is also lag free. Thumbs up!

2. I really like the pre battle set up. Be nice if we could save formations? Thumbs up!

3. Lots of new maps. Some are nice.


The bad:

1. Gameplay hasn't changed. It's not immersive.

2. Diplomacy is poor. Even with diplomacy mod, the base AI decisions are just poor. Why would anyone initiate a 3rd war?

3. Kingdom policies are bland and feel meaningless. I would prefer things like "Free trade vs Mercantilism" - a free trade policy would mean your kingdom would never attack caravans during war (non hostile and trade continues) or mercantilism - which allows foreign caravans to be attacked. A policy like that may allow the next policy called Privateers or something similar.

Basically, policies that actually open up gameplay and not just tweak numbers in the grand simulator.

4. Prices, food production/consumption, taxation..basically all macro or micro economics are stuffed. Maybe it makes sense. I don't know. Feels like it doesn't. My castles are negative food. My town can't even support the garrison tax wise. It's nuts.

5. Clan parties. These really suck. They recruit all sorts of rubbish and just dump the best troops into friendly garrisons. Stop that already.


Summary:

As a *combat simulator, it's decent but that's about it.

*Small scale combat is still relatively fun but any battle that involves reinforcements suck.
 
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