ELEX 2

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That's probably true. Current AMD shares on the graphics market are around 10%. Piranha is a quite small studio, so probably they had to prioritize the bigger part of the market.
True on the developers side also, but I meant that AMD and Nvidia both write game ready drivers that optimize performance specifically for bigger games as they release. I expect with Elden Ring and Horizon Forbidden West releasing so recently they had resources elsewhere, and they might catch up with the next driver release.
 
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Prepare for trouble when you reach the faction bases. The game is terribly optimized there from what I've read. In Cleric's base on RTX 3090 there are 70-76 fps.
I wonder if Nvidia/AMD have optimized drivers for the game?

As its not a big AAA release they might not have prioritized it,
I haven't made it to any of the major faction settlements yet (I'm a fairly slow player as I like to explore), but I've had no noticeable fps drops yet. I rarely monitor my fps, but I can tell when it drops significantly. My monitor is 4K and capped at 60hz, so we'll see how it goes. If I run into issues I will post about them.

Nvidia hasn't released an optimized driver yet, but I think you're right, if it's not a widely popular and/or a AAA game, it's probably far down on the
 
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Patch 1 released today, looks like mostly video related issues, hopefully it will help those with FPS and other video related problems.

 
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Piranha Bytes must be busy, patch 2 released today. Various bug fixes and a different camera in the options menu. I haven't tried it yet, but at least they listened to players and we now have 2 different camera options. Steam reviews are now up to "mostly positive".
 
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@Zloth - For what little I've been able to play these last few weeks, I'm still loving it. I've had a couple of issues creep up in my real life that needed to be dealt with these past few weeks. Nothing health related, but time consuming nonetheless, so my normal gaming sessions of 6-10 hrs have been reduced to a sporadic 1-2 hours (plus I haven't been in the forum as often as I usually am). Things should clear up in the next couple weeks so I can dive back in to Elex 2 in earnest.

I still haven't experienced any of the bugs players have talked about on the Steam Discussions, and I haven't had any technical issues either. Maybe I've just been lucky. With the Nvidia drivers, I didn't really think they would do anything specific for Elex 2. Piranha Bytes just doesn't get enough respect in my opinion.

Here's the link to Patch 3:
 
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It's been awhile, but after taking care of some personal business, I'm getting back to playing on a more regular basis now. Elex 2 is a long game, much like Elex; but I suppose much of that depends on how you play. For me, Elex 2 (as well as all Piranha Bytes games) is about exploring a vast open world, learning to survive, building your character, and interacting with various characters and factions.



I'm currently at about 83 hours and still in chapter 1. For some gamers, that might seem like an exorbitant amount of time, but not for me. It's just how I play these open world RPGs, whether it's Elex 2, or Skyrim, or any of several others. If you just followed the main story and ignored a lot of the exploration and side quests you could probably finish it much sooner, but then you're missing out on the heart of the game.

Updates
There was a small patch (#4) on May 4th that mainly addressed a few bugs:

There's now also a beta branch for DX12 that improves the performance & stuttering issues that many were having (I still haven't had any myself). Some players are reporting a 50-60% increase in FPS, which is pretty huge. But there also seems to be some graphical/texture glitches along with that which is why it's still in the beta branch. You can find that info here:

Gameplay
In my opinion it's excellent. This is an old-school open world RPG, with a vast world to explore with varied environments and lighting. One of the things that Piranha Bytes does best is create living breathing worlds.




Combat I'm finding to be much more fluid and intuitive than Elex. There's a lot of different ways to build your character depending upon your approach (ranged, melee, magic, or a mix). Enemy AI seems to be improved also. If an enemy gets severely wounded (human or animal), they may run away to heal and you'll have to start all over. Groups will split up and surround you using a mix of tactics. Getting surrounded, even by weak creatures can be death to Jax. There's also flying creatures that can be challenging, as they have different attacks and moves. It's hard to get a decent screen shot during combat though, as hitting that F12 key means taking my hand off either the keyboard or the mouse.




Conversation choices and your actions in certain situations will affect how the game plays out. Almost everything you do or say can affect your relationship with a faction, a person, a companion or even how your Jax develops. It's real role playing.

Conversations and cut scenes (of which there are more in Elex 2 the previous game) are more cinematic, more along the lines of a Mass Effect or Dragon Age game. They don't come close to Bioware level by any means, and some are better than others, but I think it's a huge step forward and more involved that anything that Piranha Bytes has done to date.


Companions have unique personalities and their own quests and beliefs, and there is a paragon/renegade type system in place which will affect how they react to you. I like it, and it adds a lot more life to the game. Some are better than others, and some will be familiar to you if you played Elex.

Meeting Falk

Oh, a word on companion combat AI: it's pretty bad. Sometimes they'll just stand there for a few seconds before they actually join the fight, but other times they fight immediately. It's very erratic in implementation. But it will save your life to take one with you, as some combat can be brutal for Jax by himself.

Voice acting and dialog is a mixed bag, ranging from very good to a bit shaky. Even the shaky ones just make me laugh, so I can deal with it.

All in all I'm loving my time in Elex 2, and outside of the performance issues at release, I don't understand all the negative press it received. I think Piranha Bytes would have benefited from outsourcing a wider range of beta testers before release if just to find how it runs on a larger variety of PCs.

If you love old-school, open world RPGs take Jax out exploring.
 
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!!! I tend to be pretty slow getting through games, and even I got through all of ELEX 1 in less than 80 hours!
I have to admit I'm a bit strange in my gaming compared to most gamers. I don't play a lot of different games over the course of a year (probably less than 20=25), but when I find one that I really like it's not uncommon for me to play several hundred hours if it's an open world-type game.
 
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Hey, I finally reached Chapter 2:


Actually, that was roughly 10 days ago, and currently sitting at 160.1 hrs according to Steam. But as with the 1st Elex, and even Gothic 3, a lot of my time is just exploring off the beaten path, not following any particular quest. But that's a big part of these games for me, much like in Skyrim and the 1st person Fallouts. I never know what I'll discover. The map is huge, and I've turned off the mini-map to add to the suspense.

There's always trying to find the secret map pieces (as in Elex):


Or sometimes just finding weird/funny things:


Combat intensity as amped up also. Not bullet sponge-type enemies really, but the number and variety of enemies, as well as attack types. It's not uncommon to be surrounded by 10-12 enemies (or more) and with several of them having the "skull" marking (meaning they're above your level for those that don't know). I haven't been able to take any decent combat screenshots, as the action is just too fast. Maybe I'll try to take my 1st gameplay video.


The DX12 patch is still in beta, but I still haven't had any performance issues. I did however run into 2 bugs that forced me to reload a saved game, but I believe they were both a result of scripted events not triggering correctly.

There are quite a few short (but skippable) cut scenes before & after certain quests, which does (for the most part) give Elex 2 a more "cinematic feel" like a Mass Effect game would have. The 2 times they didn't trigger like they should, was after a combat sequence (both different). The result was that Jax just froze solid, with no interaction with the world possible. The game itself didn't freeze, just Jax. So it was possible to access the main menu and load a save. And on replaying, everything triggered properly. Maybe not so much a specific bug, as a random script failing to trigger. But it is very rare.


Two good things about Elex 2 that can help with that situation (though not prevent it), is that there are several auto-save slots (the frequency of which you can set in the options), as well as the benefit of being able to quick save during combat. That can be dangerous though, as it's easy to make one right before you get killed. And you can get killed quickly.

@Zloth - If I'm revealing too much information in these occasional posts, let me know and I'll curtail them, as I'm trying not to give any spoilers.
 
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@Zloth - The game map is partly new (maybe mostly?) and part of the old. The cool thing is (at least I like it), is that the areas from Elex that you travel have changed, sometimes radically, but you'll recognize certain features that were in Elex. To say how or why would be too much of a spoiler for the story I think. There are still mountains to the north. Some of the new areas are really different:


The map piece screenshot is #16, in the lower right hand corner of the complete secret map (I'm still missing 5 parts).
 
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Frindis

Moderator
@mainer Is there a lot of cool loot to find off the beaten path? Like a hidden sword or gun that has some good stats or a legendary chest piece etc. I'm a sucker for going on treasure hunts but often in RPG games there just isn't enough focus on hidden loot. Skyrim and Morrowind is probably my best example of how I want the loot to be as you can often find some really cool stuff hidden in caves or directions to some loot from map/notes you find, etc.
 
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@Frindis - There are unique weapons that you can find, but I would say the frequency at which you find them isn't on the same scale aa Morrowind/Oblivion/Skyrim. And you've really got to search off the beaten path. But when you find one it feels good because of the rarity.


No unique armor though. Good armor is hard to find and expensive to buy, ant the best (at this point) seems to be tied to joining a faction. It's possible that could change, but I haven't found any. You'll also frequently find non-unique weapons that are better than what you have, most of which can be upgraded at crafting stations to do more damage. Weapon use is tied to what stats you've increased.

No real collectables to find outside of the map pieces (which is aways a thrill for me), potions that can increase stats and/or learning points and health potions (which are huge in the beginning). Some areas are only accessible with an upgraded jetpack (which is on your skill tree). Also ore veins to mine, various notes and audio tapes or recipes, ore veins to mine, locked containers which can be picked or hacked, and a lot of stuff just to sell. My basic rule of thumb in an open world game like this (as well as the ES series), is if I can pick it up, I will. My favorite achievement:


@Zloth - Another thing I should mention, because I know you often choose to play a magic user, is that Elex 2 seems geared towards weapon type characters, at least that's my impression so far. I rarely create a magic user unless I'm creating a party of characters. I'm just a weapons type player when it comes to combat. All skills, with the exception of magic skills, are there to learn for anyone, if you find the right trainer and have the money. Magic skills are locked behind 3 major factions, and it's doubtful that you'll be able to even join a faction for quite awhile. So it feels like a magic using character is going to be more difficult to build early on in the game. It must be possible, but it seems like you might have a larger handicap at the beginning.
 

Zloth

Community Contributor
Another thing I should mention, because I know you often choose to play a magic user, is that Elex 2 seems geared towards weapon type characters, at least that's my impression so far.
The first game was, too. I had to sneak around through the NE part of the map in ELEX 1 to join the priesthood thing. It was some time after that before I got to some good spells. A laser gun and a companion with an even bigger laser gun were big power jumps for me.
 
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Hey, I finally completed Elex 2! Final character level 57, joined Berserkers and gained Paladin level. Total hours played (according to Steam) was 222.8.


Even though I was a Berserker, I never used or upgraded the magic skills (although I did max out 4 skill trees, including the jedpack). I'm a weapons type-player, but I wanted some continuity with my Elex 1 game. As Minsc would say:
View: https://youtu.be/6femF3zHbtA


And I still haven't explored every single area on the map, but I did manage to complete all the 16 map pieces quest, though the results were somewhat disappointing (confession: I had to Google 2 of the 16 parts because I just couldn't find them).


Overall, my experience was that it was an incredible, open world RPG, where many of you choices in conversations and actions could have a huge effect on the outcome, as well as companions. Yeah, the character animations are a bit rough, surviving early can be brutal, and the technical issues are well publicized; but the immersion in a living world and story was awesome.

Concerning the technical aspects, I never had any, outside of 1 random CTD (which could have been from anything & non-repeatable), and three instances where Jax froze solid (not the game) and I had to reload my most recent save. All 3 of those events were, I believe, from scripted events not trigger correctly. And all of those were on companion missions (of which there are many) and non-repeatable (also loading a save game and it doesn't reoccur). Quick save often, even during combat.

There are also Easter Eggs (as in all PB games) to be found. Explore early (Chapter 1) and often, as that's where you'll find many of the map pieces and some of the "unique" weapons, which can be a life-saver. Like "Capt'n Spike":


One of my favorite Easter Eggs, was a secret quest that can be hard to get, but I'm putting it behind "spoiler" tags for those who may want to play won't be spoiled (that sounds awkward). But seriously @Zloth , don't look, because I know you may plan to play in the future (since this is your post). It does contain my first ever gameplay footage video from YouTube. (@ZedClampet - I figured out my microphone issue, which I posted about to your response).

@Zloth - I said not to look! Anyway, it may not be a huge spoiler as I don't mention how to get the quest, just the result. It's for the Billy Idol concert, but it was still cool to me because I hadn't seen any quest like it in any RPGs I've played since the Blind Guardian concert in Sacred 2. On a side note, it took me what seemed like forever to upload this thing. Maybe it's just my upload speed from Spectrum, but mygod, it took almost 30 minutes.
View: https://youtu.be/rvT014oRlJ4
 

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