Power armors suck for game balance

Discussion in 'General Fallout Discussion' started by roggles, Jun 13, 2009.

  1. roggles

    roggles First time out of the vault

    Nov 12, 2008
    Why aren't power armors attacked more often for how much they mess up the SPECIAL-system? I can understand +1, but +4 Strength is really ridiculous (and whatever you could get in FO3). The armors really make it easy to create a character that is good at just about everything. If you play a weak character he should be weak! It also bothers me every time that inexperienced players not knowing about the power armor should be punished for putting too many points into Strength. What were they thinking?
  2. your evil twin

    your evil twin It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Apr 29, 2006
    I guess the developers decided that while it was nice for players to be able to roleplay as a weak but clever character who talks/sneaks his way through most situations, they also wanted players to be able to survive a fight with Super Mutants/Enclave at the end of the game. While it is certainly possible to beat Fallout 1 by being sneaky and/or clever, it is rather anticlimactic, and they figured most players will want to kick some butt.

    The Power Armor is the way to do this - at the end of the game you get a high-tech suit that makes you highly resistant to damage, even if you are a weak nerd, and gives you +3 or +4 strength so you can use big guns, carry lots of stuff, or beat the crap out of enemies with melee/unarmed.

    Ehen playing Fallout 1 or 2 for the first time you are unlikely to get Power Armor until quite late in the game, so it doesn't unbalance things.

    Players that choose high strength when creating their character get to have an easy game (combat-wise) for the first 3/4 of the game, and then when they get the power armor they don't get a strength benefit and so things aren't much easier or harder.

    Players that choose weak strength will have a harder game, combat-wise, since melee/unarmed won't be very effective, forcing the player to use guns for most combat situations. (And that's regular guns, not big guns.) Then at the end things get easier thanks to the Power Armor, you get your chance to kick butt.

    Like the super-powered gravity gun at the end of Half-Life 2 - of course it is unbalanced, but that's so that you can be a one-man army and fight through hundreds of Combine soldiers in a few minutes.

    Experienced Fallout/Fallout 2 players know how to get the Power Armor quite quickly. Especially in Fallout 2... you can effectively "break" the game by getting Power Armor straight away, making yourself invincible against most enemies in the first half of the game. It's up to you whether you use such tricks. For normal players not using walkthroughs, there won't be any Power Armor until 3/4 of the way through the game.

    Fallout 3 tried to do more balanced Power Armor - +2 strength on the Brotherhood armor and +1 strength on the Enclave armor. Not as powerful as the other Fallout games.

    Also, in Fallout Tactics your statistcs can go over 10, so the extra strength isn't wated. You can have a high strength character put on power armor and become strength 11 or 12. So the strong just get stronger and the SPECIAL points aren't wasted.
  3. RedConversation

    RedConversation First time out of the vault

    May 21, 2009
    I honestly didn't think the Power Armor in Fallout2 was terribly unbalancing, as most of your late-game enemies were the Enclave, armed to the teeth and in power armor. So, in Fallout2, I needed the power armor because they had it. It's not unbalancing at that point--it's just evening the odds. Power Armor that worked a hell of a lot better than it did for them in Fallout3.

    As for Fallout1, I only once had a character that wore Power Armor. I guess I got a bit too deep in the roleplaying aspects of the game.
  4. Lepidus

    Lepidus First time out of the vault

    Jun 22, 2008
    I would imagine that going to Navarro and acquiring Adv. Power Armor at a low level would mess up statistical balancing, but then it's technically an exploit, so one should expect that in the first place, right?
  5. NOPR

    NOPR First time out of the vault

    Jun 27, 2009
    Power Armor isn't designed to be balanced and balancing is only overly important for shooters or any combat dominating game.

    Easy to see that power armor is high tech that makes you superior - what's the story about the enclave and brotherhood and other high tech factions anyways ? - to allow weak physical beings to dominate the world. It's like a levelup for characters but just for the armor. Of course this is unbalanced - it's like leveling !

    The same goes for all tech equip ( plasmaguns, lockpicks, etc.) boosting up the player. And it's far more real - I've never seen a human grow into a superman in a few weeks (like shown in a lot of RPGs), but if you give a human military equipment like hell he can at least release hell on an enemy.

    So basically fallout plays more real than any fantasy rpg as it's more technical based. That is if you ignore the utterly ridiculous perks.

    Bethesda made the power armor balanced - but Fallout 3 is 80% shooter - never forget that.
  6. Ravager69

    Ravager69 Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Dec 21, 2007
    But they made it ridiculous by the way. A high-tech armor falling apart after a couple of 7.62mm shots from a rusty hunting rifle? Wild dogs damaging you through thick metal plates?


    Power Armor is the WOW of the Fallout world. You go through the game and most of the time get your ass kicked by stronger enemies, which require a lot of skill or\and luck to beat and finally you find something that gives you an edge over them.


    You need it to survive the late enemies and they're simply fun to use. And in FO 1\2 they're done right and behave just like an advanced suit of very resistant armor would behave.
  7. Sieg

    Sieg First time out of the vault

    Dec 8, 2008
    Well said :clap: I agree completely.
  8. Blackened

    Blackened I should set a cutom tite

    Jun 29, 2008
    It indeed ruins pretty much of the game's balance. Playing with Melee Weapons or Unarmed is much better when starting with high (10?) strength. But, since you get +4 strength (+3 from PA and +1 from surgery) in F1, or +5 strength in F2 (+4 from APA, +1 from memory module), starting with 6 or more str means that you're weaker in endgame.
  9. Hamenaglar

    Hamenaglar It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Jun 2, 2009
    but you are stronger early on...
  10. Tagaziel

    Tagaziel Panzerkatze Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Dec 10, 2003
    Uh, Fallout is not about powergaming but roleplaying?
  11. Stealste

    Stealste First time out of the vault

    Jan 15, 2009
    Someone should have told Bethesda that...
  12. NOPR

    NOPR First time out of the vault

    Jun 27, 2009
    Someone got it right, it seems. In a RPG you play your role and rise in power (called leveling + getting better equipment), which can be part of roleplaying too (but doesn't have to). Growing past your former enemies is part of the play. We really don't have balance in such a game - you start as an underpowered nobody and you end as an almost invincible semigod. The progression is what counts and the progression must be balanced.

    In an action game or online game everything must be balanced, so that every player can experience challenge all time without getting bored or cheated by other online players. Therefore all items must be strictly limited in power or get negative side effects to retain game balance.

    Now with action or online rpgs you get the problem that both principles are somehow a contradiction. Either you can explore openly and then have the chance to encounter an enemy which is much too strong or much too weak, or you get your enemies thrown towards you automatically balanced all time. The same with items: either risk to get a power weapon too early or too late or let the game give it to you calculated automatically.

    Bethesda's way of autoscaling the system to match the players progression is completely wrong. The world around you evolves with the players progression and ends with the destruction of useful NPCs just because the player levels. And just because Bethesda wants the player to experience all-time-challenge. If they would allow a player to use true power armor, how could they keep up the challenge if the player encountered a simple dog ? Answer is to cut down the armor value and create ridiculous powerful killerdogs that can bite through metal? Well, they aren't far away from doing that.

    So the real rpg-killer is the wish to get an all-time-challenge !
  13. Panker_u_sakou_starom

    Panker_u_sakou_starom It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Jul 16, 2009
    The only thing that sux about PA is the fact that it is broken: why the hell my char with developed ST10 can't get the +4 bonus that the damned thing provides? Because the primary stats are capped at 10 and all of you people that like HtH can just go fuck themselves :p

    But anyway, why the hell you would use PA when there are loads of even more cool armors in the game already? PA is for players that like to use gifted, and apart from the Enclave where it is required so you wont get shot the moment you step out of Valdez I use the damn thing for income and nothing else. It's the amount of awesomeness that counts not the amount of damage resistance.

    Fuck PA I say, my character likes to beat the crap out of people in black leather and purple silk. Mmmmmmmhm.
  14. wexer9

    wexer9 First time out of the vault

    Jul 17, 2009
    Unarmed? That would be awesome.
  15. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    Do you really think that after 10 years people never discussed that kind of topic around here?

    Its not meant as insult but I would think its a bit naive to think that there have not been big discussions about it. Or that some people had not some issue with the quality of the power armor.

    But on the other side I can only agree with what many said. Its meant as very advanced high tech and thats how it should work, not like in Fallout 3 where hillbilies with shovels can show you the way ... by the way Powerarmor was part of the story in Fallout 1 and 2. It gave the US a big opportunity. It was very important for the Brotherhood and it also helped much the Enclave. Why should it be now weak?
  16. fallout_fan

    fallout_fan It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Sep 11, 2008
    I love power armor. It really makes me feel like Im trully a walking tool of destruction and death in the games. I want some real power armor. And a mini gun,
  17. Panker_u_sakou_starom

    Panker_u_sakou_starom It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Jul 16, 2009
    My current char (ST9 PE1 EN10 CH1 IN9 AG10 LK1, small frame jinxed, melee/lockpick/speech) is a walking nuclear apocalypse that has taken the form of a sharpened spear and palm strike. Who needs guns? I massacred slavers without the help of the psycho on level 4 alone and had luck to stumble upon the bridge of death on my way to vault city and KO Guardians ass with a crit to the eyes for no damage and loot him for the robe. If I didn't look that cool in purple with a spear I would probably continue to scourge the wastes in leather jacket. Indeed who needs guns...not to mention the ammo that you would need to drag around; b.o.r.i.n.g and space consuming :p

    I just tagged unarmed at lvl12 for 150% pt boost so it's pretty much end of the world for the denizens of the wasteland...fucking hilarious to watch, oversatisfying to play and waaaaaay better than any power armor shmower armor.

    So, it's not just unarmed but also unharmed...I think I'll play a non-combat diplo char nxt, when I'm done with the spear festivities :)

    Keeping the awesome awesome 8-)
  18. Nark

    Nark Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Dec 6, 2008
    Mmm... Mega Power Fist, my favourite. Seriously, I love unarmed/melee weapons. With my 120% Unarmed weapons in FO2 it is even more awesome.
  19. fallout_fan

    fallout_fan It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Sep 11, 2008
    I always use guns in Fallout 1 and 2. Im not big on unarmed or melee. The appeal of Fallout to me is guns. Its like someone said on this one forum, who buys KOTOR and doesnt want to use a Lightsaber? I use one. Same with guns. If I wanted to use Melee weapons on I would play Morrowing, Arx Fatalis, Kotor 1 and 2, Baldurs Gate on ps2.
  20. Panker_u_sakou_starom

    Panker_u_sakou_starom It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Jul 16, 2009
    You don't like challenges do you? :|