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Hey everyone! I am a newbie to “Tales of Maj’Eyal, and I have some questions that might shed a bit of light on it. Does this game have a strong storyline, or is it more “hack and slash”? Is there much grinding to be successful with gameplay? What are the maps like – are they random or preset? Is there much replayability? I did some reading, and found out that, even though Tales of Maj’Eyal is single player, there are some multiplayer options too. I have no clue what that means, so I figured I would ask. Also, what does making an online account do for me as a player?
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1) I'd call the storyline of TOME convoluted at best. At worst, as bad as the art that appears between menus and loading. To divvy it into something, I would say the story of Tome consists of three parts: The distant past (Necromancers, Spellblaze, etc), Factions, and Now.

The past of the world of TOME is as I vaguely understand is one where magic ran free, and Necromancers were a major faction at the time. Then the Spellblaze happened which piledrove the world into a dark age, which it only recently recovered from.

Now, there's basically rumbings of a "bad thing", so you depart from wherever and according factionally, go to deal with said bad.

The factions as such can be divided according to the classes and starting locations, but basically:

Magic, Antimagic, Time Mages, Undead, and the Yeeks.

Basically the undead want everything dead, the Yeeks are weird ewoks, and the Magic/AntiMagic factions butt heads regularly. And Time Mages exist outside of time and typically work to make sure the continuity doesn't get unraveled or something.

Oh, and there's an extra story campaign in the DLC involving the aftermath but dismissive spluttering.

2) Is Tome4 beginner friendly?

Heck no.

Tome4 has these fantastic multifaceted problems. It has too many stats and yet has no idea how to present them in a human readable way, the majority of players are playing on the massively overtuned Insane difficulty, and a good number of classes suck to the point of complete non-usability.

Also, several of the better classes and races have unlocking criteria so absurdly esoteric as to completely ruin the point of attempting them.

3) Grinding in TOME4 is nigh impossible. In the actual game campaign, dungeons will get cleared out and remain that way; plus they'll spawn enemies attuned to your level upon entry. And in the other game modes, there's no way to grind either; except maybe if you do something dangerous and breach a vault.

4) The overworld is preset except for the location of optional dungeons which will throw themselves wherever they feel like it. The actual dungeons are procedurally cobbled.

5) The multiplayer component of TE4 is completely unknown to me.

6) Replayability. Depends. Do you like infinite dungeons, testing out builds in the arena, or tying different classes? Then yes. If you're only going though the story, then absolutely not.

Thankfully, there are mods which can fix two of the

problems I've pointed out.
Post edited October 24, 2020 by Darvond
Gavindale: Does this game have a strong storyline, or is it more “hack and slash”?
Compared to most rogue-likes, I'd consider the storyline quite strong but most of it is gained via scrolls that you have to purchase or find. The main plot doesn't really come into play until you have completed Dreadfell (for most classes).

The Forbidden Cults expansion plays on the "distant history" storyline with a couple of books that transport you to mini-scenarios where you play out portions of that history.
Gavindale: Is there much grinding to be successful with gameplay?
Yes, in the sense that there are a lot of levels that have to be got through (Dreadfell has 8 for example). No, in the sense that there is a level cap (50) after which you cannot improve your character any further (there is an addon Adjustable Levelup which lets you increase that level cap to as high as 1,000 - plus lots of other things - but you have to install and configure it before starting a new game).
Gavindale: What are the maps like – are they random or preset?
Dungeons are random, towns and the wilderness/overland map are fixed. A few dungeons have random locations on the wilderness map and some have only a percentage change of appearing when you reach a certain level (these tend to be related to the expansions).
Gavindale: Is there much replayability?
In theory, yes. Aside from the randomised dungeons, you have numerous hidden (some too well hidden) classes to unlock and a good few of these provide slight plot variations as Darvond has noted, as well as different play styles. However the developer seems to spend most of his time balancing (and re-balancing) classes between versions, so what works in the current game release may be borked in an update.
Gavindale: I did some reading, and found out that, even though Tales of Maj’Eyal is single player, there are some multiplayer options too. I have no clue what that means, so I figured I would ask.
The only "multiplayer" options relate to publishing your character stats and score online. You can't form teams so I would suggest this makes the game single-player only.
Gavindale: Also, what does making an online account do for me as a player?
Aside from the opportunity to publicise your dazzling victories (or more likely, embarrassing mistakes) you can purchase cosmetic addons or make further donations (if you feel the price you paid wasn't enough). Probably the most significant benefit is the ability to increase the size of your Vault (you'll need to discover a special location to get this) which allows you to transfer items between characters. The GOG version of Tales allows you to store 3 items in the Vault.
I find this game rather new gamer friendly.

The real question is : Does one want to play for the Big Thrills and choose Permadeath, or not?

This is what I've been exploring mostly and it is certainly not very new gamer friendly for example, when you reach level 10 after hours of playing and then it's all gone when you just encounter a new monster that has some weird hard attacks that wipe you out within a few turns - you'll get your stats on a wall to remember the fallen hero(ine) but then it's all back to creating a new character (or choose the same startup you just had.)

To multiplayer : you can tune in the options the chat messages from a couple of different channels where both the game itself lists things that are happening live now to other players, and also you can turn on death messages of others, and various other things that are happening in others' games, also you can chat with other gamers if you wish, and ask tips even. In my experience there have been at least some veterans who can give you good advice while you are playing.
But no real co-op (for now at least.)

I got all the DLC and they do add some new classes, and also another areas, lore and stuff.

The lore in the main game really takes a long time to really start opening up. The game is mostly hack and slash for sure. But the first startup area normally is quite easy - you just hit the arrow keys or click with mouse until you are level two, distribute points and that already teaches you a bit. And then try not to die in the first boss :D

And then you start to appreciate the game when you learn there are so many strategies to take into consideration if you want to live past a few other dungeons :)
Post edited April 04, 2021 by superstande