I just recently finished TFN with my second character, now having played a Setite and a Baali.
I admit, I don't actually have a question, but a few (correction: a lot of) thoughts and comments on the new features I'd like to share.
First I have to say that I enjoyed The Final Nights a lot
The new clans are really nice, so are the Disciplines. And most of the new extras, actually. Havong a high Haggle feat really pays off, and a mediocre Inspection feat already gives you a huge advantage.
The Follower of Set was really fun playing. All levels of Serpentis pay off nicely - and taking your own heart out, it really reminded me of Redemption where you had to find the hidden heart of the Setites' leader
Oh, and the cape is awesome, it looks so... snake-ish
Single opponent's barely stand a chance against the Setite, and crowd control is very easy. Eyes of the Serpent as a classic mesmerizing Discipline is incredibly useful in the beginning and only gets better while you advance in the game. Breathe the Sandstorm distracts groups of enemies and deals huge damage to supernaturals. I didnt like Apep's Semblance much at first, but after improving my Physical stats it turned out to be really nice. Paranoia is _the Discipline for killing mobs of gangsters and even groups of Sabbat vampires. Heart of Darkness, at last, renders you virtually indestructible, you can combine it with level 3 or just use your favourite gun to take out - well, whoever is trying to shoot, hit or stake you. I had the problem, though, that at some point the Serpentis claws wouldn't disappear from my inventory anymore, even after changing back. Naturally I couldn't use them while in human shape, and I couldn't use my hands while Apep's Semblance was active, but I ended up with both of them taking up room in my inventory at the same time.
Well, the point I wanted to make: Serpentis often seemed a little overpowered. I admit I concentrated on the new Disciplines very early since they were probably the most interesting part of the game and I therefore quickly had access to the high levels, but still... I casted the Sandstorm a couple of times on the Gargoyle while using level 1 to bounce it back and the monster collapsed within minutes without me even touching it. Got even worse when I reached Ming-Xiao - way over 200 damage from a level 2 discipline? No need for a flame thrower there. In addition, Paranoia even made Andrei in his warform
hide away in a corner, and it just didn't seem right to be an invincible heartless snake-shaped blood buffed monster and
still being able to cast Paranoia in addition. See my point?
As for the Baali: Even with the new Frenzy system, a max Humanity of seven barely counts as Flaw. They tend to have a low humanity anyway, I dropped down to 3 / 4 very quickly and kept it at that level. Except for frenzying twice
while fighting Bach, I generally had no problems with the Beast. Gaining extra experience though seemed to be a huge advantage. I mean, I had to invest XP to stay human enough not to be beheaded by the Sheriff and developed my stats similar to the way I did with my Setite - and still somehow I had enough XP left to raise Presence to level 3 or 4 in the Endgame instead of just ignoring it (as my Setite had to - maybe for the better, imagine an invincible heartless snake-shaped blood buffed monster with Presence 4 and
). On the other hand, though, Daimoinon was not all that great a Discipline. Level 1 was useful with the lone bums of Downtown but not at all in Santa Monica, level 2 a weaker version of Serpentis level 1 ( O.o ), the fireballs again worked quite well to distract enemies while dealing considerable damage to supernaturals - but level 4, despite the impressive animation, was disturbingly useless since all hard enemies were able to resist it without taking damage worth mentioning, either because of their holy auras or their supernatural nature. The same for Concordance: It looked impressive, and I noticed I could take more hits - but it didn't seem to be that much better than Apep's Semblance which also raised your Soaking feats - and that was Serpentis level 3, not 5.
So much for the clans I tried. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed them. I seriously think TFN is the best Bloodlines mod I've played so far. The character desings are fantastic, especially the Setite's coat and the Baali's red suit - damn, that guy looks evil
Not to mention Akeem and Ox selling all the interesting stuff ^^
The hunter at Skyeline appartments was a great idea and exceptionally hard an enemy, in my opinion. Though they seemd to be stronger I didn't have trouble killing Vick and his plaguebearers, but that guy gave me hell a lot of times, no matter which clan I played
The Serial Killer also was much more fun this time. As I already wrote in a different thread, my Baali was able to just burn him to ashes, but during my first game as a Setite it was about the last thing I took care of before entering the Warrens and finishing the Hollywood part - and I really had to give all I had to bring him Final Death.
And the Tremere Antitribu - hell, you can't just hide and shoot her, and if you want to kill her in Melee you have to run through two walls of fire so that she just has to hit you with the DEagle two or three times and you're offed. Nice trick you did there, the original Tremere was not much of a challenge at all. If I remember correctly, the guy didn't even defend himself if you hit him right in the face.
Adding additional adversaries to the Bloodhunt level was a good idea, too. The ones using high level Celerity are really tricky, especially since for me they usually attacked both at the same time. (I just don't think that the Tire Iron or the Baseball Bat are appropriate weapons to be used at that stage of game.)
Generally most opponents seem to have become stronger - or at least to have increased in number. I'm sure that this time there were more burnig SM ghouls at Grout's mansion, more of those small Tzimisce abominations, more Sabbat vampires at Hallowbrook and even more people walking the streets, thus making it more difficult to feed in public.
The Antitribu at the warehouse and LaCroix's cleaners were nice too, but you might want to make them a little stronger. Ore cleverer. When I first encountered the Toreador I was really running for the door he comes through, I attacked him with the Katana and just didn't stop so he was dead before he even knew what hit him. I didn't even get to see his health bar
The Baali tried a more subtle approach, but still - the shotgun is dangerous, yes, but by the time you fight him you already have the Katana, the very precise Glock and of course an Ithaca of your own, so he didn't seem to be a real threat to me. The cleaners' problem is that they seperate too easily. As soon as a shot is fired in the hallway one of them will leave the room and try to find you - which really is a stupid idea. For the second one I just walked in and shot him. Me standing in the door with the Steyr Aug, he in front of the elevator with the Spaz. Let's say, in retrospective it doesn't seem to have been a fair battle at all. I'm sure it would be tough fighting both at the same time, it just didn't happen to me.
A few things really bothered me, though.
Maybe I just had already collected some of the items he offered, but Mr Ox only had 3 items in stock for me. Not what I expected, even considering that 4 items are hidden in the hubs (which one usually won't find anyway) there still should be enough of them left to spend a fortune in that shop.
Then - why did I get the Key of Alamut from Isaac? O.o I mean, there's an Assamite trader of rare books and weapons, a special trader for the occult and a flesh eating Nagaraja with a text line telling me I'd get that very item - and it's that suit-wearing Toreador who gives it to me? Don't get it, sorry. (I think it's clear I never liked Isaac much, anyway xD)
Saddest, maybe, is that the special havens seem to be lost with their specific clans. Even though a Baali usually succeeds in posing as a Tremere, having comparable powers and being related to them, I wasn't offered a place to stay by Strauss. I suppose it's the same for the Nosferatu heaven. Sure, they won't accept just anybody living in the chantry, but one could try and think of special quests or something similar that would make Gary and / or Strauss offer you these havens. Maybe if you chose to side with the Camarilla (for chantry haven) or to be a loner (for Nosferatu haven), though that would be a little late in the game. I admit I have no idea if it's even possible to make the game grant you access to these areas with a fully functional PC and everything when you obviously don't belong there.
Sneaking still is too easy. With a Sneaking feat of 7 nobody
noticed me unless I crouched right beside a huge spotlight, not even when I stealth killed the person they were talking to at the very moment. On the other hand, Obfuscate 2 already renders sneaking unnecessary. Not sure how to compensate for that though.
Oh, and the Sheriff... no changes made to him, I think? He's still too easily fooled by the player just running up and down the stairs and burning him with the flame thrower. And there were no vampires on the roof during the fight against his Marauder form, I'm not sure if that's supposed to be that way.
Wow, this comment became quite an essay. I hope you can appreciate the praise as well as the criticism.
It is quite impressive to see people working that hard on a game which has been published years ago, I'm sure a lot of people are just as grateful as I am