There was once a time when I hated RPGs and just wanted simple linear games. I have of course changed a lot and I have really grown to love RPGs, however there is one aspect I always hate when starting a new game for the first time. Talent trees can be a nightmare at first. For those who have played a lot of games, you will understand the stress of making sure you are aware of all possible branches and skills in order to make sure you get the best outcome for your character. No matter what way I ever try to look at it, RPG talent trees are stressful and It is something I always hate about starting off with a new game.
For those who have played a few RPGs in the past, you will likely understand the frustration. You are 50 or so hours into the game and you realise that a skill you purchased early on in the game, back when you didn’t know any better, was actually a complete waste. Not only was it a waste of a valuable point, but it may have also locked you out of obtaining a more valuable skill that you now need/want. Some RPGs are more forgiving and with enough effort you can fully level everything, meaning you never get locked out of something, but we are not always so fortunate. Quite a lot of games have far more skills to unlock than you will ever earn points to purchase, meaning if you screw this up, you will be spending the rest of the game dealing with the mistake. Since RPGs tend to be incredibly long, a few screw ups like this really impact things for a long time.
A recent example of the talent tree stress was with Dragon Age: Inquisition. This game has a talent tree system for each character which means the complication and stress is multiplied by 4. It is hard enough to keep all of the skills you need for 1 character in your head. Having to make sure you remember which skills you wanted to purchase for each of the 4 character was a bit of a pain. Each time characters level up, I was spending a few minutes going back over all the skills for each character to remember things. I really needed to keep some kind of log book to manage this game.
Unless you look up guide or advice from someone else who has completed the game, there is always the risk of picking bad skills. For some this might be part of the fun, but I want the PERFECT character. So this does bother me when I know I have picked a bad skill. I’m definitely going to need to come up with a better way of managing my skills and characters in future.