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illegal abilities on NPCs - how do you feel about them?

typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702
Edwin's extra spells.
Minscs beserk ability.
Coran's extra bow proficiency.
Aerie's illegal multi-class combo.

... What do you think is all right for an NPC to have?

I'm sure I left out some options: there's an 'other', though! :D
(Also I couldn't find the older thread on this... sorry! n.n')

illegal abilities on NPCs - how do you feel about them? 356 votes

No - NPCs shouldn't have any abilities that I can't have with my character
1%
MorrandirrLapaBanexPalanthisLateralusEntropyXII 6 votes
No - if the NPC is an illegal class combo (eg. elf cleric/mage)
0%
Xereck 1 vote
Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
30%
MarkosMERLANCEO_BruceMontresor_SPAedanShYarivDrugarsabacs90JoeySethDavisMiridorGemHoundFrecheCoutelierKratoktatokagrisAvenger_teambgCorvinoSvendryn 109 votes
Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
62%
TingelaqzinaJorkanMoonsongsmeagolheartIchigoRXCSpjuv3rnScooterBelgarathMTHSliceofhellJacesarevok5710thLichlunarscriverShrimpAramintaiKriegerYemethelminster 223 votes
-other-
4%
MartySilverbladeMornmagorSceptenarJalilySCARY_WIZARDrandyrooKaltzormarrowjGodchbrooksBattlehamsterAyiekielroumenKnellerGamingFreakDoorDieIorya 17 votes
JuliusBorisovGemHoundnanoAristillius
«1345

Comments

  • atcDaveatcDave Member Posts: 1,933
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    I wouldn't want to see the abilities be unbalancing; that is, too strong.

    But I think its awesome to assign the occasional odd benefit to a character.
    This is well in keeping with PNP tradition, but is so hard to translate into a computer game. Impossible really for the PC, but at least a few of the NPCs can have something a little different and special.

    KolonKuTaffy
  • typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    @Morte50 You must also like Fallout's characters. :D It's pretty fun to have a team including a giant (mutant) who can't wear armour and even a raptor. >:3


    I know that not everyone likes how superior Edwin's spellcasting is. That's the biggest complaint against unique abilities I can remember. *-) Funny, but I don't think I've heard that complaint leveled often against Viconia's magic resistance. Or is that why there's a push for a drow option for CHARNAME?

  • thespacethespace Member Posts: 1,039
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    Coran seems over powered...the rest are fine

  • Morte50Morte50 Member Posts: 161
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    @typo_tilly
    I must admit that I still haven't tried Fallout. Shameful I know, it's been on my to-do list for ages, but somehow I never seem to get to actually doing that. Maybe when Fallout:EE comes out... :-).

    I think part of the problem with Edwin's ability, apart from being rather overpowered (especially with his enormous drawback of not being able to cast *gasp* divination spells), is that it's rather arbitrary. There is no real backstory or flavour to it. That actually applies to most of the extra abilities/equipment, they're just kind of tacked on without any explanation. BG2 is quite a bit better in that regard. Jan Jansen's vast array of weird equipment is both useful and very flavourful.

  • TressetTresset Member, Moderator Posts: 7,952
    On one hand, I kinda like what they bring to the game. On the other hand they make charname look bad at times. If I want to be the same class as one of these "illegal" characters I would get a bit annoyed that they can do things that I can't. I would love my charname blackguard to be a 19 strength 19 constitution half-orc. The worst one is probably how my sorcerer can only learn 5 level 1 spells, 4 level 2 spells, 3 level 3 spells, and 2 level 4 spells while a certain other sorcerer can learn 8 level 1 spells, 7 level 2 spells, 6 level 3 spells and 2 level 4 spells. Cheap!!!!!!

    EntropyXII
  • 10thLich10thLich Member Posts: 99
    edited August 2013
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    Edwin's extra spells
    At least in DnD 3/3.5 there's an explanation for it, and I bet ADnD has something similar. He's a red wizard of Thay and in 3/3.5 red wizard is a prestige class, which increases your spells per day at the cost of another forbidden spell school.

    In BG 1/2 he gets the benefit of this simulated ability but not its downsides.

    DragonspearSpaceInvaderArchaos
  • the_spyderthe_spyder Member Posts: 5,018
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    they add flavor to the character. I am more interested in the role playing anyway, so as long as they have interesting personalities it's all good. Beyond that, unique (not necessarily illegal) abilities per character just fleshes out they characters. Plus, the fact that they have abilities that Charname can't have just means that there is yet another reason to bring them along. After all, you could simply make a Charname with any given class/ability combination otherwise. It's all good.

  • Awong124Awong124 Member Posts: 2,643
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    Charname gets special abilities as well, so it's not like the game is being unfair.

    JuliusBorisov
  • O_BruceO_Bruce Member Posts: 2,763
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    Those abilities are cool, they make NPCs more unique. But, I don't like them, when they are making an NPC too strong. For example, It is cool for Edwin to have a one more spell per level, but having two is just too much. And he doesn't have any weakness that could make up for this.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,198
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    I believe that giving NPCs illegal or at least unusual abilities can add a lot of flavor. Of course, it has to be done right, and in moderation; Minsc is a great example, as his Rage ability plays perfectly with his personality.

    There are limits, though. Some benefits are just blatantly too powerful - Edwin is a prime example. While it does make sense for him to be a "super specialist" mage (as Red Wizards tend to be), the implementation is not quite balanced enough. I suspect that that the downsides associated with his proficiency were too difficult to code, and so he was just given his Super Imba Necklace of Doom as a compromise. Not very elegant, and a bit annoying.

    As for illegal class/race combinations, those are usually far less dramatic of an issue as they might seem. In fact, it would have been cool to see more flavor there - Viconia as an actual Cleric of Shar, for example, or a quest line to make Mazzy an actual Paladin. Those aren't exactly big violations, and balance-wise don't usually pose much of a problem; especially in BG2, where some of the class bonuses (like shorty saves) have less of an impact.

    Palanthis
  • zur312zur312 Member Posts: 1,366
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    even something like edwin special +1 spell or some artifact special for NPC it is his flavor it drives me toward that npc so YES

    and they are basicly always some dwarbacks of npc like aerie has low con

    viconia low con

    edwin low dex

    mazzy is pretty medicore fighter

    minsc is i think 6 stats short from perfect

    etc. kensai/mage berserker/druid berserker/thief max stats paladins those are OP characters and those few npc "bonuses" are sometimes not even worth mentioning in terms of power level

    i think the strongest is edwin and he has no drawbacks (almost)

  • elementelement Member Posts: 833
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    i mostly only care about it fitting the character. The only real exceptions would be if the power is way too good or in some way impedes the abilitie to rp

  • ZanathKariashiZanathKariashi Member Posts: 2,867
    edited August 2013
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    *picked the wrong choice, AGAIN*

    Except halfings cannot be paladins, ever. They can aspire to the ideal, but can never actually be the class itself which is a uniquely human convention.

    Coran's mastery in bows is illegal and should be removed (it's enough benefit that's he's gotten one of the rare and precious dex manuals at some point before our meeting).

    Edwin was a little more balanced when his necklace only gave bonus spells to levels 1 and 2. When they added them to 3+ later, that was too much. (especially since Conjurors are much more powerful in BG then they should be due to getting access to Evocation, which is their primary opposed school in PnP due to divination being too important for a mage to function at all to fully lose access to (they're only disallowed spells 5th and above, which by core books is 3 total spells lost...only truesight being remotely useful).

    Aerie is less of a concern since she's is valid for her real sub-race.


    Eldoth's poison arrow ability is fine. If NCP were implemented, anyone could learn to make them (though those with rogue pool access could so for normal proficiency cost).

    Viconia is fine as is class-wise. Her lack of bonuses just means she's a generic cleric of shar, instead of a Mythos Priest. Her magic resistance though needs to go. Mechanically it should be 0 given how long she's by her own admission, been away from the Underdark. It only takes 3 1/2 months to completely remove a drow's magic resistance. And takes an equal amount of time spent in the Underdark to return to full strength. (10% per week, either way). (or implement the drow's innate 20% experience penalty, that they have at all times even if they've lost all their special abilities from faeress withdrawal).

    Anomen though has no excuse. He is completely illegal. Even if he passes his knight test he STILL doesn't have enough Wisdom to dual-class to a cleric. And should actually has a 5% spell failure penalty due to having 12 wisdom (divine magic requires 13+ to have no failure chance).

    Minsc at least has the excuse that his reduced wisdom is result of his head-wound after the fact (though he should still have a 20% divine spell failure penalty for low wisdom)...Anomen has no such excuse.

    Faldorn is fine, and is actually closer to working like a druid should then the friggin player is. Druids are supposed to start getting animal followers at level 1 (but is capped to total HD no higher then their druid level).


    @10thlich
    Red wizards do not get bonus spells. The only bonus spells they get are the +1 per spell level from being a specialist mage, which is required to be a red wizard.

    Depending on the edition they either have harder save DC+caster level (3.0), or just a flat +caster level bonus (3.5). Beyond that, they get a up to +4 save bonus vs spells of their school used against them, and the ability to use circle magic. And as a penalty they lose an extra school and just like normal opposed school rules, CANNOT choose divination because it's essential to function as a mage. Non-diviner specialists lose a total of 3 schools to be red wizards (2 from specialization, 1 from RW), while diviners only lose 2 (1 from specialization, 1 from RW).

    Post edited by ZanathKariashi on
    blackchimes10thLich
  • ogrebogreb Member Posts: 98
    You left one option out of your poll.

    I don't find any of their abilities ( or multi class ) out of place.
    Like others have said it is more about playing a story, then wondering why a fighter has a berserker ability ( Which I never used ) Or why a wingless elf can be an " illegal" class..
    It just adds to the flavor.

    It's Faerun...anything is possible,

    the_spydersarevok57JuliusBorisov
  • MathmickMathmick Member Posts: 326
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    'Illegal' attributes and special abilities can add mechanics which parallel a characters personality, making you 'believe' the character more:

    The most clear example of this is Minsc. He's a ranger, and rangers aren't supposed to berserk. However, he's also a nutjob who enjoys killing for the greater good, and his ability to berserk reflect that. Even if you were to never activate this ability, having it there enhances the value of Minsc as a character. It has more-or-less the same effect as having Boo in the quick-slot.

    A lesser, but also well-known example of this is Edwin. Edwin is a mage constantly claiming both openly and to himself that he superior to every being in the history of the universe. Of course, having someone start that powerful would ruin game balance quickly. What the developers did was give him excellent primary attributes and bonus spells. Having all of this showcases his potential to be powerful, and having him join you allows him to progress to be powerful later on (both in BG and BG2).

    Other examples of this include Viconia (MR from race), Aerie (Class + Religion from Quayle), Alora (Lucky Charm suits personality), and Mazzy (Paladin-ish skills).

    There are examples that don't fit, such as Kagain, arguably Tiax and arguably Coran. However, a large number of characters with these special abilities and 'illegal' attributes do have some kind of reason for these abilities that enhances their character. Sometimes, the character only having an ability adds something, even if the ability isn't useful to you.

    KolonKu
  • WanderonWanderon Member Posts: 1,418
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    Like many others I see this as a way to make the NPCs unique and even if the "specialness" is exceptionally strong (IMO) I am perfectly capable of deciding when or if I deem it appropriate to use it in game.

  • PalanthisPalanthis Member Posts: 283
    edited August 2013
    No - NPCs shouldn't have any abilities that I can't have with my character
    If i'm ok with certain abilitie,s like Aerie's multiclass, i'm always skeptical about Edwin, Coran or Baeloth. I mean that's something that's not really fitting in their background, contrary to Aerie's heritage or Minsc ' craziness.

    Plus, even if we want to give some extra spells to an NPC, i really think the devs were a bit too generous on Edwin especially.
    You know, his special amulet / ring (i don't remember) is so powerful that even magical items of TOB are weaker in this regard. And in "my" ADD rules, no Red Wizard can have so many spells, especially when they're level 1.
    As a matter of fact, i never take him because i really feel like using some cheat when i'm using him.

    EDIT : hmm, seems like i should have voted "Yes - provided the abilities aren't too strong"... I'm really ok with a few special abilities, and actually would like to see more of them, as long as they're not unbalanced.

  • Morte50Morte50 Member Posts: 161
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    They really ought to implement the IWD opposition schools. I always found that to be a bit more balanced anyway, and it would also help make Edwin slightly less powerful (no more spamming large quantities of Magic Missile, for one).

  • GoodSteveGoodSteve Member Posts: 607
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    I'm all for some special qualities for NPC's to make them shine or give them a little perk or something special to make them stand out as long as that is all that it is. Some of the "perks" are much better than they should be such as Dorn's ability to be a Blackguard with 19 strength at level 1 with what amounts to a +2 sword or Edwins amulet. I personally never end up playing evil aligned mages anymore because come SoA and ToB when you're starved for evil NPC's you bring along edwin and he outshines charname, don't seem right.

  • BaldursCatBaldursCat Member Posts: 432
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong


    As for illegal class/race combinations, those are usually far less dramatic of an issue as they might seem. In fact, it would have been cool to see more flavor there - Viconia as an actual Cleric of Shar

    This is an interesting point. Maybe my experience applies more to 3E but it would have been interesting if the priest spells were more specialised in terms the deities granting them.

  • MilesBeyondMilesBeyond Member Posts: 324

    Those abilities are cool, they make NPCs more unique. But, I don't like them, when they are making an NPC too strong. For example, It is cool for Edwin to have a one more spell per level, but having two is just too much. And he doesn't have any weakness that could make up for this.

    Yeah, I agree. Having Edwin get three bonus spells per level (1 from being Spec Mage, 2 from being Edwin) is insane. Especially at higher levels. Four level 9 spells as soon as you hit level 18? Unreal. Time Stop + Shapechange = everything dead. The enemy is immune to Timestop? Oh crap, too bad we don't have a third level 9 slot to cast Absolute Immunity. Oh wait, we do.

  • ThaleThale Member Posts: 5
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    I guess so long as it's appropriate for the character, like Mazzy. Aerie's multi-class hardly affects gameplay at all, so it doesn't matter. I wouldn't even have noticed it was illegal if no one pointed it out.

  • typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702
    edited August 2013
    Yes - provided I don't think the abilities are too strong
    hmm n_n Half of voters think the strength of the abilities doesn't matter. Interesting :D

    Wow. I never knew how ridiculously powerful Edwin was. (I don't play Evil.) o_o Is he even superior to sorceror's in spells per day? :/

    As for CHARNAME's abilities... they are useful, but you can't even keep them the entire game. ._.

    EDIT -
    Feature request for giving back CHARNAME's powers:
    http://forum.baldursgate.com/discussion/20595/request-return-bhaal-powers-in-tob

    SCARY_WIZARD
  • SouthpawSouthpaw Member Posts: 2,026
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong
    Even though they are sometimes overpowered (Coran's 3 pips in bows, Edwin's spells, Viconia's magic resistance) ... I think they add character and flavour to NPCs. Even if some of them are quirky (Minsc's hamster and class (Ranger imitating a Berserker)) it still beats having generic (spell "boring") NPCs.

    MortiannaJuliusBorisov
  • the_spyderthe_spyder Member Posts: 5,018
    Yes - even if I think the abilities are strong

    CHARNAME also gets special skills (and a lot more of them than the NPC's). I don't really understand the fuss.

    not to mention the fact that Charname has a bunch more story line associated than any other NPC (the entire plot is about him/her) and if Charname dies, the game ends. Not so with others in the group. This to me makes him/her pretty darned special all on their own (not to mention Slayer and the other abilities and bonuses that you get throughout the course of the game).

    JuliusBorisov
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