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Teach me how to Wild Mage

I've now beaten BGEE twice with Neera in the party, and both times she's just been there for testing/uniqueness/new content. I haven't gotten much actual combat use out of her.

I expect this is my fault: I'm basically using her as a gimped specialist mage. I teach her every scroll, play her like a mage, and hope that the wild surges aren't too negative. I occasionally got lucky (Area of Effect Stoneskin right before the Durlag's Tower Demon Knight was quite nice!), but for the most part she was a decent mage that occasionally fireballed herself.

I made no attempt to learn how to properly utilize Nashal's (sp?) Reckless Dweomer or the Chaos Shield spells. Is there a good way to utilize them, either in BG1 or BG2?



  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,198
    It's easier in BG2 where you can "cheat" out high level spells way before/in greater numbers than you should be able to. You can do it in BG1, too, but the maximum level spells you are getting there aren't as powerful as the ones in BG2.

  • elminsterelminster Member, Developer Posts: 16,206
    I normally just use Chaos shield as a preventive measure in the event that I do happen to hit the normal 5% chance of getting a wild surge.

  • KaigenKaigen Member Posts: 1,567
    Also, since you get a level-based bonus to your wild surge roll when using Nahal's, it becomes easier in BG2 to push that roll up into the beneficial results (including the ones where the spell you are trying to cast actually happens).

  • smeagolheartsmeagolheart Member Posts: 7,962
    I don't know how to wild mage either. I usually ignore the class so any guides would be guideful er any help would be helpful

  • nanonano Member Posts: 1,632
    It's hard to use her power at low levels since it scales with level. The level 7 shield makes a big difference as well. Maybe you could send her in alone and have her spam every Nahal's hoping to gate in a demon, then come in and raise her :)

    In BG2, once you've eliminated most of the bad rolls they're amazingly powerful; sort of like a combination sorceror/mage where the sorceror half has permanent improved alacrity.

  • SilverstarSilverstar Member Posts: 2,206
    edited October 2013
    Am I the only one who uses Nahal's Reckless Dweomer spesifcally to get the wild surges? I think they're a lot of fun, some exceptions aside, but those I can cure with the spell Quick Load.

    To answer the question though, Nahal's etc. is a good way to cast spells you have scribed but aren't high enough level to cast yet, like the others said, but it's also handy for casting spells you -rarely- cast and thus don't walk around having memorized; I use it a lot for Clairvoyance. Invisibility for when scouting is an idea is another fine use. Though quick saving before using Nahal's etc. in this manner is highly recommended of course ;)

  • lunarlunar Member Posts: 3,410
    You can try to cast higher level spells in your spell book via Nahal's reckless dweomer.

    Say, you are a lvl 1 wild mage and has procured a cloudkill scroll and scribed it into your book. You know have a general understanding of how the spell works, but you are not powerful enough to memorise and cast it. You can cast Nahal's Reckless Dweomer and try to shape a cloud kill spell. It will give you a bonus to your wild surge roll, which is a mere +%1 at lvl 1, which does not help much. You can end up casting the spell via 'spell cast twice, spell cast and I feel refreshed, spell cast no save, wrong target, +4 to save, area effect, caster also targeted' surges if you are lucky. These are surges that succesfuly cast the spell, so it is possible to cast the spell with %10 chance, although it will be a little quirky. And deadly, in the case of a cloudkill that also targets the caster. Other %90 of the surges will be different things that has nothing to do with the spell you were trying to cast, ie:color change, sex change, burst, petrification, cow falls, gems appear, demon gates in etc.

  • OperativeNLOperativeNL Member Posts: 146
    edited October 2013
    Later in BG2 it is possible to "buff up" a wild mage with so many bonuses to the wild surges that they can use the lvl 1 spell to cast any high level spell they have read a scroll of.

    In BG1 they are mostly an "ohgodohgodpleasedontsurge" kinda character. Unless you like playing a competely yellow-coloured, sex-changed, hiccuping, cow-tossing, deamon-gating happy-colours-twirling-around low level mage that is.

  • mylegbigmylegbig Member Posts: 292
    If you don't mind reloading a lot, in BG1 you can use Reckless Dweomer to wipe out almost anything with Cloudkill.

  • the_spyderthe_spyder Member Posts: 5,018
    On a tangent here, does anyone know if Chaos shield helps/hinders/effects that area in Watcher's Keep where there are wild magic fields?

  • ZarakinthishZarakinthish Member Posts: 214
    When I used Neera in my last game, she was the designated wand and scroll user. Besides the fact that there is plenty enough money to keep her from casting from her memorized spells, once she had dart proficiency she joined the missile barrage team. The need to cast spells in the first game is fairly limited, so keeping Neera out of trouble was fairly easy. I can't wait to really see Neera shine in the second game where I can set her loose instead of hold her back.

  • jhneohjhneoh Member Posts: 42
    Neera is a great general-purpose mage in BG1. She has the bonus spell slot without the penalty of an opposing school, and the 5% chance to wild surge really isnt that much. Typically I just play her as a normal mage and hope the wild surges aren't too bad.

    Edwin may have an additional spell slot over Neera but he can't cast Identify, which is pretty damn annoying.

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 21,449

    When I used Neera in my last game, she was the designated wand and scroll user. Besides the fact that there is plenty enough money to keep her from casting from her memorized spells

    Actually, a Wild Surge can happen not only when casting from the memorized spells but also when casting from scrolls. It has happened to me many times.

  • KnellerKneller Member Posts: 432
    edited October 2013
    minutus said:

    I still keep a Nahal or two as a last resort option...

    With my Wild Mage, that's pretty much all I have in my 1st level slots. :)

  • AranthysAranthys Member Posts: 714
    Step 1 : Cast spell
    Step 2 : ?????
    Step 3 : Reload

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,611
    Won't Neera herself along with every good and neutral character leave your party if she slaughters a town and brings your reputation to minimum?

    If so, trying to play a minimal reload where you make yourself live with most of the consequences of her surges won't work, if the worst happens.

    What I've always thought kind of ironic and silly, is that Neera will leave over her own wild surge.

    "Whoops, I just Fireballed the town square, and 14 commoners died! You're a terrible leader - I'm out of here!"

  • nanonano Member Posts: 1,632
    @belgarathmth Well, she blames you for making her cast spells in populated areas when you knew what the consequences could be. She wants a leader who can work around her issues!

  • KaigenKaigen Member Posts: 1,567

    Won't Neera herself along with every good and neutral character leave your party if she slaughters a town and brings your reputation to minimum?

    If so, trying to play a minimal reload where you make yourself live with most of the consequences of her surges won't work, if the worst happens.

    What I've always thought kind of ironic and silly, is that Neera will leave over her own wild surge.

    "Whoops, I just Fireballed the town square, and 14 commoners died! You're a terrible leader - I'm out of here!"

    Well, considering her reaction to her first wild surge was to immediately run away from home and never return, it makes a certain kind of sense (though I doubt her dialog matches up with that)

  • syllogsyllog Member Posts: 158
    edited December 2013
    Wild Mages = FUN
    But for no reload (which also = FUN (&fun)) I wouldn't want it on a PC.
    Unless I Dualed from Berserker --> Wild Mage (ShadowKeeper)
    The biggest killer for me was "Caster Held" result. There's 2 or 3 of them in the table. They offer no save and bypassed any protections I had like Free Action or Chaotic Commands, to my memory. Petrify is a (less likely) killer too...

    Early Contingencies/Sequencers = Awesome
    (to de bug the cast just cast another spell until it succeeds then reload right before that and make it your sequencer/contingency spell)

    TimeStops with level 1 spells = Awesome

    Accidental Demons = Awesome

    Inability to work around eventually fatal randomness on no-reload PC = :'(
    Wish luck/chant removed random wild surges...

    Pre-EE Wild Surge Table:'s_Gate:_Wild_Surge_Table
    Note: 2 "Caster Held" Options. first <15 second <25
    3 "Target Held" Options.

    Oh, KEY wild mage advice : *Target the Enemy*!

    1) You can avoid most bad results if you don't try to buff team members. As the upper eschelons of the table do bad things to the spell's target - whatever that spell is.

    2) Oh, and don't learn all spells - try to stick to spells that your party can weather and that are party friendly where available. Never know what you're gonna cast.

  • AstroBryGuyAstroBryGuy Member Posts: 3,415
    syllog said:

    Oh, KEY wild mage advice : *Target the Enemy*!

    Very good advice! Wild mages are best as the AOE spell specialists. Save the party-buffing for a second mage/bard/cleric.

    Corollary - get Neera the Shield Necklace in BG1.

  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 2,137
    Wild Mage rules. In both senses:

    1: Always stand at least ten feet from other party members. Twenty feet if you're Nahal'sing. This applies to your target as well, if they're in your party.
    1b: Especially when self-buffing.
    2: Keep the vast bulk of your wealth in piles of gems and magic items (there's no reason to save up anyway, and in BG2 you can easily get a Bag of Holding right at the start of Chapter 2).
    3: Conserve spells. You should do this with every mage anyway, it's better to have a wand of Fire, wand of Cloudkill and wand of Spell Striking available so you have more slots for battlefield control and debuffs than it is to have five slots dedicated to maybe meeting a spellcaster or group of kobolds.
    4: Nahal's in the safety of your own home, or at least out of sight of the enemy (Scouting, again, is simply good strategy). A Nahal'd Freedom is great, as is an offscreen Horrid Wilting, Simulacrum or Incendiary Cloud, and if you surge, chances are your enemy won't even notice, leaving you free keep to spending level 1 slots on level 8 or 9 effects.
    5: IF Gate THEN Protection from Evil. And possibly lure it over to your enemies first.
    6: Whilst Nahal's is a last resort, it is an amazing last resort, it effectively grants automatic Improved Alacrity, so if you're going to die anyway, try dropping nine Wail of the Banshees down before you do. Problem, sorcerers?
    6b: Improved Chaos Shield is a worthwhile thing to cast for such novas.
    7: Don't fear surges. The vast majority of them at higher levels are usually positive. Do feel free to pop up a Chaos Shield whenever you expect to cast more than one or two spells at a time though.
    8: Don't overestimate the frequency, or effect, of surges compared to the advantage of an extra spell slot of every level. You'll lose maybe a spell a day, you'll gain being the most powerful mages in the game.
    9: Another obvious one: Sequencers and Contingencies. Use them. You can easily set up ahead of time, so surges don't hurt much; and you can Nahal's them, meaning Chain Contingencies before anyone else. Pretty sure Contingencies don't Wild Surge, and Sequencers I think may only surge on the actual Sequencer use. Meanwhile, having the ability to just Nahal's your Contingencies and Sequencers means more slots for actual spells in the rest of your slots.

    And finally the golden rule:

    If a single wild surge ruins your whole combat, your strategy wasn't very good anyway.

  • LarkusLarkus Member Posts: 52
    edited December 2013
    From the BG2 Spells Reference:

    Nahal's Reckless Dweomer Endless Spells Strategy
    A variant on the Wish strategy above. In this case, use Nahal's Reckless Dweomer to cast Limited Wish and "wish that spells you have cast would be restored, that you might cast them again!". The advantage over using Wish is that Limited Wish always gives you the same options. The drawbacks are that Wild Surges may mess things up and it only recharges level 1-4 spells (but a Wild Mage can always cast his high level spells through his Dweomers).

    Minimum requirements:

    Nahal's Reckless Dweomer, memorized.
    Wisdom 16 or higher (or a Potion of Insight).

    How it works:

    Use up some of your party's level 1-4 spells. Conserve your own spells as much as possible to make sure the Limited Wish will restore at least one Dweomer.
    Cast Nahal's Reckless Dweomer, choose Limited Wish, talk to the Dao and let it restore your spells. This will rememorize the Dweomer, thus completing the cycle.
    Pretty simple so far. The difficulty is in not getting a bad Wild Surge.

    Tips and tricks:

    Cast (Improved) Chaos Shield to decrease the odds of the Wild Surges messing things up. Cast it through a Dweomer so you'll be able to recharge it cheaply.
    Get as many Dweomers as possible. One Limited Wish can restore up to four of them.
    Get as many clones as possible to try their luck at Nahal's Reckless Dweomer as well. Simulacrums will be able to cast Limited Wish through it no matter what your level since they still know the spell even if they don't have slots of that level. Get your clones to make more clones before trying as long as they still have four or more Dweomers (any less and next generation clones won't get them anymore).
    Let someone with higher Wisdom talk to the Dao or use Potions of Insight to raise your Wisdom if you do not meet the minimum requirement. Only let your clones use the potions if you don't want to expend them permanently.
    Combine this strategy with the Wish strategy above.

    Post edited by Larkus on
  • Demonoid_LimewireDemonoid_Limewire Member Posts: 424
    In 1: Keep your chaos shield on. Try to avoid abusing nahal's too much, since in 1 you are NOT getting the "greater" shield. Utilize ring of wizardry as early as possible, and prefer for level 1 spells magic missile and chromatic orb (mostly). Reload when you bust your game.

    In 2: Greater chaos shield. Chain contigency 3x greater chaos shield. Memorize most useful spells (extra slots are invaluable). Fill page 1 with Nahals. Cast the hell out of your book, and after spending 4 nahals, use one for casting wish, and replenish your spellcasting.

  • the_spyderthe_spyder Member Posts: 5,018
    edited May 2014
    Kneller said:

    1) Things are going to go wrong...a lot. Probably not so terribly horribly wrong that you and everyone you love dies. But if that happens just reload.

    2) Don't waste a Reckless on something dumb. If you're using Reckless, it better matter. So, if you Reckless for something namby pamby like a fireball, you deserve what you get. If you're low level, you can use it to cast a spell you don't actually have access to yet (as long as it's in your book). So, the second you get Time Stop or Chain Contingency, you can start using it...sorta (See #1).

    6) Just have fun with it.

    These three are the best advice in my opinion.

    I just pretend that I am playing Havok and be done with it.

    Post edited by the_spyder on
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