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How Dual Wielding Broke the Game

DazzuDazzu Member Posts: 924
I am not exaggerating. The weapon options in IWD make Cespinar's work look stupid, and these things don't ask for your gold most of the time.

Let's start with a few obvious breakages.

There are 5 melee weapons that confer an extra APR!.

They are Morning Star of Action +4, the Longsword of Action +4, the Bastard Sword of Action +4, Fast Flail +2 and the Valiant Scimitar +2.

The Bastard Sword has suddenly gone from being garbage due to being in a loot table with everything else being +2 or +3 and a boss requiring +2 just around the corner. Now it's probably the best in there. Sure the [Short] Sword of Days having 25% slow sounds really sexy being +3 and all, but I'd rather have a 100% chance to boost the APR of my weapon main hand than 25% slow on it.

And there's plenty at that point you'd enjoy giving an extra attack to.

Not only that! In the treasure room before that, you can find the Fast Flail +2 for yet another APR. Realize that this is around the point XPwise that Charname has just started to explore Athkatla and you can already outfit yourself in enviable ways.

The Morningstar is the best weapon in the game, and that's because it can inflict stun. In fact, there are lots of weapons that can. Stun in vanilla IWD is so good. Less things have Free action than you'd think. Bosses are easy enough to kill with some stun.

If you think you'll have more than enough APR as is on your bludgeoneer, you could try a Shocking Flail +4, which grants +1 Armor, 50% chance for +2D3 electrical damage, and a 20% chance target is Stunned.

By compare the MSoA only has 15% stun and no other effects.

The Longsword is good too, a bit more defensive with +1 AC and 15% slash res.

If you want defensive offhanders though... you've plenty of options.

The best is probably the Bastard Sword +3 Defender, which provides 10% damage resistance, 2AC, and +2 saving throws. Yea, it's the best offhander for a Barbarian or Dwarven Defender.

War Hammer +4 Defender isn't shabby with 15% resist to crush, slash and blunt, with magic in place of missile and the same 2 AC. Sadly, the only saving throw provided is vs Spells, admittedly the most important, but vs. death could be very good as well, and the Sword doesn't share as valuable a loot table as the War hammer.

Then again use both and ask enemies why they even thought they could hurt you at all!

But that's the obvious stuff, lets talk priests and mages... you heard me. There are mage weapons and sanctified blunt weapons.
The Morningstar of the gods is the best one.
It's a +3 weapon with:
Armor Class Bonus: 1
Wisdom: +1 bonus
Memorize 2 additional 1st level Priest spells
Memorize 1 additional 2nd level Priest spell

Other weapons are sanctified versions which only add low level spell levels. You could make this work if you love low level spell spamming... you shouldn't.

For mages, however, there's decent options with mage daggers. The Mage Daggers are a series of +1-4 weapons with decent bonuses and extra mage spells. If dual wielded, you can get a lot of extra magic missiles, especially if you follow with Kontik's wizardry ring.

Ranged Weapons are good too, but in IWD, you can only reach mastery with missile weapons. This made the throwing Ax +2 incredible because of its ability to be grandmastered. Archers can still rule though as long as you stay away from shortbows. Seriously, Crossbows are better for your thief/mage.

There's a +2 Crossbow of Speed, and a +3 Repeating Light Crossbow with a base 3 APR. There's also a heavy version in the same loot table.

In that same loot table is the Hammer Longbow +4 with 4 APR. FOUR! As in, you put that on someone who ISN'T a master archer. Put that on your bard.

Being fair, it is the only +4 Longbow. The +3 Repeater is a longbow version of Tuigan, which should be good on a grandmaster if grandmastery is possible.

A shame about the lacked variety of ammo.

When I've more time I'll get into more stuff, such as weapons you should avoid pointing up.



  • SharGuidesMyHandSharGuidesMyHand Member Posts: 2,471
    CrevsDaak said:

    Also, BG2 and IWD are two different things, if weapons from IWD are OP, they are still form IWD and not from BG, BG was designed to be BG and IWD was designed to BATMAN, I mean… IWD.

    Good point.

    IWD is a much more action/power-driven game, so it requires greater spells and weapons.

    The BGs (especially the first one) have much more emphasis on RPing and character development, so there is less of a need for such "OP'd" weaponry.

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    Iirc, HoW rebalances the IWD tables pretty nicely. Also, most 'loot' is random... you dont have a guarantee about what you'll find usually.

    As was said, IWD is not ToB: the fights in IWD can be really rough at times, so you kinda need the awesome gear.

  • DazzuDazzu Member Posts: 924
    Take those two defender items and put them on a Dwarven Defender. Step two, activate Defensive Stance. Step 3:??? Step 4: Enjoy 95% physical resistance. Swap in the Morningstar Defender +4 if an extra 5% for slashing or piercing is necessary.

  • elminsterelminster Member, Developer Posts: 15,956
    edited October 2014
    So basically you'll have one character, once you've beaten the upper portion of Dorn's deep, that is very resistant to physical damage.

    Didn't you already get that with Stoneskin? (which you can pick up before Dorn's Deep)

    The warhammer +4 gives 15% slashing, crushing and piercing resistance, but nothing for missile.

    So in theory with +20% innate bonus, 50% from dwarf defender ability, and 10% from the bastard sword you would be 80% resistant against piercing/slashing/missile/crushing. With the warhammer you would be also 95% resistant against slashing, crushing and piercing. Really though its going to be a lot less than that for the majority of the game since you won't immediately have these items, that much of a bonus for your innate ability, or that many uses of your defender ability.

    Honestly Stoneskin (which was in the original game) and Iron Skin are just going to be easier and leave you free to use other weapons.

    Post edited by elminster on
  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    Also, not everything relies exclusively on physical combat damage.

    Also also (heh), you already could end up nearly indestructible. You could use a shield and one of the better defensive weapons, and the kickass girdle from the Hand (assuming the enemy drops it) to be pretty slashing protected.

    Compared to PfMW, this isnt a big deal.

  • DazzuDazzu Member Posts: 924
    Physical attackers far outnumber magic. Sure I could use a mage with Stoneskin and PfMW to tank... but wouldn't I be better off sending a tank into the fray who can use the right defensive weapons?

    Shields in this game are kinda meh. The Argent Shield is pretty good when you need some extra MR, but against mages, saving throws might be better... then again I found physical attackers to be more common in this game.

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    Pretty sure there were some incredibly beefy shields, though I think some hurt you offensively. Havent played for years, and cant easily check.

  • DazzuDazzu Member Posts: 924
    Edvin said:

    Some of kits from BG:EE will not work well in IWN.
    ( I can think of more cases than Dwarven Defender. )

    Will not work? Will not work?! I think the opposite is quite true, it'll destroy.

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    Thats kinda his point. IWD was balanced for IWD, not BG2. Reworking or replacing some kits would be very wise, since you could already be nearly immune already to non-crushing damage.

    Adding all of the BG2 magic is also going to require reworking. :/ Certain spells maybe shouldnt be available, or the AI needs to deal with them. IWD had relatively few defensive spells, famously MI and Stoneskin, both easily countered by the fact that you are getting swarmed if you dont protect your arcane users. You cant overload PfMW, for example, so it needs to be countered in some way. Or reworked.

    I think making IWD identical to BGEE might not be the ideal route; IWD is supposed to bemits own game, but I suspect most of BGEE would be fine. Interesting to see the solution chosen anyways.

  • SchneidendSchneidend Member Posts: 3,190
    IWD was way harder than BG2, so it should be fine.

    Also, it's a game where you are supposed to build your own party from scratch. It was basically an invitation to break it.

    Having gear with unique abilities that combine well with class abilities are part of the fun of a good RPG's mechanics, and part of why, mechanically, the Icewind Dale franchise is superior to BG.

  • CuvCuv Member, Developer Posts: 2,535
    omg - for a moment there I thought Karzak was back (for those that remember him from the BIS forums)

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    IWD was much harder, but physical immunity is probably better in IWD than in BG2. Mind you, you could get really high immunity in BG2 anyways, and that didnt break it. *shrug*

    I still think it might be nice if some kits are reworked a bit to stress the differentness. IWD had differences, would be appropriate to keep this.

  • DazzuDazzu Member Posts: 924
    How is IWD harder than BG? In BG, you risk dying, at the start, to a wolf or a mage who, if he gets one cast of magic missile off, will almost certainly kill a mage outright and can possibly kill a helpless player or two. Also the low level limit disallows legal grandmastery.

    Or maybe it's harder than BG2, because we all know how much timestop enemies in IWD used, as well as the numbers of dragons and liches fought... or maybe the fact that IWD's first major boss can be webbed while you use the +2 Throwing Axe you JUST got. If that fails, you have a stun weapon or two to keep her from acting... is my memory off? Nevermind all the level draining you have to remember to immunize against, all zero of it, and the times you need to get rid of spell protections... multiple times in a row.

    Are you guys sure IWD is harder?

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    Uh, the first 'quest' in IWD can easily kill newbies. Literally HORDES of enemies regularly swarm you, and frankly, BG2 Liches are a joke compared to the Dorn's one. Nasty fellow he was. You also had to actually protect your squishies, something very optional in BG2.

    Btw? I have soloed Sarevok and friends with one sorcerer by using web a few times. Utterly shutting down the 'grand climax' with a level 2 spell?! Yyyeeeaaahhh, I wouldnt try that wih Belhefit and friends. Heck, Polquin would win that fight. :/ Want to use a higher level win button? Chaos is even funnier. Tazok is very handy!

    This also ignores HoF, dear heavens NO MORE DROWNED DEAD PLEASE! I'll be good! :'(

    I do suspect some of us are coloured by the Vanilla of IWD, which could be truly ugly if you randomed bad gear and didnt cheeseball.

  • smeagolheartsmeagolheart Member Posts: 7,129
    so how did they fix address or change the proficiencies in IWD:EE?

  • DazzuDazzu Member Posts: 924
    IWD also was more convenient. For instance, Ctrl+J didn't cause you to wait and glow before jumping. Good for quick travel. I bet the BG2 Engine will ruin this... and the fact that the restore command will remove all your buffs, annoying that is.

    Of course, maybe my vanilla BG1 experience is skewed since I died to Tarnesh more often than I died to a cave of orcs. Also don't remember using Sorcs in vanilla bg1 either.

  • SpungiSpungi Member Posts: 216
    Imo it's not a totally fair comparison... I did most of Bg2 with mostly my berserker/cleric buffed with haste or later improved haste... For fun I tried throwing him at demogorgon with the rest of the party waiting in the back...
    With all his buffs and the items equipped he's got almost 25 str/dex/con.

    No challenge...

    Both games are challenging in their own way, and both can be cheesed *cough* traps.

    Running into the bitch at the greater forge in lower dorns deep, without being prepared... Was going OK, I was killing... Wait, my bard and thief are dead!?
    HOLY SHIT, is that 7 fire Giants!?... /reload

    Wasn't pretty :)

  • SpungiSpungi Member Posts: 216
    You nailed it Mr. Boo:) Most of bg2 was a breeze with a hasted minsc with celestial fury... Dat stun!

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    @Spungi‌ but what does your min-maxed kensage dw then?!

    Cheese existed in both games, but I found by ToB you had to work to avoid cheese. I largely agree with Boo as well, but hope IWD can have some uniqueness vs BG.

  • SpungiSpungi Member Posts: 216
    I'll have to admit, I've never played a kensage...
    I try to avoid arcane casters as much as possible :) I'm Danish, so gotta go for brute force.. Vikings!! Rawr...
    Now where'd I put my mountain dew...

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    Well, its worth trying as kensage dualed at 13 once imo... you want brute force?

    Kenny the Kensage: You Wouldn't Like Me When I Tenser...

  • ArchaosArchaos Member Posts: 1,419
    In HoF it was all about summons.
    Have your Cleric cast summons, have your Mage cast summons, have your Druid cast summons, even have your freaking Bard cast summons.

    They get the stats of the enemy monsters and make things much easier.

  • ElrandirElrandir Member Posts: 1,584
    Spungi said:

    I'm Danish, so gotta go for brute force.. Vikings!! Rawr...
    Now where'd I put my mountain dew...

    And by mountain dew, he literally means dew that he gathered from a mountain. Vikings. *shrugs*

  • SpungiSpungi Member Posts: 216
    Ofcourse, why would any
    Elrandir said:

    Spungi said:

    I'm Danish, so gotta go for brute force.. Vikings!! Rawr...
    Now where'd I put my mountain dew...

    And by mountain dew, he literally means dew that he gathered from a mountain. Vikings. *shrugs*
    Ofcourse, what else would I be talking about?

  • ElrandirElrandir Member Posts: 1,584
    Oh you know, that strangely yellow colored beverage that the english peasants drink. While they eat their orange sticks.

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