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Please give me party composition advice.

Despite having destroyed a few BG/BG2 disks through over use, my experience of IWD amounts to a single evening's play on a borrowed disk way back in the mists of time. (My schoolmate demanded the game back after we had a Pog-related disagreement... that's how long ago it was!)

So this leaves me in the nice position that on release, I'll be able to attack the game with *zero* meta-game knowledge.

I always like my PC to reflect the 'intended' story line, as it helps with my RP'ing.
(As an example, I started NWN2 as a Paladin... got through the prologue and then immediately rerolled as a I felt a Ranger was a better fit for that background.)

So, I'm asking for suggestions for appropriately thematic classes/ kits for my first run.
(Basically, I'd like to avoiding mistakes like building a team entirely composed of Elves and then discovering that they originate from a Dwarf village!)

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Comments

  • ElendarElendar Member Posts: 831
    Take a Bard... and a Druid. And probably a Paladin.

    AristilliusjackjackWandering_MinstrelQuartz
  • ElendarElendar Member Posts: 831
    edited September 2014
    *shrugs* Its based in Ten Towns which is just a confederation of fishing villages. A mostly human population with barbarians, goblins, yetis and orcs always threatening to raid. There's lots of snow.

    abacusJuliusBorisovjackjack
  • abacusabacus Member Posts: 1,308
    What're the broad strokes of the story? Is there an invidious dark force that a righteous group could be sent in to wipe out?

  • ElendarElendar Member Posts: 831
    Demons. And an artifact called Crenshinibon.

    abacus
  • PibaroPibaro Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 2,989
    1st advice:
    If you plan to play the HOF Mode, remember that you'll need a strong party, and that in HOF damaging deal spells are almost useless, while disabling, confusing, buffing and debuffing spells are priceless.
    in HOF enemies have loads of HP (so fireballs will be almost useless), and deal huge damages, but their saving throws will not change very much (if they change at all), and IIRC we can say the same for their thac0 (so your AC will matter unlike in late BG2-TOB).

    2th advice:
    In IWDEE I'd go with a good oriented party.

    3th advice:
    Druids are cool in IWDEE, while Bards are Super cool!!!

    4th advice:
    It's full of undead, really really full of undead (more than 50% of monsters are undead).
    So a good cleric or an undead hunter could be good choice.

    5th advice:
    In the original IWD there were few wizard spells (I hope there will be more in IWDEE), so if you plan to have more than one arcane caster, remember sorcerers.

    abacusJuliusBorisovBelgarathMTHWandering_Minstrel
  • abacusabacus Member Posts: 1,308
    Elendar said:

    Demons. And an artifact called Crenshinibon.

    Gesundheit

    jackjackrufus_hobartElrandirQuartz
  • abacusabacus Member Posts: 1,308
    What about thieving? Will I require a dedicated body? Or can I just F/T and get by?

    Thanks for the advice btw. I'm wary of the other threads as I don't want to run into spoilers.

  • ShynShyn Member Posts: 70
    edited September 2014
    You dont need a full time thief. Any multiclass or even dual class (after 90-100% open locks/find traps) will do just fine. So might aswell make him/her a durable backstabbing fighter.

    JuliusBorisovabacusPibaroQuartz
  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 21,311
    I second @Shyn‌ 's recommendation.

    Besides, you can take an Assassin as a pure thief. Sneak attacks, available in IWD, will make an Assassin a beast.

    abacus
  • FardragonFardragon Member Posts: 4,511
    Don't listen to that nonsense. APR is king in IWD, and Assassin APR is 1. If any pure thief is likely to be a beast, it's Bounty Hunter.

    abacusT2av
  • JarrakulJarrakul Member Posts: 2,029
    Very nearly any party can fit IWD, thematically. The game goes with the "you all start in a tavern" opening, so backstory is... easy. Barbarians (as in the class or just people from a barbarian tribe) fit especially well, as do priests of Tempus and druids. It generally makes more sense to have a party that's either good-aligned or highly respectful of nature. There are known populations (large or small) of most playable races in the region, with the exception of half-orcs, but since the game does have orcs it's not hard to imagine where a half-orc would come from. Basically, you have a ton of flexibility. Play what you want.

    abacusBelgarathMTHjackjack
  • ShynShyn Member Posts: 70
    Jarrakul said:

    Basically, you have a ton of flexibility. Play what you want.

    True, but I would definately advice bringing atleast a multiclassed thief along, just for the convenience of unlocking and disarming.

    abacus
  • DazzuDazzu Member Posts: 946
    Honestly, in IWD, a lot of the unkitted characters seem a lot more viable. Fighters can shoot, and there's a variety of great launchers. In this game, you'll want to keep your distance, especially early on. Eventually, a Dagger Kensai will kill things with the +4 return dagger, but that's a loooong way off and before then you'll find yourself prone to becoming swish cheese!

    Paladins too. Inquisitors won't be able to abuse the generous spell leveling advantage that IWD allows (you can get up to lvl 6 Lawful Good Cleric spells,) and Cavaliers just don't have enough dragons, demons (and devils which oddly count as demons,) to abuse their bonuses against and there WILL be times you want to fight at range, especially early on. Undead Hunters are still great, even with a lack of Level Drain and an abundance of Free Action/anti-hold items. The +3/3 vs. Undead is like an on average +2/2 for the entirety of IWD so they'd be my man of choice... unless only unkitted paladins get remove disease!


    Mages too, except for the Wild Mage, also got gyped in school loss. I almost dare call the ENCHANTER the best school because there's so much Emotion Hopelessness going around that +2 saves can make all the difference. Conjuration isn't a bad substitute with Symbol of Pain popping up a ton as well and a loss of evocation in both cases can be made up by your other mage or other schools: Burning Hands is godly in this game because it hits more targets ITS SO FUN!

    kcwiseabacus
  • KloroxKlorox Member Posts: 817
    Re: Thieves.

    I used an elf FMT as my only thief in this game and never felt short-handed. IIRC, my only other arcane caster was a Bard.

    kcwiseabacusRAM021JuliusBorisov
  • BelanosBelanos Member Posts: 968
    The key with IWD is to strive for a balanced party. Not only do you need characters with a good variety of skills, but having a variety of races helps as well. As for background story, it's pretty much wide open. You're just a band of adventurers that has arrived in this out of the way village, so you can make up any back story you like for them. Though as mentioned, having them be at least somewhat good aligned would probably make more sense. You don't have to go all out on that one though, as long as your party makeup seems logical. As for a thief, I've typically went for a Dwarven Fighter/Thief in the past, and that worked out fairly well. There aren't really that many situations where a pure Thief would be advantageous, if any at all. You basically just need someone along who can disarm traps and open locks. One thing I would recommend is having a Bard in your party as a secondary Arcane caster. Bards are very useful in this game.
    I'd say a fairly good lineup would go something like this:

    Ranger or Paladin
    Fighter/Thief
    Cleric
    Druid
    Bard
    Mage

    abacus
  • SharGuidesMyHandSharGuidesMyHand Member Posts: 2,517
    Belanos said:


    Ranger or Paladin
    Fighter/Thief
    Cleric
    Druid
    Bard
    Mage

    You wouldn't be concerned that you might have too few tanks/melee fighters with this lineup?

    jackjackabacusineth
  • the_spyderthe_spyder Member Posts: 5,018
    As far as "background" is concerned, you are given a valid reason why you are not from the area. You are literally a party of adventurers out looking for fame and glory (and gold). So any group of people with a semi-coherent reason for being together (friends etc...) will work.

    With that having been said, there are threads wherein having a Druid may help. From a tactical perspective, there is a fair amount of undead, so a Cleric would be of significant benefit. And having a Barbarian will add benefit to certain story elements. But none of these are "Necessary". Merely suggestions.

    abacusjackjack
  • BelanosBelanos Member Posts: 968
    edited September 2014


    You wouldn't be concerned that you might have too few tanks/melee fighters with this lineup?

    Clerics and Druids can also double as tanks, you don't need to have them only casting spells. They're not quite as good as a pure Fighter, but they'll do. You could also mix and match, like having a Ranger/Cleric for example, or Fighter/Druid. The main thing IMO is to have one of each Divine caster so you get the most out of those spell types.

    abacus
  • OlvynChuruOlvynChuru Member Posts: 2,712
    Here's my idea. It sure worked for me.

    Fighter
    Ranger
    Paladin
    Fighter/Cleric
    Fighter/Mage
    Fighter/Thief

    Of course, if you actually want to have fun, then try something else.

    jackjack
  • ZeckulZeckul Member Posts: 1,031
    edited September 2014
    Play it on normal difficulty with six characters of varied classes. Try to cover all the different roles: tank, melee damage, ranged damage (nowhere as good as in BG1), healing, buffs, debuffs, AOE damage. Try to cover priest, druid and mage spells. They're all interesting and fun to use. And also use varied weapon specialization. Swords for everyone isn't good advice here.

    There's a wide variety of ways to achieve all these goals and part of the unique challenge of IWD is crafting a full party to solve this problem. You could of course go for a smaller or more focused party, but for a first run and a good overview of what the game has to offer I suggest a varied party.

    Here's what I'm using currently:
    1) human fighter3/druid dualclass (+++ sling, ++ sword) 18/..-18-18-3-17-17
    2) human cleric5or9/illusionist dualclass (sling, mace, hammer, flail) 14+-18-16-18-15+-3
    3) human ranger7/cleric dualclass (++ sling, ++ mace, ++ flail) 18/00-18-18-3-18-3
    4) half-elf bard (bow, halberd, greatsword, crossbow) 14+-18-16-18-3-15+
    5) dwarf fighter/thief (++ bow, ++ dagger, ++ long sword) 18/00-17-19-useless
    6) gnome axe fighter (good aligned, +++++ axes, ++ bows) 18/00-18-18-useless

    VERY happy with this group. Lots of options and tons of firepower. A little light on mage spells but the bard does provide nice backup in that area. Mage spells also aren't nearly as dominant as they are in the BG games.

    Post edited by Zeckul on
    JuliusBorisovjackjack
  • CalmarCalmar Member Posts: 688
    abacus said:


    I always like my PC to reflect the 'intended' story line, as it helps with my RP'ing.

    abacus said:

    What're the broad strokes of the story? Is there an invidious dark force that a righteous group could be sent in to wipe out?

    The only RP justification you need is, at most, why your adventurers have come to Easthaven, and perhaps why they then decide to accept Hrothgar's offer. From then on, the party becomes engulfed in unexpected and unforeseen events. If anything, actually preparing a party specifically for the events to come is the 'unintended' course of action, in my opinion.
    People from all parts of Faerûn and all walks of life can end up in Icewind Dale, so you needn't even worry about them having to be northlanders, either.

    jackjackQuartzKlorox
  • CoryNewbCoryNewb Member Posts: 1,330
    I'm not going to get super in depth, but a bard + druid + pally will make life much easier. The other 1-3 people you add can fill whatever roles you want or like.

    jackjackJuliusBorisovRAM021Quartz
  • QuartzQuartz Member Posts: 3,851
    @Zeckul Or an Undead Hunter to fulfill that Paladin role. ;) I reckon that subclass will be rather popular in Icewind Dale.

    JuliusBorisovkcwisejackjack
  • CoryNewbCoryNewb Member Posts: 1,330
    Undead hunter will be a very common denominator....which excites me!

  • CasadoomCasadoom Member Posts: 68
    @Quartz Unless they add level drains on the undead, I'm not sure that - even in an undead heavy game - undead hunter can compete with Cavalier immunities. This also depends on how kits will interact the default IWD paladin inherent abilities. (After all, only base bard has the IWD songs.)

    Pibarojackjack
  • JarrakulJarrakul Member Posts: 2,029
    Undead Hunter's bonuses to attack and damage will be very nice. The immunities, less so, due to lack of level drain. Cavalier, meanwhile, will be good for the immunities and against most of the hardest bosses. So both good, I'd think.

    Quartzkcwiseilduderino
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