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"Maybe this time" [NO-RELOAD THREAD]: "The Tale of TEN THOUSAND Trials"



  • EnuhalEnuhal Member Posts: 741
    edited November 2020
    Apologies for taking a break in updating my undead hunter run - a sudden surge of RL responsibilities forced me to stop for a while - but now I'm back:

    Dassareth, Undead Hunter with a custom party, Update 7

    Previous updates:
    Balduran's Island turned out to be a short, quick and easy affair - Very much helped by Khelbara being great with daggers. Every Greater Wolfwere or Loup Garou I happened to meet was quickly attacked with two wand of paralyzation charges at a time, and, once stunned, killed by the Kensai:
    The party entered Durlag's Tower, carefully getting rid of any traps and using some traps of their own to help with the dwarven warders - with a careful approach, love was killed by a buffed Cadrax, the thief was revealed via detect invisibility (Albruin) and the other two were mostly killed by skeletons - the cleanest version of this fight I have achieved to date:
    Having three fighter-types is quite helpful against the Dwarven Doom Guards on the next level, the most serious challenge down there in my opinion. Due to poor pathfinding and a lack of attention, our most vulnerable party member, Galderan (no stoneskins, no good AC), got pushed into melee combat and took quite a lot of damage, but I was able to get him out in time:
    I cleared the three paths downstairs - the wyvners with sheer force, the skeletons with a PfU scroll and the backstabbers by always leading with skeletons or Cadrax, drawing out their backstabs. For the ice chamber, Cadrax donned the belt from Gorion's corpse - these guys are not very good at choosing their targets, and full frost immunity is, in effect, immunity to damage here:
    I had tons of consumables with me (already having some type of giant strength potion active on my fighters, because I just had too many of them), and did my usual chess event preparation, which involves potions of absorption for everybody in order to be able to ignore the rules of chess. I barely ended up moving, though - just shooting fireballs and double web sequencers at the approaching hordes before taking down the king:
    For the Demon Knight, I instead opted for immunity to fire (via resistance scrolls and potions) in order to counter his fireball, plus berserker rage on Cadrax because of his stun abilities. He tends to open with a dispel magic, and I made sure that only Cadrax was in range - the others, still fully buffed, were able to quickly deal with this foe:
    Next time, the final challenges of BG1 await us - going back to Ulgoth's Beard (always a fun one, especially with SCS) and facing Sarevok in the Undercity.

  • JabberwockJabberwock Member Posts: 75
    Blackraven wrote: »
    Sorry about your Rangers and Thieves @Jabberwock. I've enjoyed your posts and I like these themed runs. I'm sure I'll also enjoy reading about whichever of the two parties you choose to go with next (with a slight preference for the Wild Mage).

    Nice to hear!

    Probably going to try to get through BG1 this weekend. I'm leaning towards the monk party, only because I'm actually most excited about the wild mage run and don't want to run through my most interesting parties first.

    The lack of a thief I worry is going to be super annoying, but with Heardalis for knock and Cernd for infinite hp, I'm hoping it isn't ultimately too bad. I don't know what the most threatening traps are, outside of maybe chapter 2/3. I do know there are a few disintegrate and petrify traps.. I guess the most concerning are the permakill traps, the repeater traps and any that are in combat areas (like the guarded compound).

    Maybe some BG1 traps like in the catacombs are going to be an issue..
  • Wise_GrimwaldWise_Grimwald Member Posts: 3,410
    edited November 2020
    Journal of Bryant Brighteyes

    We joined up with Xzar and Montaron and after leaving Montaron in Joia's house, we met up with Khaled and Jaheira.

    We then completyed their request, dropping them off in Nashkel after speaking to the mayor.

    We then went to pick up Montaron who helped us to acquire much needed goods at Ulgoth's Beard. He also acquired Algernon's Cloak for us. :) We left him to have a rest in Beregost as the three of us went through the mines in Nashkel like a dose of salts. We picked up Xan, but left him just outside the exit from the mine. We will probably take him somewhere safe such as the Carnival when we have finished what we are presently doing.


    We cleared the caves of all undead before plundering them. We also killed Narcillicus when he attacked us for no reason. After chatting to Elminster and a little girl we visited Officer Rai and sold our bandit scalps.

    After rescuing Viconia we went to the bandit camp where we were recruited. ;) We scoured the camp for items and were lucky enough to find a fireball scroll.

    We then headed back to Beregost killing Deke and his "friends" on the way.
    In Beregost we killed Tranzig and cleared a spider infestation.
    Post edited by Wise_Grimwald on
  • EnuhalEnuhal Member Posts: 741
    edited November 2020
    Dassareth, Undead Hunter with a custom party, Update 9

    Previous updates:
    While I mostly just fireball my way through SoD, I did at least set myself the goal not to recharge my necklaces of missles this time around - and I'm also planning to tackle a few risky encounters I usually either avoid or tend to do in a safer way. Still, not much to report in the city, the Coast Way Crossing or the Coast Way Forest (vampire hunting is quite easy for Dassareth). My first interesting encounter occured in the Lair of Morentherene - Somehow, the throwing dagger oneshot failed to materialize, so I was forced to fight the dragon straight up. First, I left her cave to buff up, including the important protection from poison green scrolls, which negate the breath weapon. With that, my usual combat buffs and remove fear going, Cadrax was quite capable of tanking the dragon, and the party took her down:
    The good thing about doing this fight the proper way: I still had my green scrolls going when fighting Ziatar, countering her breath weapon as well:
    And, with an enraged Cadrax leading the way to avoid the Neothelid's mental attacks, the monster in the centre of the area was taken down as well:
    I made my way to the altar, summoned some skeletons and threw fireballs at the enemy party. Two survived and were quickly taken out:
    Next, I lured the shadow aspect out of its lair, and skeletons absorbed the backstab. This one's fairly easy because the SCS tactical setting implies core rules difficulty for SoD, so no mislead-backstab-cheese here:
    I made my way to Bridgefort, taking along Edwin for his quest to backstab Vichand:
    At Bridgefort, I decided to try the option to charge out of the fort and across the bridge instead of going through the front gate with the flaming fist or surrendering - a new one, and a bit risky, but I felt confident. Cadrax was equipped with high fire resistance, allowing me to take down everything not protected by MGOI with fireballs, while Galderan used his Wand of the Heavens against the MGOI-protected mages:
    I used arrows of dispelling to take down the wizard at the bridge battle:
    One of the harder fights in the next chapter - the cave full of spiders, killer mimics and slimes. Having six potions of freedom here is really helpful:
    With a careful and sometimes stealthy approach, I did all the sidequests for the Coalition Camp and entered the Underground River, making sure to have all the relevant buffs active. For the first time, I also tried to take down the lich Zadroth (made visible by spectacles), using The Secret Revealed - which made this a rather easy attempt:
    During the Siege of Dragonspear Castle, I decided not to kill all the enemies, instead quickly making my way to the duel site. Dassareth used a PfM scroll and just started attacking, resulting in an easy victory. Following Caelar, these are her buffed stats in preparation of facing Belhifet:
    With full buffs, including immunity to all elemental damage types, I went for an all-out assault on the devil:
    I had +3 ammo at the ready, and Khelbara was buffed with Enchant Weapon. Belhifet's invisibility attempts got countered by Galderan's True Sight:
    Besides his inital gate, Belhifet only got the opportunity to summon in 1 additional Cornugon. He was basically dead at this point:
    Victory - and time for SoA, where things should get more interesting. Some final stats for BG1+SoD:
  • Wise_GrimwaldWise_Grimwald Member Posts: 3,410
    edited November 2020
    @Enuhal Congrats on beating SoD :)

    Journal of Bryant Brighteyes

    We thoroughly trashed the bandit camp! :)


    Web and fireballs/holy smite were used ouside the camp, web silence, and holy smite inside the tent.


    Between the Camp and Cloakwood Mines we first of all helped Aldeth and then we killed Centeol et al.


    We then had several incidents with Wyverns and bandits.


    Inside the mine Hareishan inadvertently killed herself with a lightning bolt which did us little harm.

    Natasha was also no problem


    And after he had used up his spells in killing summoned monsters, neither was Davaeorn. :)

    After picking up our reward from the temple for killing the wyvern, we spent all but 32 gold pieces to buy green scrolls and potions at High Hedge. There were a few more potions there which we would have liked to have bought but they will have to wait.

    Upon arrival in Baldur's Gate, Firestorm found a tome which improved his dexterity and through that his thieving ability. His name is now quite appropriate as he can cast three fireball spells without needing to rest.
    Post edited by Wise_Grimwald on
  • Wise_GrimwaldWise_Grimwald Member Posts: 3,410
    edited November 2020
    @Jabberwock On page 405 for my current run I wrote "In Beregost we calmed Marl and took a tome to Firebead before heading south where we killed both ogrillons and Flaming Fist Morons who attacked us without cause. They too died."

    Walkthroughs will also tell you of this option. Warning. If you have certain party members with you, that option may not be available. If they are in the party, you need to leave them outside while talking to Marl. That is something that I have only recently discovered.
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 7,097
    edited November 2020
    Gate70/Grond0 multiplayer attempt 214, Core rules + unmodded (1st and final update)
    Salix (male human abjurer, Grond0); Rewh (male elf sorcerer, Gate70)
    Previous run

    Salix took a hit from one of the assassins in Candlekeep, but survived to lead the way to the coast to find Shoal. She was blinded and already dead meat before Rewh showed that (in v2.6 anyway) she's also vulnerable to sleep.
    On the downside in that area, Mad Arcand refused to acknowledge a ring found nearby was anything to do with him.

    After travelling to Beregost, Salix just attacked Neera rather than bothering to try blinding her first. That proved to be a problem when Neera failed to get annoyed and try to run, but just sprinted forward to seek help from the person doing their best to kill her :o.
    Rather than risk that encounter, Salix let her run away with her gem bag. Silke though was blinded before talking to her. Her last-ditch effort to disappear proved unsuccessful and she was rapidly finished off.

    Salix had started with Protection from Petrification as his required abjuration spell, so headed for the basilisk area to get some mileage from that. Blind was regularly used to make hitting the monsters easier and the southern group died without any concerns.
    The greater basilisk near Mutamin stays neutral in v2.5, even when under attack, but that's no longer the case in v2.6 - so it was a good job that Salix was close enough to draw its gaze there (as Rewh was not protected).
    By this time Rewh had learned web, but Mutamin has very good saves and managed to stay active for some time there. Salix was lucky to save against horror before a scorcher spell finished Mutamin off.

    Rather than take on Kirian's gang, we went down to Nashkel to seek some Bhaal healing. Noober thought he was going to walk away there after a nice chat - but failed to reckon with a web pre-cast to cover his intended exit.

    In the Valley of the Tombs, Salix picked up a free magical dagger before watching as Rewh successfully blinded the revenant. His magic missiles ran out before the revenant's HPs, but there was enough room in the tomb to catch the revenant in a web - while allowing Rewh to thrust out his staff from just outside it.
    Salix convinced some ghasts to chase him out of another tomb - two were blinded and posed no problem, but Salix took his life in his hands by using a scorcher on the last. That spell imposes quite a long delay after casting before permitting movement, so it was no great surprise that Salix was attacked and held. However, he'd calculated that Rewh would be able to finish off the ghast before dying himself - and was proved correct.
    He then suggested dealing with Narcillicus to round off work there. Rewh sent in a web, but was spotted in the process and ended up drawing away a couple of mustard jellies. Despite his previous troubles, Salix tried to use a scorcher once more on the webbed Narcillicus, but he broke free just before Salix could complete his spell. Narcillicus had started casting improved invisibility before failing his saving throw and picked up that spell where he'd left off as soon as he was free - meaning he finished it almost instantly, still just before Salix could cast. The AI reacted to the loss of target by sending Salix into the web before I could override that and he got stuck immediately. Just to add to his troubles, a skeleton had obviously appeared on the encounter spot outside the ghast tomb and wandered in to see if there was anything worth shooting at. Salix just survived a lightning bolt from Narcillicus, but didn't get a last chance to break free from the web thanks to a skeleton arrow.
  • Wise_GrimwaldWise_Grimwald Member Posts: 3,410
    @Gate70 @Grond0 Sorry about your loss. it was getting quite interesting.

    Poor Salix. :'(
  • Wise_GrimwaldWise_Grimwald Member Posts: 3,410
    edited November 2020
    Journal of Bryant Brighteyes

    Apart from fetching and carrying the first thing that we did in Baldur's Gate was to heal myself of poison.

    We thn went to the Low Lantern where we fought Desreta. She was tough and I therefore went for R & R afterwards.

    We delivered a body to Arkion and re-enlisted Montaron before pickpocketting both Arkion and Nemphre.

    After killing yago we were able to release Brielbara's baby from a curse.

    We then released Ghorak from the curse upon him, and after rescuing a boy's body from Umberlee's Temple, we killed the High Priestess and were therefore able to increase Hal's Wisdom.

    Casson was then raised and we were given a shield as a reward.

    To the east we were approached by the evil Razemith and we decided that the Gate would be a better place without him.

    We investigated Jardak's home whereupon he attacked and killed Firestorm. We retaliated in like manner.

    Laerta and her sister were then rescued.

    We then went in search of Vail, were told the location of Balduran's Cloak and then killed all the petrified thieves after first using stone to fleah scolls upon them.

    We returned to Beregost and rescued Neera
  • EnuhalEnuhal Member Posts: 741
    Dassareth, Undead Hunter with a custom party, Update 10

    Previous updates:
    Starting with SoA, I fought my way out of Irenicus' Dungeon and started with the Circus Tent quest, using Galderan's True Sight and some quick magic missles:
    Next up, I quickly freed Hendak and the slaves and invested in the first of two axes for Dassareth: Azuredge. The powerful weapon was put to good use, as I decided to use my early undead hunter advantage to get some easy experience at the graveyard, clearing out all of the crypts:
    One thing I'm always doing in early SoA after a previous death due to ambushes is only ever travel from map to map with invisibility 10' radius active - this was very helpful this time around, allowing for me to buff and summon help before taking down Suna Seni:
    I started doing the non-stronghold-related quests around the city, such as the harper quest:
    I made sure to travel to the bridge in order to steal the Boomerang Dagger from Captain Dennis - thus granting all of my fighter types quite powerful magical weapons early on - I used those, and a quick true sight to avoid backstabs, in order to solve the skinner murders:
    With the help of traps, a backstab, Rowin's magical defenses and the usual array of buffs, I cleared out Mencar's party:
    A few more minor quests and encounters gave Rowin access to sixth level spells - Death Spell was my first choice, quite effective not only against trolls and summons, but in general in the early levels, as a bunch of slavers soon discovered:
    Having maxed out my reputation, I bought, among other things, a magic license and Stonefire. The final minor encounter in the city for now was fought against the bridge district party:
    No need for wizard chess yet. Even PFMW is a poor protection against my three fighter-types + skald + a bunch of poweful buffs super-low-thac0 combo - we can simply swap to normal weapons and will usually just get through any stoneskins before the mage can do something dangerous (and the tactical setting scripts, due to their limited pre-buffs, will often start out with some type of GOI spell, which is fairly useless against my current strategy). Of course, later opponents will get access to more powerful congencies, mantle, improved mantle, AI or simply be liches, so this certainly won't last.

    Next time, we shall explore the Druid Grove, the Umar Hills, the Sewers, De'Arnise keep and Mae'Var's guild.
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 7,097
    Jabberwock wrote: »
    As an aside, Minsc's rage making him uncontrollable is one of my least favorite design choices in the entire saga. Minsc would be a much, much (much) stronger NPC if his rage wasn't nerfed in that way.
    Surely that's exactly the point. His rage (stemming from old injuries) is not really supposed to make him a better character overall. However, it provides the opportunity for players to take advantage of the changed balance of strengths and weaknesses for particular encounters.
    Kivan managed to critical miss with the slaying arrow a moment before Kahrk fired a pfMW, so that maneuver didn't work on multiple levels.
    The point at which PfMW (and similar spells) is assessed is when the attack is made, not when it takes effect. If the arrow had rolled as a hit it would have worked, even if PFMW had gone up in the interval between the shot being fired and it hitting.
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 7,097
    edited November 2020
    Gate70 wrote: »

    edit2: Bonus points for Grond0 if he can spot why enemies seem to be damaging him quite so badly. I've bolded a bit of the writeup so it may be a tad too easy to spot but if you want to work it out don't look at the below.

    Easy enough - I did actually mention during the session that I'd lost a helmet as a result of dying at the Bandit Camp. Admittedly I could have replaced it after noticing that, but it seemed more appropriate to wait until we could loot a helm or two in the City :D.
  • JabberwockJabberwock Member Posts: 75
    A few comments on a PC monk in BG1. Overall rating, not good.

    In many ways, a BG1 monk is just a BG1 swash without thieving abilities, and a BG1 swash in combat is in many ways just a crippled fighter with equipment, stat and proficiency penalties.

    However, there are a few bright spots.

    (i) A monk can use giant strength potions, and gets both warrior thac0 and bonus level 7/13 APR. So, a PC monk can combine relatively cheap/common giant strength potions with DUHM to give an enormous strength bonus to a relatively safe ranged attack with throwing daggers. Swash can't use giant strength potions, and don't have the warrior thac0 table or bonus APR (but do have swash bonus and specialization bonus).

    Lvl. 9 Halfling Swash (110k xp): d4 [base] + 9 [21 str] + 2 [specialization] + 1 [swash] = 14.5 damage @ 15 [base] - 4 [23 dex] - 1 [specialization] -2 [bracers] - 1 [swash] = 7 thac0 w/ 2 APR

    Lvl. 8 Human Monk (110k xp): d4 [base] + 12 [24 str] = 14.5 @ 13 [base] - 4 [21 dex] - 2 [bracers] = 7 thac0 w 5/2 APR

    So the monk gets an extra 1/2 APR with roughly equal damage and thac0.

    (ii) Monks move quickly without haste, and can wear RoFA without penalty.

    Unfortunately, they are terrible tanks and can't really wade into a web and start swinging.

    (iii) Throwing daggers are pretty good. Provided the monk has at least 19 strength, he doesn't do *that* much less damage than an archer. Unfortunately however, there are no magical much less elemental throwing daggers in BG1.

    (iv) Fists do crushing damage.


    The issues are numerous:

    (i) Can't wear a helmet! Being hit by critz iz bad.

    (ii) Max constitution bonus to hp is +2. Base hp is d8. A level 8 monk (110k) will end the game with about 55 hp. This is not good, and combined with (i), makes it almost impossible for the monk to engage in melee safely. Even the smallest scrapes put the monk in range of an instakill on enemy crit. This makes it very difficult to get any use out of stunning fists.

    (iii) Melee DPS isn't good vs. a fighter. Fists hit as normal weapons until BG2 and do not deal elemental damage. Using a weapon gives up the unarmed APR bonus and compares even more poorly vs. a fighter.

    (iv) Very little use of thief abilities. Can't disarm traps/locks or backstab or detect illusion.

    (v) Poor AC vs. a fighter

    (vi) +2 saving throw bonus is outshone by shorty saves (monk must be human).

    (vii) Haste/slow immunity is generally a net loss.

    (viii) Can't wear a helmet! Unlike mages and thieves, to my knowledge there is no way for a monk to gain critical hit immunity throughout the entire saga. It's gonna be rough.


    Anyway, I am still enjoying the monk kit because it is so unique. Hopefully the tradeoffs will look a lot better by the end of SoA.
  • Wise_GrimwaldWise_Grimwald Member Posts: 3,410
    edited November 2020
    @Grond0 Hard luck with the shaman. :'(
    @Jabberwock Well done against Sarevok. :)

    Journal of Bryant Brighteyes

    We did enough killing of minor enemies for Neera to go up a level and for us to have enough gold to buy her an archmage robe.

    We then killed Meilum before going in search of Amoy. That resulted in him giving Neera a belt.

    We returned to Baldur's Gate where killing a mage provided Neera with a ring of wizardry.

    We decided it was time to investigate the Iron Throne and having done so realise that we will have to return to Candlekeep.

    Before doing so, we thought it best to honour our agreement to help Shandalar as it appeared urgent.
    It was a profitable venture and Neera is on the point of levelling up. The kiss that she gave me indicates that she is rather fond of me. Let's see what develops. Perhaps it was the cold on ice island that made her reluctant to shed clothes. Everyone but Neera has reached the level cap.
    Post edited by Wise_Grimwald on
  • EnuhalEnuhal Member Posts: 741
    Dassareth, Undead Hunter with a custom party, Update 11

    Previous updates:
    On to the Druid Grove - mostly in order to get Cadrax the Dwarven Thrower +3. With Death Spell, I felt ready to take on any number of trolls - though it turns out that the current version of SCS spirit trolls on tactical are a) not affected by Death Spell and b) use their flame strikes and greater commands in rather unpredictable ways. Still, there aren't that many of those. After dealing with the shadow druid groups, clearing the troll mound was no trouble:
    To kill the Rakshasa, I used the "Enchant Weapon" spell (this one does get a bit of use in this run, not only for Belhifet - Dassareth won't get a +3 throwing dagger until we enter Ust'Natha, and there are a decent amount of opponents which can only be hit by +3 weapons or better) and a few traps. Cernd took down Faldorn, and I bought myself the Dwarven Thrower, also getting Dassareth the Shield of Harmony, greatly increasing her survivability thanks to the various immunities.
    Next up, I made my way to the Umar Hills. Being an Undead Hunter with Azuredge made getting to the Shade Lord relatively simple:
    So, the Shade Lord: First order of business: Run away in order to avoid his aura, while also dealing some ranged damage:
    Next up: Wait out the the Shade Lord's immediate physical defenses while taking down the Altar. I caught the Shade Lord casting some type of Necromancy Spell at Rowin and was able to activate SI:Necromancy just in time:
    Finally: Kite and kill the Shade Lord while avoiding his spells as best as possible:
    Around this point, I generally started adding SI:A and Spell Shield for my spellcasters to my buff-list. Rowin is generally really well-protected by now - the only thing he usually doesn't have at his disposal is some kind of spell deflection effect. In any case, we went back to the city to buy a few more items before clearing out the main level of the sewers:
    De'Arnise keep was Dassareth's next target. The lone Yuan-ti mage, our first possibly challenging encounter, had insufficient prebuffs to deal with our hasted charge:
    With their heavy physical damage output and strong combat buffs, the party is set up quite well against golems:
    SCS Tor'Gal has previously given me trouble. I decided to try and burst him down, trying to ignore his mages for the first few rounds of combat (with the plan to isolate any character being targeted by dispel magic in order to save as many buffs as possible). We started via Death Spell, taking down the non-mages. Cadrax was profiting from Rowin's newest spell: Improved Haste.
    Tor'Gal died within moments, and the yuan-ti mage soon followed:
    Finally, I took care of Mae'Var's guild. Since Mae'Var is quite weak in this version of SCS and we can have our vulnerable characters stay invisible to avoid backstabs, Rayic Gethras was the only challenge across the way. We countered PFMW with normal (or rather, excellent) weapons and his improved invisibility contingency with true sight:
    Next time, we will seek out the Windspear Hills and deal with Bodhi. Should be fun - vampire hunting is the perfect mid-level activity for our Undead Hunter bhaalspawn.
  • EnuhalEnuhal Member Posts: 741
    Dassareth, Undead Hunter with a custom party, Update 11

    Previous updates:
    In the Windspear Hills, after quickly taking down the Rukh Transmuter, I planned on having Dassareth deal with the vampires and other undead by herself, using Azuredge and Improved Haste. However, some of her foes slipped through the door she was attempting to close off, so the others had to defend themselves, using some quick nukes in order to minimize any level drain effects - though some minor restorations where needed:
    The party once again proved their effectiveness against any type of golem:
    Conster was trapped to death (and Firkraag left for later), and we used summons to deal with Samia's Guardians before taking her down as well.

    Next up, the party prepared to face Bodhi. Her most dangerous servant at this point, Tanova, immediately fell to the Azuredge effect:
    With that out of the way, it was easy for our Undead Hunter to chase down the remaining undead, with Lassal being the last one standing:
    Bodhi was defeated - even without traps - right as she appeared:
    Now, I thought about going to Spellhold, leaving the Planar Sphere, the Unseeing Eye and the Planar Prison for later. However, I decided not to do that - because I remembered that I have all the SCS options installed, including the one where all your items are taken away as you enter Spellhold - since I've never played with that one before, I want to gather a lot of experience before making my trip to Brynnlaw.

    So next time, we are going to see the three remaining potential Strongholds.
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