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Is there a list of the best weapons in the game?

I'd like one divided by random vs non-random loot.

Actually, I really just need the weapon types. I'd like to metagame my party.

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Comments

  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited July 2015
    The only weapon lists that I know of are old vanilla lists that don't include the new loot added by the enhanced edition.

    Mikes RPG Centre and Gamebanshee, both have decent lists (IIRC mike also identifies which items are random loot with a little (R) next to where he lists the items location).

    http://www.gamebanshee.com/icewinddale/weapons.php
    http://www.mikesrpgcenter.com/icewind/index.html

    Maybe someone else can supply details on the newer equipment?

    MusignySmilingSword
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    The problem with such a list is that there exists disagreement about what makes a weapon the "best". Also the nature of random loot, which many of the very powerful weapons are, makes metagaming difficult. Personally, I really really hate the idea of random loot in a system that not only requires you to pick out specialization beforehand but also rewards you extraordinarily for doing so (i.e. Grandmastery). It makes hitting the wrong weapon so very painful, RP implications aside.

    That being said, the above lists are only marginally helpful as they do not include the changes made by the EE, which switches several random loot pieces around. This results in some weapons not being obtainable AT ALL anymore, including absurdly powerful ones like the Morning Star of Action+4 (arguably the "best" weapon in the game).

    I have not yet seen a comprehensive EE list of items and their respective drop locations/random drop locations. If anyone knows of such a compilation, it would be interesting to see.

    JarrakulFinneousPJKenji
  • KloroxKlorox Member Posts: 780
    edited July 2015
    Thanks.

    Quick glance: looks like long sword and axe are the only "must haves"

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    Personally, I vote for long sword and flail. There are some very good flails, from early through to late game. Fire Flail+3 and Skullflail+4 are among the most damaging weapons in the game (losing only to a Paladin-only sword), and there is also a +1 APR flail. Long swords of course offer up to two Long Sword of Action+4, which are also very, very good.

    I've never been a big fan of axes. What axe is there that makes you want to go for them so? I'm not as well-versed in IWD as I am in BG2, may very well just be missing something.

  • KloroxKlorox Member Posts: 780
    There's a good axe +2 that returns when you throw it.

    I screwed up though and gave that proficiency to my Kensai... Pretty sure I won't be able to use it.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    I can't remember if IWD tweaked the rules, but in BG2 at least Kensai *can* in fact use throwing weapons, and are quite devastating with them, too.

    Personally I do not like throwing weapons a whole lot, doubly so in IWD where tanking is so easy and you rarely get hit by stragglers if you're careful (negating a lot of the advantage of ranged damage).

    FinneousPJ
  • MerinaMerina Member Posts: 303
    Not another "optimal or not" topic, please. Many of the weapons are for difficulty levels other than HoF.

    The returning Throwing Axe +2 is great if you like using it.

    The Battle Axe +2: Defender is good as a main axe for a shield blocker. It gives AC+2 and missile resistance +10%, speed 7. Add to that Benorg's Truth +3 which gives another AC +1 and 10% chance of stunning for 4 secs. That's an option if dual-wielding and not having found enough APR+1 weapons for the party yet.

    Bastard Sword +3: Defender, AC+2, SavingT+1, DR +10%, speed 8. Another bastard sword:Amaunator's Legacy +3 +2d4+3 vs.undead, 5% chance of Beltyn's BB on hit, sunray per day, speed 1. Plus Bastard Sword of Action +1 for APR +1. One doesn't need to go with a weak offhand THAC0.

    Only looking at weapon lists can become a problem. Several items are restricted to a specific alignment. For example, you could not use the Poisonous Battle Axe +2 if you're good aligned ... and if you're good aligned, you cannot wear the Shimmering Sash belt.

    Club, Katana, Mace and Shortbow are rare. If you think the clubs Peacekeeper +3, speed 2, and Svian's Club +5, speed 1, are good weapons, go for it.

    One cannot do much wrong when choosing almost any weapon, even if skilling two-handed. Long Swords, Short Swords, Flails, Warhammers, pretty safe. Random loot makes it interesting ... for me at least. The option to enchant/enhance weapons somewhere would be great, though.

    Planning ahead for late items in HoW, oh no. I enjoy the Blood Iron +4 short-sword from Burial Isle, 3 HP heal per hit, not good alignment, speed 1 ... and some items from Quinn at Lonelywood ... but if it were a random drop, it wouldn't matter much.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    Merina said:

    Many of the weapons are for difficulty levels other than HoF.

    This confuses me. What would change? How does a different difficulty setting make a weapon better or worse? HoF increasing the value of defensive weapons? Decreasing it? I'm not sure I get it, and I don't think I'd make any different choices regarding weapons between HoF and regular.

  • elminsterelminster Member, Developer Posts: 15,980

    I can't remember if IWD tweaked the rules

    Kensai's (and for that matter cavaliers) can't use any throwing weapons in IWDEE. Including throwing axes.

    Jarrakul
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    Well, there goes that. And good riddance, never felt right.

    JitterBug
  • MerinaMerina Member Posts: 303

    Merina said:

    Many of the weapons are for difficulty levels other than HoF.

    This confuses me. What would change? How does a different difficulty setting make a weapon better or worse?
    HoF mode creates monsters with many more hit-points. You need to hit those monsters much more often to kill them. Weapons that deal only a bit of extra damage for a few seconds don't add much value.

    Hammer Flail +2 15% chance of stun for 4 secs, speed 7. That's a low chance to stun the target for less than a round ... and you need to hit it many more rounds to kill it.

    Warhammer of Sparks +2 50% chance of 1d3 elec.damage, 10% chance of stun 3 for secs, speed 3. Okay, 1d3 extra damage, but the stunning time is a joke.

    Short Sword of Lesser Phasing +1 +1d2 cold damage, 10% chance phasing = 1 dam/s for 10 secs, 2 speed. That's a total of 10 extra damage. Not much. More interesting for backstabbing casters in non-HoF games.

    Chaos Dagger +3 20% chance of causing disease (1 damage every 2 secs for 8 sec, SvD negates), speed 2. Disease for 4 HP total with Save vs. Spell negate. 8 seconds is not much for HoF battles.

    Dagger of Venom +2, speed 0, 6 points of poison damage per round up to 15 damage ... that's neglectable for HP kings in HoF which may survive for several more rounds.

    Cancerous Bastard Sword +4 15% chance of infecting disease (1 damage every 2 secs indef.). not good alignment. Indefinitely! Good as it kills non-HoF enemies quickly enough.

    Bone Kris of Black Ichor +3 dagger, 20% chance 1 poison/sec for 3 rounds. At least some extra damage for 3 rounds, but still only 3 rounds. You better stop the target from acting against you for all the other rounds.

    Hold Fast +3 AC +1, slashres +15%, 15% chance of held for 1 turn (SvS negates). A rare example of long effect. One turn!

    The Sword of Days +3 immunity to slow and haste, 25% chance target is slowed for 8 rounds. Also a rare example of a slightly longer effect, but still only 8 rounds.

    I think there are more weapons where HoF mode means you better make sure you hit reliably and quickly ... no matter what weapon you use.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    Now I'm even more confused. If a weapon deals more damage, surely you'd use it in both HoF and regular. What difficulty it is wouldn't change the value of a weapon, more damage is still more damage. It's especially useful in HoF, but not any less so in regular, right?

  • MerinaMerina Member Posts: 303

    Now I'm even more confused.

    Try casting Dispel Magic then? :joy:

    It can't be so hard to understand that the tiny bit more damage doesn't matter much in HoF ... whereas for monsters with less HP extra poison damage per second or stunning effects are much more deadly.
    Of course, you can also enjoy disagreeing...

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    I'm not at the disagreeing stage yet, I'm still trying to understand what you are trying to say. Are you specifically referring to weapons with a timed damage component? Because there aren't a lot of those around, and I'm pretty sure the extra damage doesn't stack so you can still average it out to a damage/time ratio. Weapons with a high ratio are generally better, and that regardless of difficulty.

    So what exactly are you trying to say?

    kaja8
  • MerinaMerina Member Posts: 303
    @Lord_Tansheron

    Which I've answered before already ... even with several examples. It seems you reply before even trying to read the answers carefully enough.

    Perhaps rather than throwing in convoluted questions you could point out specifically which weapon you find good and explain what exactly you find good about it? That could make it easier to discuss it specifically and try to figure out what you don't understand yet.

    Weapons with a high ratio are generally better, and that regardless of difficulty.
    :grey_question::grey_question::grey_question: In none of the examples I've talked about the weapon's primary damage per hit and not about total damage per hit either ... just about tiny bits of extra damage that are not 100% per hit.

    In non-HoF games, if combat takes long that's because your heroes level up slowly, have a higher THAC0, miss more often. Then, if you hit, a 15% chance of phasing the target and doing 4 damage per second for 5 secs can decide between life and death for an enemy ... perhaps a backstabbed caster ... with less HP than in HoF mode. Same for poison/disease damage per second. If you hit, you may consider a 25% chance of causing +1d3 cold damage worthwhile. The extra damage (such as damage over time) may be enough to kill the enemy.

    And what about HoF mode? It increases HP of monsters to a great level while the weapon attributes stay the same. You need to hit the monsters many more times. Your heroes level up faster, have a lower THAC0. If you hit often and quickly, whether you wear a Dagger +1 or a Fire Dagger +1 with a 15% chance of +1d4 fire damage just doesn't matter much. You may still prefer the 15% chance of doing the bit of extra damage, ... and at the end of a fight you may have been lucky enough to do that extra damage a few times even ... but overall, did it matter? When talking about 5 APR or 10 APR with a low THAC0, any weapon would do massive amounts of damage in one round anyway. Or are we talking about fractions of a round? That if you're lucky enough to cause a tiny bit of extra damage a few times, it adds up in HoF too, and you save a few ordinary attacks per round?

    Are you specifically referring to weapons with a timed damage component?
    Not only timed damage but also timed effects with a low chance of happening.
    Because there aren't a lot of those around,
    There are enough weapons that add something that just doesn't matter in HoF. 15% chance of 1 damage per second for 10 seconds. So what? 5% chance of healing 1d6 self or max.HP +5 and 15% chance of healing 1d6 HP self is more interesting for non-HoF difficulty levels.

  • MerinaMerina Member Posts: 303
    Uh ... funny ... I've just found the Poisonous Battle Axe +2 in IWDEE for the first time. Speed 7, not for good aligned heroes, a 25% chance of doing 1 damage every 4 seconds for 100 seconds.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    edited July 2015
    I understand your examples, but your overall point seems puzzling to me. Specifically, I do not understand how a weapon would be better or worse DEPENDING ON DIFFICULTY. Sure, some weapons are better than others, as you illustrate with your many examples - but that is true for BOTH HoF AND regular.

    If Weapon A deals 6.5 average damage per hit, and Weapon B deals 7 average damage, then you'd probably want to go with Weapon B. It doesn't really matter where the damage comes from, whether it's static or based on a proc percentage, because you can just average that out in your comparison (either as per-hit or per-round, or any other objective metric you like; it's easy to model mathematically). In HoF you are less vulnerable to statistical outliers because of larger sample size (more hits because of higher HP), but considering the combat-heaviness of IWD even in normal mode you add up to enough hits to provide a respectable sample size, so this effect is negligible. You can average out pretty much any effect, including poisons, diseases, etc., which makes comparison fairly easy. "Special" effects like stuns are harder to evaluate, and harder to objectively quantify; but those effects aren't prominent enough anyway to warrant considering them over damage (unless it's personal preference, which cannot be objectively considered anyway).

    So, in summary, I would contend that in terms of damage, difficulty does not influence your decision-making. There may be other factors to consider, like personal preference, availability, etc., but those are also disconnected from the difficulty setting.

    The pretty much only thing I could imagine having an influence based on difficulty would be weapon selection for dual-class characters, as you can expect them to dual and regain more quickly in HoF, meaning you need to take into account earlier availability. But in terms of damage performance, I do not see any difference between HoF and regular choice.

  • MerinaMerina Member Posts: 303
    I'm not convinced you understand the examples yet.

    Once more, I have not referred to average or total damage in any of the examples. Those numbers are missing. I don't think it's worthwhile to worry about choosing 2d4+2 over 1d8+2, especially not if there are other attributes on the weapons ... I have not compared any weapons or their damage type either. A weapon could do more piercing damage than a blunt weapon, but the crushing damage would make the weapon better because of the monsters you fight. That doesn't interest me much, because as a last resort, a high-level hero skilled GM with axes can equip a flail any time and still hit acceptably.

    You can average out pretty much any effect, including poisons, diseases, etc., which makes comparison fairly easy.
    Fairly easy? A fallacy. Not only did you acknowledge that it's harder to rate stun effects, you neglect the probability of hitting the target. Lower level heroes in non-HoF games versus higher level heroes in HoF. Unlimited samples? No, you don't have unlimited tries to hit a monster and hope for some extra damage/effects to happen. Random numbers make it more complicated (... and how many random number generators are used anyway?).

    You need to consider enemy hitpoint values, too. Less hitpoints on an enemy imply that a few hits with a chance of extra damage can make a difference, whereas many hitpoints require you to hit many more times anyway to chunk away the HP. If it takes only a few hits to kill a monster, a single hit that triggers a 25% chance of doing additional 10 damage can be the crucial hit to kill the enemy at non-HoF mode. That's especially helpful, if you don't hit always. A killed enemy isn't a threat anymore ... And HoF? You need to roll the dice many more times while chunking away a HP buffer and be lucky enough to reach the expected value and trigger the 25% chance of extra damage multiple times. Is that worthwhile or important? I don't think so.

    Once you hit reliably and quickly, the difference betweens lots of weapons is neglectable. It simply doesn't matter much. One round less it takes to kill an enemy, one round more you lose due to two heroes stepping on their toes. Just pick an enchanted weapon for the weapon type you've skilled ... and hit as often and quickly as possible. Eventually you'll find another weapon that is +2 compared with the +1 you're using ... fine, be happy. Any interesting bonus abilities? Great. None? Don't worry.

    If you believe strongly in average numbers and hope for expected values, by all means, go for it ... if it makes you happy.

  • JarrakulJarrakul Member Posts: 2,029
    So, basically, what you're saying is that you get more statistical outliers against opponents with fewer hit points, because it takes fewer hits to kill them. That's true, as indicated by the Law of Large Numbers. Of course it's worth remembering that that means you get more long stretches (in terms of number of opponents) where the weapon's special ability doesn't proc. It's not clear to me which of those is a bigger effect, in terms of practical gameplay. I don't think it's as simple as you're making it out to be.

    What I will say is this: the effects of weapons with proc chances are far more reliable on HoF, again due to the Law of Large Numbers, which means things like expected value computations will model actual gameplay more accurately. This predictability can be very helpful for strategic planning, and should probably not be underestimated.

    Also, damage over time effects are much stronger against opponents with lots of hp, regardless of proc chance. This is because weaker enemies will generally die before the full damage is dealt. 10 damage over 10 seconds isn't seeing its full use if the enemy dies before 10 seconds pass. Stronger enemies, meanwhile, will take the full damage, because they'll survive the full 10 seconds. Obviously you'll still do better against the weaker enemy, but the damage over time effect is contributing more against the stronger enemy. All of that means that damage over time is definitely more valuable in HoF than in the base game, at least compared to lump-sum damage.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    Merina said:

    Fairly easy? A fallacy. Not only did you acknowledge that it's harder to rate stun effects, you neglect the probability of hitting the target. Lower level heroes in non-HoF games versus higher level heroes in HoF.

    How does it matter what level you are? If you're dual-classing perhaps, taking into account weapon availability in early game. But other than that? How does it influence your choice of weapon? Is there some weapon with a vast disparity between damage and THAC0 bonus that comes into play here? I'm not aware.

    And as for the stun effects etc. it's true those can't be easily quantified objectively, but then again they hardly need to be. There are no truly dangerous enemies in IWD that you need to stunlock reliably, since it's all either hordes and hordes of trash or bosses that are likely immune to stun. And in HoF you want more damage over stun anyway just so you can plow through the ludicrous HP pools faster. Without an SCS equivalent, damage is pretty much king.
    Merina said:

    Unlimited samples? No, you don't have unlimited tries to hit a monster and hope for some extra damage/effects to happen. Random numbers make it more complicated (... and how many random number generators are used anyway?).

    Personally I believe that even in regular mode, you have enough enemies and enough hits involved that you can safely ignore variance in your considerations. Average out the damage and compare with that, and statistical effects will have so little of an effect in either mode it's not worth choosing based on that. As @Jarrakul rightly pointed out, the Law of Large Numbers will flatten out results over time, and even IF you wanted to make variance a consideration in regular mode, the roll could go either way - once again making it a moot point.
    Merina said:

    You need to consider enemy hitpoint values, too. Less hitpoints on an enemy imply that a few hits with a chance of extra damage can make a difference, whereas many hitpoints require you to hit many more times anyway to chunk away the HP. If it takes only a few hits to kill a monster, a single hit that triggers a 25% chance of doing additional 10 damage can be the crucial hit to kill the enemy at non-HoF mode.

    This seems to be the core problem, from what I can tell. I advocate an averaging of damage values, i.e. in your example here you'd simply add 2.5 damage (25% of 10) to the average hit value and compare based on that. As detailed above, LoLN will eventually make it a smooth curve, and relying on anything other than the average is just gambling. If you want to make your decisions based on deviant scenarios that's your personal choice, but it can't be objectively correct.
    Merina said:

    You need to roll the dice many more times while chunking away a HP buffer and be lucky enough to reach the expected value and trigger the 25% chance of extra damage multiple times. Is that worthwhile or important? I don't think so.

    You are being facetious here, I assume? Of course you won't hit EV exactly, that's not how statistical approaches work. You base your decisions around the EV because that is the best you can do, and because if you do it enough, it turns out the way you think. Anything else is gambling and can go either way. Just because you don't hit doesn't mean you made the wrong choice.
    Merina said:

    Once you hit reliably and quickly, the difference betweens lots of weapons is neglectable. It simply doesn't matter much. One round less it takes to kill an enemy, one round more you lose due to two heroes stepping on their toes. Just pick an enchanted weapon for the weapon type you've skilled ... and hit as often and quickly as possible. Eventually you'll find another weapon that is +2 compared with the +1 you're using ... fine, be happy. Any interesting bonus abilities? Great. None? Don't worry.

    That is so incredibly unhelpful. "Do what you like it doesn't matter" essentially defeats the whole purpose of an argument, ESPECIALLY one that is by its impetus based around metagaming choices. Nobody is forcing you to choose between small min/max variables, but a metagaming call was what the OP was asking for; an objective analysis seems the best answer, and leave the subjective criteria to everyone to decide on their own, based on the objective facts at their disposal. Anything else isn't an argument.

  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited July 2015

    I've never been a big fan of axes. What axe is there that makes you want to go for them so? I'm not as well-versed in IWD as I am in BG2, may very well just be missing something.

    The axe of the Minotaur Lord is pretty sweet and unique, it's effectively a +4 two-handed battleaxe that can be wielded in one hand (plus theres a 1/4 chance of stunning your opponent every swing). I've been rocking it on my Dwarven Defender to good effect.

    It can be looted from one of the minotaur's in Trials of the Luremaster.

    image

    JarrakulMerina
  • MerinaMerina Member Posts: 303
    @Jarrakul

    Hyperbole ... I'm not saying anything about "statistical outliers", because the random numbers in IWDEE are a blackbox to me. Are there multiple independent generators, one per hero?

    All I say is that I don't think the weapon choice matters much.

    Are you playing IWDEE and measuring the duration of battles with a stopwatch? And if you finish a battle just fine, do you retry several times with different weapons just for comparison? If you notice that enemies absorb some points of crushing damage but your party doesn't face any problems killing them nevertheless, do you care?

    With my current test party I've cleared the Wyrms Tooth Glacier with just melee combat and a bit of ranged attacks in crowded places, ... and I cannot confirm any of the tested weapons to be "far more reliable". A few times I've seen a stun/panic/confusion effect for one or a few seconds ... and I've found and tested the Fire Flail +3 and other fire weapons, too.

    Feel free to do the maths on paper to find out whether there is the theoretical chance that the duration of a battle may be reduced by one round or fractions of a round, if doing average damage or reaching EV ... whatever. In 10 seconds, a hasted dual-wielding fighter does how many damage to several monsters that survive several rounds each? The odd 10 damage per 10 seconds may be additional 10 damage in total, but an ordinary +3 weapon may do more damage per round already

    In practical HoF gameplay, there are other factors that are much more important.

    @Lord_Tansheron

    No, I'm not being "facetious" ... I just don't think the extra effect of many a weapon is of any importance in HoF. Pick any weapon that does adequate damage, be done, profit. It is much more important to take notice of the rare weapons that make a big noticable difference ... such as the +1 APR weapons.

    On the contrary, if you're into role-playing multi-player games non-HoF, it can be entertaining to sneak up to an enemy and try to do poisoned backstabbing. In HoF, the party will certainly prefer a brute-force ambush.

    So I'm "incredibly unhelpful". Many thanks for that! :relaxed:

    The OP was hoping for a holy grail ... a complete list of weapons in IWDEE and where to find them exactly. One also needs to consider lists for other items, armors, headwear, shields, belts, boots ... whatever. With the wrong alignment, you cannot use an item at all. Within random loot you may not find what you hope for ... so you may be forced to run around for a long time with a weapon you don't like. Is that a problem? No, it isn't. Even skilling Clubs or Katanas is fine. Solemn Duty +3 isn't a bad weapon ... but it may not make the player happy, if hoping for many more Katanas to choose from.

    Consulting an incomplete or wrong list of weapons in IWDEE can result in the player making a disappointing experience, so better avoid that.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    @Genryu Interesting! I never noticed that axe was actually one-handed. That puts it way up there in terms of damage, nearly at the top - PLUS 25% stun for 1d4 rounds, which with high APR does seem fairly ridiculous. Good find! This is definitely something worth going for. Makes me wonder whether it wasn't originally intended to be 2h and just ended up as 1h by accident...

    @Merina Well, that certainly clears up my confusion. Now I know what you're about.

  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372

    Makes me wonder whether it wasn't originally intended to be 2h and just ended up as 1h by accident...

    I'm pretty sure it is intentional, the item description even makes reference to the fact:

    "It is finely balanced, and may be used one-handed".

    Jarrakul
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    Hm fair enough. Still impressive damage and a highly useful ability, I like! Now if only I had my TTT...

  • AerichAerich Member Posts: 110
    Getting back to the original post - my key weapon skills are - LS, Flail, Axe, Scimitar, Mace. However, any or all of them could be dispensed with, as the game is easy enough on a second playthrough to complete with almost any weapons. In those 5 skills you have the three guaranteed +APR weapons, an early returning ranged weapon, and two guaranteed available insta-kill weapons.

    Merina
  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859

    Hm fair enough. Still impressive damage and a highly useful ability, I like! Now if only I had my TTT...

    Interesting too if you use Kai with it. 5.5 extra damage per hit is pretty wild.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    If only it wasn't an axe... no Kensai->Cleric buff bonanza :(

  • WowoWowo Member Posts: 2,058

    If only it wasn't an axe... no Kensai->Cleric buff bonanza :(

    There is so many good blunt weapons already, why would you ask for more?

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,161
    What, I need a reason for dealing ludicrous damage instead of merely ridiculous damage? PREPOSTEROUS!

    JarrakulEmpyrial
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