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Complete my party!

I'm having trouble deciding what should go into my sixth party slot for an upcoming (first) run of IWD:EE. My party thus far is:

Half-Orc Berserker
Human Undead Hunter
Half-Elf Bard
Elf Sorcerer
Half-Elf Avenger

So my team lacks a "proper" mage, a thief, and a "proper" cleric. The thief is the most critical as the Sorc and Bard I imagine can cover the lack of a proper mage well enough, and the Avenger, being a Druid kit, can cover the one thing that makes a Cleric critical. At the same time, "proper" Thieves are... I don't really like them.

So this seems to be my list of best options

Swashbuckler:
Though the typical thief combat of trapping and backstabbing is entirely uninteresting to me in a party based game, this kit seems like a neat alternative to a Fighter/Thief. Same skill progression as an unkitted, but gives up backstabs for survivability. I can't say I'm impressed, but who knows? Not me, I'm new to these games. This seems like the "safest" option as it lets me get Thief skills faster than any other option here, though I feel I have enough fighters, three characters in melee felt a bit messy to me in BG1.

Cleric/Thief:
Kill two birds with one stone. Cleric offers utility while Thief be there just for traps and scouting. Could even wear plate when not scouting.

Mage/Thief:
Adding another Mage seems less impressive than adding a Cleric to me, but still seems like it could be a good late blooming option? More mages are always good and playing BG1 for the first time recently I found myself wanting more despite having two of them. I want this but I also feel uneasy about it.

Swashbuckler(5)->Dual to Cleric:
When I played BG1 I dualed Imoen to Mage. It had a great payoff but I was super scared that I would run into nothing but traps for the time she didn't have her Thief skills. I hear IWD is a much more linear game and this makes me feel a bit on edge about dualing out of Thief especially. But I know if I get through it it'll be worth it in the end. 5 Levels should be enough to bring Find Traps and Open Lock to 100 or at least reasonably close to, as well as pick up a little extra survivability from Swashbuckler.

Swashbuckler(5)->Dual to Mage:
Nothing to say about this one that wouldn't just be repeating thoughts from other options.



Thoughts? Opinions? Anything to help me make a decision?

Comments

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    FMT is the best thief IMO. The C/T would go nice but I dislike it.

  • NifftNifft Member Posts: 1,065
    Half-Orc Cleric / Thief.

    19 Strength makes for a very decent melee or sling user. Sure, the bonus is not multiplied on backstab, but you have a much better chance of actually hitting with a backstab.

  • WowoWowo Member Posts: 2,058
    Swap half-Orc beserker for a Human Berserker and then dual to cleric at level 7.

    That opens up your last spot for a FMT or one of the thief characters you list above.

  • T2avT2av Member Posts: 202
    I just recently did a lvl 10 swash to cleric dual in iwd. It was worth it, cleric levels up pretty fast, and you get find traps, lock, traps all at 100, plus those wonderful swashbuckler bonuses. Had him in plate, he was a beast and my tank.

    No mage/theif. You already have a bard, and scrolls are not that plentiful.

    Do you play with any mods? Apr on spec, is awesome for the swash/cleric dual.

  • WowoWowo Member Posts: 2,058
    T2av said:

    I just recently did a lvl 10 swash to cleric dual in iwd. It was worth it, cleric levels up pretty fast, and you get find traps, lock, traps all at 100, plus those wonderful swashbuckler bonuses. Had him in plate, he was a beast and my tank.

    No mage/theif. You already have a bard, and scrolls are not that plentiful.

    Do you play with any mods? Apr on spec, is awesome for the swash/cleric dual.

    Unless the game is modded/cheated a Swash->Cleric can't specialise in any melee cleric weapon except staff and club.

    If a Swash cleric could get 2 pips in flail even without the APR I'd totally like this build too but it's just a bit meh otherwise. Many more interesting ways to combine cleric and thief with other classes.

  • SacredNymSacredNym Member Posts: 13
    Sorry I haven't replied yet, been busy working through the last bits of BG1.
    Wowo said:

    Swap half-Orc beserker for a Human Berserker and then dual to cleric at level 7.

    That opens up your last spot for a FMT or one of the thief characters you list above.

    Dualing the Berserker sounds like a great idea. Don't know why I didn't think of it.
    Though, suggesting an FMT in a full party seems odd. What's your reasoning behind that? Considering an FMT's experience would be spread so thin. I always saw triple class characters as being more for small parties or solo games.
    T2av said:

    No mage/theif. You already have a bard, and scrolls are not that plentiful.

    Do you play with any mods? Apr on spec, is awesome for the swash/cleric dual.

    Scrolls are that rare in IWD?
    As for mods, I've got a few QoL and cosmetic things from the BG2Tweak pack but otherwise I'm keeping it pretty vanilla.

  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited July 2015
    SacredNym said:

    Scrolls are that rare in IWD?

    Unfortunately yes, they are a lot rarer in IWD than they were in BG.

    Baldurs Gate was very open worlded, and if you wanted a specific spell scroll, then in most of cases you could generally just take a detour to the relevant town/merchant, or a specific dungeon and pick it up. Not only that, but as there were so many spell merchants, you could always find multiples of most spells very easily. Baldurs gate also had a lot of enemy wizards, so you were always picking up scrolls.

    IWD is very linear, your following a set path throughout most of the game, and generally have to wait until you reach a certain part of the game before you can obtain specific scrolls, and then you may be restricted to only having one (At least until even later in the game). The main spell merchant in the game doesn't even offer you his full stock right off the bat, you have to wait until specific chapters for him to update with higher level scrolls. Finally, enemy mages are not nearly as common as they were in BG, and the game seems a lot more melee focused.

    This can be pretty tedius if your playing solo, or in a small group (Where you level up a lot faster), I was around level 10-11 before I obtained my first level 3 scroll in a recent solo game for example (I had empty level 4, 5 & 6 spell slots open before I had a level 3 spell lol).

    If your only playing one arcane caster, and have a full party, then the game is balanced enough that you probably wont ever notice the lack of scrolls, its only really if your lowman, or have multiple casters that you will notice how thinly you spells w

  • WowoWowo Member Posts: 2,058
    @SacredNym that's not the case at all. A FMT has almost all of the functionality of a fighter and a thief from level 1 and the Mage spells are essentially a free or very low cost addition.

    The main impacts of a triple class compared to a FT (or FC in the FMC case) are lower thac0 and lower HP. However, being an elf gives +2 thac0 with bow anyway and, much more importantly, enemy AC in IWD doesn't get low enough to be a problem. Hp isn't a concern as the character plays as an archer until you have enough Hp and Mage buffs to mix it up in melee. Finally, when you eventually get level 6 spells you can cast Mislead which let's you backstab up to 10 times per round making the FMT the highest damage character in the game.

    A MT (possibly a gnome) is an alternative to a FMT and situationally stronger but it's a more advanced build that requires more micromanagement with an intimate knowledge of spell lists and item locations to get the most out of it.

    Scrolls aren't as rare as people make them out to be. Much of the scarcity that people experience is due to playing on insane difficulty due to the 100% xp bonus causing them to out level the scrolls that they receive. I definitely recommend to play on insane but to tick the "no xp bonus for insane difficulty" option. Furthermore, if you do want to fill out a spell book you can start the expansion from level 9 and raid the two shops there before returning to the main campaign.

    FinneousPJ
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