Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Categories

Axis & Allies 1942 Online is now available in Early Access! Buy it on Steam. The FAQ is available.
New Premium Module: Tyrants of the Moonsea! Read More
Attention, new and old users! Please read the new rules of conduct for the forums, and we hope you enjoy your stay!

Do you think that some spells are overrated?

2

Comments

  • Raven999Raven999 Member Posts: 20

    See, this is exactly what I mean. The thing about TS is doing things SAFELY - Hence my argument that it's a defensive move first and foremost.

    Agreed.

    I believe Time Stop is defensive as well. However, as I elaborated in previous posts, it's uses are quite diverse and can be very deadly. Time Stops can win battles even before they begin. But they also become quite useful in mage battles, when sending melee troops is not an option and spamming summons becomes boring.

    Those nice shiny weapons don't do much when you're faced with level 30+ mages (think Irenicus) that pop all their immunities and protections via Chain Contigency and Spell Trigger.
    Running away and sending in canon fodder until his spells run out is a very common tactic, but it gets old after a few play troughs and doesn't give you nearly as much satisfaction as facing him head on with your own high level mage(s)/sorcerer(s) (basically the only character who can stand toe-to-toe with Irenicus in the final SoA battle without being disintegrated, wilted or have his/her life-force snuffed out). Time Stop becomes invaluable.


    The other thing is, for players who favour the fighting/DSP classes (the majority) doing things "safely" doesn't make much sense. For players who favour the arcane spellcaster classes/specialty classes (the minority) doing things "safely" makes SO MUCH sense...since you don't have nearly as much HPs as the other classes.
    No shame in admitting that.







  • lroumenlroumen Member Posts: 1,866
    edited February 2017
    You actually do not lose weapon damage during a timestop, you only postpone it because during the same timestop your foes are likewise frozen (some exceptional foes withheld).

    What will be against you is that your offensive buffs run out since the timer continues to tick.
    What is your profit is negative buffs like stun/hold/blindness on your party and offensive buffs on your opponents because in both cases the timers keep ticking to completion so they last shorter. (poisoned party members will hate your mage).

    Now true sight.. there is a spell I never use on a mage. I always have a priest cast it.

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,399
    What I don't like about Time Stop is that it doesn't work against the enemies against whom you need it the most, because they're immune to it.

    tbone1semiticgodQuartz
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,089
    A design necessity, I fear, otherwise those fights would be trivial to break.
    lroumen said:

    You actually do not lose weapon damage during a timestop, you only postpone it because during the same timestop your foes are likewise frozen

    I was waiting for someone to make this argument. It's EXACTLY the reason I think TS is overrated - people just assume for some reason that the time spent in TS "doesn't count". Well, it does. Buffs continue ticking, as do spell effects. Your heart continues beating. The game keeps running. All that changes is that everyone else is effectively stunned, and that spells resolve with a delay. That's pretty much it. TS doesn't create "more time" somehow, it just prevents everyone else from actively doing anything - and that includes your party.

    BelgarathMTH
  • WesboiWesboi Member Posts: 403
    I play an all out aggressive style so most healing spells are mundane due to the way I play damage>CC>healing. But that's my general play style in all games.

  • lroumenlroumen Member Posts: 1,866

    A design necessity, I fear, otherwise those fights would be trivial to break.

    lroumen said:

    You actually do not lose weapon damage during a timestop, you only postpone it because during the same timestop your foes are likewise frozen

    I was waiting for someone to make this argument. It's EXACTLY the reason I think TS is overrated - people just assume for some reason that the time spent in TS "doesn't count". Well, it does. Buffs continue ticking, as do spell effects. Your heart continues beating. The game keeps running. All that changes is that everyone else is effectively stunned, and that spells resolve with a delay. That's pretty much it. TS doesn't create "more time" somehow, it just prevents everyone else from actively doing anything - and that includes your party.
    Which is exactly what i wrote in the remainder of my post.

  • chimaerachimaera Member Posts: 938
    lroumen said:

    You actually do not lose weapon damage during a timestop, you only postpone it because during the same timestop your foes are likewise frozen (some exceptional foes withheld).

    What will be against you is that your offensive buffs run out since the timer continues to tick.
    What is your profit is negative buffs like stun/hold/blindness on your party and offensive buffs on your opponents because in both cases the timers keep ticking to completion so they last shorter. (poisoned party members will hate your mage).

    I view time stop as a mass hold spell, tbh. Because it effectively sets the actions per round of everyone but the spellcaster (or the thief who set the trap) to zero, it means that the enemy won't have the chance to block or counter your actions. E.g. Aerie executing the lower resistance & harm & magic missile combination - she can try to do the same out of time stop, but the hold effect is what makes it so nasty. It's not about defense at all, because Aerie can make herself practicaly invulnerable with spell protections anyway. Or as someone once put it, it's getting several moves in a game, while your opponent gets none.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,089
    chimaera said:

    Or as someone once put it, it's getting several moves in a game, while your opponent gets none.

    Isn't that defensive almost by definition the vast majority of the time, though? You could still do all the things you do in TS outside of it, only you are risking enemies actually fighting back.

    There is some offensive component due to enemies protecting themselves, attacks always hitting, and so on, but there is also the real cost of the rest of your party also not being able to do anything. So either it's defensive (you reduce total incoming damage at the cost of total outgoing damage) or it's bad (you reduce total outgoing damage but don't reduce total incoming damage). The only time I could see it being offensive is in small parties or solo play, where the gains outweigh the losses.

    Just to be clear, though: there is nothing wrong with defensive moves. Just be aware of them being what they are.

  • chimaerachimaera Member Posts: 938
    edited February 2017


    Isn't that defensive almost by definition the vast majority of the time, though? You could still do all the things you do in TS outside of it, only you are risking enemies actually fighting back.

    Which is what I wrote in my Aerie example.

    In Baldur's Gate there are plenty of abilities, spells, items that are not damage-based (or their effects are dangerous not because of the damage they deal), therefore you can't reduce the game to a damage output vs input equation. I don't view time stop as defensive for the same reasons I don't consider spells such as as hold, feeblemind or blindness as defensive.

  • Raven999Raven999 Member Posts: 20
    Everyone made some good points so far.

    As far as forums go, this one seems to be amongst the more civilized.


    On the subject of Time Stops, I'd like to point out that while you're delaying everything and doing things "safely", the spell can be immensely useful if you need to turn the tides of a battle by fitting clones (Project Images/Simulacras) and/or summons into Triggers and Contingencies and activating those during the Time Stop.

    There's also the thing I wrote about multi-classed/dual-classed thief/mages gaining a HUGE bonus during Time Stops.

    I mean, a multi-classed thief/mage can be seriously lethal with his/her x5 backstab modifier...but you'll NEVER have the THAC0 of one of the fighting classes (except with perhaps Tenser's T.).
    So even if you're Mislead and Hasted or Invisible and protected via Spell Immunity: Divination, you'll still need to actually LAND your hits to lay down serious backstab damage. Doesn't always go that well against foes with high AC.

    Time Stop offers you HIT after HIT after HIT (all of them being backstabs if you're Mislead is activated).


    Of course, it's playing things "safe" again. But when you're playing with the SCS mod on Hard or Insane, the AI doesn't make you feel as though playing it "safe" isn't warranted.

    semiticgod
  • ArchGhostArchGhost Member Posts: 28
    I've always played the game with the mindset of blowing open any magical defenses and letting the beef brigade chop things up. When you focus on on killing most things through physical damage, and in a party setting, yeah, most magic starts to seem superfluous. This changes a TON if you ever play a solo caster or in a party with no strong warriors (which is micromanagement hell, but effective).

    IMO, overrated spells:
    -all direct damage spells except Magic Missile and Skull Trap
    -protective abjurations/illusions/alterations except Stoneskin and PfMW
    -most clerical spells in general. Nearly all are situational in use and never critical in a strict sense. Clerics enhance just about any role/task though.
    -Time Stop used by a non-sorcerer is just...meh.
    -Raise Dead. Newbie friendly, but power-word: reload makes it pointless
    -I find magic resistance lowering spells kind of not worth it unless there's only one target to deal with and it's extremely dangerous to beat up (i.e a dragon or the Demogorgon at low levels). It's just too much hassle. Not to mention you need multiple casts to make them effective on said targets.
    -Finger of Death/Chromatic Orb for the same reason. Fun, but unecessarily tedious.


    However, there are some spells that are just too good. I wouldn't call them underrated really, but they are capable of improving any party' ease of play if you use them vs. not:
    -For warrior/clerics, the DUHM+Righteous Magic combo (maybe throw in Holy Power if it will help your THAC0 too, usually only at low levels though). It really pumps up their fighting ability with 25 STR before Crom Faeyr, and makes them hit a max damage for the duration. Basically beast mode.

    -Remove Paralysis on clerics. Hold/Stun is nasty stuff in the middle of combat, and this works guaranteed to free any party members, unlike Dispel which always has a chance to fail.

    -Chaotic Commands. Aside from the use everybody knows against mind flayers, it protects against any confusion, charm, sleep (command) or hold spells as well which are super annoying, and it lasts like forever on a single casting. Great to cast in general on your tough guys when you know a lot of this stuff is going to be slinging around (Siren/Succubi are great excuse, as are vampires or any powerful spellcaster like a dragon or mage), so they don't end up going native and carving up your own party!

    -Haste. You go places quicker, it buffs your whole party/summons and increases damage output.

    -Improved Haste if you have good fighters (read: grandmastery) makes WW attacks obsolete.

    -True Sight. Nuff said.

    -Melf' Minute Meteors makes any mage a good damage dealer/casting disruptor, and helps them contribute more with less magical restriction (for instance, you can simply attack invisible-but-not-revealed casters with them if they don't have spell deflection/turning up in order to disrupt them)

    -Animate Dead, Summon Fire Elemental, Aerial Servant. Of course, Mordy Sword and Planetar too, but these come later. As long as you're sure to toss out a sacrifical lamb first to absorb the all-but-certain Death Spell(s), these powerful summons perform an important role as fodder and distractions, especially when whatever you're fighting is immune to most magic you can throw at it and/or resists abjurations through spell immunities (liches!). Aerial Servants and Planetars are also beasts in combat, while Skeleton Warriors, Fire Elementals, and Mordys make good tanks against certain targets: magic users, anything without +2 weapons/uses fire damage, and physical attackers, respectively.

    -Slow. No kidding, the best debuff in the game. Mages slinging this and Confusion in the opening round of combat before slinging MMM's and Magic Missiles really soften up the opposition, and party friendly unlike Web/Stinking Cloud or Silence 15' (boo!).

    -Project Image. The most powerful spell in any mage's repertoire hands down.

    -Obligatory Breach. Your protection piercing abjuration of choice (Secret Word, Pierce Magic, etc) makes a great companion to it so your mages can do something useful too.

    -Magic Missile is utilitarian in its capability to disrupt casters, chew through Mirror Images and Stoneskins so your fighters can hit true faster, and when spammed by multiple mages on a single target, can do a good bit of damage and stunlock things!

    -Skull Trap, because of its ability to be placed in advance, and its easier use in sequencers, is way better than Abi-Dalzim's or any other direct damage spell except Magic Missile. Despite the party unfriendliness it's easy to guard against for safe use.

    tbone1QuartzsemiticgodOrlonKronsteen
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,567
    Guys, guys, come. Time Stop is neither offensive or defensive. Its utility. It gives a specific advantage that is situationaly useful, and is useless as offense or defense on its own, being entirely dependant on comboing with other spells.

    Arctodussemiticgod
  • Abi_DalzimAbi_Dalzim Member Posts: 1,410
    ThacoBell said:

    Guys, guys, come. Time Stop is neither offensive or defensive. Its utility. It gives a specific advantage that is situationaly useful, and is useless as offense or defense on its own, being entirely dependant on comboing with other spells.

    Well, you could also combo it with regular attacks, in which case it's an offensive spell that ensures you hit every time.

  • Raven999Raven999 Member Posts: 20
    @ ArchGhost

    I agree with almost everything you wrote! : )
    Except perhaps the line about Skull Trap being way ahead of Horrid Wilting.
    I do agree that Skull Trap comes A LOT cheaper than Horrid Wilting, but the fact that Skull Trap isn't capped in the vanilla game is a mere oversight of the developers.
    SCS rebalances the spell and caps it at 12d6, which is still very lethal at x3 in a Spell Trigger, but more in line with the other level 3 spells that cap at level 10.



    Project Image is indeed THE most lethal spell in the game.
    I also agree that Finger of Death is crap, ESPECIALLY when level 1 Chromatic Orb does exactly the same thing with a slightly different save.vs spell.

    Lastly, I am in huge agreement with you about Slow.
    It truly is a really wonderful spells. Very hard to save against and very nasty effects.
    Doubly lethal if you open with a Greater Malison to soften up everyone's saving throws.

    I usually open up large battles with a Sequencer containing Greater Malison, Slow and Emotions.
    Greater Malison is just a huge bonus throughout the game and I feel it's often overlooked.


    One other spell that I haven't seen mentioned here (unless I've missed it) but that comes in handy on more than one occasion especially early on in SoA is Glitterdust.
    For a disabling/multi-purpose spell, it's really cheap (being level 2 and all) and is quick to cast.


  • NuinNuin Member Posts: 447
    edited February 2017
    I think it's interesting that some folks would say that Project Image is the greatest (or some slightly lesser equivalent of the word) spell when it does absolutely nothing by itself (your mage needs to have learned other spells or abilities/equipped specific gear for it to even be useful).
    Basically it's a synergy spell, similar to the way rogues are a synergy class, for example. They don't particularly shine by themselves, but when you're looking at a high level, well-equipped party even before mid-SoA it's obvious that synergy has a significant effect on power. People don't normally see the connection though.
    Just a random observation. Most people agree that Project Image is a great spell, but "greatest" usually goes to something else. I was expecting more mentions of HLAs or defensive spells or contingencies/triggers.

    Personally as far as overrated goes I also think it's more of a playstyle/group composition kind of thing. Do a no-prebuff/"reduced metagaming" sort of run with difficulty mods, for example, and suddenly spells like Timestop are nowhere near overrated.

    Post edited by Nuin on
    ThacoBellQuartz
  • WesboiWesboi Member Posts: 403
    I heard that female mages like time stop so they can make sure they get the last word in.

    Quartzthief
  • Raven999Raven999 Member Posts: 20
    Nuin said:

    I think it's interesting that some folks would say that Project Image is the greatest (or some slightly lesser equivalent of the word) spell when it does absolutely nothing by itself (your mage needs to have learned other spells or abilities/equipped specific gear for it to even be useful).
    Most people agree that Project Image is a great spell, but "greatest" usually goes to something else. I was expecting more mentions of HLAs or defensive spells or contingencies/triggers.

    You're right, Project Image does nothing by itself. It's simply the spell that makes the mage/sorcerer class outshine every other class in the game.
    You guys already know this, but for those who don't, a mage's projected Image has access to the real mage's ENTIRE spell book and cast spells at the level of the original mage.

    Pack three of those into a Chain Contingency and you have three clone mages of yourself with your FULL spell book, level 9 spells, HLAs and all.
    I don't need to elaborate on just how much potential this spells offers in terms of wreaking havoc and sowing chaos and destruction. The possibilities are virtually endless.


    Add to that the fact that the Images are ready for spell casting the INSTANT they appear and can straight away make the opening move by creating Simulacra of themselves.
    In about a second, your mage can pop up six spell casting clones of himself and have all of them unleashing their spell books on the enemy, without even using up a spell.


    Project Image allows the mage to double, triple or quadruple his firepower.
    When/if your Images are finally killed/unsummoned, your own spell book will be intact (apart from the Project Image spell(s) you used up.

    IMHO, no other spells even approaches the level of power Project Image offers.
    Of course, that's only my opinion though.
    Everything is debatable.

    QuartzOrlonKronsteensemiticgod
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,567
    Infravision OP, please nerf.

    ArctodusQuartzOrlonKronsteenArtona
  • QuartzQuartz Member Posts: 3,832
    edited February 2017
    Yes, many of the damage spells are highly overrated. A couple years back I realized I should start memorizing party-friendly AoE crowd control in place of messy AoE damage spells. Glitterdust and Slow for days!

    Slow is my favorite spell in the game, hands down.
    ArchGhost said:

    -Slow. No kidding, the best debuff in the game. Mages slinging this and Confusion in the opening round of combat before slinging MMM's and Magic Missiles really soften up the opposition, and party friendly unlike Web/Stinking Cloud or Silence 15' (boo!).

    ^^^ this ^^^

    OrlonKronsteenBelgarathMTH
  • GrimjackMVGrimjackMV Member Posts: 68
    lunar said:

    Ofcourse, when you are facing a high lvl mage, breach is your most important spell. But when facing tough brute enemies that are not overly magic resistant, damaging spells can still help a lot. Even ice storm can do quite damage if you stack a few of them on top of each other. 4 ice storms going equals 8-64 damage each round, no save.
    .


    Working on a Priest of Talos build and was looking for stackable per round AOE damage. Has anyone tested if we can stack multiple casts of Ice Storm and Fire Storm?

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 5,001
    edited December 2018
    Time-Stop overrated?

    With Robe of Vecna; Time-Stop, Improved Alacrity, Breach (or Spellstrike if necessary), Lower Resistance, Lower Resistance, Lower Resistance, unleash spell triggers Magic Missiles or Firebolts... dead mage!

    Vitor
  • AionZAionZ Member Posts: 3,026
    edited December 2018
    Balrog99 said:

    Time-Stop overrated?

    With Robe of Vecna; Time-Stop, Improved Alacrity, Breach (or Spellstrike if necessary), Lower Resistance, Lower Resistance, Lower Resistance, unleash spell triggers Magic Missiles or Firebolts... dead mage!

    Time Stop freezes your projectiles so you actually can’t dispel enemy buffs within its duration as your spells won’t hit the target. You can play around it by moving around so your spells hit in the right order but it’s really annoying and makes the spell less useful than it seems.

    Example: while playing a F/M I can’t Breach a mage’s PfMW to attack them while Time Stop is in effect. It’s extremely frustrating.

    ThacoBell
  • JLeeJLee Member Posts: 648
    I use Time Stop all the time, but for a much more banal reason than what I see here. I mainly use it to ensure all buffs are applied at the same time. I hate wasting rounds of Improved Haste while distributing it to all the melee types! PI>TS>IA>IHx4>Mass invisiblilty>Remove Fear and go get em!

    As far as overrrated spells go, I nominate summoning spells. I know people swear by them, but I never ever cast them. I walk the lonely road of feeling Diviners are the best specialist mages, at least as far as the spellbook is concerned.

  • AmmarAmmar Member Posts: 964
    Balrog99 said:

    Time-Stop overrated?

    With Robe of Vecna; Time-Stop, Improved Alacrity, Breach (or Spellstrike if necessary), Lower Resistance, Lower Resistance, Lower Resistance, unleash spell triggers Magic Missiles or Firebolts... dead mage!

    The problem is that the same sequence is usually more effective without the Time Stop in it. Just start with IA.

    ThacoBellBalrog99OlvynChuru
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,567
    Every single damage spell in the game is overrated. Except for Insect Plague. That spell is the hype.

    Balrog99
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 5,001
    ThacoBell said:

    Every single damage spell in the game is overrated. Except for Insect Plague. That spell is the hype.

    I find Horrid Wilting to be pretty useful and once in a while I can lure some enemies into a mess of delayed-action fireballs but other than that, yeah, by mid SoA most pure damage spells are pretty useless. Honorable mention to magic missile though, I always seem to find a use for those Shwetty little balls. I even killed Firkraag once in an all wizard party using only Lower Resistance and Magic Missile. I fired off all my sequencers preloaded with MM at once. I've never seen so many projectiles on screen at once. It was beautiful!

    ThacoBellBelgarathMTH
  • ArtonaArtona Member Posts: 1,044
    Healing spells - they simple are not strong enough to make difference in the fight and usually better way to reduce incoming damage is offense (killing high-damage enemies). Only exception is Heal, but casting is way too long.
    I also thing that cleric's protections aren't worth it - enemies tend to have infinite possibility to inflict negative status effect (like Umber Hulks). To protect five people from confusion, you need five 5 level slots, and that's a lot. It always is better to use proper gear or class abilities (hello, berserkers).

  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,567
    @Artona Mass cure scales with levels. I find it to be a great "oh crap!" button when fights get out of hand.

    ArtonaStummvonBordwehr
  • ArtonaArtona Member Posts: 1,044
    @ThacoBell - you're right, I forgot about that one. I agree and I think that Mass Cure is the best healing spell in game. Still, in my opinion it's better to use potion every or almost every time.

Sign In or Register to comment.