Howdy, Stranger!

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

Categories

Planescape: Torment: Enhanced Edition has been released! Visit www.planescape.com to purchase and check for details.
Attention, new and old users! Please read the new rules of conduct for the forums, and we hope you enjoy your stay!

Green again

OK, after getting busy with work, vacations, and stuff, it seems that while I occasionally hang out in the forum, I've not actually played the game in around 12 months or so - so putting matters to rights, I picked up my crazy 97-point elven archer (105-point after the Tomes) and set forth into BG2EE.

I am SO out of practice!

Early plan of grab my party up front so they share xp seemed to work - Jaheira from Chateau Irenicus, then Jan without encounters, before grabbing Aerie, and then Rasaad - who will be my front line. The rotating 6th spot lets me complete all NPC quests before setting on Neera in the final slot.

So far so good - we clean up the copper coronet, slowly, so Anomen has embraced his daddy troubles. Time to dump him for Cernd, and clear out the druids grove for hopefully a couple of +2 weapons...

At this point, I should mention that I am happy to metagame enough to pick an order for quests, but try to avoid too much knowledge and shooting off-screen etc. while playing the game itself. Dimming memories help lose the details anyway ;)

Also, I am an inveterate hoarder, and will not sell anything to a store unless it is in stacks of 50 in some kind of bag, so there is a certain graveyard quest I want to get to, which will need +2 weapons...

So here I am, at 9th level, strolling into some early game content, and having my butt kicked something chronic!!

Trolls are eating me alive. Maybe I have the wrong party for dealing fire damage with 2 mages, 2 druids casting flaming sword (and one summing fiery elementals) and a fireshielded monk with flaming fists. Nope, that can't be it. Darn, that means it must be me then!

Maybe having 2/3 of my party under stone/ironskin leaves me vulnerable (the the non-skinned includes an archer - clearly destined for melee)? Nope, it must be me.

Maybe I am just taking so much damage I can't heal, with a cleric and 2 druids loaded with healing spells, stacks of 24 potions of extra healing, and a monk with lay-on hands. Darn, no, it must be me!

Maybe the problem is that I have turned the difficulty all the way up to standard (not core) rules, so I have max hit rolls and the monsters are wimps? Nope - still no other choice - it MUST be me!!!

No idea what I am doing so wrong, but loving that I am doing it so badly, as I have so much potential to learn again! I already "know" from other threads that I specializing the wrong (long) bow, but need around another million xp before I need to decide short bow or firetooth for the next mastery. I can see that my party might not have the synergies I had hoped for, and while it is still early enough to change plans, I am stubborn and going to see it through.

I suspect this is yet another PC who will die of boredom in ToB - a game I have never managed to get going with, but should make it to the end of BG2EE again, eventually, unless ME:Andromeda sucks me away for an extended period later this week.

Anyone else got stories of coming back to BG2 after a long spell away, and finding it harder to get back in the swing of things than you remember?

Or is it just me? :)
JuliusBorisovOrlonKronsteen

Comments

  • BorekBorek Member Posts: 69
    Trolls are nasty to be honest, they have a reasonable number of HP's and don't tend to fall over until you have dealt significantly more damage than you expect, they also hit hard and fast. Even with a full party you need to pick them off in smaller numbers if possible, plus missile weapons are not particularly good damage compared to melee, especially early on before those Archer bonuses start to add up.

    You have a couple of mages, i'd use some debuff spells such as Slow to make things easier, trolls shouldn't have particularly great saving throws so if there's a few of them you should slow at least 1. Also don't be afraid to use 1 character to kite a troll around whilst your others focus on another. If you have the range to start out maybe use Web/entangle spells to stop them in their tracks so you can rain missile death on them in relative safety.

    I find it works quite well not to focus on the fire damage until they drop to the floor, since usually whatever flame effect weapons you have do not tend to be the ones you are highly specialized in, at least that is what usually happens with me.

    But yeah, 2 mages and 2 druids, you're well set for Entangle and Web shenanigans, followed by Archer pin-cushion.

    OrlonKronsteen
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 1,037
    You could pull individual trolls away from a group to do them piecemeal, but you might consider that cheesy ...

    A more acceptable alternative may be to take advantage of the relatively poor THAC0 Trolls have. Thus, one character with a good AC can tank a group of them while the others melee round the edges or use missile weapons. Jaheira is quite capable of doing that using a shield, but any character can do it if they use mage buffs (particularly spirit armor and improved invisibility). If you used Jan in that role he could add things like blur, mirror image and stoneskin to give the trolls absolutely no chance :D.
    lunarGreenWarlockOrlonKronsteenGenderNihilismGirdle
  • lunarlunar Member Posts: 3,265
    edited March 21
    I agree with @Grond0, trolls have relatively bad thac0 and can be tanked with a good tank. Rasaad is not a good tank in the early get go. He has lousy ac, and no protection from criticals. Jaheira, with Helm of Balduran+full plate+enchanted shield+cloak of sewers+ring+1 and a belt (either piercing or crushing belt, depending on their damage) plus iron skins can tank them for a gooood time.

    Add slow and glitterdust spells from the back row casters, two cheap but very effective debuffs. Have Jaheira tank them with the above set up, have your pc keep shooting them arrows and a flame or acid arrow for the last touch. (you can buy some from various marts in Athkathla.) And they can fall easily.
    OrlonKronsteen
  • GreenWarlockGreenWarlock Member Posts: 1,049
    Thanks @Grond0 - had not noticed the trolls having THAC0 problems, but my party is not well armored. Jan would be an interesting target dummy indeed, from my current setup.

    @lunar - the problem is that I am using the druid grove as part of my bootstrapping to start gaining equipment. I don't have most of that list of things you want to equip Jaheira with yet. Admittedly, I am trying to say 13k for a belt of giant strength for Rasaad, just another 1500gp to go...

    (and yes, I did slowly beat this quest, but it was more painful, with more reloads, than I am comfortable admitting! and pulling the trolls apart more gradually was definitely key.)
    Grond0
  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 709
    I hate the trolls.
    Like you I find they hit very hard and also that annoying habit they have of not lying down when they are still engaged but near death. So find I have to micromanage encounters to ensure that the front liners give them enough room to collapse. Then you can actually kill them.

    I know you haven't asked for hints, but as you are at the swamps/Druid Grove, do make sure you pick up Belm for Jaheira, extra APR and it's +2.
    And as you are an archer, Tasheron bow in Trademeet?
    OrlonKronsteen
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 3,773

    that annoying habit they have of not lying down when they are still engaged but near death. So find I have to micromanage encounters to ensure that the front liners give them enough room to collapse. Then you can actually kill them.

    This is literally my biggest complaint in the game right now. It's infuriatingly annoying, and plagues every session because so many of the early areas are riddled with trolls. Surely there must be some mod solution to this ridiculous behavior.
    OrlonKronsteenGreenWarlockUnderstandMouseMagic
  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 709

    that annoying habit they have of not lying down when they are still engaged but near death. So find I have to micromanage encounters to ensure that the front liners give them enough room to collapse. Then you can actually kill them.

    This is literally my biggest complaint in the game right now. It's infuriatingly annoying, and plagues every session because so many of the early areas are riddled with trolls. Surely there must be some mod solution to this ridiculous behavior.
    Tell me about it, especially when dealing with a large group. Pausing and reading every troll status, redirecting the frontliners, trying to determine which red circle to aim for by my archers/mages (and on insane/SCS, there are a lot of trolls, one encounter in D'Arnis there were at least 10 packed together, the group was knee deep in troll guts)
    OrlonKronsteenGreenWarlock
  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 205
    @GreenWarlock I feel your pain, lol. I just went though TOB for the first time in years, and while most of it was okay difficulty-wise there were a couple of end bosses that kept dumping me on my ass. I don't ever remember struggling with the game like that before, except for maybe my first run when I had no idea what I was doing. I'm baffled. I don't have SCS installed and my party was at 6 million exp points but I was getting humbled. It took me more reloads than I can count. I'm not sure if it was more fun or disconcerting.

    As for trolls, though I have no proof I've often wondered if they were bugged. There are times when you're chopping away at them for ages, dealing well over 30 points dmg per round and they won't drop, while other times they go down early.
    GreenWarlock
  • GreenWarlockGreenWarlock Member Posts: 1,049
    @OrlonKronsteen yes - there is a known bug with trolls that hitting them interrupts their fall-down-and-regen script, so if you have too may folks hitting the same troll, you need to back off as it nears death. I don't /think/ that was my problem here, although it does not help.

    @UnderstandMouseMagic yes - bell might be helpful, but I am playing each map largely without meta knowledge. The challenge before me was the troll-mound, and I would literally need to perform a lap of the map after passing the mound, before coming back with belm - so I could not justify that. Tasheron wold have made sense if I went short bow in BGEE, but too late to rectify that one :). I am currently working through my poor meta to figure when I can take an iron golem for the elven court bow, having committed to not cheesing the bow grab (sacrifice a PC to dash in, hand off the bow, then simply raise).

    Meanwhile, a 9th level Cernd had a surprisingly easy task dispatching Faldorn, so back both gate for his personal quest, then I can pick up another NPC.
    OrlonKronsteen
  • SomeSortSomeSort Member Posts: 279

    @OrlonKronsteen yes - there is a known bug with trolls that hitting them interrupts their fall-down-and-regen script, so if you have too may folks hitting the same troll, you need to back off as it nears death. I don't /think/ that was my problem here, although it does not help.

    @UnderstandMouseMagic yes - bell might be helpful, but I am playing each map largely without meta knowledge. The challenge before me was the troll-mound, and I would literally need to perform a lap of the map after passing the mound, before coming back with belm - so I could not justify that. Tasheron wold have made sense if I went short bow in BGEE, but too late to rectify that one :). I am currently working through my poor meta to figure when I can take an iron golem for the elven court bow, having committed to not cheesing the bow grab (sacrifice a PC to dash in, hand off the bow, then simply raise).

    Meanwhile, a 9th level Cernd had a surprisingly easy task dispatching Faldorn, so back both gate for his personal quest, then I can pick up another NPC.

    I know you're cash-poor right now, but Strong Arm is a much better long bow than Elven Court Bow, and much less dangerous to acquire. It gives +3 THACO / +3 damage, (vs. Court Bow's +4 THACO / +0 damage), and its biggest weakness, (requires 19 strength), should be a non-issue for your Archer with his/her monster stats. Ribald sells it for 9,000 at neutral rep and charisma. If you have someone with 18 charisma, you get a 15% discount. If you can get up to 20 Charisma, (typically using the Nymph's Cloak for sale in Mae'Var's guildhall or the Friends spell), you get a 25% discount, which would drop the price to ~6800. Plus further discounts if your rep is high enough.

    You mentioned you've cleaned up the Copper Coronet, which means you should have the Tuigan Shortbow. I know you said you don't have shortbow proficiency pips, but honestly, it still might be a better choice for your archer right now; the extra attack per round is that good. If you have Grandmastery in long bows, stick with those for now. If you only have mastery or high mastery, I'd look at the numbers to see if it makes sense to switch.

    Really, though, I'd agree with others that your primary goal should be getting Jahiera's AC down, as a proper tank will make most of the early game a lot easier. Also, if you aren't opposed to a little "quality of life" looting, consider checking out level 1 of Watcher's Keep. Not only is your archer's unlimited quiver +1 and Ammo Belt in there, but I find the Crimson Dart +3 is also a godsend for Rasaad in early levels so I don't have to keep constantly babysitting him, (or, alternately, constantly reviving him).

    But, of course, peeking around early in Watcher's Keep could be considered a little cheesy, so it's up to you how you feel about it. But that unlimited quiver will be such a big inventory-management asset, especially once you switch over to Tuigan's full-time.
    Grond0GreenWarlock
  • GreenWarlockGreenWarlock Member Posts: 1,049
    So, managing just a session or two a month I am making slow progress, but making progress we are :)

    Finally saved enough to buy the giant belt for Rasaad, which make a big difference to hit combat effectiveness, just as he hits level 10. With the big boost to hit, I immediately swallowed that bonus by equipping Belm in his off-hand, and that seems to be working out. He can also swap to belm in the main hand when we need to hit something otherwise immune, like an annoying vampire ambush... Still trying to avoid traveling at night to avoid those though.

    After parking Anomen, and then Cernd, after completing their early quest lines, I have also completed Korgan's little ruckus, and now in possession of a couple of +2 weapons, freed a certain vampire who has a handy sack of treasure. Jaheira has recovered from a personal assault, and Jan has bid the love of his life farewell once more. I have just recruited a handy paladin into the rotating slot, and am going on a sewer-dive.

    Most useful fresh discovery is that Rasaad has an amazing superpower - he is one of the very few NPCs that Jaheira can raise with Harpers' Call without immediately exploding. Found this our the hard way during a vampire ambush...

    (this superpower may not be so special to everyone with a 2.x patch of the game, but while waiting for Aerie to gain some decent clerical power, Jaheira is all high level cleric slots I have)
    Grond0
Sign In or Register to comment.