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Druidic vs clerical magic

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Comments

  • bob_vengbob_veng Member Posts: 1,812
    Pantalion said:

    Which is better and why? - Eh. Druids get far worse buffs (and no sanctuary is a tragedy), their summons don't really compensate (Animate Dead is pretty darn great), but their overpowered level 5 spell is great, and Nature's Beauty is cheesetastic. A Mage/Druid would probably be better than a Mage/Cleric, but since they don't exist in BG, the best Cleric is better, and the Cleric/Ranger without the "fix" is second.

    Who should get the tomes? - Assuming 18 Wisdom for each, the Druid. The extra Insect Plague at 21 Wisdom is worth it, and Druids are almost completely reliant on level 5 spells to be relevant. Lum's machine to 22 for another Wisdom and if the Druid is a CHARNAME then good up that trial for 23 Wisdom and +4 Insect Plagues a day.

    mage/druid doesn't exist but the avenger is a significant step in that direction (for a large part of the game)
    tbone1
  • Rik_KirtaniyaRik_Kirtaniya Member Posts: 61
    edited November 3
    If only druids in the BG series could get some of those spells from the IWD spellbook! Sunscorch (Lvl 1), Alicorn Lance (Lvl 2), Beast Claw(Lvl 2), Static Charge(Lvl 4, basically Call Lightning that you can cast indoors as well) to name only a few of the great spells there. But since they aren't here, well, druids have to be satisfied with what they already have, which nevertheless is still powerful. I think the Developers should consider adding them to the BG series as well, it would re-balance those Lvl 1-4 spell lists.

    I sometimes wonder why Clerics get Barkskin....? [They shouldn't be getting it, barks are from trees, and trees are a part of Nature, and Nature is worshiped by Druids, and not by Clerics.]
    tbone1SkatanRedrake
  • ValciValci Member Posts: 22
    Currently doing an avenger run and I can't say I'm lacking for spells... Add to that the fact that the spider shift is a major mage killer from invis (and you can also cheese it in combination with web) and the fire salamander gives you some free troll kills at the least I'm very happy with the class...
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,441
    @Pantalion I wouldn't discount Druid summons so easily. Call Woodland beings is fantastic through the mid game and fire elemental moving into greater elemental summons is great through the mid to late game.
  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 1,660
    Sorry if I was unclear, I agree their summons are decent, but disagree that those summons are adequate compensation for what they lose, namely the aforementioned buffs and one of the most useful, and cheap, summons in the game (Aerial servant isn't too bad either, thanks to the inbuilt invisibility).

    Insect Plague and Nature's Beauty, on the other hand, supply amazingly powerful effects which are hard to replicate, and more or less singlehandedly justify the druid's inclusion in a party despite the areas in which they are lacking.
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,441
    The thing is, Druids aren't MEANT to be buffers. They are offensive summomers and casters. They lose nothing, because they buffs don't fit their role. That's like saying that thieves lose buffs by by not being mages.
    Skatan
  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 1,660
    A Druid and a Cleric are more like two kits on the same chassis than two classes with different battlefield roles. They both incorporate summoning, offensive and defensive magic, and stupid illogical equipment restrictions. Suggesting that they are in some way incomparable is misguided.

    Even if they were intended for different roles, one can still directly compare any two classes together and identify which carries a greater overall impact, and confirm that yes, thieves do lose out by lacking the ability to cast Shapechange, that Mages lose out on significantly less by lacking the ability to use Set Snare, and that these two are not of equal utility.

    Regardless, the reality is that a cleric's spell list is generally more robust, and their summons and offensive spells aren't significantly worse than the druid.

    Going further, Druids can't be dwarves or gnomes (a disadvantage), they can't be multiclass Mages (a disadvantage), their biggest perk as a Fighter/Druid is Iron Skins and Scimitar access (at the cost of badass cleric gear and buffs), while the daft Exp rate means that they take until 6e6 exp to reach their trademark 6 level 7 spell slots, at which point you may as well be a Fighter/Mage/Cleric if you have to be a Half-Elf anyway.

    While the druid is not without advantages, such as an early game level advantage (that turns into a crippling disadvantage), overall it's the specific spells mentioned that define the class and make it worth considering in a party roster, since they represent a big chunk of its overall utility.

    Cleric/Ranger is still better though.
    Skatan
  • tbone1tbone1 Member Posts: 1,173
    Pantalion said:

    A Druid and a Cleric are more like two kits on the same chassis than two classes with different battlefield roles. They both incorporate summoning, offensive and defensive magic, and stupid illogical equipment restrictions. Suggesting that they are in some way incomparable is misguided.

    In version 1 of AD&D, the druid was designed to be a subclass of cleric, just like ranger and paladin were sub-classes of fighter, assassin a subclass of thief, and illusionist a subclass of magic-user.

    Just FYI.
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,441
    @Pantalion "A Druid and a Cleric are more like two kits on the same chassis than two classes with different battlefield roles. They both incorporate summoning, offensive and defensive magic, and stupid illogical equipment restrictions. Suggesting that they are in some way incomparable is misguided."

    I completely disagree with this. They are not meant to fulfill the same roles AT ALL.
  • broshimobroshimo Member Posts: 19
    Pantalion said:

    Going further, Druids can't be dwarves or gnomes (a disadvantage), they can't be multiclass Mages (a disadvantage), their biggest perk as a Fighter/Druid is Iron Skins and Scimitar access (at the cost of badass cleric gear and buffs), while the daft Exp rate means that they take until 6e6 exp to reach their trademark 6 level 7 spell slots, at which point you may as well be a Fighter/Mage/Cleric if you have to be a Half-Elf anyway.

    Clerics get one level 7 spell at level 14 (1.45 million XP), two at level 17 (2.025 million XP), and three at level 22 (3.16 million XP). Druids get one level 7 spell at level 14 (1.5 million XP) and six at level 15 (3 million XP). In terms of XP progression, it isn't that big of a difference.

    Off the top of my head, I think the Skeleton Warriors are better than Fire Elemental, but both are good. The Skeleton Warriors have near-complete magic resistance, but the Fire Elemental hits harder, isn't slow as molasses, and is tankier in melee.
    Skatan
  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 1,660
    ThacoBell said:

    @Pantalion "A Druid and a Cleric are more like two kits on the same chassis than two classes with different battlefield roles. They both incorporate summoning, offensive and defensive magic, and stupid illogical equipment restrictions. Suggesting that they are in some way incomparable is misguided."

    I completely disagree with this. They are not meant to fulfill the same roles AT ALL.

    Asserting nonsense does not make it true. By all means formulate an argument as to how granularly you perceive class roles, however.
    broshimo said:

    Clerics get one level 7 spell at level 14 (1.45 million XP), two at level 17 (2.025 million XP), and three at level 22 (3.16 million XP). Druids get one level 7 spell at level 14 (1.5 million XP) and six at level 15 (3 million XP). In terms of XP progression, it isn't that big of a difference.

    Off the top of my head, I think the Skeleton Warriors are better than Fire Elemental, but both are good. The Skeleton Warriors have near-complete magic resistance, but the Fire Elemental hits harder, isn't slow as molasses, and is tankier in melee.

    Eh, it's not so painful single class (though pure and 13 Fighter dual clerics get more spells overall by cap than a pure or dual Druid), but for a Fighter/Druid waiting three quarters of the way through the exp cap for your next Druid level is pretty damning.

    Cleric level 21: 9/9/9/9/8/6/2 - Already has access to 7 HLAs from their cleric levels, their caster level is capped.
    Druid level 15: 6/6/6/6/6/6/6 - Gets their second HLA from their Druid levels. Their caster level caps in 1.5e6 exp.

    Cleric caps at level 25, for 9/9/9/9/9/8/4 spells including their holy symbol (9/9/9/9/9/9/5 from someone else's holy symbol, if you're a cheeky sort), 11 HLAs (22 total with Fighter/Cleric).
    Druid caps at level 21, for 9/9/9/9/8/7/7 spells including the heartwood ring (which is not an inherent class feature, and sadly cannot be readily duplicated), 8 HLA (19 total).

    So they do more or less win out slightly at the extreme end of the exp spectrum in multiclass Fighter, but it's a long haul to get there, not a very smooth ride, and F/M/C is still better, not least because they can cast Haste on those skeleton warriors.
  • NeverusedNeverused Member Posts: 364
    Yeah... The best distinction between Druidic and Cleric magic is that Cleric magic is generally better for physical combat, while Druids are primarily spellcasters. DuHM, Righteous Magic, Champion's Strength, Holy Power, and heavy armor are all great for F/C's while Druids have nothing really comparable besides Ironskins. On the other hand, Druids are significantly stronger in mage fights: Clerics have no strong ways to disrupt a mage after Silence becomes ineffective (Globes of Invulnerability and so forth), while there's no good way to avoid an Insect Plague outside of mods. Flame strike is usually a waste of a spell due to Mirror Image or Spell turning/deflection, not to mention the fire damage type.

    That being said, if I could have only one, I'd pick Cleric almost every time, but that's because I'm incredibly careless and really, really appreciate having Raise Dead innately. And I also prefer physically winning combats for whatever reason. But Druids can negate entire encounters with a single spell, something that Clerics are hard-pressed to do.
    Rik_KirtaniyaThacoBell
  • Rik_KirtaniyaRik_Kirtaniya Member Posts: 61
    Neverused said:

    That being said, if I could have only one, I'd pick Cleric almost every time, but that's because I'm incredibly careless and really, really appreciate having Raise Dead innately.

    @Neverused You might want to get that wand of resurrection from Ribald's as well, if reviving people is necessary in some fights, as you can recharge that wand by selling and buying (or stealing).
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,441
    @Pantalion "Asserting nonsense does not make it true. By all means formulate an argument as to how granularly you perceive class roles, however. "
    Hello pot, the kettle says hi ;)
  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 1,660
    Neverused said:

    Druids are significantly stronger in mage fights: Clerics have no strong ways to disrupt a mage after Silence becomes ineffective (Globes of Invulnerability and so forth), while there's no good way to avoid an Insect Plague outside of mods. Flame strike is usually a waste of a spell due to Mirror Image or Spell turning/deflection, not to mention the fire damage type.

    It's no "Insect Plague", but the 90% MR Animate Dead is a decent tool against mages (and you get so many level 3 spell slots you can send them en masse). The pure Cleric does get one inherent advantage over mages, since they, like Bards, hit level 40, giving them a 9 level advantage over a capped mage and a 95% dispel rate.
    ThacoBell said:

    @Pantalion "Asserting nonsense does not make it true. By all means formulate an argument as to how granularly you perceive class roles, however. "
    Hello pot, the kettle says hi ;)

    To the contrary, I've expanded upon and supported my position at length in previous posts, and have invited you to follow suit.

    To reiterate, Druids and Clerics have enormous overlap with spells: both have self-buffing options (including wildshape), both have summons, both have offensive spells, and both have healing spells. To suggest they don't have the same role "at all" is clearly nonsense, since they're about as different to one another as an Evoker and an Enchanter, and to say that you cannot compare the two is also nonsensical, as every class can be roughly measured against one another.



    Skatan
  • NeverusedNeverused Member Posts: 364
    Animate Dead is great until the Mage Death Spells and all your summons are lost. It's why not even Fire Elementals are reliable vs mages. If you spread them out, I guess?

    On roles: for the shared stuff, sure. I classify divine classes under the "I need Death Ward" role. But past that the roles differ significantly. Clerics are significantly better at handling brutes and melee: heavy armor, Hold Person, and all those aforementioned physical buffs. I think of them as front-line, generally. Druids should never be on the front lines before Elemental Shapeshifting, or if you're an avenger or shapeshifter, but even then you're locking yourself out of your spells. Druids are far better on the back line slinging spells.

    I posit that while they share the same chassis, they're about as comparable as a Bounty Hunter to a Shadowdancer. Both can fulfill the trapfindimg and lockpicking needs of a party, but they play almost completely differently otherwise.
    PantalionSkatan
  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 1,660
    Yeah, basically you have to spam them, a level 3 summon "chaff" is a decent tradeoff for a level 6 spell, and you should always have more dead than they do death spells. Clerics also get Gate, which is immune to Death Spell the same way Devas are, but they only have 50% MR and you can't direct them, unlike Devas which cost the same slot for less hassle.

    And sure, I agree that they have a different overall emphasis to one another, my sole contention is that they are by no means incomparable nor are they fundamentally dissimilar, even if they behave very differently under optimal play. I would contend that it's not "Bounty Hunter to Shadowdancer" so much as Bounty Hunter to Assassin, since they both have access to similar, if inferior, versions of the others' speciality.
    Neverused
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,441
    Druids and mages are a closer comparison than Druids and Clerics. They fill similar offensive roles.
    Dev6joffelinjo
  • broshimobroshimo Member Posts: 19
    Pantalion said:

    broshimo said:

    Clerics get one level 7 spell at level 14 (1.45 million XP), two at level 17 (2.025 million XP), and three at level 22 (3.16 million XP). Druids get one level 7 spell at level 14 (1.5 million XP) and six at level 15 (3 million XP). In terms of XP progression, it isn't that big of a difference.

    Off the top of my head, I think the Skeleton Warriors are better than Fire Elemental, but both are good. The Skeleton Warriors have near-complete magic resistance, but the Fire Elemental hits harder, isn't slow as molasses, and is tankier in melee.

    Eh, it's not so painful single class (though pure and 13 Fighter dual clerics get more spells overall by cap than a pure or dual Druid), but for a Fighter/Druid waiting three quarters of the way through the exp cap for your next Druid level is pretty damning.

    Cleric level 21: 9/9/9/9/8/6/2 - Already has access to 7 HLAs from their cleric levels, their caster level is capped.
    Druid level 15: 6/6/6/6/6/6/6 - Gets their second HLA from their Druid levels. Their caster level caps in 1.5e6 exp.

    Cleric caps at level 25, for 9/9/9/9/9/8/4 spells including their holy symbol (9/9/9/9/9/9/5 from someone else's holy symbol, if you're a cheeky sort), 11 HLAs (22 total with Fighter/Cleric).
    Druid caps at level 21, for 9/9/9/9/8/7/7 spells including the heartwood ring (which is not an inherent class feature, and sadly cannot be readily duplicated), 8 HLA (19 total).

    So they do more or less win out slightly at the extreme end of the exp spectrum in multiclass Fighter, but it's a long haul to get there, not a very smooth ride, and F/M/C is still better, not least because they can cast Haste on those skeleton warriors.
    Ah yeah I forgot the clerics get extra spells level 1-6 in between level 14-21. This is where the divergence in usage become pronounced. The cleric becomes the better support class, having additional casts of Protection from Evil 10', Death Ward, Chaotic Commands, etc., but like Neverused says, they still don't have the mage-disabling ability (read as: Insect Plague) of a druid. At 3 million XP, the druid truly becomes unparalleled at eliminating mages by spamming Storm of Vengeance, Nature's Beauty, and Insect Plague/Creeping Doom. The cleric is still the same support class, whose value rapidly diminishes as you reach endgame content, whereas the druid blossoms.

    As a multi, yeah any variation of cleric/_______ is better than fighter/druid with the smoother progression and the utility they provide to the party. But, only cleric/mage possesses the ability to shut down enemy mages in head-to-head encounter. I've never tried fighter->druid dual and it would reach that vaunted 15th level a lot quicker the multi. Probably amazing but rolling a fighter capable of dualing to a druid is so painful...

    Also, Joluv sells a druid-only staff that grants extra level 5 and 6 spells.
  • malachi151malachi151 Member Posts: 121
    The main reason not to bother rolling a Fighter/Druid is Jaheira. Yeah, you can surely roll a better Fighter/Druid, in a dual class, but it's not really going to be "better enough" to make it worth it IMO.

    I mean, you have Jaheira right there, in your face, and even if you roll your own, it's only going to be marginally better and it won't have Harper's Call...
  • NeverusedNeverused Member Posts: 364
    Well, the second reason to not bother rolling a Fighter/Druid is that the multi is kinda just bad. The Druid doesn't really help the Fighter parts; the first time I consider the two classes having real synergy is at 3 million experience, when you first get Elemental Shapeshift. This is simply terrible. You only get past the Druid 3m experience spike at 6m: for comparison, my last run through ToB didn't even REACH 6m. I ended on 5.7m/5.8m. I'd take literally any Fighter dualed into Druid than a F/D multi if we're just considering pure usefulness. Your token is a bit delayed, but you actually get more than 1 7th level spell before Amelyssan.

    Yes, there's Iron Skin, but it's pretty meh when you consider that you can't combine it with Ilbratha's Mirror Images due to Druids being unable to wield Short Swords.
    Pantalion
  • malachi151malachi151 Member Posts: 121
    What Fighter/Druids have going for them is mainly Ironskin, and the fact that they are a little more party friendly than Fighter/Mages in that they have more party buffs and healing for post-fight.

    But the bad thing about Fighter/Druids is that some of the Druids best spells are spells you really need to cast in battle, like Insect Plague. You can still do it of course, but usually when you play a Fighter/caster it's best to focus just on self buffs and not actively cast during fights.

    So for me I've never been able to justify running a charname Druid of any kind, because the advantages of self-made Druid over one of the available NPCs is never big enough. If you want a Fighter/Druid, then Jaheira is good enough. If you want a caster druid then Faldorn/Cernd is good enough. Faldorn is actually great if you want a Druid for BG1 because getting her late is a good thing as it lets you skip past the early bad levels and her summon is excellent.

    Faldorn kind of makes Totemic Druids pointless, because Totemics are much better in BG1 than 2, and Faldorn is like a mini-Totemic. Her summon is not as good as a Totemic, but it's close enough. If I use Cernd I never shapeshift him, I just use him as a standard Druid.
  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,514
    I've long been curious about a Druid to Fighter high level dual. Especially dualing to Kensai imho. It'd be slow, but could be viable with patience, like a high level thief to cleric dual.
  • malachi151malachi151 Member Posts: 121
    Kensai duals aren't good in general IMO. I think one of the things thats good about Fighter/Druids as tanks is the fact that they wear armor, so when Ironskin goes down you're not naked. Also remember that a Kensai/Mage can at least wear Robes, but a druid wouldn't be able to wear anything.

    Kensai really only start to shine around level 13, and don't really come into their own until 15+.

    IMO, any dual to Druid would need to be at or below level 11 so it would be easy to regain your prior class. If you wait until Druid 13+ then it will take a while to get your other class back.
  • NeverusedNeverused Member Posts: 364
    I will note that I have run Kensai -> Druid for no reason other than to have something to do with all those wretched level 2 Druid slots: Barkskin helps his armor problem slightly! :tongue:

    DreadKhanlolien
  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 1,660
    DreadKhan said:

    I've long been curious about a Druid to Fighter high level dual. Especially dualing to Kensai imho. It'd be slow, but could be viable with patience, like a high level thief to cleric dual.

    I may be incorrect if they've changed it in the recent versions, but I don't believe that dualing into a kit is possible without mods.

    On the other hand, if it is possible (or you mod/keeper it), then Druid 15 -> Fighter is a late (5e6 Exp) ToB build that gives 6/6/6/6/6/6/6 spells, a single Druid HLA, and 9 Fighter HLAs once you reach the ToB cap. As a level 28 Kensai that would be +9/+9 plus Grand Mastery (no gauntlets so -1/2 APR and 2 damage though). You would have Barkskin for 2 AC on top of Iron Skins, though unless you Insect Plagued and Beauty'd every mage (and why wouldn't you?) your tatty 16 caster level would dispel like paper.

    End result probably wouldn't be optimal, but if you're willing to wait out the awful Druid exp gap and then the awful dual classing exp gap it would at least be adequate with 6 level 7 spell slots.
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,441
    You cannot dual into a kit without modding.
    lolienRik_Kirtaniya
  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,514

    Kensai duals aren't good in general IMO. I think one of the things thats good about Fighter/Druids as tanks is the fact that they wear armor, so when Ironskin goes down you're not naked. Also remember that a Kensai/Mage can at least wear Robes, but a druid wouldn't be able to wear anything.

    Kensai really only start to shine around level 13, and don't really come into their own until 15+.

    IMO, any dual to Druid would need to be at or below level 11 so it would be easy to regain your prior class. If you wait until Druid 13+ then it will take a while to get your other class back.

    Yeah, but Barkskin helps with that for fights that matter. Note, I said Druid to Kensai, which indeed requires mods or hacks unfortunately, because it'd be interesting. I agree it'd be awhile to get back your abilities, but you can actually get much of what a Druid can do with potentially a very strong fighter. Iirc, you can even nab a Druid HLA, if you dualed at 15, and the full spell pool. You'll be a useless fighter for about a million XP, so its as noted a very unusual build not everyone would enjoy!

    I agree that Kensais kinda stink until lvl 13, especially knowing they couldn't use the gauntlets of expertise or superior spec.
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