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Solo WizardSlayer/Druid?

How bad can it be?
It'd get GM weapon using and some spells, but seriously limited in equipment.

Anyone accepts the challenge? Let's go and beat Sharevok to Melissan!

Comments

  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 1,592
    Two words: Fire Seeds.

    @semiticgod Knows the details.

    semiticgodThacoBellJuliusBorisov
  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 7,939
    You can read about the awesome power of Fire Seeds here, in the first post of the Exploits, Tricks, and Nonstandard Tactics thread. Wizard Slayers are especially powerful when using Fire Seeds. In a nutshell, a Wizard Slayer can use Fire Seeds to neutralize any mage no matter what their defenses or immunities might be. Unfortunately, I believe it's no longer possible to make Fire Seeds permanent as of v2.5, but you only need a few at a time anyway. Darts are an excellent backup, because you can alternate between nonmagical darts and the +5 darts from the Cloak of Stars to get past Protection from Magical Weapons and Improved Mantle, respectively (and even Absolute Immunity, if you don't have SCS installed).

    As it happens, I did a no-reload run of BG2 featuring the Fire Seed trick, and while my run was with a party instead of a solo character, and while my Charname was a Shadowdancer/Cleric instead of a Wizard Slayer/Druid, it may be very useful. You can read about it in the "Maybe this time" thread, starting here.

    Grond0StummvonBordwehrArctodusJuliusBorisov
  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60
    edited January 9

    You can read about the awesome power of Fire Seeds

    As it happens, I did a no-reload run of BG2 featuring the Fire Seed trick, and while my run was with a party instead of a solo character, and while my Charname was a Shadowdancer/Cleric instead of a Wizard Slayer/Druid, it may be very useful.

    There are a couple of major differences why the two are not equal, and why I have doubts:
    - ok, you can deal with mages. Actually, that was kinda obvious. Hardest encounters ever were No Magic Zone if you ask me.
    - shadowdancer is a rogue class, thus has Use Any Item, which simply negates the Wizardslayer's problems.
    - clerics have access to very good weaponry (Crom Faeyer, Flail of Ages etc.). Druids on the other hand have access to very limited, and underpowered weapon classes, namely daggers, spears, scimitars, clubs.
    - a team of 5 can pull through a 6th member nakked. Solo is a much harder cake.

    other issues:
    - you can have only up to 15 Cloak of the Stars darts. If the enemy has tons of HP, you'll be screwed.
    - most problems don't come from anti-magic weapon spells, and either way many enemy where it occurs have a natural immunity to nonmagical weaponry. So there is an issue here.
    - oh, and I see serious problems trying to dart Sharevok.

    Conclusion:
    -----------
    Yes, there is a trick where you can semi-easily disable mages. Even group of mages if they stand close together. But that doesn't mean you won the game.
    The case looks similar to the issue of Blades. On paper they are maybe the best DPS-kit. In reality that's only true in a group, and solo they have serious issues hitting the Big Baddies, where it'd count.

    PS: your shadowdancer-party was not just made from custom characters, but tended to die a lot (you temrinated for this the party before ToB). Solo you are not allowed to die.
    Yes, I know you did no-reload.

  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 2,499
    What mods, if any, were you thinking of? How about difficulty level and were you intending to include SoD?

  • PantalionPantalion Member Posts: 1,986
    twillight said:

    The case looks similar to the issue of Blades. On paper they are maybe the best DPS-kit.

    Where on Earth does this misconception come from? Blades are a terrible DPS kit.

    1: Bards are thieves. 1 APR, no specialisation, 10 max THAC0.
    2: Offensive Spin: +1 APR (does not stack with haste) +2 damage.
    3: No Improved Haste, no weapon whirlwind,

    Compare: A multiclassed F/M/T with no kit - which also isn't the best DPS kit, by the way.

    1: THAC0 always equal or better than the Blade.
    2: 1/2 APR and +2 damage from specialisation (does stack with haste). By level 7 fighter the F/M/T gets a permanent "offensive spin" - +2 damage, +1 APR. By level 13, that's +3/2 APR and straight up superior THAC0.
    3: Does get Greater Weapon Whirlwind, Improved Haste, Critical Strike...

    The only Mage/multi that might lose out to the Blade on physical DPS is something containing Cleric, and even then that's pretty debatable.

    As for Wizard Slayer/Druid, it should be doable. Soloing is typically easier than splitting exp six ways, you'll have no need to engage in any of the quests outside of those strictly necessary to acquire your massively restricted gear selection, an invisibility spell, plenty of summons to throw at mandatory encounters, and multiple ways to shut down the most dangerous enemies

    semiticgod
  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60
    Pantalion said:

    twillight said:

    The case looks similar to the issue of Blades. On paper they are maybe the best DPS-kit.

    Where on Earth does this misconception come from? Blades are a terrible DPS kit.

    From the original BG-series gamer walkthrough by DSimpson.
    The theory works like this:
    - get blade
    - put 3 point in two weapon style
    - put belm in 2nd hand
    - improved haste
    - profit.

    From epxerience me too know the above doesn't work, not where it counts. Bard has terrible attack/round, thac0, AC, dmg - and pretty much every problem you can come up with.
    And the faster advancement doesn't really help from a point. Until that, you can solve things gimmicky-way, but then things start to catch you up (if you want, you can reach ToB's exp-cap in SoA Act 3).

    Pantalion
  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 1,592
    @twillight I released a mod yesterday that alters some of the restrictions of the Wizard Slayer. You can check it out here.

    semiticgod
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 4,121
    Blades are the best single class DPS. If you want to talk multis, then DUH they are better. Multis completely break the power curve compared to single classes.

  • Jaheiras_WitnessJaheiras_Witness Member Posts: 370
    Don’t agree with that either. Even if all you care about is damage (ignoring survivability etc) then swashbucklers, kensai, assassin (backstabs), even straight mage or sorcerer (if spells count) would leave a blade trailing miles behind. You can work that out with some basic maths.

    Heck, even a straight fighter with some HLAs would leave a blade trailing. Probably some cleric and thief builds too if you factor in other party members casting spells on you or selfbuffing with potions and scrolls rather than spells.

  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60
    Ye, I'd be interested in too how Blade would outDPS a greater whirlwinding half-orc barbarian, who has 25 STR with all the bonuses of the game, fighter thac0, and more. Or a fighter with pure GM in his weapons. And they have like twice the HP of the bard. And ton of other things that help their survivability.

  • ArunsunArunsun Member Posts: 1,388
    Blades are extremely balanced and versatile characters:
    They have most of the defensive arsenal a mage needs.
    They have a very decent damage output. Not as much as some other classes, but still a very good one.


    If you compare them to Fighter/Mage, which probably is the closest class, well they teade some DPS for a much higher caster level (very useful with remove magic notably) and Use Any Item. Other than that they are very similar.

    But definitely there is no way they even compare to the DPS oriented class, in terms of damage output. They don't need to, either. They have plenty of tools to do many other things.

    Arguably, it's precisely that versatility that makes blades so easy to solo.

  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60
    Except that you never need versatility, and "balanced" here means there is no specialised way to deal with things, aka. bard is weaker than any other class when it comes to solo.

    For example:
    - "balanced" AC means bard will be hit
    - "balanced" HP means bard can't stand much hit
    - "balanced" thac0 means bard can't hit strong enemies in return
    - bard also suffer rogue number of attacks
    - "balanced" casting means has no access to the all-clear nuke spells

    These in sum tell why practicaly none solo with bard, and can't be find ANY playthrough with a solo bard anywhere (at least not into ToB).

    Raduziel
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 2,499
    twillight said:

    Except that you never need versatility, and "balanced" here means there is no specialised way to deal with things, aka. bard is weaker than any other class when it comes to solo.

    For example:
    - "balanced" AC means bard will be hit
    - "balanced" HP means bard can't stand much hit
    - "balanced" thac0 means bard can't hit strong enemies in return
    - bard also suffer rogue number of attacks
    - "balanced" casting means has no access to the all-clear nuke spells

    These in sum tell why practicaly none solo with bard, and can't be find ANY playthrough with a solo bard anywhere (at least not into ToB).

    You're being too harsh here - it's not difficult to solo a blade into ToB (at least in the unmodded game).
    - the availability of spells like mirror image, spirit armor and blur (quite apart from defensive spin) means a blade is indeed much more difficult to hit than a fighter.
    - stoneskins and PfMW means that even when a blade is hit he normally suffers no damage and thus needs fewer HPs than a fighter.
    - THAC0 is certainly worse than a fighter, but that's where 'balance' comes in. A blade has other options like use of summons, wands and damage spells to supplement his fighting abilities. His excellent defenses also means he can last longer in combat than a fighter and therefore doesn't need to damage opponents so quickly.
    - a blade can get up to 8 APR with improved haste, which is more than enough for most enemies.
    - for the rare occasions in which spells above level 6 are needed, scrolls are available.

    semiticgodRAM021
  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60
    Grond0 said:



    You're being too harsh here - it's not difficult to solo a blade into ToB (at least in the unmodded game).
    - the availability of spells like mirror image, spirit armor and blur (quite apart from defensive spin) means a blade is indeed much more difficult to hit than a fighter.
    - stoneskins and PfMW means that even when a blade is hit he normally suffers no damage and thus needs fewer HPs than a fighter.
    - THAC0 is certainly worse than a fighter, but that's where 'balance' comes in. A blade has other options like use of summons, wands and damage spells to supplement his fighting abilities. His excellent defenses also means he can last longer in combat than a fighter and therefore doesn't need to damage opponents so quickly.
    - a blade can get up to 8 APR with improved haste, which is more than enough for most enemies.
    - for the rare occasions in which spells above level 6 are needed, scrolls are available.

    A fighter is harder to hit when the enemy is dead. Even with blur and what not, which can be removed a lot of ways, let's involve the duration the fight lasts.
    Same for stone skin, where it's time to mention the casting time and casting delays required. While the fighter will simply Greater Whirlwind once, and nuke the field.

    Summons are entirely useless in ToB. Wands detto. What damage spells? Even if I'm not considering the substantial magic resist ALL enemy has in ToB, those "damage spells" are pretty limited to Magic Missles.
    And while certainly might have "excellent defenses", if it can't hit the opposition because of the looser thac0, that's doesn't worth a darn. Btw, most of the times you only need AC, and warriors will have that equalling them on the field.

    Actually, Blade can only reach 7 APR with Improved Haste. And that includes Scarlet Ninja To, Boots of Speed (which is definitly a bug), and Gauntlets of Extraordinary Specialisation (which admittedly none gets aside me).

    On high level spells: how many scrolls you can have? Can you have Summon Planetar? Improved Alactricity? No? Than what are you even talking about?

  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 2,499
    There are lots of ways to play the game successfully, not just one - and the blade's ability to take advantage of different methods is why it's a strong solo class.

    The blade can make his defenses extremely strong against any opponent in the game - spell immunity can be used to lock in buffs, with spell shield protecting even against beholders. Stoneskin has a casting time of only 1 which will rarely be interrupted in combat (even without considering the use of Amulet of Power or Vecna to get instant casting). If you're talking about HLAs with fighters using GWW then the blade can of course use spike traps to kill enemies before they even start to fight or time traps to give him a dozen or so automatic hits per trap ...

    Summons and wands can absolutely be used in ToB. Skeleton warriors are useful summons throughout the game, though you obviously have to match them against the right enemies (so don't send them all in at once against something that uses death spells for instance). A single wand blast may rarely kill enemies in ToB, but it doesn't need to when you can use it multiple times - and a wand of fire scorcher can affect multiple enemies at once. Damage spells include skull trap, which is my personal favorite of all mage spells. Not only doing good damage directly, but also allowing stacks to be built up for special occasions.

    As I suggested previously the blade doesn't need to hit as often as a fighter. However, if you're really struggling to hit then try engaging malisoned enemies in a layered field of webs - even in ToB there are very few enemies that will survive that. Or if you want more of a fighter experience then use Tensor's to give you fighter THAC0 on top of mage buffs.

    Blades are not limited to a single weapon with increased APR - so you can have Belm in one hand and Kundane in the other for instance. That gives 4 APR which can be doubled to 8 with improved haste.

    In relation to scrolls I wouldn't expect those to be used regularly - the only occasion when I would be at all likely to resort to those would be in the final fight against Mel (and then only if I'd decided not to just immediately kill her with traps). You don't get planetars or improved alacrity because those are HLAs for mages / sorcerers - blades get their own power-packed HLAs as I've already referred to.

    Arctodussemiticgod
  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60
    "spell immunity can be used to lock in buffs, with spell shield protecting even" - for 1-2 seconds. Ye, fine.
    And again: along the defense must rise the offense too, as bard is without both.
    And I tell you, even 0 casttime canand will be interrupted regularly where you'd need you spells - 8 monsters kicking you donkey.

    "If you're talking about HLAs with fighters using GWW then the blade can of course use spike trap" - I said we're talking about ->ToB, so definitely including HLAs. Now as you are so darncreative, show me defeating Ravager w/o traps! "There are lots of ways to play the game successfully, the bard is the strongest!" - prove it, I challenge you! No spike traps. Beat it! Use wands! Let's see what Ravager thinks about that!
    Or trap Melissan. The first time. Ye, that's kinda problematic.

    Let's see whatenemies you have in ToB you wanne pit your 1-2 skeleton against: 5+ drow hordes, dragons with infinite invisible stalkers, werewyverns, eyes ... Do I need to continue?

    Mailsoned enemies on web... You mean those 50% magic resist drow hordes in a pit? Or those eyes? Are you serious? Or just not realise you solo, and think playing party?

    weapons: forget Belm and Kundane. Those hit absolutly nothing in ToB. And even if they would, the enemy AC is sohigh, and bard thac0 is so low, you won't ba able to hit squar.


    But I see a challenge forming: your choice of weapon must be Belm + Kundane for the entire game (except clay golems). You may not use spike traps. You may not get Gauntlets of Extraodinary Specialisation. Must kill Ravager by Skeleton summons, wands, Greater Malaison and Web ONLY. And you must do all fights faster then a fighter or a mage! Let's do it! Bard is strongest?
    My bet is against you...

  • ArctodusArctodus Member Posts: 792
    edited January 18
    Since we already had this discussion before, I'm only gonna clarify one point about this : nobody said that bard are the strongest class, because they're not. A fighter/mage is arguably much stronger in the BG saga at any point in the game. What we're trying to tell you is that they're strong enough to meet any challenge the game will throw at you, because they're a flexible class. If you play a bard like a fighter, he will suck, it's true. But they have other things going for them. They have more than enough power to beat that game on their own, that's all we're saying.

    Grond0semiticgodRAM021
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 2,499
    edited January 18
    twillight said:

    But I see a challenge forming: your choice of weapon must be Belm + Kundane for the entire game (except clay golems). You may not use spike traps. You may not get Gauntlets of Extraodinary Specialisation. Must kill Ravager by Skeleton summons, wands, Greater Malaison and Web ONLY. And you must do all fights faster then a fighter or a mage! Let's do it! Bard is strongest?
    My bet is against you...

    I don't understand the basis for the challenge. I'm suggesting that a blade's strengths are because it can use a range of strategies, but your challenge is suggesting restricting those to ones inappropriate for that particular enemy.

    I only ever play no-reload, but I'll happily play a solo blade in my next attempt to try and demonstrate it's got the tools to be able to make progress throughout the game B).

    RAM021
  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 7,939
    twillight said:

    "spell immunity can be used to lock in buffs, with spell shield protecting even" - for 1-2 seconds. Ye, fine.
    And again: along the defense must rise the offense too, as bard is without both.
    And I tell you, even 0 casttime canand will be interrupted regularly where you'd need you spells - 8 monsters kicking you donkey.

    "If you're talking about HLAs with fighters using GWW then the blade can of course use spike trap" - I said we're talking about ->ToB, so definitely including HLAs. Now as you are so darncreative, show me defeating Ravager w/o traps! "There are lots of ways to play the game successfully, the bard is the strongest!" - prove it, I challenge you! No spike traps. Beat it! Use wands! Let's see what Ravager thinks about that!
    Or trap Melissan. The first time. Ye, that's kinda problematic.

    Let's see whatenemies you have in ToB you wanne pit your 1-2 skeleton against: 5+ drow hordes, dragons with infinite invisible stalkers, werewyverns, eyes ... Do I need to continue?

    Mailsoned enemies on web... You mean those 50% magic resist drow hordes in a pit? Or those eyes? Are you serious? Or just not realise you solo, and think playing party?

    weapons: forget Belm and Kundane. Those hit absolutly nothing in ToB. And even if they would, the enemy AC is sohigh, and bard thac0 is so low, you won't ba able to hit squar.


    But I see a challenge forming: your choice of weapon must be Belm + Kundane for the entire game (except clay golems). You may not use spike traps. You may not get Gauntlets of Extraodinary Specialisation. Must kill Ravager by Skeleton summons, wands, Greater Malaison and Web ONLY. And you must do all fights faster then a fighter or a mage! Let's do it! Bard is strongest?
    My bet is against you...

    Respectful behavior is mandatory per the Site Rules. Not recommended; mandatory. @Grond0 has disagreed with you without challenging your credibility or issuing challenges.

    For the record, Alesia has already done a solo no-reload run of the entire saga with a bard, with SCS and Ascension to boot. They are indeed quite capable of handling ToB.

  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60
    Either way, I think that wizardslayer/druid would rely on Harm and reload - a lot.

  • _Nightfall__Nightfall_ Member Posts: 57
    Yes a blade can finish the game without traps, including the Ravager. I consider it one of the most fun classes to solo and have done several different runs with different methods. Of course one of my favorite is the Swiss Army knife and that gives so many options, wands meh, they can use every item or weapon in the game. Staff of the Magi, Carsomyr, something for every occasion, I like them because her bag of tricks is so very deep. To each their own though.

    A druids summons and energy blades made soloing ToB, until the final battle, so easy. I have never been able to solo Mel with a druid. I have done it with a 22 Kensai/23 Druid, it took a few tries if I remember right. Fyi, druid levels were murder. I have also done it with a Shapeshifter/Fighter with the old paw dispel exploit. Not proud of that one but it was fun. Maybe a Wizard Slayer/Druid is possible would be fun to try.

    Grond0Arctodus
  • twillighttwillight Member Posts: 60

    a
    For the record, Alesia has already done a solo no-reload run of the entire saga with a bard, with SCS and Ascension to boot. They are indeed quite capable of handling ToB.

    Heared the claim, seen no proof. Also, who knows what those mods do with the game-balance, so even IF there'd be proof, it'd be debatable.

    Make a claim - give to evidence. When a person goes against pure numbers, that's not disagreement. I consider that trolling.

    Yes a blade can finish the game without traps, including the Ravager.

    A druids summons and energy blades made soloing ToB, until the final battle, so easy. I have never been able to solo Mel with a druid. I have done it with a 22 Kensai/23 Druid, it took a few tries if I remember right. Fyi, druid levels were murder. I have also done it with a Shapeshifter/Fighter with the old paw dispel exploit. Not proud of that one but it was fun. Maybe a Wizard Slayer/Druid is possible would be fun to try.

    Again the claim w/o proof, and contrary to experience. Do it, upload the video, give the link.

    On druids: I had a lvl 9 berserker -> druid dualclass. Passed the whole thing: https://forums.beamdog.com/discussion/comment/675794#Comment_675794
    Was a challenge. None says any class/kit/combination would be actually impossible. But there are good nominees to the "weakest".
    Bard is one. Still need to see if it can defeat Amelissan (for the first go, as the rest is just formality with traps and a scroll of wish if necessary). My other nominee is the wizardslayer/druid (no boots of speed, no potions, very limited inventory). Maybe someone has other idea - open to it,

  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 1,661
    twillight said:

    Make a claim - give to evidence. When a person goes against pure numbers, that's not disagreement. I consider that trolling.

    What numbers?

  • _Nightfall__Nightfall_ Member Posts: 57
    Um... didn't realize that confrontational was the word of the day.
    I play for fun. I have no reason to lie and absolutely no need or desire to prove anything.

    Alesia's stuff should be around somewhere though, it gave me the interest to play a bard in the first place.

    With that I have run out of interest in continuing this.

    Borek
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