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How do y’all handle beholders without the shield of Balduran?

24

Comments

  • Jaheiras_WitnessJaheiras_Witness Member Posts: 443
    Or you could just be a dwarf, enrage and chop them into tiny pieces ;)*

    Do not try this at home unless your name is Korgan or you just happen to be a dwarven berserker with -6 saving throws, 150+ HPs and a stack of potions.

  • BorekBorek Member Posts: 473
    Note that the PI/Sim doesn't have it's own contingencies, but the act of casting PI renders the caster disabled until the PI ends, so that will trigger the casters contingencies. I probably wasn't clear enough about how i was using it, hope that makes more sense. It would definitely be OP if the clones had their own contingencies/triggers etc haha.

    You'll have to recast them after you use a PI if you set them up this way, which can be annoying, so it's very much a strategy for specific encounters where you know they are going to be needed. Also yeah the HLA's copy over, if you use mods to remove the traps limit it can be beyond insane for a MT or FMT.

    i usually have normal contingency for Stoneskin until high enough to allow PfMW and use chain for either 3x Mordy sword or 3x ADHW, but i must confess by the time chain contingency scroll is available most of SoA is usually over for me as i prefer to complete the side quests in Ch2. With Staff of the Magi and/or stealth it's kinda overkill even in ToB, plus most of the remotely challenging encounters involve highly magic resistant enemies and even 3 ADHW's are way less effective than 1 Time Stop, dispelling via the Staff then massacring everything with 9-10 APR (assuming FM or FMT), for a MT at that point i'm mostly just PI > Planetar > Stealth > clean fingernails > Pick up loot haha

  • the_sexteinthe_sextein Member Posts: 580
    I've been using simulacrum since I was able to. I am starting TOB so my mages have a couple HLA's each. Even though PI sticks you in one place it will probably be worth it for those replica level 9 castings and HLA abilities. Bummer about the limitations but SCS really is balancing what I consider to be oversights in the original game design. Especially the quick item slots. That would have been killer. You could just cast protection from magic on every mage you come across and it would end the battle. lol. I remember when the game launched you could have a simulacrum cast a simulacrum of itself. This would allow for infinite casting and you could steam roll anything in the game using that exploit. I don't remember if Bioware fixed it or Beamdog but it needed to be fixed for sure.

  • QbaQba Member Posts: 7
    If I remember correctly in vanilla version beholders never used spells on summon monsters (I guess to prevent using cannon fodder tactics). So u could summon five monsters, make one character invisible and lead monsters to them without any visible party members. Instead of using magic, beholders tried then to meele monsters.

    Very cheesy but also very effective strategy. However I'm not sure if this still works in EE version.

  • HenryNYHenryNY Member Posts: 42
    edited May 10
    Just some observations in EE v2.x


    1) Elder Orb may cast Imprisonment on any of its enemies.
    2) Elder Orb casts True Sight if you approach it with a layer of invisibility.

    3) There are a variety of beholders in BG2, and the same type of beholders don't always behave the same way between SoA and ToB. So there may be certain noticeable inconsistencies.

    4) The Unseeing Eye is actually a weaker version of beholder, but still it can cast a seemingly unlimited number of ADHW if you try to keep a distance within its line of sight.

    5) You may approach a Hive Mother in stealth as she does not seem to have the innate ability to see through invisibility, but it seems to me that she WILL cast True Sight and is able to target you and strip you of all spell/combat protections with one anti-magic strike.




    I guess the OP's question in the below specific situation remains:

    In an unimpressive tiny room in ToB, you are instantly exposed to the gaze of 3x Elder Orbs led by a Gauth... How would you survive if you decide to not flee? Please note: You realistically only have a split of second to react before getting bombarded with beholder magic. Of course, if you have that unique shield equipped, you'll be fine. But not every char can wield that shield. More specifically, in a no-reload play on a highest difficulty setting, how would you survive without a shield? Judging by the replies here, I guess many players are unaware of the existence of that tiny room. So...let me ask this way

    Assuming you are a no-reload char solo playing on Insane... how would you survive the magic bombardment of a group of stronger versions of beholders without metagaming & without that shield?


    Note: if you kill them by keeping yourself out of their line of sight, that's a way of avoiding their magic attacks, not a way of surviving their attacks.

    Post edited by HenryNY on
  • SomeSortSomeSort Member Posts: 859
    HenryNY said:

    None of the above seems to have touched the real core of the OP’s question:

    You meet 3 Elder Orbs and something else, face to face, as soon as you enter a tiny room... totally unexpectedly. And you immediately realize you have nowhere to hide, because the space is too tight. What are you going to do? Flee? If you cast (mass) invisibility they cast 3x true sight. If you summon a Planetar, well they are no warriors, so they cast imprisonment to banish it.

    This... does not seem to be the real core of the OP's question.

  • HenryNYHenryNY Member Posts: 42
    @Borek:
    PI/Sim can always have their own contingencies (provided that they have the required spell), unless you install a mod to disable that.


    @the_sextein
    You may always have a simulacrum cast a simulacrum of itself, provided that it has the Simulacrum spell for use. That won't lead to infinite casting, as a Simulacrum clone of another Simulacrum is even further level drained such that it loses the ability to cast the required Simulacrum spell.


    @Qba: "in vanilla version beholders never used spells on summon monsters" -- this can't be true, as beholders are spellcasters just like liches. Unlike liches, however, they have the unique ability to skip casting time.

  • HenryNYHenryNY Member Posts: 42
    edited May 10
    SomeSort said:

    HenryNY said:

    None of the above seems to have touched the real core of the OP’s question:

    You meet 3 Elder Orbs and something else, face to face, as soon as you enter a tiny room... totally unexpectedly. And you immediately realize you have nowhere to hide, because the space is too tight. What are you going to do? Flee? If you cast (mass) invisibility they cast 3x true sight. If you summon a Planetar, well they are no warriors, so they cast imprisonment to banish it.

    This... does not seem to be the real core of the OP's question.

    The OP's question is : how to "handle" beholders without that famous shield? There are essentially two ways of handling them: one way is to avoid their attacks while killing them, the other to face (survive) their attacks while killing them. If you use kill them with cloud-based spells including Death Fog (not mentioned by anyone here) outside their visual range, you have picked the "avoid their attacks" way of handling them. If you act like Korgan, fighting them while being attacked by them, you have picked the "survive their attacks" way of handling them.


    The easier way is certainly to avoid their attacks while killing them. However, if you could always avoid their attacks, then how could it be difficult to handle them?! There would be no serious need for such a question as asked in OP.

    The harder way is certainly to survive their attacks while killing them. This is the "real core" part (as I called it) of the OP's question. If you cannot face & survive beholders' attacks, you have not answered the real core part of the question.


    Again, back to that tiny room: spells used by those 3x Elder Orbs include: Spell Trap, True Sight, Minor Spell Turning, Remove Magic, Imprisonment, Fireball, Spell Trigger, Contingency, etc., in addition to "standard" ray attacks. The Shield of Balduran can reflect beholder rays, but how can it reflect Imprisonment and such?


    I looked at my recorded video of my last run. I found that because there were 3x Orbs casting the same spells, they dispelled/disillusioned my Project Image even before I could cast Spell Immunity to protect it. I think, the way I faced & survived their spell bombardments was because they were so stupid that they treated me as another summon. My Chain Contingency instantly killed the Gauth, and they instantly wiped out my summons clean (as soon as the summoning spells had been cast). They could not dismiss my Planetar as a summoned creature, so they Imprisoned him. They kept trying to dismiss me with Death Ray, which gave me ample time to kill them with damaging spells and 3x extra summons. I have no idea why they didn't use Anti-Magic Ray and other most dangerous spells on me. Death Ray is absolutely useless on me, yet that's what they chose to use against me.

  • Joan_DaroJoan_Daro Member Posts: 108
    edited May 11
    HenryNY said:


    I guess many players are unaware of the existence of that tiny room.

    Are you talking about the room which can be avoided by a stone-to-flesh spell?
    I thought you'd know there's beholders in that room before entering? The mad mage mentioned something about it.
    Anyway. If I accidentally entered that room while doing a solo run I guess I'll try to start a TS/IA chain with a PI, and of course with the cloak of mirroring equipped... I skipped that room in my latest run but now I think I'm going to try it
    Btw spell immunities are casted instantly with ROV so imo as soon as your PI casted TS or IA it s safe

  • the_sexteinthe_sextein Member Posts: 580
    edited May 11
    HenryNY said:

    @Borek:
    PI/Sim can always have their own contingencies (provided that they have the required spell), unless you install a mod to disable that.


    @the_sextein
    You may always have a simulacrum cast a simulacrum of itself, provided that it has the Simulacrum spell for use. That won't lead to infinite casting, as a Simulacrum clone of another Simulacrum is even further level drained such that it loses the ability to cast the required Simulacrum spell.


    @Qba: "in vanilla version beholders never used spells on summon monsters" -- this can't be true, as beholders are spellcasters just like liches. Unlike liches, however, they have the unique ability to skip casting time.

    It's been 20 years so you will have to forgive me if I can't remember clearly. I think the problem was that Simulacrum was not considered a summon so it could get around the summon limitation and since a simulacrum could have multiple simulacrum scrolls in their inventory they could keep spawning and spawning. It didn't matter what level they were because they were meat shields. Traps spawn limitations, thieving from stores, using the wand of summoning to bring in unlimited monsters in BG1....they are all game breaking exploits that go against the point of the game in my opinion. Some of them have been fixed by Bioware, others by Beamdog and some of them by SCS. A couple still remain and I simply avoid them as best as possible.

    My advice earlier in this thread got me through BG2 on LOB with all of the hardest SCS options and I didn't use the shield of Balderin. I just finished SOA a few days ago and I killed every enemy in the game. If you walk into a room with a bunch of enemies and they kill you....re-load and pre buff before entering the room. Personally I will just use figurines to spawn quickly around the beholders and then have my mage with robe of vecna cast haste. All of my melee fighters rush them and overwhelm them. You need to be high enough level to take them on. Doing the Unseeing Eye or going to the underdark as early as possible is not advised on LOB mode or SCS. You can get away with it in vanilla but that was the reason they made the shield to begin with. If you want to play on ultra hard difficulties or not use the shield then simply wait until you are high enough level to overwhelm them with melee and summon force.

    If you are trying to get through an entire nest of beholders you will need to either sneak by or gas them using the tactics explained previously. The cloak of non detection will keep you hidden. So you can scout ahead and make sure the path is clear for the rest of your party to sneak by or go solo and terrorize the nest while your party stands around.

    Post edited by the_sextein on
  • ArunsunArunsun Member Posts: 1,571
    To anything that can disable your character, I believe the answer is always Berserker :smiley:

  • HenryNYHenryNY Member Posts: 42


    I think the problem was that Simulacrum was not considered a summon so it could get around the summon limitation and since a simulacrum could have multiple simulacrum scrolls in their inventory they could keep spawning and spawning. It didn't matter what level they were because they were meat shields.

    Having Simulacrum keep spawning itself cannot be done in original BG2 (at least with the final official patch). It cannot be done in any version of BG2EE, as far as I know. Simulacrum is not summon, which is true in both BG2 and BG2EE. The Simulacrum spell always obeys the cloning rules.

    In BG2 and BG2EE v1.x (prior to v2.0), a long-lasting very welcome bug is that Simulacrum does not respect the party summoning cap. So, a single Simulacrum can build a limitless number of summons, provided that it has enough time to cast the required spells. However, a clone is not a summon, so a single Simulacrum clone cannot make more than one Simulacrum clone of itself, no matter how many spells/scrolls it has.


    As for using clones as meat shields:
    not a good idea. Clones are dummy creatures that can never act on their own. Instead of making and using dummies (similar to scarecrows) as meat shields, your time would be much better spent if you make and use a similar number of powerful summons such as Devas, Planetars, and/or even Pit Fiends. They all can act on their own. They can all be sent (if under your control) into the fog of war, and they will fight even if you can't see whom they fight.


    As for killing Beholders:
    Most of tough summons can kill Beholders (including Hive Mothers) without troubles. Usually, the only thing that can deter your tough summons from killing a bunch of Beholders is Death Spell/Ray/Fog. Unless getting banished, 3 Skeleton Warriors are more than enough to kill the Elder Orb boss in the Unseeing Eye quest. That mighty rod that is supposed to be depleted on the boss is never really needed at all.

    The thing is: how can a player character do what those 3 skeletons do? The skeletons are not Berserkers and have no shield.


    My advice earlier in this thread got me through BG2 on LOB with all of the hardest SCS options and I didn't use the shield of Balderin. I just finished SOA a few days ago and I killed every enemy in the game. If you walk into a room with a bunch of enemies and they kill you....re-load and pre buff before entering the room....

    Which edition/version of BG2/BG2EE were you talking about?


    To me, the real meaningful part of the OP's question is NOT how to avoid nasty attacks. But how to face and survive Beholders' nasty attacks... like an enraged Berserker or like those skeleton warriors or... "like a good girl" as said by Gorion's Ward at the start of Bodhi's Gauntlet.

  • hellwalker31hellwalker31 Member Posts: 9
    try magic resistance spell on ur tank and fire missiles with the rest. dont forget haste and protection from petrification. the only problem is their anti magic rays. not really hard beasts.
    spell immunity abjuration against elder orbs and korgan with enrage are also good. berserker's enrage is the best anywa

  • the_sexteinthe_sextein Member Posts: 580
    edited May 15
    I'm using the latest version of BG2EE from the Beamdog client.(non beta). I have the latest version of SCS fully installed and patched through BWS. SCS has the hardest Beholder option enabled and BG2EE is on LOB mode.

    The OP asked how to beat beholders without the shield. I killed every beholder in the game without the SOB using my advice. I don't see how you think I failed to answer it? If you are looking for buffs that will allow you to fight beholders without being effected by their rays then the answer is "you can't" They are designed to force you to maximize long range AOF and APR with full powered summons. SCS and LOB force you to use those tactics on small groups and hit and run tactics on large groups. Just the way it is. The shield and cloak or mirroring were made so that non tactical players could get at least one character through the area with the use of those items. If you don't want to use those items then you need to use the advice in this thread.

    I already stated that the simulacrum bug was fixed by Bioware with a patch. Other bugs like the scroll usage was fixed by SCS. Using clones as meat shields worked fine if you had a whole army of them. I remember seeing screenshots of people abusing it. In any case, the specifics never mattered to me because I don't use exploits. I didn't care a decade ago and I care even less now that it's been fixed for over a decade. My point is that project image and simulacrums were overlooked and being exploited at the launch of the game and while Bioware fixed some exploits, Beamdog and SCS have critiqued it further. It's possible that chain contingency and sequencers with project image were just an oversight. Either way, its more fun and less cheezy to force an SCS challenge to the max in my opinion. It's just the way I prefer to play. I am always looking for ways to optimize APR and DPS but I try to play by the SCS rules because they feel more balanced and challenging to me. In my opinion some options like stealing a merchants entire stock and making infinite cash with the use of a couple potions of master thievery is game breaking and goes against the intended economy of the game. An exploit that has not been fixed by Bioware, Beamdog or SCS after nearly 20 years.

    Post edited by the_sextein on
  • HenryNYHenryNY Member Posts: 42
    edited May 16
    There are essentially two ways to defeat ALL enemies in the game, including beholders:

    (1) avoid their attacks while killing them: such tactics include extensive use of summons on the front line, Time Stop spells, hit & run, and so on.

    (2) face their attacks while killing them - and survive (if you don't, then you get killed)



    This thread is now almost back to square one, because we all know many ways to kill enemies without facing their attacks. That's the easiest thing to do to finish the game. However, using a unique shield while facing a whole nest of beholders is obviously not meant to AVOID their attacks! The Shield of Balduran is not meant to let you flee from beholders on your first sight of them. Instead, it's meant to allow you to face beholders & survive their ray attacks.



    After deliberating on this subject, I assembled here a few things to share with you all:




    How to Survive Beholder Attacks in Official BG2EE (as of v2.3)
    =====================================


    you can face all beholders (hive mothers included) and survive if you have the following gear/protections:

    (1) shield of balduran: this shield won't protect you from the nasty spells that a high-level beholder may cast, such as Imprisonment, Maze, Flesh to Stone, and so on. But the shield will not only block all the beholder ray attacks, but will also reflect them back to the attacker. Fortunately to you, beholders are not immune to their own rays. As a result, they will typically kill themselves while shooting rays at the user of the shield, well before they get a chance to cast nasty spells.

    (2) berserker's enrage ability: this is not the same as Minsc's unique ability or a barbarian's rage. It is a iconic ability of one of the fighter kits. The effect of the ability cannot be dispelled and thus makes all the nasty effects of beholder ray attacks totally ineffective. However, do note: an enrage berserker still takes damage from every source that he is not fully protected from. On a hardest difficulty, he can still go down quickly if taking enough damage from beholders.

    (3) spell shield: this is a unique protection available to high-level mages, sorcerers, and bards. It blocks all of the beholder ray attacks. This is one of the ultimate reasons why a solo, no-reload sorcerer can safely face all beholders and never get killed. Of course, as soon as the shield is down, you immediately open up to all beholder ray attacks. If you don't want to back down (i.e., choose to NOT avoid their attacks), you will typically have to dish out enough damage instead of bringing the shield back on. That's because beholders can attack you much faster than you normally cast spells.

    (4) certain potions/scrolls can also make you easily survive beholder attacks.

    (5) get 100% magic resistance: beholders don't lower your magic resistance, you are totally safe from most of their magic attacks, except for the nastiest spell Imprisonment, if you can manage to get 100% MR. There are at least two companion NPCs who can sooner or later achieve persistent 100% MR. But in the case of PC, it's not easy to get MR to 100% on a long lasting basis, unless you happen to pick a kit from a class such as Bard or Paladin.




    Regarding SCS Beholders in systematically modded BG2EE
    ===================================


    They are NOT harder than they are in the vanilla official game. They are just made different in many subtle ways that can satisfy the literal meaning of the word "smarter".

    In fact, if you understand the fact that SCS is not meant to let any enemy mages (beholders are special mages with special abilities) cheat, you may very well find the SCS beholders easier to face & kill without cheese, and without fleeing from them.

    Some observations on why they may actually be easier to face & survive:

    (1) they won't imprison your PC (that is your entire party if you play solo).
    (2) they give you magic immunity for 1 round after hitting you with an anti-magic ray.
    (3) you are also given more options to cheese.

    If you like cheese (killing enemies by multiple reloads on your PC’s multiple deaths is #1 cheese for all RPG games), SCS will happily let you fight more cheese with extra cheese.

    Anti-magic Ray is not a killing blow. It is what follows this ray attack that makes beholders extremely dangerous in vanilla game. In vanilla BG2 or BG2EE, immediately after getting hit by anti magic ray, you may be hit by a nastiest spell. Imprisonment bypasses MR and allows no Save. If this is what follows the anti magic ray, your game is over! (Strictly from a Role Play point of view, reload on death is cheating, or at least cheesy cheap). In SCS, that cannot happen. SCS allows you to fight beholders in a much less disadvantageous way. As a result they are somewhat easier to go toe to toe with and survive, despite the fact that beholders are always overpowered with or without mods.



    More about beholders
    =================

    At least in the vanilla BG2EE, if your PC ever gets killed by a beholder, you must have made some big mistakes. this is just like the case of Kangaxx. once you know his "trick" and how to deal with it, you should never, ever get killed by that floating skull again. Same with beholders.

    Well, the smarter beholders in SCS may or may not make you feel harder, but Kangaxx in SCS is almost like a different magic beast. If given the situation, he may follow you to the city streets and start to kill commoners. I just can't understand why Cowled Wizards won't try to stop him from using unsanctioned magic!

    Post edited by HenryNY on
  • the_sexteinthe_sextein Member Posts: 580
    edited May 16
    HenryNY said:

    There are essentially two ways to defeat ALL enemies in the game, including beholders:

    I agree, in order to reduce killing enemies by multiple reload I would like to restate that using option 2 against small groups of beholders and option 1 for dealing with large groups is the best option here.

    HenryNY said:



    How to Survive Beholder Attacks in Official BG2EE (as of v2.3)
    =====================================

    #1 OP asked how to face them without the SOB and number 1 on your list is to use SOB. You also criticized everyone in this thread for not answering the OP's question which is hypocritical in this case.

    #2 Berserker rage was already mentioned by multiple people in this thread like Arunsun and as you pointed out, It doesn't work. It helps but you will be destroyed in quick order even if you had a party of six berserkers.

    #3 This is a decent option for hit and run tactics solo or with an invisible party but you won't be able to do enough damage to a hive of beholders especially on LOB mode. You could make your party go invisible and use this method to do hit and run tactics which would be smart in my opinion but I find invisibility with wand of cloud kill to be easier and you will probably have to revert to that anyway by the time you reach the end of a hive.

    #4 I agree with this as well. If you shop around the various temples you can pick up as many helmets of charm protection as you have warriors. protection from fear, confustion, domination, stun ect are nice but they won't allow you to face a beholder hive head on. (Trying to take on a hive of beholders in their home territory head on is a silly idea and will obviously result in death.)

    #5 It won't work on a party so you will still have to hide half of your team and the characters who have 100% resistence will have a hard time clearing out a whole hive toe to toe because beholders can and will do physical damage as well. So you will still have to run off and hide.

    The purpose of the shield and cloak is to allow a non tactical straight forward approach of killing beholders. Point and click. Its cheezy and that is why people don't want to use them.
    HenryNY said:




    Regarding SCS Beholders in systematically modded BG2EE
    ===================================

    I disagree. I don't know anyone who thinks vanilla Baldurs gate is too hard so they install SCS to make it easier. It's factually the opposite. The Tactics option in SCS is harder than vanilla. The improved AI and tweaked spell system may not always be outright harder(in order to maintain balance) but overall it's harder. Better use of spells, the ability to steal the cloak and Shield of Balduran. Smarter contingencies and pre-buffs.

    We are all free to play the game however we want and I don' t look down on people who want to use the SOB on a vanilla game with the COM and project images loaded up with sequencers and contingencies. But, the OP doesn't want to use the shield or cloak and while he or she didn't state weather he used SCS or not ( I think it should be mentioned when you ask for help) I believe I have seen him in SCS conversations before and have reason to believe he may be using it. (Again, important for users to know when giving advice.) Because exploitive behavior like the SOB and project imaged chain contingencies are often eliminated in SCS making it much harder.

    Post edited by the_sextein on
  • HenryNYHenryNY Member Posts: 42
    edited May 16


    #1 OP asked how to face them without the SOB and number 1 on your list is to use SOB. You also criticized everyone in this thread for not answering the OP's question which is hypocritical in this case.

    Me criticizing everyone??? Very weird logic!

    I repeatedly pointed out the fact that most advice here were concentrated on how to avoid, rather than face, beholder attacks. I wished someone could jump in and offer a list of options of how to face & survive their attacks (with the Shield of Balduran being the #1 option for obvious reasons).

    Stating a fact, is not the same as criticizing everyone. Otherwise, the entire forum(s) would be just a place of everyone criticizing everyone else. If you want to disagree, please tell us:

    Is the shield NOT a totally valid option on my list?


    #2 Berserker rage was already mentioned by multiple people in this thread like Arunsun and as you pointed out, It doesn't work. It helps but you will be destroyed in quick order even if you had a party of six berserkers.

    Did you NOT read my post? I merely said that I had "assembled here a few things" to share with everyone.

    Is Berserker's ability NOT a totally valid option on my list?


    #5 It won't work on a party so you will still have to hide half of your team and the characters who have 100% resistence will have a hard time clearing out a whole hive toe to toe because beholders can and will do physical damage as well. So you will still have to run off and hide.

    Hmm, is that NOT a totally valid option for fighting/killing beholders without backing down?!

    By your logic, if not all party members can have 100% MR, then getting 100% MR is something that won't work on a party. Following your logic, if Edwin cannot use a mighty weapon (say Silver Sword), then that mighty weapon definitely won't work on a party. Realistically, how many different weapons can Edwin use? So, by your logic, as long as you have Edwin in your party, most mighty weapons won't work on your party for surviving and killing enemies, let alone beholders.

    Hmm, by your logic, if Viconia is also in your party, then Time Stop must be a spell that won't work on a party because Viconia simply can't cast/use it. If you then add Cernd and maybe Wilson to your party, then by your very logic, probably no weapons/armor/spells/whatnot will ever work on your party. What do you expect your party to fight with that will actually work on the party? Teeth? Well, actually even teeth won't work on this party, because Wilson can't fight with teeth.... hehe, how wonderfully genius logic, just kidding..


    HenryNY said:


    Regarding SCS Beholders in systematically modded BG2EE
    ===================================

    I disagree. I don't know anyone who thinks vanilla Baldurs gate is too hard so they install SCS to make it easier. It's factually the opposite. The Tactics option in SCS is harder than vanilla. The improved AI and tweaked spell system may not always be outright harder(in order to maintain balance) but overall it's harder. Better use of spells, the ability to steal the cloak and Shield of Balduran. Smarter contingencies and pre-buffs.
    Hmm, whom did you disagree with? Me?!?!

    And what did you disagree with? Did you disagree with what I wrote, or just something that you imagined? Where did I write that SCS makes BG2 easier or harder or neither easier nor harder?

    I guess you didn't read/understand my post before setting up a target to disagree with. You assumed the target was me. How unfortunate I am! I was merely talking about (and comparing) SCS & vanilla BG2EE beholders in (only) one context of how hard to face & survive their attacks.

    I made my effort to prove my point by giving a list of proofs. Are they NOT valid proofs?

    I hope you didn't disagree merely for the sake of disagreeing. If you really want to disagree, I hope you would point out how my proofs failed to prove my point. Please don't try to prove me wrong, if you only disagree with someone else. Again please note: my point has absolutely nothing to do with why people use SCS or how hard/easy SCS is vs vanilla game. I was merely talking about beholders! And only in one specific context!




    Instead of so many irrelevant distractions or remotely related topics,

    could you/someone else either
    ================
    (1) modify/improve the existing list of options for facing & surviving beholder attacks, or

    would you/someone else care to
    =================
    (2) offer a new list of options for fighting beholders toe-to-eye without you backing down?
    (I'd be all ears for that if you would!)


    Post edited by HenryNY on
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 3,741
    HenryNY said:

    (5) get 100% magic resistance: beholders don't lower your magic resistance, you are totally safe from most of their magic attacks, except for the nastiest spell Imprisonment, if you can manage to get 100% MR. There are at least two companion NPCs who can sooner or later achieve persistent 100% MR. But in the case of PC, it's not easy to get MR to 100% on a long lasting basis, unless you happen to pick a kit from a class such as Bard or Paladin.

    I think that the beholder death ray bypasses magic resistance, so you also need a guaranteed saving throw against that.

  • SomeSortSomeSort Member Posts: 859
    If someone asks "how do I deal with (thing that kills me)?", I still don't quite understand how "bypass the parts of the thing that are actually killing you" doesn't "touch the real core of the question".

    Hypothetical example: there's a hallway trap in the Spellhold maze. The trap cannot be detected or disarmed. If you go down that hallway, your character dies.
    Question: How do I avoid dying to the hallway trap in Spellhold maze?
    Answer: Don't go down that hallway.

    That answers the core of the question, right? The OP isn't asking "how do I avoid dying to the hallway trap in Spellhold while still going down the (completely unnecessary) hallway?" The OP is just asking "how do I survive this part?", and the way to survive is to not do the thing that will get you killed.

    Not-hypothetical example: Beholders have lots of ways to quickly kill your characters, as well as a (cheesy) hard counter in Shield of Balduran.
    Question: "How do y'all handle beholders without the shield of Balduran?"
    Answer: "Don't let Beholders do the things they do that result in you dying, or alternately do let them do those things but change circumstances so that they no longer result in you dying."

    Whether that answer includes hiding behind summons, bombarding them from out of their range, or creating an uber-tank designed to actually weather their assault, I don't get how that answer doesn't get to the core of the original question.

  • inkblowoutinkblowout Member Posts: 49
    edited May 16
    Cloudkill, Death fog, fireball or any other AOE spell which would damage them. Or if I'm feeling lucky, I'd go for a backstab and have my tanks and front line characters bombard them afterwards.

  • JoenSoJoenSo Member Posts: 683
    This all reminds me of when Douglas Adams was going to Komodo and asked a medical researcher for advice on how to handle the venomous animals they'd encounter.
    "Simple. Don't get bitten."
    "Alright... but if we do get bitten, what do we do?"
    "What do you think you do? You die!"

    This is why I don't like the kill-for-xp-system. Just to see a beholder and live to tell the tale should give you quite an amount of xp! But as it is, the game isn't designed to reward innovative ways to avoid or flee from things.

  • the_sexteinthe_sextein Member Posts: 580
    edited May 16
    HenryNY said:


    Me criticizing everyone??? Very weird logic!

    You said that everyone's advice failed to answer OP's question so yes, you dismissed everyone's input which I would say is the equivalent of being critical of others advice.
    HenryNY said:


    I repeatedly pointed out the fact that most advice here were concentrated on how to avoid, rather than face, beholder attacks. I wished someone could jump in and offer a list of options of how to face & survive their attacks (with the Shield of Balduran being the #1 option for obvious reasons).

    Later on in the thread you did clarify but what you wished for and what OP asked are two different things. OP specifically stated "without the SOB."
    HenryNY said:


    Stating a fact, is not the same as criticizing everyone. Otherwise, the entire forum(s) would be just a place of everyone criticizing everyone else. If you want to disagree, please tell us:

    I want to disagree, It's a fact that our advice involves avoiding being killed in direct combat with beholders it is not a fact that our advice fails to answer OP's question unless OP wants to come in here and say so. If he does then you wouldn't see an argument from me or anyone else. For now some of us simply think the advice given was adequate.
    HenryNY said:


    Is the shield NOT a totally valid option on my list?

    Given the title of this thread I would say no.
    HenryNY said:


    Did you NOT read my post? I merely said that I had "assembled here a few things" to share with everyone.

    Is Berserker's ability NOT a totally valid option on my list?

    I read your posts and you stated that our advice failed to anser OP's question and then you stated the same advice that was given previously in your list. I agree that this will help delay the inevitable in a direct confrontation with a hive of beholders. In a small fight it will help insure that you survive however I thought we had already agreed previously that strong summons and fast warriors would be enough to win in a small battle.
    HenryNY said:


    Hmm, is that NOT a totally valid option for fighting/killing beholders without backing down?!

    If your unprotected party members are not playing hide and seek then they will die and your two characters will not have enough hitpoints and APR to destroy a hive of beholders in melee. In a small battle yes this will help insure that you come out on top. I don't think it's necessary but it's certainly a valid point in small battles.
    HenryNY said:


    By your logic, if not all party members can have 100% MR, then getting 100% MR is something that won't work on a party. Following your logic, if Edwin cannot use a mighty weapon (say Silver Sword), then that mighty weapon definitely won't work on a party. Realistically, how many different weapons can Edwin use? So, by your logic, as long as you have Edwin in your party, most mighty weapons won't work on your party for surviving and killing enemies, let alone beholders.

    Hmm, by your logic, if Viconia is also in your party, then Time Stop must be a spell that won't work on a party because Viconia simply can't cast/use it. If you then add Cernd and maybe Wilson to your party, then by your very logic, probably no weapons/armor/spells/whatnot will ever work on your party. What do you expect your party to fight with that will actually work on the party? Teeth? Well, actually even teeth won't work on this party, because Wilson can't fight with teeth.... hehe, how wonderfully genius logic, just kidding..

    My logic is that you need to use proper tactics to survive and if you don't then you die. If you are going up against an enemy that will kill your entire party if you don't have 6 characters with silver swords then yes you would end up dead if one of them couldn't use a silver sword. However I don't see how that analogy applies to the actual conversation at hand. If a time stop will work then it will work. If it doesn't work then it doesn't work. Weather or not Viconia can cast one is irrelevant.
    HenryNY said:


    Hmm, whom did you disagree with? Me?!?!

    And what did you disagree with? Did you disagree with what I wrote, or just something that you imagined? Where did I write that SCS makes BG2 easier or harder or neither easier nor harder?

    I guess you didn't read/understand my post before setting up a target to disagree with. You assumed the target was me. How unfortunate I am! I was merely talking about (and comparing) SCS & vanilla BG2EE beholders in (only) one context of how hard to face & survive their attacks.

    I made my effort to prove my point by giving a list of proofs. Are they NOT valid proofs?

    I hope you didn't disagree merely for the sake of disagreeing. If you really want to disagree, I hope you would point out how my proofs failed to prove my point. Please don't try to prove me wrong, if you only disagree with someone else. Again please note: my point has absolutely nothing to do with why people use SCS or how hard/easy SCS is vs vanilla game. I was merely talking about beholders! And only in one specific context!

    Yes I disagreed with you obviously. I disagreed with your statement that SCS beholders are not harder or possibly easier than the vanilla game. If you are using the tactics beholder option and they can steal the cloak of mirroring and the shield of baldren then it is harder on SCS. Your point about spell use is valid but SCS is more reasonable in my opinion. Overall they are certainly not easier to kill than in the vanilla game.

    I gave the advice I had to give, if it doesn't satisfy OP despite the fact that I know it works on all difficulties modded or not. That is fine by me. If you choose to make a list of options for OP to use I won't continue to criticize it. Your opinion is as valid as mine. I simply felt that you were being hypocritical so I pointed out why. If you don't agree that is fine. I actually don't have an argument to win here. I simply criticized your post because I thought it was hypocritical. At least I took the time to explain why. I don't think I seriously need to hold your hand through this. I'm pretty sure you get why I said what I did and why. Either way I don't wish to continue to go off on the wrong foot. If you are a fan of BG then you have good taste in games and I will try to be less critical of you in the future. I'm for sure not going to criticize you further in this thread as I'm pretty sure it would be considered a personal attack and I don't want to be punished for harassing other customers.

    Post edited by the_sextein on
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,513
    JoenSo said:

    This is why I don't like the kill-for-xp-system. Just to see a beholder and live to tell the tale should give you quite an amount of xp! But as it is, the game isn't designed to reward innovative ways to avoid or flee from things.

    Well, a good DM in PnP, and a good computer game, would give you XP for succeeding in an encounter regardless of whether you killed things to succeed.

    Unfortunately we don't have those things, we only have BG2. :(

    That's why I made my "No Murder XP" mod: it reduces the XP for kills, so you rely on Quest XP instead.

  • HenryNYHenryNY Member Posts: 42
    edited May 17
    To answer the OP question completely, one has to point out not just how to avoid, but also how to face and survive, beholder attacks. There is absolutely no need to debate on that. If you don’t know a complete answer, either offer a partial answer or just leave it to others.

    Personally, I am much more interested in having a list of options about how to face & survive beholder attacks.

    Having a complete answer, or one as complete as possible, is valuable knowledge. Worth spending time to find out.
    (something like accusing someone “hypocritical” is really nothing but an effort to hijack this legit thread. Very rude.)



    Re SCS beholders vs unmodded beholders
    ———————————————————-

    If you want to compare them, please do so on the same difficulty level.

    Compare SCS beholders on LOB with unmodded beholders on LOB only. Or compare them on the Core Rule difficulty only. And so on. SCS beholders on LOB are absolutely harder than unmodded beholders on Normal difficulty, but that’s not because of SCS at all.

    It is officially stated that SCS doesn’t use difficulty slider. Meaning: SCS remains same, regardless of player’s difficulty settings. In the case of beholders, as I already wrote, SCS beholders are meant to be different, smarter, but not harder. Actually, in this case, SCS makes the game somewhat easier.

    Please be aware: entire SOA, including all its elder orbs, were meant to be defeated by characters with no more than 3m XP. And no items like Shield of Balduran existed in original SOA. All SOA monsters in original game were designed to be killed without access to L9/10 spells or HLAs or uber gear. And the EE of SOA is roughly the same as original. Beholders were and still are very overpowered in vanilla game. Shield of Balduran was initially just one of the premium items for players who wanted to pay for them. This shield offers an advantage to players but it’s just an optional item.

    SCS changed all that, giving both beholders and player characters more options to fight fair and square. In SCS, the disadvantages on player side as compared to the unfair advantages of beholders are mitigated to a certain extent, though they remain very powerful just as they should be.

    Of course, because beholders are different in SCS, players have to adapt their tactics accordingly. Requiring different tactics doesn’t necessarily make anything harder or easier, though.

    Also note: adapting tactics because you have increased or decreased the game difficulty is not the same as adapting tactics because you have installed mods that change the game itself .

    Post edited by HenryNY on
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,513
    edited May 17
    HenryNY said:

    ToRe SCS beholders vs unmodded beholders
    —————————————————

    SCS beholders are meant to be different, smarter, but not harder. Actually, in this case, SCS makes the game somewhat easier.

    In a huge wall of text you never get around to explaining this assertion. SCS beholders are easier?

    EDIT - to expand on that: don't you think a smart enemy using varied and intelligent tactics to kill you woukd be harder to overcome than a dumb robot who only ever does the same thing over and over?

    Post edited by subtledoctor on
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 7,033
    How is avoiding deadly attacks not surviving them?

  • Dev6Dev6 Member Posts: 660
    ThacoBell said:

    How is avoiding deadly attacks not surviving them?

    Semantics but dodging a bullet isn't the same as surviving a gunshot wound.

  • Jaheiras_WitnessJaheiras_Witness Member Posts: 443
    Cannot be asked wading through all this rules-lawyering, but saying SCS beholders are easier than vanilla beholders is total horsepoo. And as for Elder Orbs, even if they don’t imprison PC with SCS, the improvement to their AI and spell choices makes them way tougher.

    Sounds like someone trying to be original for the sake of it and ignoring the fact they are just wrong.

  • StummvonBordwehrStummvonBordwehr Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 404
    Great thread, and many insightfull nuggets. Please keep it up

    The thread would be even better, if less time was spent pointing out perceived flaws in other posters argumentation, and more time was spent posting what works for you - we play the game differently, so maybe more the one tactic works?

    Personally I just hit the damn buggers with the flail of ages... it sort of works

This discussion has been closed.