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Dealing with mages without a mage

My current run is in the underdark and mages are starting to get annoying with their stoneskins/spell turning/traps/etc. and being drow with MR on top of it all. I spend a lot of time cross referencing the protection spells they've cast with the descriptions for the anti-protection spells I have. It's not fun. I actually usually quit a run at this point, it's so tedious.

Then, I realize, lots of people play non-mage solos or just without mages and have to deal with enemy mages. I'm trying to figure out a work around and could use some tips.

One partial solution I've come up with is to throw summons at mages while the rest of the party is outside the fog. It buys a few rounds or so for the mages to burn some spells and let some shorter protections lapse, but this doesn't fully address the issue.

Anyone have other tips? Thanks.


  • O_BruceO_Bruce Member Posts: 2,761
    Weapons and projectiles that offer additional elemental damage are useful, since elemental damage go through stoneskins in general, which also can interrpt the foe's spellcasting. Same for poison - arrows of bitting can be useful.

    Also remember that when enemies are casting "Protection from Magical Weapons" they still can be harmed by non-enchanted weapons.

  • KnellerKneller Member Posts: 416
    I think a problem combo (and pretty popular) is PFMW, protection from normal missiles, and stoneskin. throw a spell trap on that (or some other high level uber-protection bullshit) and it nerfs my mages, too. I do carry around an extra (normal) club for jah and a couple of (normal) morningstars for minsc, but with that protection combo, my tanks can't use their magical elemental weapons, my archer can't use the non-magical elemental arrows (fire/ice/acid/etc. arrows are not considered magical), and my mages can't cast a breach because of the spell trap. I pretty much have to let the mage have about 4 rounds of free spellcasting until PFMW wears off which might be how long it takes me to wear through the stoneskins bashing away with normal weapons and magical arrows. And that's just with a single mage, nevermind a handful of drow priestesses/wizards.

  • AurorusAurorus Member Posts: 194
    edited October 2018
    If you want to remove the PfMW, you must remove the spell defense(s) first. Secret Word, the 4th level spell, works on everything that does not include Spell Trap. For Spell Trap, you need Pierce Shield or Spellstrike. If the mage does not have SI:Abjuration, you can try a simple Dispel Magic or Remove Magic from your highest level caster. This will sometimes work if you have a high enough caster level and if you do not target the mage directly but cast it nearby him. If you target him directly, it will be absorbed by the Spell Trap.

    There is a magic sword that will often dispel magic on a hit, and Kheldorn or a Charname Inquisitor's Dispel Magic is very powerful and nearly certain to work: again, however, only if the mage does not have SI:Abjuration. Also, spells that do not target the mage directly, such as AoE spells will also sometimes have an effect, depending upon what specific spell defenses the mage has. For example, Insect Plague, the 5th-level Druid spell, if you target a nearby enemy, will often spread even to mages with some spell defenses. If you target the mage directly, however, it will be absorbed by the Spell Trap. Against Drow this method is much less reliable, however, because they have such high magic resistance. Their magic resistance will not affect Dispel Magic, however: either from a caster, the weapon, or an Inquisitor.

    You have discovered why Inquisitors are considered to be very good fighter-type characters.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 2,734
    edited October 2018
    firestorm ignores magic resistance and is an aoe spell, is a wonderful drow killer if you have a cleric that can cast it.

    pfmw is so short lasting that if your thief can scout and spot the drow party is not a problem to have them waste it while your party is in a safe position. the underdark battles against drows are a perfect playground for the thief, he can pop out from the fog of war, fire an arrow or 2 and then hide as the drow casters try to cast spells at him, he has to be hasted so he can run away if the spell cast is an aoe, in each case the spell is wasted. if some drow is so idiot to try to follow him he can backstab the pour guy, multiple times if needed. a corner, a rock or anything that hides him from the enemy sight for a split second is all he needs to disappear, and the enemy will reach the point where he hide and stay still there. traps can help. and shield of reflection is mandatory (EDIT: if the thief can equip it, a fmt or ft can) so the drows that use ranged weapons hit themselves.
    one other way is to make your mage not touchable and have the drows waste all their spells on him.

    i usually run small parties and efficient leveling strategies ( like soloing with charname until he gets enough xp that the npcs are at the highest level possible, maybe leaving the quest xp to be gathered so they can also benefit, so my mages can use dispel magic. to start with npcs at 1.25M and be only 3 or 4 toons mean that in the underdark they are at much higher level than the opponents, as they have more than the double xp than 6 people party that is not using efficient leveling strategies.
    but as i often give myself some limitations, like fighting the battles without using arcane magic or magic at all, i find that in most situations a thief can be a perfect mage neutralizer.

    summons work, skeletal warriors suck spells and hit well, mordy swords are perfect against the warriors. is crucial to have the summons draw the attention of the right enemies, SW for casters, MS for warriors. and if needed some low level summon to waste the death spells that destroy summons. but i am not a big fan of the summons, i use them very seldom. ranged capability is the key while you use the summons as meat shield, a ranged party can kill enemies fast if all the focus is on only one.

  • DanacmDanacm Member Posts: 667
    I really think that the pfmw is a bad designed spell along with spell immunity. Stoneskin should be enough for mages to defend themselves, and SI is abusive as much. I really like mods that alter or remove them

  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,466
    Do you have any druids? Not much can be done about Drow magic resistance, but an insect palgue will go through any spell protections. Unless you use mods that nerf it.

  • borntodieborntodie Member Posts: 126
    Yeah I believe you are playing the vanilla game? As Thaco bell said, insect plague interrupts spellcasting and hits right through mage protections. It is one of the best anti-mage weapons.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 2,734
    edited October 2018
    stoneskin protects against 10 attacks, and let elemental and other not physical damage pass trough.
    a mage protected only by stoneskin can be owned by a single fighter using a weapon with elemental damage as is constantly disrupted. is also easy to remove it with breach or a single arrow of dispelling.
    a mage with MMM active can own 2 enemy ones protected by stoneskin.
    there are ways to get rid of SI, RRoR is in the game for that purpose.
    PFMW is short lasting and breach get rid of it. also it can not be active while also protection from normal weapons is there.
    a game without PFMW and SI leave mages naked, unless the change is a change of the whole spell system.
    a mage protected only by PFMW and SI abjuration can be killed in seconds by a thief (backstab with staff of striking).
    i think that the mages are too easy to own even with SI and PFMW, the only mage i can think about that is hard to own is the undead solaufein from the wes weimer's mod, if we are talking of the vanilla spell system.

    we are lucky that the enemies don't have the robe of vecna and don't use their offensive potential, my mages can kill both draconis forms before the lizard has the time to react, they don't even need protections cause everything happens so fast.

    EDIT: i am not even talking of aoe spells or the druid insect ones that ignore PFMW, most of the ways i am talking about can be performed by not mages, and even the MMM is used by a mage but is a weapon, conjured by a spell, not a spell.

    Post edited by gorgonzola on
  • MyragMyrag Member Posts: 282
    edited October 2018
    There is few things you can do
    1. Wand of spell striking - from neera quest gives 5 breaches and 5 pierce magics, you then just sell it anc buy it back to recharge. A lot of those in watchers keep but that is late in the game.
    2. Dispel magic - divine casters have dispel magic as level 3 spell available, in non SCS environment this is very powerful stuff
    3. Inqusitors dispel magic (Keldorn) - this is probably the most OP antimage spell in the game, cast at double level means you cast level ~40 dispel magic in underdark which means 100% to dispell literally everything on all mages/casters/melee in the area, all potions, buffs, etc.
    4. Remove magic/Dispel magic - on bards is also very powerful
    5. Potion of magic resistance and magic blocking - 50% magic reistance allows you to stand there and just take every spell they have in the face
    6. Items to reduce damage - if you stock up on items which increase saving throws and reduce magic damage taken (belt of inertial barrier, cloak of mirroring) then you can just sit there on mage without getting a single point of damage
    7. Carsomyr - paladins or thiefs with Use Any Item HLA once you get through protection from magical weapons (4 round) then you oneshot mage from all his protection with this powerful level 30 dispel on hit
    8. Detect illusion - thief have detect magic which at 100 means 100% to dispel any illusion in thiefs range regardless of any power, no more need for true sight

  • borntodieborntodie Member Posts: 126
    Kneller, it would help a lot if you told us what your current party looks like, to narrow down the options to be more relevant. Keldorn and Carsomyr are arguably the strongest anti-magic tools, but IIRC he is not in your party?

  • KnellerKneller Member Posts: 416
    borntodie said:

    Kneller, it would help a lot if you told us what your current party looks like, to narrow down the options to be more relevant. Keldorn and Carsomyr are arguably the strongest anti-magic tools, but IIRC he is not in your party?

    I have Jah, Minsc, Imoen, and a cleric/mage.

  • AurorusAurorus Member Posts: 194
    edited October 2018
    You have several of the options I listed: Insect Plague from Jaheira on nearby enemy and hope it spreads to mage, Pierce Magic or Secret Word from Imoen, followed by Breach from Cleric/Mage, Dispel Magic, and Remove Magic. There are two other options, which I failed to mention, and that is to have Jaheira summon animals or bears. Their weapons are considered non-magical, and the bears may actually be able to hit the drow mages, though certainly not reliably. Most summoned monsters also have non-magical weapons, but they will almost certainly only hit on a 20 and some are equipped with missile weapons which will not help you. Jaheira's simple 2nd-level spell, flame blade, is also considered a non-magical weapon, and it does fire damage that will penetrate the stoneskins and disrupt casting. She will have 3/2 or 2 attacks per round with this weapon, depending upon her fighter level. If you buff her THACO and improved haste her, it will be enough to reliably disrupt casting by one mage. Also, when you do not have more flame-blades, Jaheira can shapeshift and also gain non-magical attacks (though at a very severe penalty to armor-class, be sure to have ironskins). I remember now why I loved Jaheira so much in Vanilla.

    Post edited by Aurorus on
  • AerakarAerakar Member Posts: 658
    edited October 2018
    I believe poisoned throwing daggers may not be blocked by PFNM or PFMW so sort of a cheap workaround. If you have someone with dagger proficiency try those together with Firetooth.

  • OlvynChuruOlvynChuru Member Posts: 2,282
    My favorite way to deal with BG2 mages is to throw lots and lots of summoned creatures at them. Even if the summoned creatures are really weak (e.g. Monster Summoning 1 creatures), the mages will still waste spells on them. Even in a party without spellcasters, BG2 still gives you quite a few items that let you summon meatshields (figurines, efreeti bottle, Ras, golem manual, and others).

    It doesn't even matter if the mage has Death Spell, because they can only cast Death Spell a limited number of times (usually once). Just throw a kobold at them, they use their Death Spell, and then you throw all your other summons at the mage.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 2,734
    as there are a couple of arcane casters in the party also stacking webs can work well, the spell that jaheira can cast does not block completely the enemies but helps in keeping them into the aoe of the webs.
    a toon webbed not only can not move, but gets hit every time bypassing the to hit roll and can not cast or use ranged weapons. spiders are immune to web and the ones you can make spawn at some levels have a poisoning effect that is really good against casters.
    2 webs can be stored in a minor sequencer so with 2 mages 4 webs can be active in no time, if sequencer is used 6 webs can be active, but this is more spell consuming.

    about having jaheira shapeshifting i prefer to give her a couple of mundane clubs, if she has pips in dw, she can also use the sling that brings STR damage in while using not enchanted bullets, and the shield of reflection make her immune to the ranged attacks the drows use, the drow speed Xbow and the secial bullets can be annoying.

  • ReliantReliant Member Posts: 30

    An Inquisitor is a mage's worst nightmare with his/her dispel magic ability.

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