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Rate my party!

Hey all. I'm planning on playing through this game for the first time. I never played vanilla IWD. I did a little bit of research, and this what I came up with (along with the weapon I'm going for, for each member)

Let me know what you think.

Human Undead Hunter Paladin - Long Swords (Dual Wield)

Dwarf Dwarven Defender - Axes (Dual Wield)

Half-Elf Ranger/Cleric - Flails (Dual Wield)

Elf Fighter/Mage/Thief - Spears and Composite Long Bows

Half-Elf Bard - Long Bows

Elf Sorcerer - Slings

SkatanOlvynChuru

Comments

  • SkatanSkatan Member, Moderator Posts: 3,844
    Tanks - Check!
    Thief - Check!
    Main Arcane - Check!
    Support Arcane - Check and check! (two even)
    Divine buffer - Check!
    Epic, cool, amazing Bard - Check!
    Good distribution of weapon proficiences to avoid too much overlap- Check!
    Good potential for AC and damage output - Check!

    Looks solid, mate. My only comment would be to consider adding some versatility to allow some crushing damage perhaps on one of your tanks, potentially the DD. This could potentially delay your dualweilding a little bit, but would enhance your versatility vs enemies with res vs slashing (swords and axes).

    Iamdorf
  • OlvynChuruOlvynChuru Member Posts: 1,846

    Human Undead Hunter Paladin - Long Swords (Dual Wield)

    Dwarf Dwarven Defender - Axes (Dual Wield)

    Half-Elf Ranger/Cleric - Flails (Dual Wield)

    Elf Fighter/Mage/Thief - Spears and Composite Long Bows

    Half-Elf Bard - Long Bows

    Elf Sorcerer - Slings
    That team looks VERY good (too good, if anything). You should be fine. You also made some good weapon choices: Long Swords, Axes, Flails, and Long Bows are weapon types with some of the most amazing weapons in the game. It's possible to get a flail +2 that gives you an extra attack per round as early as Chapter 2 if you're lucky. Though you might want to have your Fighter/Mage/Thief use a different kind of melee weapon, since spears can't be used to backstab.

    Iamdorf
  • jsavingjsaving Member Posts: 403
    It's a good party, for sure, though I'd recommend two tweaks.  First, there are a lot of enemies in IWD who resist slashing/piercing damage so you probably want to switch one of your two front-liners to a crushing weapon.  Second, long swords would be a more natural fit for your FMT than your paladin as they're probably the best backstab-enabled weapon type in the game.  

  • OlvynChuruOlvynChuru Member Posts: 1,846
    jsaving said:
    It's a good party, for sure, though I'd recommend two tweaks.  First, there are a lot of enemies in IWD who resist slashing/piercing damage so you probably want to switch one of your two front-liners to a crushing weapon.  Second, long swords would be a more natural fit for your FMT than your paladin as they're probably the best backstab-enabled weapon type in the game.  
      @dennythray 's party already has a front-liner with crushing weapons (the cleric/ranger). And long swords are good for a paladin in Icewind Dale 1, since the Holy Avenger in this game is a long sword. Perhaps both the Undead Hunter and the Fighter/Mage/Thief could wield long swords. Magical long swords are REALLY common in Icewind Dale 1: you automatically get two +2 long swords in Chapter 2 with a possibility of a third one in the same chapter, and there are multiple really good long swords late in the game.

  • jsavingjsaving Member Posts: 403
    The holy avenger is a great weapon, for sure, though you don't get it until fairly late in the game.  I'd at least select maces or war hammers as a second weapon for the paladin.

  • GundanRTOGundanRTO Member Posts: 11
    * You should be able to buy The Love of Black Bess (+3 Mace that gives opponents bad luck) early in the game (even before you hit the final crypt in the Vale) so definitely have Ranger/Cleric or Paladin get proficient in maces if they aren't already. I'd say that's a better starting proficiency for the R/C than Flails, personally.

    * I think there are enough good Longswords that the F/M/T could start using Long Swords. If you want a weapon with Reach, then Quarterstaff might be good instead of Spear for that character, since you can Backstab and since Summoner's Staff (+3) is available in Chapter 2 in IWD EE. IIRC, you should be able to Backstab with that, in addition to using it to summon Invisible Stalkers (!?).

    * That said, pretty solid party. Should do fine, I think.

  • AerichAerich Member Posts: 90
    I second the advice given. Your party looks strong. It's too bad you couldn't work a druid in there, but you can save that for a second run.

    Do bear in mind that if you are playing on core difficulty, your F/M/T will be extremely slow to level. In my view, optimal weapons for the F/M/T are longbow** and staff** to start, with longsword** and maybe dagger** to follow. I would not use it for melee until you have some mage levels - for mirror image especially - and decent AC, unless you're entering melee a round or two after it's begun and all monsters have targeted something else. After your thief gets some levels, you'll do more damage with sneak attack and a staff than with even one of the best magical spears. Don't put any points into pickpocket, your bard can handle all of it unless you're taking a skald instead of a vanilla bard - but vanilla bard is best for a first run. Best skill distribution is to prioritize open locks and find/remove traps first. Your ranger can do scouting if needed, or simply just use invisibility. Once you have OL and FRT over 80-90, then you can decide how much you want to use your F/M/T as a scout. Tactically, it makes better sense to me to lead slowly with one of your two excellent tanks with the F/M/T right behind to find traps and shoot spellcasters.

    I'd give your Undead Hunter a ranged weapon too; you've got bows covered, so sling would be good; slings go well with extreme strength, which a UH can get through Draw Upon Holy Might (+14 to damage for 25 Str !). Then, you've got something to do if you want to use your DD as the lead, or only, tank, from time to time. Don't be too quick with any character to go to dual wielding - shields can be really good too. Especially when getting into a situation where your lead tank is attacked by 6+ enemies at a time, that -3 or -4 to AC can be way more valuable than another 1-2 attacks per round. You can't do any damage if you're dead, so don't get so blinded by offensive melee potential that you struggle unnecessarily on defense.

    I don't bother shooting with a bard - as a friend on another board said long ago, "sing, foole, sing!" Tymora's Melody giving +1 luck and +3 saves is far better for your party than a couple arrows a round, and then when you get War Chant, WC's effect on the tanks (damage resistance, -2 AC and regeneration) and divine casters (less minor healing spells required, meaning more offence-oriented spells and buffs like Draw Upon Holy Might) is so profound that the bard's potential damage output from weapons is meaningless.

    Be careful with sorceror spell selection - you want to pick spells you will cast over and over again in combat, not just once in a while. A sorceror's earlier access to certain spells makes the game much easier than it used to be, pre-sorceror.

    SkatanIamdorf
  • dennythraydennythray Member Posts: 3
    Thanks everyone!

    It looks like I'll probably have enough proficiency points to give my Paladin and my Cleric/Ranger an additional weapon to spec in. Even though it's late game, I like having the Holy Avenger on my Paladin for flavor.

    What I think I'll do, is make it so my Paladin starts specced in maces and works her way toward long swords, while my F/M/T starts with long swords for backstab purposes.

    Skatan
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