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Shaman as my only divine caster: great idea, or the greatest idea?

It’s been a while since I’ve played Icewind Dale (last time I did was before the 2.0 update), and have been getting that itch to get stuck in again. So, I’ve been contemplating what party I’ll be throwing together to brave the frozen North once more.

Now, I remember from my last play through that Druids have some very fun spells in IWD that they don’t get in the Baldur’s Gate Games. Spontaneously casting Wall of Moonlight or Unicorn Horn sounds good, so a Shaman sounds like a good time (likely a half-orc who prefers swinging an axe to dancing).

My main question is, would I be okay with just a shaman + potions as far as keeping my party from not dying? Or is a cleric absolutely essential to getting through IWD in one piece?

Comments

  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,072
    edited March 31
    Cleric gets Turn Undead, what is a great thing to have in IWD to reduce the pressure against your front-liners.

    I would never make an IWD run without a Cleric.

    GusindamashedtatersBelgarathMTH
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 10,561
    Heh. I almost never use Turn Undead even when I have a cleric. I've said it before but IWD is a great playground for theme parties. Make a Treehuggers party, all rangers and druids. Make a God party, everyone has to be at least half cleric. Or one where everyone must be at least half wizard. Or at least half rogue. Etc.

    The only times I found it to be too much trouble to finish were my party of six single-class thieves, and of six single-class mages.

    Raduzielbob_veng
  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,072
    edited April 1
    I've said it before but IWD is a great playground for theme parties.

    I totally agree with that.

    I already made a totally barbarian-ish party, elvish party, a full Ilmaterite party, an I Hate Undead party, some (as subtledoctor called) God party where everyone was something-cleric using Deities of Faerûn, and I'm planning a dwarven party.

    It increases the flavor and uniqueness of IWD a lot.

    Post edited by Raduziel on
    subtledoctorGusinda
  • mashedtatersmashedtaters Member Posts: 1,848
    Give it a shot. You might find it increases the challenge, but there are a lot of potions generated in the game, so why not?

    If you don’t like it, just kick him out for a new one or dual one of your fighters to a cleric (this requires some planning).

  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,002
    For healing in IWD, don't overlook Bards.

    mashedtatersQuartz
  • ElysianEchoesElysianEchoes Member Posts: 199
    joluv wrote: »
    For healing in IWD, don't overlook Bards.

    wut?

    Beetle
  • mashedtatersmashedtaters Member Posts: 1,848
    joluv wrote: »
    For healing in IWD, don't overlook Bards.

    wut?

    Beards have cure spells on their spell list. Also, certain bard songs heal.

  • DJKajuruDJKajuru Member Posts: 2,926
    joluv wrote: »
    For healing in IWD, don't overlook Bards.

    wut?

    Beards have cure spells on their spell list. Also, certain bard songs heal.

    I think you have mixed it up with IWD2 , where bards can cast healing spells. The song that heals is the war chant of Sith (which is available at both games,indeed) , but a 6 person party isn't likely to obtain it before chapter 5.

    ElysianEchoes
  • Tad_Has_A_Cold_OliveTad_Has_A_Cold_Olive Member Posts: 179
    So, the point of my original post is going to be moot now, since I’m thinking that another character will be a halfling cleric of Tempus (because the Tempus kit lets halfling be a decent frontliner if they need to be and because it’s funny), but I’m still curious about people’s thoughts if having a Shaman in the party and nothing else is a viable strategy in IWDEE.

    Gusinda
  • AerichAerich Member Posts: 103
    I really wouldn't want to. One thing to consider is difficulty level. I consider the classes that gain spells on level up (divine, sorceror, shaman) to have a significant advantage over scroll-dependent arcane casters, so if playing on anything above Hard, I wouldn't advise it. I think you'll end up with your shaman being pulled in too many directions - e.g. healing vs. offensive spells. I think if you want to hammer out the offensive spells, you ought to carry a healer as well to free up the shaman.

    That said, parties without healing can make it through if you are willing to rest often and suspend disbelief at how long it takes in game time.

  • JGPJGP Member Posts: 17
    Clerics come in a bottle. Of course you can play through the game without one and I often do. In fact I consider it the least essential of the basic classes.

    My advice is to play the party that you want without worrying about all the powergamey consequences of your choices. If you play through the game and find that you wish you could be doing other things with your shaman, then play the game again and make some adjustments on party makeup. It's exactly the kind of thing that let's you keep on playing a game like this 20 years after it's release.
    Aerich wrote: »
    That said, parties without healing can make it through if you are willing to rest often and suspend disbelief at how long it takes in game time.

    I'm sorry, but I really must point out that this statement is quite untrue. Parties without magic don't even have to rest and mine never do outside of an inn or the designated safe spots later in the game. Resting even once in a dungeon to regain spells is the thing that breaks suspension for me.

  • AerichAerich Member Posts: 103
    JGP wrote: »
    Aerich wrote: »
    That said, parties without healing can make it through if you are willing to rest often and suspend disbelief at how long it takes in game time.

    I'm sorry, but I really must point out that this statement is quite untrue. Parties without magic don't even have to rest and mine never do outside of an inn or the designated safe spots later in the game. Resting even once in a dungeon to regain spells is the thing that breaks suspension for me.

    I completely agree that just playing the party is the way to go.

    As for the quoted part, I was trying to suggest that resting takes the place of healing, and without much healing, you'll be resting for long periods of time to regain health. If OP is playing on Core, I agree that resting for spells AND healing will be less. I haven't played on Core since the original (pre-HoW) release, and 90% of my parties are lvl 1 HoF parties, so my days of taking out multiple levels of DE in one waking period are over.

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