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Exploring something new (an attempt to do an evil playthrough)

JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 20,495
It's not easy to find something new in these games when you have hundreds of hours in. But I plan to come back to BG, as "the realms call, and you go."

So, I've had an idea. What if I attempt to put more PRing into the run, and RPing as an evil character. Inspired by good runs by @BelgarathMTH, @Arvia , and others, I've decided to create an unusual for me group of characters, and will try to make decisions according to their ethics.

The main character will be a necromancer who can only scribe necromancy spells. All other spells can be cast from scrolls only. For the first level, she went with Larloch's Minor Drain and Chill Touch.

The group which will support the necromancer (neutral evil) consists of:
- a blackguard (chaotic evil)
- a cleric of Talos (chaotic evil)
- an assassin with points into Set Traps (neutral evil)
- a sorcerer (lawful evil) whose spell picks are spells which can be looked at as "evil". I'm not sure about exact spell choices, but Blindness, Spook, Chromatic Orb descriptions suit the evil ethics. In the same way, clerics' Command literally makes enemies "die" (sleep)
- the final party spot will belong to NPCs so that I could complete quests

I won't use "good" cleric spells, such as Cure Wounds. So healing is only possible via potions and spells like Larloch's Minor Drain (thanks to @Tresset's quick fix from here). But I think I can use spells like Protection from Fear - evil characters shouldn't be affected by Fear (as the blackguard kit ability confirms).

If you have further ideas about how to pursue evil ethics in terms of spells, I'd be happy to listen.

Meet Mara, Czernobog, Eruína, Grim, and Nav'. All stats are taken "as is" - no adjusting, which helps create realistic stats. As a consequence, my blackguard will need Dex bracers, and my sorc has the second highest STR in the group.
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With 50 points in Set Traps, Grim managed to set a trap next to Fuller. Mara saw the room was full of chests with potentially important weapons and Fuller carried a nice armour himself. A backstab from Grim failed, but Command worked, while Spook affected the Watcher nearby. Mara's Chill Touch finished the Watcher (because he was shredded to ice pieces all the items were lost), while Fuller didn't recover from his sleep.
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I already can feel the difference - this is the first time ever I used Chill Touch! And the party reputation is 3.

Blindness helped against lone but hard-hitting animals.
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Tarnesh failed his saving throw against Command, with Poison Weapon already activated by both Czernobog and Grim, and Spook flying his way.
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No help for Joia. Turns out she says "I'll find help elsewhere" and just leaves, letting you loot her chests.
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Marl hit hard in melee, so Eruína frightened him with Spook.
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Party level: 1
Party reputation: 3
Reloads: 0
Mods: SCS (full), IWD voice sets: they are awesome, and provide a lot of lines suitable for evil characters. "The silent blade cuts best!"

StummvonBordwehrOrlonKronsteenBelgarathMTHArviaLudwig_IIZaghoulGrond0PsicoVicAerakarCrevsDaakBorcololienBlackraven
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Comments

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,536
    This sounds interesting and fun to read. Maybe it will bring a renewed flow of traffic to this sub-forum.

    Do you plan to continue if you have a reload? I'm guessing maybe so, since you didn't put this in the no-reload thread.

    JuliusBorisovCrevsDaaklolien
  • Ludwig_IILudwig_II Member Posts: 285
    In my opinion, what's even harder than roleplaying evil is stopping the urge to min max stats after rolling. I have never managed to accomplish that myself.

    Looks like your playthrough will be challenging and fun. I'll follow with interest too. And I definitely agree with you on IWD soundsets, they are amazing.

    StummvonBordwehrJuliusBorisovCrevsDaak
  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 763
    Ludwig_II wrote: »
    In my opinion, what's even harder than roleplaying evil is stopping the urge to min max stats after rolling. I have never managed to accomplish that myself.

    I also find it hard to stop myself from rushing through a lot of the dialogue options and quests, because I've done them so many times. I try to immerse myself in the world and the story, but sometimes autopilot takes over and I end up rapid firing through the game, which breaks the RP immersion. One of the leading causes of restartitis, I think.

    StummvonBordwehrJuliusBorisov
  • Mantis37Mantis37 Member Posts: 1,072
    Pursuing an evil path will be very challenging, I want to focus on that mainly. I actually think it might be more difficult than just surviving in a no-reload playthrough. So if I need reloads, for example, to replay something to better embody this incentive, I will do them. I also want to "feel hooked" again, so stopping and starting anew because of the main character's death doesn't seem a correct choice.

    I certainly hope this vibe of sharing playthroughs will bring in more players.

    As a necromancer I quite enjoy devouring fellow party members' souls if I want a reload, so that's one way to justify it if that helps!

    JuliusBorisovCrevsDaaklolien
  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 20,495
    edited May 2019
    Great support, keep these ideas coming. The challenge for me right now is figuring it out.

    What about another aspect: evil and good clerics in IWD have completely different spells to choose, and there are also neutral spells available to all alignments. See here - https://forums.beamdog.com/discussion/comment/834356/#Comment_834356

    Post edited by JuliusBorisov on
    lolien
  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 763
    IWD clerics: I don't play IWD, but I think it's safe to assume that the same applies. You could use any spells provided they were for self preservation or to further your goals - or the goals of your deity. So I suspect an evil deity would be fine with you using benevolent spells in the right circumstances. There is probably a bit of a scale of acceptability depending on the deity. My Forgotten Realms lore is really weak, but hypothetically a really vile and chaotically evil deity would likely be less tolerant of one of their clerics using benevolent spells than a more neutral or calculatingly evil deity.

    There is also the type of evil you're playing, to consider. Again there's a scale from demon-worshiping, bloodthirsty psychopath to milder incarnations (like a greedy politician who wouldn't kill people, but is willing to use bribes, etc.). The D&D alignment system doesn't really help IMO, as it's not really based on any scientific understanding of psychology, and is incredibly limited in it's ability to profile people in real life. For what it's worth, I pretty much ignore it. My paladins, for instance, while generally good, have darker sides to them. Theirs is a vengeful brand of justice, and they're not afraid of breaking rules for the greater good. This isn't in accordance with the description of Lawful Good in the Player's Handbook, but I think it makes for more 'realistic' and interesting play (not to mention justifying Jan Jansen's shoplifting sprees when your pc is a pally). ;)

    I think the most important question to ask is this: who is your character? This is probably best answered during character creation. When you know their background, personality, and goals, it's easier to make decisions that are consistent from a RP standpoint. If they're a vile, demon-serving crew they'll be much less likely to behave in a benevolent manner, and will generally sow chaos and misery. If they're only mildly self-serving, they'll be more likely to do good things on occasion, and be more sympathetic to their comrades. If they're clerics, they'll presumably follow less evil deities, too.

    JuliusBorisovBelgarathMTHlolien
  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 763
    I hope your run is still going! But if you're like me you abandoned your current play through(s) to upgrade SCS. :)

    JuliusBorisovlolien
  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 1,103
    Still hoping to read more of Mara and her team in the future! Although I would immediately try to Smite your party if I met them, of course! 🙂

    JuliusBorisovBelgarathMTHlolien
  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 1,103
    I like your explanations why and how you make your decisions, especially because you're roleplaying something against your nature and must therefore always think about the options. It must be quite challenging!

    Unfortunately, the dialogue options sometimes leave little choice. They weren't all written with roleplaying options in mind. In my paladin run I have a similar problem. If the wording doesn't fit at all, I'm not going to accept some quests. And sometimes you only get two dialogue choices, and both of them are kind of silly and force you to choose something you wuld never say.

    JuliusBorisovBelgarathMTHAerakarCrevsDaak
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