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Would you like to reintroduce the XP cap in Shadows of Amn before starting Throne of Bhaal?

_Connacht__Connacht_ Member Posts: 136
In Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, the XP cap was originally set to 2 950 000 XP and players who completed every quest usually reached that point right before the final battle.

When Throne of Bhaal was released, a new cap of 8 000 000 XP was introduced, in order to improve characters to epic levels, summon planetars, get high level abilities, face new powerful enemies and wear bronze pantalettes. However, this increased cap was already effective while playing Shadows of Amn, meaning that if you played only the original content you could reach Irenicus while having more than 3 000 000 XP for Charname, possibly unlocking HLAs for the final battle.
This was probably due to the fact that players could also optionally reach the Watcher's Keep in the base game if they wanted, getting an additional huge amount of experience that otherwise would have been wasted (but in turn, along with the new items, it completely unbalanced the whole game as it was available since chapter 2, even reaching trivial outcomes when a cleric or paladin could farm Bodhi's lair in 5 minutes by simply activating turn undead).

This is in contrast with how, for example, Siege of Dragonspear manages the new XP cap: the previous one is still in action while you play the base game, but it raises once you get to the expansion with new content and new areas.

So, would you like to reintroduce the original XP cap in Shadows of Amn, and only get the higher cap when in fact you start Throne of Bhaal (a solution similar to Siege of Dragonspear)? Or are you satisfied with the current situation? Alternatively, would you even like, instead, a slightly higher cap in SoA, i.e. 3 000 000 or 3 500 000 XP, before starting ToB?

Would you like to reintroduce the XP cap in Shadows of Amn before starting Throne of Bhaal? 25 votes

Yes, limit it to 2950000 XP as it was in the original SoA, only raise to 8000000 when you start ToB
4% 1 vote
No, leave the 8000000 XP limit introduced with ToB and get HLAs earlier
84% 21 votes
Have a slightly higher XP limit than 2950000 in SoA but not too much
12% 3 votes

Comments

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 2,728
    edited September 11
    i am fine with 8M.
    maybe just because the first time i reached the needed xp and was expecting to finally be able to cast those very high level spells and i did hit the cap, without knowing its existence, i found the thing so annoying.

    also i find caps quite artificial and not natural in general, even the 8M xp one.
    if you run a small party you gain level faster, but you have less firepower (party apr) compared to a full party, so imho there is anyway a balance.

    also with the mods i usually play with and for some runs the soa late game would become incredibly hard.
    to beat tactics mod improved irenicus in hell without hla and lev 9 spells for a solo mage or sorcerer would be borderline to impossible.
    and to have him struggle so much in that last soa battle and then at the beginning of tob becoming 10x his previous power would break my immersion.
    i feel more problems, having a very high level solo charname, in tob. and often i quit playing him because he can easily win almost every battle, taking down foe like draconis in few rounds without even getting scratched.

    i find that mods that lower the rate the party gets XP are a much better solution then capping xp for those runs where the power ramp is too steep, the player can tune quite well the balance between the party and the enemies, given his party composition and more or less completionist style, without those artificial steps like the transition from soa to tob in a sod like mode or without completely loosing legittimate xp like with a simple cap.

    but in the end the introduction of a cap would not cause me any problem, as i would use a cap remover mod and if needed a mod to reduce the xp.
    while who like the cap introduction has no mean to do it in the game like it is now.
    but maybe a mod for it can be created by some modder if enough players vote for the cap introduction.

    leeux
  • masteralephmasteraleph Member Posts: 53
    The caps are annoying because there's a dual rewards system: better and more interesting PCs and working through the storyline. The caps cut off the former.

    8 million was never a problem, at least if you're playing with a 6 member party- parties in vanilla TOB could never really reach the cap. Even with SoD, I think you still need some mods to provide enough XP to reach 8 million in a 6 member party. But you absolutely could hit 2.95 million xp in SoA, and it made the last parts of the game feel a little more unfulfilling.

    gorgonzolailduderinoThacoBellleeux
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 2,728
    8 million was never a problem, at least if you're playing with a 6 member party- parties in vanilla TOB could never really reach the cap. Even with SoD, I think you still need some mods to provide enough XP to reach 8 million in a 6 member party.
    actually i reached the 8M xp cap once in SoA + WK, without any trick like talking multiple times to the blocked tanner to get multiple quest rewards, only completely legittimate quest and kills xp ;) :D .

    it was done as an experiment fighting for RL hours the WK boss, having great care to not damage him and killing the ever spawning helpers, was hard (as i did chose to not force savegames fake exiting the area) and a single error could be the end of hours of battle, and fun.

    but yep, in a normal way it is impossible with a full party that does not use my special power leveling strategy and is not really needed, if not for few really difficult solos in a modded tob, a late tob full party has already enough power to deal with anything now, as well as many little ones or solo runs.


    ilduderino
  • DaevelonDaevelon Member Posts: 541
    Leave 8000000, and i add: put 500000 limit from SoD in BG too.
    I always use a cap remover for it, i can't stand reaching the cap in the first quarter of my run.

    ilduderinogorgonzolaStummvonBordwehr
  • ilduderinoilduderino Member Posts: 246
    I think leave it as it is. If it bothers people a lot they can ignore the HLAs. On a recent playthough I rushed Watchers Keep and got an HLA on Yoshimo which was fun

    gorgonzola
  • jsavingjsaving Member Posts: 589
    HLAs make Firkraag and other SoA boss fights far easier than was intended so I can see the argument for restoring the old 2.95m XP cap. However doing this would severely disadvantage people who go through Watcher's Keep in SoA rather than ToB because they'd stop accumulating XP for the last fifth of SoA. I'd only support reinstating the 2.95m cap if access to Watcher's Keep were disabled until ToB.

  • KhyronKhyron Member Posts: 412
    ... i think the xp cap should be rasied to... infinity.

    gorgonzolaRik_Kirtaniyaleeux
  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 263
    Reaching the ToB cap with a full party? My one full-party completist run (without SoD) so far pretty much got there. Three characters were at the cap, one was about 200K away from it, and the last two were about 300K away. No XP loops or excessive use of infinite spawners were involved.
    A completist run of SoA without Watcher's Keep can get a full party to around 4 million XP, or more if you abuse scribing XP and then recruit a party to take advantage of the catch-up XP mechanic. The 2.95 million cap would reliably cut off experience to more than just the last fifth of SoA. If you want to go that way, you're better off leaving the cap as it is and just not hitting the levelup button once a character reaches 3 million total XP.

    gorgonzolalolien
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 2,728
    jmerry wrote: »
    If you want to go that way, you're better off leaving the cap as it is and just not hitting the levelup button once a character reaches 3 million total XP.
    a so simple solution, but i see some genius in it...

    lolien
  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 4,563
    jmerry wrote: »
    Reaching the ToB cap with a full party? My one full-party completist run (without SoD) so far pretty much got there. Three characters were at the cap, one was about 200K away from it, and the last two were about 300K away. No XP loops or excessive use of infinite spawners were involved.
    A completist run of SoA without Watcher's Keep can get a full party to around 4 million XP, or more if you abuse scribing XP and then recruit a party to take advantage of the catch-up XP mechanic. The 2.95 million cap would reliably cut off experience to more than just the last fifth of SoA. If you want to go that way, you're better off leaving the cap as it is and just not hitting the levelup button once a character reaches 3 million total XP.

    are you running mods? or are you playing the vanillas where you gain a +10% bonus from everything expect quest XP?

    because for me i always start SoA with 161 000 xp per character, and i scribe every scroll i find ( dont use any xp exploits ) and i even finish off all the cowled wizards and kill off perhaps 100 or so amnish guards, and do EVERY quest ( except for perhaps joinable team mate quests ) and at best i hit around..... 3.7 milllion or so xp per character in SoA ( without watcher's keep ) and when it comes time to ToB my absolute best without excessive grinding was somehow 7.2 million xp per character ( usually im lucky to even hit 7 million per character ) - and this is just before chapter 10 starts in ToB

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 18,705
    Previously, I was not against reaching HLAs in SoA. But lately, I've come to a conclusion HLAs break the late stages of the Underdark and subsequent content of SoA. So I try not to level up my characters (who are about to get HLAs) till ToB.

    gorgonzola
  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 263
    edited September 14
    That was an entirely vanilla (EE) run I reported. No bonus experience, as far as I'm aware. I did run all of the EE character quests, and many of the quests for characters that weren't permanent party members. Most of the scribing XP went to shortcutting my character's dual class, split between them and the party's arcane casters (one at a time).
    Also, that was the Final Save totals I reported - the very end of the game.
    [Edit note: that run did have extra monsters by virtue of being on Insane difficulty. No extra XP for each monster, but more of them in a number of places.]

    I'm running mods now, but no big quest mods - just the little Unfinished Business quests and some extra monsters from SCS. The current run is at about 2.3 million average XP in the party - and they haven't even gone to Spellhold yet, or visited several of the major chapter 2 quest areas. If I finished off those quests, I'd be on the brink of HLAs entering Spellhold, which is just ridiculous.
    The key to that? Don't recruit the party right away. Instead, shoplift the scrolls and scribe your way to a million XP on the protagonist. Then, recruit the party and start playing normally - they all get catch-up experience, which means they start at a million too.

    Post edited by jmerry on
    gorgonzola
  • Permidion_StarkPermidion_Stark Member Posts: 4,207
    I always play with an XP cap remover so to be honest it doesn't really matter what the limit is set at because I am going to remove it anyway.

    Daevelondunbargorgonzola
  • Mantis37Mantis37 Member Posts: 968
    I've played no-reloads with the options (from Tweaks, SCS) to delay HLAs and not access Watcher's Keep till after SoA. They worked fine and were pretty fun.

    JuliusBorisovleeux
  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 4,563
    Previously, I was not against reaching HLAs in SoA. But lately, I've come to a conclusion HLAs break the late stages of the Underdark and subsequent content of SoA. So I try not to level up my characters (who are about to get HLAs) till ToB.

    even if my characters have HLA in SoA i just dont use them, except for UAI for thieves just out of convenience ( and that is usually just for weapons )

    thankfully as well, if you are truly a stickler for not going pass the 3 million xp mark, you dont have to worry about losing HLA slots upon multiple level ups because you can now choose multiple abilities at a time if need be

    gorgonzola
  • DJKajuruDJKajuru Member Posts: 3,066
    I use a mod that limits xp quests so my characters (in a party of five) end SoA at about 2 million xp. I love it because it makes chapter 2 dungeons more relevant and we usually end ToB at about 3.7 million xp each.

    Daevelongorgonzola
  • StummvonBordwehrStummvonBordwehr Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 675
    I actually made a Redmine feature request for an optional xp cap. Like below

    For BG1:
    89 k, 161 k or 500 k

    For SoD:
    161 k, 500 k or 2.900 k (old BG2 cap?)

    For BG2:
    2.900 k, 8.000 k or no cap

    ToB:
    2.900 k, 8.000 k or no cap

    The idea wasn’t implemented (off course), but I am still hoping...

    Personally I like to disable the XP cap when ever I can. I am playing on iOS, so an in game toggle function would be nice - it would save me the trouble of re modding the game when new updates arrive... B).

    Daevelon
  • DaevelonDaevelon Member Posts: 541
    I actually made a Redmine feature request for an optional xp cap. Like below

    For BG1:
    89 k, 161 k or 500 k

    For SoD:
    161 k, 500 k or 2.900 k (old BG2 cap?)

    For BG2:
    2.900 k, 8.000 k or no cap

    ToB:
    2.900 k, 8.000 k or no cap

    The idea wasn’t implemented (off course), but I am still hoping...

    Personally I like to disable the XP cap when ever I can. I am playing on iOS, so an in game toggle function would be nice - it would save me the trouble of re modding the game when new updates arrive... B).
    Love this. The only little issue it's changing the HLA board for triple-classed character, in order to give them the possibility to get the Wizard HLAs in case you choose no cap.

    StummvonBordwehrgorgonzola
  • Francois42424Francois42424 Member Posts: 37
    Personally, I always remove the level cap when playing BG1/BG2.
    It does not make that much of a difference when playing a party of six, but sometimes I like doing solo/duo/trio runs wither alone or with RL friends. And the XP cap is annoying.

    So I voted to leave it at 8mil.

    Daevelon
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