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Just a quick question: Is Legacy Bhaal balanced for a level 1 character at the start?

dp85dp85 Member Posts: 7
Or is it like HoF where you're supposed to be higher level? Also is there any value playing it over the SCS mod? I recently finished IWD2 and IWDEE for the first time (after owning the original games on disc for near 20 years). Played both with max HP and on the highest (non-HOF) difficulties and really enjoyed them so kind of wanted to do a replay of the BG games.

Comments

  • OlvynChuruOlvynChuru Member Posts: 2,348
    edited October 24
    dp85 wrote: »
    Or is it like HoF where you're supposed to be higher level? Also is there any value playing it over the SCS mod? I recently finished IWD2 and IWDEE for the first time (after owning the original games on disc for near 20 years). Played both with max HP and on the highest (non-HOF) difficulties and really enjoyed them so kind of wanted to do a replay of the BG games.

    Legacy of Bhaal is not balanced for a level 1 character. It's possible to beat Legacy of Bhaal starting at level 1, but only if one REALLY knows what one is doing. I recommend enabling the option to have enemies in Legacy of Bhaal mode give bonus experience like in Heart of Fury mode (go into baldur.lua with Notepad or something and set the option "Nightmare Bonus XP" to 1). I also recommend installing a mod that removes the experience cap.

    If you like Sword Coast Stratagems, play Legacy of Bhaal with SCS, not instead of it.

    monico
  • dp85dp85 Member Posts: 7
    OlvynChuru wrote: »
    dp85 wrote: »
    Or is it like HoF where you're supposed to be higher level? Also is there any value playing it over the SCS mod? I recently finished IWD2 and IWDEE for the first time (after owning the original games on disc for near 20 years). Played both with max HP and on the highest (non-HOF) difficulties and really enjoyed them so kind of wanted to do a replay of the BG games.

    Legacy of Bhaal is not balanced for a level 1 character. It's possible to beat Legacy of Bhaal starting at level 1, but only if one REALLY knows what one is doing. I recommend enabling the option to have enemies in Legacy of Bhaal mode give bonus experience like in Heart of Fury mode (go into baldur.lua with Notepad or something and set the option "Nightmare Bonus XP" to 1). I also recommend installing a mod that removes the experience cap.

    If you like Sword Coast Stratagems, play Legacy of Bhaal with SCS, not instead of it.

    Thanks for the quick response... I think I'll go with Insane difficulty and SCS if it's a bit more balanced that way.

    OlvynChuruleeux
  • spacejawsspacejaws Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 327
    edited October 24
    You can also turn off enemy bonus damage and max hp per level to help out with a level 1 party. I'm playing on PS4 as a Beastmaster and having a familiar (pseudo dragon) helped a lot because it got some great buffs and is hard to hit. It became my early level tank.

    Until you start getting good THACO improvements it seems like early game is firing projectiles waiting for critical hits as they are the only attacks that will hit the bonus ac creatures gain. Even Gibberlings and Xvarts cannot be hit with a 19 roll and +5 thaco bonus. Jaherias bless (bonus attack rolls) plus entangled (-2 enemy AC) can help if you have someone with a high enough attack roll. With my beast master I also put 2 pips into 2 handed weapons to allow for a crit on a 19 roll as well as 20 so I'll hit more often.

    Pseudo dragon is impervious to petrify which made Basilisk hunting easier later on for some quick level gains. I stuck with Khalid, Jaheria and Garrick so we would all level quickly then recruited Minsc at level 3/4. Garrick had Stinking Cloud which can cheese a lot of encounters. Once enemies were unconscious their AC plummets allowing Khalid, Minsc and my crossbow wielding ranger get some good hits quickly. To be honest the Gnoll fortress sucked hard. I prefer few stronger enemies than tons of weal enemies cause you can be there for ages trying to deal with them all its such a slog.

    For some extra cash hunting winter wolves or ankhegs using stinking cloud fron Dynaheir and Garrick then once I got to level 5 I swapped Garrick for Brawnen and ran around killing the random assassin enounters for kicks. Then I went and cleared the mines kinda alright. Mulaheys skellys were the worst part I just collected all the shit and ran out the door.

    Feel like there should have been an XP bonus. Early game was really infuriating and I can't imagine being able to do it without the familiar unless I just kited enemies the entire time which would have got tiresome fast.

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 5,185
    Just beating Shank and Carbos will get you to around level 3 or 4 in Legacy of Bhaal mode so it's kind of a personal preference thing. You'd also probably max out your levels by the end of the Nashkel Mines if you were playing solo unless you have a xp cap-remover.

    monico
  • monicomonico Member Posts: 190
    Is it doable ? Yes.

    Is it balanced ? Hell no !

    But it can be fun (my brother hates it, to him, it just makes the fights longer, not smarter since the AI is the same), personally I love it and almost exclusively play with LoB on nowadays.

    I don't have SCS though, which makes for a totally different and more challenging game from what I've heard.

    I'd suggest to try LoB with a custom party first. A few tips:
    - forget about magic missiles and fireballs. The key is debilitating spells (blindness, web, slow, etc.)
    - ranged is quite effective, since you can have good thac0 early on, and can manage the terrain/aggro to your benefit
    - summons are buffed (not as high as LoB enemies, but quite significantly). In fact, a totemic druid can solo BG1 in LoB without too much trouble (until final fight at least). Even easier if you "cheat" and import a max-lvl Totemic Druid from the black pits or remove the XP cap : Fire Elementals (you get them at 200k XP) are beasts, and their immunity (i think it's +2 weapons and lower ?) means that even Sarevok can't hit them. A bit too cheesy maybe though...
    - if you rely heavily on physical damage (fighters, archers or summons), I strongly suggest adding a Scald to your group.

    The main difficulty you'll face in LoB early on is actually hitting the enemies (they get -11 AC), so any way you can reduce your thac0 is good. The other option obviously is to not have to make a thac0 roll (hence the power of webs + ranged weaponry)

    StummvonBordwehrGrond0
  • spacejawsspacejaws Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 327
    Balrog99 wrote: »
    Just beating Shank and Carbos will get you to around level 3 or 4 in Legacy of Bhaal mode so it's kind of a personal preference thing. You'd also probably max out your levels by the end of the Nashkel Mines if you were playing solo unless you have a xp cap-remover.

    Only with the ini edit on PC. If you play on consoles LoB XP is identical to core difficulty. So you will spend 5 whole minutes trying to crit a single Xvart successively for that sweet 35xp.

    Balrog99
  • BelacRLJBelacRLJ Member Posts: 34
    Piggybacking on this question:

    If you have SCS installed, what is the optimal difficulty setting if you are looking for:
    1) As hard as possible, but
    2) Balanced for a traditional playthrough (character starting at level 1, adding companions as they go up to an eventual party of 6)

  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 379
    SCS difficulty levels have very little impact on low-level play (if you're using the recommended "no damage increase" settings). You might see a few more monsters at higher difficulty settings, but they don't have any special abilities to turn on at higher difficulties and their stats don't change. Really, it's the optional tactical challenge components and the global AI improvements that mess with your strategy. Improved kobolds? Better not rush to the Nashkel mines; you'll need a few levels under your belt first. Better calls for help? Always watch for enemy reinforcements and be ready to disengage if you have to.

    So then, go ahead and play at Insane if you think you can handle it.

  • monicomonico Member Posts: 190
    BelacRLJ wrote: »
    Piggybacking on this question:

    If you have SCS installed, what is the optimal difficulty setting if you are looking for:
    1) As hard as possible, but
    2) Balanced for a traditional playthrough (character starting at level 1, adding companions as they go up to an eventual party of 6)

    Never played SCS myself, but from what I gathered, the AI and difficulty in general is significantly improved (and in a more sensible way than LoB, which is totally different and just increased enemies stat in a ridiculously high manner).

    I think that SCS without LoB should be a more interesting challenge, allows you to make real use of every strategy and spells (sleep, for example, has absolutely no use in LoB, damaging spells are, at best, underwhelming).

  • BelacRLJBelacRLJ Member Posts: 34
    jmerry wrote: »
    Improved kobolds? Better not rush to the Nashkel mines; you'll need a few levels under your belt first.

    So then, go ahead and play at Insane if you think you can handle it.

    Thanks. I just ran a level 2 party through the mines and it was an interesting new challenge. Had to scout out each kobold party on the lowest level and soften them up with Entangle/Color Spray/Sleep, and only got through the battle at the end of the cave by sending Minsc in berserked, hosing down the battlefield with Sleep and arrows, and having multiple party mages magic missile the shaman.

    After 3 tries where the shaman got off Horror and it turned the tide of the battle, watching him try to cast it on a berserking maniac with no other party members in range was very satisfying.

    monicoStummvonBordwehr
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