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BG1 to BG2 run suggestions

I just finished BG1 and SOD for the first time (have only done runs in BG2 before this) with my FM. I can recreate him or import him, any pros/cons to importing vs creating again? Can you import from both BGEE or SOD?

I’m gonna create a FT for my bg2 leg, last run I did I also made an RC Inq and Sorc. I wanna recreate that party as best I can with NPCs this run.

Keldorn and Jaheira seem like obvious replacements. But druids really don’t stand up to clerics in certain areas, From having her and Viconia throughout BG1. Neera or Nalia for my main arcane? Never used a wild mage besides doing neeras questline, so maybe that would spice things up a bit.

Would also like to pursue a romance this run.

Any advice/opinions greatly appreciated!

JuliusBorisovgorgonzola

Comments

  • MartinWMartinW Member Posts: 46
    I hope you took Bard's Hat from SoD? Then I recommend to take Haer'Dalis in group... with bard's hat and a lot of micromanagement he is real fun, especially after he gets Enhanced Bard Song.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,595
    importing, specially from SoD, you start with more xp, to start at less then 100k xp or at 500k xp makes a lot of difference in the first part of SoA, if it is good or bad depends only on the player taste.

    importing you can carry useful items that other way are not available in the game, the hat is an example.
    (but as i don't own SoD please don't spoil here, in the bg2 section, about SoD items that can be imported, i would really appreciate it as i plan to buy in the future SoD and play it completely not spoiled, at now all i know is the existence of that hat and the name, but not even the class, of the final boss)

    druids can cast most of the divine spells useful for the party, what they lack is the self buffing combat spells (holy power, righteous magic and DUHM) and the ability to wear every armor.
    but they add very useful spells like the insect ones, possibly the best anti caster spells in the vanilla setting, good summons and ironskin.

    jaheira as multi can fight pretty well also without the cleric buffs and compared to let's say viconia has a lot more attacks, +1.5 from level 13 and specialization and +1 if she uses belm, and she can DW pretty well if you spend some pips in it (2 are enough in early-mid soa).
    as multi she can wear every armor and has access to fighter hla (GWW, Hardiness), even if due to the wierd druid progression and being multi will need 6M xp to become a very strong caster.

    but she is a very competent fighter (a str item is needed, but there is plenty of them in BG2) that can be even more useful then a cleric as divine support for a party as she has all the key protections spells, like chaotic commands, better summons and a spell that silences mages and dragons.
    later she has the powerful gating of an elemental prince, that can co exist with a deva or planetar in the same battle.

    she is a very good npc, as long as you don't keep her in the back casting but you have her actually fight DW for high damage or with sword and shield if you need a tank.
    she needs a different style then a cleric, but bg2 needs already a different style then bg, the ranged weapons are way less effective (unless we are talking of archers or mazzy), the casters use different levels of spells and some spells that are super useful in bg in bg2 are completely not effective as almost always saved and later hla kick in.

    depending on how much you are willing to reload neera can be the best or the worst mage option in bg2.
    even without using the dwehomers bad surges will happen so is very risky to use a wild mage to buff the party, and dwehomers are the real reason why she is so powerful, you can cast trough them spells of higher level of what your level should allow, they ignore the 1 spell round rule and give utter versatility as she can cast every spell she knows trough them even if is not actually memorized. and for a lev 1 spell this is crazy good, or crazy bad if you do it in the wrong way, as the surges effects can really create problems.
    i have my way to use her and until now i never had to reload a single time for a surge, but i have always a secondary mage to cast spells on the party and use special precautions when casting on enemies, i also avoid to have more cash of what i really need delaying to sell valuable items and spending the cash i have to buy useful ones.

    this way she is the undisputed better caster in the game, no sorcerer, no edwin and surely no nalia can match her power, even aerie does not come too close even mixing her arcane and divine magic in sequencers.
    other way it is only waiting to have to reload, and reloading enough you can kill dragons with a single chromatic orb, imho it is not the way to go even in a run where reloading is allowed, as you take only the pros of the kit denying completely the cons, instead of playing in a way that mitigates the cons and make them less likely.

    nalia is a very good caster, almost as good as a single class mage, that can use thief weapons and (using the rings you find in the game to boost her skills and some occasional knock spell) that can take care of traps and closed doors and containers.
    i would say that neera is the choice for advanced players or for those that like to cheese abusing of reload, and nalia is a solid and safe choice for everybody else.

    JuliusBorisovJQuailmankaja8RedRodent
  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 20,507
    Currently playing BG2 with my imported character from SoD, - and I definitely recommend importing. New items you encounter make the old game fresher, and additional XP from the start lets me tackle quests in an unusual order, which also leads to a fresh experience.

    In any case, you can import either from BG:EE or from SoD.

    MartinWgorgonzolakaja8DinoDin
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,595
    i really have to try to cheat in xp up to 500k at the beginning of soa at least once, and i fail to see how this would be cheating if i do it with the console or EEkeeper while is not cheating if some one imports from a game created well after soa was created, and specifically designed for much lower starting xp, as also importing from bg you have the double of the xp you get starting in soa, not 6 times more.

    about the order of the quests i would say that in vanilla is not a big problem, very often one of the first ones that i do is the planar prison that is not a super easy one, if i play a cleric usually i play very early the unseeing eye and as i never buy the shield also it is not so easy, but far from being impossible for a low level party.
    there had been people going straight to the twisted rune as fist quest, solo, and succeed.

    modded it can be very different, with tactics mod i don't dare to go very early to the d'arnise keep, my typical parties simply lack of the dpm to overcome tor gal insane regeneration rate, i prefer to face the demons and liches in the temple ruins instead.
    but if playing modded, and tactics or scs does not make much difference, to have more challenge then what is the purpose of having a party with boosted xp?
    you use an hard setup and then you make the things easier, and 400k xp more make the things a lot easier.

    as i told if the xp boost is a good or bad thing is a completely subjective matter, every player has his own taste and his own feelings about it.

    jsaving
  • JQuailmanJQuailman Member Posts: 24
    Dumb question: do
    Druids get PFE?

  • JQuailmanJQuailman Member Posts: 24
    edited May 20
    MartinW wrote: »
    I hope you took Bard's Hat from SoD? Then I recommend to take Haer'Dalis in group... with bard's hat and a lot of micromanagement he is real fun, especially after he gets Enhanced Bard Song.

    I did not, nor do I plan to ever run with a bard in my party....

  • jsavingjsaving Member Posts: 810
    edited May 20
    Unfortunately druids can't cast PFE (the good one) in BG. However you may be thinking of other editions like 3e/5e/Pathfinder where they can.

    Also -- beware of @ThacoBell when making statements like that about bards! :)

    JQuailman
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,595
    edited May 20
    @JQuailman told only that he don't plan to use a bard in this run, not that he believes that bards are not a good class, so probably @ThacoBell and the other bard lovers (and i am one of them) can not complain this time... ;)

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 20,507
    I have to add, I play BG2 with SCS (tuned to the Insane settings), Ascencion and the Tactics Irenicus component. In this particular situation, I really appreciate the SoD extra XP.

    But on a side note, if you've beaten BG2 a few times, even if you don't use difficulty-enhancing mods, there is a chance you won't feel any unfair advantage, - since you can beat everything the game throws at you even if you start in BG2 with 89k XP.

    gorgonzola
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,595
    edited May 20
    tactic's chateau irenicus and scs surely make a lot of difference, ascension probably not so much as at that point to lag of 400k xp is not a problem at all as we are talking of 3-8M xp in a completionist party of 6.

    i perfectly understand the reasons why you appreciate the SoD extra xp, but telling that you appreciate it you admit that the balance is affected, even with your settings (and for a noob the vanilla setting is probably as hard as your one is hard for you as he has 1/1000 of your knowledge and skill).

    weather you play a solo mage, lev 7 instead of 11, or with npcs the extra levels make a lot of difference, imoen will have lev 5 spells and minsc 2 more thac0 and 2d10 more xp to face the durgar proletarians, yoshimo a better stab multiplier and more traps.
    tactics starting dungeon and scs maxed are an harsh setting even starting with 500k xp, no doubt about it, but starting at 89k are even harsher.

    and imho the greatness of tatic's irenicus dungeon is that you have to face so over leveled enemies while you lack of good equipment, you have only a very limited amount of ranged ammo and mostly not enchanted weapons and armors, and WW was very intentional in giving enchanted weapons, armors and ranged ammo only to the boss party, you have to sweat and suffer just to reach it, then you maybe can loot them, your only real resources are your knowledge and skill.
    and i every time struggle to resist to the temptation of using the wands so i can then recharge them later instead of wasting them.

    by the way do you install first the tactics mod component, and also the irenicus in hell one that i know you also use, or scs?
    i think that it can make a difference as maybe scs installed later can change the ai of those encounters.

    @JuliusBorisov

    JuliusBorisov
  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 20,507
    edited May 20
    The readme of the Tactics mod says that first, you need to install SCS, then Tactics. @DavidW in one the G3 threads said that first, you need to install Tactics, then SCS. I went with SCS first, Tactics next, seems to be working.

    I agree that balance in BG2 is affected. But you know, beating BG:EE and then SoD was not that easy, especially if you play with minimal or no reloads. It feels like an accomplishment - to reach BG2 after that. This is why I wouldn't drop a character with whom I completed BG:EE+SoD. Also, I look at the whole BG trilogy as one game and rarely start a new game in BG2, thinking I have to complete BG1 first.

    There is another side to having more XP in BG2 earlier. Top spawns. Such as a lich at the Abandonded Temple.

    56ktivesmmlb.png

    Post edited by JuliusBorisov on
    gorgonzola
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 6,006
    FYI: Even though the xp cap is 500k for SoD, when you import your character to SoA xp over 500k up to 1M will be carried over. You can then level up immediately after talking to Imoen. I do use the BG2 xp-cap remover, so that might be why...

  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 647
    The BG1/SoD cap works by resetting your XP to the cap every time you load a save, and preventing you from leveling with experience past the cap. Experience past the cap is carried over when you import to BG2; it's just that there usually isn't much of it because of the resets.

    Balrog99JuliusBorisovgorgonzola
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 6,006
    jmerry wrote: »
    The BG1/SoD cap works by resetting your XP to the cap every time you load a save, and preventing you from leveling with experience past the cap. Experience past the cap is carried over when you import to BG2; it's just that there usually isn't much of it because of the resets.

    So there's a benefit to going it 'hard-core' then! Say goodbye to sleep on my next Sod run... :s

    gorgonzola
  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 647
    Sleep? Not a problem. You can pause indefinitely, and minimize the program to do other things.

    Your computer overheating because you left the game on too long, and having things crash because of that? Weird glitches accumulating until you have no choice but to quit? Those might be problems.

    Balrog99
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 6,006
    edited May 21
    jmerry wrote: »
    Sleep? Not a problem. You can pause indefinitely, and minimize the program to do other things.

    Your computer overheating because you left the game on too long, and having things crash because of that? Weird glitches accumulating until you have no choice but to quit? Those might be problems.

    That does happen though. I've had it happen more often with NWNEE and NWN2 than with BG or BG2EE but even with those it has happened to me...

  • DinoDinDinoDin Member Posts: 707
    edited May 21
    Alot of chapter 2-3 content in SoA has level scaling though, so I haven't necessarily found it to really break the game all that much. Yes, some of the easier quests such as Maevar or the Copper Coronet stuff are much easier, but those we're always pretty easy for experienced players. And of course the initial dungeon is quite a bit easier. But the meatier stuff like Windspear Hills, the Unseeing Eye, etc, still seems roughly the same to me.

    MartinWgorgonzola
  • MartinWMartinW Member Posts: 46
    DinoDin wrote: »
    Alot of chapter 2-3 content in SoA has level scaling though, so I haven't necessarily found it to really break the game all that much. Yes, some of the easier quests such as Maevar or the Copper Coronet stuff are much easier, but those we're always pretty easy for experienced players. And of course the initial dungeon is quite a bit easier. But the meatier stuff like Windspear Hills, the Unseeing Eye, etc, still seems roughly the same to me.

    Yep. When you get Beholders instead of Gauths, Liches instead of Mummies and packs of Yuan-Ti mages instead of Minotaurs/Umber Hulks it doesn't feel like a lot of XP is always beneficial (especially for smaller party) :D

    JuliusBorisovgorgonzola
  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 20,507
    MartinW wrote: »
    DinoDin wrote: »
    Alot of chapter 2-3 content in SoA has level scaling though, so I haven't necessarily found it to really break the game all that much. Yes, some of the easier quests such as Maevar or the Copper Coronet stuff are much easier, but those we're always pretty easy for experienced players. And of course the initial dungeon is quite a bit easier. But the meatier stuff like Windspear Hills, the Unseeing Eye, etc, still seems roughly the same to me.

    Yep. When you get Beholders instead of Gauths, Liches instead of Mummies and packs of Yuan-Ti mages instead of Minotaurs/Umber Hulks it doesn't feel like a lot of XP is always beneficial (especially for smaller party) :D

    I can only confirm this. Yesterday I had to deal with 2, not one, liches in the Ruined Temple. Mind you, with SCS these liches summoned Dark Planetars etc., - but it was really hard. Basically, all my spells (maximum level 6 at that moment) couldn't hurt them. I managed to win, though, without reloads, but those 2 battles have been literally the most difficult during this run so far.

    gorgonzolaMartinW
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,595
    DinoDin wrote: »
    Alot of chapter 2-3 content in SoA has level scaling though, so I haven't necessarily found it to really break the game all that much.
    it is true that some quests scale, but they scale in a way that makes the harder ones hard for a party at end of chap 2 level, starting with +400k xp makes the easier ones much more easy and when you do the hard ones you are still over leveled as you have both the +400xp and the xp you get from the easy quests.

    it is true that then you can play the hard quests as first ones, but then when you have to play the easy ones you will be super over leveled, so they will become boring and not interesting at all.

    and as i told the fact that a competent player can beat each quest of the vanilla game quite easily, there are many players that play no reload, solo poverty runs or hard modded for that very reason, for them the vanilla game is no more a challenge, does not mean that the balance is not affected.
    it means only that the balancing point is set to make the game difficult but not impossible to novices and with this game, that needs much more knowledge and tactical skills that most of the 3d modern games, that are mostly based on quick reflexes, it means that the balance point is set too low for the experienced ones.

    with the modern 3d games if you use a fraction of the knowledge needed in our games they become utterly easy. take the elder's scrolls series as an example, there you can create poisons to poison the weapon, a potentially unlimited number of them as you collect the ingredients from the environment, and some poison gives from 1 to 3 different types of damage in the form x dmg for y seconds, scaling with your alchemy skill. with a bow, a bunch of those poisons and a cheap invisibility spell or a potion that makes you invisible you can clear almost all the dungeons without risk and effort as each poison will at worst take half of the enemy hp and at best over kill him, then after firing the arrow you go invisible and hide to repeat.
    but then what fun playing them, it is like playing bg2 with a bow that stabs 10x and SoTM to hide after every use of the bow...
    there all the knowledge needed is how to craft some poisons and the invisibility potion, and you can beat the game effortlessly, nothing compared to the knowledge needed in the bg games, where you really have to know how the magic system, the thac0/ac, the ST work to be effective.

  • DinoDinDinoDin Member Posts: 707
    Hmm... I disagree gorgonzola. Though I'm hesitant to, since you've shown alot of knowledge about these games! But I don't actually think the extra 200k-250k experience breaks much of the Ch 2 content.

    I just booted up a game I had stopped playing a few months back, of a SoD imported character. While I didn't quite hit max in SoD, this character is now at 1.06 million in Chapter 2. The experience rewards really really ramp up in BG2, quickly neutralizing any advantage you get from SoD or even previously from TotSC. This character has done just about half of the Ch 2 content, and the easier half -- Copper Coronet, Thieves Guild, DeArnise and the Druid Grove. But still has remaining the Unseeing Eye, Windspear Hills, Umar Hills, and the Planar Prison. Not to mention the oodles of experience you get from the main story Ch2->Ch3 quests.

    Even if I was to dock this current PC the SoD experience, it would only be one level. It really is only about the experience from maybe two or so of the stronghold quests. Obviously adding in the new gear creates some advantages too, but that's going to be quite variable.

    gorgonzola
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,595
    edited May 21
    DinoDin wrote: »
    Hmm... I disagree gorgonzola. Though I'm hesitant to, since you've shown alot of knowledge about these games!
    feel free to disagree, i am surely not the one with the best knowledge here and i sometimes even write wrong things, that then are corrected by who knows better then me... :D

    you say that you have done about half of the chap 2 content and you did not hit the max in sod, let's say that you got 300k more then starting from soa and given that he starts at a little less then 100k, this makes the xp gained in half chap 2 1M - 0.4M = 0.6M.
    or the xp you gain in all chap 2 1.2M, if you evaluation of having done half of it is correct.
    it means that at the end of chap 2 the party starting form SoD cap will have 1.7M xp, while the one starting from bg2 will have 1.3Mxp, it is about 30% more.
    but half way it is 60% more and at the start is 400% more.

    surely as more you progress in the game the less the advantage becomes relevant, up to tob where the party has several millions xp and 0.4M more makes a very little difference, but for a big part of chap 2 the difference is still huge, your fighters will have better thac0 and more hp, your mages will have more spells and earlier access to the next level spells, your thief will have from the start a pretty solid set of thieving skills instead of being a trap finder and door opener and to have to wait to be able to set traps reliably or to hide effectively.

    so, even if to disagree with me is surely allowed and sometimes the best option, as i don't own The Truth about those game, let me disagree with you.
    i still think that the balance is changed and the way the enemy improve as you gain more xp does not match your being more powerful.
    but if this is a problem or not it is completely subjective, some players can feel it as a negative thing, other appreciate it and is even possible to don't care at all of it as anyway what makes the real difference is the skill and knowledge of the player, not a more or less powerful party... ;)

    DinoDin
  • JQuailmanJQuailman Member Posts: 24
    After much thought and one run through the irenicus dungeon. Figured out what I’m going to do. Bringing my FM from SOD and creating a cleric thief to join me. Never played with that multi and it remedies NPCs that I don’t care to take along or have a lacking of. Will take Jaheira as she has been with since BG. Gonna get Neera and Keldorn to round it out. Should be a fun run!

    JuliusBorisovgorgonzola
  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,595
    edited June 1
    it seems a very good party, FM, jaheira and keldorn are a good front line, the CT covers the divine magic with jaheira and can stab for granted high damage as he is able to cast RM and can be buffed as 4th front liner when needed, with less attacks then a proper fighter, but 25 str without items and very good thac0, and after 3Mxp and UAI can use OH a speed weapon, you have the powerful inquisitor DM, the insect spells and 2 dispel on hit weapons, carsomyr and SoTM, so casters are an easy game for that party.
    and later implosion from the CT, that at that point can use RoV and AoP to cast it fast, is super powerful as freezes from a round most of the enemies bypassing ST and MR, can not work on few bosses but works on many end game dangerous enemies.


    the only 2 problems are that the CT will be able to turn undeads late, so maybe it will be useful only in the second fight vs bodhi and a wild mage as main one.
    i don't find safe to cast spells on the party with a wild mage as a wild surge is always possible, to haste a toon and have instead a fireball hit him or have him turned to a bunny is not a good thing, while if it happens to an enemy it can even be a good thing sometimes. so the one that should haste your fighters and buff your party is the FM, and as frontlner it is not ideal as if he has to do it mid battle he has to stop fighting and he must use some of his slots for that purpose at the cost of less slots used for self protection and tanking.
    but if you don't care to reload if a bad surge happens or are ready to deal with the fact that in the long run you will have bad surges, even without casting a single dwehomer, you can use a wild mage as main mage, only avoid to have huge amount of cash, sell the valuable loot only when you need money to buy something ;)
    nalia is a possible option, can be replaced by imoen later for RP reasons if you want and compared to neera, if neera does not use dwehomers, loose only a slot every level, while being 100% reliable and as she can deal with traps and doors (using the thieving rings and some occasional knock spell or thieving potion) can let your CT to push early towards other skills like hide in shadows to stab, set traps and detect illusions.
    if you want to use dwehomers and you know how to do it without over reloading there is no comparison, no one in the game matches the power of neera played in the proper way...

    both the choices are good, each one has pros and cons, and neera can be better for her quest and as you can romance her.

    Post edited by gorgonzola on
    JQuailman
  • JQuailmanJQuailman Member Posts: 24
    Yeah I have no problem reloading and lean to power gaming, otherwise I wouldnt even think of Having Neera long term. Wanted more NPC interaction otherwise I’d just make a sorc.

    On a side note....my CT thieving abilities were moved to the special abilities button and replaced by turn undead. I’d really like to not have to click two buttons to thieve. Can I switch them or make a hot key?

  • jsavingjsaving Member Posts: 810
    In EE, you cannot switch buttons but yes you can make a hotkey.

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