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Shopping in Thay: a bit lacklustre imho - warning spoilers

Warning - spoilers (but not a whole lot)

So we get to visit Thay in Neeras quest line in ToB. Epic city and a fun quest with a shout out to IWD, so what’s not to like? Well the shopping I say.

The shops in Thay seem a bit lacklustre - unless you got a real fetish for paper. There be scrolls and not much more. Real fun if you are running a party of mages, but otherwise it’s a bit of letdown. By the time you get to Thay you should have a rocking spell book, and the extra scrolls won’t flip the odds in favour of the mages any more than they already are.

When we play the black pits part 2 we get a different layout of shopping in Thay. Whatever happened to the class balanced loot in the black pits? And how did we end with another one sided mage fest in ToB?

I would love to see something fancy, especially some exotic books if we have to stick with the theme. A book the gives some more HP, proficiencies, elemental resistance or even stats. There must be mages who would pay good money for such stuff - if not in Thay, where else?!

At least in my opinion shopping in Thay seems more like a missed opportunity, than something worth the while. The quest is otherwise fun, but could have taken place in Umar Hills...



  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 1,794
    Thayan shopping?

    First, there are the unique items: Kazrah's shield and the Cloak of the Lich. That's already better than most of the other EE companion quests in ToB - only the Silver Dragon Scale from Dorn's quest can compete.

    Then there are additional copies of useful items you might already have some of - a helm of defense, all the AC belts you could ever want, a wide array of wands. That even includes a wand of wonder.

    There's ammunition for sale, including the rare arrows of dispelling and detonation; if you have some in your pack already, you can sell them to multiply the stock and pick up a large supply.

    The priest offers a selection of priest scrolls, usable even by certain classes that don't get the spells in their spellbooks. A paladin can cast Champion's Strength, a ranger can cast Chaotic Commands, a monk can cast Free Action. These scrolls are not available anywhere else in the game.

    Those merchants are very much worthwhile. What, were you expecting them to be more useful than all the other ToB merchants put together?

  • Rik_KirtaniyaRik_Kirtaniya Member Posts: 1,741
    Plus some very controversial, morally questionable, vile and despicable stuff that would be used without regret by only the most evil of wizards. Stuff like a wand that makes your enemies heads bloat up and burst into meaty chunks with blood splattering all over, something like Azura's Black Star that can be used to capture the souls of innocent kids and then use them to enchant a homework notebook with endless questions, a cookie that you can give to someone that causes everyone to never pay attention to that person and make them a social outcast, a cursed pair of googles that will make the user see everything in dazzling psychedelic colours, a cursed amulet that will not let the user consume anything but pineapple pizzas, a tainted resurrection stone that will bring your friends back to life but will make them start hating you forever, and... well, you get the idea...

  • StummvonBordwehrStummvonBordwehr Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 959
    edited November 2020
    My main grievances with the quest and the shopping, is that the shopping is just another mage love fest.

    Mages are already superior to other classes before a trip to Thay. The trip does nothing to alter that, quite the opposite - Neeras quest line could fully equip 1 or 2 mages. Why the massive mage love?

    I am not calling for something utterly broken, but just some fun books or tomes to spice up your life. For instance giving some resistances or feats for the less played classes? Some ranger or cleric stuff perhaps

  • ilduderinoilduderino Member Posts: 746
    edited November 2020
    A trip to Thay should at the very least give you the opportunity to shave your head - make it so number one

  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 1,794
    On my latest run through there, I bought several stacks of arrows of detonation, a bunch of priest scrolls, a helm of defense, that +4 shield, the Cloak of the Lich, a +3 buckler, a bunch of priest scrolls, a ring of regeneration, a ring of invisibility, a bunch of AC belts, and some potions with anti-magic properties (including the otherwise unavailable potions of magic blocking). Several pieces there went into immediate use.

    That's with a party that's not allowed to cast spells. No mages at all. And the main reason I went for the quest so early is the other important warrior item you pick up, the Rod of Reversal - that one's an enemy drop.

    What are they selling for your mage? Scrolls you should already have scribed. Accessories that anyone can use. Duplicates of wands you should already have. And a bunch of low-level robes and the like that you're definitely not going to want.

    No, this shopping trip is not "massive mage love". Your mages might come out of it a little better equipped than before, but that's because of the accessories filling out your collection. Maybe you can afford to give them a ring of regeneration or a girdle of piercing now, or maybe you decide that the Cloak of the Lich is best used on them due to the vulnerability of poor death saves.

  • StummvonBordwehrStummvonBordwehr Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 959
    Hi @jmerry

    Thank you for your in depth reply.

    And yes I actually expected Thay to be the premium spot for shopping, and to be better than all the shops in ToB combined - and then some.

    The shops in ToB are fine as they are, when you consider the places and locations:

    - Saradush, a broken city about to break under a heavy siege - everybody in the city should have taken their turn buying quality items for self preservation...,
    - The wilderness area, a merchant you find enroute,
    - Amekthran, a town invaded by mercenaries (fair enough that fine items have been cherrypicked),
    - Temple service at the watchers keep - not the first place you think of when you have money to spend,

    The grand city of Thay should be even better than the above. Especially when you see what items they dish out for their gladiators.

    I know that I am perhaps wanting too much, but if you consider the options,
    - a ring of regeneration (I like those, but have 2 of those and a ring of Gaxx by now),
    - a shield +5 (Good, but not awesome when you consider the options),
    - a buckler + 3 (for mages only - more or less, bards and thieves have UAI by then),
    - a cloak that replicates 2-3 level 3-4 cleric spells (an honourable mention, and something I actually like),
    - Belts of protection. Nice, but something I am used to pick up after 2 hours of gameplay in BG1ee.

    Extra scrolls level 1-9 are in the other hand fine options for spellcasters. Perhaps more so for bards and thieves. But still something for the arcane magic lovers.

    In all the items are on par with the shopping options elsewhere in ToB. But when I factor in the location (Thay vs Saradus under siege) I am a bit disappointed.

    Yes, I know I am spoiled rotten with all the loot, and Beamdog probably wanted to keep the balance in the game. But why pick Thay then? Thay in the Black pits 2 are just a better Thay than Thay in ToB.

  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 12,009
    Blackbɨrd wrote: »
    I'm only disappointed there were no collars or items for Wilson the bear! That would add a bit more to Wilson and could give an incentive to take him with you (or to do Neera's quest). Wilson can't equip any items :s

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,678
    As Thay is a land ruled by Wizards I find appropriate that there you find mainly items that mages can use, but as @jmerry told you find also some very useful items for not mages, arrows of detonation can be really useful if coupled with some fighter HLA, a single arrow can kill many enemies in one shot, and even if the bosses in ToB are immune there are fights where plenty of enemies have low enough level to allow a fighter with good ranged apr to decimate them in less then one round, rare antimage potions are mainly useful for not mages, as the mages have spell to survive magic attacks, both arcane and divine scrolls can be used by who has UAI, so bards and thieves, the more of them you have the more your thief can use them.

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