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Self imposed rules

PaladinsareLG9PaladinsareLG9 Member Posts: 2
I'm wondering what other players use to keep the game more interesting / challenging. I've been playing BG for (God help me) a couple of decades now but I wanted it to feel more like a PnP experience. So some of the self imposed rules I have are:

1. I play on core rules but only take random HP increases every other level. On even level ups I roll randomly and odd max. This keeps me from being overly disappointed if I get a bad roll.

2. If a companion dies but are not whacked I raise them but they are out of the game. If they have a counterpart they are also out of the game to assist in that NPC's 'recovery'.

3. 40 arrows or 60 bullets max per character. This makes me have to engage enemies close up even at low levels which is quite fun.

4. I don't swap armor around. A suit of armor fits one character only.

I've got a bunch more but want to hear from you all.



  • jsavingjsaving Member Posts: 1,028
    In BG1 I typically don't equip launchers of any type (bows, crossbows, etc) because I think missile weapons are hopelessly OP in that game. I don't say that to judge anyone who plays differently, I just find the game to be too much of a breeze unless I impose that restriction.

    In BG2 I typically don't use insect/simulacrum spells and never use HLAs until after defeating Irenicus.

  • NoonNoon Member Posts: 194
    edited December 2020
    I don't use any pre-buff and walk straight to the enemy with my whole party to trigger their attack and then i react accordingly. So i get a somewhat fair fight.

  • ConwanConwan Member Posts: 30
    edited December 2020
    I generally try not to use multi-classes, because otherwise those are all I play. Fighter/Thief, Fighter/Mage, Fighter/Cleric... Everything just becomes better with Fighter in front of it.

    However, I want to try out some new class kits. Currently going through the game as a Blade (since some of y'all convinced me it's better than a Skald) and I like that I have to be more careful and think ahead. It's not just "put webs and fireballs in mage slot." I'm actually learning to use buff spells as well, which I usually just cast with a Fighter/Cleric.

    Edit: I also always rewrite the biography when creating a character. That way the new Charname feels like a more unique character: having had a different upbringing.

  • PaladinsareLG9PaladinsareLG9 Member Posts: 2
    Yes I definitely add my own biography to suit the CHAR I'm playing, but alignment in this game unfortunately means so little. I generally start out as NG just because I've had Gorion's moral input on my upbringing but when exposed to the real world, I act accordingly.

  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 12,009
    When I use self imposed rules, its for rp rather than challenge. Though challenge does often come with it.

    Depending on how I've imagined the character in my head, I might:

    never steal from a house
    avoid every fight possible through dialogue
    initiate every fight possible through dialogue
    turn down certain kinds of quests

    Some are more challenging than others, but the skies' the limit.

  • Very_BigSwordVery_BigSword Member Posts: 214
    -Full HP on level up, insane difficulty with damage increase on to balance. I also have a mod to give enemies their max HP.
    -No resting allowed until somebody is fatigued, except at Inns. No "rest until healed" either - time is money! Spells memorised have to last for one or more maps depending on travel times, if I can't manage I have to run back to an inn. This encourages me to use wands, scrolls, pots instead of hoarding.
    -No reload if companion gets chunked.

  • DinoDinDinoDin Member Posts: 1,326
    edited December 2020
    -core rules, accepting everything that comes with that
    -stat re-allocation, but no stat reroll
    -only reload from inns or certain safe areas when inns aren't available (i.e. start room of Candlekeep dungeon)
    -only reload on main character death, NPC permadeaths are real
    -no cheesing combat encounters: no offscreen AoE ambushing, no aggro and draw, etc.
    -mostly playing to alignment, if good/lawful no stealing even if you can get away with it
    -no abusing the XP system -- i.e. scroll XP boosting, soloing for a short term
    -playing through the areas of the game somewhat as intended, not bee-lining to some easy to get OP gear

    About all I can think of now, I'm sure there's a few more.

  • SirBatinceSirBatince Member Posts: 854
    edited December 2020
    -solo since 1998

    -core and max hp on level

    -no wand/scroll-heavy playstyle

    -always human, no dual-classing ever

    -8 hours rest only

    -no cheesing that brings the game to a halt (like waiting for a gnoll to d20 drizzt)

    -allowed to cheat-outline traps because they're lame as hell and i know the general locations of them all anyway

    -allowed to kill tazok, semaj and angelo separately at the final fight because they and the auto-traps are unbearable when sarevok is going meatgrinder mode

    -spellcaster run allowed infinite alacrity because it makes the gameplay much faster and fun. enemies cheat by sometimes having uninterruptable spellcasting anyway so this is payback

    -drizzt, shandalar, albert, alectec, karoug, daer'ragh, demonknight and ithtyl calantryn must die every playthrough

  • RidcullyRidcully Member Posts: 98
    OCD rules: or more accurately CDO rules :)

    Scrolls can only be scribed in alphabetical order

  • BalladBallad Member Posts: 204
    Like someone already said, my rules depend on the Charname I am playing. Lately, I've been trying to play more in the spirit of my Charname's class and alignment. For instance, My LG Paladin Charname does not condone any stealing / pickpocketing / breaking into houses and refuses to take quests from lawless/disingenuous agents (like the thieves guild of Baldur's Gate).

    In general, I feel like most people only stay true to their alignment to the extent it benefits them. As soon as going another route would yield better rewards, they're quick to make an exception. I've definitely been guilty of this as well. It can be outright painful to forgo pickpocketing the halfling in Ulgoth's for his ring of free action or gnoll-cheesing Drizzt, but when I manage not to, there's a sense of moral satisfaction I cannot quite rationalize.

  • TaylanTaylan Member Posts: 72
    edited January 17
    I don't use any really strict rules right now (not a constantly repeating player like y'all anyway, so vanilla is still fun for me), but I hate cheesing fights or really doing any kind of unrealistic meta-gaming, with the one glaringly obvious exception of saving/loading a lot. :D

    So for instance before I installed SCS, I would try not pre-casting anything before going into battle, because "my characters couldn't have known they were about to get into battle." I pre-cast now since enemies do the same on SCS.

    No cheesing also means no abusing webs and fireballs for instance, although after having like literally a dozen unused explosive oils/potions in my potion case and 3-4 wands of fire in my inventory, I started using them much more liberally, just not via kiting and stuff. I just reached the maze at the end and still have almost a whole character's inventory full with wands... I should probably increase the game's difficulty settings further to really force me to use all that stuff. Also have tons of powerful potions left over. Same with scrolls.

    No unrealistic meta-gaming also means no constant resting, especially if my character is up to an important task. E.g. I just had to make the difficult choice of resting in the maze because the fight with the greater doppelgängers and Sarevok left me quite depleted. I justified it by thinking that Sarevok probably has to rest as well!

    Oh, I make an exception for thievery though. Imoen's gotta clear out every house she can find. She just can't help it. :P And for that I do abuse the fact that opening a "guarded" container then quickly exiting the room allows you to escape punishment even if you waltz right back in to do the same thing for the next container.

  • SelerelSelerel Member Posts: 72
    I don't impose any functional or tactical rules on my party, and I always play unmodded on core rules, and I also have been playing for years and years...

    I keep it interesting simply by embracing roleplaying a specific character for each runthough, and trying to metagame as little as possible. As opposed to having a specific plan for party setup or quest order, I try to just naturally follow what my character would do, only reload when charname dies,, and kind of surpise myself with what the results are.

    I'll just make a new character, say a Chaotic evil Human Berserker, I'll say to myself "prideful, violent, unhinged, doesn't like to be controlled, etc. etc." (or whatever) and try to give a little bit of a backstory or motivation. That's it...2 weeks later, I'm hunting sirens with Imoen, Neera has petrified herself, I rebuffed Khalid and Jaheira, and I still haven't gone south of Beregost. Wasn't planning that, but that's just how this playthrough is going.

    I'm also trying to go through the saga with every class (including most kit/dual-class combos), so it's nice to have a kinda random playthrough each time.

  • RhythmMachineRhythmMachine Member Posts: 7
    Wow... I'm playing again after enjoying the original version 20 years ago, but from the looks of your rules you're all a few steps ahead of me. My rule is "don't reload more than 10 times unless I die more than 10 times". So far, I'm sticking with it.

    Okay, so I sometimes stretch it to include having a lock-pick or pcik-pocket fail, too.

    Or other things.

    Other than that, I'm very strict with it.

  • ArviaArvia Member, Moderator Posts: 1,635
    Wow... I'm playing again after enjoying the original version 20 years ago, but from the looks of your rules you're all a few steps ahead of me. My rule is "don't reload more than 10 times unless I die more than 10 times". So far, I'm sticking with it.

    Okay, so I sometimes stretch it to include having a lock-pick or pcik-pocket fail, too.

    Or other things.

    Other than that, I'm very strict with it.

    Those are mostly rules of people who have been playing for ages and want extra challenges or entertainment. There's no "better" or "less valid" way to play, this is not a competition. So, enjoy the game in whichever way you see fit, and if you ever get bored with it, you can find inspiration here how to spice it up again :wink: .

    Besides, limiting reloads is already quite a challenge if you haven't played the game for 20 years.

  • marcnivarmarcnivar Member Posts: 111
    I have considering a playthrough with no own pre-buffing for certain battles (when you are in a place that cannot expect a battle to come) before trying SCS. But I'm not sure whether it will be more fun if I just go for SCS.

  • DyrmazDyrmaz Member Posts: 7
    edited March 7
    I always add or remove my own rules in what matches my charname and his alignment.
    Some staple rules are:

    -no min max no power gaming. Always core difficult sometimes max HP rolls (neera for example)
    -try to roleplay as much as possible. for example when i play druids,rangers i will not fight animals.
    -no cheese no metagaming knowledge
    -roll the dice and live with it. I do switch some points in charackter creation but no 18,18,18,3,3 stats.
    I always try to make the attributes like NPCs or a real human being.

    -I view NPCs as real human beings in my rp
    -dont rotate gear and armor, why should i wear the armor of another person?
    -specific gear for specific npcs... minsc no plate armor for example.

  • LelandGauntLelandGaunt Member Posts: 83
    Very interesting thread, lots of great ideas! Okay, I'm still pretty far from playing the games for decades, more like a few months now, so a lot of it is still very fresh for me, but it can sure be a lot of fun to make yourself some kind of personal ruleset instead of just "going through the same steps" over and over again. Especially when it comes to spellcasting there's a lot of room for some self-restrictions to stay away from the cheese. Some examples:
    - A lot of the high level arcane stuff is just outright insane imo, like Time Stop. I hate it when enemies like liches use this one against me: breaking a sweat, huge eyes staring at the combat log in fear and loathing, gnashing my teeth, seconds turn to minutes, all the while terrified of which horrible thing that guy might pull off next... never used that one myself. Never even tried and probably never will. I see how this one's probably super easy and strong, but that kind of brutal tension is just something I wouldn't even wish for my worst enemies. Btw: do liches use combat logs ;) ?
    - in a similar vein I avoid all those friendly fire AoE damage spells like Fireball, Skull Trap or all those X-Cloud thingys. Okay, I mainly do it to keep myself (or the AI) from blowing myself up in the thick of battle, but I also never use them in these situations where it might be perfectly easy and safe. Opening some door in a dungeon, throwing some Cloudkill into the next room while your party chills out far away from the danger zone? Lame. This also makes some encounters like that bandit crew in the Athkatla sewers a lot more challenging.
    - Haste: after first realizing how strong that one is, I basically used it all the time. Now I see that rest-spamming after every other fight just because Aerie's feet hurt is also pretty lame. So my second party never used haste and kept away from the rest button as much as possible in general. First playthrough? Spent easily way more than 120+ days in chapters 2 and 3 before heading to Spellhold, even if I saved all the hard stuff like dragons, liches or beholders for later. Second playthrough? Arrived in Brynnlaw after merely 2 months, but I had finished just about EVERYTHING beforehand, well, minus Twisted Rune and Watcher's Keep post level 1... and on a sidenote I also learned that Slow can be a perfectly decent replacement spell even if enemies often save against it.
    Or when it comes to character generation: if you really want to minmax your stats (I admit I do it all the time), cool, go ahead, but don't just take all those juicy "max" advantages, but also live with the consequences of your "min" disadvantages. Want to dump charname's charisma to 3? Why not, but don't just "sail around" that one by picking one of those 17 charisma companions as party leader. Be the leader yourself. Talk to the people. See how all those commoners want to vomit when they see you. Watch potential companions show the finger to your ugly face. Let the merchants charge you extra, because hey, simply entering their store you might just scare their other customers away^^ my next charname might become some 5 int dumb-dumb, I'd welcome some fun suggestions on how to stay true to that one...

  • DyrmazDyrmaz Member Posts: 7
    Thank you for your input! I like to limit Mages to their special for example Xzar mains Necromancy spells, Edwin Conjuration etc.

  • LelandGauntLelandGaunt Member Posts: 83
    Absolutely, sticking to the spellcasters' specializations as much as possible instead of just picking the best of the best can also greatly enhance the whole experience and make your mages more unique. With Edwin in BG2 that was rather easy, lots and lots of overpowered conjuration stuff all over the place, but Xzar in BG1 was really more interesting in that regard, because most of the low level necromancy spells didn't seem to be so superstrong and at times just a little more tricky to utilize. I haven't really used most of the illusion school yet, bit will do so soon with Jan...

  • DinoDinDinoDin Member Posts: 1,326
    - Haste: after first realizing how strong that one is, I basically used it all the time. Now I see that rest-spamming after every other fight just because Aerie's feet hurt is also pretty lame.

    Love the additions to this thread. Yeah, this made me realize that I'm the same, even though I don't have a strict no-haste rule. I'll definitely burn haste scrolls and potions, but almost never memorize on mages. Mainly because it does encourage rest-spamming. And the game experience feels alot more fun without rest spamming.

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