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Beast Master Help for a New Player

Hello, I'm a new player to both AD&D and Baldur's Gate in general. Now, I did some research before hand so, I have some basic understanding of the game rules, such a Thaco and armor class, dual class vs multclass, ect... I also played the game as a fighter until I reach beregost, but I found the fighter was too boring for me. I thought I'd give the beast master a try my second try since it sounds cool to me. I just have a few questions. I would appreciate no spoilers if possible.

1.) If the familiar dies, does the PC lose constitution permanently as it does for a mage.

2.) What familiar is better the pseudo dragon or fairy dragon?

3.) What's a good choice for a racial enemy, I'm completely lost in what to choose.

4.) Will I find much use out of the animal summoning abilities? It seems I may not get my first ability until much later and won't see the second ability at all in the first game. Is it kinda pointless by then?

5.) Should I dual class this into a cleric? If so, what level should I stop at with my first class?

6) Any other tips you can give me for this class/kit?

7.) This is an off topic question, but I feel the need to ask here instead of starting a completely new thread for it. I did spoil myself a little and looked up a few early items and where to find them, and I found the ring of wizardry near friendly arm. It must be powerful since its worth like 9000 gold, which is more gold than i need in the beginning of the game. I was curious, should I sell it, and keep the gold, or is worth using on any mages i find through the game?

Comments

  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 6,958
    LividSky wrote: »
    Hello, I'm a new player to both AD&D and Baldur's Gate in general. Now, I did some research before hand so, I have some basic understanding of the game rules, such a Thaco and armor class, dual class vs multclass, ect... I also played the game as a fighter until I reach beregost, but I found the fighter was too boring for me. I thought I'd give the beast master a try my second try since it sounds cool to me. I just have a few questions. I would appreciate no spoilers if possible.

    1.) If the familiar dies, does the PC lose constitution permanently as it does for a mage.

    2.) What familiar is better the pseudo dragon or fairy dragon?

    3.) What's a good choice for a racial enemy, I'm completely lost in what to choose.

    4.) Will I find much use out of the animal summoning abilities? It seems I may not get my first ability until much later and won't see the second ability at all in the first game. Is it kinda pointless by then?

    5.) Should I dual class this into a cleric? If so, what level should I stop at with my first class?

    6) Any other tips you can give me for this class/kit?

    7.) This is an off topic question, but I feel the need to ask here instead of starting a completely new thread for it. I did spoil myself a little and looked up a few early items and where to find them, and I found the ring of wizardry near friendly arm. It must be powerful since its worth like 9000 gold, which is more gold than i need in the beginning of the game. I was curious, should I sell it, and keep the gold, or is worth using on any mages i find through the game?

    1) Yes.
    2) The pseudo dragon is a better fighter, but is still really easily killed so you're better off just keeping it in your backpack. The advantage of the fairy dragon is it can cast invis 10' (covering you as well as it), but it doesn't get that ability until BG2EE.
    3) If you plan to play Siege of Dragonspear you might want to consider demon. Otherwise you could just pick something more standard like ogre or spider.
    4) Even weak summons are pretty handy as they give you a chance to attack unopposed for a round or two (or run away). You're right though that you won't get the opportunity to use that spell until late in BGEE.
    5) Up to you. My suggestion would be to see how you get on as a single class rather than complicate things when you're still learning the game - but do what seems fun for you :p.
    6) You get excellent stealth with this character, so can use that for scouting ahead and deciding on the best way to deal with enemies you spot.
    7) It's pretty useful for mages, particularly while they are relatively low level. If you're intending to keep mages in the party, I would be inclined to hold onto it.

  • jmerryjmerry Member Posts: 1,793
    Some things to note about that beastmaster-cleric dual:
    - While you're allowed to take proficiencies in metal blunt weapons once you're a cleric, you can't specialize in them. The only weapons you can specialize in as this combination are clubs, slings, and staves.
    - A ranger/cleric combination gets some spells added to their cleric spell list - but only if they gain access to those spells as a ranger. You'll need enough levels to use those Animal Summoning spells with ranger spellcasting if you want to use them with the cleric's far larger pool of spell slots.
    - The armor restriction while remain after you dual-class. No heavy armor for you, ever.

    Some markers on possible levels for a dual-class:
    - Beastmaster 6. 91000 XP needed to complete the dual (36K+55K). The latest you can dual and get your ranger abilities back in the BGEE campaign. Specialization and dual-wielding can increase your attacks per round, but you don't get the universal +1/2 from the seventh warrior level.
    - Beastmaster 8. 375000 XP needed to complete the dual (150K+225K). Level 1 ranger spells including Animal Summoning 1, and you get your ranger abilities back during the SoD campaign. Obviously, you would dual right after the Sarevok battle for this. Or, without SoD, you could dual-class as soon as you start BG2.
    - Beastmaster 9. 750000 XP needed to complete the dual (300K+450K). If you don't have SoD, this is a good option for dual-classing early in BG2. All nine warrior hit dice, and you pick up another proficiency. The much faster experience gain of BG2 means you get past that downtime pretty fast.
    - Beastmaster 10. 1275000 XP needed to complete the dual (600K+675K). Level 2 ranger spells unlocked, including Animal Summoning 2.
    - Beastmaster 12. 2325000 XP needed to complete the dual (1200K+1125K). Level 3 ranger spells unlocked, including Animal Summoning 3.
    - Beastmaster 13. 2850000 XP needed to complete the dual (1500K+1350K). Full warrior power, including that last APR gain. But it takes almost as much experience to complete this as it does to bring a single-class character to high level abilities.

    If you're just playing BGEE, I wouldn't recommend the dual. After all, you can't use a bow if you're a cleric.

  • LividSkyLividSky Member Posts: 2
    Thanks for replies! I guess I should've mentioned I own the whole trilogy and want to play through it all. I think the whole dual class thing is still ahead of me right now, so I may just single class it my first time around. I guess another thing I could do is just multi-class cleric ranger but then I'm not playing a beastmaster, am i? :D

    I read somewhere that ranger/cleric once was able to cast all druid and cleric spells, but apparently that's been patched, and on the wiki it says I can only cast up to level 3 druid spells.

    Can anyone tell me how good or bad the level 1-3 druid spells are? Are there any that would remain useful throughout the series? I figured I'd ask since beast master gets access to these.
    The pseudo dragon is a better fighter, but is still really easily killed so you're better off just keeping it in your backpack.

    What do you mean by keeping it in my backpack? Like storing the creature in my inventory? I can do that?

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 6,964
    Level 2 and level 3 druid spells kinda suck, especially when you compare them with the cleric spells at those levels. I'd be willing to bet you won't end up using any of the druid spells at all except maybe Entangle (and even that is not very useful once you get hold person as a level 2 cleric spell).

    Beastmaster is actually pretty fun, but definitely not a power gamer's choice. If you go with an elf BM, you'll get the bonus for long & shortbows. That bonus with an 18 strength makes for a stealthy sniper that can use a composite bow to deadly effect. In BG1 you'll rock with that!

  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 6,958
    LividSky wrote: »
    I read somewhere that ranger/cleric once was able to cast all druid and cleric spells, but apparently that's been patched, and on the wiki it says I can only cast up to level 3 druid spells.
    That's true, but you can easily add them back in if you want. In the LUA file, you'll find a line saying SetPrivateProfileString('Game Options','Cleric Ranger Spells','1') - just change 1 to 0.

    Can anyone tell me how good or bad the level 1-3 druid spells are? Are there any that would remain useful throughout the series? I figured I'd ask since beast master gets access to these.
    The spells are much less useful in general than cleric ones. One exception is call lightning, which does huge amounts of damage - but has the major restriction that it only works outdoors.

    The pseudo dragon is a better fighter, but is still really easily killed so you're better off just keeping it in your backpack.
    What do you mean by keeping it in my backpack? Like storing the creature in my inventory? I can do that?
    You can - just talk to it and select the relevant option.

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