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Useless spells (are they really useless?

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  • EudaemoniumEudaemonium Member Posts: 3,199
    You can also use the sphere in that cheap exploit where you disequip all your weapons and beat people unconscious while they're inside it.

  • magpiemagpie Member Posts: 79
    Didn't the sphere allow a saving throw? I seem to recall trying to be clever with it, only to have it not do anything at all.

  • sunset00sunset00 Member Posts: 309
    magpie said:

    Didn't the sphere allow a saving throw? I seem to recall trying to be clever with it, only to have it not do anything at all.

    yes, exactly! that is my 'little' problem with that spell too! The saving throws to loose to be able to use it... as usually, i do everything to max up the saving throws of my dudes&dudettes in the party (an old habit^.. some even have extra % magic resist on them^).. that means that i noticed that the sphere are almost NEVER working... when you need them the most for a party member (aka when you need them most, aka when the party member is really on the verge to be obliteraded/dying, blocked in a corner or something!^^)... they just succeed their saving throw usually and.. no sphere then. lol

    I say that because i remember a killing and ultra fun tactic i had in Dragon Age I (with 'light', 'underpowered' chars^) , that was working amazingly with a combo rogue ('eliana'? + her bard song skill!) + 1 mage (with a similar no damages orbs!) ; just let the little eliana going straight in the middle of a crazy ennemy mob (suicide?!)... let her begin her bard song (stunning almost all around round/round.. but like in BG immobilizing her totally to work..so no def against the few passing through^).... throw a sphere on her to protect her and... enjoy ; mass stuns around her, no risk for her to be crushed.. and with a second 2 handed rogue specialist with maxi damages on stunned targets... rince & repeat.. was a great little tactic, that.. fun memories on some epic fights.. good DA1 souvenirs. ^ :D
    Now, of course the big difference BG/DA1.. there was NO saving throws for the sphere to work in DA1...that was changing everything of course..*))

    I tried to use a little that kind of tactic in BG.. well, better not try it too much so (for the saving throws thing again)... sure (but could have been a fab tactic too for high levels bards with their high levels bard songs...pity! ;) ).... ;)

    btw.. i tried teleport fields and polymorph self.. those 2 ones could also be excellent for tactical reasons too imo.. and polymorph self could be a life saver with the jelly form (black bears and/or some other 4 att/rounds forms boosted with other enchantments could be fun too imo..and who wants/needs a low lvl druid again?!?) for the pure mages in difficult situations too imo... i always have a few scrolls of those ones available (they are apparently available in infinite numbers in sorc.sundries.. not sure was like that in vanilla BG1 but that's a fact in bgee 2014..not sure if right(?)..but who knows with all the strange 'actualization' things we got...so i don't know now if that's a bug or not -infinite lv4/5 scrolls..but also wands fully rechargeable when sold etc..^ but could be tactically exploited for some unusual fun, especially in BG1 levels, sure too imo^).

    just my 2 cents as usual.. *)

    elminster
  • ZanathKariashiZanathKariashi Member Posts: 2,867
    Technically saving throws are optional, and an ally can fail a save at will....but I'm reasonably sure BG didn't implement it like that.

    If the spell had different effects depending on if the target was hostile (save) or party (no save) that would be another story.

    Should be do-able, since there are spells that have a different effects, but I can't say for sure, still very much a novice at spell-tweaking.

  • SchneidendSchneidend Member Posts: 3,190
    They made Alec-Letec straight up immune to Otiluke's Resilient Sphere in EE. So frustrating.

    TJ_HookerelminsterEudaemoniumDragonspear
  • LordRumfishLordRumfish Member Posts: 936
    You may find room for some under-used spells on specialist casters. Xan, for instance, cannot cast Magic Missile. I load him up with Larloch's Minor Drain to interrupt NPC casters, but I usually also save room for one casting of Charm Person and one casting of Shocking Grasp. I'm not going to tell you Shocking Grasp is good; it isn't. In fact, it's terrible. But in my game I gave Xan as much equipment as I could to give him the option of melee (mixed results, but when the rest of the party was disabled and he was out of spells, he took down Sakul in the Candlekeep Caves in melee with the moonblade).

    When an enemy would get too close, Xan would cast Shocking Grasp and make an attack roll. I won't lie, it usually didn't work. The first time I tried it though, I saw a hit for 15 electricity damage and I was stunned that the spell had actually worked. ^_~

    DullSkullTheSecondSirBaldur
  • CorvinoCorvino Member Posts: 2,269
    Xan is pretty underrated due to his rather pessimistic outlook and inability to use magic missile and fireball. You can use wands to get round most of his shortcomings, and mages are actually more useful debuffing and disabling than they are chucking explosives around.

    RnRClowndockaboomskiBlucherGotural
  • syllogsyllog Member Posts: 158
    Larlochs: (1) Bypasses shield (or PfNM in SCS).
    (2) HP stacks (unlike VT). Combine with infintie spells combo : vg. of +20hp for a turn.

    Shocking Grasp: (1) No damage cap.
    (2) Doesn't do damage as a spell (bypasses spell protections).
    (3) Doesn't do weapon damage (bypasses stoneskin).

    Color Spray: (1) Super pretty! Style counts! ;)

    Spook: (1) Largest save modifier in game. Incredibly useful level 1 spell!

    _____

    Luck: (1) increases damage of other spells (e.g. fireball)
    (2) stacks with chant (both are luck bonuses, each increases crit change by 5pp)

    Glitterdust: (1) Been addressed.

    Detect Invis: (1) Important spell if you have AI mods. Backstabbing is dangerous!

    Ghoul Touch: (1) Save vs Paralysis 1/attack. Blades can easily get 8 attacks/round at low levels...

    PW Sleep: (1) Mini PW Kill. Duration is much too short. But it gets style points. Good for lw lvl mage.

    _____

    ...okay, this list is kind of ridiculous. "Slow", "Polymorph Self", "Power Word Blind"? Those are some of the most powerful spells in the game. (-4 save debuffer, poison & web immunity or total magic immunity, and shut down any creature no matter what (minus targeted spell defenses). [It's notable that Power Word Blind is one of the few spells to be nerfed in SCS - the tactics mod... [partly for AI reasons, but still])

    JuliusBorisov
  • syllogsyllog Member Posts: 158
    edited December 2013
    Kaltzor said:

    Teleport Field feels more like it would just be a general annoyance rather than of any actual use.

    Teleport field is actually considered OP by those who've used it much.
    There is NO SAVE. Stack on or two on top of your characters and they are immune to melee (unless the enemy can teleport at will). Add bows or spells and you've trivialized an encounter.

    Also: Ottiluke's RSphere : GREAT for no reloads. Keep your character or others from dying. There should be no save for that. The save makes it unreliable for enemies I agree though. There are cheaper save or 'die' spells (e.g. lvl 1 blind).

    EDIT: @LordRumfish Yep, just noticed that actually. Teleport field also ignores magic resistance.

    Post edited by syllog on
    JuliusBorisov
  • LordRumfishLordRumfish Member Posts: 936
    syllog said:

    Kaltzor said:

    Teleport Field feels more like it would just be a general annoyance rather than of any actual use.

    Teleport field is actually considered OP by those who've used it much.
    There is NO SAVE. Stack on or two on top of your characters and they are immune to melee (unless the enemy can teleport or has high MR). Add bows or spells and you've trivialized an encounter.

    Also: Ottiluke's RSphere : GREAT for no reloads. Keep your character or others from dying. There should be no save for that. The save makes it unreliable for enemies I agree though. There are cheaper save or 'die' spells (e.g. lvl 1 blind).
    Unless they fixed Teleport Field VERY recently, it ignores magic resistance too.

  • GamingFreakGamingFreak Member Posts: 639
    Illustair said:

    Nobody mentioned Otiluke's Resilient Sphere. It's very useful for a fourth level spell, I remember saving at least one in a fight. It's a life-saver for squishy teammates in tight fights and you could also control the fight by using it on enemies as well. Then again, it's been a long time since I've played BG. But just think about this, how can you go wrong with a shimmering bluish orb? Plus, you can easily brag about it like "look, man, I could cast one of the ARCHMAGE Otiluke's spells"...maybe use it in showing-off a little bit to Viconia; if it doesn't impress her, well it still has its uses.

    Saw a guy use it in a Aec'Letec fight on youtube, it was brilliant for holding the demon off for last while he took care of the other deadbeats first.

    I'd say no spell is useless though there are some where it's just like "what? why would I need this ever?" Which is good, I guess, I can totally understand if someone doesn't need certain spells. Color Spray doesn't seem that great at levels higher than 3 and Sleep is a god-send early in the game but once you reach SoA and ToB it becomes way less useful.

  • nanonano Member Posts: 1,632
    syllog said:

    Ghoul Touch: (1) Save vs Paralysis 1/attack. Blades can easily get 8 attacks/round at low levels...

    Whoa... how low are we talking about?

  • GemHoundGemHound Member Posts: 801
  • elminsterelminster Member, Developer Posts: 16,207
    edited December 2013
    nano said:

    syllog said:

    Ghoul Touch: (1) Save vs Paralysis 1/attack. Blades can easily get 8 attacks/round at low levels...

    Whoa... how low are we talking about?
    Also has syllog actually tested this in game? I tried doing it with Haer'Dalis and it wouldn't work. The most attacks per round I could get while Ghoul Touch was active was 4 (with improved haste). Even if I was using Kundane + Belm before I cast Ghoul Touch.

    CrevsDaak
  • jpersinnejpersinne Member Posts: 23
    Limited Wish isn't terrible, though its usefulness is rather, eh, limited. A wild mage with decent wisdom can use it to replenish dweomers.

  • syllogsyllog Member Posts: 158
    elminster said:

    nano said:

    syllog said:

    Ghoul Touch: (1) Save vs Paralysis 1/attack. Blades can easily get 8 attacks/round at low levels...

    Whoa... how low are we talking about?
    Also has syllog actually tested this in game? I tried doing it with Haer'Dalis and it wouldn't work. The most attacks per round I could get while Ghoul Touch was active was 4 (with improved haste). Even if I was using Kundane + Belm before I cast Ghoul Touch.
    Haven't tried it with BG2:EE (rather, BGTuTu; just know starting the EE series).
    Belm /Kudane shouldn't matter anymore - as previoulsy equipped weapons don't seem to affect attacks any longer.

    Improved Haste + Offensive Spin no longer works I'm told - so you may be right Blades may not get 8 attacks per round with it anymore.
    Though 4 attacks per round isn't shabby, but admittedly not nearly as good.

    You can of course cast Ghoul Touch (+ Strength) via sequencer when a Sword Spider after casting regular haste. That will get you 5 attacks per round in BG:EE. Haven't tried with Improved Haste, but it should get you to 8 Attacks Per round.

  • wizzywazzowizzywazzo Member Posts: 32
    I am wondering what other peoples experience with prismatic spray. It looks like from the outside to be an awesome spell, but every time I have ever tried to use it, It is unreliable. When I think I line up a good shot nothing happens, and when I think I miss, i hit with it. I gave up on it and have moved it to the worthless pile. Anyone else have different results?

  • LordRumfishLordRumfish Member Posts: 936

    I am wondering what other peoples experience with prismatic spray. It looks like from the outside to be an awesome spell, but every time I have ever tried to use it, It is unreliable. When I think I line up a good shot nothing happens, and when I think I miss, i hit with it. I gave up on it and have moved it to the worthless pile. Anyone else have different results?

    All cone spells give me problems. Color spray is great when it works, but like sleep your enemies soon become immune to it, plus it's very difficult to aim.

    wizzywazzojackjackDragonspearCrevsDaak
  • jackjackjackjack Member Posts: 3,251
    I think it would be cool to be able to right click when the spell casting cursor is active, (i.e. when you're choosing where to cast the spell), allowing us to aim conical spells in a manner similar to how we can rotate party formation.

  • GemHoundGemHound Member Posts: 801
    Also, the use of Polymorph other is the fun time when you cast it at an elder orb and turn it into a squirrel(rare). It's rays still get fired, but it instantly becomes a one hit wonder.

  • Eadwyn_G8keeperEadwyn_G8keeper Member Posts: 541
    edited December 2014
    Ressurecting this awesome post mostly so I can have it listed in my Participated file. Also want to express appreciation for all the focus on manipulating Saves as a core strategy in the game. Not something I have really thought about that much so far.

    How to prioritize that in a combat situation with Spook, Glitterdust, GM and Doom versus other goals of Debuffing, Damage dealing etc. will take lots of careful fine tuning. THANKS mucho to all!

    Also wondering about Larloch's Minor Drain which also comes as a Special Ability for Protags of certain Race/Alignment combos. I noticed it has no Save and a very fast Cast. Is it then almost an automatic disrupter?? And, at least until Spellhold in BG2, available to certain Protags while wearing Armor??


    Also including this link to another related post, also worth a bump. http://forum.baldursgate.com/discussion/33965/the-most-underrated-spells#latest

    JuliusBorisovlolien
  • abacusabacus Member Posts: 1,308
    LMD is a fantastic disrupter... At least until you come up against globes of invulnerability, and flat spell level immunities (like Rakashas (sp?!) and Liches).

    Bhaalpowers are definitely ok to cast through armour... But sometimes their casting times are different to the spell versions (Draw Upon Holy Might, for instance, seems to take longer to cast as an innate than it does as a normal spell).

  • OnestepOnestep Member Posts: 225
    Eh, there's very few spells that are ever truly useless. Some of them, though, seem to exist to be somewhat poor variants of spells you might be unable to use because you specialized in one spell school or another.

    CrevsDaakjackjackThacoBell
  • Drago_DarkstormDrago_Darkstorm Member Posts: 18
    (and it's not like it was hard to fix...copy from GM, paste to GD, change the duration/save type to match the blindness effect. Finished.) (though my version goes a step further and is completely PnP accurate, with the visual effect sparkles and dispel invisibility persisting for 4 rounds +1 per level (the dispel repeats at the beginning of each round similar to true-sight), while the blindness/save debuff only applies on the initial cast for 4 rounds).
    I would love to be able to alter some spells to make them PnP accurate - could you possibly share how you've done this in your own game?

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