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Paladin or Fighter/Cleric?

Assume human paladin and dwarven fighter/cleric for a compete run through the series.

Who's the more versatile option? Who's more powerful going into ToB? Does the paladin scale better than the fighter/cleric or vice versa?

I googled around and found a few posts at other forums on this topic, but I'd like to hear what the community here thinks.

ginger_hammer
«1

Comments

  • QuartzQuartz Member Posts: 3,831
    edited November 2012
    Really tough to say. I haven't played Paladin enough so I'm probably biased as a result. Paladins sure are powerful. Fighter/Clerics are incredible from the get-go and stay quite good the whole series. Paladins would just be good fighters for a long time, and then the Clerical side would only start to shine at quite high levels. Draw Upon Holy Might has to be insanely helpful for Paladin, being so fighting-oriented and all.

    Best kit if you ask me is Cavalier. It's just awesome. Yeah, whatever, so you can't use bows and stuff ... whoop-de-doo. Good few combat bonuses, another Paladin spell to spam, at the expense of no bows/crossbows/etc.? Whatevs! Besides, if you really need ranged, just get two pips in Axes and use Throwing Axes. Rather suitable to pick up Azuredge nice and early, throw it at zambies and such.

    And Fighter/Cleric ... well, it's just awesome, forever. I dunno, it's the most logical multi-class there is because there are no real restrictions outside of weaponry.

    BrudeMornmagorRAM021T2av
  • ajwzajwz Member Posts: 4,122
    Fighter cleric on paper would be more powerful in the long run. However, it trns out there is a paladin specific greatsword you can get part way through baldurs gate 2 which makes up for it. It obviously depend what paladin kit you chose, but honestly, the paladin kits are some of the most powerful in the game.

    I'd say that a paladin is a slightly better choice, simply because unless you are soloing, a lot of the combat buffs you can apply as a cleric can be cast by another cleric in your party on you. Plus going into ToB, you get to summon devas anyway regardless of which class you pick.

    Fighter cleric is probably slightly better right at the end game, but paladin will be very powerful for far more of the game than a fighter cleric.

    Having said that, there really is no wrong choice.

    BrudemlneveseRAM021
  • PhilhelmPhilhelm Member Posts: 473
    The Holy Avenger can make for a good argument in favor of the Paladin (Granted, not for BG1). Also, it's cool to be able to detect evil at will, and can give you an idea of what evil enemies are in the area, although this is mitigated by how many times you have played the game and know what to expect. The high CHA also makes for a good face...I for one can't stand the idea of my main character not being the party leader.

    Brude
  • TJ_HookerTJ_Hooker Member Posts: 2,438
    edited November 2012
    Keep in mind that Paladins get a +2 bonus to all saving throws, which would kinda offset the lack of saving throw bonuses from not being able to be a short race.

    Edit: I suppose "+2 bonus" is a little vague, I should have said "+2 bonus compared to other warrior classes"

    Post edited by TJ_Hooker on
    BrudePhilhelmSenashRAM021
  • LadyEibhilinRhettLadyEibhilinRhett Member Posts: 1,078
    edited November 2012
    Shiny paladins. Shiny paladins forever and ever. Be a holy warrior of truth and justice.
    ...then again, I never really liked dual classing. I could never tell the best time to stop advancing in one class and start on another.
    If we're talking multiclass, then fighter/cleric has an advantage of being able to cast divine spells long before a paladin can. But paladins are still all kinds of crazy-awesome.

    BrudeThunderRAM021
  • MillardkillmooreMillardkillmoore Member Posts: 150
    I think you should go Paladin. Specifically, choose the Inquisitor kit. An Inquisitor is extremely powerful from the beginning of the game. Once you get Carsomyr, your Inquisitor becomes an unstoppable monster, capable of seeing through any Illusion and tearing though the defenses of Epic-level Mages without breaking a sweat.

    BrudeAHF
  • sandmanCCLsandmanCCL Member Posts: 1,389
    TJ_Hooker said:

    Keep in mind that Paladins get a +2 bonus to all saving throws, which would kinda offset the lack of saving throw bonuses from not being able to be a short race.

    Not exactly. They just have different saving throws, which are quite good.

    And still not as good as a dwarf.

    Quartz
  • PhilhelmPhilhelm Member Posts: 473
    I think I'll add some more opinions on the matter. Granted, I'm by no means an expert, it's been some time since I've played the game, and I have never played a Fighter/Cleric (not using 2nd edition rules).

    I think that ultimately, the Fighter/Cleric would be the more powerful class. Dual-classing made me feel depressed when I had played as a pure Thief, for instance, since you could play a Fighter/Thief and have more HP, better THACO, weapon proficiencies, and equipment selection (Gauntlets of Ogre Power, for one), al in exchange for one level's worth of Thief skill percentage (big whoop). Without looking at progression charts, if you could squeeze in 7 levels of Fighter and 8+ levels of Cleric, you'd probably lose one Cleric level, along with the associated spells, but gain a much higher HP, better THACO, an extra attack, and weapons specialization.

    From a pure power perspective, I'd argue that dual-classing is a no brainer. Level 7 fighter is the sweet spot, since you'd gain the extra 1/2 attack per round, which should bring you up to 2 attacks per round if you have 2 stars in a weapon specialization. You'd essentially be playing a Fighter with all of the awesome buffing and healing ability of a Cleric.

    The downside is that with dual-classing, you'd have to wait for a long time, sans cheating or strategic grinding, in order for the build to come to fruition. At least when playing a Paladin, you could leisurely go through the game without having to wait to get 8 or so levels of Cleric in order to see the benefits of dual-classing.

    Also, from a more personal perspective, ranged weapons are nice to have, but the idea of a fully armored warrior fighting monsters with a sling is retarded to me. That's one thing that I like about 3rd edition; a cleric can use simple weapons (which includes crossbows) instead of solely blunt. A Paladin could use bows and crossbows without restriction.

    Of course, as I mentioned above, Detect Evil and being forced to have a high CHA is nice to have. Speaking of which, it would be much, much easier to get a higher natural roll for a Paladin than for either a Fighter or Cleric, but this could be amended with cheats. If you don't use cheats, than your Paladin could more easily have a better stat spread.

    Now that Class Kits are introduced to Baldur's Gate, I'd give the advantage to the Paladin on that front, as all three of the Kits are awesome in my opinion.

    As for long-term (i.e. BG2), again, the Holy Avenger is downright awesome, but that's not necessarily reason enough to play a Paladin, and Keldorn would certainly want it, if you want him in your party. A consideration for BG2 is that if you dual-class, you will be forced to limit your Fighter levels to around 7 or so, depending on the experience cap for the Enhanced Edition. This means that you wouldn't be able to try to come up with a potentially more effective level ratio in BG2, unless you played BG1 all the way through as a Fighter. I'm not looking at any of the class or experience charts at the moment, so I'm not sure what the most effective level ratio would be, but it's something to consider. Again, this could mean that you will need more patience to see the powerful build reach fruition.

    Ultimately, I don't have a straight answer. The Fighter/Cleric would be more powerful in my opinion, but you would have to play the game for many hours before your Cleric levels exceeded your Fighter levels, while you could play through as the Paladin and not worry about it, which could potentially mean a more enjoyable gaming experience.

    BrudeRAM021
  • QuartzQuartz Member Posts: 3,831
    @Brude - Lulz, better Breath Weapon.

    What even uses Breath Weapon I'm curious? I know Dragon's Breath does, and Skull Traps, but that's all I know of...

  • PhilhelmPhilhelm Member Posts: 473
    You know what, I wrote all that and then remembered that you specified that you would play a DWARF Fighter/Cleric, so please ignore the dual-classing mumbo jumbo. I always play Human characters so couldn't help but think of it from that perspective. Oops!

    T2avRAM021
  • BrudeBrude Member Posts: 560
    @Quartz Haha I noticed that too when I was writing out the chart. Weird, eh?

  • PhilhelmPhilhelm Member Posts: 473
    Quartz said:

    @Brude - Lulz, better Breath Weapon.

    What even uses Breath Weapon I'm curious? I know Dragon's Breath does, and Skull Traps, but that's all I know of...

    My wife. Just kidding. Or am I...?

    QuartzmlneveseRAM021
  • QuartzQuartz Member Posts: 3,831
    Philhelm said:

    You know what, I wrote all that and then remembered that you specified that you would play a DWARF Fighter/Cleric, so please ignore the dual-classing mumbo jumbo. I always play Human characters so couldn't help but think of it from that perspective. Oops!

    Ya, that tactic is only really worth it if you are *starting* with BGII if you ask me. Otherwise there's just too much beating around the bush and waiting around. I had good success starting BGII though, dual-classing immediately since I was already Level 7, then working my way up in a very short time. I prefer multi-classing, but it actually works darn well there you would get a lot higher level clerically and thus have more spells and such. Still, you wouldn't have Fighter HLAs I don't believe, so...

  • Oxford_GuyOxford_Guy Member Posts: 3,729
    Of the two, a Dwarf Fighter/Cleric with hammers :-)

    Brude
  • ginger_hammerginger_hammer Member Posts: 160
    Fighter/Cleric for me, and with dwarf you can go up to 20 constitution for regeneration plus you will have loads of healing and better spells. I've played paladin before and their spells are pretty feeble so you just play a very goody goody fighter which is kinda boring after a while. Toe-to-toe between the 2 would be a close call.

    Brude
  • MornmagorMornmagor Member Posts: 1,160
    edited November 2012
    Fighter/Clerics dualclass is powerful if you start with Berserker, however you won't get Fighter HLA, so at higher levels a Paladin will probably outshine you in melee, although you can still heal yourself to death and have boatloads of immunities when you want.

    Fighter/Clerics multiclass is just cheese with double cheese on top, you get both Fighter and Cleric HLAs, if you're a dwarf you get an insane boost to your saves which outshines the Paladin one, however, from a p&p point of view it's just too powerful if you allow it to reach high levels in both classes. For Baldur's Gate of course, where cheese exists all over the place, Fighter/Cleric is not that much cheese, Kensai/Mage says hello.

    In general, both a Paladin and a Fighter/Cleric can solo the game, so they are adequately powerful, both of them.

    The Fighter/Cleric will have lower Thac0, which will use spells to counter, the Paladin won't have to.

    The Fighter/Cleric will have access to Crom Faeyr, the most powerful weapon arguably, but a Paladin has access to Carsomyr, or even a Blackguard will have access to silver vorpal sword, along with the ability to raise his strength in game to 23 or 24, making Crom Faeyr and 25 strength not that impressive suddenly.

    They are almost equally powerful as melee fighters, however the F/C will always be more versatile. In return, he will have to boost himself to get the Paladin's thac0, and he most definetely won't be able to heal himself in combat, since if you're getting hit, you will never be able to cast heal on you.

    Also, don't forget that the Paladin will always be ahead in levels.

    The favor is with the F/C, especially if he's a dwarf, but Paladin doesn't fall behind too much.

    QuartzBrudeRAM021
  • bigdogchrisbigdogchris Member Posts: 1,336
    Mages and Clerics both receiver many lower level buff spells that are pretty nice. Going Fighter/Cleric or Fighter/Mage allows you to have a front line melee character that buffs, allowing your standard healer and mage focus on just their primary role.

    BrudeRAM021
  • AHFAHF Member Posts: 1,376
    edited November 2012

    I think you should go Paladin. Specifically, choose the Inquisitor kit. An Inquisitor is extremely powerful from the beginning of the game. Once you get Carsomyr, your Inquisitor becomes an unstoppable monster, capable of seeing through any Illusion and tearing though the defenses of Epic-level Mages without breaking a sweat.

    The double-strength dispel magic is just fantastic. Given the high number of mages in BG2, Inquisitor is my top choice but I don't love spell casting as a cleric. Obviously go with 2-handed swords as your weapon and you arguably the best weapon in both games - the +2 Spider's Bane Sword in BG1 that gives you free action (fantastic for avoiding the webs and for combining with your own mage's web spells) and Carsomyr in BG2. For end game, I also much prefer the fighter HLA than cleric ones.

    They are totally different, however, since you don't get any spellcasting other than true seeing and dispel magic (which at least are two of the most powerful in the game and are cast with a cast time of 1 which allows you to rip off one of them and resume beating your opponent with little break - unlike stopping for an entire round to cast true seeing with a cleric).

    (Thanks @Forse for the correction!)

    Post edited by AHF on
    vladpen
  • ForseForse Member Posts: 106
    Spider's Bane is +2. Still a great weapon though.

    I'd say pick whatever you want. With a kit like Inquisitor or perhaps Cavalier, the paladin is as good as the F/C. Having quick-cast True Sight and an extremely reliable Dispel Magic counters what a melee character has most trouble with: spellcasters. Cavalier is a nice kit too. Haven't tried it though, but it appeals to me.

  • sandmanCCLsandmanCCL Member Posts: 1,389
    Brude said:


    Edit: Interesting that Ajantis doesn't get the same bonus. I just noticed that at level two, right after joining the party, he has the same saving throws as a plain fighter.

    Probably the same reason Montaron, Quayle, Alora, Kagain, Yeslick, etc. all don't have their shorty saving throw bonuses upon joining. I'd test it out if I had the time, but I'm willing to bet that's an auto-correcting problem upon level up.

    BrudeRAM021
  • awin123awin123 Member Posts: 55
    Fighter/cleric is better IMO. The only thing paladins really have going for them is the Inquisitor kit and ability to use bladed weapons.

    Bladed weapons are just preference and while the holy avenger is powerful, being an Inquisitor takes care of having dispels and the extra damage is just extra damage, I prefer doing damage via magic personally. Also, the paladin only weapons are only available in BG2.

    As far as BG1 is concerned Paladins are inferior is almost every single way to fighter/clerics. I suppose in the end it's just a matter of preference but you cannot deny that fighter/cleric is much more flexible in terms of alignment, stronghold, spellcasting, etc.

    RAM021
  • AHFAHF Member Posts: 1,376
    awin123 said:

    Fighter/cleric is better IMO. The only thing paladins really have going for them is the Inquisitor kit and ability to use bladed weapons.

    The HLAs are a big factor later in the game for me. 10 attacks per round with Carsomyr is deadly.

    You know, I just have to say this. I think people vastly underestimate the single classed (kitted or no) Cleric. Let me explain:

    (This is NOT for solo).

    The higher casting levels a single classed cleric get are actually extremely handy and make it far easier to manage buffing. Also, if we are comparing the fighter/cleric to a single cleric, most people will point out the lack of specialization and lowered thac0 as the main reason single classed clerics are inferior. This, of course, is absolutely true.

    BUT

    Who cares? You have a party to smash stuff with and when things REALLY matter (big fights against mages, dragons, liches, etc) you are going to buff the heck out of yourself anyway. At that point you become a truly arse-kicking machine regardless of multi-classed or not. WITH the benefit of being able to turn undead like a boss (I love turn undead. It's my buddy). I am also a big fan of not waiting. I like having spells available to me quickly and not waiting until mid way through SoA (or even ToB for some builds! Absurd) to get my goodies.

    All that is WITHOUT taking kits. If you put kits into the equation, the flavor they bring makes things even more fun. Lathander gets a really nice +1 to hit, +1 to damage, +1 to all saving throws and 1 extra attack per round. Once you get higher levels, the duration starts being plenty good enough and (erroneously, I understand) it stacks with itself. Pretty darn cool.

    Helm also has some nice benefits (though not as nice as lathander). The true sight makes it so no one else has to memorize it, and the sword (while not very useful) is at least handy for dispatching foes that need highly magical items to hit.

    Lastly, let me also say that I know this thread was about PALADIN vs fighter/cleric. But I think even the cleric by itself is a very fun and formidable foe.

    The dual classed fighter kit -> cleric gives you the most of the best of both worlds ala Anomen (without the personality).

  • chickenhedchickenhed Member Posts: 208
    Dualed to fighter to cleric I agree completely. I was referring to Multiclassed. Biggest reason I don't like dualing? No dwarf :)

    sandmanCCLRAM021
  • AHFAHF Member Posts: 1,376

    Dualed to fighter to cleric I agree completely. I was referring to Multiclassed. Biggest reason I don't like dualing? No dwarf :)

    It is nice being able to chunk the undead with a single classed cleric as well. That is the biggest difference to me. Chunking a liche or vampire through turn undead is something you just don't get very much with the multi-class cleric.

    BrudeFenghoangRAM021
  • QuartzQuartz Member Posts: 3,831
    Brude said:

    Edit: Interesting that Ajantis doesn't get the same bonus. I just noticed that at level two, right after joining the party, he has the same saving throws as a plain fighter.

    It will fix upon level up. The characters in BG1 are LOADED with mistakes like this.

    RAM021
  • Awong124Awong124 Member Posts: 2,643
    I don't think it's been mentioned yet, but Fighter/Clerics also don't have to be Lawful Good.

    BrudesandmanCCLRAM021
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