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Most Powerful Caster?



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  • ZanathKariashiZanathKariashi Member Posts: 2,867
    If you add shadow keeper'd classes, a Wild Sorcerer is the most powerful possible (and surprisingly easy to do).

  • DarksheerDarksheer Member Posts: 84

    If you add shadow keeper'd classes, a Wild Sorcerer is the most powerful possible (and surprisingly easy to do).

    Weird, I tried that earlier and it failed every time I had to level up as it required me to choose wild mage spells instead of sorcerer spells - which I couldn't as I already knew them all. No denying on the potential power though. :)

  • masterdesbaxtermasterdesbaxter Member Posts: 51
    If you're willing to do your homework, a sorcerer can be absurdly powerful. At least, that has been my experience.

  • TinterTinter Member Posts: 152
    edited January 2013
    Gnome Cleric/ Illusionist in BG1- give up 4 arcane spells, gain 13 Divine spells and ability to use more equipment, fight a little better, better saving throws, more HPs and turn undead. Good deal!

    After BG1: Sorcerer in SOA, Cleric/illusionist is competitive again in TOB.

  • ZanathKariashiZanathKariashi Member Posts: 2,867
    It's not competitive at all in terms of most powerful caster, since it's still bound by the 1 cast per round limit. Yes, it's versatile, but it's not the most powerful. Only a Sorcerer or Wild Mage can even compete for that title. And the Wild Mage is THE most powerful, prior to epic levels, since only they can break the 1 spell per round limit without IA. Once a Sorcerer can get IA, it becomes very close. The sorcerer is more consistent, while the Wild Mage is less so, but potentially MUCH more powerful, depending on surge rolls. Prior to 20, a Wild Mage could potentially deal more damage then an equal xp caster with certain spells if they had a positive CL roll, but between 20-25 they have a 50% chance of being weaker caster level-wise then a sorcerer, after 25 though, their caster level is the same.

    While it is true that C/M get more gear options, they're unnecessary as the best armor is a mage robe, the best staff is a mage staff, and both can use slings (technically Everard's is one of the best ranged due to hitting as +5, adds str, infinite ammo, which would give a high str cleric a possible edge in damage (since they can easily hit 25 str through spells)...though a mage could use the firetooth (dagger) with potentially double the number of attacks, and also getting a str bonus (capping at 24 if evil, 22 if not), and for almost double the base damage of a sling..can't hit +4 only stuff but meh, the extra thac0 is nice, but there's spells that can easily push you into the no miss territory for eitehr). And ultimately irrelevant to a discussion about casters. 10/10 a sorcerer or Wild Mage would kill an equally geared C/M, even if you disallow time stops (since whoever's went off first would win), and due to differences in caster level, the Sorc/WM could easily dispel the C/M's buffs while the other would only have a 1% chance of success, even using their cleric dispel.

  • TinterTinter Member Posts: 152
    edited January 2013
    I was giving the C/M primarily as an answer for BG1 when talking about equipment, when they kick ass and take names, but they for sure warrant consideration endgame as well.

    Wild mage only really counts with either high tolerance for, i.e., where did my money go? or an extra ability of power word: reload being used a lot more than normal.

    C/M is no more bound by the limit than the sorcerer? They just take a little longer to get there but theres nothing preventing them escaping it just like anyone else.

    I was speaking in a party context- where a C/M really shine. If we are soloing the slower progression of a C/M doesn't matter and its just a straight up power question.

    Late game a C/M in a party in single player can do everything a mage can, and gets a load of nice cleric stuff on top- triple implosion is very nice out of a chain contingency, for example. So C/M is better than a mage, and its thus just a question of the good things about a sorc vs lots of cleric spells as to whats better.

    Who is the best to play with in the game is totally different to the irrelevant question of a deathmatch between a player controlled Sorc and C/M (something I don't recall ever doing when, you know, playing the game...), but Improved Invisibility, Spell Immunity: Divination and Spell Immunity: Abjuration would all be a standard loadout for me for that fight, making Dispelling useless- although if we are talking uncapped solo characters, the C/Ms Cleric side will have a higher casting level anyway ;)

  • ZanathKariashiZanathKariashi Member Posts: 2,867
    No they won't...completely uncapped, a single class sorc or WM would would keep an almost 5 lvl caster level buffer, even above the cleric levels, since the xp to level continues to scale, while the cleric be eternally losing half it's xp to it mage half that would be even lower.

    Spell immunities aren't even a consideration since both will expire at the same time if either caster is 20 or over...or if you remove the casting cap, the Sorc/WM will win due to having 4 rounds extra duration. Save level 1, a single class mage/sorc will always have a caster level advantage over a multi-classed C/M...well ok...technically until 4, the C/M can catch up, but Sorc/WM will always hit it first, and after 4, they maintain a slowly growing rift in level.

    And parties don't matter...the original question was, what is the flat out most powerful caster. The Wild Mage wins that part hands down...sure it involves a lot of luck, but in terms of raw power, nothing else can touch that.

    And about the no deathmatch thing....honestly, why haven't you? It's damn good fun, much more entertaining then any other mage battles in the game.

  • TinterTinter Member Posts: 152
    edited January 2013
    You are quite right, I got my sums wrong :)

    The C/I loses a couple of arcane spells and gains a lot of nice divine spells in BG1. There are some really nice divine spells, and longevity and buffs are more important at these lower levels- 14 divine spells of 1-5 do beat 4 arcane spells IMO, so in BG1 I think C/I is the best spellcaster- low levels are great for multiclasses. They certainly beat sorcerers at these levels.

    The opening poster asked about being "the most powerful member of the party", and C/M has a valid claim to that role at TOB levels- its got more of a party emphasis that the nuker sorc, and ability to be slightly more invincible than the basically invincible high level mage has limited utility even in ascension.

    I agree that C/M probably would lose one-on-one to well played a sorc but I wanted it on record that its not due to immediate dispel swaps ;)

    Sure, wild mage is great if its lucky.... or dead if its not... thats like arguing the 1% dispel chance still matters! Luck based victory is not what I consider optimised, though to each their own if you are happy with the increased reload reliance.

    Deathmatch might be fun but I think the OP was asking about in the core game so thats where I'm placing these guys.

  • SeveronSeveron Member Posts: 214
    I find that for the most powerful class and if you have the patient, a gnome Cleric/Illusionist. If you're willing to aim for an exceptional roll, ~95 you can even be viable in non-magical combat when you're out of spells.
    I was ecstatic when I rolled a 100 for my gnome C/I. He will ascend to godhood. Mwhahaha!!!!

  • ZanathKariashiZanathKariashi Member Posts: 2,867
    edited January 2013
    Well the big difference is, once you hit the epic levels, a Wild Mage almost never fails when using Naehl's since they add their class level to roll + Chaos Shield (Improved adds +25 if memory serves, which with a potential 36 caster level removes not only almost all the bad results, it removes most of the neutral ones as well, leaving on the really good ones and the handful of neutral-ish and bad-ish mixed in. While there is a small chance of something going wrong, more then likely you're going to get either a good effect or a LOT of good effects (including restoring all your spell casts). Not to mention the shear number of 9th and 10th level spells you can cast.

  • TinterTinter Member Posts: 152
    Right, but by level 36 Naehls- while obviously still pretty great- isn't an essential thing. And in both getting there- and to an extent while there- you are increasing your reliance on chance and reloading; exactly what I want my powergaming to avoid!

    Essentially, for that style of pure arcane power I'd rather have Sorc running infinite spells (though I don't really find either necessary, except possibly in SCSII-Ascension)- a little more work, maybe, but for me its important things work more consistently. I accept thats a personal call rather than a this-or-that fact, though.

  • moopymoopy Member Posts: 938
    Wild Mages have innate IA?

  • MurkveMurkve Member Posts: 12
    As far as versatility and solo ability go, I would have to count pure class Clerics as deceptively powerful. They get an immense amount of self-buff and defense spells ("Draw Upon Holy Might" anyone?), have passable THAC0, can wear as heavy an armor as you want, while still being able to cast excellent spells. Hold Person, Holy Smite, Sunbeam, Summon Deva, etc.

    Tons of people like to deride the Priest of Helm kit for the Seeking Sword ability, but with a few levels that guy turns into a chainsaw. Buff yourself up, and with DUHM pumping every combat stat above 20 and the Seeking Sword having 3 attacks p/round, you can imagine the destruction. Now slap some haste on him. Bam.

    Granted, Clerics don't come into their own until BGII, they still kick ass in BG.

  • AntonAnton Member, Moderator, Mobile Tester Posts: 513
    Why don't you setup some multiplayer arena and broadcast it on youtube? :D

    - Wild Mage
    - Sorcerer
    - Cleric \ Mage
    - Cleric


  • ArcticArctic Member Posts: 76
    edited January 2013
    The sorcerer , no point , in bg2, you will be brutal without casting anithing else than proyect image, and limited number off spells feel weird when you can learn all lvl 10 spells and have them all memorized ...

    my last game with tob instaled, with full party was in the drow city with planetar/time stop, /improved alacracy / dragon breath/ wish and proyected images ... unstopable...

  • CorvinoCorvino Member Posts: 2,269
    In BG1 the most powerful caster is - a druid? Kind of kidding, but they get 2 level 5 spells at level 10 and a bonus level 5 spell from 21 wisdom. So you can cast 1 Ironskins and 2 insect plagues per day.

    Yup, druid spell selection does suck pretty hard at low levels, but level 4+ it evens out. If you're playing an Avenger you even get a few mage spells to supplement your otherwise sucky level 1-3 selection. I enjoyed the challenge of playing an Avenger in Tutu due to the aforementioned low level suckiness with higher level goodies.

  • NaastriilNaastriil Member Posts: 60
    If we get BG2 added in the future the best class is a Mage. However at low levels and if you are not very familiar with AD&D I suggest you roll an elven archer with high str and dex where you can dominate most fights. Because as a mage you don't make much difference until you hit lvl 5 where you get 3rd level spells. I don't like the sorcerer class as it was added after and was not in the original game.

  • DjimmyDjimmy Member Posts: 749
    edited January 2013
    Elven Fighter/Mage multi-class. It is out of question. You get all HLAs both fighter's and mage's. I don't recommend gnome/illusionist cuz you lose a whole spell school, that being the Necromancy school(Some will argue whether this is a big loss but trust me it is. One example, Death Spell is a necromantic spell and it is the only spell, as far as I am concerned, that instantly kills all summoned creatures in its AOE(no save) What about that?). If you want "ALL THE POWER OF THE UNIVERSE", then you must have this school of magic. Let me point some of the advantages of the F/M.

    1. You have all mage spells except the spells reserved only for wild mage
    2. You get some of the most powerful cleric/druid spells through your Planatar - heal, raise dead, holy word, earthquake(if good)...
    3. Mage class will allow you to open locks better than the maxed thief class(knock)
    4. You can detect traps via spell
    5. You can use mirror image to "disarm" traps. Fighter/mage is less likely to die(more hp) if a trap hits the real caster and not his/her mirror image
    6. You will be able to use wands
    7. You can use all items that are usable by fighter. Equip Answerer +4 and with every successful hit enemy spell resistance is lowered by 15% making your spells potentially deadlier.
    8. Your simulacrum spell will be a machine of destruction, weaker than you, but still a machine of destruction. Cast improved haste on you and your simulacrum, then use the critical strike HLA and everything will get chunked.
    9. You get some of the druid shapeshifts and more via Shapechange spell
    10. You get the fighter's HLA that cannot be dispelled and can still be "cast" even if silenced

  • AgricolaAgricola Member Posts: 21
    edited January 2013
    It sort of depends, if you want to play a Damage oriented caster then wild mage or sorcerer is the way to go. Sorry for the wall of text, but I see a lot of people talking about awesome high level abilities so I'm going to explain some of the awesome low level abilities. Pure mages can use these tactics as well, but they synergize with 1 or more clerics in the party to affect even the highest boss fights.

    A Cleric/Illusionist truly only outshines other mages with proper tactics, but with them you'll be able to laugh at how infantile enemies are. What are proper tactics? examine the first two levels of spells: blind, doom, bless, web, enfeeble, chant, hold person, & silence. A cleric/illusionist can nuke enemy saving throws with doom or chant (occasionally both) in addition to greater malison later on. This means even in BG1 you can instantly take boss enemies out of the fight with blind versus anyone, silence against casters, enfeeblement vs tanks (encumbrance keeps them from moving), and it also helps keep folks webbed if the fight permits the positioning to use web. Additionally once chant, prot from evil & bless have been cast some characters can fairly safely fight inside of a web field (high con shorties) due to very low saving throws. You can do a ton with just these level 1-2 spells.

    In BG1 the level 1 blind spell is only matched by the spell emotion. You can cast it as soon as you start the game, and you can cast it often*. Furthermore, in an enclosed environment you can pull wicked tricks like casting sanctuary then running into a doorway and casting blind at the nearest enemy then backing away. This results in the enemy running to your last known position thereby blocking the doorway for 100 rounds if they failed the saving throw, this allows you to take your time with a sling against the mob behind it. Sanctuary is excellently useful in it's own right; it's essentially a level 1, 1 minute invisibility spell that does not break when you interact with objects.

    Also bear in mind, that even though you'll be slinging a 7d6 (multiclassed) or 9d6 fireball/skulltrap, creatures get a save for half damage; if you've nuked that save with at least a doom spell, then that'll approximately equalize the expected damage output at the cost of a round but with the side benefits of dooming the target.

    Cleric / Illusionist does go through a weak phase during Bg2 because enemy saving throws will improve before you get the higher level spells to deal with it. Especially problematic are creatures with magic defenses, you will want spells to counter them but won't get them until later if you're using a full group without a pure mage. You might be able to somewhat circumvent the problem of saving throws by dual classing one of the humans in your party to Archer (edit: this is not possible without the use of an editor) or maybe bg2 EE will include an archer npc :)

    With regards to the loss of the Necromancy school, in BG1 there aren't really any great necromancy spells except horror, and skulltrap, both of which have more than adequate analogues at their respective levels (web, enfeeble, & fireball). In Bg2 I felt the death spell quickly lost its usefulness and just kept one copy memorized.

    The long and short of it is, a cleric/illusionist really shines when you understand the game mechanics and think with them. I have used both blind and enfeeble to trivially kill some of the most powerful creatures in bg2, let alone BG1 where saving throws are higher.

    *I classify it as greater than emotion hopelessness due to the fact that you can cast it more often forcing more saving throws against bosses.
    **properly using blind: once you see it hit, run away from the enemy and while the enemy is not adjacent to you change your direction, they will not follow the new direction unless they're adjacent to see you change directions.

    tl;dr, doom+blind is awesome, reducing saving throws owns even the strongest enemies, a cleric/illusionist in bg1 shouldn't need more than a couple direct damage spells yet can have them for flavor; bonus: you'll feel awesome dual wielding hammers/maces/flails with 20+ str and two full spellbooks.

    Post edited by Agricola on
  • TyranusTyranus Member Posts: 268
    Edwin still gets more casts/level than all of you! Baeloth memorizes more spells per level than all of you too! Only Neera can be surpassed as a Wild Mage.

    I'm voting Wild Mage as the most powerful caster from start to finish. Sorcerers are my personal favourite, but I respect the power/halarity of the Wild Surge.

  • zur312zur312 Member Posts: 1,358
    in bg2 tob

    i think wild mage has the potential to be the most powerfull (lucky surges) but sorc is the most powerfull and great bonus you don't requeier scrolls so he is even better!
    3rd is edwin or cleric/mage/gnome ;D

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