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BGII EE - Picking a Class

I know these get posted all the time and of course the answer is obvious; Play what you want.

But it gets more complicated when you want to play everything >_<

So here's my situation. I'm hovering between Kensai 9 . Mage (I know you should wiat until 13 but thats almost the whole game of never seeing your ACTUAL combo/idea come to light. How bad is it really to pull the trigger at 9 over 13?)

I'm also thinking about the Blade. I like getting up in it and fighting but I like cool abilities too. Not too much a fan of fire and forget types like straight up fighter anymore. How many attacks do they get per round and are they only SUPER good at melee when "dancing"? (they dont get to remove traps by any chance do they?)

And then we have Swashbuckler or Shadowdancer. I HATE having to take a thief I don't want into my party and this is something I like the idea of a lot sometimes. I can play point man and do all the heavy lifting. I like the fighter/thief feel of the swash but lack of backstab does suck a bit and Shadowdancer gets HiPS (is this still really good or did it get changed). Then again with BG2, how much is True Sight being cast? Enough to make it moot?


Anyway, thoughts on classes are welcome and helpful. Also, good weapon choices these days for each as it's been awhile for me. Blackrazor is my favorite sword probably but since I'll be a good guy, that's a thing.

Comments

  • nanonano Member Posts: 1,632
    Kensai 9 is the popular choice, and for good reason. Unless you're hardcore powergaming there's no reason to do 13. That extra half attack isn't gonna win you any fights you weren't winning already.

    Blades don't get any extra attacks per round outside of their spin. I've heard you can stack it with a potion of speed. You can also put a +attacks weapons in your offhand or main hand for more attacks. Outside of that, expect them to have the combat ability of a thief (but with spells).

    HiPS got changed in 1.2 and has a cooldown now, so don't expect to rehide every time you attack. The cloak of non-detection will counter True Sight if you hide via Hide in Shadows. At least, it did in the non-EE version. Swashbuckler is okay but I like my thieves multiclassed and I'd probably take a fighter/thief instead.

    Sounds like you want a melee character with some bonus abilities, yeah? A lot of people love the Blade so I'd recommend going with that.

  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    nano said:

    Kensai 9 is the popular choice, and for good reason. Unless you're hardcore powergaming there's no reason to do 13. That extra half attack isn't gonna win you any fights you weren't winning already.

    Blades don't get any extra attacks per round outside of their spin. I've heard you can stack it with a potion of speed. You can also put a +attacks weapons in your offhand or main hand for more attacks. Outside of that, expect them to have the combat ability of a thief (but with spells).

    HiPS got changed in 1.2 and has a cooldown now, so don't expect to rehide every time you attack. The cloak of non-detection will counter True Sight if you hide via Hide in Shadows. At least, it did in the non-EE version. Swashbuckler is okay but I like my thieves multiclassed and I'd probably take a fighter/thief instead.

    Sounds like you want a melee character with some bonus abilities, yeah? A lot of people love the Blade so I'd recommend going with that.

    Basically, yes. I like having option and even thought monk for a bit but I like actual spells just to have something else to do sometimes. Plus, I like knowing end game (especially if I take him into ToB) that he'll be fine and not completely screwed which is why Kensai/Mage sounded good too.

    Doesn't solve my problem with having to take some thief I hate along with me but oh well ...

    I guess over Swash I could consider Kensai > Thief instead but I'd miss some of the flashy spells which is nice. Sorry, but fireball is just fun sometimes.

  • nanonano Member Posts: 1,632
    I wouldn't worry too much about endgame. Even regular NPCs like pure fighter Mazzy work just fine in ToB.

  • JumbikJumbik Member Posts: 19
  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    nano said:

    F/M/T then? :D

    Would be lovely but that almost sounds too split and his AC is probably terrible :(

  • nanonano Member Posts: 1,632
    He's a fighter and can wear full plate after casting his buffs, how much AC do you want?

    There's no perfect class that has everything. Maybe you should take another look at your requirements.

  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    Blade or Kensai/Mage is looking good. I just REALLY hate all the traps/unlocks but such is life. And I suppose he can wear full plate ... forgot about being able to manage that after spells.

    Thanks for your input :D I'll be going home soon to roll something up.

    nanojackjack
  • egonegon Member Posts: 81
    Kensai/Thief dualled at level 13 (or lvl 9 if you're impatient). Then take the Use Any Item HLA and you can cast spells using scrolls. ;)

  • ThrasymachusThrasymachus Member Posts: 591
    I personally very much dislike the 'kensage' (kensai dual-classed to mage), as it's too cheesy for my tastes.

    My two favourite classes are the Blade and the Wild Mage, so I'd recommend the Blade if you're looking for an interesting and (somewhat) challenging game.

    Also, Bards have the best stronghold in BG2!

    jackjack
  • kryptixkryptix Member Posts: 741
    If your new, berserker Mage is better than kensai Mage because the immunities help more than 5-10% damage.

    I wouldn't worry about exp though for kensai 13, I'm running a 6 man party right now this time and I already have 4 hlas on my fighter illusionist and I still have half of ust Natha left in the under dark, if I went kensai 13 this time I would have completed the dual either in spell hold or in city of caverns.

    The key to kensai 13 is to run a minimal party to start, without Jaheira or your love interest, but try to keep it to 4 total with the other 3 being people who tolerate being dropped well like Korgan, mazzy, aerie, Nalia, jan.

    Pick 3 you want to go the whole game with and level to 13 hopefully without handing in the major quests.

    As soon as you get to 13, go steal every spell scroll you can find and just sit in the copper coronet or something, boot everyone from your party, and scribe all but 1 or maybe 2 copies of the scrolls. (I always keep one to two copies for imoen).

    Then hand in all of the quests and finish all of the major plot lines while in chapter 3. Bring a couple of scroll cases full of scrolls with you when you go to spell hold, when you get there, have imoen scribe the rest with everyone else booted out and told to wait. That will catch her up and activate your dual if it hasn't already.

    Just stealing from 3 shops in waukeens and the two in the bridge district will take you a long way.

    In the under dark there's lots of scrolls to steal too.

  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    Spent the whole night indecisive after all which sucked.

    As for the Blade, is there any benefits really outside of Defensive Spin that they get that you don't get as a fighter mage? I know offensive spin gives you one extra attack and max damage at a +2 to hit but you get a better chance to hit and a bit more damage constantly from just being a fighter/mage multiclass as an elf, don't you? Like outside of Lore and Pick Pocket ... and the killer Stronghold of course ... what does the Blade do at all different from just being a fighter/mage?

    Kind of the same thing about a Ken-sage over Fighter/Mage ... they seem about the same without having to dual-class and wait to be the fighter mage type.

    And I toyed with some shadowdancer last night but not sure how I'd deal with how slow they kill things but at least the HiPS was very fun to play with and I liked doing all the traps and locks myself. Kensai>thief might be something to look at though.

    At least the problem isn't "I hate everything" Instead ... I just like too much ...

  • CorvinoCorvino Member Posts: 2,269
    Blades also get thief HLAs including Use Any Item, possibly the most brokenly overpowered ability in the game. HLA traps are pretty great too.

    jackjackThrasymachus
  • jackjackjackjack Member Posts: 3,248
  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    Corvino said:

    Blades also get thief HLAs including Use Any Item, possibly the most brokenly overpowered ability in the game. HLA traps are pretty great too.

    How long do you have to go to get HLA's? And what are HLA traps? Like what do they do to make them so awesome? Been awhile for me.

  • kaffekoppenkaffekoppen Member Posts: 377
    edited December 2013
    You get your first HLA at approximately 3 million XP. If you're a multiclass, you get it when you hit a combined XP of 3 million and if you are a dual class it's when your active class hits 3 million.

    HLA traps are just extremely powerful traps. There's a time stop trap (obviously this is awesome), a spike trap (20d6 damage, so yeah it's pretty devastating) and an exploding trap (haven't tried it but it is supposedly not as good as the spike trap).

    Traps also tend not to be affected by a lot of the defenses in the game. For example, I instagibbed one of the most powerful liches in the game with a few normal thief traps. Any other kind of attack and he'd just have his defenses up.

  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    And whats the deal with traps? Can you not set them up in the presence of enemies so you have to know the fight ahead of time and lure them onto it? Or can some people place them in the middle of a fight?

  • ThrasymachusThrasymachus Member Posts: 591
    Kastion said:


    As for the Blade, is there any benefits really outside of Defensive Spin that they get that you don't get as a fighter mage? I know offensive spin gives you one extra attack and max damage at a +2 to hit but you get a better chance to hit and a bit more damage constantly from just being a fighter/mage multiclass as an elf, don't you? Like outside of Lore and Pick Pocket ... and the killer Stronghold of course ... what does the Blade do at all different from just being a fighter/mage?
    ...

    Blades level up much more quickly than fighter/mages (or even straight mages). This means that some of their spells (e.g., magic missile, fireball, etc.) will be more powerful than those of a fighter/mage with the same amount of experience points.

    And their Bard song protects against and removes fear effects.

    jackjack
  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    Well I think I'm convinced to try Blade out and give it a "Whirl". (I regret nothing ...)

    Just have to find a thief I don't hate now for lock picking and such things. Ugh

    ThrasymachusjackjackCorvino
  • CrevsDaakCrevsDaak Member Posts: 7,139
    Mage/thief, you won't get a better choice unless M/C/T.

  • KastionKastion Member Posts: 44
    The problem with Mage/Thief is I LIKE the idea of having the capability of fighting in melee and not just relying on spells and backstab damage. I think i'd go Shadowdancer over Mage/thief

  • SkaffenSkaffen Member Posts: 709
    Kastion said:

    I know these get posted all the time and of course the answer is obvious; Play what you want.

    But it gets more complicated when you want to play everything >_<

    The answer to your dilemma is to think consecutive instead of simultaneous and play everything (or the next part of it at least) in your next run. :)

  • Stasis_SwordStasis_Sword Member Posts: 91
    Kastion said:

    The problem with Mage/Thief is I LIKE the idea of having the capability of fighting in melee and not just relying on spells and backstab damage. I think i'd go Shadowdancer over Mage/thief

    First mage/thief will have the same thaco/attacks as a shadow dancer, but with awesome buffs.

    The question is what do you really want to do?
    Be a melee king with buffs - Fighter/Mage, Fighter/Cleric, Fighter/Druid, Ranger/Cleric
    Traps, backstab and stealth with a kick - Thief/Mage, Fighter/Thief
    Magic Incarnate - Sorcerer, Mages, Cleric/Mage
    Click and Destroy - Fighter (and kits), Paladins (and kits), Rangers (and kits)
    Style points - Druid (and kits), Bard (and kits)

    FinneousPJ
  • BayazBayaz Member Posts: 22
    edited January 2014

    Kastion said:


    And their Bard song protects against and removes fear effects.




    No, it doesn't. Blades bard song doesn't improve after level 1. They however can take enhanced bardsong HLA which is really good.

    I wouldn't recommend a blade as your mainchar since a particular NPC is all the Blade you need, that happens to break the rules and works for an evil or good party.

  • AnaximanderAnaximander Member Posts: 191
    edited January 2014
    While perhaps implausible, the berserker 9/mage X dual class can use the improved gauntlets of weapon specialization and still get 10apr with improved haste. But 9/2 vs 5 apr is just quibbling, and the kensai avatars are hot with katanas and wakazashi's etc lol...

  • ThrasymachusThrasymachus Member Posts: 591
    edited January 2014
    Bayaz said:


    No, it doesn't. Blades bard song doesn't improve after level 1. They however can take enhanced bardsong HLA which is really good.

    Um, yes, the Blade song does remove fear effects and protect against them.

    It does this starting at level 1. So the fact that the song does not improve after level 1 is irrelevant.

    Not only do I know this from first-hand experience (I've played a Blade through BGEE, and am playing one now through BG2EE), but it clearly states this in the BGEE Manual 2 (see p. 42) and the BG2EE Manual 2 (see p. 43).

  • BayazBayaz Member Posts: 22
    Heh, yeah sorry. It's been so long since I played without Rogue Rebalancing I had forgot.

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