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How do you "roll" your protagonist?

How long do you typically spend rolling stats for your protagonist? Are you one of the rare few that takes the first role and goes with it? Are your characters much stronger than the dice average of 63 points? Oddly, even Quayle, at 67 points, is above average. Are they comparable to your fellow Bhaalspawn, Imoen's 87 points? Perhaps you're one of many that feel your protagonist should be much stronger than any NPC you pick up, so you'd scoff at Dorn's 90 points? Just curious how most people build their protagonists.

Years ago I came across Frabjous' autoroller in the Bioware forums and started using that. I'd normally take the best of 10,000 rolls, normally 96+ points. Using this method, I'd be able to get eighteens in the most important stats. I now use the autoroller found in the mod section, but it's started feeling overpowered. I'd like to hear from others' experiences that have played average or even weak protagonists.


  • MacHurtoMacHurto Member Posts: 731
  • Dice42Dice42 Member Posts: 55
    I usually aimed for above average. I wanted enough points to be good in my class without having pitiful values in other stats. If I got a high powered roll i would certainty use it, but i wouldnt wait for one

  • LemernisLemernis Member, Moderator Posts: 4,280
    edited April 2014
    I don't spend very long at it--usually around half a minute or even less. In my experience the difference isn't really felt all that much if the character doesn't have spectacular ability scores. It's great to have an 18 or two in there (or 18/xx or 19, if possible), of course. That's usually not hard to achieve in a relatively few number of rolls. But I've found that if there are no 18s the character still performs just fine. In other words, no 18s isn't a deal-breaker for me. Although at least one max score certainly seems warranted for a Bhaalspawn, if not more.

    Oh, and I think the lowest ability score I have ever given a character is an 8, and I think that was for Cha because I hoped to see the following:

    The fight between Khalid and Jaheira versus Xzar and Montaron, which is more likely to trigger if the party leader has low Cha.

    9-10 is average, so I'll won't give less than that for any ability unless there's a RP and/or strategy concept behind it.

    Post edited by Lemernis on
  • Fina92Fina92 Member Posts: 270
    I NEVER go below 90p for my bhaalspawn. He/She is a half-god after all...

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    I usually go for 80+, but I really enjoyed the 75 roll (minimum) challenge. Stat points aren't that important for most char builds.

  • CorvinoCorvino Member Posts: 2,269
    The lowest roll I'll usually accept is an 81 for a pure thief or 83 for a fighter/thief character. That's enough to get 18/18/(15 or 17) in physical stats without dumping mental ones. You can actually optimise a pure archer thief pretty well with a mere 73 points as long as you're content to be a support character.

    I'm aware that 3/3/3/3/3/3 sorcerers exist but they're a slightly masochistic "look how great I am" exercise, usually.

  • vyvexthornevyvexthorne Member Posts: 58
    edited April 2014
    I usually just use ArtMoney to give them the stats I want. Seems so silly to roll and roll and roll just waiting to get the score you want. I like the point buy system better than the roll system I guess. That way I can put the points where they need to be. Of course the point buy system has it's drawbacks too. Making a good paladin is really frustrating with the point buy system. At least with the roll system you actually did have a possibility of getting some really awesome stats.

    I don't go overboard with it.. (I don't think.) For instance my latest elf rogue for BG was 14,19,14,16,10,10. Scores I probably could have rolled if I did it a few times.. I just don't want to do it.

    Edit: Oops, I lied.. I gave her a charisma of 12 for some reason.. I guess I wanted her to be pretty but not too pretty.

  • LemernisLemernis Member, Moderator Posts: 4,280
    From a RP standpoint all 3s is basically someone in a coma, lol.

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    edited April 2014
    @Lemernis I think coma is actually defined in some source as Int 0.

    Post edited by FinneousPJ on
  • BlackravenBlackraven Member Posts: 3,283
    I've used various methods, ranging from best of 10 to endless rolls for very good stats. I don't like going below 10 on any stat, so if I accept a lower roll, this means that one or more of the prime stats won't be maxed.
    In my ultimate no-reload challenges I tend to go for higher rolls, simply for better survivability. My charnames tend to die even with good stats, so I don't feel the need yet to make my challegenges even more challenging ;)

  • LemernisLemernis Member, Moderator Posts: 4,280
    edited April 2014

    @Lemernis I think coma is actually defined in some source as Wis 0.

    Okay, interesting to know. Well we're still talking about someone in a nearly vegetative or otherwise horrendously impaired condition (organically), in any case. Someone severely brain damaged for example. With Int of 3, I shouldn't think the person would be verbal.

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    edited April 2014
  • atcDaveatcDave Member Posts: 1,933
    I don't always do the same thing, but I rarely spend much time on it. I have enjoyed several playthroughs with a character I only allowed a single roll for. I have one cleric going now with a 17 Constitution, and that's his ONLY score above 13. I also have a Paladin with an 19 charisma (Tome of Leadership) and everything else below 15.
    I think mediocre characters like this are a ton of fun.
    Sometimes I roll for a stronger character. It can be fun to see how big a difference it makes to blow through battles as opposed to having to be clever all the time!
    My other favorite thing to do is use EEKeeper to pattern characters after PNP characters I've played. I've played a mix of strong and weak characters in PNP too.

  • jackjackjackjack Member Posts: 3,248
    Jidokwon said:

    How do you "roll" your protagonist?

    Well, I never!

    In all seriousness, for a long time I wasn't satisfied with anything less than an 89, after struggling through my first playthrough with 77 points. But my favorite playthrough ATM is an 81 point Jester.
    My new main guidelines are only one 17, (or 18 if I roll it), and the rest somewhere in between 9-16. For instance:
    Str 9
    Dex 14
    Con 11
    Int 16
    Wis 14
    Cha 17

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,501
    edited April 2014
    I usually give it about five minutes of rerolling when I create a new toon. I'll accept a minimum range of about 82-86, as getting at least one roll in that range is practically guaranteed during the five minutes, and I can usually get one of 90 or above if I'm fast enough with my reflexes.

    I developed a technique where I look at the first digit only, and try to develop my reflexes to stop clicking "reroll" as soon as it changes to 8 or 9, so I can read the second digit. It's not perfect, but it greatly reduces the risk of clicking past a good roll. Even so, I can't go faster than about one click per second. Any faster, and the risk of passing the rare roll becomes unacceptably high.

    I know I could just EE Keeper the character, but there's something kind of fun about playing with the character rolling screen, especially since Beamdog put in the total at the bottom. It's like playing a Vegas slot machine. And, when the high roll comes up and I use the character, he somehow feels more legitimate than if I had used Keeper.

  • Demonoid_LimewireDemonoid_Limewire Member Posts: 424
    I always spend a VERY, LONG, time, in rerolling, a.k.a. trying to get the relatively best stats possible. Depending on what class i am creating, i can settle down with anything from 90-93. Besides, very few times you can go over this without cheating or editing. The best roll i ever got was 96, however, and all this time, i got it only twice so far. Rarely enough, i get a fabulous roll after trying for only 2-3 times in a row. Depending on the class and its situation, i either need four 18s and two dumps, or four 18s, a nearly 10 one and a dump, or five 18s and a total dump (like, say, a druid, or a fighter that is going to dual over to druid).

    Rerolling is an entire science in and by itself. I totally despise it that in Icewind Dale 2, the stats are set and always the same amount.

  • RandyMcStudRandyMcStud Member Posts: 71
    My best roll without the auto roller was 99 and actually after only rolling for 20 mins creating a paladin. Unfortunately, it was an SOA character, so didnt benefit from the tomes, and additionally I forgot to change the difficulty from core so it had gimped health :).

    However, in the last week I have been using the auto roller, and after leaving it on for a few hours whilst I was AFK, I have made a few 99 roll characters, both berserkers I intend to dual in SOA. Even with the auto roller, I have never bettered 99. With the auto roller I wouldnt shoot for over 95 as such rolls are exceedingly rare, and if manually, I would never try to get over 93, except perhaps for something like an elven ranger which has exceptionally high minimum stats. Its certainly possible to roll higher than 93, but there are very few classes where it is worthwhile, and if you are lucky enough to roll a 93, dont waste time trying to get higher.

    93 is enough for 5 18s and 1 dump stat. 91 will do for non warriors who dont benefit for constitution over 16. And for many classes you can get away with a lot lower. One thing I would advise is to not let intelligence be lower than 11, as when it comes to mind flayers having lower can be very annoying.

  • elminsterelminster Member, Developer Posts: 16,000
    I roll at least an 85. Perhaps more for multiclass (or future dual class) characters.

  • SojournerSojourner Member Posts: 42
    I've never understood this. If you have a target you want, use EEKeeper and set it that way. Why waste time re-rolling?

    I have no problem with setting your character stats however you want them - use ctl-8 for all that. But I fail to see how re-rolling, with or without an auto-roller, is any different than just going in and setting them to whatever you want.

    Maybe its different for multi-player - but I've been playing this game since it first came out and there was no multi-player then. In fact I'm pretty sure you couldn't re-roll at all back then, which really WAS an exercise in frustration if you got something in the 70's. I'm sorry, but Bhaalspawn really should have better stats than that, LOL!

    So set your stats however you want - but I just don't see why re-rolling is any less acceptable than just selecting reasonable stats and setting things accordingly.

  • illusionillusion Member Posts: 17
    Best of 10 98% of the time. If I have specific stats in mind(say 18/00) then I'll get close and Keeper it how I want it. I won't move points around much unless something is below 10.

  • RewolfRewolf Member Posts: 102
    @Sojourner‌ you could reroll in the original version afaik. Only differance was that in the original you weren't shown what the total outcome of your roll was, so you had to calculate it yourself (and thus spend more time rolling for a good score)

    OT: I used to reroll for max score until I got bored (usually after aan half hour) but nowadays I take a minimum score I want for a character (differs depending on the character) and then roll till I get 3 scores which are equal to that or higher.

  • SojournerSojourner Member Posts: 42
    I seem to recall a very tedious system of rolling, and having to complete the character creation and saving it before attempting a re-roll. I believe it was the "save the best roll" feature that was missing in the earliest versions of the game. Or perhaps a previous D&D based game - it was a long time ago, but I remember the process being a whole lot worse.

  • elminsterelminster Member, Developer Posts: 16,000
    edited April 2014
    The only change I'm aware of from the original is the inclusion of the thing that tells your roll total. I used to play the original (non-totsc) back in the day and I don't remember it not having the save your roll feature.

  • TwaniTwani Member Posts: 640
    Original BG1 had a save your roll.

    Honestly, I usually either just accept my first roll, or CTRL-8 and set my stats however I want them. Depends on how concrete the character is in my mind at the moment. Sometimes I make a story from the stats, in which case first roll is fine, or sometimes I already have the characters stats in mind.

  • meaglothmeagloth Member Posts: 3,806
    Lemernis said:

    @Lemernis I think coma is actually defined in some source as Wis 0.

    Okay, interesting to know. Well we're still talking about someone in a nearly vegetative or otherwise horrendously impaired condition (organically), in any case. Someone severely brain damaged for example. With Int of 3, I shouldn't think the person would be verbal.
    Don't you die when any stat hits 0? I would think a coma would be str, dex, wis, and cha <2, but you could still have con, your immune system amend such still functions, and in a vegetable state, (not coma) you could still have just as much Int as always.

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