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Cleric-less Run

So I've been debating yet another restart (high-functioning altaholic here) and I've been particularly interested in trying to use a number of mod NPCs for the next run. However, it's looking like the team I would use wouldn't have room for a cleric or druid once all is said and done. This of course means no Bless or Chant, no Iron Skin or Defensive Harmony, No Protection From Evil 10' Radius... Basically all of the things that we love about those classes would be gone. We'd have plenty of front-line combatants and arcane casters, but no divine spells.

This has made me curious. Has anyone here tried a playthrough without having either a Cleric or a Druid on their team? If so, what kind of adjustments did you have to make to accommodate this play-style? On a scale of 1 to Kick in the Balls, how unpleasant would such a run be?

Also, bear in mind that I am talking about a full-party run of the game in regard to this question. I know that solo and low party-count runs have different dynamics that may accommodate for this.



  • FrancoisFrancois Member Posts: 452
    I think it would not be much more difficult, unless you are doing a no-reload.

    I don't like to spend time buffing-up and I never actually use chant or bless. Prot from Evil 10' is nice but most of the time I don't even bother. Remove fear and true sight are a must but are also wizard spells.

    My favorite features of clerics are chaotic command, turn undead and negative energy protection/restoration. All these are great but not necessary if you have some barbarian (immune to level drain when enraged; this is also true for Minsc's rage). Restoration, I don't usually memorize it anyway and only use it after a mission.

  • dunbardunbar Member Posts: 1,600
    (As already mentioned) Chaotic Commands and Negative Plane Protection are the spells I'd miss the most but I'd probably try to get around that by using a berserker and a blackguard. For everything else, Invisibility/Mass Invisibility plus that greatly underappreciated spell Running Away.
    I would also try to avoid situations where I'm forced to have the whole party in play, so that it becomes more of a 'solo run with back-up'.
    Only fun for masochists though.

  • Mush_MushMush_Mush Member Posts: 476
    You can get by fairly easily without a cleric you just have to rely more on potions and try not to get level drained.

  • GallowglassGallowglass Member Posts: 3,356
    dunbar said:

    ... I'd probably try to get around that by using a berserker and a blackguard.

    The OP may not have that option, though. This is for an unspecified-but-fixed team of mod NPCs, so there may not be any berserkers or blackguards included.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,198
    For the unmodded game, clerics are not needed in any way. Nor does missing them make things particularly difficult. I had a considerable period of time where I never ran with either cleric OR thief in my parties, preferring to simply shoot first and not ask questions later.

    Once mods come into it, things change a bit. Depending on your setup, you may need more defenses, and Clerics do excel in that. Also, if you remove, say, Improved Haste being so ridiculously good (if you e.g. use the Spell Revisions mod) then +APR offhands, which clerics can't use, also drop in value, and clerics in turn increase in relative usefulness.

    With a full-difficulty setup of LoB + SCS + IR/SR, I'm liking clerics a lot again. Going without one would probably pose a significant difficulty increase in that setup. But in the unmodded vanilla game, you can probably drop any class/role at will and still do quite fine. In fact, you may even learn a thing or two if you're forced to deal with certain things (like level drains) without the usual toolkit.

  • lunarlunar Member Posts: 3,430
    edited November 2016
    In vanilla, clerics are not even needed. Healing potions are everywhere, restoration scrolls can be used by anyone, and rod of resurrection which also can be used by anyone is easy to get. At high levels a mage can call in a Planetar buddy that is 10x better than a cleric in every situation. Poor cleric's only schtick is turning undead, but any undead you can blast by turning is easy to kill in other ways for the party, as well. Only if a cleric is level 30+ or so that he can turn liches away which can actually help.

    Though druids have some use, insect plague and fire elementals are strong and decisive spells, much better than cleric IMHO.

  • lroumenlroumen Member Posts: 2,349
    I always miss remove paralysis the most.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,678
    lunar said:

    At high levels a mage can call in a Planetar buddy that is 10x better than a cleric in every situation.

    Depending on party composition it can take a long time to have a mage capable to summon a Planetar, and even if he is the strongest summon of the game I am not convinced that is so better than a cleric, even if is a better mlee fighter than most of the clerics.
    I don't have much experience of battles between my clerics against planetars in vanilla, but with modded game I had Viconia kicking the but of a fallen deva more than one time as often I like to reload and solo the hard battles with each NPC . And my Aerie usually is much better than a planetar way before my single class mage or sorcerer can gate him. I had more than one planetar, turned hostile because was hit by a damaging AoE spell, attacking her, she won almost every time fast and with almost no damage. I am sure that equipment is a big part of the reason. I really appreciate planetars, who doesn't? But a mage has not infinite lev9 slots, and wasting lev9 spells because you need one or few clerical spells of much lower level for a battle is not ideal. Also if the clerical spell is needed in the battle, but it was not planned, to cast summon planetar and wait that the celestial cast the spell is not the best way. A cleric lasts all day long, a planetar 4 rounds + 1 round/level.

    I had many runs without clerics and also runs without divine casters at all, in vanilla and in modded game, There is almost no setting that can't be beat without each of the game classes, but imo the real problem is to beat the game without arcane casters, divine magic is really useful, but usually there is some way to solve each problem without it, using the appropriate items or tactics.
    And maybe I have this opinion because in my style arcane casting has a big part. Like I think that @lunar's opinion about druidic magic being better than clerical one is due to his own play style, the function of the druidic spells (ie insect ones as antimage) can be replaced same or better the function of clerical one can be replaced. The only thing that I really miss in the many runs without druid that I make is summon elemental prince, because the prince can co exist with a planetar or a deva, that can not be replaced in any way that I know.

  • RelSundanRelSundan Member Posts: 918
    Don't overthink it, just go. Challenges equals fun.

  • ARKdeEREHARKdeEREH Member Posts: 531
    edited November 2016
    The very first time I played Baldur's Gate (in 1998 when it first came out) I didn't understand the usefulness of spells, so I played with just a fighter as my PC and Imoen and Minsc as NPCs. It felt like I played it for a long time, but I spent most of that time on the run from the Flaming Fist and had to reload frequently after getting annihilated by gibberlings and so forth. I never made it into the actual city of Baldur's Gate (not even close!), which of course was also due in large part to a general ignorance about how to play the game since it was my first time and not exclusively because I had to travel huge distances in order to heal myself from both major and minor injuries. Nevertheless, I don't think I ever played without a cleric in my party since then (in any of the Baldur's Gate games), at least not for any significant length of time.

    I did try making a custom party of six paladins in BG2 once, but then I did something that caused them to all fall at the same time within the 1st chapter, so I kind of lost interest in it after that and didn't play any further.

  • NuinNuin Member Posts: 447
    edited November 2016
    I could live without a cleric or druid, it would be inconvenient (considering a 6-person party) but it can be done. You'll just need to play more conservatively and know the limits of your team.
    Oh, and bring a lot of people who can cast Mirror Image/Stoneskin/Protection from Magical Weapons. It's one thing to employ a bit more micromanagement to make up for a lack of healing/buffs, it's a completely different story when you can't even leave your NPCs alone for more than a few seconds because they lack reliable defensive skills. Unless you're fine with excessive resting, I suppose.

    The one class that I personally would refuse to play without is the thief. The sheer amount of early/mid game XP from locks/traps that I would have give up to do this, along with the potential benefits of pickpockets/stealing (even without abuse) would drive my inner powergamer nuts.

  • DanacmDanacm Member Posts: 876
    edited November 2016
    Because you can win even solo any runs, dont need cleric, but i think it can be vital part of a party to have one. Personally i like heal, harm, call woodland beings, chaotic commands, aerial servants etc.

    Actually a wizard less run is hardee but doable.

    Post edited by Danacm on
  • Abi_DalzimAbi_Dalzim Member Posts: 1,410
    I run without any spellcasters (maybe excepting Rangers/Paladins) periodically. Unmodded, it's not so bad. For clerics specifically, I recommend pickpocketing Ribald's Ring of Regeneration as soon as you can. Also, since Clerics' most useful spells tend to be ones that protect against status effects, you can use a berserker to compensate for their absence. I don't think there's too much else you need to compensate for, really.

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