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Sorcerer Level 1 Spell Choices

I know I've been asking a lot of new questions, but this is the last one lol. When I created my main character who'se a sorcerer, I chose the spells Chromatic orb, and armor as my level one spells. I really think I should have gone with sleep and magic missle. Would this warrent a restart, coupled with the fact my wisdom and charisma aren't as high as I want?


  • RVNSRVNS Member Posts: 279
    I don't think that is necessary, personally. I find that those are solid choices and you will get a wider selection as well soon enough. Sleep is a strong choice but chromatic orb is underrated at early levels and a solid choice to go with. Blind is also a fantastic choice. In the end I say that personal play style is what determines spell choices. If you are unhappy or dissatisfied with your play through I suggest a reroll with a character you are comfortable with. These are just my thoughts though, stats and spells are not the end all be all of a play through.

  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 736
    Nothing wrong with asking questions. Most of us have learned a ton on these forums. Also, it's just darn fun to talk about Baldur's Gate.

    As for your character: you'll find there are so many ways to play the game (which is one of the reasons it's so addictive). There's no question that some character builds (including spell choices) are more optimal than others - but you don't need an optimal build to win. IMHO, optimization is for subsequent playthroughs and sort of becomes an end in and of itself. I would recommend playing the game once or twice without reading anything about it first, just so you can enjoy the wonder of it without spoilers.

    That said, sorcerer is an unforgiving class because you can't change your spells once you've picked them, and while optimization isn't necessary to beat the game, there are some spells which really aren't that useful. On the other hand, mages can change their spell selection daily, so a bad spell pick isn't the end of the world. You might think about playing some kind of mage until you get to know the spells better. Of course, if you're really dying to play a sorcerer, go for it. The main thing is to have fun. :)

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 4,984
    you will eventually be able to have up to 5 level 1 spells known ( although that might not be until bg2, don't remember )

    one thing to note on spell selection is spells that cap out and don't improve pass a certain point, those are ones that you want to watch out for

    for example:

    level 1 arcane spell: sleep

    this spell is actually quite amazing in BG1 for the most part, even all the way up to chapter 5 it's still pretty good, but then after that, it might become basically useless because the sleep spell is based on enemy's HD, and once they hit 5+ they are immune

    so watch out for spells like that, and especially if you plan to import to bg2, monsters/enemies of coarse are going to be a lot more powerful than they are in bg1

    a mini selection of spells that I would choose per level would be this:

    level 1:
    magic missile

    level 2:
    melf's acid arrow
    mirror image

    level 3:
    flame arrow

    level 4:
    emotion: hopelessness

    level 5:
    hold monster

    level 6:
    chain lightning
    protection from magical weapons

    level 7:
    mass invisibility
    finger of death

    level 8:
    abidalzim's horrid wilting

    level 9:
    chain contingency

    the above list can help if you need ideas for spells of a particular level

  • clovis_sangrailclovis_sangrail Member Posts: 4
    If you start with Sleep and Magic Missile, you'll find an Armor scroll in Candekeep. This are my go to spells for baby mages.

    As for starting over, now that you better know what you are doing, you might want to go ahead and do that. You can get better stats and make your starting spells whatever you want, and you can play things differently if you want.

    Or you can stay with the game you started.

    Or you can do both -- Save your current game, then start over and pick the best one.

    I start over lots, but that's because I enjoy making new and different characters. I currently have a dwarven defender and a figther/illusionist going in two games on PC, and another character on my tablet.

    Just do whatever feels the most fun.


  • TaylorrrTaylorrr Member Posts: 28
    Yeah I'm probably gonna go ahead and restart, knowing what I know now. And it's cool your playing on a tablet, I'm playing mine on my android and people have said the mobile versions aren't optimal but its actually really convenient.

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 5,547
    Shield is better than Armour for a sorcerer. It doesn't last as long but it's AC4 is better and it has a secondary affect making you immune to magic missile which is useful long after the AC6 from Armour is not helpful.

  • NeverusedNeverused Member Posts: 773
    edited August 2017
    I would recommend playing as a Mage over a Sorceror as a first playthrough: it has an incredibly high ceiling and an incredibly low floor. Several bad spell picks can make your main character pretty useless, and it's not easy to remedy that without using a save editor or something. But with a mage, a few bad spells means you have to rest and swap out your spells, and there's not many time critical quests.

    Post edited by Neverused on
  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,716
    Every time you play as a Sorcerer you need to ask yourself two questions:

    1) Does this spell scale well with level?

    2) Does it get a better version in the future?

    If the answers are Yes and No respectively, pick that spell.

    Magic Missile is a must for me. I never bother with Armor: Protection From Magical Weapons are there for it and Bracers of AC 6 are not that difficult to obtain in BGEE.

    Sleep is a nice spell in BGEE, but Emotion: Hopelessness is way better.

  • PokotaPokota Member Posts: 595
    edited August 2017
    I prefer Chromatic Orb over Magic Missile and Minor Drain for my offensive spell choice because it's save-or-else (even at low levels the effects can turn the tide of battle) and they're all CT 1. Also I don't believe Shield blocks Chromatic Orb, so that's a thing to consider if enemy casters have anything resembling meaningful AI. Magic Missile is still more useful as a spell disrupting measure (Chromatic Orb can be negated entirely with good saves) but you get a 10-charge wand for basically free at the start of chapter 1 so there's no need to use a selection on it at level 1.

    Shield is actually a solid defensive choice if you're going solo since it blocks Magic Missiles (and unmodded mage AI relies on MM almost exclusively for a while) and dramatically improves your AC against ranged weapons. If you don't mind burning a spell slot on it, Protection from Petrification is another solid choice in BG1 only since it almost trivializes Mutamin's Garden and eases part of Chapter 6 (though admittedly I wouldn't take it at level 1). Grease is a weaker version of Web but I believe it still affects demigiants? I'm fairly certain Web doesn't affect demigiants.

    I would avoid Sleep or Armor at level 1 since scrolls for those spells are easy enough to come by and you can still cast from scrolls as long as you have at least INT 9. I don't know if anyone actually uses Infravision but I would give the same caution there - scrolls for Infravision are easy enough to come by that you should never need to learn it.

    Virtually all the other level 1 spells are useful on an adventure but are burdensome as level 1 sorceror selections.

  • luskanluskan Member Posts: 269
    Did they change sleep back so that the targets stays asleep after you hit them with a weapon? If so, sleep is a great pick for BG1. If not, stick with the wand.

    Personally I'd go with Blindness. Its single target but it lasts a long time and lets you hit with your ranged weapon of choice easily.

  • jsavingjsaving Member Posts: 689
    Yes, they changed sleep back to the way it originally worked. If you hit someone with a weapon, they remain sleeping for the duration of a spell (to the great benefit of BG1's many ankheg farmers).

    The main question to ask with a BG1 sorcerer is whether you're going to take the character into SoD/BG2 and, if so, whether it will grate on you to be carrying spells that become useless toward the end of BG1 and remain dead weight throughout SoD/BG2. If you're doing a BG1-only run, it is a no-brainer to take sleep as your go-to spell along with shield/armor and perhaps blindness as well. If on the other hand your goal is to have a completely optimized BG2 character, it would be better to stick with spells like chromatic orb and magic missile that remain useful throughout your adventuring career.

  • TaylorrrTaylorrr Member Posts: 28
    I do plan on importing this character into baldurs gate 2. I've already restarted since this post, and chose sleep and magic missile as my starting spells. I've read differing opinions on chromatic orb, that by the time it has actual benefits other spells have already surpassed it.

  • luskanluskan Member Posts: 269
    By the time you get part way into BG2, about the only level one spell you'll be casting consistently is Magic Missile. So as long as you're picking spells that are powerful in BG1 and will help you make it to BG2, don't worry about early spell picks becoming obsolete. Examples would be Sleep, Shield, Invisibility, and Web.

    Chromatic Orb I like as my level 5 (stuns target) or level 7 (paralyzes target) pick. Plus from level 10 it's acid damage against trolls in BG2. Any instant kills from it are a bonus.

  • TaylorrrTaylorrr Member Posts: 28
    That's a relief that I'm not totally screwed having picked sleep. What would you suggest my level 3 spell pick be, if not chromatic orb?

  • luskanluskan Member Posts: 269
    Shield. It helps your AC vs archers and stops Magic Missiles.

  • TaylorrrTaylorrr Member Posts: 28
    But what use is shield if my sorcerer is never in the front lines? :p

  • PokotaPokota Member Posts: 595
    Taylorrr said:

    But what use is shield if my sorcerer is never in the front lines? :p

    You don't have to be in the front lines to get shot up by bandit archers

  • TaylorrrTaylorrr Member Posts: 28
    So shield would be an optimal pick?

  • Mush_MushMush_Mush Member Posts: 476
    Shield is a solid pick but not essential there are alternatives there's even a shield amulet that's cheap among other things; bracers, scrolls, robe of arch magi etc. but still...decent pick.

    The spells that I'd say are all good choices:

    Blindness - very powerful/useful disabling spell
    Chromatic Orb - not great early but gets very good at higher levels
    Identify - just saves you hassle and is always useful there are alternatives though
    Magic Missile - Good ole MM, decent damage
    Protection from Evil +2 AC vs 90% of the game and immunity to summoned demons
    Spook - good interupt/disabling spell, tough to save against
    Shield - good AC and immunity to MM

    Less solid but acceptable:
    Burning Hands- because fire from your fingertips? finishes trolls off nicely
    Larlochs Minor Drain - healing
    Friends - shopping assistant but there are scrolls everywhere so, meh
    Armour - lasts 9hrs which is nice but there are better ways to get good AC

  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 736
    Taylorrr said:

    That's a relief that I'm not totally screwed having picked sleep. What would you suggest my level 3 spell pick be, if not chromatic orb?

    No worries: sleep is a great spell. It takes care of swaths of enemies in BG1 and even some trash mobs in BG2. Yes, later spells like Emotion: Hopelessness are better, but what are you going to use until then? It's a long wait to level 8 to get level 4 spells, so go ahead and use sleep. It's always my first pick. Remember also that some level 1 spells you may never use once you get to BG2 - and that's okay. Spook and Chromatic Orb are useful later on, but you don't need them as early level 1 spell picks. Personally, the only level one spells I care about and pick (in this order) are: sleep; identify; magic missile; blindness; spook; and chromatic orb.

  • Mush_MushMush_Mush Member Posts: 476
    There are sleep wands though which I find more than enough by themselves, also, many of the lesser enemies drop lvl 1 scrolls so you can expect to pick up a few sleep scrolls on your travels.

  • DreadKhanDreadKhan Member Posts: 3,859
    For the record, Web is a very, very strong 2nd level spell. Its big fault is spiders are immune (it's also not party friendly), but that -2 on the save means its more likely to work, ~10% more likely, and it holds those that fail, so you can pelt with ranged.

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