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Old 02-21-2011, 09:56 AM   #2
Breakout Champion Hexxagon Champion
Join Date: May 27, 2002
Location: Boulder, CO
Age: 41
Posts: 544
Default Re: Starting Over: Some Buld Questions, etc.

On the PC, having either 'No follower auto-level' or 'Respec' mods are nice to take more control over the NPC builds. With no auto-level, companions start at the correct level, but have not invested any of their stat or skill points, so you can customize them as you wish. The Respec mod adds the ability to start over with all points unassigned and re-do your leveling if you think you made a mistake.

*Regular arrows are not buyable in game, characters are assumed to have an unlimited supply, so they will keep firing with nothing in the arrow slot.

Alistair: Consider pumping dex more, at least at first. If you are going the shield skills route, they require min. dex to learn, and you want to get them quickly. Key skills are Taunt to draw aggro, along with defensive stances and shield bash type skills to knock down enemies. As a tank, his role is to hold the attention of the enemies (wearing the heaviest armor and using taunt help with this), not necessarily to do the most damage. Since he should be the target of the majority of melee attacks, having high armor is crucial, and high dex helps with dodging attacks.

Leliana: Dex will up her bow damage, and is the required stat for bow skills. Cunning helps with stealing, lockpicking, and makes bard songs more effective. One consideration for stat distribution is that lockpicking works as Cunning + 10 per level of lockpicking skill. The most you need for the toughest chest is 70. So if you plan to get all four levels of lockpick, 30 Cunning is enough. If you'd rather save some of the skill points for other things, just add 10 Cunning for each level you're missing (+Cunning gear also helps with lockpicking).

Wynne: I'm a fan of Crowd Control spells. Not so much friendly fire spells like Cone of Cold (which I use if my PC is a mage, but never let NPCs use via Tactics). There are some nice party friendly ones though. The Paralyze line is nice, with both Paralyze and Mass Paralyze. Sleep is another good one, disables enemies over a wide area without affecting the party. Just be careful not to do area damage right after (like Scattershot from Leliana), or they all wake up.

I set up Wynne's tactics like this:
Self-->Target of melee attack, Mind Blast (even when enemy resists the stun, it resets the threat level on that enemy, so they likely retarget on Alistair due to his high armor rating)
Self-->HP<25, drink health potion
Ally-->HP<75 Heal
Ally-->HP <50 Group Heal (you can also save group heal for manual use)
Enemy-->Using magic attack, Paralyze (or Glyph of Paralysis)
Enemy-->Clustered, Mass Paralysis (or Sleep)
Enemy-->Asleep, Horror (if I'm using sleep)

Another mod I like is 'Advanced Tactics'. It adds lots of new triggers (HP/MP levels every 10% instead of 25%) and conditions (favorite is enemy frozen/petrified--I can finally have tactics set up to take advantage of shattering frozen enemies). There are also mods to give all characters lots more tactics slots. Could be slightly unbalancing since you don't have to use Talent points for tactics anymore, but I use it to try to minimize switching character and running closer to real time just using the PC.
"Many are my names in many countries. Mithrandir among the Elves, Tharkun to the Dwarves; Olorin I was in my youth in the West that is forgotten, in the South Incanus, in the North Gandalf; to the East I go not"

--The Two Towers
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