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Old 08-20-2003, 08:38 PM   #10
Drow Warrior

Join Date: June 13, 2003
Location: Never Never Land
Age: 49
Posts: 267
I wasn't able to go back to a saved game without powercast, however I did go back and test the two types with characters that had powercast at 50%.

I removed all modifying equipment from one character (a Lizardman) that had the following base resistances at level 24:

Fire = 40, Air = 25, Mental = 15, Water = 35, Earth = 35, Divinity = 15

Magic Screen provided the following:

Fire = 75, Air = 60, Mental = 50, Water = 70, Earth = 70, Divinity = 50

Element Shield and Soul Shield provided the following:

Fire = 100, Air = 89, Mental = 100, Water = 99, Earth = 99, Divinity = 100

All spells were at top (7) power level. Perhaps more importantly some have suggested that the "100" figures are not accurate in that the display will only list up to 100 but the amount of the protection can exceed this - something useful to counteract party levels lower than opponent levels.

So in this instance Element Shield provides this amount more than Magic Screen:
Fire = 25 (presumably the figure is 29, but the additional 4 points are not shown)
Air = 29
Water = 29
Earth = 29

Magic Screen provided 35 to the "elements" (Fire, Air, Water, and Earth). Essentially in this scenario then Magic Screen is about 60% as effective as Element Shield - not bad but not good enough, particularly with the character vs. opponent level alteration. Now it could be that I'm getting that additional "40%" via Powercast, (but I doubt it) - if so then I will change my position, but from the data I currently have I won't.

Now if you purchase certain cloaks for your characters you are bumping an additional 10% across the board and this, in conjunction with Magic Screen, MAY be enough depending on your party AND depending on the level of your opponents. However, in my opinion this is still to risky for a beginner especially considering the places you have to go to get these cloaks. (there are however other items in the game that also boost element protection, but rarely across the board in the "elements", and rarely with as large and increase - and you will "never" find/purchase either enough of these items or items that will be able to be used by all characters in your party).

I definitly like Magic Screen's "staying power", but, with the exception of one battle I remember (at AP), Element Shield lasted through the duration of each battle (and this included earlier battles where Element Shield was not cast with full power). Following the format I've provide, battles typically end quickly.

I was being somewhat facicious with the "Murphys Law" statement. You are quite right about opponet casters casting protections at the start, the piece of the puzzel your missing is that a majority of battles with spell casting opponents have more than one caster in their "group" (and sometimes involve several groups). Futhermore (for combat balancing with the engine) these casters will either raise Soul Shield OR Element Shield (not both), though in some cases like the Rapax Mages you will have one casting Magic Screen (fairly rare with most other casting opponents). Essentially then you have one caster casting a defense and several others casting nasty spells at your party.

Deathstings are nasty (all characters should have 1 ressurection bag available in their inventory for such cases - especially at the level your describing), but actually I was thinking of Rapax Archers in addtition to numerous other Rapax. (btw, please edit your post and remove where you encountered Deathstings, a bit to much of a spoiler that far into the game.)

[ 08-21-2003, 03:21 AM: Message edited by: ScottG ]
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