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Old 09-27-2002, 01:23 PM   #1
Dundee Slaytern
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Join Date: June 10, 2001
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I am curious as to how people usually play IWD:HoW. I have a party of six on Heart of Fury mode now, and I noticed something. Everytime I engage in a battle, the spells( from my party) start flying non-stop.

I have the following in my party,

Paladin( the leader, also known as the guy that stands in front, alone)
Fighter/Thief( usually does not enter a fight unless the opponent is held)
Fighter/Druid( master of the shocking)
Ranger/Cleric( party booster)
Necromancer( pure offensive spellcasting)
Bard( the singer)

For big battles, I usually turn off the AI. The Paladin is kinda cheesy because his innate Protection from Evil( PfE) stacks with the Clerical version for a grand total of +4 AC bonus. His innate PfE also lasts for hours( like Stoneskin), so everytime I rest the party, I make him recast it. It is as though the Paladin has a permanent +2 AC bonus.

Sadly for the Paladin though, I use him for no other purpose than to be a punching bag for the enemy. Each time I encounter hostile forces, I make the Paladin cast PfE( Clerical version) and throw him into the fray, left to fend for himself while I concentrate on the spellcasting.

The Fighter/Thief is usually ignored by me. Maybe I should make him use Bows... since I loathe to put him in melee combat with the enemy. On rare occasions, I use him to poke enemies that are held in order to hasten their demise.

The Fighter/Druid is one of my favourite spellcasters in this game. I just basically use him to cast 4 Static Charges( and 4 Call Lightnings if I am outdoors), then spam all manner of offensive spells and summons into the heat of combat. If in the event that he runs out spells, I cast a few personal boosters on himself and send him to join the Paladin as a punching bag.

The Ranger/Cleric is my party's 'witchdoctor'. Bless, Curse( on the enemy), Prayer, Protection from Evil 10', etc... all enhances the statistics of my party members, while lowering the enemies'. He can also summon stuff and join the Fighter/Druid in being a shocking member of the party, but his main purpose is to be the party booster.

The Necromancer is my selective offensive spellcaster. He picks out the weak points in the enemy's ranks and exploits them mercilessly. As most of the offensive spells in IWD:HoW are not party-friendly, I have to be careful in what I cast, and where I cast. Singular targets that are not near the other party members( like the Paladin) are prime targets, and ripe for the weeding.

I usually go for spells that strikes one target only, as these are the 'safest' spells. I do have some area-of-effect spells though, and I use them carefully.

Lastly, I have my Bard, another non-combatant most of the time. She usually just sings in all my battles, and only pause to cast a spell now and then before hastily resuming her singing( done properly, you will not interrupt the singing effects). I only resort to her combat abilities either if the battle is extremely tough and I need the additional magic muscle, or if I need her to save some other party member.

How do you usually fight?
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Old 09-27-2002, 02:16 PM   #2
pritchke
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Join Date: September 5, 2001
Location: Calgary, AB
Age: 42
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I have a similar fighting style with a few differences.

I have a party of six on Heart of Fury mode now, as well. When I engage in a battle, the spells( from my party) start flying non-stop when I think it will be difficult.

Fighter (The Tank AC -13)
Ranger(Fighter, Some spells, Static)
Fighter/Thief(Really good fighter with armour which I remove for T&L)
Druid(Spell Caster, Shapeshifter Elementals)
Cleric/Mage(party booster, extra fighter)
Bard(the singer, the leader in towns)

The Fighter is my basic tank. Not much needs to be said about her.

The Fighter/Thief is used as a fighter almost as much as my fighter. I only use the Thief skills when I know traps are around or I need a lock picked. He does wear better armour than leather so I do have to remove it when I use those skills. Worst part is if I forget to put it back on.

The Ranger is another great fighter with some spells like Static charge and protection from evil. For some reason enemies seem to be attracted to him like a magnet so he is always the first to withdraw from combat but is good with the bow so he can fire off a few rounds before he his healed and heads back into melee.

The Druid is my favourite not only does she have great damage spells but if I get into a jam or overrun by enemies with slashing I can have my entire party retreat for range combat, have my druid turn into a water or earth elemental and fend of the works of them. A water elemental with static charge activated is a terrifying sight (30 crushing damage + 47 electric damage = 77 damage has been the highest damage she has done in one shot). So I do use her for combat as well. Fire Elemental she turns into against trolls.

The Cleric/Mage is a both offensive and defensive spell caster. The Cleric spells I use are mostly defensive, and the mage spells are mostly offensive. If I need another fighter she works well even with the lowest hit points due to the protective spells she can cast on herself.

Finally I have my Bard, the most non-combatant of them all. He usually just sings the war song, and only pause to cast a spell now and then before hastily resuming his singing. I seldom resort to his combat abilities even less than my cleric/mage. Due to my bard my Cleric/Mage can focus on offence instend of healing unless someone is severely injured due to the Bards healing war song.

[ 09-27-2002, 04:48 PM: Message edited by: pritchke ]
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Old 09-27-2002, 03:47 PM   #3
Albromor
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Join Date: June 13, 2001
Location: Northfield, NJ USA
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Dundee, I always make my thief a fighter/thief in order so that they can use bows. I, too, rarely put them in battle but it sure helps when they can use a bow and not just stand around. For what it is worth here was my party:

Half-elf Ranger
Dwarf Fighter
Human Cleric
Halfling Fighter/Thief
Gnome Cleric/Illusionist
Elf Fighter/Mage

* 4 Fighters, 2 Clerics, 2 Mages, and 1 Thief. All fighter classes had bows,
both clerics used slings. Both my hafling and elf would pepper with arrows when my half-elf and dwarf had to go toe to toe. Of course my elf would cast spells when needed.

This party combination was extremely effective. The gnome and the elf saved my party more times than I can count.
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Old 09-27-2002, 03:51 PM   #4
NobleNick
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Join Date: February 5, 2002
Location: Huntsville, AL, USA
Age: 57
Posts: 1,045
You guys have much different party compositions and tactics than I; but I like what I see! You rave about the three characters that I did not put into my party: druid, bard, and ranger. You just about have me convinced to drop my current game and start a party of these three!

I have been playing IWD:HoW, on NORMAL; but am only to Severed Hand, on my first play through. (haven't entered the HoW or TotLM areas, yet.) I average like 2 hours a week, so it will be a while....

Anyway, I have a party of six:

1.) Paladin
(Justification: Tank with innate resistances to bad guys, turn undead.)

2.) mc: Gnome Thief/Illusionist
(Justification: Get thief and magic in one package, saving party slots. Specialist gives extra spells. I am rethinking the wisdom of this, since magic users are typically back ranks players and thieves are often in the front lines. This gal has, by far, the fewest hp of all my characters, yet she is always way out front when the fighting starts and has to spend a good part of the battle high-tailing it back. One of my most valuable characters, since my fighter/mages have not yet dualed over; but I often wonder if a fighter/thief mc or dc might have been better.)

3.) Cleric/Fighter. Dual over to fighter at level 8-10.
(Justification: Want a fighter who can heal, if critically needed. Also need to fill the "healing hole" until my "big guns" cleric duals over from fighter. The extra hp won't hurt, either)

4.) Fighter/Cleric Dual over to cleric at level 9.
(Justification: get lots [over 100] extra hp, and deep proficiency at clubs, as a fighter before starting on her journey to become my standard cleric.)

5.) Fighter/Conjuror Dual over at level 13.
(Justification: Again, lots of hp and DEEP proficiency at swords before dualing over. Specialize to get extra spells. My strategy is to build a spellcaster that can spam spells, augment the party with conjured minions or, if she gets bored with all that, cast blur and mirror on herself [ever try to hit a simultaneously blurred and mirrored character?] before wading into melee to dish out some mondo HUGE punishment.)

6.) Fighter/Sorceror Dual over at level 9 or 13 (haven't decided which level, yet)
(Justification: You know the drill, by now -- More hp, DEEP proficiency at bow, specialize for more spells: Play this guy as a ranged fighter, with a lot more than just arrows to zing at the enemy.)

As you can see, this is a magic-heavy party, without the drawback of low hitpoints (except my poor mage/thief mc); and I like that. My basic strategy is to hold lots of skills in ranged combat, and cream most everything before they can close to melee. If outnumbered, high hp on my tanks allows my spellcasters to protect them by spamming area effect spells without worrying about the occasional scorch or frostbite from friendly fire.

After reading your posts, I am thinking of replacing #3 (cleric dualed over to fighter) with either a cleric dualed to ranger, or maybe a druid (can you dual-class a druid?).

I am also trying to figure out how to get a bard into the party; but don't want to give up my fighter/mages nor the Pally (he's not that good, now [and boring, to boot]; but I'm told he'll get more valuable later). Hmm.... maybe the pally. What do you think: Is a bard worth the loss of a paladin?


Edited to add tactics/strategy and correct a few errors.

[ 10-01-2002, 02:47 PM: Message edited by: NobleNick ]
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Old 09-27-2002, 06:55 PM   #5
Lord Brass
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Join Date: September 17, 2001
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If you want a cleric/"fighter" make them a cleric/ranger. The options are much better with the additional spells available. You can't get past specialisation anyway, so don't worry.

I guess you guys have gone through IWD/HoW/TotL before and are importing your characters back into a new game? I've thought about it for a long, long time, but have never done it. Does it become a cake-walk, even on HoF?
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Old 09-27-2002, 10:04 PM   #6
Dundee Slaytern
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Location: Pasir Ris, Singapore
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I always start from scratch. 6 level one characters fighting bugs in the inn's basement. [img]smile.gif[/img]

Which on HoF mode, is enough to level up my Bard. INSANEEEE.
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Old 09-28-2002, 12:50 PM   #7
pritchke
Bastet - Egyptian Cat Goddess
 

Join Date: September 5, 2001
Location: Calgary, AB
Age: 42
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lord Brass:
If you want a cleric/"fighter" make them a cleric/ranger. The options are much better with the additional spells available. You can't get past specialisation anyway, so don't worry.

I guess you guys have gone through IWD/HoW/TotL before and are importing your characters back into a new game? I've thought about it for a long, long time, but have never done it. Does it become a cake-walk, even on HoF?
The start is a cake walk because the goblins can't really do any damage even if they had a zillion extra hit points. However in HoF mode when you get to the fourth level of dragons eye it seems to be pretty similar as if you created a new party. Extra characters are added to some of the battles so the game is not exactly the same. I found it interesting that the Necromancer in dragons eye had a few extra friends along this time.

I have heard that the luremaster area is really difficult on HoF even with an advanced party.

[ 09-28-2002, 12:52 PM: Message edited by: pritchke ]
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Old 09-30-2002, 01:17 PM   #8
Vassago
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Join Date: August 21, 2002
Location: KY
Age: 44
Posts: 188
I never was a fan of dualed or multi classed characters, but I have to say, I don't know what I would do without my Fighter/Theif. I gave him a crossbow so that I could balance out my ammo. Ranger uses the bow, Fighter/Theif uses the crossbow and Druid uses the sling. I started this party from scratch on Insane until I got to Dragon's Eye. That first battle was too tough for me on Insane, so I dropped it back to Hard and have been playing that way ever since. Actually, I had forgot that I dropped it down to Hard until I read this post. This party that I have now incorporates my favorite characters (Ranger, Theif and Druid). I found that mixing the Theif w/ a Fighter only enchances his performance. He has decent hit points and is a killer backstabber. I use Hide in Shadows a lot w/ both my Ranger and Theif. I know that there is a huge battle coming up, I will hide both of them and have them go in and find a good place to chill. Then bring in my Druid to start up the dialogue. After which I unlesh heck on them.
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Old 09-30-2002, 02:06 PM   #9
Keraptisdm
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Join Date: August 23, 2002
Location: Near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Age: 54
Posts: 410
My first party that completed the game (IWD/HOW/TOLM) consisted of:
Fighter, Male, Human
Fighter, Female, Elf (More of an archer)
Fighter/Cleric, Male, Dwarf
Thief/Mage, Male, Half-elf
Illusionist, Female, Human
Cleric, Female, Human

Talk about a balanced party, eh?

During combat, my first two fighters and the Thief/Mage would launch arrows. Illusionist and Cleric would hurl bullets. As the baddies would close, I would move my dwarf fighter/cleric to the front for bashing while the others continued with the missle weapons. When the dwarf gets pressed, I would switch my first fighter to melee weapons and wade into the fray. The Illusionist and Thief/Mage would cast spells as required. The Cleric would step up and heal party members during combat or cast animate dead when necessary. Tactics vary dependent upon the situation of course.
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