Author Topic: Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand  (Read 438 times)

Legacy_BelgarathMTH

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« on: November 04, 2010, 05:08:10 pm »


               Hello.

I was just playing against the Three Winds last night, and basically getting my butt kicked, especially against the Wise Wind and the Dark Wind.

I finally beat both of them by turning the difficulty down to "easy" and then playing the battles over and over until I got lucky, but it feels like a dirty win.

I only found out afterwards that you can get allies against the Wise Wind, which might have made that battle a little more fair, especially since there would have been more targets for all the stun and paralyze spells. (No help from Protection from Evil.) Buff spells were useless because it kept casting Dispel Magic at way higher than my level. I know it had to be over 18th level because it cast two Time Stop spells.

My main problem against the Dark Wind shadow lich was Bigby's Forceful Hand and the daze that goes with it, which was a killer that meant "game over" every time the shadow lich cast it against the main character. Protection from Evil would not prevent the daze. Buffing spells of any kind were useless because it always cast Dispel Magic first.

My main question is, how is there any defense against this spell?

I do have Tony K's AI, and he programs all casters to open with Dispel Magic followed by incapacitating spells followed by high damage. The bosses all have high spell resistance and pre-cast buffs.  I can't figure out any defense whatsoever against this kind of casting.

Any insights?
               
               

               
            

Legacy_HipMaestro

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2010, 07:14:24 pm »


               
Quote
BelgarathMTH wrote...
I only found out afterwards that you can get allies against the Wise Wind, which might have made that battle a little more fair, especially since there would have been more targets for all the stun and paralyze spells. (No help from Protection from Evil.) Buff spells were useless because it kept casting Dispel Magic at way higher than my level. I know it had to be over 18th level because it cast two Time Stop spells.

My two centavos...

The Wise Wind is a level 20 cleric uber-gimped with special arcane spells like Time Stop.  What's that tell you?  It tells me that I better get help or it's a recipe for insta-doom.  You can enlist both William and Karsus, so along with your henchman, eventually it can be tamed and defeated. It's that teleporting around that annoys me the most.

BTW, I am guessing you are probably a caster rather than a fighter which make the end of SoU much more challenging.  Still, if so... grab a club or something and join in pounding some of these gimped foes since spells do very little.
Quote

My main problem against the Dark Wind shadow lich was Bigby's Forceful Hand and the daze that goes with it, which was a killer that meant "game over" every time the shadow lich cast it against the main character. Protection from Evil would not prevent the daze. Buffing spells of any kind were useless because it always cast Dispel Magic first.

The lich is level 14 wiz so you just need to beat the strength check to beat the bull rush which isn't all that tough for fighter-type with some str-boost equipment.  Bludgeoning and electric/acid seems to be most effective.

I've always avoided the casting threat by shoving an invis potion down my hench's throat, swallowing one myself and place the hench on Follow before passing through the door.  The true-seer lich can still spot you (unless you have Gtr Sanctuary) but at least the shadovar won't engage until you've passed through them rushing to force the lich into melee.  Once your henchman is near the lich (you may need to adjust the proximity to keep it close by) begin melee and change the hench to Attack Nearest.

This is typical strategy I use on most powerful mages except the ones with damage shields.  Feel free to try any variation of this strategy but honestly, I have never had any problem defeating the lich with just about any class on hardcore.

BTW, I have no idea if Tony's AI changes the monsters also, besides the henchmen, never having installed it.  [/quote]
               
               

               


                     Modifié par HipMaestro, 04 novembre 2010 - 07:30 .
                     
                  


            

Legacy_BelgarathMTH

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2010, 08:23:43 pm »


               Thanks for the advice, Hip, I appreciate it.

I found another post or two about this spell by using Google and finding some archived threads. According to the best info I can find so far, the only defense against Bigby's Forceful Hand, NWN1 version, is an item with Immune to Knockdown and another item with Immune to Mind-Affecting. The various spells against Mind-Affecting will stop the Daze effect but not the Knockdown, and are also vulnerable to Dispel Magic.

BTW - I don't like leaving things up to dice rolls. No matter how strong you are, you can still roll a 1, and I swear the d20 rolls in the game programs are weighted low and not truly random. (Watch the numbers carefully in any combat scroll - add the number of times you see a roll below 10 and the number of times you see a roll above 10. They should be even, but they are not. You will see far many more rolls below 10 than above 10.) Even if you think I'm imagining things about the dice rolls, you can still fail your check, and it's game over if you do against this spell.

I have been playing a cleric with Air and Magic Domains. The shadow lich's shadovar army was swept away effortlessly by my Call Lightning spells, but the lich himself is immune (over 20 spell resistance, I'm told) and has no problem ending the battle by himself with the Bigby's Hand. (My strength is only 14+Bull's Strength, and the highest spell resistance I can get is about 14.)

I had similar trouble at 7th level with the gray slaad just before Drogan's final scene. Nothing Dorna and I could do would damage him fast enough to get through his Regeneration.

As far as Tony K's AI, I think it is making a huge, huge difference. The default AI has the caster bosses cast their spells randomly, illogically, and stupidly. I can see where the shadow lich battle might be no problem at all to anyone using default AI, even with the Bigby's spell, since the lich would be unlikely to even cast it logically, if ever.

But with the new AI, he is pre-buffed, and uses the Dispel Magic - Bigby's - High Damage combo to devastating effect.
Every single one of the shadovar mages also casts Dispel Magic as their first action (I think), so they usually get at least one or two off before I can get them with Lightning.

Anyway, thanks for the answer, and I'm still interested in any knowledge or tips anybody has about defense against super-casters.
               
               

               


                     Modifié par BelgarathMTH, 04 novembre 2010 - 08:55 .
                     
                  


            

Legacy_HipMaestro

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2010, 09:10:58 pm »


               Try entering the shadow realm with your PC & hench silenced and then try to launch it again on the lich. It has high Will saves so it may take a few attempts to silence it (i.e. bigby is verbal).  Once you get 11 cleric levels you can use Gtr Sanctuary to walk right up to it and KD (hopefully you at least have this mage killer feat selected).  If it throws a bigby out it will probably target the only visible member, your hench.

I prefer not to rely on items to compensate for ineffective strategy.  But that's just me.
               
               

               


                     Modifié par HipMaestro, 04 novembre 2010 - 09:20 .
                     
                  


            

Legacy_Muric

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2010, 04:03:23 am »


               yeah, Tony K's AI forces enemy spellcasters to cast high level spells against you FIRST, as well as generally making life difficult.  Usually it's most powerful offensive spell followed by a couple buffing spells for itself, then offensive again and repeats.     you really do have to invest skill points into things you'd otherwise ignore (for example: discipline, listen and spot) if you use it.

  I know Tony K's AI makes the OC impossible with the leveled gear you get on normal difficulty.  it does make your henchmen behave a good bit more rationally though ( Linu actually tries to heal you before you are already dead, and tomi actually spots & disarms traps before you see them).  Hostile NPCs get very spammy with their knockdown and disarm feats too.  sure you may make the first 2 or 3 checks, but you're almost never so lucky the following one unless you have a decent amount invested in discipline skill.  I've recently removed the improved AI...a wee bit too much bad with the good in my opinion.

 NPCs using the default AI everything done is pretty random, and most times you don't need any spell resistance at all.   that said.. i don't think there is any resistances that negate the Bigsby's Hand spells.  you'd need spell mantle as a spell/scroll to really get around it i think.
               
               

               


                     Modifié par Muric, 01 décembre 2010 - 04:13 .
                     
                  


            

Legacy_HipMaestro

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2010, 06:59:32 pm »


               

Muric wrote...
 NPCs using the default AI everything done is pretty random, and most times you don't need any spell resistance at all.   that said.. i don't think there is any resistances that negate the Bigsby's Hand spells.  you'd need spell mantle as a spell/scroll to really get around it i think.

All Bigbys contain a verbal component and allow a check against SR. Bigby's crush allows a Fort save. Clerics and UMD-users should have no problem silencing Bigby casters.  KD/IKD is also somewhat effective against most casters regardless of the enemy level. '<img'>
               
               

               
            

Legacy_jmlzemaggo

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2010, 09:31:45 pm »


               True. I had that feeling sometimes Bigsby's Hand was somehow overpowered in the OCs... but when my wizardess was using it against her opponents.
'makes me feel sad even today acting so unfairly... but I'm afraid there is no going back.
               
               

               


                     Modifié par jmlzemaggo, 02 décembre 2010 - 09:58 .
                     
                  


            

Legacy_MrZork

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2010, 12:07:01 am »


               It would be hard for me to play the BW campaigns without Tony K's these days. At the very least, I look at it as balancing the fact that I know what's going to happen (especially in the OC that I've played through three or four times, though just once each for SoU and HotU). And, of course, for the OC, it really is pretty easy, even with smarter baddies.

In this case, Bigby's can be stopped by spell resistance, but you'd need SR of 22+  for it to work even occasionally against the Dark Wind. To my knowledge, nothing that shows up in SoU has SR over 20, though the spell might be useful, if your cleric can cast it and not have it dispelled/breached. You are better off with an item that protects from knockdown or stun. If you aren't disabled by them, the Bigby's spells are dispellable.

As sort of a separate rant, the problem with the spell resistance item property, IMO, is that so many of the items aren't available until you are nearing the point where their level of SR is of very little use, relative to other items you might equip. The exception, in the OC, is that I seem to recall running across a couple sashes of shimmering at level 7 (sometime near the end of chapter 1), when the SR of 12 will still block some casters. If you don't have another decent belt by that point, it's worth equipping. However, the challenging spellcasters tend to be your level or higher. So, the items that have "some property plus SR 10 or SR 12" (e.g. Grimgnaw's necklace, a few weapons) don't show up until the casters you are facing can pretty much ignore that SR. I mean, the Robe of Vecna has SR 10 and may start showing up in some treasure when your PC is level 14+. Really?!? Don't get me wrong: that robe may be useful for some PC casters who haven't been able to take any spell focus feats. But, since the SR of 10 is automatically beaten by any caster opponent of level 9 or higher (even without penetration feats), it isn't really helping a level 14+ character. I suppose it may stop a few minions' spells, but they weren't likely to take you down anyway. (And, keep in mind that SR doesn't protect your buffs against dispelling and breaches.)

There are a couple items, like the sash and there is a cloak of epic SR in HotU that have only SR and they are useful at the levels where you find them. For almost any other standard item (prismatic dragon boots are the only exceptions I can think of), the SR was an afterthought and, especially with ILR, it doesn't show up until it's of little use.

Basically, don't count on spell resistance to help you against any tough casters.
               
               

               


                     Modifié par MrZork, 02 décembre 2010 - 12:11 .
                     
                  


            

Legacy_jmlzemaggo

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Getting Owned By the Winds-Bigby's Forceful Hand
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2010, 10:07:54 am »


               Bigby...

As I said, play the caster yourself. Initiative is a good skill for casters. Outrun the other side.
I once found it an impossible but very funny spell.
Today, I simply see it as a false one, a total immersion killer.
C'mon, just look at it...
And its' green. Worse, light green... ':sick:'

(I finally "properly" used that smiley! But Olivier beat me on this. Again...)
               
               

               


                     Modifié par jmlzemaggo, 02 décembre 2010 - 10:14 .