Author Topic: Tips on how to build a good character  (Read 726 times)

Legacy_HELLruler

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Tips on how to build a good character
« on: September 08, 2015, 10:44:31 pm »


               

Hey everyone, I just finished the OC, but some things still confuse me.


 


I started as a Sorcerer, and RDD sounded interesting, so I changed from a spellcaster to melee. The spells I had were mostly buffs (Resistance, Shield, Bull's Strenght), so I didn't have much trouble with this brutal change. I also got a level of Fighter for heavy armor


 


Most of the game was simple. I also had Daelan as henchman, and whenever I had a tough battle, simply buffing up would make it easy. But Chapter 4 was different. I had a lot of trouble in some important fights - fire dragon, half-dragon balor, twin dragons, morag


Even got to the point where I respec'd to Sorc 1/RDD 10/Fighter 5 to finish the game


 


So, I'm still learning the ropes, but I'd like to know more about creating a decent character instead of copy-paste a build from the internet


 


Thanks for the help '<img'>



               
               

               
            

Legacy_allen179gmail

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Tips on how to build a good character
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2015, 11:38:59 pm »


               

One problem you will run into in the OC is that some spells and the Prestige Classes were added in SoU and HoT expansions


MagicalMaster can most likely give you some sound advice on character builds



               
               

               
            

Legacy_allen179gmail

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Tips on how to build a good character
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2015, 01:40:38 am »


               

One resource is http://www.neverwinternights.info/


Also don't use the recommend button. This is what "Recommend" gave me for a level 1 Sorcerer


Human


Str     10 (+0)


Dex   14 (+2)


Con   14(+2)


Int      12(+1)


Wis    10(+0)


Cha    16(+3)


 


Looks nice but is not that good. With only a Cha of 16 a creature's spell resistance can be a problem.


Int of 12 only gives you a total of 4 skill points at level up.  You need concentration, 8 lore (if you want RDD)


search (so you don't step on a trap and get killed) , persuade ( for extra quests and loot), spellcraft gives bonus to all saving throws against spells.


search and persuade will cost you 2 skill points each. that means that you will step on a trap or fail to get a quest or extra loot.


 


My Sorcerer started at lv1


Str     8(-1)


Dex 10(+0)


Con 10(+0)


Wis    8(-1)


Int    16(+3)


Cha  18(+4)


The 16 Int is my choice I want 6 skill points at level up.


There are a lot of Str giving items and also mind protection items in the OC. This doesn't count all the potions, healing, buffs, etc.


I don't go for the buff spells because of the potions that I pick up along the way. I use Damage, Summon, and Protect spells. As I level up I will keep my Cha, Concentration, search, persuade, and spellcraft max out.


               
               

               
            

Legacy_rogueknight333

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Tips on how to build a good character
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2015, 01:53:56 am »


               


...Most of the game was simple. I also had Daelan as henchman, and whenever I had a tough battle, simply buffing up would make it easy. But Chapter 4 was different. I had a lot of trouble in some important fights - fire dragon, half-dragon balor, twin dragons, morag...




 


First off, there is a significant spike in difficulty in the final chapter, so it is not terribly surprising, or necessarily evidence that you have no clue what you are doing, that you had a bit more trouble there than earlier.


 


 




...Even got to the point where I respec'd to Sorc 1/RDD 10/Fighter 5 to finish the game...





 


That probably is stronger than a straight Sorc/RDD. Red Dragon Disciple is a strong class, but also a bit weird in that one needs to be a Bard or Sorcerer to play it, yet it is not an especially good complement to those classes (though it works better with Bard). The chief benefits of the class primarily benefit melee combat oriented warrior types, the extra strength in particular being almost useless to anyone else.


 


 




...So, I'm still learning the ropes, but I'd like to know more about creating a decent character instead of copy-paste a build from the internet...





 


Looking at some of the existing builds on the internet might still help you if you do so in an attempt to understand the reasons why they are built as they are, rather than just slavishly copying them. That said some very general (i.e., various exceptions and qualifications exist for much of the following) and by no means comprehensive (i.e., just a few things that occur to me off the top of my head) advice about building strong characters would be:


 


1) Do not waste too many ability points in something other than your primary stat. That would be Strength for most warrior types, Dexterity for a PC fighting primarily with either missile weapons or melee weapons that benefit from the Weapon Finesse feat, and one's primary casting stat (Intelligence for Wizards, Charisma for Sorcerers, Wisdom for Clerics & Druids) for a caster.


 


2) Do not forget about the Tumble skill. Every 5 points in this increases your AC by 1, which can ultimately add up to very significant AC bonuses. Increase it even as a cross-class skill as necessary. In qualification of 1), above, it can even be worth putting extra points in Intelligence just to have enough skill points to max out Tumble.


 


3) Multi-classes are better than single classes. There are many classes that can add significant benefits even if you only take a few levels in them, e.g. only 3 levels of Rogue gives you Evasion (allowing you to avoid damage from many spells), Uncanny Dodge (AC boost in some situations), 2d6 Sneak Attack Damage, and lots of extra skill points, only 4 levels of Fighter gives you proficiency in every Armor & non-Exotic weapon, 3 extra feats, and access to the Weapon Specialization feat, 1-3 levels of Paladin can add significant bonuses to a Sorcerer or other class with high charisma, etc.


 


4) When multi-classing, pay attention to the net Base Attack Bonus. You need a BAB of at least 16 to get the full 4 attacks per round. E.g. 16 levels in a medium BAB class & 4 in a high BAB class (adding up to a BAB of 16) would do better than 17 & 3, respectively (adding up to a BAB of 15).


 


5) Multiple classes are good, yet, paradoxically, PCs who are very specialized in their general function will tend to be the most effective. If you are a warrior, most every class, ability point, feat, etc. should be focused on increasing AC, AB & Damage, if a caster on increasing the number and power of spells cast, etc.


 


Also keep in mind that there is more to NWN than simply having a strong build. That certainly helps, but expert players can handily beat the OC even with a very sub-optimal build.


               
               

               
            

Legacy_unclejoe1917

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Tips on how to build a good character
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2015, 02:41:19 am »


               


Hey everyone, I just finished the OC, but some things still confuse me.


 


I started as a Sorcerer, and RDD sounded interesting, so I changed from a spellcaster to melee. The spells I had were mostly buffs (Resistance, Shield, Bull's Strenght), so I didn't have much trouble with this brutal change. I also got a level of Fighter for heavy armor


 


Most of the game was simple. I also had Daelan as henchman, and whenever I had a tough battle, simply buffing up would make it easy. But Chapter 4 was different. I had a lot of trouble in some important fights - fire dragon, half-dragon balor, twin dragons, morag


Even got to the point where I respec'd to Sorc 1/RDD 10/Fighter 5 to finish the game


 


So, I'm still learning the ropes, but I'd like to know more about creating a decent character instead of copy-paste a build from the internet


 


Thanks for the help '<img'>




Honestly, your level choices look pretty good.  I don't know what you chose for feats or ability points, but your 1/10/5 split is perfectly sensible.  One thing you likely did was to miss a few side quests that would have pushed you to level 17.  


RogueKnight touched on the spike in difficulty. In both incarnations of NWN and NWN2, I have found Klauth the red dragon to be one of the hardest fights, so there's no shame in getting your ass handed to you a few times there.  All the other encounters you name are also legitimately challenging.  


The most important thing to building a decent character is building one that is fun for you to play.  Strategically, at least have a general idea of what you want the 'toon to ultimately be so you aren't wasting levels deciding what you want to do. 


               
               

               
            

Legacy_allen179gmail

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Tips on how to build a good character
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2015, 03:39:11 am »


               

A word of warning about multicasting. Read up about XP penalty. It doesn't applied to the build you describe but can cost you.  


Gnome Wizard 6/fighter 4/rogue 1 will have a XP penalty.  Rouge and Fighter need to be closer together level wize


               
               

               
            

Legacy_MagicalMaster

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Tips on how to build a good character
« Reply #6 on: September 12, 2015, 05:39:14 pm »


               

MagicalMaster can most likely give you some sound advice on character builds


It's like the Bat Signal! Except I'm a little late.

Even got to the point where I respec'd to Sorc 1/RDD 10/Fighter 5 to finish the game
 
So, I'm still learning the ropes, but I'd like to know more about creating a decent character instead of copy-paste a build from the internet


Funnily enough, your build is better than I think you feared it might be. RDD is indeed melee focused and common builds include things like Bard 2(or Sorcerer, but Bard gives Tumble/UMD)/Fighter 28/RDD 10 (or something similar). The main idea is to use the large AC and Str increases from RDD make the build better than a 40 Fighter or something similar.

On the flip side, if you want to be a caster Sorcerer in a future playthrough, you should avoid RDD and basically go pure Sorcerer.

I'm going to nitpick some of Rogueknight's points in a moment, but his advice is good in general. Beyond that, we can give a lot more help if you ask for advice about a specific character type (or class or something). There are so many potential builds out there that we couldn't possibly easily cover them all here.

With only a Cha of 16 a creature's spell resistance can be a problem.
Int of 12 only gives you a total of 4 skill points at level up.  You need concentration, 8 lore (if you want RDD)
search (so you don't step on a trap and get killed) , persuade ( for extra quests and loot), spellcraft gives bonus to all saving throws against spells.
search and persuade will cost you 2 skill points each. that means that you will step on a trap or fail to get a quest or extra loot.


A few things...

A, Charisma has nothing to do with spell resistance. Charisma will give you more spells per day, make it harder for an enemy to make the Fortitude/Reflex/Will save for a spell, boost some Charisma skills, and in some modules make people like you more...but it won't help penetrate spell resistance.

B, int of 12 gives you *three* skill points. 2 from Sorcerer, 1 from Intelligence modifier of 1. The *fourth* skill point came from being Human.

C, Search isn't worth it for a Sorcerer. You can't get enough points to detect difficult traps after a few levels anyway and you need rogue levels to detect the worst traps on top of that.

My Sorcerer started at lv1
Str     8(-1)
Dex 10(+0)
Con 10(+0)
Wis    8(-1)
Int    16(+3)
Cha  18(+4)
The 16 Int is my choice I want 6 skill points at level up.


I'd go with

Str 8
Dex 8
Con 14
Int 14
Wis 10
Cha 18

or

Str 8
Dex 8
Con 16
Int 12
Wis 8
Cha 18

The latter trades off 1 skill point per level for 1 more HP per level and 1 more Fortitude. I usually go Concentration, Persuasion, Spellcraft, and Tumble with four points per level.

2) Do not forget about the Tumble skill. Every 5 points in this increases your AC by 1, which can ultimately add up to very significant AC bonuses. Increase it even as a cross-class skill as necessary. In qualification of 1), above, it can even be worth putting extra points in Intelligence just to have enough skill points to max out Tumble.


For Wizards/Sorcerers, "typical" builds will have such low AC that Tumble isn't taken for the AC boost but rather for the ability to move through combat without triggering AoOs.
 

3) Multi-classes are better than single classes. There are many classes that can add significant benefits even if you only take a few levels in them, e.g. only 3 levels of Rogue gives you Evasion (allowing you to avoid damage from many spells), Uncanny Dodge (AC boost in some situations), 2d6 Sneak Attack Damage, and lots of extra skill points, only 4 levels of Fighter gives you proficiency in every Armor & non-Exotic weapon, 3 extra feats, and access to the Weapon Specialization feat, 1-3 levels of Paladin can add significant bonuses to a Sorcerer or other class with high charisma, etc.


Many players view some/all of this behavior as abusing or "cheesing" the game -- a level 30 Sorcerer suddenly taking 1 level of Paladin and gaining +15 to all saving throws does not make much sense. Quite a few Persistent Worlds will either have rules prohibiting/limiting this behavior and/or modify the rules to make it less appealing.

Most single player modules (technically 100% of the ones I've played) also assume you *aren't* abusing those quirks of the game and are designed around more "standard" characters -- pure classes or more evenly split classes (40 Rogue cool, 40 Fighter cool, 20 Rogue/20 Fighter cool, 36 Fighter/4 Rogue what?).
 

4) When multi-classing, pay attention to the net Base Attack Bonus. You need a BAB of at least 16 to get the full 4 attacks per round. E.g. 16 levels in a medium BAB class & 4 in a high BAB class (adding up to a BAB of 16) would do better than 17 & 3, respectively (adding up to a BAB of 15).


How relevant this advice is will depend on several things.

A, a level 20 (or under) world/campaign versus a 21+ world/campaign. A 17 Druid/3 Fighter is going to be better than a 16 Druid/4 Fighter due to getting access to level 9 spells. And a campaign that will end before level 20 makes it irrelevant.

B, if you're a Cleric. Clerics actually *want* to hit 15 BAB and *not* 16 BAB due to how a specific buff works.

C, if it hurts you elsewhere tremendously for some reason. The 1 AB actually matters more than the extra attack (remember that the 4th attack is made at a -15 penalty -- so even if you hit your target 80% of the time on your first attack you're going to hit only 5% of that time on the fourth attack) -- not worth giving up 2 AB from class skills or feats or something (if that somehow happens) *just* for the fourth attack. Which also means that going up to 17+ BAB is very helpful if you can do it. 16 isn't really a magical number.
 

Also keep in mind that there is more to NWN than simply having a strong build. That certainly helps, but expert players can handily beat the OC even with a very sub-optimal build.


This can be split into a *minimum* of two main parts (there's really a lot more): gear and knowledge.

A physical attacker (Fighter, Rogue, Arcane Archer, etc) is going to heavily depend on using the correct gear for AC, AB, immunities, resistances, etc. You're mostly going to be auto-attacking and you are very gear dependent.

A spellcaster is going to heavily depend on using the correct *spells.* You could beat the OC naked with a Sorcerer. Not the case with a Fighter (now a Monk with bonuses to unarmed maybe). Knowing *what* to cast will matter far more than what you are wearing. Much less gear dependent.
               
               

               
            

Legacy_allen179gmail

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« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2015, 07:59:03 pm »


               

I ran a fighter half way through the Prelude naked. '<img'>



               
               

               
            

Legacy_Proto

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« Reply #8 on: October 23, 2015, 05:41:52 pm »


               

Could you please explain the following:


 


"if you're a Cleric. Clerics actually *want* to hit 15 BAB and *not* 16 BAB due to how a specific buff works."


 


I'm pretty sure you are referring to Divine Power and that it's bugged. But, how exactly does it work? 


 


The reason I ask is because I'm considering a Cleric/Monk build for a future playthrough / play around with.



               
               

               
            

Legacy_Empyre65

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« Reply #9 on: October 24, 2015, 12:39:20 am »


               

When you have more than 1 attack per round, each attack after the first one has five less AB the  the one before.  For example, if your AB is 18, then your four attacks will have the following ABs: 18, 13, 8, 3. When you use Divine Power to get your 4th attack, that attack will be at full AB, so it would be 18, 13, 8, 18. So, you want to get your 4th attack from Divine power, not from your BAB.


 


The numbers will be similar for a build with Monk fighting unarmored and using either unarmed strike or kama, except the attacks will -3 instead of -5, and there are 1 or 2 more of them. For a Cleric / Monk, you want to use kama (or two of them) because you can cast certain spells, like Darkfire, on a kama and not on your fists.



               
               

               
            

Legacy_MagicalMaster

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« Reply #10 on: October 24, 2015, 03:58:43 am »


               


I'm pretty sure you are referring to Divine Power and that it's bugged. But, how exactly does it work?




 


To expand on what Empyre said -- if you have 16-20 BAB at 20 and use Divine Power, the game says "Oh, he already has a fourth attack, don't need to add one."  If you have 15 BAB, though, the game decides it should add an extra magical attack...but that's a new category (same as Haste) and thus starts at the highest AB.  So if we just look at "pure BAB" progression we'd see...


 


16-20 BAB: 20/15/10/5


16-20 BAB (Haste): 20/15/10/5/20


15 BAB: 20/15/10/20


15 BAB (Haste): 20/15/10/20/15



               
               

               
            

Legacy_Proto

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« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2015, 10:13:00 pm »


               Well, that's "working as intended"
               
               

               
            

Legacy_MagicalMaster

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« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2015, 07:30:15 am »


               Not like "working as intended" goes in DA:I. There's three categories of attacks: main hand, off-hand, and magical bonuses. Main hand and off-hand are solely determined by BAB, level, feats, and (duh) whether you have a weapon in the off-hand. Anything that gives extra attacks (Haste, (Great) Cleave, Divine Power, scripted bonuses, etc) will fall into the third category.
               
               

               
            

Legacy_Proto

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« Reply #13 on: November 05, 2015, 08:51:01 pm »


               


Not like "working as intended" goes in DA:I. There's three categories of attacks: main hand, off-hand, and magical bonuses. Main hand and off-hand are solely determined by BAB, level, feats, and (duh) whether you have a weapon in the off-hand. Anything that gives extra attacks (Haste, (Great) Cleave, Divine Power, scripted bonuses, etc) will fall into the third category.




 


Gotcha. Makes sense I suppose since you would be lacking that extra attack completely without Divine Power.


 


Guess you're right...poor use of WAI.


               
               

               
            

Legacy_MagicalMaster

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« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2015, 11:04:24 am »


               NWN is massively, massively better than DA:I in terms of WAI. Which is kind of funny because it's a much earlier game and build into the whole moddable build so far more things that could go wrong. Very few default bugs and the ones that exist tend to be very minor.

Also, on second thought, since (Great) Cleave comes from a (permanent) feat, I think it might be in its own category. But all temporary/magical bonuses like Haste, Divine Power, Tenser's Transformation, scripted bonuses, etc, are in their own unique category.