Putting together my first party.

#1wolfy42Posted 1/8/2014 7:44:26 PM
I've had this game since it came out. I even installed it once and played a few minutes. Then, for years, I would see the CDs when I was looking through old games and think "I should play that" and I never did.

Then steam had a sale.....


So now, I'm FINALLY going to play this game.

I read the manual. I read some posts, and now...I'm ready to decide which characters to add to my party.

I have a few things I know I want.

A gadgeteer:

Why?

Well I want a character with lock pick skill. I am on the fence between this and bard....and getting both seems like a waste. I really want to try and have most of the abilities in the game....so I may use a bard as well...but the only way to use gadgets...it to make a gadgeteer.

I'm thinking of going both ranged and melee, working on swords and modern weapons, although I won't put points in swords, or start even using them, till later (when I can kill lower level enemies to level them up safely probably). I plan on maxing locks and picks, engineering and modern weapons at first, then later on...work on swords.

A Bishop:

Why?

First of all, I'm a long time Wizardry fan, and even though I can't identify 9 anymore, I still want a bishop.

Second I want psionic spells, I don't want a pure psionic...and I don't think I'm going to have a monk (it's one of my optionals though). Even if I do go with a monk, I like the large spell pool of the bishop, and I want the ability to remove cursed items and identify things better. I'm not going to have many pure spellcasters (if any), so I need a bishop that can handle multiple schools.

My plan is to focus on the base spell skills (wizardry/psionics/Alchemy probably) and then boost the elemental schools individually by casting spells.

A Valkaryie:

Why?

I really liked the game Too human:)

In addition to the above awesome reason, I need melee characters with extended range. I might even want 2 valkaryies (in my party!!!). My plan for my formation includes 2 up front fighters, 2 side fighters (one on each side..with extended range) and then my weak/spell casters/range characters in the back. If....I only have the bishop as the weakling, I'd go with 3 up front fighters and 2 side fighters with my bhishop in the back hehe.

Anyway the Valk (or Valks) well net me the last spell school (divinity)...that my Bishop won't be able to get. That means with just 2 characters I'll have all the spells available in the game eventually (or at least the ability to get them). Also her cheat death ability sounds pretty awesome to me...especially when she also will have the power to bring others back from the dead. I'm really considering going with 2 of them.

That mostly covers all my bases...with just 3-4 characters so far, So I am free to take whatever I want for the remaining characters. I have my lock picking abilities dealt with from my gadgeteer, and all my spells covered as well.

Everyone talks about fairy ninjas in the boards. I have no clue how hard the corpus item everyone talks about is to get, but.....I could add a ninja into the mix. The concept seems kinda random to me though, and the fighter looks like it gets some pretty nice, and fast, advantages.

So I'm thinking of going something like this:

Fighter.......Fighter
Valk-----------------------------Valk
Bish---Gadg

As my party formation.

I could ditch 1 fighter for a Ranger I guess, which would give me the scout ability (and the possiblity of ranged crits).

Another option is something like this, if I decide to go monk.

Monk
Valk Valk
Rngr...Bish..Gadg

Which would totally protect my bishop by hiehr hp chars.
---
No duckies, just drowning.
#2TheMouseMasterPosted 1/9/2014 7:12:16 AM
can give you a very enlightening answer, but before I go into it, I must ask:

How many spoilers do you want? Things like "Why a fairy ninja" are only minorly-spoilerish, but things like "training a bard" would require me to give an explanation as to why that's a bad idea in general based on game mechanics you probably aren't familiar with yet, and why 2 valks might (emphasis: MIGHT) be a bad idea involves me giving away storyline elements.
---
TheMouseMaster, you are my hero. That post wins you a whole 17 1/2 internets.
--- Flakhawk
#3wolfy42(Topic Creator)Posted 1/9/2014 12:49:43 PM
Hmm, well I'd rather avoid any story spoilers as much as possible. I already heard about the corpus thing for a fairy ninja.

If there is a reason to avoid 2 valkaries...that would be good to hear, especially if it was possible without saying exactly why....like....it's better to have a valk and a lord because later on you get and advantage from having a lord for instance.

I really liked the 2 valks because of the extended range right from the start.

I looked up the instruments list for bard, and it looks pretty good long term, with some very nice spells based only on stamina usage.....but I already have a gadgeteer. I guess I could replace one Valk with a bard instead though....since having an extended range weapon early on wouldn't be that big of a deal. I could change my lineup a bit to have 3 characters in front (including the bard, one valkary on the left side and my bishop on the left side middle (Which would still make it very hard for melee chars to hit him.

I was digging the idea of having two cheat death chars with divine spells though:(
---
No duckies, just drowning.
#4TheMouseMasterPosted 1/10/2014 6:44:31 AM
No storyline spoilers... gonna make the multi-valk question harder then ;p.

I will say this: Extended range weapons aren't that useful. They have a role of course, but or the role that normally use them, Fighters, Valk, and Lords tend to have enough "survival" to just be a frontline fighter anyway, and Rangers, if they aren't on the frontline, are usually better off just shooting their bow anyway.

Or, you can use the 8-front setup: clear out your Front quadrant of your formation circle, and put your party in the left, right, and center parts. Ay enemy that approaches from the front quadrant will then be considered "short" range; and if you need to "protect" a member, you can still drop them in the rear quadrant.




Bishops:

Due to the way training works in this game, making a bishop that actually utilizes all 4 spell schools is hard. I recommend looking up Flamestryke/Zimlab's wizardry 8 page, and looking at the training tips for bishops to get an idea of why, but in a nutshell, if you want a 4-book bishop, you have to be ready to grind out the wazoo in 3 specific areas of the game, AND make sure before you get tot hem that you don't "screw up" your spell books preventing you from doing said grind. That said, a properly trained bishop is worth the effort.




Bard:

When I said "training a bard is a bad idea", I didn't mean that a bard is a bad idea. I meant that, you said you wanted him to lockpick AND ranged weapon AND music AND have some sword. That's too many specialties for him; if you want that, you will have to grind yourself silly in fights to do it (the music one is easy enough to grind with the Viola D'Amore and a trip to He'li). When I use a bard, granted, she has a sword+shield and a crossbow in hand, but both of those take 2nd seat when it comes to levelup points.



Which brings up another point: while it's true that every zone has a "maximum", you cannot expect to just go back to a "low level zone" to grind up your characters off-skills. The types of enemies you find will be leveling up with you as the game progresses; if you want to "power train" your bard's crossbow, for example, you are going to have to do it the hard way of finding a difficult fight, putting your frontline on Defend, letting your bard shoot every turn while they take hits, and hope you outlast the opponents. Possible, but if you thought the Arnika Bankvault Grind was annoying, this is going to kick you square in the Endurance Charm.
---
TheMouseMaster, you are my hero. That post wins you a whole 17 1/2 internets.
--- Flakhawk
#5wolfy42(Topic Creator)Posted 1/10/2014 2:18:28 PM
I have changed things around a bit...still trying different setups/builds....but I do want a bard for sure now. I never planned on doing lock pick with him though, thats the gadgeteers job.

I don't NEED 2 valk's anymore for my favorite formation...because I decided to go with a monk.....who uses staves (which has extended reach).

So that would give me so far:

Monk/valk/gadget/bard/bishop/fighter.

That free's up my bishop a bit. I only plan on going with 3 schools on him. Wizardry/Alchemist/Divine.

I plan on boosting stealth + crit hits + staves with my monk till 6, then ditching staves (letting it raise by itself) and boosting psionics.

That should give me access to all the spells eventually....and all the special abilities (gadget/bard).

I don't have a ranger for scout, but testing it out, manually searching isn't really that hard. I only have 2 divine casters...by the bard has heal all as well in a pinch.

The reason I wanted 2 rows between my front and bishop, was to avoid extended range attacks against them. I can avoid ranged attacks/spell attacks with spells later on etc, but I'm hoping that by having my squishy chars in the back row....extended range attacks won't reach them. I didn't notice them getting hit against the crab boss guy at least...but it could have been just random.

With valk on one side monk on the other...and my back against a wall....my back chars are always protected from short range attacks (even without back against t he wall, I don't seem to get surrounded much and they don't hit them)....that was what I was going for. Having 4 chars in the front...for some reason still seems to allow enemies to go around. But....if you have then on the sides...the enemies stop and attack them instead (or seem to0))....not sure if that will keep happening long term or not.

I really need/want a second divine character which means either a lord or a valkarie...and since I already have two sword using characters...and I don't think the lords hp regen is as useful long term as the valkaries.....I'd rather go with the valk.

I'm still not sure if monk was the right choice to be honest. Everyone raves about fairy ninjas....but they don't have extended range, less max hp, no psionics (So I would need psionics on my bishop..forcing me to drop alchemy which seems like a waste)....and they are a long term character.....which seems silly for my first run through the game.

Thief though....could have been a good alternative to monk...probably doing more damage....and having a bonus to lock picking. Oh well, gonna go with this setup I think...I can always replay it later:)

Breakdown of EQ long term is looking like this:


Fighter Sword based
Monk Staff based
Bard Sword/insrument based
Gadget Modern weapons/sword based
Valk Polearm based
Bishop Spell based (hehe)

For now I'm focusing Str/Dex for my fighter every level up. I'm a bit confused about vitality though....some people say the hp boost is retroactive, others say it isn't. My fighters hp seem quite high anyway...so i'm not too worried about it. Might not even boost vitality later and focus on speed instead (once I max strength).

The vitality question is more important for my bishop, but honestly I'm just focusing on int/piety right now. She's a fairy bishop and have very low hp...even if HP are not retroactive I don't think I would change how I put her stat points right now.
---
No duckies, just drowning.
#6TheMouseMasterPosted 1/10/2014 3:21:44 PM
HP boosts are not retroactive. Some people are confused by the fact that every time you put a point into VIT at level up you get an HP out of it, but that doesn't change the fact that the HP you get at level up BEFORE adding that point is VIT-based.

If you haven't played the game much, then I feel compelled to point this out, spoiler or not:

During the game, you can actually have eight people. You will constantly run into NPC's who will join you, and with... 2.5 exceptions, they won't actually "disappear" from your party. They may object to going certain places, but there are ways you can force them into it. So your "full party" can/will actually be 8 people.




See if you can read between the lines of that post ;p.
---
TheMouseMaster, you are my hero. That post wins you a whole 17 1/2 internets.
--- Flakhawk
#7wolfy42(Topic Creator)Posted 1/10/2014 6:12:17 PM
Lol, your saying I'll probably get another Valk as an NPC later..yeah thats not a spoiler for me...and I had seen the whole RPC or whatever they call it thing in other threads.

One thing I didn't know though, is if you can control the level up process of those additional members?

Can i change how they boost stats/skills etc....and choose their spells etc?

IF that is the case, then in effect I really would have 8 members to choose from...but be limited to whatever classes the npc choices are for 2 slots.

In which case that does open up more options that is true:)

I've been playing with my current setup of fighter/monk/valk/bard/gadget/bishop and enjoying it so far..and that really seems to cover all the bases. If I can get another Valk from an NPC...that would really make me happy...since I wanted 2 valks. Just for convienence...I would probably want a Ranger for the last slot if there is an NPC ranger....for auto search if nothing else....or I guess another fighter for the high damage (I guess a thief would be ok for damage as well...and could take over traps/locks from my gadgeteer).


Anyway.....I like my core group so far...and when I added others to it...I'll be able to pick and choose which NPCs I actually like...instead of having to choose which ones I need:)

Hopefully I like the Valk though *grin*
---
No duckies, just drowning.
#8TheMouseMasterPosted 1/12/2014 1:08:46 AM(edited)
Yes, a ranger is available as a party member. she tends to object to a number of zones, but a quick trip to Unconciousville fixes that right up. After hearing her talk for a bit, you may just wish to have her in Unconciousville for half the game, but that's another matter.



The hireable Valk is the game's most storyline crucial character. 90% of everyone at all times takes her in their party.

Yes, you can choose their levelups.

There is no fighter to hire (well, there's one in the 2.5 I mentioned earlier, but he's REALLY short term)
---
TheMouseMaster, you are my hero. That post wins you a whole 17 1/2 internets.
--- Flakhawk
#9PainAmplifierPosted 1/12/2014 9:18:45 AM
TheMouseMaster posted...
Yes, a ranger is available as a party member. she tends to object to a number of zones, but a quick trip to Unconciousville fixes that right up. After hearing her talk for a bit, you may just wish to have her in Unconciousville for half the game, but that's another matter.


Forcing RPC's into zones isn't the best idea, not only do they endlessly complain but they suffer from a Hex like reduction to their stats and skills. Far better to edit out the region restrictions and then just take them wherever you want with no penalties. (The game is just far too small to deal with those restrictions unless you are roleplaying them as characters.)