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#1 Ahrimal

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Posted 10 May 2016 - 08:29 PM

So, I'm doing a SCS + SR run of the game, and the second major quest I'm running is Windspear Hills. 'Smarter' vampires are in a whole different league than anything else in that dungeon, including lycanthropes and golems which, by the way, give more XP.

 

It seemed like a little tough nut to crack, so I decided to apply a few buffs to my Cavalier. This includes: Chaotic Commands, Improved Haste + oil of speed, Improved Invisibility, Negative Plane Protection, Divine Might on top of potions of strength, constitution and dexterity, potions of invulnerability and defense, and the Amulet of Shield. I threw in Protection from Evil for good measure. I also had some fine wine to go along with all that cheese, mind. The thing is, that's the least-resistance path. If I want to involve the rest of the party, I need to spend even more resources to spread around Chaotic Commands, level drain immunity, etc.

 

I'm a huge fan of this mod. I'm not a very good player, but I've played through these games several times with SCS. I'm all for challenging encounters, but this is just silly. I don't think it's reasonable to need every buff in the setting and then some from Eberron to pull through, especially for a mandatory encounter, in an early game dungeon. This is a trash pull, not a boss fight.

 

TL;DR: these vampires are hella overtuned. Smarter vampires are cool. 4-APR, on-hit CON and level-draining, instant Feeblemind and Charm-spamming, fighter/thief vampires (plus a small army of adds), not so much.

 

/$0.02



#2 Fiann of the Silver Hand

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Posted 10 May 2016 - 08:39 PM

What you are witnessing is the inherent shittiness of a flawed system, not some random awfulness.  SCS decided to fight the cheese of BG's interpretation of 2.5 AD&D with more cheese.  You can either become a bigger rat, or exclude yourself from that particular competition.



#3 Ahrimal

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 07:32 AM

Heh, I guess I'll become a fat, dirty rat, then. Shame.

 

What I really like from this mod is the first bullet point in the description: "SCS plays fair". However, the constant, instant spamming of Domination, which is a standard action in PnP and especially "Mesmerism" which is clearly designed to get around hold and charm immunities, feel anything *but* fair. If I wanted a mod to make encounters feel like a huge "fuck you" to players, I would have installed Tactics instead.

 

I understand what you're saying, but I don't think the balancing baseline should be a Belm/CF-CF dual wielding kensage that rests after every encounter. If people want to play that way, more power to them, but I generally only stack every available buff and advantage systematically in MMOs.

 

I've removed the Mesmerism ability and given vampire Domination a casting time of 5 (since it's cast by ForceSpell, it's still uninterruptable as it should), and the encounter is much less annoying, while still being non-trivial outside a doping level that would make Lance Armstrong blush.

 

I'm not raging or even calling for changes to the mod, mind. Just some honest feedback from a long time fan of the mod.



#4 kreso

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 12:16 PM

Fwiw, vamps don't see through invisibility so there's no need to fight them at all in Windspear hills - go invisible and get the key.

2nd, if you're using vanilla items, Pro Undead scroll gives you 10 turns time to kill them with whatever you want. 

If you're wanting a proper battle and not Pro Undead cheese  tactics, come back at a later date; Imp.Haste/Malison+Slow+False Dawn/Sequencered skull traps/Cleric's Turn Undead ability/Azuredge/MoD etc. make a world of difference. I find them decently challenging bar one thing - CON drain lasts too long (1 turn should be enough, 5 turns make player rest after each vamp battle which is horrible RP-wise).



#5 InKal

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 09:54 PM

Vampires should be at least a little difficult and that exactly is how they are in SCS - slightly more difficult.

 

if your level is like 12 or 13, you shouldn't have any problems.

 

at low level you need THACO and you need AC (and good weapons, doh) but one fighter is not enough. all I need is Korgan or Minsc (Barbarian from Polytweak) and my protag (usually Wizard Slayer rebalanced, Barbarian or Kensai/Thief). NPP from Spell rev last long enough and I'm also using dagger stolen from Arledian (?) thanks to RR. well, I can kill them one by one even without improved haste but I need potions of giant strenght (at least orange), invulnerability, heroism, speed and at least 2 potions of regen for each fighter. and four/three invisibility potions for the rest of the party. would also recommend properly buffed Jaheira fighting them. micromanage your fighters when they are getting hit and drink potion at 2/3 health.

I assume we are talking about Ancient, Elder vampires. IIRC Ancient are immune to weapons +2 which means that you really want to be at reasonable high level, equipped with good weapons and have at least two (recommend three) competent fighters.

 

ps. I'm such a badass LOL because recently started playing Improved Anvil 6.2 and well....VAMPIRES!!!  Let me just say it again:

 

V A M PI RES !!!!!!!!!11 



#6 subtledoctor

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Posted 24 May 2016 - 06:22 AM

TL;DR: these vampires are hella overtuned. Smarter vampires are cool. 4-APR, on-hit CON and level-draining, instant Feeblemind and Charm-spamming, fighter/thief vampires (plus a small army of adds), not so much.


I generally just don't install the "improved" vampires component (same with beholders) but I suppose an alternative would be to make a little meta-mod that tones them down a bit. E.g., 2apr instead of 4apr, add a save against the CON and level drain, and do something about the Charm/Feeblemind spam...

Faiths & Powers: Spell spheres and kit pack for priests and paladins
Might & Guile: Tweaks and kits for warriors and rogues
Scales of Balance: Game tweaks and rule overhauls
NPC_EE: More options for NPCs in BGEE, SoD, & BG2EE


#7 kreso

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Posted 26 May 2016 - 09:37 AM

I made one about a year ago. It removes the CON drain alltogether, but allows Vampires to "drink blood" and heal themselves if they hit you. Here's the link.



#8 frostysh

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Posted 31 January 2017 - 01:28 AM

The Vampires on the Insane difficulty (far right slider), with SCS all setting on the maximum difficulty, - a very easy to defeat, I was little bit disappointed.. but there is much more tough opponents, along with those pity Vampires :), so it is ok, the main tactics is next - run by 1 char and shot/strike with stuff by another, when Vampire will change the target, press pause, and switch runner to shooter, vice versa. Of course you will need a wide room or the open space, on the small, closed rooms - Vampires a very deadly due to their stupid "Drain ..."
The single exception from this rule - those b... from the Labyrinth (when you will escape from some place.. do not want to spoil), that Vampire is truly powerful (I even can say, she is immortal for some time..) annoying as a bloody hell itself, and caused me to be VERY carefully.

But that situation was on BG2EE 1.3.2, I do not know about v 2+ .

Edited by frostysh, 31 January 2017 - 01:31 AM.

"The monstrous evils of the twentieth century have shown us that the greediest money grubbers are gentle doves compared with money-hating wolves like Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler, who in less than three decades killed or maimed nearly a hundred million men, women, and children and brought untold suffering to a large portion of mankind."
- Eric Hoffer

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- Albert Einstein

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#9 bob_veng

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Posted 31 January 2017 - 03:31 AM

I made one about a year ago. It removes the CON drain alltogether, but allows Vampires to "drink blood" and heal themselves if they hit you. Here's the link.


very logical, thanks

#10 frostysh

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Posted 31 January 2017 - 04:12 AM

I don't think this is a very logical. If the vampire drains the blood, the victim suffers from a weakness like in the "Dracula", this is means that CON must be drained permanently :) .
And as I said, even with the maximum possible difficulty setup - Vampires is just targets for beating, they are very easy enemies comparing to some others...
And I forgot to add, the only one, single strong and very difficult to defeat, vampire you will face she only if the special component from Unfinished Business - Cat and Mouse has been installed. This vampire will be immortal for some time, and hunt your party in the Labyrinth. The vampire will appear not alone, but with her own vampire-party, every time, and they are truly tough...

"The monstrous evils of the twentieth century have shown us that the greediest money grubbers are gentle doves compared with money-hating wolves like Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler, who in less than three decades killed or maimed nearly a hundred million men, women, and children and brought untold suffering to a large portion of mankind."
- Eric Hoffer

"Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind."
- Albert Einstein

"Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."
- Steven Weinberg

#11 kreso

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Posted 31 January 2017 - 05:35 AM

I don't think this is a very logical. If the vampire drains the blood, the victim suffers from a weakness like in the "Dracula", this is means that CON must be drained permanently :) .

I did that due to popular demand, I actually don't even use it :rolleyes:.

Fwiw, I'd really love that "drink blood" ability gets toned down a bit in SCS (save vs death or similar). Fighting Bodhi in Tactics was absurd by itself, but with SCS anything not protected from magical weapons gets shredded instantly with this. Enraged Korgan? 5 hits (1 round) and he's gone.

The only alternative is running around and cheesing her out, which I hate.



#12 subtledoctor

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Posted 31 January 2017 - 10:36 AM

I once played a BG2 game where I painstakingly (using NI only) replaced all vampire level drain effects with CON drain effects. It was great. (The level drain mechanic is the worst.) It made potions of fortitude actually useful!

Now that I know Weidu it would be a much easier task... hmm, maybe I should write that up...

EDIT - and yeah, IMHO all of that kind of stuff - level drain, stat drain, etc. - should offer a save. Give it a penalty if necessary, to balance it.

Edited by subtledoctor, 01 February 2017 - 12:15 PM.

Faiths & Powers: Spell spheres and kit pack for priests and paladins
Might & Guile: Tweaks and kits for warriors and rogues
Scales of Balance: Game tweaks and rule overhauls
NPC_EE: More options for NPCs in BGEE, SoD, & BG2EE


#13 frostysh

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Posted 01 February 2017 - 12:39 AM

I did that due to popular demand, I actually don't even use it :rolleyes:.
Fwiw, I'd really love that "drink blood" ability gets toned down a bit in SCS (save vs death or similar). Fighting Bodhi in Tactics was absurd by itself, but with SCS anything not protected from magical weapons gets shredded instantly with this. Enraged Korgan? 5 hits (1 round) and he's gone.
The only alternative is running around and cheesing her out, which I hate.

I have installed both - Tactics and SCS, and I have no Korgan in my party, and I have doubts that anythings with close combat only, can defeat those vampire-party - there were a few high rank vampires, and + Bodhi and they will shred like a sheet of paper your Korgan even if he will have 100 hits per 1 round. But this was on Insane difficulty in the BG2:EE v1.3.2, that was an eternity ago, so I can mistaken something.

There was only one single case, where "kiting" not worked against vampires, and hell that was hard because of that. I do not remember exactly, how I managed to defeat all of that - but I clearly remembered about how difficult it was.

And know I want to continue my walktrough, but I do not know, what I need to do, to properly transport my saves in version 2.4 (GOG) :( .

I once played a BG2 game where I painstakingly replaced all vampire level drain effects with CON drain effects. It was great. (The level drain mechanic is the worst.) It made potions of fortitude actually useful!

Now that I know Weidu it would be a much easier task... hmm, maybe I should write that up...

EDIT - and yeah, IMHO all of that kind of stuff - level drain, stat drain, etc. - should offer a save. Give it a penalty if necessary, to balance it.

Well yeah, the level drain was sometimes super annoying, indeed. Because you need to fill magic-stuff with Neither-Plain-Protections and such stuf, which is not very useful sometimes :/ IMHO Drain-stats is much more logical and looks more cool in general. Drain level is little bit stupid, I think feature must be only in "Mind-suckers" such as Illithids.

About a potions, and especially potions of fortitude - those stuff was hell useful! Usually, when my party face the "boss" the amount of potions drastically gone :( . Especially potion to CON, which also widely used elsewhere, because of their ability to allow for your party to grab more weight (is that CON I hope, not a STR...), hp regeneration, etc. The problem was about amount of some potions in the sellers and their price :(.

Well of course I am not a modder (I have only one single poor mod to GUI), and I do not know much about game-balance and stuff, I just played for the long time in BG:EE, BG2:EE.

damn, I want to play, but I need to configure properly my BG, right now I have downloaded those hotfixes for 2+ versions by Big World Setup guys, I will try to install modes, and hotfixes. But I do not understand what I need to install first, what last :( .
"The monstrous evils of the twentieth century have shown us that the greediest money grubbers are gentle doves compared with money-hating wolves like Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler, who in less than three decades killed or maimed nearly a hundred million men, women, and children and brought untold suffering to a large portion of mankind."
- Eric Hoffer

"Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind."
- Albert Einstein

"Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."
- Steven Weinberg

#14 Fruits of the sea

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Posted 01 February 2017 - 07:38 AM

Vampires are always going to be awkward in a d&d setting, since their primary mechanic is level draining. To make level drain a threat, they basically have to have ridiculous THACO and attacks per round, otherwise any party with decent AC could simply disregard. It's funny how a vampire without charms and level draining would still be a dangerous opponent because they are so powerful in melee. Despite that, level drain is still easily countered with negative plane protection -hence ANOTHER gimmick, the crazy charm spells, especially in SCS.

 

Illithids and beholders have similiar mechanical gimmicks but they aren't countered quite so simply, nor do they require melee hits. So those creatures, while deadly for an unprepared party, don't pose as multifaceted a threat. And they aren't 4 APR combat gods.



#15 frostysh

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Posted 01 February 2017 - 08:07 AM

Vampires are always going to be awkward in a d&d setting, since their primary mechanic is level draining. To make level drain a threat, they basically have to have ridiculous THACO and attacks per round, otherwise any party with decent AC could simply disregard. It's funny how a vampire without charms and level draining would still be a dangerous opponent because they are so powerful in melee. Despite that, level drain is still easily countered with negative plane protection -hence ANOTHER gimmick, the crazy charm spells, especially in SCS.
 
Illithids and beholders have similiar mechanical gimmicks but they aren't countered quite so simply, nor do they require melee hits. So those creatures, while deadly for an unprepared party, don't pose as multifaceted a threat. And they aren't 4 APR combat gods.

I am disagree.

I can only say for the version of game that I have played - BG2EE 1.3.2, Insane, UB (some components), ARP (some components), SCS (max difficulty setup.) Tactics EE (max difficulty setup).

--- SPOILER WARNING ---

In the labyrinth, with installed UB: Cat and Mouse component, Bodhi appearing with party of vampires, every 4-6 game hours, which is preventing your party from the any rest... Bodhi is overpowered (THACO included) and more important - she is immortal, and cannot be killed until your party will escape from the Labyrinth. Don't forget about Spellhold. Bodhi, after her party destroyed, just saying something like that "I will come back!", and she coming back every time with a new party of vampires. Without rest your party is not able to use any Restoration from Level Drain spells. And this is means that you will need for a very carefully planing your actions, to explore a full Labyrinth, and do not get your party in situation when Bodhi appearing and you have nothing against them :(, because there is a lot of other enemies.. Well I will make walktrough (I guess so) on version 2.367 with all those installed mods and on Legacy of Bhaal difficulty, and we will see what is changed :p .

NPP is not very useful against many vampires or high rank vampire + allies. Because NPP low duration (monsters with all those mode have a lot of HP so battles is long ...), so you need to keep many NPP in your spell panel, which is preventing you from keeping other, much more flexible and useful spells, as I remembered.

What is means 4 APR combat gods ?

Edited by frostysh, 01 February 2017 - 08:22 AM.

"The monstrous evils of the twentieth century have shown us that the greediest money grubbers are gentle doves compared with money-hating wolves like Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler, who in less than three decades killed or maimed nearly a hundred million men, women, and children and brought untold suffering to a large portion of mankind."
- Eric Hoffer

"Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind."
- Albert Einstein

"Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."
- Steven Weinberg



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