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About mrscojangles

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  1. I don't know how you think wizards have nothing going for them. Just to name a few: chill fog (crazy strong for a level 1 spell), combusting wounds, expose vulnerabilities, arcane dampener, ryngrim's enervating terror (easily one of the best CC spells in the game, along with charm/dominated stuff), wilting wind, missile salvo, etc. And plenty of other good stuff, especially in terms of aoe damage.
  2. It's worth mentioning that the Hand Mortar is slash/pierce, so the pierce immune part doesn't apply to that specific blunderbuss. It also is different than other blunderbusses in that it is only firing one projectile per shot, so it isn't like a standard blunderbuss with 5 smaller projectiles. Hand Mortar + Scordeo's Trophy is a solid combo for cipher. There are plenty of other quality guns and scepters and wands as well too depending on your preferences. Also, yes, the cleave on Hand Mortar does generate focus. I can't speak on the rogue stuff as I haven't really played around with the class. I would suggest Ascendant for the cipher subclass and you definitely are not gimping yourself by being ranged. Being ranged also gives you the option of playing with lower con and res (or dumping res completely), which frees you up to put more points in per/dex, since a front line melee char is going to need some more survivability than ranged.
  3. Because of the modal. While you are correct, more deflection is a good thing, the medium shield modal is a 30% chance to completely resist an attack at the cost of 25% recovery penalty on weapons. Since my tank isn't really doing any significant weapon damage and is mostly just hitting things to debuff them with the weapon modals, the 25% increased recovery is negligible. At that point you're trading some deflection for the chance to completely avoid an attack and you're not losing out on as much accuracy, if your tank is a chanter or something else where you still want to be able to hit the enemy with debuffs.
  4. Personally I'd say medium shields seem to be the better option for tank characters, since they're generally taking more damage from melee while the ranged enemies are more likely to be going after your back lines or squishier characters. I can see swapping around to a large shield if you know the enemies have specific reflex save spells that are mashing you, but for general usage I'd argue medium shield is the better option for tanks. Can't speak for non tanks as the accuracy loss has never been worth it for me on dps characters, though I could see the large shield modal being nice to situationally swap on with a heal/buff char, when you are casting spells that don't target the enemy.
  5. Ranged Helwalker/Ascendant is sweet. Generate wounds with dance of death/enduring dance. 10 might from Helwalker at 10 wounds, 10 int from duality at 10 wounds, 5 might/2 pen from thunderous blows, 5 dex and lightning lash from lightning strikes. Since you only lose 1 power level when not at full focus as Ascendant, you can still toss out CC or debuffs just fine even when you're not ascended. Can spam around mind waves/mind blades/silent scream/amplified wave for great damage when ascended. Borrowed instinct for a nice accuracy boost. Secret Horrors is a solid aoe debuff and obviously have great CC with Whispers of treason and the likes. It is squishy but even dumping resolve and only having 8 or 10 con, its still ok as long as you have some heals and a front liner or two. Depending on your difficulty, I'd recommend very high perception. Perception and accuracy are king for this build, then dex and then you want a decent bit of int/might but don't really need to go much higher than 15 or so, since you're going to be getting so much of both from all the monk buffs. I'd recommend dual wielding with serafen's gun and some other 1hander. Serafen's gun works very well for generating focus since it has the built in aoe and the fact that it has two different damage types. I enjoyed the build pre 1.1 but didnt really need the CC portion much and basically played it as a straight up damage machine. I'm sure could still go that route post 1.1 on easier difficulties, but i've been playing upscaled POTD with the hardcore deadly deadfire mod now and its working great as a hybrid character. On tough fights you can spend a lot of time CCing with Whispers, debuffing with secret horrors, etc, and then when you're able you can pump out serious damage and interrupts and stuff too. It is a very flexible character. If you have other people locking down CC or don't need to CC much for a specific fight, you can do a ton of damage. If the fight has 15 enemies you can spend the majority of your time controlling the battle with all the mind controls and debuffs and interrupts. Surprisingly, even with all the CC I'm doing on this playthrough, it still is holding its own on overall damage since with the mod, fights are pretty drawn out and when my other characters may be all out of spells and resources towards the end, the cipher can keep on trucking. On the pre 1.1 playthrough it was top damage by a solid margin, and it wouldnt surprise me if it still ends up that way on this playthrough once i unlock silent scream and amplified wave. But even at low levels, mind wave is decent damage with an interrupt and mind blades is great for 2+ targets, especially against enemies with high saves but not super high deflection. It also has a short cast time so you can really pump out a bunch of them quickly with high dex. I would highly recommend the combo. Perhaps I'll get around to making a guide for it at some point. Edit: I just remembered to grab Scordeo's Trophy in my current playthrough and wanted to mention that is a great second weapon to go with Hand Mortar. Enchant it with opening barrage and you'll be stacking up reduced recovery time the entire fight, which applies to all your attacks and spells.
  6. No, not just a you issue. They look the same on my end as well.
  7. I think easiest way to check will probably be your quest log. At least when i swapped from the normal version to the HC version, it increased the difficulty skull rating on all my quests. I assume swapping from no mod to the normal version would also be bumping up the skull rating on a fair number of quests as well.
  8. Yeah, you can install the mod or swap between the normal and HC versions at any point. The only catch is that any maps you've loaded into will not change, so you may want to set up a separate save file for when you set up the mod. That way if you go to a handful of maps and find they're all too tough, you could roll back to the previous save, as my understanding is the enemies on those loaded maps would hold their levels even if you removed the mod or swapped from the HC to the normal.
  9. Deadly Deadfire: https://www.nexusmods.com/pillarsofeternity2/mods/43 I started my 1.1 potd upscaled playthrough with the normal version on V2.1 and it was solid at the start but then difficulty dropped a bit and I decided to try swapping over to the hardcore version(V1.2). With the hardcore version, I just swapped over last night so I've only played a bit but it wouldn't surprise me if it's serious overkill on intro island, since you're going to be lacking gear to deal with the large level differences between you and the enemies, so on a fresh game you may want to start with the normal version until you get a few pieces of gear and then swap over to the HC. Or the HC might be good from the start, but I haven't tried it yet so I couldn't say. Since I've only played a few hours since I swapped over to the HC version, I can't speak with certainty on how it will hold up throughout the entire game. I'm only level 7 or 8 i think, but so far it's making pretty much all non named enemies 2-4+ levels higher than me and I think all the named enemies/bosses are set to 4+ levels higher than the player. Both versions are nerfing XP gain significantly, but with the way some of the high levels spells are balanced, I think XP restrictions are going to be fairly standard on anything thats trying to significantly ramp up the difficulty, at least until some mods start adjusting enemy AI. And I'm guessing if you're a completionist and doing all the side quests, you'll still be hitting cap with time to spare. It's too early in my game for me to give any definitive review of the overall difficulty with this mod for the late game/game as a whole, but it certainly is increasing it significantly over the base game. Whether it will hold up throughout the entire game remains to be seen. It definitely is not going to be for everyone, but it may be worth a shot for people who are looking for some additional means to buff up the enemies at the moment.
  10. To be fair, the 5000g Berath's Blessing effectively does that as you can make a beeline straight to Port Maje and hire 4 adventurers. Downside is they'll be 1 level lower than you, but the experience needed per level is minuscule if you start at level 1 and still small if you use the Berath's Blessing to start at level 4, so the gap in levels gets closed quickly and then you just have a tiny bit of stagger of a few thousand xp when hitting a new level. With XP in the game capped at 190,000, the 3000xp gap or whatever it ends up being is insignificant in the grand scheme of things
  11. And that's fine, I have no issue with people playing solo or whatever they want to do. But the fact is, it's a tiny percentage of the game base that even plays POTD and then it is a tiny fraction of that who plays it solo. At the end of the day it's not reasonable to expect the devs to be balancing the game in any way for the .01% of their base who will ever do a solo potd play through. It's cool that there are people doing it, and I'm glad people are finding all sorts of ways to enjoy the game, but the game is never going to be balanced around that in any way, shape, or form.
  12. I'm confident that making sure the game is a reasonable difficulty for solo isn't even on their list of priorities. The triple crown solo achievement is just an achievement, they absolutely aren't doing any game balancing around it, and nor should they.
  13. Your best bet is probably to only use empowers to refresh resources, because empowering the abilities themselves is stupidly OP. Obviously if you like being stupidly OP, thats cool too, but if thats not your style, then I'd definitely avoid empowering spells themselves. Especially spells that are already crazy OP like missile salvo.
  14. I agree, there is definitely a lot of potential but I think even still it isn't ever going to be able to reach that same level of meta gaming as BG2 with mods. I think so much of the tactical feel of the BG2 mods came down to casters though. Yeah, there are some tough melee opponents but the bulk of the serious stuff was all about properly utilizing your casters to properly counter the enemy casters. The affliction/inspiration system just doesn't have that same level of depth to me. I have a dexterity affliction so i cast a dexterity inspiration to remove it. There isn't any more depth to that. With BG2 casters there were so many more layers. Yeah, Breach will remove the enemy wizard's stoneskin, but your breach isn't going to work until you remove his spell shield. So you pierce magic the shield but now he's got invisibility so you can't target breach on him. And he has immunity to Divination so you need to use a rogue to detect illusions cuz your true sight doesn't dispel his invis. Etc, etc. Where as pillars, you can negate anything on your characters with suppress affliction or Liberating Exhortation. Or arcane dampener on the enemy (it has a saving throw, but still). And beyond that its just a enemy has a X stat inspiration. Do i have a X stat affliction? If not, its no big deal because they're still not giving enemies the same level of immunities as something like protection from magical weapons or mantle or protection from magic energy or whatever.
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