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What is everyone's favourite party composition?
 

Thinking about PoE what excites me is that you could have whatever combination you like, so what is everyone excited to try and why?

 

I wish to try all rogue so I can see if there are any benefits to playing a party as one class. Maybe there are some extra role-play options and quest chains as a result. I can try out lots of different builds of rogue and see if I can get them to complement each other. Maybe one rogue is good with traps, another good with stealth etc.

 

 

 

 

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In Baldur's Gate, I generally liked having two spellcasters - usually a sorcerer and a mage-cleric - and then two melee DPS classes - usually a fighter and a thief. I'll probably play through the game a few times, assuming it's actually good and has at least mild replay value, not really paying attention to class composition and just using who I like best, but then later make my own party. Depending on how XP is handled, (split between party members a la the IE games? Or a flat modifier to all (possible) party members like NWN2 OC? ...), I might try soloing, too...probably with a spellcaster of some sort, though it kinda depends on exactly how strong spellcasters are. But I can't imagine they'll be weaker than non-spellcaster classes, at the very least, so...

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At least for my first play-through, I'll pick my companions more for story than for mechanical reasons. For subsequent play-throughs, I'll go with whatever tickled my fancy most during the first one.

 

I am intrigued by the idea of more homogeneous parties, in particular because most of those were quite hard to play in the IE games. I'd like to see what six fighters, or six rangers, or three fighters + three rangers could do, for example. Perhaps that would play a bit like a mini-RTS, with a good deal less player intervention than when dealing with magic-users.

 

There are also interesting role-play type possibilities there. If you've read the Malazan Book of the Fallen, there are the Grey Helms, for example. Could I create a party modeled on them? A Shield Anvil (cleric), Mortal Sword (rogue, perhaps?), and Destriant (paladin, perhaps?) with three fighters, with the cleric, paladin, and rogue heavily martially oriented.

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All I know is that party-based CRPGs with lots of classes, races, skills, choices and combinations are so darn fun. Like PJ, I will go for a story-ased playthrough first, and probably the second time too. Then I'll start to get more systematic and experimental, and then I most likely will be making all characters myself. A solo playthrough will perhaps even be in there later on. 

 

One thing that sounds cool is having an almost all-range party (some using bows and crossbows, others guns, and then yet other spells.

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I always go for what I consider a conventional party. Paladin, Fighter, Rogue, Druid, Cleric, Mage. This is what I usually have for the IE games or something similar (multi-class).

 

Fortunately, most of these are covered by the companions. If an unannounced companion does happen to be a Druid, I'll go for a melee character like a Paladin, Fighter or Rogue first. If there isn't a Druid companion, then I'll go Druid to balance it out as I like the idea of three spell casters. I'll play at least two play throughs to experience all the companions.

 

Then I'll go and play with themed parties as I do with IWD. Edér and is merry band of rogues. Aloth and his wizard apprentices. etc

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I always picked parties based on which characters I thought welded together personality wise. For example in BG2 playing as a paladin, it makes sense to pick up Keldorn, Mazzy and even that douche Anomen.

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Well I will definitely bring my man Garrus be..... oh wrong game....

Like many others I will build my first party using the games NPC's so I get the most out of the lore/story stuff.  The question is which NPC's since I haven't decided what type of character I want to play yet personality wise.  I never went "evil" in BG for various reasons so I may end up trying a character of a less reputable bent.  I guess we also need to wait and see on how well NPC's will be willing to work with each other too.  Hopefully we won't end up with another Viconia situation where like half the games cast gets shelved long term just to use one character.

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I rarely play evil. I find it repugnant, and mostly it's just really badly written so not much fun. The one memorable exception is Mask of the Betrayer. The writing was fantastic, and having my character become a devouring storm of betrayal and destruction truly worthy of the curse was... awesome.

 

I also felt really dirty afterwards. There was some really depraved and despicable stuff there. I loved it but would not replay.

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My party is generally composed by the order I meet the NPC's. I wont take anyone "evil" or if I encounter them too far into the game since Im already invested in whos in my party. The exception being if Im forced to lose a party member (Yoshiro, Iomen) and replace them with someone new to fill out the party but if its a "normal" death / chunking I will just reload.

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Playing "evil" characters in CRPGs are rare occasions for me too, and then typically it's been a matter of me trying some special class, like an assassin or an anti-paladin. And my "evil" almost always stopped at some overly selfish and slightly too murderous (weird how much of a killer all of your good and neutral characters actually is, too, btw). Thus, playing MotB came as quite a bit of surprise, and I mean that in a wonderful and weird way. That game actually made an evil playthrough interesting, coherent and viable for me, but yeah, a sense of profound sordidness engulfed me after a while, but I kept going till the end with that wall and all. And One of Many alone was a fab party companion! Hopefully, Obsidian will make morally varied playthroughs that are truly different and entertaining. My latest playthrough in FONV is in fact an evil one, but that setting is so disturbing to begin with. I almost shoot anything that moves or talks, which is certainly out of character for me. ;)

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*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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Primarily, I shall pick NPCs based upon personality and how they fit with my group. That said, the NPCs are one element where I have substantial concerns for my PoE experience. From the interviews and comments here it seems fairly obvious that Josh's preferences for characters and story are at the other end of the spectrum to my own; myself sitting so far to the popular as to have a foot in camp JRPG and Josh resolutely standing in fort P:T. Ultimately, I'll run with the NPCs up to the point where they start spoiling my experience and then switch to Adventurers' Hall.

 

That being the case, I should imagine I end up not creating a party but slowly replacing members as they drop from my ranks. They won't be like for like swaps, but will probably have similar roles (Dropping a Fighter for a Barbarian for example).

 

In terms of the IE games, my general preference was to have a mix of classes using a front 3 (melee) back three (ranged) formation, including 2-3 magic classes in the back, and having my (utility) thief in the back row. My current BGII playthrough is quadratic heaven, using Me (Sorcerer), Viconia, Aerie, Edwin, Nalia, Jan (later Imoen), and my next playthrough (Multiplayer) shall be the weaponmaster run of Paladin (Shield), Paladin (2h), Fighter (dual), Ranger/Cleric (dual), Kensai->Mage (2h) and Cleric/Thief (Shield). For some reason I find myself really excited about that playthrough.

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I always picked parties based on which characters I thought welded together personality wise. For example in BG2 playing as a paladin, it makes sense to pick up Keldorn, Mazzy and even that douche Anomen.

 

I almost always do the opposite.  I find it fun when NPCs are nothing like one another but have to get along in my party.  Cross-party sniping is excellent.

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At the moment the two main classes I'm interested in are monk and chanter. Race wise I typically roll dwarf however if there's an interesting looking new race (such as the aumaua) I'll usually give that a whirl. So first up I'll probably being playing an aumaua chanter with a dwarven monk as a custom Hall of Heroes companion. Although now that I think about it I'll probably scrap the dwarf because a dwarf monk sounds silly. So  dwarf chanter as my PC with an aumaua monk HoH companion. But I was really keen on that aumaua chanter as my PC.

 

I dunno.

 

As for the rest I'll pick up whoever makes the most sense for the plot.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'll most likely do the same thing I did with BG2. My first time through (damn, that was so long ago) I'd take NPCs as they come, probably switching some of them on the way if my party can't pull their own in battles or if others strike me as more interesting. Next replays would include my favourites as core companions and some of the ones I haven't tried, to see how they work and interact. When I get tired of that, I'd start experimenting with different and unusual combinations.

I probably won't get to the Hall of heroes until very late in my replays, unless most NPCs turn out to be boring or obnoxious. Solo - probably never.

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I'll make a character I like, nice and decent fellow.

 

Then pick everybody as they come along, unless they seem like total butts or super-evil.

When the party is full, I'll swap out the least likeable ones when better choices come along.

 

I'll make exceptions if I feel I really, really need a rogue in the party, or a spellcaster,

but the class/role of the companion is not what I'm designing the party with, I'm not designing the party.

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Interesting characters. I don't care what they do. I care about who they are.

 

Trying to micro manage a party to make it as efficient as possible isn't something I'm interested in. Having the most detailed and fleshed out companions along for the ride, that's what does it for me. If that means I have to play on easiest difficulty, fine.

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One for Diplomacy

One for Bluff

One for Intimidation

One for Wisdom

I should cover all bases with this.

 

I just hope Obsidian will hint at what characters could be interesting to bring in a specific area, in order to enjoy all stories, instead of having to try endless combinaisons so we can activate a funny dialogue between the monk and the priest. I never understood why I couldn't bring Okku with me in MotB. Thankfully, the editor was there but I didn't know how to change that at the time.

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Well, my optimized playthrough will be 2 meat-shields if I can't get away with 1 and the rest casters. Of course, at that point I'll have already beaten the game on at least 2 playthroughs, but still.

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2 fighters (includes paladins & rangers)

1 wizard (might be a sorcerer depending on the NPCs available)

1 cleric

1 rogue (might be a bard)

1 slot open for flavor. (often a druid, my favorite class)

 

I tend not to stray far from the traditional D&D Core Four.

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I like to play a 3 melee/3 ranged formation (or 2 melee 2 ranged)

1 engaging Fighter paired with a backup Paladin and a close-combat Cleric. Lots of heals. 

On the ranged I usually have a Mage (Spells/Darts) and a Ranger on the bow as well as a Thief (Sling). The Thief has no "stealth+backstab+trap" role in my group, but is usually a scout in caverns, corridors and open areas. I stealth with the Thief ahead and find out what's coming, searching for traps, disarming, opening locks etc. etc. and then decide my course of action.

 

The main power is placed in the Fighter and Ranger, Wizard most often just hangs out in the back until hordes of enemies or bosses.

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