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I play a caster heavy party, so I'm quite familiar with the different spells available in Pillars of Eternity. However, the number of spells is truly massive, and I can't always figure out what the best way to use them is. I may not even be able to try them all out. 

 

There are some spells I'm quite certain are excellent, and others I'm also pretty confidant are nothing to write home about. Many spells are just question marks to me; although I don't use them, they might actually be quite powerful. So I'd like to ask your opinion about them.

 

I'm actually pretty sure some of them are good, but I just never used them for some reason. Others I have doubts about.

 

Wizard

  1. Thrust of Tattered Veils
  2. Merciless Gaze
  3. Are spells like Iron Skin any good?
  4. Spirit Shield
  5. Arcane Dampner
  6. Arduous Delay of Motion
  7. Wall of Force
  8. Gaze of the Adragan  Just kidding :)

Druid

  1. Autumn's Decay
  2. Blizzard
  3. Insect Swarm
  4. Taste of the Hunt
  5. Beetle Shell
  6. Infestation of Maggots
  7. Wicked Briars
  8. Cleansing Wind
  9. Plague of Insects
  10. Wall of Thorns
  11. Rot Skulls

Priest

  1. Holy Meditation
  2. Iconic Projection
  3. Warding Seal
  4. Watchful Presence
  5. Searing Seal
  6. Shining Beacon
  7. Triumph of the Crusaders
  8. Spark the Souls of the Righteous
Edited by Springwight

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Wizard

 

All you listed are no good or situational, not worth a spell slot. Veil is great if you are up front or need an "oh crap" button, but I don't have it on my backline Mage. Talents needed for wands.

 

Arduous delay of motion is awesome though for wands, especially blights. Really good and worth building character around imho. There is a nice padded armour from dry ford that has one charge and is end game armour for my backline Mage.

 

Merciless gaze is good when spammable.

 

Druid

 

Taste of the hunt might be ok in shape shift form, haven't tried it yet.

 

Beetle she'll is awesome when you have no priest, like me. If you have a priest withdraw is prolly better.

 

Priest

 

Don't know don't care. Pre-buffing doesn't interest me and lesser degrees of what the priest brings to the table can be duplicated by other classes. Can't help sorry

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I'm lazy on in game spell names

 

Wizard

 

If you have a priest, merciless gaze gets overwritten with the AOE 20% crit buff

Thrust of tattered veil - I'm a fan of fast cast spells. I sec interrupt is ok vs casters, but mainly I use it when I'm out of other damage spells or the AoEs I have available will nuke my own party.

 

I don't care for the other wiz spells listed.

 

Druid

 

I like beetleshell because it doesn't take my party member out of combat for a full 30 seconds like withdraw, but I don't run druids.

 

Priests have very good spells imo.

 

Iconic Projection is terrific, fast cast spammable AOE that also heals allies

If Warding Seal is the level 2 aoe knockdown trap, it's also good, very high accuracy long duration prone

 

If you can decipher my spreadsheet chicken scratch, below are the only priest spells I use.

 

ARMOR, BLESS, stuck, withdraw, 15WILL/30CONC, 50vFEAR 3MIG 7RES, KD TRAP, 2.5m burn -25 def, HEAL-DAM COLD BEAM,50vSICK-WEAK, SUPPRESS STATUS 15 DEF 10s, -15 ACC -15CRIT 30s, +20CRIT 30s, REACTIVE HEAL, KD, 50vHOBBLE-STUCK 20 ACC 4 MIG / -20 ACC -10 MIG 30s,10vDAZE-CONFUSE, CH DEATHBLOW, 11DAM/S -10 DEFENSES, BLIND 50vPARALYZE-PETRIFY, 10 Mig/Per 5dt 15s, +10S BUFFS, 25 DEFLECTION 50vCHARM-DOMINATE, +25RES/6INT/6PER, SHOCK AURAS, CLEANSING FLAME 20% weapon damage 8 physical stats, large aoe burn
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I put a ? next to the spells I haven't tried either.

 

Wizard

  1. Thrust of Tattered Veils - ?
  2. Merciless Gaze - I use it on my high level ranged Wizard in a full PoTD party (once it becomes Per Encounter), before Eldritch Aim at the start of the fight, when I'm buffing while I wait for the enemy to come.
  3. Are spells like Iron Skin any good? I used Iron Skin on the solo melee PoTD Wizard I started. 8 DR for several hits seems good, and it did help against certain tough enemies like the bears in the Valewood cave. I haven't played this Wizard since 2.0, but I imagine it may be useful in even more situations now with the Deflection nerf.
  4. Spirit Shield - I mostly just use whatever potions of this I come across. I can take it or leave it. The concentration buff is nice, but the DR buff doesn't do much, especially if you've already prebuffed with Ale or a similar food/drink that grants +2 DR. I generally don't consider it worth a spell slot, but YMMV for certain tough solo fights.
  5. Arcane Dampner - I've found this useful for my party Wizard in fights vs packs of xaurips that buff their whole group including a drake. IDK if the expansion has added any more good uses for it, but in the base game its uses were rare. However, if you're otherwise underpowered vs something like a xaurip pack with champions/drakes, it could make the difference.
  6. Arduous Delay of Motion - ?
  7. Wall of Force - ?
  8. Gaze of the Adragan  Just kidding  :)

Druid

  1. Autumn's Decay - ?
  2. Blizzard - In my high level PoTD party (once it becomes Per Encounter) I definitely use this with Hiravias, generally after Tanglefoot and Nature's Mark. Next I sometimes do the blinding fire one (I forget the name) if there are many and/or powerful enemies within its small radius, and then spam either the level 1 lightning one or Burst of Summer Flame, depending on enemy weaknesses and battlefield positioning. But yes, I find Blizzard useful for its combination of damage and debuff. Druids are good because they can stack on multiple debuffs as I mentioned above, and some like Blizzard also nuke at the same time.
  3. Insect Swarm - I occasionally use this to wear down tough enemies over time (as it's certainly annoying when enemy druids cast it on your party lol!), but if I had to pick one spell for this purpose, it would be Relentless Storm. Though its damage is low each time it ticks, those ticks also have a chance to knock enemies Prone, and the range is great.
  4. Taste of the Hunt - ?
  5. Beetle Shell - The one time I found this useful (and keep in mind 2.0 and the expansion may have opened up more situations due to both nerfs and new content) was fighting Adra Dragon. I used it on the tank, and it's great for this since your tank doesn't have to do anything at this point other than sit there and absorb massive hits.
  6. Infestation of Maggots - ?
  7. Wicked Briars - ?
  8. Cleansing Wind - ?
  9. Plague of Insects - ? ... or am I getting this confused with Insect Swarm? lol it's been a little while.
  10. Wall of Thorns - ?
  11. Rot Skulls - I haven't personally used this, but I've read that it's the highest DPS ranged weapon in the game. Ofc it's a high level spell, so you can't use it on every fight unless you rest a lot. You also will probably still do more DPS spamming low level AoE spells (once they become Per Encounter). I'd find the Wizard's Minor Blights to be more interesting now, since it becomes Per Encounter at level 3.

Priest

 

  1. Holy Meditation - I like this especially at low levels when my party is fighting spirits and things that mind control, and I don't yet have the specific spell to counter that type of CC. Then it becomes potentially useful again at high level (once it becomes Per Encounter), but is fairly low in my priority of buffs/debuffs. Generally I do any specific CC counter spells first, then Holy (Inspiring) Radiance, (Painful and Empowered) Interdiction, Armor of Faith, and maybe even Blessing before I'd get around to Holy Meditation. At this point it may just not be worth it. Priests do eventually get that spell to extend the duration of beneficial effects though, if you feel like just being a buffbot for most/all of the fight lol.
  2. Iconic Projection - Ohhh you need to try this one if you haven't. In some fights, spamming this is better than buffing. Even when it's not, I'll generally be spamming it once I get out all the buffs I'm aiming for.
  3. Warding Seal - I just tend to stick to Repulsing Seal personally, so I haven't given this one a fair shot either.
  4. Watchful Presence - By the time I realized, from what I read from others, that this spell may have some effect after all, I didn't get many chances to use it. One person said they believed it only triggered on the first ally in your party to dip below that endurance threshold. Even so, it may still have its uses, but I'll defer to others to elaborate.
  5. Searing Seal - Again, Repulsing Seal is just so good. This one looks good too, but I have a Cipher, Wizard, and Druid who can all blind too.
  6. Shining Beacon - I haven't given it a fair chance personally, but I've seen a video of a pre-2.0 solo PoTD Adra Dragon priest kill that made heavy use of powerful self buffs, I think Divine Mark, Shining Beacon, and then Cleansing Flame to make those DoTs really hurt. At this point, the dragon was basically left to die on her own, and the player started taking down her adds.
  7. Triumph of the Crusaders - ?
  8. Spark the Souls of the Righteous - Again, I haven't used it personally, but I'm pretty sure the same Adra Dragon solo kill video I saw finished off her adds in part with this spell's help.
Edited by Nobear

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Thrust of Tattered Veils - A Wizard Interrupt build works really well now, but the thing is you'll be using Blast and Interrupting Blows, and not this spell. The other 1st-level spells are too good to justify having this as one of your slots.

Merciless Gaze - A 60 sec crit buff is really good, but I would only run this on high DEX builds and if you don't have a Priest. I'm pretty sure this doesn't stack with Dire Blessing, and you will be using that!

Iron Skin - Its good but generally I'd rather use 4th-level spell slots for Wall of Flame, Essential Phantom and Dimensional Shift. I prefer Spirit Shield instead, which is a 1st-level spell slot.

Spirit Shield - You definitely should use this. The DR is really good plus it gives a Concentration buff, which is useful even for non-melee Wizards.

Arcane Dampener - Enemies with buffs are extremely dangerous in PotD. So yes, this is actually a very important spell.

Arduous Delay of Motion - This cuts the damage enemies deal by 25%, so yes this very good.

Wall of Force - Its not as good as Wall of Flame but its still very good. The damage over time it has is very rapid, in fact it will out damage Fireball by a wide margin. The amount damage this spell can do with Combusting Wounds as well is simply insane.

Autumn's Decay - Its range is terrible and its not very good on high DR enemies, but this is a pretty solid damage dealing spell.

Blizzard - This spell used to be godly, but now its useless thanks to the nerfs. Its not worth casting at all.

Insect Swarm - Its probably the best damage dealing 2nd-level spell. The Concentration debuff is a nice bonus since Interruption builds are much more viable now. Also this doesn't affect allies.

Taste of the Hunt - If you're doing a Shapeshifting build, this is a good spell to heal yourself. Useless for ranged Druids however.

Beetle's Shell - Its alright once 3rd-level spells become per encounter. Before then though, you really should dedicate most 3rd-level spell uses to Returning Storm.

Infestation of Maggots - Its good against high Endurance enemies, but again, Returning Storm. So good.

Wicked Briars - This spell's main worth, is the fact you can cast it outside of battle. Its not a bad spell if you have free 4th-level uses to spare.

Cleansing Wind - Don't have too much experience with this one. The other 5th-spells are so amazing that this gets overlooked.

Plague of Insects - This is the Druid's best damage spell. Its Raw, and it has a long duration. It also has a Concentration debuff. Its a real winner.

Wall of Thorns - So running a Perception-based Druid? Cast Plague of Insects or Insect Swarm and now cast this. This is an amazing Interrupt based spell.

Rot Skulls - This is really good and works with Dangerous Implements. The only thing is, Wizards get a weapon better than this, as a 3rd-level spell. Its still pretty good though, and probably the best 6th-level spell.

Holy Meditation - It buffs Concentration and Will and stacks with other spells. This is best 1st-level spell =/

Iconic Projection - Compared to Restore Light Endurance, which is on the same level, this spell is flat out better. It heals the same amount, but also deals damage to enemies. This spell is quite amazing once you can cast it per encounter.

Warding Seal - It has insane accuracy, but its damage isn't that spectacular. Repulsing Seal is just far better.

Watchful Presence - Its not terrible, but generally the Priest's time is better spent casting other spells than this.

Searing Seal - Same as Warding Seal, its a little better though since Priests should be getting Scion of Flames.

Shining Beacon - This is a deadly debuff spell. Its dangerous when enemies cast it, so its dangerous to them too!

Triumph of the Crusaders - If you're fighting a battle where the enemies die easily, you don't need this spell. In battles where they don't die as easily this spell does nothing. Its not really worth it.

Spark the Souls of the Righteous - Ohohoho, surprised to see this one! This spell is a damage dealing king! With Heart of the Storm this spell is just ridiculous Use it, love it. Its less useful against high DR opponents but its still significant enough to leave a mark.

Edited by Wolken3156

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I play a caster heavy party, so I'm quite familiar with the different spells available in Pillars of Eternity. However, the number of spells is truly massive, and I can't always figure out what the best way to use them is. I may not even be able to try them all out. 

 

There are some spells I'm quite certain are excellent, and others I'm also pretty confidant are nothing to write home about. Many spells are just question marks to me; although I don't use them, they might actually be quite powerful. So I'd like to ask your opinion about them.

 

I'm actually pretty sure some of them are good, but I just never used them for some reason. Others I have doubts about.

 

Wizard

  1. Thrust of Tattered Veils
  2. Merciless Gaze
  3. Are spells like Iron Skin any good?
  4. Spirit Shield
  5. Arcane Dampner
  6. Arduous Delay of Motion
  7. Wall of Force
  8. Gaze of the Adragan  Just kidding :)

1. Nope; too situational. I prefer throwing AOE spells around with a chance of interrupting everybody damaged.

2. Yes. It is great if you have good accuracy. See notes below.

3. Yes. It takes 8 damage off the next 10 attacks that hit you, effectively working as an 80 point damage shield against moderate sized attacks.

4. Yes. A really nice spell for the DR early in the game and concentration later in the game.

5. No. I haven't found any use for the Arcane Dampener; To be fair, sharing as it does the same spell slot as some of my favourite spells: Deleterious Alacrity of Motion, Fireball, and K. Minor Blights, it would have to be pretty awesome for me to even think of using it.

6. No. The same problem as 5.

7. Not really. The most use I've got out of it is its repeated interruption, but the level 4 Wall of Fire is already splendid for setting up a repeated interruption of a bunch of stationary ranged caster/archer enemies.

 

I like playing with a blaster/controller wizard main with min-maxed stats, and for 2.0 that is an elf with 18 mig, 3 con, 19 dex, 16 per, 18 int, 3 res. Good precision, swift and powerful casting, and decent chances to interrupt... but poor concentration. Talents are Blast, Penetrating Blast, Dangerous Implements, and then the elemental booster talents (or Arcane Veil). Body armour is the Berathian Priest robes from Raedric's Hold that have DR2 but only 5% recovery penalty.

 

Once I get access to 3rd level spells, the awesome Deleterious Alacrity of Motion becomes available and many of the buff spells that otherwise seems too situational suddenly become very viable indeed.

 

My normal opener in harder fights (where I turn autopause when ability used on) is thus Deleterious Alactrity of Motion, Infused Vitality, Merciless Gaze. If things look especially dangerous, Spiritual Shield and, once 4th level spells are available, Iron Skin, are cast as needed. All these spells have a very long duration, protecting the wizard from the attention he gets when he blasts away with his spells and - once spells are running low - casts K. Minor Blights and starts throwing blights at any enemies that are close to each other taking full advantage of the funny Blight/Blast synergy so beloved by wizard players. This sort of damageoutput, which no other class can even approach*, tends to make the wizard a prime target, and while Spiritual Shield may only be 3 DR, it really helps against interruption. (If your wizard chooses Resolve over Perception, i.e. high concentration at the cost of low accuracy and interruption, Spiritual Shield is worth less, obviously. But playing a wizard with low precision is only an option on lower difficulty levels).

 

Note that you might run Dire Blessing from a Priest rather than Merciless Gaze, but I usually have much higher priority spells for the priest to cast early in important fights, and when opening with DaOM I can run through the entire wizard buffing list before a priest has completed casting two out of Circle of Protection, Devotions of the Faithful, and Concecrated Ground, all three of which I am likely to want before even thinking of casting Dire Blessing. And a Dire Blessing that is only cast several seconds into the fight when the wizard has already thrown the first five-plus heavy blasting and control spells, while certainly valuable for the rest of the fight, doesn't apply the up-front power that Merciless Gaze does.

 

Which is why my wizard buffs up with Merciless Gaze and I am quite fine with that later being trumped by a Dire Blessing.

 

 

* I am not dissing Druids here. Their AOE is awesome... as in having a great damage/spell slot ratio and many varied options for inflicting pain. And they have shapeshifting and healing, so they certainly aren't second rate in general - only when it comes to damagedealing over time. Lacking access to swift casting, Druids' AOE are a joke compared to wizards when looking at the damage/time ratio, and that is what matters in hard fights. (Of course, if Wizard's didn't have K. Minor Blights using DaOM and blasting away would risk them running out of steam before a huge fight was over, but they do have that spell to cast so long as they reserve a 3rd level slot for that purpose.)

Edited by pi2repsion

When I said death before dishonour, I meant it alphabetically.

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*angrily bursts through the wall*

Watchful presence was my frickin JAM mid-game my first playthrough!

Blizzard is great when you can spam after level 9!

WALL OF FORCE CAN BE USED TO BISECT BIG CLUNKY BOSSES THAT DON'T MOVE MUCH AND DO BOATLOADS OF DAMAGE!!!

*bursts through another wall to leave, screaming*

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