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Splicer_777

Criticism of SCS mod

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23 minutes ago, Splicer_777 said:

Yeah I really wanted an archer. Valygar only gets 2 points in bow proficiency, I have him using that bow that the dwarf blacksmith makes, the bow that shoots limitless lightning arrows...

I wish I could have brought in Corwin from SoD... yeah that game sucks (wish I had skipped it) but I really like the Archer class and wish I could have one in my party.

However I will never have a gnome in my party. I'm racist against gnomes

Btw, is a fighter with a +4 crossbow more effective than in melee with a +2 longsword?

with one of SCS's components you can easily make anyone (like Valygar) into any class, including Archer.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, DavidW said:

You have a remarkable talent for making up claims about the game and speaking them with authority. Lots of liches in the unmodded game, including lich01, have Improved Invisibility memorized, and pretty much every lich script in the unmodded game casts protective spells of 5th level or lower.

Well, where is the script part that casts the spell ? No where, not in mage18d.bcs at least, nor in wtasight.bcs, which are the only scripts assigned. They do cast the shadowdoor they have, but it's a 5th level... and the red fireshield, which is a 4th. But the game doesn't really have other options to counter the insects, so we can forgive it that. And vocalize, which is the same exception... presumambly.

The firelich doesn't have even memorized the II, and there's a few others.

2 hours ago, Hoverdawg said:

with one of SCS's components you can easily make anyone (like Valygar) into any class, including Archer.

No you can't. The Level 1 NPCs mod is different from the SCS component... install both and you get a box full of chocolate. As in, it's very bad idea. Yes, you could use the SCS component, invite them to the party, and save, exit the game and change their kits via a ..Keeper etc... and start the game and level them up. But not alone, with the SCS component.

Edited by Jarno Mikkola

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3 hours ago, Hoverdawg said:

with one of SCS's components you can easily make anyone (like Valygar) into any class, including Archer.

Ranged sucks blue balls in BG2. Only useful archer is Mazzy killing Fire Giants offscreen with Gesen bow for free xp. For Valygar much better option is Wizard Slayer Rebalancing - Relieved Wizard Slayer-->Make Valygar a Wizard Slayer. Well, he is the best archer, thats the thing, the best archer is fighter, especially using throwing axes instead of bows or crossbows, true story. Can mess up mages pretty good by simply switching to normal weapons and using his special ability. He can use Azuredge like a boss, quicksave-enter-pause-throw-unpause=dead lich.

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13 hours ago, Lilaina said:

Some quick tips for dealing with enemy mages you can't dispel for whatever reason:

1. Send in summons, let them absorb all the most dangerous spells and deal with the mage afterwards. Works well against lone enemies especially in early to mid game.

2. Send in a fully buffed fighter->mage, bard, M/T, or F/M to tank the mage. Even if you can't damage them, just keep spell immunity/spellshield up until the enemy's protection from magic weapons/mantle etc have run out.

3. Throw a cloudkill or two on top of them. It will keep interrupting them and the damage alone will usually kill them pretty quickly. Especially useful against enemy parties and during ambushes. The wands are especially OP for this.

4. Backstabs are sometimes an option; I don't think it's cheating to scout ahead and do so when possible.

5. Insect plague destroys casters without fire shield.

Access to lvl 7 spell slots in order to deal with liches is the single biggest roadblock that SCS throws at the player but I don't think it's unreasonable to assume that the party has at least one pure or dual classed mage who will reach the necessary level reasonably fast. Anti-undead weapons and in ToB, Turn Undead, are also options, although admittedly pretty cheesy.

Even at 1.5x power the inquisitor dispel is incredibly powerful as long as the target doesn't have Spell immunity: Abjuration.

You can kite the demon and detect at the same time, or just tank it with someone else. Not being able to attack or cast anything is a pretty good trade for what the skill does imo. And Jan shouldn't be your only arcane caster anyway 😛 

Shadowdancers are also especially nice for this since they can do the mini time stop and dispel all illusions immediately and safely.

In SCS on max difficulty all that will not work so great because enemy will use Improved Aclarity+Timestop - Comet, Dragons Breath, Abu Dalzim, Reload or Ragequit.

except point 4. for example sneaking under haste on Tolgerias on crack and chunking him via backstab before he can flood you with Glabrezus, Planetars and Cornugons is the best cheat, ooops, hehe I mean option.

btw. Timestop plus Summon Dark/Planetar near the most squishy Jan, Aerie or Viccy (always) is a dick move to be honest, I would kinda complain.

 

 

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@Splicer_777
Have you seriously considered lowering the difficulty if you've felt stuck?  Sometimes, this is all that's needed to succeed.

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2 hours ago, Jarno Mikkola said:
5 hours ago, Hoverdawg said:

with one of SCS's components you can easily make anyone (like Valygar) into any class, including Archer.

No you can't

Yes you can.

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Guest Ludwig

I recently finished my second solo full BG1+SOD+BG2 playthrough using Hardcore SCS. I'm in no way an expert, and I had some difficulties in some parts for sure, but it was never impossible to progress. That's exactly what I wanted, trying to find solutions for every encounter, and SCS allows you to do just that.

I used Dragon Disciple in my first run, and an Assassin in my second run. Both solo as I said, and I haven't used any Console commands contrary to your claim Jarno. So, you actually don't have to play a mage char just to finish it on Hardcore SCS. I believe if I took the difficulty even further up to Insane or if I allowed SCS Mages to use HLAs, I probably wouldn't be able to finish it. But that's the awesome part of it, I have the option to customise it with SCS

I believe some of the criticism here just shows SCS was not meant for you (the OP), and I definitely agree it wouldn't be for everyone. Because I don't think it suits a person who just wants to get on with it, play the game and progress without any issues. Trying to overcome the challenges the game throws at you is the whole reason I play the game multiple times, and the reason I use this mod.

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5 hours ago, InKal said:

Timestop plus Summon Dark/Planetar near the most squishy Jan, Aerie or Viccy (always) is a dick move to be honest, I would kinda complain.

Please hold. We are experiencing exceptionally long delays due to the suspension of the flow of time in your vicinity. Your complaint is important to us. One of our Dark Planetar operatives will be with you as soon as normal time flow resumes.

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4 hours ago, Guest Ludwig said:

I used Dragon Disciple in my first run, and an Assassin in my second run. Both solo as I said, and I haven't used any Console commands contrary to your claim Jarno. So, you actually don't have to play a mage char just to finish it on Hardcore SCS.

DD, is a sorcerer kit... so a specialist mage, "you are a wizard Harry, you are a wizard". And the assassin is only able to do this probably because they have UAI HLA, to use the scrolls. Meaning you need 1 980 000 xp... , and disarm traps to get that, yes I can see it now.

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8 hours ago, InKal said:

In SCS on max difficulty all that will not work so great because enemy will use Improved Aclarity+Timestop - Comet, Dragons Breath, Abu Dalzim, Reload or Ragequit.

except point 4. for example sneaking under haste on Tolgerias on crack and chunking him via backstab before he can flood you with Glabrezus, Planetars and Cornugons is the best cheat, ooops, hehe I mean option.

btw. Timestop plus Summon Dark/Planetar near the most squishy Jan, Aerie or Viccy (always) is a dick move to be honest, I would kinda complain.

Depends on version/difficulty. I play on "super insane" i.e. only select spell casters in SoA get HLAs and everyone does in ToB, so Irenicus in Spellhold is the 1st such caster in my game. My tips were for early to midgame which is the hardest part of the game imo, since you don't have access to high level spells and other tools yet.

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Posted (edited)

Here are my thoughts on Splicer's criticism (I've played and playtested SCS since loooong ago, but hadn't touched BG2 in the past few years, until I dug it out during Coronavirus quarantine).

As Jastey and DavidW said, the text-string bugs are almost certainly due to closing the Weidu executable mid install, never do that.

The final battle of SoA with SCS indeed frustrates many new players; without two mages (or one mage with Improved Alacrity, and since your only mage is Aerie she'd need 6 million XP to cast it) you will have great difficulty interrupting Irenicus's Time Stops, and this is one place where you really need to interrupt Time Stops to reliably avoid getting characters (perma) killed. Encounters which demand a certain party composition to succeed without save-scumming and reloading are not my favourite, either. If you didn't install Ascension the battles will get easier from here.

In 2nd edition Time Stop is supposed to last 1d3 rounds, personally I think it should be three rounds only when cast by a single class mage or sorcerer, two rounds for cleric/mages and one round for everyone else including fighter/mages and rogues using scrolls, this would also nerf this spell's abusability by the player.

Holy Word might also work to disrupt Irenicus's Time Stops, especially 2X Holy Word from a priest and their Simulacrum if you have Vhailor's helm. Unfortunately, your only single class cleric is Viconia who can't cast that, and it's not reliable anyway due to his magic resistance (and if you can strip his magic resistance with eg. Pierce Magics under Alacrity then following up with an immediate Power Word: Blind is likely a better choice anyway).

Valygar isn't meant to be used as an archer, that's likely why you find him ineffective, he's a good backstabber (and does good teamwork with Keldorn, backstabbing mages after their Stoneskins are dispelled) and a good flanker for dealing damage, although his poor armour class and lowish hp means he shouldn't be up front taking hits, not until he gets HLAs and can stack Hardiness with Armor of Faith. He can also protect himself with Minor Spell Deflection against most single-target spells, which includes most Save or Die magic. On the subject of Keldorn, even with the nerf to Inquisitor dispel magic it's useful, at 10th level he has a 50% chance to dispel 15th level mages, including Yuan-Ti mages who are often quite deadly for a low-level party and usually appear in packs.

On 6/29/2020 at 2:31 AM, DavidW said:

You have a very melee-focussed party, which is challenging in SCS - Aerie is your only wizard, and her multiclassing starts to impose a painful restriction on spell numbers by ToB. You probably want to be using her wizard spells mostly for countering enemy spells.

 

Agreed about Aerie but I've found melee-heavy parties to be very effective with SCS, they're viable at low levels because enemy mages at this point in the game focus on debuffing and disabling spells, if you can fan a (hasted) party out the moment you see the swirling golden graphic that indicates a mage is casting an Enchantment then you can usually avoid more than one warrior being disabled, with the remainder hopefully preventing the mage from completing a second spell. Not to mention fighters lose less from a Remove Magic than casters (prior to Spell Immunity). Melee power is also important in encounters with mid to high level mages because they usually rely on their summoned demons and Dark Planetars to kill you, if those are chopped up fast enough then things become much easier.

My last party, playing with a maximal install of SCS + Item Randomizer was as follows: PC Invoker, fighter/mage/cleric, dual classed swashbuckler -> fighter, duelist and dreadnought (Prestige kitpack kits, but could easily be subbed for a vanilla kensai and cavalier). All humans except for the half-elf F/M/C so no racial save bonuses, and light on clerical defensive buffs, but made it all the way to mid ToB with no reloads or even party members needing to be raised from the dead (although the duelist was imprisoned a couple of times by liches), had already defeated Yaga and Demogorgon when I got my invoker killed by the demilich on the way out of Watcher's Keep. Fin, but surprisingly the easiest run up until then, considering I had only one pure mage and she wasn't a sorcereress, at that.

Edited by polytope
typos, or is that typoes?

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Guest Ludwig
5 hours ago, Jarno Mikkola said:

DD, is a sorcerer kit... so a specialist mage, "you are a wizard Harry, you are a wizard". And the assassin is only able to do this probably because they have UAI HLA, to use the scrolls. Meaning you need 1 980 000 xp... , and disarm traps to get that, yes I can see it now.

My next run is with a Cleric/Ranger, and I'm confident I will still be able to finish this too. But it has yet to happen so I can't say for certain. Pure fighter classes would be hard yes, but there are still quite a bit of options here, you're not limited to only mages. Also, another great thing about SCS is the changes on Priest spell system, which is the main reason I'm playing with this char and the main reason I'm confident I will be able to finish the game with it. Just to clarify, I also use other tweaks to make the game harder like earning only %25 of all experience just so that my char is not overleveled. 

I actually have one criticism to DavidW as well (not really criticism, more of a suggestion/request, but just trying to keep my post in context). When I was doing my Assassin run, it was very frustrating when an enemy spellcaster randomly casts Maze. Maze spell conceptually should just make my char wait and then come back, however when I play solo unfortunately it straight away ends the game. I know this is not related to SCS, but would it possible to have a solution to this implemented in SCS?

Thanks

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3 hours ago, Guest Ludwig said:

My next run is with a Cleric/Ranger, and I'm confident I will still be able to finish this too. But it has yet to happen so I can't say for certain. Pure fighter classes would be hard yes, but there are still quite a bit of options here, you're not limited to only mages. Also, another great thing about SCS is the changes on Priest spell system, which is the main reason I'm playing with this char and the main reason I'm confident I will be able to finish the game with it. Just to clarify, I also use other tweaks to make the game harder like earning only %25 of all experience just so that my char is not overleveled. 

I actually have one criticism to DavidW as well (not really criticism, more of a suggestion/request, but just trying to keep my post in context). When I was doing my Assassin run, it was very frustrating when an enemy spellcaster randomly casts Maze. Maze spell conceptually should just make my char wait and then come back, however when I play solo unfortunately it straight away ends the game. I know this is not related to SCS, but would it possible to have a solution to this implemented in SCS?

Thanks

IIRC, SCS mages will absolutely refuse to cast Imprisonment on the main character due to there not being any decent counter to the spell and it ending the game immediately - suppose Maze suffers from the same problem if you're solo-ing.

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37 minutes ago, Bartimaeus said:

IIRC, SCS mages will absolutely refuse to cast Imprisonment on the main character due to there not being any decent counter to the spell and it ending the game immediately - suppose Maze suffers from the same problem if you're solo-ing.

Charm does as well.

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