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Shadow Thief Improvements + gMinion


Bursk

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I'd like some opinions on the Shadow Thief Improvements component of the Rogue Rebalancing Pack. I'm going to be doing a one-off multiplayer game with a mate, so want to be certain that I'm installing all the correct mods before we start.

 

I've had a look through the readme and am wondering if it's likely to be too difficult for your average Chapter 3 SoA party. The readme suggests using a party with the minimum of 1 million XP per character. How likely is your party to have this much XP at this stage of the game, assuming you haven't completed every minor quest up until that point? What sort of levels would a party be with 1 million XP per character, and is that the average amount for a party at that stage of the game?

 

I'm going to be using Ding0's Experience Fixer in this manner:

 

Spells - 0XP

Thief stuff - 50%

Quest XP - 50%

Combat XP - 75%

 

So I don't want to side with Bodhi and then find that the Shadow Thieves are kicking my buttocks. Opinions would be very welcome.

 

On an unrelated matter, I've heard good things about the gMinion 'mod'. It looks good but very complicated (I don't really understand all the tech jargon). I need to know at what point I should install it in my mod install order.

 

Here's my current mod install order. Note that I'm only installing certain parts of some mods:

 

Ease-of-Use [FIRST]

Expanded Thief Stronghold

Item Value Tweaks

Improved Horns of Valhalla

Rogue Rebalancing Pack

Dungeon-Be-Gone

Banter Packs

Better Time Stop Description

CliffKey

Ascension

Solaufein

Kelsey SoA

Kelsey ToB

Kelsey - Getting Rid of Anomen

Kelsey - Improved Paperdoll

Keto

Alora

Saerileth

NPC Tweak

Berserker Minsc

Quest Pack

Tactics

Unfinished Business

Mix Mod

The Bigg Tweaks

Miscellaneous Tweak Pack

Oversight

G3 Tweak Pack

Ashes of Embers

Song and Silence

Refinements

Ding0 Experience Fixer

One Pixel Productions [LAST]

 

I currently have four files relating to gMinion: Detectable Spells, eSeries, gMinion and Scriptable Spells. In what order should I install these four files? Are all four parts fully compatible with all my other mods (I'm sure they are but want to double-check)?

 

Also, I'm currently using Tactics' Göran Rimén's Improved Nymphs; should I continue to use this alongside gMinion? And, does gMinion also work with Tutu? If so, at what point during the Tutu mod install order should I install them?

 

Sorry for the long post! If it's unclear, let me know and I'll try to clarify.

 

Thanks,

 

Bursk

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I think gMinion is just a series of scripts for your party to use, so install whenever...

 

Detectable Spells is again something related to modding and scripting, as opposed to any new content you'll se in the game. :)

 

I'd also put Ease-Of-Use and G3 Tweaks right at the end.

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eSeries are scripts used to control your party characters. As stated in the readme, it requires Detectable and Scriptable Spells. Although install order is not mentioned, and thus probably doesn't matter, I would install these two first then eSeries.

 

gMinion are scripts used to control your monster summons. As stated in the readme, it requires only Scriptable Spells. Although install order is not mentioned, and thus probably doesn't matter, I would install it first then gMinion.

 

eSeries is an excellent concept. I micromanage my party too much to use them.

 

gMinion, I never leave BG without 'em, because of its features. From the readme:

* No Turning Hostile: Minions do NOT have free-will according to purist D&D rules

* Players choices will ALWAYS override the script

* Minions will return unfailingly to the caster if ever they find themselves more than a few feet away in a non-combat situation

* Minions will form up behind the caster, and follow them without needing to be ordered to until a higher priority action takes over

o Being given an order

o Seeing an enemy

o etc.

* Minions will no longer carelessly use their spells (the Efreet comes to mind) so that the party is caught in the splash radius

* Cast-n-Attack - minions will make the best use of every second of every round by attacking in the 5 second downtime. This makes spell casting minions much more effective.

* Better Targeting - Minions will now selectively chose their foes according to the same algorithm that gSeries uses.

* Improved Combat Effectiveness - Even the humble Kobold Archer, and Ogre didn't go untouched, they now have better targeting, quicker responses and better consistency with the attacks per round they should have had.

 

One of the features, minions marching orders, is very annoying, as I would often like them to stay put wherever I place them. (Wish someone would fix that. Actually, this kind of behavior was supposedly removed in a Tactics component. Gotta do more research to confirm.) Yet, I forebear for all of the other goodies.

 

You don't need Improved Nymphs if using gMinion because they do the same thing. I think.

 

gMinion install order:

You want to insure that it is installed after mods that also install behaviour scripts that you don't want, and BEFORE mods which have scripts that you want to use.

 

For example. I want to override nearly every minion behaviour script in Weimer's Item Upgrade, but I want the behaviour changes in Smarter Illusionary Clones from SimDing0's Tweak Mod. So my install order would be this:

 

Weimer's Item Upgrade

Detectable Spells

Scriptable Spells

eSeries

gMinion

SimDing0's Tweak Mod

 

TuTu: Yes, gMinion works with TuTu. Simply install your BG2 mods as usually, and install Tutu as normal. It will pick up the BG2 mod changes.

 

gMinion known issues:

- Kitthix or the Improved version, Cerebus the Moon Dog figurine, and possibly some other creature-items cause a crash-to-desktop due to some incompatibility either between gMinion and some other mod, or due to something else. :)

In the end, it just means you shouldn't use these items. A shame, but small loss.

 

- Annoying minions marching order. Live with it - their behaviour was worse before these scripts.

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I'd also put Ease-Of-Use and G3 Tweaks right at the end.

Has Ease of Use updated its code then? If not there is no reason to install it at the end. In fact I have found that the romance fixes are better installed before other mods that might alter the romancable NPCs' scripts.

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Thanks for the replies, everyone.

 

Shame no-one has any feedback on the Shadow Thief Improvements, but that's only a secondary concern.

 

The reason I install Ease-of-Use first is because Weimer says to on his website:

 

'The Ease-of-Use Mod works with (or without) all other WeiDU mods. See the Solaufein installation instructions for details (and Mac installation instructions). Install Ease-of-Use first.'

 

Here's the EoU components I'm using:

 

True Grand Mastery

Shut Up "You Must Gather Your Party ..."

Multi Player Kick-Out Patch

Invisible Cloak of Mirroring/Spell Trap

Bonus Merchants

Keep Drizzt's Loot, Disable Malchor Harpell

No Drow Avatars on Party in Underdark

Imoen ToB Dialogue Fix

Female Edwina

Romance: Bug Fixes

Happy: NPCs Won't Fight Each Other or Leave

Low Reputation Store Discount

 

I was wondering about Improved Horns of Valhalla being installed before gMinion. If I do this, will I still get the summons from the Improved Horns and the new AI for the Berserker Warriors? I'm sure I'm getting the new AI because the warriors keep close to me when I move.

 

Tactics' Improved Nymphs used to automatically cast Mass Heal before being unsummoned; the gMinion ones don't.

 

Some items are crashing my game when used in combat: the Black Spider Figurine, the Golden Lion Figurine and the Moon Dog Figurine. The various Horns of Valhalla and the Jade Hound seem to be okay.

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I'm not sure what you want to know about the Shadow Thief Improvements. Yes, it will "be too difficult for your average Chapter 3 SoA party"; NO, it won't be for the very experienced SoA/ToB players. Remember, there are players who take on Improved Ilyich straight at the start of Chapter One. If you're not part of the NO group, don't side with Bodhi or don't install the improvements.

 

There are other reasons why Ease of Use should go later. One is that it apparently corrects an incompatiability with Unfinished Business, thus should be installed after UB. Posts by users are a better source for determinig correct install order. Unfortunately, the info can be confusing and sometimes wrong. :gasp:

 

As already described above, doesn't matter which is installed first, Improved Horns or gMinion. The only thing that Horns adds is the creature files for the Berserkers - no AI (doesn't even touch the horns' ITM files). You could play Improved Horns by itself, but without gMinion the Berserkers would use the game's default AI.

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There are other reasons why Ease of Use should go later. One is that it apparently corrects an incompatiability with Unfinished Business, thus should be installed after UB. Posts by users are a better source for determinig correct install order. Unfortunately, the info can be confusing and sometimes wrong.

 

Thanks, Azazello. Do you think you could eleborate on this supposed incompatiability?

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Ease of Use...

 

From Release 24:

* Merchants: Now use EXTEND instead of Copying. Thanks, Icelus.

Apparently this fixes a compatibility problem with the Unfinished

Business mod.

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Ease of Use...

 

From Release 24:

        * Merchants: Now use EXTEND instead of Copying. Thanks, Icelus.

          Apparently this fixes a compatibility problem with the Unfinished

          Business mod.

 

Ah, so the problem has been sorted. I may as well keep EoU are the first installed mod, then.

 

Thanks a lot.

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I'm not sure what you want to know about the Shadow Thief Improvements. Yes, it will "be too difficult for your average Chapter 3 SoA party"; NO, it won't be for the very experienced SoA/ToB players. Remember, there are players who take on Improved Ilyich straight at the start of Chapter One. If you're not part of the NO group, don't side with Bodhi or don't install the improvements.

Sorry, just saw this thread. Yeah, I'm one of the people who can be sufficiently anal to take on Improved Ilyich--granted, I've softened the mod down a bit. And I also have to use a fair amount of cheese (but then, who doesn't?), but the point is, I've never even installed Dungeon-be-gone. With a good PC, I can beat all of Chateau Irenicus without Resting or Reloading.

 

Shadow Thief Improvements was too difficult for me.

 

Truly. It's harder than all but the most ridiculous of the Tactics components. I only tackled it once, with my Chaotic party: Hemorrhoids, my CN Wild Mage, Jan, Haer'Dalis, Valygar (or was it Minsc?), Korgan, and CN Anomen. Having read the warning in the README, we did every quest open to us in Chapters 1-3. I forget just how much EXP we had, but we certainly had the phat lewt. And we got our asses kicked.

 

First issue is their scripting: Even the supposedly low-level guards outside are able to locate your PC with the greatest of ease--even though you're Invisible, inside a building, on the other side of the Docks District. Fighting these guys turned out to be impossible; in the end I resorted to having Hemorrhoids cast Protection from Fire on himself, then cast Incendiary Cloud and grip the Staff of the Magi while all the guards clustered around him.

And let's not forget the Thieves inside Aran's lair who cannot be detected by any means until they land their Backstab. A good job, that.

 

Second issue is their stats/equipment: We're talking Kensai->Thieves, Assassin->Fighters, and Thief/Mages, all with stats that you just WISH you could find on recruitable NPCs. But what's even more annoying is all the legal and extremely cool items that are denied to the player: Wands of Paralyzation with only one charge, Arrows of Detonation fired by people standing on inaccessible platforms, etc.

 

Third issue is their number: As soon as you enter Aran's Lair, you find yourself in a pitched battle that can only be won by exhausting more than half of all your good spells & abilities. There are at least three more such fights on this level. You have to clear the entire level before you can get to Aran Linvail, and until you kill Aran, you cannot leave, and you cannot Rest. Oh, and Aran himself? Insta-chunked Korgan on the first swing, why do you ask?

 

Summary: Do NOT install Shadow Thief Improvements if you think there is a chance you might ever again want to work for Bodhi. Hemorrhoids's party was able to beat it with only a minimum of cheating: We twice CLUA'd ourselves out of the area to Rest.

 

 

I have NO idea what gMinion is all about, wheeee!

 

[EDIT:] Kensai->Thieves, not Kensai->Mages.

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