Hello there!

Discussions related to character builds and mechanics may occur here.

Moderators: Active DMs, Forum Moderators

Post Reply
DreadArtemis
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:53 am

Hello there!

Post by DreadArtemis » Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am

First of all hello everyone! I have been playing for a few weeks just messing around with some characters enjoying Skal and some of the random stuff that goes on there. I was playing primarily NWN2 servers, but saw the numbers here and enjoy interacting with more people.
Ok this is a build forum so....

I was interested in building a paladin. I had read on the of the recent posts about two handed paladins and figured it would be something fun to play. I already have a melee character but figured with the two hand divine might it could be fun.
My specific questions would be:
1. Is a two handed build playable at high levels with mostly paladin levels to keep caster level non dispellable?
2. Is there enough end game equipment to maintain a respectable AC that is sustainable. I mean not like uber AC but at least so I wont vomit in my mouth every time theres a pack of enemies?
3. Is the damage two handed decent with a strength build? I suppose I could splash 4 levels of fighter to nab weapon spec and epic weapon spec. Is it even worth it to specialize or should I just switch between sword and board and two hander as needed?
4. Is combat expertise the end all be all? I read quite a few builds including the cookie cutter ones and want to know if it is necessary to take. Is it something that I will kick myself if I don't dump the points into Intelligence?
Thanks again. I understand there is another thread on some related questions I just want some further insight. Looking forward to meeting more of you in game!

User avatar
Opustus
Posts: 527
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 9:07 pm

Re: Hello there!

Post by Opustus » Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:12 am

I guess a basic Pally23/Fighter4/Rogue3 or Bard3 is your pony with Exotic weapon proficiency for Bastard sword. Bastard sword can be two-handered by simply unequipping your shield. Currently, it also grants *1.5 damage for Divine might, and although it might get removed, it won't have a big effect on the character. Here's the blueprint for your everyday Paladin build from the Discord build-dump channel, courtesy of dejapes https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hgJ ... c329A/edit

The abjuration focuses count toward the dispel of your Holy sword (a level 4 paladin spell) and with the Shield spell off a wand or potion, they will also protect you from Lesser and Greater magic missile storms, which are quite common on the server. I cannot speak for the effectiveness of the dispel.

You could drop Knockdown or the Abjuration focuses as you would need to make room for the Exotic proficiency feat, but I'd wait for someone with more experience to pitch in. Another good feat consideration for Paladin is Extend spell, because it lets you cast Extended Divine favour, which is +5 AB and damage.

The Expertise feats are held in high regard here, although it remains a mystery to me as well as to why they are so absolutely mandatory. (Is it because mobs tend to have low AC but high AB? Dunno!)
Carry your bag in a sea of stories
To her mainland in Caesarea
Fly the flag of your borrowed glories
Till the west end of Old Sofia

StrykerMontgomery
Posts: 371
Joined: Thu Dec 10, 2015 10:14 pm

Re: Hello there!

Post by StrykerMontgomery » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:25 am

The fact that it is toggable on the fly and csn give ac when you are standing around not even attacking anything makes it king. Also like 55 ac or something is some special sweet nunber that lets you walk through things end game content.

Two hand build without expertise is silly especially since if you insist in using a geatsword, you get bonus 2 ab. If you are smart there are areas you can do solo around a l bit past lvl 20ish with a little less thn 40 ac but for most end gsme content,unless you have someone protecting you, you want the capacity to break that 50 ac line.
Currently played characters:
Have not played for over a year, thinking of returning again

User avatar
Commissar
Posts: 285
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2015 12:48 pm
Location: Australia

Re: Hello there!

Post by Commissar » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:27 am

Hello!
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
1. Is a two handed build playable at high levels with mostly paladin levels to keep caster level non dispellable?
Playable? Yes. Would I recommend it? Probably not. This thread has some far more build-savy people than me discussing why, but the general gist is that there are other classes that do two-handed, and do it better than a paladin build can.
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
2. Is there enough end game equipment to maintain a respectable AC that is sustainable. I mean not like uber AC but at least so I wont vomit in my mouth every time theres a pack of enemies?
Yes, but it's all relative. Adamantine is usually the end-game armor for paladins; but you also have access to Templar armour - which is a fair bit easier to get, and only 1AC lower than adamantine. Enemies in high level dungeons will still hit you if you aren't using wands, etc, to shore it up usually. This is part of why expertise and improved expertise are so handy to have - they let you tank effectively (even better, with divine shield active).
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
3. Is the damage two handed decent with a strength build? I suppose I could splash 4 levels of fighter to nab weapon spec and epic weapon spec. Is it even worth it to specialize or should I just switch between sword and board and two hander as needed?
It's absolutely worth it to specialise. The bonus feats you get on fighter levels will also let you pick up several feats that you'll want to have and would otherwise struggle to fit - such as power attack, which is a prerequisite for divine might and divine shield.
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
4. Is combat expertise the end all be all? I read quite a few builds including the cookie cutter ones and want to know if it is necessary to take. Is it something that I will kick myself if I don't dump the points into Intelligence?
Short Answer: Yes. Without Improved Expertise, you'll struggle to tank without getting your most righteous face kicked in. Besides, you're not dumping those points in INT. You'll need them for discipline, heal, tumble, UMD, and spellcraft! And taunt, if you've got the points to spare.
May you live in interesting times.
Manticore, on Sun Elves wrote:Yeah, I'm pretty sure the racism is like a mating ritual or something. Like plumes on birds.

User avatar
Elaetheus
Arelith Silver Supporter
Arelith Silver Supporter
Posts: 63
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:50 pm

Re: Hello there!

Post by Elaetheus » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:52 am

About that damage... The problem of NWN1 vs NWN2 is that there you have two-handed weapons with scimitar-like crit range (scimitar itself, two-handed, or falchion). What happens as a result is that a one-handed scimitar paladin dishes out like 80-90% damage of a greatsword paladin. Add to it the fact that NWN1's RNG is prone to silly streaks (so that you will roll 11-13 for like 20 minutes with no going into crit range of a longsword)... I of course understand the aesthetic appeal though!

If you are making a classic all-around paladin, you are thus better with a one-hander. A two-handed build should be a bit more specific, say the mentioned Glace Canon in that tread you spoke of. Making a lvl 40 great smiter on a scythe used to be a thing back in the days on some servers, but I am not sure how viable it is in lvl-30 environments.

I personally think that one could try reworking 2handed weapons by adding things like : with each weapon focus you get also an equal amount of (shield) AC with the selected weapon. Maybe that should not work on some classes, and maybe that should mean taking away the +2AB that we currently have.

NWN is hardly actual sword combat, but XV century level plate armour warriors barely needed shields in one-on-one close combat. Things were about knowing to hit weakspots and moving fast enough. I would hope it gets reflected in the game mechanics in some way.

Jack Oat
Posts: 501
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2014 3:46 am
Location: Cordor Public Bathhouse

Re: Hello there!

Post by Jack Oat » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:56 am

DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
First of all hello everyone! I have been playing for a few weeks just messing around with some characters enjoying Skal and some of the random stuff that goes on there.
Welcome to the server.
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
1. Is a two handed build playable at high levels with mostly paladin levels to keep caster level non dispellable?
Yes and no. On Arelith 21+ Paladin levels grants +3 to CL vs. Dispels. No in that a two-handed Paladin won't be particularly viable for reasons discussed in this thread. As stated in that thread and by Opustus, bastard sword is more or less the way to go. Or Dwarven Waraxe. Both offer -twohand, which allows you to get the 1.5x STR and CHA modifiers to damage but without the +2 AB that 2h weapons offer on Arelith.
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
2. Is there enough end game equipment to maintain a respectable AC that is sustainable. I mean not like uber AC but at least so I wont vomit in my mouth every time theres a pack of enemies?
Not if you go 2h, but as 1h you should be fine. Yes.
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
3. Is the damage two handed decent with a strength build? I suppose I could splash 4 levels of fighter to nab weapon spec and epic weapon spec. Is it even worth it to specialize or should I just switch between sword and board and two hander as needed?
As Opustus linked, the most common (and IMO best) Paladin-heavy build is the 23 Paladin/4 Fighter/3 Rogue build. STR builds dominate in damage, yes. Fighter is a great dip in this case for the extra damage. Six damage per hit isn't something to ignore.
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
...Is [Expertise] something that I will kick myself if I don't dump the points into Intelligence?
Yes, but for two reasons. The first is skill points, which you arguably don't really get a lot of on that build to fit many extra things. The second I'll outline below.


And now for a section that I feel deserves its own response:
DreadArtemis wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:06 am
4. Is combat expertise the end all be all? I read quite a few builds including the cookie cutter ones and want to know if it is necessary to take.
Opustus wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:12 am
The Expertise feats are held in high regard here, although it remains a mystery to me as well as to why they are so absolutely mandatory. (Is it because mobs tend to have low AC but high AB? Dunno!)
To me, they are absolutely essential for most every melee build. The only exceptions are the spattering of builds that can deal over 950 damage in a round on a point target, of which there are only three (two of which get Expertise/Improved Expertise).

Here's why:
1) Expertise/Improved Expertise allow you to easily serve as a tank for whatever party you find yourself in if the party needs it. Have a Warlock or Rogue who does great damage, but is a bit on the squishy side? Throw them on -guard and superglue them to your hip from 3 to 30.
2) E/IE allow you to throw up a hasty defense if you need time to calculate/do something/heal, both for PvE and PvP. This means that instead of spending time staring at the NPC in the Fugue, you can forget his name when you're writing responses on the forums because you don't die enough to know it.
3) As Opustus speculated, there are a number of PvE areas where mobs have low AC and high AB. Especially as a higher AB character, finding a spot like that shouldn't be hard and can be extremely rewarding if you can push up the AC to grind there-- which you can using E/IE.
4) In PvP, E/IE can allow you to target low-AC enemies without getting shredded if they have med/good AB, it can allow you to survive burst abilities more easily and outheal the incoming damage, and it can act as a great opening stance to gauge a foe's AB/damage output. Especially as a Paladin with Taunt as a skill to drop enemy AC by 6, having the ability to get free AC is too good to pass up.

Ultimately it does come down to personal preference and playstyle, but those builds are listed as cookie-cutter for a reason: they're templates primarily designed for newer players. Different people have different playstyles, and for many new players it's better to give them the toolbox and let them discover what works/doesn't work for them than just throwing them in and watching them fail.
Kuma wrote:i love haks
i have a high rpr
cogito erget rekt
DM Spyre wrote:It's Jack. What do you expect?
perstij wrote:monk r balanc n gud clas

Alox
Posts: 74
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:23 pm

Re: Hello there!

Post by Alox » Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:36 pm

IE is mostly for PVE content, but can be handy in PVP too.

In PVE content you spend most of the time fighting, and if you have to heal all the time, you need a huge amount of healing items with you, as resting is not something you can do often.

Hence, to be a viable tank you need to avoid getting hit altogether. End game mobs have around 40ish AB, so to reach this goal you need to get near 60 AC. Arguably mid 50ies will be fine for most content. 60 AC is really hard to get, even when buffed (apart from a few specialist builds), so you kinda need IE to be able to achieve this.

At the same time, mobs are not too hard to hit. AB of 40 will serve you really well, you can even get away with lower AB many places. As 45 AB is not too hard to reach (make sure you get +10 AB or more from your stats) you can even deal out decent damage while running with IE on.

IE is not that great in PVP as the 6 seconds wait to turn it on mid fight is a long time in PVP, and as a melee you want high AB for knock down. Though having it on when the fight starts might be a good idea, as you can instantly turn it off. Also -guard doesn't work in PVP so no reason to glue to a mage with IE on.

User avatar
Opustus
Posts: 527
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2017 9:07 pm

Re: Hello there!

Post by Opustus » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:33 pm

Thanks for the clarification, Jack Oat and Alox! I see what you mean.
Carry your bag in a sea of stories
To her mainland in Caesarea
Fly the flag of your borrowed glories
Till the west end of Old Sofia

User avatar
Wytchee
Arelith Silver Supporter
Arelith Silver Supporter
Posts: 876
Joined: Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:37 pm

Re: Hello there!

Post by Wytchee » Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:37 pm

At first I thought this was gonna be a cheeky thread asking how to build Obi-Wan.
Current character: Abigail Duskwood

User avatar
-XXX-
Posts: 469
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:49 am

Re: Hello there!

Post by -XXX- » Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:46 pm

Obi-Wan's greatest error was not having the high ground or a shield when confronting Vader for the second time

DreadArtemis
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:53 am

Re: Hello there!

Post by DreadArtemis » Tue Aug 14, 2018 1:30 am

Thanks everyone for all the feedback. I think I'm going to make a bastard sword wielding one with levels in fighter and either rogue or Bard. I think I'm gonna roll with expertise as well just for the option for more AC. Losing the +2 AB from not a real two hander is regrettable but at least I will have the AC when I need it . Thanks again for the feedback I will see you all in game!

User avatar
msterswrdsmn
Posts: 1057
Joined: Tue Sep 09, 2014 6:33 pm

Re: Hello there!

Post by msterswrdsmn » Tue Aug 14, 2018 4:00 am

As someone thats playing a bastard sword bard, its worth it. The flexibility to transition from heavy damage to tanking AC is totally worth it.

Post Reply