The Candlekeep Annex: RPed Baldur’s Gate No and Low Reload Adventures

Borco

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[Repost of the original post of 9 June 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 11

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Technical notes:
Game version: BG2EE 2.6.6.0
Difficulty: Hardcore
Mods: SCS (v34.3); BG Tweaks (cosmetic changes)
Modified SCS components: Giant Spiders (Tactical), Smarter Beholders (Tactical), Smarter Mind Flayers (Improved), Improved Fiends and Celestials (Basic)
Omitted SCS components: Improved Vampires, Improved Shade Lord, Improved Bodhi, Improved Beholder Hive, ToB tactical challenges (Watcher's Keep, Fire Giant Temple, Sendai's Enclave, Abazigal's Lair)

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It's good to be in Athkalta (even though Sorsha might disagree on account of Jon's hospitality)!

As soon as we're out of the cell, we checked our spellbook (optimized shortly before landing the killing blow on Sarevok) to confirm that we had memorized 3x Magic Missile, 2x Mirror Image, 1x Strength, 2x Skull Trap and 1x Spirit Armor. Lost and confused, Sorsha was more than happy to let Imoen tag along for now.

Our start was sloppy - Sorsha's first Skull Trap was somewhat wasted on the duegar party due to my poor timing, killing only one of four.
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This initial hiccup lead to a protracted melee kiting fight, with the panicked gibberlings eventually joining the fray. We also had to tap into Imoen's spellbook for a Lightning Bolt (which I normally like to keep for the narrow corridors) to increase our damage output.
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The mineral mephit in the sewer golem room was taken down with the help of MGoI, DuHM and Magic Missiles.
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Sorsha recovered her hood (her personal item introduced and described in the first post of the run), although to my disappointment she did not find the Staff Spear +2 among the "imported" loot - being proficient in axes, she got Bala's Axe instead. For the majority of BG1, Sorsha had been relying heavily on her staff's range and speed (0 speed factor with Aule's + two-handed weapon proficiency), and she was not ready to transition to standard melee fighting with axes. We'll ponder on the possible uses of Bala's on-hit Miscast Magic, however the activated Dispel Magic apparently casts at the wielder's divine caster level, thus making it completely irrelevant for Sorsha. For now, we needed another weapon and that meant fighting more pesky mephits in the jar room.
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As a compensation for the sustained minor injuries, we're rewarded with quarterstaff +1 and a level-up for Sorsha at 220k XP (level 11).
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Our second Skull Trap of the day turned out to be slightly more efficient, allowing us to clear the second duegar party with ease and reach Rielev and the golem activation stone.
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For the duegar trio guarding the narrow corridor leading to the sewage room, Sorsha kited them with her staff while running MIs (by way of a reminder, her personal item grants her +1 luck which in turn causes the enemies to always hit the images instead of the real Sorsha).
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The otyugh was taken down with Magic Missiles and Imoen's backstab with the +1 staff.
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Saving Sorsha's second MI cast for the security golems, we did suffer slightly heavier damage while trying to clear the remaining duegar parties in the NE corridor and near the portal (especially since our Spirit Armor had already expired earlier).
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Borco

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Sorsha, human bard: Part 11 - continued

We collected the Claw and the Amulet of Metaspell Influence and proceeded to Ellesime's room. As soon as the alarm went off, Imoen applied Haste and Sorsha fired up her MIs and equipped a chain mail. With that, both golems came down nice and easy.
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Assessing our remaining spells and other resources, we still had Web and Stinking Cloud in Imoen's spellbook, Sorsha's Bhallspawn DuHM and Armor + Fireball scrolls. That should be just enough to take care of Ilyich and his entourage. With our Haste and MIs still running, we first take out the dust mephit at the library's entrance.

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Sorsha then casts Armor (via scroll), Resist Fear (via her personal item) and DuHM, while Imoen covers the floor with her Web.
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With the first wave dead, we escalate the pressure with Stinking Cloud. Lacking the corresponding weapon proficiencies, Sorsha and Imoen focus their crossbow fire on the defenseless foes, waiting for more duegar to appear.
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Checking the log, we notice that the mage has entered the Stinking Cloud. Without hesitation, Sorsha pulls out her Fireball scroll…
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The rest was mainly clean-up, although we did suffer some damage from Ilyich et al. once both the Web and the Stinking Cloud expired.
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We took the acorns back to the dryads and, using HiS to avoid the mephits in the Elemental Plane, Imoen also returned the genie flask to procure the Sword of Chaos.
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Borco

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Sorsha, human bard: Part 11 - continued

After that, we moved on to the 2nd floor, dismissed Yoshimo and rested. Sorsha's buffs for the portal room were Strength, Shield, MIs, Haste and MGoI, while Imoen pitched in with Monster Summoning. Don't you just love MGoI when fighting mephits?
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Sorsha then takes the lead against the remaining mephits in the western corridor. Just like "None cross Greywolf and live!", "No one crosses the Shadow Thieves and lives!" is one of those inflated statements that regularly turn out to be untrue.
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Oh and by the way, our Skull Trap targeting seems to be improving a bit.
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In the hallway, Sorsha collected and identified the wands (Lightning, Fire, Monster Summoning and Cloudkill). In preparation for the assassins near the exit, we used MIs and Improved Invisibility on Sorsha and some freshly summoned ettercaps.
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Imoen was forced to make her save against Dire Charm and Sorsha had to cure poison on one of our summons, but otherwise we had everything under control.
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We didn't want to leave yet with semi-full spellbooks and so we decided to go and collect the Girdle of Bluntness from the forge, blasting the duegar parties with Skull Trap, Web and Fireball (via wand).
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Having released Frennedan and collected all the loot from his room, I realized that we could still take out the cambion back at the 1st floor with our leftover L1 spells before surfacing.
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Phew, we've made it! As I said in the beginning, it's good to be in Athkatla.

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Regards,

B.
 

Borco

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[Repost of the original post of 12 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 12

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11

With Imoen gone, Sorsha was once again on her own. For the record, here's the snapshot of our inventory after selling the excess loot from the Chateau.

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Note: Don't mind the flind form here - I was just testing the applicability of the two-handed weapon style bonus for the halberd (confirmed).

Once rested, we decided to proceed to the circus tent. Below is the extract of our spells memorized for the day.
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Note: I had never really used Reflected Image before, however with Sorsha's luck bonus (via her personal custom item) it may eventually see some play, as it at least guarantees avoiding a single hit.

For the orcs in the lobby, we buffed with Shield, Strength and DuHM and then kited them with our fast melee weapon and bow.
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With Aerie back to her more appealing form, Sorsha applied her remaining buffs, including Polymorph: Self, ProCold (Ice Storm counter), MSD, ProEvil, Haste and DuHM and rushed into Kalah's dome in the flind form.
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In addition to MIs and MGoI, Kalah's pre-buffs included Fireshield: Red, forcing us to abandon our melee approach.
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Sensing a window of opportunity, he opened with a successful Slow, effectively negating Sorsha's Haste.
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His subsequent Lightning Bolt got absorbed by our MSD.
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With the shadows gone, Sorsha quickly morphed into the jelly form - just in time to counter Kalah's incoming Fireball.
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As soon as he got under pressure from our range attacks, Kalah fired off his Invisibility + MIs sequencer.
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In order to draw him out, Sorsha morphed back into her human form, ready to follow with Detect Invisibility. That was not necessary, as Kalah broke his invisibility with Ice Storm.
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That was his fatal mistake - safe under her ProCold, Sorsha had enough time to morph into the jelly form once again (to counter any remaining low level spells with MR) and enjoy the circus show's finale.
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We talked to Giran's mother, reported the events to the guard and took a well deserved rest at the Den until nightfall. Sorsha then witnessed the first showdown between the guilds, collected the loot and procured RoAC as well as some useful potions (1x PoI, 1x Freedom, 1x Genius and 2x Firebreath) and spell scrolls (Enchanted Weapon and Remove Magic, both of which were then added into her book together with Stoneskin).

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Off we go to the Slums.

Regards,

B.
 

Borco

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[Repost of the original post of 13 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 13

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12

Even though the Copper Coronet would not make it into Athkatla's Michelin guide, I'd still vote it the most atmospheric pub in the known game universe. It's difficult to describe how many memories are brought back every time I enter that place with a new character for the first time.

For Sorsha, it was mostly about business. Or, more precisely, about putting certain people out of business. Starting with Amalas, Sorsha tests Ghoul Touch + Polymorph combo, which might see some further use down the road (although this may be somewhat limited by the fact that Ghoul Touch saves vs. spell, which generally makes it ill-suited against casters, whereas the fighter types on the other hand will have their AC to avoid being hit).
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I'm also curious to see whether we'll be able to leverage certain touch based spells by squeezing them into sequencers and thus making them accessible while polymorphed.

For the gladiator cells, Sorsa prepared with Stoneskin and Armor (casting both before resting to conserve as much spell slots as possible), Shield, Strength, Pro Normal Missiles, MSD and MIs. She took care of the first group with her staff in melee, using one of her two DuHMs to speed up the process.
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The winter wolf went down under Ghoul Touch.
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Before approaching the beastmaster, Sorsha refreshed her MIs and readied her Polymorph: Self.
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When the beasts attacked, she retreated into the narrow corridor, morphed into the flind form and applied the second DuHM.
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If these cells are not one of the best places to use lightning then I don't know what is. Sorsha thought the same and fired her single Wand of Lightning charge. The results were more than satisfying.
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With the last grizzly bear down, we morph into the jelly form and shoot down the beastmaster at range.
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Well, well - the Tuigan was ours, Hendak got freed and Lehtinan went out of business for real.
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We've also reached level 12, earning a proficiency pip in scimitars and our second L4 spell slot among others. At merely 440,000 XP, Sorsha's Chromatic Orbs have now become the poor man's Finger of Death and her MAA's last for 4 rounds.

From Bernard, we purchase a stack of 40 acid arrows and Azuredge and are already looking forward to try it out at the Graveyard District. Speaking about Graveyard District and about putting people out of business - no, we didn't forget about Llynis.
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Time to return Mr Littleman to where he belongs.

Regards,

B.
 

Borco

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[Repost of the original post of 19 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 14

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12, 13

Azuredge in hand, Sorsha was keen to explore Athkatla's Graveyard District.

If you put aside dead boys' ghosts that got robbed of their stuffed animals…
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the undead lurking behind the door to every tomb…
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dead men rising from their graves to settle old family grievances…
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or people buried alive by other people for profit, then one might agree with Arenthis that sometimes, just sometimes, Faerun can be a kind place.

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Apart from the minor tasks, Sorsha defeated the Crypt King to retrieve Namarra, running Resist Fear (via her hood), RoAC II and regular combat buffs on top of the flind form.
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Note: I'll make a small pause here to comment on Sorsha's hood, her personal item created in NearInfinity that grants +1 luck and casts Resist Fear once per day. The rationale was to emulate the effects of the bard song for the purposes of solo play, as explained in the introductory post. During the fight with the Crypt King, I've noticed Sorsha making a saving throw roll against his opening Horror in the log, which was weird. I decided to do a bit of testing and found out that for some reason the fear immunity ability was not properly implemented. My skills at "modding" (can you even call that modding, lol?) are virtually non-existent and after spending some time to figure out the issue I was still unable to make it work. At the time, I was also supposed to finalize my preparations for a two week camping trip in Iceland and, because of the timing constraints, decided to work around the issue by changing the design of the item to make the fear immunity permanent. Originally, I had been thinking to slightly scale the item's power along the lines of the bard song progression, but now I decided that this will be the only improvement until the rest of the game. That's why from now on you'll see the Remove Fear icon on Sorsha's portrait at all times (when wearing the hood).
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Back to our run. Even though Sorsha is not a healing potion addict, we still got a bit disappointed to find out that Staff of Curing cannot be used by Bards. Never mind, that's more inventory space for us.

The Suna Seni ambush happened on our way to the Bridge District.
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Arriving invisible, Sorsha moved to the edge of the area and deployed a full set of buffs, including Shield, Strength, PfNM, MSD, Polymorph: Self (flind), Blur, ProEvil, Fireshield: Red, MIs, Haste and RoAC II.
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Was that an overkill? Probably yes. Was it necessary to quaff that Potion of Firebreath? Probably not.
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But I had learned the hard way not to underestimate Suna's entourage and I like to play it safe here. The mage likes to cast Slow and, with our buffed saves vs. spell of 2, we were still in the danger zone. Silence via Namarra could have been the budget option here, but Firebreath was the fast track.

Tick! Tick! Three down.
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Tick! Four down.
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Tick! Five down.
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Smack! Six down.
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We collected Arbane (good to see you old friend) and finally headed to the Bridge District to sell the remaining loot. Without a potion case, Sorsha's inventory capacity was already quite stretched, but she still managed to squeeze in one Potion of Stone From from Mrs Cragmoon.

Oh and Shank got the title this time.
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Sorsha did solve the Skinner case, however with the view of keeping our XP progression in check, only reported her findings to Mr Aegisfield and did not follow up on his progress any further (sorry).
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Finally, after a side trip to the Watcher's Keep to resolve her inventory crisis by purchasing the potion case, Sorsha's back at the Copper Coronet, ready to put some more slavers out of business.

Regards,

B.
 

Borco

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[Repost of the original post of 19 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 15

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12, 13, 14

Copper Coronet sewers provided Sorsha with ample opportunities to test her arsenal. She approached invisible, collected the severed hand (with Stoneskin absorbing the trap damage) and bypassed the first hobgoblin party only to blast their smelly hides with a Fireball shortly thereafter.
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She then separated the captain from the two remaining shamans, targeting him with Chromatic Orb.
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Strange, despite the death animation and the log not showing any saving throw roll, he was still standing. Oh well, we'll just have to thin out his hefty hitpoints with our weapons instead. With the shamans joining the fray, Sorsha went into kiting mode, switching in between her staff and Tuigan, while keeping her aura clear (and Arbane at the ready) at all times.
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For the kobolds, we used Haste and Polymorph: Self, starting in the jelly form and then shifting into the spider.
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To counter the petrification trap on the impromptu bridge, Sorsha changed back into her human form and activated MSD. I could have used the jelly form, however I'm slightly paranoid when it comes to relying on its magic resistance when triggering traps, probably because it does not seem to work against those green blob traps for instance.

The second hobgoblin crew was massacred in the flind form.
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Sorsha then collected the carrion crawler blood, obtained Lilarcor, activated RoAC II and rested.
 

Borco

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Sorsha, human bard: Part 15 - continued

Thinking about the battle plan against Captain Haegan and his thugs, we wanted to do something a bit more special. The decision was made and Sorsha equipped her Girdle of Bluntness and prepared with Shield, Strength, Polymorph: Self, Blur, ProEvil, Fireshield: Red, MIs and Haste (Stoneskins were retained from before). To make our arrival as dramatic as possible, we entered the boat as a jelly… Oh, just how I'd love to see the slavers' faces.
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We're not cattle, Haegan, we're just a blob. A blob that can still activate it's Namarra, to be precise.
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And a blob that knows that some of you will be just the right level for insta-death by our Cloudkill wand.
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Let's see if you're stupid enough to hang around in the cloud if we activate our RoAC II.
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You were saying something about cattle, Haegan?
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Ok, I admit that was a bit cheesy. We're actually glad to see that some of the slavers have been quaffing enough extra-healing potions to at least get a fighting chance. Once the cloud dispersed Sorsha activated DuHM and shifted into the flind form.
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With only Haegan left, we switched to the human form and Tuigan to leverage our missile AC advantage provided by the Claw + Girdle of Piercing.
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Bad to-hit rolls made the going slow, even more so when our Haste expired. At the time, Sorsha's spellbook still contained Charm and Dire Charm. We thought about using Haegan as a meat shield against the trolls (for which Sorsha would still have to pickpocket him for the door key), but unfortunately neither of the spells landed home.
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Once again in her flind form, Sorsha managed to put some more pressure on him in melee upon which his morale failed.
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The fact that enemies cannot trigger traps totally makes sense, but if anyone in the game universe deserves to be chunked by that green goo then it's *Captain* Haegan running for his life. Nice try, but I'm not following you there.
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Welcome back, sir! Fancy an MM scroll?

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Borco

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Sorsha, human bard: Part 15 - continued

Refreshing her DuHM, Sorsha the flind was able to dispatch the two trolls with ease and thus save the day. Hooray!
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It would have been a shame to report back to Hendak with an undepleted spellbook, as if we were not trying hard enough. And the otyugh made the perfect target for our Chromatic Orb.
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With this, we're now more or less up to speed with Sorsha's current progress. Here's her inventory and character sheet for the record.
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Regards,

B.
 

Borco

Habitué
Messages
51
[Repost of the original post of 20 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 16

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12, 13, 14, 15

Leaving the Slums, Sorsha's next steps led her to the Governmental District where she procured the spellcasting license. She also had a brief chat with Jan - helping him got us to level 13, which meant access to L5 spells and improved saving throws.

When it comes to saving throws, being a human rogue is not easy - our current unbuffed saves of 10/8/9/13/9 are definitely not something to write home about. Still, the Claw and RoP +1 push our saves vs. spell down to 5 and, with easy access to II (II, Shadow Door, RoAC) and Blur, Sorsha can regularly achieve the zeros, albeit dispellable. Speaking of dispel, at level 13 we're already starting to get a meaningful advantage over the mages we'd typically encounter at this stage, which reduces the need to rely on SI: Abjuration to counter their Remove Magic casts.

Angry mobs eager to burn people (drow or not) at the stake is not something that Sorsha appreciates and therefore helping Viconia was a no-brainer. Speaking of burning people alive…

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We sure like our new license by the Cowled Wizards. Should be called the license to kill. We feel like 007.
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Afterwards, Sorsha took a detour to the Promenade for some scroll shopping - we got PfNW, Breach, Lower Resistance, Spell Shield and Wizard Eye and scribed all our available spells while sipping a Genius potion at bar in the Den of the Seven Dales. At night, we triggered the second guild war encounter and ended up fighting the dominated Shadow Thieves alongside the city guard. The loot contained a Find Familiar scroll, which was much appreciated as Sorsha had not scribed the first scroll obtained in Nashkel from Nimbul.
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Upon leaving the Promenade, we ran into Renfeld.
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Travelling invisible, as is her custom, Sorsha had plenty of time to prepare her buffs including MGoI. She opened by smacking the mage's head with her staff after which she immediately cast Shadow Door.
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To break her invisibility, she landed another hit, this time targeting one of the fighter types as the mage was already running his MIs.
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We moved back a bit to give ourselves more space for some AoE action. First, the Teleport Field.
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Sorsha followed up with a Fireball, killing the mage.
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Note: Looking at the screenshots in retrospect, I don't recall losing the MIs, as I was probably preoccupied with the action, however I am fairly positive that it should not be due to the incoming APR. Even though some of the enemies were hasted, the Telefield prevented them from landing too many hits against Sorsha's buffed AC. Still, it's clear they were gone in a single round and the only explanation that comes to my mind is that the enemy rogue was using Detect Illusion. I haven't noticed this behaviour before, but maybe it's because that most of the enemy rouges do not have high enough Detect Illusion skill for it to make a difference. Does anyone have any insight into this?

By the way, using Vampiric Touch in a Telefield is strangely satisfactory. The rogue was gone.
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Chromatic Orb and a second Fireball finished the fighter.
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Tuigan then cleared the rest of the battlefield.
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Borco

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Sorsha, human bard: Part 16 - continued

With Renfeld on our back (in our bag?), we proceeded to the Docks where we stumbled into the Priest of Cyric. This guy is hilarious! Arbane in one hand and Namarra in the other, Sorsha stood her ground.
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Once we got him silenced, an epic shaolin battle with staves ensued.
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Bruised and beaten, the cleric ran. I was inclined to let him go but Sorsha was all like: "Me axe be bloody ready!"

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Well, so much for a calm evening in Athkatla. We finally got Renfeld to the Harpers only to end up running more errands for them because of Xzar.

Before heading into Prebek's house, Sorsha first rested at the Sea's Bounty and afterwards prepared with MGoI, II and other standard buffs. Upon entering, she revealed herself to allow Prebek and Sanasha to fire up their prebuffs.
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Surprisingly, they each survived our opening Sunfire.
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The same cannot be said about our subsequent Fireball, although we have to admit that casting Remove Magic at us while Sorsha was busy finishing her evocation incantation was not a bad move at all, if only the timing had been better and the chances (25% due to the level difference) higher.
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I'm sure you know how the rest of the quest went - we fetched the bird and Xzar died. Anyway, Staff Spear +2 has been a welcome addition to our weapon collection.

We're heading into MaeVar's guild next.

Regards,

B.
 

Borco

Habitué
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[Repost of the original post of 24 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 17

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16

Infiltrating Mae'Var's guild was an easy task for Sorsha - she played her act flawlessly, although eventually she still had to perform some chores to prove trustworthy. While retrieving the amulet from the Temple District, we decided to pay a visit to our new potion dealer - Roger. Our shopping list included 1x Clarity, 3x Firebreath, 1x Magic Shielding, 1x Absorption and 2x Oil of Fiery Burning. In order to get a small refund, Sorhsa also agreed to take care of Roger's sea troll problem.
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While exploring the sewers, we unintentionally triggered contact with the central kobold party. Making sure that the rakshasha is not joining the fray, we dispatched the entire party by switching between our jelly (range attack, magic and piercing/missile immunities) and spider forms (melee finish).
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Out next task involved Rayic. Protected by MGoI, Sorsha first took care of the mephits in the lobby, which brought her to level 14.
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Unfortunately, we also triggered the level drain trap at the bookshelf and had to pay for a restore at the Temple of Oghma before returning to the quest at hand.
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Avoiding the golems on the second floor, Sorsha then proceeded straight to Rayic. Our battle plan was really simple - buff with Haste, MGoI and II (on top of our standard buff routine), keep clear aura (to allow for defensive potion quaff or morphing into the jelly form) and press on the offensive with Tuigan.

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Lucky spell interruptions (although hasted 4APR of Tuigan with acid arrows can shutdown spellcasters that do not have their MIs or PfMW/Mantles up very quickly) allowed Sorsha to use her aura offensively as well. First, silence via Namarra.
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We followed with Sunfire, while Rayic was busy trying to getting himself vocalized.
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Speaking of Namarra silence, that -5 spell penalty and the fact that it's party friendly (which I had not been previously aware of) really make it shine early on. Still, it's usefulness against arcane casters is somewhat limited when playing solo, given that you essentially trade off one action (silence) for another (vocalize).

At that point, Rayic was no longer able to turn the game around.
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Borco

Habitué
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51
Sorsha, human bard: Part 17 - continued

I'll spare you the boring details of the remaining fetch quests and fast forward to the battle with Mae'Var. Sorsha entered the guild cellar from the waterfront and prepared with Stoneskin, Strength, Shield, Polymorph: Self, Blur, ProEvil, MIs, Haste and II (and later added DuHM).

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She opened with Vampiric Touch, targeting the priest.
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Mae'Var applied PfMW and rallied his assassins.
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Sorsha responded with PfNW, which admittedly feels almost too efficient in this particular fight (despite all his bravado, Mae'Var not even in possession of a magical weapon).
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Mae'Var went for Haste, which would normally be a decent move given their strength in numbers, but for now we're safe behind our buffs. Remove Magic could come at any time now, however the chances of getting our bard spell levels dispelled by a dual-classer are going to be rather low.
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Eventually, we're the first to land Remove Magic, with limited success (but at least removing Haste).
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Subsequent Cone of Cold from Mae'Var did more harm than good, at least if seen from their team's perspective.
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Sensing a window of opportunity, Sorsha activated Namarra.
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As expected, Mae'Var countered with Vocalize and pressed on.
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We entered brief offensive by shifting into the flind form, but then our buffs started to expire.
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Borco

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Sorsha, human bard: Part 17 - continued

With II gone, we're now susceptible to single target spells. Putting some distance between her and Mae'Var, Sorsha awaited his next move. Enchantment incantation indicated charm of confusion type of spell. There we go - Domination.
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Sorsha countered the spell by morphing into the jelly form.
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That would have been a clear move, were it not for the summoned ogre. In retrospect, we should have shifted into the human form and equip Lilarcor instead. Nevertheless, we're at least safe from all the attacks apart from the ogre and the jelly's MR ate two additional spells.
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With Mae'Var spellbook getting fairly dry, Sorsha shifted back into her human form and countered the incoming Hold Person by equipping Arbane.
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Activating Arbane's Haste helped us to finish the last surviving assassin. Mae'Var's last spell (MAA) was just a minor inconvenience.

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We finished in melee with our Stoneskins still intact.
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Not eager to face any more rogues that day, we left through the back door and reported back to Renal. To celebrate our success, we decided to spend the entire reward at the Adventurer's Mart, purchasing the Harp of Pandemonium (it's first time I've actually bought the item) and the Victor.

Despite having a good time in Athkatla so far, we're now eager to move on beyond the city limits.

Regards,

B.
 

Borco

Habitué
Messages
51
[Repost of the original post of 25 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 18

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17

Back in the Bridge District, there were several tasks on our agenda to take care of. First, Sorsha enhanced her potion collection by observing the battle between the fallen paladins and the smugglers, scoring 9 (!} PoIs and 2x Potion of Invulnerability (to be kept for later when we get UAI). Speaking of UAI, we've been keeping the majority of items that can become useful at the later stage by storing these in the Five Flagons Inn.

Secondly, we rescued Lady Elega from Reti and Camitis, using our standard set of defensive and offensive buffs and the Harp of Pandemonium.
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With that, we earned our first pair of magical boots (Boots of Avoidance) and reached level 15 at 1,100,000 exp.

At the time, Sorsha was getting a bit concerned about Aegisfield, to whom she had previously reported her findings regarding the skinner murders, and decided to check out the tanner's house to see if she could find any clues. We confronted Rejiek (how do you even pronounce that by the way?), triggered the traps in the jelly form, recovered Aegisfield's body and proceeded to the cellar.
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In addition to Polymorph: Self, Sorsha's buffs were Stoneskin, Shield, Strength, Blur, ProEvil, MIs, Fireshield: Red, Haste and Shadow Door. Our opening Sunfire eliminated the two ghasts.
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Sorsha retreated upstairs, followed by the bone golem and one of the Rune Assassins.
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Note: I'm not sure why, but some SCS enemies that are supposed to quaff Oils of Speed based on their script (and actually carry these in the inventory) open with Potion of Freedom, as was the case with the Rune Assassin here.

With the intention of separating the two, Sorsha returned to the ground floor - seeing that only the bone golem followed through, she switched to her blunt weapon (+2 quarterstaff) and kited it in melee.
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Afterwards, we took on the two assassins under DuHM.
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After the battle, we retrieved the Gesen shaft, countering the Ice Storm and Fireball traps by morphing into the jelly form (even though it's a bit clumsy when it comes to opening containers), and reported the sad news to inspector Brega.

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Borco

Habitué
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51
Sorsha, human bard: Part 18 - continued

From the Governmental District, we returned to the Slums once again to conclude some unfinished business with the slavers. First, there were Cohrvale and Bregg.
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The slaver guard patrolling the entrance to the boat was next. Sorsha: PfNW -> ogre form -> Arbane haste* -> "I will crush!"
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Note: For sake of clarification, in BG2EE the activated abilities from equipped weapons (such as Arbane's haste of Namarra's silence) can still be used while polymorphed. To the contrary, the equipped abilities (such as Arbane's hold immunity) only apply for off-hand weapons - thus the Free Action icon on Sorsha's portrait indicates that she's been holding Arbane in the off-hand prior to morphing into the ogre form.

Hello there!
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For the main group, Sorsha employed Skull Trap…
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Harp of Pandemonium…
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Namarra…
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and finished with Sunfire.
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Here's Sorsha's inventory for the record.

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We're on our way to Trademeet next.

Regards,

B.
 

Borco

Habitué
Messages
51
[Repost of the original post of 26 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 19

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18

Our journey from Athkatla was rather uneventful until it got interrupted by some slavers that apparently were still in business. Sorsha quaffed a PoI, prepared her buffs and opened with the Harp of Pandemonium (for sake of clarity, the item's effect is essentially a combination of Confusion and Wing Buffet, affecting multiple targets in a broad straight line) followed by Sunfire.
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Silence via Namarra, Tuigan with acid arrows, the mustard jelly form and Remove Magic then allowed us to safely take down the surviving wizard.
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Finally in Trademeet, Sorsha first purchased some supplies from the dao (2x Oil of Speed, 1x Potion of Absorption, 40 acid arrows) before eliminating them with the help of Fireshield: Red, Haste, SI: Alteration, Namarra and Pandemonium among others.
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Borco

Habitué
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Sorsha, human bard: Part 19 - continued

As Sorsha is not best suited for killing vast numbers of trolls, we navigated though the most of the Druid Grove under invisibility, only stopping to remove the Shambling Mounds at the bridge with our newly acquired Belm (while wearing the Girdle of Bluntness and running our standard set of defensive and offensive buffs).
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The grizzly bears followed suit.
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At that point, we rested and prepared for Dalok's druids with Stoneskin, Strength, Shield, Blur, ProEvil, MIs, Haste, II, MGoI and PfNW. Sorsha revealed herself, allowing the druids to fire their pre-buffs, and opened with Web.
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As soon as the first enemy summons showed up, Sorsha released Sunfire.
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Emotion: Hopelessness.
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Skull Trap.
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And another one.
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And finish under DuHM.
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With the path clear, we enrolled Cernd and led him in front of Faldorn. Benefiting from our arcane buffs (and some borrowed items that Sorsha managed to sneak in), he had an easy time facing her in the arena.
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Back in town, we reported Sorsha's success and used the generous reward to fund our purchase of the Cloak of Displacement, BoIB and Ras from the local merchants. We cannot yet use the Shield of Harmony, but it's definitely staying with us until we get UAI. By dealing with skin dancers and returning the mantle to the High Merchant, Sorsha confirmed her status as the hero of Trademeet.

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Sorsha's now at level 16 and has access to L6 spells, albeit with a somewhat limited collection of memorized spells, and has also earned a new weapon proficiency in short swords (in addition to staves, short bows, axes, two-handed weapon style and scimitars).

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The Shade Lord awaits.

Regards,

B.
 

Borco

Habitué
Messages
51
[Repost of the original post of 27 July 2023]

Sorsha, human bard: Part 20

Previous posts - BG1: Introduction, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Previous posts - SoA: 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19

All things considered, Imnesvale is a pleasant place. After all, you can get Ilbratha here. Does Sorsha need it? Not necessarily, however her +1 luck bonus modifier (via her personal item) make MIs extremely relevant. Of course, we can rely on Sorsha's spellbook, though with the Amulet of Power expected to squeeze out the Metaspell Influence in the near future, our total number of L2 spells per day is going to be 4 (at least until level 22), which is just enough for Strength, MI, Blur and Invisibility. We do carry couple of additional MI scrolls for emergency purposes, but an unlimited resource is always welcome.

Here's Sorsha dealing with the killer mimic and Jermien's stone golem.
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Fast forward to the Ruined Temple, where Azuredge was definitely the MVP.
 

Borco

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Sorsha, human bard: Part 20 - continued

We encountered shade wolves…
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skeleton warriors…
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shadow fiends and shadows…
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halflings (by the way thank you for the Arvoreen, Mazzy)…
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greater mummies…
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bone golems…
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more bone golems…
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and even more of everything!
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Both of our summons - Ras and the efeeti - had joined the action. In terms of consumables, the total bill for clearing the temple interior was one Oil of Speed, Ghost Armor and Mirror Image scrolls (we had to store Ilbratha back in Imnesvale due to inventory management) and Wand of Monster Summoning charge.

The rewards on the other hand were rather plentiful - PfMW and Pierce Magic scrolls in addition to sellable loot and two (!) XP levels bringing Sorsha to level 18 at 1,760,000 exp. Level 17 marks the last saving throws' reduction (9/6/8/12/7) before the final adjustment at level 21, while with level 18 we've gained our second L6 spell slot.

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