Butt-Kicking, For Goodness! Part II
By Dwip November 27, 2005, 3:13 pm Comments (2) RSS Feed for this post

Because I’m not done yet. You people who could care less (which I realize is almost everyone) can just deal.

First, a pretty picture for everyone. Yes, I’m getting totally schooled. Keldorn, Minsc, and Jahiera are dead or out of it, and big ass demons are eating the rest of my team. However, this is way more fun than, say, the Diablo fight or the Mount Arreat fight was. Just so we’re all clear that even losing is fun in this game. There’s only one fight I get overly frustrated with, and…well, let’s not talk about that.

Let us make note of those characters of yore, and demonstrate this whole replayability thing I keep talking about.

Thag (CN Dwarf Male Fighter)
BG1 end date 07/23/99 (Level 7); Khalid, Minsc, Jahiera, Dynahier, Imoen

My very first run through BG1, back before the Tales of the Sword Coast xpack even existed, and back before I even owned the game and was still borrowing David’s copy. The whole dwarf fighter thing is a homage to those mudding days of yore, and is apparently the only time I’ve played a dwarf in a BG game. All my other characters are half-elves or elves. Note the party setup, which is, I feel, the default good/neutral party.

Thag made it all the way through BG1 pre-TotSC (lower level cap!). I’m pretty sure he had runs through TotSC and BG2 as well, but if those saves ever existed, they’re not on my 2002 archive CD.

Valerius (CG Elf Male Fighter/Mage)
BG1 end date 11/27/00 (Level 7/7), Ajantis, Khalid, Jahiera, Coran, Dynahier
BG2 end date 10/09/00 (Level 13/13), Minsc, Valygar, Jahiera, Imoen, Aerie

Valerius, I’m fairly sure, was run through for a lot of reasons, primarily because I wanted to try a Fighter/Mage, wanted to have Ajantis and Coran in a party, and wanted to not play Thag in BG2 when it came out (hence the later BG1 end date – I exported him to BG2 as soon as I got it, I think, and came back later). He made it all the way through both BG1 with TotSC and was my first run through BG2. He never went through Throne of Bhaal because he really sucked and I got tired of playing him.

Yesmalin (NG Elf Male Ranger/NG Elf Male Stalker)
BG1 end date 09/23/00 (Level 8); Minsc, Kivan, Faldorn, Imoen, Dynahier
BG2 end date 09/04/01 (Level 19); Keldorn, Anomen, Jahiera, Aerie, Imoen
ToB end date 09/11/01 (Level 29); Keldorn, Sarevok, Jahiera, Aerie, Imoen

Yesmalin was my first character to make it through the whole trilogy. He made it through BG1 just before I got BG2, and then I brought him back a year later for BG2 and ToB. I did a lot with Yesmalin, including having the Environmentalist Party in BG1 (Yesmalin, Minsc, and Kivan as rangers, Faldorn as a druid), getting the ranger stronghold in BG2 (Valerius did both fighter and mage), doing the Jahiera romance (I skipped out and did the Aerie one instead, like Valerius. Jahiera’s HARD), and getting Anomen in a party (he sucks). Yesmalin was my first character to finish ToB, replacing Anomen with His Supreme Badassness, Sarevok. Still one of my favorites.

Nargol (NG Half-Elf Bard)
BG1 stop date 09/24/00 (Level 6); Yeslick, Kivan, Branwen, Coran, Xan

Nargol was in that unfortunate period right before I got BG2, wherein BG more or less ruled my life (I finished 2 characters and got a 3rd halfway through the game in around 2 weeks!). He got made because I wanted a bard, and because I wanted to play a bunch of characters I had never played before, which is why Yeslick (comes late in Chapter 4), and Coran (comes early in Chapter 4) are in there. He never really got finished (he’s just started Chapter 5), because BG2 appeared and destroyed my life, but I do want to take him through someday, because I haven’t done the bard quests in BG2 yet.

Feldor (LN Half-Elf Male Fighter/Cleric)
BG2 end date 02/16/01 (Level 13/14); Minsc, Keldorn, Jahiera, Nalia, Aerie

Feldor’s existance is simple. I wanted a cleric for the cleric stronghold. I came, I saw, I conquered. Then, having beat the game, I dropped it for better persuits, such as…

Valerian (TN Elf Male Fighter/Mage/Thief)
BG2 end date 05/23/01 (Level 11/12/14)

…Valerian, my BG2 solo character, and the single most awesome time I’ve had with that game, because of the sheer tactical challenges. It was hard, but I did it. I also know he did it in ToB, too, though the save is lost, and I have no idea how I did such a thing, because ToB is all hard, all the time, even for 6 people. But I did it.

Ergos (TN Half-Elf Male Druid)
BG1 end date 10/27/05 (Level 10); Khalid, Minsc, Jahiera, Dynahier, Imoen
BG2 end date 11/25/05 (Level 24); Keldorn, Minsc, Jahiera, Aerie, Imoen
ToB end date 11/27/05 (Level 27); Keldorn, Minsc, Jahiera, Aerie, Imoen

Ergos exists because I hadn’t played either BG in years at this point, because I never did do a druid, and because I never did finish the damn Jahiera romance. So I proceeded to do all of these things. The verdict is that druids suck, their strongholds suck, and Jahiera has the best character plot in the game, by leaps and bounds and rocket packs. Time consuming, but cool.

There are other, lesser characters, of course, but they’re at such unadvanced stages in BG1, I shant even mention them. But I will, in closing, mention some of the things I still want to accomplish before I’m done.

1. I’ve never played a bard through to the end. Nargol’s up for that. He can also accomplish a few other things while he’s there, like picking up some of the NPCs I don’t use much (Haer’Dalis, Mazzy, Nalia, Valygar), and maybe reminding me of the Aerie romance plot, not to mention the bard quests.

2. I’ve never played an evil party in either game, which means I’ve never seen Xzar, Montaron, Edwin, Shar-Teel, Safana, Tiax, Kagain, or Eldoth (!) in BG1, and Edwin, Korgan, and Viconia in BG2. Too, there are assorted evil endings and suchlike I’ve never seen. Plus the joy of rampant Flaming Fist slaughter.

3. I’ve never soloed BG1 with anything. This is tragic, because I’d love to take somebody through BG1, BG2, and ToB solo, just to say I did. I’d also like to solo a mage, and solo a thief, and maybe solo an inquisitor paladin. It’s not that I haven’t tried, it’s that A) That first part of BG1 is REALLY HARD solo, and B) I’m so freaking tired of Candlekeep. I’m even more tired of Candlekeep than I am of Irenicus’ dungeon in BG2, and that’s saying a lot.

Anyway. We’ll see how far I get with that.

Computer Games - Baldur's Gate Series Comments (2) RSS Feed for this post
Comments on Butt-Kicking, For Goodness! Part II
avatar Comment by Clyos #1
November 30, 2005 at 1:28 pm

One must ask, where is the token dwarven fighter?

avatar Comment by Dwip #2
November 30, 2005 at 6:12 pm

The observant reader will note the first character listed.