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Icewind Dale Has Arrived at GOG.com

TwinBahamutTwinBahamut Staff HealerRPGamer Staff
edited October 2010 in Latest Updates
Even after a decade, the frozen north still promises wealth and adventure. Still, you may want dust off those old rulebooks and study up on your THAC0 if you want to survive this one.

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Comments

  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    I tried Icewind Dale back in the day, but the combat system was never my favourite part of the Baldur's Gate games, so I got bored pretty quickly.
    Becky Cunningham, Staff-at-Large
    Twitter: BeckyCFreelance
  • scorpioscorpio Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    I loved this game back in the day. Not sure if I would want to revisit it though at this point. Perhaps if they actually graphically updated the game I would check it out again.
  • JitawaJitawa Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    As a series, it was always basically Baldur's Gate without all the cool party interaction and personality. As Ocelot suggests, I didn't think the combat system was enough to stand on its own.
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    Own the game and Xpack and not fond of the combat system that they switched to for the later D&D games
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    I love these games.... from the Gold Box games right up through NWN2. But, I totally recognize their weaknesses (and the fact that I'm looking at them with rose colored glasses). I really do enjoy RPGs with thoughtful battle systems which force you to plan your party and battles carefully. However, unless you really know your D&D rulesets, and/or are willing to invest time to learning more about them, you'll be at a strong disadvantage in this game. Also, the rules are a unnecessarily clunky / complex in some areas, though they do streamline some of that for the computer games.
  • Fowl SorcerousFowl Sorcerous Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    Yeah 2nd ed whole game mechanics was something a clusterf*** of counter-intuitive weirdness, but Icewind Dale 2 was the first videogame to use 3rd ed's simple easy to understand combat mechanics and horrendeously broken divine caster classes. so there's that as a consolation. Also, I'm fairly certain they're the only D&D games to let you jump.
  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    Yeah...I remember how much different IWD2 was even though it LOOKS the same. The updated rules set was very helpful. Now, when are we going to get a game with the even easier 4th Ed rules?
  • Fowl SorcerousFowl Sorcerous Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    jcservant said:
    Yeah...I remember how much different IWD2 was even though it LOOKS the same. The updated rules set was very helpful. Now, when are we going to get a game with the even easier 4th Ed rules?

    the upcoming neverwinter is using the 4th ed rule set. (cue the fanboys complaining that 4 e's combat is too much like a videogame)
  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    Isn't that an MMO? I don't have time for MMO's, unfortunately.
  • scorpioscorpio Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    They changed it to an mmo? I was under the impression it was offline.
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited October 2010
    No, it's online... but is NOT an MMO. Think non-massive multiplayer campaigns.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    Ah...sounds like the Original NWN on AOL back in the day. Going back to their roots, eh? That just might be interesting to me after all!
  • AzilisAzilis Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    I loved IWD. It's Baldur's Gate focused almost completely on dungeon-crawling, with a linear (though very atmospheric) story. You didn't have much of a choice in how the story played out, and there was no party interaction, but on the plus side, you got to create your entire party from the ground up. The dungeons were varied and incredibly well-designed, beating out pretty much all of the BG series dungeon crawling sections (even BG2's Underdark).
    scorpio said:
    They changed it to an mmo? I was under the impression it was offline.

    It was never completely offline. There's a heavy online component, but reports seem to differ on whether or not it's an MMO (though I think it's not). Can't say I'm interested in the least, though, due to the developer. I was never a big fan of the NWN franchise, though I did enjoy NWN2.
  • WeglarzWeglarz New Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    I don't really understand why everyone thinks that the D&D 2nd ed ruleset is so hard to understand. I mean, "study up on THAC0?" It explains itself... To hit armor class of 0. THAC0 is the number that your roll and your bonuses need to add up to hit someone with an armor class of 0. Not too difficult as long as you just think about it for a second.
  • MinneyarMinneyar Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    Weglarz said:
    I don't really understand why everyone thinks that the D&D 2nd ed ruleset is so hard to understand.
    The confusing part is that, due to how THAC0 works, it means that lower armor classes are better. A guy who is totally unarmored has an AC of 10, and a guy in a suit of full plate with a tower shield is a 0. How many other games are there where your armor is represented numerically and having a lower number is better?

    There are a lot of other weird lower/higher inconsistencies in 2nd ed, too. Saving throws, for example. Rolling high on attack and damage rolls is good, but when rolling saves you want to roll under a set number. How does that make sense? Not to mention that it's weird that the number you roll against is determined by your class and level, meaning a 1st-level fighter has just as good a chance to save against a 1st-level magic user's spell as a 10th-level magic user's spell, barring any situational modifiers. On the other hand, it may be more or less difficult depending on whether the spell is question is being cast by a spellcaster or that spellcaster is using a wand...

    I've always thought that one of the best things 3rd edition did was make it so that higher numbers for both your statistics and how you roll are always better.
  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    My problem with the BG/IWD combat system wasn't the 2nd Ed rules, with which I'm quite familiar. It was the turn-based/real-time combo and the way that enemy casters were programmed to throw up every defensive spell in the book in rapid succession at the beginning of every fight. I found the system overall to be clunky and difficult to control, while the cheating chain-casting spellcasters led to abuse of the save/load system in order to memorize the necessary counter-spells before any difficult fight. I would really have been happier with Gold Box-style combat.
    Becky Cunningham, Staff-at-Large
    Twitter: BeckyCFreelance
  • Fowl SorcerousFowl Sorcerous Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    THAC0 (and the rest of the 2nd ed ruleset) was not so bad, otherwise AD&D would not have been the most successful rpg for decades, it just that we 3rd ed came out and it was consistent and intuitive across the board did anyone spend a lot of time complaining about how terrible the system was. That said, 2nd ed's unarmed combat and grappling rules were horrendously over-complicated.
  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    And I never indicated it was bad, par se. It was needlessly complicated in some areas. There were areas, such as the ways spells were memorized FF1 style, that could have been simplified with a MP system or something similar...without really changing the core experience. 3rd ed addresses SOME of this (Such as the sorcerer class being a less complicated version of the mage), but seem to make add other things more complicated... such as pretige classes (It would take me a while figuring out what skills I needed to pick up in what order to unlock some of those guys), and the new defense / counter defense spell casting Becky points out above. (Remember, I'm addressing this from the computer gaming angle).
  • MinneyarMinneyar Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    jcservant said:
    There were areas, such as the ways spells were memorized FF1 style, that could have been simplified with a MP system or something similar...without really changing the core experience.

    The D&D spellcasting system is actually based on Jack Vance's Dying Earth novels, and to be honest, I think it's part of D&D's charm. At least, in 3E and earlier. It helps to make the way magic users work significantly different from other game systems, and it makes resource management and day-to-day strategy much more important. If you want a class that uses an MP-like resource, there's the psion. (of course, I'm looking at this all from a pen & paper gaming perspective, in which counterspelling is almost completely worthless until you're over level 20 and can pick up the Epic Counterspell feat)
  • The Crow WizardThe Crow Wizard Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    While it's understandable that people used to a SNES-era JRPG paradigm would be confused and/or annoyed by the x-spells-per-day system, what needs to be pointed out is that the power of spells when compared to their Fire 2 costs 12 MP counterparts is that they are substantially more powerful. A single fireball can clear out or severely reduce the difficulty of an encounter akin to a JRPG boss fight. It's all about managing it as a resource, and both 3rd and 4th edition have followed suit, with the 'fix' introduced in 4 being a number of abilities that can be used at will, leaving room for a mage to have their burst and still be useful otherwise.

    Which is pretty much how Dragon Age worked. Sure, an MP bar was there, but you were pretty much going to go through 4-5 spells per encounter, and that was more than enough.
  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    Let us not forget that the very fireball you spoke, in the right circumstances, was easily more useful and more damaging than just about every 4th, 5th and 6th level spell, depending on the ruleset (I don't remember when they capped it at 10d6.) Or how a 6th level cleric only had Cure Light Wounds x 3 or 4 until they made more curing spells in the lower casting levels and added the ability for clerics to instant change any pre memorized spell into a healing spell.

    Again, I'm a fanboy of all D&D games, and I loved the complexity of the whole thing including character creation, choosing the right spells, setting up backstabs, etc. In many ways, I think the Gold Box games were ahead of their time. But the computer D&D games were based off of a paper based system. Compared to many other CRPGs, it's easy to see some of the elements could have been simplified without sacrificing any of the good gameplay. And, if done carefully, it could still retain the feel of D&D games.
  • MeoTwister5MeoTwister5 Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    As someone who started out BG with little knowledge of D&D when I began, the complexities were one of the reasons why I could never really get into D&D into CRPGs during the Infinity Engine game era. I tried BG when it came out, hell I tried to get a friend to teach me, but given the amount of other CRPGs in the time that were easier to play (Fallout 2) or easier to get into (Torment, even if the actual execution was a mess) I never really played the games anymore. In the end it felt very restrictive that made me feel it was really catered for those who really knew the system already.

    Which is why I was happy that Neverwinter Nights used the third ed, which made it much more accessible and understandable for newbies like me to play. I even managed to teach myself the system to be a competent player of sorts. KotOR would only be half as fun without it.
  • AzilisAzilis Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    Minneyar said:
    The D&D spellcasting system is actually based on Jack Vance's Dying Earth novels, and to be honest, I think it's part of D&D's charm. At least, in 3E and earlier. It helps to make the way magic users work significantly different from other game systems, and it makes resource management and day-to-day strategy much more important.

    My only experience with D&D is through video games (the Infinity Engine games + a few others), and I like the spellcasting system. Not necessarily because it's better than an MP system (though I think it is), but because it requires thought and planning. Not only do you need to memorize a good combination of spells ahead of battles to be successful, you have to use them carefully as well, due to the limits of the system. If you compare Dragon Age's combat system to that of the Infinity Engine games, one of the big drawbacks in DA was the spellcasting system.
  • MinneyarMinneyar Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    jcservant said:
    Let us not forget that the very fireball you spoke, in the right circumstances, was easily more useful and more damaging than just about every 4th, 5th and 6th level spell, depending on the ruleset (I don't remember when they capped it at 10d6.)

    Fireball's damage got capped waaay back in '89 with 2nd edition. While fireball is flashy and useful for clearing out a room full of wimps, I think there are a lot of other spells that are more useful -- stinking cloud, fly, haste, (major/minor/silent) image, web; even the 2nd-level scorching ray is better against single targets (and scales much better with level -- if you like direct damage, empowered scorching ray is a great use of a 4th-level spell slot)...
  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    Minneyar said:
    Fireball's damage got capped waaay back in '89 with 2nd edition. While fireball is flashy and useful for clearing out a room full of wimps, I think there are a lot of other spells that are more useful -- stinking cloud, fly, haste, (major/minor/silent) image, web; even the 2nd-level scorching ray is better against single targets (and scales much better with level -- if you like direct damage, empowered scorching ray is a great use of a 4th-level spell slot)...
    Any and all of those advantages are cancelled out by the fact that casting fireball allows one to yell it out like Lina Inverse.
    Becky Cunningham, Staff-at-Large
    Twitter: BeckyCFreelance
  • MinneyarMinneyar Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    Ocelot said:
    Any and all of those advantages are cancelled out by the fact that casting fireball allows one to yell it out like Lina Inverse.

    I certainly can't deny that.

    Although if you really want to yell out your spell names, there's always Slayers d20, which gives you bonuses to your spellcasting if you say the name and/or the spell incantation when you cast it.
  • EmeraldSuzakuEmeraldSuzaku Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    Wow. With all the BESM stuff I picked up, Slayers was not among it. Hmmmm.....

    ...For a while whenever I played D&D, I'd give kooky names to my spells. Usually from Slayers or some such.
  • QuinQuin ne cede malis RPGamer Staff
    edited October 2010
    Minneyar said:
    I certainly can't deny that.

    Although if you really want to yell out your spell names, there's always Slayers d20, which gives you bonuses to your spellcasting if you say the name and/or the spell incantation when you cast it.

    "I, who stand in the full light of the heavens, command thee, who opens the gates of hell. Come forth, divine lightning! This ends now! Indignation!!"

    *Roll*

    image

    Goddammit.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    befriend (v.): to use mecha-class beam weaponry to inflict grievous bodily harm on a target in the process of proving the validity of your belief system.
  • EmeraldSuzakuEmeraldSuzaku Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    That die was certainly rather indignant.
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited October 2010
    Quin said:
    "I, who stand in the full light of the heavens, command thee, who opens the gates of hell. Come forth, divine lightning! This ends now! Indignation!!"

    *Roll*

    image

    Goddammit.

    That die hates anime I'm assuming
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
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