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How the heck do you battle beholders?

Discussion in 'BG2: Shadows of Amn (Classic)' started by Mercury Star, Sep 24, 2006.

  1. The Mountain Hare Banned

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    saros:
    Yeah, I'm not sure if the bug is fixed in the G3 fixpack.

    Can anyone here verify whether it has been?

    What idiot goes walking into the MIDDLE of a Beholder *group*?! Of course a Beholder group will tear through ANY of your protections like a hot knife through butter. I was making the assumption that the fight is one on one.

    I'm not sure about the above, because I specifically remember using the 'Spell Shield' + 'Spell Turning' strategy to wipe out Beholders. I'm not sure about the theory behind it, but in practice I did get it working.

    The rebounded 'cause serious wounds' hurt the Beholder enough to cause it to flee. If not, I always managed to recast to rebound the next rays. I think the mistake you're making is assuming that the mage/sorc has not pre-prepared a Spell Turning prior to encountering the Beholder.

    From memory, I refined my strategy with 'Protection from Necromancy'. I only cast 'Spell Turning' AFTER the Beholder unloaded its Cure Serious Wounds on me. Rebounded Petrification, Death and Charm rays = Death.

    From memory, there are more than 3 in the game. For example, you missed the one you can purchase in the Copper Coronet. I can't blame you, Spell Turning is barely used by veterans, at best. But I have a fetish for watching 'Call Lightning', 'Protection from Petrification' and 'Finger of Death' being bounced off me, back to the caster.

    Although you're probably just better off wearing the Cloak of Mirroring. If the cloak of cheese didn't exist, however, I'd say that Spell Turning is a definite MUST for a mage/sorc.

    For a group of Beholders, I'd say wear the cloak of mirroring, and spell sequence greater malison + prismatic spray.
     
  2. saros Gems: 5/31
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    I don't use the Cloak of Mirroring.

    You are talking about the scroll "Spell Turning". Yes, there are more than three scrolls and also the Book of Infinite spells can cast it once per day.

    I was referring, however, to the scroll "Spell Shield". While it can be given as a random treasure reward, there are three fixed scrolls sold in the entire SoA and ToB.

    Unfortunately, a Sorcerer lvl 14 has more valuable spells to pick rather than Spell Turning. There are Project Image, Mordenkainen's Sword, Spell Sequencer and Delayed Blast Fireball. Spell Turning comes at a fifth pick at best - meaning you will gain it at lvl 31, xp 8 000 000(and Prot from the Elements IMO is a better spell)

    Power Word Blind is the best spell for a big Beholder group, on condition that they are all normal beholders. Elder Orbs are Magic resistant.

    There is almost no such thing like "a lone Beholder" in the intermediate and latter game. So your tactic might work in the beginning. After that the Beholders will either come in waves, or will be Elder Orbs and Hive Mothers, or both. For instance, you will never meet a lone Hive Mother in a battle against you. There are always allies with her - whether other beholders, demons or drow.

    Spell Turning will not save you vs Imprisonment. And this whole strategy Spell Shield + Spell Turning needs a total remodelling vs Elder Orbs, Death Tyrants and Hive Mothers since it will not work against them.
     
  3. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    [​IMG] Everyone, this is the SoA-only forum. This forum is intended for people who don't have ToB installed. As such, any mention of any ToB features here is misleading and pointless. Please stick to what can be done in SoA with your advice.

    If anyone wants to discuss beholders with ToB installed, that's a whole new can of worms. You can open another thread for that in our ToB forum.
     
  4. The Mountain Hare Banned

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    saros:
    That's a pity. Do you consider the item overpowered?

    I'm not sure about the above. From memory, I have found 'Spell Shield' as fixed treasure.

    That's a matter of debate. Project Image should definitely be a first pick for Lvl 7, but any other spells in that level aren't vital. Mordy's sword seems over-rated, Delayed Fireblast's only real use is against Liches (who are immune to normal fireballs), and there are higher level spell sequencers available.

    Although I do agree that if you have the Cloak of Mirroring/Book of Infinite Spells, the 'Spell Turning' is redundant.

    Power Word Blind is an excellent spell, no doubt about it. But Spell Turning is an excellent defensive spell vs. Beholders.

    In SoA, I've never faced more than 3 Beholders at a time.

    Beholders imprison?

    Yeah, but they aren't in SoA, so it's not really an issue. I've never tried the Spell Turning tactic in ToB, although one day I intend to.
     
  5. Stu Gems: 20/31
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    Elder orbs do ;) , regular beholders and gauths won't. To protect against this use beserker rage or the like. Perhaps the easiest way to get rid of large groups is to send a beserked warrior with cloak of mirroring/shield of balduran in solo. Most of the gauths will kill themselves with the reflected rays and the Beholders should only take a few hits after they soften themselves up.

    If you don't have access to these items I'd just rush in with the whole party improved hastened and try to down the big ones as fast as possible.
     
  6. syuusaru Gems: 2/31
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    I believe Spell Sequencer is a better FIRST spell to pick, for the level 7 selection. Loading with 3 skull traps and you got yourself a power bomb.

    What you should do is get a really low reputation then (kill some random peasants). When the guards come, pop this sequencer in their face immediately.
    The guards gives loads and loads of exp, and their full plate mail armors sell for a VERY good price. You could probably get to the exp cap for SoA just by doing this. After you've had enough fun, go to a church and donate your way up to 18 reputation. The cost will be insignificant with the amount of gold you should have.

    Also, you can get some rather interesting and high level spell scrolls. I believe a few mages accompany them.


    With that in mind, you can level up much faster, maybe even to 16 and get the Spell Trigger. Load it with 3 lower resistances and I think you can take out elder orbs then. For groups of non-magic resistant beholders/gauths, the skull trap sequencer should do the trick. Haste, run in, blow the sequencer and hope for the best.

    That's the best I can think of without using the cheese items. Otherwise I gotta do hit and run with a thief's traps and slings.
     
  7. saros Gems: 5/31
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    @Mountain Hare:

    I find the Cloak of Cheese extremely overpowered. Not to mention the fact that by using it, the last Ascension(and many other tough) battle is a piece of cake, especially with a solo warrior.

    The "Spell Shield" scroll isn't found as a fixed treasure, but rather as random treasure.

    I usually pick first Mordenkainen sword at lvl 14. The swords are overpowered. They seldom take damage(only magic and poison type damage, they are immune to all other types, including physical damage), cannot be stunned or confused(but can be Held by a Hold person,strange as it may seem), have excellent attacks, +4 enchantment and if buffed properly, deal one hell of a damage. Best this is illustrated in a group, where you can in one round buff the swords with Haste, Strength of One, Bless, Chant and Mass Invisibility.

    About the fact, that you never faced more than 3 beholders at once in SoA, I will give some examples:

    - if you are of high enough xp , then after the "Broken Bridge" section in the sewers under Temple District, you will face 3 Beholders and 3 Gauths.

    - there is a random beholder encounter(again 3 Beholders+3 Gauths) in the lair of the Unseeing Eye.

    - in the beholder tunnels in Underdark, there is at least one big beholder group, which consists of at least 3 Beholders and 3 Gauths, and has an additional Elder Orb.

    - in Hell Trials, the "Fear" trial has a group of 3 Elder Orbs and 3 Beholders, and your party has a serious problem with Morale(this place seems to have a perpetual Fear aura), and Resist Fear and Remove Fear don't help much really there.

    Well, Elder Orbs imprison.

    Delayed Blast Fireball has much more important uses than firing it against a Lich. It is the trap option of a Mage, in conjuction with Skull trap. And DBF is a high-level spell(while Skull Trap, being superior in damage and damage type, is a low-lvl spell), thus probable to hit enemies immune to low-level spells, or protected with GoI.

    The higher-level Spell Trigger and Chain Contingency are must-haves. But Spell Sequencer is also a must-have, especially for a solo. In fact, even the Minor Spell Sequencer is a must-have, as well as Contingency. If used right, these can win most of the fights, if not all.
     
  8. syuusaru Gems: 2/31
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    Hmm, I'm forgetting about the summons Nishruu and Hakaeshar. Aren't these mage-killers viable against beholders?
     
  9. The Mountain Hare Banned

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    Hey, yeah. Wouldn't skelly warriors just soak up most of the rays, due to their high Mag resistance?
     
  10. saros Gems: 5/31
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    Nishruu and Hakeashar must not be used in the vanilla game if it is not fixed by something like Baldurdash or G3 fixpack. Because these eat items which are not originally charged or something. With the fixpack they are modified so that they can only eat wands and other items with limited charges and no other abilities. For instance, the Staff of Power should not be consumed even when the charges are all consumed. And those little critters are eating even things like the Staff of the Magi, Robe of the Good Archmagi and many quest items BtW...

    Skeleton Warriors are quite resistant to magic, Nishruu and Hakeashar are immune to magic...except for Death Fog and Death spell. Death Ward doesn't help them at all. And each and every grown-up beholder has Death spell. The Elder Orbs have more than one.
     
  11. Sir Fink Gems: 13/31
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    While there's lots of good advice in this thread, I find myself thinking "dude, have you actually played this game?" Summons, for example, pretty much die instantly via a Death Spell or just eye beams. And even if your character is standing a good distance away from the Beholder with half a dozen summons between, those eye beams go straight for you! Those buggers are smart and will target you from extreme distances and their beams and spells will often go right through walls!

    Anti-magic ray is almost always the first thing fired at you and there go pretty much all of your buffs. In addition, you're suffering from arcane spell failure so re-buffing is not an option. And even with the Shield of Balduron you can get imprisoned, which is often the case for me. Plus the anti-magic ray dispells the Shield's ray reflection ability, so you're immune to the beams but still have to hack away at the Beholders and pray you don't get imprisoned.

    The point is, they are a serious pain to fight. And what about when you first enter the Hive in the Underdark? There's an Elder Orb right there in the first room so even if you've got one party member buffed and shielded properly, the rest of your party gets killed, stoned, imprisoned, etc.
     
  12. The Mountain Hare Banned

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    Fink, it's been over a year since I've last played BGII, so my memory is a little rusty. Especially with Beholders/Elder Orbs, who appear very infrequently throughout the series. Or this may be because I usually skipped the Unseeing Eye Quest, and the Beholder Lair in the Underdark.

    Fiends have 50% magic resist (from memory), and low saves. I wonder how well they would fair against Beholders?
     
  13. Decados

    Decados The Chosen One

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    Not sure how they'd fare, but Beholders grant a fair bit of EXP when killed, none of which you get if the fiend you just gated in scores the kill.
     
  14. syuusaru Gems: 2/31
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    Infinite exp can be achieved elsewhere (much more, much easier, and much faster too). Certain items can only be obtained in only 1 place. So exp doesn't matter. I imagine they'd make a decent distraction for you though.


    If you're going to use the shield of balduran, it's kinda cheesing already. If you're not a berserker, you can use the cheese glitch to cast a spell immunity to abjuration scroll.


    I found that the elder orbs don't cast imprisonment right away. They tend to attack and hurt you a bit first, gives you more than enough time to kill 'em. So you know what they say, the best defense is a good offense.

    The flail of ages slows the opponent on hit, so having a hasted fighter go up and smack 'em really good will do the trick. Slow incurs some heavy penalties and allows everyone to join in the fun.

    If you've got some strong weapons, you should be able to kill it before it can do too much damage.
     
  15. Stu Gems: 20/31
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    That would be more than a tad cheesy though, and many players would prefer to get their xp from a more legitimate source.

    What the hell was the shield intended for then?

    I agree 100% - Improve haste your warriors and just bash the hell out of them asap - take them out before they can let out too many of those beams or cast spells.
     
  16. The Mountain Hare Banned

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    stu:
    It's cheesy because the crummy Beholder AI will continue to fire their rays at you, despite the fact that they continue reflecting off the shield.

    Personally, I think the AI should be improved, so that once a Beholder is hit by one/a chain of its rays, it should try a different angle of attack.
     
  17. Silverstar Gems: 31/31
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    Tactics mode upgrade their AI so they don't kill themselves on Balduran's Shield. They do close up to do melee with their poison bites. Which hurt a lot. :mommy:
     
  18. Capt Massacre Gems: 5/31
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    Simple but cheesy: cloak of mirroring. Beholders are so horrible, I see no other way.
    Berserk against Elder Orbs.
    For the one in the beholder lair, make all your heroes invisible before you enter, the Orb will cast True Sight, but your berserker rushes on him while the others get out of sight.

    There's one Beholder in Spellhold you must kill with no cloak to help you. It's one of the major challenges of the game (you may pass).
    In my version of the game, Spell Immunity was of no help at all.
    Basically, there are 2 ways that seem to work.
    1. surround him with al your heroes (except PC), and summons if you will, and hack, hack, hack! Then use your scrolls to turn to flesh, raise, etc, because there are always victims.
    2. use a single berserker protected from petrification. The beholder will dispel that, but not before he has cast turn to stone once.
    Use oil of speed after the beholder has cast Slow
    If he gets canned, then other NPC's "finish" the Beholder (or the party...).
    The PC shouldn't take part because if he's killed/turned to stone, it's game over/reload = cheese.
     
  19. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    Meh, they're not as bad as illithids. Usually I just try to swarm them or avoid them altogether - in the beholder cult lair you don't actually need to fight them, and with some sneaking + invisibility potions you can loot most locations easily. In the Underdark, well, I usually go just for the loot as well, but apart from that, I tend to use haste and other buffs and summons to overwhelm them fast. It works okay, usually. The cheese cloak works great, too.

    My worst fight is usually with the main group of gauths? on the way to the Amauntor's temple in the Athkatla underground. There, I use summons to get the brunt of the first strike and then keep the damage on the little creeps, prepare all buffs and hope I won't have to reload too many times :D
     
  20. Silverstar Gems: 31/31
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    Lesser beholders can not see invisible people. So cast a Mislead, and approach them (keep your decoy out of their sight) and unleash your damaging spells to their ugly faces. They will not be able to see you, although they start wandering around once they take dmg, making it difficult to quickly kill them with basic but always efficient area effect spells such as fireball, or better, skull trap. Ofcourse, you can stick three skull traps in one spell sequencer and release it to their middle, this is generally more than enough to kill all gauths and bring beholders to near death.
     

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