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Gold Box SSI's Gold Box Series Thread

What are your favorite Gold Box games?

  • Pool of Radiance

  • Curse of the Azure Bonds

  • Secret of the Silver Blades

  • Pools of Darkness

  • Champions of Krynn

  • Death Knights of Krynn

  • The Dark Queen of Krynn

  • Gateway to the Savage Frontier

  • Treasures of the Savage Frontier

  • Buck Rogers: Countdown to Doomsday

  • Buck Rogers: Matrix Cubed

  • Forgotten Realms: Unlimited Adventures (FRUA)


Results are only viewable after voting.

ProphetSword

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There's two ways to approach this series. You can either do as some people suggest and go for optimal human party using newfangled tools like a casual gamer, or you can go full hardcore mode and play the game as intended in full 1980s AD&D style with a party of mixed races and beat the game on the merits of your skill.

C'mon, I know you want to stand toe-to-toe with the hardcore AD&D Gold-Box crowd. Just do it.
 

agentorange

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Codex 2012
All the young and immature kids had Nintendos, while older and more mature kids had computers.
The older and more mature kids mostly grew up, and are no longer gaming. The Nintendo kids didn't.
What if I had a computer, grew up, and am still gaming on a computer?

Also if I get the GOG versions of these are there any additional patches/fixes that I should download for them? Is this Goldbox Companion a must?
 

Incendax

Augur
Joined
Jul 4, 2010
Messages
756
Not sifting through 134 pages, but you can import between Pools of Radiance > Gateway > Curse > Treasures > Secret > Pools of Darkness and have one big story with only a small amount of item corruption.
 

Cael

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Just be aware if you use the race hack to bypass level limits with the Goldbox companion that the multi-class characters will be quite gimped compared to a dual-classed human by the end of Pools of Darkness. I did a playthrough of all 4 games a year or two ago using the race hack with about half my party as demi-humans and there was like 50-60 hp difference between my human frontliners and demi-humans iirc. I didn't maximize hp gain on level like some people do, so it's possible if you do that as well the end hp's would be closer.
I don't know about multi and dual being all that different. I went through the Krynn series with 1 human knight and 5 Qualinesti Elf F/C/M and it turned out fine. This is the game that has the dragonlance, which does your current HP in damage to dragons, so you want your HP as high as possible when you run into battles with 5+ dragons...
 

Breshard

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It's because of how the hit points are allotted after the hit dice rolls at level 10 or whatever, human fighter classes get 3 per level but multiclasses get the hp they gain halved or more depending on how many classes you do and when it halves 3 it always rounds down to 1. So between not getting more than 1 hp for a majority of your levels and most likely not wanting to grind your multi classers levels all the way to 40 in PoD the difference will probably be pretty large. If you actually took the time to get up to like 40 fighter/mage or whatever it would closer though.

I just looked at my winning party from Death Knights of Krynn and the same held true there. My human knight has 50 hp more than my ranger/cleric and thief/cleric and 70 hp more than my fighter/mage after a full 3 game playthrough.
 

Incendax

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I just looked at my winning party from Death Knights of Krynn and the same held true there. My human knight has 50 hp more than my ranger/cleric and thief/cleric and 70 hp more than my fighter/mage after a full 3 game playthrough.
Knights get more HP than any other class. For reasons.
 

Cael

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I just looked at my winning party from Death Knights of Krynn and the same held true there. My human knight has 50 hp more than my ranger/cleric and thief/cleric and 70 hp more than my fighter/mage after a full 3 game playthrough.
Knights get more HP than any other class. For reasons.
Only +2/level after the initial stages. Fighters and paladins get 3, IIRC.
 

Cael

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It's because of how the hit points are allotted after the hit dice rolls at level 10 or whatever, human fighter classes get 3 per level but multiclasses get the hp they gain halved or more depending on how many classes you do and when it halves 3 it always rounds down to 1. So between not getting more than 1 hp for a majority of your levels and most likely not wanting to grind your multi classers levels all the way to 40 in PoD the difference will probably be pretty large. If you actually took the time to get up to like 40 fighter/mage or whatever it would closer though.

I just looked at my winning party from Death Knights of Krynn and the same held true there. My human knight has 50 hp more than my ranger/cleric and thief/cleric and 70 hp more than my fighter/mage after a full 3 game playthrough.
50 would be about right for a knight vs f/c/m comparison. The difference is that a dragon has about 88 hp at the highest difficulty, so both will still kill one with 1 shot of the dragonlance at full hp at the start of Dark Queen, IIRC.
 

rezaf

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Jan 26, 2015
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605
I'm going to disagree with this.

I'll disagree with the disagreement - it's an unfortunate reality.

Secret of the Silver Blades manual said:
Maximum Level Limits By Race, Class and Prime Requisite


------------------------------------------------------------------------
Class Ability Dwarf' Elf' Gnome' Half-Elf' Halfling' Human
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cleric Any no no no 5 no 15*

Fighter STR 16- 7 5 5 5 6 15*
STR 17 8 6 5 7 5 15*
STR 18+ 9 7 6 8 no 15*

Paladin Any no no no no no 15*

Ranger STR 16- no no no 6 no 15*
STR 17 no no no 7 no 15*
STR 18+ no no no 8 no 15*

Magic-User INT 16- no 9 no 6 no 15*
INT 17 no 10 no 7 no 15*
INT 18+ no 11 no 8 no 15*

Thief Any 18* 18* 18* 18* 18* 18*

Though you might see that you'll be able to continue advancing as a thief, so that's at least something.
A Half-Elf Fighter/Cleric/Magic-User with subpar stats can almost reach his level cap IN ALL CLASSES in Pool of Radiance, and he has three games to go. Keeping such character is more like a measure of deliberately increasing difficulty.

When I played throug the entire series with the same chars, I just edited the savefiles after PoR and turned fighters into rangers or paladins if I wanted those instead. Problem solved.
 

ProphetSword

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I'll disagree with the disagreement - it's an unfortunate reality.

A Half-Elf Fighter/Cleric/Magic-User with subpar stats can almost reach his level cap IN ALL CLASSES in Pool of Radiance, and he has three games to go. Keeping such character is more like a measure of deliberately increasing difficulty.

That's fair. But, as I said in my response, my disagreement is with the assertion that they aren't viable characters, which is completely untrue. My party always has two multiclassed characters in it (I always play the same party). If you include FRUA modules, I have played a ton of Gold-Box games at various levels (including level 40) with those characters in the party, and they haven't had an issue being useful or surviving fights. To be fair, I'm quite good at the tactics of the game after all these years, and that does play some factor in their ability to survive, but I wouldn't call it difficult by any stretch.

My point is this: I hear a lot of people say "Don't play multiclass characters," to which my response is: "Don't listen to people who say this; I've done it for years and I've never had an issue."
 

Dorateen

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My point is this: I hear a lot of people say "Don't play multiclass characters," to which my response is: "Don't listen to people who say this; I've done it for years and I've never had an issue."

I will back you up on this. Played Pools of Darkness with a party that included a dwarf fighter, who still gets a ton of hit points because of high constitution, and also good magic resistance. Also had a multi class elf fighter/magic-user.
 

JarlFrank

I like Thief THIS much
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There's two ways to approach this series. You can either do as some people suggest and go for optimal human party using newfangled tools like a casual gamer, or you can go full hardcore mode and play the game as intended in full 1980s AD&D style with a party of mixed races and beat the game on the merits of your skill.

C'mon, I know you want to stand toe-to-toe with the hardcore AD&D Gold-Box crowd. Just do it.

Fun fact: Gygax put the level limit on non-human races because he wanted to encourage people to play humans (or, rather, discourage them from playing elves and shit) :M
 

ProphetSword

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I will back you up on this. Played Pools of Darkness with a party that included a dwarf fighter, who still gets a ton of hit points because of high constitution, and also good magic resistance. Also had a multi class elf fighter/magic-user.

Thanks for that. And I'm not just saying that because we both have signatures quoting Iron Maiden songs from the same album.
 

rezaf

Arbiter
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Jan 26, 2015
Messages
605
I will back you up on this. Played Pools of Darkness with a party that included a dwarf fighter, who still gets a ton of hit points because of high constitution, and also good magic resistance. Also had a multi class elf fighter/magic-user.

Thanks for that. And I'm not just saying that because we both have signatures quoting Iron Maiden songs from the same album.

It's nice that you two agree on this, but it's still ... alternative facts. The level tables don't lie.
A Dwarven Fighter/Thief can remain borderline viable, because he'll keep gaining thief levels - as I mentioned in my previous post - but all multiclasses not containing a thief are royally screwed. Well, except if you want to have them around as artificial difficulty increase. High const does jack shit when you're not gaining levels in AD&D.

Seriously, try it now if you want. I actually did it. If you create a half-elf F/C/M at the start of CotAB he has a lousy HP max of like 30 - because the game assumes you have not grinded in PoR and thus you get to be lvl 4/4/3 or something. If you create one for SotSB he has 56 HP or thereabout at level 5/6/6. PoD then assumes you have only gained a single level and start you out as a 5/7/6 with 61 HP. And he's basically maxed out at this point. A human fighter starts the game with 141 HP max.

Now, I know you must know all that stuff, because you're the Dungeon Craft guy, but this obviously means you know all the ins and outs of those games and also how to play in a way that might maximise your parties chance of survival. For a more haphazard newbie, playing with such subpar characters can ruin the game IMO.
That said, earlier in the series those characters can be very useful, especially in PoR, because having such a versatile character can be a real boon - tons of sleep spells in a game with many low-level enemies with few resistances are an obvious help. You can get fireball with these guys, and it takes a while to reach the stage of the games where this loses it's potency.
However, they are also chronically low on HP and attacks or spells that make you cringe when another of your chars loses 1/3 of their health outright kill these fellas.
Which is what I was basing my statement on.
 

ProphetSword

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You can argue this all you want, but my experiences are my experiences and my multi class characters have been perfectly viable at high levels in every game I have played with them. The numbers in the book and the hit points don’t tell the whole story, I’m afraid.
 

Ruhfuss

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Oct 19, 2015
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Pool of Murkiness
So, after a ~ 2 1/2 years hiatus, I recently finished my PoD campaign. Also finally got to the reward area of Dave's Challenge; only took me ~ 27 years for that. The last time, I got stuck at the "mystic clue" bullshit and rage-quit hard.

The reward was nice, but kind of pointless, right before party retirement.

This was a full GSF -> CotAB -> SotSB -> PoD run with the same PCs.

PoD finishing XP: ~ 13.000.000+ (active Magic-Users / no grinding, really!)

Party stats:

Paladin(17) / Cleric(40) | AC -20 | HP 196
Ranger(17) / Thief(40) | AC -19 | HP 192
Ranger(15) / Magic-User(40) | AC -19 | HP 167
Ranger(15) / Magic-User(40) | AC -19 | HP 167
Paladin(13) / Magic-User(40) | AC -19 | HP 165
Paladin(13) / Magic-User(40) | AC -19 | HP 165

I'm thinking about doing another Krynn run, again. Without memorizing FB or DBF for a change.

EDIT:
For laughs, I had to win the regular PoD final battle twice, because I used a modified startup script to speed-launch the game, which causes a crash when the game wants to play a "movie", which happens right after winning the final battle, which in turn made me like
:what::rage::thingsareokay:
 
Last edited:

DavidBVal

4 Dimension Games
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PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy Insert Title Here RPG Wokedex Strap Yourselves In Pathfinder: Kingmaker
So, after a ~ 2 1/2 years hiatus, I recently finished my PoD campaign. Also finally got to the reward area of Dave's Challenge; only took me ~ 27 years for that. The last time, I got stuck at the "mystic clue" bullshit and rage-quit hard.

The reward was nice, but kind of pointless, right before party retirement.

:bro::bro::bro:

Man, I feel your pain with the fucking mystic clue. I could only solve it many years later, myself. Oh well.
 

Incendax

Augur
Joined
Jul 4, 2010
Messages
756
You can argue this all you want, but my experiences are my experiences and my multi class characters have been perfectly viable at high levels in every game I have played with them. The numbers in the book and the hit points don’t tell the whole story, I’m afraid.
Some people experience pleasure when they stab themslves. Some people like playing Diablo with no items. Some people love Mario with no jumping. I only ask that you record it for our amusement. =D
 

Dux

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There's this endgame fight in Treasures of the Savage Frontier with a lot of enemy fighters, as well as about ten or so spread out high-level clerics who all get to bombard your party with Hold Person before you even get a word in edgewise.

:prosper::prosper::prosper:
 

Cael

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There's this endgame fight in Treasures of the Savage Frontier with a lot of enemy fighters, as well as about ten or so spread out high-level clerics who all get to bombard your party with Hold Person before you even get a word in edgewise.

:prosper::prosper::prosper:
And after that is the fight with Freezefire?

Tip: Fireball.

Save Stinking Clouds for the dragon.
 

Dux

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Yeah but if your wizard is held in round 1 - which is not far-fetched let's be honest - then it's really tough to crowd control in any way, considering the clerics are spread out all over the area. Or if your main tank fails the initial saving throw and is summarily executed before even getting the chance to move. Hold Person is great when it works for you but when it's used against you in that magnitude, it sort of highlights just how broken it is from a pure gameplay perspective. If you have any degree of bad luck it's basically a one-shot kill: an acute pain in my balls and soul. Even if you get some Charms off or a Fireball, the chances that you're going to see round 2 with 60% of your party still intact is slim, to say the least. Pisses me off that Invisibility 10 Radius doesn't seem to work, either. It's supposed to prevent on-target castings (right?) but the AI don't give a shit, clearly.

Freezefire was a breeze in comparison.
 

Cael

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Yeah but if your wizard is held in round 1 - which is not far-fetched let's be honest - then it's really tough to crowd control in any way, considering the clerics are spread out all over the area. Or if your main tank fails the initial saving throw and is summarily executed before even getting the chance to move. Hold Person is great when it works for you but when it's used against you in that magnitude, it sort of highlights just how broken it is from a pure gameplay perspective. If you have any degree of bad luck it's basically a one-shot kill: an acute pain in my balls and soul. Even if you get some Charms off or a Fireball, the chances that you're going to see round 2 with 60% of your party still intact is slim, to say the least. Pisses me off that Invisibility 10 Radius doesn't seem to work, either. It's supposed to prevent on-target castings (right?) but the AI don't give a shit, clearly.

Freezefire was a breeze in comparison.
Ah. You don't play with multiple mages. I dual the hell out of my guys, with three Ranger/Mage and a Paladin/Mage as an absolute minimum.
 

Dux

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Nah. I've always kept things simple and neat with pure classes - mostly. To my detriment, as it turns out. I mean, I still beat the game, but maybe I could've spared myself a lot of frustration in the end.
 

Incendax

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Jul 4, 2010
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Interesting that you used characters from GSF, somehow I forgot you could do that...
I love Pool of Radiance as much as any grognard, but GSF > COTAB > TSF > SSB > POD is probably a better story and more coherent timeline.

Though you can always do POR > GSF if you don't mind being horribly high level for GSF. That packs in as much goldbox as possible.
 
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