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Bard's Tale The Bard's Tale Series

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Watser

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Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign
Which is the same as in BT2, but is it a necessity to keep one charactor slot open? In BT2 you had to keep a slot open for several snares and puzzles for monsters to join. If there is no such thing or only required in a few occasions then I would rather fill the last slot with a hunter.
You don't need the NPC at all in BT3 (and even in BT2 you could switch around between NPCs and your 7th PC, that's what I did). Hunters are great, but you probably want a Thief for BT3. They're useless in BT1-2 but I don't think it's actually possible to finish BT3 without one. Not sure about that though.

Also Monks become drastically less effective in BT3, which probably makes them a perfect candidate for the Geomancer.
Even if it wasn't necessary in BT2 you needed an empty slot often enough to make it a nuisance with a full party. A thief? Are they suddenly more useful or are they still just as shitty but required in certain parts of the game? If it's just for a puzzle I'll probably roll a hunter and take the thief with me when needed be.

My monk was already considerably weaker compared to my paladin and even my bard (thanks to the spectre snare though) in BT2. His damage output is just too low so rolling him as a geomancer rather than my paladin is a good idea.
 

octavius

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[You don't need the NPC at all in BT3 (and even in BT2 you could switch around between NPCs and your 7th PC, that's what I did). Hunters are great, but you probably want a Thief for BT3. They're useless in BT1-2 but I don't think it's actually possible to finish BT3 without one. Not sure about that though.

Personally I found it more interesting with a monster or NPC as the 7th member.
In BT1 the Red Dragon summon rules the mid game.

Also Monks become drastically less effective in BT3, which probably makes them a perfect candidate for the Geomancer.

That was my experience too.

A thief? Are they suddenly more useful or are they still just as shitty but required in certain parts of the game?

Very useful, since they can advance towards distant enemies when other party members can't. Very important in at least one key battle.
 

Sceptic

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Divinity: Original Sin
Even if it wasn't necessary in BT2 you needed an empty slot often enough to make it a nuisance with a full party.
There's at least the one snare where you need 3 slots so you need to shuffle anyway. I didn't know it at the time but I was trying to have my 7th PC (3rd mage) catch up to the others and it turns out it doesn't matter since finishing the started dungeon of BT3 sets everyone's level to 36 regardless of the XP they had previously.

A thief? Are they suddenly more useful or are they still just as shitty but required in certain parts of the game?
Both as octavius pointed out. If you really want crits you'll have to just hope you get a stone blade (I never got one in the entire trilogy). There's at least one more crit weapon you're guaranteed to get towards the end of BT3.

My monk was already considerably weaker compared to my paladin and even my bard (thanks to the spectre snare though) in BT2. His damage output is just too low so rolling him as a geomancer rather than my paladin is a good idea.
Paladin's class special is amazing so you definitely don't want to lose him. As for the Bard I really think giving him a Bardsword or equivalent is the best, since it gives them unlimited singing.

Personally I found it more interesting with a monster or NPC as the 7th member.
In BT1 the Red Dragon summon rules the mid game.
You can't have a 7th PC in BT1 anyway, so you definitely want to fill that slot with a summon (Thor was amazing in the endgame). On a first run I guess it IS fun to use the NPCs, but when I replay the trilogy I'll probably stick to my full 7-member party for BT2-3 (except for Snares obviously)

It would also be fun to find out if you can have 2 Hawkwinds in BT3 at the same time.
 
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Watser

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Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign
There's at least the one snare where you need 3 slots so you need to shuffle anyway. I didn't know it at the time but I was trying to have my 7th PC (3rd mage) catch up to the others and it turns out it doesn't matter since finishing the started dungeon of BT3 sets everyone's level to 36 regardless of the XP they had previously.
Yeah and I raged pretty hard at that snare for having to go back to town once I figured out what I had to do.
Everyone gaining lvl 36 by the end of the starter dungeon is a bit of a bummer, my front row wont get any benefit from the increased stat cap as they are all 37 apart from my monk. But if I can change my monk to geomancer beforehand it wouldn't be too bad. It's excellent news for my 3 archmages since through the entire trip in BT2 they only managed to gain lvl 8. The manual says I need a chronomancer so may as well switch one of them right away then.
My bard carried a bardsong throughout BT1 but changed it in a heartbeat once I got the spectre snare in mangars tower. Once my hard was lvl 20+ I never really ran out of voice.

The final dungeon in BT2 was piss easy compared to some of the other devilish tricks used in the other dungeons. The encounters, however, are not to be underestimated. Thankfully I had a pair of speedboots so I could run from every encounter else I would probably never have gotten through it. The encounter rate from 1 -> 2 seemed to increase by a lot, however as the game progressed it felt like it slowly decreased. Now that I am in the start of BT3 it again feels like I can't turn to either side without triggering an encounter which is infuriating to say the least.

All in all I am having a good time playing through the series, specially the dungeons in BT2 were loads of fun.
 

CryptRat

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I am probably going to play Bard's Tale 1 soon and I may eventually play the trilogy. Are the Amiga versions OK in that case, or should I play other versions?
 

octavius

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I am probably going to play Bard's Tale 1 soon and I may eventually play the trilogy. Are the Amiga version OK in that case, or should I play other versions?

There's an integer overflow bug with the Hunter's critical strike ability (it resets every 16th level) in BT1 and/or BT2.
If you avoid the Hunter class it's the best version. If not the Apple II LGS is probably the optimal choice.

Personally I was totally blown away by the audiovisuals of Amiga version of BT1 (my first Amiga game), especially the monks' chant from Monty Python. The LGS version has comparable graphics, but I'm not sure about the sound.
 
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Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign
Amiga and Apple II GS are considered the best versions for BT1 and 2. I am playing the DOS version since I couldnt get the Apple emulator to work and im much more familiar with the DOS emulator. Also easy transfer between games. The most notably and immediately obvious flaw with the DOS version is the god awful sound which is a shame as you are supposed to listen to your bard playing tunes while you go on adventuring. I have just had the game muted.
 

CryptRat

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Thanks dudes.
I think I should have read the thread before asking. It looks like the Amiga version is not a good idea if I intend to carry my characters up to Bard's Tale 3, right?
Maybe I'll just stick to the DOS versions (and play without song) if it's the most convenient way to play the 3 games.
Back in the day I've played a part of the first game afterwards, but the first one I've played was Bard's Tale 3 (I played both on Amiga) and I have to say that this intro is one of the intros which evoke me the most nostalgia :

And yes, listening to the bard songs was an awesome feature but I guess I'll have to do without that, that's OK.
 

Sceptic

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Maybe I'll just stick to the DOS versions (and play without song) if it's the most convenient way to play the 3 games.
With drifting's patches (be SURE to grab those for BT2-3, there are links earlier in the thread) the DOS versions are indeed the most convenient and most bug-free if you want to play the whole trilogy, even though they're sadly not the most good looking and sounding.
 

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you probably want a Thief for BT3. They're useless in BT1-2 but I don't think it's actually possible to finish BT3 without one. Not sure about that though.

You don't actually need one. The game really wants you to sneak up and backstab distant boss-type enemies, but I'm 95% sure you can also just cast Melee Men and pull in troublesome ranged enemies. And then you don't have to burn a slot on a rogue. It fits the grand tradition of D&D-inspired games, in which generalist mages with large spell lists eventually become the best at everything.
 
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Sceptic

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I thought you absolutely needed one on Tarjan and nothing else worked, but I'm not sure now that you mention it.

EDIT: I think you do need a Thief there because Tarjan is immune to magic.
 

Kayerts

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I'm nearly certain I didn't have one when I beat it, though that was many years ago for me. Maybe I'm misremembering some aspect of how it went down--the summoning suppression spell definitely can be cast in the final battle, so maybe that was it?

Apparently someone on this very forum confirms the thief isn't needed, calling it "the biggest lie of gaming history." This seems pretty optimistic about gaming history to me, but it's at least independent confirmation.

(Although only a rogue can equip Sceadu's cloak, which you definitely do need to use once to win, so, maybe my memory's just fuzzy. Or maybe I noticed this, trekked back to Skara Brae, hired a level 1 rogue for that, and ditched him immediately after handling that.)
 

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Codex 2014
Michael Cranford will do a Classic Game Postmortem of The Bard's Tale 1 and 2 at GDC: https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news...Classic_Game_Postmortem_of_The_Bards_Tale.php

GDC 2018 will host a Classic Game Postmortem of The Bard's Tale!

Game Developers Conference 2018 officials are thrilled to announce that a game industry veteran is coming to the show to deliver a fascinating look back at one of the foundational pillars of the role-playing game genre.

Dr. Michael Cranford, a multi-talented game designer and programmer who has done significant work both within the game industry and without, will be at GDC 2018 in San Francisco next March to present a postmortem look at the making of The Bard's Tale I & II!

Cranford co-created The Bard's Tale, which debuted on the Apple II in 1985 and spawned a series of beloved games. Anticipation is building for inXile Entertainment's The Bard's Tale IV, the long-awaited next chapter, and in his GDC 2018 presentation he'll revisit the first two games and explore why they're still relevant to game makers today.

It's poised to be a remarkable session, as Cranford aims to give a behind-the-scenes look at the development of these classic games, touching on topics like game difficulty, the influence of Dungeons & Dragons, why he wove elements of Christianity into the design (and why it struck him as amusing that no one questioned it during development), and the need for integration of strategic and action elements in game design.

As always, this Classic Game Postmortem will be an hour-long session, so we figured you might appreciate the heads-up so you can keep this exciting talk on your radar! In the months ahead, conference officials look forward to announcing many more GDC 2018 sessions spanning a diverse array of game industry issues.

For more information on GDC 2018, visit the show's official website, or subscribe to regular updates via Facebook, Twitter, or RSS.
 

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RPG Wokedex Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
Oh that's interesting. No doubt it's being timed to promote BT4.
 

Aildrik

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Awesome. I enjoy hearing about game development from that era and how different it was from today. I am always amused at stories of how things were at places like Origin where you had such a small staff of people putting out these awesome, classic games. Looks like it has come full circle to some degree as I have found some real gems in indie games on Steam. Just goes to show that solid, fun gameplay doesn't require a budget of millions and an army of people.
 

octavius

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The name “Bard’s Tale”, and the city called Skara Brae, were suggested by an RPG consultant that was pushed on them. (All his other suggestions were terrible.)

Roe R. Adams III aka "Hawkwind"?
 

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RPG Wokedex Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker


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