NEVERWINTER NIGHTS - Cleric Guide v1.3 Copyright (c) Silverforce, 2002
- Class Summary
- Skills Indepth
- Feats (guideline)
2. Cleric Domains
3. Cleric Spells
4. Variant Focus
- Pure Spell Caster
5. Multiplayer Clerics
- Team Orientated
- Solo Adventurer
- PvP or Duelist
6. Miscellaneous Tactics
7. Persistant World Related
1.3 - (21/6/03) error correction, added new information for Divine Power in
the Varian Focus section under Melee. Also changed a bunch of variants.
1.2 - (11/2/03) added spells section, and other minor details including error
correction also added a special persistant world section.
1.1 - (24/8/02) initial release
Clerics can be summed up as a powerful class that has often been looked
down upon, because people have stereotyped them to being a "walking bandaid", or"religious zealot". The truth however, is far from that. They are a very unique
class, along with druids, in that they are a mix of the best aspects of several
classes rolled into one. Due to being so versatile, they have many roles, from
the battlefield medic/healer, front line fighter, to temple guardians who can
unleash great magical forces against the unbelievers.
This guide is designed to help others how to ultilize the cleric's
potential to its fullest in all aspects of the path he/she/unknown has chosen.
It could be expanded in the future, when and if people submit their own variant
type, so it may be a work in progress. I for one won't ever say that this will
be the "end all" of cleric guides.. as that would be arrogant, but i do have a
bit (tiny bit!) of experience to share.. so let's get started! :)
- Divine Spell casting (wisdom based, no impact from wearing heavy armors)
- Decent hit dice: 1D8
- Good attack bonuses: 15/10/5 @ lvl 20
- Spontaneous Cast @ lvl 1 (can cast healing spells without prior memorization)
- Turn Undead @ lvl 1 (run undead, run!)
- All armors and shields, all simple weapons.
- 2 skill point + intelligence bonus per level.
- 2 Domain that gives additional abilities
SKILLS INDEPTH: (cleric focused, but also applies generally to other classes)
* Just an outline for you to understand the way the skills work, if you need it
then by all means take skills in it, this is especially true for persistent
Ability to cast spells without interruption. The DC (difficulty check) is 10 +
damage received + spell lvl. So a cleric whom is trying to cast a lvl 3 spell, but
is hit for 5 damage while she is casting, will have a DC roll required to cast
succesfully of 10 + 5 + 3 = 18. She rolls (the pc rolls, but all intent & purposes,
she rolls. heh), a 1D20, and any skill in concentration is added onto that result.
If she rolls a 10, she must have 8 points in concentration to be able to cast the
spell, otherwise she failed and the spell fizzles wastefully. This skill is a must
for clerics who plans to cast spells. You like casting spells? Then take it as
high as possible, simple as that.
Disable Trap -
Not entirely useless, but not very usefull either. Why? Because the difficult
traps that you want to disable, you can't, since the DC check is way too high.
While the low end traps, aren't powerful enough to really hurt you. All in all,
if you really want to discard of a pesky floor trap, summon a creature, and move
so it triggers the trap for you. If it's a trapped chest, destroy it with a
spell or range weapon.
While the description may sound as though you need it, you shoudn't bother
wasting points in here. Yes, you do need it, but, here's the big BUT.. it isn't
a cleric skill, so you can't raise it high enough where it can help. The DC is
the modified attack roll of the enemy, and tough enemies have a very high attack
bonus, so you'll never be able to resist their attempts anyway. The real solution
against knockdown, disarm, called shot is not to be hit in the first place, or
get items which grant you immunity to it.
*(21/7/03) However, if you play on a server where there are no such items, and
you are a melee cleric, you will need to put points into this skill. Skills in
discipline and wearing gloves such as Greater Discipline (+6), and taking the
feat Skill Focus (Discipline) will give you a very high score, enough to resist
the majority of knockdown/disarm attempts.
It is relatively useful, at maxed lvl, it's 23 + wisdom bonus (+5 usually), it's
28. So you can heal 1D20 + 28 + medikit bonus during battles, or 20 + 28 + medikit
bonus outside battles. All in all, it is a lot cheaper than potions. This skill
however, isn't needed if you play in Normal Mode, but if you play Hardcore Rules,
you will need it. Hardcore Rules will allow an attack of opportunity against you
if you drink potions, whereas Heal with medikits won't. It's up to you, though
myself, i don't take it, since gold is plenty so i never run out of potions, and
therefore, it's wasted skill points.
Hide/Move Silently/Set Trap/Open Lock/Listen/Search/Pick Pocket/Spot -
Wow, that's a lot of skills rolled into one big lumpy group. ;) The reason they
are all here is because they are either a) non class skill that is useless, or b)
class skill (hide) that is useless.
Hide could be useful if you plan on playing a lightly armored range attack, or
battlefield medic, but if you plan on being a person of action then it isn't
useful. Hide without Move Silently basically makes you on sitting duck. The other
skills are usefull, but they are limited to how high they can get, so their use
will be obsolete as you face enemies that are worthy of standing before you and
not die due to one poke. Example: Spot at lvl 12 won't help you against a good
rogue who is trying to stealth and sneak attack you, since his steath skill will
be much higher than yours.
Skill points spent so you can save a hundred gold per identify, do you think it's
worth it? I don't. Gold is a plenty beyond the early stages of the game. Spending
all your precious skill points to save gold isn't a good idea.
It is useful if you base your character solely on using this skill. It's a
different play style, since battles take longer, it feels more like an epic. Parry
isn't totally crap, if you get it beyond 30, and have plenty of attacks, backed up
with a high AC it is decent. I won't however, go into the full details of making
a parrying cleric, i prefer a parrying monk.. for reasons i won't go into further
details, as it could end up a very long essay. heh. Ultimately, unless you are
focusing everything (feats, skills, ability points, weapon choice, armor choice,
spell choices) towards making parry effective, then don't bother.
Good in singleplayer mode, or player designed campaign that relies on role playing,
and talking to get things your way. With a high skill, you can often get bonus
rewards, deeper conversation topics, and a general feeling that "hey, NWN isn't
just a hack & slash".. :) I would take points towards this, if it weren't for one
Incredibly useful. Far from all the other skills. That's how good this skill is.
The thing that makes this skill great isn't because it allows you to identify the
spells casted by others, but it's due to the extra bonus. Every 5 points you have
in this skill, you gain a +1 bonus towards all your saves against magic. It won't
show up in your character sheet, but it does indeed show up behind the scenes where
the computer calculates all your rolls, you can see it working during the feedback
from a save against spells. Say you had a reflex save of 8, and had 10 in spell
craft, you saved the fireball at a +10, not +8. This skill is also a cleric skill,
so you can get up to 23 in it. If you buff up intelligence, you can gain a bonus
and end up with 25 in spellcraft. That is a +5 bonus to all magic saves. Basically
it's a Ring of Resistance +5, just not on your fingers. ;)
Another skill i would invest in if it werent for the fact that spellcraft is more
useful. Good gainst melee classes, who don't often have a high skill in concentration
to resist it. It lowers their AC up to -6 for 5 rounds, so it might offer some help
for melee clerics. Though, since clerics only get 2 skills per lvl, there just
isnt enough skills for Taunt.. perhaps a different cleric variant, with higher
intelligence to have plenty of skill points could make use of this, otherwise,
don't bother. Though humans do gain +skills, so you can use taunt with them.
It is up to you to read the game manual to decide which feats help your character
the best, since different variants will obviously rely on different feats.
A few things i want to point out: Sap isnt for the PC, it's only used by the NPCs
against you. Called Shot won't work with range weapon, yes, incredibly dumb on
bioware's part, but apparently the engine forgot to apply skills to missile
These feats: Great Fortitude, Lightning Reflex, Iron Will, & Toughness are good
enough to deserve a selection. BUT, only take them if you don't have a better feat
to take for your particular character design.
If you plan to cast spells, especially ones that harm or enchant your enemies, it
is wise to select Spell Focus and select Evocation or Enchantment. If you plan on
casting spells at all against enemies, Spell Penetration is a must since clerics
do not have wizard spells to lower an enemy's Spell Resistance.
Also when i suggest feats for the different variants, i will list them from the
order you should try to get them, since certain feats aren't needed or available
until you are high level.
2. CLERIC DOMAINS
I will assume you have already READ THE MANUAL and understand what these domains
give you, so i won't be copying tables or menus from the manual. I also personally
dislike guides that do that. :) However, i will extrapolate their in game usage
and how effective they are at helping you out.
AIR - The only real advantage from this domain is to gain call lightning @ lvl 3
spell slot. Clerics lack an offensive spell at level 3 (besides searing light), so
this really contributes to make them a very potent spell caster. Unless you are
walking around naked, Elementals won't ever pose a threat to you, so turning them
is moot since they are easily disposed of. Chain Lightning is a good spell for
wizards, but since Clerics gain one of the strongest spell in the game at level 6,
Blade Barrier, which is superior in all ways compared to Chain Lightning, it's
pointless to take AIR because of it. If you do pick it, consider taking the feat
spell focus (evocation) to make it more worthwhile.
ANIMAL - Every summon you call in will be 1 level higher than normal. So a Summon
Creature IV would normally be a Dire Spider, would now be a Dire Bear. This goes
all the way up to VIII, where you can summon the most powerful elemental, and save
a 9th spell slot for something else. Turning animals, well, again, i can't think
of an animal that really poses a threat to a cleric.. so to me, turning them isn't
that important. This domain is great for those who want to hang back and cast spell
or use range weapons.
DEATH - Phantasmal Killer is an ok spell for mid level, but later on it is easily
saved against. Enervation is useless, and a waste of a 5th spell slot, since two
very important Cleric spell occur at 5th level, Slay Living and Spell Resistance.
The Shadow you get for picking this domain is UTTERLY useless besides looking mean
and nasty. Your summons will be stronger than it, & you can't summon an animal AND
have a shadow at the same time, so this makes DEATH one of the worser domains to pick.
DESTRUCTION - Acid fog deals negligible damage, it's basically a melf's acid arrow
with a big radius. It's a 6th level spell as well. Turning constructs would be
good, but the ones you can turn are so weak you can destroy them easily, but the
tougher ones you can't destroy via turning since your level isn't doubled theirs
makes it useless. Anything to scatter your foes does more harm than good, since
you have a lot of area effect spells. You want them all bunched up nice and tight.
Get my drift? Don't take this domain.
EARTH - Nice for 4th level stoneskin, but the domain MAGIC offers the same and
extras. Turning elemental, well, i've been through this already, haven't i? :)
EVIL - Gives you 3 necromancy spells, that allows a saving throw to avoid the
effects. They are low level as well, so their DC will never be high enough to
really hurt tough creatures. Turning outsiders would have been good if it works
against lvl 20 monks, but since you need to be a level 40 cleric to instant kill a
monk it isn't going to happen. Also lvl 20 trying to turn lvl 20 isn't going to do
squat. I guess NWN doesn't want people to be evil does it? heh
GOOD - Nothing special here, stoneskin is available via EARTH or MAGIC domains, and
them both are better than this.
HEALING - All healing spells are 50% more effective. Great, huh? Not really. Why?
Potions are cheap, medikits are even cheaper. Resting is free. Could be useful IF
you played in a module that restricts resting, and makes potions more expensive,
as they should be.. or make gold harder to find. BUT currently, healing via spells
is a waste of a spell slot that can be used to attack or disable enemies, and boost
allies. If you want to heal someone, run around with medikits.
KNOWLEDGE - The only decent one here is True Seeing, and it isnt that useful in
the single player campaign. The only good use for it would be in PvP against
rogues, but a good rogue would know to use items to protect them against it, so in
the end, True Seeing is worthless. This domain is just as bad as DEATH.
MAGIC - One of the better domains to take. There's 2 real reason to take this,
stoneskin, and icestorm. Icestorm is nice since it scales up very well all the way
to level 20, and it's superior to flamestrike since it does not allow a saving
throw to 1/2 damage. With this domain, you basically obtain one of the better
spells wizards/sorcerors get to have. :) Stoneskin is always nice.
PLANT - Barkskin gives you natural armor boost, something your amulet already gives
you, and if you decide not to wear natural armor amulets, then drink a potion, it's
cheap, hence, the barkskin spell is useless. Creeping doom is inferior to 7th level
spell Destruction so it's not worth it. Turn vermin, ack. Stay away.
PROTECTION - You want protection from magic? Simply cast spell resistance to boost
your SR all the way up. Another useless domain.
STRENGTH - Divine Power available at level 3, and again at level 4. More joy for
those who likes to bash the skulls of their enemies in with a big weapon. :)
Stoneskin for some real protection. A good domain for melee clerics.
SUN - The real shine of this domain is the fact it gives you Searing Light at
level 2, increasing your arsenal of offensive spells by a huge leap. Searing Light
is a really powerful spell considering how low level it is. It deals 1D8/lvl
against undead, 1D6/lvl against construct, and up to 5D8 against all others. WITH
NO SAVE ALLOWED. The other extras are just icing on the cake. :) Only good when
you are level 9 or above, and especially good empowered/maximized.
TRAVEL - Freedom you can have via belt or rings. Haste you already have via boots
or weapons, slow isn't going to affect strong enemies since it's DC is low. Web
and Entagle, you must be joking, right? Stay away from this domain. However, if
you are playing on servers where haste is rare or non existant on items, it is
worth it to pick this. Haste is one of the uber abilities.
TRICKERY - One of the better domains, the main reason to take it is due to improve
invisibility. This spell is godly against enemies who can't dispel it. Gives 50%
concealment, at 1 turn per lvl, maximum of 20 turns. That's a very long time. 50%
conceal is a life saver, all the time, everytime. Take this domain if you truly
want to be safe. As if you aren't already safe enough behind your 40+ AC &
WAR - Would be good, but the special ability lasts a very short amount of time,
and can only be used once per day. Cat's grace is negligible since a simple potion
can do the same. Aura of Vitality is similar to a barbarian's rage, but it requires
7th level spell, that's one less Destruction for a few rounds of increase ability
points. Me, i say stay away.
WATER - Icestorm is a good spell, but MAGIC has it along with a few better spells,
poison is pathetic. Such a low DC anything worth it's pixel will resist it. Turn
3. CLERIC SPELLS
I shall give a brief summary on each spells purpose, usage and special details.
A major factor to consider: if the spells allow a saving throw to negate it's
effects, then that said spell will be rather useless as you face tougher foes
with better saves. Hence, the best spells are ones that do not allow saves.
Use spells in combination, spells that deal damage over time requires you to
disable your enemy previously somehow, that way, they can just stand there,
and take it all. Back up spells are good, make sure to have one or two that
can be a life saver.. spells such as invisibility, or stoneskin will make a
get away possible even in the direst of situations.
Cure Minor Wounds - heals 4 hp, 6 with domain Healing, good for low lvls.
Light - too dark? turn up the gamma. it also serves to counter darkness.
Resistance - great spell from lvl 1 to 20, boost saves, which is ALWAYS GOOD.
Virtue - 1 extra hp, forget it.
b) 1st Level
Bless - always good, more so as your level grows since it lasts longer.
Cure Light Wounds - hey, its healing, your choice.
Doom - great against melee types, since its a wis save.
Protection From Alignment - great multipurpose spell, always cast it on yourself.
Remove Fear - not entirely needed, your high wis saves should prevent fear.
Sanctuary - instead of wasting a slot for this.. just.. run. :)
Scare - not that great, as anything it actually affects isnt going harm you.
Summon I - great for a meatshield early on, a trap disabler later.
c) 2nd Level
Aid - extra hp, but most important, +1 attack bonus, great spell, always.
Bull's Strength - good for melee variants, or when you need to lug 260 pounds.
Cure Moderate Wounds - as always, use as directed/needed.
Darkness - makes you able to activate one enemy at a time, good for escape.
Eagle's Splendor - more char, for.. persuading? good for an ally sorceror.
Endurance - great for buffing before a battle
Find Traps - good if you know there will be plenty o traps ahead
Fox's Cunning - helps to boost modifier for spellcraft, gains +resistances.
Hold Person - great versus melee types, their low wis saves is their weakness.
Lesser Dispel - the dispel series basically gives you 50% chance vs same lvl chars.
Lesser Restoration - use as situation demands.
Negative Energy Ray - weak, since it allows a wisdom save to 1/2 damage.
Owl's Wisdom - good to boost the DC of your spells.
Remove Paralysis - use as situation demands.
Resist Elements - good when enemies use elemental attacks, obviously.
Silence - not good, since you need it most on mages, yet it is a WIS SAVE.
Sound Burst - decent against a group of melee, very good if your WIS is high.
Summon II - good meatshield.
d) 3rd Level
Animate Undead - great spell, its power increase as you grow
Bestow Curse - will save negates, tho hold person serves better.
Blindness/Deafness - fortitude save negates, of some use against spell casters
Clarity - use as situation demands
Contagion - fort save, so it will work on spell casters mostly.
Cure Serious Wounds - as with all heal spells, it depends on your situation
Dispel Magic - better dispel, good til lvl 10
Invisibility Purge - use as situation demands
Magic Circle Against Alignment - got a party? use this instead.
Negative Energy Protection - great spell, many devastating attacks are negative
Prayer - excellent spell, no save allowed means it works wonders.
Protection from Elements - use as required
Remove Blindness/Deafness - use as required
Remove Curses - good for places where your enemies use curses a lot, obviously.
Remove Disease - use as required, especially handy against undead
Searing Light - great spell, very good when you hit 9th lvl. empower or max it.
Summon III - fodder.
e) 4th Level
Cure Critical Wounds - handy, especially if healing is expensive where you play.
Death Ward - death spells allow fortitude save, your fort is high, so no worries
Dismissal - enemies like to summon? this will ruin their day.
Divine Power - makes you a tough melee fighter, duration is quite short though.
Flame Strike - decent, but the saving throw allowed makes it weak at higher lvls.
Freedom of Movement - hold spells you can save against easily, not needed.
Neutralize Poison - fighting spiders? bring this along.
Poison - weak since its a fort save, you need this against melee, but they save easy
Restoration - use as required, great against vampire and the likes
Summon IV - these things are useful, since they poison things they hit
f) 5th Level
Healing Circle - 1D8 + 1/lvl, bah to that! forget it.
Raise Dead - this is what makes clerics special, so use it
Slay Living - fort save, guess what? works wonders on low fort types.. ie mages.
Spell Resistance - basically gives you approx 50% immunity vs same lvl enemies
Summon V - dire tigers are no joke, they hit hard, and often.
Summon Shadow - weak compared to dire tigers
True Seeing - very useful in certain situations, it bypasses illusion spells.
g) 6th Level
Blade Barrier - godly. maximize will hit for 120 NO SAVE ALLOWED.
Create Undead - excellent, undead are immune to a lot of things.
Greater Dispelling - again, use as required
Harm - godly. imagine taking 449 hp away from a 450 hp dragon.
Heal - divine intervention. heals to maximum instantly, always needed.
Summon VI - dire bears are powerful, and make excellent warriors.
h) 7th Level
Greater Restoration - fully heals and removes negative effects!
Destruction - kill on fail save, 10D6 on save, excellent spell.
Regeneration - 60HP in 10 rounds? bah to that! worthless.
Resurrection - simply divine, a must have.
Summon VII - elementals are weak compared to dire bears
Word of Faith - doesnt always work, i dont know why
i) 8th Level
Aura Versus Alignment - great buff spell for the group
Create Greater Undead - undead, always a good summon!
Fire Storm - good for a mass of enemies, tho blade barrier is superior.
Mass Heal - uber. the whole party fully healed from the brink of death!
Summon VIII - elementals, bah! give me a dire bear anyday
Sunbeam - searing light is superior in all ways, and its lvl 3.
j) 9th Level
Energy Drain - hit mages, make them lose their 9th spells.. bwahaha!
Gate - balors are a great pet, make sure they dont attack you though
Implosion - supreme. a group of low fortitude enemies will drop fast
Storm of Vengeance - great if you can keep them still.. *hint, hint*
Summon IX - compared to a balor, why would you want it?
4. VARIANT FOCUS
Please note that this applies to the default NWN campaign, and servers which use
similar ruleset. If you are playing on PW servers, or ones that have hack paks,
and their own ruleset, re-think the strategy, although most will still apply.
Equipment suggestions are the optimal ones, ofcourse, when low level, you should
replace them with a lower variant types, say ring of resistance +1 instead of +3.
Here you have several choices, from the classic blunt weapon + shield, to wielding
a mighty greatsword.
*(23/7/03)* DIVINE POWER: This spell is a must for any melee variant cleric. It
does NOT work the way the spell describes. It doesn't just increase the cleric's
attack bonus to a fighter, but gives them extra attacks per round as well!
A 8th level cleric casting it will receive 1 EXTRA attack per round, a lvl 11+
will get 2 EXTRA! The extra attacks do not show up on your character sheet, but
it is there, after your main swings, you will do the extra swings.
If your level 11 character has an attack bonus of 16/11, it will swing 16, 11, then
16, and 16 again! The extra attacks use your *HIGHEST* bonus! This is the reason
why this spell is so overpowering, since your attacks are so accurate. A fighter
may get four attacks a round, but they fall off, from 20/15/10/5, and get less
and less accurate as the attacks continue.
A level 15 cleric with a high strength will get an attack bonus of say, 22/17/12,
he/she will swing 22, 17, 12, 22, 22.. for a total of FIVE attacks per round,
with three very accurate swings @ 22 attack bonus!
Another thing to note with this spell, the bonuses from spells such as bless, aid,
or prayer will NOT apply to the attack bonus, only your level and strength along
with weapon enchantments/feat focus will stack. A level 15 cleric with 22 strength
and a +1 weapon will have, when divine power is active, 22/17/12/22/22 no matter
The attack bonuses ALSO applies to range weapons. This might be changed in the
next patch (current one is 1.29), so keep a look out.
1. TANK: heavy armored, built for survival in the front lines.
Ability Score: str 16, dex 12, con 14, wis 14, int 10, cha 10. By lvl 20, wis 19
so you can cast all spell levels. If you are using a race that has bonus/penalties,
then modify according to your liking. Try not to have any stat below 10 besides
charisma :), and make sure Wisdom will be 19 or 20 at max level.
Domain: Strength and Animal/Trickery. Strength is a neccesity (divine strength lvl 3
and stoneskin), take Animal if you like a nice summon helper, or Trickery if you
like to be really safe during melee thanks to 50% concealment. :)
Feats: Take skill focus (discipline) as needed. If you are human, take combat
casting or toughness at level 1.
Lvl 01 - knockdown
Lvl 03 - exotic weapon
Lvl 06 - weapon focus (katana/bastard)
Lvl 09 - extend spell
Lvl 12 - improved critical
Lvl 15 - power attack
Lvl 18 - spell penetration
You will need combat casting since you are up the front lines generally, and you
do not want to be interupted while trying to cast a protection/healing/harm or
area effect damage spell.
Weapon: Stick with a morningstar or longsword (elves) until you can use a katana
or bastard sword.
Equipment: Tower Shield, Amulet of Natural Armor, Ring of Resistance, Ring of
Power, Cloak of Fortitude, Boots of Speed, Greater (Swordman/Brawler/Archer) Belt
if you can afford all and switch against different enemies, if not, go with
Swordman belt, since most enemies deal slashing damage. Gauntlet of Ogre Power.
Summary: High AC, High HP (with toughness, will get 220 hp at lvl 20), Good attack
bonuses and damage (strength). All in all, a very strong front line fighter that
is difficult to hit with the ability to deal area effect damage via spells
2. GREATSWORD MANIAC: heavy armored, built for damage dealing and survival.
Ability Score: str 16, dex 12, con 12, wis 14, int 14, cha 8.
Domain: Trickery, Magic. You will be wielding a greatsword, so no shield, hence,
less AC, you want to be able to survive, so Trickery is important thanks to
improve invisibility's 50% concealment. Basically you will rarely get hit. Magic
for 4th spell stoneskin, for the times you do get hit, and for 5th lvl Icestorm,
nice way to soften things up before melee.
Feats - martial profiency, knockdown, extend spell, empowered spell, improve
knockdown (requires high intelligence), improve critical, spell penetration.
Humans can grab knockdown at level 1 instead, and weapon focus at level 3.
Weapon: The biggest and baddest greatsword or axe you can find. For singleplayer,
the quest sword with additional flame damage is nice.
Equipment: Same as TANK except no shield. Belt of Giant Strength & Gauntlet of
Ogre Power to bring str to 23. Then cast empowered bull strength on yourself!
It can add 7 strength, bringing your max to 30!!
Summary: 4 attacks per round if hasted. Very hard to hit thanks to improve
invisibility, and can absorb blows thanks to stoneskin. If needed, cast a
empowered area effect (icestorm, flamestrike etc) to help. Make sure to cast Bull's
Strength on yourself after a rest, really adds up the damage you can inflict.
With extended divine power in effect, this variant will tear through enemies so
fast it isn't funny. Against tough foes, improve knockdown will work wonders,
especially against mages or other classes with low discipline.
RANGE: bow and arrow, or sling and shield. damage from afar, rely on
summons/henchman to take care of frontlines. This variant will be based on
damaging spell types. You can make another variant, which relies on summons
to do damage, and you use your spells to disable enemies. It works fine
Note: If you play elven, you can use the longbows without needing martial weapon
Ability Score: str 12, dex 16, con 12, wis 15, int 10, cha 10. By lvl 20, have
wisdom 20. Elves should try to have 18 dex, lowering charisma if need be.
Domain: Air, Animal. Animal is nice for this variant, since you need a decent
front line to keep enemies busy while you cast spells or shoot arrows/bullets. Air
for call lightning, which will be your staple diet for all through the game, and
turning elementals can help, though not much.
Feats (elven) - point black shot, rapid shot, extend spell, empowered spell,
improve critical (longbow), spell focus evocation, maximize spell.
If you are not elvish, you need to grab martial weapon proficiency for longbows.
Cast extended divine power as a 5th level spell, and your archery skills will sky
Weapon: Longbow. Crossbows are slow and you'll only ever get 2 attacks per round
with it if you are hasted, whereas bows & slings work on the normal cleric attacks
per round. Though heavy crossbows ARE superior until you reach level 8 when you
obtain your 2nd attack per round, though if you take rapid shot, longbows are
better from when you get it.
Equipment: Stick with leather, your high dex can provide the protection required.
Though going full plate works fine, generally, i like to stick with hide armors
for the "right" look. :) Those who go with slings can equipt a nice Tower Shield
as well! Belt of Agility, Cloak of Fortitude, Ring of Power, Boots of Haste,
Tomi's Ring that gives +dex or a Ring of Resistance, Gauntlets of Dexterity.
Summary: With 4 attacks per rounded hasted, backed up by a strong frontline
summon, and a vast array of area damage spells, this variant performs very well
with minimal risk. Perfect variant for playing online in persistant servers
or as a solo adventurer or with a party hunting group. Even better in the single
player campaign due to the help of a henchman as well as a summon creature.
PURE SPELL CASTER: clerics in my opinion, are the strongest spell caster class in
NWN. It may differ in PnP, but for NWN, they are in a class of their own. The
main reason why is they get a lot of spells with no save allowed.
Ability Score: str 10, dex 12, con 12, wis 18 , int 10, cha 10. WIS 23 @ lvl 20,
more if boost via amulet/spell.
Domain: Air, Magic. Magic gives very nice bonuses, namely the extra spell Ice Storm
at spell lvl 5, and Acid Arrow at lvl 2, which now has a very effective offensive
spell. Air is for the call lightning. Chain Lightning is inferior to Blade Barrier,
also a lvl 6th spell for this build. With this, you have attack spells from lvl 2
Feats - toughness, spell focus (evocation), empowered spell, maximize spell,
spell penetration. optional: great fortitude, lightning reflex.
There's not many feats you need as a pure spell caster, so the last two choices
can be anything you like.
Weapon: You won't need to melee for most of the time, but you can if you wish
since your AC will be very high, hence, you can cast spells in a crowd without
worry. I suggest a weapon that gives you haste if you can equip one.
Equipment: Heavy Armor, Tower Shield, pretty much same as a fighter type. Take
full advantage of the Cleric's ability to be a real tank and cast spells without
worry of failure. If your weapon has haste, you can wear boots to boost
constitution or give you immunity to knockdown, etc, otherwise use Boots of Speed.
Amulet should be used to futher boost wisdom. As always, try to get the highest
AC so you can cast without worry of being hit, and try to raise your saving throws,
especially reflex types to avoid damaging spells.
Summary: Can cast splenty of spells thanks to high wisdom, decent HP, high AC, and
plenty of offensive spells to select from. Use blade barriers in a way that melee
enemies rush over it to get to you, and if you really want to abuse them, move back
and forth and let them follow you. With your vast array of acid arrow, searing light,
call lightning, destruction, and storm of vengence, you can pretty much tear everything
apart with impunity.
5. MULTIPLAYER CLERICS
TEAM ORIENTATED: Your strength lies within friends and allies. Serve them well,
they shall serve you well.
Build her pretty much like a pure spell caster, but with a "healing" mindset. Wear
heavy armors to get that AC up as high as possible, so that you can run into crowds
to heal and resurrect fallen comrades. Boost the party via spells like Bull's
Strength, Endurance, Bless, Aid, Protection from Evil etc. Summon animals to aid
in the fight. Focus skills in healing, and make good use of medikits. If all else
fails, your high AC means you can hold the front lines to allow the team to form
new tactics, or finish off enemies from a safe distance.
If you play on servers where resting is restricted, take the domain Healing.
SOLO ADVENTURER: Independant, and the ability to survive on your own.
Make good use of summon creature, since they will be your only companion during
your long trek into the wilderness. Take skills in healing to keep you fit
and healthy, and conserv spell slots for offensive spells since you have to take
everything down by yourself. Can build him similar to a ranger for the added
appeal. :) Myself, i always use this build for online rpgs eversince ultima
online. Range weapons, summons, offensive spells, and healing. Nice and effective.
PVP or DUELIST: The pace at which you can crush your foes is frightening. No one,
and i mean no one is safe against you (unless they cheat with custom items giving
them immunity to EVERYTHING - which is why i suggest you find good server vault
pvp servers ^^).
I will expand on this a bit more detailed than the two above instances, since this
needs more planning to be successful.
Note: This is designed with the default NWN ruleset and item set in mind, if the
server you play on is totally different or you cannot obtain especially the short
sword "The Lucky One", i suggest you experiment with dual classing, 19 Cleric &
1 Monk to gain the feat Evasion.
Race: Preferably Dwarven (+2 saves against spells, more CON)
Ability: str 10, dex 12, con 20, wis 15, in 8, cha 6. WIS 20 @ lvl 20.
Domain: Trickery & Sun.
Feats: martial weapon, empowered spell, maximize spell, lightning reflex, greater
fortitude, toughness/iron will, spell penetration.
Weapon: The Lucky One (shortsword, grants feat improve evasion)
Equipment: Ring of Power, Boots of Speed, best Full Plate available, Tower Shield
+5 (requires lawful alignment), Amulet of Natural Armor +5, Cloak of Fortitude +3,
Ring of Resistance +3, Greater Swordsman's Belt or Brawler, depending on enemies
you face, you can switch belts to suit situation. Brawler to block icestorm's
bludgeoning or monk fists, Swordman to block fighter/barbarian blades. Any helm
you like, don't worry about stunning fist since your save will be high enough to
avoid it easily. Though a helm which adds to saving throw is always great.
With this setup, you have 43 AC, and saving throws of +6 via items & +2 via feats,
totalling +8 to saves. Your base saves will be Fortitude: 12, Reflex: 6, Will: 12.
Add in items => Fort: 20, Refl: 14, Will: 20. Then add in bonus via stats, you can
easily get 25 in fort and will, and around 17 in reflex if you drink cat's grace
potion. Finally, if you took my advice and took Spellcraft, you gain +5 to ALL
saves, and being a dwarf, that's another +2. So your Fort & Will saves are 32,
reflex 24. It's the fort & will saves that matter most since it protects you
agaisnt a lot of nasty spells. 24 in reflex can avoid most reflex spells if you
roll 4 or more, and thanks to The Lucky One, if you save, you receive ZERO damage,
not half. Even if you don't save, you automatically receive half.
What this means is that almost the entire selection of sorcery spells to hurt you
will be negated.. the only ones that can hurt you will be magic missile, negative
energy ray and horrid wilting. Horrid cannot be maximized or empowered, so it does
20D8, you will save against it easily, so it ends up doing 10D8, on average, that
is 40 damage. NER is a wis save spell, easily done for you, it ends up doing 2.5D6.
The fact that only few spells can hurt you and the 6th level spell Heal, it can
really put the hurt against wizards & sorcerors, more likely they run out of spells
before you die. :)
If you really want to annoy the nuts out of wizards/sorc, then just cast spell
resistance, let them disjunction it, then cast it again, or do the same with
improved invisibility. :) If they have spell level absorbtion, just hit them on
the head in melee. Wait til it runs out, either way, they cannot kill you before
they run out of spells.. then you can just chase them around all over the place.
Melee classes won't have a chance against you, thanks to 43AC, and 50% concealment.
With 20 in constitution, and the feat toughness, you end up with 280 hp at level
20. More if you drink endurance potion or cast the spell.
Your main attacking spells are: Searing Light @ lvl 2, Searing Light @ lvl 3,
Empowered Searing Light @ lvl 4, Maximized Searing Light OR Slay Living @ lvl 5,
Harm @ lvl 6, Blade Barrier @ lvl 6, Destruction @ lvl 7, Empowered Blade Barrier @
lvl 8, Maximize Blade Barrier @ lvl 9.
Defensive Spells: Improved Invisibility, Heal, Spell Resistance, use as needed or
required. Remember, Heal @ lvl 6 will simply make you a god in PvP.
Destruction is a very powerful spell, guaranteed 10D6 even if enemies save, if
they don't save, they instantly die. Blade Barrier is a real killer, up to 20D6 NO
SAVE (use to be no save, but 1.29 put in partial save!). Won't work on monks if
they are level 20 (blade barrier deals normal physical damage, monks are basically
immune to normal physical @ lvl 20), but works on everyone else unless they use
custom items to give them immunity to the spell school, or mages with spell level
absorbtion on (but they wont last long and will wear down fast). Blade barriers
don't just summon a wall, it tracks enemies just like a flame arrow would, it
lands, hits, and deals damage and blades pop up where it hits and deals more
damage if your enemy is still on top of it. It's incredibly overpowering since
it does so much damage.
Harm is also another key spell, especially agaisnt melee fighters. It is very easy
to connect since a "touch" attack bypasses most of the target's AC rating. If they
have negative energy protection, then forget it though, but if they don't, they
will learn soon enough to have it next time. This is an evil, evil, but excellent
spell. One of the reasons people run away from clerics is due to this, they gotta
get out of melee range. :)
There are no legal items within the game that negates Divine damage, so searing
light will always be a killer, and due to taking Sun, you have plenty of it to
Personally, i would hate to face against someone with 43 AC, 50% concealment,
hasted, and the ability to dish out so much damage that doesn't allow me to save
against.. not to mention the ability heal and summon balors, then proceeding to
cast improve invisiblity & stoneskin on said balor, while filling the screen with
blade barriers.. ouch. Nuf said, clerics as they are now are in a class of their
own. Unless bioware "nerfs" them via future patches, they remain to be the most
powerful PvP class.
6. MISCELLANEOUS TACTICS
Do you know of a nice trick that's useful as a cleric? If so, don't hesitate to
give me an email. I'll include it in future versions of this guide if it's
Dual Classing opens up a lot of opportunities, but i believe for most purpose,
it is better to stay a cleric all the way to level 20, since the extra high
level spells offset most benefit you would have from dual classing.
The only one i can think of that is really good is a 19 Cleric/1 Monk for evasion.
You may want to take a few levels of Fighter to gain feats, and Weapon Spec, for
+2 damage, but i say in a typical fight at higher levels, you have plenty of
offensive spells to deal damage much faster than +2 would. Also your bull's str
will give +2 or so. Barbarian's rage lasts way too short, compared to your own
Another good dual class is 19 Cleric/1 Rogue - timestop, greater stoneskin,
premonition, and mork disjunction scrolls available via Use Magic Device.
All in all, clerics are like monks, they are good to stay single class.
7. PERSISTANT WORLD RELATED
There are many decent PW Servers nowadays, it should not be difficult to find one.
I mainly play on Exaria (as of Feb 2003), for details go to www.nwnmodules.com,
however, these advice apply to other servers as well, im just pointing out the way
you should think and plan out your cleric to suit the situation.
I'll just list a few changes to the paths a cleric can take within Exaria.
Firstly, there are plenty of clerics, this is due to the fact they are so useful
and a very needed party of adventuring.
Key things: Exaria is a tough place, its is difficult from the get go, and wont
really get much easier as time go on. Magical items are rare, and good ones are
non existant. The motto of the admins are: "if it's easy, then it's not good".
Resting is restricted, and requires food (which costs $$) along with a campfire
you need to build (and you can only build one every now and then).
Gold is hard to obtain, since enemies drop very few of it, and items costs a lot.
From this, you can understand why clerics are popular. Healing potions are costly,
and without the ability to rest anywhere, anytime, all classes need healing.
Magic items being rare, hence, spells that boost AC, Attack Bonus and Saving Throws
are a necessity. Stoneskin is vital to surviving at the frontlines, since you will
no longer obtain obscenely high AC. Improve Invisibility will boost survival rate
by leaps and bounds, for melee or spell casting clerics alike.
The three most important domain to take for exaria currently (as of Feb 2003) i
believe are: Trickery, Magic, and Healing.
Trickery gives invisibility @ lvl 2, it's a last resort get away spell when you are
about to die or someone in your team is weak. Improve Invis will always be great
anywhere. Magic for mage armor @ lvl 1, which most of the time, boost AC by 4, which
is huge early and later on. Also for stoneskin, which is an uber spell for melee
clerics, and ice storm, a very nice attack spell.. especially nicer in Exaria,
since it will work VERY good versus others due to the fact there are no uber absorb
items. Healing, well, its always important, keeps you alive, and makes friends
happy and healthy. Heal @ lvl 5 is excellent too, since you can save lvl 6 for
other nice spells.
If you take the domain Animal, it would be wise to take the feat Extend Spells,
since summons in Exaria lasts quite short, being at 2 Turn + 1 Round/Lvl.
Summon undead are superior to most creature summons, since undead gain good
damage reduction. Though a stoneskin and improved invisibliy extended dire tiger
will wreck havok just as well if not better.
Your buff spells will be appreciated, since most low - medium level people do not
stock up on bull strength, endurance, etc potions since they cost a lot of $, take
the empower feat to casts these empowered, it helps a lot.
If you are playing in a world where they use the default NWN rules, by all means,
follow my variant guide to the point, but they are not set in stone, adjust them
to your own liking. Just remember, the domains Trickery & Magic are the best of
the lot, and will be useful for any variant.
I've not had many PvP experience on Exaria, but i gather II and SS will still
perform greatly, especially against melee. There aren't many +save items, so
saving against wizard and sorceror spells will be difficult, though you still
get around 70%-80% to save agaisnt them if you build your cleric right.
Would i be wrong to say your views of a typical cleric have changed somewhat after
reading this guide? Let's hope less people would think of a cleric as simply a
walking healing potion. :) Since they are indeed very powerful, and very versatile,
if not, the most versatile class. Above all, make sure you have fun playing as one! :)