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About TheKian

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  1. Technically, the game considers all your party members to be creations - Alwan and Greta count toward the creation type cap, for example. All creatures added to your party take no essence to upgrade (at least in G3/4; I've never bothered with the ones in Geneforge 2); this includes creations you recruit, like Greenfang in the first chapter of G4, or Mehken in G5's first chapter. If you have one for long enough, actually, you should be able to max out its stat investments (it gets 2 skill points on each level up), which is probably the only reason to ever take along creatures. Of course, skill point investment usually isn't worth it in normal creations, which is the main point of this all.
  2. They are the same item. Synergy was probably thinking of Geneforge 5 when he wrote that. Also... please just don't post in threads that have been dead for nine years. Just PM somebody.
  3. A couple things to consider. In the earlier games (Geneforge 1 & 2, and possibly 3) there is a "soft cap" on bonuses you gain from stat increases. After 10, you start getting diminishing returns. After level 20 in a stat, the bonuses you gain from upgrading it are almost useless. It's usually a good idea to select a few stats to boost a great deal (for example, a Shaping class may want to buff intelligence, magic Shaping, and mechanics up to high levels, while a melee class will find it worth his while to buff up parry and quick action). Level 20 in a skill is usually a good ending point for the game. I say magic Shaping in particular because it generally has the best creations (Vlish... just... yeah...). At the top of the "Geneforge Series" forum board, there are "strategy central" posts for each Geneforge game. I believe that all of them include links to posts on optimizing builds, which will help you decide in which skills to invest. However, here's a breakdown of the stats. Attributes: Strength: A very useful stat for melee classes, as it greatly increases your hitting power and your chance to hit. However, you shouldn't invest into it for carrying capacity. In general, you'll find enough strength items (like the talisman of might) that if you are a class who suffers from low strength, you'll be able to shore it up without point investment. Dexterity: The dump stat for everyone. It increases your dodge chance, initiative, and skill with missile weapons, but... A. Basically everyone who plays unmodded Geneforge doesn't use missile weapons enough that it'd matter, and it's more expensive than the actual skill, B. Other, cheaper skills give you initiative, and C. In the later games especially, the dodge chance really doesn't help. Intelligence: A very important skill. All classes, pretty much, will want to invest a couple points into this, at the very least. The essence it provides is necessary for both Shaping classes and magic heavy classes (who often depend on mental magic) and lets warrior classes shore up their combat with some meat shields or fire support. Endurance: Overall, less important than most. If you have low endurance, you'll probably die a lot, but unless you tend to do a lot of solo combat (as a warrior or agent class, for example), you won't need to invest much. Combat skills: Parry is useful for all classes if you can obtain it from, say, a trainer. Same with quick action. Melee weapons is probably the only skill that warrior classes should invest in here, since melee weapons tend to eclipse ranged weapons except in certain minmaxed torment builds. Shaping skills: Battle Shaping is consistently bad in most games. Even with rotghroths, some of the most solid creations in the series, it performs poorly next to its neighbors. Its one redeeming feature is war tralls, which are solid ranged combatants. I would argue, though, that they are only worth it in Geneforge 5, where you can get one very early on in the game. Magic Shaping tends to sweep the floor, especially in Geneforge 1-3. You ask why? Vlish. As our dear Slarty put it, Vlish would, if story reflected gameplay, overrun the Ashen Isles. In Geneforge 4, wingbolts are introduced, which are exceptionally powerful creations that also have a melee attack which parallels that of Vlish. Fire creations are also a solid choice, but fire Shaping is more expensive to invest in, and it doesn't have very good second or fourth tier creations; drakons also, unfortunately, tend to be far too late-game to be of much use. Summary: Magic Shaping is usually your best choice here. Miscellaneous Skills: Leadership: Useful in special encounters, and in persuading trainers in opposing factions to help you (reputation checks add or subtract your leadership from reputation for Shapers and rebels, respectively). A useful example is with Mayor Kirk in Geneforge 4; a small amount of leadership nets you a free point in luck. Leadership encounters also almost always give you XP in later games, making it useful for maximizing your level. You should never need more than 12 leadership. Mechanics: Very useful after Geneforge 1. Being able to get XP from disarming huge fields of mines and the likes is extremely useful. Again, more than 12 should never be needed, unless you REALLY REALLY need to save living tools or something. Luck: Useful in a number of ways. Increases several resistances, initiative, dodge chance, and influences item drop luck. It also helps you out in special encounters. Since you can typically get a few points (you can purchase your way to level 30 in luck in Geneforge 1 especially) for free, investing just a couple levels in it will help you out a decent amount later in the game, but it's not something to heavily invest in. In special encounters, I don't believe anything needs more than 4, although the ones I can remember only need level 2.
  4. If you want to check on ending needs, look at Matt P's walkthrough. If you aren't careful, it'll spoil particular quests, but it doesn't spoil any endings.
  5. Gazak-Uss is retroactively plot-important, as I found it was confirmed as becoming Gazaki-Uss by, I believe, Ghaldring himself (or some other important rebel).
  6. Outsiders usually DO use normal tools. Living tools are essentially Swiss army knives on steroids. Using them probably does need a great deal of training. Vendors that sell living tools probably typically sell them to experienced adventurers and Shapers.
  7. It is covered nowhere in the Geneforge games how living tools specifically work in the 'fluff'. I suspect, however, that they work by moving their tentacles in response to pressure on their 'stems'. Being fragile, this would, along with waking one, likely result in its death (something actually from the game dialogue). It IS known, however, that they can be awake and survive, and that they are mostly animal (they are confirmed to be part plant, though). Living tools can breed, and in one instance a living tool is noted as trying to crawl away after being put down when it was being worked on (hence, its death is more a result of the stress of use than anything else).
  8. I must wonder whether your gf5floorster.txt might be different than other versions. Perhaps you could ask alhoon to send you all of his scripts, to make sure that nothing in the scripts folder is the problem.
  9. You get 'strange looks' at 6 canisters, but you don't get any ending modifications from having used them. As long as you don't use any more, you're fine; you suffer no canister addict symptoms. Conduit shards are faction quest objects. I believe that the Barzites, Takers, and Awakened all want one if you join them. There are two in the game, one in the pit of the bound (said Barzite demon stupidity) and the one in Phariton's place.
  10. You ask who is to judge what is an oversight and what is a retcon? Verily, I say unto you... hisnamejeff Also, consider this. The Shapers would likely have decided to just shut down -most- outsider training in magic as a result of the nonsense that happened in the Drypeak mountains, after someonewhowasn'tLitalia destroyed everything. Chances are, the guy with a spellbook had to obtain it FROM the Shapers (since all trained mages are Shaper-ordained), and so had the permission of the Shapers to study it. Furthermore, it's not unrealistic to think that the town's servile keeper (an actually respectably important position) would be given training by a Shaper in basic healing magic, so long as healing magic isn't actual Shaping.
  11. From canon in-game sources, we can be fairly sure that healing magic doesn't actually count as Shaping. The specific example of which I am thinking is the servile keeper (a normal outsider) in Drypeak in Geneforge 2. For bringing back the serviles from the mines, she teaches you cure effects, and mentions specifically that she was taught it. Though Zakary is hardly a great example of a Shaper, he certainly wouldn't have given an ordinary servile keeper permission or training to use any sort of healing magic if it were Shaping.
  12. Medically speaking, although the Shapers could probably Shape new limbs, they would probably be genetically disparate from the person to whom they are supposed to be attached, leading to rejection of the limb by the immune system. Furthermore, human Shaping is explicitly illegal (Source: Um... somewhere in one of the games), so creating human limbs with Shaping would probably be as well. Also, if you'd like to learn about servant minds, then, to quote Slarty, "Per usual, Triumph said it better."
  13. See, the daze/terror attacks work well in Geneforge 4 because, even fairly late into the game, enemies aren't particularly strong. However, in Geneforge 5, enemies get tough super fast. That's why your slowing/cursing batons work much better in G5.
  14. Rotdhizons and rotghroths both do acid damage, but they do about the same amount of damage. I just tested a rotdhizon, rotghroth, and drakon against each other with the same testing basis as my previous post. The rotghroth did an average of about 150 damage. The rotdhizon did an average of about 160 damage. The drakon did an average of 120 damage. The Drakon, however, has a higher chance to hit twice, and fires searing orbs as a ranged attack. It also has a good deal more health than rotghroths in addition to its superior initiative. It's a solid creation. It doesn't do as much damage as the other creations, but its greater variability makes it fairly useful. It mostly depends on what you want: general abilities or powerful specific creations. Gazers are excellent, but they run out of magic pretty fast in large battles. Maybe 6-8 shots without regenerating back up to full energy? Also, @Queenforge, The bonuses from Shaping skill seem to have diminishing returns that are pretty severe (+16 creation levels for 30 Shaping skill). I THINK that it only starts after the 10 level soft cap, but I'm not sure. Also, keep in mind, Drakons have 8 quick action, but Gazers have none, and luck seems to make fairly little difference. Due to the higher base level of Drakons, you'd have to have a pretty great level differential (if you assume that quick action has the same effect as dexterity, that's 4 levels to overcome the dexterity differential, and then 16 more for the quick action differential - or a 20 level higher Gazer!) Edit: Rotghroth'd be fairly realistic, though. +8 level difference, assuming, again, that quick action has the same effect as dexterity. Also, investing points into dexterity makes the rotghroth more expensive than a Drakon after only 2 points invested.