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Decided to try playing a little bit of single player Quake 2 again for some mindless FPS fun. It's not my favorite, but it's one of the few big ones of the Win9x era that I haven't yet completed.

Took a bit to get started because I decided to use a source port, which in turn required ripping (foobar2000) + converting (fre:ac) CD audio tracks to OGG.

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Apparently a lot of people do absolutely everything they can before starting chapter 3, so I might go that route as well. I certainly played BG1 this way - exploring everything that wasn't gated off before doing whatever would trigger the next chapter. But chapter 2 is big!

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A boy appeared and engaged Minsc in a long conversation about being sent to the city to ask for help saving his village from some kind of zombie invasion.

It seems that BG2 forgoes open-world exploration in favor of having you learn of world locations via quests. Bummer.

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Even more for later: A dwarven smith named Cromwell who rummages through your inventory looking for special items that can be forged into powerful gear. So far I have only a jewel for a sword pommel, which isn't enough to work with. I'll have to check in as I find stuff.

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Another one for later: Found the skull of a lich in a tomb under a house, who wants me to help rebuild its body. Sounds like everyone rebuilds and then kills it for the XP/loot, but apparently only +5 weapons can harm it - and in particular a Mace of Disruption.

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Exploring the Docks, I encountered a slaver that Jaheira and her fellow Harpers took down, and he's still holding a grudge. He has some lackeys hit Jaheira with a curse that progressively drains her stats, setting up a timed quest. No thanks - will redo this scene later!

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Don't know if it's supposed to be a cultural difference in Amn, or just a different game design mindset, but the mechanic of NPCs catching you stealing and calling for guards seems toned way back. I'm openly looting a guard barracks right now without any consequences lol

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As main tank, Jaheira almost never uses ranged.

Minsc is split ranged/melee as backup tank.

Everyone else heavily favors ranged, only switching to melee when fighting enemies that resist ranged or non-magical weapons, or to avoid 4 AC penalty when enemies swarm into melee

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Current proficiency *usage*:
Isakur: Longbow, Longsword
Minsc: Longbow, 2H Sword, Axe
Jaheira: Sling, Quarterstaff (was Sling/Scimitar + Shield)
Yoshimo: Short Bow, Katana
Nalia: Short Bow, Short Sword
Aerie: Sling/Mace + Shield

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My party's current weapon proficiencies. As you can see, a number of proficiencies are held by nobody, while several are overloaded (quarterstaff in particular!). Doesn't make sense for my main char to spec into the neglected ones because I can't backstab with any of them.

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Connected a man who'd lost his son with a girl who'd lost her parents, then called it good at the Graveyard and unloaded loot at Adventurers' Mart.

Going to explore the Docks and then either move on to Chapter 3, or maybe explore Bridge District and/or check up on my keep.

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Funny scene in the Graveyard district: A dead man is so upset about his nephew cheaping out on his funeral that he comes back as a zombie and attacks. I have to decide whether to intervene, which I do if only because it results in more XP than just letting the nephew die.

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Still no +1 scimitar, club, or one-handed staff for Jaheira, but I did find her an interesting "Staff of Curing": a two-handed quarterstaff +1 that also provides +2 AC (more than the +1 AC from a large shield, at the cost of 3 missile protection). Also 10 special heals.

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Resting also means more Identify spells. First up is a Longsword +2 that can also case Silence 15' Radius 3x per day; not as good as Daystar. Second is weird stone that goes on your head and grants +10% HP and +1 THAC0; good for Nalia, as thieves can't wear most helms.

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While exploring a dungeon in the graveyard, I got level drained by a nameless vampire. Party had to rest to get a restoration spell to fix it, which resulted in menacing dreams of Irenicus. Jaheira also experienced restless sleep due to something related to her tragedy.

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Tentative plan is to explore Graveyard and Docks districts, and complete most of the quests I got early in chapter 2. I will then pay the now 15000 gp price to the Shadow Thieves to secure their help with finding Imoen/Irenicus, which I think will launch chapter 3.

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Finished exploring the Slums around nightfall. Went to Graveyard district and met with Bodhi, who offered help w/Imoen for 15K GP. Turned her down to avoid turning thieves hostile, plus everyone but Yoshimo was creeped out. She also may allied w/Irenicus and/or a vampire.

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Main character (Fighter/Thief) got a weapon proficiency pip choice. I should probably stick to thief weapons because he can only backstab with those, so I went with a second pip in quarterstaff

Will realistically stick w/Daystar unless I give someone else Longswords though

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The trap searching mechanic in the Infinity Engine games is annoyingly random and slow. You have to enable a passive skill that gets disabled by any non-movement action, and then it makes periodic, hidden rolls against traps in a hidden radius to decide whether they appear.

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According to the wiki, it's just a Two-Handed Sword +3, with no other special attributes - except for apparently being very chatty.

Minsc is my only 2H wielder. It's probably an upgrade to Sword of Chaos +2, as 1 HP stolen per hit isn't much in a high-level campaign.

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Entering the sewers on the trail of more slavers, I found a puzzle: 4 items are needed to free a magic sword.

I didn't understand you could "use" the pipes to get clues, so I had to check a wiki to get the blood.

It's a talking 2H sword with a "converse" button lol

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