The Let's Play Archive

Divinity II: The Dragon Knight Saga

by Stabbey_the_Clown

Part 13: Game Mechanics: Level 3 and Level 6 Skills

Game Mechanics: Level 3 and Level 6 Skills

Because you can select skills from any class as long as you meet the level requirement, I’ve decided to group descriptions of skills by the level you an first use them, instead of by class.

Also, I was able to finish the last two videos:

Jackson’s Farm
Folo and David

Divinity 2 – Level 3 Skills

Upon reaching Level 3, new skills are unlocked to use.

Warrior Skills

Jump Attack
– “Those who have this skill in their repertoire – all Dragon Slayers do – can jump and fall to the ground with a great cleave of their weapon. Not only does it increase the pounding your enemy takes, it has quite a chance of knocking him off his feet. After that it’s just a matter of having the good grace to make the kill quick and painless. Right?

Mana Cost: Unknown, but present.
Bonus Damage (fixed): 9 -> 1494
Knockdown Chance: 10% -> 80%

This skill lets you increase the damage you do to an enemy if you perform a jump attack. It adds a fixed amount, not a percentage, and adds a decent chance of knocking an enemy down. The downside is that there is a hidden (if minor) mana cost, and the problem that if you sink a lot of skill points into this, you’ll feel obligated to use the same damn attack every single time, which gets boring. I’m going to pass on this.

– “An instant kill is one of the greatest blows a warrior can learn to deliver, but the road to success is long. An enemy must be seriously wounded before such a blow can be struck when you are still inexperienced in the one-hit-one-kill method. But as you learn, it will take less duelling time for you to find a weak spot that will end the fight in the blink of an eye.

Mana Cost: 14 -> 63
Cooldown: 5 seconds
Kills Enemy below X% Health: 10% -> 52%

An interesting skill, but it takes 6 skill points to get this up to 25%, and 15 to get it up to 52%. Right now, it’s not worth it to spend skill points to save just one or two extra blows.

Ranger Skills

Ranger Strength
– “Some rangers spend as much time training their strength as they do their agility. The result is that every arrow they fire flies with greater speed and power, naturally inflicting even greater wounds.

Damage Bonus: +5% -> 61%

This passive skill is the equivalent of the melee weapon specialization skills. It increases the damage your bow does by a moderate amount, topping out at +61%. Explosive Arrow doesn’t use this skill, but Splitting Arrows does. I don't think Poison Arrow or Stun Arrows use this either.

Stun Arrow
– “Profiting from a temporary heightened concentration, you are able to shoot arrows with such precision and force that they stun any victim: leaving them immobile for a while. Scoring kills has never been easier.

Mana Cost: 14 -> 63
Cooldown: 20 -> 15 seconds
Duration: 4 -> 18 seconds

Not a great skill. It can take a single enemy out of the fight, but the duration is short, and until you get to skill to very high levels, the stun wears off before the cooldown does.

Mage Skills

Mana Efficiency
– “Performing a whirlwind attack or casting a fire wall costs mana, but you have trained your spirit and therefore don’t need to catch your mental breath as quickly as others might. A very practical ability indeed, for, as the saying goes, two whirlwinds are always better than one

Mana cost: 90% -> 25%

A passive skill which reduces the mana cost you pay per skill. Characters with high Intelligence who use this are unlikely to run out of mana at all. It might be worth considering for Rangers. I might think about using this to lower the cost of Thousand Strikes.

– “Imagine, if you will, two fierce undead warriors sporting claws and jagged swords with your name on them. Facing two such savage adversaries at the same time might just be more than you can handle. Luckily, you have the polymorph spell at your disposal, which will briefly transform those on its receiving end into harmless ladybirds. This is sure to make your life easier and theirs briefer.

Mana Cost: 30 -> 178
Cooldown: 18 -> 5 seconds
Duration: 10 -> 50 seconds
Number of Targets: 1 -> 4
Number of hits: 0 -> 4

Another return from Divine Divinity. Back then it was bugged and never wore off. Ever. This version doesn’t have that problem. There is no enemy-below-level-X requirement on this skill, which makes even one point useful at the end. More points lets you hit the enemies more times before it wears off. Some enemies can cast this on you, and when it wears off, you are stunned for a few seconds.

Priest Skills

– “Fear may paralyze you: block all functions, body and mind. But this is something different. This is fear that strikes at the very core of one’s being, catapults one into a sickening frenzy and leaves the victim with no other impulse but to flee. In other words: you cast the spell and your enemies do a runner.

Mana Cost: 23 -> 149
Cooldown: 60 seconds
Duration: 10 -> 22 seconds
Distance: 4 -> 12
Enemy Level: 9 -> 51

The enemy level requirement means you have to keep pumping points into this for it to remain effective. But it isn’t really needed often to make enemies take off. It also isn’t likely to work on bosses. Demon-type enemies can cast this on the player, making them run and be uncontrollable for several seconds. There are no enemies higher than Level 12 in Broken Valley, so this might see some use if I get into trouble.

Hide in Shadows
– “Swinging broad axes, donning heavy armour, casting sorceries as the arrows whiz about your head, trying to make that precision shot as a howling troll with murder in its eyes stampedes towards you… doing battle can be a gruelling business. Which is why some prefer to give it a miss once in a while, as they become unified with the shadows, invisible to the naked eye. Because why would you go through the trouble of fighting, when you can simply bypass your oblivious opponents?

Casting Cost: 6 -> 35 Mana
Mana/Second: 9 -> 7
Cooldown: 90 seconds
Duration: 10 -> 80 seconds

This is the invisibility skill. It lets you vanish for a short time to escape or drink a potion. In Divine Divinity, there was no limit to how long you could remain invisible, as long as you had mana remaining. Here, the spell will end after a set amount of time, starting at 10 seconds and increasing by 5 seconds per level. Somewhat useful, but it would take 20-30 seconds to start being able to bypass opponents. Not that you want to, they only give experience if you kill them.

Divinity 2 – Level 6 Skills

Most of these skills are available at level 6, with two exceptions that are available at level 7. The next batch of skills comes at level 10, followed by 15 and level 20 for the final skills, thus giving us plenty of room to spend skill points improving skills.

Warrior Skills

The warrior skills at level 6 are a matched pair: An offensive and defensive buff skill. Each class save Ranger has a pair of such skills (Ranger only has an offensive boost), one boosts damage and subtracts defensive ability, the other boosts defensive ability at the cost of damage. Only one buff skill (Battle Rage, Defensive Posture, Way of the Wise Wizard, Way of the Battle Mage, Way of the Ranger) can be active at one time.

The problem with defensive skills compared to offensive ones is simple: Defensive skills provide a fixed number to your armour ratings, and offensive skills provide a percentage boost to your damage. Theoretically, the same character should have an equal chance of surviving if they used either one of the skills, but in practice, the armor boost falls short, so it’s the offensive skill which gives you the survival edge.

Defensive Posture
– “A warrior needs to know when to attack with the ferociousness of the tiger, and when to take a hedgehog-like defensive stance. When in a jam, this skill will provisionally take away some of your offensive powers, but transfer them to your defensive energies.

Mana Cost: 27 -> 195
Cooldown: 30 seconds
Duration: 30 -> 240 seconds
Conditioned Body Bonus: +3 -> 45
Melee Armour Bonus: +3 -> 45
Melee Damage Penalty: -20% -> +18% (Rank 14)
Ranged Damage Penalty: -20% -> +18% (Rank 14)

Boosts your Melee armor and conditioned body ratings, lowers your melee and ranged damage. Points increase the bonus and reduce the penalty. With enough points, eventually the penalty becomes a bonus. Magic damage is unaffected, which might make this the preferred choice for Intelligence-based warriors. Also, at Rank 15, this skill is broken and you lose an 18% bonus to melee and ranged damage (it goes to 0).

Battle Rage
– “The Battle rage skill does exactly what it describes: like a mad barbarian would sieze upon a poorly protected convent, you launch yourself into the fray, heeding not the danger it leaves you in. Most likely any clear and present danger will soon be eliminated, but do remember that this rage detracts from your defensive prowess for its duration.

Mana Cost: 27 -> 195
Cooldown: 30 seconds
Duration: 60 -> 180 seconds
Melee Damage Bonus: +20% -> 160%
Melee Armour Penalty: -42 -> 0

A powerful boost to your melee damage at the cost of melee armor. Points increase the bonus and reduce the penalty. With enough points, eventually the penalty becomes 0. This is a buff I’ll try to have up all the time, and I should be able to keep it up most of the time, since the cooldown is short compared to the duration.

Ranger Skills

Ranger Stealth
– “Like a true haunter of the dark, the ranger who is under this subtle spell’s influence blends into his surroundings with chameleon-like ease. Even when he scores a hit, the ranger still has a chance that the victim of his arrow has no idea where the danger comes from – thus leaving him unexposed.

Enemy Detection Radius: -14% -> -26%

Level 7 is required to use this skill. This is a passive skill which only works if you’re wielding a bow as your current weapon. It reduces the distance at which enemies can see you. You need two points to reach the point where you can see an enemy hit bar before they can see you. More are optional. Useful to get the first hits in, but only take this if you’re a ranger or a mage who won’t engage in melee. Despite the description, this doesn’t make you virtually invisible. Once you engage, enemies will know you’re there.

Potion Efficiency
– “Every adventurer has his trusted health, mana, and other magical potions stuffed safely in his backpack. But not all benefit from them to the maximum. Trained to get the most out of every drop, you are able to squeeze every bit of energy from these treasured bottles.

Potion Effectiveness: +10% -> +75%

This increases the benefit you get from potions of all types. Useful, but not flashy.

Mage Skills

– “This subtle but powerful skill adds a special ability to other sorceries you cast: each time one of your spells like Magic Blast or Fire Wall hits an opponent, it has a chance of stunning that opponent for a while, stripping him of effectiveness in battle.

Stun Chance: 5% -> 13%
Stun Duration: 2 -> 9 seconds

Level 7 is required to use this skill. This passive skill also works with some of the damaging auras which fire retaliatory orbs. The chance to stun is low, but with all the magic you can fling, it can get triggered fairly often in battles.

Magic Blast
– “Damning your opponent with a Magic Blast will surround him with many stab-like thrusts of destructive magic. That might seem somewhat sadistic, but it gets the job done.

Mana Cost: 32 -> 134
Cooldown: 15
Number of hits: 3 -> 7
Damage/hit: 20 -> 176.55
Total Damage: 60 -> 1235.85

A powerful single-target, instant hit spell, it’s very useful. The instant-hit nature means you can target enemies through the Tactical Pause cursor even with other targets between you and them.

Priest Skills

– “Much like the polymorph spell, charming your opponents is aimed at lessening the number of hostiles that seek to plant their pointy ends into your skull. But the Charm spell does not merely immobilize them by turning them into ladybirds: it turns them against each other, so wounding or even killing your opposition before the effect wears off.

Mana Cost: 42 -> 186
Cooldown: 30 -> 20 seconds (At Rank 6, it then jumps up to 25 then down to 24 seconds at Rank 7)
Duration: 20 -> 70 seconds
Targets: 1 -> 3
Enemy Level: 13 -> 49

An interesting skill with a huge drawback. It has a hefty mana cost, is limited by enemy levels, and worst of all, damage done by Charmed enemies counts against the experience they’re worth to you, so if an Charmed enemy kills one of your foes, you get no experience from it. Damage done by one enemy is not likely to wear down the health pool of another enemy, though. And on the up-side, fewer experience from enemies means slower leveling, which means more experience from enemies, so maybe it works out to be the same anyway.

Summon Mastery
– “As if summoning a variety of strange and dangerous creatures to your aid isn’t a powerful enough ability already, Summoning Mastery ensures that those you summon are even more potent than regularly summoned battle helpers. You can probably just stand by and watch the fight.

Damage Boost: 10% -> 30%

The ONLY thing this does is increases the damage the Priest’s Summon Spells do, from 10 up to 30%. At the time you can get it, you have only two summons, and one of them does negligible damage, and the other does very low damage. It does not work to boost  the Crystal Skull Creature . This skill is worthless.