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I hadn’t seen this mentioned anywhere else, but maybe I missed it. Just picked up the Headband of Intellect. It now changes the wearers Intelligence to 17 instead of 18. That is a good change in my opinion. It’s great for Lae’zel to use as an Eldritch Knight, but would be too weak for a Wizard to use. More appropriate.

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Originally Posted by smberg
I hadn’t seen this mentioned anywhere else, but maybe I missed it. Just picked up the Headband of Intellect. It now changes the wearers Intelligence to 17 instead of 18. That is a good change in my opinion. It’s great for Lae’zel to use as an Eldritch Knight, but would be too weak for a Wizard to use. More appropriate.

It is supposed to be 19... like other stat altering magic items. The idea being that it isn't 20, which is what you would really want it to be as a primary attribute for a class, like wizard in this case.

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Setting Int to 17 is much more reasonable for a level 1-5 magic item. I also approve of this change.

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I think the game's explanation as to why it only sets to 17 instead of the 19 is the fact it's been damaged - i.e. "Warped Headband of Intellect".

Kinda how they justified removing damage reduction from Imps in the tutorial by calling them "lesser imps".

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Originally Posted by mrfuji3
Setting Int to 17 is much more reasonable for a level 1-5 magic item. I also approve of this change.

While they are certainly more than welcome to make lesser versions of magic items if they so desire, the Headband of Intellect and similar magic items are, RAW, uncommon magic items which actually makes them suited for Tier 1 characters (level 1-4) as printed.

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Yes, I noticed this change when I made an Eldritch knight run a fee months ago. A good change!


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As I said in the past, items that "set a stat at 18" aren't actually AS POWERFUL as some make them out to be. Which is why they are rated as "uncommon" even in the official material.
They are typically an useful early game crutch, but on the long run it becomes good enough just for secondary stats, as anyone will want to go above 18 on their primary one AND thse items don't stack with your base value or subsequent investments on the same stat.
This means that any wizard that will naturally aim to achieve 20 as natural value for INT will have no use for that type of headband, for instance.
It's another matter for a class that uses it as a secondary stat, like an Eldritch Knight.

And frankly 17 as a odd number makes this item considerably less appealing. For all intents and purposes 17 is pretty much as good as 16, outside of few fringe scenarios.


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Originally Posted by WebSpyder
While they are certainly more than welcome to make lesser versions of magic items if they so desire, the Headband of Intellect and similar magic items are, RAW, uncommon magic items which actually makes them suited for Tier 1 characters (level 1-4) as printed.
That's fair. I suppose I just don't like the combination of its power, set location, and ease of acquiring. In a typical campaign, you might get a Headband of Intellect at levels 1-4 (likely 4), but it'll be a treasure that you as players can't plan for. It also seems pretty easy to get in BG3; you find some trolls in a house and if you defeat them you get it. It's not at the end of a dungeon or a reward for a difficult quest or anything. All this combined just makes it seem too easy to plan a character around it and then easily acquire the item imo.

All this said, I'm not hugely opposed to it setting Int to 18; I'm just not going to argue for changing it back from 17 to 18. And as @Tuco said, Int of 18 isn't overwhelmingly powerful, even for Int spellcasters.

Originally Posted by Tuco
And frankly 17 as a odd number makes this item considerably less appealing. For all intents and purposes 17 is pretty much as good as 16, outside of few fringe scenarios.
Less fringe since this campaign seems to revolve around Mind Flayers, although this heavily depends on if Larian will give Intellect Devourers their signature ability. Having a 17 in intelligence is definitely better than 16 when it comes to rolling 3d6 and comparing it against your Int Score to see if you lose all your intelligence.

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Originally Posted by mrfuji3
Originally Posted by WebSpyder
While they are certainly more than welcome to make lesser versions of magic items if they so desire, the Headband of Intellect and similar magic items are, RAW, uncommon magic items which actually makes them suited for Tier 1 characters (level 1-4) as printed.
That's fair. I suppose I just don't like the combination of its power, set location, and ease of acquiring. In a typical campaign, you might get a Headband of Intellect at levels 1-4 (likely 4), but it'll be a treasure that you as players can't plan for. It also seems pretty easy to get in BG3; you find some trolls in a house and if you defeat them you get it. It's not at the end of a dungeon or a reward for a difficult quest or anything. All this combined just makes it seem too easy to plan a character around it and then easily acquire the item imo.

That really all depends on how you play DnD. I would argue that AL (Adventurer's League - Wizards official organized league play for DnD) is far more analogous to a CRPG than the standard homebrew campaign as everyone knows or has access to the details of the approved adventures (or adventure in this case) and can plan for and build around what magic items they intend to encounter.

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Originally Posted by WebSpyder
That really all depends on how you play DnD. I would argue that AL (Adventurer's League - Wizards official organized league play for DnD) is far more analogous to a CRPG than the standard homebrew campaign as everyone knows or has access to the details of the approved adventures (or adventure in this case) and can plan for and build around what magic items they intend to encounter.
Are you saying that AL players know the adventure module and thus can look up what items (and NPCs and quests and dungeons etc) they'll encounter, or that they're specifically given knowledge about potential loot but not other adventure information besides generic plot hooks relevant to backgrounds? Because the former - reading adventure modules before playing them - sounds like cheating to me.

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Being +2 Int instead of a fixed 17 would make the Headband of Intellect actually useful for a Wizard who is an Intelligence class.

On an Eldritch Knight an item like this means the best EK build is counter-intuitively the one with the lowest Intelligence. High Elf Fighters don't get any kind of edge as an EK either.

I just don't like the design.

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This is one of those situations where Table Top doesn't translate perfectly into a Videogame.

"Set ability to X" items are more powerful/build-defining in Single Player Games with no loot randomization because you can meta-game it much more easily. The other issue is due to a design choice by Larian. With no item attunement system in place, the game will revolve more around magic items because they can contribute so much more to a character's power.

It probably won't break the game for most normal players, but we'll probably see a lot of min-maxers or speedrunners dump certain stats and rely on these items instead. This existed in BG2 also (ring of human influence, STR belts), and I don't think it was too disruptive, but it does force optimization towards certain metas.

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Originally Posted by mrfuji3
Originally Posted by WebSpyder
That really all depends on how you play DnD. I would argue that AL (Adventurer's League - Wizards official organized league play for DnD) is far more analogous to a CRPG than the standard homebrew campaign as everyone knows or has access to the details of the approved adventures (or adventure in this case) and can plan for and build around what magic items they intend to encounter.
Are you saying that AL players know the adventure module and thus can look up what items (and NPCs and quests and dungeons etc) they'll encounter, or that they're specifically given knowledge about potential loot but not other adventure information besides generic plot hooks relevant to backgrounds? Because the former - reading adventure modules before playing them - sounds like cheating to me.

Not so much reading them (though that is possible if you buy the modules - and while I agree with it being "cheating" how is that any different than looking up all the game details online for a CRPG) but after you've played them once you know them... kind of like a CRPG, yet there is always replayability with other characters and parties... kind of like a CRPG.

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Originally Posted by Topgoon
This is one of those situations where Table Top doesn't translate perfectly into a Videogame.

"Set ability to X" items are more powerful/build-defining in Single Player Games with no loot randomization because you can meta-game it much more easily. The other issue is due to a design choice by Larian. With no item attunement system in place, the game will revolve more around magic items because they can contribute so much more to a character's power.

It probably won't break the game for most normal players, but we'll probably see a lot of min-maxers or speedrunners dump certain stats and rely on these items instead. This existed in BG2 also (ring of human influence, STR belts), and I don't think it was too disruptive, but it does force optimization towards certain metas.

As I previously mentioned... you can meta-game it EXACTLY the same playing in AL. Direct translation from tabletop to CRPG in this instance.

As for the attunement issue... this is yet another mistake Larian has made (imho). The game (5e DnD) is balanced around the majority of magic items requiring attunement and thus leading to decisions on the part of the player as to what items to stack on their character. Simply not implementing attunement is basically the equivalent of them not deciding to include concentration... we're rushing back toward the 2nd edition days opposed to faithfully implementing 5e. Solasta did it easily enough. I'm not seeing the upside to ignoring attunement.

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Originally Posted by Topgoon
This is one of those situations where Table Top doesn't translate perfectly into a Videogame.

"Set ability to X" items are more powerful/build-defining in Single Player Games with no loot randomization because you can meta-game it much more easily. The other issue is due to a design choice by Larian. With no item attunement system in place, the game will revolve more around magic items because they can contribute so much more to a character's power.

It probably won't break the game for most normal players, but we'll probably see a lot of min-maxers or speedrunners dump certain stats and rely on these items instead. This existed in BG2 also (ring of human influence, STR belts), and I don't think it was too disruptive, but it does force optimization towards certain metas.
Yep. Since Larian are so much about "what works in a videogame" they should identify these kinds of items as something that don't.

Unlike tabletop, the headband is always available and it's going to be part of builds. And the stupid kind of builds that no sane person would ever make in tabletop like the 8 Int Wizard. And then a stupid build becomes OP, and it's just... stupid.

I'd much rather play a High Elf EK who is naturally intelligent, and could use such an item to enhance their ability, not replace it or to become on par with another EK with 8 Intelligence (who of course would also have higher stats elsewhere).

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Originally Posted by 1varangian
Originally Posted by Topgoon
This is one of those situations where Table Top doesn't translate perfectly into a Videogame.

"Set ability to X" items are more powerful/build-defining in Single Player Games with no loot randomization because you can meta-game it much more easily. The other issue is due to a design choice by Larian. With no item attunement system in place, the game will revolve more around magic items because they can contribute so much more to a character's power.

It probably won't break the game for most normal players, but we'll probably see a lot of min-maxers or speedrunners dump certain stats and rely on these items instead. This existed in BG2 also (ring of human influence, STR belts), and I don't think it was too disruptive, but it does force optimization towards certain metas.
Yep. Since Larian are so much about "what works in a videogame" they should identify these kinds of items as something that don't.

Unlike tabletop, the headband is always available and it's going to be part of builds. And the stupid kind of builds that no sane person would ever make in tabletop like the 8 Int Wizard. And then a stupid build becomes OP, and it's just... stupid.

I'd much rather play a High Elf EK who is naturally intelligent, and could use such an item to enhance their ability, not replace it or to become on par with another EK with 8 Intelligence (who of course would also have higher stats elsewhere).

So play what you would much rather play. How does what someone else plays have any impact on you at all? This isn't an MMO! And yes... builds exactly like that show up in tabletop all the time. It seems like no one here has ever heard of AL.

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Originally Posted by 1varangian
Being +2 Int instead of a fixed 17 would make the Headband of Intellect actually useful for a Wizard who is an Intelligence class
It would make it TOO useful, which is precisely the problem: it’s supposed to be an “entry level” magic item that looks absolutely amazing at first but turns so-so in the long run. Making it a flat + would make it amazing no matter what.

It’s an item meant to boost int on a character that uses it as a secondary stat… Or before the recent nerf a good placeholder for a low level mage before he would raise his NATIVE Int value.

And yeah, attunement would need to be brought in as a mechanic, anyway.

Also, I absolutely don’t believe in the bullshit about “Pen & paper mechanics that don’t work in videogames”.
There’s no such a thing, just poor or partial implementations.

Recreating the vibe of a pen and paper session is precisely what GOOD CRPGs should strive for.
Every time designers come up with some variation of “Well, it’s a videogame so we’ll use some mechanic that will feel adequately game-y” it turns out to be an abortion.

The randomized loot/lucky charm and the armor system of DOS 2 come to mind.

Even the best videogame-specific systems I can think of in this genre (which is something rare to begin with) were the ones that tries the hardest to capture the p&p feeling. Microprose’s Darklands or Fallout 1and 2 ( which were parroting GURPS after losing the official license) come to mind.

Last edited by Tuco; 13/01/22 02:20 AM.

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If it becomes a part of some peoples builds SO WHAT? The builds this opens up are hardly overpowered. In fact, I'd argue that most of them are weaker than just building a wizard with high intelligence and spending a few level ups on raising it to 20. The headband allows a few meme builds, but mostly people will use those to have a little fun with something weird (like maybe roll a really stupid half-orc that "just happened" to find the headband and become a wizard).

I suppose you could use it to make an eldritch knight with decent spell attack power, but that would probably still be weaker than a battlemaster.

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Imo the circlet is fine as it is. A +2 intelligence bonus would likely not be enough to turn Lump into the enlightened businessman that he is. laugh

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Easy fix; use attunement slots.

Medium fix; nerf the overall powerlevel of certain items to compensate for no attunement.


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