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November 7th, 2006, 13:21
@Acleacius -- the negative reason is simply that most classes have the best perks at the higher class levels, and if you multiclass, you'll never make it -- you need more XP to get there simply because you've "wasted" some XP on your secondary class *and* there may be an XP penalty as well.

You zip through the levels fast early on, and slow down a lot later. The difference between level 1 and 3 is minutes, the difference between 15 and 17 is hours. The point is that the difference between 15 and 17 (wizard) is also the difference between level 8 and level 9 spells -- and the level-niners are real humdingers you wouldn't want to miss out on, and having access to them earlier will make a huuuge difference.

Combine a race with a level penalty with multiclassing, and you'll have a seriously underpowered character. A deep gnome or dark elf fighter/rogue/wizard, for example, would be pretty wimpy -- compared to a straight wizard you'd be at a four or five-level disadvantage, which is severe.

Of course, this applies more to some classes than others. In particular, the classes that rely on spell-casting as their primary function take a big hit, as does the monk, while conversely the fighter-ish/rogue-ish classes do rather well. If you want to mix fighting, stealth, and spellcasting, in general it's a better idea to make the fighter or stealther your primary class and spice it up with some wizard/sorcerer/whatever levels, rather than the other way around -- a few low-level spells in the right place can give you a very significant leg-up, and you won't lose a whole lot in the fighting department (that you can't more than make up for with your newly found magical abilities).

Re the bard -- I'm currently playing as one, and it's actually very nice. The bardic song abilities are really nifty and buff your party up like mad, and the low-level magic she has can swing battles very well too. The point is that a bard alone is pretty wimpy, but as the leader of a well-balanced party can do a lot. It's a very different style of gameplay than the more usual "lone hero" kind and very well suited to NWN2. You can craft as well. However, the bard does play a quite a lot like a multiclass rogue/sorcerer with some extra perks.
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