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Ranis
2010-03-02, 06:44 PM
I'm joining a 3.5 game that is starting out level 10, and grabbed dibs on Wizard immediately. I'd like to do something with Master Specialist, but I'm having a hard time deciding what school to specialize in. Advice?

KillianHawkeye
2010-03-02, 06:46 PM
Conjuration and Transmutation have tons of good spells.

faceroll
2010-03-02, 06:49 PM
Conjuration. Transmutation has too many save effects in it. If you like buffing your party, or want an uber familiar, trans could do it. Otherwise, nothing beats the awesomesauce of conjuration.

Geiger Counter
2010-03-02, 06:50 PM
Illusion, These spells have the most flexibility and allow for the most creativity. Then there is shadow conjuration and shadow evocation for maximum utility. This works well if you play a changeling or gnome.

Ranis
2010-03-02, 06:52 PM
My fear with illusion is if we're fighting things that are immune to mind-effecting spells and effects, and the baddies being immune to most of my prepared spells.

Dusk Eclipse
2010-03-02, 06:58 PM
Actually is better to use illusion against mindless things, for example a human will know something is off when a wall appears in front of them while a zombie will just persive (sp?) that something has appeared in front of him.

Also not all the illusion spells (the shadow______ line of spell for example) are mind affecting, plus I believe that nightmare spinner let you by pass this.

Sinfire Titan
2010-03-02, 06:58 PM
Illusion, These spells have the most flexibility and allow for the most creativity. Then there is shadow conjuration and shadow evocation for maximum utility. This works well if you play a changeling or gnome.

Illusion is heavily limited when thinking on your feet. Conjuration can actually replicate most of the important ideas while buying you time to think something up for your Illusions to replicate.



In general:

Conjuration
Transmutation



Illusion



Abjuration
Necromancy






Enchantment
Evocation.



Divination is excluded. You should never be a Divination specialist, but you can't ban the school. Thus, it gets left out.

Koury
2010-03-02, 07:06 PM
At Master Specialist 10 (Conjuation) you cast Conj spells as a Swift. Thats pretty damn good, in my opinion. Stands out among the Major Esotericas, to me.

Optimystik
2010-03-02, 07:06 PM
I put Evocation above Enchantment actually; at least half your school can't be blocked by a level 1 spell even at late levels. Also, Contingency is more useful than just about everything in the Enchantment school.

The above was @ Sinfire

KillianHawkeye
2010-03-02, 07:07 PM
You should never be a Divination specialist, but you can't ban the school. Thus, it gets left out.

Why not? I thought that was the batman wizard's #1 choice.

faceroll
2010-03-02, 07:10 PM
I put Evocation above Enchantment actually; at least half your school can't be blocked by a level 1 spell even at late levels. Also, Contingency is more useful than just about everything in the Enchantment school.

The above was @ Sinfire

I really like ray of stupidity, mind rape, and that one vile spell that siphons away a target's intelligence and gives it to you. Dominate effects can sure be handy, but situational, and as you aptly point out, negated by a single 1st level spell.

Is power word pain enchantment?

lsfreak
2010-03-02, 07:19 PM
Why not? I thought that was the batman wizard's #1 choice.

Divinations are incredibly useful, but don't warrant spending 3 spell slots every level on like a Conjurer (assuming Focused Specialist, which you should usually at least consider).

One thing in favor of Enchantment over Evo is how powerful it can be before things end up with all the immunities. Not enough to save from banning, generally, but enough to have some serious fun with at early levels, especially in a social-oriented campaign.

Optimystik
2010-03-02, 07:20 PM
I really like ray of stupidity, mind rape, and that one vile spell that siphons away a target's intelligence and gives it to you. Dominate effects can sure be handy, but situational, and as you aptly point out, negated by a single 1st level spell.

Is power word pain enchantment?

Evocation can reliably target two saves with enough splats (reflex and fort.) 99% of Enchantment targets just one.

Mindrape is nice, but far too many creatures are immune to mind-affecting or can get their hands on Mindblank. Ray of Stupidity has the same problem, AND is blocked by Pro: X due to being a compulsion. I don't know the siphon spell, but I'm sure it also runs into one of the above.

Sinfire Titan
2010-03-02, 07:23 PM
Why not? I thought that was the batman wizard's #1 choice.

It was before Treantmonk did a review of the individual spells and of Focused Specialist. He proved the variant was worth taking over Generalist (the only things competing with it were Elven Generalist and Domain Wizard).

Once that happened, pretty much everyone agreed you didn't need the extra slots for just Divination spells, as there weren't enough spells above 5th level worth preparing (even with Core+Completes+Completes 2+PH2). It was also deemed that losing either Abjuration or Necromancy was an acceptable loss depending on the party's construction (if there's a Cleric or Druid, for example, you can live without Abjuration, and if there's a Dread Necromancer you can simply ban Necromancy and never care).

Illusion is usually worth keeping even if a Beguiler is in the party. Transmutation and Conjuration are obviously more powerful than most schools, and should never be banned.

faceroll
2010-03-02, 07:30 PM
Evocation can reliably target two saves with enough splats (reflex and fort.) 99% of Enchantment targets just one.

Mindrape is nice, but far too many creatures are immune to mind-affecting or can get their hands on Mindblank. Ray of Stupidity has the same problem, AND is blocked by Pro: X due to being a compulsion. I don't know the siphon spell, but I'm sure it also runs into one of the above.

Mind Rape & Mind Leech (or whatever) aren't used in combat; you use them on captured, incapacitated or otherwise affectable enemies.

Sinfire Titan
2010-03-02, 07:32 PM
Mind Rape & Mind Leech (or whatever) aren't used in combat; you use them on captured, incapacitated or otherwise affectable enemies.

Kinda hard to do if they are naturally immune to Mind Affecting (which is free to anyone of Evil alignment).

faceroll
2010-03-02, 07:37 PM
Kinda hard to do if they are naturally immune to Mind Affecting (which is free to anyone of Evil alignment).

This is correct; if everything in the campaign world is evil and dedicated to an elder evil, virtually all enchantment effects won't work (the ones that give morale bonuses can be nice, though).

But I'm going to assume that's a somewhat rare event.

Sinfire Titan
2010-03-02, 07:41 PM
This is correct; if everything in the campaign world is evil and dedicated to an elder evil, virtually all enchantment effects won't work (the ones that give morale bonuses can be nice, though).

But I'm going to assume that's a somewhat rare event.

True. Still, considering how many Undead and Constructs are in the various sources...


Really, Enchantment works best if you absolutely know you will be facing Humanoid opponents for most of the campaign. Not just politically, but in combat as well. Enchantment can't target nonhumanoids that easily at the lower levels (Charm Person is 1st, Charm Monster is 5th).

In the long run, it becomes more worthwhile to just ban the school and zombify the minions you want to keep. There are ways to make them retain their sentience, after all.

faceroll
2010-03-02, 07:51 PM
True. Still, considering how many Undead and Constructs are in the various sources...


Really, Enchantment works best if you absolutely know you will be facing Humanoid opponents for most of the campaign. Not just politically, but in combat as well. Enchantment can't target nonhumanoids that easily at the lower levels (Charm Person is 1st, Charm Monster is 5th).

In the long run, it becomes more worthwhile to just ban the school and zombify the minions you want to keep. There are ways to make them retain their sentience, after all.

Nevermind; Power Leech is necromancy, not enchantment. It's still a good reason to keep necromancy, if you don't mind being Vile. Bind something with high intelligence, then use a persisted ocular power leech to take all their intelligence and get a bunch of bonus spell slots.

Runestar
2010-03-02, 08:26 PM
At Master Specialist 10 (Conjuation) you cast Conj spells as a Swift. Thats pretty damn good, in my opinion. Stands out among the Major Esotericas, to me.

It is only 3/day, but still a very strong ability.

2010-03-02, 08:33 PM
It is only 3/day, but still a very strong ability.

Especially if used with the summon monster X spells.

With alternative class feature in Unearthed Arcana you have summon monster spells as a swift action.
Combine with the Malconvoker prc and you have 4 summoned monsters of highest level in one round, or just do multiple lower level 1d4s of monsters: spam the battlefield right off the bat.

magic9mushroom
2010-03-02, 09:28 PM
This is correct; if everything in the campaign world is evil and dedicated to an elder evil, virtually all enchantment effects won't work (the ones that give morale bonuses can be nice, though).

But I'm going to assume that's a somewhat rare event.

You don't have to be dedicated to an Elder Evil. That just gives the free feat. Deformity (Madness) can be taken without being dedicated to an Elder Evil.

Ishcumbeebeeda
2010-03-02, 09:30 PM
Once that happened, pretty much everyone agreed you didn't need the extra slots for just Divination spells, as there weren't enough spells above 5th level worth preparing (even with Core+Completes+Completes 2+PH2).

Wait a sec.... There are Complete 2's??

Sinfire Titan
2010-03-02, 09:33 PM
Wait a sec.... There are Complete 2's??

CC, CM, CS, Bo9S. My nickname for those books.

Ishcumbeebeeda
2010-03-02, 09:57 PM
CC, CM, CS, Bo9S. My nickname for those books.

Ah, okay. I thought for a second that there were books I didn't have. Not sure if I'm sad or relieved...

elonin
2010-03-02, 10:28 PM
Illusion has some interesting uses at lower levels like making a fake wall to ambush or hide or creating fake hazards. There is a problem with Illusion and Enchantment in that a sizable chunk of those spells are mind affecting which a lot of nasties are immune to. Evocation has the trouble of damage not scaling and many of those spells being subject to SR. Out of the rest Conjuration is a strong contender with damage spells without SR to summons and battle field control.

HunterOfJello
2010-03-02, 10:35 PM
Here are some good Wizard links


Focused Specialst is better than you think (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19864630/Focused_Specialist_is_better_than_you_think)

Conjurer's Handbook (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19863086/The_Conjurers_Handbook)

Wizard's Handbook (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19869222/The_Wizards_Handbook)

and the amazing

A guide to Wizards: Playing a GOD (http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=394.0)



~

If I had the chance, I'd love to play a Wizard in 3.5e with Focused Specialist: Conjuration

Jarrick
2010-03-02, 11:16 PM
Is there no love for Necromancy? Ray/Waves of exhaustion, Shivering touch, Escalating enfeeblement, spectral hand + ghoul touch, fear, magic jar, blindness, slay living, finger of death, Enervation? Not to mention all the fun you can have with the undead. :smallbiggrin: Where's the love?

Tinydwarfman
2010-03-02, 11:30 PM
Is there no love for Necromancy? Ray/Waves of exhaustion, Shivering touch, Escalating enfeeblement, spectral hand + ghoul touch, fear, magic jar, blindness, slay living, finger of death, Enervation? Not to mention all the fun you can have with the undead. :smallbiggrin: Where's the love?

I Agree you shouldn't ban it, but specializing? Also has some nasty roleplaying implications for some of it's best stuff.

JeminiZero
2010-03-02, 11:55 PM
I Agree you shouldn't ban it, but specializing? Also has some nasty roleplaying implications for some of it's best stuff.

Like Astral Projection? (Yes one of the ultimate defensive spells is in Necromancy of all schools.)

To answer the Ops question: Diviner is a good "general" specialization to pick if you're not going with Focused Specialist. That way you only lose one school, and you can ditch evocation without too much trouble.

If you do go with Focused Specialist, then my vote for specialization would also be for Conjuration, preferably with Abrupt Jaunt.

GoodbyeSoberDay
2010-03-02, 11:56 PM
As far as your choice of PrC goes, Master Conjurer > Master Transmuter, and since those are the two schools you probably want to specialize in anyway, I'd go conjurer. The level 10 capstone is just lovely.

Optimystik
2010-03-03, 01:50 AM
Is there no love for Necromancy? Ray/Waves of exhaustion, Shivering touch, Escalating enfeeblement, spectral hand + ghoul touch, fear, magic jar, blindness, slay living, finger of death, Enervation? Not to mention all the fun you can have with the undead. :smallbiggrin: Where's the love?

If you're going to be an FS/MS Necro, you might as well just be a Dread Necro or a Pale Master.

Superglucose
2010-03-03, 02:00 AM
At Master Specialist 10 (Conjuation) you cast Conj spells as a Swift. Thats pretty damn good, in my opinion. Stands out among the Major Esotericas, to me.
Abjuration is also absurd. Ranged touch anti-magic field = bye-bye enemy casters. Plus being able to have "evasion" but for fort and will saves is nice as well, as is having a healthy +5 to your CL that lets you go beyond the +20 maximum.