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Lysander
2010-03-29, 11:39 AM
This is a pretty cool feat. It lets you pick one spell, then spontaneously cast any prepared spell of equal or higher level as that spell.

Obviously you'd want to use it on spells that you sometimes need to cast several times a day but other times not at all. What do you think are good choices for it?

*Fly comes to mind. You don't always need to make a bunch of people fly, but it'd be handy to be able to do so whenever needed.

*Dimension Door - being able to teleport away from danger is always a useful trick to have up your sleeve.

*Alter Self - So is shapeshifting

*Invisibility - So is invisibility

*Any useful all-purpose attack spell. So you can just maximize the number of utility spells prepared to cover any random situation, but always have brute force as an option. Fireball, Magic Missile, etc.

*Any useful all-purpose defense spell. Same reasoning as above. Blink, Shield, etc.

*An emergency spell like feather fall. That way you're always ready for an emergency but don't need to waste a spell slot each day on it.

Vulaas
2010-03-29, 11:45 AM
If a shadowcraft mage, then silent image would be fantastic.

Dusk Eclipse
2010-03-29, 11:47 AM
I was going to say wings of covers, but since it is a sorcerer only spell it doesn't matter really unless you somehow get it on the wizard spell list

nekomata2
2010-03-29, 11:54 AM
For a swiftblade, at least, the obvious answer is haste.

arguskos
2010-03-29, 12:13 PM
I'd prefer to just play a Magelord and have all my mastered spells be Signature Spells! :smallcool:

Lapak
2010-03-29, 12:31 PM
Disintegrate seems like a good choice. It's a spell that is the only solution to some problems, a good solution to others, and a solid utility spell. Sometimes you'll want to cast it once (drop a Wall of Force, make a hole to explore or escape) and sometimes you'll want to cast it a bunch of times (vulnerable undead enemies, cut a path through a labyrinth.)

subject42
2010-03-29, 01:22 PM
Ruin Delver's fortune (SpC) would be a good one, since it's an immediate action that can apply to pretty much every bad thing ever.

Shivering Touch, to make your DM cry.

Power words could be good, as well.

Ernir
2010-03-29, 02:32 PM
A feat is expensive for this luxury, though.
Two feats doubly so. It has Spell Mastery as a prereq. :smallfrown:

So yeah. If you're someone who really has a signature spell, and whose entire power relies on having access to it (as has been mentioned, Haste for the Swiftblade and Silent Image for the ScM) and you are afraid you might lose your spellbook/get locked up, maybe.

But definitely not for the purposes of "you never know when you need a bunch of this". That's what scrolls are for.

Kobold-Bard
2010-03-29, 03:04 PM
For a swiftblade, at least, the obvious answer is haste.

Force Missile Mage - Magic Missile. All the single spell focussed PrC's do well from this.


I'd prefer to just play a Magelord and have all my mastered spells be Signature Spells! :smallcool:

Is Magelord a PrC? Where be it from?

arguskos
2010-03-29, 03:06 PM
Is Magelord a PrC? Where be it from?
Magelord is a PrC from Lost Empires of Faerun. It's easily divorced from the setting. Basically, it uses the Spell Mastery feat to give you a large list of Signature Spells. :smallamused:

Kobold-Bard
2010-03-29, 04:11 PM
Magelord is a PrC from Lost Empires of Faerun. It's easily divorced from the setting. Basically, it uses the Spell Mastery feat to give you a large list of Signature Spells. :smallamused:

Looks cool. Thanks. Must remember to get around to reading the Faerun books eventually.

ericgrau
2010-03-29, 04:19 PM
Obviously you'd want to use it on spells that you sometimes need to cast several times a day but other times not at all. What do you think are good choices for it?

I agree with this concept. Anything spammable yet skippable is nice. I'll add sleet storm to the list. You'd be amazed how few problems cannot be solved with liberal application of sleet storm(s).



*An emergency spell like feather fall. That way you're always ready for an emergency but don't need to waste a spell slot each day on it.
I disagree with this concept. Instead you waste a feat on it. And a 1st level spell slot seems cheap enough to blow each day on something this nice.

I disagree with damage spells too. Even a force missile mage won't want magic missile. He'll want maximized empowered magic missile, with the metamagic subject to change at level ups. A vanilla fireball could last a bit longer, but its effectiveness still wanes. If OTOH the feat allows spontaneous metamagic, then it's a great idea for damage spells.

Runestar
2010-03-29, 04:31 PM
Magelord can be viewed for free here.
http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20050202a&page=2

Signature is cool, but kinda pales in comparison to uncanny forethought (exemplars of evil), unless there is some spell you may want to keep casting again and again. :smalltongue:

Keld Denar
2010-03-29, 05:47 PM
If a shadowcraft mage, then silent image would be fantastic.

The only issue with this is that spontaneously applying metamagic (ie Heighten Spell) for use with Shadow Illusion, you run into the fact that your casting time is increased to a full round. The patch to this is obviously the Rapid Metamagic feat, but thats adding 3 feats to an already feat starved character concept.

1 Spell Focus: Illusion
3 Earth Sense
5 Heighten Spell
6 Earth Spell
9 Spell Mastery
12 Signature Spell
15 Rapid Metamagic

Yea...that ties up everything but your 18th level feat and requires you to wait til 15th level to use the trick. No thanks.

TheCountAlucard
2010-03-29, 06:12 PM
Yea...that ties up everything but your 18th level feat and requires you to wait til 15th level to use the trick.What about flaws? That'd cut it down to 9th level, if you did it right.

Zaq
2010-03-29, 06:24 PM
Personally, I think that never being without a Dispel Magic (of the most powerful flavor currently available) would be worthwhile. You can ALWAYS find a use for ensuring that someone else is less magical than you.

Keld Denar
2010-03-29, 06:27 PM
Even then, it would be better to invest those feats in something that increases potency like Enhanced Shadow Reality or Metamagic School Focus, something to increase survivability like Minor Shapeshift, or something that increases stamina like Residual Metamagic or Echoing Spell.

sofawall
2010-03-29, 06:39 PM
What about flaws? That'd cut it down to 9th level, if you did it right.

Metamagic Storm lowers it by another.

The Valiant Turtle
2010-03-29, 07:16 PM
I've actually taken this feat before and dispel magic was my spell, but I was playing an abjurer and it was as much for Role Playing reasons as power, but it is a great choice. I actually blew every spell slot I could trying to dispel something much higher than us and didn't get it. I think it was a Vampire's dominate, which was temporarily suppressed due to Protection from Evil.

flabort
2010-03-29, 08:30 PM
spell mastery only needs 1st level wizard, and true strike is always nice to have, and being 1st level...

Human wizard 3/fighter X
H: spell mastery
1st: signature spell (true strike)
3rd: Combat Casting
Further feats: according to charger build...

a few combat based spells, and the ability to make sure you hit something, for the cost of 3 fighter levels. most of you would be worried about losing caster levels, but a charger could really benifite from it.

Glimbur
2010-03-29, 08:34 PM
It'd be cheaper to dip wizard, or cleric with Magic domain, or use other ways to be able to use a wand of True Strike. Money is cheaper than levels, which are cheaper than feats, which are are cheaper than levels of casting advancement, generally. Spending three levels to get what you can get with one and some cash is... not optimal.

Stubbed Tongue
2010-03-29, 08:52 PM
How about a summon monster spell. You could summon a combatant or a critter that could buff/heal you or perhaps translate a language, etc. All dependent on level of course. I think summon monster is versatile at any level after say...Summon Monster five.

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-29, 09:11 PM
Even then, it would be better to invest those feats in something that increases potency like Enhanced Shadow Reality or Metamagic School Focus, something to increase survivability like Minor Shapeshift, or something that increases stamina like Residual Metamagic or Echoing Spell.

Really so having your shadow magic all be spontaneous isn't useful? Instead of preparing a bunch of heighten silent images to turn into shadow spells you prepare other things and swap them out as you cast your shadow magic as needed.

Also you can get it by 6th level if you take the illusionist variant from unearthed arcana which makes any illusion spell you learn treated as if mastered it with the Spell Mastery feat.

The point of signature spell is to pick a spell your likely to need multiple times, not for simple emergency utilities for which scrolls suffice,
dispel magic works obviously as you never know if you'll need it or not or how many times, same goes for disintegrate.

But for a shadowmage there bread and butter is heightening the simple figment silent image then transforming it into horrible shadow magic what is often over 100% real.

Keld Denar
2010-03-29, 09:43 PM
Have you ever played a Shadowcraft Mage? You seriously only mem about 1-3 spells per level that AREN'T Heightened Minor Image. The other 3-5 spells or whatever is left are all Heightened Minor Image, which is exactly what you are gonna use them for.

If they are gonna end up as Heightened Minor Images, you aren't really gaining that much versatility by blowing 3 feats. Just my opinion from personal experience playing one.

EDIT: Its not bad. Its good. Its just not worth blowing 3 whole feats for it.

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-29, 10:45 PM
Have you ever played a Shadowcraft Mage? You seriously only mem about 1-3 spells per level that AREN'T Heightened Minor Image. The other 3-5 spells or whatever is left are all Heightened Minor Image, which is exactly what you are gonna use them for.

If they are gonna end up as Heightened Minor Images, you aren't really gaining that much versatility by blowing 3 feats. Just my opinion from personal experience playing one.

EDIT: Its not bad. Its good. Its just not worth blowing 3 whole feats for it.
I've played plenty of wizards before and know that versatility is the bread and butter. And it doesn't take 3 feats.
First you falsely assume rapid-metamagic is necessary it's not. If you have to be spending a move action every round to avoid the enemy you have a problem.
And as I already stated the Illusion Mastery specialist variant covers the spell mastery feat so actually signature spell takes as little as one feat, signature spell its self.

I'm playing a gnome on that very path right now, he's Wiz5/Shadow Adept1/Shadowcrafter1, his next 3 levels are to be shadowcraft mage.

Keld Denar
2010-03-29, 11:12 PM
This ability?


Illusion Mastery (Ex): An illusionist using this variant automatically adds two illusion spells to his spellbook every time he gains a level that grants access to a new spell level. Furthermore, any time the illusionist learns a new illusion spell, he treats that spell as if he had mastered it with the Spell Mastery feat. An illusionist using this variant does not gain additional spells per day for being a specialist wizard.


First of all, you are only treated as having the Spell Mastery feat with regards to being able to prep spells. Signature Spell still requires you to actually have the feat Spell Mastery in order to meet the prereqs to take it.

Second, you are taking that in place of Focused Specialization, given that you are giving up the extra spells/day for being an Illusionist. The extra spells per day give you WAY more versatility than Spell Mastery ever would. Thats 3 spells per level dedicated to Shadow Illusions, and 2 more spells per spell level that increase your daily stamina.

Third, if you are going as far as to make all of your Silent Images spontaneous, you are probably gonna put most of your spells in spells that aren't Heightened Silent Image. Not having your move action available when you need it IS crippling. If you are prepping a lot of Silent Images to keep your move action available, then whats the point of being able to cast them all spontaneously?

Like I said, getting it is nice. If you play smart enough, though, you won't need it, and you can spend those feats on something that gives you more sustained strength and power. Its just not worth the investment in the case of the Shadowcraft Mage.

Irreverent Fool
2010-03-29, 11:57 PM
If you have to be spending a move action every round to avoid the enemy you have a problem

It's not the loss of the move action that's the problem, it's having to fait a whole round before anything happens:


A spell that takes 1 round to cast is a full-round action. It comes into effect just before the beginning of your turn in the round after you began casting the spell. You then act normally after the spell is completed.

obnoxious
sig

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-30, 12:09 AM
"Furthermore, any time the illusionist learns a new illusion spell, he treats that spell as if he had mastered it with the Spell Mastery feat"

I effectively have spell mastery for every illusion spell I learn so its perfectly reasonable that I qualify for a feat that requires spell mastery. Its the old virtual feat rule and most groups I know still use it.

Giving up a 3rd school of magic for the sake of Focused Specialization would have been painful, I and the party do need to survive tell I get there after all.
I suppose I could have given up necromancy that have been least painful in short term and long term.

Second, I only became aware of focused specialization quite recently, so that wasn't an option when I made him.

Third, I don't think anything stops you from taking BOTH illusion mastery and Focused Specialist
Illusion mastery makes you give up the bonus spells perday for being a specialist wizard, but your still a specialist wizard.
Focused Specialization lets you prepare two additional spells of your specialty
school per spell level each day in addition to the one for being a specialist.

So the way I figure it nothing stops you from taking both.

Hmm, I may have to speak to my DM about retraining, I can't give up transmutation I have plans for that school. could do necromancy it helps that so far I haven't actually used that school yet.

And given it only cost me one feat, I can afford to take rapid-metamagic later. Having the silent images be spontaneous also helps with other metamagic feats. The kinds that can't normally be applied to silent image but could then be applied to a spontaneous.


It's not the loss of the move action that's the problem, it's having to wait a whole round before anything happens:
sig

Wrong, from the FAQ, and the poster below say otherwise.

Teron
2010-03-30, 12:14 AM
It's not the loss of the move action that's the problem, it's having to fait a whole round before anything happens:
That's a common mistake. However:


Casting a Metamagic Spell
Sorcerers and bards must take more time to cast a metamagic spell (one enhanced by a metamagic feat) than a regular spell. If a spellís normal casting time is 1 standard action, casting a metamagic version of the spell is a full-round action for a sorcerer or bard. Note that this isnít the same as a spell with a 1-round casting timeóthe spell takes effect in the same round that you begin casting, and you arenít required to continue the invocations, gestures, and concentration until your next turn. For spells with a longer casting time, it takes an extra full-round action to cast the metamagic spell.

Keld Denar
2010-03-30, 12:29 AM
"Furthermore, any time the illusionist learns a new illusion spell, he treats that spell as if he had mastered it with the Spell Mastery feat"

I effectively have spell mastery for every illusion spell I learn so its perfectly reasonable that I qualify for a feat that requires spell mastery. Its the old virtual feat rule and most groups I know still use it.

Houserule. You either have the feat, or you don't. Being treated as having the feat is not the same as having the feat, except where EXPLICITLY noted, like under Dwarf Fighter1 sub, Axe focus can be treated as the Weapon Focus feat for determining prereqs. Illusion Master bears no such clause. Thus, its a house rule, and not subject to debate on public forum without being denoted as a house rule.



Third, I don't think anything stops you from taking BOTH illusion mastery and Focused Specialist
Illusion mastery makes you give up the bonus spells perday for being a specialist wizard, but your still a specialist wizard.
Focused Specialization lets you prepare two additional spells of your specialty
school per spell level each day in addition to the one for being a specialist.

So the way I figure it nothing stops you from taking both.

No, Illusion Mastery makes you give up all of the spells you gain from specialization. Allow me to quote again:

Illusion Mastery (Ex): An illusionist using this variant automatically adds two illusion spells to his spellbook every time he gains a level that grants access to a new spell level. Furthermore, any time the illusionist learns a new illusion spell, he treats that spell as if he had mastered it with the Spell Mastery feat. An illusionist using this variant does not gain additional spells per day for being a specialist wizard.

Any additional spells due to specialization. All of them. Focused or not.

You can bring up your house rules in a discussion on a forum, but most people around here go by RAW, since thats the only thing we all have in common. Don't confuse rules as YOU interpret them with the rules as written.

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-30, 12:46 AM
Nothing in Illusion Mastery says it applies to focused specialization.
It says "An illusionist using this variant does not gain additional spells per day for being a specialist wizard."
It doesn't say any, it doesn't say all.

Focused specialization, gives two additional spells in addition to those.
Look at the exact wording of the focused specialization, it says the two bonus slots are in addition to those for being a specialist, thus there is a RAW argument you can do both.

The virtual feat is an old 3.0 which basically stated if you have a class ability that duplicates the effects of a feat it qualifies as the prerequisite. It was designed for rangers and such, but it pops up in usefulness in 3.5 now and again. Mostly for stuff like the Dread Necromancer who has a class ability that functions exactly like the corpsecrafter feat.

So no its not a house rule, its still 3rd edition.
By default 3.0 rules are still valid in 3.5 unless elements have specifically been over written.
So there is nothing to say the old "Virtual Feat" rule no longer exists.

Keld Denar
2010-03-30, 01:10 AM
Nothing in Illusion Mastery says it applies to focused specialization.
It says "An illusionist using this variant does not gain additional spells per day for being a specialist wizard."
It doesn't say any, it doesn't say all.

Thats because UA was printed long before Complete Mage. It makes you give up spells from specialization. Focused Specialization is specialization. You give up those spells. Thats the way it is.



The virtual feat is an old 3.0 which basically stated if you have a class ability that duplicates the effects of a feat it qualifies as the prerequisite. It was designed for rangers and such, but it pops up in usefulness in 3.5 now and again. Mostly for stuff like the Dread Necromancer who has a class ability that functions exactly like the corpsecrafter feat.

So no its not a house rule, its still 3rd edition.
By default 3.0 rules are still valid in 3.5 unless elements have specifically been over written.
So there is nothing to say the old "Virtual Feat" rule no longer exists.

No, the entire set of base rules is thrown out. The only things from 3.0 that are still valid are classes and feats and such that weren't reprinted. Otherwise, all of the rules for combat and such are a wholesale replacement for the previous edition. Everything else is considered to be errated by ommision. If the rule of "virtual" whatevers wasn't reprinted, it was intentional because it was retardedly complicated. So no, its not a rule. Its a house rule and thus not applicable for discussion unless you cite it specifically as such.

Can we please move on?

Cyclocone
2010-03-30, 06:14 AM
Rary's Arcane Conversion is the signature spell.
Analyze Portal? yeah, I prepped one. Raise From The Deep? got that. Detect Dragonmark? yup. Mass Make Manifest? Need you even ask?

On the feat cost issue: Halruaan Elder (Shining South) gets free signature spells along with everything else.