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Goldenbelmont
2010-04-05, 03:20 AM
I was looking at making a 2nd edition batman wizard. however, when it comes to specialization I dont get to pick the banned schools. I was thinking Enchanter as the way of specializing, but with Copy and Cromatic Orb as an evocation spell, its too good to pass up. My question is what would be the ideal choice of school to specialize in knowing that you are forced to give up certain required schools, or would it just be safer to not specialize and miss out on the extra spell per spell level?

Kurald Galain
2010-04-05, 03:28 AM
Specializing is still a good deal.

The fact that you miss one or two schools is a loss in theory, because in practice there's still plenty of spells to fill your list with. The fact that you have an extra spell-per-day at each level is a gain in practice.

However, it does help to specialize in schools that have a lot of spells; so for AD&D that would pretty much be Alteration or Invocation. Possibly a few others if you have a lot of splatbooks.

Irreverent Fool
2010-04-05, 03:56 AM
If you want to be Batman in 2e, all you have to do is play an Illusionist. You can duplicate nearly any effect with an illusion and even an illusory fireball can be as deadly as the real thing.

Plus, you can be a gnome.

obnoxious
sig

GoodbyeSoberDay
2010-04-05, 04:07 AM
So that clip of Adam West running through a town holding a black powder bomb over his head was all an illusion? Sadness.

Tangent: what's with the "obnoxious sig" stuff?

Zombimode
2010-04-05, 04:19 AM
You could also try a Harsadeur (Wild Mage). They get extra spell slots like specialists, but you can use them for any spell. They have access to all schools.

Downsides are:
-5% learning chance to all spells save special wild magic spells.
No saving throw modifications.
Casting level is somewhat... uhm.. unstable.
5% chance your spell is accompanied by a wild surge. This can be good and/or bad, but it is always great fun :)

Optimystik
2010-04-05, 05:17 AM
Tangent: what's with the "obnoxious sig" stuff?

If I may hazard a guess, it's a parody of all the posters that feel the need to "sign off" their posts within the body rather than using the signature function as it was intended.

Also, seconding Gnome Illusionist. It's a staple!

Sholos
2010-04-05, 05:27 AM
If I may hazard a guess, it's a parody of all the posters that feel the need to "sign off" their posts within the body rather than using the signature function as it was intended.

Also, seconding Gnome Illusionist. It's a staple!

If I remember correctly, it's a tribute to a former poster.

As for being Batman in AD&D, I also think Illusionist is the way to roll. Just so good, and you only lose out on Necromancy.

Zombimode
2010-04-05, 05:33 AM
As for being Batman in AD&D, I also think Illusionist is the way to roll. Just so good, and you only lose out on Necromancy.

Check again. Illusionist looses Evocation, Necromancy AND Abjuration.

Sholos
2010-04-05, 05:37 AM
Check again. Illusionist looses Evocation, Necromancy AND Abjuration.

What? 2nd Edition, right? I could have sworn that each school only had one opposed school, and that Illusion's was Necromancy.

Kish
2010-04-05, 05:39 AM
Baldur's Gate isn't tabletop AD&D.

Zombimode
2010-04-05, 05:41 AM
Exactly. While great games, dont trust BG and IWD on AD&D rules accuracy.

Kurald Galain
2010-04-05, 05:41 AM
What? 2nd Edition, right? I could have sworn that each school only had one opposed school, and that Illusion's was Necromancy.
Every school has two opposed schools, except for divination (which has one because of its low power level) and illusion (because it's the only school open to gnomes, and apparently this needs to be balanced by a third "drop").

RagnaroksChosen
2010-04-05, 07:22 AM
Not being neer my books but I could have sworn Transmutation was the powerhouse of 2nd ed. Do to the sheer amount of spells in the school.

hamlet
2010-04-05, 07:32 AM
I'd recommend Alteration, actually.

For the most part, the Transmutation school has the most "utility" type spells there, and, frankly, some of the best that don't involve saves for your enemies. Enlarge is a nice spell to have at first level, but becomes a massive boost by 7th or 8th. Adding 80% extra damage per strike to a sturdy fighter's combat is just brutal.

You only lose Abjuration and Necromancy, and there aren't really any stellar spells in either in core (except dispel magic, but that was later erratta'ed into a "universal" school anyway). Plus, you get to keep conjuration/summoning and Invocation/Evocation.

Currently playing a campaign with a Transmuter on the team at 8th level. He's absolutely lethal when he remembers not to cast things like magic missile, which is a huge trap of a spell IMO.

Starbuck_II
2010-04-05, 08:55 AM
Do'nt lose Haste. Best save or die there ever was (System Shock rules).

Kurald Galain
2010-04-05, 09:02 AM
Do'nt lose Haste. Best save or die there ever was (System Shock rules).
...and that is why 2E runs on the DM's judgment, and not on abusing rules technicalities as a loophole.

RagnaroksChosen
2010-04-05, 09:03 AM
...and that is why 2E runs on the DM's judgment, and not on abusing rules technicalities as a loophole.

whats wrong with doing that. It's specificaly ages you. you could in theory if you have enough castings of haste... age the person to death.

ericgrau
2010-04-05, 09:07 AM
Some control spells like web are still AD&D classics.

Slayn82
2010-04-05, 09:52 AM
Even being an Evoker is good stuff too, because enemies have way less HP than in 3rd edition. And the spell resistance will stop a lot of things of other schools too, because it works on a diferent level in the second edition. Anything with good spell resistance is meant for the guys with the sticks to take down.

Personally, i would go with plain wizard. For good spells, i recomend the illusions as they deal damage like the original creature on those who believe them.

Taelas
2010-04-05, 09:57 AM
An invoker/evoker isn't a Batman wizard, though.

hamlet
2010-04-05, 10:44 AM
An invoker/evoker isn't a Batman wizard, though.

That's absolutely true, but in perfect honesty, a blaster type wizard can be absolutely terrifying in AD&D since HP's are significantly more limited and saving throws still allow half the damage through and he'll still have access to a lot of the utility spells that make batmen batman.

There's nothing like a Web spell at low levels to make that onrushing horde of goblins look a lot more manageble. And at higher levels, it's a great tool for battlefield control and shaping since even more powerful foes may not want to spend a huge amount of effort wading through all those webs.

Cuaqchi
2010-04-05, 10:55 AM
Also remember that you must spend X hours to memorize X level spells. Finding your foe and preparing attacks specifically for him will result in the target having left to do something else.

As a result the three best primary schools in AD&D are Evocation (Lower max HP, no Evasion), Conjuration (Having backup means less spells need to cast), Illusion (Weak Mimicry of both the above schools)

Premier
2010-04-05, 11:58 AM
Just as a thought experiment, if you're only interested in maximizing the variety of spells you can cast plus the number of spell you have per day, the best choice would be the Sha'ir from the Al-Qadim setting.

They can cast as many spells as they wish (only limited by casting time and length of day), and the spells can be any they're familiar with or have seen in past - even Cleric ones. Plus, they get a bunch of Genie-related abilities.

The downsides are that casting the spell takes time (what they really do is send their familiar off to find the spell on an Outer Plane, which may take from several rounds to several hours, depending on spell type), and there's a chance of all sorts of mishaps - from the familiar failing to find the spell to drawing the attention of something powerful and annoyed.

Mark Hall
2010-04-05, 01:15 PM
What? 2nd Edition, right? I could have sworn that each school only had one opposed school, and that Illusion's was Necromancy.

Depends on what you mean by "opposed schools" While the schools are traditionally represented on a ring, with their opposition school opposite them, they usually have another that their specialists can't cast.

Taelas
2010-04-05, 01:25 PM
That's absolutely true, but in perfect honesty, a blaster type wizard can be absolutely terrifying in AD&D since HP's are significantly more limited and saving throws still allow half the damage through and he'll still have access to a lot of the utility spells that make batmen batman.

There's nothing like a Web spell at low levels to make that onrushing horde of goblins look a lot more manageble. And at higher levels, it's a great tool for battlefield control and shaping since even more powerful foes may not want to spend a huge amount of effort wading through all those webs.

I completely agree. Spells like Fireball was far more effective in previous editions.

Evard
2010-04-05, 01:33 PM
I don't know much about the older D&D but what do you mean Illusion can duplicate any effect? Is it like shadow conjuration/evocation or something?

Taelas
2010-04-05, 01:52 PM
I don't know much about the older D&D but what do you mean Illusion can duplicate any effect? Is it like shadow conjuration/evocation or something?

There are spells for more than half of the spell levels (1st--phantasmal force, 2nd--improved phantasmal force, 3rd--spectral force, 5th--advanced illusion, 6th--permanent illusion and programmed illusion etc.) which can replicate "any object, creature, or force". They do so to different degrees and in different manners, of course.

Zombimode
2010-04-05, 02:02 PM
Yes, shadow evocation and summoning.



You only lose Abjuration and Necromancy, and there aren't really any stellar spells in either in core (except dispel magic, but that was later erratta'ed into a "universal" school anyway). Plus, you get to keep conjuration/summoning and Invocation/Evocation.

May I point you to Magic Jar? Its one of most absurdly powerful spells in AD&D 2e "core".
Animate dead is also really powerfull, so is Death Spell.

I am not aware of the errata for Dispel Magic, but if you're right, I would indeed make losing Abjuration less of an issue.
But it doesnt really makes sense what other spell is so iconic for abjuration if not Dispel Magic?

But nevertheless I agree with you, a Transmuter is one of the better choices for specialists. The transmuter (level 6) in my current campaign rocks too. I have yet to see an enemy to succeed on the save against slow.

lightningcat
2010-04-05, 04:46 PM
I completely agree. Spells like Fireball was far more effective in previous editions.

Oh so true. You don't have 10th level envokers killing dracolichs singlehand in the newer editions.
*Smiles at that memory*

Kurald Galain
2010-04-05, 05:05 PM
I don't know much about the older D&D but what do you mean Illusion can duplicate any effect? Is it like shadow conjuration/evocation or something?
Well, among others, 2E had the very appropriate but very nasty rule that "disbelief automatically forfeits a saving throw if the effect is real". So interspersing illusory fireballs with real ones can be devastating.

Slayn82
2010-04-05, 05:10 PM
In the 2nd Ed., subjects affected by an illusion interact with it as it were, for all intends and purposes, real, with the reservation that if the enemy isnt aware of the special capabilities of the subject, he isnt affected.

So, someone that never saw an basilisk and didnt knew they can petrify people would not be affected by the petrification, but claws would be fully effective.

If a wizard never saw a beholder, and tried to cast in the illusory beholder's anti - magic field, he would not be affected, but his chap fighter that knows beholders would act as all his magic items were inert.

Of course, the best way for an illusionist is give a proper introdution to his illusion, were the main object (like the basilisk above) affects a lesser part of the illusion (one poor unlucky dude is turned into stone). And voilá...

If someone is killed by the illusion, he must suceed a system shock roll, or simply his mind believes so much he is dead, that his body stops. On the other side, if he is still alive and perceives the illusion's nature, all the damage he suffered instantly disapears. Mindless things are immune to illusions.

Except when noted otherwise, illusions use the caster's THAC0.



But nevertheless I agree with you, a Transmuter is one of the better choices for specialists. The transmuter (level 6) in my current campaign rocks too. I have yet to see an enemy to succeed on the save against slow.

Yeah, that -4 to being resisted is nasty. Of course, the 4rth level spells include one worse, that if the subject SUCEEDS HIS SAVE, he is slowed.

Also, magic missiles is a necessity, some monsters are only affected by it, and its reasonably fast casting means it can be usefull taking out other spellcasters, by disrupting their concentration. Remember there isnt Concentration checks. Of course, Arcane's shield are around a lot of casters.