View Full Version : A Somewhat Embarassing e6 Question

Gnome Alone
2010-12-31, 04:40 PM
Hi all, I have a small problem that I was hoping someone could help me out with, regarding an e6 campaign I'm running. For anyone who does not know, it's D&D with a level cap of 6 ("Epic 6th") wherein most abilities above that level don't exist.

So, I ran the first adventure of the campaign, and rolled them up some treasure for some kobolds they killed, on the spot. Granted, I probably should've had it pre-generated, but I was in a hurry to get started, since one of the players had to leave pretty soon, and did not prepare nearly as well as I should have. (Caveat: it was also my first DMing ever.) Anyway, medium story short, I rolled the dice, my brother checked the chart over my shoulder and said, "Wow, can you even get a 9th level scroll in e6?" And I said, no, you can't, but felt bad, because by some slim chance they got some wicked loot, or should've, so I said, well, I think you can get 4th level spells somehow. Cuz I think I remember reading that you could in a few ways, on this forum. So I gave them a scroll of Phantasmal Killer.

So, my question is, can anyone help me out with a build of someone in e6 that COULD make such a scroll? I was thinking I'd try to make the best out of a tricky situation and decide that the scroll was made by some kobold necromancer or beguiler or something deep in the cavern the players are in. Y'know, I'll turn a slight screw up into the hook for a nice recurring villain. Any ideas?

2010-12-31, 04:46 PM
Artificer 6, by RAW.

If you're going by the spirit of E6, though, you'd limit access to 4th level spells or above. The players wouldn't generally be able to learn them, but there is precedent in the original E6 thread over at ENworld to create feats to give "reasonable" 4th level spells as 1/day spells. Basically, things that seem on par with 3rd level spells, like wall of fire or especially cone of cold.

For example, it isn't unreasonable to me for a wizard to gain Animate Dead as a feat. Clerics already have it, after all.

Things like Dimension anchor, lesser globe of invulnerability, dimension door, rainbow pattern, enervation or polymorph, though? No way. But then, that's my suggestion, and as I said before you need to use your own discretion in what to allow.

However, giving the players a scroll or something isn't such a big deal. Especially if you make something of it.

"This is no ordinary scroll, but some form of epic magic. You'll need it to fulfill your quest" or some-such.

4th level spells don't technically need to be impossible, but no player should be able to just cast them. You need something else. Like some sort of ritual (I'm stealing from 4th edition here) that requires time, or money, or special spell components the wizard won't have in his pouch. Or you'd need the aid of a dragon's preternatural magical skill. Or a group of necromancers, working together and aiding another, to fulfill the ritual to create a Mohrg or three to aid in their quest to dominate. (Effectively, they're just casting Create Undead, but hey, when level 6 is epic, a quest to stop someone from bringing forth several CR 8 monsters is a pretty good adventure.)

2010-12-31, 04:51 PM
One way to deal with this is to introduce Ritual Magic:

The basic idea is that higher level spells are available but take hours or days to cast and require expensive material components/foci and often many helper mages (this is a great motivation for the party wizard to found a mages' guild).

While this magic is often too powerful to be then transferred into scrolls without producing game balance issues, 4th-6th level spells could easily be accessible this way, and higher level spells could be available with caveats (ie, only 9/10s of the ritual was done, and a long casting time remains).

2010-12-31, 04:53 PM
E6 actually discusses granting access to 5th+ level spells through rituals and rites. Handing over a 9th level scroll is a disastrous idea in your standard E6 campaign, but if your players instead found the documented instructions to a powerful ritual it's a whole different story.

I totally empathize- so go with it! Give them the scroll, but it's not a "Scroll" as per standard rules. It's a complicated ritual that will require expensive material components, multiple participants, and a rare arcane foci to cause to function. Make the casting time 10+ minutes. You could even build a whole side quest out of this random find!

Edit: Damn you! Ninja'd by Bibliomancer. :smallsmile:

2010-12-31, 05:01 PM
This may not be of much help, but in the E6 game i'm running any magic item that would require a caster level greater than 6 is usually made by Dragons. Most players will never encounter any dragon with a caster level over 6 simply because there isn't many in the world. Dragons with caster levels over 6 are also beings of god-like power in this world, so the "it's made by dragons" excuse doesn't get used often. But still, it's a useful one to have.

2010-12-31, 05:18 PM
Actually, something great to keep in mind is a quote by E6's creator:

"When a spell is a 3-day event requiring 20 mages, itís more of a plot point than a spell itself, and that makes it a great a springboard for challenging the players."

I have to agree. The magic can be there, but it's a bit more interesting, at minimum.