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The Bandicoot
2013-02-15, 01:23 PM
Alright so first a bit of backstory....

The basic idea for my campaign world is that in regular D&D magic is held back by a sort've dam. Letting a steady, regulated flow of magical energy through, most of which is taken by the gods. The remaining provides for the wizards and sorcerers and such.

Now millennia ago this damn was shattered. During the the initial flood a lot of chaotic things happened. Magical diseases came into being that wiped out entire species of man and beast, races were uplifted, races were created, the the walls between the divine and the mortal became thinner and a few mortals rose to the ranks of gods.

Now though it's just a river that has widened a bit. So there's more magic but it goes through it's highs and lows just like a natural river.

Now I already have a few ideas of changes to make to the normal D&D 3.5 rules. Things like giving everyone minor magical abilities and making divine ascension a possibility, but I'm curious as to how you giantitp forum-goers would run such a world?

Doomchicken
2013-02-15, 05:05 PM
Hmmm... Maybe give everyone a 0-th level spell a day regardless of class to represent the huge amount of magic present in the world, and give several buffs to spellcasters, with maybe some added risks (mana overload could be a possibility).

Weirdlet
2013-02-15, 06:24 PM
Maybe have an institute or organization of watchers that can observe the natural ebbs and flows of magic into the world (or at least into the inhabited areas of the world) and who warn from 'upstream' when the tide's starting to surge, so that people can batten down for the magical 'storms' or floods that pour so much power into the world that things change and warp, or burn, or just go 'blip'. There's a Mercedes Lackey trilogy that might help with inspiration there (and several other books dealing with the aftermath), called Storm Warning, Storm Rising, and Storm Breaking. There was also a book called The Magicians and Mrs. Quent, which had an interesting conceit of having variable day and night cycles, called Luminals and Umbrals, and you'd get warning in the newspaper or the almanac about a long Umbral coming up so you'd better stock up on candles- that could be a thing.

Figure out how high-magic and low-magic times affect the world- what would the most effective time be to stage an assassination? What are the dangers of going outside a safe area during a magic storm, and what would drive someone to do that? Do people take well to the inevitable weirdness that comes of constant small changes that might physically change them or their crops, or is there a backlash?

The Bandicoot
2013-02-15, 08:57 PM
I was actually planning on letting the player choose a 0 level spell that they can cast 3/day ^_^.

I like that second idea. Maybe make a spell that allows someone to tell the magical weather. Higher magic might give the effect of one or more metamagic feats while having a higher chance of some negative wild-magic-esque backlash.

Doomchicken
2013-02-15, 09:09 PM
If you give everyone a 3/day 0 level spell then wizards will probably need a buff at early levels, otherwise they'd only have 1 more spell than the fighter of the party.

The Bandicoot
2013-02-15, 09:54 PM
If you give everyone a 3/day 0 level spell then wizards will probably need a buff at early levels, otherwise they'd only have 1 more spell than the fighter of the party.Except that the wizard would also have that 3/day 0 level spell extra.

Doomchicken
2013-02-15, 10:10 PM
Ah, I see. Would this bonus scale to levels at all?

FreakyCheeseMan
2013-02-15, 10:40 PM
Spellcasting through feats.

How little or how much a feat would buy would be up to you.

At most, you could let a feat buy a (Non-stacking) caster level in certain classes - maybe sorcerer, so they don't get access to too many spells.

At the low end, a feat buys a single spell as an SLA.

The Bandicoot
2013-02-16, 06:46 PM
Yeah the feat buying a caster level seems a bit much. The feat buying a spell seems fine though. Or maybe being able to cast certain spells with a sufficient spellcraft check.

The Bandicoot
2013-02-16, 09:14 PM
That's a pretty great idea ^_^ maybe make it a tad more vague though. As long as there's enough reasoning behind the choices you can have up to three spell levels 1/day. The max level of spell will be 1st but that means you could have 1 1st level spell 3/day, 6 0 level spells 1/day, and ect. ect.

Thanks for the idea! :smallbiggrin:

Saito Takuji
2013-02-17, 07:04 PM
some fairly simple stuff magic items costing less to buy, and make, mabey even made quicker.

for casting, mabey set up some way to reduce the increaced level for metamagicing a spell, but has a chance of a mana surge, some kind of saving throw, higher based off of the base level of the spell, as well as the ammount of extra spell levelse reduced. and if the save is failed some damage is taken, mabey some ability point damage to the main casting score, or something like that

The Bandicoot
2013-02-17, 07:48 PM
some fairly simple stuff magic items costing less to buy, and make, mabey even made quicker.

for casting, mabey set up some way to reduce the increaced level for metamagicing a spell, but has a chance of a mana surge, some kind of saving throw, higher based off of the base level of the spell, as well as the ammount of extra spell levelse reduced. and if the save is failed some damage is taken, mabey some ability point damage to the main casting score, or something like that

Good idea! Does a 25% reduction in xp and gold cost for magic items seem too much?

As far as the reduced metamagic.....maybe something like.... (spell level) x (level of metamagic being reduced) + (magical energy in the area) as a percentage to roll on a d100. If you get below that there's a chance the metamagic'd spell either backfires or gives you ability score damage equal to it's spell level.

Saito Takuji
2013-02-17, 11:25 PM
i dont recall offhand, but myself i would put it as a reduction in creation costs comperable to what an artificer gets when built for it, think it is 25%, could be wrong tho

The Bandicoot
2013-02-17, 11:57 PM
i dont recall offhand, but myself i would put it as a reduction in creation costs comperable to what an artificer gets when built for it, think it is 25%, could be wrong tho

From what I remember an Artificer got a pool of points that could be used in place of XP to create an item....

Ravanan
2013-02-18, 01:04 AM
My own setting is not high magic; however, because magic is just returning to an increasingly middle class world after being almost non-existent for some 500-600 years, it is an oddity for people not to pick up a little bit of magic simply because it is in vogue.

The way I am handling this is that everyone learns 4 0-level spells from any spell list, in any combination, and can cast them in any combination up to three times per day, as a sorcerer. (I should point out that I am playing Pathfinder, and so normal spellcasters would be using their own slots an unlimited number of times per day). For characters that choose to eschew this for backstory reasons, I give them a single extra trait.

In a truly high magic setting, I would also be adding some level of casting ability to even non-caster classes (I've personally used with a fair bit of success giving any non-caster an "effective spellcasting level" every fourth or fifth level, meaning that by level twenty, a fighter is going to be casting 3rd level cleric spells), accelerating growth for low- to medium- casters (rangers, pallys, bards), and giving full casters one of two options: An extra spell slot of each level, or a nice boost to their save DCs (basically choose to get quantity, or quality using the extra available magic).
On the other hand, with an increasing amount of magic in the world, exposure would increase and things resistant to magic would become even more resistant and things without resistance would start to develop it.

Most importantly is considering how society would develop around this. After millenia of extremely high magic, a world is likely to develop some form of magical electricity (automated streetlights in large cities), possibly airships or even floating cities; artisans are just as if not more likely to take levels in some sort of spellcasting class, because magic items are so much more prevalent. Basically, what technologies have they developed to exploit the increase in magic, and what have they developed to defend themselves from it?

Saito Takuji
2013-02-18, 08:46 PM
From what I remember an Artificer got a pool of points that could be used in place of XP to create an item....

ah must have been feats to lower that amount then

The Bandicoot
2013-02-20, 12:32 AM
The technology bit got me thinking. Though the first millennia or two was essentially the flood, everyone basically hunkered down,fought back against the changes, and rebuilt. So I see this as sort've at the beginning or middle of the magical-industrial-revolution.

Besides that, I might give non-spellcasters a level of adept spellcasting every 4 levels. What would you reccomend I give spellcasters to help balance this and give them a slight boost?
Also, I want to give people who don't like spellcasting another option. Maybe a bonus feat every four levels instead of the spellcasting?

Ravanan
2013-02-20, 02:07 AM
A bonus feat is very little compared to spell casting ability in most cases. What you might do though to compensate those that do not take any sort of spellcasting bonus is give them a +1 to saves against spells & spell-like abilities at 1st level, and then levels divisible by 5, capping at +5 to the saves at L20. In other words, rather than taking the path of exploiting the increase in magic, they developed a greater resistance to it. Spellcasting ability or an awesome save bonus is a hard choice in my mind.

As for what spellcasters get, you might just give them a bonus spell slot at the same time they would otherwise get their second spell slot of a given spell level. One extra spell per day per spell level vs getting decent spellcasting ability vs massive saves bonus against magic. If the extra spell per spell level is too much, give them a bonus spell slot of their highest level castable at the time at 4th, 8th, 12th, and 16th. This will net an extra 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 8th level spell slot.

Omnicrat
2013-02-20, 02:11 AM
It was you here. Did you just change your avatar or something?

If you want industrial-magical revolution, you should really look into gramarie (link at end of post). It's basically the industrial-magical revolution in class form. By level 20 your pretty much a god with regard to the impact you can have in the world. More than a god, using Frozen Feet's divinity.

As for magic, giving everyone some type of spontaneous casting probably works best. If you are saying some areas are more magical than others, this extra innate casting should be affected by the magic level. In low (relatively?) magic areas no extra innate casting, in low-moderate a few level zero spells, in moderate sporadic casting levels of adept, in high-moderate sporadic sorcerer casting, and in high areas just strait-up casting as a sorcerer of equal character level.

For the people who don't want casting, maybe a few souls, rather than filling with the magic around them, become more resistant/repellant to magic the more saturated in it they are? This may affect their easy ascension ability.

Also, may I say that I wish I could play in this game. It sounds awesome. :smallbiggrin:

http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=252794

The Bandicoot
2013-02-20, 11:50 AM
If people want to help me write it out and get everything organized I'd be more than willing to start up a game here on giantitp using the modified rules. As it is right now though I have at most a month or two before the game I'm currently in ends and the players start writing up their characters for my campaign.

As for the level of innate spellcasting being changed by the different magical areas, I'm wary about making things TOO complicated. I mean I want this stuff to be able to be picked up relatively easily.

And no, I didn't change my avatar. Sexy Alot is here to stay for a while :P

Synovia
2013-02-20, 11:54 AM
Hmmm... Maybe give everyone a 0-th level spell a day regardless of class to represent the huge amount of magic present in the world, and give several buffs to spellcasters, with maybe some added risks (mana overload could be a possibility).

Get rid of non-casting classes all together. People without magic would have basically been bred out.

The Bandicoot
2013-02-20, 11:59 AM
Keep in mind that I still want this to be D&D at its core. If I wanted to to crazy I'd go play Exalted. I still want all the classes to be available and be at their same spot on the tiers.

Omnicrat
2013-02-20, 12:04 PM
I'm more than happy to help. The bonus spell stuff could be pre-prepaired by you or something, so you just hand a little sheet to them with what they can now do in this area (for PbP just have a reference sheet for everyone posted). If you want something more standardized, you could give the option of a level of sorcerer casting every time you normally get a feat (not bonus feats), or 5 points SR?

What else do you need help with?

Edit: did you look at gramarie? If you don't want players to have that much power, you could use it as an npc class.

The Bandicoot
2013-02-20, 12:36 PM
I don't think I'll allow the gramarie.

I think all I really need help with is polishing up the whole magical weather/reduced metamagic/backlash chance thing.

Besides that I was thinking of loosening restrictions on spells a bit(like allowing permenancy to be cast on more spells) but I think I'll do that on a case-to-case basis.

Omnicrat
2013-02-20, 12:54 PM
I don't think I'll allow the gramarie.

I think all I really need help with is polishing up the whole magical weather/reduced metamagic/backlash chance thing.

Besides that I was thinking of loosening restrictions on spells a bit(like allowing permenancy to be cast on more spells) but I think I'll do that on a case-to-case basis.

Its your game. Though I should reiterate, even if you only use one or two principles, gramarie makes a great DM tool for advanced magical societies.

You could always use BoVD weather. Some ideas of magic surges could be all spells get certain metamagic effects with no level increase. Everyone in the eldrich rain gets prestidigitation as an at-will spell like ability for 24 hours. Every once it a while, it rains positive and/or negative energy, giving the effect of a cure/inflict spell once per round to every creature in the rain. Occasionally it rains spells.

For wild magic, you could just use what happens in plains of wild magic.

You could also take out the xp costs for certain (all?) spells and magic items due to the high level of magic.

The Bandicoot
2013-02-20, 02:27 PM
Its your game. Though I should reiterate, even if you only use one or two principles, gramarie makes a great DM tool for advanced magical societies.

You could always use BoVD weather. Some ideas of magic surges could be all spells get certain metamagic effects with no level increase. Everyone in the eldrich rain gets prestidigitation as an at-will spell like ability for 24 hours. Every once it a while, it rains positive and/or negative energy, giving the effect of a cure/inflict spell once per round to every creature in the rain. Occasionally it rains spells.

For wild magic, you could just use what happens in plains of wild magic.

You could also take out the xp costs for certain (all?) spells and magic items due to the high level of magic.
I was thinking as far as magic items go the gold cost are 25% less. If this drops the price below 1000 gold the XP cost is waved for creating it. Any XP costs for spells is reduced by 25%.

and I'm sorry I didn't specify. By magical weather I actually meant how wide the "river" is basically. I didn't mean literal weather. I imagine it could be a simple table with a percentile die being used to say how wide the "river" is. The wider it is the more bonuses are given out but the more dangerous it is. So while at 90% you'd get a few different metamagics for free, there would be a higher chance of having a backlash in the form of a roll on the minor or major Wild Surge table.

That would have to at least partly be done by someone else because I'll be extremely busy due to real-life things for the next few days. I'd be extremely grateful to anyone who could at least get it started so I have a base to work off of and finish when I can.

Omnicrat
2013-02-20, 02:32 PM
With regard to my literal magic weather, why wouldn't that happen where the river is wide?

The Bandicoot
2013-02-20, 02:56 PM
It just adds another thing to keep track of and another table for me to write up. If you want to pound out a few effects and put them on a weather table feel free, I might use it, but it's not something I'm going to spend time on.

JusticeZero
2013-02-20, 06:01 PM
the fact of the matter is that DnD is ALREADY a very high magic world. The things I would do to make it look like there's a lot of magic would be to emphasize the downsides of magic more - after all, having "too much" magic is not always happiness and light.

Sorcerers have inherent magic... there are a LOT of sorcerers around, and they get themselves and their neighbors killed with their power incontinence pretty often.
Wizard spells are hard to cast - not because it's hard to gather magic, but because they have to work harder to weaken and control it! The original Dungeon Master CRPG had this in the background - the entire system of runic magic in the game wasnt there to make magic easy to cast, the system was there as a surge protector to keep wizards from blowing themselves up by trying to channel magic energy directly.
Magic misfires are a thing, and they dont make magic fizzle, they make it backfire in a big way.
Throw lots of abberations around. Lots of birth defect and mutations of the tragic variety.