View Full Version : D&D 3.x Other Methodology: Compartmentalized Spellcasting

2015-07-09, 10:33 PM
Okay, first I will say that this concept is inspired by several somewhat obscure 3rd Party resources, some of which are no longer available on the net, so I will honestly be keeping references to such resources to a minimum within the text and just describe the individual aspects. There will be a spoiler at the bottom that has the resources listed for anyone that wants to look into them.

This is not a complete project, not by any means, it is simply a system that came to mind when making a class I've been working on recently and am making specifically for that class. However, this has become a bit of a pet project of mine, above all others, and will be improved upon and expanded as I work on it to create a viable magic system that will be useable and is, hopefully, tier 3 on its own, even with its most powerful combinations.

Any help I could get on this project would be much appreciated and would aid the completion of the project greatly, I hope to at least drum up some interest as time goes on and may even see about publishing the system should I ever complete it.

The class I originally wanted to design this system for won't be posted here because it's based on another 3rd Party system that is extremely obscure and likely won't be understood if put up here unless you have the book it's based on, but I hope to post at least three classes here to use this system.

Methodology is a system of magic based on the fact that spells are complex ritualized processes combined in a way that produces their effects, the practitioners having broken down these processes into their simplest, usable component parts. By doing so, the practitioners developed the ability to create complex spells, able to balance power with versatility or to focus on one or the other and developing a style of casting all their own.

Methodology relies on ambient magic, rather than the internalized magic commonly used by arcane casters or the granted power of divine spellcasters. This comes with its own pros and cons, such as being able to be used even in antimagic fields, the ability to accidentally drain an area of ambient magic, leaving the practitioner unable to cast further processes, or the fact that processes must be prepared and combined into Methods ahead of time.

Processes: The base components of Methodology, Processes are weak magical effects that can be fitted together to create more complex and powerful effects. On their own, a Process is only slightly more powerful than a cantrip, though some are useless without being linked to another Process (such as the Concentration Process which increases the effects of another Process).

Methods: When Processes are combined, the resulting "spell" is referred to as a Method, or Methodological Spell for the more technically oriented. Methods do not have a level, instead being limited by the practitioner's capacity and sparks.

Capacity: A practitioner of Methodological Casting has a capacity for Processes they may have prepared into Methods. This has no effect on the number of methods the practitioner may have prepared, only the number of Processes that may be combined at once into their Methods (a practitioner with a capacity of 7 can have a single method made up of seven Processes , a method composed of three Processes and another of four Processes , two methods composed of two Processes and one composed of three Processes, or any other combination that equals out to 7 Processes).

Sparks: Sparks are a unit to measure the amount of ambient magic that the practitioner has available to fuel their methods and regenerate over time as magic flows in to fill the void from using methods. A practitioner has a the ability to draw on only so much at a time, and should they draw on this reserve too much, either on purpose or by accident, they run the risk of Tapping Out.

Tapping Out: When a practitioner of Methodology Taps Out, they've depleted the area of ambient magic and created a temporary dead magic zone around themselves that impedes the flow of ambient magic. Until this dead magic zone dissipates, the practitioner's ability to gain sparks is reduced.

Methodic Level: The methodology equivalent of caster level or manifester level.

Overcharge: A skill that allows a practitioner of Methodology to enhance the effects of their Methods and Processes temporarily by spending additional sparks.

Runes: A written version of a Process, similar to a scroll, these can be applied to items to tie the Process to the item or linked with other runes to create Methods of their own as a physical item (essentially the basis of magic item crafting for the system).

Clock & Steam by Rodney Thompson of the Blackmoor Campaign Setting
DragonMech Campaign Setting by Joseph Goodman
Tome of Channeling by Robert van der Meer and Dreamscarred Press

2015-07-09, 10:34 PM
Process Description (to be Expanded)
NAME: Simply the name of the Process.

DESCRIPTORS: A way of describing the Process and how it interacts with certain effects.

COMPONENTS: Aspects of the Process akin to spell components (such as verbal and somatic). Components can be further split based on their complexity in the form of a DC.

CRAFTING TIME: The time it takes to compose the process into a Method. The Crafting Time of each Process is added together to determine the time it takes to craft the method. Once composed into a Method, no further time is needed to use the method outside of its casting time.

CASTING TIME: The time it takes to cast a Process on its own. A separate number in parentheses (called a Time Rating) is used to determine the casting time of the Method.

RANGE: The range at which the Process can be used. This also affects the range of the Method.

AIMING A METHOD: As Aiming A Spell.

DURATION: How long the effect of a Process lasts. A (D) after the duration means it can be dismissed ahead of time as a free action.

SAVING THROW: What saving throw can be used to counter a Process and what success results in.

RESISTANCE: Does spell/power resistance affect the Method?

SPARK COST: The number of sparks a Process costs. Most processes have a cost between .5 and 2. These costs are added together to determine the cost of a Method (round down).

OVERCHARGE: Can the Process be Overcharged?

Descriptors: Earth
Components: None
Crafting Time: 5 Rounds
Casting Time: Move Action (2)
Range: Touch
Target: Touched Object
Duration: 1 Round/Level (D)
Saving Throw: Fort Negates (Harmless)
Resistance: No
Spark Cost: .5
Overcharge: Yes


2015-07-09, 10:36 PM
***Reserved for Processes (Cont.)***

2015-07-09, 10:37 PM
***Reserved for Example Methods***

2015-07-09, 10:38 PM
***Reserved For Classes & Feats***

2015-07-09, 10:39 PM
***Reserved for Classes & Feats (Cont.)***

Okay, people can post now.