2007-07-31, 09:59 PM (ISO 8601)
Bugbear in the Playground
Re: Break Enchantment against Freeblemind
Not exactly an apt example, since everyone knows philips head screwdrivers don't work on flathead screws. It was designed not to work, in fact. Philips head screws were created because of the problems flathead screws have with slippage, and philips head screws align themselves better as they are driven in. So this would be an appropriate example if Feeblemind was explicitly stated not to work with Break Enchantment. However this is not the case.
Originally Posted by Overlard
Since Break Enchantment effects all enchantments (level 5 or lower) I think a more apt example would be to ask if a multitool would work on a flathead screw. It's not a flathead screwdriver specifically, but it was designed to cover many different situations wherein you might need to turn a screw. Very few instructions will include a multitool as a suggested solution, because it's generally best to have the right tool. Wish, Limited Wish, Heal, and Miracle are the "right" tools. They work instantly and automatically. Break Enchantment is a multitool. It's not 100% guaranteed to work the first time, but it's functional enough and less expensive than a collection of screwdrivers of all possible sizes.
Just because something is not on the list doesn't mean it won't work. It also doesn't mean it will. BE still needs a caster level check, after all.
If you need a D&D example, Shield is generally accepted to block Magic Missile. Why? Because it says so in Shields description. If you wanted to insist, you could pull the quote out of Magic Missiles description that says "Magic Missile strikes unerringly." However, Shield is a spell whose only utility is defense. If it could not block magic missiles a large part of it's functionaity would be gone. If you allow magic missile to be absorbed harmlessly by shield it doesn't significantly reduce the spells effectiveness. Not everyone will have shields up all the time, after all. So in this case defense trumps offense.
Feeblemind versus Break Enchantment is a similiar situation. The fewer spells Break Enchantment can effect the dramatically less useful a spell it is. Conversely, Feeblemind is not especially reduced in effectiveness if BE lifts it. There will always be utility in a spell that halts wizards in their tracks, as not everyone has a BE spell handy at all times.
Allowing Feeblemind to be lifted by BE actually solves a major balance issue: No one will want to play an Int 1 character for several levels, or have to stop an adventure to go back to the nearest metropolis to pay some NPC for a cure. So I'm going to have to say that it just makes sense from a larger perspective, regardless of debatable semantics.
Last edited by Tokiko Mima; 2007-07-31 at 10:07 PM.