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    Halfling in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    I have returned, and This time with a remake of my Black Mage. Since Thread Necromancy is forbidden, Here is the link to my old Black Mage. Old Black Mage

    BLACK MAGE
    A few unintelligible words and fleeting gestures can bring devastation when they are the words and gestures of a black mage. Black mages never fully control their extensive power, but use it with great conviction and devotion. Black mages are rarely seen studying or examining tomes. For a black mage, magic is not so much a talent, as it refined and powerful art.
    Adventures: Black Mages adventure for many reasons, but most adventure seeking greater magical power. Most black mages that are found adventuring are usually seeking money or are seeking powerful magical spells. They rarely conduct their adventures with caution and forethought. When prepared, they can use their spells to devastating effect.
    Characteristics: The headaches of the arcane world, the Black Mages are an order known equally for their desire, need, and love of raw magical power, as well as their lack of restraint. While not necessarily evil, it is true that there are very few lines that a black mage won’t cross. The driving force behind a Black Mage’s personality is his curiosity. They are fascinated by all forms of magic, and will go to just about any length to make the latest discovery. Anyone who knows a Black Mage also understands that when they say “Oooops.”, or “Ooooo! That’s neat!” you had better run for the hills….and pray you make it.
    Most mages train at the Black Citadel, the main school for those wishing to enter the ranks of the Black Mages. During the few years at this institution, a potential mage learns the ins and outs of the essence of, the use of, and the execution of magic. It is not unheard of for the training to take place in different dimensions, so as to not mistakenly cause too much destruction to the world. Even through this extensive training, a Black mage doesn’t fully learn how to control this power, causing his abilities to become somewhat unpredictable.
    Alignment: Overall, black mages show a great tendency toward chaos because of their fascination with destruction and devistation.
    Background: Black mages first appeared in the early years of magic when wizards and sorcerers first desired to use magic for complete destruction. They learned that evocation and conjuration magic was best suited for this type of destruction. Within a few years these first black mages were hunted to stop their terror. Eventually some Lords and kings began to seek their power for war, leading to a gathering of some of these Mages. They began to realize that their power could be sold and even more so, be used to rule. So the Black Citadel was founded to train those who also wanted to use such power. Now those in charge try to regulate the power to make sure that their power isn’t used too recklessly.
    Races: Many races follow the way of a black mage, but the most common are humans. Elves rarely become Black Mages due to their desire to be one with magic. Gnomes tend to prefer the versatility of other schools of magic.
    Races: Humans take to magic for any of various reasons: curiosity, ambition, lust for power, or just personal inclination. Human wizards tend to be practical innovators, creating new spells or using old spells creatively. Elves are enthralled by magic, and many of them become wizards for love of the art rather than its destructive power. Gnomes tend to favor the school of illusion rather than destruction that is the staple of a Black mage.

    GAME RULE INFORMATION
    Black Mages have the following game statistics.
    Abilities: Intelligence determines how powerful a spell a Black Mage can cast, how many spells he can cast per day, and how hard those spells are to resist (see Spells, below). A high Dexterity score is helpful for a black mage, who typically wears little or no armor, because it provides him with a bonus to Armor Class. A good Constitution score gives a black mage extra hit points, a resource that he is otherwise very low on.
    Alignment: Any. (Most are chaotic)
    Hit Die: d4.

    Class Skills
    The Black Wizard’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Bluff (Cha), Concentration (Con), Craft (int), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (arcane) (int), Knowledge (the planes) (int), Profession (Wis), and Spellcraft (Int).
    Skill Points per Level: 2 + Int modifier.
    Skill Points at 1st level: (2 + Int Mod) * 4.

    CLASS FEATURES
    All of the following are class features for the Black Mage Class.
    Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Black Mages are proficient with the club, dagger, heavy crossbow, light crossbow, and quarterstaff, but not with any type of armor or shield. Armor of any type interferes with a black mage’s movements, which can cause his spells with somatic components to fail.
    Spells: A black mage casts arcane spells (the same type of spells available to wizards, sorcerers, and bards), which are drawn from the sorcerer/wizard spell list (page 192 PHB). He can cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time, the way a wizard or a cleric must (see below). He can however choose to prepare a spell before hand to apply metamagic feats without having to increase the casting time.
    To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, the black mage must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a black mage’s spell is 10 + Spell level + the black mage’s Intelligence modifier + Unpredictable bonus (see below) or penalty to caster level.
    Like other spellcasters, a black mage can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily spell allotment is given on Table: The Black Mage. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Intelligence score.
    Like a wizard, a black mage may know any number of spells (provided they are of the Conjuration and Evocation schools). He must get a good night’s sleep and spending 1 hour studying his spellbook in order to cast any of his spells. While studying, the black mage decides which spells to prepare ahead of time, if any.
    Bonus Languages: A black mage may substitute Draconic for one of the bonus languages available to the character because of her race. Many ancient tomes of magic are written in Draconic, and apprentice black mages learn it as part of their studies.
    Spellbooks: A black mage must study his spellbook each day in order to use his spells. He need not prepare ahead of time like a wizard, but he also cannot use any spell not recorded in his spellbook, except for read magic, which all black mages can prepare from memory.
    A black mage begins play with a spellbook containing all 0-level black mage spells plus two 1st-level spells of your choice. For each point of Intelligence bonus the black mage has, the spellbook holds one additional 1st-level spell of your choice. At each new black mage level, he gains three new spells of any spell level or levels that he can cast (based on his new black mage level) for his spellbook. These new spells must be from the evocation and/or conjuration schools.
    Black Magic: Black Magic is a focus on destruction and damage spells, usually by control of elements. A Black Mage begins play knowing only spells from the evocation and conjuration schools. Since this specialization is near absolute the black mage gains a +2 bonus on Spellcraft checks to learn the spells of the conjuration and evocation schools.
    Spells of the any other schools (other than Universal) are not available to the black mage, and he can’t even cast such spells from scrolls or fire them from wands. He may not change this specialization later. The exception to this is if he chooses the Non-black magic study Arcane Ability.
    Spell Thematics: At 1st level, a black mage has learns how to fine tune his spells to his own persona. He gains Spell Thematics as a bonus feat even if he does not meet the requirements.
    Bonus Feats: At 6th, 12th, and 18th level, a black mage gains a bonus feat. At each such opportunity, he can choose a metamagic feat, an item creation feat, or Spell Mastery. The black mage must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including caster level minimums. These bonus feats are in addition to the feat that a character of any class gets every three. The black mage is not limited to the categories of item creation feats, metamagic feats, or Spell Mastery when choosing these feats.
    Unpredictable (1d4, 1d6, 1d8): A Black mages power is so unrefined, even with the years of training they receive, that their power is unpredictable. As his power grows, so does that unpredictability.
    From 5th level on, a black mage permanently reduces his caster level by 2 for all spells that he casts. However, every time he casts a spell, he rolls 1d4 and adds the result to his caster level. For example, a 5th level black mage would cast his spells at a base caster level of 3, not 5. However, his actual caster level would vary from 4 to 7.
    At 11th level, his unpredictability also increases. He permanently reduces his caster level by 3 for all spells that he casts. He now rolls a 1d6 and adds the result to his caster level. For example, an 11th level black mage would cast his spells at a base caster level of 8, not 11. However, his actual caster level would vary from 9 to 14.
    At 17th level, a black mage is even more unpredictable. He reduces his caster level by 4 and now rolls a 1d8 and adds the result to his caster level. For example, a 17th level black mage would cast his spells at a base caster level of 13, not 17. However, his actual caster level would vary from 14 to 21.
    Ooops Factor:
    BackFire: Every time the black mage attempts to cast a spell, there is a chance that it will backfire. Roll a d20 everytime you cast a spell, on a critical failure, (a roll of 1 on a d20), the spell itself explodes into an ball of raw magical energy dealing 1d4 damage per (modified) caster level to everything (including the black mage) within close range, centered on the caster. Also everyone except the black mage is forced to the edge of the blast (no save). The Black mage is knocked prone. The Black Mage cannot willingly fail the roll. Everyone caught within the blast, except for the Black Mage, makes a Ref Save DC 10 + (modified) caster level for half damage. The spell is wasted and the black mage may not cast spells for 1 round /spell level.
    Overload: Every black mage is known for their great power. On a roll of 20 for the Ooops Facter roll, a Black Mage overloads the spell. His Caster level becomes maxed and the spell is treated as if it was empowered (if already empowered, then it is affected as if it were maximized). The black mage however cannot cast spells on the next round.

    NOTE:
    * All spells that have caster level variables with maximums are not increased past this maximum regardless of his Unpredictable caster level.
    * Also Spells cast from a scroll or other magic device are not affected by his Unpredictable ability. It is however, applied to all items he makes.
    * If the Black Mage attempts to creates a magic item or scroll, He must still roll the ooops factor roll. If he fumbles, the item is made, but every time (if multiple uses) it is used, it activates the Backfire ability (Including the inability to cast spells for x rounds).
    * If the Black Mage attempts to creates a magic item or scroll and rolls a 20, The item is created and every time it is used (if multiple uses) it is affected by the overload ability (Including the inability to cast spells for x rounds).

    Arcane Ability: On attaining 5th level, and at every five levels thereafter (10th, 15th and 20th), a black mage gains an arcane ability of his choice from among the following options
    Bonus Feat: A black mage may gain a bonus feat (PCs choice) in place of an arcane ability. This can only be taken once
    Non Black Magic Study: The Black Mage may choose a different school of spells from which he may learn spells. When choosing this ability, you do not obtain any spells from the new school nor any of the bonuses of school specialization.
    Prerequisites: Must spend one month studying the school from a specialist wizard of that school. This can only be taken once.
    Evasion (Ex): Black Mages who don't learn to dodge explosions, nameless things from other worlds, strange eldritch magics, mage-killers, and point-blank crossbow bolts to the head fired by upset villagers, don't last very long. A black mage can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If he makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save (such as a red dragon’s fiery breath or a fireball), he instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the black mage is wearing no armor. A helpless black mage (such as one who is unconscious or paralyzed) does not gain the benefit of evasion.
    Prerequisites: Level 10
    Provoked Casting: The Black Mage is easier to provoke than most people. When provoked, the black mage becomes focused on the provoker. The black mage gains a +4 concentration check to cast a spell, the DC for that spell increases by 2, and the black mage’s AC is decreased by 2. While in this state, the black mage is not affected by his unpredictable ability since his focus is increased. This lasts for 1d4+ 1/(previous angry casting that day) rounds, or until the provoker is killed, flees, or verbally acknowledges his power, whichever comes first. The provoked casting begins on the round immediately following the provocation. The bonuses and penalties stack with any other bonus or penalty. This ability may only be taken once.
    Special: When in this state, a black mage becomes focused on the creature that provoked or challenged his power. He may only attack that single creature.
    Familiar: A black mage can obtain a familiar. This ability is exactly like the wizard ability of the same name. A character with more than one class that grants a familiar may have only one familiar at a time
    Black Magic Counter: When counterspelling, you may use an evocation or conjuration spell that is one or more spell levels higher than the target spell.
    Normal: Without this ability, you may counter a spell only with the same spell, with a spell specifically designated as countering the target spell, or with one of the same school. Also, his Unpredictable caster level still applies.
    Prerequisites: Improved Counterspell.
    Improved Black Magic: The Black Mage gains the benefit of Spell focus for all schools of magic he knows. This only applies to spells learned as a Black Mage.
    Prerequisites: Spell Focus
    Greater Black Magic: The Black Mage gains the benefit of Greater Spell focus for all schools of magic he knows. This only applies to spells learned as a Black Mage.
    Prerequisites: Spell Focus, Greater Spell Focus, Improved Black Magic

    Table: Black Mage
    Code:
    	Base 					
    	Attack	Fort	Ref	Will		
    Level	Bonus	Save	Save	Save	Special			Unpredictable
    1st	+0	0	0	2	Black Magic, Ooops Factor
    					Spell Thematics		-
    2nd	+1	0	0	3				-
    3rd	+1	1	1	3	 			-
    4th	+2	1	1	4				-
    5th	+2	1	1	4	Arcane ability
    					Unpredictable		–2cl +1d4
    6th	+3	2	2	5	Bonus feat		–2cl +1d4
    7th	+3	2	2	5	 			–2cl +1d4
    8th	+4	2	2	6				–2cl +1d4
    9th	+4	3	3	6	 			–2cl +1d4
    10th	+5	3	3	7	Arcane ability		–2cl +1d4
    11th	+5	3	3	7	Bonus feat		–3cl +1d6
    12th	+6/+1	4	4	8				–3cl +1d6
    13th	+6/+1	4	4	8	 			–3cl +1d6
    14th	+7/+2	4	4	9				–3cl +1d6
    15th	+7/+2	5	5	9	Arcane ability		–3cl +1d6
    16th	+8/+3	5	5	10	Bonus feat		–3cl +1d6
    17th	+8/+3	5	5	10	 			–4cl +1d8
    18th	+9/+4	6	6	11				–4cl +1d8
    19th	+9/+4	6	6	11	 			–4cl +1d8
    20th	+10/+5	6	6	12	Arcane ability		–4cl +1d8
    Spells per Day
    Code:
    Level
    	0	1	2	3	4	5	6	7	8	9
    1	5	3	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	-
    2	6	4	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	-
    3	6	4	3	-	-	-	-	-	-	-
    4	6	4	4	-	-	-	-	-	-	-
    5	6	5	4	3	-	-	-	-	-	-
    6	6	5	5	4	-	-	-	-	-	-
    7	6	5	5	4	3	-	-	-	-	-
    8	6	6	5	5	4	-	-	-	-	-
    9	6	6	6	5	4	3	-	-	-	-
    10	6	6	6	5	5	4	-	-	-	-
    11	6	6	6	6	5	4	3	-	-	-
    12	6	6	6	6	5	5	4	-	-	-
    13	6	6	6	6	6	5	4	3	-	-
    14	6	6	6	6	6	5	5	4	-	-
    15	6	6	6	6	6	6	5	4	3	-
    16	6	6	6	6	6	6	5	5	4	-
    17	6	6	6	6	6	6	6	5	4	3
    18	6	6	6	6	6	6	6	5	5	4
    19	6	6	6	6	6	6	6	6	5	4
    20	6	6	6	6	6	6	6	6	5	5
    New Feats
    FOCUS [METAMAGIC]
    You are able to focus your energy better allowing greater power with your spells
    Benefit: You can spend a full round action that provokes an attack of opportunity to focus your powers. A concentration check DC 15 + Spell Level may be made to avoid an Attack of Opportunity (The Combat Casting feat applies to this roll). This allows you to reroll your Unpredictable roll for a number of rounds equal to you’re your unpredictable die. You must take the result of the second roll, even it if is worse.
    Normal: Without this feat, you cannot reroll your unpredictable roll.
    Prerequisite: Unpredictable 1d4, Spell Focus (any school)

    GREATER FOCUS [METAMAGIC]
    You are extremely adept at focusing your energy allowing you to greatly increase your spells.
    Benifit: After becoming focused, a black mage may spend a second full round action (anytime during his focused state) to greater focus his powers. He must still make a concentration check DC 15 + spell level to avoid an Attack of Opportunity. The black mage can further alter the results of your unpredictability for the next 4 rounds. This allows you to reroll your Unpredictable roll and take the better of the two rolls during all remaining focused rounds.
    Normal: Without this feat, you cannot reroll and choose your unpredictable roll.
    Prerequisites: Unpredictable 1d6, Focus, Spell Focus (any school)
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    Yora's Avatar

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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    Under "Spells" it says they can cast any spell they know and don't have to prepare them, but later in the same section it says how they prepare spells.
    We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on very tall tower of other dwarves.

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    Halfling in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    Under "Spells" it says they can cast any spell they know and don't have to prepare them, but later in the same section it says how they prepare spells.
    Ok. What it means is, That a Black mage has a spellbook. Like a wizard. All his spells are there, and he must study it for one hour (basically ok i have theses spells and this is how i cast them). But he doesnt need to 'prepare' any. unless he wants to prepare metamagic ones.

    Basically he casts like a sorcerer, but studies like a wizard. If that makes sense.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    So a Black Mage needs to prepare his spells, but prepares all spells at the same time?
    It's been a bit, GitP. If you're reading this, you're either digging through old stuff, or I've posted for the first time in forever.

    If you want to stay in touch, reach out to me on twitter (same username).

    The best answer is always to ask your DM.
    Unless you're the DM, in which case you should talk to your players.

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    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    No. A Black mage needs to have a spellbook so he knows which spells he CAN cast. But he doesnt need to prepare them like a wizard. He can however prepare metamagic spells like a sorcerer to reduce the casting time.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    So the black mage can prepare spells like a wizard (upon learning new spells; this does not require 'study' for every new day) but cast spontaneously like a sorceror (recovers spells after 8 hours rest as a sorceror, etc.)?

    Definitely something new. Awesome.
    Last edited by imp_fireball; 2009-07-01 at 07:57 PM.

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    Halfling in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    if i'm reading that right, close. He has a spellbook that he puts all his spells into. If it isnt in the book, he cannot cast it. He can choose to cast any spell he knows at anytime provided he has enough spells per day remaining.

    Timeline:
    night - 8 hours rest
    morning - 1 hour study of spellbook (no preparing Unless for metamagic)
    day - cast any spell known, like sorcerer.

    hope that answers it. but aside from this issue, how is the rest of the class?
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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    If you took the feat Practiced Spellcaster (+4 CL, up to your HD maximum), what would happen?

    Also, spontaneously casting from 3 schools of magic, even if one is evocation, is too damn powerful.

    Look at the Beguiler, Dread Necromancer, or Warmage for how to do it.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    if i'm reading that right, close. He has a spellbook that he puts all his spells into. If it isnt in the book, he cannot cast it. He can choose to cast any spell he knows at anytime provided he has enough spells per day remaining.
    So not only am I close, but I'm right. Because now you're just repeating what I said.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    Nice class. Great way to make your character feel ridiculously powerful without being overpowered.

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    Halfling in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    Quote Originally Posted by Myrmex View Post
    If you took the feat Practiced Spellcaster (+4 CL, up to your HD maximum), what would happen?
    You would still suffer the unpredictable penalty and bonus.

    Example: Black Mage 5/Fighter 4. your CL would be of a Black Mage 9. You would also gain the unpredictability of a BM of 4 levels higher.

    Will Edit class to make note of this.
    Quote Originally Posted by Myrmex View Post
    Also, spontaneously casting from 3 schools of magic, even if one is evocation, is too damn powerful.

    Look at the Beguiler, Dread Necromancer, or Warmage for how to do it.
    How is it overpowered? A sorcerer can do that too. provided you choose the right spells. Also, the penalties suffered help to offset this 'powerfulness'. I mean, the last thing you want is to blow yourself up. Especially since it deals 1d4 damage per CASTER LEVEL (after unpredictable.) So the black mage is gonna be hurting if he fails.

    Quote Originally Posted by imp_fireball View Post
    So not only am I close, but I'm right. Because now you're just repeating what I said.
    well then, glad were all on the same page.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    Black Mage 5/Fighter 4
    Sword swinging, teleporting, fireball shooter, with armored casting and improved toughness? Spider-man versus that. Who wins?
    Last edited by imp_fireball; 2009-07-03 at 07:45 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Black Mage Base Class (Peach)

    Quote Originally Posted by deshrimp View Post
    You would still suffer the unpredictable penalty and bonus.

    Example: Black Mage 5/Fighter 4. your CL would be of a Black Mage 9. You would also gain the unpredictability of a BM of 4 levels higher.
    I believe he meant without multiclassing: what does a BM 5 with Practiced Spellcaster do? Either Practiced Spellcaster applies before Unpredictable, and the ability just becomes a +1d4 caster level, or it applies last, and is useless.

    How is it overpowered? A sorcerer can do that too. provided you choose the right spells. Also, the penalties suffered help to offset this 'powerfulness'. I mean, the last thing you want is to blow yourself up. Especially since it deals 1d4 damage per CASTER LEVEL (after unpredictable.) So the black mage is gonna be hurting if he fails.
    The point is that you have no limit on spells known other than having to get them in your book, which is very inexpensive. A Black Mage can learn all the conjuration spells (essentially the most powerful school), and cast all of them spontaneously. All of the best battlefield control, direct damage, summoning, teleportation, and even some save or die, spontaneously, with no limit on spells known. The sorcerer can't come close to that, nor can the Warmage, Beguiler, or Dread Necromancer, because they have specific lists of spells known (which cap at around 10-14 spells per level, less at higher levels).

    As for the balancing factor of Unpredictable, it's really not. All it means is you'll blow through a bit more healing than usual, and every once in a while you'll get a "critical hit" on a spell that doesn't have an attack roll. Considering the kinds of critical fumble charts some people play with it's quite forgiving, and I'm sure it's still less lethal than a round of combat on the front line with the fighter.

    What you want to do for a Black Mage is basically take the Warmage, and make it not suck. The nice thing about the Warmage and company is that they've made the "spontaneous casting from a specific pre-made list" shtick legit, so you can just go ahead and make your own list with a comparable number of spells and call it good. Make a spell list with the kind of spells you think that Black Mage should have, from 0-9th level, with about the same number of spells as the Beguiler and Dread Necromancer. You'll probably have mostly direct damage with a few nifty useful spells like Wall of Ice or somesuch, but don't give them more than a few really good battlefield control spells (because then they're spontaneous batman), or save or dies (because that's the Beguiler's shtick). If you add multiple spells that are the same aside from dealing different damage types, only count the extra damage types as one extra spell (so you'd count just Orb of Ice as one spell, but Orb of Ice, Fire, Electricity, and Acid together are only worth two spells because it's just different damage types instead of whole new effects). Then come up with a few class abilities such as bonus metamagic feats (blaster's bread and butter), the usual Advanced Learning, and something unique (I like your random caster level bonus, it feels powerful but isn't too powerful in the grand scheme because it just gives you a couple more damage dice).
    Last edited by Fizban; 2009-07-04 at 04:00 AM.
    Fizban's Tweaks and Brew: Google Drive (PDF), Thread
    A collection of over 200 pages of individually small bans, tweaks, brews, and rule changes, usable piecemeal or nearly altogether, and even some convenient lists. Everything I've done that I'd call done enough to use in one place (plus a number of things I'm working on that aren't quite done, of course).
    Quote Originally Posted by Violet Octopus View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fizban View Post
    sheer awesomeness

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