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    Default [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    OK, so this is very literally just an idea that popped into my head; the numbers are very off the cuff. Input on those is appreciated, but what I really want to know is, is this a good idea?

    The goals here are to make multiclassing with Arcane casters more reasonable, to make lost progression less damning, and to put some limits on the Wizard while tossing a few minor bones to the Sorcerer.

    Mana
    All things that are self-aware (i.e. have a Wisdom and Charisma score, and are therefore not objects) possess Mana, an intangible quality that is associated with their life-force. The specifics of what Mana is or where it comes from are completely unknown, though debated heavily and numerous groups and factions will claim to know the 'truth' about Mana. It is not even clear whether or not different individuals or species have more or fewer Mana than others, or if some are simply more skilled in its use and therefore able to do more with the same amount. It is likely that no one will ever be able to come up with a definitive answer on this.

    Mana is used in spellcasting. By definition, anything that uses Mana is a spell. Casting spells is draining, and though lack of Mana does not impair a creature's mental or physical ability in any way, a creature can nonetheless 'feel' its lack.

    Mana is replenished by sleeping. The average creature requires eight hours of uninterrupted sleep in order to replenish their Mana.

    Caster Level
    A character's Caster Level is equal to the sum of his levels in any spellcasting classes, plus half their levels in any non-spellcasting classes.

    The Caster Level affects the potency of a character's spells, the amount of Mana they can bring to bear in a given day, and the highest level spell they can cast. No character may learn or cast a spell with a spell level higher than half their Caster Level, with the sole exception of cantrips and 1st level spells, both of which may be cast with a Caster Level of 1.

    Bonuses to Caster Level of any kind do not affect the Mana gained each day or the highest level spells that a character can cast, only the potency of their spells.

    Mana per Day
    Mechanically, Mana is quantized. This number is inherently an abstraction, but creatures are aware at least of relative magnitudes of Mana. As mentioned above, this may be the same 'amount' of Mana that is simply more powerful in the hands of a more accomplished mage, but the number is larger to illustrate the increased efficiency. Ultimately, the number is defined by the number and strength of spells that that the owner of that Mana is capable of casting.

    Generally, a creature wakes up in the morning with Mana equal to its Caster Level multiplied by its Mana Multiplier. For characters without any levels in a spellcasting class, the Mana Multiplier is 1. Spellcasting classes, like the Sorcerer or Wizard, have a higher Mana Multiplier, depending on their level, and also gain bonus Mana for having a high Ability modifier in their primary spellcasting Ability. Half-levels of Caster Level are counted for determining how much Mana a character receives each day, though half-Mana points do not actually exist. So a 4th level character who is Sorcerer 3/Rogue 1 (Caster Level 3.5, Mana Multiplier 5) has 17 Mana, not 15 (or 17.5).

    Spell Levels, Costs, and Minimum Caster Level
    {table=head]
    Spell[br]Level
    |
    Mana[br]Cost
    |
    Caster[br]Level

    0th
    |
    0
    |
    1

    1st
    |
    1
    |
    1

    2nd
    |
    3
    |
    4

    3rd
    |
    6
    |
    6

    4th
    |
    12
    |
    8

    5th
    |
    18
    |
    10

    6th
    |
    27
    |
    12

    7th
    |
    36
    |
    14

    8th
    |
    48
    |
    16

    9th
    |
    60
    |
    18
    [/table]

    Casting Spells
    Casting spells requires an amount of Mana equal to the amount in the table above. For those who are interested, the formula is ¾(spell level)2. Beyond this, casting spells has not changed in any way, and therefore all other rules of 3.5 D&D apply.

    Metamagic
    Metamagic feats increase a spell's level. The caster of a metamagic'd spell must pay the Mana Cost of the new, higher Spell Level.

    Casting Spells Spontaneously
    Spells cast spontaneously involve the caster willing their Mana into the form of the spell, powering its Arcane energies with this renewable resource. Learning a spell well enough to form the Mana into the proper shape on the fly is difficult, and the number of spells that a character might learn this way are usually very few. The advantages for doing so, however, are obvious, since such a spellcaster may utilize any spell she knows on the spot.

    Metamagic changes the form that the Mana must take for a given spell, by adding to the amount of Mana necessary. Since spontaneous casters function by having memorized and practiced their spells to the point that they can form them on the fly, adding metamagic to the mix complicates things. Whenever metamagic adds to the spell's Mana Cost by at least half the spontaneous caster's Caster Level, the casting time of the spell increases according to the following table:
    {table=head]
    Original[br]Time
    |
    Metamagic'd[br]Time

    Swift or Immediate
    |
    Move Action

    Move Action
    |
    Standard Action

    Standard Action
    |
    Full-Round Action (Move + Standard)

    Full-Round Action
    |
    1 Round

    1 or more Rounds
    |
    1 additional Round
    [/table]

    Casting Spells Prepared from a Spellbook
    A spellbook is a useful aid in spellcasting, because such a spellcaster does not need to have the form of a spell completely memorized and practiced; they can take their time and use their spellbook to help them prepare the spell. Of course, this process still takes a fair amount of knowledge of the spells in the spellbook, so it is not as if anyone could just pick up a spellbook and figure out the spells in it. It takes training to do that, which is represented by levels in a prepared spellcasting class. During preparation, the spell's Mana is actually shaped into the spell, but not yet cast. It is held in this limbo state within the caster, who may then use it as easily as one who has memorized the spell as thoroughly as a spontaneous caster. However, he must always prepare these spells ahead of time, and has no ability to easily cast a spell he hadn't realized he would need.

    The rules for preparing spells has not changed other than the need to pay the Mana Cost associated with the spell. This payment occurs during preparation; even though they still have the Mana until they actually cast the spell, it is already shaped into a spell and is therefore tied up. There is no way to recycle that Mana once thus prepared.

    Divine Spellcasting
    Divine spellcasters do not actually use their own Mana in their spells. Instead, during their morning prayers, they actually send their Mana to their deity. In fact, all prayers essentially do this, even for those who do not have the ability to cast Divine spells. These are essentially donations to the deity. In the case of those who do not cast Divine spells, it is typically only a token donation; a prayer would not diminish a Sorcerer's total Mana for their own spells. It is simply a show of faith to the god of choice.

    For divine spellcasters, however, the donation is anything but token. Divine spellcasters typically send just about all of their Mana to their deity, and in return their deity grants them already-formed spells. It is unclear how, exactly, this process works; whether or not this is the caster's own Mana returned to them, whether or not the "amount" of Mana sent back and forth matches, etc, is all unknown. Because the numbers associated with Mana are based on the number of spells a caster can cast, a divine spellcaster's Mana Multiplier represents the Mana value of the spells they are granted each morning - which may or may not actually match their own personal Mana. Such a thing is not actually quantifiable in-game, and is therefore unknown.

    Divine spellcasters may be spontaneous or prepared. They follow the same rules as Arcane casters, but in both cases are not dependant on knowing the spells themselves - instead, a deity may grant access to spells either by giving the requested spells during morning prayers, or by having a set of the spells a spontaneous divine spellcaster "knows" that the spellcaster may call for at any time.

    Bonus Mana
    A spellcaster gains a bonus to his Mana based on his primary spellcasting Ability. Namely, he adds one-quarter of his Ability bonus (if any) to his Mana Multiplier when determining his Mana for the day.

    Multiclassing and Prestige Classes
    Characters with levels in more than one casting class have separate Caster Levels in each. They therefore also have separate pools of Mana for each class, each of which is equal to that class's Caster Level times that class's Mana Multiplier. Mana from one class cannot be used for spells from another class. Why this is constitutes one of the biggest unsolved mysteries of the Arcane sciences.

    Levels in a spellcasting class do add half a Caster Level to any other spellcasting classes that a character may have. Therefore, a Sorcerer 4/Wizard 4 has a Caster Level of 6 for both Sorcerer and Wizard, and may cast 3rd level spells in each.

    Prestige Classes which add "+1 to the level of an existing spellcasting class" add 1 to that class's Caster Level and advance that class's Mana Multiplier as if a level of the class had been attained. They do not gain anything else that a level of that class might have attained. They also add half a level to the Caster Level of any other spellcasting classes that the character may have.

    When a Prestige Class has levels which advance spellcasting, but other levels that do not, the "dead levels" still add half a level to the spellcasting class. In some cases, it may be necessary to add additional non-progressing levels to the class in order to maintain balance, but in many cases the loss of a full Caster Level is more of a penalty than is warranted by the class, and so many classes may be able to maintain the same number of lost levels even as the effect of the lost level is softened somewhat.

    Sorcerer

    The Sorcerer's spellcasting is much more intuitive and natural than the Wizard's. While the Wizard's many hours of study generally provide more powerful spells, they cannot match the Sorcerer's spontaneity, and the Sorcerer also enjoys greater free time in which to study things other than magic. As such, Sorcerers tend to be somewhat more well rounded individuals, a little hardier and a bit more multifaceted, than the Wizard.

    Hit Die: d4

    Skills Per Level: 4 + Int; times 4 at 1st level

    Class Skills: Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Knowledge (Arcana), Profession (Wis), Spellcraft (Int). A Sorcerer may also add additional Class Skills through their Diverse Interests feature.

    {table=head]
    Level
    |
    Base Attack[br]Bonus
    |
    Fort[br]Save
    |
    Ref[br]Save
    |
    Will[br]Save
    |
    Special
    |
    Mana[br]Multiplier
    |
    Spells[br]Learned


    1st
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |Summon Familiar, Eschew Materials, Wild Magic, Diverse Interests|
    3
    |
    2


    2nd
    |
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    ||
    4
    |
    2


    3rd
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +3
    ||
    5
    |
    2


    4th
    |
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    ||
    6
    |
    2


    5th
    |
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Diverse Interests|
    6
    |
    2


    6th
    |
    +3
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    ||
    7
    |
    2


    7th
    |
    +3
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    ||
    8
    |
    2


    8th
    |
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    ||
    9
    |
    2


    9th
    |
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    ||
    9
    |
    2


    10th
    |
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    |Diverse Interests|
    10
    |
    2


    11th
    |
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    ||
    11
    |
    2


    12th
    |
    +6/+1
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    ||
    12
    |
    2


    13th
    |
    +6/+1
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    ||
    12
    |
    2


    14th
    |
    +7/+2
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +9
    ||
    13
    |
    2


    15th
    |
    +7/+2
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +9
    |Diverse Interests|
    14
    |
    2


    16th
    |
    +8/+3
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    ||
    15
    |
    2


    17th
    |
    +8/+3
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    ||
    15
    |
    2


    18th
    |
    +9/+4
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    ||
    16
    |
    2


    19th
    |
    +9/+4
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    ||
    17
    |
    2


    20th
    |
    +10/+5
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +12
    |Innate Magic|
    18
    |
    2
    [/table]
    Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A Sorcerer is proficient in all simple weapons, but not in any form of armor. Armor may interfere with his Arcane spells if they have Somatic Components, which most do.

    Spellcasting: A Sorcerer may cast Arcane spells spontaneously, that is, without preparation. To do so requires an amount of Mana equal to three quarters of the square of the spell's level. The Sorcerer gains Mana each morning after a full night's rest equal to his Caster Level times his Mana Multiplier, which is equal to 3 + three quarters of his class level, plus bonus Mana for having a high Charisma score.

    The Save DC of his spells is equal to 10 + the spell's level + his Cha modifier.

    To learn a spell, his Charisma score must be equal to or greater than 10 + the spell's level, and his Caster Level must be equal or greater than twice the spell's level.

    To use Metamagic, a Sorcerer must generally increase the casting time as per usual, however, a number of times a day equal to 1 + his Sorcerer level divided by 8, he may avoid doing so.

    Cantrips: Each level, a Sorcerer may learn a number of Cantrips equal to one third of his Charisma modifier (if the Charisma modifier is not evenly divisible by 3, remember the remainder and add it to his Charisma modifier on the next level).

    Summon Familiar: A Sorcerer may summon a Familiar, exactly as usual.

    Eschew Materials: A Sorcerer gains Eschew Materials as a bonus feat.

    Wild Magic: A Sorcerer's magic is inherently unpredictable. Before casting a spell, a Sorcerer rolls 1d8, and adds the result minus six if that difference is positive to his Caster Level (in other words, if he rolls a 7, his Caster Level increases by 1; on a 8, by 2). He does this before actually selecting the spell to cast. In some cases, this may allow him to cast a higher level spell than he normally could. Because he does not know any spells of that level, he cannot actually cast a higher level spell, but he may apply Metamagic to increase the spell's level (and therefore its Mana cost) to take advantage of this feature.

    Diverse Interests: A Sorcerer, when compared to a Wizard, has a lot more free time. Since they are generally energetic and enthusiastic people, Sorcerers tend to engage in a number of hobbies.

    At 1st level, and again every 5th level before 20 (5, 10, 15), a Sorcerer may choose any of the following:
    • Armor Training - The Sorcerer ignores the Arcane Spell Failure chance of Light armors, and gains proficiency in all Light Armor and Shields except Tower Shields. This Interest may be taken a second time to gain proficiency in Medium armors and shields and to ignore up to 15% of Arcane Spell Failure from those.
    • Bodybuilding - The Sorcerer's Hit Die increases to a d6. This does not retroactively affect previous levels in Sorcerer, but does affect the level in which it is gained and any that are gained thereafter. This Interest may be taken a second time, to gain a d8 Hit Die, but not before 10th, and it may not be taken again.
    • Martial Training - The Sorcerer's Base Attack Bonus progression becomes medium like that of a Cleric or Rogue. This does not retroactively affect previous levels, but does affect the level in which it is gained. Use the fractional BAB rules to determine the total when this is taken at odd levels. This feature may be taken a second time, to gain full Base Attack Bonus like a Fighter, but not before 10th level.
    • Practice - The Sorcerer's Skill Points Per Level increases to 6+Int instead of 4+Int. This does not retroactively affect previous levels of Sorcerer, but does affect the level at which this feature is gained. He may also select two of the following groups of skills to add to his Class Skills list:
      • Appraise, Decipher Script, Forgery, and Speak Language
      • Balance, Climb, Jump, and Swim
      • Bluff, Diplomacy, Disguise, Gather Information, and Intimidate
      • Handle Animal, Ride, and Survival
      • Hide, Move Silently, Listen and Spot
      • all Knowledge skills (each taken individually)
      • Perform, Sleight of Hand, Tumble, and Use Rope
      • Use Magic Device

      A Sorcerer may choose this Interest more than once; he does not gain more skill points, but may select any three groups of skills to add to his Class Skills list.
    • Swordplay - The Sorcerer gains proficiency in all Martial weapons. This feature may be taken a second time to gain proficiency in any one Exotic weapon.


    Innate Magic: At 20th level, a Sorcerer may choose one of the following bonuses:
    • All spells are Stilled and Silenced, without increasing casting time or spell level.
    • All spells are Empowered, without increasing casting time or spell level.
    • Apply any Energy Substitution, including Subdual Substitution, without increasing the casting time, even if you do not have the Energy Substitution feat for that energy type.
    • Apply Reach Spell, without increasing casting time or spell level, even if you do not have the Reach Spell feat.
    • All spells are Extended and have the DC to Dispel them increased by 5, without increasing casting time or spell level.

    A Sorcerer also may now also add 1d8-4, if it is positive, to his Caster Level when casting a spell (but since he can already cast 9th level spells, this only affects the spell's potency, not the highest Spell Level).


    Wizard

    A Wizard is a very different take on Arcane magic than the Sorcerer. Where the Sorcerer is wild and passionate, the Wizard is studious, disciplined, and patient. His power comes from long hours spent studying magic itself, and he may learn a great deal more spells than the Sorcerer.

    Hit Die: d4

    Skills Per Level: 2 + Int; times 4 at 1st level

    Class Skills: Appraise (Int), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int) Knowledge (each taken individually), Profession (Wis), Spellcraft (Int). A Sorcerer may also add additional Class Skills through their Diverse Interests feature.

    {table=head]
    Level
    |
    Base Attack[br]Bonus
    |
    Fort[br]Save
    |
    Ref[br]Save
    |
    Will[br]Save
    |
    Special
    |
    Mana[br]Multiplier


    1st
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |Summon Familiar, Specialization|
    2


    2nd
    |
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    ||
    3


    3rd
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +3
    |2nd Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    3


    4th
    |
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    ||
    4


    5th
    |
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |3rd Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    4


    6th
    |
    +3
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    ||
    5


    7th
    |
    +3
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    |4th Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    5


    8th
    |
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    ||
    6


    9th
    |
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    |5th Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    6


    10th
    |
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    ||
    7


    11th
    |
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    |6th Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    7


    12th
    |
    +6/+1
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    ||
    8


    13th
    |
    +6/+1
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    |7th Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    8


    14th
    |
    +7/+2
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +9
    ||
    9


    15th
    |
    +7/+2
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +9
    |8th Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    9


    16th
    |
    +8/+3
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    ||
    10


    17th
    |
    +8/+3
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    |9th Level Specialist Spell, 1/day|
    10


    18th
    |
    +9/+4
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    ||
    11


    19th
    |
    +9/+4
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    ||
    11


    20th
    |
    +10/+5
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +12
    ||
    12
    [/table]
    Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A Wizard is proficient with the club, dagger, heavy crossbow, light crossbow, and quarterstaff, but not in any form of armor. Armor may interfere with his Arcane spells if they have Somatic Components, which most do.

    Spellcasting: A Wizard may cast Arcane spells by preparing them each morning. To do so requires at least eight hours of uninterrupted sleep (or in the case of creatures that do not sleep, general rest and inactivity), and then an hour spent studying his Spellbook.

    During this time, the Wizard may prepare as many spells from his Spellbook as he has Mana for - this Mana is unused until the Wizard actually casts the spell, but having the spell prepared effectively "ties up" the Mana so it cannot be used for any other use. Each spell costs an amount of Mana equal to three quarters of the square of the spell's level.

    A Wizard need not tie up all his Mana in spells at the beginning of the day, but preparation always takes a full hour to prepare new slots.

    A Wizard gains Mana each morning after a full night's rest equal to his Caster Level times his Mana Multiplier, which is equal to 2 + one half of his class level, plus bonus Mana for having a high Intelligence score.

    A Wizard may always prepare Read Magic, even without his Spellbook. Every other spell requires his own Spellbook to study from (all normal Spellbook rules apply).

    The Save DC of his spells is equal to 10 + the spell's level + his Int modifier.

    To learn a spell, his Intelligence score must be equal to or greater than 10 + the spell's level, and his Caster Level must be equal or greater than twice the spell's level (but see below). He learns the spell by scribing it in his Spellbook (normal rules apply, but no free spells; all must be learned from scrolls or other Spellbooks, and paid for in full).

    Specializing: A Wizard does not have the intuitive knowledge of his spells that a Sorcerer does, but his hours of study grants him better understanding of his spells. However, there is only so much time in a day, and so a Wizard cannot possibly master all of the schools of magic.

    Therefore, he specializes: he chooses one school to be his specialization, and has two schools which he is forced to ignore in their entirety. The specialized school is important for his Specialist Spell feature. He must choose two prohibited schools, from which he cannot learn or cast spells, not even from magic items, but he may not choose Divination as one of his prohibited schools. Diviners must still ban two other schools.

    A Wizard also has the option to be a "Focused" Specialist - he must ban a third school, but gains a number of bonus Mana each morning equal to the Mana cost of the highest level Wizard spell he can cast, which must be spent on preparing any number of spells from his specialized school. This Mana may be combined with his normal Mana, but it must always be used to cast spells from his specialized school.

    Cantrips: A Wizard's Spellbook starts with a number of cantrips equal to three times his Int modifier, one of which must be Read Magic (even though he does not need his Spellbook to prepare it, learning Read Magic from his Spellbook was an important part of his entry into the Wizard class). From then on, he may scribe Cantrips into his Spellbook as normal.

    Summon Familiar: A Wizard may summon a familiar as normal.

    Specialist Spells: At 3rd level, a Wizard gains the ability to learn and scribe 2nd level spells from his specialist school into his Spellbook, and may prepare ny one each day (paying for its Mana as usual).

    Once he reaches 4th level (and is therefore capable of casting 2nd level spells normally), this feature is obsolete and he may prepare 2nd level spells from any schools except those that he banned normally, without the once per day restriction.

    If he is a multiclass Wizard with a higher Caster Level (and therefore capable of casting 3rd level spells normally), this feature does nothing.

    This feature is not a part of his spellcasting and is therefore not included when prestige classes grant "+1 to an existing (Arcane) spellcasting class".

    At 5th level, he gains the same feature but with 3rd level spells. At 7th, 9th, 11th, 13th, 15th, and 17th, he gains the feature for 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th level spells, respectively.
    Last edited by DragoonWraith; 2009-11-02 at 06:56 PM. Reason: Added the Wizard, edited Sorcerer some

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Troll in the Playground
     
    DruidGirl

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    The Netherlands

    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    How is this fundamentally different from the spell point system/psionic system? I don't want to sound harsh, but you seem to have sort of re-invented the wheel.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Imp

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Belgium
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard


  4. - Top - End - #4
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    I like the sorcerer, it's probably overpowered, but I'm really bad at judging that kind of thing.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    Quote Originally Posted by DragoonWraith View Post
    Spellcasting: A Sorcerer may cast Arcane spells spontaneously, that is, without preparation. To do so requires an amount of Mana equal to three quarters of the square of the spell's level. The Save DC of his spells is equal to 10 + the spell's level + his Cha modifier. To learn a spell, his Charisma modifier must be equal to or greater than 10 + the spell's level, and his Caster Level must be equal or greater than twice the spell's level. The Sorcerer gains Mana each morning after a full night's rest equal to his Caster Level times his Mana Multiplier, which is equal to 3 + three quarters of his class level, plus bonus Mana for having a high Charisma score.
    Emphasis mine. Should probably read "score" rather than "modifier".
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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    Quote Originally Posted by Slavaa View Post
    I like the sorcerer, it's probably overpowered, but I'm really bad at judging that kind of thing.
    Speaking of overpowered sorcerers, One member of my group tried to up the Sorcerer to the point that I could put a creature 3 CRs higher than the party, and it has a life span of less than 4 rounds, every time...
    (we tested it)

    but, honestly, I think THIS is a pretty good change. I like the Diverse Interests feature, and we use something similar to the innate magic ability in my group
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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    OK, differences between this and spell points (since it is inherently a spell points style system):
    • Spell costs are much higher for higher level spells. Under the UA spell points variant, 9th level spells cost 19 points. Under mine, they cost 60. This is important because higher level spells are much better than lower level spells; a linear model does not fit. At level 20, ignoring bonuses from high Int, a Wizard could cast four level 9 spells - but he'd be entirely out of Mana. This makes level 9 spells far more "emergency only" than before.
    • The level of spell you learn is based on Caster Level. Caster Level increases even when you're not taking levels in a spellcasting class. This means if you go Fighter 4/Wizard 1, you can be casting 2nd level spells, not 1st. You'll have a lot less Mana with which to do it, but if you're a reasonably strong melee fighter you probably aren't casting spells too often. That, at least, is the theory.
    • Mana sounds cooler than Spell Points.


    As for the Sorcerer, I just kind of threw that together. I think it's fitting for the Sorcerer, and I don't think any of the things you can get with it are overpowered. They're good, yes, but they only affect continued levels in Sorcerer, and the Sorcerer could use a few bonuses like that (not related to spellcasting), I think.

    @ Maldraugedhen: Thanks, good catch.
    Last edited by DragoonWraith; 2009-10-10 at 08:21 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    You know, DragoonWraith, you can't keep creating so many amazings things. People who don't do so well at the homebrewing game might get jealous.
    I actually really like what you've come up with here, especially with better mutliclassing ability. Why didn't they come up with this in the first place?
    Can't wait for the Wizard!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Not-a-Zombie View Post
    Speaking of overpowered sorcerers, One member of my group tried to up the Sorcerer to the point that I could put a creature 3 CRs higher than the party, and it has a life span of less than 4 rounds, every time...
    (we tested it)
    I really need to see this Sorcerer, even if it is broken. Could you, would you, show it to me? I would be greatful!
    Last edited by Dante & Vergil; 2009-10-11 at 06:55 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    One setting difference I can see from all living things having mana within them is the defiler-like concept of an arcanist being able to learn techniques to draw off of the mana of nearby creatures, to save on using as much of his own personal stores. The most skilled would be able to gently pull from all around them, while the novice might have to kill a creature to extract the mana from it (a form of sacrificial magic). Then again, some cultures might routinely use lesser forms of sacrificial magic (animal sacrifice for certain rites, divinations, etc.). Haruspicy (divination by reading entrails) might have less to do with the entrails, and more to do with the tapping of the mana spilled by the chicken's death. Sacrifices of bulls at the altars of the gods might not be just ritually significant, but also provide an influx of potent raw mana to empower the consecration or hallowing of that sacred space.

    To some, the taking of mana by killing another being is seen as reprehensibly wasteful, as the living creature creates that sort of mana every day of it's life, and the defiler is destroying that endless fountain of mana for a 'quick fix.' To those who practice the art, that very exclusivity, the fact that the mana you are using for this rite will *never* be replaced, lends it a different level of strength and usefulness for these rites. It represents actual sacrifice, and not just temporary inconvenience, which pleases some gods and spirits, letting them know that you aren't just calling upon their favors at no lasting cost to yourself, regarding their aid as no more precious than milk from a cow.

    This option, taking mana from others, rather than functioning purely on your own internal stores of mana, would likely be roundly condemned (and since it starts with sacrificial tapping of mana, pretty darn evil).

    Spells that cause 'mana drain' could be designed as attacks, causing damage from heat (as the mana 'burns out' of the target(s)) and causing Sorcerers and Wizards to also lose spell potential, as their power is torn from them.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    Quote Originally Posted by DragoonWraith View Post
    The goals here are to make multiclassing with Arcane casters more reasonable, to make lost progression less damning, and to put some limits on the Wizard while tossing a few minor bones to the Sorcerer.
    I see the "minor" bonusses you gave the Sorcerer, but now I'm worried about the limits you're going to put on the Wizard. Maybe it won't be so bad, I don't know.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    I like the Sorcerer a lot, but I'm wondering how you'll keep the Wizard a prepared caster.

    Good work, hope you can keep it up.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    Wow, all this attention! Hehe, I'd assumed it had been written off as just another spell point system, been done before and probably better. As something I really only tossed together in a few hours late at night, that wasn't a big deal to me, but a bit disappointing - I liked the idea, anyway. But it seems like it was more just a function of being posted at an odd hour, perhaps?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dante & Vergil View Post
    You know, DragoonWraith, you can't keep creating so many amazings things. People who don't do so well at the homebrewing game might get jealous.
    I actually really like what you've come up with here, especially with better mutliclassing ability. Why didn't they come up with this in the first place?
    Can't wait for the Wizard!!
    Wow, thanks! Very kind words.

    Quote Originally Posted by Set View Post
    One setting difference I can see from all living things having mana within them is the defiler-like concept of an arcanist being able to learn techniques to draw off of the mana of nearby creatures, to save on using as much of his own personal stores. The most skilled would be able to gently pull from all around them, while the novice might have to kill a creature to extract the mana from it (a form of sacrificial magic). Then again, some cultures might routinely use lesser forms of sacrificial magic (animal sacrifice for certain rites, divinations, etc.). Haruspicy (divination by reading entrails) might have less to do with the entrails, and more to do with the tapping of the mana spilled by the chicken's death. Sacrifices of bulls at the altars of the gods might not be just ritually significant, but also provide an influx of potent raw mana to empower the consecration or hallowing of that sacred space.

    To some, the taking of mana by killing another being is seen as reprehensibly wasteful, as the living creature creates that sort of mana every day of it's life, and the defiler is destroying that endless fountain of mana for a 'quick fix.' To those who practice the art, that very exclusivity, the fact that the mana you are using for this rite will *never* be replaced, lends it a different level of strength and usefulness for these rites. It represents actual sacrifice, and not just temporary inconvenience, which pleases some gods and spirits, letting them know that you aren't just calling upon their favors at no lasting cost to yourself, regarding their aid as no more precious than milk from a cow.

    This option, taking mana from others, rather than functioning purely on your own internal stores of mana, would likely be roundly condemned (and since it starts with sacrificial tapping of mana, pretty darn evil).

    Spells that cause 'mana drain' could be designed as attacks, causing damage from heat (as the mana 'burns out' of the target(s)) and causing Sorcerers and Wizards to also lose spell potential, as their power is torn from them.
    Wow, that's awesome. And I totally wrote that fluff at 5 in the morning, just kind of "going with it". Very, very nicely done. I may have to write a PrC for that, huh? Or, actually, probably two, one for the evil version and one for the more subtle, gentle version. The evil one's totally going to be modeled after the Necrocarnate, because Soulmelding is awesome.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dante & Vergil View Post
    I see the "minor" bonusses you gave the Sorcerer, but now I'm worried about the limits you're going to put on the Wizard. Maybe it won't be so bad, I don't know.
    Yeah, the bonuses to the Sorcerer are perhaps less minor that originally intended. It really was just thrown together, again, at 5 in the morning. It was necessary to put together a class to illustrate the Mana Multiplier mechanic, and I couldn't very well create a Sorcerer without giving him something.

    The limits on the Wizard are primarily in the form of not getting nearly as many spells per day as before. They'll actually do somewhat better at low levels (up to about 5 or 6), but by 20 casting four 9th level spells would take all of their Mana (before bonus Mana from Int). Using one 9th level spell a day would probably be reasonable, but more than that would get difficult. Since 9th level spells are broken... this seems like a step in the right direction to me.

    Even the Sorcerer goes dry after like six 9th level spells, though. I'm really aiming at making 9th level spells costly, without having to directly change each spell.

    A multiclassing Wizard may have to pay more gold for higher level spells, perhaps. I still have to figure that bit out, which is why I haven't posted him yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zovc View Post
    I like the Sorcerer a lot, but I'm wondering how you'll keep the Wizard a prepared caster.

    Good work, hope you can keep it up.
    That's easy - when you prepare spells, you "tie up" your Mana in the spell, and can't use it. Preparation takes a long time, so you prepare your spells, and your Mana is sort of "taken" even though you still have it, until you cast the spell, when you lose it.
    Last edited by DragoonWraith; 2009-10-13 at 04:00 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Added the Wizard, edited the Sorcerer some. I added more to him and several of you said he was overpowered as it was, so comments on that would be nice.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Mana as understood by the people who use the term is something like "authority", something like "charisma", and something like "honour". I'm wondering if this could be keyed to Cha and linked to some kind of honour system somehow...

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Well, the Wizard looks nice but the ability Specialist Spells could be more like Advanced Learning from the Beguiler/Warmage/Dread Necromancer except from the specialist school.
    The tweeks you did for the sorcerer are fine, but I am rubbed the wrong way with Wild Magic. Me, personally, am really cursed with bad rolls, so I really don't like being stuck with less than I have, power-wise. The upgrade makes at level 20 it better, but it still hurts me to the max, so I would probably just get rid of it, but that's me.
    I understand that these are for balance, and that's fine, but I wanted to put my 2 cents in. Take it or leave it as you will.
    Last edited by Dante & Vergil; 2009-10-17 at 02:31 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    I think advancing the specialist school feature is a good idea. I could never get it right, but I always thought a specialist wizard doesn't get enough for specializing...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dante & Vergil View Post
    I really need to see this Sorcerer, even if it is broken. Could you, would you, show it to me? I would be greatful!
    Went ahead and posted it as "Broken Sorcerer [3.5] (for Dante & Virgil)
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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    Quote Originally Posted by NakedCelt View Post
    Mana as understood by the people who use the term is something like "authority", something like "charisma", and something like "honour". I'm wondering if this could be keyed to Cha and linked to some kind of honour system somehow...
    Mmm... unfortunately, I'm basing this on the sort of general RPG use of Mana as points used for magic. It's keyed off of Charisma for Sorcerers (and presumably Bards and others), but it does not match up well with the concept of Mana as believed in in the real world.

    Certainly no insult was meant to those peoples or their beliefs, however. A Mana system based on those beliefs would be very cool (though I only know a little about it), but this isn't that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dante & Vergil View Post
    Well, the Wizard looks nice but the ability Specialist Spells could be more like Advanced Learning from the Beguiler/Warmage/Dread Necromancer except from the specialist school.
    Well, there's three reasons I didn't do that. First, Advanced Learning doesn't let you learn spells ahead of time - which is important to the Wizard. Second, the ability is useless if you multiclass - that is intentional. With Advanced Learning, you can always learn a spell of the highest level you can already cast, even if the level is delayed by multiclassing. Third, the Wizard's entire schtick is that he can scribe a ton of spells in his Spellbook - and the Specialist Spell ability lets him scribe spells he comes across on those odd levels of the next level, which is convenient.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dante & Vergil View Post
    The tweeks you did for the sorcerer are fine, but I am rubbed the wrong way with Wild Magic. Me, personally, am really cursed with bad rolls, so I really don't like being stuck with less than I have, power-wise. The upgrade makes at level 20 it better, but it still hurts me to the max, so I would probably just get rid of it, but that's me.
    I understand that these are for balance, and that's fine, but I wanted to put my 2 cents in. Take it or leave it as you will.
    Uhm. There's a 25% chance of getting a bonus, 0% chance of losing anything. It can only benefit you - you do not take a penalty if you roll low. You just get a bonus if you roll a 7 or 8.

    Quote Originally Posted by Not-a-Zombie View Post
    I think advancing the specialist school feature is a good idea. I could never get it right, but I always thought a specialist wizard doesn't get enough for specializing...
    Yeah, I like that change, personally.
    Last edited by DragoonWraith; 2009-10-18 at 02:25 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    Quote Originally Posted by DragoonWraith View Post
    Uhm. There's a 25% chance of getting a bonus, 0% chance of losing anything. It can onlybenefit you - you do not take a penalty if you roll low. You just get a bonus if you roll a 7 or 8.
    I totally read that wrong. I thought it was a similar variation of Wild Magic from the Wild Mage in CArc.
    Could there be an option where they can automatically get that 1-2 level, maybe in addition to your wild magic? The trade off would be a cost/penalty to the Sorcerer or at an increased cost of mana (more so than a spell of the higher level would be).
    Last edited by Dante & Vergil; 2009-10-18 at 10:06 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Could, perhaps. The possibility of hurting yourself (a la Wilder) could be neat... Not really sure what to use.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Sorcerer and Wizard

    Quote Originally Posted by Johel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ichneumon View Post
    How is this fundamentally different from the spell point system/psionic system? I don't want to sound harsh, but you seem to have sort of re-invented the wheel.
    Actually, he did not: The Spellpoint system works more like Psionics Power Points in that you have to "purchase" caster levels, this is a terrible problem as it further encourages the use of Save or Die/Save or Suck spells, as many of them do not care for the actual caster level beyond going past spell resistance. Because of the linear progression of the cost of spells, it is much easier to simply synch all of the spellpoints into higher level spells in what essentially would ammount to trading lower level spell slots for higher ones. Lastly, it gives the prepared caster even more versatility, as they do not expend the spell slot for their spells, but instead can cast the spell multiple times, provided that they pay the spellpoints.

    Now, all of the afforementioned problems have been averted with this, I must say, I'm quite impressed.

    All that is missing now, is the conversion for stuff like Ring of Wizardry that grants additional spell slots, would they just give the cost of the spell in mana?

    A Divine conversion would also be rather cool.
    Last edited by Arcane_Snowman; 2009-10-20 at 04:50 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    I actually almost like Divine casters using the normal system, to differentiate the two and because it feels more "holy" to me to have the specific spells granted to you rather than using your own Mana. I mean, you certainly could, but I kind of like not, ya know?

    Of course, then they're stuck with the sucky multiclassing, which is lame... and the balance is off, since I nerfed these guys pretty heavily by stripping them of a great many spells per day...

    As for items, yeah I think just giving the equivalent amount of Mana is appropriate.

    Does anyone have commentary on the actual amount of Mana that you have at each level? It ends up allowing a lot less spells than usual.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    As for 0-level spells costing 0 mana, don't you run into the same problem that pathfinder had with cure minor wounds?

    Also, things like detect magic, detect poison, resistance, mending, light, ghost sound, and create water being used at will create some minor balance problems.

    Perhaps you should change the way cantrips work, stating that you spend a certain number of mana points at the start of each day and get twice as many (or even three times as many) cantrips to use that day.

    Otherwise, this system is completely and utterly fantastic.
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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    At-will cantrips don't bother me; if there are particular cantrips that are problematic (as Cure Minor Wounds certainly is, though I don't agree that the rest you list are, excepting perhaps Create Water), they should just get banned by the DM.

    That said, that fix is pretty sweet, and a really good way to do it.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Can you add a couple of prestigue classes or feats for this system, so that i have an idea of how to make new classes using this. Also, I think if something is called wild magic it has to have a chance of harm, unless you have to always use it.
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    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Most feats, and pretty much all classes that don't have their own spellcasting progression, should be completely compatible. Things with their own spellcasting (various base classes, plus Suel Arcanamach, Sublime Chord, etc.) obviously need to have their mana multiplier progression determined.

    I should write up some rules on multiclassing/prestige classing, though. The section of the Wizard devoted to specialist spells touches on it, but actual general rules would help.
    EDIT: This is done, see the first post.
    The only real rule I can see implementing for feats would be that metamagic'd spells cost their new spell level's Mana cost, which is pretty obvious I think, but worth mentioning.

    Was there something in particular that you were looking for?

    If you want unique PrCs for this system, yeah, I intend to look into that.
    Last edited by DragoonWraith; 2009-11-02 at 06:58 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    I don't really care for the wizard being pretty much a vancian caster still. The varient from the SRD, here, has something I would like to see.

    Quote Originally Posted by SRD Spell Point Varient
    Preparing Spells
    With this variant, spellcasters still prepare spells as normal (assuming they normally prepare spells). In effect, casters who prepare spells are setting their list of “spells known” for the day. They need not prepare multiple copies of the same spell, since they can cast any combination of their prepared spells each day (up to the limit of their spell points).

    For example, Boredflak the 4th-level wizard has an Intelligence score of 16. When using the spell point system, he would prepare four 0-level spells, four 1st-level spells (three plus his bonus spell for high Int), and three 2nd-level spells (two plus his bonus spell for high Int). These spells make up his entire list of spells that he can cast during the day, though he can cast any combination of them, as long as he has sufficient spell points.
    Bolded for importance and convenience.
    Just use the old wizard spells per day table as their spells known. It's up to you as always.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Hmm. I see that as a rather large power boost to the Wizard, and that I'd like to avoid. It also doesn't really fit the fluff that I just wrote up. Basically, I think before I'd do that, I'd just eliminate the Wizard as a class altogether. We don't really need a class that has the best of both worlds like that.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Quote Originally Posted by DragoonWraith View Post
    Hmm. I see that as a rather large power boost to the Wizard, and that I'd like to avoid. It also doesn't really fit the fluff that I just wrote up. Basically, I think before I'd do that, I'd just eliminate the Wizard as a class altogether. We don't really need a class that has the best of both worlds like that.
    Thank you.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Out of interest, can I borrow the mana multiplier mechanic for A20? It is a much better system than the lists I have at the moment, and I can call divine mana "favour".
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: [3.5 Alt Spell System] Mana (and Sorcerer and Wizard)

    Sure thing. An appropriate line in the credits would be appreciated. Thanks for the interest!

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