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    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    I've got a question about item creation in Pathfinder. To create a magic item, you need to meet certain prerequisites. For example, to create a Handy Haversack, you need to have the feat Craft Wondrous Item, and the spell secret chest. The rules also state that if you don't meet one of the prerequisites, you can still create it, but the DC goes up by 5.

    Handy Haversack is not a terribly expensive item. You could create it pretty early, except for the fact that secret chest is a level 5 spell, so you need to be level 9 to create it. However, the rules say that I can still create it without that spell, but with +5 DC. So does that really mean I don't need to be level 9 anymore?

    In this particular case, the prerequisite is really quite steep, considering the item's cost. Skipping it sounds like a really good deal, because I can now make it at a much lower level. I'd also expect a 9th level wizard to prefer to spend his time on much more powerful items.

    Of course the DC depends on the caster level of the item. So how do you determine that for a Wondrous Item? Is the caster level of a Handy Haversack 9 because of the secret chest prereq? I assume that would remain the same if I skip that prereq? So my DC would be 5 + 9 + 5 = 19, right? If I'm allowed to take 10, that'd still be an automatic success.

    Do I have this correct?

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcv View Post
    I've got a question about item creation in Pathfinder. To create a magic item, you need to meet certain prerequisites. For example, to create a Handy Haversack, you need to have the feat Craft Wondrous Item, and the spell secret chest. The rules also state that if you don't meet one of the prerequisites, you can still create it, but the DC goes up by 5.

    Handy Haversack is not a terribly expensive item. You could create it pretty early, except for the fact that secret chest is a level 5 spell, so you need to be level 9 to create it. However, the rules say that I can still create it without that spell, but with +5 DC. So does that really mean I don't need to be level 9 anymore?
    Yes, there are exceptions for potions (you must have all spells to do it can't bypass with a +5 DC).

    But Wonderous can be bypassed.
    Of course the DC depends on the caster level of the item. So how do you determine that for a Wondrous Item? Is the caster level of a Handy Haversack 9 because of the secret chest prereq? I assume that would remain the same if I skip that prereq? So my DC would be 5 + 9 + 5 = 19, right? If I'm allowed to take 10, that'd still be an automatic success.

    Do I have this correct?
    Yes, in most cases it is still easy to perform the DCs.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by ravagerofworlds View Post
    What exactly are peeps referencing a DC +5 modifier to not having a spell prereq? The SRD on this topic seems pretty clear on prerequisites.
    You failed to notice this is a Pathfinder [PF] question, not a 3.5 question, as indicated in the thread title.

    Pathfinder uses different rules for magic item creation. No XP costs, but a skill check is required. Its even possible for non-casters to craft some magic items, if they have the Master Craftsman feat.
    Last edited by Jeraa; 2012-11-10 at 01:46 PM.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeraa View Post
    You failed to notice this is a Pathfinder [PF] question, not a 3.5 question, as indicated in the thread title.

    Pathfinder uses different rules for magic item creation. No XP costs, but a skill check is required. Its even possible for non-casters to craft some magic items, if they have the Master Craftsman feat.
    Thanks. I "failed" to understand an abbreviation. I've since deleted my post.
    Last edited by ravagerofworlds; 2012-11-10 at 02:08 PM.
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    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck_II View Post
    Yes, there are exceptions for potions (you must have all spells to do it can't bypass with a +5 DC).
    That's also true for scrolls and wands I believe. Staves too, presumably. Are there any other exceptions?

    Yes, in most cases it is still easy to perform the DCs.
    Doesn't that make the prerequisites and the Spellcraft check itself a bit too irrelevant? If I'll get an autosuccess anyway, what do they really add to the system?

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcv View Post
    That's also true for scrolls and wands I believe. Staves too, presumably. Are there any other exceptions?
    Scrolls, staves, wands, and potions. As well as any other spell completion or spell trigger items.

    Doesn't that make the prerequisites and the Spellcraft check itself a bit too irrelevant? If I'll get an autosuccess anyway, what do they really add to the system?
    It allows a way for casters to make items that would potentially be above their ability to make, or for them to make items they couldn't before. It also allows a way to make cursed items (by failing the skill check by 5 or more).

    But it was specifically meant to be easy, the developers have said so.
    Last edited by Jeraa; 2012-11-10 at 02:38 PM.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcv View Post
    Doesn't that make the prerequisites and the Spellcraft check itself a bit too irrelevant? If I'll get an autosuccess anyway, what do they really add to the system?
    Well, it's autosuccess for a spellcaster. PF opens it up to non-spellcasters, too, and it's not an autosuccess for them. But the ease of the check makes it possible.

    In addition, you can voluntarily increase the check DC in order to craft faster. One day's work for every 1kgp of value of the magic item (months and months for big items). Adding 5 to the DC drops that time in half. There's only rule for the single DC increase, but it would not be unreasonable to ask your GM for additional DC/time tradeoffs.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    The caster level of the items in the book are for items in treasure. You can craft an item at whatever caster level you want you are capable of doing. Notice metamagic rods are caster level 17. You can take Craft Rod at level 9. You are not prohibited from making metamagic rods for 8 more levels. You can make a Rod of Empower at caster level 9. It will still cost the gp as stated in the book, but your Spellcraft check is for caster level 9. It works as a Rod of Empower in all ways. Its caster level is 9 for purposes of Dispel Magic, Disjunction, etc., but otherwise is a Rod of Empower as any Rod of Empower you would find in a treasure hoard. I don't think you could make a Rod of a caster level less than 9 since caster level 9 is a prerequisite for the feat.

    Potions, scrolls, wands, and staves require the specific spells. You cannot take +5 Spellcraft DC instead. The minimum caster level is the minimum caster level required to cast the highest level spell in the item.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    The minimum caster level required for the item creation feat has no bearing on the minimum caster level of the item. Otherwise, you would never have caster level 1 Cure Light Wounds potions.

    Also, look at staves, which have a minimum caster level of 8. Craft Staff has requires a minimum caster level of 11th to take.

    Furthermore, a staff can hold a spell of any level, unlike a wand, which is limited to spells of 4th level or lower. The minimum caster level of a staff is 8th.
    If other magical items had minimum caster levels, you would figure that would be noted. But its not.

    (And the Strand of Prayer Beads bead of blessing has a listed CL of 1st, not 3rd like Craft Wondrous Item would require. A few other items are the same way.)
    Last edited by Jeraa; 2012-11-10 at 03:26 PM.

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    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by navar100 View Post
    The caster level of the items in the book are for items in treasure. You can craft an item at whatever caster level you want you are capable of doing. Notice metamagic rods are caster level 17.
    Are they? Well, what do you know! It does state the caster level explicitly with each item! I'd completely missed that, so I was wondering how to figure out the caster level, but apparently that problem has been solved.

    I take it this caster level is the minimum it has to be, right? It'd be silly if you could choose a lower caster level.

    You can make a Rod of Empower at caster level 9.
    You mean the character is level 9, right? Surely you can't voluntarily lower the CL of the item?

    It will still cost the gp as stated in the book, but your Spellcraft check is for caster level 9.
    But this sounds like you do mean the CL of the item.

    It works as a Rod of Empower in all ways. Its caster level is 9 for purposes of Dispel Magic, Disjunction,
    But how big of a disadvantage is that really? And if it really does turn out to be a huge disadvantage, wouldn't you always want to increase the caster level of the item? Or is your own level the maximum you can use for this? (And if that's the case, then how does it work with non-casters who make an item but have no caster levels at all?)

    but otherwise is a Rod of Empower as any Rod of Empower you would find in a treasure hoard. I don't think you could make a Rod of a caster level less than 9 since caster level 9 is a prerequisite for the feat.
    And would it cost the same too? Because with a different CL, it less or more powerful in a subtle way, isn't it?

    CL does have a big impact on the price and value of potions, wands and scrolls, but not on wondrous items. So does it really make sense that you can change the caster level of wondrous items?


    Quote Originally Posted by Jeraa View Post
    The minimum caster level required for the item creation feat has no bearing on the minimum caster level of the item. Otherwise, you would never have caster level 1 Cure Light Wounds potions.
    I now get the impression we've been doing something wrong with potions. There's a helpful NPC that lets us but potions at cost price, and he's level 3, so his potions of Cure Light Wounds heal 1d8+3, yet are cheaper than regular potions. But that's not right, is it? To heal 1d8+3, they'd have to have CL 3, and cost 3 times as much.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcv View Post
    You mean the character is level 9, right? Surely you can't voluntarily lower the CL of the item?
    From the SRD:

    A creator can create an item at a lower caster level than her own, but never lower than the minimum level needed to cast the needed spell
    You might do this to keep the value of the item (and thus cost and time to craft) down, especially if it's a spell or effect where having a higher caster level doesn't help in any material fashion.

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    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    But isn't that only relevant for items that cast spells (potions, scrolls, wands, staves)? I don't quite understand what this means for Wondrous Items.

    Suppose my level 4 wizard wants to make a Handy Haversack. Can I make it CL4 instead of CL9? What is the real effect of that? Can I also make it CL9? Can I make it a higher CL?

    For scrolls it all makes sense, but for Wondrous Items it doesn't.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcv View Post
    But isn't that only relevant for items that cast spells (potions, scrolls, wands, staves)? I don't quite understand what this means for Wondrous Items.
    Aside from cost (and durations and whatnot for wands, scrolls, etc), caster level affects the item saves (if they're not being carried by someone with higher saves) and how difficult the item is to suppress with a dispel.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcv View Post
    I now get the impression we've been doing something wrong with potions. There's a helpful NPC that lets us but potions at cost price, and he's level 3, so his potions of Cure Light Wounds heal 1d8+3, yet are cheaper than regular potions. But that's not right, is it? To heal 1d8+3, they'd have to have CL 3, and cost 3 times as much.
    The cost to buy a potion is: spell level x caster level x 50gp. Making it is half that.

    So, a standard, CL 1 potion of cure light wounds costs (1x1x50) 50 gp to buy, and 25gp to make. A CL 3 potion of cure light wounds would cost (1x3x50) 150gp to buy, or 75gp to make.

    Caster level 3 potions will always cost more then caster level 1 potions. You don't get to scale your potions to a certain caster level for free.

    Suppose my level 4 wizard wants to make a Handy Haversack. Can I make it CL4 instead of CL9? What is the real effect of that? Can I also make it CL9? Can I make it a higher CL?
    The caster level of an item must be high enough to cast whatever spells the item has as a prerequisite, as you have to cast those spells during the creation of the item. So, if you do use the Secret Chest spell during creation of your Handy Haversack, the haversack does have a minimum caster level of 9, and you would have to be 9th level to create it.

    However, you can always chose to ignore the prerequisite Secret Chest spell, which ups the DC to create the item by +5. Then, you can set the caster level as low as you want, even to a minimum of 1, as there are no other spell prerequisites you have to meet. Note that this won't actually save you any money. It would still cost the same. (The items caster level doesn't affect the price of items that don't duplicate spells. Caster level does affect the price of scrolls, potions, staves, and wands. Probably a few other items as well.) Also note that he can't make it with a caster level above 4th - you can't make an item with a caster level higher then yours.

    A 4th level caster can make a Handy Haversack, but would have to leave out the Secret Chest prerequisite, as he can't meet it. And he could make it at any caster level from 1st to 4th. Lets assume 4th level. So the skill DC to create the item would therefore be 5 (the base) + 4 (the caster level of the item) +5 (because he didn't use Secret Page , for a total DC of 14. If the caster spends the appropriate amount of gold, and succeeds at a DC 14 check, he has made his Handy Haversack.

    As for the effects of caster level for wondrous items (or any other item, as well):

    Magic items use the same saving throw bonus for all saves, no matter what the type (Fortitude, Reflex, or Will). A magic item's saving throw bonus equals 2 + 1/2 its caster level (rounded down). The only exceptions to this are intelligent magic items, which make Will saves based on their own Wisdom scores.
    A handy haversack at the default caster level (9th) would have saving throw modifiers of +6. The haversack made by our 4th level wizard above would have saves of +4, potentially as low as +2 if he made it at minimum caster level (CL 1).
    Last edited by Jeraa; 2012-11-10 at 05:52 PM.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    So making a Handy Haversack without Secret Chest can actually be easier than making it with that spell? And the only real effect is a lower save bonus (which I don't think I've ever seen used in play).

    So how do Metamagic Rods end up with such a high Caster Level? They don't have any prerequisites that require a high level, do they? I don't see why any actually created rod would ever have a CL of 17, which makes you wonder why they'd always be CL17 when found as part of treasure. Maybe it makes more sense if magic item treasure had a randomly determined CL.

    Anyway, it's all a lot clearer now. I'll just start making low-CL items without any problems, and probably be unpleasantly confronted with the downsides of low saves much, much later in the campaign.

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcv View Post
    So how do Metamagic Rods end up with such a high Caster Level? They don't have any prerequisites that require a high level, do they? I don't see why any actually created rod would ever have a CL of 17, which makes you wonder why they'd always be CL17 when found as part of treasure. Maybe it makes more sense if magic item treasure had a randomly determined CL.
    Because thats what Wizards of the Coast thought sounded good. Pathfinder just copied that.

    For the metamagic rods, its entirely possible CL 17 was chosen because the Greater rods can be applied to all spell levels, including 9th level ones. They could of figured that, in order to put the ability to do that into a metamagic rod, one would first have to be able to cast such spells. And since the various strength of metamagi rod are all lumped together in a single block, all were given the higher caster level.

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    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Resurrecting an old thread because the situation finally came up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeraa View Post
    However, you can always chose to ignore the prerequisite Secret Chest spell, which ups the DC to create the item by +5. Then, you can set the caster level as low as you want, even to a minimum of 1, as there are no other spell prerequisites you have to meet. Note that this won't actually save you any money. It would still cost the same. (The items caster level doesn't affect the price of items that don't duplicate spells. Caster level does affect the price of scrolls, potions, staves, and wands. Probably a few other items as well.) Also note that he can't make it with a caster level above 4th - you can't make an item with a caster level higher then yours.
    As we were trying to make sense of the rules yesterday, the GM and another player with more Pathfinder experience than I have, decided on the exact opposite: My (now level 5) Wizard can make them at caster level 9, but not any lower than that. They figured that otherwise caster level would be pretty meaningless, and this way at least it figured in the DC (though it was still an automatic success).

    The other player also mentioned a case where someone calculated he'd have a chance of success creating some really high level item (a Luckblade with wishes?) as early as level 6.

    All in all I doubt it matters much; I can make them, and it's an automatic success either way.

    But if anyone has any clear, indisputable quotes from rules of official FAQs, I'd love to share them.
    Last edited by mcv; 2013-03-11 at 10:05 AM.

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    Griffon

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    Default Re: [PF] Magic item creation prereqs?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeraa View Post
    The minimum caster level required for the item creation feat has no bearing on the minimum caster level of the item. Otherwise, you would never have caster level 1 Cure Light Wounds potions.

    Also, look at staves, which have a minimum caster level of 8. Craft Staff has requires a minimum caster level of 11th to take.



    If other magical items had minimum caster levels, you would figure that would be noted. But its not.

    (And the Strand of Prayer Beads bead of blessing has a listed CL of 1st, not 3rd like Craft Wondrous Item would require. A few other items are the same way.)
    Good point. Ok, you can make a metamagic rod of caster level less than 9.

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