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    Orc in the Playground
     
    RedKnightGirl

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    Default [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Magic Missile is a really fun spell, and I've always wanted to see a bigger, badder version of the spell, one that creates a salvo of magic missiles. So here's a version of it. Feel free to post your own/suggest things.

    The spell, first draft:

    Improved Magic Missile
    Evocation [Force]
    Level: Magus 4, Sorcerer/Wizard 4

    Casting:
    Time: 1 standard action
    Components: V, S, AF (A platinum sphinx or other coin worth 1 pp/10 gp.)
    Effects:
    Range: Long (400 ft+40 feet/level)
    Targets: Up to one creature/level, no two of which are more than 5 feet/level apart.
    Duration: Instantaneous
    Saving Throw: None
    Spell Resistance: Yes

    A salvo of magic missiles fly forth from your fingertips, whirling about and striking their targets. Each missile deals 1d4+1 points of force damage.

    The missile strikes unerringly, even if the target is in melee combat, so long as it has less than total cover or total concealment. Specific parts of a creature can't be singled out. Objects are not damaged by the spell.

    You create one missile per caster level, with no upper limit on how many missiles can be created. A single missile can strike only one creature, but a single creature can be struck by multiple missiles. You must designate targets before you check for spell resistance or roll damage.

    ---

    Other name ideas included Magic Salvo, and Macross Magic Missiles. I added a focus to make it more comfortably a 4th level spell.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    The Mentalist's Avatar

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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    I'm not sure if it's the same in Pathfinder but I know in 3.5 it's remarkably easy to raise Caster Level and it would make this spell pretty broken but I can't see anything wrong with it outside of such abuses.

    Even with moderate CL upgrades 30d4+30 at level 20 from a fourth level spell is not a frightening thing (until you Twin and Repeat it) Basically it's a target for abuses that are already in place but I don't think that makes the spell itself broken.
    Having trouble writing up hard stat blocks but I'm doing a lot of sharing ideas and soft mechanics lately.

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mentalist View Post
    Even with moderate CL upgrades 30d4+30 at level 20 from a fourth level spell is not a frightening thing (until you Twin and Repeat it)
    Really? What other spell at that (or any) level can do comparable damage without needing to worry about saving throws or high-touch-AC characters?

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Quote Originally Posted by Yitzi View Post
    Really? What other spell at that (or any) level can do comparable damage without needing to worry about saving throws or high-touch-AC characters?
    There is that.

    Edit: Perhaps the more balanced method is just to make it an uncapped Magic Missile 1/2 CL missiles and all.
    Last edited by The Mentalist; 2013-05-09 at 04:07 PM.
    Having trouble writing up hard stat blocks but I'm doing a lot of sharing ideas and soft mechanics lately.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Baron Corm's Avatar

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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    What's wrong with caps? For a level 4 spell capping it at CL 10 makes sense, as it's about as hard to avoid as an orb of force, if you count SR and touch AC as equals.

    Maybe at level 8-9 it could have a cap of 20. Just make sure it doesn't obsolete polar ray.

    If that's no fun, try increasing the cast time to 1 round. That prevents it from being quickened and prevents you from moving after you cast it, so you can increase the damage or lower the spell level a tad. Makes sense as you described it as standing there firing a salvo. Lowering the range to Medium or Close would also make sense in that case. Note that Close range at CL 20 is still 75 feet.

    For the name... missile storm is a good one. Don't look at the balance of that spell though, it's broken.

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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Polar ray is obsolete to begin with.

    Seems... hmm, well against one target it is nice, but spread out it loses the punch. 3.5 average damage matches a d6, but with a tighter fit. Seems like it can turn into a no save just die effect, but with damage.

    I just remember the Issaic's missile storms from NWN slaughtering bosses with 2d6/CL force damage so I may be biased.
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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Quote Originally Posted by bobthe6th View Post
    I just remember the Issaic's missile storms from NWN slaughtering bosses with 2d6/CL force damage so I may be biased.
    Good times, good times.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Quote Originally Posted by bobthe6th View Post
    I just remember the Issaic's missile storms from NWN slaughtering bosses with 2d6/CL force damage so I may be biased.

    I think that was the source of my initial reaction to this effect. I think the problem is that it's uncapped and so easy to get CL boosts (I can think of +10-15 of the top of my head) I really do think that a 1/2 to 3/4CL scale would be perfect for this, it still puts out a storm of missiles but it doesn't become so sickeningly easy to pump out another one that you lay waste to a dragon in a single shot. I mean at least the orb spells provide energy resist to defend against them. (Admittedly you blow through half of it with Searing Spell but you get my point)

    Or! (as thoughts occur to me)

    Provide a post-epic cap (one that non-optimized groups won't really see) and make it a 25 or 30 cap, that way you're still getting the vast horde of missiles and my Powergaming shenanigans can't break it over my knee in quite so many ways. Adding a full round cast time wouldn't hurt that either but it's not going to make it instantly overpowered if you leave it as a standard action.

    Just some suggestions, take what you like, discard what you don't.
    Having trouble writing up hard stat blocks but I'm doing a lot of sharing ideas and soft mechanics lately.

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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Quote Originally Posted by Baron Corm View Post
    What's wrong with caps? For a level 4 spell capping it at CL 10 makes sense, as it's about as hard to avoid as an orb of force, if you count SR and touch AC as equals.
    The problem is, that's only twice as many missiles as magic missile, and it seems to be just as vulnerable to shield/nightshield/etc immunities. Pushing the cap up by 5 missiles is not worth a three-level increase.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Quote Originally Posted by tuggyne View Post
    The problem is, that's only twice as many missiles as magic missile, and it seems to be just as vulnerable to shield/nightshield/etc immunities. Pushing the cap up by 5 missiles is not worth a three-level increase.
    Orb of force is definitely one of the more powerful spells in existence through delivery method alone, so benchmarking it against that is fair even at a high level of play. It's easier to deal crazy damage with metamagic when your starting damage is doubled already.

    I still think that the damage could and should be increased, while increasing the casting time to 1 round. The fact that the delivery method is so perfect means that if you make the damage equal to or greater than similar spells of its level, it automatically outclasses them without further downsides.

    Whether or not a shield spell stops this spell completely is a big factor in determining that, though - I would say it shouldn't as it's a much lower level spell.

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: [PF] Improved Magic Missile

    Quote Originally Posted by Baron Corm View Post
    Orb of force is definitely one of the more powerful spells in existence through delivery method alone, so benchmarking it against that is fair even at a high level of play.
    I think it's more correct to say that benchmarking against that is fair only at a high level of play. Though even Orb of Force will have some difficulty against high-touch-AC characters; this is stopped only by Shield.

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