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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    Dec 2009

    Default Request: An Alternate approach at Magic

    Hello, in an attempt to balance 3.5 for my own purposes I've been reworking it in home-brew, using D&D3.5, and D20 next as the base.

    My goal is to make it focus less on magic, and more on skills and feats, while magic will remain present if not prevalent.
    not going into grave detail, as i haven't gotten there myself, my main dislike of magic in 3.5 and d20 is the spells known/prepared/day of the core casting classes.

    My approach to fix this in theory is, base a magic system off of a warlocks invocations, or a truenamer's Lexicons, separate it into 4 "schools" each with 2 subschools, and 4 "methods" which are reliant on the components of the spells/invocations, each one granting benefits and drawbacks.

    Rather than being just the warlock invocation base, i am considering an expend/refresh mechanic similar to the Tome of battle classes, likely swordsage. Prepared casters would be similar to the eurudite, having unique spells per day/ while having a source of spells like the wizards spell book, so less options to cast each day with more versatility by being able to change their spells each day.

    the 4 schools, and their subschools would be:

    Physical: Evocation, Transmutation
    Mental: Illusion, Enchantment
    Spiritual: Conjuration, Necromancy
    Presence: Auras(akin to marshal), and Vestiges(since they would translate well into invocations)

    The 4 "Methods" would be:

    Spoken: Based on a skill, fastest to use spontaniously, but repeated uses weakens the effects.

    Written: Longest Cast time, however it can be prepared in advance, once prepared, fastest cast time. written spells wouldnt be able to be made into scrolls, though it wouldnt be costly like the creation of scrolls.

    Gestured: Somatic, Not as fast as spoken, but doesnt lose effects on repetition, Draining physically

    Pact: Generally passive benefits (mostly based on vestiges, perhaps soulmelds), chance to lose control to whatever the pact was made with.


    My Request now that i have the concept described, is how many invocations would you give to a spontanious caster like a sorcerer, and for prepared casters like the wizard. What about the classes with less than full progression like a bard, or paladin.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    The Mentalist's Avatar

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    Jan 2009
    Location
    Georgia + Inner World
    Gender
    Male2Female

    Default Re: Request: An Alternate approach at Magic

    I'd go based off the Spells per day list for all of them. (Maybe reverse the Wizard and the Sorcerer's tables), double them if you feel this isn't enough, half them if it's too much. It's a good place to start at least.
    Having trouble writing up hard stat blocks but I'm doing a lot of sharing ideas and soft mechanics lately.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Default Re: Request: An Alternate approach at Magic

    Spellshaping is one of the best magic rewrites I have ever seen. And is based entirely around the concept of spells with ToB mechanics.

    [edit]: How rude of me. I guess I should give advice on your idea just in case spellshaping isn't what you're looking for.

    Sorcerer = 18 invocations (full caster without prep needs more invocations)
    Wizard = 12 invocations (this keeps it balanced because of the fact they can be changed out every day)
    Bard = 16 invocations (needs to keep it's utility since bardic music sucks)
    Cleric = 12 invocations (though you will need to find a way to limit healing)
    Paladin = 12 invocations (it needs a boost since it has so few class features)
    Ranger = 8 invocations (has full BaB and combat, so doesn't need as many options)
    Druid = 8 invocations (druid needs knocked a peg)

    [edit 2]: I assume you also plan to give them an Eldritch Blast. If so I would suggest giving any class with full spellcasting one that tops at 15d6 and give any half or partial casters up to 10d6.

    And as far as avoiding infinite healing with invocations I would recommend a recharge for invocations that heal. Or you could double lay on hands and let it heal status effects as if panacea to give healing to the Cleric (instead of healing invocations).
    Last edited by eftexar; 2013-05-11 at 08:15 PM.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    Dec 2009

    Default Re: Request: An Alternate approach at Magic

    Quote Originally Posted by eftexar View Post
    Spellshaping is one of the best magic rewrites I have ever seen. And is based entirely around the concept of spells with ToB mechanics.

    [edit]: How rude of me. I guess I should give advice on your idea just in case spellshaping isn't what you're looking for.

    Sorcerer = 18 invocations (full caster without prep needs more invocations)
    Wizard = 12 invocations (this keeps it balanced because of the fact they can be changed out every day)
    Bard = 16 invocations (needs to keep it's utility since bardic music sucks)
    Cleric = 12 invocations (though you will need to find a way to limit healing)
    Paladin = 12 invocations (it needs a boost since it has so few class features)
    Ranger = 8 invocations (has full BaB and combat, so doesn't need as many options)
    Druid = 8 invocations (druid needs knocked a peg)

    [edit 2]: I assume you also plan to give them an Eldritch Blast. If so I would suggest giving any class with full spellcasting one that tops at 15d6 and give any half or partial casters up to 10d6.

    And as far as avoiding infinite healing with invocations I would recommend a recharge for invocations that heal. Or you could double lay on hands and let it heal status effects as if panacea to give healing to the Cleric (instead of healing invocations).
    As far as casting classes go I was considering this
    Archivist
    Favored soul/Cleric, Give Favored soul the Turn undead, and a "eldritch blast" similar to the pathfinder cleric channel energy
    Wizard, probably not giving it an eldritch blast, probably boosting it in other ways, such as "metamagic" invocations for free or something. like eldritch essence
    Warlock, probably as is, perhaps more invocations
    Druid, i agree it needs knocked a peg, i thought of giving it the shapeshifter variant, and including some of the nature's warrior abilities gained per level.

    i also considered revisiting the other classes perhaps giving them stances and maneuvers similar to ToB, though probably weaker versions, or just lower level ones. the 2 Classes i was considering majorly reworking was bard, focusing on making it more of a jack of all trades, master of none, and paladin, giving it "auras" similar to the marshal or dragon shaman, based on what stance it was in.

    [edit] I hadnt thought about unlimited healing, though i may just make it rather weak due to some other thoughts about magic. ive been looking into the spellshaping though i havent gotten terribly far yet.

    other than healing, one of my main goals is to lessen the "resources" that are depleted, so a group could go longer without resting. in addition to lowering the over all magic level of the game, because of a campaign setting that's main concept is: Magic is Present not Prevelent

    i would say eberron and iron kingdoms would have the level of magic for the most part, but they just have to much magic(though iron kingdoms is more steampunk)

    i want magic to truely feel fantastical in nature, something that would awe, and where more potent magic requires time, effort, and resources, and potentially the cooperation of others
    Last edited by Xyzima; 2013-05-11 at 08:28 PM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Default Re: Request: An Alternate approach at Magic

    If you aren't overly intent on reworking all of the classes yourself I have a Paladin that works something like what you want. And it comes with a Blackgaurd to boot.
    They are both pretty much done though I will be adding flight to the first and dimension door to the latter in the mid-lower levels.


    [edit]: If you want really low magic you could use Iron Heroes. The arcanist is the only magic class and spells can backfire. Even though most of the basics are the same , it's more different than Pathfinder was from 3.5. And unfortunately I've never had a chance to play it, so I can't attest for balance.
    I've also always been a fan of the Arcana Unearthed books, but they don't really reduce magic at all. Still the classes themselves are better balanced and the spells are more interesting.
    Last edited by eftexar; 2013-05-11 at 08:34 PM.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    Dec 2009

    Default Re: Request: An Alternate approach at Magic

    Quote Originally Posted by eftexar View Post
    If you aren't overly intent on reworking all of the classes yourself I have a Paladin that works something like what you want. And it comes with a Blackgaurd to boot.
    They are both pretty much done though I will be adding flight to the first and dimension door to the latter in the mid-lower levels.
    i appreciate it, another thing im trying to avoid is a multitude of systems within one system, while still offering versatility

    For example, D&D 3.5 has:
    Spells known/spells per day
    Spell slots per day
    Invocations
    Incarnum/soulmelding
    Maneuvers/stances Prepared/expended/known
    Psionics
    Auras Known and active
    Inspiration points
    Vestiges
    Truespeak
    the Shadow one from Tome of magic
    and various others from prestiege classes

    my goal is to make Casters and non casters have a similar mechanic
    while maintaining versatility, i always thought that 4e, the characters were way to similar with their powers.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Default Re: Request: An Alternate approach at Magic

    I wouldn't eliminate too many of them. If you try to go for too few mechanics you will go the way of 4e. Also keep in mind that some subsystems aren't that complicated. Auras, for example, are simple enough I wouldn't even consider them a subsystem.
    Shadowcasting and psionics are similar enough to spellcasting I would port them over to invocations.

    Here is an invocation using soul knife by Garryl.

    MammonAzrael did a pretty good warlock rewrite here.

    And here is a Bard with invocations by RedWarlock.

    I have an older project here that is a remake of shadowcasting and functions similarily to invocations, but it is one of my first classes and truthfully I'm not entirely happy with it.

    I also have a necromancer if you would like to split the cleric into a good and an evil version. It's one of my favorite homebrews I've done so far. It might make things easier on you considering they will use invocations instead of spells.
    Last edited by eftexar; 2013-05-11 at 09:01 PM.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Vancouver BC Canada
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Request: An Alternate approach at Magic


    -From WOTC

    You could play this, spells in combat are "essentially" gone.

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