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- Join Date
- Sep 2012
- Kenosha, Wisconsin, US
Converting PrC's to Spheres of Power
So, as was probably inevitable, I jumped on the bandwagon and got myself a copy of Spheres of Power. For those unaware, it is an alternative system of magic, designed around twenty "spheres", each with a base effect or two along with multiple "talents" to add to or augment the base spheres. These spheres are generally at-will effects, though some require the expenditure of "spell points", roughly analogous to the monk's ki pool.
I absolutely adore the system, but the main complaint I currently have is that some of the classes are rather dull. Now, I could go and rewrite each class to make it more exciting... but I think I can do something a little more interesting. I'm a big fan of the 3.5 variety of Prestige Classes, so I figured I'd go back through my old books, and find 20 different prestige classes, and rework them to fit the various spheres. I've got a few ideas lined up already, but I'd love to hear suggestions as to what classes you'd like to see converted.
In regards to power level: These classes will offer effects on par with the advanced talents. They are recommended for mid- to high-power games only.
List of Classes
- Swiftblade (lower in this post)
So, first in the line-up... The Swiftblade! (Original class found here)
Becoming a Swiftblade
Mageknights make an obvious choice for swiftblades, with martial weapon proficiency and sphere-casting. While their talents and caster level are limited, they make up for it with martial prowess. Incanters can easily enter this class by taking a single level in Fighter or another warrior-type class, though the extreme focus clashes with the incanter's typically generalist nature.
Besides their casting stat, Dexterity is important for swiftblades, as it increases initiative, allowing them to strike first, as well as avoid blows. As with all melee characters, Strength and Constitution are important. In order to capitalize on their mobility, it is suggested to take Acrobatics in order to tumble around the field with ease.
Base Attack Bonus: +3.
Skills: Spellcraft 5 ranks.
Casting: Time sphere (After Image, Improved Haste, Time Freeze)
Feats: Dodge, Mobility.
Weapon Proficiency: Must be proficient with all martial weapons.
Spoiler: Creator NotesI'll be using spoilers like this to share my thoughts on the classes and the changes I have made.
So first off, we have the prerequisites. The first obvious change is changing spell-casting to sphere-casting, requiring the Time sphere for its haste ability that is the cornerstone of the class. The other talents are required due to the various similar abilities granted by the class.
Another big change is that it now requires proficiency with all martial weapons, not merely one. I did so because the sphere-casting system makes CL loss less painful, so it's not as big of a concern to lose 1 level by taking a fighter dip.
I left Dodge and Mobility as the prerequisites mostly because I don't know what I'd put in their place. At least PF's version of Dodge isn't that horrible, compared to 3.5's.
Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Reflex Save Will Save Special Caster Level Talents 1st +1 +0 +2 +2 Casting, Spell Pool, Magic Talents, Chronomastery, Swift Surge (+1 atk/AC/Ref) +0 1 2nd +2 +0 +3 +3 Blurred Alacrity +1 1 3rd +3 +1 +3 +3 Sudden Haste, Bonus Feat +1 2 4th +4 +1 +4 +4 Arcane Reflexes, Swift Surge (+10 ft/+1d6 dmg) +2 2 5th +5 +1 +4 +4 Evasive Celerity +2 3 6th +6 +2 +5 +5 Fortified Hustle, Bonus Feat +3 3 7th +7 +2 +5 +5 Swift Surge (+2 atk/Ac/Ref) +3 4 8th +8 +2 +6 +6 Diligent Rapidity +4 4 9th +9 +3 +6 +6 Perpetual Options, Bonus Feat +4 5 10th +10 +3 +7 +7 Innervated Speed, Swift Surge (+20 ft/+2d6 dmg) +5 5
Hit Dice: d8
The Swiftblade’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are: Acrobatics (Dex), Climb (Str), Knowledge (arcana), Perception (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), and Swim (Str)
Skill Points at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier.
SpoilerThis table gives a few hints about what's to come, but I'll cover most of that later. BAB and saves are unchanged, as are skill points and most of the skills. HD got bumped up 1 step as per PF convention. You'll notice that they are low-casters, but fret not: the Chronomastery ability below changes things.
Casting: A swiftblade may combine spheres and talents to create magical effects. A swiftblade is considered a Low Caster and uses the same casting modifier as his previous class. If he possesses multiple casting modifiers, you may choose which to use for swiftblade (this choice is permanent).
Spell Pool: A swiftblade continues to increase their reservoir of mystic energy. Count each swiftblade level as any previously taken casting class for the purpose of gaining spell points.
Magic Talents: The swiftblade gains a magic talent at first level, and every odd level thereafter.
Chronomastery: A swiftblade treats uses his class level as his caster level with the Time sphere. This stacks normally with caster levels gained from other sources. All swiftblade abilities count as Time sphere abilities for the purposes of caster level and save DC.
SpoilerFairly straightforward. I changed the wording compared to Bokor, mainly to make certain things more clear.
Chronomastery is where it gets interesting. As you can probably guess, I essentially copied this word-for-word from classes such as the Elementalist. I plan for each class to have an ability such as this, allowing them to cast their dedicated sphere as a High Caster, and only as a Low or Mid caster otherwise.
Swift Surge (Ex): You've imbued yourself with so much temporal energy, it's starting to have residual effects. You gain a +1 bonus on attack rolls and a +1 dodge bonus to AC and Reflex saves. These bonuses stack with the bonuses gained from the improved haste talent.
At 7th level, these bonuses increase to +2.
At 4th level, you gain a +10 foot enhancement bonus to all of your modes of movement and deal an extra 1d6 points of damage during any round in which you move at least 10 feet. These bonuses stack with the bonuses gained from the improved haste talent and skirmish ability.
At 10th level, this bonus increases to +20 feet and an extra 2d6 points of damage during any round in which you move at least 20 feet.
SpoilerAs the original, though I cleaned up the formatting some.
Blurred Alacrity (Ex): At 2nd level, while you are under the effects of a haste effect you cast yourself, you gain concealment (20% miss chance against all attacks). This miss chance increases by +10% at 3rd, 4th, and 5th level. The effect of this ability does not stack with other blur effects or similar spells.
SpoilerOnce again, unchanged except to refer to the Time sphere instead of spells.
Sudden Haste (Ex): At 3rd level, you learn to burst into action at any moment. You may spend 1 spell point to use your haste ability on yourself as a swift action. This effect still requires a standard action to concentrate and maintain the effect, unless you spend another spell point as normal to increase the duration to 1 round/CL. This effect cannot be combined with the Group Time talent.
SpoilerThe original ability allowed you to quicken haste 1/round, which doesn't work quite as neatly with Spheres. It now requires a swift action and 1 spell point to do so, and has a range of Personal. A considerable nerf, though the class makes up for it in the end.
Bonus Feats: At 3rd level, and every 3 levels thereafter, you gain a bonus feat from the list of combat feats, or any feat which has casting as a prerequisite (Craft Item feats, metamagic feats, sphere focus, Circle Casting, etc.).
SpoilerI've said it many times and I'll say it again: any class designed to fight directly needs bonus feats.
Arcane Reflexes (Ex): At 4th level, you infuse the energy of previous haste castings into your natural reaction time. You receive a competence bonus on initiative rolls equal to your casting ability modifier.
SpoilerLegacy ability. Unchanged.
Evasive Celerity (Ex): At 5th level, you become quick enough to even dodge magic itself. While under the effect of a haste effect that you cast yourself, individually targeted magical abilities (such as supernatural abilities, spells, sphere abilities, or SLA's) have a 20% chance of failing against you. This spell failure chance increases by +10% at 6th, 7th, and 8th level. This effect does not stack with blink or any other effect that can nullify spells.
SpoilerLegacy ability. Unchanged.
Fortified Hustle (Ex): At 6th level, you learn how to intuitively absorb the haste effect into your body. While under the effect of a haste effect that you cast yourself, the effect becomes extraordinary rather than a continuous magical effect, and therefore cannot be dispelled by any means. The haste effect otherwise functions as it normally would, is expended normally, and can be countered as normal at the moment of casting.
SpoilerLegacy ability. It's kinda boring, though, and I'd love to hear an idea to replace it.
Diligent Rapidity (Ex): At 8th level, you automatically overcome magic and mundane obstacles with haste. While under the effect of a haste effect that you cast yourself, you can move and attack normally, even under the influence of magic that usually impedes movement, as the freedom of movement spell. As an additional effect, you can also move across the surface of placid or flowing water, but not whitewater rapids or stormy water, by making two move actions in a round. You immediately sink any time you make a single move action in a round or come to a complete stop while traversing water.
SpoilerAgain, unchanged from the original. This is a potent ability to be sure, and one which is difficult to replicate with sphere casting
Perpetual Options (Ex): At 9th level, you can perform even more actions with haste. Instead of making one extra attack at your highest base attack bonus while under the effect of a haste spell that you cast yourself, you now have the choice of making one extra move action or one extra standard action. For example, you could make three consecutive move actions with this ability, two move actions and one standard action, one move action and two standard actions, a full attack action and a move action, a full attack action and a standard action, a full round action and a move action, or a full round action and a standard action.
SpoilerOnce more, unchanged ability. When applied to standard spell casting, this is very very powerful. However, I feel it is much more manageable with sphere casting. If this is too much, I might consider adding in an extra spell point cost (either at the time of casting or each time you take an extra action).
Innervated Speed (Ex): At 10th level, your mastery of the temporal magic can bring the world around you to a standstill. By spending 3 spell points as a standard action, you may create an effect similar to the time freeze talent, except as follows: it offers no save, you must choose to exclude yourself from the effect, it affects all of reality (infinite range), and for each additional 3 spell points you spend on this ability, the duration increases by 1 round.
SpoilerNow this is true mastery over time! The most infamous of temporal spells, the legendary Time Stop!
This... may be kinda overpowered. It has an extremely large cost in terms of spell points, and buff effects aren't nearly as bad in sphere-casting as with spells. That being said, it's still very strong.
And there you have it! I welcome critique and suggestions of all sorts, so please leave a comment or two!
Last edited by Mcdt2; 2015-05-31 at 08:10 PM.When in doubt, homebrew.
If that doesn't work, use more homebrew.
Need more homebrew? Check out my Extended Homebrewer's Signature!
- Join Date
- Aug 2011
- Ellensburg, WA
Re: Converting PrC's to Spheres of Power
So this is Adam Meyers, the maker of Spheres of Power. I was told I should check out Gitp's forum, and I'm excited to see what everyone's been doing with the system! I like the PrC a lot, thanks for posting it.
- Join Date
- Sep 2012
- Kenosha, Wisconsin, US
Re: Converting PrC's to Spheres of Power
"Of the classical elements, fire is by far the most primal. The most challenging. The most dangerous. The most transforming. The most visceral. The most fun. Seriously, which enemies would cower in their tracks if you appeared in front of them and proclaimed yourself to be a great water wizard? - Darths and Droids #739
"Of course you should fight fire with fire. You should fight everything with fire." — Jaya Ballard, Task Mage
"It's as true now as when I started adventuring - 'when in doubt, set something on fire.' " — Belkar Bitterleaf
As countless adventurers from every age can tell you, few things in this world are as deadly or entertaining than fire, and lots of it. Pyromaniacs are the epitome of this philosophy, though a layman would probably have trouble telling them apart from the average adventurer. Only a true connoisseur of fire would notice the art in a pyromaniac's work, the subtle brushes made in each tongue of flame.
Becoming a Pyromaniac
Elementalists are an obvious choice for pyromaniacs, thanks to their advantages when casting Destruction abilities. Incanters, especially Destruction specialists, are also an obvious choice. Very rarely, a mageknight will branch out from martial combat in order to focus more heavily on combat magic.
Besides a healthy respect for the deadliest element, there are few requirements to become a pyromaniac. Naturally, your casting ability is of utmost importance, in order to fling as much fire as you can, but everything else is secondary. Some would prefer high Dexterity to make sure they can hit with their ranged attacks, and other might prefer Strength and then engulf their blades in flame.
Casting: Destruction sphere (Energy Weapon, Fire Blast), Caster level 3rd.
Special: Must have set fire to something simply to watch it burn.
SpoilerSo, as may be obvious this is my take on the XPH's Pyrokineticist. It is very loosely based on it, because quite frankly the original was garbage. Anyway, on to the new version:
The prerequisites are intentionally easy, as I want it to be easy for any character to enter and begin blasting like a pro. Fire blast is an obvious choice for a prerequisite. Energy Weapon is there because an early ability gives an enhanced version of that talent. I went with CL 3 because Mid casters could enter this class by level 5, and low casters by 7th level.
Now, I chose fire for the default energy type because it's the weakest and in need of the most support. Conversion should be fairly simple, though I'd suggest limiting it to acid, air, frost, and possibly thunder. Most abilities work for any element with some refluffing and simple swapping of text. Lingering Burn is the most awkward; I'll probably come up with examples of replacement abilities at some later point.
Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Reflex Save Will Save Special Caster Level Talents 1st +0 +2 +2 +0 Casting, Spell Pool, Magic Talents, Pyromania, Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation (Resist 10; +4 vs heat) +0 0 2nd +1 +3 +3 +0 Blazing Dash +1 1 3rd +2 +3 +3 +1 Burning Blade, Split Blast +2 2 4th +3 +4 +4 +1 Lingering Burn, Fire Adaptation (Resist 15; +6 vs heat) +3 3 5th +3 +4 +4 +1 Balefire +3 3 6th +4 +5 +5 +2 Blazing Wings +4 4 7th +5 +5 +5 +2 Fire Adaptation (Resist 10, +8 vs heat) +5 5 8th +6 +6 +6 +2 Precise Pyre +6 6 9th +6 +6 +6 +3 Shifting Inferno +6 6 10th +7 +7 +7 +3 Heart of Flame, Fire Adaptation (Immunity) +7 7
Hit Dice: d8
The Pyromaniac’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are: Acrobatics (Dex), Climb (Str), Intimidate (Cha), Spellcraft (Int)
Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Int modifier.
SpoilerBasically copied right from the original, but converted to PF skills. It's a kinda random list of skills, but I don't now what else should go here.
Casting: A pyromaniac may combine spheres and talents to create magical effects. A pyromaniac is considered a Mid Caster and uses the same casting modifier as her previous class. If she possesses multiple casting modifiers, you may choose which to use for pyromaniac (this choice is permanent).
Spell Pool: A pyromaniac continues to increase her reservoir of mystic energy. Count each pyromaniac level as any previously taken casting class for the purpose of gaining spell points.
Magic Talents: The pyromaniac gains a magic talent every time they gain a caster level.
Pyromania: A pyromaniac treats uses her class level as her caster level with the Destruction sphere. This stacks normally with caster levels gained from other sources. All class abilities of the pyromaniac use their caster level with Destruction, if it is higher. All pyromaniac abilities count as Destruction sphere abilities for the purposes of caster level and save DC.
Spoiler4 abilities spelling out exactly how their casting works. As with Swiftblade, Pyromania allows them to count as a High-Caster for their specific sphere. Pyros are mid-casters for other spheres because elementalists are, not much else to it
Fire Lash (Su): As a move action, you may form a 15 foot-long whip of pure fire. You take no damage from holding this lash, and it lasts as long as you hold it. The lash may be used as a weapon, making melee touch attacks at a range of 15 feet. This attack deals 2d6 fire damage, plus your casting modifier. This weapon counts as a whip for all other purposes, including Weapon Focus and Weapon Specialization. You are proficient with this weapon.
SpoilerA legacy ability, but one which is considerably buffed, with the damage going up from 1d8 to 2d6+modifier. It's worth noting that it can attack adjacent enemies. This ability gives the pyro an excellent source of repeatable damage that doesn't provoke and isn't subject to SR.
Fire Adaptation (Ex): A pyromaniac gains some measure of protection against fire, gain Fire Resistance 10 and +4 to all saves versus fire or heat effects. At 4th level, these increase to Resist 15 and +6, respectively; at 7th level they have Resist 20 and +8 to the relevant saves. At 10th level, pyromaniacs are entirely immune to fire and heat effects, as well as fire damage.
SpoilerAgain, a buffed legacy ability. Available sooner and scaling more smoothly, it now also grants immunity at level 10. Makes any lesser fire mage rather wary of fighting this guy, that's for sure.
Blazing Dash (Su): At second level, you may move up to your land speed as a swift action. You may move up or down through the air as part of this movement, but if you end this movement not on solid ground, you fall and take falling damage as appropriate.
SpoilerInspired by the Incanter's Destruction specialist ability, Blazing Dash gives some useful mobility to the class. Compared to the Incanter's "Movement Burst", this one is at will with a speed that is probably lower, but it is clearer on exactly what happens if you use the ability to travel upwards (as Movement Burst does state "any direction", which should include up/down)
Burning Blade (Sp): At third level, you may, as a swift action, spend 1 spell point to add your destructive blast (with fire blast type) damage to all melee attacks you make with a single chosen weapon for 1 round. If you choose to augment your unarmed attack, you count as being armed while using it. You may apply this ability to your Fire Lash, since it counts as a weapon.
SpoilerThis ability worries me a little, honestly. On one hand, this is an awful lot of damage (potentially up to 80d6 at level 20 on an elementalist or incanter 10/pyromaniac 10 with a haste effect active, more with CL boosting effects). On the other hand, spending the 2 spell points a turn to do so is pretty expensive, and it's awful risky for a caster to hang out in melee like that.
Split Blast: At third level, you may choose to split your destructive blast between multiple targets. You may reduce your effective caster level for destructive blast by 2 in order to add an additional target. You make a separate attack roll for each target, and they take full damage if hit (after accounting for reduced caster level). You cannot reduce your caster level below half its original value in this way.
SpoilerI took the idea for this from a warlock rewrite by T.G. Oskar. It may come a little later, but ranged blasters now have a bit of an easier time doing their jobs. Overall, each target will take less damage, but it's a lot cheaper then spamming the various blast shapes.
Lingering Burn: At fourth level, creatures which catch on fire as a result of your destructive blast take far more damage if they don't put out the flames. Enemies that catch on fire take an additional +1d6 damage each round for each four caster levels.
Balefire: At fifth level, pyromaniacs finally learn to partially overcome their most annoying of foes -- fire resistance. Your destructive blast now deals half fire damage and half pure energy damage that cannot be resisted by any means when you apply the fire blast talent. This pure energy damage still deals extra damage to creatures vulnerable to fire, and overcomes regeneration as though it was fire damage. This ability also applies to other Pyromaniac abilities which deal fire damage.
SpoilerNow here's some real power. The biggest issue fire mages have is that fire resistance is absurdly common amongst standard monsters. With this, every blast they make becomes a mini flame strike, but better. Essentially, half the damage still gets all the benefits of being fire damage and none of the drawbacks.
Blazing Wings (Su): At sixth level, you learn to take to the skies for longer periods of time using jets of flame. As a standard action, you may grant yourself a fly speed equal to your land speed. This effect lasts for as long as you concentrate on it, but you may spend 1 spell point to allow it to last for 1 minute per caster level without concentration.
SpoilerI like to envision the amazing fire-jets used in A:tlA during the finale for this ability, but a more classic form such as fire wings work too. Adds some nice mobility, building off of the earlier Blazing Dash.
Precise Pyre: At eighth level, you gain the ability to sculpt your destructive blasts with enough precision to protect your allies from friendly fire. Whenever you use a destructive blast with an area (typically as a result of applying a blast shape such as [/i]explosive orb[/I]), you may choose any number of creatures to not be affected. If the ability has a duration longer than instantaneous, then this immunity lasts the entire duration, allowing the chosen creature to move in and out of the area without penalty or damage.
SpoilerThis comes a little late, but it's a nice benefit nonetheless. Now, you no longer need worry when placing your explosive orbs or energy walls, because your allies will just casually ignore them.
Shifting Inferno: At ninth level, you may add both the fire blast talent and one other blast type to your destructive blast. Half of the damage is fire (apply your balefire ability to this half only) and the other half does damage according to the chosen blast type. Add any and all additional effects of the applied blast types. If used with the stone blast talent, for example, half the damage becomes slashing, piercing, or bludgeoning, one quarter of the damage becomes fire, one quarter becomes pure energy damage (as balefire), and the entire effect bypasses spell resistance, anti-magic fields, and so forth.
SpoilerThis one is kinda complicated, and probably takes away from the theme a little, but I liked it too much and I couldn't think of anything better to put in this level. I imagine a mage using this ability to do some improbably things with their fire, such as drawing heat from one part of the body to another (combining with frost blast) or conjuring balls of magma (combining with stone blast or crystal blast).
Heart of Flame (Su): At tenth level, you learn to tap into the purest fires deep within your soul. Once per day as a standard action, you may enter a form composed of pure fire. When you do so, you may create a [i]destructive blast[i/] effect with the explosive orb blast shape and fire blast blast type applied to it, centered on yourself. This costs no spell points, but acts as though you spent a spell point to increase the damage of the destructive blast.
Whether you create an explosive orb effect or not, you then become incorporeal for a number of rounds equal to your casting modifier. While incorporeal in this way, you gain a fly speed of 90 feet (perfect), and 1 virtual spell point each round, which can only be spent on Destruction talents or Pyromaniac abilities. A virtual spell point functions exactly as a standard spell point, except it only lasts 1 round and disappears if not used in that time.
Lastly, you may spend 4 spell points as a standard action to cause a single creature within Close range to be overwhelmed with a sudden inner fire. They must make a Fortitude save or die. On a successful save, they take 1d6 fire damage per CL. In either case, you immediately revert to your normal form.
SpoilerAnd here's our capstone. Powerful defense, mobility, and a free blast so your action isn't wasted if the enemy dies before you can use this power to its fullest. The virtual spell point helps reduce costs, which is helpful for the Destruction sphere since its so heavy on costs. And lastly, you can spend a boat-load of SP and end the form to get a straight up save or die. This sort of thing is rare in Spheres of Power, but I think it's okay to have after 10 levels. It's certainly not as powerful as the Swiftblade's capstone, that's for sure.
Prerequisites: Favored Element, Pyromania
Benefits: Your levels in pyromaniac count as elementalist levels for the purpose of determining your bonus for the Favored Element class feature.
Last edited by Mcdt2; 2015-05-31 at 08:12 PM.When in doubt, homebrew.
If that doesn't work, use more homebrew.
Need more homebrew? Check out my Extended Homebrewer's Signature!