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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Dezea's Avatar

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    Default An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Hey guys,

    I wanted to know If any of you would have advice to deal with a hard situation.

    I'm playing a lvl 18 sorcerer in a Pathfinder settings, and I am, actually, staging a coup. Some friends of mine is actually going to take over the country, and after lot's and lot's of political Shenanigans and using hidden backdoor of the law, we found a way to depose the actual kings without resorting to a huge bloodshed, our character being ambitious but not evil.

    This is a situation : I need to round up 8 lords in front of a parlement, at the same time, in order to have them ratify the election of a new ruler. (You guessed who that ruler will be).

    Sadly, they are well aware that my friend is plotting, can't take too many obvious action to block him - Because of other faction at play - and made sure to be each well protected in a castle far away for the parliament.

    So, here what need to happens : I need in a 10 minutes times to subdue them all and get them back to the parliament. As a very high level character, this should be easy, but here comes the problem :

    - I'm alone and, for reasons too long to develop, can't really have any help
    - This should be done in a very short frame of time, not giving them any way to realize what is happening
    - Each one of them is in his own private castle, far from each other by at least 100km.
    - All of those castle are protected from Divination, and two of them are protected from Divination AND teleportation
    - At least half of them are truly competent fighter (lvl 9-12) and one of them is a very high level fighter (16-18)
    - All of them are used to magical shenanigans, and it should be expected that they have magic items boosting save, offering escape, etc.

    ...So, as you can see, the odds are not especially in my favor, even given the overwhelming power of a high-level sorcerer.

    Too help with this, here is my full spell list :

    9th (5/day)—time stop
    8th (8/day)—maze, mind blank, moment of prescience, polymorph any object (DC 35), power word stun
    7th (8/day)—limited wish, greater scrying (DC 30), spell turning, greater teleport
    6th (8/day)—contingency, disintegrate (DC 33), greater heroism, true seeing, wall of iron
    5th (8/day)—baleful polymorph (DC 32), dominate person (DC 28), feeblemind (DC 28), overland flight, telekinesis (DC 32)
    4th (9/day)—dimension door, enervation, greater invisibility, resilient sphere (DC 27), scrying (DC 27), stoneskin
    3rd (9/day)—dispel magic, fly, haste, greater magic weapon, slow (DC 30)
    2nd (9/day)—darkvision, glitterdust (DC 25), invisibility, mirror image, rope trick, scorching ray
    1st (9/day)—detect secret doors, enlarge person (DC 28), identify, magic missile, ray of enfeeblement (DC 24), silent image (DC 24)
    0 (at will)—arcane mark, daze (DC 23), detect magic, detect poison, ghost sound (DC 23), light, mage hand, message, ray of frost

    Any idea on how to do this ? I have one weeks ahead of time to plan, but it's short, and probably to short to come up with a good excuse for them to leave all of their protection behind.

    Thanks for your help, and my apologize for my english, wich is definitely not my mother tongue ! :D
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  2. - Top - End - #2
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    I can't contribute much, but I just wanted to mention that this campaign sounds awesome.
    Quote Originally Posted by KKL
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  3. - Top - End - #3
    Colossus in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    My very first thought was, "Do you have 40,000 XP you're willing to spend on this?" because a wish's relocation function ignores a lot of anti-teleport and anti-scrying stuff. But you don't have wish, so that's not an option. My second and third ideas involved illusion spells you don't have. As did my fourth.

    Then I saw a couple of gems on your spell list that will help: dominate person and polymorph any object.

    You're going to want co-conspirators - willing, preferably, with some unwilling ones dominated as the needs may arise.

    Careful timing will be required: get conspirators - dominated, bribed, or otherwise cooperative - who are known to be members of the staffs of the nobles. Ones who are believably able to claim they were at the nobles' castles where said nobles are secreted away. Using any means at your disposal, incapacitate any security personnel who can use true seeing or other means of penetrating a magical disguise on-site.

    Replace them with creations made by polymorph any object, whether turning objects into duplicates of them, or turning co-conspirators (even just some random actors hired from a performing troupe) into them via that spell. The duration, cast on members of the same race, should be more than sufficient.

    Now, do the same to create doubles for the eight nobles you need. I don't know the specifics of what you require from them, but you can work out a mix of believable and required behavior with your doubles by simply ensuring that the underlying person - if there is one - is sufficiently allied to you to pull off the deception.

    The members of the staffs of the eight nobles whom you co-opted to work for you have a job of spreading a rumor that the nobles have disappeared from their safehouse castles. Some should do this quietly, while others might burst in in a panic during parliament itself to say "Lord Fonteroy has disappeared! --oh, there he is." Essentially, use the isolation of these nobles to your advantage to spread rumor and innuendo and false belief where parliament is happening that the nobles have been somehow whisked away from their redoubts.

    With your eight impostors present, it fits together: they vanished from where they were because, obviously, they're here now.

    Your co-opted/replaced magic-detectors, those who would be turned to to check for polymorphed doppelgangers or illusions or the like, will testify that the nobles you present before parliament are the real ones.

    The real nobles, safely sequestered in their castles, won't even know it's happening. But you'll get the new King crowned by all the laws that the Court at the Capitol believes need to be followed, and those eight nobles will be left sputtering and claiming, "I never left here! Honest!"

    If your legal requirements don't actually need those eight nobles to be cooperative, have the fakes tied up and gagged or otherwise showing that they do NOT WANT TO BE THERE. Leave them somewhere, with at least a few of them together, in a place where your fake nobles can be overheard conspiring to spread a claim that they weren't here. "They can't prove this was us," one will say in earshot of people who need to be fooled. "We'll claim that these were fakes, and that he never did really steal us from our castles."

    Be ready with more polymorph any object or simple silent image spells, or a wand of nystul's magic aura to further muddy the waters by using it on the real nobles if they go somewhere to prove they're the real ones. Let the magics be easily seen through/detected to identify those nobles as "fakes."

    Finally, any who leave their castles, have captured by people loyal to you. They may be coming out to combat your claim to the throne, but if they do, you have them in hand for a real parliamentary coup. So if your house of cards becomes in danger of collapse, bend your political influence to say "fine, if they want to play it that way, you SAW us capture them THIS time; let's do it again just so there's no question," and make it look like you're granting a major concession for the sake of stability or somesuch.


    The key to this is their isolation. If you press them such that they isolate themselves harder, it becomes impossible for them to know what's going on in the capitol when you perform your coup, and it becomes impossible for them to prove they really were in their castles. All you need is to convince the kingdom that you had them there. You don't need the real ones, as long as they can't prove - or convince enough people - that they really weren't.

  4. - Top - End - #4
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    So you need to subdue these lords in the span of 10 minutes? Do you need unanimous? If not, just grab 5. How many days do you have to prepare and could you learn any spells/access any spellbooks?

    How far is the barrier of no teleportation? Just teleport outside the castle and fly in. You need to be familiar otherwise you will land off target. If you don't know the places, start scrying mooks nearby and get an idea of where to land. Otherwise, teleport as close as you can in

    At the start of the day cast overland flight, and cast stoneskin on yourself just before you begin your adventure. You need greater teleport as your 7th level spell barring access to those unless you make scrolls. For actually capturing the baddies, I would use power word stun(you have one for each person) and just tie them up-hit them with scorching ray or magic missile to soften them up, then stun them long enough to grapple/pin/tie up. They will be denied their dex bonus and you get a +4 to grapple so even being a wizard should work. If that does not work, then baleful polymorph them into something, and throw them in a cage. You can always dispel the spell later. Dominate would also work, but the baleful has a higher DC(although fighters have a stronger fort so will might be the best), so prepare which one you want for your 5th level spell(besides overland flight). If hurting them badly or killing a couple is an option, disentegrate is decent. I would contingency resilent sphere or mirror image, some defensive spell. Greater invisiblity is good for times you need to fly/run past guards, as is Ddoor. Enervation gives another option to combo with stunning and weakening. Unless you can fool guards with silent image, I would probably just prepare magic missile as your 1st level slot. You can always time stop and either buff up defenses like invis/mirror image, or run or regroup.

    Prepare just dispel magic for all of your 3rd level slots for utility.

    What familiar do you have, and other magic items/ weapons? What skills do you have? How much gold do you have for material components.
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  5. - Top - End - #5
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    There's a lot of good here.

    Segev, I do really like your view on the matters here, and I must admit that setting the noble up in such a situation would be pretty much a no-win situation for them.

    To be honest, having them REALLY be here in person would be a major plus, even If once they'r here they will indeed be "Strongly advised" to sign whatever need signing.

    Geddy : Yup, I sadly need unanimous, as required to depose a King in that settings. I got one weeks to prepare, and, sadly, as a sorcerer can't learn any more spell. (Tho I could propably find a wand or a staves if I really needed one)

    After some trying, I found the barrier to be about 5 meter from the castle, allowing me to fly inside it, yup. I do like your idea on fighting them, I must admit that i'm really afraid of falling short of spell available if i'm to using 5 or 6 levels spell on each of them, with some probably able to save once or twice. Balefuling them is probably the best option, tho !
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    RogueGuy

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    I would try really hard to grab a scroll of wish or two. It would be expensive, but the risk of a single lord saying "I'm gonna hide and let lord X,Y, and Z deal with this upstart." is too real to not have a contingency designed to remove them by absolute force if needed. You can't miss any of them.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Oh, derp! You are a sorcerer as you said in the OP. (that was a LOT of spells per day, should have cued me in)

    Well, that means you have all options on the table on the fly, which is nice.

    At level 12, with a +4 cloak of resistance and a +5 in DEX/con/wis, a figher has a 17/13/13 for saves, which is probably way higher than they actually have. A DC 32 baleful polymorph means they need a 15 on the dice to pass With a DC28 dominate, that is also a 15 on the dice. That's a 70% chance to work, and their saves are probably lower. Unless they have true seeing, mirror image will protect you for a couple rounds as will being in the air. You can spam scorching ray/magic missile till they are close to death, and then either get their surrender, KO them, or stun/tie em up. You can always throw up resilent sphere/time stop if need be. A wand of cure light wounds might be nice to top off should you be damaged in a fight, and a wand/scroll of false life might not be a bad idea either.

    What is your gear loadout? Bloodline/powers? Spare gold available? Stats? Skills? You could always try asking them nicely.
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  8. - Top - End - #8
    Colossus in the Playground
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    You can Limited Wish Geas them, though it's probably prudent to be prepared to disable any protective magic items they might have. Geas gives no save but they might have a source of immunity. Time Stop for entering 100% undetected, definitely. Of course invisible and flying. Etherealness would be nice but c'est la vie. Subduing them should be easy after you find them.

    Perhaps some Polymorphed replacement servants could get you information on the castle layout. Domination would certainly get found out. Charm? Well, you can juat personally check them before you actually go in. Between Time Stop and mobility, this should go relatively undetected. Invis > Fly > Haste > Teleport (or Time Stop > Teleport if going inside). Perhaps polymorph into some fast, hard to detect form too.

    Edit: Wait, you have neither Greater Dispel Magic nor Disjunction?! Well, I guess you CAN always just disable them and remove any protective amulets or such they may have.
    Last edited by Eldariel; 2017-09-06 at 11:51 AM.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Hm... This is flagged as PF, so the real question is: What subsystems are in?

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Colossus in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    What are the specific requirements you have to fulfill to get the coup to work?

    Is it 8 signatures on one document? 8 people in one place? 8 people giving a verbal "yes" vote? Some combination of these?

    I'm asking you to describe precisely what legally has to happen for it to "count," please. I do think my fake nobles plan is your best bet, just because it leaves them as the ones who have to ACTIVELY stop you, and possibly not KNOWING they have to do so. But depending on the requirements, there may be other ways.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    They do all need to sign a treaty, officialy deposing the actual king.

    Fact is, pretty much everyone but them want the king deposed, and they don't have any good reason to avoid him being deposed, except for personal interest. Thus, they know that every noble in the country is required to be present for the king to be deposed, and their strategy has been to keep finding excuses making them unable to get to the capitol - Some of them being actually quite real, like fear from assassination, wich could actually really be a thing, or a war in their duchy but that's another matter.

    All of this being said, If they were for ANY reason bring into the parliement, in front of the people and their peers, and still refuse to depose the kings, It would be pretty bad for them... So we'r pretty much at this point relying on the fact that they will be obliged to...Oblige.

    If we use magic and an actor, I don't doubt it will work for deposing the king, but It would also pretty much turn into a civil war, and rightly so. I know that subduing them seems pretty severe already, but from a public opinion standpoint it would made a huge difference. We want a kingdom, and we would really have it being governable but if there is no other way around, your solution does indeed work, and elegantly at that.

    Thanks for all your help, once again.

    To answer some question : It's PF-Core only (Sadly), and I do really like the Limited-Wish Geas, actually.

    The absence of Wish is indeed sad, but as an Arcane Sorcerer getting wish for free at level 19, I didn't want to pick it as a level 18 spells. And I confirm that lacking greater dispell has been a pain in the ass :<

    I can probably manage to get 150K gold easily, more if absolutely neccessary by selling some magic items (A kingdom is indeed worth some stuff ;o).

    Here is a more detailed view of my sorcerer :

    --------------------
    Defense
    --------------------
    AC 32, touch 21, flat-footed 24 (+6 armor, +3 deflection, +4 Dex, +4 dodge, +5 natural)
    hp 254 (19d6+135); fast healing 10
    Fort +18, Ref +17, Will +25; +4 morale bonus vs. charm and fear, +8 resistance bonus vs. mind-affecting
    Immune fear; SR 24
    --------------------
    Offense
    --------------------
    Speed 30 ft., fly 60 ft. (perfect)
    Melee karzoug's burning glaive +18/+13 (1d10+5/×3 plus 1d6 fire) or
    staff of mithral might +18/+13 (1d6+5)
    Ranged mwk light crossbow +22 (1d8+4/19-20)
    Space 5 ft.; Reach 5 ft. (10 ft. with karzoug's burning glaive)
    Sorcerer Spells Known (CL 19th; concentration +31)
    9th (5/day)—time stop
    8th (8/day)—maze, mind blank, moment of prescience, polymorph any object (DC 35), power word stun
    7th (8/day)—limited wish, greater scrying (DC 30), spell turning, greater teleport
    6th (8/day)—contingency, disintegrate (DC 33), greater heroism, true seeing, wall of iron
    5th (8/day)—baleful polymorph (DC 32), dominate person (DC 28), feeblemind (DC 28), overland flight, telekinesis (DC 32)
    4th (9/day)—dimension door, enervation, greater invisibility, resilient sphere (DC 27), scrying (DC 27), stoneskin
    3rd (9/day)—dispel magic, fly, haste, greater magic weapon, slow (DC 30)
    2nd (9/day)—darkvision, glitterdust (DC 25), invisibility, mirror image, rope trick, scorching ray
    1st (9/day)—detect secret doors, enlarge person (DC 28), identify, magic missile, ray of enfeeblement (DC 24), silent image (DC 24)
    0 (at will)—arcane mark, daze (DC 23), detect magic, detect poison, ghost sound (DC 23), light, mage hand, message, ray of frost
    Bloodline Arcane
    --------------------
    Statistics
    --------------------
    Str 9, Dex 18, Con 18, Int 14, Wis 12, Cha 35
    Base Atk +9; CMB +16; CMD 29
    Feats Alertness, Combat Casting, Empower Spell, Eschew Materials, Greater Spell Focus (transmutation), Greater Spell Penetration, Improved Familiar, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Maximize Spell, Quicken Spell, Skill Focus (Perception), Spell Focus (transmutation), Spell Penetration, Still Spell, Toughness
    Skills Acrobatics +8, Appraise +6, Bluff +38, Climb +3, Craft (tattoo) +6, Diplomacy +16, Disguise +16, Escape Artist +8, Fly +16, Heal +5, Intimidate +16, Knowledge (arcana) +30, Knowledge (history) +27, Knowledge (nobility) +32, Perception +39, Ride +10, Sense Motive +7, Spellcraft +29, Stealth +8, Survival +5, Swim +3, Use Magic Device +38
    Languages Common, Infernal, Orc
    SQ arcane bond (Hex, faerie dragon), bloodline arcana (+1 DC for metamagic spells that increase spell level), metamagic adept (5/day), new arcana, school power (transmutation)
    Combat Gear greater quicken metamagic rod, lesser empower metamagic rod, potion of cure light wounds, potion of eagle's splendor (2), potion of hide from animals, potion of hide from undead, robe of runes, silent metamagic rod, staff of fire, staff of mithral might[UE], wand of cure light wounds, wand of legend lore (50 charges); Other Gear karzoug's burning glaive, mwk light crossbow, belt of mighty constitution +4, bracers of armor +5, dark blue rhomboid ioun stone, deep red sphere ioun stone, eyes of the eagle, glove of storing, headband of alluring charisma +6, helm of telepathy, major ring of cold resistance, pearly white spindle ioun stone, revelation quill, ring of mind shielding, ring of sustenance, robes of xin-shalast, runewell amulet, sihedron medallion, sihedron ring, slippers of spider climbing, masterwork thieves' tools, noble's outfit, 3 pp, 58,004 gp, 3,455 sp
    --------------------
    Special Abilities
    --------------------
    Bloodline Arcana: Arcane (Ex) When a spell level is increased by a metamagic feat, it gains +1 DC.
    Combat Casting +4 to Concentration checks to cast while on the defensive.
    Deliver Touch Spells Through Familiar (Su) Your familiar can deliver touch spells for you.
    Empathic Link with Familiar (Su) You have an empathic link with your Arcane Familiar.
    Empower Spell Numeric effects of a spell are increased 50%. +2 Levels.
    Eschew Materials Cast spells without materials, if component cost is 1 gp or less.
    Familiar Bonus: You gain the Alertness feat while your familiar is within arm's reach.
    Fast Healing 10 (Ex) Heal damage every round unless you are killed.
    Fly (60 feet, Perfect) You can fly!
    Greater Spell Focus (Transmutation) +1 to the Save DC of spells from one school.
    Immunity to Fear (Ex) You are immune to all fear effects.
    Maximize Spell All variable effects of a spell are maximized. +3 Levels.
    Metamagic Adept (5/day) (Ex) Apply a metamagic feat without increasing the casting time of the spell.
    New Arcana - level (4) (Ex) Add 1 spell to your list of spells known
    Quicken Spell Cast a spell as a swift action. +4 Levels.
    School Power (Transmutation) (Ex) Add +2 to the DC of spells from the Transmutation school.
    Scry on Familiar (1/day) (Sp) You can scry on your familiar, as the spell.
    Share Spells with Familiar Can cast spells with a target of "You" on the familiar with a range of touch.
    Speak with Familiar (Ex) You can communicate verbally with your familiar.
    Spell Focus (Transmutation) Spells from one school of magic have +1 to their save DC.
    Spell Resistance (24) You have Spell Resistance.
    Still Spell You can cast a spell with no somatic components. +1 Level.
    Avatar made by Linklele.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Beholder

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Coerce them using blackmail. If you don't have any blackmail, use Dominate Person and/or Polymorph Any Object to... "acquire" some.
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    If your allied nobles can be persuaded to take the time for this, you could go on an extended road trip and take all the other nobles to the recalcitrant ones, one at a time. Use each one's excuses as an excuse for your visit. "We're besieged and have to defend our Duchy!" "Oh, here, let the united forces of the other nobility help you with that!" "I'm afraid of assassins!" "We shall bring our finest bodyguards and investigators to root them out for you!" "My crops need my supervision for harvesting!" "We shall bring our militias to help you with the harvest."

    Get each signature in person, carting the treaty from point to point.

    Alternatively, just abdicate the King. Dominate person or something to have him do it, and then keep him sequestered. Now the existing nobles who aren't hiding can appoint you Regent or something, and you can rule anyway.


    It sounds like it'll be civil war no matter what you do, though, unless you can depose or confine the recalcitrant nobles. Even if they are coerced into signing, if they can get back to their power bases, they can claim they didn't.

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    You mentioned you want to avoid huge bloodshed, and that the current king and these 8 people don't have the support of the people. How about some light bloodshed, where you kill anyone that doesn't do what you say until they make you king? They're avoiding it for personal interest, so being threatened with death should be a pretty good motivator for people who don't seem to have any real honor.

    Optionally, retrain one of your spells to animate dead and raise an undead horde to help you do it, because if you're a sorcerer taking over a kingdom, style counts. Rule atop a mountain of the shattered corpses of your foes.

    Or just Klingon the whole thing.
    Last edited by Zanos; 2017-09-06 at 07:58 PM.
    If any idiot ever tells you that life would be meaningless without death, Hyperion recommends killing them!

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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    I don't have much on suggestions at the moment (those seem to be pretty well covered anyway). I just wanted to point out that Wish, in Pathfinder, costs 25k gp in diamond per casting instead of being an xp cost. And if you had 40k of xp floating around it would make more sense to hit level 19, then 20, and have more spells per day and spells known to work with (and the chance to swap something out at 20th) anyway, wouldn't it?

    As far as I'm aware, Disjunction is the king of breaking magic, including most (if not all) sources of blocking teleporting. So getting a scroll or two of it might pay off quite handsomely, depending on how things go with it.

    I think the Passwall spell gets overlooked. While it's not on your list of spells known, enough scrolls of it or a runestaff that lets you access the spell could let you tunnel your way through the castle in question, or just make some strategic holes where walls used to be to get at the person faster. It allows for no saving throw and no spell resistance.

    Wall of Iron is on your spell list, and while you might not be able to deploy it inside any of the castles in question, you can deploy it outside and topple it down onto the castle in question as a means of threatening them with very real consequences for not taking your teleport ride to the capital for the signing. "Go with me willingly now, while I can protect you from assassins, or I'll leave gaping holes in your castle, take you anyway, and guarantee no protection."

    I mean, at least some of them seemed to have legitimate concerns for their continued wellbeing. Allaying those concerns (by either truthfully reassuring them, or lying to their fat faces), is a non magical tactic that you can utilize to try and solve this problem.

    edit: oh, and for threatening people with a wall of iron, you might be able to use some Immovable Rods and some folding wooden platforms/long planks of wood set up on them to count as ground for the wall to appear on, even if it subsequently causes the wood between the Immovable rods to fail the moment the weight comes down on it, resulting in a Wall of Iron falling and flopping through the air until it crashes into the castle.
    Last edited by Sagetim; 2017-09-06 at 10:55 PM.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zanos View Post
    You mentioned you want to avoid huge bloodshed, and that the current king and these 8 people don't have the support of the people. How about some light bloodshed, where you kill anyone that doesn't do what you say until they make you king? They're avoiding it for personal interest, so being threatened with death should be a pretty good motivator for people who don't seem to have any real honor.

    Optionally, retrain one of your spells to animate dead and raise an undead horde to help you do it, because if you're a sorcerer taking over a kingdom, style counts. Rule atop a mountain of the shattered corpses of your foes.

    Or just Klingon the whole thing.
    This is the sad truth of being able to cast spell, very high level and about to be king : What you gain in moral for being good, you lose in style tenfold.

    (And what does mean "Klingon the whole things ? :o"

    The big game night is tonight anyway, so I'm about to get ready with a mix of your suggestion, including some hefty buy of magic items to support it, including some scroll of disjunction and passwall. No scroll of wish seems accessible, since the only person I know able to craft it would be highly suspicious of such a demand. (And probably able to ruin everything planned, because...Lvl 20 wizard and so on.)

    As things are going, i'm going to try to subdue them all forcefully, with basically Segev planning as a contingency if it were to fail. The true worry i have if that I probably won't be able to gather as much intel in one week as I'd like, and running into a high level mercenerary wizard would be a problem. I'll guess I'll try to roll with it, sorcerer style.

    Anyway, thank you all for the advice, you gave me some hugely beneficial tactical point, and If you'r curious, i'll keep you informed on how things went.
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Clarity points...

    1. Is this a constitutional monarchy/Parliamentary Democracy, a la Britain? In which case, what power is there in actually being king? It's ceremonial sure, but unless they are like Rex(Roman King) levels of Regnum, wouldn't it be far more profitable to be prime minister/Vizier?

    2. Can you Retrain? Cause they are right on the wish thing. I'd rather buy scrolls of time stop than wish. There is other stuff, but generally sorcerer players are tied to fluff pretty strongly, so I will not. But Arcanist is in the SRD
    JUST SAIYAN

    3. Are you the only magic user in the territory? Cause detect magic is quick to upturn shenanigans.

    4. Any way you can upturn the economy? Because economics is probably the easiest way to actually cause a bloodless coup d'etat

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by DMVerdandi View Post
    Clarity points...

    1. Is this a constitutional monarchy/Parliamentary Democracy, a la Britain? In which case, what power is there in actually being king? It's ceremonial sure, but unless they are like Rex(Roman King) levels of Regnum, wouldn't it be far more profitable to be prime minister/Vizier?

    2. Can you Retrain? Cause they are right on the wish thing. I'd rather buy scrolls of time stop than wish. There is other stuff, but generally sorcerer players are tied to fluff pretty strongly, so I will not. But Arcanist is in the SRD
    JUST SAIYAN

    3. Are you the only magic user in the territory? Cause detect magic is quick to upturn shenanigans.

    4. Any way you can upturn the economy? Because economics is probably the easiest way to actually cause a bloodless coup d'etat
    Hey,

    1) My english is sadly not good enough to specificaly name a medieval political system, but it works like that : The king got basicaly all the executive power, and most of the judiciary and lesgislative power, at the exeption of specific matter where the parliament got his words to say, to be more specifics, mostly in case of declaration of war with another country, some specific taxes and ... in case where the kings should be deposed.

    Clearly the monarch is all powerful, but he does still have a lot of power to wield, and he is able to set up his own dinasty - Wich got a certain appeal to it, to be honest. The parliament need a huge majority - And even an unanimity - to veto the kings, and It will basicaly be the first time in that country history that the parliament can legitimately challenge him, mostly also because the army is - For reason too long to develop - unable/unwilling to stop the parlementary process.

    2) Nope, it's only 100% core sadly, and, to be honest, I wouldn't do it for fluff reason either, I'am madly in love with that character the way he is, even with all it flaws.

    3) Nope, tho the one strong enough to challenge me in a magic duel could be counter on the finger of one hand. And clearly you are right, and that's why I would prefer my noble to be the real one, and if possible, not mind controlled.

    4) Got almost no leverage here to do some strong impact in less than a week. I could maybe "Bruteforce" the economy and deal it a savage blow, but that would leave the country in a state I wouldn't enjoy governing.
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Well, Fabricate isn't on your spell list, but it bears mentioning as something that can deal a lethal blow to an economy by flooding the market with various goods of particular kinds. It's not even just 'make a craft check at spell's casting speed', because it lets you transform something based on value, to another object of the same kind but worth 3x the value. So, for example, you could get a pile of diamond dust, Fabricate it into an art object worth 3x the diamond dust's value, Fabricate the art object into a pile of diamond dust worth 3x the art object's value, and rinse and repeat, gaining 3x value every time until you finally reached a point where the limits of the spell's targeting would prevent you from doing it again and again.

    But in the meantime, you could start splitting off piles of diamond dust to stockpile it along the way. This is where Fabricate and the fact that Wish runs off of money now instead of xp comes into play as being a potentially obnoxious combo.

    If nothing else, you can flood the local iron market by casting Wall of Iron like...once. It might take some doing to get it into ingots or what have you, but Wall of Iron creates a significant amount of iron.

    Spoiler: Wall of Iron At Your Caster Level
    Show
    a 5ft square per caster level and 1 inch of thickness per 4 caster levels gives us 18 5ft squares at 4 inches of thickness. Put those together into a nice 90ft x 5ft plane with 4 inches of thickness, and we can multiple that all together to get a volume measurement: 90ft x 5 ft =450 ft square x 1/3rd of a foot for thickness = 150 cubic feet.

    We get to 1/3rd of a foot because 4 inches / 12 inches = 1/3rd. So, proceeding from 150 cubic feet, we can just google 'cubic feet to weight of iron to get that a cubic foot of iron weighs 491 pounds. So we multiple 150 cubic feet x 491 pounds = 73,650 pounds.

    Now that we have the weight of a wall of iron you can cast in pounds, we can convert it to the metric system or use it as it is. For reference, your wall of iron would weight 33407.078 Kilograms.

    Now, If it weren't a giant floppy strip of wall, then I could ballpark some numbers on how much force it would hit the ground with if dropped from 100feet or so above. But suffice to say, the answer is 'a lot'. There's also other characteristics that would come into play in dropping it on something, as it's only going to retain it's shape so much on hitting something at high speed.


    Edit: The important part is that you casting wall of iron at level 18 results in 73,650 pounds of iron in the form of that wall of iron being made. For a 50 gold material component, that's a steal. And you could wreak yet more havoc on the local iron market by selling the wall of iron for some piddling some like 100 gold instead of it's actual value as a trade good.
    Last edited by Sagetim; 2017-09-07 at 10:45 AM.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sagetim View Post
    Well, Fabricate isn't on your spell list, but it bears mentioning as something that can deal a lethal blow to an economy by flooding the market with various goods of particular kinds. It's not even just 'make a craft check at spell's casting speed', because it lets you transform something based on value, to another object of the same kind but worth 3x the value. So, for example, you could get a pile of diamond dust, Fabricate it into an art object worth 3x the diamond dust's value, Fabricate the art object into a pile of diamond dust worth 3x the art object's value, and rinse and repeat, gaining 3x value every time until you finally reached a point where the limits of the spell's targeting would prevent you from doing it again and again.

    But in the meantime, you could start splitting off piles of diamond dust to stockpile it along the way. This is where Fabricate and the fact that Wish runs off of money now instead of xp comes into play as being a potentially obnoxious combo.

    If nothing else, you can flood the local iron market by casting Wall of Iron like...once. It might take some doing to get it into ingots or what have you, but Wall of Iron creates a significant amount of iron.

    Spoiler: Wall of Iron At Your Caster Level
    Show
    a 5ft square per caster level and 1 inch of thickness per 4 caster levels gives us 18 5ft squares at 4 inches of thickness. Put those together into a nice 90ft x 5ft plane with 4 inches of thickness, and we can multiple that all together to get a volume measurement: 90ft x 5 ft =450 ft square x 1/3rd of a foot for thickness = 150 cubic feet.

    We get to 1/3rd of a foot because 4 inches / 12 inches = 1/3rd. So, proceeding from 150 cubic feet, we can just google 'cubic feet to weight of iron to get that a cubic foot of iron weighs 491 pounds. So we multiple 150 cubic feet x 491 pounds = 73,650 pounds.

    Now that we have the weight of a wall of iron you can cast in pounds, we can convert it to the metric system or use it as it is. For reference, your wall of iron would weight 33407.078 Kilograms.

    Now, If it weren't a giant floppy strip of wall, then I could ballpark some numbers on how much force it would hit the ground with if dropped from 100feet or so above. But suffice to say, the answer is 'a lot'. There's also other characteristics that would come into play in dropping it on something, as it's only going to retain it's shape so much on hitting something at high speed.


    Edit: The important part is that you casting wall of iron at level 18 results in 73,650 pounds of iron in the form of that wall of iron being made. For a 50 gold material component, that's a steal. And you could wreak yet more havoc on the local iron market by selling the wall of iron for some piddling some like 100 gold instead of it's actual value as a trade good.
    I tried to screw with the economics of the world using my last wizard that way. Once. (Using Wall of Stone and not wall of Iron, actually)

    Now, there is a special order of assassin in this world, paid by a joint company of all the big market holder of the plane. (I find it funny to see how capitalism reajust itself in a fantasy world.)

    And, to be fair with my dm, even if it could be seen as an easy way for him to fix that kind of cheese to transform it into "Sure Death by way of overpowered assassin hunting you all the time till you are dead 100% and trapping your soul", I find it actually quite realist in a word where a serious economy exist, to eradicate such attempt at derailling it. (I don't know in your country, but where I'm from, creating mass false money would yield you pretty much the same output)
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    RogueGuy

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    My DM did the same thing, except with inevitables and a LN god of mercantilism. Prices stayed fixed. You could do whatever you wanted, unless you sold it. Any conjured or transmuted items entering the free market got destroyed and the maker (or person who sold it knowingly) hunted down.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Ah, well, then derailing the economy with magic (at least directly) is a non-starter. I do appreciate that the setting adapted in a reasonable manner instead of just kind of giving up. Now, while you may not be able to flood the market with iron goods, Wall of Iron is still useful as a threat.

    Well, the thing about the iron in the wall of iron is...it's not fake. It's Iron. Now if someone were fabricating some gold jewelry into gold ingots into gold coins, then that would be creating false currency in the last step.

    Spoiler: sidetracking about Wall of Iron
    Show
    Also, this line "Iron created by this spell is not suitable for use in the creation of other objects and cannot be sold." seems new to me. And like a giant middle finger brought about by people wanting to do strange and interesting things with Wall of Iron. I mean, if I conjure up some thick foundational walls with Wall of Stone, and then put an outer layer of Wall of Iron on it, then I want to Fabricate the Wall of Iron to have spikes on it and stuff...does that just not work? Because that seems like it should to me. If only because it would be cool.


    Oh, and just to point it out: if there's no law against it, you could use Feeblemind on some of those politicians instead of Dominate as a means of shuffling them to the right place at the right time, and only dispel the effect on them later (if at all). After all, it's not like being a drooling idiot has stopped politicians in the past.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sagetim View Post
    After all, it's not like being a drooling idiot has stopped politicians in the past.
    Now, now, be fair. They aren't allowed to actually drool and get away with it.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Segev View Post
    Now, now, be fair. They aren't allowed to actually drool and get away with it.
    Ah, yes, you might need to pay some hirelings to guide them around much like Flapper's in Gulliver's Travels and wipe their chins for them and what have you.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sagetim View Post
    Ah, well, then derailing the economy with magic (at least directly) is a non-starter. I do appreciate that the setting adapted in a reasonable manner instead of just kind of giving up. Now, while you may not be able to flood the market with iron goods, Wall of Iron is still useful as a threat.

    Well, the thing about the iron in the wall of iron is...it's not fake. It's Iron. Now if someone were fabricating some gold jewelry into gold ingots into gold coins, then that would be creating false currency in the last step.

    Spoiler: sidetracking about Wall of Iron
    Show
    Also, this line "Iron created by this spell is not suitable for use in the creation of other objects and cannot be sold." seems new to me. And like a giant middle finger brought about by people wanting to do strange and interesting things with Wall of Iron. I mean, if I conjure up some thick foundational walls with Wall of Stone, and then put an outer layer of Wall of Iron on it, then I want to Fabricate the Wall of Iron to have spikes on it and stuff...does that just not work? Because that seems like it should to me. If only because it would be cool.


    Oh, and just to point it out: if there's no law against it, you could use Feeblemind on some of those politicians instead of Dominate as a means of shuffling them to the right place at the right time, and only dispel the effect on them later (if at all). After all, it's not like being a drooling idiot has stopped politicians in the past.
    Actually, even the threat of casting Feeblemind and/or Dominate Person on one (or more) of the nobles might be useful.

    "If you don't do what I tell you to do, you'll be a drooling idiot for the rest of your life and you'll still do what I say (including giving me money/harming your land/killing your own family) anyway. *cough* Dominate Person *cough* And don't even think of hiring another spellcaster that could remove or ward against the spell(s)- I've taken... precautions to prevent that."
    Last edited by ATHATH; 2017-09-07 at 03:59 PM.
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dezea View Post
    And, to be fair with my dm, even if it could be seen as an easy way for him to fix that kind of cheese to transform it into "Sure Death by way of overpowered assassin hunting you all the time till you are dead 100% and trapping your soul", I find it actually quite realist in a word where a serious economy exist, to eradicate such attempt at derailling it. (I don't know in your country, but where I'm from, creating mass false money would yield you pretty much the same output)
    This isn't killing people with improbably overpowered assassins who aren't themselves simply bigger wizards for generating false currency.

    This is killing people for the equivalent of creating a new manufacturing company.
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Coidzor View Post
    This isn't killing people with improbably overpowered assassins who aren't themselves simply bigger wizards for generating false currency.

    This is killing people for the equivalent of creating a new manufacturing company.
    You act like that hasn't happened at various points in history. It always tends to fail in the end, but rich people like to stay rich.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Coidzor View Post
    This isn't killing people with improbably overpowered assassins who aren't themselves simply bigger wizards for generating false currency.

    This is killing people for the equivalent of creating a new manufacturing company.
    Indeed ! And I never implied it was the moral things to do. Simply that is was totally credible that, as pointed by Fouredged Sword, people with power and money tend to enjoy their position.

    And I guess a serious argument could be made for the greater good here, because if a lole wizard decided to crush the economy by mass producing something without any cost and selling it for money, it would probably means a ****load of problem for everyone involved in a "Fair" market. Of course, that wouldn't apply in a Typpiverse... But we'r not talking about one, here.
    Last edited by Dezea; 2017-09-08 at 07:43 AM.
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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Bluff is a class skill for sorcerers - have you been keeping it maxed? You may have to persuade some of them through mundane methods rather than spells (if for no other reason than your spell slots will be very tight with all the teleporting you'll have to do to gather all the nobles). This also has the advantage of not having to cover your tracks later on (e.g. if you resort to dominate person you may have to use limited wish afterwards to make them forget you were controlling them), and of bypassing any protections they have against mind control.

    Use greater heroism and moment of prescience to boost your Bluff (or Diplomacy) checks.

    Limited wish will be your key to getting in/out of the teleport-warded castles ("I make a limited wish that my next greater teleport can penetrate the wards.")

    Is there absolutely no way for you to spend a day dominating some of the nobles in advance? Dominate person lasts one day per level, after all. Having to collect all of them on the same day is going to put a lot of pressure on your spell slots.

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    Default Re: An exercice of thought : High level wizardry applied to politics.

    Sorry for double-posting, just saw your stat block. Looks like skills are the way to go! Your Bluff is great as it is; greater heroism + moment of prescience means you can even use Diplomacy as well.

    The Plan
    Cast fly, greater heroism, invisibility, and moment of prescience on yourself.

    Greater teleport to each castle (+/- limited wish for the warded castles), taking all nobles you've just persuaded with you each time).

    Invisibility plus fly gets you undetected to each noble's throne room (leave any nobles you've collected safely in a side-room).

    Bluff/Diplomacy checks to persuade each noble - a natural 1 doesn't fail (another advantage of skills over spells), so you just have to beat the DC to persuade them. If you take 10 you'll beat a Bluff DC of 52 or a Diplomacy DC of 30, not including moment of prescience. Reserve the moment of prescience for the 18th-level noble, or for nobles that somehow beat your first skill check (so quickly switch to the other skill and activate the moment).

    Return to the side-room and teleport everyone to the next castle.

    As a 19th-level caster your greater teleport can only carry yourself plus 6 nobles, so once you've bagged 6 of them use your 7th greater teleport to take them to the voting area before you tackle the last 2 castles (presumably your GM wants you to save the teleport-warded castles for last for story purposes anyways).

    Limited wish plus greater teleport to get to the 7th castle (teleport-warded), persuade the noble, then limited wish plus greater teleport with him/her to get to the 8th castle (teleport-warded, the high-level noble). Persuade him/her (resorting to moment of prescience and/or dominate person as necessary), then limited wish plus final greater teleport to take these last 2 nobles to the voting area.

    Minimum Spells Used
    Assorted low-level buffs (fly, greater heroism, invisibility)

    Greater teleport x 10 (to each castle and to voting area), n.b. you will need to start using your 8th-level slots as you'll run out of 7th-level slots by this point.

    Limited Wish x3 (assuming you need it to teleport out of the warded castles as well as in),

    Moment of prescience x 1

    High-level spell slots left: 8th x 2, 9th x 5. If you want to safely use Diplomacy each time you can use these slots for other moments of prescience, one for each of the other nobles beyond the 18th-level person. You'll beat a Bluff DC of 71 or a Diplomacy DC of 49!

    Advantages (vs. using offensive magic)
    Subtlety, you need never break invisibility as you'll just be talking and never casting attack spells, and there's no way for the nobles to magically protect themselves from Bluff/Diplomacy. Furthermore a Bluff/Diplomacy check only takes 1 minute by generous RAW so you can do it all, including the spellcasting, well within the 10 minute limit. Most importantly, you won't run out of spell slots since you don't have to worry about using attack spells!

    Good luck!

    Bonus Tricks
    Use limited wish to allow scrying/greater scrying to pierce the divination protections (if your scry caster level isn't already high enough) before the voting day. This way you can plan out where the side rooms/throne rooms are in advance.

    One final point - cheesy as it is, you can also use limited wish to duplicate glibness or a Diplomacy-boosting equivalent! :D
    Last edited by rferries; 2017-09-09 at 05:21 PM.

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