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

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    Default Simple spellcaster nerf

    Make it so that the modifier bonus (int for arcane spellcasters, wis for divine spellcasters, plus charisma for both) also determines the highest level of spells that can be cast, in addition to bonus spells.

    Ex: With an Int of 15, a Wis of 9, and a Cha of 12, you can't cast divine spells, and you can only cast arcane spells of 1st level or lower.


    (can't improve w/ enchancement to get higher level spells.) Make charisma determine save dc's.

    Get rid of or reduce the power of too powerful spells. (ex: divine power, polymorph)

    Use the aspect of nature variant for druids (from unearthed arcana).

    What do you think?

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Way too big a nerf. Only characters with insane mental stats could cast upper level spells if I understand you correctly.
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    purplearcanist's Avatar

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by AKA_Bait View Post
    Way too big a nerf. Only characters with insane mental stats could cast upper level spells if I understand you correctly.
    But aren't those the things that make spellcasters so powerful?
    Plus, you can still use the upper level spell slots for lower level spells.
    Or multiclass.

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    Tengu's Avatar

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Reminds me of a basic spellcaster class I invented some time ago. It was basically a sorcerer with cleric and druid spells on his list apart from the arcane ones, but the class used wisdom for maximum spell level known, intelligence for bonus spells and charisma for spell DCs.

    And yes, your changes are too much of a nerf. A character would need 20 in unbuffed charisma and wisdom/intelligence to cast level 5 spells. Why not just limit spellcasters to bards or something if you want to do it so badly?
    Last edited by Tengu; 2007-09-16 at 08:10 PM.

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by purplearcanist View Post
    But aren't those the things that make spellcasters so powerful?
    Plus, you can still use the upper level spell slots for lower level spells.
    Or multiclass.
    Why not just get rid of upper level spells in that case?

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    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by Solo View Post
    Why not just get rid of upper level spells in that case?
    Wizards without getting handed 9th level spells in their repetoire like candy?

    BLASPHEMY!
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  7. - Top - End - #7
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Normally the limit on level of spells is by attribute value, not bonus.

    Even used that way, it would be nearly impossible for anyone to cast 9th level spells if item-based enhancements don't count and 19+ scores in two attributes are required...

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Speaking as someone who thinks spellcasters are overpowered: No.

    Now you're practically requiring spellcasters to twink out their prime stat. This nerfs the half-assed ones (who weren't the problem to begin with) and encourages everyone to reach for the insane mental stats. Find another way.

    Ways I've toyed with (but ended up never adopting) include:
    *capping the attribute bonus to save DC's.
    *making all spells take twice the time to cast (full round for standard action spells, 2 rounds for full round spells, etc).
    *Giving Fighters and Barbarians the free feat "Mageslayer" or "Iron Will" at 3rd level.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    You'd have to have a 28 in your casting stat to get 9th level spells. That leaves...lemme see...there's gotta be something...don't fail me now google...ah ha! Atropals, Uvaduams, Elder Titans, Ha-Nagas, and Leshays would be the only things in the SRD capable of casting 9th level spells. Tose are all epic. Every single one of those is massively epic. Hell, the strongest dragon could only cast fifth level spells.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by Tengu View Post
    Reminds me of a basic spellcaster class I invented some time ago. It was basically a sorcerer with cleric and druid spells on his list apart from the arcane ones, but the class used wisdom for maximum spell level known, intelligence for bonus spells and charisma for spell DCs.
    I homebrewed the same thing, but wisdom for bonus spells, intelligence for number of spells known and charisma for DCs. That way there's no one mental stat that casters NEED and they can customize a bit more while getting nerfed.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    The way I am reading it you would need a 28 in your casting stat and in cha. So two stats with a 28. And your enhancement bonus does not apply for the purposes of casting higher level spells.

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    I think one ability score for spell level would *probably* be a more balanced nerf for spellcasters.

    But please think of how weak the fighter is compared to the spellcaster.

    At level 1, it is balanced, but from then on, the spellcaster gets too powerful.

    This is supposed to curve that power.
    Last edited by purplearcanist; 2007-09-16 at 08:36 PM.

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by Machete View Post
    Wizards without getting handed 9th level spells in their repetoire like candy?

    BLASPHEMY!
    Or at all, in this case.

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by purplearcanist View Post
    I think one ability score for spell level would *probably* be a more balanced nerf for spellcasters.

    But please think of how weak the fighter is compared to the spellcaster.

    At level 1, it is balanced, but from then on, the spellcaster gets too powerful.

    This is supposed to curve that power.
    Um... The Fighter's generally considered a very poorly-designed class. It's kinda the epitome of weakness. Solving balance issues by bringing casters down to Fighter levels would be like solving disparity by outlawing all forms of interpersonal trade.
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    if you don't like the casters, play E6 variant of D&D instead, casters can still be good but it is the casters who are thinking working all day that excel. (incarnum also rocks)

    http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=202109
    http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=206323
    http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=919827
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    Kurald Galain's Avatar

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Another interesting nerf would be outlawing the concentration system. In earlier editions, when you got hit by something, you lost whatever spell you were casting. In third ed, you get to make a rather easy con check instead.

  17. - Top - End - #17
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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Consider taking the Big 3 power classes out of the game so there are No Clerics, Druids or Wizards. Make the Big 3 PRCs after level 5 which require 8 ranks spellcraft and arcane or religion depending on the path chosen along with Skill Focus feats for those two skill. No level 9 spells until the game goes Epic and level 22 at the earliest delaying other Epic spells to level 26+.

    The Spellcaster variant is one fix.

    Just using Favored Souls, Psions, Shamans, Shugenka, Sorcerers, Warmages and Wilders with their limited known spells/powers addresses most of the abuses by limiting spell options.
    Last edited by CASTLEMIKE; 2007-09-17 at 04:18 AM.

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    One group I know of are about to increase casting times of each spell to (spell level / 2) standard actions. So 0, 1st & 2nd level spells are unaffected, but you're looking at 4 rounds to cast a 9th level spell.

    I think it needs some kinks hammered out of it (it won't have any effect on out-of-combat spells, amongst other things), but it could possibly work.

  19. - Top - End - #19
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    Kurald Galain's Avatar

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    It does make Time Stop rather funny. Spend four rounds to gain three rounds, wheeee!!!!

    What about Quicken...

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    It does make Time Stop rather funny. Spend four rounds to gain three rounds, wheeee!!!!
    The DM isn't a big fan of timestop anyway...

    What about Quicken...
    IIRC, that would bring it down to a single standard action to cast. That's as fast as any spell can be.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by purplearcanist View Post
    I think one ability score for spell level would *probably* be a more balanced nerf for spellcasters.

    But please think of how weak the fighter is compared to the spellcaster.

    At level 1, it is balanced, but from then on, the spellcaster gets too powerful.

    This is supposed to curve that power.
    I hate to break this to you, but this is a really, really bad idea. If anything, it would actually make spellcasters stronger.

    The enchanter wizard I'm playing right now is currently level 11. Taking into account items, she had the following Int scores at these levels:

    Level 1: 18 Int (+4)
    Level 2: 18 Int (+4)
    Level 3: 18 Int (+4)
    Level 4: 19 Int (+4)
    Level 5: 21 Int (+5)
    Level 6: 21 Int (+5)
    Level 7: 21 Int (+5)
    Level 8: 22 Int (+6)
    Level 9: 24 Int (+7)
    Level 10: 24 Int (+7)
    Level 11: 24 Int (+7)

    So at every level my Int modifier was at least one point above the highest level of spell I could cast. As I gain levels my Int will keep rising as I get better items, raise it at every level divisible by 4, and in the really high levels, get a Tome of Clear Thought.

    So this does nothing to penalise the high-ability-score casters (who are the ones who are the real problem in the first place) and cripples the poor players who don't optimise and choose not to max out their casting stat. Effectively you're making casters stronger, by forcing everyone to optimise them more heavily. It also cuts down on the number of effective high-level casters in the game, which makes the remaining ones even more powerful (they now have fewer rivals).

    Bad idea.

    - Saph
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and Book #10 in the series, Fallen, is out as of September 2019. For updates, check my blog!

  22. - Top - End - #22
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    Tengu's Avatar

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    stuff
    Read his rules more carefully:

    1. To cast a spell of a certain level, you need sufficient charisma apart from your casting star.
    2. Stat boosts from items do not count.

    The idea is bad, but not for the reasons you mentioned.
    Last edited by Tengu; 2007-09-17 at 10:02 AM.

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    That nerf is more punishing than the schedule they followed for Pink Floyd's album The Wall. If you wanna put a damper on the casters, make it a will & word system. You cast a number of spells per day, and they can be any spell you want (or any spell from arcane lists), and you can also keep casting after that number, but you take some kind of damage (CON, hp, death) for doing it.

  24. - Top - End - #24
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    ElfMonkGuy

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Hmm... lessee if I can think up a more palatable, but comparably restrictive, variant...

    Okay. In order for a spellcaster to cast a spell, they must have Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma all of 10+The Spell's Level. Shifting reality ain't easy, you know.

    And ability enhancing items count.

    I think that allows for high-level spells to still be in reach while discouraging min-maxing of a single trait.

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    HalflingRangerGuy

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    The greatest problem with casters are their high DC save or die/lose/suck and no save spells.Aside from those there is only a couple of really problematic spells.
    so:
    Ban overpowered no save spells.
    Give them elite array on the beginning (so max int/cha/wis is only 15).
    Ban gray elfs and other races that have +mental stat and no LA.
    Ban tomes that boost abilities.
    And you can also make items that give enchantment bonus on stats harder to get.

    With that you will have much less problems.But if you wish you can also:
    Make teleport casting time 5 rounds.
    Make dimension door only personal spell.
    Maybe ban some metamagic rods like quicken.

    With spells such as polymorph you just come to the reasonable agreement with players about what forms they can get.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Planetar

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by Tengu View Post
    Read his rules more carefully:

    1. To cast a spell of a certain level, you need sufficient charisma apart from your casting star.
    2. Stat boosts from items do not count.

    The idea is bad, but not for the reasons you mentioned.
    Aagh! You're right, that's even worse!

    Now to be an effective caster you have to twink out BOTH your spellcasting stat AND charisma as well. Suddenly every caster in the game is going to have to start off with incredibly high mental stats, or they're crippled beyond an early level.

    - Saph
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and Book #10 in the series, Fallen, is out as of September 2019. For updates, check my blog!

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Sounds like a high level game. Standard point buy or random rolling by stat is good for casters. Like the real world just wanting isn't enough to give you the natural ability. Most commoners want to be wealthy aristocrats. Just because your PC wanted to be a wizard doesn't mean he was born with a high intelligence with random rolling. He ended up with his best ability being charisma or wisdom or dexterity or strong physical attributes and weak mental attributes.

    Limiting races to core. Removing a handful of spells. Limiting the availabiliyt of magic scrolls of level 4 and higher (Using standard demographics there just aren't the NPCs available in game to be making this stuff and the few who do exist should have standing back logs of orders). No Magic stores helps a lot. Graduate magic item availabiltiy by required level to craft it. Most magic available is wonderous items, potions and scrolls followed by wands and magic armor, shields and weapons. Next step up is Rods followed by Rings and Staffs. If PCs aren't taking the feats why are the NPCs?

    You control what magic is available in campaign and how long it takes to acquire it if they want to purchase it. A grand house is 5,000 GP and takes time to build or buy why should acquiring a magic item take less time.

    PCs need to take feats to craft items like Meta rods which require high caster level and the feat to make them.
    Last edited by CASTLEMIKE; 2007-09-17 at 12:04 PM.

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by CASTLEMIKE View Post
    If PCs aren't taking the feats why are the NPCs?
    If PCs aren't taking levels in Commoner or Adept, why are the NPCs?

    Simple answer: Because it suits what the particular NPCs need and want at the time.

    A grand house is 5,000 GP and takes time to build or buy why should acquiring a magic item take less time.
    Acquiring that house through purchase, however, takes considerably less time than building it.
    The Future just ainít what it used to be.

  29. - Top - End - #29
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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    Quote Originally Posted by Shhalahr Windrider View Post
    Acquiring that house through purchase, however, takes considerably less time than building it.
    That is not necessarily true using magic and standard core rules.

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Simple spellcaster nerf

    And while we are at it. Let's Limit Fighter Feats to Core, and No barbarian variants, and no races but core for melee. And make it hell on them to get magic items. And we can remove Power Attack. And make Sneak Attack progression dependent on Wisdom Modifier. And we can nerf the entire game to death. But just because we can doesn't mean we should.

    NPCs take Crafter Feats because some people make a living making and selling magic items. Why are Experts making Masterwork Weapons? Because that's there job. By your logic everyone should have to smith their own weapons and armor. Specialization leads to civilization. Some people's job is to kill the encroaching enemies, others job is to provide them with the means to do so.

    Simple Spellcaster nerfs can be done. But they have to be done right. And most on this thread aren't. Personally if I were going to limit spellcasters, the easiest way is to just say, no Druid/Wizard/Cleric/Archivist/Artificer. If I wanted to expand on that, I'd make every caster have two attributes like a Favoured Soul. Or maybe remove Duskblade and Beguiler also. If I wanted to nerf them even more, I'd make them all PrCs that you could get into about level 4-6 with the right builds.

    Taking away parts of the game (items, races, whatever) for one type of character and not another is not the best system. Taking away clearly overpowered classes is something most any group can agree to.

    Of course honestly this has never been a problem. Because my groups know to match optimization levels to the other people in the party, so I never really have a problem.

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