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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    On the spell point system (as laid out in the Unearthed Arcana options on the SRD HERE where would you put some of the non-core casting classes?

    For example:

    Beguiler: Sorcerer category?
    Warmage: Sorcerer?
    Shadowcraft Mage: Sorcerer?

    Hmmm... I'm sensing a trend. I suppose the best way to do it would be to look at whether they are a prepared or spontaneous caster, and go from there. Prepared go in the Wizard/Druid/Cleric category, spontaneous in the Sorcerer category. Non-full casting classes likewise, in the Paladin/Ranger category or the Bard...

    Looks like I've answered my own question. Any disagreement there?
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Multiply the number of 1st level slots by 1.
    Multiply the number of 2nd level slots by 3.
    Multiply the number of 3rd level slots by 5.
    Multiply the number of 4th level slots by 7.
    Multiply the number of 5th level slots by 9.
    Multiply the number of 6th level slots by 11.
    Multiply the number of 7th level slots by 13.
    Multiply the number of 8th level slots by 15.
    Multiply the number of 9th level slots by 17.

    Add, and that's the number of spell points. That's how the listed classes work out.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    And while we're at it how would items like rings of wizardry work?
    Last edited by arkol; 2007-09-19 at 02:31 PM.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Quote Originally Posted by arkol View Post
    And while we're at it how would items like rings of wizardry work?
    They'd double the number of spell points you receive from that particular level.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    While we're on it, does anyone have any opinions on this system. I think I really like the versatility, but some of the issues seem a bit odd.

    For example, if a 9th level wizard wants to cast his Magic Missile at 9th level power, he has to pay 9 points to do so. He can cast a 9th level power Fireball for the same amount of points. That seems odd to me.

    I'm going to be using this system for an upcoming adventure / campaign, as I really want to give it a swing, but it seems that might be an issue.
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    Fighter: I can kill a guy in one turn.
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    Wizard: I can kill a guy before my turn!
    Bard: I can get 12 idiots to go kill guys for me
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Actually, I'd probably just make them grant a flat bonus of spell points. I'd also raise the price of these items to compensate (this variant would make the rings significantly more powerful, as the whole point to the spell point system is that you are no longer restricted to Vancian spellcasting or Vancian metamagic: for example, nothing is stopping a character from converting 5 bonus points from a ring of wizardy I to cast a 3rd level spell. With Vancian casting, this would be impossible).

    Examples
    --------------------------------
    Ring of Wizardry 1: Add 5 points.
    Ring of Wizardry 2: Add 10 points.
    Ring of Wizardry 3: Add 20 points.
    Ring of Wizardry 4: Add 35 points.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
    While we're on it, does anyone have any opinions on this system. I think I really like the versatility, but some of the issues seem a bit odd.
    It doesn't lend itself well to the existing set of spells. Like many of Unearthed Arcana's variants, it's a good idea but the specific implementation of it is horrid. Psionics, on the other hand, were made with this kind of system in mind, you might consider using those instead.

    The big problem is that some spells don't improve significantly with caster level. While that fireball gets another d6 of damage, a stinking cloud just lasts an extra round; and a single round of exposure to it is often all you really need out of it. This is a fairly consistent theme, damage spells notably improve while save-or-sucks and save-or-dies...don't. So it ends up being more efficient in terms of spell points to use save-or-X spells, which are already more efficient in terms of effectiveness then damage spells.
    Last edited by Jasdoif; 2007-09-19 at 03:02 PM.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    What with this set up and psionics, as well as the looming dethroning of vancian magic, I see the MP system appearing in 4th edition.

    As for a magic point system, it might be pretty neat. I can see it cutting back on book keeping.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Another problem of the system is that wizards become even better....

    I wanted to use this system but raise the spell points necessary to cast higher level spells, while keeping the number of spell points per day the same. Hopefully this would tone down casters a bit.

    But the whole "more-spell-points-to-raise-caster-level" sounds a bit ridiculous.

    So the two main questions:

    How many spell points to caster higher level spells?

    What sort of disadvantage could one give to wizards (since they get a huge advantage)?


    EDIT:
    Actually, I'd probably just make them grant a flat bonus of spell points. I'd also raise the price of these items to compensate (this variant would make the rings significantly more powerful, as the whole point to the spell point system is that you are no longer restricted to Vancian spellcasting or Vancian metamagic: for example, nothing is stopping a character from converting 5 bonus points from a ring of wizardy I to cast a 3rd level spell. With Vancian casting, this would be impossible).
    I disagree. It would hurt some characters a lot more then others. For exemple for Duskblade who makes a great use of rings of wizardry I and II, those items would now be tottaly ovepriced. For rangers/paladins (or other classes with similar spell progressions) the rings are now a great boon. Probably still not worth it, but percentagewise they would be getting a lot more spells out of the rings then other classes.

    I think the best solution is sort of a compromisse. And would need some book keeping in part of the DM.

    I best explain my idea with an exemple:

    A certain classe gets 5 lvl2 base at some level. And he gets a ring of wizardry II. Normally this ring would give him another 5 spells. So using Jasdoif this would mean another 15 spell points. But you can use spells points for spells of any level so instead you reduce the number of spell points by a certain percentage to account for the versatility you get out of them. Say.. 75%?

    Thus you would gain 11 spell points instead.

    Of course as you increase in level the ring would grant you more spells points and you would have to recalculate every time....
    Last edited by arkol; 2007-09-19 at 06:24 PM.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Quote Originally Posted by arkol View Post
    What sort of disadvantage could one give to wizards (since they get a huge advantage)?
    Non-existance. Use the specialist classes instead (Warmage, Beguiler, Dread Necromancer). Vitalising spell points are also handy.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    That's an extreme solution.... I was thinking more along the lines of... what disadvantage could you give to a wizard that would not make EVERYONE want or not want to play with them.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    You can just say that spells cost a number of spell points equal to their level and work normally(no augmenting that is).And give a caster less spell points than he would have if he combined all his spell slots.

    This will give them more versatility and will force them to use lower level spells that are not that powerful.They would still be able to cast higher level spells, but if they do they will burn their power points quickly.

    This is obviously not perfect.Since some lower level spells are powerful even later.And if they have only 1 or 2 encounters per day, they will still have enough spells for those.

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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Quote Originally Posted by arkol View Post
    That's an extreme solution.... I was thinking more along the lines of... what disadvantage could you give to a wizard that would not make EVERYONE want or not want to play with them.
    Does that mean that you just want to nerf spellcasters?Not necessarily give them spell points system?

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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Yes and no. Although I feel like I'm hijacking this topic....

    What I want is first give a slight nerf to spellcasters in general. The spell point system might not be ideal for this.... but the flavour is great and fits my idea of magic much better then the vancian system. Spell points could easily be called mana....

    So since I WILL be using the spell point variant AND I want to nerf casters a bit, I think that raising the spell points required to cast higher level spells is a nice and simple way of doing it (obviosuly keeping the spell points they GET the same).

    But the WIZARD specificallly needs a further nerf. Why? Because the spell point system essencially gives them NO disavantage AND more versatility (as in more then the other casters get) as he doesn't need to prepare duplicates of spells.


    ------

    Upon closer inspection of the spell point variant somethign doesn't seem right.

    A druid/wizard/cleric of lvl1 can cast one lvl1 spell. But they get 2 spell points. Meaning they can cast 2 lvl2 spells.

    The same goes on at higher levels....
    Last edited by arkol; 2007-09-19 at 07:19 PM.
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Quote Originally Posted by arkol View Post
    Upon closer inspection of the spell point variant something doesn't seem right.

    A druid/wizard/cleric of lvl1 can cast one lvl1 spell. But they get 2 spell points. Meaning they can cast 2 lvl2 spells.

    The same goes on at higher levels....
    But they cannot cast level 2 spells until level 3.Or did you mean they can cast 2 level 1 spells?

    If you make mana system you may wish to disallow wizards and add sorcerers only(or other spell known classes).

    Simple way of nerfing spellcasters is to not allow them to get uber INT/WIS/CHA. So give your PCs elite array on the beginning, ban tomes that improve abilities and ban non-PHB races(or just ban no-LA INT/WIS/CHA boosting ones).

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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    But they cannot cast level 2 spells until level 3.Or did you mean they can cast 2 level 1 spells?
    Er.. ugh.. yeah that's what I meant...
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Yeah, it does look like the point system needs a bit of tweaking. I'll take a gander at it to get a better idea. But you're right. At least at low levels, it actually makes the wizzies more powerful.

    Granted, that's not a problem in this campaign. One Beguiler, one Warmage, one Druid and one Psion.

    No problem there. :)
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    Quote Originally Posted by theos911 View Post
    Fighter: I can kill a guy in one turn.
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    Wizard: I can kill a guy before my turn!
    Bard: I can get 12 idiots to go kill guys for me
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dhavaer View Post
    Non-existance. Use the specialist classes instead (Warmage, Beguiler, Dread Necromancer). Vitalising spell points are also handy.
    I second Dhavaer's suggestion. If there are spell points, either spontaneous casters need to go or prepared casters need to go. I'd rather drop prepared casters as I find spontaneous casters less annoying.

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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    I'm not saying that it's not a possible solution, but it's not a definitive solution.

    Sure you may be ok with disallowing wizards or sorcs or whatever, but some DMs/players want to run the system WITH all those classes included. That's why it's not a definitive solution.

    So Tyger you wanna do some brainstorming into coming up with a more decent spell poitn system? Someone else too?
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    Well, the two problems that I see are:

    1) It actually increases the casting power of wizards at low level. As you pointed out, a first level wizard can, with no INT bonus at all, prepare one spell per the regular rules, but cast that spell twice. That's a problem.

    2) The cost of increasing the damage on spells doesn't make sense. As I noted above, for the same cost, a 9th level wizard can cast a 5 missile Magic Missile or a 9d6 Fireball. Hmm, which one will you be using? This extra cost is intended to offset the number of spells that the system grants you, but it only applies to damage causing spells. And as we all know from the great and powerful Logic Ninja, that's suboptimal in the first place. Granted, I do it when I play a wiz, but that's not the issue here.

    So, solutions?

    1) Increased power?
    • Half the available spell points. This eliminates the overpowered selection at low levels, but still permits for variance and selection. At 8th level, the caster would have (assuming 20 INT) 30 spell points, rather than 61. This would still allow for 7 fourth level spells with 2 first, or more realistically, 6 first, 3 second, 3 third and 2 fourth... which is almost exactly what they would normally get.


    2) Having to up the damage on spells?
    • Remove this completely. If you remove this, while at the same time halving the spell points available, then you end up with pretty much exactly the casting capability that the class had originally. All damage causing spells are cast at the caster's normal level, and they still get the versatility of choosing their spell allocations.


    Now I'll be the first to admit that my math is atrocious, so I may be way out there. But how does that sound? Something tells me it will screw casters at high level though...

    Hmmm... a 20th level wizard, with an INT of 26, would have (normally) 312 Spell Points. Halving that takes it to 156. Just the base 4 spells at every level which a 20th level wizard gets is 180. Adding in the bonuses for a 26 INT, that's another 46 points, so 226 normally. That means the level 20 Wizard would have quite a few fewer spells.

    Hmmm, maybe it needs to be on a floating scale? 1/3 reduction, rounding up?
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    Quote Originally Posted by theos911 View Post
    Fighter: I can kill a guy in one turn.
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    Wizard: I can kill a guy before my turn!
    Bard: I can get 12 idiots to go kill guys for me
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    I think it will have to be done on a level by level case. Not reducing 1/2 or 1/3.

    Essencially calculate how many spell points would they normally have for a given level a and give them those spell points.

    Then for those wishing to nerf them a bit (like me) increase the necessary spells poitn to cast a spell. The problem is where do we start raising it. At what level do spells start to be a bit broken? 5? 6?


    So for a normal wizard the number of spells points they should get should be:

    lvl: spell points
    01 - 1
    02 - 2
    03 - 5
    04 - 9
    05 - 14
    06 - 22
    07 - 30
    08 - 42
    09 - 54
    10 - 70
    11 - 86
    12 - 106
    13 - 126
    14 - 150
    15 - 174
    16 - 202
    17 - 230
    18 - 262
    19 - 292
    20 - 324

    This is how much spell poitns they would get if they received exactly the spell poitns necessary to cast the spell they normally can cast. As you can see at first it's less but as they progress they eventually get move then by the usual point buy system.

    At level around level 8/9/10 it's almost the same (slighly less) and after that it starts increasing exponentially.

    So it seems right that spell near that poitn should start costing more to cast.
    I would say that level4 spell already need a small increase, probably just one point. And maybe go from there...
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    Default Re: The Spell Point system and non-core characters?

    You could always try adding a rule about spellcasting failure, with possible consequences, saying that it has to do with the ability to control the flow of dangerous forces. Tie that in to Intelligence and it means that smarter people are better spellcasters (less chance of failure) and not simply able to cast more spells. It can also be used to explain why they can't cast higher-level spells that they technically have enough spell points to cast ("You can't cast a ninth-level spell yet because you'll burn out your brain.")

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