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Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-03, 09:40 AM
Edit: These feats have been revised. The new versions appear here (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.pl?action=display;board=homebrew;num=11545719 19;start=0#13).

Personal Focus (General)
* * *You can cast spells using an item of high personal significance as a focus, but your spells are less potent if you must use the standard focus item instead, and the destruction of the item is a traumatic experience.
* * *Prerequisite: Cha 15+, ability to spontaneously cast arcane spells.
* * *Benefit: Choose an item you possess which has great personal significance to you. For all purposes related to spellcasting, that item is now your arcane focus component. No one else can use the item in this way, even if they also possess this feat. The benefits of this feat apply only for that particular item, not items of the same kind or which have the same game effects. If you are forced to cast a spell with an arcane focus component, substituting the standard focus item for your personal focus item, that spell has a save DC of 10 + spell level - your Charisma bonus, and you take a penalty equal to your Charisma bonus on caster level checks related to that spell. If your personal focus item is ever destroyed, must make a DC 15 Fortitude save or lose 200 XP per point of Charisma bonus. A successful save reduces the XP lost to one-half the normal amount.

Soulfire Spell (Metamagic)
* * *You can call upon Vala's power and channel Her power into your fire-based spells.
* * *Prerequisite: Ability to cast spells from the Fire domain, patron goddess Vala, alignment lawful good, neutral good, or lawful neutral.
* * *Benefit: A soulfire spell is more potent against creatures resistant to fire. This metamagic feat can only be applied to damage-dealing spells with the Fire descriptor. Spells modified by this feat ignore resistance to fire and immunity to fire for the purpose of dealing damage. Spells modified by this metamagic feat take up a slot one level higher than normal and gain the Good descriptor, and the flames produced by the modified spell are silver.

Two As One (General) When you are using two weapons, you can make a single powerful strike with both weapons at once.
Prerequisite: Two-Weapon Fighting, Power Attack.
Benefit: When you are wielding two identical weapons, you may forego your normal full attack routine in order to make a single powerful attack. This attack, which is treated as a two-handed weapon, deals damage equal to both of your weapons. Your Strength modifier is applied to damage only once. For example, a fighter with Str 14 who used this feat with two shortwords would deal 2d6+3 points of peircing damage.

******

I'm especially uncertain about the spell slot level for Soulfire Spell.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-05, 02:34 PM
WILL NO-ONE GIVE ME ANY FEEDBACK? :'(

Sorry about the all-caps (and the double-post), but I'd really like some comments.

Tack122
2006-07-05, 02:42 PM
I would say make it possible to rebuild the focus if its destroyed

Meat Shield
2006-07-05, 02:50 PM
Well, since you asked so nicely :P Especially because we had a holiday in the middle of your posting and most people probably were not around their computers...

Personal focus: I would change the DC penaly to just be a flat -4, instead of the Charisma dependant one you have. I can't see why having a higher Cha would penalize you more on this. Same with the item destrustion clause. Maybe make it 200 XP per caster level, same as if you lose your familiar.

Soulfire Spell: Like the feat, spell slot adjustment is too low. Maximise spell is three level adjustment, and your feat potentially DOUBLES damage done, which is more than Maximise Spell. I'd say four spell slots as written at least. Substitute some holy damage for the fire damage, then it could come down.

Two as One: Good so far, sounds familiar though. I think I have seen something like it somewhere, but don't know where.

EDIT: spelling

InaVegt
2006-07-05, 02:54 PM
I think two as one is underpowered, the only use i see for this is creatures with high DR, otherwise Damage output is the same (and I'd rather have a highr chance of hitting (two attacks) than one attack)

Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-05, 03:01 PM
Personal focus: I would change the DC penaly to just be a flat -4, instead of the Charisma dependant one you have. *I can't see why having a higher Cha would penalize you more on this. *Same with the item destrustion clause. *Maybe make it 200 XP per caster level, same as if you lose your familiar.

The reason the DC and XP penalties are Cha-dependent is because of the "personal significance" thing: The Higher your Cha, the greater your attachment, the greater the penalty. Also, the binding, while significant, is not as deep as the bond between a caster and a familiar and does not increase with shared experience. Thus, for a 5th-level sorcerer with Cha 16, losing his familiar will be more painful than @ level 2, but losing his personal focus will not (unless he increased his Cha score @ 4th level).


Soulfire Spell: Like the feat, spell slot adjustment is too low. *Maximise spell is three level adjustment, and your feat potentially DOUBLES damage done, which is more than Maximise Spell. *I'd say four spell slots as written at least. *Substitute some holy damage for the fire damage, then it could come down.

Right. I knew +1 was too low. How about it deals holy damage instead of fire damage to creatures with fire resistance, holy damage plus fire damage to evil creatures, and uses up a spell slot 2 levels higher?


I think two as one is underpowered, the only use i see for this is creatures with high DR, otherwise Damage output is the same (and I'd rather have a highr chance of hitting (two attacks) than one attack)

Actually, it increases damage output by changing a pair of light or one-handed weapons into a single two-hander, thus allowing 1.5 times Str bonus and 1.5 times Power Attack goodness.

Meat Shield
2006-07-05, 03:12 PM
The reason the DC and XP penalties are Cha-dependent is because of the "personal significance" thing: The Higher your Cha, the greater your attachment, the greater the penalty. Also, the binding, while significant, is not as deep as the bond between a caster and a familiar.


Right. I knew +1 was too low. How about it deals holy damage instead of fire damage to creatures with fire resistance, holy damage plus fire damage to evil creatures, and uses up a spell slot 2 levels higher?

If the attachment is less than that for a familiar, then the penalties will be greater for losing a familiar once you reach level five (assuming 18 Cha, +1 at 4th). I still say go with the level based, not Cha based.

Holy damage instead of fire damage would be either Consecrate Spell or Purify Spell, both from Book of Exalted Deeds. Both do holy power instead of the usual spell description, consecrate subs in 1/2 holy, Purify the whole thing. Both are one spell slot higher than normal.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-10, 09:49 AM
I would say make it possible to rebuild the focus if its destroyed

... Well, sure, if you can get the bits of the original. It doesn't negate the XP penalty, though, just like raising a familiar from the dead doesn't. Or is that too stiff a price to pay?


Right. I knew +1 was too low. How about it deals holy damage instead of fire damage to creatures with fire resistance, holy damage plus fire damage to evil creatures, and uses up a spell slot 2 levels higher?

Just to clarify, evil creatures would take fire damage plus holy damage regardless of whether they had fire resistance or not.

Murky_Pool
2006-07-10, 10:46 AM
I'm not familiar with the concept of an arcane focus, is it like a cleric's divine focus item?

If so, what is the point of a personal focus?

You can use a std arcane focus item when needed or you can use something of personal significance that costs XP if you lose it and makes your spells weaker if you don't use it.

I'm missing something here, someone enlighten me

Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-10, 12:59 PM
I'm not familiar with the concept of an arcane focus, is it like a cleric's divine focus item?

If so, what is the point of a personal focus?

You can use a std arcane focus item when needed or you can use something of personal significance that costs XP if you lose it and makes your spells weaker if you don't use it.

I'm missing something here, someone enlighten me

Yes, an arcane focus is like a cleric's divine focus component. I can't think of any examples off the top of my head, but you can find examples in your copy of the PH.

There are two points to having a personal focus: 1) Character flavor; 2) You don't have to lug around multiple focus items.

If the XP loss is too great a penalty, it can go away. The point is that your personal focus is something you value (beyond its gp cost) and that when you are forced to go without it, you are demoralized and so your spells are easier to resist.

Zeful
2006-07-10, 02:38 PM
I'm not familiar with the concept of an arcane focus, is it like a cleric's divine focus item?

If so, what is the point of a personal focus?

You can use a std arcane focus item when needed or you can use something of personal significance that costs XP if you lose it and makes your spells weaker if you don't use it.

I'm missing something here, someone enlighten me
An Arcane focus is something needed to cast one spell that isn't consumed upon casting. They are pretty expensive, and numerous.

The personal focus is good, but give it some kind of progression that way it has another value.

gleep
2006-07-10, 04:58 PM
Personal Focus (General)
You can cast spells using an item of high personal significance as a focus, but your spells are less potent if you must use the standard focus item instead, and the destruction of the item is a traumatic experience.
Prerequisite: Cha 15+, ability to spontaneously cast arcane spells.
Benefit: Choose an item you possess which has great personal significance to you. For all purposes related to spellcasting, that item is now your arcane focus component. No one else can use the item in this way, even if they also possess this feat. The benefits of this feat apply only for that particular item, not items of the same kind or which have the same game effects. If you are forced to cast a spell with an arcane focus component, substituting the standard focus item for your personal focus item, that spell has a save DC of 10 + spell level - your Charisma bonus, and you take a penalty equal to your Charisma bonus on caster level checks related to that spell. If your personal focus item is ever destroyed, must make a DC 15 Fortitude save or lose 200 XP per point of Charisma bonus. A successful save reduces the XP lost to one-half the normal amount.

If I were to use this in my campaign, I'd change the spell DC to 10+cha modifier. The spell caster no longer gets the spell's level included.

However, there benefit of using eschew materials is so much better than this feat I don't see why anyone would take it, even for flavor. Just take eschew materials and wave around some focus. If it's a container, you can keep inside the rare materials you need for spells not covered by eschew materials. :)


Soulfire Spell (Metamagic)
You can call upon Vala's power and channel Her power into your fire-based spells.
Prerequisite: Ability to cast spells from the Fire domain, patron goddess Vala, alignment lawful good, neutral good, or lawful neutral.
Benefit: A soulfire spell is more potent against evil creatures and creatures with fire resistance. This metamagic feat can only be applied to damage-dealing spells with the Fire descriptor. Spells modified by this feat deal additional holy damage to evil creatures and creatures with fire resistance. The holy damage dealt is equal to the amount of fire damage that would have been dealt before any fire resistance is applied. Non-evil creatures who lack fire resistance take only fire damage. Spells modified by this metamagic feat take up a slot one level higher than normal and gain the Good descriptor, and the flames produced by the modified spell are silver.

Additional prereq: energy substitution and energy admixture. After taking this feat, the caster can use Holy as a energy type in conjunction with energy substitution and energy admixture. This will add an extra +1 to level adjustment of the spell. The holy energy is treated in the same way as sonic energy, 1 smaller die type (d6 becomes d4, etc).

Or:

When preparing a spell with the fire subtype, a cleric of Vala can expend a turn attempt for the day to deal extra holy damage.
When casting the spell, roll a turning attempt as normal, keeping note of the turning damage done. This is the amount of extra holy damage done to those effected by the spell. Creatures with higher hit dice than would be affected by the turning attempt are not damaged by the holy damage. The amount of turns to be expended must be decided upon when preparing the spell. The expended turns must be used before the next time the cleric prepares spells (or 24 hours, whichever is greater) or they are lost. The turns expended when preparing the spell do not carry over if the spell is not cast. Clerics can prepare more than one spell in this manner and can assign up to one turn attempt per class level to a spell. Spells imbued with this holy damage are 1 level higher.

I rather like the second one, I may use it.


Two As One (General) When you are using two weapons, you can make a single powerful strike with both weapons at once.
Prerequisite: Two-Weapon Fighting, Power Attack.
Benefit: When you are wielding two identical weapons, you may forego your normal full attack routine in order to make a single powerful attack. This attack, which is treated as a two-handed weapon, deals damage equal to both of your weapons. Your Strength modifier is applied to damage only once. For example, a fighter with Str 14 who used this feat with two shortwords would deal 2d6+3 points of peircing damage.

This is remarkably similar to the last ability gained by the Tempest. And that's after 5 levels of a prestige class. I don't think the prereqs for this feat are balanced enough.
If this is a full-round attack (which is implied, but not specified) it's a little more balanced, but still, I believe, problematic. At the very least, both attacks should be rolled, and both hit, to do damage.

The extra damage from using a 2-handed weapon is probably the biggest advantage of using the 2-handed weapon to begin with. Especially since a 2-handed weapon user is giving up a shield bonus. Meanwhile, a 2-weapon user has more attacks, but each attack tends to be less damaging. A 2-weapon fighter can also take 2-weapon defense (there's no single-weapon defense :) ).

Crossing the bridge between the two fighting styles with a single feat strikes me as being inherently wong.

:D

--gleep

Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-12, 09:20 AM
I like the idea of having the personal focus increase the DC of a spell, but I'm wouldn't go with a flat 10 + Cha. More powerful magic is more powerful magic, after all. I'm also considering ditching the XP penalty and going with a flat-rate DC penalty when you don't have it. I do think that the bonus to spell DCs for having the PF should be equal to the penalty for not having the PF. (Like a +4 , -4 thing.)

Should the PF maybe give a morale bonus on caster level checks?

I've revised Soulfire Spell pretty totally.



This is remarkably similar to the last ability gained by the Tempest. And that's after 5 levels of a prestige class. I don't think the prereqs for this feat are balanced enough.
If this is a full-round attack (which is implied, but not specified) it's a little more balanced, but still, I believe, problematic. At the very least, both attacks should be rolled, and both hit, to do damage.

The extra damage from using a 2-handed weapon is probably the biggest advantage of using the 2-handed weapon to begin with. Especially since a 2-handed weapon user is giving up a shield bonus. Meanwhile, a 2-weapon user has more attacks, but each attack tends to be less damaging. A 2-weapon fighter can also take 2-weapon defense (there's no single-weapon defense :) ).

Crossing the bridge between the two fighting styles with a single feat strikes me as being inherently wong.

:D

--gleep

Yes, you do sacrifice your full attack to use Two As One.

you may forego your normal full attack routine in order to make a single powerful attack.

It's one attack. Basically I came up with this feat for a martial arts style I was creating. This particular style is heavily imitative of snakes and such, so they have a technique where they jump out and stick both their sianghams into you at once, doing nasty damage. Thus, this feat was born.

That said, it's currently limited to those who dual-wield identical light or one-handed weapons. I'm leaning towards saying that only light weapons are allowed.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-13, 01:12 AM
Okay, the revised editions are here!

Personal Focus (General)
* * *You can cast spells using an item of high personal significance as a focus, but your spells are less potent if you must use the standard focus item instead.
* * *Prerequisite: Cha 15+, ability to spontaneously cast arcane spells.
* * *Benefit: Choose an item you possess which has great personal significance to you. For all purposes related to spellcasting, that item is now your arcane focus component. The DCs of your spells involving focus components increase by 2, and you gain a +2 morale bonus on caster level checks involving spells with a focus component. No one else can use the item in this way, even if they also possess this feat. The benefits of this feat apply only for that particular item, not items of the same kind or which otherwise have the same game effects.
* * *Special: If you are forced to cast a spell with an arcane focus component, substituting the standard focus item for your personal focus item, you lose all bonuses associated with using your personal focus, that spell has a save DC of 10 + spell level + Charisma modifier - 2, and you take a -2 morale penalty on caster level checks related to that spell.

Soulfire Spell (Metamagic)
* * *You can call upon Vala's power and channel Her power into your fire-based spells.
* * *Prerequisite: Ability to cast spells from the Fire domain, patron goddess Vala, alignment lawful good, neutral good, or lawful neutral.
* * *Benefit: A soulfire spell is more potent against creatures resistant to fire. This metamagic feat can only be applied to damage-dealing spells with the Fire descriptor. Spells modified by this feat ignore resistance to fire and immunity to fire for the purpose of dealing damage. Spells modified by this metamagic feat take up a slot one level higher than normal and gain the Good descriptor, and the flames produced by the modified spell are silver.

Two As One (General)
* * *When you are using two light weapons, you can make a single powerful strike with both weapons at once.
* * *Prerequisite: Two-Weapon Fighting, Power Attack, Str 13+, Dex 15+, base attack bonus +3.
* * *Benefit: When you are wielding two identical light weapons, you may forego your normal full attack routine in order to make a single powerful attack. This attack, which is treated as a two-handed weapon, deals damage equal to the sum of the damage dice of both of your weapons. Your Strength modifier is applied to this damage as if you were wielding a single two-handed weapon. For example, a fighter with Str 14 who used this feat with two shortwords would deal 2d6+3 points of peircing damage.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-07-15, 02:16 AM
*Ahem* As you can see, I have redesigned the feats, taking into account your opinions and other input. I hereby submit them to your review.

Any more PEACHing coming my way?

Fizban
2006-08-03, 12:20 AM
Hmm, lots of spells have focus componenes, and +2 DC is too much for one feat, I'd say +1 DC and +1 caster level, with a -1 to DC and caster level without the focus (otherwise it's so good all sorcerers would take it). The soulfire spell is a good idea, but compare it to scorching spell (i think thats the name): can only be applied to a fire spell, the spell ignores fire resistance and deals half damage to creatures with fire immunity, and deals double damage to those with fire vulnerability, slot level+2. I would just do the same as consecrate and have half of the damage ignore resistance/immunity for +1 level. I'm guessing two as one is to enable power attack, well I'm lost on melee feats so...

Lord Iames Osari
2006-08-15, 11:49 AM
Well, a large part of Soulfire spell is to add some game flavor.

On Personal Focus: You don't think that fact that the personal focus item can be stolen/destroyed is a balancing factor there? If not, then perhaps some additional prerequisites are in order. Anyone have anysuggestions?

Fizban
2006-08-15, 07:45 PM
It can be stolen, but will it be stolen? A wizard would treat it the same as his spellbooks, covered in protections etc. No feat should grant a +2 bonus to a DC for even one school of spells. You have it on all spells. The penalty without the focus could be mostly avoided by switching to no save spells (and for cheese you could bring you CL back up with practiced spellcaster). Making it irreplacible would just be mean: if you destroyed it the caster would be screwed for life. Unless the prerequisites got really outlandish, I don't think they could balance a +2 to all save DC's.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-08-16, 02:37 PM
But it's not all save DCs. Only spells with focus components are affected.

Edit - Okay. I went through my PH. There are roughly 366 arcane spells in there (excluding some of the Mass, Greater, and Lesser versions, and also Rary's Mnemonic Enhancer, which spontaneous casters can't get anyway), and only 61 of them have focus components. I'll be back later with numbers from my Spell Compendium, because I have no life. You know what, screw the SC.

Oh yeah, and BTW, most of the spells with focus components don't even HAVE save DCs.

Fualkner Asiniti
2006-08-16, 08:46 PM
Personal focus... underpowered. I don't really see any benifit to this, unless your spell component pouch is stolen. In that case, however, the purpose of robbing you is to make you useless at spellcasting. but in that case, why not just steal everything from them? eh?

Soulfire doesn't seem to be over-or-underpowered, but it does seem odd that you have to prepare the spell that way. I wouldn't prepare a spell that ignores fire resist unless I knew for sure if there were fire resistant enemies.

Two as one is pretty neat. good idea.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-08-16, 08:56 PM
The benefit of Personal Focus is that you no longer have to purchase and carry multiple different focus items, and you get some added bang when casting spells with focus components.

Soulfire Spell is, as I said, mostly flavor for my homebrew. "Lookitme, I'm a cleric of Vala with the Fire domain, and my burning hands spell is all pretty and silver-colored. Oh yeah, and I can hurt fire-resistant creatures with it, 'cause Vala's soulfire is just that kickass."

fangthane
2006-08-17, 03:46 PM
My thoughts (not that they've been directly solicited, but you did ask generally after all) are that Soulfire seems a bit overpowered and two-as-one seems underpowered.

Soulfire avoiding fire resistance and immunity is a bit over the top for a mere 1-level add. My suggestion for better balance would be either to increase it to a 2-level modification, or to have it blend fire and holy damage in halves (that is, a fire-immune would save vs half the original damage, and a fire-resistant would mitigate half after saving) Very interesting feat though, and I might well adapt that for some of my NPC priests (though of course the flames will be black for them)

Two-as-one seems at low level to be a fairly interesting feat, but at higher levels there are far more interesting things in which to invest, so even if there were an "Improved Two-as-one" at level 8 or so I don't see a lot of people taking it. Generally a fighter should have multiple weapons at that stage anyhow, even if he has a preference for the duals - if for nothing else, then for DR avoidance.
An adaptation of something like Rend (and a limit of 1 use per round) could be much more interesting, I think; two-as-one, as written, allows only for a two-weapon character to bypass half an opponent's DR at the cost of reducing his or her overall chance to hit, and frankly I can think of a lot of other feats my fighters would rather have at level 3-4.

Personal Focus seems like it's just about right to me; the penalty for not using it is similar to the bonus for using it, which seems fair (though I'd also stipulate a minimum 3-day process to re-attune and prepare a new focus) I'd tend to think that you might want to reduce the casting level bonus (and penalty) from 2 levels to 1, but the increased/decreased DC is certainly OK at two given that feats like Spell Focus grant a similar bonus without penalty.

One final note on Personal Focus; it might be an idea to stipulate that the caster must be able to spontaneously cast n-level arcane spells to avoid low-level abuse of spells with deliberately high-priced foci

Lord Iames Osari
2006-08-17, 04:30 PM
Fangthane, 1st let me say, Welcome to the Playground. Ahh, I remember the days when I was a mere Pixie, walking uphill both ways through 6-foot snowdrifts in the middle of July. Why back in my day, Pixies were... Wait. That was only a few months ago. Nevermind. *;D Anyway, thank you for your input.

Soulfire spell is powerful, but its use is so specific that a +1 level is appropriate. As Fualkner pointed out, you'd only ever use it if you knew you were going up against fire-resistant or -immune foes. *The rest of the time, it's just not worth it.

Two-as-one is intended to be a feat for low-level characters. Also, all of these feats were created at least in part to help develop the flavor of my homebrew world.

As for Personal Focus, that is a good suggestion on the 3-day thing. As for the reduction of the morale bonus to caster level checks, I think you're confusing caster level checks with actual caster level. Caster level determines spell effects. Caster Level checks are made most often to overcome spell resistance. Haing a bonus on caster level checks does not actually increase your caster level.

fangthane
2006-08-17, 05:01 PM
Woo, consider me egged - how much can missing a single word like "checks" affect the meaning of most sentences though, honestly?!

:)

I hate registering for online stuff so I've been lurking for ages, but I decided to heck with it, there's a lot of goodness here of which I can take advantage (I'll be posting some of my own homebrews as I put some finishing touches on them, and if getting community feedback isn't goodness I don't know what is) :)
If you're just adding it for things like (presuming) penetration and dispelling, that +2 seems fairly balanced.

As to the Soulfire, if it's meant to be exclusively for divine casters who prepare their spells ahead of time I can (grudgingly) accept that 1 level is acceptable as a penalty, but you may want to specify that only classes which prepare can use the feat, and only when it's been used in advance; I know of at least one Prestige which allows spontaneous divine casting though, and for an ad hoc metamagic effect (or for someone who's crafted a Rod) the effect may prove a little too powerful for the cost.

Of course, if you allow a corresponding evil-related feat that tends to even the scales a bit, too.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-08-17, 09:55 PM
Well, Soulfire requires access to the Fire Domain, which pretty much means you've gotta be a cleric to take it.

And yes, there is a corresponding evil feat. It's called Darkfire Spell and is exactly the same, except w with a different deity and all the alignment stuff is reversed.

fangthane
2006-08-17, 10:26 PM
If I were a cleric of Vala I'd definitely take Craft Rod... Then sell greater metamagic rods to high-level arcane casters. :)

Can you imagine the kind of damage anyone could do with 3 irresistible Firestorms or Meteor Swarms? My just-epic cleric would kill for a rod like that, and I can't imagine a sorceror over 6th who wouldn't.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-08-17, 11:26 PM
Meteor Swarm isn't a divine spell. But I see what you mean, of course, by the time you get to those levels, you're kind of expected to rip through most obstacles without even breaking a sweat.

fangthane
2006-08-17, 11:32 PM
Hmm, in that case I think you neglected to mention in the description that the spell being cast needs to be one of the divine ones from the class that qualifies you for the feat... As it stands, once the rod is made (or if the cleric of Vala used to be a sorceror) it can be used for "any damage-dealing spells with the Fire descriptor." *There are, as I say, arcane casters who'd be slaughtering one another to get something like that.

Edit - Think of this - a maximised, energy-substituted, rod-of-Vala'ed Chain Lightning. Ow. Granted you'd have to be 17th level to do it, but ow.

Lord Iames Osari
2006-08-18, 02:55 PM
It can be stolen, but will it be stolen? A wizard would treat it the same as his spellbooks, covered in protections etc.

One of the prerequisites is the abilityto spontaneously cast arcane spells. Wizards are out of luck, unless they have that feat that I can't remember the name of from Complete Arcane. Or unless they're multiclass Wizard/sorcerers. Which is just dumb.


Hmm, in that case I think you neglected to mention in the description that the spell being cast needs to be one of the divine ones from the class that qualifies you for the feat... As it stands, once the rod is made (or if the cleric of Vala used to be a sorceror) it can be used for "any damage-dealing spells with the Fire descriptor." There are, as I say, arcane casters who'd be slaughtering one another to get something like that.

Edit - Think of this - a maximised, energy-substituted, rod-of-Vala'ed Chain Lightning. Ow. Granted you'd have to be 17th level to do it, but ow.

Just a question - Why exactly shouldn't this be allowed?

fangthane
2006-08-18, 06:43 PM
Just a question - Why exactly shouldn't this be allowed?Because effectively it's a free conversion to unresistable damage. With other elemental substitution feats, the next closest thing, there's always something which can resist (in addition to any SR) the damage type. That's the value decision the caster is forced to take, whether subbing their non-<element> spells is worth the price of the rod, knowing that some opponents will resist or be immune to the substituted form. With a rod based on this feat, there's no question of whether it'll be resisted so its value is correspondingly higher. I know people have mentioned going against opponents known to have specific resistances, but there're also opponents whose resistances may be unknown. I've gone up against several white dragons with serious fire resistance and thrown them at parties, and done the same in reverse with reds. Something like Soulfire, as written, especially if roddable, completely eliminates the tactical importance of understanding not only your enemy's weaknesses, but the ways in which it's likely to have shored them up. If you know your spell's going to hit the big guy for 120 points and up to 20 targets each for 60, you're not worried about their resists, you're worried about their reflex saves or not at all.

As to high-level adventuring, I've never been of the opinion that it should go easily; death happens, often for some. I likewise don't believe that every encounter should be a walkover, even a CR or two below the party, and Soulfire has definite potential for abuse (in my view, at any rate) in that sense. If you're ok with that, then it's down to a difference of opinion so with you as DM you'd win, and with me I'd win, but in the case of your world, you have to go with how you feel. Don't let the fact I think it's flawed keep you up at night; I have issues with some of Wizards' own rules at times. :)