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Ixil
2011-03-03, 06:10 PM
Hello!

Currently playing a soon-to-be Sorcerer/Dread Witch/Nightmare Spinner... This will only allow me one single 9th level spell... Any suggestions?

Thanks!

olelia
2011-03-03, 06:12 PM
My vote is on gate. The possibilities are endless....

Elric VIII
2011-03-03, 06:12 PM
Wish, Shapechange, or Gate.

Most bang for your buck.


EDIT: 33% ninja'd

MammonAzrael
2011-03-03, 06:23 PM
Shapechange for the least DM-dependent power. With both Wish and Gate he can more easily curtail or deny your shenanigans.

Doc Roc
2011-03-03, 06:25 PM
Shapechange is probably your best bet, I'd say, as well. There are some other good options, but I'd need to know more about your character concept.

Gorgondantess
2011-03-03, 06:26 PM
...Time stop? It's my personal favorite. A lot of the gate or shapechange stuff'll get a DMG thrown at you, and requires sourcebooks n'stuff, and you have to know what you're doing... but Time Stop is ALWAYS good.

Eldan
2011-03-03, 06:28 PM
With that much fear focus, you'll probably have some enchantment powers, and perhaps a feat or two, so Mindrape might not be bad. It's very, very useful, depending on what your DM allows you to do with it.

It's also very despicable and evil.

Vangor
2011-03-03, 06:36 PM
Effulgent Epuration from SpC. Automatically negate one targeted, harmful spell against you (or whomever you pass the spell to per round) per caster level for rounds equal to caster level.

KillianHawkeye
2011-03-03, 06:45 PM
Considering your classes, weird (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/weird.htm) would seem to fit.

Doc Roc
2011-03-03, 06:51 PM
...Time stop? It's my personal favorite. A lot of the gate or shapechange stuff'll get a DMG thrown at you, and requires sourcebooks n'stuff, and you have to know what you're doing... but Time Stop is ALWAYS good.

Well deployed, shapechange can get you timestop.

Gorgondantess
2011-03-03, 06:57 PM
Well deployed, shapechange can get you timestop.
*ehehm*

...Time stop? It's my personal favorite. A lot of the gate or shapechange stuff'll get a DMG thrown at you, and requires sourcebooks n'stuff, and you have to know what you're doing... but Time Stop is ALWAYS good.
:smalltongue:

Doc Roc
2011-03-03, 07:00 PM
*ehehm*

:smalltongue:

If you ask me what spell to take, when you only get one, it will be the spell that makes you into a terror engine with free access to all the spells you forsook. If you ask me what spell I think is fair and balanced, I'll probably just stare at you blankly.

Almost a quarter of the game's spells or more can get a DMG hurled at you.

Last Laugh
2011-03-03, 07:08 PM
Considering your classes, weird (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/weird.htm) would seem to fit.

If you choose this, do it solely for fluff reasons. Phantasmal Killer allows 2 saves to not die, duplicating it isn't so hot.

I'd say Wail of the Banshee is better even >.< (To be fair Wail of the Banshee can wreck mobs.)

JaronK
2011-03-03, 07:41 PM
If you want to blow stuff up, Maw of Chaos is always worth a laugh.

Then again, Wings of Flurry is STILL good at high levels as a blast spell, and if you Twin it it's probably better than Maw of Chaos, at least at short range.

Really, every Sorcerer should pick up Wings of Flurry.

JaronK

KillianHawkeye
2011-03-03, 07:43 PM
If you choose this, do it solely for fluff reasons. Phantasmal Killer allows 2 saves to not die, duplicating it isn't so hot.

Granted, but he gets a lot of fear-related bonuses from his class abilities, so if phantasmal killer has been working out for him, getting an area version of it might make sense and is thematic.

Tyndmyr
2011-03-03, 07:44 PM
Agreed on wings of flurry.

Maw of chaos is awesome solely because you can cast it repeatedly in a time stop. Well, compared to wings of flurry, anyhow. With only one level 9 spell, that isn't an issue.

Phantasmal killer is notoriously poor as a SoD. It's only interesting because it's available fairly early. Blowing a level 9 spell on emulating it, even en masse, is a waste.

Since wings of flurry scales awesomely, you don't need to waste your level 9 slot on mere damage. I'd probably use it on Wish. Shapechange and Gate are legit choices though. If Efreet tactics are allowed, Gate is wiser, since you can get Wish from it.

Doc Roc
2011-03-03, 07:45 PM
Granted, but he gets a lot of fear-related bonuses from his class abilities, so if phantasmal killer has been working out for him, getting an area version of it might make sense and is thematic.

It's really not what I'd reach for in this situation.

KillianHawkeye
2011-03-03, 08:05 PM
It's really not what I'd reach for in this situation.

I know. I just felt like being different and suggesting something thematic rather than powerful.

Doc Roc
2011-03-03, 08:31 PM
I know. I just felt like being different and suggesting something thematic rather than powerful.

I would suspect we can get both.

Claudius Maximus
2011-03-03, 08:43 PM
I would suspect we can get both.

Gate > Dream Larva

gbprime
2011-03-03, 08:43 PM
If you take the trouble to use Counterspell actions (especially with the Reactive Counterspell feat), then Shrinshee's Spell Shift (Lost Empires of Faerun) is AWESOME. For each counterspell attempt, you can -A- enhance the spell with Metamagic, -B- take control of the spell and determine it's target, range, and area, or -C- counter it as normal and stun the caster for 1d6 rounds.

If you don't counterspell, then I pile my vote on top of Time Stop.

Draculmaulkee
2011-03-03, 08:50 PM
Bah, who needs time stop when you can shapechange into a chronotyryn :smallbiggrin:

Doc Roc
2011-03-03, 08:54 PM
Gate > Dream Larva

Oh my GOD yes.

Vknight
2011-03-03, 09:43 PM
There is a spell in 'Book of Vile Darkness'
Auto hits like magic missile, does Fireball level damages and covers a 1-10mile area.
Perfect for use in that just in case scenario its needed.

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 12:02 AM
There is a spell in 'Book of Vile Darkness'
Auto hits like magic missile, does Fireball level damages and covers a 1-10mile area.
Perfect for use in that just in case scenario its needed.

Might want to check the material component on that spell. That's apocalypse from the sky, one of the worst spells in the game outside of specialized builds due to the fact it cannot be cast in normal play. In other builds, like Dweomerkeeper (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/we/20040522a), it becomes unspeakably obnoxious. I can think of very few things that I'd even call corner cases that would merit using AFtS in an actual game.

Saint GoH
2011-03-04, 12:17 AM
Might want to check the material component on that spell. That's apocalypse from the sky, one of the worst spells in the game outside of specialized builds due to the fact it cannot be cast in normal play. In other builds, like Dweomerkeeper (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/we/20040522a), it becomes unspeakably obnoxious. I can think of very few things that I'd even call corner cases that would merit using AFtS in an actual game.

As in, a last-resort-of-big-bad-evil-guy-because-he-knows-he-is-boned-if-he-fights-the-PC's type of specialized build?

Biffoniacus_Furiou
2011-03-04, 12:17 AM
Iceberg from Frostburn is one of my favorites. Anything that doesn't have a burrow speed gets completely screwed when you drop it on them.

Bloodline feats found in Dragon issues 311, 325, and 335 all grant you an additional spell known of every spell level. Each requires spontaneous casting and the ability to have/acquire a familiar, so if you traded your familiar for an ACF you'd need to take Obtain Familiar to get any of those. Each has a drawback of prohibiting a subschool of magic, for example the Necromantic bloodline prevents you from learning any Conjuration (Healing) spells. The Penumbra Bloodline is pretty good, it bans anything with the [Light] subtype but you get Etherealness, Greater Shadow Evocation, Plane Shift, Black Tentacles, Nondetection, etc. in addition to your normal number of spells known. Looking at the lists of spells each bloodline grants, the only really good 9th level spell that any of them grants is Shapechange from Aquatic Fey Bloodline, which prohibits Conjuration [Creation] so it's definitely not worth taking. Both Fey and Necromantic Bloodline give Wail of the Banshee, Fey prohibits anything that would create or control undead and includes a lot of illusions which could prove useful.

blazingshadow
2011-03-04, 12:48 AM
shades. probably not as good as the other spells mentioned but you still get quite a lot from it and it is an illusion spell that can synergize with whatever you have in your build (maybe)

Vknight
2011-03-04, 12:51 AM
Might want to check the material component on that spell. That's apocalypse from the sky, one of the worst spells in the game outside of specialized builds due to the fact it cannot be cast in normal play. In other builds, like Dweomerkeeper (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/we/20040522a), it becomes unspeakably obnoxious. I can think of very few things that I'd even call corner cases that would merit using AFtS in an actual game.

Still the tactical and idea of nuking a sight sounds awesome. Also I'll go check that cost.

Don't forget are Lovely Dread Necormancer probably has an army so if before the 2armies met he flies ahead pays a hefty cost then doom the enemy is gone problem solved.

Fox Box Socks
2011-03-04, 01:03 AM
Tactically, Apocalypse From The Sky isn't very useful, as a spell that's basically "kill everything in a 10 mile radius that doesn't have class levels" doesn't have as many uses as you'd think it does.

Ditto on Gate. Summon planar allies, then have them cast spells for you. Fun times.

Tvtyrant
2011-03-04, 01:08 AM
...I would probably make Prismatic Sphere, because it grants you 170 minutes of complete protection from enemy attack. You can also go in or out of it, making it great for doing a 15 minute spell memory update before attacking again.

Vknight
2011-03-04, 01:24 AM
Tactically, Apocalypse From The Sky isn't very useful, as a spell that's basically "kill everything in a 10 mile radius that doesn't have class levels" doesn't have as many uses as you'd think it does.

Ditto on Gate. Summon planar allies, then have them cast spells for you. Fun times.

I like the spell and placed it here because I've had fun with it. There is an inherant glee in destroying the world.

Kalim
2011-03-04, 01:34 AM
I like the spell and placed it here because I've had fun with it. There is an inherant glee in destroying the world.

Well, unless he's allowed to pick spells off of the Corruption domain list, and wants to kill himself and most things within two hundred miles...

Shapechange, if you're not heavily moderated, lets you use basically any other spell if you're sharp with your Monster Manuals. You can turn into something and cast free Wishes, you can turn into something else and cast free Gates, so on and so forth. All on one casting, and it has no expensive material component cost - buy the focus and you're good to go.

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 01:35 AM
Well, unless he's allowed to pick spells off of the Corruption domain list, and wants to kill himself and most things within two hundred miles...


And has a spare artifact lying around.

I've never lost a duel where I had shapechange and the other guy didn't. It's pretty much that simple.

Tvtyrant
2011-03-04, 01:49 AM
And has a spare artifact lying around.

I've never lost a duel where I had shapechange and the other guy didn't. It's pretty much that simple.

Who won initiative? I could see someone taking Improved Initiative for all of their feats and then simply Time Stop+ Delayed Blast Fireball one the first turn.

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 01:52 AM
Who won initiative? I could see someone taking Improved Initiative for all of their feats and then simply Time Stop+ Delayed Blast Fireball one the first turn.

Dire Tortoise. I did.

Claudius Maximus
2011-03-04, 02:01 AM
Also you can't take Improved Initiative more than once.

I think I read somewhere that Apocalypse from the Sky's material component should be a focus. It was either the reprint in Elder Evils (can't check now) or a FAQ document about BoVD (which is not RAW, but still food for thought).

If it really does have an artifact material component, you can probably make a pretty penny selling castings to questing hobbits.

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 02:08 AM
If it really does have an artifact material component, you can probably make a pretty penny selling castings to questing hobbits.

That's not a bad plan! I suppose it is the single most reliable way to destroy artifacts, actually.

Tvtyrant
2011-03-04, 02:24 AM
Dire Tortoise. I did.

How did you become a Dire Tortoise before initiative?

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 02:25 AM
How did you become a Dire Tortoise before initiative?

I spend my life as one! :)

Charming creatures, really.

Vulaas
2011-03-04, 02:46 AM
I spend my life as one! :)

Charming creatures, really.

This made me laugh for all the wrong reasons.

On topic, though, I would recommend Shapechange for all the reasons listed and more. It's the perfect disguise, perfect battle form, perfect everything. It can get you 9th level spells in every flavor you want, and as soon as you exhaust one type, you can move on to the next. Best of all, it's power level is as variable as the seasons. Need to pull out the big guns in a fight? Bam! You're a Solar or a Ha-Naga. Need to do something a little less crazy, but still great? Try out being a dragon for a while. Need to sneak around? You're a Gloom!

The possibilities from this one spell are almost limitless. It makes any other 9th level spell obsolete with clever usage, and even with keeping it 'toned down' it's still one of the best things to ever happen to a mage.

Tyndmyr
2011-03-04, 02:48 AM
That's not a bad plan! I suppose it is the single most reliable way to destroy artifacts, actually.

That's pretty much the corner case where it's actually useful. It is an appropriate response to a DoMT.

Not that having to get rid of artifacts comes up all that often, unless it's a MacGuffin. That'd probably make the DM cry as his plotline goes straight to hell.

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 02:52 AM
That's pretty much the corner case where it's actually useful. It is an appropriate response to a DoMT.

Not that having to get rid of artifacts comes up all that often, unless it's a MacGuffin. That'd probably make the DM cry as his plotline goes straight to hell.

I'm really tempted to write a plot around this, actually. I love the idea that in D&D, Gandalf would just take the ring from Frodo and use it to nuke Mordor.

Tyndmyr
2011-03-04, 02:59 AM
Seems logical. In a world where that spell exists, it's probably going to be used for that at least occasionally. Not that high level evil spellcasters need to destroy artifacts OFTEN....but if you do, you might as well use it to power the end of days for a huge area.

I do believe one of the Elder Evils has a plot involving it as well.

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 03:02 AM
A number of high-level printed adventures contain or revolve around artifacts, actually....

Pentachoron
2011-03-04, 03:24 AM
Seems logical. In a world where that spell exists, it's probably going to be used for that at least occasionally. Not that high level evil spellcasters need to destroy artifacts OFTEN....but if you do, you might as well use it to power the end of days for a huge area.

I do believe one of the Elder Evils has a plot involving it as well.

It's for Atropus in Elder Evils


Also you can't take Improved Initiative more than once.

I think I read somewhere that Apocalypse from the Sky's material component should be a focus. It was either the reprint in Elder Evils (can't check now) or a FAQ document about BoVD (which is not RAW, but still food for thought).

If it really does have an artifact material component, you can probably make a pretty penny selling castings to questing hobbits.

It's not in the reprint in Elder Evils, they specifically say it's a material component. So it would have to have been in the FAQ document.

Killer Angel
2011-03-04, 06:39 AM
Ditto on Gate. Summon planar allies, then have them cast spells for you. Fun times.

I still favor Shapechange.
It's the difference between calling Chuck Norris for help, and be Chuck Norris. :smallcool:

Of course, it's not like sitting and watching your friends' show... :smalltongue:

Gullintanni
2011-03-04, 08:03 AM
I still favor Shapechange.
It's the difference between calling Chuck Norris for help, and be Chuck Norris. :smallcool:

Of course, it's not like sitting and watching your friends' show... :smalltongue:

The problem with this is that Shapechanging into a Solar doesn't grant you their Cleric casting. Gating the Solar on the other hand does. Moreover, the Solar gets to act independently. You're also grinding the action economy into a fine powder.

...Use cautiously. Chain Gating yields falling rocks.

Mr.Bookworm
2011-03-04, 08:18 AM
Tactically, Apocalypse From The Sky isn't very useful, as a spell that's basically "kill everything in a 10 mile radius that doesn't have class levels" doesn't have as many uses as you'd think it does.

Give the spell credit where it's due. It's kill everything below level five (an average of 35 sonic damage), within a minimum of 170 miles. It's area is 10 miles per level.

Of course, casting it might put you in a coma, merely knowing it pings you with ability damage, it takes a full day to cast, it requires an artifact as a material component (though given that the BoVD lists angel tears as a artifact, that might not be as big a problem as you would think), and, of course, everyone now hates you.

Still a fun spell when you absolutely positively need to kill off all of those Commoners.

My vote goes to Gate, used responsibly.

Killer Angel
2011-03-04, 08:19 AM
The problem with this is that Shapechanging into a Solar doesn't grant you their Cleric casting. Gating the Solar on the other hand does. Moreover, the Solar gets to act independently. You're also grinding the action economy into a fine powder.

...Use cautiously. Chain Gating yields falling rocks.

All true things (edit: and I know Angel Summoner is the top).
But I can be a Solar for this round, and something else in the subsequent.
And I don't have to suffer the DM saying "you see the Solar is annoyed by your call". :smalltongue:

So yeah, it's more about personal tastes on cheese... :smallsmile:

Gullintanni
2011-03-04, 08:29 AM
All true things (edit: and I know Angel Summoner is the top).
But I can be a Solar for this round, and something else in the subsequent.
And I don't have to suffer the DM saying "you see the Solar is annoyed by your call". :smalltongue:

So yeah, it's more about personal tastes on cheese... :smallsmile:

Personally, as a DM, I don't find it all that cheesy. Yes the Solar is annoyed, (moreso for being compelled to act in my favor). It's an I-win button for one encounter...but it costs me 1000xp. The real benefit of Shapechange over gate is the lack of XP cost. Sure my Shapechanging into a Solar doesn't yield spells, but I'm still powerful enough in melee to wrap up any level appropriate encounter (and even a few higher than appropriate encounters) and I don't have to spend any xp. If anything, I'd say that, barring wish-loops, miracles and chain-gating, Shapechange is cheesier than Gate. Most of the wish-loop, chain-gate, miracle abuse that Gate allows can be negated simply by ruling that these functions, having a permanent xp cost, constitute a longer than instantaneous service and as a result, activate the bargaining clause of the Gate spell.

...nothing abusive about that reading of Gate. It's not RAW, but it's a simple solution to the problem. Also, Shapechanging into 11 headed Hydras is mean. I don't like it! :smallamused:

Chen
2011-03-04, 08:46 AM
Don't Solar's have too many HD to shapechange into (pre-Epic anyways)? Gate has that non-errata'd "double your caster level in HD" cap whereas Shapechange is limited to "your caster level in HD" as the cap.

Either way both spells are far too good. You're going to wreck any encounter with them unless the DM specifically prepares the encounter to counter them.

Eldan
2011-03-04, 08:51 AM
So the question becomes...

Can you apply Explosive spell to Apocalypse from the Sky?

Quietus
2011-03-04, 09:12 AM
So the question becomes...

Can you apply Explosive spell to Apocalypse from the Sky?

With 10th level spell slots (explosive is +1 right?), yes. Or metamagic reducers.

Psyren
2011-03-04, 09:18 AM
Effulgent Epuration from SpC. Automatically negate one targeted, harmful spell against you (or whomever you pass the spell to per round) per caster level for rounds equal to caster level.

Use Wings of Cover to block harmful spells and save your 9th for something else imo.

I personally prefer Gate to Shapechange but either is fine.

Darth Stabber
2011-03-04, 09:46 AM
If I only get one, Time Stop. If you can't think of any thing awesome to do with 2-5 rounds of unmolested time alone, you don't deserve to play a caster. Gate has a huge cost, and any of the polymorph spells have a butt ton of balance issues.

Ixil
2011-03-04, 10:33 AM
Ok, never thought I'd get so many answers in so little time... From the options given by y'all, my preference goes to Gate and Shapechange... At least for the kind of subtle, scary-as-hell character I'm playing...

That said, and not wanting to abuse anyone's good will, is there a Gate Handbook or Shapechange Handbook? (I'm more inclined to Shapechange, but the errata is a buzz-killer...)

Thanks!

P.S. - As to Time Stop, in reality my spell lists are really outdated, since I haven't played a spellcaster for ages... My present spell list has mostly targeted spells, and that's a big no-no on Time Stop, if I can remember correctly...

gbprime
2011-03-04, 10:42 AM
P.S. - As to Time Stop, in reality my spell lists are really outdated, since I haven't played a spellcaster for ages... My present spell list has mostly targeted spells, and that's a big no-no on Time Stop, if I can remember correctly...

Yeah, Time Stop works best if you need to self-buff or throw up wall spells. Forcecage is my favorite. Littering the area in Streamers works too.

senrath
2011-03-04, 10:56 AM
Most of the wish-loop, chain-gate, miracle abuse that Gate allows can be negated simply by ruling that these functions, having a permanent xp cost, constitute a longer than instantaneous service and as a result, activate the bargaining clause of the Gate spell.

Except that they, um, don't have a permanent xp cost. SLAs of spells that have xp costs don't have xp costs.


Don't Solar's have too many HD to shapechange into (pre-Epic anyways)? Gate has that non-errata'd "double your caster level in HD" cap whereas Shapechange is limited to "your caster level in HD" as the cap.


It's criminally easy to get the +2 CL you need to shapechange into a Solar at level 20.

Gullintanni
2011-03-04, 11:45 AM
Don't Solar's have too many HD to shapechange into (pre-Epic anyways)? Gate has that non-errata'd "double your caster level in HD" cap whereas Shapechange is limited to "your caster level in HD" as the cap.

Either way both spells are far too good. You're going to wreck any encounter with them unless the DM specifically prepares the encounter to counter them.

Actually, Gate has been errata'd IIRC. I'd have to do some digging, but I believe it's been set to your caster level in HD.


Except that they, um, don't have a permanent xp cost. SLAs of spells that have xp costs don't have xp costs.



It's criminally easy to get the +2 CL you need to shapechange into a Solar at level 20.

Also, if I'm not mistaken, Solars don't Gate as SLAs, they Gate as divine spells. They also don't have the CL to Gate in another Solar, though see below. They also don't typically have Gate prepared. They DO get Permanency as an SLA though. And Wish. That said, Chain Gating (with Solars) is impossible except through abuse of that SLA wish. But that can be shut down pretty easily with some simple Wish perversion. I'm sure there are other creatures that can SLA Gate, but once you've got Wish as an SLA it doesn't matter.

As noted though, it's ridiculously easy to get +2 CL. Bead of Karma, Ioun Stones, Divine Spell Power, Consumptive Field, Death Knell...there's a whole handbook on it but those are a few of the easy ways.

EDIT: Chain Gates are best accomplished using Titans. SLA style. For fun and profit.

Doc Roc
2011-03-04, 01:03 PM
Traditionally, you ask them to wish for a candle. This is very far from what the original question was.

Another_Poet
2011-03-04, 02:16 PM
EDIT: 33% ninja'd

When you find 1/3 of a ninja, it's a pretty clear sign to get the heck out.

Zanticor
2011-03-04, 05:34 PM
I just can not believe the best 9th level spell did not get a mention yet. It is arguably so much the best spell in the PHB1 that it is banned in most games. Not by the DM but by player consensus. Still if you are up to getting the PHB thrown at you, just pick:

Mordenkainen's Disjunction :smalleek:

sreservoir
2011-03-04, 05:48 PM
A material component is one or more physical substances or objects that are annihilated by the spell energies in the casting process. Unless a cost is given for a material component, the cost is negligible. Donít bother to keep track of material components with negligible cost. Assume you have all you need as long as you have your spell component pouch.

you have all the artifacts you need in your spell component pouch. go spam AFtS.

Eldan
2011-03-04, 06:13 PM
The question, of course, is whether their cost is negligible.

sreservoir
2011-03-04, 06:35 PM
The question, of course, is whether their cost is negligible.

since no cost is given, it is.

Kalim
2011-03-04, 06:43 PM
I just can not believe the best 9th level spell did not get a mention yet. It is arguably so much the best spell in the PHB1 that it is banned in most games. Not by the DM but by player consensus. Still if you are up to getting the PHB thrown at you, just pick:

Mordenkainen's Disjunction :smalleek:

Disjunction is only super scary when used against players, I think.

Typically, the players will have many more magical items to get ruined by a Disjunction than their foes will. Most people won't use it against the bad guys because it's a green light for the DM to use it against them.

Mass Harm is a nice 9th spell to trivialize stuff, but it's only on the Dread Necromancer list as far as I know.

Ixil
2011-03-07, 05:34 PM
So, regarding the Shapechange spell, according to the polymorph subschool, "The target loses all of the special abilities it has in its normal form, including its class features (even if the new form would normally be able to use these class features)." Since the caster also can't use the SLA of the new form... What can the caster do that's worth it?

Toliudar
2011-03-07, 05:54 PM
The shapechanger can use any Supernatural or Extraordinary ability of the new form. Pyrohydras, dragon breath, Aboleth domination, earthglide, flying...even without spells, even with MMI only, shapechange is a trip to the funhouse. Additional splatbooks just make more insane.

ericgrau
2011-03-07, 07:02 PM
I'd want something spammable without an xp cost (which also reduces spammability). Crushing hand seems pretty good. It gets a +16 to grapple in addition to your caster level + charisma modifier, meaning even huge things are good targets. With no save and a massive check you may disable a foe per round or at least force foes to waste turns moving and attacking hands (don't forget ranged attacks have a 50% chance of hitting either grappler). 90 damage over 5 rounds is icing on the cake. Meteor swarm is good if your DM likes to send lots of mooks, but so-so otherwise. Weird seems good against most things as a good multi-target save or stunned or dead. Good crowd control. Lousy in some campaigns as mind affecting fear though.

At 80% real shades might be okay if you can't find another consistent spell, but I'd rather have a good 9th level spell than a semi-8th level spell if possible. Time stop and shapechange are likewise versatile options but they merely provide the means for lower level buffs or a wide variety of 17 HD or so monsters. Being able to choose anything is impressive but the power level of each individual thing is not. OTOH if you already have some good buffs and some good 8th level attack spells for after the buffing then time stop seems pretty good.

Everything else seems too situational or has an xp cost. I'd at least give them a look in case you're in a very specific kind of campaign, but I doubt it. He mentioned he's actually playing this character so I've ignored infinite chain cheese and so on.

Nerocite
2011-03-07, 07:34 PM
Why not Dominate Monster, to make your enemies fight for you? And it lasts One day/level, so once a day isn't a problem.

The Cat Goddess
2011-03-07, 07:58 PM
Why not Dominate Monster, to make your enemies fight for you? And it lasts One day/level, so once a day isn't a problem.

Actually, the problem isn't that he could only cast it once a day... it's that he only has one spell he can cast (and, as a Sorcerer-type caster, cast it probably multiple times per day).

Claudius Maximus
2011-03-07, 08:16 PM
So, regarding the Shapechange spell, according to the polymorph subschool, "The target loses all of the special abilities it has in its normal form, including its class features (even if the new form would normally be able to use these class features)." Since the caster also can't use the SLA of the new form... What can the caster do that's worth it?

The polymorph subschool doesn't actually change the effects of previous spells like Alter Self, Polymorph, and Shapechange. The count as polymorph subschool spells, but they don't have to follow the rules of the subschool. So you can cast spells just fine under the effects of Shapechange.

Ixil
2011-03-08, 09:13 AM
The polymorph subschool doesn't actually change the effects of previous spells like Alter Self, Polymorph, and Shapechange. The count as polymorph subschool spells, but they don't have to follow the rules of the subschool. So you can cast spells just fine under the effects of Shapechange.

I would guess that spellcasting is a class feature for the Sorcerer, so in what way does "The target loses all of the special abilities it has in its normal form, including its class features (even if the new form would normally be able to use these class features)." mean that the Sorcerer will be able to cast spells (his class feature) in a new form? Just trying to understand, here...

Thanks!

mootoall
2011-03-08, 10:02 AM
For theme and power combined, I'd go mindrape all the way. Your juicy bonuses from Dread Witch makes it so worth it, and it solves most of your plots. Combine with scrolls of Love's Pain for hilarious world ending. Actually, if you can get your DM to work it, you can go for a Men in Black style thing. *Figures out potential cost for Eternal Wand of Mindrape*

Ixil
2011-03-08, 10:54 AM
For theme and power combined, I'd go mindrape all the way. Your juicy bonuses from Dread Witch makes it so worth it, and it solves most of your plots. Combine with scrolls of Love's Pain for hilarious world ending. Actually, if you can get your DM to work it, you can go for a Men in Black style thing. *Figures out potential cost for Eternal Wand of Mindrape*

Mindrape looks sweet, but unfortunately, in my usual party, BoVD isn't allowed for PC's... :smallsigh:

Tyndmyr
2011-03-08, 11:16 AM
When you find 1/3 of a ninja, it's a pretty clear sign to get the heck out.

Unless you too are a ninja. In which case, conservation of ninjitsu means you just got more badass.

Moot, sadly eternal wands only go up to 3rd level. No eternal wand of mindrape for you. However, may I direct you to Spell Clocks?

Gullintanni
2011-03-08, 11:18 AM
I would guess that spellcasting is a class feature for the Sorcerer, so in what way does "The target loses all of the special abilities it has in its normal form, including its class features (even if the new form would normally be able to use these class features)." mean that the Sorcerer will be able to cast spells (his class feature) in a new form? Just trying to understand, here...

Thanks!

I'm AFB right now, but I'm pretty sure Alter Self specifies that you retain your own abilities, including class features. Polymorph specifies that it works like Alter Self except where noted...and it doesn't specify that you lose class features. Shapechange specifies that it works like Polymorph except where noted, which means it also works like Alter Self, except where noted by Polymorph and Shapechange.

So, given that all of the common Polymorph spells players abuse function like Alter Self except where noted, and Alter Self specifies that you retain your class features, you DO in fact...retain spellcasting as a sorcerer when Alter Self'd, Polymorphed or Shapechanged.

Edit: SRD to the rescue!

From Alter Self:
You retain your own ability scores. Your class and level, hit points, alignment, base attack bonus, and base save bonuses all remain the same. You retain all supernatural and spell-like special attacks and qualities of your normal form, except for those requiring a body part that the new form does not have (such as a mouth for a breath weapon or eyes for a gaze attack).

You keep all extraordinary special attacks and qualities derived from class levels, but you lose any from your normal form that are not derived from class levels.

Emphasis mine. Note that spell-like special attacks does not read Spell Like Abilities, so it may be talking about SLA's exclusively, or SLA's and Spellcasting. There's debateable RAW here, but Alter Self seems to have text built into it that overrides the Polymorph Subschools text, and allows spellcasters to retain their casting.

Then from Polymorph:
This spell functions like alter self.

If Alter Self doesn't deny you class level spellcasting, then neither does Polymorph. The two spells function identically, except where otherwise noted.

From Polymorph any Object:
This spell functions like polymorph, except that it changes one object or creature into another.

By RAW, PAO doesn't deny spellcasting to the target, even if it's changed into a non-sentient creature. It does; however, grant the target the intelligence score of its new form. If that happens to be non intelligent, then I suspect that may inhibit casting somewhat.

From Shapechange:
This spell functions like polymorph, except that it enables you to assume the form of any single nonunique creature (of any type) from Fine to Colossal size. The assumed form cannot have more than your caster level in Hit Dice (to a maximum of 25 HD)

and

but you lose your own supernatural abilities.

...if you read that sorcerer spellcasting is a Su. ability, then you lose it. Spellcasting, by RAW, isn't a Su. ability though.

Bottom Line: All of these spells essentially behave exactly like Alter Self, except where noted in the spells entry. None of them contradict the clause in alter-self that suggests you retain your class levels and abilities of your natural form (one of which is, in the case of a character with caster levels, spellcasting). By RAW, none of the Polymorph spells I've discussed deny spellcasting to classes that have it as a Class Ability.

These spells DO follow the rules of the Polymorph Subschool...but specific trumps general, therefore the specific text of the spells themselves overrides any contradictory clauses of the Polymorph Subschool.

Qwertystop
2011-03-08, 11:43 AM
So the question becomes...

Can you apply Explosive spell to Apocalypse from the Sky?

It's much better to do Invisible Apocalypse From the Sky.


I personally love Invisible Apocalypse from the Sky (Oh god, oh god, WHY IS EVERYTHING EXPLODING?!?), and Invisible Shadow Landscape (WHERE DID THE WORLD GO?!?)

Beheld
2011-03-08, 11:52 AM
I would guess that spellcasting is a class feature for the Sorcerer, so in what way does "The target loses all of the special abilities it has in its normal form, including its class features (even if the new form would normally be able to use these class features)." mean that the Sorcerer will be able to cast spells (his class feature) in a new form? Just trying to understand, here...

Thanks!

The rules for the Polymorph subschool do not apply to Alter Self, Polymorph, Polymorph Any Object, or Shapechange. They say that right there.

You keep all your class features.

EDIT: Since I'm posting in this thread. Choose Shapechange, seeing as Gate and Wish cost XP, unlikely you will want to spend 4-8 castings a day or 4000-40,000XP per day on casting 9th level slots.

Darth Stabber
2011-03-08, 11:55 AM
I change my answer: Shades (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/shades.htm).

There are so many bad thing you can do to people with this spell. And even if disbelieved you get 80%. With a feat (don't remember which), you get 100% effectiveness either way. with another feat (don't remember it either) it actually gets more effective against disbelievers. (unfortunately it causes you 2d6 bludgeoning damage from a thrown DMG).

mootoall
2011-03-08, 12:16 PM
Moot, sadly eternal wands only go up to 3rd level. No eternal wand of mindrape for you. However, may I direct you to Spell Clocks? Which is why I wanted to figure out the price via formula. Though I'll check out Spell Clocks. What book?

Ixil
2011-03-08, 12:20 PM
I'm AFB right now, but I'm pretty sure Alter Self specifies that you retain your own abilities, including class features. Polymorph specifies that it works like Alter Self except where noted...and it doesn't specify that you lose class features. Shapechange specifies that it works like Polymorph except where noted, which means it also works like Alter Self, except where noted by Polymorph and Shapechange.

So, given that all of the common Polymorph spells players abuse function like Alter Self except where noted, and Alter Self specifies that you retain your class features, you DO in fact...retain spellcasting as a sorcerer when Alter Self'd, Polymorphed or Shapechanged.

Edit: SRD to the rescue!

From Alter Self:
You retain your own ability scores. Your class and level, hit points, alignment, base attack bonus, and base save bonuses all remain the same. You retain all supernatural and spell-like special attacks and qualities of your normal form, except for those requiring a body part that the new form does not have (such as a mouth for a breath weapon or eyes for a gaze attack).

You keep all extraordinary special attacks and qualities derived from class levels, but you lose any from your normal form that are not derived from class levels.

Emphasis mine. Note that spell-like special attacks does not read Spell Like Abilities, so it may be talking about SLA's exclusively, or SLA's and Spellcasting. There's debateable RAW here, but Alter Self seems to have text built into it that overrides the Polymorph Subschools text, and allows spellcasters to retain their casting.

Then from Polymorph:
This spell functions like alter self.

If Alter Self doesn't deny you class level spellcasting, then neither does Polymorph. The two spells function identically, except where otherwise noted.

From Polymorph any Object:
This spell functions like polymorph, except that it changes one object or creature into another.

By RAW, PAO doesn't deny spellcasting to the target, even if it's changed into a non-sentient creature. It does; however, grant the target the intelligence score of its new form. If that happens to be non intelligent, then I suspect that may inhibit casting somewhat.

From Shapechange:
This spell functions like polymorph, except that it enables you to assume the form of any single nonunique creature (of any type) from Fine to Colossal size. The assumed form cannot have more than your caster level in Hit Dice (to a maximum of 25 HD)

and

but you lose your own supernatural abilities.

...if you read that sorcerer spellcasting is a Su. ability, then you lose it. Spellcasting, by RAW, isn't a Su. ability though.

Bottom Line: All of these spells essentially behave exactly like Alter Self, except where noted in the spells entry. None of them contradict the clause in alter-self that suggests you retain your class levels and abilities of your natural form (one of which is, in the case of a character with caster levels, spellcasting). By RAW, none of the Polymorph spells I've discussed deny spellcasting to classes that have it as a Class Ability.

These spells DO follow the rules of the Polymorph Subschool...but specific trumps general, therefore the specific text of the spells themselves overrides any contradictory clauses of the Polymorph Subschool.

Thanks dude!

I guess what got around my head was that although the polymorph subschool states a lot of stuff, it then says the "original" spell's description is what counts... making most of the description in the subschool worthless...

Well, guess I have a winner, I'll go for Shapechange... :smallbiggrin:

grimbold
2011-03-08, 02:02 PM
Wish or Gate
however they are both kinda broken

Aspenor
2011-03-08, 05:25 PM
probably Shapechange or Gate, because you can get access to every other spell noted here by using them intelligently.

Ixil
2011-03-08, 05:42 PM
As Beheld said, I'll be a Sorcerer casting this same spell a few times per day, so XP cost should be a big no-no...

Ixil
2011-03-13, 10:04 AM
In case it's of interest to anyone, the final spell selection is as follows:

0 level
Detect Magic
Detect Poison
Disrupt Undead
Ghost Sound
Mage Hand
Prestidigitation
Ray of Frost
Read Magic
Resistance
1st level
Benign Transposition
Cause Fear
Magic Missile
Ray of Clumsiness
Shield
2nd level
Blindness/Deafness
Mirror Image (since I'll also get Greater Invisibility, I'll have to change this to something else, not quite sure what exactly)
Phantasmal Assailants
Ray of Stupidity
Scare
Bane (from Dread Witch)
Doom (from Dread Witch)
3rd level
Haste
Manyjaws
Ray of Exhaustion
Vampiric Touch
4th level
Fear
Greater Invisibility
Phantasmal Killer
Sensory Deprivation
5th level
Night's Caress
Spiritwall
Waves of Fatigue
Wrack
6th level
Heartfreeze
Fleshshiver
Overwhelm
7th level
Avasculate
Reverse Gravity
Solipsism
8th level
Blackfire
Horrid Wilting
9th level
Shapechange

If you don't give a cr*p, just ignore this post... :smallwink: