View Full Version : [3.5] Spell Shield - A Counterspelling Fix

2011-03-14, 05:32 PM
I had this idea for a spell to be used as a general spell-defense or my Skyships in my Magitech System. It turned out to be quite interesting, and doesn't rely on my system, though it does compliment it. I am reposting said spell here for further deliberation.

Spell Shield - 5 - When you cast this spell, you expend another at the same time. You now have a "Spell Shield" active with a number of charges equal to the level of the other spell you expended. While said shield is active, you are no longer subject to harmful spell effects. Instead, whenever you would be, you take a number of charges off of your shield equal to the level of the harmful spell. At any point you can use a standard action to expend another spell, thus further charging your Shield. There's a maximum charge of Caster Level Squared - 5*Caster Level (I would of course include a neat little table with the actual numbers for levels 1-20). The spell ends when the charge is reduced to zero. Charge degrades at 1 per minute. Dispel Magic and Greater Dispel Magic are gobbled up like any other. Disjunction on the other hand has a chance to deal some greater damage. If you cast Disjunction on a Spell Shield and have a greater CL, roll a d20. You have a 5% chance per CL you have above the other caster to deal your CL in damage to the enemy's shield. If you fail on this roll, the shield doesn't even take the 7 damage from the spell. If this Spell Shield is being cast by a Magitech Construct, the initial cost of 5 charges scales with size, but the cost to charge does not. Only Spell Shield spells can charge a Spell Shield cast on a Tapestry Construct. Using a Runestaff of Spell Shield to charge does not use up it's daily uses.

Chances are you'd want to spend a couple of rounds pumping your shield before heading into battle. In fact, if a Skyship is using this spell and is reduced to 0 charge, it's not a good idea to try to reactivate it. Doing so would cost over 300 Spell Levels and since you can't charge it in the same round it's cast, it'd likely be taken back down to 0 the same round.



Addendum/Continuation of Spell Shield - Spell shield is now 3rd level. You also now have separate values for each school of magic. If you were to use a fireball to charge your Spell Shield, it'd increase your Evocation Defense by 3. Similarly, a scorching ray then cast at you would decrease your Evocation Defense by 2. Each value degrades at 1/minute and the shield doesn't dissipate until all values are zero. Abjuration spells used to power a shield can be used to power any of the eight defenses. Abjuration spells used to take down a shield (Dispel, or Disjunction, most likely) target the Abjuration Defense first, but then can target any of the other defenses. Universal spells used to charge a shield have their levels evenly and randomly distributed among the defenses, whereas Universal spells targeted at a Spell Shield always target the highest defense. You can also cast spells to charge your shield as a move action rather than a standard action as long as said spell has a level no greater than 1/4 of your CL.

How's that?

I thought this was interesting and added some much-needed survivability to casters in terms of taking spell-blows. As it currently is, a standard Wizard Duel would be composed of initiative and then a Fort Save v Death spell. These add a bit more to these kinds of fights as you need more than a single hit to take down your opponent. And everyone knows the old Counterspelling system is almost never used. This is something that could be used to supplement some of Counterspelling's problems. The one thing that Counterspelling has on a Spell Shield is that the Shield protects only the caster. This is meant to supplement, not replace Counterspelling.

Further Note: This spell also gives a measure of resistance against Magic Weapons as long as the shield is protected against Transmutation. Up to two levels per enhancement bonus is removed from the Transmutation Defense, and in return that much of the enhancement bonus is not applied to the attack or damage roll of that attack. In the case of multiple abilities, this effect will take off the highest-bonus ability enhancement it can, working it's way down to finally taking out the normal plus values. As such, it would try to take off the "Vorpal" quality of an attack before it took the "+5". All of this is done automatically and is not controlled or determined by the caster.

2011-03-15, 02:17 AM
I have a similar ability in the game that I run in Pathfinder. I'm a big fan of Hero Points in general, so I gave each class an ability or two based on them. The Spell Shield was one I gave to mages. Expend hero points to get the shield as a standard action, how many hero points used equals how many spells thwarted, for one minute per hero point spent.

That said, I like your version better. More versatile, and as you said, extends mage battles quite a bit and allows them to be a bit more imaginative or interesting.

I personally would do away with the separation by spell school, but that's simply because I like spells being simpler. That's not to douse the merit of it, of course.

2011-03-15, 04:38 PM
Thanks for the feedback. The original version, as you see, did not have this separation. Someone wisely commented that it becomes less of a strategy game and more of a "How fast can I unload as many spell levels as possible". It's very easy to remove the distinction of schools, but it takes away a deal of the possible intricacy that comes with this spell.