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View Full Version : A sorcerer boost (3.5 Core, PEACH)



Yitzi
2011-09-13, 10:49 AM
In comparisons between sorcerers and wizards, sorcerers usually come off second-best. They might get better short-term versatility and spells/day, but have far less long-term versatility, and are an overall less interesting class due to the lack of class features. While my wizard fix (linked in my sig) does hit wizards harder than sorcerers and narrows the gap, the sorcerer can still use a little something extra. Therefore, I propose giving it the following class features:

-A sorcerer may choose to learn one of his spells known with one or more metamagic effects (including Quicken Spell if he so desires). If he does so, it takes a Spells Known slot as its level including the metamagic cost, and he may not cast the spell without the metamagic effect (unless he learns it in that form as a seperate spell known, but he may (and must) apply the effect to that spell without spending the extra time for casting the spell spontaneously He does not need the relevant metamagic feat in order to learn and cast a spell affected in this manner.

Child of Magic (level 1, Su)
A sorcerer is naturally magical in a way that few other beings are. He gains spell resistance equal to 5+class level. This spell resistance can be lowered or raised as a free action, even when it is not his turn. Furthermore, Spell Penetration gives no bonus on checks to penetrate this spell resistance.
In addition, if any spell or spell-like ability is resisted by this ability and the sorcerer was the spell's only target, the sorcerer absorbs the magic inherent in the resisted spell. He gains one additional spell slot of one spell level lower than the negated spell or spell-like ability, or of a lower level if he so desires. In addition, if the negated spell (or the spell imitated by the spell-like ability) was a sorcerer/wizard spell of a level he is able to cast, he may add it to his spells known. A sorcerer may only have up to one "bonus" spell known of this sort at any given level; if he gains another he must give up one spell known of that level.
If the spell was affected by metamagic, the metamagic cost is included in the spell level, and if he gains the spell he gains it in its metamagicked form.
If a sorcerer has more spell slots of a particular level than his normal maximum, he must make a Charisma check each hour (DC=10+spell level+number of extra spell slots+number of continuous hours he has been over the maximum) or lose a spell slot of that level. If he has extra spell slots of multiple levels, he must make a separate check for each level.
Likewise, if a sorcerer has more spells known of a particular level than his normal maximum, he must make a Charisma check each hour (DC=11+spell level+number of continuous hours he has been over the maximum) or lose a spell known (his choice) of that level. If he has extra spell slots of multiple levels, he must make a separate check for each level.

Draw Magic (level 5, Su)
A sorcerer's affinity for magic allows him to draw off the power of spells. As an at-will standard action, the sorcerer may attempt to draw off the power of a spell, ending it as though it had been dispelled. Draw Magic can affect any spell subject to Greater Dispel Magic.
The sorcerer may choose to use Draw Magic in one of two ways:
Targeted Draw Magic
One object, creature, or spell is the target of the draw magic effect. The sorcerer must make a dispel check (1d20+class level, uncapped) against the spell with the highest caster level. If that check fails, he makes dispel checks against progressively weaker spells until he draws off the energy of one spell or until he fails all his checks. The DC for any dispel check using Draw Magic is 16+the spell's caster level.
If the sorcerer successfully draws off a spell from the spell's only target, he may gain a spell level and possibly a spell known as though he had resisted the drawn spell with his Child of Magic ability.
If the sorcerer targets an object or creature that is the effect of an ongoing spell (such as a monster summoned by monster summoning), he may make a dispel check to end the spell that conjured the object or creature. If he fails, he then makes dispel checks against spells affecting the creature, in order of strength.
If the object that the sorcerer targets is a magic item, he makes a dispel check against the itemís caster level. If he succeeds, all the itemís magical properties are suppressed for 1d4 rounds, just as if it had been successfully dispelled.
A sorcerer automatically succeeds on any draw magic check against any spell that he cast himself.

Counterspell
When draw magic is used in this way (which requires a readied action like any counterspell), the spell targets a spell being cast and is cast as a counterspell. Unlike a true counterspell, however, draw magic may not work; the sorcerer must make a dispel check to counter the other spellcasterís spell. If he does successfully counter the spell, he gains a spell level, and possibly spell slot, as though the countered spell had been negated by his Child of Magic ability. (The spell's subjectivity to spell resistance and targeting are irrelevant, even if they mean that it could never actually be resisted in a manner that grants a bonus spell level.)

After using Draw Magic, a sorcerer cannot use it again until 1d4 rounds later.


Mass Draw Magic (level 10, Su):
As a sorcerer grows in power, he gains the ability to draw off the power of multiple spells at once. When using the Draw Magic ability, he may choose to make a dispel check against each spell on his target (as with a targeted Dispel Magic, although the DC remains 16+the spell's caster level), or to affect all targets within a 20' radius (as with an area Dispel Magic, although the DC is the same as for Draw Magic). If he chooses either of these options, he cannot gain extra spell slots or spells known from that use of Draw Magic.

Transfer Spell (level 15, Su):
The sorcerer gains the ability to draw off entire spells without damaging them and reuse them. Whenever he suceeds with the use of Draw Magic and would gain a spell slot and spell known, he may instead give up spell slot to cast, as a free action and without using a spell slot, the drawn spell. All decisions except targeting and all features (e.g. caster level) are as the original spell, and if the spell has a non-instantaneous duration the duration of the new spell is reduced by the expired duration of the original spell.

Quickened Draw Magic (level 20, Ex):
When a sorcerer reaches level 20, he gains the ability to use Draw Magic (and Mass Draw Magic) at will.

Thoughts?

Ziegander
2011-09-13, 11:52 AM
Child of Magic is an interesting idea, but seems excessively complicated and powerful (Charisma checks every hour? Sometimes a handful of checks? Blech!). From there everything goes downhill. At 5th level you're effectively giving them a 6th level spell at-will and every 5 levels you improve that spell by an incredible amount.

To be honest, the bit about learning metamagicked spells without needing the metamagic feats is pretty awesome in and of itself and definitely helps the Sorcerer compare more favorably to the Wizard already. The rest of the stuff you aim to aid to the Sorcerer cause its power level to skyrocket. If the goal is to raise it from Tier 2 to the upper decks of Tier 1, I'm not sure you succeeded, but you're certainly on the right track.

Yitzi
2011-09-13, 01:00 PM
Child of Magic is an interesting idea, but seems excessively complicated and powerful (Charisma checks every hour? Sometimes a handful of checks? Blech!).

I don't want him to be able to hold on to the bonus spells and spells known for too long, but not too low either; 1 check per hour seemed a good balance.


From there everything goes downhill. At 5th level you're effectively giving them a 6th level spell at-will and every 5 levels you improve that spell by an incredible amount.

Firstly, at low levels it's a lot more like a third level spell (dispel magic) than a sixth level; the only advantage GDM has over DM before level 10 is the ability to also serve as Remove Curse for some purposes.

It's also weaker than Dispel Magic in two very significant ways. Firstly, it can (until level 10) only affect one spell, whereas Dispel Magic can be used either on an area or on every spell affecting a target. Secondly, the DC is 5 higher, meaning that the chance of success against an equal-level spell is only 25%.


To be honest, the bit about learning metamagicked spells without needing the metamagic feats is pretty awesome in and of itself and definitely helps the Sorcerer compare more favorably to the Wizard already. The rest of the stuff you aim to aid to the Sorcerer cause its power level to skyrocket. If the goal is to raise it from Tier 2 to the upper decks of Tier 1, I'm not sure you succeeded, but you're certainly on the right track.

It's actually to combine with the wizard fix to keep it at tier 3. (And metamagic (except Heighten) is made quite a bit less useful by the wizard fix, due to high save DCs being both more important and harder to achieve.)

Ziegander
2011-09-13, 01:07 PM
I don't want him to be able to hold on to the bonus spells and spells known for too long, but not too low either; 1 check per hour seemed a good balance.

I understand your reasons behind the mechanic, I just feel like it's too complicated in some ways, and really powerful in other ways. At low levels it's fine, but once Draw Magic and friends come into the picture it can get silly.


Firstly, at low levels it's a lot more like a third level spell (dispel magic) than a sixth level; the only advantage GDM has over DM before level 10 is the ability to also serve as Remove Curse for some purposes.

Which is a significant advantage, and not Draw Magic's only advantage.


It's also weaker than Dispel Magic in two very significant ways. Firstly, it can (until level 10) only affect one spell, whereas Dispel Magic can be used either on an area or on every spell affecting a target. Secondly, the DC is 5 higher, meaning that the chance of success against an equal-level spell is only 25%.

I did miss the 5 higher DC, which is significant, I'll give you that, but the ability to absorb the spell and gain a temporary spell slot and spell known? That is worth more than all of the disadvantages combined. So, I'll compromise and say that you're giving them an ability akin to a very powerful 4th level spell at-will. And, again, the usefulness and power level of this feature skyrocket as the Sorcerer gains levels.


It's actually to combine with the wizard fix to keep it at tier 3. (And metamagic (except Heighten) is made quite a bit less useful by the wizard fix, due to high save DCs being both more important and harder to achieve.)

You need to make a consolidated list of your houserules and class fixes if you want all of them to be considered together before critique is given. Jumping between 7 or 8 threads just to critique one part is annoying at best.

Yitzi
2011-09-13, 01:19 PM
I understand your reasons behind the mechanic, I just feel like it's too complicated in some ways, and really powerful in other ways. At low levels it's fine, but once Draw Magic and friends come into the picture it can get silly.

I don't really see that much complexity (then again, I tend to not worry too much about things being complicated), and the direct-combat power (as opposed to the strategic power of being able to replenish spell slots occasionally and switch around spells known) of Draw Magic is roughly 1/2 to 1/6 that of Dispel (half the chance, can only affect 1 spell) at level 5, 1/2 that of Dispel at level 10, 1/2 to equal that of Greater Dispel at level 15 (since if it's only on 1 spell you can then recast it, compensating for the half chance of success), and 1/2 to equal that of Quickened Greater Dispel at level 20.


Which is a significant advantage

Wait, how is the ability to imitate a 3rd level spell with 25% success chance such a big advantage?


and not Draw Magic's only advantage.

What others are there (except at high levels)?


I did miss the 5 higher DC, which is significant, I'll give you that, but the ability to absorb the spell and gain a temporary spell slot and spell known? That is worth more than all of the disadvantages combined.

Why? As a sorcerer, he's got quite a number of spell slots anyway, and because they're so temporary he can't build up a large repetoire of spells he can cast (if he works hard, he might be able to match the wizard at his best moments.)


You need to make a consolidated list of your houserules and class fixes if you want all of them to be considered together before critique is given. Jumping between 7 or 8 threads just to critique one part is annoying at best.

I did reference it in the post.

That said, a consolidated list does make sense. Would you advise just links in my sig (the current plan), or a separate thread with links, or a thread with all the stuff? (I still wouldn't want to make all the stuff in one thread, as that will just get too big to critique.)

Ziegander
2011-09-13, 01:40 PM
I don't really see that much complexity (then again, I tend to not worry too much about things being complicated), and the direct-combat power (as opposed to the strategic power of being able to replenish spell slots occasionally and switch around spells known) of Draw Magic is roughly 1/2 to 1/6 that of Dispel (half the chance, can only affect 1 spell) at level 5, 1/2 that of Dispel at level 10, 1/2 to equal that of Greater Dispel at level 15 (since if it's only on 1 spell you can then recast it, compensating for the half chance of success), and 1/2 to equal that of Quickened Greater Dispel at level 20.

Replenishing spell slots and temporarily retaining spells absorbed as spells known is VERY much direct combat power as well as some strategic power (otherwise known as vertical and horizontal power respectively). The more spell slots and actions you give the Sorcerer the more vertical power they obtain. The more spells known you give them (coupled with spontaneous casting) the more horizontal power they gain.


Wait, how is the ability to imitate a 3rd level spell with 25% success chance such a big advantage?

1) It's at-will, that's a rather big advantage. 2) It can replenish spell slots and temporarily add to your spells known. These advantages combine so as to be pretty fantastically incredible.


Why? As a sorcerer, he's got quite a number of spell slots anyway, and because they're so temporary he can't build up a large repetoire of spells he can cast (if he works hard, he might be able to match the wizard at his best moments.)

1) The more spell slots he gains the closer his universe-shattering spellcasting comes to being at-will. 2) The more spells he has known, however temporary they might be, the more ways he has to effectively shatter the universe at any given time.


That said, a consolidated list does make sense. Would you advise just links in my sig (the current plan), or a separate thread with links, or a thread with all the stuff? (I still wouldn't want to make all the stuff in one thread, as that will just get too big to critique.)

Links in the sig are not enough. If you want all of your material to be considered together you need all of it put together in a single thread. Seriously. I have a separate Homebrewer's Signature with lots of different links to lots of different projects. The difference between my homebrew and yours is that not one of my projects needs any of the others to be critiqued properly, while this Sorcerer boost of yours, your Wizard fix, and probably other things I'm unaware of, need to all be viewed entirely before critique on any one part can be relevant. My suggestion is do both. Have separate threads that are well-organized and clearly presented, but also have a single master thread with your design goals plastered all over the place, notes on your intentions and desired balance smattered all about, and spoilered sections that divide and organize everything into clean compartments (wherein information is well-organized and clearly presented in it's own right). Organization is key.

Yitzi
2011-09-13, 02:20 PM
Replenishing spell slots and temporarily retaining spells absorbed as spells known is VERY much direct combat power as well as some strategic power (otherwise known as vertical and horizontal power respectively). The more spell slots and actions you give the Sorcerer the more vertical power they obtain. The more spells known you give them (coupled with spontaneous casting) the more horizontal power they gain.

That's why I made both very limited in how well they can last. Still, some reduction is definitely advisable...I think I'll make it give a spell slot of 1 level lower (so at equivalent-level he's not getting a top-level spell), and limit it to one bonus spell per level.


1) It's at-will, that's a rather big advantage.

True, but on the flip side it still takes up a standard action (at least before level 20). Still, it probably does need a bit of a reduce, but I don't want it to be x/day ...I think the best way is to make it once every 1d4 rounds, like most breath weapons. Then the level 20 ability boosts it to at-will rather than as an immediate action.


1) The more spell slots he gains the closer his universe-shattering spellcasting comes to being at-will.

Firstly, this is not meant to go with the universe-shattering variety of sorcerer. And secondly, those spell slots come either from enemies (and in the highly likely situation he fails to draw magic, the spell he tried to draw will likely harm him), or from allies (thereby reducing their spellcasting capability.)


2) The more spells he has known, however temporary they might be, the more ways he has to effectively shatter the universe at any given time.

In other words, he becomes more like a wizard?

The whole point is to make the sorcerer more wizard-like in power, because that means I don't have to worry about making the sorcerer too weak when the wizard gets nerfed.


Links in the sig are not enough. If you want all of your material to be considered together you need all of it put together in a single thread. Seriously. I have a separate Homebrewer's Signature with lots of different links to lots of different projects. The difference between my homebrew and yours is that not one of my projects needs any of the others to be critiqued properly, while this Sorcerer boost of yours, your Wizard fix, and probably other things I'm unaware of, need to all be viewed entirely before critique on any one part can be relevant. My suggestion is do both. Have separate threads that are well-organized and clearly presented, but also have a single master thread with your design goals plastered all over the place, notes on your intentions and desired balance smattered all about, and spoilered sections that divide and organize everything into clean compartments (wherein information is well-organized and clearly presented in it's own right). Organization is key.

Ok, thanks for the suggestion. So that'll be the next project.