View Full Version : [variant] blood mage (variant sorc)

2006-11-28, 06:37 PM
it all started here http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1610721#post1610721 where the OP wanted to create a sorcerer without material components. i came up with the idea that the sorcerer becomes what is known as a blood mage. here goes nothing...

blood mage
everyone knows that magic is in the blood, you either have it or you don't. some who do have it take up the path of wizardry, studying to learn how to cast darts of magic, others take up the path of sorcery, claiming to have the blood of dragons. the path of the sorcerer has many subpaths, this is just one of them.

blood mages are exactly the same as sorcerers, but with a few differences.
they lose the ability to summon a familiar, yet gain a power called blood magic. blood magic works like normal magic, but with one difference, the material components as we know them do not exist. instead, the blood mage uses the blood of creatures in order to work their magic. for example, a sixth level blood mage uses the blood of a displacer beast instead of the leather loop to cast displacement.
wish requires the blood of either a pit feind or a efreeti, even though it normally has no material components. the XP cost is 3500 rather than 5000 for wish.

Alignment: blood mages can be of any alignment, but because they use blood for their magics, they are seen as evil.

hitpoints per level: D4

give me your suggestions, nitpicks and rebukes

2006-11-28, 06:40 PM
I admit, I might have inspired the wish with material component part.

Who knew he'd go this far?

2006-11-28, 06:44 PM
she? I'm a guy! i just like to have a female avatar. *goes to options to clear this up*

2006-11-29, 06:03 PM
I am compiling a list of blood components at the moment. heres what i have at the moment.
acid arrow = snake blood
acid fog = horse blood mixed with a pinch of crushed peas
alter self* = doppelganger blood
animate dead = the congealed blood of a zombie mixed with crushed black onyx gems
antimagic field = the fluid needed to animate an iron golem, taken from an iron golem
antipathy = fermented grape blood that has gone off
arcane eye = bat blood
arcane lock = your blood mixed with 25 gp worth of gold dust
astral projection = ectoplasm
binding = blood of a creature that prefers grappling
black tentacles = blood of an octopus
blink* = blood of a blink dog
bulls strength = blood of a bull
bulls strength, mass = blood of a celestial bull
cats grace = blood of a cat
cats grace, mass = blood of a catgirl
circle of death = blood shed by the victims of a zombie pirate raid (or the blood of a zombie pirate)
clone = your own blood, as well as the lab supplies
colour spray = blood from 3 willing people, all of which must be different colours
command undead = cows blood and a splinter of bone
comprehend languages = blood of someone who speaks a different language to the caster
confusion = the blood of a gibbering fool
contingincy = blood of the spell to be set off and blood of a spellcasting creature
continual flame = blood from a red creature and ruby dust worth 45 gp
control undead = blood of a necromancer, taken forcefully
control water = water taken from a water elemental (regardless of the version of the spell)
create undead = blood of the creature you want mized with grave dirt, brackish water and ground up onyx gems worth 50 gp per HD of the monster you wish to create
create undead, greater = your own blood, blood of the monster you want, grave dirt stolen from the tomb of a noble, brackish water taken from a water elemental, ground up onyx gems worth 50 gp per HD of the monster
crushing despair = blood of a small girl mixed with her own tears, given willingly
crushing hand = the blood of a newly hatched bird
darkness = bat and drow blood
darkvision = blood taken from a human while in darkness
daze = sheeps blood
wish* = blood or other vital fluid from a pit fiend or efreeti. the XP required is only 3500, due to the difficulty of obtaining the vital fluids

* does not have a material component normally, yet the blood required seemed appropiate

suggest more blood components. just one thing, if the material component would normally cost more than 1gp, it must be included and then reduced (like I did with wish)

2006-11-30, 02:54 AM
does this allow the sorcerer to cast the spells without having them 'known'? if not i'd almost say this is a very large nerf to sorcerer, even though it adds great taste.
bulls strength-blood of a celestial bull ----how would a lvl 4 sorcerer obtain this

2006-11-30, 05:42 PM
you have misquoted the spell. the celestial bull blood is for bulls strength, MASS. the blood part is treated lioke a potion, but the sorc is able to cast the spell as soon as they drink the blood. now all i need is some blood of a creature that casts magic missile, give my blood mage about 50 of these bloods and they are a machine gun on the battlefield. any suggestions for blood for the following spells;
magic missile
mordies D-bomb

i'm surprised that no one has complained about the blood component for cats grace, mass.

2006-11-30, 05:47 PM
A sorcerer can get a lot of that by simply using scientific arguments about D&D.

It isn't a balancing factor at all.

2006-11-30, 06:01 PM
the problem with the blood thing is that some of the fluids are harder to get (you try getting ichor from a pit fiend!) than others (bulls blood is so easy to get, just go to a slaughterhouse)

can someone PLEASE complain about some of the bloods needed, i can point you to two of them. mass cats grace and crushing despair. complain NOW!

2006-11-30, 06:09 PM
Insert Generic Complaint About The Use Of Variant Material Components Here.


There. Satisfied, Saline?

2006-11-30, 06:18 PM
just tell me if i got this right, is this just the replacement for the spell component? or is it the equivalent of a scroll, where you can use it to cast the spell, thus removing the spells/day as long as you have the required blood?
magic missile-wil'o wisp, rakshasha, ice mephit, naga, night hag,formian queen, drider
... none really for a 1st level wizard but thats all of em from the monsterous manual (yay for ctrl+f)

2006-11-30, 06:49 PM
it depends on how far you want to take it. if you wanted them to be just the material components then you could do that. if you wanted them to be like scrolls, then the sorc does not learn spells normally and has to spend money on getting a blood component pouch instead (giving them the 0 and 1st level bloods). they still have to meet spellcasting requirements (stops the rich 1st level blood mage from buying pit fiend blood to cast wish) and pays XP costs if the spell requires it. the spells on the list are ones that normally require material components. the blood mage gets a new class skill called knowledge (anatomy) that explains how they know where the blood streams of a monster are

oh and khantalas, i'm not happy with your complaint. mass cats grace uses the blood of a CATGIRL. there are no known catgirls in DnD. crushing despair uses the blood and tears of a little girl, given willingly. no little girl is going to bleed and cry willingly, forcing the girl to cry negates the magic of the component.

2006-11-30, 06:58 PM
For magic missile maybe the blood of a phase wasp (MM2).

I like the concept. However, balance could be problematic if casting is limited only by the available blood.
Maybe spells per day should be kept, but instead of memorizing, casting spontaneously, or even learning spells, the blood mage casts only by using blood.

2006-11-30, 10:32 PM
i think thats what i wanted to say. i'm guessing that a phase wasp has magic missile as a SLA?

2006-12-01, 12:15 AM
Although the using of blood in spells is really cool flavour, having to acquire and carry around so many vials of so many different kinds of blood just seems like a horrible inconvenience.

I don't know, it just struck me that way; it may well not be at all. ^^;

2006-12-02, 03:53 AM
shazzbaa, it isn't more inconveniant to the blood mage to carry their bloods than for a normal sorc to carry around enough bat guano and sulphur to constantly cast fireball. you could assume that the blood mage, once it gets bloods, has enough blood from a monster to cast that spell untill next level, when the blood mage goes to the local magery store and buys enough blood for that spell untill he or she comes back to the mage store

2006-12-03, 06:17 PM
Hmm...so, instead of carrying material components, they carry around vials? What if their vials are confiscated? No, I think it would be better if they used their own blood. Mechanics could be difficult though.

2006-12-04, 01:53 AM
In that case, forgive me for being rather dense here, but is there a real difference? This isn't a caster without a material component; rather, it is a caster with a slightly niftier material component.

2006-12-04, 03:40 AM
McDeath: the bloods are subject to the same rules as normal components are. if the bloods are confiscated, the blood mage can only cast spells without material components. alter self and wish, although having a blood component, do not require the bloods, they were just given bloods because i though they seemed good

shazzbaa; the blood mage is but the first step for explaining what exactly the adventurers do with the bodies of monsters. if they faced snakes, the blood mage would kill the serpents and harvest the venom and the blood of the snake. the rouge would get the skin and make some snakeskin boots, just because it look better than leather boots. if you look at the normal material component for displacement, that explains what the party does with displacer hides

Mauril Everleaf
2006-12-04, 12:47 PM
so i assume that your local mage shop is going to carry all of the exotic bloods listed above. and whats that bit about the blood lasting until the next level?
you could assume that the blood mage, once it gets bloods, has enough blood from a monster to cast that spell untill next level, when the blood mage goes to the local magery store and buys enough blood for that spell untill he or she comes back to the mage store wouldnt this mean that each creature effectively has infinite blood? and once the caster can cast 9th level spells, since he has no per day limit as long as he has blood, he would never have a real reason to go past that level? i mean his spell-blood would become infinite bc he never levels, and he can cast as many wishes as he wants to give him all the extra HP, feats, or bonus experience points he wants. Heck he could gate in a solar who could cast all the infallible wishes he wants for no experience drain. seems kinda broken to me, but maybe i missed something.

2006-12-04, 03:20 PM
Some thoughts....
First, this is interesting. Makes me wonder if the world is ready for a Ureamancer (Uromancer?). Probably not. ;)

I'd limit the number of blood bags such a caster could keep straight. Give 'em, say, 4 level 0 blood sources, a maximum of oh, I dunno, about 6 per level once they're leveled enough, something like that. (I think we all see where I'm going with this) I'd allow them to clean and re-fill a bag with new blood, ichor or whatever from a recent encounter too.

Of course, if such a sorc came across a member of the wrong Prestige class, he might just ruin their entire stock for spite, and pull a messy exit from their "wish" bag.

As to specifics:
Darkvision - should be dwarf or orc blood.
Cat's Grace - should be big cats, not housepets/familiars.
Cat's Grace, Mass - Rakshasa.

Ultimately though, this sort of thing strikes me as so much more work for the DM that there's no way I'd consider actually allowing it in my own campaigns except as a flavour exercise.

2006-12-04, 06:22 PM
how about limiting the amount of blood a monster gives depending on size? fine and smaller creatures give off 1/16 of the blood required to cast the spell tied to that blood, tiny 1/8th, small 1/4, medium 1, large 2X, huge 4X, gargantuan 8X and colossal 16X. spells per day still exist for the blood mage, they just work slightly differently. remember that you can tweak this as you like to make it fit

Mauril Everleaf
2006-12-04, 06:28 PM
i dont think thats accurate. if you assume that medium creatures are roughly human in size and approximate physiology (which most are, granted ther are exceptions, but roll with me) that means that one spell could cost as much as 5 pints of blood. thats a lot of blood. your average potion is maybe 1 pint. i would make that progression (if you decide to use it) a lot higher. maybe 1/4 for fine, 1/2 for tiny, 1 for small (this is gnome sized remember), 2 for medium, 4 for huge, etc. heck even bump it so that fine is 1/2. this will cut down on the mass genocide that would be produced from just trying to get spell components.

2006-12-04, 06:44 PM
the blood only lasts 1d4 weeks before losing its magic. no monster has infinite blood (unless its a blood elemental). instead of offering advice could some of you please make mechanics for this? i propose that monsters only give an amount of blood depending on their size, example, the tarrasque gives a lot more blood than a phase wasp.

if the spell has extra things (like XP and focii), they still apply. the reason wish had a lesser XP cost was the difficulty of getting the blood to cast it in the first place. in order to get pit fiend blood, you would need to travel to either the nine hells or the abyss in order to even have a chance of seeing one. then you have to kill the thing and harvest its ichor. then you have to make your way out of the nine hells or abyss or acheron (should a pit feind be in the blood war at the time) and then you can cast wish. don't get me started on gating in efreeti. gating in an efreeti to ask for a ring of infinitely quickened wishes would result in you getting the ring, but the next day, the efreeti gates YOU to the brass city to grant its wishes, using your new ring. solars would not answer the call of a gate created by a blood mage because everyone thinks that blood mages are evil, due to their harvesting of dead bodies fluids. the forces of Good do not like those who disrupt the dead or defile the dead.

tweak the class as you like, just post mechanics and not just suggestions

2006-12-04, 09:10 PM
Well, what I was thinking in terms of the limit per level was to effectively make it affect "spells known" or at least its analog. I'd limit spells known at any given level to be the same as a sorc of the same level, perhaps one fewer since they do have the facility (assuming you incorporate the characteristic) of switching up supply. Spells per day could be identical to a normal sorcerer and if you do give them 1 fewer (min 1) spell known (blood source useful for casting Spell X) at each level the ability to switch them out is fairly balanced and you can give them Haemopreservation notches at whatever level is fair. I dunno, you might want more or less class notches too.
Haemopreservation (class feature) (Su): Level 1 - A Blood Mage is able to keep her blood sources fresh and vital while stored in her bags, provided they were fresh to begin with. Blood in the care of a Blood Mage normally remains fresh for 1d4 weeks.
Level 5 (or wherever) - A Blood Mage's attunement to the blood sources he carries has been strengthened to the extent that he is able to extend its vitality (and his ability to use it to fuel spells) for twice as long as normal.
Level 15 (or thereabouts) - The Blood Mage's attunement to her blood sources has been refined so much that she is able to maintain her sources' vitality for much longer than normal. Sources for spells of level 5 or lower remain vital indefinitely, and sources for higher level spells remain vital for (1+cha modifier) times as long as normal. Oh, and so long as you have the right blood and have associated it (told the DM, written it down etc) you can use it until/unless it expires or you ditch it for something else (say, a 1-hour-per-spell-level process requiring 10 gp/casterlevel^2 in special cleansers)

Since you asked for mechanics suggestions rather than vague qualitative stuff. :P
Edit - Just to clarify, the reason I propose these is that I just don't see much of a class justification unless it's got some <ahem> flavour drawn from the whole blood-and-fluids thing. As an adjunct for a sorcerer with slightly less immediate flexibility and more long-term flexibility and with limited ingredient lifespans as an additional hedge, it seems a more differentiated class. Still labour-intensive though.

2006-12-04, 11:15 PM
So...it's more a flavour change, to make killing things have a point, than a mechanics change. I still like the idea of using their own blood.

Mauril Everleaf
2006-12-05, 11:19 AM
not to respond with hostility to unwarranted hostility, the reason that some of us post ideas, as opposed to direct gaming mechanics is due to the fact that this is YOUR creation, not ours, and as such feel that suggestions are more helpful than usurping your creative authority on your character class and telling you what you should do. So before you lash out against those that are trying to give constructive criticism, think that all of us could have just thought "well screw this guy with the female avatar, let him figure this crap out on his own".

2006-12-06, 08:22 PM
the problem with me is that i have many ideas, yet have no way of making them playable. my group meets very rarely, so i have nowhere to try out my ideas. I tend to be the person who listens to what others say, then take on board their suggestions. when i ask for suggesstions, i ask for people to give me their ideas on how i could make my ideas work. for now, the blood mage is just a sorc who takes the idea that "magic is in the blood" seroiusly. i will scrap the bloods = potions and the wish has less XP required. hells, why not just scrap the whole class for availability to PCs?

2006-12-07, 07:44 AM
Seeing as in the normal game one is assumed to have all non-valued material components available merely by the purchase of a spell-component pouch, this variant is either a flavour-only change, or a severe nerfing (in that the blood of a necromancer taken forcefully is less readily available than whatever material is automatically considered to be in your spell pouch).

In short, I like the flavour, but I think this only need to be a flavour, rather than a new class variant.

There's some really nice blood magic stuff in the 3.0 Oriental Adventure Supplement, by the way. It's horrible.

2006-12-07, 12:32 PM
Maybe because of the lack of availability of blood, the sorcerer may have some advantage.