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boxfox
2015-06-04, 09:54 AM
Hello.

This domain was created in response to feedback presented on my homebrew Weaver class on these forums.
Here's a link to that thread. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?418687-The-Weaver-A-full-caster-class-with-a-predilection-toward-failure)

NOTE: I use Mystra as the chosen god(dess) of magic for this domain. Feel free to substitute any god(dess) of magic.



Magic Domain
Mystra, the goddess of magic receives your prayers and devotion in exchange for insight into the secrets of her domain.

MAGIC DOMAIN SPELLS
Unlike other gods, Mystra grants you access to two spells chosen from the Bard, Sorcerer, or Wizard spell lists at 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 9th level. The chosen spells must be of the maximum level that you can cast.

ARCANE KNACK
At 1st level, instead of learning three cleric cantrips, you learn two cleric cantrips and two cantrips of your choice from the bard, sorcerer, or wizard spell list. Additionally, you gain proficiency with the Arcana skill.
Additionally, whenever you gain a Cleric level, including 1st level, instead of learning all spells on your spellcasting list, you choose only four to learn. Mystra has granted you understanding of many types of magic, but no mortal can hope to learn them all.

PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Beginning at level one, you find that Mystra rewards the precise use of magic. Whenever you cast a spell of 1st level or higher, roll a d%. If the result is equal to or lower than the number of spell points used to cast that spell, your studious devotion to magic entices Mystra to reveal a new mystical secret. Choose one spell from the Cleric, Bard, Sorcerer, or Wizard class lists and add it to your list of known spells. This spell counts as a cleric spell for you. This ability can grant you a maximum of 2 additional spells learned each level.

CHANNEL DIVINITY: DIVINE RECOVERY
Calling upon the grace of Mystra allows you to regain some of your magical energy. Once per day when you finish a short rest, you can use your Channel Divinity ability to recover a small number of spell points, as shown in the Divine Recovery Values table below.
Divine Recovery Values


Level
Value
Level
Value
Level
Value
Level
Value
Level
Value


2nd
2
5th-6th
5
9th-10th
7
13th-14th
10
17th-18th
13


3rd-4th
3
7th-8th
6
11th-12th
9
15th-16th
11
19th-20th
15



ADDITIONAL MAGICAL SECRETS
At 6th level, your continued devotion to Mystra is rewarded with a burst of magical knowledge. You learn two spells of your choice from any class. A spell you choose must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Cleric table, or a cantrip. The chosen spells count as cleric spells for you.

POTENT SPELLCASTING
Starting at 8th level, you add your Wisdom modifier to the damage you deal with any cleric cantrip.

DIVINE MASTERY
At 17th level, Mystra rewards you with such mastery over one spell that you can cast it at will. Choose a single spell that you know of 1st or 2nd level. You can cast that spell at its lowest level without expending a spell slot when you have it prepared. If you want to cast the spell at a higher level, you must expend a spell slot as normal.
By spending 8 hours in prayer, you can exchange the chosen spell for a different spell following the same rules as above.


I feel that this domain is quite balanced and enjoyable. Below, Iíll explain what led me to this conclusion.

To begin, this homebrew domain is only a domain, not an entirely homebrewed class. Creating an entire class, while absolutely possible to do well, is often difficult to balance and explain in the D&D world.

For this domain, Iíve followed the standard convention for all domains listed in the PHB. Namely:
ē You are given 2 spells at character levels 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9
ē At 1st level, you gain several minor bonuses (bonus proficiencies, a bonus cantrip, etc.)
ē At 2nd level, you gain a new Channel Divinity ability. This should fit the domain theme well.
ē At 6th level, you gain some benefit.
ē At 8th level, you gain a damage boost. (Potent Spellcasting if spell-focused or Divine Strike if combat)
ē At 17th level, you gain a strong ability that should have lasting effects and fit the domain theme.

This domain is unique and enjoyable because it brings the feel of playing a wizard into a clericís casting and has several unique aspects. Here is the rundown on what sets this domain apart and how it works:
ē Instead of giving 2 set domain spells every level, Iíve left these slots open to the player. There are as many different bard/sorcerer/wizard archetypes out there as people who play the classes, and every one of those players has a few favorite spells. Rather than force an archetype on anyone, Iíve left it to the players, with the DMís acceptance, as always.

ē Arcane Knack is a typical 1st level domain ability. You gain a bonus cantrip and a bonus proficiency.

ē Practice Makes Perfect joins Arcane Knack at level 1. This unique ability drastically reduces the known spells of the cleric. In exchange, every spell you cast has a small chance to let you learn a new spell. There are 2 aspects to this ability: spells known, and learning new spells spontaneously.
o Spells known: You learn a few more than the full arcane casters do, because youíre still a divine caster. Your spells learned every level are still only cleric spells, so youíre not even getting bonus utility for this part of the ability. This part of it is a complete nerf; you take a roughly 75% drop in spells known at early-mid levels.
o Learning new spells spontaneously: This mechanic replaces the wizardís ability to learn spells via scrolls. It is a complete buff, but itís sporadic and limited to a small number learned each level.
o The end result is losing a lot of your divine diversity to gain a little arcane diversity.

ē Channel Divinity: Divine Recovery is the exact same ability available to druids and wizards, only converted into the spell point variant.

ē Additional Magical Secrets is just like a Lore Bardís ability and gained at the same level. It helps guarantee the domain gains a little spell diversity, just in case the player isnít lucky with Practice Makes Perfect.

ē Potent Spellcasting is the obvious pick, as this domain is magic-based.

ē Divine Mastery is very similar to Spell Mastery, the 18th level ability available to wizards. Because we needed to take it one level early to match the other domain abilities, Iíve limited it to only 1 spell, instead of 2.

Chronologist
2015-06-04, 01:17 PM
Alright, let's take a look.


MAGIC DOMAIN SPELLS
Unlike other gods, Mystra grants you access to two spells chosen from the Bard, Sorcerer, or Wizard spell lists at 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 9th level. The chosen spells must be of the maximum level that you can cast.

I personally prefer the idea of domains giving specific spells known. Since it's the Magic domain, why not take inspiration partially from the 3E Magic Domain and grant the following spells:

1st Level Spells: Detect Magic, Identify
2nd Level Spells: Magic Weapon, Nystul's Magic Aura
3rd Level Spells: Counterspell, Dispel Magic
4th Level Spells: Arcane Eye, Mordenkainen's Private Sanctum
5th Level Spells: Scrying, Teleportation Circle


ARCANE KNACK
At 1st level, instead of learning three cleric cantrips, you learn two cleric cantrips and two cantrips of your choice from the bard, sorcerer, or wizard spell list. Additionally, you gain proficiency with the Arcana skill.
Additionally, whenever you gain a Cleric level, including 1st level, instead of learning all spells on your spellcasting list, you choose only four to learn. Mystra has granted you understanding of many types of magic, but no mortal can hope to learn them all.

This looks fine to me, only having access to four Cleric spells per spell level is quite restrictive.


PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Beginning at level one, you find that Mystra rewards the precise use of magic. Whenever you cast a spell of 1st level or higher, roll a d%. If the result is equal to or lower than the number of spell points used to cast that spell, your studious devotion to magic entices Mystra to reveal a new mystical secret. Choose one spell from the Cleric, Bard, Sorcerer, or Wizard class lists and add it to your list of known spells. This spell counts as a cleric spell for you. This ability can grant you a maximum of 2 additional spells learned each level.

Why not instead give characters two additional bard, sorcerer, warlock, or wizard spells known at every even-numbered level (or one at every level)? Practice Makes Perfect really just forces the character to roll a d100 every time they cast a spell, and the chance of success is so low that it's not even worth it in my opinion.


CHANNEL DIVINITY: DIVINE RECOVERY
Calling upon the grace of Mystra allows you to regain some of your magical energy. Once per day when you finish a short rest, you can use your Channel Divinity ability to recover a small number of spell points, as shown in the Divine Recovery Values table below.
Divine Recovery Values


Level
Value
Level
Value
Level
Value
Level
Value
Level
Value


2nd
2
5th-6th
6
9th-10th
10
13th-14th
14
17th-18th
18


3rd-4th
4
7th-8th
8
11th-12th
12
15th-16th
16
19th-20th
20



Seems pretty strong to me. I mean, it's giving you quite a few spell slots at higher levels, whereas other uses of Channel Divinity don't scale nearly as well (if at all). You could also simplify the calculation by making it one spell point per class level.


ADDITIONAL MAGICAL SECRETS
At 6th level, your continued devotion to Mystra is rewarded with a burst of magical knowledge. You learn two spells of your choice from any class. A spell you choose must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Cleric table, or a cantrip. The chosen spells count as cleric spells for you.

I don't think you really need this if you're already going to be getting a bunch of non-Cleric spells. At the same time I don't really know what to replace it with.


POTENT SPELLCASTING
Starting at 8th level, you add your Wisdom modifier to the damage you deal with any cleric cantrip.

Does this apply to damage with non-Cleric cantrips gained though other class features, such as the Eldritch Blast cantrip?


DIVINE MASTERY
At 17th level, Mystra rewards you with such mastery over one spell that you can cast it at will. Choose a single spell that you know of 1st or 2nd level. You can cast that spell at its lowest level without expending a spell slot when you have it prepared. If you want to cast the spell at a higher level, you must expend a spell slot as normal.
By spending 8 hours in prayer, you can exchange the chosen spell for a different spell following the same rules as above.

I like it, very cool and handy to have without upsetting the game's balance. It essentially means infinite cure spells, if that's the spell you choose, but at 17th level monsters hit so hard it's only going to be useful between encounters.

Overall Thoughts: This is way better than the Weaver, and I would allow it in my games for sure. It could use some minor adjustments, mainly for common sense reasons, nothing too serious. Well done. :smallsmile:

boxfox
2015-06-04, 04:30 PM
Thanks, Chrono.

I messed up the math On Divine Recovery. I'll be fixing it tonight. It will reward the exact same number of slots as Arcane and Natural recoveries. I'm on my phone, so I'll pst again when I get home.

boxfox
2015-06-04, 07:39 PM
Okay. Time for some legit feedback on the feedback. ;)


Alright, let's take a look.

I personally prefer the idea of domains giving specific spells known. Since it's the Magic domain, why not take inspiration partially from the 3E Magic Domain and grant the following spells:

1st Level Spells: Detect Magic, Identify
2nd Level Spells: Magic Weapon, Nystul's Magic Aura
3rd Level Spells: Counterspell, Dispel Magic
4th Level Spells: Arcane Eye, Mordenkainen's Private Sanctum
5th Level Spells: Scrying, Teleportation Circle

I respect your preferences, but I wouldn't use that list for the same reason I never chose the old Magic domain. It makes me die inside a little. I'm sure they are all really useful...in fact, they really are...they're just also so boring that my eyes glaze over. For me, these are spells I would take because I have to...because it's expected by the party. They lack pizazz, flash, gusto...and they precisely illustrate the reason that I left the spell choices to the individual players.
That list would be enough to make me skip this Domain, no matter how good the rest of the abilities were. To others however, they are quintessential wizard spells.

My friend pointed out when he read the domain that this is easily the best spell list of any domain in 5e (because you get to pick them yourself). My response was that it dang well better be...this is the domain of MAGIC. ;)

I cannot make myself force others to cast the spells I want. If this is problematic, I suggest that DM's make the list themselves. Sorry :P



Why not instead give characters two additional bard, sorcerer, warlock, or wizard spells known at every even-numbered level (or one at every level)? Practice Makes Perfect really just forces the character to roll a d100 every time they cast a spell, and the chance of success is so low that it's not even worth it in my opinion.

Definitely no to Warlock inclusion. That was one of my rules when making the domain...just the 3 full arcane casters. Warlocks are just too different.
"Forcing" an extra die roll for every spell is not how I see it. With the way I set it up, every single spell is an unscratched lottery ticket, full of possibility. Every single time I think about casting a spell, it becomes exciting. Sure the chance is small, but that doesn't stop people from buying Powerball tickets every week...



Seems pretty strong to me. I mean, it's giving you quite a few spell slots at higher levels, whereas other uses of Channel Divinity don't scale nearly as well (if at all). You could also simplify the calculation by making it one spell point per class level.

Initially, I thought I miscalculated these numbers, based on what a friend told me. Upon further investigation, I've found that it's actually impossible to do. The original spells give you "a combined level that is equal to or less than half your level (rounded up)...", which doesn't translate into spell points on a '1 to 1' scale. At any rate, I've come up with something very darn close. At each level, the value goes up to whatever the cost is for the highest spell slot you know. The other abilities are very similar to this. I will be editing the original post with my new findings.



I don't think you really need this if you're already going to be getting a bunch of non-Cleric spells. At the same time I don't really know what to replace it with.

This ability wasn't an accident. Practice Makes Perfect doesn't just feed you spell after spell. This makes sure you get the variety, and even if your rolls have been generous, this ability is NOT limited to the 3 full arcane casters. Paladin, Ranger, and Warlock spell lists have some nice stuff, and at level 6, you'll get some 3rd level spells...the good stuff.



Does this apply to damage with non-Cleric cantrips gained though other class features, such as the Eldritch Blast cantrip?

Absolutely, because you don't have any non-Cleric cantrips. Every spell you learn is a cleric spell, just like when bards and other cleric domains give you access to non-class spells.
That said, you don't get access to Eldritch Blast. ;)



Overall Thoughts: This is way better than the Weaver, and I would allow it in my games for sure. It could use some minor adjustments, mainly for common sense reasons, nothing too serious. Well done. :smallsmile:
Thanks. :)

EDIT: Original post's "Divine Recovery Values" table has been updated.

Fizban
2015-06-05, 03:22 AM
PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Beginning at level one, you find that Mystra rewards the precise use of magic. Whenever you cast a spell of 1st level or higher, roll a d%. If the result is equal to or lower than the number of spell points used to cast that spell, your studious devotion to magic entices Mystra to reveal a new mystical secret. Choose one spell from the Cleric, Bard, Sorcerer, or Wizard class lists and add it to your list of known spells. This spell counts as a cleric spell for you. This ability can grant you a maximum of 2 additional spells learned each level.

o Learning new spells spontaneously: This mechanic replaces the wizardís ability to learn spells via scrolls. It is a complete buff, but itís sporadic and limited to a small number learned each level.

ē Additional Magical Secrets is just like a Lore Bardís ability and gained at the same level. It helps guarantee the domain gains a little spell diversity, just in case the player isnít lucky with Practice Makes Perfect.
This is somewhat more of an opinion, but one that 5e supports much more than previous editions: randomness should never have anything to do with character generation. 5e has point buy ability scores and flat hit point gains at each level in PHB as standard choices, and something as important as spells known should never be left to random chance. The only thing stopping you from gaining the maximum spells known is if the DM levels you up before you've rolled enough dice to get them, so the obvious fix is that if you level up then then you get them retroactively. This gives you a delay that can be reduced by chance but is never more than that.

With that spells known are: [4 cleric +2 theurge (delayed)]/level, +10 arcane, +2 theurge (3rd or lower). Clerics normally get the whole list +10 (with a few non-cleric), while Wizards get 2 per level. Lore Bards still have special access to Druid/Paladin/Ranger/Warlock only spells (er, higher levels anyway) and inspiration, and Wizards will have more arcane spells known at high levels (there is no guarantee of scrolls, but those would also give a boost) and their school stuff. Bards are still pretty sad though. Normally the only person with the Bard list is a Bard, with a pretty short spells known=spells prepared list, but this guy can learn and prepare more Bard spells than a Bard for most of the game.

I think the strongest bit is getting to choose your domain's bonus spells that are always prepared. Wizards don't get any bonus prepared slots while Clerics and Druids are stuck with a specific list that almost certainly includes spells they don't care about (as mentioned above, Bards lose on spells "prepared" as well). It also has more hit points and armor than Wizard or Sorcerer, but no metamagic or school specializations. Still probably fine overall, you've done a decent job shuffling Cleric versatility into theurge versatility, and using the Cleric base means it's a bit tougher but lacks the raw power or combo potential of the arcane classes. I want to say that this is stronger than any domain because of the choice, but I wouldn't actually take it because I'd be loathe to lose having the whole Cleric list innately, so by that I figure it's not overpowered. You might consider how this interacts with other options though: the Unearthed Arcana articles include a Favored Soul variant that allows a Sorcerer to take a Cleric domain, for example, and I think is being taken as a given by many people (the article notes that these options are not official and should be more like playtest suggestions, but the adventure supplements are if anything less balanced and WotC never follows their own rules and most people use any sort of article as RAW or at least they used to.)

Aside from that, I think you could go even simpler. The DMG tries to suggest that all spells are about equal so that messing with class lists is okay. While this is obviously not always the case (particularly regarding the Warlock, who's list is both hamstrung and also includes Warlock-only spells that are clearly more powerful, but also with other hard to find exclusive spells like Destructive Wave), it is mostly true. As long as you're using a proper spells known spontaneous caster base (Bard/Sorcerer/etc), you could assume a "variant class spell list" for any given character and just let them pick whatever spells they want since their limited known list cannot approach the size of the "variant list" you would write. To make it more official, make a Bard or Sorcerer path that allows access to any spell in exchange for having a little less than the other paths, with maybe some fluff or roleplaying restriction for those outside the norm like "must have seen the spell cast." I think this version results in even less boat-rocking.

boxfox
2015-06-05, 11:03 AM
This is somewhat more of an opinion, but one that 5e supports much more than previous editions: randomness should never have anything to do with character generation. 5e has point buy ability scores and flat hit point gains at each level in PHB as standard choices, and something as important as spells known should never be left to random chance.

D&D has always had randomness in character generation. I rolled my stats, my hit dice (after level 1), my starting gold, and you can even roll your background traits, essentially randomizing your character's very personality. It's a game of dice. The options to not roll things are for people who do not want to think about it or chance a low roll.



The only thing stopping you from gaining the maximum spells known is if the DM levels you up before you've rolled enough dice to get them, so the obvious fix is that if you level up then then you get them retroactively. This gives you a delay that can be reduced by chance but is never more than that.

While DM's are, of course, allowed to rule however they please on everything in the game, there is no "obvious fix" for this mechanic. You do not get the spells retroactively. Practice Makes Perfect replaces the ability to learn spells from scrolls that wizards have, only not as potently. While learning them is free, they are not guaranteed at all. If you level before acquiring them, the chance is lost to you forever, as designed. You are also limited to only 2 extra spells per level, whereas a wizard can literally learn his entire list every level with enough time and money.



With that spells known are: [4 cleric +2 theurge (delayed)]/level, +10 arcane, +2 theurge (3rd or lower). Clerics normally get the whole list +10 (with a few non-cleric), while Wizards get 2 per level. Lore Bards still have special access to Druid/Paladin/Ranger/Warlock only spells (er, higher levels anyway) and inspiration, and Wizards will have more arcane spells known at high levels (there is no guarantee of scrolls, but those would also give a boost) and their school stuff. Bards are still pretty sad though. Normally the only person with the Bard list is a Bard, with a pretty short spells known=spells prepared list, but this guy can learn and prepare more Bard spells than a Bard for most of the game.

There are exactly 4 Bard-only spells in the game, and each one of them can be replicated by other classes using different spells or game mechanics, I believe. I don't think that's an issue at all.
Class comparisons are fine, also, but the only comparison that is really valid is comparing the domain to other cleric domains, as they are the direct competitors.



I think the strongest bit is getting to choose your domain's bonus spells that are always prepared.

It should be strong, as this is the domain of Magic. That said, DM's can always limit the selection to suit them and their campaigns.



You might consider how this interacts with other options though: the Unearthed Arcana articles include a Favored Soul variant that allows a Sorcerer to take a Cleric domain, for example, and I think is being taken as a given by many people (the article notes that these options are not official and should be more like playtest suggestions, but the adventure supplements are if anything less balanced and WotC never follows their own rules and most people use any sort of article as RAW or at least they used to.)

As these things aren't Core, they've not been considered. As with anything outside of Core, DM's should vet everything in them before presenting them to their players as options.



Aside from that, I think you could go even simpler. The DMG tries to suggest that all spells are about equal so that messing with class lists is okay. While this is obviously not always the case (particularly regarding the Warlock, who's list is both hamstrung and also includes Warlock-only spells that are clearly more powerful, but also with other hard to find exclusive spells like Destructive Wave), it is mostly true. As long as you're using a proper spells known spontaneous caster base (Bard/Sorcerer/etc), you could assume a "variant class spell list" for any given character and just let them pick whatever spells they want since their limited known list cannot approach the size of the "variant list" you would write. To make it more official, make a Bard or Sorcerer path that allows access to any spell in exchange for having a little less than the other paths, with maybe some fluff or roleplaying restriction for those outside the norm like "must have seen the spell cast." I think this version results in even less boat-rocking.
These ideas suffer from several problems, but the biggest is that you appear to be suggesting that I just play a different class and then customize their spell list to be whatever I want...something that has nothing to do with the power level of a homebrew cleric domain, and is vastly less "simple" than what I've offered to the Playground above.


Based on all feedback, the most common gripe about the class so far seems to be that I've left the spell list up in the air for players and DMs to decide on. If the most broken thing about this domain is that it forces a DM to accept or deny the presence of 10 different spells in their campaigns, I'll take that as a compliment and consider the homebrew a success.

Thanks for the feedback everyone.

Fizban
2015-06-06, 03:08 AM
If I start sounding a bit pompous below, well I feel you're being pretty dismissive of the opinions you asked for and it's ruffled my feathers :smallannoyed:

D&D has always had randomness in character generation. I rolled my stats, my hit dice (after level 1), my starting gold, and you can even roll your background traits, essentially randomizing your character's very personality. It's a game of dice. The options to not roll things are for people who do not want to think about it or chance a low roll.
Precedent does not make something balanced. Rolling for stats and hp is and has always been quite literally unfair and there's no arguing out of it. Forcing someone to choose between playing possibly the entire game with a handicap or suicide characters until they get a good roll? Rolling for stats comes from the ancient roots of a wargame where characters didn't matter and bringing multiple sheets because you expected to die was a thing, it has no place in a heroic fantasy setting where you're expected to be invested in roleplaying your character.

While DM's are, of course, allowed to rule however they please on everything in the game, there is no "obvious fix" for this mechanic. You do not get the spells retroactively. Practice Makes Perfect replaces the ability to learn spells from scrolls that wizards have, only not as potently. While learning them is free, they are not guaranteed at all. If you level before acquiring them, the chance is lost to you forever, as designed. You are also limited to only 2 extra spells per level, whereas a wizard can literally learn his entire list every level with enough time and money.
What you mean to say is that the mechanic is not broken, which I obviously disagree with. This ability cannot be compared to learning from scrolls and spellbooks because those are controlled entirely by the DM (or at most a random loot table with far lower odds of generating a scroll than this [pretty sure, haven't run the math yet]), while this is activated on player initiative. It forces bad choices just like forced rolling of stats, encouraging players to refuse adventuring in order to grind spells known (note that encouraging does not mean they will actually do so, but they will be aware of it). And just how is a wizard buying scrolls when 5e does not allow you to buy any magic items except 50gp healing potions?

There are exactly 4 Bard-only spells in the game, and each one of them can be replicated by other classes using different spells or game mechanics, I believe. I don't think that's an issue at all.
Class comparisons are fine, also, but the only comparison that is really valid is comparing the domain to other cleric domains, as they are the direct competitors.
It should be strong, as this is the domain of Magic. That said, DM's can always limit the selection to suit them and their campaigns.
I didn't say Bard-only, I said Bard list, meaning the combination of spells that makes the Bard different from "generic caster with inspiration", and yes all comparisons are valid. If you make a class variant that potentially steps on a different class, the original class has a right to complain about it. Always be sure to check your tunnel vision when homebrewing. Justifying things by saying "it's supposed to be strong" is exactly how to break it.

These ideas suffer from several problems, but the biggest is that you appear to be suggesting that I just play a different class and then customize their spell list to be whatever I want...something that has nothing to do with the power level of a homebrew cleric domain, and is vastly less "simple" than what I've offered to the Playground above.
At the end of the last thread you said that you'd started with the desire to have a class with access to both arcane and divine spells (or more accurately, the bard+cleric+wizard lists). That's a simple goal and I like to think people enjoy simple answers. Allowing a Sorcerer to pick any spell instead of using the restricted Sorcerer list is so simple it only takes that sentence. Most people assume that would break the game so I tried to explain why not. I would be interested to know what "several problems" my ideas suffer, since I consider myself quite well versed in evaluating dnd systems, especially with 5e being new and thus far shorter and easier to understand/master than 3.5. I never said a Domain was a bad idea, just that if ignoring class spell lists is your goal then there's a simpler solution.

Based on all feedback, the most common gripe about the class so far seems to be that I've left the spell list up in the air for players and DMs to decide on. If the most broken thing about this domain is that it forces a DM to accept or deny the presence of 10 different spells in their campaigns, I'll take that as a compliment and consider the homebrew a success.
I don't quite understand what you mean by, "accept or deny the presence of 10 different spells." It seems obvious to me that the DM has no choice in what spells you pick for your Domain list (any more than what levels you take etc), and the fact that no other Domains or Circles give you that choice is very significant. I believe this is mitigated by limiting your Cleric spells known, but I'd like to see other evaluations. You've only had two responses: Chonologist and myself have both expressed concern over the Domain list and the percentile mechanic of Practice Makes Perfect. If you're only going to wait for two responses and then ignore them, well I expect other readers would be dissuaded from commenting themselves.*

*Don't take that as a suggestion, I really would like to see what someone else thinks of the mechanics in question :smallbiggrin:

boxfox
2015-06-06, 12:51 PM
If I start sounding a bit pompous below, well I feel you're being pretty dismissive of the opinions you asked for and it's ruffled my feathers :smallannoyed:
Just to preface my response, I specifically stated in my post that I was NOT trying to shoot down everything you said.
EDIT: The web client crashed during my last post, and apparently I did not write that particular bit in when I rewrote the entire thing. Apologies.
I just didn't agree with most of it and stated why in my responses. I also attempted to encourage people to view several things from a different perspective, instead of just saying "no."



Precedent does not make something balanced. Rolling for stats and hp is and has always been quite literally unfair and there's no arguing out of it. Forcing someone to choose between playing possibly the entire game with a handicap or suicide characters until they get a good roll? Rolling for stats comes from the ancient roots of a wargame where characters didn't matter and bringing multiple sheets because you expected to die was a thing, it has no place in a heroic fantasy setting where you're expected to be invested in roleplaying your character.
I will reiterate that this domain in no way forces players to gimp themselves. It is an optional domain that will appeal to some, and not to others. That's okay.

I copied this text directly from the PHB: "You generate your character's six ability scores randomly. Roll four 6-sided dice and record the total of the highest three dice on a piece o f scratch paper. Do this five more times, so that you have six numbers. If you want to save time or donít like the idea o f randomly determining ability scores, you can use the following scores instead: 15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8."
Emphasis mine. I just wanted to point out that the random rolls, which have been standard since the game's inception, are still standard. The last sentence in there is an optional choice people can make if they are of the same opinion as you.

I can tell that the random rolling bothers you. That's okay, and I'm sure lots of people agree with you. The great thing about home-brewing things, however, is that each and every one of us (no matter how closely we stick to the books) is making this stuff up, which means if you don't like it, change it.

If the spell list and random spell chance are the two things that make you dislike this domain, I urge you to consider some of the changes that you've listed and play the domain your way. Enjoy it. Make it yours. Any copywrite infringement is null and void. Have fun...otherwise try something else and have fun with that.


Justifying things by saying "it's supposed to be strong" is exactly how to break it.
I'm afraid I didn't clarify my choice of words. This domain is meant to have the best selection of spells. That's intentional. My feeling is that the Domain of Magic should have the best magic. And I feel it does, because "best" is relative, and the fact that you pick your favorites means everyone gets the best for them.



At the end of the last thread you said that you'd started with the desire to have a class with access to both arcane and divine spells (or more accurately, the bard+cleric+wizard lists). That's a simple goal and I like to think people enjoy simple answers. Allowing a Sorcerer to pick any spell instead of using the restricted Sorcerer list is so simple it only takes that sentence. Most people assume that would break the game so I tried to explain why not. I would be interested to know what "several problems" my ideas suffer, since I consider myself quite well versed in evaluating dnd systems, especially with 5e being new and thus far shorter and easier to understand/master than 3.5. I never said a Domain was a bad idea, just that if ignoring class spell lists is your goal then there's a simpler solution.

Quite honestly, I just couldn't understand what you were trying to say, even after reading it several times. This paragraph clarifies it a great deal, and I think it's a great idea. It really is a simple thing to do.



I don't quite understand what you mean by, "accept or deny the presence of 10 different spells." It seems obvious to me that the DM has no choice in what spells you pick for your Domain list (any more than what levels you take etc), and the fact that no other Domains or Circles give you that choice is very significant. I believe this is mitigated by limiting your Cleric spells known, but I'd like to see other evaluations.
If a player approaches a DM and asks to play with the Magic Domain, and the DM sees that domain spells are up in the air, I would expect the DM to have final say over the full spell list chosen by the player before the game even starts. That is how any homebrew thing should be treated. Additionally, the DM can just say "No".



You've only had two responses: Chonologist and myself have both expressed concern over the Domain list and the percentile mechanic of Practice Makes Perfect. If you're only going to wait for two responses and then ignore them, well I expect other readers would be dissuaded from commenting themselves.*

*Don't take that as a suggestion, I really would like to see what someone else thinks of the mechanics in question :smallbiggrin:
Your mistake is assuming that this forum is the only area in the world where my ideas are being discussed. I speak about these things with the other players in my group and my DM.

I did not ignore a single post. I read each and gave thought to every word, the same way I always do with feedback, because it is very important to me. It is quite possibly the single most important part of making any game or game supplement. The fact that the evaluation ended without me changing my mind is in no way a negative thing. Likewise, it does not mean that your ideas were bad, only that I felt more strongly about mine for reasons I've already posted.

Thanks again.

Fizban
2015-06-07, 07:50 AM
If the flow's a bit weird, it's because the part about domain choices got moved around and expanded but left in quote order, my main points are that stat rolls are bad and we disagree on how to present homebrew for critique, with a side of why a new option is the only option and "hey you never responded to my point about scrolls!" And then it ballooned some more.

I just wanted to point out that the random rolls, which have been standard since the game's inception, are still standard. The last sentence in there is an optional choice people can make if they are of the same opinion as you.
On the contrary, 4e used a set array as the "standard", or more accurately as the first option. 5e was designed to evoke old editions and bring players back, many of whom are quite attached to random ability scores, but the elite array is right there. I think it should also be noted that both the 4e and 5e organized play rules (for conventions and such) prohibit random stat generation. I feel it is extremely important to correct the idea that random character generation is fair: it is not my opinion, it is a fact that penalizing a player for the results of one unlucky roll for an extended period of game time is unfair, and random stat generation is the number one cause*. WotC recognizes this and for the last two editions has put non-random generation in the PHB for that very reason. The only opinion involved is that I recognize many players seem to think this gambling is integral to enjoyment of the game, which is quite an opinion.

*How long is too long depends on the person but generally starts at one fight's worth since other game rolls usually stop mattering after a fight, or maybe a rest. Ability scores last until you die, from a session to a whole campaign lasting months.

I will reiterate that this domain in no way forces players to gimp themselves. It is an optional domain that will appeal to some, and not to others.
I'll give you that as a domain choice, there is no more forced random generation here than there is at ability scores. It does not damage the rest of the game. However, it still doesn't fit in: I have never heard of any class that gained spells known or anything permanent other than ability scores/hp based on randomness. Furthermore, it is not truly optional, as players often choose what they want to play before anything else. If someone wants to play a theurge and the only option is this domain (not counting multiclassing here, it sucks), then for this player the domain is no longer an option. It is the only option, and they are now forced into random character generation. There are multiple options for arcane, divine, and martial characters (or pyros, axe-crazies, mind-controllers, and archers) but only one option for arcane+divine characters. With multiple options for theurge characters I would cede this point entirely, though I maintain that random generation is a poor idea and doubt that this method compares at all to scroll/spellbook acquisition.

If the spell list and random spell chance are the two things that make you dislike this domain, I urge you to consider some of the changes that you've listed and play the domain your way. Enjoy it. Make it yours. Any copywrite infringement is null and void. Have fun...otherwise try something else and have fun with that.
I think this is actually the root of our disagreement: with no special preface, what I see in this thread is a fully written and formatted cleric domain meant to be useable as written alongside printed materials, and thus implicitly asking to be evaluated as such. If every line needs a *subject to DM approval* tag then it's not a finished homebrew, it's just a suggestion. For a quick idea that's asking, "will this break my game?", I can answer in a single sentence (I usually use more but it's possible). For a fully written and formatted class option, I will respond in kind. If you expect DMs to finish the homebrew suggestion by modifying it for their own games and just want another voice or two in addition to those of your playgroup (which we have not heard here), then I would ask that you say so at the top of the thread.

If a player approaches a DM and asks to play with the Magic Domain, and the DM sees that domain spells are up in the air, I would expect the DM to have final say over the full spell list chosen by the player before the game even starts. That is how any homebrew thing should be treated. Additionally, the DM can just say "No".
As I said above, the level of detail and formatting implies that this is meant to be useable as written just like any PHB domain. The goal of a balanced homebrew is that the DM can simply allow it without having to edit, the same as they would allow a printed sourcebook (if they deny it then the content doesn't matter anymore). Once allowed, the player should not have to ask permission to use it, nor should the DM have to check it, unless the ability in question specifically says so. Since the ability in question does not, the DM should neither have to authorize nor be allowed to deny the player's chosen domain list at any point.

I would urge you to reconsider that position when it comes to homebrewing: GitP has a history of char-op and homebrew projects which require a sterile reading of the rules for any sort of meaningful community discussion (as do most other forums I'd imagine). Alternatively, give some context: if you start out by saying, "This might take some tweaking based on DM taste, but I want to know if it's generally useable and won't break my game," or, "I assume that DMs modify homebrew as needed and this is just a starting point," everyone will know what the plan is. You get the feedback you ask for and people will respond differently if you don't specify, in this case you get a grognard running a completely different show.

Your mistake is assuming that this forum is the only area in the world where my ideas are being discussed. I speak about these things with the other players in my group and my DM.
We in the thread have no knowledge of what your playgroup talks about. You could be trying to get something worked out before showing it to the DM, you could be the DM seeking impartial evaluation, you could be 'brewing for the fun of it, it doesn't matter. I made no mistake there, and it sounds like the plurality was just from confusion. I'm glad we agree that simple things are simple, heh.

The fact that the evaluation ended without me changing my mind is in no way a negative thing. Likewise, it does not mean that your ideas were bad, only that I felt more strongly about mine for reasons I've already posted.
This is difficult to respond to. I don't understand what "reasons" you have given. You have yet to respond regarding the fact that PMP encourages bad/discourages good player behavior, nor given any reason it can be compared to spellbooks other than your assumption it is weaker with no statistical evidence (post #6, 2nd block). Everything else is layers of DM says and yay random boo random, which I think I've reached the bottom of here. You dismissed my biggest point of contention, the fixing of which I deemed necessary, and did so with an unproven assumption. If you had acknowledged a possibility of problems but chosen to go ahead anyway, that would be different, but your second response made no mention of it whatsoever, so it does not seem to me like it was considered carefully. I can't really fault you for focusing on the randomness argument since you clearly like randomness, but that's kinda the problem: assuming that excessively random mechanics will just work out is not good game design. If you wish to play with those mechanics and accept the consequences you may do so, but not even acknowledging that makes it seem like I'm wasting my time. I think that's about all I have to say (unless you want to bandy some math for PMP), but I will check back for your response and acknowledge it if needed. It has been enjoyable enough but I think I've spent far too much time on this by now.

boxfox
2015-06-07, 06:05 PM
Thanks for your thoughts.