PDA

View Full Version : [Concept] Theory-based magic



Neek
2008-02-06, 04:28 AM
[Be aware, this is still in the works. I am only presenting you the idea to see if it is viable or interesting]

The concept of a Wizard is an interesting one: He studies magical texts, and learns to apply those to the world he lives in. However, the structure of D&D only gives access to predefined effects; the inner-workings of spells are hardly brought up. He doesn't study Mordenkainen's Law or how he applies those to his spells, rather, he studies only them in application.

In contrast, I present the concept of the Theorist (I say concept because I don't have much on it yet). The Theorist does not cast magic, rather, he practices the understood theories of Arcana, and with that, applies magical effects. A Theorist is different from a mage in that:
* Gains his effects through a study of arcane concepts, rather than through bloodlines or application of obscurely based arcane tricks.
* Does not rely on Vancian spellcasting or schools of magic.
* Is able to craft magic items from this in a much more direct way (especially in terms of wondrous items).

Rather, the Theorist applies effects from effect pools, a set of effects that have a). a minimum Practitioner Level (akin to caster level, initiate level, &c) to apply, b). a class-specific skill check that is required to be rolled in order to apply an effect, and c). used per encounter, per day, or per week, dependent on the effect.

Hopefully, the end product will not be a nightmare.

It should be noted that this class is not to replace the Wizard or Sorcerer, but provides an original, alternate source for arcane spellcasters. The fluff I will provide will describe this class as being the product of Wizardry and Sorcery. I have no intention of devising a system in which divine effects are applied; Divine spells do not function under the same set of assumptions that arcane spells do, even if the crunch is identical.

I have sketched out the framework of the class here (http://wiki.penguindeskjob.com/Theorist_%28base_class%29#Class_Details) (I will translate it to BBCode later). Coming up soon are the frameworks of basic Theories.

To do:
* Create Theories.
* Fill in the class levels.
* Create a [COMPLETE COMMONER] class that grants the masses a much more limited application of the concept set forth.

Changelog
* February 6, 2008 - First post.

Bisected8
2008-02-06, 07:37 AM
I came up with a PrC a while ago which has a spellcasting mechanic similar to what you're getting at: The Linguamancer (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=49501)

Does that help?

Lady Tialait
2008-02-06, 08:32 AM
Holy moly...this is making my skin crawl if your doing what I thinkyour doing...crossing Wizard with ToB....then again...lower the power...give it per encounter..hmm...I need more info...Jonny Five is ALIVE!

Lakoda
2008-02-06, 09:15 AM
Hopefully I understand you intention correctly...


[Be aware, this is still in the works. I am only presenting you the idea to see if it is viable or interesting]

The concept of a Wizard is an interesting one: He studies magical texts, and learns to apply those to the world he lives in. However, the structure of D&D only gives access to predefined effects; the inner-workings of spells are hardly brought up. He doesn't study Mordenkainen's Law or how he applies those to his spells, rather, he studies only them in application.

Are you planning on basing the laws on existing spell lines? I think that would be cool. It could pose a problem fluff wise.


In contrast, I present the concept of the Theorist (I say concept because I don't have much on it yet). The Theorist does not cast magic, rather, he practices the understood theories of Arcana, and with that, applies magical effects. A Theorist is different from a mage in that:
* Gains his effects through a study of arcane concepts, rather than through bloodlines or application of obscurely based arcane tricks.
* Does not rely on Vancian spellcasting or schools of magic.
* Is able to craft magic items from this in a much more direct way (especially in terms of wondrous items).

Rather, the Theorist applies effects from effect pools, a set of effects that have a). a minimum Practitioner Level (akin to caster level, initiate level, &c) to apply, b). a class-specific skill check that is required to be rolled in order to apply an effect, and c). used per encounter, per day, or per week, dependent on the effect.

This seems like a spell seed sort of thing, where a caster applies different laws (makes the skill check) and out pops an affect. The major difference I see is with the fluff (which would be very cool). Instead of a fluffless seed you have some detailed in-game reason for how this law manifests the affect.


Hopefully, the end product will not be a
nightmare.

If my above assumptions are correct it should be to bad. The fluff will be the worst of it. The laws should come very easily.


It should be noted that this class is not to replace the Wizard or Sorcerer, but provides an original, alternate source for arcane spellcasters. The fluff I will provide will describe this class as being the product of Wizardry and Sorcery. I have no intention of devising a system in which divine effects are applied; Divine spells do not function under the same set of assumptions that arcane spells do, even if the crunch is identical.

I have sketched out the framework of the class here (http://wiki.penguindeskjob.com/Theorist_%28base_class%29#Class_Details) (I will translate it to BBCode later). Coming up soon are the frameworks of basic Theories.

I look forward to the theories. The class seems fine for a caster though I'm always weary of a caster class with empty levels (either they are underpowered or a PrC will come allong and provide +1 to existing caster levels just to fill them in).

Neek
2008-02-06, 12:30 PM
Are you planning on basing the laws on existing spell lines? I think that would be cool. It could pose a problem fluff wise.

Perhaps. Not all theories will be posed from the existing magic spell lines, but some will.


This seems like a spell seed sort of thing, where a caster applies different laws (makes the skill check) and out pops an affect. The major difference I see is with the fluff (which would be very cool). Instead of a fluffless seed you have some detailed in-game reason for how this law manifests the affect.

If my above assumptions are correct it should be to bad. The fluff will be the worst of it. The laws should come very easily.


It is similar to spell seeds, however it's not entirely. Each effect has a broad definition, but you don't build unique effects from the ground up, you apply effects that the Theories dictate are always possible.


I look forward to the theories. The class seems fine for a caster though I'm always weary of a caster class with empty levels (either they are underpowered or a PrC will come allong and provide +1 to existing caster levels just to fill them in).

Don't worry, I only planned it up to 12th level. There'll be more.


Holy moly...this is making my skin crawl if your doing what I thinkyour doing...crossing Wizard with ToB....then again...lower the power...give it per encounter..hmm...I need more info...Jonny Five is ALIVE!

The ToB is my inspiration to a degree. If we want to talk in their terms, disciplines and manoeuvre are both one in the same, but certain effects aren't available until their practitioner level is high enough.


I came up with a PrC a while ago which has a spellcasting mechanic similar to what you're getting at: The Linguamancer (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=49501)

Does that help?

I still haven't had a chance yet to look at it, but I don't want to seem like I ignored your post. I'll get back to it later.