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    Default A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    It's ridiculous that specialist wizards have to permanently ban two schools of magic entirely, forever. They can't even use scrolls or wands. And none of the cool kids are Diviners. I don't care if you agree with me or not, that's not what this is about; it's finding an alternative.

    A specialist wizard can identify a banned school with Spellcraft, albeit at a -5 penalty. Maybe instead of banning schools, specialist wizards should instead suffer a -5 penalty (or whatever) to Spellcraft checks to learn or identify spells from every school except their chosen school, and they should have to make a Spellcraft check to cast those spells. This is painful for some time, and by the time they could make the spellcraft checks without no chance of failure whatsoever, the benefits won't really matter. This reflects that they received most of their education in one specific school of magic, and only dabbled in the others, and instead of for some reason being mystically forbidden from learning spells forever, they can overcome this over a long period of time as they grow in power from the study of magic.

    Suggestions for changes to this, other alternatives/etc.?


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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Here's a fix: Ban Wizards as the broken class they are. There. Now no class is left that is ridiculously myopic in its focus on one school.

    I'd also make Dread Necromancers, Beguilers, Sorcerers, and Warmages cast spells off both INT and CHA, rather than just CHA. MAD weakens a class somewhat, and requiring decent INT for spontaneous spellcasting at least helps replace the flavour of a wizard.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Omegonthesane View Post
    Here's a fix: Ban Wizards as the broken class they are. There. Now no class is left that is ridiculously myopic in its focus on one school.

    I'd also make Dread Necromancers, Beguilers, Sorcerers, and Warmages cast spells off both INT and CHA, rather than just CHA. MAD weakens a class somewhat, and requiring decent INT for spontaneous spellcasting at least helps replace the flavour of a wizard.
    Rolling Initiative to attack the troll >_>.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Golden-Esque View Post
    Rolling Initiative to attack the troll >_>.
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    Last edited by Harperfan7; 2009-07-28 at 08:24 PM.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Golden-Esque View Post
    Rolling Initiative to attack the troll >_>.
    I'll give you a flanking bonus.


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    Me: The kind that armies have been using for millennia.
    DM: They didn't do it with swords!
    Me: Which makes us so much cooler.

    Player: Where are the babau in relation to everyone else?
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    Player: I was just wondering about a fireball.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Take my sword!

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    I agree with the OP that the system needs a fix. But a penalty that later becomes irrelevant seems to light. Perhaps a cap on the number of spells/level they can know from a bannedpenalized school, or spells from a penalized school take two spell slots to prepare? So if my Enchanter chooses Evocation as a penalized school he needs to use two first level slots to memorize Magic Missile once. Or, my favorite, spells of penalized schools are one or two levels higher for that wizards? So my Enchanter gets Magic Missile as a second level spell? Or maybe a third level one?

    Also, as for the troll, STRIKE OF THE TRIADIC MASTER! AVALANCHE OF BLADES! STRIKE OF PERFECT CLARITY! DIAMOND NIGHTMARE BLADE! INFERNO BLADE! BLADE OF MALICE!!! There. That should take care of it...
    Last edited by Kallisti; 2009-07-28 at 07:29 PM.
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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kallisti View Post
    I agree with the OP that the system needs a fix. But a penalty that later becomes irrelevant seems to light. Perhaps a cap on the number of spells/level they can know from a bannedpenalized school, or spells from a penalized school take two spell slots to prepare? So if my Enchanter chooses Evocation as a penalized school he needs to use two first level slots to memorize Magic Missile once. Or, my favorite, spells of penalized schools are one or two levels higher for that wizards? So my Enchanter gets Magic Missile as a second level spell? Or maybe a third level one?

    Also, as for the troll, STRIKE OF THE TRIADIC MASTER! AVALANCHE OF BLADES! STRIKE OF PERFECT CLARITY! DIAMOND NIGHTMARE BLADE! INFERNO BLADE! BLADE OF MALICE!!! There. That should take care of it...
    That might work, but those spells would also become less useful/people are less likely to cast the spells because they take up multiple spell slots, and what about 9th level Evocations? Do they become Epic spells?


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    DM: "Sunder the wall?! WT**** kind of tactics are these!?"
    Me: The kind that armies have been using for millennia.
    DM: They didn't do it with swords!
    Me: Which makes us so much cooler.

    Player: Where are the babau in relation to everyone else?
    Me: They're right behind you. Vesil is covered in Loki's blood. That is their location in relation to you.
    Player: I was just wondering about a fireball.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jergmo View Post
    That might work, but those spells would also become less useful/people are less likely to cast the spells because they take up multiple spell slots, and what about 9th level Evocations? Do they become Epic spells?
    Better than being outright unable to cast them. As for 9th levels, 10th level spell slots are NOT epic spells, and I have never heard anyone complain about that PARTICULAR aspect of the Epic rules.
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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Abandon vancian magic - switch to "psionic variant", with mana points. Increase the casting cost for spells not of the choosen school.
    Problem solved.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kallisti View Post
    Also, as for the troll, STRIKE OF THE TRIADIC MASTER! AVALANCHE OF BLADES! STRIKE OF PERFECT CLARITY! DIAMOND NIGHTMARE BLADE! INFERNO BLADE! BLADE OF MALICE!!! There. That should take care of it...
    Don't be silly; you need to overcome its Regeneration to finish it off.

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    Other than that, I do like Kallisti's idea for a one-level "metamagic" penality applied to restricted schools. You can still do stuff, you're just not as efficient as a generalist at doing said stuff. It might trivalize the disadvantage for being a specialist, though, as the few spells you couldn't cast before are once again on your spelllist now.

    You'll need to decide how activating scrolls/wands work for these specailists.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by SinsI View Post
    Abandon vancian magic - switch to "psionic variant", with mana points. Increase the casting cost for spells not of the choosen school.
    Problem solved.
    Doesn't help in the slightest. 3e psionics works because the powers are built with PP and scaling in mind; giving wizards spell points just makes the problem worse.
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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by DracoDei View Post
    Better than being outright unable to cast them. As for 9th levels, 10th level spell slots are NOT epic spells, and I have never heard anyone complain about that PARTICULAR aspect of the Epic rules.
    Epic Spellcasting gives you 10th level spell slots, and the spells to give higher spell slots than that are also Epic feats.

    Quote Originally Posted by SinsI View Post
    Abandon vancian magic - switch to "psionic variant", with mana points. Increase the casting cost for spells not of the choosen school.
    Problem solved.
    While this does sound like it could be fun, as said, it would complicate things further.

    Also, I just now realized there's already information for a Spell Points variant.
    Last edited by Jergmo; 2009-07-28 at 09:46 PM.


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    DM: "Sunder the wall?! WT**** kind of tactics are these!?"
    Me: The kind that armies have been using for millennia.
    DM: They didn't do it with swords!
    Me: Which makes us so much cooler.

    Player: Where are the babau in relation to everyone else?
    Me: They're right behind you. Vesil is covered in Loki's blood. That is their location in relation to you.
    Player: I was just wondering about a fireball.

    My Homebrew

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    The major problem that you'd encounter is that there would no longer be any reason to play a Generalist Wizard and far less of a disadvantage to playing a Focused Specialist. Of course, this might be your intention...

    As it stands, perhaps you could get the necessary flavour (specialisation in a particular set of spells) from UA's Domain Wizard variant? In that case, you don't lose knowledge from any schools, and you get additional spell slots with which you can cast your "domain spells".

    I dunno... It does seem like a bit of a balance issue, and it's not like Wizards are hurting for spell knowledge. Still, it makes sense from a roleplaying point of view and it could be fine for lower-optimisation campaigns.

    [edit] If you do keep your variant... Perhaps Wizards wouldn't be capable of filling their highest-level spell slots with spells from a "restricted" school? Furthermore, perhaps they could only learn "restricted" spells from scrolls, and never be able to learn them at level-up?

    [edit^2] You could also force them to pay an experience point cost for learning restricted spells... That's RP-justifiable - it represents the extra study that would be required to master such spells.
    Last edited by Salvonus; 2009-07-28 at 10:07 PM.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Incidentally, did I mention the troll is a demilich wizard/cleric/mystic theurge?

    *calms down*

    Domain Wizard sounds like the easiest fix to me. Or you could use the Specialist Wizard Variants and force every specialist wizard to pick the one that takes away their bonus spell slots, then make banned schools cast at a level higher than usual.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Healer to help the Troll here. There's absolutely NO reason why Wizards should be buffed. A good alternative would be to make a specialist ban 7 schools.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by ozgun92 View Post
    Healer to help the Troll here. There's absolutely NO reason why Wizards should be buffed. A good alternative would be to make a specialist ban 7 schools.
    But heal spells will hurt a Demilich...

    Also, bet you 10 gold pieces I can find a way to break the game with nothing but the Conjuration school. What's the minimum effort to make a fairly normal campaign to test this theory?

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    I agree that it is silly that just because you like and study extra hard on school X, suddenly you are incapable of casting a huge subset of spells.

    I think something along the lines of "pick a speciality, gain bonuses for that school, gain a farily small penalty to all other schools (except general spells)".
    The sizes for those penalties is not really my speciality to decide, but impossible to cast from other schools, no. Harder due to focusing elsewhere during studies and intrests, yes.

    Edit: And it is not like banning spells does jack anymore with shadow evocations etc.
    Last edited by Khanderas; 2009-07-30 at 01:46 AM.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    I seriously think each school should be divided into 2-3 sub-schools, for a total of around 20 schools. Choose one, ban 19, you're good to go.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by ozgun92 View Post
    I seriously think each school should be divided into 2-3 sub-schools, for a total of around 20 schools. Choose one, ban 19, you're good to go.
    Heh, alittle too much IMO and it would likly just either make noone pick a speciality, or invent new spells like Evocation Spider Climb.

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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Khanderas View Post
    Heh, alittle too much IMO and it would likly just either make noone pick a speciality, or invent new spells like Evocation Spider Climb.
    The mental image that comes from that is blasting hand holds with beams of magic force. It is an agreeable one, though heavy on the collateral damage, not one for in-town use.
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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    I like diviners! At least, with the right splats...
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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Khanderas View Post
    Heh, alittle too much IMO and it would likly just either make noone pick a speciality, or invent new spells like Evocation Spider Climb.
    We already have that--the orb spells exist because the devs thought conjurers needed direct damage spells, mage armor is Evocation but shield is Abjuration, and so on. If anything, adding more schools for specialization purposes would give you an excuse to be more strict with school divisions, not less, since the whole purpose is to limit options.
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    Default Re: A possible alternative to specialists banning schools?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jergmo View Post
    A specialist wizard can identify a banned school with Spellcraft, albeit at a -5 penalty. Maybe instead of banning schools, specialist wizards should instead suffer a -5 penalty (or whatever) to Spellcraft checks to learn or identify spells from every school except their chosen school, and they should have to make a Spellcraft check to cast those spells.
    This is nowhere near a balancing factor. All this would do is give wizards all the benefits of specialization with none of the drawbacks.

    A -5 penalty to anything except maybe thier Intelligence score is stupidly easy for any wizard to overcome. Getting a continuous +30 bonus to a given skill via spells and/or magic items is peanuts to a wizard.

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