Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Grod_The_Giant's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    One reason that spellcasters can be so strong-- especially frail ones, like wizards and sorcerers-- is that they can layer on defensive enchantments. Even without Persistent Spell cheese, there are more than enough strong spells with long durations to turn a 96-pound weakling wizard into a walking tank.

    But what if that was impossible?

    Here's my proposal: For every ongoing spell affecting one character, there is a cumulative 10% chance that the spell will malfunction, according to the following table. So the first buff will work normally, there will be a 10% chance for the second to fail, a 20% chance for the third, and so on.

    Malfunction table:
    {table]1-40|Spell fails; slot expended, but no ill effects.
    41-60|Mystic Cascade; 1d4 spells currently affecting the intended target end. Each spell which is terminated in this manner deals 1d6 damage/spell level to its target.
    61-80|Arcane Feedback; 1d4 spells currently affecting the intended target end. The caster loses spell slots with a total spell level equal to the combined spell level of the terminated spells.
    81-90|Explosive Cascade; as mystic cascade, but the damage is dealt to all targets within 30 feet.
    91-100|Random bizarre but non-beneficial effect-- see Rod of Wonder table for suggestions.[/table]

    Spells with an instantaneous duration aren't affected. Supernatural abilities don't count as spells when determining malfunction chance.
    Last edited by Grod_The_Giant; 2011-12-16 at 03:43 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Grod's Law: You cannot and should not balance bad mechanics by making them annoying to use
    Major Works:
    • STaRS: The Simple Tabletop Roleplaying System; my attempt at a generic rules-light system.
    • Giants and Graveyards: My collected 3.5 revisions-- houserules, class fixes, ban lists and more.
    • Chopping Down the Christmas Tree: Rules for low- or no-magic item games of 3.5.
    • D&D in M&M-- Balancing 3.5 by porting it lock, stock, and barrel into a more balanced system.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ElfMonkGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2011

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Wow, that's a fantastic idea. It doesn't nearly remove the issue of caster vs. noncaster but at least it's something.

    I think the table should be bigger, wild-magic style! I want to accidentally turn my fighter into a cloud of flesh-eating moths!

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Wyntonian's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Oregon
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Well, I'd make it start with the second spell active on a target. Like, cast one spell, no chance for screwups. Upon layering on a second spell, 10% chance of messing it up. Upon casting a third buff spell on the same target, 20% chance.

    Now, this is probably exactly what you were saying, but I'm not exactly sure. Correct me, either way.

    Another thought, make it possible to add a second or third spell to a target through feats. That seems decently balanced.
    Guess who's good at avatars? Thormag. That's who.

    A Campaign Setting more than a year in the making, Patria!

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Grod_The_Giant's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Quote Originally Posted by Wyntonian View Post
    Well, I'd make it start with the second spell active on a target. Like, cast one spell, no chance for screwups. Upon layering on a second spell, 10% chance of messing it up. Upon casting a third buff spell on the same target, 20% chance.

    Now, this is probably exactly what you were saying, but I'm not exactly sure. Correct me, either way.

    Another thought, make it possible to add a second or third spell to a target through feats. That seems decently balanced.
    That is, in fact, exactly what I'm saying. The feat isn't a bad idea, though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Grod's Law: You cannot and should not balance bad mechanics by making them annoying to use
    Major Works:
    • STaRS: The Simple Tabletop Roleplaying System; my attempt at a generic rules-light system.
    • Giants and Graveyards: My collected 3.5 revisions-- houserules, class fixes, ban lists and more.
    • Chopping Down the Christmas Tree: Rules for low- or no-magic item games of 3.5.
    • D&D in M&M-- Balancing 3.5 by porting it lock, stock, and barrel into a more balanced system.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Wyntonian's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Oregon
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    To continue this train of thought, would spells cast by different casters risk overlapping and derping out? What is they were from different classes?
    Guess who's good at avatars? Thormag. That's who.

    A Campaign Setting more than a year in the making, Patria!

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Deepbluediver's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    The US of A

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    I like the basic premise, but are you sure 10% is a high enough failure rate?

    A 70-80% chance is still plenty good enough for most people to take a shot; at least I would.

    Perhaps make it stacking AND cumulative, or something.
    Like second buff spell is 10% chance; third buff is 30% (10+20); fourth buff is 60% (10+20+30) I think you get the idea.


    Edit: I think we definitely need to have spells from different classes stack; though I would consider perhaps waving the first spell of a different kind (i.e. arcane vs divine)
    Last edited by Deepbluediver; 2011-12-15 at 11:21 PM.
    "A man is known by the company he organizes." -Ambrose Bierce

    Homebrew Extended Signature!

    Progress in my Core rebalance project: 9 of 11 classes complete
    Druid, Fighter, Cleric, Rogue, Ranger, Wizard, Sorcerer, Monk & Paladin

    Magic Fix: spell rewrites paused; rules under revision


    Non-core stuff I want to take a crack at rewriting: Healer, Warlock, Ninja, Samurai, Artificer, Soulborn Incarnum, psionics, bloodlines, and the item-crafting system

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Sep 2009

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepbluediver View Post
    I like the basic premise, but are you sure 10% is a high enough failure rate?
    10% for the first spell, 20% for the second, 30% for the third...it adds up.

    If that's not enough, another idea is that when a spell does misfunction, all the existing buffs are also rerolled for misfunctioning (at the same percentage). That would make buff stacking (or debuff stacking) a definitely bad idea.

    The problem with the whole idea, though, is that some buffs actually are required in many situations, and removing anti-spell protective buffs (death ward, PfE, freedom of movement, maybe Mind Blank as well) can actually make certain casters stronger. Perhaps those few spells can be given immunity to this effect.

    An alternative approach is to make it harder or even impossible to boost your CL for purposes of resisting dispel; when someone has 10 enchantments up, a targeted dispel at even a CL of 4 lower will pop an average of 3 of them, which is quite good. (At even CL, you're popping half of the enchantments on your target per casting.) Of course, that doesn't help the noncasters against casters, but it does substantially help the mixed caster/noncaster groups against pure caster groups.
    My general 3.5 balance fix.
    My psionics remix.
    My common-sense houserules.
    More minor homebrew (weapons, races).

    Complete system remake (under construction, barely started)

    Ever want to try your hand at optimizing, but dislike heavy emphasis on splatbooks and/or the rocket tag phenomenon?
    Come visit the Core Coliseum today, for a totally different style of optimization.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Grod_The_Giant's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Quote Originally Posted by Yitzi View Post
    10% for the first spell, 20% for the second, 30% for the third...it adds up.

    If that's not enough, another idea is that when a spell does misfunction, all the existing buffs are also rerolled for misfunctioning (at the same percentage). That would make buff stacking (or debuff stacking) a definitely bad idea.
    Ooo, I like that.

    The problem with the whole idea, though, is that some buffs actually are required in many situations, and removing anti-spell protective buffs (death ward, PfE, freedom of movement, maybe Mind Blank as well) can actually make certain casters stronger. Perhaps those few spells can be given immunity to this effect.
    I admit, they are vital defensive buffs, but how often are they all required at the same time? Save or die/suck spells are a problem, but I don't think that the solution is to make their counters better.

    An alternative approach is to make it harder or even impossible to boost your CL for purposes of resisting dispel; when someone has 10 enchantments up, a targeted dispel at even a CL of 4 lower will pop an average of 3 of them, which is quite good. (At even CL, you're popping half of the enchantments on your target per casting.) Of course, that doesn't help the noncasters against casters, but it does substantially help the mixed caster/noncaster groups against pure caster groups.
    I'm not entirely sure what you mean here, but the gist of it doesn't sound like a useful solution to me. Most player groups can manage a dispel magic, but very few monster encounters can. Maybe have spells backfire when dispelled?
    Last edited by Grod_The_Giant; 2011-12-16 at 11:21 AM.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Sep 2009

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Save or die/suck spells are a problem, but I don't think that the solution is to make their counters better.
    It might not be the right solution, but making their counters worse makes them more of a problem, so you lose more than you gain unless you combine this with a fix for save-or-X spells.

    pquote]I'm not entirely sure what you mean here, but the gist of it doesn't sound like a useful solution to me. Most player groups can manage a dispel magic, but very few monster encounters can.[/QUOTE]

    It's not that rare at higher levels (where the issue is strongest), but I can see how it's rare enough that you could still run into some issues, particularly if you allow the powerful buffs like Bite of the Werebear and Shapechange. (Well, unless the DM is nasty and all the high-level enemies without their own dispel carry around high-level scrolls of Greater Dispel to use with UMD).
    My general 3.5 balance fix.
    My psionics remix.
    My common-sense houserules.
    More minor homebrew (weapons, races).

    Complete system remake (under construction, barely started)

    Ever want to try your hand at optimizing, but dislike heavy emphasis on splatbooks and/or the rocket tag phenomenon?
    Come visit the Core Coliseum today, for a totally different style of optimization.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Ziegander's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Pabrygg Keep
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Problem: This rule makes no distinction between positive and negative ongoing spells. If it did, it would be silly, but because it doesn't you have the situation where the more buffs you are able to apply to yourself the more resistant to non-instantaneous enemy spells you become.
    The Lorewarden's Lair: My new blog. Stop by and read some stories, comic book scripts, and more! Also on Blogger!

    Homebrew


    Other Stuff
    Spoiler
    Show
    Special Thanks: Kymme! You and your awesome avatarist skills have made me a Lore Warden in addition to King of Fighter Fixes!

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Grod_The_Giant's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Quote Originally Posted by Ziegander View Post
    Problem: This rule makes no distinction between positive and negative ongoing spells. If it did, it would be silly, but because it doesn't you have the situation where the more buffs you are able to apply to yourself the more resistant to non-instantaneous enemy spells you become.
    I had noticed that problem. Again, it's less of a problem, because magic-using NPCs are much rarer than magic-using PCs in most campaigns, and debuffing casters is an even smaller subset, but yeah. On the one hand, it does help cancel out the nerf on vital defensive spells like mind blank On the other... many buffs shouldn't equal protection.

    Seems the best two options are to either allow the first spell cast by a new caster to ignore the failure chance, or just ignore the rule for NPC casters, for simplicity's sake.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Dec 2010

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    So I'd actually say, don't let anything stack. Second spell, regardless of source or type creates the 10% failure chance. However, if you combine this with the backfire cascade where one spell dropping can make the rest of them drop, then it balances the issue of existing buffs making debuffs difficult.

    Basically, if you're unbuffed, the debuff will just stick and do what it would normally do. If you're buffed to the gills, the debuff won't debuff you but you're going to take a ton of damage and other stuff as your other buffs peel away in a cascade. So you can actually use a 'dangerous' buff stack as a sort of universal resistance to nasty duration spells like Dominate, at the cost of a wild surge severely injuring you if the resistance applies.

    It might be even more interesting if instantaneous spells also suffered this chance and could create a cascade. It'd mean that you could basically replace the list of 10 counters to SoDs and the like with enough buffs to soak a spell or two before they cascade away.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Sep 2009

    Default Re: Thought Experiment-- enchantment malfunctions

    Quote Originally Posted by Ziegander View Post
    Problem: This rule makes no distinction between positive and negative ongoing spells. If it did, it would be silly, but because it doesn't you have the situation where the more buffs you are able to apply to yourself the more resistant to non-instantaneous enemy spells you become.
    Perhaps the best solution is to combine two of the previously mentioned ideas: Each time a spell is cast on a buffed (or debuffed) individual, there is a flat 10% chance it will malfunction. There is also a flat 10% chance, for every other spell on that individual, that the existing spell will malfunction.
    My general 3.5 balance fix.
    My psionics remix.
    My common-sense houserules.
    More minor homebrew (weapons, races).

    Complete system remake (under construction, barely started)

    Ever want to try your hand at optimizing, but dislike heavy emphasis on splatbooks and/or the rocket tag phenomenon?
    Come visit the Core Coliseum today, for a totally different style of optimization.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •