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Thread: Blue Magic

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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Blue Magic

    Hello!

    One of my players is new to D&D and a huge Final Fantasy fan. We were discussing various characters/jobs and what they might be in D&D.

    Later on, out of curiosity I did some searching and, of course, there's lots of homebrew versions of many of the jobs. My imagination thus inspired, I took a stab at one of them myself: the Blue Mage.

    Since I have a very sporadic group, getting much playtesting done will be a challenge, and in fact there has been zero playtesting of the idea I had. Nevertheless, I threw it up at the DM's Guild. It is my first foray into creating a character option like this. Here's a link:

    Blue Magic class option

    I am fully prepared for the gamut of positive and negative feedback. It was an idea I had and who knows? Maybe it is lightning in a bottle or at least with some work could be halfway decent.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Flumph

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    Feb 2012

    Default Re: Blue Magic

    Quote Originally Posted by longshotist View Post
    Hello!

    One of my players is new to D&D and a huge Final Fantasy fan. We were discussing various characters/jobs and what they might be in D&D.

    Later on, out of curiosity I did some searching and, of course, there's lots of homebrew versions of many of the jobs. My imagination thus inspired, I took a stab at one of them myself: the Blue Mage.

    Since I have a very sporadic group, getting much playtesting done will be a challenge, and in fact there has been zero playtesting of the idea I had. Nevertheless, I threw it up at the DM's Guild. It is my first foray into creating a character option like this. Here's a link:

    Blue Magic class option

    I am fully prepared for the gamut of positive and negative feedback. It was an idea I had and who knows? Maybe it is lightning in a bottle or at least with some work could be halfway decent.
    As base or prestige class this could work and despite its odd ways to acquire its abilities you have made it very easy to understand and use. This being said as a sub-class it is blatantly overpowered in almost every category. Being able to use supernatural abilities of creatures of CR equal to your level will give spells with far higher levels than that of other casting sub-classes or half-casters. Also over the course of the campaign this feature could be more versatile than prepared spells. Affinity is in every respect more powerful than Battle Magic 8 levels earlier. Your tenth level might be the only thing balanced if it wasn't on a broken frame. Than your final ability could allow you to use 8th or 9th level spells twice a day or more(CR depending) with no cost. Either way this needs a complete rehash.
    Last edited by Amnoriath; 2017-02-11 at 02:15 PM.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Blue Magic

    Quote Originally Posted by Amnoriath View Post
    As base or prestige class this could work and despite its odd ways to acquire its abilities you have made it very easy to understand and use. This being said as a sub-class it is blatantly overpowered in almost every category. Being able to use supernatural abilities of creatures of CR equal to your level will give spells with far higher levels than that of other casting sub-classes or half-casters. Also over the course of the campaign this feature could be more versatile than prepared spells. Affinity is in every respect more powerful than Battle Magic 8 levels earlier. Your tenth level might be the only thing balanced if it wasn't on a broken frame. Than your final ability could allow you to use 8th or 9th level spells twice a day or more(CR depending) with no cost. Either way this needs a complete rehash.
    Thank you for the comments! I definitely appreciate the feedback and I absolutely plan to rethink and revise, probably many times over. It is naturally very difficult to try and translate creature powers into a system similar to spell levels, which is why I grouped the "spell slot levels" the way the tiers of adventure are grouped. Actual spells that creatures can cast being gained is not my intention - just the various special Actions that creatures have. Do you think it's a wording issue, or is even that too much? Certainly, there are a LOT of creatures with a vast number of special actions.

    Good call on that Battle Magic comparison. I will absolutely put more thought into that.

    The top level abilities I thought, for sure there are some doosies in there. But at the same time, I felt like they are comparable to spells but had their own limitations. For instance, at 19th-20th level, the most powerful abilities they could get from creatures in the Monster Manual (CR20) are: a Pit Fiend's Fear Aura or Magic Resistance (only through Consume), Ancient While Dragon's Cold Breath (about on par with Meteor Swarm (which a wizard would get 2 levels earlier), Ancient Brass Dragon's Fire or Sleep Breath (or Change Shape through Consume), or Demilich's Howl (close to PWK) or Life Drain.

    Does the fact that spells are not eligible for blue magic, and only usable during rage make a difference?

    Again, thank you for your insight, it is much appreciated!

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Goblin

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    Default Re: Blue Magic

    The biggest problem I see with this is that you've tried to peg /day uses to the CR of the creatures that the ability is taken from when there's no real relationship between how high a creature's CR is and how powerful its Actions are, especially when you introduce scaling DCs to the equation. There are any number of low CR creatures with devastating abilities attached to low save DCs or low attack modifiers. There's also the fact that monster abilities are written with the intent that they'll be applied to PCs, who have different rules (like death saves) than monsters.

    Spoiler: List of potentially problematic monster actions that could be used in the CR 0-4 slots
    Show
    • All creatures within 30' must succeed on a saving throw or drop to 0 hit points (3d6 psychic damage on a success). (Banshee, CR 4)
    • On a successful attack roll the target is grappled, restrained, and blinded. At the start of each of the target's turns the target takes 2d6+3 bludgeoning damage. (Rug of Smothering, CR 2)
    • Attack roll to deal 5d6 damage and force the target to make a saving throw or be knocked prone. (Gibbering Mouther, CR 2)
    • Force a creature to make an intelligence saving throw or potentially be stunned until it receives an application of Greater Restoration (the ability is complicated). (Intellect Devourer, CR 2)
    • Force a creature to make a Wisdom saving throw or fall asleep for 10 minutes. (Jackalwere, CR 1/2)
    • A bite attack that forces a save against lycanthropy. (Wererat CR 2, Werewolf CR 3 or Wereboar CR 4)
    • All creatures in a 30 ft cone must succeed on a Constitution saving throw or be paralyzed for 1 minute, repeating the saving throw at the end of each of their turns. (Pentadrone CR 2)
    • Caster makes a melee attack dealing 2d6+2 necrotic damage and 1d4 strength damage. (Shadow CR 1/2).
    • One humanoid must succeed on a Widsom saving throw or be magically charmed for 1 day. The charmed target obeys the casters verbal or telepathic commands. The target can repeat the saving throw only if it suffers any harm or receives a suicidal command. (Succubus/Incubus CR 4)
    • Too hard to write out but the Gelatinous Cube's Engulf action (CR 2).

      There are a lot more that require the 10th level consume feature, but just as an example...
    • The caster and up to three willing creatures within 5 feet magically enter the Ethereal Plane from the Material plane, or vice versa. (Nightmare, CR 3)


    I also worry that this might make a lot more work as a DM, because you'll perpetually have to be cross-checking monster stat blocks to make sure that what the Barbarian's going to have access to isn't out of line.
    Last edited by Flashy; 2017-02-11 at 05:48 PM.
    My homebrew: A list of 5e homebrew magitech augments found here, a homebrew race of devil-toads here, and the Professional, an all mundane support class. Criticism is much appreciated!

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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Blue Magic

    Quote Originally Posted by Flashy View Post
    The biggest problem I see with this is that you've tried to peg /day uses to the CR of the creatures that the ability is taken from when there's no real relationship between how high a creature's CR is and how powerful its Actions are, especially when you introduce scaling DCs to the equation. There are any number of low CR creatures with devastating abilities attached to low save DCs or low attack modifiers. There's also the fact that monster abilities are written with the intent that they'll be applied to PCs, who have different rules (like death saves) than monsters.

    Spoiler: List of potentially problematic monster actions that could be used in the CR 0-4 slots
    Show
    • All creatures within 30' must succeed on a saving throw or drop to 0 hit points (3d6 psychic damage on a success). (Banshee, CR 4)
    • On a successful attack roll the target is grappled, restrained, and blinded. At the start of each of the target's turns the target takes 2d6+3 bludgeoning damage. (Rug of Smothering, CR 2)
    • Attack roll to deal 5d6 damage and force the target to make a saving throw or be knocked prone. (Gibbering Mouther, CR 2)
    • Force a creature to make an intelligence saving throw or potentially be stunned until it receives an application of Greater Restoration (the ability is complicated). (Intellect Devourer, CR 2)
    • Force a creature to make a Wisdom saving throw or fall asleep for 10 minutes. (Jackalwere, CR 1/2)
    • A bite attack that forces a save against lycanthropy. (Wererat CR 2, Werewolf CR 3 or Wereboar CR 4)
    • All creatures in a 30 ft cone must succeed on a Constitution saving throw or be paralyzed for 1 minute, repeating the saving throw at the end of each of their turns. (Pentadrone CR 2)
    • Caster makes a melee attack dealing 2d6+2 necrotic damage and 1d4 strength damage. (Shadow CR 1/2).
    • One humanoid must succeed on a Widsom saving throw or be magically charmed for 1 day. The charmed target obeys the casters verbal or telepathic commands. The target can repeat the saving throw only if it suffers any harm or receives a suicidal command. (Succubus/Incubus CR 4)
    • Too hard to write out but the Gelatinous Cube's Engulf action (CR 2).

      There are a lot more that require the 10th level consume feature, but just as an example...
    • The caster and up to three willing creatures within 5 feet magically enter the Ethereal Plane from the Material plane, or vice versa. (Nightmare, CR 3)


    I also worry that this might make a lot more work as a DM, because you'll perpetually have to be cross-checking monster stat blocks to make sure that what the Barbarian
    Hmm...yes those are excellent examples of some OP stuff. So there must definitely be some sorts of limitations and/or rethinking of the slots. Any thoughts on that? Would reducing the available slots help mitigate? Outside of whatever abilities the character has gained, they're a barbarian with core abilities only. Perhaps with less uses that would make up for it, at least somewhat. Or cutting out top tier monsters altogether and reworking the ranges of slots to cap out at 14-15 or so.

    Thanks to you as well for the criticism, it is appreciated! I definitely knew this would need a lot of work and revision so getting insights like yours is a huge help.

    I don't want to think it's a total lost cause, and I'm interested enough in the uniqueness of it to keep working at it to make it better!

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Blue Magic

    Based on the feedback here and elsewhere, I did some revising to clarify the language and rethought some of the abilities gained by leveling.

    Thank you again for your insights, they are absolutely appreciated and any other thoughts you or anyone else has I look forward to hearing and giving thought to while I work to refine and improve this idea.

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