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  1. - Top - End - #91
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    FabulousFizban's Avatar

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    How to not suck as a Sorcerer:

    Step 1: Play a Bard
    May I borrow some bat guano?

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Snivlem View Post
    Dr.Cliche: What are your options to either 1) remake your character, or 2) discard your character and make a new one at the same level?
    Well, I don't want to scrap this character. And rebuilding it entirely is not an option either.

    Quote Originally Posted by danpit2991 View Post
    have you talked to your DM yet about retooling your spells and metamagic?
    We're leveling up very soon, and he's given me permission to swap out more spells than usual.

    I don't think retooling metamagic is going to happen.
    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Surely there is no other reason why they would hire a charismatic and intelligent if scandalous infernal-blooded pretty boy to steal an high-ranking woman's clothes.
    “Plot” is what the DM does to amuse himself when the players aren’t talking.

  3. - Top - End - #93
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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    i know you would probably want an asi but i stand by what i said about magic initiate or spell sniper i think possibly with swapping out your spells like you are planning you might be better off with sniper and EB because sniper also boosts your other spells range its like you get permanent distant metamagic and you ignore cover so thats a bonus but if you want more spells the magic initiate would be best

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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by danpit2991 View Post
    i know you would probably want an asi but i stand by what i said about magic initiate or spell sniper i think possibly with swapping out your spells like you are planning you might be better off with sniper and EB because sniper also boosts your other spells range its like you get permanent distant metamagic and you ignore cover so thats a bonus but if you want more spells the magic initiate would be best
    Spell sniper increases only spells involving attack rolls. Distant spell metamagic can double the range of any spell, including saving throw spells, buffs and battlefield control spells.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Strangways View Post
    Spell sniper increases only spells involving attack rolls. Distant spell metamagic can double the range of any spell, including saving throw spells, buffs and battlefield control spells.


    meh close enough for me, but you are correct my bad

  6. - Top - End - #96
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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Sorcerers pick metamagic first, then pick spells based on that.

    You have Quicken and Twin. Quicken works best with channeled spells that keep using your actions, but Twin is easy.

    Pick powerful single target concentration spells. That's it. Literally do that and you'll be strong. Need a strong CC effect? Levitate. Now you can take 2 creatures out of the fight for 10 minutes.

    More good choices:
    Phantasmal Force: This is insanely strong. Make them think they're covered in fire ants. Make a dragon think barbed wire is constricting around its wings. Etc.
    Moonbeam: Uses your action. You can quicken with your bonus while channeling this for good sustained damage.
    Ray of Sickness: Decent damage. A decent debuff. And for 1 sorcery point you hit 2 targets? That's a winner.
    Enlarge/Reduce: Its not amazing, but yoy can enlarge 2 party members for extra damage. In an ideal world where you enlarge 2 players and both are dual wielding you get 4d4 damage a round. Not bad.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    I recently found a solution to the Sorcerer issue.

    Sorcerer was rated the most unsatisfactory class to play in a poll. The source of the poll (it was either on this site or an official WotC poll) has escaped my mind at the moment, but I do remember that piece of data. Sorcerers in past editions were balanced with other class due to flexibility, however in 5th, they really don't have much making them better than wizards. They simply don't have the flexibility. Metamagic rocks when you use it, but many of them are situational at best.

    The solution to this, however, is allowing sorcerers to use the spell point variant rule. It gives them the flexibility to nova better and to have more reliable damage that sorcerers simply don't get otherwise. It's worked out well for me in my games, and I don't think it's game breaking (as long as only sorcerer gets it). Talk to your DM. This, I believe, can improve your experience quite a bit.
    Hello, I'm a bard.

    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. If you're one of the 22% that didn't, copy and paste this into your signature.
    Mine was in a small town named Redcrest. The PCs set up a freelance adventuring group named the White Wolves.

    "I'm going to give Bill Clinton some gold pieces. You might become an assassin, too, if you had to pay for your mother's chemo!"

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Moonbeam is not on the Sorc's spell list.

    Also, Spell Points really are fantastic, but also breaks a certain challenge that Sorcs were supposed to come with - namely, the inefficiencies of converting lower level slots to higher level slots.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Twizzly513 View Post
    I recently found a solution to the Sorcerer issue.

    Sorcerer was rated the most unsatisfactory class to play in a poll. The source of the poll (it was either on this site or an official WotC poll) has escaped my mind at the moment, but I do remember that piece of data. Sorcerers in past editions were balanced with other class due to flexibility, however in 5th, they really don't have much making them better than wizards. They simply don't have the flexibility. Metamagic rocks when you use it, but many of them are situational at best.

    The solution to this, however, is allowing sorcerers to use the spell point variant rule. It gives them the flexibility to nova better and to have more reliable damage that sorcerers simply don't get otherwise. It's worked out well for me in my games, and I don't think it's game breaking (as long as only sorcerer gets it). Talk to your DM. This, I believe, can improve your experience quite a bit.
    I really can't see my DM allowing this.
    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Surely there is no other reason why they would hire a charismatic and intelligent if scandalous infernal-blooded pretty boy to steal an high-ranking woman's clothes.
    “Plot” is what the DM does to amuse himself when the players aren’t talking.

  10. - Top - End - #100
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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    I really can't see my DM allowing this.
    never know till you ask

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    I'm currently playing in a campaign as a Shadow sorcerer. I'm really enjoying my character in terms of personality/roleplaying. However, whenever it comes to combat, they're about as effective as a dead gerbil. Arguably less so as at least the other characters wouldn't have to worry about protecting a dead gerbil.

    We're currently Lv3, and I've got the following spell list:

    Chill Touch
    Frostbite
    Prestigitation
    Minor Illusion

    Shield
    Chromatic Orb
    Sleep

    Maximilian's Earthen Grasp

    (For the most part, I was aiming for a cold/shadow/necrotic theme.)

    Anyway, it just seems like I just don't do anything meaningful in combat. My cantrips either do pitiful damage or nothing at all. Sleep gets maybe 1 weak enemy at most. Maximilian's Earthen Grasp has so far failed to do anything.

    Have I just chosen bad spells? If so, what should I pick instead?

    Otherwise, can anyone give me any advice on playing a (shadow) sorcerer and doing something meaningful with them in combat?
    You need firebolt.

    Until 5th level, pull out that bow or crossbow, because you get your dexterity bonus to damage.

    What are your stats? Any elf with a high dexterity can use a bow very effectively.

    Chill touch is good spell if you are using it to its fullest. Say versus undead beating on the fighter, now they are swinging away with disadvantage

    Same with frostbite, will cause disadvantage as well... but on all enemy. So next time AFB, see if you can lose chill touch for another cantrip, as frostbite is very similar to chill touch

    Now twinning chromatic orb is sweet, but 1 spell point for a 1st level spell and you could turn it up a notch by casting chromatic orb as second level spell and then twinning that for 2 sorcery points

    Also you can quicken a cantrip or any spell that costs an action, turning it into a bonus action.... allowing you to shoot your bow as an action. But this costs 2 sorcery points.

    An EK does this war magic and improved war magic

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    In my opinion, what you actually need is not better access to metamagic and different spells. I would recommend a completely different strategy: convert your sorcery points into spell slots.

    Maximilian's earthen grasp is a good example why. The spell lets you attempt to do 2d6 damage and restrain every turn for 1 minute. Few fights last more than a minute in game, so you get the earthen grasp for a whole fight. With 2 second-level slots, you get earthen grasp for 2 fights. However, if you turn your 3 sorcery points into a second-level spell slot, you can do it for 3 whole fights instead. That's a lot of saves, and with a DC 14 save, most enemies should fail 30-60% of the time. Plus, if it hits, it does more damage than any cantrip.

    If you are set on changing spells and don't want more saves, I would recommend switching Sleep for Mage Armour and learning Shadow Blade, because it gives you a 2d8 damage attack each turn for a minute, and has advantage if the target is in dim light or darkness.

    In conclusion, metamagic is not as useful as spell slots at low levels, so you should spend sorcery points for more spells.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by bc56 View Post
    In my opinion, what you actually need is not better access to metamagic and different spells. I would recommend a completely different strategy: convert your sorcery points into spell slots.

    Maximilian's earthen grasp is a good example why. The spell lets you attempt to do 2d6 damage and restrain every turn for 1 minute. Few fights last more than a minute in game, so you get the earthen grasp for a whole fight. With 2 second-level slots, you get earthen grasp for 2 fights. However, if you turn your 3 sorcery points into a second-level spell slot, you can do it for 3 whole fights instead. That's a lot of saves, and with a DC 14 save, most enemies should fail 30-60% of the time. Plus, if it hits, it does more damage than any cantrip.
    I'd have more faith in this strategy if Earthen Grasp hadn't failed dismally every single time I used it thus far.
    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Surely there is no other reason why they would hire a charismatic and intelligent if scandalous infernal-blooded pretty boy to steal an high-ranking woman's clothes.
    “Plot” is what the DM does to amuse himself when the players aren’t talking.

  14. - Top - End - #104
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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by LeonBH View Post
    Moonbeam is not on the Sorc's spell list.

    Also, Spell Points really are fantastic, but also breaks a certain challenge that Sorcs were supposed to come with - namely, the inefficiencies of converting lower level slots to higher level slots.
    Whoops. Somehow misread. Sorry about that. Hm. I need to find some good quicken examples then. The points about Twin still stand tho. Sorry. I usually run Twin/Subtle or Twin/Heighten depending on my builds. I only usually run Quicken for my Sorcadins. Anyone know some good sustained action spells off hand for Quicken?

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garresh View Post
    Whoops. Somehow misread. Sorry about that. Hm. I need to find some good quicken examples then. The points about Twin still stand tho. Sorry. I usually run Twin/Subtle or Twin/Heighten depending on my builds. I only usually run Quicken for my Sorcadins. Anyone know some good sustained action spells off hand for Quicken?
    sure. the new dragon breath spell.

    problem is, right now he doesn't have enough SP to sustain use of quicken regardless.

    so right now, the better use would be things like, say, quickening a spell and then dashing, disengaging, dodging, hiding, helping, using an object, and so forth in situations where it becomes necessary. or, alternately, in some cases using a cantrip that has its full value from the start instead of a damage cantriop (for example, it may be worth casting a light spell, or using mold earth to create some cover, in certain situations).

    basically, sorcerer is just one of the easier classes to screw up, and one of the harder classes to correct mistakes you've made with it, and there is really not much about the class that ever bothers to explain it. it's got some definite design issues, most of which can be compensated for.... *if* you know what you're dealing with in advance. if you don't, and again, i must point out that there are no clear indications in the class that it is necessary, you can very easily be kinda like a wizard except crappier in most ways, which is pretty frustrating.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    I'm currently playing in a campaign as a Shadow sorcerer. I'm really enjoying my character in terms of personality/roleplaying. However, whenever it comes to combat, they're about as effective as a dead gerbil. Arguably less so as at least the other characters wouldn't have to worry about protecting a dead gerbil.

    We're currently Lv3, and I've got the following spell list:

    Chill Touch
    Frostbite
    Prestigitation
    Minor Illusion

    Shield
    Chromatic Orb
    Sleep

    Maximilian's Earthen Grasp

    (For the most part, I was aiming for a cold/shadow/necrotic theme.)

    Anyway, it just seems like I just don't do anything meaningful in combat. My cantrips either do pitiful damage or nothing at all. Sleep gets maybe 1 weak enemy at most. Maximilian's Earthen Grasp has so far failed to do anything.

    Have I just chosen bad spells? If so, what should I pick instead?

    Otherwise, can anyone give me any advice on playing a (shadow) sorcerer and doing something meaningful with them in combat?
    Hi!

    Soo... I read all thread until page 3 then dropped... ^^
    But it seems you still didn't resolve your conundrum to enjoy your Sorcerer.

    Basically, when you pick a Sorcerer you have two extremes to base upon:
    - cookie cutter Sorcerer, who has a basically static (or nearly) selection of spells that allow him to be useful to any party in most situations: Shield, Web, Phantasmal Force, Enhance Ability, Fireball, Slow, Polymorph, etc...
    - tailored Sorcerer: pick a thematic and a core role/tactic and build around, like the classic (and a bit boring ^^) Fire Draconic Sorcerer: Expeditious Retreat, Mirror Image, Burning Hands, Fireball, Wall of Fire with Empowered and either Quicken or Distant metamagics.

    With a cursor that you can move in-between depending on how specific you want your character to be.

    From what I see you have (had?) several problems.
    1. Sleep: already explained by others, just swap it (I'd say "keep it" if you were otherwise enjoying the Sorcerer and going for an infiltration character: in combat it is really useless).
    2. Nearly all your offensive spells target Constitution. Constitution is usually decent to high on monsters. On the contrary, mental states are usually weak until at least CR 5-6. Big, high heavy monsters tend to have great AC and STR saves but low DEX saves. Agile monsters tend to have low to medium AC.
    So, my advice would be: trash your current selection if your DM will allow it or swap as you progress.
    My suggestion for your spells and cantrips.

    Cantrips:
    You can keep Chill Touch: its really not that bad, actually pretty decent: necrotic is common, but not THAT common unless you are in a thematic campaign. Range is great so you can always try and hit something, and the rider is niche, but a great one, can really save your party when regen monsters are here. However, you could also swap it for Ray of Frost: lesser range, but soft control and less common resistance. In that case, swap Frostbite for Acid Splash: the only DEX-targeting save that is not completely opposite or "off" compared to your thematic.


    Spells:
    Mage Armor: only if you really have good DEX. Otherwise, just consider you are a mobile target and deal with it, and keep Shield instead.
    Shield: can save your life. Period.
    Ice Knife: as others said it's a great spell, both attack and DEX-save, with mini-AOE, plus it's totally in your thematic. And Careful-friendly.
    Earth Tremor: if you don't go for Ice Knife, Earth Tremor is a good alternative: nothing on failed save, but target DEX and make creatures fall prone: plus it works great with Careful Metamagic.
    Dragon's Breath: if you want a decent damage option, this is the best: but it requires to be nearly at melee range, so drop it unless you have great cover from party or great AC.
    Enhance Ability: if you have regular checks in your campaign, or if you have someone that uses Shove/Grapple regularly but has no good way to get advantage on them, take this. At least you get a sure way to be useful outside (and maybe during) fights.
    Shadow Blade: the other good option, great in fact for you in theory, since you get advantage on attack rolls... Except that it's concentration so it conflicts with Darkness.
    Phantasmal Force: targets INT, meaning nearly sure-hit on most creatures at your level. If you really want to not fail a spell, this is the one you want. ;) It's single-target but really good.
    Suggestion: DM-dependent: may be extremely great or underwhelming. Anyways, targets WIS which usually means great chance to succeed at that level.
    Web: make people stick in place, great in many situations. Works great with Careful if your Dm doesn't care about tweets, decently otherwise (friendlies have to be adept at DEX saves, or you must be good at positioning to avoid catastrophic backfire ^^).

    Soo, for your character, I'd go with Shield, Ice Knife , Enhance Ability, and Phantasmal Force (Suggestion instead if your DM rewards creativity) personally, because I think it's a pretty balanced composition, but anything goes really.

    3. Costly Metamagics
    At level 3, Twin is a real, big trap, as it is still at level 5 or 7 (even Heightened has better argumentation to be defended). It just costs too much.
    And you picked it along with Quicken.
    Quicken is fixed cost, so pain will go away as you progress. Note however that between Shadow Hound and some of the spells a Sorcerer can learn (even more since Xanathar's), you may have far enough things to cast/do with your bonus action to make Quicken much less relevant, at least for now.

    Drop Twin, seriously, unless there is a buff you know can be useful on two people at once. You have much better options: I'd suggest Careful obviously, because it works the best with the spells I suggested.
    But even Subtle can be great, after all, it means you can cast while hidden without losing the benefit. Especially if you plan on staying into Darkness. :)
    Distant is the last I'd recommend, pushing effective range to far enough to keep you mostly beyond any threat, but it also means you are far away from your friends to use it, so if something happens to you for whatever reason, you're probably toast. Pick it only if you really see many situations in your experience in which it would have been decisively useful.
    Heightened would be mostly redundant once you reach higher levels so it's a trap for you.
    Empower is a nice metamagic but only once you get really "big group of dice" spells such as Fireball... Which is contrary to your thematic. :)

    Personally, I'd pick Subtle simply because it makes both Enhance Ability and Suggestion golden in all non-combat situations (and even in some combat situations), by credibilizing the idea that what just happened was "natural".
    And Careful because it makes much easier for you to use Ice Spike/Earth Tremor without worrying about hurting allies, and it will work equally great with whatever debuff you choose to pick later.

    4. DARKNESS
    You have one of the greatest tactical tools: USE IT!!!!
    Seriously.
    You may not have realized it yet, but it can be one of your "best damage" spell or your "best defense" spell. Sure, it's not direct damage, but pair it with your attack spells to get advantage. Move it over enemies and they get into catch-22: move and lose cover/risk OA/ get into a trap or be unable to target anyone beyond immediate vicinity.
    Use it to protect your melee while they rush towards your enemies then move it onto enemy archers or casters.
    Use it to provide a mobile "rear base" that friends can pop into/out from (they see nothing but they can still know how to make a proper 180, or you can tell them. Only a picky DM would make this counter-productive. Beware however, monsters could Ready actions for when people get out of the smoke).
    Use it to cover a friend that is laying trap or preparing a big spell.

    Remember, Darkness is mobile, in that it can be attached to an object: nothing prevents you to cast it on a stone and throw it/shoot it away as your free interaction, or make it flown by a friendly creature (like a familiar of someone else).

    In summary...
    - Change your spell list ASAP (since it's apparently legal in AL sessions to rebuild a low level character, your DM should really have no problem with you remaking your spell and metamagic selection).
    - Don't try to deal damage, try to apply control: your friends will profit from it. The important thing is not that "you dealt damage" but that "you helped grow the total amount of damage".
    - Use your strengths: you picked Shadow for a reason, use Darkness.
    - BE PATIENT and DON'T MULTICLASS!
    Especially into Warlock: those saying that are making you a nice, deadly trap!
    Not only will you feel a big boost in power when level 5, whatever spells you choose. But one level after you will get another great boost by getting an animal imposing disadvantage on your save or suck spells: you will become one of the most useful party members, I can assure you that (well, as soon as you get how to properly use it anyways ^^).
    Last edited by Citan; 2018-01-01 at 05:54 PM.

  17. - Top - End - #107
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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    Basically, when you pick a Sorcerer you have two extremes to base upon:
    - cookie cutter Sorcerer, who has a basically static (or nearly) selection of spells that allow him to be useful to any party in most situations: Shield, Web, Phantasmal Force, Enhance Ability, Fireball, Slow, Polymorph, etc...
    - tailored Sorcerer: pick a thematic and a core role/tactic and build around, like the classic (and a bit boring ^^) Fire Draconic Sorcerer: Expeditious Retreat, Mirror Image, Burning Hands, Fireball, Wall of Fire with Empowered and either Quicken or Distant metamagics.

    With a cursor that you can move in-between depending on how specific you want your character to be.
    Well, as I said earlier, I think debuffs would be a good fit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    Cantrips:
    You can keep Chill Touch: its really not that bad, actually pretty decent: necrotic is common, but not THAT common unless you are in a thematic campaign. Range is great so you can always try and hit something, and the rider is niche, but a great one, can really save your party when regen monsters are here. However, you could also swap it for Ray of Frost: lesser range, but soft control and less common resistance. In that case, swap Frostbite for Acid Splash: the only DEX-targeting save that is not completely opposite or "off" compared to your thematic.
    If I keep Chill Touch, are there any other spells I could swap Frostbite for? I'm not a fan of Acid Splash in general, and it really doesn't fit the theme.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    Spells:
    Mage Armor: only if you really have good DEX. Otherwise, just consider you are a mobile target and deal with it, and keep Shield instead.
    Shield: can save your life. Period.
    Ice Knife: as others said it's a great spell, both attack and DEX-save, with mini-AOE, plus it's totally in your thematic. And Careful-friendly.
    Earth Tremor: if you don't go for Ice Knife, Earth Tremor is a good alternative: nothing on failed save, but target DEX and make creatures fall prone: plus it works great with Careful Metamagic.
    Dragon's Breath: if you want a decent damage option, this is the best: but it requires to be nearly at melee range, so drop it unless you have great cover from party or great AC.
    Enhance Ability: if you have regular checks in your campaign, or if you have someone that uses Shove/Grapple regularly but has no good way to get advantage on them, take this. At least you get a sure way to be useful outside (and maybe during) fights.
    Shadow Blade: the other good option, great in fact for you in theory, since you get advantage on attack rolls... Except that it's concentration so it conflicts with Darkness.

    Soo, I'd go with Shield, Ice Knife, Earth Tremor, Enhance Ability personally.
    Shield and Ice Knife are fine. However, Earth Tremor and Enhance Ability are really out of place for my character. I'd rather go with stuff more like Suggestion and/or Phantasmal Force. Or maybe a movement/escape spell like Misty Step.

    Something I want to emphasise is that I really don't want buff spells like Enhance Ability if I can avoid them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    3. Costly Metamagics
    At level 3, Twin is a real, big trap, as it is still at level 5 or 7 (even Heightened has better argumentation to be defended). It just costs too much.
    And you picked it along with Quicken.
    Quicken is fixed cost, so pain will go away as you progress.
    Drop Twin, seriously, unless there is a buff you know can be useful on two people at once. You have much better options: I'd suggest Careful obviously, because it works the best with the spells I suggested.
    But even Subtle can be great, after all, it means you can cast while hidden without losing the benefit. Especially if you plan on staying into Darkness. :)
    Distant is the last I'd recommend, pushing effective range to far enough to keep you mostly beyond any threat, but it also means you are far away from your friends to use it, so if something happens to you for whatever reason, you're probably toast. Pick it only if you really see many situations in your experience in which it would have been decisively useful.
    Heightened would be mostly redundant once you reach higher levels so it's a trap for you.
    Empower is a nice metamagic but only once you get really "big group of dice" spells such as Fireball... Which is contrary to your thematic. :)
    I'd like to swap Twinned Spell for Subtle Spell but, as far as I'm aware, sorcerers aren't allowed to change their metamagic once they've selected it. Am I missing something?

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    4. DARKNESS
    You have one of the greatest tactical tools: USE IT!!!!
    Seriously.
    You may not have realized it yet, but it can be one of your "best damage" spell or your "best defense" spell. Sure, it's not direct damage, but pair it with your attack spells to get advantage. Move it over enemies and they get into catch-22: move and lose cover/risk OA/ get into a trap or be unable to target anyone beyond immediate vicinity.
    Use it to protect your melee while they rush towards your enemies then move it onto enemy archers or casters.
    Use it to provide a mobile "rear base" that friends can pop into/out from (they see nothing but they can still know how to make a proper 180, or you can tell them. Only a picky DM would make this counter-productive. Beware however, monsters could Ready actions for when people get out of the smoke).
    Use it to cover a friend that is laying trap or preparing a big spell.

    Remember, Darkness is mobile, in that it can be attached to an object: nothing prevents you to cast it on a stone and throw it/shoot it away as your free interaction, or make it flown by a friendly creature (like a familiar of someone else).
    You talk about using Darkness to protect our melee guys, but surely it screws them over as much as our enemies - since they'll also be fighting blind?

    I do like the idea of putting it on a familiar. If only sorcerers were still allowed to have them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    In summary...
    - Change your spell list ASAP (since it's apparently legal in AL sessions to rebuild a low level character, your DM should really have no problem with you remaking your spell and metamagic selection).
    I'm allowed to change my spells, but I'm not sure about metamagic. We're not playing AL, so I can't expect those rules to apply.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    - Don't try to deal damage, try to apply control: your friends will profit from it. The important thing is not that "you dealt damage" but that "you helped grow the total amount of damage".
    Fair enough. As above though, I'd much rather focus on debuffs or control than on buffing teammates. I know there are some good buffs (like the aforementioned Enhance Ability), but it's just not something I enjoy doing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    - Use your strengths: you picked Shadow for a reason, use Darkness.
    Well, technically, I picked Shadow for the flavour and for the Shadow Wolf thing.

    As above, my issue with Darkness is that it seems to screw the party over as much as it does our enemies. Let's say we're facing 3 guys and I cast Darkness to cover all of them. Okay . . . what next? Since no one else in my party can see in the darkness, they have to either fight blind (meaning they're as disadvantaged as the enemies inside it) or else just sit around twiddling their thumbs.

    Could you elaborate a bit more on how I can use it to affect enemies without screwing over my party in the process?

    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    - BE PATIENT and DON'T MULTICLASS!
    Especially into Warlock: those saying that are making you a nice, deadly trap!
    Not only will you feel a big boost in power when level 5, whatever spells you choose. But one level after you will get another great boost by getting an animal imposing disadvantage on your save or suck spells: you will become one of the most useful party members, I can assure you that (well, as soon as you get how to properly use it anyways ^^).
    Fair enough. I look forward to one day reaching the promised levels. I really hope they're as good as everyone says they are.
    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    Surely there is no other reason why they would hire a charismatic and intelligent if scandalous infernal-blooded pretty boy to steal an high-ranking woman's clothes.
    “Plot” is what the DM does to amuse himself when the players aren’t talking.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    darkness actually balances out in ordinary situations for your party (they can't see the target, but the target can't see them, so advantage and disadvantage cancel out), helps if your party would normally have disadvantage (any number of advantages vs any number of disadvantages cancels out, so if you're already at disadvantage it's improving you to normal, weirdly enough), and hurts if they have advantage (as noted above), unless they can move out of the darkness, use their advantage, and move back in.

    so, for example, if you have a barbarian and are fighting enemies that cannot see in magical darkness, the barbarian could step out of the darkness, use reckless attack, and then move back in where the enemies will not be able to gain advantage to hit him. also handy if you're facing an enemy that inflicts status effects like restrained or blinded.

    of course, that may rub your DM the wrong way, which in turn may trigger house rules to come into play.

    it is also useful for breaking line of sight, which can range between extremely valuable to essentially meaningless, depending on your enemies. some things of interest that rely on sight:

    - opportunity attacks
    - the majority of all targeted spells that don't use attack rolls.
    - many targeted monster or class abilities that don't use attack rolls.
    - the ability to hide

    you may also want to figure out how your DM rules darkness to work. most i've played with interpret it as a sphere of inky blackness that blocks vision from passing through, but some people have an interpretation where the darkness spell only obscures things inside it, allowing you to see things on the other side of the darkness from yourself normally. that has some very interesting implications for your party if that is how your DM rules it.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    I wholeheartedly and respectfully disagree on Twin being a trap. Twin is the only metamagic that scales with spell level. As such, it is the most costly metamagic LATE GAME. If you're twinning a 2nd level spell, it's the same price as quicken. If you twin a 1st level spell then you're getting a very good deal. Twinned Chromatic Orb for instance is an extremely cost effective attack. The choice as always comes down to where you want to spend your points. And really, ANY metamagic is costly at that level. Except Subtle or Empower, cause they're amazing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garresh View Post
    I wholeheartedly and respectfully disagree on Twin being a trap. Twin is the only metamagic that scales with spell level. As such, it is the most costly metamagic LATE GAME. If you're twinning a 2nd level spell, it's the same price as quicken. If you twin a 1st level spell then you're getting a very good deal. Twinned Chromatic Orb for instance is an extremely cost effective attack. The choice as always comes down to where you want to spend your points. And really, ANY metamagic is costly at that level. Except Subtle or Empower, cause they're amazing.
    Yes.

    People are idiots with twin. It is best used to make low to mid level spells hit really hard. Twinned disintegrate does feel awesome, but you can get way more value out of three twinned phantasmal forces.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Twin is not a trap option. But it is expensive, and it is easy to use it incorrectly, making it effectively a trap option if you don't know what you're doing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    I'd like to swap Twinned Spell for Subtle Spell but, as far as I'm aware, sorcerers aren't allowed to change their metamagic once they've selected it. Am I missing something?
    DM kindness is what you're missing. Give your DM a present or treat him to lunch. I got to swap metamagic abilties by just asking my DM.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    As above, my issue with Darkness is that it seems to screw the party over as much as it does our enemies. Let's say we're facing 3 guys and I cast Darkness to cover all of them. Okay . . . what next? Since no one else in my party can see in the darkness, they have to either fight blind (meaning they're as disadvantaged as the enemies inside it) or else just sit around twiddling their thumbs.

    Could you elaborate a bit more on how I can use it to affect enemies without screwing over my party in the process?
    You cast it on yourself and cast ranged spells with advantage, meanwhile hits against you are with disadvantage. You are also immune to all effects that require sight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by strangebloke View Post
    Yes.

    People are idiots with twin. It is best used to make low to mid level spells hit really hard. Twinned disintegrate does feel awesome, but you can get way more value out of three twinned phantasmal forces.
    that depends a great deal on the situation. twinned disintegrate has its place too, and while i certainly wouldn't use it on random mooks, if you're facing a pair of drow mages (or a drow mage and a drow priestess of lloth, or two priestesses, or whatever - drow simply happen to be a reasonable example because i know they have some glass cannons) as mooks for a big boss somewhere, i would say that blasting them both into nonexistence in the first round is a reasonably solid idea. if they were supporting a drow archmage, you just went from a double deadly encounter down to a medium encounter in a single action (assuming they both failed their save, which is around 50% at level 11 typically unless you already sent your hound to say hello to one or both).

    that sounds like a pretty reasonable gamble to me.

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    Default Re: How to not suck as a Sorcerer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    I have a couple of questions:
    1) Is there a winner between Phantasmal Force and Suggestion, or should I aim to have both?
    2) Regarding Phantasmal Force, do you have any suggestions (hah!) for illusions that should keep enemies occupied?
    1) Both are very good. I think PF is overall better since it can effect enemies that can't speak your language. I wouldn't aim to have both, as a sorc your spell selection is very limited so you want spells that can be useful in a variety of situations, not to stock up on similar effects.

    2) Illusory chains or vines (or tentacles, or whatever) that grapple and restrain the enemy and wrap around their mouth (inhibiting verbal spellcasting).

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    Quote Originally Posted by ProseBeforeHos View Post
    1) Both are very good. I think PF is overall better since it can effect enemies that can't speak your language. I wouldn't aim to have both, as a sorc your spell selection is very limited so you want spells that can be useful in a variety of situations, not to stock up on similar effects.

    2) Illusory chains or vines (or tentacles, or whatever) that grapple and restrain the enemy and wrap around their mouth (inhibiting verbal spellcasting).
    on 2, there is a dev tweet explicitly stating that phantasmal force cannot inflict negative effects beyond what the spell explicitly says it can.

    or, in other words, they will justify that they wriggled out of the chains or cleared the gag from their mouth, not that they cannot move or speak.

    which is why i went from really quite liking phantasmal force in the right circumstances, to basically putting it on the "never choose" list.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    on 2, there is a dev tweet explicitly stating that phantasmal force cannot inflict negative effects beyond what the spell explicitly says it can.

    or, in other words, they will justify that they wriggled out of the chains or cleared the gag from their mouth, not that they cannot move or speak.

    which is why i went from really quite liking phantasmal force in the right circumstances, to basically putting it on the "never choose" list.
    You got a link to that?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garresh View Post
    I wholeheartedly and respectfully disagree on Twin being a trap. Twin is the only metamagic that scales with spell level. As such, it is the most costly metamagic LATE GAME. If you're twinning a 2nd level spell, it's the same price as quicken. If you twin a 1st level spell then you're getting a very good deal. Twinned Chromatic Orb for instance is an extremely cost effective attack. The choice as always comes down to where you want to spend your points. And really, ANY metamagic is costly at that level. Except Subtle or Empower, cause they're amazing.
    Yeah, I totally agree with that.
    But you know, you can learn another metamagic at 10th level. THAT is when it's useful.
    That or if you want to specialize on twinning a particular debuff such as Haste or Polymorph because you have two people in your party who like it.

    Otherwise, it's usually too costly for its worth until level 7-8, especially for archetypes that have other uses for Sorcery points like Shadow (Darkness with automatic vision through it) and Wild Magic (Bend Luck).

    And I was speaking here in the context of OP: he wants to debuff, so Twin is a trap. Not only is it much better to ensure one creature is effectively affected by a spell (Heightened), but several of Sorcerer spells allow multitarget when upcast like Hold Person or Blindness, so you can do without it.
    Quote Originally Posted by strangebloke View Post
    Yes.

    People are idiots with twin. It is best used to make low to mid level spells hit really hard. Twinned disintegrate does feel awesome, but you can get way more value out of three twinned phantasmal forces.
    Confer above and under, learn to read within context, and learn politeness while you are at it, you will grow yourself. :)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    Well, as I said earlier, I think debuffs would be a good fit.

    If I keep Chill Touch, are there any other spells I could swap Frostbite for? I'm not a fan of Acid Splash in general, and it really doesn't fit the theme.
    That's the problem, there are none that fit your theme and targeting DEX or WIS as far as I remember...
    I think you'll have to compromise here, unless you make your DM agree to shoehorn a cantrip from another list as a homebrew (Toll the Dead is indeed your best option), take Magic Initiate (same), or have DM agree to both integrate and refluff Sacred Flame as UnHoly Flame in your homebrew. :/

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    Shield and Ice Knife are fine. However, Earth Tremor and Enhance Ability are really out of place for my character. I'd rather go with stuff more like Suggestion and/or Phantasmal Force. Or maybe a movement/escape spell like Misty Step.

    Something I want to emphasise is that I really don't want buff spells like Enhance Ability if I can avoid them.
    No problem mate, it's your character, my suggestions are just suggestions. So indeed take Suggestion and Misty Step, or Hold Person which I forgot but is also great (and targets WIS). :=)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    I'd like to swap Twinned Spell for Subtle Spell but, as far as I'm aware, sorcerers aren't allowed to change their metamagic once they've selected it. Am I missing something?
    Talk to your DM if you didn't already, explaining how current situation is extremely boring and frustrating for you, and annoying for others. IF he doesn't allow metamagic swap, then I daresay he's acting like an ass and forgetting primary goal of DM: "everybody have fun".

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    You talk about using Darkness to protect our melee guys, but surely it screws them over as much as our enemies - since they'll also be fighting blind?
    I do like the idea of putting it on a familiar. If only sorcerers were still allowed to have them.
    Yeah, you are totally right: if you just drop Darkness where your friends fight in melee, they will just scream at you for messing with them. XD
    What I suggested to do was the case when they have to run for several dozen feets before reaching objective, where you can accompany and lead them while protecting everyone by holding a Darkness-stone.
    Or a case where you have several angles to cover, you can use Darkness to bother attackers from one side while you focus on the other.
    Or a case where you have archers in a tower raining hell down on you, putting them in Darkness will effectively bind them (stay there and be useless, go down and get sniped by a friendly).

    Basically, it's like a dual-bladed weapon: you can harm your party when used improperly, and it does require big wits and quick judgement. But once you learn how to handle it, it will be your best spell, at least until you start getting more serious ones (Hypnotic Pattern, Polymorph, etc).

    If you like the idea of a familiar but nobody in your party can take it, then it could make a case for Magic Initiate: Wizard (if your DM agrees cantrip reselect, pick only offensive ones as caster, take utility one with Wizard) or Ritual Caster (requires your DM to work with you to get extra spells, otherwise it's a trap in the long run).

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    I'm allowed to change my spells, but I'm not sure about metamagic. We're not playing AL, so I can't expect those rules to apply.
    In my view, AL is the strict "basic" management rules any DM should follow, in other words, they just have rules to make experience consistent whatever group you play with.
    You are in a home game, so there is really no good reason for your DM to refuse a respec that would change absolutely nothing in game balance, allow you to finally enjoy your character (after all, you did go out of your comfort zone, that should be encouraged) and make your friends rely on you rather than mock you.

    Seriously, one couldn't begrudge a DM for not noticing his frustration (DM is supposed to, but there are many legitimate reasons that could explain his failure at that), so if you didn't push the subject to him, it's your own fault. But once you (will?) have explained, there is, again, no valid reason to refuse (while he could perfectly refuse a cantrip refluff for example: it's ridiculous, but homebrew is DM's lair in the first place so...).


    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    Well, technically, I picked Shadow for the flavour and for the Shadow Wolf thing.

    As above, my issue with Darkness is that it seems to screw the party over as much as it does our enemies. Let's say we're facing 3 guys and I cast Darkness to cover all of them. Okay . . . what next? Since no one else in my party can see in the darkness, they have to either fight blind (meaning they're as disadvantaged as the enemies inside it) or else just sit around twiddling their thumbs.

    Could you elaborate a bit more on how I can use it to affect enemies without screwing over my party in the process?
    I tried to give an illustration above: basically you have to take into your own hands the redefinition of Darkness position whenever it's useful, with the objective of giving cover to allies without hampering their melee attacks.
    So in the example above, indeed just casting Darkness over everyone would be a bad idea. ^^
    If your encounters generally include only melee enemies, then indeed it will be hard to get a good use for Darkness besides just hiding yourself... Or injured allies (you have someone downed, nobody can stabilize/heal him until enemies get half a dozen shots at him? Either bet on him surviving until an ally takes care of him, or put him under Darkness -as stupid as it seems, since downed=not moving so technically any decent archer would still hit him, unless I'm mistaken by RAW now he has disadvantage-).

    Besides that, what you can effectively do depends on your party: with a Thief Rogue, you could help him lay traps while enemies don't see him then lure them on its. With a Wizard or Bard, you could hide and protect him while he prepares a Leomund's Tiny Hut. Etc etc...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché View Post
    Fair enough. I look forward to one day reaching the promised levels. I really hope they're as good as everyone says they are.
    Honestly I congrats you on being patient thus far with the character because it must indeed be hard. :) But I have faith in your DM being a normal, understanding human and letting you respec metamagic, cantrips and spells.
    Last edited by Citan; 2018-01-02 at 04:38 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ProseBeforeHos View Post
    You got a link to that?
    well, here's chris perkins (not the official rules guy):

    https://www.sageadvice.eu/2016/10/30...tatus-effects/

    and here's jeremy crawford (is the official rules guy):

    https://www.sageadvice.eu/2017/05/30...omment-page-1/

    (note that the second part of crawford's tweet amounts to permission for a DM to run their own game. no kidding).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Citan View Post
    - BE PATIENT and DON'T MULTICLASS!
    Especially into Warlock: those saying that are making you a nice, deadly trap!
    Not only will you feel a big boost in power when level 5, whatever spells you choose. But one level after you will get another great boost by getting an animal imposing disadvantage on your save or suck spells: you will become one of the most useful party members, I can assure you that (well, as soon as you get how to properly use it anyways ^^).
    Absolutely disagree - warlock multiclass is not a trap option at all whatsoever. It gives you the best ranged cantrip DPR option you can possibly have and if you go hexblade great AC and frees up a spell choice (shield from the hexblade list).

    I absolutely loved taking the warlock multiclass at level 5 (5 sorcerer 2 warlock) on my phoenix sorcerer and it made me feel way more powerful and flexible. Did it delay later spells or features? Yep. Was it worth it? Definitely in my opinion. I would advise taking it at later levels though, definitely after level 5. You want level 5 ASAP as it is indeed a huge boost.

    However, if it doesn't fit your RP then don't take it.

    For the OP, as you answered my question:

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cliché
    Thinking about it, I think Debuffer and Controller would be the best fit for my character. Not sure which I'd want as my primary role - it might depend on their respective spell lists.

    Regarding my theme, Necrotic/vampire-y would be more accurate. I only went with ice because necrotic seemed rather underrepresented on the sorcerer spell list.
    I would start with changing your spell list to represent that. With controller/debuffer you want Hold Person, Web, Suggestion, Phantasmal Force, Hypnotic Pattern (when you get there), Thunderwave (for the push). These are the types of spells you want, and you can definitely stick with Ray of Frost, Chill Touch, and Frostbite. You're not there to damage, just to add as many riders and debuffs as possible. Ray of Frost and Chill Touch are d8's versus Fire Bolts D10 so the damage isn't a big difference but those debuffs can really help.

    Hold person with twin, if your campaign has a lot of humanoids, is huge as a controlller/debuffer. It can really turn the tide and gives you that amazing feeling of useful.

    I hate to say it, since it's been repeated, but Sorcerer really starts to shine the higher level you go. Post level 5 it really takes off as you have more Sorcery points to play around with and a good amount of spell slots so you can feel comfy sacrificing them. Also, pre-level 5, if you're not using something like Chromatic Orb to do damage then you're better off using a crossbow. Since you're not going after damage, then don't bother with it at all and just use your cantrips for the riders and care not about the damage.

    Keep in mind: large creatures normally have decent strength and constitution. Smaller ones would have better dex and probably not great strength/constitution.

    I'd ask your GM if you can use the Spell Point variant rules and roll your Sorcery points into the spell point pool for your game as that will help a lot too. I wish that was standard for sorcerers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Raif View Post
    Absolutely disagree - warlock multiclass is not a trap option at all whatsoever. It gives you the best ranged cantrip DPR option you can possibly have and if you go hexblade great AC and frees up a spell choice (shield from the hexblade list).

    I absolutely loved taking the warlock multiclass at level 5 (5 sorcerer 2 warlock) on my phoenix sorcerer and it made me feel way more powerful and flexible. Did it delay later spells or features? Yep. Was it worth it? Definitely in my opinion. I would advise taking it at later levels though, definitely after level 5. You want level 5 ASAP as it is indeed a huge boost.
    Yes, sorry, it's definitely a trap, FOR OP.
    He took Shadow for the Hound, he wants to be a debuffer.
    - Armor is not a problem in his experience, so there goes the armor proficiency.
    - Shield can also be learned on next level of Sorcerer, or with Magic Initiate: Sorcerer at worst. Plus confer OP experience, not much a problem surviving so far.
    - Eldricht Blast is basically the same as any other cantrip until you get level 5, or pick Agonizing Blast (which means another level in dip). It's only the best ranged cantrip option (aka worth dipping just for it) only after level 11. Otherwise, just Magic Initiate or Spell Sniper is largely enough.

    Dipping is the worst idea there is for someone that wants to play with great debuffs and hound imposing disadvantage.
    Especially two levels dip: instead of getting Slow / Hypnotic Pattern at level 5 (6,500 XP) and Shadow Hound at 6 (14000 XP), he would get them at respectively 23000 and 34000 XP.
    How many more sessions of play does that represent? I'll let each one here make his own calculation based on self experience. ;)
    Last edited by Citan; 2018-01-02 at 04:47 AM.

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