The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed - Coming in December and available for pre-order now
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 32
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Deck of spells (3.5)

    Because I like the mechanic and character of drawing a card for a random effect but the 3.5 deck of many things is a trap, how do we feel that this would work?

    This deck of cards grants knowledge of magic at random to the user. At the beginning of each day, the user may draw one card at random from the pack. As they draw the card, they gain the knowledge of one random spell which they can use once that day and that day only with a caster level equal to their class level.

    Spades: [list of 13 vaguely useful wizard spells, going from e.g. Ace of Fly to 2 of Prestidigitation]
    Hearts: [list of 13 vaguely useful cleric spells]
    Diamonds: [list of 13 vaguely useful bard spells]
    Clubs: [list of 13 vaguely useful druid spells]
    Joker: Gain the knowledge of a level 1 or level 0 spell of your choice from one of the caster lists above

    The spells cast require no components etc.
    Shuffle the cards back in once used. Any attempt to trick the deck into granting extra spells breaks the artefact.

    Would this be fun/useful, and how would you cost it? (I'd guess a big part of the cost would depend on the average spell level granted)
    Last edited by paddyfool; 2019-04-15 at 03:59 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    AssassinGuy

    Join Date
    Jun 2018

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    Hmmm this reminds me of another artifact, the book of infinite spells. I feel like changing the effects of the deck of many things to just make them spells is a little bit less exciting. In my opinion, there should still be some trap cards.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2015

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    The point of the deck of many things is to derail the campaign.
    How many cards must one player draw before the campaign is disintegrated?

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Flumph

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lancaster, UK
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by noob View Post
    The point of the deck of many things is to derail the campaign.
    How many cards must one player draw before the campaign is disintegrated?
    It depends what disintegrates first. The campaign... or the player.
    Formerly known as Stu42.

    Beguiler beguilers beguiler beguilers beguile beguile beguiler beguilers.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2015

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by Studoku View Post
    It depends what disintegrates first. The campaign... or the player.
    if the player is disintegrated it usually destroys the campaign too.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    I take your point. Let's call this deck something else - The Deck of Many Spells, maybe?

    Idea for how it came to be: A party's wizard, cleric, and druid meet with their sponsor, a somewhat legendary bard, to discuss a wedding gift for their party's beatstick, Graarg the barbarian. For some time now, Graarg has been hankering after magic powers of his own. His favourite toy is an action trigger eternal wand of minor image that he once had commissioned, and which he uses whenever the opportunity presents itself. Such as for display of lewd images to distract opponents on the brink of battle. That kind of thing.

    Anyhow, one of them has come across an obscure tome on item crafting, and after a little too much wine, they realise they have a way, using this tome, to grant their buddy limited access to some of their own favourite tricks. And the rest is history.

    Spell list:
    Ace of spades: Fly
    King of spades: Fireball
    Queen of spades: Dispel Magic
    Jack of spades: Invisibility
    10 of spades: Mirror Image
    9 of spades: Web
    8 of spades: Scorching Ray
    7 of spades: Feather Fall
    6 of spades: Grease
    5 of spades: Sleep
    4 of spades: Magic Missile
    3 of spades: Prestidigitation
    2 of spades: Detect Magic

    Ace of hearts: Magic Circle against Evil
    King of hearts: Cure Serious Wounds
    Queen of hearts: Protection from Energy
    Jack of hearts: Spiritual Weapon
    10 of hearts: Bull's strength
    9 of hearts: Cure Moderate Wounds
    8 of hearts: Hold Person
    7 of hearts: Bless
    6 of hearts: Sanctuary
    5 of hearts: Shield of faith
    4 of hearts: Cure Light Wounds
    3 of hearts: Guidance
    2 of hearts: Cure Minor Wounds

    Ace of diamonds: Confusion
    King of diamonds: Charm Monster
    Queen of diamonds: Major Image
    Jack of diamonds: Suggestion
    10 of diamonds: Tongues
    9 of diamonds: Heroism
    8 of diamonds: Alter Self
    7 of diamonds: Hideous Laughter
    6 of diamonds: Charm Person
    5 of diamonds: Silent Image
    4 of diamonds: Unseen Servant
    3 of diamonds: Message
    2 of diamonds: Ghost Sound

    Ace of Clubs: Call Lightning
    King of Clubs: Summon Nature's Ally III
    Queen of Clubs: Wind Wall
    Jack of Clubs: Spider Climb
    10 of clubs: Gust of Wind
    9 of clubs: Summon Nature's Ally II
    8 of clubs: Summon Swarm
    7 of clubs: Goodberry
    6 of clubs: Entangle
    5 of clubs: Summon Nature's Ally I
    4 of clubs: Speak with animals
    3 of clubs: Light
    2 of clubs: Create Water

    I've been deliberately selecting SRD spells only to make this item as universally applicable as possible. I've also tried to pick spells that would either be generally fun or generally useful, but I don't think this would break at all if you wanted to swap out a spell for another of the same level.

    For those of you who'd want a degree of trap to the item, you could also have a cursed version where the user has a risk of accidentally casting a spell at once whenever they draw a card. EDIT: Or a version where there was a risk of misfire etc. But this is really just meant to be a bit of fun, to give access to one random spell each day and let the player see what use they can find for it.

    Spell list Edits: Shillelagh swapped out for Entangle. Acid Arrow swapped out for Scorching Ray.
    Last edited by paddyfool; 2019-04-17 at 07:17 AM.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

    Join Date
    Jun 2012

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    The Deck of Many Things isn't really a trap. The number of negative and positive effects is balanced, with all black cards granting some sort of harmful effect and all red cards granting a beneficial effect. The point is that using the item is a gamble, and choosing to take a card is a major decision. If every card is grants a beneficial effect, then there is no risk involved and there is never a reason for any character to not take a card. A deck of spells is an interesting idea on its own, but I wouldn't replace the Deck of Many Things with it.
    Rather than making it an infinite-use artifact with one charge per day, I'd cost each card as a single-use wondrous item and then cut the overall cost of the deck by maybe 25-30% for the randomization factor and make it function similarly to a Deck of Illusions. You can look through the deck to see what it contains, but it only functions when a card is drawn at random. The user draws a card and throws it out towards where he wants to target the spell; once discharged, the card becomes blank and can not be used again.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    You're right, of course. This isn't a replacement for that deck. It's just using a similar mechanic to have a harmless a d sometimes useful result.

    On reflection, I'd also say it's of much less than artifact level power. Compare and contrast its power and utility to that of an eternal wand, for instance; the latter would give you twice/day access to a spell you actually want. Whereas this is just a bit of fun, really.

    EDIT: How about if this item existed in each of the following versions:

    Deck of spells, eternal
    Draw one card per day as a half action; you may cast the corresponding spell once in the same day by playing the card as a half action. Caster level is equal to your character level; shuffle the card back in when cast, or at the end of the day.

    Deck of spells, immediate
    Draw a card as a half action. You immediately cast the corresponding spell as a free action, with a caster level of 10. You may select the target of the spell. Once cast, spells are discarded from the deck. You may, if you wish, look through the deck as a full round action to see which cards are remaining. Shuffle the deck after looking through it.

    Deck of spells, cursed
    As "immediate", but the character drawing the card is the target of the spell. However, the person holding the deck may, if they wish, offer the deck to another PC or NPC to draw from. (Where target would be unclear, some degree of DM fudge may be appropriate, eg summoning a nature's ally with this deck might mean that it appears on the target's head, or that it attacks the target, or that it follows the target around and protects them; similarly shillelagh... actually, let's just swap that out for the more useful entangle).

    Optional extra rule: With a DC 25 UMD or sleight of hand check, a character may draw two cards from the deck and pick one. With a DC 50 check they may pick 3 and use 1 or 2. Cards not selected are shuffled back into the deck.
    Last edited by paddyfool; 2019-04-15 at 02:32 AM.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    PairO'Dice Lost's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Malsheem, Nessus
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaern View Post
    The Deck of Many Things isn't really a trap. The number of negative and positive effects is balanced, with all black cards granting some sort of harmful effect and all red cards granting a beneficial effect.
    Along these lines, it might be more thematic if suits indicate effect type rather than spell list. Something like hearts = healing and defense, diamonds = creating/summoning creatures/objects, spades = direct offensive spells, and clubs = general utility, maybe.
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
    You can just call me Dice; that's how I roll.


    Spoiler: Sig of Holding
    Show

    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
    Darn you PoDL for making me care about a bunch of NPC Commoners!
    Quote Originally Posted by Chambers View Post
    I'm pretty sure turning Waterdeep into a sheet of glass wasn't the best win condition for that fight. We lived though!
    Quote Originally Posted by MaxiDuRaritry View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by PairO'DiceLost View Post
    <Snip>
    Where are my Like, Love, and Want to Have Your Manchildren (Totally Homo) buttons for this post?
    Won a cookie for this, won everything for this

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by PairO'Dice Lost View Post
    Along these lines, it might be more thematic if suits indicate effect type rather than spell list. Something like hearts = healing and defense, diamonds = creating/summoning creatures/objects, spades = direct offensive spells, and clubs = general utility, maybe.
    That's a servicable idea. I was also considering doing a deck that split the suits (eg Necromancy/Divination: Spades, Conjuration/Transmutation: Hearts, Illusion/Enchantment: Diamonds, Evocation/Abjuration: Clubs). Or tweaking the deck I had to go for a similar effect for each number / face card (eg rearranging so that each Ace is a buff, each King is an attack spell, each Queen a defensive or healing spell, each Jack a sneaky spell, each 10 one of the stat-boosting spells, etc).

    Also, I was considering building a higher level deck. For instance, rather than the current two level 0 spell, four level 1, four level 2 and three level 3 spell by suit deck, having a deck that went all the way up from 2 casting a cantrip to ace casting a level 9 spell. E.g.:

    2: level 0 spell, eg prestidigitation
    3: level 1
    4: level 2
    5: level 3
    6: level 3
    7: level 4
    8: level 4
    9: level 5
    10: level 5
    Jack: level 6
    Queen: level 7
    King: level 8
    Ace: level 9 spell, eg time stop

    Joker: Wish

    Obviously, this version would only be for high level play, you'd have to change the caster level for the versions where that's set (eg make it cast as caster level 20), and I'd no longer be able to split by class the same way since Bard would cap at 6 (meaning it would have to split by one of the other schemes). But it might be fun to build, anyway.
    Last edited by paddyfool; 2019-04-15 at 10:56 PM.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    PairO'Dice Lost's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Malsheem, Nessus
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by paddyfool View Post
    That's a servicable idea. I was also considering doing a deck that split the suits (eg Necromancy/Divination: Spades, Conjuration/Transmutation: Hearts, Illusion/Enchantment: Diamonds, Evocation/Abjuration: Clubs). Or tweaking the deck I had to go for a similar effect for each number / face card (eg rearranging so that each Ace is a buff, each King is an attack spell, each Queen a defensive or healing spell, each Jack a sneaky spell, each 10 one of the stat-boosting spells, etc).
    Combining my idea with those, you could have the suits set up as overarching offense/defense/utility/summons categories as I suggested and then give each number or face card a specific theme: 3 might be fooling sight (blindness/deafness for offense, mirror image for defense, invisibility for utility, and minor image for "summons"), 4 might be shapng fire (pyrotechnics for offense, fire trap for defense, continual flame for utility, and flaming sphere for summons), and so forth.

    Also, I was considering building a higher level deck. For instance, rather than the current two level 0 spell, four level 1, four level 2 and three level 3 spell by suit deck, having a deck that went all the way up from 2 casting a cantrip to ace casting a level 9 spell.
    That would tend to make it difficult to balance, since at lower levels it's too powerful to pull out 5th+ level spells and at higher levels the lower-level spells are likely to be a waste of a combat action. You might instead want to make Lesser, Standard, Greater versions of the deck with 0th-3rd, 3rd-6th, and 6th-9th level spells, respectively. Requires picking a lot more spells, but it would definitely be easier to balance and price.
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
    You can just call me Dice; that's how I roll.


    Spoiler: Sig of Holding
    Show

    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
    Darn you PoDL for making me care about a bunch of NPC Commoners!
    Quote Originally Posted by Chambers View Post
    I'm pretty sure turning Waterdeep into a sheet of glass wasn't the best win condition for that fight. We lived though!
    Quote Originally Posted by MaxiDuRaritry View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by PairO'DiceLost View Post
    <Snip>
    Where are my Like, Love, and Want to Have Your Manchildren (Totally Homo) buttons for this post?
    Won a cookie for this, won everything for this

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Benign deck of many things variant (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by PairO'Dice Lost View Post
    Combining my idea with those, you could have the suits set up as overarching offense/defense/utility/summons categories as I suggested and then give each number or face card a specific theme: 3 might be fooling sight (blindness/deafness for offense, mirror image for defense, invisibility for utility, and minor image for "summons"), 4 might be shapng fire (pyrotechnics for offense, fire trap for defense, continual flame for utility, and flaming sphere for summons), and so forth.



    That would tend to make it difficult to balance, since at lower levels it's too powerful to pull out 5th+ level spells and at higher levels the lower-level spells are likely to be a waste of a combat action. You might instead want to make Lesser, Standard, Greater versions of the deck with 0th-3rd, 3rd-6th, and 6th-9th level spells, respectively. Requires picking a lot more spells, but it would definitely be easier to balance and price.
    Good ideas all. Would you like to have a go at building a deck?

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Troll in the Playground
     
    ~Corvus~'s Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Perched in a tree
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Acid Arrow is awful. Consider Orb of Acid (SpC 150). Close range, single target d6 acid damage, still Conjuration and SICKEN. Now THAT is a worthwhile draw.

    I have alternative suggestions for a few of the hearts. italics is reordered; bold is changed.

    Ace of hearts: Magic Circle against Evil
    King of hearts: Cure Critical Wounds
    Queen of hearts: Magic Vestment
    Jack of hearts: Spiritual Weapon
    10 of hearts: Protection from Energy
    9 of hearts: Hold Person
    8 of hearts: Vigor (SpC 229; target gains Fast Healing to for 10+1/CL rounds (min5))
    7 of hearts: Sanctuary
    6 of hearts: Bless

    5 of hearts: Shield of faith
    4 of hearts: Lesser Vigor (SpC 229; target gains Fast Healing 1 for 10+1/CL rounds (min 1))
    3 of hearts: Guidance
    2 of hearts: Cure Minor Wounds
    Quote Originally Posted by Stegyre View Post
    But, but This is the internet! Everyone argues everything. You can't just let me think I'm right. That's not how things are done in this age.
    GM for Rokugan ItS | Shinomen | OOC
    GreedLing avatar by Ceika
    more

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by ~Corvus~ View Post
    Acid Arrow is awful. Consider Orb of Acid (SpC 150). Close range, single target d6 acid damage, still Conjuration and SICKEN. Now THAT is a worthwhile draw.

    I have alternative suggestions for a few of the hearts. italics is reordered; bold is changed.

    Ace of hearts: Magic Circle against Evil
    King of hearts: Cure Critical Wounds
    Queen of hearts: Magic Vestment
    Jack of hearts: Spiritual Weapon
    10 of hearts: Protection from Energy
    9 of hearts: Hold Person
    8 of hearts: Vigor (SpC 229; target gains Fast Healing to for 10+1/CL rounds (min5))
    7 of hearts: Sanctuary
    6 of hearts: Bless

    5 of hearts: Shield of faith
    4 of hearts: Lesser Vigor (SpC 229; target gains Fast Healing 1 for 10+1/CL rounds (min 1))
    3 of hearts: Guidance
    2 of hearts: Cure Minor Wounds
    Good suggestions all, although they break with how I built the original deck:
    1) By not being SRD only (although yes, vigor spells are absolutely better)
    2) By being the wrong level of spell by card. All the suits in the original deck went:
    Ace, King, Queen: Level 3
    Jack, ten, nine, eight: Level 2
    Seven, six, five, four: Level 1
    Three, two: Level 0

    Taking your point on acid arrow, however, what SRD spell would you suggest? Summon Monster II, maybe?
    Last edited by paddyfool; 2019-04-16 at 03:32 PM.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Troll in the Playground
     
    ~Corvus~'s Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Perched in a tree
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    RAW, the Cure line is atrocious per level. Hilariously bad. They're so bad, it's better for a cleric to invest in preventative spells rather than heal, or offensive spells or summon.

    Considering your guidelines, I'd recommend...

    Ace of hearts: Magic Circle against Evil
    King of Hearts: Displacement (A king should be hard to kill)
    Queen of Hearts: Geas, Lesser (A queen should have powerful influence)

    Jack of hearts: Spiritual Weapon
    10 of hearts: Bear's Endurance (+4 Con means +2 fort & +2 hp/level at hours duration; ages better than CMW)
    9 of hearts: Hold Person
    8 of hearts: Protection from Energy

    7 of hearts: Cure Light Wounds; cast this spell with your effective CL = your HD. (At least minimize the suck).
    6 of hearts: Restoration, Lesser (a potent and useful spell that provides other healing)
    5 of hearts: Shield of Faith
    4 of hearts: Sanctuary

    3 of hearts: Guidance
    2 of hearts: Cure Minor Wounds

    ---

    Now to spades! You've got fantastic level 2 picks except Acid Arrow. I'd replace with Alter Self and rearrange the list...except it's taken already. It's arguably the best 2nd-level spell, SRD or no. Not to worry. I see a fine choice:

    8 of spades: Knock (Although it's not damage, it's fabulous utility.)
    Last edited by ~Corvus~; 2019-04-16 at 04:17 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stegyre View Post
    But, but This is the internet! Everyone argues everything. You can't just let me think I'm right. That's not how things are done in this age.
    GM for Rokugan ItS | Shinomen | OOC
    GreedLing avatar by Ceika
    more

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2015

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    The interest of the cure line of spells is that at high levels you can at the end of the day spontaneously swap your low level slots for cure wounds to heal most of the lost hit points of the allies.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Troll in the Playground
     
    ~Corvus~'s Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Perched in a tree
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    I only make suggestions. Up to you.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stegyre View Post
    But, but This is the internet! Everyone argues everything. You can't just let me think I'm right. That's not how things are done in this age.
    GM for Rokugan ItS | Shinomen | OOC
    GreedLing avatar by Ceika
    more

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

    Join Date
    Jun 2012

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by ~Corvus~ View Post
    RAW, the Cure line is atrocious per level. Hilariously bad. They're so bad, it's better for a cleric to invest in preventative spells rather than heal, or offensive spells or summon.
    It's really the act of casting cure spells when action economy is limited and there are more valuable things to do with your turn that is bad; not so much the spells themselves. There are more effective ways to contribute to combat, but an extra heal to top yourself off between encounters is always nice to have available. It's knowing when to heal up and when not to that is problematic for most people.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    @Corvus,

    Thank you for the further suggestions! Minor quibbles:
    1) Displacement isn't in the SRD cleric list, although it is in the Bard and the Sor/Wiz list, so I may yet steal it for one of them if going for queen as defensive spell.
    2) Protection from energy is level 3. You're probably thinking of resist energy.
    3) Restoration may be a bit niche in what it fixes, especially for the immediate version of the deck.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaern View Post
    It's really the act of casting cure spells when action economy is limited and there are more valuable things to do with your turn that is bad; not so much the spells themselves. There are more effective ways to contribute to combat, but an extra heal to top yourself off between encounters is always nice to have available. It's knowing when to heal up and when not to that is problematic for most people.
    Sound point. In practical terms for this deck, that makes the cure line of spells a sound option for the eternal version but a usually poor option for the immediate version.

    I'm going to do a fresh version of the deck in a little while, generally going for spells that are as versatile as possible in application. EDIT: Actually, no. I have an exam coming up in two weeks and I intend to suspend this project for now. But I'd like to invite anyone who wishes to a submit a deck of their own (particularly the level 3 to 6 deck that was suggested earlier). Obviously, you don't have to stick within the same constraints as I was employing if you don't want to.
    Last edited by paddyfool; 2019-04-17 at 01:43 PM.

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Troll in the Playground
     
    ~Corvus~'s Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Perched in a tree
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by paddyfool View Post
    @Corvus,

    Thank you for the further suggestions! Minor quibbles:
    1) Displacement isn't in the SRD cleric list, although it is in the Bard and the Sor/Wiz list, so I may yet steal it for one of them if going for queen as defensive spell.
    FALSE!! Illusion-domain at 3rd level. Anyways, good luck there~
    Quote Originally Posted by Stegyre View Post
    But, but This is the internet! Everyone argues everything. You can't just let me think I'm right. That's not how things are done in this age.
    GM for Rokugan ItS | Shinomen | OOC
    GreedLing avatar by Ceika
    more

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    WolfInSheepsClothing

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Italy
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    pick 60 scrolls of your choice. you can't have more than 4 copies of each one. some of them must be lands to give you mana to cast the other scrolls. You start with 7 scrolls in your hand, and draw a new one each round. Both you and your opponent have 20 hit points...
    In memory of Evisceratus: he dreamed of a better world, but he lacked the class levels to make the dream come true.

    Ridiculous monsters you won't take seriously even as they disembowel you

    my take on the highly skilled professional: the specialized expert

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by King of Nowere View Post
    pick 60 scrolls of your choice. you can't have more than 4 copies of each one. some of them must be lands to give you mana to cast the other scrolls. You start with 7 scrolls in your hand, and draw a new one each round. Both you and your opponent have 20 hit points...
    Heh :-)

    On another note: pricing suggestion

    Eternal version: Half the cost of a level 2 eternal wand

    Immediate version: Half the cost of a level 2 standard wand

    Cursed version: Half the cost of the immediate version.

    These are easier to use than wands, of course, but a random effect is a big detriment.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Vancouver <-> Dublin
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    This is a quite charming idea, I like it a lot.

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by rferries View Post
    This is a quite charming idea, I like it a lot.
    Thank you! How would you see it being used? I'd mainly imagine the eternal version being used by a player with a non-casting character who'd like access to just a little bit of a spellcasting element. Especially if the player had never / rarely tried a spellcasting class and just wanted to try a range of the options that such a class brings. But I'm not sure how much use the immediate version would see in the hands of any non-lunatic player, and the cursed deck is probably no more than an NPC encounter.
    Last edited by paddyfool; 2019-04-21 at 08:38 AM.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Vancouver <-> Dublin
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by paddyfool View Post
    Thank you! How would you see it being used? I'd mainly imagine the eternal version being used by a player with a non-casting character who'd like access to just a little bit of a spellcasting element. Especially if the player had never / rarely tried a spellcasting class and just wanted to try a range of the options that such a class brings. But I'm not sure how much use the immediate version would see in the hands of any non-lunatic player, and the cursed deck is probably no more than an NPC encounter.
    Many of the spells are a bit too powerful at lower levels, so I'd rule something like you can't use particular cards until you've reached an appropriate character level. I also see the deck as appealing even to casters given how much versatility it provides. Perhaps an ongoing side-quest during a campaign,where characters discover more and more of the cards?

    The immediate and cursed versions are obviously less powerful, if a bit more fun. :)

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Quote Originally Posted by rferries View Post
    Many of the spells are a bit too powerful at lower levels, so I'd rule something like you can't use particular cards until you've reached an appropriate character level.
    Fair enough. How high do you see as being appropriate? Generally speaking, access to level 3 spells starts at level 5 (for, e.g., wizards, clerics and druids). Perhaps below this you could just take out the royal cards? Possibly also capping the deck at 2 to 7 below level 3...

    I also see the deck as appealing even to casters given how much versatility it provides.
    True, everyone likes more spells. Even when it's just one random option per day.

    Perhaps an ongoing side-quest during a campaign,where characters discover more and more of the cards?
    That could work.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

    Join Date
    Jun 2012

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Perhaps require that the user have a number of hit dice equal to the caster level of the particular spell card; or have the spell cast at a caster level equal to the user's hit dice, which may potentially result in the spell fizzling if a wizard/cleric/etc would be unable to cast the spell at the same caster level. But the latter would also make them rather powerful as an item that replicates spells, as they generally tend not to scale with the user.

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    I'm now thinking there should be room for a fourth variant - similar mechanics to the eternal one in how it allows you to choose when to cast, but exhaustible:

    Deck of scrolls variant: Draw a card as a half action, it then functions as a scroll of the corresponding spell that only you can cast (casting automatically succeeds). Discard the card once the spell is cast. No further cards drawn will have any effect until that spell is cast. At any point, you may skim through the deck as a full round action to see what spells remain, just as long as you shuffle afterwards.

    It has the possibility of a subquest where someone else draws a card from the deck, and until the player induces them to cast the spell it grants, the deck is useless to them.

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Daemon

    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    I don't like the idea of class-based suits because of overlap and an unclear distinction of spell origins.

    If I did a Deck of Spells then I would base it by school or type.

    Hearts: Enchantments, mind-control
    Diamonds: Abjuration, defenses
    Spades: Transmutation, buff magic
    Clubs: Evocation, attack spells

    However, I'd also try to stay true to the Tarot style of the Deck of Many Things. In that sense, the Major Arcana should be major spells. Likewise, the royalty cards should be stronger than the numerical ones. They would also carry different suit names: Swords, Cups, Wands, and Coins. Incidentally, these tarot suits also bear a striking resemblance to the early four classes -- fighting man, cleric, magic-user, thief. So another way to go about it is having Swords be offensive magic, Cups be divine magic, Wands be arcane magic, and Coins be social magic.

    Theme is just as important as mechanics when it comes to designing items. When players see your work and notice the minor details that make an item consistent with logic, they will appreciate its authenticity more.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    London, UK

    Default Re: Deck of spells (3.5)

    Heh - I just read this article and became reminded of my idea: https://keithburgun.net/three-types-...-one-good-one/

    Going by the definitions used in that article, in the core form, this would definitely be input randomness. But probably variable rather than uniform... unless you didn't return cards to the draw deck until you'd run through said deck. Not sure that that would add enough to be worth the clunky mechanic, though.

Posting Permissions

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