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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Question Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Howdy Playground

    Bit of background before i get into the meat of the question (TLDR at the bottom).
    I play an Eladrin fighter 1/Abjurer wizard 13 and recently me and my mates faced off against a sort of demigod of death, using a scythe and presumably some sort of necromancy spells. I write "presumably" cause i managed to counterspell every single one of his spells, mind you the encounter was still very challenging due to some very scary scythe strikes. But i feel like using counterspell is sorta anti-fun as it turns encounters with spellcasters into slugfests, but at the same time it is one of my best spells as an abjurer and a large part of the subclass. Therefore i wanted to ask for suggestions as to how i could tweak counterspell so it becomes more of a dynamic spell or atleast not a no-brainer.

    I have considered a couple of tweaks myself so far

    1. Turning into a recharge ability like breath weapons and similiars, this means that i wont have to up all the time but the RNG will probably get annoying.
    2. Make it a x per rest kind of mechanic to prevent me from just saving my spell slots for it but still allows me to bring it out at clutch times.
    3. Require some sort of setup, like readying a counterspell takes me concentration until i release it or similiar.

    Any and all feedback is welcome.
    (By the by this is a me problem, i have talked to my DM and he dosen't mind it but i still feel like i want to explore the options.)

    TLDR:Blue player realises that saying no to stuff makes for a boring game and wants to tweak counterspell.

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    Orc in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    I sort of like Counterspell because it represents a 'higher' level of magical combat where mages vie their magical power and skill against each other. Though it doesn't really play out like that much in 5e. Your ideas are a good starting point for a discussion.

    The last time my high level wizard got into a fight with a god, I was able to use my reaction for counterspell but the god got Legendary spell casting actions, so I wasn't able to shut them down.

    I personally would like Counterspell to take the original spell caster's ability (be it casting level, attribute level, save bonus and/or other special factors) into account beyond just the base of spell level. After all, Counterspell is cast at the CASTER and not the spell.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Envy2222 View Post
    Howdy Playground

    TLDR:Blue player realises that saying no to stuff makes for a boring game and wants to tweak counterspell.
    I've had two thoughts about what might make it more interesting:

    1. Make it so that you must know/recognize the spell you're trying to counterspell. That is, make a recognition Int check using Arcana skill (or possibly Religion?), to see if you know what the spell is and how to counter it. If you don't know what the other caster is doing, you don't know what to do to counter it. Obviously, your DM would have to allow this use of the Int check combined with the actual Counterspell, since they both apparently technically count as a reaction.

    2. Make every counterspell use an ability check roll. Possibly a DC 10 + spell slot level being countered - your spell slot level?
    Last edited by Guy Lombard-O; 2019-05-20 at 10:19 AM.

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    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Here's how I'd fix it

    Make it a check like dispel magic

    Or make it a save like arcane trickster feature

    Making it a check would then allow Abjuration wizard to have proficiency

    Or making it save would allow Abjuration wizard to either have "expertise" or cause disadvantage

    (Expertise as in 8+pro+pro+int. Considering most casters are proficient in saves they use for spell I don't think itd be to op.)

    Another option is counterspell causing a concentration check or lose spell. Dc is spell save



    I would personally have counterspell just be a 4th level spell that is essentially worded like dispel magic but as a reaction and has to be used while enemy casts rather than on pre existing spell

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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Counterspell is something I'm fairly unhappy with.

    Most spells worth Counterspelling costs an Action. Counterspell costs a Reaction. A Reaction is worth less than an Action, and so Counterspell is more efficient in terms of action economy. Not only that, but Counterspell is a guaranteed counter against a spell of equal or lesser value, and a gamble if it's used against a spell of higher value.

    So in terms of spell slot value, it is = or > the target spell.
    In terms of action economy, it is > the target spell.

    In almost every possible circumstance, Counterspelling a spell is more efficient than almost any other spell you could cast.

    And if we can't hit the action economy (it'd be hard to make it cost more than a Reaction), then we really need to hit the spell slot economy hard. However, not so hard that Counterspell becomes a bad pick. We want it to be a valid pick, a chosen pick, not a guaranteed pick.

    To keep things simple, I just recommend making Counterspell less guaranteed, dependent on your spellcasting ability but not skills (so that something like Arcana proficiency isn't needed, for the sake of something like Redemption Paladins). There's already a "randomness" clause to Counterspell (when you cast it as a lower level spell against the target), so I suggest we just expand on that.

    Something like:

    You attempt to interrupt a creature that you can see casting a spell. Make a check using your spellcasting ability against a DC equal to 10 + the target spell's level. On a success, the target spell is interrupted and lost.
    If the level of Counterspell is equal or higher than the target spell, you make this check with Advantage.


    This ensures scaling, while increasing the overall risk of Counterspell. Counterspell will also have value being at a lower level spell slot, to make a cheap attempt to counter a spell.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-20 at 10:59 AM.
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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    WolfInSheepsClothing

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    I'm not so sure how good an idea this is. This situation to me seems more of a case of action economy doing it's thing. What if there were a couple more enemy casters? Shouldn't an Abjurer be able to do it's thing? There is only one reaction per round afterall.

    There are enough NPC play arounds to Counterspell alredy: holding a spell out of vision, visual impairment of the caster, bait-feints (casting lower level spells to bait out Counterspell), countering the counterspell, ambushes, legendary action casting, etc.

    If the DM wants the spells to absolutely be cast, they can just make it happen. You've only countered that wich they designed for you to. And likely on purpose so you can feel good about it. No need to guilt trip yourself.

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    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Sounds to me like the DM might not have planned for that to happen. Plenty of spells have a decent range to them and counterspell is 60ft.

    It would be easy for the enemy caster just to stay out of range of the wizard who wants to counterspell all of their stuff.
    Last edited by Thrasher92; 2019-05-20 at 10:53 AM.

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    Counterspell is something I'm fairly unhappy with.

    Most spells worth Counterspelling costs an Action. Counterspell costs a Reaction. A Reaction is worth less than an Action, and so Counterspell is more efficient in terms of action economy. Not only that, but Counterspell is a guaranteed counter against a spell of equal or lesser value, and a gamble if it's used against a spell of higher value.

    So in terms of spell slot value, it is = or > the target spell.
    In terms of action economy, it is > the target spell.

    In almost every possible circumstance, Counterspelling a spell is more efficient than almost any other spell you could cast.

    And if we can't hit the action economy (it'd be hard to make it cost more than a Reaction), then we really need to hit the spell slot economy hard. However, not so hard that Counterspell becomes a bad pick. We want it to be a valid pick, a chosen pick, not a guaranteed pick.

    To keep things simple, I just recommend making Counterspell less guaranteed, dependent on your spellcasting ability but not skills (so that something like Arcana proficiency isn't needed, for the sake of something like Redemption Paladins). There's already a "randomness" clause to Counterspell (when you cast it as a lower level spell against the target), so I suggest we just expand on that.

    Something like:

    You attempt to interrupt a creature that you can see casting a spell. Make a check using your spellcasting ability against a DC equal to 10 + the target spell's level. On a success, the target spell is interrupted and lost.
    If the level of Counterspell is equal or higher than the target spell, you make this check with Advantage.


    This ensures scaling, while increasing the overall risk of Counterspell. Counterspell will also have value being at a lower level spell slot, to make a cheap attempt to counter a spell.
    I just usually have flunkies on hand to counterspell the counterspell. :P

    Honestly I would just make it automatic only if the counterspell is of a higher level. That way, you're burning a fourth level slot to counter a third level slot, and against a high-level spellcaster opponent, you're going to run out of resources fast, and by the time you're actually able to counterspell what they're doing, you're likely on like the third round of combat.
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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by strangebloke View Post
    I just usually have flunkies on hand to counterspell the counterspell. :P
    I hear people using this solution a lot, but that always seemed like a bad solution to a bad problem. Adding more casters, to deal with a single kind of spell that both sides are using, doesn't really seem balanced.

    Otherwise, that just encourages players to just have every caster to start packing as much Counterspell as possible. Because, well, it works for the bad guys, right?
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    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    You attempt to interrupt a creature that you can see casting a spell. Make a check using your spellcasting ability against a DC equal to 10 + the target spell's level. On a success, the target spell is interrupted and lost.
    If the level of Counterspell is equal or higher than the target spell, you make this check with Advantage.


    This ensures scaling, while increasing the overall risk of Counterspell. Counterspell will also have value being at a lower level spell slot, to make a cheap attempt to counter a spell.
    I think I'll try this for my games.
    Would you give the Abjurer any bonuses?
    Or, would that be too complicated?

    For the most part, I simply allow an Arcana/Nature/Religion check to recognize a spell being cast.

    Shinagines with Deception vs Insight and/or Perception vs Slight of Hand are allowed.
    My Knowledge, Understanding, and Opinion on things can be changed

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    Quote Originally Posted by karellink View Post
    2019-05-19 2:04 pm
    as a great dragon you must have the correct wisdom for these kind of shenanigans.

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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    I think I'll try this for my games.
    Would you give the Abjurer any bonuses?
    Or, would that be too complicated?

    For the most part, I simply allow an Arcana/Nature/Religion check to recognize a spell being cast.

    Shinagines with Deception vs Insight and/or Perception vs Slight of Hand are allowed.
    I'd say that it'd be more complicated to have the Abjurer not gain bonuses, especially considering we're talking about the archetype that's designed around counterspells and wards.

    Denying that is like denying an Evoker the benefits to their Fireball spell.

    To determine the spell itself, you could roll against the player's passive Arcana stat. If the target succeeded, the target can choose to have the spell appear any way they want (spell level, school), otherwise reveal the correct information to the player. Not only does this speed up the game (so you determine whether the enemy is proficient in faking spells or not), but this also means that the player doesn't inherently know whether his Counterspell is worthwhile or not. If the player receives the information about the target spell, they can choose to not cast Counterspell, but they've still spent their Reaction.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-20 at 11:44 AM.
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    Counterspell is something I'm fairly unhappy with.

    Most spells worth Counterspelling costs an Action. Counterspell costs a Reaction. A Reaction is worth less than an Action, and so Counterspell is more efficient in terms of action economy. Not only that, but Counterspell is a guaranteed counter against a spell of equal or lesser value, and a gamble if it's used against a spell of higher value.

    So in terms of spell slot value, it is = or > the target spell.
    In terms of action economy, it is > the target spell.

    In almost every possible circumstance, Counterspelling a spell is more efficient than almost any other spell you could cast.

    And if we can't hit the action economy (it'd be hard to make it cost more than a Reaction), then we really need to hit the spell slot economy hard. However, not so hard that Counterspell becomes a bad pick. We want it to be a valid pick, a chosen pick, not a guaranteed pick.

    To keep things simple, I just recommend making Counterspell less guaranteed, dependent on your spellcasting ability but not skills (so that something like Arcana proficiency isn't needed, for the sake of something like Redemption Paladins). There's already a "randomness" clause to Counterspell (when you cast it as a lower level spell against the target), so I suggest we just expand on that.

    Something like:

    You attempt to interrupt a creature that you can see casting a spell. Make a check using your spellcasting ability against a DC equal to 10 + the target spell's level. On a success, the target spell is interrupted and lost.
    If the level of Counterspell is equal or higher than the target spell, you make this check with Advantage.


    This ensures scaling, while increasing the overall risk of Counterspell. Counterspell will also have value being at a lower level spell slot, to make a cheap attempt to counter a spell.

    If you want to nerf counterspell a little,

    Simply require that you have a Held Action that you must spend in addition to your reaction in order to counterspell.

    So the caster should have to Hold their Action until after the turn of the bad guy, or if multiple bad guys - all of them. Then, when the bad guy casts, the caster can use their Held Action + their Reaction to cast counterspell.

    If they choose not to counterspell anything, then they took a small penalty in dropping in the initiative order in order to be prepared to do it.
    Last edited by Tallytrev813; 2019-05-20 at 12:01 PM.

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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tallytrev813 View Post
    If you want to nerf counterspell a little,

    Simply require that you have a Held Action that you must spend in addition to your reaction in order to counterspell.

    So the caster should have to Hold their Action until after the turn of the bad guy, or if multiple bad guys - all of them. Then, when the bad guy casts, the caster can use their Held Action + their Reaction to cast counterspell.

    If they choose not to counterspell anything, then they took a small penalty in dropping in the initiative order in order to be prepared to do it.
    That's not what the Ready Action does, nor is it balanced. What you're describing is costing an Action AND a Reaction, to spend the same value in Spell Slots. That'd make Counterspell strictly worse than duplicating the target spell.

    Not only that, but Holding an Action does nothing to initiative. It's not like prior editions, where you could do that. In 5e, Holding your Action means you lose your Action, to do an Action-related event with your Reaction trigger. If the trigger occurs, and you didn't do anything, you keep your initiative and you effectively lose your entire turn.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-20 at 12:05 PM.
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    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes while maintaining balance with default options.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    That's not what the Ready Action does, nor is it balanced. What you're describing is costing an Action AND a Reaction, to spend the same value in Spell Slots. That'd make Counterspell strictly worse than duplicating the target spell.

    Not only that, but Holding an Action does nothing to initiative. It's not like prior editions, where you could do that. In 5e, Holding your Action means you lose your Action, to do an Action-related event with your Reaction trigger. If the trigger occurs, and you didn't do anything, you keep your initiative and you effectively lose your entire turn.
    Oh, really?
    My old DM had us using it wrong. We had the option to simply "Hold our action until after Such and Such's turn", then return to our normal initiative next round.

    Well that throws a wrench in my idea.

    Would it be possible to make counterspell such that you "Ready the action" and if, at the end of the round, you did not use your readied action you may take an action at that point - then return to regular initiative next round - as a sort of Counterspell specific text?

    Also, yes - i think if youre fighting a boss, for example, using your Action + Reaction to cancel their Action is worth it. Its just a way to nerf it so its not AMAZING but still useful.
    Last edited by Tallytrev813; 2019-05-20 at 12:12 PM.

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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tallytrev813 View Post
    Oh, really?
    My old DM had us using it wrong. We had the option to simply "Hold our action until after Such and Such's turn", then return to our normal initiative next round.

    Well that throws a wrench in my idea.

    Would it be possible to make counterspell such that you "Ready the action" and if, at the end of the round, you did not use your readied action you may take an action at that point - then return to regular initiative next round - as a sort of Counterspell specific text?

    Also, yes - i think if youre fighting a boss, for example, using your Action + Reaction to cancel their Action is worth it. Its just a way to nerf it so its not AMAZING but still useful.
    The problem with that is that bosses have a workaround to the whole Action Economy problem, by having Legendary Actions and Lair Actions. So while counterspelling a mage Mook cost both of you an Action (and cost you your Reaction), you might have cost the Boss 1/4 of his round's contribution by losing most of yours.
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    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

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    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    You attempt to interrupt a creature that you can see casting a spell. Make a check using your spellcasting ability against a DC equal to 10 + the target spell's level. On a success, the target spell is interrupted and lost. If the level of Counterspell is equal or higher than the target spell, you make this check with Advantage.
    ďThe Abjurer adds Proficiency to the Counterspell check.Ē

    So, my question is: if the foe manages to trick the Player, does the Counterspell fail; since they tried to negate the wrong effect?
    This happening makes sense to me.

    ******
    I don't really see any need to nerf Counterspell.

    Spellcasters with Counterspell don't have a lot of Reaction casting time spells (with only Shield and Hellish Rebuke all that I can recall at the moment) to really worry too much about which one to use.

    Choosing what Spell Slot Level to sacrifice is as much of a risk on the Player's part as casting it is.
    My Knowledge, Understanding, and Opinion on things can be changed

    Without a Playtest Group - I'm Forever Stuck in the White Room.

    I am learning valuable things, here. So thanks, everyone!

    I just hope that I can remember to actually try and use some of this stuff In Game.

    Quote Originally Posted by karellink View Post
    2019-05-19 2:04 pm
    as a great dragon you must have the correct wisdom for these kind of shenanigans.

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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    ďThe Abjurer adds Proficiency to the Counterspell check.Ē

    So, my question is: if the foe manages to trick the Player, does the Counterspell fail; since they tried to negate the wrong effect?
    This happening makes sense to me.

    Not the way I'd intend it. I'd much rather have someone risk their chances of overspending Counterspell rather than being given a flat-out No. For example, someone casts Fireball, but manages to lie and say it's a level 5 casting of it. Someone casts Counterspell, really wants to avoid a level 5 Fireball, and so spends a level 5 spell slot to compensate. That way, the player spends a level 5 spell slot to counter a level 3 spell, rather than a player spending a level 5 spell slot and getting hit with Cone of Cold as their reward.

    When a player spends a massive resource, they should gain some kind of reward. Even if that reward wasn't as big of a reward that they were hoping, or if that reward was lost by just bad luck, it's much better than being straight up being punished for taking a risk.

    We should be rewarding players for taking risks, not punishing them. Otherwise, we're just incentivizing players to play the game in the most boring way possible.

    ---------

    On the initial line, the Abjurer already adds their proficiency to Counterspell checks. I didn't change the wording all too much, only expanded on the check portion a little bit.

    --------

    There are a few class-specific means of using their reaction. Diviners have Portent, GOO Warlocks have their psychic shield. But the fact that there's open-endedness to Reactions simply makes Counterspell stronger, not weaker. Auto-picks aren't balanced, and the fact that there are so few reaction-based spells means that Counterspell needs to be put under more scrutiny, not less.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-20 at 12:48 PM.
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    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Envy2222 View Post
    I play an Eladrin fighter 1/Abjurer wizard 13 and recently me and my mates faced off against a sort of demigod of death, using a scythe and presumably some sort of necromancy spells. I write "presumably" cause i managed to counterspell every single one of his spells, mind you the encounter was still very challenging due to some very scary scythe strikes. But i feel like using counterspell is sorta anti-fun as it turns encounters with spellcasters into slugfests, but at the same time it is one of my best spells as an abjurer and a large part of the subclass. Therefore i wanted to ask for suggestions as to how i could tweak counterspell so it becomes more of a dynamic spell or atleast not a no-brainer.
    Was your DM aware that Death could have been counterspelling your castings of counterspell the whole time?


    Powers &8^]
    Last edited by LtPowers; 2019-05-20 at 12:59 PM.

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    I hear people using this solution a lot, but that always seemed like a bad solution to a bad problem. Adding more casters, to deal with a single kind of spell that both sides are using, doesn't really seem balanced.

    Otherwise, that just encourages players to just have every caster to start packing as much Counterspell as possible. Because, well, it works for the bad guys, right?
    Should've used blue text.

    But yeah, there is one thing to say in favor of how counterspell is written, which is that spell slots are inherently more precious for PCs than for enemies. If you're going on a dungeon raid to kill Melthusias the Lich, odds are that when you show up to the fight, Melthusias will have most of his spell slots available, whereas the party here probably had to use a bunch of slots just to get here. Plane shift to get to the demi-plane, healing to get party members back in the fight, etc. etc.

    Plus, Cr-appropriate caster-type monsters tend to have higher-level slots available in the first place. An archmage is CR 12 but has 9th level slots.

    So, taken together, I'd say that the 3rd level slot of a PC is much more expensive than the 3rd level slot of an NPC. If you fight three CR-appropriate casters in a day, counterspelling at every oppounity is likely to be effective, but by the third fight you'll likely be unable to do it efficiently (without chance of failure) anymore if you can do it at all.

    To use terminology from card games, Counterspell is a massive tempo swing, but bad value against an NPC.

    Giving counterspell to the bad guys is, for this reason nasty. My earlier (non-serious) line about a caster minions with counterspell was just this. If you ever want to TPK a party, send a few waves of hobgoblins with counterspell support minions.
    Last edited by strangebloke; 2019-05-20 at 01:26 PM.
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  20. - Top - End - #20
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    You definitely don't want to make it cost a readied action or the like. Counterspelling has always been an option in the game, since the earliest editions... at least in principle. But before 5th edition, it almost never got used, because you had to ready an action to use it, and that meant that if your enemy figured out what you were doing and didn't cast a spell, you were just wasting actions (and possibly spell slots) for no purpose.

    On the other hand, in earlier editions, you could disrupt a spell by damaging the caster while they were casting, and that often did work out OK (it might still cost a readied action, but with the right trigger, the action wouldn't be wasted). That's not an option any more, so now the only way to stop a spell as it's being cast is Counterspell. So the balance hasn't actually shifted much, and is probably a bit tougher now, overall.
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    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    While I'm not sure how to do this practically, I would rather counterspell were more of a battle of magical skill than a "cast spell, get effect". Or at least the DC could be affected by more than just the spell level when you have to roll. At least with one on one situations the action economy works out okay, but with more characters it tips strongly in favor of the numbers. As it is, four 5th level wizards have a decent chance of locking down an archmage for a couple rounds at least, which feels kind of wrong to me. Turning it into an opposed check would be interesting, but could easily make counterspell too expensive for its chance of success.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Dalebert's Avatar

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Counterspell kind of seems like the anti-fun spell sometimes. NPCs have full slots at the start of an encounter while PCs have to ration theirs out. In a game with multiple NPC casters, a PC can blow tons of slots just CSing and not have much left to do fun cool things. One of my most hated AL modules was just packed with casters and I felt so bad for our poor wizard who didn't get to do hardly anything but try, and often fail, to stop some of the horrible spells coming our way.
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  23. - Top - End - #23
    Troll in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    I think counterspell on NPCs is fine, but only if used with care.

    I tend to have it as a very common spell. I think it breaks immersion in a world if you have an NPC based on a class that can have counterspell, they are combat focused and forgot to prepare it.

    That said, there are plenty of ways to avoid counterspell and I feel you have to enable casters to use these: provide cover, provide avenues of attack further than 60ft, don't give enemies truesight to 60ft or more... as long as you ensure there is some way to cast spells without them being countered then I think it is fair. It isn't reasonable to expect all enemies to chose to be defenceless against your attacks - it would be like expecting enemies to forget to put their armour on because you discovered the great weapon master feat.


    On PCs... counterspell might not be good for the game. My observation is that when people run out of resources they push to rest. Counterspell is a way for wizards to run out of resources ahead of the clerics and druids (and other classes that can keep going at 70+% effectiveness without resources). Then you either get a party that doesn't rest with a sad wizard or the party does rest more frequently and the relative power of the PCs is determined by who can burn through more slots more quickly.

    Despite this it is not a spell I am tempted to fiddle with as I think the risks are pretty high. If I were to do so I would maybe strip it but give abjuration wizards a short range unreliable counterspell effect at will or at least a good number of times per day. An option that doesn't use up the spell slots can keep the desires for resting in line with the rest of the party and keep the excitement of not knowing that a given effect will not happen.

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    1) Counterspell isn't automatic against spells greater than 3rd level unless upcast (though the Abjurer does get a bonus).

    2) NPC can counterspell the counterspell and go back to casting their original spell. It is up to the DM to decide whether the NPC would have counterspell prepared or not.

    3) In many cases, part of the strategy can be to force a caster to use their reaction on shield or something else in order to prevent them from casting counterspell.

    4) Neither players nor NPCs should know what spell is being cast at the point in time when they have to decide whether to counterspell it or not. This makes using counterspell a more difficult decision.

    5) Counterspell only works against spells and has no effect on spell-like effects. This is obvious but some of the special abilities of monsters are very similar to spells in effect but they can't be counterspelled because they aren't spells.

    6) In battles with multiple casters, counterspell battles are a thing. They also very quickly consume both PC and NPC spell resources.

    Anyway, I haven't noticed any great balance issue that needs addressing. There are some fights where counterspell turns out to be useful if not essential and others where it doesn't play a bit role. If you have two casters facing off and both have counterspell then using counterspell becomes a resource tax.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Daemon

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    Default Re: Changing the counterspell..spell.

    Warhammer 40k has an interesting form of countering. You roll a d6 and on a 6 you negate the spell. Some guys with special gear do it on a 5 or 6. But then they changed it to be charge counter based. So every 6 negates a single charge and some guys deny on a 3+. You get charges based on the total wizard levels in the army and players attempting to cast need to succeed on their psychic test. Which old style was a number of success dice (4+ roll counts as success) and new style is a successful total number reached with your dice (which each denial pulls away from).

    Translating all of that into 5e, maybe you can turn it into a standard ability all Wizards have that is a reaction but it's hard to pull off. I'm not even going to attempt the probability chart though so I'm basically suggesting you roll fixed dice based on the level of the spell slot you're using or your wizard level or whatever you think is mathematically appropriate and then attempt to gain enough success to beat the magic.

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