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  1. - Top - End - #31
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    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    As always, I like a good Debate, and see Sig.
    Be convincing, and you can change my Opinion.
    No offense is ever intended.

    @Ignimortis:
    Well, I suppose that is why I see so many Retro-clones and E6-10 games. Usually without Magical Items.

    (I guess if that's what you want, fine.
    Just don't expect (me) to change (my) game style to match that.
    I wish you the best of luck finding a group for that)

    If being limited to using magic to only solving four problems at most a day isn't enough of a limit - where non-casters have no limits to their Abilities, I can only ask "why keep playing D&D?"

    Sure, feather fall is better than a Monk's Slow fall, but the caster can only do that a few times a day. And there is no limit on how often the Monk can do that trick. It doesn't even require Ki to use.

    *******
    Now, if your wanting some help on making a D&D World that's a little more difficult for Casters to break, I'm willing to give that a try.
    If so, make a thread in the World Building forum and either Post a link or PM me.

    And why should a level 20 rogue even need a cloak of invisibility? A level 20 rogue should be able to hide in bright daylight in plain sight, steal luck or souls, etc.
    That's totally possible in Epic gaming.
    Boons can give whatever the DM wants.

    Um, how would you incorporate that into the Rogue class? Arcane Trickster does most of that.

    However, I loved the Hide in Plane Sight from 3x Shadowdancer (I kinda don't like them making it a Monk) and didn't even mind the requirement of needing to be within 10 feet of a shadow.
    As a Rogue Subclass, I could even accept the loss of a Shadow Companion.

    Or just added as an Ability to the Base Rogue Class at 16th level?

    *****
    Spells access based on Domain is essentially playing "Deity May I". Or, worse, Pantheon Politics. Especially if the Cleric has to ask for a spell from another Deity in the same Pantheon.

    This is actually the way Greek Deities (and to a lesser degree, Norse Deities) are supposed to work; which is rarely used, much less enforced.

    All Resurrection spells had to be approved by Hades (even Zues has to ask), sooo…. What kind of Deal are you willing to make?

    Are you a Viking in the Middle of Winter?
    Better make the correct sacrifice and pay homage to Loki (even if you hate him), just to keep your fire lit.

    But, hey, that's just Fluff
    - right?

    *****

    @Morty:
    Casters Being Binary is actually meant to be a real limit. Spells are not like skills. They do one thing, and it either works, or not.

    All things you listed are situations where the Player is as Challenged as the Character. Knowing how to use/do stuff without magic can be just as fun as Nuking the Hobgoblin Army.

    @Kardwill
    Then your GM was either giving away too many Magical Items, or not including more situations where they don't instantly solve the problems presented: and your non-magical skills did.

    *****

    See my Clash of the Classes in Ancient Realms.

    I usually run a High Magic Living World, so I do have ways to deal with the various Classes, even into Epic Levels. I'm not going to say that I can't be surprised, though.

    Although I haven't had a Group get past 12th level, yet….

    Maybe the 10th level PCs in Hunting Xanathar will get past that?
    Last edited by Great Dragon; 2019-07-31 at 11:05 AM.
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  2. - Top - End - #32
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    @Morty:
    Casters Being Binary is actually meant to be a real limit. Spells are not like skills. They do one thing, and it either works, or not.

    All things listed are situations where the Player is as Challenged as the Character. Knowing how to use/do stuff without magic can be just as fun as Nuking the Hobgoblin Army.
    Yes, and it's a bad limit that doesn't work. As I have explained. It's a root cause of many of the problems people debate about endlessly.
    Last edited by Morty; 2019-07-31 at 11:05 AM.
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  3. - Top - End - #33
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    Yes, and it's a bad limit that doesn't work. As I have explained. It's a root cause of many of the problems people debate about endlessly.
    Um ... I'm not sure what you actually want.

    If even a super limited Specization Sorcerer is still too powerful for you.

    Either you want magic to suck to the point no one ever wants to play a caster
    Or
    absolutely no magic at all.
    Which isn't D&D anymore.

    But, I will admit that I'm most likely not going to really "solve" this problem, and so will politely bow out.

    I will still read the thread, since there are interesting posts, and I'll respond to anyone posting to me.
    My Knowledge, Understanding, and Opinion on things can be changed
    No offense is intended by anything I post.
    *Limited Playtest Group - I'm mostly Stuck in the White Room.
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  4. - Top - End - #34
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    IDK, 5e seems a lot more "Balanced" than all the other versions of D&D.
    Did we all forget about 4e just because an edition that ressurected the sacred cows came out?

    You know, the edition made with balance as an explicit goal, and that was actually balanced.

    As I mentioned somewhere: Fewer Spell Slots per Spell Level, plus breaking up Known Spells between all Spell Levels (or a set value for maximum): plus Concentration on a lot of really useful/powerful spells.
    Concentration is a good mechanic, but I still find wizards are casting too many spells (or not enough, it varies based on circumstances, I'll try to explain better).

    Quote Originally Posted by Ignimortis View Post
    I find that 5e balanced the casters in the worst of two possible ways, causing them to be less fun, but not exactly balanced still.

    Wizard as a class is cancerous to the game. No game with magic should have a type of mage who gets access to 80% of magic in the game while progressing at the same rate as other major spellcasters.
    I agree and disagree. I agree that the D&D wizard is problematic, but a character with theoretical access to such a broad range of spells isn't a problem. The problem is that the wizard gets practical access to the largest variety of magic in the game.

    If the Sorcerer or Bard was pulling from the wizard list I'd have no problem. They have a small enough number of Spells Known that they will never have access to the entire list. They have theoretical access to 80% of the magic, but practical access to, say, 5%.

    On the other hand, I feel like the smaller number of spell slots did work for one class: the Warlock. Warlocks are, for ten levels, kept incredibly lean on the spell slots but get them back relatively easily, while at the same time getting a bunch of passive or at-will abilities to fill in the gaps between occasional spells.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    Spell slots don't work as a limiting mechanics and wouldn't even if spells themselves weren't so strong. They're entirely reliant on the GM being willing and able to enforce a number of "encounters" every day. This gets harder as you leave a traditional dungeon crawl. Furthermore, if casters have their per-day spells and non-casters don't, the whole party still operates on the casters' schedule. Which only contributes to the feeling that casters are the more important party members.

    Furthermore, casters being screwed once they run out of spells or components is not a good thing. It only enforces a binary - either they do have the right spell and solve a problem/encounter handily or they don't and they're neutralized. Same thing happens with anti-magic fields, zones and whatnot.
    I think we could come up with much more fun ways to limit spellcasters.

    Having them roll to gather energy before they cast a spell. During slower periods they don't have to worry, but when things get tense you might not have the time to gather the energy.

    Or having a small and quickly recharging mana pool. We're limiting how much magic can be cast in a row, but we're not completely cutting mages out for long periods.

    Or maybe we could stop this idea that using magic means you have no mundane skills. Heck, let's have wizards picking up swords and bows because their magic isn't combat focused, or having the mundane skills that synergise with the buff spells they learnt.

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    Yeah, that's pretty much where I stand on the matter, and where most people I've gamed with have stood on it. Running into the contingents of players online who either say "INT is the spellcasting stat for Wizards, and tells you nothing else about your character beyond the mechanical effects" or "don't tell me how to play my character!" was a bit of a shock to me. Of course, on the latter, my response is an unyielding "I'm not telling you how to play your character -- you told yourself how to play your character when you gave him a 6 INT."
    I've come to the realisation that people don't want to play a stupid character, but don't want to play a 'suboptimal' character. So they dump INT and claim it's just the wizardy casting stat.

    One of my favourite things to do there is run a high tech game, ideally in GURPS (although something like the new edition of Alternity works wonders). Suddenly IQ-based skills aren't just something you can dump because they're knowledges, if you want to interact with technology at all you'll want a high IQ. Which is a real problem when you're stuck in a nuclear reactor that failed to SCRAM and you need to find some way to shut it down while keeping the alien baddie restrained, but nobody put any points into Nuclear Physics or Reactor Engineering*.

    It's like the player who takes a ton of mental drawbacks and compulsions and is annoyed when they come up in play. Look, you got more CP for playing a lower INT character, if you've decided you don't want to we can lower some of your other stats, or you can spend XP paying off that point debt

    There's a reason my characters tend to be pretty heavy on the physical disads. It can be hard to know how much a gambling compulsion should come up in game, a missing hand is much easier to adjudicate (you can't perform actions that require that hand).

    * Bit of an extreme example, but 'the reactor failed to shut down and is going to blow' did come up once.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
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    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

  5. - Top - End - #35
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    Yeah, that's pretty much where I stand on the matter, and where most people I've gamed with have stood on it. Running into the contingents of players online who either say "INT is the spellcasting stat for Wizards, and tells you nothing else about your character beyond the mechanical effects" or "don't tell me how to play my character!" was a bit of a shock to me. Of course, on the latter, my response is an unyielding "I'm not telling you how to play your character -- you told yourself how to play your character when you gave him a 6 INT."
    I want to point out that you are talking about a small subset of people online who feel that way. Regardless, you know how verisimilitude is kind of a passion-project/#1 priority for you? There are a lot of people for whom autonomy over their character is something that they feel equally as passionate about. Something like, 'The DM gets to set up the world, the dice decide how things end up, my character can conceivably be placed in an absolutely unwinnable position, but you do not get to tell me what decisions they make (unless they are mind-controlled or something, which had better follow some very well-defined rules).' I can understand having a strong position on either.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    Spell slots don't work as a limiting mechanic and wouldn't even if spells themselves weren't so strong. They're entirely reliant on the GM being willing and able to enforce a number of "encounters" every day. This gets harder as you leave a traditional dungeon crawl. Furthermore, if casters have their per-day spells and non-casters don't, the whole party still operates on the casters' schedule. Which only contributes to the feeling that casters are the more important party members.
    I am going to go to bat for OSR gaming (which I sometimes, but don't always, favor). Many of us who started with TSR-era D&D absolutely did get the system to work. Mind you, it took some constraint on playstyle -- it does, in fact, get harder as you leave traditional dungeon crawling, plus hexcrawling after ~level 3 (when it actually starts to really suck to be a magic user), plus the keep & castle portion (where 'can summon meteors' and 'can summon armies' tends to be a toss-up)-- but that the playstyle at which the game was aimed.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    I want to point out that you are talking about a small subset of people online who feel that way. Regardless, you know how verisimilitude is kind of a passion-project/#1 priority for you? There are a lot of people for whom autonomy over their character is something that they feel equally as passionate about. Something like, 'The DM gets to set up the world, the dice decide how things end up, my character can conceivably be placed in an absolutely unwinnable position, but you do not get to tell me what decisions they make (unless they are mind-controlled or something, which had better follow some very well-defined rules).' I can understand having a strong position on either.
    And as I said above, as far as I'm concerned, no one is taking away autonomy over their character, they had 100% control and they limited their own future valid decision space when they made their character building decisions. A player who slaps a 6 INT on their character today has no more business griping about "restricted choices" tomorrow, than someone who spent all their money at the bar last has any business griping that he can't afford lunch today.

    As Anonymouswizard pointed out, this loops back to balance in that in systems designed on, or campaigns dominated by, the attitude that character intellect, knowledge, and sagacity is meaningless, remove that aspect of the character as a balance-point -- the wizard, the educated noble, the clever rogue, all lose that as part of their capability, because the player gets to ignore it and make the character as smart as they can be made via the player's own brain. So the wizard's abilities are all in their spellcasting, they can't be the sage advisor to the party as well.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

    Verisimilitude -- n, the appearance or semblance of truth, likelihood, or probability.

    The concern is not realism in speculative fiction, but rather the sense that a setting or story could be real, fostered by internal consistency and coherence.

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  7. - Top - End - #37
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    @Anonymouswizard:
    4e? This might be something to check out, if I ever find a Group for it, where I'm not the DM.

    4e looked a bit too much of a MMO, and the Diablo RPG was decent enough for that: but maybe some of the underpinning 4e Mechanics can be salvaged and converted….

    Perhaps a separate thread for this?
    *********
    I really don't know why the Devs didn't leave Sorcerer and Wizard spells as one list.
    There isn't that much of a difference to really matter, IMO.

    Bards mix some Cleric in, so a separate list is fine by me.

    I actually really like how the new Warlock works, except some Subclass options, but that's separate.

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard
    Or maybe we could stop this idea that using magic means you have no mundane skills. Heck, let's have wizards picking up swords and bows because their magic isn't combat focused, or having the mundane skills that synergise with the buff spells they learnt.
    This would actually be interesting.
    Especially since if weapon and armor is wanted, they either choose Elf or Dwarf or Multiclass.

    Maybe split the difference, where there are Blaster Mages, Control Mages, and Support Mages, which used to be a thing.

    Clerics being more than Buff and Heal bots is also nice.

    @Willie: yep.
    Murder-Hobos were usually the first to die in the Dungeon.... Munchkins were expected, since everyone was doing it.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    Um ... I'm not sure what you actually want.

    If even a super limited Specization Sorcerer is still too powerful for you.

    Either you want magic to suck to the point no one ever wants to play a caster
    Or
    absolutely no magic at all.
    Which isn't D&D anymore.
    ...what? No. In what possible way could you infer that from my argument?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    I think we could come up with much more fun ways to limit spellcasters.

    Having them roll to gather energy before they cast a spell. During slower periods they don't have to worry, but when things get tense you might not have the time to gather the energy.

    Or having a small and quickly recharging mana pool. We're limiting how much magic can be cast in a row, but we're not completely cutting mages out for long periods.

    Or maybe we could stop this idea that using magic means you have no mundane skills. Heck, let's have wizards picking up swords and bows because their magic isn't combat focused, or having the mundane skills that synergise with the buff spells they learnt.
    Any of this could possibly work. The last one is probably a requirement no matter what else is done; the strict "martial/caster" divide is kind of untenable.

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    I am going to go to bat for OSR gaming (which I sometimes, but don't always, favor). Many of us who started with TSR-era D&D absolutely did get the system to work. Mind you, it took some constraint on playstyle -- it does, in fact, get harder as you leave traditional dungeon crawling, plus hexcrawling after ~level 3 (when it actually starts to really suck to be a magic user), plus the keep & castle portion (where 'can summon meteors' and 'can summon armies' tends to be a toss-up)-- but that the playstyle at which the game was aimed.
    The system may well have worked to limit casters in the old-school games, strictly speaking. I just don't think the way in which it did so was fun or desirable. And while the game may have originally been aimed at dungeon-crawling, people who played it eventually took it beyond that. Whether we like it or not, it needs to be addressed. Then again, OSR games have no appeal to me at all, so I just have an entirely different perspective.
    Last edited by Morty; 2019-07-31 at 01:14 PM.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    ...what? No. In what possible way could you infer that from my argument?
    Pardon my tendencies to go to extremes.

    But, I was actually confused by what you were aiming for, by your comment of "almost" on my reduced mage idea.

    Spell points are just a more exploitable slot system to me. One of the reasons why I'm not going to try converting Psionics into 5e.

    Too much work, and I'd most likely be heckled into silence, like my Factotum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty
    Any of this could possibly work. The last one is probably a requirement no matter what else is done; the strict "martial/caster" divide is kind of untenable.
    I actually did not have a problem with limited weapon choices for either Wizard or Sorcerer.
    Not everyone that picks up a sword is as effective with it as the person trained (fighter) to use it. Please don't point at Gandolf, he's not really a wizard.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty
    The system may well have worked to limit casters in the old-school games, strictly speaking. I just don't think the way in which it did so was fun or desirable. And while the game may have originally been aimed at dungeon-crawling, people who played it eventually took it beyond that. Whether we like it or not, it needs to be addressed. Then again, OSR games have no appeal to me at all, so I just have an entirely different perspective
    I like that there are more things to do Outside a dungeon. I agree that just Delving gets tedious after a while.

    Honestly, I don't do true OSR games very often.
    While low level quirks and Character development can be fun, I liked being able to change the outcome of a Battle between armies as a 20th level mage.

    I do use the OSR style in my games.
    "Play smart, be creative, and work as a team."
    Last edited by Great Dragon; 2019-07-31 at 02:08 PM.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    Sure, feather fall is better than a Monk's Slow fall, but the caster can only do that a few times a day. And there is no limit on how often the Monk can do that trick. It doesn't even require Ki to use.
    The thing is, how often do you need to do that? Usually people don't have to deal with falling more often than once or twice per day. Sure, you could make a niche situation in which you have a lot of falling hazards, but it's still demonstrative of why spell slots don't really work as a good limiter — it's just that casting a spell to solve a problem which arises once per day or less often works too well.

    Besides, most narratives just don't deal with the adventuring day as envisaged by WotC or TSR. Having "medium-difficulty" battles designed to just sap resources but not be immediately threatening is boring. They don't go down fast enough for you to feel powerful, and they don't threaten you enough to be challenging. A lot of GMs prefer doing 1-2 combats per day, because it's far easier narratively and also far quicker to think of something interesting for those battles, but in that case all that "resource expenditure" gameplay breaks down.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ignimortis View Post
    The thing is, how often do you need to do that? Usually people don't have to deal with falling more often than once or twice per day. Sure, you could make a niche situation in which you have a lot of falling hazards, but it's still demonstrative of why spell slots don't really work as a good limiter — it's just that casting a spell to solve a problem which arises once per day or less often works too well.

    Besides, most narratives just don't deal with the adventuring day as envisaged by WotC or TSR. Having "medium-difficulty" battles designed to just sap resources but not be immediately threatening is boring. They don't go down fast enough for you to feel powerful, and they don't threaten you enough to be challenging. A lot of GMs prefer doing 1-2 combats per day, because it's far easier narratively and also far quicker to think of something interesting for those battles, but in that case all that "resource expenditure" gameplay breaks down.
    I know it's not a popular opinion in these parts, but, this really starts to get into why I consider the whole "adventuring day" and "resource expenditure" and "x/day" setup... something that's time has come and gone. There are other, better, more fluid and adaptable ways to handle things, and D&D just seems to refuse to consider them outside of optional rules that frankly fans of the game seem to hate.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    @Ignimortis:
    See, now we're heading towards the Shrodigers Wizard and/or Metagaming problem. Those spell choices are Level Dependent, and requires knowing what's likely to be Encountered in the Area/Session.

    Sure, situations where Feather Fall are even needed aren't common, but then the Wizard is most likely not going to memorize that spell, unless there's enough information saying that it's needed in this area. Like maybe climbing a mountain or a bridge over a deep gorge or 50+ foot deep pit traps big enough to catch at least half the party are known to be Scattered around this level of the Dungeon. Pits of less than 30 shouldn't really justify that (unless the Party is 1st level, and 3d6 damage can kill someone), unless known to have poisoned spikes. (Which if the Party is at least 5th level, Fly is usually a better choice).

    Something that uses a Reaction, and burns a spell slot and is far more likely to be memorized? Shield.

    Wizards really are the Classic Batman of Fantasy.
    Know what's going on? Pown it.
    Not prepared for that Encounter? Get Pwned.

    It's DMs (and some Players) with a 'magic always solves the problem' mentality, that cause most of the complaints I see listed on the forums.

    In my games, sure magic can solve a problem, but magic also creates its own problems, and actually being a Smarty-pants Wiseperson is a good thing.

    And sometimes your Barbarian/Fighter/Ranger\Rogue friend/s is the solution!

    *****

    The x/day Monsters Encountered suggested by WotC is IME/O garbage.

    And I agree having medium Encounters that just drain resources is tedious, unless there is some actual reason for those to be there. Like directed Minions of a BBEG, deliberately sent to try and drain said resources.

    Sure, if I have the time, I'll roll Random Encounters for the area the party is in, and note locations for each. But, I don't just say: "Oh! A random encounter just happened! Let's see what pops up!" Unless it's literally an unplanned game session.

    I'm doing D&D - not running a tabletop version of Diabo or Dungeon Crawl Classics, where that's expected by everyone in the Group.
    Last edited by Great Dragon; 2019-07-31 at 11:28 PM.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    I know it's not a popular opinion in these parts, but, this really starts to get into why I consider the whole "adventuring day" and "resource expenditure" and "x/day" setup... something that's time has come and gone. There are other, better, more fluid and adaptable ways to handle things, and D&D just seems to refuse to consider them outside of optional rules that frankly fans of the game seem to hate.
    Yeah. I prefer to work with action economy, which is why I love martial adepts and other classes that are less X/day and more "I have these types of actions and 2-4 options for most of them".

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    @Ignimortis:
    See, now we're heading towards the Shrodigers Wizard and/or Metagaming problem. Those spell choices are Level Dependent, and requires knowing what's likely to be Encountered in the Area/Session.

    Sure, situations where Feather Fall are even needed aren't common, but then the Wizard is most likely not going to memorize that spell, unless there's enough information saying that it's needed in this area. Like maybe climbing a mountain or a bridge over a deep gorge or 50+ foot deep pit traps big enough to catch at least half the party are known to be Scattered around this level of the Dungeon. Pits of less than 30 shouldn't really justify that (unless the Party is 1st level, and 3d6 damage can kill someone), unless known to have poisoned spikes. (Which if the Party is at least 5th level, Fly is usually a better choice).

    Something that uses a Reaction, and burns a spell slot and is far more likely to be memorized? Shield.

    Wizards really are the Classic Batman of Fantasy.
    Know what's going on? Pown it.
    Not prepared for that Encounter? Get Pwned.
    The thing is...a typical level 6 Wizard in 5e can prepare 10 spells. That means they've got maybe 3-4 mainstay spells that they expect to use often (Fireball, Shield, Hold Person, Haste?), and 6-7 slots for other things. Slotting both Feather Fall and Shield isn't that hard, really. Subbing in Fly is also an option, though an expensive one. So they are Batmen of fantasy - in the sense that Batman is usually capable of being prepared for everything.

    By level 10 that's 15 spells, and you drop some of the old mainstays to replace them with new ones. Fly is no longer cast out of "the best slot", too. Those things scale non-linearly, with more levels = both better spells, more spells and more capability to use whatever spells you want.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ignimortis
    So they are Batmen of fantasy - in the sense that Batman is usually capable of being prepared for everything.
    See, I figure the reverse, where Batman can't know and prepare for everything.

    But, this isn't about Batman. Besides - he's someone else's "I can solve every problem" MAD Multiclassed-to-the-hilt character, anyway.

    Spoiler: who cares?
    Show

    Unlike Modern Batman, Classic Batman doesn't have access to things that allow him to instantly know what is going on.

    The Batsignal lets him know that something is happening, but has to go ask Gordon what it is.

    He only has what he brought with him, or put in the batmobile.

    Once knowing which Villain he's dealing with, he immediately takes off.

    He wins by being smart, more than whatever gadgets he brought.


    I actually like playing Mages, so I'll see what I can come up with.

    Spoiler: 5e Wizard
    Show

    So, level 10. No school.
    Figure Point Buy start.
    15 Int, 15 Con, 11 Dex, 10 Str, 10 Wis, 10 Cha.

    Let's say High Elf to get +2 Dex and+1 Int.
    16 Int 13 Dex
    Both ASIs into Int = 20. (Can't exceed)

    +4 Proficiency
    Skills: Elf: Perception.
    Sage (Apprentice) Background: Arcana, History.
    Two bonus Languages.
    Class: Insight, Religion.

    5 Cantrips. 4/3/3/3/2

    My Typical Adventuring spell list:

    Cantrips: Fire Bolt, Light, Message,
    Poison Spray, and Acid Splash.

    (4 slots) First Level
    Shield, Mage Armor

    (3 slots) Second Level
    Misty Step, Mirror Image.

    (3 slots) Third Level
    Counterspell, Fireball.

    (3 slots) Fourth Level
    Greater Invisibility, Phantasmal Killer.

    (2 slots) Fifth Level
    Hold Monster, Rary's Telepathic Bond.

    5 bonus spells:
    (1st) Chromatic Orb
    (2nd) Hold Person
    (3rd) Haste
    (4th) Arcane Eye
    (5th) Passwall


    Now, the real question is what is in the
    Spoiler: Spellbook
    Show


    First level spells: Shield, Thunderwave, Detect Magic, Identify, Mage Armor, Chromatic Orb

    (2nd class lv) Feather Fall, Fog Cloud.

    Second Level spells: Misty Step, Mirror Image,
    (4th class lv) Hold Person, Detect Thoughts

    Third level spells: Counterspell, Fireball.
    (6th class Level) Haste, Fly.

    Suggested Stop?

    Fourth level spells:
    Greater Invisibility, Phantasmal Killer.
    (8th class level)
    Arcane Eye, Mord's Private Sanctum

    Fifth level spells:
    Hold Monster, Rary's Telepathic Bond.
    (10th class level)
    Passwall, Teleportation Circle.

    Currently not giving any extra spells from treasure.


    As can be expected, Wiz has some options, but not every spell available can be prepared.

    Again, switching out spells Requires knowing what is needed ahead of time, and the Baddies should not allow an 8 hour break to change things. Heck even a Short Rest might be tricky getting.

    Spoiler: calculations
    Show


    So, sacrifice a 1st level slot for 8 hours of Mage Armor, keep at least one slot in reserve for Shield. Leaving two slots for Orb.

    Three slots for 2nd Level: At least one use of Mirror Image during a fight. Save one for Misty Step, leaves only one left.

    Three slots for 3rd Level:
    One slot for Haste, one slot reserved for Counterspell, only one slot left.

    Three slots for Fourth Level:
    One slot for Phantasmal Killer, one reserved for Greater Invisibility, and most likely one Arcane Eye used to help Party Scout/Rogue

    Two slots for Fifth Level:
    One slot for Rary's Telepathic Bond, one slot reserved for Hold Monster.

    Short Rest: Even if getting 5 levels of slots back, still limited to what is already memorized, so up to player to decide what might be useful.
    Teleportation Circle escape?

    Once out of all spell slots, must spam Cantrips.


    Figure some Random (1d6) moderate, at least two Hard and maybe one Deadly - Encounters per "Adventuring day".

    Fireball is needed for large groups.
    Competes with Counterspell against enemy casters.

    Invisibility requires Concentration, and there are still ways to detect, and attackers only have Disadvantage to hit while active.

    Mirror Image only possibly prevents three hits during a fight. (Actually less effective than Dodge Action)

    No listed magical items: DM dependant.

    Oh, and for non-combat comparisons:
    No Spider Climb, or Knock (etc) spells available.

    Fly has limited speed and duration, and requires Concentration; maximum four times a day, if willing to not have any other third level spells available. Upcasting it isn't really worth doing, unless doing Party Travel.

    Creative Players and DMs that actually care, can do these - with, or without, magic.

    *****
    So, please point out how that Wizard still outclasses the "I don't need magic" PCs?
    Last edited by Great Dragon; 2019-08-01 at 02:44 AM.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Great Dragon View Post
    While low level quirks and Character development can be fun, I liked being able to change the outcome of a Battle between armies as a 20th level mage.
    Which is not a problem, as long as the fighter and the rogue have just as much opportunities to do so as the wizard. Which they should have, honestly, since 20th level fighter and rogues are supposed to be death incarnate

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    See, this is why I believe that spells SHOULD be skills, for non-combat stuff. Stuff like fireball, firebolt, cone of cold, whatever are fine for the most part. But the binary "either be magical or get lost" aspect of forcecage, certain wall spells, or really the vast majority of the wizards library are pretty bad design imo. I would much rather stuff like that be a use of a skill-check, and one that another mage could oppose.

    But that gets into the root of the problem, that Vancian magic has fundamental flaws and is something that I would love to get rid of. But since Vancian magic is the topic of this thread, that's unfortunately out of the question.



    However, of we can't use magic as skills, we could steal something else from 13th age, mainly the rest system. For those whose are unfamiliar, 13th age has a pretty strict "two encounters per rest". It doesn't matter how long you sleep or meditate, you can only get the mechanical benefits of a rest after two encounters or the equivalent. Similarly, you can only take a long rest every two short rests.

    While this isn't especially realistic (Apologies in advance, Max), it does create a system where the spellcaster is physically incapable of forcing a five-minute work day. It also allows fights to happen at a reasonable pace while still draining the party resources. Because let's be honest, four to six combats a day is a bit insane for a game that's not set in a warzone.
    Last edited by comk59; 2019-08-01 at 03:41 AM.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    So here's a question, how would Saitama, of one punch man fame, fair against a high level wizard in dnd?

    He's not a god, and purely martial, so I'm curious where he would rank.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jakinbandw View Post
    So here's a question, how would Saitama, of one punch man fame, fair against a high level wizard in dnd?

    He's not a god, and purely martial, so I'm curious where he would rank.
    In the typical D&D setting... where does Saitama get his powers?
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    In the typical D&D setting... where does Saitama get his powers?
    Same way he gets them in the anime: 100 situps, 100 pushups and a long run each day. Outside of that (which obviously doesn't work for everyone) noone knows. It's unexplained and unexplainable.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jakinbandw View Post
    Same way he gets them in the anime: 100 situps, 100 pushups and a long run each day. Outside of that (which obviously doesn't work for everyone) noone knows. It's unexplained and unexplainable.
    Makes it harder to say. Does he ever have to deal with, resist, etc, magic in the series?
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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    The concern is not realism in speculative fiction, but rather the sense that a setting or story could be real, fostered by internal consistency and coherence.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    Makes it harder to say. Does he ever have to deal with, resist, etc, magic in the series?
    He can keep telekinetics from throwing him around, and monster powers generally don't do anything to him.
    Imagine if all real-world conversations were like internet D&D conversations...
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    Makes it harder to say. Does he ever have to deal with, resist, etc, magic in the series?
    After a quick search but he resisted mind control because his willpower is as strong as his ability to physically withstand attacks. Other than that, he also fought an opponent that was immune to physical interactions and still killed them with a single punch, so he definitely can punch hard enough to break magic. He is also shown to survive the vacuum of space just by holding his breathe without taking any real damage from it but that's as far as I know his only feat vrs something like poison.

    The point I was trying to get at here wasn't could a specific character work for martials in such a setting, but could characters like that keep up with mages. If we have to tweak it a bit so that they always succeed on all saving throws and never suffer any ill effects from saving throws they make, it wouldn't be too far off of what we see of Saitama for example. I'm asking a more general: Could this be a good template for martials in a world where mages aren't bound by normal dnd casting.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jakinbandw View Post
    So here's a question, how would Saitama, of one punch man fame, fair against a high level wizard in dnd?

    He's not a god, and purely martial, so I'm curious where he would rank.
    This depends on what you allow Saitama to do with his strength.
    How many times do you let Saitama act on their turn?
    How flexible do you allow those actions to be?
    Low: It is an attack that hits and kills its target
    Medium: It allows them to impart an unstoppable force or act as an immovable object
    High: What else can the fist do besides everything enabled by the Medium option? Name 5+


    If you base martials off of Saitama but only allow them 1 unerringly accurate and infinitely damaging attack per round, then they would be strong but worse off than the current martials. You realized martials don't need to be limited by resources but you didn't imagine their potential flexibility.

    If you base martials off of Saitama but only allow them to impart an unstoppable force or act as an immovable object then they would be strong, and more importantly, better off than some of the current martials. You realized there is potential for flexibility without a resource limitation. At this point your design, when evaluated as a solution, would rank around the Tome of Battle classes. They are more flexible but their design is not a perfect fit (let's leave it at that).

    However the 5E Wizard has 5th level spells and the 5E Ancients Paladin has some really nice Auras. If you want the non-magic non-casting at-will martials to be as fleshed out as their counterparts, then you will want to do even more. Can you imagine more?

    Afterall, this is not a rating of raw numbers. So despite Saitama being possibly stronger than a Wizard, it is likely to be less suited as a high level character class.
    Last edited by OldTrees1; 2019-08-01 at 05:38 PM.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by OldTrees1 View Post
    This depends on what you allow Saitama to do with his strength.
    How many times do you let Saitama act on their turn?
    How flexible do you allow those actions to be?
    Low: It is an attack that hits and kills its target
    Medium: It allows them to impart an unstoppable force or act as an immovable object
    High: What else can the fist do besides everything enabled by the Medium option? Name 5+


    If you base martials off of Saitama but only allow them 1 unerringly accurate and infinitely damaging attack per round, then they would be strong but worse off than the current martials. You realized martials don't need to be limited by resources but you didn't imagine their potential flexibility.

    If you base martials off of Saitama but only allow them to impart an unstoppable force or act as an immovable object then they would be strong, and more importantly, better off than some of the current martials. You realized there is potential for flexibility without a resource limitation. At this point your design, when evaluated as a solution, would rank around the Tome of Battle classes. They are more flexible but their design is not a perfect fit (let's leave it at that).

    However the 5E Wizard has 5th level spells and the 5E Ancients Paladin has some really nice Auras. If you want the non-magic non-casting at-will martials to be as fleshed out as their counterparts, then you will want to do even more. Can you imagine more?

    Afterall, this is not a rating of raw numbers. So despite Saitama being possibly stronger than a Wizard, it is likely to be less suited as a high level character class.
    Key parts of Saitama if I was to build him as a class:
    1: Movement speed - Saitama has the ability to jump from the moon to the earth in a single action. This means his movement speed must be around 250 000 a round. Maybe half that or a quarter that depending on what move action he used. We might limit him by requiring his movement to be made in a straight line, but I don't think that's fair to the source material because we often see him able to move behind people before they can spot him.

    2: Off turn actions - Saitama doesn't do it often, but occasionally he obviously takes actions in the middle of someone elses turn, either to move, or to attack. Maybe a limited resource of how many times he can do it, say it costs his reaction, or an attack of opportunity or something?

    3: AoE Attacks that deform the terrain - Saitama each of saitma's attacks scales from light hit, to being able to blow mountains away. Any build of saitama should be able to deform the terrain for miles around with a single attack

    4: Multiple Attacks - Saitama can hit multiple foes, or a single foe multiple times a round. This is also shown to be used in conjunction with his AoE attacks.

    5: Resistance - Nothing can really hurt Saitama, so he should be able to shrug of pretty much any foe that is not on his level.

    6: Damage - He does enough damage to kill anything that doesn't have a way to immediately resurrect from death. Anything he wants to kill should die.

    7: Lack of other options - Everything under brute force is his domain, but that doesn't give him access to wish and such. In such a scenario, a mage can be useful to help ferry saitama around, track down targets, and use wish and stuff to do non combat things. A Saitama class of course makes mages completely pointless in combat, but to be fair, they also mean combat would no longer be the focus of the game. If a god needs to die, the saitama class can kill it. the game then becomes more focused around should the god be killed, and what to do after it dies.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jakinbandw View Post
    Key parts of Saitama if I was to build him as a class:
    So it ends up at Medium flexibility. While this Saitama is stronger than the ToB classes, its flexibility hovers in that vicinity.

    Also serves as a good example to help wake up our imagination for if we tried to do a High level High flexibility martial class. For example we saw this Medium flexibility make the most out of the one power.
    • The fast movement is a result of the irresistible force, but we can imagine the movement speed being used for creative ends.
    • The resistance is a result of the immovable object, but we can imagine creative uses for that beyond just surviving combats.
    • The AOEs causing terrain alterations is a result of the irresistible force, but we can imagine creative uses for that beyond just combat movement control.

    Doing this for other exaggerated martial powers can see more options. All of that can be preparation for the challenge of imagining how to take it further (and rebalance too if needed).
    Last edited by OldTrees1; 2019-08-02 at 12:14 AM.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by OldTrees1 View Post
    So it ends up at Medium flexibility. While this Saitama is stronger than the ToB classes, its flexibility hovers in that vicinity.
    I suppose. But I still think it would be at an appropriate power level if mages were using MP instead of spell slots to cast spells.

    Like with his speed, he can do a line search over the entire forgotten realms (at distances of less than 100 feet between each line he searches) in under 5 minutes. Now sure, that's longer than a spell, but it is also means that he can pull off scry and fry tactics, because if he finds a foe, they are dead, and he can run from one side of the forgotten realms to the other in less than a single move action. He can pick up things (arbitrarily strong) and move them to the other side of the setting. If there are any natural healing springs anywhere he can pick up people in need of healing and take them there in a round, and then take them back to the fight. So on and so on. Now I know that being able to do this doesn't necessary make him as flexible as a wizard, but considering that nothing in the setting can hurt him, and he can kill anything he is on the same plane as would make him worthy of sitting with high level wizards in my opinion. Or put it another way, I would be happy to play such a character. Being able to move cities around, build anything I wanted just by punching the terrain and then using the pieces to build whatever.

    Sure I couldn't use wish, but I could kill anything that needed to be dead faster and easier than any mage, and my mode of transportation is faster or more versatile than teleports (either teleports are an action, or they are a contingency. Saitama can move as a reaction and move anywhere in the setting I want).

    Anyway, if such a class is just tier 2, I wish someone would write it up. It would be cool to have that level of problem solving ability as a martial!

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    IDK, doing that (unavoidable strikes and instant kill damage) either causes combat to become pointless, or foes/monsters doing similar, where only Initiative matters, for who wins.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jakinbandw
    I'm asking a more general: Could this be a good template for martials in a world where mages aren't bound by normal dnd casting.
    Am I the only one that sees how much more 5e does than any other Edition?

    Despite not having everything figured out, much less memorized?

    5e Barbarians doubling there HP against Physical Attacks are miles ahead of their 3x versions, with Bear Totem being leagues.
    (And people homebrewing feats to resist the only energy that hurts them. And now "official" races that grant that.)

    For raw effectiveness comparison, you'd have to go back to when the Barbarian was first introduced. When it was considered game breaking, along with Cavalier, and Monk.

    Fighter get the best Armor options, and Indomable for more ways to break free of magical control/restraining effects.

    Mages are more worried about maxing out their Casting stat, with a maximum of DC 19 and +11 to hit. (without a Wand of the Warmage: which adds +3 at most)

    That's a 50/50 bet against Warriors with Plate, shield, and Defense style. Magic added to AC means that the Mages need to roll a 16+ to hit. (Also against Monsters with AC 27)

    Fighters can sac 4 (of 7) feats for Resistance, to get Proficiency in all saves. Which is a roll of 8+ on a d20.

    Other Martials could also get all saves, and have one feat to spare, with vHumans having another.

    Maybe I just think in ways that don't always seem right to others?

    To me
    Mana/Psionic Points? Too much Math, and extremely exploitable. Especially in 5e.

    Psychic Warriors are just variant Eldritch Knights.

    Soulknife might be a Rogue Subclass.
    It's just a weapon that can't be easily lost, with maybe a few tricks added?
    Really, wouldn't be any more OP than, say, a Swashbuckler.

    Psion is just a Sorcerer type.

    Forget Wilder, seems to me that overchannel breaks Bounded Accuracy.

    *****
    Tome of Battle classes are just six different versions of either Battlemaster Fighter (something other than Superiority Dice needed), or Six new Monk Subclasses with level based # known and x/day Discipline powers (which might fit the theme better)
    (which is just a limited Slot system, to me)

    Where Stances might be a Bonus Action to activate, last no longer than a minute, and requires Concentration.
    Last edited by Great Dragon; 2019-08-02 at 11:17 AM.
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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    If I pick up a book or PDF for a new system, and start seeing unavoidable attacks and instant kills, I generally put it down.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    If I pick up a book or PDF for a new system, and start seeing unavoidable attacks and instant kills, I generally put it down.
    Ah, so you don't play 3.5 or pathfinder eh? :p

    (just teasing, in on phone so I can't use blue text)
    Last edited by Jakinbandw; 2019-08-02 at 11:02 AM.

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    Default Re: How stronger would non-magic classes need to be to allow broad-non vancian magic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sordahon View Post
    Casters who can cast from all their spells known using mana with 1 mana for 1st tier spells and 9 mana for 9th tier spells, each spell slot would give max mana based on it's tier. So a lvl 20 wizard would get to cast all their spells as long as they have enough mana of their for example 185+bonus mana based on modifier. That would make spell casters overwhelmingly powerful and thus the question, how strong melee/ranged physical classes would need to be to not fall short.
    Well, balance doesn't mean you have to make non-spellcasters as powerful as spellcasters. You can put some limits on magic that make it less powerful. Start by really enforcing the material component rules. Spell casters end up spending a bunch of their time looking for the material they need and they tend to be less likely to toss spells around if they only have enough materials for two more applications of the spell. That's a simple RAW fix right there. If you want to move away from the rules then a whole world of possibility opens up before you.

    I like (but am not using) a system where casting magic is difficult. The simplest way to do this is to give every spell a base 15 DC to be successfully cast. Add the level of the spell (cantrips are level 0) to get the target DC for successfully casting. Allow the caster to add their proficiency and spell-casting-ability modifier to their roll. Beyond that you can gain additional modifiers. Using a spell focus, using material components, casting as a ritual, taking additional time, getting assistance from another magic user, having the spell prepared ahead of time, and so on can provide bonuses to the caster's roll. If the roll fails then wild magic surges can happen and the severity of the effect is modified by how badly the caster failed their roll. At lower levels you can get a severe, debilitating migraine. Higher level spell failures might cause your brain to squirt out your ears and splatter on the walls. That makes a difference when spellcasters are deciding what to do.

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