My thoughts about magic.

An area to facilitate free-form feedback on systems (in-game or out) related to Arelith.

Moderators: Active DMs, Forum Moderators

Post Reply
Radki
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:58 am

My thoughts about magic.

Post by Radki » Wed Jul 21, 2021 1:22 pm

Hello everybody, I don't know where to put it exactly so I decided to put it here, I'll divide this topic into 2 sections: Magical classes and Magic. Hope you'll enjoy!


Sorcerer, Wizard, Favored Soul and Cleric

So, I have been recently messing with every of above mentioned classes (I'm so sorry shamans and druids!) and I do have a feeling that something is off. And I mean not only the hitting pain of spontaneous classes with prestige ones (Like Sorc/PM or FS/Harper) that are not allowed to take any class that increases CL, simply due to hardcoded troubles with picking spells.

What I mean is this high inconsequence in all those classes. But maybe I will try to break it down class versus class. So here we go:

Sorcerer vs Wizard

In this scenario, thanks to recent addition of skills to the sorcerer and brew potion, there is no big gap between these two, I'd even call it a perfect imbalance. Sorcerer is a nice spammer and dispeller with better flexibility of usage of casting spells while a wizard still has a bit of upper hand over sorc in terms of flexibility of known spells, which is perfect, after all wizards have studied a lot, while sorcerers were discovering their heritage. This concludes with with 58 (sorc) vs 40 (wizard) spell usages with 19 casting stat and 34 vs infinity spells known (without cantrips)
The case is slightly different when it comes to specializations. Specialized wizards, of course giving up a school, have access to often game changing mechanics (like perma-haste on summons or +7 premonition). I'd like to see some dabbling with sorcererous heritages aka. bloodlines. It would be nice to see something that would flavor the origins of sorcerery, perhaps with a special feat near end of pre-epic, perhaps in a cost of stats or known spells.
Multiclassing on the other hand is favorable for sorcerers, as they are known for their love to dip into paladins/bgs to get those sweet saves. Wizard, however, can make usage of prestige classes, that widens the number of specializations even further for them.

Wizard vs Cleric

Here we have a situation where wizard is having omph spells and cleric is more retro-active. Well, not really. With the addition of haste to main cleric's spellbook we can have something more than Trickery/Travel domained clerics that are in meta. Actually I have noticed many clerics that I'd almost take for a wizard. They both have to prepare their spells so they are equal in those terms. However there is a weird gap between ability to cast spells, where wizard can cast 40 (wizard) spells vs 54 spells (cleric) with 19 casting ability. In addition Cleric is bestowed with spells meanwhile wizard has to learn them, which is perfectly fine. Utility-wise a wizard beats cleric really hard with their familiar, cookies of skills and additional feats
However, priest has this upper hand while casting 7-9 spells, which are based on piety. Piety is worse than components in usage, but only when you repeatively cast your spells. In all other scenarios, cleric has ability to regain piety fairly efordlessly by killing stuff, healing with some medical kits, simply putting some gold to altar or heck, just waiting while wizard is forced to either buy or create their components and literally hoard them and not be trigger happy because your component pouches can simply disappear. (I personally cannot imagine myself without at least three pouches and 500 components in my intentory).
As for other non-casting fields of these two, cleric definitely has upper hand, with their 3/4 AB and ability to use heavy armor in combat without burning 4 feats and 3 lvls on it they can take a semi-tank role or just go fully into battle priest. The saves are favorable also for cleric, as they get Fort and Will as their main stats that are further augmented by wisdom and consitution, while reflex can be partially saved by spell resistance, spellcraft and/or freedom of movement. Even path of cleric can be better in fight than wizard when the spells run out, because instead of usage of petty spells they can actually wreck a man with their zen archery.
To sum up, cleric is one-man when it comes to combat where wizard relies more on omph spells and utility.

Cleric vs Favored Soul

These two are actually quite similar, same AB, same skill points... and that's all. We have similar situation like wizard vs. sorcerer. FS has better elemental resistances, which in practice means goodbye to all rainbow dmg from essences, but instead they are unable to use their charisma the way they'd love, which is divine shield/might. Even saves are more favorable for FS as they get full progression on everything, and even if they are not boosted by wisdom, they are by charisma, making them land on safe point against every DC spell almost without an effort.
We have similar situation in terms of magic like wizard vs. sorcerer. They base on the same casting type, that is divine, so they can cast magic even when they are resembling a can. Casting wise, FS does it better. Naturally they don't have ability to be picky as cleric is, but they can cover everything needed. That leaves us with 58 vs 54 spells usages and 43 vs infinity spells known (without cantrips).
They both make great warrior materials, but casting wise, FS is better.

Sorcerer vs Favored soul

Spontaneous caster vs spontaneous caster, so my favourites. They both have the same difficult issue of picking spells, except, one side doesn't. I know that the very essence of sorcerer is having that urge, that uncertainty about your chosen spells. "Confusion or phantasmal on illusionist/enchanter or by chance... wall of fire to crisp my enemies while they are stuck in CCs?" I had no such feeling on FS however. I've counted the choices for spells by number and things that "I'd love to have on that circle" and I came with something like that (without cantrips):

Choices per circle for Sorcerer:
24/30/25/26/21/26/15/19/17

"I want to get on that circle for Sorcerer":
10/14/13/13/16/12/8/10/14

What I can get as Sorcerer:
5/5/4/4/4/3/3/3/3

Choices per circle for Favored Soul:
17/24/26/19/16/13/9/9/6

"I want to get it as FS":
9/15/12/10/7/7/5/5/4

What I can get as FS:

6/6/5/5/5/4/4/4/4

In the end, FS ends up with fewer choices but has more known spells (43) than sorcerer (34) and I wonder why? After all it's sorcerer who has wider choice and should know more than a class that can as well just grab a sword/bow and smack the opponent fairly well. It even came to that degree that whenever I see a sorcerer I have in mind "At 6th circle of spells they have: Mass Haste, IGMS, True Sight, unless they are flamers, they have Knocking Bigby, Chain and IGMS" and what is the worst, I'm correct most of the time.
FS also uses Piety, which was discussed above, is way easier to maintain but can be messy if you cast rapidly.
Statwise, FS if wishing to go into battle may be trickier to get, however casting ones are nearly the same, charisma, constitution and smash some int with str to that.
AB/Saves/AC/Resistances are definitely on FS side as they get 3/4 AB compared to Sorc's 1/2, full save progression and +5 to elemental resistances with ability to free usage of armors and shields.

What is more, FS is even better prepared gear-wise, because their stuff, unlike most of sorcerer's jewelery is craftable and grants stats with reasonable spell slots instead of empty spell slots like 0th ones. But that's also the case with a wizard.

End of (I think) class rant.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Magic, what is wrong with it?.

So, magic. If you have survived to this part, my congratulations, here I'll share some of my thoughts about magic.

As you can know, magic is either loved or hated and it is reasonable, mostly because of save or die mechanics which is extremaly unfun without any effects in the middle. It is like "Hahah! I feel like someone is farting!" even though they barely made a save roll for gust of wind just to fall over on the next cast for 3 rounds. I do have a feeling that something should be changed, like near saving line you have that 5 roll gap where you get secondary effect of spell, but that would require to rewrite every single spell in NWN and there is quite a bunch of them.

Another issue that struck me is amount of spells that available. For arcane people at 7th lvl there is little room than extended mass haste and I'd love to see something unique being put there. Same comes with divine 9th and 8th lvl which are lvls of sadness for me, at 8th is mass heal and 9th gate, implosion, sov.

Infinite magic - version divine, I'd totally see some signature spells for divine casters just as there are for wizards and sorcerers. It would make support priest somewhat more interesting instead of "Oh, I guess I will just summon a creature and put regeneration on it... and stand." Divine casters have bunch of interesting spells, not necessarly super OP, like sound burst or simply cure light wounds so that every priest wouldn't end up with bazzilion of healing kits.
I love sight of signature spells on specialized schools and I'd love to see a signature spells for ESF, but instead of 6th lvl spells, maybe 3th or 4th lvl ones, as the 1-2 spells are quite redundant later in the game.

I'd probably talk about enchantment school but I know that's just a game and not a tabletop, so some things are just impossible.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

So, what are your thoughts about classes and magic at Arelith? I'm curious what do you think, maybe I'm wrong somewhere and I'm just trying to overbalance things to one bland mass, let me know. And real congratulations if you have read through it all, I just felt like writing and here I am.

User avatar
Zavandar
Posts: 671
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 2:12 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Zavandar » Wed Jul 21, 2021 4:37 pm

People have been suggesting getting afflicted with a lesser effect vs save or die spells if you succeed the save for a while now. You're right, it's a very big ask to add something like that to every such spell. Idk if it is even possible to make it like "if you fail by 5 or more, then x" like suggested.

Regarding giving div classes signature/gsf spells like sorc and wiz, I'm ambivalent.

I'm leery of giving sorcs any sort of buff now that they get bonus skill points and also now that bg has hide/ms. BG having hide/ms is its own issue. It opened a big can of worms.

I think comparing the number of spells known and spellcasts in a vacuum isnt really going to accurately present just what each class's respective kits are capable of. Sorcs for example dont really miss anything except like, summon creature 9 and/or iceberg/bigby.

I will say atm it kind of feels like generalist wizard is really lacking. Everyone has been buffed around them and it is falling behind.

I think wild mage needs to be shot
Intelligence is too important

AstralUniverse
Posts: 1572
Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2019 2:54 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by AstralUniverse » Wed Jul 21, 2021 6:04 pm

Zavandar wrote:
Wed Jul 21, 2021 4:37 pm
I think wild mage needs to be shot
100% this. I'm baffled by the amount of things getting nerfed around here while this powerhouse of a class is allowed to exist quietly like that.
a shrouded figure wrote:
Thu Sep 02, 2021 9:45 pm
[Edited to cut back on sarcasm]

Duchess Says
Posts: 113
Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:52 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Duchess Says » Wed Jul 21, 2021 7:12 pm

Maybe it needs to be adjusted to keep the PVP people happy but let's stop talking right here about losing the class. It's very unique and very fun to play at least once.

MRFTW
Posts: 104
Joined: Mon May 03, 2021 5:37 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by MRFTW » Wed Jul 21, 2021 8:36 pm

Totem druids are a total blast. Very unique play style and some of the bonuses open up some really interesting options.

Also very beginner friendly with some guidance on spell selection, and a high ac sack of HP in PvP so you can at least watch a bit of it before someone splats you.

Disc is hard to get though, since only the highest single bonus from items is merged. Gearing in general is interesting and not the usual dweomerfest.

Dipping 3 knight to be able to guard your epic panther is also very nice, and gives discipline and taunt, which helps. It does come late though, and there's a case to be made for staying pure druid to eke out a few more points of SR, especially for PvE, although elemental swarm does a nice job of spreading out IGMS damage and providing panther sneak opportunities, even without knight levels or SF:Abjuration.

My only complaint it is that totem druids are not healer clerics and that is something that every caster suffers from.

User avatar
Kobayashimaru
Posts: 27
Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2020 12:59 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Kobayashimaru » Sat Jul 24, 2021 2:43 pm

AstralUniverse wrote:
Wed Jul 21, 2021 6:04 pm
Zavandar wrote:
Wed Jul 21, 2021 4:37 pm
I think wild mage needs to be shot
100% this. I'm baffled by the amount of things getting nerfed around here while this powerhouse of a class is allowed to exist quietly like that.
I honestly second this.

Or, at the very least, put it behind an award or something. I've seen more Wild mages around than sorcerers or wizards. Which doesn't make much sense.

Chosen Son
Posts: 109
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2019 2:33 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Chosen Son » Sat Jul 24, 2021 4:51 pm

I am honestly surprised myself that wild mage has survived all the nerf rounds myself.

fading
Posts: 107
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:52 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by fading » Sat Jul 24, 2021 6:18 pm

I too like the idea of clerical inficasting, but after all the love that clerics have recently gotten, I feel like they're in a really good place right now and shouldn't get any more cookies.

-XXX-
Posts: 1153
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:49 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by -XXX- » Sat Jul 24, 2021 8:35 pm

Clerics get infinicasting in the form of melee attacks.

AstralUniverse
Posts: 1572
Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2019 2:54 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by AstralUniverse » Sat Jul 24, 2021 10:42 pm

You dont need inficasting if all your enemies are dead after two harms and .. something with more than 0 damage.
a shrouded figure wrote:
Thu Sep 02, 2021 9:45 pm
[Edited to cut back on sarcasm]

Exordius
Posts: 308
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:42 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Exordius » Sun Jul 25, 2021 4:07 am

Clerics get infinicasting in the form of melee attacks.
Not all clerics care for or are built for melee so it could help those who prefer to be or must be purely casters.

Nitro
Posts: 2732
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2014 7:04 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Nitro » Sun Jul 25, 2021 6:18 am

But then you also buff the clerics that are combat capable. Being clad in heavy armour and swinging a mace in melee while smiting and healing is pretty much the definitive class identity for a D&D cleric.

Exordius
Posts: 308
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:42 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Exordius » Sun Jul 25, 2021 7:21 am

Even in D&D not all clerics are the armor wearing, mace wielding types. It usually depends on the God, a cleric of a martial God like Torm is going to be drastically different then a cleric of a magic focused God like Velsharoon.

Nitro
Posts: 2732
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2014 7:04 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Nitro » Sun Jul 25, 2021 9:22 am

Yes, and that's reflected in the different domain spells and abilities. The base features that enable a cleric to essentially be a martial caster are the same though. Besides, that's ignoring the actual point for the fluff. Buffing caster clerics will also buff those who do make full use of their kit (And will probably make healer clerics an even more attractive choice).

-XXX-
Posts: 1153
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:49 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by -XXX- » Sun Jul 25, 2021 10:20 am

Exordius wrote:
Sun Jul 25, 2021 4:07 am
Clerics get infinicasting in the form of melee attacks.
Not all clerics care for or are built for melee so it could help those who prefer to be or must be purely casters.
The divine power spell enables any cleric to perform well in melee.

LovelyLightningWitch
Posts: 108
Joined: Fri Feb 26, 2021 3:34 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by LovelyLightningWitch » Sun Jul 25, 2021 11:31 am

Exordius wrote:
Sun Jul 25, 2021 7:21 am
Even in D&D not all clerics are the armor wearing, mace wielding types. It usually depends on the God, a cleric of a martial God like Torm is going to be drastically different then a cleric of a magic focused God like Velsharoon.
In fact, in 2E clerics were split between Cleric (balanced), Mystic (Caster heavy) and Crusader (basically a paladin, but for any god).
-XXX- wrote:
Sun Jul 25, 2021 10:20 am
Exordius wrote:
Sun Jul 25, 2021 4:07 am
Clerics get infinicasting in the form of melee attacks.
Not all clerics care for or are built for melee so it could help those who prefer to be or must be purely casters.
The divine power spell enables any cleric to perform well in melee.
Divine power is a round/cl spell though. For those players who prefer slow and detailed dungeon crawls, round/cl spells are not very useful unless willing to cheese the rest system.

A infinicasting damage source, or in case of undead enemies - healing source (say, infinicast cure serious wounds/inflict serious wounds) could help carry clerics through dungeons whose stats are instead chosen to represent a "Mystic" rather than a "Cleric/Crusader" without buffing them in PvP.

After all, I doubt Inflict/cure Serious wounds, especially without metamagics, has any value in pvp even with Arelith's buffed cure line of spells.

Beard Master Flex
Posts: 137
Joined: Sun Dec 06, 2015 1:50 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Beard Master Flex » Sun Jul 25, 2021 12:04 pm

For PvE atleast a Cleric is so much better then a Wizard I dont really think infinite casting is really needed at all.

I'd much rather play a cleric then a Wizard in most situations.

Between even the most martially weak cleric being able to buff themselves into a competent fighter for 10-15 minutes a rest and being able to heal and buff summons into the 44-49AB range and make them almost un-killable I don't really see the issue as far as spell slots go. They even have more general spell slots as it is and their server specific items provide an insane amount of extras as part of their class items.

LovelyLightningWitch
Posts: 108
Joined: Fri Feb 26, 2021 3:34 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by LovelyLightningWitch » Sun Jul 25, 2021 12:17 pm

Beard Master Flex wrote:
Sun Jul 25, 2021 12:04 pm
For PvE atleast a Cleric is so much better then a Wizard I dont really think infinite casting is really needed at all.

I'd much rather play a cleric then a Wizard in most situations.

Between even the most martially weak cleric being able to buff themselves into a competent fighter for 10-15 minutes a rest and being able to heal and buff summons into the 44-49AB range and make them almost un-killable I don't really see the issue as far as spell slots go. They even have more general spell slots as it is and their server specific items provide an insane amount of extras as part of their class items.
10-15 minutes a rest is a very short time for playstyles that take 40 minutes to run through the Endless Battlefield manor or skullcrags vampires. Not due to lack of ability, but preference to emote out interacting with environment or party members when casting spells out of combat/healing.

I for one really wanted to play a proper cleric, but the fact that it's reliant on 10-15 minute periods of viability per rest discouraged me greatly. I ended up approximating with Gift of Devotion + LoreMaster/Martial just to avoid being dependent on resting more often than 30 minutes or more.

-XXX-
Posts: 1153
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:49 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by -XXX- » Sun Jul 25, 2021 1:46 pm

I think that those are more arguments favouring infinicasting in general.
Yes, the vancian concept of spellcasting is atrocious for PvE and can be outright detrimental if you want to RP during dungeon crawls.
It basically forces players to run through PvE content as quickly as possible.

That being said, what's the argument for specifically clerics getting any special treatment here? Unlike arcane spellcasters they aren't completely helpless once they run out of spells.
The arcanist GSF infini spells are really underwhelming and certainly aren't able to carry the mage by themselves if they run out of spells in the middle of a dungeon either.

Beard Master Flex
Posts: 137
Joined: Sun Dec 06, 2015 1:50 am

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Beard Master Flex » Sun Jul 25, 2021 7:09 pm

LovelyLightningWitch wrote:
Sun Jul 25, 2021 12:17 pm
Beard Master Flex wrote:
Sun Jul 25, 2021 12:04 pm
For PvE atleast a Cleric is so much better then a Wizard I dont really think infinite casting is really needed at all.

I'd much rather play a cleric then a Wizard in most situations.

Between even the most martially weak cleric being able to buff themselves into a competent fighter for 10-15 minutes a rest and being able to heal and buff summons into the 44-49AB range and make them almost un-killable I don't really see the issue as far as spell slots go. They even have more general spell slots as it is and their server specific items provide an insane amount of extras as part of their class items.
10-15 minutes a rest is a very short time for playstyles that take 40 minutes to run through the Endless Battlefield manor or skullcrags vampires. Not due to lack of ability, but preference to emote out interacting with environment or party members when casting spells out of combat/healing.

I for one really wanted to play a proper cleric, but the fact that it's reliant on 10-15 minute periods of viability per rest discouraged me greatly. I ended up approximating with Gift of Devotion + LoreMaster/Martial just to avoid being dependent on resting more often than 30 minutes or more.
Have you played a cleric to endgame for any length of time? I'm not saying your wrong - but I too prefer to roleplay and not speed through content and find myself rarely even using my divine favors/divine power. Dipping into them only for bosses or if my companions are struggling.

I've played a Healer Cleric to 30 with EDR III and just sit in Imp Expertise most of the time on the front line so I'm close by to heal and lend support with spells; being pretty tough to kill too! I designed this build exactly because I wanted to have time to emote and RP while adventuring while still being immeasurably useful. The fully buffed Elemental provides more then enough mechanical force (way more then Wizard GSF boons). If you go down the route with Animal Domain, Conjuration / Transmutation Focus the Cleric is basically a Conjuration Specialist Wizard with absolutely none of the downsides.

I rest maybe once a log in prior to going out adventuring? With Extend Spell you can feasibly be fully buffed with Divine Power for an hour or more if you pick the right domains. I just dont think its as serious a concern as your painting it. Especially if you're more focused on leisurely roleplaying vs being a PvP Beast.

User avatar
Diegovog
Posts: 423
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2017 7:23 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by Diegovog » Mon Jul 26, 2021 7:50 pm

Clerics/Favored Souls are currently the best for fair arena pvp. They have all the tools you need, they basically are only missing timestop.
Huge sustain with heal/greater resto/mass heal
Raw damage on harm
Buffs/Invulnerabilities through haste/death ward/freedom/clarity
AC with magic vestment/haste
AB with divine power
Access to best summons in gate/EDK/mummy dust/conduit
Damage shield with Lightning Shield

And you can always go war domain for a more physical build with really good ab/dmg and even divine dip.
Or crowd's favorite, evo combo.

And the funniest thing is, it's not even difficult to juggle the spell slots through different circles especially if you have some metamagic.

iirc clerics have always been one of the most played classes so that's fine. I'd just tune down the sustain.

AstralUniverse
Posts: 1572
Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2019 2:54 pm

Re: My thoughts about magic.

Post by AstralUniverse » Mon Jul 26, 2021 8:59 pm

Diegovog wrote:
Mon Jul 26, 2021 7:50 pm
Clerics/Favored Souls are currently the best for fair arena pvp. They have all the tools you need, they basically are only missing timestop.
Huge sustain with heal/greater resto/mass heal
Raw damage on harm
Buffs/Invulnerabilities through haste/death ward/freedom/clarity
AC with magic vestment/haste
AB with divine power
Access to best summons in gate/EDK/mummy dust/conduit
Damage shield with Lightning Shield
And there's also Aura vs Alignment which offers weaker but unbreachable damage shield.

P.S: add Aura vs Alignment to the breach list please. Or alternatively, make the damage shield only trigger against the chosen alignment rather than everyone, if possible.
a shrouded figure wrote:
Thu Sep 02, 2021 9:45 pm
[Edited to cut back on sarcasm]

Post Reply