I Want My Magic Back! - the Vancian Mage




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  1. #1
    The Guvnor
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    I Want My Magic Back! - the Vancian Mage

    Welcome to the first in a series of EN World subscriber articles entitled "I Want My Magic Back!" by Sigfried Trent. This series aims to encapsulate the old-school eclectic and wondrous feel of pre-4E magic in a 4E class.

    One of the more dramatic changes made by 4E was the abandonment of the so called ôVancianö magic system. It was so named in honor of the fantasy author Jack Vance who inspired D&D spell memorization with his Dying Earth series. Instead of memorizing a series of single use spells from a large pool of possibilities, 4E wizards have a relatively fixed set of spells drawn from a far more limited pool. The range of what spells could do also shrank dramatically from near infinite possibility, to a more limited list of damage values and status effects focused mainly on combat with more utility-based effects shifted off into rituals.

    The aim in this series of articles is to recapture that old-school magic feeling, but in a way that is mechanically compatible with 4E. Maintaining game balance is important, but we will be stretching the boundaries from time to time in order to give our new spellcaster flexibility in their repertoire and capture some of that wondrous and eclectic magic feeling of yesteryear.

    In this first article we will establish the basic rules for acquiring and casting Vancian spells by detailing a new class: the Vancian Mage, complete with schools of specialization and counterspelling. Finally we will offer a taste of what is to come with a small handful of iconic spells.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 164537Wizard.jpg  
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    Last edited by Morrus; Friday, 8th April, 2011 at 03:31 PM.

 

  • #2
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    a non-subscriber, sorry.... Any thoughts on this class? This is the single most desired class build for me. Good choice for a subscriber article: it'll probably get me to subscribe if people give it a thumbs up.

  • #3
    The Guvnor
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    Well, I think it's great - but then I would!

    The next article will detail a range of Rank I spells, and I'm currently working on a large selection of vile new necromantic spells based on The Necromantic Artes of Gar'Udok (a 3.5 book).

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    Great design for something I've wanted to do!

    Great job! I've been trying to figure a way to get the old-style magic feeling and flexibility into 4E and this article promises just that. I'll have to play test it when the future installments come out. If you're on the fence about subscribing, I recommend it. The tease spells listed give me great hope for the ones to come.

    ShadowVA

  • #5
    The Guvnor
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    Quote Originally Posted by shadowva View Post
    If you're on the fence about subscribing, I recommend it. The tease spells listed give me great hope for the ones to come.
    Check this one out (rough draft only - from an upcoming article; it will probably end up a bit different). This one's about as powerful as they get. Don't worry, they aren't all Rank X spells - we have plenty of low rank spells from Rank I to Rank IX, too! But we coudln't resist throwing in the occasional whopper!

    Last edited by Morrus; Sunday, 10th April, 2011 at 07:11 PM.

  • #6
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    A lot of cool and interesting stuff there. I'd say it's solid for its target audience, but I'll warn that you could probably use some strong 4e rules examination.

    A few quick examples:
    Consider "The Marquess Hellblood's Deathly Command" on Solos (Orcus, Tiamat, etc). A limitation of something like "An enemy with 100 hp or less" might work better. I'd actually even consider something like 50, but make it a minor action - I think minor actions for "single word" spells is a fantastic opportunity and lets them be awesome without their effect being out of control.

    Zintress of Whey's Unerring Darts of Force ends up trivializing all minions at moderate to high levels of play, especially since you can prepare enough to have one for every encounter.

    Moogstar's Rambunctious Rope Trick refers to "entangled (save ends)", probably should be grabbed, immobilized, or retrained.

    Anyhow, just to be clear - eagerly looking forward to all installments of this series.

  • #7
    The Guvnor
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    Check the file again, keterys - I just uploaded the latest version (you can tell you have the latest one because it has the preview of the spell I posted above in it). There are a couple of errated things - Deathly Command only works on a bloodied enemy of lower level than you, minions get a save against Darts of Force, and the entangled error is corrected.

  • #8
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    Wow, now that's some fast service

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  • #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by buddhafrog View Post
    a non-subscriber, sorry....
    Me, too.
    Can't subscribe becaus ENWorld does not accept paypal without credit card (but what's the sense of paypal then?)
    Now I'm sad. I think I buy an ice cream then.
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