D&D (2024) 2024 Player's Handbook preview: "New Spells"

ECMO3

Hero
Why don't you list some of these monsters with counterspell we can organically insert into basically every encounter?

You are the DM, you make or change monster stats at will, that is part of "planning".

Your party is fighting 10 enemies, give every one four 3rd slots and counterspell.

If for some reason you feel a compelling need to only play monsters published by WOTC, put a mage in every combat for every PC who has shield.

It really is not that hard.

This feels like the theoretical Anti-Magic field caster supremacists wave around like the zero to one time a campaign it appears somehow balances things.

That is certainly another option. See it is pathetically easy to mitigate shield if you plan for it!
 

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ECMO3

Hero
I think that the fact a 1st level spell slot gains effectiveness while other 1st level spells lose relevance is an indicator of poor design IMO. A 1st level Burning Hands is meaningless at 10th level, a 1st level shield likely blocks more attacks at higher levels and costs negligible resources. This is compounded if you aren't running a bunch of MMO style trash encounters EVERY DAY like 5E assumes but few people actually play.

This is not true. Shield gets weaker at high levels.

In terms of mathematical power Shield is most effective when combined with an Armor class that is extremely difficult to hit and a condition that causes disadvantage.

Because attack modifiers increase quicker than AC, a shield used by an AC 18 character at 1st level is going to be a lot more powerful than shield used by a 21 AC character at 8th level. When you hit 20th level you will be facing things with a +15 attack or more.

The disadvantage mechanic is more difficult to impose at high level due to a myriad of high level monster abilities including immune to frightened and poisoned and truesight or blindsight. You can't swing a stick at a CR20 monster without finding one or more of those.

A 6th level Bladesinger optimized and running Blur or PEG is very rarely going to be hit by an attack. In one campaign I went 3 levels (4-7 I think) without getting hit by an attack a single time in combat (I did take damage from other things). The same Bladesinger got hit regularly at 18th-20th level.

Other 1st level spells are generally weaker than Shield (all of them except Wrathful Smite), but I think some of them maintain their power better than shield does as levels increase. Notably Absorb Elements, Wrathful Smite, Silvery Barbs, Bless and Cause Fear are about as useful at high level as at low level (WS and CF can be situational at high level but is still very effective in those situations).
 
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But this is where Warcaster comes in. It was an optional feat, but it was clearly designed to allow for shield using arcane casters to cast while holding a shield, otherwise it wouldn't have the line "You can perform the somatic components of spells even when you have weapons or a shield in one or both hands"

That wasn't designed for wizards, Sorcerers or Warlocks, they have their arcane focus and can't use shields.
It wasn't designed for Clerics or Paladins, they can make their shields Divine Focuses.

It was for the Druid, Eldritch Knight, Ranger and Valor Bard. The only casters who start with shields, and were expected to use them.
Yes. Maybe. But a feat is a resource cost too.

I had an eldritch knight with very high armor and shield. And it was annoying. Until we identified the actual problem: not enough encounters per long rest.
Until I can see how adventuring days work in 2024, i withhold my final judgement about the shield spell.
 

You are the DM, you make or change monster stats at will, that is part of "planning".

Your party is fighting 10 enemies, give every one four 3rd slots and counterspell.

If for some reason you feel a compelling need to only play monsters published by WOTC, put a mage in every combat for every PC who has shield.

It really is not that hard.



That is certainly another option. See it is pathetically easy to mitigate shield if you plan for it!
So the DM just pulls things out of their ass/cheats rather than WOTC make competent rules and balanced spells. Got it.
 



TwoSix

"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
Giving them an extra +5 to hit to counter shield sure is IMO. Moreover "just add counterspell" to every fight isn't clever either. It's just nerfing the spell with extra steps.
It's not how I would do it, personally, but calling it "cheating" is just going to make the conversation pivot to being about the term rather than an actual interesting conversation about the spell.
 

ECMO3

Hero
So the DM just pulls things out of their ass/cheats rather than WOTC make competent rules and balanced spells. Got it.

It is not cheating. The DM is the final arbitor in the game.

Making custom monsters is certainly more in line with the rules than changing how a spell works or banning it.
 

ECMO3

Hero
Giving them an extra +5 to hit to counter shield sure is IMO. Moreover "just add counterspell" to every fight isn't clever either. It's just nerfing the spell with extra steps.

I didn't say it was clever. Those that asked for it don't want to be clever, that is the whole point. They want shield to be nullified instead of finding a clever way to mitigate it. They want an easy button. It is the easy button.
 

This is not true. Shield gets weaker at high levels.

In terms of mathematical power Shield is most effective when combined with an Armor class that is extremely difficult to hit and a condition that causes disadvantage.

Because attack modifiers increase quicker than AC, a shield used by an AC 18 character at 1st level is going to be a lot more powerful than shield used by a 21 AC character at 8th level. When you hit 20th level you will be facing things with a +15 attack or more.
If math would be that easy...

While it is true what you said, most of those kind of calculations only take drawn out 1 on 1 combats into consideration. Effective hp is often not that important. If you can tank a few hits anyway, you should not bother casting shield regularly. But still, fights can get boring if a 1 on 1 situation appears.
 

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