Additional Magic Rule


I've been trying to expand on spell caster versatility without significant modifications to the standard TB magic rules. Had a thought while playing a game of Iron Heroes, due credit to IH for the wrinkle:

To start with, I'm using ‘Vanilla’ Trailblazer magic rules: BMB, spell slots, readied spells, rote, restricted, etc.

I'm adding a wrinkle to allow casters the ability to press beyond their readied spells or beyond their spell slots when the situation warrants the risk...

Pressing Magic Chrome:
When a spell caster desires to cast an unreadied spell or when a spell caster has exhausted their spell slots for a given level, the caster may press their magic capabilities: The caster checks their BMB vs a DC of 15 + 2 * Spell Level. On a success, the unreadied spell or additional slot is successfully cast, at a cost of a number of non-lethal points of damage equal to the spell level cast. On a failure, the unreadied spell or additional slot is successfully cast, at a cost of a number of points of Constitution ability damage equal to the spell level cast.

If the caster presses to cast an unready spell when an appropriate spell level slot is available, they exhaust the spell slot. In this case, on a failure, the cost is double the spell level in non-lethal damage.


Additional optional details I am considering:
• On a failed roll, the additional spell is not cast, but the caster still takes ability damage?

• Fortitude ST vs DC of 15 + 2 * Spell Level? {Probably less initial risk, but each failure will make additional casting harder}

• Institute a limit on the healing of this ability damage that it may not be ‘self-healed’ through magic until after a period of rest? Or that it may not be healed through magical means, at all? {Not sure if this will really be necessary, I expect this option would only be used when the party is in dire straights. Any ability heals after a rest, would serve as a slight tax on their resources for the next cycle based on pushing their limits in the prior rest cycle}

• Allow additional spell slot casts only after all spell slots at or above that level are exhausted? {Again, I'm not sure if this would really be necessary. I'm guessing most players will not take the risk of pushing the limits while clinging to a higher level spell.

I would enable this option for NPC / monster spell casters but doubt it would ever be used.

- Charlie

Wulf Ratbane

First of all, it's your game: Do what ye will.

As for myself, I find spellcasters to be powerful enough, needing little in the way of extra perks. You should be *trying* to run them out of spells-- this builds desired tension!

If you're using the Rest mechanic they should never run out of spells unless you want them to.

In a pinch, if you're feeling exceptionally generous, let them spend an action point to recover a spell slot-- any spell slot of any level they can cast.

There's really no need for the overhead of complex mechanics.