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Clerical spell Harm, too powerful?

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sineater

First Post
Clerical spell Harm, to powerful?

Ok this 6th level spell allows you to cast it on anyone and reduce there hp's to 1d4. The person it is cast upon gets no saving throw. To me this spell seems quite powerful. But thats my opinion. To I would think you get a saving throw. If you fail it then you get reduced. But if you make it. You take a certain amount of damage instead. (Exm. 4d6 +1 per caster level) What do you guys think?
 

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Dr. Zoom

First Post
I think there has been one too many threads on the Harm spell. :D

Seriously, some think it is fine as written. More think it is too powerful as written, specifically that it gets the combination of a touch attack and no save. Most think that the touch attack is alright, but the spell should have a saving throw.

There have been many suggestions for what the save should be. Some say a Will save, because its cousins, the inflict wounds spells, have a Will save. Others think Fortitude is the right save. And if the save is made, some think it should do a set amount of damage, like 4d8+level, while others think it should take off half your current hit points. Those are your major choices. Pick one.
 

maddman75

First Post
<full metal jacket>
THIS IS MY HOUSE RULE FOR HARM. THERE ARE MANY LIKE IT, BUT THIS ONE IS MINE
</full metal jacket>

I give harm a fort save, success dealing 6d8+level (as if a 6th level version of an inflict), but cannot bring the target below five hit points. Want to avoid the situation of a character dying because they made the save!

Yeah, I know inflict gives a will save, but I like Fort. It does attack the body after all. For synergy with the inflict, I keep to the same damage scale.
 

mikebr99

Explorer
You forgot one (maybe more) Doctor... Change Harm to do a set amount of damage per caster level, say 10/level... no save.
 

Lucius Foxhound

First Post
Ugh. This again.

Harm is fine just how it is. Trust those hard-working people at WotC who play-test all these things, eh?

It doesn't kill you, it requires a touch attack, and there's DOZENS of ways of avoiding it. That's why it doesn't get a save.

Harm, leave it alone. Just like nature intended. :)
 

Ran

First Post
Well, I haven't seen this thread, since I am new here, but I could allow a save based on one question, if it possible: Do you get a save if you don't want to receive healing?
 

Dash Dannigan

First Post
Do undead get a saving throw when a cure spell is cast on them? How about a Heal spell? Should be the same as the inflict spells. Too many Harm threads, this dog has been beaten one too many times eh?
 

Celtavian

Dragon Lord
Re

Our house rule is as follows: Will save. If successful, you only lose half your hit points. Still very powerful, but nowhere near as overpowered as original harm.

Harm is not fine. There are not dozens of ways to avoid it. It is utter BS when a cleric can run up to a powerful dragon with a 1,000 hit points and knock him to 1d4 while his buddy takes a ready action with his fist, if he so chooses.

Harm is way overpowered. Even I, who believe haste is just fine as is, cannot believe anyone would think harm is fine as is.

The spell cannot be defended against except with SR, a high touch AC, a spell that turns you into undead, or actually being undead. Most of these players don't have access to and most monsters don't have in sufficient quantity to warrant harm having no save.

I think we are being kind just to allow it do half damage with a save and have full effect if failed. No other 6th level spell is this powerful with indefinite scaling.
 

Bonedagger

First Post
I say just like any Inflict spell you can make a Will save for half damage. I didn't even have to think twice about altering it.
 



Lucius Foxhound

First Post
Harm's fine as is

Celtavian said:
The spell cannot be defended against except with SR, a high touch AC, a spell that turns you into undead, or actually being undead. Most of these players don't have access to and most monsters don't have in sufficient quantity to warrant harm having no save.

Ummm... how about Fly? Or Levitate? Or Spider-Climb? How about that dragon just flaps his big ol' wings and gets out of the way? Gaseous Form? Anti-magic field? Repulsion? Bigby's Forceful Hand? Mislead? Wall of Force?

The list of goes on and on ... DOZENS.

Truth is, anyone who thinks Harm's too powerful in their campaign... is just a crappy DM. IMHO, of course. :)
 

hong

WotC's bitch
Re: Harm's fine as is

Lucius Foxhound said:

Ummm... how about WANGER? Or WANGER? Or WANGER-Climb? How about that dragon just flaps his big ol' WANGERS and gets out of the way? Gaseous WANGER? Anti-WANGER field? ReWANGERsion? Bigby's Forceful WANGER? MisWANGER? Wall of WANGER?

Sorry, Lucius. You know how it goes.
 
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Celtavian

Dragon Lord
Re

Sorry Lucius, those are not harm specific defenses. They simply don't allow a touch attack due to distance and are only useable by arcane casters or clerics with certain domains. I listed only defenses that would specifically stop harm from working, not defenses that simply impede the caster from making contact.

You also failed to mention how every single one of the defenses you listed requires that you not enter melee combat at any point in time. I guess that doesn't matter much to you, but I certainly don't think most players or DMs enjoy such a proposition.I guess that means only a caster can defend against a harm.

Not to mention, the person using harm could just as easily fly, levitate, dispel the other persons fly or levitate, etc, etc.

The only counters for harm is SR, high touch AC, spell that turns you into undead, being undead, spell turning, a priest casting counter spell, and a dispel magic either as a counter or if the person is holding the charge.

The other spells you listed will impede the harm from getting to you, but do not stop it. The person casting harm will most likely hold the charge until they can strike you. The above 7 methods actually prevent the spell from working.

I think a bad DM would allow harm to work as is and expect a standard party or encounter to defend against it. Harm as it is makes it easy to kill most warrior types save archers, most cleric types without access to fly or other movement spells, rogues, and just about every monster that doesn't have access to fly, levitate, wall of force, and the other spells you listed with a simple touch attack followed by just about any other attack. Yep, that is what I call balance.
 

Simulacrum

First Post
My ruling is that Harm is actually the big bad ass brother of Destruction. Fort save or 20d6 damage (without save).
-
Half of the current Hitpoints sounds nice but fails it's logic on creatures with less than 100 HP or so.
 

Derren

Hero
Re: Re

Celtavian said:


[...] The only counters for harm is SR, high touch AC, spell that turns you into undead, being undead, spell turning, a priest casting counter spell, and a dispel magic either as a counter or if the person is holding the charge. [...]

Spell turning doesn´t help against Harm because it´s a touch spell which aren´t turned.

And all the solutions above are only doable by a caster. So noncaster are pretty much defenseless against harm except they have a high touch AC (But this doesn´t stop Harm completely because the cleric doesn´t loose the charge) or being undead (which makes you vulnerable to Heal)
 

BMF

First Post
Sorry Lucius, those are not harm specific defenses. They simply don't allow a touch attack due to distance and are only useable by arcane casters or clerics with certain domains. I listed only defenses that would specifically stop harm from working, not defenses that simply impede the caster from making contact.

I think the players are supposed to employ a certain amount of strategy when they confront difficulties. Any strategy that stops the spell from working is valid.

Furthermore, I have actually played characters that survived a harm spell. It doesn't kill you, and any smart character should have some sort of healing and/or contingency plan for when things go suddenly bad.

By the time you are high enough level to be attacked with that spell, you should be high enough level to deal with it some how. I believe the rules allow for that as they are written.

You also fail to mention another way to stop the spell from working. It happened to me just last week:
Take lots of damage.

It happened like this:
My opponent noticed me back up and cast true strike, he became frightened and cast fireball and lightning bolt at me before I could get the harm cast. With a flat zero (0) hp left, I decided to cast cure critical wounds on my next turn instead (thus wasting the true strike, too). A few rounds after that, the NPC escaped; yet another survivor of an attempted harm spell.
 
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AuraSeer

Prismatic Programmer
::WHAM WHAM::

"Start breathing, you stupid horse, or we'll beat you some more!"

::WHAM WHAM WHAM::
 

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