• The VOIDRUNNER'S CODEX is coming! Explore new worlds, fight oppressive empires, fend off fearsome aliens, and wield deadly psionics with this comprehensive boxed set expansion for 5E and A5E!

D&D 5E Free Upcasting By Tier: A House-Rule

cbwjm

Seb-wejem
I don't want actual higher-level slots because then you can cast more higher leveled spells. But free upcasting keeps 1st-level slots using 1st-level spells.
I forgot to mention it in my last post, but this is actually what I like about your idea. I don't really think I'd mind too much if players are able to throw around 10 fireballs at level 11, but your way allows lower level spells to have more punch while still requiring them to be lower level spells.

I also missed responding to your earlier post, I think limiting it to 5th level spells might be okay, but I'm also not sure how many 6th level+ spells have updating. Might be worth checking that out.

I'd probably also switch the warlock over to regular spell slots if your were moving this way. Remove mystic arcanum and just let them learn and cast higher level spells.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
I'd probably also switch the warlock over to regular spell slots if your were moving this way. Remove mystic arcanum and just let them learn and cast higher level spells.
Just had a discussion with a player about this, it does screw over warlocks a bit unless I change things--not that we mind, really. ;)
 

Horwath

Legend
I believe that this idea might return the problem of linear fighter-quadratic wizard.

As a special feature for few spells it might be good, but overall it would be too much.

And I agree that up casting sucks on most spells, especially direct damage.

My rule for upcasting would be +3 dice for single target, +2 dice for AoE spells per increased spell level.

I.E. scorching ray should start with 2 rays for 3d6 instead of 3 rays for 2d6, then every level it is extra ray for 3d6.

fireball should get +2d6 per spell level(10d6 for 4th level to 20d6 for 9th level)

cure spells should be 2 dice per level. Cure wounds 2d6 per level, healing word 2d4 per spell level.
 

DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
I believe that this idea might return the problem of linear fighter-quadratic wizard.
I still find it funny when people say this. It was never an issue and I never even heard of it until people mentioned it on EnWorld a few years ago when I joined.

The amount of power increase isn't really that much when you compare the challenges the PCs face at higher levels. In fact, it makes lower level spell feel viable again instead of just focusing on higher level spells all the time or wasting higher level slots to try to upcast and make lower level spells viable.

Finally, it reverses the power nerf of things like concentration and repeated saves.
 

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing (He/They)
Eh, it's a bit overpowered for my tastes. Out of curiosity, what was the driver for this house-rule? Was there a problem you were trying to fix, or did you just want to make spellcasters quadratic again for flavor/style reasons? (Both are valid reasons to make a house-rule; I'm not gonna argue. I'm just trying to understand.)
 

Stalker0

Legend
I still find it funny when people say this. It was never an issue and I never even heard of it until people mentioned it on EnWorld a few years ago when I joined.

The amount of power increase isn't really that much when you compare the challenges the PCs face at higher levels. In fact, it makes lower level spell feel viable again instead of just focusing on higher level spells all the time or wasting higher level slots to try to upcast and make lower level spells viable.

Finally, it reverses the power nerf of things like concentration and repeated saves.
If you feel that spellcasters are unpowered in high level 5e and wish to increase them, this seems a solid way to do it.

But if your saying that this is not a large increase in spellpower at higher levels.... I'm sorry, I have to disagree. Now it's not necessarily going to break the game, but a spellcaster in a game with this houserule is going to feel much more powerful than a spellcaster without the rule.

Now I can already see this thread going in the direction to try and justify the "weakness" of spellcasters in 5e...and that's just not going to work on these boards. In general, the community seems firmly in the camps that either spellcasting is still stronger than martials at high levels, or they are reasonably balanced. The notion that spellcasters are underpowered at high levels is not a commonly held belief on the boards based on the years of previous discussions on the topics.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
If you feel that spellcasters are unpowered in high level 5e and wish to increase them, this seems a solid way to do it.

But if your saying that this is not a large increase in spellpower at higher levels.... I'm sorry, I have to disagree. Now it's not necessarily going to break the game, but a spellcaster in a game with this houserule is going to feel much more powerful than a spellcaster without the rule.

Now I can already see this thread going in the direction to try and justify the "weakness" of spellcasters in 5e...and that's just not going to work on these boards. In general, the community seems firmly in the camps that either spellcasting is still stronger than martials at high levels, or they are reasonably balanced. The notion that spellcasters are underpowered at high levels is not a commonly held belief on the boards based on the years of previous discussions on the topics.
Noncasters also advance in power at higher levels, often with larger strides than casters. A lot of that of that can be traced back to the impact of bounded accuracy making martial gains pack a bigger punch thanks to the AC failing to scale like saves & making sure monsters with high level spells are still doable for dramatically underleveled parties when it comes to the spell alongside slot progression slowdowns & upcast at cost without bumping the scaling
 

And why not simply do it this way.
Whenever cantrips are augmented in damage
This means Level 5, 11 and 17, all spell that are 1 or more level lower than you highest level spell improves damage by +1 die at 5th level (1st and 2nd level), +2 dice at 11th (1st through 5th) and +3 dice at 17th (1st through 8th level).

Easy to remember and to apply. This way Magic Missile and other spells will always be relevant compared to cantrips but not overwhelmingly so.
At 17th level, a magic missile will do 6d4+6 damage, A fire ball 11d6 and a Delayed blast fireball would do 14d6.
Compared to meteor swarm... Only 9th level spells would never be boosted. Which is fine.
 

Stalker0

Legend
Noncasters also advance in power at higher levels, often with larger strides than casters. A lot of that of that can be traced back to the impact of bounded accuracy making martial gains pack a bigger punch thanks to the AC failing to scale like saves & making sure monsters with high level spells are still doable for dramatically underleveled parties when it comes to the spell alongside slot progression slowdowns & upcast at cost without bumping the scaling
Agreed. My high level experience has been that in combat, the martials perform fine. They do plenty of damage, and their tough, and a lot of monsters have things like legendary resistance or magic resistance to weaken spells.

However, narratively....casters rule. They are handling the divinations, the travel, they are dispelling the key magic defenses. So more and more "screen time" shifts to the casters to handle all of the things around combat.

So in general casters seem quite strong at high levels, and I still consider them superior to martials in terms of "amount of game time I am contributing to the story". But combatively i think they are well balanced. But casters weaker than martials....yeah I just don't see that, and again discussion on the board suggests that the board as a whole feels that way too.
 

JiffyPopTart

Bree-Yark
And why not simply do it this way.
Whenever cantrips are augmented in damage
This means Level 5, 11 and 17, all spell that are 1 or more level lower than you highest level spell improves damage by +1 die at 5th level (1st and 2nd level), +2 dice at 11th (1st through 5th) and +3 dice at 17th (1st through 8th level).

Easy to remember and to apply. This way Magic Missile and other spells will always be relevant compared to cantrips but not overwhelmingly so.
At 17th level, a magic missile will do 6d4+6 damage, A fire ball 11d6 and a Delayed blast fireball would do 14d6.
Compared to meteor swarm... Only 9th level spells would never be boosted. Which is fine.
Also a good suggestion.

My feel for 5e is that non damage spells remain relevant through the levels ive seen in play (14th lvl) but low level damage spells are usually not worth the slot once the cantrips scale to do similar damage.
 

Remove ads

Top