How do we fix the Sorcerer?

Caliban

Rules Monkey
I think that for the most part, sorcerers are fine as is. That being said, at low levels they feel like they run out of "fun stuff" to do faster than other casters.

Personally, I'd give sorcerer's extra known spells based on their origin - similar to a cleric domain.

I also like the idea of allowing them to spend hit dice to regain sorcery points on a short rest that someone mentioned earlier.
 

Inchoroi

Explorer
I never had a sorcerer at my tables, but were it the case AND the player told me that he had issue with the powerlevel of his character, I might do something like this:

1) Sorcery Points: can spend HD (max = to level) to regain same amount on short rest.
2) Spell list: Give access to what I can ''natural arcane list'' aka all arcane and druidic lists.
3) Thematic list: This is where I go into 3PP material. Kobold Press has some highly thematic type of magics that can be added for specific origin at lvl 1 (Dragon magic, Chaos Magic, Angelic Magic, Elemental Magics etc)
I like the idea of spending hit dice to regain sorcery points; might incorporate that. The individual origins should give bonus spells, though; just a couple really thematic ones. The idea of granting the sorcerer all (or maybe just one or two more) of the metamagic abilities are very intriguing, as well. Might have to play with that.

I've had two sorcerers (one of whom was all the way to level 20), and one of my main NPCs is a sorcerer in my campaign, and I've not seen any real issues as far as balance. The draconic bloodline sorcerer and the wizard seemed on par to one another, which was surprising, since the wizard's player was a power-gaming little SoB (still love the guy, though).
 

Kinematics

Explorer
Actually, as Tony Vargas has brought up in another thread, WotC had design goals laid out for when they were building 5E. One bit of summary:
More importantly, we must look beyond the mechanics of the game to focus on the archetypes, literary tropes, and cultural elements that built D&D. We must build a fighter that resonates as a warrior, not one simply cobbled together with mechanics pilfered from D&D's past. The key game experience of D&D lies at the game table. Our work must start by focusing on the key elements of D&D and the unique traits of a tabletop RPG. The mechanics must support those two factors, not the other way around.
I would say that they failed when it came to Sorcerer. More precisely, metamagic was in the game, and they apparently felt that they needed to carry that mechanic over, and the only place they had that could fit it was the Sorcerer class. Thus the Sorcerer became the repository of a mechanic, rather than be built from its design's intent.

Even the way that metamagic interacts with the spell lists make it feel very patched-on. About half of the metamagics are generally useful, and half are extremely situationally useful. Even those that are generally useful heavily bias your spell selection. Unless you completely ignore the metamagics, the mechanics end up being what defines your character, rather than be a tool that supports your character.

Sorcerer is often described as weak, even though it's technically not (if built to metamagic's strengths). It also has one of the highest "unsatisfaction" ratings, alongside Ranger. And I think this is largely because they ignored their own design rule, and created a class for a mechanic, instead of a mechanic for a class. (Even Ranger can be seen in a similar light, where the class seems like a pastiche of mechanics, rather than mechanics properly designed for the class.)


Winterthorn said:
They should have based the sorcerer's spell casting on CON rather than CHA. I see well being and stamina fit the sorcerer's story better than strength of personality. With CON as the sorcerer's "fuel" it would be quite logical for them to be able to burn through a few HD to boost their spell points if they want to risk it.

Additionally, I'm thinking to allow sorcerer's to attune to up to four magic items (all other classes limited to three).
There's no reason to think that a Sorcerer should be better attuned to magic items than anyone else.

As for the stats, hmm... At first I thought it wouldn't work. Every class has its stat proficiencies split up such that one comes from Str/Int/Cha, and the other from Dex/Con/Wis. In general, the latter three are the big defensive stats (what almost all spell saves target), and thus are considered bad choices for offensive potential. However Rogue has Dex as its primary offense, and Cleric has Wis as its primary offense, and neither are considered overpowered simply because of that, despite them gaining both offense and defense from their primary stat.

So having a class with Con as its primary may actually not be such a bad deal. Plus, by having Con as the primary, you're putting your main stat value in a stat that has no associated skills, so you weaken yourself in other ways. And thematically it makes more sense, for a class that's often based around bloodlines, to have their power literally come from the strength of their body.

Int - Wizard
Wis - Cleric, Druid, Ranger
Cha - Bard, Paladin, Warlock
Con - Sorcerer

Yeah, it seems reasonable. Probably makes Paladin/Sorcerer a little easier, and Warlock/Sorcerer a little harder.
 
Actually, as Tony Vargas has brought up in another thread, WotC had design goals laid out for when they were building 5E. One bit of summary:

I would say that they failed when it came to Sorcerer. More precisely, metamagic was in the game, and they apparently felt that they needed to carry that mechanic over, and the only place they had that could fit it was the Sorcerer class. Thus the Sorcerer became the repository of a mechanic, rather than be built from its design's intent.
IDK if that's exactly what happened. For one thing, Metamagic was a series of feats in 3.x, that any caster could learn, and the Wizard got bonus feats to spend on. And, the Sorcerer was a bit /worse/ at meta-magic than prepped casters, taking longer to cast a spells with meta-magic applied.

However, that last, in particular, was the subject of some complaints: the Sorcerer as a natural-talent sort of mage casting spontaneously, feeling out spells rather than learning them formally, would seem, in concept, to be perfectly suited to meta-magic.

So, I suspect they went back to the concept of the Sorcerer (which, as long as I'm speculating wildly, I might as well opine was probably just pulled out of the ether as something to append to the Spontaneous Casting mechanic), and worked from that to "should probably be able to make up magical effects on the fly" then circled back past game elements and selected meta-magic.

All in keeping with their goals. Even if not a result I care for.


Sorcerer is often described as weak, ... has one of the highest "unsatisfaction" ratings, ...I think this is largely because they ignored their own design rule, and created a class for a mechanic, instead of a mechanic for a class.
I think the sorcerer was originally a class created for a mechanic, just in 3.0, not in 5e.

So having a class with Con as its primary may actually not be such a bad deal. Plus, by having Con as the primary, you're putting your main stat value in a stat that has no associated skills, so you weaken yourself in other ways.
You also gain a lot of hp.
 

Winterthorn

Monster Manager
You also gain a lot of hp.
If a sorcerer is considered to have all their power in their blood, then to me this fits. HP is very much a generic measure of stamina/endurance, so magic in the veins can be argued to offer a sorcerer superior combat resilience compared to that of other arcane casters. Thus sorcerers take a tad more beating and still be standing, as part of their shtick lol.

Edit: a number of other fantasy game systems, as well as stories, touch on spell casters burning their health on their magic and needing to recover later. This could have emphasized further in the design of the sorcerer to distinguish it better from other arcane casters. I think it would have been a good direction to take by WotC, if done well.
 
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Kinematics

Explorer
If a sorcerer is considered to have all their power in their blood, then to me this fits. HP is very much a generic measure of stamina/endurance, so magic in the veins can be argued to offer a sorcerer superior combat resilience compared to that of other arcane casters. Thus sorcerers take a tad more beating and still be standing, as part of their shtick lol.
It also gives a better excuse to steal the Consumptive Power feature from the Mystic (as it seems to fit the Sorcerer concept better anyway), and use that as the mechanism for "more than baseline" spellcasting, analogous to the Wizard's Arcane Recovery.

Just a thought, for alternate ways to handle that issue.
 
My personal preference in 4e roles goes: Leader > Controller >>> DM >Defender >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Striker.

But, Role wouldn't have saved it for me. The appeal of the 3.x Sorcerer was build-to-concept, with that vast list of spells to put together a picture of a specific set of magical powers that work, conceptually. 4e & 5e just do that for you, so from anything you can imagine, to dragon magic or wild - wait for a supplement if you want anything else.
I am not sure "build-to-concept" was feasible in 4e (at least inside a class; I think 4e and 5e work better when you decide on your concept and then pick the class that best fits the concept, rather than picking a class and hoping it fits your concept [or that WotC eventually makes a subclass for the class around your concept]).

Thank you for the insight. I agree that they made a lot of strikers (almost seemed like as many strikers as the rest of the classes put together). Still my second favorite casting in 4e class was the warlock and my second favorite melee class was the avenger, so I can't say I was too put out by it.
 
I am not sure "build-to-concept" was feasible in 4e (at least inside a class; I think 4e and 5e work better when you decide on your concept and then pick the class that best fits the concept
That's the way, of course. If a class more-or-less exactly matches your concept, you take it.

3.x, you could always take a combination of classes and a few feats to paint a concept. But two classes, the fighter & Sorcerer, stood out because they gave you a lot of room to customize, and not a lot of room to compromise it because you can't prep new feats or known spells overnight. ;)

In 4e, in essence, all classes were like that, and you could re-fluff powers at whim, which was lovely, but you couldn't climb too far out of your role box, so if you (like me) didn't care for a certain role, you had fewer classes to work with. And, your ability to mix them was limited.

So the sorcerer went from a favorite to a non-starter. I could still build to concept, but a character that would've been a sorcerer became a wizard or whatever...



rather than picking a class and hoping it fits your concept [or that WotC eventually makes a subclass for the class around your concept]).
Which is where we are with the 5e Sorcerer. Innate magic? That's a Sorcerer. Innate magic that's not Dragon or Wild? Wait for a sub-class.

Still my second favorite casting in 4e class was the warlock and my second favorite melee class was the avenger, so I can't say I was too put out by it.
Warlock had a great flavor, and they shade into control totally see it, in spite of the role.

Avenger, though: Maybe you can return the favor and give me some insight into Avengers and their fans. I never grocked the Avenger, how it was supposed to play, precisely, but I've run for players who've had a blast with them, including, perhaps ironically, a build to concept prevent I did, absent said understanding.
??
 
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Li Shenron

Adventurer
Sorcery Points:The key difference between sorcerer and wizard is the use of this unique mana system... and, just like the Monk (esp. Wo4E) and its Ki system, WoTC dropped the ball on it. The Sorcerer just doesn't get enough sorcery points to play with, and they don't regenerate anywhere near quickly enough - the freaking wizard has better stamina then that, courtesy of its Arcane Recovery feature. Add in the inefficiencies of converting spell slots into sorcery points (especially given as the only advantage sorcerers have on wizards vis a vis spells is a bonus cantrip), and this is just a hot mess.
Solution: Make Sorcery Points either recover on a Short Rest instead of a long rest, or have each Origin outfitted with a way to regain sorcerery points more readily - for example, Wild Mages gain some whenever they roll a 1 or a 20 with a spell, whilst Dragon Sorcerers regain some when they take resisted damage. Also, increase the sorcery points at lower levels.

Spell List: Let's be honest; does anyone like the hard limit on spells known that sorcerers labor under? Or the lack of Origin-based bonus spells, something the Cleric and Warlock have?
Solution: Expand the Spells Known limits, or just remove that mechanic entirely. Add Origin-based Bonus Spells to the class.

Thematic Spells: I made this a seperate problem, because it's mostly a Dragon Sorcerer issue at the moment. Everybody knows that unless you play a Fire Dragon Sorcerer, you're basically gimped, because Fire is by far the most over-represented elemental damage type in the sorcerer's spell list.
Solution: Add more spells for the other elements. Heck, bring back the "rainbow damage" spells that sorcerers specialized in during 4th edition.
If I were seriously in charge to "fixing" the Sorcerer (or whatever), I would always do so without changing what is in the PHB. And that means: add new stuff that can help compensate for the lack of something.

So your solution for lack of thematic spells is a no-brainer: just add new spells to the game.

As for the other two, the solution is new feats:

SPELL SCHOLAR:
Prerequisite: The ability to cast at least one spell from spell slots
When you gain this feat, choose four spells from a class spell list you already have access to. You learn those spells and can cast them using your spell slots. If you use a spellbook, you can scribe these spells in it for free.

RELENTLESS SPELLCASTER:
Prerequisite: The ability to use spell points
Your spell points increase by an amount equal to your level when you gain this feat. Whenever you gain a level thereafter, your spell points increase by an additional spell point.

(Note: a feat that changes the recharge time of spell points from long rest to short rest would feel too much like a feat tax to me)
 

Gadget

Explorer
Go back to the flavor text (emphasis mine)...

[SECTION]RAW MAGIC
Sorcerers carry a magical birthright conferred upon them by an exotic bloodline, some otherworldly influence, or exposure to unknown cosmic forces. One can’t study sorcery as one learns a language (1), any more than one can learn to live a legendary life. No one chooses sorcery; the power chooses the sorcerer (2).

Magic is a part of every sorcerer, suffusing body, mind, and spirit with a latent power that waits to be tapped. Some sorcerers wield magic that springs from an ancient bloodline infused with the magic of dragons. Others carry a raw, uncontrolled magic within them, a chaotic storm that manifests in unexpected ways. The appearance of sorcerous powers is wildly unpredictable. Some draconic bloodlines produce exactly one sorcerer in every generation, but in other lines of descent every individual is a sorcerer. Most of the time, the talents of sorcery appear as apparent flukes. Some sorcerers can’t name the origin of their power, while others trace it to strange events in their own lives. The touch of a demon, the blessing of a dryad at a baby’s birth, or a taste of the water from a mysterious spring might spark the gift of sorcery. So too might the gift of a deity of magic, exposure to the elemental forces of the Inner Planes or the maddening chaos of Limbo, or a glimpse into the inner workings of reality. (3)

Sorcerers have no use for the spellbooks and ancient tomes of magic lore that wizards rely on, nor do they rely on a patron to grant their spells as warlocks do. By learning to harness and channel their own inborn magic, they can discover new and staggering ways to unleash that power. (4)

UNEXPLAINED POWERS
Sorcerers are rare in the world, and it’s unusual to find a sorcerer who is not involved in the adventuring life in some way. People with magical power seething in their veins soon discover that the power doesn’t like to stay quiet. A sorcerer’s magic wants to be wielded, and it has a tendency to spill out in unpredictable ways if it isn’t called on. (5)

Sorcerers often have obscure or quixotic motivations driving them to adventure. Some seek a greater understanding of the magical force that infuses them, or the answer to the mystery of its origin. Others hope to find a way to get rid of it, or to unleash its full potential. Whatever their goals, sorcerers are every bit asuseful to an adventuring party as wizards, making up for a comparative lack of breadth in their magical knowledge with enormous flexibility in using the spells they know. (6)[/SECTION]

(1) suggests that sorcerers don't use the "language" of magic (spells) as other spellcasters do. For example, PHB p. 201 says "In casting a spell, a character carefully plucks at the invisible strands of raw magic suffusing the world, pins them in place in a particular pattern, sets them vibrating in a specific way, and then releases them to unleash the desired effect — in most cases, all in the span of seconds." But sorcery isn't pre-defined, it isn't a pattern language, it isn't set in a specific way. Yet the PHB sorcerer relies on spells readily recognizable to wizards. Easy on players – perhaps (more on that below) – but ultimately not matching the flavor text.

(2) suggests that magic, at least the kind sorcerers are tapped into has a will or semi-sentience of its own. What if sorcery were like riding/taming a stallion, using mechanics akin to a battle of wills with a sentient magic item? What does it mean for magic to choose you; do you always detect as magic, do others always recognize you as a spellcaster, or what? Are there unwilling sorcerers? Some of this is worldbuilding, but it could easily translate into mechanics that actually follow up on the promise of this flavor. Again, the mechanics fail.

(3) draws attention to the fact that "most sorcerers are not bloodline based at all! They're instead defined by strange events and involve significant mystery. If a sorcerer's origin is a mystery, should the player be pinning that down OOC? Isn't that a bit jarring narratively? Maybe what matters more than a sorcerer's past is their present ("how do you respond to magic choosing you? embrace it? see it as a curse?") or their future ("what do you seek to accomplish with your gift? pass it on? return it to its source? find the truth of your power's origin?").

(4) makes me wonder: Does Metamagic qualify as "discovering new and staggering ways to unleash that power"? Definitely Twinned Spell is powerful, but I'd argue there's no real sense of discovery on the player's side. Metamagic becomes rote eventually... "Oh, it's longer-reaching. Oh, there's 2 lightning bolts. Oh, you cast it subtly." Something is missing. Instead imagine a sorcerer mixing gust of wind and hypnotic pattern to blow a scintillating cloud into the castle window - a spell combo! Or imagine a sorcerer empowering a fire bolt so it twists around corners or appears as a roaring dragon's head of flame! Or even consider a sorcerer circumventing the usual spell system entirely to do things no bard, warlock, or wizard could dream of – like dropping a gravity well among enemies, slamming them together like those bombs from Guardians of the Galaxy!

(5) Magic wants to be wielded. Unused magic spills out in unpredictable ways. It seethes in a sorcerer's veins. What a powerful statement! If this flavor text were actually reflected in the design, what would it look like? Maybe instead of spell slots, a sorcerer builds up wild surge charges, so the more magic/spells cast, the greater risk of spending a round not casting a spell? Maybe losing concentration is particularly dangerous for a sorcerer? Maybe during a long rest, unused spell slots increase the chance of "strangeness" afflicting the sorcerer? So many opportunities to interpret this powerful flavor text, and yet sorcerer's design misses all of them.

(6) "Narrow focus, but enormous flexibility." Sorcerers aren't swiss army knives, with a utility spell for every occasion like a wizard. A sorcerer is a hatchet with uses limited only by the player's creativity (or perhaps necessity). A sorcerer has a tight theme but can adapt magic within that theme to a wide array of effects; a sorcerer might only know "water magic" but he knows *every* way to use water! And he can change it up on the fly! Instead, the PHB gives us the same old spell system without significant variation. Ice storm is ice storm is ice storm; if you want to use it to freeze a reservoir, well, you're firmly in DM judgment call territory just like any other spellcaster.

The Sorcerer flavor text is describing a class concept that does not actually appear in the PHB, but it's a class concept I recognize from fiction (e.g. A Wizard of Earthsea) & one I'd love to see actually implemented in D&D.
You make some very valid and accurate points that I can't really dispute or disagree on. Sure, I could quibble on some of them, but for me the real kicker is this: it seems to demand a new and wholly different magic subsystem (ala the Mystic and psonics, at the least) for one class in the PHB. I just don't see them doing that in a PHB. Especially when the battle cry was to have it 'feel like' D&D (i.e. be familiar in feel and mechanics to current players while still being accessible to new ones). I remember being mildly surprised that they just made the Ranger a partial caster and left it at that. Then I realized that this was a good way to leverage the existing spell subsystem to add abilities to a class.

At the end of the day, D&D has always done a poor job of giving even a reasonable facsimile of most fantasy characters or archetypes, other than self-referential ones. You really have to squint and turn your head the right way to see the flavor you want in many instances.
 
You make some very valid and accurate points that I can't really dispute or disagree on. Sure, I could quibble on some of them, but for me the real kicker is this: it seems to demand a new and wholly different magic subsystem (ala the Mystic and psonics, at the least) for one class in the PHB. I just don't see them doing that in a PHB. Especially when the battle cry was to have it 'feel like' D&D (i.e. be familiar in feel and mechanics to current players while still being accessible to new ones). I remember being mildly surprised that they just made the Ranger a partial caster and left it at that. Then I realized that this was a good way to leverage the existing spell subsystem to add abilities to a class.

At the end of the day, D&D has always done a poor job of giving even a reasonable facsimile of most fantasy characters or archetypes, other than self-referential ones. You really have to squint and turn your head the right way to see the flavor you want in many instances.
I agree it's a real design challenge! Create a class recognizable as a sorcerer to players of 3rd & 4th edition, yet is distinct enough to merit its own place alongside other arcane spellcasters that don't prepare spells, and btw can it evoke "fantasy novel" magic besides Vancian magic without creating a 30-page subsystem just for one class?

It's a tall order, and the kind of thing that would take a design team with good playtesting feedback & the time to "do it right."

Conceptually, at least, I can see one approach that could be viable: Cantrips Plus.

The idea – which I've dubbed Cantrips Plus – is that cantrips carry the brunt of this hypothetical revised sorcerer's magic. Maybe a sorcerer can learn a few actual spells, but these would probably be via subclass features, not part of the base class.

Each cantrip entry would be much like in the PHB (though there'd be maybe 6-10 more), but would include a section on "Sorcerous Upgrades" for ways a sorcerer can spend Sorcery Points improving/changing the cantrip. These would be in addition to a more universal list like Metamagic. And class/sub-class features could add additional improvements/changes to various cantrips.

However, whenever using a cantrip in an improved/changed way, the sorcerer risks some kind of wild surge which might create an unexpected effect or "short circuit" their ability to use that cantrip until taking a rest.

For other magical effects not encapsulated in the cantrips, they'd be class features...possibly akin to Eldritch Invocations but taking inspiration from some of the 4e sorcerer's stuff. So a Storm sorcerer might gain a flight speed at a high enough level, rather than casting fly; this has the interesting effect of making certain powers iconic to a sorcerer unable to be dispelled – that makes an interesting narrative niche for a sorcerer who is so innately magical that dispel magic can't "extinguish" the magic in their blood.

It's rough form, but I think it would meet all points of the design challenge.
 
Another idea would be to drop spellcasting altogether (or at least pretty much). The sorcerer channels sorcerous energy into one of five subclasses:

1) Your body (totally not the monk sorcerer)
2) Something (like a weapon) you are holding or wearing (totally not the paladin or artificer sorcerer)
3) A blast of energy (totally not the warlock sorcerer)
4) A destructive aura (totally not the storm barbarian sorcerer) [sorcerous enhancements, see below, could allow you to shape the aura into an armor]
5) Your mind (totally not the mystic sorcerer).

Speaking of the warlock, the sorcerer gets sorcerous enhancements (totally not invocations), but unlike the warlock and invocations, the sorcerer gets access to all of them (okay a few will be limited by level and by subclass) rather than "pick one enhancement at level 3", but how many/which ones he/she can use are limited by how many sorcery points he/she has (based somewhat off of PF2's resonance). Some of the enhancements could allow the sorcerer to cast a spell (without having to worry about pesky spell slots) a number of times per long rest (increases as you level up).
 
I agree it's a real design challenge! Create a class recognizable as a sorcerer to players of 3rd & 4th edition, yet is distinct enough to merit its own place alongside other arcane spellcasters that don't prepare spells, and btw can it evoke "fantasy novel" magic besides Vancian magic without creating a 30-page subsystem just for one class?
One thing about how magic works outside of the Dying Earth in the broader SF/Fantasy genre - it's usually either glossed over & subordinate to the plot, or it's simpler & makes more sense than D&D's casting sub-systems typically do. OK, occasionally both.

And 3e & 4e Sorcerers, while similar in concept, were worlds apart in what their mechanical implementations implied about magic & their relationships to it.

In 4e, every arcane caster got his own list of spells, with virtually no overlap. This created an impression that magic was, yes, varied, but also personal - for everyone. No wizard was going to learn every spell in existence, for instance, not even close, not even theoretically.

In 3e, the sorcerer & wizard shared virtually the same list (but for a couple of spells that affected preparation, so meant nothing to the sorcerer, mechanically). Any wizard might learn any wizard/sorcerer spell at any time, and any Sorcerer might develop that same spell independently. That makes magic universal, not personal - especially for the wizard. And, while the sorcerer's limited, infrequently changed spells known makes his magic personal, in one sense, it's still the same magic - the same spells, the same components, the same effects, etc...

Giving the sorcerer exclusive metamagic was actually an inspired solution. It made the sorcerer's magic more intuitive and unique, because he could mess around with it and vary it from the norm. They could even have left them identical spell lists, I suppose.

So it's not so much recognizable that looks to me like the problem. The sorcerer is an innate mage using magic that heavily overlaps with that of the learned wizard, as he was in 3e, and a user of personal magic of the Dragon and Wild varieties as he was in 4e. It's recognizable, it just doesn't deliver on the feel or experience - or, of course, mechanics, inevitably. And that's as much a function of the other caster designs and the spell lists as the Sorcerer design.
 

Unwise

Adventurer
Why is it that 4e fans didn't keep on playing 4e, like us 3rd edition fans kept on playing 3rd edition?
It is surprisingly hard to do. 4e was very reliant on the online character builder and the online monster compendium. It is down right painful to try and make a character with out. Making balanced encounters as a DM is also really time consuming without the right tools. Add to that the difficulty already inherent in making 4e combat maps and it really becomes a hassle. 4e was never DM friendly and the lack of tools just pushes it over the edge into being not worth it.

My group are very combat and tactics focused so insist on sticking with 4e and it is a real pain in the back for me.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
Double the sorcerors metamagic points as it's a shared resource that can either replenish spell slots or fuel metamagic and it's current PHB iteration gives you just enough to recover as many slots as our friend the wizard can recover.

Give him all the meta magic options. No need to gate these through level.

Allow you to spend a steep premium to use multiple metamagic options on a single spell.

I'd say that probably would fix the base sorcerer class.
 

hejtmane

Explorer
I have no clue because I never played 3 or 4 so that is an irrelevant starting point for me; I have no issues with the class now and they have performed in my games.

Back in my 1e days thit was Magic users or Illusionist.

I like how they play now and they work great currently in 5e maybe it is my perspective I mean 1e had a lot less classes and sub classes until Unearth arcana and before that it was all just plain D&D were we had cleric, fighter, thief and magic users.
 

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