"Je veux mon livre...I WANT my book..."

steeldragons

Steeliest of the dragons
Epic
[title taken from a line in Hocus Pocus with Bette Midler]

But the question endures..."How much DO you want [your] book?"

How important...for fluff OR crunch purposes should the mage's/wizard's...or even sorcerer's or warlock's or witch's spellbook come into play?

If ou are without a spellbook...you cannot study your spells. Hence you are SOL. And/or can one cast something they don't have memorized OUT of their book without destroying it/the page/spell? Does one need a to add to their spellbooks before casting "ritual magics"? Do sorcerers, even with their innate spellcasting, require a book to study and increase their understanding of what they could do? Do warlocks keep spellbooks and add to them, to increase their power outside of their innately patron-gifted "powers"?

There are a hundred questions that it might entail...but the main question remains the same...

How much do you "veux [ton] livre?" <for the non-french speaking public, "How much do you want your book?"> In short, how necessary is the <EDIT: trope, not "tripe"> of a spellbook needed for 5e D&D?

I says a LOT. But this isn't about me. What do y'all think?

--SD
 

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Crazy Jerome

First Post
I want the book for the really powerful stuff, not for the rest. Part of my preference is thematic, while part is practical.

For starters, I want a "real book"--not one watered down game conditions. So I don't want a "travelling spell book" (or several!), each with many spells. I'd rather that the wizard have huge tomes, laying on a table, often two to three feet in height, and quite thick. To these, the wizard must go to do his most powerful effects (or restore them in his mind). Naturally, he wants a tower, guild hall, or other such relatively safe space to store them while away.

OTOH, these can occasionally be stolen, are often unavailable (because the wizard is away), etc. The wizard has plenty of other, lesser power at his command, that is more instrinic to his being and/or readily portable.

Per the standard D&D tropes, the book is too often "all or nothing" for me. This turns the players of wizards into less "mysterious and secretive" into something more "nervous and fearful."
 

Shadeydm

First Post
I miss the sheer joy of spellbook recovery during the course of an adventure. When the wizard finally got to look through and see what spells he might learn it was often the same look I see on a kids face christmas morning.
 

Liquidsabre

Explorer
I think we can still have the excitement with new scrolls and books without being a literal treasure trove of spells hoarded all in one place. I'd like to see a means for gaining *knowledge* that benefits the wizard in some way. An arcane treatise that opens a horizon of new spell mastery, like a book on transmutation that allows the wizard to select up to two new transmutation spells thanks to the arcane lore discovery.

I'd like the wizard to retain the ability to select from different spells each day but only having to rely on books to master new spells.
 


Yora

Legend
I want to be able to play an arcanist without a book, and be able to make settings in which no arcanist has a book. Everything else just doesn't matter to me.
 

mkill

Adventurer
My take: It's assumed that the Wizard carries around a book, but the rules don't bother with it. If you'd rather read your spells from body tattoos, a chain of carved bones, or a scroll of bamboo plates, knock yourself out.
 

howandwhy99

Adventurer
My take: It's assumed that the Wizard carries around a book, but the rules don't bother with it. If you'd rather read your spells from body tattoos, a chain of carved bones, or a scroll of bamboo plates, knock yourself out.
Agreed. For me, it's the content not the container that's of importance here.
 

Croesus

Adventurer
I'd rather that the wizard have huge tomes, laying on a table, often two to three feet in height, and quite thick.

Not quite the way you intended your comment, but I really like the idea of magical tomes as treasure, each holding one or two unique and/or powerful spells. Such tomes could even serve as a necessary component to a ritual.

As for required spellbooks, I'm not a fan. If strictly enforced, wizards are severely gimped. If not enforced, then why bother? I prefer other ways of limiting spellcasters.
 

delericho

Legend
I recommend:

1) Adopt the Simple/Complex spells split from Arcana Evolved, and add a third category of Exotic spells. (Which, exactly like Exotic weapons, are that little bit more powerful, but require additional training to use. Also, when choosing his spells at level-up, the Wizard only gets to choose Simple and Complex spells; Exotic spells must be found as treasure or researched.)

2) Retain the Ritual casting element from 4e. That was one of the best innovations of that game, IMO.

3) "Spellbooks" then contain a mix of spells (of all sorts) and rituals. Obviously, some contain just spells, some just rituals, and some contain a few of each.

4) Make spellbooks extremely hard and costly to duplicate, just like old-style illuminated manuscripts, but moreso. So, yes, a Wizard can copy a new spell from that book he found... but he's better off just keeping the book itself.

5) Do not require the Wizard to have access to his spellbooks to prepare his daily spells (except maybe Exotic spells). However, in order to use a ritual, he does need the appropriate book on hand. That way, a Wizard who loses access to his book doesn't find himself crippled, but there is still value in keeping the books handy.

I believe the effect of this is that Wizards will be keen to find new spellbooks (for the Exotic spells and the rituals), and they have an interesting choice to make (carry the books so they can use the rituals, or leave them home where they're safe?). A Wizard who loses his spellbook won't find himself powerless, and won't absolutely need to get his book back... but he will want to get his book back, because it likely contains his only copy of a given ritual.
 

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