Make SPELLS Balanced


Mind Mage
I kinda like them as well but the implementation of a cradle to grave primary caster attribute at will no resource cost attack that scales by character level with no attached item responsible* is just too good in too many ways.
The itemlessness is precisely what makes the cantrip feel innately magical.

To use an item like a mundane crossbolt or even an enhanced crossbolt feels more like buying hardware, and feels less like doing magic.

The always-on capability of cantrips actualizes a talent for magic and helps the character feel personally magical.

I stopped playing 3e for two reasons: convoluted gaming imbalance generally, but also its lack of cantrips specifically.

I like magical characters and require a game whose mechanics express magical flavors well.

The DoT type spells that deal critical damage type round after round is one example,
The Damage-Over-Time spells are inherently problematic because focus fire is a more effective tactic, by far.

There can still be − and are − spells that grant or swap one kind of damage type for an other.

the value of limited use scrolls & wands being nullified if those aren't top shelf or problematically balanced is another.
If a "consumable" magic item has charges, such as ten uses of a specific cantrip, that would be valuable enough. As a player, I would appreciate such an item as a treasure.

As a DM, its consumability allows for a less personal more industrial magic, that magic items can purchase. It is an expendable resource.

A one-time scroll use, for a noncombat ritual or even a combat slot spell that any character can cast, can be purchasable as a service. A player character can go to a Sage to prepare such a scroll for a fee. And if the Sage is willing to do the magic, then the item from this Sage will work for the character as a consumable magic item. One would still need to attune to the magic from the Sage to cast such a scroll successfully.

If a character finds such a scroll randomly, one can try attune it, to see if it will work. DM decides. This allows Rogues and Fighters the opportunity to one-off spells.

A caster can first see if it is possible to attune a certain scroll, and if so, attempt to translate its magic style into the ones own personal magic style, in order to acquire it as a known spell for the spellbook or its equivalent. Normally, spellbooks are for noncombat rituals. But the Wizard class specifically can add combat slot spells to their spellbook.

Personally, I would use certain skills to determine if the character can cast certain spell themes successfully, from any ritual instructions or scroll:
• Arcane: force, force constructs, telekinetic flight, metamagic
• Nature: elementalism (earth, water, air, fire)
• Survival: plant
• Animal Handling: beast, shapeshifting, body, athletics
• Medicine: healing
• Insight: mind, enchantment
• Religion: divination, teleportation, planarity

Having wands recharge rather than deplete just turbo charges the problem cantrips apply to them.
I see two kinds of magic items: permanent and consumable.

A consumable wand can run out of charges − something like a magitech memory stick for several scrolls.

A permanent wand is an inherently valuable magical item − an entity − an event.

If casters started with a cantrip wand(s) that let them cast/power the lowest tier of cantrips & needed to get wands rings or whatever to cast later tiers they would have treasure that was important to them. If casters only had x cabtrip casts per Y-period that too would provide an important need in the form of equipment to extend that with more casts of something. If base cantrip damage was trash it would provide room for equipment to improve that. None of those are true though & cantrips just wind up being a glut of good that overwhelms a lot of stuff
Cantrips are valuable. There are many good ones to choose from. Even high level casters only have a few cantrip. Magic items that grant cantrips are useful and valuable.

But the ability to cast cantrips without items is what makes the character oneself feel magical.

* Yes I know a player technically needs a focus item but that's just a pass/fail boolean thing not a wand or whatever acquired through adventuring or similar. Barring edge cases like "you wake up in prison" scenarios almost always available with no need to consider it.
Recently but strongly:

I want spell descriptions to delete the spell components. These Verbal-Somatic-Material components are normally ignored, inflexibly precise, convoluted, and obsolete.


There should be only the "spell focus". There can many different kinds of focuses.
• Implement (such as magitech wand, mentally imbued item, etcetera)
• Symbol (holy symbol, tattoo, etcetera)
• Familiar
• Ingredient (material components, classical protoscience, plants, rocks, animal products, potions, herbal bags, etcetera)
• Gestures (somatic components, dance, handsigns, nose-wiggle, etcetera)
• Thought (visualization, prayer, trance, etcetera)
• Voice (spontaneous song, artistically crafted poem, traditional verbal formula, etcetera)

Each class or character concept can have signature method to cast spells: a personal spell focus.
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