D&D (2024) One thing that Rangers need in 1D&D if they will keep spellcasting for rangers.

Mephista

Adventurer
This is one of those Legacy things that I think WotC keeps in the game for like the 6 people across the globe who actually care about components.
Its less because its a legacy thing, and more because its just a massive trope for spellcasters to need to chant in arcane languages or make hand motions.

And, yes, its part of the whole gagged, hands bound wizard schtick.

Look, it does rarely come up in play, but that doesn't mean that its not a necessary part of a standard fantasy story.
 

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DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
Its less because its a legacy thing, and more because its just a massive trope for spellcasters to need to chant in arcane languages or make hand motions.

And, yes, its part of the whole gagged, hands bound wizard schtick.

Look, it does rarely come up in play, but that doesn't mean that its not a necessary part of a standard fantasy story.
But at the same time that fantasy story doesn't come up enough for enough players to warrant giving too much word count and page space to make a system that "works". Especially considering that I would suspect that those for whom these rules are really important all have differing opinions on how these rules should work. So anything "extra" that WotC would try to add to make them more mechanically crunchy or relevant would just be crapped upon by a lot of those players anyway.

It's really no different than the Stealth rules-- every single table wants Stealth to work differently so there's no "complete" version that WotC could write and publish to satisfy anyone. So why bother? Just do the most basic rules you can and let everyone who has their own pre-conceived ideas of how they SHOULD work just use their own rules the way they want it.

I mean look at the Mystic-- that was WotC's attempt at a big and "complete" psionics system to add to the game, and everyone blew raspberries at it. It didn't matter that it was elaborate and involved and mechanically interesting... no one liked it because everyone had their own ideas about how psionics should work. So WotC canned it and hasn't really bothered to make another one like that since.

People SAY they want these deep and involved rulesets to handle these esoteric wings of the game that they have very deep feelings on... but when WotC tries to make it they all say 'Nope!' 'Not that way!' At some point WotC just throws up their hands and says "Look, it's perfectly fine if you want this thing to work in your very specific way! But rather than ask us to try and duplicate it just so everyone else has to also use it... how about you just make it the way you want it yourself and then you can play it that way and be happy?"
 
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DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
Sometimes, I feel that I need to merge 3.5e and 5e PHB/DMG together to get decent rules.
Why aren't you?

You've had eight years with 5E... that seems an awfully long time to go without something that would be useful to you. Better to just do it yourself so you have what you want than to play the game without it and being annoyed the whole time.
 

Clint_L

Hero
This is one of few beef that I have with 5E, ruling not rules.

Please, just write in:
What perception DC is for noticing Verbal components?
At what range does perception gets penalty and how much?
At what range Perception is impossible to succeed?
At what range is Perception auto-success?

Sometimes, I feel that I need to merge 3.5e and 5e PHB/DMG together to get decent rules.
I really don't want that level of granularity in the rules, though. I really like being able to just make a judgment call based on the context and keep the game moving. Because no rule is going to cover all the variables - like lighting, which would have a massive effect on any numbers that they put down. The next thing you know, you've got a huge section just covering the ins and outs of perception, and people are rules lawyering, and the game gets bogged down. Less is more, IMO.

So much faster to just say "make a perception roll" and do a judgment call. As long as you are a fair DM, your players will be fine - what everyone wants is for the game to run smoothly and be fun.
 

As rangers are should be some kind of outdoor, guerrilla, stealth warriors, and WotC obviously cannot make rangers without spells,

Rangers need a new 1st level ability, same as aberrant mind sorcerers and their psionic spells.

New ability:
Covert spellcasting:
Ranger can cast spells that are prepared/known by ranger class with ignoring Somatic, Verbal and Material components that are not consumed in spellcasting.
You do that on the spells themselves and possibly the ranger focus. For example I absolutely oppose Speak With Animals losing the verbal component.
 

Wyckedemus

Explorer
I think one of the balances of wielding magic should be that you are clearly channeling and manifesting the magic, which is not subtle at all. I believe that should be the baseline for casting magic spells. Examples of how that could look are provided below.
  • There should be a visible magical manifestation like sparkles or floating runes, or an otherwise obvious magical effect. Unless the spell specifically says it doesn't (as a design choice for the spell). Every spell has at least one component.
  • Verbal components are clear and enunciated and cannot be whispered. If a spell is designed to quiet, don't give it a Verbal component.
  • Somatic components take visible physical movement of at least one limb. If the spell is purely sound or verbal-based, consider not designing it with a Somatic component.
  • Material components must be on your person (could be in your hand, or in a pouch). Some spells have nothing to do with Material components, and for those, don't add Material components to the design.
  • Exception: You can wield a Magical Focus/Implement with which you are trained, in place of somatic components and material components that have no monetary costs. That said, using the implement does not negate Verbal components or the visible magical , manifestation, and it is not Subtle, as you are waving it around manifesting the magic.
But we all know that some people LOVE playing sneaky, subtle casters. Towards that end, we can build that theme into appropriate archetypes. With the above baselines established, there can be special abilities granted by classes, subclasses, or feats that allow for limited use of "Subtle" casting, that negates the need and display of components that have no monetary costs. Examples below:
  • Sorcerers can use their sorcery points via Metamagic to cast Subtle Spell" of any sort.
  • Wizard subclasses that are traditionally sneaky influencers and liars (like Enchanters and Illusionists) can have a subclass ability that lets them cast spells from their chosen Specialty School as Subtle, maybe PBx/day.
  • Rangers under the effect of their 13th level "Nature's Veil" ability can cast 1 spell on that same turn in a Subtle fashion.
  • Arcane Tricksters may have an ability to cast a spell in a Subtle fashion, whether PBx/day, or perhaps make a Sleight of Hand ability check as a bonus action with a DC equal to 10+ spell level.
  • Psions/Mystics may have a Subtle class ability that represents their ability to manifest mind magic with no other components. What is the balancing factor there? Not sure.
  • Or if you want the Subtle option to be available to more casters outside of typical archetypes, maybe create a feat that mimics Subtle Spell, PBx/day, and maybe some classes/subclasses get it as a class ability.
 
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ECMO3

Hero
As rangers are should be some kind of outdoor, guerrilla, stealth warriors, and WotC obviously cannot make rangers without spells,

Rangers need a new 1st level ability, same as aberrant mind sorcerers and their psionic spells.

New ability:
Covert spellcasting:
Ranger can cast spells that are prepared/known by ranger class with ignoring Somatic, Verbal and Material components that are not consumed in spellcasting.

I don't agree with this ability, nor the trope that Rangers need to be outdoor guerilla stealth warriors.

Thematically I think Rangers should cast spells like everyone else and if they want to be a stealth warrior - well that is what martial weapon proficiency and expertise are for ..... but if I want to take their specialization in performance and use wands, scrolls and other magic items, that should be supported too.

Metamagic adept or a sorcerer multiclass should remain available for Rangers who want subtle spell casting. Maybe you can roll it into a subclass instead of another ability, although it is kind of powerful and I would say this should be the primary ability of the subclass and should either require a bonus action to activate (so an action to cast the spell and a bonus action to make it subtle) or it should be limited in uses to PB per day or both.
 
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mellored

Legend
Sounds like a subclass.

Primal Stalker

3: increase casting time by 1 minute to cast in stealth.
6: casting a non-hostile spell does not break stealth.
10: increase time is now 6 seconds.
14: can cast any spell without breaking stealth
 

Yaarel

He Mage
I think one of the balances of wielding magic should be that you are clearly channeling and manifesting the magic, which is not subtle at all. I believe that should be the baseline for casting magic spells.
That obviousness of magic might make sense to some cultures.

But in Nordic cultures, and many of the cultures across Africa, the spellcaster can cast a spell accidentally − without even the spellcaster realizing it.

Talk about subtle.

In Nordic magical traditions, the mind manifests the magical effect, and can accidentally do magic when the mind wanders with stray thoughts.

Part of a formal magical training is learning how to NOT cast spells.
 

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