Take A Look At Pathfinder 2's Revamped Magic System!


Wrathamon

Adventurer
They do like rolling dice, in fact their new method for scaling magic weapons is very much like that. +1 weapon being roll an extra damage dice for the damage bonus instead of +1 static. I don’t think they’re willing to go as far as advantage. Advantage suits 5e fine, but PF does want more skilled players (or higher level ones) to have advantages. Thus bounded accuracy is not something they are going for and neither is advantage. There is still going to be static bonuses, they just won’t be as big as they were in PF1 or with as big a number spread.

btw I wasnt suggested they do that ... it was just a hypothetical example. They should make design calls for what is best for their game based on design instincts and player data.

Getting actual play feedback is invaluable and I am sure they know that, which is why they're doing a public playtest. Watching players actually play is more valuable than any survey or random internet post.

I'm a bit curious why they didn't go for a simple inexpensive download playtest document and instead did an arted up printed book series along with the download. Seems like a lot of work, and not like people need proof in their ability to create high production products. They have a very long history of showing that.
 

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Arakasius

First Post
btw I wasnt suggested they do that ... it was just a hypothetical example. They should make design calls for what is best for their game based on design instincts and player data.

Getting actual play feedback is invaluable and I am sure they know that, which is why they're doing a public playtest. Watching players actually play is more valuable than any survey or random internet post.

I'm a bit curious why they didn't go for a simple inexpensive download playtest document and instead did an arted up printed book series along with the download. Seems like a lot of work, and not like people need proof in their ability to create high production products. They have a very long history of showing that.

Well for the art I assume much of it will translate over to the real release corebook. As for the play test document there is a free pdf to download but when they did PF1 they found there was a lot of desire for a printed book because people were going out and printing 450 page document at Kinkos. It doesn’t take long for that to be more expensive than just buying a 40 dollar book, especially since the printed pages will be much lower quality.
 

Jhaelen

First Post
"Wish" in Pathfinder has a material cost (a diamond worth 25K gold) and not an XP cost. "Wish" in 5e has no associated cost other than a 9th level spell slot.
Well, having to find or acquire a diamond worth 25k gold is still a significant restriction. You cannot just cast the spell whenever you feel like it.

I've not really looked into 5e beyond the initial beta phase. So there's no way to restrict the casting of wish spells in any way? Interesting. I wonder how that works out. At least that explains why the Pathfinder 2 designers are fine with the idea, I guess.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
Well, having to find or acquire a diamond worth 25k gold is still a significant restriction. You cannot just cast the spell whenever you feel like it.

I've not really looked into 5e beyond the initial beta phase. So there's no way to restrict the casting of wish spells in any way? Interesting. I wonder how that works out. At least that explains why the Pathfinder 2 designers are fine with the idea, I guess.
Well... “no way to restrict the casting of wish spells” is definitely not how I would describe it. It’s simply that the restriction doesn’t come in the form of a resource cost, beyond the spell slot. In addition to the standard “the DM interprets your wish and has permission to give it unintended consequence if they want” clause, if you use Wish to do anything other than reproduce the effect of a spell of 8th level or lower, you start taking damage every time you cast another spell until you rest, your strength drops to 3 for 2d4 days (days spent doing nothing but rest count as double), and there’s a 33% chance that you’ll never be able to cast Wish again.
 

Jhaelen

First Post
Well... “no way to restrict the casting of wish spells” is definitely not how I would describe it. It’s simply that the restriction doesn’t come in the form of a resource cost, beyond the spell slot. In addition to the standard “the DM interprets your wish and has permission to give it unintended consequence if they want” clause, if you use Wish to do anything other than reproduce the effect of a spell of 8th level or lower, you start taking damage every time you cast another spell until you rest, your strength drops to 3 for 2d4 days (days spent doing nothing but rest count as double), and there’s a 33% chance that you’ll never be able to cast Wish again.
I see. That's rather harsh, actually.

As I said, I have (had) no idea, how wish works in 5e.

But that means I'm again baffled by Pathfinder 2's idea of doing away with any restrictions - unless there are some significant strings attached to casting any level 10 spell, apart from requiring a sufficiently high character level.
 

Yaarel

He Mage
@Ancalagon
The third comment by JRutterbush is very interesting. They speculate that there will be four spell lists (Mental, Spiritual, Material, Vital) and that different classes will get access to a portion of those lists.

The division of spells into four main themes − mental, vital, material, and spiritual − is something I have been doing and posting about for years (mostly at the former wizards .com forum site, but there might be some posts here too).

What they are calling ‘vital’, I call ‘lifeforce’, but the foursome is otherwise identical.

I created this thematic spell list because all D&D spells can be organized by one or more of these four themes. It works excellently because it makes users of magic *feel* different from each other. It is a marriage of flavor and mechanics.
 

Yaarel

He Mage
I feel Wish needs to be a level 10 spell that all mage classes gain.

Wizards get Wish in the sense of Wish.

Bards get Wish in the sense of artistic creation.

Clerics get Wish in the sense of miracles.

And so on. Wish is the summit of all roads to magic.
 

Yaarel

He Mage
My requests for P2 ...

• make psionics normal, where to go for charm, divination, telekinesis-fly-force

• remove polytheistic setting assumptions, keep the cleric class setting neutral

• make gridless theater of mind easy, removing grid-required mechanics, like opportunity attacks
 
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Yaarel

He Mage
I love magic, and 3e is good in many ways at high magic.



A fourth request for P2 ...

I hate the material component, because it always feels like the ingredients are magic, not the mage. I prefer innate magic.

4e and 5e are tolerable because you can replace material component with an implement focus like a wand.

But it would be even better, if a character can use ones own voice, or hands, or eyes, or thought, instead of the material component. Make the magic be ones own character.

Make magic feel more innate. Eschew the material component for players who hate it!



Especially eliminate the ‘costly’ material component that requires gp, or gp disguised as diamonds. Wealth is too dependent on setting, and is *impossible* to balance around. It is a nonsense mechanic that only causes problems for worldbuilder DMs.

Likewise eliminate the xp component, if any. If the entire game revolves arounds ‘spending’ xp to ‘purchase’ permanent features it might work, but for D&D, it just distorts party advancement.



Some bard concepts just *sing* (or recite poetry, or do political oration). Make sure the bard can also eschew the instrumental material component. This is especially important to me because the historically accurate skald − the viking style bard − only sings and never uses musical instruments of any kind. (The skald also associates with a kind of galdr magic that relies on improvisational chanting and translates into D&D as protective ‘abjuration’ magic including healing and resurrection, and even Wish, called ‘need’.)



Using a material component for a ritual that takes about 15 minutes, is fine, however, preferably non-consumable unless it inherently requires consumption, like drinking a glass of wine. In this case, the ritual component might substitute the use of a spell slot.

Even when creating magic items, I still want to keep gp costs out of the balancing formulas. Level appropriate magic and resonance are better mechanics for magic − including magic research.
 
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Yaarel

He Mage
The P2 announcements so far suggest ‘the most common combination is Verbal and Somatic Casting actions for 2 total actions’. I appreciate the absence of a material component. Make the 100% absence of a material component possible.

On a related topic, I worry about most spells requiring ‘two actions’. Where a fighter normally gets one attack per action, the wizard only gets one spell turn. Ironically, in this case, it is a case of exponential fighter, linear wizard! It is easy to imagine the fighter becoming too powerful at the highest levels and the wizard significantly less power than the fighter. Prevent the power imbalance from simply reversing with the all-powerful fighter now the problem.

I want real balance among all the classes at all levels. So players can just pick their favorite archetype, or whatever they are in the mood for, and not feel cheated because of serious imbalances.
 
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