Why does Wizards of the Coast hate Wizards?

dnd4vr

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
Very much disagree with this. The scaling of spells led directly to the whole LFQW problems in earlier editions.
The whole LFQW thing was never an issue for any of the games I played in, in any edition, for myself at least (and no one else every complained about it to my knowledge).

It wasn't until I started playing 5E and heard it mentioned here that I even learned of it! I actually had to google it to even find out what the heck people were complaining about LOL!

So, for the people who do/did take issue with it, that's fine. But for people like myself who never found it to be a problem, the idea of upcasting is harsh.

How many times have I heard people complain on these boards and in our own game about spells losing some of their value at higher levels? More than I can count or care to remember.

The answer, upcast.
The problem, then you can't use those slots for spells of those levels when you want to use them.

I think they could have had spells scale, even it it wasn't as powerful as earlier editions.
 

Ashrym

Hero
How many times have I heard people complain on these boards and in our own game about spells losing some of their value at higher levels? More than I can count or care to remember.

The answer, upcast.
The problem, then you can't use those slots for spells of those levels when you want to use them.
Some spells actually upscale nicely (long duration, increasing area size spells, multiple targets) while others gain value from the DC increase without touching the level. Both DC and scaling up to a higher spell slot can benefit at the same time.

It's not that there isn't value in upscaling. Not all spells upscale equally.

Usually higher level spells are more powerful than lower level spells in the same slots, though. Upscaling is usually option "B" for classes that are tighter on spells available to cast. Knowing which spells to cover various goals when a character has fewer options is a system mastery issue.

In the end, not all low level spells are going to be as useful at higher levels. C'est la vie. ;)

I think they could have had spells scale, even it it wasn't as powerful as earlier editions.
They have that. Upscale. *ducks :p
 

dnd4vr

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
Some spells actually upscale nicely (long duration, increasing area size spells, multiple targets) while others gain value from the DC increase without touching the level. Both DC and scaling up to a higher spell slot can benefit at the same time.

It's not that there isn't value in upscaling. Not all spells upscale equally.

Usually higher level spells are more powerful than lower level spells in the same slots, though. Upscaling is usually option "B" for classes that are tighter on spells available to cast. Knowing which spells to cover various goals when a character has fewer options is a system mastery issue.

In the end, not all low level spells are going to be as useful at higher levels. C'est la vie. ;)
The bolded part is definitely an issue. More often than not upscaling just isn't worth the higher level slot IMO.

They have that. Upscale. *ducks :p
LOL you had better duck! ;)

Seriously, though. Consider a spell like Magic Missile. I get it. If you scaled it without upscaling, you would get 11 missiles maximum or around 50 damage with no attack roll or save, for a level 1 spell. That is pretty powerful, really I think. But would 6 missiles, around 21 damage, be unreasonable at 17th level?

My idea, since cantrips scale with tier, would be to upscale spells one level for each tier.

Tier 1 (1-4) would be first and second level spells.
Tier 2 (5-10) would be third through fifth level spells.
Tier 3 (11-16) would be sixth through eighth level spells.

Each time you reach a new tier, your spells gain one spell level. At maximum 17th-20th levels, it would look like this:
First and second level spells are cast 3 levels higher.
Third through fifth are cast 2 levels higher.
Sixth through eight are cast 1 level higher.

Or you could limit it even more:
1st and 2nd are 3 levels higher
3rd and 4th are 2 levels higher
5th and 6th are 1 level higher

Or whatever. Think of it as free upscaling. When you reach tier 2, your level 1 and 2 spells are one level better. For Magic Missile, you get one more missile for free. When you reach tier 3, you get another, and at tier 4 you get 6.

I don't think this is too powerful really, but it is just something I am throwing out there. It does mean something like a cure wounds cast as 1st level by a 17th level caster would upscale 3 levels, making it 4d8 for free instead of 1d8... Is that too much? I don't know, I'll have to sleep on it. :)
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
How is it fun?

Find a magic sword and you are one short rest away from using it. Find a spell scroll and you are need a long rest at minimum, and lose the scroll.

There are plenty of ways to have a learning mechanic for wizards that is more flavorful than the atavistic trope of time, money, special inks and so forth.

Fight a blue dragon, and the genius wizard has an epiphany about magical lightning and learns the Lightning Spell.

Put in a mechanic where a wizard could learn a spell from observing it being cast.

To represent wizardly training give magical maneuvers similar to the Fighter Battlemaster....

In fantasy there is often a trope about trained wizards vs hedge wizard/ untrained caster.

The autodidact sorc gets metamagic, the bard learns Magical Secrets from their college....
meanwhile wizarding school is like a bad private college, you pay too much, do not learn much and are followed by student loans for the rest of your life ( scribbing costs).
Is role playing the Devry Education experience truly some people’s idea of a good time.
Lol If Devry provided the direct equivalent of the best Ivy League education...sure.

But beyond what I’m seeing as mostly wild hyperbole in your post, yes, it is fun to rifle through every spellbook I pick off an enemy wizard, trade books and scrolls of spells I already know with other wizards, sometimes have to choose casting a spell in a clutch moment from a scroll or saving it to scribe later, and have the biggest potential spell list in the game. My rogue/wizard only has level 2 Spellcasting, and already has about as much Spellcasting as the Paladins, before we factor in rituals.

It’s very, very, fun.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
And it is a sad fact IMO that you have to "upcast" sleep using a 6th level slot just to have a 50/50 shot. Absolutely pathetic.

Cast Disintegrate instead and you have about an 80% chance of defeating the ogre (assuming you don't want to keep him alive, that is...).


Very rarely have I found it to be worth it. Occasionally, sure, but not often.
Sleep is poorly designed in 5e, upcasting isn’t IMO.

Firstly, damage spells don’t scale quite as much as they could, so upcasting damage spells is generally a secondary tactic.

Many spells gain power without upcasting, as others have pointed out, because the character’s bonuses have increased.

Other spells have much longer durations, or target more creatures, larger areas, etc, when upcast. Hold Person doubles in power when you cast it on two creatures.

I find it's incredibly important with spells known limitations.
This, yeah.
 

dnd4vr

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
Sleep is poorly designed in 5e, upcasting isn’t IMO.

Firstly, damage spells don’t scale quite as much as they could, so upcasting damage spells is generally a secondary tactic.

Many spells gain power without upcasting, as others have pointed out, because the character’s bonuses have increased.

Other spells have much longer durations, or target more creatures, larger areas, etc, when upcast. Hold Person doubles in power when you cast it on two creatures.
Well, if you want to keep upcasting/upscaling, then a LOT of spells were poorly designed IMO.

The spells that are "more powerful" because the bonuses improve don't have much of an improvement.

The more I think about it the more I like a change to get rid of upcasting. Tying it into the ties works as well.

Sometime similar to my earlier proposal:

Starting at 5th level, your 1st level slots are cast as 2nd level spells.
Starting at 11th level, your 1st and 2nd level slots are cast as 3rd level spells
Starting at 17th level, your 1st, 2nd, and 3rd level spells are cast as 4th level spells.
 

Undrave

Adventurer
Well, if you want to keep upcasting/upscaling, then a LOT of spells were poorly designed IMO.

The spells that are "more powerful" because the bonuses improve don't have much of an improvement.

The more I think about it the more I like a change to get rid of upcasting. Tying it into the ties works as well.

Sometime similar to my earlier proposal:

Starting at 5th level, your 1st level slots are cast as 2nd level spells.
Starting at 11th level, your 1st and 2nd level slots are cast as 3rd level spells
Starting at 17th level, your 1st, 2nd, and 3rd level spells are cast as 4th level spells.
That's WAY too strong of a boost.

What about the level 1 spell yo get to cast At-Will at later levels?

If you want to do auto-upcasting you should at the very least model it on the Warlock. Less spell slots, but they recover on short rests. Otherwise nobody's gonna play a Warlock when the Wizard gets a better spell list and more spell slots to upcast with in an average day (i.e., not the 8 encounter one).

Furthermore, some spells don't even have an upcasting option, becoming traps instead of reliable spells you can simply cast more often.
 

dnd4vr

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
That's WAY too strong of a boost.

What about the level 1 spell yo get to cast At-Will at later levels?

If you want to do auto-upcasting you should at the very least model it on the Warlock. Less spell slots, but they recover on short rests. Otherwise nobody's gonna play a Warlock when the Wizard gets a better spell list and more spell slots to upcast with in an average day (i.e., not the 8 encounter one).

Furthermore, some spells don't even have an upcasting option, becoming traps instead of reliable spells you can simply cast more often.
Yeah, it might be too much, I was just throwing it out there.

I wouldn't model it after Warlocks. To me, spells are a secondary feature for warlocks. The edritch invocations are more important to me anyway.

Maybe I could allow wizards to pick a spell at those levels that would increase with level? That way it wouldn't be all the spells they have prepared, only a select few. And like with other casters, I could allow the player to swap out the chosen spell when they level (or following the new UA, on a long rest. ;) ).
 

Undrave

Adventurer
Yeah, it might be too much, I was just throwing it out there.

I wouldn't model it after Warlocks. To me, spells are a secondary feature for warlocks. The edritch invocations are more important to me anyway.

Maybe I could allow wizards to pick a spell at those levels that would increase with level? That way it wouldn't be all the spells they have prepared, only a select few. And like with other casters, I could allow the player to swap out the chosen spell when they level (or following the new UA, on a long rest. ;) ).
You could model it on the Warlock but just give them a few more spell slots to cover for the missing invocation features.
 

tetrasodium

Explorer
Starting at 5th level, your 1st level slots are cast as 2nd level spells.
Starting at 11th level, your 1st and 2nd level slots are cast as 3rd level spells
Starting at 17th level, your 1st, 2nd, and 3rd level spells are cast as 4th level spells.
I like the spirit of the idea, but as written it's just way too powerful & only gets worse the further it goes. I'm not really sure how it could be fixed to not be broken or stomping on the toes of sorcerer/warlock & even linking it to hit dice doesn't seem to help much.
 

dnd4vr

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
You could model it on the Warlock but just give them a few more spell slots to cover for the missing invocation features.
I could use the warlock spell progression but maybe increase the slots by 1 compared to the warlock. I don't know if that would be enough, but it seems like it would be okay for free upcasting.

I don't know I'll have to talk our group on Saturday and bounce some ideas around until then.
 

dnd4vr

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
I like the spirit of the idea, but as written it's just way too powerful & only gets worse the further it goes. I'm not really sure how it could be fixed to not be broken or stomping on the toes of sorcerer/warlock & even linking it to hit dice doesn't seem to help much.
I think limiting it to a chosen spell starting at 5th level (must be 1st) that gets free upcasting to 2nd.

Then at 11th level, you get to pick another (1st or 2nd) that gets free upcasting to 3rd.

Finally, at 17th, you pick a third spell (1st to 3rd level) that gets free upcasting to 4th.

When you level, you can swap out your upcasted chosen spell but it must be the same level. If you want to follow the UA, make it on a short rest.

This way, a Wizard (or even give the ability to other casters) can have three free upcasted spells, to a maximum of 4th level ability.

EDIT: an option to link it to HD, is you can spend your hit dice when casting a spell to upcast it by one level per HD spent, to a maximum spell level you can cast. You regain HD spent in this fashion after completing a long rest.

Ex. an 11th level caster could spend five HD to upcast a 1st level spell to 6th.

Of course, if you spend HD for other features, you have fewer for free upcasting.
 
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Gladius Legis

Adventurer
Very much disagree with this. The scaling of spells led directly to the whole LFQW problems in earlier editions. Not only did your wizard get more powerful spells but most of the spells he cast got more powerful too.
On top of this: The one way that spells do scale automatically in 5e is spell DC. In 3.5, spell level determined DC (and there was a metamagic option, Heighten Spell, that allowed 5e-style upcasting of a spell specifically to raise the DC of that spell), but in 5e it scales automatically with proficiency bonus and caster stat.

So with DCs scaling in 5e automatically, having the actual effects (damage, etc.) of those spells also scaling automatically as they did before would've been waaaaaaay too much.

And I prefer DCs scaling automatically as opposed to the actual effects of those spells doing so because it makes spells from half-casters and third-casters actually worth a flip all the way through. That's why half-casting is good in 5e but was nigh-worthless in 3.5.

Personally, I think cantrips might actually level up too quickly. Not so much for wizards, but, for clerics and druids, it turns them both into pew pew casters too often.
I've long thought cantrips should scale only once, at Lv. 11.
 
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tetrasodium

Explorer
I've long thought cantrips should scale only once, at Lv. 11.
Other than eldritch blast breaking the rules of cantrips getting extra dice instead of extra attacks & acting like the extra attack from fighter but getting linked to character rather than class level... why? What about daily driver cantrips like firebolt/sacred flame/ray of frost/dissonant whispers/etc scaling do you see as a problem?

Sure all those dice might be great against low AC baddies, but weapon attacks add stat mod & scale with extra attacks that each add the statmod. Even if your comparing a fire dragon sorcerer with a +3 focus item casting firebolt & 20 to a nonfeated fighter with a +3 longsword @20your comparing 4d10+3+cha to [1d10+3+ability mod]*4 & the law of averages works in the fighter's favor on top of using modifiers repeatedly
 

Salthorae

Imperial Mountain Dew Taster
I've long thought cantrips should scale only once, at Lv. 11.
Interesting.

I've always found that by the time my groups get to 11th, the only time cantrips get used in combat are if all their other spells are gone, the threat isn't big enough to waste a resource on which usually just gets handwaved anyway at that point, or to do something like Minor Illusion cover/concealment.



Also - I think we're all missing the point here.

WotC obviously has self-esteem issues. So the Wizards from the Coast hate on Wizards to gang up with everyone else on the poor wizards, to make them (WotC) feel better about themselves being OP wizards. ;)
 
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Gladius Legis

Adventurer
Other than eldritch blast breaking the rules of cantrips getting extra dice instead of extra attacks & acting like the extra attack from fighter but getting linked to character rather than class level... why? What about daily driver cantrips like firebolt/sacred flame/ray of frost/dissonant whispers/etc scaling do you see as a problem?

Sure all those dice might be great against low AC baddies, but weapon attacks add stat mod & scale with extra attacks that each add the statmod. Even if your comparing a fire dragon sorcerer with a +3 focus item casting firebolt & 20 to a nonfeated fighter with a +3 longsword @20your comparing 4d10+3+cha to [1d10+3+ability mod]*4 & the law of averages works in the fighter's favor on top of using modifiers repeatedly
OK, now do Lv. 17-19, when the cantrip has its last scaling but the Fighter is still on 3 attacks/round. Assuming 20s in relevant stat:
Longsword Fighter: (1d10+3+5)*3 = 40.5
Fire Dragon Sorcerer: 4d10+3+5 = 30

Or, hey, let's go back to Lv. 5, where the majority of games are taking place, but take away the magic weapon/focus and assume 16s in the relevant stat:
Longsword Fighter: (1d10+3)*2 = 17
Fire Dragon Sorcerer: 2d10+3 = 14

Is the Fighter ahead of the Sorcerer's cantrip? Yes. Is the Fighter ahead by enough to make up for the fact the Sorcerer is also a full caster? That's a harder case to make.
 

tetrasodium

Explorer
Is the Fighter ahead of the Sorcerer's cantrip? Yes. Is the Fighter ahead by enough to make up for the fact the Sorcerer is also a full caster? That's a harder case to make.
Ithis whole tangent is kind of irrelevant to the thread, but don't try to compare the two in isolation. don't forget to ask if that is "enough" on top of the fact that a fighter is a heavu armor d10 class with extra feats various fighter & fighter archtype features By using a dragon sorcerer instead of a wizard or some other sorcerer I avoided stacking the deck by having the statmod on both.

It sounds like you think it should be more like this
Longsword Fighter: (1d10+3)*2 = 17
Fire Dragon Sorcerer: 1d10+3 = 9.5

That about the gist of your point?...
 

Gladius Legis

Adventurer
Ithis whole tangent is kind of irrelevant to the thread, but don't try to compare the two in isolation.
I'm not. You were.

It sounds like you think it should be more like this
Longsword Fighter: (1d10+3)*2 = 17
Fire Dragon Sorcerer: 1d10+3 = 9.5

That about the gist of your point?...
Considering, again, the Sorcerer is a full caster, yes, that does look a lot better.
 

Ashrym

Hero
I'm good with spells not scaling.
OK, now do Lv. 17-19, when the cantrip has its last scaling but the Fighter is still on 3 attacks/round. Assuming 20s in relevant stat:
Longsword Fighter: (1d10+3+5)*3 = 40.5
Fire Dragon Sorcerer: 4d10+3+5 = 30

Or, hey, let's go back to Lv. 5, where the majority of games are taking place, but take away the magic weapon/focus and assume 16s in the relevant stat:
Longsword Fighter: (1d10+3)*2 = 17
Fire Dragon Sorcerer: 2d10+3 = 14

Is the Fighter ahead of the Sorcerer's cantrip? Yes. Is the Fighter ahead by enough to make up for the fact the Sorcerer is also a full caster? That's a harder case to make.
At 5th level that dragon sorcerer is just 2d10 for 11 because elemental affinity gives the bonus at 6th level. At 6th level the fighter can include a 2nd ASI.

Why does your example add subclass features for the sorcerer and not the fighter? Or skip fighting style? Action surge? Feats? Why is the fighter using a long sword two handed instead of a one handed with a shield, or using a 2 handed weapon? Why no ASI for the fighter at 4th level?

I'm changing the comparison. 5th level.

Fighter (1d8+4+2)*2 = 21 or (2d6+4)*2 = 22
Sorcerer 2d10 = 11
 

Gladius Legis

Adventurer
At 5th level that dragon sorcerer is just 2d10 for 11 because elemental affinity gives the bonus at 6th level. At 6th level the fighter can include a 2nd ASI.

Why does your example add subclass features for the sorcerer and not the fighter? Or skip fighting style? Action surge? Feats? Why is the fighter using a long sword two handed instead of a one handed with a shield, or using a 2 handed weapon? Why no ASI for the fighter at 4th level?

I'm changing the comparison. 5th level.

Fighter (1d8+4+2)*2 = 21 or (2d6+4)*2 = 22
Sorcerer 2d10 = 11
OK, the Sorcerer becomes 15 at 6th level then. (Since you added an ASI at 4th level for the Fighter, I get to do the same for the Sorcerer.)

So ... 21 or 22 vs. 15? Still too close.
 
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