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Old 03-08-2016, 07:36 PM   #41
dataweaver
 
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Default Re: Revising GURPS Magic

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
Ick! This severely penalizes flexible mages and benefits no one significantly except the Johnny One-Spell. Not at all what I'd want to do.

At best you are reducing a mages number of spells by a factor of 4. What you should do after that is totally revise the spell list to make the average utility of spells 4x greater.
Hopefully, that should put the final nail in the coffin of the argument that I'm being too generous. :)

Yes, this approach makes mages with a lot of spells more expensive. But then, I've seen plenty of arguments that Magic is underpriced compared to Powers — largely due to this very reason: mages get a huge price break due to gaining much effectiveness from contributing only a single point to each spell. So from that perspective, the higher expense of being a mage under this tweak is a feature.
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Old 03-08-2016, 08:48 PM   #42
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Hopefully, that should put the final nail in the coffin of the argument that I'm being too generous. :)
Nah. Part of the problem is that powers are in general overpriced, and thus anything that balances magic compared to powers will also be overpriced, but the 1p/spell mages were always grotesquely underpriced for their flexibility.
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Old 03-08-2016, 09:46 PM   #43
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Default Re: Revising GURPS Magic

Learning Magic
Unchanged.

Finding a Teacher
Not so much a change as a clarification: this section boios down to “use Improvement Through Study”. Granted, there are more options under Improvement Through Study than are listed in this section; but all are applicable.

Prerequisites
Unchanged.
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Old 03-08-2016, 10:54 PM   #44
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The things I'm doing:

Magery never gives a skill bonus. Instead there are Magic Talents for separate colleges. These have different costs due to college size - a bit more generous than regular talents, though. Magic Talents can stand in for Magery, i.e. you need either Magery 1 or Talent: Fire Magic 1 to learn Fireball.

Magery and Magic Talent never add their levels when it comes to overcome limits of a spell. Each campaign has a point limit for the combined cost of Magery and all Magic Talents. Magery 0 is 10 points too. So it's much more efficient to max out talents in two colleges and maybe get Magery 0 to pull off impressive things, but you won't be much of a generalist.

There is no cost reduction for high skill alone. Casting cost is reduced by a certain margin of success, but for maintenance costs you need to take a penalty on your roll (which also reduces MoS for casting cost reduction). There are various ways to increase your skill somewhat, but you won't pull off zero maintenance for anything but 1 energy spells without some serious effort.

There are various benefits tied to relative skill level, e.g. the MoS needed for casting cost reduction and the needed ritual. Talent can substitute for points invested in a skill here, but a mage with Fireball at attribute +2 will look very different from one with the spell at attribute -3.

For those interested in the whole system, I put it on my blog:

https://blindmapmaker.wordpress.com/2015/09/06/164/
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Old 03-09-2016, 12:08 AM   #45
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Default Re: Revising GURPS Magic

Personally I think the skill bonus from Magery should stay and it absolutely should apply to relative skill level thresholds if we change casting cost to be related to them.

If other talents are weaker per point than Magery then it's the other talents that need a price drop or to step up their game LOL

Also I see absolutely zero problem with putting a spell or several in a Talent that already has other skills.
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Old 03-09-2016, 02:25 PM   #46
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Personally I think the skill bonus from Magery should stay and it absolutely should apply to relative skill level thresholds if we change casting cost to be related to them.

If other talents are weaker per point than Magery then it's the other talents that need a price drop or to step up their game LOL

Also I see absolutely zero problem with putting a spell or several in a Talent that already has other skills.
It's a problem of scope. If you can get a bonus of +1 to every one of 300+ spells for 10 points than every mage built will take the maximum of Magery that's allowed. The exception is the one-trick pony and even he might take one-spell Magery. You could drop the single college talents down to 5 points per level (1 point more than raising a hard skill above attribute level) and they still wouldn't make the cut.

Having Magery boost every spell in the book serves no purpose beside saving you the trouble to buy full-price IQ. As it is Magery contains absolutely no element of characterisation except for "Generalists for the Win!"
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Old 03-09-2016, 02:34 PM   #47
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Yes, this approach makes mages with a lot of spells more expensive. But then, I've seen plenty of arguments that Magic is underpriced compared to Powers — ].
As Anthony says, Powers are generally overpriced.

They are also irregularly and sometimes just oddly priced. See the huge divide between offense and defense (Innate attack v. Damage Resistance) as just one example.

The one thing I know about Magic in its' default form is that in my pretty extensive experience it is actually balanced in play in low tech fantasy games. Nobody who has objections to it ever seems to want to preserve that balance.
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Old 03-09-2016, 02:49 PM   #48
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Default Re: Revising GURPS Magic

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They are also irregularly and sometimes just oddly priced. See the huge divide between offense and defense (Innate attack v. Damage Resistance) as just one example.
That is a way to make the battles going, just like active defenses are generally lower then attack rolls.
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Old 03-09-2016, 03:05 PM   #49
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Default Re: Revising GURPS Magic

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The one thing I know about Magic in its' default form is that in my pretty extensive experience it is actually balanced in play in low tech fantasy games. Nobody who has objections to it ever seems to want to preserve that balance.
It's balanced to somewhat underpowered in combat. It becomes overpowered fairly quickly in situations where you are under less time pressure, and often hilariously broken in situations that are of very little interest to most players, such as industry. My preference would be to make it better in combat and worse in other uses, and one of the easiest ways of doing that is to design it to encourage a small number of powerful spells rather than a large number of modest spells.
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Old 03-09-2016, 03:42 PM   #50
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It's balanced to somewhat underpowered in combat. It becomes overpowered fairly quickly in situations where you are under less time pressure, and often hilariously broken in situations that are of very little interest to most players, such as industry. My preference would be to make it better in combat and worse in other uses, and one of the easiest ways of doing that is to design it to encourage a small number of powerful spells rather than a large number of modest spells.
Fine. Create an entire new spell list to implement your changes. That would make far more sense than just nerfing Magery and/or mages and leaving the spell list alone.
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