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Old 06-07-2020, 06:59 AM   #21
hcobb
 
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Default Re: Spell Books

Why not start wizards with chests (for free, or at a big discount, replacement is at full cost but there's no big market for used as every part will need to be retuned), and whatever spellbooks they can afford. Your wizards are questing for books all the time that they can't use in combat.

So any Wizard Academy graduate with Literacy can start with a chest for $500 down and geused to pay half their net income to the WG until the loan is paid off.
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Last edited by hcobb; 06-07-2020 at 07:07 AM.
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Old 06-07-2020, 09:43 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Steve Plambeck View Post

In the magic system I've worked out, wizard builds of identical numerical attributes can turn out extremely different from each other, which seems to be one of our common goals.
I found the thread where you posted your original Wizardry Talent. Yes, it looks like we do share similar goals and approaches. If that 2nd edition had ever actually been published, there's a decent chance I'd have grown up using your rule, and never felt the need to come up with my own!

Off topic, but today I also ran across this post of hcobb's, and I absolutely love it. I tried to keep my rules balanced so that the new builds could coexist with vanilla wizards, and now I'm really glad I did.

One puzzle I haven't quite been able to solve yet is what to do with Sorceror's Tongue. The description under Word of Command implies one could use it to communicate with any sentient being. I'm also thinking it's the language of magical lore, full of technical terms for incredibly abstract concepts which natural languages can't describe, and therefore necessary in order to learn high-IQ spells from books. (Aaaand we're back on topic again!)
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Old 06-08-2020, 02:00 AM   #23
Steve Plambeck
 
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One puzzle I haven't quite been able to solve yet is what to do with Sorceror's Tongue. The description under Word of Command implies one could use it to communicate with any sentient being. I'm also thinking it's the language of magical lore, full of technical terms for incredibly abstract concepts which natural languages can't describe, and therefore necessary in order to learn high-IQ spells from books. (Aaaand we're back on topic again!)
That's right, we can't talk about books without talking about language! We had been starting to drift there :)

I can't comment much on the Sorcerer's Tongue rules in relation to books or scrolls though, because my group never used it. Like many differences between how my group played TFT and the official RAW, that came about because we started our campaign world in early 1978, with only Melee and Wizard to work from. We'd been developing our own rules (for jumping, climbing, swimming, fencing, riding, skills and languages) to fill in the blanks years before ITL and the Advanced rules were published. And where those books disagreed with what we were doing, we stubbornly stuck to how we'd done things before.

In our cosmology we had a language we called Runish. It was more than just a magical language, it was the language of Creation. The commands the gods issued to create the World were spoken in Runish. All the first races, the intelligent ones, Elves and Dragons and all magical creatures, spoke Runish as their native tongue from the moment they were created, long before Humans evolved to appear on the scene.

It was the Elves that developed a written form for that language (written in runes of course) and all spell books had to be written in Runish, and all spells learned in Runish in order to work. You couldn't cast a spell without speaking it (or thinking it) in Runish. So Humans and other races had to learn Runish in addition to their native tongues in order to become wizards. But Elves had a slight advantage, because Runish was their native tongue; so for them it was a "free" language. (There was no separate Elvish language in our world; Runish was also called Elvish though by many of the younger races, but they were in fact the same language.)

Runish was tricky. You couldn't tell a lie in Runish. If an Elf or Dragon or wizard wanted to lie, they'd have to speak it in another tongue. Not a problem for Dragons as they all seemed to know every language in the world, and besides, Dragons tend to get their way without having to lie. So do Demons, although they rather enjoy lying; even they can't do it though unless using a language other than Runish.

There were, or tended to be, consequences to issuing any statement in Runish, because it was the language of Creation. If I were to say, "Look, there's a bear" in English, or Common, or Goblin, the universe would ignore me and there'd be no bear. But if I were to say "Look, there's a bear" in Runish, and pronounce and say it correctly (which wasn't easy), then as far as the universe was concerned there had to be a bear there, so it would summon or create one.

This then would have been a rather chaotic world, except for one handy thing: The Law of Conservation of Mana. Things couldn't just happen or appear even when commanded in perfect Runish if the energy cost couldn't be paid to rearrange the matter and energy as needed. And that required the mind to be properly trained to focus Mana, a mental feat that could be extremely exhausting for anyone not a god themselves.

The few mortals who learned how to access and use this energy, how to read and speak Runish, and how to inflect the exact words exactly right, they got to be called Wizards.
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Old 06-08-2020, 12:12 PM   #24
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This is EXACTLY the magic system from Christopher Paolini's Inheritance Cycle, right down to Elves speaking the magic language natively. Sounds like you beat him to it by a couple decades though...
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Old 06-08-2020, 11:43 PM   #25
Steve Plambeck
 
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This is EXACTLY the magic system from Christopher Paolini's Inheritance Cycle, right down to Elves speaking the magic language natively. Sounds like you beat him to it by a couple decades though...
Huh, never heard of him, guess I should look into that. Thanks! [edit: I have seen those in bookstores -- the covers are rather distinct.]
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Old 06-09-2020, 01:01 AM   #26
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Fair warning: Paolini was about 17 when the first book ("Eragon", I kinda wonder if the name began as a fortuitous typo) was published and it... shows. The plot is ripped off, almost scene-by-scene, from a certain very well-known movie. Probably unintentional on the author's part, but whoever was responsible for editing the thing was either asleep at the wheel or impressively ignorant of pop culture.

It's not all bad, there are definitely some cool moments... but if you're short on reading time, maybe don't spend it on Eragon when there are so many better fantasy novels out there.
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Old 06-17-2020, 07:32 AM   #27
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Why not start wizards with chests
A beginning Wizard can spend a year or so working and have enough silver to buy a Wizard's Chest and a book with handy adventuring spells.

For example:
Assuming starting with $1000 and starting with silver dagger, club (for staff) and leather armor that will cost -$210 (a potential starting kit). And let's a say he wants a book of 9 spells (see below) with water proof binding (hmm, no cost listed for bindings), and a backpack to carry the chest and book.

Book: $1800 (8 lbs)
Backpack: $40 (4 lbs)
Wiz Chest:$2500 (10 lbs)
TOTAL of these three: $4340

TOTAL with weapons,etc minus starting cash: $3,550

At a starting salary of anywhere from $25 to $125 (only looking at jobs with at least equal chance of bonus vs risk) it would take 142 to 29 weeks. But really more likely 71 to 29 weeks since who would take the poorest paying jobs.

So, have your wizard work for a year or two before adventuring and he will have all shiny new chest and handy book of adventuring spells.

Here is the book for adventuring for IQ 12 Wizards. All spells that would be useful when taking a while to cast and/or gives lasting effects so the prep can be done well in advance:

Detect Magic
Light (24 hours)
Dark Vision (1 hour)
Lock/Knock
Meal
Stalwart (24 hours)
Reveal/Conceal
Analyze Magic
Pathfinder

There are other useful spells and you could if you have IQ 14, adding Scrying, Glamor and Remove Thrown Spell would be a must. The above is an example of a starter adventurer's book.

Other spells you may want to have in a book: Fire (I assume every combat wizard knows this already), Far Vision, Ward, Scour, Mage Sight, Magic Rainstorm, Repair, Fireproof, Flight, Open Tunnel and Telepathy. These can be in volume 2. Or mix it up to fit your need. These have more limited uses.
Maybe Fire and Repair should be in the first volume.

So really, any starting Wizard should be able to start the game with a chest and book of spells.
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Old 06-17-2020, 09:47 AM   #28
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Default Re: Spell Books

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So really, any starting Wizard should be able to start the game with a chest and book of spells.
This is cool. I like the idea of a wizard having a plan for their education and advancement, and the one you lay out above is excellent for an organized, disciplined mind. Which one expects most wizards to have.

The other side of the coin is that a brash and impatient youth may not want to spend a year or so working, when they can start their adventuring career now, and have the money (and a good backstory) in a few weeks. Or not, in which case they'll be dead and beyond worrying about it. The impulsiveness of youth, and all that.
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Old 06-17-2020, 09:53 AM   #29
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Default Re: Spell Books

Detect / Analyze Magic might not be the best choices for a reduced DX casting.

The nice thing about Spellsniffer (which can't be cast from a book) is that your party goblin can roll against DX 9 over and over to activate it and then work from IQ 17 for the chance to be lied to. This means that only a sixth of her item descriptions are lies. (Best to have two goblins in the party.)
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Old 06-17-2020, 01:34 PM   #30
Axly Suregrip
 
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Detect / Analyze Magic might not be the best choices for a reduced DX casting.
With regards to starting wizards, maybe not everyone wants that same goblin wizard with maxed out IQ. So, a beginning human wizard for example cannot have spellsniffer.

A book with Detect Magic & Analyze Magic is better than nothing. And since we are saying the wizard is casting this at his leisure, he can cast as many Detect Magic spells as needed to feel comfortable with the results (once per day on same item, see pg 156). Note ideal, but still useful.

Or you don't get Analyze Magic in your book and learn that one instead. Get which spells you want in the book and you get a starting Wizard that is helpful at home and in combat.
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