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Old 10-02-2018, 12:25 PM   #1
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Pentagram strength?

So when something tries to break through a pentagram for the first time, a 3-die roll is called for to see if the pentagram holds, against the drawer's IQ.

For an enchanted Permanent Pentagram, the 3 dice vs. IQ of the enchanter is used.

Cool, right? It matters who drew it, so you want Fantasmo the best pentagram drawer...

But, er, Pentagram is an IQ 15 spell, and a 16+ is an automatic failure on 3 dice. (So effectively, it's always a 3 dice vs 15 roll for any pentagram, no?)

So if we like the idea of different-strength pentagrams, how can this best be salvaged?
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Old 10-02-2018, 12:49 PM   #2
Chris Goodwin
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
Default Re: Pentagram strength?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
So when something tries to break through a pentagram for the first time, a 3-die roll is called for to see if the pentagram holds, against the drawer's IQ.

For an enchanted Permanent Pentagram, the 3 dice vs. IQ of the enchanter is used.

Cool, right? It matters who drew it, so you want Fantasmo the best pentagram drawer...

But, er, Pentagram is an IQ 15 spell, and a 16+ is an automatic failure on 3 dice. (So effectively, it's always a 3 dice vs 15 roll for any pentagram, no?)

So if we like the idea of different-strength pentagrams, how can this best be salvaged?
When it's time to make the IQ roll, the enchanter has a Lesser Wish banked up. And they get their IQ Aided to ridiculous levels. Then they burn their Lesser Wish to roll a 3 on that IQ roll.
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Old 10-02-2018, 01:02 PM   #3
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: Pentagram strength?

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Originally Posted by Chris Goodwin View Post
When it's time to make the IQ roll, the enchanter has a Lesser Wish banked up.
If/when they do and want to use it on that, ok.

But it doesn't seem to me to have anything to do with my question, which is about it not mattering what IQ the caster is since they need IQ 15+ to learn the spell, and a roll of 16+ is an auto-failure, and what can best be done to preserve the interesting intent that pentagrams are stronger when cast by higher-IQ wizards?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Goodwin View Post
And they get their IQ Aided to ridiculous levels.
Assuming Aid counts for that and it doesn't need to be your actual IQ:

GM: Ok, you cast +10 IQ in Aid spells to raise your IQ from 18 to 28.
(later)
GM: Something tries to break your pentagram - roll 3 versus your aided IQ of 28.
Player: I rolled a 16.
GM: Hmm, automatic failure ...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Goodwin View Post
Then they burn their Lesser Wish to roll a 3 on that IQ roll.
That would only help if there were a contest involved, but there isn't. Perhaps somehow if a Contest could be worked into the Pentagram rules, that would help.
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Old 10-02-2018, 01:08 PM   #4
Chris Goodwin
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
Default Re: Pentagram strength?

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Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
That would only help if there were a contest involved, but there isn't. Perhaps somehow if a Contest could be worked into the Pentagram rules, that would help.
When casting Permanent Pentagram, the wizard rolls their IQ and notes how much they made it by (new ITL pp. 158-159), and all subsequent safety checks are made against that value. No contest required. The Lesser Wish can be used before a die roll is made, in order to set the roll at the desired result. 3 shall be the number of the desired result, and the number of the desired result shall be 3. 5 is right out...

So, if the wizard's IQ is Aided to, say, 40 when the Permanent Pentagram IQ roll is made, and they use Lesser Wish to set that roll to 3, they've got a permanent 37 points of margin.

Edit: Never mind, I misread that. Still, that's how I'd do it. Anyway, you record the wizard's IQ at the time the Permanent Pentagram is enchanted (in this example, 40). You're right in that 16+ auto-fails and 18 crit-fails are still possible.

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Last edited by Chris Goodwin; 10-02-2018 at 01:14 PM.
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Old 10-02-2018, 01:42 PM   #5
Shadekeep
 
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Default Re: Pentagram strength?

I personally think the auto-success/fail rolls cover a bit too much of the curve. I prefer to just make 3 a critical success with bonus results, and 18 a critical failure with terrible results. But within the standard rules I'm not sure how you step up the power of pentagrams, unless you allow higher levels to be multi-layered and require a succession of rolls to break through.
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Old 10-02-2018, 02:07 PM   #6
Skarg
 
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Default Re: Pentagram strength?

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Originally Posted by Shadekeep View Post
I personally think the auto-success/fail rolls cover a bit too much of the curve. I prefer to just make 3 a critical success with bonus results, and 18 a critical failure with terrible results. But within the standard rules I'm not sure how you step up the power of pentagrams, unless you allow higher levels to be multi-layered and require a succession of rolls to break through.
Yeah, you could do a second roll to "confirm the auto-failure" if the target number was 16 or higher, at -10.

i.e. If something with a stat of 16+ rolls a 16-18, roll again against stat -10 to see if the auto-fail result actually applies or not. A success on the -10 roll could either be a success in all cases, or lower the auto-fail result as if the original roll were one lower.
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Old 10-02-2018, 02:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: Pentagram strength?

Right, that's a pretty good solution that keeps higher stats from being irrelevant in such cases.
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Old 10-02-2018, 04:35 PM   #8
tomc
 
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Default Re: Pentagram strength?

Make Pentagram an IQ 8 spell. Anyone can do it, but few can do it well. At least, few can do it well enough to risk it often.
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Old 10-02-2018, 05:03 PM   #9
Venomous Filigree
 
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Default Re: Pentagram strength?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
So when something tries to break through a pentagram for the first time, a 3-die roll is called for to see if the pentagram holds, against the drawer's IQ.

For an enchanted Permanent Pentagram, the 3 dice vs. IQ of the enchanter is used.

Cool, right? It matters who drew it, so you want Fantasmo the best pentagram drawer...

But, er, Pentagram is an IQ 15 spell, and a 16+ is an automatic failure on 3 dice. (So effectively, it's always a 3 dice vs 15 roll for any pentagram, no?)

So if we like the idea of different-strength pentagrams, how can this best be salvaged?
If a scroll is involved I don't think it's always against IQ 15?
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Old 11-08-2018, 04:11 PM   #10
hcobb
 
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Default Re: Pentagram strength?

Make wishes interesting. Make it a 4/IQ roll for major demons.
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