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Old 06-23-2019, 08:39 AM   #11
amenditman
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Florida Peninsula, Earth, Sol Sytem
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

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Originally Posted by Chris Rice View Post
DAZZLE. A low level Wizard's mass attack spell. The scout reports a chamber ahead full of orcs, too many for the party to take on in a straight fight. The Wizard declares, "stand well back lads, I got this." He approaches the door, throws it open, casting Dazzle as he does so. The party then change in and clean up. The only thing that stops it being absolute kryptonite is the short duration of 3 turns so the players may only get a couple of turns of advantage. My favourite combo was Dazzle Wizard and Blind Warrior.
My biggest problem with Dazzle is the 3 turn duration. It will take your friends most or all of that to arrive from their safe distance. Otherwise, a great use of this spell.
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Old 06-23-2019, 10:30 AM   #12
Chris Rice
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: London Uk, but originally from Scotland
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

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Originally Posted by amenditman View Post
My biggest problem with Dazzle is the 3 turn duration. It will take your friends most or all of that to arrive from their safe distance. Otherwise, a great use of this spell.
Yes, the 3 turn duration is a limitation. I was perhaps a little generous in my interpretation of the spell, in that I'd allow the Wizard's companions to cover their eyes and avoid the effects of the spell, even though the spell description says a "blinding psychic flash."

I also allowed it to stun or temporarily blind an opponent to allow the Wizard to slip past or get away, so it was useful for more than just combat.
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Old 06-23-2019, 10:37 AM   #13
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

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Originally Posted by Chris Rice View Post
I've always considered Wizards to be a fair bit rarer than the proportions mentioned in the rules. But even if they are as common as that, why would a Wizard lend you their apprentices to help you farm wishes? Surely they be doing it themselves. So what you say doesn't make sense.
That's something the Wizards' Guild (if it exists as described in your campaign) specifically offers as a service - hiring apprentices for their time and fatigue for a reasonable cost.

Of course, if the GM has realized how easy the new RAW makes wish farming, he may have adjusted it to be more dangerous, in which case the guild might not permit hiring apprentices for that, or at least not without paying the super-dangerous-service rate.


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Plus I think it may have been a mistake to reduce the IQ of Demons in the new edition, though I understand why it was done.
Yeah it's intended to make it possible, but the other changes make it possible to make wish farming rather safe & easy. i.e. In the original rules, it wasn't just an "attack" by a demon who the rules now don't make clear can't be kept away from the wizard asking for a wish by a pentagram. It was a battle of wills (3 dice vs IQ -20) where failure meant death (5 attributes lost even if you get Revived) or complete annihilation (no Revive) on a critical failure, with no pentagram protection allowed. (And yet still people talked about how to abuse it - but at least it required an extremely-high-IQ wizard and a Charm item.)
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Old 06-23-2019, 10:53 AM   #14
Chris Rice
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: London Uk, but originally from Scotland
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

The problem of moulding your world too much around any set of rules is that you can end up with a world which is nothing like anything in your favourite fiction and may not actually be that much fun to play in.

If you design a world strictly around the rules of TFT, then for a start, all major travel will be by gate, there will be Wizards round every corner, everyone will be wish farming like crazy, etc. I don't want a world like that.

To me, the purpose of a set of rules shouldn't be to restrict the GM or players in creating their own world, but just to give a basic mechanical structure to certain aspects of play.
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Old 06-23-2019, 10:56 AM   #15
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

Magic Fist can be absolutely brilliant if used cleverly. Can be used to knock people into pits, but mainly it's the missile-ranged ability to touch (or hit) things at a distance.

Avert is also great for evasion, if you've only got one person to get away from - Avert them and then run away. Various battlefield position can also offer amazing opportunities. Or other situations - just ask the guy who got Averted into the path of a speeding wagon...

Dazzle can also be amazing in the right circumstances, especially because of how many people it affects. And because of the way the 3-die bell curve works, if your fighters have somewhat higher DX than your opponents, a Dazzle on everyone may likely mean your fighters can still possibly hit things, while theirs are now very unlikely to do so. Blanket DX penalties tend to favor the higher-DX side (or the side which has a reason to take actions that don't require DX rolls, and want to be able to survive attacks while they do that - e.g. the side that wants to run, close distance past missile fire, ready weapons, untie people, get a door open, climb, swim, mount horses, explain that the fight is all a mistake, gain time for reinforcements or the city guard to arrive, etc).

When people think a spell is bad, often they're only thinking of one or two ways it could be used, and not thinking about details of situations. When someone finds other ways and situations where such spells shine, it can catch people by surprise and be very fun and interesting.

Last edited by Skarg; 06-23-2019 at 10:59 AM.
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Old 06-23-2019, 11:19 AM   #16
Axly Suregrip
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

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Originally Posted by Chris Rice View Post
AVERT. Simply brilliant. The target gets no saving throw and it can affect anything, no matter how big or powerful it might be. Giants? Bah, go away you big lunk. 14 hex-Dragons.? Begone you overgrown snake! A summoned wolf wouldn't help you much there, would it. It's only weakness is against attacks from a distance, but you have reverse missiles for that.
On page 140 of ITL in the Continuing Spells section it says spell cost and continuation cost is multiplied by the number of hexes of the target. So, in your example the Avert spell on a 14 hex dragon would cost 28 initially and then cost 14 more per turn. That means you would spend 42 ST just to affect one movement phase and then 14 ST per turn thereafter. Seems too expensive for what you get.

Even against a 3 hex giant it seems to much to pay (6 initially, 3 per turn, thus 9 ST cost to get 2 hexes more distant for the first movement). Assuming you can spare the 9 ST, how long can you maintain this?

Maybe against a high ST single hex sized foe this is a good spell. (Bear, Troll, etc). Lower ST foes are better dealt with Sleep, Freeze, Rope or even Trip. Trip for that matter can handle the high ST foes and has an immediate useful affect.
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Old 06-23-2019, 11:30 AM   #17
Chris Rice
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: London Uk, but originally from Scotland
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

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Originally Posted by Axly Suregrip View Post
On page 140 of ITL in the Continuing Spells section it says spell cost and continuation cost is multiplied by the number of hexes of the target. So, in your example the Avert spell on a 14 hex dragon would cost 28 initially and then cost 14 more per turn. That means you would spend 42 ST just to affect one movement phase and then 14 ST per turn thereafter. Seems too expensive for what you get.

Even against a 3 hex giant it seems to much to pay (6 initially, 3 per turn, thus 9 ST cost to get 2 hexes more distant for the first movement). Assuming you can spare the 9 ST, how long can you maintain this?

Maybe against a high ST single hex sized foe this is a good spell. (Bear, Troll, etc). Lower ST foes are better dealt with Sleep, Freeze, Rope or even Trip. Trip for that matter can handle the high ST foes and has an immediate useful affect.
I don't see any such restriction in the Wizard rules. This is why I'm more interested in using the rules from Melee and Wizard and then judiciously adding rules from ITL, rather than using everything from ITL. I'm not interested in that added complexity.
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Old 06-23-2019, 12:04 PM   #18
Axly Suregrip
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

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Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
Dazzle can also be amazing in the right circumstances, especially because of how many people it affects. And because of the way the 3-die bell curve works, if your fighters have somewhat higher DX than your opponents, a Dazzle on everyone may likely mean your fighters can still possibly hit things, while theirs are now very unlikely to do so. Blanket DX penalties tend to favor the higher-DX side (or the side which has a reason to take actions that don't require DX rolls, and want to be able to survive attacks while they do that - e.g. the side that wants to run, close distance past missile fire, ready weapons, untie people, get a door open, climb, swim, mount horses, explain that the fight is all a mistake, gain time for reinforcements or the city guard to arrive, etc).
Brilliant answer. Thank you.
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Old 06-23-2019, 12:17 PM   #19
MikMod
 
Join Date: May 2019
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

Anyone else think Staff to Snake is rubbish?

It seems to me so specific as to be pretty limited in application, not to mention you lose your staff, which may have things like powerstones embedded in it, and now you cannot even defend! And when its all over you have to spend a turn picking the thing up...

Last edited by MikMod; 06-23-2019 at 12:33 PM. Reason: added bold so Axly can see it! ;)
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Old 06-23-2019, 12:22 PM   #20
Axly Suregrip
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Default Re: Least Useful Spells

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Originally Posted by Chris Rice View Post
I don't see any such restriction in the Wizard rules. This is why I'm more interested in using the rules from Melee and Wizard and then judiciously adding rules from ITL, rather than using everything from ITL. I'm not interested in that added complexity.
:-)
I too prefer Melee & Wizard over ITL. Depending on your friends sometimes you have to play ITL.

As a side topic: do you run Mage Sight at a continuation cost of 1ST/turn (Wizard) or 1ST/minute (ITL)?



Does any one else have spells they find lacking?
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