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-   -   Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments (http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread.php?t=167541)

tomc 02-19-2020 08:45 PM

Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Is there a consensus on using missile weapon range adjustments for thrown spells? It would make lower IQ spells like Trip and Drop Weapon dangerous...

hcobb 02-19-2020 09:45 PM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
The real problem with thrown spells is doing them over and over again all day long from miles and miles away.

My DX 9 witch lying on the surface casts Knock at various depth settings and listens to the ground for the explosions of traps going off dozens of yards below her. ("One ping only!")

Skarg 02-20-2020 12:05 AM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Hopefully there's a strong consensus to NOT use missile weapon ranged adjustments for thrown spells, unless you want thrown spells to be massively more effective than they already are, and for everyone to be at their mercy even at a distance.

The range penalty is almost the only thing limiting the effectiveness of Thrown spells, and there are several of them that are extremely powerful when they succeed. As is, you can mitigate that danger by not getting too close to a capable wizard. Take that away, and it'll be a Thrown spell field day.

They'd be even more effective than missile spells can be in ending a wizard duel in favor of the fastest wizard. After all, you can't dodge them or avoid them by standing behind allies.

Trip and Drop Weapon are low-IQ spells but can be quite effective if/when use well. Many of the others would be very discouraging if they were easy to get hit with even several megahexes away.

Of course, it would open up various new long-range tactics and exploits, which might be entertaining for them (and very challenging for others to cope with).

Shostak 02-20-2020 05:37 AM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Thrown spells using missile range penalties? Don't do it.

Instead, I like the house-rule talent similar to Missile Weapons talent that allows a wizard to use a particular thrown spell at +1 to +3 (depending on the level of the talent) with the adjustment to DX only being able to offset the range penalty, never to give an actual bonus. It winds up costing the wizard a lot, but that seems fair given how powerful many thrown spells are. Having this talent in the game adds a lot of uncertainty about sorcerous adversaries, which I enjoy.

David Bofinger 02-20-2020 08:11 AM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Wizards were plenty good enough in Classic and have got a lot of help in Legacy through the staff changes. A major change that makes them even more effective seems unwise. I'd be more interested in something that gave heroes more of a chance against wizards.

larsdangly 02-20-2020 08:19 AM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
The central design concept of the game is diversity with parity. Break the parity and there is no diversity. A wizard who can use all thrown spells outside of the range of a charge with little or no DX penalty will wipe out any non-wizard in pretty much any conflict. I would only consider doing this if there were some understanding about the campaign that made it acceptable for wizards to be the only competitive character type (i.e., in combat).

tomc 02-20-2020 11:41 AM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by David Bofinger (Post 2310462)
Wizards were plenty good enough in Classic and have got a lot of help in Legacy through the staff changes. A major change that makes them even more effective seems unwise. I'd be more interested in something that gave heroes more of a chance against wizards.

In a one-on-one cage match, wizards have a big edge. That doesn't bother me. I like my magic rare, scary, and a bit mysterious. But in a longer dungeon setting, the wizard usually sits out most fights, so they won't be used up if something big comes along.

As I recall, the staff changes (and 3 ST limit on missile spells) were made to give the wizard a chance to contribute more often in a standard dungeon crawl, rather than saving him/her self until a "big gun" was needed. I was thinking that increasing the range of thrown spells would lead to them being used more often, adding some diversity and creativity to combats.

It could also make an IQ 9 or 10 wizard actually dangerous. Thrown spells like trip or drop weapon don't do damage on their own, but can be lethal if thrown on a foe already engaged in combat.

To me it seems kind of goofy that a wizard has to run up and get close before they can use certain kinds of magic on you, while others spells work from much farther away.

tomc 02-20-2020 11:52 AM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Shostak (Post 2310447)
...I like the house-rule talent similar to Missile Weapons talent that allows a wizard to use a particular thrown spell at +1 to +3 (depending on the level of the talent) with the adjustment to DX only being able to offset the range penalty, never to give an actual bonus. It winds up costing the wizard a lot, but that seems fair given how powerful many thrown spells are. Having this talent in the game adds a lot of uncertainty about sorcerous adversaries, which I enjoy.

A thrown spell talent is a neat idea, and the cost offsets some of the benefit. I might go for something more drastic, like reducing the DX penalty to half, but it's worth trying out both ways.

hcobb 02-20-2020 12:05 PM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Spell Expertise: Costs two memory points for hero and wizard. Specify the thrown spell when buying this talent and the range adjustment for that spell is reduced to minus one DX per megahex of range rather than per hex.

Skarg 02-20-2020 12:13 PM

Re: Thrown spells using missile weapon drange adjustments
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by tomc (Post 2310495)
... I was thinking that increasing the range of thrown spells would lead to them being used more often, adding some diversity and creativity to combats.

It could also make an IQ 9 or 10 wizard actually dangerous. Thrown spells like trip or drop weapon don't do damage on their own, but can be lethal if thrown on a foe already engaged in combat.

To me it seems kind of goofy that a wizard has to run up and get close before they can use certain kinds of magic on you, while others spells work from much farther away.

It seems to me that there are many possibilities you are not considering, which would make wizards very dominant, especially at long range, but also in many circumstances where now they are more balanced.

I can think of many ways IQ 9 or 10 wizards can be very effective. And many ways they would be extremely powerful with the super-long-range thrown spells you suggested. They would be a nightmare for their opponents, and for GM's of clever players, and for players whose GMs were using such powers against them intelligently.

This may come across as even more patronizing than I probably already often come across as, so apologies for that, but I think you need to playtest wizards more to appreciate how effective they can be when played well.

It is true that it's quite possible to face hard problems as a wizard, or to not see an easy/effective/obvious thing to do that isn't dangerous or that doesn't use up your ST, and get frustrated. But it's also very possible in many situations for a wizard used well to tip the scales of a group fight, and/or dominate a fighter of equal or more attributes than they have.

The proposed change would make it easier for a wizard to be effective without having to be clever or to take risks or to use a lot of energy or to have more powerful spells. But that also means that clever wizards and wizards who are more powerful etc would be even more capable than they already are.

It'd be great for limiting magic item proliferation, though, and for brigandry and pacifism. Just use Break Weapon to break people's weapons from long range and run away, rest and come back till they're all out of weapons. Often wizards will be able to cast spells on people from so far away they may not even be seen, let alone identified.

Or hide in the bushes out of sight and cast Control Person and have the party attack itself, without them even knowing which way to try to run to find or avoid whoever was doing that to them.

Or Curse your foes from range.

Not to mention more powerful spells. "You're walking down the road when... someone at a distance cast Megahex Sleep on your whole party. Anyone have ST 20? No?"


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