From Rewriting spell-book alternative:
Fabio Milito Pagliara: Hello to all, my name is Fabio Milito Pagliara and I am a D&D old player
to the topic
the idea the a wizard has to “re-write” the spell in his spell book is one that will find great opposition (as happened in D&D 4th edition) so I suggest to reformulate it without modifying the game balance or the system
the system presented in ACK can be seen as one in which the wizard construct in his mind “schemata” (or “sigil” or whatever) for each of the “ready” spell (table + Int bonus), how long it will take to construct this “schemata” (1 hour, 1 day, 1 week)/level and the cost (10 gp, 100 gp, 1000 gp)/level is matter of game balance and I suggest to leave it as for the time of spellbook rewriting
in the book there should be more spell than the wizard can “ready”, I would go with the old spell maximum of AD&D or something similar
an easy one: the maximum number of spell a wizard can “understand” (and thus write in his spellbook for each spell level is “Intelligence-Spell Level” spells
Sean Wills: I see what you’re aiming for but I think this makes wizards into stamp collectors and arcane knowledge less elusive. Magic has it’s own rules, counter-intuitive or not.
Fabio Milito Pagliara: isn’t the greatest asset of a wizard it’s spell collection?
there are other means to elude the stamp-collector feel
- don’t present too many spell
- put a maximum to the number of spell a wizard can understand and write in his/her spellbook
but to rewrite the spell sounds just “bad” not “magical” at all
Sean Wills: I like the rewriting idea because of the way individual wizards may evolve over time, at different stages of their ‘career’ specialising in different spells. High level mages would be drawing on different spells rather than having the same bulging spellbook. Having a narrow selection to draw from helps to balance spellcasters with non casters by limiting the ‘one-man army who can solve all adventures by being able to do anything’ that exists in D&D - invisible teleporting polymorphous deathbringer Gandalf.
Veketshian: I agree with Mr. Wills about how to treat the mage in the game. What became rather troublesome in 3.5 is that the wizard could, in theory, eventually have every spell and craft a bunch of wands and staves so that the right spell could be pulled out at the right time. The versatility of the wizard seemed to overshadow the one-trick ponies of the martial-based classes, at least to popular forum belief.
From a flavor perspective, the wizard just felt watered down because it had access to so many spells from eight different fields. The most powerful option for the wizard was to stay a universalist, and it’s hard to argue for being more flavorful by focusing on a subschool when that flavor required a loss of power.
I think it’s best that the mage stay with a limited spell list, but possess on-the-fly casting.
Fabio Milito Pagliara: while I understand the doubt I don’t see (mechanically) the difference between having the need of rewriting one own spell-book at 1 week/level and 1000gp/level to rewrite the spell and the need to recreate the spell pattern at 1 week/level and 1000gp/levelin the wizard mind?
the big difference is flavor
From Magic and spell question or Cleric vs wizard:
Fabio Milito Pagliara: 1) cleric vs wizard
I see a problem, as I read the rules both kind of spellcaster chose the spell to cast at the moment of casting BUT the cleric can chose between 10 spell vs the 1-4 spell at first level to the 4-7 spell at 14th level of a wizard it seems a little “wrong” for at least 2 reason
a) the cleric seems too much advantaged
b) more importantly in this way the cleric is more flexible in his choice of spells and it should be the other way around
and we go back to the question of the limits to the number of spell in the spellbook
I come from AD&D 1st edition, the limit of spell in the book are linked to intelligence as all of you know (and at 19 you get unlimited number of spell), to have such a small number of spell in the book means to take away a reason of being of the wizard (to have the biggest collection of spell in his library)
this was one of the reason for asking again to rethink of the way the book works in ACKS
Alex: Fabio - thanks for your comments. Before printing these rules, we had a 101 session long campaign that took the players from level 1 to level 14. We had both mages and clerics in the campaign. We did not feel, overall, that the clerics were over-powered relative to the mages. Certainly clerics are powerful, but consider:
- Mages start with spells at 1st level, Clerics do not.
- At every level, mage spells tend to be more powerful than cleric spells. For example, Fireball is a 3rd level arcane spell; Flamestrike, similar in effect, is a 5th level cleric spell.
- The most powerful cleric spell, Finger of Death (the reverse of Restore Life and Limb), seems powerful, as it is a save or die effect that the cleric gains at 7th level; but a 7th level mage can take Polymorph Other, which can be used for a save or die effect or for other purposes, and is harder to save against.
- Clerics never get 6th level spells or 8th or 9th level ritual magic, while Mages do.
- Magic items usable by mages, such as the various staffs and wands, tend to substantially broaden their available repertoire of spells, relative to the magic items available to Clerics.
In any event, I’m aware that opinions will vary widely on how magic ought best be implemented in a fantasy game, so I won’t be offended if someone wants to give mages more spells to choose from, or limit clerics to memorization, or whatever they’d like. But I can say with certainty that the ACKS method works and
Fabio Milito Pagliara: thanks for the answer, while I have not tried to go from 1st to 14th level with acks (maybe in august?) I tested a similar magic system at the time and this was a problem (the fact that the cleric had more spell to choose from), I am not suggesting to put back the cleric but to reconsider the limit of spell in the spell-book, maybe considering a short list as it is now and a long list with other limitation, I think the big problem is when the mage has no reason to go around researching all kind of spells, that’s all