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Lesser Spell Caster
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Ars Mysteriorum
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2009 5:47 pm    Post subject: Lesser Spell Caster Reply with quote

Has anyone kicked around the idea of perhaps amplifying the OD&D concept of the paladin/bard by creating cheaper spell circles that are maybe limited to 4th circle and about 3 spells per day in a circle max?

This idea just struck me...

Anyone think it's worth exploring?
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JimmySwill
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2009 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I definitely think it's worth exploring.

I think the primary thing would be to make sure these lesser casters weren't getting the same or more than regular casters at any point for a lower cost.

Paladin's could be cool as you could restrict their magic to Benefaction only, maybe 1st-3rd. Paladin Potential and Paladin Circles. Maybe call it something different. I suppose you could do something similar with Bards, maybe just allowing a couple of schools of Hedge Magic? What do you think?

You know Ars M., you keep dropping these good ideas... Do you mind moving this to the WGJ forum? I think we should develop this for the 2nd issue.
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Ars Mysteriorum
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JimmySwill wrote:
Yeah, I definitely think it's worth exploring.

I think the primary thing would be to make sure these lesser casters weren't getting the same or more than regular casters at any point for a lower cost.

Paladin's could be cool as you could restrict their magic to Benefaction only, maybe 1st-3rd. Paladin Potential and Paladin Circles. Maybe call it something different. I suppose you could do something similar with Bards, maybe just allowing a couple of schools of Hedge Magic? What do you think?

You know Ars M., you keep dropping these good ideas... Do you mind moving this to the WGJ forum? I think we should develop this for the 2nd issue.


I think that's perfect.

For faith you choose one domain, for Hermetic, maybe something like two or three schools (gotta look into that). Maybe no extra spells/spell points and a max of four levels for the Discipline.

I'll be honest, I've had a hellish couple of weeks between work and whatnot, so my brain's scrambled. This may change how I'm doing factions a little, though I like playing with the idea of some factions providing abilities of a sort.

I'm still musing on it, as per usual.

EDIT: And yes, by all means! Let's move this!

I like to move it, move it
I like to move it, move it
I like to move it, move it
I like to
MOVE IT

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Gregory Vrill
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 10:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I went to a record store one day way way way back when and I was like

"Hey, do you have a copy of that dance song called, uh, 'I Like To Mold It'?"
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JimmySwill
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 9:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It would be nice to structure this in a way that folk could easily create their own lesser caster disciplines. Just some thoughts here:

I still think attribute bonuses should apply for bonus spells. I think it's an unnecessary distinction. However, I agree the Circle should be capped. I'm thinking 3rd Circle. I see 1-3rd as 1st tier magic, 4-6 as 2nd tier, and 7-8th as 3rd tier.

For lesser Faith magic, maybe it could be called something like Cleric Potential. You could have Cleric Potential: Benefaction, Cleric Potential: Damnation, etc... Or maybe just call it Lesser Faith Magic Potential. The mechanics might be the same, except the initial cost could be 20 skill points, and Circles cost (5 + 3 x Circle) or 8, 11 and 14. In terms of the gods, I think the Potential should be in the deity's primary domain (or one of them if it has two).

For Hedge or Hermetic, I think it might be interesting to treat it somewhat like specialization. However, my personal preference would be to restrict this to Hedge magic only. I kind of see Hedge magic as the magic of the people, and Hermetic to be tough to crack. -That probably has a lot to do with Greg's Twylos.

Anyway, I'd do one of two things. I'd either make subclasses, like: Soothsayer: Divination, Alteration, Charm; Tinkerer: Artifice, Alteration, Jinx; Trickster: Illusion, Charm, Jinx.

Or, use a circle like this:



...and let the character pick any one school to center on, getting them access to the two adjacent ones. Lesser Hedge Magic might cost 15 skill pts, and Circles might be 8, 11 and 14, stopping at 3rd Circle.

Just thoughts. Ideas?
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Ars Mysteriorum
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I say we mix the two ideas and do six conceptual "classes" to guide the feel of the kind of lesser spellcaster a character is gearing towards.

By the way Jimmy, you are brilliant and awesome. I like the idea of having to buy a potential so it's something that comes later in the game. I think first circle is included with buying the potential, is that agreed?

Also, I agree on the count of keeping hermetic magic its own thing. That sort of power is just kind of all or nothing in my mind as well.

Ritual Magic may also end up being it's own thing as well... I'm not sure about that...

What do you think? I was thinking for the Ranger archetype using Ritual Magic, but that can kind of be duplicated using Tellurgy Faith Magic, don't you think?
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JimmySwill
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh yeah, you're right about the 1st Circle. -That'd be automatic.

I'm cool with thinking of this in terms of archetypes. So are you thinking of six lesser spellcaster types in particular?

I like Ritual and Hermetic being their own things. But, it's just a matter of taste. I see the Minor Faith Magic being granted to a champion or lesser clergy-type, whereas Minor Hedge is just that, someone that really just tinkers with Hedge Magic, a magician or bard type.

I've never really understood the classic ranger as a spellcaster, but could see a ranger type worshiping a deity of naturalism, so that accomplishes that fine for me. Actually, that'd be a pretty fun character to make. I think after we do this, I'll make one for the Hall of NPCs.

So how is Lesser Hedge Magic: 15 for Potential, 11 for 2nd Circle, 14 for 3rd Circle, and Lesser Faith Magic: 20 for Potential, 11 for 2nd Circle, 14 for 3rd Circle?
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Ars Mysteriorum
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JimmySwill wrote:
Oh yeah, you're right about the 1st Circle. -That'd be automatic.

I'm cool with thinking of this in terms of archetypes. So are you thinking of six lesser spellcaster types in particular?

I like Ritual and Hermetic being their own things. But, it's just a matter of taste. I see the Minor Faith Magic being granted to a champion or lesser clergy-type, whereas Minor Hedge is just that, someone that really just tinkers with Hedge Magic, a magician or bard type.

I've never really understood the classic ranger as a spellcaster, but could see a ranger type worshiping a deity of naturalism, so that accomplishes that fine for me. Actually, that'd be a pretty fun character to make. I think after we do this, I'll make one for the Hall of NPCs.

So how is Lesser Hedge Magic: 15 for Potential, 11 for 2nd Circle, 14 for 3rd Circle, and Lesser Faith Magic: 20 for Potential, 11 for 2nd Circle, 14 for 3rd Circle?


I'm going back and forth in my head on the six concepts... sometimes limitations make things a bit more interesting and flavorful than simply "you can do whatever you want."

Does that make sense?

Yeah, spellcasting rangers made little sense in D&D, but I think that's because D&D was so bombastically magical about it. If it was lower key, which I think Wayfarers is, where it may or may not be magic, but is definitely the ranger's attunement with his environment (a la Aragorn and the elves), that's deep and compelling.

But yeah.

Hmmm... I'm going to be forthright. I have no idea on how to deduce what costs what. I'm going to make a character using the point costs you proposed and see how it turns out.

Jimmy, this is most definitely all you. Do you eat system for breakfast?
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JimmySwill
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2009 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ars Mysteriorum wrote:
Do you eat system for breakfast?


Actually, I stick to coffee. I think that 'most important meal of the day' stuff is overrated.

I can handle the point costs. I've got a pretty good feel, but I can still get it wrong too. -I'd just like to package this up in a neat manner so it might be easily applied.

I agree what you said about limitations. I think they are important. It's much better to make a system that can be extended rather than make an ever-expansive system. That's partly why I don't like authoritative supplements. The WGJ is more like a conversation amongst players, rather than a product of new material. There's a bad creep that happens with constant new material. Things get too watered-down. I expect any group might just select one or two ideas from a WGJ issue and use them, but never use them all.

Anyway, back to the lesser spell casters. Ok, I think we are good with the 4 subtypes of Lesser Faith Magic.

What do you think about the Hedge? Three defined subtypes? Pick any three schools? Or, something like the circle diagram with related and opposed schools, allowing for 6 subtypes? Or, are lesser Hedge even necessary? Should we just do Lesser Faith here? -A bard might just be a guy that buys a bit of Hedge Magic, but not too much. Since the domain opposition is built in Faith Magic, it's very reasonable why a Lesser Follower might be limited in Circles and Domains. However, it is a bit more difficult to argue why Hedge schools should be exclusive... hm.
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Ars Mysteriorum
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2009 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thinking it over, Lesser Hedge is a bit superfluous.

As you said, someone wanting to be a Bard can just buy a few levels and be satisfied. If a character really wants access to a few of the spells, I think we can make that work with what I have in mind for Factions (where certain factions allow access to buying a single spell as a trained, uses-per-day ability to supplement its intent).

So, let's look at Forgotten Realms' Harpers as an example faction, even if it is lame for being Forgotten Realms. This faction would be the source of the few spells the Bard-member has access to from Faction officers/trainers/leaders rather than as a "gee, look what I get after hitting a certain level." Obviously, the Wayfarers "Harper" wouldn't get nearly as many spells (maybe three at most), but it fits the concept and is enough to color the character as something apart from the usual lute-strumming swashbuckler.

That said, calling the Discipline itself Lesser Faith is actually more suitable than I initially thought. It need not stem from study or strong belief in a deity, but a single, focused concept. Certainly lesser gods can offer this sort of magic, but I don't think that's the exception.

Sorry for my sporadic responses, but weekends are pretty much the only time I get to dedicate time to actually putting to paper/Macintosh Pages the stuff I've been ruminating on all week.
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JimmySwill
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2009 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm in agreement Ars M. I think what we were initially thinking for the Bard with Hedge might be redundant. However, I'm looking forward to seeing what you've got going on these factions. I still like the very limited spell discipline you're describing.

I also agree about the Lesser Faith Magic. I'm planning a write up of Lesser Faith Magic for the WGJ2. I'll shoot it over to you after I've got a draft and see what you think. Basically I'll describe what we have and maybe give an example or two. -I'll go over and add that to the list of WGJ2 topics right now.
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Rex
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 9:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After reading the magic sections and the article on Lesser Faith Magic I came up with this for Lesser Magig for the other 3 types of Magic. Let me know what you think.

Lesser Hedge Magic 15 points; able to learn from 2 schools and limited to 2nd circle Spells. Spell Circle= 6 pts + (3 X Circle)

Lesser Hermetic Magic 25 points; able to cast from 3 schools and limited to 3 rd circle Spells Spell Circle= 7 points + (3 x Circle)

Lesser Ritual Magic 15 points; Ritual Points as in Book but limited to 2nd circle Rituals Spell Circle= 6 + (3 x Circle)
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Gregory Vrill
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that's reasonable. If you end up playtesting it, let us know how it goes.

We occasionally write up house rules and modifications to the system for the, eh, 'Wayfarers Guild Journal'. Lesser Spellcasting is something that really needs to be in there.

Thinking about it, the cost of Magic Potential helps define how low- or high-magic a world is. I think it'd also be interesting if someone could learn a single spell, and that was it. Takes care of Sorcerer's Apprentice-type freaks and D&D Paladins laying-on-of-hands.
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JimmySwill
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 11:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rex wrote:
Lesser Hedge Magic 15 points; able to learn from 2 schools and limited to 2nd circle Spells. Spell Circle= 6 pts + (3 X Circle)

Lesser Hermetic Magic 25 points; able to cast from 3 schools and limited to 3 rd circle Spells Spell Circle= 7 points + (3 x Circle)

Lesser Ritual Magic 15 points; Ritual Points as in Book but limited to 2nd circle Rituals Spell Circle= 6 + (3 x Circle)

I like the idea of school limits for Hedge and Hermetic, Rex. Specialist magic. It might be interesting to not limit the Circles, but only the schools. Not sure... The one problem I can see running into with lesser magic is players asking to become full-blown casters at a reduced cost once they max out as a lesser caster. -That could game the system a bit. I think you'd have to come down hard on that, likely making them pay the difference and then some.

As for Ritual, would it work to limit the spheres and make one unavailable? i.e. the caster cannot use 'Dream' spell points? Looking at the list, that might work.

This would definitely be good material for WGJ3. Let me know if you play-test it, and/or think on it more. I'll definitely get back to you about this as we get close to WGJ3. Greg makes a good point about adjusting potential costs for setting. Lesser magic could be the most common form.

And Greg, Rex was referring to reading the Lesser Faith magic in WGJ2. Ars. M and I have a little article there. Smile
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Dartavian
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 12:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We will definitely play test your idea Rex. I plan on everyone doing the preliminary work this weekend on character creation and the campaign. You may give Rasfrasen a call before we get together this weekend and see what his take on it is. Since finger wigglers are his specialty.

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