Author Topic: Making Epic Spellcasting Balanced, Pre-Epic  (Read 148 times)

PlzBreakMyCampaign

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Making Epic Spellcasting Balanced, Pre-Epic
« on: June 25, 2017, 04:17:04 PM »
Since I'm doubting Soro will finish his Epic in Pre-epic thread, consider this the place to talk about all things epic casting related.

0a. 10th level and up spell slots granted via the Improved Spell Capacity feat aren't epic spell casting per se
0b. The Epic Spellcasting feat allows you to "develop and cast epic spells" but, for now, to keep the discussion simple, let's assume the feat wasn't necessary and that no epic feats existed. We can tackle the feats later. We're just talking about epic casting itself right now.

1.
You can "cast epic spells [...] a number of open epic spell slots per day equal to one-tenth his or her ranks in the Knowledge skill appropriate to the spell and the caster’s class." They are Knowledge (aracana), Knowledge (religion) and Knowledge (nature). The above feat mentions that these stack, but DMs are likely to require fully progressed multiclassing before the second knowledge skill gives additional slots. Normally that would be hard for a Wizard 17 / x 3 character, although specialized builds like an ur-priest / blighter could manage 4 rather than 2 slots. If you want to be rule-lawyery to gain the 5th and 6th slots, remember that by throwing out (or giving for free) the epic spellcasting feat, a monk could also gain epic spells.

2. "Metamagic feats and other epic feats that manipulate normal spells cannot be used with epic spells." If epic feats can't even modify epic casting, regular feats surely can't. You'll notice the x2 for extending spells rather than being able to apply a wimpy extend spell feat to a powerful epic spell. Suddenly all of your old, high level casting tricks don't work anymore. It reminds me of people glossing over the fact that artificers aren't spellcasters. A lot of the power actually comes from those old patterns that don't just work now.

3a. Custom Epic spells should have no "guesswork and rules stretching" and should always have the "worst of all worlds" rather than the caster just choosing whatever is best. This means that all epic spells, rather than just some, have all the spell schools associated with the seeds.
3b. The Range, Targets, Area, and Effects lines all chose the worst value, additively. Nothing is stopping you from changing the target and area line before combining each seed so that they still make sense. It just costs more spellcraft.
3c. Similar to SR, saving throws are all added separately, allowing multiple instances of one save or even many instances of multiple different saves.
3d. Seeds still require a save if it deals damage, in addition to requiring a successful attack roll.
3e. Touch or ranged attack seeds still require an attack roll if it deals damage as a targeted seed, in addition to requiring a saving throw.

4. There is no recording of epic spells. You will always pay to learn/develop both existing and custom epic spells.

5. There is no additional participant mitigating factor. You can't chain gate solars for circle magic on crack.

6. Dirty-trick fix the seeds: the Armor, Conjure, Fortify, Reflect, Summon, Transfer, and Ward seeds have certain effects removed (see below). This is either to prevent TO things like loops, or because they replicate an effect already banned in any serious, balanced game. Specially they are, in order,:
(click to show/hide)

The Epic spell factors you will want:
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Custom mitigation factors that are worth it:
Code: [Select]
Everyone is going to select +20DC on in-combat custom epic spells since feats & MM don't apply to epic spells.
Everyone is going to select +10min casting time for -20 DC on buffs
Everyone is going to select 2*HD d6 backlash for -2*HD DC on instantaneous spells. Share pain/vigor is assumed.

Quick Notes on the Seeds:
(click to show/hide)

Costs:
(click to show/hide)
Sigh. Not again. :(