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So in BG/BG2 the spell system evolved into a chess match (at least with mods installed) where your mages needed to protect your grunts while dispelling protections on opposing mages and fighters. The reason it got there was due to the vast number of spells in the D&D system. There was also a clear difference in divine/arcane spells with druid spells thrown in for good measure.

 

The whole soul thing already seems sort of limiting to a magic system but do we think this game will manage to get to the same level of complexity and the same number of spells?

 

One thing I hate are magic systems that level spells. A lvl 1 firebolt does 10 dmage while a lvlv 5 firebolt does 50 damage. Lazy game design if you ask me and I hope this game does not go down that route.

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As much as I love the Infinity Engine games, I despise Vancian casting with a vengeance. Always have, always will. Other than that most everything is fine with me.

That said, I do not like spells rising in mana cost as you gain experience levels.

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Proud Probatanthrope @D:OS

Tor.com: Boob Plate Armor Would Kill You (cf. "ball plate armor" - Just think about it.)

 

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Do away with mana, instead introduce cooldowns. The bigger the spell, the longer the cooldown. Introducing mana most often leads to either a) potion chucking b) mana depletion , and both of those are bad. Also the D&D way of having only limited number of casts available before resting is a balancing nightmare, because it doesn't differentiate a equal level nuke spell from equal level utility spell, which means if mages stack their memory with nukes they completely overpower their enemies, while those players who use buff/utility spells get shafted IF the game is balanced for pure nukers in mind.

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Screw spells. Swords, shields, clubs and arrows FTW.

 

That said, if there are to be spells and magical abilities and such, I would hope that it's done in a different way rather than Mana/Magic Points/whatever with either a legion of spells that you'll never use, or a severely truncated selection of a massive list of spells.

 

The catch could be if spells come from a character's HP rather than MP - it could balance things out if magic spells are overpowered.

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Dawes ain't too bright. Hitting rock bottom is when you leave 2 tickets on the dash of your car, leave it unlocked hoping someone will steal them & when you come back, there are 4 tickets on your dashboard.
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I liked the Arcanum system of fatigue instead of mana- so it was used by both warriors and mages, and if you used too much you collapsed into unconsciousness... JUST killing an enemy with a last ditch spell and collapsing, but still safe was incredibly rewarding!

 

My ultimate would be a mixture of vancian memorising for which spells can be cast, allowing the spellbook to be very complex, but the fatigue system for how often they can be cast.

 

Regarding scaling- I think the power of certain spells should increase with level, as that suggests greater skill, but the fatigue use shouldn't increase (as what's the point of increasing levels of fatigue/mana if the spells scale also?)

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As much as I love the Infinity Engine games, I despise Vancian casting with a vengeance. Always have, always will. Other than that most everything is fine with me.

That said, I do not like spells rising in mana cost as you gain experience levels.

 

I for one greatly enjoy the Vancian system, but only when the game was designed with limited resting. That added a layer of strategic resource management on top of tactical combat - limiting my resting as a houserule greatly improved my experience with all Infinity Engine, since I had to save my spells and couldn't just treat my hitpoints as disposable (or rather, was 'forced' to spend some gold on potions and scrolls).

 

But if the developers choose to go with another system with a purely tactical focus, no big deal on my part. Also, as Magic is my most important gameplay feature, I'm curious to see what they've got planned.

Edited by Delterius
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What about action points similar to SPECIAL, but this time it would be used for all attacks (range, melee, magic). It would limit the number of any type of attacks one can do per round, AND enable mixing of attacks (cast fireball, switch to sword, swing) without introducing cumbersome systems like fatigue/mana/rage.

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Perhaps two forms of magic: Small invocations for combat, conversation and such that are quickly cast and easy to learn. Ritual magic for healing, divination and the larger spells that requires grimoires, components and all manner of arcane paraphernalia.

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Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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What if you actually had to recite the spells into your microphone so you eliminate mana and potions altogether and the only thing that magic depends on is the ability for the caster to remember all the different incantations they wish to use?:p

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What if you actually had to recite the spells into your microphone so you eliminate mana and potions altogether and the only thing that magic depends on is the ability for the caster to remember all the different incantations they wish to use? :p

 

Considering the inclusion of a pause mechanic, I don't think opening your spellbook and reading the incantation would be that much of a test.

 

But wordplay as a gameplay feature? Count me interested.

 

Microphone thing? No, thanks.

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What if you actually had to recite the spells into your microphone so you eliminate mana and potions altogether and the only thing that magic depends on is the ability for the caster to remember all the different incantations they wish to use? :p

 

 

I've always thought that would be a cool optional add on to a game, another optional add on would be signing on the screen, ala black & white, this would be particularly cool if the game is released with tablet support.

 

Such add-ons would promote skills other than clicking on a mouse to become better in the game, and they could add bonuses too- ie making spells faster to cast etc.

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Not at all a fan of "memorized spells" ala D&D. And spell points solves this but have their own problems. Sure points can regen, and you could have spells consume activity points.

 

But how about a system where instead you get diminishing returns? The more you've used a type of spell recently the less effective it becomes. Give it a rest and you're back to full effectiveness. That way you always have something to use in an emergency. With higher ability you would be able to use less potent spells very often without much diminishment, but the more powerful spells diminish greatly after even one usage. A really powerful spell would require a bit of time to prepare and some time to cast and then some bit of rest. I could even imagine the magic user trying to blast through a barrier and the rest of the party has to protect him for the duration.

 

The system could apply to all major abilities, not just spells. Ie, when picking a lot you could repeat the pick,pick,pick,pick rapidly but get nowhere, but slow down and take your time to study the lock and it is then easy to open. Or wind up for a very big axe blow and then get tired, or else lots of tinier weaker axe blows instead.

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It would be very intersting to see some sort of ritual magic. It takes time, components, procedures. Not something you do in combat but something useful to do at other times. For instance the bigger healing spells might require this, or the creation of enchantments. That's what the original D&D hinted at, but you just told the DM "I spend 2 hours memorizing my spells" and got it over with, and soon most DMs forgot all about components. Obtaining the right components could even be a goal of the party.

 

I'd like to see one specialty of magic, of course we also have a flashy magic user specialty as well. Ie, subtle means debuffing your enemy so that they miss more, don't hit as hard, get confused. Reducing the damage taken is better than healing the damage afterwords. If you charm an enemy to fight for you it could involve the spell caster remaining immobile for the duration, and not just a cast-and-forget. Think more like "these are not the droids you're looking for" and less like "pew pew".

 

Also magic users probably should not be stereotypical robe wearers with daggers. There's no logical reason that they can't hold a sword and put on armor. It's a dangerous world out there! Maybe they don't know how to use a sword of course and they'd be clumsy in heavy chain mail, but it shouldn't be a hard restriction. Unless there's some sort of world based restriction that's clearly explained.

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I like the Vancian system primarily becase it encourages a wide variety of play styles and makes you plan ahead. If you have all your spells at your disposal where is the tactical thinking? And the more spells out there the more decisions you need to make which encourages the implemintation of extra spells. If this game doesn not come with over 200 spells I'm going to be pissed.

 

How many times in the IE games did you pause to peruse your available spells, curse your lack of planning and then cast the most usfull spell availble.

Edited by oldmanpaco

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I like the Vancian system primarily becase it encourages a wide variety of play styles and makes you plan ahead. If you have all your spells at your disposal where is the tactical thinking?

 

How many times in the IE games did you pause to peruse your available spells, curse your lack of planning and then cast the most usfull spell availble.

 

Well, the tactical thinking lies in taking advantage of the moment. Sure, not being able to cast every spell you know did make for interesting situations when you had to survive a encounter without a (seemingly) vital tool, but you don't need a Vancian system (or anything as limiting to spellcasting) to have tactical thinking. Most importantly, Vancian casting force strategic thinking, that is planning ahead.

 

I remember needing negative plane protection but memorizing healing spells instead. Healing of all things. To save on potions.

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Hey, I get to quote Dak'kon: "Balance in all things."

 

For me, the important part is that mages not be useless "I cast light!... and then get gibbed by a coyote..." waifs for their first however many levels, and warriors not be useless piles of metal that get destroyed by summoned creatures (or even transformed mages), debuffs that they're powerless to fight, and nuke spells. Mages should be competent in the early goings (or if you prefer, early-game fighters should be as weak as early-game mages), and shouldn't be walking gods by the end.

 

So, uh... I guess that puts me in the "nay" category on the vancian magic thing. If we're voting on that.

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To clarify: That D&D-style Vancian casting cramps my play style is annoying, but that's not that big a deal. I despise it because losing knowledge with use makes no sense whatsoever no matter how you spin it. It's about the gamiest magic system there is. Which is why almost all my D&D magic users are 3.5e sorcerers (and most of my P&P magic users aren't D&D).

 

I liked the Arcanum system of fatigue instead of mana- so it was used by both warriors and mages, and if you used too much you collapsed into unconsciousness... JUST killing an enemy with a last ditch spell and collapsing, but still safe was incredibly rewarding!

I gotta admit I never ventured far into Arcanum because the microscopic resolution bothered the hell out of me, but that sounds cool, yes.

 

My ultimate would be a mixture of vancian memorising for which spells can be cast, allowing the spellbook to be very complex, but the fatigue system for how often they can be cast.

I could very well live with that. Probably the most realistic for (literally) spell-(and/or-sign-)based magic.

That said I actually prefer freeform intuitive magic (and am not a fan of ingredients-reliant magic in RPGs), but like I said, as long as it isn't standard D&D, I'm happy.

 

Regarding scaling- I think the power of certain spells should increase with level, as that suggests greater skill, but the fatigue use shouldn't increase (as what's the point of increasing levels of fatigue/mana if the spells scale also?)

Exactly.

IMHO spell effects shouldn't be affected by character level at all, only by the actual stats and even then not too much, i.e. spells should slowly gain in effect (and if anything the cost should slowly decrease, never increase). Meaning at higher levels you can either churn out little bolts like nobody's business or concentrate on a couple of big whammies, or anything inbetween.

Proud Probatanthrope @D:OS

Tor.com: Boob Plate Armor Would Kill You (cf. "ball plate armor" - Just think about it.)

 

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To clarify: That D&D-style Vancian casting cramps my play style is annoying, but that's not that big a deal. I despise it because losing knowledge with use makes no sense whatsoever no matter how you spin it. It's about the gamiest magic system there is. Which is why almost all my D&D magic users are 3.5e sorcerers (and most of my P&P magic users aren't D&D).

 

Wasn't it in 3rd edition that they stopped using the word memorization in favour of preparation? In the sense that most of the spells are cast as the Wizard studies his spellbook and what you actually see him doing is merely triggering the magic?

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That's just exchanging one form of ridiculousness for another.

 

(Not that I ever met anyone that didn't think of preparation as still meaning memorization.)

 

As much as I hate 4e, I have to admit that it's take on magic can be interpreted in a way that makes sense. But since it uses the very same for non-magic classes, it's nonsensical in a different way.

Proud Probatanthrope @D:OS

Tor.com: Boob Plate Armor Would Kill You (cf. "ball plate armor" - Just think about it.)

 

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How about utility spells are permanantly known but use a lot of energy and dps spells are learned on rest (so you can't spam and overpower) and use a small amount of energy or vice versa.

 

I don't know, :p I'm just trying to think of magic use in a lot of games I've played and how they play out in combat.

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I don't get it. So the vancian interpretation I cited was actually for 4e and its somehow ridiculous but sensical?

 

And I confess, I don't know much about D&D, but how does that apply to non-magic users?

How about utility spells are permanantly known but use a lot of energy and dps spells are learned on rest (so you can't spam and overpower) and use a small amount of energy or vice versa.

 

I don't know, :p I'm just trying to think of magic use in a lot of games I've played and how they play out in combat.

 

Problem is, if anything Wizards in IE games are best for their utility in combat than their dps power. Especially IWD 2, I think (since it doesn't use 2e).

 

I was thinking.

 

Magic should be very limited, because otherwise you may find yourself casting 10 lightning bolts a battle and (due to gameplay reasons) it will take you 5 of those lightning bolts to kill a human being. Therefore, to keep magic from being nerfed for the greater good of Balance, overall spellcasting should be limited no matter if the system is Vancian or otherwise.

 

But to keep the tactical and strategic depht of Vancian, I believe that memorization should still play a part in combat, by making spells actually practical. If a un-memorized 'magic missile' has a unreasonble cast time, then you should memorize it if you think it will be useful in the coming adventure.

Edited by Delterius
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Please, make magic system deep, complex, and powerful. Spells should not be limited summon and direct damage. When in battle mage running around, waiting couples recharge direct damage spells - it is a bad system. Should be defence spell (not -15% from damage!) versus different threats, spell like time stop, teleport and so on.

I think the best magic system was in BG2. Please do no worse.

Sorry fo my bad English.

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I don't get it. So the vancian interpretation I cited was actually for 4e and its somehow ridiculous but sensical?

 

And I confess, I don't know much about D&D, but how does that apply to non-magic users?

How about utility spells are permanantly known but use a lot of energy and dps spells are learned on rest (so you can't spam and overpower) and use a small amount of energy or vice versa.

 

I don't know, :p I'm just trying to think of magic use in a lot of games I've played and how they play out in combat.

 

Problem is, if anything Wizards in IE games are best for their utility in combat than their dps power. Especially IWD 2, I think (since it doesn't use 2e).

 

I was thinking.

 

Magic should be very limited, because otherwise you may find yourself casting 10 lightning bolts a battle and (due to gameplay reasons) it will take you 5 of those lightning bolts to kill a human being. Therefore, to keep magic from being nerfed for the greater good of Balance, overall spellcasting should be limited no matter if the system is Vancian or otherwise.

 

But to keep the tactical and strategic depht of Vancian, I believe that memorization should still play a part in combat, by making spells actually practical. If a un-memorized 'magic missile' has a unreasonble cast time, then you should memorize it if you think it will be useful in the coming adventure.

 

I agree with magic being limited somehow. The balance between utility and damage is important, I think. If the utility spells took a lot of resource to cast they would deter you from using them in combat correct? But you might buff your party before a big, expected, fight and then get your energy back somehow. (out of combat pots? faster regen?) and then once you were in combat the cheapness of fireballs or whatever would encourage you to stick to those but then if someone cast a stun or something you would have to make a judgement call whether to cast a costly utility spell to counter it.

 

I hope im making sense :3 I like memorisation as a feature.

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I don't get it. So the vancian interpretation I cited was actually for 4e and its somehow ridiculous but sensical?

 

And I confess, I don't know much about D&D, but how does that apply to non-magic users?

Ah, no, the comment on 4e was a seperate one for completeness' sake.

 

In D&D4e physical skills and magical spells are functionally identical powers on about a half-way point between the two former(ly) distinct categories. Lore-breaking cheap balancing at its "finest".

Proud Probatanthrope @D:OS

Tor.com: Boob Plate Armor Would Kill You (cf. "ball plate armor" - Just think about it.)

 

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