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How 'bout some actual caster weapons


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I define a caster weapon as something that augments spells in some way. These are really rare in PoE1. I mean there's Rimecutter, Unforgiven, Gudasthunyr which to some degree fit the bill... and to get them you need to hope for Azzuro, kill a dragon or kill a really mean dragon. But more importantly, a might or attack speed bonus is exciting for melee too, definitely if you superb the weapon up whereas none of that really interests a caster. Actually attacking with the weapon is Plan C.

 

So, for starters, I would like staves and daggers to enhance spellcasting in some way. Yes, the basic white items. Doesn't need to be anything big. +5 accuracy to spells or +1 DR penetration. Just something that makes them better than your bare hands for spellcasting. Now you might say, why only staves and daggers? Well, wands and the likes have the benefit that you can make a ranged attack from relative safety which makes them a better Plan C. But as for all the other melee weapons (maybe maces for priests though), I admit I am biased towards traditional mage weapons.

 

And then, when you get a fine staff, it enhances spellcasting a little more, just like a fine greatsword is an upgrade for the fighter's basic greatsword. And then on the cool named ones, we have things like attack speed (which is still also casting speed I hope), stat bonuses... I'd also like chance on SPELL hit/crit procs.

 

I mean, last I checked in Diablo 3 how hard you nuke with a staff is proportional to how hard you hit with it. Straight up uses weapon damage as a coefficient for spell damage. I'm not asking to take it that far, but I really don't want to have to kill a dragon to get a weapon that is useful to my wizard beyond their ability to swing it, and I want fine/exceptional/superb/mythic to also mean something for spellcasting, and chance on hit to work for spells.

 

And I would like a magnificent wedding cake! Okay not particularly, but let's pretend I do so that giving me everything else I requested feels like an acceptable compromise.

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If you make staves have caster specific bonuses then my devoted monk wouldn't be able to weapon focus them...  I suppose there could be 2 classes of stave, one for casters, one not, not to mention daggers, which might also commonly be consider a rogue weapon.

Edited by Climhazzard
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personally id really like it if they made more "combat staffs"... aside from the basic ones (which admittedly you can enchant) i dont remember finding any unique ones that didnt have some sort of jewel or ornament or whatever at the "top" end of it. I'd like more staffs that are for cracking heads (yes, my priest likes to fight with a staff so there) ... you know, having metal reinforcements at either end (being symmetrical) and perhaps even having the lash effect on both ends ... stuff like that. Most unique staffs look too much like a mage's staff for me... 

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Yes, if you look at Sawyer's recent talk, he is trying to get away from the wizards in dresses using staves and daggers trope, and is somewhat frustrated by player-inertia. PoE wizards should be equally effective with full plate and dual scimitars. The last thing Obsidian want is to tie them to specific weapons.

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Everyone knows Science Fiction is really cool. You know what PoE really needs? Spaceships! There isn't any game that wouldn't be improved by a space combat minigame. Adding one to PoE would send sales skyrocketing, and ensure the game was remembered for all time!!!!!

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Okay, I see your points. But what remains is that a fighter with a standard greatsword vs. a fighter with Tidefall is a massive difference, whereas for a wizard it's like... yeah okay it matters if I actually attack. It's really unexciting to get a "better" weapon for a caster unless it's something like Unforgiven/Gudansthunyr, whereas a fighter feels good just going from basic to fine.

 

If we're not making caster weapons then we should make fine/exceptional etc. enhance spell damage and accuracy too, because until you get to these dragon-protected specialties a weapon upgrade for a caster is just an improvement to their C game. A big weapon for a fighter improves all their games, their per-lifetime super abilities as well as their "trash pack AFK let the AI handle it" auto-attacks.

Out With The Good: The mod for tidying up your Deadfire combat tooltip.
Waukeen's Berth: Make all your basic purchases at Queen's Berth.
Nemnok's Congregation: Lets all priests express their true faith.

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This could be easily done with unique enchantments. This way a wizard could have his bonus to casting while the whole weapon group wouldn't get tied to casters.

 

Like Spelltongue's Time Siphon speeds up your casting recovery.

 

A weapon could have the same enchantment as the Braces of Spiritual power have (10% dmg bonus to spells), or the overseeing enchantment or such.

Edited by Boeroer

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If you make staves have caster specific bonuses then my devoted monk wouldn't be able to weapon focus them...  I suppose there could be 2 classes of stave, one for casters, one not, not to mention daggers, which might also commonly be consider a rogue weapon.

 

You could have a mix. Some staves being suited for casters and some for melee. This needn't be limited to staves of course, other weapon types should be included too.

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@omgFIREBALLS, to an extend there are already a few "casting" weapons. For example The Flames of Fair Rhîan sabre. Although yes, it's still more effective on a let's say rogue than on a spellcaster.

 

Tbh I like that idea, and can imagine:

- a monk/cipher with a staff that makes it easier to channel powers, and for example either provides a bonus to power level, or has some sort of passive "speed" that also speeds up casting; or has a chance to hit all enemies in a straight line

- or a a paladin with some sort of holy sword that increases all fire damage and/or healing dome

- or a wand that comes with a channeling ability which steal 2 power_levels every 3s from a target enemy

etc

Edited by MaxQuest
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This could be easily done with unique enchantments.

But then we're barely improving over PoE1. You still have to find some obscure item to buff up your spellcasting, whereas a sword is upgraded by a fine sword, available in countless places.

 

For example The Flames of Fair Rhîan sabre.

On account of what, giving you extra Fireballs? It doesn't really qualify for me. Pretty much every weapon you can come up with ends up as, it does this thing that in a way enhances spells, but this same thing also enhances melee abilities, and a fighter could wipe out a village with it in half an hour. It's not a caster weapon in my book as long as it does way more for melee.

 

I see the design philosophy behind not wanting weapons that are for casters only but we don't need to go there, we just need to give casters the same smooth weapon progression that fighters have. There are loads of weapons that are effectively for not-casters only, because they have no value beyond what they can smack someone for and at least my casters don't smack in a difficult fight.

Edited by omgFIREBALLS

Out With The Good: The mod for tidying up your Deadfire combat tooltip.
Waukeen's Berth: Make all your basic purchases at Queen's Berth.
Nemnok's Congregation: Lets all priests express their true faith.

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This could be easily done with unique enchantments.

But then we're barely improving over PoE1. You still have to find some obscure item to buff up your spellcasting, whereas a sword is upgraded by a fine sword, available in countless places.

 

For example The Flames of Fair Rhîan sabre.

On account of what, giving you extra Fireballs? It doesn't really qualify for me. Pretty much every weapon you can come up with ends up as, it does this thing that in a way enhances spells, but this same thing also enhances melee abilities, and a fighter could wipe out a village with it in half an hour. It's not a caster weapon in my book as long as it does way more for melee.

 

I see the design philosophy behind not wanting weapons that are for casters only but we don't need to go there, we just need to give casters the same smooth weapon progression that fighters have. There are loads of weapons that are effectively for not-casters only, because they have no value beyond what they can smack someone for and at least my casters don't smack in a difficult fight.

 

I'm sure someone can correct me if i'm wrong but as far as ive seen a mage or druid or priest has far more active abilities (in the form of spells) then the fighter, ranger or rogue... A class based system will inherently have classes that are more gear dependent then others. A warrior's main source of damage is as you say immediately affected by his weapon... a mage's is not. If we flip the coin in reverse then why not give not caster classes the same number of "spells" (for lack of a better word) as the caster classes?! I mean, why does my mage get 3 extra spells at level up (potential sources of damage, CC, etc.) while my warrior gets one (at best) ?! ... that doesnt seem fair does it? I know i'm pushing the argument a bit... but there are no "caster specific" weapons imho simply because casters are not dependent on weapons inherently for damage... i think adding an extra layer for casters only would just add to the imbalance of caster vs non-caster i mentioned above cause you basically want to have your cake and eat it too... Dunno, maybe it can be implemented in a way that doesnt disadvantage non-casters (who depend on weapons) to casters (who depend on spells) ... 

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Casters don't really use weapons and it doesn't really make much sense for a weapon to affect spells, unless it's a magically enchanted weapon specifically for that purpose.

 

Why would having a bog standard knife make your spells any different?

nowt

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@daven Can we talk about good game design rather than realism? It's a matter of character progression. We can discuss the "logic" of magic here until a mod locks the thread or a doomsday prediction turns out to actually be true. It's really exciting to get a better weapon for a fighter. It isn't for a caster because the weapon only gets to be better for when you're not casting because it's an easy fight and you don't want to micro, or you want to save spells. When it comes to fighting the Dark Lord whatever you have equipped might as well be your empty hands.

 

@Valci That's an interesting perspective, but I don't think you couldn't balance this. You could design an encounter to be a reasonable challenge if everyone has a superb weapon, even if the superb weapon helps the fighter more than the wizard.

Out With The Good: The mod for tidying up your Deadfire combat tooltip.
Waukeen's Berth: Make all your basic purchases at Queen's Berth.
Nemnok's Congregation: Lets all priests express their true faith.

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oh an encounter can absolutely be tailored with that in mind... but a whole game? It's certainly not impossible... but is it worth it? How do you compensate the non-caster classes ? and so forth... the way its done is very simple and clear cut to me. Casters have spells and attacking is an afterthought while non-casters need to attack to do damage... each gets what it needs. It's possible ofc to have unique items for each... like a caster would get a weapon that increases AoE or DoT duration or whatnot... but these effects are already in the game. Most just arent on weapons. I remember BG having class specific items which was nice for flavor but it was intended like that from the get go. Aren't playing a Paladin and dont have Keldorn in your party? tough luck, you cant use the best weapon in the game (Carsomyr)... Do i want that for Pillars? Not so much...

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Do i want that for Pillars? Not so much...

That's not what I'm advocating. But if a fine weapon gives +4 accuracy and some damage over a normal one, then having a fine weapon equipped could give a caster +4 accuracy on their spells too. Voila, something as simple as a fine weapon is now useful to everyone without needing to actually hit with it.

Out With The Good: The mod for tidying up your Deadfire combat tooltip.
Waukeen's Berth: Make all your basic purchases at Queen's Berth.
Nemnok's Congregation: Lets all priests express their true faith.

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oh i see what you mean... i guess thats something that can be considered so long as spells dont inherently get (+accuracy) ... i want a level playing field across the board. In this example each class (either caster or not) should have the same sources of accuracy available for them in an offensive sense...

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Aren’t grimoires be more this time around than just spell containers? I feel unsure about buffing spells through items. Raising accuracy of your spells is a huge deal. Same with damage or duration.

 

I certainly didn’t feel that getting weapons for a mage were unexciting. The soul bound wand which had a chance to mindcontrol was a treat (though a bit too good to not equip IMO). In my mind attack/ability are two different things. You CAN focus on weapons with mage if you want to. Making items more interesting for a mage is a good idea but I would rather see it done through grimoires and trinkets, with weapons having an effect when you, well, use the weapon.

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Raising accuracy of your spells is a huge deal. Same with damage or duration.

Raising accuracy or damage of your attacks is also a huge deal. I'd just like the weapon to actually matter. Let a wizard with a broken stick for a weapon suck a bit at casting, just like a fighter with a rusty sword would against a dragon. I'm not advocating a game design where wizards are balanced around having no bonuses from their weapons and become overpowered if they have them.

 

I'm not sure I'm informed enough to address the grimoire argument. Would I have to choose between a grimoire that buffs me and a grimoire that has good spells in it, or can I put the good spells in a grimoire that also buffs me? The latter would work.

 

The soul bound wand which had a chance to mindcontrol was a treat

I'm not a fan of that item (and it's a scepter :p), but let's say I am, then we have a good "caster weapon" even though it's only good when attacking, but it's only really a caster weapon on the basis that it can't bind to non-casters.

Out With The Good: The mod for tidying up your Deadfire combat tooltip.
Waukeen's Berth: Make all your basic purchases at Queen's Berth.
Nemnok's Congregation: Lets all priests express their true faith.

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I'm sure someone can correct me if i'm wrong but as far as ive seen a mage or druid or priest has far more active abilities (in the form of spells) then the fighter, ranger or rogue... A class based system will inherently have classes that are more gear dependent then others. A warrior's main source of damage is as you say immediately affected by his weapon... a mage's is not.

 

So sayeth the ancient game code we excavated forth from the earth, or so sayeth the game code that didn't exist until some humans got together and designed it thusly?

 

omgFIREBALLS's general point is that there's plenty of room for a greater equipment-effectiveness spectrum for the casting role, which is true. Just because Fighters and the like get relatively greater martial benefits from weapons and such doesn't mean that it's somehow illegal or wrong to allow for interesting benefits for casty folk as well. That's one of the still-quite-rigid things about DnD-esque magic. You start out with "you can fling a couple of fireworks at people, but for the rest of combat, you're just going to flail around nigh-ineffectively with a weapon." And they justify this with "well, when you get higher level, you'll be able to just recreate reality with your willpower and summon a planet from elsewhere in the solar system to crash down upon your foes, so it's okay." Obviously it's less extreme of an incline in Pillars, especially Deadfire, what with booting Vancian magic to the curb and going with per-encounter stuff. But, why shouldn't a caster get the option to go much more passive with their build? Why should their strength so rigidly rely upon all their active abilities? We've got multi-classing now, and we're all about some options for character builds. So why not a caster spectrum for weapons? Doesn't even have to be caster-specific. Just a subset of equipment that allows you to finely tune things other than martial prowess. Even for a Fighter, it could be an option to focus more on your abilities and such than on pure weapon to-hit chance and damage, etc.

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Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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Yes, if you look at Sawyer's recent talk, he is trying to get away from the wizards in dresses using staves and daggers trope, and is somewhat frustrated by player-inertia.

Sawyer is a bit of an RPG elitist. He doesn't want to play the normal, typical RPG and if you do, he is frustrated by you and doesn't understand you. "Player inertia" in this context is literally just "people don't want to play that, they want to play this".

 

It helps to make him a really good game designer, as long as he's bound by editors and rules to prevent himself from going to far.

Edited by Katarack21
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Personally I think it's nice having some classes that aren't too item dependent.  You can make a party of monks, mages, priests, and druids, then finish the game with only white items.  Try doing that with fighters, rogues, barbarians, rangers, etc...  possible, probably, but not nearly so easy.  If you mix them up, you don't have to worry about getting the best magical weapons ASAP as you play through the game for every character, just a few.

 

Besides weapons, casters have basically the strongest progression in the game anyways.

Edited by Climhazzard
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Well, personally, I think item-dependency shouldn't be tethered to class (quite to such an extent), when it could simply be a separate spectrum within character customization.

 

Also, "but they get really strong in an incredibly specific manner" isn't really a justifiable argument for "so therefore it's okay that they're so role-restricted." Just because I want to wield arcane magic doesn't mean I want all my combat to go "cast spell --> kill 17 things in one explosion --> DONE!". Maybe I want to have a more interesting struggle with the foe, just using cool magical means than basic physical smashy means. Look at the "hybrid" classes, like Cipher. You fight with basics, build up a resource, then you get to unleash things at different levels of that resource. But for some reason, if you're super magical, you just turn into a giant cannon, and that's okay because you're such a powerful cannon. Would it be okay for Fighters to get 0 abilities, as long as they were super good at weapons-ing people?

Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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I'm sure someone can correct me if i'm wrong but as far as ive seen a mage or druid or priest has far more active abilities (in the form of spells) then the fighter, ranger or rogue... A class based system will inherently have classes that are more gear dependent then others. A warrior's main source of damage is as you say immediately affected by his weapon... a mage's is not.

 

So sayeth the ancient game code we excavated forth from the earth, or so sayeth the game code that didn't exist until some humans got together and designed it thusly?

 

omgFIREBALLS's general point is that there's plenty of room for a greater equipment-effectiveness spectrum for the casting role, which is true. Just because Fighters and the like get relatively greater martial benefits from weapons and such doesn't mean that it's somehow illegal or wrong to allow for interesting benefits for casty folk as well. That's one of the still-quite-rigid things about DnD-esque magic. You start out with "you can fling a couple of fireworks at people, but for the rest of combat, you're just going to flail around nigh-ineffectively with a weapon." And they justify this with "well, when you get higher level, you'll be able to just recreate reality with your willpower and summon a planet from elsewhere in the solar system to crash down upon your foes, so it's okay." Obviously it's less extreme of an incline in Pillars, especially Deadfire, what with booting Vancian magic to the curb and going with per-encounter stuff. But, why shouldn't a caster get the option to go much more passive with their build? Why should their strength so rigidly rely upon all their active abilities? We've got multi-classing now, and we're all about some options for character builds. So why not a caster spectrum for weapons? Doesn't even have to be caster-specific. Just a subset of equipment that allows you to finely tune things other than martial prowess. Even for a Fighter, it could be an option to focus more on your abilities and such than on pure weapon to-hit chance and damage, etc.

 

 

which is perfectly fine if you design a game that way. Then my fighter or monk or rogue or ranger (etc) should have as many active (spell-like) abilities as a mage has spells so that i can focus on that with those classes rather then martial prowess. But then we might as well go classless and just have a big tree of talents and/or abilities to pick from and build our character however we chose...  Some people like that... Personally i like the class system with roles that are more or less clearly defined. In this instance though what im saying is that it's not fair for one class to have the option to go any which way while the other does not... either you allow all classes the same flexibility and options (like the aforementioned equal number of activated abilities/spells) or you have more strictly defined roles... Im not a fan of the "i want to have my cake and eat it too" mindset personally so theres that...lol

Edited by Valci
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Raising accuracy of your spells is a huge deal. Same with damage or duration.

 

Raising accuracy or damage of your attacks is also a huge deal. I'd just like the weapon to actually matter. Let a wizard with a broken stick for a weapon suck a bit at casting, just like a fighter with a rusty sword would against a dragon. I'm not advocating a game design where wizards are balanced around having no bonuses from their weapons and become overpowered if they have them.

 

I'm not sure I'm informed enough to address the grimoire argument. Would I have to choose between a grimoire that buffs me and a grimoire that has good spells in it, or can I put the good spells in a grimoire that also buffs me? The latter would work.

 

The soul bound wand which had a chance to mindcontrol was a treat

 

I'm not a fan of that item (and it's a scepter :p), but let's say I am, then we have a good "caster weapon" even though it's only good when attacking, but it's only really a caster weapon on the basis that it can't bind to non-casters.

Shouldn’t we compare how weapons influence fighter’s skills vs wizards spells and fighters use of weapons and wizards use of weapons? Though I do understand that your issue is that equipment doesn’t interact with spellcasting which for the most part is what wizard is doing.

 

I would say that increasing accuracy of a spell isnt the same as increasing accuracy of an attack as the former is much more potent. Hitting petrify can be a game changing move, while more accuracy on weapon will slightly increase your DPS.

 

I really don’t know that much about grimoires either, but I am pretty sure they mentioned they want to make them more unique.

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@Valci:

 

Not necessarily "as many as." It's not all-or-nothing. Just, in Pillars 1, Wizards COULD boost their Perception and Might, then run around trying to be effective with weapons, but they were pretty ineffective still. That, and most equipment actually directly inhibited their casting speeds, etc. So, there was basically a big neon sign for Wizards pointing to the "Stay far away and just do big magical things" build.

 

I see a lot of room between that and "everyone is exactly the same and Wizards are no longer different from Fighters."

Edited by Lephys
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Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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