Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

No MP mage

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • No MP mage

    For my Shadowrun game, I had (**stole from the game) the idea of removing the limited ressource called MP or Mana for the mage. I'm planning of changing the MP cost for a Cooldown on spells (1-2 turns for Novice, 2-3 for Journeyman, 3-4 for Master) with the option to reduce this Cooldown with Talents or positioning the character on a Magic Ley-line. So a Mage with the Fire arcana would be able to cast Flame Blast for free (the TN stays the same), but would have to wait 1 turn before being able to do it again. I think this would make mages more on par with the two-handed warriors or damage-heavy rogues who can deal massive (non-penetrating, I admit) damage turn after turn. The challenge for the Mages now would no longer be ''How much MP should I invest on this ennemy without risking to be out of MP when the BBEG shows up'' but ''When should I unleash my more powerful spells without risking getting caught with only Arcane blast for 3 rounds when the BBEG shos up''. This would also remove the painful necessity of resting for X hours in a dungeon 'cause the mage is out of MP. I'd like your opinion on this.

    The mage will have the option to reset the Cooldwon to 0 by taking Strain damage. The Strain will be something like 4 or 5 x Number of turns remaining in HP.
    Last edited by vincegetorix; 15th December 2015, 04:26 PM.

  • #2
    Re: No MP mage

    Interesting idea, but I think there are some issues with getting the result you want.

    I don't think the "saving up spells" part will be an issue for the mage at all:
    "When should I unleash my more powerful spells without risking getting caught with only Arcane blast for 3 rounds when the BBEG shos up"

    During combat it would work fine, but as soon as you leave combat, you run into a time problem.
    If you have a spell with a 4 turn cooldown, during combat that's 4 full rounds before you can use it - which could be fine and give you the result you want - but if you even get a 1 minute rest in between encounters all your spells would be back up for use.

    So unless a BBEG has some pre-encounter with 'minions' or something else the mage can 'waste' his spells on which is tied directly (without rest) to the boss encounter, the cooldowns won't really affect the fight.

    I'm not sure how you would solve this - you could say cooldowns don't 'reset' out of combat unless you take take an hour rest (similar to meditating for MP), but then you might end up having the same problem. By changing this to a breather the problem would remain, the party would simply take a breather in between encounters and as a mage you're good to go.
    Also this system would require mages to keep track of each separate cooldown for their spells and if this doesn't 'reset' out of combat then you would have to keep track of it in between encounters aswel - which might not sound too appealing to mage players.

    Maybe you don't mind that the mage gets all their spells back after 1 minute - in that case this is no problem.


    In addition, there are a lot of things in the game which are tied directly to MP, such as the casting strain in armor and some spells scale in effect when you use more MP, that would all have to be reworked to use this. Which might be difficult, afterall if you can increase a spell's power by simply adding say 1-2MP it would be silly if it adds full rounds of cooldown to it.

    Another thing to keep in mind is that this will affect the value of willpower. If you don't need MP anymore, you would only need willpower to increase your spellpower - but there are also a lot of spells, albeit defensive/utility spells, which don't require a spellpower based test.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: No MP mage

      In addition to the nice points already mentioned above, I'd just like to point out that, in this kind of system, a party with a Healing-Arcana Mage will potentially enter every combat at full Health (the Mage will Healing Touch the hell out of them during breathers, even at 1st level).

      You may need to really figure out how to challenge a party like this in your adventures, because the only way to even dent their resources would be to throw 'em massive damage (via a big foe or a nasty hazard), or keep waves of smaller enemies coming in quick succession, both of which are way easy for the GM to get overly trigger-happy with.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: No MP mage

        I wouldn't do cool downs. I would make it a WIL roll to resist damage. You could also add modifiers - +1d6 damage for a -2 to Drain roll, or becomes Piercing for a -3 to Drain, or +3 Spellpower for a -2 Drain, etc.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: No MP mage

          I really like this idea and was considering making a sorcerer archetype for mages that use something similar. If cooldowns are not an option, how about recharge rolls? How it would work is that each spell is given a recharge number (typically 4+). At the end of the player's turn, he or she can roll 1d6 to recharge one spell. If the value is equal to or greater than the value, then the spell is recharged and can be used again in the next round. More powerful spells should have a higher recharge number.

          The mechanic is used a lot for monsters in D&D 4E and in the Mass Effect d20 I made a while back. Both seemed balanced, but I have not had the opportunity to try this out in AGE.
          Star Wars: AGE of the Empire: An ever-expanding adaption of the Star Wars universe utilizing the AGE ruleset and compatible with the Fantasy Age Basic Rulebook.

          Expanded Classes Playtest: Adding the Bard, Swashbuckler, and Templar classes. As well as introducing archetypes that gives players different options from the start of play.

          Dustin & Dragons.com: A very uncreative name for my blog on my RPG-related creative projects.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: No MP mage

            You guys make good points.

            On the fact that even a 1 minute rest would reset the spells to 0, I think it only demands that the GM make it so that there is always more than 1 minute between encounters; in a inflitration with many skirmishes before the BBEG, stealth-heavy (even if it always end in a gun-blazing showdown) setting like Shadowrun, if you get different encounters every minutes, your doing it wrong. The thing I really want to avoid in further games is the necessity to stop the entire party in the middle of the dungeon to meditate 'cause, if not, the mage will be useless in the next fight. If there's only one massive showdown in a game, MP is ok, but with many little fight if the players get caught, MP can run out before they even get to the big fight and in an infiltration, you cant rest in a building with blaring alarms and security looking for you!

            I think the fact that some spells demands further MP investment after the initial cost maybe replaced with a Sustaining Round. For exemple, cast X spells for massive effect, then on every other rounds, you can take your Full round to sustain the spell for lesser effect. Those spells arent the most common in FAGE, tho, so I guess I'll have to wait and see.

            For the Strain penalty cost, I'll have the strain cost added to the cooldown. It may seems harsh, but there's the fact that Armor is rare in this setting (nobody's gonna use Full plates in this world), so players will mostly use light armor or riot gears if they have the cash and really want to go heavy armored. Survival is more based on the players wits and the ability to take cover to augment Defense, not Armor. So mages will still be better off without armor, or amored and relying more on the Cooldown reduction talents/Stunts.

            The Healing is the major problem I see.
            Option 1) No Magic healing out-of-combat. The mage can use is magic to numb the pain for a time in battle, but out of combat, you really need medical care to remove the bullets that causes damage.

            Option 2) The Healing touch works like this: Cooldown 1 for every 1d6 healed. So to heal 3d6 on a player, the Mage would have to wait 3 Rounds before casting it again, even out of battle. So if, for exemple, you say that a Round out of battle is more or less 1 minute, this means 3 minutes for a 3d6 heal. So in a face paced game, choices will still have to be made on who to heal.

            It may also be noted that in this game, damage is really heavy, if you get hit. Defense is low and Armor are rare, so you need to take cover to reduce the probability of getting hit. IF you get a shotgun blast to the chest, you're HURT. So even with more reliable healing, the party with be in bad shape after a showdown with an enemy wave. So its not necessarily a bad thing that healing is better.

            Willpower will be less useful for mages, but I play with a Sanity system, Fear checks etc, so everybody will need Willpower to survive.

            Keep the comments comming, its really appreciated.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: No MP mage

              Originally posted by Otog View Post
              I really like this idea and was considering making a sorcerer archetype for mages that use something similar. If cooldowns are not an option, how about recharge rolls? How it would work is that each spell is given a recharge number (typically 4+). At the end of the player's turn, he or she can roll 1d6 to recharge one spell. If the value is equal to or greater than the value, then the spell is recharged and can be used again in the next round. More powerful spells should have a higher recharge number.

              The mechanic is used a lot for monsters in D&D 4E and in the Mass Effect d20 I made a while back. Both seemed balanced, but I have not had the opportunity to try this out in AGE.
              Yeah, I loved the recharge roll of 4ed, but with monster. I dont know how players would feel about this. I think I'll use your recharge idea for the major powers for some of my ennemies (Dragon breath or Tank canon, for exemple) just so major abilities dont become at-wills.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: No MP mage

                Originally posted by vincegetorix View Post
                On the fact that even a 1 minute rest would reset the spells to 0, I think it only demands that the GM make it so that there is always more than 1 minute between encounters;
                It's the other way around, it would happen if there is a time period of 1 minute or longer in between encounters. a combat round is 15 seconds (see action time P.32 rulebook). So 4 rounds = 1 minute - which means a spell with a cooldown of 4 rounds takes 1 minute to recharge. So if you always have more than 1 minute between encounters, the mage will ALWAYS have all their spells back up.


                Originally posted by vincegetorix View Post
                The Healing is the major problem I see.
                Option 1) No Magic healing out-of-combat. The mage can use is magic to numb the pain for a time in battle, but out of combat, you really need medical care to remove the bullets that causes damage.

                Option 2) The Healing touch works like this: Cooldown 1 for every 1d6 healed. So to heal 3d6 on a player, the Mage would have to wait 3 Rounds before casting it again, even out of battle. So if, for exemple, you say that a Round out of battle is more or less 1 minute, this means 3 minutes for a 3d6 heal. So in a face paced game, choices will still have to be made on who to heal.
                Option 1 would turn heal spells into an improved heal action - that would be kind of sad for the mage. Option 2 seems a bit of a drag to do.
                Maybe just make it a really simple rule and instead of not allowing it at all, limit it to "each player can be the target of a healing spell once in between encounters - unless you take a long rest etc.."


                To be honest, the more I think about things to solve this - if you really want to ignore MP that is - the more I think about just using a system like D&D where you can use spells X amount of times, which recharge when you take a long rest. Then you could make it so in between encounters you might get a spellcharge back but not all charges. It's pretty much the same as a cooldown but you look at it from the other side.


                That said, if the main reason you want to change this is because you don't want a mage to meditate, slowing down the party for an hour, due to lack of MP, perhaps there are some easier solutions. You could houserule it to allow a mage to gain some MP back during a breather. Or maybe give out items that allow him to restore some MP or perhaps the party can reach some 'recharge point' which restores a bit of MP (and perhaps even HP for the others aswel). All those seems a lot simpler than trying to figure out a whole new system.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: No MP mage

                  I think, in the end, its a matter of wether you find the fact that Mages have access to their full spell arsenal each combat is too strong or not. In the case of our game, Mages seem underpowered, given the relatively low power output of spells in term of damage and crowd crontrol. I give you that if you start using the Spells from D.A with 3d6+1d6+mag over time, sleep, paralyse, petrify etc, it changes the possibility of using Cooldowns. But with the the damage of FAGE's arcanas (2d6, 3d6) and CC on most of them (Knock down, -2 penalties etc) it doest seem overpowered to have mages cast spells for free, not just turn after turn. I see the mage's spell as their Weapon: Warrior and Rogue can use their weapon for free, every turn, without having to spend ressources. I see the role of the Mages in FAGE, not like massive damages and CC but more like Heavy Penetrating damage Spikes mix with soft-control each 2 or 3 rounds. I dont think having a mage casting a fireball every 3 or 4 rounds, every combat is too much. I mean, by the time the Mage cast a second 3d6+Mag Firestorm on the ennemies, the (two-handed) warrior will have attacked the target 3x 3d6+Str (without stunts).

                  I get that in games where mages can attain ridiculous powers like in DnD or even DAGE, you would have to put some kind of restriction; FAGE's just not one of them.
                  I'll just rule that the Cooldowns reset to 0 when the Action Time encounter is over, and that a out-of-combat Narative Round represent 1 minutes, not 15 sec so that spells would not be chain-castable out of combat.

                  Anyway, I'll start with this and give some feedback later. Vegasmobile, who plays my game, will comment seeing he's a long time mage player.
                  Last edited by vincegetorix; 16th December 2015, 11:27 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: No MP mage

                    I'm curious to hear how it will play out - since it will pretty much be an entirely new spell system that way.

                    That said, this makes me wonder, I see this a lot with changes and ideas on this forum.
                    Everyone seems so eager to throw part of the existing FAGE system out of the window and 're-invent the wheel' when in most cases the same result can be reached by 'simply' tweaking the current system, why is that?

                    In other words - Instead of changing the spellcasting system by throwing out MP and adding in cooldowns and added ruling, if MP and the strength of spells are the issue, why not tweak what's already there?
                    I mean, wouldn't increasing MP regeneration and adding strength to spells by adding damage or more control give you the same result?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: No MP mage

                      I think the simplicity of FAGE is its biggest selling argument and its biggest flaw: its does seem like a template system more than a complete system for an entire campaign. I dont think that many Gms play the game without any modifications or add-on. That's why people are quick to modify the base system, even more with the fact that the system is quite easy to modify without to much changes. Changing MP for Cooldowns is not that much of a change in terms of modifications. I still use the Minor/Major action, TN, Casting rolls + focus, Spellpower etc. It only requires removing the MP section of the spell list for a Cooldown section instead, even more easy if I go with standardized Cooldowns ( 1 turn for Novice arcanas, 2 turns for Journeyman, 3 for Master). Its not like I removed the concept of Arcanas, or even the entire casting system like Eternal Shadow.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: No MP mage

                        I want to know how it goes. I really hate Mp-based magic in most of its incarnations, and it makes no sense in my homebrew setting. In the end what I decided to do for a no-mp variant was to convert the MP cost into fatigue damage from the Esoterica, that is only healed by resting. It works for this setting, but I'm interested in possible alternatives.

                        Your cooldown seems very cinematic and reminds me of DAI and ME. In my setting healing magic doesn't close wounds (healing magic helps by making your natural healing faster and more efficient, but causes a lot of pain and shock and should never be used on someone that isn't stabilized or it may kill them on the spot), so the setting problem of people always being at their full with no wounds after some minutes wouldn't be an issue.

                        That said I don't think that player characters being fully healed if given some minutes is actually a mechanical problem. Sure, a dungeon crawl and grind isn't the same when you can rest and heal, but at least in my experience that kind of adventure was never fun to either play or DM (my actual problem with "typical" D&D), and besides fage doesn't seem at all build for that. The only "balance" we should care is that all player options are usefull, not what is the perfect CR, ECL, WBL and expected resource drain per fight... I wouldn't use an option that allows for full healing at will for setting reasons (I like gritty), but there's nothing wrong with it mechanically, so if it works for your setting I would say go for it.

                        Only thing that i feel i should point out is that if in the end you allow something to be done with magic that allows players to be healed to the top more or less at will, then make it not dependent on magic. If your out of combat cooldown is 1 minute, and in practice the mage can top everyone given half an hour (or an hour, or any other arbitrary ammount of time) by just using the mechanics as presented, then save everyone the headache and just say that a rest of X ammount of time tops them.

                        Oh and also I wouldn't use something as "healing only works on combat" since I think that rules should at least make some sense in character. Maybe "can only be used to heal damage taken in the last minute" or any other arbitraty number, but that would add a layer of complexity that I wouldn't want to use. Maybe give healing spells the same restriction as the Heal action, or only once during a breather.
                        DiBastet's Homebrew - My own homebrew. Use them, mine them for ideas, change them, as you see fit.
                        AGE of Darkness - Converting World of Darkness to Fantasy Age.
                        AGE of Wacraft - Playing AGE in Azeroth.

                        Age of Homebrew - Links to other homebrew. Feel free to add more.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: No MP mage

                          Thanks a lot, you just reminded me of something important in the Shadowrun games: magic healing was only able to recover Health lost from the previous round. So only the Biotech Talent (Chirurgy) would be able to recover some health after the combat.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: No MP mage

                            Originally posted by vincegetorix View Post
                            I think the simplicity of FAGE is its biggest selling argument and its biggest flaw: its does seem like a template system more than a complete system for an entire campaign. I dont think that many Gms play the game without any modifications or add-on. That's why people are quick to modify the base system, even more with the fact that the system is quite easy to modify without to much changes. Changing MP for Cooldowns is not that much of a change in terms of modifications. I still use the Minor/Major action, TN, Casting rolls + focus, Spellpower etc. It only requires removing the MP section of the spell list for a Cooldown section instead, even more easy if I go with standardized Cooldowns ( 1 turn for Novice arcanas, 2 turns for Journeyman, 3 for Master). Its not like I removed the concept of Arcanas, or even the entire casting system like Eternal Shadow.
                            I agree that the simplicity of FAGE is both it's best selling point and that it has it's flaws as you say it's more like a template, which you can modify and add-on to. I guess I just have a more 'preserved' look on modifying things. I come from D&D 3.5, considering that all add-ons for that system, also made it a lot more complicated, I sort of want to stay as far away from that as possible. Therefor I'd rather tweak numbers of something that people, who read the core rulebook, know than change it to something new with it's own rules.

                            But enough about that.

                            Originally posted by DiBastet View Post
                            Maybe "can only be used to heal damage taken in the last minute"
                            Originally posted by vincegetorix View Post
                            Thanks a lot, you just reminded me of something important in the Shadowrun games: magic healing was only able to recover Health lost from the previous round. So only the Biotech Talent (Chirurgy) would be able to recover some health after the combat.
                            I like those ideas. Running with that, perhaps you could set something like a HP treshold?
                            Something like "Out of combat - Without a full rest you can 'only' be healed to 75% of your maximum health", So you can still heal out of combat but it only has a limited effectiveness, to really recover from those wounds you would really need some rest.
                            Last edited by Gerben; 17th December 2015, 01:42 AM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: No MP mage

                              I like this one. For thematic reasons, and also for having a background in 3.5 I would use 50% (oh dragon shaman and the groundbreaking fast healing aura...). I like my addons as simple as possible, so "magic can only heal you up to 50% period" in or out of combat seems better than "damage taken in the last x". With a static value, that's everything the player -and more importantly I- have to know, a floating number might be ok for some but really not for me. it strike me as a good compromise for those who don't believe in the 'top after combat' cinematic view.
                              DiBastet's Homebrew - My own homebrew. Use them, mine them for ideas, change them, as you see fit.
                              AGE of Darkness - Converting World of Darkness to Fantasy Age.
                              AGE of Wacraft - Playing AGE in Azeroth.

                              Age of Homebrew - Links to other homebrew. Feel free to add more.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X