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  • Changing Arcana Talents

    Hey all

    I really like the ideia of mages needing to study and doing research to learn new spells. Also I would like to add more spells to some arcana (as fire, for example).
    Here is my idea:

    1) Arcanas no more give you new spells, instead it allows you to learn spells from a certain level (basic, intermediate and advanced)of the specific arcana. Wich would allow me to add as many spells as i want.
    2) To learn new spells you either need to find a tome containing that spell OR look for someone who can teach you the new spell
    3) Learning a spells requires an advanced Intelligence (Arcana) test (TN 12 for basic, TN 14 for Intermediate, TN 16 for Advanced)where the threshold is the spell TN. You can do only one test per day.

    EDIT:
    4) On the first level you receive four free spells
    5) There is no limit to how many spells a mage can learn.

    Your opinions?
    Last edited by TheRedHobgoblin; 19th March 2016, 02:23 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Changing Arcana Talents

    That sounds like a good framework to role play the act of learning spells. The core rule book discusses something like this on page 49 under "Unlocking Specializations"

    I don't know if anyone has encountered in Fantasy AGE or Dragon AGE where it was overpowered that a mage had access to too many spells in combat. I know in D&D at the start of each in game day a character has to select a limited number of spells they can perform. You may want to consider an upper limit of spells per arcana and/or a total spells that a mage can perform in combat. If you have some really special or rare spells that the mage may not have "memorized" for day to day use consider a minor action similar to "Ready" where the mage must pull out his tome or grimoire in order to use that spell as the major action.

    Otherwise keep arcana and magic talents as vessel for you to role play the gaining of knowledge. Seems out of place for a mage to know a Master equivalent spell without the other three lower tier ones.
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    • #3
      Re: Changing Arcana Talents

      Originally posted by mdlthree View Post
      Otherwise keep arcana and magic talents as vessel for you to role play the gaining of knowledge. Seems out of place for a mage to know a Master equivalent spell without the other three lower tier ones.
      I dont know if thats clear but arcanas are kept as talents. So you need to have basic before intermediate before advanced.
      If you are worried about the player avoiding "weak spells" in favor of aiming at higher level spells, my thoughts are that you will need several levels to go from basic to advanced and staying with the same spells or no spells of lower levels simply doesnt worth the talents.
      Thats why i think that there will be no "speel level skipping"

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      • #4
        Re: Changing Arcana Talents

        Personally, I'd go back to the D-AGE system of spells and leave off Arcana entirely. I preferred the focus/talent method, where you could mix and match bonuses, spells, etc., and not be cookie-cutter.

        I don't see keeping the arcana requirement is completely necessary, it would depend on how you broke spells up.

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        • #5
          Re: Changing Arcana Talents

          I'm working on something similar. Here is how mine works, currently:
          • Arcanas remain as talents.
          • Each degree of Arcana has a list of spells under it. When the Arcana would normally grant you one or two specific spells, you get to choose from the list instead.
          • There is the Expanded Arcana talent that allows you to take one more spell from an Arcana degree that you already have access to. This talent can be taken multiple times, but only once per level advancement.
          • I have modified the MP cost of spells to act like Psionics in D&D3.5. Essentially, for each spellcasting, you can only spend a number of MP up to your character level.
          • Most spells are augmentable, in that you get greater effects with more MP spent. But because MP expenditure is capped by your current level, there becomes a natural balance of sorts between arcane power and character level. For example, the Earth Bending* spell is available with the Novice Earth Arcana talent. It can throw rocks for at least 1MP, trap opponents in an area for at least 7MP, and cause catastrophic earthquakes with at least 15MP. Essentially, three spells wrapped into one, but naturally unlocks itself at certain levels.
          • In-game, PCs can research/create spells that fall within the domain of Arcanas they already know. They can begin working on spells that are not within any of their Arcanas, but they can't complete the spell until they gain the Arcana.


          * This is just to illustrate. I don't really have a spell that acts exactly like this.

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          • #6
            Re: Changing Arcana Talents

            I need to playtest this rules I created but if they dont work I'm going back to DA model, it was more flexible and customizable.
            As stated before my main goal is to create this study characteristic to mages but I want to add more spells and I think that having a limited amount of learnable spells would make some minor spells like "create light" poor choices when you have something as "fire blast" as an option.

            PS: As always, if the text is confusing, let me know.
            Last edited by TheRedHobgoblin; 20th March 2016, 09:23 AM.

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            • #7
              Re: Changing Arcana Talents

              A limited amount of spells doesn't really provide a good limit - you can still only cast 1 spell/turn.

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              • #8
                Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                "create light"
                Then take a clue from SW and allow players to just cast minor effects without the need to learn a new spell. Just pay some mp and call it a day.

                For example, in the basic fage, if you have the Light arcana then you could use minor light effects at the cost of 1mp. These effects can help a party in some parts of the adventure, but for most combat-centric games they aren't "worth" the same price as a combat ability (in this case, a talent), so making them "free" solves it.
                Last edited by DiBastet; 20th March 2016, 01:28 PM.
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                • #9
                  Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                  Originally posted by DiBastet View Post
                  in the basic fage, if you have the Light arcana
                  Wait where is this?

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                  • #10
                    Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                    But if I let minor spells to be "free", I would be forgeting my main goal: Studying mages.
                    Certainly I could ask my player roleplay studied wizards, but having a mechanical way to represent it kinda enforces the concept

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                    • #11
                      Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                      Originally posted by TheRedHobgoblin View Post
                      But if I let minor spells to be "free", I would be forgeting my main goal: Studying mages.
                      Certainly I could ask my player roleplay studied wizards, but having a mechanical way to represent it kinda enforces the concept
                      Will this be a mage variant, or the only acceptable mage in the game?

                      Research-based Mages are essentially D&D Wizards, and inner-power-based Mages are essentially D&D Sorcerers. If you're running them both, you might want to check out their D&D mechanics (they already have the "learning" part down pat) and just hack them for FAGE. Still, if they're all Wizard-like, the D&D Wizard already has rules for learning from spellbooks, scrolls, runes, and whatnot. You might even go a bit darker and forcibly extract knowledge directly from the enemy wizard's mind.

                      While your idea will be tedious in practice (you'll have to prepare opportunities for learning), it is interesting, especially if applied equally to all classes and talents. The Warrior wants Dual-Weapon Style? Find a mentor and learn from him. The Rogue wants Oratory? Go enter the College of Bards. The Mage wants to learn a spell? Go research it.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                        Originally posted by TheGreyWulf View Post
                        Will this be a mage variant, or the only acceptable mage in the game?

                        Research-based Mages are essentially D&D Wizards, and inner-power-based Mages are essentially D&D Sorcerers. If you're running them both, you might want to check out their D&D mechanics (they already have the "learning" part down pat) and just hack them for FAGE. Still, if they're all Wizard-like, the D&D Wizard already has rules for learning from spellbooks, scrolls, runes, and whatnot. You might even go a bit darker and forcibly extract knowledge directly from the enemy wizard's mind.

                        While your idea will be tedious in practice (you'll have to prepare opportunities for learning), it is interesting, especially if applied equally to all classes and talents. The Warrior wants Dual-Weapon Style? Find a mentor and learn from him. The Rogue wants Oratory? Go enter the College of Bards. The Mage wants to learn a spell? Go research it.
                        I see your point.
                        I'm taking Dragon Age route then.

                        Thanks everybody for your opinions!

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                        • #13
                          Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                          Originally posted by TheRedHobgoblin View Post
                          I see your point.
                          I'm taking Dragon Age route then.
                          Hey, if the point you took was that it'd be tedious, don't be discouraged just yet.

                          I meant tedious to mean it's an added effort, but how much of an effort it'd be would still be up to you.

                          It could be as simple as the Mage stumbling upon a spellbook while clearing out a tower, and then just have a progressive test while in between adventures (essentially, an item drop). It could also be as complex as the Mage having to climb a specific tower to get a specific spellbook that is guarded by the Balrog, then having the spellbook translated from the very-ancient language that it is written in, and then have the progressive test (essentially, a side quest).

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                          • #14
                            Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                            ...basic, ... Intermediate, ... Advanced ...
                            Just a sidenote: Why reinvent the wheel? Why not stick to Novice, Journeyman, Master?

                            --------

                            I would still give 1 spell per talent level, but let the player choose it from the corresponding list.

                            Meaning:

                            1) there will be several Novice spells, several Journeyman spells, and several Master spells for every Arcana.
                            2) Each level of an Arcana talent gives general access to spells of the same level and also 1 automatic spell learned (chosen by the player) (maybe give 2 spells for Novice).
                            3) All other spells of the "unlocked" levels can be learned by finding formulas/teachers and time of study (+ a test, if you wish)

                            4a) You could think about dropping the other benefits of the Arcana talents, aka the free focus and the Stunt point bonus.
                            4b) Maybe introduce a "Specialty Arcana" talent for those instead (take a look in my Free-Form system for an idea of that)

                            And you are golden.
                            Last edited by DracoDruid; 21st March 2016, 02:07 AM.
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                            • #15
                              Re: Changing Arcana Talents

                              If you're going the D-AGE spell route, I'd just drop Arcana altogether, and use the Mage progression from D-AGE. Otherwise, there's no real point in keeping Arcana around.

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