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Author Topic: Class Discussion 03 - after talking to Dentin  (Read 5920 times)
Draak
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« on: September 22, 2009, 05:04:49 am »

I had a talk with Dentin and he managed to sell me on a "druid" class as a sort of nature mage or natural magician rather than a quasi-divine agent. I ask for only a couple of concessions:  

1) change the name to Witch, Warlock or Sorceror. This would remove a lot of the baggage the word Druid carries with it (though it would inherit some of its own). It would also leave already existing druids in the game in their existing role as divine agents, though they would probably be multiclass cleric/shamans.

2) Do not implement any kind of alignment requirements for their spells. Alignment should be the cleric's domain and should not hamper someone that doesn't rely on a deity's favor to cast their spells.

More to follow.

EDIT according to the post from December 14th 2009.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2009, 04:32:00 am by Draak » Logged

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Draak
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« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2009, 05:22:33 am »

I have revised my system of understanding magic:

I) Magic exists    
    A) Magic is energy
    B) Magic is not constant -- it exists in differing concentrations from place to place and flows from place to place.
    C) Magic exists in several different forms -- planar energy and life force/life energy being the major ones

II) Magic can be harnessed
    A) Magic can be shaped into virtually any other form of energy with minimal losses.
       i) Magic used to manipulate physical matter (such freezing ambient water to make ice bolts) does not necessarily make such matter magical.
       ii) "Conjured" matter, ie created seemingly ex nihlo via magic (like the flaming gasses from fireballs or  electron streams of lightning bolt), is magical by nature and can be blocked by effects that affect  magic. The conjured material quickly dissipates.
    B) Magic naturally accumulates in creatures as mana. Creatures with keen intellect and deep insight can tap into their reserves of mana more effeciently and actively gather mana more quickly. Items can also be created that serve as reservoirs of mana.
       i) all spellcasters use their internal reserve of mana as catalyst for spells, but they tap into different sources to produce an effect.
    C) Some entities, definitely gods and possibly demon lords, fae princes, powerful angelic beings, etc, either produce magic intrinsically or can tap into it more effeciently than mortals. Such entities have virtually unlimited ability to use magic. Some creatures are made of magic or held together by magic.

III) Magic is harnessed into spells  
   A) There currently seems to be two ways of doing so:
        i) Direct shaping of stored mana through arcane formulae and personal will in order to manifest an effect. This seems to be method for manipulating planar energies as done by:
          a) MAGES, who use their mana to conjure and shape extra-planar energy.
          b) new WITCH/WARLOCK/SORCEROR class, who use their mana to manipulate "natural" energy, or the mana fields of the material plane itself.
        ii) Channeling spells, i.e. an extrahuman entity is given mana by the caster via a ritual, shapes it either partially or completely into the required energy, then releases it back to the caster for them to direct as they see fit. Mortal agencies do not seem to be adept at wielding life energy, and thus they must serve, entice or manipulate other entities to so for them.
          a)CLERICS, with the extra-human entity being a more powerful deity for whom they act as an agent or representative. This also why clerics can groupcast -- they can sacrifice mana by proxy via ritual
          b) new SHAMANS (i.e. necromancer), who use their mana to serve as a patron to other lesser entities that nonetheless have superhuman abilities. They would also bargain with greater or equal entities for more limited services, such as demonstrated by the Durham's guiding spirit spell.

EDIT according to the post from December 14th 2009.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2009, 04:33:01 am by Draak » Logged

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Draak
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« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2009, 05:57:26 am »

REVISED CLASS BREAKDOWN:

MAGE
Becomes more focused on elemental magic -- magical "physicist" as opposed to warlock "biologist". Keeps elemental spells (electricity,fire,ice,crystal), color spray, noxious cloud, brew potion tree, detect magic/dispel tree, fly, summon/teleport, invisibility tree, Tensor's floating disc, ventriloquate, dancing lights, displace, shield, knock and other non-biological utility spells. Mages learn how to manipulate mana/magic and use it to unravel and reshape the multiverse as they wish. Works best as solo.

Loses
divination spell tree: gaze, find object, locate object, farsee
fear, possession
body alteration: infravision, blindness, strength, dexterity, water breathing, weakness, clumsiness, haste, lethargy, feeblemind
stone skin retooled into crystal tree?
maybe loses darken
candle

Gains
new elemental spells? summoning generic elementals? noxious cloud part of an acidic/toxin tree?
golem crafting -- requires binding of elemental creatures to animate bodies, should be mage and not warlock
Illusion tree:

Quote
Invisibility/mass invis, displacement, dancing lights, ventriloquate and color spray could become part of an illusion tree, perhaps also some of the illusionist ideas I posted to Dentin (largely as a thought exercise rather than a serious attempt to create a new class) like more prismatic, color sprayish-type spells. Maybe illusionary wall to 'block' exits, too?

Could have a skill called mock spell or mimic spell that allows you to cast an illusionary version of many other mage attack spells (provided you know the spell) that would throw against mental stats and cost less mana. Couldn't duplicate spells with physical components (like frostbite, noxious cloud or shards), just pure energy ones like fireball, cone of cold and lightning bolt.

Illusions in this case would be quasi-real constructs made from magical energy, conjured and shaped by the mage from extra-planar components rather than in the mind of the target(s).

CLERIC
A functionary of a deity, who must keep in that deity's good graces to be effective. Keeps refresh/protection tree, heal/harm trees, detect/turn undead, groupcasting, ward spells, presence, word of recall/group recall, flamestrike, cure poison tree, cure blindness, remove curse (cleric version of dispel magic), detect align tree, spirit hammer, etc, etc. Clerics stand as representatives/intermediaries of the gods. Works best in groups.

Loses
charm, squeaky floors, Durhams guiding spirit, famine, confusion, mass confusion, animate dead, sense life, preservation, entangling roots, create food/water, blizzard, ice fog, earthquake, faerie fire/fog

Gains
more aligned abilities? - consecrate/desecrate weapon, claws of darkness, etc.
candle -- replaces continual light
demonfire/balefire?
treat disease tree? - brewable?

THIEF
Takes on some of my proposed bard skills to add to Dentin's "spoil the fight" creedo. Keeps stealth tree, thievery tree, backstab, dodge, trip, throw, throw potion, poison tree, bribe and pretty much everything thieves do. Thieves are sneaky guys that use their stealth either to "liberate" items from their owners, or to hunt down and slay enemies, often a mixture of both. Works best as solo.

Loses
forage

Gains
"bardic" skills -- luck, gamble (restrung as gambit), bluff, maybe risk and chance, too
luck tree mechanics repost:
Quote
luck -- 1st level skill, passive -- The bard has a percentage based chance (something like (bard level/5)%, minimum 0.25%?, cap at 4-5%?) of having  1d(charisma score - 10) added to its hitroll, damroll, dodge, parry or castability any time a revelant check is made. Abilities that lower the bard's charisma below 10 could result in this roll being a negative amount, so it could be turned against the character in very rare circumstances. The luck formula could be used to calculate the bonuses bestowed by some of the bard's song abilities...

gamble - 1st level active combat skill, this ability consumes movement (1d20+20?) each time it is activated. Basically, the bard tries a risky manuever in combat, adding +40 or 50 to his AC (which is bad in this game) while adding an amount equal to (bard level/2 + (charisma score -10)) to either his hitroll, damroll or attacks (chosen at random) for a number of rounds equal to some sort of level or charisma based equation. Basically, it's a sort of mini-berserk. There could be multipliers to the bonus for higher level bards (x2 at 21, x3 at 32 maybe?)

bluff - active combat skill, functionally, an aggro control for the group-oriented bard class. Bard does a charisma/level check against single target -- target might back down and lose its aggressiveness for a time if cowed. If the bard is significantly more powerful and wins the bluff by a large amount, the target may flee. Basically the bard is claiming that he knows the ancient art of Krapudu and will pluck out your eyes and show them to you before you die (or something similar through body language to opponents that can't understand him.)

chance - active combat skill, tries to force a luck event, costs small chunk of movement, failure results in bard falling into prone position as if bashed. Mechanics could be charisma/dex based.

risk - active combat skill, bard lures an opponent into a compromising stance by purposly taking a blow -- when the ability is activated (You prepare yourself to take a risk... sent to self only), you forfeit dodge/parry attempts against the next successful melee attack from an opponent, which does 50% more damage. The pay off is that you have a chance of stunning him or knocking him prone as if bashed and dealing damage equal to your luck bonus to damroll (this damage should receive multipliers at higher levels maybe).

WARRIOR
Solid, generic class can function as anything melee. Keeps kick, bash, leaping attack, double attack, berserk, rescue/tank tree, defensive fighting, retreat, taunt/intidimidate/roar tree, valor, unarmed combat, parry, disarm, etc,etc. These guys are characters of any sort that are found on the front lines, either as hitters or tanks. Works best in groups.

Loses
nothing

Gains
knight/paladin abilities?

WITCH/WARLOCK/SORCEROR
This class is a natural magician, harnessing magic inherient in the land itself for his ends. He is also a woodsy fellow with intimate knowledge of the wild that can communicate with animals. He is a magical 'naturalist' as opposed to the biologist shaman and physicist mage. Sorcerors are the medicine men, hermits and wise men of the woods. Works best as solo.

Gains:
from cleric:
entangling roots, create food/water, blizzard, ice fog, earthquake, faerie fire/fog, control weather, sunlight/sunstorm

from thief:
forage

New:
calm animals, lure animal, befriend animal -- doesn't summon, but can entice animals into service
hailstone
other druid spells
some sort of dispel?

spells for first level: Huh?

SHAMAN
A magical "biologist" as opposed to the magical "physicist" of the mage. They can be fortune tellers, spirit mediums, witch doctors, to full on creepy guys in graveyards with undead servants and demon familiars. They have buffing/healing abilities that they can only use on themselves, and usually have to steal energy from an opponent to work.  They function as patrons that enslave/entice lesser entities to serve, or bargain directly with equal or greater powers for limited actions (like Durham's). Works best as solo.

Gains
From mage:
divination spell tree: gaze, find object, locate object, farsee -- reflavored to be entreating spirits/demons to make searches
fear, possession
body alteration: infravision, blindness, strength, dexterity, water breathing, weakness, clumsiness, haste, lethargy, feeblemind -- possibly inviting spirits to possess bodies or make the changes?

From cleric:
charm, Durhams guiding spirit (part of divination tree), famine, confusion, mass confusion, animate dead, sense life, preservation, squeaky floors, continual light

sense life could be retooled to be scent -- caster gains enhanced sense of smell, so they can sniff out hidden life forms. Noxious cloud would have additional dehabiliting effects on a target with scent active, and choking cloud and poison cloud would prevent the ability from working in a given room (The strong odor would mask any scents).

New
leeching spells -- leech spell (necromancer dispel, lessens spell duration on target, caster regain hitpoints), leech life, maybe more
more curses
mummification (prepare a corpse using herbs, thus creating an undead mummy when animate dead is cast upon it)
similar skill/spell to above to make skeletons better -- stone bones, petrify bones?
disease tree?
ward undead? - maybe for cleric...
regeneration/enhancement part of body alteration?
minor conjured constructs like my soul serpent suggestion
new spells from Dentin? maybe some spells that require sacrifice of hp as well (cutting your palm open for blood offering, that sort of thing)?

Quote
leech spell - necromancer spell, when cast on a target, reduces the duration of target's active spells by some amount. Probably some sort of level check would be thrown against each spell individually. The necromancer gains hitpoints equal to <number of ticks reduced>/5.

soul serpent - creates an ethereal, serpent-like entity that assists the caster in combat. It does a low amount of damage (1dcaster's level, no damroll, hitroll equal to caster level, attacks equal to 20 + 1/2 caster level). The "serpent" lasts for a number of ticks equal to 10 + 1/2 the caster's level, or until it deals an amount of damage equal to the twice the caster's level + 20.

When the duration expires or the maximum damage is done, the serpent dissipates, and the caster regains a number of hitpoints equal to the amount of damage the serpent inflicted. If the soul serpent is dispelled, killed or otherwise destroyed, the caster gains no hitpoints.

spells for 1st level: soul serpent and continual light

EDIT according to the post from December 14th 2009.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2010, 08:11:45 am by Draak » Logged

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Draak
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« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2009, 04:26:10 am »

After doing some research, it would actually appear I have their roles reversed:

Shamans do business with spirits, so they would be the necromancer/warlock class.

Warlocks/witches (at least modern ones) deal with nature magic, they would actually be the shaman/druid class.

I'll retcon my old posts. Watch for falling EDIT signs.

« Last Edit: December 15, 2009, 07:22:56 am by Draak » Logged

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Dentin
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« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2009, 08:52:26 pm »

Ok, it's good to know I'm not at least completely out of my mind here.
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Draak
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« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2010, 07:33:17 am »

Here's one way of looking at my explantion of the new spellcasters in light of the old:

Mages and clerics both deal with extraplanar power. Mages tap into directly. Clerics are granted access by their patron deity or the pantheon as a whole.

Druid/witches and Shamans do the same, but with power native to the material plane. Druids tap into it directly. Shamans call upon various local powers to for aid.

Native Powers Extraplanar Powers
Direct    druid/witch   mage
Indirect   shaman/necromancer  cleric


flay spell for shamans for their necro tree -- skins and defleshes a corpse so you can turn it into a skeleton. Maybe a generic damage spell against animals, humanoids and others with skin, does charisma damage! ("OW! mY SkIn!!") Creatures killed by flay would automatically be skeletons

We have four broad classes, with lots of options. It would be nice to maintain the breadth and versatility of our existing classes and not add anything that's overspecialized beyond 'focus group' and 'focus solo'.
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Dentin
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« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2010, 07:26:32 pm »

This is a lot closer to what I had going on in my mind as well, though the spell tree for mage I think is going to be the hardest and longest to separate.  I really should make another pass through the infrastructure for class code.
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