Rule discussion - empowering the elemental spell sphere
#1
The elemental sphere of magic is considered to be under-powered by many players. I'm currently looking at ways to increase it's usefulness and these are some ideas I've come up with. Please note that nothing in this thread is "official", any proposals for change would be shown to each guild for feedback before changes were made.

The problem: The elemental sphere relies heavily on numeric damage to get the job done. As player bases grow and monster body points are raised to compensate for larger and larger battles, the usefulness of spells that do numeric damage lessens, especially when compared to "one shot kill" effects such as web and sleep. If a monster's body points are raised from 100 to 300 to offset larger groups of PCs, the elementalist becomes weaker whereas the nature caster does not.

The theme: Generally speaking, players chose the elemental sphere because they want to be in the thick of combat. Elemental casters want to be heroes, not support. They want to be "glass cannons" who can single-handedly drop the big monster with their overpowering elemental spells even if that means they are vulnerable to damage themselves. Right now, elemental players feel that they are the opposite to this theme - used to project some ranged numeric damage on a target before being forced to flee when the distance is closed.

Here are my proposals to change that and get elementalists back on track.

#1 - Reduce the incant size.

#2 - Make every spell in the elemental sphere applicable to each elemental attunement so that mages don't "skip" over memorizing spells because it doesn't suit their RP.

#3 - Change all numeric elemental damage spells to "elemental damage". Not only would this remove bleed counts as per elemental damage rules, it would prevent anti-magic defenses such as Shield Magic and Resist Magic from negating them.

#4 - Remove this line from the description on thresholds: "elemental is considered magic for the purposes of thresholds". This would make all elemenetal damaging spells bypass all thresholds.

#5 - Remove the Waterbreathing spell and replace it with a 10 minute duration packet-delivered attack which causes the target to become vulnerable to one elemental type. This would cause any damage by that elemental type to do x4 damage to the target for 10 minutes.

#6 - Remove both Elemental Blade spells and replace with summoned elemental weapon spells, similar to Psi-Knife and Blade.

I understand that doing all this would increase the numeric damage output of elementalists by a considerable amount, outclassing every other class when it comes to raw damage. With a x4 damage multiplier, some elemental spells will now do 120 damage to a target that cannot use thresholds or anti-magic defenses (minus elemental shield) against it. I would make the argument that the elemental caster SHOULD sit on the top of the rankings for pure damage, out-damaging warrior classes who have the benefit of heavy armour and additional body points. As it is now, when a call goes out for a mage to help kill a big monster in town, it's usually the druid with the binding magic who answers it and the elemental mage is left behind.

Feedback?
Edward Watt
Underworld LARP Canada - Co-Founder
Guild Jericho : General Manager
Email: comments@larp.ca
Reply
#2
#1 - Reduce the incant size.
Eh. Not so much a problem. I think keeping them the same is alright.

#2 - Make every spell in the elemental sphere applicable to each elemental attunement so that mages don't "skip" over memorizing spells because it doesn't suit their RP.
Bueno.

#3 - Change all numeric elemental damage spells to "elemental damage". Not only would this remove bleed counts as per elemental damage rules, it would prevent anti-magic defenses such as Shield Magic and Resist Magic from negating them.
This I both like and dislike equally. The output of Elemental damage becomes a problem when suddenly every Fire Elementalist can set the whole forest on fire due to their spells becoming 'real flames'. Furthermore, in lower level circles/guilds, having the entire sphere be chock full of Elemental damage will absolutely ruin PCs should NPCs being frequenting the Sphere, as they currently do. Perhaps something that changing their spells into Elemental damage for a short period of time?

#4 - Remove this line from the description on thresholds: "elemental is considered magic for the purposes of thresholds". This would make all elemenetal damaging spells bypass all thresholds.
This could be interesting, and I agree with the concept.

#5 - Remove the Waterbreathing spell and replace it with a 10 minute duration packet-delivered attack which causes the target to become vulnerable to one elemental type. This would cause any damage by that elemental type to do x4 damage to the target for 10 minutes.
I also like this.

#6 - Remove both Elemental Blade spells and replace with summoned elemental weapon spells, similar to Psi-Knife and Blade.
I'd say keep the first Elemental Blade the same, and make Greater Elemental Blade the summoned weapon.

Also despite it not being up there, leave Vertigo as is. It makes us happy. Very happy.

My thoughts.
Adam Petković
New Player Liaison at Underworld LARP: Jericho
((PC Email: NWTSP@hotmail.com))

Jericho: Gigoliath the Flame Thrower (Ogre)
Ralinwood: Blank (Faceless)
Ashendael: Om'un Rohgu (Ogre)

Reply
#3
1) This was the original reason that I remorted my first character. Incant was overwhelming for a new player, but after I learned how to incant it became less of a problem.

2) I like this.

3) Maybe for balance purposes, make some of the spells earlier than hellfire or fire wall to be elemental damage, but earlier ones be magic. So that the whole sphere isn't overpowered. I see far too many mages defaulting to a sphere entirely made out of elemental damage simply because it bypasses everything.

4) I like this.

5) I don't mind this.

6) I agree with Adam on this one. The ability to pass the spell to someone else as a buff to their weapon swing allows for an elemental caster to be a utility character rather than brute damage. Allows for variety in play style.
Reply
#4
6) That being said, I really like the idea of having a summon-able elemental blade.
Reply
#5
Going through this one by one

#1: This doesn't matter as much. The incant is still pretty quick. But it could help. Though I think further changes would make this unnecessary.

#2: Like this, it's pretty baller, not necessarily a real mechanics change, but it helps people justify abilities.

#3: As stated above, this creates a odd imbalance, and can cause big issues if NPC camp starts putting out a lot of elemental damage. I'm not so much concerned with fire elementalists going and setting the forest on fire, because it can get handwaved pretty quickly. But the fact that low-level PCs can get hurt bad makes it a strong tool. Overall, I like it, but it shouldn't be abused, but the same can be said with an NPC that has a full set of webs and cocoons.

#4: I don't like this, just because it penetrates arcane thresholds, which I don't think are things that should be hurt by elemental damage. Things that have Arcane Thresholds shouldn't get chumped because a mage got his elementalist buddies together to obliterate him.

#5: I really like this, it's a strong spell, and so long as #4 isn't implemented, I like it. It's basically massive boost.

#6. Don't know how I feel about this. If it goes through, I think the weapon should be grantable, but can't spellstrike. One of best reason to keep an elementalist around is to deal with undead by giving the heavy hitter an elemental blade. But I do really like the idea of creating a blade. It provides the elementalist some good close range and melee capability.
OOG Name: Brendan Goss
Guild: Underworld Kalidor
Kalidor Rules Marshal
Rulebook team 2015/16
Reply
#6
#1 - Reduce the incant size.
I think this would be helpful, it's pretty long and I find myself slipping up on occasion.

#2 - Make every spell in the elemental sphere applicable to each elemental Attunement so that mages don't "skip" over memorizing spells because it doesn't suit their RP.
yeah, had to do some menal gymnastics as to how I, a fire caster, could turn the earth to mud. swampwalk's a useful spell, but it took some minor mental gymnastics to justify it. (My thought was I draw the heat and "dryness" out of the ground, leaving it wet and cold.)

#3 - Change all numeric elemental damage spells to "elemental damage". Not only would this remove bleed counts as per elemental damage rules, it would prevent anti-magic defenses such as Shield Magic and Resist Magic from negating them.
This seems really strong, but as a fairly new player I don't feel qualified to make that judgement.

#4 - Remove this line from the description on thresholds: "elemental is considered magic for the purposes of thresholds". This would make all elemenetal damaging spells bypass all thresholds.
same as last point, but I wouldn't mind it.

#5 - Remove the Waterbreathing spell and replace it with a 10 minute duration packet-delivered attack which causes the target to become vulnerable to one elemental type. This would cause any damage by that elemental type to do x4 damage to the target for 10 minutes.
I would certainly like this, Waterbreathing seems completely useless.

#6 - Remove both Elemental Blade spells and replace with summoned elemental weapon spells, similar to Psi-Knife and Blade.
Atleast one elemental blade would be nice, as other players have mentioned, it's nice to be able to give a hard hitter a bit of an extra boost sometimes.
Reply
#7
For the record I don't think there's anything wrong with the elemental blade spells, balance wise. Changing them to summoned weapons fits the theme of putting power into the hands of the elementalist, instead of them being a support role that empowers another class to be the hero instead.
Edward Watt
Underworld LARP Canada - Co-Founder
Guild Jericho : General Manager
Email: comments@larp.ca
Reply
#8
My current and longest-running PC is an elementalist, so I think I'm entitled to give me 2 cents.

#1 - Reduce the incant size.
Not necessary, the incants for elemental spells are short enough.

#2 - Make every spell in the elemental sphere applicable to each elemental attunement so that mages don't "skip" over memorizing spells because it doesn't suit their RP.
Not really necessary in my opinion. Plus it would mean re-naming six of the eighteen spells and writing new incantations for them. It's just making more work than is needed to change a third of the spells to fit the element the mage is attuned to. I have fire and lightning attunement and no one seems to question my ability to cast 'swampwalk'.

#3 - Change all numeric elemental damage spells to "elemental damage". Not only would this remove bleed counts as per elemental damage rules, it would prevent anti-magic defenses such as Shield Magic and Resist Magic from negating them.
I think this would be a good idea, but only for the 2 higher tier elemental projectiles "Elemental Bolt" (which does 20) and "Elemental Blast" (which does 30). This would limit spam on "5" and "10 elemental <type>" spells and save a lot of lower-level PC's from NPC elementals or elementalists ashing them on their first or second game.

#4 - Remove this line from the description on thresholds: "elemental is considered magic for the purposes of thresholds". This would make all elemenetal damaging spells bypass all thresholds.
Sure, since you're pretty well fucked if you take Elemental to body anyways. Plus it would be nice to have something that a PC can use against arcane-level NPCs.

#5 - Remove the Waterbreathing spell and replace it with a 10 minute duration packet-delivered attack which causes the target to become vulnerable to one elemental type. This would cause any damage by that elemental type to do x4 damage to the target for 10 minutes.
YES, this is a great idea! Waterbreathing is so useless, I'd rather have a spell that makes it so I wouldn't have to dump all my damaging spells into one creature to kill it. I'm putting forward what I suggest the spell to be called and its incantation:
"Elemental Aversion <type>"
"I invoke the elements to inflict <type> Aversion"
The target affected by this spell gains an aversion to the given element <type> and takes x4 damage from said element.

#6 - Remove both Elemental Blade spells and replace with summoned elemental weapon spells, similar to Psi-Knife and Blade.
I personally disagree with this one, as elementalists can use the elemental blade spell on themselves to increase their own weapon damage. This is good for Templar elementalists or arcane archer builds. Plus, it is nice to be able to use the spell on either myself or another PC. The other problem I see is repping the 'elemental blade' if it were a weapon like psi-knife/blade. What colour would properly rep a fire/ice/lightning/earth blade? Also, as an elementalist, I don't really want one of my spells to be a copy-paste version of another sphere's spell.
Home Guildhouse: Ralinwood
Active PC's:
Ralinwood - Kyrem Fidele

Ralinwood 2017 Medical/Safety Marshal 
email: dustinsmithncivs@gmail.com
Reply
#9
Elemental incant: 8 syllables
Protections: 7
Healing / Nature : 6
Psionics: 5

Now add to this that almost every elemental incant also includes the word "elemental" (+4) and you're looking at over 12 syllables per spell.

My thought is to remove that second "elemental" and exchange it for <elemental type>. So you'd end up with something like : "I invoke the elements to inflict fire bolt" (12) vs "I invoke the elements to inflict elemental bolt" (15). I could reduce it even further by replacing the first "elements" with the <elemental type> and then remove the need to repeat it a second time, to end up with : "I invoke fire to inflict bolt" (8). This essentially raises your DPS because you can get more spells off in a shorter period of time, thus increasing the damage you do.
Edward Watt
Underworld LARP Canada - Co-Founder
Guild Jericho : General Manager
Email: comments@larp.ca
Reply
#10
Huh, maybe I'm just used to incanting so quickly I don't notice.
Oh well, good point Mr. Watt, good point.
However, I still stand by my other 5 opinions.
Home Guildhouse: Ralinwood
Active PC's:
Ralinwood - Kyrem Fidele

Ralinwood 2017 Medical/Safety Marshal 
email: dustinsmithncivs@gmail.com
Reply





Users browsing this thread:
1 Guest(s)

Forum software by © MyBB - Vectors created by Christian Kimmermer
     
ABOUT US

    Underworld is a fantasy, medieval, live roleplaying system. Its complex and intelligent rules allow for broad character development including aspects of race, culture, socio-economic background, and faith. ot for the faint of heart, nderworld prides itself on a wide variety of plot; from the fun adventures which LARPers have come to love, to those which include mature subject matter and challenging social issues that may be unsuitable for some. All players must sign our Waiver/Health form before playing to ensure that they fully understand their obligations and restrictions. nderworld prides itself on its diversity and encourages a great time and an educational environment where people from all walks of life can interact and learn from and about each other. Players are encouraged to explore this website thoroughly (especially our policies section) in order to make an informed decision before participating in our events.