Related to yesterday’s discussion number of allowed spell levels – What would be the great harm of not requiring…

Related to yesterday’s discussion number of allowed spell levels – What would be the great harm of not requiring…

Related to yesterday’s discussion number of allowed spell levels – What would be the great harm of not requiring spell memorization? The number of spells castable would remain the same and the Wizard would still be restricted to known spells.

15 thoughts on “Related to yesterday’s discussion number of allowed spell levels – What would be the great harm of not requiring…”

  1. Gordon Spencer What Robert is saying one of the penalties for a 7-9 (or frankly a 6- if GM decides “to use up your resources:) is that you can lose spell until the next day thus making you think twice about magic missling every mosquito you see.

    Without memorization that throws that balance out of whack a little unless you introduce a similar concept or are ok with the implications.

  2. A 1st level wizard gets spell levels equal to level +1, or two spell levels. Using the RAW, I can memorize 2 first level spells, and if I am fortunate can cast and recast. Eventually, I am likely to fail a roll and forget one or both.

    Following my query, a 1st level Wizard get spell levels equal to level +1, or two spell levels. I don’t memorize a specific spell, but rather chose from any known. If I cast MM and fail, I am down to one spell level. If I cast MM and succeed, I still have two available spell levels.

    I don’t see a lot of difference other than allowing a spell caster a few more options.

  3. Robert Slaughter Agreed and Wizards don’t have the restrictions of spell their level or lower. So if at 2nd level the Wizard has been able to manage to find multiple 3rd level spells (or create them via Ritual) then having to instead choose 1 or have all spells available at any time really does change the traditional “planning” a wizard has to do.

    Now if you aren’t a fan of that in traditional D&D style and want more the sorcerer feel that’s totally cool. But in D&D 3.0+ the sorcerer was usually balanced by fewer casts per day because of the increased versatility.

  4. Also remember that in an hour time you can change your spells to adapt to another situation. It’s more flexible than a AD&D wizard !

  5. Magi max sure, but the “memorization requirement” says something about how magic works that I find midly annoying from a fictional perspective. It’s not necessarily something that I can’t overcome, just something that nags at the back of my brain. I’ll be fine 🙂

  6. Gordon Spencer, it might be worth noting that even though everyone talks about “memorization”, that’s not what the rules say.  The move is “Prepare spells”, and that taking the 7-9 result on Cast a Spell doesn’t mean you’ve somehow become stupid and can’t remember something you knew by heart this morning — it means more like, some aspect of your mystic preparation has burned out, and the spell isn’t castable anymore until you have time to re-prepare.  That said, I’m sure that if you want something more like a mana system, what you suggest would probably work.  If the Wizard threatens to steal the spotlight by being too powerful, you just have to be ready to get more cruel on the consequences of spell failure (6- rolls).

  7. There’s a free freeform-spellcaster class available on drivethroughrpg (the Mage) , you may consider taking a look at that to see if it fits your style better.

  8. Now that I am home and can review my notes, here is the Move associated with “no memorization” spell casting.

    Cast an Mana Spell

    When you Cast a Mana Spell, roll +INT. On 10+ the spell is a success. On 7-9, the spell is cast, you lose Mana, and choose one: 

    • You draw unwelcome attention to yourself. The GM will tell you how.

    • The spell disrupts your Magic:  take -1 ongoing to cast a spell until the next time you Recover Man.

    • Lose 2 hp due to extra strain or harm caused by your own magic.

    Note that with this Move the spell energy is only retained on a 10+ (about 17%) while in the RAW a spell can be “not forgotten” on 7+ (roughly 58%). 

    I think the 40% difference in spell retention offsets the ability to cast on the fly.

  9. FWIW, you probably should assume a Wizard with INT +2, so your mana is retained 42%, while a RAW spell is “not forgotten” 72%.  This might not change your argument, mind.

  10. my 2 (euro) cents: it’s been implied in the whole discussion but I think this has to be made clearer (at least re-reading the first posts by gordon spencer): it’s not that on a miss the wizard always forgets his spell, on the contrary this is a very rare happening (at least in my games). There are lots of more interesting things you can do. Usually, for the first times I ask the most vicious player: “hey, what happens when your wizard friend fails bad with this spell?” Then I take notice and expand on the answers for future, higher level spells. Missed results included: the magic missile blows up in your face; invisibility has a permanent duration; you actually summon the spirit you wanted to talk to (and it’s usually not friendly); the target you attempted to charme suffers a complete lobotomy; in WoDu, the spirit you summoned attempts to free itself from the bond; and so on.

    All of this to say: a wizard usually loses a spell only on a 7-9 result and even then only if his priorities don’t include casting again that spell. In my experience, this comes by only if the wizard already took at least a -1 ongoing to cast spells (with 18 intelligence, they most often go down to -2) AND the entire party is short on HPs and couldn’t withstand the attention of some other threat to come by.

    These conditions are so difficult to meet, 90% of the times when the party makes camp or comes back to the city, the wizard has almost all of his spells still available. Honestly, after almost a year of gaming with DW I’ve yet to see a wizard saying “guys let’s come back to town that I ran out of spells”.

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