Content of the article: "An idea to buff the sorcerer – adding new spells that would really shine with the right meta magic"
After reading a lot about sorcerers I just got an idea how we could maybe buff them, without "reinventing" the entire class.
I just looked over the different sorcerer subclasses and I re-discovered why I love the idea of the design of the divine soul sorcerer – adding cleric spells suddenly opens it up for some things, which I would never consider for other sorcerers. E.g. having inflict wounds on the spell list at least tempts me to take distant spell. Despite me rarely thinking about inflict wounds (its not bad, but it having a range of touch makes me not take it in the end) on the clerics I play/have prepared and me never considering distant spell for a sorcerer otherwise.
So it finally dawned that maybe a slightly unconventional way to improve the sorcerer and maybe even some meta magic choises could be to think of spells that are just OK by themself, but become really interesting with certain sorcerer features (be that either meta magic applications, or other features obtained the sorcerer class or one of its subclasses)
What do you think of the idea and do you have any suggestions? I'm open to hear some since I plan on homebrewing some myself for the games I DM.
Here are some of my thoughts and (first) ideas:
– Of course any touch spell would be interesting, buffing distant spell and thus sorcerers who pick it. Additionally touch spells have some synergy with draconic and storm sorcerer's abilities. Draconic sorcerers are a bit thougher, thus might be slightly more willing to take the risk of an attack (or attack of opportunity) and storm sorcerer's can get out of melee range with their bonus action after casting (and they want to be a bit closer to deal additional damage)
So lets try to focus on all of that with an example: "Draining touch" (necromancy). Range touch. Make a melee spell attack against a creature, on a hit you deal
– Also spells that would use a wording similar to the one of Earth tremor from Xanathar's, which would get its area of effect doubled with distant spell.
E.g. "Acid rain" (conjuration). Range 15ft. Choose a spot you can see. You summon a dark raincloud filled with acid in front of you. The cloud is roughly 5ft in diamater. The magical cloud travels from you to the choosen point where it dissapears in a puff of purple smoke, it rains deadly acid on everything in its path. All creatures in the path make a dexterity saving throw to avoid some of the rain, on a failed safe they take
I left out the spell level and actual damage on purpose, since they are not required for the example. But I would like to add: we could take try to give damage spells 4 or 5 dice, since I think that might have a positive interaction with Empowered spell, giving the sorcerer the opportunity to reroll all the dice of the spell at once
– After looking over sorcerer more in detail I noticed a lot of subclasses have an affinity for attack roll spells. Wild magic can generate advantage, Divine soul can ad 2d4, Shadow can make the darkness they can see through thus also possibly creating advantage. I personally feel like there aren't many great options after 1st lvl… We have what from 2nd lvl spells onward? Scorching ray and that is mostly it if I'm not mistaken (please correct me if I'm wrong). So maybe we could go into the direction of damage + some kind of side debuff (like the one in my first example "Draining touch").
In general we could combine some of the other two bullet points with this. We can easily make a spell that has range, but could use more (or is a touch spell from the start on), maybe is single target (so great for twinning), rolls just enough dice that we can get the most out of empowered if we have it
– The sorcerer is still the only full caster starting with proficiency in con saving throws. So maybe a spell s, that are powerfull but require a con save from the caster to harness that power.
Here is a pretty crazy example I had in mind: "Weave of Illusions" (illusion). 1st lvl. Concentration. Components VS. You let the magic of the weave flow through yourself freely, almost letting it become a part of you and when it exists your body you use that connection to force it into whatever shape you need. Though letting your body overflow with magical energy like that can be harmful. Make a DC 10 constitution saving throw. On a successful save you can copy the effects of any illusion spell of 1st level, on a failed save you take 1d4 force damage and the spell has no effect. If you cast this spell with a spell slot of lvl 2 or higher you can copy the effects of an illusion spell of that level, but the saving throw DC goes up by 3 with every level above 1st and the damage you take on a failed saving throw increases by 1d4 for each level above 1st.
Of course all number are just what I though of in the spur of the moment… This would need a lot of testing – is it to good, to universal? Or far to unreliable? It is supposed to take advantage of the con save of the sorcerer and at the same time give them a little more flexibility by potentially being multiple spells in one. Ideally I would still like it to be an interesting choise for the player to go for unreliable, but powerful and a single spell; or take the couple of illusion spells they want, paying a few extra spells choosen, but get the relyability of it never failing when they need it. I'm not sure this can be balanced in that way, but only testing could get me the answer…
– The last thing on my mind would be to maybe directly either mention the sorcerer class, sorcery points or metamagics in the spell itself (like: if this spell is twinned it can hit an additional target), but I do think that is a bit to on the nose and feels wrong to me personally (somewhat inelegant I guess), so I don't like this option (though of course that is just my opinion)
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