Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Revised GURPS Magic: Dispel Magic and Fast-Fire

Here are some spell revisions from my DF game.

I'd talked before about Dispel Magic. It's rarely used because it is:

- expensive
- slow
- opposed

So it's basically set aside and people try to deal with magical problems by circumvention or by using a different spell entirely to somehow undo the effects of the spell. That might sound attractive, but it's as time consuming and enjoyable as hammering nails in with a screwdriver in actual play.

So I've modified Dispel Magic as follows:

Dispel Magic

As written, except:

Time to Cast: 5 seconds.

A small change, but it does mean time to cast is fixed - 5 seconds, 3 for most skill 20 casters in a DF game. The cost is open-ended, but it's an area spell and hits many spells.

Next up is Fast Fire. This spell is a problem on many levels.

First, it's a regular spell. So how do you deal with the size of a fire? You have to assign it a SM. That's . . . ugly.

Next, it has very undefined effects and open-ended effects.

It really needs to just be an area spell, and work more like its prerequisite, Slow Fire.

Here it is, revised:

Fast Fire
Area (but see below)

As written, except change the last sentence to: "This spell acts as a Great Haste spell (see Magic, p. 146) on fire elementals and beings with the Body of Fire meta-trait; treat this as a Regular spell, resisted by HT, when cast on a being instead of an area."

Maximum effect is 3x as fast.

Slow Fire has the exact same last sentence, except it acts as a Slow spell (see Magic, p. 145) instead.

Maximum effect is 1/3 as fast.

I treat the multiplying effect as working on damage, dividing duration, and so on. So Fast Fire cast at 3 base cost multiplies a fire's rate by 3, but divides duration by 3.

I need to work on Spark Storm and Windstorm from more. Those are very problematic spells for me, and I'm never happy with how they work out in play either from ease of use, effects, expectations of the players and the GM, etc. They're a time grind that come with game effects. We'll see what I can do with them when I have some time.

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