Larian Studios
Posted By: Niara Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 03:16 AM
This feedback is focused on the current interpretation and implementation of spells and spell effects, partially along with what we've been told to expect regarding some of these in the future. There is cross-over between this, and the issue of status effects and their implementation, but this feedback will focus on spells.

Wizard Cantrips

Mending, Message and Prestidigitation are missing from Wizard cantrips, however, as much as they're fun and almost indispensable cantrips for many players in actual 5e RP, it's understandable why they don't make the cut for a video game. I'd like it if we could have Mending to repair objects that get broken or shattered, but failing that perhaps it could restore a damaged object to full hp instead.

Message could be given a situational role; since it's inaudible to anyone else, it can function as a form of private communication, and it could potentially also be used to initiate dialogue with a character from long range, such as talking to prisoners you're not supposed to visit, or other similar situations.... again though, it's niche. I'd like to see it, but I won't complain about its lack.

Presti might be nice to have little camp scene niceties be improved as long as someone in camp has access to the cantrip – easy fire lighting, better food, easy cleaning, etc... creature comfort details. It would be background thing though, I imagine, so unless our camp gets a lot more atmospheric, probably also not worth the investment.

Acid Splash: The explode radius of the game's interpretation of this spell means that it can easily hit up to 4 targets, rather than the original 2. It creates a surface as well, but I'll write a section on that later; it's been heavily discussed by many already. (*Fixed*) This spell's explode radius should be reduced to 3ft; this brings it into line with the written spell, and would still allow you to catch two targets with it. Though the original spells specifically calls out targeting a creature, or two creatures, this one should benefit from being able to be targeted at a ground spot, as long as there's at least one target in its radius.

Blade Ward: The extra turn of duration is a positive boost to this otherwise difficult to use cantrip. Thumbs up from me for this one.

Dancing Lights: The ability to control and move the lights is much more limited in the game's translation, but it is acceptable. I'd very much like to be able to target it on four points within range, rather than one, as that would help it line up with the written spell better. I'd also like a few different colours...

Fire Bolt: Fire bolt, due to its surface creation, is a guaranteed damage cantrip right now. This is absolute anathema to the way spells are designed and balanced... if we have a cantrip that deals damage guaranteed, even when you miss or critical miss, then it drastically weakens all other levelled spells by comparison. I've found frequently that the most effective way for my casters to take their turns in fights is to simply ignore all of their other spell options, and just spam fire bolt; this is not good. Fire Bolt should not create a surface at all. Take that away, and give it BACK its d10 damage die. (*Fixed: Surface spawn removed and d10 damage die restored*)

Light: I like light. It's neat and well handled for the most part. You can do everything you might want to with it, including casting it on an object and putting that object in your pack to hide the light until you take it out. That's great. The one flaw is that you cannot dismiss the light in any way. The best fix for this is simple; have casting light on an object with the light status simply remove the light status again. Yes it'll take another action to do, but it's straight forward and saves you having to put another button somewhere. (*Edited: Light has been updated so that now you can only have Light on one thing at a time. This does allow you to dismiss light on an existing object, in a round-about sort of way.)

Mage Hand: Just no. This is bad. Mage Hand cannot attack – the spell specifically calls that out, so WHY did you give it an attack? Mage Hand is not concentration, and the most it can carry is 10lb, so it can't realistically shove anyone. What Mage Hand should be doing is allowing us to open chests and doors at range, and to carry up to 10lb of stuff from said chests back to us, or around the immediate area as needed.

Minor Illusion: A better visual would be nice. I'm assuming the training dummy is a place-holder for now. Other than that, its translation into game does what you'd expect of it. Thumbs up.

Poison Spray: Seems to work as written and as described by the game's tooltips. Thumbs up.

Ray of Frost: The other big problem cantrip, again because it creates a surface regardless that the target must immediately save against. Except, according to the combat log, they often don't even get to attempt a save if targeted directly... My combat log track for this shows a critical miss, followed by the target acquiring the Prone condition, with no save offered. Sometimes they do get a save; it seems inconsistent. Given the problem with the prone condition this becomes brutally overpowered for a cantrip (free automatic concentration break, etc.). Ray of Frost should not create a surface at all... or at the very least, if it must, it should not create a surface if targeting an enemy. Attempting to shoot the ground just under an enemy in that case should just snap the target to them. (*Fixed!*)

Shocking Grasp: Seems to be working as written and as described in tooltips. On its own its perfect. It should, however, not be creating large swathes of electrified water or blood that can down an entire room... and I've seen it do that when combined with water on the floor. That's bonkers. Shocking grasp has advantage on targets wearing metal armour. If you want it to interact with surfaces, why don't you have it also grant advantage when targeted against an enemy that is wet, or standing in water? No extra effects or room electrification.

True Strike: The extra duration (slightly) improves this originally difficult to use cantrip. Thumbs up!

1st Level Spells:

Missing: Alarm, Comprehend Languages, Detect Magic, Floating Disc, Hideous Laughter(*), Identify, Illusory Script, Shield, Silent Image, Unseen Servant.

Alarm is niche, but I'd like to see it added to the game if we have more travel and more camp-related surprises. Any situation where we might get ambushed at our camp, having any character with access to Alarm as a ritual could prevent surprise or something of that nature. It's understandable that it's not present in the game as currently presented, however.

Chromatic Orb is a puzzling one, especially given how much current game design favours and loves attack roll spells. I can only suppose that it is absent because it involves player choice in combat... more on that issue later, but the short is that anything that involves player choice in combat is largely incompatible with the current game design, and it absolutely NEEDS to be fixed.

Comprehend Languages is also puzzling, given how many “A language you can't read/don't know” I ran into just in the first chapter. There's more than enough material to warrant the spell's inclusion.

Detect Magic and Identify's absences are understandable for the time being, where everything even remotely magical is flashy, highly visible, and already fully identified from the outset. I'd like this to change, but if it doesn't, it's not something I'd rise hell over.

Floating Disc is one I'd like to see: given the mechanics BG3 is already using for summons, floating Disc would just be a summon with a large carrying capacity... a welcome follower for that noodle-armed wizard. Also the amusing consequence of everything cascading onto the ground when it goes away on along rest.

Hideous Laughter was removed from the wizard's list, even though it is in the game, and available to the Old One Warlock. Why? Why arbitrarily remove this spell from Wizards? Give it back. I'll break the spell itself down in the Warlock section, since that's where it is in the current game.

Illusory Script, Unseen Servent, Silent Image: These spells are understandably missing, due to their niche application, or function that doesn't apply well to a video game scenario.

Shield: The lack of Shield is utterly unforgivable, though comments from the team imply we'll get it later, when they've sorted some other things out... however, those comments describe a way of handling reactions in combat that is simply not going to cut it at all... this comes back to player choice in combat, and the way the game currently denies it.

To the spells that are represented:

Burning Hands: Seems to work both as written and as described by the game. The fact that fire bolt creates a surface and this doesn't is a bit silly. Fire bolt should not, while higher level fire spells maybe could. If Burning Hands was to create a surface underneath it, you would need to reduce its damage die by one. Otherwise it's fine as is.

Charm Person: As far as I've been ale to check, upcasting this does nothing; you don't get the extra targets, at least not as far as I've seen. That needs to be fixed. The other problem here is that its description in its spell card, its tooltip, and its status effect disagree with and contradict each other. One says that it gives advantage on all checks in dialogue (charmer against charmed), while the other says you have advantage on all charisma checks against the target. These are not the same thing... and it's concerning to think that Larian supposes they are. If the charmed tooltip is accurate (stating that we have advantage on all ability checks in dialogue with the target), we should have advantage on insight checks, as well as an Intelligence (history, religion, etc.,) checks we make in the course of conversation to mention, bring up, or respond to information... if the Spell description is correct (advantage on charisma checks), then we do not. They currently contradict.

Neither the spell card, nor the tooltip indicate that the charm will break on damage or harmful activity... though they do. That's kind of an important detail to leave out. Charmed targets will often go out of their way to provoke opportunity attacks and thus free themselves of the charm. They seem to do this knowingly and deliberately. That's a problem. Our characters take those opportunity attacks, despite knowing that the target is charmed. Also a problem.

Colour Spray and Sleep: These spells use the die average rather than rolling, and that's okay, in a pinch. The bigger problem is this: In the original rules, Colour Spray will blind 4 goblins on average, and can blind up to 8 on a good roll. In BG3 currently, it might blind 2 goblins, at MOST. Sleep, in the original rules, will sleep 3 goblins on an average roll, while in the game it can sleep 2 goblins at most... and it only gets two goblins because they aren't actually using the die average – at level one – it's 2 points higher, to Allow it to get 2 goblins.... die average would only get 1 goblin in game. This is a large weakening of these spells, as a result of the largely thoughtless changes to monster stats to favour attack rolls, to the detriment of everything else.

Disguise Self: Currently cannot be cast with a higher level slot. At all. No reason for this – I'm going to presume it's a bug, and I've submitted it as such. Otherwise the spell's function is very limited in game. More options would be good. Perhaps the ability to target a creature we can see to assume their appearance?

Expeditious Retreat: Currently works exactly as it does in the original rules, however, the spell itself doesn't indicate this, and that may lead it to be very misleading to people who don't already know 5e or the spell. Reading the tooltips and spell cards, right now, you'd believe that you have to cast it with your bonus action, but don't get any extra movement until next turn, since you'd have already used your bonus action this turn. In reality, it DOES also give you dash when you cast it, but it needs to say that.

False Life: False Life claims it gives a flat number (which is below the expected spell average), however in reality it gives more than that. At 1st level, it claims to give 5, but gives 7 when cast, while at second level it claims to give 10, but gives 12 when cast.

Feather Fall: Saving discussion about Larian's intention for handling reactions and player choice in combat for later, the fact that Feather Fall lasts for the full minute after casting is actually a good tweak for a video game medium. The fact that we cannot actually use it to save people who need it, unless we psychically know ahead of time and pre-cast it, is unacceptable... I will say that in a game setting, we should certainly be *Able* to pre-cast it before jumping the party off a cliff... but that shouldn't take away from it being a proper reaction to save ourselves from an unexpected fall, which is the spell's primary purpose.

Find Familiar: The spell card says that it summons a fey, but it doesn't. Our familiar is a Beast, not a Fey – and this is a distinction that matters for various reasons. Inaccurate tooltip aside, this needs to be fixed. The bigger issue with Find Familiar as it stands is that we cannot use it for one of its most versatile applications, which is the delivering of our touch spells through the familiar. This is an important part of the spell, a very important part of it, in fact. This needs to be rectified.

Fog Cloud: Works as written in the original rules, however the tooltip and spell card do not indicate this; you get a larger cloud on upcast, but someone not familiar with 5e already has no way of knowing that.

Grease: Grease is not flammable. There was even a sage advice on this. If the spell created a flammable surface, it would say so. It does not. Lubricating grease just isn't a flame hazard. If the spell was “Oilslick”, sure... but it's not. It shouldn't burn; in fact it should douse and replace fire surfaces. A bigger problem exists with Grease, but it's an issue that plagues many, many spells, and I'll talk about it in more detail below. The issue is in timing; *When* you make your saves is very important to the balance of spells, and the current implementation throws that right out the window in a bad way. More on bad spell timing changes below.

Jump: Works as written, however it hits up against a problem in the game's design. Distance travelled with a jump is just a part of your movement, and jumping itself does not, and should not, cost any part of your turn economy. As it is, this spell can let people jump upwards of 60 feet, and then use the rest of their movement as well... it should not do this, and it causes balance problems. The minotaurs with the 90 foot jump are an example of some of the tomfoolery this approach to jumping and movement causes. This is especially terrible considering the nearly-across-the-board decrease in spell ranges. (Added: Supposed verticality is also an issue here - we can't jump where we can't see, and we cannot move the camera to higher areas manually; even 'tactical view' does not answer this issue with being able to see higher floors. Our ability to jump upwards doesn't increase at all, partially as a result of this.)

Longstrider: Works as written, though it's really quite excessively flashy in its visual effect. Since we often target this spell on allies or multiple allies, it highlights a particularly bad problem with targeting buff spells on allies, related to the game's pathing system and movement: I tried to cast this spell with Gale as the spell's second target Four times in a row. Each time, I prepared the spell, waited until everyone stopped running laps around me for some reason, moved my cursor until myself and gale were highlighted as the receiving targets.. held still to make sure everyone was still, and clicked the button. The character cast, everyone ran around like ninnies again, and Gale did not get the buff, because the spell missed him... only my character got it. On the subsequent three tries, I failed, each time, to buff Gale. Do fix this nonsense, Larian.

Mage Armour: No, just no. Mage armour in the game currently says it “Increases your AC by 3”. That is Not what Mage armour does, and for very good reason. (*Edit: Mage Armour has been fixed and now, despite lazy wording, acts as it is meant to and lets you calculate your AC as 13 + Dex when wearing no armour. Draconic Sorcerers confirm that this has not been allowed to stack, and is working correctly. Thumbs up.)

Magic Missile: Works as written, but it's not nearly as 'unerring' as it claims. Magic Missile should not miss; that's its whole deal... yet it has a nasty habit of doing so in this game. It should not plot tracking lines that can be interrupted – rather this spell should target LoS on the creatures in question, and provided that is fine, no trace is made; they should give a *visual* of streaking through the air, definitely... but they should not actually trace paths that can be interrupted, if the spell has functional LoS.

Protection from Evil and Good: This one seems to work as written and described. Thumbs up!

Ray of Sickness: Works as written and described, however, the spell card should indicate that it requires both a ranged attack roll and a Con save if it hits. It currently doesn't say this, which will mislead people.

Thunderwave: Thunderwave has received a small boost, in that it pushes targets 20 feet now. It seems to work as advertised, however, the spell itself has been made weaker relatively speaking, to the rules and the game by virtue of the way shoving now works... Thunderwave has far less value when you can shove someone 15 feet as a bonus action. It's not worth its spell slot, in light of that.

Witch Bolt: Mostly works as written, however, it doesn't snap when you range out; it should. It also doesn't accurately indicate concentration time, and the tooltips and icons are misleading and contradictory.

2nd Level Spells:

Acid Arrow: Works as written, however the tooltip references the target making a save, even though the spell is an attack roll, and no saving throws are involved at any point.

Alter Self: Alter Self is missing, even though several of its well defined functions could be used, and we would want to hope that the game will eventuality allow situations for the other ones too. If we'll never get to swim at all, that would be very unfortunate, but lacking that, the ability to give yourself a natural weapon attack that counts as magical and has a +1 bonus is a nice feature that could easily be done. Copying someone else' appearance also has useful applications.

Arcane Lock: Missing from the game, for no real reason that I can see, other than that it was deemed unlikely that players would ever want to re-lock a door... Maybe too niche, and I suppose that's understandable, but I'd still like to see it as an option.

Blindness/Deafness: The game does not have the deafened status condition, as this version of the spell clearly shows us. That in itself is a problem, especially for bards, who have many spells and abilities that depend on the targets being able to hear. The range on the spell is longer, which isn't bad thing. The spell also suffers from the bad spell timing problem that I've mentioned before. Spells of this nature have been made massively weaker and massively less appealing as a result of spell save timing changes. Hopefully it's not intended and they'll fix it.

Blur: Seems to work as written and described. Thumbs up.

Cloud of Daggers: absent. This creates a cloud effect that deals damage. I thought for sure Larian would be all over getting this one into the game. (*Fixed: Cloud of Daggers is now in game, and available on the correct caster lists; spell will be detailed in the Sorcerer section)

Continual Flame: Missing, but for understandable reasons.

Crown of Madness: Missing, but for no discernible reason. It's a little bit more complicated than some spells, but not so much as to warrant its removal from the game. (*Fixed: Cloud of Daggers is now in game, and available on the correct caster lists; spell will be detailed in the Sorcerer section)

Darkness: The game version of darkness says that you can't make attacks into or out of it. I don't know why; that's completely made up, and in fact, largely renders the spell useless. You've also done darkness in this instance completely incorrectly. Darkness creates an area that is Heavily Obscured. Trying to attack something *IN* an area that is heavily obscured is hard - you, the attacker, are treated as functionally blind against that target. The darkness does *Not* inflict the Blind condition on people *In* it; that's completely undermining the function of the spell and makes it purposeless.

Someone *In* an area that is heavily obscured, attempting to attack someone who is *Not* in a heavily obscured area is *not* debilitated... in fact, they generally have *Advantage*, because *They* are an unseen attacker, in relation to the target they are attacking.

If you are a sneaky halfling, in the depths of a long, dark cave... and some big job steps onto a high ledge and waves their torch around... you might be 120 feet away, but you can still see them, and you can still shoot them with your bow... at advantage, because *they* cannot see *you* in the darkness – their torch light doesn't reach that far. This is how light and shadow works.

This is why drow get the spell; this is why drow assassins use the spell... they create a cloud of darkness, from which people can't see them attacking, and within which they are relatively safe from being attacked... but they can still see the lovely illuminated, lit up people on the outside that they want to shoot.

Fix this, Larian, and while you're at it, fix light and darkness, and also, please, fix the fact that the Devil's Sight Warlock invocation doesn't work... because you get just as debilitated by Darkness as everyone else.

Detect Thoughts: While this does actually seem to function, sort of, it took some testing. It's deeply unclear the correct method of using this spell to actually get it to show up in conversation. Rewrite the tooltip and spell card to describe how the spell is actually used in this game; this is one of the places where, with its in-game functionality, you need to stray from the basic description and actually give details. It needn't be much: “While under the effects of this spell, you may get additional options in dialogues to read people's thoughts”, or something of that sort. The other minor complaint I have is that most people use detect thoughts to skim surface thoughts and direct their conversation – this method is subtle and undetectable. Using the probe is indelicate and is usually a last resort. We should get conversation prompts to subtly listen to surface thoughts (no roll or check), and then maybe get new dialogue options based on what we learn and how we might like to apply that.

Enlarge/Reduce: Missing from the spell list, even though it's clearly already in the game elsewhere. Please return it to Wizards. (*Fixed: Cloud of Daggers is now in game, and available on the correct caster lists; spell will be detailed in the Sorcerer section)

Flaming Sphere: Missing. (*Now in game; See the Druid Spell Section)

Gentle Repose: Missing, but understandably so.

Gust of Wind: Missing, but could work like a cloud effect that pushes people in a direction once a turn?

Hold Person: Works as written and listed, but suffers badly from the spell timing problem, like other spells: even on a success, the enemy will get a second chance to save out, and if they succeed, you get no benefit from the spell at all, despite originally sticking it successfully.

Invisibility: Works mostly as written, with some problems: Many mundane actions break invisibility – such as Dash. That's ridiculous. Also, invisible characters do not take opportunity attacks, even when it would be advantageous to do so – no reason that the wouldn't, especially considering our characters do take opportunity attacks on charmed enemies, when it's a bad idea to do so.

Knock: Missing, and for no good reason. Put it in please.

Levitate: Missing. Flight and levitation cannot realistically be left out of this game, not in this day and age. (*Edit: This is not looking hopeful at all, since they've given us flying creatures that can't actually fly)

Locate Object, Magic Mouth, Magic Aura: All absent, but for understandable reasons.

Mirror Image: No. Just No. This is not how the spell works at all, and there's no reason for it not to work as written. The way mirror image is implemented in the game currently makes it *Massively* weaker than its PnP version. This one isn't even an issue of player choice in combat - accurate mirror image would be entirely automatic! In this game, any miss, even a natural one, causes you to lose an image... that's stupid. The way the spell should work, is that when you're attacked, you roll a die – if you successfully redirect, the attack is aimed at an image, who has an AC of their own and can still be missed. The game's Mirror Image spends itself out on the first three no-chance attacks that would never have hit you anyway, and that's no good. Fix This.

Misty Step: Works as written, but... for some reason... the spell description for the spell has been changed from referencing silvery mist, to referencing black mist... er... why?

Phantasmal Force: Missing. This one could be put in in a limited sense; you could create a summon image, or the appearance of a damaging surface, which would be tied to your target. The summon version could attack the target for the listed psychic damage, while their AI would treat the surface as real and attempt to avoid it (or take psychic damage from it if they don't). I suspect this comes down to the game's inability to handle player choice in combat again.

Ray of Enfeeblement: Working as written and listed but is another victim of bad save timing, making the spell weaker and less valuable.

Rope Trick: Missing, but understandably so.

Scorching Ray: Working as written and listed, except that its range has been halved... while creature's ability to move out of range has not been decreased, and in many cases is even stronger than in the original rules. This weakens spells like this overall.

See Invisibility: Missing, for no discernible reason.

Spider Climb: Missing, but I'd really love to see them put it in.

Suggestion: Missing, but understandably so.

Web: In the original rules, web fills a cube; it's not a ground surface. Even when layered on the ground, it creates a 5 foot deep layer on the floor. Read that again. 5 foot deep. It's thick and nasty. Web offers no save out to restrained targets. Targets must use their action if they want to attempt to break free – but can stay restrained and use their actions for other things if they want to. The duration in game has also been drastically shortened (while fog cloud remained the same?). The result is that, overall, Web's actual value has been reduced substantially. I feel like I'm saying the same thing uncomfortably often...

On to Cleric (Excluding spells already covered):

Cleric Cantrips:

Spare the Dying: Missing, rendered redundant when the help action heals and brings characters up.... But it can be used at range and as a bonus action by Grave Clerics, so they may need a special version of it.

Guidance: The in game tooltip and spell card use the PHB texts... despite the fact that the in-game implementation is different. In game, it applies to all appropriate checks for the duration. I think this improvement of the cantrip isn't bad, really... it makes it much stronger, but it is a concentration cantrip, so it can afford to be. Please fix the spell card and tooltips to reflect this.

Resistance: as with guidance, this now applies to all saves for the duration. Here, the tooltips and spell card actually do reflect this. This is a step up for the cantrip, and more than for guidance – save bonuses are powerful. Not beyond the realms of where a cantrip can be though, since it's only one target. I think it's a good change.

Sacred Flame: Sacred flame works as written, but it normally has a rider which lets it ignore half and three-quarters cover. Without cover rules, that effect is gone now, and it didn't get anything to replace it. Coupled with the greatly decreased value of saving throw damage spells, sacred flame is much weakened, relatively speaking.

Thaumaturgy: I'm not a fan of the interpreted effect of thaumaturgy in the game. I'd much rather it allowed us to open unlocked doors at range.

1st Level Spells

Bane: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

Bless: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

Command: More commands would be good; again, a victim of the game's incompatibility with player choice in combat. The distance that creatures must be from each other on upcast has been reduced to 15ft, down from 30ft... for no discernible reason. Please fix this.

Create/Destroy Water: Create water is working fine, and as expected. Why no Destroy water effect to remove a water surface? Once again, this may be related to a lack of player choice in combat. (*Destroy water is now in as well. Finally we can clean up all the blood in our camp...) (*Edit: Create or Destroy Water currently cannot be cast with anything other than a 1st level spell slot.)

Cure Wounds: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

Detection Spells: We can see everything already, inspecting tells us everything, and any poisoned water supplies or poisoned apples will have handy little name tags identifying them as such... so I suppose it's no surprise that these ones are all missing?

Guiding Bolt: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

Healing Word: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

Inflict Wounds: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

Purify Food and Drink: Missing, but I doubt the current game engine could handle it – it's not equipped to turn one item into another item, or so it seems.

Sanctuary: Missing, but for no discernible reason.

Shield of Faith: Works as written and listed, but cannot be cast using a higher level slot at all.

2nd Level Spells:

Aid: Hits the whole party now, but otherwise works fine. I like this marginal improvement.

Augury: Missing, but understandably so.

Calm Emotions: Missing. This could be a way of turning red targets yellow again, perhaps. It also suppresses fear and charm effects, so it would be good to see it in.

Enhance Ability: Missing. This is straight forward and easy to do, and translates well to a game medium. The only reason is that it's a spell that involves player choice... so it's not here. (*In now, See the Druid section)

Find Traps: Missing, despite plenty of evidence and opportunity when it would be a valuable spell to have, and being something that translates to a game medium very easily and well. Given how many traps there are kicking about even in act one, I expect to see this one in.

Lesser Restoration: The in game tooltip and spell card are terribly unclear about what it can and can't actually restore. This needs clarified.

Prayer of Healing: In game, this is now a 1 action cast time, but it's been given an out of combat lock. This is a really good video game adaptation of the original spell. Well done, thumbs up.

Protection from Poison: Missing, for no discernible reason. It should cure a poison, and provide advantage on saves against poison and the poisoned condition... fairly straight forward. (*Fixed; see Druid list)

Silence: Spells in game currently do not indicate their V/S/M requirements... a player not familiar with D&D or 5e wouldn't even have any idea that such things exist. They appear to be absent from the game... and yet... Silence, the spell, claims it blocks casting of spells with verbal requirements. It then adds more confusion to the mix, because the status effect of silence reads as “Muted: can't cast spells”. Despite this, as it turns out... there actually may be some recording of V/SM requirements under the hood that we can't see.. because we *Can* cast Friends, and Minor Illusion, while we are in an area of silence... which just happen to be the only two spells in the game currently which do not have a verbal component. Please clean this up... please give the information that we need to understand things properly, even those not familiar with 5e. Spells should display their V/S/M needs, tooltips should accurately reflect the actual ways that spells have been implemented.

Spiritual Weapon: Missing. This is a signature Cleric spell, and one of the main tools in their arsenal. There's no reason for it to be missing.

Warding Bond: Missing. This one is a little more complicated, but that's no excuse for leaving it out.

Zone of Truth: Missing. Likely only with specific story uses, so understandable, but still a shame.

Warlock next. Invocations have their own host of problems, but that'll have to wait for a class by class break down, if I can get to it, this is just about Spells.

Warlock Cantrips

Eldritch Blast: Works as written and listed, but its range has been drastically shortened, which cuts its value slightly.

1st Level Spells:

Armour of Agathys: Works properly, but the 2nd level usually only delivers 5 damage regardless. I have, on occasion, seen it pay out 10, properly, but only very rarely. It's almost always 5.

Arms of Hadar: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

Hellish Rebuke: This is another one that is a mess because they aren't handling reactions well, and are denying player choice in combat. Aside from this the spell card and tooltip don't list the save that the spell requires.

Hex: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up. Also, demonstrates one way they could give us some elements of player choice for spells... that just makes us ask why all of the other omissions and spell cripples didn't get this treatment...

Patron Spells:

Dissonant Whispers: This spells should *Not* inflict the Frightened condition. It causes the target to consume its reaction and run away immediately... however, it does not impact the victim's own turn when it comes around. This throws off the balance of this spell in a bad way.

Hideous Laughter: This should still be on the Wizard list as well, and there's no reason for it to have been removed from them. That aside: As written, the spell inflicts prone and incapacitation (Prone inflicts Unconscious, which carries Incapacitation, or seems to, so unless you actually *Intend* for Prone to carry Unconscious, this is a redundancy), and allows a save at the end of each of the victim's turns, as well as a save with advantage any time they take damage. In game, the spell card and tooltip indicate that they get a save (but not advantage) when taking damage... but for some reason, it also implies that failing the save causes the victim to take more damage. Hitting the target and not breaking the effect does not, in fact, cause them to take any additional damage, so I don't know what that tooltip is going on about or what it's supposed to mean.

2nd Level Spells

Enthrall: Missing. This one should be in; anyone who fails the save has disadvantage on perception checks to notice anyone else. Good for the caster helping the rogue, for example.

Shatter: Seems to work as written and listed, however the spell card does not list the save that the spell requires.

Patron Spells:

Phantasmal Force, which is absent, has been replaced with Silence. A fair enough swap for the Great Old One, I suppose.

Ranger next.

1st Level Spells:

Animal Friendship: In game, this now says it lasts 10 rounds, when as written it should last all day. There was no need to shorten this spell's duration.

Ensnaring Strike: This is a MESS. Ensnaring strike should be a bonus action, because the attack that carries it is not a part of the spell. This is important because a part of the balance value of the spell is that you don't lose it – it works next time you hit, even if you miss a few times first. That matters. You can maintain it for up to a minute, when you do stick a hit, the target makes a Str save (large creatures and bigger have advantage). A restrained target, can use its action to try to tear free, with a Strength check. A nearby ally can do the same.

In game right now, this spell takes your action... which, for ranger, is going to screw up its usefulness even further, once they hit level 5 and get extra attack. It includes a single attack, which, if you miss, just means the entire spell is wasted (but of course, it still interrupts your concentration if you were concentrating on something else before hand). If you do hit, and the target is restrained, sorry, Ensnared, and the spell card and status tooltip indicate that you can use your action to try to break free... this is an absolute and utter lie. No such action exists. The spell was never implemented that way, and who knows why it was deemed wise to put a complete falsehood on the spell card. An ally can indeed break you free, of course, using the Help action... but that isn't a 'try' to break you free, and there is no check – it's an automatic success... and you can't 'help' yourself. Also making two separate buttons for the spell using a melee weapon or a ranged one... more excessive clutter and mess. This spell is a garbage fire right now.

Goodberry: Missing. Don't know why it isn't in – the game likes littering so much free healing food everywhere, and yet it baulked at having a spell that crates some 1hp food items in your inventory (which remove themselves when you LR). (*Fixed: See the Druid list)

Hail of Thorns: As with Ensnaring strike, this should just be a bonus action, because the attack that carries it is not actually a part of the spell, and making that attack part of the spell hugely devalues the spell by messing up extra attack. This is the only spell in the game that proudly declares itself to require BOTH your action and your bonus action... so it takes it a step further in terms of wastefulness and mess than even ensnaring strike does.

The spell does not function properly, even then: misses with the attack still actually hit.... but the system still makes rolls despite that. It's very inefficient and wasteful. The event log I used to test this had recorded the attack roll being a 3 plus my bonuses, failing to meet Shadowheart's AC. The next line showed it applying the base shot piercing damage to her anyway (1d6+3), then applying the thorns damage (1d10)... and then, oddly, applying colossus slayer damage, even though Shadowheart had been on full health before I made the shot.. so that's another problem, but it'll wait for the class break downs. As much or more of a garbage fire as Ensnaring Strike.

Hunter's Mark: The range has been shortened, as with many spells. The spell card and tooltip for this don't specify that it only adds damage to weapon attacks from the caster; it needs to, otherwise people will be expecting bonus damage from other sources, and will feel either confused or cheated when they don't get it. The spell card only talks about the bonus damage, however, when you inspect the debuff that is on an enemy it says the caster gets advantage on 'all perception and survival checks' The caster isn't told this in their own spell anywhere... and I've not been able to test if it's actually working. At the very least, I expect that it is advantage on perception and survival checks to perceive or track the target... but it doesn't say that... it just says 'All'.

Speak with Animals: This seems to be working as intended and as written. It would be nice if this one gave us a 'recast' option, like speak with dead does. (*Edit: Except, as pointed out, in game it requires concentration, when in fact it should not! There is no reason for this change.)

Druid Spells

Druid has been added, along with a host of new spells. They'll all be placed here, with reference to the other spell lists that also gained access to them.

Druid Cantrips

Produce Flame: Works as written and listed, however the implementation ends up being a bit clunky, creating a secondary 'throw flame' button on your UI.

Thorn Whip: Works as written and listed, thumbs up.

Shillelagh : Mostly working as written and listed; the spell effect is meant to end if you cast it again, but right now it technically does not. You cannot choose to cast shillelagh on your off-hand club, if you also have a club in your main hand, which you should be able to do - but you can switch the weapons and cast it a second time, and have both clubs magical. This isn't necessarily a bad change, but doing it is fiddly; if it's meant to be permissible, it should be easy to do without feeling like you're tinkering, and if not, it should be fixed. The spell lasts for 1 minute, and the casting tooltip shows ten rounds, however, once you cast it there is no actual indication anywhere that you can check, other than looking to see if the weapon is still glowing.

1st Level Spells

Entangle: There are a few problems with entangle. The initial restrain works well enough, however, the spell has gained the effect that it will also restrain creatures that later enter the area; this is because it just uses the exact same vine terrain hazard effect that you can find dotted about the existing game. This isn't necessarily a bad change on its own, however, a creature walking through a vine patch may well be forced to make multiple saves on the way through, for seemingly arbitrary reasons. Perhaps distance travelled, but it's unclear (walking around in a vine patch causes a save about once every 15 feet travelled). The next problem comes in because you are not supposed to get a save out from entangle, that's one of its strong points - you don't get a save out, but instead you must use your action (or someone else must use theirs, most DMs permit) to free yourself. If you walk into the vines, and get entangled, on your turn, you cannot do this. Instead, the game directs us to using the help action, which lets us help an ally out of the entangle condition. The problem here is that you cannot Help yourself - so a lone entangled person cannot attempt to break free on their own. Apparently, in counter to this, actually being entangled and failing the save, only lasts for one round - so whether someone helps you or not, you're enemies are going to be free on their next turn anyway. This hugely devalues the spell.

Goodberry: As written, this spell makes up to 10 berries, which each restore a single hit point, and which serve your food requirements for a whole day. It takes an action to eat a berry. In game, you only make 4 berries, but they heal a d4 each; as with all food items, in game they only take a bonus action to eat. We don't have daily nourishment needs in the video game, which I certainly won't complain about. Otherwise, this seems like a reasonable change, in a game where the berry's main purposes are negated. This spell now also appears on the Wizard list... It really, er, shouldn't be there... and on the Ranger list, which is more appropriate.

2nd Level Spells

Barkskin: the tooltip for barkskin reads as though it lasts for negative one round. In reality, it lasts until your next long rest; this is a sensible, positive change for a video game translation, for spells that have durations in the hours. They changed the wording for the spell, and made it less clear... but otherwise it works as it's meant to and seems to be all correct. Changing armour around, pushing your AC higher than 16, then lowering it again, all presents the correct values; higher when it's higher and never lower than 16.

Enhance Ability: As with Barkskin, the tooltip for each version of this spell implies they last for negative one round. This is another spell that lasts until your next rest once you cast it, provided you don't lose concentration, and as with others that have a duration in the hours, this change makes sense. Cat's Grace has received a slight tweak, and now simply halves all falling damage, as opposed to the spell as written which entirely negates it if it is 20 feet or less (so far it's hard to fall more than 20 feet in this game, unless it's a death drop), so it's a weakening of the effect in the short term, and only becomes a buff from much greater heights. It's also lost the caveat that you need to not be incapacitated, which it really should still retain. this spell now also appears on the Clerc list, as it should be.

Flame Blade: On the surface, this seems to mostly work as written and listed, however, Larian have decided to do this by making the flame blade a physical inventory weapon. It doesn't disappear if you let it go - it's in your inventory. Problem if you're trying to sneak it into a weapon-restricted area... They have managed to keep the inventory lock pretty solid on this - no escaping flame blades that I've so fr found, despite trying... However, in making it a physical weapon, rather than a stand alone spell attack, they've opened up a different exploit - you can equip the flame blade in your off-hand and use a bonus action to deal 3d6 damage each turn, when it's balanced around taking your action. Couple this with a fast-handed rogue, and it'll be particularly bad. This should probably get fixed. WE have the duration problem as well - The spell as written lasts for ten minutes, but the spell in game gives us no indication of this, and there's no way to check or see how long it has left. It seems as though it might have been made to last until your next long rest, but I actually can't tell.

Flaming Sphere: There are whole threads about Flaming Sphere and its problems. Having it act as a summon that occupies your one summon limit is ridiculous. Having it act as a summon that is a tangible 'creature' that enemies can and will target, move to, and attempt to attack is even more ridiculous. Having it roll over to you like a lost puppy and begin enthusiastically immolating your entire party as soon as combat ends, and you the caster with no way of dismissing it, or telling it to stay away (short of controlling it yourself directly for its remaining duration, or forcefully interrupting your concentration in some other way), is beyond ridiculous. As a summon, it also gets to move and attack on its own, and no longer takes up any part of your action economy - also bonkers. For added fun, Wizards also have access to this madness too.

Heat Metal: The tooltip for heat metal in game specifically says a metal weapon; in reality, the spell in game actually functions more in line with the written spell, and the tooltip is incorrect. In game, you can target a suit of metal armour, or a weapon, though if you target a person wearing metal armour and wielding metal weapons, you cannot pick what you heat - it defaults to their main hand weapon. Using your bonus action to apply damage uses the clunky extra button situation, though it does correctly only show up on your next turn, so you can't double up immediately. One issue is that the reapply damage button lists your casting stat as Intelligence; this doesn't ultimately affect anything, but it's still wrong.

Moonbeam: The tooltip for moonbeam reads as it's written in the normal rules; specifically, a creature makes a save if it enters the beam, or if it starts its turn in the beam. This is not how the spell actually works in game. It is another problem of spell timing - characters take the moonbeam's damage when you first cast it, and when you move the beam onto them, neither of which should prompt saves or damage. this menas that you will often get double ups on damage from moonbeam where you shouldn't. Also, characters often seem to take damage twice in the same instant, for no discernible reason. In my test case, I went into force turn based, and cast it on Gale - he immediately failed a save and took 7 damage and 9 damage as separate numbers - that mans he took 2d6, twice, in the moment that I cast the beam. My casting and his 'start of turn' perhaps. Either way, it shouldn't be happening. Another element that has been forgotten or neglected here is that you only take the damage on your turn once. Once. That's important. If you start your turn there, or else the first time you enter the beam on your turn - not every time. As is in game currently, if you move back and forth through a moonbeam, you'll take damage each time. You shouldn't. Once per turn is important to the balance of the spell. As usual, we have a secondary "move moonbeam" button, which acts as its own independent spell, and claims that my casting ability with it is Intelligence. Once again, this is wrong.

Protection from Poison: As with others the tooltip implies that the spell only lasts for negative one round, however upon casting it lasts until your next rest. As with other similar changes, the bump from an hour or a number of hours, to a full rest cycle is one that works well for a video game. Similarly, the spell has been buffed to now remove all poisons, not just a single one. Overall, these are positive changes that are not too strong, but are fitting for a video game translation. Thumbs up. Also added to the cleric list, as expected.

Spike Growth: The tooltip for spike growth lines up with the spell as written, except that its damage has been decreased to 1d4, down from 2d4. No reason for this nerf that I can see. Furthermore, though the spell card says that characters take damage for every 5 feet they move, as the spell is written, in game, you actually only take damage once for every 10 feet that you move. It's difficult terrain, so this means that on a turn using normal movement, in the game currently, you'll take a maximum of 1d4 a round from walking across the spikes. The spell as it is written would mean that for the same 15 feet you move over the spikes, you'd take 6d4. That's a huge, huge difference, and a very large nerf to this spell. For no real perceptible reason - they already took away your ability to surprise enemies with it, since it doesn't have the hidden-if-you-don't-see-it-cast aspect in the game. As with all spells of any real rang,e its range has also been cut in half, against creatures whose movement capabilities have not been.

With patch 6, we now have Sorcerers, and with them a small handful of new spells:

Sorcerer Spells

1st Level Spells

Chromatic Orb: The primary tooltip for Chromatic Orb gives it a range of 60 feet, reduced from the original spell's 90 feet. This means that now, from maximum rang,e your target can move right into melee range with you on their turn, whereas in 5e, at full range, they generally can't. The continual crunching of spell ranges is a low visibility, yet very grievous nerf on spell caters everywhere. Beyond this, the tooltip says that you throw an orb that deals 3d8 elemental damage of your choice at an enemy.

This is immediately shown to be false if you bring up the selection window: Thunder Orb deals 3d8, but literally none of the other options do – they all deal 2d8, and create a surface. For example, the lightning Orb creates a water puddle. That sure makes sense. Display-wise, this spell highlights a problem that many of us foresaw, but Larian have gone ahead with anyway: The selection window has been co-opted to serve as both our choice of spell level, and our selection for the spell itself, which means we pop open a window with six pairs of identical icons, and no way to tell them apart without highlighting each one. Further more, there's no really sense to the order in which they appear. One my screen, for example, they appear in the order: Thunder Lvl2, Thunder Lvl1, Poison Lvl2, Poison Lvl1, Lightning Lvl2, Acid Lvl1, Acid Lvl2, Cold Lvl1, Cold Lvl2, Fire Lvl1, FireLvl2, Lightning Lvl1. There is really no rhyme or reason to it. On Swen's stream, his Chromatic Orb options appeared in a different order. At 9th level, when we have access to 5th level spells, this selection window will have to contain 30 buttons, unless the fix it.

The spell itself also has problems: Chromatic Orb is an attack roll spell, which means it is a precision spell. You are meant to be able to pinpoint your one inch orb of elemental pin at an enemy that's mixed up in the melee of your allies without risking them. If you miss, the spell does nothing, and that's the balance for the high damage for slot level that attack roll spells get to enjoy. Chromatic orb now creates a puddle if you use any element other than thunder, and that puddle means that you will harm and hamper your allies if you attack an enemy that is in melee range with them. The spell cannot effectively be used for its designed purpose any more, which is precise damage of a precise element to a precise target. Not only will your lightning orb make a water puddle and electrocute Lae'zel who is in melee with your enemy, but this extra damage, and more importantly extra status effect, are not given a save to resit or avoid, at all. A minor tap of free guaranteed damage is okay for a levelled attack roll spell – one minor tap – but inflicting a guaranteed debilitating status ailment without offering a save to avoid or resist, and doing so even on a complete miss, is not okay.

2nd Level Spells

Cloud of Daggers: Cloud of Daggers looks pretty nice in game, but I've always been a sucker for spirally swirly effects. The spell tooltip does not state the size of the area it creates, and it should. It looks like it makes a 10 foot circle, while the original spell is a 5 foot cube. It retains its 60 foot range, and as with many spells in BG3 currently has the same double-tap damage problem, just like Moonbeam. It is meant to apply damage when a creature first enters the area, or at the start of a creature's turn if it starts in the area: In specific to this, it does NOT apply damage to targets in the area when you first cast the spell, specifically for this reason.

Crown of Madness: Larian have elected to disregard the existing spell description for Crown of Madness, and write their own in its place. In doing so, they have completely neglected any mention of the fact that this is a charm effect. The spell doesn't say it, the tooltip doesn't say it. They also do not mention anywhere in the spell description that this effect is limited to Humanoids, and the spell cannot be cast on non-humanoid creatures. The tooltip ALSO does not mention that the target can attempt to save out at the end of their turn.

These things ARE both the case in the BG3 version of the spell – it just doesn't TELL you that any of them are. The spell has had its range crunched down from 120 feet to 60 feet, and it now only lasts for 3 rounds, instead of up to 1 minute.

The original spell specifies that the target must make a melee attack before moving, attacking a target that you get to choose. If it cannot do this, then it is allowed to act normally for that turn. The spell description in game does not say that they will be allowed to act normally under any circumstance, and says only that they will attack the nearest creature.

The spells actual behaviour is hard to work out, and the game does not help clarify this. The spell description only says that the target will attack the nearest creature. In my experience so far, this has rarely, if ever, actually happened, but the game does not explain why.

In one particularly telling experiment, A Crowned enemy was standing with a melee weapon out, and in melee range of both my caster, who was concentrating on the spell (thereby, the enemy was charmed by me, and so was not allowed to attack me) and Shadowheart, who had no effects on him. The enemy did not attack Shadowheart, despite her being a valid target in melee range, and instead ran away from both of us, up to Gale, and attacked him instead. It seems like the creature was allowed to act normally, but it's hard to say exactly why.

Enlarge/Reduce: The original spell allows you to cast Enlarge or Reduce on an object that is not being worn or carried. This is not the case in the BG3 version, and only living creatures are applicable targets. The spell description in game does not make any mention of changing the target's size category or weight, but these effects do seem to take place, just as the original spell describes. The other aspects of the spell all appear to be working correctly and read correctly as well. Reducing a companion so they become light enough for you to throw them across a gap works perfectly, and medium creatures can reduce in order to fit through small-sized crawlspaces, such as the back entrance to the kids' hideout in the grove.

That's all for Spells. There were two major issues that were the root of many of the problems, that I said I speak about once the spell lists were done, so, let's get to those:

Spell Save Timing:

In 5e, many spells force the target to make an initial saving throw to avoid their effect. That's the first hurdle that the caster has to pass to stick their spell; it's like an attack spell needing to hit. If the target fails the save, then the caster has succeeded in applying their effect. A good many of these effects limit, hamper or otherwise curtail the target's ability to act, move, or function on their turn, or impairs them in some other way.

Most of these effects, if they are ongoing, allow the target to make a new saving throw at the end of their turn. This means that once the caster has succeeded on sticking their spell, they get the benefit of at least one turn of the enemy being affected – one turn, at least, to get something out of the spell slot they spent; they've already beaten the target's save and succeeded, this is supposed to be the pay off.

In the game currently, however, this doesn't work, because the enemy actually gets its new save at the *Start* of their turn, before anything else. What this means is that in order to get any value at all out of their spell, the caster needs their target to fail not once, but twice in a row, just to get that one turn of effect... they succeeded when they cast the spell, but they could still get literally, absolutely, nothing out of the spell if the enemy passes the second save.

In this condition, why would any caster ever bother with something like that? The value of the spells that rely on saves like these has been terribly hindered because it's so much harder to get anything out of them at all now. This is a major problem that needs to be fixed right away. Spell timing matters, a lot.

Spells involving surfaces have the same issue – by fiddling with the timing of when targets make their saves, or are affected by the surface, they've drastically changed the balance and utility of the spells, in most cases making them either substantially less usable, or else completely broken and over-powered.

Grease is a current example: As written in 5e, Grease triggers a save when it appears, when a creature enters the grease, and if they end their turn in the grease. This means that targets save when you cast it, but on their turn they have an opportunity to pick themselves up and get out of the grease, if they choose to, without fearing the need to save again. It they don't get out of it, then they're exposed to a second save. In the game currently, it triggers a save, and potential slip, when the grease appears, and also if you move within the grease at all. This means that a character that starts their turn in the grease risks a save, and possible knock down (and subsequent loss of their entire turn), if they move at all, and that throws the balance of the spell right off, because they can't reliably get out of the grease without risking a second save.

BG3's programming of when it rolls for saves and save-outs is quite different from the original rules of 5e, and while it might have seemed to the designers as though the change was minor, it actually creates a lot of problems, destroys a lot of balance, and breaks many things. The timing in the rule book exists as it does with good cause, and they should really try to follow it.

Player Choice With Spells:

Many spells allow players to make a choice either when they cast the spell, or in relation to when they use its effect. Most spells of this nature have either been nerfed into the ground to remove all elements of player choice, or they are simply absent from the game.

Right now, the game does not allow for player choice to occur in combat; we cannot choose whether we do or don't want to use our reaction on a particular target, we cannot choose, outside of our turn, which reaction we'd like to use if we have multiple available. We cannot use more than one command, and we cannot deliver spells with our familiars. We don't have a chromatic orb to chose the element of, and we can't choose whether to shove someone prone, or to shove them away. We can't choose not to hellish rebuke the first thing to attack us, whom we know is immune to fire, but still choose *To* rebuke the second thing to attack us, whom we know is not. We can't destroy that water puddle we just made, and we can't enhance our allies abilities in various different ways as needed. We have no Shield to block magic missiles... and heavens help Larian when we come to Paladins, because if they keep on in this vein there is literally no way they are going to handle them acceptably... there are three ways that the current game design philosophy might handle Paladins: They'll either make the smite a separate skill (separate skills for each spell level, no less), which will burn a spell slot even if you miss – That's completely unacceptable. OR they'll make it automatic, and every hit will burn your spell slots away like lightning... Completely unacceptable. OR they might make it a reaction when you hit, but you'll need one for each spell level, and it'll still chew your reaction... also completely unacceptable. The current game design can't handle Paladins, and the whole system needs reworked.

While the lack of player choices in combat affects everyone, spellcasters, and spells with options, or spells with timing options, suffer the worst. All of the important choices about running our characters are by and large out of our hands at the moment, and it's not good.

It seems that they are generally against just asking players what they'd like to do in the middle of things. A quick simply pop window to ask “Would you like to Smite?” Isn't intrusive at all, and it does what the current game is incapable of doing.

Having Hellish Rebuke up is great, but it NEEDS to ask us if we want to use our reaction on this particular enemy... because we may not. We may want to use it on the one coming after them, and only that one... and we can't turn the reaction button on and off outside of our turn.

EDIT: Post updated with new spells and fixed spells.
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 03:46 AM
Fog Cloud isn't the most intuitive spell.

If you move a character inside the fog to hide from ranged attacks, they get gunned down like the fog wasn't there.
Posted By: KillerRabbit Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 05:21 AM
Wow. My new favorite post.

This should absolutely become a sticky. I have one two minor points of difference but I'll put those aside because I don't want to distract from the objectively true fact that you have created the perfect post. Much respect.
Posted By: nizanegusa Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 05:59 AM
nicely put. Thumbs up. smile

sadly this is just the beginning.
you could probably add 50% more of these like:
aid doesn't heal downed pcs
if you walk through grease or web you sometimes have to make multiple saves
fog cloud reduces your jump range
you can target individuals with magic missile what's up with the shitty bless/bane targeting
etc etc
add to that multiple spells per turn and i'm just here tearing my hair out
Posted By: RumRunner151 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 06:14 AM
Nice detailed review! Thanks!
Posted By: EMC_V Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 06:33 AM
I like the review.

Mage hand should also be able to push buttons, some times open doors and throw potions/small bottles. And maybe cut cords of traps to activate remotely.
Posted By: webmaster94 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 06:42 AM
Originally Posted by nizanegusa
nicely put. Thumbs up. smile

sadly this is just the beginning.
you could probably add 50% more of these like:
aid doesn't heal downed pcs
if you walk through grease or web you sometimes have to make multiple saves
fog cloud reduces your jump range
you can target individuals with magic missile what's up with the shitty bless/bane targeting
etc etc
add to that multiple spells per turn and i'm just here tearing my hair out


One correction I would make is Aid absolutely does heal downed targets. It increases maximum and current HP. A downed target has an HP of 0 so any increase would bring it back up.
Posted By: nizanegusa Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 06:59 AM
Originally Posted by webmaster94


One correction I would make is Aid absolutely does heal downed targets. It increases maximum and current HP. A downed target has an HP of 0 so any increase would bring it back up.


last time i tried it didn't work but it has been a while.
if they patched it then great!
Posted By: hypostase Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 07:06 AM
I've not played dnd since a bard was a multi-class, but this post makes a lot of sense to me. I think the rebalancing and approaches suggested would make massive improvements.
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 08:13 AM
I think these deserve to be pointed out here as they are supposed to be a low level Wizard's forte.

Quote
Colour Spray and Sleep: These spells use the die average rather than rolling, and that's okay, in a pinch. The bigger problem is this: In the original rules, Colour Spray will blind 4 goblins on average, and can blind up to 8 on a good roll. In BG3 currently, it might blind 2 goblins, at MOST. Sleep, in the original rules, will sleep 3 goblins on an average roll, while in the game it can sleep 2 goblins at most... and it only gets two goblins because they aren't actually using the die average – at level one – it's 2 points higher, to Allow it to get 2 goblins.... die average would only get 1 goblin in game. This is a large weakening of these spells, as a result of the largely thoughtless changes to monster stats to favour attack rolls, to the detriment of everything else.


HP buff nerfs both. Sleep's duration also seems to be cut down from 10 turns to 1 turn (needs confirmation, didn't use after I realized it drops only 1 goblin)

Color Spray's duration is 1 round in 5e as well. Should be a bit longer to make it useful in the first place?

Also it's curious these spells are unique in that they work without saving throws. If I was to house rule them for a CRPG, I would consider a saving throw for consistency (wisdom for sleep, dexterity for color spray) and a secondary effect like drowsy for sleep (eg. -2 attack and AC for 2 turns) for creatures who are above the HP limit but fail their save or for creatures below the HP limit who make their save.
Posted By: Zzealot Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 08:47 AM
Originally Posted by Niara

Dancing Lights: The ability to control and move the lights is much more limited in the game's translation, but it is acceptable.


I hope this spell will be changed so that you can move the light by spending a bonus action. This is perfectly implemented in Solasta.
Posted By: Drath Malorn Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 09:11 AM
Great feedback overall. And an indicator of how much work is still needed in BG3.

The Magic Missile point is one of my top contenders for Facepalming Champion. They don't feel very magic ...

Also, last time I used it, Bless wasn't good at all. It operates as an AOE, and affects the creatures closest to the centre point. With awful priorities (e.g. some neutrals will be affected ahead of party members). We should be able to target the beneficiaries, the way Magic Missiles allows multi-targets. And that's only part of the problem. But anyway.


On a different note, Spider Climb is one of these spells I so wish Larian finds a way to implement, it sounds so cool.
Posted By: EMC_V Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 10:30 AM
This analysis is amazing. I hope they listen to the feedback because yes, many spells have been nerfed or limited for no good reason.
Posted By: Madscientist Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 10:44 AM
@OP: Thank you, this is great.

One thing about spells with concentration: (I have already written this in the concentration topic):
Spells with concentration are weaker in BG3 than they should be because all kinds of things break concentration.
- prone does, thanks for explaining that prone = incapacitated = uncountious
- Many spells cause surface effects or damage over time when PnP rules say they do not (fire bolt is best example, there are others)
- Not sure about this one: In PnP do you have 3 concentration checks when you do a sneak attack with a fire arrow (weapon damage, fire damage, sneak damage)?
This is just an example for something that has several damage components at once.
Posted By: Dexai Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 10:56 AM
Great post, Niara, I really hope the devs look at this and take it to heart. Especially this:

Originally Posted by Niara

Spell Save Timing:

In 5e, many spells force the target to make an initial saving throw to avoid their effect. That's the first hurdle that the caster has to pass to stick their spell; it's like an attack spell needing to hit. If the target fails the save, then the caster has succeeded in applying their effect. A good many of these effects limit, hamper or otherwise curtail the target's ability to act, move, or function on their turn, or impairs them in some other way.

Most of these effects, if they are ongoing, allow the target to make a new saving throw at the end of their turn. This means that once the caster has succeeded on sticking their spell, they get the benefit of at least one turn of the enemy being affected – one turn, at least, to get something out of the spell slot they spent; they've already beaten the target's save and succeeded, this is supposed to be the pay off.

In the game currently, however, this doesn't work, because the enemy actually gets its new save at the *Start* of their turn, before anything else. What this means is that in order to get any value at all out of their spell, the caster needs their target to fail not once, but twice in a row, just to get that one turn of effect... they succeeded when they cast the spell, but they could still get literally, absolutely, nothing out of the spell if the enemy passes the second save.

In this condition, why would any caster ever bother with something like that? The value of the spells that rely on saves like these has been terribly hindered because it's so much harder to get anything out of them at all now. This is a major problem that needs to be fixed right away. Spell timing matters, a lot.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 12:38 PM
Thanks for the support, all.

To answer your question, Madscientist, the PnP ruling could be considered murky, just by RAW, but only by the most devil's-advocate determined people; it says that you must make a save when you take damage, for each source of damage. The exmaples it gives are an arrow, and a dragon's breath (as being two separate sources of damage). A single shot that has multiple components (such as a rogue attack with a flaming arrow from stealth), is still only one source. Similarly, a spell like Magic Missile, even if all the bolts strike the same caster, still only generates one concentration save for that caster; that one in particular was ruled on by some of the designers in Sage Advice.

You are right; Concentration is taxed a lot more in BG3's rendition of the rules. A lot more than it should be.
Posted By: Leuenherz Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 02:16 PM
Excellent post, agree with almost all of it.

Two notes, though:

1.) Thunderwave is not as purposeless as you assume, the push can propel multiple objects, which can do damage when colliding with creatures or other objects. Someone demonstrated one-shotting the Adult Red Dragon in the Githyanki patrol by using Thunderwave to push a shit ton of objects down from the bridge and on top of it.

2.) Your explanation of how Darkness is supposed to work is actually incorrect. Darkness explicitly mentions that creatures with darkvision cannot see through it, so BOTH attacker and defender are functionally blind when attacking each other, neutralizing any disadvantage and advantage on attack rolls.
Posted By: Dexai Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 05:26 PM
I'd say the spell does a very poor job of clarifying whether it creates darkness -- ie the lack of light; or blackness -- meaning the space is filled up by opaque black colour. They're not really the same.
Posted By: Leuenherz Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 05:59 PM
Originally Posted by Dexai
I'd say the spell does a very poor job of clarifying whether it creates darkness -- ie the lack of light; or blackness -- meaning the space is filled up by opaque black colour. They're not really the same.


I don't have access to Darkness in my current playthrough. Are we talking about the in-game adaptation or the tabletop version here?
Posted By: Dexai Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 06:36 PM
I mean the tabletop version.
Posted By: Leuenherz Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 06:57 PM
Originally Posted by Dexai
I mean the tabletop version.


It seems pretty clear to me. Somewhat ironically it's actually both. The spell description specifies an area of magical darkness (read: absence of light) that cannot be seen through by mundane sight or darkvision (therefore appearing perfectly opaque to creatures using those senses).

You could argue whether the area is a perfect geomatrical object or is more akin to fog with frayed edges I suppose, but apart from that I see no issue with its description.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 10:54 PM
Originally Posted by Leuenherz
Excellent post, agree with almost all of it.

Two notes, though:

1.) Thunderwave is not as purposeless as you assume, the push can propel multiple objects, which can do damage when colliding with creatures or other objects. Someone demonstrated one-shotting the Adult Red Dragon in the Githyanki patrol by using Thunderwave to push a shit ton of objects down from the bridge and on top of it.

2.) Your explanation of how Darkness is supposed to work is actually incorrect. Darkness explicitly mentions that creatures with darkvision cannot see through it, so BOTH attacker and defender are functionally blind when attacking each other, neutralizing any disadvantage and advantage on attack rolls.



Thunderwave is not useless by any means. I only noted that, alongside other mechanics in the game, its value had been decreased in relation...

As for Darkness, I'm sorry, and I don't wish to come across as harsh or aggressive, but you're mistaken; my description is correct, and I am 100% certain of that.

Darkness, the written spell, says that it creates darkness. It notes that it is magical darkness - and specifies, to support that, that creatures with darkvision can't see through it. If it made creatures inside the darkness functionally blind, it would say so. This is a specific-beats-general classification: it is calling out a specific case where the general rule of darkvision in relation to darkness is overruled. Normally, creatures with darkvision would perceive "darkness" as "dim light". For this particular magical darkness, that is not so - it's still darkness to them.

That is what the spell says. For what effect that has on characters, we then have to look at what darkness does, and for that we need the rules on light and shadow. I'll quote them here:

(Italics mine)
Quote
Darkness creates a heavily obscured area. Characters face darkness outdoors at night (even most moonlit nights), within the confines of an unlit dungeon or subterranean vault, or in an area of magical darkness.


Quote
A heavily obscured area - such as darkness, opaque fog, or dense foliage - blocks vision entirely. A creature suffers from the blinded condition (see appendix A) when trying to see something in that area


Also, the wording on the Darkvision trait:

Quote
... You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light.


Note that it is not talking about where you are, or what condition you are in - it's talking about what you're seeing; a space apart from you but still within 60 feet. You can see in that patch of darkness, over there, within 60 feet of you, as though it were not darkness. If you're trying to see a creature that is within 60 feet of you, and that creature is in darkness, you aren't blinded against that creature - you can see it as though it were in dim light. That's how the trait works.

The Darkness spell specifically calls out its overruling of the darkvision trait, to say that even creatures with darkvision are still functionally blind when trying to see a creature within this particular magical darkness, even if the thing they are trying to see is within 60 feet of them.

These are all of the relevant rules for 5e, and they're consistent with the way light and shadow generally, actually, works. Darkness and light are not - and are never - about where you, the eyes looking, are. They are always about what you are trying to see. If what you are trying to see is not in an area that is heavily obscured, then it doesn't matter if you are... and if it did it would make hiding in ambush impossible.

Can you imagine the ranger attempting to ambush his foe from a dense patch of foliage... only to be told by the DM, that he has disadvantage because he is in an area that is heavily obscured? That's not how it works. Of course he's in an area that is heavily obscured - he's hiding from his foe and doesn't want to be seen! His foe is not in an area that is heavily obscured, so the ranger does not have disadvantage attacking them... the ranger has advantage, because he is an unseen attacker. The enemy, meanwhile, will have disadvantage to attack the ranger because they are trying to see the ranger, who is in an area that is heavily obscured.

((Edit: though I will concede, that it seems like the greater majority of people and players (at least in internet threads) all run darkness incorrectly... and that it is run and ruled incorrectly more often than it is run as written and intended... So please don't take any of this as an attack))
Posted By: Dexai Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 10:54 PM
But you can see through darkness (as in absence of light). You just can't see what's in the darkness. But you can easily see what's on the other side of the darkness. I believe this was Niara was getting at before.
Posted By: Leuenherz Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/20 11:24 PM
Originally Posted by Niara
snip


Let me assure you that you do not come across as harsh or offensive at all, but I appreciate your concern.

However, I still find myself disagreeing with you. Here is why.

Darkness (as in, the spell) explicitly prevents seeing *through* it, not merely into it. So if you're standing inside of the spell's area, your eyes cannot pierce the darkness with mundane sight or darkvision, it is effectively opaque.

From a real world perspective, this makes perfect sense as well. Yes, you can see something that is in light even if you yourself are standing in perfect darkness, but this works because the light reflected off the illuminated object is reaching your eyes. Mundane light explicitly does not work inside the Darkness spell.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/11/20 01:51 AM
I appreciate that; I'm not interested in 'being right' - I'm only interested in having an accurate understanding for myself, and after that, sharing it with others. If anyone has anything compelling to offer or add that shows me to be in error, then I do absolutely want to know about it. However...

((Spoiler tagging in depth discussions to preserve thread clarity for those less interested))



Originally Posted by Leuenherz


Darkness (as in, the spell) explicitly prevents seeing *through* it, not merely into it.


If you wish to take that interpretation, then you are forced to say that creatures without darkvision CAN see through it... since the sentence only explicitly references creatures with darkvision. That makes very little sense and is obviously not a correct interpretation. If you want to say that creatures without darkvision also can't see through it, then you are making a logical jump - an assumption, or extrapolation, which invalidates any ruling you arrive at after that point; 5e philosophy is based around two basic precepts: "The rules do what they say, and not what they don't say" and "Specific beats general". This leaves no room for extrapolation or logical assumption, except as house rules.

That sentence in the spell is specifically calling out a "specific-beats-general" overruling of the darkvision trait... that is ALL it is doing. It doesn't reference creatures without darkvision, because it does not change the general rule for them in relation to darkness.

No part of the spell says that light cannot pierce it; it says that light cannot illuminate it. These are different things. If light could not pierce the spell, it would say so. That light cannot illuminate the spell area simply means that if an area of dim or bright light overlaps with the spell's area, it fails to illuminate that area - it remains dark. That is all it means.

The darkness is magical, yes; the spell then defines the ways in which it is magical. Those are the only ways in which it differs from mundane darkness. If it differed in any other way, the spell would say so.

The only way in which the magical darkness differs from mundane darkness are spelled out in the spell: creatures with darkvision still treat seeing into the area as full darkness, and mundane light, as well as magical light level 2 and below, cannot illuminate the space that it covers - it remains darkness, and overrules such attempts at illumination. Those are the only ways in which it differs from regular mundane darkness. If it differed in any other way, the spell would say so.

Quote
So if you're standing inside of the spell's area, your eyes cannot pierce the darkness with mundane sight or darkvision, it is effectively opaque.


This is untrue. Nowhere in the spell, or in the rules for light and darkness, is this said. If it created a magically opaque space, it would say so. It does not. If the blind condition came into the ruling of the spell in any way beyond the normal rules for light and shadow, it would say so. It does not. You are extrapolating to the idea that you can't see out of it; that is not part of the spell or the rules for light and darkness. That makes it a house rule of yours. As I pointed out previously, vision and targeting in 5e is always about what you are trying to see, not where you are looking from. The rules regarding darkness and vision support this: they explicitly call out the difficulty it causes when trying to see a creature that is IN a heavily obscured area... and explicitly do NOT say anything about impairment when attacking out of heavily obscured areas, such as magical darkness, which is used as an example along with dense foliage (If you were impaired when trying to attack out of a heavily obscured area, then ambushing anyone, ever, would be impossible).

Darkness itself has a recorded effect: it is heavily obscured, which is defined with the effect that creatures are considered blind for attacks they make when trying to target a creature within that area. A creature outside the darkness trying to a target a creature inside the darkness, then, is considered blind for the purposes of attacking that target. Two creatures within the magical darkness trying to attack each other are both unseen attackers by the other (due to being in a heavily obscured area), and blind in terms of trying to attack each other (trying to target a creature that is in a heavily obscured area), so they both go to straight rolls. A creature inside the darkness trying to attack a creature on the outside, that is not in a heavily obscured area is not impeded; if they were, the rules would say so. They do not.

The rules do what they say, and not what they don't. Anything else is house-ruling. Which is fine, incidentally; what matters is that your table agrees with the interpretations and that your table is having fun... But I'd prefer to see video game interpretations using the written rules.

IF darkness behaved as you're implying (and, I concede, as a very large number of people do seem to erroneously interpret it), then there functionally is no way to use the spell without always shooting yourself in the foot. It would be *especially* useless for drow, who have historically used the spell as part of their assassination tactics and politics. Do you feel that that is the intention? If it effectively renders anyone interacting with it in any way, in or out, from within or without, blind, then the spell would be a very stupid and ridiculous spell, and wouldn't ever really serve to benefit the user (with the solitary exception of devil's sight warlocks.... and then only by virtue of allowing them and only them to ignore its effects). Do you actually believe that that is how the spell is supposed to work? That someone would write the spell with the design intention of doing that?


((Last minute edit: As an extra example to back up my point about the way spells and rules do what they say and not what they don't, compare Darkness to Hunger of Hadar: Hunger says "[...] No light, magical or otherwise, can illuminate the area, and creatures fully within the area are blinded." Hunger explicitly notes that creatures within its darkness are blinded. Darkness does not. If a creature within the darkness created by Darkness was blinded by being in it, the spell would say so.))
Posted By: Leuenherz Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/11/20 03:26 AM
Originally Posted by Niara
*snip*


That is a very laudable attitude to take. I appreciate your stance on the matter. smile

As to the actual subject of discussion:

I think you do my argument a disservice in calling it an "assumption" (not taking it personally, just pointing it out). If darkvision cannot penetrate this darkness, then obviously mundane sight cannot either, as the latter is in every way inferior to the former. It is a matter of common sense. Not to imply you don't possess common sense, just that you don't seem to view its application as necessary here, because the rules already provide complete information in your eyes. But as I say it, darkvision is not a completely separate sense like blindsight or tremorsense. You cannot logically make the argument that mundane sight can see something where darkvision cannot, solely because WotC failed to provide wording for it. Nor do I think you can disregard wording that *is* there because of it.

I think what we have here is a conflict of RAW vs RAI. From your explanations so far, I can tell that we lean towards different ends of the spectrum. Filling in the gaps that incomplete wording leaves is not the same as actively changing how a rule works (as in: a houserule).

The comment regarding illumination inside the spell was meant to briefly touch upon your arguments regarding the rules reflecting how sight operates in reality. I already dread the side debate on the exact workings of the eye, but to my limited understanding if light does not illuminate anything (therefore is not visible to the eye), it will cause no reaction in the retinas and you therefore cannot see.

We run into a similar issue here. You say the rules do not explicitly say something and therefore it cannot be the case. Whereas I say we have the necessary information to fill in the gaps. If the eye cannot perceive the reflected light, then it only logically follows that it cannot see anything that light was reflected off of. To me, that is not an assumption, it's like solving for a variable in a mathematical equation.

Also, I want to point out when I say something is "effectively" blinded/opaque, I simply want to express there is no functional mechanical difference, despite the term itself not being used in the wording I am referring to.

Somewhat ironically (after everything I said about RAW vs RAI before), we come to the part where you bring up the design intent of Darkness. And yes, straight up, the spell is bad. It is a glorified fog cloud, with a smaller radius, different conditions for its removal and the option to cast it on an object and carry it around. It does not work for Drow as it did in older editions anymore, nor does its then tried-and-true combination with faerie fire. The combination with senses that can perceive through it (such as the devil's sight example you brought up) is its main valid use in a combat scenario. You can also block line-of-sight with it, which can be useful against enemy casters or neutralize existing advantage/disadvantage on the battlefield, but apart from that...

As for how WotC arrived at its current iteration and why, who knows? But I think we can both agree that it is not the only spell that is not worth taking due to lackluster design (unless we are talking certain niche applications).

Finally, I think this debate about rule wording and interpretation might detract a little from the actual point of the thread - or at the very least clutter it. If you like, we can continue this exchange over PM. If you think our viewpoints are too fundamentally incompatible to continue, we can also drop it here.

In any case, I very much appreciate the civility so far, despite our disagreements.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/11/20 06:03 AM
Certainly, I'll message you on the matter; you're right that continuing to discuss it here clutters up the thread.
Posted By: Madscientist Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/11/20 10:00 AM
My 2 cents on darkness:
The spell creates an area where no one can see through, not even with darkvision.
I would interpret this as: Somebody outside the area can only see a dark area but not whats inside.
Somebody inside the area is blind.

How to use this:
- Somebody in the area can get one step out, attack or cast a spell and move back in so somebody outside does not know where the person inside is going (maybe leaving the area in a direction the person outside cannot see.
- A char outside could use an AoE effect at the dark area and hope that the other char is hiding inside and is blind. He cannot target a char or object in the area
- The purpose of the spell is to protect the caster from ranged attacks/spells that target an individual char or to allow the caster to escape unseen.
- The char outside can go inside to attack the caster. In this case a blind char is trying to attack another blind char in total darkness. Maybe one of them has an advantage when he can hear or smell the other one.

The example with a ranger ambushing somebody from a hidden position is something different.
The ranger is in a strongly obscured area but not in an area of magic darkness.

This is just my interpretation of the text. I am not a PnP or DnD expert.
Posted By: Mat22 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/11/20 04:50 PM
Good points there. Yes please allow Mage Hand to open chests, pull levers, push buttons, open doors etc. its a utility spell i have many good memories about, i dont mind if there is a special tadpole or psionic version which can shove (attack) but base Mage Hand i would prefer as a utility cantrip
Posted By: Dexai Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/11/20 05:10 PM
Bigby's Big Hand or whatever it is called is specifically about grabbing and pushing people, isn't it?
Posted By: jayn23 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/11/20 06:31 PM
Love this thread, if Larian fixed all the spells based on this thread and nothing else from 5e mechanics it would still go a long way in making the game more fun and balanced.
Posted By: Ankou Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 02/12/20 06:22 PM
Aren't all spells nerfed due to the health bloat that isn't fixed even in the latest patch? Wizards feel worse than ever.
Posted By: SandersonTavares Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 02/12/20 10:07 PM
I mean no ill here, but OP's interpretation of darkness is wrong, and that is out of question given wording from lead rules designer Jeremy Crawford on multiple occasions.

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2016/05/14/if-a-creature-inside-a-darkness-spell-throws-a-ranged-attack/
https://www.sageadvice.eu/2016/03/11/cloud-of-darkness-advantage-and-disadvantage/


Darkness, much like Fog Cloud, is used to equalize situations. There are many situations where an enemy would have advantage against you (maybe you're facing a Berserker with the Reckless Feature, or an enemy with Foresight). In those situations, you cast darkness and equalize the field. Since advantage and disadvantage cancel out, you screw them over. And you also prevent a bunch of spells from being cast inside the area.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 03/12/20 12:24 AM
Those tweets are from the very earliest days of 5e, when it was still finding its feet and are, like a great many tweets and rulings from those days, not generally considered relevant or accurate.

Aside from that, Crawford's sage advice tweets are not considered official rulings and have been declared formally against being taken as such, for precisely the reason that whenever he gives out an answer that says more than just referencing the relevant rule verbatim, he often adjudicates it incorrectly or unclearly.

As with all things, players and DMs are free to houserule things in whatever way feels like it makes the most sense or is the most fun for them, however, by RAW, my description is 100% accurate, and I would move strongly that it is correct RAI as well, given the way in which the spell has historically been used within the realms lore (most markedly by drow assassins).
Posted By: Firesnakearies Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 04/12/20 11:04 AM
I don't think you're correct, Niara. I don't care what Jeremy Crawford may or may not have said, it's plain (to me) by a simple reading of the text of Darkness what it does. It's total darkness that no light can illuminate within, and even Darkvision cannot penetrate it. Only creatures with some special ability to specifically counteract magical Darkness can see into, out of, or through it. This is why devils in 5e have the Devil's Sight ability specifically on their stat block, which says "Magical Darkness doesn't impede the devil's Darkvision." Which means that anyone else who doesn't have that ability cannot see, even with Darkvision. Note that when you look up drow in the Monster Manual (or the PHB), they have NO such ability listed.

In addition, the spell description itself says nothing about "the caster can see through this", and it definitely WOULD say that if that was the case. When a spell affects an area, but DOESN'T affect the caster or some other person in the area, the spell description always calls that out. It doesn't say that in the description of the drow race where it mentions them having the ability to cast Darkness, either. Literally nowhere does it say that drow or anyone else (except things with Devil's Sight or Truesight) can see through it.

Now, I agree that it shouldn't make it impossible to make attacks into or out of it. They should just do so as if blind, whether they are the caster or not.

As for realmslore, I've read the Drizzt books, and I remember him using his Darkness ability numerous times, as well as other drow characters using it. And it never says that any of them can SEE through the magical darkness. In fact, it talks about how they are highly trained blind-fighters (and part of Drizzt's training was in blind-fighting specifically for that reason!), and that's why it gives them an advantage. One of the main reasons they use it, also, is as a specific counter to light spells and the like. Or they use it just to block line of sight to set up other sneaky tactics, or blind a group of enemies (to prevent their ranged attacks, or perhaps force them to move out of an advantaged position), or just to hide themselves in. (Or in clever ways like using it just around the heads of giants and such, so that the giants are blind but they can still be seen by those on the ground.) It has plenty of utility, even if the caster can't see through it.

Obviously, it has the MOST utility when paired with Devil's Sight, which is why rogue/warlock is such a great multiclass. If anyone could see through magical Darkness, Devil's Sight and Truesight would have no purpose. I think maybe you have this idea in your head from some other source, sometime in the past, and you're reading that into the spell description when it isn't there. I've done that sometimes, heck most D&D players I've known have done that from time to time.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/12/20 02:34 AM
This is the last post I'll make regarding this topic, because, as mentioned, I think it detracts or derails from the focus of this thread.
I have no ill will towards anyone partaking in the discussion, and I don't want to come across as brash or argumentative; that's not my goal.

Spoiler tagged for those not interested.



Precepts of 5e style are that spells do what they say, and don't do things that they don't say.
Precepts for 5e rules are that specific rules beat general rules, and that were nothing is mentioned the general rule applies.

The current, most up to date listings we have read like this:

Darkness: "Darkness creates a heavily obscured area. Characters face darkness outdoors at night (even most moonlit nights), within the confines of an unlit dungeon or a subterranean vault, or in an area of magical darkness."

Darkvision: "Many creatures in fantasy gaming worlds, especially those that dwell underground, have darkvision. Within a specified range, a creature with darkvision can see in darkness as if the darkness were dim light, so areas of darkness are only lightly obscured as far as that creature is concerned. However, the creature can't discern color in darkness, only shades of gray."

Lightly Obscured and Heavily Obscured: "A given area might be lightly or heavily obscured.
In a lightly obscured area, such as dim light, patchy fog, or moderate foliage, creatures have disadvantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on sight.

A heavily obscured area--such as darkness, opaque fog, or dense foliage--blocks vision entirely. A creature effectively suffers from the blinded condition when trying to see something in that area."

Darkness (Spell): "Magical darkness spreads from a point you choose within range to fill a 15-foot-radius sphere for the duration. The darkness spreads around corners. A creature with darkvision can't see through this darkness, and nonmagical light can't illuminate it. [...] "

I'll reference these where appropriate.


The sentence in the spell says that creatures with darkvision cannot see through the darkness. This is worded this way because it means something very specific - and it doesn't mean or imply anything outside of that. This is a matter of 5e style. Things being worded in a particular ways are specific, and they mean specific things, even if we as english-speakers might normally use different language to express a similar point.

It says "creatures with darkvision cannot see through this darkness". The question I'd like you to think about, in this situation is, why does it not say "Creatures cannot see through this darkness" Or "Creatures that rely on sight cannot see through this darkness".

The reason here is that this sentence is Only applying, Specifically to creatures with the darkvision trait. This sentence applies, expressly, and absolutely, to No One Else.

What, then, does it mean? What could it mean that would apply all and only to creatures with the darkvision trait, and not all creatures, or all creatures who rely on sight? It means, and can Only mean, that the sentence is making a 'specific' ruling in relation to the functioning of the darkvision trait, to overrule the 'general' ruling for darkvision.

Normally, the 'General' rule in question here, is that characters with the darkvision trait can, if trying to see something in an area of darkness that exists within their darkvision radius, can see it as though it were in dim light, rather than darkness; this equates to lightly obscured, instead of heavily obscured.

The specific rule that the spell is making with that sentence is applying to that trait - it is saying that if a creature with darkvision is trying to see something in the darkness created by this spell, they still have to treat it as darkness, not as dim light, even if it is inside their darkvision range.

The intent here is clear: It is saying all and only that the feature of darkvision that allows a creature with it to treat darkness as dim light does not work on the darkness created by the spell, and as a result, even a creature with darkvision is effectively blind when trying to see something within the area of darkness.

In layman's terms, what this sentence says, specifically, is "If you have darkvision, it doesn't work for this darkness". That's all it's saying - it is saying nothing else.

Indeed, to say that creatures with darkvision are impaired here, but creatures with normal vision aren't would be absurd. If you want to say that that sentence implies actual impairment for creatures with darkvision, beyond simply not having their darkvision function, then that is the absurd conclusion you are necessarily arriving at - because the sentence only mentions creatures with darkvision, and mentions them specifically, to the exclusion of any more general grouping or category. Since that conclusion is, indeed, absurd... the only recourse is to realise that the sentence is not, and cannot be, implying any kind of impairment beyond the darkvision trait itself not functioning.

To say that that one sentence is ruling multiple things, and that saying "a creature with darkvision" is also intending to actively imply detriment to all sight-using creatures, including those without darkvision, feels deeply disingenuous to me: if that was what they wanted to say, this is, very obviously, not how they would say it... it's a very odd way of saying that the area "is opaque to creatures that rely on sight"... because that is what it would be meaning if it worked as you've said, and that is how it would be worded if it meant that; we have precedent for it.

Light penetrates heavily obscured areas just fine. There are a couple of cases where it doesn't, and those are explicitly called out. There is a difference between light passing through or penetrating an area, and light illuminating it.

"Light does not illuminate the area": this means a very specific thing, and it does not mean anything outside of that, not matter how rational it seems to you: it means that light cannot turn the area of darkness into dim light or bright light. A torch illuminates and area around it – bright light for a distance, and then dim light for a further distance beyond that. It cannot illuminate this darkness, even if it is brought into that range: it is darkness, and it remains darkness. This doesn't mean that it is opaque - again, if it did, it would say so. It means that it is darkness, nothing more, nothing less. Light passes through darkness just fine - that's just the laws of physics. It is a different thing entirely to suppose that an area of darkness is illuminated by light, or brightened up by it.

Light passing through darkness is what allows us to see the distant torch of a friend 200 feet away, while that friend cannot see us in the dark. Their light illuminates the darkness in a radius around them, but the light itself passes through and travels much further, allowing things in the darkness to see it. This magical darkness cannot be illuminated by natural light. The spell does not say anything about it magically preventing light from passing through it. If it did, the spell would say so.

If the spell was opaque, and prevent light from passing through it at all, that would have a significant impact on the spell - so you can rest absolutely assured that if the spell did that, it would absolutely, one hundred percent, say that it did. The fact that it does not is itself a ruling. As it is, it is just darkness, with a couple of explicitly defined magical features; the spell marks it as magical, and then explicitly defines the ways in which it is magical and differs from mundane darkness... but it is just darkness, beyond those very specific things. Light passes through darkness perfectly well without illuminating the dark space. We wouldn't be able to see the stars if it didn't. It doesn't illuminate the space in between - but we can see through the darkness to the stars that are illuminated. There is no corridor of illumination between us and them - just unilluminted darkness, through which light passes.

Presuming that the spell is opaque and prevents light passing through is, in fact, a massive, massive assumption, considering the impact on the function of the spell that such a detail would have. If it did that, the spell would definitely say so.

We have an example of a spell (Hunger of Hadar) that creates darkness that is opaque and does block light from penetrating or escaping: the spell says that it is and does. The spell also extends the blinded condition to any creature within its area – it explicitly calls out the fact that it does so.

Pointedly, Darkness does not say those things, and does not extend that condition, by its own wording. So I would question, given that we have an example of a spell that does this, and calls it out specifically, and we have an example of a spell that does not say these things and does not mention them, why do you feel that it is a valid interpretation to just go ahead and pile those details onto the spell that does not say it?

Saying that the Darkness spell is opaque and doesn't allow light to pass through it - saying that creatures inside the area of the spell are blinded - would be the same as saying that Scorching Ray ignites flammable objects... because burning hands does, so obviously scorching ray does too... despite the fact that burning hands explicitly notes that it ignites things, while scorching ray equally explicitly does not say that. The reality is that one spell ignites flammable objects and the other does not. We can rationalise or explain that however we like - the rule is clear. The same is true of Darkness: it does what it says it does. It does not do anything else.

There are effects that create opaque spaces, and effects that create heavily obscured spaces which inflict Blindness on any target within them. Those are something that we have, and which the game rules define. This is the proof that, when such tangible, game mechanical effects occur, the game notes them. We have that benchmark presented to us; in this case, then, if that note isn't given, then it's not intended to occur - if it was, it would say, and we have evidence proof to show that that is, indeed, the case - because there are places where it specifically does note it and call it out. To apply those riding effects and mechanics to spells and abilities that do not state them - when we have evidence of spells and abilities which Do state them to compare to, is absolutely house-ruling, and is absolutely not following the design intent of the spells you are modifying.

When something IS opaque, the game rules call it out: Tiny Hut, Wall of Fire and Arcane Gate, for some examples. Interestingly, Wall of Ice, the player spell is NOT opaque, while the ice devil summon wall of ice IS opaque - this is a difference that is called out specifically. Darkness does Not call this out. It is Not opaque. If it were, it would be mentioned. We have evidence that, if it were it would be mentioned, because other spells mention this detail where it occurs. You can rule that Darkness is opaque, but that is a house-rule that you are making, and it is not in line with the base ruling for the spell.

When an area inflicts the Blind condition on creatures within it, the game rules call it out: Hunger of Hadar is the best example already cited here. Wall of Sand is another. Darkness does Not call this out. It does Not inflict Blinded on creatures within it. If it did, it would be mentioned. We have evidence that, if it were it would be mentioned, because other spells mention this detail where it occurs. You can rule that darkness inflicts Blinded on creatures within it, but that is a house-rule that you are making, and it is not in line with the base ruling for the spell.

It is not common sense, that the spell does these things: if it did these things it would say so. It doesn't logically follow that the spell does these things: if it did, it would say so, just as we have other spells that say so.

Perhaps a person cannot logically see how a single character can make ten melee attacks in 6 seconds, moving ten feet between each one... so they say that, by common sense, you can only make a maximum of 4 attacks, even if you have other extending features. Someone can do that - but they most certainly cannot claim to be following the rules, and just applying common sense.

You don't need to dip into grey space of uncertainty for something like Darkness, because all the features of it are quite sufficiently defined. Each of the other effects that you and others have wanted to ascribe to the spell, which it does not say, are all things that other spells do, explicitly, call out and notify of when they occur. Pointedly, Darkness does not do those things.

Tiny Hut does not spontaneously generate food and water for the party "Because logically, food and water are required for a comfortable living condition as the spell says it creates"; no, if it did that, it would say it did that.

Darkness is not opaque; darkness does not inflict the blinded condition on targets inside it. There is nothing in the spell that suggests it does these things, at all. It's pure house-rule to suppose that it does.

==

What it is, is 'darkness', which cannot be illuminated (Changed from darkness into dim or bright light) by anything short of stronger magic, and for which mundane senses, such as darkvision, do not function. It can also be moved around by being anchored to an object. Beyond that it is JUST darkness – no different from regular darkness except in those very specific ways which the spell defines.

Regular darkness is a “Heavily Obscured” area, the general rules for which are clear. It is functionally, for mechanical purposes, identical to dense foliage, to use the example cited by the rules.

Targeting in 5e is always about what you are trying to see, never about where you are. Read it above; you are treated as blind when trying to see something that is in a heavily obscured area. It makes no mention of where you are. It's about what you are trying to see.

If you are a ranger, hiding in a patch of dense foliage beside a path, aiming to ambush a merchant, you are in an area that is heavily obscured: the Merchant cannot see You. The merchant is in the open and brightly lit. You can see the Merchant just fine... If this were not the case, you couldn't ambush them at all, ever. If being in an area that was heavily obscured impaired you from targeting out of it, there would never be any ambushes... the ranger would be at disadvantage to attack the merchant because of their own hiding spot (though if they were also unseen, they'd cancel it out, of course). This is ridiculous and obviously not the case.

If you are in darkness, you are in an area that is heavily obscured; creatures are functionally blind when trying to see you. You are not, yourself, blind. If your target is Not in an area that is heavily obscured, and is, in fact, well lit, then you do not have any impairment to attacking them. If you are indeed unseen by them, then you'll have advantage.

If your target is also in the dark, and you are both in darkness together, then you are both trying to see a creature that is in an area that is heavily obscured – you would both have disadvantage; you would also both be unseen by the other, and so it would cancel out to straight rolls. This is only if you're both in the darkness, however. If your target is not heavily obscured, and you are – such as the ranger in the bush and the merchant, then the obscured creature will have advantage to attack the unobscured creature, while the unobscured creature will be blind against the obscured creature. This is straight up just how light, darkness, lightly obscured and heavily obscured work in this rule set, printed in black and white (or black and tan, if you're looking at the phb).


You're right in that the spell does not say that the caster would not be affected; the caster absolutely is affected! There's no reason to suppose they wouldn't be, and if they were excluded the spell would certainly say so. There's also no reason to presume any of the things that people commonly presume, which the spell does not say; it's not opaque, it doesn't inflict blinded, and aside from creatures with darkvision not being able to treat the darkness as dim light, and it not being able to be illuminated (that is, turned from darkness into dim light or bright light) by regular light sources or lower level magic, it is just regular, normal darkness, and thereby follows all the rules of regular normal darkness, except where explicitly called out otherwise. Specific beats general. Spells do what they say and don't do things they don't say. Being in regular, normal darkness does not impair you in any way from attacking a creature that is not in darkness... or else sneak attacks from the shadows would not be a thing.


As I said, this is the last post I will make to this discussion; people are free to make their own house rulings or interpretations of things as they like, and are free, for whatever reason, to marry themselves to interpretations of a spell that heavily nerf it, and then bemoan its limited utility, if they want to. As long as players and DMs agree on the interpretation or ruling they're using, and everyone is having fun, that's all that matters in the end.

I'm well aware that the vast majority of players and DMs rule this incorrectly. I'm not expecting to change anyone's mind, and I'm not strongly interested in 'being right' – so much as I'm interested in having a clear and accurate understanding myself (I'm confident that I do, and nothing suggested by others has shown me any way in which I'm in error; if anyone does have something to show that does so, I most certainly do want to see it, and improve my own grasp of things), and then helping to share that understanding to others. The ultimate truth is that this is one of those cases where 'majority rule' is likely to win out regardless of the facts. The same has happened for a number of other spells, especially in adventure league rules – spells interpreted or run incorrectly by the vast majority, and then banned from use as a result. It happens.

I have done my best to illustrate what is accurate and correct here; how anyone else takes that is up to them. I cannot realistically do any more than this, and so I won't comment back to this discussion branch any further (not in thread anyway, I try to be good about PMs). I'm hoping that this is implemented correctly in the game; I don't have much confidence that it will be, because of the majority belief, but I'm hoping that by pointing to the relevant details and rules, it might be. Peace; I've no ill will or aggressive intention, and I don't want to come across as argumentative.
Posted By: Firesnakearies Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/12/20 10:49 AM
It's fine with me if you don't reply to this, Niara. I'm perfectly happy with having the last word.

I know I won't change your mind. Nothing will change your mind. I could bring the entire staff of Wizards of the Coast in here AND the ghost of Gary Gygax, and they wouldn't change your mind. As you said yourself, you are "100% certain". I find that to be a very dangerous mindset, total certainty. Even scientists aren't "100% certain" about things that have, by and large, been proven. That's the way that zealots think. When one is "100% certain", they no longer really listen to conflicting evidence, they just automatically discount it as soon as they hear it, because it conflicts with that which they have already decided is an absolute fact. So I'm not trying to change your mind.

As I've said before, I appreciate your posts. I admire your thoughtfulness, your articulateness, and your attention to detail. You're one of my favorite posters on these forums. But I think you've just clamped down your jaw on this one and chosen a hill to die on, and the TONE of how you've dismissed those who disagree is sticking in my craw a little bit. "Oh, it's FINE if people want to HOUSE RULE things." "Oh, I recognize that most people are doing it WRONG, but *I* like to play by the RULES." It comes across as smug and condescending to me, so I'm not content to let it go.


The problem with a hyperliteral reading of RPG rules, where only what it says is true, and what it doesn't say isn't true, and what it says is absolutely true in the most specific way, and you can't make any logical leaps, is that it very quickly leads to absurd situations. Every set of complex rules has its little loopholes and contradictions, those of D&D definitely being no exception. When we find a conflict within D&D rules, we have to come up with an interpretation that resolves that conflict, in the way that we think best represents "design intent", as you said.

Here are some problems with your hyperliteral take on Darkness:

First of all, you're using the literal interpretation selectively. This is the most common tactic of rules lawyers. They take one sentence, or one part of a sentence, and apply it with exacting literalness, while conveniently ignoring some other sentence which can be interpreted more loosely or mitigated in some way by a less literal reading.

Darkness only does what it says it does, you say, and it doesn't say it's opaque, it doesn't say it blocks line of sight. True, it doesn't say that, but it doesn't have to, because the rules elsewhere already do.

To quote one of the rules YOU quoted: "A heavily obscured area--such as darkness, opaque fog, or dense foliage--blocks vision entirely. A creature effectively suffers from the blinded condition when trying to see something in that area."

A heavily obscured area--such as darkness, opaque fog, or dense foliage--blocks vision entirely.

blocks vision entirely

blocks

Interesting that we didn't take THIS super literally. Now I suspect that your argument, if you were going to reply to this, which you aren't, is that the second sentence in the rules quote, and specifically the "see something IN that area" part of it, partially invalidates the broadness of the first sentence. But it doesn't necessarily do so. It's just one particular way to interpret the meaning of those two sentences. It is a completely separate sentence. It is asserting a new, different thing. It is giving an additional, specific context. But it does not AUTOMATICALLY reduce the meaning of the first sentence.

If I say: "I like fruit. I like apples." that does not automatically mean that apples are the only kind of fruit that I like. Maybe that's just an example of a fruit that I like, among others. Maybe I especially like apples, but still also like other fruit, as I declared in my first sentence.

So, "blocks vision entirely" is pretty darn unequivocal. Block means to prevent something from entering or passing through. Therefore, by a hyperliteral reading of the rule, a heavily obscured area prevents any sight from entering or passing through it. But we'll come back to this one.


Another problem with the hyperliteral interpretation of Darkness is that it creates a clearly ridiculous scenario. Darkness says "a creature with darkvision can't see through this darkness". NOT "darkvision can't see through this darkness". Just a CREATURE with darkvision. And not "can't see inside this darkness", but "THROUGH this darkness". This leads to hilarity.

So what this means is, if you have a human standing on one side of a Darkness effect, and an elf standing on the other, the human can see THROUGH the Darkness spell clearly to the elf on the other side, but the elf can't see through to the human. That's especially hilarious when we realize that this rule prevents DROW from seeing through it, too.

Oh but wait! Maybe the poor elf is a Warlock, and they have Devil's Sight! NOW they can see through to the human, right? NOPE. "You can see normally in Darkness, both magical and nonmagical, to a distance of 120 feet." IN Darkness. IN. Not through. So the Devil's Sight elf is ALSO screwed. (Unless they stand INSIDE the Darkness spell, then they're good. But no seeing through from the other side!) Rules As Written, sorry.

Now, does this seem like "design intent"? Darkness, what a great spell for humans to cast! Terrible for elves, though. Even more glaringly so for drow, who have it as a racial ability. Oh Lolth, you got jokes.

You can't really come back with "oh you can't take THAT PART so literally" though, as you've already painted yourself into a corner by typing 1,000 words on just how literally we have to take the Rules As Written.


You've also chosen a specific, limiting definition of "illuminate". Technically, if any light enters the Darkness effect at all, even if only for the incredibly brief moment of passing through at the speed of light, it is, to at least a VERY SMALL degree, illuminating the space through which it travels. That space being within the Darkness. Which is literally disallowed by "nonmagical light can't illuminate it" in the rules. Sorry, hard reading of RAW means not one single photon is getting in there. So no seeing through for anyone. Take that, you almost Darkness-seeing-through overpowered humans!


Of course, the previously-mentioned hyperliteral interpretation of the heavily obscured area rule also breaks reason and sense. Because if it "blocks vision entirely", which RAW says it does, then how are we able to see a distant torch, or the stars? We know that can't be right, right?


These outcomes of literally following the RAW are patently absurd, and thus a reasonable person can conclude that they couldn't possibly be what the designers intended. What we have here is a rules CONFLICT. A conflict created by taking the words on the page TOO literally, and NOT making necessary "logical leaps". What can we do when we have such a conflict? How do we decide how to resolve it?

Well, fortunately, we now have the Internet. We can go and see what other people have to say about it, and try to suss out a good interpretation based on public acclamation. You've admitted that many people are ruling Darkness "wrong", but that kind of understates it. I spent about an hour just now looking at dozens and dozens of threads all over the Internet about Darkness, and it's not many people. It's VIRTUALLY EVERYONE. How could ALL these people have somehow come up with such a wrong interpretation if the RAW is so clear as you imply?

But maybe that's not enough to really feel confident in our interpretation. What if we could ask the actual designers of the game what the "design intent" was? I mean, the phrase "design intent" sort of suggest that the designers would know what they intended, right?

If there was one, isolated Jeremy Crawford tweet, and we REALLY wanted our own interpretation to be true, we could come up with all sorts of excuses why we shouldn't listen to him. Which you did an admirable job of. But I went to https://www.sageadvice.eu/ and searched for "Darkness", and found 10 pages of results. There are MANY designer posts which support the "people can't see through a Darkness effect to the other side" and "people are blinded while inside the Darkness" interpretation. Not just by Crawford, though he has several in this vein. There are also similar statements by Dan Dillon and Mike Mearls, Mike freaking Mearls!

[Linked Image]

BOTH co-creators of 5th Edition are wrong about this? Plus another designer (tweeting about it in a very specific question to the topic, in 2020), plus almost EVERYONE else across the internet? Plus four people disagreeing here in this very thread? They're ALL wrong? Really? Oh, these spoony designers, not knowing their own intent. They should probably write themselves some post-it notes or something. Oh, these hundreds of other D&D enthusiasts, sadly illiterate and unable to parse out the meaning of a simple spell. They all need to sign up for Niara's reading comprehension class.

I just really want to see the conversation where Niara sits down in a conference room with the designers of D&D and informs them all that they are wrong, and that they are of course FREE to house-rule the game as much as they want, but SHE prefers to play by the RULES.

I'm done here. I'll just leave a few links to SOME of the designer statements contradicting Niara's 100% certain reading of the rules.

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2015/06/18/cast-in-the-darkness/

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2015/02/02/blind-fog/

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2017/12/1...-far-you-can-see-beyond-the-spells-area/

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2017/12/2...re-inside-the-darkness-has-devils-sight/

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2020/04/1...s-spell-opaque-i-e-blocks-line-of-sight/

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2016/05/14/if-a-creature-inside-a-darkness-spell-throws-a-ranged-attack/

https://www.sageadvice.eu/2018/04/0...dim-light-or-as-if-it-were-bright-light/



And that closes the topic, I suppose, eh? Since OP isn't going to respond any more.

Niara, I really do like you, so I hope you don't take any of this as an attack. But I think you put your foot down a little too hard on this one. Everyone is welcome to their own religion, though.
Posted By: Dexai Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/12/20 01:01 PM
Please have the self-distance not to make a tone argument about how somebody shouldn't sound arrogant while you yourself end your entire post with disparagement and condescension, firesnake.
Posted By: Firesnakearies Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/12/20 01:17 PM
Originally Posted by Dexai
Please have the self-distance not to make a tone argument about how somebody shouldn't sound arrogant while you yourself end your entire post with disparagement and condescension, firesnake.



That's a fair criticism. I thought about that myself. Condescension I will absolutely own up to, but this kind of cheeky condescension is part of my regular posting style, and it's firmly on-brand for me, so I'm gonna stick with it, and if people don't like me for it, that's certainly their right and I can't fault them one bit.

I'm not sure about disparagement, though. Did I overtly disparage?

If you're mainly talking about the very last sentence, then I'll agree that it's questionable. I debated putting it in. It is definitely a jab, but I consider it a friendly one, as I know my own motives and I have no ill-will for Niara at all. We've talked a lot and she's one of my favorite people on these forums. Really, it should have some kind of winking face attached, but I can't stand using those, so I'm willing to accept that it may be interpreted in the most malicious way by some people.
Posted By: TomReneth Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 10/12/20 03:36 PM
I would like Mage Armor to be implemented to override whatever armor is currently being worn i stead of only being usable in robes. So far there are few clothing options and I would like a little variation in appearance between my Wizard, Arcane Trickster and Warlock.
Posted By: batazin Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 19/12/20 07:30 PM
About SUMMON COMPANION:

- Boar: I think this one is broken, the boar charge simply does not work nearly as well as it should, I don't know if they fixed it in patch 3. I wanted to use it so bad but this summon it was not worth it at all. If this skill was fixed and the hitting chance was slightly higher (boars are agile) this one would be great.

- Bear: Works great

- Giant Spider: Works great and it's my favorite, the web casting ability works great for massive battles

- Raven: I think that not every animal companion should be useful in fights, some could be more useful outside of battles, interacting with the world, so I feel this one could use the flying ability in a more meaningful way. You cannot push things around like the other animals can, so you can reach some high grounds but cannot do anything with the things you find there. Maybe if you could interact with light itens and characters things could become interesting, making this summon more useful to have by your side, like picking up a key somewhere high and bringing it to you. talking about battles, maybe picking up some small goblins / itens and letting them go during flight would be awesome. Rend vision + 1 hp is definitely not worth it.

- Wolf: Between the goading ability + HP of the Bear or the web + poison dmg of the spider there's really not a reason to choose the wolf. The prone ability of the wolf is not worth it because of it's low % chance, this summon ends up dying faster than you could use the prone ability effectively. I think the wolf should have some more agility advantages besides the Jump/Disengage skill. Maybe if it had some higher hitting chance + extra low bleeding dmg OR higher hitting chance + attacking earlier in a fight could make me think about choosing this one over the bear or the spider.

Edit: During my gameplay I thought the wolf had higher chances of finding hidden things but turns out the chance seemed pretty even between all animals when I used them all at the same places. Maybe this would be something unique to the wolf, having a stronger smell gives him higher chances of finding stuff.

Now one really important question, why does the summon ability only works outside of battle? In baldur's gate 1 and 2 was like this as well?
Because I could not really see a motive for this, why wouldn't a mage ou a hunter be able to summon during battle?
If you wanted to make things a little bit harder for summoners to fight, maybe just being able to summon once or tooking 2 turns to summon something would work.
i don't really see the reason here (don't know if things changed in patch 3)
Posted By: Boomerjeremy Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 22/12/20 07:51 AM
It would be so cool if you moved the camera into a silence sphere if the sound effects and music were to stop
Posted By: ZetaZeta Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 30/12/20 07:05 PM
I've already said this elsewhere, but since this seems like a proper place to bring it up:

The one-summon limit is completely awful and guts the iconic gameplay for many sorts of D&D summoners. Additionally, it results in incredibly unintuitive interactions where spells clash with each other due to being implemented as summons, especially Mage Hand and Find Familiar. You can't use Mage Hand and have a familiar at the same time? You can't summon anything else if you have a familiar? Pure frustration.

The entire fun of playing a summoner comes from amassing a swarm and from choosing your summons to have them complement each other. What's the point of restricting them like this when the source material was plainly balanced around having multiple summons at once?

EDIT: Another observation after playing a bit more:

Enemies have generally been given more HP to account for additional ways of damaging them, especially via fields.

However, since spells that lack field interactions weren't buffed to compensate, this means that any spell that does damage or cares about HP but which doesn't create a field is currently very weak. This is most obvious with Sleep, which will almost never be able to hit more than one monster, and very rapidly becomes useless even at that.
Posted By: Madscientist Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 31/12/20 05:04 PM
@batazin:
Animal companions are not summon spells. The ranger seeks an animal and becomes its friend. The PHB version looks pathetically weak though. Especially because he orders the animal to attack instead of attacking himself.

- Larian chose to do it as ritual spell. This means you can do it only outside of combat but it costs no spell slot. I think it is fine this way.
- It is not a spell so it should not interact with other spells at all. This means it should not prevent you from summoning something else and it should not disappear when summoning something else.
- Animal companions (and probably the imp of the warlock too) should scale with the class level of its owner. HP, AC and hit chance go up with level, else they will be totally useless at higher levels.
- Personally I like that the animals are very different.

I agree that there should be no summon limit. You have the concentration mechanic, else you can do what you want. So the ranger can have a familiar, an animal and a concentration spell, for example a summon.
In the same way, wizards should have a familiar, animate dead and a concentration summon at once.
Posted By: Torus Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 03/01/21 07:21 AM
Another vote for the Shield spell and a rework of reactions in general. At higher levels and with certain feats, a spellcaster can use spells as reactions. Or maybe not, maybe you want to belay that attack of opportunity in anticipation of using the Shield or Absorb Elements spell later on.
Posted By: Chobin Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 03/02/21 06:15 AM
Proposal for the patch 3 spellcasting system. Sorry if this has already been brought up, couldn't find it via searching.

If you select a spell but don't choose the level in the widget it should default to level 1 when you choose a target. Or, the base spell on the hotbar should be level 1 and the widget menu should have leveled spells only.

There's been several instances when I went to cast a spell in combat but forgot to choose a level, and so when I went to click on my target I walked up to them or melee'd them instead of casting a spell. Likewise, when I want to cast a spell outside of combat if I forget to choose a level I would, again, either walk up to my target or I would enter dialogue with them when I didn't want to.
Posted By: daMichi Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 03/02/21 09:37 AM
This is also something that would be nice to have as a toggle, e.g. 'Spell Slot Level Auto-selection' or something like that.
Posted By: Roethen Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 05/02/21 06:58 PM
When repelling blast knocks a target down, they need to stay prone until their turn.

Colossus slayer should stack with hunter's mark (since hex stacks with agonizing blast).

The only healing items should be potions and magic items, not food.
Posted By: FuryouMiko Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/02/21 04:08 PM
Originally Posted by Niara
True Strike: The extra duration improves this originally difficult to use cantrip. Thumbs up!

True Strike is bad. No two ways about it. Even being able to hold it for a turn before discharging it does not fix the fact that you are choosing to spend one action to improve a second action by a lesser amount than simply taking the action twice would.

Example: You have a 65% chance to hit. With True Strike this increases to a 100% chance to hit. Not sure the actual number.

Or you could attack twice at 65% chance to hit. This gives you a +65% chance of damaging your target (compared to True Strike's +45%). The only possible use for True Strike is if for whatever reason you can't get line of sight to the target this turn, but will be able to next turn. This is so insanely situational that you're better off picking up a second damage cantrip because you're more likely to run into an enemy that resists fire than you are a battlefield that offers 100% concealment across a whole 30 ft move.
Posted By: CJMPinger Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/02/21 05:19 PM
Originally Posted by FuryouMiko
Originally Posted by Niara
True Strike: The extra duration improves this originally difficult to use cantrip. Thumbs up!

True Strike is bad. No two ways about it. Even being able to hold it for a turn before discharging it does not fix the fact that you are choosing to spend one action to improve a second action by a lesser amount than simply taking the action twice would.

Example: You have a 65% chance to hit. With True Strike this increases to a 100% chance to hit. Not sure the actual number.

Or you could attack twice at 65% chance to hit. This gives you a +65% chance of damaging your target (compared to True Strike's +45%). The only possible use for True Strike is if for whatever reason you can't get line of sight to the target this turn, but will be able to next turn. This is so insanely situational that you're better off picking up a second damage cantrip because you're more likely to run into an enemy that resists fire than you are a battlefield that offers 100% concealment across a whole 30 ft move.

Sometimes guaranteeing a hit is better than chancing it because of situations, and right now it works really well with classes that have multi attacks or action surges.
Posted By: Gungnir1876 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 21/02/21 08:35 PM
Good review! A couple of things about Darkness though....

1. Only creatures that can see through magical darkness should be able to see through, into, or out of it. So, in the example you gave, the drow actually wouldn't be able to see out of it unless that drow also happened to be a warlock with the Devil's Sight invocation. On that note, the devs do need to fix it so that Devil's Sight works correctly and actually does let you see through it, per it's description in the 5e Player's Handbook "You can see normally in darkness, both magical and nonmagical, to a distance of 120 feet." Otherwise, it's almost worthless because it gives everyone attacking into and out of it disadvantage. This spell is the bread and butter of several warlock builds because of Devil's Sight.

2. You should be able to cast it on an object you are holding. This is a massive element of the functionality of the spell. "If the point you choose is on an object you are holding or one that isn't being worn or carried, the darkness emanates from the object and moves with it." This in particular really ruins one of the coolest options for warlocks in 5th edition D&D: cast darkness on something that you are holding, and then run around eldritch blasting and stabbing enemies with advantage while they all have disadvantage attacking you. (This only works if they fix Devil's Sight also)

This spell is currently my biggest issue with the game. The only reason I bothered creating an account for the forums was to bring this to their attention so they can correct it. They way this spell is currently implemented is a major buzzkill for my favorite class.
Posted By: Seraphael Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 24/02/21 05:44 PM
Originally Posted by Niara
Jump: Works as written, however it hits up against a problem in the game's design. Distance travelled with a jump is just a part of your movement, and jumping itself does not, and should not, cost any part of your turn economy. As it is, this spell can let people jump upwards of 60 feet, and then use the rest of their movement as well... it should not do this, and it causes balance problems. The minotaurs with the 90 foot jump are an example of some of the tomfoolery this approach to jumping and movement causes. This is especially terrible considering the nearly-across-the-board decrease in spell ranges.

Jump is a first level spell that basically works as a free second level Misty Step spell every round for 10 turns. Seems over-tunded esp. for strength-based characters which are too much buffed in this game thanks to jump/disengage and shove (and over-incentivization of flanking).


Quote
Hex: Seems to work as written and listed. Thumbs up.

You obviously didn't play as a Warlock, let alone have two in your party. Hex is a CLUNKY TIME-WASTER as currently implemented. It is a spell you cast/re-apply nearly every turn as a bonus-action. The secondary curse effect has little to no in-game effect, yet we have to got through a menu to manually select an attribute to curse. These are the things that begs for STREAMLINING homebrew!

Simply make the secondary curse effect curse ALL attributes AUTOMATICALLY (Warlocks nerfed relative to other "full casters" by near unrestricted access to long rest and could do with a little buff anyway). If for some reason this is seen as overpowered, simply balance disadvantage with a smaller flat penalty to all attributes. Combat has been criticized as too slow-paced, and this *will* save a lot of time and annoyance.
Posted By: daMichi Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 24/02/21 11:12 PM
Originally Posted by Seraphael
You obviously didn't play as a Warlock, let alone have two in your party. Hex is a CLUNKY TIME-WASTER as currently implemented. It is a spell you cast/re-apply nearly every turn as a bonus-action. The secondary curse effect has little to no in-game effect, yet we have to got through a menu to manually select an attribute to curse. These are the things that begs for STREAMLINING homebrew!

Simply make the secondary curse effect curse ALL attributes AUTOMATICALLY (Warlocks nerfed relative to other "full casters" by near unrestricted access to long rest and could do with a little buff anyway). If for some reason this is seen as overpowered, simply balance disadvantage with a smaller flat penalty to all attributes. Combat has been criticized as too slow-paced, and this *will* save a lot of time and annoyance.

I would prefer they leave Hex as it is in 5e but I can right click on the Hex spell in the UI and it is then set to "Auto-mode" and always automatically uses either the highest ability of my enemy or the stat with what the enemy is fighting, e.g. Dex for archers, Str for two-handed fighters, etc.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 24/02/21 11:19 PM
Originally Posted by Gungnir1876
Good review! A couple of things about Darkness though....

Thanks for reading. If you read up the thread a bit, you can find where the discussion regarding darkness has been had already, at great length.

Originally Posted by Seraphael
You obviously didn't play as a Warlock, let alone have two in your party.

I did. It is clunky, yes. You have to reapply hex every time you successfully kill the hexed target before your turn comes around again, which is often. It's clunky in game, no denying, but that's a UI issue. The spell itself works as written. The secondary effect is usually minor in the tabletop as well, but having it be simply "disadvantage on all ability checks" would be grossly overpowered for such a simple spell that offers no save on application and no save out. Breaking other things to make up for other arbitrary breaks in the system is the Larian way of doing things; it's not a good way of doing things, so suggesting that they over-tune a warlock spell because warlocks are suffering due to a different break that they made in the system is a very bad suggestion, especially when the spell is not exclusive to warlocks. This would not save time particularly - only a small amount, for one spell. It's a band-aid fix on one aspect of one part of a problem, which is the poor UI design and interaction. That is what they should be fixing. If you feel like hex for warlocks is clunky, and are isolating that complaint there, then what about literally every other spell caster, with literally every other spell? Same amount of clicks as hex for all of them (Warlocks don't choose spell level, but every other caster does, using the same interface as hex). There is no reason to break this spell, when the problem that needs to be fixed is a much bigger one.
Posted By: mrfuji3 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 24/02/21 11:32 PM
The important detail about hex is that it only affects ability checks, not attack rolls or saving throws. How often do enemies really make ability checks?
-Perception to see hidden characters
-Contested athletics/acrobatics to avoid being shoved.

Hexing all ability scores would have roughly the same effect as hexing only the targets dex or str (whichever is higher).
Posted By: Seraphael Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 25/02/21 09:52 AM
Originally Posted by daMichi
Originally Posted by Seraphael
You obviously didn't play as a Warlock, let alone have two in your party. Hex is a CLUNKY TIME-WASTER as currently implemented. It is a spell you cast/re-apply nearly every turn as a bonus-action. The secondary curse effect has little to no in-game effect, yet we have to got through a menu to manually select an attribute to curse. These are the things that begs for STREAMLINING homebrew!

Simply make the secondary curse effect curse ALL attributes AUTOMATICALLY (Warlocks nerfed relative to other "full casters" by near unrestricted access to long rest and could do with a little buff anyway). If for some reason this is seen as overpowered, simply balance disadvantage with a smaller flat penalty to all attributes. Combat has been criticized as too slow-paced, and this *will* save a lot of time and annoyance.

I would prefer they leave Hex as it is in 5e but I can right click on the Hex spell in the UI and it is then set to "Auto-mode" and always automatically uses either the highest ability of my enemy or the stat with what the enemy is fighting, e.g. Dex for archers, Str for two-handed fighters, etc.

That may sound like the best of two worlds, but still miss the mark as well as add largely needless complexity to the game.

It doesn't normally do much of anything to curse the highest attribute, nor highest attack attribute. For instance, cursing Intelligence or Charisma of Wizards or Sorcerers likely has no in-game effect whatsoever.

Skill checks are not opposed by NPCs in the game as far as I know (Shove being possibly the only exception), so I suspect it's completely useless out of combat/in social settings.

Some possible scenarios where I think cursing attributes may conceivably have any effect at all:

Strength: Very limited usefulness. May be useful if you plan to use Shove (and the enemy has better athletics skill than acrobat), or if the enemy can Jump and you use Hex as an opener before they actually get to jump. Hex as an opener is a very questionable move as you aggro the enemy for little effect.

Dexterity: May again be useful if you use Shove (and the enemy has better acrobat skill than athletics). Since initiative order is rolled once at onset of combat, it won't affect initiative unless used as an opener (before rolling initiative).

Wisdom: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Intelligence: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Charisma: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Constitution: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Unless I'm missing something significant, and please correct me if you think I am, then having the option to curse specific attributes is purely a waste of time in the VAST majority of cases. It stands to reason then that streamlining the curse secondary effect to automatically affect all attributes is the most sensible method, and that having Hex give disadvantage to all ability checks isn't even remotely unbalancing in the context of BG3.
Posted By: Seraphael Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 25/02/21 09:54 AM
Originally Posted by mrfuji3
The important detail about hex is that it only affects ability checks, not attack rolls or saving throws. How often do enemies really make ability checks?
-Perception to see hidden characters
-Contested athletics/acrobatics to avoid being shoved.

Hexing all ability scores would have roughly the same effect as hexing only the targets dex or str (whichever is higher).

Hexing enemy NPCs makes them aggro you, which kind of defeats the purpose of lowering their perception to aid you in stealth. It (cursing Wisdom) is conceivably useful for pickpocketing where traders may/may not get a perception check. But given pickpocketing in the game is implemented as a gimmick/legal exploit (quick, no risks, huge rewards) with realistically guaranteed success when you know what to do/can easily savescum, it really doesn't matter smile
Posted By: daMichi Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 25/02/21 11:54 AM
Originally Posted by Seraphael
Originally Posted by daMichi
Originally Posted by Seraphael
You obviously didn't play as a Warlock, let alone have two in your party. Hex is a CLUNKY TIME-WASTER as currently implemented. It is a spell you cast/re-apply nearly every turn as a bonus-action. The secondary curse effect has little to no in-game effect, yet we have to got through a menu to manually select an attribute to curse. These are the things that begs for STREAMLINING homebrew!

Simply make the secondary curse effect curse ALL attributes AUTOMATICALLY (Warlocks nerfed relative to other "full casters" by near unrestricted access to long rest and could do with a little buff anyway). If for some reason this is seen as overpowered, simply balance disadvantage with a smaller flat penalty to all attributes. Combat has been criticized as too slow-paced, and this *will* save a lot of time and annoyance.

I would prefer they leave Hex as it is in 5e but I can right click on the Hex spell in the UI and it is then set to "Auto-mode" and always automatically uses either the highest ability of my enemy or the stat with what the enemy is fighting, e.g. Dex for archers, Str for two-handed fighters, etc.

That may sound like the best of two worlds, but still miss the mark as well as add largely needless complexity to the game.

It doesn't normally do much of anything to curse the highest attribute, nor highest attack attribute. For instance, cursing Intelligence or Charisma of Wizards or Sorcerers likely has no in-game effect whatsoever.

Skill checks are not opposed by NPCs in the game as far as I know (Shove being possibly the only exception), so I suspect it's completely useless out of combat/in social settings.

Some possible scenarios where I think cursing attributes may conceivably have any effect at all:

Strength: Very limited usefulness. May be useful if you plan to use Shove (and the enemy has better athletics skill than acrobat), or if the enemy can Jump and you use Hex as an opener before they actually get to jump. Hex as an opener is a very questionable move as you aggro the enemy for little effect.

Dexterity: May again be useful if you use Shove (and the enemy has better acrobat skill than athletics). Since initiative order is rolled once at onset of combat, it won't affect initiative unless used as an opener (before rolling initiative).

Wisdom: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Intelligence: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Charisma: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Constitution: No usefulness. Total trap option.

Unless I'm missing something significant, and please correct me if you think I am, then having the option to curse specific attributes is purely a waste of time in the VAST majority of cases. It stands to reason then that streamlining the curse secondary effect to automatically affect all attributes is the most sensible method, and that having Hex give disadvantage to all ability checks isn't even remotely unbalancing in the context of BG3.

Hex Constitution would have a benefit if concentration would work correctly and can't just be broken by using create water + frost ray cantrip to make a caster go prone (aka incapacitated).

Intelligence would be nice if a enemy caster then could fail an Arcana check and would not cast shield as a reaction because they don't recognize that your wizard is casting a blast spell (a little bit far fetched, i know, and not covered in DnD 5th RAW).

Jump should be used as part of movement, not as a (bonus) action, so hexing Str should only have an impact regarding how high a character can jump.

To set things to a kind of automatic mode is just a suggestion.
Take any spell, e.g. magic missile, right click on the spell in your hotbar and a moving, glowing border appears. Then you e.g. always use your highest possible spell slot.
Or you see a drop-down menu, were you can set a standard option.
Posted By: mrfuji3 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 25/02/21 04:30 PM
Originally Posted by daMichi
Hex Constitution would have a benefit if concentration would work correctly and can't just be broken by using create water + frost ray cantrip to make a caster go prone (aka incapacitated).
Actually this is incorrect. Maintaining concentration is actually a Constitution Saving Throw, not an ability check. So hex wouldn't affect it. It is poorly named, I admit

Originally Posted by daMichi
Jump should be used as part of movement, not as a (bonus) action, so hexing Str should only have an impact regarding how high a character can jump.
This is only half true. By default, 5e characters can jump up to their strength score if they move at least 10 feet, and 5 feet otherwise. Characters can jump 3+Str modifier high if they move 10 feet, and only half that distance otherwise. Since Hex affects ability checks, and not the score itself, hex wouldn't affect jump distance/heights in most cases.
The DM can allow checks to jump higher or farther, but honestly I doubt Larian would spend effort implementing such an obscure and situational rule.
Posted By: CamKitty Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/03/21 08:16 AM
A minor gripe I guess but bothers me every time it's a problem. Magic Missile does not have a travel path. It should never hit a wall. If you see them, you hit them
Posted By: BouncinGoat Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/03/21 01:38 PM
Hello,
I played with Druid and picked one of the Cantrips - Produce Flame.
The character creates a light blue bright flame that last for a short while as the blue light. But when you throw it, it turns to just a red flame out of nowhere.
I would love if you could keep the light blue flame, it gives veritay to spells. So I would love if you could change the animation of the ability when you throw it to the light blue color.
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 07/03/21 12:15 AM
Balance issue: Concentration spells are ALL nerfed to oblivion because of the abundance of surfaces. I'm not going to use Bless or Blur when a Fire surface arrow or bomb from a random goblin will make me roll for concentration three times. The only good option is to have less surfaces. Making concentration checks easier would overpower the same spells in other situations.

Underpowered: Color Spray, Acid Arrow, Healing spells (remove the pigs heads and other food items that heal entirely please)

Opinion: The VFX for long lasting protection spells such as Mage Armor, Barkskin and Arcane Ward are far too obtrusive. I hate it when you can no longer see the character properly after just one spell that lasts a long time. At higher levels you will have more effects stacked and it will be only harder to read with multiple heavy effects overlapping. I'm sure most of those could be toned down significantly and/or disabled outside combat. I understand the need for visual feedback but it should be proportional to the actual power level of the spell, and effects can also be visualized by icons rather than covering the character model itself.
Posted By: Dastan McKay Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 19/03/21 06:37 PM
No one gone acknowledge that Speak with animals should not require concentration?
It makes it a difficult to use for rangers and warlocks(via invocation)
Posted By: ZetaZeta Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 21/03/21 07:07 AM
Originally Posted by 1varangian
Balance issue: Concentration spells are ALL nerfed to oblivion because of the abundance of surfaces. I'm not going to use Bless or Blur when a Fire surface arrow or bomb from a random goblin will make me roll for concentration three times. The only good option is to have less surfaces. Making concentration checks easier would overpower the same spells in other situations.
Or just reduce the difficulty of concentration checks caused by surfaces, specifically.
Posted By: CJMPinger Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 21/03/21 08:48 AM
Originally Posted by ZetaZeta
Originally Posted by 1varangian
Balance issue: Concentration spells are ALL nerfed to oblivion because of the abundance of surfaces. I'm not going to use Bless or Blur when a Fire surface arrow or bomb from a random goblin will make me roll for concentration three times. The only good option is to have less surfaces. Making concentration checks easier would overpower the same spells in other situations.
Or just reduce the difficulty of concentration checks caused by surfaces, specifically.

Or even make that surfaces don't break concentration since most of the surfaces are Homebrewed in?
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 21/03/21 06:00 PM
Fog Cloud turns neutrals who run into it hostile. Barcus Wroot ran into my Fog Cloud, got blinded and attacked me.

It seems you can still target and hit creatures inside the cloud with ranged weapons normally too. Making it more of a trap than a good battlefield control spell. You should be able to hide from archers in the fog.
Posted By: CamKitty Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 21/03/21 10:47 PM
Originally Posted by ZetaZeta
Originally Posted by 1varangian
Balance issue: Concentration spells are ALL nerfed to oblivion because of the abundance of surfaces. I'm not going to use Bless or Blur when a Fire surface arrow or bomb from a random goblin will make me roll for concentration three times. The only good option is to have less surfaces. Making concentration checks easier would overpower the same spells in other situations.
Or just reduce the difficulty of concentration checks caused by surfaces, specifically.

I think we would rather Larian stop Larianing so hard with surfaces
Posted By: Sigi98 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 28/03/21 08:08 PM
Thank you OP for compiling this spell feedback. Its incredibly comprehensive and points out so many problems the game has right now. Can only give a +1, nothing to add.
I really hope Larian is reconsidering their choices.
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 13/04/21 06:19 PM
I'd like to add Longstrider to the list of persistent spells that have overdone VFX.

We don't need green glowing feet with huge swirlies for a minor buff that lasts forever. That level of visual feedback is appropriate for Haste which is powerful and has a short duration. Not being able to distinguish Haste from a small movement increase buff is bad.

I'd like my character to still look normal after casting Arcane Ward + Mage Armor + Longstrider. So that there's room for VFX for more powerful temporary stuff you actually need to be able to see at a glance.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 13/04/21 11:32 PM
It's a good point, and I didn't speak much about the persistent visual effects of some spells and the level of invasiveness for impact they have. Long term buffs and effects should not have large invasive effects; they should be visible in a minor way, if they are going to remain all rest cycle.

I have been meaning to get back and update this thread with the Druid list new spells, and go over the existing ones for any changes or fixes that have occurred but my time hasn't been as free lately, and I admit, my motivation has suffered as well. I still hope to do this, when I get a decent amount of clear time.
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 14/04/21 01:12 PM
Originally Posted by Niara
It's a good point, and I didn't speak much about the persistent visual effects of some spells and the level of invasiveness for impact they have. Long term buffs and effects should not have large invasive effects; they should be visible in a minor way, if they are going to remain all rest cycle.

I have been meaning to get back and update this thread with the Druid list new spells, and go over the existing ones for any changes or fixes that have occurred but my time hasn't been as free lately, and I admit, my motivation has suffered as well. I still hope to do this, when I get a decent amount of clear time.

I think a good way to deal with long lasting buffs that have minor effects is to only visualize them when they "activate". Or have a really discreet persistent visual effect that is greatly amplified when the spell actually does something. E.g. Mage Armor (+ Arcane Ward) force field becoming visible when you are attacked. It actually would be really cool to see a blade deflected in a flash of magical force with a cling. These spells don't make you better at dodging like BG3 visually claims. Longstrider could have a much smaller wind effect in your feet that only manifests when you run.

Speaking of Druid spells, Barkskin is pretty crazy. It's not just skin, it's weapons, armor, clothing, hair, everything textured with thick wood. I think a little less would look more stylish, like only the skin having a retexture. I'm already afraid of Stoneskin making my PC look like a statue of himself 24/7 if the current trend of strong VFX continues. The spell doesn't turn you literally into stone, just your skin becomes as hard as stone, which also explains why mobility doesn't suffer.
Posted By: Sir Balthazar Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 19/04/21 05:28 PM
You have made many excellent points, especially as someone who almost always plays paladins in PnP DnD I currently dislike the lack of player choice on when certain spells go off, when to give an attack of opportunity, etc.

Also, there shouldn't be any surfaces (beyond stuff like web of course). I absolutely love DOS2 and DOS1, but Baldur's Gate is not divinity and should not be treated as such.
Posted By: Merlex Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 10/05/21 03:47 PM
Originally Posted by ZetaZeta
I've already said this elsewhere, but since this seems like a proper place to bring it up:

The one-summon limit is completely awful and guts the iconic gameplay for many sorts of D&D summoners. Additionally, it results in incredibly unintuitive interactions where spells clash with each other due to being implemented as summons, especially Mage Hand and Find Familiar. You can't use Mage Hand and have a familiar at the same time? You can't summon anything else if you have a familiar? Pure frustration.

The entire fun of playing a summoner comes from amassing a swarm and from choosing your summons to have them complement each other. What's the point of restricting them like this when the source material was plainly balanced around having multiple summons at once?

I agree 100%. The main ability of a Necromancer is multiple summons. It's really the only good ability they get until high levels, which this game is not going to reach. My fear is that Larian will just omit the Necromancer to avoid this. I really hope not, the Necromancer sub-class would add a lot to this game. Not to mention they would be more likely than most, to follow the evil path that Larian had wanted us to try.

Originally Posted by Torus
Another vote for the Shield spell and a rework of reactions in general. At higher levels and with certain feats, a spellcaster can use spells as reactions. Or maybe not, maybe you want to belay that attack of opportunity in anticipation of using the Shield or Absorb Elements spell later on.

The Shield spell is my number one wish for early access. It's the Abjurer's go to spell in early to mid levels.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 11/05/21 05:57 PM
Posting to let folks know that the top post has now been updated to include spell changes in the subsequent patches, and also to include the Druid spell list, and the new spells therein! Sorry it took me so long to get around to it!
Posted By: mrfuji3 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 12/05/21 02:11 PM
Copying, organizing, and color-coding your extensive list based on:

Implemented well
Not implemented but that's understandable.
Not implemented but should be implemented.
Implemented but slight improvements would be nice
Implemented poorly; significant changes recommended
Comments added by me
Originally Posted by Niara
This feedback is focused on the current interpretation and implementation of spells and spell effects, partially along with what we've been told to expect regarding some of these in the future. There is cross-over between this, and the issue of status effects and their implementation, but this feedback will focus on spells.

Wizard Cantrips

Mending, Message and Prestidigitation are missing from Wizard cantrips, however, as much as they're fun and almost indispensable cantrips for many players in actual 5e RP, it's understandable why they don't make the cut for a video game.
  • I'd like it if we could have Mending to repair objects that get broken or shattered, but failing that perhaps it could restore a damaged object to full hp instead.
  • Message could be given a situational role; since it's inaudible to anyone else, it can function as a form of private communication, and it could potentially also be used to initiate dialogue with a character from long range, such as talking to prisoners you're not supposed to visit, or other similar situations.... again though, it's niche. I'd like to see it, but I won't complain about its lack.
  • Presti might be nice to have little camp scene niceties be improved as long as someone in camp has access to the cantrip – easy fire lighting, better food, easy cleaning, etc... creature comfort details. It would be background thing though, I imagine, so unless our camp gets a lot more atmospheric, probably also not worth the investment.

Acid Splash: The explode radius of the game's interpretation of this spell means that it can easily hit up to 4 targets, rather than the original 2. It creates a surface as well, but I'll write a section on that later; it's been heavily discussed by many already. (*Fixed*) This spell's explode radius should be reduced to 3ft; this brings it into line with the written spell, and would still allow you to catch two targets with it. Though the original spells specifically calls out targeting a creature, or two creatures, this one should benefit from being able to be targeted at a ground spot, as long as there's at least one target in its radius.

Blade Ward: The extra turn of duration is a positive boost to this otherwise difficult to use cantrip. Thumbs up from me for this one.

Dancing Lights: The ability to control and move the lights is much more limited in the game's translation, but it is acceptable. I'd very much like to be able to target it on four points within range, rather than one, as that would help it line up with the written spell better. I'd also like a few different colours...

Fire Bolt: (*Fixed: Surface spawn removed and d10 damage die restored*)

Light: I like light. It's neat and well handled for the most part. You can do everything you might want to with it, including casting it on an object and putting that object in your back to hide the light until you take it out. That's great. The one flaw is that you cannot dismiss the light in any way. The best fix for this is simple; have casting light on an object with the light status simply remove the light status again. Yes it'll take another action to do, but it's straight forward and saves you having to put another button somewhere.

Mage Hand: Just no. This is bad. Mage Hand cannot attack – the spell specifically calls that out, so WHY did you give it an attack? Mage Hand is not concentration, and the most it can carry is 10lb, so it can't realistically shove anyone. What Mage Hand should be doing is allowing us to open chests and doors at range, and to carry up to 10lb of stuff from said chests back to us, or around the immediate area as needed.

Minor Illusion: A better visual would be nice. I'm assuming the training dummy is a place-holder for now. Other than that, its translation into game does what you'd expect of it. Thumbs up.

Poison Spray: Seems to work as written and as described by the game's tooltips. Thumbs up.

Ray of Frost: (*Fixed!*)

Shocking Grasp: Seems to be working as written and as described in tooltips. On its own its perfect. It should, however, not be creating large swathes of electrified water or blood that can down an entire room... and I've seen it do that when combined with water on the floor. That's bonkers. Shocking grasp has advantage on targets wearing metal armour. If you want it to interact with surfaces, why don't you have it also grant advantage when targeted against an enemy that is wet, or standing in water? No extra effects or room electrification.

True Strike: The extra duration (slightly) improves this originally difficult to use cantrip. Thumbs up!
Summary of Most Important (red or orange) things:

  • Reduce Acid Splash radius to affect less targets; it's currently too powerful
  • completely overhaul Mage Hand to be a utility spell: it shouldn't deal damage or shove; it should not require Concentration, and most importantly it should not take the sole summon slot
  • tone down the surfaces of Shocking Grasp. Maybe it could deal extra damage against enemies standing in water?

1st Level Spells:


Missing: Alarm, Chromatic Orb, Comprehend Languages, Detect Magic, Floating Disc, Hideous Laughter(*), Identify, Illusory Script, Shield, Silent Image, Unseen Servant.

Alarm is niche, but I'd like to see it added to the game if we have more travel and more camp-related surprises. Any situation where we might get ambushed at our camp, having any character with access to Alarm as a ritual could prevent surprise or something of that nature. It's understandable that it's not present in the game as currently presented, however.

Chromatic Orb is a puzzling one, especially given how much current game design favours and loves attack roll spells. I can only suppose that it is absent because it involves player choice in combat... more on that issue later, but the short is that anything that involves player choice in combat is largely incompatible with the current game design, and it absolutely NEEDS to be fixed.

Comprehend Languages is also puzzling, given how many “A language you can't read/don't know” I ran into just in the first chapter. There's more than enough material to warrant the spell's inclusion.

Detect Magic and Identify's absences are understandable for the time being, where everything even remotely magical is flashy, highly visible, and already fully identified from the outset. I'd like this to change, but if it doesn't, it's not something I'd rise hell over.

Floating Disc is one I'd like to see: given the mechanics BG3 is already using for summons, floating Disc would just be a summon with a large carrying capacity... a welcome follower for that noodle-armed wizard. Also the amusing consequence of everything cascading onto the ground when it goes away on along rest.

Hideous Laughter was removed from the wizard's list, even though it is in the game, and available to the Old One Warlock. Why? Why arbitrarily remove this spell from Wizards? Give it back. I'll break the spell itself down in the Warlock section, since that's where it is in the current game.

Illusory Script, Unseen Servent, Silent Image: These spells are understandably missing, due to their niche application, or function that doesn't apply well to a video game scenario.

Shield: The lack of Shield is utterly unforgivable, though comments from the team imply we'll get it later , when they've sorted some other things out... however, those comments describe a way of handling reactions in combat that is simply not going to cut it at all... this comes back to player choice in combat, and the way the game currently denies it.

To the spells that are represented:

Burning Hands: Seems to work both as written and as described by the game. The fact that fire bolt creates a surface and this doesn't is a bit silly. Fire bolt should not, while higher level fire spells maybe could. If Burning Hands was to create a surface underneath it, you would need to reduce its damage die by one. Otherwise it's fine as is.

Charm Person: As far as I've been ale to check, upcasting this does nothing; you don't get the extra targets, at least not as far as I've seen. That needs to be fixed. The other problem here is that its description in its spell card, its tooltip, and its status effect disagree with and contradict each other. One says that it gives advantage on all checks in dialogue (charmer against charmed), while the other says you have advantage on all charisma checks against the target. These are not the same thing... and it's concerning to think that Larian supposes they are. If the charmed tooltip is accurate (stating that we have advantage on all ability checks in dialogue with the target), we should have advantage on insight checks, as well as an Intelligence (history, religion, etc.,) checks we make in the course of conversation to mention, bring up, or respond to information... if the Spell description is correct (advantage on charisma checks), then we do not. They currently contradict.

Neither the spell card, nor the tooltip indicate that the charm will break on damage or harmful activity... though they do. That's kind of an important detail to leave out. Charmed targets will often go out of their way to provoke opportunity attacks and thus free themselves of the charm. They seem to do this knowingly and deliberately. That's a problem. Our characters take those opportunity attacks, despite knowing that the target is charmed. Also a problem.

Colour Spray and Sleep: These spells use the die average rather than rolling, and that's okay, in a pinch. The bigger problem is this: In the original rules, Colour Spray will blind 4 goblins on average, and can blind up to 8 on a good roll. In BG3 currently, it might blind 2 goblins, at MOST. Sleep, in the original rules, will sleep 3 goblins on an average roll, while in the game it can sleep 2 goblins at most... and it only gets two goblins because they aren't actually using the die average – at level one – it's 2 points higher, to Allow it to get 2 goblins.... die average would only get 1 goblin in game. This is a large weakening of these spells, as a result of the largely thoughtless changes to monster stats to favour attack rolls, to the detriment of everything else.

Disguise Self: Currently cannot be cast with a higher level slot. At all. No reason for this – I'm going to presume it's a bug, and I've submitted it as such. Otherwise the spells' function is very limited in game. More options would be good. Perhaps the ability to target a creature we can see to assume their appearance? (Yellow because it doesn't have higher effects using higher level slots, making upcasting not important enough to warrant Orange)

Expeditious Retreat: Currently works exactly as it does in the original rules, however, the spell itself doesn't indicate this, and that may lead it to be very misleading to people who don't already know 5e or the spell. Reading the tooltips and spell cards, right now, you'd believe that you have to cast it with your bonus action, but don't get any extra movement until next turn, since you'd have already used your bonus action this turn. In reality, it DOES also give you dash when you cast it, but it needs to say that.

False Life: False Life claims it gives a flat number (which is below the expected spell average), however in reality it gives more than that. At 1st level, it claims to give 5, but gives 7 when cast, while at second level it claims to give 10, but gives 12 when cast.

Feather Fall: Saving discussion about Larian's intention for handling reactions and player choice in combat for later, the fact that IFeather Fall lasts for the full minute after casting is actually a good tweak for a video game medium. The fact that we cannot actually use it to save people who need it, unless we psychically know ahead of time and pre-cast it, is unacceptable... I will say that in a game setting, we should certainly be *Able* to pre-cast it before jumping the party off a cliff... but that shouldn't take away from it being a proper reaction to save ourselves from an unexpected fall, which is the spell's primary purpose.

Find Familiar: The spell card says that it summons a fey, but it doesn't. Our familiar is a Beast, not a Fey – and this is a distinction that matters for various reasons. Inaccurate tooltip aside, this needs to be fixed. The bigger issue with Find Familiar as it stands is that we cannot use it for one of its most versatile applications, which is the delivering of our touch spells through the familiar. This is an important part of the spell, a very important part of it, in fact. This needs to be rectified.

Fog Cloud: Works as written in the original rules, however the tooltip and spell card do not indicate this; you get a larger cloud on upcast, but someone not familiar with 5e already has no way of knowing that.

Grease: Grease is not flammable. There was even a sage advice on this. If the spell created a flammable surface, it would say so. It does not. Lubricating grease just isn't a flame hazard. If the spell was “Oilslick”, sure... but it's not. It shouldn't burn; in fact it should douse and replace fire surfaces. A bigger problem exists with Grease, but it's an issue that plagues many, many spells, and I'll talk about it in more detail below. The issue is in timing; *When* you make your saves is very important to the balance of spells, and the current implementation throws that right out the window in a bad way. More on bad spell timing changes below. Fuji is fine with Grease creating a flammable surface. Larian likes surfaces; let's give them this one.

Jump: Works as written, however it hits up against a problem in the game's design. Distance travelled with a jump is just a part of your movement, and jumping itself does not, and should not, cost any part of your turn economy. As it is, this spell can let people jump upwards of 60 feet, and then use the rest of their movement as well... it should not do this, and it causes balance problems. The minotaurs with the 90 foot jump are an example of some of the tomfoolery this approach to jumping and movement causes. This is especially terrible considering the nearly-across-the-board decrease in spell ranges. (Added: Supposed verticality is also an issue here - we can't jump where we can't see, and we cannot move the camera to higher areas manually; even 'tactical view' does not answer this issue with being able to see higher floors. Our ability to jump upwards doesn't increase at all, partially as a reuslt of this.)

Longstrider: Works as written, though it's really quite excessively flashy in its visual effect. Since we often target this spell on allies or multiple allies, it highlights a particularly bad problem with targeting buff spells on allies, related to the game's pathing system and movement: I tried to cast this spell with Gale as the spell's second target Four times in a row. Each time, I prepared the spell, waited until everyone stopped running laps around me for some reason, moved my cursor until myself and gale were highlighted as the receiving targets.. held still to make sure everyone was still, and clicked the button. The character cast, everyone ran around like ninnies again, and Gale did not get the buff, because the spell missed him... only my character got it. On the subsequent three tries, I failed, each time, to buff Gale. Do fix this nonsense, Larian.

Mage Armour: No, just no. Mage armour in the game currently says it “Increases your AC by 3”. That is Not what Mage armour does, and for very good reason. Mage Armour gives you an alternate method of calculating your base AC: 13 + Dex, as long as you're not wearing armour. These are not the same things. The current application of Mage Armour will allow Monks, Barbarians or Draconic sorcerers, for example, to benefit from it alongside their unarmoured defence traits, when they are not designed to do so. We don't have those classes yet, but that's not an excuse. We will have: things need to be made and presented with that in mind, and not changed arbitrarily without thought. Most things in the 5e book are fairly simple and straight forward, moreso than other editions... but they're also like that for very good reasons, most of the time.

Magic Missile: Works as written, but it's not nearly as 'unerring' as it claims. Magic Missile should not miss; that's its whole deal... yet it has a nasty habit of doing so in this game. It should not plot tracking lines that can be interrupted – rather this spell should target LoS on the creatures in question, and provided that is fine, no trace is made; they should give a *visual* of streaking through the air, definitely... but they should not actually trace paths that can be interrupted, if the spell has functional LoS.

Protection from Evil and Good: This one seems to work as written and described. Thumbs up!

Ray of Sickness: Works as written and described, however, the spell card should indicate that it requires both a ranged attack roll and a Con save if it hits. It currently doesn't say this, which will mislead people.

Thunderwave: Thunderwave has received a small boost, in that it pushes targets 20 feet now. It seems to work as advertised, however, the spell itself has been made weaker relatively speaking, to the rules and the game by virtue of the way shoving now works... Thunderwave has far less value when you can shove someone 15 feet as a bonus action. It's not worth its spell slot, in light of that.

Witch Bolt: Mostly works as written, however, it doesn't snap when you range out; it should. It also doesn't accurately indicate concentration time, and the tooltips and icons are misleading and contradictory.
Summary:

  • Implement: Chromatic Orb, Comprehend Languages, Floating Disc, Hideous Laughter, and Shield
  • Fix Upcasting and tooltip for Charm Person,
  • Increase HP-affected of Color Spray and Sleep to compensate for increased Goblin HP
  • Feather Fall should be a proper reaction, allowing us to save allies that suddenly fall
  • Fix tooltip of Find Familiar and allow familiars to deliver touch spells
  • Jump shouldn't combine jump distance + normal walking movement; also allow more verticality (mainly a camera problem).
  • Fix Mage Armor to set AC = 13 + Dex instead of increasing it by 3. Mage armor shouldn't stack with Heavy (or any, including natural) armor

2nd Level Spells:


Acid Arrow: Works as written, however the tooltip references the target making a save, even though the spell is an attack roll, and no saving throws are involved at any point.

Alter Self: Alter Self is missing, even though several of its well defined functions could be used, and we would want to hope that the game will eventuality allow situations for the other ones too. If we'll never get to swim at all, that would be very unfortunate, but lacking that, the ability to give yourself a natural weapon attack that counts as magical and has a +1 bonus is a nice feature that could easily be done. Copying someone else' appearance also has useful applications.

Arcane Lock: Missing from the game, for no real reason that I can see, other than that it was deemed unlikely that players would ever want to re-lock a door... Maybe too niche, and I suppose that's understandable, but I'd still like to see it as an option. (Fuji has classified this as blue because niche)

Blindness/Deafness: The game does not have the deafened status condition, as this version of the spell clearly shows us. That in itself is a problem, especially for bards, who have many spells and abilities that depend on the targets being able to hear. The range on the spell is longer, which isn't bad thing. The spell also suffers from the bad spell timing problem that I've mentioned before. Spells of this nature have been made massively weaker and massively less appealing as a result of spell save timing changes. Hopefully it's not intended and they'll fix it.

Blur: Seems to work as written and described. Thumbs up.

Cloud of Daggers: absent. This creates a cloud effect that deals damage. I thought for sure Larian would be all over getting this one into the game.

Continual Flame: Missing, but for understandable reasons.

Crown of Madness: Missing, but for no discernible reason. It's a little bit more complicated than some spells, but not so much as to warrant its removal from the game.

Darkness: The game version of darkness says that you can't make attacks into or out of it. I don't know why; that's completely made up, and in fact, largely renders the spell useless. You've also done darkness in this instance completely incorrectly. Darkness creates an area that is Heavily Obscured. Trying to attack something *IN* an area that is heavily obscured is hard - you, the attacker, are treated as functionally blind against that target. The darkness does *Not* inflict the Blind condition on people *In* it; that's completely undermining the function of the spell and makes it purposeless.
  • Someone *In* an area that is heavily obscured, attempting to attack someone who is *Not* in a heavily obscured area is *not* debilitated... in fact, they generally have *Advantage*, because *They* are an unseen attacker, in relation to the target they are attacking.
  • If you are a sneaky halfling, in the depths of a long, dark cave... and some big job steps onto a high ledge and waves their torch around... you might be 120 feet away, but you can still see them, and you can still shoot them with your bow... at advantage, because *they* cannot see *you* in the darkness – their torch light doesn't reach that far. This is how light and shadow works.
  • This is why drow get the spell; this is why drow assassins use the spell... they create a cloud of darkness, from which people can't see them attacking, and within which they are relatively safe from being attacked... but they can still see the lovely illuminated, lit up people on the outside that they want to shoot.
  • Fix this, Larian, and while you're at it, fix light and darkness, and also, please, fix the fact that the Devil's Sight Warlock invocation doesn't work... because you get just as debilitated by Darkness as everyone else.

Detect Thoughts: While this does actually seem to function, sort of, it took some testing. It's deeply unclear the correct method of using this spell to actually get it to show up in conversation. Rewrite the tooltip and spell card to describe how the spell is actually used in this game; this is one of the places where, with its in-game functionality, you need to stray from the basic description and actually give details. It needn't be much: “While under the effects of this spell, you may get additional options in dialogues to read people's thoughts”, or something of that sort. The other minor complaint I have is that most people use detect thoughts to skim surface thoughts and direct their conversation – this method is subtle and undetectable. Using the probe is indelicate and is usually a last resort. We should get conversation prompts to subtly listen to surface thoughts (no roll or check), and then maybe get new dialogue options based on what we learn and how we might like to apply that.

Enlarge/Reduce: Missing from the spell list, even though it's clearly already in the game elsewhere. Please return it to Wizards.

Flaming Sphere: Missing. (*Now in game; See the Druid Spell Section when it's added; boy has this one got issues...)

Gentle Repose: Missing, but understandably so.

Gust of Wind: Missing, but could work like a cloud effect that pushes people in a direction once a turn?

Hold Person: Works as written and listed, but suffers badly from the spell timing problem, like other spells: even on a success, the enemy will get a second chance to save out, and if they succeed, you get no benefit from the spell at all, despite originally sticking it successfully.

Invisibility: Works mostly as written, with some problems: Many mundane actions break invisibility – such as Dash. That's ridiculous. Also, invisible characters do not take opportunity attacks, even when it would be advantageous to do so – no reason that the wouldn't, especially considering our characters do take opportunity attacks on charmed enemies, when it's a bad idea to do so.

Knock: Missing, and for no good reason. Put it in please.

Levitate: Missing. Flight and levitation cannot realistically be left out of this game, not in this day and age. (*Edit: This is not looking hopeful at all, since they've given us flying creatures that can't actually fly)

Locate Object, Magic Mouth, Magic Aura: All absent, but for understandable reasons.

Mirror Image: No. Just No. This is not how the spell works at all, and there's no reason for it not to work as written. The way mirror image is implemented in the game currently makes it *Massively* weaker than its PnP version. This one isn't even an issue of player choice in combat - accurate mirror image would be entirely automatic! In this game, any miss, even a natural one, causes you to lose an image... that's stupid. The way the spell should work, is that when you're attacked, you roll a die – if you successfully redirect, the attack is aimed at an image, who has an AC of their own and can still be missed. The game's Mirror Image spends itself out on the first three no-chance attacks that would never have hit you anyway, and that's no good. Fix This.

Misty Step: Works as written, but... for some reason... the spell description for the spell has been changed from referencing silvery mist, to referencing black mist... er... why?

Phantasmal Force: Missing. This one could be put in in a limited sense; you could create a summon image, or the appearance of a damaging surface, which would be tied to your target. The summon version could attack the target for the listed psychic damage, while their AI would treat the surface as real and attempt to avoid it (or take psychic damage from it if they don't). I suspect this comes down to the game's inability to handle player choice in combat again.

Ray of Enfeeblement: Working as written and listed but is another victim of bad save timing, making the spell weaker and less valuable.

Rope Trick: Missing, but understandably so.

Scorching Ray: Working as written and listed, except that its range has been halved... while creature's ability to move out of range has not been decreased, and in many cases is even stronger than in the original rules. This weakens spells like this overall.

See Invisibility: Missing, for no discernible reason.

Spider Climb: Missing, but I'd really love to see them put it in. (Incredibly unlikely as they'd have to go over all surfaces and make them climbable. Definitely not worth the effort.

Suggestion: Missing, but understandably so.

Web: In the original rules, web fills a cube; it's not a ground surface. Even when layered on the ground, it creates a 5 foot deep layer on the floor. Read that again. 5 foot deep. It's thick and nasty. Web offers no save out to restrained targets. Targets must use their action if they want to attempt to break free – but can stay restrained and use their actions for other things if they want to. The duration in game has also been drastically shortened (while fog cloud remained the same?). The result is that, overall, Web's actual value has been reduced substantially. I feel like I'm saying the same thing uncomfortably often...
Summary:

  • Implement Alter Self, Cloud of Daggers (surface!), Crown of Madness, Enlarge/Reduce, Gust of Wind, Knock, Levitate, Phantasmal Force, See Invisibility
  • Darkness should probably allow attacks out of it? At the very least, Devil's Sight Warlock should be able to see in/out of it.
  • Fix the tooltip for Detect Thoughts to more accurately reflect how it is used in game
  • Most repeated saving throws should happen at the END OF TURN, not the beginning: Blindness/Deafness, Hold Person, and Ray of Enfeeblement
  • Fewer actions should break Invisibility (e.g., Dash). If toggled on, invisible creatures should make Opportunity Attacks
  • Mirror Image should add 3 mirrored images, not add +9 AC. Importantly, an attack that would miss anyway (against your base AC) should not make you lose an image.
  • Make the Web area 3-dimensionional (5 feet deep) instead of 2D. Don't give creatures automatic saves; they need to spend an action to attempt to break free

On to Cleric (Excluding spells already covered):
Todo later
Also Todo: Go through the past 4 pages of this thread and compile others' comments about these spells

For a more in-depth examination of all 5e spells missing from BG3, including sources other than the base PHB, see this post
Posted By: JiruoVX Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 19/05/21 07:39 PM
Agree with most of OP analysis and others responses. Great thread! I have feedback for a few spells to place below that don't doesn't seem fully discussed already in this tread.

My biggest wish is a clear answer from Larian if they want to make this game close to a proper 5e experience with some typical house rules or simply game inspired by 5e. It makes it hard to give feedback without that knowledge because answers on one end of the spectrum might be completely ignored.

--------
Fog Cloud Discussion
BG3 Fog Cloud |
1) It blocks sight with the blind condition for those inside the cloud.
2) Those outside the cloud can't target those inside the cloud.

Tabletop Fog Cloud |
1) Those in the cloud can't see in or out of the cloud
2) Those outside the cloud can't see those in the cloud
3) You can not see through the cloud to those on the opposite side.

BG3 fog cloud is missing the third piece. I can give my attempted use of the third option in BG3 and it failing.
Near game start after getting most of the companion, the first ruins area you enter from the door (the entry above where you meet shadowheart). This room has only one door going further in where most of the enemies are located. So I cast fog cloud with the intention to force them closer disabling their range by placing it in the doorway. But they keep shoot me as if the cloud didn't exist. They didn't even have disadvantage.
----------
To Add more latter...
Posted By: earl45 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 18/06/21 04:45 PM
Given Larian is still dealing with inclusion and balance, I'm honestly fine with there things are headed. My one MAJOR objection is Eldritch Blast by the Warlock. Just a game breaker:(
Posted By: al969238 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 05/07/21 02:43 PM
I think illusion spells seem to lack functionality, they seem to be a very weak and worthless school of magic to choose, hope something is done would like to see a great illusion wizard build viable.
Posted By: avahZ Darkwood Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 05/07/21 04:27 PM
Simple point. I don’t use concentration spells (unless free use, like that paladins (Tyre) sword in the hands of a battlemaster) at all. And spells that have too many save options. It’s simple, I must do damage to win, so any attack that does half damage on a save or magic missile. I will use situational spells like speak with animal, feather fall, etc. When in battle, forget the loss of action with useless spells, the point is to kill. At this point, it’s almost useless to use other spell types. I also don’t use light spells because I let Gale or my Wizard use a torch. It lights up the whole area for a party and they can still cast spells. Weapons are useless for them now that cantrips are free use. Heck, torches are some of the best in game weapons atm. smile

Just FYI, there is an exploit. In the cut scenes, if you wake up still in camp for some reason (dream, etc) you can change out a camp companion and get them to cast a concentration spell on you, remove them and leave them behind. The spell stays on you until next rest. They are at camp and can not lose concentration smile.
Posted By: earl45 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 07/07/21 01:16 PM
Seconded.

Also, I'd say the trickster cleric needs a remake given the new Loki series;)
Posted By: Blackheifer Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 07/07/21 01:40 PM
Originally Posted by earl45
Seconded.

Also, I'd say the trickster cleric needs a remake given the new Loki series;)

Loki is more of a Pact Blade Warlock if you think about it.
Posted By: CJMPinger Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 07/07/21 02:54 PM
Originally Posted by Blackheifer
Originally Posted by earl45
Seconded.

Also, I'd say the trickster cleric needs a remake given the new Loki series;)

Loki is more of a Pact Blade Warlock if you think about it.

I'd say more Arcane Trickster Rogue.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 07/07/21 04:05 PM
Arcane Trickster Rogue ... totally Arcane Trickster Rogue.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 16/07/21 10:59 AM
Patch 5 ... darkness is still working like obstacle frown even if you have devil sight invocation. frown
Posted By: CJMPinger Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 16/07/21 07:31 PM
Patch 5 Find Familiar, Mage Hand, and Flaming Sphere (and ostensibly Ranger's Beast Companion) all still dismiss each other. Additionally Mage Hand is still concentration, and both Mage Hand and Familiars attack in ways they shouldn't be able to.
Posted By: HustleCat Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 17/07/21 03:36 AM
Not sure if it's a bug or not, but minor illusion should be able to be casted from stealth like it says in its tool-tip description. Instead, it takes you out of hiding and starts combat.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 18/07/21 06:53 AM
Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Patch 5 ... darkness is still working like obstacle frown even if you have devil sight invocation. frown
Funny story ...
Fog Mist is working exactly the oposite ... wich means not at all. O_o

Tooltip sais "creatures cannot make ranged attacks into or out of the fog" ... so i thought it would be good protection against ambush in Blighted Village ... sadly, for some unknown reason, goblins were still totally able to attack me ... but i was unable to target them. -_-
Posted By: avahZ Darkwood Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 18/07/21 05:16 PM
Don’t step into a puddle… you end up losing all your concentration spells smirk

At this point, concentration spells are worthless unless they are cantrips or item based spells.
Posted By: siddsz Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 22/07/21 09:49 PM
Produce Flame is no longer part of the Druid Cantrips.
Posted By: avahZ Darkwood Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 23/07/21 11:54 AM
Animal Friendship is no longer a concentration spell!
Posted By: Gourls Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 22/09/21 05:00 PM
Great post.

You kind of bring this up later, but in the cleric section, you have both bless and bane listed as working as intended which isn't quite true.

Those two spells allow the caster to select targets within range. Right now, you can't do that. You hit on this elsewhere though with how the sleep spell currently works, and the more broad statement relating to (a severe lack of) player choice, particularly in relation to how spells and spell targeting works.

If I want to cast bless before a fight, I shouldn't have to finagle my party into a position I want them in to not accidentally bless someone I don't want to, because I only want to use the 1st level slot (mainly because why on earth would you use Shadowheart to cast spells that require an attack roll if you can avoid it). Bane is similar. So is sleep.

And then you've hit the nail on the head about reactions and paladins. I've wondered that from the get-go with this game, once I saw that they have reactions set as a toggle. I have no idea what they're going to do, and I'm beginning to suspect they don't either since they've mostly just refused to do anything with reactions that didn't seem absolutely necessary, or avoid the issue altogether by forcing the player into situations that are.. less than optimal, to say the least. You point this out with hellish rebuke. Feather fall is another strange case. And while it isn't a spell, the riposte maneuver on battlemaster fighters works in a similar manner. It's just.. bad. And wildly unrepresentative of the ruleset they are seeking to emulate. I get that some sacrifices get made to translate a ttrpg into a videogame, but a certain other game that gets mentioned around here a lot implemented the ruleset in a fairly elegant way. I don't see why Larian can't do something similar, apart from the amount of time that would take (which would mean, probably, everything breaks for a while).

This is one of those times when I really wish Larian gave us any indication, at all, that they read these forums and would respond to us to talk about their design philosophy. I get some of why you don't do that, but it might alleviate some frustration, I would think.
Posted By: LordRhaegar Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 10/10/21 11:35 PM
Completely agree about Reactions and player choices during combat. I really for the life of me can't understand why someone would consider prompts for user inputs in a role-playing game intrusive. Please do intrude on the flow of my combat to ask me if I would like to react because that "intrusion" is the one that offers me choices, a sense of agency, and greater strategic maneuverability. The current implementation of Reactions is hands down the most disappointing aspect of the game.
Posted By: SerKaelwain Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 18/10/21 04:18 PM
I fully agree with the original post concerning the spells Web (shouldn't be just a surface), Mirror Image (implement it like the PnP version please) and the absence of Shield (maybe a pop-up menu if you have Shield prepare and the necessary slot available once you know the opponent's attack roll?). Mirror Image and Shield are particularly problematic. Wizards and Sorcerer depend on defensive spells to survive in battle. Even with the PnP version of Mirror Image and Shield, you still should be careful not to get in the thick of the fight because you don't want to be forced to use precious spell slots to simply avoid getting hit and do little else. It wouldn't unbalance the game to keep these 3 spells like their PnP original versions, especially since the martial classes have been given new weapon abilities to work with.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 19/10/21 05:33 AM
Top post has been updated with the new spells, and with the fixes that have been made to some existing spells.

In particular, for those not wishing to trawl, the new spells:

With patch 6, we now have Sorcerers, and with them a small handful of new spells:

Sorcerer Spells

1st Level Spells

Chromatic Orb: The primary tooltip for Chromatic Orb gives it a range of 60 feet, reduced from the original spell's 90 feet. This means that now, from maximum rang,e your target can move right into melee range with you on their turn, whereas in 5e, at full range, they generally can't. The continual crunching of spell ranges is a low visibility, yet very grievous nerf on spell caters everywhere. Beyond this, the tooltip says that you throw an orb that deals 3d8 elemental damage of your choice at an enemy.

This is immediately shown to be false if you bring up the selection window: Thunder Orb deals 3d8, but literally none of the other options do – they all deal 2d8, and create a surface. For example, the lightning Orb creates a water puddle. That sure makes sense. Display-wise, this spell highlights a problem that many of us foresaw, but Larian have gone ahead with anyway: The selection window has been co-opted to serve as both our choice of spell level, and our selection for the spell itself, which means we pop open a window with six pairs of identical icons, and no way to tell them apart without highlighting each one. Further more, there's no really sense to the order in which they appear. One my screen, for example, they appear in the order: Thunder Lvl2, Thunder Lvl1, Poison Lvl2, Poison Lvl1, Lightning Lvl2, Acid Lvl1, Acid Lvl2, Cold Lvl1, Cold Lvl2, Fire Lvl1, FireLvl2, Lightning Lvl1. There is really no rhyme or reason to it. On Swen's stream, his Chromatic Orb options appeared in a different order. At 9th level, when we have access to 5th level spells, this selection window will have to contain 30 buttons, unless the fix it.

The spell itself also has problems: Chromatic Orb is an attack roll spell, which means it is a precision spell. You are meant to be able to pinpoint your one inch orb of elemental pin at an enemy that's mixed up in the melee of your allies without risking them. If you miss, the spell does nothing, and that's the balance for the high damage for slot level that attack roll spells get to enjoy. Chromatic orb now creates a puddle if you use any element other than thunder, and that puddle means that you will harm and hamper your allies if you attack an enemy that is in melee range with them. The spell cannot effectively be used for its designed purpose any more, which is precise damage of a precise element to a precise target. Not only will your lightning orb make a water puddle and electrocute Lae'zel who is in melee with your enemy, but this extra damage, and more importantly extra status effect, are not given a save to resit or avoid, at all. A minor tap of free guaranteed damage is okay for a levelled attack roll spell – one minor tap – but inflicting a guaranteed debilitating status ailment without offering a save to avoid or resist, and doing so even on a complete miss, is not okay.

2nd Level Spells

Cloud of Daggers: Cloud of Daggers looks pretty nice in game, but I've always been a sucker for spirally swirly effects. The spell tooltip does not state the size of the area it creates, and it should. It looks like it makes a 10 foot circle, while the original spell is a 5 foot cube. It retains its 60 foot range, and as with many spells in BG3 currently has the same double-tap damage problem, just like Moonbeam. It is meant to apply damage when a creature first enters the area, or at the start of a creature's turn if it starts in the area: In specific to this, it does NOT apply damage to targets in the area when you first cast the spell, specifically for this reason.

Crown of Madness: Larian have elected to disregard the existing spell description for Crown of Madness, and write their own in its place. In doing so, they have completely neglected any mention of the fact that this is a charm effect. The spell doesn't say it, the tooltip doesn't say it. They also do not mention anywhere in the spell description that this effect is limited to Humanoids, and the spell cannot be cast on non-humanoid creatures. The tooltip ALSO does not mention that the target can attempt to save out at the end of their turn.

These things ARE both the case in the BG3 version of the spell – it just doesn't TELL you that any of them are. The spell has had its range crunched down from 120 feet to 60 feet, and it now only lasts for 3 rounds, instead of up to 1 minute.

The original spell specifies that the target must make a melee attack before moving, attacking a target that you get to choose. If it cannot do this, then it is allowed to act normally for that turn. The spell description in game does not say that they will be allowed to act normally under any circumstance, and says only that they will attack the nearest creature.

The spells actual behaviour is hard to work out, and the game does not help clarify this. The spell description only says that the target will attack the nearest creature. In my experience so far, this has rarely, if ever, actually happened, but the game does not explain why.

In one particularly telling experiment, A Crowned enemy was standing with a melee weapon out, and in melee range of both my caster, who was concentrating on the spell (thereby, the enemy was charmed by me, and so was not allowed to attack me) and Shadowheart, who had no effects on him. The enemy did not attack Shadowheart, despite her being a valid target in melee range, and instead ran away from both of us, up to Gale, and attacked him instead. It seems like the creature was allowed to act normally, but it's hard to say exactly why.

Enlarge/Reduce: The original spell allows you to cast Enlarge or Reduce on an object that is not being worn or carried. This is not the case in the BG3 version, and only living creatures are applicable targets. The spell description in game does not make any mention of changing the target's size category or weight, but these effects do seem to take place, just as the original spell describes. The other aspects of the spell all appear to be working correctly and read correctly as well. Reducing a companion so they become light enough for you to throw them across a gap works perfectly, and medium creatures can reduce in order to fit through small-sized crawlspaces, such as the back entrance to the kids' hideout in the grove.
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 29/10/21 04:38 PM
Cloud of Daggers feels like it's missing sounds from the daggers when they swirl around or hit someone. It's oddly silent. I want to hear some wooshing and cutting when Lae'zel throws someone into the cloud!

Chromatic Orb's selection yet again highlights what a nightmare the UI is to use. Level 1 CO and upcast level 2 CO side by side, looking identical. Upcast options should be a separate "upcast" button over the base spell, not an identical icon right next to the original spell. At level 5 we would get a third identical icon with each element. Please make the entire UI a priority redesign.

Does Shocking Grasp's Advantage against metal armor work at all? I don't think I've ever gotten an Advantage with it.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 30/10/21 12:50 AM
Shocking grasp gave advantage on characters wearing very specific pieces of armour, which were not common, at least a few patches back - I've not checked the most recent patch.

(Mostly, it's useful as a Larian-ism surface abuse spell... cover an area in water, and you've got a cantrip that now does a die of damage to every target for multiple rounds without a save. It's silly and broken.)

The biggest issue that I have with the current patch is Crown of Madness is granted literally everyone advantage on its save, for no reason. Every creature, regardless of race or other abilities, rolls with advantage to save against this spell, currently, in every circumstance. It is not like other charm effects that grant advantage if you are fighting the enemy - crown of madness is specifically designed as a combat spell and doesn't have that caveat, so only targets that actually have advantage against charm effects should be getting advantage.
Posted By: Lyelle Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 26/11/21 10:15 PM
I would really like to see some of the more strange options of the Wild Magic Surge table in game, like transforming into a medium-sized potted plant, the appearance of a unicorn or the illusionary butterflies. I know it's not crucial, but I think it would add additional flavor to the wild magic sorcerer, when the effects are not always just helpful or harmful, but sometimes just plain weird and chaotic.

I like that there are more and more opportunities to use the disguise self spell, this offers a lot of roleplaying opportunities, especially with the charlatan background. There are some situations where an NPC, like Rugan, still recognized my character, even if I used disguised self, but I think it would be a lot of effort to check this for every NPC.
Posted By: Kind_Flayer Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/21 02:07 PM
I like the current implementation of wild magic. I haven’t played a wild magic sorcerer in 5E, but I prefer not having a lot of frequent weird and dispruptive events occurring.

Tides of chaos doesn’t seem to be triggering wild magic surges, when used for out of combat skill checks.

It would require a lot of effort to make disguise self great. At this point, I would prefer that they hold off on fixing disguise self until other, easier fixes are made.

Darkness and fog cloud definitely seem broken. Enemies are making ranged attacks and hitting my PCs that are in fog cloud and magical darkness. Warlocks with Devil’s sight cannot make ranged attacks out of magical darkness.
Posted By: Lyelle Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/21 04:02 PM
Originally Posted by Kind_Flayer
It would require a lot of effort to make disguise self great. At this point, I would prefer that they hold off on fixing disguise self until other, easier fixes are made.

I agree with you, this would be too much effort for a single spell. I think it would be impossible to take into account all the situations where it could be used, and I would not expect this in a game.
I like the spell very much just as it is right now smile
I have been positively surprised that it is possible to use this spell, and that it opens up a new approach and completely new dialogue options. And I like the animation when you dispel disguise self and your character staggers a bit. The spell animations in general are very beautiful.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 27/11/21 04:51 PM
Originally Posted by Kind_Flayer
I like the current implementation of wild magic. I haven’t played a wild magic sorcerer in 5E, but I prefer not having a lot of frequent weird and dispruptive events occurring.
Honestly i dont ...
I would like it much more working exactly as (Niara i believe?) suggested ...
You use Tides of Chaos > you get granted wild surge > your Tides of Chaos recharge ...

Also there certainly should be more non-benefitial effects (damaging, weakening, or simply just for fun). frown

I mean i know that having Advantage with every spellcast may seem OP ... but concider also you risk to cast Fireball on your party every time you cast, or heal your enemies ... i would say that ballances itself quite well. laugh
Posted By: mystakai Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 29/11/21 10:23 PM
The implementation of darkness is extremely poor. It is not supposed to be an environmental cloud effect which can be replaced by other cloud and surfaces. Enemies also seem to be able to shoot into the darkness from high ground without issue. The whole spell needs to be reworked. The ai should be guessing where the player is inside and firing shots at locations rather than being unable to shoot on at all. It should not be coded as a cloud effect as the engine seems to be unable to have 2 clouds on the same zone. An acid flask should not displace a patch of magical darkness. Please fix this.
Posted By: Rasch Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 25/01/22 07:42 PM
I’d really like minor illusion to have some more of the utility it can have in a tabletop game.
Another common use besides drawing someone’s attention is to create a 5ft cube (i.e. a crate/box etc.) in front of yourself or an ally in trouble and stand behind it to gain (partial) cover. As far as I know, the most common ruling is that an enemy must attack, miss and then see through the illusion or spend an investigation check and beat the spells DC (as per spell description) to see through the illusion. If not the penalty from half/full cover applies.
(Truesight and such would of course also bypass it)

As for Prestidigitation, now that everyone gets super dirty after one fight, it could clean up a targeted character. Or make someone clean look dirty.
Also, instantaneously lighting or snuffing out a Candle, a torch, or a small campfire from range can be useful as well.
Posted By: Volsalex Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 17/02/22 09:55 AM
I'm bumping this thread as there weren't stated any changes to Chromatic Orb in Patch 7. Please make it work in a similar way to tabletop - it should just deal 3d8 damage + 1d8 for every upcast level of chosen type to its main target. As an elemental effect, it can also trigger existing surfaces like setting Grease on fire on making water electrified, but that's it.

If you want to give players an option to create surfaces and play with them, you can just do that via common consumables. You already did this with things like Bottle of Grease and Bottle of Water, you can just create similar consumables for other surfaces and make them common enough to be decently accessible to players. This will be much better as players would have total control of if and where they want to create a surface.

EDIT: Another option is to make Chromatic Orb deal full mentioned damage to target if somebody is targeted or create a surface it creates now if nobody is targeted. One impication though - even if you do such a change, it shouldn't make it unavailable to be used with Twinned Spell. If you think we need to pick one between making it available for Twinned Spell or creating the AoE if nobody is targeted, just implement the first suggestion because Chromatic Orb is and should be mainly a single-target spell and surfaces could still be covered with consumables.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 17/02/22 11:38 AM
Originally Posted by Volsalex
Another option is to make Chromatic Orb deal full mentioned damage to target if somebody is targeted or create a surface it creates now if nobody is targeted.

Personaly i still dont like this idea ...
Cant see why cant we simply get toggle if we want to create surfaces for the cost of single damage dice ... or not.
Posted By: Volsalex Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 17/02/22 12:23 PM
Can be an option as well.
Posted By: MyrddinDerwydd Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 22/03/22 03:05 AM
Adding some more feedback for the notes on on mage hand, because this is absolutely infuriating, on top of the 'can't multi summon' issues.

All of these things are broken or wrong with mage hand.
- can't interact with levers, containers, items etc.
- shouldn't be able to actively attack. Full stop. No, it should not be shoving characters either. Ten. Pound. Limit. There's a reason - many very good reasons - why mage hand has strict limitations in D&D that DM's homebrew away from only cautiously. Mage hand is currently a really shitty familiar.
- prohibited from jumping so can't reach high places??!?!?!?
- prohibited from being summoned on some completely open surfaces, such as the very center of the Grymforge. It can move onto this location, but can't be summoned there.
- CAN'T PICK UP OBJECTS???????? This is THE most essential function OF mage hand and they've made it not possible????
- I also cannot successfully get it to throw anything (the only legit way mage hand should be able to 'attack') because a) it can't pickup/interact with objects and b) it has no inventory of objects to choose from.
Posted By: ZetaZeta Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 20/04/22 06:43 PM
Originally Posted by MyrddinDerwydd
Adding some more feedback for the notes on on mage hand, because this is absolutely infuriating, on top of the 'can't multi summon' issues.
Has there been any feedback from Larian at all about this? Being limited to only one summon completely breaks several core builds and in some cases even entire classes; it's a baffling decision that causes so many problem without improving the balance or gameplay one iota.

I would call the one-summon limit the single worst part of BG3's spell system. It arbitrarily guts an entire style of play, without even the slightest explanation as to why, and it causes constant bugs and issues with things like familiar and mage hand due to them arbitrarily counting as summons. None of the system was designed or balanced with this arbitrary and frustrating limitation in mind - such a poorly-considered choice.
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 20/04/22 07:33 PM
Originally Posted by ZetaZeta
Has there been any feedback from Larian at all about this?
There was no feedbackback about anything from Larian ... ever.
All we can do is guess what they listened to, when they implement it in futher patch. :-/
Posted By: Tav3245234325325 Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 11/07/22 12:51 PM
I really like the vocalised spell animation. The words shouted. such a great idea! really really good!

the only 'negative' thing i could say is I miss identify as spell or ritual.. because i miss the little surprises.
Posted By: UltimaBACON Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 15/07/22 02:57 AM
Dissonant Whispers needs to specifically force the enemy to use its reaction to move away from you (possibly drawing Attacks of Opportunity from you and your allies). It's not a frighten effect and is thus supposed to work even against enemies who can't be frightened.
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 15/07/22 03:23 AM
I've not updated this thread with the new spells for this patch yet, but if I can find the time to go through things and see if they've fixed or changed any of the existing issues when I do so, I'll try.
Posted By: Brainer Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 25/07/22 01:50 PM
Darkness is still wonky and awful as of Patch 8, but I have noticed that a warlock with the Devil's Sight invocation is immune to the blinding effect (creatures with natural superior darkvision aren't, though, for whatever reason).

The biggest problem that still persists with every surface-spawning spell (Grease, Spike Growth, Entangle and so on) is that the surface they create gets overriden with other things, like blood or water. There should be a priority order for surfaces overriding one another (anything that needs to be concentrated on shouldn't just disappear from being peed on, always staying on top of the other ones), and it should be limited to elemental interactions only (fire burning entangle vines/webs/grease, for instance).
Posted By: RagnarokCzD Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 25/07/22 06:55 PM
Originally Posted by Brainer
warlock with the Devil's Sight invocation is immune to the blinding effect (creatures with natural superior darkvision aren't, though, for whatever reason).
Im not sure they are supposed to be. O_o
Posted By: Brainer Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 30/07/22 04:28 AM
Another long-running issue that hasn't been addressed as of yet (and no doubt mentioned here several times already) is how multi-targeting is implemented for Bless, Bane, and upcast versions of spells that allow additional targets with higher level spell slots (e.g., Command (Halt)). It's unacceptable, frankly. Having almost no control over who gets the effect with something that consumes a resource and is a valuable tactical tool should absolutely not be that freaking awkward to use.
Posted By: AuroraOurania Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 06/08/22 10:20 PM
I definitely feel like spells that require saving throws need a buff, as they were indirectly nerfed by the way that HP was buffed and AC was nerfed on enemies.
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 08/08/22 07:14 AM
Spell incantations are still being shouted VERY loudly. While this is fitting for an offensive spell, shouting like you want to rip someone to shreds just to create a Light or cast Guidance in a dungeon is not. There are many situations where discretion would be much more sensible than shouting at the top of your lungs. When Shadowheart shouts Guidance just to disarm a trap, it feels like enemies should rush in to see what the ruckus is about.

A more dynamic approach where some spells could be almost whispered would be much better from a narrative and stylistic point of view. It would also be a great way to give spells different kind of character. E.g. Illusions could be more whispery echoy mysterious, Enchantments could be soft and alluring, Abjurations could be steadfast monotonous speech, Conjuration could be calls that echo, Necromancy could have some spirits whispering in the background and Evocation could be the brash shouting we now have for basically everything.

And whispering really loudly can be great for a dramatic effect. ,-)
Posted By: Niara Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 08/08/22 07:48 AM
Originally Posted by Brainer
Another long-running issue that hasn't been addressed as of yet (and no doubt mentioned here several times already) is how multi-targeting is implemented for Bless, Bane, and upcast versions of spells that allow additional targets with higher level spell slots (e.g., Command (Halt)). It's unacceptable, frankly. Having almost no control over who gets the effect with something that consumes a resource and is a valuable tactical tool should absolutely not be that freaking awkward to use.

Unfortunately, when I spoke with them about this in particular, it was reported to me as being deliberately intended that way (i.e., that the game randomly selects a number of appropriate targets within the radius, from all appropriate targets available within the radius), and that this is working as intended. I attempted to provide the feedback that this was simply not acceptable mechanically, but so far nothing has come of it.

There is, supposedly, a large spell and casting system rework in the works - no ETA - but I'm hoping that we'll see it launched at the same time as their long awaited reaction rework. We have no further concrete news as of yet.
Posted By: gaymer Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 08/08/22 07:57 AM
Originally Posted by Brainer
Another long-running issue that hasn't been addressed as of yet (and no doubt mentioned here several times already) is how multi-targeting is implemented for Bless, Bane, and upcast versions of spells that allow additional targets with higher level spell slots (e.g., Command (Halt)). It's unacceptable, frankly. Having almost no control over who gets the effect with something that consumes a resource and is a valuable tactical tool should absolutely not be that freaking awkward to use.
I've been on this crusade for a while.

It also affects things like Metamagic: Hold Person. The first time I tried to twin, I failed on the enemy and the second one (I can't control the target) succeeded on an ALLIED character.

Like, what the fuck? Not to mention your characters have to be grouped to get the bless and in a certain formation that you don't waste it.

It's not a fun optimal experience at all.
Posted By: gaymer Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 08/08/22 08:01 AM
Spell AoE radius for Moonbeam, Shatter, etc. are STILL off the tooltip outline and don't hit the highlighted enemies near the edges shown.

It's so disappointing to think you're going to hit 5 enemies and you only hit 3.

Or to lay a Moonbeam that is supposed to hit multiple and it hits no one. Also, isn't Moonbeam not supposed to deal damage initially when it's placed but starting on the opponents turn?

You can get 4d10 of free damage if the enemy goes directly after you and there's nothing they can do about it.
Posted By: gaymer Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 08/08/22 08:03 AM
The Witch Bolt animation looks awful, sorry. It looks like a glitch and not textured properly.

The Silence spell looks blatantly unfinished and lazy.

And using Entangle or Web just feels so bad. A fire arrow removes it and you've wasted a spell slot.
Posted By: Kendaric Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 08/08/22 08:41 AM
Originally Posted by gaymer
Or to lay a Moonbeam that is supposed to hit multiple and it hits no one. Also, isn't Moonbeam not supposed to deal damage initially when it's placed but starting on the opponents turn?

Moonbeam should deal damage on the opponent's turn. That's how the spell works in PnP at least
Posted By: 1varangian Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 14/08/22 09:24 AM
I think it's worth repeating that the AoE fire arrow / bomb / acid spit spam from enemies really messes up a lot of spells. In addition to just being generally really annoying when it's everywhere, constantly.

I've stopped using Concentration spells almost completely. You're just constantly rolling for concentration and usually these spells end before they do anything. The fact that Prone also (incorrectly) cancels Concentration is the final nail in the coffin. And the fact that enemies tend to jump directly to your spellcasters and tanks are unable to actually threaten them properly.

Because of the fire spam spells like Web and Grease also can't do their job. Every time I try these spells for crowd control fire appears and burns them away.

Can we cut back on the AoE spam and fix the Prone condition please?
Posted By: Volsalex Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 14/08/22 02:48 PM
Chromatic Orb is still not fixed with its reduced damage and forced surfaces. I even watched a case when using Chromatic Orb accidentally killed Findal (wounded druid in the underground passage) because of created surface, that was hilarious.

Larian, please give a toggle for Chromatic Orb that lets people pick between additional d8 of damage and current surface creation. This way, people who like either way of its implementation should be satisfied, as they can pick the preferred version.
Posted By: neprostoman Re: Focused Feedback: Spells - 14/08/22 02:57 PM
Originally Posted by Volsalex
Larian, please give a toggle for Chromatic Orb that lets people pick between additional d8 of damage and current surface creation. This way, people who like either way of its implementation should be satisfied, as they can pick the preferred version.

+1 Seems like a very elegant solution to me.
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