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In games where spell casting is a skill roll do you...


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In games where all spell casting (combat and non-combat spells) require a skill roll, do you (as a GM) apply the "Combat Conditions" skill roll modifiers (-1 to -3) to the Player's Magic skill rolls during combat?  

 

If not, and I assume most people will say no (I never have in many years of Gm'ing, but have been re-reading the skill book lately and this question came to mind) it basically means they get the "Combat Ready" Talent for free for their magical skills.

 

Is this unfair to other Player's who want to use some skills during combat who have to take the modifier or purchased the talent? 

Does it make the RSR Limitation not as limiting for combat spells because they aren't acting like a normal skill? Should the limitation for RSR be lowered by 1/4 or 1/2 for magic skills that are only going to be used in combat to make up for this? Or should specifically combat spells be not allowed to take RSR at all? Or is it just a matter of telling/reminding Players ahead of of starting the campaign that if they take RSR on spells (whether by choice or by how the spell system working in the game) that they will be subject to the combat skills roll modifiers, so they know before playing what will be happening. 

 

On the other-hand, in campaigns where each type of magic is its own "school" and has it's own associated skill (which is quite a few systems from what I see online and in the books) then requiring the player to buy a 2 point talent for each can become quite expensive on top of the cost of buying each skill separately (which is usually already done to try and somewhat limit the power levels of magic users by making them pay for numerous different skills to cast spells of all types). 

 

Thoughts? Opinions? Experiences? 

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Good questions, but I cant help you, I'm afraid.

 

Ive nwver played any game where being,in combat wasnr a negarive modidier to everything except shooting and avoiding getting shot.

 

In the case of spell casting, well it affected that, too.  Casting magic Kickbutt is different from aiming magic Kickbutt, after all.

 

 

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Never used it, and rarely put negative modifiers on skills in stress situations. I had it done to me in a situation where the characters could not sleep, and nearly resulted in a TPK in Hero, so I’d rather not subject my players to that. RSR on magic is at the ragged edge of too much calculation, and too many die rolls to keep things moving, but if the magic requires it, but I made it a flat roll, as it was in the FH playtest, rather than impose negatives due to spell power in the later editions. I do this to keep things moving, and I myself am math-traded and math phobic, so Everythingbis usually static rolls other than combat modifiers. 

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I never heard of the combat conditions modifiers before for Spellcasting.  So no I never used them. And considering how low usually skill rolls are, I wouldn’t add them into the mix. We do use the -1 per 10 ACT, and that’s punishment enough. I did recently read where you can take extra time to add a bonus to you roll which we used. (I’m generous that even using a Full Phase on a Spell that is normally Half Phase still grants a +1).

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1 hour ago, Ninja-Bear said:

 We do use the -1 per 10 ACT, 

 

See?  No one plays the same game, no matter how many more rules get packed into the game.   :lol:    I don't use that particular option.

 

The same way E assumes learning magic involves combat training (which, I confess, put some really amusing images in my head trying to combine "let's build a road through this swamp, but we'll need to add some combat practice" and "okay, these guys are here to fire cannon, whack you with sticks, push you around, and throw spears.  No matter how difficult that is, do _not_ let them get pregnant" from the other thread   :rofl:  .  Again, because it seems to be the only way people communicate anymore:  _not_ sarcasm.  I'm trying to share two brain pictures that gave me a good laugh),   I have always assumed--

 

No; that's not right.  It's not an assumption, per se;  it's part of several of my magic systems over the years:  magic users learn the spell.  That is they practice the spell, and they get better with the spell, and they (eventually, through experience), are able to create and cast larger, more powerful and variant versions of the spell.  Ultimately, it means there's no place for that particular option in the bulk of my magic systems.  In some, yes-- particular in the ones where I want to keep magic tightly regulated and on a level akin to a non-magical person having a really, _really_ good sword.

 

 

1 hour ago, Ninja-Bear said:

I did recently read where you can take extra time to add a bonus to you roll which we used. (I’m generous that even using a Full Phase on a Spell that is normally Half Phase still grants a +1).

 

 

Now this I've always done-- I mean like since we started using Champions to emulate other genres.  It's part of the basic rules, and it never occurred to me that there might be a situation where it would _not_ apply to using a skill or taking a shot or whatever.  I _do_ make one exception, and that is the Extra Time Limitation

 

[digression: for magic, rather than calling it "Extra Time," I usually flavor it with descriptive titles such as "Ritual"  or "Complex Gestures" or "Component Arrangement" and things like that.  Yes; they are pretty much just "Extra Time," but for me, it's like naming Powers (and Spells), and I like the flavor.  Players seem to get into it, as well, with comments like "I start pouring my sulphur on the nearest stone and tracing the Seven Sigils"  instead of "I throw up the earth barrier spell for next Phase."

 

:)

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47 minutes ago, Duke Bushido said:

The same way E assumes learning magic involves combat training (which, I confess, put some really amusing images in my head trying to combine "let's build a road through this swamp, but we'll need to add some combat practice" and "okay, these guys are here to fire cannon, whack you with sticks, push you around, and throw spears.  No matter how difficult that is, do _not_ let them get pregnant" from the other thread   :rofl:  .  Again, because it seems to be the only way people communicate anymore:  _not_ sarcasm.  I'm trying to share two brain pictures that gave me a good laugh),   

You know, it's interesting because I was actually thinking about this for my upcoming setting. Anyone who trains to be a mage with general offense and defense spells likely learned either at a place where they taught the basics of combat as well OR they have been in the world long enough acting like they know what they are doing to have learned in the school of hard knocks. If a player wanted to play otherwise I would certainly allow it and it might provide some amusing anecdotes. I'd actually encourage it, since this is would be strictly for roleplay reasons.

 

On the other hand, the village water mage (a different example of the "utility" mage) who is accustomed to finding new water sources, purifying water or maybe best case creating minor water constructs for labor purposes is NOT going to be ready to do these things in combat. If this comes up with a PC, I will apply the penalties until they either buy the skill or I judge them to have had enough trial by fire to make it needless (probably several months).

 

And the common person who might know a cantrip to tidy a room or light a fire, etc. is not going to have that type of skill and will likely not even remember that they have it as the frantically run from the scene. And that's even assuming there was some creative use they could find for the cantrip in combat.

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Logically there should be combat penalties, but I never use them for a couple reasons.  First, it just makes combat that much more complicated and slow, and that is the last thing combat needs.

 

Second, most of my players buy up their skill roll to a point they are comfortable with.  If they want to have a 15 or less success chance typically, they buy the skill roll up that high.  If as GM I typically impose a penalty of -2 in combat, they will just buy it up to 17 or less to compensate, so really it just becomes an additional expense spell casters have to take, and one that will probably just irritate them.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

It depends (as do so many things around here) on the build, the campaign assumptions, etc. I don’t use them at their core, however, if someone has been shot, is suppressed, etc., then I will add additional modifiers as necessary, but broadly, no. In a game with so many modifiers in every stage, anything that adds complexity without adding flavor I tend to skip.

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