Joined: Mar 16, 2007
|Posted: Wed May 16, 2007 10:29 am Post subject: Focus Items ; Better than being a sorcerer!!!
Focus Items ; Better than being a sorcerer!!!
The generalist mage becomes a pseudo-sorcerer with just a few key “Focus Items”. You don’t need to become a sorcerer in order to be able to cast spells like one with the use of “Focus Items” as mentioned in the Dragon Magazine July 1986.
With these magic items any generalist mage can convert raw spell energy level for level into the spell (or spells) that are contained in the spellcasting matrix of the focus items. So they become better than a sorcerer capable of casting the focus item spell as many times a day as they have spell levels. Even a sorcerer has its limitations on the number of times that a spell could be cast, with a focus item the caster could be capable of converting their entire days spell selections into a spell affect of their focus items.
The focus item would allow for the channeling of 3 level 1 spells into a focus items that create a lightning bolt, and thereby the caster could emit the spell through the focus item. The use of a focus item will not necessarily require the normal material components required by a spell, as the device itself is infused with the necessary elements to emit the spell. The article mentions that V components should possibly be required, but S components are reduced, and M components could be removed if the focus item has no way to consume the M components in the casting. As to casting times themselves, I would have to disagree with the article, in its idea to shorten C/T of the spells. I think the spell should require the same concentration, and would suggest that the caster of the spell mentally go through the casting motions in their mind as a requirement of the use of the spell focus. This brings us to the final point, in that a user of a focus item would have to “know” the spell in the focus to use the item. If they found a focus item but didn’t know the spell therein, they would have to learn it through other means.
The focus item can’t store power, cast magic other than mage type, and the spells cast by the focus item always act as if cast by the holder of the item (i.e. at their level). So a magic wand focus of fireballs would emit a fireball at its casters level (not a 6 die fireball as most wands are limited to). The holder of a focus item can not use magic above their normal level limits.
As the article mentions the spell caster with a focus item containing some key offensive spell like fireball, lightning bolt, or cone of cold could have an advantage when selecting their days spell choices. They could expand their spell choices for each day, but know that if challenged by outside forces they could be able to cast the offensive spells at need.
The power of a focus item can go far beyond this though. The article fails to mention the use of focus items to create magic spells/affects that have permanent durations. A simple spell like Continual Light could allow a caster to light up a town/village with their excess spell energy from a couple of days. This could become a secondary job for such a spell caster.
Furthermore, if a spell caster were in the service of a local lord a spell like Stoneskin could be offered to all of a local garrison over time, and thereby make even the lowliest soldier immune to a number of blows before damage sets in.
The spell Avoidance could be used by a mage to set up security services on portals & apertures to provide repulsion of all who try to pass into such areas.
Then you have the construction mage who uses their focus item to use a Wall of Iron or Wall of Stone in their endeavors. You can see that even this small selection of spells would yield a great variety of potential use of the focus item to use up the spell energy a caster could have in a day.
Then you have the ability, as detailed in the article, to be able to find/create focus items that have linked spell affects in the same device. How about that construction mage’s focus item having both of the wall spells and also a dig & move earth spell linked to it. Or maybe rock to mud. You can see that there are a vast number of combinations to use.
Now with the normal spells alluded to I would like to mention the plethora of spells that could be applied to such focus items. This could range from favorites of mine like Silent Accord (Lv 7 See my best spells post) to spells like Remote Access (Lv 5 also in my best spells post), The Silent Accord spell would even allow a failed casting to have the affect of allowing the next magic of that caster to successfully affect a creature. The Remote Access could allow a fighter mage to set up a running combat that would have attacks on their enemies coming from every angle and location.
Another fine addition is to do research into the magic of the FR13 Anauroch desert mages spell Sand Gems. The knowledge you seek is the creation of a regular mage spell that mimics the Lv 7 Anauroch spell Sand Gems. This spell will create 1-12 real permanent real, permanent, cut, and polished gems with simple sand as the component. These gems are each worth 1d6 x 1000gp total. This spell would give a spellcaster the ability to generate wealth at will, although one could easily flood a market and thereby reduce gemstone prices in a region. Of course discreet application of gem sales over a larger area could avoid much of this problem.
These are just two spells (from the Dragon Magazine) & one from an official released spell. There are other spells out there that would be highly useful in a focus item. Take at look at my best spells posts for other spells that are worthy of the time and costs of making a focus item for them too.
One thing the article doesn’t allude to though is the manner of creation of such items, short of mentioning that it could be flawed normal magic item creation. I think that after the first such device was discovered, that others would find ways to create more of these useful tools. . This is my take on the idea, so feel free to make changes as you see fit. The entire operation is of course cast under and enchant an item spells guidelines in a special spell circle.
I would make the creation process the same as normal magic items, but the placing of the spells in the device would require one scroll (of the desired spell(s)) for each level of the spell being placed in the device. Also the creation process would require one component set up for each level of the spell to be placed in the device. Now the focus item itself would have to be of the highest quality of course regardless of the level of the spell to be placed in the device. When all is gathered together 1000 gp of diamond dust and 2 oz of sulfur are sprinkled over the grouped materials (scrolls, components, and focus items). Then the spell polymorph any object is cast over the mixed items. The caster then can alter the focus item as they see fit (making it more nondescript if desired). Then the resultant device would have the spell(s) of the focus cast on it a number of times equal to the level of the spell so that it is imprinted on the device. Then the permanent spell is added as normal.
Not a bad method, and more costly and time consuming for the caster of higher level spell in the devices.
In closing the article mentions that higher level casters would possibly have 3-5 of these items available in their magic items. These casters would be more likely to survive and thrive than those who lacked such a useful set of items.
Now your excess spell energy every day could be channeled into a useful affect that lasts the lifetime of the mage.
So what do you think of “Focus Items”?
Blood and souls for my lord Arioch!!!!!!!
So let it be written,
So let it be done!!
Let them keep what they kill!!