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Avian
23-02-2010, 11:49
Some years ago, I wrote a little rule system supplement called the Winds of Magic (http://www.avianon.net/rules/winds_of_magic.php).

This is but one example of semi-random magic dice generation. This differs from the current system (which is strictly based on the levels of wizards in your army) in that the magic dice you get in each player's magic phase is mainly based on a random roll, but the number of Wizards you in your army has an effect on this, but it is less than getting an extra dice per wizard level.

Thus some elements are random and some depend on what is in your army.

There are many ways of making a semi-random magic dice generation system and they don't have to be much like my system at all.

Imagine, if you like, that you are told that the 8th edition rulebook will have some form of semi-random magic dice generation system.
[Note: NOT IDENTICAL TO MINE]
What would you hope it would be like?
[NOTE: MUST BE SEMI-RANDOM]

ukko
23-02-2010, 12:18
To pick up on the point from before, I think this system could be absolutely fantastic if
1. Casters can choose spells, rather than roll for them, i.e. a lv2 gets to choose 2 when the list is written (not before each individual game mind). This would allow people to integrate magic into the build of their army, reduce note-taking and fluff-wise, it just makes sense. In this way you could have specific mages dedicated to specific roles, e.g. a beast tamer mage on foot with cowers and bear's, an astronomer comet-summoner, a dakka mage with fireball and burning head, etc. Maybe an added rule that the first spell has to be the default spell of that lore?
2. the ability to throw any number of dice at a spell. This one's been rumoured by a number of sources but wouldn't actually be as important if you could choose spells I reckon
3. a one-scroll-per caster limitation, because otherwise a caddy will be TOO effective IMHO

Condottiere
23-02-2010, 12:19
If I understand the system correctly, the Dispeller gets the middle value dice from a casting of three die; I know for a fact I would certainly stock up on Scrolls in case of anomalies, which have a distressing tendency to occur.

Gaargod
23-02-2010, 12:30
I quite like the idea, but it has a few problems. As Condottiere pointed out, middle values might be disproportionately low (6,1,1 means the dispelling player is screwed. I realize odds are low but even so...). People bitch about scrolls now, imagine how bad it would be?

However, i do feel that if items/choices which generate an extra dispel dice work, so should items which generate an extra power dice. You know, fairness and all.

Also, semi-random is one thing, but this basically beats magic heavy to death with a big stick. Realistically, there's little reason i should take a magic heavy army over one with a good defense (case in point, couple of cheap caddies will severely irritate all but the very heaviest of armies).

Urgat
23-02-2010, 12:42
Well, I already mentionned what I'd want before, but I'll do it again.

The fluff is that magic is generated by the winds of magic, so it's not the wizards that should generate the dies. So, in short, people get to use what magic winds are available in the area. Now, fluffwise, you should get more spells compared to the size of the table, but of course it's neither handy nor simple so, instead, we use points to "simulate" the size of the battlefield. So, depending on the size of the battlefield (or points played), you get a corresponding amount of dies.

I'm giving random numbers here, but let's say you can get 1D3 PD/DD per 500 points. So, you'd get 1D3 (I insist again, the D3 figure is an exemple, I don't know if it would be the best, I never really tested it) PD/DD at 500 points, 2D3 at 1000, 3D3 at 1500, etc.

Then you can stack modifiers on it. For instance, the player with the most power levels (say, a HE player has a Lvl4 wizard and a lvl 2, versus an OK player who only got two lvl2 butchers, so the HE has more) would get a +1 or something. You could also (it's just idead thrown in the air) have it so that each player rolls his own dies, and each player uses his own result, or that it's the highest result used for foth players, or that only the player who's playing this turn rolls, dunno. Of course, since they don't generate PD anymore, wizards would either need a price cut (but considering you'd need to redo all the armybooks, bof...) or get some kind of other advantage to justify their current cost.

Got on idea there, in fact. When you wanna cast a spell (or dispel), the level of the wizard would be taken into account to show how good he is at handling magic. An exemple to make it clear:
Lvl1 shaman versus lvl 3 shaman in a battle at 500 points (to justify the lvl 3, let's say we have the 25% character deal with no other restriction).
I'll use what I proposed before, so the lvl 1 get 1D3(battle size), and the lvl3 1D3+1(for having more power level). i'll say it's the playing player who rolls for PD/DD. He rolls the D3, and gets 2. So he gets 2PD, the other player gets 3DD.

The lvl 1 shaman wanna cast gaze of Mork (5+). He rolls his two PD, gets 7, to which he adds his level, so 8. Success! The lvl 3 shaman rolls his two PD too (obviously), but only gets 5, to which he adds his own level, for a total of 8. Dispell success!

Next turn, it's lvl3 shaman's turn to cast. For simplicities sake, he's also going to throw all his dice at gaze. He rolls the dice, gets 1, so he gets 2PD, and the opponent gets 1DD. Lvl3 tries to cast with his two PD, gets 7, two which he adds his level, so he gets 10. The lvl 1 here is quite screwed, he can't get more than 7 anyway, so casting is successful.

Yeah, that really helps the lvl3 here of course, so maybe ditching the +1PD for having more power levels would be better. But anyway, having a Lvl3 at 500 points is not possible (silly me, that's way over 25% :p), and, regardless, the player wouldn't have any other character, while with a lvl1, the other player could easily fit another shaman, or up to two naked goblin bosses (or, if he's sensible, a reasonably equiped shaman and a reasonably equiped boss).

Well my explanation is probably not perfect, and my exemple ends up being silly, but I hope I it was clear enough still?

edit: I also quite liked the idea of not choosing spells randomly, but instead paying for them like if they were upgrades.

dhallnet
23-02-2010, 12:45
Yours seems ok.
Any alternative I can find for distributing power/dispell dice is basically the old card system but with dice instead.

I think the mechanics were good in this aspect, maybe a bit longer than it should but it was the cards fault. Without them I can't see the magic phase beeing much longer than now.

Selecting spells could be ok, but if GW want to increase their effects on games, I am not sure if it would be a good move. I think some spells shouldn't be duplicated in an army (or they should only have a slim chance to be).

Removing limitation on the number of dice per casting attempt make perfect sense.

And maybe I could see dispell scrolls in another magic items category (enchanted) instead of arcanes items and limited to one per character.

Avian
23-02-2010, 12:54
Also, semi-random is one thing, but this basically beats magic heavy to death with a big stick. Realistically, there's little reason i should take a magic heavy army over one with a good defense (case in point, couple of cheap caddies will severely irritate all but the very heaviest of armies).
Well, if magic heavy is beaten to death with a heavy stick, so to say, and you are limited to max 25% characters, would you really bother spending close to half of that on taking a couple of scroll caddies?

Deathjester
23-02-2010, 13:03
Well you have to include in this if you can take a max % points of characters:

D3 dispel dice upto wizard level would be quite interesting...
This would mean that level 2 wizards could generate 2 dispel dice, which they can't right now and level 3/4 wizards could get 3, however with no (or 1 (2 for Dwarfs)) dispell dice for the army this shouldn't get too out of hand (especially with max %age characters)

However such a system would be good for magic defence to be reasonably standard...

Generating power dice on the otherhand is quite difficult not to break with the inclusion of a lot of wizards

D6 upto wizard level + D3 would be interesting, so it would make level 4's a little less reliable and level 1or2 wizards very reliable in the number of dice generated so this would give a similar theoretical maximum as now, however the minimum dice would be pretty horrifically bad.

This system is a little more fair than a system which doesn't require you to take a wizard to generate 2D6 power dice (which can be used to dispel RIP spells). (The Winds of Magic type system.)

Avian
23-02-2010, 13:07
Well you have to include in this if you can take a max % points of characters:
Fair point.

But regardless, if magic heavy is 'beaten to death', would you want to spend 2 hero choices (current system) and ~10% of your army points total (any system) on a pair of scroll caddies?

Desert Rain
23-02-2010, 13:25
I've been thinking about a system that look like this:

At the beginning of the magic phase you roll 2D6 and get that number as your power dice. The opponent gets the higher of the dice as his dispel dice.
To this number you also add any bonuses from magical items etc.

Ex: You roll a 4 and a 5 and thus get 9 PD while your opponent gets 5 DD for that magic phase.

These dice may only be used if the player has at least 1 wizard or runesmith/lord in his army.

When you cast spells you pick any number of dice (up to your total number of course).

You add your caster level to both casting and dispelling attempts.

Dispel scrolls and power stones are 1/caster.

A wizard knows a number of spells equal to his level.
Level 1 wizards may chose from the first 3 spells of the lore.
Level 2 wizards may chose from the first 4 spells of the lore.
Level 3 wizards may chose from the first 5 spells of the lore
Level 4 wizards may chose any four spells from the lore.

I've never tested this in an actual game and it is just something I have been thinking about for a while, but I think it can work quite well.

Deathjester
23-02-2010, 13:27
Fair point.

But regardless, if magic heavy is 'beaten to death', would you want to spend 2 hero choices (current system) and ~10% of your army points total (any system) on a pair of scroll caddies?

Not at all, it would be nice not to have to, however you do have to allow for all of the army books when working out how this is going to work...

As you can't generate a random number of dispel dice for an army based on points total and then have an Rune Lord still adding +2 dice to the total...

As that just wouldn't be fair on other armies.

And you can't re-write in the core rule book that it overwrites the Army Book (as both the Army Book and the Rulebook state that rules in the Army Books over-ride the rules in the Core Rulebook.

So assuming you're method of generating dice: Dwarves at 2000pts would get the middle D6 + Rune Lord + Anvil + 2 Runesmiths (and this is possible inside 500pts) that would give them between (assuming your example)

In a 2,500 pt game three D6 are rolled, giving a 6, a 4 and a 2. The active player then gets 6 + 2 = 8 Power Dice, while the other player gets 4 + 1 = 5 Dispel dice. This is regardless of how many wizards a player has.

But a dwarf army would get 10 dispel dice... Vs 8 power dice.
Ok assuming on the exremities of this Active player rolls triple 6's so gets 13 power dice, but the defending dwarf player would get 12 dispel which means that this is the ONLY occasion where the active player gets more power dice than the dwarf player has dispel dice.

And you even included that in your own build. I think that this easily overpowers dwarfs and some empire builds (taking Warrior Priests and Arch Lectors becomes a no-brainer).

And this is not really what you want to happen. So you NEED to include magic levels at some point in the dice generation process, other wise these stock generating armies could run away with stuff.

theunwantedbeing
23-02-2010, 13:32
My own idea of how to do it

Powerdice as normal.
1 per mage level.
Mages start the game with these dice, these are not replenished each turn.

Winds of magic is 2d6+2 dice, distributed to each casting mage. (1D6 per thousand points)
Remaining dice are then split evenly between players in a pool, the odd dice goes to the casting player.

Casting is done as is currently.
Dispelling is done by drawing out dice from casting attempts by mages chosen by the dispelling player. This is limited to upto 1 per level 1-2 mage, upto 2 for levels 3-4 over the course of that particular magic phase.

These dice are then converted into powerdice the following turn. (as they are power drawn from opposing spells). Rather than mages replenishing their store of dice each turn, they can only replenish them by choosing to store excess dice in a given turn, or by attempting to dispel enemy spells.

Probably better for rules development of course, but its a rough idea of what the new magic phase could be like if a winds of magic system was implemented.
Doesnt favour magic heavy too much and also means you cannot burn through your dice too quickly, as they're much harder to replenish.

It's quite simple as well.
Makes sense in my mind anyway.

Miscasts need to be altered of course.
The double 1 result needs to be a template blast over the head of the mage, as he's exploding!

Avian
23-02-2010, 13:36
In a 2,500 pt game three D6 are rolled, giving a 6, a 4 and a 2. The active player then gets 6 + 2 = 8 Power Dice, while the other player gets 4 + 1 = 5 Dispel dice. This is regardless of how many wizards a player has.

But a dwarf army would get 10 dispel dice... Vs 8 power dice.
Remember that this is discounting dice retained from the Dwarf "magic" phase.

Spiney Norman
23-02-2010, 13:53
Some years ago, I wrote a little rule system supplement called the Winds of Magic (http://www.avianon.net/rules/winds_of_magic.php).

This is but one example of semi-random magic dice generation. This differs from the current system (which is strictly based on the levels of wizards in your army) in that the magic dice you get in each player's magic phase is mainly based on a random roll, but the number of Wizards you in your army has an effect on this, but it is less than getting an extra dice per wizard level.

Thus some elements are random and some depend on what is in your army.

There are many ways of making a semi-random magic dice generation system and they don't have to be much like my system at all.

Imagine, if you like, that you are told that the 8th edition rulebook will have some form of semi-random magic dice generation system.
[Note: NOT IDENTICAL TO MINE]
What would you hope it would be like?
[NOTE: MUST BE SEMI-RANDOM]

I very much like the idea, I'm just very skeptical that it can be made to work for warhammer 8th Edition. The problem isn't just creating the system, its making it work with the current range of army books, which we are continually reassured will still all be playable.

The problem is that all 7th Edition wizards have been costed for the followin
1. The spells they know - based on their level, between 1 and 4 notwithstanding abilities like master of sorcery or focus of mystery
2. The power dice they generate
3. The dispel dice they generate
4. Their physical stats
5. Special abilities (i.e Bretonnian damsels conferring magic resistance etc)

Of those 4 components, the fourth is probably the least effectual, at the end of the day (greater daemons aside) few wizards are designed to make full use of his stats in combat. The main reason wizards are so expensive is dice generation. If we are going to replace the standard system with a random equivilent this is the main problem we have to overcome, wizards are essentially only there because they know spells, they don't make your power level any greater and they don't make your dispel ability any more potent.

This is mitigated somewhat by the ability in Avian's system to move dice around, but that is not dice generation, its making one phase more effective at the direct expense of the other. You've essentially lost out in the casting phase in order to increase your dispel ability or vice versa, in any case the net effect is zero gain.

There needs to be something that makes it more attractive to plough premium points into the higher level wizards, otherwise people will just not take them. For that reason I think letting people choose their spells is a bad move. It removes one of the primary reasons for taking a higher level wizard - the increased chance of getting the spells you want.

One thing I think might work well.
In any given turn a wizard can only attempt to cast or attempt to dispel a number of spells equal to his current level. In the wizard's casting phase this is obvious as he only knows a number of spells equal to his level, but it would help solve the problem of the Vampire Lord that attempts to raise zombies 5-6 times a turn.

A dispel attempt is defined as either rolling dispel dice from your pool in an attempt to dispel an enemy spell or reading a dispel scroll. You can still only make a maximum of one dispel attempt per spell cast by the enemy.

So in their dispel phase a level 2 could attempt to stop up to 2 spells by reading one scroll and making an attempt to dispel one spell using dice (or any combination of the two). Whereas a level 4 could attempt to stop 4 spells as long as he had enough dice/scrolls to do so. For the sake of debate we'll say TK Liche Priests and dwarf rune smiths count as level 2, while their Lord level counterparts count as level 4s. This is based on the reasoning that while wizards may not generate dispel ability in themselves, their magical training is still required to use the background magic to thwart enemy spells, the more skilled the wizard, the better they are at fighting off unfriendly sorceries.

That way we're not jut discouraging high end magic (by limiting available power dice), but also discouraging low end magic "refusal"

a18no
23-02-2010, 14:06
I like that mage generate their own dice. But the 2 bases dices could be replace with random.

Like 2D6, the higher for the caster plus 1 dice for each lvl of mage
the lower dice for defender, plus 1 for each 2 lvl of magic (like now).

Maybe i could replace the 2D6 with 2D3.

Spiney Norman
23-02-2010, 14:15
I like that mage generate their own dice. But the 2 bases dices could be replace with random.

Like 2D6, the higher for the caster plus 1 dice for each lvl of mage
the lower dice for defender, plus 1 for each 2 lvl of magic (like now).

Maybe i could replace the 2D6 with 2D3.

2D3 would be much better, the 2D6 method would make magic considerably more unbalanced than it is now.

Condottiere
23-02-2010, 14:20
If Wizards operate as batteries with a slow recharge, it would change the dynamics. You would have to really decide when to unleash that power, guess wrong and your magical goose is cooked.

Sygerrik
23-02-2010, 14:47
I really like the idea of Wizard Level contributing only to # of spells known and casting value. It makes very little fluff sense that a level 1 Fire Wizard in the Empire army (a trainee or dabbler) would have the same chance of successfully casting a Fireball as Teclis himself.
I'd say D6 +2 PD, +1 for each wizard of 1st or 2nd level, +2 for each wizard for 3rd or 4th level. Enemy gets DD on the same system, but caster level is not added to dispel attempts (of course, HE still get +1, and Scrolls should be a one-use item that adds +4 to your dispel roll).

The total number of dice you can "safely" handle equals the # of wizard levels you have on the field. Any more than that, and miscasts are much more likely-- either miscast on any double but double 6, or miscast if any of the "extra" dice roll a 1 (like gobbo mushroom dice).

Example is in order. A Vampire army has a level 3 and two level 1s. They are facing a Lizardmen army with a level 4. The Vampire player rolls a d6 and gets a 4. He has a mighty 10 power dice this turn. The Lizardmen player rolls a 5. He has 9 dispel dice. The Vampire player's level 3 wizard attempts to cast Gaze of Nagash and rolls two dice. He gets a 7, which is added to his +3, and succeeds! The Lizardmen player attempts to dispel and throws two dispel dice. He gets a 7, which is lower than the Vampire player's modified 10. He then pulls out a dispel scroll, adds +4 to his total, and dispels the spell. A bit later in the magic phase, the Vampire player has used 4 of his 10 dice. He decides to throw two dice at Invocation of Nehek. He uses two different dice to show that one is a "risk die." They come up a 3 and a 4, success. Had the "risk die" rolled a one, it would have been a miscast.

The SkaerKrow
23-02-2010, 15:11
Going from the 3D6, highest to casting player, middle dice to dispelling player system...

Wizards generate no additional Power Dice, Wizard Lords generate a single extra dice. Wizards and Wizard Lords are both limited by the current restrictions for the number of dice that they may allocate to a single casting. Additionally, Wizards choose one spell per level from their Lore instead of generating them randomly.

Wizards generate no additional Dispel Dice. Wizard Lords generate a single extra dice. Wizards may attempt to dispel a single spell each turn, Wizard Lords may attempt to dispel two spells each turn. The amount of dice that a Wizard may use when attempting to dispel a spell is equal to their Level plus two. Armies may attempt to dispel any number of spells without the use of a Wizard, but may only commit two dice to the attempt. Dwarf Runesmiths count as Level One Wizards for dispel purposes, while Runelords count as Level Three Wizard Lords. No other non-Wizards count for these purposes (including Empire Warrior Priests).

It needs playtested, but that would be my general idea for a new magic system.

Spiney Norman
23-02-2010, 15:15
I like all of that except for "Armies may attempt to dispel any number of spells without the use of a Wizard". Not remotely appropriate or fitting with the fluff, I don't want to see armies totally refusing to spend points on magic and still managing to stave off the bulk of enemy spells

The SkaerKrow
23-02-2010, 15:46
Remember, without use of a Wizard, they're stuck rolling two dice to dispel each spell. That makes it hard to contend with "bigger" spells. Armies like Vampires, Dark Elves, Warriors of Chaos and Lizardmen also have ways of generate dice above and beyond their "natural" quotient, which means that they have a good chance of exhausting their opponent's dispel pool in order to get a clear shot at casting essential spells.

Znail
23-02-2010, 16:11
One solution to some of those problems would be if the difficulty to dispell was modified by the diffrence in caster vs dispellers levels. Thus you could dispell with no wizards but you would have a 1-4 penalty from the casting wizards level. It would also give a reason to bringing hgher level wizards.

Spiney Norman
23-02-2010, 17:36
I really don't like the idea of armies with no wizards/runesmiths/priests being able to even attempt dispel. If a wizard successfully casts a spell, then its already out there headed towards its intended target, theres no sensible reason why it should dissipate without some opposing magician, even a low level one, working against it somehow.

I also think its logical to work on the principle that players can only access the power pool if they bring a wizard and they should only be able to access the dispel pool in the same way. Its the only possible way to get people to pay for their magic defense, if not I could just run an army with no wizards, use my free dispel ability to stave off the worst of the enemy magic and use the points I would have spent on wizards somewhere else. If we're balancing the game we should be making it more attractive for people to take wizards, not more attractive not to.

At the end of the day, I feel that everyone should have to pay something for their magic defense, just as everyone pays something for their magic offense.

Pacorko
23-02-2010, 17:44
Well, I already mentionned what I'd want before, but I'll do it again.

The fluff is that magic is generated by the winds of magic, so it's not the wizards that should generate the dies.

This is where I find a minor fault on your reasoning.

A better wizard has the hard-earned ability to store/use/absorb more ambience magical power, so... they should still be able to be more effective/efficient (read "helpful") to their army in that deparment.

That's reads fluffy to me.

I'd say that for semi-randomness with a strong hint of "fluff" while generating magic, at the start of each magic phase, each wizard adds one die for each of his levels, rolls and gets to add any that rolled 4+ to the PD pool. Repeat for the DD only adding those that rolled 5+ (or even pure 6s).... and there we have our spellcasting/countering dice generated in a semi-random, fluff-compliant fashion. Or so my reasoning would go.

Then, I would force a Dispel Scroll roll to see if it was succesfully used: A DS yields half a spell's points cost automatically--rounded down--and the dispeller then rolls one die (free) or two dice (the second taken from the DD pool) to complete the countering manoeuvre.

This stops DS from being surefire items, and makes every low-level wizard something more than a mere Scrollcaddy, all the while giving them a chance to counter biggies and having potent enemies exhausting their opponent's DD pool.

Still reads all fluff-compliant. Might be the caffeine kicking in, though. :p

Urgat
23-02-2010, 18:06
This is where I find a minor fault on your reasoning.

A better wizard has the hard-earned ability to store/use/absorb more ambience magical power, so... they should still be able to be more effective/efficient (read "helpful") to their army in that deparment.

Yes, that's why their level helps them cast/dispel easier in my system.

Skyros
23-02-2010, 18:09
I don't really see the attraction to random or semi-random magic dice generation. If the focus is to remove wizards as the primary method of generating magic dice, they could do that without it having to be random.

I think magic needs fewer random elements, not more. For example, I really think the 'random roll for spells' bit needs to go. Let wizards pick from the first X spells in the list where X is their level +2 or something.

Skyros
23-02-2010, 18:11
I really don't like the idea of armies with no wizards/runesmiths/priests being able to even attempt dispel. If a wizard successfully casts a spell, then its already out there headed towards its intended target, theres no sensible reason why it should dissipate without some opposing magician, even a low level one, working against it somehow.

I also think its logical to work on the principle that players can only access the power pool if they bring a wizard and they should only be able to access the dispel pool in the same way. Its the only possible way to get people to pay for their magic defense, if not I could just run an army with no wizards, use my free dispel ability to stave off the worst of the enemy magic and use the points I would have spent on wizards somewhere else. If we're balancing the game we should be making it more attractive for people to take wizards, not more attractive not to.

At the end of the day, I feel that everyone should have to pay something for their magic defense, just as everyone pays something for their magic offense.

I agree with this as well. The 'free' dispell dice people can get for free make taking just a single wizard pointless. Even if your opponent has invested no points in magic defence you aren't really going to accomplish anything.

CrystalSphere
23-02-2010, 18:22
I would like wizards picking their spells too, but not being able to change lore at the start of the game. The spells and lore chosen should be on the army list and you canīt change it. Dwarf warmachines canīt change their runes each game depending on who they fight for example. Iīd prefer less random in choosing spells but those that you choose you are stick with. This may make some of your spells better agaisnt some armies and worse agaisnt others, look, like magic items. Also from a fluff point of view i hate to see the celestial wizard become a bright wizard in the next game.

The SkaerKrow
23-02-2010, 18:30
One of the single biggest and most consistent complaints that I have heard about Warhammer is that you have to take Wizards in order to have any chance of combating magic, and that the advent of "scroll caddies" has been a massive detriment to the game. Needing a caster just to have an attempt to dispel spells at all simply exacerbates something that is already a problem.

The BRB, by the way, indicates that the latent dispel dice generated by armies in Warhammer comes from the fact that all things in the Warhammer World have to be somewhat resistant to magic, lest they be overwhelmed by Chaos, so there's really no lore-related excuse for armies not being able to dispel spells without a caster. Force of will and an innate resistance to the energies of Chaos go a long way.

enyoss
23-02-2010, 18:34
I don't want to come up with a new system myself, but just wanted to chime in to say that the system you developed seems pretty good on paper Avian :). I've not played with it mind, but from a first glance I'd be happy if it does turn out that 8th edition includes a similar system. Maybe your talents would be well suited to the Design Studio?... take a pay cut and dive in :p.

Skyros
23-02-2010, 18:42
One of the single biggest and most consistent complaints that I have heard about Warhammer is that you have to take Wizards in order to have any chance of combating magic, and that the advent of "scroll caddies" has been a massive detriment to the game.

I read that complaint differently - the complaint is that the wizard you buy is *just* a scroll caddy. People don't like buying a wizard that isn't going to do anything. This goes back to the nature of the 'all or nothing' 7th ed magic rules - which should change.

Obviously people should have to spend points on magic defense in order to get magic defense. Having to take wizards (or something else) in order to defend yourself from wizards isn't a bad thing.

I'd like to see the linking of magic offense with magic defense somewhat decoupled. If one guy brings fewer wizards than the other, he should still have a chance to get spells through.

Desert Rain
23-02-2010, 18:52
I don't really follow you there CrystalSphere.
Most people tend to swap around magic items/runes etc depending on whom they are facing. Except in a tournament setting of course.

Grey Mage
23-02-2010, 19:01
How would I do it?

Simple- Id use the current system, but there would be no difference between power and dispell dice.

At the beggining of each game turn, youd roll a d3, and add 1 per wizard *not wizard level* in your army, and add that to your total instead of the base 2 normally alotted. Wizard Lords might add a 2nd die, depending on playtesting.

Then, youd have to decide how much of that went into dispelling enemy magic, and how much of it went into powering your own spells- youd write it down before the compulsory movement phase, and reveal it in the magic phase.

Why? Because theres not much wrong with the system as is, but if people want a nice random element to it, this one wouldnt upset the balance to much and would still give a nice edge to armies who want to stay magic light be providing them with more dispell dice.

Condottiere
23-02-2010, 19:13
I don't really see the attraction to random or semi-random magic dice generation. If the focus is to remove wizards as the primary method of generating magic dice, they could do that without it having to be random.

I think magic needs fewer random elements, not more. For example, I really think the 'random roll for spells' bit needs to go. Let wizards pick from the first X spells in the list where X is their level +2 or something.Having a random and uncertain amount of PD available at the start of any turn, will be a disincentive to take along more Wizards/Levels than could accommodate the PD for spells.

CrystalSphere
23-02-2010, 19:31
I don't really follow you there CrystalSphere.
Most people tend to swap around magic items/runes etc depending on whom they are facing. Except in a tournament setting of course.

Yes i know, i donīt go to tournaments, but still i almost never change my list no matter who armies i am facing. I know that it puts you at a disadvantage, but i like the extra challenge of having to do the best with what you have, sort of force me to try and do the best rather than think "oh well i should have brought X instead of Y".

I enjoy working on a list (which takes me quite some time) that are able to put up a fight with all the armies, even when losing i like it because it makes you use the resources you have the best you can. But it is just my way of playing, i understand your point and it is completely fair. I usually donīt take much magic because of the randomness of the spells (i canīt base a strategy around using spells that i donīt know if i will even have) so i either go defensive or with the high elves i take the seer staff. I would really like magic to be less random at least in the spells, because i feel it is random enough with the wole casting/dispel/miscast thing.

Souppilgrim
23-02-2010, 19:40
I'm having a hard time finding a solution that doesn't make the books with already overpowered magic even more dominating in that phase, and the weaker magic armies even weaker.

Pacorko
23-02-2010, 22:46
Mine I don't see how it would make powerhouses even tougher, but I reckon it will certainly weaken the low-magic level ones... unless you decide to beef your magic to improve your chances, Souppilgrim.

Quid pro qou, as they say.

Besides any semi-random or completely random method will either enhance or hinder armies not matter what. What they do bring to the table is they just might give the weaker ones a fighting chance against magic heavy ones. Especially given that these systems are all cyclical meaning maybe one turn you are down on your luck, but the next one you see your opponent's cunning plans crumble as his super-posh HE wizzies manage to do absolutely squat... what with the winds of magic being as feeble with their lovers as they are, it's only logical and I'm sure would happen pretty often.

And still reads fluffy! So, no. It wasn't caffeine. Not sure if it's pure genius, but caffeine it ain't! :D

Spiney Norman
24-02-2010, 01:27
One of the single biggest and most consistent complaints that I have heard about Warhammer is that you have to take Wizards in order to have any chance of combating magic, and that the advent of "scroll caddies" has been a massive detriment to the game. Needing a caster just to have an attempt to dispel spells at all simply exacerbates something that is already a problem.

The BRB, by the way, indicates that the latent dispel dice generated by armies in Warhammer comes from the fact that all things in the Warhammer World have to be somewhat resistant to magic, lest they be overwhelmed by Chaos, so there's really no lore-related excuse for armies not being able to dispel spells without a caster. Force of will and an innate resistance to the energies of Chaos go a long way.
That is something they could write into the fluff I guess, but it would just appear weak and illogical to me (not to mention a direct assault on the uniqueness of the dwarf army which already IS resistant to magic). It wasn't innate resistance that has ever defeated Chaos in the past, its damn fine wizards sacrificing themselves to keep the forces of Chaos at bay in virtually every major daemonic incursion.

Even if you did decouple dispel ability from wizards, how would you make people channel points into it from their army?

Urgat
24-02-2010, 02:01
They don't need that in the fluff, for the simple reason that, fluffwise, wizards are quite rare. There's not 3 per armies, there's not even one per army. There's like one every twenty armies. So in that regard, having dispell method is not that important, most of the time.
Of course there's exceptions. There's "wizards" in most undead armies. But then again, undead armies themselves are quite rare in the fluff.
But ingame, everybody handily gets a wizard or three. You need something to counter that, and that's not the fluff that is going to help you when confronted with something that more or less goes against the fluff to begin with.

ChaosVC
24-02-2010, 03:10
Nice idea though a little more random than the GW version. TBH a magic dice game is already very random and this rule will make it even more random considering you are investing alot of points on a wizard char, not really to my liking.

But have you tried this with some test games with your gaming group, or any other gaming group. You might probably want some feedback with some tested games.

Wintersdark
24-02-2010, 04:24
Way back in the day, I played quite a few test games with Avian's WoM rules. I'm not sure if they've changed (it's a pain to look right now, I'm on my phone) but then, it worked shockingly well.

NOT choosing your spells is important. One of the major plissé to multiple wizards in that case (obviously in addition to dice retention) is better odds to get the spells you want, and/or to get multiples of spells you want more chances to cast (particularly in the case of the undead). With that said, even a single level two wizard has a reasonable chance to get a spell off in a round, and multiple ones almost certainly will.

I do think, moving to a system like this, that dispel scrolls and power stones should become one per army, and/or dispel scrolls should just provide +2 dispel dice for an attempt. With this system, all you can carry garanteed dispels is overkill.

Wintersdark
24-02-2010, 04:44
In regards to how these systems tend to somewhat disconnect casters from magicdefense and move more magic defense to being 'free':

the reality is that defending against magic is really nothing at all like defending against shooting. When constructing an army, considerations in regards to shooting defense may include:
- adding bulk to units to may panic tests less likely
- adding bulk to units to ensure SCR is still in your favour after sustaining casualties
- ensuring high leadership is available to troops likely to suffer panic tests
- fast cav/fliers/skirmishers to screen/hunt missile troops
- increasing your armies overall speed to get into the 'safety' of combat faster

Magic defense is much more complicated. As a rule, magic missiles are unimportant. They are effectively the same as shooting, and can be countered in the same way. So, an army built with shooting defense in mind is already protected from this to a degree.

Things get complicated, though, because magic is capable of exponentially more. Direct damage spells (with a few noteably exceptions) are basically the junk of magic. The real power is in movement and unit creation spells. Movement and postioning is what decides Fantasy games. The ONLY defense against these is points put explicitly into magic defense. More models in a unit do no good when your unit is immobilized and unable to support who you need it to support; charged in the flank by a unit that was either created or magically moved there, etc.

This is an important distinction.

All the adore mentioned shooting defenses? Even if your opponent brings no shooting - or no magic - still have very real value. Extra models provide outnumbering bonuses in combat and retain rank bonuses longer in drawn out fights, fast cav make excellent flankers, skirmishers and fliers can march block or act as sacrificial units to tie up strong combat troops. They are still valuable units, even when their primary role is unneeded.

Magic defense though... Dispel scrolls, your first wizard in the current magic system, they have NO value if your opponent does not bring a magic offense. The scrolls are wasted points, a single wizard will struggle to cast through even innate magic defense. Those points are basically just thrown away in every army. Right now, it's annoying but not that big a deal.

Moving forward however with a 25% character cap those baseline potentially useless magic defense points just serve to further limit your already highly restricted character pool.

Almost every army will still be able to spend extra points on magic defense, but the higher free baseline defense (particularly somewhat coupled with the opposing players offense in Avians system) serves to remove that extra tax.

Condottiere
24-02-2010, 09:33
The 25% cap will only benefit those who have cheap spellcasters, who can bring a larger selection of spells to the table, so it seems likely that there must be a major change change involved in the availability of PDs at any given level of play to keep it balanced.

Souppilgrim
24-02-2010, 16:14
Mine I don't see how it would make powerhouses even tougher, but I reckon it will certainly weaken the low-magic level ones... unless you decide to beef your magic to improve your chances, Souppilgrim.

Quid pro qou, as they say.

Besides any semi-random or completely random method will either enhance or hinder armies not matter what. What they do bring to the table is they just might give the weaker ones a fighting chance against magic heavy ones. Especially given that these systems are all cyclical meaning maybe one turn you are down on your luck, but the next one you see your opponent's cunning plans crumble as his super-posh HE wizzies manage to do absolutely squat... what with the winds of magic being as feeble with their lovers as they are, it's only logical and I'm sure would happen pretty often.

And still reads fluffy! So, no. It wasn't caffeine. Not sure if it's pure genius, but caffeine it ain't! :D

The books with access to lots of extra power dice from their lists, in the form of magic items, banners, 1 dice spam, etc, aren't going to be hurt as much. On the other side of the coin, armies that have balanced magic phases that aren't over the top will just have added randomness to an already questionable investment of points.

Pacorko
24-02-2010, 16:22
They don't need that in the fluff, for the simple reason that, fluffwise, wizards are quite rare. There's not 3 per armies, there's not even one per army. There's like one every twenty armies.

For what I've read so far, in army books and background texts, as well as official short stories and novels, that's your take on the matter. Nothing even begins to conform to what you write. Heck! Every major township or small city has at least one low-level practicioner.

The "Magic college" (Collegia Magica, I believe it's called) in Altdorf alone, that sort of tells us there's enough practicioners and wannabes so as to guarantee a huge structure dedicated solely for their training and furthering of the art. Mind you, that's just the Empire. Ulthuan has a powerful magical tradition... Vamp counts are all (in)famous for their command of magic, as are those Barbarians up North and the Butchers to the East. What about the gobbo shamans? Or the Orcs'?

As you might have guessed by now, I will strongly disagree with you. Magic is neither rare and nor are its "users"... It's an unwieldy, capricious and very dangerous affair, but not rare in the least. However, in the fluff, the very act of dispelling almost anything is quite difficult or demands tremendous extertion on the spellcaster's part.

So, as I said, making DS not surefire, instant effect items is a lot more fluffy, and makes it worthwhile to make the most out of every spellcaster a player might bring to the table... not just plain, boring and overcosted scroll caddies.


The books with access to lots of extra power dice from their lists, in the form of magic items, banners, 1 dice spam, etc, aren't going to be hurt as much. On the other side of the coin, armies that have balanced magic phases that aren't over the top will just have added randomness to an already questionable investment of points.

Ah! But you seem to have not read that I'm a firm propopent/adherent to the school of thought that states a dice cap should be imposed, determined by the size of the game which woudl immediately cut the sillyness to size.

Any "investment in points" is a risk and thus, questionable no matter how big or small. Slayers? Following your reasoning, on many occasions they don't kill enough points to make them "worthwhile".

But returning to Magic, the old mantra rings even more true: the higher the investment, the bigger the odds but the best return if all goes well.

All those armies with the thing you mention are going to be "hurt". Even if they get +1 die spam, they still get to determine how many PD and DD they will have available for their turn and they will get exactly those... plus one per magic user who contributes to the "spam". Sure, they can have all of them if the WoM are favourable, but then they still have to roll to cast--and miscast.. alas, Magic! So feeble a mistress you are! Then, next turn they get to see if the WoM are still that favourable to them.

That's why I am of the midn that both this method and the dice cap will make for less one-sided magic battles, while not taking the fun or overcomplicating the game's progress.