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Hellebore
01-01-2012, 12:55
we are playing a game with two wizards, well two and a half since the barbarian ended up with the crown of sorcery.

We have 5 characters in the party, barbarian, elf, dwarf and two wizards.

We are finding that the game doesn't seem to function very well with two wizards as they keep casting their spells whenever they want, sniping kills and so on.

Then there's the freeze spell. It sounds fairly inoccuous but it's actually a horribly unbalanced spell. The effect it produces increases almost exponentially with each number of the die: 1 damage, then 4, then 9, 16, 25, 36.

Now with 2.5 mages all with freeze we routinely see rooms full of trolls and minotaurs shatter away to nothing in a single round, often in an actual room where none of the characters get a turn because the monsters are put in at the beginning of the monster phase (so basically only the mages can do anything).

This last game saw giant scorpions, spiders, trolls, bull centaurs and champions all die in one round from 6 freeze spell casts.

Has anyone else found this? Is the game balanced around having multiple mages? Many of the spells seem poorly balanced too, freeze only costs 5 power and there are utter crap ones in comparison with a similar casting level.

What solutions are there out there? It just gets silly when in a single monster phase before anything can attack all the mages just freeze everything to death.

Hellebore

Necanthrope
01-01-2012, 13:33
Hmmmm, I'm struggling to see the problem with having a powerful party myself. If you keep on playing it should sort itself out sooner or later as you get to the higher battle levels.

I you really find the multiple mages a problem, you could always change characters or start a new game.

If you want to keep them but downgrade the power a bit, have them go on an adventure and get whacked by a chaos sorceror who steals a big chunk of their power reserves. That should help keep the magic down a bit.

Another option would be to alter the freeze spell, on it's own it's fine. But multiple castings per turn can be very powerful.

Or, you could increase the casting number by one for every time the same spell is cast in the same turn.

Just a few suggestions. Hope it helps.

Hellebore
01-01-2012, 14:07
Cheers.

We are currently all battlelevel 3 with one wizard at 4. She's had freeze since level 1 and has accrued close to 20,000 gold since then just by wiping out large groups of creatures (especially casting after everyone else attacks and taking out expensive creatures).

the elf has just reached battle level 3, scraping in the required gold. So she's managed to get about 6500 gold whilst the two wizards have each gotten 15,000-20,000 in the same time frame.

During the last couple of games the dwarf and elf have done virtually nothing generally because the wizards have killed everything beforehand.

The warriors are carting around all these nasty magic weapons that they never use because the wizards just spell everything to death. At BL 3 even a roll of 2 on the power roll results in 5 power, enough for a mage to cast freeze. So with two mages we are guaranteed to see two freeze spells cast every round unless a 1 is rolled. That's on average about 7 damage to 3-4 monsters, or 3-4 damage to 6-8 monsters which with normal creatures will kill them all. Even beastmen are 6 wounds so on a roll of 2 on the power roll two wizards can average killing 3-4 in one go.

It's especially nasty when used on high damage reduction creatures like chaos warriors because freeze ignores their toughness and armour. The barbarian or dwar as leader may flail around and do some damage to the chaos warriors only for the mage to take the last 4 wounds off 4 of them and score 500 gold.

With their personal power stores and a magic staff they can pump out even more. An average power roll of a 4 results in 7 for one mage and 8 for the level 4 one. The level 4 mage has 16 personal power and a charged staff. Even just saving 2 personal power for the game means at the end of the game she can still on an average roll double cast freeze. On a 6 and using up her personal store but not her staff she can cast freeze 5 times in one turn. In the end we found that freeze being cast 3-4 times a round pretty much guarantees everything in the area is dead, generally before they can make any attacks.

They cast freeze instead of heal spells because if there's nothing left to wound anyone there's no reason to heal...

It's not that the party is powerful it's that a couple of the players are and the rest get little to do.

hellebore

Nachie
01-01-2012, 15:02
Freeze is a probably the best early attack spell, though unfortunately it doesn't "level up" in terms of damage the way fireball does.

First of all, the Wizard can only cast attack spells in his/her own turn. They can cast healing spells whenever they want (usually in what we call the "reaction phase", after the Monster's phase) but if they want to deal any sort of damage they have to do it in the order of initiative or not at all, just like everyone else. It's unclear to me if you're already playing this way or not, but doing so makes it much less likely that the wizard is going to "snipe" kills from other players.

If you have a GM, then the solution to this kind of stuff would be to throw monsters with Magic Drain or other similar abilities at the party. Break/steal the wizard's staff, don't let them replenish their power stores in between every deep of the dungeon, have them get hit by a lightning bolt trap, which screws with their power die for the rest of the game. In my own game, the Wizard has freeze but since it works on every monster in the same board section I told them that it had a range of 8" when outside of the dungeon. Since I love playing large outdoor scenarios, this means that the Wizard really can't be everywhere at once, and the players have to think about their tactics a little more carefully.

Last thing: I personally do not think that the Wizard should get +3 to the power roll at BL 3. The reason being, they don't get +1 at level one! I'm not going to bother quoting the rules verbatim on this, but I believe that there is a typo, because it says something like "the Wizard gains +1 to the power roll each time they go up a BL. So for instance, a BL 3 wizard would get +3 to his power roll". Well, those two statements contradict each other; a BL 1 wizard has never "gone up a BL" and so gets no bonus to his roll. A BL 2 wizard has only "gone up a BL" once, and so only gets +1, and so forth.

Of course this is my own opinion and ruling as GM on a potentially contentious issue, and I don't necessarily recommend that you change a rule you've already been playing with, but it's food for thought.

Without knowing too much more about what I'm talking about, I'll also point out that there are extensive miscast rules out there from WFRP v.2 and WHFB. WHFB also just released the Storm of Magic expansion. I am just in the beginning stages of delving through these things myself, but my guess is that there will be a number of easily-convertible rules in there that could be used to make spellcasting in WHQ more dynamic or even just a little more difficult.

Good luck!

Daemonslave
01-01-2012, 15:24
We tend to limit each mage to using each spell a maximum of once per turn to avoid situations like this, though you would still have three uses of it per turn.

If it's ruining the game, the GM should do something to remedy the situation, such as (as mentioned above) introducing more creatures with magic defences or create new monsters immune to freeze - Ice Golems or something similar.

Mr Feral
02-01-2012, 10:47
We tend to limit each mage to using each spell a maximum of once per turn to avoid situations like this, though you would still have three uses of it per turn.

If it's ruining the game, the GM should do something to remedy the situation, such as (as mentioned above) introducing more creatures with magic defences or create new monsters immune to freeze - Ice Golems or something similar.

Send them off on an adventure to Kislev until they stop spamming the Freeze spell. :p

Necanthrope
02-01-2012, 10:47
If the wizard players are decent people, could you not ask them to change the spells they are using?

If they refuse, and insist on ruining the game, could you not kick them out of the group?

As for the gold, don't give it two much worry. Sooner or later you come across a dungeon , settlement, or travel event that takes a lot of gold away from you. Carting it around and not spending it is very risky.

Hellebore
02-01-2012, 10:56
We are all good friends and it's really nothing about players abusing the rules. We've talked about what to do with the rules. The level 4 wizard even offered to stop casting it altogether. My opinion though is that purposefully gimping your play is the wrong end of the stick. You should fix the cause not the symptom.

This is why I started this thread. I was curious what other people thought about multiple wizards in a group and how that affected the spread of gold. Whether the rules as they are played by reasonable people using the tools at their disposal unfairly favour wizards or whether we are simply getting a long run of bad luck.

I don't consider it unfair for someone to use the rules as they are intended, if it produces a negative result then it's the rules' fault, not the people using them.

We as a group have been wondering what to do about it because we don't want to punish the wizard players but also don't want to let them do everything.

The idea of multiple casting of a spell costing more is good, as is only casting each spell once. Casting attack spells in their initiative order is something we thought about but that just results in the dwarf never getting to swing at anything because he always goes last.

A lot of the issue comes from wizards being able to cast in the monster phase. As room encounters happen after all the warriors act, they can't do anything while the monsters have at least one turn to attack them. But the wizards can simply go before the monsters act, firing off multiple freeze spells and killing them all before the monsters have a go, let alone another round where the melee characters have a swing.

We aren't playing with a GM and we don't want to play with one. We all want to be characters and use the random tables. It was what attracted us to the game in the first place. Everyone gets to be on the same side.

Hellebore

Necanthrope
02-01-2012, 11:11
A lot of the issue comes from wizards being able to cast in the monster phase. As room encounters happen after all the warriors act, they can't do anything while the monsters have at least one turn to attack them. But the wizards can simply go before the monsters act, firing off multiple freeze spells and killing them all before the monsters have a go, let alone another round where the melee characters have a swing.

Hellebore

I think I can see where you might have a problem. The wizards should only be able to cast damage causing spells in their own turn. The can cast healing or defence spells at any time, but may only use attack spells when it is their turn to act.

Also, unless the monsters have ambush, the warriors should always have a chance to attack them first. The monsters have to wait for the next monsters phase to attack when they are first placed on the board.

So on a turn where the party has just moved into a new dungeon room, and encountered monsters from an event card you would

1. Place the monsters as evenly divided as possible, resolving any ambush attacks against the warriors now. If the monsters do not have ambush, they can do nothing else this turn. The wizards may cast healing or defence spells if they wish (assuming they have the power available).

2. The warriors phase begins again, and you act in the usual order (So for your party it would be Barbarian, Elf, Wizard, Wizard, Dwarf.) The wizards can cast defence and healing spells at any time, but must wait for their own action to cast any attack spells.

3. Then the monsters phase starts, any monsters placed this turn may do nothing. Monsters who appeared in earlier turns may act normally. The wizards may cast healing and defence spells only.

4. End of the turn, and start of a new one. Roll the power dice and pray it's not a one!

Hopefully that helps a little.

Hellebore
02-01-2012, 11:17
Hmm this is not how we've understood the rules.

A dungeon room event card is drawn at the beginning of the monster phase, which occurs after the warrior phase. Creatures are placed evenly around if it's a monster card and then as it's the monster phase they take their turns.

Only if its a monster event on a power roll of 1 would they get placed and do nothing while the warriors attack. Any left alive in the monster phase then get their go.

That's how we understood the rules to work. Rooms auto produce an event but it's done at the beginning of the monster phase so the warriors can do nothing unless they have spells.

Is this not how the rules are supposed to work? Certainly we noticed a big difference between who killed what when a 1 was rolled vs a normal dungeon room.

Hellebore

Necanthrope
02-01-2012, 11:22
I just double checked my rulebook for you. Page 19, "new monsters"

Once new monsters have been places on the board in the monster's phase their turn is over. They have expended their turn by leaping into position. They cannot move or fight until the monster's phase of the next turn. Monsters that appeared in the power phase of the current turn CAN attack in the monsters phase of the same turn.

It looks like you've been doing it back to front.

Hellebore
02-01-2012, 11:29
That may have some effect on how we play the game then.

We don't have our regular game for almost another week so I won't be able to see how this changes the kill dynamic.

On the other hand following the rules that allow a wizard to cast spells whenever they want would make wiping these creatures out easier because they make no attacks that round, reducing the threat.

Certainly I can see that if wizards can't cast offensive spells during the monster phase that would change the attack dynamic because they'd have to wait until the next round.

hellebore

Necanthrope
02-01-2012, 11:41
I just looked through the spellcasting section to see if I'd missed anything.

It seems a wizard can always cast defence and healing, but can only cast attack spells in the warriors phase. He can do it in another warriors turn if he likes, he doesn't have to wait.

However, I think it's better to make a wizard wait for their own turn to cast attack spells. Certainly that's how I play it.

Hellebore
02-01-2012, 11:46
In the rulebook I have it says:

WHEN CAN SPELLS BE CAST?
A Wizard may cast spells at any time during the turn. He can even cast spells during the Monsters' Phase. The player declares he is using a spell, gives up the Power required, and the spell is cast as described on the card.

Which is how we've been playing it.

Hellebore

Necanthrope
02-01-2012, 11:59
Page 31, a little further on from what you're reading.

Attack spells are an exception in that they can only be cast in the warriors phase. However, you can cast an attack spell at any time during the phase, even during another players turn if you wish. The only time you can never cast spells is to interrupt a hit. once a monster, warrior, or anything else (such as a trap) has "hit" you work out any damage straight away. This is because the hit and damage rolls are the result of one continuous action, and although you make two separate rolls it is inappropriate to interrupt them to cast a spell.
At the end of each turn unused power is lost. The wizard rolls again in the next power phase.

I've always played a wizard has to wait for his turn to cast attack spells, but then I've only played with one wizard.

BigRob
02-01-2012, 20:34
It's been said already that Wizards may only use an attack spell during the warriors phase.

It's good gaming to wait until its your Initiative so everyone gets to have a bash at things.

When monsters are placed on the board, unless they have Ambush, they cannot attack until the next monsterphase, giving you a warriors phase to attack them.

Wizards are easy enough to deal with. Any monster with Magic Resistance or Dispel magic will laugh at you, Power Drain is awesome and brutal. At level 3 these things start to come into the game and remember when you meet Large Monsters wizards start to have to pay out more power.

Edit: Also throwing freeze around will stop being effective when your dealing with monsters with more than 20 wounds.

Hellebore
02-01-2012, 23:55
Page 31, a little further on from what you're reading.

Attack spells are an exception in that they can only be cast in the warriors phase. However, you can cast an attack spell at any time during the phase, even during another players turn if you wish. The only time you can never cast spells is to interrupt a hit. once a monster, warrior, or anything else (such as a trap) has "hit" you work out any damage straight away. This is because the hit and damage rolls are the result of one continuous action, and although you make two separate rolls it is inappropriate to interrupt them to cast a spell.
At the end of each turn unused power is lost. The wizard rolls again in the next power phase.

I've always played a wizard has to wait for his turn to cast attack spells, but then I've only played with one wizard.

:eek: bloody hell these rules are layed out badly. 5 of us have read them several times and somehow we missed that and the monster phase bit.

This will change how we play I think. I'll have to let people know.

Hellebore

S_A_T_S
07-01-2012, 14:17
My group play pretty much as necanthrope says, but we allow the wizard to cast his attack spells at anytime during the warriors phase, as all our other warriors have higher Int and can clear the room before the wizard gets a turn, so he tends to be a long way behind in cash stakes. Letting him kill steal gives him a chance, and also add to the humour of the session as someone fails to kill something big by a couple of wounds and the wizard player leaps up shouting "Kill steal! I cast Freeze/Fireball/Lightning Bolt! Die, expensive thing, die!!!"

Mind you, I don't think our wizard chose Freeze until lvl 2-3 so we have never really got how ppl say it's op - when you're BL7, Freeze tends to pale in comparison to Vortex of Destruction...

As a possible solution to your magic problems, what if you make the magic users share the power dice? As in, if you roll a 4, and one BL3 wizard uses his 3 BL + 2 from the power dice, the other wizard only gets to use 2 from the power dice, and your barbarian is stuffed? That would still give you 2 Freeze a turn, but they would have to roll 4+, and it would nerf most of your spell casting, making the 2nd wizard and barbarian useless unless the 1st wizard is unconscious...

BigRob
07-01-2012, 20:31
My group play pretty much as necanthrope says, but we allow the wizard to cast his attack spells at anytime during the warriors phase, as all our other warriors have higher Int and can clear the room before the wizard gets a turn, so he tends to be a long way behind in cash stakes. Letting him kill steal gives him a chance, and also add to the humour of the session as someone fails to kill something big by a couple of wounds and the wizard player leaps up shouting "Kill steal! I cast Freeze/Fireball/Lightning Bolt! Die, expensive thing, die!!!"

Mind you, I don't think our wizard chose Freeze until lvl 2-3 so we have never really got how ppl say it's op - when you're BL7, Freeze tends to pale in comparison to Vortex of Destruction...

As a possible solution to your magic problems, what if you make the magic users share the power dice? As in, if you roll a 4, and one BL3 wizard uses his 3 BL + 2 from the power dice, the other wizard only gets to use 2 from the power dice, and your barbarian is stuffed? That would still give you 2 Freeze a turn, but they would have to roll 4+, and it would nerf most of your spell casting, making the 2nd wizard and barbarian useless unless the 1st wizard is unconscious...

Power sharing is not good, makes the other wizard bored by having nothing to do.

Vortex of destruction is good, but by that level your suffering as a mage, everyone has magic resistance, magic drain, magic dispel and/or the Large Monster rule. Don't forget oh poor mages you get 5 gold for every wound healed......

Hellebore
08-01-2012, 12:39
Ok so update to this little drama.

We played a game tonight using several rules corrections. I truly think the rules for this game are one of the single worst laid out rules I've ever come across. I've never had this much trouble finding out how to do things in any other game system, including more complex ones like infinity (which is also translated from Spanish).

Any way, we weren't splitting the dungeon deck at intersections, which changed things quite a lot.

With attack spells as warrior phase only the dynamic of the game changed. Unfortunately the two games we played had the dwarf as the leader both times, so his low initiative vs the wizards didn't come into it being the leader. The game played differently, was actually slower because the wizards weren't freezing the monsters in their own phase when they showed up.

We also decided to split kills amongst ourselve so that awkward positioning and so on didn't affect a character's gold accrual. That was good because my dwarf being leader ended up in the corner ready to open a door so many times in a corridor when a 1 was rolled... Although we still have individual rolls for gold for treasure. This worked out pretty well, although the gold list required to do addition on.

So far playing properly has made the game better which is great.


However there are several more questions that have popped up that are really annoying.


None of us can find any info about whether you can make attacks diagonally next to a corner - you can't MOVE diagonally next to a corner but can you attack?

The other thing is that the deathblow rules specifically say 'if there is a monster adjacent to the one killed'. Now we have run into many occasions where there are two monsters at North and East and a player at North East (visualise compass for orientation). Is the player in the way? Because it says 'adjacent to the other monster' it doesn't seem like they're in the way as diagonal is still adjacent, the player's square isn't really obscuring them. However if they are in the way, then we assume that would mean a player can't attack diagonall between two other players either.

So attacking diagonally next to a corner and diagonally between players/monsters and deathblowing via a diagonal adjacency....

Hellebore

Necanthrope
08-01-2012, 13:43
The Deathblow rules are a bit vague, and yes WHQ in general is full of oddities in the layout and wording.

I would allow an attack around a corner, but not a deathblow.
I would say a Deathblow has to "carry" on to the nearest model after it has killed the first. If the nearest model is an ally, the deathblow stops in it's tracks. Unless you are a wardancer of course.

BigRob
09-01-2012, 14:54
Ok so update to this little drama.


So far playing properly has made the game better which is great.

None of us can find any info about whether you can make attacks diagonally next to a corner - you can't MOVE diagonally next to a corner but can you attack?

The other thing is that the deathblow rules specifically say 'if there is a monster adjacent to the one killed'. Now we have run into many occasions where there are two monsters at North and East and a player at North East (visualise compass for orientation). Is the player in the way? Because it says 'adjacent to the other monster' it doesn't seem like they're in the way as diagonal is still adjacent, the player's square isn't really obscuring them. However if they are in the way, then we assume that would mean a player can't attack diagonall between two other players either.

So attacking diagonally next to a corner and diagonally between players/monsters and deathblowing via a diagonal adjacency....

Hellebore

Monsters must be next to each other for a deathblow to continue. If there is an empty square or a square with a warrior in between the monsters then the deathblow stops unless you have something that says otherwise (like the wardancer).

Attacking round a corner diagonally is (IIRC) not allowed, I'm sure there is a diagram in the rules to cover this.

Arneb
09-01-2012, 19:54
I agree about death-blow.
Regarding attacking around a corner diagonally, the Rule Book never mention it, it just state that in order to attack something you have to be adjacent to it. I think it's safe to assume that it is allowed, but I could have missed something, maybe from the Roleplay book?..

Littlemonk
09-01-2012, 22:00
I agree about death-blow.
Regarding attacking around a corner diagonally, the Rule Book never mention it, it just state that in order to attack something you have to be adjacent to it. I think it's safe to assume that it is allowed, but I could have missed something, maybe from the Roleplay book?..

I think it's safer to assume that if you can't shoot someone because of line of sight issues, that the same line of sight would apply to hand-to-hand combat. But i think you're technically correct. It does state "adjacent square" in the Rulebook.

Arneb
09-01-2012, 22:42
I may be wrong, but the only scheme about "What you can see" that I can remeber is the one in the "Power phase" section of the Rule Book and it doesn't show the line of sight of two figures placed as we're discussing, not adjacent and neither at a distance.
So, the line of sight is open or not?

Hellebore
09-01-2012, 23:57
Monsters must be next to each other for a deathblow to continue. If there is an empty square or a square with a warrior in between the monsters then the deathblow stops unless you have something that says otherwise (like the wardancer).

Attacking round a corner diagonally is (IIRC) not allowed, I'm sure there is a diagram in the rules to cover this.

It says a monster must be adjacent. And monsters are still adjacent when they are diagonally apart, even if there's a hero in the square 'between' them. If diagonal isn't adjacent then you can't hit someone diagonally because they wouldn't be adjacent to you.

Hellebore

Oakwolf
24-01-2012, 15:24
My point of view from the OP is that this is how it'll turn out if you're lucky with the magic dice and monster rolls. Wizards with Freeze and or Healing hands are clearly on top of the food chain at lvl 1.

Some party configurations will simply bulldozer over the first levels, until you start getting bad magic rolls coupled with magic resisting (or dispelling) monsters. Some heroes (mages, wardancers) will "steal" kills by nature. That's how they're designed.

By the time the party reaches level 6 dungeons, it will start getting serious again, and freeze won't help that much anymore.

I've also noticed that 5 heroes is too much, especially if you add a wizard. Adding .25 monsters to the rolls doesn't make that much of a difference once the heroes have healing and powerful weapons.