dnd 5e – Would giving Sorcerer archetypes extra “spells known” unbalance them?

Sorcerers don’t have many spells. If I compare them to other full casters (I’m not including Warlocks in this because they work entirely differently), namely Bards, Clerics, Druids and Wizards, then they seem to come up short.

By level 20:

  • Bards know 22 spells;
  • Clerics/Druids can have between 24-25 spells prepared (assuming WIS of 18-20);
  • Wizards know a whopping 44 spells (only including spells gained via levelling) but can only prepare about 25, as per Cleric/Druid;
  • Sorcerers only know 15;

Sorcerers are the clear losers here. Not that I expect them to have as many as Wizards (since that’s their thing), but 15 just seems way too few to me, and I don’t think that Metamagic alone makes up that difference (which is all they seem to have besides spells). So I was thinking of giving them a free (but specific) spell between spell levels 1st-5th, much the same as I did for the PHB Rangers.

This way, the Sorcerer would know 20 spells; still fewer than everyone else, but not by as great-a-margin. As with my other question, the spells I have picked suit their flavour and include spells from within their own spell list and from other spell lists (which would count as sorcerer spells for them), but only one extra spell per spell level (up to 5th). I’m not listing them all here, though, as it would take up too much room (I’ve done this for the UA archetypes, too).

I suppose the player of these “enhanced sorcerers” could potentially swap out the free spell for any old sorcerer spell, effectively giving them 20 total spells without the flavour, but as covered in this question, I’m going to assume they can’t do that, much the same as with the extra Ranger spells (or at the very least, I would rule that they can’t, given that I’d be the DM in this situation, what with it being my homebrew).

So, my question is does the increase in number of spells known impact the strength of the class in a way that might make it preferable to the other spellcasters? I’ve always felt they were the weaker option, but that might just be because I don’t use Metamagic to it’s full potential or something, so will these additional spells and the increased flexibility they provide unbalance anything beyond what I have anticipated?


As a caveat, I’m aware that the XGTE archetypes (and the new Giant Soul Sorcerer archetype from UA, but I don’t care as much about that because it’s just UA, and my main balance concerns are with the official released archetypes) already include an additional spell; namely the Divine Soul’s Divine Magic feature (XGTE, pg. 50):

In addition, choose an affinity for the source of your divine power: good, evil, law, chaos, or neutrality. You learn an additional spell based on that affinity (…)

and the Shadow Sorcerer’s Eyes of the Dark feature (XGTE, pg. 51):

When you reach 3rd level in this class, you learn the darkness spell, which doesn’t count against your number of sorcerer spells known.

Therefore, RAW, these Sorcerers would know 16 spells in total by level 20. I’m planning on not giving Divine Soul sorcerers an extra level 1 spell or Shadow Sorcerers and extra 2nd level spell, so that their total is still 20 known spells by the time they hit level 20. I personally don’t think this matters too much since it’s only one spell’s difference, and their class features do provide them with other benefits, so it’s not like I’m taking their class features away from them and giving them to every other sorcerer archetype.

I thought to mention this in case this impacts balance, and therefore any potential answers, in a way I haven’t anticipated; but this is an aside, just some extra information, and my question is not specifically about this aside, but about the impacts of having any sorcerers with 20 spells.

larp – How can we phys-repp breath/flame attacks or spells?

Our fantasy LARP would like to expand combat magic to include breath/flame/area-of-effect attacks/spells.

How can we phys-repp such effects?

Requirements:

  • Must be reasonably1safe for all participants (e.g. CO2 Fire extinguishers are a Bad Idea (TM))
  • Should telegraph hits clearly, in the sense that it is clear if a combatant was hit by some effect, or if they were not (at least clear to the person hit).
  • Should be as flashy and visible as possible. For example I have seen (manually) pressurised water sprayers being used at other LARPS – these basically tick all the boxes, but are really not very flashy or visible.
  • The LARP I am a part of has a hit-based and rather competitive combat system. For combat magic to work in our setting it also needs to be somewhat competitive, e.g. not take 10 minutes to prepare a 1 second attack.

In the past we tried smoke effects, but these were difficult to handle:

  • Outdoors weather/wind situation has a huge impact on their usefulness
  • Most importantly it was quite impossible for all involved (caster and his allies as well as potential victims) to judge when they were affected/hit by a smoke effect –> this led to very varying results when used and was the reason for some frustration of players.

1 After all there is some inherent risk in running about in the woods and hitting each other over the head with various weapons. I think 100% safety is neither achievable nor desirable, hence the ‘reasonably’.

spells – Can you make eldritch knight adjustments or buffs?

spells – Can you make eldritch knight adjustments or buffs? – Role-playing Games Stack Exchange

spells – Can mage hand attach an object?

spells – Can mage hand attach an object? – Role-playing Games Stack Exchange

spells – What does this lines from Reverse Gravity mean?

Reverse Gravity includes that

Once an object or creature reaches the top of the area, it floats, caught between the normal and reversed gravity. The creature can move along the plane where the two forms of gravity meet. Creatures that can levitate or fly can use those abilities to mitigate the effects of reverse gravity.

What does the bolded sentence mean? It sounds like you can ‘walk’ on the top of the effect, but that doesn’t make a lot of sense to me (lacking traction) so I was wondering if that’s the case (because magic) or if there is another interpretation that is more accurate.

spells – Exactly how does a Storm of Blades work?

spells – Exactly how does a Storm of Blades work? – Role-playing Games Stack Exchange

dnd 5e – Can I replicate Spellwrought Tattoos with spells that are not on the Artificer’s spell list?

RAW, you can do this, but it’s probably an oversight.

You have correctly observed: spellwrought tattoos are very similar to spell scrolls. Replicate Magic Item says:

Alternatively, you can choose the magic item from among the common magic items in the game, not including potions or scrolls.

You cannot replicate spell scrolls using the feature, and since spellwrought tattoos are also consumables that let you cast a spell once, it seems natural that they should be excluded as well. Based on this I would rule that you cannot replicate spellwrought tattoos.

As written, everything works as you have described, but it’s definitely a bug in the game. Technically it allows you to create a spellwrought tattoo with any cantrip or 1st level spell, even if you don’t know the spell. This doesn’t make sense, especially since it sort of overshadows your 11th level feature Spell Storing Item, which requires you store a spell you know.

dnd 5e – Redundant bonus spells for cleric peace domain

dnd 5e – Redundant bonus spells for cleric peace domain – Role-playing Games Stack Exchange

dnd 5e – Summon spells and AC

Does what it says on the tin.

The Monster Manual rules for AC state:

a monster’s AC is based on its Dexterity modifier and natural armor, if any. If a monster has natural armor, wears armor, or carries a shield, this is noted in parentheses after its AC value.

This indicates that the listed AC on a monster’s stat block accounts for the dexterity modifier. You should never have to add the dexterity modifier to the printed AC to figure out the actual AC of the monster. Something as fundamental as a monster’s armor class should not be ambiguous or difficult to determine.

Think about it like this. Monster AC is Natural Armor base plus Dexterity modifier. So while the AC of summon undead is written as

11 + the level of the spell

The real under the hood calculation for the monster’s AC is:

11 + each level above 3rd + Dexterity Modifier

So that if you cast at 4th level, the monsters AC is 11 + 1 + 3 = 11 + 4 = 15. Upcasting the spell is increasing the Natural Armor base AC.

And for what it’s worth, this is consistent with the armor classes of the options for summoning 1 beast with the spell conjure animals. The AC of the CR 2 options is 12-14. 17 would be exceptionally resilient for a creature summoned with a 3rd level spell.

dnd 5e – Can wizards really cast spells in armor?

You understand the rules correctly.

It is neither unbalanced nor a departure from D&D tradition.

It is not unabalanced because there are many ways to increase the AC of a Wizard, from Mage Armor to bracers of defense etc. Armor is expensive, and it requires that the wizard invest in both the armor, and the strength to make use of the armor, as well as the strength or dex and int to multiclass in the first place. They will also suffer from a reduced spell progression table, and will be behind others in the party for stat progression. Ofcourse, you’d be better off taking 1 level of wardomain cleric, but the cost of dipping in regards to stat improvements or feats is still there.

It’s not a departure from D&D tradition, because in all versions, if you picked the right combinations you could negate the arcane spell failures for all intents and purposes. The only people who missed out were those who lacked the system mastery to create the character concept. On the other hand, the generic wizard always had a hard time casting spells in various types of armor, and in this edition is is not merely difficult, but impossible to do so unless you choose the correct rule combinations, which allows you to do so. A wizard who is only a wizard, can not cast spells in heavy armor as has always been the case.

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