Saturday, June 24, 2017

5e Sorcerer Variant?

One of my beefs with 5e is the uneven distribution of long rest and short rest abilities among classes (i.e. encounter and daily powers). The biggest offender, imho, is the sorcerer who gets only long-rest resources and is encouraged to use them up quicker because the sorcerer can spend more resources for a nova round. The quick brainstorm with a friend is to make sorcery points short-rest resources somehow. There's two issues with it.

Number of Sorcery Points. First, the number. 5e sort of assumes something like 2-4 short rests per long rest, so if we simply divide the sorcery points between half and a quarter, that should come close. Say half for now. That'd mean a level 5 sorcerer gets 3 points, which equates to one heightened spell per short rest or a bonus 2nd level slot. That seems pretty strong since warlocks get two 3rd-level slots per short rest, and the sorcerer would also have 3rd level daily slots. If it's a quarter, that means the level 5 caster has 2 points per short rest, which prohibits most expensive metamagic on spells other than cantrips and first level spells, but one level 1 slot per short-rest seems about right but weak. A third is probably about right.

Creating spell slots. The second issue is sorcery points being used to make new spell slots. Short rests could essentially be used to recharge, meaning why not take 3 short rests in a row to recover more slots? This is easily solved by capping created slots with a duration. I'd say end of next round, so you could create a slot in preparation for using it the next round. 1 minute might also be reasonable, or even 10 minutes though. But since they're easy to create, there's not a lot of reason to make them so long-lasting. And if/when they expire? They could automatically convert back to spell points. There's a slight loss here, as it's more expensive to create a spell slot (5 sorc points to make a level 3 spell) than you get from spell slots (3 sorc points for a level 3 slot). But that's probably fine.

Level 20. The sorcerer capstone ability is finally the short-rest sorcery points we want. Nice, but super late. They'd need a new capstone.

Done. What other consequences would this have? Some metamagics aren't going to work on your big guns. You won't have enough points to heighten, twin, or whatever your highest level spells. There's also a question of limitations, can you have more sorcery points that your max? I say sure, convert one big slot to points to power metamagic on your other big slots. Finally, it limits some metamagic options flat out, like Heighten Spell. We might be able to address this by either explicitly mentioning the option is best when you have more sorc points, or by fiddling with the number a bit, more like 1/4 plus 1 or half minus 1 something to ensure the number of sorc points at each level is about right. This still feels a little clunky, but I like the idea. Combine it with 1-2 bonus low-level utility spells for each origin, and it might do well.

No comments:

Post a Comment