Being Batman

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  Being Batman: the Logic Ninja's Guide to Wizards &quot;Making the Most of What you a!e When What #ou a!e $s %readyidicuousy Good(&quot;)he *ery Basics of Wizardry So, you're a wizard. Or rather, you're a geek, pretending to be a wizard, while the guy to your right pretends to be charismatic and good with people plus a master of assassinating  people, the guy to your left pretends to be a slutty lesbian elf princess, and the guy across the table and behind the screen is indulging his power fanatasies and would probably be getting off on it if not for his erectile difficulties--but hey, it's not like he's ever touched a girl, so the only person he's disappointing is himself.Anyway--you're a wizard. hat does this mean! raditionally, it means that at level # a house cat is a serious threat to you, while at level $% you're weak ,to the same e&tent that O is looking for the real killersAs a wizard, you don't have lots of (), you can't swing swords well, and you try to stay as far away from things that want to kill you as you can while still drinking the tasty, tasty *) from their corpses. hat you do have is spellcasting, and a familiar +which is more of a danger than an asset--until you hit level ## more on that later.f you're playing a wizard, you already know you can cast spells and are really s/uishy, solet's get to the details. )he Wizard and his %d!enturing Buddies+ %,% )hose -hum.s Who it )hings /or#ou+ 0to. )hings /rom itting #ou+ %nd ea #ou When #ou Need $t+ Whie #ou 1o% )he $m.ortant 0tuff  he traditional adventuring party has four people, filling the roles of 0eat-Shield, Skill-0onkey, (eal-1itch, and Batman . 2ou're--as 3rank 0iller put--the goddamn Batman .2our 4ob is to do whatever it is that needs doing, unless it falls into the category of 5hitting things6, 7/uothealing things6 or 5using skills that aren't 8nowledge or Spellcraft6 Since this is 97 9, 5whatever it is that needs doing6 will mostly be killing things +and, of course, not getting killed yourself. o this end, you will cast spells that help you and your poor, ignorant, inferior companions +read: party, and hamper your enemies. #our 2tiity Bet  2ou cast spells +well, either that, or hoard them all, not wanting to waste them, and therefore wind up sucking. Spells can do lots of different things. here are several general categories of spells:-  Defensive Buffs : spells that make it more difficult to kill you and;or your allies.- Offensive Buffs : spells that make it easier for you and;or your allies to kill others.- Utility : mostly useful outside of combat, these spells help you accomplish general tasks. 3or e&ample, <ope rick helps you rest without 3eing  eaten at night, 9etect Secret 9oorshelps you find where people hid stuff, et cetera.- Offensive Spells : this category includes anything that does something someone doesn't like to them. here are a number of different kinds of these.-- Save-or-Die : hese make people do what it says. his is good because that's what you're trying to get people to do, a lot of the time. =&ample: 3inger of 9eath-- Save-or-Lose : hese don't kill people, but they might as well. f they succeed, the fight is effectively won all that remains is clean-up. =&ample: 3ear.-- Save-or-Suck  : hese don't make them lose by default, but they certainly make it a lot more likely. 7/uot9ebuff7/uot spells that hamper foes like >litterdust, Slow, et cetera all fall in this category. he line between these and Save-or-?ose spells is pretty blurry.--  Direct Damage : hese spells, by and large, suck. Occasionally, they're useful, but when a good mage wants something damaged, he tells the fighter to go hit it. f it's hard to hurt,he buffs the fighter first.--  Battlefield Control  : hese spells shape the battlefield in your favor. hey make enemiesstay away from you or otherwise do what you want, they buy you time, and so on. =&amples: Solid 3og, >rease.--  No Save : hese spells do bad things to people, and people can't do a damn thing about it. @ot too many of these, because they're so damn good.- Useless Crap : some spells 4ust plain suck, period. his category covers things like enser's 3loating 9isc, (old )ortal, 9etect ndead, and Shout.hat kind of spells do you want! ell, you want some of each--e&cept, most of the time,direct damage. hose are occasionally useful, and will be mentioned later, but in general, avoid them. hy! 1ecause everyone else can do damage, and often, much better than you, while you can also do all the things no one else can. ?eave damage to the guys with  pointy sticks you have better things to do. )hink #our -unning 4ans % the Way )hrough Spells.9on't pick them haphazardly--either to learn or to memorize. hich spells should you  pick! hat depends on what you're doing and what you specialize in. (ere's a general selection of good spells:  Bread and Butter: PB spells ?evel #: -Alarm: utility, and kind of a defensive buff--it keeps you from getting eaten by a moose while asleep.  -)rotection from *: defensive buff--the B$ AC;saves vs. * is nice, but the real kicker is the fact that it supresses all charms and compulsions. Dery useful for low-will-save types.-Shield: defensive buff. >ives you BE AC. he goodness is obvious.->rease: battlefield control that can even be save-or-lose. @ote that it forces balance checks, and creatures who don't have F ranks in balance are flat-footed while making  balance checks... which means the party rogue can sneak attack away.-0age Armor: defensive buff, so you're not O A??2 s/uishy. (ours duration, as much AS as a chain shirt. hat mage doesn't take it!-0ount: utility. Situational--sometimes, you need a horse to get somewhere /uickly. he real use of 0ount, though, is to combine it with 9isguise Self and 0agic Aura, get rid of the mount's magic aura, disguise yourself as someone else... and sell the horse to someone.-dentify: utility, needed to identify magic lewts.- rue Strike: Offensive buff for when your touch-attack spells are having trouble hitting.-Charm )erson: tility;Offensive: it makes people your friends. hat's all sorts of useful.-Sleep: Save-or-?ose. Sleep is the low-level 5win spell6 even a cleric with #G S only has a BH will save at level #, and with #G @ you can have a 9C #F Sleep, #H with focuses. hat's a pretty solid chance of a failed save. ith a #%-S fighter or rogue, it's a great chance.-Color Spray: Save-or-?ose. Similar to sleep, but it keeps 3eing  good for a lot longer. At levels #-Iish Sleep is better because Color Spray is short-range and thus more likely to get you poked with a pointy stick.-Silent mage: tility. t's an illusion. se your creativity.-<ay of =nfeeblement: @o save. (eavy strength drain can make a fighter useless--he suddenly can't move in his heavy armorJ t's always good for dropping people's A1 and damage, too. @o save, like most ray spells hitting with the ranged touch can occasionally be an issue.-=nlarge )erson: a great low-level buff. >ive your fighter reach and a strength bonus.?evel $:->litterdust: ith a ill save vs. 1lindness, this is a save-or-suck that affects an area. t can pretty much win battles for you, as the fighters have to contend with suddenly significantly less dangerous enemies.-eb: 1attlefield control, this keeps people stuck and makes them move through it slowly if they aren't stuck.-9etect houghts: tility. his is useful in all kinds of social situation. (aven't you ever wanted to know what someone's thinking!-See nvisibility: tility and, in many ways, a defensive buff. nvisible people who want to hurt you are bad, because it means they're likely to actually do so.-Shatter: one of the few good =vocation spells, at low levels, this rocks the house as an offensive spell cast against enemy armor later on it becomes utility +who needs to pick locks!.-0irror mage: a great defensive buff. )eople have a good chance to miss you and hit your image.-nvisibility: utility that can be used as a defensive buff--hard to hit you if you can't be seen.  -1ull's Strength: this becomes pointless once you have BS < items, but when you can first get it, it's a solid offensive buff. )ut it on the fighter and he can hit things better and harder it'll wind up doing more damage than Acid Arrow.-<ope rick: once you hit Caster ?evel K +or e&tend it at C? F, this spell is the perfect  place to rest and prepare your spells in dungeons, the wilderness, et cetera.?evel I:-9ispel 0agic: because you're not the only spellcaster around.-0agic Circle Against *: defensive buff all the goodies of )rotection 3rom *, but longer-lasting +#% min;level and covering everyone within #%' of the recipient.-)rotection from =nergy: defensive buff. seful if you know what energy to e&pect aheadof time. 3ighting fire elementals! )rotection from 3ire will help.-)hantom Steed: tility. At first it seems me! , but then you realize that the horse can eventually fly +hours-duration 3ly spell, effectively, and has a movement speed of $% ft Lper caster levelL. At level F, that's #%%'. ake <ide ranks, and you can have the phantom horse move in, cast a spell, and have it move back. t caps at $E%', which is pretty damn fast.-Stinking Cloud: Save-or-?ose. @auseated creatures can't take standard ations, and thus can't hurt you. )lus, it makes for handy battlefield control, since others will want to avoidit.-9eep Slumber: Save-or-?ose. ?ike Sleep, but up to #% (9 good for the same reason: you can 4ust one-shot sleeping things.-ind all: defensive buff. Another of the =vocation school's few good spells. his keeps you safe from archers.   ll   archers.-<ay of =&haustion: Save or suck, e&haustion is -H S < and -H 9=*--and if you save, you get fatigued anyway, for -$ to each.-Dampiric ouch: temporary (). (urt others, heal yourself.-3ly: defensive buff. 0obility. f they can't reach you, hurting you is harder. At low levels, 3ly B ind all makes you pretty much untouchable by everything e&cept spellcasters.-(aste: offensive and defensive buff. t makes everyone move faster, which is handy for mobility--and gives them an e&tra attack per round.A fireball deals FdH at level F--that's #M average damage on a LfailedL save. A fighter can do #M damage a hit at level F, and with (aste, he'll be getting an e&tra attack each round. he damage from those will pile up above and beyond what the fireball most likely accomplished.-0agic eapon, >reater: offensive buff. Obviating the need for weapons with a better than B# bonus since I.%.-Slow: a save-or-suck that's almost a save-or-lose. 0ultiple target, ill save +fighter and rogue weakness, and they can only take a move or a standard action. <un circles around them--they can move up to you O< hit you, not bothJ ust stay out of reach of a partial charge.?evel E:-9imensional Anchor: stop the 11=> from teleporting out.-1lack entacles: battlefield control that gets less useful over time. >rapple the enemy
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