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Good no spell casting Archetypes


So I was thinking of a setting where there are no spell casters. Magic and magic items still exist. Also, alchemists are still extant and unchanged.

For such classes as ranger and paladin what are some archetypes that don't have spell casting and what would make good default models?

You might not see this as helpful advice, but I'd advise against this kind of setting.

Clearing out spellcasters from D&D / Pathfinder is like cutting off a limb from the body of the game.

Paladins have Warrior of the Holy Light and Stonelord (Dwarf only). Rangers have Skirmisher and Trapper.

Where do the magic items come from if there are no casters?

Dark Archive

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Rynjin wrote:
Where do the magic items come from if there are no casters?

Master Craftsman feat.

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Or Alchemists. Read the OP; alchemists haven't lost their extracts.

Dark Archive

The concept of a non-spellcaster world sounds neat, but are you keeping other magic (spell-like and supernatural) abilities? What about monsters and NPCs? What about bards?

In that kind of setting the alchemist would be very powerful but I think it could work out if you limit the alchemist's melee abilities.
Because having an alchemist that is the only one with magic and in addition to that one of the best melees would suck.

The spell-like and supernatural abilities of the creatures would still remain. Also, NPCs would have the same class restrictions as the PCs.

Supernatural abilities of classes (Monks non spell casting variants) would also work. Additionally I would allow the use of Eldritch Heritage.

Umbranus: Alchemists have a medium attack bonus. It is late maybe I am not getting what you are saying.

Icyshadow wrote:

You might not see this as helpful advice, but I'd advise against this kind of setting.

Clearing out spellcasters from D&D / Pathfinder is like cutting off a limb from the body of the game.

I disagree. You can create a party without spell casters and have them fight enemies without spell casters. None of this will ruin the game. In my experience high level casters are extremely problematic and this would help there.

I was going for a semi-post apocalyptic setting where magic is not as formulaic.

I would suggest you make a few extra archetypes to allow for improved spell less healing, maybe a bardic performance style rogue as bard would be bad without magic and adopt the second wind system some other games have.

Healing may be the biggest issue. No scrolls, no wands, and the only healers are alchemists and to a lesser extent paladins. I expect most alchemists are going to need to take the Chiurgeon archetype. No real buffing or debuffing class either, although again, alchemists can fill that role as well. Cavaliers can buff to a limited extent, and maybe a maneuver based fighter can do some crowd control.

You might be able to create some sort of bardic archetype that replaces spells with masterpieces every other level or something, but you'll need to create a whole bunch of new masterpieces for the bards to learn. Maybe take some of the abilites from other archetypes.

You'll most likely need to avoid certain monsters. I'd avoid undead (no one to create them except for reanimators), unless they are raiding ancient tombs or crypts. I'd also avoid outsiders.

Done well, it sounds like it could be a lot of fun.

For 20 years now, every D&D game I've ever run regardless of edition (2e, 3.0, 3.5, Pathfinder, 4e, and the Next playtest) with no magic items and in that time frame, there have been maybe 3 PCs in those games total that were spellcasters.

It's really not a problem--it works fine and I find it much more fun.

Undead can spontaneously generate if the right circumstances are met.

I had not thought about the scroll and wands issue. I had also thought about letting the master craftsman feat to include potions for those lesser skilled people (NPCs) who don't have the umph to be a full Alchemist. The healing monk becomes a much more viable option and I am thinking i'd allow the Qinggong monk to remain as well.

What you might consider is limits to spell casters instead of eliminating them.

Say full casters like wizard, sorcerer, cleric, druid, and oracle have to have as many levels of expert as they do of their primary casting class (time spent studying magic).

Hybrid casters have to have as many levels of some non-casting class as they do of the hybrid casting class.

Then there are still casters to make magic items. A person could still play a caster, but you won't have to worry about the extreme power of high level casters since they will never make more than 10th.

Anyway, limits of some type don't require changing the game as much as just eliminating them.

Just a thought.

The NPC wrote:
Umbranus: Alchemists have a medium attack bonus. It is late maybe I am not getting what you are saying.

Coupled with the mutagen bonus, the vivisectionist's sneak attack and his buff spells the Alchemist can be a very strong melee combatant.

More so with the discovery to give you more arms.
That way you can have 4 arms with which you can wield a shield and a Twohanded weapon and still have one free for extracts or for TWF.

Most of the builds who use that multiclass with barbarian to get to use rage in addition to mutagen twohanded two-weapon fighting.

Doing all that while being the only "Caster class" would break your no magic game, I'm sure.

I don't see how that would break the game any more or less than it already does. Having wizards doesn't reduce their melee or magical capabilities, and not having wizards doesn't increase them. The fact that you can have parties without casters means you can have campaigns without them. Nothing needs to be balanced (it should actually be more balanced), and lack of super healers really won't be a huge deal. It will teach your players to be more cautious and thoughtful, like mine are since they don't have a healer beyond the ranger's heal skill and the occasional potion. They're doing just fine.

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We did this in 3.5, took all the hybrid (ranger and paladin really) and gave them feats at the level they would gain a new level of spells (i.e. 4, 7, 10, 13, 16), no wiz/druid/sorc/cleric at all. Bards/paladin/ranger got feats, and supernatural abilities were "Blood of Heroes" type things.

Also did one where you had to have less than half your levels of a spellcasting class, and could not start as one. So, you could take your first at 3rd, and 2nd at 5th, and every odd thereafter.

Make the Heal skill give temp HP for x time, things like that, so that ppl cant just "ZOMG charge! CLW wands for everyone!" and have to be smarter.

There was a great 3.0 setting called Midnight that has some great rules for low magic settings and alternate class features to replace spells/SLA/SU abilities that converts easily.

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