What am I missing about the Shield of the Mage?


Rules Questions


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate. 1 person marked this as a favorite.

very bottom

Quote:
This caster's shield always has one arcane scroll and knows the same arcane spells as the wielder. When the spell on the scroll is cast, another scroll of a spell the wielder knows randomly manifests to replace it. The shield has no arcane spell failure. The shield can also read magic. It will often debate with its wielder for the most devastating course of action, but does what the wielder commands.

I have to be missing something, because "infinite spells" seems completely out of line even for a major artifact, let alone a mere 14500 GP item.


Looks like something that should have a X/day limit but someone forgot to add that part.


intelligent items are all stupid in some way or one other. Nearly everyone here just dropped them and forgot they exist. You should do the same.

Dark Archive

Deciphering a scroll is usually a full-round action. A Caster Shield has a maximum spell level of 3 and nothing in the Shield of the Mage writeup indicates that this is changed.
A scrollmaster cyphermage could get some use out of the shield, but even for such a character it's not that great.

The Exchange

2 people marked this as a favorite.

"Haha! I just blasted an enemy with a fireball! Let's see what I get next! Resistance? That's...disappointing. OK, I'll spend my action to get rid of it and get a new spell. Clairaudience/Clairvoyance? Man, that's a 10 minute cast! Oh well, I'll read this evening and hope for something better."


From what I can tell, yeah, you were missing the "randomly" part.


3 people marked this as FAQ candidate.

I think one issue here is what is meant by "spell you know." That's 100% clear for a spontaneous caster, but what about a Wizard? Does that mean spells you've prepared for the day or spells in spell book? If it goes by spell book what is the limitation of how the shield can draw from it; ie I lost my spell book will it still keep making spells from it? If the spellbook needs to be present, what if I have specialized spell books called "Blasting," "Save or Suck," and "Battlefield Control" and then choose to "lose" all but Save or Suck for the day after prepping spells by giving them to someone else to throw in the bag of holding?

Perhaps I'm over-thinking this, but I have no idea how it is supposed to work for prepared casters.


chaoseffect wrote:

I think one issue here is what is meant by "spell you know." That's 100% clear for a spontaneous caster, but what about a Wizard? Does that mean spells you've prepared for the day or spells in spell book? If it goes by spell book what is the limitation of how the shield can draw from it; ie I lost my spell book will it still keep making spells from it? If the spellbook needs to be present, what if I have specialized spell books called "Blasting," "Save or Suck," and "Battlefield Control" and then choose to "lose" all but Save or Suck for the day after prepping spells by giving them to someone else to throw in the bag of holding?

Perhaps I'm over-thinking this, but I have no idea how it is supposed to work for prepared casters.

It's old terminology left over from the pre-3E days. "Spells Known" for prepared casters is "every spell they have access to." For wizards, that means every spell in every spellbook you've ever owned. For a witch, this presumably would apply to familiars, and Divine Prepared casters it would mean every spell ever printed. (Not that they can actually use the item, but you get the idea.)

In case you're not familiar, prior to 3.0 wizards had a hard limit on the number of spells of a given level they could store in their spellbooks, linked to Intelligence. If they wanted to learn a new spell outside of this limit...they were completely out of luck, since the "spells known" were permanent and even if you lost the spellbook they took up a slot.

Very few groups actually played this rule as written, if at all.


Belafon wrote:
"Haha! I just blasted an enemy with a fireball! Let's see what I get next! Resistance? That's...disappointing. OK, I'll spend my action to get rid of it and get a new spell. Clairaudience/Clairvoyance? Man, that's a 10 minute cast! Oh well, I'll read this evening and hope for something better."

Never said anything about using them in-combat. The sheer utility of infinite spells, even if they are only out of combat, is insane.

The Exchange

deuxhero wrote:
Belafon wrote:
"Haha! I just blasted an enemy with a fireball! Let's see what I get next! Resistance? That's...disappointing. OK, I'll spend my action to get rid of it and get a new spell. Clairaudience/Clairvoyance? Man, that's a 10 minute cast! Oh well, I'll read this evening and hope for something better."
Never said anything about using them in-combat. The sheer utility of infinite spells, even if they are only out of combat, is insane.

Don't forget you're talking about a specific, named, intelligent item. This isn't something every caster is going to have. It's a unique item and not something the GM should introduce unless s/he thinks the campaign can handle it.

But it's not really that insane. Most of the spells that come up aren't going to be immediately helpful. If I'm a 12th level wizard, what's easier? Casting every spell that comes up until I finally get guards and wards or just memorizing guards and wards when I need it?

If I'm a sorcerer, the spell choices are much more limited but if I'm so out of spell slots that I'm relying on the shield to come up with a useful spell (instead of a 0 level) then I probably need to be encouraging the party to call it a day anyway.

(If I get to be a 17th level wizard I *might* decide to keep on casting until wish shows up. But again the GM should consider this effect before introducing the item. Like limiting it to 3rd level spells and below. Or making sure you follow the letter of the spells on the scroll. "You got banishment? OK, it's a targeted spell so you can't cast it until there is at least one extraplanar creature in range. Flesh to stone? Too bad the only creatures nearby are your allies...")


It has creation requirements, so you can craft it.

It IS limited to third level per the normal Caster's Shield it is based on.


Jadeite wrote:

Deciphering a scroll is usually a full-round action. A Caster Shield has a maximum spell level of 3 and nothing in the Shield of the Mage writeup indicates that this is changed.

A scrollmaster cyphermage could get some use out of the shield, but even for such a character it's not that great.

Sorry, how do you know the maximum level of the scroll on the back is max level 3?


In case Jadeite stopped following this thread as some point in the last three years:

The Caster's Shield says:

Quote:
This +1 light wooden shield has a leather strip on the back on which a spellcaster can scribe a single spell as on a scroll. A spell so scribed requires half the normal cost in raw materials. The strip cannot accommodate spells of higher than 3rd level.

The Shield of the Mage says:

Quote:
This caster's shield always has one arcane scroll and knows the same arcane spells as the wielder. When the spell on the scroll is cast, another scroll of a spell the wielder knows randomly manifests to replace it.

If a Caster's Shield can't contain spells above 3rd level, and the Shield of the Mage is a Caster's Shield, then it has the same restriction unless stated otherwise.

So you'd choose randomly from the level 0 to level 3 spells the caster knows.

Sovereign Court

Randomly, but using what distribution?

Also, this item punishes you for knowing more than a laser-focused set of spells. Sooo weird.


Even distribution, presumably. Count the number of spells you know in that level range. Let's say it's 37 - you'd roll a 37-sided dice. If you don't have one, you can generate any number range using the %-dice technique and rerolling bad numbers. (Eg, 1d4 to generate a number from 0, 10, 20 or 30, then a d10 for the second digit, rerolling if you get 38-40.)

Is it possible to forget spells? I'm trying to imagine a character who only knows one spell, and it's level 3, but they can cast it every round.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

The person that should use this is an alchemist with the discovery Spell Knowledge. When you only have a single spell, it's super easy to figure out what spell you'll cast. ;)


The lack of arcane spell failure is what is appealing to me, not the scroll.


Chris Kenney wrote:

In case you're not familiar, prior to 3.0 wizards had a hard limit on the number of spells of a given level they could store in their spellbooks, linked to Intelligence. If they wanted to learn a new spell outside of this limit...they were completely out of luck, since the "spells known" were permanent and even if you lost the spellbook they took up a slot.

Very few groups actually played this rule as written, if at all.

And if you were familiar, you knew that at 19 Int, you had that cap removed.

2nd Ed spells by Int:
Intelligence
Ability .. # of .. Spell .. Chance to .. Max. # of .. Illusion
Score .. Lang. .. Level .. Learn Spell .. Spells/Level .. Immunity
1 .. 0* .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
2 .. 1 .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
3 .. 1 .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
4 .. 1 .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
5 .. 1 .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
6 .. 1 .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
7 .. 1 .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
8 .. 1 .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. -- .. .. --
9 .. 2 .. 4th .. .. 35% .. .. 6 .. .. --
10 .. 2 .. 5th .. .. 40% .. .. 7 .. .. --
11 .. 2 .. 5th .. .. 45% .. .. 7 .. .. --
12 .. 3 .. 6th .. .. 50% .. .. 7 .. .. --
13 .. 3 .. 6th .. .. 55% .. .. 9 .. .. --
14 .. 4 .. 7th .. .. 60% .. .. 9 .. .. --
15 .. 4 .. 7th .. .. 65% .. .. 11 .. .. --
16 .. 5 .. 8th .. .. 70% .. .. 11 .. .. --
17 .. 6 .. 8th .. .. 75% .. .. 14 .. .. --
18 .. 7 .. 9th .. .. 85% .. .. 18 .. .. --
19 .. 8 .. 9th .. .. 95% .. .. All .. 1st-level
20 .. 9 .. 9th .. .. 96% .. .. All .. 2nd-level
21 .. 10 .. 9th .. .. 97% .. .. All .. 3rd-level
22 .. 11 .. 9th .. .. 98% .. .. All .. 4th-level
23 .. 12 .. 9th .. .. 99% .. .. All .. 5th-level
24 .. 15 .. 9th .. .. 100% .. .. All .. 6th-level
25 .. 20 .. 9th .. .. 100% .. .. All .. 7th-level

* While unable to speak a language, the character can still communicate by grunts and gestures.

If you have a way to sacrifice a spell from a scroll to gain a benefit, it can also be nice.

/cevah

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder RPG / Rules Questions / What am I missing about the Shield of the Mage? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.