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Shadow Caster Infinite Canrtips?


Rules Questions


I cracked open inner sea magic and the shadow caster gets this abilitity

Shadow Spells (Su): At 1st level, a shadowcaster uses his shadow to prepare additional spells. He must spend his entire period of spell preparation in dim illumination to use this ability. He may prepare a number of additional spell levels of spells equal to the level of the highestlevel wizard spell he can cast. For example, if he can cast 6th-level wizard spells, he could prepare six 1st-level spells, two 3rd level-spells, or any similar combination that adds up to a total of six spell levels. These spells are stored in his shadow. He can only cast these spells when he is in an area of normal light or dim light. He gains Shadowtongue as a bonus language. This ability replaces arcane bond.

Now this lacks any text dissallowing cantrips or saying to treat them as half level spells. So does this mean infinite cantrips?

Secondary question. Penumbra the cantrip seems like it could interact with this.

This spell keeps the creature or object touched slightly in shadow. The target of this spell does not suffer any penalties or blindness caused by bright light, such as those from light sensitivity or light blindness.

Not being able to cast spells is certainly a penalty. So would penumbra and shadowcaster allow infinite cantrips?


Cantrips can already be cast forever?

PRD wrote:
Cantrips: Wizards can prepare a number of cantrips, or 0-level spells, each day, as noted on Table: Wizard under "Spells per Day." These spells are cast like any other spell, but they are not expended when cast and may be used again. A wizard can prepare a cantrip from a prohibited school, but it uses up two of his available slots (see below).


GM Fez wrote:

Cantrips can already be cast forever?

PRD wrote:
Cantrips: Wizards can prepare a number of cantrips, or 0-level spells, each day, as noted on Table: Wizard under "Spells per Day." These spells are cast like any other spell, but they are not expended when cast and may be used again. A wizard can prepare a cantrip from a prohibited school, but it uses up two of his available slots (see below).

Yes but this lets you prepare say 20 of them instead of like 5. Thats what i am asking.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I guess at best it would let him prepare *all* his cantrips for free into his shadow, instead of just the 3 a 1st level wizard can normally prepare. The power level of this is pretty marginal given what cantrips can do, though having all the "detects" at your disposal is pretty nice.

Personally, I would allow it outright or make cantrips equal to 1/2 level spells. I certainly wouldn't disallow cantrips.

I don't PFS, but if this is a legal archetype then unlimited cantrips should be the ruling unless it has been addressed somewhere else.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

When crafting magical item whose effects are based on spell level (scrolls, wands, etc), cantrips count as level 1/2 rather than level 0. This situation is highly analogous so I would maintain that precedent here; each extra cantrip slot prepared by Shadow Spells counts 1/2 a level towards the maximum.

The Penumbra cantrip is unofficial, and was released as part of a Paizo blog many years ago as content that was cut from the game. It eventually found its way into the game as the Protective Penumbra spell (a 2nd level spell). If your GM allows the cantrip, then yes it can be used to ensure you are considered to be in darkness while preparing spells.


Dasrak wrote:
The Penumbra cantrip is unofficial, and was released as part of a Paizo blog many years ago as content that was cut from the game.

It's wrong to say it's unofficial. What it actually said was "These cantrips are not legal in official organized play."

For non-"organized play", it's as legal as any other cantrip: the only proviso for a normal game is " Spellcasters that gain access to all 0-level spells at 1st level do not gain access to rare cantrips."


The rare cantrips are cut content that never made it into any published book. They're unusual in that Paizo gave us a peek at something from the cutting room floor, something they normally don't do. However, that doesn't change the fact that this is content that Paizo consciously decided to exclude from published sourcebooks. So yes, it's unofficial.


Dasrak wrote:
The rare cantrips are cut content that never made it into any published book. They're unusual in that Paizo gave us a peek at something from the cutting room floor, something they normally don't do. However, that doesn't change the fact that this is content that Paizo consciously decided to exclude from published sourcebooks. So yes, it's unofficial.

Blogs are official. Think about this: Why tell us "These cantrips are not legal in official organized play" if by default they are unofficial? The reason is because that ARE official. For instance, there is a blog on weapon groups that added new weapons to them: official. Blog of FAQS: legal. Pharasma blog and domains: legal.

Official doesn't mean published material only. What makes you think that something on the official web site, in the official blog, isn't official?


graystone wrote:
Why tell us "These cantrips are not legal in official organized play"

Just to be clear. They'd still be illegal in PFS even if that text wasn't there, because they need to actually come from an approved source to be PFS legal in the first place.

If you want to argue over the word "official", then fine. The key point is that Paizo has effectively excluded this content from the game. It has never been mentioned after the blog post, it only got mentioned in the first place because references to it were accidentally left in other chapters of ultimate magic, all traces of it were expunged in the second printing of UM, and it's not legal in any official format. Feel free to use your own word to describe that, for me "unofficial" seems perfectly apt.


Not pfs and official are different things. Many many many spells are not allowed in pfs. That doesnt mean they dont exist.


Dasrak wrote:

When crafting magical item whose effects are based on spell level (scrolls, wands, etc), cantrips count as level 1/2 rather than level 0. This situation is highly analogous so I would maintain that precedent here; each extra cantrip slot prepared by Shadow Spells counts 1/2 a level towards the maximum.

The Penumbra cantrip is unofficial, and was released as part of a Paizo blog many years ago as content that was cut from the game. It eventually found its way into the game as the Protective Penumbra spell (a 2nd level spell). If your GM allows the cantrip, then yes it can be used to ensure you are considered to be in darkness while preparing spells.

Ok so no actual or "official" rules that make it count for 1/2 then. You would just houserule it as such in your game. That rule is only for crafting. I am not sure how this is at all analogous.


Halek wrote:
Ok so no actual or "official" rules that make it count for 1/2 then. You would just houserule it as such in your game. That rule is only for crafting. I am not sure how this is at all analogous.

When we look at the Shadow Spells ability, it establishes that a 1st level spell is worth 1, a 2nd level spell is worth 2, a 3rd level spell is worth 3, etc. The question being asked in this thread is what is the value of a 0th level spell. Going with a value of zero strains credibility, since cantrips do have value and having limitless cantrips is an unprecedented effect. The scroll scribing rules give us rules for determining the value of spells, and treats cantrips as being 1/2th level spells. That is how it is analogous.

If you want something even closer to this particular case, consider the mnemonic enhancer spell.


why stop with wiard's cantrips?
use this to cast ALL cantrips from ALL casting lists all day long.and cast them as spell like abilities so still and silent:

1; take a race with at will spel llike ability racial spell (there are more then one. i like the lightbringer elf alternate trait, but the deathwatch tifling or even the light aura aasimar might work)
2: (optinal) if you are not humanoid and would like to cast the spells without the need of a humanoid make sure you also count as a humnaoid (so if tifling take the alt ability to count as humanoid instead of outsider)
3: pick the adopted trait, picking any Geniekin (ifrit,merid,shaiten,sylph or suli) as the adopter's race and pick minor wishcraft trait.
have fun with that...

my Shenron II build (the wishgranting dragon..oracle) used this to "make" some1 become "super-saiyon" - prestigitation to color his hair and eyes, light to shine and breeze aimed upward for the whole 'power-up" visual effect: " there your power level is mximum. -go fight him..."


Dasrak wrote:
Just to be clear. They'd still be illegal in PFS even if that text wasn't there, because they need to actually come from an approved source to be PFS legal in the first place.

That is irrelevant as the text of the blog comes before PFS had the option to allow or disallow it. It was preemptively made illegal and that is something that doesn't need said if blog posts are NEVER legal.

Dasrak wrote:
If you want to argue over the word "official", then fine.

No, I'm arguing over YOU saying it's unofficial. Anyone reading this thread should know you're wrong on that point. They are completely/totally official/legal for a non-organized[PFS] game.

Dasrak wrote:
The key point is that Paizo has effectively excluded this content from the game.

That's 100% incorrect. They have effectively INCLUDED it in the game by publishing it free in a blog. It far MORE inclusive than just having it in a paid product. It's much like the PRD, where the info is included for all.

Dasrak wrote:
It has never been mentioned after the blog post, it only got mentioned in the first place because references to it were accidentally left in other chapters of ultimate magic, all traces of it were expunged in the second printing of UM, and it's not legal in any official format.

Removal from one location to another doesn't make it illegal.

Inclusion in a blog doesn't make it illegal: I pointed out several other instances of provable legal material.
Being mentioned once doesn't make it illegal: Sacred Geometry has only been mentioned once but it's still legal.

So the reasons you gave are moot. Any other reasons you want to give?

Dasrak wrote:
Feel free to use your own word to describe that, for me "unofficial" seems perfectly apt.

I prefer to use the correct words: legal and official. YOU may feel free to continue to call them something they aren't.


Dasrak wrote:
Halek wrote:
Ok so no actual or "official" rules that make it count for 1/2 then. You would just houserule it as such in your game. That rule is only for crafting. I am not sure how this is at all analogous.

When we look at the Shadow Spells ability, it establishes that a 1st level spell is worth 1, a 2nd level spell is worth 2, a 3rd level spell is worth 3, etc. The question being asked in this thread is what is the value of a 0th level spell. Going with a value of zero strains credibility, since cantrips do have value and having limitless cantrips is an unprecedented effect. The scroll scribing rules give us rules for determining the value of spells, and treats cantrips as being 1/2th level spells. That is how it is analogous.

If you want something even closer to this particular case, consider the mnemonic enhancer spell.

Those are meh houserule suggestions. Thats ok but we are trying to find the rules for this. You arent adding anything to the actual discussion. Cantrips have extremely marginal utility. The difference between jolt ray of frost and acid splash is effectively just cosmetic. Predistagation and mage hand can replicate most of the moving stuff cantrips.

Noone here is asking for the value of 0 level spells. We are trying to find out if there is a general written rule for cantrips counting as half level when counting spell levels. Seems like there isnt.


zza ni wrote:

why stop with wiard's cantrips?

use this to cast ALL cantrips from ALL casting lists all day long.and cast them as spell like abilities so still and silent:

1; take a race with at will spel llike ability racial spell (there are more then one. i like the lightbringer elf alternate trait, but the deathwatch tifling or even the light aura aasimar might work)
2: (optinal) if you are not humanoid and would like to cast the spells without the need of a humanoid make sure you also count as a humnaoid (so if tifling take the alt ability to count as humanoid instead of outsider)
3: pick the adopted trait, picking any Geniekin (ifrit,merid,shaiten,sylph or suli) as the adopter's race and pick minor wishcraft trait.
have fun with that...

my Shenron II build (the wishgranting dragon..oracle) used this to "make" some1 become "super-saiyon" - prestigitation to color his hair and eyes, light to shine and breeze aimed upward for the whole 'power-up" visual effect: " there your power level is mximum. -go fight him..."

You could ask yourself and just spam them.

I realize looking through that the shadow spells doesnt work in darkness. You would cast light on yourself and then penumbra. So it needs two spells.

Oh and look we found something else in game that gives infinite cantrips.

Scarab Sages

The strict reading would be that since it doesn’t mention cantrips, you can’t use it to prepare additional cantrips at all.


Ferious Thune wrote:
The strict reading would be that since it doesn’t mention cantrips, you can’t use it to prepare additional cantrips at all.

Are cantrips not spells?

Scarab Sages

“Cantrips” is a separate class ability from Spellcasting with separate rules. It references Spellcasting, but it is something different. You prepare them when you prepare your other spells, but as their own thing.

EDIT:

Wizard wrote:

Cantrips

Wizards can prepare a number of cantrips, or 0-level spells, each day, as noted on Table: Wizard under “Spells per Day.” These spells are cast like any other spell, but they are not expended when cast and may be used again. A wizard can prepare a cantrip from an opposition school, but it uses up two of his available slots (see below).

And I did say a strict reading. Which I’d be more inclined to go with than “infinite.” But 1/2 level is probably the balanced way to rule it, even if the language isn’t quite there in the ability.


It calls them out as spells. Shadow spells only cares that they are wizard spells. The definition of wizard spells is spells on the wizard spell list. That list includes cantrips i am not seeing your reading here.

Why does it matter that they are a seperate ability in the base class?.


I'm going to pop in to say this.

If at any point the rules break and allow things like this, it is clearly not intended. If you have discovered an "Unlimited X" option. Typically, it's not intended.

Furthermore, I would agree that everyone else's suggestion of 1/2 value. Sometimes the rules have holes, and if you want to exploit it, then you have to understand that you are going against the intent of the game.

My other suggestion is to bring it up with your GM. If he is fine with you having unlimited cantrips prepared, that's on him. But the people of these forums have given your question rational thought and found that they don't believe it to be the intent of the rules to allow infinite cantrips prepared. They are not doing this to spite you or ruin your fun, but to answer your question. They went and found the most rational solution based on the other rules' treatment of Cantrips as 1/2 and offered that as a fair solution of what the intent likely is. This is, of course, better than the possible "Minimum 1" limitation that could be imparted like pages required per spell.

In short, we are just trying to help you by answering your question. It may not be the answer you were looking for, but they are answers nonetheless.

Scarab Sages

Halek wrote:

It calls them out as spells. Shadow spells only cares that they are wizard spells. The definition of wizard spells is spells on the wizard spell list. That list includes cantrips i am not seeing your reading here.

Why does it matter that they are a seperate ability in the base class?.

Because the ability doesn’t mention cantrips and doesn’t give a method for determining how they count against the level cap. So one interpretation is they don’t count against the cap, and you can prepare an infinite number of them. Another interpretation is they aren’t mentioned in the ability, so you can’t prepare them with it. Since “Cantrips” is a separate class ability from “Spellcasting” it’s setting the precedent that when discussing preparing/casting spells, cantrips have different rules than other spells. Which they do. Since the Shadow Spells ability is referencing preparing and casting spells, it’s as fair a reading of it to require it mention cantrips separately, since the base class has to mention them separately.

Sorcerer, for example, has a Spellcasting ability which states that they know spells from the sorcerer/Wizard list. It still has to have a separate class ability for cantrips. Magus - separate class ability for cantrips. Witch as well. It’s fair to think of cantrips as a separate type of spell, because they are treated like a separate type of spell everywhere they appear.

This question has come up before with the Ring of Spell Storing, which also does not say how to treat cantrips/orisons. It seems like 1/2 level is what was generally favored there in the discussion for the same reasons posted here, and again, that’s what I would do here. But if you want to insist that doesn’t work, then we’re left with infinite or not at all. I can’t find the quote from Mark Seifter right now, but to paraphrase from memory, he’s said something to the effect that if there are two interpretations of a rule, and one of them makes it either vastly overpowered or not function at all, then go with the other interpretation (apologies to Mark if I didn’t capture the spirit of what he said right). So here we have one interpetation that results in unlimited cantrips, which seems overpowered compared to other abilities concerning cantrips. Even a 20th level Wizard can only prepare 4 cantrips. You don’t even get extras for a high INT. The other interpretation makes the ability useless for cantrips but not useless in general, since it still works fine for everything else.


Ok so RAW it works but everyone wants to and would houserule it to work as 1/2 level at their table. Fair enough.

Also Trinitys end why do you assume i am a player in this instance?

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Halek wrote:
Ok so RAW it works but everyone wants to and would houserule it

"RAW" is meaningless. Written words are always interpreted.

Apparently, your interpretation of the written words here allows this... but Ferious Thune's interpretation of the same written words does NOT.

When you say that YOU are following RAW and everyone else is houseruling you are really just claiming that your interpretation is the 'correct' one.


Halek wrote:

You could ask yourself and just spam them.

...

Oh and look we found something else in game that gives infinite cantrips.

yep speaking being a free out of turn action and all.

that was part of my point making him the wish grnting dragon(oracle). in the full 20 level build by the end he gets to use spell like abilities (so no gp cost): 2/day limited wish, 1/day resuraction , 1/day miracle.
some other 1/day sla. range from 1st to 8th level spelll (miracle and resuraction are the 7th and 9th)
also 1/day the exalted 10t level class ability that i like to call limited miracle since it's a bit less powerfull then a miracle spell.

basicly 10 oracle/10 exalted taking the elf favor class bonusX6 to count the dragon magic revulotion as 11th level level oracle retrained after 9th level spell gained for limited wish and a god that open up the magic(sub domain -divine) domain for the 5th level exalted ability. (nethys or asmondeus amoung others)


Halek wrote:

Ok so RAW it works but everyone wants to and would houserule it to work as 1/2 level at their table. Fair enough.

Also Trinitys end why do you assume i am a player in this instance?

Because you never said you were the GM, and statistically, 4/5 people are players. If you are the GM, you may feel free to rule as you like, including, but not limited to, completely changing any rule you want, as per Rule 0.


CBDunkerson wrote:
Halek wrote:
Ok so RAW it works but everyone wants to and would houserule it

"RAW" is meaningless. Written words are always interpreted.

Apparently, your interpretation of the written words here allows this... but Ferious Thune's interpretation of the same written words does NOT.

When you say that YOU are following RAW and everyone else is houseruling you are really just claiming that your interpretation is the 'correct' one.

Well no. Everyone else is adding on rules that dont say they apply. Not sayings thats not reasonable it just that you arent told to do that.

1/2 level cantrips is for crafting. This isnt crafting so it doesnt apply. Thats RAW. I dont think it is a stretch to say crafting rules dont apply to class abilities since nothing says they do.

It isnt wrong to houserule it to be 1/2 per level it just isnt how it is in the base game.


I would rule that the ability doesn’t apply to cantrips for the reasons already stated.


CBDunkerson wrote:
Halek wrote:
Ok so RAW it works but everyone wants to and would houserule it

"RAW" is meaningless. Written words are always interpreted.

Apparently, your interpretation of the written words here allows this... but Ferious Thune's interpretation of the same written words does NOT.

When you say that YOU are following RAW and everyone else is houseruling you are really just claiming that your interpretation is the 'correct' one.

Flanking gives a +2 to hit with melee attacks. That is RAW. It is unambiguous. Anyone with an interpretation that results in something other than +2 to hit with melee attacks is loony.

There are certainly rules that are ambiguous. That however does not make RAW meaningless.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
bbangerter wrote:
CBDunkerson wrote:
Halek wrote:
Ok so RAW it works but everyone wants to and would houserule it

"RAW" is meaningless. Written words are always interpreted.

Apparently, your interpretation of the written words here allows this... but Ferious Thune's interpretation of the same written words does NOT.

When you say that YOU are following RAW and everyone else is houseruling you are really just claiming that your interpretation is the 'correct' one.

Flanking gives a +2 to hit with melee attacks. That is RAW. It is unambiguous. Anyone with an interpretation that results in something other than +2 to hit with melee attacks is loony.

There are certainly rules that are ambiguous. That however does not make RAW meaningless.

Perfect example. No one has ever argued over flanking rules.


Knight who says Meh wrote:
bbangerter wrote:
CBDunkerson wrote:
Halek wrote:
Ok so RAW it works but everyone wants to and would houserule it

"RAW" is meaningless. Written words are always interpreted.

Apparently, your interpretation of the written words here allows this... but Ferious Thune's interpretation of the same written words does NOT.

When you say that YOU are following RAW and everyone else is houseruling you are really just claiming that your interpretation is the 'correct' one.

Flanking gives a +2 to hit with melee attacks. That is RAW. It is unambiguous. Anyone with an interpretation that results in something other than +2 to hit with melee attacks is loony.

There are certainly rules that are ambiguous. That however does not make RAW meaningless.

Perfect example. No one has ever argued over flanking rules.

I'll assume that was said in sarcasm.

What no one has ever argued over is the +2 to melee attacks (that I'm aware of). I chose that example because expanded upon it can show both sides of the coin. That is also why I was very specific about what was unambiguous RAW - and hence did not say flanking rules in general were unambiguous.

At the end of the day though, and after several FAQs, the flanking rules in general are pretty clear too.


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Quick note: Penumbra does not have any mention of changing the "Light Level" of the area around you, or even for yourself. It simply prevents penalties from bright light.

Whereas Shadow Spells has a light requirement of "He must spend his entire period of spell preparation in dim illumination to use this ability."

Dim illumination is a clearly defined game mechanic. For the cantrip to work it would have to have wording to the effect of "This cantrip reduces the light level to xxx, if it would otherwise be higher."
It would then also need wording explaining how it interacts with other magical light sources and DCs to overcome them, ect. As an example, the Light Cantrip.

As is, it simply removes some penalties and has some shadow flavour text, it does not modify the light level, so it would not be useful for this purpose.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Halek wrote:
Well no. Everyone else is adding on rules that dont say they apply.

Ferious Thune's argument that cantrips are called out separately from spells and thus that 'shadow caster' does not apply to cantrips does not involve any "adding on". It is entirely consistent with the "rules as written". It is just a different interpretation of those rules than the one you choose.

Even those suggesting 1/2 level for cantrips can point to other places where this IS written as evidence that it applies in this case. Just because it wasn't stated AGAIN in the 'shadow caster' write up, that doesn't mean it isn't still the rule.

Rules as written. People are just interpreting them differently. Saying 'my position follows RAW' ought to be considered the Godwin position of RPG debates.


An Eclipsed Light spell should work, yes?


Blindmage wrote:


An Eclipsed Light spell should work, yes?

Yup. As far as I can tell, that should work just fine, but only in areas of normal light :)

Good catch! That could be fun to play with at some point.

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