Orisons and Cantrips


Combat & Magic

Liberty's Edge

Would it be unbalancing to change the orisons and cantrips into immediate actions. They are the most minor of magics, yet rarely do they get used... even with the "unlimited times per day" that Pathfinder offers. Anyone?


Well stuff like frost ray might be a bit harsh with immediate actions?

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Card Game, Rulebook Subscriber

In our play test, I'm using light and detect magic all over the place. Prestidigitation has also seen use and we're just getting started. In my home RotRL game, cantrips are likewise seeing a lot more use now that they are reuseable.

The only change I would really like to see made to the 0 level spells is to open them up to bonus spells based on ability score bonuses like every other spell level.


Arnim Thayer wrote:
Would it be unbalancing to change the orisons and cantrips into immediate actions. They are the most minor of magics, yet rarely do they get used... even with the "unlimited times per day" that Pathfinder offers. Anyone?

I find my Cleric of Desna constantly using Resistance and Guidence both upon himself and his companions. I am thrilled with the Idea of orisons and cantrips as limitless abilities and feel it is just enough. As an immediate action it would be too much.


I don't see the need for them to be immediate actions, since they are being used quite often by my local vic...group.

As far as bonus slots go, I've always tried to figure out why they didn't get them in the core rules. I've been house ruling that a caster gets bonus 0th level slots equal to their casting ability modifier for quite a while.

As an aside from that, I was under the understanding that swift and immediate actions were not part of the SRD itself.

Liberty's Edge

My mistake; I was allowing them unlimited use of the cantrips and orisons. No wonder my players were loving them. As an immediate action, they become sick real fast.

PC 1: "I failed my save by +1."
PC Cleric: "I use my immediate action to cast Resistance to grant him a +1."

As an aside, I too wonder why cantrips and orisons are not included on the bonus spell listing. It makes very little sense.


Immediate and Swift actions are part of the SRD, the main problem is that only the psionics section really makes any use of them. But they are part of the system.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pawns, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber
DracoDruid wrote:
Well stuff like frost ray might be a bit harsh with immediate actions?

For once you and I agree on something. :)

No.. Orisions and Cantraps should remain how they are. The 0 level combat spells are too important to lose now that they're free to cast. Wizards (and probably sorcerers) NEED to be able to fall back on them when they're out of spells and can't use their powers.

Liberty's Edge

Cnatrips .... Cantraps ...

Sorry, I'm easily amused


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

My party is now using Detect Magic constantly. Mage hand is always used to try to open doors with the caster in the back and the Fighter in the front. And Light was traded for Dancing Light, reset every minute and before every door opening. Resitance is also used before door opening.

It changed the mood (a lot of little magic floating around) not in a good or bad way, just different. And it speeds up the dungeonneering (not so much "Where's the light source?" since the caster can move Dancing light around easily and "Who spends the move action to open the door?" etc.).

I've warned the caster that if they get suprised I'd call for a d10 for the rounds left on Dancing Light and he enjoyed the idea a lot.

I'm a little scared of the next social encounter ...

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pawns, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

Open a door in combat is a move action... if they're not in combat why is that a concern?


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
SirUrza wrote:
Open a door in combat is a move action... if they're not in combat why is that a concern?

Not mutch of a concern, just the option of moving in AND attacking for the point-man (woman actually) as soon as the door is open.


Aurora of Obsidian wrote:
As far as bonus slots go, I've always tried to figure out why they didn't get them in the core rules. I've been house ruling that a caster gets bonus 0th level slots equal to their casting ability modifier for quite a while.

I'v been toying with that idea, though with the "at will" of cantrips/orisons I thing I would modify you approach a little.

"A caster would gain a number of bonus cantrips/orisons equal to their caster level, not to exceed their Intelligance/Charisma/Wisdom modifier."

That way it would give the cantrip ammount a bit of a boost as the character advances, and not just a large lump at 1st level.


I'd like to see certain orisons/cantrips made into swift actions:

Resistance
Guidance
Virtue
Arcane Mark
Open/Close
Know Direction
Summon Instrument

maybe Mage Hand and Light

Leave the rest with their regular casting times.


I would also like to see the number of cantrips increased. I'll even go so far as to say that I'd like to see wizards and sorcerers gain their Int/Wis bonus as a number of bonus cantrips/orisons and gain a small number of additional ones as they level. By 20th level then a caster could have a pretty healthy number of cantrips at his command but then ... they are 20th level.


Arnim Thayer wrote:
Would it be unbalancing to change the orisons and cantrips into immediate actions. They are the most minor of magics, yet rarely do they get used... even with the "unlimited times per day" that Pathfinder offers. Anyone?

In my playtests, which have taken the characters through level 3 in the last four weeks, the orisons and cantrips have been used quite often. They may see less use as the characters increase in level, but I don't see any good reason to make them immediate actions. If they're not powerful enough to do much good as standard actions, then why make them immediate actions?


I like the idea of extra cantrips/orisons based on high ability scores, but I'd probably have them accrue at the same level/rate as bonus 1st level spells.

With these as unlimited-use SLAs, I don't want 1st level wizards or whatever starting out with a gazillion of them. Just a few that they've honed while apprenticing.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pawns, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber
Slime wrote:
SirUrza wrote:
Open a door in combat is a move action... if they're not in combat why is that a concern?
Not mutch of a concern, just the option of moving in AND attacking for the point-man (woman actually) as soon as the door is open.

Which can be done if the person opening the door stands in the adjacent square to the door instead of infront of it..

wall =
door -
opener x
attacker y
monster z
open square .

z..
...
=-=
x..
.y.


SirUrza wrote:
Slime wrote:
SirUrza wrote:
Open a door in combat is a move action... if they're not in combat why is that a concern?
Not mutch of a concern, just the option of moving in AND attacking for the point-man (woman actually) as soon as the door is open.

Which can be done if the person opening the door stands in the adjacent square to the door instead of infront of it..

wall =
door -
opener x
attacker y
monster z
open square .

z..
...
=-=
x..
.y.

Unless the corridor is only 5 feet wide, which then means you have to be in close quarters to open it. Not actually having anyone open the door may also by pass some traps. Purely cosmetic most of the time.

I am not a fan of having them made into swift or immediate actions, I think it may get slightly abused.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
All DMs are evil wrote:
SirUrza wrote:

... Which can be done if the person opening the door stands in the adjacent square to the door instead of infront of it ...

Unless the corridor is only 5 feet wide, which then means you have to be in close quarters to open it. Not actually having anyone open the door may also by pass some traps. Purely cosmetic most of the time.

I am not a fan of having them made into swift or immediate actions, I think it may get slightly abused.

Bingo!

And ditto on the casting time change being a risk of abuse (daze comes to mind).

Sovereign Court

I believe there are some alternate cantrips and orizons in an issue of Dragon. Issue # someone? I agree that changing a few of them (but not Ray of Frost and the like) to immediate actions would not be game-breaking.

As for bonus cantrips/orizons by ability score, I'm rather against it. Any ability that is useable at will should have limited options imo, and five or six should be enough. Additionally, 0th level spell selection can help to make even low-level casters distinct from each other.

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