"Using a sphere ability provokes an attack of opportunity (unless cast defensively), requires a concentration check in difficult situations, ceases to function in an anti-magic field, and is subject to spell resistance." -Page 8, Spheres of Power
I don't think they're actually any of those - I've never seen it specified - but functionally, they are spell-like. Which kind of makes sense, given that they're a replacement system for spells... XD
That's fair enough. Only reason I ask is that I am trying to see if the Destruction Blast would count for a feat that says " Choose one of the energy descriptors (acid, cold, electricity, fire, force, light, negative, positive, or sonic). Spells and supernatural abilities you cast or use with the chosen descriptor inflict +1 damage per die rolled." It's not technically a spell, so I dont think it would count. But if they were Su, it would.
The best way to improve the damage is probably to use Energy Blade - play one of the low-casting, high-BAB classes, specialize in Destruction, use that as an add-on for your normal melee attacks.
Remember, Spherecasting is not like being a Kineticist. XD They have different goals for how they'll act all day long - Spherecasting, being a generally all-day thing, is intentionally less powerful than classes with pool-limited offensive abilities.
Oh, and keep an eye out for the Destruction add-on that the Patreon campaign is eventually gonna release. ^^ That'll expand your options, too.
True, true, they're not a Kineticist. I was more trying to recreate the Warlock. Plus, I figure...the Elementalist already gets 1.5 times its level in bonus damage to its first favored Element, so why not tack on some more damage? I did not, however, know about the Destruction add-on. I will deeeefinitely keep on eye open for that, thanks!
While the default sphere abilities are not "spells", they are even more similar to spells than spell-like abilities.
Sphere abilities have a spell-level (1/2 the caster level used rounded down), they provoke attacks of opportunity unless cast defensively, they can have components (depending on the drawbacks of your magical tradition), they allow for SR, metamagic can be applied to them, and sphere abilities can be counterspelled.
Finally, it is implied in the sphere sorcerer archetype that at least some sorcerer bloodline arcana apply to sphere abilities. And due to how bloodline arcana are worded, that requires sphere abilities to count as actual spells.
Also, you can create actual "spells" if you use the advanced rules for spellcrafting.
In general, if I were to GM I would rule that sphere abilities count as spells for the purpose of all paizo material that can be applied to spells. But if a GM wants to be strict, then sphere abilities is an alternate magic system that does not fall in under the categories spell, spell-like, supernatural, and extraordinary.