Concentration spells were a godsend to me coming from the 3E model of spellcasting--cast as many spells as you can. And still I love how reigned in it is. I have however heard from other people that only being able to concentrate on one 'Concentration' spell at a time is their least favorite thing about 5E. And I certainly see their point.
Has anyone opened the spellcasting system up to being able to have more 'concentration' spells up and running at the same time? I can see that maybe casting that second 'concentration' spell (and keeping it up) could require an ability check (INT for wizards, WIS for clerics and druids, etc.) with a DC of 10 plus 5 per extra 'concentration' spell up beyond 1.
If damage is taken, maybe the CON save uses the same equation (The DC equals 10 or half the damage you take, whichever number is higher) plus 5 per extra spell.
Has anyone tried anything like this? If so, any comments about it?
I would probably require a caster to use a Feat (let's call it Expanded Concentration or something similar) to add a second Concentration spell that he/she could keep up. Want to be able to maintain three Concentration spells? Take a second helping of Expanded Concentration. This would require a hard choice on the part of the player as to whether or not it was really worth it to have extra Concentration spells going.
The thing about Concentration is that it is a resource that is increasingly expensive as you level - the more Concentration spells you have access to, the more valuable the Concentration slot is.
This means that spells like fog cloud and such almost never get used, because between the minuscule range and modest benefit, it is extremely difficult to justify using your Concentration on it compared to the host of other options (such as a buff spell to make you not-die). To say nothing of vampiric touch.
It also means that using casters as BBEG (*cough*Runelords*cough*) doesn't work so well in 5E unless you give said opponents the ability to concentrate on more than one spell at once.
Honestly, I think most full casters could use an extra Concentration slot or two as they advance in level, especially Wizards and Sorcerers who get precious little else other than spells. Say a second at 10th and a third at 20th as a capstone. I suspect the main reason that they don't is because that means there is more going on at once, and thus gameplay is more complex - and simple is the primary goal of 5E player mechanics.
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Maybe let you concentrate on a number of spells equal to half your proficiency bonus?
So two at 9th level and three at 17th level.
I know my cleric gets a little bored casting bless.
That... isn't a bad idea.
I'd suggest restricting it, however, to clerics, druids, sorcerers, warlocks and wizards, for the following reasons:
- Rangers do not need to have both swift quiver and hunter's mark at the same time
- Paladin-only spells tend to be rather potent, and running things like circle of power, aura of life and aura of purity simultaneously gets a little silly.
- Bards and their cherry-picking. Seriously, a 10th level valor bard running SQ+HM is flinging 4 shots a round at 1d8+5+1d6 plus weapon, which is nuts.... but personally I house rule that bards can't cherry pick from paladin or ranger lists.
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Maybe let you concentrate on a number of spells equal to 1/3 your highest spell slot? Rounded down, of course.
So 2 at 11th level and 3 at 17th level for dedicated spellcasters.
Would also restrict multiple spells to eldritch knights and arcane tricksters.
True. Also, without the ability to cherry-pick ranger and paladin spells, the silliness with bards is a lot more contained.
But seriously, ranger and paladins have given 1/2 casting, but then (like in previous editions) were given spells that were substantially more powerful than spells of equal level to compensate, on the grounds that they got those spells at higher levels. Which is overly complicated IMO, but it does work. Right up until you give a full caster the ability to take those ranger/paladin only spells and use them both earlier and more frequently than the spell was designed for. 5E bards got enough love to be an extremely strong class already, without being able to mix-n-match spells from every class. Really not sure what WotC were thinking.
I think concentration is a good thing in 5e that reigns in some of the more ridiculous Spellcasting nonsense.
However, if one were to increase the concentration, I'd say a combination of not being "allowed" past 1/2 of your proficiency bonus, but not automatically granted that.
In order to obtain it you need to use a feat to get it, as someone suggested above. You need the feet for each additional concentration spell you cast.
In addition, I might think losing the ability to cast 1/3 of your spells till the next rest each time you cast an additional concentration spell could be enough of a balancing factor to make spellcasters think twice about simply spamming spells in 5e.
5e isn't designed for casters to be able to spam spells and the concentration dynamic is there for that purpose. If one wants to change it, I think some very heavy consequences should be considered in regards to weight and balance.