Quickened spell?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion


Recently, during one of our sessions, I found my level 9 fighter (7 fighter, 2 paladin) facing an aboleth on a barge. The foul beast hit me with a quickened enervation spell, followed by dominate monster/person.

I lost 5 levels of fighter and was mind controlled.

The DM told me the negative levels would last for 12 hours. That's one hour per caster level, correct?

So here is my question (and admittedly, I've never played a caster, so I'm on unfamiliar ground), I thought quickened spells require a spell slot -4- levels higher than the actual spell? If enervation is a level 4 spell, wouldn't it need a spell slot from the 8th level group? I didn't think a 12th level sorcerer/wizard would have an 8th level spell slot to use.

Or am I just not understanding what's happening here? Is there items or gear that would allow this all to happen legally?

Also, considering that it was an aboleth, with sorcerer/wizard of at least level 12, what overall level was this thing? 19? :)

Thanks, and sorry if the answer is obvious, I can't seem to wrap my head around this.

Scarab Sages

Jai-Senn wrote:

Recently, during one of our sessions, I found my level 9 fighter (7 fighter, 2 paladin) facing an aboleth on a barge. The foul beast hit me with a quickened enervation spell, followed by dominate monster/person.

I lost 5 levels of fighter and was mind controlled.

The DM told me the negative levels would last for 12 hours. That's one hour per caster level, correct?

should have been 15hrs (16, capped at 15)

Jai-Senn wrote:

So here is my question (and admittedly, I've never played a caster, so I'm on unfamiliar ground), I thought quickened spells require a spell slot -4- levels higher than the actual spell? If enervation is a level 4 spell, wouldn't it need a spell slot from the 8th level group? I didn't think a 12th level sorcerer/wizard would have an 8th level spell slot to use.

Or am I just not understanding what's happening here? Is there items or gear that would allow this all to happen legally?

Also, considering that it was an aboleth, with sorcerer/wizard of at least level 12, what overall level was this thing? 19? :)

Thanks, and sorry if the answer is obvious, I can't seem to wrap my head around this.

Aboleth doesn't cast spells as Sor/Wiz, it has Spell-Like Abilities (similar, but not quite the same...)

Monsters have a Feat available to them: "Quicken Spell-Like Ability". This is dependent on CL, not on HD.

At CL16, Quicken Spell-Like Ability can be applied to a 4th level SLA. It then gets to use that SLA quickened, 3/day.

You were facing a variant Aboleth anyway, apart from the Feat, as Enervation isn't on the B1 Aboleth... but I'd expect Aboleths to vary in their powers, so seems fine to me!


Jai-Senn wrote:

Recently, during one of our sessions, I found my level 9 fighter (7 fighter, 2 paladin) facing an aboleth on a barge. The foul beast hit me with a quickened enervation spell, followed by dominate monster/person.

I lost 5 levels of fighter and was mind controlled.

The DM told me the negative levels would last for 12 hours. That's one hour per caster level, correct?

So here is my question (and admittedly, I've never played a caster, so I'm on unfamiliar ground), I thought quickened spells require a spell slot -4- levels higher than the actual spell? If enervation is a level 4 spell, wouldn't it need a spell slot from the 8th level group? I didn't think a 12th level sorcerer/wizard would have an 8th level spell slot to use.

Or am I just not understanding what's happening here? Is there items or gear that would allow this all to happen legally?

Also, considering that it was an aboleth, with sorcerer/wizard of at least level 12, what overall level was this thing? 19? :)

Thanks, and sorry if the answer is obvious, I can't seem to wrap my head around this.

It looks like he was trying to spruce up the encounter and probably made some oversights. You're right on quicken adding 4 levels, making it a 8th level slot (unless it had a Rod of Metamagic - Quicken).

Also, enervation is 1d4 levels (unless you took 2 rays for a total of 5 levels?). You can presume he had the 12th level = 12hours right, which means it would only have 6th level access RAW.
now, he could have just given it that ability - quickened enervation, to spice up the encounter, I've reskinned lots of things or added some "per day" SLA accesses to add depth to a monster's stat-block and make the combat encounter more interesting or challenging.

Was it a fun night of gaming?

If so - maybe start with that, compliment him on a challenging encounter, and then discuss with him how now out of character, and not meta-gaming during the encounter, you're doing the math and having trouble getting it to come out. Maybe just ask - did you reskin that thing? because I was doing the math and figured it had to be 15th level to blast me with that quickened enervation, and thought we were in for a TPK at our level.


Okay, per a conversation with the DM, out of session, he told me that the Aboleth was a level 12 sorcerer and however many levels of Aboleth needed to make it a CR 21 (this was vs our level 9 characters). Ugh.

Anyway, he said that the aboleth did indeed have a metamagic rod of quickening.

At the risk of appearing dense, I have to admit I don't understand how this works.

The Quicken Metamagic rod makes the Enervation spell a swift action to cast. Does it not still take up 4 spell slots higher, which the level 12 sorcerer doesn't have?

So does that mean that a greater metamagic rod of quickening would allow a level 1 sorcerer to cast a spell of 9th level origin as a swift action?

<shaking head and mumbling> :)

Thanks everyone.


Jai-Senn wrote:

Okay, per a conversation with the DM, out of session, he told me that the Aboleth was a level 12 sorcerer and however many levels of Aboleth needed to make it a CR 21 (this was vs our level 9 characters). Ugh.

Anyway, he said that the aboleth did indeed have a metamagic rod of quickening.

At the risk of appearing dense, I have to admit I don't understand how this works.

The Quicken Metamagic rod makes the Enervation spell a swift action to cast. Does it not still take up 4 spell slots higher, which the level 12 sorcerer doesn't have?

So does that mean that a greater metamagic rod of quickening would allow a level 1 sorcerer to cast a spell of 9th level origin as a swift action?

<shaking head and mumbling> :)

Thanks everyone.

Metamagic rods are expensive and have a limited number of uses a day. In return, the spell does not take up a higher level slot. Now, a 1st level sorcerer isn't quickening anything but 1st level spells (because that's all they can cast) but they could totally quicken with a metamagic rod. A 12th level sorcerer with a standard rod of quicken could quicken any of their spells.

That rod of quicken though? 75,500 gp. Or almost double any of your character's net worth. So... yeah. Maybe throw some nice heavy books at your GM?


What you guys need is a rogue. To steal that rod. Then run. Live like kings.

See? Everyone's got a use.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Jai-Senn wrote:
Okay, per a conversation with the DM, out of session, he told me that the Aboleth was a level 12 sorcerer and however many levels of Aboleth needed to make it a CR 21 (this was vs our level 9 characters). Ugh.

"Ugh" is right.

CR 21 vs. APL 9? If this is a sandbox campaign and the PCs had warning that this encounter is way too strong for them, but they pushed ahead anyway, that's one thing. Otherwise, the GM is putting the party into unwinnable situations; which is usually not fun for the players.

Jai-Senn wrote:
So does that mean that a greater metamagic rod of quickening would allow a level 1 sorcerer to cast a spell of 9th level origin as a swift action?

Only if that level 1 sorcerer could cast a 9th-level spell (not likely, unless a dragon with class levels). A metamagic rod cannot be used on a spell-like ability, supernatural ability, or a spell effect from another magic item.


Okay, thanks for all the info guys.

So any 12th level sorcerer can use a metamagic rod of quickening to cast any spell they have as a swift action while waving the requirement for any use of higher spell slots.

I think I've got it now.

Thanks again. :)


They need a hand free to hold it, it has to be the normal rod (not the lesser), and only 3 times a day, but yes, that's how they work.


Jai-Senn wrote:

Okay, thanks for all the info guys.

So any 12th level sorcerer can use a metamagic rod of quickening to cast any spell they have as a swift action while waving the requirement for any use of higher spell slots.

I think I've got it now.

Thanks again. :)

Yes and no. A rod comes in 3 forms. Lesser and greater versions exist too. It's not so much the level of you that matters as it is the level of the spell that does.

A lesser will only work on spells 3rd and lower. The next level up on 6 and lower. Greater works for 9th and lower.

So make sure you know what rod you've got first. But once you know that, all rods that do metamagic work that way. Lesser etc.. 3x a day

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