Spell Perfected Empowered Dazing Fireball getting old. Help please?


Advice


Hi all,

the sorcerer in the party is built to exploit this mechanic. I'm down for supporting that if you built to optimize a spell, then it should work, and it should be glorious.

The sorcerer has feats to up the DC, feats to minimize the cost of meta magic, and so on, for Fireball.

The kicker is that it is almost always a Dazing Fireball, which ends most combats at little cost to the party.

Again I'm fine with this for filler encounters, and even the odd boss, but the party is creeping in on the villain who has scryed on them their whole adventure. How does he and his troops prepare against being dazed?


lesser globe of invulnerability?


Spell Immunity, Resist energy, Protection from energy, Globe of invulnerability, Counterspell come to mind.

I'm not aware of a way to gain immunity to the dazed conditon


GM fiat: boss is immune to being dazed.

Mic drop.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber

If the BBEG has been scrying on them, he's well aware of their tricks, thus should have plans to counter all of them. Resist/protection from energy would work (can't daze what you can't damage), as would spell resistance.

I would also throw some baddies immune to fire in front of the party prior to that final encounter, just to show them that they may need a back-up plan.

Silver Crusade

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I'd do a huge protection from energy. Break the normal CL limit if you have to. Make sure they can figure out that this buff is active and that they are reducing it with damage. That way the sorcerer can still "win" with their mechanic, they just have to go through some HP first like most other characters.

Some resist energy along side that is also a good idea, but unlikely to really do much in the grand scheme. Being incorporeal gives a flat 50% reduction to damage, which could help resist energy matter. It will also make the prot energy go farther. Imp evasion with only a moderate save will reduce damage by another 50% without shutting them down. Shield other lets you take 50% less by sending the other 50% to some chump minion. Stack enough of these 50% reductions and a resist 30 might be good enough (effective 240).

My issue with globe of invulnerability and counterspelling is that it shuts the sorcerer down instead of challenging them. Same with "huge ref save + evasion".

Could always go a misdirection route and use lots of illusions, summons, teleports, and contingencies. This frustrates many players in an un-fun way though.


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A well built sorcerer should still be capable of contributing even if fireball has been shut down though. Not as decisively as a dazing fire ball, but other spells (especially non-blasts) should still be useful.


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Do they have to be able to win every encounter with 'this one weird trick' or its not fair? Even if they aren't as optimized, a sorcerer has an entire arsenal - why not dip into that?


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Equip everyone with Padma Blossom's

Shadow Lodge

Ooo, nice find andreww. :)

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 4

Surmount affliction from Ultimate Magic also lets you ignore Daze for a bit. That plus Contingency or a familiar or minion with a wand can help you out maybe. There's also the Steel-Mind Cap from the same source. get you around the daze while letting the caster deal damage.

Silver Crusade

Regarding "Couldn't a sorcerer just do other things?" -

Yes, a sorcerer could, just like your 2-handed fighter could pick up a shield and use that, or a melee cleric could cast a destruction spell or two. If a character was built to do a specific thing, is it not likely that that thing is what the player wants their character to do? Should I not be able to use my character's iconic powers, the same ones I've been using and refining for the entirety of the campaign, in the final climatic scene? Sure, provide a challenge with regard to its use, but to outright shut down what you've built up the entire campaign is rather anticlimactic, really.


The sorcerer must be running out of spell slots for this fireball unless you're running a 15 minute adventuring day. Extend the dungeon with twice as many encounters as the sorcerer has slots for their upgunned fireball. And then make 1 or 2 of those encounters immune or at least tougher using the many great suggestions above.

Silver Crusade

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Enemies with readied actions to disrupt spells.

A 3rd level cleric with a readied action to cast silence on the sorcerer's area when he begins casting a spell. Sound burst works too but isn't as good.

A low level wizard with readied actions to magic missile (or ear piercing scream if the sorcerer uses Shield regularly) the sorcerer when he begins casting a spell. Use a wand with higher caster level (as long as there is no save or it still does good damage on a failed save) to give him more punch. A scroll of ice storm is also pretty nice for this.

An archer with readied actions to disrupt the sorcerer's spell with an arrow to the throat. Bonus points if it's a human bane(or whatever the PCs' race is) arrow.

An arcanist with the arcana that lets them counterspell as an immediate action. No matter how many metamagics are layered on top of it, it's still fireball and is counterspelled just like any other 3rd level fireball spell.

An evil altar in the location that is unhallowed and spell immunity: Fireball is tied to the unhallow for the bad guys. Note that this would also let the bad guys fireball the PCs without worrying about friendly fire.

Grand Lodge

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Ready to cast Wall of Force in front of the sorcerer when he casts fireball. Now his fireball blows up on him and his party as soon as it his the force wall. Laugh at him when he can't make a save against his own DC (don't actually do that).


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Talk to your player reasonably and bring up how disruptive Dazing Spell is for you and how it makes the game not fun for you to run.

Just because you're the GM doesn't mean you shouldn't have fun also.

If players choices are making the combat too easy, then you can either make the monsters stronger or ask the offending player to tone it down. Since making the monster strong enough to just completely resist the spell is likely to make them too strong for the rest of the party, it's probably better to just ask the player to not use Dazing Spell.

As a GM, it is on my "always banned" list.

Silver Crusade

claudekennilol wrote:
Ready to cast Wall of Force in front of the sorcerer when he casts fireball. Now his fireball blows up on him and his party as soon as it his the force wall. Laugh at him when he can't make a save against his own DC (don't actually do that).

I think you mean to say, "don't actually do that out of character." Have the BBEG, laugh at him in character instead. It's totally different.


Most of the advice here is good. The problem with one trick ponies is that eventually the trick gets old, and innefective. As people have said, don't drop it on him all at once.

Surprisingly, I disagree with Claxon on this one, at least in part. Telling the player that his trick isn't fun for you anymore will not go well. He is probably still having fun with it himself. Explaining to the player that, as his infamy is growing, the fact that more and more NPCs will be specifically taking pains to neutralize his trick will quickly become tiresome for both of you, which is really the point here.

I rcommend you put a couple of your roadblocks in play before the conversation, it won't be coming from out of the blue for the player, and he will probably already be considering ways to up his game.


Elder Basilisk wrote:
A 3rd level cleric with a readied action to cast silence on the sorcerer's area when he begins casting a spell.

This doesn't actually work because silence is a 1 round cast time. The other suggestions are solid, though.


Claxon wrote:

Talk to your player reasonably and bring up how disruptive Dazing Spell is for you and how it makes the game not fun for you to run.

Just because you're the GM doesn't mean you shouldn't have fun also.

If players choices are making the combat too easy, then you can either make the monsters stronger or ask the offending player to tone it down. Since making the monster strong enough to just completely resist the spell is likely to make them too strong for the rest of the party, it's probably better to just ask the player to not use Dazing Spell.

As a GM, it is on my "always banned" list.

This would be good advice in most scenarios, but it looks like this GM is fine with it for the most part, but he wants help making THIS ONE ENCOUNTER that will make the tactic ineffective, since the BBEG of this campaign has scryed, spied, and heavily prepared for this exact group of people.


Sundakan wrote:
Claxon wrote:

Talk to your player reasonably and bring up how disruptive Dazing Spell is for you and how it makes the game not fun for you to run.

Just because you're the GM doesn't mean you shouldn't have fun also.

If players choices are making the combat too easy, then you can either make the monsters stronger or ask the offending player to tone it down. Since making the monster strong enough to just completely resist the spell is likely to make them too strong for the rest of the party, it's probably better to just ask the player to not use Dazing Spell.

As a GM, it is on my "always banned" list.

This would be good advice in most scenarios, but it looks like this GM is fine with it for the most part, but he wants help making THIS ONE ENCOUNTER that will make the tactic ineffective, since the BBEG of this campaign has scryed, spied, and heavily prepared for this exact group of people.

In that case, the Padma Blossom mentioned above is the best way to go.


claudekennilol wrote:
Ready to cast Wall of Force in front of the sorcerer when he casts fireball. Now his fireball blows up on him and his party as soon as it his the force wall.

I love that solution.


I dont see why any enemy with enough money wouldn't have access to divination and a scroll of Spellbane. This is like 5k tops. He might even consider it an investment considering how much loot would be dropped if they managed to beat the pcs. If you wanted to add counterplay you could change it to target an area or center on a cohort so the players would be thinking about ways to cut him off from his protections.

Protection from energy is a great idea. It is noticable beforehand, has multiple ways to be overcome, and easy to come by

Evasion + high reflex saves. How high stats are is only relevant as compared to enemy stats. Giving enemies rings of evasion, belts of dex, etc both increases treasure and challenge

Hostages would be another way to do make them think diffrently. Particularly if they have vulnerability to fire. This assumes they at least try to be heroic

What if the enemies spread out and have ways of removing dazed? It forces the npcs to burn actions and lets the sorcerer keep dealing damage


I have seen this in my players characters. How I handle it is to give the sorcerer something to daze and fry. They went through the effort so let them have their fun. As well I encourage the sorcerer to use other spells to get through encounters. I shut down the dazing fireballs from time to time but not often as that is not a fun thing to do.


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Say this
Whoever at paizo invented dazing spell didn't think it through. Let's not use it

Silver Crusade

Artoo wrote:
Elder Basilisk wrote:
A 3rd level cleric with a readied action to cast silence on the sorcerer's area when he begins casting a spell.
This doesn't actually work because silence is a 1 round cast time. The other suggestions are solid, though.

Wow. Didn't know that. You find new changes from 3.5 all the time. I guess sound burst would be the go-to method for a low-level cleric then. Make the fort save or lose the spell to stun. If you make the fort save, you still need to make a concentration check for damage or lose the spell.


If the BBEG has access to a cleric or is a cleric and he knows about this fireball tossing sorcerer, Spell immunity and communal Spell immunity are cost effective solutions.


WagnerSika wrote:
If the BBEG has access to a cleric or is a cleric and he knows about this fireball tossing sorcerer, Spell immunity and communal Spell immunity are cost effective solutions.

And if not, a scroll costs only 1,125 gp.

I wonder how many fireballs the sorcerer will throw, before changing to another tactic :)


Matt Duval wrote:
Surmount affliction from Ultimate Magic also lets you ignore Daze for a bit. That plus Contingency or a familiar or minion with a wand can help you out maybe.

In a contingency, sure, but Surmount Affliction is range personal. A familiar or minion can't help you by casting it (& of course while dazed you can't cast it yourself.) Placebo Effect is a touch range spell with a similar effect though.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 4

avr wrote:
Matt Duval wrote:
Surmount affliction from Ultimate Magic also lets you ignore Daze for a bit. That plus Contingency or a familiar or minion with a wand can help you out maybe.
In a contingency, sure, but Surmount Affliction is range personal. A familiar or minion can't help you by casting it (& of course while dazed you can't cast it yourself.) Placebo Effect is a touch range spell with a similar effect though.

Oh very nice!

I knew it was range personal and then forgot while I was typing. Doh!


Thanks everyone for your feedback!

I love many of these ideas:

  • Lesser globe of invulnerability
  • Protection from Energy
  • Padma's Blossom
  • Readied Wall of Force
  • Readied actions with Magic missiles to disrupt the sorcerer
  • ...

On a side note, I do think that Paizo should have considered including Dazing in all things that have immunity to stun, paralyze and so forth. Or grant the immunity to undead since it just makes sense.

Grand Lodge

You missed Spell Immunity (Communal) which someone mentioned upstream. It's be quite effective, and potentially shut down a few more PC tricks the BBEG has figured out.

I like including Daze immunity with Stun immunity, I think I'll house rule that for my home game.

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