The spell-storing rune is really good


Advice


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The spell-storing rune is easy to overlook. It's kind of awkward to use and scales badly: a 3rd-level, 30 DC spell seems like a questionable use of an action at 13th level and only gets worse from there. But notice:

Spell Storing wrote:
Activate Single Action command; Requirements On your previous action this turn, you hit and damaged a creature with this weapon; Effect You unleash the stored spell, which uses the target of the triggering attack as the target of the spell. This empties the spell from the weapon and allows a spell to be cast into it again. If the spell requires a spell attack roll, the result of your attack roll with the weapon determines the degree of success of the spell, and if the spell requires a saving throw, the DC is 30.

The bolded part is bolded because it means that if you're willing to wait for a critical hit with your weapon, you can immediately follow up with a guaranteed critical with your spell. As you might expect, this has predictably cool applications. For instance, with a 3rd-level slot shocking grasp does 8d12 damage and change, which for one action is incredible at 13th level and never gets worse than pretty good. The more situational, but still good, hydraulic push is 10d6 bludgeoning damage plus knockback. Telekinetic maneuver can be used to disarm, and is probably the most reliable way to do so in the game.

However, you do even better with focus spells. Since in many cases it's possible to refocus right after casting your spell into the weapon, using them is often free (and so your caster friends should be easier to talk in to doing it for you), and many have great effects when unleashed on crits:

--) Moonbeam dazzles its target for the rest of the encounter, giving its targets concealment against it if it relies on sight.
--) Call of the grave prevents at least two actions.
--) Finally, the unassuming hand of the apprentice just gives you another, non-MAP-increasing crit with the same weapon you just attacked with. The damage is comparable to or better than shocking grasp at 13th level--and unlike every other spell you can store in the weapon, it actually scales.


Heck, why bother with crits? You could store basically any spell you want (e.g. shocking grasp) and after any successful hit you 3rd-action* spell attack that auto-hits.

Sure, the crit effect is amazing, but a nearly-free-spell-hit at the right moment can still be really strong.

*If you've only spent 1 so far, its your second, but you were going to use your second anyway, and that one's now your third.


Draco18s wrote:

Heck, why bother with crits? You could store basically any spell you want (e.g. shocking grasp) and after any successful hit you 3rd-action* spell attack that auto-hits.

Sure, the crit effect is amazing, but a nearly-free-spell-hit at the right moment can still be really strong.

*If you've only spent 1 so far, its your second, but you were going to use your second anyway, and that one's now your third.

Sure. Depending on the situation, I'd bet this is often the right idea.


Actually...

Spell-storing wrote:
A spell-storing rune creates a reservoir of eldritch energy within the etched weapon. A spellcaster can spend 1 minute to cast a spell of 3rd level or lower into the weapon.

Unless you have truly awesome low-level spells that don't need to be heightened beyond 3rd level to be worth the effort, this rune is worthless at the time it becomes available. And I'm not even sure willingly lowering a focus spell's level instead of using it fully heightened is possible.


Spell Storing has always been tremendous, if you have a source to recharge it. I think it was the first weapon rune I looked for in PF2. I was disappointed it became such a high level, though I agree it's wise. By then the attack difference between those dedicated to weapons and those not has separated quite a bit. It's also the level of Greater Weapon Specialization and a few martial classes bumping up in proficiency, when a weapon-using caster may need that boost to keep even(-ish).

I don't know if Paizo factored in focus spells, having a free recharge after every lull, but by the time you can afford the rune, your focus spells are too high a level to fit! Intentional? Could they be undercast? Dunno.


Castilliano wrote:
Could they be undercast?

Not according to the rule-book defining them by saying "Focus spells are automatically heightened to half your level round up, just like cantrips are."


FlashRebel wrote:
Actually...
Spell-storing wrote:
A spell-storing rune creates a reservoir of eldritch energy within the etched weapon. A spellcaster can spend 1 minute to cast a spell of 3rd level or lower into the weapon.
Unless you have truly awesome low-level spells that don't need to be heightened beyond 3rd level to be worth the effort, this rune is worthless at the time it becomes available.

Did you read the examples I gave, or do you not think an automatic 8d12 electricity damage after a crit is worth the effort at 13th level?

FlashRebel wrote:
And I'm not even sure willingly lowering a focus spell's level instead of using it fully heightened is possible.

RAW, this is probably right, though.


It's a cool rune for any martial MC caster. They have high weapon hit chance and mostly low-level spells anyway.

Also a nice spell to store is Ray of Enfeeblement. When you activate it on a crit, at least enfeebled 1 is guaranteed.


Definitely good because there is no cap for the attack ( while there is for the spell dc ).

However, as a lvl 13 item, I will probably be considering investing in something else.


masda_gib wrote:

It's a cool rune for any martial MC caster. They have high weapon hit chance and mostly low-level spells anyway.

Also a nice spell to store is Ray of Enfeeblement. When you activate it on a crit, at least enfeebled 1 is guaranteed.

Right! Though the low save DC still holds it back at higher levels. (I really think it was a bad idea to have magic item DCs not scale. While many items stay useful throughout a character's career, others—which are usually been priced as comparably powerful to them when they first appear—are only functional in tiny periods of the game. They probably shouldn't have bothered even putting the vorpal rune in the game, for instance.)

The Exchange

It is a very good rune for a full-on gish however it is not an auto-pick even for them. I would hope that every rune has some builds where it shines and others where it falls down (otherwise there is a problem with design)

You can have 2 property runes with a weapon until level 16 (when +3 fundamental comes on line) so it is competing with Dancing, Keen, Grievous, holy, flaming etc.

The question is whether the spell storing rune is incrementally one of the top 2-3 property runes for a build.

Again, I would hope that EVERY rune has specific builds where it is one of the top 2 - 3 picks and that NO property rune is an automatic top 2 - 3 pick for every build


It is also a piece of magic that's well suited to teamwork. A friendly caster can give their fighter friend spell slots to great effect.


Necro post!

Would you say you can load a spell from a scroll or want into the rune?

It says a spellcaster can spend a minute to charge the rune, but it doesn't say it has to be from their spell repertoire.


Unikatze wrote:

Necro post!

Would you say you can load a spell from a scroll or want into the rune?

It says a spellcaster can spend a minute to charge the rune, but it doesn't say it has to be from their spell repertoire.

So there's nothing to distinguish casting from a scroll/wand/stave from regular casting outside of abilities that say "from a spell slot". I would assume this means it's perfectly legal to do this.... but, you know, that's not how it worked in 1e, so expect table variation :-P.

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