Monday, July 26, 2010

D&D Basic Set part 7

2nd LEVEL MAGIC-USER SPELLS

The spell list given here is the same as from Supplement I, with two new spells added: Audible Glamer and Ray of Enfeeblement.

Audible Glamer: Simply put this spell allows the caster to create illusory sounds, equal to 2-8 people conversing normally. A greater volume of sound can be created by higher level casters. To be honest, I'm kind of surprised that this hadn't already been created for the Illusionist class.

Continual Light: This spell has been hugely depowered. Whereas in OD&D it cast light in a 240 foot diameter, now it does so in a measly 60 foot diameter.

Darkness: This spell was formerly known as Darkness 5' Radius. That 5' Radius mentioned is important. Holmes has interpreted that as a typo, taking it to mean 5" Radius – which in OD&D terms means 50 feet. A strict by-the-book reading of the original spell would have had it affecting an area about 10 feet in diameter, while this version affects a 100-foot diameter. Certainly the Holmes version is much more useful.

Detect Evil: Just like the spell in OD&D.

Detect Invisible: Just like the spell in OD&D.

ESP: Whereas before the spell was said to be used for detecting the thoughts of creatures lurking behind doors or in darkness, it is now clarified that the spell can affect any creature within range. Also, we now learn that the undead do not think, and are thus immune to the spell. What, even vampires and liches?

Invisibility: This spell is the same as in OD&D, but it does not refer back to Chainmail. Characters being unable to remain invisible while attacking is also made much clearer.

Knock: Just like the spell in OD&D.

Levitate: The spell description here leaves out the speed at which the target can move, which is strange. Holmes is usually very good at including all of the details. He’s added a range to the spell that shows how far away the caster can be to cast it upon others (as opposed to the range that determines how far away from the original point the target can move.)

Locate Object: A duration of 2 turns is provided for this spell.

Magic Mouth: Just like the spell in Supplement I (except that example character Flubbit the Wizard has been removed).

Mirror Image: Just like the spell in Supplement I.

Phantasmal Forces: Just like the spell in OD&D, except that it specifies that the illusion only has a visual component; it does not have sound or smell. The caster’s going to have to be mighty clever to create a convincing silent monster.

Pyrotechnics: Just like the spell in Supplement I.

Ray of Enfeeblement: This spell creates a ray that drains the target of 4 points of strength. This loss of strength also causes the target’s damage output to drop by 25%.

Strength: In Supplement I, this spell gave a Cleric 1d6 points of strength, and a Thief 1d4 points. In the Basic Set this has been reversed, with Clerics getting 1d4 and Thieves getting 1d6. It’s a strange reversal, and I wonder myself if it was a typo. But I like anything that boosts Thieves, so I’m in favour.

Web: The range of this spell has been cut from 30 feet to 10 feet. Otherwise it’s the same, with the addition of a line stating how long it takes a normal man to break through the web. And it’s also really helpful that the spell no longer refers you back to the Staff of Wizardry entry to learn how it works.

Wizard Lock: Just like the spell in OD&D, except that it now has a specific range.

3rd LEVEL MAGIC-USER SPELLS

The list of 3rd level spells is given, and is identical to the one from Supplement I. But no spell descriptions are given; Holmes has provided the list as an example of what the more powerful spells are, leaving the details either to the DM, or to other D&D products.

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