Friday, October 14, 2011
Arcana Unearthed, Spell Chaining
The book has some advantages for how well it works under 3.0 and d20. It was written by Monte Cook. Malhavoc Press was a company that he founded. Being one of the primary creative forces behind a product might give one a distinct advantage when creating supplemental products for that product but then again I could be wrong.
Arcana Unearthed (I always want to write that the original way) takes the D&D setting and gives it a Talislanta or Jorune spin. The races in the game are not your traditional fare. There are humans but none of what is normal in the D&D system or under the core d20 rule set. There are some that come close to other but for the most part they are unique enough to cause a reaction from some. It was sometimes referred to as a "furry" game because it has races that are derivative of animals. I think this complaint was overblown.
The book also includes eleven new classes that are to be used in place of the other core classes. These in some cases seem to be the core classes broken down and then reassembled to make them work different and in some cases better. In the end this also helps make the setting using the Arcana Unearthed seem different enough to make it stand out.
The magic system is has also bee changed in a number of different ways. One of the ones I like best is the inclusion of the True Name concept. I am a huge fan of the Earthsea stories and the idea of every being having a true name has always been one that I liked. In a role playing game a true name that is required for some spells to be used makes for a whole new level of player interaction. Another nice touch is that the spell descriptions say specifically if a spell can be made into a magic item and the cost to do so if possible.
The book is 254 pages long and contains a lot of information. One of the detractors from the book is the fact that other than the cover everything else is done in B&W. I know that for the old guard this is the way things used to be but it is nice to have some color in a book now. Being released closer to the beginning of the d20/OGL era I think might be part of the reason for that. This is not a huge issue but it could use something to break it up a bit.
This is not an in depth review. There are a number of these on the web and most everyone has already seen and/owns a copy of this book if they are interested. The book being 3.x based may mean that many of the people who see this may not be a fan of it. I still hold out that any book can yield something that any GM can find a use for. I got this one cheap, real cheap actually, but even if you have to pay more this is one worth picking up.
Area of Effect: One Spell
Casting Time: 1 Round
Saving Throw: None
When this spell is cast the magic user is granted the ability to chain one spell of third level or less that targets them. The ability will allow the caster to cause an exact duplicate of the spell to be directed at a target of the casters choice. The ability to chain a spell will remain with the caster once this spell has been cast for 24 hours until it has been used.
The ability will also cause the spell to not affect the caster. The spell that is being chained must be one that affects a single target. The caster will need to pick a target that would be in range of the spell as if they were casting it. Once the spell is directed at someone they will need to make a saving throw. If the save is made they can chain the spell. This is done before they determine if the spell effects them or not. The spell may not be sent to the initial caster or anyone that has already chained it. If there are no viable targets in the range of the spell it can not be further chained.
Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up or conceived of back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.
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