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Innate sequencers/triggers is not created correctly for player charather Sorcerer


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It's intended mainly as a quality-of-life change. For sorcerers it's much more than that: it frees up a spell slot, which is a scarce resource for sorcerers.

There are also some technical issues with implementation, though I'd probably have worked around them if I thought it was a good idea on the merits.

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I totaly understand, was a huge power boost for the sorcerer.

Was wondering if there is any way of getting change log on the readme file. I have read it a couple of times over the years but normally just read the change log of the actual SCS. Did not notice that you had updated the readme file. wonder if there is a way to tell people what in the readme has been updated perhaps between major release. Just a thought!

Fantastic job on this BTW

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You can probably get it from GitHub. But theoretically any change in the readme is tracking changes in the mod itself, which should show up in the main changelog. I appreciate this one didn't; that's just an error on my part. (The changelog gets done manually, I don't have any autotracking way to manage it.)

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This issue was previously discussed a long (or depending on how you look at the modding scene, short) time ago, here:

Basically there's no way for an unmodded sorcerer in the basic game to choose both Spell Sequencer and Spell Trigger without stripping themselves of precious known spells at spell circle 7 and 8... there are a wider variety of useful spells at circle 7 than 8, and Spell Trigger has a higher power ceiling, so when playing a sorc I always took the trigger, not the sequencer.

On the other hand,  in the original game, a mage (rather than a sorcerer) can totally prepare each of a Minor Sequencer, Contingency, Spell Sequencer, Spell Trigger and a Chain Contingency so long as he finds the scrolls of all those, so depending how you look at it it sort of is just a convenience tweak for the mage (there's no guarantee of finding the scrolls before the necessary levels, but SCS also has an option to make rare scrolls more easily available).

Also, it makes sense to me conceptually that a sorcerer would have fewer of the tricky metamagic "combinations" than a mage, since their spell casting is supposed to be sort of instinctive rather than systematic.

Incidentally, I never used either the components to make sequencers innate or rare scrolls easier to find (which on the latest version is an increased diversity of random scroll drops), but if you do use the latter, the former becomes more logical, for mages.

Edited by polytope
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Yes, I was persuaded on reflection by those conversations that sorcerers probably shouldn't get the bonus - and since in any case it was technically awkward to handle the fact that sorcerers get 4th level spells a level later than wizards, I dropped it for v35.

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On 6/28/2024 at 6:39 PM, polytope said:

Basically there's no way for an unmodded sorcerer in the basic game to choose both Spell Sequencer and Spell Trigger without stripping themselves of precious known spells at spell circle 7 and 8... there are a wider variety of useful spells at circle 7 than 8, and Spell Trigger has a higher power ceiling, so when playing a sorc I always took the trigger, not the sequencer.

I couldn't disagree more. Spell Sequencer and Spell Trigger are both must haves for me for sorcerers, and I think level 7 actually is pretty lackluster.  This may be the wrong place to discuss this, but I am always curious what other people pick for their sorcerers, even though I'm fairly set in my ways.

On the topic of innate sequencers, I don't like this just because it removes the scrolls from the game. Using those scrolls to set up a Sequencer for a specific fight (when you are not high enough level to '"learn" the spell) is a valid strategy. I appreciate that it's an optional feature.

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

On the topic of innate sequencers, I don't like this just because it removes the scrolls from the game. Using those scrolls to set up a Sequencer for a specific fight (when you are not high enough level to '"learn" the spell) is a valid strategy. I appreciate that it's an optional feature.

Yes, but it's something you'll be able to utilize either only very rarely or very expensively, depending on how shops are for scrolls in your game.

7 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

I couldn't disagree more. Spell Sequencer and Spell Trigger are both must haves for me for sorcerers, and I think level 7 actually is pretty lackluster.  This may be the wrong place to discuss this, but I am always curious what other people pick for their sorcerers, even though I'm fairly set in my ways.

Well, bear in mind Spell Trigger can be recast in combat if necessary as a spell accelerator, that's still less efficient in terms of per-round actions than firing both Sequencer and Trigger but the sequencer can only unleash spells up to 4th level. Also, let's compare spell circles 7 and 8, and the things you'd want to use:

7th

  • Spell Sequencer (of course)
  • Limited Wish
  • Mass Invisibility (debatable, for large parties and groups of summons)
  • Mordenkainen's Sword
  • Power Word: Stun
  • Project Image (this one's really too powerful as implemented, should've been 9th level)
  • Spell Turning (important defence against high level single target spells)
  • Ruby Ray of Reversal (only for SCS, but there are other options)

8th

  • Spell Trigger (of course)
  • Abi Dalzim's Horrid Wilting
  • Incendiary Cloud (better damage over time than ADHW, but it's fire, curious choice)
  • Pierce Shield (If you didn't take Pierce Magic at 6th or RRoR at 7th)
  • Power Word: Blind
  • Protection from Energy (mostly for solo sorcerers, even with SCS, if you have multiple spellcasters you have more efficient options)
  • Simulacrum (seems to be "worse" in comparison to PI, for a sorc rather than F/M C/M etc.)

IWD spells component adds Acid Storm, Malavon's Rage at 7th (plus Seven Eyes, which I haven't really tried to use in game) plus Iron Body and Great Shout at 8th, which look less useful.

Sorcerers get new 7th circle choices at level 14, 15, 17, 22 and 31 (unless that's been changed), new 8th circle choices at level 16, 17, 19, 23... and would get one at level 32 if you could get past the xp cap, note that while there's a long wait until your 4th and especially 5th new spell choice, the others happen at relatively close xp breaks, for this reason and considering the relative utility of the spells slots at 7 and 8 I'd take the Trigger by itself.

Edited by polytope
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"Yes, but it's something you'll be able to utilize either only very rarely or very expensively, depending on how shops are for scrolls in your game."

I play with item randomizer as well, and generally skip most fights that don't have an item location or aren't otherwise required for quest/story. Even being able to use one scroll can be a huge boon doing a fight at (relatively) low level.
 

I just want to say before I continue that this is just my take on spells. I'm not trying to say you're wrong or don't know how to play or anything like that. Sorc. spell picks depend on personal playstyle and party composition. My opinions are based on my experiences with these spells, and maybe you know something I don't. I really like sorcerers, and I realize there are a lot of different combinations of spells that work; so these are some thoughts.


Seventh level:
Limited Wish- Ehh. It's not bad. I just don't think it's that great either. Maybe depending on party comp you can get more value out of this. The best wishes are one time only, and you can use scrolls for those.
Mass Invis.- This is totally moot if you have Project Image and  I.I. at 4th level. I agree it's a good spell though.
Mordy's Sword- Yes, this is actually an amazing spell. As good as it is though, I find myself not casting it often enough for it to be a must have. I usually take it because there's nothing better.
Power Word Stun- If something has less than 90 hp it's usually not hard to kill anyway. I have never gotten good value out of this spell with a mage, so I wouldn't take it with a sorc.
Project Image- This and Spell Sequencer are the only 2 must haves at 7th level in my opinion.
Spell Turning- This spell is actually top tier. It's really strong. The existence of Staff of the Magi makes it less important though. Depending on party comp I could see taking this if you want someone else to use the Staff though. For rare occasions when I want additional protection than just Spell Trap, I can either use a scroll of Spell Turning or the book of infinite spells to cast it.
Ruby ray- This definitely got a lot more valuable in SCS, but I don't really want to take this. It's nice, but you don't need it usually. I'm not saying it's bad by any means though.

Eighth level:
ADHW- We don't need to discuss this spell.
Incendiary Cloud- This is a very strong spell with the obvious downside of being fire and commonly resisted. I usually take it, but as one of the later picks.
Pierce Shield- I'm a big fan of this because it does two things and it's one spell pick. And since some enemies have arbitrary immunity to Lower Resistance, this does a better job than Pierce magic.
Power Word Blind- I understand this is a good spell, but usually it seems like there's something else I could be casting. Something that does damage for instance. If you're throwing one of these out there as part of spellbook dump from Improved Alacrity, I could see that. At the same time though, this spell has it rough sharing the same level as ADHW. Also I really don't like that this doesn't go through MR. If I already had to lower something's MR it feels even more like the next spell should be damaging.
Protection From Energy- I'm really not a fan of this spell. I don't think it's outright bad or anything, but I usually take the individual elemental protections that offer 100% and last a lot longer. The exception being Electricity. The divine Protection from Lightning usually lasts long enough, and I play with a cleric. 
Simulacrum- I do like this spell. Yes, it's not overtly broken like PI, but it's still nice to have in some fights. It doesn't get dispelled by True Sight and you can still do stuff with your actual character while using this spell.

I honestly am only using the Divine IWD spells in my game, not the Arcane ones. If we're talking IWD Spells as well, Mind Blank seems like something you'd want if you're specifically playing solo Sorc. Acid Storm seems like it could be a good spell, but I like Death Fog so it seems redundant. Malavon's Rage might be good. Some spells seem good on paper, but might not actually be good in practice. The other ones I'm not really sure about.

I usually only play with 2 or 3 people in my party as well. Maybe you're getting more value out of the party wide buffs from Limited Wish having a bigger party is what I'm guessing. The negative plane protection is almost certainly going to be moot by the time you get that spell with a Sorcerer if you're playing a small party, if that's the reason you're taking it. Like I said before I could be missing something.

You are right that it takes a while to get those 4th and especially 5th spell picks. I agree that sacrifices must be made. I just personally think Spell Sequencer offers too much value to give it up. But once again, there's no one list of spell picks that works; there are many combinations that work.
 

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2 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

Limited Wish- Ehh. It's not bad. I just don't think it's that great either. Maybe depending on party comp you can get more value out of this. The best wishes are one time only, and you can use scrolls for those.

The main uses I get out of it are wishing for Minor Globes on the whole party, protecting against some particularly bad low level spells (Unholy Blight if good aligned, Slow, Web, Doom etc.), also the option to recharge 1 spell each at circles 1-4 for the party (recover precious "low tier" spells like Remove Magic and Death Ward... priests benefit too!) lastly the wish for the entire party to be healed might seem inefficient in terms of hp healed, but it does also cure blindness and deafness on the entire party thus is a great counter to Unholy Word for instance (and Nature's Beauty... if you run into anyone who casts it). Obviously only for party sorcerers, don't bother if solo.

2 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

Power Word Stun- If something has less than 90 hp it's usually not hard to kill anyway. I have never gotten good value out of this spell with a mage, so I wouldn't take it with a sorc.

IMO it's more useful for a sorcerer than a mage, because of their free casting and deciding on the fly how to use slots if an opportunity appears. Very few enemy mages have enough hp to resist a Power Word: Stun even if their protections prevent direct spell and physical damage, while it can be cast before the enemy is out of "Breach range" i.e. all that's needed is to strip Spell Turning or Spell Trap, while the mage could still be running a Spell Immunity that prevents Breach. Also completely stripped and Breached AI controlled mages in SCS do tend to rebuff with Spell Triggers or Contingencies frustratingly fast, instantly stunning them prevents that.

3 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

Protection From Energy- I'm really not a fan of this spell. I don't think it's outright bad or anything, but I usually take the individual elemental protections that offer 100% and last a lot longer. The exception being Electricity. The divine Protection from Lightning usually lasts long enough, and I play with a cleric.

That one is definitely only for a solo sorcerer, or sorc without spell-casting companions, it's not viable for them to take each of Pro Fire, Pro Cold, Pro Electricity, Pro Acid and Pro Magic Energy.

3 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

Mind Blank seems like something you'd want if you're specifically playing solo Sorc.

You'd be at least lvl 16 before you get it and, since it's not likely you took a purely defensive spell as your only 8th level cast, probably more like 19, at that point relying on saving throws against most mind affecting spells becomes viable considering other buffs like Blur, Spirit Armor and the magical equipment you've found. Some are really hard to save against, like succubi charm spells, but the Staff of the Magi gives blanket immunity to Charm. Taking Globe of Invulnerability for a solo sorcerer seems like a better idea, as it will block Malison along with most other enchantments and Improved Haste would be a lower priority if solo.

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I didn't know the limited wish heal effect cured any status effects. That actually is really cool. I'm still not sure if it's worth a slot for me personally though. As I expected, you are getting a lot more value out this spell by having a bigger party. Thanks for the info.

For Power Word Stun this seems like an edge case scenario, but maybe in practice you are getting good value out of it due to differences in playstyle. I am willing to concede I may be overlooking this spell.

About elemental protections (sorry for how long this ended up getting):
Taking Pro Cold is the one that kind of hurts because it's the same level as Pro fire, and 3rd level is pretty crowded already. Pro electricity is thankfully irrelevant for solo because of the Cloak of Reflection. Otherwise it would have the same problem being at 5th level with Pro acid, which is a very important spell, in my opinion. There's no equivalent to it elsewhere in item form or Divine magic. Since the first 4 fifth level spell picks are already spoken for anyway, you're getting Pro. Electricity quite late if at all. I'd use potions of absorption (or insulation and the green scrolls) before the cloak is available for situations where you must have electrical resistance specifically and can't get by with like a minor globe to deal with lightning bolts. (I think chain lightning is really the only potential issue). Pro magic energy is a top tier spell, and it surprises me if not everyone is taking this. Your PI can cast all these spells on you (and your whole party if you're not solo), so you're not really weakening yourself. I'm not getting why this wouldn't be viable solo. You don't really need that many damage spells. 1 at each level that also has these buffs is usually plenty. You also don't really need too many utility spells if you are taking the right ones. The reason why sorcerers are so good is because you actually don't need too many unique spells to have viable strategies for every fight in the game. You saying it's not viable to have all these spells which would lead to a lot better protection than having the 8th level pro. energy spell seems like an arbitrary statement to me. Additionally you can use these spells to buff your planetar as well to take care of the few resistances they don't have (Magic energy and Acid). And yes, I do realize people are equipping items like the ring of fire resistance or the belt of inertial barrier to stack with pro energy. I find this to be more limiting than taking additional protection spells. If you're using your ring slots, you're sacrificing things like the ring of wizardry and the ring of acuity. Also, since this is an eighth level spell that probably is going to be your 3rd pick at best, this is a long time to go without ADHW protection. I also don't care for Dragon Disciple, but I admit if you modded your spell tables you have removed the downside of this version of the sorcerer. (This feels like cheating to me, but everyone can play how they want). Either way DD only adds fire resistance, as far as what is pertinent to this discussion. If you are going this route to be super safe and protect from everything, I definitely think taking Pro Cold is the one that hurts the most. Cold damage is somewhat uncommon until later on for the most part thankfully. There are a lot of potions of cold resistance in the game, and the 10 turn duration is not terrible. If you buy out all the stores, it should be more than enough. You can also supplement this with the arcane scrolls and the green pro cold scrolls. I suppose one could argue DD is better specifically if you are using the "un-nerfed" spell charts. This would allow you to take Pro Cold instead of Pro Fire and not clog up your level 3 picks. Again though, I realize there are other strats that work with combinations of spell picks, but I'm telling you this kind of thing does work, at least for me. I don't consider taking a lot of the specific protections to be sacrificing a pick at all, with the only possible exception being the third level spells.

About Mind blank, it does come too late, but I can't just dismiss this spell. Maybe in practice it's not great because it is an eighth level spell, but I'd want to test it if I was playing solo. The biggest weakness of solo arcane casters is losing Death Ward and Chaotic Commands. These spells are 2 of the best in the game, and provide an absurd amount of safety in a general, long lasting way that you just can't replicate. Sure you can use different casts of S.I. to cover your bases, but this is obviously not as good of a solution, mostly because they don't last very long even fully scaled. Potions of Clarity help (especially when you are low levels), but they are quite scarce and do nothing against paralysis. Mind Blank does do a good portion of what Chaotic Commands does. Maybe Mind Blank just isn't good enough because it doesn't also protect against psionics (and obviously does nothing for instant death). Although it seems like mindflayers don't use their psionics near as much since SCS gives them a list of additional new abilities. Plus, the Greenstone Amulet exists. I agree that it's unfortunate that it's at 8th level, but it's a powerful effect none the less. I generally avoid strats that rely on saving throws in general, but I could see it being more viable if you're using Spirit armor and I.I. Fourth level is starting to get a bit clogged though if that's your route. I've never seen anyone advocate for Globe of Invulnerability. It's not that it's a bad spell; it's just another spell at a crowded level of really good spells. Unfortunately this does nothing against Chaos (generally the most dangerous spell that requires a save) or innate confusion attacks from enemies. It also does nothing against symbol stun, which Mind Blank should protect against, if the description is to be believed. I realize S.I. works for a lot of these cases, but it'd be nice to take some of the weight off of that spell. And once again, S.I. is a (relatively) short duration spell. If you are using S.I. Enchantment, that does cover a lot of these bases though (Chaos and Malison). I don't use the component that moves symbols and power words to enchantment school because S.I. is already quite powerful, and that component buffs it further by decreasing the likelihood of needing to cast S.I. Conj., at least specifically in solo play I think this is objectively true. (It's pretty much just insects you need to worry about if this is installed).

Also it's worth noting that if you're mad enough to be using spell revisions, the good aligned planetar can cast Death Ward and Chaotic Commands. So a good or neutral aligned sorcerer is officially invincible once you get to level 18 if you're using SR.

Sorry again for the length of the post, but I quite enjoy discussing this stuff. Thanks again for the additional information.

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9 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

Sorry again for the length of the post, but I quite enjoy discussing this stuff.

It is honestly quite nice to see active discussions about gameplay. As for my two cents on it, Pro. From Energy is good for re-buffing when you get dispelled. I don't think I've ever taken it on a Sorc (scrolls suffice for this purpose, but you can't use it during IA if so) but I sometimes memorize it on my high level mages in case they get dispelled. I wouldn't bother on no-reload though but if the aim is to not die, then being instantly resistant to most things that can hurt you is really handy. IA as means to re-buff is also pretty important as far as survival is concerned, but dispel situations are so close to a run ending situation that it's hard to justify this instead of trying to prevent getting dispelled.

9 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

I've never seen anyone advocate for Globe of Invulnerability. It's not that it's a bad spell; it's just another spell at a crowded level of really good spells.

It's a really good spell but I think the main issue with it is that it isn't strong enough for a 6th level spell. I wrote a tweak to make it block level 5 spells (mostly to make it so SCS mages are less affected by Cloudkill and thus not as easy to take down), and I think that makes it a top tier spell but in the base game MGoI is just way too strong (4th level blocks up to 3rd, vs. 6th level blocking only up to 4th).

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18 hours ago, JDSilvergun said:

As I expected, you are getting a lot more value out this spell by having a bigger party. Thanks for the info.

Most of the time I use a party of four and consider a larger or smaller party to be making things harder for myself (in the case of a six person party, not only dividing the XP six-ways but simply the path-finding getting really bad with that many, plus the difficulty of outfitting them all usefully and sharing scrolls between the non-sorcerer arcane casters), but there is a strong argument that three is more optimal, if going with three and they're all spellcasters Limited Wish for spell recharge becomes that much better.

About Protection from Cold, cold resistance is only worthwhile with SCS or some other mods, and in recent versions of SCS its only because I have seen 3 X Cone of Cold Spell Triggers, which are potentially 60d4 + 60 damage to the face. Still, if you have a cleric the 2nd circle priest spell Resist Fire/Cold halves Cold Damage without being a sorcerer pick, and what's more, the priest spell Chant (cast as a pre-buff, works well if you time a Limited Wish for globes to resolve slightly later so that enemies can't scam you with a "counter-Chant") substantially reduces spell damage from those spells with a lot of small dice (not so much against, say Comet or Dragon's Breath because those are d10s). However, low hp characters should probably not be venturing close enough to a high-level enemy mage to risk Cones of Cold, and if a solo sorcerer you're likely to have hit level 16 and opened up the possibility of simultaneously protecting yourself from most non-physical damage with ProEnergy.

Acid Resistance is a bit the same, only useful against Draconis, the various SCS black dragons, and/or if you've installed IWD Arcane spells so that you have to worry about enemy Vitriolic Sphere and Acid Storm. I'm also reasonably sure that 75% resistance (to cold, acid, whatever), even if it doesn't feel as safe as 100% still deprioritizes you as a target for spells with that damage type, which is what you mostly want, to prevent the AI mage from casting that spell, the duration of the lower level spells seems better, it's just that sorcerers have a lot of casts for each known spell (even if you're not utilizing Project Image, which I'd rather not, because it really is OP as a 7th circle spell and that becomes obvious when you're using it to cast Time Stops and Imprisonments) and burning through your spell slots at circles 3-5 (you know, Remove Magic, Secret Word, Stoneskin, Breach, Spell Immunity) can be almost worse than running out of 8th level spells.

8 hours ago, CrevsDaak said:

It's a really good spell but I think the main issue with it is that it isn't strong enough for a 6th level spell. I wrote a tweak to make it block level 5 spells (mostly to make it so SCS mages are less affected by Cloudkill and thus not as easy to take down), and I think that makes it a top tier spell but in the base game MGoI is just way too strong (4th level blocks up to 3rd, vs. 6th level blocking only up to 4th).

It would be good to have such a thing, but make sure the AI knows it can't breach someone under your enhanced globe. I think that should probably be an 8th level spell BTW.

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