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Ed Zachary
02-28-2007, 08:36 AM
I don't believe that the rules on RTAs are very good, and I'd like to know what others think regarding them.

A Wizard (Lev 15, Dex 11) wants to fire a magic ray at a Fighter. The Wizard's attack (BAB=7) is 7+d20.

The Fighter (Platemail+5, Dex-16, NA=2) has an AC of 27.

The only way the Wizard can hit is to role a natural 20.

Does anyone else think that RTAs are underpowered?

Legitimately spell casters (Wizards & Sorcerers) should have a BAB(poor) for melee and ranged combat. It is not what they do. They are spell casters, not fighters. But it appears logical to me that a spell caster should have a BAB(good) for casting ray-type spells.

If the Wizard had a BAB(good)=15, his attack would be 15+d20, and could hit on a 12. To me, that sounds more equitable.

Farcaster - Your characters are about this level, is the scenario I presented representative of the characters in your game? Have you or any of the players encountered this problem?

ronpyatt
02-28-2007, 10:24 AM
I thought armor was ignored for touch attacks. In your example, this would mean an AC of 22.
However, I think your point is well made. Hitting things should be a skill not a BAB.

fmitchell
02-28-2007, 12:24 PM
Hitting things should be a skill not a BAB.

Agreed, although I think everything should be a skill.

Ed Zachary
02-28-2007, 01:35 PM
I thought armor was ignored for touch attacks. In your example, this would mean an AC of 22. However, I think your point is well made. Hitting things should be a skill not a BAB.

Good point... I didn't take the armor into account.


Agreed, although I think everything should be a skill.

At its core, BAB is a mandatory class skill, limited by level.

RealmsDM
02-28-2007, 01:43 PM
OK, the fighter in question here has a AC of 13 against ranged attacks- the +3 from his dex.

take weapon focus (ray) to up your ranged spell attack bonus & plug some points into dex

Farcaster
02-28-2007, 02:46 PM
OK, the fighter in question here has a AC of 13 against ranged attacks- the +3 from his dex.

take weapon focus (ray) to up your ranged spell attack bonus & plug some points into dex

Actually, the fighter in your example is wearing plate and the dex bonus is limited to +1 as a result, unless it is special magical plate or something. So, his touch AC is 11. Which your wizard would hit 80% of the time. That seems fair to me.

Ed Zachary
02-28-2007, 02:51 PM
OK, the fighter in question here has a AC of 13 against ranged attacks- the +3 from his dex. Take weapon focus (ray) to up your ranged spell attack bonus & plug some points into dex

The above situation was hypothetical, but based on an actual complaint by the Yuan-Ti Sorceress in our campaign (see Prestige Class thread). She did get a +2 racial bonus on Dex, but her bonus still wasn't good enough to consistently hit what she wanted to.

RealmsDM
02-28-2007, 03:06 PM
seems like you have to explain to your player that the drawback of ranged touch attack spells is that you gotta roll to hit. If not, they'd all be 9th level killer spells

Moritz
02-28-2007, 03:18 PM
Bah, sounds like a cry-baby wizard to me. I mean come on, fire ball, ice storm, disintegration, wail of the banshee, and other spells ad infinitum that will wipe the floor of any warrior. Now the wizard wants some auto hit point and shoot range touch spells.
I say bah.

:)

Ed Zachary
02-28-2007, 03:42 PM
Bah, sounds like a cry-baby wizard to me. I mean come on, fire ball, ice storm, disintegration, wail of the banshee, and other spells ad infinitum that will wipe the floor of any warrior. Now the wizard wants some auto hit point and shoot range touch spells. I say bah.

Sorceress, not Wizard.

Perhaps you Are accustomed to playing higher level games where experience and magic items come easy, but my 20+ year experience is mostly the opposite.

And for fun, I'd like to challenge any overconfident Wizard with my Fighter, assuming levels, abilities and items are in the ballpark of similarity.

Moritz
02-28-2007, 04:35 PM
Nah, I'm just rezzin ya.

I like lower level games myself. Anything 20+ chaffs my hide because of the immense power running around.

Skunkape
02-28-2007, 04:43 PM
And for fun, I'd like to challenge any overconfident Wizard with my Fighter, assuming levels, abilities and items are in the ballpark of similarity.

The success of either combatant in the above challenge will depend quite a bit on the circumstances of the actual encounter. If the warrior is in melee range or can get into melee range in a round or two, then he should beat the wizard, but if the wizard can keep the warrior at range, then the wizard should prevail.

Ed Zachary
02-28-2007, 04:57 PM
And for fun, I'd like to challenge any overconfident Wizard with my Fighter, assuming levels, abilities and items are in the ballpark of similarity.


The success of either combatant in the above challenge will depend quite a bit on the circumstances of the actual encounter. If the warrior is in melee range or can get into melee range in a round or two, then he should beat the wizard, but if the wizard can keep the warrior at range, then the wizard should prevail.

If a skilled and well equipped Fighter can get within 10 feet of the Wizard or Sorcerer, then the battle shouldn't last more than a round or two.

Combatants of all classes need to be mindful of the following:

1) You can't hit what you don't know is there. Both detection and the ability to remain hidden are critical.

2) You can't hit what you can't catch or get in range of. Speed and mobility are important.

3) Once you get your shot to kill or immobilize, make it count with overwhelming power.

4) You will likely be hit by some energy, weapon or spell while adventuring. You must have a wide range of protections to be able to take it.

RealmsDM
02-28-2007, 09:37 PM
Bah, sounds like a cry-baby wizard to me. I mean come on, fire ball, ice storm, disintegration, wail of the banshee, and other spells ad infinitum that will wipe the floor of any warrior. Now the wizard wants some auto hit point and shoot range touch spells.
I say bah.

:)

they already made that class.... they called it a warlock... :rolleyes:

Moritz
03-01-2007, 03:55 PM
oh yeah, i feel sorry for warlocks

Ed Zachary
03-01-2007, 04:30 PM
Someone on another thread said that there was like 50 character classes.

Sheesh... 11 is more than enough. By the time I get around to playing them all, WotC will have come out with the 5th edition.

Moritz
03-01-2007, 05:25 PM
I just don't see any point in levels that high. Monte Hall may as well be your DM handing out you complimentary bags of holding, every epic magic item, and your level 50 badges of godliness.

gurusloth
03-02-2007, 03:00 AM
Ranged touch attacks are great at lower levels, when the foes you'll be facing have ACs that are mostly derived from natural armor or worn armor w/enhancement bonuses, which the ranged touch spells ignore. By the time you get into the 15+ level range, there are a lot more types of AC bonuses to worry about, like deflection, uber-dodge (from super-high DEX scores), haste, luck, etc.

In fact, some PCs find regular armor, even enchanted armor, to be too restrictive, as it almost always has a max DEX rating and check penalties. They usually go for Bracers of Armor with additional enchantments, which totally screws mages who try and hit them with ranged touch attacks.

The solution? Wise spell selection with your later choices, choosing spells that do not require a to-hit roll to work. Usually these have Reflex saves to compensate, but some rely on Fortitude or Will, and chances are your opponent will have low saves somewhere. Do your research ahead of time in the Monster Manual, find out where the weak saves are for each monster class (make a crib sheet if you have to) and exploit them.

Farcaster
03-02-2007, 11:18 AM
Just to put it in perspective, at our last game, I pitted my group against a mature elite adult deep dragon. Being a spell caster himself, be buffed himself before the group ever engaged him, so by the time they fought him, his AC was 39. His touch AC,however, was a woefully low 12. Granted, dragon's ACs are mostly natural armor, but the point is that there should definitely be a balance. If everything the party is running into has +8 bracers of Armor, with +5 deflection bonuses, then that party better damn well be epic or something is dreadfully wrong.

Now, into the Epic game, that's where I think things start to get a little skewed against the caster for sure. The paragon template is a perfect example of this, where the creature gains a +12 insight and +12 luck bonus, both of which count into its touch AC.

Ed Zachary
03-02-2007, 03:30 PM
Just to put it in perspective, at our last game, I pitted my group against a mature elite adult deep dragon. Being a spell caster himself, be buffed himself before the group ever engaged him, so by the time they fought him, his AC was 39.

If you had about six characters that averaged 14th level, I'd put my money on the dragon.

That is if you're a mean and nasty DM who plays monsters to win [i.e. put up the maximum challenge!].

Farcaster
03-02-2007, 03:43 PM
If you had about six characters that averaged 14th level, I'd put my money on the dragon.

He almost did win, and had not the dragon been completely rational and not suffering from the effects of The Rage (Forgotten Reams, Year of the Rogue Dragons), then they almost certainly would have died. But, they did win, although at great cost of consumable items.

Moritz
03-02-2007, 04:42 PM
I always enjoy having the monster reach down into the treasure pile and use the magic items against the players, such as wands with charges.

There was one underground area where the black dragon was on an island surrounded by deep murky black water. The players were level 10 or so and the fighters couldn't close with it because the water was too deep and the dragon utilized wands, and all sorts of other things in the treasure against the players. Half the party died.

Then, another time, a dragon erected a prismatic wall dividing half the party. While the back side of the party tried to get through the wall, the front side died.

And then there's my all time favorite, put an evil wizard in a tower with a clear view of the approaching party, it really doesn't matter what level the wizard is, he's got partial if not total cover, and it takes the party a long time to get across the field/moat/traps/barbed wire to get to him.

justablacksmith
03-12-2007, 12:05 AM
Some feats to keep in mind for the wiz.. point blank shot, far shot, weapon focus ray, and run (fighters in armor are notorious for being slow).. not to mention the dash feat, if you can find it.. as for gear to help.. try a few tanglefoot bags or oil to add slippage of said fighter.. oil can be set on fire after the fighter is down as well (oops.. down evil side.. down boy..) but never forget that your wizard has brains he should use them..

justablacksmith
03-12-2007, 12:21 AM
as for the far away wizard.. a cleric of travel domain has Dimension Door and fly to close the gap quick.. a strong cleric can carry a barbarian with the DDoor in the face of the wiz for a suprize or 2.. (if there isn't a waiting assassin for support, like I ran into.. but it was still fun to see the look on the DM's face when it happened.. and the suprize/shock brought the wiz down at least)..

CAD
03-26-2007, 06:26 AM
The success of either combatant in the above challenge will depend quite a bit on the circumstances of the actual encounter. If the warrior is in melee range or can get into melee range in a round or two, then he should beat the wizard, but if the wizard can keep the warrior at range, then the wizard should prevail.

Then the wizard isn't very smart, preparation is the key: I say fire shield, and then let the fighter wind up! Of course I haven't played an arcane spellcaster in 3.x yet, does it still deal twice the damage received? Let's get some perspective though no class should predominate, and if they do something is broken (i.e. some of the fighter's feats are truely over the top!)

Ed Zachary
03-26-2007, 08:00 AM
The success of either combatant in the above challenge will depend quite a bit on the circumstances of the actual encounter. If the warrior is in melee range or can get into melee range in a round or two, then he should beat the wizard, but if the wizard can keep the warrior at range, then the wizard should prevail.


Then the wizard isn't very smart, preparation is the key: I say fire shield, and then let the fighter wind up! Of course I haven't played an arcane spellcaster in 3.x yet, does it still deal twice the damage received? Let's get some perspective though no class should predominate, and if they do something is broken (i.e. some of the fighter's feats are truely over the top!)

Under the 3.5 rules, Fireshield only does Level+d6 points of damage, and that can be negated with a good energy resistance. My Wizard uses Meta-Magic Quicken/Teleport to avoid melee. If he is forced into hand to hand combat, he's toast.