Which wizard sub-classes can use tomes?

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I was building a mage using the online CB and noticed that implement focus (tome) was not a feat option available to me. This had me confused as I thought all wizard builds could use tomes as implements. So I went to the class descriptions in the CB and discovered that the only wizard sub-class that is described as being able to use tomes is the arcanist (PHB wizard).

This had me very confused as I thought that all wizards could use tomes. What had me even more confused is that the Sha'ir subclass can't use tomes despite being in the same book that had all of the new tome feats.

Can someone clarify this for me? Are arcanists the only subclass that can use tomes?
There is a confusing issue about this because specifically only the Arcanist can, but there is a line in Magic Emporium about how "All Wizards are proficient in tomes." Now that line was written when "Wizard" meant the Arcanist, but now that "Wizard" means basically all Wizard sub-classes one can argue there is a rule which states the Mage/Witch/etc are proficient in Tomes, despite the fact that they aren't according to their class summaries.
Arcane Power said all wizards when the "arcanist" was the only wizard
When Mordenkeinin's said it the mage and the arcanist were the two types of wizards.

I strongly beleive mages, bladesingers, witches, and sahir should all be able to use tomes but i doubt the CB will get fixxed before 5E, i mean D&D next.   
The sea looks at the stabillity of the mountian and sighs. The mountian watches the freedom of the sea and cries.
I strongly beleive mages, bladesingers, witches, and sahir should all be able to use tomes but i doubt the CB will get fixxed before 5E, i mean D&D next.   

That isn't what the rules actually say in the class summaries, though, and it is pretty clearly not RAI since the entire argument depends on a line from a book that was written during the essentials transition. So I agree the CB won't be "fixed" because, at least in this regard, it isn't broken as far as WotC is concerned.
Heroes of the Elemental Chaos also claims that "all Wizards can use Tomes".  This came up in Encounters this season- the random treasure table includes a Tome (Chronicle of the Dawn War), but the only legal Wizards (Mage and Sha'ir) don't specifically list Tomes as implements.
"You can always judge a man by the quality of his enemies." -The Doctor, Remembrance of the Daleks
Heroes of the Elemental Chaos also claims that "all Wizards can use Tomes".


Yeah. HotEC page 153: "Wizards automatically have proficiency with using tomes as implements." In an unambiguously post-Essentials book (where "wizard" cannot legitimately be interpreted to apply only to the arcanist subclass). In the very book that introduces the sha'ir subclass of wizard, in fact. That's pretty hard to argue with from either a RAW or RAI angle.
"There's an old saying that all it takes for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing. I've always had a problem with that. If you do nothing to oppose evil, then how are you 'good'? To turn aside and allow evil to flourish is to collaborate with it. You ask for mercy. You claim you have done nothing. That 'nothing' is why you deserve no mercy." - Lorian Karthfaerr, drow paladin of Avandra Robin Laws says I'm a Storyteller:
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I feel those statements are incorrect remanents from older days when Wizard was a class.

What is important is under any class write ups, if It has proficiency with Tome or not. This is the entry that indicate wether or not a class can use an implement. Not all Wizards have Tome proficiency.


[sblock]

Wizard (Sha'ir) - Implement: Orbs, staffs, wands 
Wizard (Bladesinger) - Implement: Orbs, staffs, wands 
Wizard (Witch) - Implement: Orbs, staffs, wands 
Wizard (Arcanist) - Implement: Orbs, staffs, wands, tomes

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

I feel those statements are incorrect remanents from older days when Wizard was a class.


Well, the rules text is there. What you or I feel about it doesn't really matter from a RAW viewpoint. ;) If you think it's a mistake, despite (or because of) the fact that the same text appears in mutiple books, then it would be a good idea to suggest it as errata.

What is important is under any class write ups, if It has proficiency with Tome or not.


I don't think it is possible to say which has priority; this is not something like a "text vs. table" discrepancy, but "text vs. text". So, logically, both should apply.

Rule 1 says "You can do X".
Rule 2 says "You can do A, B and C."

Rule 2 does not imply that rule 1 does not apply.

The subclass write-ups for the bladesinger, mage, witch and sha'ir state that you can use orbs, staffs and wands as implements. The aforementioned rules text in various books states that wizards can use tomes. RAW, all wizards can use tomes. Disallowing bladesingers, mages, witches and sha'irs from using tomes would require errata at this point.

If the text allowing all wizards to use tomes had not been included in HotEC, I'd agree there was a case to be made that only arcanists are supposed to be proficient with tomes by RAI. But, given that that text does appear in that book, long after it stopped being reasonable to interpret "wizards" as "arcanists", it is just as likely that the mistake lies in the subclass write-ups (copy-pasted from the original pre-tome PHB1 wizard) and that RAI really does align with RAW in this case.
"There's an old saying that all it takes for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing. I've always had a problem with that. If you do nothing to oppose evil, then how are you 'good'? To turn aside and allow evil to flourish is to collaborate with it. You ask for mercy. You claim you have done nothing. That 'nothing' is why you deserve no mercy." - Lorian Karthfaerr, drow paladin of Avandra Robin Laws says I'm a Storyteller:
Show
You're more inclined toward the role playing side of the equation and less interested in numbers or experience points. You're quick to compromise if you can help move the story forward, and get bored when the game slows down for a long planning session. You want to play out a story that moves like it's orchestrated by a skilled novelist or film director. Storyteller 92% Tactician 83% Method Actor 75% Butt-Kicker 67% Power Gamer 67% Specialist 58% Casual Gamer 8%
Well, the rules text is there.



A rule or a statement said as a general assumption ? Where is this text exactly discussed ? (under what game elements ?)

The only rules concerning Classes Implement proficiencies are contained within their write ups Implement entries. (or document errata modifying it)

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

I suggest we all submit a request via customer service to have this issue resolved one way or the other. This is the kind of confusion that can't be left unanswered once 5e launches because it will never be revisted. Now is the time to get this cleared up. So please submit a request. The more who submit on an issue, the more likely it is to get in the hands of the right people who might do something about it.
I suggest we all submit a request via customer service to have this issue resolved one way or the other. This is the kind of confusion that can't be left unanswered once 5e launches because it will never be revisted. Now is the time to get this cleared up. So please submit a request. The more who submit on an issue, the more likely it is to get in the hands of the right people who might do something about it.

Hahahahahahahahahahaha.

We're not really dealing with a competent group of people who actually care, here. I could bring this up directly with a developer and nothing would ever be done about it.
A rule or a statement said as a general assumption ? Where is this text exactly discussed ? (under what game elements ?)


The same text appears in every book that contains tome implements, AFAICT. For example, HotEC page 153. It's unambiguously a piece of rules text and it unambiguously states that wizards are proficient with tome implements. If this text only appeared in books published before there were any wizard subclasses, it could be read as applying only to the PHB1 wizard (i.e. the arcanist). As it continues to appear every time tomes are published, many months after multiple wizard subclasses were introduced, and in the same book as one of those wizard subclasses, it seems perverse to me to continue to insist that it really means "arcanist" when it clearly says "wizard".

It might be a mistake. Or the "implements" entries in the later wizard subclass write-ups might be mistakes. One or the other must be wrong and should be errata'd. However, the rules are not, strictly speaking, contradictory. If two pieces of rules text each give lists of things you can do, and neither rule explicitly invalidates the other, then you can do all the things in both lists. In other words, if it's not strictly necessary to assume a contradiction between two pieces of rules text, don't go assuming one.

The only rules concerning Classes Implement proficiencies are contained within their write ups Implement entries. (or document errata modifying it)


The problem is that this is not true anymore.

There was a period of time between tome implements first being introduced and the errata to the PHB1 wizard that added tomes to the "class implements" part of their class write-up. Are you really claiming that wizards could not legally use tomes during that period, despite the rules text accompanying the tomes themselves that clearly stated that they could?
"There's an old saying that all it takes for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing. I've always had a problem with that. If you do nothing to oppose evil, then how are you 'good'? To turn aside and allow evil to flourish is to collaborate with it. You ask for mercy. You claim you have done nothing. That 'nothing' is why you deserve no mercy." - Lorian Karthfaerr, drow paladin of Avandra Robin Laws says I'm a Storyteller:
Show
You're more inclined toward the role playing side of the equation and less interested in numbers or experience points. You're quick to compromise if you can help move the story forward, and get bored when the game slows down for a long planning session. You want to play out a story that moves like it's orchestrated by a skilled novelist or film director. Storyteller 92% Tactician 83% Method Actor 75% Butt-Kicker 67% Power Gamer 67% Specialist 58% Casual Gamer 8%

The same text appears in every book that contains tome implements, AFAICT. 



Under what game element or paragraph is this being stated ? I don't have the book, i don't question what is said and the statement is assuredly rule-oriented, but is it contained in a rule texte ? A Fluff text ? A class ot Implement Tome entry ?  That's what i want to know. 

The Mordenkainen's Magnificent Emporium text for exemple leaves really perplex as statement introducing proficiency to classes by way of sentence presented under a Magic Tome introduction description. 

MME 51 Tome: Wizard are automatically proficient with using tomes as implements.



Are you really claiming that wizards could not legally use tomes during that period, despite the rules text accompanying the tomes themselves that clearly stated that they could?


No since tome implement proficiency was introduced with the Arcane Power as a new Implement under a Wizard write up it took effect immediatly. 

AP 98 New Implement: The Player’s handbook describes how wizards can make use of orbs, staffs, and wands to help channel and direct their arcane power. Now wizards can add the tome to their available implements and choose it for their Arcane Impolement Mastery class feature.

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

You could just as easily argue that it doesn't appear in the class writeup because every mention of tome specifically mentions Wizards are proficient with Tomes, while you'll never see "Wizards automatically have proficiency with using wands as implements" in the description of wand implements. Only the arcanist predated the "wizards can use tomes" rule, so it's fairly logical that they'd be the only ones to have it errata'd into their class writeup.

The text is right after the heading "Implements", it's not a sidebar, it's not fluff, it's not descriptive, it's a rule plain and simple.
"Invokers are probably better round after round but Wizard dailies are devastating. Actually, devastating is too light a word. Wizard daily powers are soul crushing, encounter ending, havoc causing pieces of awesome." -AirPower25 Sear the Flesh, Purify the Soul; Harden the Heart, and Improve the Mind; Born of Blood, but Forged by Fire; The MECH warrior reaches perfection.
So its another affirmation contained in a Implement entry description as with MME  ? 

If its the case, the DDi Compendium should be updated to reflect thos.


That would make a good candidate for a Rule-of-Three question.


EDIT  Sent one to Customer Service  Ticket [#120405-000042]

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter


We're not really dealing with a competent group of people who actually care, here. I could bring this up directly with a developer and nothing would ever be done about it.



I have to disagree with you on this point. The fact that there's been so much effort put into revising 4e over the last few years shows that WotC does care about the rules of the game. For example, the latest errata included a nerfing of KAM which the community had been asking for to remove an obviously overpowered option. Yes, the KAM nerf was long overdue, but they did change it.

I'm hopeful that this issue with tomes can be resolved or at least clarified one way or the other. We just need to bring it to there attention in sufficient numbers to ensure that it gets to the right people.
And if it is clarified and resolved, to have the DDi Compendium updated to reflect this ammendement to all Wizards Implement Proficiency. Wink

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

this is what they get for changing names halfway thru the edition
I have to disagree with you on this point. The fact that there's been so much effort put into revising 4e over the last few years shows that WotC does care about the rules of the game. For example, the latest errata included a nerfing of KAM which the community had been asking for to remove an obviously overpowered option. Yes, the KAM nerf was long overdue, but they did change it.

I'm hopeful that this issue with tomes can be resolved or at least clarified one way or the other. We just need to bring it to there attention in sufficient numbers to ensure that it gets to the right people.

People have been asking for KAM to be changed for going on two years for being overpowered. It wasn't some minor amount of being overdue. Iterative damage from forced movement? Four years (and they changed it in the way the community at large specifically told them not to). I could go on like this. They. Just. Do. Not. Care.

People have been asking for KAM to be changed for going on two years for being overpowered. It wasn't some minor amount of being overdue. Iterative damage from forced movement? Four years (and they changed it in the way the community at large specifically told them not to). I could go on like this. They. Just. Do. Not. Care.


This remindes me wich month's erata updat had the changes to paladins divine challenge to change it from what was in the book to how it was intended to work?
The sea looks at the stabillity of the mountian and sighs. The mountian watches the freedom of the sea and cries.
Under what game element or paragraph is this being stated ? I don't have the book, i don't question what is said and the statement is assuredly rule-oriented, but is it contained in a rule texte ? A Fluff text ? A class ot Implement Tome entry ?  That's what i want to know...."window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true">


Here it is in context:
"There's an old saying that all it takes for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing. I've always had a problem with that. If you do nothing to oppose evil, then how are you 'good'? To turn aside and allow evil to flourish is to collaborate with it. You ask for mercy. You claim you have done nothing. That 'nothing' is why you deserve no mercy." - Lorian Karthfaerr, drow paladin of Avandra Robin Laws says I'm a Storyteller:
Show
You're more inclined toward the role playing side of the equation and less interested in numbers or experience points. You're quick to compromise if you can help move the story forward, and get bored when the game slows down for a long planning session. You want to play out a story that moves like it's orchestrated by a skilled novelist or film director. Storyteller 92% Tactician 83% Method Actor 75% Butt-Kicker 67% Power Gamer 67% Specialist 58% Casual Gamer 8%
Thanks Duskwaever. Really appreciate the effort. Scan with masking was brilant :P

See the fact this general affirmation about Wizards automatically having proficiency with tomes appears under a general Magic Implement entry is what makes me say it is not necessarly authoritative. It doesn't even state they get it, but have it, saying it as if to remind people all have it.

This book that published the Sha'ir, a Wizard subclass, which 46 pages later state that Wizards automatically having proficiency with tomes, wasn't even given profificncy in tomes in his class write ups, leads me to think it was a sentence tossed without proper consideration.

I am not supposed to discover my Bladesinger Implement Profiency in some Magic Items entries of books not discussing Bladesingers.  I am not supposed to discover my Sha'ir Implement Profiency in some Magic Items entries later in the book discussing Sha'ir neither. 

Hence why i question the validity of this affirmation rule-wise.   If their intent is to squeeze a new Proficiency into already published Classes, they way its done in MME and HoTEC is pretty poorly handled IMO as its questionable both RAW and RAI.

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

Does anyone with Arcane Power know if that same text "Wizards automatically have proficiency with using tomes as implements" is used in that book at the start of the tomes section?

 My impression is that they have just copy+pasted the same Tome intro text from every book since Arcane Power without even considering the addition of the subclasses or perhaps without even noticing that text is there.  The developers probably just create the new implements and then some book editor just grabs the old intro text and copies it forward because the developers didn't give notes explicitly changing it.
1st paragraph in the New Implements section (Arcane Power, p98)  "The Player's Handbook describes how wizards can make use of orbs, staffs, and wands to help channel and direct their arcane power.  Now wizards can add the tome to their available implements and choose it for their Arcane Implement Mastery class feature."

there isn't anything at the beginning of the Tome item section, except to note that if you can't use tomes as implements, you don't get any benefit from them, their properties, or their powers.



edited to add that I just noticed Plague had already quoted the AP text, so I will just point out that Arcane Initiate was changed in the updates:

Arcane Initiate
{PHB}Page 208: Replace the third paragraph of the Benefit
section with “In addition, you can use wizard implements.” The former text did not take into account new
implements, such as the tome, which was introduced in Arcane Power


which either clarifies or further obfuscates the situation;)

INSIDE SCOOP, GAMERS: In the new version of D&D, it will no longer be "Edition Wars." It will be "Edition Lair Assault." - dungeonbastard

I've just found something that makes me think I've been wrong about the RAI. The feat Witchcraft Initiate, which multiclasses you into (the witch subclass of) wizard does not allow you to use "wizard implements" like Arcane Initiate, but specifies only "orb, staff and wand implements", which implies that those are the only implements witches use natively.

I still think strict RAW is that all wizards can use tomes, though.
"There's an old saying that all it takes for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing. I've always had a problem with that. If you do nothing to oppose evil, then how are you 'good'? To turn aside and allow evil to flourish is to collaborate with it. You ask for mercy. You claim you have done nothing. That 'nothing' is why you deserve no mercy." - Lorian Karthfaerr, drow paladin of Avandra Robin Laws says I'm a Storyteller:
Show
You're more inclined toward the role playing side of the equation and less interested in numbers or experience points. You're quick to compromise if you can help move the story forward, and get bored when the game slows down for a long planning session. You want to play out a story that moves like it's orchestrated by a skilled novelist or film director. Storyteller 92% Tactician 83% Method Actor 75% Butt-Kicker 67% Power Gamer 67% Specialist 58% Casual Gamer 8%
Customer Services answered for my Rule-Of-Three submission with the following answer below.

I wish it makes it eventually to the famous column but no guarantees. Or that a FAQ or Rule Update come clarify this confusion in one way or another. 

[sblock]

Hi Yan,
Your question is near and dear to my heart. I too would like to know an official answer. As for what I can tell you, look at the sub-classes of Wizard to see what implements each sub-class is proficient in and go with that for now. I'm hopeful that official errata may clarify all this in the future.

 Wizards of the Coast greatly values the feedback provided by our customers and we here at Game Support interact with a wide variety of departments.  I have passed this concern along to the D&D R&D group and while you may not receive a direct reply from them they will see your suggestion.  

Thank you for taking the time to let us know your thoughts, and if you have any other questions or concerns please let me know!  

Dan
Online Response Crew
Wizards of the Coast

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

I suppose we'll just have to wait and see. Thanks for taking the time to submit the question, Plague.
"There's an old saying that all it takes for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing. I've always had a problem with that. If you do nothing to oppose evil, then how are you 'good'? To turn aside and allow evil to flourish is to collaborate with it. You ask for mercy. You claim you have done nothing. That 'nothing' is why you deserve no mercy." - Lorian Karthfaerr, drow paladin of Avandra Robin Laws says I'm a Storyteller:
Show
You're more inclined toward the role playing side of the equation and less interested in numbers or experience points. You're quick to compromise if you can help move the story forward, and get bored when the game slows down for a long planning session. You want to play out a story that moves like it's orchestrated by a skilled novelist or film director. Storyteller 92% Tactician 83% Method Actor 75% Butt-Kicker 67% Power Gamer 67% Specialist 58% Casual Gamer 8%
Isn't there a rule that says that specific rules beat general rules?  Wouldn't a rule that says "all wizards can use tomes" be a general rule, while class write-ups are examples of specific wizard rules, thus beating the general rule?
Specific rules beat general rules when they conflict.  There's no conflict here.

One rule says this subclass of wizard can use *implements*.  Another say ALL wizards can use Tomes.  No conflict, the latter adds to, rather than replacing, the former.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
In players handbook it says holy symbols can be worn instead of held in the hand under a general magic implement entry, is this authorative?
 
The sea looks at the stabillity of the mountian and sighs. The mountian watches the freedom of the sea and cries.
Yes, it is.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
Here's a related question.  Can all wizards select from all published cantrips?  Iirc, Mage got access to a 'suggestion' cantrip that I haven't seen with wizard (arcanist).  HoS published additional cantrips as well.  Can an arcanist pick suggestion?
As of the update that made them Arcanists, yes they can. 
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.