How many Wizards used Grease in their playtest?

This thread may not last very long, but I feel like I owe it to 'Greasy' Sal, my second 2E Wizard, to at least spark discussion about the other spells available besides boring old burning hands and sleep.

Just for some quick background on 'Greasy' Sal:

He was a grumpy old Human who wore boller hats and a handle bar mustache.  He prefered Leather Dusters to moldy old robes and his go to spell was 'grease'.  There wasn't any combat situation that Sal couldn't solve with the "...proper application of a little 'grease'!"  This may have been because Sal was a cook while putting himself through the Wizarding academy, or it could have been because the monsters burned better with a little bit of oil on 'em, but Sal always made sure he had a ready supply of butter and spell slots full of grease.

So now that you know about Sal, has anyone else playtested the other 1st Level spells?  For any of the classes?

I plan on making Sal 5.0 and swapping Sleep for Grease when I run my second playtest tonight. 
we did in our 2nd playtest.  It did slow down the approaching goblins
Also of note, they then dropped a flask of alchemist's fire on top of the grease.  This incinerated 3 goblins but then reduced the grease spell's duration.


the flames last a round but left the corridor ungreased (there would have been 5 more rounds left)  
It got cast under some kobolds but then immediately set on fire with burning hands from the other wizard (which killed the creatures anyway before factoring in burning grease or anything).

Grease is a great spell but it is definitely a right place right time spell when it’s good it’s really good but most of the time not so much.

I have got two questions:

Can that magic grease burn? (to be used in a fire trap)

Could that speell create infammable grease to go out fire?

"Say me what you're showing off for, and I'll say you what you lack!" (Spanish saying)

 

Book 13 Anaclet 23 Confucius said: "The Superior Man is in harmony but does not follow the crowd. The inferior man follows the crowd, but is not in harmony"

 

"In a country well governed, poverty is something to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed, wealth is something to be ashamed of." - Confucius 

I have got two questions:

Can that magic grease burn? (to be used in a fire trap)

Could that speell create infammable grease to go out fire?



The greasy material conjured by the Grease spell is clearly a magical effect, not real world grease, since it suddenly goes away at the end of one minute. The rules do not specify if it can burn to increase fire damage or be burned away to get rid of it. Without these effects being specified in the rules the DM is free to decide how the "grease" reacts to fire or anything else.
In his play test article today Mike Mearls stated "We want to make it easy for a DM to improvise and use the rules as guidelines. ...we hope to allow them [DMs] to really own their campaigns and take on the referee part of the DM's duties, rather than relying on the book to do so." So it is clearly the intention of this rule set to empower DM to make decisions on areas that aren't covered in the rules. Therefore the answer to your questions is, yes those things happen if (and only if) the DM wants them to happen.
I have got two questions:
Can that magic grease burn? (to be used in a fire trap)
Could that speell create infammable grease to go out fire?



[...] In his play test article today Mike Mearls stated "We want to make it easy for a DM to improvise and use the rules as guidelines. ...we hope to allow them [DMs] to really own their campaigns and take on the referee part of the DM's duties, rather than relying on the book to do so." So it is clearly the intention of this rule set to empower DM to make decisions on areas that aren't covered in the rules. Therefore the answer to your questions is, yes those things happen if (and only if) the DM wants them to happen.



This can be a slippery slope (pun semi-intended). I like and even champion not specifying every situation so that the GM has freedom to adjudicate... but for something like Grease, which has a very specific in-game effect, I'd prefer the book specify if it were flammable or non-flammable especially when it has a very direct impact on damage output by the PCs (given the Grease/Burning Hands combo). It definitely bears pre-game discussion with one's players to make sure everyone has the same expectations.
 
The d20 SRD doesn't specify, but IIRC from editions prior to 3.x, the Grease spell was NOT flammable... but I may be mis-remembering.


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Grease THEN burning hands ;)

i will continue saying this, the wizard is a utility caster, and burning hands (alone) is his LEAST useful spell
I've used grease to do everything from combat multiplying to fixing wagon wheels in past games.

Trying to make battlements for War? In 3.5 you could cast a permanent Grease spell in a pit and make it burn, literally, for ever.

In my second playtest, I suggested our Wizard, not played by me, use Grease instead of one of the other spells.  She chose to take it instead of burning hands, surprise, surprise. And then she spent the rest of the night making me, the DM, regret it.

She greased the floor so that the rats would slide into the pit, then greased the sides of  the pit after the rats fell in so they couldn't get out.  She greased floors and walls so that she could make low grade walls of fire, and she greased monsters armor so that we could make the monsters "flamey".

On the one hand, from a DM perspective, I was furiously infuriated at her ability to come up with creative uses for the spell that enhanced combat without "breaking" it and made my monsters look like fools.  On the other, as a one time Grease Champion [self given title - yep, I'm a nerd], I couldn't stop smiling when she'd start a sentence with "I cast grease on..." and listened to the rest of the players groan.

On a side note the Rogue, played by me, loved being able to get Advantage on a DEX check to escape the Ogre because I was sliding on a greased floor, that I knew about, while he was slipping, sliding, and falling on his butt.

I think the big difference is that I love seeing people use that spell, and I figure that if a Wizard, especially a 1st level one, chooses to include it among on of his precious spell slots, he should be able to use it in any sort of creative fashion that he can think of.  

I mean, after all, this guy somehow figured that he could go out into the world armed with nothing more than a handful of sand and some slightly melted butter and battle monsters for a living.  I think I'll always give that guy the benefit of the doubt.
For me, Grease has been a staple spell for every single wizard I've ever played in every iteration of D&D that allowed it.  Grease is not only exceptionally useful when played by a creative and resourceful player, but it's also absolutely hilarious to employ during a fight. I once 'greased' a section of steep hill in front of a make-shift barricade the party was defending. The gnolls who were charging us were bottle-necked by terrain and obstacles into charging straight at us and their first couple of charges resulted in them slipping and sliding their way back down the hill (and covering themselves with greasy residue).  They milled around at the bottom of the hill for a while, apparently thinking their way - slowly - through the problem.  They opted to throw spears and shoot arrows at the party for a while, until our fighter tied some oil-soaked cloth to an arrow, lit it on fire, and shot the closest Gnoll in the chest.  He went up like a firework, and his mad flailing around succeeded in lighting the rest of the gnolls on fire as well.  They lost their nerve, ran away, and never came back.  Our party successfully defended their location with a single spell and a single arrow.

The Moral of this story?  Grease.  Grease is your friend.
@ 2LSan and Edwin12

I hereby charge you to go to every "wizard is boring" or "wizard is UP" thread on these here forums, and spread your tales of hilarity and wizard / grease Ingenuity.
My play test group used it to great (and necessary) effect.

we were a group of five players - one of each of the 1st level classes (cleric of moradin) and a single 2nd level wizard.

Instead of going to the kobold and goblin section of the dungeon we went straight to the accolyte, adept, undead section (3rd level content).  We ran into masses of undead and in order to survive the 2nd level wizard would grease the floor, the 1st level wizard would then torch the masses of undead with burning hands, at the same time igniting the grease.  then the cleric and the fighter would stand at the edge of the greased floor and the cleric would turn undead so that they could not really get out of the fire.  the fighter and the rogue would then kill the undead that were not affected by the cleric's turning and then one by one the party attacked and killed the undead that were turned.

Even using that strategy we lost the cleric and a wizard in one combat (down not dead), and both wizards and the fighter in another.

 

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it restores my faith in this game to hear so many "battle stories" in the PLAY TEST. fantastic!

I have got two questions:
Can that magic grease burn? (to be used in a fire trap)
Could that speell create infammable grease to go out fire?



[...] In his play test article today Mike Mearls stated "We want to make it easy for a DM to improvise and use the rules as guidelines. ...we hope to allow them [DMs] to really own their campaigns and take on the referee part of the DM's duties, rather than relying on the book to do so." So it is clearly the intention of this rule set to empower DM to make decisions on areas that aren't covered in the rules. Therefore the answer to your questions is, yes those things happen if (and only if) the DM wants them to happen.



This can be a slippery slope (pun semi-intended). I like and even champion not specifying every situation so that the GM has freedom to adjudicate... but for something like Grease, which has a very specific in-game effect, I'd prefer the book specify if it were flammable or non-flammable especially when it has a very direct impact on damage output by the PCs (given the Grease/Burning Hands combo). It definitely bears pre-game discussion with one's players to make sure everyone has the same expectations.
 
The d20 SRD doesn't specify, but IIRC from editions prior to 3.x, the Grease spell was NOT flammable... but I may be mis-remembering.





Oh, I prefer that more things be spelled out to avoid abuse of the real intent of the rules. And I prefer that Grease not be a flamable material. My techno-babble justification is that it is a magical conjuration that has an effect, not a summoned real material that would be flamable.  Smile

The d20 SRD doesn't specify, but IIRC from editions prior to 3.x, the Grease spell was NOT flammable... but I may be mis-remembering.


My old 1st Edition PHB (the one with the orange spine) doesn't have Grease listed, and the listing in the 2nd Edition Spell Compendium doesn't specify.

I think you're remembering your old playgroup's standard house rule on the matter.
We did during a Playtest in Planescape this week... The Wizard used Grease to cover up an area occupied by bashers and the Cleric used Sunburst to burn them up!

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Well the spell description says "lasts 1 minute before it DRYS up..." so I can easily see it being Fla able. I would probably grant advantage to any fire attacks in that area which then uses up the grease.
Well the spell description says "lasts 1 minute before it DRYS up..." so I can easily see it being Fla able. I would probably grant advantage to any fire attacks in that area which then uses up the grease.



While I don't have an issue with that being your ruling that would most certainly NOT be my ruling.  I would see it more as similar to the slimey ectoplasm in ghostbusters or in the Harry Dresden books so it would dry up and disappear at the end of the spell but would NOT be flammable or flameretardant in any way.

And to me that IS a problem because the rules should be clear enough that most of the time such widely different rulings at different tables shouldn't happen unless one of the tables is using a houserule.  The rules shouldn't be a straightjacket but they should be clearer than this.

(I COULD see grease used to grease a wagonwheel or door hinges to give bonuses on stealth or other checks if someone could come up with a creative way to use the spell and THAT is what I mean by the rules not being a straightjacket)


Well the spell description says "lasts 1 minute before it DRYS up..." so I can easily see it being Fla able. I would probably grant advantage to any fire attacks in that area which then uses up the grease.



While I don't have an issue with that being your ruling that would most certainly NOT be my ruling.  I would see it more as similar to the slimey ectoplasm in ghostbusters or in the Harry Dresden books so it would dry up and disappear at the end of the spell but would NOT be flammable or flameretardant in any way.

And to me that IS a problem because the rules should be clear enough that most of the time such widely different rulings at different tables shouldn't happen unless one of the tables is using a houserule.  The rules shouldn't be a straightjacket but they should be clearer than this.

(I COULD see grease used to grease a wagonwheel or door hinges to give bonuses on stealth or other checks if someone could come up with a creative way to use the spell and THAT is what I mean by the rules not being a straightjacket)





I agree, I want the rules to be more specific. However, there are a number of places where WotC has stated that they want the rules to be guidelines and "not tie your hands creatively". This seems to be their way of making everyone happy. This rule set encourages customization more than any other. Which sounds nice, every DM can choose to do as they wish, but it makes it confusing for players who go to a different DM who has a very different set of house rules.

Grease does not do anything except what the spell description says it does.  It only forces Dexterity saving throws and allows Advantage when trying to escape bonds.  It does absolutely nothing else unless you can first extract permission from your DM.
I suppose the grease could be (by spellcaster´s decision)  flammable but only hurts a point of fire damage because it burns slowly, or it can fire-resistent and it can be used to extirnguish a fire (like a counter-spell or throwing sand) or -1 fire damage reduction (it can be higher with some special magic ingredient or feat).

The problem is that greas has got a great (and disagreeable) smell and some characters or monsters with good smell could try avoid it.  

"Say me what you're showing off for, and I'll say you what you lack!" (Spanish saying)

 

Book 13 Anaclet 23 Confucius said: "The Superior Man is in harmony but does not follow the crowd. The inferior man follows the crowd, but is not in harmony"

 

"In a country well governed, poverty is something to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed, wealth is something to be ashamed of." - Confucius