4e Rituals in 5e

One thing I like about 4e are the rituals and the ability for anyone with the feat to be able to cast rituals. If 5e leaves out some of this function, will u add it into ur 5e game?
I like rituals a lot as a concept (geater works of magic that you spend time and effort on out of combat).

So if there are no rituals at all in 5e I will definitely houserule some for various purposes.

But from this playtest it seems there will be rituals, although merely the same spell cast with components (gp) instead of spell slots..   that's a boring way to handle rituals in my mind.

Personally I feel only magic users should be able to perform most rituals..  in the world I am currently DMing, you need an inborn gift for magic, so if you don't have it, you can't use any magic. And this gift for magic is a quite important world history/plot component...

But other worlds could be very different in that respect so there it might work with just a feat or skills or something.
Rituals working like they did in 4e would require a specialty that provides the option to learn ritual spells. That sounds like a fine addition to the core to me. I'd like to see that. The other feats would be ways to make using rituals more palatable.
I don't use emoticons, and I'm also pretty pleasant. So if I say something that's rude or insulting, it's probably a joke.
That said - I would like to see rituals key off of something else besides money as a limiting factor.


In 4e, I think the PCs should have been able to spend healing surges to power rituals.  In 5N I'd like to see hit ponts, hit dice, daily spell ability, being weakened for a long period of time (an hour or so), etc. as ways to power rituals - with money being 'the shortcut' for those who don't want to pay the price.


In other words - don't make them part of their own cash-based resource system;make them part of the character's daily resource management. 


(And in 4E magic item creation nd the like would have been an exception to this - but in 5N we dont' have to worry about that one, at least not in the core).       


Carl
Possibly giving u disadvantage or something for a period of time because of drain
I could definitely see a Ritual Caster theme, which lets people cast rituals who are not otherwise spellcasters.  But I agree with CarlT that there needs to be a cost other than mere gp.  I'm not crazy about using hp as the limitation either.  Maybe there should just be a limited number of rituals you may cast a day.  Say spell levels equal to double your character level.  That would actually also give spellcasters extra ritual casting slots if they take the Speciality.
That said - I would like to see rituals key off of something else besides money as a limiting factor.

In 4e, I think the PCs should have been able to spend healing surges to power rituals.



I simply changed the price of all rituals players found to healing surges instead in our current 4e campaign....

Although I mess around with those rituals quite a bit.. the players won't find the standard versions in my campaign, and the source matters..  A player copied a ritual from a drow wizards spellbook and it said in cost that you were to sacrifice 3 slaves. The player asked how many healing surges that was and I said, 'try and see =P'

There is so much fun you can do with rituals.
I use them for all kinds of things, like the key to a particular door was a ritual.. =)

Eye of newt or whatnot is a classic magic trope.  Pre-4e used spell components (albeit very pun related) to represent this trope.  4e used ritual components (albeit abstracted as a gp cost).

Should 5e shy away from ritual components, what in the game represents eye of newt?
I could definitely see a Ritual Caster theme, which lets people cast rituals who are not otherwise spellcasters.

Heck, the warlock class feature already tells us that WotC is thinking about this as an option.

But I agree with CarlT that there needs to be a cost other than mere gp.  I'm not crazy about using hp as the limitation either.  Maybe there should just be a limited number of rituals you may cast a day.  Say spell levels equal to double your character level.  That would actually also give spellcasters extra ritual casting slots if they take the Speciality.

Color me skeptical of this idea.  You're basically just handing casters extra spell slots.  Seems kind of like it's in "What's the point?" territory.

I think gp is a good resource to use.  The "permanentness" of the loss makes you feel like you're making a real investment.  One thing I would like to see - and this would have effects far beyond just the ritual system - is a flattening of the expected income curve from low to high levels, so the costs of low-level rituals and other stuff never become trivial.

Is anyone going to try to advocate for xp costs, or can we all agree that that's a mechanic that should be left where it lies in 3e?
I'd like to just call rituals spells again be done with the distinction.  


No xp cost. I hated that. And extra book keeping. I also liked the idea in AD&D of cooperative spells. Most were priests spells but could work for other types.
That said - I would like to see rituals key off of something else besides money as a limiting factor.


In 4e, I think the PCs should have been able to spend healing surges to power rituals.  In 5N I'd like to see hit ponts, hit dice, daily spell ability, being weakened for a long period of time (an hour or so), etc. as ways to power rituals - with money being 'the shortcut' for those who don't want to pay the price.


In other words - don't make them part of their own cash-based resource system;make them part of the character's daily resource management. 


(And in 4E magic item creation nd the like would have been an exception to this - but in 5N we dont' have to worry about that one, at least not in the core).       


Carl


How about Hit Dice?
Sorta like Martial Practices ate Healing Surges, you can pay the blood price of magic rather than the monetary cost. Just an idea as an option. Big magics drawing on life force or fatiguing the caster are a well established fantasy trope...

Also, you had asked me in a different thread who wanted Rituals to only be for Casters.
We've got a couple of examples here it seems. ;) 
I have an answer for you, it may even be the truth.
I'll add my voice to those who want a different payment method for rituals. I like the HD idea.

Personally I find exp and/or gold payment ineffective or way too restricting depending on the campaign style.
Paying with exp would be bad, but imo u have to spend some gold for materials to perform ritual.
Maybe ritual requires GP and some kind of additional effect or u can perform it just for GP but if u invest more into it, like souls from necromancer or HD it gives extra effect or bonus on it, or just lasts longer. 
How about Hit Dice?
Sorta like Martial Practices ate Healing Surges, you can pay the blood price of magic rather than the monetary cost. Just an idea as an option. Big magics drawing on life force or fatiguing the caster are a well established fantasy trope...

I think it's important that the cost not be completely recouped with just a single night's bed rest, though.  So if there is an option to pay with hit points or hit dice, I'd want to see a rule that they come back more slowly than normal.  You know how in 4e you had to work off the death penalty by hitting milestones?  Maybe not that exactly, but something like that.

Also, you had asked me in a different thread who wanted Rituals to only be for Casters.
We've got a couple of examples here it seems. ;) 


I guess I'm sort of in the middle.  I definitely don't want to see any old fighter or rogue laying runes of mystic warding around the campsite.  But in 4e, they could invest in training to qualify to learn these things, and I think that's fine.  In DDN the prerequisite could be "Ability to cast spells" and non-mage-classes could still get in with the Arcane Dabbler or Initiate of the Faith feats.  Seems like a happy medium to me:  open, but not too open.  And it'd be one of those things that would probably be changed by the "magic dial" modules WotC keeps talking about.  In a high-magic campaign, everyone can cast rituals by default.  In a low-magic campaign, you have to have a pointy hat, end of story.
I'll add my voice to those who want a different payment method for rituals. I like the HD idea.

Personally I find exp and/or gold payment ineffective or way too restricting depending on the campaign style.



Any ritual which creates something that is itself ongoing needs to be limited by a cost that is well just as ongoing.

A ritual that creates a permanent thing, needs a permanent cost. Which is part of the paradigm of money/component based restriction is based on.  But also if a healing surge or hit die or whatever comes back in  1 day it cant create an effect that is beyond one day. And that is an absolute maximum because nothing quite works that cleanly.

The paradigm is a bit fluffy... as time is money and spending money is really just a stand in for spending time and time is the ultimate in permanent expenditure.
  Creative Character Build Collection and The Magic of King's and Heros  also Can Martial Characters Fly? 

Improvisation in 4e: Fave 4E Improvisations - also Wrecans Guides to improvisation beyond page 42
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Reflavoring the Fighter : The Wizard : The Swordmage - Creative Character Collection: Bloodwright (Darksun Character) 

At full hit points and still wounded to incapacitation? you are playing 1e.
By virtue of being a player your characters are the protagonists in a heroic fantasy game even at level one
"Wizards and Warriors need abilities with explicit effects for opposite reasons. With the wizard its because you need to create artificial limits on them, they have no natural ones and for the Warrior you need to grant permission to do awesome."

 

The way I do it, is not just give the price for performing a ritual, so a wizard wants to perform ''secret page'' on one of his books, so he needs some salt, a candle, a parchment with a magic circle and a ghost residue.
Now he can go to the shop or mage guild and buy those or he search for rumors about ghosts and extract ghastly residue from them, players usually  take 2nd option coz its then they are interested more in ritauls themself and how will they be able to extract such substance.
I always make up some kind of items for the ritual and give them price's so they would match approx price of GP in the book, and its up to them will they buy or search for them. 
I like the frame work for rituals. Not sure how 4e does them as I never played that edition but the flexibility provided in 5th is great. It provides great role playing and mini quest options.
I could definitely see a Ritual Caster theme, which lets people cast rituals who are not otherwise spellcasters.  But I agree with CarlT that there needs to be a cost other than mere gp.  I'm not crazy about using hp as the limitation either.  Maybe there should just be a limited number of rituals you may cast a day.  Say spell levels equal to double your character level.  That would actually also give spellcasters extra ritual casting slots if they take the Speciality.


I love the idea of rituals, both as a way to cast spells spontaneously (andunprepared) but also for that cool narrativelemtent anyone being able to read the ritual book or some "spells" being only rituals and not castable in combat. 

I think the problem is trying to think of one rule for all rituals. Some should certainly cost money, varying from insignificant to costly. Some should br tiring, consuming hit dice. Some might require a blood sacrafice of hit points. And some should just take time. 

Once you embrace variable costs imagine what you could do. Imagine a ritual that consumed a year off your life, reducing your max age by that amount. Imagine one that consumed some beauty. How about a finger? The memory of your first love. The life of a virgin.

Or multiple options.
Imagine if opening a portal to the abyss required a dozem virgin sacrifices OR ritual components costing an amount typical only to high level characters OR a 9th level spell slot. So the rules support the level 3 big bad opening a door to hell, or a level 13 group saving to open a door, or a bored group of level 18s opening a portal with the wave of a hand.

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I'll add my voice to those who want a different payment method for rituals. I like the HD idea.

Personally I find exp and/or gold payment ineffective or way too restricting depending on the campaign style.



Any ritual which creates something that is itself ongoing needs to be limited by a cost that is well just as ongoing.

A ritual that creates a permanent thing, needs a permanent cost. Which is part of the paradigm of money/component based restriction is based on.  But also if a healing surge or hit die or whatever comes back in  1 day it cant create an effect that is beyond one day. And that is an absolute maximum because nothing quite works that cleanly.

The paradigm is a bit fluffy... as time is money and spending money is really just a stand in for spending time and time is the ultimate in permanent expenditure.



I pretty much agree with this.  My problem with the 4e rituals is it went cost wise for many/most rituals impractically expensive--just right--pocket change   Basically GP costs did not work in that economy.  Still it was one of my favorite parts of 4e.  But if you want to permanently put a castle in the sky 5 healing surges does not really cut it, maybe permanently lose a healing surge or HD or 5 HP but just use some healing surges is not enough, or GP and just accept once you reach a certain level some permanent rituals are pocket chnage.  
I'd love to see Rituals ala 4E in D&D:Next. Definitly agree with a Ritual Caster feat for anyone who wants to attempt to cast them. As for the payment aspect, I'm not partial to GP being the only factor in using/crafting rituals but there is some merit to it's use. Personally, I think the more components one has to do the ritual, the less costing it should be or the less drain on a character it should have. So, you grab more components and the requirements go down significantly.

Also, as HD is an extreamly expensive resource in D&D:Next, I don't think spending them willy nilly on Rituals is the best way to go. Instead of spending a number of HD, why not reduce the die of HD. So a Fighter who has 3d10 Hit Die and the Ritual Caster feat wants to scry the evil Gnoll Chieftan using a scroll he studied for X-amount of hours/days. He doesn't have a quartz crystal, a bowl inlaid with silver runes, or water purified by a Treant so casting such a powerful dweomer will cost him his HD to perform. Until the next long rest, his HD is reduced by 3 (from d10 to d4). Now, if he had a quartz crystal, it might have only dropped 2 (to d6) or if he had a bowl with silver glyphs AND some purified water, it'd only drop 1 (from d10 to d8). That way his daily healing reserve isn't wasted horribly as he still has 3 HD, it's just reduced to d4's instead of d10's.

Other classes, those that can automatically cast ritual spells (Cleric, Wizard, Warlock, etc) might be able to draw on some other resource OR substitue spells or just lean them normally and prepare them like they do now.
How about Hit Dice?
Sorta like Martial Practices ate Healing Surges, you can pay the blood price of magic rather than the monetary cost. Just an idea as an option. Big magics drawing on life force or fatiguing the caster are a well established fantasy trope...

I think it's important that the cost not be completely recouped with just a single night's bed rest, though.  So if there is an option to pay with hit points or hit dice, I'd want to see a rule that they come back more slowly than normal.  You know how in 4e you had to work off the death penalty by hitting milestones?  Maybe not that exactly, but something like that.



Why?

Sure - in the special case where they are making something permanent - the cost should be permenent.

But most rituals are just spells - you cast them and they are done.  They affect what is happening in the game at that time. And thus they should not require a permanent resource any more than casting any other spell or swinging a sword.'

In fact that is exactly what they should not cost.  And that is why people didn't use them - because they cost a permanent resource (gold) rather than a transient resource.

The need to be worked into the daily resource managment like any other ability.

With - again - the obvious exception of anything which creates a permanent effect.'

Carl
erdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:12px; margin:8px">Two quick examples of how what I just proposed might work well for the game. 

First, Keep on the Shadowfell, which like many adventures features a low level flunkie trying to do something the rules prohibit. How is he opening a portal to the Shadowfell and how exactly does he plan on summoing Orcus? He's like 15 levels too low. The DM either needs to get super specific ("oh, the summon-Orcus-through-this-portal ritual is only L5" or pull the unsatisfying "monsters work with different rules" which is unsatisfying narrativey because in-world there's no difference. 
If there was a variable cost independant of level he could cast the spell, and do so in a way that enriches the story. 

The other example is Raise Dead. An ever tricky spell as there should be a high cost a low levels and a low cost at high levels, yet the cost is either static (3e) or changes for no in-world reason (4e, with varyng costs that are either prohibitively expensive or negligible based on 3-6 levels). 
In a low level game there's always the awkwardness of justifying this mid level caster NPC to raise a fallen party member. The convenient nearby cleric or temple. 
What if raise dead had a flavorful cost a DM could regulate but was usable at low levels, and cast the spell with a penalty on the ressurected. Or it could be cast as a mid-level spell with a reduced but still present penalty, and finally cast as a hish level spell will no real cost or penalty.
What if the spell required a life in exchange, right in the spell description? Or if days neeed to be saraficed - donated - by the participants to restore a fallen ally. The enticing party giving up a year of their life to bring a friend back for a single year (plus ressurection sickness).

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The compilation of my Worldbuilding blog series is now available: 

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Personally I feel only magic users should be able to perform most rituals..  in the world I am currently DMing, you need an inborn gift for magic, so if you don't have it, you can't use any magic. And this gift for magic is a quite important world history/plot component...



I can't disagree with this strongly enough.  Rituals, historically, have been the domain of priests and shamans.  If you are going for a low magic world, then I could see limiting rituals.  But even then, it would only be clerical/druidic types who do them, not magicians or sorcerers.  Sorcerers, in such a world, would simply be cleric/druids of an evil or benign entity, and as such, would still be doing the ritual on behalf of the entity.  Magic flows form the universe, and as such, can be directly tapped without rituals.  Divine power flows from the Gods themselves, and usually require some form of ritual or prayer to activate.  That's the difference between Mages and Clerics.  The magic comes from two different sources.  One is science, the other is faith.
My game world requires a gift...heros dont all duscover or awaken ir...but if you are a pc you can...just as you can multiclass
  Creative Character Build Collection and The Magic of King's and Heros  also Can Martial Characters Fly? 

Improvisation in 4e: Fave 4E Improvisations - also Wrecans Guides to improvisation beyond page 42
The Non-combatant Adventurer (aka Princess build Warlord or LazyLord)
Reality is unrealistic - and even monkeys protest unfairness
Reflavoring the Fighter : The Wizard : The Swordmage - Creative Character Collection: Bloodwright (Darksun Character) 

At full hit points and still wounded to incapacitation? you are playing 1e.
By virtue of being a player your characters are the protagonists in a heroic fantasy game even at level one
"Wizards and Warriors need abilities with explicit effects for opposite reasons. With the wizard its because you need to create artificial limits on them, they have no natural ones and for the Warrior you need to grant permission to do awesome."

 

That said - I would like to see rituals key off of something else besides money as a limiting factor.


In 4e, I think the PCs should have been able to spend healing surges to power rituals.  In 5N I'd like to see hit ponts, hit dice, daily spell ability, being weakened for a long period of time (an hour or so), etc. as ways to power rituals - with money being 'the shortcut' for those who don't want to pay the price.


In other words - don't make them part of their own cash-based resource system;make them part of the character's daily resource management. 


(And in 4E magic item creation nd the like would have been an exception to this - but in 5N we dont' have to worry about that one, at least not in the core).       


Carl

While I can appreciate the reasons for this the problem is there really isn't another resource that works.

HS- doesn't work, MANY rituals are exactly the things you would cast during down time or preparatory to an adventure. Unless you're actually in the middle of an adventure, or at least starting out that day on it the HS cost is no cost at all. Major categories of rituals thus cannot be cost this way.

APs- See above

Powers- See above

XP- This would be a cost that would always bite, but it is a very gamist sort of mechanism. I guess you could fluff rituals as magic so powerful that it actually sucks the luck and divine favor, and memories, right out of you, but it still feels highly gamist to me. I'm also not really convinced that it is a good option in a game sense. Certainly it feels more like the opposite, a character should GAIN XP for using rituals not lose it. However it MIGHT work.

That leaves us with GP. It is a permanent cost, so it always bites. The question then is what combats the penny-pinching psychology that some groups are afflicted with. Personally I think the culprit is treasure parcels.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
I could definitely see a Ritual Caster theme, which lets people cast rituals who are not otherwise spellcasters.

Heck, the warlock class feature already tells us that WotC is thinking about this as an option.

But I agree with CarlT that there needs to be a cost other than mere gp.  I'm not crazy about using hp as the limitation either.  Maybe there should just be a limited number of rituals you may cast a day.  Say spell levels equal to double your character level.  That would actually also give spellcasters extra ritual casting slots if they take the Speciality.

Color me skeptical of this idea.  You're basically just handing casters extra spell slots.  Seems kind of like it's in "What's the point?" territory.

I think gp is a good resource to use.  The "permanentness" of the loss makes you feel like you're making a real investment.  One thing I would like to see - and this would have effects far beyond just the ritual system - is a flattening of the expected income curve from low to high levels, so the costs of low-level rituals and other stuff never become trivial.

Is anyone going to try to advocate for xp costs, or can we all agree that that's a mechanic that should be left where it lies in 3e?

My solution to the cost would be to make it proportional to the effect. If you want to cast Knock to break a Wizard Lock you have to spend N gp per level of effectiveness. Basically it could be every N gp you spend gives you a +1. Against a weak lock you can spend N gp. Against one cast by a super powerful NPC it could be VERY expensive (and the casting time could increase as well I suppose). Of course you'd also add an Arcana check result, so you could try to get a powerful effect cheaply, but it would be a risk. IMHO this was the major flaw with 4e rituals was a lack of cost scaling (and in many cases they didn't even bother to have effect scaling or even relate the effectiveness to a check at all).

Another option would be making ritual magic risky. I'm not a HUGE fan of disadvantages or backfire effects, they don't tend to make very good balancing factors, but they can work in the case of plot type elements. For instance perhaps you could get a bonus to your check by accepting some sort of negative backlash. That would allow for a natural 'fail forward' type effect where if you MUST succeed to go on you may, but only at a cost. This would certainly make ritual magic more interesting and thematic, and really differentiate it from ordinary 'fire and forget' casting.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
That said - I would like to see rituals key off of something else besides money as a limiting factor.


In 4e, I think the PCs should have been able to spend healing surges to power rituals.  In 5N I'd like to see hit ponts, hit dice, daily spell ability, being weakened for a long period of time (an hour or so), etc. as ways to power rituals - with money being 'the shortcut' for those who don't want to pay the price.


In other words - don't make them part of their own cash-based resource system;make them part of the character's daily resource management. 


(And in 4E magic item creation nd the like would have been an exception to this - but in 5N we dont' have to worry about that one, at least not in the core).       


Carl

While I can appreciate the reasons for this the problem is there really isn't another resource that works.

HS- doesn't work, MANY rituals are exactly the things you would cast during down time or preparatory to an adventure. Unless you're actually in the middle of an adventure, or at least starting out that day on it the HS cost is no cost at all. Major categories of rituals thus cannot be cost this way.

APs- See above

Powers- See above

XP- This would be a cost that would always bite, but it is a very gamist sort of mechanism. I guess you could fluff rituals as magic so powerful that it actually sucks the luck and divine favor, and memories, right out of you, but it still feels highly gamist to me. I'm also not really convinced that it is a good option in a game sense. Certainly it feels more like the opposite, a character should GAIN XP for using rituals not lose it. However it MIGHT work.

That leaves us with GP. It is a permanent cost, so it always bites. The question then is what combats the penny-pinching psychology that some groups are afflicted with. Personally I think the culprit is treasure parcels.



Actually - I would only a small fraction of them fit this category. 

But that doesn't really prove anything since it is easy (and logical) to make the cost different for every ritual.   If there are rituals that can be paid for on one day and benefitted from the next - you can make the ritual cost accordingly.  But the many of them are not in that category.

Carl
Sure - in the special case where they are making something permanent - the cost should be permenent.

But most rituals are just spells - you cast them and they are done.  They affect what is happening in the game at that time. And thus they should not require a permanent resource any more than casting any other spell or swinging a sword.'

In fact that is exactly what they should not cost.  And that is why people didn't use them - because they cost a permanent resource (gold) rather than a transient resource.

The need to be worked into the daily resource managment like any other ability.

With - again - the obvious exception of anything which creates a permanent effect.'

Carl


If you want an effect as a part of your daily resources, use one of your spell slots.  The whole point of rituals (especially in their current incarnation) is that they allow you to access their effects outside of your daily resources.  Just like how healing potions allow you to get some healing outside of your (or your party healer's) daily resources.  They're not just more resources, to make the wizard even more versatile on a day-to-day basis; they're something extra.

And I encourage you not to think about "temporary" versus "permanent" effects.  That boundary is blurry when you actually examine it.  Almost every spell, no matter what its listed duration, is going to have a permanent effect if deployed thoughtfully.  A fireball kills enemies permanently.  A cure moderate wounds keeps you from dying permanently.  A knock opens a door permanently.  A comprehend languages gives you information permanently.  PCs can achieve a limited number of these effects through their easily-renewable resources because PCs are pretty awesome.  It's not as though the nature of the effect obliges it to be renewable.
Personally I feel only magic users should be able to perform most rituals..  in the world I am currently DMing, you need an inborn gift for magic, so if you don't have it, you can't use any magic. And this gift for magic is a quite important world history/plot component...



I can't disagree with this strongly enough.  Rituals, historically, have been the domain of priests and shamans.  If you are going for a low magic world, then I could see limiting rituals.  But even then, it would only be clerical/druidic types who do them, not magicians or sorcerers.  Sorcerers, in such a world, would simply be cleric/druids of an evil or benign entity, and as such, would still be doing the ritual on behalf of the entity.  Magic flows form the universe, and as such, can be directly tapped without rituals.  Divine power flows from the Gods themselves, and usually require some form of ritual or prayer to activate.  That's the difference between Mages and Clerics.  The magic comes from two different sources.  One is science, the other is faith.



Um wut? Magic, historically, have only been about rituals. Also shamans are magicans more than they are priests, historically...

You do realise... that you are saying a lot of clear statements about fluff like 'magic flows from the universe'... with the intent to show me wrong about my own fictional world do you? That is quite doomed to fail. =P

I don't particularily like your fluff either... especially since you seem to think that divine magic somehow would be present as normal in a low magic world (that does not sound low magic to me).

My world however is not low magical at all. It is just as I stated, you need a gift for it. Either a gift of magic, or a a divine blessing, or some sort of innate power. A normal person cannot work magic at all.

Not that this has anything to do with the thread OP, but as you commented about how I do stuff in my world.. here we go:

In my world, magic was originally something of the fay and other magical creatures, these were all sorcerers. An extreme few of humans became sorcerers too far back, often due to not normal circumstances such as having fey blood.
Then some humans, in the far past discovered wizardry. They realised that while sorcery is about natural and innate magic, it is just too powerful for a mere human to control, but while the sorcerous gift burned strongly in a few individuals, there were a much larger number of people with a hidden gift so weak that it would never manifest.
These weak gifts could be awakened to a very much weaker form of magic, but one that, just because of its weakness, could be controlled. They devised ways to harness their small sparks of magic to do great things and founded the wizard controlled nation of Arrilan. Sorceres, which could not learn to control their magic, was enslaved by placing a seal spell on them, mostly as children, forcing them to obey the caster.

Because of this, having the gift or not, and how strong it is, is quite important to what you can do and what you need to worry about depending on where you are in that world (and when.. we have been playing campaigns set in different epochs of the same world).

Clerics too need a gift of sorts. A new cleric or paladin is initiated by a ritual where one cleric gives a part of his divine spark to the new initiate. The leader of the ritual got his spark when he was initiated by some other cleric and so on.
By this they keep the divine spark alive across the generations since it was handed to them by the gods, or a beings they believe to be gods. Several lines of clerics thus exist, tracing their sparks back in different ways and belonging to orders of different faiths and beliefs about the gods. Just faith is not enough to use divine magic.


Well, I wasn't actually commenting on your game world.  I was commenting on rituals.  What you do in your own game world is your own business.  If magic is a gift in your world, okay.  But rituals are not, exactly, magic.  They fall more in line with making pacts with demons and fey (Warlocks), or calling down the power of some God or Demi-God (Clerics).  Mages use a scientific method of altering the universe.  I guess you could call a spell a ritual if you want to.  They involve both physical and mental actions simultaneous (for instance, fireball requires pulling out a ball of dung and throwing it).  But look up the rules on Sorcerers and you'll see that they, like Dragons, are naturals at magic.  They pull their power from the universe itself.  Its not a gift.  Its in their blood.  Just check the mitichlorian count. Tongue Out

Clerics too need a gift of sorts. A new cleric or paladin is initiated by a ritual where one cleric gives a part of his divine spark to the new initiate. The leader of the ritual got his spark when he was initiated by some other cleric and so on.
By this they keep the divine spark alive across the generations since it was handed to them by the gods, or a beings they believe to be gods. Several lines of clerics thus exist, tracing their sparks back in different ways and belonging to orders of different faiths and beliefs about the gods. Just faith is not enough to use divine magic.



Sounds like Apostolic Succession to me.
How about Hit Dice?
Sorta like Martial Practices ate Healing Surges, you can pay the blood price of magic rather than the monetary cost. Just an idea as an option. Big magics drawing on life force or fatiguing the caster are a well established fantasy trope...

I think it's important that the cost not be completely recouped with just a single night's bed rest, though.  So if there is an option to pay with hit points or hit dice, I'd want to see a rule that they come back more slowly than normal.  You know how in 4e you had to work off the death penalty by hitting milestones?  Maybe not that exactly, but something like that.



Why?

Sure - in the special case where they are making something permanent - the cost should be permenent.

But most rituals are just spells - you cast them and they are done.  They affect what is happening in the game at that time. And thus they should not require a permanent resource any more than casting any other spell or swinging a sword.'

In fact that is exactly what they should not cost.  And that is why people didn't use them - because they cost a permanent resource (gold) rather than a transient resource.

The need to be worked into the daily resource managment like any other ability.

With - again - the obvious exception of anything which creates a permanent effect.'

Carl

Many rituals affect the game state in material ways that benefit the PCs in an ongoing way. A divination ritual imparts information which the PCs then act on, the advantage thus gained is at least relevant for a period of time, and could be relevant permanently if it allows the characters to achieve something that would be impossible otherwise. The concept is perfectly valid. If I cast a divination on day 1 and then act on the information gained on day 2, then an HS cost that is recouped before day 2 is effectively no cost at all. I have just as many HS as if I hadn't cast it, and I've got the advantage of the information, so the cost was effectively nothing. In the case of many divination and similar type rituals this will be the NORMAL situation. Clearly a ritual that is being used entirely within the context of an adventure, or grants no real advantage outside of one, COULD have a cost in temporary resources.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
Personally I feel only magic users should be able to perform most rituals..  in the world I am currently DMing, you need an inborn gift for magic, so if you don't have it, you can't use any magic. And this gift for magic is a quite important world history/plot component...



I can't disagree with this strongly enough.  Rituals, historically, have been the domain of priests and shamans.  If you are going for a low magic world, then I could see limiting rituals.  But even then, it would only be clerical/druidic types who do them, not magicians or sorcerers.  Sorcerers, in such a world, would simply be cleric/druids of an evil or benign entity, and as such, would still be doing the ritual on behalf of the entity.  Magic flows form the universe, and as such, can be directly tapped without rituals.  Divine power flows from the Gods themselves, and usually require some form of ritual or prayer to activate.  That's the difference between Mages and Clerics.  The magic comes from two different sources.  One is science, the other is faith.

Not really, ritual magic was used by people like Siegfried, Vanamoinen, Odysseus, etc etc etc. Many oriental heroes were also able to do ritualistic magic of various types. It is rarely restricted to one type of people, though different types of characters may do different types of things.

What bugs me about the current 5e rituals is all they are is another way the wizard can be more powerful. In 4e it was cool, you could be the warrior hero that knows SOME magic. It probably would have been nice if the types of rituals (religious and arcane would have been split up though).
That is not dead which may eternal lie
The benefit of rituals in 4E was to distinguish out of combat uility, or game changing effects, versus keeping them in the realm of combat where they could easily determine the outcome of an encounter. I had hoped 5E rituals would be used to address some of the spells that tended to be abused like wish and move them outside the standard boundaries of the vancian system, but what was done instead was to further erode the boundaries of the vancian system to give wizards more power (not limited to spell slots), because GP limits never really worked; unless the DM is stingy. And in that world, where magic or money is hard to come by makes wizards even more powerfull at higher levels, because the martial classes can not compenstate with magic items.
That said - I would like to see rituals key off of something else besides money as a limiting factor.


In 4e, I think the PCs should have been able to spend healing surges to power rituals.

Thats exactly what I ended up doing, though I had a sort of "cash-out" option, where you could spend double the GP cost is ritual components (residiuum, holy incense, etc) and "quick-cast" the ritual.

Rituals in my mind were a mix between lab science and art.  You could take your time, feel out the magical leylines, get your internal energies in sync with the world, and "spend" your energy (Healing Surges).  Or you could spend the GP cost in components and cast the ritual, like a scientist mixing chemicals in a lab somewhere (the default way).  Or you could just throw a ton of magical **** in a pot, like an overzealous chef, and hope for the best (double GP quick-cast).

In 5N I'd like to see hit ponts, hit dice, daily spell ability, being weakened for a long period of time (an hour or so), etc. as ways to power rituals - with money being 'the shortcut' for those who don't want to pay the price.


In other words - don't make them part of their own cash-based resource system;make them part of the character's daily resource management. 


Carl

Great minds think alike, Carl.
Essentials zigged, when I wanted to continue zagging. Roll dice, not cars.
I was not commenting on what a ritual can or cannot do. I was merely pointing out that gp cost failed in my eyes just as much as exp cost.

Gp cost for rituals makes them prime antagonists for magic items.

What I experienced was a 3.x approach. Rituals/scrolls cost too few exp/gold and magic items dont come in play until higher levels so every caster had at least 10 or 20 in every adventure making the balance gap so much bigger.

And a 4e approach where magic items come in play from level one and both of my parties just opted for the dont use a ritual until absolutely necessary, because noone wanted to "lose" a magic item.

Not sure if thats the use you'd like for rituals but I found it disappointing.

5e so far has not given us any permanent ritual effects. They are just utility spells.

Making magic items optional though means we can easily have two extremes. Magic marts are non existant. GP doesnt mean much and a fighter has to make a very difficult desicion. Use rituals in every adventure and build a three spired castle at level 20? Or restrain himself and build the four spired castle he always dreamed of?

Magic items economy exists? Check 3.x and 4e, I think many people were disappointed in ritual usefulness in both editions.
But look up the rules on Sorcerers and you'll see that they, like Dragons, are naturals at magic.  They pull their power from the universe itself.  Its not a gift.  Its in their blood.  Just check the mitichlorian count.



Being born with such power might be called a 'gift' even though it is not a gift from something other than fate. It could also be called a spark, a taint or a curse.


Sounds like Apostolic Succession to me.



Yea. I wanted the clerics (and the world) further removed from the gods than in typical D&D. I want the different religions to be based on faith and myths, rather than knowledge. Also I wanted to open up for religius disputes and fractions inside a single faith, thats impossible with a direct connection to the gods.

I built the religions around the core D&D deites but I canged them around a bit and divided them on some pantheons. The most dominating culture in the current game world worships Pelor, with Heironeus (Heiron) and Hextor (Hector) as his two sons. All three are worshipped partly together, partly separate and different groups in society have different takes on their teachings.
Yea. I wanted the clerics (and the world) further removed from the gods than in typical D&D. I want the different religions to be based on faith and myths, rather than knowledge. Also I wanted to open up for religius disputes and fractions inside a single faith, thats impossible with a direct connection to the gods.

I built the religions around the core D&D deites but I canged them around a bit and divided them on some pantheons. The most dominating culture in the current game world worships Pelor, with Heironeus (Heiron) and Hextor (Hector) as his two sons. All three are worshipped partly together, partly separate and different groups in society have different takes on their teachings.



So do you also have a game mechanic for this divine spark?  I would be interested to see it, and how it progresses.  For instance, you get the spark emparted to you, but its not as strong as the spark from which it came.  It has to grow within you.  How do you as a DM divise a game mechanic for that?
That said - I would like to see rituals key off of something else besides money as a limiting factor.


In 4e, I think the PCs should have been able to spend healing surges to power rituals.

Thats exactly what I ended up doing, though I had a sort of "cash-out" option, where you could spend double the GP cost is ritual components (residiuum, holy incense, etc) and "quick-cast" the ritual.

Rituals in my mind were a mix between lab science and art.  You could take your time, feel out the magical leylines, get your internal energies in sync with the world, and "spend" your energy (Healing Surges).  Or you could spend the GP cost in components and cast the ritual, like a scientist mixing chemicals in a lab somewhere (the default way).  Or you could just throw a ton of magical **** in a pot, like an overzealous chef, and hope for the best (double GP quick-cast).

In 5N I'd like to see hit ponts, hit dice, daily spell ability, being weakened for a long period of time (an hour or so), etc. as ways to power rituals - with money being 'the shortcut' for those who don't want to pay the price.


In other words - don't make them part of their own cash-based resource system;make them part of the character's daily resource management. 


Carl

Great minds think alike, Carl.

But I can often bypass your cost system. What happens when I cast divination/scrying type rituals off time when an HS cost is meaningless?

You're fighting against the wrong thing. It isn't the ritual system and its GP costs that are the issue. It is the PARCEL system and its rigid expectation that only a specific amount of gold will exist in the whole career of the PC.

I'd also point out that the actual costs of most rituals are not so off base as people often insist. They are generally just cheap enough to be a better option than paying for some item that would let you do something similar (for situations where that's possible) and otherwise fairly comparable with other consumable resources.

The presentation of treasure as a strictly limited resource that you ALWAYS end up with a fixed amount of in the end regardless of what level of risk you take is the problem.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
How about rituals be about locating the rate material components needed to cast them.  I like material components.  I don't like a shop where everything is bought.  Forage checks to locate rare herbs, nature and tracking checks for other things.  Rare gems that must be of specific quality.
Yea. I wanted the clerics (and the world) further removed from the gods than in typical D&D. I want the different religions to be based on faith and myths, rather than knowledge. Also I wanted to open up for religius disputes and fractions inside a single faith, thats impossible with a direct connection to the gods.

I built the religions around the core D&D deites but I canged them around a bit and divided them on some pantheons. The most dominating culture in the current game world worships Pelor, with Heironeus (Heiron) and Hextor (Hector) as his two sons. All three are worshipped partly together, partly separate and different groups in society have different takes on their teachings.



So do you also have a game mechanic for this divine spark?  I would be interested to see it, and how it progresses.  For instance, you get the spark emparted to you, but its not as strong as the spark from which it came.  It has to grow within you.  How do you as a DM divise a game mechanic for that?



It has varied a bit during our games, mostly because we have also played in the same world with other RPG rules than D&D, and we have also played both D&D 3.x and 4e.

But in the context of D&D:

There is a ritual to confer the divine spark from one cleric to another (or a paladin). This ritual is much like any spell or ritual but it is surrounded by much ceremony and dogma, varying from cult to cult, some include trials you need to pass and such, others require you to be of noble birth etc. Some only teach is to clerics of certain ranks and stations. But in principle a cleric who knows the spell/ritual can cast it on anyone he/she wishes to. (It is a spell level 3 spell in 3.x and a level 6 ritual in 4e)

In 3.x the spell actually made the casting cleric to lose a level of cleric by losing XP, but we ruled that this XP was regained at double rate. The receiving initiate gained a cleric level or a paladin level, so basically.. one level was transferred from one to the other.

In 4e it was much harder to do in a good way, so we just said that the cleric granting the spark lost most of his divine power for a while until it recovered and roleplayed the rest.

Faith and proper conduct is really important to be allowed to get the divine spark in the first place, and also to keep it alive and nurtured as it grows. But once the spark is well rooted in a cleric, it does not disappear if the cleric breaks holy wows or converts to a different faith.

To deal with this there is another ritual, an excommunication ritual, that was cast to remove the spark from a cleric that had done wrong. This ritual just snuffs out the spark, without transferring it, and is thus not something that clerical orders would like to do (as they are afraid that all the sparks will get lost). It also requires that they get hold of the wayward cleric. Because of this, the orders are very careful with who they grant a spark.

In one of our campaigns, a paladin PC was excomunicated and deprived of his divine spark wrongfully due to intrigue, internal strife and powerplays within his church..
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