In one of the recent L&L articles it was implied that the Wizard might become the “Magic User” and that the player, or DM, would select the casting mechanic used. Well I would like to take this idea and run with it. Laying out what I would like to see from this idea. I want to state up front that this is just a rough idea, and would like critiques and constructive criticism.
First we would need to establish what casting mechanics we would like to see. I think there are three that would cover what most people would like to see, AEUD, Vancian, and spell points. There’s also the semi-spontaneous casting of the new Cleric, which I really like, but we’ll just pretend that is restricted to Clerics, or divine in general. Regardless these all need to use the same spell lists, it would be too difficult to manage a different spell list for each type of casting.
Spell points and Vancian casting should be pretty simple to balance, but trying to balance AEUD is a little more difficult. Encounter and Utility spells are where the issues arise. Utilities could be thrown out, because of the ritual mechanic. So that leaves encounter spells. An easy way to handle them would be to allow a PC using AEUD casting to select encounter spells X number of levels less than their highest level daily, this creates some issues at low levels when you don’t have a lot of different level spells though.
Now comes my favorite part of this idea. Class features would take the form of the characters power source. So the player decides where his magic comes from and is not restricted to a specific casting mechanic because of that choice. The top three I can think of would be Academic, Pact, and Bloodlines. So you could, if you wanted to, create a vancian based caster that gets his spells from a pact with a demon, or the wizard who has studied his whole life, but cast using the AEUD mechanic. The hard part here would be creating the power source features so they function with all of the different casting mechanics.
I would love to get some feedback and more ideas for this concept. So feel free to chime in.