Author Topic: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe  (Read 20192 times)

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TC X0 Lt 0X

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Papyrus & Ink:
A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe

"Thats no wand, its a Metamagic Rod! And who says he's a Dwarf? Clearly a larger then average Gnome!"

Table of Contents
Post 1: Introduction and Disclaimer
Post 2: Scrolls 101 and Scrolls & You
Post 3: Races and Classes
Post 4: Feats
Post 5: Items
Post 6: Spells

Introduction

As a player I have always noticed that scrolls have always been considered a backup item, used for emergency situations where specific spells, otherwise rarely prepared, are necessary to progress or survive. In always bothered me that while many classes have Scribe Scroll as a bonus feat, it almost always goes unused except in a once in a great while, when it can be used instead to generate resources daily for minimum investment, especially at lower levels when for most spellcasters have few spells a day. And always, they took backseat to Wands and Potions at lower levels, and staffs at higher levels, some for more obvious reasons, others not so much.
With this guide I plan to show the player base how to utilize their Scribe Scroll feat and Scrolls to the fullest extent, as well as how to become a Master Spell Scribe, able to produce Scrolls that cast spells more efficiently than actual spellcasters with the same spell.

« Last Edit: October 22, 2011, 03:41:22 AM by TC X0 Lt 0X »
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2011, 11:45:40 AM »
Scrolls 101
Code: [Select]
Scrolls Wands
Spell Completion Item Spell Trigger Item
Can have spells of up to 9th level Can have spells of up to 4th level
Single use per spell on scroll 50 charges (uses) per wand
Can hold different kinds of spells Can hold one spell
DC 20 + Caster Level to activate with UMD DC 20 to activate with UMD
Potential for Scroll Mishaps No Mishaps
25 x level of spell x level of caster in GP 750 x level of spell x level of caster in GP (or 15 x level of spell x level per charge)
Bonus Feat for Multiple Classes at 1st level Requires Caster Level 5th
Provokes an Attack of Opportunity Does not provoke an Attack of Opportunity
Little support from Feats and Items Great support from Feats and Items
Code: [Select]
Potions/Oils Staffs
Spell Trigger Item
Can have spells of up to 3rd level Can have spells of up to 9th level
Single Use Item 50 charges (uses) per Staff
Can hold one spell Can hold multiple spells
Can be used by any character DC 20 to activate with UMD
No Mishaps No Mishaps
50 x level of spell x level of caster in GP 300 + 750 x level of highest level spell x level of caster + Other Potential costs in GP
Requires Caster Level 3rd Requires Caster Level 12th
Provokes an Attack of Opportunity Does not provoke an Attack of Opportunity
Can use Users Stats for DC
Little support from Feats and Items Little support from Feats and Items

Potions/Oils have an advantage in being able to be used by anyone, but have the lowest max spell level and cannot be used for offensive spells. It also costs more than other items per use. Generally Potions are for characters unable to use the other options available, and when you craft them, you are generally crafting them for other players, not yourself.
Staffs are by far the most powerful item of the bunch, essentially Wands+. It has essentially the same price as wands, can hold multiple spells by increasing the price, can use 9th level spells, and most importantly can have DCs higher than the Base DC of the spell. When it comes to no Save Spells, it is pretty evenly matched to scrolls, though potentially either cheaper or more expensive in use. It can use some support that Wands have also being a Spell Trigger item, but it falls short of some of the best ones. In the average users hands, Staves are superior, but Scrolls come out to be superior in the hands of a dedicated Spell Scribe, being the most cost efficient of any of the items when crafted by them.


Making Scrolls

"Spell Scribe hard at work on a Scroll."

When making scrolls there are three things you need. The Feat to make them (Scribe Scroll), the spell to be put on the scroll, and the costs.
It is entirely possible for multiple characters to work on an item and add the necessary requirements, and this is suggested, as it is a way to get spells not normally on your list onto a scroll. Even Artificers benefit from this, letting them skip the need to make a UMD check while crafting.
One character has to be designated the creator when crafting an item. Generally speaking you want to be the creator, as you will have be able to lower the cost requirements (and as far as I remember, the creator must have the feat and provide the XP).

For prepared casters, you must expend the spell being used for crafting for that day. This may come out as a disadvantage, but it is not much of one when you consider the following. On off days you will not need to worry about spells unless you are ambushed for instance. Also, while you may lose a spell for that day, you get the spell back and keep the spell for as long as you need to until you use it. If you are using some method of crafting while adventuring, if you had one day prior for crafting, you should have 1 scroll. The next day when you craft, you expend a spell, but have the scroll to fill in the gap. There is a decent chance you will never even use all our spells at mid levels, so the loss of a spell is  no big deal, and if you do get to that point, the scroll will cover the loss for the day. If not, you get to keep the scroll for the following day and get an extra scroll to add to your pool as well. On that day you will actually have more spells then usual. And there is always the possibility you will have an extra spell unused at the end of the day as well, and you can use that spell with a Quill of Scribing or similar to craft while you sleep. So generally speaking, it is almost always worth it to craft a scroll each day as a prepared caster.

For spontaneous casters, scrolls are not much of a hindrance to create but are also not as useful. You don't need to spend a daily spell to crate a scroll, so you can have a scroll made everyday with no drawback. But Spontaneous Caster always have access to all there known spells, and have plenty of spell slots to boot. for the spontaneous caster, crafting a scroll is all about having more spells of your highest level available. For instance, instead of starting everyday with four 4th level spells, with a Scribe Scroll you can have five 4th level spells a day. If you don't use that scroll, you will have six 4th level spells the next day. So when the day comes when you have exausted all your spells, you can potentially have an extra set of spells to almost just as powerful as your actual spells. So generally speaking, it is almost always worth it to craft a scroll each day as a spontaneous caster.



Scrolls & You

What scrolls are to you as a player is different based on your occupation in the party and your goals as a character.

Character with UMD (such as a Rogue or Factotum):
An extra tool to get a job done and to add versatility and power to your character.

Character with Scribe Scroll (Such as an Archivist, Artificer, or Wizard)
A means to produce extra resources or prepare a tool for out of combat or situational circumstances.
With investment into a Quill of Scribing, 1 to 6 extra prepared spells a day (depending on spell level) which you can keep until they are used, which cost a small amount of GP and an unnoticeable amount of XP.

Aspiring Spell Scribe (Character with one or more levels into Unbound Scroll)
A weapon and tool you can build with any situation in mind, and keep in hand until that situation presents itself, be it today, or 10 years from now. All for either cheap or free. Each day (or 4). Anything unused is saved for a later date, and there is no limit to the amount you can save.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2011, 02:56:36 AM by TC X0 Lt 0X »
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2011, 11:45:54 AM »
Races

"... Racism."HERE which allows other races to have Dragonmarks not normally available to them (look at side bar 'Reincarnation in Eberron'). With this it is possible to be, for instance, a Human Unbound Scroll. If you manage to convince your DM to let you be Reincarnated, then I suggest going with the preferred race for your class. Not all DMs will let you use this obscure options though, so be ready to get all Gnomey.

Rock Gnomes {SRD}
Standard Gnome, and nothing to amazing. For some reason you can talk to animals that are burrowing mammals 1/day, but with a scroll you can talk to any animal. Weird regardless.

Forest Gnomes {SRD}

Similar to Rock Gnomes overall, but are far stealthier. Instead of being able to talk with burrowing mammals once a day they have Pass without Trace at will on themselves, making them virtually untrackable. They also have a +4 to Hide (or a +8 in forests) so your average Forest Gnome is better at hiding then most Human Rogues, once you account their Size. Oh, and they hate reptiles. Get a Lizard as a Familiar!


Bigger, badder Gnomes whom live in the Underdark. They have some strong bonuses to losts of their defenses and come with the usual Gnome fair of Racial Abilities, but their racial ability modifiers are really bad, with a -4 Charisma being the worst, making it extremely difficult to use Scrolls as Artificers. And they have a LA +3 on top of it all. Unless you are playing in a game where You get levels to LA or are actually forced to play a Svirfneblin, skip this and NEVER look back.

Aquatic Gnomes {SRD}Arctic Gnomes {SRD}
Rock Gnomes, but suck at Alchemy and are better at seeing through lies. They also have Fortitude bonuses against cold weather and such. Okay if you are stuck in the snow.

Desert Gnomes {SRD}
As Rock Gnomes but have social skills instead of Alchemy and Listen, and Fortitude bonuses against Hot Weather. If you are going for a more social character, this is superior to the standard.

Jungle Gnomes {SRD}Air Gnomes {SRD}
Instead of hating Kobolds, Goblins and Giants, you hate the Earth Subtype. Slightly more broader I suppose, but you also take a -2 penalty to Saving Throws against them as well so it is not all good. Instead of a +2 to Con, you have a +2 to Dex, which means you are not as hardy but harder to hit. But the best racial ability is being Breathless, making you immune to suffocation and effects that require you to breath. Overall very worth it.

Arcane Gnomes {D#291}River Gnomes {D#291}Ice Gnomes {FB}
Lose Ghost Sound 1/day and the ability to speak with burrowing mammals once per day and be able to use Ray of Frost 1/day and Speak with Artic Mammals 1/day. No bonuses against cold environments as far as I see as well. (-_-) Ghost Sound is actually useful and I can use a Crossbow to do better damage then a Ray of Frost. Also, if my Logic is correct many Artic Mammals (not all, but many) burrow anyways right? What am I saying, we can make a scroll to talk with any animal. Skip this really hard.

Whisper Gnome {RoS}Chaos Gnomes {RoS}
The usual for Gnomes and then some. Have +2 to Dex and Cha in addition to the usual (which helps with UMD), a slightly different Spell-Likes list, a +1 bonus to Caster Level with spells with the Chaos descriptor, as well as Immunity to Confusion Effects (probably because these poor souls are already confused). And most importantly, the ability to Reroll a dice roll 1/day. With that Artificers have a real easy time with this race for crafting and using UMD. There is one thing though. LA+1. This makes it less than optimal. But if you are playing in a game where LA buyoff is allowed, this is probably one of your best choices.

Tinker Gnomes {DLCS}
A little different from the Standard Gnome, but has its own merits. These Gnome do not hate anyone, so no racial bonuses against Kobolds, Goblins or Giants. No Con bonus, but a +2 to Dex and Int to a -2 Str and Wis. Bonuses to either all Craft, Profession, or Knowledge checks, (chosen when making your character), and a bonus to Will Saves. It is actually great overall, getting rid of the situational and easily emulated stuff for decent bonuses. I hate Krynn and Dragonlance with a burning passion, but I would play one of these over a Rock Gnome if I had the choice.

Mad Gnome {DLCS}Classes

"Wizard in the process of casting Fireburst from a scroll."

Base Classes
These classes are the preferred and best users of Scrolls, and if you want to at least be making effective scrolls everyday, these are for you.

ArtificerWizard
The iconic Spellcaster. Wizard gets Scribe Scroll as a bonus feat 1st level, so right out the gates is able to make scrolls. It also has a massive spell list full of the best spells in the game. Gathering all the spells will be tough for one, of course, but once you have a decent library of scrolls available to you they will become a great help.

Cleric w/ Rune DomainArchivistWarlockBinder
With access to Astaroth you can gain access to any crafting Feat. There are two problems with the Binder overall though. A) He still needs access to a spell he needs for crafting, and will need to borrow a party wizard or cleric or find a willing NPC to help him with crafting, and B) He does not have access to UMD, and the one bind normally used with Astaroth can only let the Binder use Spell Trigger items, like wands, not Spell Completion Items like a scroll. If you desire you can probably take Leadership to get access to spells with a cohort, but then you might as well make your Cohort an Artificer at that point. This is doable with Anima Mage and a Arcane Spellcasting class, which will help get access to Unbound Scroll.

Prestige Classes
Quote
Unbound ScrollEntry Requirements
Skills: Profession (Scribe) 4 ranks.       
Relatively valueless skill, but cost only a few ranks which you will most likely have available anyway. You could also use it to get a few extra gold a week at lower levels during downtime, sense you will be penny pinching for scrolls until later in your career.
Feats: Least Dragonmark (Mark of Scribing-Arcane Mark), Scribe Scroll.
One is essential for the profession and easy to acquire, and the other while useless at lower levels fuels are class features.
Spellcasting: Ability to prepare 3rd-Level Arcane Spells or Imbue 3rd-Level Infusions.       
In other words, you need to be 5th level. Do to some of the specific wording, Spontaneous Casters are a no go unless you take the feats necessary to allow them to.
Special: Must have performed a task specified by the Viceroy of the Ninth College   
A Flavor/RP requirement that can be met in character background, or ignored entirely in non Eberron Games if your DM is not a total rules Nazi.

Class Features
Spellcasting
You continue progressing your spellcasting ability each level except 3rd. The fact you lose a caster level means slow your progression to be able to create higher level scrolls, but this really does not bother the Artificer at all, and the Wizard can live with it. Better than half progression at least.

Master Scribe (Ex)Scroll Mastery (Ex)
This is more or less directed at Artificers, and makes it that much easier to activate scrolls, almost eliminating any chance of failing your check. Great.

Improved Arcane Mark (Ex)Strong Words (Su)
Potentially helpful for spells with CL dependent effects, like Orb Spells. You have to use a Swift Action to activate However, so only viable in combat if you for some reason have no use for a Swift Action in the round, which is unlikely. Still, Great out of Combat.

Metamagic Scroll (Su)Charged Words (Su)Ghost Writing (Su)
Second only to Master Scribe itself, this Class Feature essentially makes your Arcane Mark/day into free 2nd level Scrolls/day. Note that it has no time duration, allowing you to activate one day, and potentially use the effect sessions into the future. It even appears you can stack Ghost Write on the same scroll multiple times, so you gain massive resources in downtime. This Class Feature Alone makes getting the Lesser and Greater Dragonmark Feats worth it.

Other Prestige Classes

Legacy Champion {WoL}Bloodlines {SRD}
Not actually a Prestige Class, but regardless I will put it here. Bloodlines count towards abilities that calculate based off of Class Level, like Caster Level and the like. As far as I can see, this will progress the Artificers maximum CL for crafting, as well as Master Scribe and other Unbound Scroll abilities. It won't progress spells/infusions, but with the Artificer it does not matter anyways. If you don't go Legacy Champion, this a is a decent alternative, at least for Artificers. Fey, Djinni, or Efreeti are probably best, but any Major Bloodline will do.

Maester {CAd}Chameleon {RoD}
Chameleons have access to all Divine and Arcane spells of up to 6th level, and have feats which can be changed each day. More for the non caster, as it would be better to stick to your usual casting as a caster to get higher level spells. Overall it has great versatility options and able to capitalize on downtime with crafting items such as scrolls, and remain completely combat effective otherwise. Only available to Humans, Doppelgangers, and human blooded individuals with either the feat or variant rule in place.

Geometer {CAr}
With a 1 level dip all your scrolls will have Silent Spell for a 25gp extra price. Just don't use the Spellglyph with spells that have costly material components or else the price will skyrocket. For a 2nd level dip, you can scribe spells into your spellbook on 1 page regardless of the spell level, which will save space and gold in the process. Only useful to Wizards though, but Wizards are pretty much the only casters that qualify to enter this Prestige class so meh. Weird skill requirements for getting in though, so you might have a problem with those.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2011, 05:24:53 AM by TC X0 Lt 0X »
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2011, 11:46:03 AM »
Feats

"Wait a minute (-_-) ..."

Scribe Scroll {SRD}
Unless you are a rogue utilizing UMD and have no interest in Crafting Spells yourself, this feat is essential for any Spell Scribe. This feat is necessary for crafting Scrolls, and is a prerequisite for Unbound Scroll. But you probably have it as a Bonus Feat anyways, so lets move on.


A prerequisite for Unbound Scroll and powers half its class features. If you are going US, you are taking this. If not, it is useless, never consider it.

Lesser Dragonmark [Mark of Scribing] {ECS}
If you want more powerful versions of US class features, this will help. Only 1/day for any of them though, and beyond powering US all your choices are relatively useless. If you are going this route, you need to boost the uses/day in some fashion to make it effective.

Greater Dragonmark [Mark of Scribing] {ECS}
Like above, but requires even more dedication to access. Also like above, your choices are not great and you only get 1/day use. Increase your uses/day ASAP if you get this. But even so, it is effectively a feat that lets you make an additional 6th level scroll a day so it has its uses.

Magic in the Blood {PGtF}
Dragonmarks are described as innate spell-like abilities, and otherwise appears to be racial. This will get you +2/day uses of your Lesser and Greater Dragonmark. Best deal for increasing their quantity. As a bonus it also increase your Gnomish Spell-Likes. Your a Gnome right?

Dragonmark Prodigy/Adept/Visionary {DrMk}
Essentially grants you 3 more uses/day of Least or Lesser Dragonmarks, or 2 uses/day of a Greater Dragonmark, respectivily. If taken with Magic in the Blood, you get 4 uses/day for a Dragonmark. Visionary is preferred, being the feat associated with Greater Dragonmarks.

Skill Focus [Use Magical Device] {SRD}
A simple +3 to UMD. Makes it easier for Artificers to craft and use Scrolls. Great. I prefer Shape Soulmeld though for its extra +1 and bonus to other skills, but this is untyped and potentially better at higher levels.

Quill of Sivis {DrMk}Shape Soulmeld [Mage Spectacles/Elder Spirit] {MoI/DM}
Grants a +4 Insight bonus to UMD checks, as well to 2 other skills, and use them untrained. Mage Spectacles are more thematic, but Elder Spirit is overall superior, especially if you are going the Legacy Champion route.

Item Familiar {SRD}
Grants godly bonuses to you, such as 10% BONUS XP, and bonuses to skills of your choice (cough cough UMD). It can also grant you a bonus spell slot, the Alertness Feat, and can gain abilities from a list. It also makes the item sentient. Obviously you cannot make a scroll into an item familiar. Any qualifying item the character has will do, but I personally suggest an Infinite Scrollcase. The only thing of note is that you must never lose the item, as you will lose the benefits of this feat as well as anything you invested into it. More the reason to make your Infinite Scrollcase the Item Familiar, because if you lose your scrolls you are done for anyways. Great flavor synergy with Legacy Items too.

Exceptional/Extraordinary/Legendary/Magical Artisan {ECS/PGtF}
Reduce the crafting costs (Time/GP/XP) for crafting Items. Extraordinary and Legendary are both necessary for reaching 100% cost reduction before epic levels. Exceptional is not all that useful sense Scroll can be made quite quickly anyway (only useful for Scrolls with six 9th Level spells, for example), but the reduction is not much. Magical Artisan applies to a specific Crafting Feat and applies to all costs, great for Wizards which normally only have Scribe Scroll anyways, but do not it does not directly stack with the other Artisan Feats or USs Master Scribe ability (though you do get to calculate cost reduction of 75% the normal cost of the item). Useful at lower levels but should be retrained once you hit 100% efficiency.

Chameleon Crafting {D#349}
If you are going a caster/manifester route, this feat is quite acceptable. In essence, it lets you put psionic powers you know on magic crafting feats and vice versa. The Psionic powers cannot be augmented, and you need 1st lv casting and 1st lv manifesting to get it, as well as knowing the power. It has limited uses, but there are some nice powers you may want on a scroll just in case. If you are capable of taking this feat and have room, go for it. Otherwise, you are not missing out on much.

Twin/Quicken/Chain/Repeat Spell / Split Ray {SRD/CAr}
Anything to increase the amount of spells you cast a round. You can craft these in or use one of the abilities that let you add in Metamagic on the fly. It all depends on the situation at hand and what options you have available. The First two are best, but the others can come in handy too.

Extend/Persistent Spell {SRD/Car}
With Ghost Writing you can use Metamagic Scroll (CF or Inf) or Metamagic Spell Completion to buff yourself daily without necessarily wasting any resources. And Extend can be crafted into Scrolls so they last the entire day and still be Ghost Writable.

Alternate Spell Source {D#}
This feat is a great way to change your Divine Spells into Arcane Scrolls and vice versa. this is beneficial for getting around some of the limits of each and getting some of the advantages of each, or for spells that have different effects based on the type of spell it is. It does lower the CL by 1 but this is not a huge problem, and if you can benefit from this then go for it. Also as a side not this feat will allow Clerics and Archivists to enter Unbound Scroll, but note that they will not be able to progress their spellcasting if they do.

Craft Contingent Spell {Car}Other Crafting FeatsOther Metamagic
For specific builds other Metamagic might be necessary for them to function. As long as you have space for them and they are useful, go for it.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2011, 03:05:51 AM by TC X0 Lt 0X »
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2011, 11:46:16 AM »
Items

"Prove me wrong."

The following Items are choices to consider for the aspiring Spell Scribe.

Dedicated Wright [2100gp + 160XP] {ECS}Quill of Scribing [1750gp] {CM}
This Handy little item when activated crafts a Scroll for you. And if you want it is easy to craft by Lv5 as well. Like a Dedicated Wright for any kind of Crafter, it allows you to keep adventuring while continuing to produce scrolls. It is naturally limited to only scrolls however, but Wizards, Archivists, and other non-Artificers will fine this extremely useful. The only problem I see is that, like Dedicated Wrights, it does not allow you to craft more than one magic item a day. It is also limited to 1 single spell per scroll a day. Bummer, but it is still worth picking up one.

Autoscribe [55000gp] {http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/cw/20070326a}Infinite Scrollcase [2800gp] {MiC}
This item can hold up to 50 scrolls in it (in other words 300 spells, or more with Ghost Writing). This in itself is nothing that a Handy Haversack could not do. It however has two more functions. First it provides a +4 Competence bonus to casting defensively with scrolls stored in the Scrollcase. And Second and most importantly, the scrollcase allow you to retrieve a scroll from it as part of a move action (note, NOT as a move action). So you can pull out a scroll and move in the same round. In Mid battle this also means you do not need to drop your scroll mid-battle, as you can use a Move Action to store the scroll in the Scrollcase and pull out another scroll. Very Handy. A must have.

Spellsight Spectacles [2500gp] {MiC}
Gives you a +5 competence bonus to deciphering scrolls with Spellcraft (mostly worthless) and to activating scrolls with Use Magical Device (which is great). If you are lacking a competence bonus to Use Magical Device as large as this, and need an extra boost to use Scrolls effectively, this is for you.


Essentially a Light Shield with a spot which can have a single scroll made on it (reusable). The Scroll only cost half the normal gp, which is nice, but it can only be of up to 3rd level. Still, as a Light Shield it does not hinder your ability to hold another scroll in it. Best spells to put on it are emergency spells, like Close Wounds, or Feather Fall. Either way it is a 7th spell in hand. And naturally provides a Shield bonus to AC.

Spare Hand [12000gp] {MoE}Scarf of Spellcatching [18000gp] {DMG2}
This item grants a +2 Luck bonus vs Spells and Spell-like abilities. In addition to this, it can absorb a spell you successfully save against, as long as that spell specifically targets you, and you can cast that spell as if it were being cast from a scroll with a UMD check. It can only absorb up to 20 spell levels, and after that it destroyed. Note however that if an incoming spell has a higher spell level then it can absorb, the spell is completely negated, with no need to save (then it is destroyed). Overall a bit expensive for a temporary item, but at mid-levels it can absorb a BGs spells which may be higher level then you normally have access to, giving you extra fire power, and negating any spell bigger than it can hold is a life saver.

Casting Glove [25000] {MiC}
Acts as a glove of storing, but you can activate any magic item stored in it as if you were holding it. Essentially it lets you keep an extra scroll in hand. Also if I am reading correctly, activating a magic item without retrieving it from the gloves requires a standard action, meaning scrolls with casting times of 1 round or greater can be cast as a Standard action from a Caster glove. I must be misreading here.

Robe of Many Sigils [7300gp] {F&P}Optional Spell Components [Various] {CM/CC}
OSCs can increase the effectiveness of a scroll dramatically. The costs are equal to the OSCs base cost * the spell level of the spell being applied to. Do note that once you scribe the scroll, with Ghost Writing you can multiply the effects of the OSCs over multiple castings, until you use the base scroll for some reason. You can only apply these to non Metamagiced spells, and only 1 can effect a spell. Not very good for higher level spells overall, but definitely great for anything Ghost Writeable.
Angel Down/Fairy Dust/Possibility Dust/Serpents Tongue: Extends Abjuration/Transmutation/Creation/Enchantment spells, respectively.
Devil's Eye/Dragon's Tear: Heightens Spell Level by 1 (which means +2 CL/+1 DC) to Divination/Fire or mind-affecting spells, respectively.
Fairy Button/Singing Shell: Widens Illusion/Sonic spells, respectively.
Golden Desert honey: Rapids Summoning Spells (Casting time 1 full action = 1 standard).
Singing Shell: Enlarges ranged Sonic Spell.
Ashes of Power: Roll Twice and choose better result for Dispel Magic or Break Enchantment.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2011, 03:07:16 AM by TC X0 Lt 0X »
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2011, 11:46:26 AM »
Spells


The thing about Spells in Scrolls is, unlike spells cast by Spellcasters, they have low DCs that you cannot boost easily, and are not worth boosting for that matter. So when choosing spells for your scrolls, spells that do not allow Saving Throws, have effects which either have reduced effects with a save or effects separate from the ones which allow a save, or spells that buff allies are the best choices. At higher levels, a Scrolls Save DC would likely only be failed on a 1 by the average character. Also be weary of SR, as spells crafted at lower levels will have hard times piercing SR, and while not as devastating as DCs, it can hamper your effectiveness.

Spell Suggestions1st Lv Spells
[spoiler]Lesser Orb of X / Chill of the Grave {SpC}
Probably the preferred blasting spells for the 1st levels, They scale well and have no SR or Save. I also mention Chill of the Grave for the Artificers or maybe Archivists and Clerics. It does allow SR, but at these levels it does not matter much. At CL1 and CL2 it is superior to Orbs with a d10 damage to the orbs d8/d6. At CL3 level Orbs get there 2nd Damage Dice, surpassing Chill. At CL4 Chill momentarily catches up with its 2nd Damage Dice. At CL5 and up the Orbs completely surpass Chill. Of course, this is assuming you have not just moved on to Seeking Ray/Scorching Ray already at this level.

Cure Light Wounds / Faith Healing / Lesser Vigor {SRD/SpC}
Keep one or two around if you can use them for emergencies. Cure Light Wounds is the traditional choice, but in certain campaigns Faith Healing is strictly superior to CLW, or even CMW in some cases. Lesser Vigor however is still the best out of combat healing around at this level.


You could blast with your Orb Spells at this level, but you will probably do more damage by having your Fighter Swinging his Greatsword an additional time. At the very least, in an unoptimized party, this will make the other players feel like they are doing all the work and not be overshadowed by you..

Obscuring Mist / Wall of Smoke {SRD/SpC}
Your Fog Spells will help get you out of a lot of jams. Obscuring Mist is a lot less obvious then a Wall of Smoke if you are trying to sneak around at night (as far any NPCs would know it is probably just natural fog) but Wall of Smoke Will block line of sight while not cloaking your party or the battlefield in a thick cloud that could easily backfire on you. And Wall of Smoke can potentially make those passing through it nauseated with a failed Fort Save, which can potentially end the encounter right there.

Summon X I {Various}Resurgence {SpC}
Not as great at low levels, but it gets valuable at higher levels and remains so after that. Spending an action to allow your party member to get back his actions is well worth it.

Ebon Eyes {SpC}
Darkness can make it impossible to combat an enemy, especially Magical Darkness. And sometimes Torches or Light Spells are dead giveaways.

Swift Invisibility {SpC}
Essentially one attack vs Flat-Footed AC or virtual invulnerability against anyone for 1 round by using a Swift Action, at least at lower levels. Also makes it easier to disappear in a pinch (though the verbal component of reading the scroll is a dead giveaway of your presence).

Improvisation {SpC}Disguise Self {SRD}Silent Image {SRD}
At the very least can fool someone for a round, and at best draw the attention of mindless creatures and away from the rest of the party.

Ray of Enfeeblement/ Clumsiness {SRD/SpC}Protection from X {SRD}
Evil is the obvious choice in most cases, but regardless it stops mind control and most melee summons at the very least.

Detect X {SRD}
Evil is the obvious choice in most cases, and it can be useful in picking out the bad guys.

Wieldskill (PGtF)
Helps cover up any skill holes in the party, making you effectively a Lv7 Character with full ranks in a skill. Alternatively you can gain Proficiency with ANY weapon or Armor touched, but that is not as useful. Not going to help with any combat skills in most situations either, unless you Quicken it.

Lay of the Land {SpC}
Keep one in hand just in case you are lost or exploring an area. Overall great utility.

True Casting {CM}
Great for getting over SR if you have a round free to prepare.

True Strike {SRD}
Better Quickened, but with this you will never miss an attack roll (probably).

Scholar's Touch (RoD)
Read a book in six seconds. Just in case RP wants you to read a book.

Instant Locksmith/Search {SpC}
When in a hurry these can let you do an Open Lock/Search check in a round instead of sitting there for 10min.

Feather Fall {SRD}Enlarge Person/Reduce Person {SRD}
Buff yourself and your allies when their current size does not fit.

Snuff the Light {DotU}
Light can give off your position far easier than the sound of your voice.

Expeditious Retreat / Swift {SRD/SpC}
If you need to clear some distance in a hurry, either of these will do.

Nerveskitter/Shock and Awe {SpC}
Buffing and Debuff initiative so you can take the first action (which means everything at higher levels)

Unseen Servant/Wood Wose {SRD/Spc}
Because sometimes things are heavy, and you can use the extra hand.

Blockade/Hold Portal {SpC/SRD}
Helps to block a path, when necessary. Blocakade is somewhat superior in most situations.

Benign Transposition {SpC}
Helps control the battlefield by switching weaker allies like the caster or skill monkey with the fighter. Dissolves grapples with summons on the field.

Create Trap {RotD}
Situationally useful but effective at lower levels. Can make an ambush extremely easy or slow down pursuers.

Decomposition {CD}
Great Damage if your enemies are in large numbers, 3 damage/round to injured enemies helps in prolonged battles.

Know Greatest Enemy {SpC}
Just to check if you actually want to start that bar fight.

Joyful Noise {SpC}Persistent Blade {MoF}
Makes a weapon deal damage on its own and flank to help you and allies.

Power Word Pain {RotD}
Crap is stupid at low levels. Cast it at BBEG, walk out of the room, come back in 5 mins. Well it is not that strong, but it is definitely great when the situation for it arises.

Pass Without Trace {SRD}
« Last Edit: October 24, 2011, 03:18:06 AM by TC X0 Lt 0X »
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2011, 11:46:37 AM »
reserved
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2011, 12:25:07 PM »
Feel free to post now.
*Hopes he did not post a pile of crap for all to see X|*
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Mooncrow

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2011, 01:56:47 PM »
Hey neat!  I was just in the middle of my scroll write up for my archivist guide^^  Maybe was can pillage each other's ideas ;)  Of course, mine mostly focuses on making scrolls that you don't have the spells for. One thing you may want to note is that the person with Scribe Scroll does not necessarily need to know the spell in order to craft it thanks to the cooperative crafting rules.

Relevant passage:

[spoiler]

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2011, 02:14:29 PM »
Oh yes I am well aware of that, and my Artificer who inspired the guide has been utilizing the Cleric to Great effect.

That is indeed something I must mention.
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sirpercival

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2011, 04:14:00 PM »
A couple of notes.

1) You should include Binder in the classes section, because Astaroth can give you Scribe Scroll. If you combine it with Anima Mage, you can craft pretty much anything you want.

2) Don't forget the Magical Artisan feat.

3) An artificer or warlock should aim for Trapsmith spells whenever possible.  A scroll of Trapsmith haste costs 12.5 gp.
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2011, 10:27:40 PM »

Chameleon Crafting feat in Dr#349 ... make scrolls of psi powers.
Slight cost increase; limited usefulness. Augment powers don't aug.
Still it's not bad.

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2011, 11:26:10 PM »
Oh, and the Alternative Source Spell feat, for non-artificers who want to scribe scrolls both arcane and divine.
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2011, 11:55:53 PM »
You might want to mention apprentice (craftsman), even though it's worse than extraordinary artisan. 

Chameleon is a decent scroll-scribing class.  They can choose scribe scroll as their bonus feat on any given day and have access to all spell lists. 

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #14 on: October 22, 2011, 03:23:13 AM »
Included in some of the suggestions. Thanks for the support.

A couple of notes.

1) You should include Binder in the classes section, because Astaroth can give you Scribe Scroll. If you combine it with Anima Mage, you can craft pretty much anything you want.

2) Don't forget the Magical Artisan feat.

3) An artificer or warlock should aim for Trapsmith spells whenever possible.  A scroll of Trapsmith haste costs 12.5 gp.

Binder is added, though they will be tricky to run.

The Magical Artisan Feat is grouped up with the Eberron Artisans, for the sake of being simple.

I don't want to include or worry about some of the prestige classes with low level spells, on account that some of it is bad cheese, and that listing them all would be difficult at best. There are already lists for such things for Artificers out there anyways so i believe those will suffice.


Chameleon Crafting feat in Dr#349 ... make scrolls of psi powers.
Slight cost increase; limited usefulness. Augment powers don't aug.
Still it's not bad.


Added.

Oh, and the Alternative Source Spell feat, for non-artificers who want to scribe scrolls both arcane and divine.

Added.

You might want to mention apprentice (craftsman), even though it's worse than extraordinary artisan. 

Chameleon is a decent scroll-scribing class.  They can choose scribe scroll as their bonus feat on any given day and have access to all spell lists. 

Added.
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #15 on: October 22, 2011, 08:21:33 PM »
there is a feat called theurgic creationist from dragon 325.

[spoiler]you can create items using the knowledge gained from all your spellcasting classes. prereq: any item creation feat, able to cast spells from two different spell lists. benefit: when acquiring item creation feats or when creating magic items, you can add together the caster levels of all your spellcasting classes to determine your caster level. for example, a bard1/cleric1/wizard3 could gain craft wand and create magic items as a 5th level caster.[/spoiler]

note that artificers explicitly have a caster level. if you have a wiz1/clr1/arti5, you could take practiced caster feat twice, once for wiz and once for clr, and your caster level in each becomes 5. thus your total caster level becomes 15 at 7th level. but as an artificer you get +2 caster level for casting scrolls, so for scrolls that would be 17th caster level.

find a way to mitigate xp or get others to pay the xp cost (player's handbook 2 web enhancement for that) and you'll be crafting 9th level spell scrolls by 7th level.... and with umd item boosts, you'll probably be able to actually cast it too.

note that scrolls crafted with artificer involved become non-arcane/non-divine scrolls. nobody but artificers can cast from them unless they succeed on an umd check.

also, i believe that the feat was intended only to ease the pain of multiclassing caster/crafters. due to wording it is open to caster level abuse, regardless if one considers the artificer to technically be a "spellcasting" class or not.

might be worth mentioning that there is an arcane college (faerun) in which membership benefits grant the ability to "craft items using their resources", thus you get to craft items without the necessary feats for which you otherwise meet the prereqs....
« Last Edit: October 22, 2011, 09:00:11 PM by nijineko »
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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #16 on: October 22, 2011, 11:12:43 PM »
note that artificers explicitly have a caster level. if you have a wiz1/clr1/arti5, you could take practiced caster feat twice, once for wiz and once for clr, and your caster level in each becomes 5. thus your total caster level becomes 15 at 7th level. but as an artificer you get +2 caster level for casting scrolls, so for scrolls that would be 17th caster level.
Artificer do have caster level, however, they do not use their caster level for crafting. They have an entirely different score for crafting called "Effective Caster Level" which is not effected by their caster level at all. The +2 bonus is for determining what they can create but does not actually effect the resulting caster level of the item (if the item duplicates a spell effect). Theurgic Creationist does not work with effective caster level so if the person is using their artificer abilities to craft, they can not use Theurgic Creationist. If they use one of their other classes to craft then they use the artificer's caster level, not effective caster level. The only thing this really gets you while trying to craft as an artificer is early access to item creation feats (at the cost of two feats and two class levels).
Quote
note that scrolls crafted with artificer involved become non-arcane/non-divine scrolls. nobody but artificers can cast from them unless they succeed on an umd check.
Even artificers have to use UMD to cast from their own scrolls.

Edit: Sorry if that came off kinda harsh. I have a searing headache right now.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2011, 11:42:39 PM by Bastian »

Bastian

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #17 on: October 22, 2011, 11:29:39 PM »
Exceptional/Extraordinary/Legendary/Magical Artisan {ECS/PGtF}
Reduce the crafting costs (Time/GP/XP) for crafting Items. Extraordinary and Legendary are both necessary for reaching 100% cost reduction before epic levels. Exceptional is not all that useful sense Scroll can be made quite quickly anyway (only useful for Scrolls with six 9th Level spells, for example), but the reduction is not much. Magical Artisan applies to a specific Crafting Feat and applies to all costs, great for Wizards which normally only have Scribe Scroll anyways, but do not it does not directly stack with the other Artisan Feats or USs Master Scribe ability (though you do get to calculate cost reduction of 75% the normal cost of the item). Useful at lower levels but should be retrained once you hit 100% efficiency.
Cost reductions do not add together since cost is a real world value and thus you use real world math (not dnd math). As a result, you can never craft for nothing (except in specific circumstances where it says to subtract a specific amount of gold). For example two reduction of 25% do not result in you crafting for 50% of the price, they result in you crafting for 56.25% of the price (100-0.25*100=75, 75-0.25*75=56.25)

Edit: For advice on crafting cheaply see my handbook (link in my sig).

Bastian

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #18 on: October 22, 2011, 11:34:07 PM »
Reason being is you must have the Mark of Scribing to get into Unbound Scroll, which is exclusive to Gnomes.
Actually, the Mark of Scribing is not exclusive to Gnomes. Read the Reincarnation in Eberron side bar here.

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Re: Papyrus & Ink: A Player's Guide to Scrolls for the Aspiring Spell Scribe
« Reply #19 on: October 22, 2011, 11:51:41 PM »
Reason being is you must have the Mark of Scribing to get into Unbound Scroll, which is exclusive to Gnomes.
Actually, the Mark of Scribing is not exclusive to Gnomes. Read the Reincarnation in Eberron side bar here.

JEBUS.
Some DMs might not like it, but otherwise this is very nice.
Thanks for the insight.
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