White Box Wednesday: Magic User Spells

I wasn’t sure if I was going to do this post with all that’s going one but then I figured what the hell. Let’s keep this going. This week let’s talk about Magic User Spells. Mainly, First Level.

I might touch on higher level spells later on but I think the first level spells are key to whole feel of White Box Magic-Users. There’s only 8 spells. That’s it. Charm Person, Detect Magic, Hold Portal. Light, Protection from Evil/Chaos, Read Languages, Read Magic, and Sleep. That’s all. No Magic Missile. None of the others that have become classics. I admit that I do use the others in my campaigns. But this simple little list emphasizes that the first level character is really an apprentice. It also emphasizes that your answer isn’t on your character sheet vibe. There’s usual no spell for every situation. You have to come up with some out of the box thinking.

But then those few spells are more powerful than later versions. The key spells (IMHO) are Charm Person and Sleep. Why? Charm Person lasts “until dispelled”. No time limit. No extra saves. The target is charmed. And then there’s Sleep. Every grognard out there knows that this is “attack” spell of the low level Magic User. The Magic-User can put to sleep that mob of goblins. No Save. Yeah.

I know this post is a little ramble. It’ s not my best but as of this writing the whole OGL 1.1 drama is still unfolding so I have no idea how I’m going to move ahead this and a few projects. Maybe things will start to clear up soon.

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