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Friday, August 2, 2019

Confusion Spell: Simplified

Some people prefer spell descriptions to be as short as possible. One-liners, even. The Confusion spell is certainly one that could use a rewrite that would simplify it, since the by-the-book version has the GM rolling for number of confused creatures, delay until confusion takes effect, and what confused creatures do, which is rolled every turn for 12 turns, as are all the saving throws. It’s a monstrosity.

How about this instead?
Confusion (4th Level Mind Spell)
Randomizes the target of any action taken by confused victims. 3 HD victims save on first turn, 4+ HD victims save every turn to escape confusion for 1 turn.
Any action – helpful or harmful, performed on oneself or another person – affects a random target. Everyone a victim could reasonably perform the action on, including themselves, rolls dice, and the target with the lowest roll becomes the actual target for the action. So, confused victims can attack a friend, heal an enemy, try to take the helmet off of a wolf, or any number of confused actions.

Players have an advantage in that they can choose to take no actions at all until the confusion goes away. But this seems like a reasonable advantage.

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  1. Wow. I love it. I love you. Thank you.

  2. So does this mean that 1-2HD victims dont save for the duration of the spell, and that 3HD victims only save once? Its not super clear.

    Still, if my understanding is right, is quite elegant. I might morph it a bit by increasing the the difficulty by +1 on the spell and then each HD adds a +1 to their save on the first round just for ease of use on my end. Good idea nonetheless

    1. "So does this mean that 1-2HD victims dont save for the duration of the spell, and that 3HD victims only save once?"

      Yes. In the original Confusion spell, creatures with 2 HD or less get no save. Creatures with 4 HD or more get a save every turn to see if they are temporarily unaffected. Technically, creatures of 3 HD don't get a save, but there's a 12-sided die roll which you subtract the m-u
      s level from to see if there's a turn delay. I decided that was overly complicated for a unique mechanic and just turned it into a single save to see if there's a turn delay.