Dedicated Mage (3.5e Class)
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- 1 Dedicated Mage
A Dedicated Mage combines his/her innate spell casting ability with study and arcane knowledge to become the most versatile and perhaps powerful spell caster there is. Dedicated Mages are born with magic in their blood, just as Sorcerers are, but they strive for more than what their innate power can let them do. Because of this, Dedicated Mages also study just like Wizards do to further their spell casting power. This gives a Dedicated Mage the best of both classes allowing them to be specialized spell casters, while also having the freedom of spell preparation to allow them to have a wide variety of uses.
Making a Dedicated Mage
A Dedicated Mage (hereby just referred to as “mage”) is a very powerful full spell caster, but very weak up front melee combatant. Mage's prefer to be behind a strong fighter or paladin type (Tank), while they stand back and rain down spells from safety. Due to their small amount of prepared spell casting, they can also be good situational spell casters that can prepare useful non-combat spells ahead of time to help out a party in specific tasks.
Abilities: Despite the majority of a Mage's spell casting being spontaneous, Intelligence is the main stat for them. They rely on Intelligence to learn new spells like a Wizard does and perfect their learned spontaneous spells. Intelligence determines how powerful a spell a Mage can cast, how many spells he/she can cast, and how hard those spells are to resist (see Spells, below). A high Dexterity score is helpful for a Mage, who typically wears little or no armor, because it provides him/her with a bonus to Armor Class. A good Constitution score gives a Mage extra hit points, a resource that he/she is otherwise very low on.
Races: Same as Sorcerer. A Dedicated Mage is essentially a natural born arcane magic user, like a Sorcerer, that seeks extra power and flexibility. Humans and the Elven races are often Mages. More savage races are very rarely Mages because of their lack of educational resources that Wizards need. The more savage races tend to stick strictly to Sorcerer.
Alignment: Where Sorcerers favor chaos over law, and Wizards favor law over chaos, Mages can be any alignment. Some may stay closer to their natural innate magic, and some will stay closer to the educational side of arcane magic. A Mage will typically lean towards their preferred type of learning, but it's totally normal to see Mages that stay in the middle ground that is neutrality.
Starting Gold: 3d4 x 10 (75gp)
Starting Age: Mages typically start finding out about their magic, and "practicing" it at an early age just as Sorcerers do. However, sometimes a Dedicated Mage will get his/her Sorcerer spells before their Wizard spells because they have been learning on their own with no education/study. Talk to you DM about that situation if it applies to you.
|Saving Throws||Special||Spells per Day|
|1st||+0||+0||+0||+2||Summon Familiar, Scribe Scroll||2+2||1+1||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|10th||+5||+3||+3||+7||Wizard Bonus Feat||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||1+1||—||—||—||—|
|20th||+10||+6||+6||+12||Wizard Bonus Feat||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2||3+2|
Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
All of the following are class features of the Dedicated Mage.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Mages are proficient with all simple weapons. They are not proficient with any type of armor or shield. Armor of any type interferes with a sorcerer’s arcane gestures, which can cause his spells with somatic components to fail.
Spells: A Mage casts arcane spells (the same type of spells available to Sorcerers and Wizards), which are drawn from the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list (Player Handbook page 192). A Mage can cast spells just as a Sorcerer and a Wizard can in the same day, even turn after turn. The first entry (before the plus sign) in each cell of the spells table, represents how many spontaneous spells a Mage can cast per day per level (As a Sorcerer). The second entry (after the plus sign) in each cell, represents how many prepared spells a Mage can cast per day per level (As a Wizard). A Mage can cast any spell he/she knows as many times per day as shown in the first entry of each cell without preparing it ahead of time. A Mage must also choose and prepare the remainder of his/her spells (second entry of each cell) ahead of time. To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, a Mage must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level (Int 10 for 0-level spells, Int 11 for 1st-level spells, and so forth). The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a Mage’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the Mage’s Intelligence modifier. The number of spells per day per level is displayed in the table above. In addition, a Mage receives bonus spells per day if he/she has a high Intelligence score (see Table 1–1: Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells, Players Handbook page 8). A Mage can choose whether to treat their bonus spells as prepared or spontaneous slots. A Mage can also choose to split bonus spells between both, but must choose which way they lean in an event of having an odd number of bonus spells per spell level. For example, Kibir is a dedicated mage who leans in the direction of a Wizard. Kibir can choose if he wants to treat all of his bonus spells as prepared spells, or if he would like to split them, with odd splits favoring prepared spells. If Kibir chooses to split bonus spells, then the larger split will favor prepared spells. For example, Kibir gets two bonus first level spells and one bonus second level spell. His first level spells will be split in half (one prepared, one spontaneous), and his second level spell will be a prepared spell. If Kibir was to have 3 bonus spells in a certain level, then two of them would be treated as prepared spells, and one would be treated as a spontaneous spell. The opposite would be true if Kibir leaned more towards Sorcerer and chose to split in favor of spontaneous spells.
Prepared Spells: A Mage must choose and prepare his/her prepared spells ahead of time by getting a good night’s sleep and spending 1 hour studying his/her spellbook. While studying, the Mage decides which spells to prepare (see Preparing Wizard Spells, Player’s Handbook page 177). The Mage automatically receives his/her spontaneous spells upon completion of a full rest. It is possible for a Mage to receive his/her spontaneous spells, but not his/her prepared spells. Given that the Mage had a full night of rest but did not have time to complete his/her study time.
Spontaneous/Learned Spells: A Mage begins play knowing two 0-level spells (also called cantrips) and one 1st-level spells of your choice. At each new Mage level, he/she gains one or more new spells, as indicated on the table below. Unlike spells per day, the number of spells a Mage knows is not affected by his Intelligence score. These new spells that are gained can be common spells chosen from the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list (Player’s Handbook page 192), or they can be unusual spells that the Mage has gained some understanding of by study. For example, a Mage with a scroll or spellbook detailing an unusual Sorcerer/Wizard spell (one not on the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list in the Player’s Handbook) could select that spell as one of his/her new spells for attaining a new level, provided that it is of the right spell level. The Mage can’t use this method of spell acquisition to learn spells at a faster rate, however. Upon reaching 4th level, and at every even-numbered Mage level after that (6th, 8th, and so on), a Mage can choose to learn a new spell in place of one he/she already knows. In effect, the Mage “loses” the old spell in exchange for the new one. The new spell’s level must be the same as that of the spell being exchanged, and it must be at least two levels lower than the highest-level Mage spell the Mage can cast. For instance, upon reaching 4th-level, a Mage could trade in a single 0-level spell (two spell levels below the highest-level Mage spell he can cast, which is 2nd) for a different 0-level spell. At 6th level, he/she could trade in a single 0-level or 1st-level spell (since he/she now can cast 3rd-level Mage spells) for a different spell of the same level. A Mage may swap only a single spell at any given level, and must choose whether or not to swap the spell at the same time that he/she gains new spells known for the level.
Familiar: (See page 52 in Player's Handbook for all information on Familiars). A Mage can obtain a familiar. Doing so takes 24 hours and uses up magical materials that cost 100 gp. A familiar is a magical beast that resembles a small animal and is unusually tough and intelligent. The creature serves as a companion and servant. The Mage chooses the kind of familiar he gets. As the Mage advances in level, his familiar also increases in power. If the familiar dies or is dismissed by the Mage, the Mage must attempt a DC 15 Fortitude saving throw. Failure means he loses 200 experience points per Mage level; success reduces the loss to one-half that amount. However, a Mage’s experience point total can never go below 0 as the result of a familiar’s demise or dismissal. For example, suppose that Kibir is a 3rd-level Mage with 3,230 XP when his owl familiar is killed by a bugbear. Kibir makes a successful saving throw, so he loses 300 XP, dropping him below 3,000 XP and back to 2nd level (see the Dungeon Master’s Guide for rules for losing levels). A slain or dismissed familiar cannot be replaced for a year and day. A slain familiar can be raised from the dead just as a character can be, and it does not lose a level or a Constitution point when this happy event occurs. A character with more than one class that grants a familiar may have only one familiar at a time.
Scribe Scroll: At 1st level, a Mage gains Scribe Scroll as a bonus feat. This feat enables him/her to create magic scrolls (see Scribe Scroll, Player’s Handbook page 99, and Creating Magic Items, page 282 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide).
Wizard Bonus Feat: At 10th, and 20th level, a Mage gains a bonus feat just as a Wizard does. At each such opportunity, he/she can choose a metamagic feat, an item creation feat, or Spell Mastery. The Mage must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including caster level minimums. (See Player’s Handbook Chapter 5 for descriptions of feats and their prerequisites.) These bonus feats are in addition to the feat that a character of any class gets every three levels (as given on Table 3–2: Experience and Level-Dependent Benefits, Player’s Handbook page 22). The Mage is not limited to the categories of item creation feats, metamagic feats, or Spell Mastery when choosing these feats, but they are the most common and most useful feats that can be taken.
Bonus Languages: Same as Wizard. A Mage may substitute Draconic for one of the bonus languages available to the character because of his/her race (see Player’s Handbook Chapter 2: Races). Many ancient tomes of magic are written in Draconic, and apprentice Mages often learn it as part of their studies.
Spell Book: Just as Wizards do, Mages have a small spell book for his/her prepared spell preparation (See "Spellbooks", page 57 of the Player's Handbook)
Epic Dedicated Mage
2 + Int modifier skill points per level.
Spells: The Mage's caster level is equal to his/her class level. The Mage's number of spells per day does not increase after 20th level. The Mage does not learn additional spells unless he/she selects the Spell Knowledge feat. However, he/she may add two additional spells per level gained to his/her spell book.
Familiar: The Mage’s familiar continues to increase in power. Every two levels beyond 20th (22nd, 24th, 26th, and so on), the familiar's natural armor and Intelligence each increase by +1. The familiar's spell resistance is equal to the master's class level + 5 (See Epic Level Handbook page 15-16).
Bonus Feats: The epic Mage gains a bonus feat (selected from a combined list of epic Sorcerer and Wizard bonus feats) every three levels after 20th.
Epic Mage Bonus Feat List: Augmented Alchemy, Automatic Quicken Spell, Automatic Silent Spell, Automatic Still Spell, Combat Casting, Craft Epic Magic Arms and Armor, Craft Epic Rod, Craft Epic Staff, Craft Epic Wondrous Item, Efficient Item Creation, Enhance Spell, Energy Resistance, Epic Spell Focus, Epic Spell Penetration, Epic Spellcasting, Familiar Spell, Forge Epic Ring, Ignore Material Components, Improved Combat Casting, Improved Heighten Spell, Improved Metamagic, Improved Spell Capacity, Intensify Spell, Master Staff, Master Wand, Multispell, Permanent Emanation, Scribe Epic Scroll, Spell Focus, Spell Knowledge, Spell Mastery, Spell Penetration, Spell Stowaway, Spell Opportunity, Spontaneous Spell, Tenacious Magic..
Human Dedicated Mage Starting Package
Armor None (speed 30ft)
Weapons: Quarterstaff (1d6/1d6, crit x2, 4lb., two-handed, bludgeoning).
Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 2 + Int modifier.
|Move Silently (cc)||2||Dex||0|
Feat: Skill Focus (Spellcraft)
Bonus Feats: Iron Will
Spells Known: 0-level spells: Detect Magic, Light. 1st-level spells: Magic Missile
Spell Book: All 0-level spells; plus one of these spells of your choice per point of Intelligence bonus (if any): Cause Fear, Color Spray, Magic Missile, and Silent Image.
Gear: Backpack with waterskin, one day's trail rations, bedroll, sack, and flint and steel. Ten candles, map case, three pages of parchment, ink, inkpen. Spell component pouch, spellbook.
Gold: 3d4 gp.
Playing a Dedicated Mage
Religion: Mages often worship the same deities that Sorcerers and Wizards do. This includes, but is not necessarily limited to: Boccob, Wee Jas, Nerull, or any other Deity involved in arcane magic. Since Mages don't have to pray/worship to receive their spells, they are not often very religious - some are not religious at all.
Other Classes: Mages, like Wizards, like to be surrounded by a multitude of other classes. They like to cast spells safely behind a large warrior type such as a Paladin, Fighter, or Ranger. They get along well with almost all other classes except for other arcane spell casters such as Sorcerers, Wizards, and perhaps other Dedicated Mages. This is due to their competitive nature, and the need to be more powerful than other arcane casters. Occasionally, a Mage will feel the same way with divine magic users like Druids and Clerics, but this is usually offset by the Mages need for healing and other spell casting that he/she is not capable of.
Combat: Mages are most often ranged combatants. They like to fling spells from behind their tank, and never engage in melee combat.
Advancement: Mages almost never multi-class due to them losing out on higher level spells at higher levels. Prestige classes do work wonderfully with Dedicated Mages due to their lack of special abilities.
Dedicated Mages in the World
Daily Life: Daily life for Mages consists of practicing their magic as Sorcerers do and studying just like Wizards do.
Organizations: Mages sometimes join organizations or schools of arcane study in order to further their knowledge of arcane magic just as Wizards typically do. It is not unheard of, however, for Mages to be more reclusive like Sorcerers and read and learn by themselves. Although, this can sometime limit their learning speed with no mentor.
NPC Reactions: The majority of NPCs won't be able to tell the difference between a Dedicated Mage and his/her Sorcerer/Wizard counterpart. As for other Sorcerers and Wizards, even they might not know the combination of classes that the Mage is unless they ask or are told. Once they know however, Sorcerers will either look down on them because of their lust for knowledge, or they will look up to them for trying to gain additional magic and skills. It depends on the NPC. Wizards, however, will either be amazed or proud of a Mage for seeker more arcane knowledge than they were born with, and some Wizards may even be jealous of the fact that Mages were born with magic in their blood and didn't have to work for everything they have.
Dedicated Mage Lore
Characters with ranks in can research to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
Dedicated Mages in the Game
Dedicated Mages can essentially replace any Sorcerer or Wizard in any campaign. Ask your DM how common they are in your campaign. They should definitely be less common than both Wizards and Sorcerers since they are a combination of both.