Eclipse – Reserve Feats

   First up we have another request: a gamer who wants to know how to build Reserve Feats in the Eclipse: the Codex Persona Classless d20 rules(available in print HERE and in a shareware .pdf version HERE). That’s actually pretty simple, so it’s going up right away.

   Reserve Feats allow a spellcaster who currently has a prepared spell of second level or higher available to use a minor supernatural sub-effect related to that spell as often as they wish and to have a really minor (typically +1 caster level with a particular type of magic) benefit regardless of whether or not he or she has such a spell available. Of course, this is fairly meaningless as a restriction; if you don’t have such a spell available, you won’t be casting it will you? The only way that most spellcasters might “lose” this benefit is by having a first-level spell or two of that type left over after having used up the higher-level spells appropriate to powering their Reserve Feat – and why would anyone have bothered preparing many of those when they have the Reserve Feat to give them limitless access to low-level effects?

   In Eclipse, you can most easily buy this as Path of the Dragon/Shaping, Specialized for increased effect/can only be used to produce a selection of – say – (Casting Attribute Modifier +2, 2 minimum) effects, and Corrupted for increased effect/the effects only work as long as the user has a related spell of at least level two prepared (6 CP). That will allow the Shaping ability to produce effects of up to level one. Ergo, if you want to be able to use some minor fire effects – such as some resistance to fire, the ability to project flames (as per burning hands or produce flame or some such), or a boost to the effective casting level of fire spells as long as you have a higher-level fire-based spell prepared, this works just fine. If you want to use effects related to several kinds of spells, such as electrical, force, and healing spells, just split up that (Casting Attribute +2, 2 Minimum) allotment of effects among those types, and there you are. This version is also self-limiting on effects like Healing spells, since the Path of the Dragon (under Heart of the Dragon), notes that cumulative effects such as healing spells lose potency after 2d6 applications to any one target in a given day. Of course, this version does offer a greater variety of effects than the original Feats, a free choice of effects, and effects related to more than one type of spell. That’s mostly because this is a general effect; it’s a waste of time to come up with a hundred specialized variant feats instead of letting players build their own – and that’s what Eclipse is all about anyway.

   If you want to upgrade to higher-level effects this gets a bit more complicated, since the Path of the Dragon rapidly becomes more expensive as you continue along it. On the other hand, unlimited use of – say Scorching Ray as long as you have a third level or higher fire spell prepared – or perhaps Fireball as long as you have a fourth level or higher fire spell prepared – really ought to be more expensive.

   For that kind of thing you’ll need to buy Shaping, Pulse of the Dragon, and Heart of the Dragon II (up to level one effects), Specialized/can only be used to produce a selection of – say – (Casting Attribute Modifier +2, 2 minimum) effects, Corrupted/only works as long as the user has a related higher-level spell of at least one level higher than the level of the effect being produced prepared. That’s 10 CP for level one effects (both Specialized and Corrupted for reduced cost), 20 CP for level two effects (Specialized for increased effect and Corrupted for reduced cost), and 30 CP for level three effects (both Specialized and Corrupted for increased effect). Going further than that is REALLY expensive – but unlimited use of five or six third level effects really ought to be enough for most characters anyway.

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