OngoingWorlds blog

News & articles about play-by-post games, for roleplayers & writers


More opinions about downsides when casting magic

character powers with penalties

A few weeks ago we posted an article by Squidlord about why penalties for magical powers is bad. There was a lot of discussion about this (go read the comments). I asked the roleplayers on RPG-Directory what they thought about this too, and got some great answers.

RPG-D user Whoa made a great comment:

Limits are fun. It helps you build a character and actually make it seem like there’s some real weight to these choices we make. It makes excellent moments happen, sacrifices are delicious. I always feel that when I’m making a character, it’s the flaws they have that really makes them who they are. Same with the powers, if I want to make a character with powers, its downside is probably the first thing I come up with and really want to play. The power is just an extra! – Whoa

Bonemeal says:

Always. There’s always got to be a price.

Secondly, a balance of power is to be expected. A non-magic caster: say, a berserker or an assassin, has ‘penalties’ for their physical skills. So why would wizards get excused from penalties? If anything, there ought to naturally be more penalties. Cool down periods, side affects, inability to control or select the spell. – Bonemeal

There’s also a discussion about whether magic in the Harry Potter universe has penalties, and some more on-the-fence opinions. I’ve picked only a few comments from here, so if you want to see the rest and continue the discussion you’ll find the thread here.