Casting Defensively

With the multitude of feats and abilities that seek to impede spellcasting it has come to my attention I should clarify the concept of casting defensively in this campaign. Given the differences in spellcasting systems, as noted in the Hero’s Guide to Faerun, there is no need to cast defensively as a defined action. Instead, the act of avoiding being struck in combat while casting, is baked into the spellcasting check. This is represented by the standard +5 penalty to the check DC when the caster is threatened in combat. Some feats may offer a bonus or penalty for casting defensively. In this case, replace penalties or bonuses to casting defensively with a similar bonus/penalty to the standard spellcasting check except make that bonus/penalty one-half of its listed value. In cases where the feat or ability would cause a specific effect to someone casting defensively, it similarly effects those who are casting normally.

As an example, here are two feats that provide bonuses and/or penalties as such:

  • Combat Casting: Detailed in the Hero’s Guide to Faerun. The standard effect is to grant a +4 bonus to ‘casting defensively’. In place of that, the feat simply lowers the penalty for casting while threatened in melee from +5 to +3.
  • Disruptive: This was not detailed in the Hero’s Guide to Faerun. The standard effect is to grant +4 penalty to threatened spellcasters who are ‘casting defensively’. Instead it grants a +2 penalty to the spellcasting check DC of threatened targets attempting to cast any spell.

Casting Defensively

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