Adjusting the Initiate career

The thousand threads
Post Reply
Machete_Matt
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2019 7:34 pm

Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:37 pm

I am bothered by the contrast between the Apprentice Wizard and Initiate basic careers. Am thinking about changing the Initiate career as a house rule. Wondering if anyone else has pondered the same thing and come to a solution, or if there are great arguments for why the career is perfect as is.

Basic juxtaposition
The Apprentice Wizard gets spells from the start. The Hedge Wizard gets spells from the start, though fairly lousy ones.

The Initiate has to wait until becoming a Priest to get Petty spells. What they get as Priests is fairly weak buff spells (when compared to the Petty (Arcane) list), though especially Might and Protection can be very useful. The Priest career stage perhaps fits a D&D cleric stereotype, where the role combines combat ability with buffs.

The Initiate does have combat-related advances, both characteristics and talents, that the Apprentice Wizard does not get. This gives the character something to fall back on while waiting to become a Priest. The Initiate career might also work as is very well for combat characters in their 3rd or 4th careers who are becoming members of religious knightly orders (Career Entries include Knight, Vampire Hunter, and Witch Hunter).

The query
What if one were to separate the mundane religious initiate (with combat skills) and the divine magic user to-be from each other, instead of forcing both types into one career? The divine magic user could gain petty magic already in the first career, if a few skills were moved over from the Priest career. Note that the Priest has a very large number of advances, even if coming from Initiate they still need 22 advances (quick count, may be off by one or two) to complete the career. So this would not really weaken that career, I think.

As a follow-up, the Priest - Anointed Priest - High Priest sequence would have to be adjusted. Is there any ill effect from making High Priest Magic advance +4, or should the max Divine magic be kept at 3?

Would this break the underlying idea of religion + combat + magic too much? Or would it be overpowered because of Warhammer society's reaction: the magic-wielding initiate will be viewed positively, while the Apprentice Wizard encounters suspicions that dampen their power?


Thoughts, do you agree or disagree? Has someone already done this?
GeneralRykof
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2019 9:24 am

Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:51 am

I think you're last statement pretty much nails the main reasons as to why they did this originally. Divine Magic is supposed to be safer, and is in actual game mechanics less risky than using arcane magic. If divine spellcasters got all the same benefits at the same time as their arcane counterparts, and then also had the safer Divine Punishment as opposed to Tzeench's Curse then they end up just being a lot more mechanically blessed. Not to mention what you also said about divine magic being much more acceptable so you don't have that RP stigma with it.

I think it fits with the lore for divine magic to be weaker than arcane. But of course an argument could be made for the later. The Tome of Salvation 2e book gives guidelines for switching many divine careers over to more spell casting and less martial skills. You could look at those and apply it similarly to initiate as well in basically how you said. Wouldn't have to do much just bumping everything down a notch so that initiate is magic 1 with petty, priest 2 with specific divine lore, and then high priest gets 3; but it is a big buff to priests so you'd have to be willing to go with that. If you do go with this then I would say you'd have to think about dropping the Armored Casting Talent. Otherwise you just end up with armored spell-casting warriors who are great at everything. I mean Warrior Priests are already that but you have to wait a long time to get to that career.

You're the DM though so if you want more powerful priests then I say go with it! See how it works out.

Warhammer Fantasy has never been about balance. It's all about staying in the flavor of the lore, and of course, having fun.
Braddoc
Posts: 18
Joined: Sun Aug 11, 2019 10:16 pm

Wed Nov 06, 2019 1:03 am

I believe it comes from the fact that in the Old world you are born with the ability to use the Winds of Magic, and it suddenly appears one day in the open, while a Priest uses Faith and prayer to communicate with his God and do 'spells', hance why an initiate is basically a student staring up while the apprentice wizard just need to pass his exams.
User avatar
Orin J.
Posts: 239
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:39 pm

Wed Nov 06, 2019 7:24 pm

I've never had the issue of divine magic taking too long, and in fact found it frequently comes too damn early because of how powerful it often is over all. personally i required most divinely empowered types to undertake a quest to "prove themselves" before actually letting them take any magic. Really, the real problem is more to me that D&D has enforced this image that priests should all have magic on the RPG settings when for warhammer it should be very very rare that any of them ever actually do.
User avatar
skerrigan
Posts: 87
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:31 pm
Location: UK
Contact:

Thu Nov 07, 2019 3:30 am

Actually in OD&D clerics didn't get spells until 2nd level.

In the lore of WFRP I'm happy with the 1e/2e approach as it means that not every priest is a spell-caster. Divine magic is relatively rare, not ubiquitous. It also allows for most of the clergy to be non-spellcasting, making friars, flagellants and all the other non-spellcasting religious careers make sense. It also means you can have the toady, fat, gold ring-toting corrupt Lector of Sigmar who can't be gainsaid when Sigmar stops giving him healing spells.

3e I think moved to the other direction.. Nearly every priest could dole out spells.
Verdant Castellan of Bretonnia and Purveyor of the Perilous Realm Podcast
makrellen
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2019 1:01 am

Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:57 am

Personally I prefer 1st editions approach where they don’t have spells in the initiate career but gain access to 1st level spells as soon as they become priests.

It makes the field more even in late careers but still underlines the whole “you are just a servant who happens to be religious “ aspect in early careers.
Post Reply