When The Wards Come A Tumblin' Down


Well met, fellow brothers and sisters of the School of Thaumaturgy. Thank you all for attending my lecture today. My name is Alefian Thelanthra. It is an honor and a pleasure for me to talk to you and share my thoughts and feelings about the one thing that has really brightened my spirit...the Art of Magic.
Many wizards throughout the ages of time have devised their own personal styles for spellcasting. I would like to preface this lecture today by talking about my personal spellcasting style...When the wards come a tumbliní down. Throughout the ages of time, sorcerers and witches alike have honed their defensive spells to a titanic degree of proficiency. It is not uncommon for a sorcerer or a witch to have several wards on his/her person or several contingencies amalgamated together at any given time. A good defense can make a sorcerer or witch nearly invulnerable to almost everything and everyone. How does a wizard deal with another wizardís indomitable magical defenses? Well, there are several spells that will slice through most any ward or defense, and this is the topic that I would like to address in my lecture today.
One spell that I really like to use when bringing down a wizardís wards is anti-magic aura. Once an anti-magic aura has affected a spellcaster, he/she will not be able to invoke spells for the duration of the anti-magic aura. Most wizards do not think to ward themselves from this particular abjuration. Unlike anti-magic shell, a successful dispel magic with negate an anti-magic aura. However, an unaffected wizard would have to dispel the hostile magic. Under normal circumstances, the affected caster cannot. Furthermore, as long as the anti-magic aura is affecting the wizard, he/she cannot trigger any personal contingencies. This makes anti-magic aura a very deadly spell because it will slice through most any ward or defense. Unless the wizard has a spelltrap or the like in effect, he/she is vulnerable to an anti-magic aura. For all of you wild magicians out there, wildstrike also works very well with this type of strategy. Wildstrike is very similar to an anti-magic aura except that the wildstrike does not negate magic on a casterís person. Instead, it morphs each cast or triggered spell into a wild surge.
Another spell that I have found useful for bringing down powerful wards is barrier reaver. This rare spell creates a temporary opening in an anti-magic shell, prismatic wall, wards of defense, prismatic sphere, reflection, and the like. This opening allows a wizard to hurl spells through the opening and smite the wizard. In addition, the barrier reaver also delivers damage to a sorcerer or a witch who has been affected by the barrier reaver. Lately, I have seen more than a few wizards use spell invulnerability to become immune to an anti-magic shell while putting the anti-magic shell in a persistence spell. I favor this defense myself, but yes, barrier reaver can penetrate this defense and does so quite effectively. Important note, spelltrap cannot absorb a barrier reaver because the barrier reaver is generally targeted at a magical sphere or shell, and not at an individual caster. This also means that spells such as counter spell immunity and spell invulnerability will not help a wizard either. Spells can, however, still be hurled at the offending caster in the round in which the sphere or shell has been penetrated by the barrier reaver. The counter spell immunity or spell invulnerability will protect the wizard from the damaging effects of the barrier reaver.
Sphere of wonder is yet another very deadly spell that will severely cripple any wizards who are in its area of effect. Only one type of magic will function inside the sphere. All other magics will fail. A strategy that I like to use that I have adopted from my master and Uncle, Leurocian Malnagrane, is to render myself immune to a sphere of wonder (by invoking the spell invulnerability spell via a tattoo of power). Then I will invoke the sphere of wonder. Using this tactic allows me to maintain any personal wards and contingencies that do not give off any visible magical aura (such as contingency, chain contingency, Elminsterís evasion, stoneskin, Laeralís disrobement, fly, and, invisibility). As long as the wizards inside the sphereís area of effect do not use the one type of magic that will work within its confines, all of their other magics are helpless to the sphere of wonderís magical negation.
Spells such as dispel magic, dispel enchantment, and Mordenkainenís disjunction can be very effective spells against an enemy who bears a lot of magical wards and defenses. However, rare spells such as Andruiís baneful backfire can prevent and even rebound a dispel magicís negation effects on a wizard, so a sorcerer or witch has to be very careful when hurling a dispel magic spell at a wizard. Maw of chaos is a very powerful assaulting spell that delivers damage and prevents spellcasting and triggered contingencies. Very tough to defend against and its area of effect is very nice.
One of my favorite tactics as of late is to render myself immune to Zalaís disruption via spell invulnerability, touch a wizard with an Ottoís irresistible dance, and then invoke the Zala's disruption spell. Each moment, all wizards (save myself) within the disruptionís area of effect lose spell levels unless they successfully resist the magical disruption, and until the wizards successfully resist the disruption, they will keep losing their memorized spells for the duration of the spell. Malison magics invoked prior to the Zala's disruption can have devastating results. Furthermore, spells such as spelltrap will not prevent the disruption because the disruption affects a specific area and not a specific target. Gunther's kaleidoscopic strike, or even better, eye of Mystra, is a much more efficient spell to wipe away all spells and protections from an individual wizard. However like with the anti-magic aura, an active spelltrap can absorb the eyeís anti-magic ray.
Now, this brings me to the pinnacle of my lecture. How does a wizard slice through a spelltrap without needing to invoke tons of spells? There is one spell that works vs. any spell. Spellstrike. This very powerful alteration allows the sorcerer or witch to negate the effect of a spell cast in either the previous round or the round that the spellstrike is cast. This means that a spelltrap, prismatic sphere, Elminsterís effulgent epuration, black blade of disaster, eye of Mystra, and anti-magic shell can be negated with the spellstrike. However, spells such as contingency, wish, and limited wish, cannot be dispelled with this spell because contingency magics are generally precast. The reason wish and limited wish are unaffected by a spellstrike is because these types of magics have a more divine and global aura of magic that the spellstrike cannot affect.
Well, I hope that my lecture has helped each of you understand that there is no such thing as the perfect defense. The secret to a successful spell battle is to know what to cast and when to cast it, and that is what my spellcasting style is all about. May Mystraís kiss enamor each and everyone of you with creative majesty. Thank you for attending my lecture and always remember that love is the shadow that ripens the wine.

La revedere,
Alefian Thelanthra.


Spell references
Anti-magic aura(Elves of Evermeet, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Anti-magic shell(Playerís Handbook, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Dispel magic(Playerís Handbook, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Wildstrike(Tome of Magic)
Spelltrap(Pages From The Mages)
Barrier reaver(Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Prismatic wall(Playerís Handbook, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Prismatic sphere(Playerís Handbook, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Black blade of disaster(Drow of the Underdark, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Wards of defense(Dragon Magazine #114)
Reflection(Dragon Magazine #114)
Counter spell immunity(Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Spell invulnerability(Pages From The Mages)
Elminsterís effulgent epuration(Pages From The Mages, Wizard's Spell Compendium II)
Persistence(Spells and Magic)
Sphere of wonder(Seven Sisters)
Maw of chaos(Seven Sisters, Wizard's Spell Compendium II)
Tattoo of power(The Complete Shaíirís Handbook)
Contingency(Playerís Handbook, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Chain contingency(Tome of Magic, Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Elminsterís evasion(Pages From The Mages, Wizard's Spell Compendium II)
Stoneskin(Playerís Handbook)
Laeralís disrobement(Seven Sisters, Wizard's Spell Compendium II)
Fly(Playerís Handbook, Wizard's Spell Compendium II)
Invisibility(Playerís Handbook, Wizard's Spell Compendium II)
Dispel enchantment(Dragon Magazine #114, Wizardís Spell Compendium)
Mordenkainenís disjunction(Playerís Handbook)
Zalaís disruption(Dragon Magazine #221)
Andruiís baneful backfire(Wizardís Spell Compendium I)
Ottoís irresistible dance(Playerís Handbook)
Spellstrike(Pages From The Mages)
Limited wish(Playerís Handbook, Wizard's Spell Compendium II)
Wish(Playerís Handbook)
"Malison type spells" such as Greater Malison can be found in Tome of Magic and Wizard Spell Compendium II.


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