Foci rebalance

Nerf foci, but make them more flexible too

These rules are canon for my current campaign.

  • All Foci have a maximum rating of 4. Add (Force x 3) to all foci availability codes. All nuyen costs are multiplied by the focus Force value. (See below for tables that work all this out.)
  • No action (casting one spell, summoning one spirit) can be affected by more than one focus. If you have more than one focus that can help (eg. a spellcasting focus and a power focus), you have to pick one. That focus can only contribute to one aspect of the process eg. the spellcasting test or the drain test, not both.
  • Make spellcasting and summoning foci multi-purpose by combining the subtypes. For example, a single Combat spell Sorcery focus can be used for spellcasting, counterspelling, rituals, or sustaining, however the mage needs at that point in time. However it can only do one thing at once, so if it is sustaining a spell that means it cannot be used for spellcasting while the sustaining is still going.
    • Additionally, allow spell foci and spirit foci to offer dice on the drain resistance test equal to their Force, if they were not used to contribute dice to the sorcery roll.
  • The total Force of all bound foci must be less than or equal to 2x the character’s Magic rating.
  • Remove focus addiction rules.

Idea to discuss but don’t yet have full rules for: foci can be attacked via Astral combat. After a certain amount of damage, their link to their user is disrupted. The focus can no longer be used until it is re-bonded to the user in the usual way (ritual + karma cost.)

Reference tables for focus price/karma changes

Power foci

A Power focus adds its Force to the user’s Magic attribute, and hence all spellcasting and summoning dice pools.

5e RAW Houserule version
F1 6 karma, 18 k¥, 4R unchanged
F2 12 karma, 36 k¥, 8R 12 karma, 72 k¥, 14R
F3 18 karma, 54 k¥, 12R 18 karma, 162 k¥, 21R
F4 24 karma, 72 ¥, 16R 24 karma, 288 k¥, 28R

Spell or spirit foci (karma/nuyen/availability numbers are the same)

For spell foci: for one school of magic (chosen at time of binding the focus), it adds its Force to the dice pool used for one of spellcasting, ritual spellcasting, or counterspelling. Or it can sustain a spell from the chosen school of Force less than or equal to the Force of the focus.

For spirit foci: for a specific type of spirit (chosen at time of binding the focus), it adds its Force to the dice pool used for summoning, banishing, or binding that type of spirit. Or it can be used to increase the user’s Magic rating by its Focus rating for the purposes of determining the maximum total Force of spirits that can be summoned at once.

5e RAW Houserule version
F1 2 karma, 4 k¥, 3R unchanged
F2 4 karma, 8 k¥, 6R 4 karma, 16 k¥, 12R
F3 6 karma, 12 k¥, 9R 6 karma, 36 k¥, 18R
F4 8 karma, 16 k¥, 12R 8 karma, 64 k¥, 24R

Weapon foci

5e RAW Houserule version
F1 3 karma, 7 k¥, 4R unchanged
F2 6 karma, 14 k¥, 8R 6 karma, 28 k¥, 14R
F3 9 karma, 21 k¥, 12R 9 karma, 63 k¥, 21R
F4 12 karma, 28 k¥, 16R 12 karma, 112 k¥, 28R

Metamagic foci

5e RAW Houserule version
F1 3 karma, 9 k¥, 3R unchanged
F2 6 karma, 18 k¥, 6R 6 karma, 36 k¥, 12R
F3 9 karma, 27 k¥, 9R 9 karma, 81 k¥, 18R
F4 12 karma, 36 k¥, 12R 12 karma, 144 k¥, 24R

Qi foci

Not currently sure. Might make them the same as power foci.

Enchanting foci

I cannot imagine why any PC would ever want one of these, so I haven’t houseruled them yet.

Last modified July 9, 2020