Arcane Breath

When the Empire of Scales fell, the dragonborn were violently divided over whom to blame. Most blamed every breed but their own. Some blamed the true dragons whose behind-the-scenes squabbling eventually infected the Empire as a whole. Some blamed the changelings. Some blamed ill fate and the gods. Very few blamed their own arrogance. A handful, though, thought the blame might lie in the fact the Dragonborn ignored many useful tools in their blind pursuit of their own version of "honor". Some of these sects turned to the arts of the sneak, mastering stealth, trickery, and deception (and, oh, there’s a good PP for some future entry), and a few others turned to books and scrolls of arcane art. The very breath of a dragon — and thus of a dragonborn — is formed of pure mystical power, they reasoned, so we ought to be masters of wizardry as well as weapons. Learning to channel the force which powered their breath into their spells was one of the most potent tricks they mastered, and over the ages, they have taught others.

Read on to learn more of these mysterious arts!

(Oh yeah, Breakfast Crunch for the rest of this week and the beginning of next will be focused on FantasyCraft, by Crafty Games.)

(Oh yeah * 2… I notice that people tend to sub to my feedburner feed and then unsub. Sigh. While the most obvious reason is "Dude, your stuff sucks.", I am open to the possibility that the "Read More" thing isn’t coming through properly in FeedBurner so people only get the intro to the articles and none of the meat. In the event this is the case, any FeedBurner subscribers (currently 1) want to let me know so I can see if I can do something about it? (Actually, any feedback from readers… I do have some, I see the hit counts… is always appreciated. If the contact links aren’t working, just send it to

Arcane Breath

Exhalation Of Magic (Paragon) [Breathcasting]

Prerequisite: Dragonborn, Wizard

Benefit: If you expend a healing surge, you may substitute any unexpended encounter attack power with the "Area" keyword for your dragon breath. The area of the spell becomes a Close Blast 3. All other features, such as attack rolls, damage, and so on, remain the same. This consumes your dragon breath for this encounter. This is a free action.

Design Notes: This starts to play a bit with the ‘action economy’ as it allows someone to use a minor action to produce what is normally a standard action. However, it consumes an additional encounter ability and a healing surge, and, in most cases, the area of the spell will be greatly reduced. And, let’s face it, the "coolness factor" of a dragonborn breathing a spell has got to count for something, right? 

Transmuting Breath (Paragon) [Breathcasting]

Prerequisite: Dragonborn, Wizard

Benefit: If you expend a healing surge and you still have a use of dragon breath during this encounter, you may change the damage type of your next spell to the damage type of your dragon breath. This counts as a use of dragon breath. This is a free action.

Design Notes: This is both more and less flexible than Arcane Admixture. You can apply it to any spell as needed, but you’re limited to your dragon breath damage type, and there’s a higher resource cost.

Invigorating Spell (Paragon) [Breathcasting]

Prerequisite: Dragonborn, Wizard

Benefit: Once per encounter, you may sacrifice any unused encounter spell of 11th level or higher to regain one use of dragon breath. This is a free action.

Design Notes: This is one of those things which can be useful only rarely — but can be extremely potent when the situation is just right. Generally, an encounter spell will be more potent than dragon breath, but there are times when it can be handy — throwing away a cold spell in order to regain a fire breath attack, for example. Because, overall, you’re getting a less powerful attack for the cost of a more powerful one, I didn’t feel a healing surge cost was needed — that’s just adding insult to injury.

Fury Of The True Drake (Epic) [Breathcasting]

Prerequisite: Dragonborn, Wizard, any one other Breathcasting feat.

Benefit: If you have a remaining use of dragon breath in this encounter, as a minor and move action, you may expend it, and a healing surge, to produce one of the following effects on the next spell you cast. The effect must be chosen when the dragon breath is expended. You must cast the spell before the start of your next turn, or all benefits are lost.

  • Increase the area of a spell by 1 (Close Burst 2 becomes Close Burst 3)
  • Increase the range of a spell by 5.
  • Add +1 to each damage die.
  • Apply a -2 penalty to any saving throws against conditions the spell imposes.

Design Notes: OK, this is powerful and flexible, but, hell, it’s Epic! It also imposes a feat cost, and consumes both your minor and move actions for a round. As with all Breakfast Crunch, this has been as thoroughly playtested as anything written in one hour while chomping on frosted mini-wheats can be. 🙂 If this proves too potent, you may wish to limit it to only modifying Encounter powers. You may also note the "before the start of your next turn" mechanic, which is fairly unusual. I tossed that in after reviewing it for a bit — it seems that some wizards might want to set up an interrupt or reaction spell to be especially nasty, which is a good thing for a controller. So, you can cast a normal spell (standard action), burn your move and minor to, say, increase the range of Displacement or something. (Actually, Wizards currently have very few interrupt/reactions… but as written, this power allows the use of any "spell", so a multiclassed Wizard might be able to pull off some nifty stunts.)



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