You owe allegiance to no man, aye, but a demon or god may hold sway upon your soul. You are a tight-lipped warlock studying ancient tomes, a witch corrupted by black magic, a demonologist trading soul-slivers for secrets, or an enchanter muttering chants in lost tongues. You are one of many foul mortals clutching at power. Will you succeed? Low-level wizards are indeed very powerful, but high-level wizards fear for their souls. Wizards control magic. At least, they attempt to. Mortal magic is unpredictable and wild but powerful. Unlike clerics whose faithful service is rewarded with divine powers, wizards wield magic through mastery and dominance of forces in which they are not always voluntary participants. Wizards are sometimes trained in combat, but are rarely a match for warriors or clerics in a clash of worldly weapons.
Hit points: A wizard gains 1d4 hit points at each level.
Weapon training: A wizard is trained in the use of the dagger, longbow, longsword, shortbow, short sword, and staff. Wizards rarely wear armor, as it hinders spellcasting.
Alignment: Wizards pursue magical arts according to their natural inclinations. Chaotic wizards study black magic. Neutral or lawful wizards seek control over elements. Wizards of all persuasions practice enchantment.
Caster level: Caster level is a measurement of a wizard’s power in channeling a spell’s energy. A wizard’s caster level is usually his level as a wizard. For example, a 2nd-level wizard usually has a caster level of 2.
Magic: Magic is unknown, dangerous, and inhuman. Even the best wizards occasionally fail to properly harness a spell, with unpredictable results. Wizards thus inculcate their preferred magics, lest they err in casting a spell and corrupt themselves with misdirected magical energies. At 1st level a wizard determines 4 spells that he knows, representing years of study and practice. As his comprehension expands, a wizard may learn more spells of progressively higher levels. A wizard knows a number of spells as shown on table 1-12, modified by his Intelligence score.
Known spells are determined randomly (see Chapter 5: Magic). They may be of any level for which the wizard is eligible, as shown by the max spell level column. The wizard chooses the level before making his die roll. Higher-level spells are more powerful but harder to cast – and there are consequences for failure.
Wizards cast spells by making a spell check. A wizard’s spell check is usually 1d20 + Intelligence modifier + caster level. In some cases, a wizard may roll a different die on the spell check (see Mercurial Magic).
Supernatural patrons: Wizards weave magic spells in consultation with powers from supernatural places and the outer planes. Demons and devils, angels, celestials, ghosts, outsiders, daevas, genies, elementals, Chaos Lords, spirits, elder gods, alien intelligences, and concepts foreign to mortal comprehension whisper secrets in exchange for favors best left unexplained. In everyday concourse, these secrets manifest as spells; in dire circumstances, the wizard can invoke one of his patrons directly and call for material assistance. This sort of request is called invoking a patron.
To invoke a patron, the wizard must spellburn at least 1 point of an ability score (see page 107) and cast the spell invoke patron. There may be additional requirements depending on the specific circumstances. Presuming the patron condescends to attend to the wizard, some negotiation may be required: a bauble exchanged, a secret name spoken, a sacrificial token burned, or maybe a quest performed. If the patron deigns to act, it sends an emissary to assist the wizard in the way the patron deems most appropriate.
Invoking a patron is powerful magic. Do not use it lightly.
Some common patrons include the following: • Bobugbubilz, demon lord of amphibians • Azi Dahaka, demon prince of storms and waste • The King of Elfland, fey ruler of the lands beyond twilight • Sezrekan the Elder, the wickedest of sorcerers • The Three Fates, who control the fate of all men and gods to see that the world reaches its destiny • Yddgrrl, the World Root • Obitu-Que, Lord of the Five, pit fiend and balor • Ithha, prince of elemental wind
Familiars: More than one wizard has found comfort in the company of a black cat, hissing snake, or clay homunculus. A wizard may utilize the spell find familiar to obtain such a partner.
Luck: A wizard’s Luck modifier applies to rolls for corruption (see page 116) and mercurial magic (see page 111).
Languages: A wizard knows two additional languages for every point of Int modifier, as described in Appendix L.