'Magic Missile' Variants

Michael O. Varhola

Following are three Magic Missile variants — Magic Missile Burst , Magic Missile (Incendiary) , and Magic Missile (Sundering) — that I created for use in the Skirmisher Publishing LLC playtest game and which have been used by a number of its official characters. All are relatively low level and can enhance the magical arsenals of casters from 3rd level onward, but two of them are also scalable, giving them utility through the very highest levels. 

Magic Missile Burst
Evocation [Force]
Level: Sor/Wiz 2, Chaos 2
Components: V, S
Casting Time:  1 standard action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Target: Up to eight creatures
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw:  None
Spell Resistance:  Yes

This spell causes eight missiles of magical energy to burst forth from the caster's hand in opposing directions, one directly into each square adjacent to his own (i.e., at 45 degree angles to each other). Each missile will move in a straight line either until it strikes a creature, dealing 1d4+1 points of force damage, or reaches the limit of its range and dissipates. If multiple targets are somehow in a single square then there is an equal chance that any one of them will be struck. Beyond working within the above parameters, the caster cannot specify which targets will be struck, and friendly creatures within the area of effect — other than the caster — might be hit.

A single missile can strike only one creature and multiple missiles cannot hit a creature unless it occupies more than one of the squares affected by the spell.

As with normal magic missiles, these bolts strike unerringly, even if the targets are in melee combat or have less than total cover or total concealment. Specific parts of a creature can’t be singled out and inanimate objects are not damaged by the spell. 

Magic Missile (Incendiary)
Evocation [Force, Fire]
Level: Sor/Wiz 2
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time:  1 standard action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Targets: Up to five creatures, no two of which can be more than 15 ft. apart
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw:  None
Spell Resistance:  Yes

Two missiles of magical energy dart forth from your hand, dealing 1d4+1 points of force damage, plus an additional 3 points of fire damage to whatever they hit. For every two caster levels beyond 3rd, the caster gains an additional missile — three at 5th, four at 7th, five at 9th, and a maximum of six missiles at 11th level and higher. 

The missiles strikes unerringly, even if the target is in melee combat or has less than total cover or total concealment. Specific parts of a creature can’t be singled out. Unlike regular  Magic Missiles , inanimate objects can be targeted by this spell but suffer only the fire damage inflicted by it (which may, of course, ignite them). 

A caster can have her missiles strike a single creature or object or several of them; a single missile can strike only one target. The caster must designate targets before checking for spell resistance or rolling damage. 

Arcane Material Component:  A bit of pitch. 

Magic Missile (Sundering)
Evocation [Force]
Level: