Is chainlightning.png
Chain Lightning
Spell Information
Spell level : Innate level: 6, Sorcerer/Wizard: 6, Other: Air domain 6
School : Evocation
Descriptor(s) : Electricity
Components : Verbal and Somatic
Range : Long
Target/Area : Colossal, 1 target / level
Duration : Instantaneous
Save : Reflex 1/2
Spell resistance : Yes

Description[edit | edit source]

A bolt of electricity arcs through the caster's enemies for 1d6 points of electrical damage per caster level (up to a maximum of 20d6 points of damage) to the initial target and half that amount to all secondary targets. It can affect a maximum of number of creatures equal to the casters level.

The reflex save against damage is electricity based.

Bug Notes[edit | edit source]

General: In NW_S0_ChLightn it appears that all targets get the random damage of up to 20d6 damage, it is just divided by 2 at some point. This is a bit odd, and incorrect (according to the description and 3.5E spell) - it should do this for a level 20 caster:

  • Do 20d6 damage against the primary target. For example, we could assume we have a total roll of 60. The initial target may save against this, of course, which doesn't affect anything else.
  • Choose secondary targets. They get the initial damage we calculated (60) divided by 2, so 30 damage each, unless they save against the damage.

The main change would be to uncomment the lines at 133 to 142, so the damage is not redefined, and add a line with "nDamage /= 2;" somewhere around line 115, and remove the /2 on the line 146 (so the line becomes eDamage = EffectDamage(nDamStrike, DAMAGE_TYPE_ELECTRICAL); ).

Also; some casters might get annoyed that their single chain lightning can destroy an entire room (doors, chairs, chests...) in one casting, despite having lots of creatures in it, due to the objects not counting towards the limit. A better way to affect both creatures and objects, within the limits of 1 per caster level, is to have 2 loops. Simply do the first one for creatures only, and the second for placeable objects and doors.

Line 72 / 135: This doesn't make use of the much better NWN2 ApplyMetamagicVariableMods() function for metamagic empower/maximise.

Line 109: There is a bug in the amount of creatures affected code. nCnt defined as 0 on line 109 is not correct, since it should start at 1 due to the original target being affected - so in this case, the check of nCnt < nCasterLevel can run the full 20 times for a level 20 caster (meaning 20 targets and the original target equals 21 total), rather then the 19 times it should do.

Gameplay Notes[edit | edit source]

This spell will damage doors and placables which do not count against the limit of targets, so it will likely destroy a lot of loot in a room full of chests!

This is, however, an excellent damage spell which doesn't affect allies. Its selective targeting, despite the reflex save and half-damage to secondary targets (see bug notes above) is still pretty powerful. It can also be empowered to a level 9 spell for extra power.

The main use is its large area of effect, hopefully enough to disrupt casters and destroy many low level enemies. It is incredibly useful against electrically-weak enemies of course.

Do not think it is just a AOE spell however. Its full caster level x d6 damage for the primary target can make many creatures weep from a single shot alone - it is less damage then Disintegrate (Level 6 too, 2d6 damage a level or fortitude for 5d6 instead), however. Its strength lies in having a good primary target, and several secondary targets to get more damage against. Disregarding saves, the greater 2d6 damage from disintegrate is made up by hitting 3 targets with Chain Lightning.

Pure damage is rarely the key however. You will never instantly knock out well prepared enemies of equal challenge to you with this spell alone.

Since it is a high level spell, generally you might find people with Evasion and Improved Evasion to easily dodge the damage done by this spell. It is much more useful on low reflex-save based creatures.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.