There are a few important changes to spellcasting.
o Spells do not "plainly" fail anymore (except for orcs in the sun).
Either you succeed, or you backfire.
o The mana used during spellcasting has a random component, which
decreases if you learn the spell very well. Exhausting mana during
spellcasting results in a backfire.
o Casting a spell that is very near your level has a high chance of
o When you start casting, you will be warned if the risk of backfire is
higher than normal: you will receive the message "You muster all of your
concentration..." instead of "You start to concentrate..."
o *** The effects of a spell improve the higher you practice it. ***
This is true even of spells like enchant, sanctuary and heal, which used to
have a fixed effect. Putting only a few practices on a spell means casting
it at a lower effective level, with lesser effects and higher mana cost.
Hard to learn, high-level spells may require many practice sessions before
you can even attempt to use them.
o Casting now takes an optional <effort> parameter. You can cast a spell
more slowly but with greater effects, or quickly but with a higher chance
of backfire. The syntax is:
cast <effort> 'spell' [target]
where <effort> can be, like in search and flush:
quick - casting time, + mana used, - spell power, + backfire
normal minimize mana usage; average casting time, power, backfire
thorough + casting time, + mana used, + spell power, - backfire
o By default, casting without an "effort" parameter is equivalent to
"cast normal". You can however "change spellcasting" to choose a new
o The mana cost you see on your practice list --
Skill / Spell Knowledge Difficulty Class Mana Casting time
Control weather Fair Hard Mage 25, Short
-- is the *average* mana cost for casting the spell with normal effort. This
average cost might be higher than your maximum mana; this doesn't mean that
you will be unable to cast the spell, only that you have a high chance of it