1: How do y'all feel about save-or-'die' effects? (These are permanent or nearly-permanent creature stoppers, like flesh to stone, phantasmal killer, and wail of the banshee. Some are just long-term debuffs that last for minutes or hours after the fight.) I like them, but I want to be able to get proper wards for them. (Making counterspelling easier also helps.)
Fine, as long as it doesn't lead to tanky character being far too fragile (and thus not tanks).
2: How do y'all feel about permanent and long-term minions, such as from animate dead and planar binding? They make the game far more interesting for me, but need set limits.
As a rule, they shouldn't be nearly as strong as players. Zombies and such are basically fine, but stuff like Animate Dread Warrior that can make minions nearly as good as PCs are a problem. There should be costs associated, though.
3: How do y'all feel about world remodeling spells? I emphasize stone shape, wall of stone, and fabricate, though true creation and genesis are on the top end.
For the most part, I think these should be Permanent, not Instantaneous, so they can be dispelled and there's good reason to build things the old fashioned way. You could also make an Exp cost to make it undispellable. Of course, I also think crafting should be MUCH faster. If a level 10 Fighter can battle dragons and a level 10 Rogue can disappear almost to invisibility, why shouldn't a level 10 craftsman create amazing masterpieces very quickly? I like the house rule that your crafting rate is based on ranks in the skill... you can craft up to (Ranks Squared) * DC in sp in stuff per day. Thus, someone making DC 10 objects with 4 ranks can make 16gp worth of stuff per day, while someone with 10 ranks making DC 20 stuff can make 200gp in stuff per day. Because why shouldn't a super expert craftsman bust out masterwork plate in a week or so? Why shouldn't a serious PC crafter at high levels (15 ranks, perhaps) knock out 4500gp of stuff in a day? He'd be level 12, after all. That alone would make Fabricate less crazy by comparison (especially if you could dispel the changes). If you do this, there should be cheaply available magic items for determining if an item is just a permanent enchantment.
1: Remove infinite and nearly infinite loops. I hate having to state this rule every time I ask for build help or for build competitions. For example, minions generally can't make permanent minions. Planar binding has restrictions on what abilities called creatures can use.
Minion making works as long as you can only control a limited amount. If your shadow creates spawn and you don't have enough space for the spawn, the spawn is not controlled. That solves a lot. Wish loops need to be restricted heavily, certainly. But yes, infinite loops in general need to go.
2: There should be ample time, level-wise, to get defenses for otherwise hard-to-counter abilities. See freedom of movement and black tentacles.
Yes, but then again, we don't want to turn this into rock paper scissors. There shouldn't be one attack where you MUST have that one defense, nor should one defense make you completely immune to a category of attacks. Resistant, sure, but not immune. Stuff like Mindblank and Freedom of Movement are problematic.
3: Spells that make permanent minions and resources need their costs tweaked. Planar binding
should (and does in my rewrites) have a limit to the number of creatures you can control at a time. Explosive runes
needs a duration or damage other than "Stack Me." Illusory script
? Seriously, what
Yes, Planar Binding needs a lot of work.
4: Spells that grant extra actions are extremely restricted. No celerity - any of the series. Just no. Time stop can stay @9, but probably needs tweaking to make it a set 2 or 3 rounds instead of Maximize and Empower Me.
Eh, Time Stop is so high level that I'm not sure I care. I agree, Celerity needs to not work that way.
5: Counterspelling should be easier. In my rewrites, it will be.
Yes, and maybe doable by more than just casters. Heck, consider making a new class similar to Beguilers, Dread Necromancers, and Warmages that's an abjuration specialist Gish who has a bunch of antimagic and defense abilities... could be fun.
6: Cost-benefit analysis. Some core abilities I've never used. I only noticed them as I was flipping through spells. Some abilities need their durations increased to dissuade people from trying to find every way to make them last longer than they should.
Yeah, though I care less about the weak stuff than the strong stuff.
7: This is more of a system thing, but initiative has too many ways of being boosted. I'm fine with many DEX boosters, a Luckstone, the maneuver Moment of Alacrity, and a lesser version of moment of prescience.
8: Another system thing: Non-casters get too few options compared to casters. (Even Tome of Battle classes get a small number of spiffy class features and instead rely on maneuvers and stances to keep things interesting.) When your best class features are "hit" and "hit harder," something's amiss. (This too is changing.)
Yes, but don't make everything too complex.