Sometimes, you come up with an idea for an article that just explodes out of all control. This has been the case for the last two days. I came up with what I thought was a simple idea for the latest in the 'Touch of Class' series of articles – the Elementalist. (So far, all of these have surprised me. The Illusionist by having about ten different versions coming out at the same time, the Puppeteer by being a far better NPC class than a PC class, and this one....)
The original concept for this class was a three-page article – one page detailing the class, and a few spells. It didn't quite work out that way, however. As I began to write the article, and delved into the ramifications of the class, it rapidly became apparent that I was biting off rather more than I expected. Simply putting the spell list together proved more of a trial than I had thought – very few of the spells I wanted were in Labyrinth Lord, and I decided a while ago that I would make OD&DITIES compliant with just Labyrinth Lord, with no other purchases required to use it. (Having said that, buy the Advanced Edition Companion. It is excellent. Nuff said.) This meant a lot more spells than I expected had to go into the article. Which has gone from three pages to six, with about thirty new spells included, some original, some modified from other SRD sources.
Then I went to the monsters. The 'big deal' of the Elementalist is the ability he has to summon Elemental creatures, but again it became rapidly obvious that this wasn't going to fly. All there were in the book were the four basic Elementals with three different power levels, all far too powerful to put into the hands of low-level characters. Which leads to a whole other article I will be writing tomorrow, bringing the Quasit into Labyrinth Lord. One spur of the moment idea has turned into two articles, constituting about a third of Issue 15 – and gave me an idea for another 'one-page' article along the lines of 'Unusual Enemies' into the bargain!
Hope everyone likes Elementalists....