This morning, I stared a thread where I roleplayed the arcanist Lunhed answering the community's questions. Here I have the results of that thread:
Lunhed: Arcana researcher here. Ask me a question about magic, and I'll answer it. (DnD 3.5 only, please)
Q: How to make a portal? You know, one way in, one way out
A: Apply force to create a bridge made of the boundary between planes. Quite routine, actually.
Q: Animate Dead requires a gem worth 25 gp per hit die of the dead creature. How does a wizard or sorcerer figure out how many hit dice the creature had? How can a gem be worth 25 gp, when it will be worth a different amount depending on the location in the world? What happens if I cast Magic Jar with the Chain Spell metamagic?
A: We look it up in a book. And we pick gems by weight and type. Gems are mostly valued for their magic. People only use gems for jewelry because they are so expensive. [Edit: I never answered his last question. A chained magic jar would fail due to having an illegal target]
Q: Ok, let's see how you deal with this (even if I'm pretty sure it gets more in fluff point of view than crunch...so DM fiat 'n stuff):
Let's presume that I've got a PC/NPC/whatever, that is able to cast the spell "Disguise Self", that is shorter than one feet (through shrink person, normal height, or whatever). Let's say, that with Change self, that person will decide to reduce his apparent height to 0,000001 inches/cm (it doesn't really matter). Is he effectively invisible at that point to human eye? What happens, if he's 9 inches tall, and wants to look 1 foot shorter?
A: A very good question. Yes, they would be effectively invisible for most purposes, although an especially keen eye could spot them. Anyone shorter that a foot could not reduce their apparent size to zero, but they could get as close as they would like.
Q: What spell could accurately depict the old, fairy tale "Turn into a frog until the prince kisses you" spell? Or would that fall under wish?
A: Greater Bestow Curse, I'd say. And permanency for good measure.
Q: Why do you think magic is so common recently? I could understand it being common for, say, castles, where an paranoid king may want protection from everything, but alot of the time, magic is displayed without cost beyond MP. Also, what do you think of the idea of Book Casting and alternative magics that need enchanted items and the ability to use them rather than learning magics yourself, such as Rune Casting and Enchanted Tomes?
A: Magic is becoming more accessible ever since they started those adept training courses. And while I feel that an understanding of magical principles are necessary to do it safely, an increase of the availability of magic will increase the standard of living and prevent undue suffering.
Q: Sorcerers and Wizards, I don't understand, though it may be for not having been in contact with it for a while, I thought that Sorcerers Shaped magic, while wizards used recipes, much like an comparison to picking a couple vegetables or hunting small prey and eating them to making an full hearty meal that is slightly hard to do, but certainly fulfilling. Am I missing something? Also, if true, does this mean that an sorcerer could POSSIBLY create an 'recipe', if not by accident?
A: Sorcerers practice magic through gut instinct, wizards through careful application of basic principles. They can both make new spells, but wizards can teach others how to do it.
Q: What classes and level are you?
A: Whisper Gnome Wizard 4 Archivist 3 Mystic Theurge 7 [This dialog is a little meta, but whatever]
Anon: You got hosed with whoever gave you advice on how to level. If you'd been my apprentice, I would have shown you how to get into Mystic Theurge two levels sooner!
Lunhed: I followed in my father's footsteps. Mother was always against it; she wanted me to go to artificer college like my brother.
Anon: Your mother was right. Your brother is most likely walking around in power armor with a super-gun, and you're at what? 6th level spells max? You could have been a contender!
Lunhed: He's gone. Dispater has him.
Anon: Who has him?
Lunhed: He sold his soul to the Iron Duke Dispater, Lord of the Second Layer of Baator in exchange for power. He took his soul immediately.
Q: You have been mocked several times for your build and your usage of class, but I would like to know, has it been worth it? Even after mocked by your mother, and loss of your brother, is the trail you blaze the path that you like?
A: Yes. I get to travel a lot, in order to train people in the ways of the adept and spread my faith. So many nomad communities have thanked me for helping them receive the knowledge they need to survive better in the wild. I've seen beautiful sunsets and wondrous landmarks. If I could live my life again, I wouldn't change anything
All in all, it was a good thread. I might do another one sometime. Amd please, I need your questions, so send them to DnDCheistry@gmail.com