Carpet of Flame
Level: wiz/sorc 4
Components: V,S, M
Casting Time: 1 Standard Action
Range: Close (25 ft. + 5 ft. per 2/levels)
Area: 5' per 2/levels (see text)
Duration:1 round per level
Saving throw: Ref partial (see text)
Spell resistance: yes
This spell calls into being a carpet of fire that covers an area of the ground and burns to a height of 8 inches. Anyone standing or moving through the the area is allowed a reflex save for half damage per round. The spell does 1d4 points fire damage per level of the caster. The caster can choose which areas of the ground to cover, in any pattern, as long as all 5' squares chosen are adjacent to another square which is on fire because of this spell. The material compenent of this spell is a pinch of tar and sulphur.
After examining a spell with a similar effect (Spike Stones), I came to the conclusion that this would probably make a good third level spell.
Spike Stones has a longer range, a much larger area, a much longer duration, the potential to deal more damage, the bonus of acting like a trap (hard to find), the potential to lower movement rate, and is fourth level.
Heck, for comparison here is Spike Stones:
Level: Drd 4, Earth 4 Components: V, S, DF Casting Time: 1 standard action Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level) Area: One 20-ft. square/level Duration: 1 hour/level (D) Saving Throw: Reflex partial Spell Resistance: Yes
Rocky ground, stone floors, and similar surfaces shape themselves into long, sharp points that blend into the background.
Spike stones impede progress through an area and deal damage. Any creature moving on foot into or through the spellís area moves at half speed.
In addition, each creature moving through the area takes 1d8 points of piercing damage for each 5 feet of movement through the spiked area.
Any creature that takes damage from this spell must also succeed on a Reflex save to avoid injuries to its feet and legs. A failed save causes the creatureís speed to be reduced to half normal for 24 hours or until the injured creature receives a cure spell (which also restores lost hit points). Another character can remove the penalty by taking 10 minutes to dress the injuries and succeeding on a Heal check against the spellís save DC.
Spike stones is a magic trap that canít be disabled with the Disable Device skill.
Note: Magic traps such as spike stones are hard to detect. A rogue (only) can use the Search skill to find spike stones. The DC is 25 + spell level, or DC 29 for spike stones.
I think that makes a pretty good case for reducing Carpet of Flame to 3rd level.
I really should look at the date before I open my big mouth. Giving a critique more than a year after something has been submitted seems obtuse in retrospect...