Monday, April 16, 2012
This is one of those spells I always hear people refer to, but have rarely seen cast. Looking in Cook Expert, I was surprised to see its exact effects under those rules. It's not that it reduces a target's INT score, it "...makes a magic-user or elf unable to think or cast spells, becoming a helpless idiot." Also, "The spell will have no effect on creatures or character classes other than magic-users or elves." (emphasis mine)
This is a spell designed specifically to mess up fellow spellcasters.
While it is pretty cool to essentially nerf a big-bad-evil-nasty-wizard-type with one spell, he still gets a saving throw (albeit at -4!). Also, Dispel Magic gets rid of it, assuming anyone around the victim is able/willing to do it.
I could see really screwing with the PCs by hitting the party's mage with this, but once they are at the level where opponents are chucking 5th level spells at them, odds are good that there is a party cleric who can at least pray for Dispel Magic the next day. Of course, if it took a mage out of a "boss fight," it could really tip the scales.