This question made me curious: How does a wizard/sorcerer (with or without prestige class (related to Wizard/sorcerer)) can cast Persistent Time Stop?

To my knowledge (assuming non-epic and no Deities & Demigods):

  • There is no sudden persistent spell feat
  • No metamagic Rod of persistent spell
  • I could had make it work with Incantrix+Easy Metamagic+Practical Metamagic (sorcerer)+ Arcane thesis (Time Stop) abuse with 2-3 +0 metamagic feats (invisible + 1-2 other) (but lots of DM don't accept this)
  • Divine Caster have it easy with Divine Metamagic (so no DMM please) and Bard 10/Sublime Chord 9 with Metamagic Song can also achieve that it seems
  • Cooperative Metamagic (Incantrix) can do it but, while in the time stop it would be impossible to do it again so this is not enough to satisfy me even though it works.

How can that be achieved using other methods? (I would like to know the cheapest way and other options and if the sorcerer have other options I'd like to know as well)

Wishing using the "greater effects"/Pun pun/Loops abuses etc. options are not acceptable as an answer for me.

3.0 material can be mentioned but separately please. Dragon/Dungeon Magazine can all be used; not 3rd-party content, though.

Even though it is correct, using a class such as Ur-priest+contemplative then taking a level a wizard just to be ''a wizard'' is not satisfactory. The question was more, how can a wizard (using his class feature/his spells/without using Divine Metamagic) can cast a persistent Time Stop?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Please refine your question criteria to prohibit Pun-Pun as a trivial answer. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2019 at 7:37
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    \$\begingroup\$ Must the caster be unassisted? Cooperative Metamagic (Incantrix) could do it. \$\endgroup\$
    – J. Mini
    Dec 20, 2019 at 12:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ If you allow Deities & Demigods, then Automatic Metamagic can do it. I can't see a DM allowing that book in a pre-Epic game, but it's a correct answer. As it's so off the wall however, I suspect that you'll want to edit your question and rule out being a god. \$\endgroup\$
    – J. Mini
    Dec 20, 2019 at 12:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ Cooperative metamagic could work, but not to do it while in the time stop itself, still that's a good answer for me. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Dec 23, 2019 at 15:38

4 Answers 4


Be an illumian wizard or sorcerer with NaenHoon Illumian Word

You still need to get Turn Undead attempts somehow to fuel your metamagic, but the thing is, your spell needn't be divine as with Divine Metamagic. So it actually comes from your wizard/sorcerer levels.

As for Turn Undead, you may just also be cleric 1, but you lose a level of spellcasting progression. There are prestige classes which also grant Turn Undead, but they come with prerequisites obviously. The easiest to my knowledge is sacred exorcist (Complete Divine, p. 56).

Is it the least resourse-intensive way to acomplish the goal?.. In some cases, probably. In every possible case? Definitely not.

This answer suggests the way, its autor assumes to be the most "simple" one.

Is character's race a valuable resource? Sure. On the other hand, some "builds" work regardless of race, or recieve only a minor bust from a "proper" race. In such a case, it becomes moderately valuable.

Are effective character levels used to make "a build" to work a valuable resource? Even more so... unless you start your compaign at effective character level 20, for example.

With that in mind, I answer from the perspective of least complexity for the player, because at least sometimes this approach will prove itself useful.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Sacred exorcist is very awesome! you can be a full wizard/sorcerer illumian with NaenHoon if you learn Dismissal + some background (good character) and extra turning feat if necessary. That is a very nice answer. I'll upvote it as soon as I can. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Dec 24, 2019 at 11:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ awesome! the only real drawback I could see, is that it replaces silverbrow human if you need dragonblood you're gonna need to waste another feat for it Dragontouched (11 cha) or Draconic Heritage (sorcerer level 1) but the advantage given by NaenHoon is worth a feat so it cancels the drawback if you really need/want the dragonblood subtype. (sorcerer with metamagic reducers could help reduce the need for more turn attempts) Sorcerer is more optimal because of the charisma stat. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Dec 25, 2019 at 7:16

A sorcerer or wizard can recharge an imbued staff

At level 5 the prestige class incantatrix (Player's Guide to Faerûn 61–3) gains the supernatural ability metamagic spell trigger that allows the incantatrix to expend charges from a spell-trigger magic item to cause the spell the item casts next to be cast as if it had been modified by one of the incantatrix's metamagic feats. The cost is +1 extra charge from the magic item per metamagic level increase of the feat—hence 6 extra charges are consumed from a magic item when the incantatrix applies the benefit of the feat Persistent Spell (Complete Arcane 81) to its spell. Unlike the feat Metamagic Spell Trigger (Complete Mage 45), the supernatural ability of the incantatrix does not say, "If the metamagic feat’s level adjustment would normally increase the slot of the chosen spell’s level above 9th, you can’t apply the metamagic effect to the spell."

A sorcerer or wizard that takes the alternative class feature imbued staff (Dragon #338 58–60) replaces her familiar with an increasingly magical quarterstaff. That imbued staff can be made magical as if it were a normal magic staff by paying a +20% premium. However, so far as I'm aware, there is no magic staff that contains the 9th-level Sor/Wiz spell time stop [trans] (Player's Handbook 294). This means that the incantatrix must create an original magic staff that does contain the time stop spell. Doing so is subject to DM oversight (see Variant: New Magic Items on Dungeon Master's Guide 214), but, in short, the core rules would have this be similar to researching original spells (198). Once research yields a staff of time stop—that, according to Creating Staffs (DMG 287), typically has a market price of 115,050 gp—the incantatrix and a caster that can cast the spell time stop (and maybe that possesses also the feat Craft Staff (PH 92)) can work together through the winter and a halfway through the spring to make the incantatrix's imbued staff into a staff of time stop. (Don't forget to increase its price by 20%! By the way, the assistant could instead be an allied creature that possesses the spell-like ability time stop (see this question), or—if she's unconcerned with the tremendous additional expense—the incantatrix could just create the staff of time stop from a pile of about 150 3,825-gp-each scrolls of time stop. Maybe she's already a participant in the wish economy?)

When the incantatrix that possesses the Craft Staff feat also possesses a caster level of 12, she meets the prerequisite for the feat Recharge Staff (Dragon #338 60–1). That feat's benefit allows her to expend 5 levels of spell slots to cause her imbued staff to gain 1 charge. For example, expending 1 1st-level slot and 1 4th-level slot causes her imbued staff to gain 1 charge. (The 50-charge maximum remains.)

Thus, the incantatrix can spend 1 charge from her imbued staff of time stop to cast the spell and 6 more charges to employ the supernatural ability metamagic spell trigger to cause that time stop spell to benefit from the metamagic feat Persistent Spell. Then, so she can do the same thing during her tomorrow without risk to her staff's charges, she can cause her staff to gain 7 charges by spending 35 spell levels of spell slots. (Thirty-five is a lot, but she has over 60.)

The only real difficulty is achieving this before level 15. Both the feats Craft Staff and Recharge Staff compete for the incantatrix's character level 12 slot. A transmuter 3/master specialist 2/incantatrix 5 that then takes her next two levels in transmuter could meet these goals, taking the feat Craft Staff as her wizard bonus feat at transmuter level 5 and also taking the feat Recharge Staff as her level-up feat at character level 12. (Or she can just artificially inflate her caster level—either constantly or right as she reaches feat-gaining character levels (e.g. increasing her caster level to 12 at character level 9)—to be able to take "early" the feats Craft Staff and Recharge Staff as caster level 12 is their only real prerequisite.)

Dead Ends

There are several ways this process just stops.

  • The DM rules that time stop can't be modified by Persistent Spell. The Dungeons & Dragons, Third Edition FAQ (June 2003) includes this exchange:

    Assuming you are high enough level to cast a persistent time stop spell, could you use the virtual 24 hours the spell lasts to rest and recover your spells?
    You can’t make time stop persistent. (Its duration is effectively instantaneous for purposes of the Persistent Spell feat.) (61)

    (I am unaware of this ruling's provenance. Also, FAQ issues.) So the DM may wish to follow this advice. However, the DM should keep in mind that this advice is for Third Edition, and while Third Edition material that hasn't been updated for 3.5 remains game legal for the 3.5 revision (see Why a Revision? (DMG 4)), the time stop spell is updated by the 3.5 revision's own Player's Handbook—that could've seen the duration of spell time stop changed to instantaneous, but it didn't. That is, that the FAQ's suggestion was ignored by those doing the 3.5 revision may give the DM pause before ruling this way.

  • The DM disapproves of the staff of time stop. If the DM says that a new magic item this basic can't be created, it's likely that no new magic items can be created. (And, while it is a variant to allow new magic items at all, if the DM's campaign introduction didn't mention an outright ban on new magic items, I'd be irked.) However, I can imagine a house rule like New magic items can't employ 9th-level spells if the DM were trying to maintain an air of mystery around the ring of three wishes (DMG 233) (97.950 gp; 0 lbs.) or whatever.
  • The PC can't get enough gp for the staff of time stop. It's no small investment to create a staff of time stop. Raw materials for the staff cost 57,375 gp plus 300 gp for the masterwork quarterstaff. (The DM may waive this last because the incantatrix already has one.) Yet a level 12 PC typically has 88,000 gp at her disposal, so the staff of time stop is only most of it. (And only a small loan puts the raw materials cost of a staff of time stop within reach of even a level 10 PC.)
  • The PC can't access a time stop effect to create the staff of time stop. No one should be so incurious as to help another create a staff of time stop. It would take a peculiarly long and particularly strong con to get a dude or monster that can employ time stop once per day to employ that on the incantatrix's behalf while they spend the 8 hours a day for nearly 5 months making her imbued staff into a staff of time stop. That, however, may be the adventure.

Note: The Player's Handbook on Spellcasting and Services says that one can just pay 1,530 gp for a wizard 17 to cast time stop. However, according to the Dungeon Master's Guide on Community Modifiers and Highest-level Locals (139), default towns never contain a wizard higher than level 16. A metropolis may have a cleric who is as high as level 18, and several domains make available the spell time stop like the Player's Handbook domain trickery (189), but the Dungeon Master's Guide puts the chance of a randomly rolled town being a metropolis at only a 1% (137). Really, it's easier to find a Wiz17 during play (and in Faerûn!) than it is using the core rules.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Why are there so many level concerns here? For example, the staff-making process can be simplified by reaching a level where you can cast Time Stop and then casting it yourself. If the DM rules against you being able to find a copy of the spell, then you can just take another level of Wizard and have Time Stop appear in your spellbook as part of the leveling. \$\endgroup\$
    – J. Mini
    Dec 20, 2019 at 17:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ @J.Mini because the question is to do it cheapest. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2019 at 17:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Pleasestopbeingevil Ah, then this is an issue with the question. Casting it yourself is cheaper by gold (particularly if you're an Archmage and can cast it as a spell-like), but it's not cheaper by level. \$\endgroup\$
    – J. Mini
    Dec 20, 2019 at 17:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ @J.Mini gold is cheap (you can make it), level is expensive. I agree the question needs work, among other things it needs to put up better material boundaries because the correct answer currently is still Pun-Pun. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2019 at 17:26
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    \$\begingroup\$ @J.Mini PSBE's nailed it. That is, I read least resource-intensive as essentially doing it at the lowest possible character level because levels are a character's most valuable resource. I'm not sure trying to do this from an actual gp standpoint is productive: as PSBE also mentions, gp can be trivialized even with core. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2019 at 17:28

The easiest way is to be something else that can cast it easily, then take a level of wizard.

Start as an Ur-Priest 10, per KRyan’s answer here. Take extend spell, persistent spell, divine metamagic, and extra turning (or have 16+ charisma). Max out knowledge(religion). Find a way to “have direct contact with an enlightened being embodying the highest principles of an alignment” (maybe take the lichloved feat?)

Take a level of Contemplative. For your domain, pick celerity or time (each of which has Time Stop as a domain spell).

Take a level of wizard.

You are now at 12th level and are a wizard who can cast persistent time stop.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Even though it is correct, the level of wizard is taken just to answer the question, the wizard class feature/spells are not used, so that's the Ur-Priest/contemplative. When I said with or without prestige class I meant, a prestige class that used the wizard/sorcerer spell progression but oh well it is a cheap way. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Dec 24, 2019 at 10:31

Answers are in order from best to worst, by your criterion that they be minimally resource-intensive.

Pun-Pun -- ECL 1

Start as a kobold wizard in Toril. Buy a scroll of Shapechange (you can get the money lots of ways, though they will all take time but not levels). Ascend. You can now cast persistent time stop if you feel like it.

If time is an issue, start as a kobold paladin in Toril. Ascend. After you are done giving yourself Alter Reality, arbitrarily many actions per round, etc, take a level in wizard.

If both don't work, you can go the Divine Minion 1 (actually a LA+1 template)/Wizard 1/Master of Many Forms 3 route, which has the advantage of already having a level in wizard when we ascend, and of not relying on anything even the very least bit controversial.

Fast Casting with a level in Wizard -- ECL 10

The Alternative Source Spell feat or similar may qualify your spellcasting classes as arcane and divine, depending on how that works. That would let you advance Wizard and Beholder Mage with Mystic Theurge. A Wizard 1/Beholder Mage 1 with a high-HD race and Alternative Source Spell who then takes a level of Mystic Theurge before reincarnating can thereafter level up Mystic Theurge without issue, advancing both Wizard and Beholder Mage casting. This gets access to Time Stop at Wizard 1/Beholder Mage 1/Mystic Theurge 8.

A 10th level character has 4 feats, but we need more. We can take two flaws or be a human with one flaw to get the extra feats we need. We take Alternative Source Spell, Extend Spell, Persist Spell, God-Touched, Divine Channeling, and Divine Metamagic.

We then load up on nightsticks and proceed as per usual.

Incantatrix staff abuse plus a level of Wizard -- ECL 12

See https://rpg.stackexchange.com/a/161688/14848

Essentially, we use the metamagic spell-trigger ability of an incantatrix with a staff of time stop to get a persisted time stop, then use the Recharge Staff feat and a lot of spell slots to get the charges back.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Last I checked, the quickest/most reliable method of Pun-Pun ascension actually started from a wizard base, so you don’t have to level up. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Dec 20, 2019 at 19:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ I somehow failed to notice: Metamagic Spell Trigger on the incantrix spell feature, that did help thank you, but answer such as pun-pun are not good enough. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Dec 20, 2019 at 23:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MaximeCuillerier ECL one isn't fast enough? Fair enough, I'll see if I can't figure out a way to get ECL zero \$\endgroup\$ Dec 21, 2019 at 2:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ It will never be accepted in play I meant, loops abuse etc. are not acceptable for me. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Dec 23, 2019 at 15:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MaximeCuillerier dang it, man, I'm like two drafts into my ECL -25 answer! You've got to put that kind of thing in the question! \$\endgroup\$ Dec 23, 2019 at 23:50

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