Update: I’ve decided to alter the Base CrHe level of the spell and the spell complexity to better reflect the fact that the boat has a fair degree of complexity. Spell level is the same.
One of my characters had a need to get across a moderate sized area of water with his companions, and it proved to be a little bit of an ungainly problem. Initially I wanted to create a boat and row across using Creo. It would have almost worked, except that we needed a longer boat ride than either Concentration would reliably allow, or that Diameter could provide. In the end our arts were stronger when each person was slowly moved with Rego magic across the surface of the water. It was a solution, and I’d like something more elegant.
It got me thinking of the ways to create a boat on demand. Conceptually this could be:
- Create using Creo Herbam, or some other Form to suit the caster.
- Muto something into a boat, using an abundantly available material.
So here are the effects, using a range of Forms.
Conjure the Humble Skiff
Creo Herbam 25, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Ind
This spell conjures a small wooden boat, single sail, and running gear suitable for six travelers and their gear. The spell requires a finesse check to determine the quality of the boat*.
(Base 4, +1 Touch, +2 Sun, +1 increased target size for a modest boat, +1 complexity in the design and finished form)
* note: the degree of difficulty in that Finesse check is debatable. Set it wherever your troupe likes; I don’t want a can of worms based around a target number of 6 vs 9 vs 12.
But what about when “You’re gonna need a bigger boat.“ A large boat, say a boat which is large enough to comfortably cruise the open ocean would be another size increase of +1 mag, resulting in a CrHe level 20 effect – perhaps called the Conjure the Dawn Treader or the Merchant’s Dream. At that size the skiff becomes something with multiple sails, a full crew, and capable of hauling many hundreds of tons of cargo.
Shape the Boatman’s Skiff from Water
Muto Aquam / Herbam 20, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Ind
This spell transforms an area of water into a moderate sized wooden boat, with single sail, and running gear suitable for six travelers and their gear. The spell requires a finesse check to determine the quality of the boat.
(Base 4 to change a liquid into an unrelated solid or gas with requisite Herbam, +1 for larger result target size, +2 for finished Herbam product, R: Touch +1, D: Sun +2)
This and other custom spells for Ars Magica can be found on the new spells page.