In a spells post recently there were two spells for acquiring a boat. In that post I mentioned creating larger vessels. As a post here with those spells, and also a short discussion of the complexity in Creo effects and the difference in spell level for permanent vs non-permanent effects.
There is also no reason why the same spells below can’t be reworked for any wooden crafted item, such as buildings, carts, etc. Ships are simple in terms of being discrete things, but a variation could conjure almost anything.
Conjure the Merchant’s Dream
Creo Herbam / Terram 50, R: Touch, D: Moon, T: Ind
This spell temporarily creates a moderate sized wooden boat, one or two sails, oars, and running gear suitable for twenty travelers and their gear, and requiring a crew of four to operate properly. The ship will have a modest cargo hold and a few small cabins. The ships draft is designed to allow it to sit high on the water, so it may use rivers as well as oceans for travel. The spell requires a finesse check to determine the quality of the boat.
(Base 3, +2 treated and processed Herbam materials, +1 Touch, +3 Moon, +2 increased target size for a moderate boat, +2 complexity, +1 Terram)
The spell would certainly be lower level if placed into an item so that the item could maintain concentration. It also may be better for a Rego Vim spell to be cast to maintain concentration, and reduce the spell level down by 10 levels (+3 Moon becomes +1 Concentration, altering the level downward to CrHe/Te 40). Sure, that adds a requirement on a second high level spell, but it also saves the spell bordering on a ritual.
There is a larger ship, designed as a proper ritual.
Conjuration of the Dawn Treader
Creo Herbam / Terram 40, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Ind, Ritual
This spell permanently creates a large wooden boat, multiple sails, oars, and running gear suitable for fifty travelers and their gear, and requiring a crew of nine to operate properly. The ship will have a sizable cargo hold, multiple decks and internal cabins for crew and guests. The ship is not suitable for travel on small rivers, but may use larger ones. The spell requires a finesse check to determine the quality of the boat.
(Base 3, +2 treated and processed Herbam materials, +1 Touch, +3 increased target size for a large boat, +2 complexity, +1 Terram)
Interesting that the larger ship is a lower level spell due to the magnitudes of increased Duration in the temporary version, although the lower is a ritual so requires vis.
Conjuration of the Titan’s Barge of War
Creo Herbam / Terram 45, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Ind, Ritual
This spell conjures a permanent monumentally large ship, suitable for transporting incredible amounts of cargo or acting as a vehicle for war. The ship created is clearly unnatural and fearsome as no ship in history would be even close to this size.
The ship is outfitted for war, and contains defensive structures, armaments mounted along the hull, and also a large ram. It is designed with multiple sails, oars, and running gear suitable for its size, and smaller boats to use for short commutes.
Due to how large the ship is a crew will have to learn over many weeks to operate this ship properly. The ship’s draft is so deep than it cannot be docked in most ports. The spell requires a finesse check to determine the quality of the boat.
(Base 3, +2 treated and processed Herbam materials, +1 Touch, +4 increased target size for a large boat, +2 complexity, +1 Terram)
It is worth mentioning that an official Ars Magica product Hermetic Projects already has a ritual spell for conjuring a full ship, although it uses a Target of Structure in the book, which has then been errata’ed to Target: Individual. It also used a +3 complexity modifier which seems incredulously exorbitant. The reason (I think) such a high modifier was chosen was to reflect the “build” process of crafting a ship identically to a real ship. If the ritual forgoes the idea that the ship is perfectly constructed to manual methodology, then it can take simplifications in design and form, which in turn reduce the complexity of the spell. A +3 complexity modifier should be saved for spells like Conjuring the Mystic Tower, thus the spells here have been designed with a +2 complexity modifier (see a summary of complexity below).
Remember too that the spell has already “paid” for the spell to construct a treated and finished herbam product in the cost breakdown. That payment should already include the complexity of conjuring finished items instead of raw plants. The degree of complexity beyond this should be for items which have increasing ornate detail, many moving parts, stress points, and other plainly obvious or beautiful features which take significant thought and planning.
An explanation of my thoughts on relative complexity:
- Standard (+0 mags) – These items have little or no complexity in function or moving parts. e.g. Mounds of matter, swords, chairs, walls.
- Slightly Complex (+1 mags) – a few moving parts, and a few different materials. e.g. a Cart with tack and harness. A simple small boat. A building with a few uniform rooms and floors.
- Moderate Complexity (+2 mags) – many features which move independently from the whole, many compartments, or sub-functions. Many different materials. e.g. ocean going ships. A moderate sized building with multiple rooms, hallways, walk ways including doors and some features.
- Highly Complex (+3 mags) – Fully formed towers will inconsistent internal structures, with as many complex features as desired. Complex machinery. This is about as complex as a spell can get. e.g. Conjuring the Mystic Tower.