Transformation into Shadows and Ghosts

Transforming into a shadowy form for isn’t straight forward in Ars Magica, not because it’s overly complex, but because there are a few ways it can be done. That said, its a seriously impressive thematic effect and might have advantages in-play.

The spell effects to do this starts with a Muto Corpus base level 30 because it is closely related to becoming insubstantial, then is modified to suit the Form best related to shadow – which is a bit of a discussion topic as shadows are affected by both Ignem and Imagonem circumstantially, although Ignem typically only to remove them. I’d say the transformation effect from another form is firmly within the domain of Imagonem. I mention this as Hermetically transformed creatures are still affected by their base form, then any form which is appropriate under the paradigm. So an Imagonem based transformation might be affected (subject to circumstances) by all Corpus as normal, Creo Ignem, and all Imagonem spells.

Flint_OdysseusInHades

The paradigm for images and light used in Ars Magica has a base in species rather than modern physics (which quickly gets very confusing), that dictate that Creo Ignem can assist in destroying a shadow, and Imagonem can directly affect it.

Aside – It is also possible to have a shadow-like effect using Auram depending on the results that the caster wants (See the spells Cloak of Mist and Transform to Water, see Ars p.131) such as a vampiric inspired transformation to mist or smoke. These effects have the minor benefit of not being subject to Creo Ignem effects as much, however they are not a true shadow-form and they bring their own limitations in terms of being subservient to the whims of their new shape.

As basic effect, a transformation to shadow using Imagonem might be written as:

Form of the Erebus’ Servant

Muto Corpus 45 / Imagonem, R: Personal, D: Sun, T: Individual

The caster is transformed into a shadow of themselves. They can no longer physically interact with the physical world, but instead can pass under and through the narrowest spaces, and move very quickly across the ground. This makes the shadow immune to physical damage, but highly susceptible to bright light and magical bursts of light may cause pain or damage. A small mirror is held by the caster and is dropped to remove the effect prematurely.

Like all transformation effects, some gear and equipment may not be transformed, or casting requisites may be required for some equipment; subject to troupe rules.

(Base 30, +1 controlled movement, +2 Sun)

The base effect is related to a referenced rule for MuCo with Au for a smoky ghost (TMRE pg. 68 calls “allowing the Magus to take ghostly form” MuCo/Au 30). An additional magnitude was added to allow the caster to control the direction of their movement, rather than being subject to the whims of light and darkness in the environment around them.

Lastly a variation into a spirit or umbra transformation – into an incorporeal ghost-like form using Mentem, which might also render the target invisible because ghosts are rarely visible unless under the effects of spells and powers to allow them to coalesce.

Form of the Shade of Hades

Muto Corpus 45 / Mentem, R: Personal, D: Sun, T: Individual

The caster is transformed into a spirit-like creature, unnatural and incorporeal. The caster can still be seen, but appears as a ghostly version of their normal self. This ghost like form cannot interact with the physical world except for basic movement, and may float in a ghost-like manner through solid objects.

While transformed the caster can still speak and be heard normally, although the voice takes upon ethereal features, and the caster does not need to breathe. A token inscribed with a human skull is held during the spell casting, which can be dropped to end the effect prematurely.

(Base 30, +1 controlled movement, +2 Sun)

SciFi.Fantasy.DarkWizard.DarkWizard2.jpg.rZd.137640

See further custom spells for Ars Magica can be found in the summary spells page.

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