Here are some of the awesome set pieces and magical effects from A Song of Ice and Fire (a.k.a. Game of Thrones) written up as hermetic spells for Ars Magica. This particular post is all about “The Wall“.
The Wall is reported to be over 700 feet tall and is made of solid ice. It was supposedly constructed using both magic and mundane means some eight millennia ago, in the aftermath of the Long Night to defend the realm against the White Walkers who apparently dwell in the far north, though they are now considered myths by most.
Source: Game of Thrones Wiki
Aside – when your GM says “these creatures are thought to be a myth” you should expect to gear up to fight them; its a pen and paper rpg thing.
Creating the The Wall with hermetic magic is a bit of a problem, as it is mythical in proportions. According to the novels the Wall has roughly a length: 300 miles (!1584000 ft), height: 700 ft, and width: 300 ft, which is 332.64 billion cubic feet!
So in terms of a standard size Creo Aquam to create ice, which is I am guessing at around 560 cubic feet, it takes a very large ritual to cast. With some rough extrapolation on the way size and volumes increases for spells:
[ For Creo each +1 extra magnitude grants a volume multiplier of 10 times, … ]
A basic ritual for creating a permanent ice wall CrAu20 actually creates a very large volume of material. As such I’ve outlined a wall effect which is non-ritual & non-permanent, and then the rituals.
It mean that a ritual spell to create an ice barrier as large as the Wall is almost inconceivable in size. The ritual needs +9 additional magnitudes, ending in a ritual level of 65. And don’t forget that the damn thing will start to melt straight away. Here are some example spells ranging from a starting ritual to create a permanent ice wall suitable for tactical purposes, through to The Wall’s approximate size.
Ice Wall of the Warden
Creo Aquam 20, R: Voice, D: Diameter, T: Individual
This spell conjures a wall of ice in a simple shape and orientation chosen by the caster. The ritual will create 5600 cubic feet of ice; akin to a wall roughly 6 feet tall, 3 feet thick, and 300 feet long (roughly 90 yards); for the duration.
(Base 3 to create ice, +2 Voice, +1 Diameter, +1 unnatural shape, +1 size)
Ice Wall of the Defender
Creo Aquam 20, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Individual, Ritual
This spell conjures a set of barrier walls of ice in a complex shape and orientation chosen by the caster. The ritual will create 56,000 cubic feet of ice; akin to a wall roughly 15 feet tall, 10 feet thick, and 375 feet long (roughly 125 yards).
(Base 3 to create ice, +1 Touch, +1 unnatural shape, +1 complex patterns, +2 size, ritual)
Ice Wall of the Tactician
Creo Aquam 30, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Individual
This spell conjures a barrier wall of ice in a complex shape and orientation chosen by the caster. The ritual will create 56,000 cubic feet of ice; akin to a wall roughly10 feet tall, 8 feet thick, and 700 feet long (roughly 230 yards); for the duration.
(Base 3 to create ice, +1 Touch, +2 Sun, +1 unnatural shape, +1 complex patterns, +2 size)
Ice Wall of the Protector
Creo Aquam 50, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual, Ritual
This spell conjures a huge wall of ice in a complex shape and orientation chosen by the caster. The ritual will create 5.6 million cubic feet of ice; akin to a wall … … roughly 35 feet tall, 25 feet thick, and 6,400 feet long (approx 1.2 miles long).
(Base 3 to create ice, +2 Voice, +1 unnatural shape, +1 complex patterns, +7 size, ritual)
Creo Aquam 65, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Individual, Ritual
This spell conjures a mythically sized wall of ice in a shape and direction chosen by the caster. The ritual will create 560 billion cubic feet of ice; akin to a wall roughly 700 feet tall, 300 feet thick, and 2.66 million feet long (roughly 492 miles long).
The effect design allows for an exceedingly complex shape, which includes tunnels, walkways, battlements, rooms, and stairways throughout the complex, as desired.
(Base 3 to create ice, +1 Touch, +1 unnatural shape, +3 complex patterns, +9 size, ritual)
Then we need to know how to keep it from melting. What are the ancient magics used to sustain the wall for the last 800 years or so? Broadly speaking Hermetic magic can’t do this.
The closest Duration which might suit is the Faerie Until (Condition), which can last a very long time because it lasts until a specific complex condition is met, up to the death of the primary target or the caster (among other things). Now assuming the caster is sustained in some way for eons, then this might work. Another option is a new Duration with a particularly narrow set of controls which creates an improved version of Until. If so, that is a new and difficult original research topic.
The Eternal Barrier
Creo Aquam 65, R: Touch, D: Until, T: Individual, Ritual
This spell sustains the wall until the (my guess) army of the white walkers has destroyed the kingdoms of man (or the crippled kid becomes the new three eyed crow, or the old guy living for 800 years in a tree finally dies).
While in effect the wall will not melt or thaw, and will also remain unnaturally resistant to geological events.
(Base 3 to create ice, +1 Touch, +4 Until, +9 size, ritual)
Practically speaking both the Wall and a spell to sustain it would only be crafted by NPCs or as campaign events.
Find these and many more new spells for Ars Magica in my grimoire.