Hermetic Recycling of Covenant Scrap, a sample magic items for Ars Magica

Goal in this blog post was to make an item which processes and separates substances into like types, and then allows them to reform as usable segments. Proposed as several “machine-like processes”, the first which separates different forms from one another, the second which separates substances within a form, and the third which removes a sub-type.

A tent was chosen to be portable and allow the magical effect to utilise Target: Room, and charms were used so they could be portable between tents and rooms – perhaps used in the same room or materials might be moved between them.

Effect: Charm of Separation of Four Types (Re Te / Mu He An Aq 40)

The small silver charm shaped as one pointed cross set within a circle, is pinned into place on the inside of the targeted room, and activated to separate materials into their art type. Some uses will see the charm displayed along side its brethren on handing strips. If present, the materials are sorted into barrels or shelves in each location.

Separation of Stone, Stakes, Solvent and Sinew

Rego Terram / Muto Herbam Animal Aquam 30, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Room

This effect alters the physical properties of all the affected materials to become malleable, allowing the base type of elements to be separated from each other toward the edges of the room. All materials in the room are separated according to their Hermetic Art type to the cardinal points in the room, with the remaining materials left in the centre.

(Base 4, +1 Touch, +2 Room, +1 Muto sub-effect, +2 affect processed and crafted materials, reqs free) 

(+10 Unlimited uses)

Then a charm for sub-division by Art type is needed. For simplicity, only one is presented here, assuming a similar level is needed with different requisites.

Effect: Charm of Separation of Within Terram (Re Te / Mu 40)

The small silver charm shaped as two pointed crosses overlapping at 45 degrees to make a starburst. If present, the materials are sorted into barrels or shelves in each location.

Separation of Steel, Stone, and Sand

Rego Terram / Muto 30, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Room

This effect alters the physical properties of all the affected materials to become malleable, allowing the base type of elements to be separated from each other toward the edge of the room. All Terram based materials in the room are separated according to the sub-type Hermetic Art type such as stone, steel, sand or clay, with any remaining materials aside.

(Base 4, +1 Touch, +2 Room, +1 Muto sub-effect, +2 affect processed and crafted materials, reqs free) 

(+10 Unlimited uses)

Then a clean-up spell to dispose of the unwanted matter.

Effect: Charm of Clean-up (PeTe/AnAqHeCo 35)

A small silver charm shaped as a circle with an x across its diamater, with a small hollow within the corss point of the X.

Disposal of the Unsorted Remains

Perdo Terram / Animal, Aquam, Auram, Herbam, Corpus 25, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Room

The non-living material placed in the centre of the targeted room are destroyed.

(Base 5, +2 Voice, +2 general materials)

(+10 Unlimited uses)

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Lost Spells (part 15) to destroy vis

More lost spells from sources around the web which are updated for 5e Ars Magica. This spell destroys pawns of vis. I have to ask why a caster would do this (demonically tainted vis perhaps?), however it seems a legitimate use for Perdo Vim.

Burning Vis

Perdo Vim General, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

Up to 1 pawn of Vis per 5 levels of this spell are destroyed.

(Base General, +2 Voice)

Over 650+ new spells for Ars Magica can be found here.

Ice Spells (part thirteen) Turn people to ice

When I first thought about this spell I was considering the part in the movie Frozen when Anna is turned to ice, and then considered making it a killing spell – which would be fair given a base level of 25 is very close to the Perdo Corpus instant death of base 30. Instead, an opponent frozen for two minutes is likely to be at the mercy of the caster till they magically unthaw.

Curse of the Frozen Heart

Muto Corpus / Aquam 40, R: Voice, D: Diameter, T: Individual

The target human is turned to solid ice, reverting to normal after the spell expires.

(Base 25, +2 Voice, +1 Diameter)

And a variant for animals, which is far easier due to the different baseline level for turning an animal into an inanimate object.

Curse of the Frozen Hoof

Muto Animal / Aquam 30, R: Voice, D: Diameter, T: Individual

The target animal is turned to solid ice, reverting to normal after the spell expires.

(Base 15, +2 Voice, +1 Diameter)

This and many other new spells for Ars Magica can be found on the Ars Magica New Spell Grimoire.

Vanilla Covenants Project – Asteria of Verditius

Asteria of Verditius – a sample Magus for the Vanilla Covenants Project

Asteria specializes in creating magical items out of bronze. Originally trained in Italy, she eventually moved to Cornwall. This is where the finest tin in the world is mined, and it allows her to create the finest bronze. Like most Verditius, she is incapable of enjoying the company of other members of her House, which also made the move to Stonehenge attractive. She drinks too much, and is very protective of her reputation, but beyond these minor foibles, she’s willing to discuss her work with the younger magi.

Asteria of Verditius, at Gauntlet

Characteristics: Int +3, Per 0, Pre 0, Com 0, Str -2, Sta +1, Dex +3, Qik 0
Size: 0, Age: 25 (25), Height: 168 cm, Weight: 72 kg, Gender: Female
Decrepitude: 0, Warping Score: 0 (0), Confidence: 1 (3)

Virtues and Flaws:

Affinity with Metalsmith (no calc), Affinity with Terram (no calc), Deft Form (Terram) [Form: Terram], The Gift, Hermetic Magus, Improved Characteristics, Inventive Genius (Invent Lab Totals: +3), Minor Magical Focus (Bronze), Personal Vis Source (Terram) [Location], Puissant Magic Theory, Puissant Metalsmith, Puissant Terram, Verditius Magic* [Preparation Abilities: Philosophiae/*Craft], Blatant Gift (Interactions: -6 with normals), Deficient Form (Imaginem), Deleterious Circumstances (Against wind), Hatred (Non productive artistic types), Mentor (Verdi upper heirachy), Weakness (Drinking)

*note: the no calc means that the affinity has not been factored into the final skill/art level.

Personality Traits: Disciplined +3, Perfectionist +3, Spontaneous -2

Abilities:

Artes Liberales 1 (geometry), Athletics 2 (Climbing), Awareness 3 (flaws in stone and metal work), Finesse 1, Italian 5 (talking about metal and stone), Latin 4 (Hermetic terms), Magic Lore 1, Magic Theory 3+2 (Terram), Metalsmith 4+2 (Bronze) [Category: Laboratories], Parma Magica 1 (Terram), Philosophiae 2 (Verdi Runes), Scribe 1, Stonemason 3 (Statues and Busts) [Category: Buildings]

Arts: Cr 5, In 2, Mu 5, Pe 3, Re 6, An 0, Aq 0, Au 0, Co 0, He 0, Ig 0, Im 0, Me 0, Te 10+3, Vi 0

Spells:

  • Bindings of Bronze from Robes of Silk (MuAn(Te) 15) +6.
  • Measurement of Metal (InTe 10) +16
  • The Bronze Dart (Mu(Re)Te 15) +24
  • A Window of Singular Direction (MuTe 15) +19
  • Hardness of Adamantine (MuTe 25) +19
  • The Spell of Worked Bronze (ReTe 5) +26.
  • Forge of Purest Bronze (ReTe 15) +26
  • Ominous Levitation of the Weighty Bar (ReTe 20) +20

Custom spells known:

Bindings of Bronze from Robes of Silk

Muto Animal 15, R: Voice, D: Diameter, T: Individual

This spell turns an item of Animal based clothing or equipment worn by the target into bronze (typically a shirt, robe, etc), thereby hampering movement, affecting function, and increasing load. Exact effects will vary according to the articles worn by the target, ranging from no effect to practically complete immobilization.

(Base 4 to change a animal product to metal, +2 Voice, +1 Diameter, +0 Terram)

The Bronze Dart

Muto Terram / Rego 15, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

A 10-inch bronze dart rises from the ground at your feet, floats into the air, and speeds off like an arrow at a target that is within Voice range. It does +10 damage, and always hits its target, although it must penetrate Magic Resistance to have any real effect.

(Base 3, +2 Voice, +1 affect metal, +1 Rego requisite)

Measurement of Metal

Intellego Terram 10, R: Touch. D: Momentary, T: Individual

This spell informs the caster of the purity and quality of an amount of metal.

(Base 5, +1 Touch)

The Spell of Worked Bronze

Rego Terram 25, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Group

The magus may transform a piece of bronze into a finished form, as if a Bronzeworker had shaped and formed it. Up to ten cubic feet may be transformed.

The magus must pass a Perception + Finesse roll substituting for Craft: Bronzeworker against an Ease Factor at least 3 higher than the mundane Ease Factor. Failure reduces the bronze to a slumped lump as if an incompetent beginner had worked on it.

(Base 2, +1 Touch, +2 metal, +2 Group, +1 flexibility, +1 size)

Forge of Purest Bronze

Rego Terram 20, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Group

This spell smelts and purifies up to ten cubic feet of bronze source materials. The pieces may be existing bronze work or raw copper, zinc, or lead bars. To achieve a suitable final result the caster must succeed a Finesse difficulty check of 12+. Appropriate craft skills may be add to this roll.

(Base 2, +1 Touch, +2 Group, +2 metal, +1 size)

Ominous Levitation of the Weighty Bar

Rego Terram 20, R: Voice, D: Concentration, T: Individual

As per Ominous Levitation of the Weighty Stone, HoH:S p38, but directs items made of metal.

(Base 3, +2 Voice, +1 Concentration, +2 affect metal)

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Blog Plans for 2018

I’ve no focus yet for 2018 for this rpg blog. The past few years of Ars Magica Spells has been challenging and while I’ll chip away at odd spells and items intermittently, I need a break from regular Ars Magica blog posts.

There is a long ignored Deathwatch story I might revive despite FFG handing back the publishing rights – and perhaps a bit of fiction. A lot of my inspiration for content is driven from games I’m playing in and the games are also slowing.

While I’m not sure what style of game to write about, the blog post publishing schedule will likely decrease to a post roughly each month.

Have a great 2018 folks. IBT.

Sample enchanted items for a crossbow

After finding this image I wanted to write up a magical auto-loader for a crossbow which makes firing each round possible. Crossbows are already interesting in Ars Magica because they inflict a lot of damage (with the optional rules) with not a lot of skill if already loaded (reduced botch dice), but they are darn slow.

With the two enchanted devices I think it is reasonable that a crossbow could be fired at least once per round, if not twice per round; as all the soldier is doing is pointing and pulling the trigger. Lords of Men indicates that shooting a preloaded crossbow is a quick action, meaning the user can fire and move or fire and do something else. With these enhancements they could fire twice – perhaps each enchanted device allows firing in one round, granting two shots per round if both are used.

And the bolts being fired will not be resisted by MR. Designing and placing these items on an arbalest would be brutal, and no harder magically.

Snipers Gleam (ReHe 20)

The gleam is matched pair of brass pins depicting crossed arrows, one is placed upon a crossbow and the other upon the container of ammunition. Each time the gleam is activated it moves a bolt from the container to the crossbow in a firing position. The power is activated by specific clicking tone of the crossbow being drawn back, or a command word.

Effect: Load the crossbow

Rego Herbam 10, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

A bolt is moved from a container to the crossbow or bow, loaded into a suitable firing position.

(Base 3, +2 Voice, +1 accuracy in positioning)(+10 unlimited uses)

Snipers Hold (ReTe 20)

The hold is a buckled leather band which is strapped to the soldier’s arm. The effect moves the crossbow’s metal bow after each firing, so that the holder does not need to act to redraw the bow, which saves significant time.

Effect: Draw the Crossbow

Rego Terram 10, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

The crossbow’s arm is drawn back and locked properly, ready for firing. Terram is added as a requisite to allow for different materials in the crossbow’s construction.

(Base 2, +2 for metals, +2 Voice) (+10 unlimited uses)

Note: updated with the feedback below.

e1e20ef0079e9a74e

Fast casting against another wizard in Ars Magica

One of those forum conversations that leads into a brief explanation of how the game mechanics resolve magic… The Mirror of Opposition spell reverses the effect of a spell, but not the target. So a spell to hurt a person might help them instead. It is a very interesting spell because it relies on so many of the meta-magic layers in Ars Magica, primarily around Muto Vim spells, but there are compounding questions in the details.

Pyrale wrote: Another question regarding spell manipulation : Supposing I see someone starts casting, and I decide to cast a mirror of opposition on his spell. Does my spell have to pierce the caster’s defenses ?

If not, do I have a window of opportunity if the spell has no time of travel, or can I only cast it on projectiles ?

My 2c which might be dodgy… I think you can cast it on anything, and the SG gets to decide what it does.

  • First you need to use the rules for identifying what Form the spell is, because Mirror of Opposition is different for each Form, but I guess you might know if the caster had previously been shooting away with missile spells and just assume you’re correct if your perception Check failed. The Perception check isn’t going to slow down the rest.
    … Perception + Awareness + roll vs. 15 – (effect mag). If the opposing caster has silent/subtle magic/deft magic it gets a lot harder.
  • Then if you are not cooperating with the other caster (fair assumption) you need to fast-cast the MoO:(form), as per p.159 of Ars about not being able to intercept the spell quickly enough. Its basically a -10 to casting roll with 2x extra botch dice, and you need the fast-cast Mastery option for the MoO spell.
  • Then your Penetration total for your casting roll (which includes that -10 mod) must beat the other caster’s Penetration total
    (i.e. spell CT + roll – Spell level + Pen ability vs same from the other guy).
  • The rules imply that you don’t need to penetrate the caster’s parma which is great, although if they were casting a spell with Range: Personal upon themselves I’d argue that you’d also need to penetrate their Parma for it to work too (?).
  • The caster must be in range of your MoO spell too (voice), unless you’ve got a funky version or using an Intangible Tunnel and an AC.
  • I don’t know what happens if they are fast-casting a mastered spell, but I think you still could fast cast to intercept and alter it (?).
  • You can’t alter Spont spells with MuVi which is a bugger but it makes sense why.

Easy! However…

  • If the first spell was fast-cast then the second magus can fast-cast one to defend/intercept, but it should come back to speed (point made here). Essentially the magic system seeks to avoid situations where magi just fast-cast-BLAST their way through all encounters.
  • As MoO and many other Muto Vim spells do not work against Spont magic, and also typically must penetrate against the target spell, and also usually only affect half their level, not many wizards are able to Spont cast Muto Vim spells in defence. It is possible, but very unlikely.

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