Changing Wolves to Rabbits, or Lions to Lambs

Previously wrote a transformation spell called “Transformation of the Vicious Beast to the Floundering Fish” to make a beast into a fish, as an attack to quickly kill a beast or allow it to swim, and I was thinking of casting against normal animals and moderately powerful magical beasts. However one of my Magi in a play-by-post game is fighting a magical beast and doesn’t want to outright kill it. Here is an alterative which is designed to be lower level, and also shorter duration – more as an intimidation tool.

Transformation of the Vicious Beast to the Humble Hare

Muto Animal 20, R: Touch, D: Diameter, T: Individual

The targeted animal up to size +3 is turned into a rabbit. A rabbit pelt may be held by the target and dropped to end the spell prematurely.

(Base 5, +1 Touch, +1 Diameter, +1 additional size in target)

This spell is part of the free new spells compendium for Ars Magica.


Stacking Intangible Tunnels variants


A great idea came out of the Ars Forums recently for meta-magic spell stacking using variations of Opening the Intangible Tunnel (Ars Magica, MuVi, p). The idea is to first establish a connection using a lower level version, which has flexibility (like using R: sight), and then cast another which is optimised at a higher level with restricted range: Touch.

It’s a neat trick, and well within the rules.

Milestone 700+ New spells for Ars Magica

The blog has 701 spells in total now – and that is about as many as I intended in ever drafting, so anymore will be far more staggered apart as time permits. Hope they are useful in your games.

A few Lava spells for Ars Magica

Due to a discussion on the Ars forums I drafted some lava based spells for Ars Magica. The spells are a little rough, as I’m unfamiliar with lava as part of the Terram Form. It is worth noting that creating lava is Creo Terram, however making it any hotter requires Ignem to assist as a requisite (see Hermetic Projects p.12 for more details on lava in Ars). Base 5 CrTe is 1 cubic foot of lava, which flows very slowly, and inflicts +15 damage (see Hermetic Projects p.14).

Please note – Lava as written at Base 5 inflicting +15 damage is exceedingly powerful. This is better than CrIg Base 5 (+10 damage), and should be pondered seriously by players before being used. As noted in the comments below it is a little broken in terms of game balance, but I cannot (yet) find an explanation which contradicts the book references.

Ball of Burning Lava

Creo Terram 15, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

A ball of lava covers a small area within range. This inflicts +15 damage to items and people splashed by the lava. This spell creates 1 cubic foot ball of lava.

(Base 5, +2 Voice)

Spray of Fluid Lava

Creo Terram / Aquam 20, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

A liquified spray of lava covers a small area within range. This inflicts +15 damage to items and people splashed by the lava. This spell creates 10 cubic feet of lava which burns then disapates. Aquam requisite allows the lava to flow more freely.

(Base 5, +2 Voice, +1 Size, Aquam free)

Shroud of Immolating Lava

Creo Terram 30, R: Voice, D: Diameter, T: Individual

This spell creates a blanket of lava 100 cubic feet in size, which remains for the spells duration, inflicting +15 damage each round.

(Base 5, +2 Voice, +1 Diameter, +2 Size)

Cast of Molten Lava

Creo Terram 35, R: Sight, D: Concentration, T: Individual

For as long as you concentrate a jet of lava springs from your outstretched hand, covering an area within range with 5 cubic feet of lava each round. This inflicts +15 damage to items and people splashed by the lava, +20 for those partially covered, and up to +60 damage for anyone fully enveloped by the stream. Over the duration this spell creates a maximum of 100 cubic feet of lava, enough to cover people or the side of a building. The lava disappears when the caster ceases concentrating.

(Base 5, +3 Sight, Voice, +1 Concentration, +2 size)

Erruption of Molten Lava

Creo Terram / Ignem 40, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

A massive erruption of lava is created within the target area, inflicting +25 damage to items and people affected by the lava, +30 for those partially covered, and up to +70 damage for anyone fully enveloped by the stream. This spell creates a cube of lava up to 1000 cubic feet, enough to envelop a small building.

(Base 5, +2 Voice, +3 size, +2 inflicts +10 extra damage, Ignem Req)

This spell is part of the free new spells compendium for Ars Magica.

Enchanted Device: Paper Armour (stolen)

A neat idea lifted from Sea of Stars is a Paper Charm that gives the target better armour (that’s armor for you North American folks) by Sean Holland. In the example the AC is improved moderately, which implies the effect is overall shielding the target from harm; a form of damage reduction in non-DND speak.

The priestess walked slowly down the line of nervous villagers, each clutching a simple tool that they hoped to use as an effective weapon. Stopping in front of each, she placed a charm against each villagers chest and in a second, they were clad in white paper armor.  While the protection the charms gave was limited, it gave the villagers hope that they would be able to stand against those who would harm their homes and families.

These paper charm are marked with the symbols for protection and safety.  When the command words (or prayers) are spoken and the charm is placed on a person, it unfolds into a suit of paper armor to protect them for a short time.

The armor has no weight and causes no penalties, it lasts for three hours and then dissolves into a handful of shredded paper.

Here is the same effect written up as a device with charges (in effect a temporary magic device) for Ars Magica. Paper warrior from Kubo and the Two Strings
Continue reading

A question on Character Wealth and Equipment

I had a go at answering a new player question on Starting Character Wealth and Equipment in Ars Magica games on Rpg.StackExchange.

In Ars Magica, 5th edition, there seems to be no indication at all of the equipment and resources a character can have. There is just a note reading that any equipment is OK if you can justify it.

How many initial vis can be that in 5th edition? Books? Also how many swords or arcs for a companion or grog?

The short version is to write down the gear and possessions which seem thematic and reasonable for the character’s story and haggle for specific or tricky things; that said there is a huge difference between magical and non-magical related gear and resources as all magical resources are controlled by Virtues and Flaws.

If you’re interested have a read at

Strange item – Wand of Cleaning

Inspired from a strange Atlas Games Ars Magica forum post, here is a Wand of Steam cleaning. Breakdown was:

  • CrAu base of 5 for slightly unnatural effect.
  • Rego sub-effect for the removal.
  • +1 Touch, Mom, Ind,
  • maybe +1 mag for the cleaning of an entire unspecified thing
  • Also requires a finesse check to use, botches might wreck the material.
  • It might also scold but do no real damage (perhaps +0 damage roll).

Wand of Steam Cleaning – (CrAu/Re25) a hardwood wand twisted by the warping effects of water and time, which is enchanted to activate when run across a targeted person or item of clothing.

Steamed to Perfection

Creo Auram / Rego 15, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Individual

The targeted item is steamed in a particular manner which removes all the dirt and muck from the item. Metals are cleaned and materials freshened. A Finesse check of 6+ is required to ensure the steaming is effective, and botched may indicate the damage. If used against a living target the steam inflicts +0 damage. The caster is protected from damage by the rego requisite.

(Base 5, +1 Touch, +1 for complex motion)

(As an enchanted wand: +10 unlimited uses)

Find the other enchanted devices for Ars.