Killing an animal, 30 Days of Magic

Lost spell from an old 4e grimoire to kill a beast, two versions reworked for 5th edition Ars Magica. I dislike how many of the core Ars spells don’t have allowances for larger creatures which means they are no use against horses and other big foes.

The Incap version at PeAn35 seems a better choice. I also modified the spell as written from size +1 animals to allow affecting large animals too, up to size +4.

Incantation of the Beast’s Ruin

Perdo Animal 35, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

This spells inflicts an Incapacitating wound to an animal, up to size +4.

(Base 20, +2 Voice, +1 size)

Incantation of the Pack’s Ruin

Perdo Animal 40, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Group

This spells inflicts an Incapacitating wound to a group of animals, up to size +1. Designed with wolf packs in mind, this spell will kill a group of 10x size +1 animals.

(Base 20, +2 Voice, +2 Group)

Incantation of the Beast’s Demise

Perdo Animal 45, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

This spells kill an animal of up to size +4 instantly.

(Base 30, +2 Voice, +1 size)

These spells are part of the free new spells compendium for Ars Magica.

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A few spells to Illustrate an Intangible Tunnel, 30 Days of Magic

These spells demonstrate remakes of Opening the Intangible Tunnel (ReVi Gen, ArM, p.162) to instead include a visual representation of the tunnel which makes using one far easier for other Magi. There is also a variation on OtIT for Group targets.

Aside – I wasn’t sure if these spells needed either (a) a method to detect the tunnels within the spell, or (b) can actually create a visual guide for an intangible thing. I’m sure that Imaginem does not need a requisite for the material it is changing or creating an image upon, as there are many sample spells which do this in Ars RAW and none use requisites for the spells. That said the consensus in the official Ars Magica forums indicated that without requisites the spells just wouldn’t work. Ah well.

Opening the Illustrated Tunnel

Rego Vim / Imaginem Gen, R: Arcane Connection, D: Concentration, T: Individual

This spell opens a magical tunnel between the caster and the target (identical to the spell Opening the Intangible Tunnel) except the the caster’s endpoint of the tunnel is clearly visually represented as a swirling vortex styled by the casters sigil.

Spells cast through this tunnel must be at least one magnitude less than the level of this spell.

(Base Gen, +4 Arc, +1 Conc, +1 Im sub effect)

The spell below is used to allow others to target the end of a detected Intangible Tunnel style spell, for better cooperation between Magi. It could also use R:Touch to make the spell easier to learn and cast.

Illustrating the Intangible Tunnel

Creo Imaginem / Vim 10, R: Voice, D: Sun, T: Individual

This spell creates a visual representation upon an Intangible Tunnel. The caster must already be aware of the particular endpoint of the tunnel to create this illusion, either discovered by another means, or because they were the caster of the tunnel spell. The Vim requisite anchors the illusion to the tunnel.

Typically the tunnel illustration is visually styled from the casters sigil, or rarely this spell designed to be presented to another sense.

(Base 1, +1 Moves with the tunnel’s endpoint, +2 Voice, +2 Sun)

These spells are part of the free new spells compendium for Ars Magica.

Few more minor spells from magical items, 30 Days of Magic

I wrote up more low level items were created as part of the “apprentice level items” thread, which means there are a few more low level effects to write up as new spells too.

Cloak of Gloom and Shadow

Light surrounding the caster is reduced to near darkness, becoming deeply dark, gloomy, and shadowy for two to three paces around them, then lightening gradually to five or six paces.

Perdo Ignem 16 (Base 2, +1 Touch, +2 Sun, +1 Individual, +1 modifier for an unusual Target) 

Uncontrolled Tantrum

Rego Terram 10, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Room

When cast the room and all items inside are thrown a few paces away from the activator. Their movement will not inflict damage, but may damage the room and its contents. Requisites are needed if non-terram items are to be included.

(Base 3, +1 Touch, +2 Room)

These spells are part of the New Spell Compendium for Ars Magica.

Subtle artwork of Dr Strange in the Sanctum Sanctorum

Vanilla Covenants Project – Asteria of Verditius

Continuing the ad-hoc Ars Magica character creation for the Vanilla Covenants Project – community sourced set of examples of beginning covenants for the Ars Magica RPG setting.

Asteria of Verditius

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.

Stats 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, Affinity with Terram, Deft Form (Terram), The Gift, Hermetic Magus, Improved Characteristics, Inventive Genius (Invent Lab Totals: +3), Minor Magical Focus (Bronze), Personal Vis Source (Terram), 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)

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)

Continue reading

Ritual for Conjuring a Magical Wyrm

And then a mystical wyrm to demonstrate what other types of beasties might be possible.

Conjure the Mythical Wyrm

Creo Animal / Mentem Auram Vim 75, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Individual, Ritual

A magical drake is created with 11 Magic Might, +7 size, and a selection of powers such as fire-breathing, fire-immunity, and supernatural toughness. The magical beast is permanent and intelligent. The creature will have a personality and traits of its own and will initially serve the caster in a loyal manner.

(Base 50, +1 Touch, Mentem for intellect, Ignem / Auram for powers and resistance to fire, +2 size increase, +1 Rego for loyalty to caster, +1 Might increase)

Find this spell and hundreds more for Ars Magica in my grimoire.

Ritual for Conjuring a Magical Wolf

These next are two spells which indicate the complexity required for Hermetic magic in Ars Magica to create permanent magical creatures, as proposed through a discussion. This is not based upon a RAW guideline, rather some very logical forum discussions.

It’s worth noting that creating a normal wolf permanently is far easier; both these spells create creatures which could exist in the setting. If used in a saga I suggest that each spell become far more specific in terms of beast description, demeanor, and powers. A creature of the magic realm they should be closer to the idealised forms of their animal types.

Conjure the Majestic Wolf

Creo Animal 55, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Individual, Ritual

An adult wolf is created with 10 Magic Might and a small selection of powers, such as supernatural stealth and resilience. The magical beast is permanent and may have  Cunning or Intelligence. The creature will have a personality and traits of its own and is under no obligation to serve the caster.

(Base 50, +1 Touch)

This idea came from the Atlas Ars Magica forums thread:

If we look at the ‘Conjure the Walking Dead’ Ritual Spell from Hermetic Projects (Pg 117), it explains that the base level for creating a magical human is level 45; coincidentally the magical might of the revenant (pg 116) is 9; a simple ruling could be made that the magnitude of the spell is the amount of Magical Might that the creature would have.

Base level 50 for magical animal would make a magical might 10 creature, with +1 magnitude for +1 Magical Might

i.e a magical might 15 lion would be: Creo-Animal 80 ritual
(base 50, +1 Touch, +5 for higher might) with requisites for the powers that the lion has, Imaginum/Aurum for a super loud roar etc.

Find this spell and hundreds more for Ars Magica in my grimoire.

Setting: Mythic Heresy?

One of the topics that cycles regularly over the years is doing an Ars Magics game without player character wizards. Magi (and covenants) are a huge focus of the game, so removing that element really starts to become – what are you seeking play? 

The setting material as quasi-historic, perhaps a long precursor game to the introduction of wizards, or a feel for life around the Order of Hermes but not within it. It could be interesting and there are certainly other games about which do similar things. 

It reminds me of the Fantasy Flight Games for Death Watch when compared to playing “normal people”. The Space Marines are so pivotal in their fluff stories and so overpowered compared to regular humans that there is no real middle ground. And yet FFG have a darn successful set of RPGs set specifically at various power levels. Sure the player characters are not space marines, but they might be inquisitors, rogue traders, or darn tough mercenaries. 

So why can’t Ars Magica do this too?

Setting: Mythic Heresy – a tip of the hat to the Dark Heresy rpg where the players are members of an inquisition investigation team seeking to uncover the truth of various mythic legends and stories. 

Some quick thoughts:

  • Finding magic, or any other supernatural force might be a discovery in the setting. Or magic could all be gumpf, or all the work of the devil. 
  • It could get dark quickly. Especially if real work horrors are used as inspiration. i.e. The Cathars.  
  • Playing along side the magi or having to confront a magi should be the ultimate story event if it’s going to happen. Much like finally seeing an eldritch horror in a Call of Cthulhu game. If fact CoC probably has some delights to offer which are readily transportable. 
  • Not having magic might make players design diverse characters?
  • Should the players build a team of investigators or mix it up?