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.


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.


A floating book, all a wizard needs

An item of fancy and indulgence for those Magi who insist on looking the part and being most prepared. It might also make a good justification for a lab improvement item with a focus on texts or reading. This is a similar function to the Bookstand of Hespera (Covenants, pg 121) except it affects just a book rather than a place to write and work. More purposeful for reference and study instead of creation. It will also cause warping in the target books over a long period.

Bookmark for a Text at Hand  (ReHeAn 25) is a small plate which is touched to the desired text and allows the text to float as the caster desires.

Ready an Attentive Tome

Rego Herbam / Animal 15, R: Touch, D: Concentration, T: Individual

The targeted book, scroll, or text floats next to the caster and can be set in position via concentration.

(Base 5, +1 Touch, +1 Concentration)

(+5 Device maintains concentration, +5 for 24 uses per day)

With a final device level of ReHeAn 25 the devices are still cheap enough to be crafted by more junior magi, and may well be used as lab texts for an inexpensive boost to labs. The bookstand from covenants “adds two points to a specialisation in texts“, and has a slightly higher baseline although lower final level. This device is designed to that it can be used to direct many books at once, each sustained by the bookmark and controlled by the user’s concentration. It makes sense that it would offer a similar bonus and also have a more diverse application than a singular bookstand.

Maintenance and Cleaning spells

Replacing the work based activities of servants and grogs with magic is interesting. It can be argued that it helps keep covenant costs or staff numbers down, but also that the vis spent is really wasted as it could be used for so much more (spend silver instead of vis). Simple work replacement devices can turn menial life of the Middle Ages into something akin to our lives in modern times.

These are work replacement spell effects, and some parts are based upon the enchanted devices such as the Abluere Magica (presented in Covenants sourcebook p 52), with parameters changed to affect larger volumes, add extra materials, or to provide more efficiency.

The spells also demonstrate changing the normal spell Target from Individual to Circle or Room.

Work of the Wooden Tub

Rego Herbam / Animal Terram 5, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Circle

Clothes and equipment within the circle are cleaned and laundered, as if cleaned by a skilled servant. A very simple Finesse check is required to ensure success (3+), otherwise damage maybe done, items missed, or remain soiled.

(Base 4, +1 Touch, +0 Circle)

Tidy Room of the Pedantic Servant 

Rego Herbam / Animal Terram 20, R: Touch, D: Momentary, T: Room

The room and all its contents are ordered, squared away, and stacked neatly, as if performed by a skilled servant. A basic Finesse check is required to ensure success (3+ to 6+), otherwise damage maybe done, items missed, or remain unordered.

(Base 4, +1 Touch, +2 Room, +1 complex materials)

Many hundred of new spells for Ars Magica can be found here.

A necromancy spell to animate a Graveyard

Here is a doozy of a spell for a necromancer – to raise an entire bound area such as a graveyard as servants of the caster.

Raise Their Ancestors to Haunt Them 

Rego Corpus / Mentem 45, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Boundary, Ritual

Each human corpse in the bound area is animated under the command of the caster. The corpses can obey simple instructions and perform rudimentary work without supervision. 

(Base 10, +1 Touch, +2 Sun, +4 Boundary, Mentem req free)

Spells using the Faerie Duration: Fire, p2

As part of the November A-Spell-A-Day challenge here is a few Duration: Fire Spells. The intent is a spell which splits its light away from the fire and places it over another thing. A lantern to light around somebody, or a brazier lighting a doorway. 

Fire of St Elmo

Rego Ignem 25, R: Voice, D: Fire, T: Individual, Faerie

The light from a fire source is spread upon an object within range, surrounding it with a halo equivalent to the size of the fire. The fire continues to consume its original fuel and heats normally.

(Base 4, +2 Voice, +3 Fire)

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

Spells using the Faerie Duration: Fire, p1

As part of the November A-Spell-A-Day challenge here is a few Duration: Fire Spells. This one may be useful for craftsmen or to direct the flow of a normal fire.

Direct the Heat of Fire

Rego Ignem 20, R: Voice, D: Fire, T: Individual, Faerie

The caster dictates an exact direction to focus the heat of the targeted fire. The fire itself does not move unless it is able to also expand by burning materials in the dictated direction. The caster may change the direction by concentrating.

(Base 3, +2 Voice, +3 Fire)

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