A few Ars Magica cantations

The Apprentices source book introduces a type of spell specifically for beginning wizards known as Cantations. These are low level spell effects. A few occurred to me while I considered effects useful in daily life.

Discover the Peace of Thunder, Wind, and Rain

Creo Imagonem 4, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Individual

This spell creates the sound of thunder, wind, and rain at the location touched, equivalent volume to a speaking person.

(Base 1, +1 Touch, +2 Sun)

Discover the Melody of the Absent Minstrel

Creo Imagonem 5, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Individual

This spell creates the sound of music, equivalent volume to a speaking person. The style and instruments are chosen when cast, and quality is dependent on a finesse check.

(Base 1, +1 Touch, +2 Sun, +1 clear music)

And a simple prank which I could see an apprentice using.

Discover the Disquiet of the Obtrusive Tone

Creo Imagonem 4, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Individual

This spell creates a simple sound infrequently over the spell’s duration. The caster determines the sound to be created (dripping water, chirp of a bird, a cat’s meow, a cough) and the interval between the occurrences when the spell is cast. In typical use a drip of water sounds every diameter for the spell’s duration.

(Base 1, +1 Touch, +2 Sun)

Further unsurprisingly many useful effects are already in the core rules. This effect is a re-work of Calm the Motion of the Heart (Ars p150) to only affect the caster.

Calm the Motion of My Heart

Perdo Mentem 5, R: Personal, D: Mom, T: Individual

Removes one emotion from the caster until it reoccurs again naturally.

(Base 5)

It seems the type of effect that could be cheaply added to an item to allow somebody to artificially deal with an anger problem, or many other issues which arise from misplaced or forlorn passion.


Samples of Sound Spells

A little while ago I proposed a set of spell guidelines for Imagonem magic involving sound, and participated in a robust debate on the Ars Magica forums. This post is a follow-up as sample spells using those guidelines. This is perhaps to demonstrate the leverage from Imagonem as more than just visual images, and also to demonstrate the relative power levels to other spell effects.

Shatter the Bon Vivant’s Glass

Creo Imagonem 10, R: Voice, D: Momentary, T: Individual

The caster creates a short high pitched burst of sound next to a glass item, which is shattered by the sound. The caster must succeed a Finesse check vs base 6 to correctly target the sound. The sound created is very loud.

(Base 3 to break glass with Finesse check 6+, range to Voice +3)

This is a simple spell to shatter an item made from glass, without targeting the glass itself with magic. The Finesse should be modified by other conditions, however the base has been chosen as the area of effect of noise is large enough so that the spell should be easy to target in non-complicated situations. Continue reading

Using sound magic to deafen, damage, or shatter glass

Sound magic is something that is rare in most magic systems. DnD had/has a few odd effects for silencing and thunderclaps, but overall it is left to the domain of bards and the like. Likewise in Ars Magica were “sound” is an aspect of manipulating the image or illusion of an object, and it does not have any special treatments or focus in the rules. The sound it creates is treated just the same as the image it projects, or how it feels.

I think it is interesting to consider how else sound might be used in Ars magica so that it becomes a more versatile aspect of the magic system. The effects that would be hardy are sonic booms, very loud distractions, sound pitch that can shatter glass, and then sound so intense that it can cause harm. Continue reading