Conjure the Watchman’s Tower

A few spells to transform the air into a sturdy dwelling or a temporary tent, using Muto, for the Ars Magica rpg.

Shape the Watchman’s Tower from Air

battlementMuto Auram / Terram 40, R: Touch, D: Moon, T: Ind

This spell transforms the surrounding air into a sturdy two room tower formed from a single piece of stone.

The complexity in the spell allows for solid study construction, a heavily weighted base, doors and doorways, internal stairs, a battlement on top, a hearth and chimney, arrow slits in the walls, and benches and blocks to act as furniture throughout.

While it is not luxurious, the dwelling is far superior to sleeping in the elements. In the original design the tower’s lower room was larger than the upper, as the tower smoothly plinthed upward. A Finesse check is required when the spell is cast to determine the degree of success in the transformation.

(Base 4 to transform into another element with requisite Terram, +2 for larger result size, +1 for stone, +1 moderate complexity in components and shape, R: Touch +1, D: Moon +3)

When I first thought about creating the effect I incorrectly assumed that it would be easy, and was looking for a final level around 15 or 20. Once the variations for the complexity and stone were incorporated it didn’t seem too much of an extension to create it as a level 35 effect, and allow the watchtowers to stand for Moon duration.

Scaling for size with stone Terram effects really only starts to get powerful at the upper end of spell levels. This spell isn’t suitable for redesign as a permanent spell with vis due to the higher base it must start with. As such it demonstrates well how Muto is useful but certainly no substitute for Creo spells.

A simple version isn’t really viable once the stone is needed, as almost any side building cannot be created without an increase in size magnitudes as well. As an alternative a different spell might be used by traveling wizards who wish to have a less ostentatious overnight dwelling, and by using materials better suited to hiding in natural environments.

Shape the Leafy Tent

Muto Auram / Herbam 25, R: Touch, D: Sun, T: Ind

This spell transforms the surrounding air into a simple tent made from natural plants. The space is well protected from wind and rain, and features a raised floor to keep equipment dry. The tent is large enough to sleep four travelers and gear. From casual inspection the outside of the tent appears much like a large bush.

(Base 5, R: Touch +1, D: Sun +2, +1 for larger result size)


The explanation for Shape the Watchman’s Tower from Air, difficulty calculation is:

  • Base effect for Auram is a single phenomenon, up to 100 paces across. Would appear to be plenty. My reasoning is that a mtuo spell which converted a stone tower to air would create a fair volume of air, but not a huge storm worth. So that same about of air is needed transforming the other way.
  • R:Touch is enough as a spell can effect an entire Target as long as a part of it is touched. i.e. you don’t need to touch all of a man to affect them.
  • Base effect for Terram is 10 cubic paces of dirt, which is not enough so a +1 mag grants up to 100 cubic paces of earth. Then a further +1 mag to have a similar amount of stone.
  • Convert the dirt base to stone, which is a +1 mag modifier.
  • This is enough earth for a two rectangular rooms with walls 4 paces wide by 3 paces high, and half a pace thick (6 c.p each surface x 6 surfaces for the first room + 5 surfaces for the second = 66 c.p). Then add some reenforcing to the walls, a small battlement on top, and miscellaneous internal features.
  • More complex than a bridge or wall (which do not have complexity modifiers in the rulebook)┬ábut not ornate or as expansive as a wizard’s tower.

For Shape the Leafy Tent the main difference was:

  • A smaller increase in material needed, and no herbam special increase for a finished product.
  • However I did not feel that the Base 4 MuHe guideline would apply, as it mentioned the elements specifically, and I think Herbam is slightly more complex that the elements, as it is a living substance.

This and other custom spells for Ars Magica can be found on the new spells page.