Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Revisiting the Concept of Magic

I am presenting the core magical concept again because I hope to go further soon with an example of a non player character from the campaign, probably a general magic user. I am not fully sure how to provide insight into an idea which is integrated into the campaign but I'll try something. The symbols for the kinds of magic user are new, I expect you can see what Ive done and how I can quickly create a representative symbol for as yet undetermined professions and that these might even be identifiable by a player with some thought. The third page is also new.

As an exercise, if you conceive of different pattern for the broad concept of priest, let's hear it. Or, what magical classes can you conceive of using the symbols? Warlock?



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2 comments:

  1. Priest- The odd element out in your arrangement appears to me to be "i". If one is going for a sort of PHB Catholic theurge, I would suggest swapping the i for 0 or 1:

    e Create Water, Bless,

    pi Protection from Evil, Sanctuary, Divination

    0 Hold Person, Command, Animate Dead, Slow Poison, Silence 15' Radius

    or

    1 Dispel Magic, Locate Object, Continual Light

    Do I have the sense of it? This assumes a sincere wielder of divine gifts. Most prelates of the church in my campaign are just Magic-Users, whether benign or corrupt.

    Phi might also be appropriate, as it pertains to "Dungeon Architecture & Physics"- I am thinking awe-inspiring cathedral architecture in the vein of the Temple of Prime Five. I am thinking broadly here using Phi's associations with the grand and wondrous rather than the particulars of your Ultramontane setting which are occluded from me.

    i seems Lovecraftian to me. What are "Aliens" in your setting?

    Warlock- 0.0.1. A worker of malicious unsubtle magicks who blasts his victims with fire and poison. Low Wisdom score- Foolhardy enough to venture into a demon's Bolgia during his rogue phase. A few such individuals would survive and return to wreak havoc on civilised lands. Damaging magic-user spells and reversed cleric spells.

    Do you divide up the spells in the PHB among these concepts, or do you invent your own spells or simply allow players free reign over magical powers within reason? Is casting "Vancian", i.e. fire-and-forget?

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  2. I appreciate your interest Mathias, it helps me get across the ideas.

    >>i seems Lovecraftian to me. What are "Aliens" in your setting?<<

    Lovecraft has little to no presence or influence on my setting. A core concept for 'i' is Mind & Perception of Reality.

    'Alien' here is a concept. So the shaman of a village by lake Nyangwe might consider explorers come from Zanzibar as 'alien'.

    >>Priest- The odd element out in your arrangement appears to me to be "i". If one is going for a sort of PHB Catholic theurge, I would suggest swapping the i for 0 or 1:<<

    While it was not a trick question, I did want to point out that such a broad concept as a Priest could not be captured with one combination of symbols. The most prominent representatives of priesthood in my campaign would most closely resemble ancient Egyptian priests, a far cry from Catholic priests.

    I would make a Christian priest either eei or iie but I see what you were thinking wanting to include a 0 or 1.

    Priests are generally those magic users who have competence dealing with undead. They do this through 'i'. Undead were the first endowed with psionics in my world so you see how the mechanics and campaign are necessarily integrated.

    As things stand right now, the symbol '0' has largely evil connotations and *does not* contain its conceptual opposites.

    >>0: Hold Person, Command, Animate Dead, Slow Poison, Silence 15' Radius<<
    >>1: Dispel Magic, Locate Object, Continual Light<<

    No, the symbols and concepts are abstract and are combined long before consideration of individual spells. The idea is to create spells specifically for each new class. They are fewer but more flexible in nature. And of course since Gygax did such a good job I won't reinvent the wheel, but each magic using class should feel different to his.

    The magic of an illusionist bears no relation to the magic of a sorceror or a priest.

    >>Is casting "Vancian", i.e. fire-and-forget?<<

    It depends on the class. It is such a great idea I want to retain it. I also want a portion of the 120 generalising classes to resemble the AD&D MU.

    >>Do you divide up the spells in the PHB among these concepts, or do you invent your own spells or simply allow players free reign over magical powers within reason?<<

    No it is easier to invent new spells at the pace they are required for player characters and npcs. This is a very important point. Also a good creative player is encouraged to contribute to his class, particularly if it is unique in the game, in the sense of not yet being developed for an npc.

    >>Warlock- 0.0.1. A worker of malicious unsubtle magicks who blasts his victims with fire and poison<<

    Dangerous..

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