The art of Magic & Prayers
Magic TypesThere are 2 types of magic, elemental and god given. Although these types may produce similar results they are in no other way related. The power for all spells comes from the planes in the heavens, different planes provide different powers
Before we can discuss the powers and types of magic we first need to get a grounding of how the multiverse is made up.
The planes of existence
Thus we can see that the prime material plane where the characters dwell is actually part of the elemental planes. These planes comprise the four basic elements at the periphary surrounding the demi-material planes of dust, smoke, shadow and dozens of others which in turn surrounds the prime material plane. Following the logic it can be seen that the prime material plane is in fact simply a mish mash of all the elemental planes put together. No one elemental plane dominates the prime material, creatures which inhabit the other planes often find it relatively easy to slip betweeen the boundaries in to the adjacent planes.
The planes of heaven and hell exist in another dimension to the elemental planes which is why the priestly and elemental magic do not co-exist. In the diagram power for a character can only flow vertically or horizantally between the planes but not both.
Surrounding the planes are the ethereal and astral planes. They have a 1:1 relationship with the other planes, all points existing in all the planes however travel is at different speeds.
It is possible to see from the Ethereal to the Prime plane but not normally vice versa. In the ethereal you may travel in any direction as there is no ground. Equivalent prime material plane speed is (10 + intelligence) mph. Speed of travel is controlled by thought. Unconscious characters may be carried at normal speed but if they are awake their thinking brain controls their maximum speed.
The astral plane may contain structures of its own and is compressed in space compared to the prime material plane. Equivalent prime material plane speed is 10 x (10 + intelligence)mph.
PriestsPriests cast their spells by invoking the will of their god or other extra-planar creature as is their whim. Priests are able to cast their spells as long as they are not cut off from their god. their power comes from the planes of heaven and hell which can be reached with equal ease from any of the material planes. The problems come only when the priest is further removed from their gods plane than normal. The further down into the abyss a priest travels the less the power of the gods from the upper planes and the greater the power of the gods from the lower planes.
Elemental / Old magicElemental magic belongs to wizards and the creatures of the elemental and demi-elemental planes, including those that choose to reside on the prime material plane. This includes creatures such as dragons, mephits...
These can perform their powers anywhere on the elemental planes. They employ their powers by direct manipulation of the elemental forces and channelling the forces from their home plane.
Wizards have more problem than priests when travelling towards heaven or hell as their powers are designed to work within the elemental planes and not pass the boundaries in the vertical direction. Rather than preventing the mage casting the more powerful magics however (as happens to priests) it reduces the level of spell available to him.
Casting Spells and Prayers
Spells and prayers do not have a skill roll when casting but one of the spells attributes will have a variable.
This is the roll the wizard/priest makes which represents the variability of the cast.
It is asumed that the character has a base INT/WIS of 1 (or they wouldn't be that class);
Each each additional INT/WIS above one allows the caster to reroll any one die keeping the new result. It may be necessaryto make a seperate skill check to determine if a cast can be made at all, thus casting on a galloping horse would require a riding check or you are being bounced around too much at the vital moment.
A hero point will give the caster additional dice, one die for every two dice they would normally roll (minimum 1).
Thus 3d6 damage become 4d6 damage, but 4d8 becomes 6d8 damage. For spells/prayers where the variable is a saving throw an extra d4 is rolled) thus 13+d4 (14-17) becomes 13 +2d4 (15-21).
Skill modifiers for difficult or easy conditions give a bonus to the roll total. Each complete +1 bonus/negative adds/subtracts one pip for each two dice rolled. Thus a "Chant" granting +2 to a 3d6 roll becomes 3d6+2.
Power NeedsSpell casting creatures cast spells by using up power points (PP). Any spell a character knows may be cast provided the requisite power points are available. The higher the level of the spell the greater the number of power points required.
|Spell / Prayer
Against non-damaging spells or prayers the default saving throw is:
6 + Arcane Knowledge/Faith
+ INT/WIS + d4
Against damaging spells or prayers the d4 is assumed to have rolled a 2 so it becomes
8 + Arcane Knowledge/Faith
The AK / Faith is the level of the caster not of the spell/prayer.
High level casters can simply disrupt low level spells in a given speciality. Spells cast at 3 or more levels below the mages ability (in each speciality) simply do not affect them: They can wave them away. Some monsters also have this ability.
Some spells require the caster to perform a melee spell attack. This is made using the:
Arcane Knowledge/faith level + INT/WILL vs defence
Parry/dodge/ranged whichever is normally used. As these attacks require a to hit roll they do not normally get a saving throw.
Boosting an ally in combat whether by healing or providing protection requires a melee attack but at advantage as they are not deliberately trying to avoid you but still need to dodge to avoid the enemy (shields are ignored).
Many spells/prayers have a standard range which increases as your level increases. This is shown as Range = Std in the spell lists. Some spells show Std x 2 or similar or even a specific range.
Arcane knowlwedge / Faith Level x 10'
Spell casting is difficult at the best of times, requiring intense concentration to phrase the words and complete the somatics correctly. These problems are bad enough when standing still in silence on a solid floor: attempting to perform spells in combat where the din of battle pounds your ears, the horse your sitting on refuses to stay still and the next spear is likely to be directed at you is almost impossible. Fortunately heroes take these things in their stride (you are a hero aren't you)
If in direct melee it is impossible to cast a spell that takes more than 2 segments to perform. Longer than this and that spear will have an intimate knowledge of your entrails.
These are the general type and require a major action to perform.
Battle spells are minor actions, they are designed to be very quick and easy so they may be cast in a addition to a major action except if the main action is also casting as they will still drain power leaving the caster feeling empty. Thus you may strike with a weapon, perform an acrobatic leap and still cast. They are an adjunct to you main action so are cast immediately before or after your main action (Everyone doesn't get to cast a battle spell on the 1st segment as that is just silly).
These require a minor action but may cast instantly when a given effect has occurred. They may even be cast if you have already used your minor action that round; in this case they use the minor action from the next round instead.
They will remove any ongoing concentration effect.
These take a significant amount of time (minutes, hours or even days) and cannot be performed in combat at all.
- Hero points. One hero point may be used as one power point.
- Body disfunction. For each extra power point or part of, of their maximum normal power, the wizards loses a life point. Magic cannot speed up the healing process. During this period only 10% of their power points may be recovered during a day of 8 hours rest.
After resting characters need to spend time reading their books or praying to their god.
Each wizard can automatically dispel their own magic. They need to be within the original casting range of the spell (this will be touch for many spells).
You can only have one concentration spell/prayer going at a time. Concentration spells designed for battle cannot be kept going between encounters.
Casting whilst Restrained
Mages and priests are sometimes captured and tied up or gagged (or both). In these circumstances it may still be possible to cast depending upon the effectiveness of the restraint. Make a skill check vs 10. The excess is the level that can be cast.
A mage = Arcane Knowledge (INT) check.
A priest = Faith (WILL) check.
Mages suffer disadvantage for each of binding and gagging. Priests don't need their hads so only suffer for gagging.
The roll determines the highest level that can be successfully cast whilst restrained in that manner. (If a Hero Point is used then it is added for that one round only).
All casts (priests and mages) are at the same disadvantage on the effect roll as the casting attempt roll.
Prayer casting in combat
Priests have a slightly easier time of it than wizards as they are using the power of their god not the arcane forces. Gods are less particular about the verbal and somatics components of prayers. If a priest screams in pain in the middle of calling for divine help the god may even be inclined to help more. If the prayer is stopped though it will certainly fail.
The priest is able to finish the prayer on an endurance save of
5 +1 per SP
Casting whilst moving
Casting in difficult circumstances such as on a horse frequently disrupts spells. The chance of failure depends upon the movement in the ground (or mount). The movement modifier is applied spell skill roll
Casting from a book.
A spell that you have known in the past but currently have forgotten can be cast directly from a spell book. It takes a round of preparation per two spell levels to read through and digest the spell immediately prior to casting. Of course you also need the book open and present (and thus in harms way) to read from.
The Southern Kingdom is more technologically advanced and this causes magic some problems.
Rolling 2d8 on a 2-3 on the dice a wild surge happens roll on the wild surge table.
2 = Spell Fails but draws normal power
3 = Spell may work (see surge table) however 2x power is needed.
Save INT + Arcane knowledge vs 10 + spell level
Fail = Knocked out 1 round
Save = Stunned
Magic is harder to cast (-2 to all magic skill rolls).
Wild surges may occur under other circumstances