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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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If your game has magic in it, how do you like it to work lore and gameplay wise? Also, name magical-schools you like, such as pyromancy, geokinesis, psychomancy, etc.

For mine, magic returned to the world quite suddenly due to cataclysms, and saps the energy of the wielder, for this reason, a magic users toughness/endurance determines how many starting 'mana points' they have, with each spell costing different amounts of mana, if they run out of points, they can sap their own stamina to cast more.
Also, whats the WORST magic you've come across/can come up with in your head for a tabletop game.

>retard magic
My setting uses an alternate Vancian set-up for dungeon crawling games. No spell levels or daily limits, but spells take 10 minutes to prepare to be cast.

I don't really have a fluff explanation for this either. I might just keep it to reading from a spellbook. I'd actually like some advice on how to fluff it.
How does that work during a fight, especially a surprise one, when each round is only a few seconds (or is it longer in your game)? Is it 10 minutes per each spell?
Don't have a setting, but I do have a couple of ideas.

>Mana is a renewable resource that must be harvested from lifeforce, with humans having the highest amount of lifeforce. As such, the most powerful wizards tend to have cults set up around them to have a steady stream of it.

>Raw magic is fairly difficult to control, as such mankind has decided to combine it with technology for easier use for the common man. Here magi-tech prosthesis become all the rage.

>To get magic one must make a deal with a demon. After the deal the magic is yours, yet you have a contract hanging above your head. Don't forget your end.

Anyone want more details?

In my ideal system I've drawn inspiration from several systems mainly oWoD with things like Mage's Spheres and Discipline.

The idea is that your magic is both the knowledge as well as the act of doing it so there are different types of magic that you can gain ranks in and having certain ranks in certain types of magic allows for more advanced forms of magic

For instance, if you have a skill (let's call it Golemancy) you are knowledgable on how to use your will to animate inanimate objects. At the lowest levels you could make rough amalgamations of humanoid shapes and use them to help attack but their effectiveness varies. As you rank up this skill you can get a bit more sophisticated having pure "elemental" golems that have more distinct shapes and better skill/ability although the key would be to have a permanent one with a body you make for it.

Another one would be Necromancy where the lower levels you learn how to communicate with spirits and detect them, The higher levels would even enable you to contain them and seal them up in something as well as advancing your studies of anatomy

Combne these two? You can basically create zombies and possibly true undead.
Heres the fluff for my setting.
>Crystal Magic
Taking pity on man for only having physical weapons Panur the serpent shed his Crystalline skin and gave it to man.
With it, man could cast a spell by focusing and using the power inside the Crystal.
Wanna cast lightning?
Have a power Crystal and you're good to go.
Be careful becuase it'll run out eventually.
>Chaos Magic
Man however, wanted more.
They prayed for power and eventually, gave their souls to Panur in exchange for magic.
Thus blood magic was made.
Want to bend people to your will?
-2 health a thrall
>Abyss magic
Kroa, the king of nothingness seeing apl this cool shit stole from Panur and made his own magic.
He was shit at it though and now demons are a thing.
Want to have a slave?
Without sacrificing your life?
You're shit out of luck now roll to control the demon you summoned.
Magic isn't simply divided into schools like conjuration, abjuration, necromancy, etc. Instead it's divided into actual schools with majors/minors. Because of this, the spells you have access to are highly limited. Spells are also reliant on three pools in addition to Stamina, Vitality, and Sanity: Insight, Inspiration, and Favor.

Insight is the resource that governs academic magics. Acquiring or altering a spell requires months of studying. Academic spells, while versatile as a whole, take a lot of effort to learn and are generally underwhelming. Also, some secrets of the universe are best left unknown.

Inspiration is required to cast magic by force. These spells tend to be an expression of will or desire on the very nature of reality. While potent and flashy, they tend to take a great physical and mental toll on the caster. Inspiration is recovered by observing and exploring the world around you.

Spells that rely on Favor are the ones that involve beseeching a higher power. These magics range greatly in power and cost. To recover Favor, the caster must meet the requirements of their Patron. Which can be extremely dangerous.


Also, while not magic, I do have a lot of mechanical and "science" fuckery going on in the game. But that stuffs mostly reliant on material wealth.
for my setting magic is a fact of life as accepted as water or air
true powerful magic is rare, being concentrated in guilds, colleges, or other large institutions who pursue a deeper understanding of magic, but a few people in town know a few spells, and even a backwater village might know a cantrip or 2
I like to come up with a variety of styles of magic, but one of the more unique ones I've come up with is a system of blood magic. I haven't had a chance to run a campaign with it, but it's something I'd like to try sometime, probably in a more rules-light setting where I can have a lot of freedom for more open-ended magic tailored to my particular preferred approach.

This would be a fantastical alt-history version of the real world, around the 19th century. In this setting, blood is known to carry significant power, truly bearing the life force of the thing, and people can learn to harness its power. Blood arts are broadly categorized into certain disciplines:

The art of drawing out the power of the blood to enhance one's own physical and mental abilities. One's temperament determines the sorts of enhancements that come more easily: "Hot-blooded" individuals, given to strong passions and impulse, can more easily enhance strength, speed, toughness, and social presence. "Cold-blooded" people, more inclined to be calm, collected, and deliberate, are better at enhancing coordination, perception, focus, and memory. Most people use Quickening subconsciously to some extent whenever they push themselves to do something difficult, but deliberate training in the art yields noticeably greater returns on the blood-power burned.

The art of manipulating one's blood outside of the body to form appendages, tools, and weapons. It takes extraordinary skill in this art to be able to control blood that has lost direct connection to your body.

The conversion of the power within your blood to some manner of energy. The kinds of energy one can produce depend on temperament: Hot-blooded people can generate heat/flame, lightning, thunder, and light. Cold-blooded sublimators can generate cold, corrosion, force, and shadow.
Transferring your blood into another person or object (usually by smearing it on to absorb into the skin/surface, not by injection; blood transfusion as practiced in modern real-world medicine has not yet been invented, and would be complicated by the presence of life energy in the blood). This allows for attunement to an object, giving you instinctive mastery of its use and understanding of its function (and for very skilled Transfusers, knowledge of its history), basically making it more like an extension of your own body. Transfusion to living things allows you to imbue them with some of your own abilities (like Quickening, some are easier than others depending on temperament), or heal them with your own life force. Transfusion can also allow you to scry on something or otherwise sense things about it.

Forming supernaturally-enforced pacts and partnerships, or using another person's blood against them to control or afflict them by sympathetic magic.

Combinations of the blood arts can allow for unique effects:

>Quickening + Shaping: Shapeshifting.
(This is actually the basis for lycanthropy, which is a form of blood curse.)

>Quickening + Sublimation: Emit energy directly from your body, without needing to break skin to bleed.

>Quickening + Transfusion: Enhance another's abilities without the usual 1-to-1 detriment to your own for such Transfusions.

>Shaping + Sublimation: More precise applications of energy effects, including forming elementals/constructs of Sublimation energy.

>Shaping + Transfusion: Telekinetically manipulate objects linked to you by transfusion.

>Sublimation + Transfusion: Imbue an object with energy powers.

>Binding + Any: Draw glyphs/seals with your blood that will automatically generate a certain effect in response to a particular trigger.
Aside from the blood arts, which require personal training to learn to use effectively, the power of blood can also be harnessed by offering it to some higher (or lower) power. Hence animal (or in some cases, human) sacrifices are common in most religions. The major exceptions are Buddhism (in which the devotee offers a portion of his own blood up as a form of self-denial), and Christianity (in which the blood of Christ spilled on the cross is invoked; in this setting, all denominations hold the Communion wine to have a particular role in allowing believers to tap into the power of Christ's blood, though beliefs vary as to the mechanics of how).

These religious blood rites are important in affording people protection from vampires, blood curses, and other various nasties that populate the world. While it is not clear whether any particular religion's rites are more effective than another's, it is clear that those who forgo regular participation in one such rite or another are markedly more vulnerable to supernatural threats. Some have succeeded in formulating secular, atheistic blood rites, offered in dedication to "human potential" or some other secular ideal, but even secularists have their rites. They claim these rites are essentially just another form of blood art, harnessing a particular property of blood that can only be brought out by firm belief and ritualistic offering. Others believe these secular blood rites simply work because the offering is accepted by some non-discriminating spirit (many would say "demon" is the proper word) that is happy to accept the offering regardless of the intent behind it.
What are the biological consequences of blood supplying life directly rather than facilitating cellular respiration? Do people still need to breathe? If so, what are their lungs extracting? How does life emerge this way?
Not nitpicking; genuinely curious since it's a neat idea.
It's not like there isn't a purely material basis of life processes as we understand biochemistry to work. There are, after all, still plants and fungi and all manner of living things without blood. Blood only carries the particular sort of vital energy peculiar to higher animal life. It's related to biological life, and still carries out the basic metabolic functions we understand it to in the real world, but as pertains to the magic system it's more especially tied to metaphysical elements of consciousness and will (to whatever extent the animal in question has them). That special vital energy has some interchangeability with physical life processes (most particularly by the Quickening blood art), but it's something somewhat separate from biological life processes as such.

The particulars of it aren't terribly relevant, because (1) this is quite explicitly a world that runs on vitalism, not naturalistic biochemisty as we understand it, so the rules of biochemistry as we understand them don't necessarily hold in all the ways we would expect them to, and (2) the particulars are not exactly known in-setting regardless (consider the state of biology in the mid-1800s), so if any player asks about detailed particulars there's really no hard and fast answer they could possibly access in-character.
Is soul based magic overdone?
literally none because its not real
groinal chafing magic.

the discomfort from sweat, itch, and friction of in genital and rectal regions in/against clothing is channeled into casting spells. This can take the form of channeling discomfort to another being through sympathetic resonance, alleviating the discomfort of others, performing acts of healing, and many others. Primarily a passive offensive art.
He means 10 minutes of prep time per spell.

As in, when the party rests, you gain a spell for every 10 minutes spent resting and not sleeping.
>retard magic

Only retards can harness magic. The more retarded they are, the more powerful their spells become.
Common theme that runs through all the games I play in and run cause we share notes, is magic divided into three groups. Red, White and Black magic.

Red Magic is the power of chaos but not the crazy kind. Its the movement of energy and matter. Its transmutation. You take all the heat in the area, condense it in one spot and you got a fireball. If a wall is in your way then you move it by taking where it is and put it where its not.

White magic is Order. Its not good magic though people mistake it for that. Its stability and stagnation. When you use White magic to "heal" someone, you are simple resetting them back to how they were before. Protective spells and wards are simply reminders to reality about how things should look and puts that thing in a kind of stasis.

Black magic is the power of Entropy. Its not bad or evil. Its the opposite of White magic and similar to Red magic but instead of turning one thing into another, it makes all things equal. Hit someone with Black magic to kill them and you are simple taking all the energy they have and spreading it across a wider area. Hit a wall with it and watch it crumble to dust as the bonds between molecules weaken and nothing holds it together anymore. Its the inevitable heat death of the universe.

It can seem limiting but the truly skilled can do a whole lot within their field of magic. Such as Red Wizards healing by just moving the wounded bits about to make it look whole again or killing by making a body forget its shape thus turning people into goo. Really, killing with any of them is the easy bit. Only Red is good at making stuff but even then you have to have something to start with.

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