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Old 06-09-2017, 01:35 PM   #14
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Default Re: Has Anyone Done a GURPS Mage The Ascension Workup For GURPS 4e

Which Attribute did you base it on? That strikes me as the most problematic aspect of that approach. Conceptually, Will would be the best choice, since MtA makes a big deal of the centrality of willpower in Sphere Magic; but Will is far too cheap to serve as the attribute base of a Wildcard Skill. I hesitate to use IQ, mainly because the original material does not assume that you have to be smart to be good at magic. My inclination would be to give it a fixed base (i.e., 10); but at that point, why call it a Wildcard Skill anymore?

Here's how I'd do it:

There is no Magery Advantage for Sphere Magic. What there is instead is an Awakened Advantage that is to Illuminated as Sensitive is to Empathy: like Illuminated, it's based on you knowing intuitively about the true nature of reality; unlike Illuminated, it doesn't let you automatically spot other Awakened, just Awakened phenomena. That is, if you witness Willworking or the ongoing result of Willworking, you immediately recognize it as such; but you won't automatically recognize a Will worker unless you see him in action. I'd charge 5 points for that.

When you do your own Willworking, you do it by means of Power Investiture (your Avatar). The Willworking roll is 10+Power Investiture or Will, whichever is lower; but see below for an important caveat. You also need to have appropriate Realms before you're allowed to even try; and your Realm levels cannot exceed your Power Investiture.

In M20, the concept of “paradigm” from earlier editions has been revised and expanded. Most importantly, the notion of Practices has been introduced, where Practices are such things as Alchemy, Faith, High Ritual, Witchcraft, and so on. Each Practice includes a list of Instruments (what were called foci in earlier editions) and Abilities (which GURPS calls Skills) that tend to be featured in Willworking involving that Practice. There's a game mechanic whereby an Ability can be used to improve a Willworking roll, the implication being that the Ability comes from the Practice. For GMtA4e, I'd allow a variation of GURPS Powers' “Skills for Everyone” optional rule to be used here, floating an appropriate Skill from the mage's Practice to the “lower of 10+PI or Will” base and using that as the Willworking roll.

Determining what Skill to use is, unavoidably, a subjective call; the GM should be on the watch for player's trying to “game the system” by always going for the same skill no matter what the Effect is, and/or favoring Easier skills over Harder ones. Indeed, the Easier the Skill, the more strict the GM should be in deciding whether or not it's appropriate.

Your Realms determine what you can do, not how well you can do it; in fact, as Anders pointed out, the usual energy costs of Realm Magic are replaced by skill penalties; so the more levels you need, the more difficult the roll will be. This can be offset by various magical modifiers in a manner not unlike Path/Book Magic's Ritual Elements; indeed, I'd take a lot of cues from Effect-Shaping Path/Book Magic, with Nodes and Junctures replacing Sacred Space, and appropriate use of Instruments replacing Material Components. In that regard, your Power Investiture also serves a similar function to Path/Ritual Adept, in that it removes penalties for not having appropriate Elements, gradually expanding the scope of what you can do without.
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