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Old 09-24-2017, 11:35 PM   #1
Jachra
 
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Default [Thaumatology] Conditional Terminations

This question refers to Conditional Terminations from the sidebar on GURPS Thaumatology p. 242.

I'm trying to figure out what would be a good level for "until these words chiseled in stone are gone."

For example, for a curse carved into an Egyptian tomb.

So on the one hand, that can plausibly last centuries. On the other, it only takes an idiot with a rock to destroy it.

~ Some other examples:
"...until I, the caster, die."
"...until you drink alcohol again."
"...until you touch her again."
"...until you say [word] again."
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:03 AM   #2
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Default Re: [Thaumatology] Conditional Terminations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jachra View Post
This question refers to Conditional Terminations from the sidebar on GURPS Thaumatology p. 242.
Some of these wordings seem to depend on the circumstances, and to assume that caster and subject are in conversation.
Quote:
I'm trying to figure out what would be a good level for "until these words chiselled in stone are gone."
Well, if the subject is present and sees the words, but we presume they're prevented from destroying them immediately, about -9. Staging an expedition to get to wherever the words are and destroying them should be possible in a year. Even if the subject doesn't want them gone, somebody presumably will.
Quote:
"...until I, the caster, die."
Presuming nobody actually has motive to kill the caster to end the working, -10 for two years, following Terminally Ill on B.158.
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Old 09-25-2017, 12:52 PM   #3
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Default Re: [Thaumatology] Conditional Terminations

Those are good suggestions.

Say the words are cut deep into an ax blade - casual use won't ruin it, but a good hit on the blade will certainly wreck the wording.
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:15 PM   #4
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Default Re: [Thaumatology] Conditional Terminations

The natural duration of words carved in stone is centuries, which would imply a -15 or so. But on the other hand, They could be taken down shortly, and give humans a lot more agency than otherwise -- if the people involved know about it. If you can hide the stone, or otherwise take measures to prevent destruction of the words, its 15 to 13.

If you've got to leave the stone out in the open or nearby the target or some other appropriate limitation, then it will drop quite a bit to 7 or so: Prominent writing declaring the solution to a curse is to destroy it tends not to last. Of course, if its a binding on a monster, someone could set a watch around it to ensure the beast remain asleep for all time.
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:53 PM   #5
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Default Re: [Thaumatology] Conditional Terminations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jachra View Post
This question refers to Conditional Terminations from the sidebar on GURPS Thaumatology p. 242.

I'm trying to figure out what would be a good level for "until these words chiseled in stone are gone."

For example, for a curse carved into an Egyptian tomb.

So on the one hand, that can plausibly last centuries. On the other, it only takes an idiot with a rock to destroy it.

~ Some other examples:
"...until I, the caster, die."
"...until you drink alcohol again."
"...until you touch her again."
"...until you say [word] again."
I've ruled it as 13 in my campaigns.
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Old 09-25-2017, 07:33 PM   #6
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Default Re: [Thaumatology] Conditional Terminations

I was playing around with general guidelines for conditionals and a friend came up with this:
Quote:
Conditional durations are split into two modifiers that are multiplied together:
1. In Nature's Course: The base likelihood that the condition will occur naturally if someone or something were not aware of the magic's presence.
Nearly Certain (1): The next sunrise, the next breath
Common (2): When someone walks inside the room's maintenance shaft
Rare (3): When the object of the casting is destroyed
Absurd (4): When the object of the casting becomes unrecognizable or falls apart

2. Deliberate Trigger: The likelihood that the condition to be *made to occur* by someone deliberately
Trivial (x1): Cursed until their next breath.
Mild Effort (x2): Finding out which locked room that has the spell and finding a way inside, figuring out a puzzle
Strenuous Effort (x3): Taking a sledgehammer and smashing up the engraved wall
Vast Effort (x4): Breaking into the sealed tomb, fighting past the traps and guardian spirits, and finding the time to chisel away the runes
Nearly impossible (x5): Becoming wealthy enough to build your skyscraper high enough to break the cloud layer, buying a castle full of gargoyles and relocating it on top of your skyscraper
What do you think?
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