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Old 09-11-2017, 07:50 AM   #1
LoneWolf23k
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Default Books and Spell Magic: Alternative Colleges

Okay, something I was wondering for a Fantasy campaign: What if instead of organizing spells into Colleges with chains of Prerequisites, one organized them into Books, using the Paths and Books rules from Thaumatology? Has something like that been done in Pyramid before?
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Old 09-11-2017, 09:28 AM   #2
whswhs
 
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Default Re: Books and Spell Magic: Alternative Colleges

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Originally Posted by LoneWolf23k View Post
Okay, something I was wondering for a Fantasy campaign: What if instead of organizing spells into Colleges with chains of Prerequisites, one organized them into Books, using the Paths and Books rules from Thaumatology? Has something like that been done in Pyramid before?
A structure along those lines is suggested in the Basic Set, under the skill of Ritual Magic, though what it envisions is more like Paths than Books. (The difference is that Paths are thematically coherent, whereas Books are personal and somewhat arbitrary; a Book contains all the spells a particular mage thought about writing down at a particular time. As a result, Path skills, or College skills, default to Ritual Magic-6, but Book skills have no default.) But if you review the Ritual Magic skill definition, I think you'll find it does a lot of what you want.
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Old 09-11-2017, 07:08 PM   #3
hal
 
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Default Re: Books and Spell Magic: Alternative Colleges

Try and procure a copy of GURPS WITCHWORLD. There, they organized spells not by collages per se, but by colors.
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Old 09-15-2017, 01:14 AM   #4
Prince Charon
 
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Default Re: Books and Spell Magic: Alternative Colleges

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Try and procure a copy of GURPS WITCHWORLD. There, they organized spells not by collages per se, but by colors.
I have a copy of that somewhere (first GURPS book I ever bought, way back in the very early 1990s, and worth it even if you're not a Witchworld fan like I am, IMHO), I'll see if I can find it to summarize.

*rummage, rummage*

OK, on page 76, there's a quote from The Jargoon Pard, by Andre Norton:

"There is Red Magic that deals with physical strength, the health of the body, the art of war also. Secondly comes Orange Magic, which is a matter of self-confidence and strong desire. Yellow is the Magic of the Mind, needing logic and philosophy, that which the Thaumatugists most dealt in.

Green is the hue not only of Nature's growing things and fertility, but also of beauty and the creating of beauty through man's own efforts. Blue summons the emotions, the worship of whatever gods men believe in, prophecy. Indigo is concerned with the weather, with storms and the foretelling by stars.

Purple is a force that is drawn upon warily, for it carries the seeds of lust, hate, fear, power -- and it is far too easily misused. Violet is pure power among the spirits, and few, even of the Voices, can claim to harness it. While Brown is the Magic of woods and glades, of the animal world."

Obviously, a lot of this is open to interpretation, and must have given the writers a number of headaches deciding what went where, even if a few are pretty clear. I like the way they did set it up (get the book for more details):

Red: Body Control, Healing, Fire, and various weapon-enhancing spells (from Enchantment, Making and Breaking, et cetra), as well as some of the Light and Darkness, Mind Control, Protection and Warning, and Sound spells.

Orange: Movement (most notably the Gate spells), a few Body Control spells (most notably Alter Visage and Alter Body), more Light and Darkness spells, Sound, some Meta-Spells, some Protection and Warning spells, and a few 'good' Necromancy spells (Turn Zombie and Banish).

Yellow: Knowledge, Meta-Spells, Illusion and Creation (Illusions only), Communication and Empathy, some Mind Control spells.

Green: Plant Spells are the core, obviously, also Food, some Earth, and oddly enough one Meta-Spell (Remove Curse).

Blue: Emotion-related Mind Control and Communication and Empathy spells, two Meta-Spells (Bless and Restore Mana), some Spirit-related Necromancy spells, and the Divination spells other than Astrology.

Indigo: Air and Water spells, Divination (Astrology), some Sound spells, and some weather-related Protection and Warning spells.

Purple: Mind Control, some Earth spells, some Communication and Empathy spells, one Meta-Spell (Curse), some Making and Breaking spells, some Necromancy spells, one Food spell (Poison Food) - pretty much, most of the spells here are easy to view as evil, save for Exorcism; as the lady said, "far too easily misused."

Violet: Enchantment (including Enchant, itself), some Necromancy spells, some Mind Control spells, some Meta-Spells, some Earth spells, Illusion and Creation (Creation only), some Making and Breaking spells, Summon spells for Demons and Elementals.

Brown: Animal spells, a few Plant spells, one Air spell (No-Smell).

I sort of wonder how much input, if any, Andre Norton had on which spells they put where.
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