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Old 01-24-2017, 10:18 AM   #1
Prince Charon
 
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Default [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

An advantage and disadvantage of Ritual Path Magic is that you can do practically anything, including really game-breaking Greater Effects, as long as you can gather enough energy for it. Certainly, the GM can just go 'Nope!' but this can get pretty frustrating, and sometimes SoD-breaking, if you haven't made a rule in advance. You could forbid Greater Effects entirely, but that would be a different thread. Thus, I've thought of a few ways to limit just the Greater Effects (though it's possible I may have read one or two of these elsewhere, and one I know I did).

Firstly, let's say that Ritual Adept only applies to Lesser Effects, and you need another, more expensive advantage for Greater Effects. I would go with Greater Ritual Adept having a cost of 400 points, and contain Ritual Adept, so you don't need to take both. This allows the Final Boss of the campaigne to throw out Greater Rituals on the fly, but still limits the PCs and most NPCs, save in especially high-powered games. Tailor the cost to your setting, of course.

Next, suppose that Greater Rituals are more specific - you don't just need to take enough time to gather the right amount of energy, you need to start (or finish) the ritual at midnight, perhaps under a full moon on the Winter Solstice. You don't just need a Ritual Space, you need to perform it in the Temple of Iupiter Optimvs Maximvs in Rome. You don't just need an apple, you need an Apple of the Hesperides, or an olive branch from the highest (not tallest) olive tree on Mount Parnassus. The Greater a ritual is, the more restrictive each component is, in other words. This not only limits Greater Rituals, it's nicely genre-appropriate for a lot of stories your game might be inspired by.

This one I know I've seen, and fortunately, I know who said it: On Ravens N' Pennies, Christopher R. Rice did an article called Beginner's Ritual Path Magic. Have a look, but to summarise it, if you've never cast a particular spell before, or haven't cast it all that often, you get a Familiarity Penalty for it, until you've practiced it enough. This does restrict Lesser Rituals as written, but it's more limiting for Greater Rituals, especially when combined with the above. Depending on the GM, a grimoire might offset the penalty by more than its bonus, to the point that even a +0 grimoire might be helpful (I know I've seen +0 grimoires suggested for RPM before, but I'm not sure where).


So, does this look interesting?

What effect do you think these rules would have on a setting like Monster Hunters, and what on a setting like Banestorm, where this alternate RPM would replace another magic system?
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Old 01-25-2017, 05:07 PM   #2
ericthered
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Default Re: [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

I'm GMing a Monster Hunters game where effects over 100 points require special times, places, and so forth. The player reaction has been to not even ask about the special requirements, though I think if a single spell would solve a case they'd probably look into it. I think its working fairly well, though I was hoping they'd treat it less like a hard limit.

I've also thought about "Spell familiarity" with RPM, but I've never done it. Yes, it feels right with banestorm.
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Old 01-26-2017, 10:35 AM   #3
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Default Re: [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

Quote:
Originally Posted by ericthered View Post
I'm GMing a Monster Hunters game where effects over 100 points require special times, places, and so forth.
I think this is a better idea than just limiting Greater Effects if your intent is more to avoid breaking a setting with overly powerful spells than, say, preventing mages from throwing around fireballs. In fact, Lesser Effects can break a setting nearly as readily as Greater ones - Lesser Create Matter can generate enough precious metals to break the global market on them, for example.

While it's a bit more work, if you have issues with players treating that 100 energy as a hard cap, instead of outright disallowing high-energy spells you could use a "diminishing returns" effect - above 100 (or whatever you choose) points, every 3 energy nominally gathered only produces 1 energy, above 150 points, this becomes 5:1, above 200 7:1, above 300 10:1, and so forth. Special times, places, etc reduce (or get rid of) this surcharge, allowing the spells to be cast normally.
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Old 01-26-2017, 11:41 AM   #4
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Default Re: [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

Each greater effect is basically +2 CF to spells cost

I have pondered making say 'Barely Greater' at +.5 CF, 'Minor Greater' at +1 CF, 'Greater' still at +2 CF, 'Major Greater' at +3 CF and 'Great Greater' at +5 CF
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Old 01-27-2017, 07:07 PM   #5
Prince Charon
 
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Default Re: [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

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Originally Posted by Kalzazz View Post
Each greater effect is basically +2 CF to spells cost

I have pondered making say 'Barely Greater' at +.5 CF, 'Minor Greater' at +1 CF, 'Greater' still at +2 CF, 'Major Greater' at +3 CF and 'Great Greater' at +5 CF
Interesting. I had a vaguely similar idea (though without hard numbers), but called them 'Intermediate' (Barely Greater to Minor Greater, I think) 'Greater,' and 'Epic,' with possibly a higher level called something like 'World-Shaking.'

Either way, the idea that the more energy you need to gather at once, the harder it is (outside of special conditions), makes a lot of sense.

For something like Banestorm, it neatly explains why the Elves haven't reversed it or shut it down, because that absolutely falls into 'World-Shaking/Great Greater territory, on top of the severe difficulty of avoiding the familiarity penalties, and the simple fact that gathering so much energy would be terrifically difficult even without this.
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Old 01-29-2017, 07:37 PM   #6
4rc4num
 
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Default Re: [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

Another option, give 1 automatic quirk for every 100 energy plus all the quirks with failed rolls. You can rule that casting in a place of power remove a number of quirks equal the place bonus.

What do you think ?
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Old 01-29-2017, 08:31 PM   #7
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Default Re: [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

A method I have used to explain away the number of epic world changing events in a world where RPM exists is that: RPM magic creates 'echos' backward in time which allows magic-sensitive individuals to detect the casting.

This means that once spells start tipping the 200 energy range people have notice of them being put together, and the only way around this is elaborate chains of progressively less powerful scrywalls and scrys against attempts to break those scrywalls.

Basically world destroying magic can be done, but there will be months of notice and lots of involved parties trying to stop it, basically moving it to 'plot point and quest generation' rather than 'legitimate fear that the town of mucksburg with a grand total of 1 onery witch and 30odd very angry peasants can be upset about the kings taxes and turn his castle into a smoking crater'

Here's an older post about the concept:
http://forums.sjgames.com/showpost.p...0&postcount=12
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Old 01-30-2017, 07:50 PM   #8
Prince Charon
 
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Default Re: [RPM] RPM with tightly restricted Greater Effects

Quote:
Originally Posted by 4rc4num View Post
Another option, give 1 automatic quirk for every 100 energy plus all the quirks with failed rolls. You can rule that casting in a place of power remove a number of quirks equal the place bonus.

What do you think ?
Sounds good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by starslayer View Post
A method I have used to explain away the number of epic world changing events in a world where RPM exists is that: RPM magic creates 'echos' backward in time which allows magic-sensitive individuals to detect the casting.

This means that once spells start tipping the 200 energy range people have notice of them being put together, and the only way around this is elaborate chains of progressively less powerful scrywalls and scrys against attempts to break those scrywalls.

Basically world destroying magic can be done, but there will be months of notice and lots of involved parties trying to stop it, basically moving it to 'plot point and quest generation' rather than 'legitimate fear that the town of mucksburg with a grand total of 1 onery witch and 30odd very angry peasants can be upset about the kings taxes and turn his castle into a smoking crater'

Here's an older post about the concept:
http://forums.sjgames.com/showpost.p...0&postcount=12
I've used this idea in the Five Earths setting in my .sig, so I'm rather fond of it - also, it makes sense, since big disasters are exactly the sort of this that would be easily noticed with precognition or predictive magics.
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