Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > GURPS

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-24-2020, 02:03 PM   #21
Say, it isn't that bad!
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

A 1-point Powerstone costs $70, putting it within the price range of most anybody, and allowing a single "free" spell per day.

While not the most grand thing, and generally useless for wizards; combining it with many of these "least spells" gives a definite increase in utility to both.
Say, it isn't that bad! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 02:24 PM   #22
johndallman
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Cambridge, UK
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Also, IQ 16, while not cheap, means you can do most of these spells for free. I can see some of them being bought as perks by characters who use entirely different magic systems.
johndallman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 02:29 PM   #23
Kromm
GURPS Line Editor
 
Kromm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Montréal, Québec
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Here's an example of a roleplaying-forward template that uses the traits and rules in this supplement for a GURPS Dungeon Fantasy character that's roughly as "serious" as an innkeeper.

Hedge Magician
250 points

You're a free-spirited rogue with minor magic. While you aren't a master of any particular trade – and your spells are trivial next to those of "serious" casters – you have a trick to help out in every situation. Your credo is that anybody can blast troubles away with high-powered magic, but it takes someone truly clever to solve problems with the lightest of touches. As an added bonus, you've used all the time wizards spend hunched over old books learning a formidable range of life skills that serve you well even when and where magic doesn't work.
Attributes: ST 11 [10]; DX 14 [80]; IQ 14 [80]; HT 11 [10].

Secondary Characteristics: Damage 1d-1/1d+1; BL 24 lbs.; HP 11 [0]; Will 14 [0]; Per 14 [0]; FP 11 [0]; Basic Speed 6.00 [-5]; Basic Move 6 [0].

Advantages: Hedge Magician 2 [10]; Limited Energy Reserve 4 (Trivial Spells)† [4]; and Luck [15]. • A further 40 points chosen from among ST +1 to +4 [10/level], DX +1 or +2 [20/level], IQ +1 or +2 [20/level], HT +1 to +4 [10/level], Per +1 to +6 [5/level], FP +1 to +3 [3/level], Basic Speed +1.00 or +2.00 [20/level], Basic Move +1 to +3 [5/level], Acute Senses (any) [2/level], Alcohol Tolerance [1], Ambidexterity [5], Charisma [5/level], Combat Reflexes [15], Danger Sense [15], Eidetic Memory [5] or Photographic Memory [10], Enhanced Dodge 1 or 2 [15 or 30], Fearlessness [2/level] or Unfazeable [15], Flexibility [5], Gizmos 1-3 [5/level], Hedge Magician 3-7 [5/level], High Manual Dexterity 1-4 [5/level], Honest Face [1], Intuition [15], Language Talent [10], Languages (any) [2-6/language], Lifting ST 1-3 [3/level], Limited Energy Reserve 5+ (Trivial Spells)† [1/level], Mind Shield [4/level], Night Vision 1-9 [1/level], No Hangover [1], Rapier Wit [5], Resistant to Disease (+3) [3], Resistant to Poison (+3) [5], Serendipity [15/level], Signature Gear [Varies], Spirit Empathy [10], Striking ST 1 or 2 [5 or 10], Wealth (Comfortable or Wealthy) [10 or 20], Wild Talent [20/level], or replace Luck [15] with Extraordinary Luck [30] for 15 points. • Optionally, spend as many of these 40 points as desired on the skills and spells below!

Disadvantages: A total of -45 points in whatever you like, the most common choices being Chummy [-5] or Gregarious [-10], Code of Honor (Pirate's) [-5], Compulsive Carousing [-5*], Compulsive Gambling [-5*], Compulsive Spending [-5*], Curious [-5*], Greed [-15*], Impulsiveness [-10*], Laziness [-10], Lecherousness [-15*], Odious Personal Habits [-5 to -15], Overconfidence [-5*], Post-Combat Shakes [-5*], Sense of Duty (Adventuring companions) [-5], Stubbornness [-5], Trickster [-15*], Weirdness Magnet [-15], and Xenophilia [-10*].

Primary Skills: Expert Skill (Folk Magic) (H) IQ [4]-14 and Savoir-Faire (Wise Folk) (E) IQ [1]-14. • One of Crossbow, Innate Attack (any), or Thrown Weapon (any), all (E) DX+1 [2]-15; Bow or Throwing, both (A) DX [2]-14; or Sling (H) DX-1 [2]-13. • One of these two melee skills packages:

1. One of Broadsword, Rapier, Saber, Shortsword, or Smallsword, all (A) DX [2]-14; one of Shield (Buckler) (E) DX+1 [2]-15, or Cloak or Main-Gauche, both (A) DX [2]-14.
2. One of the sword skills in option 1 or Staff at DX+1 [4]-15.

Secondary and Background Skills: Any 10 of Brawling, Fast-Draw (any), Forced Entry, or Jumping, all (E) DX [1]-14; Climbing, Filch, Riding (any), Stealth, or Wrestling, all (A) DX-1 [1]-13; Acrobatics, Pickpocket, or Sleight of Hand, all (H) DX-2 [1]-12; First Aid, Gesture, Panhandling, or Savoir-Faire (any other), all (E) IQ [1]-14; Cartography, Fast-Talk, Gambling, Hazardous Materials (Magical), Hidden Lore (any), Holdout, Leadership, Lockpicking, Merchant, Occultism, Research, Speed-Reading, Streetwise, or Traps, all (A) IQ-1 [1]-13; Diplomacy (H) IQ-2 [1]-12; Alchemy (VH) IQ-3 [1]-11; Carousing (E) HT [1]-11; Hiking or Sex Appeal, both (A) HT-1 [1]-10; Scrounging (E) Per [1]-14; Lip Reading, Observation, Search, Survival (any), or Urban Survival, all (A) Per-1 [1]-13; or 1 point to raise one of those skills by a level.

Spells: Choose 30 trivial spells, which are all (A) IQ+1 [1]-15 with the +2 for Hedge Magician.
* Multiplied for self-control number; see p. B120.
† Every 10 points in trivial spells let you buy a level of Limited Energy Reserve (Trivial Spells). Every 20 points let you buy a further level. Add these together!
__________________
Sean "Dr. Kromm" Punch <kromm@sjgames.com>
GURPS Line Editor, Steve Jackson Games
My LiveJournal [Just GURPS News][Just The Company]
Kromm is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 02:33 PM   #24
Kromm
GURPS Line Editor
 
Kromm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Montréal, Québec
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Someone who wants to go full-on hedge magician will use their 40 discretionary advantage points to raise Hedge Magician from 2 to 7 (25 points), which gives all their spells at 20 and makes even the tiring ones very easy to cast and maintain; drop another 10 points into trivial spells; add the two more levels of Limited Energy Reserve that 40 spells allow (2 points); and put 3 points in whatever they like, say +1 FP, just in case.

They won't be a head-to-head match for a wizard, but they'll start play with 40 spells at level 20, and a total of 18 energy (12 FP and 6 LER) to spend on them. If the player can't make that useful, they should probably pick another profession!
__________________
Sean "Dr. Kromm" Punch <kromm@sjgames.com>
GURPS Line Editor, Steve Jackson Games
My LiveJournal [Just GURPS News][Just The Company]
Kromm is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 03:26 PM   #25
Say, it isn't that bad!
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
, IQ +1 or +2,
Needs a listed cost, I think?

For a profession like this, my first thought is a less-cinematic spy or secret agent. The least spells have a number that suit a petty trader or courtier; with that, you have a ready reason to wander nearly anywhere, and be found in various places most people can't access. After all, while an ordinary petty trader would never meet with a court noble, a petty trader that can make a magic item that lets you quickly change hairstyles could make a noble the talk of the next ball. And people are much less likely to wonder why a "drunken" courtier is wandering the halls, even if they caught them mumbling to themselves and twitching their fingers.

And, of course, in less adventuresome campaigns, a legitimate petty trader or ordinary courtier could find a number of uses for least spells.

Another thought is a wandering preacher (switching out the Hedge Magician for a form of Power Investiture limited to Least spells).
Say, it isn't that bad! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 04:38 PM   #26
maximara
Banned
 
maximara's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Sumter, SC
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Quote:
Originally Posted by Say, it isn't that bad! View Post
A 1-point Powerstone costs $70, putting it within the price range of most anybody, and allowing a single "free" spell per day.

While not the most grand thing, and generally useless for wizards; combining it with many of these "least spells" gives a definite increase in utility to both.
Actually, even though they cost $700/point, Paut Talismans are more likely as a Powerstone requires Magery 2 and 10 Prerequisites to make. The following is from RAW:

Pros of Paut Talismans vs Powerstones
*Magery 2 and spells not required to make: Since Paut involves Alchemy, Magery 2 and the 10 spells needed to learn Powerstone are not required.
*Faster process at higher energy: It takes 100 days to make a 6 energy Paut Talisman rather then 120 days for a 6 point Powerstone via the Slow and Sure process.
*Option for better base success rate: Since Talisman making is not enchanting, with high enough skill a 16 can succeed and only an 18 is a critical failure.
*Better cumulative success rate: Since a 6 energy Powerstone takes multiple castings there is only a 90.7% chance the item will survive the process rather then the 95.4% for a 6 energy Paut Talisman.
*No quirks: Unlike a Powerstone, a Paut Talisman will have no quirks - either the process works or it doesn't.
*Fixed "recharge" rate: The break even point for a Paut Talisman vs a Powerstone is 2 energy in normal mana. A Paut Talisman recharges far faster in low mana then a Powerstone.
*Multiple Talismans can be used together: There is nothing in the RAW that says that multiple Talismans cannot be used together. This allows a mage to use as many Paut Talismans as they can can wear.

Cons of Paut Talismans vs Powerstones
*Expensive: At $700/energy point a Paut Talisman is far more expensive then a Powerstone of the same energy. In fact, a Paut Talisman does not become less expensive until around 40 energy which is effectively impossible to make.
*Practical Energy limitation: Since each dose (energy point) is -1 for each dose beyond the first Paut Talismans beyond 6 energy are extremely rare.
*Paut Talismans cannot be made more efficient: They must be separate items and cannot be part of another magic item.
*Requires activation in Low Mana: a Talisman requires a roll against the effective skill of the alchemist who originally created it.
*Fixed "recharge" rate: the Classic version of Charge Powerstone and the Mana Pool quirk dramatically changes the break even point in terms of "recharge" rate.
*Must be Worn to "recharge": A Talisman must be worn to come out of dormancy. "A talisman stashed in a chest or backpack will lie dormant indefinitely."[5]
*Amount of Energy cannot be improved: The energy of a Paut Talisman is set at creation. More energy can be added to a Powerstone after creation vis the Powerstone spell.

Last edited by maximara; 07-24-2020 at 11:27 PM.
maximara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 05:05 PM   #27
Michael Thayne
 
Michael Thayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
Here's an example of a roleplaying-forward template that uses the traits and rules in this supplement for a GURPS Dungeon Fantasy character that's roughly as "serious" as an innkeeper.
<snip>
Oh, I don't really doubt the utility of these spells in a Dungeon Fantasy game. For a Scholar with IQ 16+, the 1 FP trivial spells are a compelling alternative to perks. Where I'm having trouble is squaring the mechanics with the suggested "magic for the masses" use-case. A setting where everybody is built on 250 points would be extremely silly, even by Dungeon Fantasy standards. A more typical Dungeon Fantasy campaign is going to build "average folk" on maybe 62 points (equivalent to bargain henchmen), and while a few of these spells seem like they could be useful at that power level, most don't. I'm not saying these spells aren't useful, period, more questioning one specific suggested use-case.
Michael Thayne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 06:16 PM   #28
Refplace
 
Refplace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Yukon, OK
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Thayne View Post
Where I'm having trouble is squaring the mechanics with the suggested "magic for the masses" use-case.
A lot of these spells are the magical version of an Accessory perk. Being able to do your job without equipment is handy. Not going to replace normal work but a good backup or way to impress people.
__________________
Looking for group in my area
My GURPS official contributions Buying them lets us know you want more!
My GURPS fan contribution and blog:
REFPLace GURPS Landing Page
My List of GURPS You Tube videos (plus a few other useful items)
My GURPS Wiki entries
Refplace is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2020, 06:37 PM   #29
Michael Thayne
 
Michael Thayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Quote:
Originally Posted by Refplace View Post
A lot of these spells are the magical version of an Accessory perk. Being able to do your job without equipment is handy. Not going to replace normal work but a good backup or way to impress people.
This is true. But while they end up being about as good as an Accessory perk if you have the IQ / levels of Hedge Mage to cast them without spending FP, they're much less attractive if you have to spend FP on them.

Actually, the best model for a typical hedge mage might be someone who knows a few "buff" spells at a decently high skill level, supporting a larger team of totally ordinary professionals. Buffs can be a bad deal if applied only to yourself, but make you a very useful team member.
Michael Thayne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-2020, 01:13 AM   #30
Anders
 
Anders's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Default Re: GURPS Magic: The Least of Spells

Would Magnetic Finger be strong enough to wipe credit cards, magnetic disks, etc?
__________________
"Someone despises me? That is his concern. But I will see to it that I am not guilty of any word or action deserving contempt, Will he hate me? That is his concern. But I will be kind and well-intentioned to all, and ready to show this very person what he is failing to see - not with any criticism or display of tolerance, but with genuine good will..." Marcus Aurelius
Anders is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
magic, trivial spells

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:43 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.