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Old 03-07-2016, 01:30 AM   #1
Zarmonic
 
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Default [RPM] Questions

I really like Ritual Path Magic. After years of playing with it only being a theory, I am now both playing in and GMing campaigns that use it. So I'm really happy about that right now. A few questions/ideas have arisen as a result of working with it for real...

Spell Wards:
It says in the book RPM24 that Spell Wards require a Lesser Control Magic affect but nothing else, yet later in the paragraph it goes on to describe rules that have other path skills being used. Overall, I find that section to be short and vague and would really like clarification and ideas as to what it means.

Divinations:
I think it should be official that yes/no questions don't work with this. It's kind of implied in the criteria to be counter to the spirit of the rule. The penalty is based on "total number of possible answers" and that could even be a more atrocious abuse than the 4 digit PIN given as an example.

Greater Sense Mind:
I've got a point coming up in the game I'm running where this will be a very important contest between a PC and an NPC with comparable (very high)Path of Mind vs Will scores. (PC is going to be using magic to get all the info he can) I want to say that we go by the rules given for the Advantages of Mind Reading and Mind Probe when running this encounter. Such specifics are not given in the RPM book (One question per Quick Contest for Mind Probe, just for example) I'm the GM so what I say goes, of course, but does that seem fair?

Hit Location:
Seems to me that for spells that do internal damage, there should be a modifier for targeting a specific body part. (Like the eye or the leg). Thoughts?

Resistance:
Is there really no modifier to make a spell harder to resist?

I will most likely come up with more thoughts about this later but that's what I have for now.

Thanks
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Old 03-07-2016, 10:15 AM   #2
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Default Re: [RPM] Questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zarmonic View Post
Spell Wards:
It says in the book RPM24 that Spell Wards require a Lesser Control Magic affect but nothing else, yet later in the paragraph it goes on to describe rules that have other path skills being used. Overall, I find that section to be short and vague and would really like clarification and ideas as to what it means.
I just reread that paragraph and I don't see what you mean. A spell ward always uses Lesser Control Magic. The only "other Path skills" involved are the ones that the hostile mage must roll against. If it seems to say something else, can you provide a specific quote and how you're interpreting it?

Quote:
Divinations:
I think it should be official that yes/no questions don't work with this. It's kind of implied in the criteria to be counter to the spirit of the rule. The penalty is based on "total number of possible answers" and that could even be a more atrocious abuse than the 4 digit PIN given as an example.
The GM has final say on how to use this, but always look at the question the person is actually asking. As the rules say, you can't divine a question one bit at a time, so a "yes/no" that's really part of a larger question should be interpreted as actually asking the larger question.

Quote:
Greater Sense Mind:
I've got a point coming up in the game I'm running where this will be a very important contest between a PC and an NPC with comparable (very high)Path of Mind vs Will scores. (PC is going to be using magic to get all the info he can) I want to say that we go by the rules given for the Advantages of Mind Reading and Mind Probe when running this encounter. Such specifics are not given in the RPM book (One question per Quick Contest for Mind Probe, just for example) I'm the GM so what I say goes, of course, but does that seem fair?
Sure. You'll rarely go wrong looking to GURPS advantages for specifics when interpreting how an RPM spell should work.

Quote:
Hit Location:
Seems to me that for spells that do internal damage, there should be a modifier for targeting a specific body part. (Like the eye or the leg). Thoughts?
Canonically, you need the +20% "Selective Effect" enhancement (from GURPS Power-Ups 4: Enhancements) to target hit locations with internal damage. So I'd charge +4 energy and apply normal hit location modifiers.

Quote:
Resistance:
Is there really no modifier to make a spell harder to resist?
Nope, because that would be targeting a person with a hostile effect before he'd actually resisted the spell. If you want your spell to be harder to resist, buy your Path skill up.
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Old 03-07-2016, 10:43 AM   #3
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Default Re: [RPM] Questions

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Canonically, you need the +20% "Selective Effect" enhancement (from GURPS Power-Ups 4: Enhancements) to target hit locations with internal damage. So I'd charge +4 energy and apply normal hit location modifiers.
Personally, I prefer to have the Hit Location Penalty instead serve as a bonus to the target's resistance - that way, it's more likely to cause the spell to actually fail rather than just get the "try again next round" result until you pull it off.

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Originally Posted by PK View Post
Nope, because that would be targeting a person with a hostile effect before he'd actually resisted the spell. If you want your spell to be harder to resist, buy your Path skill up.
I've seen a lot of spells built with Bestows a Penalty for this effect. It's never really sat quite right with me - is it correct that this usage of Bestows a Penalty is illegal in RPM?
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Old 03-07-2016, 10:47 AM   #4
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I've seen a lot of spells built with Bestows a Penalty for this effect. It's never really sat quite right with me - is it correct that this usage of Bestows a Penalty is illegal in RPM?
I consider it so, yes. Look at the spell Sorcerous Mark for an example of a fair approach -- if that spell succeeds, the victim has a penalty to resist further of your spells.
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Old 03-07-2016, 11:26 AM   #5
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Default Re: [RPM] Questions

"The ward's creator uses the Path skill and modifiers that were used to cast the ward."

If by Path Skill it means Path of Magic Skill since that's the path used to cast wards then fine.
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Old 03-07-2016, 11:28 AM   #6
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I consider it so, yes. Look at the spell Sorcerous Mark for an example of a fair approach -- if that spell succeeds, the victim has a penalty to resist further of your spells.
Works for me. To the OP, I should note that while it certainly seems like you should be able to pump more energy into a spell to make it harder to resist (the tradeoff being that you need to make larger sacrifices, spend more time, and so forth), actually allowing this will allow the character to double-dip in terms of high skill, as high skill both means a higher resistance penalty and more available energy to safely gather.

If you want to make things nice and complicated, one option would be to figure out which skill level the gathered energy corresponds to (use something like "exceeds 2x Safe Threshold"), then average your actual skill with this to determine the penalty (round toward your skill level). So, let's use a Skill 16 mage. With a 12 energy spell, the spell's "skill level" is 11, so use Skill 14 (13.5, rounded toward actual skill, for 14). With a 200 energy spell, the spell's Skill Level is 23, so use Skill 19. In either case, this doesn't make the spell any more or less likely to be successfully cast - the effective skill is only for purposes of determining the penalty (so it can result in a bonus - for example, if the mage rolls a 16 with that 12-energy spell, he still casts it successfully, but the target resists at +2).
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Old 03-07-2016, 11:32 AM   #7
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Default Re: [RPM] Questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zarmonic View Post
"The ward's creator uses the Path skill and modifiers that were used to cast the ward."

If by Path Skill it means Path of Magic Skill since that's the path used to cast wards then fine.
Well, possibly. There's no reason a ward can't be a small part of a larger spell! If someone uses Path of Magic, Path of Spirit, and Path of Undead to make a ward vs. almost everything, then he uses the effective Path skill for the spell as a whole (in this case, the lowest of the three, at -1).
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Old 03-09-2016, 02:32 PM   #8
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Default Re: [RPM] Questions

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Canonically, you need the +20% "Selective Effect" enhancement (from GURPS Power-Ups 4: Enhancements) to target hit locations with internal damage. So I'd charge +4 energy and apply normal hit location modifiers.

So you mean apply the hit location penalty to the caster's Path Skill? (or bonus to resist like the other guy suggested) Seems to me that there should be a way to build it into the spell. Extra energy that is based on the size of the penalty somehow.
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Old 03-10-2016, 02:01 AM   #9
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Default Re: [RPM] Questions

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Originally Posted by Zarmonic View Post
So you mean apply the hit location penalty to the caster's Path Skill? (or bonus to resist like the other guy suggested) Seems to me that there should be a way to build it into the spell. Extra energy that is based on the size of the penalty somehow.
How about an effect using Bestow a Bonus (p17)? If it was just to offset the location penalty I would class that as "narrow", personally.

I would probably require a Lesser Sense Body effect to incorporate it into a spell.
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Old 03-10-2016, 02:08 AM   #10
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Default Re: [RPM] Questions

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How about an effect using Bestow a Bonus (p17)? If it was just to offset the location penalty I would class that as "narrow", personally.

I would probably require a Lesser Sense Body effect to incorporate it into a spell.
That seems pretty plasuble for that specific effect. I could go with that.
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