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-   -   Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Hands? (http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread.php?t=67379)

MrPibMan 02-26-2010 02:56 AM

Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Hands?
 
Suppose we have a Mage armed with a Quarterstaff (which of course, is two-handed) that is enchanted with the Staff spell. The Mage is trying to cast a spell that takes two seconds while holding the Quarterstaff in his two hands. He knows the spell at skill 14, so M8 says he must make the Ritual of "speaking a few quiet words and making a gesture."

Under the box named "Staffs" on M13, the book says, "You can point as part of the ritual to cast a spell." Does that mean that the Mage does not need release his two-handed grip on the Quarterstaff to completely perform his magical ritual? Can he "point" with the Quarterstaff, rather than removing one hand from the Quarterstaff, to make a hand gesticulation? Otherwise, if he was to release one of his hands from holding the Quarterstaff, the Quarterstaff would not be at the ready in case he needed to use a Parry, yes? So, by pointing with the staff, waving it somewhat, if he couples that with speaking his incantation, can he still perform both the verbal and physical components of the ritual to be able to successfully cast his spell and still have his Quarterstaff available for parrying? I'm assuming to NOT using the "Optional Rule: Alternate Magic Rituals" listed in the box on p. M9.

Let's suppose there was an opponent waiting next to him, suspecting him of being a wizard and his Wait move was to attack th Mage at the first moment of spell preparation. If the Mage Parries and then makes his Will-3 roll to maintain his concentration, can he still gesticulate or point while keeping both hands on his Quarterstaff, yet still be able to maintain concentration and cast his spell later?

Gudiomen 02-26-2010 03:10 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Making a gesture only takes a fraction of a second. It doesn't mean the mage has to unready his staff. He releases one hand from it, gives the enemy the finger, and then returns the hand to the staff.

Combat and weapon usage is something fluid, it isn't assumed that the combatant has the hand glued to the weapon... you occasionally shift your grip, flex your fingers, whatever...

You can still defend normally.

Now, if the enemy was waiting specifically for this, there might be an opening. If you ask me, this is exactly what Evaluate is...

Quote:

Originally Posted by MrPibMan (Post 941728)
If the Mage Parries and then makes his Will-3 roll to maintain his concentration, can he still gesticulate or point while keeping both hands on his Quarterstaff, yet still be able to maintain concentration and cast his spell later?

Canonically, yes. The Will-3 roll is to maintain concentration despite this "interruption".

Captain-Captain 02-26-2010 03:20 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Yes and no. At low end skill levels 9-, he has to SHOUT his verbal and gestrure grandly for twice the indicated time to cast the spell. If he moves out of the hex he's in the spell fails. ALL effort on his part must be focused on casting the spell.

It sucks to be at that skill level. (Or to have 14- skill in a low mana region!)

At higher skill levels, it's not a serious problem and staff use shouldn't be a problem.

I would make the case though, that the STAFF enchantment means that the gesture part of casting is met by holding a staff enchanted item. But that's my interpretation.

Now, having musical magery and knowing only how to play the saxophone is an impediment on combat!!! ;)

It's worse if your instrument is Bagpipes or God help you, the Accordion. Not only are your hands just as occupied, you have everyone on both sides focusing their attacks on you for playing that #$%^:)(@ intrument!!!!

weby 02-26-2010 03:58 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain-Captain (Post 941738)

It's worse if your instrument is Bagpipes or God help you, the Accordion. Not only are your hands just as occupied, you have everyone on both sides focusing their attacks on you for playing that #$%^:)(@ intrument!!!!

But bagpipes do usually give bonus to intimidation rolls.. :)

Philomath 02-26-2010 04:14 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
I'd say the staff with the Staff spell can be used to make gestures just the same as hands could. A wizard would wave the staff around, draw shapes in the air with its tip and generally do the same amount of gesturing as would be required by his skill.

Quote:

Originally Posted by weby (Post 941752)
But bagpipes do usually give bonus to intimidation rolls.. :)

Especially if you are painted blue and your allies are ready to throw trees.

RyanW 02-26-2010 09:23 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
I would probably rule that (assuming you don't have to play a musical instrument or the like) you can gesture with the staff, using the tip of it in place of your hand.

rosignol 02-26-2010 10:28 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain-Captain (Post 941738)
Yes and no. At low end skill levels 9-, he has to SHOUT his verbal and gestrure grandly for twice the indicated time to cast the spell.

Thank you. I now have the mental image of Gandalf doing a Pole Dance in my head. Where is the brain bleach?

Kromm 02-26-2010 10:32 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by RyanW (Post 941878)

I would probably rule that (assuming you don't have to play a musical instrument or the like) you can gesture with the staff, using the tip of it in place of your hand.

Yes, you can. Magic, p. 13 explicitly allows staff use as part of the ritual to cast a spell. The only downside is that you have to point at the subject while casting, so a surprise casting may not be possible. This could matter if the spell takes several seconds (the subject might run away or attack you!), or if it produces a physical effect that allows a normal active defense.

Not another shrubbery 02-26-2010 10:49 AM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Kromm
Yes, you can. Magic, p. 13 explicitly allows staff use as part of the ritual to cast a spell.

Should that supersede the ritual requirement for Skill 9 or less that both the caster's hands be free?

Kromm 02-26-2010 12:23 PM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Not another shrubbery (Post 941934)

Should that supersede the ritual requirement for Skill 9 or less that both the caster's hands be free?

Both of his hands are free, if he has a Staff item. A Staff item counts as your hands for all purposes to do with magic, remember.

ericbsmith 02-26-2010 12:36 PM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Are you guys talking about a staff or a staff enchanted with the Staff spell? Because one is just a piece of wood that should get in the way of spell casting while the other is a magical extension of the casters body.

David Johnston2 02-26-2010 01:42 PM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ericbsmith (Post 942022)
Are you guys talking about a staff or a staff enchanted with the Staff spell?

The Staff spell was specified in the original post.

Bruno 02-26-2010 02:58 PM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by David Johnston2 (Post 942055)
The Staff spell was specified in the original post.

And the discussion from page 13 in Magic is specifically about Magic Staffs (it's from the box by the same name)

Captain-Captain 02-26-2010 03:22 PM

Re: Can a Mage Do the Physical Part of a Required Ritual while Holding a Staff w/2 Ha
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by weby (Post 941752)
But bagpipes do usually give bonus to intimidation rolls.. :)

Not when a timid woodland rabbit rushes in to rescue that old lady in the plaid skirt from this horrible monster...


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