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Old 01-05-2014, 11:58 PM   #1
Icelander
 
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Default RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

I really like the rituals from Thaumatology, but am trying out RPM for our Monster Hunters game, instead of going with the older Path magic.

How compatible are the rituals and rules? They use largely the same concepts and terms, but the rules are not quite the same. This troubles me, as that's just the kind of set-up that causes assumption clashes.

I want the PCs to be able to use many of the rituals from Thaumatology under RPM rules. How much, if anything, do I have to change, adjudicate or decide?

Has anyone gone through them and considered what the energy cost of each of them ought to be in RPM and which Paths they use?
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Old 01-06-2014, 12:10 AM   #2
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

Assumptions on how the spells are cast won't change. RPM uses Path magic (energy accumulation model) straight up for the actual act of casting. Things like time spent, the need for consecrated space, even the energy gathering rolls, are all identical or near enough that it doesn't matter (RPM hides this by assuming every caster is Adept, but if you make all Path magic casters Adept, or none of the RPM casters, the rules look exactly the same).

The biggest difference is, of course, the paths themselves, the energy costs (RPM is vastly more expensive than path magic under the energy accumulation model, easily getting into hundreds of energy points), and the fact that magery grants free energy points. I suggest rebuilding the rituals under the RPM system to derive your costs.

EDIT: Though I'm not sure why you'd do this. The point of RPM is to take the feel of the path magic system, and then to take the flexibility of the realm system and apply it to it. If you're going to have the players use only the rituals from the Path magic system, you might as well discard RPM, as RPM using only the path magic rituals is essentially just path magic.
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Old 01-06-2014, 12:20 AM   #3
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mailanka View Post
Assumptions on how the spells are cast won't change. RPM uses Path magic (energy accumulation model) straight up for the actual act of casting. Things like time spent, the need for consecrated space, even the energy gathering rolls, are all identical or near enough that it doesn't matter (RPM hides this by assuming every caster is Adept, but if you make all Path magic casters Adept, or none of the RPM casters, the rules look exactly the same).
This was my impression, but thanks for confirming that. I haven't yet had time to go through everything carefully, as the game kind of just happened and I bought the Monster Hunters and RPM books during play, while creating characters on the fly.

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The biggest difference is, of course, the paths themselves, the energy costs (RPM is vastly more expensive than path magic under the energy accumulation model, easily getting into hundreds of energy points), and the fact that magery grants free energy points. I suggest rebuilding the rituals under the RPM system to derive your costs.
It was this effort that I had hoped someone had already carried out for me. Things like Succor, Vitality, Evil Eye, Fertility, Hunter's Blessing, etc. are iconic enough rituals that one imagines that they are often needed by GMs and players.

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Originally Posted by Mailanka View Post
EDIT: Though I'm not sure why you'd do this. The point of RPM is to take the feel of the path magic system, and then to take the flexibility of the realm system and apply it to it. If you're going to have the players use only the rituals from the Path magic system, you might as well discard RPM, as RPM using only the path magic rituals is essentially just path magic.
I never said that those rituals would be the only possible rituals. On the other hand, they do represent common fictional or pseudo-historical ideas of rituals, so I thought that at least some of them would be common among ritual magicians of a Hermetic tradition.

And the way they are written up in Thaumatology is evocative and interesting, so I'd want to be able to use them as written if possible. This might, of course, entail new calculations for costs.
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Old 01-06-2014, 07:44 AM   #4
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mailanka View Post
Assumptions on how the spells are cast won't change. RPM uses Path magic (energy accumulation model) straight up for the actual act of casting. Things like time spent, the need for consecrated space, even the energy gathering rolls, are all identical or near enough that it doesn't matter (RPM hides this by assuming every caster is Adept, but if you make all Path magic casters Adept, or none of the RPM casters, the rules look exactly the same).

The biggest difference is, of course, the paths themselves, the energy costs (RPM is vastly more expensive than path magic under the energy accumulation model, easily getting into hundreds of energy points), and the fact that magery grants free energy points. I suggest rebuilding the rituals under the RPM system to derive your costs.

EDIT: Though I'm not sure why you'd do this. The point of RPM is to take the feel of the path magic system, and then to take the flexibility of the realm system and apply it to it. If you're going to have the players use only the rituals from the Path magic system, you might as well discard RPM, as RPM using only the path magic rituals is essentially just path magic.
This is interesting to me. My goal is to somewhat remove the flexibility from RPM for PCs, but still allow the creation of new rituals in a consistent way.

I like Book Magic using effect shaping for secret magic campaigns. I like the feel of PCs searching for and deciphering musty, occult tomes as a path to new and greater powers. My problem has been that there aren't enough rituals.

Creating new rituals as a GM, or allowing PCs to research new rituals, has required just eyeballing the default penalties and ritual times. Now I think there may be a way build a system for determining more consistent defaults and times for new Path/Book rituals based on their costs in RPM. It may not be able to 'reverse engineer' all the rituals from Thaumatology perfectly, but it could give me some firmer ground to stand on when creating new rituals.
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:51 AM   #5
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

Hmm... No, I don't have them, but I could certainly convert them if you would like me to. These past couple of days, I have been working hard on restyling my complete conversion of GURPS Magic to GURPS RPM as well as working out the kinks in what I had done before.
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:55 AM   #6
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

Quote:
Originally Posted by Icelander View Post
I really like the rituals from Thaumatology, but am trying out RPM for our Monster Hunters game, instead of going with the older Path magic.
You won't be sorry, though I do suggest that if you're players are used to the "slow" nature of spells in Path/Book magic that you disallow Ritual Adept - at least to start. I've submitted a Pyramid article that will go into some detail on making ritual path magic "effect-shaping," but that won't be out for months.

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Originally Posted by Icelander View Post
How compatible are the rituals and rules? They use largely the same concepts and terms, but the rules are not quite the same. This troubles me, as that's just the kind of set-up that causes assumption clashes.
Ritual path magic is better. Path/Book magic makes some arbitrary assumptions (which isn't bad mind you, just different), but ritual path magic does not. You get what you pay for energy-wise. In the long run, that's just way better. Once your players get used to how the RPM system works (And it is pretty easy), you as the GM wll be able to do all kinds of fun things that work in the confines of how you veiw the setting you are running.

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Originally Posted by Icelander View Post
I want the PCs to be able to use many of the rituals from Thaumatology under RPM rules. How much, if anything, do I have to change, adjudicate or decide?
You'd need to rewrite them, but for the most part, that'd be fairly easy.

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Originally Posted by Icelander View Post
Has anyone gone through them and considered what the energy cost of each of them ought to be in RPM and which Paths they use?
I did Succor here (as a example). And if you pick one ritual you like I'll show you how to convert it in this thread so you have an idea of how to do it yourself.
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:50 AM   #7
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

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Ritual path magic is better. Path/Book magic makes some arbitrary assumptions (which isn't bad mind you, just different), but ritual path magic does not. You get what you pay for energy-wise. In the long run, that's just way better. Once your players get used to how the RPM system works (And it is pretty easy), you as the GM wll be able to do all kinds of fun things that work in the confines of how you veiw the setting you are running.
I don't really agree with that. Some effects become prohibitively expensive for no good reason, and you don't get the thematic cohesion that you get with path magic. Path magic is arbitrary and, like you imply, that can sometimes be better. So I certainly wouldn't call it "way better." But it does have some advantages, namely that you can expand it in a consistent manner with rules that you can explain to the players, rather than just guessing. If you're looking for expandability and improvisation, then RPM is the system for you. If you want the specific, "real world occultism" feel that path magic excels at and you don't mind losing that flexibility, I think you're just better off with path magic.

(Sort of a case of "The tool designed for the job is better than the tool designed for many jobs, unless you have other jobs in mind")
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Old 01-06-2014, 12:07 PM   #8
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

I'm going to answer these briefly, but I don't want to derail the thread.

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Originally Posted by Mailanka View Post
I don't really agree with that. Some effects become prohibitively expensive for no good reason, and you don't get the thematic cohesion that you get with path magic. Path magic is arbitrary and, like you imply, that can sometimes be better.
And I must disagree with your assertion. I'm not sure what you are specifically referring to, but this really isn't the general case. Namely because you seem to be overlooking Alternative Greater Effects on p. 13 of Thaumatology: Ritual Path Magic (which a lot of people seem to do). If Healing others in the campaign world is always a Lesser effect, then first aid magic becomes more common (and cheaper!). For instance, in a TL8 world a healing spell can do up to 2d before becoming a Greater effect, when you switch that assumption off, you have no cap.

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So I certainly wouldn't call it "way better." But it does have some advantages, namely that you can expand it in a consistent manner with rules that you can explain to the players, rather than just guessing. If you're looking for expandability and improvisation, then RPM is the system for you. If you want the specific, "real world occultism" feel that path magic excels at and you don't mind losing that flexibility, I think you're just better off with path magic.
I don't really like "reasonless" or "boundless" magic. So it might be my personal preferences at work here, but if you want "Real world occultism" the very first thing you do is ban Ritual Adept, remove conditional spells, and require the use of some of the "rules of magic" (sympathy, contagion, etc.). You're looking at at least 5 minutes for "medium" size spells, 1 minute for "tiny" size spells, and hours for "big" spells. How is this not modeled like real magic (at least what I know of it)?

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(Sort of a case of "The tool designed for the job is better than the tool designed for many jobs, unless you have other jobs in mind")
Yes and no. RPM is a ton easier to customize than just about any other magic system GURPS has to offer. There is no tacking on rules to make it work. It works out of the box and you can simply remove some bits or enhance others that are already built into the system to customize it to your campaign or style of play.

Again, this is all in my opinion, and I've played with just about every magic system GURPS has had to offer - none of them seem to match the flexibility, utility, and adaptability of ritual path magic.
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Old 01-06-2014, 03:05 PM   #9
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

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Originally Posted by Mailanka View Post
(Sort of a case of "The tool designed for the job is better than the tool designed for many jobs, unless you have other jobs in mind")
QFT

I agree with Mailinka that calling RPM “vastly superior” to Path Magic is hyberbole at best. Certainly, it’s your preference; and it does feature some improvements that I wouldn’t mind back-porting into Path Magic such as some of the simplifications to energy costs. Heck, I wouldn’t even mind using something like RPM as a basis for inventing new rituals for Path Magic. But as for RPM’s supposed advantage in providing consistency that Path Magic lacks? If you treat that consistency as a mandate rather than a rule of thumb, the result can end up more like a strait-jacket.

Still, it would be interesting to see someone go through the various Path Magic Rituals and write up what Paths and energy costs would be needed under RPM’s assumptions.
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Old 01-06-2014, 03:14 PM   #10
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Default Re: RPM Magic and Thaumatology Path/Book Magic rituals

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Hmm... No, I don't have them, but I could certainly convert them if you would like me to. These past couple of days, I have been working hard on restyling my complete conversion of GURPS Magic to GURPS RPM as well as working out the kinks in what I had done before.
I would certainly like them converted and, in fact, am astonished that that exists nowhere. Initially, I believed it would certainly be a part of the full RPM supplement, when the system was expanded and when it wasn't I thought it had been submitted as a Pyramid article. No dice.
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