2.0 Covenant Design Thread

Okay, I think I've finally tracked down what I hope is an acceptable place to put the covenant.

It's just a little north of Herrera del Duque (the coordinates, if you want to look on GoogleEarth, is 3917'45.69" N, 501'43.70" W. I have no idea how old the "castle" that's there now is. One page, I think, said like 1873, another said 12th or 14th century. Neither my French nor my Spanish is what it used to be. The castle itself is called "Palacio de Cijara."

It's right on the Guadiana, the major river that goes from east to west through the region, so it should (may) provide some commerce if we need it to. Not particularly mountainous, and if I'm reading it right the river itself isn't much, but it looks pretty substantial (about a quarter mile across) where the castle is.

Pros, from my point of view:
[]50 years ago, the border between Al-Andalus and Castile passed less than ten miles to the east; "today" it's about 35 miles to the southwest, placing us square in land that was taken by the Christians since the covenant was founded.[/]
[]It's in wine country, being part of the Ribera de Guadiana DO; good wine, but not great wine, which would give the covenant an advantage if we go with the Regional Produce Boon.[/]
[]The area looks like it's pretty well forested; the area around the castle has some cover, and the other side of the river looks like some pretty heavy growth. So, plenty of lumber for building stuff, blowing stuff up, practicing your Herbam, etc.[/]

[]Being right on a major river, it's going to be hard to put up misdirection defences along the lines of The Shrouded Glen. A quick thumb through Iberia seems to indicate that the openness is pretty common there, though. On the plus side, if we wanted Phoenix to be something akin to a sanctuary, where Christians, Moors,and Jews all feel welcome, we'd want the place to be findable, right?[/]

But I think this is as good a place as any for it.

Looks good to me.
Seconded , if we are voting.

Same thing here.

I think you guys should to like Peregrine and I did, and post some boons/hooks you'd be interested in, selecting 1 of each in the process. This would at least speed things up.

And I'll try to think about those build points once I find the time and energy.

[size=150]Being a submission for Boons and Hooks for the Covenant of the Phoenix, in the Tribunal of Iberia[/size]

I've gone through the Covenants book and compiled a list of Boons and Hooks for troupe-al approval. Basically, took my list that I've worked on, and added a bunch of stuff from The Fixer's post, threw in some other suggestions, and tweaked it until I got it to balance (12 points in Hooks, 12 points in Boons – coincidentally, an auspicious number in Hermetic numerology, so to speak).

Covenant base (for four magi, the founding magi):
[]Aura 3[/]
[]Somewhat removed[/]
[]Basic defenses[/]
[]4 labs[/]
[]4 grogs[/]
[]8 covenfolk[/]
[]No exotic specialists[/]
[]Living conditions: Aging modifers +1 for magi, +0 for others.[/]

Governance style: Autocracy (with regards to covenfolk) (p. 17, inset)
Hermetic Governance: Democracy (p. 30)
Residents: Peasants (p. 17)

Major Boons/Hooks are in boldface.

[]Aura (x2): raising the Aura to +5 (p.6-7). This is almost mandatory :smiley: [/]
[]Healthy feature (p. 8 ) x3. The wine produced by the covenant from the magical grapevines, when consumed over long periods of time in the covenant, has unexpectedly beneficial results for the residents. Probably a combination of magical wine and the effects of the regio.[/]
[]Inhuman residents:(p. 18). Rereading the description, it occurs to me that you can only take this once, and I was thinking we'd have ghosts and the grapevines. So I'm combining the two. For “Ghosts”: any covenfolk (or magi, or visitor, what have you) who dies in the regio is bound to the covenant and will continue (or at least, try) to serve the covenant in some way – I'm looking at you, Nearly Headless Nick. For Grapevines: I'm liking Amul's idea that the covenfolk think of them as “people” and not “irritating talking plants.” Maybe they even give them names...like Audrey II.[/]
[]Regio (p. 7). The covenant is actually located in a magic regio with a Magic 5 Aura. The main entrance (that the covenant knows about) is the manor house in the outside world. Perhaps the landscape in the regio echoes (but doesn't necessarily mirror) the outside – maybe a magical river or road where the river is, perhaps the trees are magical in nature (and maybe some may be enlightened). There are almost certainly many more entrances to the regio than ours, and there is a lot about the regio to discover...or to have discover us. I'm kinda picturing a pocket dimension like the one the Bazaar gave to Aahz and Skeeve rent-free...which shows how scary it might turn out being.[/]
[]Strong Community (p. 18). This, to me, makes sense because of the extremely small population.[/]
[]Vis Grant (p. 16). Mainly because I like the idea of all the magi getting x pawns of vis a year, especially if the covenant has two, three, or four steady sources of vis.[/]
[]Wealth (p. 16). The exceptional quality of the covenant's wine means we can sell it for a healthy amount. And maybe the talking grapevines can convince the mundane plants to work harder for us.[/]

[]Contested resources (p. 16). One of our vis sources must be won in a contest with someone or something. If need be, we can take this multiple times to make up for hooks that get vetoed or balance out boons that get added.[/]
[]Demonic Interest (p. 23). Dealing with Rafus has only whetted the Infernal's appetite. And they are interested in seducing other magi across the Tribunal.[/]
[]Divided loyalty (p. 19). Christian vs. Muslim vs. Jew. Not outright warfare or hostility (hopefully), but very cliquish. Combined with Strong Community, this almost sounds like the covenfolk may be more loyal to their group than to the covenant at times.[/]
[]Faerie Court (p. 23). Because Faerie Courts are cool. And it could make an awesome source of storylines.[/]
[]Gender Imbalance (p. 19). I think we've pretty much all decided to go with this one.[/]
[]Haunted (by ghosts of the solders lost in battles in the area) (p. 10). Different from the Inhuman Residents above, in that these ghosts have no loyalty to the Covenant. They're just ghosts of soldiers lost in battles in the area, and maybe were drawn here by the magic Aura. It would be interesting to try to exorcise these ghosts without impacting the others.[/]
[]Illusory Resources (p.17): Some of the resources we're supposed to have were actually negotiated by magi who were lost at the Battle of Las Navas de Telosa. Since those magi are no longer around, the other side no longer feels bound to honor the agreement. It might be a Story to try to either enforce the agreement or negotiate a new one.[/]
[]Regional Produce (p. 17): Since we already have the gossiping grapevines, it stands to reason that we would have a pretty decent vineyard as well, with some outstanding Spanish wine (guaranteed to loosen the tongue). [/]

Note that this is (probably) not a final list. I just wanted to throw a submission out for us to work on, hopefully have something done by Friday. I'm hoping that the final product will look a lot like this, but shrug We'll see. (edited the title, because apparently the Powers that Be think that 64 characters is all that anyone would ever need)

(edited 3 Feb to change the cause of the Healthy Feature Boon)

My preference is for the +03 Aging Roll Bonus to come from the one thing.
You need to use it for a full year to get the benefit (as per core rules).
My thought was that it could be a particular type of wine , or a select section of the vineyard produces grapes that give the benefit.
The grapes are usually processed , so the benefit is not known , except possibly by a few peasants.

Noble rot
This is simply player preference impacting on the game , as there is a local dessert wine i particularly like.
De Bortoli Noble One Botrytis Semillon.
(too bad my cardiologist told me "alcohol is poison" , so i cannot have it anymore) :frowning:

All of this sounds very fine to me.

I especially love the "ghosts" idea, this is awesome :smiley:
The gravepines-covenfolks thing is fun, too :smiley:

You've got my vote!

If i add a Mentem requisite , Serrano should be able to clothe ghosts as well! :mrgreen:

This actually makes sense...especially given that we already have magical grapevines. It makes sense that wine made from magic grapes would have an unexpectedly beneficial benefit to those who drink it over the long term.

I'll make the edit in the Submission.

Been thinking (and granted, I've not played 5th ed that much, so this might not work)...but I still like the idea of JeanMichelle's mirror that he had in v1. Any reason the entrance to the Regio can't be through the looking glass?

I think that might only be an issue if anything were to happen to Celestria.

Yup, it is quite original.

2 possibilities:

  • The normal regio entrance is difficult to perceive (like, there's the mundane plane and the lvl 5 regio without anything in between)
  • The normal regio entrance is secluded and difficult to reach or traverse (like, it is on a cliff, or a way fraught with peril)

So it was deemed easier to just create the mirror, allowing easy transport to the magi and servants, as well as to change the point of entrance to the covenant. A ReCo(Te, He, An, Vi) effect did the rest.
Another possibility is an item that take us through the magic realm although (noble parma) I have no idea if this is possible through standard hermetic magic, nor what the final level will be.

THE problem with this, of course, is warping. Unless it's a kind of Hermes Portal, I don't see us getting away with it hermetically. Of course, it can be deemed a non-hermetic item, although this seems a little too much like handwaving

Unless the item's creator (angel, devil, magic being, fairie) hasn't been paid the full price for it yet, and my come any day to demand it (HOOK).



Here's an idea.

A regio is normally accessible "by foot", which leaves it somewhat vulnerable..

What is, in order to be secure, the funders secured a bargain with some powerful being who created the regio for them (or allowed them to live in it), with its only entrances being a handfull of such mirrors? You can add that price thing. There's also the fact that there may exist mirrors the magi are not aware of (although that is a separate hook), and that the entity may (or not) be able to create more.
It can also be more or less directly connected to the regio and its inhabitants, such as through a conscious space boon: Maybe the entity became the regio.

Isn't there a regio , accessible by mirror , where you have to exchange people?
For any who want to leave , the same number have to replace them?
A Faerie Bargain , iirc.

Or maybe the mirror isn't the regio entrance itself, but merely shows you where it is? What if the entrance isn't visible if you look right at it, but only if you see its reflection in a mirror, or something you see out of the corner of your eye, or stumble through when it's dark or your eyes are closed. And the covenant founders built the house around the entrance, and put the mirror on the wall facing the entrance, and you have to back through it or sidle through sideways or something.


My 300 point contribution to the covenant's point pool. I hope I'm doing this right. (And I'll try to come up with the 150 points that Cygna brings with her this weekend...am I correct in understanding that this could be 150 build points in library items, enchanted items, or specialists? And that one doesn't need to pay for characters that are actually written up?)

[td]One extra base lab[/td][/tr]
[td]Enhancements to magi's labs[/td][/tr][/table]
[td][u]Vis Sources[/u][/td][/tr]
[td]3 Mentem: grape leaves(?) from enchanted vines[/td][/tr][/table]
[td][u]Vis Stock[/u][/td][/tr]
[td]24 Mentem[/td][/tr]
[td]24 Vim[/td][/tr][/table]
[td][u]Lab Texts[/u][/td][/tr]
[td]Aegis of the Hearth (ReVi 40)[/td][/tr]
[td]Cheating the Reaper (CrCo 30)[/td][/tr]
[td]The Chirurgeon's Healing Touch (CrCo 20)[/td][/tr]
[td]Circular Ward against Demons (ReVi 30)[/td][/tr]
[td]Demon's Eternal Oblivion (PeVi 40)[/td][/tr]
[td]Incantation of the Body Made Whole (CrCo 40)[/td][/tr]
[td]Piercing the Magic Veil (InVi 20)[/td][/tr]
[td]Wizard's Communion (MuVi 20)[/td][/tr][/table]
[td]Herbam summa: L 20, Q 11[/td][/tr]
[td]Mentem Summa: L 20, Q 11[/td][/tr]
[td]Magic Theory (Regiones): L 6 Q 11[/td][/tr]
[td]The Three Faces of the Divine: Theology: L 5 Q 7[/td][/tr][/table]
[td]Herbam: Q 7[/td][/tr]
[td]Mentem Summa: Q 10[/td][/tr][/table]
[td]Vineyard manager[/td][/tr][/table]

I actually really like this idea. It doesn't necessarily have to be a person exchange though. Indiana Jones style, each magus has a stone status of perfect similarness inside the regio. When you step through, the closest matching item comes out. Currently, the only one that has it is the only surviving Magus. The standard way to gain access if for the magi to cast a Creo Terram ritual creating an exact stone statue in your likeness within the regio. Thus, no consequences for crossing into it, but it has to have been "pre-approved" by someone already with access.

And here's the Hook part - if there's not a matching item of similar likeness, then the next closest thing is pulled out of the regio and thrust out. Which might be an ogre. Or a Human Venus Flytrap. Or, the Erlking's 2nd underling that was lost centuries ago(very VERY powerful faerie). So the regio's mirror entries would require constant guarding and alertness. The problem is, besides the one or two we know... just how many mirrors provide entries into the regio? :smiley:

Anyways, either way - I think the Boons and Hooks already outlined fit very well. I also like sticking to 12 - too many more or less and we'll spend too much of our time dealing with the Hooks instead of our own character foibles. Here are two alternate minor Boon and Hooks if anyone likes them more.

Minor Site Boon - Vivid Environment - What keeps the three major religious factions - Christian, Jew, and Muslim - from being at each other throats? The whole Unified but Contested made me more thing there is a LOT of infighting between the three groups for the resources of the Covenant and the lands (or Magi's time), but they instantly band together as one whenever outside influences outside of religious missives come a-knocking. Protecting and allying with the known enemy against the unknown. So why do they stick together? Because the land itself if perfect. Of course, it would be better to keep it all for oneself(my faction is the best), but better to have some than none at all (we three are already sharing, you don't get any).

Minor Surroundings Hook - Ford - Easy back and forth, greater exploration, and another source of income. Also, anything mundanely necesary or tradable comes to us on its own instead of needing to ship out to them. But definitely a major increase of foot and river traffic.

Oh... I'm not an active player yet. Do I get 300 and 150 too? Or, should the current "active" players get 300 which sets a cap of what's being dumped into the covenant, but newcomers use 150 pts to build what they're bringing to the covenant and their men/grogs/specialists?

(Insomnia + bickering dogs at 12.30 am + having to get up for work at 4 am = silly post titles)

Anyway, here's the 150 points of “personal gear and minions” that Cygna brings to the covenant.

Vis Stocks: 5 pawns of Mentem vis. (cost: 1 pt)

[td][u]Lab Texts[/u][/td]
[td][u]TeFo Lvl[/u][/td]
[td]Constructing the Memory Palace[/td]
[td]CrMe 20[/td]
[td]TMRE p. 27[/td][/tr]
[td]Doublet of Impenetrable Silk[/td]
[td]MuAn 15[/td]
[td]Ars5 p. 118[/td][/tr]
[td]Enhance the Memory Palace[/td]
[td]CrMe 20[/td]
[td]TMRE p. 26[/td][/tr]
[td]Friendly Voices[/td]
[td]InMe 30[/td]
[td]see below[/td][/tr]
[td]Form of the Melancholic Heartbeast[/td]
[td]MuAn 20[/td]
[td]HoH: MC p. 36[/td][/tr]
[td]Fortification of the Memory Palace[/td]
[td]ReMe 35[/td]
[td]TMRE p. 27[/td][/tr]
[td]Frosty Breath of the Spoken Lie[/td]
[td]InMe 20[/td]
[td]Ars5 p. 149[/td][/tr]
[td]Lay to Rest the Haunting Spirit[/td]
[td]PeMe 40[/td]
[td]Ars5 p. 150[/td][/tr]
[td]Memory Palace of the Sage[/td]
[td]CrMe 25[/td]
[td]TMRE p. 27[/td][/tr]
[td]Peering Into the Mortal Mind[/td]
[td]InMe 30[/td]
[td]Ars5 p. 149[/td][/tr]
[td]The Shrouded Glen[/td]
[td]ReMe 40[/td]
[td]Ars5 p. 152[/td][/tr]
[td]Vision of the Haunting Spirits[/td]
[td]MuMe 40[/td]
[td]Ars5 p. 150[/td][/tr][/table]
[td][u]Arts Summae[/u][/td]
[td]Information Acquisition: Sources and Methods[/td]
[td]The Winter's Chill[/td]
[td]The Babble Within Thought[/td]
Enchanted Items
16 pts - Wand of Demon's Eternal Oblivion: PeVi 25, 24 uses per day, +20 Penetration. Crafted of red coral. Unbeknownst to Cygna, a fraction of the vis used to enchant the item was Infernal.

Friendly Voices (InMe 30)
Range: Eye; Duration: Sun; Target: Individual
This spell puts the caster and the target in direct mental communication. While the caster cannot read the caster's mind, they can conduct conversations as though speaking to one another.
(Base 15, +1 Eye, +2 Sun)