A Hedgier Order

Actually, HoH: S briefly mentions that the only recorded use of "Join or Die" was against a Hedge Wizard named Varstus who was described as being a master of Sympathetic Magic. Varstus took the latter option, but perhaps his followers taught Flambeau some of his secrets after joining the order?

Bjornaer, Bonisagus, Criamon, Jerbiton, Mercere, Merinita & Verditius as written would have had little use for the Penetration ability after all...

Flambeau hunted and killed over fifty hedge wizards. 5th edition cannon also includes the battle at Varidian's Tomb (Ancient Magic).
IMS, the lineage of necromancers that still dwells there (in cooperation with Roman Jerbiton magi) have spread the tale that he stalked and slaughtered them with glee. However, other legends state that the fifty hedge wizards he slew were all hags and infernalists and evil warlocks.
The number is likely an exaggeration, but I doubt that Flambeau's recruitment drive was as peaceful as some may claim. Fear of Flambeau is what caused many wizards to join the nascent Order.

He's just a bad mother f...
Shut your mouth!
But I'm talking about Flambeau.
Oh, then we can dig it!

He's a complicated man 8)

YR7, I love this idea, and the way you're looking at running it. I wish I could play in the saga, it sounds like a whole lot of fun.

I have a few thoughts to add to yours and others' on the topic of what I imagine the various Founders contributed to Magic Theory. This is just me ruminating; I don't think I'm revealing secret author knowledge about anything...

  • Bjornaer also contributed the sensory spell parameters, and since they are mostly used with Intellego, I imagine her magic was instrumental in developing that Technique.

  • The Columbae brought Form-based wards to the Order, but I imagine there were also inefficient ReVi wards that Bonisagus developed while researching the Parma Magica, perhaps requiring an Ability score, or Rituals adapted from Mercurian rites. Bonisagus already had a bunch of these rites when he started working on Magic Theory, before he met the other Founders. I think Bonisagus also developed how to use vis with magic, probably based on all the Mercurian rites he eventually got to see (from Flambeau, Guernicus, Mercere, Merinita, Tytalus, and Tremere).

  • In my version of the Founding, Diedne's contributions were mostly with the Art of Vim, specifically those guidelines that affect supernatural creatures. Her spells fell out of favor after the Schism War, but I imagine the CrAn(Vi) guidelines that summon magical beasts come from her. Spontaneous magic was her big contribution, though.

  • I picture Flambeau's tradition as having formulaic spells developed from a few Order of Mercury-based rituals combined with some knowledge of elementalist summoning. As far as influencing Magic Theory, in my opinion Flambeau brought spell mastery to the round table, as well as a bunch of formulaic Ignem spells. Spell mastery is huge. I also imagine Flambeau didn't have many followers at first, and so his House was very focused on recruiting.

  • Guorna the Fetid contributed the first longevity ritual, though for my saga I think it was a less efficient one than the one magi have later, in that it didn't stop apparent aging at all.

  • Mercere's big contribution, I think, was a number of Mercurian rites, including the Wizard's Communion. I don't imagine he could cast most of them, as they were really high level, but Bonisagus could probably incorporate them into Magic Theory without actually learning them.

  • I imagine much of the Order's Animal and Herbam magic came from Merinita. In fact, I would argue that very little of Animal came from Bjornaer, since her magic was non-Roman and thus not as easily integrated.

  • Trianoma taught Bonisagus her shapechanging magic and hexes, which probably developed most of the Arts of Muto and Perdo.

  • I'd say Tytalus brought spells he learned from Guorna to fill in the Arts of Corpus and Rego, and also contributed insights into InVi he gained from Pralix. Tremere acquired Mercurian rites from the necromantic Dacian cults, making him worthy of being named a Founder in his own right.

  • Verditius taught the Order to make enchanted devices and talismans, and how to gain Shape and Material bonuses.

Such a fascinating topic! :slight_smile:

While giggling in fits at the Shaft parody, I have to dispute your assertion about the existence of Fifth Edition cannon. :stuck_out_tongue:

(Well, okay, there is one reference that I know of, but it's kind of an in-joke.)

Kind of like Craft-Hex Toys (painful ones)?
There are in-jokes scattered throughout fifth edition. Can you spot them all?

double post

After all, everyone builds up a skill to oppose something that doesn't actually exist yet, right? Look at the magical defenses available to hedge traditions. Which of them are affected by Penetration again? Might scores were the only sort of magical defense that penetration might have availed against "back in the day". Doubtless there were techniques for overcoming creatures' might. Mostly, hedge magical techniques don't seem to quite work that way, though.

I think its entirely plausible that the techniques for overcoming the Parma Magica were developed after Parma came into existance. You are arguing some semantic quibble over game mechanics terminology. My point is not that no one before Flambeau ever had a way of piercing magical might. My point was (and is) that just because the Parma Magica is merely good now does not mean it wasn't godlike when it came out. Whatever techniques most magi had for penetrating magic resistance at the time SUCKED. Unless you were trying to lay curses on faeries or something, there wasn't much use for it.

Summoners, Beast Masters concentrating on Magical Beasts, Magical Beigns with powers intended to be able to be used on other Magical Beings, Infernalists, and basically any form of magic that would require the caster to penetrate the might score of their target.

There was quite the need for Penetration before there ever was Parma Magica.

Except that a lot of the hedge magic rules don't actually work that way. Summoning scores need to exceed Might, not strictly penetrate. Controlling needs to penetrate, but they have a non "penetration ability" based ways of doing that like using summoning containers.

Besides, you are still arguing a made up point. I never said that Flambeau invented the idea of penetrating magic resistance. I said that it was entirely plausible that Parma Magica was awesome sauce incarnate in that day and that Flambeau's research is one reason why its not now. Its also entirely possible that "Penetration" was learned in some fashion other than as an "Arcane Ability", which would have made it potentially more difficult then than now.

Just because cannons existed before tanks doesn't mean anti tank guns weren't a necessary invention once there were tanks.

It's all good broseph. It is part of 5th edition cannon, so you are correct. I am the heratic. I disregard much of the background and history in the Flambeau chapter of Societas. I prefer using the old-school version :slight_smile:

Still, it simply doesn't seem plausible to me whatsoever. Penetration is just ubiquitously useful. Magic creatures, with no knowledge of magic or arcane lore, can take Penetration with their powers. Various forms of Hedge Magic do indeed require penetration to be effective. Personally, I prefer Erik's idea that Flambeau brough Spell Mastery to the table. Perhaps he invented Penetration Mastery?

But it is all up to your own tastes, and we obbviously have different ideas. For example, I think Parma Magica is still awesome sauce. People just don't take their scores up high enough. By the time you are 10 years out of gauntlet, you should have a Parma of at least 4, and at least another two points every ten years thereafter. Elder magi in their 70's should have a Parma of at least 10 or more.

And if you don't, then don't go starting trouble with the local dragon :wink:

Oh, its definitely useful. You only need one game in which one PC buys it up to 10 and the others leave it low to see the impact that has on scenario balance. You could argue that Trianoma had Parma 10 and that's why she laughed off all these powerful wizards she was recruiting.

I do think everyone using the Penetration ability is a game mechanics conceit more than an accurate description of "in character" practice. There's a point where its not worth the effort of creating a separate mechanism to explain different ways of achieving the same effect. I don't believe that an ancient Etruscan spirit's "Penetration" ability is actually the same thing that a Hermetic magus is studying just because the game mechanic labels them the same. The spirit's "penetration" may well be a manifestation of its raw power or a quirk of its nature rather than an expression of studied skill.

Some pre hermetic wizards practices the application of magical effects to Might possessing entities, but quite a lot more didn't. Of those that did, I suspect that quite a lot of their "penetration" practices had more do rites, materia, and the like than with a rigorously studied skill.

I just realized that we forgot all about a major paradigm shif (:lol:, "paradigm" in this case refering to major mechanical changes). In Previous editions, Penetration fell under the category of "Talents". The division of Abilities into Talents, Skills, and Knowledges originates with Ars Magica. It is now a core feature of White Wolf games, but has been discarded from Ars Magica entirely. Talents could only be improved with Practice (Skills could use Practice or Training, Knowledges could use Taining or Teaching or Study, Casulal Knowledges could be improved with exposure, Arts were by Teaching or Study only).

So, really, I think that the idea wasn't that you would refer to your Penetration ability in character. Rather, it was just something you did, a Talent you had. But in 5th edition, you can now study Penetration from books, and books have subjects that you can refer to in or out of character. So perhaps Flambeau was the first one to codify in writing the processes and proceedures that everone took for granted and were utilizing unconsciously. Perhaps he is the first one to have achieved a high enough score in this unnamed talent to be able to teach his followers to have a high enough of a score that it was worthy of writing a book about. Whis his followers did (Ultor, from HoH-Societas, p. 9).

But this is tangential. The main point I wanted to stress is that Penetration in one form or another existed before and separate from Hermetic Magic, and that Hedge Wizards should be able to learn and use this ability.

This statement I certainly agree with, emphasis on "in one form or another." :smiling_imp: