Hi, I'm generally a forum lurker, but this bugged me a bit and I wanted to see what other people think. According to my math no Magus coming out of apprenticeship should have a score of less than 5 in at least 7-8 of their arts and 10+ in at least 2. This all comes down to the rules in Covenants on books.
Let me preface why I think the rules for what is considered a serviceable book and what is a "sound summae" is ridiculous. A "sound" summae is a book with a quality of 28-level. That means your average Com+0 would have to have a skill of 44 in an art to write a book worth having. So a person who focuses their whole life on one art could maybe write a bottom level sound summae. Even a legendary writer Com +5 Good Teacher needs a 28 skill to write a sound summae. So to write a passable book you need slightly less quality 26-level. But that still leaves our average Magus needing a 40 and our legendary writer a 24. So still a lifetime of work for an average Magus to write a passable Summae. Anything below that is called a vain book and is usually cheap to obtain and probably plentiful in the orders libraries. So if a mid level vein book is say quality 20-level, that means you have a plentiful number of books that can take you from 0 to 5 in every art in one season. That is 15 seasons, or one season a year of apprenticeship with cheap easily obtained books. Now figure the average Magus uses his lab 2 seasons a year, has to teach him one, and one "free season" if I was a Magus you could bet your behind I would be making my apprentice read those damn books. Who wouldn't. So you would end up coming out of apprenticeship. Not including the other experience gained from exposure and teaching. A Magus out the door should be far more experienced and powerful if this is what is considered a bad summae. And God forbid you have 1-2 Sound books or even Good books in your collection. My point is, I think that Covenants overplays what is a good book. I thing the quality-level ratio is far to high to justify the training available in the Order given it has been around a few hundred years and has time to accumulate more than it's share of mid level "vain" books to circulate. Mid you an average Magus would need an art at 28 to write a quality 15 level 5 summea. But I am curious to hear what you guys think.