A question about enchanted items

Hello, i read often but it's my first post.

It's a simple question but not covered in the book. Does enchanted items are affected in any way by hostiles auras ?

I'm asking this because in a game i'm playing we have a problem with a demon and, to me, it seem wrong to be able to affect it with magical items even if there's a really hostile aura.

Let's be a little extreme.
Imagine a group of mages raiding a cathedral with a divine aura of 6. It's a -18 to any magic rolls, but not with magical items ?

I'm confused, maybe i missed something.


Well it is a houserule but in our saga we ruled that an item must have a penetration equal or more than the malus of an aura. But if you are in a friendly aura your items penetration (even if it is normaly zero) is boosted!

The way I see it is that a magic item (not attuned to any other realm) has a base 0 penetration. That penetration is boosted/diminished by the effect of the aura. Why not?

It is however very easy to overlook bonuses and penalties but so long as you overlook them to the benefit of the players, everybody goes home happy.

The problem is that some effects don't require any penetration to work quite well (like a spell that create a earthquake) I don't think it could be as easy to do it in a mundane area versus let's say, the Vatican. ^^

I see the point but I was feeling that was way too easy to do theses impressives effect with just some seasons in a lab, in theses magical no-man's land.

I like it, it's simple and make magical items a little more difficult to come by if the main goal is to use them in hostile environment. I'll try to adopt this houserule with our saga.


No, I think you misunderstood my point. I didn't mean that the "effect" was diminished, only the penetration. The effect, penetration allowing, still goes off as designed. If the target has no might/parma, then the effect works.

It isn't. Sure the effects are the same - its a work/don't work kind of spell. And if you know how to cast it, you know how to cast it - regardless of malaural (new word?) effects. However, get anything slightly wrong... and boom, all those extra botch dice!

There is no magical no-mans land. Magic works pretty much everywhere. Its just that some areas the magic is less controllable because other forces are also at work.

You could argue that magic items, however have little trouble in these areas because they are kind of doing magic mechanically - exactly the same way every time, so exactly the same result every time. This is in contrast to a wizard doing magic who applies his 'art', intuition and human imperfection into his magic and generally does things slightly different every time. Note that mastered spells and cautious wizards (virtue) are often able to effectively ignore the irritants of an unfriendly aura in whole or part.

You could also look at the anti-penetrative malaural effects as being related to this. Because the caster has to focus that little bit harder to avoid the unnatural pulling of the other-magical (divine/infernal) effects on the spell, he loses some of his 'focus' as he attempts to penetrate and the effective penetration is lower than it would normally be. Magic items of course, don't focus at all, they just follow their normal set procedures and the normal result happens. Or alternatively, they follow their normal result and then the malaural conditions wear away at the effect reducing its strength (penetration).

Seasons in the lab represent forethought, planning and resources being used. Positive effects flowing from them should be encouraged, IMO.

Or you can house rule something. :slight_smile:

You're not confused, just inciteful in a way the writers did not address. Whether that was intentional or not is not the present issue.

It makes "a" sense to me to do it either way. In one paradigm, a magic device is hampered by divine auras (and aided in magical auras, etc etc?), but in another paradigm, a finished product is done with auras, and simply works the same, regardless.

Up to the SG, ultimately. Either way has pros/cons re characters, re game balance.

Hi Dalak!

First of all, welcome to the forum. Always great to get new posters onboard!

I agree with you that it is a very interesting question and I am glad you asked it. I havent given it much thought recently but I have also myself been trying to figure this out.

I agree with Cuchulainshound that it ends up with a choice of pardigms. For now I really havent chosen yet myself, but I know I better get around it before the magi of my saga gets around to making items of their own. The magic item we have had in play have been items with rather permanent effects - like a sword that weighed less or was sharper etc. - and with those I have made ingame descriptions of the magic being influenced - the very frail magi feeling the pull of the sword have troubles wielding it, but I havent really of yet translated it into rule mechanics. To anything more than mood-setting descriptions.

I am still very divided so I'l' follow this thread with an added interest. Thanks for bringing it up!


Having made many items with my Verditius, I have given it some thought....
In previous editions, there was a definate exclusion (IIRC) for magical devices versus auras.
The current RAW doesn't have any mention for this... but I might suggest the following if you feel that there should be a penalty...
Any effect in an item basically has a casting total. If the lab total exceeds the level, it usually manifests as Penetration. You can simply take the lab total, subtract/add the aura modifier. Thus it would look like this..

Pilum of fire in a Wand
uses per day-1 :+0
Penetration-20 :+10
(2 points per point above-unless your in Eriks game :wink: )
Total Level: 30

In your Divine Aura mentioned, the casting total would be dropped by 18. This would reduce the 'Casting' Total to 12. You could HR that since its coming from an item, the spell would fail, or you could rule that since the spell is within 10, it goes off (not recommended).
Of course it follows that the same item, with a different lab total..say..

Level 20
uses per day-1 +0
Penetration-60 : +30
Lab total: 50
Your reduction of 18 would lower the total to 32...the spell would go off..with a penetration of 24.

Now this does bring up other factors...

Uses per day-Unlimited: +10
Penetration:20 : +10
Lab total: 40

Subtracting the 18 from this drops the level down to 22. This only leaves 2 for things other than one casting per day. (there are other factors you need to consider and put in order of importance-triggers, concentration etc). I would rule here that you lose the Penetration, and get only three uses per day (instead of unlimited).
Spell would go off...No penetration, three times per day.

Of course you would have figure out whats right for you, but you need to list what an item would loose first, second etc..

I take it you like to play more...off the cuff Magi..???

I know my Verditius spends a LOT of time preparing and gathering resources to make and item. The whole process takes seasons worth of work and requires (in almost all cases) an expenditure of Vis.
I still have to take the same time raising my arts like other magi...I have to (unless its a lesser item-less powerful too) enchant the item..this takes two seasons...minimum. So basically I spend a year preparing an item to do an effect..but you don't want it to work? hehe In one of my games the starting Flambeau has casting totals of 40-50 for fire spells...
He certainly could get his spell off in the Divine aura mentioned...

This is a case for arguing against what I said above... :laughing:
Verditius items are highly coveted devices...WHY? maybe its because they aren't affected by auras that someone would pay so much for them...

Something to think about...

Thank you for the welcome !

Very interesting points of view we got here !

Personnaly I don't mind that magical items are comparativly strong but I was wondering if magical items are affected by auras when I saw another player pack-up Demon's Oblivion staves to fight a really nasty demon. He even consider to fight the demon on his domain, a powerful infernal regio. The fact is that player have a 'enchanting' bonisagus strong on vim. But he would have to be very lucky indeed to affect the target demon with it's demon oblivion if he cast only the spell. but with his staves... it's not challenging (enough) anymore.

I'm not against magical items (far from it :unamused: ), it's just that in infernal and divine auras, i feel that hermetic magic must be less powerful.