Adventures of Iron Magi Von Munchausen

I'm organizing an Ars Magica party for next Saturday the 16th. Everyone will bring a newly gauntleted Magus character to the event. I'll draw "challenges" out of a box and then the players will all advance their characters a few years and describe how their character will deal with the challenge. Then everyone drinks heartily to the character who creates the most entertaining and tasteful resolution to the issue and we pull out another challenge and advance the characters even further (with appropriate breaks for feasting and sobering up).

I'd like to tap the minds on this forum to help me come up with worthwhile challenges for the covenant. Here are a few that should give you an idea of what I'm thinking.

The aura of the covenant is sadly subject to astrological forces; in ten years time the aura will begin a 15 year journey around the seas of the world apparently all of the covenants sources of vis will cease to exist unless the covenant follows the aura on it's journey. Find a way to make the covenant mobile or move it into a fleet of magical ships.

The nearby Port city doesn't have much trade. Make it a powerful economic hub

The nearby noble is set to inherit many of the covenant's lands unless he is married before he is thirty. Find an extraordinary wife for the paranoid and meek twenty five year old who's only waiting to join the priesthood until he inherits the land.

In six years time the path of a solar eclipse will move across the landscape of Europe. Magi who can stay in center of the zone of total extinction can collect vis during the passage. Find a way to stay within the zone of total extinction for as long as possible (it moves at ~80 miles and hour and it lasts for approximately 20 minutes). The fewer other magi that are in the zne with you the more vis there will be for you to collect (this is cobbled from my remembrances from something in an older Ars Magica book,(at least four years in the past), does anyone remember where it was published?)

A might 50 faerie steals the harvest once every five years and leaves a gift in exchange. Next time make sure that she cant starve our serfs and tenants and do it in such a way that the covenant does not ever need to worry about the faerie again (killing her isn't necessarily going to solve the problem).

A might 50 demon is working to corrupt the merchants at the nearest port city. Dispose of the creature without letting it know who got rid of it.

The Necromancer emperor Genghis Khan is pushing his army of 100,000 zombies and sorcerers (that's Ars Goetia style sorcerers) across Asia. Stop the Zombie apocalypse before it reaches Europe.

Zombie mongols? Now THAT is a deviation from history! :laughing:

Other random stuff. Seems you are going for the Grand Stories here, so I will leave grog level adventures out and assume your covenant is fairly OK.

Carnac / Stonehenge / The Rhine Falls / Mont Blanc (depending on your location) has disappeared. Where it used to be, there is only a normal plain (no aura at all, a river in the case of the rhine) as if the thing had never been there. What has happened?

A war is about to fall on your doorstep. Crusade, Angevin-Capet war, reconquista.... whatever. Stop the crusade in your region before it destroys half your vis sources and creates famine for a 10 year period.

(This comes from another thread in this forum). Your local noble has suddenly, and by some fortuitous (or not?) circumstances come from a local baron into a position of contender for the kingship. He used to be friendly with the magi, so he is boasting that he gets magical assistance. How do you deal with that? Do you help him? If no, how do you calm him? If yes, how do you calm the Quaesitors?

Your are our hunting when The Wild Hunt targets you as a suitable quarry. This can be a repetitive event. How do you deal with it?

The church inherits the lands where the magi have his covenant. Maybe from a noble, maybe from a senile magus that says so before dying. The church officials are very visible and have MR thanks to a few relics. They will not hear that the charter of the covenant forbids this and they demands that the sorcerers move away from Church lands.

A bonisagus on the brink of a Major breakthrough claims that he needs full access and rights to the major vis source of the covenant to achieve his final success. He demands ownership of the vis source during the next 50 years. He has strong political backing as well since the Order seems eager to what he might achieve with his research. Maybe he is about to break a Major limit

A none-too-stable Verditius Archmaga has created a 'black hole' device - just to see if she could. It has consumed all of the Aura in her Covenant in order to become big enough to eat up the next closest Aura, and it will just keep going unless someone can find a way to turn it off.

Suddenly one day, across the Strait of Gibraltar and the English Channel, giant muddy land bridges miles wide appear. (Throw in one from Goteborg to Denmark, or two near Copenhaven, to add to the fun.) Shipping and trade routes are devistatingly disrupted, and people are Very Afraid. Find out who/what is responsible for the new geography, and either restore trade by getting rid of the land bridges, or find a way to profit from the new world order.

Just a clarification, This will all be run without a SG, It's a competition of manipulating the advancement/lab rules and spinning a good yarn.


Finding out who is responsible would be a prickly issue to take up in our reverie because there is no right answer. I do fear conflict. The land bridges are an excellent idea and very doable, we'd just need to explain them (sextuple botch by a magus, faerie curse, revenge of Saint what's his name upon the merchants who befouled his remains, etc.)

The mystery of the missing Rhine falls suffers the same difficulty.

Sounds brilliant! I really should arrange to exit Mythic Scandinavia somewhat more often, to find fellow magi.

The original The Mysteries. Lots of fun stuff there. "The Eclipse of 1248", page 57-58. (In that version it lasts for four hours and inexplicably ends directly above Jerusalem, btw.)

Well I was drawn to this thread on account of the fine title..

On further reading I encounter the phrase ''Zombie apocalype'.

Sadly I have nothing to add beyond stating your saga sounds like it has all the makings of some very fine roleplaying and I hope you thoroughly enjoy it. It sounds marvellous.

What can I think of to top "Zombie Apocalypse"?

A powerful (might 50+) takes roost on a castle somewhere in Mythic Europe, like in Poland. He takes over Poland rules it like a despotic "draconian" kingdom. How did the magus manage to defeat the dragon of the castle?
I totally stole that one. Let me see if I can do better...

Doctor Doom? No, um. Arch of Kittens? Too silly. Ah, let's see...

I have it!

The covenant discovers a gateway to another world, through a regio into the magic realm. This strange place is rich with all sorts of vis, but it is inhabited by these strange blue creatures and the covenant would have to disrupt or displace these blue creatures.
These creatures, call them Smurfs, these Smurfs harvest the vis in the form of Smurfberries and are an important part of their diet and economy. So one of the magi must disguise himself as a Smurf and infiltrate their community. But once there, he falls in love with Smurfette, so he switches sides and tries to defend the Smurfs against the covenant.

Eh? What do you think?


Would that be a 3D saga? :mrgreen:

Cult of diabolists begin making efforts to bring about the birth of the anti-christ.... visions warn of the coming apocalypse... can magi stave off the end days????


maybe too much of a downer though

I think the general theme has been misunderstood. This is a storyteller-less session where we are looking for standalone problems to solve. Ideally, there are multiple paths to success, but the result is rather unambiguous. Again, no story teller involved, no roleplaying required to discover details of the threat. Just a well-defined problem to solve in the most artful manner, within a timeframe.

The Bishop for the area decided to move make a new seat in the nearest town to the Covenant. Once sanctified, the divine aura will destroy 2-3 vis sources. You have 20 years before it is built and sanctified.


How about this... the next occuring tribunal is only a year away... everyone is looking forward to it...
Now... the covenant that was to host it has been utterly and totally destroyed ... are your magi to host it... if so how will they make all the necessary arrangements in so short a time, and so forth

A nearby city (large settlement) comes under attack, loses, and the population flees to the covenant. In the past, the covenant has had good relationships with the city's mayor and good relationships with the army that took the city. What do the magi do with the citizens?

A dying Tytalus archmagus wills 100 pawns of vis to the magus, with the warning that other, younger magi will certainly start threatening the recipient with Wizard Wars to take the inheritance. He essentially tells the magus to "use it or lose it". The magus has two seasons before the first Wizard War declaration comes.

House Mercere goes on strike, refusing to deliver messages until they are treated with the respect they deserve from the Order of Hermes. The magus is asked to invent some device or geegaw that will make the Redcaps think they have risen in status, and told that the device must be able to be mass produced. What is the device and how many can you make in the time allowed?

Sicily is sunk by a faerie claiming to be Neptune and Corsica is next on the list. The Verditius magi from Verdi beg the magi to either stop Neptune or move Corsica.

The Magi of [insert name of evil covenant here] have created flying ships that hurl fireballs and plan to sky-sail to London to raze the city in a year. What can the Iron Magus do, create, etc. to bring down the ships, protect London, or stop the invasion?

have fun w/ the game!

Matt Ryan

My response to Matt's last one is ''What's the ship made of?''

Adamantium. :wink:

Matt Ryan

Which is a metal, and thus a perdo terram to remove... well,it's solidity would do nicely. Crew the ship you can't stand on, ye buggars.

So, how did the weekend go?


Next weekend, not last weekend. Hopefully I'll post a thread someplace with details after the fact.

Ahh, getting my deadlines confused. Still time for us to post ideas!