Anulus Connectens: Janus of Mercere

The design is elegant, however I wonder if a Healing spell (it looks like such) can really regrowth thing from a dead plant ?

My understanding is that if you grow something without virtus, it needs to be alive. Magic will speed up the process (instant blooming of plant, livestock reaching maturity within a day and such). However, to create inert matter, you need virtus. Stone, wood, dead body, furs all require virtus to be permanent.

So the challenge is to create a ship made of living wood if you want to be able to fix damage using such spell.

It's based off of the effect "Shadow of Spring Times Departed" in MoH, page 115, I believe.

That is correct. So this might be one of the things from MoH which is not universally agreed on event though it has been playtested and published.

For the next device Janus may look at a weather ward against heavy weather. He already knows spells like this for Similar Spell bonus to lab total.

However this can be a tricky idea, because warding a ship against weather may defy the purpose óf sailing. Of course, one could simply magically create the wind needed to sail with, and if the ward only covers mundane weather effects then Robert is your father's brother.
Right now I can't understand why I had Janus invent a weather ward spell ReAu of Base 20 when the guidelines don't go above base 10 for "very severe".
Warding the ship I think I'll do with T:Ind with sufficient size modifiers - but how many? For a ward the target is the object or person protected, so it makes no sense to look at the definitions for Auram Individual...?
Using T:Structure seems silly since it shouldn't cover the mast, sail and rigging since Structure to me sounds like the entire hull and superstructure...unless the mast etc. is merely viewed as 'outside stuff on a building' like spire on a tower may???

My other ideas include:
*Cr(Re)Au to create and control wind, allowing change of force and direction. Base 2 sounds like enough since I don't want the 'gale force wind' for base 3 (or do I? is a gale good for sailing?) and add magnitudes for the ability to control direction and force, +2 mags total I think. Plus R:Sight for another +3 and D:Conc for +1 and +5 levels for Device keeps concentration, +uses per day...Probably no more than level 30 then.

*Ward against water, something like Cloak of Duck's feathers for the entire ship, so rain won't trickle down into the hold and leaks won't be a problem. Definitively not constant effect, I want the crew to be able to carry on board barrels of fresh water.

*Some way of turning salt water into fresh water...didn't we (relatively) recently have this discussion? How can this cat be skinned?

*Break the oncoming wave ReAq Base 5 according to ArM5 page 124. A device to activate when needed, to avoid large and dangerous waves.

*Clodless Sky Returned ArM5 page 128 PeAu30 or something like that. To use if a nasty weather phenomenon looms.

*Unravel the Fabric of Auram to remove magically created, nasty weather phenomena...or is Janus becoming paranoid? R:Sight and large enough to dispel magically created 'very severe weather'. Barring ritual spells these are at a maximum of level 50. A basic Unravelling at R:Sight stops spells of [level]+5+stress die. To be sure and not count on the die roll this needs to be a level 45 effect...I'll have to see if that is even possible...well, as lesser device, as invested it should be doable.

...I think maybe Janus needs to study a little Aquam, to get just a bit ahead of being merely grounded.

The function of the spell is to have the dead wood grow at the same speed as living wood. It isn't really a healing spell as such so the requirement for the target to be living doesn't really fit with the spells rationale, in fact it is completely contrary to the thought behind the spell.

Now this thinking may be problematic, but there are many examples of non-ritual spells making objects act in ways normally reserved for living creatures (dead things can move, they can speak).

The thought is not that the spell produces matter but the spell grants the wood the ability to once again grow as if it were living. The replacement material is then produced by the wood, not directly by the magic.

I have assumed that the mast and rigging is "inside" the Structure. Otherwise Keeping the Insides In, the Outsides Out makes it very hard for sailors to work the rigging/sails during travels.
I'm sorry I've failed being very explicit about that.

That would merely seem to be a but of a flexible interpretation for a Structure to allow practical use for ships as well as houses.
Never mind the sail being warded against heavy weather. Janus will build a device for wind to sail by anyway.

It was not so explicit in the initial spell design, but it is a creative, elegant and plausible mechanism. I like this spell. Maybe, as a indication that the spell is active, some tiny leaves sprout to decay as soon as the spell ends.

Seeing as 'change' is Janus' sigil then this seems a likely side effect of effects brought on by this effect. Great idea, thanks.

An important technical question arises when designing effects which Wards regarding Targets. Look a Rego Aquam "Break the Oncoming Wave" which clearly states the target is the thing protected, not the medium warded against. Hence the Ward guidelines often using T: Circle or Ind.
So is the size of the ting protected irrelevant? If not then how are Size modifiers applied? Because the definitions for what an Individual covers is odd because the thing protected is likely not the same Form as the medium warded.
The same goes for Auram wards.
However consider Ignem wards like "Ward against Heat and Flames" which is modified for the size/ intensity of the fire it protects agains. I know this may be a but special for balance reasons and because it gives a Soak rather than a binary effect or either warding completely or not. Ignem this makes sense for and so would "protective wards " against other mediums causing damage. E.G. poisonous or corrosive liquids or gases, or even physical damage from weapons or missiles.

But how to modify the " Break the Oncoming Wave" for a ship? Can it be used as is since the ship us an individual as well? IMHO not because of balance because a ship is larger than a human.
But should one look at the definitions of Targets for the Form of the thing protected? Maybe, since looking at the Form warded against makes no sense.
So the ship is a Herbam Individual with several Size modification magnitudes added. I'll go look at how many.

Also, for spells to disrupt weather :
-What Target to use? Auram Ind is a single wind,cloud etc so is a storm actually a collection of things so Janus needs T:Group?
-What duration is needed if Janus uses Rego to send storms away rather than Perdo to destroy them? How long before the storm returns to the place and direction again?

Ugh I'm still stuck pondering the Targets for the effects.

Tellus; Any ground-breaking insight?
Erik, anyone else?

I'd likely go with -

Break the Oncoming Wave works on waves and torrents of water within 10 paces of the target. If the Target is the whole ship, you need size modifiers for the spell and/or a Base Target of Structure and waves/torrents within 10 paces of the entire ship are affected. If the target is, say, a lantern hanging at the bow, only waves within 10 paces of it (the lantern) are affected; thus a lantern at the bow of a 50 pace long ship when it gets swamped by a giant wave from astern doesn't really help. If you had warded lanterns at both the bow and stern of the 50 pace ship, you'd likely be adequately protected from those directions, but still vulnerable from the sides. You'd likely need 4 smaller wards to fully protect the ship and even then the waves will break closer to the ship than 10 paces out. But if those smaller wards are moveable, then you can always bring one along on a small craft launched from the larger vessel or possibly have redundancy if suppression of the wards is attempted.

As to the weather spells, it's likely effect dependant. I could see Individual, Part and Group for the PeAu spells, depending on the exact effect. Wards would likely be Structure for the ship. Weather controlling spells would likely do best with Concentration durations, since you would likely need to control them for variable amounts of time (only while they are in a position to affect the ship, mostly) and possibly adjust the effect over time. With maintain concentration though, it's not too bad.

Initially I had thought a ward for the entire ship, I hadn't thought about using several small, portable ward-devices, which could be put on row boats etc.
If I look at a ward for the entire ship as a large Individual I'm looking at the Target definitions for an entirely different Form. The spell is Aquam because this is what it affects, but I think it must be harder to ward an entire ship than a single person. So I'm looking at Herbam for sizes, and this lists "a plant 1 pace in each direction" as a base Individual.
If I look at volume rather than mass, which seems fair enough since the ship is more os less a shell of wood around a lot of empty air, Ind +3 mags for size affects 1000 cubic paces. As always I say 1 Pace = 1 m for simplicity. Superficial research says a large Baltic cog can be 25 m long and 8 m wide (at the widest point). With an average height of masts of 5 m this is within 1000 m3.

Design is:

I don't want constant effect because of Warping. # uses/day could perhaps be lower but what the hey, the vis cost is the same and I'm sure Janus can manage

If I look at the solution of multiple smaller wards with only T:Ind, to keep water and waves 10 meters away then as few as 2 could cover the ship if placed correctly. Design for these are:

With a little effort Janus could perhaps reach a ReAu lab total of 50 so he could build 2 at once. And in a second season he could 4 from lab texts, with a little freedom of interpretation for the multiple lab activities rules?

It seems to me that T:Group would be needed if storms are made up of many components (wind, clouds, rain etc.). If so T:Part should be usable to only target the part of the storm which is dangerous og undesirable (e.g. the wind from a storm).
If storms aren't viewed to be this complex then Ind is enough, perhaps with some Size for large storms.
CrAu "Clouds of Rain and Thunder" and "Clouds of Summer Snow" and "Wrath of Winds and Whirling Water" are all T:Group, "Breath of the Open Sky" is only Ind.
MuAu "Rain of Stones" is Ind
PeAu "Quiet the Raging Winds" and "The Cloudless Sky Returned" are both T: Group and only D:Mom, with no mention of how, when and even if the weather phenomenon reforms in time.
ReAu "Clouds of Thunderous Might" and "Gathering the Stormy Might" are both T:Group and D:Conc and this is how long the caster controls. Text of the first spell mentions it can be used to break up the storm as well, but the caster needs to keep concentration long enough for the storm to finish dissipating or else it reforms.

Seeing as Janus is a lot better at Rego then Perdo, especially in his lab, then these spells should serve as the template. Not only is this method easier, it is also a lot more useful, since the device can be used offensively as well. Sucks ot be other ships hostile or in competition to Anulus Connectens' ship.


for an even nastier effect...if Janus is be able to do this.

However the Rego spells need pre-existing clouds to form the storm from...Maybe Janus should also consider a Creo Auram spell to create clouds when. The spells are not very specific as to how much is needed to begin with.

from page 114:

for ignem, these modifications are to base level not to target. This, to me, looks compatible with using the targets for the warded entity.

That all seems right. I was thinking of target structure

Target group. Here's the quote from page 125:

I'd think about how fast the clouds move and how big the group that you targeted with the original spell is. My gut feeling would be a few hours.

Thanks for your reply

I'm not too keen on using T: Structure here, because I have no need to affect things inside, if the ward keeps the unwanted medium from the outside of the ship then things inside need no protection. But then again the +3 mags for Structure matches the +3 size modifiers to Ind.

If I go with the solution for 'Break the Oncoming Wave' with multiple, small effect devices this discussion is relevant. I kind of like the idea of both the redundancy of multiple devices and the flexibility to put one such warding device on a row boat to get ashore.

As for wind and storms I'm going for the Rego Auram device which can both gather clouds into a storm, control a storm already in progress, or dissipate a storm.
Is it too much flexibility to read into the guidelines to have the device be able to do this with different weather phenomena, or is it implicit that you choose one such type of weather to control?
Because Janus wants to be able to do something about fog as well. So I'm guessing a similar device to gather, control or break up fog.

Pity I started doing hand written notes for this project, to better get an overview of the next 15 years before attacking it with MetaCreator, like I did all the other times. I'm kind of loafing a bit off at work since I'm starting a new job in May and there aren't a lot of new project coming my way here in my last few weeks. Those notes are at home and my time could be better spent doing Ars Magica stuff.

my pleasure

That does look like it would be more fun and provide more hooks for stories. I think either target would capture the ship. There is no rules imperative for their to be a single correct target for every effect. On the contrary, the target parameters are things that exist in the setting and the characters within the story choose which to use for the magics that they develop. Of course Janus could choose to use either. (Yes, I know you know this, I'm just typing so the discussion is complete. I'm not under the missimpression that I need to provide "remedial ars magica" for anyone here. Please don't take it as me talking down to you or any of the rest of the readers. That's not what I intend.)

The example spells in the core book all deal with giving a single command to the target(s) that can't be changed at the time of casting. i.e. Gathering the Stormy Might only takes weather phenomena and gathers them into a storm it can't make clouds form the shape of a stuffed bear, Ward against Rain only keeps rain off of the caster it can't keep rain on the caster. I find this a bit disappointing.

The ReAu guidelines on page 129 tell us: "Controlling an amount of air with great strength or great precision raises the magnitude of the spell by one level". I'm certain that they mean one magnitude instead of one level, perhaps that's in the errata already. I think that we could justify adding flexibility in this matter by adding magnitudes to the effect rather than by requiring multiple devices one for each action that you want the target to take.

Likewise Erik, this is what this whole project is about. Sharing ideas and designs, having the community help and discus and throw around ideas, and create some designs for use or as inspiration by others.
I was stuck for a while pondering ward targets but now I'm on a roll again.

I'm of the oppinion that the flexibility of the different forms could use some coordination since some Forms seem more flexible than others. Imaginem for one seems very narrow, where you can create or change species into seeming like one specific thing to one or more sense. IMHO it should be a little more flexible and at least cover a general group of things like animals, jewelry, clothing etc.
I'm also a fan of adding a magnitude to account for a little more flexibility than the guideline suggests.

So for the ship Janus would like to build "Wand of Mighty Storm and Fog Gathering" Rego Auram 55 (including modifications) to take existing clouds or light mist and gather it into a storm or pea-souper fog respectvely, control said phemonenon, or break one such up. So I add +1 mag to be able to affect one other weather phenomenon, not any and all. That seems fair to me.
Also, with the Magic Theory study Janus has planned in advance of building these devices the combined increase in Base Lab Total and the higher cap on S&M means he can actually build the level 55 device as a lesser device/in a single season by adding just 1 point from Lab Routine...oh wait, I think I forgot to add in his Familiar as assistant. Never mind, don't seem to need it.

So, back to Janus wanting to build a Talisman with effects similar to the spells he uses to aid and boosts travelers.
Physical form of the talisman might be a necklace with multiple pieces hanging from the chain to utilize shape bonus. A glove comes to mind because many of these spells are R:Touch

Any thoughts on this?

Ok, so I'm looking heavily into a Talisman for Janus - a device a non-Gifted successor can use to cast travel-boosting effects on the Redcaps he manages.

Aaaand once again I'm confused about Mutantum Magic!
The description in HoH:TL page 101 says:

So, why only Invested, why not Lesser?
Never mind though, a Talisman is an Invested Device anyway.

But as for Harnessing, who can prematurely deactivate the effect? Devices have no caster, but I assume it is the person who activates it.

And what can be done with Tethering? Can the "caster" or "activator" rather pass control of the Harnessed effect over to the recipient of the effect, so said recipient can end the effect at will? Because that would be nice. In fact this would make Mutantum Magic just about so useful it outweighs the confusion as how the deuce the whole concept actually works.

I'm well underway with developing Janus through years 61-75.
I'm through the most important of his study, his recreations of the devices for the Manor (all of the effects separate Lesser Devices now, so no expiry) plus 4 nice devices for the ship - one of them in multiple copies. Details will follow, don't worry.
I still have about 13 seasons free.

However as I'm looking into his Talisman - which will become a silver pendant with lots of things hanging from it - I run into an interesting problem. Follow he here, please:

  1. An object is prepared for enchantment, Vim vis used to open a compound item must be the sum of Size x Material for all components or for the largest single component.
    Janus wants to enrich a Topaz of Virtue as center piece for his Talisman. I assume this is a semi-precious stone (12 points) and it is tiny (x1), so this is the largerst component, larger than silver (6 points) pendant (tiny x1). Even if it was a humongeous piece of bling then a small (x2) silver (6) item is just the same amount of vis. He plans to add around 10 other materials, but that's no problem since his Magic Theory is through the roof once I get to this point. But additional bits of tiny metals and stones add up to 50 pawns so even Janus can't prepare the compound item with the whole shebang
    Janus has Magic Theory (enchanting items) 14+2 at this point so he can handle 34 pawns of vis per season. I add both the specialization and puissance before multiplying! Suppose he could control his base instincts and limit himself to a compound device opened with precisely 34 pawns.

  2. The device opened for enchantment with vis can now be attuned as a talisman, are you with me so far?

  3. Vis capacity for a Talisman is increased to be independent of the item itself but rather the sum of the magus' bedt Tech+Form. For Janus this is
    For Janus this is Rego 13 plus a 10 for either Animal; Aquam, Auram, Herbam, Ignem, Terram, Vim...So the capacity of the Talisman is even lower than what it would be for a simple Invested device!??!?

This is because Janus - as horrible lab rat - has shafted Art study in lieu of Magic Theory and lab improvements. And he is too much of a generalist. The amount of exp in his Arts is just over 700, which for a specialist would be two Arts in the mid 20s

  1. The effects Janus intends to invest into the Talisman take up 35 pawns worth of space, so he'd better not be limited by his Art scores but rather by the maximum number of pawns of a compound item his Magic Theory allows...and this isn't even enough!

Funny, isn't it?