Apollo's Discipline: sample Pentiterouni effects

Again, reviewing the old books that you have not checked in a while is BAD for your mental health. In this case I was wondering what effects would a Hyperborean initiate be able to summon. The character concept is a guy that is charged by the spirits of the Thousand Columns sanctuary with reviving Apollo's worship in the area. They initiate him in ONE of the Hymns to achieve that. I thought that Pentiterouni would be the most appropiate one. In the end it came up much better than I expected. Let's see some of the effects I think it can achieve. Those are only samples, not finalized effects.

Obviously a given user cannot have them all since he would warp like a madman (and probably BECOME a madman in the process... a fairly depressed one) but these are a few effects I thought he could consider.

Pentiterouni effects
Create animal skin clothes. Not elegant, but functional. They offer a limited protection from damage (animal skin)
Skin an animal, either a dead or alive one (skin)

Avoid aging (aging and growth)
Pass an aging crisis (aging and growth)
Age someone to maturity (aging and growth) or cause an aging crisis
Make skin resistant to damage. Tough virtue or impervious (Gift of Caineus) (skin)
Healing body up to heavy wounds (skin, flesh, organs)
Healing body: incapacitating wounds (skin, flesh, organs)
Break bone (bones)
Heal bones (bones)
Remove the femur from a human being. It can be an alive one. It is counted as an incapacitating wound (bones)
Internal bleed (organs)
Heal organs (organs)

Invoke a yew bow (yew) or an ash spear (ash)
Throw an ash spear with perfect aim (ash)
Summon a yew bow and ash arrows (with onyx tip) in an animal skin quiver
Ash arrows coated in nightshade to deal more damage (ash, nightshade)
Coat something in nightshade venom. Maybe an arrow, maybe the apple you are eating (nightshade).
Turn into a yew tree (yew)
Cause someone to tremble uncontrollably (trembling)

Cause depression and despair (depression)
Remove one of the negative emotions listed in the Pentiterouni Mentem guidelines
Create an onyx (onyx)
Create a sapphire (sapphire)
Aura of rightful authority equivalent (authority)
Find a cave. It tends to be perfect for what is needed (organization, caves)
Lead a group of people in an activity, like construction or war (organization)

All kinds of cause/remove emotions using mentem. Removing the seriousness of the king when negotiating peace terms can be quite funny

After all that, I ended up thinking that concentrating in a single Hymn is not necessarily a bad thing after all. Specially if you want high levels of effect or a large number of them. Te amount of spell-like effects that you can generate with a single hymn are enough to make an interesting character that only possesses one of the hymns of Hyperborea. However, a dispersion of Hymns might be better if you only want low level effects; most hymns do not require penetration, so a high hymn total is not needed as long as you can enchant the effect into yourself and cast it. That level of proficiency would be enough. That would not allow you to sing "ceremonially spontaneous" effects all by yourself (choir), though.


Personally, I found Momentary Creo rituals to be the most rewarding since the Level of such effects is comparatively low, the effect is real and the Hymnist needn't expend Vis to fuel the power. In retrospect, however, I think I may have been taking an overly hermetic PoV when it came to designing the effects in my grimoire resulting in some powers that fail to capture the flavour of the tradition (admittedly difficult since te nature of Hyperborea itself is deliberately left vague).

I agree that it's generally more profitable to focus on a single hymn though I would also note that, in the absence of rules for opening the arts of a Gifted individual, it's also the only way to proceed with learning hyperborean magics.

Actually, centering on a single hymn is only really rewarding if you want to use the Choir mechanics. For "formulaics" it is easier to get extra spells if you disperse your knowledge. Raising an Hymn to level 3 gives you 45 spell-like levels. Getting Hymns 2 at level 2 (same XP cost) gives you 60 spell-like levels.


Just for the fun of it, I figured on the fly what an angered Choir of 3 Hyperboreans could do to a covenant. Let’s see they want to punish their hubris because they thought they are better than Apollo. Punishment of Marsyas sounds adequate (I do not want to get over-original here).

Punishment of Marsyas (base 20) at Arcane Connection (+4), boundary target +4), +1 size (+1). Final effect: 65. Let’s add a healthy +50 penetration (+25 levels). For people that can teleport while invisible (Oai powers), or pay someone to bring them one (most powers have some form of wealth creation system), getting an arcane connection to your covernant should not be that difficult.

The final spell level is 90 then, so they need a total of 30 to cast it. Difficult (there are only 3 hyperboreans in this Choir), but not impossible by a far stretch.

Now the casting. The leader has Communication +3, Pentiterouni at 4 and Ceremony 2. He speaks Hyperborean language at 2 (hymns specialization) and has the weaker version of hyperborean descent (+2). Far from extreme stats so far :slight_smile: They are casting from a +5 aura. The other 2 guys provide a bonus of Communication +2 and Pentiterouni 3 each, so a +10 total. They prepare the rite for 2 weeks (+3)

Add together Com (3) + Pentiterouni (4) + Hyperborean language (3) + hyperborean descent (2) + choir bonus (10) + preparation (3) + aura (5)


RESULT: a covenant gets all their members (well, those at the covenant art the moment of casting) instantly flayed (incapacitating wound) with a +50 penetration. Except some magi, most of them are bound to die: this spell flays ALL the skin from your body. That means that it is quite possible that even the magi are incapacitated and unable to react in front of that attack if their magical defences are weak/average. Good bye covenant. Talk about magical artillery spells!

This example is FAR from the most potent effects achievable with Ceremonial choir casting. Minmaxing a little bit, they can easily achieve a penetration of 70 or so. This was a small choir of fairly weak Hyperborean practitioners. The funny thing is that most of us can design A SINGLE character that can achieve that all by himself out of “apprenticeship”: strong hyperborean (additional +3 to his casting total from virtue plus mandatory honourable flaw) with slightly higher Pentiterouni and hyperborean language totals, a slightly higher aura (like that of the Temple of a thousand columns) and preparing for a while, he could cast the spell all by himself, and destroy a covenant per month (more or less) until stopped.

[b]We should be glad Tremere and Trianoma left nobody alive to exact revenge. :mrgreen:

Ain’t Apollo a nice chap? :wink: :smiling_imp: [/b]