Apprentices: In my hands...

The easiest way to errata it is making Gentle Gift a Major Supernatural Virtue, hence implicitly out of reach of a parens in Apprentices, and implicitly no longer counting against the ArM5 p.37 limit of a single Major Hermetic Virtue. Both are likely welcome results.
Establishing a category of 'Innate Hermetic Virtues' would be a second approach, with some more additional rules needed to make it fly.
Why this would necessarily make Gentle Gift a must have virtue escapes me. It is still a Major Virtue, with associated cost. Note, that with Apprentices rules also very few parentes (namely those with Com+Teaching >= 9) will be able to bestow any Major Hermetic Virtue without inflicting a Major Hermetic Flaw in the process - so the cost for standard Major Hermetic Virtues has not much changed either, as long as SGs avoid weird extremes in a PC's parentes.


Since the book is not a PDF, (and I don't have it with me) doesn't the parentes need a rather high InVi lab total to preserve Supernatural Gifts? Again, goes to my point: Apprentices creates more problems than it solves.

Do you somehow imply, that errataing handling of the Gentle Gift in Apprentices would lead to requiring parentes to preserve it as a Supernatural Virtue? Apparently you know how it would turn out already - while I don't.


Found it, the rules for opening the Arts as it applies to Supernatural Virtues in HoH:S
I'm not implying, but am stating exactly that. Apprentices and Houses of Hermes:Societas both follow the same formula for Opening the Arts and preserving Supernatural Virtues. If the Gentle Gift is a Major Supernatural Virtue (without a corresponding ability), the magus must have an InVi lab total of 30 to open the Arts. To preserve the Supernatural Virtue requires a lab total of 60.

60 isn't uber specialized, but it is marginally specialized. It, at the very least, suggests that Supernatural Virtues within Magi are rather rare, two or more are exceptional.

Personally I felt there where quite a lot for such a thin book. (23 plus several, IMO good, flavor sidebars)

See I didn't see that. Most of the new rules that allow a Master to imbue virtues and flaws are a matter of choice. They are things a Master CAN do if they have the desire and ability. I haven't crunched the numbers but I don't think it's easy enough that there is even an assumption it WILL happen. Mostly the average master will have to be content with having their pupil develop along what ever route they normally would. With perhaps a little nudging.

Noble's Parma, but I'm not sure it was part of cannon as much as strongly hinted at, if even that. As I said before it seems weird. A sentence like "Use your common sense as to what Virtues can or can not be gained this way." wouldn't have gone amiss in that section. That being said I would think many of those choices are saga dependent.

The way I see it before Apprentices there where no clear ways for a character to accomplish either task. There was no reliable way for a Magus to pass on their style of magic to the next generation or inversely to correct for their inadequacies. To me both seam like legitimate character goals but before this book they could only be accomplished by fiat. Now at least there is a frame work for the arrogant Magi to be able to pump out a pupil who practices magic "The Right Way". As far as passing on skills they lack goes, I see nothing wrong with Magi having to wade into the waters of Hermetic Politics to do so.


When I said some, I did perhaps undersell it. There were a lot of sidebars.

Sure, the master can imbue the virtue, if he has it. He cannot imbue a virtue he doesn't have. If these are Hermetic virtues, I should think that a master can imbue any virtue he pleases, if he has the ability, otherwise to do so. I'm teetering on an HR that allows the player(s) a choice in a hermetic virtue or flaw that comes about as a result of opening the Arts, match major for major minor for minor, it doesn't matter, could even be 1 major for 3 minors or 1 minor for 1 major (these are all comparing virtues to flaws, respectively). It's going to be a way to define the character and what path he'll follow through apprenticeship. It seems mystical. The Master (as a character) shouldn't know what he's going to get out of this process of Opening the Arts. It happens, he determines the results, and then he plans out how he's going to work with what he's got going forward. Seems mythical to me, that's just my opinion. And if someone wanted to randomize results, I'd be fine with that.

When HoH:S suggests that Jerbiton search for Gently gifted apprentices and are willing to take less intelligent magi as a result, that really strongly suggests that Gently Gifted is innate. It's not explicit, but to my reading it's darn close to saying Gentle Gift is innate.

Perhaps I liked the ambiguity, the wiggle room to let my imagination flow.

I would never have come up with some concepts I did, or quite simply they likely wouldn't exist in a "real" mythic europe.
Concepts such as Tektonius, my Rigid Magic Unstructured caster, which came about as a result of the discussion of Unstructured Caster Hermetic Flaw. He can't cast any spells he knows! The other is Talia, who had deficient Ignem and the master didn't knowingly inflict that flaw on her, and tried to fix it, or she had it innately and he tried to overcompensate for it. Those concepts become less plausible when viewed through the lens of Apprentices.

Well the rules in Apprentices aren't limiting. Being taught by your master or getting a particular virtue or flaw during your opening aren't the only ways a character can acquire these traits. Nothing says that Hermetic virtues and flaws can't be the result of inborn talents or other life events not controlled by the master. They are still just like other Virtues and Flaws that way.

Certainly Magi can still be surprised by the talents and limitations of their apprentices.

The fact that apprentices could have inborn virtues would explain why Jerbitons would still seek out children with the Gentle Gift even if it can be taught. It's hard enough to teach it as is. If a child already has another major or even a couple of minor hermetic virtues it becomes nearly impossible to teach by the new rules.

No the rules for Apprentices aren't strictly ruling out my interpretation of what is possible. I guess I found the treatment rather simplistic, and not holistic, if that makes any sense.

You really state that "errataing handling of the Gentle Gift in Apprentices would lead to requiring parentes to preserve it as a Supernatural Virtue"? Weird, weird. Actually I don't believe that you want to do this, though you stress it explicitly.

That's all true, but misses the point.


I would look at it more as a mystery script ( house script). The apprentice does something that follows the script and gains a virtue and a flaw. Some would be strictly in house like Mutants for Mercere. But all of them should not be that way. Magical focus should be something that happens by training during the apprenticeship.

I'd appreciate you not quoting something you think I said as if I actually said it. It's not at all accurate.

First, I didn't bring up treating Gentle Gift as a supernatural virtue, you did. I explained the effects of it being a supernatural virtue, as you suggested based on the RAW as it is in Apprentices, which exists in HoH:S. If Gentle Gift exists prior to opening the Arts, to preserve it requires having a InVi lab total of 60. It was your suggestion for errata:

So if Gentle Gift exists prior to Opening the Arts, to preserve it you need an InVi lab total of 60. To open the arts and destroy the Gentle Gift is an InVi lab total of 30. And somewhere a Jerbiton cries.
So your suggested errata makes a Gently Gifted magus less common in the order, or that Jerbiton moves heaven and earth to find an InVi specialist to open the Arts and preserve the virtue. It seems as if this is a tapestry and if we pull the wrong piece it unravels.

This is not correct. Apprentices can have Hermetic Virtues, latent or otherwise, before The Gift is Opened, and there is no need for a high Lab Total to preserve Hermetic Virtues. Those rules are in ArM5; page 107. The conversion is required for non-Hermetic Supernatural Abilities, not Hermetic Virtues.

If you read the teaching rules as the only way to get Hermetic Virtues, then that would seem limiting, but that wasn't the intention at all.

I thought the Apprentices book was great. I have had it for a week now and am still working out the possibilities.

I thought the rules for giving Hermatic Virtues are clever. Similar to mysteries yet within most Masters abilities. A master can create a successor in his own image (if that is what he wants), or the apprentice can have what ever virtues he wants with out reference to his master (via Inherited Virtues).

It all depends if you are playing the Teacher or thhe Apprentice. This mst have been a difficult balancing act for the writers and I think they have pulled it off with style.

The book does seem to make the Gentle Gift more useful as it does say that learning from teachers who do not have the Parma incurs the social interaction penalty of -3 that come with the Gift.

Ok, I didn't get that from reading Apprentices, but I haven't given it an exhaustive cover to cover read. Rather, I didn't get that Hermetic Virtues could be part of the apprentice before the Arts are opened. I've read the sections on opening the Arts and also on imparting Hermetic virtues, and what you're saying isn't clear. Furthermore, what you're saying suggests that Gifted characters should be Hermetic or at least commonly have Hermetic Virtues. While Gifted PCs normally are Hermetic, there are other Gifted individuals out there. I don't understand how someone has a Hermetic virtue before opening the Arts, either.

Well it's never been a requirement to be a Hermetic Magus to have Hermetic Virtues. Some are only applicable for Hermetics but the only strict across the board requirement is being Gifted. (ArM5 pg 36) So even by those rules a gifted child could be created with Hermetic virtues.

Additionally if you may or may not have noticed their are other rules in Apprentices that allow young characters to develop or switch Virtues and Flaws during play. Check out Inherited and Childhood Virtues and Flaws. In fact the whole section on creating young characters is pretty informative on this subject.

Also remember as pointed out in Apprentices when creating a character there stats represent the character as they are when they enter play. So characters can have whatever virtues or flaws the need. Defining when and how they acquired them is a matter of their background. They might have had some of their virtues from birth, they might have acquired them during their apprenticeship, or they might have been picked a week ago in a twilight episode.

Teachers who don't have Parma is suggestive of Gifted teachers not trained in Hermetic arts or perhaps an apprentice. It is otherwise presumed that a Hermetic master extends his Parma so the effects of his Gift are neutralized.

That would depend entiretely on how you further errata Apprentices - I certainly did not make any suggestion on complete, self contained errata there. As you just said: "I'd appreciate you not quoting something you think I said as if I actually said it. It's not at all accurate."

As you just said: "I'd appreciate you not quoting something you think I said as if I actually said it. It's not at all accurate."

Your further misreadings have been handled by David Chart in the meantime.


I do get that. It is very clear from the canon of multiple books.

However, a big part of the xp you get as an apprentice is training with people other than just your master. For example other experts in the covenant. Most covenants have more than a few skilled people hanging around. Alchemists, priests, herbalists, merchants, knights, nobles and, well, the entire range of Companions.

I would assume that they would be expected to provide at least some training to apprentices as a part of their duties.

Just how many seasons an apprentice can take advantage of visiting scholars can make an enormous difference to how many abilities they have at the end of the apprenticeship.

If, for example, your troupe decides that one season a year is fair, then 15 seasons of training times -3 experience points for having the Gift or -6 for the Blatant Gift could mean as much as a 90 points difference at gauntlet.

The Apprentices book has a great discussion of this issue as well as the possibility that the Master may wish to share his Parma with a third person ( the scholar).

The Apprentices book is really comprehensive of all these kinds of issues and is jammed packed with ideas. So jammed packed that is does need to be read several times and the different chapters need to be considered in context with one another. For this Topic you need to consider the paragraphs on Inherited Virtues, Childhood Virtues as well as Teaching Virtues.

Likewise the info on gaining Hermatic Flaws during apprenticeship are also in several different chapters.

So here's an attempt at a small, self contained and least intrusive errata to Apprentices addressing the teaching of certain Hermetic Virtues.

On p.41, after "Both teacher and student must be Gifted individuals trained in Hermetic Magic Theory." insert into the same paragraph the following phrase:
"The Troupe always decides, which Hermetic Virtues can be taught in this way. It may in particular exclude those Virtues directly related to the Gift, like Gentle Gift and Inoffensive to Animals, those for other reasons innate, like Mythic Blood, those related to position in the Order of Hermes, like Hermetic Prestige or such House Virtues as Colens Arcanorum (HoH:TL p. 25), those related to specific possessions, like Personal Vis Source, those requiring Initiation, or those just bestowing special training, like Mastered Spells and (Gild) Trained (GotF p. 20)." For the importance of the Troupe see . :slight_smile:

On p.41 "Each Minor Hermetic Virtue the character already possesses adds +3 to the Target Level, and each Major Hermetic Virtue adds +9." change to "Each Minor Hermetic Virtue the character already has been taught this way adds +3 to the Target Level, and each Major Hermetic Virtue adds +9." This is to keep the teaching process plausible and fair by avoiding unteachable Hermetic Virtues to affect it - without having to reorganise the mixed bunch Hermetic Virtues have become.

Authors and editor would need to vet this thoroughly, of course.

It has always been thus, and illustrates the value of the Gentle Gift.

Yes that is very true, but keep in mind teachers can impart a lot of experience points. Teachers can give 15xp, or more, very easily. Good Teacher, com 3 teaching score 5 give 11, 14 or 17 xp easily. Further if a magus can customize a lab for teaching can a dedicated classroom count as a lab allowing specialization points added into XP? If a magus spends time setting up a classroom, in preparation for apprentices or others to be taught, I'm hard pressed to say no. Ignoring the specialization question, though. Above standard Gifted students would receive 8, 11 or 14 xp, while Blatantly Gifted receive 5, 8 or 11. I don't see an issue with that. Without a magus sharing Parma, I'd do it exactly as above. Does the magus really care? Note im assuming in cases where multiple Gifted students are taught that the penalties don't stack. It could be argued, and I think has, that they might stack. Apprentices may answer that question.

Sharing Parma also requires the sharer of Parma remain in the room, keeping in sight of the teacher. It may or may not be desirable for the sharer. Although I might hand wave the keep in sight of requirement of sharing, but that raises other difficult issues completely unrelated to teaching apprentices.

I will do an exhaustive run through, at some point. That being said, David Chart's comment seems counter-intuitive. Opening the arts is a hermetic process how can an apprentice have hermetic virtues before they ever meet a master? What if the apprentice were discovered by a Shari, do those virtues then go to waste? Of course one can always say you could always give Hermetic virtues before when you created your character, but that is beside the point. To my thinking Hermetic virtues were always derived from something going on during the apprentice ship. Now we are saying it is innate or your master had it. The idea that Hermetic virtues are innate solve the Gent Gift conundrum, but seems less than satisfying. It may be that there are pre-Hermetic traits that masters can look for and can easily transform them into fully Hermetic virtues. I don't know...