Ars Magica: A bonfire of tradition (hedge saga) [4-5 players]

Campaign Title: A bonfire of tradition

System: Ars Magica 5th edition.

Number of Players: 2-5. I am not confident running more.

Deadline: End of January

Starting Level: post gauntlet. Since they sr energies there is no real advancement compared to Hermetics.

Advancement Rules: per the RAW, but we will we progress. Some HR are bound to creep up.

Combat Rules: basic rules
Only exception will be that group combat will not be used. People (or animals) trained to fight together will get a +3 bonus to their attack and defence for each helper in their side. IMO it makes combat less bland and more exciting for all characters.

Dice-Rolling Rules: We are all grown people. I trust you to post real rolls, either online rolls, app rolls or.made.with actual trusty dice that can be burned if they roll badly.
Special Rules: Any other special rules you'll be using, or house rules, or supplements you'll be drawing material from.

Posting Rate: 2 posts per week, but we will see.

Absences: Slow players.eill be post more or we will find a way to make them comfortable. Absent players will be turned into NPC and will likely be handled to.another player or removed in character.

Writing Expectations: Collaborative approach. have an idea? Shot away.

Text Formatting: bold for speaking. Cursive for OOC posting.

Plot- or Character-Driven: combination of the 2.

Focus: the development of the covenant through a tumultuous situation and the development of its characters and interests. More centered in politics and magical exploration than combat.

Character Types: hedge magicians, both gifted and ungfitted. Companions and grogs welcome.

Campaign Description:

Setting Triamore, in what used to be the Rhine tribunal. The Order of Hermes is gone, replaced by a new Order of Hermes composed of hedge traditions. We will take the Triamore setting and play along but with the supernatural players being hedge magicians. More details in the thread above.


If you allow it I shall make a variant Augustan Brotherhood (Followers of Merinita):

  • Diivination, TMRE p.58+ (replaces Sortes Virgilianae)

  • Mercurian Rites (replaces Vigilio)

  • Nature Lore (replaces Animo)

I am proposing a scholar who is an Elementalist and maybe a Mechanican.

What about Frère Sulpice de Reims:

Theologian and linguist at the university of Paris. He was given the Ars Notoria (RoP:TD p.97ff) manuscript to work on, because he was the only scholar in Paris able to read 'Chaldean' - and happens to be Gifted too. Accident or miracle?
He enters the Franciscan order a year or two before the start of the saga - certainly inspired by his experience. This may be somewhat tricky but possible before 1220, and easier in 1224 or so, with Anthony then preaching in Occitania.
At or a little before the start of the saga, he might arrive in Triamore, attracted by its library. In 1220 it might not yet hold the translations of Aristotle from Arabic made in Sicily, but is certainly already noteworthy even for a Parisian.

Now I put the "bad guy" mask on.

Basic rule: do not try to game the system or bute more than you can chew (including what the SG can chew). This is an exploratory saga for the powerr of Hedge traditions. I will not be able to keep track of all your stuff, because there are a lot of magic systems at play, so I will rely heavily on the players to keep things on track. Thanks :slight_smile:

After sleeping on this, if you do not mind I would prefer "pure" traditions. Mechanica and elementalism are 2 doifferent magical traditions that supposedly require different Openoings of the Arts. They also do not match very well, so I would prefer to keep them separate. Not that I am against getting other supernatural abilities for your character, but Ancient Magic stuff are pretty much their own traditions, and having 2 traditions in one character seems wrong. Hope you see my point.

The Augustan Mercurian
The changes are so big that this character is hardly an Augustan at all. Not bad stuff, but it is not an Augustan Brother :slight_smile: You can either go for a Virgilian or go for something else.

Ars Notoria
I am still puzzled by that one (as proposed by OneShot). Anyone that has thought about the implications of such a character? Seems like a paragon of normal abilities over a magical user. I have no idea on how that works, really. In general I prefer not-divine or infernally aligned characters IMS having had bads experiences with them in the past in intra-troupe play, but I am willing to be swayed.

Additionally, Callen has expressed an interest in joining with a refugee Sahir. We already have 5 players showing interest (listed below). I honestly doubt my capacity to handle 6 hedge traditions, but I like Callen as a dedicated and dependable player so I would like to have him on board. As a consequence I will not create a character of my own (if I have to use one I will use a visiting character that is using the library or something like that).

List of interested players and traditions so far

  • Plot_device : Elementalist
  • MalakhGlitch . True Merinita. Forest paths and Nature Lore related magics. Plan B: Breton Gruagach
  • Darkwing : Witch. Plan B: gruagach and learned magician.
  • DeedNay : Learned Magician. Plan B: Vitki.
  • OneShot : Ars Notoria.
  • Callen : Sahir.

Is it possible to be a Virgilian wizard without being a part of the Augustan Brotherhood?

Frère Sulpice is indeed rather a - somewhat supernatural - scholar than an ass-kicking and monster-killing practitioner of magic. As a Franciscan he is indeed bound to categorical non-violence, and this will soon - in the decade following 1220 - be generally known.
He needs to be more subtle: but Ring 3, Ring 4 and Ring 5 allow already approaches to typical problems of covenants, that are out of reach of many hedgies. Beyond that, already Ring 1 will make him a decent preacher, and he is likely to build up quite some reputation outside the covenant soon. This nicely fits the

If ambitions in the saga should turn to multiple traditions per character, he could always get initiated into the Holy Tradition: Franciscans (The Church p.137ff) without having to break any character concept.

I think that Frère Sulpice will be very Compassionate and prone to moral suasion - but certainly not 'holy'. The Franciscan rule requires, that on overland travels he is accompanied by another brother. That could be a Friar Juniper type.

You can always ignore your peers. And that can be a source of stories. They might try to drag you to their schemes. You might decide not to go there. :slight_smile:

Ok, did the in depth reading of Ars Notoria. While I am still very puzzled at what OneShot intends with this character, I will allow it. it is not truly a magician per se, but more a kind of mythic companion trying to commune with God. dunno id triamore is the place I would find most appropriate for him, but I have seen way more stretched characters in a lot of sagas, so the franciscan from Paris is in.

Ah well, back to Plan A: Gifted Companion with Nature Lore and maybe some other nature-oriented magics. :slight_smile:

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I'm ok with giving up Mechanica. I will have some nuts-and-bolts questions re character creation but they can wait.

My two cents for Ars Notoria - I think all the rings are achievable, especially if you take Affinity, but just the rings alone won't give you the ability to do much. Maybe paired with a tradition that grants holy powers?

I mentioned this to Xavi via PM, but I'll post it here too.

In Sub Rosa #15 there is an article Britannia, 550 A.D. that has 2 options presented to represent pre-Bonisagus magic on p.12+

I'd like to play a Gifted variant Learned Magician (Mythic Alchemist).

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Perfect. Mythic alchemist then. Only one.poi t of warning: until you take steps to correct it, Triamore is a covenant that breaks even. O did the rough numbers today and once we take all the magi in, it will generate exactly the same income as the expenses it will have. It came.up to 80-80 mythic pounds in my midday break calculations (with some rough estimates). So if you need expensive components you might be limited at first.

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Mythic Alchemists generate wealth. With vis they can turn lead to gold.

Btw there is some overlap growing so I am giving thought to alternative ideas. Not abandoning Elementalist yet but just a heads- up.

Since Normans are really Vikings, and Normandy is on the doorstep of the covenant, can you see a Norman branch of the Vitkir tradition?

I don't know, the Normans were were brought into Christianity much earlier. Still it seems about as likely as coming across a germanic branch (ties to old worshippers of Wotan, Donner, etc.)

Is it bad that I prefer the rules for Large Libraries from Transforming Mythic Europe (sidebar, page 105) over the rules for Durenmar's Great Libary (Guardians of the Forest, pages 55-57)? I find them to be far less complex and far more organised.
Given that a Mythic Alchemist's abilities can scale with their Philosophy score having the Durenmar rules could allow me to develop very quickly. Turn Wood to Silver quickly. Which it would allow us to improve our finances, might not be what we are going for.

That said, I do look forward to trying to send grogs off to fetch rare/expensive components at some points, as wizards are prone to doing. :wink:

@Plot_Device: Overlap on some our supplemental* mundane abilities isn't bad. In fact it means that our traditions have another vested interest in common, which could be used as a starting point to develop our magic theory, if we go that way. I see it as a plus.
*(By supplemental, I mean that our magical talents benefit from them, so Medicine, Philosophy and (Realm) Lore for Elementalists and Philosophy for Mathomagi like my character. I do confess, i will take the other two abilities for him(/her?) because it makes sense but i will lean more heavily into Philosophy and Artes Liberales. If you are worried about niche protection, I'm certainly willing to discuss it, but some overlap isn't a bad thing.)

Vitkir is not any more religious than Hermetic Magic is (or was for this saga). Which is to say not completely irreligious but also could survive the conversion to christianity.

Anyway, that aside; there is significant enough overlap between Elementalism and Sihr/Learned Alchemy that if the SG allows it I'll make a Vitkir. I was kind of interested in it from the beginning but went a different direction when other people seemed to want to do it.

Sorry, I was editing my last post and took too long. If you want to do elementalism, go for it @Plot_Device. I've certainly tried to talk about why I think it is ok above.

I agree that overlap isn't the end of the world.

But my first choice would be Vitkir if Xavi doesn't mind. That was my original idea, but I changed to Elementalism because I saw that Vitkir had already been claimed, and Elementalist was also something I wanted to try.

It's not so much that I don't want to be Elementalist if you're going Learned Magician, it's that I want to be Vitkir if you're not going to. :smiley: