I'm a little unclear on how to calculate Penetration. Page 84 says "The Penetration Bonus starts at one times the character's Penetration Ability, and the multiplier can be increased" but no where (that I can find) does it tell us how to determine base Penetration Ability (to which all the rest of the bonuses are added). The rules also seem to imply that you need to have an Arcane Connection in order to use Penetration (I don't know if I'm reading this wrong).
The example given near the bottom of page 84 gives Mari Amwithig a Penetration score of 3 (+1 for her specialization in Perdo). Can someone tell me why her score is 3? Originally I assumed it was because she had one of the dragon's scales, which according to the Arcane Connections chart would be a bonus worth +3, but I have the feeling that I'm wrong because then she goes ahead and creates an Arcane Connection using Astrology. Maybe she's using more than one Arcane Connection? If so it's not clear.
And clearly I'm confused...
I understand how Sympathetic Connections give culminating bonuses, I'm just not sure what to add them to. Do you just add all the Sympathetic and Arcane bonuses you can to 1 in order to determine the Penetration multiplier?
I have a first-printing of the book. Maybe there's some errata I need to be looking at.
ability = skill
She has a 3rd level skill in Penetration and she choosed Perdo to her skill which adds +1 when using Perdo spells.
She has only one arcane connection, the dragon's scale, and accumulates modifiers and multipliers to her Penetration Ability. In this case she doesn't want to cast through the arcane connection (AC) but uses these bonuses the AC and the other sympatethic connections provide to get a very good chance to penetrate the dragon's magic resistance against regular spells. Agony of the Beast is a Voice ranged spell not AC ranged.
You add the multiplier bonuses from different sources together and multiply the result with the Penetration Ability.
If you've mastered the spell and took the penetration mastery, that adds to your penetration ability for that specific spell too.
So the total of those two is then multiplied.
Say I have a penetration score of 3, specialty ignem.
I have mastered Pilum of Fire for 15 xp and took multiple casting and penetration as masteries.
I've got a permanent Arcane Connection (x4) and a true name (x1).
I would then have a penetration of: Casting total - Spell level + (3 score + 1 specialty + 2 mastery)x(4 AC + 1 Name)
Without the Arcane Connection, the penetration bonus would only be 4, not 30 -> good reason to find an AC to that nasty dragon.
Sodalis Sophia, I think there is a tiny mistake there, but I might be incorrect myself. I think you should add one to the multiplier just because the character has Penetration skill. I think it adds to the Penetration total even if the caster doesn't have an arcane connection.
Caster has Creo 10, Ignem 10, Stamina 0 and the above skill, arcane connection and name. Caster rolls 5 in Aura 0. Casting Total would be 10 + 10 + 0 + 2 from mastery = 22, to get penetration he subtracts spell level 20 and gets 2 and finally adds (Penetration skill + mastery) multiplied by (1 (base) + 4 (ac) + 1 (name)) = 2 + (3+1+2) x (1+4+1) = 2+6x6=38. Did I do something ... bad?
Sorry to bring this up again, but I think Sodalis Umbra just made a big mistake. The example above does not take into account the roll itself. Therefore penetration total is actually five higher than calculation shows.
Sorry, I had to bump this up because I hate having mistakes here. Someone may otherwise read this erraneous example some future day and perhaps get confused about Penetration rules because of Sodalis Umbra's mistake. I simply cannot allow that. Sodalis Umbra, you have to do better than this in the future!