Like many of you (I think), I've played Whitewolf Mage... or perhaps other mage-centric games that had something like the "Prime" Sphere. While in many ways it is emulated by Vim in Ars Magica, I find a certain effect or group of effects missing in Ars Magica. The effects in question being Prime 2 & Prime 4 effects of Prime-Bolt, or Purifying flames. Some sort of raw vis attack. I understand this may not be achievable but I figured I'd ask.
In Ars it can be done with an attack that inflicts warping. If you want flames et al you can have them, but they will be cosmetic "cool factor" effects. Never played or read mage, so no idea if this can be considered the same or not. The warp-inflicting attack can be quite powerful to bring down a magus, really, since (if you penetrate) at least you keep him busy fort 2 minutes while he tries to control Twilight. 2 minutes are generally more than enough to dispatch with the rest of his entourage both in a social or martial situation.
Ars Magica arts and Mage spheres don't match up that well. None of the spheres in Mage match only one form - most cover at least two or three, sometimes many more.
Ars Magica also doesn't have a concept of untyped or pure-magic damage. If it's purifying flames, it's Ignem. If it's a bolt of power, it's Auram. If it's wounds just magically opening on someone's body and spewing forth light it's probably Corpus with a funky sigil.
What you can do with Vim is pump magic into something to warp it (which can be effective in combat against magi), or pull magic out of it to make it no longer supernatural (e.g. Demon's Eternal Oblivion). While none of these deal wounds, they can certainly end conflicts in a very final I-killed-you kind of way. This is probably the closest you will come to pure-magic damage and it's entirely within the Vim form (CrVi and PeVi respectively).
As a follow-up to the OP, one of the best uses for the Prime 4 effect was to render the target down for 'quintessence' (aka vis). It seems like this could theoretically be possible with ReVi by ripping the inherent vis out of a supernatural target. Are there any examples/benchmarks for doing this in ArM?
You're talking about "vampyric" might reduction again, right? sigh
Thanks gents - I am very familiar with both systems and I was wondering if we can brainstorm something (or if it already exists) similar to PeVi might stripping spells, that would work on non magical targets.
Obviously, I'm not talking as trivial as a PeVi 10 Demon's Eternal Oblivion, but something along the lines of "unmaking" the target. I'm just having a lot of trouble with this is because, despite the similarity of Prime to Vim; there are zero guidelines for unmaking/unweaving/blah anything that does not have Vis. And unlike mage, Vis only exists as the magical essence of a magical "thing", and not just the essence/pattern of all things.
I wouldn't call it a fool's quest to create the spells, but to try and find them in the published material it certainly would be.
The underlying idea, that magical power can be pulled out of non magical things doesn't match the underlying metaphysics of the setting. I suppose that there are perdo corpus/animal spells that fatigue a target and with a breakthrough you could develop a spell that allows you to suck fatigue, but if you want to suck magical power out of non-magical things you need to tweak the setting so there's something there to suck.
I am content with the underlying metaphysics, so lets try an oblique approach. Forcing Vis into/through a person/being/creature in order to inflict damage? I guess this would be more of a Rego application to transfer Vis... You know, the more I talk about this the more it gets less appealing. Or perhaps, we can approach the same effect from another Form completely.
Have we exhausted interesting ways to "annihilate" or "unmake" a person? Two or so years ago I posted a Level 45 PeCo Fatal Wound variant (Base 30, +2 for voice, +1 for fancy effect of destroying a "dead" body) - so it was basically a Disintegrate; but this is really the aggregation of two effects, nothing too fancy. Can we disintegrate/unmake/annihilate in other methods? Would it be Muto? Would it then be permanent? How would it be permanent?
My head is spinning.
...and if you succeed in developping such spells, this might be because of infernal influence... requiring you to sacrifice people...
Yes. this the Art called 'Perdo' (litt: "I Destroy").
Thank you. Excellent example of the Form called 'Stolidus' and/or the Art 'Sarcasmos'.
In any case, Perdo is destroy, but however it is tied to a form. We know you can combine Perdo and to destroy any . However, there exists several examples of other methods to destroy and they are not tied to a specific target Form:
And that one that sparked much debate about changing a target into.. light? I can't remember it.
So the initial intent of the post was, can we come up with a method to destroy a non-magical target, using Technique+Vi? And the answer seems to be a clear no unless you change the underlying metaphysics of the setting.
By RAW probably not.
I´ve played with it as letting Vim be used as a raw energy attack though, with lower than common damage (10 below fire IIRC) and a small risk of causing extra warping for the caster.
Works good that way.
I had a similar thought. I mean metaphysically ( and I'm not an expert on Classical Greek Metaphysics or what have you), if Vis is magical essence, what methods can it channeled into/through? We know that power can be used to create permanent objects, or to make magic permanent even. Could not, theoretically, that expenditure of Vis be used to damage a target?
Of course now we're not talking about Perdo, we're talking about some sort of spell that is most probably MuVi or ReVi that actually converts Vis on the fly into some sort of damaging effect. What an incredibly expensive spell...
Well, you can use ReVi to summon up a demon which then proceeds to beat your target into pulp...
But if you mean using Vim as Mage's Prime, to affect that (Platonic) Substance-without-Form that is the underling layer supporting all of reality ... then no, Hermetic magic cannot do it, because it is predicated on the metaphysical principle that everything has a Form, and that you can directly operate on it (only) through that Form. Nothing however prevents other forms of magic from doing it.
Well, i simply used CrVi as the basic "beam/flames of energy" style of attack. Not sure if anyone ever used another technique to cause damage like that.
...and CrIg is explicitly better at raw damage than other art combination, so a -10 compared to CrIg is really just a -5 sigh
Why are we still discussing this when ezze covere it so well?
Yes? What Form do you know that does less damage than THAT? It means that as a means of causing direct damage it is the weakest, so while it has plenty other uses, most will prefer to cause damage with other Forms.
Ignem is +5 compared to "normal", while i used -5 compared to normal for Vim, balances well. Still not good enough for you? Set it at -15 compared to Ignem. I´m not forcing you to follow my lead.
Doesn't look like anyone is discussing the issue of affecting that Platonic-substance-without-Form. What is left of the discussion now is different/unique/impossible methods to channel/use Vis.