Certamen, vis, botches and errata

According to the rules as written, does vis add 1 botch die/pawn to certamen rolls?

  • Yes, but it would be much better if it were stated explicitly. Please add to the errata that vis in certamen adds 1 botch die/pawn!
  • Yes, it's pretty obvious even if it's not stated explicitly. No need to even mention it in the errata.
  • No, but similarities with spell casting can mislead people. Please explicitly state in the errata that vis in certamen does not add botch dice.
  • No, when vis adds botch dice to an activity it's explicitly said to do so. Stating that vis adds no botch dice to certamen could mislead people into thinking that, unless otherwise stated, any stress roll where vis is somehow involved gets extra botch dice.
  • None of the above, not even close!

0 voters

In another thread a crucial question about certamen came up.
Does using vis add extra botch dice to certamen rolls - in particular, one extra die/pawn used?

The position of some posters is that, since vis rules for Certamen are so similar to those for spell casting (bonus per pawn, max pawns limited to Art), vis "obviously" adds botch dice, at the rate of one extra die per pawn used.

The position of other posters (like me) is that, exactly because the Certamen section restates other mechanics for vis use found in the spell casting section, and makes no mention of botch dice, botch dice should not be added - and more in general, should be added by vis use only to those rolls, like spell casting rolls and rolls to study from vis, that explicitly mention them.

In which field do you fall in? Note, this is not about how you play it - it's about how you read the rules as written.

Also, do you think this should be corrected/clarified in the errata?

They should have used vis in the certamen example.

While I'd like to see it clairified in errata, I'm not wedded to any of the given interpretations exclusively.

Not only that, but they should have made the user roll a 0 :slight_smile:
Vis was used in the certamen example of ArM3, but using it was literally a breeze for the maga in question!

So, it was Auram vis the maga used? :wink:

If the other uses of vis comes with a risk of extra Botch dice I think it is a fair assesment that vis use in Certamen also requires this. Are there any uses of vis, which involve rolling Stress dice, where the vis used does not add dice?

I can't remember, but I believe it was an Auram certamen with Grimgroth, and the effect was a powerful whirlwind surging from her source of vis!

Experimenting in the lab. Finesse and Concentration rolls with spells. And ... uh, it's not that Hermetic magic does really that many things with vis and stress dice: spells, certamen, experiements, and study.

Supernatural abilities as an explicit rule add botch dice from vis use... but vis sacrificed to Spirits in Sihr doesn't, for example.