Arcane Abilities and Academic Abilities are defined in ArM5 p.63. Supernatural Abilities (also there defined) and Hedge Arts (HMRE p.9) are different from both Arcane Abilities and Academic Abilities.
Elementalist Forms (defined on HMRE p.22) are Difficult Arts (defined on HMRE p.9). Elementalist Techniques (defined on HMRE p.23ff) are by HMRE p.19f Arts.
In general Hedge Magicians get during character creation their Supernatural Abilities and Arts from normal later life xp (ArM5 p.31): per year usually 15xp (but 10 xp if Poor, 20 xp if Wealthy).
HMRE p.30 Characters describes an exception for Brethren of Purity studying Arcane and Academic Abilities for one year: they get 30 xp for Arcane Abilities and Academic Abilities instead. This should carry over to Pupils of Thierry de Chartres as well.
That is about what you get for 8 years, if you take the Major Social Status Virtue Magister in Artibus. It is not something to get for free from becoming a Brother of Purity or a Pupil of Thierry de Chartres.
So each year after initiation I must choose whether he receives 30 xp for his Arcane and Academic abilities exclusively, or 15 xp for anything? I can work with that. I will revise his xp and update his pre-saga advancement.
Another question regarding his xp before the saga. He has the major virtue Philosophical Controlling purchased seperatedly from his tradition's standard virtues, with the background that this is how his Gift initially manifested. Can I spend xp on the Controlling art before he gets initiated, during years 6 to 11, even though I do not spend xp on Elemental Forms during the same period? This would represent his raw ability in this technique before he receives any training.
I would allow the argument from ArM5 p.31 Later Life: "After early childhood, the character gains 15 experience points per year, which may be placed in any Abilities, as long as the character has a Virtue that permits her to learn those Abilities." Yes, an Art is not strictly an Ability: but exercising it around Turbulences (Apprentices p.22ff) is just too good an idea.
(Philosophical) Controlling 2 (15 xp + 7.5 from Affinity with Controlling)
Education before initiation (4 years, 60 xp):
Artes Liberales (natural philosophy) 1 (5 xp)
Dead Language: Latin (academic usage) 4 (50 xp)
Profession: Scribe (copying) 1 (5 xp)
Society studies after initiation (6 years, 180 xp)
Artes Liberales (natural philosophy) from 1 to 3 (25 xp)
Dead Language: Latin (academic usage) from 4 to 5 (25 xp)
Dead Language: Classical Greek (academic usage) 1 (5 xp)
Dead Language: Arabic (academic usage) 1 (5 xp)
Philosophiae (Refining) 4 (50 xp)
Finesse (Elemental Earth) 2 (15 xp)
Legend Lore (creatures) 1 (5 xp)
Organization Lore: Philosopher of Chartres (initiation scripts) 3 (30 xp)
Parma Magica (elementals) 2 (15 xp)
Theology (history) 1 (5 xp)
Other activities after initiation 5 years, 75 xp):
(Philosophical) Summoning 4 (10 xp)
(Philosophical) Controlling 9 (15 xp + 7.5 xp from Affinity with Controlling)
(Philosophical) Refining 5 (15 xp)
Elemental Air 2 (5 xp + 10 xp from Philosophical Affinity*)
Elemental Earth 2 (10 xp + 5 xp from Philosophical Affinity*)
Elemental Fire 2 (10 xp + 5 xp from Philosophical Affinity*)
Elemental Water 2 (10 xp + 5 xp from Philosophical Affinity*)
*Philosophical Affinity adds half the xp spent on Philosophiae to be split amongst the Elemental Forms any way I want, so since 50 xp was spent on Philosophiae, I spread the 25 xp amongst the Forms.
If spending xp on Controlling is not allowed during Early Life, it simply moves one year from that period into Other activities after initiation, so it doesn't really make a difference except for the narrative. So I will go ahead and adjust his stats on the first post of this topic. He ends up being 26 years old, which I remember being the maximum age for starting characters.
Added personality traits and equipment. I believe the character is ready for play.
There still needs to be a few discussions regarding the exact effects of Inventive Genius for an elementalist hedge wizard, as well as how he may be able to perform Original Research. The exact limits of the Controlling technique must also be discussed.
But this has relatively little immediate impact on the character. I will post a few propositions soon.
Mechanically the character looks ok to me. But I have to check the wording on HMRE and how the elemental things are defined before saying for sure. Will be back about this later.
Philosopher of Chartres (or follower of the Breathen of Purity for that matter) is not listed as a social status virtue. I can see most of them being clerks or some other people in the structure of the church if they are linked to the cathedral school of Chartres. Philosopher of Chartres is not a social status virtue. Now, as we agreed with the troupe regaridng Poor and Wealthy V&F, it can be extrapolated that if you are to be a full time member of Triamore and not be linked somewhere else you do not need to have an outside world status. If you are a Franciscan and want to keep your status, or you want to keep your contact with the mundanes in the villages (Faerie doctor) you need your social status. If you are to be a piece of magical furniture in a building like most magi are, you do not need outside social status virtues. Social status virtues are more than a source of V&F: they are contacts, they are who you are and how you see the world and how you are seen by the world. So, if you want to keep your links with Chartres and be subject to canon law you take clerk or another religious officer status.
It is OK to spend XP in Philosophical controlling. Once you get the ability it is something you have after all. Try not to go overboard there though, since this would affect his opening of the Gift.
Having spent 4 years in Triamore maybe an area lore of 1 would be appropriate? Or was Boniface around just for a few weeks until his Gift was opened?
Reading the story of Boniface I do not see much in the way of elementalism or the reasons for his driven personality flaws. What makes him what he is, really. He is morbidly fat by himself, and you do not need a reason for that (people can be rotund by default) but the other would be cool to be expanded. Not an obligation but I was reading this and thinking that for what I had read he could belong to any supernatural tradition, really.
The magical animal companion is not mentioned at all in the background either. It is a story hook, so give me a reason why it is a story hook, please enduring constitution and obese together look weird to me, but it is your character. I just have never met obese people that were easy on how they take pain or fatigue. Most of them are short of breath actually, not a positive stamina. But well, most characters are very heavily optimized in this saga, so no big thing here.
About Inventive genius, we will make it work for, well, inventing stuff and integrating thingds. However, I would need more details on what he wants to do. His driven flaw is not there to get an idea of what you really want. I am not a rules sharkl regarding new breakthroughs, but inventing an elementalist MT sounds like a major breakthrough? Suggestions welcome, including maybe the break down of the task into smaller projects. thinking about it (and NOT checking the books) Conciata of Bonisagus looks like a reference for the kind of activities you want to do. I need to check HOH: Bonisagus and the Conciata chapter to see how to do that.
Philosopher of Chartres was added as a social virtue because of the House Rules, under Character Creation/Virtues and Flaws: Everybody starts the saga with the Social Status of their non-hermetic tradition. Once they join the covenant this might change, but the previous life of the character is there for his/her formative years.
Seemed like something to replace the Hermetic Magus social virtue, that would justify the relevant access to arcane or social virtues that such character can have. Since Boniface would have spent most of his life outside of a covenant, it would make sense for him to have a social status that represents this. Clerk does a reasonable job at this -- he's obviously literate to the outside world, but he is not a monk or a priest. He would be seen as a teacher or accountant, though with the Blatant Gift very few people would want to hire him.
Regarding wealth, having enough to maintain a decent living is pretty easy for an elementalist with Philosophical Summoning and Elemental Earth. He just need to go to an isolated place and summon silver or other valuable minerals, although in their wild and untreated state. Hedge Magic gives the exemple of a philosophical elementalist with a Summoning Total of 5 being able to summon enough silver to make a coin. As the Summoning Total rises the amount of silver rises exponentially.
Good point. I'll see if I can liberate 5 xp for that.
True, but children with the Gift rarely decide upon the tradition they are initiated into. It is a matter of who was close and learned of that child with the Gift. His only obvious natural talent with it was his Controlling of things around him when his Gift manifested in turbulences.
A character with the Obese flaw is not morbidly fat. He's just large because of fat, so tires more easily. Someone who is morbidly fat would have Obese, a negative Stamina and possibly additional flaws.
I know several people who are quite fat but reasonably healthy otherwise. I was envisioning Boniface as a kind of Budha figure. His positive Stamina means that despite being fat his health isn't bad. Enduring Constitution means that he is tolerant of pain and exhaustion. Partly a result of his training in Summoning, which is based on Stamina and requires him to spend long-term Fatigue and stay fatigued until he lets the summoned phenomenon out of the container (see Hedge Magic p.23).
Some fat people can still function very well physically and withstand pain/fatigue well. I've seen numerous people in the SCA who are very fat (like 5'6" and 300 pounds) but can put on armor and fight all day in the sun.
Kind of forgot about the magical animal in the background. At one point I suggested a pheonix, but I was waiting for approval there because of power issues:
Once the nature of the magical animal is agreed upon, I can work it into the background. It can start appearing at various times in Boniface's life: during childhood when he was exploring the ruins of Spider's Palace, at Triamore while he was being educated, or after opening of his Gift when he started learning about Summoning (perhaps even as the result of a botched or exploding die summoning roll). Given the presence of Philosophical Summoning, a magical animal is easy to work in.
Hedge Magic is a bit contradictory on whether Elementalists have no magic theory at all, or whether they use Philosophiae, Medicine or the Realm Lore as their magic theory depending on their type (philosophical, theurgical, medicinal) of elementalism.
A theory unifying all the types of elementlism is a possibility, but that could only come after he can study the other types. Another direction he could take is the introduction of formulaic-style spells (perhaps cantrip-level magic) that does not always require a stress roll. Yet another avenue could be broadening Refining to make small enchantments. With the numerous limitations of elementalism (as opposed to Hermetic magic), it's easy to find areas of potential improvement through Original Research.
I have some ideas of what Inventive Genius could do. I'll get back to that later. Post is long enough for now!
this might need to change. The case is that we wrote those house rules on status for a "no order" version of the game. having reintroduced the OoH in a hedgie format it seems that you are a hermetic magus. The Chartres guys will be a covenant then, one with strong connections with the cathedral school. quaesitors have a hawk-like attitude towards them because of that, but so far nothing untiward has come from the relationship.
if you want it, you are a Hermetic Magus as a social status. You can still be a clerk, but your allegiance is to the OoH.
As I said, a lot of spinning plates in my hands. Sorry for the confusion.
Added Area Lore: Triamore by removing Profession: Scribe.
Updated background and moved it to the second post.
I still need to integrate the magical animal companion into the character's history. I put some placeholders there to show where I will talk about it once the nature of the companion has been established.
Tell you what about the animal companion. I would do it the other way around: spin the tale you want to tell and we will work it backwards. If you fancy a phoenix, make your character think about it as anphoenix. It might not be the case but it is how your character sees it. Maybe it is a magical hawk that turns to fire, like a phoenix, or maybe it is a daimon playing tricks on you. Or even a Chartres guy that knows your interests and keeps sending a fire elemental (bird form) to trick you. Who knows?