Character Concepts

Unless someone sees a problem, I am going to try to make the Intelligo / Vim magi work.
Some questions:

I saw some reference to an interview. Not sure how that will be handled, but I presume I need to get the design fleshed out and approved first?

Given the cosmology, how much vis does the personal vis source give? I am hoping it is 4. To make it more interesting, I was thinking of a plant that I harvest each quarter, that produces various kinds of vis, but my parens who gave it to me was never able to find the pattern to it. I would also take Skilled Parens as one of my virtues.

From reading the core book, I believe I can take Second Sight as an ability without spending a virtue on it?

Can I take "Understanding Supernatural" as a minor focus?

Given the premise, free study looks like it might be interesting to take. Any objection? (It may turn out to be less useful, but so be it.)

Given the setting, it strikes me that there is probably less interest in, and possibly even resistance to, hermetic breakthroughs. Would Driven to make a Major hermetic Breakthrough" be an acceptable flaw? At this stage he would be trying to get information about all kinds of supernatural phenomena to sue to inspire such a breakthrough.

The interview is basically having the current players (Wits and Bearlord) letting you know if there is anything in your character design that they object to. They are basically focusing on how their own magi would react to your character when they will meet him, although we will not go as far as roleplay the interview. So they may ask questions such as "Why is this magus interested in joining a rebel covenant instead of an established one", which you must answer in some way by your character design or background.

The guideline given on the core book suggest about one tenth what the covenant as a whole can harvest. Based on that, I'd say no more than 2 pawns per year. The exact amount would depend of the kind of vis it provides, and with an unusual frequency it might even end up a fractional number (like 1.8 pawns per year on average). You may try to convince me to allow more, but it will be a tough sell.

As to a source that gives raw vis from a variety of Arts, I don't see a problem with it. There would need to be some sort of theme to the source, so it wouldn't provide vis from all Arts.

If a supernatural ability is selected at character creation, you must purchase the virtue. So you have to take the Second Sight virtue to have the ability.

It is true that a Gifted person can learn a supernatural virtue after play has begun, gaining the virtue without needing corresponding flaw(s) to pay for it, but that is not as easy as it looks.

In what ways would that be narrower than all of InVi?

It could be, but low resources also means few books not much raw vis, so it may not be as useful as in a normal saga. (The same would be true of Book Learner, as fewer books will be available.)

Breakthroughs requires decades of dedicated research. As such, they are expensive in time and resources. A rebellious covenant like this one is an environment that doesn't provide a fertile ground for this. On the other hand, established covenants may indeed be stiffling such research from a just-Gauntleted magus (keeping it one of the privilege of well-established magi). Would a character driven to pursue a Breakthrough leave an established covenant? Perhaps. But there, at least, you would at least have regular access to a lab in which to pursue your research. This might not be the case at a yound rebellious unrecognized covenant, which may struggle to finance its normal operations (let alone the costs of continual research needed for a Breakthrough).

So I'm not saying that it cannot be done, or at least that the character cannot believe it can be done or that it is the better way to achieve it. I'm just telling you, the player, that it's unlikely to happen and may result in sub-optimal choices for your magus -- perhaps even causing friction with your covenant-mates if being Driven (particularly if it's taken as a Major flaw) negatively impacts the covenant.

I'll let Wits and Bearlord weight in on this -- after all, that's excatly the kind of considerations that they would base their decision to accept (or not) such a magus. :laughing:

I will wait for comments from the others on most of your feedback (I can happily adjust to make things work). On the minor focus, I would expect that such a focus would not help with detecting or understanding spells, or the form of vis. I would expect it to help with detecting regios and other manifestations of supernatural creatures or forces. I would also expect, if we ever get there, for it to apply when opening an apprentices ares. Is there a better phrasing for it? For detecting Vis sources, and understanding them, I would expect to have to use his magic without the benefit of the focus.

None of Japik or Prochorus are particularly scholarly so that could be a niche to fill within our covenant, but as Arthur says we are very low on books and lab equipment and being a low resource saga it will take lots of effort to increase the amounts of these. So if your character is very focused on research and breakthroughs he might decide he is better suited at one of the bigger covenants where he has at least some reliable access.

I like the Intellego/Vim concept but why not focus on a more exploring theme and have a focus in finding and recognizing vis sources and regios? Not sure if that might be a too narrow focus for this particular saga, that is up to Arthur to decide.

One of the first questions would be why do you seek to join our small and resource-poor covenant instead of one of the bigger ones like Fengheld, Durenmar or Oculus Septentrionalis?

A major Driven personality flaw might cause some problems but if it means you create your own niche within our covenant and it also helps the covenant as a whole to prosper then it could work fine.

I like the suggestions of him being interested in finding regios, and secondarily vim sources. I don't think such a search is clear enough to be a major personailty flaw, but it should work as a minor.

I could not find the information on the covenant aura. I assume it is relatively low. Do we even know what it is yet?

I am working on an additional driver beyond curiosity for why this magus would join this covenant. I will post them soon.

In this thread Quercus found out the general extension and strength of the auras on the island and it's surroundings.

The aura around the tree is 3. There are equally strong auras around the pillars that rises out of the sea some five miles north of the island. We haven't been able to examine them closer yet.

I just realized from the covenant info that Arthur has put together at the top of our forum that we will be losing most of our books when Pytheas and Quercus leaves so I would urge you to ask for some books as your starting possessions that will be brought into the covenant. Such things will also make it easier for Japik and Prochorus to accept the new magi.

I have worked out rough virtues, flaws, personality, and explanation. I think it hangs together. Feel free to tell me if it won't work.

Herman is a covenant-raised Bonisgaus. Affinity for and Puissance with Intelligo and Magic Theory.
He has two problems which combine to repeatedly get him in trouble, which is why his parens (who actually thinks he has great potential) suggested that he needs to get away from the center of things. Herman has a small faerie friend (Herman is not sure what variety this guy is).
The particular problem is that Herman is (minor) compulsively curious anyway. His friend regularly talks him into investigating things he really shouldn't. At least twice he was caught investigating the wards on a magus sanctum. (He had not entered the sanctum or the consequences would have been quite serious.) He almost caused accidents investigating things he should have left alone in his Parens lab. (again, he did not actually break anything, or his Parens would be MUCH less friendly.)

His personal Vis source is a potted plant that produces leaves with vis semi-annually. Examination has revealed that the plant appears similar to a mandrake, but isn't one. It has produce Herbum, Corpus, Terram, Aurum, and Aquam vis in the last 15 years.

At the moment I have given up on the magical focus. I would like to take a minor focus, but I have not been able to construct one that makes sense.

He is personally interested in the supernatural, not in the sense of spells, but in the sense of other effects such as vis, regios, creatures, ... He is focussed on understanding them (which he has been told repeatedly is either impossible or nonsense. )

He is actually very good at explaining things (Good Teacher). At the moment I plan to give him both book learner and free study, even though both may be hard to use.

Yeah, I think the minor focus would have to be something like "regiones" or "magical animals" or somesuch - the problem is, it has to be pretty narrow, which easily lapses into trivial if that particular kind of thing isn't around. On the other hand, if you build your concept around a given kind of thing, then something like that might end up being around :slight_smile:

Do you tell us about the farie or the curiosity trouble? I think Prochorus wouldn't mind, but might say something like Better keep that thing in check. You never know when molestation might ensue.

In the interview, Herman will mention the faerie (sorry, I will name him) who likes to visit him. He will talk about investigating things (in fact, he probably will talk too much about that.) In the course of it he will make mention of upsetting the seniors magi just by looking at things. When asked, he will describe what he was looking at. He will mutter something about "I didn't think that was personal" (which misses many points, but he doesn't get that.) He does have 1 level in the code, so he is not completely oblivious to the rules.

One possibility for a minor focus, if you were to limit it to one realm I would be ok with it. So "Investigating Magic" or "Investigating Faerie" would be fine.

Arthur, that seems quite reasonable. Of the 5 major supernatural virtues, which would you class as Faerie (obviously, Strong Faerie blood, but any of the others) and which as Magic? If a reasonable number of those count as Faerie some of the time (I can imagine that with some it can be either, and you will decided when it matters), then I would take Investigate Faerie as a minor focus, even though he is not House Merinita.

Japik wouldn't mind about the faerie friend and the curiousity resulting in problems either since he is a prankster and quite curious and carefree in general himself. It might be that the covenant needs someone that takes things a bit more seriously and controls things if they get out of hand though.

Here's my thoughts on the possible soucres of those virtues:

  • Entrancement can be Faerie, Magic or Infernal
  • Greater Immunity can be from any of the 4 realms, though some specifi immunities can occur more often from particular realms (such as immunity to fire, which would more often be Magic or Infernal)
  • Greater Purifying Touch is more often from the Divine realm, although it can also be from Magic or Faerie
  • Shapeshifter can be from any of the 4 realms, though less often from Divine
  • Strong Faerie Blood is obviously from Faerie, as you mentioned

Note that the same can be said of the minor virtues also. Most can come from many different realms.

Thanks Arthur. I'll take it. Given that, I am going to spend 30 xp on giving Herman Faerie Lore 3.

What are the guidelines for books and silver we bring? Given that he has a personal vis source, I would not expect him to be given any other vis.

Also, can you suggest what covenant he should have grown up and been apprenticed at? Something in the middle range of sizes in the Rhine would make sense. Would High German be his birth language?

Should I start a new thread to post the character details, or just post them here?

You should start a new topic for your character's details. I suggest you use the first post as a place holder for the final stats of your character. You can then edit that post as his stats evolve. It easier than trying to track down current stats in pages and pages of posts and comments.

As for the resources he would bring with him, you simply give me a list of priorities (3 of them), with a quick description of what you'd like. For example, you might say that your first priority is a lab, then some books on Corpus and/or Vim, and finally some silver. That might result in a standard lab, a pair of Q8 tractatus and 5 pounds of silver.

But there's no hurry for that, as I prefer to wait and see what the final character will be like before deciding on the resources.

One possibility for a home covenant, with your focus in faeries, you could have him coming from Irencilla -- particularly if your pater shared your field of interest. You might have annoyed the magi of that covenant so much that they refused to accept you once you passed your Gauntlet.

Just letting people know I'm working on my concept for the Jerbiton member of Ponderers of Weight and Distance. Trying to figure out the direction to go for this concept has been a challenge.

I wrestled with a concept for a while. I was never happy with it, and now I think I have something.
Quick background, Onesiohorus was originally apprenticed to a Flambeau, when the Flambeau master realize that his apprentice was so slow he decided that he wouldn't be a good combat magus and sold the poor lad off to a Jerbiton. The Jerbiton saw how well-spoken and at ease the young man was in social situations, and made great efforts to Gentle his Gift. I can swap out some of the Im spells for more Ignem spells to represent the time spent with the Flambeau, but some of those Im spells a Flambeau might also have...

Characteristics: Int +2, Per +1, Pre +1, Com +5, Str +1, Sta +1, Dex 0, Qik -4
Size: 0
Age: 28 (28), Height: 5'7'', Weight: 160 lbs, Gender: Male
Decrepitude: 0
Warping Score: 0 (0)
Confidence: 1 (3)
Virtues and Flaws: The Gift, Gentle Gift, Great Communication × 2, Well-Traveled (50/50), Cautious with Bargain, Deft Form (Ignem) [Form: Ignem], Affinity with Ignem, Hermetic Magus, Puissant Ignem, Social Contacts (Choose)*, Master of None, Poor Quickness × 1, Greedy, Avaricious, Favors (Someone), Slow Caster
Dodge: Init: -4, Attack --, Defense -1, Damage --
Fist: Init: -4, Attack +3, Defense -1, Damage +1
Kick: Init: -5, Attack +3, Defense -2, Damage +4
Soak: +1
Fatigue levels: OK, 0, -1, -3, -5, Unconscious
Wound Penalties: -1 (1-5), -3 (6-10), -5 (11-15), Incapacitated (16-20), Dead (21+)
Abilities: Flemish 5, Latin 4, Artes Liberales 1, Parma Magica 1, Magic Theory 3, Great Weapon 2, Area Lore: Area 2, Brawl 3, Folk Ken 1, Survival 1, Bargain 4, Athletics 3, Carouse 1, Charm 2, Concentration 1, French 4, German 4, Swim 2
Arts: Cr 5, In 6, Mu 2, Pe 0, Re 1, An 0, Aq 0, Au 0, Co 0, He 0, Ig 6+3, Im 6, Me 0, Te 0, Vi 0
Encumbrance: 0 (0)
Spells Known:
Pilum of Fire (CrIg 20) +15
An Enemy Awash in the Pure Sigil of the Magus (CrIm 15) +12
False Window (CrIm 5) +12
Aura of Beguiling Appearance (MuIm 10) +9
Aura of Childlike Innocence (MuIm 10) +9
Aura of Ennobled Presence (MuIm 10) +9
The Ear for Distant Voices (InIm 20) +13
Prying Eyes (InIm 5) +13
Wizard's Sidestep (ReIm 10) +8
Taste of the Spices and Herbs (MuIm 5) +9
A Visible Demand for Repair (MuIm 5) +9
Taste of the Dulled Tongue (PeIm 5) +7

I need to tweak some of the abilities around a bit. I need to give him some Leadership, but this is the first draft I've been happy with. His priorities are grogs a ship and material wealth (it could be a valuable cargo) that needs to be traded. I'd rather have him directed to find and add magical resources as a condition of joining rather than have him bring in books and/or vis.

As a reminder...

I see one Flaw that I'm not familiar with (Master of None) as well as many spells from various sourcebooks. I may allow some of them, but I suggest looking at ways to replace some of these.

I don't have a problem with the low number of Ignem spells, since spells are usually taught in the last few years of apprenticeship.

If the other Wits and Bearlord are ok with the concept, then you can start a thread to discuss more of the details. :smiley: