I have long felt that games that start with magi right out of Gauntlet have a tendency to be a little less than exciting. Sure, there's a whole new world of magic to discover. But it seems that the game gets too bogged down with people wanting to go to the lab instead of adventuring or politicking or what-have-you. So I want to give Magi the opportunity to have a couple of years post-Gauntlet to hone some skills or get into some trouble before the game starts.
Number of Years
After some careful consideration, I have decided that magi may age themselves however many years they wish. If you want to be fresh out of Gauntlet at 25 years old, so be it. If you wish to be a 90 years young arch-magus, so be it. Please keep in mind that aging is a thing, starting the Winter you reach 35; be careful about aging too much as you may find your magus incapable of doing much due to becoming crippled or worse.
There are 4 seasons every year: Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. During a single season, a magus/maga may perform one of the following activities:
- Take a flat 10 XP
- Work in the Lab (normal rules apply, including gaining Exposure XP)
- Earn extra Vis wages (3 pawns of any technique or form, or combination thereof)
- Do any activity that requires a season's worth of time, such as write a book, study Vis, etc. You will gain Exposure XP for these activities in addition to the result of that activity
- Improve your lab (the normal rules found in Covenants apply for Refinement, Occupied Size, gaining Virtues/Flaws, etc.)
Keep in mind that when it comes to refining your lab, it takes 1 season to refine and then 1 season to instill any Virtues (although the Hidden Defect Flaw can be either gained or removed in the season of Refinement, should the dice indicate such). As a side note, all magi have their own, independent, separate buildings for their sanctums and labs. Therefore, all labs receive the Dedicated Building Virtue for free.
In a single year, a magus/maga may perform the following seasonal activities:
- Take up to 3 seasons of flat XP advancement (30 XP)
- Work up to 3 seasons in the lab
- Earn one seasons' worth of Vis wages
- Spend 1 season refining your lab
- Spend 1 season instilling virtues in your lab
- Spend 2 seasons performing other activities (writing a book, studying Vis, etc.)
Be aware that, while you as many seasons to advance your magus/maga as you'd like, some planning is necessary. Keep in mind that Exposure XP is gained when performing tasks (except taking flat XP), so it's not a total wash/loss should you decide to do one of those side activities. But be prepared to plan ahead for things.
Please note that all normal rules apply for any activities, which includes any/all dice rolls. I would prefer a link to whatever online dice roller you decide to use in your accounting for any/all activities that require said roll.
Characters who wish to initiate into one of the House Mystery Cults may do so with the following parameters:
- Initiation costs 1 season, not including whatever requirements are needed to be able to initiate
- You must fully document the entire Initiation Script, to include the magus who has the Virtue you are attempting to acquire.
- The magus who is acting as your Mystagogue must be a canon magus. He or she can be from any Tribunal, but if they are not from the Normandy Tribunal, seeking them out costs 1 additional season for finding them and traveling to them.
- You must Initiate into one of the cults/paths/roads/etc. from the Mystery Cults book; no custom cults are allowed.
Please note that all rules for Initiation must be followed, and all requirements must be met. If you do not meet the requirements, you cannot Initiate. And on this particular point, any dice rolls that are required to Initiate MUST be included here in your character application/thread.
No familiars will be allowed at the start of the game as this is a really good hook to roleplay. I'd rather go through story arcs that deal with you finding the particular animal and befriending it instead of just saying that you spent the time and bound it to you. This is such a great RP opportunity, and I'd rather not waste it with a couple of dice rolls and hand waving.