Character Development

Post and discuss your concepts here.

Once concepts are approved, you can post a character sheet (different thread).

A Welsh Rustic Magus, with a focus in archery. Arya and I were talking and when she makes her ruling on this, he may want to pick up Verditius Magic. As it stands they can learn Craft Magic, but he can't learn Verditius Magic...

Sorry for making it so short, but I'm not quite done with the concept, but at least y'all get the main idea!

My proposed character is a Jerbiton magus with a strong academic focus (apprenticed in the Covenant of Schola Pythagoras at Cambridge). His highest art will probably be Intellego, but his Academic abilities are really more central to the concept than my magical abilities will be.

I envision him as being the scion of a London merchant family who was taken as an apprentice while in University. Naturally, Gentle Gift is necessary, but I'm still playing with a some of the other Virtues & Flaws.

What do the rest of you think?

Bearlord (who I believe is having trouble joining the PBP user group) is building a Gently-Gifted Jerbiton as well (more focused on social skills than on academics, I expect, though I could be wrong). I have no problem with both of you playing mundane-focused magi, but I thought I'd let you know in case you mind overlapping somewhat.

If you want to play an academic from Schola, these are your options for parentes:

  • Uncia scholae Bjornaeris: A relatively new addition to the covenant, this cat-like maga left the Rhine to join Schola on account of her academic nature and Intellego bent.
  • Esyllt: An Ex Misc with a strange gift for healing wounds and diseases without the use of vis. Highly regarded by Tytalus and Flambeaux, no one dares call her a "hedgie" in earshot of anyone who's received healing from her :slight_smile:
  • Fredegisa of Guernicus: a young idealist maga who, for some reason, isn't a Quaesitor. (And it'd be rude to ask.) Known for her scholarship into all areas of law: Hermetic, church, and common.
  • Astrolabe of Jerbiton: brilliant minded scientist and magus, has a vast knowledge of Magic Theory and natural philosophy.
  • Edward of Milton: An elderly Mentem magus; princeps of the covenant (also Astrolabe's pater)
  • Lumen of Jerbiton: A young attractive maga of noble birth.

If you don't want to play a second Jerbiton but would like to be a non-Jerb academic from Schola, a loss of your Gentle Gift would be a pretty solid reason for joining the as-yet-unnamed covenant. (Schola only accepts Gently-Gifted magi; if you were previously a member but then lost your Gentle Gift, they wouldn't BOOT you, but it would be expected that you'd go elsewhere, and if you didn't it'd be... awkward.)

Hmmm I don't necessarily mind the overlap, but I wasn't married to the concept either so maybe I'll look at a few other ideas before making my final decision... Any word from Kui?


Mechanically I've been kicking around the idea of playing a magus Mercere with an bent for transportation magic. A valuable asset to his house with a habit of leaving "A wife in every port".

Hi all,

My character concept as I have discussed it with Arya so far is a French Jerbiton maga of noble birth. She was apprenticed at the Montverte covenant in Normandy. She may even be closely related by birth to the mundane lord living close to that covenant. She and her parens fought to protect the lord from the strong influence of some of the other magi at the covenant and it finally resulted in the parens death and my character had the choice of joining his fate or leave the Tribunal. That's why she went to Britain.

She is socially very skilled, particularly towards nobility and the upper classes. She can be rather arrogant towards those she believes is below her rank.

Magic-wise I think she will be a Rego-specialist, with Mentem and Imaginem as seconds.

As for the overlap with another Jerbiton magus I have no problem with that as long as they differ a little in personality, interests and specialisations.

Arya Wrote...

Looks like:

  • Valten has 10 too many spell levels. Additionally, he can raise his Str and Sta both to +2 in exchange for picking up the major story flaw of Favours. "Don't embarrass me, Vermis," Philippus declares disdainfully.

  • Tabanus has 7 points in Virtues but only 6 points in Flaws. Also, not sure if you checked the House Rules, but Gentle Gift doesn't count against your limit of Major Hermetic Virtues, so feel free to take one if you want. Also, "Norman" should be "Anglo-Norman." This allows you to converse with speakers of Langue d'Oil and Old Norse alike at a -2 penalty (but is completely unintelligible to speakers of Middle English, hee). Additionally, Tabanus receives an extra 60 experience to be spent on Academic abilities, to reflect the quality of his university education at Cambridge. (You can either add more academic abilities, or leave him as-is and reduce his age.)

I have 210 levels; 120 from apprenticeship, +30 for Skilled Parens, and +60 from Guild Training. So I think my numbers are allright.
Not too keen on raising the physical stats. He is more of a cerebral magus. And I prever the less severe Mentor over the harsh Favors flaw.
And if Philippus doesn't knock it of with the :Vermis" bit, he will wind up dead. Valten will do it, he will succeed and he will get away with it. Just watch me :smiling_imp:

Aha, I thought I was missing something.

And about your aprenticeship nickname... He only uses it in private. He's not a Tytalus, he would never disrespect any Flambonis in public. Flambeau first, the Order second.

Besides, you knew he was a dick when you wanted to be his filius. >.<

Arya, I've posted an updated version of Tabanus above it integrates all of the changes you suggested except that you seem to have forgotten my free House Virtue (Educated) when calculating my V&F balance.

I also added a rough draft of my background. It's fairly short as I like to flesh my characters out in play, but if you have any suggestions or mandated changes please do let me know.

~ Gremlin44

Oh, I feel silly.

The only covenant in the Snowdonian mountains is Cad Gadu, and they don't take visitors. You might have gone there anyway, only to be turned away, but thought you might want to know.

Valten, Tabanus, and Elysante are all approved and have been moved to the Character Sheets page. They will still need to be advanced somewhat past Gauntlet, which we'll handle individually over the next couple days. Please let me know your preferred mode of contact!

Alright, here is my Damhad-Duidsan concept in a nutshell. Starting with the V/F build, then some explaining/extrapolating and closing with some questions. :wink:

Ex Misc: Damhad Duidsan: Strong Magic Blood: Giantkin - Puissant Corpus - Necessary Condition: Runes

Origin: Heorot Covenant, on the island of Zealand ( Novgorod/Rhine? )

Sigil: Runic Images and Effects in his magic and in/among his tattoos/skin.

V ( 10 ): Affinity: Corpus ( 1 ), Puissant/Affinity: Perdo ( 2 ), Exotic Casting ( 1 ), Major Magical Focus: Disease ( 3 ), Greater Immunity: Disease ( 3 )

F ( 10 ): Disfigured: Runic Tattoos ( 1 ), Warped Magic: Glowing Runes/Glyphs ( 1 ), Incomprehensible ( Rune Magic ) ( 1 ), Blatant Gift ( 3 ), Close Family Ties: Duidsan Tradition ( 1 ), Driven: Revenge Upon The Lineage of Pralix ( 3 )

Alright. I think 'Giant Blooded' as a virtue rather sucks. Compare it to a 'Strong Faerie Blood' Virtue tweaked to reflect a 'giant' bloodline, and Strong Faerie Blood is ... oh so much better. Now I see that there is a 'Magic Blood' virtue in ROP:M, but not a 'Strong' version. Essentially what I want to take for this guy is a 'Strong' version of Magic Blood, akin to Strong Faerie Blood, to reflect the common magical giant lineage within the Damhad-Duidsan tradition. I'm quite open to negotiation as to what the effects of such a bloodline/virtue might be.

The Major Magical Focus: Disease. I see that, as a Minor, covering any variety of Perdo Corpus Disease. As a Major I see that incorporating disease throughout the forms, to include diseases with requisites to have funky effects. Examples would be magical diseases with a Vim requisite so that they inflict might destruction. Or a mentem requisite so that the infected person goes berzerk or goes into fits. Whatever.

I'm trying to really focus on the 'Rune Magic' element of the tradition with the build. The 'Disfigured: Runic Tattoos', should be obvious... large tattoos of the tradition's runes in patterns all over his body, including his face etc. in a warrior kind of pattern. This is typically an unsettling element of his appearance to the average joe. The 'Warped Magic: Glowing Runes/Glyphs' would reflect that he typically either draws runes in the air with his fingers or traces them on his tattoos as he performs his magic, and these actions cause visible magical energy/repercussions as he is casting... every time. So he couldn't say cast a spell totally stealthily because of that. He would always have some rune type stuff going when he is doing his mojo.

Two other things occur to me that would be interesting and/or appealing for this guy to have that are out of the norm. ( I mean... I like flawless magic, but that isn't out of the norm and can probably just be initiated etc. )

One is the common house rule virtue of 'Biomancer' or the like, essentially like Elemental Magic, but for Animal/Herbam/Corpus. I don't know your special rules for Elementalism or how they might transfer to being used in this context, but if you are amiable to the idea... then I'd be interested in discussing it.

Second is a modified version of the rune magic virtue in the integration section of the rune magic section of ancient magic. Now... I'm not asking to have already integrated rune magic and hermeticism. What I might be interested in though is essentially just the Duration/Target of Rune/Inscription, without the whole 'True Change' thing of 'True' Rune Magic. Or I could save the whole thing for an integration project later. :wink:

More later. I've been on a lot of mid-shifts lately, time for sleep soon!

No problem, it happens to the best of us... :slight_smile:

Well it doesn't have to be Snowdonia, I was just looking for an out of the way location and thought the mountainous part of Wales fit the bill (I don't have "Heirs to Merlin") If you have any suggestion let me know. Otherwise, I'll dig out my old copy of "Lions of the North" and try and come up with something from there...


I'm confused. Why? Damhadh-Duidas fought with Pralix, against Damhadh-Allaidh. Did you intend to be of Allaidh's tradition?

Are you kidding? The (Great Strength) and (Great Stamina) are worth two points of virtues alone, and taking wounds in 7-point increments seems pretty awesome for a "leftover" one virtue point. Just MHO, but I always thought, mechanically, Giant Blood was fantastic.

That depends on what kind of giants you're referring to. If you're descended of Jotuns (and you're coming from the Rhine so it seems that's what you were going for?) you'd just be big. Really big. (Size +2, as normal.) Though if you wanted to be from Muspelheim you could represent that with a Greater Immunity: Fire. Or perhaps Mythic Blood: Muspelheim with some power related to flame. If you're descended of Norse trolls (hey, some link them to the Jotuns), you'd be... big (size +1?) and have claws and sharp teeth, maybe you also have Deleterious Circumstances (sunlight), and you'd probably be restricted from having a positive Intelligence. Which seems really bad for a Major Virtue.

Celtic giants? I can't think of any besides the Fomóraig. And Cúchulain himself. If you're a Fomor, your Major virtue should be some kind of relationship to the sea-- perhaps Way of the Sea. If you're descended from the Hound, you're just... really freakin' big (Giant Blood as written in the virtue), and maybe you've got extra fingers and toes.

No "magical" diseases because the lack of definition makes it much too broad a focus. If, in scientific terms, it isn't caused by a virus, bacterium, parasitic fungus, or multicellular parasite, it's not a "disease" in game terms. (Including genetic deficiencies is also too broad, since you can do damn near anything with disrupting regulatory developmental sequences, which wouldn't do anything ex post facto, but I wouldn't want to get into the "it's magic" argument where developmental biology is concerned. I can get tetchy when it comes to "maaaaagic!" arguments about Corpus. Warning: I'm a molecular biologist.)

Again, this will depend on the type of giant lineage you're looking for. If you're a Celtic lineage, your runes will have to be inscribed into rocks, trees, or the earth itself, or perhaps drawn in the surface of a natural body of water; indoors, you'd be hosed. If you're a Nordic lineage, the drawing-glowy-things-in-the-air might work. From what I've seen of others' interpretations of Order of Odin's rune magic, they're always inscribed into something physical, but as I've done far less reading on Norse mythology than Celtic, so you've got more wiggle-room.

I've never heard of Biomancy, but if you mean that you'd like Animal, Herbam, and Corpus to be linked such that when you study one, you gain one experience in the other two, that seems rather weak for a Major Virtue to me. Mechanically, Study Bonus and Book Learner will both yield more experience for 1/3 of the Virtue cost. (This is a big part of the reason I've changed Elemental Magic.) You could DO it as a Major, if you want, but I'd think you'd be hurting yourself mechanically. (I don't want to encourage minmaxing, but neither do I want my players getting frustrated if they're underpowered compared to their fellows.)

Later. Any mysteries will have to be pursued in the course of gameplay, and you can't start working on integrating it before you know it. :slight_smile:

I have added background for my character in the Character Sheet section. I have also made some minor adjustments to Virtues and Flaws, but that will be it.

Your pater is Astrolabe? For your gauntlet, he'd have sent you to some remote place in the Roman Tribunal to copy the text inscribed into the wall of an old pagan temple (probably a tractatus on philosophiae). The travel time would be negligible (you can take a Mercere Portal, for a fee); the time requirement is in copying text off a wall :slight_smile:

Here is some stuff from the ROP:I writeup on the Duidas.

Essentially I'm just saying my guy was raised on tales of how mean and bad Pralix was, coming in and forcing the 'free' magical types of Britain and the North to submit to the Order of Hermes. And so the grudge still lives. Just strip out all the 'infernal' bits, since we are going with a 'clean' version of the tradition.

I think it is great for a warrior type companion or the like. For a mage it is only good if you are looking for a physical warrior type of mage. I'm really 'not' looking for that, I'm looking for a spellcasting stupid ammounts of pain and hurt type of mage. So I'm looking at pushing in a similar but distinct direction with the 'Magic Blood' line to reflect the lineage, but in a way that is more in line with where I want to go with the character. How I'm not sure. But for example the raising the capacity of strength and stamina to 6 is a big deal. But it only really matters if you are going to expend the effort and virtues to get yourself to a 5 to start with so that it takes effect. And that, by normal 5th ed, is at -least- four virtue points by itself, meaning you are already at seven points with giant blood and the six strength and six stamina. Not a good recipe for a guy who throws battle-magic. More a recipe for a companion body-guard who is awesome and terrifying in his own right. And that isn't what I am looking for. I just want to reflect the lineage, but with a different focus.

I'm going for more of a Norse Jotun/giant type, being from around Denmark. Perhaps a blend of the Gaelic and Norse rune traditions. Heorot is a covenant on the island of Zealand, which... technically falls in the Novgorod Tribunal, but is much closer to the Rhine. In the fluffery they founded it on top of the ruins of the city of Lethra, formerly the capital of the Danish Kings, and specifically that once belonged to the legendary King Hrothgar in the 6th century during the time of the Beowulf saga.

Essentially my posit is that this particular offshoot of the Damhad tradition left Britain shortly after the absorption into the Order of Hermes and joined this covenant. Part of the original purpose of this covenant was to try and study the Vitkir, and so they wanted to come, participate, and possibly benefit from any insights into rune magic. And as rune mages themselves, potentially be of rather significant assistance in understanding things that they encountered etc.

Well first I would posit that you need to either set aside your 'day job' training and accept that diseases function under -vastly- different rules/mechanics in the game ( Reference Art & Academe. Humors aren't just a theory, they are the truth for example, in canon. ), or House Rule it to a functioning you find acceptable.

Second... I don't consider a Major Focus incorporating magical diseases to be any more broad than say a focus in 'Damage', or 'Men'. Disease is an example of a -minor- focus in the core book. Upping that to a Major should get a logical scale up in broadness/effect? You can inflict direct damage with -lots- of different arts, in lots of different ways, and it would apply to all of them. A major in diseases I would think is much the same.

The 'Necessary Condition: Runes' flaw and runecaster motif is intrinsic to the Duidsan tradition. They traditionally have used ash or chalk to write runes on themselves or objects while they cast effects on enemies, or carried runed objects to use as foci. I'm just taking that a bit further and incorporating runic tattoos and symbols/effects into the magic. That is all based on the Ex Misc. tradition he is from, not from the type of Giant he may or may not be descended from. Also this sort of incorporates some advances in 'integrating' their magic with hermetic stuff, theoretically.

Well the essential crux point is not the exp gain part of the virtue, for either Elementalist or for 'Biomancer'. The more important part is the ability to create spells which ignore requisites for the other forms combined into the virtue. Elementalist would allow one to, for example, create a 'Fireball' spell which does lots of fire damage and then explodes into noxious fumes filling the area and doing -more- damage. And, while the spell would have an Auram requisite, they could ignore it in casting and labwork and use their ( presumably higher ) Ignem score for all the totals.

For a Corpus guy the ability to add in effects from Animal/Herbam while ignoring the requisites in casting/usage would be the 'big deal' of taking it.

Well, like I said, I don't want the 'True Change' stuff, just the Duration/Target, to reflect the rune magic of the Duidas tradition which already would theoretically be incorporated? If you would rather I not, all the same, that is fine however.

Okay, that makes sense.

Well, I'd recommend picking Mythic Blood: Jotun and picking a power that has the right flavour for what you want. Though if you get a more detailed idea of what you're looking for we can probably come up with something original.

I think that statement might make some purists twitch, but IMO the Vikings conquered and subjugated the British Isles repeatedly and consistently enough throughout time, that some blurring of distinction between the two mythological traditions is fairly plausible.

...Which means, I am making a conscious effort to suppress my purist notions. :slight_smile:

Heorot is already established in this saga (comes with the territory of populating a world with all the PCs you've ever played - makes it easier to roleplay NPCs when they're all your old PCs, but it does put some limits on playing with the world). I could probably rewrite specific NPC backgrounds, but I might forget to check my notes when it comes into play, and I, for one, hate having to retcon to cover up my own brainfarts. I'd prefer to be consistent :slight_smile: This particular Heorot was established as a political strike to claim northern territory for the Rhine. The most questionable tradition you've got there is our former resident suspected Diedne.

Including "magical diseases" is too broad because you could say any health anomaly is a "magical" disease. The limit to "magic!" handwaving in this saga, where disease is concerned, is that it has to actually be a real disease caused by the introduction of some kind of foreign body (so no Lou Gehrig's or Alzheimer's). Actually, most degenerative neural illnesses would be, in game terms, Perdo Mentem effects, and thus not "diseases" at all. And with a focus of disease, remember it doesn't just cover causing the affliction, but would also cover curing it. And that, in essence, is why it's too broad for this saga.

"Damage" and "Men" would both be far too broad for even a major focus, as well.

Why not go with "necromancy" then? It would cover all of the traditional malaises (leprosy, dysentery, pneumonia, etc) and then some, while excluding the curing of said illnesses.

If your tradition is based on your Giantish lineage, then the two are interlinked.

Having not seen it in play before, that seems like it might be open to more abuse than in the case of Elementalist. At least, the first things that spring to mind of how I'd abuse it, kind of appall me from a Storyguide standpoint.

...I'm not sure what that says about me, but there you have it. :slight_smile:

No, all the really cool stuff should be pursued during gameplay. What reason would your character have to pursue the Order of Odin if you already had access to the cool bits about their secrets?