Consequences of blindness for a magus

For context: For building a Seeker of House Bonisagus I am currently going through major flaws that could be interesting to play.

How do you think does blindness interact with Second Sight?
Makes no sense because no sight means no second sight either?
While blind regarding the normal visual sense, second sight will reveal ghosts, regio boundaries, etc.?

Can a magus learn from books by getting the text read out loud by someone else? Does that induce a penalty for the source quality?
Blindness from a flaw can for sure not be healed (without changing the flaw to something else as the only thing that could come out of a story). Can it be overcome temporarily? With CrCo, with InIm, with both, with none, something else?

What are other constraints to keep in mind?

Any other reasons this will actually turn out not being fun to play?

Blind magi can see with a simple InIm 5 (like HP p.84 Fingers for Eyes) their masters certainly would have taught them asap. If a little older, they might also see through their familiars' eyes (ArM5 p.105 Shared Senses).
Blindness hence doesn't keep them from reading or working in the lab, but can make travel and interaction with others outside their lab and covenant more challenging.


I would say you can't have Second Sight if you don't have any sight. You can ask your storyguide if you're allowed to take Second Hearing, Second Smell etc. as an alternative. If you want a blind magus to detect regio boundaries without InVi magic, you might be better off with Magic Sensitivity (damages your magic resistance but is useful for detecting regio boundaries, as the Ease Factor is quite low).

Blindness from a flaw can't be overcome with CrCo as the blindness is part of your essential nature. InIm can allow you to bypass your eyes for sensing, so has been used in canon to work around sight problems (as One Shot pointed out). A divine miracle or pilgrimage could remove it.

I was about to ask about the difference between Second Sight and Magic Sensitivity (when we are not talking about seeing through illusions).

Second hearing (if the storyguide approves) would probably have the same effect, right? Although it will of course not work against visual illusions, but hearing based illusions. (Not that visual illusions had any effect on a blind person anyhow...)

I dunno about that. I think you COULD have Second Sight even if you don't have any sight. It just won't give you as much benefit.

Second Sight grants you the ability to see through illusions, but you can't see in the first place, so that's of no benefit to you. (And the ability doesn't work through InIm. So sorry.) However, perceiving naturally invisible things (like ghosts and regio boundaries) might work. What if those are the only thing you CAN see? I can have a hell of a lot of fun with a necromancer magus who sees dead people and ONLY dead people.

The section on Magic Spirits in RoP:M (pg 100) explicitly says that when humans are sensing spirits through appropriate magics (such as second sight), they're actually using their imagination to come up with a sensible interpretation of the incomprehensible species the spits are giving off. As visual creatures, humans usually interpret it via sight, but this isn't actually a requirement - given the appropriate magic a blind character could still sense a spirit.

Similarly, the spirit's "silent speech" is usually interpreted as an auditory thing, but could be via smells without hindering communication.

Based on that (and the fact that I have a vague feeling there are references somewhere to Second Sight working on more than just visual illusions, albeit I can't remember where exactly) , I'd suggest that Second "Sight" can still be used when you're blind, but the information would come in through other senses (probably hearing most of the time), as that's what your imagination's used to working through. It might be different for someone who was relatively recently blind, however.

I would totally allow a blind person to have Second Sight.

  1. As already mentioned, Second Sight isn't actually about sight. It's the ability to sense something beyond the senses of normal (wo)men. Just as Salutor referenced above. Second Sight is simply the expression assigned to it within the british (celtic?) culturespace.

  2. Perhaps the most iconic combination of a virtue and a flaw I can think of right now, is One Eyed and Second Sight - "This eye sees this world, but this one..." (points to the empty eye socket) "... this one sees the next world." Blind+Second Sight is just an extension of this.

So even for a magus born blind, reading could be learned and done with a simple InIm? Is that consensus? Sound like blindness is a lot less severe for magi than for others then.

It would have to be the right InIm spell - you couldn't use a Vision target spell, for instance, because that makes information come through the sense of Sight, which you don't have. Fingers for Eyes is a room target spell, and therefore only works if you're actually in a room. You'd also need to penetrate to see people with Magic Resistance properly - otherwise you'll just get a rough outline where you can't see.

Mmh, ok so e.g.

would all work? Of course the penetration requirement for things with resistance applies to all as well.

Oh and


To add to what Salutor said, Second Sight allows hearing, too:

Nearly everything is less severe for magi.

Circle of Restored Eyesight requires a couple of extra magnitudes for duration Ring, but otherwise I think these should work. You probably want to learn Unravelling the Fabric of Imaginem as well so that you can stop seeing from that particular place (although actually, at the spell levels we're talking about you may be able to non-fatiguingly spont it).

This has a number of drawbacks.

Firstly, target Boundary means it's a ritual.

You also need a clearly defined standard sized boundary - "the reflection of your voice" doesn't work for that. For such a spell (and similarly and more practically a Target: Structure spell), I'd think there were two ways it could be designed. Either you can see everything in the Target (which is likely to be difficult to process for large areas), or you can see from a single point within the Target, and have to concentrate to move your perspective - with the associated problems with trying to do anything else at the same time. You could design it to let you do one other thing at the same time automatically - probably walking - but you'd still then have to make concentration rolls to move your perspective and talk or spellcast.

Thirdly, the wide area covered would mean in my eyes (if you caught another magus in it) it crossed the line from "yes, it's technically illegal but any sane Quaesitor is going to tell someone making a complaint to go away and stop wasting their time" to "actually prosecutable".

You'd be better off designing a formulaic with a non-standard target.

Oh yeah, sure. Circle was a standard target so I missed ring for duration. So +2 Ring for a total level of 4.

Are there any guidelines for that? Boundary was just the smallest target fitting the idea. Actually target and range should be a subset of what my voice can reach. Something that starts to fade a couple of paces away from me. Maybe different versions for different ranges.

Edit: Does it need a range greater personal at all? How would an effect look like that can grant a target other than the caster such capabilities?

It's on page 114 of the main book (bottom of the middle column). Essentially, you have to use the standard* ranges for spontaneous spells, but it's possible to design formulaic spells using different ranges. This is usually higher level than the closest equivalent "standard" range.

*Some virtues give you access to other non-standard ranges you can also use spontaneously.

Thanks. Somehow missed that paragraph before.

But what is the closest target to what I want to achieve? Room for a rather small radius, structure for a large one? Or room and use size modifier for more range? Doesn't really seem to fit though as all those targets... Oh, wait. Just take the hearing target for magical senses... That would be equivalent to structure...

Have to think a bit more about this.

What's wrong with the existing spell called Eyes of the Bat (InAu 25, core book)?

It is a good spell useful for a blind magus.

But it has its obvious limitations: you just "'hear' the boundaries of air", so no reading by it, and generally limited capabilities to analyze what lies beyond those boundaries.


Nothing wrong... Just too high a level of the "wrong" art...