Covenant Building

Actually, we're on the shores of a loch, about a mile from the nearest small town (Cill Chuimein). The islands are about 100-150 paces from shore.

Rights & Customs is a Residents hook, and refers to the traditions that the covenfolk have (both those that they have developed over the years, and those that the magi have given them or allowed them to have). Ungoverned is more of a "This place is lawless," and is more of a Wild West tone than a "Big City".

Minor Surroundings Hook: Faerie Court - Three miles north of Insula Canaria is a Faerie Burgh or mound. Documents left by Scylla detail her exploration of the Burgh. Her tractatus( in the Covenant library) speak about a regio located on the mound and some negotiations with it's inhabitants. In exchange for the Covenant folk leaving tokens for the Fae and holding a festival in the fall the Court gives a gift once a year. The mound has a faerie aura of 3.

Residence Hook minor - Rights and Customs - The Covenant folk follow a set of customs to appease the local fae like leaving the first fish of the catch on certain rocks, leaving a loaf a bread in the fields and putting out bowls of milk at certain times of the year. They also hold a festival in the summer that includes the telling of tales of the folk of the mound. Because of the ties with the local clan, the Covenat folk have the right to go on cattle raids and the occasional war party.

Resident Boon minor - Veteran Fighters - The close ties to the clan leads to many of the men ( and some of the women ) to be trained as fighters.

Resident Boon Minor - Strong Community - Because of the strong connection to the local Clan (Glengarry), the Covenant folk look after each other and are suspicious of strangers.

15 BP Vis source - 3 pawns of Muto vis. Collected after the fall festival at the Burgh. It comes in the form 3 opals that tend to change their colors. A note from Scylla says to check this vis for alignment as the faerie sometimes put glamour on the stones.

10 BP - Tractatus Quality 10 Faerie Lore - A study of the Faerie burgh located north of Insula Canaria. Most focuses on the exploration of the regio found on the burgh and the negotiations with the local faerie lord and his court.

((I will add more later))

could you explain this line then:

Is this in the covenant or not?

I was of the opinion that the covenant was really very large. Our main buildings are on the coast, near the village. There was a common lab (now a ruin) on the island with the stronger aura. And possibly more buildings around and about the place too.

There appears to be some people have a concept of this layout that others lack. We have an aura that covers a 60 mile long loch with a boon that indicates an aura up to five miles across, I don't know if some boons (such as unnatural law) could be taken or if the history of the place precludes these as a possibility... how large is the covenant itself? If we did take unnatural law would it affect the entire aura?

Ooo, I like this!

Sounds good. We can add that to the "Covenant Traditions" page.

Good, good.

Yes it is. The covenant proper (that is, everything protected by its Aegis) consists of everything within the crushed stone path and the wooden piers, and the shoreline connecting the ends of the piers to the paths. The covenant is roughly 300 meters long and about 160 meters deep at the farthest point from the shore.

The labs, covenant buildings, custodes' cottages, and other important things are within the Path. Covenfolk cottages, pastures, etc are Outside.

Yeeeeah...I reread the description of Vast Aura (p. 8 ), and it didn't click to me that it actually defined the size of the Aura...or how bloody big the loch is. So, as cool as it might be to have the whole loch have a weak (say, 1) magic aura over the whole thing, I think I'll drop this boon.

One thing I have wanted to play with is the idea of an aura having a unnatural law that inverts the social effects of the gift within the aura. It would only apply within the covenant, not out on adventures, and I don't know how others would feel about it...

There had been a spell proposal like this quite a while back. The problem in the proposal was that normally Muto-type effects are more difficult the further things are shifted. But doing such a reversal, changing -3 to +3 and -6 to +6 effectively has a further shift be easier. So this doesn't fit with most Magic-Realm stuff, including Hermetic magic. This also means a Major Flaw is acting like a Major Virtue for a large portion of the time. Meanwhile anyone who put the points into Gentle Gift has a Major Virtue become a Major Flaw much of the time. I find that extremely unfair between the players.

A zero would still be a zero, and it only works inside the covenant. Also it would not be Hermetic magic, it would be an unnatural law boon for the covenant.

Exactly. That means you're giving a Flaw to the magus with Gentle Gift. See below:

Normal Gift (no cost) -> +3
Gentle Gift (Major Virtue) -> 0, so -3 compared to not having Gentle Gift (equivalent penalty off of normal of a Major Flaw)
Blatant Gift (Major Flaw) -> +6, so +3 compared to not having Blatant Gift (equivalent bonus off of normal of a Major Virtue)

Thus, for a large number of interactions, this turns the points someone spent on a Major Virtue into a Major Flaw and turns the points someone earned for a Major Flaw into bonus points as a Major Virtue. There are so many cases where interactions at a covenant matter and where you can manage to mitigate a lot of the penalties when you are away from the covenant. I see this as wildly unfair if anyone has either Gentle Gift or Blatant Gift unless everyone has exactly the same one.

The reason I generalized to Magic Realm, including Hermetic magic as only a subset, is because the Magic Realm has roughly the same degrees of difficulty as Hermetic Magic. It doesn't really matter at all that this is not Hermetic magic. Not all things are equal, but if you can do something multiple ways in the Magic Realm the degrees of difficulty nearly always or always scale the same way. Thus such inversion is very different from all sorts of Magic Realm guidelines.

And my point is that the unnatural law boon doesn't tie to limits of the magic realm or hermetic theory, it means quite literally that the rules are different within the aura.

I still disagree with your assessment that it turns gentle gift into a flaw, since zero is still zero, which is what others still have, and part of the question becomes what is done inside the aura versus outside- apprentices might learn faster from blatantly gifted, but if you have to leave the covenant your normal penalty still exists.

And this may well not be the right saga for this, but I thought I would at least throw it out there and see what others thought.

It would be great for urban covenant. Less useful here.

While this part is ultimately irrelevant compared to the unfairness aspect, I still disagree. It is a Magic Aura, isn't it? One powered by the Magic Realm? Why shouldn't we be able to write this as some power from the Magic Realm? I seen nothing in the Boon description at all to suggest anything otherwise.

You are contradicting yourself. Maybe that's why I'm confused. You said "inverts" before. Usually when everything we're talking about is addition the inverse would be the additive inverse, also known as the negative of the value. So 0 -> 0, -3 -> +3, and -6 -> +6. I've stated that a few times, and you have not corrected me. It still fits with your original statement. Now you're saying others have zero as well, which would be the penalty being eliminated/cancelled/etc. as opposed to inverted. If that's the case, then there is just a reduction in the value of Gentle Gift and the penalty for Blatant Gift. I still think that is unfairly giving half the utility of Gentle Gift to those without it.

But, since the statement about "inverts" hasn't been changed, I'll go over the math differently and provide and example. By spending 0 points you get a +3 in the Aura. By spending 3 points of Virtues on Gentle Gift you get 0 in the Aura. 0 is three points worse than +3, so spending the 3 points of Virtues has caused you to have a penalty of 3 relative to not having spend the points on the Virtue. Thus the Virtue is acting like a Flaw. Now let's look at someone with the Gentle Gift and Good Teacher, teaching at +5 without having to extend their PM. This player spend 4 points of Virtues. Another picks up 3 points of Virtues by taking Blatant Gift and gets to teach at +6 by not extending their PM inside the covenant. Why should someone with the Blatant Gift be inherently better at instructing apprentices than someone with Gentle Gift and Good Teacher?

My argument is with the description of someone who loses the +3 conditional bonus as having a flaw. The magus with a +3 bonus in the aura will have a -3 penalty outside, and more so for someone with blatant gift. It isn't the numbers I am disagreeing with, just the description of something that does not penalize you compared to an average non-magical person or penalize your magic as a flaw.

As to the magic realm we can certainly describe this as a magical effect, but we are not required to do so, and thus discussing limits of magic doesn't relate.

That would remove Infamous Master as a Flaw, right? You're still a member of the Order and thus given far more rights than a typical person. But you have a worse reputation within the Order than the typical magus. So this does not penalize you compared to an average non-magical person, nor does it penalize your magic. Yet ArM5 considers Infamous Master a Flaw.

If you prefer, let me rephrase it. You're giving a huge bonus to the magus with the Flaw, a large bonus to all typical magi, and no bonus at all to the magus with the Virtue. Considering magi spend a large portion of their time at the covenant and that this includes teaching apprentices, this is a good portion of the Virtue Gentle Gift some players have paid to get for their magi. If you want to phrase without "Flaw," you're essentially giving a free Major Virtue's worth of bonus to typical magi, and even more than that in return for taking a Major Flaw of Blatant Gift in addition to the points you actually get for taking the Flaw. But if you take Gentle Gift you just get left out. Honestly, how is that fair at all? If absolutely everyone had the same Gentle/normal/Blatant Gift, then it would be fair. But we don't.

Regardless, if you're not disagreeing with the numbers, then are we really agreeing that this is totally unfair? I don't care about the semantics. I'm only referring to the numbers and was trying to give a scale to them and an understanding what what is done relative to a vanilla magus with no Virtues/Flaws.

Ignoring Blair McKenzie for a moment because I'm unsure of a rewrite, here is what we have shaping up:

2 Gentle Gifts
1 Innoffensive to Animals Gift
4 normal Gifts
1 Blatant Gift

So two players felt it was worth 3 points to pay to get rid of the taint. They would miss out on a solid bonus in the aura. One player felt it was worth 1 point to get rid of the taint vis-a-vis animals to deal with animals especially well. That player would lose out on a bonus to animals in the aura, doing worse with animals there than without spending the point. And the one with the Blatant Gift would get a massive bonus within the aura, while the other four get a big benefit there. Almost half the players decided to spend points to get what they will essentially lose out on half the time. One player got points to spend elsewhere but won't have to deal with the Flaw half the time, getting it as a huge bonus instead. If that player doesn't want to have the penalty of Blatant Gift, shouldn't that player follow the route those others took instead of choosing Blatant Gift?

Ha! Please don't proceed with this reversal of the gentle gift and blatant gift. It's a rort and totally nonsensical.
If you want the perks of gentle gift, then buy them. Likewise the gift and blatant gift; you chose them so play the rules as written.
You should not be altering the way other characters virtues and flaws interact.
No bloody way.
If this malarkey is included I have to rewrite my character. So no, this is a terrible idea.

Edit: And its Silveroaks character with the Blatant Gift, who wants to reverse the effects. C'mon Silveroak how about you just don't pick blatant gift?

I picked the blatant gift because it fit the character's background, and like I said I tossed this out there to see what people thought.
It would appear that that opinion has been voiced, so unless someone else speaks up for it consider the idea withdrawn.

What sources of income did the original covenant have? We ought to make sure that we have that covered. As a Winter covenant, it might well have an increased or additional source of income.

Also, will there be a vis grant to the magi of the covenant? If so, we need to take the Vis Grant Boon.