Covenant development discussions

Discussions about the development of the covenant. Everyone can post here.

More details on the proposed location of the covenant.

About 30 km northeast of Bamberg, on the south shore of the Main river, is the small town of Staffelstein. In the heights above the town is the Banz Abbey, just north of the river. In Staffelstein, as in several place along the upper Main, hot springs bubble up to the surface.

Just north of the town is a hill named Staffelberg, which was the site of an Oppidum (a fortified town) during the time of the Celts. There are a few shallow caves on the sides of Staffelberg, one of which is the entrance to a magical regio under the hill.

The regio was discovered almost 2 centuries ago and used to establish a small Hermetic covenant. The magi who lived there expanded the caves under the hill to install their labs and living quarters, but were forced to abandon it after when the local vis sources began to dry out, but also because the entrance to the regio appeared to become unstable.

A few years ago, Tandaline of Bonisagus found out about the site and investigated it. She found that at least one of the former vis sources had regenerated, though it was a bit inconvenient to harvest as it is a bit irregular. Still, she thought the location could be suitable to establish a new covenant, and passed along the information.

Main river flows eastwards right ?

So there's only one know source and the other are to discover.

The entrance is unstable as it changes places and you have to find It or it's not always open or you have to do some sort of special operation for it to open ?

Flows down from the east to the west. It eventually flows into the Rhine at Mainz.

Unknown, the records were unspecifc and Tandaline was unable to find signs of that instability.

Note that the instability of the regio is mostly a way to explain why the covenant was abandoned. I have no intention of causing the troupe to suffer from it.

Anyone has ideas about what should be around for the covenant's use? I don't intend to use the detailed Build Point from Covenants , but the covenant needs at least a concept for its source of income, how much of a library, what you have in the way of vis sources, etc.

Source of income :

  • There's quite a lot if Brewery around, maybe we could make something related ? Malt, Hop, Yeast, purified water ? Later maybe we brew our own beer and sell It there's quite a lot of operation that could benefit from magic supervision.
  • Maybe there's something to do with the hot springs ? Hot baths with medical benefit ensured by healing magic (circle with recovery bonus ?)

Source of of vis :

  • Something related to the celtic opidium, maybe corporem linked to an hidden celtic divinity site of ancient human sacrifice.
  • Something related to the hot spring, could be ignem because it's hot, could be muto because cater becomes gazeous, could be aquam...
  • there could me some terram related to some geological formations inside the caves, maybe there's perfect crystals of calcite forming deep inside geodes waiting to be harvested ?
  • There could be some some animalem in olms hidden somewhere in an underground river...

My mage could make decent glass if there is sand within many miles or iron/steel if there are any peat bogs within many miles. I say "many miles" because travel won't be so hard.

I do like the idea of proving ourselves rather than having pre-existing income. We could start with some silver that would get us started.

I happen to find magical caves inspiring for vis: stalactites/mites CrTe, pitch darkness PeIg, bottomless pit PeTe, bat guano An, mushrooms He, the magic Vi, clear pools InAq, etc. But that's just within.

My guess is that Durenmar will send a library with us. It will probably be not the best ( quite likely kind of bad books or vanity projects). I would see them asking that one of our number come and be a scribe for a season every year/2 years/longer period if they are supporting us.

From your description, the Covenant is in the caves but not in the regio which is in a branch of the cave. Is that correct?

The abby is interesting in that they only accept nobles as monks.

Our upkeep will be higher because we will be underground. Perhaps bee hives for all the candles?

One of my favorites is to have a Celt brewery site in the Regio that is still working. Keep adding wort and get the beer. Of course the beer could have magical properties :slight_smile:

Each of your magi will have been assigned to some copying duties at the end of apprenticeship. You won't have been able to select the book being copied, but you can expect it to be aligned with your specialties.

Be aware that the skill of the copying scribe has an impact in the Quality of copied books (see the House Rules), so if you don't have a score in Profession: Scribe it will show on the Quality of your copy.

Additional books will also be provided by House Bonisagus to complete the library.

The caves with the labs, library and living quarters of the magi will be in the regio. If the covenant has additional buildings then those will be outside of the regio.

Essentially, only very shallow cave are outside of the regio.

That could be an interesting source of income. Do not worry about the upkeep. As I said, I will not be doing the detailed build points and finances from Covenants.

Good to be aware of, and I like how we'll have copied them ourselves. I'd already planned for Profession: Scribe 1 (Hermetic Works), which gives (1+1)/2, rounded down = 1. I'm not sure it's worth putting 25 more experience into Profession: Scribe to get it to the minimum to get one point higher.

Probably not, but you can improve your skill later.

Note that with the house rule on Hermetic books, one can improve the Quality of the book at a later time by recrafting it when the magus has a higher Profession: Scribe. Of course, if you infused the original with vis, that cannot be transferred so you need more vis as well.

But the copies you make won't have infused vis. So the initial Quality of those books will be lower, but you will be able to improve it by spending a season to infuse a specific book with vis. So it is better to have the magus with the highest Profession: Scribe score do the copying, or to work with a professional scribe to make that copy, instead of infusing the inferior copy with vis. But that takes time.

So do you study with an inferior copy, or wait until your copy is better? Choices, choices! :wink:

I'm not sure I will allow that specialty. Let me think about it.

I just added an entry in House Rules for Profession: Scribe specialties and how they will affect a book's stats. Let me know if you think it unfair or otherwise bad.

I noticed. Those seem fine to me.

Just added one for book durability and wear.

I just noticed that, too. Uh-oh. I was thinking of someone somewhat clumsy. Hmm... How angry is everyone going to get?

How talented are you are copying :wink:

Well, negative stats should have a downside, even for lab rats. :innocent:

Seriously, I wasn't targeting any specific magus. It just seemed to make sense that books would be damaged faster when used by clumsy readers. That, combined with Hermetic books being infused with vis, make libraries both precious and costly to maintain in top condition

Of course. The others will just make sure I get the books last. :slight_smile:

Sure. Makes sense to me.

Maybe add Concentration to the roll? Since it's a specialization option that remains mostly unused.

Not a bad idea. If I add Concentration to the roll, though, I will raise the Ease Factor to 12.

EDIT: Waiting for other comments before making the change. The Ease Factor may be readjusted during the saga if we see wear coming into play too fast or too slow. Exceptional and story events may also cause wear to accrue, as might the simple passage of time.