Covenant in a very high Aura

I'm fiddling around with the idea of setting a covenant in a strength 10 regio. Does anyone have any advice on this? If I'm reading the covenant rules right, all inhabited areas must be within the highest aura rating unless the major boon Aura is used. The Major hooks road and monster both come to mind.

How believable is such a site for a Spring covenant? Older edition had extreme aura as a option for a Spring covenant (nobody wanted to take the site). I'm not sure this logic would still hold for 5th edition. The effects of warping (two lesser flaws, one lesser virtue) don't seem that great. Also if the covenfolk simply have a virtue aligned with magic they gain no warping. That really brings us back to the idea of a covenant as a place for outcasts with lesser magical abilities. Will the extra +5 to aura badly upset game balance?

Also I'm trying to decide between setting somewhere in the Hebrides, London, Malta or somewhere in Ireland. Does anyone have any suggestions. If I remember correctly Stonehenge is suppose to be an ultra low magic setting and the cannon for Rome is back out of 3rd edition with all its demons.

Of course, your chairs, tables, doors, etc. will all warp quickly. Fun!


Ouch. An Aura of 10 is almost a direct portal to the Magic Realm so the Road Hook is a bit understated. It's also going to be the only place where Might 50 monsters can live without dying off. Your players are going to have one helluva vermin problem, I would say insurmountable in my Mythic Europe but it's your game. The more interesting thing is how do you describe it... a magic aura is strange and wonderful so a level 10 is going to be some amazing place! From the RoP: M book, I would recommend reading about Tethers to build the Aura up. They have some neat examples in there as well as ideas about Warping.

I could be wrong but I believe the rule on no warping from Magic auras is only for Magi since they are Gifted with being part of the Magic Realm. I could be wrong though.

Maybe a large Aegis to make sure things have to knock and ask nicely before they can come through? I was thinking that exploration of the magic realm would play a fairly central role in the saga. Hadn't thought about warping on inanimate objects. Seems like that would result in a bunch of elementals and spirits of objects. Sounds like it'd end up with a bunch of labs with major or minor horde and a warping score. What am I not seeing here that moves this for story possibilities into untenable?

Might 50 doesn't strike me as unreasonable for a "monster." I'm have tempted to make it some kind of legendary magic user/creature and give them the busybody flaw. Nimue would like to talk to you about your love life. . .

No need of the Gift. Any Magic-Realm-aligned Supernatural Ability (or presumably Art) will do.


Make all your grogs have a minor suoernatural ability, like second sight. Otherwsie you will end up with a covenant full of warped people and misfits really fast. Hsving a covenant full of lunatics (literally?) might be fun, though. It is creating a winter covenant from the start :mrgreen:

Xavi's suggestion of adding a bit of winter to the covenant seems good to me: have the site be 'inherited' or gifted to the new magi from an old paren's paren's paren who has finally been declared dead or unlikely to return from twilight.

The exceedingly old/eccentric retainers will have on their own for quite a while and mutter about 'the old master wouldn't like that' whenever the pcs make any changes. And they each have some sort of quite potent special virtue plus at least 2 flaws, to make them as much a liability as a help to the pcs.
Have old (powerful) monsters and other friends pop by for a chat every now-and-then.
Animated furniture, walls, etc: think Harry Potter's school with nastier possibilities and unpleasant vermin that are actually dangerous. You could even have a few real demons who were bound by the old magus so they have to help run the place but are beyond the current capabilities of the pcs to get rid of or control if they got loose...

That would be fun! (but a lot of work to set up.) Hmmm, I think I'll bear this idea in mind for next-but-one game...

Well here's a set of hooks and boons I was playing around with for a covenant in the Hebrides (or somewhere in Ireland).

Road (Major)
Road (Minor)
Monster (Major)
Hedge Tradition
Ruined Covenant (maybe Mundane Politics would be better, things are very unsettled in the Hebrides in this time period).

Aura *7
Powerful Ally (Monster)
Hidden Resources * 2
Secondary Income
Inhuman Covenfolk
Tower Keep

Is there any cannon on the Kingdom of Man and the Isles? I like the idea of an inherited site, not sure if ruined covenant is the best hook to model it though.

I don't think Mundane Politics is appropriate for a covenant in a regio: after all, you can always ignore the mundane world and they can't get to you, so in theory you can ignore the hook if you wish. Better stick with Ruined Covenant.

Now, a few problems: the Major Road Hook is fine, a level 10 regio is probably mystically connected to a lot of other regiones and maybe the Magic Realm, but a minor Road Hook in a regio ? It's not like mundanes can enter it at will, unless you specifically take the Regio With Unexpected Entries hook.

Also, the Castle Hook does not apply to fortification built in regiones (p.12, fourth paragraph of the sidebar), since it represents the fact that mortal authorities don't like fortified holdings within their territory that are not under their control: in a regio.

And finally, I hope you are not counting the same monster as both a hook and the Powerful Ally boon, that would not make sense unless the poor monster is schizophrenic.

I'm not sure this has to be hostile, though I can see the point that this might equate to getting the Powerful Ally boon with no offset.

Road was included as the Hebrides are actually a major part of the shipping route between Britain, Ireland and the Nordic countries. (If I'm remember correctly, The Kingdom of Mann and the Isles is a tributary of Norway at this time, though the Kingdom is in the process of breaking apart). (Well that and I had thought to set the Covenant outside of Alexandria, but the history of the 5th crusade indicates that could be fatal to new magi). Is the location I'm somewhat considering for a setting.

Hum drop road and regio and take Regio with unexpected entrances, drop ally and drop castle. That leaves the option for one more hook plus one minor boon not yet taken. Suggestions? Part of me says take healthy feature * 1. On the other hand after pegging aura to the top of the chart I am very hesitant to add any more site related statistical boons. (Well unless the monster if trying to keep the magi alive so that they will botch, eventually increasing the aura level and freeing her).

What about letting your troupe decide some of this?

Open club recruiting next semester. I'm a graduate student and want to get as much of the prep work done over the break as I can. I'll let the players allocate build points but want to have the location, story idea and the like roughed out well in advance.

Out of curiosity, how familiar are they with the setting and with the rules?

Low to moderate. I'd say newbie to a book or two level. I might get a person with deep system knowledge, or I might not.

I would probably spend the bulk of build points myself mgiving them 50'at most to bring. Spending build points can be daunting to newbies. Are you pregenerating characters? Going to have a notebook with MetaCreator on it?

I was going to have 4-6 magi and 4-6 companion pregens (and some grogs) ready to go. I'll post them for review here a bit later (I only have two magi roughed out at this point). Does metacreator have an ipad app by any chance?

I think MC is strictly Windows, although I used to run it using the emulation (wine I think) and it worked ok.

No, but if you have a computer RDP accessible, and your iPad has WiFi you could operate it. I actually have thought about this, but I haven't tried it. In any event, with a bunch of possibly new players, I'd focus on a less extreme environment. In fact, I wouldn't even focus on the covenant, at first.

There is a setting presented on an e-zine for ars magica, it is not cannon but is well done.

Here the link

The setting Treasures of the Sea is in the issues 14 and 15.

We just finished a successful saga (70 years game time) using the supplement in Hermes Portal 14 and 15. You can download them for free now. Very good tribunal book covering those areas. 4th edition, but you will need minimal changes only to adapt to 5th. Lion of the North and Stonehege also recommended. :slight_smile:

Or first target was to get rid of the partitio monaviae. Loads of fun here. Spoecially since we had a SECOND covenant in the island trying to do the same at the same time, biut in favour of anouthe rtribunal (we were voting for Hibernia, them for loch leglean). It all ended up with both of us allying in front of the rest of the tribunals to try and get a tribunal of our own, so that the 3 side tribiunals stopped bitching us. And obviously we had to contend with powerful fae and dragon in the meantime, as well as several wizard wars and mundane invasions of our playground. It is an interesting period in the isle of Mann.