Diedne Magic and Magical Focus discussion

Hello everyone
I would like some comments on the following.

I have been medling with a character concept revolving around a Diedne Magus, casting powerfull spontanenous spells on herself, but before finishing the concept i ran into a game-mechanics issue (that might come up often, when i come to play her). Her spellcastning is obviously based on the Diedne Magic Major Hermetic Virtue, a generalist approach to arts, and possibly a high stamina. In order to add some flavour to the concept, her gift is hampered through the Short-ranged magic flaw, forcing her to put even more emphasis on self-altering spells (other options include Weak Magic and Loose Magic). This leads to virtues such as Special Circumstances (physical contact with the target), Puissant Muto and possibly Affinity with Muto, as well as a Minor Magical Focus within the field of Self-Transformation. This is where the question arises: How does the focus work in combination with the Diedne Magic virtue, when spending fatigue?

The relevant text in the Diedne Magic virtue discription reads:
"When you expend fatigue on casting a spontaneous spell, the lowest applicable Art is doubled before the whole total is divided by two. You still roll a stress die, and may botch."

The relevant text in the Minor Magical Focus virtue discription reads:
"When you cast a spell or generate a lab total within your focus, add the lowest applicable Art score twice, as for a Major Magical Focus."

  1. Does this mean that you cannot have both virtues as the Diedne Magic virtue counts as a Magical Focus?
    This would result in Diedne Lineage Magi being unable to have magical foci (probably not the way to go).

  2. Are the two bonuses incompatible, so that you can only benefit from one of the two?
    This would effectively make the Diedne Magic virtue less powerfull, as the 'expend fatigue' option would be ineffective within the range of your magical focus (in which case the Diedne Magic virtue would loose some of its edge).

  3. Do the two bonuses apply to the same magic total, if for example a spontaneous spell is cast within the scope of the focus and the Magus opts to spend fatigue?
    This has a range of different interpretations, as discribed below. The (listed a,b,c) possible interpretations are clarified by an example, where the caster's relevant art scores are 6 and 9.

    a) Diedne virtue goes first --> then the Magical Focus (as well as the other way around: Focus, then Diedne)
    (6x2)+9 --> 12+(9+9)
    = 30

    b) The two virtues add their bonuses simultaneously, as per the Magical Focus wording (add lowest again)
    = 27

    c) The two virtues add their bonuses simultaneously, as per the Diedne Magic wording (doubling lowest)
    = 33

  1. Diedne is not a magical focus
  2. bonus are explicitly compatible. See the explanation making it clear in the virtue Chtonic magic in RoP tI
  3. if its in the focus and its a fatiguing spontaneous, both applies.
    a) no
    b) yes because: you double your lowest art (6) for diedne magic and you double it also, in the same time, for your focus (6); which means Tech 6 +focus 6 + diedne 6 +form 9 = 27
    c) no

Thanks for the fast answer - b) is the option i 'felt' best about too.
I do not have the Chtonic magic book, but thanks for the specific reference anyway.
I think we both had some inconsistencies in the formulas along the way (doubling vs. adding again) - but in the result we agree :slight_smile:
To put it simply, one just 'triples the lowest score'.
Great to have another oponion on the matter - i will apply this ruling henceforth.