Enchanted Fishing Net


One of my players came up with the idea of enchanting a fishing net so that fish would willingly throw themselves in. I'm not sure if its build is sound. Could you please give me your opinion:

Basically, it's a net attached to a gong. The gong is enchanted to gong when put under water.
Re An: base 2: Plant a single suggestion in the mind of an animal (throw yourself in the net)
+2 voice (the gong sounding under water)
+1 Concentration
+1 Group
+1 Size (up to 100 fishes)
+5 lvl: items maintains concentration
+1 lvl: 2 times per day
+1 lvl: only affect adult fishes (miscellaneous adjustement)
+3 lvl: environnemental trigger: the gong sounds when put underwater
For a final level Re An 25

Does it do the trick? Do you agree with me that only the fish at "voice" length of the gong at the moment it is put underwater are affected? New fishes entering the area after the gong emitted its noise are not affected?

Thanks for your insight?

At a glance it looks a lot like what I would suggest

This bit is a bit iffy though. Shouldn't this be a madifier on the core enchantment, meaning it would operate in magnitudes?
I was considering calling it 'Effect Use' (ArM5, p. 99), but that restricts users, not targets.

A few thoughts:

  • Group is +2, not 1
  • I don't think you need the extra modifier for affecting only adults. That is a reasonable restriction on the basic spell effect. Much like targeting females vs all humans.
  • suggest the device is triggered manually as there may not be fish in range, and somebody still needs to put the net in the water. Saves an env trigger modifier.

Oh, yes, Group is +2. I can't believe i let this one pass through!
Thanks for your advices.

Would you say it affect only the fish presents at the moment of the gong beat? Or also the fish that enter the area even after the gong beat? I think it's the former, but i'm not so sure here.

Only effecting on the "gong" sounds to me like a momentary effect.

A concentration duration indicates an ongoing effect that lasts for a day (or night) duration and needs to be reactivated either manually or by environmental trigger.

A Moment is likely not enough time to attract fish from further away, but any longer duration should be sufficient.

Whether fish initially outside the range but later inside the range are effected is up to you and your ST; I am not aware of any official ruling on that idea. The initial only interpretation is a more conservative argument, however the effect is ongoing so by RAW you could argue that since fish only need to be within range (not actually hear the "voice") that any fish later entering the range are also effected.

Well, Hermetic magic needs to sense the target not just have it be within range. So a Range: Voice effect can affect a flock of fish that the fisherman is seeing - but not call the fish from around the net. To do that, you need the Target: Sound (+3 I believe) from the Sensory Magic Mystery of House Bjornaer (detailed in Houses of Hermes: Mystery Cults).

that was my issue as well.

On the other hand group for target animal spell is a matter of mass. You don't need a +1 size modifier.

If you made some way to define chunks of water as a room you could do room as the target for a lower level and not need to see the fish, only the "room". Room is defined in a sort of squishy way. from page 13

Perhaps 3 or 4 large nets cordoning off a volume of water?

Another choice might be target circle, make a large floating ring of ropes with floats then activate it to catch all of the fish within.

This would be the case if the fisherman was the one casting the spell.

The consensus seems to be that items need to make sound to be able to use the voice range, hence the gong is not using range sound, but rather range voice. Thus the range is based upon the distance that the caster's voice (item's gong) carries, not on whether the target can hear it.

I'm sure this could be made quite effectively using range sound, but the OP's route seems quite valid.

No is disputing that you can use the sound of the gong for range Voice in an item. The issue is that the law of arcane connections -page 80- prevents an item from targeting something that isn't sensed without an AC (unless it is an intellego spell, they're wishy washy). So using the sound of the gong is fine but if neither the item not the user can sense the fish, then the item can't target them. (According to rules as written anyway, it might be wise to bend the rules here so everyone has more fun).

That's why we're talking about other Targets, note that we're talking about Targets we haven't been discussing Ranges at all. But now that it has come up, the suggestions of Circle, Sound, and Room all would work with range touch to save a magnetude.

And those Targets can't be used in item creation as per the description of the virtue.

Also, look at the Ever Tempting Trap on page 76 of Magi of Hermes for another take on fishing.

Just two random thougts:


The net itself takes care of the size of fish it catches. Just put bigger holes in it. No magics needed.

Get rid of the Gong. This is artificially forcing "Voice" range onto an effect where it just doesn't make any sense IMNSHO. You're forcefully superseeding game-reality with game-mechanics.

A gong just doesn't belong here. It has no connection whatsoever to fishing. Sound a gong if you go real-life fishing and you will not catch a single fish that day.

Add some artificial magical bait instead. A spoon-bait maybe (if you want to catch predatory fish), it makes noise underwater. Way better fluff, same mechanics.

You are fishing. You need bait, not musical instruments...