Enchanting Music difficulty level calculation

Hi there!

With our upcoming hedgie saga, I have myself and the other troupe members constantly looking at supernatural abilities. In our war against davnalleus saga we have already seen how powerful some of those can be (Hex + Chtonic Magic and Mythic herbalism being our favourites right now) against non hermetics (people that do not have hermetic Magic; plenty of Parma guys around).

One of the questions that has been risen is how to work around Enchanting Music. As the rules say:

ENCHANTING MUSIC (Com + Ench. Mus + D10)
9+ calm the upset
12+ win someone’s love
15+ incite a riot
24+ win back a soul from the Prince of Darkness

It sounds like it is a ReMe or CrMe effect in all cases. The scale of power seems less detailed than we would like it to be, so here we come asking for advice. :slight_smile:

Converting the effects to hermetic equivalents we find this:

calm the upset (difficulty 9)
This one is fairly standard. there is even a spell that does the same. PeMe base 5 equivalent; +2 room; PeMe15 effect.

win someone’s love (Difficulty 12)
this one is tricky, since it basically breaks hermetic limits. Unless we consider that the love is not True, but only lust or a temporary infantuation, with no lasting effect. let's assume the later (debatable) stance. I accept being challenged on this one :wink: Let's say CrMe base 4 (put an emotion in someone's mind), +2 voice range, +3 moon. CrMe25. Sounds right?

incite a riot (difficulty 15)
Again, a CrMe base 4 effect; create emotion; +2 voice +2 group, +2 size to affect 1000 people: CrMe30

win back a soul from the Prince of Darkness (Difficulty 24)
ReMe(Vi) effect. What effect level would you use?

I consider the first one (calm someone) at difficulty 9 to be too high, and would reduce it to 6+ since it is a staple thing to do for enchanting musicians and singers. That would imply something very handy: Difficulty is 3+ magnitude of effect you want to achieve. the formula works for difficulty of the first 3 described effects if calming people is difficulty 6. It works as a way to calculate the effects you want to achieve with your music.

Would that work for you?


Well my first bit of advice is turn to the rules for designing supernatural abilities in the Ex Miscellanea section of Houses of Hermes: Societates (pg 103).

I think we can agree that the RDT parameter for Enchanting Music are constant and that the variable in this case is the magnitude of the effect itself (not unlike the Entrancement example given). I'd use: Voice range and Group target. Duration is a bit trickier, but I think Momentary is probably the best option at least for most applications.

Likewise, while some of the sample effects you've described are perfectly applicable to Rego or Perdo Mentem, I'd focus on Creo Mentem as the Form/Technique combination used with particular attention to the treatment of the mind in A&A.

EDIT: Unfortunately, following this advice tends to result in most Enchanting Music effects having using base 3, 4, or 5 effects with no clear hierarchy for the effects wielded by Enchanting Musicians - I'll have to give this more thought....

My thoughts were along the lines of: How can I get sufficient penetration to pierce the MR on the Prince of Darkness?

Yeah, that occurred to us all. But you need to trust in your exploding die :mrgreen: And then bargain with God. That last bit might be somewhat more complicated.

I thought win back a soul was magically converting someone from evil to good. Which raises many interesting philosophical questions if you can just compel someone into being good. OTOH, if enchanting music is powerful enough to control the devil himself and make him give up souls... I don't think Hermetic Magic can pull that one off.

I think it is there because of Orpheus. The prince of darkness being Hades, not Satan in this context. It is clear that he should have had enchanting music. And an exploding die.

For what's worth, Enchanting Music is a legacy Virtue that's been around with those same guidelines since at least 3rd edition. So it does not benefit from 5th Edition's nice "standardization".

As for the "win back a soul" part, on the one hand I believe it really means to say "if you can pull a 24+, you can get the target do pretty much anything"; on the other hand it wasn't always 100% clear in previous editions if it required penetration (possibly being instead simply music so beatiful that it moved the target to emotion).