Enhance Supernatural Abilities?

So, be relatively useless for 10 or 20 years? It's a bit of a stretch to my thinking that you will actually be able to pick up all that stuff in a short time frame. How often are these Verditius making stuff? A good rule of thumb is that Verditius should be in their labs making stuff at least two seasons a year in their early years. And later, when they've achieved "enough" learning in their desired Arts and abilities probably move that up to 3. Adding those virtues also adds commitments of time to the character, slowing down his advancement or his time in the lab, or smaller amounts of each.

You make it sound nearly effortless, but it becomes a less believable character if he's never made something and only grinds on his Arts, Abilities and virtues. I've seen characters like this proposed before. Their machinations are obvious.

Oh, lots of time in the lab. We just found that the best use of the Verditius in the Covenant early was opening items for Enchantment. Perhaps we did it wrong, but we cut costs by making lots of magic items to help out. Alas, in canon, making an item "magic" doesn't make it any tougher, so many of our tools required 15 spaces. Well out of the range of everyone else(Magic Theory 8 coming out of Gauntlet? Even a 6 isn't going to happen!). And everyone else was very powerful in combat, but not at all utility, and so couldn't make useful "simple" items. I was a very popular guy around the labs......

And I have only gotten to play Ars a couple of times. Every time we have played, the first 5 to 10 years were spent by everyone reading books, getting taught, and building up labs. Everyone was "grinding on his Arts, Abilities and virtues.", more then me, because I had to "open" four "Golden Suns" (Magic Light and Heat for your lab! I made one for me, and everyone else had to have one.) and they only had to spend a season "installing" it. And having a high Int and Magic Theory (+10 to your lab total is a real help coming out of Gauntlet!), I spent several seasons helping in the lab. But I got quite a few favors, which made it much easier to get the Mysteries and Virtues I wanted, later, when I was ready. It seemed a natural progression to me, but your mileage may vary, of course.

I've never been so lucky to put more than a couple of seasons per year into grinding XP, even in situations where the HR allows adventure experience in seasons of lab work. Covenant service, story flaws all conspire to get in the way. Getting access to books when the covenant's library is also insufficient to improve a specific Art or ability is something that takes quite a bit of time.

Your environment seems highly cooperative designed for maximum advancement. To paraphrase you, YSMV, but I tend to play my magi a bit more selfish. And a Verditius assisting in the lab? Sounds decidedly unlike a Verditius. :smiley:

Well, we play Troupe style around here. I guess things are a little kinder when the excitement the ST throws will be thrown back at him soon :wink:...... As to "Your environment seems highly cooperative designed for maximum advancement.", we thought that was the point of setting up a new Covenant. You and some other magi get a sack of Vis, a map if you're lucky, and get tossed into a vast and dangerous world. Sink or Swim, right? We all worked together because we didn't want to starve (And it's hard to be selfish when you have nothing, yes?). Pretty sure if we had made it to 40 years out of Gauntlet it would be a different story. Alas, never gotten to play that long.....

(Nonsense! Verditius are quite willing to work with others, until Hubris becomes an issue. Why did you think it was there? The Heavens would shake if 6 Masters got together to work on a project! You might be able to do a 90th level effect in a season!)

Actually, enchanted items are more durable than their mundane counterparts, according to City & Guild, page 77, which gives items a bonus to stress checks (to avoid damage or breakage) equal to the total number of magnitudes of effects enchanted into the item.

Wait, what? Spring covenants have tonnes of work to do to establish themselves. There's very little time to grind on XP in the library. There's work to be done. Summer covenants, well, you want to grind on the library, you've got to put in your work for it. Autumn, same. Winter, where's the library?

Even a covenant of magi working together, in a sink or swim atmosphere would still have issues of selfishness. Someone, somewhere is goldbricking it. And if they aren't, then there's work to be done. A brand new spring covenant with spring magi would probably only have 1 season per year of advancement in the desired area. Advancement in other areas might be allowed, if it is demonstrated to be for the benefit of the covenant.

Please. That's a lab total of 180. That's easy. YR7 started a threadon that way back in 2005.

Those 10 in 15 arts are probably 12-15 years of solid book reading (SQ12), depending on your starting arts. Getting 5 in every Art isn't too bad, and most Verditus magi at that point can probably output level 15 enchants in anything in one season. But at that point you're no more impressive an enchanter than any other magus, really. You can always find a sale, but its always going to be a small one, and there's going to be competition from other magi who probably charge less than Verditus rates.

Arts are tremendously important for the hands-down best mystery the Verditus has, Verditus Elder Runes. Doubling an art has little meaning if the art is low - if the Art in question is a 10, you actually very little because the enchantment level went up by +5 through the use of a rune. It's also a big deal for Bind Magical Creature, which doesn't use a lot of the usual stuff, just a ReVi lab total (binding magical creature powers to yourself might be the single neatest thing Verditus magi can do), and Item Attunement limits the vis in an object rely heavily on arts (though Philosophae is included).

And as an additional note, I forgot to add that a Verditus also has to accumulate Verditus Cult Lore so he can initiate others in the future and progress through the Mysteries. One more XP sink atop the rest, I'm afraid. Book Learner is probably of tremendous use to a Verditus, rather than taking a pile of Affinities (Cult Lore, Magic Theory, Philosophae and Arts can all be learned in books). Affinity with Craft is probably still valuable (gaining exposure XP in Craft as you make stuff).

Well, there's the tripping point. I don't see sales to be a priority to a young Verditius. I could be wrong, but I see them as helping to set up the Covenant they will be spending their lives in, and then setting up their labs, which I think would take a couple of years, because what Verditius wouldn't personalize his lab? +5 general quality isn't very hard. None of this requires much in the way of Arts. Does require Magic Theory, Craft, and Philo. Then you can decide what you are going to be famous for...... (As to selling things, just opening items should get you plenty of Vis.......)

Given how social the cult is, I would go with good student over book learning. The Cult lore books are very tightly controlled ("Thanks" to the Traitor), so personal instruction is probably going to be a lot easier to get, and Craft and Philo do not require Magi teachers, so they should be easy to get access to, and, lastly, those extra points just might get you an extra virtue or two, which book learning will not do. But, there's no reason you can't do both. In my ideal case, you still have 4 virtues points. Good Student, Book Learner, Strong Parens (Which I think should almost be assumed with Verditius, again, because they are so social, and because it gives a counter to those STs who want to keep the House Mysteries, mysteries.......) and something like inventive genius or dwarf blooded.

How does a Verditius make a name for himself to sell later, if he doesn't sell earlier?

A GQ bonus isn't hard to acquire, it just takes time. Time which is already at a premium...

I don't think there's any easier way in canon to get a reputation then to improve your lab. Really, look it up! It's in Covenants, in the lab rules. One of stats for your lab is Aesthetics, and every point of that stat is 5 exp to your lab's Reputation (which, of course, is your reputation, yes? It's YOUR lab.....). They add up pretty quick, and it's in black and white, as opposed to how you normally earn a Reputation (Which is kind of fuzzy in canon. Lots of ST calls, etc.). Given how useful the Verditius mystery is, I think they are always in demand, once Magi and people know you are there. Don't think customers will be a problem :slight_smile:.

Ah, time. Yes, it's an issue, but that's true for most magi, isn't it? And I find it's nice to have choices other then "I Must Raise My Arts!". Maybe that's just me....

As far as the lab bonuses are concerned, I've come to the opinion that the ones that require extra seasons of work (as opposed to just cash or doing it in the initial set-up) are something of a trap option - at least in the early years, when progression of arts and abilities is easy/fast. If you're older and have something in mind that's almost in reach, seasons buffing your lab become attractive.

Agreed, that could be better, but only for Verditus Cult Lore. Book Learner is deadly efficient for almost everything but Craft, though.

If the Verditus spend time teaching each other, then that's one more demand on their precious time. Cult lore isn't the same as Mystery integration, and house 'secrets' are already legalized in the Order of Hermes (HoH:True Lineages IIRC). Worst case, you have to read the cult lore books in a secure location, which you'd have to do if you were receiving Teaching; only reading doesn't eat up some other person's precious time.

Learning from a teacher, though, is indeed the most efficient path, provided you can find one past a certain point. Adept Student is underrated, and I wish it were better represented in apprenticeship (it should be worth a +50xp boost IMO). But Book Learner is trivially easy to leverage; there are almost always books to be used.

Ah, the Lab (in my view) is the reason the other stuff happens. It is your home, where you work, where you live your life. The fact I get game bonuses is just gravy. I'm going to do that stuff anyway. I think that's the normal position for the House. You could play a Verditius with a "stock" lab, but expect a reputation as a weirdo.

Again, except for Hermetic Virtues, no books. (mind, in canon, there should be, given the Integration rules, but, alas, they aren't given a point value in the book buying system. Sigh.). That, to my mind, is the breakpoint. Mind, we seemed to play a "friendlier" game of Ars then most here. Certmen didn't happen, Wizard Wars never came up. People were pretty free with their time. Maybe our stories just ended early?

Yes, in canon, "House Secrets" are allowed. But also in canon, the House is very touchy about it, because one went public, "thanks" to the Traitor (Houses of Hermes, Mystery cults, P.128-129. You can get cast out of the House for learning Automata! (As opposed to "learning" Automata via House ordeal). So I think this is a General/Particular thing.

Yeah, book learning is swell. Hard to say no to unless you have a very tight concept.

That's the best reason. A lot of the stuff can be gained in the initial set-up, especially if you have any say in the architecture. But many of the options are worth more as set dressing than they are as actual lab total boosts.

Perhaps. But I am uncomfortable with saying something is "set dressing" when there are formal rules for it. Also, I end up in way better position for when I enchant most of that stuff :slight_smile:! (Yes, I could just enchant an anvil, call it a lab magic item, and just drop it in my lab, no seasons spent "incorporating". Those are the rules. I would also expect the ST to mug me sometime down the road, too :wink:. There are the rules, and there are the "RULES"........)

Given that labs get destroyed too, I have the same concerns about over-customizing the lab. :cry:

That is why the Lab structure got enchanted :wink:....... (And, of course, If you are setting up a Lab from scratch, there are a lot of "free" virtues you can get that add to safety. Spacious and Well Insulated get you a +3, and I can't think of anything with a risk modifier with higher. Mind, I didn't look too hard, not my style.)

That's one interpretation of RAW. Another is that you must still spend a season aligning the mystical energies with the structural properties of the lab to realize any benefit to Hermetic Magic. I don't recall (but there might be statements indicating the possibility) that you can add certain minor structure flaws for free as part of construction. And even so, they still take up virtue points that someone might want to use for something else.

"Free" lab virtues, according to Covanents, P.113, "Take up a negligible contribution to space", and "Free virtues have no space and (usually) no seasonal construction requirement. They may be gained in a day or two if the relevant materials are procured, or if the relevant circumstances are satisfied.". The rules are clear, they take up no "virtue space" (Aka, their space is 0, as opposed to Major and Minor virtues, which have a space of 1), and take, at best, a day to "attune the mystical energies". I said free for a reason. They are FREE! :slight_smile:

I know you don't like to look at the rulez, by your own admission, but Spacious and Well Insulated are Minor virtues, not Free virtues.

Ah, look again, Spacious is special. Convenants, P. 114, "If building a lab from scratch, and if space permits, you may choose to start with this Virtue, without needing an extra season of work.". As to the other, memory makes a mocker of us all. I meant Superior Construction. The total safety, beginning, is still +3. What could I do, early, that would need more?