Familiar Enchantment Rules Question

The bonus for Inventive Genius literally only applies "when you invent new spells, craft magic items, and make potions." (pg. 44) Clear enough, but it doesn't explicitly include familiars. It would nonetheless seem odd for it not to apply, since it applies to everything else (does it apply to Longevity Rituals, too?) Or would it apply only to echantments of the familiar bond, but not to the initial binding?

What about a Magic Theory specialization in Enchanting Items? Would that apply to familiars? Just to enchanting the bond?

How about the Specialization bonus from a lab? Covenants (pg. 112) does after all list "Familiar" and "Items" as separate specializations?

Scott Orr

By the RAW, Inventive Genius does not apply to familiars or Longevity rites. Nor would it apply to opening arts or extracting vis.

A MT specialization in items is just that, it has no effect on familiars (which is it's own specialization).

Btw - if you keep calling your familiar an item, (s)he might be insulted...

Well, if you're being literal, yes, but in the case of Inventive Genius, at least, it's nonsenical, since enchanting items has more in common with enchanting familiars than it does with the other things Inventive Genius (literallly) affects, inventing spells and making potions. In short, it looks like an editorial oversight, not a design decision.

Scott Orr

Oh, and no, the Magic Theory description doesn't list familiars among the sample specializations--and it seems a pretty obvious specialization. I suppose it could be an oversight. :slight_smile:


Which is partly why I said by RAW...
However, forging the bond isn't really inventing anything - it has far more in common with opening an apprentices arts than inventing a new effect, or mayhap opening the enchantment of an item... (which inventive genius does not apply to...)


Oh, and for your second post; the specializations hardly seems to be a comprehensive list - more like typical examples. However, I do figure that anything that can be a specialisation in the lab can be one in MT.

Things that are NOT lab activities can be MT specializations as well: recognizing spells for example. So yes, the list is not comprehensive.

Invenitive genious is a minor virtue. it is better to limit it somewhat for a simple equilibria thing, I would say. Also, I think that enchanting a familiar is quite different from enchainting a magic item. The familiar is much more personal than anything you can enchant. even a talisman does not change you as much as a familiar does, and the rest of the lab activities do not deal with living stuff. I cpould eadsily accept the familiar or longevity potions being in the list, buyt I would drop something else from the list in that case.

A focus in "Spirit genious" or something like that, affecting longevity potions, familiars and talismans can easily be designe din any case: you have a better understanding of your intrinsic magic :slight_smile:

I would give this correction, your longevity potion does get the inventive genius. If it is a ritual/spell, potion or longevity item, it is still under the auspices of inventive genius.

It should apply where you are actively creating something brand new, a formula that didn't exist before.

It does not apply to learning a spell from a lab text. It does not apply to investigating enchantments. It does not apply to extracting Vis. These are all processes that are already defined.

It does not apply to your familiar. I am not sure w\hy but maybe because of the nature of the bond.

At least when it is invented. :wink:
I always considered it to include that. Would be odd not to i think.

Its not inventing something...

Totally NO.

Of course. Might even be advantage for a great covenant to make a highly specialised lab for working with familliars, and rent it out. I figured out a way to get +16 to just about any specialisation with a lab with -1 Upkeep, which makes for a very nice and cost effective way to create extra labs.

It is indeed creating something new and different, and the fact that you can't create a lab text for someone else to follow highlights its uniqueness. Perhaps you object to the term "invent" because you think of invention as something that involves machinery, that is, inanimate objects. But humans can invent things involving animate beings as well, like creating new types of organizations or social relationships. Other than the implicit assumption that invent=inanimate object, I'm not sure I see your argument.

But that goes double for enchanting the bond, as opposed to the original binding: it uses the normal rules for enchanting invested devices, with some minor modifications.

I think part of the problem is that the Inventive Genius description says "enchanting items", but the word "item" doesn't have a definition in the game. The rules are for enchanting "devices". You could argue that a familiar is neither an "item" nor a "device", but the rules do allow you to enchant a living thing, and one could argue just as forcefully that a non-familiar living thing is no more an item or device than a familiar is, but, given that you use exactly the same method for enchanting a living thing as for enchanting a non-living device (that is, in game terms, an enchanted living thing is in fact a "device"), I don't think anyone would argue that Inventive Genius wouldn't apply in that case.

Let me make one more argument: it's just simpler to let Inventive Genius apply to everything (everything that's an original creation, anyone), rather than having to remember a bunch of ad hoc exceptions. The game is complicated enough as it is.

Scott Orr

I would say Inventive Genius does apply to all things that are new, as long as Magic Theory is involved. For specialization, I would consider Familiars to be separate from Items. My ideas for Magic Theory specializations include Spells, Items, Familiars, any one Art, Experimentation, working from Text, and stuff like that. Same as for Labs in Covenants.

No, the one who made familiar bonding possible, she (Merinita) invented something. The rest are just following that procedure.

Where did i say or even remotely infer that? If you make an enchanted item for the first time, you get the bonus, if someone else makes a copy based on your text, you dont.
Exactly same principle in this case.

And they are indeed neither. No question about that.

Which is EXACTLY what im doing already. But anyone following the script of someonelse, ISNT creating something new. Merinita would have benefitted from the Virtue, those COPYING her, doesnt.

by that token, you could say anyone enchanting an Item is copying Verditius, any spell is copying Flambeau or Gurnicus, and there is no originality. But familiars are unique. No lab text will help you. Every familiar is new and original.

I can act like a juvenile jerk, too, but I get enough of that from my undergrads, so please let's avoid that silliness.

I think you mean "imply".

Well, damn, if I realized I could win debates by saying "No question about that" in regards to any point I wanted to make, without actually having to prove it, I could have short-circuited a lot of very long arguments. Wouldn't it be a wonderful world if everyone else were as smart as you are?

I don't think you're following her script in the binding (since each animal is different--and in Hermetic magic, changing the target changes the effect). You certainly can't make that argument for enchanting the bond, since each magus creates different enchantments, and since each of the bond enchantments is created (yea, invented) just like any other invested effect. No, you don't produce a lab text, but that's not because you're copying someone else. Quite the opposite: it's because the effect is so unique to you and your particular familiar that it's not possible to modify it for another.

Scott Orr

Actually, you do produce a Lab Text. It is just useless, since the proceedure cannot be duplicated for it is redundant for that familiar useless for another animal.

Ah, yeah, I had forgotten that part--if for some reason you need to cast the same enchantment on the same familiar again, you can use it, can't you?

Scott Orr

Yeah, but that situation will likely never come up. If the Familiar Bond gets cut, the animal will most likely never want anything to do with you ever again (Gurnicus section of True Lineages)

Then i suggest you not use condescending tone and/or language based on a strawman argument.

Doubt it. But perhaps you are unable to recognise anything but the primary, narrow use of a word?

Certainly, but since 99.99% are not equal or better i guess i just have to live with the oooh so terribly great burden that reality is otherwise.

Not the exact script, as i said, following the procedure or ritual or whatever you want to call it.
You´re creating something based on specific previous knowledge.

Yes and no, you´re still using the same specific "inherited" procedure and applying it differently.

Wll, that's the situation with a Familiar. You are taking the inherited proceedure and applying it differently. No two Familiars are ever the same.

Actually, I can see you having to use yrfamiliar lab total again if a magical botch severed your links to your animal dude. It is far from unheard of in the OoH for that to happen. So yes, the lab text can be useful sometimes. Do not throw it to the trash can! :laughing:

For a minor virtue I think that inventive genious is good enough. If you want to cover the other lab totals, you can easily design an other virtue to cover them as well :slight_smile:


Would -you- let someone who had been either a) experimenting on you, or b) working on you in a horribly unsafe lab, do it again? ^^

I can't think of any other reasons offhand you might botch in the lab.. there probably are though