Flexible Formulaic Magic and Target Definitions

The question has come up as to what can be done with target and flexible formulaic magic.

Is size in relation to a target part of the TARGET or some stat all on its own.

So is Target Individual and Target individual of size +1 different targets that Flexible formulaic magic can flex the spell between the two.

Is Target group to affect up to 10 people different than target group+1 to affect 100 a different target (+1 magnitude or +5 to spell level) different targets that flexible formulaic magic can affect it.

It all comes down to how you see size and target and I would like to know how others on the board see it.

I'd say the virtue allows for any alteration of the Range, Duration, target of 1 magnitude, so the examples you gave are all ok. On a stricter reading through I could see it ruled as not allowed. Given the fact it is a major virtue, I'd prefer it to have some flexibility.

We allow FFM to change any parameter. Size is a parameter, even if it defaults to size 0. So, anything that is strictly hermetic and keeps the Base of the spell can be done with FFM. Been there, done size changes with no problem :slight_smile:


Our troupe debated the issue long ago.
We reached the conclusion that allowing Size changes as part of Target changes was against the RAW.
We also reached the conclusion that changing from one category to another at the same level (e.g. from R:Eye to R:Touch) was against the RAW.
We decided to houserule against the RAW in both cases (allowing either a Size change or a Target type change), since we felt Flexible Formulaic Magic was a bit too weak compared to many other Major Hermetic Virtues.

For the same reason, i prefer running FFM with lots of room for margin.

Later i made a Minor Virtue "Variable Formulaic Magic" which was mostly a strict reading of FFM that if the change was neutral or reduced a magnitude, the spell was cast as if a magnitude higher, and if effectively adding a magnitude, was cast as if it was 2 magnitudes higher.
While letting FFM also change Base level as long as the actual effect is the same, and making a Greater Virtue version that allowed doing more than one change(3 IIRC), with each change beyond the first having the same penalty as when using VFM. So casting a level 20 spell as if it was level 40, you could have it´s Duration change from Momentary to Month.

The question is not "would you allow FFM to change any parameter of a spell" but "Is Size equal to Target", as Ezzelino perfectly understood.

What happened: Ladyphoenix assumed that FFM allowed him to change the Size of his spells, having a spell whose target is Group gain a +1 modifier for size.
I told him that, by the RAW, this was not the case ("You may raise or lower the casting level of the spell by five to raise or lower one (only) of Range, Duration, and Target by one step") and that allowing it to change other parameters, such as Size, needed the approval of the Troupe.

He countered by saying that a change of size was a change of Target.

So the actual question is, in fact, do these 2 spells have a different Target, as defined by the rules:
Range: Voice, Duration: Sun, Target: Individual
Range: Voice, Duration: Sun, Target: Individual, + 1 Extra Size, + 1 complexity, + 1 unnatural.

To me, the Target is the same (Individual), and the extra size is one of the numerous modifiers that may add to a spell's level. To him, it isn't, and we actually have 2 different Targets here.

IMO, he's perfectly free to ask the troupe that FFM may vary any or all of the other parameters of a spell, such as base level (for General Spells), extra size, complexity, moving image/sounds... but, by the rules, these are not part of what FFM can affect, and he shouldn't assume otherwise on his own.
Unless, of course, one can provide from a rules a quotation such as "adding extra magnitudes for size are considered a change of Target", or "Size and Target mean the same thing"