Help to a new saga


My name is wagner and i'm from Brazil.

Right now i'm doing some research to start a saga, and i have lots of questions. I hope you excuse my bad english and help me =)

First question: is the 4th edition wizard's grimoarie of any help on 5th edition?

When Hedge magic, revised edition will be released? (couldn't find any help on this on the forum =/)

The core points:

I'm planing to start a saga using the 5th edition, but i encontered some problems:

The first plan was to have the covenant located in Val du Bosque, but after talking with the players we decided to move to a more remote and wild location, one with more traces of paganism and faeries... Since i have the Lion of the North book i decided to move the future covenant to the Loch Leglean Tribunal.

What changed in that Tribunal from 3rd edition to 5th edition?

Since i'm pretty busy with work i decided to use some old adventures for this saga. I was thinking to use the Twelfth Night, the Midsummer's night dream and the tempest (if i could find this last one with good price for sale) as base and the broken covenant of cabelais, the pact of pasaquine and the dead legacy in middle of it...

The covenant will have a merenita (faeri upbring), a bonisagus, a verditius ("tresure hunter") and a bjornaer.

What do you think of the choices i made for adventures? I was thinking in the merenita on the Midsummer night dream to be the teacher of the merenita magus. i though that the the Twelfth Night and the Broken covenat of cabelais would be very interisting adventures for the verditius. I am still thinking in some things for the bjornaer and the bonisagus, any sugestions?

Their covenant will be the Lux ex Tenebris from the Twelfth Night. Any sugestions on how to convert this one to 5th edition?

How do i convert the statitics of those old adventures do 5th edition? any warnings or advises on doing this?

Is there some good detalied location, like Val du Bosque, with maps and such for this tribunal? Any sugestions for locations?

I couldn't find much information about the hibernia tribunal (is there a book of it?) And isn't very clear for me the relations of the Loch Leglean tribunal and the Stnohenge tribunal? should i have the Heirs to Merlin to?

I have planty of ideas for after the caracters made the gauntled, but how do i make the prelude before it? any advises?

I have played Ars magica sometimes, but never as SG. I have some books, someothers are burrowed from friends and some a player will bring from US next weekend.

well... i'm waiting for replys =)


PS: It is a shame that the portuguese version of the 4th edition of Ars Magica is the worst RPG translation of all times with hundreds of mistakes... and that no one has the intention to publish the 5th edition in portuguese =/

Very little

The date is still to be announced. I think it would be unexpected before September.

There isn't a fifth edition write up of Loch Legan but there are many underlying things regarding the Order and the realms that have been altered at least slightly between editions 3 and 5

Honestly it has been long enough ago that I don't remember most of these adventures well (Calibais, and Tempest are the exceptions).

There are fifth edition books that specifically deal with the uncovering of Ancient Mysteries (for the treasure hunter) and the inner secrets of faerie magic (for the Merinita) there are actually secret hidden magics for the Bjornaer and the veritious too (the Bonisagus have to publish everything they research).

You don't need these books but they will do a fair quantity of work for you in regards to sory design if you do. On the other hand it looks like you've got plenty of adventures lined up already. I would make a list of all of the magi and companion story flaws and see if I could weave connections between the story flaws and the adventures that you hope to run. This alone may well get you running for years.

I'd look at the numbers that your characters have and create appropriate challanges for them. (Perhaps skipping the step of constructing the numbers from base creature statistics all together).

There is no Hibernian book. There is much that is to like in the Stonehenge book but I think that you could get by without it. It depends on how much time you want to spend integrating the ideas in that book withthe game that you've already got going. I find that if I've got two or three other covenants to have the characters interact with and a rouges gallery of magi and issues for the tribunal meetings (if you roleplay them) that the hermetic detail from the ret of the tribunal books isn't needed. I just mine the myth parts.

I like to make certain that the players get up and running very quickly. perhaps you'd do flashbacks of their gauntlets in later games.

One idea that I used in a previous game is to have the characters, immediately prior to gauntlet, perform a task for a magus that the magus can not do because it conflicts with the oath (molesting the fae, interfereing with the mundanes and so on). In my game an elder magus had made an agreement with a faerie that he would have no member of the order enter the faerie's domain. At this point there was good reason to enter that domain and the -pre-swearing the oath- characters were just the ones to do it.

I disagree. I am not saying to run out and but the book if you don't already have it. But there is a lot of Hermetic social structure that essentially remains unchanged, the Periohrial code, and most of the spells are easilly converted.

Well, it can provide you some ideas but its not useful for game mechanics. The book and lab rules are now in 5th edition Covenants and the Hermetic Code stuff is now in True Lineages.

There hasn't been an update to Loch Leglean between editions, so the main change is that there is generally more wizards in the Order in 5th than in 3rd/4th. However, Loch Leglean was already very populous by Hermetic standards, so I wouldn't worry about that much.

They are all good adventures. You just need to be thoughtful on how you connect them. Obviously you are starting with Twelfth Night since Azenis needs to be gone before Midsummer's Night's Dream really works as intended. Tempest would follow after Midsummer's Night's Dream. Broken Covenant, Pact of Pasaquine, and adventures of your own design can and should be woven in between the story points of those three adventures. Deadly Legacy is a good adventure, but you'll need to do a lot of work to get it usable from the Loch Leglean tribunal... part of the plot involves travelling to "exotic" Loch Leglean. Knowing your storyline that far in advance means you can foreshadow effectively. The three main stories are quite open ended, so there is plenty of opportunity for the characters to weave their own stories into the mix.

The only thing that really needs to be changed is the stats for Azenis and the library. At 190ish, he's rather old by 5e standards. Use the 5e 'fast advancement' system to make him again, probably to about 150 or so. Then make the library using the 5e rules for a good winter library.

One thing to consider, though... Lion of the North's hermetic politics are built on the assumption that Whitburh is the only quaesitor around, allowing her to be rather partisan. So be careful how you introduce Severine and Stratus Enor unless you plan on really changing the politics of Lion of the North.

Broken Covenant exists for 5th edition already. The rest you should just be able to compare the creatures in the story to examples in the 5th rulebooks and wing it. None of those adventures have anything /really/ complicated to convert.

Heirs to Merlin is a good book, but you don't need it. Pretty much the three tribunals ignore each other, though there are conflicts along the Loch Leglean and Stonehenge tribunal borders. Traditionally, Hibernia has about half a dozen covenants that are split between 'pro Irish' and 'pro Norman' covenants with a few entirely into their own affairs. You may be better off making the neighboring tribunals up to suit your own stories, though.

If you want, I can post a brief description of the Hibernia tribunal, but its last write up was in 2nd edition....

I agree with you regarding the social structure sections and the periphrial code. I would however advise against converting the spells. Many of them are just plain bad.

Can you be a little more specific on the changes and the names of the books?

And thanks for the ideas =)

I only think of using it if a chance appears, o brought this book, with some others, for a very cheap price on a RPG convention =P That is the only motive to use it... but i can ignore it too =)

I will be carefull about it...

You don't need to... if i need something from ireland i will do for myself... For the beginning of the saga i think there will not be any interaction with the hibernia tribunal....

And thanks for the help =)

Spells were not all that bad, but yeah, the magic and mechanics from WGRE are outdated and unnessecary. But converting spells is fun, and it helps you learn the system. Don't reinvent them to still be broken though, LOL!

True Lineages and Guardians of the forest are the modern sources for Culture and Law though.

Ancient Magic is a book of long term stories/quests to uncover ancient magics of various sorts. Its handy if you are into that sort of thing.

The book on the Merinita and Bjornaer is Houses of Hermes: Mystery Cults. Its full of lots of information to expand their house specific abilities.

Personally, I'd break it up and use the scots' feud part as background for the saga. Perhaps the two swords are owned by the two clans nearest the covenant and they have a long running feud. At some point you can tell the story of the girl getting pregnant, the murder, the cursed swords, etc. Doesn't need to be tied to a larger plot...

Certainly what I'd recommend!

Nah, that's not a big deal. First, you don't need the whole crusade. You just need a legitimate threat to the covenant. The crusade is flavor, but not critical to the storyline.

More wars with the Sassenach (english) do just as good a job as the Albigensian Crusade. Henry and Alexander never went to war, IIRC, but Henry rattled the saber a lot. No reason you couldn't add another English invasion without great difficulty.

and is there any in detail location in scotland as Val du Bosque?

Umm, there isn't a miracle at the end of Midsummer's Night's Dream. There is at the end of Twelth Night. MND ends with the recovery of the shawl and the restoration of Cernunnos (momentarily). The crusade has little to do with the characters directly... its just background for why the rest of the Order is too busy to help and an excuse for Hagen to kill people. Both those are easily replicated.

The miracle in Twelth Night and the religious threat to the covenant are both local matters, so don't require a wider threat of crusade.


Sorry, there isn't anything like the Val du Bosque for Scotland. The closest is some Isle of Man write ups in the fanzines (Man could be in any of the three tribunals). Doesn't sound like that would be an especially good fit for the saga you have in mind, though.

Indeed... i will search for a location with similar geography in real scotland, them i will adapt the names and some of the NPCs... I think that for this saga the lowlands are more suitable...

Guys, you helped me a lot... thank you very much...

Well, the Grampian Mountains could be a replacement for the Pyrenees..

But I think you might consider scaling down the mountainous nature of the Val into more hilly instead. Consider the northern side of the Cheviots..along the Teviot River, perhaps. That makes an English invasion a more credible threat, while you can put the snooty "we are safe, so hahaha" covenants (Doissetep in the actual adventure) up in the Grampians.

Horsingas is on the south side of the Cheviots, nearer the Tyne. That would give the campaign an interesting conflict right there....whether to help or hinder Horsingas and what to do when Horsingas' actions bring about the raids that lead to the Midsummer's Night's Dream storyline in the first place?

Vormaerin i really liked your ideas... i will take a look at some maps, and this will take a while =)

But those ideas are very good ones =)