I am trying to wrap my head around a sahir from the covanants book. He is a sahir but an Irish version(that is not the wierd part).
Why do they have elementalist? It seems to me that the spirit spells are all vim based.
The summoning, sensing, and bargaining are all fine with a magical ability?
Do I need spirit magic?
Thanks in advance!
It's because they deal with spirits associated with the elements, so they can use the elemental Forms if they prefer. Probably more importantly, since Sihr allows them to study these spirits, they can improve the elemental Forms relatively quickly, and Elemental Magic will boost that further.
Ahhha! I thought they study elemental spirits and after reading your comment and then jinn it makes sense!
I think it makes much more sense if I understand the jinn and what they are capable of so I can see the point of the whole thing.
Any suggestions to read about the spirits they deal with and how sahir benefit from them?
If we are talking about the guys from the Covenant of Longmist in the Through the Aegis book, then they aren't sahirs at all, they just use similar mechanics. Instead they belong to a tradition called Corrguineach that deals with elemental spirits.
They use an ability called Sihr which is mechanically pretty much the same as the Sihr ability that sahirs use, but instead of calling on jinn they call on elemental spirits.
See Houses of Hermes: Societates
Page 109 mentions the Corrguineach as a reskin of the Hermetic Sahirs.
Hermetic Sahirs in turn are described on p133-137, including a description of the variant of Sihr they use.
For the non-hermetic Sahirs active in the Mythic Middle-East and for more information about jinn, see The Cradle & The Crescent.
These are the guys I’m talking about!
I looked up the corriguiach and could not find it on 109. But, this explains it very well.
Any suggestions on good arts, spells, virtues and flaws to have?
They are mentioned in the insert "Ringing the Changes" in HoH:S p109, together with several other suggestions for how to move and rename the provided traditions to some other place.
Arts: Rego and all the elemental Forms. Vim can also be useful.
I'm playing a sahir right now. Some advice:
- Have at least Magic Lore and Faerie Lore at 1. Infernal Lore at merely 1 is a risk, because you can afford not to identify a magic jinn, but not identifying an infernal jinn and bargaining with it is a higher risk. You can mitigate that by just not dealing with something if you're not sure (the local aura helps to guess, but you know, demons are sneaky). The magic and faerie lore are things you'll easily increase if you summon to learn.
- Have Area Lore in a few regions depending on setting, because you'll want to travel. If you don't have area lore - you can't guess their center of power.
- Anything that improves Sihr is worth having. A half-assed Sihr score is not that interesting. Pick Puissant + Affinity. Cautious can be interesting, as can cautious with Bargain. Frankly, consider sihr your primary art and specialize in it. Consider this: The higher your Sihr score, the more powerful jinn you can summon, and the less it costs you at equal power. At low level, you can summon jinn that can't do a lot, can't give a lot of xp if you're summoning them just to learn, yet will cost you more vis than you would spend on reading a tractatus - not worth it. Puissant or a high score in Bargain is a nice add as well, but less important. You could stick with Bargain 3 and be fine.
- Rego Vim is important. Warding yourself vs a jinn that might be angry if you botch, or that might just not want to be summoned is smart. Personal or Circle Wards are a smart investment. Penetration is important, but globally less important than your Sihr score or Bargain.
- Second Sight. Not essential to summon a jinn, but useful to see them in their natural area before you locate them.
- An appropriate learning virtue. I say appropriate because HoH:S seems to say that jinn are teaching you, but TC&TC seems to say they're significato. So Good Student or Free Study are interesting. If it's a significato, jinn are also likely to be found in appropriate areas, so Study Bonus/Requirement could be worth looking into. Have the conversation with your group over whether it's teaching or vis study xp. if your troupe says vis study xp, make the math over how much vis you expect to spend and how much xp you can expect to get to see how powerful a jinn you need to summon to be worth it for you.
- Independent Study is not a bad virtue to have either since locating jinns if you're not a member of the Order of suleiman means going out into the field which means having the frequent opportunity to earn adventure xp
- Sometimes, what you want to learn in a study after summoning them in their loci, is their true name to summon them again wherever you go. This means learning Realm Lore, and dedicating 4 xp towards the True Name.
Also consider how vis rich your campaign is going to be. If your main art consumes vis twice or more a year, and you expect that's going to be a problem, Personal Vis Source could help. On the other hand, it's also my experience that if you adventure a lot to find new magic and faerie sites, only a stingy GM doesn't put any vis sources to find. Over time, that can accumulate and mean the personal vis source is not that important.
These are just standard advice. There are plenty of ways to build a good sahir or Corrguineach. If studying from them a lot, Elemental magic could make a nice build, since they're going to be frequent finds which means a lot of opportunity to increase your 4 arts. Mine's been built with Flawless Magic, which I've used among other things to make my wards stronger, and my spells stronger, even though I'm not sinking a lot of points in arts at the moment.
Super helpful! I am going to start crunching the numbers on all of it. I’m using the published apprentice as a template(I’m sure I can customize him)