Here's lookin' at you, kid

In my saga there´s an increase in characters with entrancement - and spells with R:Eye I played by ear so far.

Does someone have a workable handling of the question if/when a character is looking into the eyes of another character? Are there any rules I don´t remember? Houserules are welcome, too. I don´t want to decide all "eye"-situations in the heat of a moment.


Being in conversation with someone is an important part of Eye contact. In the heat of the moment, such as in combat, definitely not easily. A spell like Fooling the Eye, fast cast might help establish eye contact.

One thing that should inhibit Eye contact is suddenly rattling off words in Latin (if the speaker isn't a Latin speaker) or notable words for a Hermetic spell (if the spell recipient is also a magus or otherwise familiar) and the gestures involved. Deft Form, Quiet Magic, Subtle Magic and Mastery or just taking the penalty for still and quiet or silent can be used in combination to overcome the problems of Eye contact.

It's natural for people to look each other in the eye. Even trained warriors do it, to try and guess where their opponent will attack next. That said, if someone is suspicious of such things, you should probably require a Guile vs Folk Ken roll to trick someone into eye contact.

I've always found the guidelines in the corebook (and a little common sense - no eye contact at 500 paces!) cover pretty much all cases of interest:

Common sense suggests, to me, to not look someone in the eye when they suddenly start speaking another language and wiggiling their fingers at me.

This is entirely true, but again, as I suggest above, speaking Latin and wiggling fingers about isn't really (acceptable) social behavior. It might work once on a person, but probably never again.

That would be true only if you knew that looking into the eyes of that person could be dangerous - from previous experience or from someone's warning. In that case, you'd probably avoid eye contact in the first place, regardless of what he's saying or wiggling. But for most folks in Mythic Europe, that would not be true.


In a world where magical powers do exist, where people can be entranced, looking people in the eye may not be as common as we understand. There's something to be said for getting a bite at the apple, if you're an unknown quantity. At Eye range, you're still making vocalizations that are heard out to 15 paces, and you're still making odd gestures. Should someone get a chance to look away under those circumstances? Is that not a reason to avoid eye contact?

Actually, I think the natural tendency is to look at people who speak a language you do not understand. Think about it, our natural tendency would be to look at them, trying to decypher the meaning of what they are trying to say. That includes reading their body language, expression of their face, etc. Making eye contact is then almost a certainty.

BUT, on the other hand, that is all conditioned by the setting. Meeting a stranger in a dark wood that is said to be haunted by faeries is completely different than having a discussion in a tavern. And yes, to an extent, blatantly weird behaviour would make you pull back from the magus. Would the target avoid eye contact? If something like this has never happened to them, I think it would be unlikely. If, however, they have suffered from such an entracement before they probably would...

In short, if you don't know, make a simple die roll against an Ease Factor which reflects the conditions. The dark woods would probably be an EF of 9, while the tavern, with subtle gestures and soft voice, might be an EF of 3. And if you know for sure that the target has suffered from such an entracement, then you might want to increase the EF by 1 to 3.

Something like that...

Someone who looks like a noble and acts like a noble, I'm keeping my eyes to the ground. He looks like a shady character who might be out to get me, I will give him more respect than he deserves and only give him downcast glances. No way I'm going to stand out.

I am the local noble or his sheriff, you bet I'm going to show them who's the boss.