When a familiar learns from his magus through Teaching or Training, or through Exposure when helping the magus to perform a joint project (this will almost always be lab work), he reduces the advancement penalty for Might by 5.
A familiar must be purchased with Positive and Negative Traits, using the usual +1/+3/-1/-3 system. Each familiar starts with default traits, and 1 extra point. The default familiar is a Summer (360 XP’s) grog-level character (base Might 3), of a species that’s not typically taken as a pet, with Int –3 (formerly had Cunning; the familiar does get 6 Characteristics points for this Int) and Size 0 or less.
Autumn Character (Major): the familiar starts with 720 XP’s.
Companion-level Character (Major): the familiar has a base Might of 10.
Human Intelligence (Minor): the familiar has a maximum Int of +1.
Inconspicuous (Minor): the familiar is of a species normally kept as a pet, or small enough not to be taken notice of by most mundanes. A familiar capable of taking an inconspicuous shape or otherwise hiding his true shape from mundanes must take this Trait.
Non-Hermetic Power (Major): the familiar has a Ritual Power that enables it to do something not usually achievable by Hermetic Magic (such as grant Virtues). This trait must be taken once for each relevant Ritual Power. Note that this Trait is not required for Ritual Powers that could be duplicated by Hermetic Magic (such as permanent healing).
Positive Intelligence (Major): the familiar has a maximum Int of +5.
Ability Block with Magic Theory (Major): the familiar has an Ability Block that includes Magic Theory, and therefore is unable to serve as a lab assistant.
At odds (Major): the familiar often disagrees and argues with the magus, and they have trouble cooperating. This familiar should be played by another player.
Independent (Minor): the familiar has his own agenda, and may not always do what the magus would wish (he’ll probably help out in critical lab projects, but he may not want to spend all his free seasons studying Magic Theory). This familiar should be played by another player.
Large (Minor): the familiar is Size +1 or larger, and requires a Minor Lab Virtue rather than a Free Lab Virtue as a lab assistant.
Monstrous appearance (Minor): because of his size or appearance, the familiar tends to inspire panic and/or loathing in mundanes. A familiar capable of taking a less threatening shape or otherwise hiding his true shape from mundanes may not take this Trait.
Noncombatant (Minor): the familiar has the Noncombatant Flaw.
Spring Character (Minor): the familiar starts with 120 XP’s.
Transformed Animal (Minor): the familiar is magical, but has a base Might of 0 and no Magic Qualities, unless he takes matching Inferiorities. A Transformed Animal starts with normal Abilities for his species (with, perhaps, a few more XP’s for any Abilities necessitated by magical traits).
Vis requirement (Minor): whether due to a Hunger for (Form) Magic, a deal made as part of the familiar agreeing to be bound, or for some other reason, the Familiar must be provided with at least one pawn of vis per season.
Warped Animal (Major): the familiar is a Warped Animal, with no Might; he may begin with any Warping Score chosen by the player. A Warped Animal starts with normal Abilities for his species (with, perhaps, a few more XP’s for any Abilities necessitated by magical traits).