How many Build Points for an Item of Quality?

Items of Quality (page 124 , HoH: Mystery Cults).

My players want an enchanted ship , something that will hold about 10 people.
If they get Item of Quality Ship Sail (+07 to Sailing) (ArM 05 , page 110) , what Build Point value do i charge?
The ship would not fit in a standard lab for enchantment , so do i charge more for finding a specialist Lab?
Or someone with the Hermetic Architecture Mystery (page 97 , TMRE)?

If i have an IoQ Bell (+05 Warning) , does that add to a perception + awareness roll to detect danger at sea?
Or +05 to alert people after danger is detected?
Floor gives +07 movement across.
Would an IoQ ship deck alllow +07 to balance rolls during rough weather?

No. But you could make a telescope or binoculars to get such a bonus.


Heh... Mmm, it may give +7 to balance rolls while moving on it but not while standing still.
Hard to say. "movement across" doesnt directly concern balance so it might be a bad bonus to give overall.

OTOH, if it suits the game, use it anyway, maybe come up with some extra justification, although i cant think of anything relevant right now... Its not outrageous but it feels like a rather odd bonus.

IMO a sail would actually fit fine for IoQ purposes in a standard large lab. After all, they repair them belowdecks on ships that aren't that big.... So, no specialty lab required.

As for the others, they get bonuses only in their use as those itmes.

For the Bell, people within earshot would get a bonus to hearing the bell and understanding that it is an alarm.
Bells announce danger, but do not detect them, so it makes no sense for a bell to give a bonus to detecting danger; that would make it a super-talisman!
For the Deck of the Ship, that sounds perfect (+7 to balance rolls).

The rules seem pretty clear. An Item of Quality is an lv 10 "magic item", so two build points. Some of them could be off the beaten path, so if the players get exciting (like a "Boat of Quality") then allow it but give them a minor story hook, showing they have an IOU with a powerful Verditius.

Looking at more items , Hourglass gives +03 Increasing Speed.
I'm pretty certain that this does not equate to +03 knots for ship movement.
Should add +03 to a Profession roll to make best use of prevailing winds and current.

Aren't those all bonuses to your Lab Total when you're making something? i.e. if you're making an item that sounds a warning, perhaps linked to an InSomething to trigger it, you'd get a +5 to the Lab Total when making it. Or, making a sail that adds to a ship's speed, you would get a +7 to the Lab Total when instilling the effect.

That's how I read it, anyway.

Yes it is except that he's playing around with Items of Quality (HoH: MC), which let's him take that bonus out of the lab.

Please note that, unless I'm much mistaken, you have to directly use the IoQ in order to gain the bonus.
You can't just have an IoQ hourglass somewhere on board and claim a +3, you'd need to use it somehow for the roll you want to increase.
It's fairly obvious how you'd eg. use a shield to defend yourself, but how exactly would you use an hourglass for making a boat go faster?

For measuring speed, you throw something that floats into the water paralell with the ships bow or a specific part then measure the time it takes for the ship to move enough that the item is paralell to the stern. Not at all precise but much better than you might think.

But yes it gets rather stretched to keep doing that all the time. As this is used to assist with dead reckoning, it would feel more natural to make it a bonus to navigation.

Alternatively, you can measure speed by throwing that same something attached to a light rope that you give out as needed, wait for a specific amount of time, mark how much rope you gave out and therefore which distance the ship sailed during that amount of time; and then haul back your something for reuse later.

And to make it easier, you can make knots in the rope at regular intervals, so you just have to count how many you passed through. Work out the distance between the knots beforehand to keep it simple for the illiterate sailor who will do the actual measuring, and, what do you know ? one knot in the rope means one nautical mile per hour of speed. Which is why sailors still measure their speed in knots...

Now, if you make a really tiny hourglass and use it for said measurement, or maybe a large hourglass but marked so you can measure smaller intervals, you can probably claim its bonus for a relevant Profession:Sailor roll.

Yup, but the chip log method didnt develop until a few hundred years post game-era. It´s essentially an improvement on the version i said. Both still requires reasonably accurate timing though, so the glass would be relevant for navigation purposes either way.
Knots were very likely not the unit of measuring speed in the middle ages. Long time since i read it last but IIRC the common unit was (Spanish) leagues per watch(or something like that, per 2 or 4 hours i think).
Though areas with viking influence or ancestors used something else and eastern med probably also.

On a related topic , Item of Quality: Quill (+07 Scribing).
Why does every apprentice not get one of these!
Would they not be standard equipment in every covenant library?
(Copying Books page 166 , ArM 05)

Quill pens don't actually last that long. (Covenants Page 85)

Though further enchantment so the item resists wear would probably be worth it in this case.

but then it's quite a lot of vis for an apprentice' toy

A +7 quill would be appreciated by all the scribes in the order, and all the magi that do some writing in the lab (transalate lab notes into readable format, copy spells, write books...). Mundanes would appreciate them as well for the same reasons. There is a market for thiose for sure, but I pretty much doubt that

  1. Anyone with this ability will be willing to become a chain production for quills since they don't have much prestige. Why make Montblancs when you can create Ferraris?

  2. There are enough people in the order with the Items of Quality virtue for more than a dozen of those to exist, if any exist at all.


Actually, the improvement in the final product may be appreciated by the reader, but it would not necessarily improve the production rate, only the variable quality of penmanship, etc.

An IoQ does not increase one's score in an Ability. Instead, "the empowered item of quality provides a bonus to the user’s roll when it is used in an appropriate manner" (HoH:MC p 124, col iii, par 3 mid). No roll (as for copying) = no bonus (and "translating" is more in the mind or the tongue than written, arguably), at least as the rules are written.

These are not "enchanted" items that magically give an abstract increase in performance, but are more like tools - they must be used (as mentioned above). The extension of this idea to something like a ship's deck for a bonus to Athletics (Balance) or a sail for ship's speed could work, but just because an hourglass is related to "increasing speed" does not allow an IoQ to improve a ship's speed the way the same hourglass, as an enchanted item, might be able to. The tricky part is when the Trade involved is not a "craft trade" - a knight's sword, a courtier's clothing, a king's sceptre, an exchequer's abacus, and a barkeep's broom are all slightly more abstract "tools" related to the trade that are given as canon examples but might not add to every aspect of that "trade".

So, allowing a person to copy more with an IoQ quill may be a reasonable houserule, but "writing" an original text involves Language rather than Scribing - and that may or may not rely appropriately on the quill.

In my troupe's last saga we allowed IoQ's to provide a bonus to any Ability total and not just rolls. (Except lab-work) It wasn't hugely unbalanced as the character who could make them (mine) had better things to do then churn out IoQ's all the time. (Though I think it accounted for every season of service after he initiated). Plus I don't think I ever got a chance to raise his Philosophiae over it's starting total, so the bonuses never got two outrageous.

I wouldn't do it quite that way again though. Particulaly if your buying IoQ's with Covenant points. It's to much bonus for two few points. Instead I think I'm going to say the bonus for seasonal activities based on an ability to totals will be something like x/3 round up. Further more if you are buying IoQ's with build points I'd probably say every +3 bonus or fraction thereof is equal to a magnitude 10 or possibly more. After all the Magi with the really high Phil totals needed to get high bonuses are going to charge a commiserate price.

Opportunity cost. Someone has to spend ~90 days making each one.

That said, this particular mystery doesn't exactly need to be tied to Verditius, mechanics-wise. (By which I mean it works perfectly fine as a stand-alone.) Combine it with Craft Magic (plus some original research if your SG is mean about it) and you can make MT*2 per season.