How to Enchant Something Bigger than a Door...

This was inspired by the discussion of a magical flying boat. Many "cool" enchanted items are very large, too large to fit down a hall, or through a doorway. My question- where does the average covenant enchant something too large to fit into/out of the average lab?

A magical boat. A magical wagon. An enchanted warhorse. Worse still, what if you want to enchant something that is "fixed in place", that can't be so easily moved, such as an existing gateway, or wall, or arch, or bridge? How does one enchant a room, or an entire building?

The rules for a lab require a covered area, and a season to set it up (and that at a -3, iirc). Do you set it up in place, then tear it down after you're done? Do some covenants have barn-sized labs for just such projects? How does one set up a lab to enchant a ship on the water? (Or could it only be done in a special drydock???)

None of these are overwhelming- I can certainly answer these myself for my own sagas, but I was wondering what some of the other experiences/solutions were... (and let's not rehash the discussion of "ring" duration here- I'm talking "Enchantments", thnx!) :wink:

The Daedalus isnt magic :wink:
The magic item is a small miniature boat that enchants the big ship via Touch effects :wink:

I'll be darned if I can remember what book it's in, but there is a section in SOME 5th Ed book SOMEWHERE that speaks about either setting up a temporary lab in the wild to enchant big stuff or taking parts of a bigger object and enchanting them to cause the whole to become enchanted.

Helpful, ain't I?

It's in Mysteries, among the numerology/geometry/architecture ones.

If you are using standard ship-building techniques for 'The Daedalus' ,
then it should be able to sail naturally on the ocean ,
without magic.

How about an enchanted keel though?

If something should happen to the miniature , you have a fallback.
You could include other useful (and potentially life-saving) abilities in an enchanted keel.

Indeed it is. It's called "Hermetic Architecture", and it's a Minor Mystery Virtue. Basically you enchant several small devices and place them within a larger structure in specific places so that the seperate devices may be united to work as one, as though the larger whole were enchanted instead.

An example might be a boat ringed by several enchanted lanters, or a grove with a pattern of totems in it, each identically enchanted to provide the larger area with the power invested in them.

I've seen rules somewhere for setting up large outside labratories, such as around a ship, but once again my memory fails me. There's A LOT of pages of this sort of thing :slight_smile:

That sounds mightily appropriate.

Although I like the hermetic archetecture virtue. I would also allow a magus to spend a season or two setting up a laboartory inside the structure that they wish to enchant.

It could be argued that this devalues the mystery initiation. I do not think that it does in that the non-initiated magus still has to fill the entire structure with vis, they don't have access to all of the cool improvements that they've put into their own lab, and it isn't too much harder to initiate a minor virtue than to spend six months creating a lab inside of a boat.

I don't mean to derail the discussion (which is a preamble that means "I still might"), but what do you folks think of putting together a "mini-initiation" script for a single virtue?

Here's why: We have a Verditious Astrologer PC in my group, who would love the Hermetic Astrology Virtue, however we've been playing for a while and I don't really just want him to re-do his character to acquire it.

I'm also not really interested in making up (or using) a whole Mystery Cult for this purpose. We have another in our saga that everyone will have to deal with, and I don't want to muddy the waters too much.

I was thinking of just using an NPC who has it to teach it to our PC, using the guidelines for a Minor script to entail the cost, and emphasizing the "teaching aspect" over the "mystery aspect". That is no cult rituals, just an intense couple of seasons of training.

The script would look something like this:
Teacher's (Mystagogue's) Order of Hermes Lore (as this is a "Common Magic") 4
Initiate must travel to a far Astrological significant place at an Astrological significant time (+3)
Sympathetic Bonus (+1)
Mystagogue sacrifices time to teach (to pay back a debt) (+3)
Initiate sacrifices a self-made magic item to dissect (+3)
Initiate must spend a second season studying Astrology (only exposure experienc) (+1)

This give a 15 script, enough for a Minor Virtue.

Let's not kid anyone, Ang - since your post has nothing to do with the topic, that's exactly what you meant to do. :imp:

And if anyone responds here, you've succeeded. :unamused:

As personally convenient as it might be for you to just steal this one, feel free to start a new thread for your new topic - that's what I did with this one. How lazy are you feeling today, anyway? :confused:

Back on topic...

So, if a mage does go to the trouble of building a "lab" around a boat, or an outside wall, or in a (non-covenant) room... what do mundanes think? Hardly subtle or low-profile, and not exactly a Sanctum, either, for that matter. From both the mundane and hermetic realms, invites a lot of potential headaches.

it is perfectly reasonable to set up a laboratory in the field - if you don't mind the time & expense, and the penalties (see Convenants - Lab chapter) for having no walls, no roof etc.

Once you have the Initiated Virtue you can charge whatever seems reasonable to provide your sodales with your very valuable services.

Ok but would you allow the lab to be set up in the hold/captain's cabin of the ship to be enchanted or would you force the magus to set up in a shipyard outside of the ship? Or more to the point, if a magus wants to enchant the tower within which his lab resides, does he need to make a temporary lab outside of the tower or can he do it without relocating?

Well, it did in my head. I had this thread open looking up "Hermetic Archetecture ", which led me to writing an extensive reply to your question. That got me to thinking about how little help that is, since there's no way to get access to these sort of Common Virtues, that sort of sound like things one might be able to learn. That lead me back to this thread to post my supposistion. I had written the script for a PC in my game, so I included it, I guess I could have changed it to Archetecture, but I didn't.

Sorry I wasn't more clear, I'll clear on out.

the item to be enchanted has to fit inside whatever Lab you are working in, with space for the magus to work.
So if you want a lab built around a whole ship, you need a BIG lab!

And no, you can't enchant the Tower in the Lab inside the Tower -- UNLESS, you use the Mystery Virtue of Hermetic Architecture to make a series of manageably sized items to combine to enchant the whole vis The Mystery.

That's the whole point of Hermetic Architecture!

An Elementary Lab can be set up in a single season so long as it has a single purpose-- such as enchanting an object (that's larger than your regular lab). Depending on the environment, you'd probably want to start in Spring with Lab Construction (At least you'd get Magic Theory exposure!) and then get the project done over Summer and Fall. A magus doing the work in winter would likely be seeing health penalties unless he took magical precautions.

There are a number of flaws and virtues out of Covenants that would let you personalize that lab-- and it would be up to your SG (I'd imagine) as to what would be an acceptable number of each, so long as they balance.

Elementary is a major flaw
Exposed to the elements is a minor flaw (iirc)
Missing Ingredients is a minor flaw that can be taken twice
Depending on the setup, things like cramped or poor heating/lighting might be fitting...

you get the idea...


Forgive me if I state the obvious.

I think for most things, such as a boat, constructing a HUGE magical lab actually sounds very appropriate. So a huge hanger/dock would serve as the magus's lab (and sanctum), should he be in the business of making magical ships.

For fixed things such as a bridge or truly gigantic objects such as a tower or castle this would not suffice. For this he would need to set up an outdoor lab, according to the rules in Covenants, as said above.

Although the above methods allow for truly huge items, they cannot be TOO complex - the compound item must have no more than Magic Theory different components. The magus would supposedly open the highest-costing one, and this too may be a nasty limit (as it may only have a capacity of up to MTx2). An extended Material and Size Table is presented in TMRE (a 10-stories tower comes out with a capacity of 28 pawns due simply to the amount of stone).

The Mystery of Hermetic Architecture (TMRE again) provides the means to circumvent both of the above limitations (IIRC), and possibly also allows the magus to work in his private (and probably improved) laboratory instead of spending time to set up an inferior one. I generally find it very complicated and annoying to work with, however, or at least to think through. It's a very byzantine way to go about enchanting the item, which is unfortunate as ArM5 is generally very streamlined and consistent.

thank you!
It is not meant to be simple to enchant huge items from the comfort of your lab, and Byzantine seems just the right adjective!

I'm sorry you think it inconsistent and non-streamlined.

It is the function of new rules to generate alternative paths - otherwise we'd just use the standard rules...
As for streamlining - should we really have made it as easy to enchant a stone circle or tower as to enchant a wand? Enchanting these structural entities is meant to be a story-worthy effort, not just background lab-work.

I can see the desire to "just get the boat ready" - well if that's really all you want, you could instead start them off in debt to a Verditius expert who made the boat for them?

The above wasn't meant to repudiate the work but rather to note that it's design philosophy was definitely not the streamlining and repetitiveness that seems to motivate the fifth edition's design. It isn't that I found it unworkable or anything, it certainly seems interesting.