I need some suggestions with a series of story's

I'll first introduce my self a bit. I'm new to game and I'm from belgium so English isn't my strongest virtue and on top of that I'm dyslectic so my grammatics and spelling aren't always optimal.
I've a history of RPG's like Vampire the requiem and Das Schwarze Auge (i think it's called the evil eye in English) and tabletop games like Warhammer and Armalion.
Me and my fellow troupe members have just started playing Ars Magica because our GM thought the magic systems of DSA were to limited, I agree with him on that point. I also decided to be a co-GM (or whatever it's called these days ^.^) to help him and give him a chance to play to. k, with that behind us I'll begin with what I wanted to ask you guys.

I want do a story about one (or more) of the Grigori (fallen angels), particularly Azazel.
I've recently saw a movie (I actually saw it before but only now came to the conclusion i can make a good story about that.) named: Fallen. In the movie you see how Azazel can move inside humans/animals by touching them, and when his host dies his spirit can also fly into another human or animal. [color=darkblue]Now one of my problems is how i can create some kind of boundary for Azazel not to touch one of the troupe members and get inside of him.

I'm going to introduce Azazel to the Magi in our next game by using one the 'bad' guys of the prologue my GM used. He was a Tytalus Magus who killed our teachers and other Magi whom where present at the small gathering by summoning a demon. The Tytalus Magus was apprehended at the end. All but us and one Magus, the teacher of our Flambeau, had died that night. Our troupe left the wizard in the hands of a Quaesitoris and left in a hurry back to our covenant.

Now comes my story:
What we didn't know was that Azazel was inside the Magus the whole time. Two years later we get a letter from Pierre (the Flambeau's teacher) that the Magus responsible for the deaths of the magi had been released because there wasn't any evidence of his betrayal. Somehow Azazel (the magus) had intercepted several messengers to us from the Quaesitoris to come froth as witnesses in court.
[color=darkblue]Here's my second problem, I don't really know how Magi convict others in court and is it the same everywhere else? When there's no evidence and no witnesses he's innocent?

I see Azazel as someone vengeful so he'll do anything to make the life of the magi and the people around them very sour. And now it's personal because we disturbed his plans in the future. He'll travel to a city near our covenant (on the border between England and Scotland) and prepare some evil. In that city there's an English courtier who hates us because we insulted him once (or something like that). Azazel will make the courtier his puppet so it'll make it harder for us it interfere with Azazel's plan.

That's everything i got at the moment. [color=darkblue]I'm still stuck with some stuff that'll make it more interesting for the troupe. What kind of enemy's should i throw at them, or what obstacles? Please tell me what you think of it and any suggestion or comments are very welcome.


You will want to change the name as Azazel is trapped in a Regio in the Holy Lands as of Ancient Magics. He is a nasty fellow.[/b]

Hmmm, k. I didn't know they had already made him in ars magica. Then I'll have to make him one of the lesser fallen Grigori and change his name.

Uffff... quite a few major issues here!!

  1. Take in mind that the princi`p'le of innocence (innicent until proven guilty) did NOTT exist in the middle ages. You were guilty unless yopu proved you were inocent! If you handled the guy to the Quaesitores, it is enoyugh for him to be summarily executed. And if not, you have already made your point of considering him to be guilty.

  2. messengers carrying such important summons to tribunakl would be Redcaps. Interfering with redcaps is an other blatant breach of the code

  3. Unless restrained, I doubt your flambeau master would avoid killing the dude outright. He can easily defend his act at tribunal.

  4. To your "touch" problem, a simple ward (circle/ring, for example) would be enough to prevent just that.

  5. For magi, it is difficult to leave no traces, since magical detectives can talk with plants, earth and the like. If there is no proof, he is innocent, but you already claimed that you had the characters and Papa FRlambeau to say that he is guilty.

If I were you, I would make him ESCAPE the prison where he was being held (and nobody knows how the magus was able to break the magical wards that imprisoned him) and then you have a rogue magus, renounced by the order but extremely dangerous and free at large to do whatever he wants. he will NOT be an hermetic magus anymore, since he is not protected by the code (renounced), bnut he is extremely dangerous and going into hiding he can become a major enemy of the characters easily.

Just some suggestions. :slight_smile: Have fun with your story



I wouldn't necessarily change the name. Differing the setting in your game from the setting in one of the suppliments is not a big deal and if magi come accross "conflicting legends" regarding the character then the confusion caused may well have a beneficial effect on the story.

A strong aegis may keep him out of the covenant.

If the flambeau teacher has become demon-phobic since his compatriots were killed he might have developed a magic item that casts a low level (2 or 3) high penetration (high enough to effect Azazel) version of demon's eternal oblivion at regular intervals (such as whenever the wearer breaths or once every two minutes) with target structure or group to defend either the covenant or a group of characters respectively. Azazel would be able to interact with the characters for short periods of time before the enchanted device begins to destroy him.

Specific wards against mentem magic with range touch could be created in sufficient numbers to protect the characters.

Crimes that are brought to tribunal are decided by popular vote. One interesting bit of hermetic law is that, as a rule, the facts of the case are never in question. The investigatory magics of Quaesitor magi are exceedingly well developed and cases are not brought to tribunal when there is still quibbling regarding the actual events. One interesting bit about hermetic magic as a whole is that it is incapable of seeing through the deceptions of the infernal. (Ergo, with no witnesses Azazel can tell whatever story he wants and rely on the Quaesitor's failure to see any falsehood in it to support his position)

Here's some thoughts on how I'd do it. It's not a recommendation as much as a look into how my mind works and the sorts of issues that I suspect you'll face.

I'd throw mysteries and political attacks at the characters as a starter because young magi tend to either get stomped by opposition or crush it like a it was a wingless fly.

Why are their villagers protesting the magi's treatment of them?

Why have nearby baron's and churchmen claimed that they've been insulted as well as the courtier.

Then, after the PC's unravel these plots and you've a got a handle on the PC's abilities and also after you all know the system a bit better, you run two separate story lines. For one story you send the PC's traveling across the world to uncover the magical secrets that they'll need to destroy their non-corporeal foe once and for all. (Look for his Nepilim descendants slumbering in an ice cave in Finland to find a sympathetic connection, his true name inscribed in an unknown language on ancient Babylonian tablets and then they'll have to investigate shipwrecks on the bottom of the Mediterranean to summon up an ancient faerie who can translate them at the cost of something extremely dear to the magi. Or whatever I'm talking about flavor here not specifics). For the second story You'll have Azazeal make very subtle moves near to the covenant (making friends with mundane people who won't be hindered by the covenant's magical defenses and showing his pawns how to remove the defenses when the time comes and getting them into the magi's lives, gathering up arcane connections to the PC magi, arranging matters so that the PC's spend their time preparing for a different threat rather than Azazeal and so on)

Then at the right time you manipulate events to bring both stories to a simultaneous close whether with a race to the McGuffin or a titanic battle between magi and demons.

Remember that you want events to unfold over the curse of years or decades if you wish to get the full joy of the incredible magic system and experience rules so don't plan in too much detail because things will change with every specific anti Azazel spell that the PC's develop and don't let your plot be revealed too quickly. save some surprises for session 20 that were foreshadowed in session 1 (I know that these to pieces of advice are mutually exclusive, that just the way that it is.)

Welcome, LordKjarl! :smiley:

L'oeil noir in french. My first RPG :smiley:

Such an ability is veeeeery close to the possession ability of most demons (In fact, it really seems to be a demon, based on what you say). As such, it would have to penetrate.

So, if your azazel's might is low enough, or if he tries to possess someone with his full might (as seems to be the case), he would be unable to possess magi, protected as they are by their Parma Magica

Your tytalus may have been possessed due to one incredibly good roll from the demon (shit happens), or because of a botch, whatever.

I respectfully disagree with a lot of the particulars of Xavi's comments. In principle, I think he is in tune with the "conventional" or "normal" way of interpreting the Ars Magica universe. Unfortunately I think that interpretation is basically bad for the story you are trying to tell. I suggest that your story is good, and it's the conventional thinking of how the Order works that needs fixing.

Certainly, I agree -- in historical Europe. In Mythic Europe, specifically in the Order of Hermes, there is room for doubt. Hermetic magic is infallible in sorting out the evidence unless there is a demon involved. Every Quaesitor knows this. But there is no way to know when a demon is involved. Therefore magic is not infallible in sorting out the facts. Therefore, nothing is "open and shut"; I think it would be irresponsible to convict anyone on a single piece of evidence. I am not aware of anything in official Ars Magica books that says Quaesitores are prone to jumping to conclusions.

Houses of Hermes: True Lineages talks about how magi handle court cases. If you do not have that book then basically what you need to know is that the case is usually heard at Tribunal. The Quaesitores are the judge and prosecutors and the rest of the magi act as the jury.

If there is no evidence, and the magus cooperates with the investigation, he can get free in my opinion. Imagine Azazel-inside-magus says "Yes honored Quaesitor, cast any spells you want on me, read my mind, I can tell you truly I was quietly sitting in my lab reading a book at the time." Certainly in this case that is false evidence, but it is all the Tribunal has to go on... There are ways for a clever and experienced Quaesitor to thwart a demon, but if he is not on his toes, he could easily get the wrong idea.

Only if they knew they were being interfered with, and by whom. Disguise of the New Visage is only Level 15.

More later...

From xavi:

The redcap's them selfs are unaware of this, they think they've given the message to the PC's covenant, but instead of that they gave it to one of Azazel's allies.

From Erik Tyrrell:

I can work with this. I'll let him make up a story to win some time for his escape. Denying anything the Flambeau master throws at him and make up something totally false. And after the vote, that'll be a draw. He vanishes from his holding cell that same night.

They'll need to go to Dudael in upper Egypt, because there was his prison created by God. If they're smart enough they can find it very fast by just opening some religious books like the bible, or one of the Enochs or the book of Abraham.

From The Fixer:

I like it more that he volunteered for it, with the promise of great power and other demonic lies that Azazel promised.

From Andrew Gronosky:

There was a summoned Demon, whom sliced himself through several Magi, so the Quarsitor would probably think it was because of him that they can't see what happened. yes? They have no reason to expect that the Magus is possessed by an Fallen Angel because they have a perfectly clear explanation for it.

Yes. I like the way you think. :smiling_imp: Since a demon killed several magi, I do think the Quaesitor and the whole Tribunal would take this matter very seriously.

Also, I will add that the Limit of Essential Nature does not mean all demons are 100% immune to all Intellego magic. What it does mean is that it is possible for a specific demon to have a specific power that cannot be detected by magic. That, alone, is enough to throw a whole lot of uncertainty into the investigation. :smiling_imp:

Hi and welcome LordKjarl.
I would not worry about the trial of the Tytalus. Here are some suggestions:
1.) He escaped mysteriously
2.) Azazel left his (now useless) body and mind before the trial
3.) Azazel left when the Tytalus was executed
4.) Azazel managed to reanimate the dead Tytalus' body into a kind of zombie
5.) Azales faked the magus' demise in front of the whole tribunal! Remember, creo-imaginem effects do not need to penetrate...
Maybe you will come up with more ideas .

Now, I know that this is a sidenote to the original thread, but remember that medieval justice wasn't nearly as primitive as we often make it out to be. While the above statements are superficially true, they don't really give an accurate picture by just describing the average medieval system of justice as a system whose defining characteristic is a reversal of the burden of proof. (N.B. I'm not implying that above posters are making that point, but I'll clarify nonetheless)

Without going into it at greater length, suffice to say that the medieval judicial mind would be better described by the term 'different' than by 'cruder' when compared to our contemporary systems. While the premise of the average medieval court would indeed be that the accused was guilty and a measure of certainty on the issue was what the court wanted to reach, getting there was proportionally harder.

For instance, I would dare to venture that no medieval court would convict an accused person without an eye-whitness (read: an eye-witness in good standing in the eyes of the court!) to corroborate that said deed was done.

I've elaborated a bit on the issue here if you're interested.

That's interesting indeed, but I don't think the Magi would enforce the same tactics as the Catholic Church. Because they don't have to worry about where their soul is going after they die, it'll go without a doubt into the Twilight.
But I like the way they did it then, and will probably use that later on in the game to punish a companion or grog.

I'll let the Magus escape after the tribunal voted, because of the lack of evidence and a made up story from Azazel the votes are 10 for guilty and 10 not guilty. The PC's weren't there because they didn't know the trail had started.

I always say to my (ArM-read) players that their SPIRITS go to the magic realm. Soul stays in the heaven-earth area, so they SHOULD worry :wink: "I am a mage so I can be a mass murder and escape afterlife punishment" does not fly IMS :slight_smile: That that it matters much, but this has caused some interesting post-game discussions in my group.