Interesting magical focuses, minor and major

Hello folks.

Don't worry, this isn't going to be about swords, wands or any of the usual focus stuff.

I'd like you to share the focuses/potent magics that you have used or seen. This could be a handy resource for character gen or to provoke discussion. I'll start.

Major potent magic - blood. Some crafty spells to solidify and mould blood, remove it from people, fire it at great pressure, etc. Benefits from some powerful form/shape bonuses such as rubies.

Shadow and darkness - minor magical focus. Not as useful as I thought it would be. Suited the spooky criamon it belonged to though.

From the top of myu head, in recent sagas we have seen Minor focuses in:

  • Wolves
  • Salt water
  • Oak
  • Passions
  • Spirits of pagan religions. This was interesting. It mostly dealt with spirits of the long dead, like Roman and greek spirits, but it could also be used for heathen spirits linked with the Norse, greek or roman pantheons. It was cool to use it on geni loci, for example.

Major focuses are not popular around here.

Major here on Fire, i was helping on gfriend to make one Ignem Flambeau Expert, a little munchkinsm, but it's better than just pick the literal example magi from the book. And he chose one of the best stories, he is one Hulk/Rage fiery fire wizard (Fury) and one cloudy (more smokey actually) past.
Other it's on considetration, my player more interested on magic beings, so we are thinking over Mythical beings, i told him than just that is Major, so i explained than better Chimaeras, unestrstand it like magical and faerie beasts with parts of two or more animal or simply mixed forms (less than any creature focus), and to make taht kind of changes on others beings (MuAn).
And one Hermetic Sahir on the group, so Jinns too.

To me, Necromancy and Vermin are some of my more interested. I think than Create Vermin can be minor, but cool too.

Let's see, my first magus (4th edition) was focused in Vital Forces which was kind of nebulous and didn't see a lot of use, but he was Criamon so it didn't really matter. My second magus was a Verditus with a Focus in sculpture (4th and later 5th edition), which was a lot more fun, as he turned statues into animals and made lots of fun enchanted devices. My third (favorite) magus was a Mercere focused in Craft Magic, which really only works well if you take a LOT of Finesse related virtues (Puissant, Affinity, Cautious With and Independent Learner so he could practice and get 9xp a season). If I had to build him again I'd take Flawless Magic for more Finesse Mastery, because Craft Magic ain't easy (oh, and Mutantum Magic is really good too, but that's off topic). My current magus is another Mercere (Mercurian Creo Specialist) with a Focus in Vine Plants, which makes his Trap of the Entwining Vines pretty powerful. He lives in a giant bottle gourd and has a spell to dump tons of grapes upon his enemies. In our current campaign one magus has Major Focus in Spirits, another in Stone, another in Certamen (those Tremere...).

I've also run several sagas in-between playing. One NPC magus has a Focus in Size Changes, another with Flames. I don't always pick foci for NPC magi, nor do I necessarily fill them out with 10 points of virtues and flaws, though I think in the future I'll try to always include one; magi should be good at something.

Other PC magi concepts have included Foci in Dispelling (be warned a Flawless Magic PeVi specialist is SCARY) and Weather. A couple of our players seem to avoid taking Foci because often nothing fires their imagination.

Other PC concepts I've noodled with include Ossomancy (bone magic - on a Gentle Gifted Jerbiton no less), and Rope, which would be totally devastating in port cities and on the high seas.

You might want to rename that 'worms', which according to Art and Academe can be 'created' with Rego magic (as matter naturally turns into worms). Worms doesn't just refer to earthworms, either, as mice, insects, frogs and eels as well as parasites of all kinds are worms. It's almost certainly a major focus, however (given mammals and birds are Major Foci as well).

Bees. Great (minor) focus!
Music. A minor focus (a specific type of sound) that was really hard, yet really interesting, to leverage.
13. Yes, that's "thirteen". A Major focus. We were worried it would be overpowered, but in a very subtle way it did not turn out to be - though maybe it was just the player.

Yes just that, Major just like birds and mammals right. But just the Rego Animal effect to create them to me is Minor.


I've just created a storyguide character with a Minor Magical Focus of 'Reflections'. He's a Verditius obsessed with mirrors.


I had a mage w/ Mythic Blood: Merovingian Magical Kings, who took a Focus in "bloodlines" (altho' it was defined more complexly than just that). He was of an Ex Misc tradition who only too others of that bloodline as their apprentices, and so used it to track down others of the same bloodline (and occasionally determine parentage/lineage of others as well), whether living or dead. Wouldn't help in designing "Whispers thru the Black Gate" (unless limited to that), but it would help in spont'ing that effect if it was involving a known bloodline, or to determine same.

Another had "Knowledge of Human Condition", which allowed InCo, InMe and InVi (re The Gift, etc.) to ID aspects of a human (not just any "Corpus") broadly within that scope. Handy for finding apprentices and ID'ing magic users of all sorts, but also perceiving the health (physical and mental) of any target, and locating people ("location" was part of Focus' definition as a part of "human condition").

I had a Finnish recent ex-misc convert "ice mage" who had a Major Focus in "snow and ice", who was in a Covenant high in the Alpine Tribunal. Had a lot of fun with him too.

Tricky to make that one work. You could use ReIm to steal the reflections from one mirror to bring it to another, or use the reflected light of the sun off of a lake to blind people.

(also echoes, and possibly vibrations, depending, altho' finding utility in such starts to get challenging.)

Would 'using tunneling spells' (those ReVi thingies that shoprten diustances to touch) be minor ot major?

I'm tinkering around with a mute magus that can't use voice range at all.

Minor - since it has nothing to do with the spells that will be cast down those tunnels. :wink:

As a very limited facet of ReVi, it could even go a bit broader if you wanted.

I think that sounds almost too narrow. Pehapes a minor focus in Connections or Bridges.

Ah, I see, I expressed myself the wrong way.

If this focus was also supposed to affect all spells used through such a tunnel, would it still be minor?

Performance Magic could be your friend. But arguably it would be easier/quicker to develop Sight ranged versions of most Voice ranged spells than have to cast 2 spells to get one effect. That and a long talisman, like an animated rope/chain to extend your Touch range.

What I have seen used by myself and others...
Major: Fire, Weather, Spirits, Necromancy, Destruction, Armaments
Minor: Creating Fire, Fire Casting, Light, Dark,
I forget the category: Healing, Vision, Steel

No, that would be exceedingly major, around 11 virtue points or so.
Or in other words: NO!

EDIT: Technically, that would be more than 30 virtue points (wider than 10 major virtues), my bad.

Since "Minor" is defined as "slightly narrower than a single Tech + Form combination", and a tunnel allows any and every TeFo combo to be cast down it (dependant only on Range:Touch)... you tell us. :wink:

Which suggests that you think it's a Major Magical Focus... And I generally believe that it isn't a legitimate focus at all.