learning magic theory via practise

Can you learn Magic theory via the rules for practise if you are studying under a magus working in the laboratory?

Normally it is allowed for someone to practise a profession in a season and have someone learn from them via practise in that season, does this rule allow people like apprentices and familiars to learn magic theory from their magus when said magus is working on a lab-project?

We crunched some math on this and as a troupe decided not to allow this.
Basically, it's hard enough already justify apprentices getting only 240 XPs in 15 years as it is.

Thats really good to know, thank you.

Why did you decide that it is necessary to justify apprentices only getting 240 XP's in 15 years? I am not opposed to the decision just curious.

Are you talking about Training?

Practice itself isn't really worthwhile. You get so much more out of a season in the lab while applying 2 experience to Magic Theory via exposure. Sure, Magic Theory is only advancing at half the rate, but most people would consider a new spell or similar more than worth the cost of 2 experience.

Similarly, as a parens, it would be better to have the apprentice set up a second lab and use it to fix arcane connections or distill vis or something else to gain exposure to Magic Theory.

I am indeed talking about training. Because I am curious if I can teach my familiar (and later my apprentice) Magic theory while they help me in the lab.

Detailed Character Creation, ArM5, p. 28ff, more specifically the 'apprenticeship' element (p. 32), indicate that apprentices gather a total of 240 XPs and 120 spell levels during the 15 years of apprenticeship.
We set up some apprentices and went through extremely detailed character creation (they were essentially secondary PCs). They ... came out of Apprenticeship almost as powerful as our main characters.

We spent a lot of energy playtesting at the time and the more ... numbers-aware of us wanted to see how good the basic assumptions of the core book were. We had trouble keeping apprentice XPs down to expected levels, unless the Parens' Communications score was negative and apprentices were limited to exposure for 3 seasons out of the year.

I can, however, recommend spending time teaching Magic Theory to your familiar if you have lab-based ambitions.

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Do you mean that the apprentices you made using the detailed method were equal in power to their masters or that they simply significantly ahead of the curve?

Do you have numbers on their accumulated XP and spell levels of those apprentices?

The logical conclusion of your studies is that unless you have patched the RAW then when you generate apprentices in play they always end up overpowered compared to the suggestions in the core book or you have to always make characters with negative communication who have their apprentices do work that only gives exposure xp for 3 seasons a year.
How do you solve this in play? Have you decided that apprentices just gain the base xp and spell levels regardless of what the advancement rules for detailed play would say or have you made some other change? Have you decided to accept that apprentices generated in play are much more powerful than base characters?

The details are written out in Apprentices.

This was before we even got involved with playtesting Apprentices IIRC.
I don't remember if the numbers in Apprentices came from us, but I don't think so.

Almost as powerful as their masters. IIRC.
Certainly closer to their masters (some 20-30 years out of Gauntlet) in power than to the character creation assumptions.

Sadly no. this was ... maybe a decade ago, and at least 2 computer crashes.
Maybe @Christian_Andersen still have them?

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There was a thread back in 09' or so I think about a character's conversion from ArM3 over to ArM5 and the OP after a brief discussion decided to do the detailed character's generation method from his apprentiship years. He admittedly had his character pretty optimized but, otherwise, only using the Core book & he ended with just over 1080 exp for his 15 years of apprentiship.

Now, I'm going mostly from memory here, but it should be pretty accurate nonetheless.

I have a character who uses training to teach their apprentice Magic Theory. I do it to slow the apprentice’s rate of advancement and count it as the character’s season of one on one instruction. My character with an apprentice has a Teaching SQ of 23.

I get that you might want to claim training as a season of instruction for your apprentice but why are you trying to slow down your apprentice's advancement?

That number feel familiar somehow.

Still has what?
We’re talking apprentices who had too good resources and consequently ended up with way more exp than the standard magus design rules.
Which saga? I have lots of old stuff.

As I remember the problem it was not so much with the single season of teaching per year ( although a Com +5 Good Teacher, Teaching 6+ Parens upsets the balance) but the 3 seasons of study in a great library a too generous magus allows the apprentice, instead of using them as lab assistants or scribes.

the back-of-the-envelope calculations about apprentices.
I think it was back in Silkeborgsøerne - don't remember the name of the saga.

Yeah. Every season the apprentice gets more than 2 XPs, compounds the problem.

IMO - Magi start the game out vastly under-powered for how the seasonal simulation rules work. I also ran a blatantly OP game that had extremely powerful apprentices. Nothing fell apart, and honestly, my players had more fun.

In my game, I gave OBSCENE amounts of xp to my troupe - BUT I gave them a stablock they acquired through their apprenticeship, as well as generous xp from their masters. In most games and as implied by RAW, this would is munchkin levels of XP.

The setting is a group of masters discovered a powerful temple of minerva - hiding the hibernating God, who initiated them into her mysteries of teaching and learning.

All of the PC's Masters (after mystery cult initiations had)
Base +9, Com +5, Good Teacher +5. Teach 16 (Apprentice), Puissant Teach +2, Teaching Lab Specailty +3, Student with Apt Student +5 = +46 xp per season with master.

They then also received in class training in mundane and arcane lores for +40xp.

Two seasons of exposure doing scutwork or labwork for +4 xp.

So each master taught at least 1, sometimes 2 seasons per year.

Each student received ~90xp per year.

They were also assumed to have been trained before starting their apprenticeship.

They graduated their apprenticeships with:

Artes Liberals 3
Athletics 3
Awareness 3
Area Lore (Covenant) 3
Area Lore (Provence) 3
Areal Lore (Roman Empire) 3
Brawl 1
Civil and Canon Law 3
Code of Hermes 3
Concentration 4
Dominion Lore 3
Etiquette 3
Faerie Lore 3
Finess 4
Infernal Lore 3
Latin 6
Magic Lore 3
Magic Theory 6
Organisation Lore (OoH) 3
Parma Magica 1
Penetration 4
Philosophae 3
Profession: Scribe 3
Stealth 3
Teach 5

The apprentice learned from their own master: Opening Arts (1s)
5 Seasons Arts (230xp) - maximum of 10 in any art including affinities or puissant so the PCs were not over specailized - and also that their own masters didn't reliably have art scores higher than that.
3 Seasons of variable learning depending on house - PCs could learn a hermetic virtue, extra arts, or some other instruction
5 seasons of spells (250 lvls)

+60xp from exposure into wherever they wanted across: Scribe, Magic Theory, OoH Lore, or Latin. Everyone put their XP into Magic Theory.

So since spell levels weren't higher than 30, nothing was too crazy right out of the gate.


My personal preference would have been slightly more powerful magi at Gauntlet and a slightly slower rate of improvement post-Gauntlet. But it's no biggie.

I could just go back to playing an older edition after all. Assuming I could find players willing to play.*

'* Hey, it's worked with AD&D 2e, so why not?


Why do I want to optimize my apprentice’s development? I want to wring value from her.

Also for background a Mercere with illegitimate lineage forced to take an apprentice while he was young, started at 12 years PG. He doesn’t have all that much to teach. Spreading what he can teach over the entire apprenticeship is a big deal. And my apprentice doesn’t need to end the apprenticeship with a Magic Theory score of 6

There seems to be a lot of focus on optimizing the apprentice, when magi should optimize the benefits of having an apprentice.

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That's exactly why we were teaching Magic Theory. We even talked about using CrMe rituals to improve their Intelligence and/or Communication.

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Optimizing the time is not necessarily optimizing a lab total. Quite often the (max 10 being generous) that the apprentice can provide is not that much a of a deal breaker.

What can be a great timsaver is all the tedious fixing of arcane connections/ copying books for trade that you need done simultaneously. Also low level enchantments to make your life better after they have gone are so much better done by not you.