Lungs of the Fish: Why Bother?

I'm looking at a maga who may have to spend considerable time underwater soon. I'm looking at her magical abilities, and I believe I've come up with a much easier (for her) way to handle the whole "I'd rather not drown today, thank you very much" problem.

She's stronger in Corpus than in Aquam. Looking at the Muto Corpus guidelines, I see Base 2: Change someone to give them a minor ability. But nothing corresponding to a "major" ability. The next step up (base 3) utterly changes someone's size or appearance, and I'm thinking that's more than what we're looking for.

I'm looking at Base 2, "allows the target to breathe underwater." If I give it R: Touch (+1), R: Sun (+2), T: Individual, that gives me a final spell level of 5.

Compare that to Lungs of the Fish, MuAq(Au) 20, on p. 122.

Even if I give my spell Aq or Au requisites, as I understand it that wouldn't add any magnitudes because it "simply allows the spell to have its effect" and doesn't "add an effect to a spell," (although this seems to fall into a grey area, on p. 114).

I'm looking at a MuCo 5 (or, at worst, a MuCo(Aq) 10) vs. a MuAq(Au) 20 to achieve the same ends.

Am I totally missing something here?

Can you say Legacy Spell? :slight_smile:

Breath water might need a base 3 IMS. But appart from that, I would allow it. In fact I think that i have allowed it already. We had an elementalist in our last saga (specialized in salt water and dpoing funky stuff with them, like boiling ships) that used to spend half his time underwater with the tritons. IIRC he developed gills. Level 5 IIRC since it was a personal spell.

Still, with the lungs of the fish you look more normal to the casual onlooker if you leave the water :slight_smile:


As someone that plays a MAgic blooded Mage (Magical animal - shark, special ability being breath water and has gills), the gills are definately a give away that Muto Corpos looks a lot odder than Lungs of the Fish.

Of course if you don't mind walking around with gills, MuCo at will.

We allow the Base 2 MuCo guideline "Change someone to give them a minor ability" to allow the target to breath underwater as a fish. We do not see it as really more significant than being able to see in the dark -- in the modern world full of artificial light, it's easy to underestimate the dark.

We argued a little about whether this would change the target's appearance giving them gills, but there are examples of "water breathing" animals without visible gills, and the role of gills in breathing was controversial in antiquity and the middle ages. So no need for visible gills. Besides, it would take a really, really low MuIm spell to disguise them.

We also thought about allowing someone with "MuCo water-breathing" to only allow breathing water. However, there are many examples of animal that can breathe both water and air at the same time, so we scrapped this limitation too.

The big deal about changing water into air is that you can then speak intelligibly underwater; with just the MuCo spell we burden the caster with a -5 penalty and three extra botch dice (unless he chooses to cast the spell silently). Of course giving orders to your grogs by voice is also almost impossible.

Finally, if you think that water-breathing is not a "minor ability", how about something that allows one to hold one's breath for a really long time?

Maybe the references should be Muto Animal, with one magnitud or level less, i think.
Maybe, the anphibian skin could be better minor ability that the gills.

Dunno if it is RAW (no books to check) but I thought eyes of the cat allowed you to see in very low light. Total darkness is base 3 IMS. the fact that an animal possessed an ability does not make it "minor" for a human. Total darness sight would be "2 levels up in perception", not only 1 like eyes of the cat :slight_smile:


Also, always bear in mind that there are multiple ways to skin a cat. If you magus is a corpus/animal expert, then gills are the way forward (or turning into a fish for added mobility). If you are an aquam/auram expert, then lungs of the fish is superior.

It all depends on what your magus is good at as to which is most useful.

This. Always understand and remember this.

Absolutely, you get to see in the dark as an owl or other "night beast". What I was trying to say is that it's really hard for us today, unless we have spent time in the wilderness at night, to fully appreciate how significant it's the ability to see in the dark of the night in a "medieval" setting.