Magical Memory: Worth a Slot?

I was considering the Minor Hermetic Virtue Magical Memory (main rulebook, p. 45). From the name alone, it seems like it would fit my character, as she's descended from a lineage that's heavily into oral tradition. But, upon closer examination, I find myself at a loss as to when this Virtue would ever come into play, outside of a campaign in which, say, you're forced to evacuate your covenant and have to set up a new covenant with no access to book or lab texts.

I had thought of a couple of possibilities, but discarded them. To wit:

  • If you help another magus in the lab inventing a spell or enchanting a device, you might be in a way creating (or helping the primary magus) create a lab text, which you could then remember and use. This seems a little too munchkin-y to me.
  • Perhaps the act of copying laboratory texts might qualify, but a rereading of what laboratory texts can do, that seems to be right out.

So. Little help here. Are there situations in which Magical Memory would actually be useful, or is it a wasted Virtue slot?

It would help if your lab was destroyed or you lost access to your lab notes by some other means. It also means that the lab notes you create are redundant from the get go so there is no reason mot to sell them ASAP.

I doubt that its worth it.

I'd say definitely not. It's extremely weak for a minor virtue.

If you're looking for a minor houserule to make it worthwhile, consider allowing the memorisation of lab texts using the same rules as copying them, but replacing Profession:Scribe with Concentration.

It makes it actually a useful virtue, if you can get a season's access to a large set of lab texts, but not (imo) an overpowered one, as it simply saves you skillpoints on Profession:Scribe in exchange for only being able to use those lab texts for yourself rather than others.

I'd also consider adding some sort of rule about being able to teach lab texts within the tradition.

I could see this virtue being very useful for a pereginatores who don't settle in a covenant, but the virtue is more of a flavor enhancement.

As written, it's virtually worthless, even the secondary benefit of not needing the lab text after creating an effect from another magus's lab text doesn't make sense, because it's presumed that when any magus makes a spell or an item that they are also creating a lab text as they work. So, basically the secondary benefit is the same as the primary benefit, and the primary benefit is, as you've outlined, weak.

The other skill that could be houseruled for this would be the Memory Palace(?) skill, in TMRE. For example, I've used the "integrated Breakthorugh Points can create convenient houserules" idea to create a spell that allows you to use (Ability + Memory Palace + Int) to remember something, rather than simply ((Ability OR Memory Palance) + Int.)

It's called "Art of Memory" in Mysteries, Revised Edition.

Pretty much it only seems likely to come into play if either the character/player or the troupe go out of their way to make it come into play.

You firstly need to have a use for your own Lab Texts, so you want to do things more than once in the Lab. So, it is not of much use for Lab Texts for spells, because once you have learnt a spell you do not need to learn it again. It is only of value for item Lab Texts.

Then you need to have a reason why your Lab Texts might not (always) be available. This could be a story reason, such as often travelling, Lab destroyed, etc. Or could be something to do with the nature of your Laboratory/familiar/location. It might be difficult to keep Lab Texts if you have a laboratory "feature" related to Ignem, for example.

So, I think it is worth it, if you design parts of the character/saga around it, but it's not much use for a "typical" magus in a "typical" saga.

You're lab texts aren't being corrupted by demons? Well someone has been slacking.

I don't think it's too munchkiny to let the magus with this Virtue reproduce a lab activity in which he assisted.

I would allow that. I might be messing up with different virtues here, but if this is what I think it is (you remember pretty much everything) it can be really useful.

Magical memory for me is more of a background thing, though. Pretty much like being a gentleman: you get certain advantages as default, no roll involved. You get to recall every letter you have ever read, and can easily remember a scene, so you can ask the storyguide for details on a scene that happened 2 months ago at the table and he should answer you truthfully. That kind of thing. You just remember things. Magical memory and common sense are 2 amazing virtues for a troupe, specially if they hate note-taking. You can be a nomenclator without problems, since you remember everybody as well. You are a living repository of knowledge of stuff you have experienced first hand.

It's also useful if you want to make sure your work isn't stolen (paranoid sagas) or revealed (diabolist sagas). :wink:

And usefull if have the RoP:M Virtue Extractor of (Form) Vis, or Core rules book Study bonusor Study requirement. The Magical Memory is usefull if you are very "seized" by superiors on the Covenant or your House.
Another point, some Ex Myscellanea or Magi with Intelligence or Ability Block (Academic) could be usefull.

I'm afraid you are "messing up with different virtues." Magical Memory does not let you "remember pretty much everything." You're thinking of the Art of Memory ability from Mysteries Revised. Magical Memory's entire text is:

Emphasis added. And that's it.