Making munchkin talisman

I am certain the topic has been covered but I did not see it and have a poor search ability.

Let me just make an example. Take a oak wand. Now say your Magic theory is a lowly two. You want to put a band of gold around the oak wand as the second component, and you enchant this weak first attempt of a talisman with the oak wand and the gold band in the shape of a crown around the handle.

Now obviously you get the component benefit of it being a gold band, as well as the wood wand.

My question is do you get ALL of the benefits? Do you get the benefit of the wand being oak? Do you get the benefit of it being dead wood? Do you get the benefit of the gold being in the shape of a crown?

Can a mage enchanting a single oak and with a gold band, get the many benefits of the shape and materials that encompass every feature of the new talisman? Or are you limited by your magic theory to just TWO aspects of the talisman and as such you have to choose do you want the wand benefit, the oak benefit, the dead wood benefit? Do you only get the gold benefit? Or can you get a crown benefit if the gold is made in such a fashion?

To my way of thinking, I would say a imaginative sorcerer who gets pretty creative, say shaping the wand to have the tip carved to be the head of a fish, and the gold band to be the shape of a crown, should be able to get all of the bonuses.

I ask because I am making a talisman for my pirate Mercere magus, a cloak made of ship's sail, netting, rope, and snake skin, with the skull of a rat woven into the garment as well as a stone of topaz and three slivers of a broken oakwood ship's oar.

Now the magic theory at the time of the enchanting will be maybe a 5 unless I hold off another season or so and get a Magic Theory of 6. Now after enchanting this entire garment, can I make the claim that a cloak made of these fabrics count as the following shape and materials? Clothing, cloak, ship sail, netting, rope, animal skin, and snake tongue? Say you stitched it all together with hair from a lion's mane. Can you state that ALL of these items are but a single feature of enchanting? So that with a magic theory of 5, you have 4 more items which you can add.

Say you add the rat skull. Can you count the skull as both a rat skull for a bonus to disease.... as well as a animal bone to give monus to harming or controlling animals?

With the splinter or shard of a old oak oar, can you get the bonuses of a oar, as well as dead wood, and oak?

If you take the topaz and have it carved by a jeweler, into the shape of either a sea shell or a swan feather, or perhaps just have the jewel etched with one of these images, do you then get both the bonus of a topaz gem and a sea shell?

I know this is a long post but I have never been inspired to make such a unique and complicate Talisman before ((the only other Talisman I made was to use as a sacrifice for a Inscription on the Soul Talisman... so it wasn't that important))

Anyhow thanks for responses!

Well, since you have to open the most expensive component of an object before you can enchant it as a talisman, that would be the gold band.
10 pawns (or 20, depending on size) - so not without MT 5+

Note, that - unless you have very specific virtues like TMRE p. 89f Great Talisman - you can only open your talisman for a material or form based magic attunement bonus by preparing it for enchantment or instilling effects into it. And for each such season you get only one magic attunement bonus.
So the attunement bonuses for a talisman are normally just useful perks for working on it in the lab, and you get them slowly. Having a talisman with many potential bonuses to later open it for does not look very munchkin to me.

:sunglasses: If you want to go really munchkin about attunements, try to convince your SG and troupe to give your talisman several attunements for a season used to instill several small enchantments into it. :sunglasses:


Sounds like two ideas are being mixed together.

  1. First you have to be able to open the item yourself. There are three ways to do this. One is to open only a part of it. (I assume this is what you mean to do.) Another is to open the whole thing using the most expensive single piece. The last is to open the whole thing using the total of all the pieces. I believe in every case you are limited to Magic Theory pieces.

  2. If you open only a part of an object, you get only the Shape Bonus, not the Material Bonus, it is part of. So, for example, you could open a wooden pommel on the end of a sword. You would get the bonus for the wooden pommel as normal. The sword would provide you with the bonus for swords but not for iron (or whatever metal). I'm not sure this works the other way, though, and so I'm not sure the gold would be relevant at all in this case.


If you open

Let's take this example.

The pommel is dead wood, it is also made of oak. By the shape and materials list these are two separate entries. They each get a couple of attunement bonuses, I forget what they are right now, something like the oak gets a bonus for storms or something and the dead wood gets a bonus for affecting plants.

Now does the wood pommel count as a SINGLE feature of your talisman, a number of items limited by your magic theory score, or do you the magus have to choose which type of item it is... ie do you have to choose if it is oak and take those bonuses or you decide it is dead wood and take those bonuses ((yes I know you have to attune them later in a different season))

So either the wood pommel is a single item when adding up how many you can have according to your magic theory, and you can use it for a oak feature or a dead wood feature...


The oak wood pommel would need to be counted as two SEPARATE items when adding up according to your magic theory, if you want to use the bonuses for oak and the bonuses for dead wood.

In my example for my own magus.... if he makes a cloak out of boat sail and uses netting and rope and snake skins, all stitched together with hair from a lion's mane, the can I incorporate ALL of those things as a single feature called a cloak and count them as a single item and yet get the dozen different bonuses for them all.... OR when they are enchanted do they have to be counted as separate individual items if you want their bonuses. ((YES the bonuses to be attuned later in each individual season))

Can you game the system and munchkin the Talisman by calling a rat skull both a rat skull and a animal bone, for the sake of getting attunement bonuses later?

Yeah eventually I will be moving on to a greater Talisman, but for now the question is, with ALL of the components stitched together into a single item that looks like a cloak, can you call the cloak a SINGLE ITEM in regards to the limit of components you are allowed to have according to your level of Magic Theory, OR do you have to count the ship sail separate even though it is used as a cloak, as well as having to call the thread used to stitch the ship sail cloak which happens to be hair from a lion's mane, a separate component.

Basically if you have a cloak, made from a ship's sail and rope and netting, and it is all stitched as a cloak would be stitched, with the hair from a lion's mane, and then you want to get the future attunement bonuses of ALL of the components that you used to make the cloak, then do you need to call this cloak a SINGLE component or do you have to enchant it as though ALL of the fabrics and threads are separate components if you want the bonus?

Another way to say it is... you have a ruby. You have the ruby cut into a shape of say a sea shell or a doorway or some other shape bonus. When you enchant this item into your talisman, do you have to consider it a single component in the list of components limited by your Magic Theory? Or if you attempt to get the attunement bonus of both a ruby and a sea shell, then do you have to enchant it as if the ruby cut into the shape of a sea shell is TWO separate components which then further limits the number of components you can put in your talisman based on your magic theory.

I thought this was something everyone would be doing in their sagas. It is certainly quite common around here for young magi to do. Down to level 2 and level 3 spells, really. When you are young is when those early bonuses make a difference in your casting total.

Magic Theory 5 seems exactly the right amount of Theory to use 10 pawns of vis... what did I miss? :blush:

SShhhhhh....... I intended to put in about four spells a season. Though of course I didn't think to try and argue that each spell could allow for an attunement!

RAW is 1/season working on it. So 3 different effects instilled in 1 seasons provides 1 attunement. Or 1 effected instilled over 2 seasons provides 2 attunements.


That's a well put question now.
ArM p.97 considers the wood shaped into a staff as one component of an item. Hence also the ruby shaped like a sea shell is one component. And you cannot prepare a compound item with more components than your Magic Theory.
If your talisman has now a ruby shaped like a sea shell as a component, it can - after some lab work on it - provide bonuses both for Sea Shell (certainly +2 the sea, +3 sea creatures) and for Ruby (at least +3 affect blood, +4 leadership in war, +6 fire related effect). So that is at least five potential bonuses for one component 'using up' one point of Magic Theory.

BTW: did you notice, that talisman attunement bonuses apply to casting totals? That is, they apply after division for spontaneous casting, or for rotes! Given that on each occasion you can apply only one of them, IMO that is about the only feature making bookkeeping about most attunement bonuses worthwhile.


Nice!!! Actually I did forget until you said so that they are post division bonuses.

Also, that is truly great that others agree that you can get many substance and form component bonuses from a single component with many features. Thanks so much for lending a hand with this idea. :smiley:

Working on the Talisman really is less about having a talisman than it is the Magic Lore discovery by my magus of another level of his Hyperborean ancestry. During the making of his Talisman he will have the idea to re-birth the worship of Apollo as a mystery cult and to found the cult on Hyperborean wisdom and even their magic if he can learn it and revive it himself.

HAH! So the Talisman is basically busy work to be inspired to start a cult. But a feature of the cult will be the Greater Talisman virtue and as such my magus will need a Ordeal and so sacrificing his Talisman will be a pretty good start.

MT 5 (or more for a small band - if the band is large enough to require 20 pawns, MT (or more) is needed.
And all that was because of

...which I thought I had included :blush:

Now, if the question was "can a single object qualify for multiple entires in the S&M table? ie. is dead oak both oak and dead wood - possibly even a wand?" The answer is yes.

I'm not certain that is the intended read of the rules.

I can see that the last paragraph in the Talisman Attunement section (ArM5, page 98) talks about the bonus being "applied" to Casting Totals (note it says applied not added). However, the preceding paragraph talks about Attunments provided a "bonus on rolls with spells". Note: a bonus to the roll.

So my read is that they do apply to Casting Totals, but are treated as bonuses to the roll. Which makes no difference to Formulaic and Ritual magic --- a bonus added to the roll is a bonus added to the total for such casting. However, the Stress Die roll for Fatiguing Spontaneous Magic (ArM5, page 81) is within the part that is divided. So, if the bonus is added to the die it should get divided too.

Technically, because there is no roll with non-Fatiguing Spontaneous Magic it seems that RAW is that Attunements shouldn't apply at all to non-Fatiguing Spontaneous Magic.

Hi Richard,

I have no tool to determine the intent of a text's author, of course.

On p. 98, we indeed find a statement:
"For instance, a magus can enhance his staff talisman by attuning it to spells that control things at a distance. He then gets a +4 bonus on rolls with spells that control things at a distance (because that is the bonus listed on the Shape and Material Bonuses table)."
And we have a statement in another paragraph:
"Bonuses from attunements only apply when the magus is touching the talisman, and only the highest bonus applies. They apply to totals to cast Ritual, Formulaic and Spontaneous magic, but they do not apply to Magic Resistance or any laboratory activities." (Underscores mine in both quotations, as usual.)
So you wish to make something stated as an instance into an exclusive rule, while I read "applying bonuses" as "adding them" - which for numerical bonuses is standard usage. It is also unnecessary to state, that a bonus does "not apply to Magic Resistance", if it was clarified before that it adds only to rolls, isn't it?

Of course, an author has ways to get errata done in, and can judge whether some are in order. Care to do so?


(EDIT: A simple erratum could just replace "totals" in "They apply to totals to cast ..." with "scores", referring to ArM5 p.81.) (Another EDIT: replaced "tautological" to accommodate Portianitor.)

One Shot said tautological.... (( and I wander off chortling like he said a bad word )) :laughing: :laughing: :laughing:

OK, "tautological"=>"unnecessary". :slight_smile:

Correct. Botch in memory roll. What I meant was multiple lab activities. Making minor items during the early stages of the covenant (and magi!). Use 1 to 3 spare points to invest in your talisman. I am quite sure that is not a HR of ours.

And this is why i separate between Casting Total and Final Casting Total(after divide or any other changes)...

To be utterly precise, the difference is between Casting Score - before die roll and type specific adjustments, and before division for spontaneous magic - and Casting Total after all this. Cf. ArM5 p.81.

To achieve roughly what Richard would like to see, one needs only to exchange "total" with "score" in the text on p.98 "They apply to totals ..." - as I mentioned in my post above.