Merinita spells and the spell-timing mystery

Did someone experiment with the merinita's mystery spell timing ?
I'm currently creating a merinita follower of Pendule with spell-timing. There is so much to do with theses Ranges/Durations/Targets but sadly no exemples.

Did someone had them in a game ?

Do you have some examples of spells with this mystery ?

Well, for the lack of answers i'll take it as no one really give them a try.
I'm currently doing some examples spells. Here's one somewhat classical example:

Curse of the Prowling Beast
Muto Corpus (Req: Animal, Mentem) lvl 50 (Ritual)
R: Touch, D: Midday/Midnight, T: Individual

This spell is the classic Werewolf curse, it changes the target each night at midnight into a wolf (body and mind) until dawn. The spell is recast automatically each day.

(B:10, +1 Touch, +2 Midday/Midnight, +4 Recurring daily, +1 Mentem req)

A simple question that could be important
Is this spell is recast each day or only the effect?

If the spell is recast each day, that would mean that the poor fellow can find some solace passing his nights in a church if the maga penetration is not high enough.

This also mean he actually gain one warping point per day (lvl 50 spell !) but would not gain the constant mystical warping because the spell actually last from midnight to sunrise so roughtly 1/4 of the time not one half.

I'm trying to understand so any feedback here would be welcome !

Okay, I don't know what you think about that spell, but I find it cruel, messy, evil and I like it. Very Unseelie-like.

Danse Macabre
Rego Corpus lvl 25

R:Voice, D: While (Hearing music), T: Ind

Force the target to dance while he hear music, the target can still talk but otherwise all his other movements are only dancing. The spell force him to dance, even if he's becomes unconscious or dead (it's rego-corpus).
If the target's is a mage, he can't cast with gestures and need a good concentration check.
Also take note that faeries don't sleep and can continue for a pretty long time before being bored by the dancing skeletton.

(B:10, +2 Voice, +1 While (Hearing music))

A storyguide could argue that someone don't hear things while being unconscious or dead, I could agree to that. Here's another version that sound less "right" but still do the job.

Danse Macabre v0.1
Rego Corpus lvl 25

R:Voice, D: While (Dancing), T: Ind

Force the target to dance as long as he is dancing (seems not right), the target can still talk but otherwise is forced to dance. The spell force him to dance, even if he's becomes unconscious or dead (it's rego-corpus).
If the target's is a mage, he can't cast with gestures and need a good concentration check.
Also take note that faeries don't sleep and can continue for a pretty long time before being bored by the dancing skeletton.

The only method for the victim to stop dancing is with external that force him to stop to dance, holding him (gentle method), make him fall down or chopping a leg with an axe (quite harsh method).

(B:10, +2 Voice, +1 While (Dancing))

The brothers Grimm would be proud! Those are truly wicked.

Yeeeffff! OK those are pretty harsh. One should not piss off any magus, but what a way to go!


I love your spells. I'm not sure about the Danse one, though, because the intent of the While Duration is that it only lasts while the target is doing something. I don't think it's fair for the spell to force the target to do something, and then last for as long as the target does the thing that the spell is forcing him to do. :slight_smile:

One of the spells I designed during playtest was fairly similar to this, only for the condition, it used "target is intoxicated." So, you'd cast it on someone who had drunk the potent faerie wine, and he'd dance all night, probably killing himself in the process.

Another good use of the While condition is "while traveling." You cast it at the beginning of your journey, and produce an effect that lasts until you get where you're going, as long as you don't stop. An "Ignore Fatigue" effect is a good one for that -- you'll be exhausted when you get there, but you'll get there in half the time.

"While sleeping" spells are interesting, but they are more for color than for exciting effects, I'd say. I remember a spell I came up with that made a person look like an inanimate object for as long as he was asleep. Another interesting idea is an Intellego Imaginem spell that tells the caster in a dream about his surroundings while he sleeps.

Regarding your question about recurring spells, they are like devices with an environmental trigger. The spell activates again each time, but I'd agree that if the aura is stronger than the effect's penetration, it doesn't work that time. Fleeing to a church might very well allow the target to escape the curse of the prowling beast, at least temporarily.

I don't think it's fair either, this infinite loop feeling, that's why I made the version while hearing music. I'm starting to love the spell-timing mastery.

I've got a question, is "While awake" a valid duration ? It sounds right but a little too powerful.

So that also mean he does gain one warping point per night ? Wow, talk about side effects !

Thanks Erik, your feedback was appreciated

Warp 75 in 2 months and a half..... QUITE a side effect! :laughing:


I probably wouldn't allow that myself, because the guideline specifies it needs to be a common and temporary state. A person "being awake" isn't really doing anything. I grant you, a person "being asleep" isn't doing much either. :slight_smile: It's equivalent to Concentration, so it should be something that requires the target to do something similar to concentrating. "While (concentrating)" or "While (working)" would be perfectly acceptable to me.

No, no extra Warping for the high level; it's like an invested device with a constant effect, and the duration is just renewed. The target will get Warping for being under a constant effect, though.

Hey, no problem. :slight_smile:

Being awake -is- temporary though :slight_smile:

Also, be amusing to cast two spells on a target, one to make music while they dance, and one to force them to dance while they hear music ^^

So is being alive... :unamused:

Regarding the spell that forces the target to dance while he's dancing, well, that's precisely where some natural resistance should be allowed.

Theses spells must be popular, only a +1 duration :unamused:. Take that Bonisagus and your "limits" !

Okay, thanks for the info, i'm starting to have a lots of ideas. I didn't like "being awake" either as it's, most of the time, longer than a sun duration.

Actually though, after some thought.. I think the dance: while dancing thing is fine.

Think of it this way, in folklore, there are plenty of times when people are tricked by faeries, gotten drunk, and then enticed to dance.. and then, once dancing, are unable to stop until they collapse or die.. so, works for me.. but they have to be dancing in the first place before you can hit them with the nasty effect :slight_smile:

My character has Spell Timing, so my group has some first-hand expertise about this trick. It is not too powerful at all as long as you are reasonable and remember to inflict cumulative long-term fatigue for staying awake all night. That way, people will use the duration from dawn to bedtime, typically. Which amounts to one and a half Sun durations, two Sun timespans at most (e.g. if you cast at dawn, then you stay awake all night to make astronomical measures). A bit more powerful than vanilla Sun, but not overwhelmingly so (as fitting for a Minor Virtue). OTOH, it's a Mystery Hermetic Virtue, it's supposed to give some nice extra oomph and flexibility to vanilla Bonisagus Durations.

Nahh, if you wish to be really wicked, be an unrepentant pagan chthonic magus, and cast spont Personal spells with Forsaken duration. You are not ever going to seek absolution from a God you don't believe in, so all such spells are Permanent, no need for rituals or vis. The only thing that keeps you from overuse of this trick, is that the spells register as Infernal to Quaesitor Intellego spells :frowning: But as long as there aren't nosy Quaesitors around, you're king 8) Too bad, my group has a magus with Sense Unholiness.

Hum... Well, there's also the fact that the infernal would take a real interest in you 8)

Yes but just last week you were saying that Diedne + Cthonic wasn't too powerful either. I susspect that I like to play with a bit more powerful characters than most folks, but think that your comfort zone for power exceeeds my own by a fair amount.

Not that I have a whole lot of insight regarding spell timeing. I haven't read that section for a few months and I've haven't really messed with it since the play test so I could be in complete agreement with you regarding balance here. Yet it does seem a little bit out of the spirit of the thing however.

It's like a spell of duration bargain cast to beneft the person who breaks a bargain rather than punish them. It's technically OK but it violates the spirit of the parameter. I think that I'd agree with Mr. Dahl up-thread; being awake shouldn't qualify as doing something, for taste reasons even if there are no balance reasons.

Warping points for continuous effects aren't gained overnight but seasonally so unless you keep the Target under the affect of the spell/effect for three straight months or more, I wouldn't worry about warping points (aside from 1 when the spell is cast/effect activated).

Let them come. Being chthonic means you're never going to regret pilfering corpses for infernal vis 8)

Oh, sure on the general point (I'd like to reiterate that the SG and the rest of the group seem quite at ease with playing at the kind of power level I fancy, however. Indeed they like having a powerful spont generalist around to cover the various utility areas their various formulaic specialities left uncovered, or to play a useful sidekick to the Flambeau combat monster or the Tytalus mentalist master :wink: ), but on the specific point, I've explained what I meant. We use that particular trick of ST to cover 1+1/2 Sun durations, from bedrise to bedtime, or 2x Sun Durations at most. Does it seem too powerful to you ? :open_mouth:

The writeup of the Virtue gives "Not sleeping" as an example of typical usage for the Not (Condition) Duration, so I must amicably but radically disagree from you on this. :slight_smile:

You could use it (or the similar Cursed duration) to reward someone that performs a service for you. You indeed reverse the goal of the parameter, but it seems sufficiently flavorful to me, and hence in spirit. Faeries and demons reward people that perform sevices for them all the time.

I like the spells, but I find Merinitia rules tend to leave balance... failing.

Based on the examples given, I'd interpret the condition/activity to typically last significantly less than a day. Consider the difference between Not (Sleeping) (a +2 duration) and While (Awake) (a +1 duration); you would only need the Not duration if "temporary" is taken as important. I would furthermore suggest that magically tampering with the condition breaks the duration, just like breaking a circle breaks a Ring duration.

The added oomph, gained in return for the initiation, is already covered by the ability to use a non-standard spell parameters without the +1 magnitude normally incurred, and in spontaneous magic - and Spell Timing includes many such parameters. There is no need to increase the oomph factor by making the While duration powerful through generous Conditions.

I don't like that Spell Timing allows magi to cast a Ritual spell instead of making a magic item to make an effect last indefinitely, but the werewolf-curse spell is excellent. Perhaps it isn't such a bad idea.

Note that I also dislike the core Until (Condition) duration, especially the line "Until (Condition) spells cannot normally be dispelled by magic", but also the ease with which Merinitia magi create permanent effects. (Whereas a normal magus would need to cast The Bountiful Feast yearly, a Merinitia will instead cast an Until (pigs fly over the frozen hell) spell, at the same level...) I also find Road problematic to adjudicate, and both Road and Fire to be somewhat inappropriate. If I were to rewrite things, I'd replace Fire with Midday/Midnight, totally rework Until (Condition), at the very least.