[New spell] Footsteps of the Giant

Hi all

Does the spell below seem sound to you guys?
I'm not sure about the Base at all, and I actually believe this could be achieved with different techniques.
Any comments?

Footsteps of the Giant
[tab][/tab]Re(Mu)Te 20
[tab][/tab]Range: Touch, D: Sun, T: Part
Alters the ground where the caster designates, creating a set of footprints of a type and composition defined at the time of casting. The spell could create a set of tracks similar to those created by a heavily loaded cart being pulled by an ox, or something as gentle as the tracks of a bunny rabbit walking through the landscape. Particularly complex tracks might require high Finesse rolls. Although one casting of this spell will only create a single set of tracks, subsequent spells can add to the complexity of the fake track composition.
[tab][/tab](Base 3, +1 Touch, +2 Sun, +1 Part, +1 Delicate shape)

looks fine to me at first glance

I have several issues with the spell as written.

First, there's no reason to include a Muto Requisite; you are not changing the nature of the soil, just "manipulating" it (as you would physically by pressing some shapes onto it. I would point out that you are not taking into account the Requisite in the level calculation anyway.

Second, it's not clear what "the ground where the caster designates" means. If it's meant to create a set of tracks in a certain spot, Momentary duration is certainly sufficient: the magic fades in a moment, the tracks remain (as would the charring provoked by a Pilum of Fire). If instead you want the caster to leave tracks of a certain type as he walks, you'd need longer duration -- I'd suggest Concentration over Sun, both because it's lower and because you can drop the effect when you want.

Third, I really do not think you need a "Delicate shape" modifier, although this is more subject to debate. Instead, I'd call for a Finesse roll to get something really complex or that can fool even an expert tracker.

Ultimately, I'd make it a ReTe level 5 or level 10 spell (Base 3, R:Touch, D:Mon or Conc, T:Part); note that the Conc version that modifies the ground as you walk is exactly the same level as the Trackless step.

Many thanks for the comments ezzelino.
I completely agree with loosing the Muto requisite. Also your comments on Duration makes sense.
I have rewritten this spell a few times before asking you guys for help, and it seems it is a mixture of different versions. The only reason for going with Muto and Sun as in the above, would be if one wanted the tracks to dissappear at sundown. But in most cases permanent tracks would be fine.

I believe my ideas for using this spell was split into different uses that requires different spells.

  1. Making the spell a Touch/Conc/Part that modifies the ground as one passes along, altering the tracks you would normally create, makes for a good spell. And I agree that it should follow Trackless Step closely.

  2. I was, however, also considering using the spell to create a false set of tracks (rather than altering tracks made) in a direction where the Magus would not go. Using the spell to cause fear, wonder or just a set of decoy tracks. Such a spell might require a different Range/Target to create tracks along a path, something that might suit Faerie magic well. It should be possible with standard Hermetic Magic as well, however. If the tracks 'begin' within Rouch range, it might be sufficient to add maybe +2 magnitudes for Size, to affect a larger area. On the other hand, one doesn't need Concentration duration with such a spell. In this case the spell might be ReTe level 10, or possibly 15 if one supports the +1 magnitude for creating delicate/complex/varying track shapes.

I would probably ask for a Finesse roll to get the kind of tracks that you want(ie always), just a higher one to get more complex ones, or tracks the caster isn´t quite certain or knowledgeable of.

As already said, no Muto needed. At least not unless you want to do something really exotic about those tracks.
Like petrified tracks on sand or something other funny.

Overall it´s a nice spell.

I would rather keep that as a degree of complexity, for allowing any sort of tracks to be created.

With the useful comments above I've split the spells into two different, but simliar, spells - and made a few corrections.

When Giant's Follow in the Footsteps of Dwarves
[tab][/tab]ReTe 15
[tab][/tab]Range: Touch, D: Concentration, T: Group
[tab][/tab]Casting Total: +30
Alters the tracks left upon the earth of a group of people, animals or other beings - until they come to a stop, such as to rest or fight. This spell alters the actual footprints of a travelling party into a different set of footprints as defined at the time of casting. The change can include any number of changes to track shape, type, depth, size and quantity – but truly complex tracks requires high Finesse rolls.
[tab][/tab](Base 3, +1 Touch, +1 Concentration, +2 Group)

The Tracks of Those That Were Never Truly There
[tab][/tab]ReTe 20
[tab][/tab]Range: Touch, D: Mom, T: Part
[tab][/tab]Casting Total: +20
Alters the ground in a direction or area designated by the caster, creating a set of footprints of a composition defined at the time of casting. The tracks must start at the casters feet, but can ‘travel’ to any destination from there, as long as the tracks are continuous and the total affected area is no larger than a 100 x 100 pace square. The Magus can choose to end the tracks in a less than abrupt manner, upon reaching the limit of the spell, by slowly fading the tracks to a blur – requiring a Finesse roll of 9+. The spell can create any set of tracks the Magus has knowledge of including imitating those created by a heavily loaded cart being pulled by an ox, or something as gentle as the tracks of a bunny rabbit hopping through the landscape. Although one casting of this spell will only create a single set of tracks, subsequent spells can add to the complexity of the ‘false track composition’.
[tab][/tab](Base 3, +1 Touch, +1 Part, +2 size, +1 complexity)

I'm not really sure about the second one in terms of using Range Touch, and adding magnitudes for size. Do you guys have a better way to handle that or is it kosher?

For the last one, I'd be inclined to boost the range to voice or sight, with the range in question determining how far the tracks go.

It'd also be ideal for the Faerie Magic range 'Road'