Say the labtotal is 120, and no apprentice have supernatural virtues.
It seems to me the difficulty to open the arts "without nothing" is 15. (it's a number taken from HM:RE - serf's parma)
Can i open 8 apprentices in (edit => ) 1 seasons?
I would say yes: multiple activities in lab are permitted if they are same Tech Form (InVi here).
But being not sure, here i come...
Eh well, anyone can do that? :mrgreen:
I assume you mean open 8 in ONE season?
I would tentatively say yes. I think its a good idea actually, it would make it worthwhile for a mage to specialise in it, meaning there would always be an option for "troublesome" would be apprentices with lots supernatural stuff to go to such a specialist for a price.
Sorry for the typo: it was as you understood: 8 apprentices in 1 season
David has explicitly stated that lab activities that state one season such as fixing arcane connections and items of quality (Verditius) cannot be done more than once in a season.
As for opening Arts, is it really InVi, or is InVi just for handling appropriate virtues an apprentice may have. If someone has no supernatural virtues, do you need any InVi score (well, beyond In 5 and Vi 5 to not cause problems)? I'll have to check. If not, I'd treat this as above because otherwise you could open the Arts for 100 apprentices in one season if they don't have supernatural virtues. If so, I'd allow multiple, adding the needed InVi totals.
Opening the gift seem to need 15 in InVi Total, at least (per comparison with the non hermetic opening of the gift cf HMRE).
Hmmm... That doesn't look right. I was just reading the section in ArM5. You only need a 10 if your apprentice has a single minor supernatural virtue and you don't mind the apprentice losing that virtue, so it must be lower than 15. Since you add these values, that seems to imply either a score of 0 for an apprentice without a supernatural virtue or no score needed at all. Either way, this seems to fall under the type of thing allowed only once per season.
How do you get that from the rules in HMRE?
It seems strange to me it is "a with number" seasonal activity if supernatural ability (meaning multiple seems rather okay) and "not number" (meaning one per season) season activity if not...
Richard, i don't remember exactly, but i think it's about exotic openings, in the integration. Maybe i'm wrong, but since i don't remember anything against...
ExarKun, it seems strange to me as well. I see a couple of solutions. Page 103 Ars Magica, Distractions from Lab Work, allows you to miss twenty days in a season and still have it count for "lab work". Finish early and get back late and you have 40 days of free time. Second, While Ars Magica is a game of seasons, Page 165, core book, Distractions, breaks up seasons into months. Extrapolating from that gives you a maximum of three "total-less" lab activities (I think it's a good compromise. You don't waste a season, but you don't get infinite either). Third, the Mystery of Philosophical Alchemy gives us an activity with a lab total that is still so easy that, while it still takes a season, you can do something else in the lab. It's a very easy argument that fixing Arcane Connections and other activities with a zero lab total are so easy that you can do something else in the lab without a Mystery. Calms things down a lot if you got to read a book that season, doesn't it?
The intent is that it takes a whole season for each apprentice, no matter what. Note that, even when there are numbers, you are not collecting surplus points until they reach a total; you just need a minimum total to be able to do it at all. So the canonical answer to your question is "no".
Doesn't the opening season count as one of the "one-on-one" season of instruction that a master is required by the Hermetic Code to provide to his apprentice ? That means that if he opened several apprentices in the season, he would either be in violation of the Code already, or still need to provide each and every one with a personal season of teaching, which rather limit the number of apprentices he may open.
Of course, there's the law, and there's what a really crazy mage might try to do
Whether or not it counts as a one-on-one season is secondary to the fact that (in canon) it simply cannot be compounded with multiple apprentices. It would take a breakthrough (and that would be an obscure one for a mage to find worth their time). A "really crazy mage" can try to create a spell that breaks a Major Limit without a breakthrough, or work on 2 lab projects with entirely different Te/Fo combos, or cast 2 different spells at once without any fast-casting/multi-casting Mastery - no stopping them if they "try to do" that either.
If it's that important to a mage, they could in theory contract/hire another mage to open the Arts for them, and then trust them to return that apprentice back into their care. In this sense, apprentices can be a magical commodity, the same as vis or lab equipment. (Not quite "fostering", but not all that diff either.)