Opening the Gift - with complications

I'm currently contemplating a character for a saga about to start. The maga would be a relatively normal hermetic mage, with one complication - she would, in time, likely want to have her Gift opened a second time by a non-Hermetic tradition. I know, it's madness, but that's likely what she would want in time. [I'm not even saying it's going to happen, but my characters tend to have quirks, and I always feel obliged to at least investigate their foibles.]

Reading up in Rival Magic (page 6), it seems the non-Hermetic wizard opening her Gift (again) would have an ease factor of: (2* Supernatural Ability scores) + (Art Scores) + (12, for a Gift already opened).

Am I correct that this means that a Hermetic mage, or practically any tradition with accelerated Arts, faces exceedingly high Ease Factors in joining a non-Hermetic Gifted tradition? After all, it doesn't take all that many seasons for a Hermetic mage to know, say, 40 levels in the Arts. In fact, a generalist apprentice would likely face prohibitive difficulties, even assuming a complete lack of Supernatural abilities outside of the Hermetic Arts.

For most traditions, the totals required (and that's even assuming a simple succesful opening, with sacrifice of the old Arts!) would be well beyond anyone but very talented archmages (since most don't live long enough to keep gaining experience in the way of Hermetic mages do). Succesfully opening the Gift while protecting existing arts would be laughably difficult (twice the prior total, in fact).

Now, I appreciate that Hermeticism is the focus of the game, and that it's complex and consistent system is prohibitive to any others to integrate. Yet, the real effect here is that hermeticism will have a very tough time integrating other traditions, since it will be very hard to acquire true understanding of their abilities. That, to me, seems at odds with existant lore of how things operate.

Note, by the way, that the reverse (a non-Hermetic Gifted mage joining the Order of Hermes) faces a flat +30 to the InVi lab total requirement, instead of +(Arts)+(12). This is obviously much easier, even discounting for the relative ease with which lab totals can be increased.

I see three simple solutions to the problem, which of course should be discussed with the troupe:

  1. your magus had the other tradition opened before starting the apprenticeship and either he forgot about it (for magical or natural reasons) or he decided to not use it anymore (until he changes his mind).
  2. It will be possible for him to research a new way to open the gift to other traditions, which will be much easier. Or his new master will know such an easier teaching method.
  3. Change the rule altogether.

+30 per Virtue, or +60 if you want your previous tradition's gifts to survive.

In general, to do this by the existing rules, you need to do it in apprenticeship or use Mystery initiation (which will only get you a couple abilities unless you're willing to go crazy with Flaws, or you're using Solomonic Magic and are willing to pay huge amounts of vis and bind several spirits).

Obviously, a Breakthrough might change that, though those are often the subject of an entire saga. Have fun!

I think the point of the rules as written is that Hermetic Magi don't try to become magi of other traditions - Pralixians (and Ex Miscellanea in general) may try to absorb other traditions into the order, but by and large Hermetic magi stay Hermetic - they may try Mystery Initiations to gain virtues that access strange magics, or attempt to make a magic breakthrough using other traditions as inspiration (and in between Original Research from HoH:TL and the rules from Hedge Magic and Ancient Magic there are a variety of approaches). Bonisagus' way was to encourage people to fit his magical theory and integrate bits into it, rather than for people to learn his magic and then initiate into other's ways.

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There’s an in system virtue that solves the problem neatly – Subtle Opening, Hedge Magic page 51.
It is an hermetic integration from Folk Witch practice, so the virtue doesn’t yet exist in the core setting.

So, has the character’s parens been fully fleshed out? What does any magi really remember about what their parens did at their own opening?

It seems to me you may be confusing 2 different things. Namely, having one's gift opened to different traditions and integrating different magical practices.

You don't need to be fluent in both traditions to integrate them. In fact, in many ways, this is the reverse of integration, since you're using 2 different systems to do 2 different things.

In the reverse, integration allows you to do the bits of the "new" tradition with the "old" one, without needing to learn an entirely new system of magic. And for this, you just need sources of insight :wink:

It is like, say, you know how to write in English with your hands, and you meet someone who writes in arabic with his feet because she had no hands.
Integration is learning how arabic works (the characters, grammary...) and using it with your existing and functionnal hands.
Learning 2 traditions would be learning how to write arabic with your feet.

=> It is also both easier and more rewarding (in terms of in-game efficiency and hermetic reputation) to do integration.

Just out of interest is it stated anywhere when in an individual's life the Gift manifests? Could it for example be latent and undiscoverable until adulthood?