Question about "Intangible Tunnel" variant


I have been thinking about a variant of the "Opening the Intangible Tunnel" spell. I've already read the Intangible Assassin chapter on Hermetic Projects (I love those concepts and ideas).

This is the "problem" I'm currently trying to solve (that is to say, a Magus is trying to solve).

A Magus needs to cast a spell on an object (say, a sword), carried by Grog. The Magus has an Arcane Connection to Grog.

She cannot cast directly "Opening the Intangible Tunnel" on the sword, because she does not have an Arcane Connection to that.

I'm trying to understand if the following sequence of spells would be valid, acceptable or controversial.

  1. The Minute of Reckoning (Hermetic Projects, pag 80)
    ReVi 10
    R: Arc, D: Diam, T: Ind
    (Base effect, +4 Arc, +1 Diameter)
    As the "Opening the Intangible Tunnel", with a duration of Diameter. Spells up to 10 can be cast through this tunnel. The target is Grog.

With this Tunnel she can now target Grog, or the room he is standing in, but she cannot target anything else. Through this Intangible tunnel she casts this:

  1. Finger for Eyes (Hermetic Projects, pag 84)
    InIm 5
    (Base 1, +1 Touch, +1 Diameter, +2 Room)
    Cast through the Intangible Tunnel, the caster can see the Room that the person he touches is in.

Using again the Intangible Tunnel, she casts this:

  1. Approach the Distant Room
    ReVi 10
    R: Touch, D: Diam, T: Room
    (Base effect, +1 Touch, +2 Room, +1 Diameter)
    As the "Opening the Intangible Tunnel", with a duration of Diameter and a target of Room. The target is Grog and the Room he is standing in. Spells up to 15 can be cast through this tunnel. This should open a connection with Grog and everything in the room he is standing in (including the sword).

Now she has another Intangible Tunnel, one targeting Grog and the other one targeting Grog, the room he is standing in and everything in it. She uses the second tunnel to cast this:

  1. Opening the Selective Tunnel
    ReVi 10
    R: Touch, D: Diam, T: Part
    (Base effect, +1 Touch, +1 Part, +1 Diameter)
    As the "Opening the Intangible Tunnel", with a duration of Diameter and a target of Part (the sword). Spells up to 15 can be cast through this tunnel. This should open a connection with the sword, through the Tunnel opened with "Approach the Distant Room", if the "Part" target of its "Room" target can be applied.

My apologies if this is somewhat convoluted. I am trying to understand if my reasonings are valid and not in violation of any Hermetic Limits.

In particular, would you consider legit to use the Target: Part in order to single out a specific object in a Room ?

I'm also thinking she should not be needing the "Finger for Eyes" spell to target the sword, after she has the Tunnel to the Room.

Can you comment on the spell design ?

Thank you

T: Ind explicitly targets an individual and its clothing, and I think it should also apply to the items the target is carrying, like the sword (there are some indirects ways to validate it: items you carry are covered by R: Per, and a teleporting spell can target someone and the stuff he wears and carries just adding casting requisites, not requiring T: Group), so I think you would only need spells 1 and 4, if you want to cast level 15 spells, or just a variant of The Minute of Reckoning with T: Part and solve the issue with a single spell.

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A sword is a thing, not a part. You can target the individual, but to target the sword would require an arcane connection to the sword- even seeing through the grogs eyes would not allow you to target anything you don't have an arcane connection to, including the room. You could use InMe to see what he was seeing, or ReMe to make him do something (like look where you want him to look, or use the sword), or of course ReCo to similar effect, but seeing or feeling the sword through his senses will not allow you to affect it magically, nor will InIm show you the room he is in. #2 could not be cast because the target (room) is not the target of the intangible tunnel (individual). The same problem exists for step 3, and as mentioned the sword is not a part of the room, but an object in its own right eliminating 4.

With an Arcane connection to the grog, can the magus cast an InIm spell using the "Use 1 sense at a distance" guideline at R:Arc to see (or feel?) the sword enough for it to be "sensed" by said magus and then cast on?

This is a bit obscure for me but it seems to say that even if you know via Intellego that a person is behind the wall, you cannot target them unless you see(hear/smell...) them:

Thank you all for your replies. I'm going to comment on them

I somehow missed the obvious part...

Still, let's then assume for the sake of discussion he is not strictly carrying the swords, and rather he has it next to him, in the same room. Are you comfortable with the use of target:Part through the Tunnel:Room to single out the sword ?

You are addressing my main concern about the issue, the use of the Part: target.
I fully agree with you that she cannot target directly the sword without an AC to it - if she had it there wouldn't be the need to address it indirectly.

Seeing through the grog eyes is not enough, IMHO, to reach the sword through the tunnel.

I'm going to disagree with you on the point #2 and #3 though, especially on spell #2: it is exactly what it is designed for (see Hermetic Projects Pag 84)

I don't know how much I am allowed to quote from the source book, but the usage of the target Group, Room, Structure and Boundary through the tunnel is esplicitally mentioned, the InIm "Finger for Eyes" is the first example of its usage.

Given this context, would you still say that the target:Part of the spell #3 would not allow targeting something inside the Room ?

I agree with you, but I think that the issue of perceiving the sword is already solved with spell #2. I don't think, though, that this is enough to allow her to cast on the sword: at best she perceives the Species of the sword, which are not Arcane Connection.

If she could recover, remotely, an Arcane Connection to the sword the rest would be easy.

Well, a "favorite tool or item of clothing" is an arcane connection to somebody lasting months. Swords are not something that casual in this age. They are expensive items and if you are a warrior you probably train with it a lot. So a warrior's sword could easily be his favorite tool.

So the question is: does this connection go both ways? If you have some part from the grog, is that a an arcane connection to his favorite sword?

We had a similar issue when talking about using a MuVi spell on a spell cast by another spellcaster. Does an arcane connection to that spellcaster grant a penetration bonus for a spell targeted to one of his spells? People seemed to agree that was the case.

So perhaps you could target his favorite (and probably unique) sword if you had an arcane connection to him. Perhaps.

I would say that for any personal item, the sole owner and user is one of the most important things in the world, even if the reverse isn't true.

This should warrant making the owner an AC lasting months to something he has used regularly for a few years.
Up to years for something that has been owned decades or used intensely / worn nearly constantly for years.
Down to a day for an item that has been used regularly for a week.

The thing is, an arcane connection is supposed to have been a part of the thing it is an arcane connection to (at least mystically):

When it had been actual part, that's easier. So a lock of your hair had been a part of you, while you were not part of your lock of hair. When it hadn't been an actual part, just mystically a part, things get a little fuzzier, but I don't think that much more so. The only two-way connection I can recall is magus-familiar, a situation where the two are mystically bonded to be one, but neither is truly the lesser part of the other. I suppose that last might be something like having a perfect sphere and chopping it perfectly in half instead of chipping a little piece off or it. When that happens the rules get vague.

I had been thinking about this offline and I also thought about the sword bearer being an arcane connection to the sword. He probably is, but that's not useful at all, as he is in the room of the sword, not next to the Intangible Tunnel caster.

Anyway things have changed now...

Then it is an odd scenario. You pointed out examples where you can affect a Room and a Group through Intangible Tunnel spells. You can because you can use R: Touch through your tunnel, and then just T: Group or T: Room, the first one because the grog is part of that group, and the second because target Room includes the content of the room, so the Grog serves to define that target.

But as I stand corrected and the sword isn't part of your target, you can't get a valid target to the sword. You can either expand your targets or shrink it to Part, but not move the focus away.

So: the best idea seems to get a valid arcane connection to the sword. Make the grog, now that he is next to it, cut his finger with the blade (stabbing himself would also work but would probably reduce loyalty), teleport him back and use the wound as an AC, or something like that.

Here's an idea - how about using MuVi to retarget the target of the tunnel? The MuVi guideline "significantly change a spell of less than or equal to the level +1 magnitude of the vim spell" includes changing target, if the target was possible for the original spell.
So how about Moving the intangible tunnel a MuVi spell which moves the tunnel from its original target to another Arcane Connection that's touching the original target. At R: Touch, D:Diameter, T:Ind, a level 20 version would allow a level 15 intangible tunnel to shift target for a diameter to another target that is touching the original target.

I am curious, rulewise why would the following not work ?

  • Open an intangible tunnel to the sword bearer, that is standing in a room with a sword next to him on a table.

  • Cast the following spell on the intangible tunnel :

Ominous glow CR IM 5
R:Touch, D: Diameter, T: Room
Creates a pink glow coming from all the swords in the room.
(Base level 1, +1 Touch, +1 Diameter, +2 Room)
Guideline : Create an image that affects a single sense.

Granted, you are not targeting "the sword" but all the swords in the room.

I am not sure if this could be a problem:

As far as I can tell, it looks like the general consensus is that, given the conditions described, the usage of T:Part is not going to work as I was assuming, therefore I'm going to scrap the idea and try a different approach.

I appreciate your feedback anyway, here's my thoughts.

The issue is still the same: targeting the sword without having an Arcane Connection to it. If she manages to get an Arcane Connection to the Sword then she already has the option of a direct Intangible Tunnel in her sleeve, no need to work around that.

I'll see what my troupe would say about this. If this is accepted then the problem is solved, but I'm not very confident that it will be the case. That's why I'm trying another route.

That would be nice, but I'm afraid it's out of reach for her, and not what she reasonably would do.

This would be order to retarget the Tunnel with a MuVi effect she would still need an Arcane Connection to the sword. But in that case, she would use it directly with The Minute of Reckoning (or another variant at R: AC)

I think she could work on something like this with her Arts. There would be drawbacks, for her specific case though.

Here's another approach:

Given the use of this:

do you think that this spell lets her qualify for the use of T:Sight for another spell ?

I'm looking for a broad interpretation of the T:Sight guideline

If she qualifies for the T:Sight than she doesn't need an AC to the sword, and she could cast a different spell on it (even another Tunnel Variant like The Evil Eye)


So such spells don't allow further targets, and the reason might well be, that magically manipulated or created species do not support T: Sight effects.


I see, thank you for pointing this out. This means she is back to square one :slight_smile:

I recall seeing in another book (though I am not going to look it up right now) that one of the limitations on arcane connections was that you could see what you have a connection to, but not their surroundings if you use an Intelligo effect through an arcane connection.

The other issue is that while a sword on the belt might be considered part of the person in terms of the arcane connection, a part must be a part of an individual, and thus the spell to target the sword would have to be a corpus spell with, presumably, a Terram requisite, and I would leave it to my player to try and wrap their mind around how that would work.

However, it seems to me that there are two more fundamental aspects of this that need to be considered- the guideline from which intangible tunnel is derived is simply the ability to create conduits for spells. It seems to me that if you create a conduit with target room that conduit would be able to affect anything in that room, since the spell is being conducted to the whole area rather than an individual target.

The other issue which is fundamental is whether you can link to an arcane connection through an arcane connection- if so the entire exercise becomes trivial since you can force your person to place an arcane connection to the room inside their body (generally mouth) and overcome the limits otherwise involved. However intangible tunnel only allows you to cast spells through it, not inherently use arcane connections once removed (though I suppose if you teleport the contents of their mouth to you...)
If you have a generous storyteller you might manage this using the air in the persons lungs, teleporting it into a glass jar then using it as an arcane connection to the room it was taken from... presumably ReCo(au) with target part to teleport the air...

the other obvious possibility would be to use ReMe to switch minds with the grog, cast the spell, then switch back- if your Gift is associated with your mind and not your body...

With this are you agreeing that the second tunnel (Approach the Distant Room, ReVi, R: Touch, D: Diam, T: Room ) allows her to cast a spell on the sword, provided she can somehow sense it ? (Which, of course, she still cannot)

My apologies, I'm not understanding what you are meaning here, especially the part regarding the ReCo(Au). I cannot see where this is going. Can I ask you to clarify it ?