Rego crafting and Figurines: possible?

So, I'm looking for ways to grant an entire academy of mixed Gifted/mundane immunity to the Gift - yeah, I know. "Fully Integrating Gentle Gift" is the long-term solution (and technically the easier one), but that's a ways off. "Learning Parma well enough to wrap 4 students at a time" is the current (lousy) plan - Right now, I'm looking for a better solution.

Anyway, one possible solution is Figurine Magic (HoH:TL, pg 33) - it grants a minor virtue to the target for 2 or 4 seasons, as long as the caster spends some time making a little doll. According to RoP:M, "Unaffected by the Gift" is a minor virtue. Therefore, you can (theoretically) use Figurine Magic to grant immunity to the Gift for as many folks as you can crank out little dollies.

So far, so good - the main restriction seems to be that it takes a month to craft a wax doll for the target (2 months for wood), at which point you can cast the magic in it. With that in mind: can a magus use Rego crafting magic to speed that process up? Some thoughts:

  1. Technically, as I read it, the purpose of the time spent crafting is to make a good likeness - not to put magic into it. Instead, once you get a figurine of sufficient quality, you can then use it for an effect. So you're not using magic to cast magic, or anything like that.

  2. It would be an ease factor of 9 to do the wax, or 12 for the wood - which is actually pretty easy to do, if you've got an afternoon and your GM isn't making you roll for botches each time on your magic roll.

  3. So the main issue is probably game balance. If this was integrated into Hermetic theory, you could crank out HUGE numbers of low-level enchanted items in a day.

  4. And honestly, if you could use Rego magic here, it would probably say so, as this seems to scream for it.

  5. Would other forms of crafting magic (Such as actual Craft Magic, from Ex Misc) allow a user to make a charged version of the figurine, all at once? In looking at the rules, you'd have to get a pretty nice roll on the Craft roll in order to get multiple charges out of the darned thing...

That being said, as "ways to get around the Gift", it does lend itself to interesting stories - as an apprentice's ability to interact with their fellow students is now based on a little wooden figurine stored somewhere in the school (likely in the student's bedchamber, or else in the Headmaster's office). Which makes it a ripe target for destruction (or destruction and replacement with a forgery, so no one can tell its gone for a few weeks) by a rival.

I suppose that, even if it wasn't feasible to create such a mass-produced set, you could create them just for the Gifted students and non-Gifted staff (assume 4 gifted and 10-20 non-gifted) - at which point they wouldn't hate each other, but would end up forming a clique against the rest of the students. That would require basically a full-time crafter of items, or else contracting it out to a group of them on a regular basis.

So, I guess I just talked myself into realizing that this isn't possible, simply due to game balance - unless I'm missing something? (Currently, alternate plans are "Breakthrough Research into granting "Unaffected by the Gift", "Breakthrough Research for an Apprentice's Parma that doesn't grant Magic Resistance, but does block the Gift", or "Breakthrough Parma - Sticky (can break line of Sight and still grant the defense to others)".

My take:
It takes no-where near a month to make a wax doll of a target (unless you're rather obsessive about detail) - same with wood and 2 months.
The time limit is based on how much time it takes to slowly fil the doll with magic, not how long it takes to craft it, regardless of what the sell text says.
So essentially you'd be trying to hurry a form of lab activity, which is a big no-no.

All is not lost for your idea yet!

Figurine Magic is not a Hermetic virtue, it is a Supernatural virtue.
So is Unaffected by the Gift.
Thus, as far as I can tell, you do not need Gifted Figurine crafters!

So you "aquire" a few unGifted to craft your figurines (and probably ones for themselves as well), and Bob's your uncle.
Figuratively speaking.

Serf's parma but if figurine magic works like you say 78you can grant whatever virtue you fancy) you actually only need one figurine crafter and you can munchkin your way through it. If you want to do so, that is.

Figurine crafter grantes Figurine Crafter to regular people via figurines. Those now have 2 seasons to do figurines for other people.

Let's say that he does it with wax figures.
MONTH: maximum number of people able to work figurine magic
0 = 1 (original crafter)
1 = 2 (original + dude with figurine)
2 = 4
3 = 8
4 = 16
5 = 32
6 = 64
7 = 128
8 = 256
Now the first dude that was granted the virtue via figurine magic loses his ability to craft figurines, but you have so many of them that he should be able to get a replacement easily.

So, it is extremely easy to munchkin your way using that and start dishing out. I thought figurine magic and leadworker were more or less the same IIRC; but it seems they might not. I can easily see a Virtue Granting industrial covenant here.

It can grant general or supernatural virtues (explicitly).
I only pointed out that it is a supernatural virtue because it is not a Hermetic Virtue, namely it does not require the user to have the Gift.

It does however require you to have some skill with both Craft Sculpure and Craft Figurine as I recall - so you can't quite make an industry of it the way seen above.

But yes, it's yet another way of granting virtues in ArM5, something which is less and less of a trick these days.

Ah ok. I would need to check what "some skill" means (level 1? level 3?) but you can certainly build an industry out of it. Get level 1, grant puissant to both abilities + figurine magic and there you go. One season preparing a crafter, and one season working. After that he himself prepares his own figurines. So he works half of the time and prepares himself to work during the other 2 seasons of the year. After a while he has accumulated enough exposure experience to avoid having to prepare puissant figurines for himself, and can work 5 months (5 figurines) and invest one month to prepare for the next 5.

Virtues on demand for the troupe? Yes, master. You need a second sight dude and a premonitions dude for next adventure in a month? Sure master, no problem at all. We can also make Johann breath fire if you want and we will totally change the sleeping habits of Michael and turn him Nocturnal just with a snap of our fingers.


which is pretty much why I never introduced that figurine crafter I wrote about a year back into play. Too silly!

only if that's a general or supernatural virtue! Oh, wait, don't tell me. It's a supernatural virtue, right.

That's actually harder, because nocturnal is listed as a flaw :wink:

Your hypothesis appears to be correct, that the bulk of the time is putting magic into the figurine, using the Figurine Magic ability, rather than carving it.

Since we have half a dozen traditions that can do that already, I do not see him as specially silly unless yo consider giving virtues as candy inArM5 as flawed and something that makes the V&F system quite less appealing than it used to be in previous editions. Oh, wait. :laughing:

Ah right. I stand corrected :mrgreen:

Those 2 are Abilities so I had to verify. You'd use them with a score of 1, which is limited.

And the duration is limited to 2/4 seasons, with Figurine + Puissant you'd get 8 extra wax per year since it's almost impossible to fail those. Still exponential enough.

Ah, right :slight_smile: Less abuse than I thought, but still. Grant puissant as a second figurine and the score is effectively 3.
Virtue granting like pretzels is a feature of ArM5, so no biggie when you look at the wider picture. Actually the only ones that do no seem able to do that do that easily are hermetic magi.

My main issue with this virtue granting is that it makes characters way less individualized, and their V&F selection less important instead of their defining features that tell you who the character actually is. They stop being part of your essential nature, who you are, and what is your innermost driving forces to become the shirt you decide to wear today.


But sometimes you just want to cherry pick just one more minor tiny tidbit...

Figurine magic opens up possibilities for pure muchkinism. I don't think I will ever mention it to my players as an option.
I started to list how this can be applied and used also in Laboratory work, but I said: LoL, no.

Indeed. 'General Virtues' is quite a wide category.

Then you'd better not show them neither of the ROP books, the ancient magic book, the Hedge magic book, the mysteries book,and I am sure I am forgetting one or 2 :wink:


The real problem starts when your Figurine magician starts to give the Minor Supernatural Virtue: Lesser Craft Magic (Rival Magic, page 11) along with whatever Virtue you desire.
Suddenly you have magical items giving virtues and you are not limited with the Virtues availability. It is even worsens as you troupe can now craft in their Hermetic Virtues (e.g.: Puissant, Affinity with Art) into items, but that's more to the fact that Lesser Craft Magic is quite a can of worms on it's own. :wink:

Just a small example:
You get a well known and good silversmith and commission him to make your new silver headband adorned with opals (+4 memory material bonus).
You provide him with the silver/opals, which material already contains the necessary 4 pawns of Vis.
Your Figurine maker (or 2 makers) enhances your silversmith with two new virtues: Lesser Craft Magic and Book Learner.
You can easily plant the command into your crafter's mind not to worry about these new fantastic capabilities and only focus on your new headband. After a week he will finish the commissioned work and you just have became richer with a fantastic new magical item granting you the Book learner virtue lasting forever or until stolen/destroyed.

Of course, your Figurine enchanter can work on your next project(s) with your crafter: Good Teacher, Puissant (ability), Affinity (ability), Though, Inoffensive to Animals, Intuition, Keen Vision, Couple of Lesser Immunities, Luck, Magic Sensitivity for your Forrester grog to find you otherwise lost Vis sources, Self-Confident, and Unaging (so your Figurine master can work on your much grander projects)... just from the Core book just to mention some I would choose.
or... are we going on an adventure? I just pick up my Independent Study (HoH:MC p.86) opal amulet for the 3xp extra. :wink:

Say... whenever you get someone with some special ability/virtue you compel them to work that into a magical item for you, they don't even need any Craft ability. Or in case you have something special in your troupe... any kind of a Virtue... suddenly it is available for everyone to pick it up and use it.

Virtue granting magic items would enable your troupe to cherry pick for the next adventure: 'So we are going to fight a Dragon, wait a second and I get my Ruby ring with Greater Immunity from Fire.'
And the worst is, when you start use Imbued with the Spirit of (FORM) or Extract (FORM) Vis magic items with your Magi eliminating the Vis shortage problem or give out Lesser Powers to your grogs as you see fit.
Or even worse... you start to create magical items giving you Mystical Virtues. (Compel the dead mage's ghost known to be part of the Mystery Cult -> imprison in a crafter you have also enslaved with ReMe -> give your crafter Lesser Craft Magic and you got it.
(Initiation rituals... those are so last century. :smiley: )

And the beauty in all this... these magical items won't even cause warping as the effect isn't strong enough.
Use it only less than half a year, so only in two seasons, with small brakes, and you have avoided 1 warping point for 6 extra xp.
(The Effect is only 20 for the Book Learner: 5 Base, +5 Touch, +10 Day, the +1 2/day isn't calculated for the warping, as far as I know.)

In total... this combination is a great tool for pure muchkinism... and I think I will simply house rule Figurine magic, only to work with General Virtues. I would leave it powerful enough and eliminate all possible issues linked.