Rules That Should Be Core

Actually, I believe the text I quoted is still there in the MuVi guidelines (right at the beginning) and haven't been removed by any errata. The text you quoted was added in an errata, and then changed in a later errata.

Oh, then you just left out the last paragraph, which requires Wizard's Communion to be a year-duration Ritual to use it with Aegis of the Hearth. The post-errata version comes closer to your interpretation than the pre-errata version does.

And, if you really want to simplify things, you could do them all with Sun duration and not have two versions, which is possible post-errata.

I left out a whole lot of paragraphs - the MuVi guidelines are half a page long after all.
The text you quoted which required a year-duration of Wizard's Communion to work with Aegis of the Hearth wasn't there in the original version of the text, but was added later as an errata.
It was then removed in a second errata and replaced with text requiring MuVi spells to have a duration long enough to cover the casting time of the spell to be modified.
Personally I ignore both of these errata.

That's why I said yours was pre-pre-errata, as in you were leaving out the other paragraph on duration that has been the in-print version for most of two decades. It was only in the errata for the first printing; since the second printing it isn't even part of the errata, it was just the standard core rule until the newer errata.

I forget why the first change was made. I think something screwy happened with the numbers... Let's see... Oh, one of them was that you could cast many Rituals without needing a Ritual, just Formulaic spells; that was a big one.

Both changes are still listed in the official errata list and thus count as errata as far as I am concerned - especially since my printed copy of the rulebook doesn't include either of them. I suppose I have an early printing of the book.
Anyway - we are getting a bit off topic here, and I think we both agree on what the official rules say and have said on this matter.

Day of Communion (TtA, p. 137) does actually have D: Sun, and was in fact explicitly designed with D: Sun. Specifically because of the problems with Wizard's Communion and the MuVi errata.

Maybe what should be core is an adjustment to Mercurian Magic that allows the character to pick up Day of Communion / Wizard's Vigil since Wizard's Communion doesn't work with Rituals?


That would go far to fix Mercurian Magic.
Though getting Wizard's Communion for free isn't nothing - as it should provide a similar spell bonus to anyone (re-)inventing the Day of Communion./Wizard's Vigil.

I agree with callen. The point of the Mercurian Magic virtue was to make a character good at ritual magic and collaborative ritual magic - the staple of the cult of mercury. The base spell was limited after an errata and further publication. The base virtue should be rewritten as well, and Day of Communion / Wizard's Vigil should be core. It makes no sense to learn a version of Wizard's Communion for free when learning a better ritual now that this spell no longer helps with ritual magic. If you need to spend a season re-inventing a spell in order for your virtue's benefit to applies, it's no longer a virtue, it's a chore.



I suspect that some of the rules discussed above might more aptly belong either in the thread for rules requiring clarification or in a shiny new thread for rules that ought to be added or changed.

I think that:

  • Most spell guidelines from the supplements should be gathered into the core book if they are available to most magi (and if they are worth retaining.)
  • Spells from the supplements that illustrate use of such guidelines should similarly be included.
  • We now have enough creatures and beings to have a core Monster Manual. With a different title, of course.
  • Initiations pervade the non-Core rules. They deserve promotion to Core.
  • The default rules for creating advanced magi deserve demotion from Core, because players avoid using them when possible, since they generally result in PCs with inferior stats. Discussing what should belong here is beyond the scope of this thread, but I predict that players will suddenly feel less need to describe every season if presented with rules that offer a more attractive alternative.
  • Full rules for Rego crafting belong in Core. This is something that any magus can do, and any Rego magus ought consider. I think that much here needs clarification, but that can be done as part of consolidation.
  • I'm not sure if the combat rules from supplements such as LoM are desirable, but if they are, they should be core. That is to say, it is worth deciding what ought really should be optional and what should be the norm, with the norm being in core.
    (must resist talking about Wards)
    (and Fast Casting)
    (and MuVi)
    (and resisting Twilight)
  • Each House deserves two pages in Core. Ex Misc should have 2-3 traditions outlined, as well as the general rules for creating your own.
  • A page or two for each Tribunal.
  • Something (better?) explaining what a spell guideline is and is not. (And then making sure that rules in both core and revised supplements really stick to it.)
  • Expanded and curated recommended reading list (by topic, region, etc).
  • Three different and not always compatible rules for economy are spread across the rules, based on Labor Points, Mythic Pennies and Level of Boon/Quality. Pick exactly one of these in Core and use it. (Preferably not Labor Points. Ok, Vis is a fourth economy, but translating between vis and the mundane economy becomes easier if there's only one of the latter. I like Mythic Pennies because real people think about money; the downside is that bean counting takes time and isn't everyone's idea of fun. I like the Average/Superior/etc system because it is a simple and elegant way for players to make good, quick, flavorful choices; the downside is that no one within the game world thinks in such terms.)
  • Rules for Mythic Companions should be in Core. (Are they already? I don't remember.) IE, 2 vps per fp, with a free virtue.
  • Hedge traditions do not need to be in Core. The core game features Hermetic Magi, and it is fine to simply tell players to load a Grog, Companion or Mythic Companion with lots of cool stuff.

Hmm. Good enough.




I really want to second this as well. One of the criticisms I've seen online is how much is just assumed that the player knows, because they've been playing Ars for years and don't need the info. But new players do.


Beyond the whole Houses needing to be described I think more information on the actual Tribunals themselves need to be in the core, and maybe an element of what makes them different from the others.

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I agree with most of what has been said in the various above posts but I do want to add that I think the really important ones are rules for initiating Virtues and the material on magical Research, both original and not. Laboratory work is a major theme of Ars Magica and having in the core the rules on how to modify and expand, with maybe some tiny examples, the rule system would be quite useful.

I also think it would be super useful to collate all the various Spell Guidelines from all the books into the Core.


Everything Ken K just said is correct and true.

You got Labour Points because playtesters hated percentages. In version 2, I gave them only 10% or 5%, complete with an insert saying that was drop the last number or drp the last number, then halve.

Feedback was still No Go, too much math.

I tried Mythic Pennies twice and it didn't get up, so, yes, it was my preference for running trading empires, but it couldn't pass with actual players doing actual play.


So you followed the suggestion of the playtesters and wound up with a book that everybody I come across wants to not use. Sounds like you needed better playtesters. Though ironically I like the labor point system because it mirrors the dysfunctionality of medieval economics so well. I do think the income levels for various income sources are too high, since it puts a standard individual income on par with a covenants income before expenses.

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Silveroak, you don't playtest and then ignore the playtesters. They are working, for free, as part of your team to check customer experience. You don't shop around until you find the ones who tell you your stuff is great. It defeats the whole point.

As to you hating it... well, you've not liked anything else I've done so, I kind of assumed that you hated it already. (shrug)


Speaking solely for myself, I like City and Guild and Labor Points.


Actually I like city and guild, but my players have generally not. I agree you don't shop around for people who will like your stuff, but you do want them to be representative of your customer base and in this instance it seems like they failed in that. (emphasis on seems, since I don't know what was there before and I certainly can't gauge my players reaction to what you didn't publish)
As to "hating everything"- hardly. I am however from an engineering background and do believe there is more value in finding what is broken (so it can be fixed) than praising what isn't.

I love City & Guild, but have also never not ignored covenant finances beyond "so if you want a lab with more than +1 Upkeep, come up with a moneymaking scheme (or enhancement to the existing ones) and recruit the people and make the enchantments to make it work", so I have no idea how well or poorly it meshes with covenant finances.

Edit: It is at least passingly odd that the Workshop statistic that increases on a timescale closer to "generations" than "decades" is called "Innovation". But that's a terminology quibble. I've no beef with the functionality of anything in C&G.

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