There seems to be a running discussion on what to expect in power level and what is and is not allowed so here are my ideas and inner background when I decided to run a hedge saga.
This is my time as an online SG. Maybe I have been overly optimistic about the ease to run this (I considered it to be harder than an offline game, mind you) but some of the problems we have already encountered were things I was not expecting. Since this is my first time I appreciate all your feedback on what you like and do not like. I am bound to make A LOT of mistakes. I hope that is ok with you.
I know the 3 groups of players I have played RPGs with as people first and characters later. that means I know what to expect in a lot of cases before they sit down to write a character. This is obviously not the case for online communities. There is also a kind of unwritten consensus at offline tables that have played for a while that is nonexistant in online games. So things will need to be made more explicit.
I am a guy that likes small magics. This is actually my second run at a hedge magic saga, the first being the war against Damhann Allaidh (we srill call him Davnalleus) using hedgies as "new hermetics" and local traditions: Ignes Festi was represented using some traditions of the Hymns of Apollo, Pralix was a spirit master, we had a local witch (Hex, Entrancement, mythic herbalism, animal ken, flight, second sight and Skinchanger), and a gruagach specialized in shapeshifting spells. It made for a nice group with weird dynamics. Pralix was the most powerful if they could prepare, while Ignes Festi and the gruagach were the front line fighters (at a lower level than hermetics). this is the kind of thing that I was envisioning here. Maybe even lower power level. After some time out of the loop of Ars Magica I thought it would be cool to run a hedge saga again.
The previous saga was played AFTER a saga where Dies Irae looks like kindergarten play. We used mount snowdon as sling of vilano ammunition to sink a fleet. We had 2 dragons (might 70) under our magical control by the end of the saga. We created our own tribunal and expelled the English from England. Good times, but made us think that hermetic magic could be somewhat broken So I am more pro-small tradition than hermetic power level right now since that saga was fun, but way overboard.
So I came to the saga looking for a smaller power level than that of Hermetics.
- My idea for the saga was to put a bunch of hedge traditions through a saga that could be played with low to medium level hermetic magi. And see how they managed. When I talk about hedge magicians I mean characters that are less powerful than a hermetic magus. This might be because they need a lot of preparation, they do not have flexibility in their magic (being great at one thing but sucking big in a lot of others) or some other BIG constraint when it comes to their supernatural powers. My idea was to play up the FLAWS OR LIMITATIONS of the characters and live up to the challenge looking at alternative ways to deal with the problems, not trying to come up with optimized characters. I made a mistake here because I obviously did not transmit that idea at all. I was expecting witches, maybe an elementalist (with a few of the traditions, not all of them) or gruagach, a spirit summoner alright, an Augustan brother (they have some heavy limits on their magic despite being powerful), maybe a touched by realm + heron's magic guy or some stuff like that. Originally I did not expect vitki or some of the other more powerful traditions, but I was willing to accommodate them.
Diversity in power level does not bother me much. Few of the traditions will cover all the angles. Right now the concepts you are putting forward suck at social interaction except the Franciscan, or are not very good at dealing with the superatural or adapting to a rapidly changing situation (ie: an ambush). That is fine with me and something I like to encourage. these are the things that make characters interesting. Hooks built into the character.
when it comes to power level I certainly have my own preferences but are willing to accommodate. I am unsure about the creation of another tradition when more than 50 exist in the official books, though
What I will NOT tolerate is bad blood in the group. Constructive comments and suggestions are OK, but better not to rain much on another people's parade. Thanks.
NOW. The actual discussion.
- Limit power to HMRE level
- All options open
- Limit some of the most powerful options only (discussion on what is that)
Plan A: LIMIT. Limit severely the power level. Hedge Magic is OK; other traditions need SG approval. means that we try to control the power to tone it down somewhat.
Plan B: ALL NON HERMETICS ARE OK. Lift all bans and to hell with it.
Take in mind that the whole idea was to have PROBLEMS coming from the fact that you should NOT be able to bludgeon your way through most issues using magic. I am sure the power level will be higher than that of a folk witch coven, but I am unsure on how high you want to go.
I read the Sahirs in TC&TC. They are less powerful than hermetics, but they seem a tad too powerul for my liking, bt if we go the "play whatever you fancy route I am allowing them.
In the end I do not know if this post makes my idea clearer or more obtuse