Seasonal Activities and Advancement

I think we're pretty much at the limit for things to do this season (anyone think I'm missing something?) I'm waiting on an answer in the Haunted Covenant thread, but I don't think there's much more to do there. Likewise, I don't think there's much more play in the Relations with the Locals thread.

MTKnife, is it time to start thinking about activities over the season? How many seasons are we advancing (I wouldn't mind several)? Is there a whole season left, or only part? How much adventure can we have from the covenant set-up?

MTKnife, I wasn't quite sure what, if anything, happens to spring of the first year? Presumably that's when we've been travelling and such like - do we get any experience for it?

Anyway, approximate plan for Gregorius is:

Spring: ? Adventure xp?
Summer:? Adventure xp? If not, Local Area Lore.
Autumn: Read book on Parma Magica. 11xp, Parma -> 2 (1)
Winter: Read book on Magic Theory. ? xp.

Spring: Covenant service. Probably setting up labs? If so, 2xp MT.
Summer: Read book on Magic Theory. ? xp.
Autumn: Local Area Lore.
Winter: Read book on Magic Theory. ? xp.

I'm treating the time spent on the Local Area lore as Tremere House service - they've sent him out to be a scout, and developing knowledge of the local terrain is explicitly listed as an example of a duty that falls to young magi. If he gets given other duties, it's likely to change (although he'll still spend at least a bit of time exploring).

Similarly on the Tremere front, Gregorius will have a book on MT on loan. I'd prefer a level 5 summa, but that's presumably subject to what he can get. What's the quality?

What are my options going to be for Local Area Lore? Is it just Practice at 7xp, or can I get teaching/training? (Teaching has slight non-mutually intelligble languages issues). If he can get teaching, what will this cost him time/resoucewise? Presumably he can get a bit of teaching from Theodoric for 10xp per season up to a cap of level 2?

Should I actually be posting this is Character Development/ somewhere else?

Since we're using the Correspondences rules, there are a few people Gregorius will be writing letters to on a regular basis. Some of these are more likely to fall under "Correspondence" than others:

  • Carolus, his fellow apprentice at Apuseni, and companion to Alcimus' brother, Ferox. Carolus is a magical beasts specialist, so discussion will usually be of Magic Lore.
  • Sylvanus, his pater. Still thinking about what he's actually likely to correspond on. Sylvanus is skilled in Intellego, Rego, Mentem and Vim.
  • Boustaphan, the Tremere Tribune for the Theben tribunal. Gregorius chiefly writes to him with reports on the situation at the covenant, and for instructions. Potential Profession: Soldier and Order of Hermes Lore xp. [MTKnife, let me know if you'd rather have a different magus as Gregorius' contact here, either because Boustaphan isn't the Tribune, or because he's corresponding with someone more junior.]

I haven't decided on the amount, but yes, assume adventure XP's.

This is probably the right thread--or should we make a new one for Character Advancement? I'd rather not confuse newbies by cluttering Character Development with this.


If Gregorius wanted to indulge Alcimus, it would be reasonable to assume that they hunted during their trip, and especially while at Gigas, which means the two of them might have found some vis for Alcimus, perhaps even in the form of a magical rabbit or two that Alcimus was able to catch for himself.

The level 2 aura doesn't extend more than a mile in any direction, but the level 1 aura...well, you're not sure yet how far it goes. As long as he's on the covenant grounds half the time and in the low aura the rest, he'll be OK


I've created this topic to avoid seasonal advancement getting lost in the character development thread.

Slightly revised version of Gregorius' plans. May need to be adjusted again if we're putting Winter at the start of the year.

Spring: ? Adventure xp? 5xp to Local Area Lore, +?
Summer: Read book on Magic Theory. ? xp.
Autumn: Read book on Parma Magica. 11xp, Parma -> 2 (1)
Winter: Read book on Magic Theory. ? xp.

Spring: Covenant service. Probably setting up labs? If so, 2xp MT. May be writing up spells for covenant library instead (2xp Latin).
Summer: Read book on Magic Theory. ? xp.
Autumn: Local Area Lore.
Winter: Reading Rego Summa. 15 xp in Rego.

Rereading the Correspondance rules, they state that a magus "can only gain benefit from one a season, which must be associated with the magus' research or reading...A magus gains an extra experience point in each season in which he is engaged in useful correspondance." Based on that, my understanding is that (as a rule of thumb), you can only gain correspondance experience if you could gain normal experience in the same subject that season? I think that's a little different to how it's been treated in character advancement pre-play.

Yes, but in that case you could get experience in Magic Theory - you've just chosen to take the Creo and Corpus instead.

OK. Bad example. Whoops. Let's say you teach Creo and correspond about about Creo magi. You are not supposed to be able to get experience in Creo from the teaching, but the correspondence certainly has a lot to do with what you're doing. So I would expect you could get +1 in Creo from the correspondence.

Okay, I agree that's reasonable.

Should we just do yearly advancement for grogs? It seems like the way to go to get the right balance of seasons worked versus seasons free.

Seems sensible, yes.

OK, sounds good.

Also, you'll need to decide on Story XP's for the two characters involved in the Faerie Regio story.


5xp for the Faerie Regio, unless that seems deeply at odds with campaign standard.

Leon the Hunter, as well.

Patrick's Proposed activities:

Spring: Adventure ?+3 XP. After helping in Chapter 1 stuff, he'll go hunting/scouting the area for magic beasties and vis sources. Local Area Lore, with Independent Study XP going to Magic Lore. Corresponds with Quaesitor Certioari*, Sophos/new Cult Contacts. These correspondences are ostensibly about looking for magi who might trade Longevity Potions for hunting trophies, but the details about the possible trophies yield Correspondence XP to Magic Lore.

Summer: Reads Research Notes on the Aegis of the Hearth, by Notatus and others. Mastery tractatus on Aegis of the Hearth, quality 11. Downtime spent continuing to hunt, exploring the Delta region. Corresponds with Quaesitor Certioari*, cult contacts (any better suggestions from other PCs?).

Autumn and Winter: Reads Discipline and Restraint, by Amphelisia Tremendi. Rego summa, level 16, quality 15 for 1.5 seasons. Half season lost due to Servant of the River Delta duties. (Any suggestions for Correspondence XP going somewhere besides Rego?)

(That's number-fudging on a grand scale, btw. He can only gain half the summae's worth in the second season anyway.)

  • Certioari, fillia of a prominent Queasitor of Iberia. The young Guernicus passed her Gauntlet five years after Patrick did, she initially approached Patrick because he was the first magus she had met (as a journeyman) who had a family and still acted like he loved them. She was worried about the obligations of Queasitorial duty getting in the way of finding a husband, and their early letters spoke much about child-rearing in a covenant. They lost touch during Patrick’s prolonged grief, but have recently begun corresponding again. Time has hardened both of them, and it is evident in their letters. (corresponded thus far in Intellego, Mentem, CoH. )

It's been far too long since I've looked at the cult info, so I need to look up who his cult contacts are.

Patrick needs a Longevity Ritual by the end of this year, so I'll need some input on how his efforts to look for one and find game to trade for it have been going before I can pick how he spends the year. In broad terms, he'll either focus on hunting for magic beasts, capturing and possibly taming them, to make good on his bargain, or he'll be reading the Creo and Corpus summae while desperately trying to acquire the resources to cast it himself (in which case, we'll be having a discussion about the effects of trying to add numerological Rego reqs for perfection of form, a la Scribe the Perfect Circle).

I had nominally claimed Miklos as my companion character, but had yet to use him.

Leon's XP will be spent on local language and area lore. Assuming no one wants to perform mental experiments on him.

Edit: Clarified things now that I've had some sleep. These changes are marked.

Actually, I just looked up our library and the rules for Aging & Longevity Potions. It doesn't seem like as big a risk as I thought, and in 8 seasons he can read through the Creo and Corpus books, bringing his Longevity lab total up to 44, which seems like a pretty respectable first LP, and only after one or two aging rolls.

So, revised plans:

Spring: Adventure ?+3 XP. If any of the other magi are interested in a joint project, he'd like to continue draining the caves, hoping to find that rumored Stone Cutting Knife. Elsewise, he'll go hunting/scouting the area for magic beasties and vis sources. Local Area Lore, with 3 Independent Study XP going to Magic Lore. Corresponds with Quaesitor Certioari*, Sophos/new Cult Contacts. These correspondences are ostensibly about looking for magi who might trade Longevity Potions for hunting trophies, but the details about the possible trophies yield 1 Correspondence XP to Magic Lore.

Patrick will also get some livestock for the covenant from our village friends (probably have Leon do it), specifically poultry and some milking creatures (goats?). From my modern perspective, the poultry is most likely chickens. He'll get twice the number of chickens we need, and feed half of them with his Trough of Alterations to see what sort of mutants he can create -- while the possible source of vis is valuable, he's really looking for any interesting mutations which will breed true.

This means we'll need someone in the covenant to look after the animals. One of the unclaimed servants, perhaps? Or should we draft a local?

Summer and Autumn: Reads Principia Fabricata by Portia Verditii. Creo summa, level 9 quality 15, which will max out the book. Downtime spent continuing to hunt/explore, focusing on the Delta region (which hopefully fulfills his Servant of the Delta duties). While he corresponds, it is mostly a matter of seeking buyers and whatnot. Possibly, he gets 2xp of Correspondence (pun!) in either Latin or Prof(Scribe) -- given the quality of the book, the handwriting must be very impressive.

Winter: If there's no one else to do the casting, he'll read the Aegis Mastery tractus (or memorize a higher Aegis, if available -- his is 20) and cast the Aegis. If that's taken care of, he'll start on Blood and Tears, by Lacrimadia Bonisagi. Corpus summa, level 14 quality 14. Aegis/Corpus Correspondence with his new local Euclidean Cult contact, maybe? Distracted by Delta Duties, but not so bad as to affect his study totals. 12xp to Aegis Mastery OR 15xp total to Corpus.

1227: He spends all year reading Blood and Tears, and corresponding with his new Corpus buddy for 60xp. Distracted (no penalty to study) by Delta Duties. When the goats have their kids, Patrick will add the oldest males to his Trough experiments. (Originally, I said the youngest, but after doing some research, it seems like very few people like to eat old goat meat -- possibly, it might be easy for Patrick to acquire old, surly goats to experiment upon, on the cheap around here).

Looking into 1228: 1-2 seasons left on Blood and Tears. 1 Season, The Creation of Unnatural Objects in the Absence of an Ideal Form, by Plinius Bonisagi, Creo Tractatus, Quality 10. 1 Season, casting his own longevity ritual, when he'll need at least 8 vis.

Tangent: Did we ever turn on that Hypocaust? I'm pretty sure it's one of our Healthy Features.

Edit: calculated XP math

Oh, but it's sooo amusing.


I never read it as implying that it had to be associated with the magus' reading or research that season--only that it has to be associated generally.


For grogs, and companions for that matter, you don't have to take their seasons literally. I would like 4 seasons planned out a year, though, and the seasons distinct, so that if one season is displaced by a story, we know which XP's don't apply.


Miklos: Still waiting on input from Tasia on grog activities. But if we tell the grogs to only speak Latin from now on, it would be Local Area Lore (Source Quality 7), Teaching (exposure 2), Latin (Source Quality 8 until he gets to 5), Reading, to represent each year. Books might be the tractii on Ukraine Area Lore, and Code of Hermes ("It's a bit stuffy for my tastes," says Miklos. "Can we get another biography?")

Leon: If he can hunt with a local Kipchak tribe, then it's 4 seasons of Local Language (Source 8 * 1.25 Linguist = 10), and 4 seasons of Local Area Lore (Source 7). If he can't, then call it 4 seasons of Craft:Wood (Source 4).

....he says, in the one game where I'm not playing a Verditus lab rat.