Speaking with the mediterranean sea

We are just in the beginning of a 5th ed saga. I missed 4th completely, and played a few sessions of 3rd. Back then I did suggest to my group that magic resistance should work the way it does now, and with the new rules it feels like Ars Magica is actually worth playing. Anyway; we have started on our first adventure, and I am currently running around with a companion that I start to like. My mage is still in the making though...

And then i found Voice of the lake (InAq 25) (p. 122).

Hmm, how about speaking with the mediterranean?

First try: base individual is 5 paces across. Add 5 magnitudes/zeroes and we have enough (I think). InAq 50.

WRONG! Size increase is by mass, not by radius. Crap...

Second try: base depth is two paces. We probably need 3 magnitudes for depth. And 5 + 6 for length, width. So 19 magnitudes. InAq 95. Ok. Reasonable level. I can sort of fix 65 from start with a focus, so it will take me a couple of years, but it's a worthy goal to be able to speak with the mediterrenean.

BZZZT! Above level 50 and thus a ritual. Not fun. A lvl 95 ritual and a duration of Conc. Not good.

Third try: Aha! Magic items don't have the level limit. Let's make a verditius.

And then I suddenly see this:

p113: INTELLEGO SPELLS: Not affected by Target size

Uh? Please help.

Right now I am thinking about a verditius with Focus in "speaking with the elements" and really good at In and Aq. Later he will add the rest of the elements. He should be able to reach lvl 95 kind of soon, and with an added level for part he could at least talk to the waters around greece or something. (btw is that a minor or a major focus?)

But it's the part about intellego spells and target size that really gets me.

Please explain this to me. Preferably without resorting to house ruling.


Of course it is :exclamation: :exclamation:

Besides the point of the rule mechanics the feel of the Mythic Europe setting and the originality of the approach to the magic Arts was really what always got me going. But the fantastic thing is that now it just keeps getting better...

At the moment I'm a bit too mindbogled to feeling able to solve the mechanics of your calculations, but generally speaking i find it a nice touch if it needs a grand ritual to address the whole of the Mediterranean. But on the other hand, size or not, I also find it appropriate that you ought to be able to only speak to a part of the sea - thus giving you less of a magnitude.

May Neptune smile upon your further journey!

My first note is that the spell guidelines are really guidelines, not hard and fast rules. While I'm sure that this does not come as news to you I'd like to reemphasize it because it seems that you're putting a great deal of effort into getting the spell "right" when there reall isn't any objective right answer (I admit that I could be wrong and may even come accross as patronising, if so please accept my sincere appologies and understand that this was not my intention). I and many of the others on this board have racked up many many posts debating spell level adjustments for special durations, when to throw in a complexity modifier and so on. But this is because the discussion is interesting for message board fodder, not because we (or at least I) think that it is crucial for the game.

My impression of the purpose behind intellego spells not being changed by target size is so "posing the silent question" can be cast on giants with the same spell as used on normal blokes, so that you can't a discount on "piercing the faerie vale" by casting it on a child or a midget.

I think that I concur with Furion in saying that a ritual in order to speak to the spirit of the entire mediterainian sounds cool.

I also believe that you could create a spell with target "part" and ask sections of the sea your questions.

The critical question for your spell is can the mediterainian be considered an individual? I think that this varies from game to game. Second, if it is an individual what does it know?

I wouldn't be so opposed to letting "voice of the lake" do the trick as listed in the rule book, but I'd make the Mediterainian sufficently unfocused on such trivial details as ships and creatures that the spell is not, as a rule, more useful when cast on the sea then when cast on a lake. The hope behind the guidelines was, I believe, to make all of the technique/forms interesting while making none of them greatly more or less powerful than the others. Ideally (but not in practice) spell level is directly proportional to the potential usefulness of the spell.

Actually, you're lucky, the Mediterranean is suitable for a Boundary target. Sure, it's a big one and requires a ritual, but a Boundary nonetheless.

Hmmmm, PeAq ... that would piss some people off. Too bad the wretched thing probably has a very significant Might, what with all the legends about and personifications of it.

Hi all.

I am the storyguide for Luna and the rest in our saga of six people.

First, i hope we will see Luna take a stab at talking with the Mediterranean sometime. When your Covenant is on a small island in the neighbourhood of Crete, knowing the sea is a wise thing.

I liked the concept that Erik described of how the usefullness of the "speaking with the Med" should be of the same magnitude as the spell "Voice of the lake". The difficulty diff is more in respect to size than anything else (Size matters when it comes to oceans, unlike living beings). Perhaps that is how it should be.

On the other hand:

I have made it very clear (i hope :slight_smile: ), that i want their magi/covenant to act behind the stage or to set the stage, but not be too much of the stage (well pretty much the Hermetic code actually), if they don't it wont be so much that the Order will punish them, but rather the "environment". So with that reasoning a InAq to talk with the Med is fine (how fine? we shall see...), a PeAq with the target of the Mediterranean is a monster no-no.


Well well, i have more trouble adjusting the AM3 adventure we are running at the moment to AM5. worrying over spell-balance is for tomorrow.

Anyway here is a related question:

InTe "Understanding the earthly sphere" (yes talking to Earth) possible or not? What will Satan say (living underground as everyone knows) when the Magus learns the location of Hell?


perhaps residents inside Intellego targets should be able to resist the magic?

You could try a Daimonic Pact...

Glaucus, Prophet of the Sea.

Magic Might: 15 (Aquam)
Characteristics: Int +2, Per +4, Pre -2, Com 0, Str +3, Sta +3, Dex +2, Qik +4
Size: +1
Personality Traits: Proud +2, Abrupt +2
Short Spear Init +4, Attack +9, Defense +9, Damage +8
Soak: +11 (seaweed and seashell armor)
Wound Penalties: -1 (1-6), -3 (7-12), -5 (13-18), Banished (19+)
Abilities: Area Lore: Mediterranean Sea 8, Augury 8
Sight of the Sea, 1 point, Init +4, Aquam: Glaucus can view any one location in the sea as if he was actually there, or cast any Intellego Aquam spell for just one might point.
Sight of the Sky, 1 point, Init +4, Auram: Glaucus can view any one location in the sea as if he was actually there, or cast any Intellego Auram spell for by spending one point per two magnitudes of equivalent Hermetic spell.
Calling the Wind and Sea, varies, Init +4, Aquam: Glaucus can cast any Rego Aquam, Creo Auram, or Rego Auram spell by spending 1 point per magnitude of equivalent Hermetic spell.
Vis: leaves 3 pawns of Aquam in seashells which remain when he is banished.
Appearance: Glaucus is a Daimon of the Mediterranean Sea. Born mortal, Glaucus lived the life of a fisherman and diver in Boeotia, Greece. He discovered a magical fountain whose waters transformed him into a merman when he next dove into the ocean. He has a green beard and is covered with seaweed and shells. He can only be summoned on the shores of the sea or in the open ocean.

Dunno if it helps, but it was an idea, and is roughly translated from Mysteries 4th. I offer it here as it never made it in to TMRE, but seesm directly useful in this context. I'd allow the teaching of high level InAq spells pertaining to the Mediterranean in a season if a Pact was made with, or for a one off you could call him up and bargain.

cj x