Spell Design: Spliting the Mind (Personalitiy Traits)

Another topic gave me the following spell idea. What do my sodales think? Isn't it... interesting? No, I swear I won't try to execute this... yet...

Split the Mind of the Confused Magus (Mu[CrRe]Me 60)
(MuMe guideline 15, D:Year, +1 Cr, +1 Re, +1 Complex effect, +2 create a group of minds)

Split your mind, using each piece as an anchor to create a complete mind similar to your own. You don't duplicate the gift. Each mind has one of your personality traits, and yourself become completely devoid of personality through the duration of the spell.

The created minds think and decide as if it they were you, but the decision is tinted by their personality trait. They can obtain new memories but aren't capable of learning, and your capacity of learning isn't altered by this spell. When the spell ends the magus must make a concentration roll to avoid being deranged by the merging of the minds.

This spell was created by a (clearly unhinged) Criamon trying to remove his conflicting personality traits to allow for dispassionate contemplation of the Enigma.

My rationale: Muto splits the mind, Creo completes your own mind after the split (and fill in the others if needed), Rego moves them outside of your head (maybe this is not needed). Additional magnitudes are required to create more minds (if desired for some reason). The total number of minds is limited by your personality traits (you need something to split, after all; I'm thinking that traits A+3, B-2, C+1 would become 6 new minds, three with A+3, 2 with B-2, one with C+1).

The minds can be "stored" somewhere if desired (eg. inside a jar with a ReMe circular ward). If not put away I think they would remain close to the original mind/magus, but invisible if no InMe or Second Sight is used.

So, can I have a piece of your mind (pun intended) about this?

I think with a spell like this you seriously start to run up against the Limit of the Soul. When we say "the mind" in this context we're really talking about two distinct things that are both required for human thought:

  • The five wits, which alone are essentially the cunning stat some beings have in place of intelligence, and which can be fully interacted with by hermetic magic.
  • The soul, which provides reason and intellect. This cannot (currently) be created or altered using hermetic magic.

As I see it to get effects which alter the whole of the mind and create, for lack of a better term, more intellect you need to do stuff to the soul, and that requires a breakthrough. Otherwise you can only deal with the wits, which are insufficient to provide more than cunning. That's not an insurmountable barrier though, depending on whether your saga considers the Limit of the Soul to be breakable (or bendable).

In terms of implementation I think that the personality trait split is interesting but wouldn't it make more sense, if you're "splitting" the mind for it to actually divide up the characteristic points of the mind? Like if the mental characteristics are representation of the wits, and you split those wits in half, then surely you're essentially splitting the characteristics between the two parts?

Either way the Creo part seems lowballed to me. Improving the wits (i.e. increasing the mental characteristics) is the closest hermetic magic can do to repairing a mind overall, and the guidelines for that start at 30 just to get you to a +0, never mind trying to get to the +3 lots of magi have. I think the spell should be at least 15 levels higher to account for that, but realistically probably more in the order of 30-40.


Agreed, but I'm not thinking of creating a soul. Hermetic magic is already capable of creating minds in a limited way (and only now I remember that The Shadow of Human Life adds +6 magnitudes for that, +1 indeed is to little).

Splitting the value was my first iteration, but when thinking about it the mental image of a Criamon meditating with a large group of clearly deranged "ghosts" (I imagine the minds as spectral heads with the magus face) swarming around him, each one with a strong personality, to be a bit cooler than two or three ghosts, or a swarm of mildly emotional ghosts. Since the minds have little practical value (I mean, this guy can cast at least a lvl 60 ritual, anything these minds can do he can probably achieve in a better way) I figured it wouldn't have much impact. But I'd rather keep it hermetically consistent, and I agree that several minds with high personality stretches things a bit.

Does it seem feasible to drop the +1 for complexity with +6 Creo? The end result would be:

Split the Mind of the Confused Magus (Mu[CrRe]Me 80)
(MuMe guideline 15, D:Year, +6 Cr, +1 Re, +2 create a group of minds)

The result of (ArM5 p.129f) The Shadow of Life Renewed is very limited:

In any case, the revived person is not truly alive and is unable to gain experience points.

The result of (ArM5 p.144) The Shadow of Human Life

has limited freedom and simulated intellect.

So both are of no use to create minds to

I do have to admit, even if it's a little iffier in terms of the theory behind it, splitting based on personality traits does sound like it would be quite fun in play.

Maybe instead of it being a purely mentem effect (which has issues as already discussed due to the limit of the soul) it could incorporate the idea of an Eidolon (emotion spirit) from RoP:M? So rather than actually creating human minds, you're "manifesting" your personality traits as spirits which share some of your knowledge and one aspect of your personality?

Functionally the end result is pretty much exactly the same, but it's maybe more within the bounds of what hermetic magic can do without a big breakthrough. The base guideline for summoning a spirit like that is ReMe 15, +4 for arcane connection (the caster), so I think it would end up something like a level 70 Re(Mu)Me effect?