# Spontaneous Magic Question

I belive that I am going to be the biggest pain on the forum with all my questions - but please bear with me.

In regards to Spontaneous Magic - see if I have this right.

Lets just say I have a magus who has Creo 3 and Ignem 3 (along with Stamina 2 and Aura Modifyer of 2). I am in a bad situation so I want to just burn an opponent with flames (obviously) but I want to use spontaneous magic.

I want to do +10 Damage (which is Level 5)

Is this correct:
NON-FATIGUING SPONTANEOUS MAGIC

Casting Score = 3+3+2+2 = 10 but since this is non-fatiquing I would divide by 5 and get 2 so no go.

FATIGUING SPONTANEOUS MAGIC

Casting Score = 3+3+2+2 = 10

So 10 plus stress die (lets just say 7) = 17 then divide by 2 = 8.6 or 8.
So I could then do my +10 fire and take a fatigue level

So am I getting this? I have been reading and rereading the rules and I keep hoping and hoping for enlightenment.

This game is way to cool not to understand.

Thanks
Todd

You are correct in the way you've calculated the Casting Total (except 17/2 = 8.5 not 8.6) and you're right, you would lose a Fatigue Level and successfully cast a Level 5 spell.

However to do +10 damage to someone other than yourself you would need higher than a Level 5 spell. For all spells the base Range is Personal, the base Duration is Momentary, and the base Target is Individual. You would need to increase Range to at least Touch, otherwise the only person your spell could affect would be yourself (ouch).

But the point is, you've got the mechanics of spontaneous magic down. You will get the hang of designing spells on-the-fly with a little practice.

I know that's true in a previous edition--is it true in this one??? (That he
would be successful at all I mean)

Thanks

Now if someone could explain to me Arcane Connections - I will be very happy. I have a Master's degree and I have read all there is on Arcane Connections and I still don't get it

But endevour and keep on...

No, in 5th you need to be spot on or higher with Spont spells for success. With Formulaic spells you can be below (but within 10 of the target level) and be successful with the loss of fatigue. With Spont, sorry it would just fizzle.

That said, when casting Spont spells, if your final casting total (with roll) is sufficiently higher than the target level you were initially aiming at lets say you aimed for level 15 but managed a total of 20, then you can summarily decide to up one (in this case) or more (if roll is SIGNIFICANTLY higher) of Range, Duration or Target (From whatever base you had previously decided for one or more of them respectively).

This is explained on page 81-81 of the core book.

The spell in question is level 5. Do not confuse the damage (which happens to be +10) with the level of the spell (base 5, no modifiers for R/D/T).

As I pointed out, a useful spell would need to add extra magnitudes for Range, but if this Level 5 (Range:Personal) spell is what you really want, then the Casting Total of 8 is enough to cast it.

What part of Arcane Connections do you not understand?

Arcane Connections are generally pieces broken off from a larger whole. By having the piece, you can more easily affect the whole. This is a common principle of general (real-world) magic lore that is reflected in the Ars Magica rules.

Having an Arcane Connection lets you do one thing you normally can't: cast a spell on a subject whose location is unknown. It's as if by casting the spell on the piece, you affect the whole.

The reason you can't normally affect something if you don't know where it is, is because of a Hermetic Limit (called the Limit of Arcane Connection).

Where you may be getting confused is that Arcane Connections also help you penetrate Magic Resistance. Really that is a different, but overlapping, rule.

AC is used to multiply your character's penetration ABILITY.
You may get multipliing bonuses from many sources:

• first table (you can find the numbers in the column right.)
• second table
• mastery score if you mastered the particular spell you use and took a 'penetration' ability

First you have a multiplier of 1. Every bonus increases this multiplier. So if you have a +2 bonus (e.g. native horoscope) your multiplier is 1+2=3. If your penetration ability is 2, than the AC increases it to 3*2=6.
I think the penetration example on the page 84 is quite detailed.

Normally, a mage must "sense" a target in order to effect it- normally this implies being able to see it, but in theory you could hear, smell, taste, touch- whatever. That might be with mundane senses, or magically enhanced ones vis Intellego.

If you can't sense the target, you can still effect it with an Arcane connection. Also, AC's can aid in Penetration, if the target has Magic Resistance.

That's it in a nutshell. Break the shell, and we could be here all day...

Normally, a mage must "sense" a target in order to effect it- normally this implies being able to see it, but in theory you could hear, smell, taste, touch- whatever. That might be with mundane senses, or magically enhanced ones vis Intellego.

If you can't sense the target, you can still effect it with an Arcane connection. Also, AC's can aid in Penetration, if the target has Magic Resistance.

That's it in a nutshell. Break the shell, and we could be here all day...

Not entirely true, but basically, yes.

As far as Spont' magic, first you must define the "effect". This can be open ended- the example in the book is "to create the brightest light you can", but to take your example, it might be "cast Fire as far as I can". But the first step is to name the effect you're shooting for, and determine its (lowest) level.*

(* I've seen some Players make a list of their favorite tiny effects, so they aren't eternally re-inventing the same spell effect.)

If you "fatigue" yourself (divide by 2), you add a stress die and hope to beat the level you set for yourself. For "open ended" effects, that is the smallest possible to achieve that effect, and then go from there. In your example, it would be 5 (to create a fire on yourself), but perhaps hoping for 10 (touch, or Diameter duration) or even a lucky 15 (+2 Voice, or +1 Touch AND +1 Diameter?) to spread love directly onto someone else. Whatever. Use a loud voice and big gestures* for an additonal +2 (which then becomes +2/5), as every little bit may help. A well-chosen Focus can be a joy, too.
(* from table on page 83)

Otoh, if you do NOT fatigue yourself, you roll no douse, and just divide by 2 - more stable, more reliable, no botch, no chance for twilight, etc.

Normally, a mage must "sense" a target in order to effect it- this usually means being able to see it, but in practice you could hear, smell, taste, touch- whatever. That might be with mundane senses, or magically enhanced ones via Intellego.

If you can't sense the target, you can still effect it with an Arcane connection. Also, AC's can aid in Penetration, if the target has Magic Resistance.

That's it in a nutshell. Break the shell, and we could be here all day...

Not entirely true, but basically, yes.

As far as Spont' magic, you've got the basics, but the first step is to define the "effect" the mage wants. This can be open ended- the example in the book is "to create the brightest light you can", but to take your example, it might be to cast a +10 Fire, and then you can improve R/D/T after that. But the first step is to specifiy and calculate the effect you're shooting for, and determine its (lowest) level.* But Boxer's right in that if you don't meet this minimum level, you get nada (except for the fatigue - you still get that.)

(* I've seen some Players make a list of their favorite tiny effects, so they aren't constantly re-inventing the same spell effect, and they have a crib sheet to know what they can achieve.)

If you "fatigue" yourself (divide by 2), you add a stress die and hope to beat the level you set for yourself. For "open ended" effects, that is the smallest possible to achieve that effect, and then go from there. In your example, it would be 5 (to create a fire on yourself), but perhaps hoping for 10 (+1 Touch range, or +1 Diameter duration) or even a lucky 15 (+2 Voice, or +1 Touch AND +1 Diameter?) to spread the love directly onto someone else. Whatever. Use a Loud Voice and Big Gestures* for an additional +2 (which then becomes +2/5), as every little bit may help. A well-chosen Focus can be a joy, too.
(* from table on page 83)

Im beginning to the get the feeling you delight in being my pedantic nemesis Ch!

What I wrote was perfectly in line with the book, simply not the entirety of it since I was not inclined to reiterate what tc was perfectly capable of reading directly from the core rules on his own. I even provided him the page reference for his ease.

If and when longwinded explanations are absolutely necessary I would gladly make that effort.

BoXer and Cuchulainshound-
Between the two of you I am sure to get the mechanics of this game down - thank you and to all that pipe in with assistance.
This is by far the friendliest board I have ever visited - a tribute to all who participate.

Thus are created misperceptions that become the foundation of future misunderstanding of the rules as a whole.

And, nah, it's just that you're posts are handy. I'll quibble with anyone!

Quibble as you will but I do take offence at the suggestion that what I wrote was incorrect, especially given that I was writing directly from the cited section itself at the time.

Some of us just choose to employ a bit more economy of text unless otherwise requested.

(Tangential post to Address BoXer's concerns)

Ah- I am the other side of the coin (no news flash there!). But I never said you were incorrect- quite the opposite, I said "not entirely true"- which means what you say IS correct, but not the whole story. And the other half of the story was just as important, and does not intuitively follow from your "economical" statement.

Especially on the 'Net, where there are no spoken inflections, there are too many misinterpretations, too many opportunities and unintentional invitations to misread a statement. By phrasing it thusly, the implication could be read that you need to define a final product, and then it's do or die- that's not true. The Open Ended option does not require an "exact roll"- the better you roll, the better the effect. It's a "Is it true you've stopped beating your wife?" problem*- the misperceived premise of the statement is a trap from word one, even if the statement is flawless.

So- while what you say is absolutely correct for what it is, it's not "the whole Truth", and by omitting the open-ended option, it tends to sweep that under the carpet; thus it is in fact "correct", certainly not "incorrect", but also "not entirely true" if one reads that as all there is to it, which is how it was phrased.

I did not mean to disparage your contribution, but to build upon it, which is why I chose the word "entirely", rather than say something like "Eh, not so much" or "um... in a word, no", which I, unfortunately, seem to tend to do without hesitation when I deem someone actually mis-citing the RAW.

(* It is NOT (entirely) true that I, CH, have stopped beating my wife... because I would have had to start in order to stop. Flawed premise of an apparently clear and simple statement.)

Considering that the very next paragraph of the post which YOU then actually "Mis-cited", I went on to expound upon just that very open ended aspect which you chose to go on at length about.

Since, as you say, on the Net there is no way to judge intent other than choice of terms, I would suggest that you choose your terms more carefully (i.e. "not true", "mis-cited", etc.) when such is not the case. Whether or not a post is as exhaustive as you like is your problem to deal with or to add to as you see fit, but do so without besmirching the contributions of other serious contributors is all I ask.

Others than just myself may take it the wrong way. Nobody likes a show off or a know it all.

Peace.

Note: This is another example of 'If there was an example in the book...'

And...

Fight nice folks...

Certamen at sundown
In the park...