'targeted penetration'

A new question came up about penetration last night.

We were preparing to fight a dragon, so were grabbing all the bonuses to penetration that we possibly could.

With fixed arcane connection, nickname, daily horoscope and crafted likeness I got a quite nifty penetration score of 56 before we've even started working out casting totals.

This penetration obviously applied to any spells cast on the dragon.

Which was fine. But, killing the dragon was a task set by my Bjornear mystery cult, so I wanted to finish it off in my heartbeast form of a bear.

As my heartbeast, I'm a natural animal, so MR doesn't stop me mauling the dragon. But it's too big for me to damage. So I cast one of my other spells, to grow to a size 8 bear. Normally in this form, I can't get past MR or parma, because the spell level is so high that I just have no penetration.

So the question came up, can I use the dragons arcane & sympathetic connections when I cast the 'grow humungous' spell on myself, to add 'targeted penetration' to the spell?

ie I'd be able to maul the dragon through it's MR, but I wouldn't be able to maul it's friend the kracken, because whilst the spell was cast with lots of penetration, it was penetration specific to the dragon, and not to anything else.

Sorry, this question ended up being long and rambling.. in a nutshell:

Can I use arcane connections to a third party, when casting a spell on myself, so that I can later maul that person with penetration?

Last night we temporarily house ruled that on that occasion I could maul the dragon, and would base a more permanent house rule on what you guys say here.

Ryce Dragonslayer

I would definitely rule it to go as your SG ruled it at the time.

You had a lot of sympathetic connections and whatnot to break through that Dragon's MR, and by using that on your "Become Ginormous Bear" spell, you effectively had a penetration of 56 + whatever you rolled against that Dragon.

If the kraken had shown up you'd probably be toast.

That's how I see it anyway..

Hi Ryce;

I only recently became aware about the distinction between when you can and when you cannot boost your penetration with AC, etc., and it led to parts of the discussion in this thread.

Personally my preference is clear: always to allow boosted penetration. My remaining challenge is to figure how I'll go about it in practice, what with having possible different penetration of the same spell versus different MRs. I'm considering suggesting a HR to my troupe that if a spell has boosted penetration then that spell's effect has penetration of '0' toward all other MRs.

No, AC's don't work for third party penetration, just like you can't use them to increase the Penetration for Wards (HoH-Societates, p. 113).

What was the Dragon's might and what was your Penetration without the AC? I think that between Life Boost, Confidence, and the use of vis (don't forget vis!), you may have had Penetration anyway. Either hand wave it and say you are fine or retroactively spend some vis.

I wasn't thoroughly clear - it is purely my personal preference and it is on that basis I'll use it. It is however my impression that it is a HR in contradiction with the RAW.

Cross talk. I wasn't talking to you Jeppe, I kinda glanced over your post. I was speaking more directly to Ryce. I read his whole "How to kill a Dragon" thread, and it was all over by the time I got to the bottom (LOL, good job btw). I was going to emphicize the impotance of sword and spear (or in your case Ryce, tooth and claw).
My secondary suggestion would have been PeVi and a lot of vis. Maybe a little confidence, and certainly that Life Boost.
And always Master your main spell(s)

As a SG, I have made errors at critical moments, applying the rule wrong and retroactively figuring out how it all would have worked out anyway. The error was actually small, and within the range of being able to spend confidence to succeed.

And Ryce, you should be more careful with your grogs! Make sure you take care of their families :slight_smile:

So you can only use arcane connections to directly throw a spell through MR?

This means that without vis use it would be very hard to ward against a particular ghost/demon/fae even if you have arcane connections.

You'd be unable to get spells such as Blade of virulent flame, through another mages parma.

You'd be unable to create a magic circle to contain a powerful summoned demon.

This last one in particular seems wrong. I think the idea of scribing a circle with the demons true name and painting the ring itself in the demons own shed blood should give great bonuses to penetrate.

I think i too shall House rule permanently as i did originally (i was the GM in question).

To incoporate arcane connections and penetration modifiers you have to be from a specific group in ex-miscelanea mentionde in societas IIRC. I must admit I only skimmed through that section but there is a group that does 'warding' and they can get all those kind of modifiers.

This being in relation to your point about magic circles of course, not the other stuff.

That's the RAW. I'd House Rule around it if I were you.

That's why I think Wards shouldn't have to penetrate to begin with :wink:
The Colombae have the special ability to work around that and ward against a specific being.

That's why it's important to Master your spells and sharpen your Penetration ability.

Naw, there the Demon is the direct target. You're fine.

Aw, see, you're not a killer DM after all. I was totally wrong about you :slight_smile:

Yes. The bit in Societates (page 113) is specifically about wards, and arguably errata material (because it is clearly misleading to have wards be an exception in this way).

Thank you David. Both for popping by and for clearing this up. While I've never been shy to house rule anything it's always nice to know when it's actually in line with the intention behind the rules as written ([size=75]oh boy, why does 5th edition make it so darn hard for me to find something for house ruling! [/size]:smiley: ).