The Invisible Eye Revealed - Do or Die

This and following posts.

The Invisible Eye Revealed (ArM5, p. 157) claims to be (base effect), but is distinctly at odds with the InVi guidelines (ArM5, p. 158).
It even gives it's legacy spiel about Intelligo spells being hard to detect, but there's no trace of this in any guideline I've been able to find.

Clearly this needs a line of errata, either to remove this spell, or to give a guideline that it could actually follow, but which one?

for one like this particular piece of legacy, but which piece of errata should we be trying to pitch to mr Chart?

I think it's not a good idea to require progressively higher spells to detect progressively more powerful effects. It's both counterintuitive and inconsistent with the fact that, the more powerful the effect, the easier it is to detect its traces once it's expired. So, I'd stick with the current guidelines, and change the spell.

However, the original spell was probably designed to make it progressively harder to detect a scryer the more powerful the scryer was -- it should probably be easier to detect if your apprentice is spying on you, than if an archmage specializing in Intellego is. So I'd add to the fix the stipulation that, in line with the Muto Vim requirements, to detect a magical effect through Intellego Vim you should have to beat its penetration with that of the InVi effect. It gives a whole new meaning to "penetrate a disguise"!

I don't believe the last phrase of 'The Invisible Eye Revealed': "A special spell is required because most Intellego spells are designed to be subtle, and they are more subtle at higher levels." Simply removing it could be a low priority erratum, yes.

Otherwise 'The Invisible Eye Revealed' does things which are not possible with the ArM5 InVi Guidelines, with 'Sense of the Lingering Magic' or 'Sight of the Active Magics'.
Indeed, if magus A observes maga B by - say - an 'Image from the Wizard Torn' sitting on an hilltop three miles away, by its wording B's 'The Invisible Eye Revealed' is triggered, if of sufficiently high level, and B should get a lot of information about how she is being scried upon from three miles away as well.
Writing a Guideline for this is certainly hard - so I would understand if The Invisible Eye Revealed' would just remain the solitaire it is now, and the Guideline it is based on directly derived from the - emended - spell description by the troupe, if needed.


In the original thread, Tellus, you mention seeking more opinions. Well, here's mine.

I quite like 'The Invisible Eye Revealed'. However its guideline should be incorporated in the list of base effects, perhaps by an explanation that Intellego magics are tricky (not fully integrated into Hermetic magic theory, I believe?) and are not covered by the Level 5 guideline.

I would be happier with Ezzelino's suggestion that detecting Intellego spells should depend on the relative penetrations, rather than the raw level. Why should a scrying spell that lasts for a moon be harder to detect than one that lasts for sun?

To my understanding, the focus of 'The Invisible Eye Revealed' is rather refined analysis than detection - so limiting it by the level of the effect to analyze does not look strange to me.
'The Invisible Eye Revealed' is a very important spell, because it can be cast about everywhere without risking to break the Code of Hermes by scrying on other magi: if the caster is made aware of something by it, that thing was already scrying, and its initiator did forfeit his/her immunity already.


I disagree. The range of The Invisible Eye is [strike]Touch[/strike] Personal. Both examples given are about spells that target the caster directly. If my familiar mouse is observing you from hiding, The Invisible Eye will reveal nothing, though it certainly counts as magical "scrying" according to the Code. The same would be true if I were to project my image with Image from the Wizard Torn, or to sneak upon you invibly.

Sight of the Active Magics also "analyzes" spells, revealing their Technique and Form, but it does not make use of a "progressive" guideline. Also, I seriously doubt that a R:Per, T:Ind version of "Sight of the Active Magics" that allowed a magus to detect if he's under foreign magical effects would count as "scrying on other magi", even if it did reveal that someone else had cast upon you a spell you were unaware of. Note that the Quaesitores have a similar spell to detect magical tampering on the caster mind, and that HoH:TL also points out that "self-scrying" is perfectly ok, even if it gains information about other magi, and even if it applies to a Covenant scrying its own grounds rather than a magus scrying himself.

My copy of the corebook has it at R: Per, T: Touch.
Doesn't really invalidate the rest of your argument, but...

You are indeed right (in this one case :smiley:). Thanks for pointing it out. I really meant Per, and have now fixed it.

Not So. 'The Invisible Eye Revealed' reads "... a magus being spied upon with Enchantment of the Scrying Pool might feel wet fingers, ...". And, as you can easily verify from ArM5 p. 122, 'Enchantment of the Scrying Pool' does not target persons, but bodies of water - from which one can then spy on a magus, who, when casting 'The Invisible Eye Revealed', might feel the wet fingers. :sunglasses:

As I showed just above, 'The Invisible Eye Revealed' does not only reveal effects cast onto its caster.


This is seriously iffy (and the fact that Enchantment of the Scrying Pool is non-Hermetic only makes things muddier). The Invisible Eye Revealed has Target:Touch. So whatever spell the caster detects must be touching him, or he would not be able to detect it with his sense of touch. While it's counterintuitive that the Scrying Pool should "radiate" magic onto everything within sight of it, it's the only interpretation consistent with the Target of Invisible Eye Revealed.

Though the more I look into the Invisible Eye Revealed, the more it seems a good idea to just remove it!

Target: Touch does not imply Range: Touch. It just specifies, that touch is the sense by which the information obtained by the spell is conveyed. For spells bestowing magical senses by ArM5 p. 113f "the range of the spell is the range to the recipient". Hence you can e. g. also taste a spell affecting your mind or hands, but not your tongue, with HoH:TL p. 75 'Bitter Taste of Betrayal'.

Why should 'Enchantment of the Scrying Pool' "radiate" magic that is detected at a certain place? You invent here a Guideline first to then reject it.
I noted before, that

Ezzelino, you are muddling around in complicated stuff, even involving ArM legacy and non-Hermetic effects. Expressions of desperation don't advance the subject of this thread: you need to carefully read and understand a text in its context first, before requesting errata.


One Shot, you may want to read carefully the description of the of magical senses in core book. The information gained through a magical sense "is subject to the same limitations as the mundane sense. Thus, a magical sense that works with the sense of smell is very bad at giving direction, and can be avoided by staying upwind of the sensor...". Thus, a magical sense that works through touch does not work unless whatever is sensed touches the sensor.

Because it is detected by Touch, and thus must be physically touching the sensor.

Uhm, do I? I'm more creative than I realize!

I disagree; Invisible Eye Revealed does nothing that the current guidelines disallow, except using a different level calculation.

Well, I wish these were the things about which to despair :smiley:
One Shot, maybe you should take your own advice, and read carefully yourself before rebuking others?

The quote is right, but your conclusion from it is not - which is easiest shown by several canon spells not conforming with it. In general, it is pretty easy to find some quote in a game book, take it out of context, interpret it anew and show that the rest of the game does not conform with it and hence has to be changed, errataed, scrapped, whatever. In this case, let's just look at ArM5 p.118 'Shiver of the Lycanthrope', which makes the caster sense lycanthropy - that clearly cannot touch him.

But let's look at the text carefully again (with underscores from me): "Each magical sense target grants the recipient information through one of his senses. The information is easily distinguished from mundane information coming through the same sense, but is subject to the same limitations as the mundane sense. Thus, a magical sense that works with the sense of smell is very bad at giving direction, and can be avoided by staying upwind of the sensor, ... ."

Of course, the abstract - i. e. media-independent - information obtained by the magical sense will often be such, that the target sense does not and cannot normally carry it. You see magical auras normally not visible, you hear the truthfulness of a statement, even if the speaker made sure he gave no hints in his voice or way of speaking, you smell traces of magic that have no physical substance which could affect your smell sensors - and you feel a touch from where there is no object whatsoever if somebody scries at you, or feel your skin crawling when target of an 'Intangible Tunnel'. So ArM does not limit the abstract information you can get through certain senses explicitly.

Still, the mundane senses themselves are limited, and these limitations apply to the magical senses as well. E. g. wind does prevent you from smelling the magic traces that are upwind, and 'Bitter Taste of Betrayal' does not work if your mundane sense of taste has been numbed. And a magic touch sense can only make you feel touches, which are necessarily close to you.

What is now by ArM5 p. 157 the abstract information that you can get by 'The Invisible Eye Revealed' through magic touch sense, if somebody scries on you with 'Enchantment of the Scrying Pool' from - say - 300 yards distant in a lake? You "feel wet fingers", you might feel them from a certain direction, with a certain intensity or wetness - but you cannot determine the distance from where they are triggered. Yes, you know that scrying affected you, and you can guess at the means and direction, but will be hard-pressed to find the scrying point in the lake with that magic sense spell. So the spell needs to analyze quite a lot of the 'Enchantment of the Scrying Pool' effect 300 yards away to present you with the feel of "wet fingers".

Well, the current ArM Level Guidelines clearly do not exclude the potential existence of others, and we find a few new ones in every second ArM book, which clearly were not 'disallowed' before. So I think we always agreed here indeed. That we currently do not have a Level Guideline for 'The Invisible Eye Revealed' is - I should think - also agreed. But I would be surprised if you thought it is easy to devise a Guideline for this spell.


Actually, the spell you use as an example seems to contradict what you say: "You feel a sudden shiver if you are touching a person or beast that is actually a lycanthrope."

Exactly -- but note that an "intangible" effect must still come in contact with you to be perceived through a Target:Touch spell. With Target:Touch, you must touch an object to sense if it's magical, or touch a beast or animal to sense if it's a lycanthrope. That is why you must be touching a magical effect to be aware of it. If someone looks at you through the eyes of a mouse a few paces away (using Intellego Animal), you won't be aware of the scrying.

Thus, if we assume that The Invisible Eye a) employs Target:Touch according to the description on p.114 and b) can detect when someone is scrying on you with Enchantment of the Scrying pool, then the magic of Enchantment of the Scrying pool must necessarily reach all the way to touch you. This seems counterintuitive to me, because Enchantment of the Scrying Pool seems to work by allowing the caster to see "through the eyes" of a body of water -- exactly like the mouse example above. But if a) and b) above are both true, this is evidently not the case.

Let me make myself clear: the current guidelines allow you to produce a spell that provides all the information provided by "The Invisible Eye Revealed", with a different level. In particular, you can "simulate" The Invisible Eye Revealed of arbitrarily high level with a Level 25 InVi spell. That would be Base 5 (detect any active magic), +1 Conc, +1 Target:Touch, +2 reveals magnitude and Tech+Form (or non-hermetic equivalent). You could add one more magnitude if you thought that The Invisible Eye was more specific -- but I'd say it is not even though from the description it's not completely clear.

What the magic touch sense of the spell senses is lycanthropy - not the being which is clearly visible and touchable without the spell as well. Apparently you meant something quite different from what you said, and claimed to conclude, with "a magical sense that works through touch does not work unless whatever is sensed touches the sensor". Then you should also formulate what you meant, and try to derive it from your quote. You might see how contorted the wilful derivation gets, when you need to distinguish between information, magical sense and mundane sense cleanly, and make it work for most of the canon magic sense spells.

Define and derive it cleanly, if you can - and then we may discuss it. And note that an 'intangible' effect is unlikely to touch you - by its very name.

The spell description of 'The'Invisible Eye Revealed', however, tells me that it does a lot more than you "simulate", of course.


OK, so what is the most effective way of detecting scrying and getting some clue as to what sort of magus might be doing it? Bearing in mind most Arcane connection range scrying spells from the main rules are level 30 or 35.

That's the tricky thing.

And that is just one of the reasons, why.

The Invisible Eye Revealed' is a good start, because legit and sweeping. But for some magi finding out about the scrying magus might quickly take the backseat behind surviving his onslaught. :wink:


Here's one consideration that might make things clearer. Hermetic magic is Aristotelian, not Platonic. In other words, it does not sense lycanthropy; it senses lycanthropes -- as lycanthropes, distinguishing them from non-lycanthropes. It does not sense love; it senses lovers -- as lovers, distinguishing them from non-lovers. This is very convenient, because it means that the position of a target is generally much better defined.

It seems pretty simple to me. In order to sense lycanthropy in a beast with Target:Touch, you must touch the beast. To sense it with Target:Vision, you must be able to see the beast. And so on. If that's not clear to you, I'm sorry but I can't help you. It's rather pointless to try and give a formal definition without using similar levels of formalism throughout the rest of the book. One could do it, but the whole book would get pointlessly legalistic.

"Intangible" in this case means not (mundanely) perceivable by touch even when in touch. You should not confuse the positional meaning of touch ("when in touch"), with the sensory meaning of touch ("perceivable by touch"). Simply put, using Target: allows you to discriminate objects with a certain property when and only when you could do so if the only species the objects emitted were one appropriate to that you could mundanely perceive. Again, I think the current level of formalism is more than sufficient to discuss this. Increasing the level of formalism could be done, but it's not really worth the effort for I what I'm getting out of this discussion -- sorry :slight_smile:

I fail to see what more it does. Could you provide an example?

The point is not, that this isn't the case most of the time. Indeed, you often need to correlate your mundane and your magical perceptions to understand what a magic sense tells you.

As you will see below, it is not clear.

That's better than above, for sure. But there are 'objects' analyzed by canon Target: spells - like minds, spells, magical effects and regio boundaries - that do not emit any species. Even thinking how they might do it doesn't make sense.
Following you, to sense something with Target:Taste that affects your own mind, you would have to taste your mind? Well, how do you do that when relying on 'Bitter Taste of Betrayal' to detect some InMe magic cast onto you by another magus then? And when using the same spell to detect some ReCo magic cast onto your foot (T:Part) by another magus, would you have to put your foot into your mouth for it? And of course: why would that be necessary, and fit into the game system?

I did already, and it is written into the spell description on ArM5 p. 157: "... a magus being spied upon with Enchantment of the Scrying Pool might feel wet fingers, ... "