UPDATE 18th May 2020 for anyone coming to this thread fresh - the ruleset for MR I finally settled on after feedback is given in full detail in the 79th post below. The main points of it are:
Unless penetrated, magic resistance has four effects: (I actually think 1 and 2 could potentially be combined into one, but for clarity I have included them both)
- Any spells targeted at you or at something of which you are a part (e.g., a group or room), do not affect you. [exactly as in ArM5 RAW]
- Magic resistance nullifies the force applied by any magic that reaches you. In this case, it does not dispel the magic, but it nullifies any force exerted on you by the magic. Something akin to a magical armour that suffuses a magus. This is a crucial part, and is explained in more detail in the 79th post.
- Any magic that attempts to extract information directly from you fails to do so. This means, for example, that magic cannot read your thoughts, or sense where you are or what your state of consciousness is.
- It makes you aware when something under the influence of an active magical effect comes within one inch of you.
What this means for common critiques of magic resistance:
- No pink dot problem. The pink dot is not exerting any force on you, and even if it was, it would only be the pink dot that was nullified – the mundane sword would do damage as normal.
- No boulder problem. A small pebble turned into a huge boulder and dropped on your head would do the same damage as the small pebble would have done (none).
- No poison-wine weakness. If wine is turned into poison or poison turned into wine you will sense (as pick it up or move it to your mouth) that it is under a magical effect, so you will probably avoid drinking it. If it is wine turned to magical poison, then even if you do drink it, it will not harm you.
- No "ground turned to water, then change it back and entomb the magus" weakness. You will fall into the water, but it will not be able to drown you, restrict you, stop you casting spells, or make you wet, and you can move in it easily and freely (to get out, for example).
End of update, and here is my original post that started this thread:
Hi - I know there is a huge history of debate around parma magica and how to get a consistent set of rules that work. It seems no matter what you choose, you either have the boulder problem or the pink dot problem (There is also the poison problem - wine turned to poison by magic, the magus drinks it and it has bypassed the PM). For 5th ed., David Chart said he thought the pink dot problem was the one to go with, as it couldn't get a magus killed like the boulder problem.
Now it seems to me there's a fairly simple solution for all 3 problems, and, as I'm certain it must have been proposed and discussed before, I'm posting to ask if someone can tell me what the problem with it is, before I mess my campaign up by using it. So, the idea is that if a magical effect fails to penetrate PM then:
- Anything propelled by magic slows/stops, such that it doesn't reach the magus and cause any harm (this is standard rules in 5th ed.)
- Any spells or spell effects with the magus as the target have no effect (again, standard I think).
- Anything created entirely by magic (e.g., magical fire) stops when it gets within an inch of the magus, and goes around him/her, causing no harm (standard, except for the emphasis on entirely)
- Any damage or damage bonus caused by a magical effect is reduced to zero. (non-standard, but this is the part that seems to solve many problems)
So with this system:
- A boulder made into a stone then dropped on a magus would just remain a stone and harmlessly drop on the magus. The PM would do nothing at all. No problem.
- Magically created fire, water, insects, etc. are protected against. Good.
- A magus who drinks wine transformed into poison would be able to go ahead and drink it, and would not know anything was wrong, but they would sense their PM activate (unless penetrated) to prevent the poison causing any harm. No problem.
- An enchanted sword would strike the magus just as any ordinary sword, but any magical increase to damage would be reduced to zero, and any instilled effects that made the magus a target of a spell-effect would not activate. A pink dot would not stop a sword hitting a magus. No problem.
So that seems quite satisfactory to me - what am I missing? The only thing I can think of is that people don't like the idea of a specific effect protecting against damage? Though that seems intuitively sensible to me, given the idea of a protective shield.
Thanks in advance for any help.