Verditius Runes

Now consider consistency across the line, too. Consider these:

  • Why can a Verditius not just say anything they ever craft is for enchantment so the toy wheel qualifies?

Well, that first paragraph is all about discussing Verditius magi making items for their own magic and them doing the enchanting. The first sentence is explicit on it being their own magic, and the second is specific about it being for items being enchanted. And if that's the case, the first paragraph does not at all allow a Verditius to just mundanely craft an item for someone else and leave Verditius Runes on it. That would be part of their enchantment process, which precludes just making a random item mundanely for some one else. Now, the second paragraph does allow Verditius magi to make items for others by opening them with Verditius Runes.

  • Why do we not see all magi with Talismans throughout the books?

There is not a single non-Verditius magus with a Talisman with Verditius Runes in all the books. Why not? If any mundane creation would have Verditius Runes, it would be quite inexpensive (generally way less than a season for a Verditius) to have this done, especially on the scale of investment for a Talisman. Is it that the magi are intentionally hamstringing themselves? Are they really not that clever despite mostly having high Int? Now note the consistency. If the paragraphs are as I say above, then the Verditius would need to open the item to provide the Verditius Runes, and that would preclude the item from being a Talisman for someone else.

  • Why do people go to Verditius magi to open items?
    While it is possible this could be because they lack the Magic Theory to open an item, most items aren't at this scale. And if Verditius Runes can be provided mundanely, then there is even less need to use things like precious gems, cutting down even further to the point we expect it to almost never happen. If Verditius magi can just mundanely craft an item with Verditius Runes, then the discussion of this being done becomes silly. But if the paragraphs are as I say above, then the way to get the nice boost from Verditius Runes is to have the Verditius open the item, and there is a reason Verditius magi tend to open items for others.


Now, if the first paragraph is as I say, which seems most consistent both with how it is written and with the patterns across the line, and if you want Verditius Runes to apply to Charged Items and Lesser Enchanted Devices made by a Verditius, then the future tense should be removed from the third paragraph to allow this.


None of what I have said hinges on whether the bonus from Verditius Runes applies generally or applies to where there are already S&M bonuses. I have not found a case where using Verditius Runes was described and there was not already an S&M bonus. I don't think most people interpreted them this way, but I do see how you're reading "appropriate."

And isn't about Verditius runes at all, so the restrictions here, which are as you say, do not necessarily apply to them.

Because the option didn't occur to the authors, most likely…

Still, not errata'ing the authors into idiocy would be good.

I don't see the logic here, even if you are allowing Verditius to arbitrarily give bonuses to anything. They still stack with S&M bonuses, and most magi have a Magic Theory that is higher than S&M bonuses. (If the runes depend on S&M bonuses, then you might still want gems, because they have the right bonus.)

Incidentally, of the statted Verditius magi in ArM5, the one in TME has Philosophiae 5, Matilda Page in TtA has 3, Avedetus Fabri in ToP has 5, Petalichus in MoH has 4 at gauntlet+45, Gwydion in MoH has 4 at gauntlet+105, Anaximander in Dies Irae has 5, and the Verditius Apprentice in Apprentices doesn't have it at all. So, the line assumes that the Verditius Runes bonus is 4 or 5 in most cases. There are going to be enough magi with higher Magic Theory to make it worth having something with S&M bonuses and Verditius Runes, even if they are not linked.

There are definitely good arguments for either resolution here. The strongest one for the other side is that Verditius should be able to use their runes on charged and lesser enchanted items. In that case, do the runes fall off if the Verditius does not then enchant an item they made by mundane techniques? That doesn't seem to make sense.

Still thinking.

Huh? The third paragraph is slightly vague, but not that vague. Verditius Runes are restricted to either the second paragraph only or to both the first and second paragraph.

The issue is that precious gems require MT around 10 (could be 9 and specialty, or similar with Puissant). If your MT is that high, then you don't need a Verditius to open it; if not, then let's look at the values. Your MT is ≤9. Without Verditius Runes you might well need these to double your MT easily. But with Verditius Runes, you don't need much other bonus. Why? Well, getting to Philosophiae 5 with a specialty in Verditius Runes is super-easy considering the ready availability of decent-quality mundane books that are super-cheap for magi. (5 is actually really low for the easy-to-reach end, and Philosophiae is one of the few Abilities that can get pushed well above 10 with some focus.) So to max out your MT you would need a maximum of 3 points from S&M bonuses. You can get that with most Arts well before the difficulty and expense of precious gems. A little basalt? You've got Perdo and Ignem handled. A little mercury? You've got Muto handled. A little bronze? You've got Terram handled. A little magnetite? You've got Animal handled. And all those examples are with a single material, but your MT is high enough that you could use a few materials. With a few materials, you can easily get a little bit more bonus, so even with the maximum MT without being able to open the item, Philosophiae 5 is overkill for this situation. If 5 is overkill, then all those 4s and 5s you're presenting are examples backing up what I'm saying, not working against what I'm saying. I think what you missed is that while you may want some S&M bonuses, my point is you don't need much. Even though things like ruby's +6 appear really nice, it would be tons cheaper and just as effective to get a Verditius to make some trivial little item with piece of basalt in it over a couple days than it would be to hire the Verditius for an entire season to open something with a lot of vis.

All that is actually required logically to enable that is to get ride of the future tense in the third paragraph. The first paragraph is actually discussing the Verditius making charged items, lesser enchanted items, etc., and it notes that to get the bonus while doing so you need to have made the physical item from raw materials yourself. Since the first paragraph is actually talking about making magic items and the second is talking about opening items for enchantment, "creating such items" technically refers to making magic items, not making any random thing; it's during the lab process (enchanting/opening) that they add their runes. Changing "he powers which will be instilled" to "the powers that are instilled" would mean the bonus applies as the magic item is being made, which now includes charged items and lesser enchanted devices. It could still be written more carefully, but that strongest argument for the other side really is handled entirely with merely "will be" changing to "are."

The thing is, since you can change any of it, when do you want it to actually apply? And does where you want it to apply create consistency issues elsewhere?

  • A Verditius carves a replacement wheel for a toy out of a spare piece of wood. Someone steals the wheel to incorporated into their magic item to gain the bonus from Verditius runes.
  • A Verditius uses Rego craft magic to do the prior case.
  • A Verditius spends an hour whittling a branch into a wand and hands it off to a magus for them to gain the bonus.
  • A Verditius uses Rego craft magic to do the prior case.
  • A Verditius can use Verditius Runes on their own charged items and lesser enchanted devices.
  • Do the bonuses apply broadly (which allows for Verditius magi to avoid special materials), or only stack with S&M bonuses (which will enforce special materials).

The wording can be tailored toward inclusion and exclusion of any of those.

Double MT is the vis you can handle. The maximum S&M bonus is just your MT. That's on your side of the argument, of course.

For lesser items and talismans, this is fine. For standard invested devices, though, you might well want the compact capacity of a gem, independent of S&M bonuses. That was the initial design benefit of gems.

In any case, I can see the arguments for saying that Verditius runes do not get added by mundane crafting.

So, you think a Verditius magus can add Verditius runes when instilling a power in an item crafted and opened by a non-Verditius magus? I'm not sure that's supported by the RAW — actually, I think that future tense may be supposed to exclude it — and I'm not sure I want to allow it, although I could be persuaded.

Sorry, I wasn't clear. I talk about doubling MT for your Lab Total because you always get MT, and you can get up double it with S&M bonuses.

Give me a magic item example you want made and think will benefit, and I'll show you what a magus with MT 9 (highest that cannot manage that precious gem) and a Verditius with 5+specialty can manage. I think you'll be surprised how little gain you get from such compactness.

Definitely not. The first paragraph is talking about using their own craft with their own magic. The first paragraph fails to apply if someone else makes an item to be enchanted. The first paragraph actually fails to apply if some other Verditius else makes item for this Verditius to enchant.

I'm not sure where you got this idea from what I wrote. I think you accidentally swapped conditions when reading what I wrote.

Ah, OK.

I want a ring with 200 levels of effects in it.

The problem here is that, under the first paragraph, the Verditius runes are either incorporated during the crafting, which precedes enchantment (the second paragraph, by contrast has them happen simultaneously), or during the enchantment with the effect. If the first, we have the toy cart problem. If the latter, there seems no reason why the Verditius has to have done the crafting. The runes are being added later.

But yes, as you said while I was typing, I get to decide, and in the absence of any sort of consensus from other people on where the lines should be (the current situation), I will just decide.

Current thinking: Runes enhance S&M bonuses for enchantment purposes, and can be added during the process of instilling magic into an item. Someone else can have made it, but it must not be magic yet. The bonus from crafting your own items is a separate thing entirely.

Not during actual enchantment.

As I read the text Verditius Runes are added when the item is crafted. It is either crafted mundanely before any magic happens, or it is crafted magically in the same season the item is opened for enchantment. The second option obviously only applies if the item is opened, so not for charged items or lesser enchanted items.
There is another reading, which I think is wrong, saying that Verditius runes can only be applied when the item is magically crafted while being opened. It basically depends on if one thinks the third paragraph refers only to the second paragraph or if it refers to both the first and second paragraphs.

Either way, my reading of the current text is that Verditius Runes can be added during the same season that the Verditius mage is making the item from raw materials, not at any other time.
So once the item has been crafted, it is too late to add any Verditius Runes, and as a consequence the Runes are always applied before any powers are instilled into the item.

We were talking about using precious gems and the like. This is a totally different issue.

Then there also seems no reason why the Verditius doesn't get to include their Craft score, right? The quality of the item created is entirely separate from this Craft score, and your Craft score at the time actually isn't relevant, only when you are instilling a given effect (consider a Talisman that has an effect added 50 years after it was created). So why would you think one and not the other?

Replying separately for clarity,

This is very consistent with what is written. I think, for clarity, you would want to note that they apply while instilling that magic and afterward.

That's definitely a change. But it does bring some consistency to your Craft score at the time of making the physical item being totally irrelevant. It also makes more sense of why Verditius magi would want skilled craftsmen as Forge Companions.

Why would you think that the Craft score at the time of crafting is not relevant? I don't see anything in the current text that says that.

OK, there are two ways the logic of this can go:

When a Verditius magus makes an item for enchantment from raw materials, he may add his score in the relevant Craft Ability to all Lab Totals for enchanting that item.

Option 1: "When" is meant temporally, meaning at the time of such creation from raw materials. If that's the case, then the Craft Ability is not longer added at later times. But this conflicts immediately with gaining the bonus with Talismans and other opened items. It's also in conflict with later examples. So we know for sure "when" is not meant temporally.

Option 2: "When" is meant conditionally, to qualify the magus making the items from raw materials as the necessary factor. If we've met this condition, we get to add our Craft Ability to our Lab Total. Note that this does not say our Craft Ability at the time the item was created, and we know "when" isn't temporal so that also doesn't link them. So our Lab Total includes our Craft Ability. That means when I go and calculate my Lab Total, I will use whatever Craft Ability I have at the moment, just like I won't use my Magic Theory score from when I originally opened my Talisman, etc. That would be consistent with other statements about calculating Lab Totals as well as with the example that uses the Craft score rather than referring to what the Craft score had been.

If this isn't what you intended, then this part needs to be changed, too. Of course, it's even more bookkeeping to have to record every such item from the Verditius with a Craft score as well. And you would also want to change the example to specify it uses the past Craft score. You'd also probably want to check the MoH Verditius magi to see what happens to some of their creations, as I fully expect those writers used the current Craft score when working on imbued devices and Talismans.

That's not in the text…

Counter argument: I'm not crafting the item now, so my Craft Ability now is irrelevant. I am creating the enchantment now, so my Magic Theory Ability now is relevant.

OK, here's a candidate clarification.

Verditius magi are initiated into the Outer Mystery of Verditius Magic, which allows them to incorporate craft abilities into their magic. To do this, the magus crafts the item from raw materials as part of the first season of enchanting it. For a talisman or standard invested device, this is the season in which it is opened for enchantment. For lesser enchanted items and charged items, this is the whole process. If crafting the item would normally take the magus a season or less, this does not increase the time required for the enchantment. If crafting the item would normally take more than a season, the process takes a whole number of seasons that is at least as long as the time it would normally take the magus to craft the item. For example, if it would normally take the magus four months to craft the item, then it takes him two seasons to craft and enchant it. No matter how long this takes, it only includes the first season of enchantment.

A magus who does this may add his score in the relevant Craft Ability to all Lab Totals for enchanting that item, both in the first season and in the future. Thanks to his mystical link to the item, this bonus is always his current Craft Ability, even if it has improved since he crafted the item. Note that only one Craft Ability can be added to the Lab Total in a given season, even if the magus has more than one applicable to the item. The applicable Ability may, however, change over time — the magus should add his highest applicable Craft Ability. Other magi adding enchantments to an invested device do not get this bonus, even if they have the same Craft Ability as the creating magus, and even if they are members of House Verditius.

The magus may also use the magic of the enchantment to shape the item. This does not require any Craft Ability, although most Verditius magi will use an Ability that they have, and the final form may be impossible to make by mundane means. For example, a Verditius magus could set a gem in a wooden lattice so that the gem cannot be removed without breaking the wood, without having any breaks in the wood to get it in. The final form must be able to sustain itself by mundane means once created; in particular, it must be strong enough to bear its own weight.

As part of this process, the magus may add details that enhance the Shape and Material bonus of the item. These details give an additional bonus to all the item's existing Shape and Material bonuses equal to the creating magus's Philosophiae score, for the purposes of enchantment. Other uses of Shape and Material bonuses, such as the casting bonuses from a Talisman, use the standard bonus. Other magi refer to these details as Verditius Runes, but they are far more complex than that suggests. The total bonus from Shape and Material and Verditius Runes is still limited by the magus's Magic Theory score. Other magi do get this bonus if they instill appropriate powers into an item created by a Verditius.

If the magus creates the enchanted item in this way, the number of pawns of vis needed to open the enchantment is reduced by the magus's Craft score, to a minimum of one pawn. The magus, or any other magus, may invest effects in the device as if he had paid the full, normal cost to open it.

"As part of this process" - which process is that? Using magic to shape the item? Crafting the item normally? Either of them?

"If the magus creates the enchanted item in this way," - same problem here. What does "in this way" refer back to?

I addressed that one. That would be the temporal argument. That is in direct contradiction to the paragraph itself because that means it doesn't apply when enchanting Talisman nor invested devices. So we know that counter argument is necessarily incorrect.

That does not necessarily follow. At the time the magus is creating the item from raw materials he gets to add his relevant Craft score to all Lab Totals for enchanting that item.
That's all Lab Totals - past, present, and future. (Alright, past Lab Totals will be irrelevant as long as the Limit of Time applies). Not only the Lab Totals he is using at that very moment.
Not the only possible interpretation, but not one that can be ruled out from the text either.

You're contradicting yourself. You say "when" means at that time you get to add the lab totals. Then you say it means you get to add it at other times. But that's only true if "when" doesn't mean at that time.

We could totally rewrite the sentence to allow for this, but the construction of the sentence does not at all right now.

It is quite wordy, but based on the ongoing discussion, I understand the need for clarification, and this version answers all the possible arguments at my table.

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Can the Verditius Rune score of an item be increased after it has been created? For example when a talisman is opened for additonal spaces or when the Reforging mystery is used on an item or if the Verditius magus has Consummate Talisman and is adding a new component?