Warping Clarifications

This question feels silly, but I want to get it clarified on how it works. An individual ('Indi') gets warping points if he is subjected to powerful mystical effects (6th magnitude or higher) unless designed for him. This is explicitly stated with numerous Creo Corpus healing and crisis-aversion effects. Does this rule also count spells not explicitly targetting Indi? The obvious example coming to mind is Ball of Abysmal Flame or Incantation of Lightning. Technically, these spells don't target Indi, he's just standing in their way. If they do cause warping, what about a Creo Terram 40 spell that creates an ornate suit of chain mail? Does the wearer get warping for being affected by the powerful mystical effect?

A follow up question, are there any rules about warping affecting inanimate objects? A shield that constantly is hardened by its enchantment, et cetera; or is warping explicitly for living creatures?

The rules don't go in to excessive detail, it says "Anyone subjected to a powerful mystical effect ...". I interpret "subjected" to mean that the target must significantly interact with the effect. I would not apply warping for Ball of Abysmal Flame or a Creoed suit of mail. The person is not the target so they're not "subjected" to it. I also don't give warping if the person is scanned by a spell with a magical sense target (not Bjornaer sensory magic but the magical senses targets from page 113).

Inanimate objects are mentioned as being subject to warping but they do not have a warping score. There are no explicit mechanics for this at all, instead it is left up to the story guide, there's a text box on page 167.

No. The magic affects the suit of chain mail, it's not affecting the wearer directly.

Inanimate objects DO get warping, but there are very few hard-and-fast rules. The hardest set of rules I know is in a sidebar on p.39 of "Transforming Mythic Europe".

(Frankly, you couldn't pay me to use those rules except as a plot point. Tracking Warping for every building, weapon, piece of clothing, piece of armor, broom or spoon in the covenant? Sure, no problem, it's not like Ars Magica has lots of other bookkeeping to keep track of...)


Yes. One can be subject to a powerful mystical effect that also affects other people.

This seems reasonable. If effect X cast only on me would Warp me, why not also as part of a Group?

Less reasonable, but still RAW, is that a level 25 effect cast on just me would not Warp me, but the same exact effect but at level 35 due to Group would. Not completely unreasonable, since there's more magic involved.

But the target is subject to a powerful mystical effect. After all, MR applies! This is a simple and consistent way of determining what happens: Would you get to use MR?

No, because he is not affected. The armor is.

There are hints that this can happen, but no rules I remember.



While as a general I like where you're headed with this, I'm not sure this works how I'd like it to. Consider the following examples:

There are a bunch of fresh wolf corpses. A magus animates them as a group, allowing mental control (ReAn(Me) 30 or 35 - No point in double-checking to be sure since they both exceed 25.), and has them attack someone. One of these wolves bites that someone. Magic resistance could protect that someone. Should the bite from the animated wolf warp that someone?

A Magus uses ReTe to animate lots of swords, flying them about to swing at people. There are enough swords or enough strength or whatever to make sure it's at least 6th magnitude. The swords are resisted by magic resistance. Should someone hit by a nonmagical sword wielded via ReTe suffer warping?


Yeah, I find these just as problematic as you.

So maybe it's not about MR, but about whether you or part of you is the target or part of the target. So being hit by CrIg would not Warp, but being hurled across the continent by ReCo (or ReTe(casting req Co)) would.

(The problem touches on the generally problematic workings of MR in AM. Consistency is hard.)



My feelings and interpretations tend towards similar. I definitely feel anything where the person is the 'target' should be warped (nobody seems to question that). Being struck by Ball of Abysmal Flame maybe not, or a magically animated weapon, probably should not (target one step removed?). I would think being within a field of magic, such as a Rego Terram ward against stones cast to protect an individual should, but when cast in a location (circle or room) should probably not.

Though as I type this last example, I wonder if the big difference is that the spell is affecting them as it is cast, against the spell affecting them after it is cast. A circle ward against stone can be put on the floor of a tower, and people can walk in and out of it whenever they want without incurring warping, correct (though if they spend all year in it...)
I really want to make a good rule of thumb for this, but I understand that any 'rule' I can still find an example where I say "That's dumb, it shouldn't work." Otherwise we're going to have an NPC magus jerk planting warping-traps all around his laboratory which are high-level illumination spells.

Certain spells affecting targets after they're cast do, canonically, inflict Warping. (The enchantments on the Tremere 'healing waystations' in "Against the Dark" are specifically said to do so, for example.)

My rule of thumb, for my games, is as follows.
(a) If the spell is cast directly at the person as the Target. (Note that "Clenching Grasp of the Crushed Heart" is cast directly at the person, but "Ball of Abysmal Flame" is not: the Target of BoAF is the ball of fire you create.)
(b) If the spell is actively working on a person inside an area. (Room-target "Purification of the Festering Wounds" does directly work on the people inside, but "Chamber of Spring Breezes" does not. Circle of warding against stone doesn't either, because the magic acts on stones that try to enter the circle.)
(c) If the spell is made of pure, grade-A Wisconsin cheese. (If you say "my magus casts 30 defensive spells on himself every morning", this rule comes into play, even if some of the individual spells shouldn't cause warping.)


Interestingly, the BoAF in the above example would fit under this category, would it not?

This is effectively the 'Constant Effect' category from the table on p. 168, so yeah. :-/

I don't think so. A Room-target BoAF simply fills the room with flame: the magic is working on the flame, not on the people or things within it. Now if your GM is truly sadistic, she could do something like "Freeing the Inner Fires", a MuCo (Ig) spell with T:Room that makes the people inside the room burst into flame. That would inflict damage AND Warping.

So you are of the opinion that to get Warping, an entity must be a/the relevant Target?
Simple and elegant, I agree.

Way a head of you on that one! :smiling_imp:

That sounds reasonable and simple.

So if a magus casts a range arcane connection version of posing the silent question on a target that target gets a warping point. If the same magus uses a range personal target hearing version of posing the silent question to get the very same information from the same target the target is not warped. In the first case the individual is the target, in the second case the caster is.(Or is the information the target?)

If you cast it with a hearing target it would work differently, in that you wouldn't really be posing the silent question so much as hearing everyone's thoughts...

That one stumped me for a bit, until I realized that in this case, you aren't actually casting the same spell. :slight_smile: Intellego spells can grant a magical sense, but they don't have to. The bog-standard version of "Posing the Silent Question" does not grant a magical sense -- it queries the individual's mind directly. So in that case the individual is the Target, and gets Warping. Your second spell DOES grant a magical sense, so in that case the person being granted the magical sense is the Target, and gets Warping.

(Well. Strictly speaking, in the 2nd case the "sense that the information comes through" is the Target, but the "sense the information cones through" would by definition belong to the person receiving the information, so I'd say the recipient of the sense gets Warping.)

Everyone's thoughts on that one specific question. Opinions of the Masses from Magi of Hermes p. 67.

Yes, that's exactly the issue. In the case of the range AC spell the scanned person gets warped. in the case of the target hearing spell the scanned person does not get warped. Yet it seems to me that what the magic is doing to that scanned mind is the same in both cases. It seems odd that one of them causes warping and the other doesn't. It wasn't a matter of the rule being unclear. It was a matter of it producing some odd results.

Ah, I see what you're getting at now.
Ugh. You're right, it does produce some odd results. What the magic is doing to that scanned mind is not quite the same thing... but MR would still affect it, so it is still touching the scanned mind in some fashion.
I'm not sure what to do with that, honestly.


Which maybe returns me to my original suggestion, despite some of its weirdness: If an effect would allow MR, it can cause Warping. Otherwise, no.

Maybe being hit with a very magical sword should cause Warping, an attack by something utterly unnatural.

(It does combine reasonably with my variant warping rules, fwiw.)

EDIT: sigh Although a InX sensory spell that Warps everyone I look at isn't such a great idea either.



I think my crazy warp-focused Criamon is now going to design a personal vision-sense vis-detection spell that turns his eyes into warping lasers?


Similar to the way these spells (0 penetration cast, of course) can ping the MR of everything in sensory range, distracting everything with MR (effect of repeated pinging tbd by gm)...