What New Games Would You Like To See In Mythic Europe?

I guess maybe Mage dealt with this?

They did. Sorta. Then they destroyed the whole world. That was like 15 years ago. The new version of Mage ignores all of that. I can tell from the way he writes that Brucatto is a huge Ars Magica fan.

I am giving matters some serious thought. Mythic Europe is tied to a specific culture and time frame. It is not about a change in the laws of physics. Magic is not about physics. Magic is about wizards making magic things happen using their best understanding of how things happen.
And electricity is Terram, not Auram. I can debate that if you want, but it is besides the point.

Just Mythic Europe. Now, I do presume that mean the whole Order of Hermes and Houses. Otherwise we are talking about just fantasy Europe, and anyone can publish whatever they want for that. So what can we do with that in a different sort of game?

For an RPG, I like action/adventure. But the middle ages is sooo played out for that.
Another board game? Maybe cards? Yeah, call it Wizard Wards. Not collectible cards. Just a shared deck, maybe expansions if popular.
Or how about a co-operative game of some sort? A board game for kids. Sorta like Dungeon back in the day. You march around as a Flambeau magus or Criamon or whatever. You land on encounter locations, sometimes it is a confrontation sometimes it is negotiation. You collect spell cards and vis. When the players get to "x" many spells, vis, and so on, they have built a Covenant and win the game.

Mags Knight but in mythic europe

I understand what you mean. And I think you’re right. But at the same time, in mythic Europe...bloodletting works. The four humors are real, and they’re useful diagnostic tools. I’m not sure how to reconcile that?

By trying out Ars magica in a new setting it would be possible to explore the effects of hermetic magic on wider culture. I understand why this doesn't happen in the current setting and I think that for mythic europe not exploring the effects of hermetic magic on the setting is the right choice. I also think that this is something that the ars magica system is uniquely well suited for.

I am not advocating for the abandonement of mythic europe entirely, I simply think that ArM5 did mythic europe so well that it will be very challenging to present a new edition of ars magica in mythic europe in the middle ages. A new edition like that would in all likelihood end up as either a clone of the old edition or have to deliberately avoid the old edition and that would also result in a sub-par edition.

Like Jonathan Link I would also appreciate basically any setting material that is compatible with 5th edition, scenarios, campaigns etc. I realize this is essentially a request for the continuation of the 5th edition.

For a new edition I would like to see a fundamental change to the action resolution mechanic. like the current progression system, that is: I like how it feels like to increase Abilities. I don't like that abilities can pretty quickly become so high that a player can have a bonus that is on par with the highest result obtainable from the die. as an example: If two characters (A and B) are trying the same challenge character A has a +3 bonus and character B can manage a +11 bonus. I assume a simple die for simplicity's sake.
A dc of 12 (a hard challenge according to the core rulebook) means that character A needs to roll a 9 or 10 to pass and a character B needs to roll a 1. this means that a challenge that is supposed to be hard is impossible to fail for character B and extremely difficult to pass for character A. In short I dont like how bonuses dominate over the dieroll.
I think the solution would be to increase the range of outcome available from the die, e.g. by having players roll 2d10.

A new edition, setting wise, has a few options:

  1. streamline the rules, keep mythic Europe as it is
  2. change the way the order works within mythic Europe. For example, perhaps after the 4th crusade there was a schism in the order where Thebes and the Levant broke off and added a House Sueliman to the Eastern Order. Or the beginnings of the protestant reformation were beginning in the 12th century with the heresies such as the Cathars and the Waldensians, and if magi were allowed to enter the crusades as a religious choice, they would also be able to defend these "heresies" in the same way.
  3. alternate history- change something in history, go forward with the alternate philosophae of the ars magica universe (movable type and gunpowder work, but may not hot air balloons... other technology might be possible...) or change something in the past so Europe turns out differently: this opens up a lot of campaign settings and allows GMs to customize.
  4. complete transformation- create a fully fantasy setting and separate from mythic Europe entirely.

I strongly second this idea. I think it will make for an excellent game, although I'm not sure if it's "a new game" or just a, well, "supplement"? "saga"?

I like traditional fantasy settings. As such, two possibilities to combine them with Ars Magica:

  1. The Order of Emeperor Commenus: This is a high-fantasy (and not PC) version of Mythic Europe, where in the wake of the disasterous battle of Manzikert (1071) the new emperor of the failing Byzantine empire, Alexios Commenus, strikes a desparate gambit to save the Empire of Mankind: he establishes a new Order of Wizards - yeah, all those hated Gifted ones - to help him fight off the Centaurs of the North, the Orcs of the East, the Infernally-corrupted West, and so on. The Romans/Greeks are treated as Humans, everyone else has Faerie Blood, is a Centaur, or so on - at least partly of another Realm. So pretty high-fantasy stuff.

  2. Greyhawk Setting: Use Ars Magica rules to play in a D&D setting, complete with the Lich-King, the Circle of Eight Archmagi, the fallen Magical Empires, and so on. Instead of the Order, wizards are feared due to their Gift and to history (destroying empires and such will tend to do this), and are rare and far between.

I really like this idea in a general sense, but I think Mythic Europe is a huge strength of Ars and you lose something if you move to a wholly fantasy setting. That said the idea of a game where wizards are still the focal point but are out in the open is interesting, and it lets you really take the magic system to its logical conclusion.

Something similar-ish could be a 'Heroic Europe' bronze age setting, with the Mediterranean as the main setting and all the fantastical creatures and inhuman tribes that people in the ancient med thought existed just beyond the known world (Anthropophagi, Hyperboreans, Blemmyes, Centaurs, Gorillas - you could go really weird with it if you wanted to).

Give me a Certamen app or card game!

Seriously, rehabilitating Certamen—by which I mean taking this cool concept that most people avoid/never use and making it something fun and exciting which players actively seek out and want to do—is both a serious design challenge and also something that could be very rewarding to the whole Mythic Europe/ArM line.

8 Likes

Excellent idea!

It might perhaps be done without great runup and effort, be distributed for a modest price by online trade, and thus become the first product for the Ars line after the 'draught'.

A full-fledge, epic campaign might bring me back to Ars Magica. Other games, I'm not sure.

HI,

New games in Mythic Europe? Back in the before times, one of the owners of Ars (Atlas or WW, don't remember) advertised Shining Armor which was for knights as Ars was for magi. Sounded like a different focus, kind of White Wolf-y World of Darkness-y add a group and make a game around it kind of thing.

My idea would be instead of play focused around covenants, play focuses around a celtic tribe prior/during to Roman incursions. "Magi" would be druids, grogs would be people of the tribe. Still Mythic Europe, just set 1000 years earlier with a different focus.

Rich

I also agree that 'mundanes + minor magical/faerie/infernal/divine traditions in a world of magic' would make for a fantastic game. The big draws for me are:
i. Experience Mythic Europe from a position of greater vulnerability and ignorance, where a minor fae creature could be a great threat. It is easier to build up atmosphere (a sense of mystery or fear) when the PCs aren't so powerful and well-informed themselves.
ii. Get closer to the folklore which inspires our Ars Magica games, where the protagonists aren't members of an order of wizards, but the knight who meets the faerie lady on the road who asks him to dance, the peasant whose house is molested by a boggart, etc.
iii. Much of what we need is already there in various supplements - the magical and divine traditions, the information on playing merchants, craftsmen, academics, priests, knights, etc. It just needs to be drawn out and built on in such a way that possible focii for games are found other than a covenant of the Order of Hermes.
iv. Rules will be lighter and the material more immediately familiar making such a game more accessible than Ars Magica.
v. In addition to supernatural stories, and again using material already published, it will be possible to bring to the fore more purely historical themes - e.g. noble politics, expanding a mercantile network, the lives of a group of wandering entertainers, etc.

David

1 Like

I would like to see a Mythic Europe campaign setting for Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition. I have my own notes for this, but I'm not a game designer. It would be exciting (for me at least) to see Mythic Europe available for D&D 5e. After seeing Adventures in Middle-Earth (The One Ring for D&D), Sandy Petersen's Cthulhu Mythos (CoC for D&D), and what I think Arcana of the Ancients should be like (Ninth World/Numenera for D&D), I know it can be done. I don't know what the demand would be, though.

The system needs to be simplified. I love game mechanics myself but today ArM is outdated as a system for that focuses on character interaction. Skills and art should have the same range (why is there a difference?). Minus that plus that and divided by that slows a fun game. Some spells are too powerful and destroys fun stories. Certamen can not be used. Overall the game has gone from "mythic" to "historic" and in an historic world magi and dragons have no place. Get "mythic" back in "Mythic Europe".

1 Like

D&D is a level-system based around being able to take more hits so you can kill more monsters. I don't think is is the right system for Mythic Europe as the number of good dungeons are limited.

3 Likes

I still think it's possible to mod the system to be a more high-fantasy non-Mythic Europe setting. Made some notes for the idea but didn't actually do much more.
I could see a levels-and-hp ME setting, though I wouldn't be too interested in it. I'd be more interested in a D&D-styled setting with the Ars rules.

Ars Magica but in the age of the founders of the order. Everything full of Hedge Magicians. Join or die. Wizard wars and so on.

That would be (probably) fun.

4 Likes

With an unrefined, simpler system of Hermetic Magic to represent that early age.

By the way, for the people asking for more Far Eastern content, did you know there's a version of Kali worshipped as a Christian folk saint in Romani populations in Southern France? Well, arguably. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Sarah

I knew the Buddha was gazetted as a saint for a while in the Orthodox Church, but this was new to me.

1 Like