What type of MuVi change is "Realm"?

So, I've been reading trough the Muto Vim descriptions, and thought up a bit of a clever solution to my ward specialist's "I don't want to learn 4 identical spells to cover all contingencies" - basically, create a general MuVi spell that can change the Realm of a ward from one to another.

Now, this seems like something MuVi can do. However, I'm not sure if it's a "minor", "moderate" or "major" change. Some thoughts:

  1. In terms of game balance, it looks like the casting requirements of ReVi keep this from being out of control: yeah, you only need to learn 2 spells instead of four, but you have to be do the Concentration roll if you want it to work in a hurry. In terms of (tactical) story balance, that seems to be fine - sure, you know 1 ward fine, but what if you have to case one of the others, RIGHT NOW?

  2. Except for the Realm, CoP (Magic) is completely identical to CoP (anything else) - so the FoTe is staying the same - so it could be minor. However, the end result is (arguably) either almost identical, or completely different, depending on how you define how magic relates to each realm.

  3. If we define "realm" as a "target", then it would be counted as a Moderate change. However, I figured "target" usually meant something like "individual" or "group" rather than "Realm". However, The definition of "moderate change" (changing the effect up or down 5 levels) sounds to me like it would fit a Realm change - it does basically the same thing, only it affects a different aspect of magic.

  4. But (as one of the players mentioned when I brought this up at the table last Sunday), a realm is a completely different thing - making it a "major" change. Personally, I disagreed, basing my argument on the "math" model of magic - the formula is the same, but the value of one variable is different. But I admit, this is argument by analogy, rather than evidence.

So, I bring the question to you all.

There is this Bonisaga in Legends of Hermes who worked on the unification of the Realms. You should find some canon material on your subject there.

Cheers

This is fairly easy: You cannot change the true nature of things.
So, no, you cannot change a ward against demons into a ward against angels.

This sort of thing was rooted out with the transition from 3rd to 4th ed for a reason...

And yes, all of the Vim-guidelines have been rather un-intuitive since the beginning of time :frowning:

As mentioned above, Legends of Hermes has what he wants.
Changing the spells... I just might allow that on a 'major' really.

The Hermetic Limitations have largely been changed since the 3rd.
3rd had Change the Nature of Vis, but that was the only edition.
Mind you, RoP: tI has a guideline to "de-taint" infernal Vis :-/

We've only really had guidelines since the beginning of the 4th ed.
The 1st ed didn't even allow CrVi effects at all mind you.

You're using the same guideline within the same TeFo combination. That's far more than altering a sigil, but far less than changing the guideline, Technique, or Form. So I would rate this in the middle category. I would say the same thing about changing a ReAn ward against squirrels into a ward against rats.

There is also the balancing factor of extra botch dice to add to what you mentioned about concentration.

Chris

I would probably say it's in the harder "totally change a spell" category, equivalent to changing the Technique or Form. Hermetic Magi don't seem to be especially experienced working with Realms, so I wouldn't make it easier.

Muto can certainly change things to manifest contrary to their essential natures, it's just temporary and lasts as long as the magic is in effect. See the section on The Limit of Essential Nature, AM5 pg.79.

Besides, Form and Technique are as much a part of a spell's true nature as is Realm and the rules make it clear that they can be changed with MuVi.

Changing Vis is much harder than changing spells. MuVi can, as referenced, change the Technique or Form of a spell but vanilla Hermetic Magic can't change the Te or Fo associated with Vis, as you note.

I might also require the Muto spell being specific as to which realm is being changed into what other realm, like for example "Demon Bane's Conversion to Cold Iron". Keep in mind the Muto spell wouldn't just affect wards, but also Might strippers, dispelling, and summoning and controlling spirits of specific realms, so it's far from being something "minor".

I still feel like it comes down to the same issue about the ReAn squirrel ward vs. the ReAn rat ward. How much does changing squirrel to rat fundamentally change the spell? I would say the change is probably less fundamental than Sorcerer's Fork and no more fundamental than Wizard's Boost.

Yes, absolutely. MuVi spells are supposed to be very specific about how they affect the given spell.

Yes, that is true, assuming those original spells are designed in the way the MuVi spell actually changes things. For example, it would do nothing with Unraveling the Fabric of (Form).

Chris

I was going all modern on mammals vs fish, but then... HoH:MC divides the animals in 4 humors:

  • sanguine birds
  • phlegmatic fishes
  • melancolic land beasts which are "docile"
  • choleric land beasts which are "fierce"

Changing realm should be no easier than MuVi a fish spell to affect birds. Because some animals straddle the line between 2 humors whereas faeries aren't, you might say it should be one step harder. OTGH, djinns certainly do straddle, so it could be no harder.

I do believe that "major" is right out, though.

Agreed. It's a Significant change.

Thanks for the replies, all - you've certianly given me fodder for next week's game.

Originally, I was thiking of a "Moderate" MuVi effect that would target a specific ReVi ward (such as Magic), but could translate into the other three. Based on the feedback here, I agree that it would probably more likely have to be a straight one-to-one mapping, such as Magic->Farie, but that it would affect all Vim effects that took Realm as a parameter (within reason, of course).

Which doesn't help my ReVi ward specialist, but it does imply that he could potentially branch out and do more in the ways of summonng, banishing, etc. There is still the Concentration issue and the extra botch dice, of course.

Ah, well - more to think about. Again, thanks for everyone's input.

I definitely agree with the guideline level.

Note, however, that a specific formulaic spell is needed for each realm change.

Tangentially, I am not comfortable with the guideline allows changing form or technique, but that is rules as written.

Finally, I would suggest ruling that the penetration of any spell modified by Muto vim is equal to the lesser of the original spell and the spell that modifies it.

I definitely agree with the guideline level.

Note, however, that a specific formulaic spell is needed for each realm change.

Tangentially, I am not comfortable with the guideline allows changing form or technique, but that is rules as written.

Finally, I would suggest ruling that the penetration of any spell modified by Muto vim is equal to the lesser of the original spell and the spell that modifies it.