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Does anyone use Blood magic in their games?


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I'm interested to know if anyone uses Blood magic in their games?

It is so widespread in different cultures that I am interested in including it in my game for special sacrifices on High Holy days, wars, natural disasters, ill omens, crop failure...etc

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I am not.. but after playing Assassin Creed Odyssey (in the Atlantis DLC one learn all Greek world's monster are Isu creation, and they keep on hacking... one can see inspirational statue all over the place¬†ūüėģ), I have been inspired to use blood magic unholy creations (chimera like creatures) and practitioners as the main antagonists in my next fantasy campaign! :)

Edited by Lloyd Dupont
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In a setting I am/was creating, I had planned on having a a race of npc elves use it. The lived a a deep and large canyon. It had the square miles if about the British isles and was perpetually overcast. Thus giving the elves a sickly skin color. I work on it every so often.

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21 hours ago, Nozbat said:

I'm interested to know if anyone uses Blood magic in their games?

Yes, my current Revolution D100ish Dark Age Prydain game has a healthy dollop of Blood Magic, taken from Legend.

It makes for quite a dark game in places, but sometimes confuses the Players, as their enemies and allies both use Blood Magic and one of them has a connection to the Grail and realised that it is based on Blood Magic.

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For a project i'm working on, I'm testing the meta-game assumption in play that individual people have no inherent "pool" or battery of Magic Points that can be summoned by force of will or expended psychically.  Instead, Magic Point accumulate in a variety of places and can be liberated by a variety of events -- to wit, ceremony and sacrifice, sacrifice being the more immediate and explosive method.  It can be as simple as destroying an object of intrinsic or emotional value, or as extreme as ritual blood-letting.  In this paradigm, no power comes without a lasting price.  We'll see how it goes over with the players.

!i!

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36 minutes ago, soltakss said:

Yes, my current Revolution D100ish Dark Age Prydain game has a healthy dollop of Blood Magic, taken from Legend.

It makes for quite a dark game in places, but sometimes confuses the Players, as their enemies and allies both use Blood Magic and one of them has a connection to the Grail and realised that it is based on Blood Magic.

The ubiquity of Blood Magic strikes me as difficult to leave out of games as it runs through every culture particularly in Celtic/ Greek/ Northern Germanic which I am presently interested in. I think you're right Soltakss.. people find it unsettling and dark.. particularly if we want to be on the 'good side' and it is sometimes difficult to suspend our 21st century morality.

I've looked at the Legend rules and will likely take parts of that to use

I was looking at the pictures I'd taken of Bog bodies at the National Archaeology Museum in Dublin ... blood sacrifice...fascinating stuff

IMG_3733.jpg

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I have wondered about this supplement before. Could someone tell us just a little about the mechanics of Blood Magic? Specifically how powerful is it and does it require a ritual or can it be used in real-time. Also, if anyone knows, how does it compare in power level to Stormbringer sorcery or even the sorcery used in BRP and Magic World?

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40 minutes ago, rsanford said:

I have wondered about this supplement before. Could someone tell us just a little about the mechanics of Blood Magic?

I have heavily adapted and expanded it to fit in with the magic in Revolution, so the version I am using isn't like the version in the Arcana of Legend: Blood Magic supplement. Mine is far more freeform, as that is how I use magic in my games.

The supplement covers sacrifice and how it fuels magic, ritual cannibalism, blood miracles for theists, blood sorcery for sorcerers, concert magic for group castings, enchanting rules, summoning magic, random tables to create demons, and bloody campaigns that include how to use Blood Magic in campaigns.

It is a pretty good supplement and the rules hang together well enough to be used.

47 minutes ago, rsanford said:

Specifically how powerful is it and does it require a ritual or can it be used in real-time.

Sacrifice is a ritual act and should be cast out of combat, as you would expect.

Divine Blood Magic requires a sacrifice of blood to gain the Divine spells, then a further sacrifice on a daily basis to retain them. Casting them is simply a case of rolling your Invoke (Deity) in combat, as you would a normal Divine spell.

Sorcery Blood Magic involves spending blood (HPs) instead of Magic Points, otherwise works as normal sorcery. There is a rule that spending HPs to cast magic means the HPs cannot be healed magically, but I would specifically allow that.

 

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28 minutes ago, soltakss said:

I have heavily adapted and expanded it to fit in with the magic in Revolution, so the version I am using isn't like the version in the Arcana of Legend: Blood Magic supplement. Mine is far more freeform, as that is how I use magic in my games.

The supplement covers sacrifice and how it fuels magic, ritual cannibalism, blood miracles for theists, blood sorcery for sorcerers, concert magic for group castings, enchanting rules, summoning magic, random tables to create demons, and bloody campaigns that include how to use Blood Magic in campaigns.

It is a pretty good supplement and the rules hang together well enough to be used.

Sacrifice is a ritual act and should be cast out of combat, as you would expect.

Divine Blood Magic requires a sacrifice of blood to gain the Divine spells, then a further sacrifice on a daily basis to retain them. Casting them is simply a case of rolling your Invoke (Deity) in combat, as you would a normal Divine spell.

Sorcery Blood Magic involves spending blood (HPs) instead of Magic Points, otherwise works as normal sorcery. There is a rule that spending HPs to cast magic means the HPs cannot be healed magically, but I would specifically allow that.

 

That's very helpful!

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n.b. Runequest explicitly has ritual sacrifice &c.  Mostly animals, for the "good guys" (Orlanthi & Ernaldan).  There's a full-page illo featuring a pig on an altar...

Lunars use blood sacrifice to summon the Crimson Bat & keep it fed (actually, it's more like the evil sword Stormbringer's soul-eating), and to fuel the Glow Line that empowers magic inside the Empire.  One of their superhero/demigods brought maize, and this also sometimes needs blood sacrifice.

I'm sure there's other elements of the setting that use similar, that I'm not bringing to mind (or am simply ignorant of)...

None of these, AFAIK, are based on Blood Magic rules from Legend.

 

I also allow "good" gods to accept blood sacrifice, if given willingly (often by the officiant performing the sacrifice, giving his or her OWN blood); depending on the game-setting.

Edited by g33k
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54 minutes ago, g33k said:

n.b. Runequest explicitly has ritual sacrifice &c.  Mostly animals, for the "good guys" (Orlanthi & Ernaldan).  There's a full-page illo featuring a pig on an altar...

To be clear, no pigs, real or imagined, were harmed in the production of this illustration!

!i!

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1 hour ago, Ian Absentia said:

To be clear, no pigs, real or imagined, were harmed in the production of this illustration!

It's OK, sweetie!
This li'l piggie is just sleeping...

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I don't know if this will get me banned but here goes:

I experimented with this idea in (believe it or not) a set of LotR rules I wrote way back when the movies were big. In these rules the Dark Arts (Necromancy, Wizardry - which I define as the summoning of demons, elementals and other spirits - and Sorcery used for evil) could cost points of permanent POW. These points come either from the caster or those victims sacrificed on the altar. One sentient being generated one POW point, as the rest of the POW was expended in the sheer terror of the ritual and, essentially, go to waste. Animals generated POW based on their relative POW: one bull or tiger might equal one POW, lesser creatures (pigs, chickens) would generate a fraction of one POW (therefore a number might be needed).

Obviously, these magicks (in Middle-earth) were the province of the Haradrim and those nations under the thrall of Morgoth and Sauron.

Please note, these rules were written to describe the darkest of the Dark Arts and have clear warnings against using them in the games. They were also written before Sorcery spells like Brazier of Power, Chain of Being, Blood Feast and the Fey magicks in Advanced Sorcery.

Colin

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23 hours ago, colinabrett said:

I don't know if this will get me banned but here goes:

Nah, that won't get you banned.

in our last Gloranthan campaign, the PCs were doing a ritual to resurrect Genert. As part of that, they had to make a cube of sacrificed corpses, 10 wide by 10 deep by 10 high, so 1,000 sacrifices, to provide Genert with enough POW to return. They spent a whole session working out the logistics of gaining 1,000 people to sacrifice and who would do the sacrifice. Not once did they wonder whether they should be sacrificing people at all, or consider the morality of human sacrifice. They did question whether the sacrifices had to be human and were relieved when I said no, as that widened the pool of available victims.

I am sure that whatever we think of pales compared to what the liked of Ana Gor has aldready done.

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On 9/18/2020 at 12:53 PM, colinabrett said:

I don't know if this will get me banned but here goes:

I experimented with this idea in (believe it or not) a set of LotR rules ...

As a fan, no.
But if you tried to commercialize the LoTR property with a BRP engine, or on BRPCentral, then they'd have problems with it.

I can imagine only a few things that could get you the Fist-of-GMod treatment more quickly, really (and most of those are more-aggressive IP holders).

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