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I agree.  The natural limit for remembering Sorcery spells should be INT, not Free INT.  But, I like the idea that knowing spirit magic reduces your effective INT as that "connection" to the spirit wo

Indeed we spent several minutes of our session Zero trying to interpret that the text on the spell cost.  The Tables clearly show un-mastered manipulation costing double, and the example shows what ha

I think experienced sorcerers will have created inscriptions for all the spells they know so they can use their full INT to cast them.

I am not opposed to the mechanic at all.   A young, talented sorcerer can cast more than an older, settled magus........IF he has left his magical enchantments behind.  A magic ring, or other jewelry of power is a classic trope.  Thoth-Amon had a heavy reliance on his magic ring, and only once he recovered it could he challenge Conan. 

On the other hand in another Conan story -- I think this one written by a secondary author, there is a wizard's apprentice who abandons his master and rapidly grows in power "bursting doors, leaping from hill top to hill top" with his lover.  The wizard sends a magical hit squad after the apprentice because while he presently is no threat, he fears what may become. 

So it works "well enough".   The upshot is to make the sorcerer just like the Shaman, and the Priest -- utterly dependent on the resource of POW. 

Some sorcerers are just going to be better than others, and that's okay.    Work on your other skills and you will still wind up with a better overall character.  :condition-mastery:

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22 hours ago, Godlearner said:

The armor is not going to matter as the criticals will bypass it

With the 'above 100%' rule, it is only 5% of hits that bypass armor. You can almost forgot it.

16 hours ago, Godlearner said:

Absolutely. MPs for Sorcerers are a must.

Completely true.

22 hours ago, Godlearner said:

And Impales 20% chance

Impales don't ignore armor.

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1 hour ago, Kloster said:

mpales don't ignore armor.

I expect the point was that an impaling broadsword would add a bunch more damage, which will get through 4 points of armor even with a -d4 bonus. Note that the weapon master has reduced the big strong novice's parry to 5% or close, so the novice isn't likely to parry it. Hence the small weak master's impale will still likely inflict a serious wound to the big strong novice.

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31 minutes ago, Dragon said:

I expect the point was that an impaling broadsword would add a bunch more damage, which will get through 4 points of armor even with a -d4 bonus. Note that the weapon master has reduced the big strong novice's parry to 5% or close, so the novice isn't likely to parry it. Hence the small weak master's impale will still likely inflict a serious wound to the big strong novice.

On this, you are right.

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On 2/26/2021 at 2:15 PM, ChrisJ said:

I just finished running an all sorc mini campaign - I kept all the other rules for INT the same but set starting Free INT to max human INT (AKA 21).  Worked out pretty well.  Apart from the weekly castings most spells averaged about 14 pts of intensity due to the long casting times.  Two of the Sorcerers had INT 16 - the big impact to these sorc was that they could only have 5 Runes/Techniques, so they had to select their runes carefully, and expect to cast using extra MP for some spells.

I am adding a homebrew rule that that Magi would also use their racial max INT to determine the number of runes/techniques they can master.

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On 2/26/2021 at 10:04 PM, Godlearner said:

Its still possible for a novice sorcerer to cast a bigger spell than an Archmage.

Depends on how you choose to factor the situation... under ideal conditions for both???

If the novice only has an INT of 13 (quite likely), v an Archmage with an INT of 18+ (again, quite likely), and the Archmage has their spells all inscribed (quite likely after years of POW gain rolls), while the novice still has to cast direct from memory (again, quite likely, given the lack of POW gain rolls to be spent on Inscriptions) - the novice is getting whacked 90% of the time... and in multiple ways!

 

EDIT: so, you should rephrase it to at least something like "It's possible for a novice to cast a bigger spell than an Archmage - where the Archmage has been an idiot, and not worthy of the title!"

Edited by Shiningbrow
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On 2/26/2021 at 10:04 PM, Godlearner said:

 A size 8 and str 8 weapon master will still beat a size 18 and str 18 novice every time.

No they won't. Most of the time, sure! But not every.

And that's why I much prefer RQ over D&D and other levelling games... That one chance that the single hit from the novice takes out the master

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On 2/27/2021 at 3:36 PM, Dragon said:

Note that the weapon master has reduced the big strong novice's parry to 5% or close, so the novice isn't likely to parry it. Hence the small weak master's impale will still likely inflict a serious wound to the big strong novice.

And he would also reduce his opponent's attack chance by the same amount. Unless he's using a different weapon to parry, of course.

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I feel much the same. 

Free INT annoys me conceptually. The more sorcery you understand, the less good at it you are? Sorcery is 'something you know', but you have to strive to not really know it, and instead carry around a lot of objects? What? 

And then, in practice, it is worse. Of course sorcerers will strive to cast long duration versions of most of their spells, and then 'forget' them, and then recall them when they need to cast them again. Which means that Free INT isn't really a limit that changes game balance or anything like that - it just means that a) an already complex and book keeping heavy system has another book keeping heavy mechanic layered on it and b) this mechanic doesn't add anything interesting, or add tension, it just means that sometimes if a sorcerer wants to cast a spell, everything will be delayed by an extra three hours or more. It combines two different ways to suck fun out of the game into one! It manages to be make things more boring for both the players, and their characters! 

I thought 'what would be the net effect on the game if Sorcery spells did not reduce Free INT', and basically there it just means the sorcerer has one less bit of book keeping to do, and you no longer have three hour waits inserted into the game (and the sorcerer, who already has less useful spell options than everyone else, no longer has to deal with those options being arbitrarily reduced). Just take the whole mechanic away, and there is no consequence of it that doesn't improve the game. 

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1 hour ago, davecake said:

Free INT annoys me conceptually. The more sorcery you understand, the less good at it you are? Sorcery is 'something you know', but you have to strive to not really know it, and instead carry around a lot of objects? What? 

I agree.  The natural limit for remembering Sorcery spells should be INT, not Free INT.  But, I like the idea that knowing spirit magic reduces your effective INT as that "connection" to the spirit world creates a sort of "interference" to your memory.  So, I think my approach would simply be that Free INT = INT - spirit magic spells.  And if you don't know spirit magic, then Free INT = INT, and that seems to make sense in what you can remember.  (And you can still push spells into your "Memory Palace".)

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2 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

I agree.  The natural limit for remembering Sorcery spells should be INT, not Free INT.  But, I like the idea that knowing spirit magic reduces your effective INT as that "connection" to the spirit world creates a sort of "interference" to your memory.  So, I think my approach would simply be that Free INT = INT - spirit magic spells.  And if you don't know spirit magic, then Free INT = INT, and that seems to make sense in what you can remember.  (And you can still push spells into your "Memory Palace".)

Yeah, now just push that to species max INT vs. character INT and we are in agreement 😍

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1 minute ago, Godlearner said:

Yeah, now just push that to species max INT vs. character INT and we are in agreement 😍

I'd probably not go there as that benefits the low INT character substantially and gives no value to high INT.

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I'd probably not go there as that benefits the low INT character substantially and gives no value to high INT.

Yes, it does, but there are other limits which they must meet as well. Magic Points, POW for masteries, Read/Write etc. They have the potential, but to realize it they must get well beyond a novice state.

If this is a big concern then, how about a staggered progression, something which already exist for priests I may add (aka +20% to their POW gain rolls). Allow a sorcerer a greater access to INT for example a student uses his INT (as per current rules), but one he reaches a Journey man level sorcery does not take up Free INT, and when he is a Magi he would use Species Max INT.

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I wouldn't use species max INT either, it doesn't make much sense to me. But @jajagappa's simple "INT minus spirit magic" makes indeed more sense to me than RAW. I have the same reservations as @davecake about Free INT. It's maybe the entirely wrong analogy, but in music, knowing more songs doesn't prevent me from improvising new parts... if anything, it actually helps me improvise more.

It is, however, quite possible that Lhankor Mhy PCs have less discipline when it comes to forming memory palaces for sage sorcery. Maybe Free INT will end up being higher for actual wizards? (and therefore retcon'ing Uvartan a bit) Or maybe the RQ designers will just say that Enhance INT is enough for everybody, especially when you have a lower cast ready to sacrifice their life force to you.

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Or maybe the RQ designers will just say that Enhance INT is enough for everybody, especially when you have a lower cast ready to sacrifice their life force to you.

Yeah, except to cast that spell you need to have mastered Fire/Sky, Water or Earth runes. For a lot of sorcerers this would be an extra rune they would need to pick up.

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Enhance INT also bothers me, in that it implies sorcerers with a direct, or indirect, connection to the Fire rune are at a notable advantage compared to other sorcerers - and yet, Fire rune sorcerers and Fire magic have been pretty much never mentioned at all in the entirety of the discussion of the West (I guess you could say the Carmanian Magi, who are at the periphery of the West, at a pinch). It seems an idea that just emerged entirely from new ideas about game mechanics. And gives a huge elemental bias to sorcery that just isn’t there anywhere else. If anything, almost every other element seems to have higher importance in the history of Western sorcery, and sorcerers focussed on Powers not elements if anything more important than that. 
The simplest fix seems that Enhance INT doesn’t enhance Free INT.

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10 hours ago, jajagappa said:

I agree.  The natural limit for remembering Sorcery spells should be INT, not Free INT.  But, I like the idea that knowing spirit magic reduces your effective INT as that "connection" to the spirit world creates a sort of "interference" to your memory.  So, I think my approach would simply be that Free INT = INT - spirit magic spells.  And if you don't know spirit magic, then Free INT = INT, and that seems to make sense in what you can remember.  (And you can still push spells into your "Memory Palace".)

I disagree. Especially with the idea that spirit magic is now a spirit fragment that's attached itself to you. So, spirit magic reducing Free INT doesn't make sense to me.

 

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2 hours ago, davecake said:

Enhance INT also bothers me, in that it implies sorcerers with a direct, or indirect, connection to the Fire rune are at a notable advantage compared to other sorcerers - and yet, Fire rune sorcerers and Fire magic have been pretty much never mentioned at all in the entirety of the discussion of the West (I guess you could say the Carmanian Magi, who are at the periphery of the West, at a pinch). It seems an idea that just emerged entirely from new ideas about game mechanics. And gives a huge elemental bias to sorcery that just isn’t there anywhere else. If anything, almost every other element seems to have higher importance in the history of Western sorcery, and sorcerers focussed on Powers not elements if anything more important than that. 
The simplest fix seems that Enhance INT doesn’t enhance Free INT.

I put it to you that using the Fire Rune us only one way to cast Enhance INT. Another way would be using the Man Rune.

 

Personally, I'm not against Free INT rules. Sorcery can be extremely potent. Having access to 20 extremely potent spells would be OP.

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19 hours ago, davecake said:

Free INT annoys me conceptually. The more sorcery you understand, the less good at it you are? Sorcery is 'something you know', but you have to strive to not really know it, and instead carry around a lot of objects? What? 

As an intellectual form of magic, involving INT in a sorcerer's capacity may be pretty much unavoidable.

I think I would have preferred if the sorcerer awakened an expanded mindscape as his "magical organ" analogous to the shaman's fetch. That "organ" may very well start with the individual's INT, and may very well open with storage for runes and techniques for INT-11.

RQ3 weirdly expressed this organ as the adept's familiar(s), or (slightly less weirdly) as a sorcerer's mandala in RQ3 Land of Ninja.

Hero Wars and HeroQuest used grimoires for sources of sorcery, and presumably a sorcerer would inscribe his own personal grimoire both physically on paper and in some magical mindscape which once upon a time was expressed as being in the sorcerous Spell Plane and Adept Plane.

 

From how sorcery operates in RQG, it appears that a sorcerous spell is a magical entity produced by the formulaic spell used by the sorcerer and fed with the magic that the sorcerer pours into that entity. The sorcerer uses the runes and techniques in the spell to direct the magic (measured as MP) into the spell, and the better he knows the runes and techniques involved, the less magic he needs to pour into that entity. There is no consideration for an upper limit of his ability to pour magic (MP) into the spell, but somehow there is a cap for total manipulation of the spell based on his INT.

That cap is a solid upper limit, no uncertainties, no straining the mental and magical muscles as the load of magic funneled into that entity becomes ever harder to control. Possibly going out of control, or going rogue when the charging of that entity gets rudely interrupted.

That's a bit of a missed storytelling opportunity.

Creating a magical organ by pushing POW into however that thing may be called (Inscription, for instance) is the old RQ catch-all mechanic, also used for a shaman's fetch, an rune magicians rune pool, apparently even for a hero's hero point pool. Yes, POW is the magical attribute, and it acts a bit like a resource. With regular POW increase rolls from worship rites or other such activity, an extremely lucky character may earn 18 12 POW a year if he makes his POW gain roll every season and rolls maximum POW every season. With less extreme luck, 8 4 points of POW gain a year may be realistic.

Sorcerers burn up magic points worse than anything, so they need not just MP storages (crystals, enchantments) but regular donations (voluntary from worship rites or from donations to such storages, from bound spirits, or involuntary from Tapping).

Almost makes me wonder whether "kissing the bishop's ring" is a rite to store one personal MP into the storage device of the wizard greeted that way.

Edited by Joerg
misremembering POW gain rules - happened so rarely in my gaming career that I regularly had to look them up when it came to it.
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2 hours ago, Joerg said:

Almost makes me wonder whether "kissing the bishop's ring" is a rite to store one personal MP into the storage device of the wizard greeted that way.

Oh, I like that one! 

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Every iteration of Sorcery except RQ3 and RQG has used limits based on the Sorcerer's skill with the spell or Art as a maximum limit on how many MP you can invest, and I vastly prefer that option. And it's not just speaking of the Mongoose RuneQuest games and Mythras, Sandy Petersen's rules and RQIV also had such limits.

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11 hours ago, Shiningbrow said:

I put it to you that using the Fire Rune us only one way to cast Enhance INT. Another way would be using the Man Rune.

Well, not according to the rules. But the spell creation rules for sorcery are so extremely vague, who knows if it’s not perfectly ok to just invent a version of a spell changed to be more to your liking? 

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49 minutes ago, davecake said:

But the spell creation rules for sorcery are so extremely vague, who knows if it’s not perfectly ok to just invent a version of a spell changed to be more to your liking? 

I'm sure this is how certain "schools" develop in some areas as they find ways to logically combine, separate, command, or dispel certain runes to reach their result.  Old God Learner grimoires probably contain examples of these.  The Rokari probably frown upon or even punish those who deviate from proper forms.

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