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Doubt about sorcery spells


Jose Luis

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1) Yes, it is powerful.

So is everything else. Steal Breath is well within the power levels available.

If your starting initiate spends 3 POW, they can be maintaining spells for a year - so Find Enemy, Soul Sight, and Spirit Block for everyone, plus 6 cult specific spells. Say for BB, Axe Trance, which if backed by a 10MP enchantment (that you can easily get as a starting PC) allows your Axe skill to be increased to ~480%, ensuring automatic Special Attacks and Parries.

2) This is the Bronze Age, and people believe in reincarnation. Therefore, no one will care about the environmental effects. The idea that humans can permanently alter the environment will not occur for thousands of years. If someone is worried about you, they'll get an Initiate of Storm Bull to Sense you for Chaos, and if none found, assume you are fine.

3) Steal Breath is next to useless in combat.

The target gets a POW x 5 roll to be holding their breath (arguably you could get around that by targeting someone who is yelling a battle cry). *IF* they fail, they start taking 1d8 damage a round unless they make a CONx1 roll. If they are close enough to hurt you, they'll do more than that to you and make you fail your INTx3 roll. If they aren't, they simply retreat out of range.

4) Steal Breath is useful during sieges.

So long as no one nearby has Dispel Magic, targets will need to use Dismiss Magic to get rid of the spell - each time. As it usually takes 1 day to regain 1d6 Rune Points, a single Sorcerer can tie down dozens of initiates. Sitting in a fortress, attacks can be hurled in any direction, making it hard for the attackers to protect everyone using Spirit magic.

Edited by whitelaughter
miscounted number of cult spells.
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3 hours ago, whitelaughter said:

If your starting initiate spends 3 POW, they can be maintaining spells for a year - so Find Enemy, Soul Sight, and Spirit Block for everyone, plus 3 cult specific spells.

No, Find Enemy for a year requires six Rune Points to be permanently dedicated to keeping that spell up. Soul Sight needs another six RP.

Actually if you time it right it should only require 5 RP as you can just cast it with Extension 4 every season at the seasonal holy day.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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2 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

No, Find Enemy for a year requires six Rune Points to be permanently dedicated to keeping that spell up. Soul Sight needs another six RP.

Actually if you time it right it should only require 5 RP as you can just cast it with Extension 4 every season at the seasonal holy day.

How do you come to that conclusion? Cast the spell, spend the PP, recover the PP next holy day.

Heck, if you have Eurmal as an associated cult, someone can cast Sanctuary *any* day and declare it to be the current seasonal holy day of Eurmal.

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On 9/13/2022 at 10:26 AM, French Desperate WindChild said:

I may be wrong of course however :

The target of the spell must be in the range. 
if it is a passive spell, once the spell is cast within the range, I don’t care about the range: the spell is done the effect is on the target

if it is an active spell, the target must be in the range of the caster 

if the target moves in the same direction than the caster it is not an issue the caster can move  for sure

But , in our case the target of steal breath could be

- a being but once dead there is no more breath, but i agree the being may move

- an area: this area cannot move. And that is my point. The sorcerer must stay in the range of the source of mp.

As I understand the target area is not a radius around the sorcerer or anything able to move. It is « there » and nowhere else

But the target is 'the air'. The air is a very large target, but the sorcerer can only affect a specific volume each round. If it is always the exact same specific volume, that was converted the previous round. There is no air there now to convert. If the remaining atmospheric air collapsed in to the vacuum (a modern idea of Earthly physics), the person inside could breathe. Glorantha works differently. The winds will fill in that area eventually, but not immediately. (And not even within days during the Windstop.)

This is entirely consistent with the person asphyxiating. Ergo, the winds don't fill the space in that round. Hence, for 'per round' to make sense, the area must be any air within the range of the sorcerer.

The best comparison I find with other sorcery spells are the Illusion spells, i.e. Create X. Those target an area, and then can move 'The caster of an illusion must concentrate on it to cause the illusion to change or move up to a MOV rate of 12'. So the area (the illusion) necessarily moves.

Conflagration specifies '...in a place' and specifies it does not move. Steal Breath lacks that additional statement. Call Cold is a radius around the caster. So if the caster moves, the area should. Call Light doesn't mention whether it is an area, or if you could cast it on a hand and move around it with. The Attract spells target someone in range, and then the range of the affect is centered on them.

Of course, you can apply Earthly physics and <there> to the spell in your game as you wish. This is just my two copper pieces.

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11 minutes ago, whitelaughter said:

How do you come to that conclusion? Cast the spell, spend the PP, recover the PP next holy day.

Heck, if you have Eurmal as an associated cult, someone can cast Sanctuary *any* day and declare it to be the current seasonal holy day of Eurmal.

From the Q&A: https://wellofdaliath.chaosium.com/home/catalogue/publishers/chaosium/runequest-roleplaying-in-glorantha/cha4028-runequest-roleplaying-in-glorantha-qa-by-chapter/cha4028-runequest-roleplaying-in-glorantha-chapter-14-rune-magic-spells/#ib-toc-anchor-76

"Rune points stacked in Extension and the affected spell cannot be regained until the spell expires."

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3 minutes ago, Dragon said:

Similar wording is also in the Red Book of Magic.

image.png.3533ec51ee7e6e3cf043a4785d06167b.png

Edited by PhilHibbs
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40 minutes ago, Dragon said:

Glorantha works differently. The winds will fill in that area eventually, but not immediately. (And not even within days during the Windstop.)

I have no source saying that wind or air just around the area cannot fill it the next round so for me it can (not because earth rules, I always try to not use irl to demonstrate anything in glorantha), because wind is motion. But I like your point about windstop

In my opinion you steal air in a closed jar, there is no more air next round, you steal air outside, there is "new air" next round

you steal light, there is light next round (because I cannot imagine that no light = darkness) maybe light less hard for troll, but light,

you steal darkness, there is darkness next round

you steal water, it is like air : in an ocean / see / river, there is still water next round, in a jar, pool, etc.. there is no more water

you steal earth... it depends also of what kind of earth it is, it may become a cave (no collapse), a hole (nothing upside), or "new earth" '= collapse, then a hole somewhere upside), like in minecraft when you mine stone or gravel

 

and here because water comparison gives me some movies pictures, yes there is a point : we may have a spell able to move the "bubble" with us

so for me because that's sorcery

you want to steal air in a fixed area : :20-element-air::20-sorcery-tap:

you want to have the ability of moving your "bubble" : :20-element-air::20-sorcery-tap::20-power-movement::20-sorcery-combine:

maybe without combine but seems to me that,  without this difficulty (at least 1 more rune), the op issue will be too hard to manage

and that is the case for create XXX, movable illusions have 3 runes, create wall of flames only 2 (and cannot be moved)

 

* note that i dont say tap water create a air bubble, i say tap water create a void bubble.

if you want an air bubble in the ocean you summon air, you don't tap water.

and here a new issue : it should be harder to summon air in a hostile place (deep ocean) than in a "friendly place" (smoke in a house) but we have nothing (mm I think, I m not sure) about this

 

41 minutes ago, Dragon said:

Steal Breath lacks that additional statement.

in fact that is the true issue, there is no statement 🙂 And the answer will probably be MGF 😛

 

As it is not too important for me, I m able to wait for the sorcery supplement ( I m not able to wait for cults supplement by the way, but this is another story hahaha)

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As I said I did not allow Steal Breath because it is Tap. But for active spells I allow to move the focus of the spell without adding a Motion rune, as it is not so much, "I move the spell" that "I recast the spell every round". So as long as it is within sight and range of the sorcerer, I allow to shift the focus. 

However the tap is also gradual in time, so there is no vacuum and no thunderclap (as you would have in the RW if suddenly you disintegrate several cubic meters of air to a vacuum), and little risk of asphyxiation, except in enclosed spaces. That is why the attack version requires a POW vs POW roll, because it needs to be fixed on the target, so they have tapped air around themselves all the time. Someone in a closed room with relatively tight doors and windows would be affected even if they win the POW vs POW, but that would stop the moment they are in open air. 

About the intervention of air spirits or cultists, that depends a lot where you are, but I suspect that all air beings in several km and will realize it, so now it is a matter of where you are using it. In Arolanit there is no spirit left to challenge you. In the Stormwalk mountains the sorcerer will be assaulted in a matter of minutes. Wind Voices probably notice "a disruption in the air" but probably cannot pinpoint exactly where, though the longer it lasts the easier it is to know where it is, and surely take action.

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13 hours ago, Dragon said:

thanks, you've provided me with the errata pages I was looking for when I stumbled over this site!

Sadly, they simply reinforce my belief that this edition should never have been sent to the printers; knee jerk responses to problems that happened due to no playtesting or editing. Oh well, there are other games.

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A spell with the motion rune added to the portfolio would be able to follow a target, possibly easing the concentration requirements.

I wonder whether one could create a "Tap and Charge" spell that puts the tapped MP into MP storage. Would a spell like that have to be active(ly controlled by the sorcerer)?

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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I would say the tapping itself needs to be active, but not the storage. We need some clarification whether the tapped MP (in excess of POW) persist in the spell as it is while the duration lasts, as some people, myself included, believe, as in that case you do not need that extra charge step. So my view is that the spell is active, stops tapping when the sorcerer stops concentrating but the MPs are available for casting for the rest of the duration. If that is wrong and the moment you stop concentrating you dissipate all the MP in excess of POW, then it would make such a spell interesting, possibly adding the Command technique, to add MP storage to the spell. I would actually prefer Command Magic, but Magic is effectively a placeholder and I would not add two extra modifiers for that change. 

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As I understand the intent of the RQG sorcery rules, a sorcerous spell is a magical creature called into being by the sorcerer's investment of magic and will. It works as an ephemeral spirit.

Are there ways for the sorcerer to pre-program activities or responses of the spell?

For comparison, let's look at shades or lunes. Are effects like the fearshock attack of a shade or the madness attack of a lune active abilities, or are they triggered by entering the volume of these elementals? Could a sorcerous spell act similarly conditional?

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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I would play that the spell doesn't actually destroy the physical air, but instead removes the essence of it - not unlike, say, removing oxygen from the air that we breathe (hence, the "breath" element). So, the air remains in place, but couldn't be used for breathing (or fires, etc). It's dead air.

And, unless there is a bit of a breeze, that air will stay in place (requiring the location of the spell to be moved each round). It will dissipate, but not necessarily quickly. Spirits will notice it if they go near, but unless someone is near it, it's not overly noticeable.

As for the active bit - sure, you can cast more spells - if you pass the concentration checks. And, yes, both spells can stay up... if you pass the concentration checks regularly.

Also.. I'd say that once you stop concentrating on it, the spell is gone. (that's the point of it being Active). Any MPs over your POW dissipate basically instantly. (if, as @French Desperate WindChild suggests, the MPs stay, then you're effectively saying that an Active spell can also be Passive... and I think that way leads to hell...). Of course, one can always come up with an Enhance POW spell! And, given that INT is usually seen as harder to increase and effect than other stats, there's not a great reason to suggest it should be a 4:1 ration of Strength to Stat... perhaps 3:1 (and, I'd allow inclusion of the Man Rune to bring that down).

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1 hour ago, JRE said:

I would say the tapping itself needs to be active, but not the storage. We need some clarification whether the tapped MP (in excess of POW) persist in the spell as it is while the duration lasts, as some people, myself included, believe, as in that case you do not need that extra charge step. So my view is that the spell is active, stops tapping when the sorcerer stops concentrating but the MPs are available for casting for the rest of the duration.

The spell is the tapping the air, it's not tap the air and store magic points. Tapping continues until either the spell stops and the tapping ends. If concentration breaks, the spell ends. Sensible sorcerers will have plenty of empty Magic Point Enchantments (remember you can move a mp / round into storage), or have prepared an ongoing ritual to use the mps.

1 hour ago, JRE said:

If that is wrong and the moment you stop concentrating you dissipate all the MP in excess of POW, then it would make such a spell interesting, possibly adding the Command technique, to add MP storage to the spell. I would actually prefer Command Magic, but Magic is effectively a placeholder and I would not add two extra modifiers for that change. 

Note that the Magic Rune is not a place holder:

Runes and Techniques Used (page 391)
Change
Correction

The presence of the Magic Rune indicates that this spell can be used with any Rune.

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Thanks for the clarification on the Magic rune and the intent. I stand on my opinion that in that case adding Command Magic would be a new spell that allows you to keep the magic points for the Duration. I would still limit the storage to double POW, but if you have the extraplanar MP storage that Jeff was proposing for Zzaburi, it could also be filled this way.

I do not have any problem with having active and passive components in a complex spell, but I would not allow to turn on and off the active part.

As I see it, you could replace the RQ3 spell Fom / Set Water, either by two spells Form Water (Command Water Motion) and Set water (Command Water Stasis) that would allow you to shape water as you wish (amount determined by spell strength) in the Active part (Form Water), and with the Set Water part the formed shape would remain without concentration while the Duration lasts (and no external factors intervene), but at the end of the Duration water will just flow down naturally. Probably the ratio Strength / affected quantity of water would be different, with Set Water affecting more water per point of strength. However my interpretation of the spell design rules would allow a recreation of Form / Set Water spell (Command Combine Water Motion Stasis), a much more complex spell, and affecting less water than Set Water, but allowing you to avoid the concentration roll and a single casting roll rather than 2.

If we accept the spell as magic entity, that I do not know if it is still the idea, it would mak sense to have the active / passive duality, as in the active phase you are continuously controlling / ordering the spell, and then in the passive stage, it remains present in the world, but no further changes are possible. We have examples of turn on and off activity in Spirit magic (the control spells and the wall spells) so I would allow such in some cases, but requiring complex sorceries.

 

 

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7 hours ago, Scotty said:

Tapping continues until either the spell stops and the tapping ends. If concentration breaks, the spell ends. Sensible sorcerers will have plenty of empty Magic Point Enchantments (remember you can move a mp / round into storage), or have prepared an ongoing ritual to use the mps.

So if I'm getting this right:

- While the spell is active, the sorcerer gets 1D6 MP/round (or more if additional strength has been paid for)
- The sorcerer can move 1 MP/round into a storage, but they won't be able to keep up. Assistants might be able to help keep up with the MPs if they cast Drain Soul (or some similar MP leeching spell) on the sorcerer to help moving MPs into storage.
- When the spell stops, any MPs in excess of the sorcerer's max are lost. They may or may not have to roll for concentration if they cast another spell using all this excess MP before they dissipate.
- The tapping can be cast during a Passive Ritual spell to feed more MPs into it. I assume that doing the tapping during an Active Ritual spell requires a concentration roll, although I don't know if it's needed once, or every round that both spells are active.

Ludovic aka Lordabdul -- read and listen to  The God Learners , the Gloranthan podcast, newsletter, & blog !

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On 9/16/2022 at 7:32 PM, Lordabdul said:

So if I'm getting this right:

- While the spell is active, the sorcerer gets 1D6 MP/round (or more if additional strength has been paid for)
- The sorcerer can move 1 MP/round into a storage, but they won't be able to keep up. Assistants might be able to help keep up with the MPs if they cast Drain Soul (or some similar MP leeching spell) on the sorcerer to help moving MPs into storage.
- When the spell stops, any MPs in excess of the sorcerer's max are lost. They may or may not have to roll for concentration if they cast another spell using all this excess MP before they dissipate.

Yes

On 9/16/2022 at 7:32 PM, Lordabdul said:


- The tapping can be cast during a Passive Ritual spell to feed more MPs into it. I assume that doing the tapping during an Active Ritual spell requires a concentration roll, although I don't know if it's needed once, or every round that both spells are active.

If this is part of a planned ritual, in a safe place, the gm may allow auto success on the concentration rolls. 

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