Wizardry (Magic) house rules and Enchantments
I think I'm going to post house rules to the forum. A previous example would be the Lucky Trinkets, Heirlooms and Named Items thread. For the most part, you'll need access to the original material to utilize my tweaks. Up in the series is Sorcery (specifically Demon Summoning) and Alchemy. I think they fall far enough away from how the systems are handled in the published material to make it somewhat worth reading. Feed back is welcome.
Some of these are in various states of playtesting but in general I've been tooling around with them for a while so I decided it was time to let them wild.
These rules apply to both the BGB and the magic system in Classic Fantasy. They exist to enhance the caster's spell skill level and to allow guidelines for magical Enchantments.
A well prepared wizard knows that success in magic means having the right tools. An invaluable tool are spell components. Spellcasting can be augmented by using spell components to manipulation of the Laws of Sympathetic Magic. By using items that align the caster with the spell, the spell's target or the intended outcome of the spell they can give a small boost to their casting ability.
Laws of Sympathetic Magic
Contagion - Once in Contact, Always in Contact
Similarity - The Image Equals the Object
Selecting spell components for a spell is a process of making connections using the Laws of Sympathetic Magic as a guide. The item should have some connection to the spell. Cobwebs would help in a spell of Spider Climb. Fresh ashes would help with a Fireball spell. Many of these ingredients are present in the wizard's environment or can be found inexpensively. However if the wizard invests in the items, searching for rare components or very specific components that take effort to come by, their magic can be significantly augmented.
Bonuses are generally arranged as such; +5%, +10%, +15%, +20%. A component that is very effective once might be less effective other times depending on the situation and how it changes. As a rule, individual components will generally be worth a +5%, occasionally a +10%. Anything higher is more rare.
Components may be combined in the casting of a spell and their skill bonuses stack up to a total of +20%. A wizard may use one component and cast on his INT (DEX) Rank. A second component sets the casting back 5 INT (DEX) Ranks. A third component sets the caster back another 5 INT (DEX) Ranks. If a wizard uses four basic components in a round to stack his +5% bonuses up to a +20% they will be going at a -15 INT (DEX) Rank. Sometimes this pushes them into the next round, depending on their Intelligence.
Note: when I play and a PC or NPC is casting a spell I have their spell go off on the INT rather than their DEX. I just count down INT and DEX at the same time. This is different from published rules but I find it works well for me and I like how it affects combat. Actually, I've added options to the Initiative system incorporating held actions and quick actions. I need to check my notes to make sure I write them down correctly, but I'll add them to this thread when I have a chance.
So that's the short bit. Enchantments are up next and that's more involved.
There are many items in a wizard’s arsenal; staves, wands, ritual robes, rings, rods, amulets and the athame for example. These items serve a wizard well, for not only are they symbols of their avocation, but are tools that can be personally invested with power. This investment is called an Enchantment. Some Enchantments allow the wizard to use the item as a reserve for magical resources (mp). Swords and staves, and amulets and rings are excellent for this. These enchantments work as per the Make Staff (or whatever it is) in the core rules.
Other Enchantments store spells that can later be cast. Anyone holding the object can spend their own magic points and use the spell skills embedded within the object to cast the spell. The limits on how much of a bonus the item gives depends upon the wizard who enchants it. A wizard can only enchant up to the critical of the spell’s casting skill. So a wizard with an 80% in Sleep can enchant a stone (for example) with the Sleep spell up to 16%. Anyone who pick up the enchanted stone can attempt to cast the spell by expending their own magic points and rolling 16 or under on d00.
OPTION: Items that wear away over use can only hold one enchantment. An example of this would be clothing or scrolls. However, it the item in question is of exceptional quality it can hold more than one enchantment. So a pair of boots might be enchanted with a Silence spell. A master crafted pair of boots owned by the exiled Baron Kostern von Viktul, master thief and arcanist, might hold Silence, Sleep, and Spider Climb spells.
Another type of enchantment embeds the magical ability to perform certain skills into an item. Skill Enchantments work like the spell enchantments above. A Wizard can enchant an object to hold the knowledge of a skill up to double their Critical value in that skill. So, von Viktul creates a cloak with the Hide skill. Von Viktul’s skill is Hide 80%. This means he can enchant the cloak up to a skill of Hide 32%. Anyone using that cloak gets the 32% bonus to their hide skill. Often, the type of skill enchanted into the item has some connection with the item itself. A sword might have a combat skill attached to it, for example. However, this is not necessary.
OPTION: If the bonuses for skills feels too high for your game, feel free to adjust them to Spell levels. The enchanted Skill would be the Critical value of the enchanter.
A fourth kind of enchantment involves increasing the bearer’s Stats. Stat Enchantments drain the enchanter temporarily at 4 points of caster’s Stat per 1 point of Enchantment boost. An enchanter can only reduce their own stat down to 1 point during this process. The reduced stat slowly returns to its starting point over time as per the healing rules. So, if a wizard starts with a Strength of 16 they can enchant an object up to +3 STR, leaving themselves 4 points in their own Strength. Their own Strength would return over time. If a wizard has a Strength of 17 they can enchant an object up to a +4 STR, leaving themselves 1 point in Strength.
Yet another method of Enchanting involves Damage and Protection Enhancements. This allows an object to do more damage in combat or allows an item to protect the bearer in combat. To determine the cost of these enchantments, use the Demon Abilities Table as a reference. (I have the cost worked out but it’s in a notebook I don’t have available to me right now. I think I settled on for every 4 mp the wizard invests in the enchantment, they get 1 point on the Demon table).
Costs of Enchantments
Enchanting is a magical skill that starts at 00.
When a wizard decides to enchant an object they have to spend the POW point to allow the item to take the Enchantment. They then complete the enchanting ritual and imbue the item with the desired power, be it magical reserve, spell, skill, stat, or damage/protection bonus. Each enchantment costs the wizard one (1) permanent POW point.
OPTION: Should you desire, an additional POW sacrifice might be required to attune the item to being able to receive enchantments.
Sometimes a wizard will cooperate with an expert to create more powerful enchantments. In this case a second person’s skills or stats can be used to create the enchanted item. The enchanter still must pay a permanent point of POW. Additionally, the second person involved in the enchantment must also pay a permanent point of POW.
For example, Jaana is a wizard who is trying to create a powerful weapon. She only has a Sword 25%. However, she contracts out with Landara, captain of the guard of Havensrest. Landara is a master swordswoman of 180%. Through the enchanting ritual Jaana loses 1 point of permanent POW and Landara loses 1 point of permanent POW. Jaana’s sword now has a bonus of 72% (or 36% if you are using the less powerful option).
Types of Enchantments
Cost: 1 POW
Result: Wizard’s new POW in extra MP.
Cost: 1 POW
Result: spell can be cast at 1/5 of wizards initial spell skill. (Acts as a bonus as well.)
Cost: 1 POW
Result: Item provides bonus to the user’s skill at 1/5 the wizards skill x2,
Cost: 1 POW
Result: for every 4 points of stat the wizard can imbue 1 stat to the item. Caster must end spell with at least 1 point left in their characteristic’s stat.
Cost: 1 POW
Result: wizard spends mp to increase damage or protection qualities of the item. (I think it’s 4 to 1 on the Demon Table).
So Jaana is making her sword. She’s a wizard who is hearkening to the call of the Adventurer’s life. She has a POW of 16. First she creates an amulet to use as an mp storage device, leaving her with POW 15 and 31 mp. Jaana knows that the adventuring life is dangerous. She invests her two enhancements. The first is a protection enhancement that she puts 28 mp into. Dropping her POW to 14 and her mp to 30. She then places a damage enchantment on the blade, putting 28 mp into it and dropping her POW to 13 and her mp to 29.
She enlists the help of her friend Landara and the sword now has a combat bonus of 72%, leaving Jaana at POW 12 and taking 1 permanent POW away from Landara as well.
Jaana goes to her mentor Govid the Wiseacre and asks if he will help in the creation of her sword. He agrees and imbues the sword with a spell that Jaana does not know yet. He know it at Spell 90% so the sword gains the spell at Spell 18%. Both Jaana and Govid lose a point of POW, dropping Jaana down to 11. Govid scolds Jaana, warning her that she is leaving herself weakened and open to magical attack. Jaana ignores the warning.
Jaana wants more of an edge, but doesn’t have friends willing to invest Str or Dex into her sword. She herself has a Dex of 15 though, so she puts down a DEX +3 enchantment, raising her effective Dex to 18 and losing another point of POW. She is now at POW 10.
Jaana has a powerful weapon. She also burned a ton of POW on it.
I think that's about it for this. The only additions I have are the use of Ritual and how much time Enchantments take. Both of those are in New York and I am currently traveling.
Hmm. It seems I can't edit the title anymore. I'd like to change it to include Summonings and Alchemy. I think it would be good to contain it all in this thread instead of spamming the forum.