What is Magick?

As I'm sure you all know, the universe is ruled by a series of laws. Positive particles attract negative particles, mass has an innate attractive force, etc. Magick is the art of bending these laws after one's own will. A Mage will make lighting strike from a cloudless sky, grab fireballs out of thin air and lift heavy rocks with a mere thought. He may even manipulate time itself as he sees fit.

But this comes with a cost. Nature has proven persistent in its desire to adhere to these laws and bending them is a task indeed. Magick is a tiring craft and the Mage will loose Fatigue whenever he uses his skills. Fatigue is regained by resting, by drinking Fatigue Potions or other means.

The Colleges of Magick

Magick is divided into 16 different Colleges. Each College concentrates on one particular field, such as the Temporal College's studies on time and how to manipulate it and the White Necromantic College's knowledge of healing and mending. Each College has 5 spells available of varying potency. More potent spells aren't for the weak of mind, however, only a Mage of the highest Willpower and Level has a chance of learning the more impressive Spells.

Conveyance - Conveyance deals with movement and distance

  • Disarm - disarms your enemies
  • Unlocking Cantrip - The target is unlocked (but not opened)
  • Unseen force - knocks back your enemy
  • Spatial Distortion - The caster is teleported to a nearby square of her chosing
  • Teleport - The caster and companions are transported to a known location

Divination - Divination deals with discovering information and things hidden

  • Sense Alignment - Lets the caster sense the alignment of all creatures around her
  • See Contents - see the contents of a container
  • Read Aura - The caster can see the underlying statistics of the targeted creature
  • Sense Hidden - helps the caster see invisible or hidden things
  • Divine Magick - The magickal properties of one item in the casters inventory are divined

Air - Elemental Magick of Air and Wind.

  • Vitality of Air - Increases the Constitution of the target
  • Poison Vapours - Creates a cloud of caustic gas, centered at the target.
  • Call Wind - Creates a gust of wind, extending in all directions from the caster.
  • Body of Air - The target's body is transformed to air, making him immaterial, tranclucent and capable of floating.
  • Call Air Elemental - An Elemental with command over the winds. The Air Elemental can toss his enemies around with ease, often throwing them into walls or other obstacles.

Earth - Elemental Magick of Earth and Stone.

  • Strength of Earth - Increases the Strength of the target.
  • Stone Toss - Lob a stone at the selected target
  • Wall of Stone - Creates a stone block in the targeted tile
  • Body of Earth - Turns the target's body to stone, increasing his defence at the cost of speed
  • Call Earth Elemental - Summons a mighty Earth Elemental with a powerful melee blow

Fire - Elemental Magick of Fire and Heat.

  • Agility of Fire - Increases the Dexterity of the target
  • Wall of Fire- A wall of fire erupts at the designated tile
  • Fireflash - Conjures up a deadly ball of superheated plasma
  • Body of Fire - Target is immolated, gaining fire resistance and the capability to burn foes with an unarmed attack
  • Call Fire Elemental - A Fire Elemental burns his foes with deadly flames

Water - Elemental Magick of Water and Ice.

  • Purity of Water - Increases the Beauty of the target
  • Call Fog - Conjures up a thick fog
  • Squall of Ice - A storm of ice and sleet is created, centered at the chosen tile
  • Body of Water - The target is made translucent and capable of water movement.
  • Call Water Elemental - This elemental will attack in melee with powerful blows that damage both Health and Fatigue. Not as brutal as its Earthen counterpart but useful nevertheless.

Force - The spells of the Force College direct pure energy

  • Shield of Protection - Creates a defensive energy wall around the target, increasing Armour Class and the various Resistances.
  • Jolt - Allows the caster to discharge electricity into surrounding creatures
  • Wall of Force - Summons an unbreakable wall of force at a point chosen by the caster.
  • Lightning Bolt - Lightning surges from the caster, striking everything between him and the targeted spot
  • Disintegrate - Eliminates the bindings between the atoms of a target, completely eradicating the unfortunate object or person.

Mental - The Magick of influencing the mind

  • Charm - This will cause the target to be friendly towards the caster if a save is not made
  • Stun - The spell will stun the target for a few seconds
  • Stupefy - The target must save or have her Intelligence halved for 1-2 hours
  • Nightmare - All creatures near the caster must save or flee in terror
  • Dominate Will - Take control of any creature.

Meta - Meta Spells affect other Spells in varying ways

  • Resist Magick - The target is given Magick Resistance
  • Disperse Magick - Any magickal effects on the target are removed
  • Dweomer Shield - Magick is no longer able to operate on the target
  • Bonds of Magick - Negates the next magickal attack aimed at the caster
  • Reflective Shield - A shield is erected around the caster, reflecting spells that hit it back at some additional Fatigue drain

Morphing - The Morphing Spells change the substance of the target

  • Hardened Hands - The hand-to-hand combat damage of the target is increased
  • Weaken - The strength of the target is reduced
  • Shrink - The target is reduced to half it's original size
  • Flesh to Stone - Converts flesh to stone
  • Polymorph - Target is transformed to a sheep as long as the caster maintains the spell.

Nature - Nature Magick controls plants, animals and certain natural forces

  • Charm Beast - Any animals nearby will have a reaction of at least Good towards the caster.
  • Entangle - roots the target in place (but they can still attack if targets are within range)
  • Control Beast - Take control over an animal
  • Succour Beast - Summons an animal friendly to the caster and able to aid him in combat.
  • Regenerate - Greatly increase the casters healing rate.

Black Necromantic - This College handles Spells that affect life energy in a negative way, such as the powerful Death spell

  • Harm - Inflicts some minor damage on the target
  • Conjure Spirit - Communicate with the spirit of a dead creature
  • Summon Undead - summons an undead creature that attacks anything near it
  • Create undead - creates an undead creature out of dead things nearby to fight for you
  • Quench Life - Kill target outright

White Necromantic - Restorative Magick, healing and blessing

  • Minor Healing - A few points of health are restored
  • Halt Poison - Poison on the target is negated
  • Major Healing - Target regains a fair amount of health
  • Sanctuary - creates an area arround the target that repells undead
  • Resurrection - Revives a dead being

Phantasm - The Art of deception and illusion.

  • Illuminate - The area around the target creature is made brighter
  • Flash - temporarily blinds the target
  • Blur Sight - The target is more difficult to see and be hit
  • Phantasmal Fiend - Creates the illusion of a formidable monster
  • Invisibility - The target is made invisible, except when attacking

Summoning - You can summon various creatures with these Magicks.

  • Plague of Insects - A swarm of insects appears,
  • Orc Champion - Summons an Orc to aid you
  • Guardian Ogre - Summons an Ogre to fight for you
  • Hellgate - Summons a demon aide
  • Familiar - The caster is granted a familiar

Temporal - Deals with the manipulation of time

  • Magelock - The target portal (a window or door) is magickaly sealed
  • Congeal Time - The speed of any enemies in the vicinity of the caster is halved
  • Stasis - The target is immobilized
  • Hasten - The speed of the target is doubled
  • Tempus Fugit - The speed of the caster and party is increased while the speed of everything else in the world is reduced

Note that the Black Necromantic and White Necromantic Colleges are named for how the practitioners of these Colleges are viewed by society. The alignment of a practitioner has nothing to do with what College he uses. Also, no two Colleges are mutually exclusive. There's nothing preventing a Mage from being well versed in both White Necromantic and Black Necromantic at the same time, or Water and Fire.

Magickal Items

Mundane items can be infused with the power of Magick, but this is a long and complicated process. The results, however, can be awe-inspiring. The most common items are staffs or rings infused with Magick and can act as power sources for a Mage. The Mage may draw on their supply of energy for his Spells before he has to start taxing his own energy reserve. These items will then recharge, in effect acting as a permanent increase to the amount of Spells a Mage can cast before resting.

There are many more ways for a Mage to enchant an item. Weapons can be enchanted to cause additional damage, armour may be granted protection from magickal damage and rings given the power to cast spells without the ring user having knowledge of the spell. The only limit is the imagination of the Mage creating the enchantment, and in the case of some more complicated enchantments, his life span.

The Conflict With Technology

As we said earlier, Magick is the art of altering the laws of nature. Because of this, Magick and Technology do not mix. The power of a Technologist is based on his ability to use those laws of nature in his advantage. Thus, if a Mage suddenly decides that electrons should attract each other instead of positively charged particles in the vicinity of a Technologist with electric equipment, there's a good chance he'll break the equipment in question. On the other hand, a mentally strong Technologist might simply force the laws of nature to stay the way they are, despite the efforts of the Mage, causing his spell to fizzle.

Every being in Arcanum who uses Technology or Magic has an aptitude to either one. The more skilled he is with one the more he can enforce the laws of that belief. Therefore, if a strong Mage faces a weak Technologist his spells will function perfectly but the Technologist's weaponry will constantly break down due to the Mage's tinkering with the laws of nature.

All in all, a Mage of Arcanum is a powerful individual, with a wide repertoire of mighty spells at his command.