Magical Spells

Casting Spells

In order to cast a spell, a wizard must be able to speak clearly and have one hand free to make gestures. They may hold a wand or other magical implement in their gesturing hand, but may not use it to wield a weapon, shield, or light.

Range:

        Self: the spell can only target the caster.

        Touch: the caster must actually touch the target, requiring a roll to-hit if they attempt to avoid

        Close: 6 inches on the table, or about 30 feet, (the range of a thrown weapon).

        Bowshot: 24 inches on the table, or about 120 feet (the range of  a war bow).

        Sight: any target on which the caster can establish a line-of-sight.

Duration: many spells last for a specified length of time (such as 1 round or 1 day), others have special durations:

        Instant: the spell takes effect and ends immediately, although it may have lasting effects

        Concentration: the spell lasts so long as it is focused on every round (taking a combat action)

        Lasting: the spell lasts until something specified in the effect breaks or triggers it

        Permanent: the spell lasts until it is dispelled or otherwise broken.

Target: most spells affect a single thing: a person, another spell, etc. Some have special targets:

        Small Group: up to a dozen clustered individuals, or up to two crews under a single leader.

        Army: any large group not separated by more than 10 feet.

Preparing Spells

Before a spell can be cast, it must be imprinted in the caster’s mind by the consultation of books of magic, known as preparing or “memorizing” the spell. The arcane formulae and exercises contained in the illuminated tomes create an inhuman thought-form in the caster’s mind, which can then be released upon the world to obtain the caster’s will. This requires adequate lighting, peace and quiet, and freedom from fatigue, and the process takes about an hour. However, the process itself is quite mentally taxing, and each attempt after the first in each day has a 1-in-6 chance of causing the caster to become fatigued.

A wizards mental training prepares their brain to accept the eldritch patterns of spells; the process becomes easier with practice and is somewhat influenced by more general mental exercise (represented by the character’s Kenning modifier).

Beginning Spells

Rank 1 Journeyman Wizards begin with a grimoire containing Eyes of the Overworld, Healer’s Hands, and one spell from each of the following lists (roll 1d6 twice): 

  1. Allemagne’s Spell of Slumber
  2. Allemagne’s Subtle Bridle
  3. Foedor’s Fiery Lance
  4. Muniere’s Puissant Mantle of Stealth
  5. Curse of the Astute Agony
  6. Lathgertha’s Compelling Eye

  1. Allemagne’s Blessed Nepenthe
  2. Blessing of the Noble Heart
  3. Bright Light of Sirius
  4. Hervor’s Umbral Ward
  5. The Rune of Portals
  6. Tatiana’s Enviable Countenance

The Basic Grimoire

Most spells are listed by the name of their creator; those of ancient origin are so noted.

Allemagne’s Blessed Nepenthe

Complexity 1, Range close, Target small group, Duration one hour, Save none

Effect: the target is relieved of pain, fear, grief, and despair for the duration of the spell.

Allemagne’s Spell of Slumber

Complexity 1, Range bowshot, Target small group of mortals, Duration instant, Save Presence

Effect: the targets fall into a deep sleep, and will not wake for several hours without being shaken or struck.

Allemagne’s Subtle Bridle

Complexity 1, Range touch, Target single person, Duration indefinite, Save Presence

Effect: the caster wraps a bridle ‘round the mind of the target, causing them to become susceptible to the caster’s whims, regarding him or her as a trusted friend.

Allemagne’s Gentle Suggestion

Allemagne’s Cunning Leash

Allemagne’s Curt Dismissal

Variation: Timæus’s Litany of Law (Complexity 6, Range hearing, Target Lawful army): any lawful creature hearing the caster’s words will become convinced of their truth of purpose, following them loyally to accomplish any Lawful end, but turning on the caster if they behave as less than a paragon of Law.

Blessing of the Noble Heart (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 1, Range touch, Target single person, Duration lasting, Save none

Effect: the target is blessed with fortune that allows them to avoid one Death & Dismemberment effect, which ends the spell.

Variation: War Song of the Sun and Moon (complexity 2, Range close, Target small group, Duration concentration): the caster’s companions are protected by the Blessing of the Noble Heart, which ends if the caster’s concentration on the song fails.

Variation: Perfected Adamant Aegis of Timæus (complexity 5, duration 3 rounds): the target takes no hit point damage from any source and cannot suffer any wounding effect for the duration of the spell.

Curse of the Astute Agony (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 1, Range sight, Target single person, Duration lasting, Save none

Effect: once laid upon the target, the spell may be instantly invoked to counter the target’s current action by afflicting them with an exquisite stab of pain, ending the spell.

Eyes of the Overworld (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 1, Range self, Target self, Duration concentration, Save none

Effect: the caster can perceive the auras of magical creatures, objects, spells and other phenomena.

Variation: Fel Light of Ngah (complexity 3, Range close): the caster conjures the eldritch light of a distant star and holds it in hand. It shines like a lantern, and all things upon which the light falls show their auras, allowing all to see as if possessed of the Eyes of the Overworld.

Foedor’s Fiery Lance

Complexity 1, Range close, Target: single person, Duration instant, Save defense

Effect: shoot out a ray of burning white fire at a close target, doing 2d6 damage on a hit.

Variation: The Excellent Prismatic Spray (Complexity 2, Target small group) multiple colored rays shoot forth from the caster’s hands, doing 1d6+1 damage to each target hit.

Variation: Foedor’s Veridian Panoply (Complexity 3, Duration concentration): green lightning crackles about the caster, doing 1d6-1 damage to anyone striking them and shooting forth from the caster’s hands once each round, doing 2d6 damage on a hit.

Variation: Foedor’s Deadly Umbral Anelace (Complexity 3): the caster conjures a dagger of black shadows and flings it at the target, doing 1d6 damage per HD of the caster if it hits.

Variation: Dark Maladiction of Timæus (Complexity 4, Target: all foes, Save none):  the malediction snuffs out the life of all living foes having no more than one HD.

Variation: Foedor’s Infinite Obsidian Rain (Complexity 6, Range bowshot, Target army): the caster summons forth a vast rain of obsidian shards that fall upon their enemies like myriad arrows, doing 1d6+1 damage to every foe.

Foedor’s Fuligin Armaments

Complexity 2, Range close, Target small group, Duration one hour, Save none

Effect: the caster assembles a shadowing panoply about their allies, equivalent to a lance, shield, helm, and mail. Nocturnal creatures are further protected from harsh light.

Variation: Foedor’s Timely Conjuration of Materiel (Complexity 4, Target army, Duration one day)

Bright Light of Sirius (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 1, Range touch, Target self, Duration one hour, Save none

Effect: the caster conjures the light of Sirius, the brightest star, and holds it in hand. It shines twice as bright as a lantern.

Variation: Glimpse of Sawel (complexity 3, Duration concentration): the caster conjures the a struggling mote of the Sun herself, capturing it briefly in hand. The light it generates is as bright as a summer’s day, and affects sensitive creatures as true sunlight. This spell does 1 point of damage to the caster each round it is maintained.

Variation: Light of Truth (complexity 6, Duration concentration): the terrible light conjured in the caster’s hand shines like the sun, revealing magic like the Fel Light of Ngah, dispelling invisibility as Lathgertha’s Note of Revelation and banishing horrors as the Bright Invocation of Timæus, and destroying outright any undead, demon or horror with 3 or fewer hit dice..

Grimrun’s Sagacious Nullification

Complexity 2, Range sight, Target single spell, Duration instant, Save none

Effect: bring about the undoing of a single spell, ending it’s effects. If this spell is prepared it may be cast as part of a countering attempt to succeed automatically.

Variation: Potent Word of Timæus (Complexity 4, Range close, Target all spells): speak a single word of power than breaks all spells in the caster’s presence, ending their effects.

Grimrun’s Treacherous Usurpation

Complexity 3, Range sight, Target single spell, Duration instant, Save none

Effect: a single spell that targets the caster of this spell instead targets the caster of the targeted spell. If this spell is prepared it may be used as part of a countering attempt.

Grimrun’s Cogitive Excruciation

Complexity 2, Range sight, Target single wizard, Duration concentration, Save Discern

Effect: the mind of the targeted wizard is overwhelmed by the power of the spells it contains, causing a burning pain that paralyzes the target for the duration of the spell.

Grimrun’s Grandest Trick

Compexity 3, Range self, Target self, Duration instant, Save Discern

Effect: the caster weaves together a potent spell of death turned inside-out, such that anyone attempting to counter it unwittingly trigger it upon themselves, snuffing out their own lives in an instant. Absent an attempt to counter, it does 1d6 damage to the caster.

Healer’s Hands (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 1, Range touch, Target single person, Duration instant, Save none

Effect: heal a light wound or similar vicissitude with a touch, also restoring 1d6+1 hit points.

Variation: Loom of Bones (Complexity 2): heal a maim or broken bone, and restore 2d6+2 hit points.

Variation: Purity of Agni (Complexity 2, Save automatic): corruption is purged from a willing target, causing a wound of equal severity as it is burned out of their body.

Variation: Omnipotent Panchrest (Complexity 3): heal a severe wound, and restore 3d6+3 hit points.

Variation: Breath of Life (Complexity 5): breathe life back into a fallen friend within one day of death.

Hervor's Impregnable Iron Bulwark

Complexity 2, Range self, Target self, Duration one hour, Save none

Effect: a barrier of light surrounds the caster, blocking the passage of iron and steel weapons.

Variation: Hervor’s Umbral Ward (Complexity 1): the target cannot be touched or harmed by spirits.

Variation: Hervor’s Conquest of Flame: the target cannot be burned or harmed by heat or flame.

Variation: Hervor’s Warm Cloak: the target cannot be frozen or harmed by cold or frost.

Variation: Hervor’s Verdigris Escutcheon: the target cannot conduct electricity or be harmed by lightning.

Variation: Bright Invocation of Timæus (Complexity 3): undead are automatically turned from the target

Variation: Hervor’s Variation on Lacodel’s Rune (Complexity 4, Duration concentration): the target cannot be targeted by any other spell so long as the caster maintains concentration.

Lathgertha’s Ascendant Gaze

Complexity 2, Range bowshot, Target up to an army’s worth of arrows, Duration concentration, Save none

Effect: the caster may stop arrows in flight with but a glance, causing them to miss their targets and fall harmlessly to the ground.

Variation: Lathgertha’s Compelling Eye (Complexity 1, Target single person, Save presence): so long as the caster meets the gaze of a foe, they are held in place and may not look away or move at all.

Variation: Lathgertha’s Dousing Tear (Complexity 1, Target fire): the caster can put out a fire, up to a bonfire in size, with a look.

Variation: Lathgertha’s Iron Charm (Complexity 3, Target small group): the caster can twist iron and steel weapons with a glance, instantly ruining them.

Muniere’s Puissant Mantle of Stealth

Complexity 1, Range touch, Target single person, Duration one hour, Save none

Effect: the target becomes invisible, although they still make noise and may be spotted by their shadow.

Variation: Kilda’s Enviable Countenance: the target takes on a glamorous or innocuous appearance.

Variation: Kilda’s Terrible Mien (Complexity 2): the target takes on a ferocious appearance, causing foes to check morale.

Variation: Charm of the Thirty-Fold Veil (Complexity 3, Target small group): a small group becomes invisible or disguised.

Reversal: Lathgertha’s Note of Revelation (Target self): invisible creatures and objects become visible to the caster.

Noisome Curse of Eurus

Complexity 3, Range bowshot, Target area, Duration one turn, Save Endure

Effect: a great cloud of poisonous vapor is conjured, causing unconsciousness and eventual death in all that breathe them in. A strong wind with disperse the cloud in one round.

Reversal: Blessed Breath of Notus (Complexity 2): a cloud of light, sweet mist is gathered, purifying the air by carrying away any noxious or unpleasant taint, including poisonous vapors.

The Rune of Portals (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 1, Range touch, Target single door, Duration one day, Save none

Effect: the door or portal sealed by this rune cannot be opened by normal force, and by extraordinary might only 1-in-6 attempts.

Reversal: The Crafty Knock (Complexity 2): the targeted door springs open, even if locked, barred, held, chained, or sealed by the Rune of Portals.

Spell of the Deathly Urge (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 1, Range close, Target one corpse per rank, Duration concentration, Save none

Effect: the caster invokes the spirits of chaos to possess one or more corpses or skeletons, causing them to animate with terrible purpose to fulfill his or her desires.

Variation: The Rites of the Deathless: {create permanent undead}

Variation: Vierge’s Blasphemous Army: {conjure forth an army of corpses}

Song of Zephyrus (Ancient Spell)

Complexity 2, Range sight, Target area, Duration concentration, Save none

Effect: the winds are calmed and tamed, becoming a gentle breeze for the duration of the spell.

Reversal: Whisper of Boreas: a strong and terrible gale is called up for the duration of the spell.

Vierge’s Shadowy Assault

Complexity 2, Range close, Target self, Duration one turn, Save none

Effect: the caster calls out to his or her own shadow, pulling forth wispy figures in their own image, in number as the caster’s Rank + Wyrd bonus, that fight as ordinary 1 HD creatures at the caster’s command.

Variation: Vierge’s Chimerical Bodyguard (Complexity 3, Duration one day): the shadowing figures follow the caster loyally for one day.

{forlorn encystment}

{despatch}

Dweomercraft & Consecration

Scrolls and Books of Spells

The primary skill of a Journeyman Wizard is their knowledge of the Old Runes used to record magic spells. Such magics are very difficult to represent, and recording one is more akin to the art of an illuminated manuscript than simple writing. It takes one day and 60 pence worth of materials, such as expensive inks, quills, fine sand, and the like, to record a single spell, given an adequate exemplar of the spell to work from; anything less may cause the spell to contain dangerous errors. Further, the character must be well-rested and have a secure, quiet, and well-lit place to work. A single spell may be recorded on a scroll for trade or transport; while many such bound together make a spellbook.

Clerics are also trained scribes, able to record their sacred, but ultimately simpler, ceremonies and ritual prayers in a similar manner, although such books do not have to be consulted each time a ceremony is performed. Most such works are created with worshipful intent and inspired artwork at the same expense as a Wizard’s book of spells, but it is possible to create a more humble tomb for half the expense.

Amulets, Talismans, and Runestaves

Journeyman Wizards have mastered the Old Runes to an extent that they may use them to create minor, single-use written magical items. This come in three primary forms:

Crafting one written magical item requires one day per complexity of the spell and costs the spell’s complexity in marks of exotic materials, such as rare inks, quills, parchment, woods, and miscellaneous preparations to create a single amulet, runestave, or, talisman, and the character must prepare and cast the spell to be inscribed, the magic leaving their mind and becoming trapped in the runes.

Alchemy

Magister-rank Wizards have sufficient command of eldritch energies that they may bind them to material substances while drawing out the extraordinary qualities inherent in exotic materials, thus creating magical potions and elixers. Brewing a potion is a delicate process that requires a week of work, as the alchemical processes involved in extracting the essences of the ingredients take time to develop, but up to three doses of a potion may be prepared at one time. Most potions require 2M worth of exotic materials, including unusual plants and spices, purified water, alcohol, or other liquids, rare earths or stones, organs of strange animals, and plenty of quality charcoal to fuel the process. Further, the character must be well-rested and have a secure, quiet, and well-lit place to work that is further equipped with the necessary cauldrons, crockery, furnaces and glassware. Finally, the character must have a written formula for the particular potion they wish to create, which must be somehow secured or researched as a spell (see later section).

Sacramentals

Clerics that have received the order of Priest may consecrate minor ritual items, known as sacramentals, for ceremonial and practical uses, including holy water, chrism or sacred oils, and symbols of faith and protection such as ankhs, pentacles, and holy symbols.

The consecration of sacramentals such as holy water, offertory incense, sacred hearth fires, blessed salt, or chrism requires that the substance be ritually pure and of fine quality, and requires a day of preparation, prayer, and ceremony in a properly consecrated shrine or temple. The materials and offerings for such rituals cost 60 pence, but up to twelve measures of such an item may be consecrated at one time at the same expense.

Holy symbols are similar but slightly more difficult. Each must be constructed of appropriate pure and sacred material, and then blessed with holy water, fire, salt, and incense, and then finally anointed with chrism after a day of prayer in order to be used as a focus for the banishing of horrors and the proper performance of rituals.

Spell Research

The mark of a Master Wizard is the ability to not only employ the spells of others and of ancient tradition, but to create their own from first principles. Doing so takes considerable time: a minimum of one half-season of risky experimentation for each level of complexity. This requires a well stocked, expensive library of magical tomes and a workroom secured with powerful protective wards to prevent uncertainly shaped magic from wreaking havoc on the work of the master, and will require considerable expenses including the raw costs of fine parchment, paints and inks and precious materials required to seal and secure the necessary wards, amounting to 10M for each half-season of research. Existing spells should be used as guidelines for the potential power of player-developed spells.

Enchantment

Truly adept Magi have the power to bind the power of magic permanently into material forms, creating magical items. The process is difficult and fraught with risk, but the rewards are great. A Magus must have a carefully prepared formula for each such item, researched as if it were a new spell, although the same library and laboratory will suffice for the process of enchantment as well.

Items with charges, such as most divinatory tools, wands, staves, and some other wondrous items, require 5M worth of materials and a half-season of work per spell that the item is meant to emulate.

The process of enchanting arms and armor or miscellaneous items of a similar nature, such a rope that is magically strong and supple, requires one half-season and 10M of materials just to make them “magic”, having the power of affecting supernatural creatures and the extraordinary quality and durability such arms are known for.

Powerful objects with reusable or constant magical powers require a basic enchantment like that of magical arms, plus 20M and half-season of work per “feature” of the item, in addition to one or more very rare or unique components determined by the referee that must be secured through adventuring.

Hallowed Ground

The blessing of a sacred space such as a temple, shrine, or burial ground is an arduous process that requires similar effort to enchantment. The ceremonies required for an efficacious blessing take a half-season to reach completion and require various ritual materials costing 10M. This suffices for shrines and cemeteries, which have some power to protect their holy contents from the horrors of undeath and demonic influences, but most temples, and certainly the cathedral or basilica of a high priest, must be founded with an altar set above the resting place of a holy relic or sited on especially auspicious land already touched by divine power, and securing such a relic or holy site is usually only possible through adventuring.

Genesis

The creation and patterns of life itself are the purview of the Archmagi, and this accounts for much of the reputed oddness of their servants. Such creations, if they remain in the wizard’s service, count as part of their retinue. To create new forms of life from alchemical vats or eldritch breeding experiments, the Archmagus must first find or design a pattern that will determine its form, researched in the same manner as a new spell.

The process of actually creating life requires a year of careful work and 20M of alchemical reagents and other materials for each hit dice of the form to be created, plus one or more unique samples of existing life around which the new creation may grow, the nature of which is determined by the referee and must be secured by adventuring. Forms of life capable of successfully propagating themselves are much more difficult, requiring at least twice the expense and effort.