The material below is Open Game Content
The boundaries and limitations of magic in the OGL System are clearly defined. A wizard or cleric can cast X number of Y spells each day with effect Z. Metamagic feats can bend these rules, but the overall framework remains constant.
Sympathetic magic is a more flexible system. Instead of having a set list of spells to choose from, the user has a list of types of effects he can generate. Rather than being able to cast a 2nd-level flaming sphere spell twice a day and a 3rd-level fireball spell once per day, he can simply perform rituals that have to do with fire. The limiting factor is ritual points.
Ritual points represent the pool of energy that the mage can draw upon to perform his magics; once this supply is exhausted, the mage must refresh himself with a good night’s sleep before he can work more spells.
Sympathetic mages have the following game statistics.
Abilities: The rituals of a sympathetic mage require a keen understanding of the underlying principles of magic, a strong will, and common sense. As a result, both Intelligence and Wisdom are important to a sympathetic mage. The mage receives a bonus to her ritual points equal to the sum of her Intelligence and Wisdom modifiers, but the maximum bonus she can receive from either statistic is equal to her current level. So, a mage with an Intelligence of 14 (+2 modifier) and a Wisdom of 17 (+3 modifier) will receive +2 points at 1st level (+1 from each statistic), +4 points at 2nd level (+2 from each statistic), and +5 points at 3rd level (+2 from Intelligence, +3 from Wisdom). These bonuses are not cumulative, so when the character described reaches 3rd level she will have received a total of five bonus points, not eleven.
Hit Die: d4
The class skills of the sympathetic mage are Alchemy (Int), Concentration (Con), Craft (Wis), Heal (Wis), Herbalism* (Int or Wis), Profession (Wis), and Scrying (Int). A sympathetic mage may acquire Spellcraft as a cross-class skill, but few do; sympathetic mages approach magic from an intuitive level and few have any patience for academic studies of the mystical arts.
Skill Points at 1st Level: (2 + Int modifier) x 4
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 2 + Int modifier
All of the following are class features of the sympathetic mage.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Sympathetic mages are skilled with the club, dagger, light crossbow, and quarterstaff. Sympathetic mages are not proficient with any sort of armor or shield. Sympathetic magic is considered to be arcane magic, and restrictive armor will interfere with the subtle movements that are an integral part of any sympathetic ritual.
Spells and Ritual Points: Instead of receiving spell slots, sympathetic mages receive ritual points that they may expend to perform acts of magic. The process of performing a sympathetic ritual is described in greater detail in the following pages. A mage may expend up to 1 + (the character’s sympathetic mage class level) ritual points on a single spell. Expended ritual points will be completely restored after seven hours of peaceful sleep, unless the mage wishes to continue to maintain the spells that she has cast.
Paths: A sympathetic mage cannot perform an infinite variety of rituals. Each mage follows certain paths of knowledge and can cast rituals that relate in some way to these paths. At 1st level a mage may take two paths; as she grows in experience she can learn additional paths, broadening the scope of her powers. Below are a variety of possible paths that a sympathetic mage could follow. The game master must approve any requested path to ensure that it does not provide too much power, but it is up to the mage to decide what paths she would like to study. A few ideas are suggested below, along with examples of the rituals that would fit within the path. Animals: This path is used with rituals dealing with natural creatures. It can summon or control natural beasts, or grant a person the characteristics of an animal, for example. Any creature type could potentially be a separate path.
Earth: This path is used for rituals that directly affected the earth — mimicking the effects of stone to mud or stone shape, for instance — but it can also be used in more abstract ways. An earth mage might be able to affect the outcome of a harvest, for example.
Emotion: This represents knowledge of the secret paths of the mind and heart. This path is critical for those wishing to create mind-affecting effects.
Fire: Knowledge of this path allows a mage to perform rituals that will protect a person or location from flame, or call down fire upon her enemies.
Fortune: A student of Fortune knows how to influence the luck of an individual, for better or worse. This path allows the mage to perform probability-altering rituals, such as common curses or blessings. Mimicking the spell bless would be a simple Fortune ritual.
Health: The path of Health also includes knowledge of disease; a student of this path can heal injuries or inflict them. Knowledge: Rituals of scrying or identification fall under this path.
Spirits: Similar to the path of Animals, this path allows the mage to interact with incorporeal undead. It can be used in order to speak with the dead, to protect an area from the undead, or to seek favors of spiritual beings.
Transformation: Any sort of physical transformation, from alter self to polymorph, would fall under this path.
This list is just a starting point. Most clerical domains or schools of wizardry could be used as paths of sympathetic magic. Other paths could include Air, Birds, Love, Night, Storms, Water, or anything else that a player can think of
and the GM will approve. A path with a tighter focus — Birds as opposed to Animals, or Love as opposed to Emotion — can allow the caster to perform more powerful rituals.
Knowledge of overlapping paths also allows the user to perform more effective rituals; a mage possessing the paths of Transformation and Animals will gain a bonus if he wants to turn an enemy into a dog, as both his paths apply to the spell. This is covered in more detail later in this chapter.
Metamagic Feat Restriction: Metamagic feats have no application for sympathetic magic. Many metamagic feats simply provide a traditional wizard with some of the flexibility that is inherently part of sympathetic magic. Other feats, like Maximize Spell, cannot be used because sympathetic magic cannot be controlled as tightly as other forms or arcane magic. Still Spell and Silent Spell cannot be used because the ritual element of sympathetic magic cannot do without somatic and verbal elements; the naming of the target is a vital part of the ritual, not an annoying limitation that can be ignored by one who possesses the proper talent.
Sympathetic mages are also limited in their use of Item Creation feats. Mages can create long-term effects through their magic, but it is not so easy to create an object allowing someone else to duplicate the effects of a ritual; the act of the ritual is what creates the magic, and the effect cannot be stored for later use. The one exception to this rule is Brew Potion; many sympathetic mages are wise in the ways of herbalism, and learn how to combine this knowledge with their mystical skills to bottle the essence of magic. A final feat that should be mentioned is Spell Focus. A sympathetic mage may take this feat. Each time she does, she should select one of her paths to apply to the feat. Add +2 to the DC of saving throws for any ritual that uses that path.
|Level||BAB||FS||RS||WS||Special||Points per Day|
|1||+0||+0||+0||+2||Select Two Paths||4|
|4||+2||+1||+1||+4||Select Additional Path||16|
|7||+3||+2||+2||+5||Select Additional Path||32|
|10||+5||+3||+3||+7||Select Additional Path||50|
|13||+6/+1||+4||+4||+8||Select Additional Path||74|
|16||+8/+3||+5||+5||+10||Select Additional Path||98|
|19||+9/+4||+6||+6||+11||Select Additional Path||128|
Performing Sympathetic Magic
To generate an effect, a sympathetic mage must first declare the effect. The GM then determines, in secret, how many ritual points it will take. Next, the mage must justify the use of one of her paths, establish sympathies with her target and effect, and determine the range and the ritual to be used. The player then decides how many ritual points she’ll spend on the ritual, and adds in any bonuses or penalties for particularly strong or weak sympathies as set by the GM.
Finally, the GM decides if the ritual works based on whether the total ritual points expended exceed the base cost he
determined earlier, and allows the target a saving throw if applicable.
The first step in the process is to declare the target and effect. The caster must state precisely what her ritual is supposed to accomplish. Examples include: “I want to win the heart of Officer Hendring,” or “I want to set the Black Eagle inn on fire.” The effect must have a distinct target and a clearly stated goal.
The GM then privately sets a base ritual point cost for the effect before determining the bonuses and penalties that will influence that cost. Some ways to determine the base ritual point cost of an effect are discussed below.
Many of the things that a sympathetic mage will wish to accomplish with her magic will duplicate existing spells. The mage wishes to treat the farmer’s fever? It’s cure disease. She wishes to curse someone with bad luck? Bestow curse. Determine whether the effect already exists within the game system. If it does, the base cost to produce the effect should be 2 ritual points for each spell level, or 1 point for 0-level spells. A few common effects and their base costs:
|augury||4 points||Minor fortune telling|
|bestow curse||6 points||Curse a victim with bad luck|
|blind/deafen||4 points||Another basic curse|
|change self||2 points||Assume the form of another; sympathies required with the person whose shape is being taken|
|charm person||2 points||Win the heart of the victim|
|contagion||6 points||Yet another good old-fashioned curse|
|cure wounds||See below||Cure spells are slightly more expensive, see notes below|
|finger of death||14 points||When you care enough to do the very worst|
|polymorph||8 points||More powerful transformation; self or other again, sympathies are required with both the victim and the new shape|
|scrying||8 points||Traditional crystal ball magic — sympathies required with the subject being scryed upon|
|wish||18 points||The ultimate catch-all|
In addition to the cost in ritual points, the GM should assign an XP cost if the effect that is being duplicated normally has one. For example, a 17th-level sympathetic mage can duplicate the effect of wish, generating almost any effect she can think of — but she will have to pay the 5,000+ XP cost, just like a wizard would.
Finding the Effect
Of course, this system is simply a quick way to resolve common effects. Perhaps there is no spell that easily duplicates the effect in question. Or perhaps letting the mage duplicate a particular spell seems to make her too powerful. Here are a few guidelines for specific types of effects mages may try.
Many effects — a curse upon an enemy or a blessing to a friend — can be resolved using ability modification. Provided she can come up with a suitable justification, a mage can adjust an ability score by 1d4+1 by expending two ritual points. For every additional two ritual points invested in the spell, the amount of the modification is increased by 1. No more than twelve ritual points can be spent on a modification effect, and an ability cannot be reduced below 1 in this manner. Use this system instead of duplicating existing spells, like bull’s strength or ray of enfeeblement.
AREA EFFECT SPELLS
As a general rule, sympathetic magic only affects a single target — the caster needs to establish a direct connection with the target, and cannot do this with a group. As a result, while the caster can duplicate effects like bless, the spell will only affect a single target.
An exception to this is spells that are targeted at an area, and are intended to affect the area itself. For example, a ritual designed to set fire to an inn will have the side effect of burning people in the inn — but it is the inn that the caster is targeting with the spell. Using a location as a target incurs normal ritual point costs.
CURES AND HEALING
Sympathetic magic can be used to cure injury or disease, but it shouldn’t be easy — the mage is not intended to replace a cleric. Challenge the spellcaster to come up with a ritual that truly reflects the healing. The caster could, for example, mold a figure of the victim from clay, mark it with wounds reflecting existing injuries, and then smooth the wounds out, but this would be far more time consuming than a simple clerical cure wounds spell. Neutralizing poison or curing diseases can be even more challenging.
In general, a sympathetic mage with the path of Health can duplicate clerical healing spells at a cost of 3 ritual points per level of the spell (2 points for 0- level spells), provided an appropriate ritual can be devised. The maximum amount of points that a mage can devote to a spell is equal to 1 plus her level, so without special sympathies or a clever ritual she will not be able to duplicate any healing spell of 7th level or higher.
Often, a ritual for inflicting damage upon an enemy won’t match up to an existing spell. When the caster decides to have her victim be torn apart by invisible dogs, well, what do you call that? As a basic rule, spells designed to inflict damage on a single person can inflict between 1d4 to 1d8 points of damage for every ritual point invested; base this damage on the creativity of the ritual and the strength of the sympathies involved. The maximum amount of damage that can be inflicted in this manner is 12d8. While this can be an impressive and dangerous form of attack — especially since the mage can strike from a great distance — bear in mind that offensive rituals will generally take a fair amount of preparation and time, and often require the caster to destroy the object that is providing the sympathies in order to reflect the damage she wishes to inflict.
Inflicting damage over an area is more difficult, as the caster must establish a connection to the area itself. It is also less powerful, inflicting between 1d4 to 1d6 points of damage per ritual point invested, to a maximum of 10d6. If the spell is intended to cover a particularly large area, the GM should require more ritual points to accomplish the same amount of damage.
Generally speaking, protection spells can be defined by existing effects. A spell designed to shield someone against fire can be resist elements or protection from elements, depending how many points have been invested. A ward against weapons would be mage armor. However, it should be possible to exceed the effects of these traditional spells if the caster has especially strong sympathies to the source of damage. For example, if the caster wants to create a spell that protects her from one specific sword and she has a tie to the weapon — say, its scabbard, or wire from its hilt — she would get no overall bonus against normal attacks; but the spell might provide her +1 AC per ritual point versus attacks made with that weapon. With a particularly clever ritual, the spell might also absorb damage inflicted by the weapon, providing one point of Damage Reduction for each ritual point invested in the spell.
Sometimes a caster will want to do something that is not so easily defined — say, ensure that a farm will have a good harvest in the upcoming spring, or grant someone a night of pleasant dreams. At these times, it is up to you to decide if you want to allow the effect, and if so how many ritual points it should require. If the spell has a permanent effect — like the harvest example — it may also require a minor expenditure of experience; think of it as a weaker wish spell, and proceed accordingly.
Setting Your Path
Once the base cost has been determined privately by the GM, the sympathetic mage must then be able to explain how the effect falls within her spellcasting paths. A mage with the paths of Fire and Animals can use her knowledge of fire to set the inn ablaze, but she’s going to have a more trouble with the love spell — although she could try to convince the GM that she is kindling a blaze in the heart of her victim. If the caster cannot make any sort of justification that satisfies the GM, the ritual fails. If the justification is particularly weak, the GM can apply a penalty to the ritual’s effect, reducing the effective ritual points in the spell by –1 to –4. A standard connection between the mage’s paths and the effect gets no penalty or bonus.
If the caster has a path with a particularly tight focus — for example, she chose the path of Love instead of the broader path of Emotion — she might receive a bonus of +1 to +2 points to the power of the spell.
Finally, if she has multiple paths that apply to the effect — for example, she is trying to heal an injured cow, and she has both the path of Animals and of Health — she will receive a 1-point bonus for each overlapping path.
It may also be that the desired affect is simply beyond the abilities of the caster. For example, a 1st-level mage cannot cast a spell to bring someone back from the dead, regardless of her paths. If the mage is over-reaching her abilities, the GM should tell her right away and stop the ritual before she spends any points.
Having stated the purpose of the spell, the caster must establish sympathies with her target. Unlike traditional SRD System magic, a sympathetic mage can’t simply point her finger and say “I want to affect that guy over there”; instead, she must have some way to establish a mystical connection to her target.
CONNECTIONS TO THE TARGET
If the sympathetic mage has no connection to the target, the ritual automatically fails. A weak connection, such as an object that has been in contact with the target, can be used with a –1 to –2 penalty; this could include things like a bit of the person’s clothing or a personal possession. A body part, like a lock of hair, a fingernail, a tooth, or a bone, is an average connection that gains the mage no bonuses or penalties.
A weak or average sympathy can be improved to a strong sympathy if it is incorporated into a physical representation of the intended victim. Dolls and masks are commonly used for this purpose. For example, a piece of cloth from the target’s cloak may be sufficient to perform a ritual. But a scale model of the target, wearing tiny clothes sewn together from scraps of the target’s old clothing, and with a lock of the target’s hair glued to the doll’s head, would generate a much stronger connection and increase the power of the effect by +1.
A mystical representation of the target, such as a pangunculus (see page 27), a nativity horoscope (see page 29), or a spiritstone (see page 147) may be used. A pangunculus is an ideal focus for a sympathetic ritual, as it is designed to be a mystical facsimile of the target; instead of redirecting hostile spells to the pangunculus, the mage reverses the link to reach the target. This form of connection can be very powerful, gaining a +2 bonus, but it requires a great deal of effort and considerable skill on the part of the mage.
SPELL EFFECT CONNECTION
In addition to connecting with the target of the spell, the caster needs to create sympathies with the effect of the spell or the spell will fail. For example, if a mage wishes to turn her victim into a frog, she will need to establish some sort of connection with her target, but she will also need to establish a sympathy with frogs. A frog bone, a tadpole, a piece of dried frog skin — any of these will suffice as an average connection gaining no bonuses or penalties.
In the case of inanimate forces — like fire — match might be a weak connection earning a –1 to –2 penalty, while a candle flame or pile of ash could be used as an average representation the force; the caster doesn’t have to actually find a sample of the specific flame she wishes to be protected from. Of course, if she somehow does get a sample of the specific force, this will enhance the effect of the spell by +1 to +2 points.
Sympathetic magic has the disadvantage of being slow and requiring the caster to have a mystical connection to the target. But because the mage is making use of that connection in order to cast the spell in the first place, actual physical distance is only a minor inconvenience. However, affecting a victim over a great distance does take a little power out of a spell, as shown below.
|Distance Ritual||Point Penalty|
|Up to one mile||None|
|One to five miles||–1 point|
|Five to ten miles||–2 points|
|Ten to twenty miles||–3 points|
|Twenty to fifty miles||–4 points|
|Fifty to one hundred miles||–5 points|
|Greater than one hundred miles||–6 points|
Determining the Ritual
The next step is to decide the kind of ritual to be performed. At this point, the mage needs to describe the exact nature of the ritual to the GM, and explain why this ritual should have the desired effect. If the ritual requires unusual equipment, she needs to have all of the items at hand. Creativity should be encouraged. If the GM doesn’t like the ritual he should try to work with the mage, challenging the points he thinks are ineffective and giving her a chance to come up with alternatives before shutting down the process. At the same time, the GM shouldn’t hand the mage the key to success; he needs to make sure that the mage is working to overcome the challenge at hand.
For example, the caster wishes to cure a farmer of a fever. Well, how is she representing “fever” in her ritual? Even for healing a minor injury on friend, the GM should challenge her to find a way to physically represent the restoration of health. Also, the GM should determine the amount of time that the casting will take based on the kind of ritual that the player devises; most sympathetic rituals take too long to be performed in combat, but a ritual that is completed before an anticipated armed conflict could be triggered to give an AC bonus when the mage is struck by a particular sword. The mage is far more versatile than the traditional wizard or cleric, and the cost needs to come out in time and creativity.
A ritual that has no logical ties to the effect will fail, while one that is poorly thought out will incur a –1 to –4 ritual point penalty. An average ritual gains no bonuses or penalties, but an exceptional one can earn from +1 to +4 bonus points.
The most important step of sympathetic magic is to expend ritual points in the actual casting of the spell. The caster must state how many points she is putting into the spell from her pool of ritual points; the most that she can expend on a single spell is equal to 1 + her sympathetic mage class level. In addition to the points that the character expends from her pool, the GM may grant bonus or penalty points based on the relevance of her paths, the strength of her sympathies, the range of the effect, and the type of ritual performed.
These modifiers can allow the mage to exceed her normal limitations, but can also make the ritual fail; if negative modifiers reduce the mage’s invested ritual points below the minimum amount required to produce the effect, as decided secretly by the GM in the first step, the ritual doesn’t work.
For example, Vaia is performing a ritual that will protect her from a guardsman’s sword. She has a specially prepared doll to represent herself (a strong sympathy) and the tassel from the sword in question (another strong sympathy). She possesses the path of Protection and the path of Swords. For the ritual, she uses the tassel to tie a steel plate to the doll, intending that the sword will encounter a force like steel when it tries to strike her. She invests 6 ritual points in the effect. The GM evaluates this and determines that she has a strong sympathy to the target (+1), strong sympathy with the effect (+1), one overlapping ritual as both Swords and Protection apply (+1), and that the effect falls into a tightly focused path, namely, Swords (+2). He decides that the ritual is functional; not clever enough to merit a reward, but not so dull as to deserve a penalty. The net power of the ritual effect is 11 points … enough for a +11 bonus to her AC against that sword! If Vaia wanted the spell to protect her from any sword, the sympathy with the effect would be weaker; if she wanted it to protect her against any weapon, she would lose the tie to the path of Swords.
At the end of this discussion, the GM must make the final decision: will this ritual work? How long will it take? Are the caster’s actions a suitable representation of her desired effect? Has she established clear sympathies? The GM should evaluate the previous stages of the spell and make a final decision on whether the ritual points expended meet or exceed the base ritual cost he privately determined earlier.
If the decision is that the ritual does not work, the GM must stand firm; he should give suggestions as to how it could be improved if the caster wishes to try again, but he must not allow players to wheedle him into shifting his position. If a ritual does fail, the ritual points that have been invested in it are lost.
It is possible that a mage who is confident in the bonuses she will receive will choose to spend fewer points on the ritual than may be required to produce the desired effect. In the case of charm person, the caster might choose to only spend 1 ritual point, believing that she will get enough bonuses due to her paths to provide the extra point required to meet the base cost. However, regardless of how many bonus points a character will receive, she must spend at least 1 ritual point in order for a spell to have any effect at all.
If a mage invests more points than is required for an effect, the GM can choose to increase it’s power at his discretion; he may add another die of damage, or increase the ability modifier it gives, for example. However, it is possible that an effect might have no clear way for the GM increase its power, even if the character receives bonuses to the power of the ritual. For example, the mage is duplicating the effect of charm person. This ritual only requires 2 points to be effective.
But because of paths and the strength of the connection, it ends up with 6 points. Charm person is an all or nothing effect, so what do the extra 4 points do? Well, even if they don’t alter the main effect of the spell, they will still increase the DC of the target’s saving throw.
RITUAL POINT MODIFIERS
|Relation of Ritual to Paths||Ritual Power Modifier|
|No connection to caster’s paths||Ritual fails|
|Weak link to caster’s paths||–1 to –4|
|Average link to paths||None|
|Effect falls directly into a tightly focused path||+1 to +2|
|Each overlapping path possessed by the caster||+1|
|Effect is beyond the mage’s capabilities||Ritual fails|
|Strength of Sympathies with Target||Ritual Power Modifier|
|No connection to target||Ritual fails|
|Weak connection to target||–1 to –2|
|Average connection to target||None|
|Strong connection to target||+1|
|Mystical connection to target||+2|
|Strength of Sympathies with Effect||Ritual Power Modifier|
|No connection to effect||Ritual fails|
|Weak (a match to represent fire)||–1 to –2|
|Average (a lit candle to represent fire)||None|
|Strong (ashes from the fire you are shield against)||+1 to +2|
|Range to Target||Ritual Power Modifier|
|Distance is greater than one mile||–1 to –6|
|Nature of Ritual||Ritual Power Modifier|
|Ritual has no logical ties to the intended effect||Ritual fails|
|Ritual is poorly thought out, but still plausible||–1 to –4|
|Ritual is functional, but not exceptional||None|
|Ritual is clever or well thought out||+1 to +4|
The GM will also have to decide what saving throw is most appropriate for a particular sympathetic ritual, and whether a successful save completely negates the spell or merely reduces its effectiveness. If the effect duplicates an existing spell, use that spell as a guideline; for example, a ritual that generates a blast of fire will probably allow a Reflex save for half damage, just like fireball or flamestrike. Otherwise, most sympathetic effects will use Will saving throws, representing the mental struggle as the caster attempts to enforce her desires upon the victim.
The basic DC for a sympathetic spell is 10 + the caster’s Wisdom modifier. This is further modified based upon the number of ritual points that the mage invests in the effect and by the strength of the sympathies that have been established with the target, as shown on the table opposite.
The range of modifiers is intended to allow a little flexibility on the part of the GM. For example, clothing belonging to the target is generally considered to be a weak connection and would result in a –2 penalty to the DC. However, if the clothing in question was a shirt the target had worn every day for the last three years, that might only be a –1 modifier.
So, if a mage with a +2 Wisdom modifier spends 8 points on a ritual (+4) and has a lock of the target’s hair (average sympathy, no modifier), the DC for the save would be 16.
|Strength of Sympathies with Target||Modifier to Saving Throw DC|
|Every 2 ritual points invested||+1|
|Weak connection to target||–1 to –2|
|Average connection to target||None|
|Strong connection to target||+1 to +2|
|Mystical connection to target||+2 to +4|
Another benefit of sympathetic magic is its extended duration. Instead of lasting for a short period of time, sympathetic spells can last for days or months; this is one of the things that makes sympathetic curses so fearsome. The following rules apply to long-term sympathetic spells:
- The caster can maintain the spell as long as she wishes, but she will not regain the ritual points she has invested in the spell until she releases it, regardless of how much rest she gets.
- The spell is linked to the physical object used to establish sympathies during the ritual. If this object is destroyed, the effect will fade after 1 round per ritual point invested in the spell.
- remove curse or dispel magic can be cast on the victim of a sympathetic ritual to cancel the effect. Any sort of negative sympathetic effect is considered to be a curse for these purposes. In either case, the dispelling spellcaster rolls 1d20 and adds 1 for each caster level he possesses; the DC is equal to 10 + the number of ritual points invested in the spell.
- If a victim passes through an area such as antimagic field, it will temporarily suppress a sympathetic effect, but not destroy it.
These rules only apply to effects that would normally have a duration — a protection spell, blindness, or the like. Healing effects, direct damage spells, and other things that would normally be resolved instantly do not have any duration; the caster does not have to maintain a healing effect once it has been cast.
Here are a few examples of sympathetic magic, to help get you started.
Effect: Set a building ablaze, injuring anyone within.
Cost: 4 ritual points for the basic effect, plus 1 point per 1d6 damage to be inflicted during the first round, to a maximum of 10d6. If the building is especially large — a palace, for example — you may increase the basic cost of the ritual.
Sympathies: The caster must carve a model of the target building out of a piece of the building — a chunk of the wall or a piece of furniture from an inn, for example; this is a +1 strong connection.
Ritual: Set the model ablaze. The first round, the interior of the building will be filled with flame, and all within will take damage. The building will continue to burn until the flame is extinguished or the model is destroyed (which will depend on the size of the model), but provided that people evacuate quickly they will not suffer additional damage.
Saving Throw: Victims within the building may make a Reflex save to reduce the damage by half. The DC for the save is 13 + the mage’s Wisdom modifier + 1 for every 2 ritual points invested in the effect beyond the required 4.
RITUAL: EARS OF THE MESSENGER
Effect: The caster enchants the severed ears of an animal. Once the ritual is performed, anything said into one ear can be heard through the other, and vice versa. If the ears are moved beyond the maximum range of the enchantment — one mile, unless the mage invests additional points at the time of casting — the enchantment is broken.
Cost: 6 ritual points for the basic effect; the caster can increase this when casting the spell to give the effect a greater range (7 points for one to five miles, 8 points for six to ten, etc.).
Sympathies: This spell requires two ears from an animal, typically a pig or a sheep; this is an average connection.
Ritual: The caster slaughters an animal and severs its ears. The ears are marked with symbols for communication. The caster calls upon the spirit of the slaughtered animal to carry her words from one ear to the next.
Saving Throw: None.
RITUAL: FERAL SPY
Effect: The user goes into a trance, transferring her consciousness into a rat or similar creature. She is capable of controlling the actions of the beast and perceives the world through its eyes and ears. This allows her to use the creature as a spy — a more subtle form of scrying, although the creature must be able to gain access to the area the caster wishes to observe. The ritual involves creating a simulacrum of the rat. The mage can use this simulacrum to re-establish contact with the creature at a later time — so if it sneaks onto a ship, the mage does not have to get onto the ship to reestablish contact with the creature.
Cost: 9 ritual points base; if the caster is reestablishing contact with a creature that is far away, she must also pay the cost of the range modifier.
Sympathies: The ritual requires three elements: a rat or similar creature to serve as a vessel for the consciousness of the caster; a representation of the creature; and a representation of the caster’s eyes and ears.
Ritual: The mage must bind the representation of herself to the simulacrum of the creature that will bear her thoughts, while speaking to the creature and requesting its services.
Saving Throw: None
RITUAL: SOFT HEART
Effect: Duplicates the effects of charm person.
Cost: 2 ritual points
Sympathies: Carve a heart from wax. Wrap the heart in materials belonging to the intended victim; this is a –2 weak connection.
Ritual: Heat the heart slightly while speaking the victim’s
name. Bind the heart with an object representing
the beneficiary of the spell; unlike charm person, this ritual
can be used to make the victim fall for someone other than the caster.
Saving Throw: 9 + Wisdom modifier + 1 for every additional 2 ritual points invested in the effect. This is a Will save, and if it is successful it will negate the effect.
Notes: The wax heart could also be used as a focus for mimicking emotion (friendship) or other similar spells, or for a ritual giving the caster a Charisma score bonus when dealing with the target.
RITUAL: SPYING MIRROR
Effect: Spy on a victim from afar — mimicking the effect of the spell scrying.
Cost: 8 ritual points
Sympathies: The spell requires a representation of the target, generally either a doll or a mask. The strength of the sympathies will also affect the Scry check. It also requires a mirror or other highly reflective surface.
Ritual: Position the mirror to reflect the representation of the target. Chant an invocation requesting the mirror to reflect the target himself.
Saving Throw: None
Notes: This is a fairly bland ritual; if the caster can come up with something more imaginative, she should receive a bonus to her Scry check. Variations of this ritual could be used to mimic augury or divination; the caster asks the mirror to show some sign of the future of the target, and the answer is reflected through a visual image.