The use of arcane (Elementalism, Life magic, Spell Casting) skills is required whenever a person with the appropriate school casts a spell. This roll is modified as follows:
- If a person rolls an appropriate knowledge skill prior to the casting, they get +1 on success, and + 1 per raise. However, if a 1 is rolled on the skill die, they are at -1 and no other bonus can be used. If both skill and wild dice are 1’s, additionally the casting of the spell will cause a backlash automatically, even if successful.
- e.g. A life mage attempt to perform greater healing on a friend. He desperately needs to be successful, so he spends several hours in ritual and study. Rolling his Life Knowledge skill, he gets a success and a raise. Therefore, when casting the actual spell, he gets +2 to his dice. If the skill dice is 1 even though the wild die is a success and a raise, he is casting the spell at -1. If both dice are 1, not only will he cast at -1, but he will take a backlash roll automatically.
- Components can be used to cast spells. These must be purchased for each specific spell. The use of a component will reflect the spell, and allow a +1 on the casting roll. It will take one action to prepare the component. The component is destroyed or rendered worthless by the casting. (Note: an appropriate knowledge roll can gather and prepare these components. generally it takes about 10 – 12 hours of gathering/creating to find 1 component, and an additional hour to prepare it. Each raise on this will add one component. Also most towns will have at least one practitioner who sells components, but they may only sell one type! Usually, they charge around 10 – 20 dollars for a component.)
- e.g. An elementalist is casting a burst spell with fire trappings (fireball). He uses a small ball of prepared pitch as a component. He spends one action shaping and lighting in, and another to cast the spell. The pitch is burned completely.
- Spells can be embedded into scrolls. These scrolls hold the spell, with words and gestures that trigger it. If the scroll is damaged, the spell is destroyed. Anyone can use a scroll, if they can read the language it is written in. The “scroll” can be just about any medium that can have writing on it. Embedding a spell into a scroll drains the scriber of the spell the required points for a number of weeks equal to the square of the number of points. The effect of the spell is determined when created, but is usually rolled secretly by the ref. A caster will never suffer backlash when creating a scroll.
- e.g. A Spell caster wishes to scribe a scroll of armor with light trappings (armor of light) for her liege. She chooses simple vellum, and invests 4 points into the spell. She will be without those for points for 16 weeks. The Ref rolls the casting die, but the baron will not know if it is successful until he tries to use it.
The use of Tech skills (Mechanics, Power, Synthesis) are used to create a tech device, or to use a tech device that is not covered by another skill. In most cases, a tech skill roll is needed prior to the use of the other skill. e.g. A person who has a Lightning Rifle must roll a Power roll to charge and orient the rifle, and then a shooting roll to fire it and hit something. As a general rule use Sciences of Arkan. If the item has multiple charges, the roll is only required after each “Recharge”
When attempting to repair a tech item, anyone may roll on the repair. Those that have studied the appropriate school will roll normally. If they have a technical background, but not the appropriate school, they suffer -2 to the roll. If they do not have a technical background, they will suffer an additional -2. If the item has more than one discipline involved, the maintainer/repairer must have both (or all three) backgrounds or suffer the -2.
When technology is in the presence of magic, or magic is in the presence of technology they are adversely affected. Every item is rated at a magic or tech level. For every level there is a 2 inch radius “field” that affects the opposition. Within this “field” any roll is taken at – the level. A tech 6 grav carrier causes -6 to any magic cast within 12 inches. These fields do not overlap. A roll inside of several fields is only affected by the highest penalty. A person who has a background has their own field. For every dice they have they create a 2" field. A mage with a D8 in life magic and a D4 in spell casting creates a n 8" -4 field. However, if a person has tech and magic skills, they balance them selves out. A D8 in Elementalism, and a D6 in Synergy creates a 2" -1 magic field, but he will suffer this -1 whenever he tries to use his synergy.
When a roll occurs in one of these “fields” any roll below 4 is a fail. Any roll below 1 causes a failure of the item.
**If it is a spell, not only do they use the power points, but they will suffer a shaken and lose an extra power point. If the skill die is a one this will be 2 shaken, and will cause a wound. If both the skill and wild die are 1 then they take a wound, a fatigue level and lose twice the power points of the spell.
- If it is a technology, the tech will require repair before it can be used again. If the skill die is a 1, it will require a complete rebuild prior to use again. If both the skill and the wild die are 1, then it will fail catastrophically, usually causing damage to the user, or even those around them. If the item is used up in it’s use, such as most synergistic endeavors, this roll will cause all of the remaining of the batch to be useless. In any catastrophic fail, the whole plan needs to be reworked. this will only cost 1 pool point, but will take the whole amount of time.
McGuyver and MacFlynn:
- The Mcguyver skill is a tech jury rig skill. It allows someone with any technical skill to roll a repair with no penalty. However, the effect of the repair is temporary. It will last only a few uses (shots, or hours, or whatever) before it breaks again. Also,it increases the failure roll to 2. Also, it allows the player to create items for one or two uses. The player must have the appropriate tech background, and resources must be available. These devices are very hard (-4 to the roll) and may be further modified by GM Fiat, or by availability of resources. When using this skill, appropriate knowledge skils may be used as complimentary.
- The MacFlynn skill is the magical equivalent skill to McGuyver. It uses spells is ways a spell is not normally designed. For instance, a person with the bolt power with ice trappings may use the spell to freeze a bucket of water. These variants are always very hard (-4) and use one extra power point. They are also subject to GM Fiat and normally take several rounds of preparation (usually equal to 1 round for every power point to be cast). Named after a Human Female who only had cantrips, but from each school. She was quite the object of study just over 100 years ago.