Questions about the nature of magic in a game. Use [spells] for questions on specific spells.

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6
votes
1answer
129 views

Can a Magic User cast 'Illusion Disguise' on someone even though they don't agree with it

I am currently reading 'Gurps 4th Magic' and the spell 'Illusion Disguise' just says that you have to create a basic illusion and then use 'Illusion Disguise' to superimpose it. However it never ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

Can the Create Water spell create “running water”?

In our current Pathfinder campaign, my party is (probably) dealing with a Vampire; one of the vampire weaknesses is to take damage in "running water". We have multiple Clerics and a Druid in the ...
33
votes
9answers
6k views

What should a GM do about players using magic in unforeseen game-breaking ways?

Firstly, a quick anecdote. In our most recent Pathfinder session our cleric jokingly mentioned he will soon be able to summon 1d3 dolphins. Another player then mentioned that some dolphins (orca) can ...
23
votes
8answers
1k views

Making magic “magical”

When I work with settings that contain magic, whether traditional fantasy or others, I always perceive something of a tension when trying to portray the magic between the following factors: Magic ...
5
votes
2answers
370 views

What's a good source for a fantasy common-magic setting?

I'm looking to create a new culture in my current campaign that lives in what I'll call a common-magic area (for whatever reason, in my case a McGuffin, there's heaps of magic), and I want to reflect ...
1
vote
1answer
123 views

Can alchemy be performed with magical items in a no-mana world?

I am currently reading through all the rules used for the Alchemy skill. It says (I quote from GURPS Magic, p. 210): It is a mechanical process, using the mana inherent in certain things. [...] ...
4
votes
1answer
379 views

Deeper darkness and dancing lights interaction

Hello I am relatively new to Pathfinder and I ran into an interaction that I don't quite know how it will resolve as a Drow with Darkvision. As a Drow with the feats, Drow Nobility and Improved Drow ...
17
votes
1answer
555 views

History of the Wish Spell

A friend of mine was wondering about the history of the wish spell in Dungeons and Dragons. It is his suspicion that the spell “only” exists because they needed something for genies to cast to work in ...
10
votes
1answer
414 views

Recommendations for game mechanics that emphasize reagent or component based spellcasting

I'm researching spell component systems for a 3.5e campaign. In 3.5e, spell components are an inconvenience at best and a waste of time at worst. I'd like to homebrew a solution drawing from mechanics ...
12
votes
2answers
555 views

How does the duration “concentration” work when using scrolls and power stones?

I'm playing a Pathfinder game as a Psion, and am considering making some power stones (effectively scrolls) of Control Light. Control Light, unlike Darkness, is a "Concentration" duration power. Does ...
21
votes
16answers
2k views

Why aren't magocracies and theocracies dominant in D&D settings?

Anyone has (or has links to) well thought-out, logical explanations for why magocracies and theocracies are not the dominant forms of government of D&D worlds? I'd also be really interested in ...
1
vote
2answers
148 views

How can I take on a 'hybrid' form?

I want to make a character that can transform into a half-human, half-beast form at will (in the sense that he's in control of when he does it). Limitations in terms of uses per day are ok, but ...
4
votes
1answer
966 views

Disbelief, Interaction & Shadow Conjuration / Shades

What counts as interaction for the purposes of determining who gets a will save to disbelieve a shadow conjuration? Suppose I use shadow conjuration to summon a wolf, for instance. Does an enemy get ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

What happens when Detect Magic is used upon something that is magically invisible?

Does a simple casting of Detect Magic reveal the presence of magical invisibility?
3
votes
2answers
319 views

Gestalt character with the same invocation from two classes

I have recently decided to run Rappan Athuk - Dungeon of Graves again, and due to the difficulty of the dungeon, I have decided to allow Gestalt Characters. One player applied with a ...
12
votes
6answers
2k views

How do I implement freeform magic on a system? [closed]

i'd like to ask you if any of you has ever played an rpg where players we're entitled to make their own spells, and how it turned to be. Also, i'd like some answer to a problem concerning this topic ...
6
votes
1answer
277 views

How to counteract an Anti-Gravity Spell

In our game I am playing as Wizard of the White Council. One of our encounters included some Jade Court Vampires. I Conjured up a spell that left the big, baddest guy of the encounter up off the ...
4
votes
1answer
203 views

Ways to learn whether a magic user knows a certain spell

Is there a spell, feat, special ability, etc. in DnD3.x – or possibly Pathfinder – that would allow a character to learn whether a magic user knows a certain spell? Or is there a certain ...
15
votes
2answers
1k views

What would happen if you use Disjunction on a golem?

What would happen if a character were to cast a Mage's/Mordenkainen's Disjunction on an iron golem? Would it stop functioning because Disjunction has removed its magic? Or would its spell immunity ...
7
votes
2answers
514 views

Is glass transparent to Astral Perception?

In a Shadowrun 4e game I play in, an adept with the Astral Perception power wanted to sit in a bar and astrally spy on something behind the window. SR4A p.191 states : Non-magical and non-living ...
8
votes
1answer
226 views

What purpose does keeping Vancian Spell-casting in Legend serve?

I've got to admit, I'm somewhat confused by the option to keep Vancian-style spell slots for the Shaman and Tactician casting tracks. Most tracks in Legend either provide abilities that are at-will or ...
5
votes
2answers
677 views

Can positive or negative energy be dissipated into surrounding plant life?

This came up specifically in a discussion of the Tome of Battle Shadow Sun Ninja prestige class. One of his first abilities is Touch of the Shadow Sun, which deals Negative Energy damage, then Touch ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

How does the Magic Staff (from the Handbook) work?

The Magic Staff in the Weapons and Equipment chapter of the 4e handbook sounds like something I'd want as a Lv. 6 Wizard, but I'm unclear as to how exactly it's bonuses are applied and what to. Here's ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

What alternatives are there for replacing the D&D memorize and forget magic rules

I'm starting a campaign and will be the DM. We are basing our system off the D&D 3rd ed. Most of us (players and myself) don't really like the rules surrounding Wizards / Sorcerers when they have ...
3
votes
2answers
143 views

How can I balance magic in a setting that imposes penalties on its use?

I am starting an adventure in a custom setting that may end up as a campaign, depending on popularity. However, part of what makes the setting unique is that magic is illegal and severely punished by ...
6
votes
1answer
279 views

Is there any obstacle to using a Mage Hand in water?

How does water affect Mage Hand? I know there are rules regarding disorientation with ray spells, and use of fire under water. But if a person wanted to, for example, grab some keys from a well, would ...
4
votes
3answers
796 views

What can I do with Spirit Magic?

I have a player who wants to take Spirit evocation, as an idea, but neither of us are sure practically on what sort of spells it would let him evoke. What does Spirit Magic let my player's character ...
6
votes
4answers
223 views

What systems contain Multiple Caster or Combined Casting rules? [closed]

In the process of creating a homebrew system, I have run into the problem of my players wanting to be able to combine their spellcasting prowess in a show of superiority and might ( and perhaps a bit ...
14
votes
11answers
998 views

How can non-magical healers be useful when magic healing is available?

In many roleplaying games the prerequisite to perform magic healing is knowledge, and during action it is mostly limited by magic capacity and sometimes time. Meanwhile the prerequisite to perform ...
11
votes
3answers
861 views

I want to build a castle, with magic!

Rather, one of my players, a Terram Magus, wants to be able to construct a castle or equivalent fortification without using creo magic in an Ars Magica 5th edition game. The rules for crafting with ...
7
votes
3answers
880 views

How useful would a house ruled immediate Counterspell ability in Pathfinder be?

I have been GMing for 10 years, and we are currently are using Pathfinder with little to no house rules. The only character that has ever used counterspell is when we made a prestige class up that ...
0
votes
1answer
181 views

Pathfinder Wall of Ice Anchoring Rules

Is it allowable to cast a "Wall of Ice" spell in its hemispherical configuration in mid-air, or upside-down? The description of the spell is very explicit about it being anchored when it's in the flat ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Rulesets to make magic more unpredictable and dangerous?

I am considering starting a Pathfinder game, however before I do this I would like to brew-up some house-rules on the use of magic for a "low-magic" setting (think Conan or A Song of Ice and Fire) ...
4
votes
4answers
493 views

“High on Magic” - how original is it? [closed]

I have written a RPG called "Chuť magie" - it's in Czech and it means literary "Taste of Magic", but I'd definitely call it "High on Magic" in English. I'm not planning to translate it to English ...
15
votes
4answers
3k views

How the heck does magical darkness work in Pathfinder?

I'm having a lot of trouble trying to divine the intent of the darkness spell in PF. It starts off easily enough: This spell causes an object to radiate darkness out to a 20-foot radius. This ...
9
votes
6answers
517 views

Is there any system which lets me play an astrologer mage?

Is there any system which has a mage class/magic system dedicated to astrology so I could play a court astrologer using the planets and constellations to divine the future? I would like to mention ...
7
votes
1answer
247 views

Thaumaturgy power gathering

So if I have this right, when one of my characters is using a thaumaturgical ritual, lets say creating wards, then the ward strength and length are determined by how many shifts of power, in total, ...
8
votes
2answers
383 views

Magic college default skill in GURPS

Is there a way in GURPS to create a mage with a default level of skill in a specific magical college? I'm imagining something like an earth wizard who can attempt any earth college spell at a -3 ...
8
votes
2answers
322 views

Does temporal stasis freeze spell effects?

My question boils down to what qualifies as a condition in the spell temporal stasis, as emphasized below. You place the subject into a state of suspended animation. For the creature, time ceases ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

What is thaumaturgy?

I keep getting conflicting reports on what exactly thaumaturgy is. Some sources say it's a form of divine spellcasting. Others say it's a form of summoning. Others still say it's a method of ...
6
votes
5answers
562 views

What are some mage-related abilities in a Sci-Fi setting?

One of my PC's wants to be a mage type character. I would be all for this, except that we are playing the Fallout Pen and Paper game, which doesn't really have any magic related techniques or attacks. ...
6
votes
4answers
741 views

What can be done to maintain balance in a magic system in which mages must construct their own spells?

I'd like to build a magic system in which every spell is a one-off. A spell is created to serve a particular purpose and is cast once. I'm thinking that the time and place of the casting would be ...
14
votes
3answers
906 views

Do magical beasts have a magical aura with regard to Detect Magic spell?

The description for Detect Magic doesn't explicitly cover this. Some monsters, like the Ankheg, are categorized as magical beast, but don't have any magical or spell-like abilities. If they are ...
3
votes
3answers
587 views

Can a custom spell's effect last after the caster's death?

As GM, I am having a now-deceased 30th-level wizard's spell last after his death. It is a spell to conceal an object in a Dimensional Pocket keyed to one of the right bloodline who knows the password. ...
5
votes
2answers
317 views

Alignment restrictions and Trap the Soul

Saw it mentioned in a thread (How do you make a vampire cleric stay dead?) and now I'm curious... Does binding a creature's soul into a gem in itself constitute an evil act? Trap the soul says ...
7
votes
4answers
331 views

Systems that have rules for covert magic (Occult type magic)

What games system out there have a good ruleset for a covert magic system. For the lack of a better word I use covert in meaning that magic isn't obvious. Not that the magicians would have to hide, ...
2
votes
1answer
216 views

Catching Spirits

Is there a way in Pathfinder to catch a spirit or bind it with your PC? (hopefully for the benefit of the PC) I am hoping it is possible to possess a scroll or magical charm or something as my ...
18
votes
7answers
697 views

Fantasy and magic in a primarily realistic setting

I'm running a game that's best described as "medieval fantasy," in the sense that we're actually trying to have the lives of people in the setting strongly resemble the historical Middle Ages. There ...
9
votes
3answers
662 views

What does it mean to “master” a path of magic?

In Anima: Beyond Fantasy, magic is divided up into paths, some of which are opposed to each other. The rules quite clearly state that it costs twice as much to advance along a path opposed to one ...
4
votes
2answers
443 views

Castle Falkenstein: Is there a faster Magic system?

I love running games in the Castle Falkenstein diceless system. However, I find the CF magic system to be a little slow (to set up, run and play) for a high-fantasy campaign. Can anyone suggest ...