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While reading this excellent answer about spirit initiative, I realized directing my summoned spirit in combat will leave me without Complex Actions to cast spells in the usual way.

I realize this is great for game balance, but how can I use the remaining Simple Actions?

  • Reckless Spellcasting is literally bad for your health
  • Firing a weapon is possible, but mostly not very effective, most Magicians can't afford the necessary skill points

I have read through the Simple Actions section from page 164 in the Core book, but most of them seem like a bad idea.

Did I miss something?

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You only have to give it a single order in combat

Commanding a spirit to fight will not consume a Simple Action every turn, but a single Simple Action once, when you use one of your services to ask/demand your spirit to battle.

You will only use another action when you require your spirit to do something else, like use a specific power on someone else unrelated to your enemies (such as concealing yourself mid-combat).

Regardless, if you are thinking on ways to use your second Simple Action on the first initiative pass after already telling your spirit to fight, you have a few options:

  • Move into cover, if you haven't already (and why? You want to get yourself killed?);
  • Activate a focus. It's a bad idea to have them activated 24/7, and if they aren't active yet, now is a good time;
  • Shift perception, so you can take a look at the astral and see possible invisible threats;
  • Draw and/or fire a weapon, this may seem like a bad idea, but remember that every single attack helps in combat, and for each attack that an enemy had to evade, they get a cumulative penalty on their reaction check until their next action;
  • Cast a Reckless (using a simple action and taking +3 DV of drain) spell that has a low drain value (DV). There are many spells with F-3 or even F-5 DV, so adjusting that to 4 DV and still being able to pull that spell off in a hurry is not necessarily a bad idea, lower the spell's Force if you have to, but act!
  • Call another spirit. While you may only have a single unbound spirit active at once, nothing prevents you from calling another bound spirit and commanding her to fight too;
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  • \$\begingroup\$ So if I commanded my spirit to fight for me, can I change its targets without spending services or simple actions? \$\endgroup\$ – András Aug 1 '18 at 14:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ Technically, the GM controls spirits. He may delegate that control to the player, but spirits are NPCs and not under your direct control. So, depending on your order, and how intelligent the spirit is, it may not go 100% how you wanted. \$\endgroup\$ – ShadowKras Aug 1 '18 at 14:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ @András Combat is just a single service which requires a single Simple Action. You can telepatically communicate with your spirit (should be a Free Action) and tell it to attack a different opponent, but whether the spirit actually does that is up to the GM. (If the wording is correct, (s)he should be more likely to rule to your advantage) \$\endgroup\$ – fabian Aug 1 '18 at 14:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ If I call a Spirit with the Noxious Breath optional power, it might not even use it, as I do not controll it directly? \$\endgroup\$ – András Aug 1 '18 at 15:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ @András that is 100% up to your GM. If the spirit is commanded to fight, and it decides NOT to use an offensive power, that is it's decision. Though purposely hindering your services is never recommended, but may happen on certain traditions (specially when dealing with insects and djinn) or if the spirit doesn`t exactly understand the order given. \$\endgroup\$ – ShadowKras Aug 1 '18 at 15:50

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