In the change between Burning Wheel Revised and Burning Wheel Gold, casting spells no longer uses Sorcery + Will, and instead just uses Sorcery. Spellweaver was stripped out, which presents a problem when it comes to utilizing the Magic Burner properly.

By and large, the Magic Burner, a companion to BW Revised is compatible with BW Gold - however, as a result of the changed obstacles for sorcerous castings, Abstraction and Distillation is no longer compatible. The example they give from the Magic Burner is as follows:

I want to create a spell that sends a blast of leaves and dirt into my enemy's face, distracting him.

My leaf distracting spell would be Earth, Tax, Presence Origin, Instantaneous Duration, Single Target. ... It's an Ob 5 spell, and takes 12 actions.

(I've omitted the derivation because the book's text is not public.)

In Burning Wheel Revised, this would have been moderately difficult. Someone may have +4 Sorcery and +4 Will, giving them +8 for Ob 5. Not easy, but possible to accomplish - their average roll would be a 4.8.

However, in Burning Wheel Gold, they would just be rolling their +4 Sorcery for an Ob 5 casting, which borders on impossible, even when executed Patiently and Carefully - their average roll is a 2.4.

I'd like to include Abstraction and Distillation in my BWG games. However, it's very obvious that it's not directly compatible. I have no clue how to balance it, however.

Is there a way to do this without introducing serious imbalance issues?


1 Answer 1


Use the abstraction and the distillation as is. It is difficult and scary, but that is how it is supposed to be.

Another change to sorcery: You can use FoRKs as usual. Earth magic-wise to blast someone with earth, Anatomy when using a healing spell, and so on. This allows you to gather a fair number of dice when you know what you are doing.

See also the thread Using Abstraction and Distillation with BWG on the Burning Wheel forums. Thor suggests some items that can also help with abstractions, but there is no sign of play testing over there.

Burning Wheel Codex does not include rules for abstraction and distillation.


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