Five-dot Summon Elemental power in the Elemental Mastery Thaumaturgical Path lets a vampire summon an elemental (p. 215 of V20 Corebook):

a salamander (fire), a sylph (air), a gnome (earth), or an undine (water). Some thaumaturges claim to have contacted elemental spirits of glass, electricity, blood, and even atomic energy, but such reports remain unconfirmed […]

But then it leaves the details of the summoned elementals up to the Storyteller:

The elemental has three dots in all Physical and Mental Attributes. One dot may be added to one of the elemental’s Physical Attributes for each success gained by the caster on the initial roll. The Storyteller should determine the elemental’s Abilities, attacks, and damage, and any special powers it has related to its element.

Are there any books that give official powers and details for these elementals? I haven't read any books specifically dedicated to Thaumaturgy yet.


1 Answer 1


(The stats that I decided to use are at the end of the answer, right after the reasoning)

After consulting my friend who is a veteran WoD player, who suggested to look for the answer in Werewolves book, I actually found it.

Level 5 power of Elemental Mastery allows a vampire to summon a spirit and, with enough effort, control it, most likely also forcing it to materialize.

So, let’s learn about how do they work. V20 Corebook of Werewolf: the Apocalypse describes spirits in general on pages 365-368, and elementals in particular on page 370. A brief introduction into how spirits work will be needed now.

Instead of Traits that most characters have, like Strength or Intelligence, they only use Willpower and 3 unique Traits: Rage, Gnosis and Essence. Spirits use (and roll) Willpower if a normal creature would roll Dexterity or Stamina, for example, to soak damage (they can soak any type, even aggravated), to dodge (they have to split dicepools if they dodge and attack in the same turn), to check if the strike hits. Rage is used for Strength rolls, and Gnosis substitutes all Mental and Social Traits. Essence is like spirit’s health and mana: they spend it when using special powers (“Charms”) and lose when failing to soak damage. Spirits don’t naturally die when Essence drops to zero, but just fade into the Umbra. Essence is normally the sum of Willpower, Rage and Gnosis.

The “The elemental has three dots in all Physical and Mental Attributes.” sentence can be possibly understood as spirits having Willpower, Rage and Gnosis of 3 and, hence, Essence of 9.

Let us list elementals covered by the book with their appropriate stats and Charms. Quoting the book, “Elementals vary wildly in power, from the minor Gafflings in a candle-flame to the Incarna-like power of the water in an ocean. The following Traits apply to minor elementals:” So, even those Traits are considered weak by WtA.

Earth Elemental

Willpower 9, Rage 4, Gnosis 5, Essence 20

Charms: Armor, Materialize, Umbraquake

Armor: By spending two points of Essence, the spirit gains a soak pool equal to its Gnosis for the remainder of the scene.

With this power, an elemental with WtA stats has 14 soak dice (9 without it), soaking 5,6/3,6 levels of damage on average, and with VtM stats he will have 6/3 respectively, averagely soaking 2,4/1,2 levels of damage.

Materialize: The spirit takes physical form on Earth. The spirit’s Gnosis must be equal to or greater than the area’s Gauntlet rating. The spirit appears the same in the material world as it does in the Umbra. The spirit uses its Traits in the same way as it would in the Umbra, rather than having Attributes and Abilities. Materialized spirits do possess health levels like other corporeal beings. If a spirit dies in the material world, it returns to the Umbra and enters Slumber, just as if the spirit had lost all of its Essence in the Umbra. Most spirits won’t use this Charm except in extraordinary circumstances; the modern world is far from welcoming to their kind.

I would assume that the thaumaturge may force an elemental to materialize. Also this power is assumed to be availabale for all spirits, and for some particularly strong it gives more health levels than creatures traditionally do. Do not that it makes Essence unimportant as health, only as mana.

Umbraquake: The Umbra shakes with such force that everyone standing is thrown to the ground. Everyone in the area suffers half the spirit’s Rage in dice of bashing damage.

Unclear if the elemental has to roll to hit with this (most likely not, as it's an AoE power). WtA and VtM elementals would both roll 2 dice.

Air Elemental

Willpower 3, Rage 8, Gnosis 7, Essence 18

Charms: Create Wind, Updraft

Create Wind: The spirit can create or quell winds. The Storyteller rolls the spirit’s Gnosis (difficulty 3 for a strong breeze, 6 for a storm, or 9 for a tornado).

WtA elemental rolls 7 dice with a chance to succees of 99%, 90%, and 55% respectively, VtM elemetals roll 3 dice for 92%, 74% and 39%.

Fire Elemental

Willpower 5, Rage 10, Gnosis 5, Essence 20

Charms: Blast (Flame), Create Fires

Create Fires: The spirit can create fires. The Storyteller rolls the spirit’s Gnosis (difficulty 3 for a torchsized flame, 6 for a bonfire, or 9 for an inferno). Without a source of fuel, the fire only burns for one turn.

VtM elemetals roll 3 dice for 92%, 74% and 39% chances to succeed. WtA elemental rolls 5 dice for 97%, 84% and 49%. It is worth noting that, opposing Lure Of Flames, a once summoned elemental can't lose permanent Willpower due to botches and can attemp every turn.

Blast: The spirit can attack from a distance — breathing fire, unleashing ear-splitting sound, hurling shards of glass, or spitting razor-blades. The Storyteller spends a point of Essence and rolls the spirit’s Rage as a damage dice pool, dealing aggravated damage. The spirit does not need to roll to hit, and the attack cannot be dodged.

A minor fire elemental rolls 10 dice of aggravated damage in WtA! In VtM it's just 3 dice, even weaker than Lure Of Flames.

Water Elemental

Willpower 6, Rage 4, Gnosis 10, Essence 20

Charms: Cleanse the Blight, Flood, Healing

Cleanse the Blight: The spirit can purge spiritual corruption in its vicinity. The Storyteller rolls the spirit’s Gnosis; the difficulty depends on the strength of the Blight. Most spirits can only use this Charm in an area that reflects their nature.

As this elemental has Gnosis of 10, he can always get a free marginal success if not in combat, then he has the following chances for at least 1 success against given difficulty: 3-4/99%, 5/98%, 6/95%, 7/89%, 8/79%. 9/62%, 10/35%. For VtM elemental with dicepool of 3 chances are 3/92%, 4/87%, 5/81%, 6/74%, 7/65%, 8/54%, 9/40% and 10/22%.

Flood: The spirit can raise the natural water level in an area. The spirit spends a point of Essence to flood an area. The size depends on the power of the spirit — a Jaggling using this Charm could flood several blocks or a small town, while a Gaffling could flood a building or a city block. Flooding a larger area could require the spirit to expend more Essence.

Healing: The spirit can heal physical beings. The Storyteller rolls the spirit’s Gnosis (6 to heal lethal damage, 8 for aggravated). The target heals a number of health levels equal to the spirit’s Gnosis. A spirit can only use this Charm once per scene per target.

On average, WtA elemental would heal 4 levels of lethal damage and 2 levels of aggravated. A VtM elemental would heal 1,2/0,6 levels respectively.

The other two elementals, Glass and Electricity, may not be available for most thaumaturges, but let's still list them.

Glass Elemental

Willpower 4, Rage 7, Gnosis 7, Essence 18

Charms: Blast (Glass shards), Materialize, Shatter Glass

Blast fires a shard worth 7 dice of aggravated damage.

Shatter Glass: The spirit can break all of the glass in the area. The Storyteller rolls the spirit’s Gnosis (difficulty 6).

90% to succeed for WtA elemental, 74% for VtM elemental.

Electricity Elemental

Willpower 6, Rage 7, Gnosis 5, Essence 18

Charms: Blast (Lightning), Control Electrical Systems, Short Out

Blast deals 7 dice of damage.

Control Electrical Systems: The spirit exerts control over an electronic device. The Storyteller rolls the spirit’s Gnosis (difficulty 3–9 depending on the system’s complexity). The spirit can shut the system down, control it as though it were standing at the controls, and even overload the system.

Short Out: The spirit can short out electrical systems, damaging the circuits. The Storyteller rolls the spirit’s Gnosis (difficulty 6).

Spirits can also move at extremely quick rates, flying 20+Willpower meters per turn.

So, we now have a clear knowledge of what "any special powers it has related to its element" an elemental could have. What goes to the raw power of an elemental (his stats) is not that easy. Some powers of WtA elementals, such as Fire Elemental's Blast, are definitely overpowered, while using plain VtM stats makes them useless. Some, like Water Elemental's heal, are powerful, but limited.

The problem is that WtA clearly operates greater numbers than VtM. I am not familiar with WtA, but Strength and Agility of 4 and Stamina of 3 of typical Brujah neonate, probably enhanced by 1-2 dots of Potence/Celerity, are clearly weaker than the same stats enhanced by +4/+1/+3 of a Garou in Crinos, given that werewolves also deal aggravated damage with their attacks by default, and can use Rage for extra actions, a lot of them. There are many more other powers that I didn't know of yet, but that's already enough for the purposes of an example. So, pretty surely, we shouldn't give WtA-level powers to VtM characters, at least to those controlled by players.

On the other hand, there are (or there have to be!) reasons that make Thaumaturgy a heavily guarded secret of Tremere, and Elemental Mastery is a not so common path. Mastering it to level 5 would require primary path to be of level 5 already, which is a lot of XP already, plus very high Occult and Manipulation required to control an elemental, otherwise it is hard to benefit from that path, and high Willpower (like at least 8 or probably 9-10) to reliably roll the power. This level of vampire strength is somewhat of how a powerful Tremere ancilla could look like. A character who has gone that far probably deserves a powerful tool in his hands.

Let's compare this path to level 5 Obtenebration. It doesn't require primary path to be learned beforehand, and involves no risk of losing permanent Willpower. Each success on the same Manipulation + Occult roll would summon another tentacle with Strength and Dexterity of 5 (plus some bonus dots from very possible Celerity or Potence (which is an in-clan Discipline for Lasombra)). Manipulation 4 and Occult 5, which would be very reasonable for a Tremere or Lasombra ancilla, would summon 2,7 tentacles on average. Surely, tentacles can only hit and grapple, but that's already good. I assume that Elemental Mastery should summon something of at least similar power.

Pages 378-379 of V20 Corebook show a conversion of WtA stats into VtM. I will try to make a similar chart for elemental spirits; if someone finds a more apporproate way to do it, you are more than welcome. I am going to use a form of "Cheat sheet" as described on page 349 of V20 WtA Corebook.

Earth Elemental

A tank with some crowd-control.

Melee attack damage: 4 (bashing)

Attack type: Elemental punches his opponents with hands made of stone. Damage is lethal if it hits the head. He is considered to be using a weapon for the means of blocking/parrying.

Melee rolling to hit or parry: 6

Initiative (in dice): 7

Soak: 6 (+4 if using Armor), bashing damage is ignored, lethal damage is halved, aggravated can be soaked.

Essence: 20

Special abilities:

  • Umbraquake: Elemental spends 1 point of Essence and knocks ground with his supernatural power, inflicting 2 dice of bashing damage to everyone within 20 meters from his feet and knocking them down, whether they are in material plane or in Umbra (such as if in the case of level 5 Auspex power).
  • Armor: Elemental spends 2 points of Essence. For once scene he gets additional soak dice.

Air Elemental

A moving and sentient piece of wind.

Melee attack damage: N/A (is immaterial)

Attack type: N/A, but can use offensive special abilities.

Melee rolling to hit: N/A

Initiative (in dice): 3

Soak: 3 (but can only be harmed by supernatural means except for those like Movement of the Mind, which damage through not so supernatural ways)

Essence: 18

Special abilities:

  • Equivalent of Movement of the Mind 8 (not considered to be a use of magic). Uses 1 point of Essence per throw.

    • Using 1 point of Essence, can create winds, rolling 7 dice against difficulty of 3 for a strong breeze, 6 for a storm, 9 for a tornado.
  • Air Elemental cannot be seen unless observerd with Auspex, only heared or felt.

    • As the elemental is immaterial, it is impossible to grapple or somehow constrict it, but neither can he do it or block movement. The elemental can pass through very small holes.

Fire Elemental

Damage dealer with ability to cause Rötschreck.

Attack damage: N/A

Attack type: N/A

Melee rolling to hit: N/A

Initiative (in dice): 5

Soak: 3 (though it may be hard to find a way to harm a living fire!).

Essence: 20

Special abilities:

  • Causes Rötschreck. Difficulty to resist is 6 for observing an elemental, 7 if being attacked by him at a distance, 8 if being trapped inside him. A thaumaturge automatically resists it if he controls the elemental.

  • Equivalent of Lure Of Flames level 5, rolling 7 dice. If elemental is created using green abyssal fire, such as fire summoned by The Fires of the Inferno, elemental will also be made of such a fire and instead have level 5 Fires of the Inferno path (same soak difficulty, but inflicting up to 5 levels of aggravated damage per turn). 1 point of Essence per use.

  • Can move to a target and trap it inside him, inflicting damage as if the target was fully covered by fire (3 levels of damage per turn, soak difficulty 6). His target may attempt to dodge, a resisted roll will be issued in that case. Elemental rolls 5 dice, and his target rolls Dexterity + Athletics. Each success that elemental scores above his target inflicts one level of damage.

  • If elemental is standing in fire, it is healed by it instead of being damaged. Fire summoned by himself does count. Instead of being healed, an elemental can regenerate a point of essence.

  • Those who try to attack elemental in close combat suffer one level of fire damage (soak difficulty 6).

  • If touching flammabale objects, the elemental may ignite them.

Water Elemental

A healer/support unit.

Melee attack damage: 3 (bashing)

Attack type: A humanlike transparent whater physically hits you right in the face. Gotcha!

Melee rolling to hit: 6

Initiative (in dice): 6

Soak: 7, ignores bashing and lethal.

Essence: 20

Special abilities:

  • Can spend a point of Essence to raise the natural water level of a place where he stands, possible breaking through stone and asphalt. No roll required. An elemental can flood a whole building or a city block. A spirit can flood a larger area by spending more Essence.

  • Once per scene per target may heal 10 dice of damage, difficulty is 6 per lethal damage and 8 per aggravated.

  • Can move to a target and trap it inside him, making it to choke if it needs to breath, inflicting damage as it was standing in fire if it is a Fire Elemental (though Water elemental will get the same damage), and constricting it. His target may attempt to dodge, a resisted roll will be issued in that case. Elemental rolls 5 dice, and his target rolls Dexterity + Athletics. If elemental scores more successes, the target is captured, otherwise it escapes.

  • If elemental is standing in water, it is healed by it as other creatures get damaged when they stand in fire (3 health levels per turn if it is fully flooded by water, for example). Water summoned by himself does count. Instead of being healed, an elemental can regenerate a point of essence per would-be-healed health level.

  • While being in a flooded area (possibly by the elemental himself), it is possible to purge spiritual corruption. Elemental rolls 10 dice, but the difficulty depends on corruption Strength.

Glass Elemental

Melee damage dealer.

Melee attack damage: 7 (aggravated)

Attack type: Elemental strikes with his spiky arm made of glass.

Melee rolling to hit: 4

Initiative (in dice): 4

Soak: 4

Essence: 18

Special abilities:

  • May launch a shard of glass, inflicting 6 dice of aggravated damage. It costs 1 point of Essence.
  • If hit with Brawl in close-quarter combat, an attacker suffers the same damage as he rolled, but at least one, as aggravated.
  • May shatter all the glass within a large area, rolling 7 dice against a difficulty of 6. For armoured glass, I would raise the difficulty to 8, and two or three successes would probably allow to destroy glass silently, and four (or, probably, five) would not trigger security systems that normally react to destroying glass. It is probably also possible to destroy target glass.

Electricity elemental

Attack damage: 7 (electricity: lethal, but aggravated if soak roll is botched)

Attack type: Zap-zap! An elemental hits you by a lightning.

Melee rolling to hit: No roll required!

Initiative (in dice): 6

Soak: 6

Essence: 18

Special abilities: - Rolling 5 dice, an elemental may control target electrical system or device in his line of sight as if he was standing behind the controls, difficulty is based on the device's complexity and is determined by the Storyteller. It is possible to shut a device down, overload circuits. - Rolling the same 5 dice, a spirit can overload target circuits. It is important, though, that some systems may have built-in protection against overloads, in which case they may soak this damage. Amount of soak dice depends on the protection power.

All elementals may soak aggravated damage. Their Social and Mental abilities range from 5 to 7. They may move with a speed of 20 + Initiative meters per turn.

I am sure that there is a lot to fix and edit right now, but I will look at the answer again in the next couple of days for the sake of fresh perspective.


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