Are there any other ways to separate the casting of a spell with it's effect other than to include a Time 4 Sphere?

Example 1: An alchemist spikes a drink with a deadly poison (Life 3 / Prime 2 plus one quintessence for aggravated damage). If the victim drinks it a minute later will it affect them? What if it was an hour later? Does this need time magic to define the event that fires the spell or is there another way?

Example 2: A Mage scribes a rune on an alleyway wall, anyone seeing it becomes confused (Mind 3). Does this need time magic to define the event that fires the spell or is there another way? Would it affect as many people as there were successes in the original roll?

I'm asking because it seems quite unbalance to me that to have any sort of trigger you need to invest all the way into Time 4 when you may not want any of the lesser Time Sphere Effects.


Time 4 is used when you want a timed trigger on a spell effect. Specifically,

Trigger Effect: Allows the mage to generate a keyed pause: Something that doesn't happen until a specific person, creature, or item comes into the right position.

Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition, Pg 523

(Emphases mine)

Notice how it says a specific person, creature, or item. So in your second example, if you only wanted the rune to affect a specific person walking by and not all people, you could use Time 4 to do that.

Otherwise, the effect you're creating takes effect when you finish casting it based on how you describe what you want it to do and what powers it uses.

For example, if you're creating a poison using the well known rote Persephone's Nectar (Correspondence 3, Life 3, Matter 2), it turns an ordinary liquid into a poison and only affects the given target when they imbibe the poison.

If you wanted to have an effect triggered by some event you would need not to use Time 4 (Trigger Effect) but simply state the effect as being "when someone looks upon this rune, they become confused to the point of insanity." Whether it's Vulgar or not is up to your Storyteller (more than likely it is, though if they're confused to the point of insanity it may not count, depending on your worldview).

Here's an example of a "triggered" effect that doesn't use the Trigger Effect power of Time 4:

Receptacle for lesser forces (Forces 2 Prime 2)
The mage consecrates a container (like a flask, a box, or a statue) to be able to contain forces, fills it with force, and then seals it. When the seal is broken (or the spell fades) the forces will be set free...

Note that the "trigger" is simply breaking the seal on the container, and this rote does not use Time 4.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.