[Runequest] Multispell (RQ 3)
dave at difference.com.au
Fri Feb 12 22:04:20 EST 2010
At 6:02 PM +0800 12/2/10, Gary Sturgess wrote:
>On 12 February 2010 17:46, David Cake <dave at difference.com.au> wrote:
>>> A student level sorcerer in Sandy's system might have 30-40% in a
>>> couple of spells like Boost Damage or Boost Armour, and a 30-40%
>>> Ceremony skill. That gives him potentially Boost Damage 8 and Boost
>>> Armour 8 pretty much all the time. And I get the impression - perhaps
>>> wrongly - that such a character is supposed to be roughly the
>>> equivalent of perhaps a skilled Initiate or Apprentice Shaman. This is
>>> without any funky saint stuff, mind you.
>> Yeah, its problematic.
>> Though actually, in Sandys system having both those spells up at once
>> would still require a Presence of at least 16, which would be more or less
>> unachievably high for a student, and still quite high for an apprentice.
>Erm, no, that's trivial. Free Int of 16 would give you that with the
>Vessel, and that's without the high vow (which will quite possibly be
>16 on its own).
Well, its not exactly trivial, as to have two spells known
and still have a Free Int of 16 implies Int 18, but yeah, its
Its certainly true that a student can have a pretty
significant Presence pretty easily, certainly in the mid-20s.
> Students are better than apprentices - apprentice is
>the lowest rank, student is higher. (At least in the version that I
my mistake - its the exact other way around in the standard
rules, so this would seem to be one of those differences introduced
primarily to confuse people.
>> I don't necessarily think that is an issue - the other magic
>> specialists get their own various advantages. For example shamans can quite
>> quickly build up an enormous effective MP total vs offensive magic when at
>> rest (as they add their fetch MPs to their own).
>Yes, but that doesn't do much against a Boost Damage spell. And
>sorcerers can simply have Resist Magic to block a lot of the shaman's
And the sorcerers have usually pretty poor defenses against
spirit combat, and the shaman can attack discorporately (which
completely negates the value of a Boost Damage spell), and so on.
Each has pros and cons - in general, sorcerers are much more able to
set up useful magical attacks and defences in advance, but often much
less capable if they need to whip something up in a hurry.
> > And divine magic is generally effectively instant cast while
>sorcery spells are very slow (which Hold obviously helps overcome
>somewhat if you are using Sandys system).
>Sorcery spells are "better than instant". They're precast. A divine
>magician still has to cast his spells in round 1; a sorcerer has his
>from last week.
Well, for a start, only true if you are using Sandys system
or some other varient - in straight RQ3, there is no Hold, so while
sorcerers can have pre-prepared defences, they can't have
pre-prepared attacks really.
But in any case, having pre-cast your spells is great if you
chose the right one - and disastrous if you didn't, or it is taken
down, or whatever. No use stacking venom and then getting a Madness
spirit dropped on your head, or whatever. All magicians suffer from
this problem to some extent, but the sorcerers suffer from it FAR
worse - not only do they need to plan in advance to avoid very long
cast times, they also generally have a far smaller arsenal of
reliably castable spells.
>> Swings and roundabouts where the various types of magic have very different
>> advantages and disadvantages are, in my opinion, a feature not a bug.
>YMMV. That hasn't been my experience.
Well, the alternative is you'd like the different magic
systems to be closer to being very similar in play, with no one
system having major unique advantages. Doesn't sound very interesting
> > This is why I, at the time, much preferred the (closely
>> of Paul Reillys ideas, in which Presence was replaced by the very similar
> > Vessel, which rather than being a number that started out moderately high
>> and then was gradually pushed up with Vows and various learned achievements,
>> was in rules a lot like a shamans fetch without INT. So the Vessel would
>> start with just a handful of points (the POW donated to it at creation) and
>> gradually creep up as the sorcerer donated his POW gain rolls to it, just as
>> a shamans fetch does. So in this system you can't maintain permanent spells
>> without a significant investment of POW - to maintain 16 points of spells
>> permanently is possible, but requires as much investment as a 16 point Fetch
>> or 16 point of Rune spells, which seems ok to me (though a bit of a rip off
>> for the shaman, really).
>That does sound like a far better idea, at least. I'll look into it.
I thought it was a much better idea at the time, but it does
seem to have largely succumbed to link rot (not surprising, this
particular debate about sorcery was a big issue in Glorantha fandom
in the mid-90s).
>> I don't think sorcerers having some access to long
>> duration/effectively permanent spells available is intrinsically broken, any
>> more than having Enchantments in the system is.
>If enchantments could mimic spells,
They can straight up cast spells, how is that not mimicking them?
> then I would say that enchantments
>were exactly as broken as sorcery is.
So, not a fan of the general concept of magic items as
present in pretty much every RPG game system ever then?
>They cannot, however - an
>enchantment can give you more magic points, a new caster (via magic
>spirit, or conditions, or whatever), more spells (directly or via INT
>spirits), and so on. They can't give you the equivalent of a permanent
They can cast you a Bladesharp 5 on command easily enough, or
just straight up give you more APs etc. I don't see why a pre-cast
spell is SO much better than a spell on command as to be
intrinsically hugely unbalancing.
>Unless it's a Boost Damage matrix, of course, and wielded by a
>sorcerer with enough Presence... ;)
Sure, but a sorcerer can't DI. A priest or shaman can learn
new spells in a short time (subject to POW for divine magic), but a
sorcerer can only get the same new spell at a time beginning cast
percentage. Swings and roundabouts - of course the sorcerer can do
cool stuff the others can't, but he also has advantages the other
In practice, sorcerers are generally stuck with a tiny number
of solid reliable abilities, and a few spells that they can't depend
on without massive ritual.
>> The problem I think is the way the number of such spells available
>>leaps up so very quickly. If you can maintain 1 permanent spell on
>>yourself, then 1 point more and you can maintain 2, 2 points more
>>and you can maintain 4, 3 points more 8, etc.
>Via Multispell, you mean?
Its intrinsic to the logarithmic mature of both Multispell and
Duration. The more Duration you have, the more spells yuu can
maintain on yourself at once.
>Unfortunately that's of little use to me as a GM, since the PCs are
>the ones that are going to be taking advantage. I basically found
>Sandy's rules unplayable in practice - and I was running Kralorelans,
>not Malkioni (where it is even more broken). Which was a shame because
>they're a delight to read, and they have a strong underlying logic.
Yeah. I really have no idea if Sandy playtested them much,
certainly the version that is widely circulated.
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