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EXERCISE Magic System

Discussion in 'BUILDING WORLDS' started by Lstorm, Apr 5, 2015.

  1. Many worlds take magic for granted as something that exists and can be used intuitively by a group of people, harnessed through a great deal of effort or perhaps channeled in an entirely different manner. Yet sometimes, these very same worlds do not devote any attention as to how this phenomenon works and even though a reader may only get to see its effects, a unique magical system can go a long way.

    Your task is to create a magic system for your world, or in other words, lay down the basics of how magic works. You can use the following sheet to help you, or just type it up by yourself.



    Method of Acquisition: (How do people get their magic?)

    Basic components:

    Spell or ritual structure:

    Method(s) of Activation: (Once a spell or ritual has been built, how is it activated, if it needs activation at all?)

    Source: (Where does the magic come from?)

    Necessary resources: (What do you need to cast a spell or ritual in this system? Abstract concepts like mana and life energy also count, along with optional ingredients!)

    Lingering effects: (Basically any long-time effect of the spells or rituals of this magic system)

    Stylistic elements:

    Effect(s) on Caster(s):

    Describe, in detail, how one certain spell or ritual goes down in this magic system!
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  2. Name: Arcana

    Limitations: Dependent on the desired effect. Ranges from metal fortitude to physical strength, current emotions to pain tolerance.

    Method of Acquisition: Years of study with experienced Arcani (plural of Arcanus, a magic user), as well as natural talent

    Basic components: The five basic elements (Similar to the Wiccan Elements: Fire, Water, Earth, Air, and Spirit), the elements of Life, Death, and Time, as well as five basic emotional extremes: Rage, Grief, Elation, Ecstasy, Agony, Exhaustion. Additional elements can be created by combining Base Elements. For example, Fire+Water=Lightning. Life+Death=Resurrection. Earth+Rage=(earth-based disaster, such as earth quakes or landslides). Agony+Spirit=Psychologic (mental manipulation). Etc.

    Spell or ritual structure: Invocation, accompanied by appropriately drawn circles and sigils. This is followed by a directional motion, usually a thrust, like a push, or a simple point of the finger. This directional guide must be maintained through the duration of the spell (with exceptions) or the effect will run wild. A stream of flame meant to strike one building, left unguided, will burn the surrounding field as well, and possibly the caster. Only Existential Elements (Fire, Water, Earth, Air, Spirit, Life, Death, Time) have set sigils, while Emotional Element (Rage, Elation, Exhaustion, Elation, etc.) sigils are individual to the caster, drawn as they see fit within the emotion.

    Method(s) of Activation: Once built, the desired effect is activated and maintained by the directional gesture mentioned above.

    Source: Much speculation has occurred over the years; some say it is the work of the Gods, some say it is radioactivity, some say it is nature's gift, and others say it is the manipulation of one's own life-force. No one is as of yet certain of the source.

    Necessary resources: It is widely accepted that life-force, the energy of the spirit and soul, is absolutely necessary. In certain spells, such as necromancy, it's polar opposite known as death-force, or the energy of lingering spirits and rotting dead, is used. Most people use what is known as a Focus, an object through which a person can channel their magic. More chaotic Arcani, such as the radical anarchist (crazy chaotic neutral) guild known as the Electromancers, have abandoned the use of Foci and use their bodies- most often their fingers, to give their lightning magic more room to roam, free of restriction. These types Arcani have specialized guiding gestures for their craft, designed to activate the spell but give it no set direction. Pre-created Arcana Circles are employed as well, inscribed on either Foci or flesh for quick casting in a spellfight.

    Lingering effects: The effects of magic use vary from person to person, some being driven insane, some becoming physically frail, some becoming more susceptible to disease, and other such effects. As the cost of using magic is the use of one's life-force, it weakens the body of the caster over time.

    Stylistic elements: The sigil styles vary from magic type to magic type. Fire sigils are graceful, but wild, lightning sigils are sharp and angular, water sigils are flowing. Individual casters can also add their own touches and stylistic flair, personalizing the particular spell.

    Effect(s) on Caster(s): The immediate effects are usually just fatigue, as magic is draining to wield. It's the long-term effects one must be wary of.

    Describe, in detail, how one certain spell or ritual goes down in this magic system!

    There is a specialized spell, known generally as the Arcan Breacher, that is basically a breaching charge used by military, law enforcement, and criminal Arcani. A circle with successively smaller circles inside each other, usually in either blood, clay, or flammable liquid, is drawn on the wall meant to be breached. The circles are meant to act as a timer, with one circle representing one second. The lawful minimum for this spell is five circles. The caster's sigils for Fire and Rage are set at the eight compass directions in the spaces between each circle, and outside the main circle, with a large Time sigil drawn in the middle. The right hand is then placed upon the Time sigil with the palm against the wall and fingers facing horizontal and outwards, then rapidly turned vertically. The circles will glow like lights in them have been turned on from the innermost to the outermost in order, one second per circle, until the circle explodes in the direction presented by the breaching Arcanus (inward), forcing the wall with it, much like our modern breaching charges. It is best to take cover in the time delay, as while the spell is directed in one direction, small amounts of debris and flame shooting the other way are not unheard of.
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