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GM Hooly

The Dice Pool Podcast - Its a Kind of Magic!

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No we won’t be discussing the history of Queen, but what we will be doing is recording our next discussion episode where we will be tackling MAGIC in the GeneSysRPG. This long awaited episode was so big, we needed a special guest - Chris Witt (GM Chris) from the Order 66 Podcast, and author of the non-official Harry Potter and the soon to be released Familiar settings. He’ll be on hand along with GMs Hooly, Huzz, Flano and Kaitlin to discuss the where, why and how of Magic in the GeneSys RPG Rules.

Why am I posting here? Well you no doubt have questions! So let us know and we will endeavour to get them answered on the show.

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Though I already created spells for what I saw as lacking (Divination, Enchantment, Illusion), I'd like to see the group discuss what spells they would add/feel are missing from the core rules. It would be very interesting to see if they think anything is "lacking" or if you can't achieve various effects from other systems (D&D) with what is currently in Genesys. 

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First, I love the magic system in this game. Mostly because I have always felt that magic in most other systems really limit the ability of the player to feel like a damage dealing mage... you are mostly shoved into the support pigeon hole.

My question would be - what house rules do you use with magic? Do you include any talents that would allow a magic user to specialize in a particular "spell" and reduce difficulty? Do you put any requirements from casting from the different "spell categories" that exist in the Genesys Core rulebook?

Let me know if my question doesn't make any sense.

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I really appreciate the discussions around taking d20 spells (wall of fire comes up a lot, including when I raised the topic) and reworking it via Genesys magic rules.  That let's those of us who cut our teeth on D&D/Pathfinder see how the classic spells can be handled.  That's not a question so much as a request.

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I'm interested to get an idea as to how the Magic system presented in the GCRB is being received. I'm basically scrapping it entirely, except for the Strain-to-cast system, and going to specific named spells from certain schools with variable Strain costs depending on the rank, so they're essentially talents that are restricted based on class.

From what I gather, that's not at all a popular way of going about things. I've found several posts with even less restrictive systems than what I'm working on that weren't treated particularly kindly, but the Genesys magic rules out of the box to me are good for a high fantasy type game where magic is everywhere and a Wizard is a Wizard is a Wizard, though.

I guess how I look at it is that the Genesys magic system represents a home toolbox with basic screwdrivers, wrenches, hammers, etc... all the tools that people can name off the top of their head, and you can use them as you see fit, but it lacks the specialized tools that really give individual wizards a strong theme and move magic beyond the bare minimum.

Long winded way of saying that I'd like to see what the consensus is on the system introduced in the GCRB when it comes to settings that utilize magic in more than a cursory fashion.

Edited by Darrett

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Regarding the magic actions or spells that are available, what do you think about the distribution of them across the 3 skills of arcane, divine & primal? Would you adjust their distribution at all?

Have you come up with any extra or alternative entries for spell additional effects?

As far as game balance goes, do you think it would be too powerful for every spell to be available based on a single skill rather than split to 3?

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Your thoughts on this way of handling magic: arcane, divine and primal are more about the magic source and also change the associated skill. Arcane is Int for a wizard/scholar type while or Presence if for a sorcerer type. Divine is Willpower for the power of belief or Presence for the power of driving the masses (though honestly, I think a clerical type would depend more on the diety followed).  Primal is Cunning (animal-like) or WIllpower (channeling natures power)

Second is I use a sort of specialty system. I do not limit what schools people have access to, but what happens is they get ten schools to chose from:  Attack, Augment, Barrier, COnjuration, Curse, Dispel, Divination, Enchantment, Heal, and Illusion, The player then gets the square of the base knowledge: magic skill as dots/ranks to apply towards specific schools (not to exceed the base skill). It is the ranks in the specific schools that are used for rolling.  For example with two ranks in arcane, a player has 4 dots choosing 2 in attack, 1 in barrier, and 1 in illusion.

So arcane, divine and primal become more roleplaying tools, and boost/setbacks are gained from how the player tries to cast spells and the situation (you may give a druid person using primal a boost when casting something on an animal, but a setback when in a crypt.

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First, love the show, and always look forward to seeing it in my podcast stream.

I'm curious how other GMs are handling what could amount to combined effects of different spell types. Also, connected, how people are adjudicating power levels for undefined spell effects - like summoned creatures' characteristics.

Wall of Flames comes up a lot, which could fall into the Summon spell type pretty easily. But do you determine damage as you would for an Attack magic action? And should added effects like Burn or Poisonous (say, for a summoned cloud of poison) simply increase the difficulty as they would on the Attack spell? Similarly, how are people handling it when a magic user wants to temporarily add magical damage or a quality to an existing weapon?

For summoned creatures, what method have GMs found to determine stats, abilities, etc? Should the caster's base characteristic and Knowledge ranks be used, should successes and advantages play a role, and how about increased silhouette size?

Thanks!

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2 hours ago, O the Owl said:

First, love the show, and always look forward to seeing it in my podcast stream.

I'm curious how other GMs are handling what could amount to combined effects of different spell types. Also, connected, how people are adjudicating power levels for undefined spell effects - like summoned creatures' characteristics.

Wall of Flames comes up a lot, which could fall into the Summon spell type pretty easily. But do you determine damage as you would for an Attack magic action? And should added effects like Burn or Poisonous (say, for a summoned cloud of poison) simply increase the difficulty as they would on the Attack spell? Similarly, how are people handling it when a magic user wants to temporarily add magical damage or a quality to an existing weapon?

For summoned creatures, what method have GMs found to determine stats, abilities, etc? Should the caster's base characteristic and Knowledge ranks be used, should successes and advantages play a role, and how about increased silhouette size?

Thanks!

At my table we've always allowed people to combine spell tables, as long as they're willing to accept the combined Difficulty.

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