Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby soltakss » Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:39 pm

To be honest, adding an extra 3 or 4 points of armour won't be a game breaker. Don't forget that NPCs can have Common Magic as well.

If you are adding 8 points of armour then that will definitely make a difference, though.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby DamonJynx » Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:34 pm

soltakss wrote:To be honest, adding an extra 3 or 4 points of armour won't be a game breaker. Don't forget that NPCs can have Common Magic as well.

If you are adding 8 points of armour then that will definitely make a difference, though.
Not if your opponents cast Pierce at 4 magnitude or higher :twisted:
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby soltakss » Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:54 pm

DamonJynx wrote:
soltakss wrote:To be honest, adding an extra 3 or 4 points of armour won't be a game breaker. Don't forget that NPCs can have Common Magic as well.

If you are adding 8 points of armour then that will definitely make a difference, though.
Not if your opponents cast Pierce at 4 magnitude or higher :twisted:
And that is why Protection is not a game breaker - there will always be a spell that can be used to counter/avoid your spell.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby danskmacabre » Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:39 pm

IMO 3-4 extra points of armor on every body location (on top of your existing armor) is a game breaker. I can see you feel differently though, fair enough.

If you have a campaign where you expect pretty much everyone to have access to protection, pierce etc, why bother with it at all anyway?
You're pretty much negating the spell anyway.

I'd prefer just to do without it and make common magic very rare. Perhaps what is called common magic DOES exist, but it's died out or whatever.
I understand (as I've pointed out before) that in Glorantha it's standard. Personally I can do without it and I don't like the effect it has on a campaign.
I've seen the protection spell being used in Elric and it made a significant difference.
All you end up with is a sort of "Arms race"
Because as stated, there's always another spell to counter a spell, suddenly everything you face will need more spells to counter your spells.

I'd rather keep the spell casting to the specialists. But hey I appreciate it's a matter of taste. Some people like that everyone can cast spells, I personally prefer it wasn't like that.
Last edited by danskmacabre on Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby Lord High Munchkin » Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:09 pm

That's the joy of the system... it isn't "broken", it's just highly flexible in order to cater to all tastes.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby danskmacabre » Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:19 pm

Indeed yes, The rules itself say that Common magic is optional, so it runs perfectly well without it.
for me, all those combat common spells are game breaking, but like I've said before, It's a matter of taste.

There ARE common magic spells I really like actually, it's mainly the combat related ones I'm uncomfortable with, although I haven't read them all or tried them all out in game.

I like the idea of a campaign where common magic is slowly rediscovered (a bit like discovering runes in Runequest).
I'd just introduce the non-combat common magic though.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby DamonJynx » Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:57 pm

danskmacabre wrote:
I've seen the protection spell being used in Elric and it made a significant difference.
All you end up with is a sort of "Arms race"
Funny, my biggest magic headache in Elric came from the Reflection Rune, didn't use common magic in any form, magic was straight out of the Elric book only (I assume you're meaning the Protection Rune :wink: ). the number of foes that ended up giving themselves a serious wound or worse was frightening!
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby danskmacabre » Mon Mar 17, 2014 2:30 am

Yeah I mean the runes in general (including the protection rune) I didn't use common magic in Elric.
Oh yes I remember reflection, that was NASTY!

There's a few runes in Elric that are truly deadly.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby DamonJynx » Mon Mar 17, 2014 3:39 am

danskmacabre wrote:There's a few runes in Elric that are truly deadly.
Most of them in some form or other!
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby danskmacabre » Mon Mar 17, 2014 5:31 am

The odd thing about many of the Elric runes is they often don't involve any sort of resistance roll at all. Especially some of the triggered Runes.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby Tias » Mon Mar 17, 2014 4:06 pm

Carew wrote:
Because common magic isn't sorcery, isn't meant to be sorcery and is therefore handled in a different way to sorcery? It might be that your game setting doesn't have sorcery at all, but does have spirit magic and divine magic and common magic? Because common magic might be the only magical type available? I don;'t think the problem lies with the rules for common magic at all. Its different to sorcery and so needs to be handled differently. The problem is that in your setting you want to handle common magic slightly differently and your having to adapt the existing rules to make it work in the way you want. That doesn't make common magic or its rules clunky or unnecessary. What your trying to do is fine BTW, and I like the idea of common spells being cast under a grimoire, but that doesn't mean that common spells shouldv've been written like that in first place.

I also think that common magic gets overpowered in Legend. In Runequest 6 the spells really are a lot simpler and lot more limited in effect and better for it, I think.
Point taken. I suppose I will just allow the common magic spells to be manipulated like Sorcery in the grimoire where they exist. I have had to change a lot of magic rules already, so it's not like it's a much bigger overhaul.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby superc0ntra » Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:24 am

Since I run a Glorantha campaign then common magic is a definite in for me.
Had I been running some kind of Sword and Sorcery or RQ Slaine, I would not have used it.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby Harshlax » Thu Mar 20, 2014 3:39 am

While I appreciate that many may not like the concept of "non-magicians" using magic, much of the system assumes the usage of common magic by all characters. OpenQuest, another variant of the system, offers a different way to resolve this issue. It suggests that the common magic system be viewed as "heroic feats" instead, for those characters who don't want "magic". If only spells that could have subtle, self-enhancing effects be picked, along with healing (special first aid techniques), then that refluffing can be maintained. You could even rename "magic points" in line with the new flavour.

You could also go with the old RQ limits of 4 for Bladesharp Protection etc, and 6 for Healing.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby danskmacabre » Thu Mar 20, 2014 11:53 am

Harshlax wrote:While I appreciate that many may not like the concept of "non-magicians" using magic, much of the system assumes the usage of common magic by all characters

I don't agree.
The Rules in Legend specifically state that Common magic is an Optional rule.
Saying it may or may not be appropriate for your campaign.

I would say that many of the creates in the monster books have common magic and this should probably be reviewed as and when they are used.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby auyl » Fri Mar 21, 2014 2:26 pm

I personally don't mind the use of Common Magic in my campaigns. Then again the world I'm playtesting right now is magic strong so common magic is available to most people. There's sociological issues with using magic in this world but that is just a campaign effect. It's really up to the GM on how to balance magic, common or otherwise, in their games. Rather than saying "this spell breaks the system" the GM should be looking at other avenues on how to balance it out.

But like others have said, Common Magic doesn't have to be "common" at all. It can be made an advanced skill and difficult to obtain.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby Harshlax » Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:07 pm

danskmacabre wrote:
Harshlax wrote:While I appreciate that many may not like the concept of "non-magicians" using magic, much of the system assumes the usage of common magic by all characters

I don't agree.
The Rules in Legend specifically state that Common magic is an Optional rule.
Saying it may or may not be appropriate for your campaign.

I would say that many of the creates in the monster books have common magic and this should probably be reviewed as and when they are used.
Maybe I didn't make my point in the right way. Yes, all the magic systems are optional, but if you allow magicians to use the magic systems but deny their usage to non-magicians you can end up with a significant power imbalance. My proposed solution, taken from OpenQuest 2, was to allow and refluff the more subtle common magic spells into a "heroic feat" resource.

If you want to not use any magic at all, fair enough, but granting it to one type without offering anything to another type risks making the non-casters less and less relevant as time goes on. With this alternative, you can have the non-magicians going off to seek training from "martial masters" to teach them the "secrets of The Warrior", with the same significance as your Priests and Sorcerers questing for their Temples or recovering hidden spell knowledge.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby Roguewind » Tue Apr 29, 2014 5:42 pm

I'm in the camp of not liking Common Magic. As the phrase goes, sometimes less is more. So the fact that magic isn't dripping from everyone's fingers means those that can cast magic are are more exciting to me.

As to the comment that taking Common Magic away from the normal people, makes them sub-par to the casters, I've opted to reduce the number of magic points casters get per day to 1d3. I haven't play tested that yet, but I'm hoping it levels the pitch to some degree. Yes, a caster can do a lot of amazing things but that will leave them low on power for a significant time during which the non-casters would be 'top dog'.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby DamonJynx » Tue Apr 29, 2014 9:58 pm

Roguewind wrote:I've opted to reduce the number of magic points casters get per day to 1d3.
I understand your intent but 1d3 per day is waaaayyy too low. For use with common Magic only it may be appropriate but Sorcerers will be nerfed to the point of unplayability. Your proposal will only allow a Sorcerer to cast 1, perhaps 2, very weak spells per day - why would you bother playing one?

If it were say, 1d6, X number of times per day (once for every 20% of grimoire skill perhaps?) you would randomise the MP available for each casting with any residual MP lost and not nerf them completely. You could also scale it by rank; 1d3 for Apprentices, 1D4 for Adepts, 1D6 for Mages & 1D8 for Archmages.

Personally, I think the magic system RAW are fine. As a GM it's up to you to discuss what magical disciplines are available, their use and any limitations with your players prior to starting a campaign. If you feel that magic is too unbalancing simply play in a non-magical setting.

There are 2 series of books by John Flannagan, The Rangers Apprentice and The Outcasts, which while aimed at younger audiences, are great reads. They are pseudo-historical medieval adventures in a world without magic and would adapt easily to Legend.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby Prime_Evil » Wed Apr 30, 2014 4:39 am

A simple solution that I have used in the past is to place a limit on the Magnitude of the progressive spells that characters can cast. Limiting characters to a maximum Magnitude of POW / 4 (rounded down) provides a gritty, low-magic feel without prohibiting Common Magic entirely. At this power level, a character with a POW of 13-14 can only cast spells with a Magnitude of 3 or less. If you feel this is too restrictive, consider limiting Common Magic to POW / 3 instead. At POW / 3, a character with a POW of 13-14 can cast spells with a Magnitude of 4. Note that once you hit POW /2, the restrictions are greatly relaxed - a character with a POW of 13-14 can cast up to Magnitude 6 or 7.

Also, limit the number of Common Magic spells that a character can learn. For sorcery, no character can ever memorise more spells than he has INT, with one spell occupying one point of the INT Characteristic. You could use a similar rule for Common Magic or you could use a different characteristic - perhaps Common Magic depends upon innate talent rather than formal training and characters cannot ever learn more spells that they have CHA. This implies that Common Magic is based upon sheer force of personality more than anything else. If you want to be really restrictive, you could rule that Common Magic spells with a variable Magnitude must be learned at the maximum Magnitude that the character wishes to cast and each point of Magnitude invested in a spell occupies one point of CHA. It's entirely up to you.
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Re: Legend and Common magic: Who uses it?

Postby Roguewind » Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:28 pm

DamonJynx wrote:I understand your intent but 1d3 per day is waaaayyy too low.
My group haven't played much Legend but we have been gaming for decades, including some previous editions of RQ, so while new-ish to Legend we have been around the block a few times. :wink:

RQ/Legend has always been my favourite fantasy system, except for the magic. I love how you can build your spell etc but I never liked how powerful it made any imaginative player or the fact that everyone could do it. Not saying that it's wrong, just not to my taste.

When we've played previously, we had one magic user in the group and found that the magic user was over shadowing the none magic users. Your experience may be different or you may like that sort of game.

Since I liked the rest of the system, I have spent time trying to balance the magic more to my taste (and yours appears to be different). I did toy with the idea of creating a Dark Sun based setting, with Defilers, or having a system requiring a sacrifice to gain magic points but never got around to it. I then read RQ6 where they suggested for a medium magic level game reducing the recovery down to a point a day, and justified why they thought that was OK. That reduced it more than I wanted, so I went with a d3.

It's also worth remembering that it's easier to up the power levels mid game, than to reduce the power levels. So if we found 1d3/day was restricting the casters to much, they wouldn't object to me upping it to 2d6/day (or more likely a smaller step). However if I started at 2d6/day, and it didn't reduce the magic to a level I wanted, they would feel understandably hard done by when their characters are effectively nerfed down to 1d3/day.

As to reduced magic point recovery limiting them to a spell of so a day, that's not quite true. They start with full magic points, so if they blow that straight away and they have an encounter requiring magic every day, then it's potentially true. However, if they do not have such an encounter every day, they will fill up over time and will approach most situations with most of their magic points at least. It does mean that when they run into a problem, they will be concious that they will need to conserve power and be more creative, in case something happens later that day or tomorrow. In all the fiction I've read with magic users in, my favourite stories are the ones were the wizard (or whatever) has the potential to off load a lot of magic but rarely does. Think about Gandalf, though out the books he doesn't actually cast much magic on a daily basis, and there's no suggestion that he's been nerfed.

It also opens up more options to me. A previous story I've ran, involved the party being on the run and chased through the wilderness. The intention was to hit them with a series of low damaging fights every couple of days so that they'd feel bruised, battered and under pressure. However, each day, the healer would just heal them of all injures before retiring for the night. So that didn't quite work. If the healer only had enough power to partially heal some of the group I could have made that chase part of the story much more exciting.

I'm not quite sure why if I do not like the magic/none magic balance you suggest going for a setting without magic as opposed to addressing the balance You are right, I could run a magic free game, and I've read loads of historical novels so even if I couldn't come up with a non-magic setting, I'd have a lot of scope for picking and choosing from those, but the story I want to tell is set in a world where magic is possible but rare and generally witnessed by a friend of a friend. So reducing the level seems more appropriate.

So in answer to the original question of who uses Common Magic, I don't. :lol:

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