Author Topic: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?  (Read 21018 times)

Offline devonapple

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2010, 04:11:33 PM »
Temporary Aspect: High On Stimulants
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There, solved your problem for staying up...  (knows and knows of waaay too many computer geeks...)

Well, that would cover 3 Discipline checks.
"Like a voice, like a crack, like a whispering shriek
That echoes on like itís carpet-bombing feverish white jungles of thought
That Iím positive are not even mine"

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Offline Watson

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2010, 11:24:48 AM »
Just remember, the more shifts you have to control, the more dangerous it gets. one failed control check can kill you. Easily.  Picture this: you got a 50 shift spell, you've got 4 shifts left, and roll so poorly that you fail the control check.  Either way, your taking 46 shifts of damage, from fallout or backlash.   Say bye bye to your wizard.  That's the danger of bigger spells. So the pratical limit is the number of shifts of damage you can take.  Stress track + 20 (2 mild, 4 moderate, 6 serious, 8 extreme).

Note the actual casting of the ritual is not really a problem (once you reach +5 in Discipline, you can easily add one shift of power without risking failing the roll). Though if you had a risk of failing the ritual, I would not raise the complexity to 50 and risk a 50-shift fallout...

As suggested, Endurance could restrict Discilpline for very long rituals.

Offline Watson

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2010, 11:32:48 AM »
Note that this not only applies for general Wards, but also for Summoning rituals (more specifically the strength of the containment circle).

You don't have to go to really extreme complexities like 50, without too much trouble, a Wizard could (given enough time) easily create a complexity 20+ containment circle, that should hold all creatures summoned.

What bothers me is that, if the Wizard have enough time (and Discipline 5+), the player could simply say "I create a complexity 20 [or 30, or 40 or whatever] containment circle for my summoning, and as I can't fail the roll, so I suppose it is successful, right?". Given enough time and creativity, the player should be able to come up with enough Declarations to make it work.

I am thinking about some kind of restriction, saying that a Wizard can only create a Ward that has a Complexity equal to 2x his Lore skill (modified by any bonuses he might have).

Offline eberg

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2010, 04:18:11 PM »
Temporary Aspect: High On Stimulants
Temporary Aspect: Eight Empty 2-Liter Bottles Of Mountain Dew
Temporary Aspect: It is by the beans of Java that thoughts acquire speed...

There, solved your problem for staying up...  (knows and knows of waaay too many computer geeks...)
That's fine and dandy until one of the latter two is compelled so you have to pee. :)

Offline eberg

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #19 on: December 13, 2010, 04:24:38 PM »
What bothers me is that, if the Wizard have enough time (and Discipline 5+), the player could simply say "I create a complexity 20 [or 30, or 40 or whatever] containment circle for my summoning, and as I can't fail the roll, so I suppose it is successful, right?". Given enough time and creativity, the player should be able to come up with enough Declarations to make it work.
Remember that thaumaturgical rituals are stories. Something that shifts 40 power isn't served by 20 Resources rolls to gather occult knick-knacks. To do that sort of big juju, you need big ley lines, the stars in the right formation, exactly the right consecrated dagger, a virgin born on the correct day of the correct year, etc. Multiple Declarations raise the bar. By the time you are past the first half dozen, they should be getting into the +6 difficulty range and just gathering what you need should be a task in itself, a sub-plot that can see complications. If you treat rituals (particularly the big ones) as just an exercise in math and game mechanics, it is rife for abuse and really loses something in terms of magic being interesting.

Offline bibliophile20

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #20 on: December 13, 2010, 06:52:47 PM »
That's fine and dandy until one of the latter two is compelled so you have to pee. :)
That's why you make a simple Declaration:  Cather & Bag 
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Offline Belial666

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #21 on: December 13, 2010, 08:06:55 PM »
You aren't going to be doing big rituals that often. So the following is usually acheivable by a wizard;


5 shifts via base Lore
usually 1 shift for specialization
Up to 5 shifts via focus, if focused in that type of rituals
4 shifts from 2 mild consequences
4 shifts from 1 moderate consequence
4 shifts from knowing the right incantation and using appropriate mystical symbolism (Lore declarations)
4 shifts from clearing your mind of distractions and making the appropriate visualizations (Discipline declarations)
4 shifts from evoking a strong magic circle and believing in what you are doing (Conviction declarations)
2 shifts from bying thematically appropriate materials (i.e. iron filings vs fey or holy water and sea salt vs demons - Resources declaration)



We are already at 33 shifts with only fairly basic declarations for the important skills that most wizards with a +4 or +5 to those skills should be able to do easily. It takes 7 exchanges for making said declarations and, for controlling with maximum safety, another 33 exchanges to cast the ritual. So, say 40 minutes for the whole thing if every exchange is a minute.

Offline eberg

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #22 on: December 15, 2010, 05:28:50 PM »
You aren't going to be doing big rituals that often. So the following is usually acheivable by a wizard;

5 shifts via base Lore
usually 1 shift for specialization
Up to 5 shifts via focus, if focused in that type of rituals
4 shifts from 2 mild consequences

The usual wizard has Lore 5, Conviction 5, and a +5 focus for Thaumaturgy complexity?

Quote
4 shifts from 1 moderate consequence
4 shifts from knowing the right incantation and using appropriate mystical symbolism (Lore declarations)
4 shifts from clearing your mind of distractions and making the appropriate visualizations (Discipline declarations)
4 shifts from evoking a strong magic circle and believing in what you are doing (Conviction declarations)
2 shifts from buying thematically appropriate materials (i.e. iron filings vs fey or holy water and sea salt vs demons - Resources declaration)

We are already at 33 shifts with only fairly basic declarations for the important skills that most wizards with a +4 or +5 to those skills should be able to do easily. It takes 7 exchanges for making said declarations and, for controlling with maximum safety, another 33 exchanges to cast the ritual. So, say 40 minutes for the whole thing if every exchange is a minute.

Declarations don't necessarily take an exchange, particularly not when dealing with Thaumaturgical preparation. Buying supplies doesn't take seconds. Lore declarations such as you refer to represent research (what you know off hand is accounted for in your Lore rating contribution). Similarly, the Discipline declarations should represent meditation and ritual that takes time to do.

Also, note that you are performing this ritual with three Consequences, any or all of which the GM can tag to make your Control rolls harder.

Offline eberg

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2010, 05:31:50 PM »
That's why you make a simple Declaration:  Cather & Bag 
Dude. You /don't/ want the GM compelling /that/ aspect.

Offline devonapple

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2010, 05:34:43 PM »
"Like a voice, like a crack, like a whispering shriek
That echoes on like itís carpet-bombing feverish white jungles of thought
That Iím positive are not even mine"

Blackout, The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets

Offline Belial666

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #25 on: December 15, 2010, 06:19:01 PM »
Quote
The usual wizard has Lore 5, Conviction 5, and a +5 focus for Thaumaturgy complexity?
Even an untrained, beginning wizard can have 2 skills at +5. What are they going to be? As for the focus, all wizards get 4 focus slots for free by the base template. So any ritualist that specializes will already have a +4 focus for that.

Quote
Declarations don't necessarily take an exchange, particularly not when dealing with Thaumaturgical preparation. Buying supplies doesn't take seconds. Lore declarations such as you refer to represent research (what you know off hand is accounted for in your Lore rating contribution). Similarly, the Discipline declarations should represent meditation and ritual that takes time to do.
Most declarations do not take time at all. A resource declaration not that you go buy a ritual component but that you have bought such a component already in the past when making your wizard's lab for example. Harry Dresden doesn't go bying stuff every single time he makes a ritual - he has stocked some supplies already. As for how much time it takes to meditate, it depends on your ability; an early Harry Dresden took two hours to fully prepare for a ritual. A more mature Harry Dresden could make a circle in his mind while sitting on a couch.

Quote
Also, note that you are performing this ritual with three Consequences, any or all of which the GM can tag to make your Control rolls harder.
Nope. You sacrifice the consequences before you make most other time-consuming preparations and by the time several scenes of preparation are finished, the milds would have already recovered. Wizard's constitution is an amazing thing.

Offline Quazar

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #26 on: December 16, 2010, 12:03:07 AM »
I'd just houserule it, figure out what the largest reasonable strength the particular wizard or community of wizards could raise and make it that.

I'd only use the rules for making a ward when they are somewhere without one and the zombies/faeries/vampires are coming for them.  That would cut out the silliness.  Your character is probably hurt and the zombies/faeries/vampires are going to be there any minute.  Throw up a rudimentary ward then nut up or shut up.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 01:01:21 AM by Quazar »

Offline Belial666

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #27 on: December 16, 2010, 12:30:26 AM »
Or, throw a maximum-shift Evocation block with your best element (a wizard with 4-5 conviction, +1 specialization could throw a 13-shift block with a FP and a consequence), extend with the three remaining stress slots (evocation extend, the same wizard could call 24 more shifts of power), and then you and your group have 20 whole exchanges to make a Ward before the mega-block fails.


Of course, it is almost always better to just open a Way to the Nevernever, pull a Veil and run for it if there is an army on your heels.

Offline eberg

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #28 on: December 16, 2010, 08:15:22 PM »
Even an untrained, beginning wizard can have 2 skills at +5. What are they going to be? As for the focus, all wizards get 4 focus slots for free by the base template. So any ritualist that specializes will already have a +4 focus for that.
You presented this as an average wizard. It is not. It is a highly specialized wizard. And not all wizards put their magical skills at the top of their pyramid. Of the four wizards in my game, the apex skills are: Empathy, Resources, Conviction, and Lore.

Quote
Most declarations do not take time at all. A resource declaration not that you go buy a ritual component but that you have bought such a component already in the past when making your wizard's lab for example. Harry Dresden doesn't go buying stuff every single time he makes a ritual - he has stocked some supplies already. As for how much time it takes to meditate, it depends on your ability; an early Harry Dresden took two hours to fully prepare for a ritual.
You are incorrect. The stuff lying around is /specifically/ what your Arcane Sanctum represents. Anything else is things you acquire in preparation that takes time as you acquire further components and do further research. Re-read page 266-268. It is very clear on this. It is similar to the example of using a Declaration to case a building with Burglary. It isn't instantaneous or represent knowledge you had before, it represents what you discover after taking the time to, you know, case the building. To quote page 268 under Adjudicating Preparation:

"When the complexity of a spell exceeds your
Lore, you must invest more time and energy to
gather what your wizard needs for the casting.
His own resources are not sufficient for the
task. This additional investment may involve
extended research in his own library or someone
elseís, consultation with spirits or other entities
capable of providing knowledge, rare components
or specially crafted tools, strong symbolic
links, arrangements for contributions of power,
and so on."

Quote
A more mature Harry Dresden could make a circle in his mind while sitting on a couch.
Because he has a higher Lore, which means he can do it really well off-the-cuff.

Quote
Nope. You sacrifice the consequences before you make most other time-consuming preparations and by the time several scenes of preparation are finished, the milds would have already recovered. Wizard's constitution is an amazing thing.
I wouldn't allow that. The point of Consequences is that they have, you know, CONSEQUENCES. If they go away before they are relevant, you are going against the system. The set durations are guidelines which they explicitly tell you to adjust so that the consequence is felt. Besides, thematically the caster of a spell doesn't cut their palm and drip blood on the circle and then go do something else for four hours before casting the spell. The sacrifices that consequences represent are the last thing you do, as the casting of the spell starts.

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Re: Setting up a ward how do you get all the shifts?
« Reply #29 on: December 18, 2010, 04:58:44 AM »
Does this really belong in the Resource Board, seems to me this is better off as a regular topic.