Author Topic: Urban Magic  (Read 1595 times)

Offline KlausGerken

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Urban Magic
« on: October 21, 2018, 04:34:19 PM »
I want to create a wizard based on Matthew Swift (A Madness of Angels by Kate Griffin)

He has a very very citybased magic. I'm especially impressed by a situation where he flees a monster. When he reaches a subway-station, he uses the "custom of the city" that you can only enter if you are in possession of a valid ticket, using his magic to enhance this custom, while reading the term of use aloud. That is awesome! He does not (IIRC) create an element like Harry does when using a fireball, but is able to direct the elements allready in the city: Water in the earth, Electrity in the powerline, etc. He talks to the animals of the city, etc.

I found the "urban magic" in the sponsored magic list an I like it very much, maybe it can be used if modified, esp. if it is added to a full wizard template.

But what I want to dissus here is a modified approach to a full wizard.

Your Story,  p. 253 tells us that the platonic view on elements (fire, earth, etc) isn't the only one working - asian casters would use the daoist approach. So lets start with different "elements"

Version 1:

Light
Sound
Building
Life
Traffic

Version 2:
Asphalt
Neon
Electrity
Anonymity
Customs

Also, since I want to interact with tech, I need to change the "Wizards can't use tech"-caveat. YS, p. 229 says its not really defined.Somewhere else (maybe in the books) its said that before tech was a thing, Wizards made milk sour... so they only have an area of incompetence. That could be something totally different.

I'm not sure what that could be. In the age of the internet a young wizard might "believe" in tech (like my version does), so tech works for him - even better then for mortals. But what is it, he does not believe in? Inter-personal relations springs to mind, seeing all the people talking over the internet, but in my group that would be impossible - we play mostly drama and inter-personal relation take up a lot more time then killing monsters.

Not being able to interact with "Nature" would work too, but that has never been a theme for both the books and our table, so that would be "too cheap"

Any ideas or input?

Offline Sanctaphrax

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Re: Urban Magic
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2018, 05:06:49 AM »
Exploiting the customs of the city sounds like a taggable Declaration to me. Invoke TICKET TO RIDE, get +2 to complexity/a casting roll. Thaumaturgy territory, for the most part, since most customs are too complicated for Evocation.

Those elements sound a bit narrow and esoteric for Evocation. I'm not sure how I'd zap a monster with a blast of Anonymity.

Electricity seems like a good element, though. I'd be inclined to include light and sound in its bailiwick, maybe even rename it to Energy. Asphalt/Building and Life are basically just Earth and Wood, so those work. But I'm not sure what you'd do with the other two. Maybe Spirit could stick around?

Accidental hexing being compel-based, it's not really a weakness for a player. It's like having no legs; sucks for the character, but the player's getting paid. Wouldn't break anything to just ditch it.

Still, thematically it's better to have a weakness. How about pollution? Cities put out a lot of smog and a lot of garbage. Maybe urban mages are just preternaturally filthy, like living smokestacks.

Offline KlausGerken

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Re: Urban Magic
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2018, 10:07:00 AM »
Exploiting the customs of the city sounds like a taggable Declaration to me. Invoke TICKET TO RIDE, get +2 to complexity/a casting roll. Thaumaturgy territory, for the most part, since most customs are too complicated for Evocation.

Those elements sound a bit narrow and esoteric for Evocation. I'm not sure how I'd zap a monster with a blast of Anonymity.

Electricity seems like a good element, though. I'd be inclined to include light and sound in its bailiwick, maybe even rename it to Energy. Asphalt/Building and Life are basically just Earth and Wood, so those work. But I'm not sure what you'd do with the other two. Maybe Spirit could stick around?

Accidental hexing being compel-based, it's not really a weakness for a player. It's like having no legs; sucks for the character, but the player's getting paid. Wouldn't break anything to just ditch it.

Still, thematically it's better to have a weakness. How about pollution? Cities put out a lot of smog and a lot of garbage. Maybe urban mages are just preternaturally filthy, like living smokestacks.

Anonymity is mostly veils, but also hacking, thinking about the rest. I want this guy to be a lot different from a normal wizard, not necessarily more powerful.

And the smokestack... AWESOME idea!