Magic

Obtaining Magical Ability

In order to use what passes for magic in the world of Norsinovia, characters must first gain training in the Arcana skill. This is only possible given the following pre-requisites:

Feats: Arcane Studies or Godly Devotions, Mental Conditioning, Ether Exposure
Abilities: INT = 12 or higher OR WIS = 12 or higher

Upon meeting these pre-requisites, the character gains 1 Arcana skill point.

The only way to gain further ranks in the Arcana skill is to take the feat Ether Experience which gives a further +1 ranks to the skill. This feat can be taken up to 9 times.

Modified Arcane Skill

A character’s modified arcane skill is determined by which feats they took.

If the character took the Arcane Studies feat, their modified arcane skill is Arcane Skill Ranks + INT Bonus.

If the character took the Godly Devotions feat, their modified arcane skill is Arcane Skill Ranks + WIS Bonus.

Using Magical Ability

A magic users spells are represented as cards in a deck. In order to cast spells, magic users must draw cards from the deck by taking a full round action known as ‘drawing ether’.

On their turn, the player declares they are drawing ether and rolls 1d20 and adds their modified arcane skill to the result against a DC of 15. If successful, the player draws 5 cards as their opening hand.
On a subsequent turn, players can modify their hand by drawing ether again but must first decide which cards they are going to discard. Those cards are placed in a discard pile and then another attempt to draw ether is made against DC 15. If successful, the player draws cards to refill their hand to 5 cards. If the roll is a failure, no new cards are selected and the player is left with a hand of whichever cards they did not discard.

Eg. Garl has a modified arcane skill of 4. On his first turn in combat, he decides to draw ether and rolls a d20 against DC 15 arcane skill check. He succeeds and draws 5 cards. When his next turn comes around, Garl decides 3 of the cards he’s carrying are no longer useful to him and he discards them before rolling again to draw ether (DC 15 arcane skill check). He succeeds and draws 3 new cards which he adds to his remaining 2 cards for a full hand of 5.

Eg. Bargle has a modified arcane skill of 7. On his first turn in combat, he decides to draw ether and rolls a d20 against DC 15 arcane skill check. He succeeds and draws 5 cards. When his next turn comes around, Garl decides that 3 of the cards he’s carrying are no longer useful to him and he discards them before rolling again to draw ether (DC 15 arcane skill check). He fails and is left with a hand of 2 cards until he can successfully draw ether again to refill his hand to 5.

When the character casts a spell, they play the card from their spellhand and follow the spell’s particulars as stated on the card or handbook. Some cards remain in play for a duration (eg. darkness), others are immediately discarded after use (eg. magic missile).

If the last card in the deck is drawn, the discard pile is reshuffled to recreate the deck.

At the end of an encounter, all discarded cards are reshuffled into the deck. The player keeps their current hand (unless they move away from the location – see restrictions).

Using Magic Outside of a Combat Encounter

Magic outside of a combat encounter functions in the same manner.

Restrictions
CHARACTER CLASS LEVEL ETHER DRAWS/DAY SPELLS/DAY
1 1 + INT/WIS Bonus 1 + INT/WIS Bonus
2 1 + INT/WIS Bonus 1 + INT/WIS Bonus
3 1 + INT/WIS Bonus 1 + INT/WIS Bonus
4 1 + INT/WIS Bonus 2 + INT/WIS Bonus
5 1 + INT/WIS Bonus 2 + INT/WIS Bonus
6 1 + INT/WIS Bonus 2 + INT/WIS Bonus
7 2 + INT/WIS Bonus 3 + INT/WIS Bonus
8 2 + INT/WIS Bonus 3 + INT/WIS Bonus
9 2 + INT/WIS Bonus 3 + INT/WIS Bonus
10 2 + INT/WIS Bonus 4 + INT/WIS Bonus
11 2 + INT/WIS Bonus 4 + INT/WIS Bonus
12 2 + INT/WIS Bonus 4 + INT/WIS Bonus
13 3 + INT/WIS Bonus 5 + INT/WIS Bonus
14 3 + INT/WIS Bonus 5 + INT/WIS Bonus
15 3 + INT/WIS Bonus 5 + INT/WIS Bonus
16 3 + INT/WIS Bonus 6 + INT/WIS Bonus
17 3 + INT/WIS Bonus 6 + INT/WIS Bonus
18 3 + INT/WIS Bonus 6 + INT/WIS Bonus
19 4 + INT/WIS Bonus 7 + INT/WIS Bonus
20 4 + INT/WIS Bonus 7 + INT/WIS Bonus

A character may only attempt to draw ether a number of times per day equal to the number indicated on the above table. That number is modified by the character’s INT/WIS bonus. After an extended rest, the number is reset.

Eg. Garl, a level 2 arcane scholar with an INT bonus of +3, during the course of the day drew ether to find his ‘alter minds’ spell and then again to find his ‘identification’ spell. Garl now finds himself in combat and with only two more available attempts to draw ether to get the spells he needs.

A character may only cast spells per day equal to the number indicated on the above table, modified by their INT/WIS bonus. After an extended rest, the number is reset.

A character may only cast spells of a level equal to their UNMODIFIED arcane skill ranks.

Eg. Garl has an unmodified arcane skill of 2 and is therefore restricted to crafting his spell deck with spells of level 2 or lower.

Magic in Norsinovia is tied to locations. If a character moves more than 500ft in any direction from the point where they drew ether, the cards drawn at that time are discarded and reshuffled into the deck.

Eg. Garl thought that an NPC the party was conversing with might turn aggressive and drew ether to prepare some magic to help in combat. It turned out that the NPC did not attack and now the group has moved on, heading out of the city. The spells Garl prepared are reshuffled into the deck and he has expended one of his draw ether uses for the day. A waste!

Spells

There are 13 spells in the beginner spell deck. They are:

1.Arcane/Divine Flame
“As if a great heat was directed to a single place all at one moment, flames spring up where you desire them.” – This spell can be used to light a campfire or a torch as a minor action, or to set fire to a creature or building as a standard action. The flames burn for 1d4 x Caster level+INT/WIS fire damage +5 ongoing. Save negates. Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’). ie: A caster of level 4 with a +3 INT bonus can cast with a range of 30’ and does damage of 4d4+3 fire damage.

2.Arcane/Divine Frost
“A chill creeps out of nowhere, freezing water, blood, and bone.” – This spell can be used to turn to ice all within a 5ft cube per caster level (Caster level 4 = 20×20x20). Wet floors turn to ice, fog turns to snow, and living creatures suffer 1d4 x Caster level + INT/WIS cold damage and must save FORT or be slowed (FORT save ends). Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’). ie: A caster of level 4 with a +3 INT bonus can cast with a range of 30’ and does damage of 4d4+3 cold damage.

3.Arcane/Divine Waters
“Through cracks and tiny holes in the grounds and walls water seeps forth, quickly flooding the area.” – This spell can be used to flood an area with 5 cubic feet of water per caster level (Caster level 4 = 20 cubic feet). The flood is gradual, at the rate of 5 cubic feet per round. The spell cannot be used to directly harm a creature, but the water remains in place as long as it can be contained and creatures are subject to water and drowning rules as normal. Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’).

4.Arcane/Divine Growth
“Spurred on by some unnatural cause, plants in the area begin to grow and thicken hampering movement and sight.” – This spell causes all plant life in a 5’ square per (caster level + INT/WIS bonus) to suddenly grow dense and treacherous. Any squares affected are now considered difficult terrain and may grant concealment. The height of the affected area is equal to caster level x 5’. ie: A caster of level 4 with an INT bonus of +3 can create a 35’ square area (7×7) of dense plant life to a height of 20’ (4 squares). Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’) Squares within the affected area that do not previously contain any plant life are not affected.

5.Arcane/Divine Light
“Unlikely as it may seem, lights burn brighter and last longer at your whim.” – This spell can be used to increase the length of time that a light remains lit, needing no fuel to consume once the fuel has run out. Increase the default length of time by (caster level + INT/WIS bonus) hours. ie: a torch will burn for 1 hour normally before going out, but a caster level 4 with INT bonus of +3 can cast light upon the torch to make it burn for 8 hours (1 + 7) before going out. The caster can cause the light to go out at any time after having cast arcane/divine light upon it. If the light is put out at a time before it normally would have gone out (ie, if the torch is snuffed out after 30 minutes) it is treated as normal and has its natural remaining time left if relit (the torch would have 30 minutes left of light in it if relit). If arcane/divine light was cast on the torch with 30 minutes of life left in it, the amount of time the torch could remain lit is now 7 hours 30 minutes. After the default amount of life for the light source has been used, the item is consumed if snuffed out (after an hour of use, the torch is consumed if put out, regarless of whether or not it has had the arcane/divine light spell cast upon it).
In addition, this spell may be used to cause a blinding flash eminating from any light source, including any object or surface that is reflecting light (eg. the sun reflecting off of a mirror). Any creature facing the direction of the light source must make a REFLEX save or by blinded for 1d4 rounds. You must be able to see the light source to trigger it. Range is 30’ + (caster level x 5’)

6.Arcane/Divine Fog
“At your direction a light mist begins to form and thicken into dense fog, obscuring all from view” – This spell can be used to create dense fog (total concealment) in a 5’ square per (caster level + INT/WIS bonus) surrounded by light fog (concealment) on all sides. The height of the fog is equal to caster level x 5’. ie: A caster of level 4 with an INT bonus of +3 can create a 35’ square (7×7) of dense fog, light fog surrounding, to a height of 20’. Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’).

7.Arcane/Divine Lightning
“With a sharp crack of thunder, lightning lances down from the heavens even on the most clear of days.” – This spell can be used to bring lightning down upon an area. This spell can only be used where the sky can be seen directly. It is an area burst 10 (a 10×10 square) spell with a range of 10’ + (caster level x 5’). The lightning strikes the highest point within the burst, regardless of whether or not that is the intended target. The area burst size is reduced by arcane skill ranks to a minimum of 1. ie: a caster has arcane ranks of 4 so the area burst is now 6 (6×6 square). The lightning strikes for 1d6 x Caster level + INT/WIS lightning damage and the target must save vs FORT or be STUNNED & DEAFENED (FORT save ends). ie: A caster of level 4 with a +3 INT bonus can cast with a range of 30’, area burst 6, and does damage of 4d6+3 lightning damage.

8.Arcane/Divine Knowledge
“A question that has been bothering you suddenly seems quite clear.” – This spell can be used to ask a question of the DM that will be answered with a single word. If the answer cannot be given in a single word, the spell is not used and may be attempted again on another turn. Ex. “What is the monster’s weakness?” “Fire.” “Is this weapon magical?” “Yes.”

9.Arcane/Divine Healing
“With a glance you notice that wounds are not quite as bad as they were once perceived to be.” – This spell allows one ally within range (or self) to spend a healing surge and recover an additional 1d4 per caster level + INT/WIS bonus. ie: A character with 4 caster levels and an INT bonus of 3 grants a healing surge + 4d4+3 HP. Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’).

10.Arcane/Divine Protection
“Upon your word, armour begins to deflect blows that might have once bit deep.” – This spell grants a +(1 + caster level) bonus to AC to any target within range (Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’)). The duration of the bonus is caster level + INT/WIS bonus.

11.Arcane/Divine Sight
“By focusing on a specific object, person, or place you are granted a vision of it.” – This spell allows the caster, by closing their eyes and concentrating, to see an object, person, or location of their choosing in their mind. The vision lasts arcane skill + INT/WIS bonus in minutes or until the caster opens their eyes. The vision appears to them as if they are standing next to the object or person or in the center of the location that they name. They can move about the area, but only if they can move in the same manner in the location where they actually are. They can only move in a 5’ x (arcane skill + INT/WIS bonus) square centered on where they appeared in the location. IE a caster level 4 with an INT bonus of +3 can move within a 35’x35’ (7×7) square centered on where they appeared. The caster can see, hear, and smell as normal, but cannot otherwise interact with the scene. If the object they are focusing on is too vague (“I want to see where John is”) then the spell does not work, is not used and may be attempted again on another turn.

12.Arcane/Divine Favour
“Some kind of unnatural luck overtakes your chosen target and it seems they succeed in almost everything they do.” – This spell grants a +(1 + caster level) bonus for all attack rolls, damage rolls, saves, and skill checks to any target within range (Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’)). The duration of the bonus is caster level + INT/WIS bonus.

13.Arcane/Divine Curse
“Some kind of unnatural bane overtakes your chosen target and it seems they fail in almost everything they do.” – This spell confers a -(1 + caster level) penalty for all attack rolls, damage rolls, saves, and skill checks to any target within range (Range is 10’ + (caster level x 5’)). The duration of the penalty is caster level + INT/WIS bonus.

SPECIAL RULES REGARDING ‘HANDS’

As a special rule, the DM may play with the following rules. If the player can play a poker hand (1 pair, 2 pair, 3 or a kind, etc.) special effects can take place as follows:

ONE PAIR = Learn any level 1 spell (see note below)
TWO PAIR = Learn any level 2 spell (see note below)
THREE OF A KIND = Learn any level 3 spell (see note below)
STRAIGHT = Learn any level 4 spell (see note below)
FLUSH = Learn any level 5 spell (see note below)
FOUR OF A KIND = Learn any level 6 spell (see note below)
STRAIGHT FLUSH = Learn any level 7 spell (see note below)

NOTE: Learned spells can only be added to the caster’s deck when they reach the appropriate level.

Magic

Norsinovia Tyndareus