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Realms: Starfall

MAGIC ON PANGEA

Background:

Magic works in this realm, though within the limits of physics. The energy required to produce magical effects is drawn from an inchoate background energy and directed by spells and devices which can in some sense be viewed as focusing aids for a process of mental manipulation. Those furrs born with the ability to perform this manipulation can be trained as mages - those who are not are out of luck, though alchemy and other methods exist which tap the primordial energy without direct mental control. Interestingly, the genes for mage ability seem to be more common among felines than others, and more common among females than among males. No one is sure why. ( This is the basis for the 5 point magical aptitude requirement. The aptitude may NOT be bought later in the game under normal conditions. Alchemists do not require this trait.)

MAGIC

Those with magical ability range from those with limited and/or specialized capability to a very few who are both powerful and adaptable. Some of the more common employments for mages follow.

  • Clairvoyance : Those with such powers may be employed as "scouts" for caravans or ships, as spies or counterspies, or more commonly as the Pangean equivalent of telecommunications. Although expensive, mage relays are often used to transmit information rapidly by governments and merchants, since it is much easier for mages to transmit to each other over long distances than for a single mage to pick up distant images on her own.
  • Energy Projection : Most commonly as flame or electrical effects, energy projection has both military and artisan-related applications. Without the knowledge of gunpowder, Pangean military artillery is heavily dependent on magic for anything more than impact-effect weaponry.
  • Healing : Mages with this ability often learn non-magical methods as well and become physicians, practicing in cities or towns, or in some cases travelling through back-country setttlements and farmsteads on a regular circuit. Mages with higher levels of healing ability are sought for military or police auxiliary duty.
  • Levitation : Useful in transportation and construction. Though normally limited in scope and range, mages with this ability can assist in handling cargo, especially loading ships, and in moving and placing large timbers or stones for construction. There have occasionally been powerful mages who have created permanently magicked flying vehicles, as well.
  • Teleportation : Extremely rare, but highly sought after. Instantaneous transportation has obvious commercial, diplomatic, and military utility, but very few mages have the power to transport themselves or other objects any significant distance. More common uses are for access to high-security storage areas or secret archives, which can then be built without normal access points, or even magically excavated inside solid rock. The Ha-Sheeran government is rumored to maintain teleport links between their major cities and between the capital and its embassies, but if so it has never been proven.
  • Warding : Primarily defensive in nature, although sometimes combined with magical traps. Used for protection, especially of valuables. This can be either direct barriers, or "burglar alarm" spells.

Other spell effects exist, but are much rarer. Transformation spells, in particular, require vast amounts of energy and skill to avoid disastrous results. Illusion spells exist, but are of limited utility and so are not highly developed - although there are always rumors of mages who can become invisible, or create gold from lesser materials, or turn their enemies into toads...

ALCHEMY

Alchemy is a mixture of both chemistry and magic, using both normal chemical substances (such as Greek fire) and magic channeled through potions to create effects. At the cost of somewhat greater effort and much greater preparation time, alchemists can concoct materials that reproduce the effects of most spells, though warding and clairvoyance spells are somewhat limited in usefulness as potions. Many potions, however, require odd, usually rare, substances that are "in tune" with the magickal energy field in order to work.

LEY LINES

Currents run through the energy field, and along the paths of those currents, or ley lines, energy is much more accessible. Most lines are not completely stable, shifting strength and position over time, so it is difficult for mages to establish permanent strongholds to take advantage of the extra power. Points where the lines cross have more stability, the overlap seeming to anchor them in place - but the energy leaks across to the real world too easily, and the areas around such points are realms of chaos and change, where a stray thought even by non-mages (or even non-sapient animals) can be translated into spells. One old legend says that the races of furrkind arose from animals who entered the circles, and warns that those who dare to return risk returning to the state of their forbears as well... but of course, no one believes such fairy tales these days.




Last modified: 2000-Oct-11 11:29:52

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