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Author Topic: "Steampunk Sorcerers"?  (Read 3209 times)
Morfedel
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« Reply #30 on: August 20, 2010, 03:12:36 PM »

What I meant was, some kind of separate rules governing sorcery and science. For example, iron kingdoms; their mechanika was more than simply the sum of its parts.

Having done some work in that system for Privateer in years back, my opinion of the mechanika system was simply a more elaborate, difficult-to-use magic item crafting system that put charges on everything. Smiley I believe the current magic item system works quite well to represent most mechanikal items, as most of that gear ended up being "base item + single effect" with that effect being an alternative damage type or what have you. Paying Rep for these items replaces paying XP to do schematics, then building the plates, etc etc. The rest is the color of the paint - and our system is designed to take whatever color you want Wink

If you wanted to make magic item creation seem more in depth, you could always treat Building as a Complex Downtime task - for example, instead of making 1 roll then multiplying by the amount of downtime period, you could roll for each portion of that period and apply setbacks and so on at each phase. For example, I have 5 weeks, I don't roll on the chart, compare to the W line, then multiply by 5 - instead I make 5 Crafting checks, 1 for each W, to see how much I create. Each challenge could represent a different task of mechanika building (#1 - draw schematics, #2, build plates, #3 - design battery, etc.) as well. While this introduces the chances of errors and makes for more rolling, it also gives you a chance of threats and increased speed in construction - you wouldn't be beholden to a single crummy roll this way. Does that spark some ideas?

Well, this is the point. If you are just going to say all you news to do is reskin magic for mechanika / steampunk and psionics, why have a separate system for divine power? After all, d&d actually had a closer relationship systematically between divine and arcane magic than FC does. By your argument, they should have just reskinned the arcane magic instead of making a different system.

OK. Hold on a sec.

1) I think psionics is different. I never told you magic=psionics, otherwise I wouldn't have been dabbling with a whole new rules system for them.

I never said you specifically said that. Sorry, someone else did, and I didn't make it clear who I.was replying to.

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2) Divine magic is different in our system in how it is gained and used, not the spells. In D&D, aside from the declared source and classes which use it, divine magic as a system is identical to arcane magic. Our system actually draws a stronger contrast between the two than D&D does.

Wait, you just lost me. You said divine power is identical to arcane power in FC and then say you draw a greater distinction?

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3) Are we even talking magic as in spellcasting, or magic as in magic items? The lines in the last point are becoming blurred.

Both... or neither, or either. What I meant was I wanted.to see a.distinction between the current rules and how the industry would impact the practice. As your book said, in the industrial age magic blended with technology could accomplish things neither could alone. I'd like to see something to support that. Whether it as magic items or what.

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By the same.token, why even bother with a Spellbound book? And that's the point. If It's different enough to justify a different system for divine magic, I certainly think the same is true of psionics and steampunk magic items.

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Spellbound is not redefining how magic (as in spells that you can cast, and the people who cast them) works in Fantasy Craft. It is expanding it. Nothing to do with magic items.

Ignore what everyone else has said on psionics - psionics, when they come out, will not be spells in a different color of paint. I am the only one in this conversation who can say that definitively, so you can set that one aside Smiley

Cool Wink

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I'm not saying I want mechanika or steampunk to be more complex; IK is too complex. I don't want it more or less powerful. I just want it different.

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So the nugget of your point is, you think we need to do a seperate magic item system specifically for techno-magical items built in the Industrial era. Am I understanding you correctly?

If so, what, specifically, do you think that should contain? What does the basic magic item creation system not do already that your ideal system would need to do for it to feel different enough? I have offered a solution of making the process of crafting seem more involved, with a way to call out individual tasks in the building process but I can't keep throwing ideas blindly at what your shooting for without a better idea of what you think would make something like this "feel different" in the way you expect.

My experience is "different just to be different" leads to a) angry players who don't want to learn another path to the exact same result, or worse b) confused players who can't rectify the best path for them to get to the solution they want. Anything I as a publisher produce will need to be justifiably, workably different with a good, attractive reason for players to bother to learn it.

I'm not trying to be an ass here. If I was running a game just set in the industrial era , what you suggest would be fine.

But this world.is.going to have cultures where some are feudal, others reason, etc, and.with the words in the main book about finding new ways to blend magic with science, things never thought possible were.accomplished, and the steampunk sorcerer comment, I was under the impression that a new rules set would come.out.

Because if I have a feudal kingdom just over the mountains there, and a reason or industrial kingdom here, both with mages, what would justify the comment about new and wondrous combinations than what can be done by the other kingdom?

Other than enchanting guns instead of swords, but that feels a bit less than what I'd expected. When I think steampunk, I'm thinking what they can accomplish should be fundamentally different than what the feudal kingdom can.

If this was just a single tech level setting, then resigning and changing the rules as.you mentioned is no big deal. When the sorcerer from primitive land can accomplish the same thing, It's just not the same.

Not to me anyway. Anyway, I wast trying to start an argument. I just think that if arcane magic and divine.power and.psionics are different, then this steampunk application should be too. Nothing necessarily significant. Divine power uses paths, arcane power spell points... perhaps the steampunk could just be modifiees.to the cost, time taken, materials involved, usage, without writing a whole book on it.

Btw, sorry if this post looks messy, I'm posting from my phone, and I'm clumsy on this keyboard.
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EloiseCartwright
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« Reply #31 on: August 20, 2010, 03:24:02 PM »

Okay, looking at Iron Kingdoms, what it has is basically a series of components instead of full on magic items.
How about a system where you can combine x with y with z.

So if you assume each basic item has a Power Source, Conduit & Effect.
Power Sources are either batteries or generators, a generator will turn a fuel into x number of Power Points at a given rate, while a battery just has x number of power points
A Conduit can channel a certain number of power points, either on a trickle system or on a trigger, perhaps with variants to build up power for an overcharge.
Then the effect is your spell/blast/whatever.

Lightning Gun,
Power Source: Coal Burner (2PP/turn, requires 1lb coal/turn maximum load 6lbs)
Conduit: Electric Syphon Coupling (Can build up to 5PP, before wastage, all used on trigger).
Effect: Lightning Strike: 1d6 Electrical damage per PP fired range 15ft.

Alternate Lightning Gun
Power Source: Electric Jar (30PP)
Conduit: Switched Lightning Cord, (carries either 1PP or 5PP takes 1/2 action to switch)
Effect: Lightning Strike: 1d6 Electrical damage per PP fired range 15ft.
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Morfedel
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« Reply #32 on: August 20, 2010, 03:58:19 PM »

Okay, looking at Iron Kingdoms, what it has is basically a series of components instead of full on magic items.
How about a system where you can combine x with y with z.

So if you assume each basic item has a Power Source, Conduit & Effect.
Power Sources are either batteries or generators, a generator will turn a fuel into x number of Power Points at a given rate, while a battery just has x number of power points
A Conduit can channel a certain number of power points, either on a trickle system or on a trigger, perhaps with variants to build up power for an overcharge.
Then the effect is your spell/blast/whatever.

Lightning Gun,
Power Source: Coal Burner (2PP/turn, requires 1lb coal/turn maximum load 6lbs)
Conduit: Electric Syphon Coupling (Can build up to 5PP, before wastage, all used on trigger).
Effect: Lightning Strike: 1d6 Electrical damage per PP fired range 15ft.

Alternate Lightning Gun
Power Source: Electric Jar (30PP)
Conduit: Switched Lightning Cord, (carries either 1PP or 5PP takes 1/2 action to switch)
Effect: Lightning Strike: 1d6 Electrical damage per PP fired range 15ft.


Yeah, something like that looks potentially cool. Heck, I suppose I'd even be happy if the rules were "items made with the art of mechanika are forged much more.easily, thanks to industrial factory and mass manufacturing principles. As such, making a magic ten in this fashion costs 20% less and is forged at half the time it would.normally take. However, composed of a varied of whirling clockwork components makes.it more vulnerable, and has half the points to destroy than a normally forged item of the same type. A.clockwork item cannot poses any damage resistances due to its.delicate nature."

Or, you know,.something like that. Didn't want an entire new book, just a nod in differentiating them. Maybe a few associated feats and skills.
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« Reply #33 on: August 20, 2010, 04:20:50 PM »

And you're still not actually giving design requirements.

How should it be different?

What do you want the finished product to look like?

How do the current systems not work or feel off to you?

If you can't answer some questions and articulate your requirements and desires, no one knows what to do to help you.
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Aldus Vertten
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« Reply #34 on: August 20, 2010, 06:10:47 PM »

"A psionic, a mage, a mechanik and a priest walk into a bar..."  I'm sure there's a joke in there, somehow...


I get what Morfedel wants. He wants a different system for the combination of magic and mechanics. A system that may led to a situation like the one on the joke, where the Mage ask the mechanik..."How the hell did you do that?" because the effect could not be replicated by the magic system



Edit: hat to fix that joke...
« Last Edit: August 21, 2010, 09:54:31 AM by Aldus Vertten » Logged

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Morfedel
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« Reply #35 on: August 20, 2010, 06:30:32 PM »

And you're still not actually giving design requirements.

How should it be different?

What do you want the finished product to look like?

How do the current systems not work or feel off to you?

If you can't answer some questions and articulate your requirements and desires, no one knows what to do to help you.

I never intended to give design requirements. You know, all I did is.ask if they had plans to make a.steampunk sorcerer or something like that. A simple yes or no migration have disappointed, but I want telling them what to do, just asking their intentions.

And now I feel like the victim of the inquisition, starting with veiled comments a out reskinning, and every time I try to.defend my position..

Look,playing the.powers of the priest.and that of.the mage.are.mechanically very different presumably so is the psionics, as they are writing rules.for.that. So, my design criteria is "make it mechanically different, in the same way arcane users, divine users, and psionics users are mechanically different."

Thats it. Why is that so hard to understand?

And for that matter, read the last paragraph, under the era of industrial on page 307. Now Imagine a setting where one kingdom is feudal in tech, and follows all the standard rules, and another that is industrial and is intended to actually live up to the promise of that last paragraph.

Under the current rules, how to you accomplish that promise, and keep it different from the feudal kingdoms; if they get to the same goal and the only difference is the skin, then why even bother?

If that paragraph is supposed to be more than just flavor text, and industrial tech blending with magic is supposed to come up with hinge that are grand new, hen it sure seems unsatisfying, to me, to just say "ah just make a lightning wand and call it a gun."

Because that, then, isn't anything new or wondrous. It's just the same thing in a different canister.

Really, though, all I wanted to know if they were going to make this stuff. I wasn't demanding they do. And now I find myself having to defense.myself instead. I wasn't making demands, just having a single questuon and a conversation. I didn't expect this reaction.

This was a mistake, I see.

Posted from my stupid cell phone. Sorry for the misspellings etc.
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Morfedel
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« Reply #36 on: August 20, 2010, 06:32:56 PM »

"A psionic, a mage, a mechanik and a priest enter a bar..."  I'm sure there's a joke in there, somehow...


I get what Morfedel wants. He wants a different system for the combination of magic and mechanics. A system that may led to a situation like the one on the joke, where the Mage ask the mechanik..."How the hell did you do that?" because the effect could not be replicated by the magic system

THANK YOU!!! I was beginning to feel like I was talking Chinese or something. It seemed so obvious to me.

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Aldus Vertten
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« Reply #37 on: August 20, 2010, 06:52:44 PM »

In absence of a proper system for what you want, you could make use of the campaign qualities to create that difference in the game. Maybe normal sorcery has the Corrupting and/or Difficult Magic permanently on, and Mechanical magic does not, so in a way is more poweful and reliable...

I know it's not what you're looking for, but it could help you define properly the world you are creating...
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Morfedel
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« Reply #38 on: August 20, 2010, 06:57:16 PM »

In absence of a proper system for what you want, you could make use of the campaign qualities to create that difference in the game. Maybe normal sorcery has the Corrupting and/or Difficult Magic permanently on, and Mechanical magic does not, so in a way is more poweful and reliable...

I know it's not what you're looking for, but it could help you define properly the world you are creating...

Actually, its a great idea. Thanks for the suggestion!
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Doublebond
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« Reply #39 on: August 20, 2010, 09:20:40 PM »

Wait, you just lost me. You said divine power is identical to arcane power in FC and then say you draw a greater distinction?

The way arcane spellcasting works is arcane spellcasters select their spells from the list of those available to them, and are able to cast what spells they want, when they want, provided they have the spell points for it. Casting such spells requires a check, and thus it may fail depending on character options and just random chance, but the arcane spellcaster is free to attempt a check as many times as he wants (provided he has the spell points for it and meets any other requirements there may be in place).

In contrast, a priest, a divine spellcaster, cannot choose his spells as easily as the arcane spellcaster can. He is granted access to a number of paths based on his alignment, and some of the steps of those paths may grant him spells (so, he has some influence on what spells he gets by his choice of alignment and what paths he takes steps in). He has no spell points, and is instead given a static number of times a scene he can cast those spells, BUT when he casts a spell, it always succeeds. Always.

Now, the spells the divine spellcaster can get access to are the same kind of spells found in the Grimoir, and thus the arcane spellcaster has access to them too. These are the similarities Alex was talking about. But the method through which these two spellcasters get those spells, and the way in which they cast them, are radically different. These are the distinctions Alex was referring to.

On the whole, both casters are using the same spells, but they're using them in much different fashions.

Understand?
« Last Edit: August 20, 2010, 09:24:34 PM by Doublebond » Logged
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« Reply #40 on: August 21, 2010, 10:52:56 PM »

I would also like to say really quickly that you shouldn't feel the victim of any sort of inquisition or anything similar. The questions and comments are the Crafty Community trying to help, in our own little way.

What I meant by my comment of having mechanika work like a battery was more along the lines of "a mechanikal item can only be used x number of times per scene, but costs 5 less Rep" thing.

The industrial kingdom ends up with more magical items, but the primitive kingdom has items that won't pooh out on them.

This probably still isn't distinctively different for your purposes, bit it does sound like the ideas are getting closer
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esoclectica
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« Reply #41 on: August 22, 2010, 01:42:43 PM »

David Weber has a series starter of 2 novels, Hells Gate and Hell Hath No Fury from Baen books.  They are available electronically.  They chronicle the encounter and accidental war between an industrial 1890 to 1915 culture that also has low power psionic  talents encountering an advanced magical technology society with the equivalent of magical bioengineering and magical computers. 

Both societies have similar abilities that horrify the other.  The psionics use lever and bolt action rifles.  The mages equip their infantry with repeating crossbows cocked by magical batteries.  Both are deadly ranged weapons.  The psionics use mortars and cannon, the mages use portable dragon projectors capable of throwing lightning bolts and fireballs.  The mages use dragons for air mobility and ground attack with lightning, fire and poison gas breath weapons.  The psionics use telepathy with up to 500 mile range for strategic communication and teleportation of messages for tactical commo.  Psionic sniffers are used to detect lies in diplomacy and other psionics use claiudience and clairvoyance for tactical sensor sweeps.

These are examples of very different approaches to achieving equivalent, but very different effects.  They really are not reskinning.  I think this is the level of differentiation that is being suggested/requested.
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Morfedel
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« Reply #42 on: August 22, 2010, 02:08:49 PM »

Wait, you just lost me. You said divine power is identical to arcane power in FC and then say you draw a greater distinction?

The way arcane spellcasting works is arcane spellcasters select their spells from the list of those available to them, and are able to cast what spells they want, when they want, provided they have the spell points for it. Casting such spells requires a check, and thus it may fail depending on character options and just random chance, but the arcane spellcaster is free to attempt a check as many times as he wants (provided he has the spell points for it and meets any other requirements there may be in place).

In contrast, a priest, a divine spellcaster, cannot choose his spells as easily as the arcane spellcaster can. He is granted access to a number of paths based on his alignment, and some of the steps of those paths may grant him spells (so, he has some influence on what spells he gets by his choice of alignment and what paths he takes steps in). He has no spell points, and is instead given a static number of times a scene he can cast those spells, BUT when he casts a spell, it always succeeds. Always.

Now, the spells the divine spellcaster can get access to are the same kind of spells found in the Grimoir, and thus the arcane spellcaster has access to them too. These are the similarities Alex was talking about. But the method through which these two spellcasters get those spells, and the way in which they cast them, are radically different. These are the distinctions Alex was referring to.

On the whole, both casters are using the same spells, but they're using them in much different fashions.

Understand?

Yes, and essentially the same thing I was tying to say. I know that an individual spell is the same from.one.to the other. But much of the mechanics, from casting checks vs auto success, spell points vs none, and even acquisition, are all different, and that's what I meant.

I suppose I didn't make myself clear. It seemed clear to me, but such is how things go, especially on the internet, I suppose.
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Morfedel
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« Reply #43 on: August 22, 2010, 02:19:18 PM »

I would also like to say really quickly that you shouldn't feel the victim of any sort of inquisition or anything similar. The questions and comments are the Crafty Community trying to help, in our own little way.

I did feel like I was kind of being set upon at the time. A couple of comments about gee, anyone should be able to reskin and we should put it in the book next time etc etc, FELT like side.comments at the time. It left me feeling stupid.

However, I will also admit that I had a very, very tough week at work last week, and I was feeling pretty cranky over it.

So please allow me to formally apologize to you all for what appears to have been an overreaction on my part. Not an excuse, just an explanation. So, I'm sorry.

Quote
What I meant by my comment of having mechanika work like a battery was more along the lines of "a mechanikal item can only be used x number of times per scene, but costs 5 less Rep" thing.

The industrial kingdom ends up with more magical items, but the primitive kingdom has items that won't pooh out on them.

This probably still isn't distinctively different for your purposes, bit it does sound like the ideas are getting closer


It's a good start anyway.  Smiley
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Morfedel
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« Reply #44 on: August 22, 2010, 02:36:59 PM »

David Weber has a series starter of 2 novels, Hells Gate and Hell Hath No Fury from Baen books.  They are available electronically.  They chronicle the encounter and accidental war between an industrial 1890 to 1915 culture that also has low power psionic  talents encountering an advanced magical technology society with the equivalent of magical bioengineering and magical computers.  

Both societies have similar abilities that horrify the other.  The psionics use lever and bolt action rifles.  The mages equip their infantry with repeating crossbows cocked by magical batteries.  Both are deadly ranged weapons.  The psionics use mortars and cannon, the mages use portable dragon projectors capable of throwing lightning bolts and fireballs.  The mages use dragons for air mobility and ground attack with lightning, fire and poison gas breath weapons.  The psionics use telepathy with up to 500 mile range for strategic communication and teleportation of messages for tactical commo.  Psionic sniffers are used to detect lies in diplomacy and other psionics use claiudience and clairvoyance for tactical sensor sweeps.

These are examples of very different approaches to achieving equivalent, but very different effects.  They really are not reskinning.  I think this is the level of differentiation that is being suggested/requested.

Thanks again. This, also, is what I was trying to say. In this case, I was referring to steampunk sorcerers rather than regular sorcerers.

I actually wasn't looking for a current ruling. My original post was "would we have them in a further suppliment," not "I want a ruling right now." However, I was left feeling I had to justify my request.

In a world where there can be more than one era operating at the same time, there should be differences aside from reskinning on the practice of magic. Different eras, same worlds, is not unreasonable - after all, we do have primitive peoples with spears in the same world as we have nuclear reactors and spacecraft.

Allow me to point at two quotes from the text of the 1st printing, both page 307:

Quote
The advancement of science also has a great impact on religion and magic. As people gain new options for their ills, they start to rely less on their faiths, at least for healing. Technology continues to displace magic, forcing mages to specialize and cloister, though some embrace and change with the times. These few, and their divine counterparts, use their power in new and exciting ways, experimenting as much as the great thinkers of the time.

and:

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Magic often combines with science in the industrial era, resulting in magical technologies beyond imagination. “Steampunk” sorcerers create lightning bolt guns, time-travel sleds, clockwork animals, and other wild gadgetry that baffles even modern minds. A few mages continue to reject science, however, retreating from society to become witches and cultists.

Now, if you are running an adventure in a single era, these fluff quotes don't really matter. If, however, you have the equivalent of the great british empire moving in to conquer the primitive brutes, using magic, shouldn't there be a difference outside of how the magic is skinned?

Particularly if the age of reason has magic used in "new and exciting ways," and the age of industry with "magic often combining with science," just saying reskin it feels like a bit like a promise being currently unfulfilled.

Again, if I'm running in a single age, no big deal. If the different regions have different eras, it does make more of a difference.

I can houserule things like the best of them, and I'm NOT saying anyone HAS to print rules for this. I'd PREFER official rules, and I'd buy them (after I get the core rules, that is), but if it never happened, I'd come up with something.

I just wanted to know IF there was going to be an official supplement sometime in the future. I see a need, I feel one should be provided, but I'm not demanding one. I'll come up with my own if necessary. I just wanted to know what the official stance by the company would be.

Sorry if I came out like a bull in a china shop on this though. It wasn't my intent.

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