OSR planning: magic system 

The game is meant to start as Low Magic, not in the sense of there not being much magic, but that the magic that is readily available is low-powered. The Cleric and Magic-user classes are not available at the start (the PCs' adventuring company may discover more powerful magic later, but initially only "semi" spell user class exists).

Even then, I don't want Vancian magic nor D&D-magic-but-spell-points. I also don't want mages-are-artillery, clerics-are-doctors.

re: OSR planning: magic system 

I'm struggling to codify exactly how magic works, though. I want a lot of consumable, low-powered items, but spells? Maybe spells don't even exist, just items and rituals? Perhaps mages are just better with those items, or know tricks for combining them or modifying them.

Still not sure about Clerics. Maybe they don't exist at all, just like Gods are just myths and targets of worship but never appear or prove themselves.

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re: OSR planning: magic system 

I also want powerful magic, particularly powerful _vulgar_ magic (cf Mage: the Ascension) to come at a cost. It can be risky (see Low Fantasy Gaming's "Dark & Dangerous Magic") or cost non-spell-point resources (GURPS, M:tA to a degree) or have well-telegraphed in-game consequences like anti-magic factions that'll send witch-hunters (the elf nazis or their goons are a good option here) to investigate reports of blatant magic use.

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re: OSR planning: magic system 

I think a first step might involve taking the Basic D&D spell list and removing all of the vulgar spells, relegating them to "forbidden lore" the player's guild must discover in-game to gain access to them.

But also making available an artificier retainer who can produce low-level magic items to make up for the loss of simple +1 swords and Fireballs.

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