Tempest Fields is a game taking place in Los Angeles, California, beginning in the early part of 2017 (Tech Level 4). The game will be using the Strands of Fate system. Following is all of the information you will need to get your character started.
Campaign Power Level
You begin the game as a Metro-Class Super Hero with 10 refresh points; 27 ability points, with a maximum of 5 points in any individual ability; and 20 advantage points, with a maximum of 10 points in any individual advantage. You may take any character-relevant expert or heroic advantage. Discuss any powers or metro-class super powers with your GM before taking them.
You are a human being without any supernatural abilities. You may start gameplay as a mortal and transition into a supernatural family later, or you may choose to be a mortal during your prelude and play the game as a supernatural being.
Magic permeates the world. Some magic is so old and so widespread that its very existence has rewritten the laws of the material universe around it. Whether the mortal chooses to study alchemy, learn sacred rituals, or read from a dusty book, magic will happen as a result of the mortal’s actions.
Take any magic that your mortal character knows as Ritual Power (see below; ignore the book). A mortal must prepare spells well ahead of time, although a prepared spell may be cast at a later time—such as during a fight. Mortals are often underestimated by supernatural beings. Prepared mortals are, therefore, exceptionally deadly.
In a Nutshell
AP Cost: 0 Advantage Points
Racial Aspect: None
Specialty Aspect: None
Affinity Ability: None
Power Source: None
You are a human being with the ability to summon magic from the Apeiron into our reality. All human beings are born unable to do magic due to the limitations of our material bodies. One becomes a magus after a great deal of practice and meditation, and after one has forged one’s first eidolon (the Platonic reflection of a spell’s effect on the material world). Some mortals find becoming a magus more difficult than others. As with everything else, no one knows if this is due to genetics, environment, or psychology or a combination of the three.
The Collegium believes that there are five classes of magi, each associated with its own element: aether, caelum (air), ignis (fire), tellus (earth), and unda (water). The classes differ primarily in the domains that they control and in the emotions that they use as foci for their spells. The stronger the emotion associated with the spell, the stronger the spell’s effects.
Magi exist that do not fit into any specific class because either their domains are broader than expected or their emotional foci are different than expected. These magi often label themselves as a member of the class that they most resemble. Witches are most likely to diverge from what the Collegium considers the norm.
The emotions that magi use color their magic and, eventually, change their physical bodies. A caeleal that uses fear may develop permanent dark circles under his eyes or become gaunt. A tellar that uses esteem may appear larger, stronger, and more worthy of respect to those around her.
Aetheric magi work with the primal forces of both the material universe and the Apeiron. Their emotional foci are love and hate. Sample domains include light, gravity, atomic forces, space, time, matter, and entropy.
Caeleal magi work with the element of air. Their emotional foci are hope and fear. Sample domains include air, weather, lightning, sound, daemons, illusions, simulacra, and dimensional travel.
Ignious magi work with the element of fire. Their emotional foci are empathy and anger. Sample domains include fire, energy, mind, entropy, motion, combustion, and teleportation.
Tellar magi work with the element of earth. Their emotional foci are esteem and shame. Sample domains include earth, matter, death, ghosts, emotions, necrophagous creatures, and the undead.
Undine magi work with the element of water. Their emotional foci are ecstasy and despair. Sample domains include water, plants, animals, life, nature, and genii.
Anyone can cast a spell using a ritual. Only magi can prepare eidolons ahead of time, allowing them to cast spells they have memorized in an instant, without ritual or ceremony.
Choose one or more domains and purchase Control (see below) as a power with the Rote Reliant and Summon from Nothing modifiers (p. 196). Pay close attention to the Rotes section on p. 197. Magi tie eidolons to hand movements or spoken phrases that serve to “activate” the eidolon and cast the prepared spell. Purchasing a rote allows a magus to cast a spell without penalty. At the start of the game, you will have a number of free rotes equal to your Affinity. Thereafter, purchasing new rotes costs 5 XP each.
Magi may also improvise spells in a pinch. The spell’s effect must fall under the purview of one of the domains over which the magus has Control. The spell is cast at a –4 penalty. Whether or not the spell succeeds, the magus suffers the difference between his roll and the set difficulty as Anima stress as unbridled magic rushes from the magus’s soul, through her body, into the material world. A failure on the spell activation roll may cause the spell go awry at the GM’s discretion.
In a Nutshell
AP Cost: 6–8 Advantage Points
Racial Aspect: Trials of the Magi
Specialty Aspect: Lucid Dreamer (Willpower)
Affinity Ability: +1 rank in Eidologia
Power Source: The Apeiron
Custom Stress Track: Anima (2 AP): To fuel your spellcasting, you use the energy of the Apeiron directed through your soul as if it were a direct portal to that magical universe. Your Anima stress track is equal to your Eidologia + Willpower (modified by Endurance).
Weaknesses (+2 AP): All magi suffer from the following weaknesses.
Eidolon Mnemonics: The use of mantras (gestures and words) to activate eidolons is known to facilitate the otherwise difficult act of spellcasting. Activating a Power that uses the Apeiron's Power Source without performing a gesture, or speaking an incantation, causes you to suffer a –2 penalty for each of the missing components. If you can speak but not gesture, you suffer a –2 penalty; but you'd suffer a –4 penalty if you couldn't do either.
Improvised Magic: Rotes do not grant you a bonus on your activation roll of Control, and you suffer a –4 (instead of a –2) penalty on any use of Control that you do not have a Rote for. In addition, you suffer the difference between your roll and the difficulty you have set as Anima stress, regardless of whether or not you succeeded on the roll.
You might be a magus, or you might be a mortal. Either way, you were born to a family line of witches. Maybe the magic passes on to each generation, or maybe the magic has been in your family since time immemorial but only shows up every now and again. Either way, you are part of a tradition, and traditions are most important to the witches of the world.
Witches are born with an innate supernatural ability (e.g., telepathy, clairvoyance, pyrokinesis, freezing time, etc.) If the witch is not a magus, then the witch has one or a couple of abilities…and that’s that. If the witch is also a magus, then she has one or a couple of abilities in addition to the ability to create eidolons and cast spells at will.
Take the Witch’s Teat aspect. Whether it’s a growth, a wart, a birthmark, a beauty mark, or a third nipple, witches are marked by their magic. Some believe that this is the sign of the devil’s influence over witches. It could be the result of a pact forged long ago between the family and a god or demon. Maybe it’s just another way that magic and the material world interact. No one knows for sure.
Any, but no more than two. And they should be related in some way. It’s unusual for a witch to be a pyrokinetic medium. More likely, she’s a pyrokinetic fire-breather, or a clairvoyant medium. Do not take Control for your innate power. This power must have an associated character aspect, which can be invoked or compelled as normal. A witch’s natural ability is like a muscle. It can be flexed, and it can spasm uncontrollably.
Witches who are not magi have more trouble controlling their power than those who are. If the GM compels your power-associated Character Aspect, you must pay two fate points to refuse him. On the other hand, you gain two fate points if you don’t.
In a Nutshell
AP Cost: 2 Advantage Points
Racial Aspect: Blood Before Water
Specialty Aspect: The Witch's Teat (Persuasion)
Affinity Ability: +1 rank in Thaumaturgy
Power Source: Family/Coven Name
You died, but you didn’t stay that way. Another vampire may have been the one to kill you…or the one to find you. Either way, you’re back, you’re room temperature, and you’re really, really thirsty.
Vampires are human beings who have died. Before their souls passed on, their cooling corpses were reanimated by a demon called the Shadow. The Shadow often behaves like a wild animal, becoming frightened, wrathful, or ravenous at the slightest provocation. Most masters watch over their spawn for a few days—ensuring that the nascent vampire won’t represent a nuisance—before moving on. Some masters stick around to educate their spawn. Others loose their spawn on the world, like a plague, upon a small town or village.
The most successful vampires connect with a community and forge healthy reputations among their kin. Vampires have formed regional political structures spanning the globe and protect the stability of these communities with strict rules and violent enforcement.
Varied. Myths about vampires stretch far and wide, and vampires are highly diverse. Some even say that new lines of vampires have arisen—these vampires shimmer in sunlight and have skin as hard as diamond. Discuss your character with your GM to determine what abilities are most likely for a vampire of your age and lineage.
Spawning a new Vampire
Creating a vampire is an intentional act. Whether the victim starts out dead or moribund depends on the vampire’s family. What matters most is that the victim (or the victim’s body) must be forced to drink a sizeable amount of his Sire’s blood (a mouthful often suffices). If the vampire family requires its victims to be alive to change, then the victim must die with the Sire’s blood in his system. If the vampire family requires its victims to be dead, then the Sire’s blood must suffuse the corpse’s body within a number of days equal to the vampire’s Maranamaya.
Often the new Spawn is buried or entombed as any respected corpse would be. If the rite was enacted properly, come next sunset, the Spawn will rise as a freshly turned vampire, having gained all the perks and anathemas bestowed by his Sire’s family bloodline.
Vampires are not made en masse. In this exchange, the Sire gives a portion of his Shadow to his Spawn, breaking off a fragment of his animating demon to instill life into a thing that is dead. The more Sires give of themselves in this way, the quicker their own power wanes. The cost of creating a Spawn can take decades to recuperate. In game terms, it costs 1 rank of Manaramaya to create a new vampire.
Assuming the Spawn awakens the next night, a permanent bond is formed between himself and his Sire. This ethereal thread that ties them together instills a hierarchy between them both. The Sire is more easily able to use her Shadow to influence her Spawn, and the Spawn finds it more difficult to resist. Furthermore, each are able to empathetically feel the other’s strong emotions over any distance. In this way, they would know if the other was in the throes of genuine passion, enraged, wounded, or suddenly destroyed.
In a Nutshell
AP Cost: 5 Advantage Points
Racial Aspect: Shadow Spawn of ____
Specialty Aspect: The Shadow Hungers (Willpower)
Affinity Ability: +1 rank in Maranamaya
Power Source: The Shadow
Undead (3 AP; Lifeless, Resilient, Limitation): Your body is effectively dead. The only thing that keeps your soul bound to your corpse—that keeps you from simply dying and rotting away—is your Shadow. You could have the appearance and stench of death; or you could look and feel 100% alive, but you know that you’re not. Either way, you do not age, you do not need to sleep, you are immune to the effects of vacuum, poisons, disease, and drugs; and the Severe Consequence is not persistent for you. You must still drink blood to feed your Shadow, ergo the Limitation to this Power.
Custom Stress Track: Hunger (2 AP): To heal yourself and to fuel any Shadow magic you have learned, you drain your reserves of vital blood and find yourself struggling with Hunger. Your Hunger stress track is equal to your Maranamaya + Endurance (modified by Willpower).
When you roll to activate many of your Shadow powers, the stress you suffer is taken on your Hunger Stress Track. These endeavors consume the blood in your system, leaving you hungrier. As you feed, you reduce the Consequences of this Hunger.
As you deplete your blood, your Hunger Stress Traack takes the following Consequences; Minor: Hungry, Major: Famished, Severe: Starving, Extreme(P): Ravenous, and Defeated(P): Starved.
As you grow in hunger you find it difficult to concentrate or keep your Shadow under conscious control. Your various states of Hunger can be compelled by your Shadow to make unlife harder on you (and on those around you). If you become Defeated by your Hunger Stress Track ("Starved"), but have not been physically Defeated, you cannot move or act until someone brings you blood and forces it into you.
Blood Drain (2 AP, Leach, Deadly Leach, Limitations): When you feed you “Leach” the life from your prey and draw it into yourself. To feed you must first grapple your target, then bite your victim with your fangs (Maranamaya, defended with Endurance, WR +2). The blood drained in this way applies to your Hunger Stress Track, allowing you to downgrade the Consequences of starvation.
When using Blood Drain on another vampire, you first deal stress to his Hunger Stress Track, then begin dealing physical stress only after your victim has become "Starved."
When using Blood Drain on a living supernatural being, you deal the first point of stress to his Supernatural Stress Track, the second to his Physical Stress Track, then back and forth until one or both stress tracks is depleted. The vampire also gains the Aspect Intoxicated by Magic.
Sanguine Vitality (1 AP, Heal, Strenuous, Self-Healing Only, Limb-Regrowth, Limitation: Unhealing Burns): Vampires do not naturally heal physical wounds. However, the same blood that sustains you also heals your wounds. Your body is effectively locked in stasis, constantly trying to revert to the shape it was in the night the Shadow entered you. Though resilient, when you do manage to become wounded, you are able to heal yourself by focusing on the blood inside you (Activation Difficulty 4); thus downgrading a Consequence by one step. When your wounds are grievous enough to become Persistent, the Shadow will attempt to heal you, risking starvation to stave off Defeat.
The blood that heals you is also potent enough to allow you to regrow lost limbs. Once the Consequence associated with the loss of the limb has been healed, the limb is restored.
Your physiology suffers from a mysterious anomaly: burns from fire and sunlight are much more difficult to heal than other wounds. The activation difficulty of Sanguine Vitality is increased by +4 when attempting to heal wounds from these sources.
Weaknesses (+5 AP): All vampires suffer from the following Weaknesses.
Curse of Undeath: Vampires do not heal physical wounds naturally. Such Consequences never downgrade, but instead require the use of the Sanguine Vitality Power.
Curse of the Sun: Every sunrise is an affront to the Shadow. Whether you are in a family of vampires who can walk by day or who burns by sunlight, every sunrise you suffer an attack against your Hunger Stress Track with a WR of +4. In addition, the sun’s gaze is a constant source of agony for the Shadow. If you choose to stay awake during this time, you suffer a –3 penalty on all rolls made during the day time.
Whether you were dragged away by some daemon or spirit, kicking and screaming, or you wandered through a gimlet into another world, that world changed you. You spent time in a pneumatic world—a world made entirely of ephemera and magic—and your body and soul are no longer fully human. You are a little bit human and a little bit magic itself.
Verhext were humans once, but they spent some time in one of infinite pneumatic worlds. You may have served a god, or you may have wandered a desert for years without food or drink before circling back into the physical world. When you came back, magic was inside of you. You don’t just have supernatural powers, you are supernatural.
Some hunters capture verhext for their parts—a finger, a nose, an eye, ground bones—which can be powerful components to add to any spell. Vampires are known to sometimes feed on verhext to temporarily steal their power. This makes verhext highly prized by people with expensive tastes.
Aspects & Powers
Every verhext has been forever changed. Take the A Little Inhuman aspect. Even if you look perfectly human, even if you're magically disguised, there's something inhuman about you that others can sense, especially animals, children, and the mentally ill.
The possibilities for variety among verhext are endless. Verhext can have been stuck in any one of infinite worlds, and their powers are just as varied. Discuss your character with your GM to determine what abilities are most likely for your verhext.
One night—underneath the full moon—you were bitten or scratched by a wolf-like monster. You probably went to the hospital, got a rabies treatment, and went back home. A month later, you woke up in your front yard, naked and covered in blood. For three nights out of the month, you hunt. The rest of the time, you live out your life as best you can.
As with vampires, the werewolf "curse" is a daemon that spreads when a werewolf bites or scratches a human. Among humans, only verhext and vampires are immune to the curse. The daemon is a creature of primal fury. It hunts for the thrill of it, and it favors humans as prey. Fortunately for humans who become infected, the daemon hibernates for most of the month.
Werewolves cannot change form on purpose without a magus with control over daemons or a god with whom the werewolf makes a pact. In most cases, you may take Curse of the Moon as a character aspect. The GM will compel it at night during the full moon. During this time, your character is an out-of-control hunting, maiming, and killing machine.
While the daemon slumbers, its magic protects the human to which it is bound by granting her Metro Class Regeneration (p. 170) and Metro Class Super Strength (p. 171).
Some magi can manipulate the werewolf daemon. Only the strongest magi can pacify the daemon, but caeleal and undine magi can cause the daemon to awaken—causing a transformation to occur outside of the full moon—and direct it to attack or hunt a specific individual.
Pacts with gods change everything.
Control (Magi only)
Power Aspect: Magus
Base AP Cost: 5 or 7 (Base 5 or 7; -2 Rote Reliant; +2 Summon from Nothing)
Activation Difficulty: Base Difficulty 2 + Control Modifiers
Activation Time: Simple Action (Increase activation difficulty by +4 for Free Action, or by +6 to activate as a free action on another's turn)
Power Source: The Apeiron
Affinity Ability: Eidologia
Through magical training and meditation, you are able to craft eidolons. This allows you to effect your will upon some area of the material world. It might be a specific type of energy or matter (such as fire, gravity, light, sound, earth, or metal), slightly more abstract concepts like darkness or the weather, or broad-ranging concepts like kinetic energy, the mind, matter, space, or time. The base AP cost of this Power depends on how prevalent the thing that you control is, which is referred to as your "domain." The table below provides some examples of domains and costs.
|AP Cost||Sample Domains|
|5||Fire, Energy, Air, Metal, Computers, the Weather, etc.|
|7||Kinetic Energy, Matter, the Mind, Space, Time, etc.|
When you use Control, you must first roll for activation. The base difficulty is equal to 2, and the final activation difficulty is set by adding any modifiers you choose to the base difficulty.
You may elect to increase the activation difficulty of this Power in exchange for more potent effects. Just remember that the higher the difficulty, the more stress you are likely to take. Also, if you fail to meet the base difficulty on an activation roll (the difficulty before any increases are added), not only do you suffer the stress you would normally suffer, but your attempt to use your Control is actually disrupted, and you can't use it this round.
For example, let's say you want to increase the activation difficulty to 6 in exchange for a more powerful effect.
If you roll an 8, you activate your Control and suffer no stress.
If you roll a 4, you can still use your Control but suffer 2 points of stress.
If you roll a 1, you suffer 5 points of stress and your Control fails to activate altogether.
You are able to summon the subject of your Control from nothing, such as creating fire when no fire was previously present.
Common Control Activation Modifiers
|Usage||Activation Difficulty Modifier|
|Base Activation||6 – TL (4) = Difficulty 2|
|Free Action Activation||+4|
|Free Action on Another's Turn||+6|
|Basic Attack||Difficulty 2 + WR (or ExR)|
|Area of Effect||+4|
|Ignore Armor||+ TL (4)|
|Defense||Difficulty 2 + 2 per +1 to Affinity Ability|
|Protection||1 per 1 AR|
|Extended Duration||1 FP|
|Block||Difficulty 2 + 2 per +1 to set Potency|
|Extended Coverage||+2 per person, +3 for zone|
|Extended Duration||1 FP|
|Perform Maneuver||Difficulty 2 + 2 or more|
|Reliable Maneuver||+2 per +1 to place Aspect|
|Lasting Aspect||+2 per time increment over "a Round"|
|Expansive Aspect||+ Size of affected area|
|Create||Difficulty 2 + Size (×2) + TL|
|Create Something from Nothing||As Create +2|
|Lasting Creation||+2 per time increment over "Scene"|
|Create Minion||+2 (+4 for standard, +7 for greater)|
|Emulate Other Power||(Total AP value of Power cannot exceed Eidologia)|
|Emulate Power with Activation Difficulty||Difficulty 2 + Normal Activation Difficulty|
|Emulate Power with FP Cost||Difficulty 2 + 4|
|Emulate Power with No Cost||Difficulty 2 + Powers AP Cost (×2)|
|Focused Control||1 FP per roll|
|Ritual Control||1 FP|
|Time Spent Performing Ritual||+2 per hour (or 10 minutes if Eidologia is 3 or higher; max bonus equals Eidologia)|
|Sacrifice||+3 for Major Consequence, +6 for Severe, +9 for Extreme, and +12 for Defeated|
|Quality Components||1 FP, bonus equal to Cost; fail to meet Cost and FP is wasted|
Depending on your domain and your surroundings, you may be able to use your control over your domain to make attacks. For example, you might use your control over fire to turn a cigarette lighter into a flame thrower, or control of the mind to unleash a devastating psychic barrage.
To resolve any attack using your domain, you must first determine what type of attack you are performing (physical or mental). Then decide on the attack's Weapon Rating. The WR is then added to the activation difficulty to use Control.
Once activated, roll your Eidologia to attack. Your target may defend with whichever Ability seems most appropriate. Generally Agility is used to defend against solid objects or bursts of energy, Perception is used to defend against high-velocity projectiles, Endurance is used to fight off direct assaults on the body such as disease, poison, radiation, etc., and Willpower is used to resist attacks against the mind.
An attack comes and goes in an instant, requiring a simple action to both activate Control and make the attack roll.
Ranged: Ranged attacks generally have a range rating equal to your Eidologia, and increase the activation of this use of Control by +2.
Area of Effect: You may elect to attack everyone inside a zone instead of a single target. When doing so, increase the activation difficulty of this use of Control by +4. In addition, instead of adding a Weapon Rating, you ad an Explosive Rating. As with a Weapon Rating, you add your Explosive Rating to the activation difficulty to use Control in this manner.
Persistent Attack: By increasing the activation difficulty by +4, your attack deals damage over time, such as with a slow-burning acid. If you hit an opponent with your attack and he suffers stress, each additional round he suffers an amount of stress equal to the amount he suffered on the previous round –3. One the amount of stress he suffers drops to 0, the attack has ended.
So if your opponent suffers 7 points of stress with the initial attack, he'd suffer 4 the next round, then 1, then 0.
Ignore Armor: If you attack using Control in such a way that renders your target's Armor Rating useless (such as a mental attack), increase the activation difficulty of this use of Control by an amount equal to the setting's Tech Level. If your setting uses multiple TL, use the highest.
Often times your use of Control may allow you to roll your Eidologia to defend instead of one of your mundane Abilities. For example, you may be able to divert incoming projectiles with a current of air (substitute your Eidologia instead of dodging with Agility), or disrupt a telepathic control spell with your own mastery of mind magic (substitute Eidologia for Willpower).
To do this, you must roll to activate your Control. This is a free action, and you use your base difficulty. Once activated, you may use your Eidologia instead of your normal Ability for a single defensive roll that turn.
Also, for every +2 by which you elect to increase your activation difficulty, your Eidologia is considered +1 higher for the purposes of that defense roll.
Protection: By rolling against your base activation difficulty, you may create some sort of armor or shield for yourself. This protection lasts for one round and provides an Armor Rating equal to your TL. You may further increase the AR by +1 for every +1 by which you increase the activation difficulty of this use of Control.
This is any attempt to hamper or stop another action from happening with Control. It works very much like a normal block action (Strands of Fate p. 260), but uses your Eidologia.
To do this, you must roll to activate your Control. This is a free action, and you use your base difficulty. Once activated, roll your EIdologia to determine the Potency of the block. For every +2 by which you increase the activation difficulty, you gain a +1 bonus on your roll to set the block's Potency.
Once activated, you can hold a block action as long as you concentrate on holding it. Concentrating on a block is a supplemental action that requires you to suffer a –2 penalty on all other actions. (Strands of Fate p. 261).
A block action will only last for a round unless held with concentration.
Extended Coverage: By increasing the activation difficulty by +2, you can extend your block to cover another person instead of yourself. For every additional +2 added, your block covers another person (which can include yourself).
Your block may cover an entire zone by increasing the activation difficulty by +3.
Extended Duration: You may change the duration of your block or protection to last the duration of the scene by spending a FP.
Add +2 to the activation difficulty whenever you want to use your control of your domain to place an Aspect on yourself, a target, or a zone. Though for especially difficult or complex Maneuvers, the GM may add more penalties.
These Aspects are generally temporary and last either for a single round or until the victim can remove them.
When performing a Maneuver that requires a contested roll, once Control has been activated, roll your Eidologia against their relevant Ability.
Reliable Maneuver: You may choose to increase the activation difficulty for this use of Control by an additional +2 to gain a +1 on Eidologia rolls to perform this Maneuver. For example, let's say you want to use your control of air to blow against the oncoming ogre in an attempt to place a Staggered Aspect on him. You'd roll your Eidologia against his Endurance. If you choose to increase the activation difficulty of this use of Control by an additional +4, you'd gain a +2 on your roll to place the Aspect.
Lasting Aspect: For Maneuvers that place more long-lasting Aspects, increase the activation difficulty by +2 for every time increment greater than "a Round."
Expansive Aspect: For Maneuvers that are not directly related to combat, such as controlling the weather to create an Aspect of Thunderstorm, the GM might allow you to cover multiple zones or an entire city. Such a Maneuver should increase the activation difficulty equal to the Size of the area you intend to affect.
Depending on your chosen domain, you may cause energy or matter to shape itself into a new shape or configuration you desire.
When doing this, the activation difficulty is increased depending on what it is that you are bringing into being.
Create: You may shape raw substances into finished objects which maintain their new shape for the duration of this use of Control. The activation difficulty is increased by an amount equal to the Size (×2) + TL of the object created or amount of material being shaped, and you need to have enough of the appropriate materials on hand to work with. Simple shapes are considered to have a Tech-Level of 0.
So if you wanted to turn a pile of destroyed cars into a new car, the activation difficulty would be increased by +8 [TL 4 + Size 2 (×2) = 8], and it would last until the end of the scene unless the activation difficulty was further increased to extend the duration.
For more complex creations, such as Power Items and creature summoning, you'll need to emulate the Craft Power Item or Summon Creature Power.
Create Something from Nothing: If you have the capability to create something from nothing, increase the activation cost by +2 when doing so.
Lasting Creation: Created objects only last until the end of the scene before crumbling back into their original form or dissipating. For every +2 you choose to add to the activation difficulty of this Power, increase the duration of your creation by one time increment.
Create Minion: You animate raw materials, causing them to take the form of a creature capable of performing actions for you. You must have enough matter on hand to create the minion, and the minion has an Aspect that describes its make-up and shape, such as Earthen Hound or Man of Fire.
The activation difficulty for creating a Minion is equal to the Base activation Cost +2.
The minion has the stats of a lesser spirit of a type based on the substance you can control. It is not an actual spirit, however, being instead a mindless automaton fashioned from the base matter or energy you control (see Strands of Fate p. 426 for more on the stats for these spirits).
The creature can take a number of Consequences equal to your Eidologia (maximum 4) before being destroyed.
By increasing the activation difficulty of this power by +4, your minion instead uses the stats of a standard spirit. For +7, it can use the stats of a greater spirit.
To create some other type of minion, use Control to emulate the Summon Creature Power.
Emulate Other Power
Depending on your chosen domain, you may be able to perform acts that very closely resemble another Power. For example, if you can the fabric of reality itself, you may be able to grow claws (Body Weaponry) or see distant locations (Clairvoyance).
When emulating another Power, use the following guidelines:
Cost Limitation: The total AP cost of the Power to be emulated may not be higher than your Eidologia. For example, if your Eidologia is 4, the total AP cost of the Power you wish to emulate (including any Modifiers or Meta-Powers you may add to it), must be no greater than 4.
Purchase: When emulating a Power you decide on all the factors of that power as if you were purchasing it with Advantage Points. You may select any Modifiers or Meta-Powers, but the cost of the Power may never be reduced by more than half (after Modifiers have been added, round down), or to less than 1. Also, you may not select any Modifiers or Meta-Powers that reduce the cost of the Power without actually impacting your ability to use it. The GM, as usual, has final say over what Modifiers and Meta-Powers you may apply.
Limits of Emulation: You may not emulate a Power if doing so would provide a better result than if you simply used Control. For example, you may not emulate Ranged Power Attack instead of simply making an attack with Control, or Armor instead of creating Protection.
Activation Difficulty: The activation difficulty is equal to the normal activation difficulty of the Power to be emulated, plus the base difficulty of Control. So if your Control has a base difficulty of 2, and you wanted to emulate Astral Doorway (which has an activation difficulty of 10), the activation difficulty for this use of Control would be 12. If the Power to be emulated activates with the expenditure of a FP, the Power is instead considered to have an activation difficulty of 4. If the Power does not require a roll or FP to activate, add the Power's AP cost (×2) to Control's base activation difficulty to get the final activation difficulty.
Affinity: Regardless of the Power that is emulated, it uses Eidologia and the Apeiron as its Affinity and Power Source, respectively.
Duration: The duration of an emulated power is the same as it normally is for that Power. If the Power normally doesn't have a limited duration, it has a duration of "Scene" when emulated. This may be changed to a whole day with the expenditure of a FP, but only for Powers that do not normally have a duration.
You may spend a FP and elect to spend additional rounds drawing in energy, shaping your effect, fine tuning your creation, etc. When doing this, you effectively turn your activation roll into a short extended action. But if you stop early or are distracted, you may release a backlash.
During the first round, state your intended effect and set the activation difficulty by defining the parameters of this usage of Control. Now, as a simple action, spend a FP and roll for activation. If you fail to meet the activation difficulty, you do not suffer stress. However, you also do not activate your Power.
On the following round you may spend another FP and roll to activate again, adding the result to that of the previous round in hopes of meeting the activation difficulty. Once the activation difficulty is met, your Power is activated.
Thus, by spending additional FP, you may continue to focus and build up your effect over multiple rounds. However, once the difficulty is set, it cannot be changed. If you fail to pay the FP cost or do not take the time to make an activation roll, you immediately lose control and suffer a "backlash."
Backlash: If you fail to take the simple action to continue focusing on your Control effect, fail to pay the FP, or get distracted, you suffer an amount of stress equal to the difference between your accu+mulated total and the difficulty you have set. This is called backlash.
The stress suffered should be relative to the effect you intended. So if you were drawing in enough power to unleash a massive fireball, the stress you suffer comes from either an explosion of fire centered on you or the stress of containing it. If you were attempting some complex mental manipulation, it may backlash as an instant and terrible headache.
If you are attacked while focusing, you must make a Willpower roll to avoid losing control. The difficulty is equal to the amount of stress you suffered. If you fail, it's as if you refused to pay the FP to focus on your Control that round, forcing you to suffer a backlash.
Other things may distract you as well, such as a loud noise or the sudden appearance of a hated foe. In such cases, the GM may call for a Willpower roll and set an appropriate difficulty.
Once you have determined that a backlash is about to occur, you have a few options.
By spending a FP, you may choose to release some of that stress into the world around you instead of taking it all on yourself. You must suffer at least half (round up) the total amount of stress yourself. However, you may unleash the rest as an attack on everyone in the zone you occupy, enemies and friends. This attack is resolved as an attack with your Eidologia plus a bonus equal to the amount of stress you chose not to absorb.
So if a particular focused use of Control had a difficulty of 16, and you failed to pay the FP after having only accumulated an activation total of 5, you would suffer a backlash of 11 points of stress. You may choose to suffer all 11 points yourself, or spend a FP and only take 6 stress. The other 5 stress is transformed into an attack against everyone in the zone you occupy. This attack is resolved as an attack with your Eidologia, with a +5 bonus.
By taking the time and effort to carefully prepare a use of control over several minutes or hours, you can perform more powerful effects with no chance of backlash. And you need only spend one FP instead of one per roll. This usually takes the form of meditation, sacrifices, burning incense, etc.
The more time you spend, the more powerful the effect. For every hour spent performing the ritual, add a +2 bonus to your activation roll. If your Eidologia is greater than 3, you instead gain a +1 every 10 minutes. No matter how much time you spend, however, the maximum bonus allowed is equal to your Eidologia.
Sacrifice can be an important part of any ritual. By inflicting Consequences on yourself or others, you can gain a bonus on your activation roll. The bonus granted is +3 for Major, +6 for Severe(P), +9 for Extreme(P), and +12 for Defeated(P) .The Defeated result requires the death of the participant, his life spent to power the ritual.
Quality ritual components can help direct energies and your focus. You may spend a FP and determine a Cost for your ritual components. If you then purchase the components at that Cost, you gain a bonus on your activation roll equal to the Cost of the components. If you fail to make the purchase, you do not gain a bonus, and your FP was wasted.
When you take the Control Power you should sit down and work up several different uses of Control that you think you might want to use. Take the time to think things through ahead of time so you don't ttake up too much precious game time trying to piece together how you want to use your Control on the fly.
You can purchase these pre-prepared uses of Control as Rotes. Rotes represent a very specific use of Control that your character uses on a regular basis, sort of a signature effect that he has become especially good at.
This is a pretty simple process .Just work out the details of that use of Control ahead of time, defining the specifics of the Rote.
When you first purchase Control, you gain a number of free Rotes equal to your Eidologia. Additional Rotes cost 5 XP each. A magus's use of Control is reliant on the use of rotes. Rotes do not grant you a bonus on activation rolls, and you suffer a -2 penalty on any use of Control that you do not have a Rote for. In addition, you also risk physical stress (see above).
+0 (Effortless): The total activation difficulty of this Power is reduced by –4. However, when attempting to activate this Power, you must also spend a FP. If you fail, the Power fails to activate and you've wasted a FP.
–1 (Inability to Focus): You may not spend additional rounds to focus on a use of Control.
–1 (No Rituals): You may not utilize the ritual option of Control.
–3 (Rote Dependent; replaces Rote Reliant if chosen): Rotes to not grant you a bonus on your activation roll, and you cannot use Control unless you are using a rote. You may not also take the Rote Reliant Modifier.
Focus (Magi & Witches generally)
Base AP Cost: 1
You have some item, or can perform some action, that boosts the effectiveness of one of your Powers. When you purchase this Meta-Power, select the other Power and decide on what sort of item or action is required.
The item must be a unique item that is not easily replaced, such as a specially carved wand or a hard to obtain substance such as a vial of mercury. If you are required to perform an action, the action should require you to spend one turn performing that action prior to using the associated Power. Such actions include chanting, dancing, performing a kata, drawing a circle on the ground, etc.
Once you have selected the affected Power and item/action, choose one of the following benefits. You may still use the associated Power without access to your focus item or without performing your focus action, but you do not gain the selected benefit.
You gain a +2 on activation rolls.
You gain a +1 on attack rolls.
Your Affinity Ability is considered +1 higher.
The Power's WR or provided AR is increased by +2.
You may invoke the Power's Power Aspect once per scene for free.
Ritual Power (any character)
Sample Power Aspects: Street Magic, Magical Ceremony, Psionic Meditation, High Priest of the Horn, Technomancy
Base AP Cost: See below
Activation: None, though you must still activate the Power you have taken as a ritual when it is used
Power Source: The magic that permeates the physical world
Affinity Ability: The spell's Potency rating (modified by the highest participant's Willpower)
This Power grants you cheap access to a number of other Powers. To use those powers you must spend an extended period of time in meditation, performing strange rites, or some other time consuming activity relevant to the Power Aspect chosen to go with this Power.
For every AP spent on this Power, you gain 5 Ritual points. These Ritual points are used to learn different Powers as Rituals. Powers purchased with Ritual points may only be used as a Ritual, and the cost to learn them is equal to their normal AP cost in Ritual points.
When you learn a Power as a Ritual, you must make all the same decisions you would normally make when first learning that Power. For example, if you wanted to be able to transform yourself into a wolf or a bird, you'd still need to purchase the Morph Power as a ritual twice, once for each form. Spells were initially designed with a purpose in mind, and this purpose cannot be changed by the ritual participant. You may also select any modifiers you wish, as well as accompanying Meta-Powers.
Extended Action Activation: To activate a Ritual Power, you roll the spell's Potency rating, modified by the highest Willpower rank among the ritual participants, once per hour. Spells are as powerful as they were designed to be, but a weak-minded fool is going to be worse at casting a spell than a determined mother trying to exorcise a demon from her son. Once you reach the target difficulty, you effectively (if only temporarily) know that Power as if you had purchased it with AP. The target difficulty is equal to the Advantage Point cost of the Power × 2, with a minimum difficulty of 4.
Once the ritual is complete, and you know the Power, you may activate the Power normally. Any rolls requiring you to roll Affinity use the Potency rating of the spell instead, modified by the Willpower of the character activating the Power.
You must use the Power in the same scene in which the Ritual is complete. Failure to do so means the Ritual fails and you lose knowledge of that Power. You also suffer an amount of stress (physical or mental, your choice) equal to the AP cost of that Power × 3.
You may only activate a Power once per casting of the ritual and Powers abide by their standard duration. However, Powers with a permanent duration add +4 to the activation difficulty and end within 8 hours. You may continue to spend one FP every 8 hours to prolong the duration an additional 8 hours.
Empowering Ritual: In addition to granting you access to a Power at a cheaper cost, you may also use some Ritual to make the Power more potent. By spending a FP, you may continue "casting" a ritual even after you have met the activation difficulty. You may make a number of rolls equal to the Potency rating of the spell, each roll taking the same amount of time as the previous rolls.
The total result of these additional rolls (which cannot exceed the Potency rating of the spell) is added as a bonus on the first Affinity roll you make when using the Ritual Power.
Ceremony and Sacrifice: Similar to the way Edge grants a bonus in Mental conflict for good descriptions and roleplaying, you may add bonuses to your Ritual rolls for doing the same.
Usually rated from +1 to +5, the GM may grant this bonus if the player describes in detail what actions he performs and why he performs them, or if he has to go to great lengths to find and perform a suitable sacrifice.
This bonus may be applied to any single roll associated with this Power, but once used, it is gone.
+1 (Master of Ceremonies): Your effective spell Potency is considered two ranks higher for the purposes of casting Rituals and activating Ritual Powers.
+1 Ritual Point (Delayed Power): You may purchase a Power for one additional Ritual Point. You need not activate the Power gained from this ritual in the scene in which the ritual was completed. Instead, you may hold onto it and use it later. Roll the spell's Potency and consult the time increment table to determine how long you may hold it. The total AP cost of all Powers you hold delayed can never exceed your Willpower (restricted by Endurance) × 4.
+1 Ritual Point (Stable Delay): Requires the Delayed Power Modifier. Any Power you choose to delay is automatically delayed for 24 hours, or until you choose to use it, whichever is first.
+2 Ritual Points (Accelerated Ritual): You may purchase a Power for additional Ritual Points. Each time you do so, the amount of time that must pass between each roll in the extended action to perform the Ritual is reduced by one time increment. This time may not be reduced to less than one minute per roll, however.