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  • Need more minor spheres, HELP!

    I could use some help developing more minor spheres for my game and am curious if anyone has anything that they’ve fleshed out (to any degree) and would like to share.

  • #2
    What's the desire to have minor spheres for? They struck me as either niche, abusable, or redundant. Do you have a faction you're rounding out or something? The template for a sphere of fire kind of applies to all the other elemental spheres.

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    • #3
      Thinking up and writing up Minor Spheres is harder than I thought. PhillyCuriosity already mentioned elemental Minor Spheres ; other than these, I thought about :

      Minor Sphere of Blessing - would include beneficial Effects from Mind, Life, Entropy, maybe also from Prime.
      Minor Sphere of Cursing - would include adverse Effects from Mind, Life, Entropy, maybe also from Prime.
      I think those two Minor Spheres need other names than the current ones, to tie each of them to more defined and specified concepts and characterfulness.
      Minor Sphere of Mazes - would include Effects from Matter, Correspondence, and Entropy. This one seems to me very characterful and impressive ; just imagine a Mage introducing herself or himself as one who knows the Minor Sphere of Mazes.
      I thought about Minor Sphere of Pleasure, but currently it seems too narrow to me. Mind and Life equivalent Effects related to pleasure seem not enough for a Minor Sphere. At the same time, I am thinking that maybe the issue in regard to this is actually that ' Pleasure ' gives too little of a definition.
      Last edited by Muad'Dib; 11-03-2018, 09:57 AM.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Muad'Dib View Post
        Thinking up and writing up Minor Spheres is harder than I thought. PhillyCuriosity already mentioned elemental Minor Spheres ; other than these, I thought about :

        Minor Sphere of Blessing - would include beneficial Effects from Mind, Life, Entropy, maybe also from Prime.
        Minor Sphere of Cursing - would include adverse Effects from Mind, Life, Entropy, maybe also from Prime.
        I think those two Minor Spheres need other names than the current ones, to tie each of them to more defined and specified concepts and characterfulness.
        Minor Sphere of Mazes - would include Effects from Matter, Correspondence, and Entropy. This one seems to me very characterful and impressive ; just imagine a Mage introducing herself or himself as one who knows the Minor Sphere of Mazes.
        I thought about Minor Sphere of Pleasure, but currently it seems too narrow to me. Mind and Life equivalent Effects related to pleasure seem not enough for a Minor Sphere. At the same time, I am thinking that maybe the issue in regard to this is actually that ' Pleasure ' gives too little of a definition.
        What are your thoughts for some of the effects that you could perform with the sphere of blessing? Do you have an idea because I was thing about a sphere that word to have similar effects including the power to heal people and relieve all kinds of ailments

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        • #5
          Currently I am considering the following Effects for the Minor Sphere of Blessing, which will probably be expanded after I spend more time re-reading the Sphere Effects and capabilities in M:tA books.

          Level 1 - Sense Well-Being, Sense Hopes, Sense Aspirations.
          Sense Well-Being gives the Mage details in regard to how well the target person feels, and the reasons for it. Sense Hopes is more about short-term and simple needs that are on a person's ; while Sense Aspirations is about long-term and more complex desires and wants.
          Level 2 - Create Impressions and Mental Impulse from Mind Magick if cast with good intentions on another person to produce beneficial results to aid, benefit, or help them in some way. Control Probability from Entropy Magick with the same caveat.
          Level 3 - Heal Other from Life Magick . Affect Predictable Patterns from Entropy Magick with same caveat as the Level 2 Effects. Influence Thoughts from Mind Magick with the same caveat as the Level 2 Effects.
          Level 4 - Alter Consciousness from Mind with the standard caveat for this Minor Sphere. Affect Living Things from Entropy with the standard caveat for this Minor Sphere.
          Level 5 - Affect Thought from Entropy , Control Subconscious from Mind with the standard caveat.

          I think that one important issue to resolve in regard to this Minor Sphere is defining ' good intentions ' , ' beneficial ' and ' cast to aid, benefit, or help ' . Especially in regard to influencing a person's feelings and thoughts.
          It very well might be the case that reconceptualizing and renaming this Minor Sphere will help in regard to this.
          Last edited by Muad'Dib; 11-05-2018, 09:35 AM.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Muad'Dib View Post
            I thought about Minor Sphere of Pleasure, but currently it seems too narrow to me. Mind and Life equivalent Effects related to pleasure seem not enough for a Minor Sphere. At the same time, I am thinking that maybe the issue in regard to this is actually that ' Pleasure ' gives too little of a definition.
            Minor Sphere of Sensations? Pleasure and Pain? Ideal for a CoX .





            English is not my native language, so i apologize for errors in grammar or spelling.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Cadmiumcadamium View Post

              Minor Sphere of Sensations? Pleasure and Pain? Ideal for a CoX .
              I thought about Minor Sphere of Pleasure and Pain as an idea, and it is a very good and workable one ; but it does miss the whole point of making a Minor Sphere focused exclusively on Pleasure . Magick based on the concept of Pleasure and Pain I see as appropriate not only for the Cultists of Ecstasy and the Verbenae, but also for Mages of the Order of Hermes, and of the Society of the Ether. I think that such dualism is appropriate for and compatible with the personal theories and approaches that the Etherites are known for.
              Also, I think there is an interesting question and dilemma here. Assuming three Minor Spheres - Pleasure and Pain, Pleasure, Pain - how to make the latter two have roughly the same number of Effects possible as the first one ? Can this be done at all ? How to represent, through the Effects available, the focus in Magick exclusively on pleasure, or exclusively on pain ?

              In regard to a Minor Sphere focused on just Pleasure, maybe Sensations would be more workable as a concept and a name ; I am thinking about Joy or Happiness as possibilities, as well.

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              • #8
                I just came up with an idea for Infernalist Minor Spheres. That being based on the Nine Circles of Hell, as described by Dante.

                It's something I literally came up with a couple minutes ago, so I'll be giving vague descriptions of purview, built as I think through each Circle.


                Circle 1 - Limbo

                Called "the Deficient Paradise", Infernalists who learn Limbo work to affect the innocence of unbaptized babes, shine with the lesser light of mere reason (rather than heaven's transcendent brilliance), and pillage the wisdom of virtuous pagan philosophers. Taking those good things lost to heaven, and twisting them to the Infernalist's wicked ends. The user can appear - in image and aura - to be more virtuous and innocent than she truly is. She can create and manipulate light. She can boost her intelligence and draw upon knowledge lost to history, even to the extent of using post-cognition. (Pre-cognition is the purview of lower circles). Limbo, being by far the most positive of the Infernal Minor Spheres, can even promote life at its highest levels of mastery, though never in a wholly perfect manner.


                Circle 2 - The Whirlwind

                Home of those who sinned for love and lust, Infernalists who learn Whirlwind master the powers of passion and air. Powerful emotions and feelings - usually love (and lust), though rage, jealousy, and sadness can apply - can be inspired in others, and even exploited in the Infernalist herself. Wind comes under her command as well. At low levels, the Infernalist reads air currents, produces small gusts, and guides the paths of missile weapons. At middling levels, Whirlwind can be used to permit flight, as well as to lend passionate energy to the body, so they move with accelerated time. At the highest level of mastery, the Whirlwind gives the power to summon tornadoes, and to twist hearts into passionate obsession.
                Last edited by Bluecho; 11-12-2018, 12:09 PM.


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                • #9
                  Circle 3 - The Mire

                  A "great storm of putrefaction", the third Circle is the plane of icy downpours and stagnant slush, where the gluttonous wallow, blind, in the results of their own self-indulgence. Infernalists who study the Mire learn to work with elemental water (albeit always prone to pollution), and with the urge - and act - of conspicuous consumption. At low levels, the Infernalist can sense the movement of water, still its flow, or (briefly) inspire it to violent action. They can also inspire hunger, thirst, and the desire for more esoteric pleasures (besides sex; see The Whirlwind). At middling levels, the Infernalist can wrack others with hunger pains and weakness, call localized rains and blinding mist, and safely consume large quantities of matter, regardless of volume or composition. At the highest levels, the Infernalist can direct crashing waves and harsh downpours, and consume the patterns of objects, forces, or creatures for their Quintessence.


                  Circle 4 - The Joust-Ground

                  Where the greedy, the misers, and the spendthrifts spend eternity, hoarders and squanderers of wealth wielding great weights against their chests as blunt bludgeons to joust with. The Infernalist learns from the eternal, mutual antagonism these greedy souls shared for one another, in order to wield powers of wealth, shifting fortune, and raw elemental earth. They can sense the nature and enumeration of stone, soil, and especially metal, and can sense value in any currency (whether in actual currency or in trade goods). They can also sense the twists of fate and fortune, especially when coin is involved. They shape stone, metal, and objects of value, having a special proclivity to hiding and locking away materials, as well as destroying them (to deny them to others). Earthquakes and rockslides are the greatest powers of their earthen arts, along with transmuting creatures (including themselves) into stone or metal (though others might not be animate). On another note, the Infernalist can inspire greed, miserliness, and excess. Mastery confers the power to manipulate markets, lowering or raising spending over large portions of the economy. Some masters of Joust-Ground have even stolen the power that Syndicate reps covet, that allows them to derive (and hoard) Quintessence from Infernal Ventures (to the detriment of their constituent members and employees).


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                  • #10
                    Circle 5 - Styx

                    The river Styx, a swampy, stinking waterway, provides the habitation for the wrathful, whether they be actively quarrelsome or passively embittered. Infernalists who study Styx learn to inspire anger, frustration, bitterness, and hatred. At low levels, Styx can be used to sense hostilities and grudges, and to divine the nature of them. At high levels, the Infernalist can forge in others life-long vendettas and frothing, categorical hate against entire groups of people. Mastery also allows for the inspiring of fury across large groups, whipping up angry mobs or riots. Subtler uses of Styx allow the Infernalist to kill the joy in a person's heart, so they quietly begin to hate the world and everyone in it. As a Circle tied to a river, though, Styx carries another purview: travel. Just as a person may navigate waterways to reach destinations quickly, so too can the Infernalist use Styx to bridge across distances, whether throughout the material world, or across the Gauntlet to locations in the Umbra. Common destinations include the Shadowlands and various kinds of hells, or hell-like realms. This can also be used to facilitate crossings for others, allowing the Infernalist to summon demons, wrathful ghosts, and unclean spirits (banes).


                    Circle 6 - Dis

                    The City of Dis, which surrounds and contains all lower circles in its high stone walls, houses and punishes heretics, who burn eternally in flaming tombs. Heresy can be promoted; twisting ideas and even memes into different, ugly, harmful forms. The Infernalist studying Dis learns to erect powerful wards, and to castigate those kept out...and in. At low levels, the Infernalist can sense and understand barriers of all varieties, and can sever Correspondence connections. They can create steadily more potent wards and bans, barring senses, forces, materials, and entities from crossing. This same experience allows for imprisonment as well, up to and including sequestering things and beings outside normal space and time. An intermediate Dis user can even tighten bindings around a target, summoning magical chains, thorns, or invisible force to constrict them to an injurious degree. The Infernalist may erect shields and strengthen natural barriers, giving them hellish durability. Masters of Dis are known to achieve the power to fold space, creating "barriers" using the very folds of space and location. Certain Infernalists are reported to even be able to turn their defensive ability into a weapon of offense. They forge a magical plane of perfected warded space, with a sharp edge; these "Barrier Blades", by rebuking all other materials at their borders, will never break before their targets do. As such, they can cut anything, or so the legends say.
                    Last edited by Bluecho; 11-12-2018, 12:17 PM.


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                    • #11
                      Shouldn't it be " Demonologist " instead of " Infernalist " ? The word " Infernalist " in WoD has an implication of dealing with the infernal from a disadvantegous position. Otherwise, I think that this word is fitting. It is used in regard to the Infernal Nephandi, as well.

                      I haven't read Dante Alighieri's " Inferno ", but I think these Minor Spheres are very appropriate, and have an excellent and varied spread of Effects.
                      Last edited by Muad'Dib; 11-12-2018, 12:34 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Circle 7 - The Rings

                        Three rings make up the Seventh Circle of Hell, where are punished those guilty of Violence.
                        • Phlegethon, the river of boiling blood, punishes the violent against neighbors; the murderers, war-makers, plunderers, and tyrants. From this, Infernalists learn magic of assault, killing, and domination. It also provides knowledge of manipulating blood, and turning it into weapons.
                        • The Wood of Suicides punishes (what else?) those who committed or attempted suicide; their forms are changed into trees, unable to move or speak unless harmed. From these people who disregarded their lives and health, the Infernalist learns to wield pain and depression. They can inspire malaise, self-harm, and even thoughts of suicide. At the highest mastery, Rings users can force targets to kill themselves, not that they don't also have the ability to induce instant death anyway. High levels also can be used to transform people into trees, while allowing them to retain their faculties (so they can suffer more).
                        • The Plain of Burning Sand punishes blasphemers, usurers, and those who violate nature; Dante defined "violating nature" as "sodomy", but modern Infernalism includes any act that despoils the natural world. Such damned souls suffer on burning sands - obviously - meaning Infernalists draw the power to manipulate elemental fire and heat. A fringe benefit of the Circle is seen in a Rote called "Spiritual Usury": the Infernalist "lends" a quantity of their Quintessence to another person, only to extract that quantity with interest later. A spell Infernalists often employ on desperate people, which usually results in injury as they are taxed beyond what Quintessence they may have possessed at the time.


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Muad'Dib View Post
                          Shouldn't it be " Demonologist " instead of " Infernalist " ? The word " Infernalist " in WoD has an implication of dealing with the infernal from a disadvantegous position. Otherwise, I think that this word is fitting. It is used in regard to the Infernal Nephandi, as well.

                          I haven't read Dante Alighieri's " Inferno ", but I think these Minor Spheres are very appropriate, and have an excellent and varied spread of Effects.
                          No, I mean Infernalist. As in, the people who deal with demons and demonic power. If they were merely a Demonologist, they would be using their regular Spheres, just applied towards particular ends. A Hermetic Demonologist might be summoning and binding demons to make them do his bidding, but he's still using Spirit (or the Path of Summoning/Binding/Warding, or some Minor Sphere or Pillar devoted to such things) just like a normal Hermetic.

                          These Nine Circle Spheres are specifically Infernal - not merely being informed of demons, but actually demonic - that draw upon infernal principles and create fell effects. A major reason for having Minor Spheres is to tailor a mage's power towards their Focus; the same basic premise underpins the medieval Foundation/Pillar system. And the ideas of directly channeling qualities and powers of Hell, for hellish purposes, is baked into the mechanics I'm going for.


                          Edit: Moreover, I would not necessarily agree with the assessment of what makes an Infernalist versus a Demonologist. What makes a Demonologist is that they study demons, and occasionally force them into service or make minor trades (never for souls). Infernalists truck with demons actively and maliciously. Many times they sell their souls - in whole or in part - in return for something, often magical power. But I don't know if it's required to have actually made a deal in order to be an Infernalist in spirit. If you dug a tome of demonic lore out of a library and practiced the rituals and spells contained therein - which involve the sort of blasphemies, atrocities, and degredations sure to damn your soul - you would probably still be an Infernalist. The demons design their spells that way for a reason.
                          Last edited by Bluecho; 11-12-2018, 12:52 PM.


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                          • #14
                            Circle 8 - Malebolge

                            The "evil ditches" in which legions of sinners suffer for Frauds perpetrated in life. From the Panderers, Seducers, and Flatterers, the Infernalist learns to make "friends" and influence people, expanding their natural charm. From the Simoniacs, Barrators, and Counsellors of Fraud, they learn to promote corruption, hide in darkness, and manipulate shadows (how better to hide their crooked deals?). The Sorcerers teach the Infernalist much, include Pre-Cognition and far-seeing, as well as the power to weave illusions. Just as the Hypocrites are weighed down by heavy cloaks, the Infernalist can increase the pull of gravity and stifle movement. The Thieves teach the Infernalist magic for stealing what is not theirs; moreover, as mastery improves, they can mirror the punishment of these larcenous individuals, and shapeshift into various forms, notably that of demons and serpents. With them and the Imposters, the Infernalist can appear to be someone else, and even steal another person's form. The Alchemists and Counterfeiters teach the Infernalist how to change materials to appear as something they aren't, usually with illusions or temporary/surface transmutations that make them seem valuable. The Sowers of Discord show the user how to foment chaos and disarray, even allowing the Infernalist to create internal strife with a few well-chosen words, whispered in the right ear. Finally, the Perjurers teach the Infernalist how to deceive, and to make such deceptions be taken as truth. At the highest levels, a person's very memory can be altered, so they believe a counterfeit reality to the Infernalist's liking.


                            Circle 9 - Cocytus

                            The Ninth Circle stands in opposition to the rest of Hell, by consigning the treacherous to a dismal fate, frozen forever in solid ice. Traitors, betrayers, kinslayers, oathbreakers, and rebels against the crown inform an Infernalists ability to command ice and cold, and to foster rebellion, duplicity, conspiracy, paranoia, and poor hospitality. At low levels, a student of Cocytus can sense conspiracy, betrayal, and bitter cold. They soon learn to freeze materials, bodies, hearts, and minds, and to inspire dissent. Even time can be slowed, and eventually (at high levels) stopped entirely. Even a creature's body can be made to betray it, as the Infernalist inspires malady, cancer, and decrepitude in their targets. Weapons slip and injure their wielders, and shadows, voice, and hands can rebel against their owners at the Infernalist's command. If things get too hairy, the Infernalist can always freeze themself in a solid block of ice, weathering the storm (or hail of bullets), then thawing out and carrying on undamaged. Finally, Cocytus is the lair - and prison - of Satan himself, and his terrible visage and chill beating wings make for a frightful presence. From this, the Infernalist learns to inspire fear - paralyzing terror - as the target's blood metaphorically (and perhaps literally) freezes in their veins.


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                            • #15
                              I have written a rough draft of the Minor Sphere of Pleasure and Pain. I have tried to make it defined and tilted towards pleasure and pain combined and interwoven.
                              For an activity or an event to be one of both pleasure and pain it must have some amount - physical, mental, situational, philosophical, personal - of each of these two phenomena. Is can't be just the trappings or a separate addition - the pleasure and pain must be interwoven or existing in parallel ; I think a good way to put is is that the two phenomena must be in ' honestly comparable amounts ' . I will think about this later and further elaborate on this.

                              The Minor Sphere of Pleasure and Pain

                              Leve 1 -
                              Sense pleasure or pain ( or both ) in regard to persons, locations, and objects, and divine it's source and characteristics.
                              Know how long a given pleasure or pain ( or both ) that the Mage has experienced or observed ( including pleasure and pain that was observed only for part of the time during it occurred ) lasted.
                              Level 2 -
                              Increase or decrease pleasure or pain ; increase or decrease both pleasure and pain ( this is as Mind or Life ) .
                              See pleasure or pain that has occurred in the past or the future ( as Time 2 ) .
                              Fuel conjured Patterns if the Magick is done for the purpose of both pleasure and pain ( in honestly comparable amounts ) ( Prime 2 ) .
                              Can strengthen and stabilize Magick if it is done for the purpose of both pleasure and pain ( Prime 2 ) .
                              Level 3 -
                              Instill or deny pleasure or pain, or both pleasure and pain ( as Mind or Life ) .
                              Direct and alter the sequences of occurrences in events that include both pleasure and pain ( as Entropy 3 ) .
                              Find and perceive a specific pleasure or pain that is happening. ( As Correspondence 3 ; this can't be combined with level 2 of this Minor Sphere to find a pleasure or a pain through the past or the future. Knowledge of standard Time 2 is needed for this, or knowledge of the Minor Sphere of Pleasure and Pain 2 and Correspondence 3. I will try to write later why I think this is justified within the concept and characterfulness of this Minor Sphere. )
                              Level 4 -
                              Transform pleasure into pain and pain into pleasure ( This is comparable to Mind or Life, but it also includes capabilities from Entropy and Prime. ) .
                              Transform objects of pleasure into objects of pain, and objects of pain into objects of pleasure ( Matter 4 ; this is done relative to the outlook on the item(s) of the person who has or will be given the item. ) .
                              Create Periapts for personal use from objects of pleasure or pain, or from objects of pleasure and pain. These Periapts can only store Quintessence gained through the use of this Minor Sphere, or gained through activities that of interwoven and combined pleasure and pain.
                              Gain Quintessence from Wellsprings of combined pleasure and pain ( Prime 4 ) .
                              level 5 -
                              Redirect and shift comprehensions, perceptions, thoughts, feelings, attitudes, actions, and events towards interwoven pleasure and pain ( Entropy 5 ) .
                              Manipulate and change situations, activites, and events of interwoven pleasure and pain ( Entropy 5 ) .
                              Gain Quintessence from activities and events that include both pleasure and pain ( Prime 5 Inspiration ) .

                              I'm planning on expanding and describing this further. I will consider whether some capabilities of Prime or of Time 3 and 4 should be added. Some Rotes are definitely needed. I'm interested in hearing comments or ideas in regard to this Minor Sphere.
                              Last edited by Muad'Dib; 11-28-2018, 08:26 PM.

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