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The thing about Primium I can't digest...

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  • Argonot
    started a topic The thing about Primium I can't digest...

    The thing about Primium I can't digest...

    Ok, so, why would a material (any) be "counter-magickal" just because?

    I understand Primium is an alchemically-refined metal, but, following the system presented by the game, in order to make it "counter-magickal", its creator should've had ranks in all 9 spheres (and I wouldn't know how much) to "enchant" it like that.

    Am I missing something? Was it created out of the blue just to give the Technocracy - and some members of the Traditions - an extra tool to fight magic?

  • Mister_Dunpeal
    replied
    Perhaps it approaches counter magick in different ways depending on how its created? And some forms of countermagick may be better than others (situationally or in general.) It may even be you have different qualities and grades (Some are better than others. Perhaps the Technocratic Union has the highest quality stuff, but other factions managed to make cruder versions. Sort of like the difference between really high quality, high end steels and mild/stainless steel, or the difference between working in steel alloys and working in iron.)

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  • 11twiggins
    replied
    Originally posted by Ambrosia View Post
    The Technocracy ( or rather Order Of Reason ) always were the inventors if I recall right, but some Etherites managed to also create some small batches.

    EDIT:
    https://whitewolf.fandom.com/wiki/Primium

    Yeah, Iteration X/The Artificers, some Etherites and...the..Knights Templar?
    I think it's worth remembering that while WoD pretends it doesn't have version changes...

    "Oh so Malkavians USED to have these Disciplines, but then there was this fun social experiment, not clickbait, and it changed their Disciplines, this definitely isn't an edition change-"

    It does. Things change mechanically and lore-wise between editions, retcons happen. IMO in "M20 MTA" there's nothing to suggest that the Knights Templar have ever synthesized it, and there is material to suggest they didn't. M20 outright tells us that the only way to have Primium is to be a Technocrat in good standing. No ifs, no buts, no sidebar on other options, which is unusually strong for M20. M20 also tells us that the methods to create primium are a Technocratic secret, repeatedly states that it's special and unique to the Union.

    I agree with the M20 take since it means you don't have super-mystics running around with primium lining their bones or steampunk mechs or whatever. It's a powerful bonus best handed to Mages who don't think they're Mages and have a greatly reduced list of potential uses of their Spheres in many cases.
    Last edited by 11twiggins; 07-08-2021, 06:05 AM.

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  • Ambrosia
    replied
    The Technocracy ( or rather Order Of Reason ) always were the inventors if I recall right, but some Etherites managed to also create some small batches.

    EDIT:
    https://whitewolf.fandom.com/wiki/Primium

    Yeah, Iteration X/The Artificers, some Etherites and...the..Knights Templar?
    Last edited by Ambrosia; 07-08-2021, 05:55 AM.

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  • 11twiggins
    replied
    Also worth remembering that in M20-land, the Technocracy seem to have invented Primium, and seem to have a monopoly on it. In previous editions other people have refined it but in M20 it seems, from the books I've read, to be Technocracy only. IMO that works just fine.

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  • Heavy Arms
    replied
    Considering how quintenssence expensive Primium is, I'm not sure it really violates the normal rules that much. It costs 1 quint/successes... including 15 successes just to process the stuff before you've actually spent any successes on making any... so it's at least 16 quintessence to make the minimal amount of functional Primium.

    The Technocratic advantage here is really things like Primal Utility giving them access to huge amounts of quintessence that the Traditions can't effectively tap into, and a larger and more unified organizational structure that lets them leverage the group-casting/cult rules effectively to make a lot of Primium at once since that's way more efficient.

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  • LaughingGull
    replied
    Per M20 core book, Anti-magic is expensive in that you have to spend one quintessence per success. Premium does violate the normal rules to some extent, but it's also presented as a faction secret of the technocracy. So it's similar to how Akishiks get access to Do, which violates some of the normal boundaries between an ability and a supernatural power. Frankly, given that nature of Mage, I think every faction should have little tricks that violate the normal rules, but they're presented inconsistently in the source books.

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  • Argonot
    replied
    Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
    While there are good reasons not to rely purely on Prime...
    I just bought a ticket on that boat.

    Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post

    To give an analogy around the different options here:

    Imagine you want to stop someone from writing a paragraph. There are lots of ways you can try to interfere.

    You could try to erase whatever they write either ruining their effort entirely, or at least mucking it up enough that the result isn't complete. But then you need to be using the write tools. If they're writing with a pencil on paper, you need a rubber eraser. If they're using chalk on a blackboard, you need the correct eraser for that. If they're typing up a shared document on the cloud you need access to the shared document to delete as fast as they type. Etc.

    You could also do things to make writing harder in general. You could smack their writing hand. You could turn the lights/power off. You could blare loud music in their ear. This isn't dependent on what medium they're using, because you're messing with them directly, rather than the medium they're writing with.

    The first is basic countermagic, the second is anti-magic.
    Yeah, I get what you mean.

    On the other hand, now I understand the anti-magic nature of Primium is based on that "Prime-only" effect. I think relying that exclusively on Prime (without the influence of the spheres you want to cancel) is too much and that's actually what I couldn't accept about it. I will house-rule it.

    Thank you as usual, Heavy Arms.

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  • Heavy Arms
    replied
    While there are good reasons not to rely purely on Prime, yes.

    To give an analogy around the different options here:

    Imagine you want to stop someone from writing a paragraph. There are lots of ways you can try to interfere.

    You could try to erase whatever they write either ruining their effort entirely, or at least mucking it up enough that the result isn't complete. But then you need to be using the write tools. If they're writing with a pencil on paper, you need a rubber eraser. If they're using chalk on a blackboard, you need the correct eraser for that. If they're typing up a shared document on the cloud you need access to the shared document to delete as fast as they type. Etc.

    You could also do things to make writing harder in general. You could smack their writing hand. You could turn the lights/power off. You could blare loud music in their ear. This isn't dependent on what medium they're using, because you're messing with them directly, rather than the medium they're writing with.

    The first is basic countermagic, the second is anti-magic.

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  • Argonot
    replied
    So...you only need Prime to counter magic (or anti magic, whatever) every other Sphere?

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  • Heavy Arms
    replied
    Prime is capable of a form of countermagic all on its own: anti-magic. Technically, you can attempt anti-magic at Prime 1 (though it's kinda worthless until your Prime is higher). The Parma Magica, which goes back to Ars Magica, is an old Hermetic rote that was about having a shield of quintessence to help you smack down offensive spells cast at you whether you knew them (and could use basic countermagic) or not (and had to rely on things like anti-magic).

    So Primium is just giving a matter pattern an innate anti-magic property, but it uses the basic countermagic rules (because otherwise it wouldn't really be functional).

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  • Argonot
    replied
    I agree with you. That would make Primium something extremely difficult to craft and not your "average Hit Mark coating".

    Although I just realized in order to counter-magick something, you only need a basic rank on the sphere that is being cast against you. Which means you would only need the most basic rank in those 9 spheres (plus the ones you need to create such exotic material) to create that counter-magic shield.

    That makes no sense. Sounds like "I will try to counter-magick that storm of fire you released with Forces 5 with my Forces 1 ability".

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  • Baaldam
    replied
    Originally posted by Argonot View Post
    But according to the Sons of Ether and Iteration X books, you only need Matter 5 and Prime 3 to make Primium. Would Prime 3 be enough to counter-magic anything?

    Honestly, i call that crossbook inconsistency. Personally, i think having ranks in all spheres makes a better fit for someone working in the development/refining/etc of an magic-resistant or defusion material, but pick what makes more sense - or is more convenient from a play-at-the-table perspective - to you as ST. Or debate it with your ST, if you have an interest in the subject as a player.
    Last edited by Baaldam; 07-07-2021, 01:55 AM.

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  • Argonot
    replied
    But according to the Sons of Ether and Iteration X books, you only need Matter 5 and Prime 3 to make Primium. Would Prime 3 be enough to counter-magic anything?

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  • Baaldam
    replied
    Originally posted by Argonot View Post
    Ok, so, why would a material (any) be "counter-magickal" just because?

    I understand Primium is an alchemically-refined metal, but, following the system presented by the game, in order to make it "counter-magickal", its creator should've had ranks in all 9 spheres (and I wouldn't know how much) to "enchant" it like that.

    Am I missing something? Was it created out of the blue just to give the Technocracy - and some members of the Traditions - an extra tool to fight magic?

    The simple requirement "ranks in all 9 spheres" on itself is a pretty good indicator that yeah, it was created for exactly for that, but very much by intent, trial & error.

    Leave a comment:

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