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  • Journey into the Past

    What is stopping Time Adept from journey into the past? He can cast Shifting Sands with extra Reach for a "scene back" without any Paradox risk or problems. He can cast it repeatedly, again and again, going back into the past as far away as he wants. He doesn't lose memory or anything about himself. Disciple can also do that if he finds an extra Reach, for example from a rote. How can anything preventably bad happen in a mage world, if there is always possibility for a Time mage to go back into the past and warn the other mages of the danger? Disciples are not that rare.

  • #2
    Well, a Time Mage can only go so far as the time they've been alive, so that helps mitigate damage. However, the biggest thing stopping time mages from too much time fuckery is other time mages. They themselves have plans, and if they can't get those plans done because some mage refuses to move on with his/her life then they will kindly help you do so; whether that be the two cent solution or tying you down until you figure out that using your time powers isn't healthy and that you aren't going to keep trying to have the perfect life depends on the mage in question.

    Beyond that, Fate can also intervene. You can go back in time so much, but Destiny has a habit of intervening too, so bring up that maybe some things can't be changed. Another thing preventing a mage from just making the world a happy go lucky place is that some problems are just too damn big. Mages aren't a large community when it all comes down to numbers. The sleeper community at large could possibly stop big events from happening, or maybe they couldn't; and that is just ignoring the issue of convincing sleeper communities that the issue is coming, how you know about it, and proving you aren't part of the problem. One person can't save the world, even with time control.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Dark Archon View Post
      What is stopping Time Adept from journey into the past? He can cast Shifting Sands with extra Reach for a "scene back" without any Paradox risk or problems. He can cast it repeatedly, again and again, going back into the past as far away as he wants. He doesn't lose memory or anything about himself. Disciple can also do that if he finds an extra Reach, for example from a rote. How can anything preventably bad happen in a mage world, if there is always possibility for a Time mage to go back into the past and warn the other mages of the danger? Disciples are not that rare.
      Because Shifting Sands doesn't actually work differently from Corridors of Time in terms of being A Time Travel Spell and therefore subject to all the same mechanical concerns, because not all of time is broken into a single-digit number of scenes, because a lot of ways to make a spell work better take extra time and are less effective if you shortcut past that, because not every preventable bad thing happened a single-digit number of scenes ago, because Time is one of ten Arcana and Adeptitude is the highest degree of insight four-fifths of magi can attain without specialist resources, because knowledge of the future does not give you knowledge of who can best change it and how to get in touch with them and make them listen to you, and because Paradox and spell control and the butterfly effect as seen through Time Sight combine poorly with the plan of "go back a scene or three and change thirty seconds of activity with no way to check the intervening time before the spell ends."

      The most secure form of time travel is also the most Reach-intensive, given that it involves at least two Advanced factors and at least one extra Reach from non-factor outlets. This is an involved course of action that may not be high on a given Disciple's list of priorities to use for nonspecific aims.


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      • #4
        Originally posted by Dark Archon View Post
        What is stopping Time Adept from journey into the past? He can cast Shifting Sands with extra Reach for a "scene back" without any Paradox risk or problems. He can cast it repeatedly, again and again, going back into the past as far away as he wants. He doesn't lose memory or anything about himself. Disciple can also do that if he finds an extra Reach, for example from a rote. How can anything preventably bad happen in a mage world, if there is always possibility for a Time mage to go back into the past and warn the other mages of the danger? Disciples are not that rare.

        using a demense to reach as much as you like nothing. The only problem he will have is some other mage who will notice him with time sight dispelling his spell which will make his changes not be lasting.

        Remember you need to wait till the spell catches up with the present to make it lasting, so if you go back 5 years your stuck reliving 5 years over (again and without mind can one really remember everything they did 5 years ago so he doesnt mess up another thing?) hoping that in 5 years time whatever you went back for will change and having 1 spell control slot taken up and hoping no random will dispel it.
        Last edited by totalgit; 08-15-2017, 04:03 AM.

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        • #5
          What does duration do for shifting sands? As far as i can tell it has no relation to how far back you go or stay? You cast it as a instant action, the spell goes off and you are slung back X turns or scenes. The spell has ended though? You dont need it to have a duration to cover the amount of time X do you? (my understanding is that if cast with advanced duration it would recast/send you back another x turns/scenes every gnosis interval?)

          Is it then possible to dispel a shifting sand spell on a mage. The spell has ended, shunted him back in time since there is no spell to dispel? Obv they shine to mage sight?

          Which is different from Corridors of Time in that the duration for that spell is how long you are in the past, if its dispelled you bounce back to the present but not so with shifting sands since it can be cast instantly with a duration of 1 turn but its effects"last" more than 1 turn ?

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          • #6
            Duration covers how long you're back in the past in Shifting Sands as well.

            By the way, the demesne trick won't allow you to travel back further than the existence of the demesne.

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            • #7
              There's a rule about spells not stacking. Whenever two spells has the same effect on the same subject only one of those two spells will take effect, suppressing the other until one of them runs out of duration. So if you cast Shifting Sands to travel back in time one Scene and then cast the spell again, one of those two instances of Shifting Sands will be suppressed and you'll continue to only have travelled one Scene back in time instead of two.


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              • #8
                Originally posted by Mrmdubois View Post
                Duration covers how long you're back in the past in Shifting Sands as well.
                Hmm thats not how it reads it reads more like a teleport into the past. If you cast the spell with a potency of say 5, you get transported back 5 turns. It never says you need to also have a duration of 5 turns, if that was the case i think it would be stated as part of the spell? My understanding is that if used with a reach for instant casting, its a normal instant spell that like teleport moves you through time instead of space and adding a duration will make it reapply it every gnosis. interval. (If duration does count for how long you are in the past too, then its applying double penalties, for potency and duration which is pretty harsh as you will always need equal duration to your potency? How would having an advanced duration of 1 scene work when you only have a potency of 2 to go back 2 turns?)

                Like teleport, once the person has been transported, there is then no spell left to dispel. Which is why once you have cast shifting sands i now think there is nothing left to dispel in the past. The person will stick out via time sight and now just has to relive the time hes gone back?

                If the spell is indeed a instant cast, one and done then you should be able to travel further back that a demense was present, just like teleporting out of a demense with extra reach doesnt mean you need to land in a demense?

                As for stacking, i think one could say that shifting one scene via a spell, is not the same as shifting a different scene with the same spell, so they dont technically stack, to stack one would have to travel back through the same scene more than once? Maybe like if you cast a potency 1 spell to regain 1 willpower, you can cast another potency 1 spell to regain another willpower.
                Last edited by totalgit; 08-15-2017, 10:12 AM.

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                • #9
                  The reason you can't exploit the demesne trick with Shifting Sands is that once the spell's intended result crosses the boundary of the demesne (in this case temporally, I.e. Before it existed) then it can risk Paradox as normal.

                  As for going back with successive castings of Shifting Sands that seems like it would make it as good as Corridors of Time, just slightly more inconvenient, especially if you don't have to worry about Duration.

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                  • #10
                    Duration is an issue. How going back in time works in Mage is that you go back an amount based on potency, stay there for a period based on duration, and when that runs out or you cancel the spell you pop back to the present, skipping over any time in-between.

                    If you set the duration higher than the amount you went back the spell just ends when you catch up.

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                    • #11
                      Yeah, that's how I've always interpreted it anyway.

                      Plus it's clearly the intent that Shifting Sands should not be a way to travel freely backwards as far as you want, it's meant for very brief hops back to fix minute to minute mishaps.

                      Come to think of it you can't use Shifting Sands to go back further than Unchanged no matter how many Reach you can append to it because it doesn't have the Temporal Sympathy option.
                      Last edited by Mrmdubois; 08-15-2017, 10:36 AM.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Elfive View Post
                        Duration is an issue. How going back in time works in Mage is that you go back an amount based on potency, stay there for a period based on duration, and when that runs out or you cancel the spell you pop back to the present, skipping over any time in-between.

                        If you set the duration higher than the amount you went back the spell just ends when you catch up.

                        See that sounds like corridor of time. Which returns you to your previous self so its not really like the time teleport of shifting sands.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by totalgit View Post
                          See that sounds like corridor of time. Which returns you to your previous self so its not really like the time teleport of shifting sands.
                          All time travel returns you to your former self barring the intervention of arch masters or weird irises.

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                          • #14
                            I think the real difference between Shifting Sands and Corridors of Time is that the former only sticks if you catch up. If the duration ends before then you get shunted back to the present as if nothing happened.

                            There are plenty of spells that only actually work if you bump up the non-primary spell factors. They never say it outright.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mrmdubois View Post

                              All time travel returns you to your former self barring the intervention of arch masters or weird irises.
                              Not really, if you use corridors of time to go back to when you were 5 you would appear as your 5 year old self, if you somehow manged to get the reach to go back to when you were 5 using shifting sands you would be your adult self back in the time when you were 5. Now that induces a headache because if you are in a different location than your 5 year old self, does that mean you would have a 5 year old version of yourself somewhere and your adult self at the same time?

                              I dont get the feeling that you return to a earlier self, since you keep wounds etc? You get shot, you rewind time you still have the wound? You wouldnt if you enter your previous self? If you are wounded and use Corridor of Time you dont have that wound when you become your earlier self?
                              Last edited by totalgit; 08-15-2017, 11:01 AM.

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