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  • #16
    Originally posted by totalgit View Post


    Using the practice of shielding to blow up the world or let people fly off into space is stupid though.
    You think it's stupid; that doesn't make it stupid.

    Also, if you want to make someone shoot into space you could just as easily (actually, more easily because you're adding acceleration) do it with Forces 2 Ruling (changing the "direction" of gravity with Control Gravity), so it's not even like doing it with shielding is somehow "cheating" the arcana requirements.


    [Because that's not what the practice of shielding does.
    That's not what you think the practice of shielding does.

    Science might tell you something not interacting with gravity can now fly off into space but its a lie and what you end up with is not what science tells you should happen.
    Science says the object will fly off tangential to the direction of rotation of the surface of the Earth until it collides with somethings that prevents its further motion. Again, this can, at the same Arcana rating, be equally accomplished via the practice of Ruling.

    Since normal gravity usually has no harmful effects shielding yourself from gravity wont seem like its done anything, when gravity increases to a point it might harm you then shielding will help.
    Gravity causes all sorts of wear and tear on our bodies. And shielding still also means "prevents interference."

    Yes magic ignores the laws of physics, so it can ignore the idea that "shielding vs X causes Y cos science says it should."
    If you craft the spell to work that way.

    If you cast a Shielding spell against gravity with the intent that it doesn't impact the normal gravity from the planet, then it won't. And that's probably the default imago for most mages; but that doesn't mean a different imago can't exist just because you can't imagine it.


    Mentats - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Mind/Forces) built around being a human computer; Thaumatech Engineers - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Matter/Prime) focusing on the creation of Imbued items and the enhancement of Sleeper technology

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    • #17
      I think its doable to use a Shielding like that, because the spell is not used in a vaccum. A Mastigos that studies psychology is more effective, a Moros that knows engineering and chemistry can do a lot more, an Acanthus that studies narratives and probabilities as well. So it makes sense that an Obrimos that understands physics can similarly enhance their repertoire.

      Once they create such a spell, its fair game for the story. Are they the first to figure it out ? Maybe it allows Forces users to achieve an effect easier than expected, or with a little less control than using a higher practice (such as Control Weather vs Adverse Weather). Perhaps this draws the attention of a Mentor, who wants to encode it into a rote in exchange for a boon. Maybe it starts them down a line of research. Perhaps it becomes their signature spell and others wish to trade or steal the knowledge. Maybe an antagonist sees it and tries to deconstruct it, create a counter or even invent their own approach to the spell.

      Ultimately, anyone with similar Arcana can do it. In other words, as Mystagogues are prone to say: Knowledge is Power. If its an obvious application, make it show up more. If its not, make a plot hook, explore how much the innovation is worth or even create Mysteries that makes them question the principles of physics behind them. If the player went out of their way to be creative, the explanation is reasonably quick to go over and no one else at the table objects, then go with the flow and see what cool places it can take you.


      New experiences are the font of creativity, when seeking inspiration, break your routine.

      The Agathos Kai Sophos, an Acanthus Legacy of strategists (Mind/Time)
      The Szary Strażnik, an Obrimos Legacy of Scholars of the Glyphs of Fate (Fate/Prime)

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      • #18
        Originally posted by proindrakenzol View Post
        Also, if you want to make someone shoot into space you could just as easily (actually, more easily because you're adding acceleration) do it with Forces 2 Ruling (changing the "direction" of gravity with Control Gravity), so it's not even like doing it with shielding is somehow "cheating" the arcana requirements.
        Gonna just pause to point out that the effects of spells affect the things that they affect as delineated by their spell factors and nothing more; even if Control Gravity affected a target rather than an area, it doesn't create Lasting energy that propagates through the environment — the spell's Scale Factor is the limit of its ability to apply its effects and subjects explicitly fall back under the normal sway of gravity once they leave its area of influence. It takes Patterning to use Space to change an individual target's definition of "down" in a way that moves with them and there's little to suggest Forces redirecting the constant push of kinetic energy from gravitational acceleration can manage the same thing with Ruling alone.
        Last edited by Satchel; 12-25-2020, 06:31 PM.


        Resident Lore-Hound
        Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

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        • #19
          I think the fundamental conflict here is between players who want to be able to leverage their out-of-game knowledge of science and engineering as a lever to shift the moon, and players who want the rules of Creative Thaumaturgy to trump the rules of science and create a level playing field among players with different degrees of scientific knowledge. Should Shielding deal merely with protection from harm, or should it enable a mage to block the action of some esoteric physical phenomenon to let an apprentice (or player) with a PhD accomplish a master's feat?

          Which side one takes probably depends more on their educational and professional knowledge than anything inherent in the rules or setting. Like dimes against dollars proindrakenzol is an engineer or similar.

          Some people enjoy a setting where STEM knowledge doesn't provide the same huge life advantage it does in the real world and people can accomplish wonders divorced from science. Others enjoy a setting where they can flex their professional expertise to run circles around those without the same sort of background. I think the rules accomadate both approaches, and it's up to the ST to find the balance that makes the game fun for all the players.
          Last edited by galivet; 12-25-2020, 06:58 PM.

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          • #20
            I am all for letting players create interactions between the symbolically ruled Arcana with the finer laws of nature, provided such a spell is reasonable for the character to think of, because that's an interesting use of the relatively freeform powers available to the PCs. But such spells face higher scrutiny because they're more finicky (see my arguments about why messing with electron repulsion would be a really sucky version of spider climb) while still also having to adhere to the semiotic nature of Awakened magic (which is why I don't think it should be Shielding; but it could be another Practice, including on the same dot level).


            Bloodline: The Stygians
            Ordo Dracul Mysteries: Mystery of Smoke, Revised Mystery of Živa
            Mage The Awakening: Spell Quick Reference (single page and landscape for computer screens)

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            • #21
              It's the "higher scrutiny" part I personally find annoying: either the ST is the biggest physics nerd at the table, or inevitably she's gonna have to pause the action to read a Wikipedia article to try and understand WTF a player's spell should actually do. Well, that or open the door to the players bullshitting her with technobabble. When I'm running Mage I'm not volunteering to earn a Master's degree in physics. Obviously other STs with more of a background and interest in science will have more tolerance for spells that influence the Van der Walls force (or whatever it was).

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              • #22
                Originally posted by galivet View Post
                It's the "higher scrutiny" part I personally find annoying: either the ST is the biggest physics nerd at the table, or inevitably she's gonna have to pause the action to read a Wikipedia article to try and understand WTF a player's spell should actually do. Well, that or open the door to the players bullshitting her with technobabble. When I'm running Mage I'm not volunteering to earn a Master's degree in physics. Obviously other STs with more of a background and interest in science will have more tolerance for spells that influence the Van der Walls force (or whatever it was).
                And I do have a degree in physics, so I am able to adjudicate things like that.

                I don't mind if other STs want to arbitrarily restrict when reality ensues, I just won't play with them; I do mind other users making broad pronouncements without supporting evidence on why things they don't understand are stupid.


                Mentats - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Mind/Forces) built around being a human computer; Thaumatech Engineers - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Matter/Prime) focusing on the creation of Imbued items and the enhancement of Sleeper technology

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                • #23
                  I think "stupid" is too judgemental in the context of a game, but it's definitely possible for a player's advanced physics knowledge to erode the intended power progression built into the game for Matter and Forces in a way that isn't possible for the purely fictional Arcana such as Fate and Spirit. Fate has no equivalent to Z bosons. No one is publishing new papers every year that extend the boundaries of what can be done with Spirit Ruling.

                  I think the important thing is to not let a mage's mystical prowess depend more on Fallen science knowledge than experience points invested in Arcana and Gnosis dots, because at that point you're playing more Mr. Wizard's World than Mage. In the context of Mage, I find absurd the idea that a Sleeper materials science PhD knows some truth about matter that a Master of Matter does not... and every published rote was encoded by some Master. If someone thinks they can use one weird trick they learned in grad school to accomplish with Shielding that which a Master believes requires Weaving, then they're probably deluded. That or playing a Chronical where Libertine Moros and Obrimos newbloods regularly wipe the floor with Seer Masters due to having a fresher knowledge of peer reviewed journal articles.

                  Games, like movies, require a degree of suspension of disbelief on the part of technical experts in order to be entertaining *for a general audience*. I feel that pain too: I have never seen a movie or a game that accurately represents computer hacking (because in real life it's about as dry as nuclear physics). Of course, if your group consists solely of technical experts then you can happily set that aside and go full plaid with the physics trivia thaumaturgy. I'm sure with the right group it's a blast.
                  Last edited by galivet; 12-25-2020, 11:17 PM.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by proindrakenzol View Post

                    And I do have a degree in physics, so I am able to adjudicate things like that.

                    I don't mind if other STs want to arbitrarily restrict when reality ensues, I just won't play with them; I do mind other users making broad pronouncements without supporting evidence on why things they don't understand are stupid.
                    Nice dig, i understand physics. I also understand the practice of shielding. which beats physics with a stick.

                    My evidence is there are no shielding spells that give somebody the ability to fly or wall crawl or cause an explosion or whatever else people try to say it can do because science says so because throwing science at magic wont make a blind bit of difference because magic shits on science and people with science degree's.
                    Last edited by totalgit; 12-26-2020, 04:27 AM.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by totalgit View Post

                      Nice dig, i understand physics. I also understand the practice of shielding. which beats physics with a stick.

                      My evidence is there are no shielding spells that give somebody the ability to fly or wall crawl or cause an explosion or whatever else people try to say it can do because science says so because throwing science at magic wont make a blind bit of difference because magic shits on science and people with science degree's.
                      You clearly don't understand the practice of Shielding, or the work arounds being discussed.

                      First, look at the spell Light Under a Bushel, a Prime Shielding spell in Signs of Sorcery that prevents interference/contamination, rather than protecting against an explicitly harmful thing.

                      Also, under the Protection section of the core book:

                      "These spells usually provide blanket immunity to natural or
                      mundane phenomena"

                      Further, the spells don't grant the ability to fly (I didn't bring up flying in the first place, you did) or wall crawl as the primary effects of the spell (and therefor contained within the imago), but rather as a secondary consequence; this is no different from Ban being able to cause suffocation, it's not part of the imago of the spell, it's instead a secondary consequence of how the spell functions.

                      Finally, "my evidence is nothing" is not a compelling argument, ever.


                      [edit] Again, I understand why people might not want to allow this sort of thing in their game (despite being supported by the rules), but being a, well, total git about how you're definitely 100% right because you say so and everyone else is stupid isn't convincing discourse.
                      Last edited by proindrakenzol; 12-26-2020, 05:58 PM.


                      Mentats - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Mind/Forces) built around being a human computer; Thaumatech Engineers - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Matter/Prime) focusing on the creation of Imbued items and the enhancement of Sleeper technology

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by proindrakenzol View Post

                        You clearly don't understand the practice of Shielding, or the work arounds being discussed.

                        First, look at the spell Light Under a Bushel, a Prime Shielding spell in Signs of Sorcery that prevents interference/contamination, rather than protecting against an explicitly harmful thing.

                        Also, under the Protection section of the core book:

                        "These spells usually provide blanket immunity to natural or
                        mundane phenomena"

                        Further, the spells don't grant the ability to fly (I didn't bring up flying in the first place, you did) or wall crawl as the primary effects of the spell (and therefor contained within the imago), but rather as a secondary consequence; this is no different from Ban being able to cause suffocation, it's not part of the imago of the spell, it's instead a secondary consequence of how the spell functions.

                        Finally, "my evidence is nothing" is not a compelling argument, ever.


                        [edit] Again, I understand why people might not want to allow this sort of thing in their game (despite being supported by the rules), but being a, well, total git about how you're definitely 100% right because you say so and everyone else is stupid isn't convincing discourse.
                        You obviously don't understand. I am saying that even when shielding prevents interference between two things (and I'm cautious that is even mentioned in the books as all i can find is "immunity/protect" from references, perhaps somebody infered noninterference from that) it doesn't result in what science would predict would happen due to that noninterference and that you cant manipulate the imago to cause effects that science says should happen. Nowhere have I said shielding cant cause something to not interact with something, I said when that happens the results are not what science would expect. Science might theorize that when something doesn't interact (again the terms used are blanket immunity/protection from) with gravity it should now be able to walk on walls or not fall when it steps of a cliff, but the first person who shielded themselves from gravity and then fell off a cliff and got hurt should perhaps not trust science as much. Gaining protection or immunity from gravity is not the same as gaining the ability to ignore gravity.

                        You may not have encountered arguments where people try to say you can cause massive explosions by abusing shielding and strong/weak nuclear forces but i have, and if people are allowing a 2 dot practice that offers protection from things the ability to do that then yes i have every right to call it stupid.
                        Last edited by totalgit; 12-26-2020, 07:37 PM.

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                        • #27
                          Interference and contamination don't strike you as manifestations of harm?

                          The word "immunity" also implies protection from harm, the primary meaning being that of protection from disease or infection. That this quote comes from the subsection on protective spells is an important bit of context. The idea that the rules cover in a section on protective magic how to hurt someone as a side effect of shielding them against a phenomenon that is doing them no harm is truly bizarre.

                          I think you're reading something into the rules that you want to be there, bit isn't really.

                          A simpler way to express Shielding may be "reinforces the current state of things." Shielding spells prevent change. Any spell which directly causes a change by disrupting something about the status quo is a bad fit for that Practice.

                          Regarding the Ban spell, I'll note that it's used to shield space, not people. It protects a space from being changed by the ingress of things from outside of that space. I don't think it's a great example to cherry pick regarding using Shielding spells to hurt people. Whether the space affected by a Ban even contains a person is incidental.
                          Last edited by galivet; 12-26-2020, 07:45 PM.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by totalgit View Post

                            You obviously don't understand. I am saying that even when shielding prevents interference between two things (and I'm cautious that is even mentioned in the books as all i can find is "immunity/protect" from references, perhaps somebody infered noninterference from that) it doesn't result in what science would predict would happen due to that noninterference and that you cant manipulate the imago to cause effects that science says should happen. Nowhere have I said shielding cant cause something to not interact with something, I said when that happens the results are not what science would expect. Science might theorize that when something doesn't interact (again the terms used are blanket immunity/protection from) with gravity it should now be able to walk on walls or not fall when it steps of a cliff, but the first person who shielded themselves from gravity and then fell off a cliff and got hurt should perhaps not trust science as much. Gaining protection or immunity from gravity is not the same as gaining the ability to ignore gravity.
                            I do understand. You don't seem to understand I believe you are wrong.

                            You may not have encountered arguments where people try to say you can cause massive explosions by abusing shielding and strong/weak nuclear forces but i have, and if people are allowing a 2 dot practice that offers protection from things the ability to do that then yes i have every right to call it stupid.
                            I have made that argument, because it's a valid one; I've also pointed out why it's not terribly useful (or out of line with other 2-dot spells from other Arcana). You have every right to call it stupid, insofar as you have the right to call anything stupid, but I have the right to say your calling it stupid is, itself, stupid.


                            Mentats - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Mind/Forces) built around being a human computer; Thaumatech Engineers - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Matter/Prime) focusing on the creation of Imbued items and the enhancement of Sleeper technology

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by galivet View Post
                              Interference and contamination don't strike you as manifestations of harm?

                              The word "immunity" also implies protection from harm, the primary meaning being that of protection from disease or infection. That this quote comes from the subsection on protective spells is an important bit of context. The idea that the rules cover in a section on protective magic how to hurt someone as a side effect of shielding them against a phenomenon that is doing them no harm is truly bizarre.

                              I think you're reading something into the rules that you want to be there, bit isn't really.
                              And I think you're reading restrictions into the rules that you want to be there, but aren't.

                              A simpler way to express Shielding may be "reinforces the current state of things." Shielding spells prevent change. Any spell which directly causes a change by disrupting something about the status quo is a bad fit for that Practice.
                              Do you have a page reference for this? Because "maintains the status quo" does not appear anywhere I can see.

                              Regarding the Ban spell, I'll note that it's used to shield space, not people. It protects a space from being changed by the ingress of things from outside of that space. I don't think it's a great example to cherry pick regarding using Shielding spells to hurt people. Whether the space affected by a Ban even contains a person is incidental.
                              Ban isn't even a Shielding spell, but you're making distinctions that I don't think really exist: the point is that what a spell does doesn't preclude secondary effects from occurring, the opposite is true.


                              Mentats - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Mind/Forces) built around being a human computer; Thaumatech Engineers - a 2e Free Council Obrimos Legacy (Matter/Prime) focusing on the creation of Imbued items and the enhancement of Sleeper technology

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                              • #30
                                Looking at page 123 of the core book, its states regarding the Practice of Shielding:

                                "Shielding spells, sometimes called Warding spells, offer protection against phenomena under the Arcanum’s purview. A Shielding spell might protect against a ghost’s Numina (Death), make the mage immune to fire (Forces) or disease (Life), or allow her to survive in a caustic atmosphere (Matter). Mages protect themselves from general harm through the power of their Arcana with the Mage Armor Attainment rather than Shielding spells."

                                I would also like to draw attention to this passage from the Many Roads tab in page 124 of the same book:

                                "​Astute players will likely figure out a multitude of ways to accomplish similar effects with different Arcana, sometimes at different dot levels. This is okay. Just because a Fate ••• spell can do a thing doesn’t mean a Forces • spell that does a similar thing is “broken” or should be disallowed."

                                Therefore, the first tab seems to indicate that RAW supports this spell and the second one states that RAI are also in favor of it. I would also like to suggest the following: Do whatever creates the most fun at your table. If you are willing to go the extra mile to make players get the most out of the Forces Arcanum (provided there are in characters justification for them figuring this stuff out), then go for it. If you do not feel comfortable with this challenge, talk to your players and setup a house rule before they try to commit too deeply to that Arcanum. Just like culinary, there is not an absolutely best way to cook, just dishes that suit your style and the preferences of those who are enjoying the meal alongside you.
                                Last edited by KaiserAfini; 12-26-2020, 08:22 PM.


                                New experiences are the font of creativity, when seeking inspiration, break your routine.

                                The Agathos Kai Sophos, an Acanthus Legacy of strategists (Mind/Time)
                                The Szary Strażnik, an Obrimos Legacy of Scholars of the Glyphs of Fate (Fate/Prime)

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