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2 Fluff based mage questions: Can "Anyone" Awaken? and What is an Imago in narrative?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post

    I think that description given for Gnosis can cover mages knowing the basic extent of their capabilities, even if they lack a theoretical framework.

    I think the actual structure of the Astral Realms needs to be taught or discovered, but if meditating one's way in at the right places is an innate property of mages then I think they can get an impulse to try when the conditions are correct.
    Perhaps this is just a problem with me but does a mage understand what reach is when they start? Do they know how magic works? Is paradox a thing that has to be learned? How well does the mage know about the mechanics of an imago? I know these are going to be subconscious things. However, it's hard to parse how a newly created mage should work. Are they just going to be blasting spells with as much reach as they can until they learn about paradox? From a game perspective, I understand how these spells work. I just don't understand how they translate to the game with new mages.
    Last edited by Epimetheus; 01-20-2021, 05:25 PM.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Epimetheus View Post
      Perhaps this is just a problem with me but does a mage understand what reach is when they start? Do they know how magic works? Is paradox a thing that has to be learned? How well does the mage know about the mechanics of an imago? I know these are going to be subconscious things. However, it's hard to parse how a newly created mage should work. Are they just going to be blasting spells with as much reach as they can until they learn about paradox? From a game perspective, I understand how these spells work. I just don't understand how they translate to the game with new mages.
      Mages learn High speech during their awakening.
      The symbol of this language are the building blocks of all magic, so i think that at this point a mage is like a child who had just learned the alphabet.
      He can potentially write anything, but he is still limited by his unfamiliarity with grammar.
      Considering that until a mage start casting spell he probably has never met anything paradox related, and that from Supernal realms no info on it can be gained because it contains only symbols of truth, a new mage would probably know nothing about paradox.
      Probably he would start experimenting on spells factors and reaches from the first spell.
      The Pneuma protects him from paradox, so he would initially observe only quiescence and dissonance effects if any.
      After the pneuma expires he probably understands all of the basic spelp imago mechanics, and when he causes the first paradox he would probably start gathering info with mage sight.
      Aftet that, he would already understand that he can release or contain, and have a rough idea of what causes a paradox
      Last edited by Neos01; 01-20-2021, 07:13 PM.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Epimetheus View Post
        Perhaps this is just a problem with me but does a mage understand what reach is when they start? Do they know how magic works? Is paradox a thing that has to be learned?
        I think again the specifics are not known until they're sufficiently experienced or taught about, but if Gnosis is an intuitive understanding of how things fit together and there's an initial understanding of Arcanum from the Awakening itself, I presume a mage can figure out the extent of what they can do but can feel a pressure at the edges of it.

        I'd think of it like running. You can know basically how to run and what fatigue feels like even if you don't know how actual musculature works, moving your legs is just an innate process that doesn't require too much conscious thought. But it can help to manage training and exert yourself efficiently when you know those things a bit better.

        Originally posted by Epimetheus
        How well does the mage know about the mechanics of an imago?
        Based on descriptions in Dark Ages where Hellenistic mages are just starting to develop a rudimentary concept of the imago, I'm going to guess that it's not a naturally conceptualised thing even when one casts actual spells.

        I presume that a mage who has been instructed in the theoretical framework or developed some form of their own has some greater efficiency with the casting of a spell, a bit more fine tuning for assignment of factors or how far they Reach or precision in the targeting, but not in a manner that has resolution in the mechanics. I think it could also be played as useful for speculating on how another spell is working, and forming some of the basis of how Arcane Experience from encountering Mysteries is translating into greater Supernal knowledge.

        Originally posted by Epimetheus
        Are they just going to be blasting spells with as much reach as they can until they learn about paradox?
        It seems to me that such a thing depends on individual personality and the details of Awakening. I think it's consistent enough that the nature of the world would predispose most new mages to testing their new capabilities cautiously. Perhaps an idea that, in Gnosis, they recognise that they really are now capable of magic, but don't quite fully believe it at the start and don't want to push too far too quickly while convincing themselves.

        {Disclaimer, I have not yet read any Second Edition books, although I'm working my way up to it}


        I have approximate knowledge of many things.
        Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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        • #19
          As I see it, Awakened magic has a very large intuitive and experiential component to it. Mages, immediately after Awakening, understand to at least some degree what an imago is and how to create one; if they didn't they couldn't work magic until receiving formal training, and since Banishers never receive such training, it is clearly not essential. They don't necessarily understand the details of Reach, but they soon learn that pushing their limits feels "off" or "wrong" in some way, since Paradox is the result of the Abyss tainting the spell, and it's not hard to realize that sometimes that feeling precedes something strange happening. Honestly, most aspects of spell casting can be learned of with some experimentation and practice, especially since the mechanics of Paradox make it difficult for mages to severely damage themselves with Paradox unless they really work at it or their luck's really out that day.

          Concerning the various Astral realms, that's considerably more difficult to discover by simple experimentation. Other than lucid dreaming, astral travel has decidedly inobvious prerequisites. It's clearly possible, but it's fairly difficult. Personally, I'd be inclined to treat the initial discovery as a Mystery of Opacity 2 or 3.

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