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Space 2, does anyone do without it?

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  • Space 2, does anyone do without it?

    This post may be odd, but I have noticed that pretty much every player character in our games either starts with, or rapidly acquires Space at 2 dots. They may almost never use it aside from its sympathetic range attainment and scrying, but every player (including me) feels that this ability is de rigueur for any serious mage. Any arcanum is of incredible use, but this one has gotten the reputation for being indispensable. For what I can only call aesthetic reasons, it bugs me to see this arcanum so favored (even though I admit my characters snap it up as well).

    My question is, do other players find this typical in their games? Each of our players is constantly finding themselves in a situation wherein that particular skill set is needed - how many players don't use space and don't particularly feel crippled by the lack?

  • #2
    Few are the characters that I've seen that don't start with Space 2 or attempt to acquire it in short order. The ability to extend your cast range infinitely (if with some restrictions) is a pretty potent thing. I mean, you could make do without it, sure, but why would you?

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    • #3
      Yeah, there's really no compelling reason not to take Space 2 ASAP.


      Going by Willow now, or Wil for short. She/Her/Hers.

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      • #4
        All my characters used to have Space 2 because I like the esoteric (by our standards) Arcana. I also fancied myself a Jedi knight, so I kind of needed scrying and omnivision and stuff like that. Then I tried to make characters without it and that's how I discovered the awesomeness of other Arcana.

        When everybody is using Space magic to do something, it makes it really easy for rivals and enemies to take advantage or counter that. Diversifying your magical skill set is the best way to explore magic and get the upper hand on your enemies.

        I've discovered that my new go-to Arcanum has become Forces. Even my favorite Acanthus character had Time 3, Fate 3, Forces 2, Spirit 1 and I was so happy. No need for Space at all. That's what the Oathbreakers are for.

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        • #5
          Isn't Prime similarly must-have? If you're not playing a Magistos or Obrimos you kind of need to pick one or the other, at least initially.

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          • #6
            Yeah, I personally tend to rush Prime myself, but Space is sexy and cool too.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Elfive View Post
              Isn't Prime similarly must-have? If you're not playing a Magistos or Obrimos you kind of need to pick one or the other, at least initially.
              The only mages we have that use prime have it as one of their primary Arcana, and the others get by fine for the most part. In fact, all the mages in our games only take Arcana they plan to use as primary Arcana. They tend to have three to four Arcana, all of which they use and improve comparably - they may specialize a bit in one or the other of their major Arcana, but for the most part all the Arcana they have are major parts of their role as a mage. Except space. Only one mage has ever used space as one of his primary tools, but every single one has space 2. If there was any other arcana this happens to, it wouldn't bother me, but as it is I feel as if something is off.
              But apparently it is not unusual ...
              Last edited by Newes; 10-23-2016, 11:48 AM.

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              • #8
                I don't think I've ever played in a game where everyone takes Space 2. Typically we let the Mastigos do Space, and deal with it as an interesting limitation if the Mastigos doesn't happen to be available for the current session. I've had games where other people take Space, but that was typically worked into specific plans they had (like the Acanthus who wanted to be able to integrate Space into his postcognitions and divinations).

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                • #9
                  It feels somewhat less necessary than it did in 1st edition, mostly because there's so much more you can do without risking Paradox now, but it's still pretty necessary. The fact that Counterspell Prime isn't a spell anymore means you don't take it as a Rote like you used to basically have to

                  Space is just a flat-out awesome, though, so really you should end up taking it anyway.


                  We don't allow mages to cast spells, since this is the most unbalancing rule of all.

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                  • #10
                    What do you see them using it for? Just casting beyond sensory range? Does it come up that much?

                    I suppose the advantage I could see is being able to cast from a demesne.
                    Last edited by nofather; 10-23-2016, 04:11 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Well, I do have to say that I personally find it cool that the reason that mages take shadow names is because of my favorite arcanum. However, there's a not insignificant part of me that feels slightly offended that people study that arcanum only for its LESSER attainment. Space has so much more to offer than simply extending your reach! Consider the mage that disappears when walking around corners (obviously teleporting), but yet the security footage doesn't show him finishing the corner from one angle and clearly rounding the corner from the other. How does he do it? Or what about the bachelor pad inside that small apartment that is definitely larger on the inside than the outside? Forget where you put something? Space has the answer (psst, it's right next to you). Want to have five homes, all interconnected? Space has what you need. Need to get past that frustrating security guard keeping you from that grimoire that sleepers think is a first edition copy of Dante's Inferno? Space is the answer. Need to strike five enemies at once but don't want to risk paradox more than is necessary? The ADEPT attainment of Space has your back (at the small price of some mana). Want to hide your sanctum Black family mansion style? The practice of Unmaking of Space is there to help you.

                      *Sigh.* It really does feel like it takes a thousand words to paint a picture....hmm something there. Yes, I think I shall call myself Escher.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by nofather View Post
                        What do you see them using it for? Just casting beyond sensory range? Does it come up that much?

                        I suppose the advantage I could see is being able to cast from a demesne.
                        They use it for long distance casting and scrying. Yes, it comes up a lot.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Falcon777 View Post
                          Well, I do have to say that I personally find it cool that the reason that mages take shadow names is because of my favorite arcanum. However, there's a not insignificant part of me that feels slightly offended that people study that arcanum only for its LESSER attainment.
                          Yes, most of them literally have never used space for anything other than casting beyond sensory range, and scrying. Its not that they couldn't see the uses of Space if they were interested in it, its that they aren't really - they have other things going on. Somehow the concept of being able to use magic on and see distant locations seems intrinsic to the ability to use magic at all, so in their minds (and sometimes mine) those two abilities stand separate from the rest of the Space arcanum as a whole. We considered tweaking the rules so that those two abilities were unattached to a specific arcanum, but couldn't think of anyway to do it without making more changes to the magic system than we wanted to (we've done it before - by the end of 1st ED mage, we were playing under rules with only 7 Arcana, but we didn't want to twist 2nd Ed that much).

                          I was mainly interested in whether other players find it difficult to function without the abilities of Space 2, or if we were just looking at thinks wrongly. It seems grabbing Space at 2 is more common than not, but doesn't bother most players like it does me.

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                          • #14
                            If you wanted to hack that I'd suggest something like a Material Sympathetic connection can be Scrutinized with Focused Mage Sight with "Scrying" being Deep Information beneath an Opacity of the target's Withstand rating. From there you could just use the Remote Viewing casting rules. Then you just have to figure out how comfortable you are with how often they need to go through the Scutiny process to access those options.

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                            • #15
                              For the one long term Mage game I was in, I was the only character with Space, and none of the other players ever felt I outclassed them (the group managed to max out every Arcana among us by the end of it, except, like, Time and Death). That being said, I went all in on Space and Spirit, so I had kind of an odd combination. I dealt with more issues with Firearms...

                              That being said, this was using kinda "1.5" rules (God-Machine + Dave's down and dirty Mage patch).



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