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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Titan in the Playground
     
    2D8HP's Avatar

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    Default Magic Lost and Reborn

    This Worldbuilding idea was inspired a bit by the GURPS "Banestorm" setting and this 5e D&D Forum thread:
    http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showt...ers&p=20763103
    And I'm asking for advice and comments.
    For what it's worth I prefer no other"Planes" of existence, and to instead to use a "one world" model ala the Cosmology of the Greek myths, the Drow to be the original progenitor Elves, and humans to be descended from Elf/Orc hybrids.
    In the old 70's/80's D&D I used to play, it made thematic sense for low level Magic Users to be weak (otherwise every other villager would be a Mage) and it seemed to fit the literature that the "Great and Powerful Wizard" would be more potent than "The Mighty Warrior". It also seemed like a just payoff for sticking it out and surviving, when most everyone choose Fighting-men PC's instead. Now some guys could have fun as a 1st level M.U. but they were the same guys who enjoyed rolling up a drooling begger in "Stormbringer".
    I admit that both as a player and a DM I have not got past 5th level in 5e, and I have been enjoying how much more effective low level PC's are, especially the Spellcasters. As a DM I have also made use of "Anti-Magic Fields", and being forewarned (Thanks playground!) about over powered Wizards at higher levels, has made me consider stealing er... homaging Larry Niven's "Magic Goes Away" and have over use of Magic cause Anti-Magic Fields!
    This could explain why a post apocalyptic Dark Age setting (but with some Renaissance technology cause Plate Armour and Rapier's natch'), the loss of a high magic civilization leading to ruins all over! Then the Magic (and the Monsters!) returned (my Lord I love worldbuilding)!
    So over use of magic (such as from a high level Wizard/Sorcerer duel!) drains "manna" from an area leaving it "dry". So what makes magic return? Maybe just enough time, or maybe something sinister like in David Brin's "Life Eaters".
    So you can have heroes and villains battling to keep or cause Magic from draining away, always with the threat of too much use making magic impossible, and possibly there can be foul evil Necromatic rituals that temporarily boost available Magic!
    Or it may also be neccesary to have levels in Sorcerer (a natural ability is required to cast Arcane Spells) before anyone can learn Wizardry?
    Quote Originally Posted by JoeJ View Post
    D&D is not Pendragon (although I found it was surprisingly easy to come up with a few house rules to turn it into something more like that).
    Also for what it's worth, D&D is my favorite RPG I have actually played (much better than other not fun RPG's *cough* Cyberpunk *ahem*), (King Arthur) Pendragon is my favorite RPG I never got to play, and Call of Cthullu was the easiest rules I ever GM'd, I am definitely open to mixing up rules systems, but it no longer comes as easy as it did in my youth.
    Last edited by 2D8HP; 2016-05-10 at 04:07 PM.

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    Halfling in the Playground
     
    ElfMonkGuy

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    Default Re: Magic Lost and Reborn

    One of the idea I had to make magic more dynamic in my campaigns is to make the location effect the magic a spellcaster has access to.

    In certain places the energy of the universe may flow better, or simply be more abundant than others. Similarly in some locations magic would be nigh unusable. This would make the whole "ultra powerful lich stays in his tower while puny goblins do tasks" seem more reasonable and force spellcasters to seriously think about what they do before the start blowing things up willy nilly.


    Another idea I had was to make magic require objects to use. Example: At 1st level a wizard ha third level a wizard has 3 1st level slots and 2 2nd level ones. In the normal system, said wizard could cast spells completely unrelated like misty step and burning hands.

    However with this system, the spellcaster can only cast spells through objects, using them as a funnel for their arcane energy. So a wizard with a ring of fire could use it to cast burning hands or scorching ray as long as he had high enough spell slots. Naturally this would substitute spell components (mostly) as well as arcane focuses.
    Believe me, I have some insight to the ways of the world.


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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Magic Lost and Reborn

    That reminds me of a oft forgotten part of Heroes of Might and Magic III

    There was terrain that either amplified or nullified magic.

    http://heroes.thelazy.net/wiki/Magical_terrain

    Quick copy/paste for the non-link followers

    • Magic Plains - All Spells at expert
    • Fiery Fields - All Fire magic at expert
    • Lucid Pools - All Water magic at expert
    • Rockland - All Earth magic at expert
    • Magic Clouds - All Air magic at expert
    • Favorable Winds - Navigation bonus
    • Clover Field +2 Luck to Neutrally Aligned
    • Holy Ground +1 Morale to Good Aligned
    • -1 Morale to Evil Aligned
    • Evil Fog +1 Morale to Evil Aligned
    • -1 Morale to Good Aligned
    • Cursed Ground Only lvl 1 Spells
    • Disable Native terrain, Morale and Luck bonu

    s

    (hmmm formatting not working for me,)
    Last edited by halcyonforever; 2016-05-13 at 02:56 PM.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Magic Lost and Reborn

    I've seen a few published settings do similar things to some of these ideas. In Dark Sun, arcane magic is drawn from plant life. Careful, patient spellcasters can learn how to draw power from the plants around them without causing lasting harm, while impatient, power-hungry ones can just rip the power out, killing all nearby plants and turning the soil into sterile dirt that takes years to recover at best. Because the impatient "defiler" school of magic existed for a long time before the patient "preserver" methods were developed, overuse of magic has more or less destroyed the ecosystem of the setting's core region, and perhaps of the entire planet. In that setting, any area that is devoid of plant life (probably from the use of defiler magic) is unsuitable for casting arcane magic of any sort.

    In the Scarred Lands setting, arcane magic came into existence when a primordial Titan was killed by the gods. Mortals can harvest the power given off by his death to perform magic. The interesting thing there is that nobody has any idea what the long-term consequences of this are. In-setting theories abound, but my favorite is that, some day in the distant future, when mortals use up all the Titan's arcane magic, the Titan will be returned to life to resume wreaking havoc among god and mortal alike.
    I have decided I no longer like my old signature, so from now on, the alphorn-wielding lobster yodeler in my profile pic shall be presented without elaboration.

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    Troll in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Magic Lost and Reborn

    Perhaps there's some celestial event, rare but repeating, that "deposits" more magical energy on the Earth. Until the event comes around again, what's on Earth is all you've got, but it'll get refreshed every 10,000 years or so.

    (I can't believe this is the first time I've thought of that, actually. Most of my suggestions on these pages tend to be things I've toyed around with for a while. I'll have to use that in one of my settings someday.)

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    Default Re: Magic Lost and Reborn

    Quote Originally Posted by VoxRationis View Post
    Perhaps there's some celestial event, rare but repeating, that "deposits" more magical energy on the Earth. Until the event comes around again, what's on Earth is all you've got, but it'll get refreshed every 10,000 years or so.

    (I can't believe this is the first time I've thought of that, actually. Most of my suggestions on these pages tend to be things I've toyed around with for a while. I'll have to use that in one of my settings someday.)
    Dust from a long-period comet... also draws on "comets as omens" and "celestial cycles".
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

    Verisimilitude -- n, the appearance or semblance of truth, likelihood, or probability.

    The concern is not realism in speculative fiction, but rather the sense that a setting or story could be real, fostered by internal consistency and coherence.

    The Worldbuilding Forum -- where realities are born.

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    Default Re: Magic Lost and Reborn

    Imagine a Continent with an "Eberron" or "Tippyverse" magi-tech like setting, and then, perhaps wasted away in a cataclysmic war, magic stops working ala Larry Niven's "The Magic Goes Away".
    What was once a great civilization becomes first a wasteland, and then a wilderness. Except for a few remote forests, mountain tops, and in underground shelters (ala "Beneath The Planet of the Apes"), without the spark of Magic the inhabitants descend into savagery (Orcs etc.), and settlers from a non-Magic based civilization (humans?) plant towns on the coasts and rivers.

    Then after centuries of slumber, first slowly, then like a shock, Magic returns.

    Long ignored books of lore of interest only to antiquarians prove to have working spells and Wizardry returns. A generation comes of age that for the first time in living memory has Sorcerers. Magical constructs and undead come alive. Long slumbering Dragons awaken. Monsters of every sort are reborn. Artifacts long forgotten in the ruins pulse with Magic again. Expeditions of Adventurers are chartered to explore and exploit an unknown land made uncanny with reborn Magic.
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    Default Re: Magic Lost and Reborn

    Quote Originally Posted by 2D8HP View Post
    My theories aren't crazy at all!
    Just because those blind fools at the Mages Guild roll their eyes, and won't admit the truth!
    I'll show them! All show them all!

    First, the half-elves, and half-orcs among us show that elves, humans, and orcs are in fact the same species!
    Humans are actually descendents of long ago Elves and Orcs.
    Don't walk away! In your hart you know it's true!

    Also the reason Elves have low light vision like Dwarves and Gnomes, is because they too originally lived underground. Clearly these rumors of "Dark Elves", sometimes called "Drow", point towards the inescapable conclusion that "surface" Elves are in fact descended from Elves who were exiled from the Underdark because they were insufficiently badass! And in fact the day star bleached them! That is why Wood Elves who lived under the shade of their forest homes are darker hued. Either that or the reliance on magic among the so called "high elves", makes them both lazy and pasty!

    In fact this overuse of Magic by some may doom us all!
    The ruins of the Ancients all around, in the wastelands and underground shows the truth!
    Long ago the Elves
    used up all the magic causing the fall of their civilization!

    Overuse of Magic in one place leeches the Mana from the Earh, leaving desolate wastelands in it's absence!
    The ancestors of the Elves having squandered all the magic fled underground, with a few remnants learning to survive in a world without magic. Yes humans and orcs! The Orcs who infest the ruins are the savage descendents of the Elves too stupid to leave. We humans are the descendents of those who didn't hide underground, or stupidly stay amongst the ruins, but instead pioneered new lands and made new tools.
    Why else would it be humans who invented the crossbow, the plow, sailing ships, and windmills? Only in times without Magic would anyone bother to build such things! That's why so many of us still toil on the land and in our smithies, instead of just learning Wizardry, were not too stupid to learn Spellcraft! Nay, deep in our souls we feel the warning that it can't last!

    That is why these tomb robbing Adventurer's have lately been finding magic items littering the ruins. For centuries there was insufficient environmental Mana for those items to be worth picking up!
    That is why there are Sorcerers now born among us when previous generations had none!
    The return of Magic to the wastelands is why suddenly all these magicsl monsters now infect our lands! Do you think our ancestors could have survived long if they'd always existed?

    We have forgotten and grown soft!
    We must conserve what Magic is left and learn from the Gnomes ways to make wonders without the Arcane arts. Too much reliance on and use of Wizardry will doom us!

    We must learn to grow our on food and distill water, without relying on Create Food and Water Spells, and if these Magic-User's continue to waste the Magic away in trivial goals, we must learn to fight off without spells, the bears, wolves and other beasts that threaten us, else we fall to claws and fangs!

    Take these pamphlets and spread the word before it's too late!
    The truth is out there.
    Heed the warnings!
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    Does the game you play feature a Dragon sitting on a pile of treasure, in a Dungeon?
    Quote Originally Posted by Ninja_Prawn View Post
    You're an NPC stat block."I remember when your race was your class you damned whippersnappers"
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