Mage Character Creation

MAGE CHARACTER CREATION
Apply Path: There are five Paths:

  • Acanthus: Ruling: Fate, Time; Inferior: Forces; Attribute: Composure; Skills: Expression, Investigation
  • Mastigos: Ruling: Mind, Space; Inferior: Matter; Attribute: Resolve; Skills: Empathy, Politics
  • Moros: Ruling: Death, Matter; Inferior: Spirit; Attribute: Composure; Skills: Crafts, Streetwise
  • Obrimos: Ruling: Prime, Forces; Inferior: Death; Attribute: Resolve; Skills: Academics, Science
  • Thyrsus: Ruling: Life, Spirit; Inferior: Mind; Attribute: Composure; Skills: Medicine, Survival

Awakening onto a Path grants a mage 25 experience points to spend on attributes. The mage’s favored Resistance Attribute must be higher than 1 after this experience is spent.

Record Gnosis and Mana: A mage begins with 1 dot of Gnosis. Gnosis determines a mage’s capacity to store Mana and how many points of Mana they can spend between the beginning of one turn to that of the next.

  • Gnosis 1: 10 Mana, spend 1/turn
  • Gnosis 2: 11 Mana, spend 2/turn
  • Gnosis 3: 12 Mana, spend 3/turn
  • Gnosis 4: 13 Mana, spend 4/turn
  • Gnosis 5: 14 Mana, spend 5/turn
  • Gnosis 6: 15 Mana, spend 6/turn
  • Gnosis 7: 20 Mana, spend 7/turn
  • Gnosis 8: 25 Mana, spend 8/turn
  • Gnosis 9: 50 Mana, spend 10/turn
  • Gnosis 10: 100 Mana, spend 15/turn

Assign Arcana: A mage begins with 1 dot in each of their ruling Arcana, and 63 experience points to spend on Arcana. All Arcana cost (New Rating x 7) XP. This experience can be saved up, but it can’t bring more than one Arcanum to 3 dots, and can’t bring any Arcana higher than 3 dots. The mage’s two ruling Arcana must be among their three highest Arcana.
Generally this means you can start with a 3/2/1/1 or a 2/2/2/1/1 Arcanum array.

Assign Rotes: A mage begins with knowledge of four rotes. Further rotes cost 3xp each to learn.

Wisdom: Mages usually begin the game with Wisdom 4. A mage’s player should record the most severe kind of paradox that mage can lengthen in duration.

Assign Legacy: A mage who joins a Legacy expands their Mage Sight and becomes able to perform oblations anywhere, but their oblations cease to draw additional Mana from Hallows. A Legacy’s Attainments usually cost 9xp each.

MAGE MERITS
Artifact (• or more): You control a supernal artifact with a rating equal to your dots in this Merit.

Grimoires (• to •••••): You have a number of grimoires in your personal possession. One dot in this merit means your collection contains one distinct rote. Each further dot adds one more rote than the last did, so five dots means grimoires containing a total of fifteen rotes. You decide which rotes your grimoire collection holds. You’re very practiced with the spells of your collection – it only takes you hours equal to a rote’s total Arcanum dots to memorize that rote, and successes rolled to represent your efforts shave hours off the time or successively halve the single hour remaining.

Hallow (• to •••••): You control a Hallow with a rating equal to your dots in this Merit. Usually, this Hallow is in or near the place represented by your Safe Place, if you have one.

High Speech (•): You know the Atlantean High Speech. You can use words of power to help pay for spells, and design and create Atlantean runic inscriptions that fortify spells. Only mages can clearly hear and see the High speech; other characters, even supernatural creatures, receive a garbled or nonsensical impression of the sounds and symbols used.

Occultation (• to •••): You fade from prominence and are difficult to scrutinize. As long as you’re diligent to avoid developing a public persona among Sleepers, you gain the following benefits, based on your Occultation rating.

  • Fading Identity (•): Attempts to research your history or whereabouts fail unless the researcher spends Willpower to bolster their search.

  • Distant Resonance (••): It takes one more success than normal to uncover your resonance signature on subjects other than your person, unless that signature is of Intimate strength.

  • Forgotten Sympathy (•••): Any sympathetic connection to you which isn’t naturally Intimate is treated as though it was one step worse. Intimate connections temporarily degraded through repeated use aren’t affected.

Order Absorption (• to •••): See Order Absorption, below.

Order Status (• to •••••): You have standing within one of the Orders of the Pentacle. Each dot in this merit grants you standing and resources:

  • You have an Edge equal to your Order Status on social rolls made to influence members of your Order at or below your rank.
  • You know one extra rote per dot of Status that your Order has taught you. Rotes derived from Order Status are acquired and sustained by ongoing participation in your Order’s activities; a mage who loses contact with or leaves their Order loses these bonus rotes.
  • You gain the High Speech Merit automatically and at no cost.

It’s technically possible to have Order Status in more than one Order, but it requires being a double agent or otherwise maintaining multiple identities; formally, a mage is meant to belong to only one Order at a time.

Sanctum (••): You have adapted a place’s resonance closely to that of your nimbus. Any complex Atlantean inscription you create within your sanctum can be activated with a Willpower point rather than with a Willpower dot. A Sanctum is usually also a Safe Place. Multiple characters can claim the same place as a sanctum, but each must possess this merit. A character can possess more than one copy of this Merit, each representing a different sanctum.

ORDER ABSORPTION (• to •••)

Your immersion into the mysteries of your Order grants you increasing facility with supernal magic. You must have Order Status to buy this merit, and can’t increase your rating in this merit above your rating in Order Status, but you don’t lose this merit if you lose contact with or leave your Order. However, you can only possess one Order Absorption merit at a time, and must unlearn one Order’s methodologies before you can learn another’s.

Each dot of this Merit provides a distinct benefit based on your Order:

THE ATLANTEAN DIAMOND

  • Dragon’s Calling (•): You can consecrate personal implements and workspaces appropriate to your Order, and use certain Skills besides Occult when scrutinizing Resonance. As well, each scene, you immediately regain the first point of Mana you spend on spells that perform or aid in tasks related to your Order’s philosophy.

    • Adamantine Arrow (Athletics, Intimidation, Medicine): defending against harm, engaging in personal combat, improving or restoring health

    • Guardians of the Veil (Larceny, Stealth, Subterfuge): concealing things, ferreting out secrets, misleading or intimidating others

    • Mysterium (Academics, Investigation, Survival): blocking intrusion or theft, collecting information, navigating or surviving hostile environments

    • Silver Ladder (Expression, Persuasion, Politics): enforcing commands and agreements, facilitating communication, removing restraints

  • Fivefold Symmetry (••): You can draw on the aid of members of your Order or other mages with this Merit to cast and sustain spells beyond your own abilities. Up to four such mages can aid you at once, and each one must use their instant action for the current turn to lend you their power. Then, until the end of your next turn, you can cast a single improvised spell or a rote you know as though your rating in each Arcanum was equal to the highest of anyone in the group, and as though each ruling Arcanum of anyone in the group was also a ruling Arcanum for you. This spell can be Shaped normally.

    Once the spell is cast, it can be sustained by the nimbuses group as a whole. You distribute each point of its Mana cost among yourself and those aiding you, and for as long as each mage sustains their share of the spell, the spells remains active. However, each mage must use another instant action to lend you their power in order to allow you to recast, refresh, or Shape the spell again.

  • Dragon’s Dream (•••): Your Order becomes one of your Intimacies, and doesn’t count against your maximum number of Intimacies. Also, you can consecrate public workspaces for your Order.

THE FREE COUNCIL
Free Council mages only need Status • to increase Order Absorption to any rating; unlike members of the Diamond Orders, they don’t need to advance in rank to gain access to deeper magical secrets.

  • Terrestrial Affinity (•): You can consecrate personal implements and workspaces appropriate to the Free Council, and you can use the Crafts, Expression, and Science Skills to scrutinize Resonance. The first point of Mana you spend to resist Disbelief each scene is immediately regained. When you spend Willpower to enhance a spell you Shape, such as with Words of Power or extra dice, that spell adds no dice to the turn’s paradox roll. A vulgar spell affected this way still provokes a paradox roll, but such a roll defaults to a chance die in the absence of local Paradox Intensity or other sources of paradox.

  • Fivefold Symmetry (••): You can draw on the aid of members of your Order or other mages with this Merit to cast and sustain spells beyond your own abilities. Up to four such mages can aid you at once, and each one must use their instant action for the current turn to lend you their power. Then, until the end of your next turn, you can cast a single improvised spell or a rote you know as though your rating in each Arcanum was equal to the highest of anyone in the group, and as though each ruling Arcanum of anyone in the group was also a ruling Arcanum for you. This spell can be Shaped normally.

    Once the spell is cast, it can be sustained by the nimbuses group as a whole. You distribute each point of its Mana cost among yourself and those aiding you, and for as long as each mage sustains their share of the spell, the spells remains active. However, each mage must use another instant action to lend you their power in order to allow you to recast, refresh, or Shape the spell again.

  • Hallowed World (•••): Once per scene, when you spend a point of Mana in defense of one of your Intimacies, roll your Wisdom. On a success, you regain that point of Mana immediately. Also, you can consecrate public workspaces for your Order.

Mage Character Creation

The Act of Hubris Ferrinus