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Working on an Elemental magic-system feedback would be appreciated.

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Logos&Eidos, Jun 25, 2015.

  1. Logos&Eidos

    Logos&Eidos Sage

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    Elementalism is a magic-system that I find myself returning to. It was the first magic-system that ever occurred to me. And do it's simplicity and easily grasped nature It would add some much needed resonance to the rather strange world that I'm building.


    In this system magic is powered by prime-energy which is tapped from the practitioner's soul and projected into the world. Every mage possess elemental affinities of varying degrees of strength;Normally a principle and a secondary.

    There are five elements core,Aether,Fire,Air,Water,Earth. Each element possessing different aspect and a lower form and higher more abstract form.

    Aether: Is the closest element to prime-energy. It is the highest of the elements with a strong connection to life and through life both physical and psychic energy; It can also generate a form of virtual matter in the form of plasm. Esoteric-Aether can render matter ethereal enabling, teleportation and portals,phasing-through matter,invisibility and storing matter by putting object into a state of limbo.

    Fire: Its proper name is Radiance, the association with fire comes from the fact that fire is the most commonly manifested of the elements three aspects,heat,light,electricity. Esoteric-Fire can infuse things with energy. This infusion can be destructive causing objects,animals or persons to explode,it also can increase potential energy to making a fuel source more potent or volatile and letting physical objects hit with greater force.

    Air: has the aspects of Pressure and Vibration. Esoteric-Air can control kinetic energy and inertia.

    Water: Esoteric-Water has power over the force of entropy and metaphysical malleability.

    Earth: has Metal as one of it's aspects. Esoteric-Earth has power over the force of gravity and metaphysical solidity.


    The most pressing issue to me are.

    Besides Ice and Vapor I can't think of any other aspects for Water.

    If Wood is going to be part of elements where to place it. I was thinking of Wood as rare aspect of Aether given aether's connection to life and that Wood is a living.

    The place of sympathetic-magic,should it be tide to Aether or be a separate and extremely rare metamagic talent.

    What do spells that incorporate all five elements do?
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2015
  2. evolution_rex

    evolution_rex Inkling

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    Yeah, if you're going to make a single life-themed element, then wood and plants would go into that. Personally, I would get rid of the Aether and make one element for plants and the other for animals.
     
  3. Logos&Eidos

    Logos&Eidos Sage

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    I'm fairly committed to five elements,but anything is subject to revision. In some traditions the fifth element is void, the word carried the wrong connotations in English so I went with aether.

    I needed an element that did really weird stuff, crossing into the realm of the immaterial. Aether or Void was the element and i could cleanly divide the element into Exoteric and Esoteric. Tying life and psychic energy together as different aspect of a vital-force solved a lot of headaches.

    Being the jrpg player that I am,I wanted to keep Wood around. It's kinda obvious that Esoteric-Wood should grant direct life force manipulation. However other power such manipulating ectoplsam,teleportation, don't really fit into Wood.
     
  4. evolution_rex

    evolution_rex Inkling

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    What about six elements? Earth, Fire, Water, Air, Life (dealing with the manipulation of animals/plants), and then your Aether which would deal with the manipulation of things like physics? Being able to manipulate gravity, time, that sort of thing?
     
  5. When it comes to controlling living things, especially plants, they are a combination of all five elements. There's the spark of life (Aether), the energy gained from the Sun (fire), the carbon dioxide it breaths and the oxygen it breaths out (air), the soil it is rooted in (Earth), and the water that flows through it as well as the water it takes in (water). So, perhaps, if you are interested in mages controlling wood through elemental magic it could be a combination of all five?

    I like Wood being an aspect of Aether, also.
     
    Logos&Eidos likes this.
  6. Logos&Eidos

    Logos&Eidos Sage

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    First imagine that you are a Second-Commonwealth Battlemage and that your fighting Gilded Empire troops in a disputed city then you see "That Guy" from a distance. "That Guy" has been causing trouble for the Second-Commonwealth Army all day, it's not enough to take him out he's got to die ugly. So what do you do? Start with the element of Earth use it's Metal aspect to gather up bits of nearby metal and shape them into aerodynamic spike. Next add Fire to super heat the spikes follow that up with Air so that when you launch them they'll have little wind resistance. Okay that good but not quite ugly enough, you add a delayed release of Esoteric-Fire so that the spike will explode after impact. Then you add the finishing touches Esoteric-Air so that the spike will experience less inertia in flight. Your work complete the fusillade is released and "That Guy" does indeed die ugly.


    In certain jrpgs and fantasy novels that I've read the Elements have more abstract abilities in addition to the more obvious control over that which the element is named for. That is why I split the element's powers into Exoteric and Esoteric.

    I mentioned the elements in order of highest to lowest from lofty Aether to the mundane Earth. If I went with six element the order would be Aether,Fire,Air,Water,Wood,Earth.

    In a six element Exoteric-Aether would be, plasm and psychic energy Esoteric-Aether is unchanged from the five element system. Exoteric-Wood controls plant based matter and Esoteric life force.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2015
  7. Swordfry

    Swordfry Troubadour

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    For water: you could sort of make this a duel natured element. It is never just one form of matter. It can be liquid, solid, gas, and also jelly or gel like. You can also say it is duel natured in this sense: it is unpredictable and has disorder, but it can also have oder. Think of the tides and how one can predict the tides based on the moon's location. There is also the matter of it being life giving and life killing. Water flows though every living being, and every living being needs to drink it to survive. However, too much water can kill you from overhydration, and drowing. Not to mention that most water is salt water which, if consumed, will kill you very quickly.

    Just some food for thought.
     
  8. Logos&Eidos

    Logos&Eidos Sage

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    I really like the Idea of Wood drawing from the other five elements, however I can't help but feel that Wood should do something
    truly extraordinary beyond controlling planet matter. If I made Wood it's own element I'd still have that problem, what does the Esoteric side of Wood do? Without taking lifeforce control from Aether and giving it Wood.

    Alchemy, the transmutation of matter exist in this system and it requires the Elements Water,Aether and earth.
    Esoteric-Water to break something down Aether as a medium and Esoteric-Earth to stabilize the changed matter.


    That's was kind of my thinking already. Unlike earth water readily changes state, it's Esoteric aspects of entropy and metaphysical fluidity tie in to waters changing nature and ability to break down anything given time.
     
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