Learning New Spell Lists

Copyright Lael Buchanan 1999

 

Just because the list is in the book doesn't mean that you can just walk down the street to the local hedge wizard and learn the spell list of your choice. Because magic is such a complex skill to learn, it is also a difficult skill to teach. For these reasons, I have set up the following rules for learning a new spell list.

I only use these rules when someone wants to learn a completely new list. If a character already knows the first level spell, then that list is developed normally without requiring a teacher. This is because the first few ranks of a new list are the most critical. It is during the first few ranks that the basic framework for the rest of the list is set. If you have a faulty understanding of the basics, then you will have a very difficult time mastering the advanced uses of the list. Learning higher ranks is mostly a matter of experience with what you know and building on the basics.

The first concern is whether or not a teacher is available for the list in question. Because some lists are going to be harder to teach or more closely guarded, I have developed separate tables for Open, Closed, and Base lists. Training Package lists assume that there is some associated skill training with a teacher. Finding a teacher of a Training Package can be referenced as an Open or Closed list depending on the availability of the TP in the GMs world. Should a character want to learn a training package list outside of the TP with which it is associated, the GM should treat the list as a Base list for purposes of finding a teacher.

Open ListsClosed ListsBase Lists
1 - 30None1 - 50None1 - 70None
31 - 70Lesser51 - 85Lesser71 - 90Lesser
71 - 95Major86 - 98Major91 - 99Major
96 - 100Greater99 - 100Greater100Greater

Once the general grade of teacher has been determined, it is necessary to determine the skill level the teacher has in the spell list and in teaching. These two factors will combine to determine how easily the teacher can pass on knowledge of the spell list. Unless you want to do a character sheet for each teacher, you can consult the following table for this information. These numbers assume potential teachers have knowledge of the spell list in question and skill at teaching.

Lesser

Major

Greater

1 - 50

+10

+20

+30

51 - 75

+20

+30

+40

76 - 95

+30

+40

+50

96 - 99

+40

+50

+60

100

+50

+60

+70

The teacher then makes a Static Maneuver modified by the bonus given above. The results are given on the following Teaching Results Table:

-26 & Down: Spectacular Failure:The Teacher will never be able to teach the student this spell list.
-25 -- -05: Absolute Failure:Teacher can teach this spell list, but it is much more difficult for the student to learn. The List will be classified as Restricted and the first two ranks will cost double the normal DP cost.
-04 -- 75: Failure:As above, but the first two ranks only cost +50% of the normal DP cost.
UM 66: Tainted Success:The list is learned with surprising ease. The list will be considered Everyman, but is "tainted". Any time a spell failure occurs while casting a spell from this list, there is a chance equal to the level of the spell that a demon whose level is also equal to the level of the spell will begin to hunt the caster. Whenever the caster uses another spell from this list, there is a chance equal to the level of the spell that the demon will find the caster and appear nearby to attack the caster and anyone else nearby.
76 -- 90: Partial Success:Spell List can be learned at normal cost after the first rank is bought. The first rank costs +50% DPs extra to reflect a harder time learning the list.
91 -- 110: Near Success:As Above, but the First Rank only costs +25% DP extra.
UM 100: Unusual Success:The List may be learned normally, but the first two ranks are free.
111 -- 175: Success:The Spell List can be learned normally.
176 & Up: Absolute Success:The Spell List is classified as Everyman and the first rank of the list is free.

 Editor's Note

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