House Rules for
Mage: The Ascension
"You've got the touch, you've got the power.
When all hell's breaking loose,
You'll be right in the eye of the storm.
It's in the blood, it's in the will,
It's in the mighty hands of steel,
When you're standin' your ground.
And you'll never get hit when you're back's to the wall,
You'll fight to the end and you're takin' it all."
-- Stan Bush, "The Touch" from Transformers
Encouraging Vulgar Magick
Vulgar magic and coincidental magic switch base difficulties.
- Coincidental Magick: Highest Sphere +4
- Vulgar Magick: Highest Sphere +3
- Note: There is no increased difficulty for "with witnesses" (See below). Penalties for that are found with Paradox.
- Coincidental Magick: 0 points
- Coincidental Magick (Botched): 1 point per dot in highest Sphere used
- Vulgar Magick: 1 point
- Vulgar Magick (Botched): 1 point + 1 point per dot in highest Sphere used
- Vulgar Magick with Witnesses: 2 points
- Vulgar Magick with Witnesses (Botched): 2 points + 2 points per dot in highest Sphere used
Paradox is noted when a spell is being cast. The mage rolls their Arete, designating a number of dice equal to their current Paradox rating as Paradox dice (These dice should be obviously different). Any Paradox die that rolls a '1' counts as a point of Paradox backlash (This should be no less than half of the total accumulated paradox).
This allows a mage to successfully cast a spell without Paradox, or have a spell go off and have a Paradox backlash at the same time.
A mage may have certain effects permanently alter his or her body so that it is no longer within static reality. This gives the mage a permanent level of Paradox. Every point in a ability above 5 gives 1 point of permanent Paradox (unless the GM allows one change to alter 2 abilities, e.g. growing to 8 ft tall allowing a 6 Strength and Stamina). All changes must be paid for, and the mage's player must have 50% of the points required as a "downpayment". Permanent Paradox stays with the mage even after '1's are rolled, and a mage's permanent Paradox rating may never be higher than his or her Arete.
Alternate Damage Rules
The highest sphere level in the effect plus your Arete minus one is your base pool. Add the number of successes on your "magical effect" roll minus one to the base pool.
When using a conjunctional effect add one die for each additional sphere.
Roll these dice (difficulty 6).
Note: This sheet refers to damage dealt directly by the magikal effect, rather than by circumstances surrounding the effect. There are endless ways to deal damage by creative use of magik through almost all of the to effects. Even the level one effects can be used to help do more damage through determining weaknesses, precision strikes, locating targets, etc.
- Correspondence: to Correspondence may not normally do direct damage and it isn't possible until level four. One exception is when using it to teleport one object into another.
- Entropy: to Entropy cannot do direct damage until level three. When used to do direct damage Entropy is always vulgar and inflicts aggravated damage.
- Forces: to Forces adds one success to rolls for damage.
- Life: to Only when the Life effect being used affects the pattern itself is it aggravated. It is then also vulgar.
- Matter: to Only when the Matter effect being used affects the pattern itself is it aggravated. It is then also vulgar.
- Mind: to Mind subtracts one success to rolls for damage and it is always stun damage.
- Prime: to When Prime is used to directly inflict damage it is both vulgar and aggravated. This is not the case with Prime created effects.
- Spirit/Dimensional Science: to Spirit may not do direct damage until level four. When used to do direct damage it will only affect spirits, wraiths, spectres, umbrood, etc. or other beings in the umbra. Spirit effects that summon other spirits to attack living creatures are aggravated.
- Time: Time may not do direct damage at all.
Note: Certain effects will inflict aggravated damage based solely on what the target is.
A mage may spend 1 freebie point or 1 xp (the cost may be higher for more complicated rotes) and make any rote "well-learned" This rote must be within the mage's sphere knowledge. Upon choosing the rote, the mage's player must state to the Storyteller the following things: what spheres are used, any foci required, and whether (the first time used) it is vulgar or coincidental (the name is nice, but not required). Anytime the mage uses the rote and fufills all requirements the difficulty for the effect drops by 2.