Practical Magic and Skills Unknown

Hello everyone, long time listener, first time caller. I am starting a new campaign where a player wants to try out Practical Magic. Going through the codex on pg 263 I found a line that I’m not quite sure what it means.

Players may not use the Sorcery skill as a stat or for Beginner’s Luck tests.

My understanding was that in order to cast Practical Magic it can proxy a skill that the user doesn’t have, is this a misreading on my part? Or is this merely saying that you can’t use it and mark practice in that skill?

I always heard how powerful Practical Magic was but while having your rolls be open-ended and using one exponent instead of other (presumably lower) exponents is a solid boon, with Tax it definitely seems much more subdued. I appreciate any input.

I think this is the case.

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What makes me wary of that interpretation is that the first part of the sentence is pretty clearly about not using it as a substitute for stat based tests, and so I think that referring to the “Beginner’s Luck tests” would also refer to the tests and not any kind of advancement

Also just wanted to say I always appreciate your input. Your questions about astrology for arenjii have always been a resource for me when trying code for burning wheel.

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Looking back over it, I see what you mean. It can’t be used for stat tests; when testing for a skill you don’t have; you make a stat test at double ob; so maybe Practical Magic can’t be used for skills you don’t have.

But, the second paragrapgh of page 265 says that it can be used for any skill in a mastered school of magic, so what gives?

My thinking is this: 1.) The first point clarifies that you can’t use Practical Magic to, say, win a race (Speed test) or tackle a person in a Fight (Power). 2.) The Beginner’s Luck clarifies to throw out rhe whole Beginner’s Luck procedure when using Practical Magic (for a skill you don’t have): Don’t double the Ob, don’t log a test for opening the skill if it’s Routine or for advancing Sorcery if it’s Difficult or Challenging; it’s just a Sorcery test. Ignore any other potential skills that might have been used to obercome the obstacle.

That should square the restriction on stat tests and Beginner’s Luck with the openness of being able to test in place of any skill in the category.

Hey! Thanks so much for saying! :grin: