I would like to have my wizard, Galen, begin the steps necessary to create his own wand.
Each step in this very long process would have its own belief to fulfill along the way (about learning, mastering, and using the skills necessary to create the wand). I envision the end product as being not only a wizards version of a “Swiss army knife” (having all of his necessary tools built in), but also aiding his Forte, Will, and Perception by +1 or 2 die each.
The wand would be Named Vessel, Modular in construction, and would be something that he could work on and improve over time. (Creating lots of mini-quests to look for antecedents and such)
Outside of being heavily dependent on the Enchanting Rules in the Magic Burner (which Gold refers us to any way), is there anything here that breaks the rules in Gold? Any problems I may have over looked? Has anybody done something similar to this? Your advice and expertise are greatly appreciated.
I would like to have my wizard, Galen, begin the steps necessary to create his own wand.
Please Note: I am a bit concerned about whether or not adding dice to Perception would be legal, as it could then be used to aid any perception rooted skill. While this would be great for some BL tests I fear it would be a rule breaker as it could also be used to aid any sorcery test including sorcery skills like Enchanting, which isn’t supposed to happen (although, it makes sense to me that a mage would use his wand for such a purpose).
I don’t think it breaks any rules but you might want to consider why you want this in your game. It seems a tad too powerful. It makes me feel like your intent is for your character “to win.” As a GM, I’d push back on that a bit. Then again, it gives the GM a chance to throw in really gnarly consequences every time you try and use it so… I dunno. I suppose how long it would take to earn would also be a mitigating factor. If you worked for 5 sessions, toiling against failed tests and consequences to get it, I could see that being good fun for everybody.
I interpreted the above as “adding dice to Perception rolls,” not “permanently boosting Perception.” The latter I think I’d say no to as a GM. Again, not explicitly illegal (I don’t think), but it’d ruin a lot of the fun.
I interpreted the above as “adding dice to Perception roles,” not “permanently boosting Perception.” The latter I think I’d say no to as a GM. Again, not explicitly illegal (I don’t think), but it’d ruin a lot of the fun.
Bonuses to a stat do not benefit already opened skills.
So a B5 Perception getting a +1D boost from a wand wouldn't boost the skill root exponent base from 2D to 3D for any skill that was already opened?
No, once a skill is opened it is separate from the root stat. Changes to the stat don’t propagate. Yes, this includes an epiphany of the root stat.
Cool, and thanks for getting back so fast. That was my primary rule breaker concern. Does it look ok then?
Just to be absolutely clear, the bonus dice don’t improve the stat for the purposes of being a root for newly opened skill or total tests required for opening new skills with Beginner’s Luck. Separately, once a skill is opened it’s separated from the root. If the root stat goes up (or down), changes shade, or is otherwise altered the skill is unchanged.
That wand looks like a munchkin tool and I would nix it immediately in any game I played. Sorcerers are good enough without bonuses. This isn’t really an interesting artifact, this is just free stats.
No it’s just the idea of making his own wand.
I even considered just paying 10 resource points as if buying a wizards staff but instead of a staff he gets all the stuff he needs to craft his own wand. Then he would hit the ground running, so to speak, with the belief about enchanting his wand. Then he would have to pass his test to enchant the wand with make magic and modularity which lasts until the death of the enchanter, no external duration, no trigger (for these two effects), these effects only affect the wand. This enchantment grants a +4D advantage for Named Vessel, Item Itself, and Specific Physical Condition (Death of the Enchanter). The end result is a wand that has the enchanters magic dweomer and may be improved upon by him as time and materials become available. He could, I suppose add a Sustainer into the creation of the wand to more closely match the wizard staff idea. That would add a +4 Ob which would bring the creation up to an Ob6 Vs. Enchanting skill with a +4D Advantage.
I know that the long term goal for a wand of wizardy seems powerful. But anyone who would be in a game long enough to actually make it at that level is going to be powerful. The way I’m having Galen do it, he has to learn how to carve a wand first. (Yeah, its going to be a long road.)
The Stat Advantages (if added to the wand) only are in affect while the wand is grasped, definitely not permanate.
You hath said what was in my heart.
+1D to a few stats isn’t that huge of a bonus for magic items. I think it’d be fine.
Note that bonuses never affect roots unless explicitly stated otherwise. If that was the point of this enchantment, you’d have to pay special for it.
I would not allow this interpretation of Specific Physical Condition in my games. You’ll notice that the examples of conditions in the MaBu (can’t get wet, can’t touch the ground, user can never refuse a handshake) all have something in common: they all require the item’s user to go out of their way to ensure that the condition is not met, and in return for introducing this fun new complication into your life, you get +2D to doing the enchantment. If you let people choose Specific Physical Condition (Death of the Enchanter), then why would you ever pick anything other than this option, unless you are specifically making an object to be handed down to future generations, in which case you’d have to do something like Specific Physical Condition (When The Sun Explodes).
Good point on the specific physical condition. I will have to change that. I am also interested in any other modifications or limitations everyone thinks should be included in a wand of wizardry.
As wands are often seen in fiction I would ask for your take on proper limitations and advantages for a wand in the burning wheel.
Wands appear in fiction as necessary tools of the trade, probably now most famously in Harry Potter. A good wand is like a good set of tools for a carpenter. You can’t do much without them, and you can probably work better with a nice set, especially one you’re familiar with, but it’s not to the extent that I’d consider it worth more than a 1D bonus, maybe, and I wouldn’t really want that. I’d chalk it more up to the idiom of magic: if wizards wave wands you need your wand in hand in order to perform sorcery.
Once you start enchanting something to give bonuses I want to see real restrictions and downsides. Something to make it more than just “I use this all the time and it makes me better at stuff.” The big problem isn’t really the power boost, although I don’t love that; the problem is that it’s boring. There’s nothing wrong with it in the rules, but playing by the rules alone doesn’t make for a good game.
I would say that the Burning Wheel way is to decide that Galen wants an amazing wand, make a bunch of beliefs and put a lot of work into it, and get a bunch of artha for making it. What does it do? Quite possibly nothing. Maybe making your own wand is just a wizardly rite of passage. Maybe other wizards could be impressed by the quality of the wand and recognize a dedicated and gifted enchanter. Or it could have stats. An epic undertaking can justify epic stuff. It’s just my preference that epic stuff be epic and interesting, not epic and utilitarian.
As far as Epic is concerned, I really don’t want him to create anything like an Elder Wand or a One Wand to Rule Them All type of thing. However, I do want it to be meaningful enough that when captured and used as a bargaining chip against him, it isn’t to easy to just replace or remake it, and he should be hampered without it. (Kind of like Daniel Boon and his rifle “Old Bess” he could use any other rifle but had an attachment to Bess and would walk a fare distance to get her fixed rather than replace her.)
Adding the “tools of the trade” to a wand may seem boring to some, but having your tools all wrapped up into your wand also makes you more vulnerable if it’s lost or taken.
One idea I had could make a Wand of Wizardry much more interesting in play would be to cause the owning wizard a wound if his wand is ever broken. This could even be similar to the effect of the death of a familiar (Spirit Familiar Dt pg. 63 MaBu) although I think the size of the wound should be related to the amount of magic within (perhaps the total number of enchantments, or highest enchantment Ob (+) 1 / extra enchantment. That would tend to keep the wand power level low as if it was too high all anyone would have to do is snap the wand to kill the mage.
A different idea I had is to consider the make magic as placing a part of himself within the wand. As long as he has it, no problem, if he loses it he suffers a +1Ob to all wand related actions until he reclaims or replaces it. (Not as deadly as the other idea, but it does cause problems. (I’ve yet to discuss any of this in group yet as we have been down this season.)
At the risk of derailing the thread, I think you’re going too far down the rabbit hole here, something we sometimes refer to as “playing before you play.” If you (the player you, not your character) want to go about making a kewl wand for your character, write a belief about it and play for awhile. Don’t figure out the end game just yet.
Yeah, I’m kinda spinning out of control on this. So many ideas for wand making and just burning wheel in general. My group is down for the season so unless I find some other group this is what I’m left with. At least I can get some feed back on some of my “it sounded good in my head” ideas. That, plus one of my players believes that mages are over powered and should have different fetters on them while another one wonders where all the cool magic items are (a regular at D&D). I shall write down what I learn from these threads and present them to group when we reconvene in the fall. Meanwhile, if anyone posts any of their suggestions for wands, I will keep reading, and as always, I appreciate the feed back!