20 Oct, 2015, Ssolvarain wrote in the 1st comment:
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Just wanted to split off and start a new thread discussing people's favorite magic systems.

I really liked the Will and the Word of Eddings' Belgariad. Basically, one directed their will and spoke a command to produce results. Will the rock to move, and release your will with the word. Strength of the will depended on the person's character. The only strict limitation to this is that it cannot destroy. Trying to will something to "be not" would result in the Will of the user lashing back against them. Once someone is dead, it required extremely powerful Will, like that of the Gods, to bring someone back to life. There were also Demons in this series, which was interesting because they were set apart from the gods, unlike tradition "angels and demons" type stuff. The demons resided in Hell, and could be summoned forth and stuffed into a form determined by the summoner's imagination. In one case in the story, the main character and a wild barbarian summoner began bragging to eachother, trying to one-up the supposed ferocity of their demon. The ultimate result was that the barbarian summoned something more complex than he was capable of maintaning, and… it eated him. Another instance, this guy decides to write his summoning circle…. on water. Also eated.

Mistborn's Allomancy is also really interesting to me. Ingesting, and then "burning" the metals to produce results. The metals come in pairs. For example, burning iron pulls metal, steel pushes metal. Soothing, and rioting emotions to influence people. Even the rarest metal allowing the immediate future to be seen. It was interesting, because if two characters were using the rarest metal, they would be on even ground. It would display your reaction to his reaction, which would then change infinitely as each person would be able to react to the other. The feruchemy used by Terrismen is also really cool. They would wear jewelry that was referred to as a "mind". Copper allowed memories to be stored for later use in a coppermind. Using pewter to store strength (and have it reduced in the mean time), allowed it to be later tapped and increase the strength of the user.

Dungeons and Dragons has probably the king of all magic systems, with very powerful and flexible magic that can be used tactically, especially in conjunction with feats. The different schools of magic were really interesting to me, especially in the game Baldur's Gate which allowed you to specialize in one school for extra spells per day, but you'd lose access to spells of the opposing school. Magic often required not only an invocation, but also material components like bat guano, and sulfur to cast a fireball.

Anyways, enough about my preferences. What kind of magic interests you?
21 Oct, 2015, Hades_Kane wrote in the 2nd comment:
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I typically avoid magic in D&D because I've never really liked the magic system there.

Prepared spells, spells per day, etc. never really did it for me, although I am playing a magic user right now in our Pathfinder game.

And really, not to just try to plug End of Time or toot my own horn or anything, but I think I can honestly say that within MUDs, video games, etc. that EoT's magic system is probably my favorite, but I suppose that shouldn't really be surprising because practically any magic system that Midboss and I liked anything from, we borrowed from heavily in crafting EoT's… those influences range from of course the broad spectrum of Final Fantasy games, to Chrono Trigger, Chrono Cross, Grandia, Magic: the Gathering, Diku/Merc/Rom, D&D, etc.

I detailed some bit of our magic system in the post Ssolvarain split this topic from, so I'm just going to quote what I wrote there.

But with all that in mind, we approached magic on End of Time with a set of rules… not necessarily rigidly defined, because after all, it's magic and I don't think should make TOO much sense (otherwise its science).

Our magic and indeed the very nature of our universe exists on a concept of order/chaos and elemental forces (designated by color). Basically take the Star of David, and one "triangle" is order, the other is chaos, and along each point is an elemental designation. The triangle of order contains the elemental concepts of Blue (Water), Green (Earth), White (Holy) and the triangle of chaos has Red (fire), Yellow (Air), Black (Unholy). Every being has a balance of the two forces, and each has a primary and secondary elemental align. If you are red primary, then you have the choice of green or white as your secondary (as they sit adjacent to red on the star). Each "color" has 4 spells that are assigned to it, and the bulk of our magic comes from the manipulation of those forces. You can easily combine adjacent elements (red+green = magma, white+red = photon), and while it is "bending the rules" of magic a bit, there are other, more powerful spells that can be cast by combining various combos of colors/elements, but these are typically more volatile, harder to control, harder to cast, and costlier.

The concept behind casting, itself, is that in the same way every being has order/chaos and a combination of elements within themselves, the planet and indeed the very fabric of existence is tied into these base, primal forces. Every living thing, particularly the planet, is infused with all encompassing energy (the lifestream for FF7 fans, more or less the idea of "the force" for star wars fans)… Magic is created by manipulating this energy field by deep concentration and tracing specific patterns "in the air" or into/throughout the energy/surrounding mana. As a spell is cast, it directly affects the elemental balance in the room as well.

This is really kind of the tip as far as how are rule system works. There are things that step lightly out of these boundaries, some things that don't fit within them at all (non elemental magic, for example)… and even some things like Vampires existing as a twisted bastardization of this energy, cut off from it and requiring them to drink blood to absorb the necessary life energy from others since they are cut off and have no way to naturally harness/replenish their own energy. Even our class system of class promotion follows along this general concept of balance and chaos/order.
22 Oct, 2015, roguewombat wrote in the 3rd comment:
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Generally anything by Brandon Sanderson, for sure (e.g. Mistborn, Warbreaker, The Way of Kings).

As for games, though, I really do enjoy playing as a magic user on End of Time. I seem to remember enjoying it on Ivalice, too, which shared some of the same source material - but EoT really takes it up a notch.
22 Oct, 2015, quixadhal wrote in the 4th comment:
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My favorite magic system, overall, is the classic 2nd edition AD&D system.

In 2e, magic was firstly divided into two categories, "magic user" and "clerical". The kind of magic clerics used was prayers, granted by divine beings of various types and spheres of influence. As such, the god you chose to worship directly affected the kind of prayers you could ask for, and your character's actions directly determined how likely it was that such prayers were answered.

If you followed a god of pain and suffering, trying to use a healing spell was problematic, and usually reserved as a last resort… since healing someone who isn't on death's door goes against your beliefs. Likewise, casting spells that hurt or do damage might be refused or heavily frowned upon if you follow a god of healing and nurturing.

OTOH, the magic that "magic users" wielded was drawn from the world itself, and was divided into various schools. These schools were aligned in a circle, so some types of magic complemented each other, while others were in opposition to each other. You could choose to dabble in everything, or specialize in only a few, or even super-specialize in just one.

For additional flavor, the Dragonlance world setting added in the influence of moons (and other celestial bodies), to control the ebb and flow of magic. When the dark moon rose, evil spells were stronger, and evil gods had more influence.

It was a pretty well balanced system, for playing as a group. Mages started out incredibly frail, but if they survived they became incredibly powerful. Unlike most games these days, balance was for group vs. encounter, not solo players or "duels". That's why it worked well.
23 Oct, 2015, Davion wrote in the 5th comment:
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Unfortunately, the magic system I've had the most fun with exists within the game Magicka, which is a graphical game. The way the elements interact with each other is pretty awesome. The more people you have, if you know what you're doing it's just a wrecking ball. It would be interesting to see some of that translated to text in some way.

Also, those all playing EoT should join up under the Mud Listing. Your posts'n other site contributions will count towards your total Mud weight which influences things like position on the main mudlist, front page top 10, banner rotation frequency, those kinds of things. Also, posts on other boards like the EoT one will count as well!
23 Oct, 2015, Ssolvarain wrote in the 6th comment:
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Join up under the mud listing?
23 Oct, 2015, Davion wrote in the 7th comment:
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If you check out the mud listing for end of time, there's a "Join" link next to the name in the navigation bar. Go through that, it'll assign you to a player at EoT. When weight for the MUD is considered, it considers not only the manager, but the players, and staff as well. Pretty much anything that adds a row to the database that associates itself with you is worth something. Some things are heavier than others.
23 Oct, 2015, Ssolvarain wrote in the 8th comment:
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Interesting. Did not even notice that menu bar lol. It's camouflaged!
26 Oct, 2015, Nathan wrote in the 9th comment:
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Davion said:
If you check out the mud listing for end of time, there's a "Join" link next to the name in the navigation bar. Go through that, it'll assign you to a player at EoT. When weight for the MUD is considered, it considers not only the manager, but the players, and staff as well. Pretty much anything that adds a row to the database that associates itself with you is worth something. Some things are heavier than others.

Very tangential, but a side column in the page content seems like it would be a better (i.e. more visible, more clear that it's a mud listing specific set of links) spot for those links than a sub navbar.


I don't know if I've encountered a specific system that I don't like. Eddings' concept seemed a little tenuous and hard to grasp, personally. Not that it was bad per se, but I'm not sure it had any of cluing in the reader to the use of magic except by shoving it right under their nose or being very explicit about it (i.e. X did Y.) I rather like the D&D system (~3.5+) with the notion of a spoken component plus some material requirement (in most cases). It gives the neat impression that magic is about both knowledge and having the right things. Balances it a little bit so that even though it's strong there are limitations on what any one person can do at a time without a lot of planning ahead.