Eclipse, Entreaty Magic II, and Magical “Feats”

The article on Entreaty Magic presented a way to build yet another magic system – in this case a freeform system of calling on forces or entities that relied on earning the help of those entities. It offered an option to buy that system in eleven eight-point “installments”, rather than as a series of varyingly-sized chunks. That led to a question…

If you are going to have the ‘8 cp per level’ as a way to purchase the progression, is there any reason why you couldn’t just keep buying it past level 11? If so, what would that look like?

-Jirachi

Now that would be mildly awkward, since, while the parts of the Entreaty Magic package which use level-based formula continue to increase with higher levels, once you buy all 87 points worth of the package, you’ve bought all there is to buy. There isn’t any more because some of the basic powers it’s built on have hit their maximum at that point and they’re already Specialized and Corrupted to increase their effects. If you wanted to continue from there, you’d need to either buy secondary abilities that enhance your magical powers or persuade your game master to invent new rules to cover it.

I’d recommend the secondary powers personally. They’re easier and more interesting, and usually a lot less subject to breaking the game. After all, most of the upper limits on abilities in Eclipse are in there for a reason.

So lets extend that progression, spending eight character points per level.

First up, spend two per level on…

L12-L20: Archmagic. Extremely skilled and experienced Entreators may learn to channel brief bursts of even greater power from their patrons, achieving results far beyond the reach of lesser adepts. Unfortunately, they still cannot do so very often. Buy:

  • 3d6 (9) Mana with the Spell Enhancement Natural Magic Option, Specialized for Reduced Cost / only for spell enhancement, only for use with Entreaties, effects so enhanced can have a maximum effective level of 6 at level 12 or less, 7 at level 13+, 8 at level 15+, and 9 at level 17+ (9 CP).
  • Rite Of Chi with +8 Bonus Uses, Specialized for Reduced Cost / only to refill the spell enhancement pool above, requires a nights rest (9 CP).
    • Split up over nine levels this basically provides a pool of (Level – 11) Mana that renews itself each day. This will allow the Entreator to cast a few higher level spells each day or to enhance them in various other ways.

To make up the rest of the 8 CP/Level you can take one magic-boosting Feat / 6 CP effect per level. Some possibilities here include:

L12) Patronic Panoply: This trick allows the user to channel his patrons energies manifesting as solid, physical, items – often magical items. This will require the investment of some skill points to make it really worthwhile, but will be an increasingly powerful option as the user goes up in levels. Buy:

  • Access to the Occult Skill Dream-Binding (3 CP), at normal cost (3 CP). As a rule, the items will be related to one or more of the user’s Patrons somehow. Many Entreaters will even develop one load-out for each patron, allowing them to chose a package to suit a given mission.

L13) Grand Petition: This trick briefly enhances the user’s ability to channel his or her patron’s powers. Activated as a part of using an Entreaty, it allows for a mighty surge of supernatural force, allowing the user to amplify the effects of some spells and overcome resistant creatures defenses. Buy:

  • Berserker (+10 to Caster Level, -2 to Reflex Saves) with Enduring (no fatigue afterwards), Corrupted / only allows the casting of a single spell per use. This trick will function (1 + Level/3) times daily (6 CP).

L14) The Forge Arcane: This trick allows the user to create three minor relics – one for him or herself and two for friends. While these invariably have drawbacks, they each offer the equivalent of two bonus Feats. Buy:

  • Create Relic, Specialized and Corrupted/only usable to make one-point relics, only usable with points from Enthusiast, only relics related to one of the user’s patrons, all relics carry a disadvantage – although this does help reduce their cost (2 CP).
  • Enthusiast with Adaption, Specialized and Corrupted for Triple Effect (a total of three “floating” character points)/points may only be used to create relics (known as “conjures”), relics have a maximum cost of one point and no one can use more than one at any one time (4 CP for the ability to create up to three one-point relics. +1 Relic may be added per additional CP spent. The relics and rituals for the Houngan Conjurer may be helpful).

L15) Ward Of The Principalities: This trick invokes the user’s patrons to look after their agent – channeling in protective effects just when they are needed, although this still counts against their pool of obligations. Buy:

  • Reflex Training (Three extra actions per day variety) with +8 Bonus Uses, Specialized and Corrupted / only for defensive actions, only for Entreaties. The “user’s patrons” will obligingly, and instantly, erect mystical defenses for the user (6 CP).

L16) Summons From Beyond: This trick allows the user to summon a familiar, mystic mount, or other form of companion creature – or to either upgrade an existing companion or summon another. (It’s usually well worth investing some more Feats in your companions). Buy:

  • Companion (6 CP).

L17) A Patron’s Glance: This trick allows an Entreator to briefly turn a spell effect that requires concentration over to his or her patrons to sustain while he or she does something else, picking up maintaining the spell again later if he or she wishes to. Buy:

  • Harnessed Intellect (6 CP).

L18) Agent of the Powers: This trick allows the user to invoke the indirect aid of his or her patrons to bend fortune in his or her favor when necessary – a subtle, but powerful effect. Buy:

  • Karma (6 CP).

L19) Hand Of The Divine Craftsman:

This trick allows the user to create powerful, unique, magical devices through quests and deeds, some of them of potentially worldshaking power. (Alternatively, the character can be boring and take any one Create Item feat). Buy:

  • Create Artifact (6 CP).

L20) Citadel Of Magic: This trick allows the user to establish a Place of Power, Magical Sanctum, or similar location, enjoying various special abilities, the support of allies, and more while there. Buy:

  • Sanctum (as per THIS article).

There are, of course, thousands of other possible “progressions” – you could focus on combat casting, or ritual magic, or using Leadership to bind various sorts of outsiders to your service – but this is Eclipse. There are always thousands of ways that you could take a character.

Now if you’re wanting to expand on a more conventional progression, such as the Wizard… you can use Invocation with the Mighty modifier to gain access to spells of level ten and beyond, buy additional caster levels normally, and/or buy Mana as Generic Spell Levels (Specialized for Increased Effect / only acts as spell slots that expand an existing spell progression. With that, each 6 CP expended on expanding a progression provides 10 spell levels worth of additional spell slots.

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3 Responses

  1. Mostly I just meant ‘if you are going to make it a normal spell progression, there is no reason to blindly copy the restrictions of the path of the dragon’, but I suppose that also kind of works?

    • It was more that you explained it as a ‘spell progression’ rather than installment buying or whatevs. I’m not sure why you couldn’t just say that it’s a normal spell progression with the limitations more or less as described, but that also makes sense.

      • Ah, not what I thought you meant. Well, to do it that way…

        The distinctive features of the Entreaty Magic system are:

      • Free-form spell casting within a set of [(Cha Mod + Level)/2] fairly narrow themes.
      • A separate, independently-refreshing pool of (Cha Mod + Level / 2) spell levels to use with each theme.
      • The ability to employ spells of up to spell level (Level/2, Rounded Up, Six Maximum).
      • A close relationship with the entities that are providing those pools of power, providing various services in exchange for more magic. In balance terms, this is what keeps the price down to a mere 87 CP. Your daily supply of magic is much more limited, an effect equivalent to a Specialization.
      • Those separate pools are the real disconnect between this and a standard-style magical progression. Magical progressions are all about integrated training – using the same basic procedures and skills to produce all your effects. That’s what makes them cheaper than learning a bunch of independent effects and why they all involve caster levels.

        But without the independent pools, the recharge mechanism doesn’t really mean much. Any rational mage would just pick the easiest methods and spam them – getting cheap and easy daily recharges so that they could use all of their spells every day.

        Which takes us right back to how standard progressions work. They’re really a sort of layaway plan: they start weak and become very powerful later on, so you’re paying up front for things you won’t get until later.

        So to convert this to a “standard progression”, we can take up to 174 CP, spread out over 20 levels.

        Quickest and easiest version? Take the Wilder Progression (120 CP in total) and mostly stick with Augmentable Powers. Gesture, chant, and call on eldritch beings while manifesting your powers even if you don’t need to. Summon the (ominous-looking) “Formless Crimson Wraiths Of Rancin!” rather than mere “Astral Constructs”. Spend the other 54 points (enough for nine feats) taking a few boosters for your powers, just like a normal Wilder does. You’ll even gain access to higher level effects in the bargain.

        If you want more flexibility than augmentable psionic powers get you, take Spontaneous Druid Spellcasting, Corrupted for Reduced Cost (5 CP/Level) / provides no spells known (100 CP over 20 levels) and spend the leftover points buying some Metaspells (under Domain / Path on page 30). That’s enough for a ten of them – one at every odd level through level 19. If you want more flexibility (and to match the dozen or so entities that the original package would get you at level twenty) spend another 12 CP getting two more Metaspells at level one. That would be a net cost of 160 CP (8 per level) plus 12 at level one for those two extra metaspells.

        I think I’ll call this version an “Eldritch Master”. It sounds like fun.

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