Mythandar: Mages and Priests

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MAGES IN MYTHANDAR
In Mythandar, practitioners of the magic arts (or simply The Art) are rare and powerful individuals with the knowledge and talent to sense and manipulate magical energy. Mages are traditionally human or half-elven. Elves have their own magical abilities and do not practice human sorcery. Dwarves are resistant and adverse to magic. Orcs and other humanoids lack the required intelligence and talent. Other elder races, such as the lizard-folk of the Far South, have their own arcane arts.

All mages have the following basic skills and abilities:

  • Knowledge of magic lore, including the ability to speak, read and write the arcane language of magic.
  • Sense Power at a range determined by the mage's own level of Power. Any active spell or magical item radiates Power out to a certain distance. The more powerful the source, the greater the area.
  • Spell-casting is largely left up to the imagination of the Player, within certain limits. Note that spells intended to alter-reality with god-like power are not allowed. Basic spells include the creation of light effects, fire (fireballs, flaming hands, etc.), local weather effects, flight, levitation, teleportation, limited invisibility (shadowcloak), wards and protections against magical and physical effects, mindspeak, divination, and magical possession, the summoning of demonic and elemental beings, and the ability to magically animate non-living objects (requiring intense concentration). Necromancy is a seperate area of study that includes summoning and controlling the dead, animating corpses, life extension and other esoteric uses of the Dark Art.
  • Counter-spelling allows any mage to attempt to counter or cancel another's spell or magical ability (Power versus Power).

    TERMS AND TITLES
    Mage at Work THE ART is the study and application of magic in the form of spells, as used by human mages. It is an ancient discipline, its secrets jealously guarded by those who practice it. The Art has three foundations: The Thought (consciousness of Power through learning and experience), The Writ (the focus of Power in runes or written form), and The Element (the source of Power as a substance of creation). The varied combination of these as formulas allows mortals to manipulate magic for their own purposes.

    MAGE is used in Anglamar and the West, referring to both male and female practitioners of the Art.

    APPRENTICE is a junior practitioner, usually one still under the tutelage of an elder mage. Magical academies are not permitted under the Compact of the High Circle. Most adepts willing to teach the Art take a single apprentice at a time.

    ADEPT is a general term referring to any practitioner of the Art who has reached an acknowledged level of Power. A mage or sorcerer is an adept; an apprentice is not.

    ARCHMAGE is one who has reached a position of great Power or status, such as the leader of an order or one who holds an office. The position of Royal Mage of Anglamar was held by the Archmage Izander Graymane until his death/disappearance in the North War 50 years ago.

    SORCERER or SORCERESS are terms used in the Inner Sea Lands and the regions east and south. One may be called a mage in the North, a sorcerer in the Inner Sea, and a witch in the East.

    WITCH refers to a minor female practitioner of the art in Anglamar (usually one without formal apprenticeship). In Varalkia and the East, the term is applied to both male and female spell-casters.

    WIZARD is a title reserved for the greatest practitioners of the Art. There are only seven Wizards in all of Mythandar. Drawn from different lands and races, they form the High Circle, an association to maintain balance among themselves and prevent any single mage from attaining too much Power. By their compact, no Wizard may become directly involved in the events and fortunes of the lands of Mythandar ... Be assured that any mage who attains notoriety or political influence will gain the attention of the High Circle.

    ATTITUDES AND PREJUDICES
    In Anglamar (where the Olde Inn is located) and throughout northwest Mythandar, mages are regarded with fear, awe or deep respect. In Norland, spell-casters are so hated that they are attacked on sight. They are respected in Westhaven and some, those of the Order of the Blue Star, hold great influence in the city. The position of Royal Mage of Anglamar was held by the Archmage Izander Graymane until his death/disappearance in the North War, 50 years ago. Since then there has been no Royal Mage in Gondaran.

    In Varalkia, Eredor and most of the Inner Sea Lands where the Church of the New Faith wields great influence, sorcerers are derided and even persecuted. However, the Sorcerers' Guild of the Inner Sea is a powerful group and chief rival of the Blue Star Mages ... Spell-casters are banned from the Holy City of Tharsis and are forbidden to set foot in Kesh where priest-led death squads hunt them down for torture and death. Witches are routinely burned at the stake in Varalkia.

    The Dwarves despise magic, respecting only the supernatural Power of their own god, Kor. Elves, possessing natural magical abilities themselves, are wary of human magic-users, knowing the weaknesses of mankind. Orcs and other fell humanoids are easily awed and intimidated by magic, and are often manipulated by mages with evil intent.

    MAGIC


    THE POWER OF PRIESTS
    Priests are among the most powerful individuals in Mythandar. As the direct representatives of the gods, they have access to divine Power. Whereas the mage's Power comes from learning, the priest's is born of faith and devotion to his or her deity.

    All priests have the following magical abilities:

    invokation

  • Sense Power at a range determined by the priest's level of Power. Any active spell or magical item radiates Power out to a certain distance. The more powerful the source, the greater the area.

  • Perform Rites and Rituals in their god's name. Each of the Seven Rituals has specific magical effects:

    Absolution secures the forgiveness of the gods and prepares the souls of the faithful for the afterlife.
    Blessing bestows the gods' favor upon individuals (with the effects of magical protection).
    Exorcism removes the onus of magical possession or influence upon individuals.
    Healing restores health, heals wounds, and cures disease.
    Invocation calls upon the aid of the deity directly.
    Retribution calls down the god's wrath upon the priest's enemies in a destructive display of divine Power.
    Sanctuary, bestowed upon a location, creates an area of magical protection.

    TERMS AND TITLES
    ORDER is a formal association of priests who follow the same tenants and traditions. In the New Faith, the Church is divided into five separate Holy Orders, each dedicated to a specific aspect of service and presided over by an Archbishop. Among the priests of the Old Gods, each deity has his or her own order presided over by a High Priest or Priestess.

    HOLY SYMBOL is an amulet fashioned with the symbol of a god and blessed with divine Power The Power Level of the amulet equals that of the priest who blesses it (see the Power Levels table). Holy Symbols have a negative effect upon persons or creatures of opposing ethic - the amulet of a good deity will burn or repel an evil being).

    PRIEST refers to any servant of a deity who is member of a formal order or cult and possesses the ability to wield divine Power.

    ACOLYTE is the lowest level of any priesthood, a priest-in-learning who has not yet been granted the Power of his or her god.

    HIGH PRIEST is the senior member of an order or cult, the highest ranking servant of a deity. Every god and goddess of Mythandar has a High Priest or High Priestess.

    MONK, in the hierarchy of the New Faith, is a mid-level priest.

    ABBOT is the senior priest of an abbey or monastery, where acolytes are trained and monks pursue enlightenment in the New Faith.

    BISHOP, in the New Faith, is a high-ranking priest who is responsible for a temple and its congregation, called a bishopric.

    ARCHBISHOP is in charge of a large region or one of the Holy Orders of the Church. The Archbishop of Gondaran presides over the Grand Temple and the bishoprics throughout Anglamar.

    THE PATRIARCH, in the Holy City of Tharsis on the Inner Sea, is the leader of the New Faith in all of Mythandar.


    MAGIC
    THE GODS OF MYTHANDAR
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