Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Come Together, Coven Me

It's not uncommon. People are social animals. It stands to reason that magic will be a social event for people. Sure there will be loners, there always are, and as with any social context the morality of the majority or at least the strongest personalities will prevail, forcing some to reclusion for their nefarious deeds. There are many advantages to gather multiple spell casters together to work on a shared goal. We've already mentioned pooling points, magical essences, or mass quantities of will focused together as one reason. This is something that can even involve non-casters as well, depending on the setting. So, what are the other reasons for the joining of mystical forces? As with most things the first and easiest answer is logistics. These can be logistics of a martial type, but they can also be a matter of non-violent nature.

The first logistical need anyone might have is coverage. How much of an area does a spell cover? Even boosted the scale has to be less if cast by only one person. Aside from the raw size of the area multiple participants can achieve different shapes or configurations of coverage. The areas need not even overlap; the desired effect may be to affect multiple locations at the same time. Time itself can be another strategic obstacle overcome by more than one caster, especially for prolonged effects. This time-restraint may be a matter of fatigue in the short term or sleep in the long term. It may also be a matter of focus and attention that is mitigated by separate participants in a lengthy casting or ritual. Either the area or time factors are a matter of scale so don't forget to cover truly epic scales, or at least as epic as the setting allows.

Focus and attention are not limited to being maintained for long periods of time. One mind can only handle so many details at one time. Here is an opportunity to craft spells that are really impressive, like the Swiss clocks of spells. Again, consider the epic scale, dozens upon dozens of effects or a handful of effects on numerous targets. This can be devastation or construction, detriment or enhancement. Nuance is a good thing here. Layering might be a consideration as well as the tweaking of effects as they are created. Here the skill of the participants becomes important with less skilled casters doing the simplistic parts and the more skilled ones doing the tweaking, and certainly orchestrating it all. Where normally the novices would be given the grunt work only the more experienced members may have to power to shoulder the power requirements. It all depends.

Mood: relaxed.
Music: Come Together by Aerosmith and Legions by Stratovarius.

Aerosmith: Greatest Hits
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Stratovarius: Visions
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