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New chapter in 'Mage Cult' and clarifying an important element

Posted by Maverick-Werewolf, 27 October 2010 · 2,026 views

An exciting new chapter in The Case of the Illikon Mage Cult has been posted! You can read the all-new third chapter of the story in the Stories section.
Click here to go to the discussion topic for this story.

Also, some of the pages on Shifters and Shifter-kin have been edited to make the fate of the Shifters clearer. It seems to be a common misunderstanding that the term 'shifter' is still used in Wulfgard at present, but this is not the case. Knowledge of shifters and their history have been completely lost to time; no society is even aware that such creatures existed or were ever called such. The term 'shifter' and 'Wulfgard' are all but forgotten, and they are certainly never used in any sort of regular society.

That’s all for now, but rest assured we have more updates on the horizon. Thanks for reading!

YAY! New chapter! I'm going to go read it now. :)

Thanks for clearing that up, I was slightly confused about it myself.
You never disappoint, Wolfy. ;)
I liked it. Rooftop chase could be a little more detailed, but other than that I enjoyed it.
I feel like more texture is needed, and I would strongly recommend that the spell "Cruciris" and it's effect be changed dramatically from it's Harry Potter equivalent.
I personally hate the idea of a staff in the hands of an expert, as I've always regarded things like that as a channeling "crutch" if you will. You also need to draw a distinction between spoken spells, and the rushing power of say, firecasting.
I've always looked at spells as being the wand related stuff that was never really raw, and that stuff is just a huge turnoff to me. I like the raw kind of feel to these powers, like they're something that you're sort of misusing.
I also didn't like the part where they were talking about necromancy, and it seemed like an untamed frontier, and then he was like "but the dark elves are totally BA at it and have been for forever". I liked the cryptic, never before heard of sort of feel that magic had in the beginning. I recognize that the mage cult is like an unholy cluster of the only users all around, but they sound waaaay OP, and Celsus being the strongest at like everything while knowing the most was a turn off as well. I think Fredryck's ability to use should be substantially better than everyone else's. Summoning a gale and a lot of other powers were way OP in my opinion, because in the beginning Kyros sounded like some clumsy unwieldily but extremely valuable prodigy child. Then he kind of gets squashed by everyone, and literarily is forgotten about.

Typo: "“That did not look like not self-defense;” Serena said, nodding gravely, “it was a slaughter.”
Wow, Hurc. Whatcha spergin' out so much for, bro? I didn't know you cared so much about magic. Well, I wrote this chapter, so I guess I should respond to all this stuff, although I'm not inclined to, considering its total negativity.

- A lot of spells are summoned with High Imperial (Latin), just as they are in so many other works of fiction (since long before Harry Potter). "Crucio" means "to torture." I simply put it into a more appropriate conjugation.
- Staves in Wulfgard are used for channeling magic more accurately. They can be a useful tool to focus one's magical abilities. Why would an expert mage just throw something like that away?
- Under most circumstances, magical spells need to be spoken aloud or at least cast using certain hand movements (like drawing a symbol in the air). When the mage speaks the language of the realm they wish to draw power from, that power comes to them. Many mages can summon the element with which they have an affinity without speaking, but it's far more difficult to summon and control that way. Speaking a particular incantation allows a more precise use of the summoned power, allows the mage to summon it with less force of will, and allows them to use elements that would normally be far beyond their sphere. A mage who knows a lot of different spells will usually have an advantage over one who is completely ignorant of them.
- Magic is the most mysterious force in the realm of Wulfgard. There are extremely few beings who understand it, it constantly breaks its own rules, and you can count the number of libraries of magical tomes on the fingers of one hand. But Dark Elves truly have been practicing demonic magic for generations. It's what corrupted them in the first place. How could they have been using it all that time and never come to understand it better?
- Of course the mage cult is "OP," they have an arsenal of otherworldly powers at their beck and call. How could they NOT be? That's why people fear magic; because they fear its power. But I think you'll find that the Mundane have plenty of ways of dealing with the Gifted. Notably the Inquisition, who will come into the story more later.
- I don't recall anyone saying Celsus was hands-down the strongest mage in the cult. They haven't exactly had a bunch of duels to determine who's the strongest. Celsus is the one who brought them together and has the most magical knowledge, so they accept him as leader. He's also quite powerful himself, and the combination of power and knowledge is better than one or the other exclusively. Frederick does have the most raw power of the group. The defining factor of his character - besides the fact that he's crazy - is that he has an extremely strong connection with one element alone: fire, and he has greater power in that element than anyone has ever seen.
- Making a bit of wind blow one's sails is OP...? You make it sound like they called forth a hurricane. Believe me, if we make them summon you, you'll be a lot more destructive than that.
- Kyros is valuable because he is a mage, which is an extreme rarity in itself, but he's not really a particularly special prodigy otherwise.
Sorry, I wasn't trying to be negative.

I think the "witch hunt" mentality of the empire is a very nice plot. The Inquisition actually sound really BA, a bit like Nazgul must admit, but with a touch of personality and humanity (which will probably come later) they sound really awesome.

-Yeah, I thought it was latin. There's just a lot a Harry Potter drag going on here, and with the next movie coming out it's just not quite original, despite the latin roots which are typically an allegiance-less resource.
-Okay, so staves swing the opposite way in Wylfgard. I always thought of them as training tools, over emphasized movements etc. No biggie.
-Alrighty, makes sense. I'm just trying to see where my perception of the developing magic rules for wylfgard fit in.
-Magic just seems really understood from the perspectives the story is written from. Like, Tom and Mag and Cordon aren't really fazed when they get tossed. They're like : "Ow, get him" instead of "Never seen that before need new pants".
-Okay. I just figured novices wouldn't quite be able to pull of what Kyros did. Maybe sparks from fingertips etc. Just a different starting point to have in mind I guess.
-Celsus just seemed like it. Publicly disciplining and threatening death if anyone crossed him. Putting people in their place like that and having Fredryck just take it cast that idea on me.
-Well you did say gale. :P
-Okay doke. So what makes a mage different from a regular magic user? And is affinity just really nailed down, EG; You have water affinity so don't even bother trying to work with fire, or is it a corner of adeptness in a mushy middle ground?
Oh, well it just seemed that way...

Well the cruciris thing was a totally intentional jab at Harry Potter. I figured why not throw one in there. :P But one thing's for sure: no wizard schools in Wulfgard. A few master-apprentice relationships, of course, but no schools. Actually what this story has started to remind me of a lot is X-Men... with Celsus as Magneto, Fred as Pyro, Kyros as Rogue perhaps... and that was definitely not intentional. :blink:

Maybe you're right about the magic not being startling enough to the non-mages. I suppose I could read over it again and change a few things to emphasize that more. I tried to pull it off in the first chapter but may have lost a grip on it over time.

I'm not sure which of Kyros's actions you're saying was too powerful. If you're talking about the part where he blows over Tom, Magnus, and Corben, and then flies up high enough for Dirk to catch him, my idea for that was that he was terrified. Under emotional stress, mages sometimes unleash their powers without even thinking, and it's not always something they could normally do. For example, I'd hate to see Fred get really, really pissed.

As for Celsus, well, without giving too much away, let's just say that he has a big trick up his sleeve.

Mage is just a generic term I tend to use for magic-users. Anyone with 'the Gift' is a mage. I originally planned it along the lines of D&D, where if they receive training and read lots of spells from books, they become a wizard, with a wide variety of spells at their command. Or if they simply train themselves by practicing summoning their natural element, they become sorcerers, with a more limited variety of spells, but which are much more potent.

A self-taught mage (sorcerer) would be more limited to his or her affinity. Those who learn more spells can use them to summon other elements outside their affinity. Each element has a 'sister element' and 'opposite element'. An air mage works well with water, making it easy to use ice spells, but they'll have a lot of trouble with earth spells. A fire mage works well with earth, but doesn't like water magic one bit. Then there are the weird elements: light and shadow. Very few people have those, and they have weird sister elements. Shadow mages are good with earth and water, light with wind and fire. All affinities have access to basic arcane spells also, of course. And some mages are more or less in-tune with their specific element than others. You won't see Fred using any water magic. He's so far into the fire corner of the circle it's crazy. I should show you the circle diagram, I guess, instead of writing out this huge paragraph.

Actually, I don't mind the criticism. If anything it's inspired me more to write in the story, maybe read over it again and touch it up. The muse has been quiet lately, so anything that wakes her up a little is good.
Just throwing this out there, but all this "sister element" stuff is reminding me a lot of the classical Chinese elements. Me likey. ^_^

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